Welcome

Welcome to my little corner of the world. I am so honored by your visit today. My name is Kristi and I am married to my college sweetheart(I refer to him here as "Mr. Incredible"), momma to my 2 beautiful girls who are growing much too quickly, a high school computer teacher, photographer, and a gardener (at times~right now I'm growing weeds). I love to laugh, drink strong Starbucks coffee, take pictures, and be anywhere my family is. Jesus is my Savior and I try so hard to be the wife and momma that He has called me to be. I often fail but He lovingly picks me up, dusts me off, and encourages me that with Him all things are possible. Feel free to join me on this journey of faith, stop in and say hello, look around, and leave a comment~I love comments. Why "Kiki's Corner?" My nephews call me Aunt Kiki and I love that too.

Mr. Incredible, the Plumber, to the Rescue!

Last week....the week of Hannah's birthday party....my kitchen sink began leaking. Mr. Incredible looked at it and said that he would go grab his tools and fix it. Well, the small leak then turned into a major leak so he decided that we needed to replace some gasket thingy-ma-jig, and something about hoses.

So, the kitchen was closed for a night until he could get the required parts. The next evening he had bad news that the parts we needed were a bit hard to find and since the faucet was starting to peel, we should just replace the faucets because they would come with new hoses and the gasket thingy-ma-jigs that we needed.

My day at school was a bit stressful, so I relished at the thought of going on a date with my man, even if it was to Home Depot and Lowes, to find new faucets. An hour alone with him was just what my heart needed. I felt the stresses of the day melt alway...yes even in Home Depot.

Have you picked out faucets lately? There are a lot to choose from. We found the perfect set at Lowes, but of course it was on the tallest shelf, and a lady named Jessica had to bring her monster ladder to get it down for us. Finally with faucet in hand we headed home with high hopes of getting it installed...after all we only had 2 more days until the big party and I needed a kitchen sink that worked!

Mr. Incredible went to work installing the new faucets:

Proudly, he asked me to turn on the finished faucets where we discovered that the hoses for the hot water and cold water were switched. Great! Back under the sink he went....only to find out that the hot water hose was too short. Kitchen closed for another night.

Thursday night, he brought home the new, longer hose, hooked it up and wa-llah...cue the music...I am back in business. I have new faucets, that work, aren't they beautiful...well as far as faucets go?




Since Mr. Incredible was such a great plumber, I asked him if he could look at my bathroom sink because it kept getting clogged and I couldn't figure out why.
It wasn't long before he asked me to take a look at what he found in my drain:

Can you tell what he found? It's my pen from ATPE, the teacher's organization that I am a member of. What on earth was it doing in my sink?!

Ya'll have a great Friday. Blessings to you!!!!
Please, visit my friend Kim for more Friday Funnies.

Pure Delight...Our Snow Day!

Today is "Thankful Thursday" and I am so happy to participate. I am still rejoicing and thanking the Lord for such a fun, joy-filled snow day. The weather man was forecasting snow...a lot of snow....4-6 inches...yes that is a lot of snow in our area of Texas.

Hannah looked at me and said, "Momma, you're wearing your snowflake pajamas tonight, aren't you?" I smiled and said, "of course." My family teases me about my hopes of a white Christmas or a snow day whenever they see me wearing my snowflake pjs but I wear them anyway.

I not only wore them to bed that night, but I wore them outside to capture pictures of the white wonderland the next morning. I put my heavy coat on over it, so I wouldn't embarrass myself in front of the neighbors and topped them off with my snow boots....I looked lovely (yeah right!) or as Hannah exclaimed in pure sarcasm, "Momma, you look hot!" and then she rolled on the floor in laughter. Thank you, baby girl! Wanna see? No, not the whole ensemble, just the snowflake pj's because I snapped a photo of them...fashion at its finest around here:


The snow was so beautiful and so deep so I grabbed a ruler to measure:

My family was inside enjoying the warmth from the fireplace:

And texting and playing games. There is a new app on I-tunes called Words Free with Friends and my girls love to play it. I don't have the heart to tell them that it is really just Scrabble but in a cool new way to play it. They are gaining new vocabulary words and skills, so I will just make that my little secret. My 93 year old grandmother would be so proud. Here are the girls texting and playing...and might I add, looking hot too. LOL!

Mr. Incredible was working from home on his laptop and playing Words with Friends too. I was so happy that he stayed home with us! That is a first. Normally, he braves the weather (it's not like it happens very often) and drives to work anyway. Not this day, and that was pure delight!

