Sunday, January 31, 2010

Me and My Friends

One of Friday's assignments for Killer was to draw a picture of himself and his best friend.  

Well, as he readily told me, he has more than one best friend.  

Queenie thought to herself that this sounded alright, so she told him to go ahead and draw a picture of all of other instructions were given.  

After being presented with the finished product, Queenie couldn't help but giggle at several things that she noticed in Killer's drawing of, what he considers to be, his best friends.

1.  Take a gander at those big ol' red ears on F.B.!  (Killer must have heard the doc last week mention his brother's "red ear".....and noticed the medicine that quickly followed)  A 4 year old's idea of an ear infection.  

2. Killer is GIGANTIC and everyone else is tiny.  Hmmmm...a little self-absorbed, perhaps?  

3. There are no girls to be seen, ANYWHERE.  Not his mommy, not Baby Bee, no-one.  

4. At this point Queenie, in her mind, is laughing absolutely uncontrollably at Killer's take on the subject.  Outwardly, though, she commends him- on a job very well done. 

Gotta love kindergarten!  

Beeism of the Day

A few days ago, Queenie and the 3 bees made a 100Yen Store (Daiso) trip.  For all you state-side readers, Daiso is the equivalent to an American Dollar Store, only (in Queenie's opinion) MUCH better.  

Upon arriving at Daiso, Queenie found out that they were discontinuing their great line of wooden magnetic trains (similar to the magnetic Thomas the Train line, but only 100Yen- roughly $1.00 a comparison to the much more expensive Thomas line).  F. Bumble and Killer adore them (Daiso trains), and Queenie stocked up with about $12 worth of trains, cabooses, and little wooden accessory houses.  

Meandering back up to the checkout line, Killer spotted a leopard print headband in the accessory department. 

Killer (in absolute rapture): "Look!  Mama!  It's sooooooooooooo beautiful!  It's for girls!"

Queenie (with a smile and slightly raised eyebrows): "Ummm.....yes, Killer- it's for girls.  You like that?"

Killer:  "'s so pretty.  It looks like Pickles!"

F. Bumble: "LOOOOOK!  It's like my Pickles!!!  Soooooo ootifull!"

Now, it must be explained here, that "Pickles" (comes from American English, Freckles) is F. Bumble's pet leopard.  His pet stuffed leopard, that is. In the eyes of the the 2 boy bees, that headband was just the most sophisticated and elegant thing they had ever seen.  They insisted that I purchase it for Baby Bee and I...... 

Queenie smiled at their earnest excitement and thoughtfulness- but cringed, just a tiny bit- because she is not a fan of animal prints like zebra or leopard in the slightest way.  The only exception is a fabulous handmade pony-print bag she bought from a friend a few months back...but THAT animal print is more "Wild West" and less "Wild Jungle", which is a look that Queenie just can't pull off, no matter how hard she tries.  

At any rate, Queenie's knee-jerk reaction didn't last more than 5 seconds- Killer and F. Bumble's sweet excitement at the headband could not be contained, and their request was much too charming to deny.  

Queenie herself was so charmed by their thoughtfulness, she fully expected to sport the headband herself- but couldn't because it was much too small. you readers can see below, Baby Bee was the recipient of a most fashionable headband- courtesy of her two big brothers.  

Monday, January 25, 2010

'Cause bees just wanna have fun....

Who says you can't take your toddlers out on a fun outing?  Queenie braved the station's bowling alley with Killer, F. Bumble, and Baby Bee last night for one (repeat: ONE) round of bowling.  There was only one "ball slide" (what the boys like to call the contraption for kiddos that has a lever to push the ball down the lane) available, and of course- ours was broken. No worries, Queenie buzzed back and forth between the parked stroller (Baby Bee was fascinating with the rotating disco lights) and helping whomever had the turn at the moment.  It was an experience....but boy, did it make some memories.  This post is merely for your enjoyment and encouragement if you are stuck at home with multiple (small!) kiddos, you CAN get out and do something different.........if only for an hour.  After bowling, Queenie drove the 3 Bees home, promptly tucked the bees into their beds, and called it a night.




Saturday, January 23, 2010

Happenings from the Hive

Well, DH isn't going to be around our cozy (if only because of it's occupants) hive much in the near future, due to an all-encompassing situation we like to call The United States Marine Corps.  It's me and the 3 bees for a while.

So far, we've done alright- not counting the Ergo baby carrier strap lost in the MCX  (*gasp* Queenie's extra appendage isn't functioning!!!), Killer and F.Bumbles' constant need to compete and sting at each other, or the way our grocery bill just seems to get higher and higher. (Can I get a witness?!)

