“We Forgot Your Shrooms!”

For years I had heard people talk about Morel mushrooms and never thought much more about them. This year our great neighbor Stacey explained them us and how yummy they are, and how people haven’t figured out how to grow them so they are a true delicacy. So when I saw one a walk through the neighborhood I send her a photo of it. We joined her as we went to go pick it. That Morel turned out to be a porcelain decoration (picture of it below). It was a sad day.

The kids and I (Brian) went hunting down trails near our home and found nothing. Then my friend Craig told me more about these Morels over lunch and I’ve found myself looking for them every place I went, even while jogging in Mississippi and I’ve found nothing.

Then Sunday morning I hear shouted across the sanctuary before the service, “Brian, we forgot your shrooms!” Which made me laugh cause it definitely sounded like these shrooms might be for getting high. The real reason people are obsessed with them here is once they’ve been fried up they are sooooooo good!

Our friends had gotten us a bag of these Morels and shared a recipe for us to follow. So here is the process to eating these midwest truffles.

Step One: Look at them, so weird looking.

Morels in Manhattan Kansas

Step Two: Wash them to get any loose leaves and what not off them.

Morels in Manhattan Kansas

Step Three: Cut the bigger ones in half. I was really surprised to find they were hollow, they feel solid when holding them.

Morels in Manhattan Kansas

Step Four: Ask someone who won’t burn the house down to fry them after dipping in egg mixture and coating in flour.

Morels in Manhattan Kansas

Step Five: Be patient cause if you reach into the oil you’ll fry your own hand.

Morels in Manhattan Kansas

Step Six: Eat and then remember to let your children try them despite your hoping they won’t like them so you won’t have to share any.

Morels in Manhattan Kansas

They don’t taste like fried mushrooms I’ve had as an appetizer at restaurants and while I can’t think of anything to compare them to, they taste amazing. I finally understand why adults act like children playing Pokemon Go every Spring when the short growing season begins. Thank you Clines for providing this new Manhattan experience with us.

Just normal shenanigans…

I don’t even know how to explain this one

Or this one

I have a love/hate relationship with napkins. I love that they love them, but some days I’m all out of ideas. That’s when I enlist Brian to help:

Or Berkley, who drew Beckham Zelda from heart


Becks read something in a book about “Bubble Tea” and said “I wish that was a real thing and I could try bubble tea.” Well Bubbie, in this case, your dreams have come true!

This cat comes inside in the morning and goes straight to SP’s bed to crash. 

I’m not a fan of Little Debbie snacks, but the kids always ask for them anyways. They went on sale, each box for $1, so I went ahead and bought one of each and we had a taste test!

Sundays are for baking and dressing weird?

It’s so true. Kids just want the box.

We have the STEEPEST hill that leads to the creek by our house. These 3 went exploring and then called me to come drive them up the hill. But they were so muddy they weren’t allowed in the car. Our solution was to drive them home like this: 

Jiffy Pop day!


Berkley asked me to buy more glue gun sticks and tape and I told her to write me a reminder note. Here’s what I got: (it says “snort”)

March 2017

Then you “open” the paper plate card to this:

March 2017

Beckham’s soccer game isn’t riveting for the girls, so they made a friend and played Barbies!

  March 2017

Arts and crafts class face painting (insert that emoji of the bug eyes…)

 March 2017

Beckham and I were waiting for the orthodontist and playing on SnapChat. We were peeing our pants at some of the filters!

  March 2017

Although this was my fav…how I do get eyelashes like that??

March 2017

St Patty’s Day Shenanigans

If we learn that green food coloring is harmful, the Hough house is in trouble. We had A LOT during St Patty’s week. “Green everything!” was the motto! So if it wasn’t green naturally, I dyed it. Problem solved.

Real St Paddy's Day Cupcakes for Small Group tonight.

First stop on real St Patrick’s day: Varsity for green donuts. Except Berkley the party pooper who doesn’t like raised donuts or icing.

Next stop: Library, where they had a fun craft!

They also had a Beauty and the Beast craft time. This pic weirds me out.

And Beckham climbed the wall. Random. Yet impressive.