When I was outside, I did see one of my neighbors, while I was looking oh so fashionable...but it was my dad, so I was okay. He has seen me look worse, I think....on second thought, maybe not my outfit was pretty horrendous. He has been battling bronchitis but thankfully is feeling much better today. I love having my parents as neighbors...what a blessing.

Look at what is happening in my garden:

I am getting so excited about gardening. This beautiful blanket of snow will provide much needed moisture for my vegetables and flowers....I can hardly wait.

After a yummy breakfast, I made some warm potato soup and begged my family (it really didn't take much begging) to come outside with me. I promised them that I would put on a more respectable outfit...and it worked. Here is Hannah making a snow angel:

And then the little angel got up and fired a snowball at her sister:

who was waiting with her own snowball:





Chloe, my parent's cat braved the cold to walk over and say hello:

My family built a snowman together:

We got a little creative with the hair and eyes:

My girls are beautiful...but the snow creature....I don't know:

It wasn't long before daddy started a snow fight. I had to remind him that Rachel had brain surgery only 3 months ago (another thankful Thursday item~she still is headache free!!!)so he gently rolled her in the snow as Hannah came to her sister's rescue:

He wasn't so gentle with this one...but she can take it...really, she can:

Look at her grab his leg!


I have many more photos; I took over 100 that day...but don't worry, I'm stopping here. It was a delightful snow day. One that will live long in my memory.
Thank you, Father for the pure white delight that blanketed our home and our hearts this week. You are so good to Your children!

Birthday Bulbs....Flowers for my Girls

If you have been following my blog for a little while, you know that I love to garden...I just wish that I had more time to do it. When the girls were little, probably 5 and 1, I planted some bulbs in our flower beds...and much to my delight and surprise, the bulbs bloom every year on their birthdays.

Hannah's Daffodil bulbs almost always bloom on her birthday. But, this year, we have had an unusually cold winter and they didn't bloom on her birthday but a few days later on the day of her birthday party. She was so excited to see her birthday bloom:




Rachel's birthday is a few weeks later, in March, and purple and pink hyacinth bulbs always bloom on her birthday. The green leaves have already emerged and we are looking forward to seeing her birthday bloom in a few weeks.

When we built our house nearly ten years ago, I dug up the birthday bulbs from our other house and transplanted them to our new house and they still bloom every year on their birthdays!

If you have a child with a February or March birthday you should try planting spring bulbs. (Normally you plant the bulbs in the fall, but you can improvise now and buy the plants that have already or are nearly ready to bloom at your local nursery or Home Depot, Lowes, or sometimes Walmart. Plant them now and enjoy birthday bulbs for years to come). They are a delightful birthday surprise each year!

(I am pleased to be posting this at Works for me Wednesday.)


It's a Snow Day...So I'm Feeling Crafty!

I woke up at 5:30 this morning, ran to the window and I saw....SNOW!!!! Yippee! Snow in our part of Texas is a rarity and even though the weather guys had been forecasting snow, I wasn't' holding my breath. One of my fellow teachers called me to let me know that school was cancelled for today. Yippee!!!!

We have 6 inches of glorious snow. I know this is hardly considered accumulation for your northerners but this is pure delight for all of us southerners!

So, I fixed a Pioneer Woman recipe for my family for breakfast, built a ginormous fire, read several blogs, blogged myself (see the awesome French Toast recipe from Gooseberry Patch on my previous post~you will be so delighted if you make it because it is fabulous!!!), watched some of the Olympics with my family, took pictures outside, nearly froze my fingers off and then started thinking about crafting!

I hardly every have time to craft anymore and I lOVE to craft! An unexpected snow day is the perfect day to craft!. I looked at my empty Starbucks cup and the wheels started turning...and then I remembered the sisters at Gooseberry Patch (I've mentioned them 3 times in 1 day and 2 posts but no I am not sponsored by them) who issued a coffee cozy challenge not too long ago.

Hmmmm....here is what I made:

It is easy, peasy. Start with your favorite Starbucks cup (mine is now empty but once contained a delicious Skinny Cinnamon Dulce Latte) and the cardboard sleeve:

Grab some felt and cut about a 1 1/2 to 2" by the length of the felt square (which is about 8 inches). Grab a needle and thread (yes, Mom I so wanted to hot glue this part, but I didn't, aren't you proud?) and loosely stitch the folded felt strip:



Grab your scissors and snip into sections being careful not to cut through the stitch....yes I learned that from experience, oiy!



