Thursday, September 23, 2010


Nothing says the start of fall like going apple picking with my family!  This year we were lucky to have friends join us!!!  We have been going to Alyson's Orchard in Walpole, NH for the past is so beautiful up there.

We had tons of fun picking apples, climbing trees, and walking through the pumpkin patch.

JUICY apples

Madison loved her apples!!!  She got very upset when she was "appleless"

Zain is so good with her!! 
I wonder...What is she thinking?

Enjoying the deep colors of fall.

There is nothing like the start of fall like the scent of apples baking in the pie, apple crisp, apple crostata...want to make this?  Go Bake and Create with my great friend Avril OR my new personal favorite Apple Dumplings..OH MY I can not believe I have never had these before.  YUM YUM and YUMMMMYYYYY!!!!

So how does this transformation start?  Well, as Zain says, "let me show ya"


  • 1 recipe pastry for double-crust pie (I used store bought Pillsbury dough)
  • 6 large apples, peeled and cored
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F Butter a 9x13 inch pan

On a lightly floured surface, roll pastry into a large rectangle, about 24 by 16 inches. Cut into 6 square pieces. Place an apple on each pastry square with the cored opening facing upward. Cut butter into 8 pieces. Place 1 piece of butter in the opening of each apple; reserve remaining butter for sauce. Divide brown sugar between apples, poking some inside each cored opening and the rest around the base of each apple. Sprinkle cinnamon and nutmeg over the apples.

  1. With slightly wet fingertips, bring one corner of pastry square up to the top of the apple, then bring the opposite corner to the top and press together. Bring up the two remaining corners, and seal. Slightly pinch the dough at the sides to completely seal in the apple. Repeat with the remaining apples. Place in prepared baking dish.

  1. In a saucepan, combine water, white sugar, vanilla extract and reserved butter. Place over medium heat, and bring to a boil in a large saucepan. Boil for 5 minutes, or until sugar is dissolved. Carefully pour over dumplings.

Bake in preheated oven for 50 to 60 minutes.

Right out of the oven...

I can not believe I just transformed a wonderful healthy apple into this SINfully yummy OH so BAD for you treat!  I shouldn't eat anymore but it is calling my name!!!! 

What is YOUR favorite apple transformation?  I'd LOVE to know because I want to take Zak apple picking while he is here this weekend....use MR. Linky at the bottom of the post to share :o)  

I hope you all have a wonderful Fall season and take some time to transform something ;o)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

This photo is over 20 years and my siblings at my grandmothers house.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

The Eye of a Photographer

Photography is the process, activity, and art of capturing moments close to our heart that we never want to forget. 

A friend of mine has the "Eye of a Photographer"  She has been taking pictures of my family for the past few months....her gift is truly amazing!  She is able to capture moments that make my heart melt when I look through the photos

She has inspired me to look at things very differently when I pick up my camera.  The best photos are NOT always the ones that have been posed.....

or have the biggest smiles.....

She has showed me that you can play with different angles and lighting...

Also faces are not the only subject...

I have always love the art of photography and was lucky enough to get a GREAT Sony digital camera years ago....Unfortunately I have never learned how to use it to its fullest potential.  After having a wonderful conversation with my friend I decided to run off to Borders and purchase the book Digital SLR Camera and Photography for Dummies.  I can't wait to learn all about my camera!!!!  Watch out for some "play photos"!!! (I have GREAT subjects!)  If any of you wonderful readers have any tips please feel free to SHARE!!!!

All photos in this post were taken by Kristen Lenox

Friday, September 3, 2010

Z3 is HERE!!!!

Here I am at about 6am on Friday the 13th!  Look at that BABY B E L L Y!! The contractions started on Thursday night around 10:30...they were nothing really at all but it got me excited all the same!  I did the dishes, I got the kids breakfast and lunch out for the next day, I made sure their bags were packed, I made sure MY bag was packed, I rearranged the diaper bag for the 5th time, and I called my mom.  My mom lives 45 minutes from me so we kept going back and forth on the phone...should she come or was this not really it?  She told me to time them and call her back in an hour.  They were very irregular...5 min...8 min....12 min...3 min.  They were getting a little stronger by midnight and she said she was just coming...She would much rather be here for nothing then miss everything.  I also called my friend Jo to tell her what was going on because she was kind enough to come to my house when we went to the hospital so we wouldn't have to wake the boyZZ.  Chris was writing my contraction times down...every time I said YUP he knew I was having another one.....I don't think he REALLY thought this was going to happen.

At 1am my mom pulled in with my 2 sisters as I got out of the shower.  Of course while I was in the shower I felt NOTHING...I started to feel bad that they drove all the way here...then they started again.  I knew we were about to have a L O N G day ahead of us so I decided to go get some sleep, but before I did that I grabbed a poem that was given to me while pregnant for Zain I would love to share it with each of you

These Last Few Hours….