Then some other random stops for photo ops.

We wish they would cut that tree down! It’s such a cool painting and it’s half covered. Sad story.

Welded welder welding a welded mailbox…

Then rode bikes to the parade!

Berkley packed a BOOK to read. Nerd.

We saw lots of friends in the parade! That’s always our favorite part!!     

T-Rex on a bike gets me every time!

Yet so does anything in a parade with a toilet in it…

Beckham climbed more walls…


I can’t take these guys anywhere…


Sadie Piper’s Skip Day

Day started off with Varsity donuts

Sadie Piper Skip Day

Sadie Piper Skip Day

and Apples to Apples!

Sadie Piper Skip Day

Then we hit up the mini golf course.

March 2017

None of us has ever been to the one in town before, so that was a fun adventure!

March 2017

March 2017

Brian kept score so the loser could “buy lunch” (that would be me!)

March 2017

That was a hole in one!

  March 2017

We also threw in a little light rock climbing!

March 2017

The other option SP had was FootGolf. Which is exactly what is sounds like- golf with a soccer ball. They have one hole you can try it out on so we did. (Fun, but more for adults and soccer players). So we skipped that…

Sadie Piper Skip Day

…in favor of the batting cages!

Sadie Piper Skip Day

She has THE BEST “brace for impact” face!

Sadie Piper Skip Day

Brian can’t go to the cages without getting in on the fun!

Sadie Piper Skip Day

Lunch at Chick-fil-a. This girl knows what she likes and rarely branches out!

(I obviously thought we were making funny faces, but SP gave her cute smile…oops)  Sadie Piper Skip Day

Then straight to the bowling alley! She loved it!

Sadie Piper Skip Day

Bowling rolled right into a milkshake from Baskin Robbins!

Sadie Piper Skip Day

Then to pick up the Bs from school, and poor girl was again the middle child! 🙂

My newest obsession

I make fun of Brian for getting stuck on things…but it’s actually one of my favorite things about him. You wanna know about NASCAR, random baseball facts, the history of soda, the different types of bicycles, -the list goes on- he’s your guy.

But recently it’s my turn to get obsessed.

With this:

Screen Shot 2017-04-17 at 2.04.59 PM

This Garmin Vivofit Jr went on super sale right after Thanksgiving, so we got one for Becks for his birthday. I thought it would be fun mostly for him. I think I love it even more than he does though!

Best parts: it’s waterproof AND the battery lasts a year. This means he never has to take it off, which in turn means he never has to forget to put it back on! It counts steps, but it also counts “activity minutes.” So at his 11 year well check when the nurse asked if he gets 60 minutes of play time a day, I could tell her with certainly, “actually he does!”

March 2017

It has a fun game on the app that he collects facts and animals for every day he hits 60 min of active time and I thought he may be too old for that, but he really loves it (this is also due to his love for animals though)!

AND it also tracks sleep, automatically. This is probably where I’m most obsessed.  I can look and see how he slept every night. So when the doctor asked how much sleep he gets at night, I could also tell him that.

March 2017

Yet another great feature: it has a timer on it. I can tell him, “set your timer for 5 minutes and then we are heading out” or “read for 30 minutes, set your watch.” Brilliant I tell you. I’m actually shocked that this is the only kid activity tracker out there. It seems like an untapped market. Kudos to Garmin!!


Saturday Adventure

On warm days we adventure outside. On cold days we huddle inside and wonder what we should do today.

But this day it was warm, so we headed out!

First stop, the Manhattan signmanhattan_hill

But instead of driving up to it we heard there was a hiding trail.

Rocky Ford Fishing Area

Not gonna lie, it was a tad steeper than we anticipated. Our kids were old enough, but don’t take littles on this one.

Rocky ford fishing

Then we went fishing. Yes, it was only like 70 degrees and yes it was March, but you can’t let that stop you.

Rocky Ford Fishing Area

And yes, we didn’t catch a single thing.


Lucky for us, that wasn’t really the point!


Brian and I have a deal: I don’t help with fishing. (it’s more of an unspoken “rule” in that really by the very fact that I can’t carry the container of worms cause it gives me the eebies thinking about live worms crawling in there…eek…that he just does it all for the kids and I just watch.)