Carefully pull your thread so that the felt gathers into a circle like this:

And then stitch the ends together. I did the same thing with another piece of felt but this time I made the width about an inch and cut smaller wedges. I gathered the blue piece just like the red one and then stitched the two together:


I added some buttons, and then I grabbed my hot glue gun (Yes, finally) and hot glued the felt cuff together, using the Starbucks sleeve for a pattern, added the flower to cover up the hot glued seams of the cuff and then finished with some more buttons:




And then I made a pink and black one...which is a bit more girly:

I had some left over black polka dot gross grain ribbon so I used that too:



And here is the finished pink and black coffee cozy:


I think they turned out so cute. My coffee cups will now be stylin' in my classroom!
I'm so pleased to link this post at Kimba's DIY party. and Works for me Wednesday.
Ya'll have a blessed day. I think we are headed outside to make a snowman. Woo hoo!

The BEST French Toast!

Kim from Homesteader's Heart blog was featured on Gooseberry Patch's blog! Yes, she was. You can see it by clicking here.

I've been a big fan of GP too. I think my first Gooseberry Patch book is from 1999. I started collecting their Christmas books and then fell in love with their cookbooks. I have many favorite recipes but one of my faves is their Early AM French Toast. I adore french toast but I was having a hard time finding a fabulous recipe...until I opened my GP Christmas, Book 5 where this delicious recipe was waiting for me on page 108! Hello French Toast recipe, I am so happy to find you!

Here is what you need to make this recipe (and you can make it the night before which is pure genius!):

The recipe explains, "In a medium saucepan over medium heat, mix and melt 1 C brown sugar, 1/2 C butter, and 2 T. corn syrup. Spray a baking dish (I used a 13x9) with non-stick vegetable spray (I used Pam), and fill with butter mixture:


Mix 5 eggs, 1 1/2 C milk, and 1 t of vanilla extract. Arrange thickly sliced French bread (I didn't make my own, I bought it from my local HEB) in baking dish:


Pour egg mixture over bread; don't miss any area~use all the mixture. Any extra will be soaked up by the bread. cover dish and refrigerate over night. The next morning, simply uncover and slip into a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes, then serve."


The french toast is divine! I sprinkled mine with a little cinnamon, because I really like cinnamon, some powdered sugar, and a little maple syrup (it doesn't really need syrup because of the caramelized brown sugar and butter mixture).



My family raved about it...and they are not big fans of french toast....but they are now. Thank you, Gooseberry Patch!!!

Hannah's Party was a Hoot!

We survived...and we had an absolute blast!

Friday night, Hannah celebrated her 13th birthday with 8 (one couldn't make it) of her closest friends. The teenagers arrived at our home at 7:00 and stayed until 10:00 am the next morning. They were hyped up and ready to par-tee! Here is the birthday girl waiting for her friends to arrive:

Rachel and I put together little gift bags for her friends. We used the same owl that I created for her invitations:

After the giggly girls all arrived it was time to start the big Scavenger Hunt all over town. I had so much fun planning this. The girls had to read clues to find out where to go, pick up things, take pictures, and search for items. One of the examples was: Go to the place where you "Eat Fresh" and ask for a napkin (of course the answer was Subway).

Another clue was to find a slide at the city park, find out the name of who made the slide and take a group picture. I had a group of 5 and Rachel drove a group of 4 girls. Our team won! Woo hoo!

One of the girls in my group squealed from the back seat of my suburban, "We have only been at the party for 5 minutes and I am already having so much fun! You plan the best parties for Hannah's birthdays!" ...and then I squealed with delight too! They were having fun, just like I hoped and planned that they would (thank you, Heavenly Father).

After both teams finished the scavenger hunt, it was time to eat. Mr. Incredible picked up the pizzas while we all raced around town. When he picked up the pizzas, one of the grandfather's of one of the girls at the party, who knew that we were having an all night party, said, "Now, before you pay for those pizzas, you better go get you some nerve pills because you are going to need them!" Mr. Incredible just smiled!


After pizza, it was time to open gifts.

Hannah LOVES duct tape! She has made several gifts for her friends out of duct tape and she is just sure that when she is a junior in high school, that she will make her dress out of duct tape (did you know there is a scholarship for the winner of the most amazing duct tape prom dress?). She loves duct tape so this is what most of her friends gave her:

She is smiling from ear to ear!

Little did she know that her friends had made plans for a duct tape wedding for Hannah. What?
They planned the whole thing! Hannah's groom? Mr. Duct Tape.
Here are the two masterminds of the duct tape wedding:

2 of the Hannah's bridesmaids:


Ring bearers:

And the carrier of the groom:


Hannah escorted by her father (okay this was fun until now...be still my heart!):
Dum...dum...du...dum:

The minsters...I'm using that word loosely pronounced them Mr. and Mrs. Duct Tape and then she threw her bouquet which was made out of duct tape (poor guy) and silk flowers:

They even made her a duct tape ring:

Ready to catch the bouquet?