At any rate, the Lord is good to us, and I am thankful that the constant runny noses due to F.Bumble AND Baby Bee teething at the same time seem to finally, after almost 3 entire weeks, be drying up..........albeit it slowly.  Runny noses don't sound serious....but being up every 30 minutes all night with one or the other of them due to tender gums and crankiness (for 3 weeks!!!) is a bit much for any Mama Bee!  Thankfully, all 3 bees slumbered soundly through the night last night.

Simple things......bring Queenie much joy!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Something I LOVE

While cuddled up in my pj's and sipping a mug of warm Royal Milk Tea in the evenings, one of my favorite blogs to browse and snag ideas from is: These Favorite Things

As much as I LOVE their reviews, they are not the reason for my latest post.  THIS shop (which was reviewed on the above blog) is:  EShakti

They allow to you customize the neckline AND sleeves of ALL their dresses!!!  Could it get any more exciting, ladies?!  I know I'm not the only one who sees a fabulous fabric, only to be turned off at the site of a neckline that is......*ahem*.....less than flattering?  These dresses are darling, sophisticated, and reasonable for even our pay-scale's occasional splurge.  Just thought I'd share it- it was too good to keep to myself!

Enjoy, ladies!  ;)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010 least it wasn't rap!

Hafta admit, this is a mighty tempting crime when our neighbor's surround sound system vibrates our apartment at 11PM on weeknights.... We've also thought about possibly broadcasting blue grass hymns, with the patio door open.  (Haven't done either, out of Christian love and forgiveness....but we have been tempted!)  On the other hand, Queenie found it quite humorous that it might be possible to "Rock Out" to John Denver.

Rocking Out to................John Denver?!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Top 10 Things No Child Has Ever Died From

Queenie found several of these quite hilarious. 
Taken from an autumn edition of Parenting: Early Years Magazine.

Wildlife Coloring Pages

Long winter days stuck inside with 3 little bees who are constantly teething, catching something, teething again, and then catching something yet again- Queenie has been required to be thrifty and creative when it comes to keeping them busy.  One of her favorite things to do is print the older two bees out a new coloring page from what she is sure they think is a magical computer/printer, because just about everything can appear from there!

This is an all-encompassing website that has hundreds of quality coloring printables for kids.  Queenie's favorite section is  the wildlife, but "Art by Dan" has also posted several cartoon characters as well.

The wildlife pictures are Queenie's favorite because she also likes to pair the coloring page with a free you-tube wildlife lesson.  (Parents PLEASE view the video prior to inviting your child to watch with you, to make sure it's what you think it is)  For example, after inquiring about a certain animal, Killer and F. Bumble can color the picture, but then see a live-action video on YouTube.  Last week's favorites in our hive: Wolves and Seahorses.  A random coupling to be sure, but the wolves came from, well, 2 boys who were curious.  The seahorse request came because Baby Bee has a seahorse teether, both Killer and F.B. were dieing to know how the seahorse could swim- because they "don't have no wings like fishes".  Queenie even had to admit that the seahorse YouTube videos were amazing.

A free trip to an exotic aquarium, right in our own living room.  Hope you enjoy these wildlife pages as much as we did!  We also hope it will encourage you to possibly use YouTube as a wonderful educational tool!

(to use the coloring page, simple curse over the picture, copy, paste into Word or another software so you are able to enlarge the picture, and then print!  Simple!)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Beeism of the day

So, our popcorn popper finally arrived from Wally World.  SO excited to have fresh popped corn.  It wasn't the brand I wanted to get (whirly pop), but the Rival one that came at least looks like it will do the job properly.  ANYTHING beats the microwave stuff we've been making.

Killer was excited about the box- I told the three kiddie bees on our way home from the P.O. (post office) that it contained the popcorn maker. I deposited the box on the floor when we finally got up to our apartment.  After changing Baby Bee's nappy, I entered the living room to find Killer opening the box with little kiddie sheers- just like his papa tearing into a box with his pocket knife!  I just held back a smile, and said,

Queenie: "Whatcha doin'?"

Killer: "I setting this up."

........15 minutes later, he had the popcorn popper assembled, and set up on the counter.

A few hours later, I went to find the directions on making the actual popcorn.  I scrounged around the box and trash from the packaging.....couldn't find the directions ANYWHERE!

Queenie: "Killer, any idea where the words that tell us how to do this are?"

Killer: "Yes- I trew dem away because we need to do it ourself."