It’s a good deal.

If you are me.

Which I am.

  Rocky ford fishing

They are sweet to each other when they aren’t fighting with each other…

 Rocky ford fishing


Rocky Ford Fishing Area  Fishing

What is Berkley doing?? Pretending she caught a big fish maybe?

 Rocky ford fishing

“Smile Berkley!!”

 Rocky ford fishing

“Keep your pole to yourself Berkley”


This is as good as we are going to get:

Rocky ford fishing

Funny Book

It’s no secret Brian is the fun parent in this house. We were discussing that one day and he asked the kids “What do you call the not fun parent?” To be clear, he was looking for a TERM. (As in, “the opposite of ‘fun parent’ is…’un-fun parent’ or ‘anti-fun parent'”)

The kids all simultaneously immediately said, “Mom!”

After a glare from me and repressed giggles from Brian, he clarified. “No, I mean what’s the word for the not fun parent?”

There was quiet for a few seconds and then they all chimed back in, “Yeah, still ‘Mom.'”


Yet I agree with these wise words:

“Let me let you in on a little secret . When I met your dad I was fun too, but I had to give all that up because you can’t have two fun parents. It’s a carnival.”

Our Chick-fil-a hosts Daddy Daughter date nights once a year. Last year Brian took both the girls together, and he said next time it would be better if he utilized both nights they offer and take the girls separately. He took Sadie Piper the first night and then told Berkley she was going the next night. Berkley asks, “Are we going to daddy daughter date night, or are we just going to eat at Chick-fil-A?” Poor girl thought SP got the real date and he was just pretending for Berkley. She wasn’t upset, just curious!

 Chick-fil-a date night   Date night

Chick-fil-a date night

Chick-fil-a date night

“I can spell Anastasia. A-n-a…s-t-a…never mind.”
-Beckham (on accident we chose a middle name for Berkley that’s impossible to spell. Sorry ’bout that.)

SP asked her Sunday school class for prayer for Dory (she went outside weeks ago and we haven’t seen her since). Then she said “never mind, we didn’t really like her.”

Laura: “You sure love cuddles Berkley.”

Berkley: “Yeah. I like the song ‘Touch me like you do'”

Oh. my.

Big box became break dance stage!

“Idaho!! {insert lots of giggles} It sounds like a bad word, or an inappropriate body part!”  -Beckham

Becks: it was my idea to use a tennis racket for an oar.
SP: It was my idea to use the broken one
Berkley: I didn’t have an idea!

I mean, I guess you have to appreciate the lengths she went to to pretend to be a dragon. But did it really have to be on a school night after her bath??

Boo green face

Boo green face

Boo green face

I kicked them all outside. They made personal tents and were reading in them.   

Brian- “This is like space vacuum weather.”

Laura- “What does that even mean??”
He then went on to explain and I had to ruin his new phrase by letting him in on the fact that we already call that “room temperature”



You can see the field our house backs up to in this picture. The field means endless possibilities…for Mr Nubbers to hunt. When he catches something he plays with it, throwing it up, swatting it around. It’s pretty entertaining. Hence why SP just went ahead and pulled up a chair for the show!

Feb 2017

His catch: a mole and a bird.

Feb 2017

Beckham’s school planner. Calling it like it is apparently: Feb 2017

Went to the public library’s annual book sale. And girls came home and played…wait for it…BOOK SALE! Feb 2017

Bottom braces: check!

Feb 2017

We are toilet paper snobs around here. Which is ironical cause I’m cheap and you are literally flushing this money down the toilet, but it is what it is. So in an effort to be cheaper, I bough Charmin…BASIC. Don’t let the name brand fool you like it did me. It’s one ply. Which didn’t go over well here.

Feb 2017

Berkley’s “If I were president…” interesting choices.

Feb 2017

Girls have commandeered this wall, so who knows what will be taped up there next, but this one was impressive!

Texas eggs just taste better.
Feb 2017

As does purple cauliflower!!

Feb 2017

SP and I need to discuss what pose we are doing…I feel like we missed each other.

Sunday School Spring 2017