Friday, September 26, 2008

banana puddin' pie.

This one is for Rob's mom, Liz! Here is the pie I practiced making for when you come to visit while Lydia gets born! :) I promise to make it for you!

It was much yummier than I expected it to be. I like bananas, but not to the point of dessert. However, it is pretty darn good! Here is the recipe for anyone who enjoys baking! It's definitely a "keeper". It came from Katie Lee Joel's cookbook "The Comfort Table".

Banana Pudding Pie

65 vanilla wafers
2/3 stick unsalted butter melted
2 ripe medium bananas, thinly sliced

½ C sugar
1/3 C flour
¼ tsp salt
2 C milk
4 L egg yolks, lightly beaten
2 tsp vanilla extract

Whipped Cream:
1 C heavy whipping cream
2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Pie: preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease 9 inch pie plate. Pulse 45 vanilla wafers in food processor until finely crushed. Reserve ¼ C to top the pie. Mix the crumbs and melted butter. Press into pie plate for crust and bake for 10-12 minsutes.

Pudding: in medium saucepan over M heat, combine the sugar, flour, salt. Whisk in milk and stir constantly until the mixture comes to a slow boil and thickens – about 7 mins. Reduce heat to very L. Stir a couple Tbsp of the mixture into the egg yolks, and add the egg yolks back into the hot mixture. . Stir constantly until the mixture is thickened to pudding – ¾ mins. Remove from heat and add vanilla.

Arrange one banana’s worth of slices over the crust. Spread half the pudding over the bananas, top with the remaining 20 vanilla wafers. Top wafers with remaining bananas and pudding. Let cool completely.

Whipped Cream: Beat the cream, sugar, vanilla until soft peaks form. Spread over pie, and sprinkle with reserved crumbs. Chill pie in refrigerator.

coffee beans and solo flights.

So, as Rob's job as Flight Commander comes to an end and he begins a new job...he is ending on a good note. Whenever students solo in the T-38, it is usually "customary" to give your instructor a token of appreciation for soloing you out. Usually, this translates into a bottle of alcohol. However, Rob doesn't really drink, and he has usually received coffee in its place. I think it's great, because it is something we shop for on a regular basis. He would come home with 5 or 6 bags of coffee, and one student about a year ago began a coffee bean subscription for an entire year from a local roasting company in Destin, FL. Once a month we would receive a choice coffee, complete with a write up on the particular coffee's location and its distinction. That student he graduated a FULL YEAR ago is already at RTU and only last month the coffee "subscription" finally ended. Not too shabby to say the least!

Well, today, after picking up Ben from school, we headed up to base to visit the husband at work. Rob said he needed me to help him bring something to the car to take home, and low and behold it was 4 plastic bags full of COFFEE! We're talking anywhere from 1/2 lb to 1 lb bags, not to mention two big economy tubs of Folger's. And coffee isn't exactly cheap! I asked if it came from one student and it did. The student said he didn't know what Rob liked, so he just got a bunch of different coffee. OK, now seriously, we are not that picky. I do have some friends who are pretty serious about coffee (Shannon!) :) I thought to myself, "I grocery shop with a 3 year old, how picky could I get when I can't browse the coffee aisle - or any aisle for that matter - for more than a couple minutes before he's off to help me with the next item on our list!" Heck, I haven't even added "coffee" to my list in a year's time, that I don't even know what the local Walmart and/or commissary have to offer anymore!

I told Rob that if he solos anyone else, they might just need to give him something different. Hmmm...I wonder if any of them babysit......... Just kidding!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

a few pictures.

Just wanted to share a few pictures of us recently. We attended the Air Force Ball this past Thursday, and had a fun time.

Fellow military and MOPS friends.

Here is Ben on his first day of school - outside his classroom. Here is a picture of Rob and me in San Antonio, and I think that Ben looks like me in the photo. I don't normally see much of me in Ben, so when I do I get a little excited! ;)

Ben and a toad that was in our backyard, until Rainey got a hold of it...

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

my dear mama.

So, I received a care package from my mom in the mail today. And here is what was included. See photo. Let's get a closer look. Is that a foot? Did you know she even wrote Ben's name on it?

Seriously, my mom can be such a goof and completely random, and at the same time - always a good sport about things! I just had to find it humorous, and exactly like her to think to herself, "what am I going to do with this hand stress reliever shaped like a foot? .... Oh I know, I'll give it to Ben!" To be fair she also included a couple craft boards shaped like a plane and a stegasaurus that can be colored.
And I think the FUNNIEST thing is that of those few items she included for Ben - he just thought the foot was the most hilarious thing in the world, and began running around with this baby sized foot and laughing and tormenting our poor, sweet Rainey. I should have gotten a photo of that!