Hmmmmm.....................that sounds suspiciously like his father!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Cooking for kids: hints and tips

Well, this blogging thing is a new endeavor for me, so I think it's alright to post something (again) that I wrote awhile ago, because I'm sure it's new to most of you!  Also, you may find it helpful....or at least perhaps it'll inspire some kiddie food creativity.

Cooking for kids: hints and tips

by: queenie the bee, for

With two little boys of my own, I know how important quick and easy meals are to a person's daily life. Nutrition is one of the most important factors in the meals that I prepare for my two sons. It is a common, but misconstrued assumption that nutritious meals are not kid-friendly, or even worse- that they are unpalatable. Neither of these misconceptions takes into account that preparing meals with whole foods such as real cheese, real milk, and real veggies can taste scrumptious, but are also great for growing kids' bodies.
Nutrition for children is extremely important because their minds and bodies are growing at an exceptional rate every day. Adults are habitual worriers when it comes to their weight, but we need to remember that things like fat can actually be beneficial to our bodies, in the correct amounts. The trick comes with what type of fat your little ones are consuming. We all know to steer clear of trans fats, of course, but do you know which cooking oil to choose if one is not listed specifically in a recipe? Most would guess extra virgin olive oil, which is definitely better than some other oils! The answer is actually canola. Canola oil contains healthy fatty acids that actually raise good cholesterol . Of course, as parents, we try to do everything we can to give our children the best possible care for later on in their adult lives.
Chasing little ones around does not leave much time for preparation work, so I have assembled here two lunchtime menus that can be used for any age child. Cooking and preparing lunchtime meals for a baby as well as a toddler can quickly start feeling like you are the chef/waitress/cashier/bus boy at a short-order cafe. Filling little tummies with a simple, yet nutritious lunch can help the rest of your day's "adventure" go much smoother. All of these ingredients can be found at your local grocery store. For the most part, I have tried to use whole foods in addition to healthy snacks that are readily available. I have listed ingredients in portion sizes for a 6-12 month old baby, as well as for an average toddler (1-3 years old). These are actual portion sizes that I use with my boys.

Rich in: Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Folic Acid, Protein, Fiber, Potassium, Iron
BABY: Take 1 slice multi-grain bread. Spread about a tablespoon of natural or organic peanut butter on one side. Add pureed banana spread to the peanut butter. Fold in half and cut into tiny squares. Serve with pureed carrots or squash. Finish the meal with leftover pureed banana. Be sure to supervise baby eating his peanut butter sandwich squares!
TODDLER: Take 1 slice multi-grain bread. Spread about a tablespoon of natural or organic peanut butter on one side. Drizzle natural, no sugar added, honey on the peanut butter. Fold in half. Serve with chopped organic baby carrots (or for older toddlers, whole baby carrots) and a banana (sliced for younger toddlers)
Rich in: Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Protein, Fiber, Omega 3, Omega 6
BABY: Slice 1 ripe avocado in half, and cut one part into tiny squares. Store the other half of the avocado with the pit inside a zip lock bag for tomorrow. Be sure to keep the pit inside, because it helps the avocado stay fresher. Cut the remaining half into tiny squares and serve to baby (with a bib, of course!) Meanwhile, cut some natural cheddar cheese into tiny squares that baby will be able to grasp, roughly 1/3 inch square. Serve with a mix of mashed sweet potatoes and plain organic yogurt. To save time, prepare more than one serving of sweet potatoes at a time. Steaming or baking both work well. Mash the remaining sweet potatoes, and freeze in small plastic containers to thaw for later use.
TODDLER: Slice 1 ripe avocado in half, and set one part aside. Follow above directions for storing the other half of the avocado. With the remaining half, puree the avocado into a healthy guacamole. If desired, add a small amount of plain organic yogurt instead of sour cream to make the guacamole more creamy. This adds calcium and wonderful probiotics that aid in your toddler's digestion. Pull out a few more baby carrots, and let the toddler dip away with his very own guacamole. You could even come up with a fun name for guacamole, if that just sounds too gourmet for your little foodie. "Green Goo" might go over well for a 4 year old boy! (again, my only solid food experience is with boys, so maybe a little girl wouldn't appreciate that) Serve with melted natural or organic cheddar cheese over whole wheat Ritz or saltine crackers. (yes, they do exist!)

These are just a couple of ideas that you may have already tried, but weren't aware of the rich nutrients you were feeding your growing child. There are many resources available that make it easy to find the exact nutrients in all of our common foods. Teach your little one healthy eating habits early, and they'll grow to prefer it later on in life.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Free Casserole e-book

These chilly winter days and nights, do you ever get tired of the same casserole or stand-by crock pot stew?  (well, maybe not tired- just......wanting some new slow cooker inspiration?) Check out this FREE Betty Crocker casserole and slow cooker meals cookbook.  All you need is a free account with Dinner Made Easy....then type in your email to verify for your free cookbook!  Enjoy the yumminess. 

