Baking With the Littles: Brownies




The cookie jar is empty, and my littles really wanted to bake today. But instead of making cookies this week, we decided to make some chewy chocolate brownies. The kids LOVE to "bake" with me, they even have matching aprons. 
This is a easy recipe which just flies out of the pan. Everyone loves them. 

Enjoy :)


INGREDIENTS:
2 cups white sugar
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup baking cocoa
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
4 teaspoons water
DIRECTIONS:
1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9x13-inch baking pan.
2.Combine white sugar, flour, cocoa, salt, and baking powder in a bowl. Whisk oil, eggs, corn syrup, and vanilla extract in a small bowl. Stir egg mixture into flour mixture; fold in walnuts. Spread into prepared baking pan.
3.Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes.











Thanks for visiting,


Typical Homeschool Day




We have now started week 8 of Homeschool and we have gotten in a nice routine, which I am loving. I always get questions on how I manage to homeschool on top of all of my other daily tasks, so I figured I would share with you all.  

We use Sonlight 1st grade Core B
We follow the 4 day week, which means that Fridays are a day off for us. 

----------------------

I have never been a morning person, but I have a little early riser (my 8 month old) So we usually start our day around 6:30-7am. I have tried tricking the bigger kids to sleep a bit more by getting black our drapes, but unfortunately as soon as they hear their baby brother they are up too. They come to my bed and cuddle around 7:30-8 am finally we get up and proceed with our morning routine: making beds, getting dressed, brushing teeth and starting the laundry. 

After the kids have finished their morning duties, I call them into the classroom, we do the calendar, and I explain to them what to do on their independent work. 


I used to use work boxes (which I am hoping to use again some day) But my little man thinks it's his job to pull out all the drawers, every single day. I am not kidding, he runs to the boxes as soon as he gets in the classroom. But as long as he is occupied, I am ok. We just compromise. :)



So for now I just lay out all of their independent work on the desks for them. 

While they do independent work, I get breakfast ready.

Independent work consists of:

Handwriting
Spelling 
Copy work
Cutting/Pasting/coloring/mazes/word searches
Math




Ussually Em will get through at least two of these before breakfast, then after breakfast she goes back to work. I usually put the baby down for a nap now and throw another load of laundry in. 




While baby is sleeping I work with my preschooler while Em finishes up her writing.

Then we work on Math, review spelling words, verses and sing our weekly song. 






Then we usually go into the play room and get comfy and do all of our reading:

History, poems, read alouds, reading and more...




After all of the reading, we do science (which we actually didn't do today since we did today's part last week because we wanted to read ahead. 

After everything is done, we do our craft or experiment 
Today we decided to create clay cookies, strawberries and cupcakes. 
As soon as they dry we will paint them. 
(The kids are planning on using them for their tea party)






While the kids are crafting, I get everything ready for the next day, fold my huge pile of laundry and start making lunch. 

So by lunch time we are done with school and the baby is up. 

After lunch we run errands if we need to, play outside, prep dinner, clean the house and so on. 

We have started getting comments from people (for example at stores, library, restaurants and so on) "shouldn't you be in school" "is there no school today?" and we get to reply "We already finished my school" :)

I love this routine right now. I am thankful things are going so well. Off course not all of our days go by smoothly- Last week we finally skipped our first day. First day skipped out of 7 weeks, is not bad. I just combined all of the lessons in the next few days, so technically we did all of the work, but we had a day off. 

Well that is how our days go by. 

Thanks for visiting,















Pumpkin Patch 2014


I am so excited that fall is here! It is one of my favorite season, the leaves changing colors, the cooler weather, the season for soups and pies, the layering of clothing, and the fact that the evening are longer which means we have more "family time" :) It all makes me very happy.

This weekend we continued our yearly tradition and headed to the pumpkin patch for for the corn maze, hay rides, kettle corn, petting zoo and the pumpkin patch. 

We grabbed a wheel barrow and went searching for those perfect pumpkin amidst 100s of pumpkins. 


It was this little guys 1st time at the pumpkin patch, last year this time I was 6 months pregnant with him.


My big kidos. 


Mama and Nico



















I am so glad I captured these precious moments at the pumpkin patch this year.

Thank you for visiting, 



8 Month Update





I feel like I have not blogged in forever, which isn't exactly the case- but one month is a long time. 
I never intended to take a break, but with homeschool and life with three kids in general it seems that I never have any free time.  

But I figured I should at least get my little man's update up (even though it is 2 weeks late... oops)

 How is he 8 months old already?! 
It seems that he was just in my belly and now I have a little baby who thinks he is a big kid. I may be biased, since he is all mine, but I think he is the cutest little thing. He has the cutest smile and makes my heart smile just thinking of him. 