It is important to me
that I spend a part
of the next few hours here
alone with you in the darkness.
You and I
will never be this close again.
By morning
you will be a tiny person
all your own.
No longer the kicking demanding
bulge in my body
that I have grown to love so well.
I pray God will safely guide you
on your journey tonight
and I ask him for the strength
to help you all I can.
Again you signal
your impatience to be free.
Time to wake your Daddy!

I LOVE this poem!!!!  I always give it to my friends who are expecting!  :o)

So sleeping worked on and off till about 4am.  I woke Chris up and he started timing them again....he didn't say one word, just got up got dressed and said call the clinic we are going to leave soon.  We had a bagel (between contractions) let the dogs out, called JoAnn and told my mom and sisters we would call if this was really it.  We finally left the house around 5:30...I was in a little bit of pain now....

When we got there they hooked me up to the monitors and then a wonderful midwife, Jessica, examined me.  almost 5cm!  WAHOO 5 to go.  She told me to walk around the building do some stairs, and maybe a few squats for about an hour then report back by 7.

Squats and stairs I don't think so...I was really in pain at this point...I said labor is the stupidest thing ever!  :o)  I called my mom and told her this was it and please HURRY to the hospital...needed a WOMAN'S support.  LOL  Chris was WONDERFUL!!!!  I just needed someone who knew what I was feeling!  What am I talking about I just needed MY MOTHER!!!!!!!!!!

Chris suggested we walk outside for a little while but I had to keep stopping because the contractions were getting harder and harder.  I was getting a little bit verbal with each one ;o)  not mean...just thinking that this was so very stupid....My mom met us outside before we headed back to the labor and delivery room. When we got back they told us to order breakfast (ya ok I am not in the mood!) I kept running into the bathroom with each contraction, ugh, I hate it when people see me in pain.  My WONDERFUL doula arrived moments after we got back into the room.

What is a doula you ask? explains it perfectly!

The word "doula" comes from the ancient Greek meaning "a woman who serves" and is now used to refer to a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother before, during and just after birth; or who provides emotional and practical support during the postpartum period.
Studies have shown that when doulas attend birth, labors are shorter with fewer complications, babies are healthier and they breastfeed more easily.
A Birth Doula
  • Recognizes birth as a key experience the mother will remember all her life
  • Understands the physiology of birth and the emotional needs of a woman in labor
  • Assists the woman in preparing for and carrying out her plans for birth
  • Stays with the woman throughout the labor
  • Provides emotional support, physical comfort measures and an objective viewpoint, as well as helping the woman get the information she needs to make informed decision
  • Facilitates communication between the laboring woman, her partner and her clinical care providers
  • Perceives her role as nurturing and protecting the woman's memory of the birth experience
  • Allows the woman's partner to participate at his/her comfort level

My doula, who I can now call a friend, was wonderful during my labor.  She arrived about 45 minutes before Zayden made his quick entrance into the world.  She did things for me that I didn't even know I wanted....I will forever be grateful!

I asked to labor in the tub so at about 7:30 they let me get it...I was 7 cm at this point.  I had a few contractions in the tub and then all of a sudden at 7:44ish I felt the need PUSH and there was no stopping it...I have never seen so many people run into a room.  They all got me out of the tub and I started pushing....Chris was ready to deliver this baby!  I pushed 2 thing I know......
6lbs 3 oz
18 1/2 inches
7:48am August 13, 2010

We are so in LOVE all over again!

He just plopped out!  Chris keeps telling me how amazing it was.  He couldn't believe how quickly I did it (neither could I)

My labor was amazing!  I had an easy time with Zain but this was even better!  I couldn't believe it! I was mentally prepared to be in labor for hours and hours...pushing and pushing.  How grateful am I that DIDN'T happen!  I have to thank my MOM for this!!!!  She had all her babies very quickly...thank you for passing this gene on to me :o)

Being with Zayden minutes after he was born will forever be remembered.  My favorite memory is seeing Chris look down at us with tears in his eyes....I love this man so much!  Thank you for giving me a wonderful family!

Zakary and Zain LOVE him so much!!!  Zak kept saying "HE IS SOO CUTE"  He later told my mom that he almost cried when he saw him...and he didn't know why....that made ME cry!  So awesome!  Since being home all Zak wants to do is hold and kiss him....He loves him so much!  It broke my heart the other day when Zak had to go back to his mother's for the new school year.

The hospital plays a lullaby for each child born and it is played throughout the entire hospital and parking lot.  The nurse was nice enough to ask my family if WE wanted to press the button.  Zak and Zain did the honors...I thought that was the coolest thing ever!

The boyZZ then pushed Zayden back to our room. I knew they would be wonderful big brothers....I just didn't know it was going to happen so quickly!

3 weeks has past since Zayden was born and I have so many pictures and stories to share with you.  Having Z3 with us makes our new family of FIVE complete!

I have so much LOVE for my BoyZZZ!!!!!