Free Casserole and Slow Cooker ebook

The Buzz

So.... I wonder what's next?  I hope this twist on imminent domain doesn't set a precedent! LOL If so, anything that anyone has ever rescued from being thrown out is hanging in the balance!   
 The Battle of Davy Crockett......and his marriage license

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Front Porch

I don't have one of these at the moment (for some reason, a concrete slab extending 3 feet from our kitchen sliding door in our apartment doesn't quite give me the same warm fuzzies), but I can still daydream, right?
The following is a poem I wrote about two years ago, when our family first moved overseas to our current duty station. 

The Front Porch
by: queenie the bee

Whitewashed floorboards,
creaking with time,
a lifetime of winters
has weathered its pine.

'Twas nailed with a song,
pure love was spilt-
it's steps now echo
the one who built.

Tiny feet scamper,
while older ones creep.
Both embracing
the joy to reap.

Plain is this link
between nature
and man, wooden
gateway to hearth.

Beeism of the Day

“Minty and Miko Mouse”



In reference to the classic Disney characters… this little boy must be living in Japan or something!




Monday, January 4, 2010

Herb Chicken with Honey Butter

Thanks to Simple and Delicious (November/December 2009), we enjoyed this fantastic chicken- served up with baked potatoes and a green salad.  Here in the Pacific, it is a special occasion when we eat potatoes!  Hard to believe for a bee raised in the midwest, but at $8.00 a bag, you gotta watch your grocery bill!  

At any rate, this dish would be equally yummy with crusty french bread or a pasta side.  Hope you enjoy it as much as we did- Killer asked for 2nds.......and then 3rds!  He thought the "hunny better" was a novel idea that Queenie needed to repeat sometime in the near future.  

I served the leftover honey butter drizzled over toast the next morning.  

(if the text of this recipe is too small, just click on it and it will open up a new screen.  The text expands so large- Grandma Moses would be able to read it)

Simple and Delicious Magazine

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Hive Directory

Would you like hunny with that?

Hungry this mornin’?  Come on over to the Hive- we’re servin’ up hot steaming bowls of email (F.B.’s attempt at oatmeal) with leftover green and red white chocolate chips from Christmas.  Trying to keep the Christmas spirit up at least another week…..or until I run out of red and green accents for baked goods... perhaps an after-Christmas yogurt parfait will be served up later on today. 

Saturday, January 2, 2010

First helping from the honey jar

Solitude- it's so peaceful, and I savor it, sitting here in my not-usually quiet military-issue apartment. All three children sleeping cozily in their beds.....well, truthfully, not beds- Baby Bee is slumbering in her pack and play (no room for a crib in here!), Killer is tucked into his makeshift trundle under the IKEA toddler bunk we brought over from the States....F.B. is sleeping in the aforementioned bunk, with the ladder turned snugly to the wall- quite a cozy little nest. Children are never so beautiful as when they are sleeping soundly, after a long day of adventures....or misadventures, for that matter! (it's been misadventures for F.B. as of late, cue the ladder flush against the wall)  Baby Bee is teething- nothing that the almighty Tylenol can't handle, though. As much as I appreciate the old-fashioned remedies of the pioneers, I am thankful to God that we have moved on past the "shot of rum in the bottle" remedy of soothing a cranky infant!  (or is that "shot of whiskey" in the bottle?)

Many thanks to you, O Faithful Readers, (who, although I love them dearly, I am hoping are not just my mother and sisters!)  for visiting my newly built, hopefully surviving, hive of a blog.  : ) (Okay, I've facebooked too long.  It was impossible for me to get through two paragraphs without typing a keyboard smilie.  I can't help it!  I'm smiling!)

I'm exhausted, and we have a huge day tomorrow, made huger by the fact that I'm toting all 3 busy bees to church by myself.  Not an unusual occurance, it just takes plenty of scouting, gathering, and structuring to make it out that front door on time in the morning.  And that's if everything goes like it's meant to- I must leave 15 or so minutes leeway in case F.B. decides he'd like to make another tunnel on the inner legs of his clean pants (too much juice at breakfast?), Killer thinks giving a private concert on mom's piano for the entire midrise floor would be a good idea, or Baby Bee wants to choose that exact moment- that pivotal moment when the whole happy bumble bee family is opening the front door- to projectile her morning snack all over Queenie's pinafore.  Not exactly, but pretty close.  Minus the pinafore.