Weight/Length: He is 25.5 lbs. I am not sure how long he is (will need to wait for his next dr apt)

New Milestones: As soon as William turned 8 months, he started crawling with his belly off the floor. It's like something clicked, and shortly after he started pulling himself up on everything and waking around while holding on to things. 


He crawls up the stairs (with me behind him off course) I am telling you, there is no stopping this guy. He thinks he can do wherever his big brother and sister do. 

He now has 8 teeth, the last 6 came in at the same time around 7 months. Boy was he miserable. 

Sleep: This little guy started waking up more often during the night to nurse, which probably means he is going through a growth spurt. However, he now take at least 2 naps a day which lasts at least an hour, which is a relief, because during his morning nap, we do most of our homeschooling and during his afternoon nap I get dinner ready. 
Eating: He is still nursing every 1-2 hours. If I pump, then he eats more (4-5 oz) So he is able to go 3 hours. He is not interested in any food from a spoon, even things he used to like, like mashed potatoes, yogurt, apple sauce. Now he just likes to feed himself. So I try and give him whatever we are eating. He loves roasted vegetables, fruit, bread and lots of other things. 

Clothing: He is already wearing 12-18 months clothing. 
Mood: He is a very happy baby especially when you are playing with him or carrying him around. As soon as he sees you, he breaks out a huge smile. I call him my little flirt. When we are out and about, he locks eyes with someone and starts smiling and babbling. He loves attention. 

loves:
  • Chewing anything he can get his hand on.
  • Bathtime- He has discovered how to splash with his hands and feet.
  • Being Outside, stroller rides are a life saver some days. 
Doesn’t Love:
  • He doesn't like diaper changes or clothing changes. As soon as I get him down on the pad or bed, he tries to get away. So I need to distract him with something or change his diaper on the bed or floor. 

  • What I Want to Remember:
  • How excited he gets when he sees me.
  • His cute little teeth.
  • How he loves his brother and sister. He loves when they play with him 
  • How cute he is sitting all on his own and playing with his toys- well mostly chewing all his toys. 
Here is my cute little bunch. They fill up my days with laughter, smiles, tears and tantrums:


Thanks for visiting.

Rita




Chicken Schnitzel


Chicken Schnitzel is a regular in our house, I especially like to make it for Shabbat since it reheats nicely and can be used the next day for sandwiches, salads etc. 

Ingredients:

4 Skinless boneless chicken breasts
Salt/black pepper
1 Cup of flour
3 eggs beaten
Dijon mustard
Panko Crumbs
4 TB butter
Vegetable oil
3 garlic cloves -minced
Parsley

  1. Set the flour, eggs and panko in three separate bowls. Cut chicken breasts in half and pound them thin and even. (I like to put the chicken between waxed paper to keep from making a big mess while pounding
  2.  Transfer pounded chicken to a bowl and season with salt and pepper and minced garlic. Dredge the chicken in the flour, shaking off any excess, then dip in the eggs and coat evenly with the panko.
  3. In a large skillet heat the butter and oil. Add the chicken and cook over medium-high heat, turning once, until golden and crispy. Transfer the chicken to a paper towel-lined plate/sheet to drain.
  4. Once oil has drained, move to serving dish and sprinkle with parsley. 
Enjoy!




Rita's Beef Stroganoff


I have tried a few recipes of beef stroganoff and although they were good, I never loved them enough to repeat, so I finally decided to take matters into my own hands and create my own recipe. 
The result was fantastic. This is how I make this dish now and I wrote down the approximate measurements today as I was cooking since I had some requests. 

We all love this dish, even though the kids pick out the mushrooms (which means more for me!)
they truly devour the rest. It has so much flavor and the meat is very tender.


Ingredients:

2 lbs beef chuck roast
Salt/pepper
1/4 cup salted butter
3 TB vegetable oil
3 green onions (whites only)
1 cup chopped onion
3 cups chopped mushrooms
3 cloves of garlic (minced)
4 TB flour
10 oz Chicken broth (yes I use chicken broth- not beef)
1 tsp dijon mustard
1/2 cup sour cream
1/3 cup of white wine
egg noodles
olive oil
garlic salt


Directions:

Remove fat from the roast and cut into strips. Season with salt and pepper.

In a large skillet, over medium heat, melt butter and oil. 

Add the beef strips and cook until browned, stirring often. 

Add the onions, garlic and mushrooms- sauté everything together. 

Once the onions and mushrooms are browned, add the flour with the juices and stir well. 

Add the chicken broth and mustard and bring to a boil. 
Turn the heat down to low and cover and simmer for one hour or until the meat is tender. 

Then bring the heat up to medium and add the sour cream and wine. Heat and stir. 
Add salt and pepper to your desire.

Boil water and cook the egg noodles to package directions. 
Drain noodles (do not rinse) toss with olive oil and garlic salt. 

Spread the noodle in a serving dish, add the Beef Stroganoff on top of the noodles.

Enjoy!