Thank you, Mom for all the baby girl bodysuits! And the camisole for me. What is it with clothes that gets a woman so excited! The pinks, purples, and yellows gave me a shot of excitement to be holding a girl in just a mere couple months! I can't even imagine what it must be like to have a girl at this point! While I am not one to always miss my parents, is that bad? I do occasionally get the pangs of missing family close by. For instance, I roasted a chicken last week, and after dinner, I had to sit and pick the remaining chicken pieces before disposing of the bones. I called my mom and told her I missed her because "no one picks a chicken like my mom". I always remember her picking the chicken apart and never complaining...when I was picking at it, I kept thinking, "I wish she was here, cuz she would do it!" It really surprised me that nostalgic thoughts can just hit you at the strangest of times.

Please keep my mom in your prayers, as she is traveling today with a couple of her sisters to the Philippines, because my Lolo died (her dad). Prayer for safety and God's peace.

Friday, September 5, 2008

our 4-D ultrasound.

It's still a girl, and this makes us so excited to meet her in person!

Enjoy the video. It's mostly for family, because they are the ones most excited to probably see it! But to anyone else, you're welcome to view as well. Thank you to all who were thinking of us, awaiting our next ultrasound!

Aside from seeing her face, the tech listened to the heartbeat and took a moment to check certain anatomy. It really is so neat to see your baby in utero, and because we have Ben in our lives, it has made me - and probably Rob - more excited to meet her in person. And the ultrasound is the next best thing, since we can't see her just yet!

Rob worked on making the file size much much smaller, so that it is easier to upload.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

end of summer moments.

Thought I would highlight a few photos from the end of this summer. It is still hot, Rob is still cutting grass, Ben is still loving being a boy, I am enjoying all the family moments.

But...Rob will be glad when the grass stops growing and Ben will be sad when grass cutting season is over. He will probably cry and fuss a lot about it. But thankfully, our good friend, Alex gave him a bubble lawnmower for his birthday, because he is still loving that thing AS MUCH as the day he got it. (Seriously, Martha, it is the coolest toy your son could have gotton him.) Definitely a mommy favorite for me! Now if it only really cut grass...

Rob has gotten a couple new classes of students, but isn't sure if he'll see them to the end of not. He has been a flight commander for a year or so now, so he may get shuffled around. He is taking another class online for his Masters in Military History, that will be done the end of October. He has been running a bit more than me, and did a 10K this past Sunday. It was the Nike+Ipod race that you could do anywhere and receive credit for it, provided you used your Nike+ chip to record your time.

Preschool starts next week, and we are ALL excited for that! Ben had his sports physical for soccer, preschool, and his slightly late 3 year check all in one visit. How is it exactly that I go from freakout mama to having my FRIEND remind me that I haven't had Ben's three year check?!?! But he actually got to read the eye chart for grownups, and not kids. The kids' test apparently has pictures instead of letters (ie. school bus, heart). He had a hard time with line 6, and would mistake a couple letters such as an O for a C. It was a realization for me that I can't help my son every step of the way....I wanted to say to him, "nooo, guess again" before realizing that, umm, this *is* a test, and I just can't help him on it. Of course, I tell the husband about it that day, and I should have known that he would ask me, "what line was line 6?" I am thinking, um, didn't you just answer your own question - line 6 is line 6!? Then he clarifies, "was line 6 the 20/20 vision line?" Oooh, I know where you're going with this one, Mr. Pilot Husband just need to chill out - you wear contacts yourself! :)

As for me, I have been doing all the domestic things around the boys. Reading more lately, crocheting a baby blanket for a friend's friend, "exercising" with Ben around the track (he rides/I walk), making meals for families with new babies or illnesses, working Red Carpets at the husband's job to raise money for our wives' fund. I am participating more actively in MOPS (mothers of preschoolers) this year, and Ben will be in school thrice weekly.

10 weeks to go for this "bump" of mine and we're having our 4-D ultrasound done on Thursday. Will be sure to upload some pictures! Especially of certain anatomy! :)

I hope every one's summer is winding down nicely for a good Fall start.

Jenny and Rob and Ben

PS - if you don't hear from me after the baby comes, you can consider this a Christmas letter! Ha~ who needs a Christmas letter when you can blog now?!

Rob: "Looks like we found Papa Smurf's house!" We used our son to reference the size of this schroom.

Here is Ben with a good scrape on his nose from Awana's. Rob asked Ben's teacher if he was trying to get his "Face Sledding" merit badge. While Ben apparently biffed it and then slid a little upon contact, he has been loving Awana's and has even memorized his first couple Bible verses.

Ben at Mother Goose's library reading. This is the show-n-tell portion. She is a quite the quacky lady you might expect. She has a deep southern drawl, and has the boys and girls line up in different lines upon entering the reading room. She says in the craziest voice I have ever heard, "Nooooooooooooowwwwwww, Gentlemen, what do you say to the ladies?" And the boys repeat, "Laaaadiesss, would you like to go in first?" After this the little ladies are to accept politely and are told to CURTSY to the boys. It is seriously a hoot!
Labor Day we enjoyed the Space Museum in Huntsville, AL.

Rob and Ben in front of the Blackbird.

This demonstrator made homemade rockets using film tubes, water, and alka seltzer tablets. It was pretty neat - a fun thing to do at home.
Ben and Rob before the movie "Fly me to the Moon" in 3-D.
The Space shuttle simulator.