Ah, we have a winner....or a runner, I'm not really sure:

They even staged a fight over the bouquet:

And then they made up....the future bride-to-be:


Here is the entire wedding party complete with the groom who fits nicely in the palm of Hannah's hand....I like her style....it's better than wrapping your man around your finger. Ha!

I don't have an explanation for this one:



Or this one....oh okay....maybe Charlie's Angels showed up at the wedding...why not!


The party didn't stop there! Hannah wanted to do 13 things for her 13th party. So, the girls continued with the list by having a wii sing off competition:


They all wanted to sing Lady Gaga or Jonas Brothers or Taylor Swift:


And the winner? The birthday girl!

Then, the 13th birthday tradition! My parents started this with me and I have passed down the tradition to Rachel, on her 13th birthday, and now on to Hannah! It is a beautiful, heart-warming tradition that involves....toilet paper!

Yes, you heard that correctly. For my 13th birthday my parents and I and several of my friends rolled or T-p'd, or wrapped my youth minister's house. It was sOOOOOOO much fun! They picked up flashing detour signs, for-sale signs, and a lot of toilet paper and plastic forks. For you sophisticated people, this means we forked the yard (placed the forks with the tines facing up), wrapped every tree and branch that we could find with toilet paper, and then placed blinking detour signs and for-sale signs all over his yard. I'll never forget my brother, who was having such a great time wrapping the house that he forgot all of the forks that were so carefully placed in the yard, and as we all ran for the car, he stepped on every one. The funny thing was that the youth minister never guessed it was us....even when we confessed later on.

I've never forgotten the fun of that party and I resolved to pass this fun tradition on to my girls on their 13th birthdays too. We did it with Rachel....and Hannah has counted the years until her 13th birthday party tradition.
Here I am passing the tradition to Hannah:

We all wrapped our heads ceremoniously with tp and then took the pinkie promise that we would not tell a single soul what we did....and now here I am confessing to the world. Ha!

Some had never tp'd before. Just look at their faces:



Excitement and anticipation at its finest:

Of course, being the mom that I am, I asked if any of them felt uncomfortable about doing this....yada yada yada....and even mentioned that they didn't have to do this if they didn't want to....to which they all said, rather screamed, "let's go!!!!"

We didn't get caught...yet! The girls were very meticulous about carefully wrapping the trees, and they were the quietest they had been all night. It was fun to whisper, "Here comes a car!" and they all bolted for the suburbans. Mr. Incredible and Rachel drove the getaway cars as the girls giggled all the way home.
Then it was time to really sugar them up. We ordered Gigi's cupcakes:

Those cupcakes are so sweet that they make your teeth hurt....and your sides too from laughing so hard. This one decided that she could shove the entire cupcake in her mouth at one time...and the crowd cheered her on:

After cupcakes, the girls retreated to the game room to put on their pjs and to watch 13 going on 30 and Nacho Libre. Mr. Incredible and I checked on them around midnight. The game room door was closed so we knocked on the door and then opened it only to find a thick, green hazy fog, had filled the game room to capacity...and then the smell infiltrated our nostrils. We both looked at each other and nearly dry heaved! Yes, 9 teenaged girls...who had just taken their shoes off! Whew!

I offered more pizza and lemonade and Cheetos. They all ran for the kitchen as if they hadn't eaten in 3 days....and while they were in the kitchen I turned on the ceiling fan in the gameroom, grabbed my Febreeze and went to spraying....every shoe...every sock....and every corner of that room...and then made a mental note to always, always keep Febreeze around! IT is worth it's weight in gold.

The funny thing about the feet smell is that I had been noticing Hannah's feet were smelling a bit funky and wondering if I might need to have her foot odor checked...but after her party, I have learned that she is very normal and her foot odor is really not nearly as bad as the green haze that came out of the gameroom last Friday night! Oiy!

I checked on the girls several times that night. The last giggle was heard around 5:30. They slept until around 8:30 where I had more sugar waiting....this time in the form of home made chocolate chip/peanut butter pancakes:
By 10:15 all of the girls were headed home...and I was ready for a nap! I hugged Hannah and told her that I think all of her friends had a great time to which she responded by saying, "They did but I had a great time too. Thank you so much, Momma."

Hannah's friends are welcome at our house any time. They are some of the most well-behaved, crazy-fun, creative, and energetic girls that I know. I pray that they always remain close friends-all the way through high school. What a blessing to get to spend time with them this weekend...what a blessing to be a mom of 2 teenagers who enjoy having their friends spend time at our house!