Monday, October 28, 2013

Ain't nobody got time for that!

How ironic that my blog is called Carys & Charlie, yet I have no time for it lately because of... Carys & Charlie! Oh well, life has been crazy busy lately and as much as I wish I could stay up late working on my blog, those times are now reserved for either preparing lessons, finishing Bible studies, or watching my favorite shows on Netflix and zoning out! Here are some pictures of life from the last couple months...

We've been up to lots of letter crafts....

 Since the school room is finally done and we love it!

Picking some pumpkins of course...

and we went to an apple orchard and made our own cider...

 Oh yeah, and we kind of went to the Big Island of Hawaii! Needless to say, it was awesome... 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Chili & Cornbread

Fall is coming! 

No, not this kind...

This kind!...

OK, really, this kind...
ahhhh...that's better!

Except it still feels like a nasty, humid summer here, so can someone send Southern California the memo pretty please? Thanks. 

In honor of the new season, I am sharing two wonderful recipes I came across recently....chili and cornbread of course!
On our camping trip a couple weeks ago, I brought this chili and it was met with great satisfaction by everyone, so I think it is share-worthy. The recipe is adapted from Pioneer Woman, I just changed a couple things, like adding a lot more tomato sauce, and using black beans instead of pinto. I also used ground turkey and it was not lacking at all for taste. So I imagine with ground beef it would be even richer. Please note that I don't like my chili super spicy and this was just right. So add a little more cayenne if you are crazy like that. Or just be like my husband and add Tapatio to every single thing put in front of you.

Simple, Perfect Chili

2 pounds ground beef or ground turkey
2 cloves garlic, chopped
32 oz. tomato sauce
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 cup masa harina (corn flour, found in the Mexican food section of many supermarkets)
15 oz. can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
Shredded Cheddar, for serving

Place the ground beef in a large pot and throw in the garlic. Cook over medium heat until browned. Drain off the excess fat, and then pour in the tomato sauce, chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt and cayenne. Stir together well, cover, and then reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. If the mixture becomes overly dry, add 1/2 cup water at a time as needed.

After an hour, place the masa harina in a small bowl. Add 1/2 cup water and stir together with a fork. Dump the masa mixture into the chili. Stir together well, and then taste and adjust the seasonings. Add more masa paste and /or water to get the chili to your preferred consistency, or to add more corn flavor. Add the beans and simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with shredded Cheddar, chopped onions, tortilla chips and lime wedges.

Original recipe by Pioneer Woman, found here.

(this recipe was also altered from the original and I love the way it came out)

2 boxes Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix
2/3 cup milk
2 eggs
1 8 oz. can cream corn
1/2 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 350, and grease 9x13 pan
Stir together Jiffy mix, milk, and eggs.
Mix in cream corn and sugar. Pour batter into pan.
Bake for 30 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean.

Serve the chili over a piece of cornbread with cheddar cheese on top. Or put the cornbread on top, why not, just be yourselves people!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

This was Summer 2013....

clowning around with my family in the backyard...

 Feeling loved on my 35th birthday with my BFF and lots of others!...

filling up this pool again and again and....

celebrating the 4th with yummy food and great friends in Seal Beach...

fireworks and scaring the bejeezus out of the girls....

having the W. cousins visit from Alaska and taking the chance for a photo shoot....

Idaho reuniting these cousins and making memories....

my husband growing an epic beard and then shaving it off...

watching Nathan's brother Adam get married to Whitney, and Carys being a flower girl...

first camping trip with the girls, and definitely not the last!...

loving God's creation and feeling blessed!!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

This Little Piggy...

I love these bookends for the kitchen to put cookbooks between. After all, when I look at  a cute little pig, I think only one thing...bacon! Haha well they are pretty cute, sorry little piggies. Why is bacon so good....

Like this one, delicious no-fail, although mostly belly building recipes

or this one, be an easy breezy entertainer like Ina, parfaits anyone?

I don't have this book yet, but it looks fabulous. And hello again little piggy!

Monday, August 12, 2013

I Love Rifle

No not rifles! Though that would make my husband very happy...I mean Rifle Paper Co. which has the most beautiful vintage style cards, stationery, and other goodies.

Rifle Paper Co

1) Hmm, well looky here, I needed a new one of these anyway! - Iphone case, $32  
2) This poster is so adorable, especially for a boys room I think - Animal Alphabet Chart, $50 
3) Loving all the images in this fun calendar...would also be great just to frame the prints - 2014 Travel America Calendar, $26 
4) Very true...and I am so obsessed with this card and I already ordered it to frame and add to our gallery wall Greeting Card, $4.50

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Back to School

The last couple weeks my mind has been filled with homeschool business. I've been planning to do it for some time now, and I can't believe Carys is really going to start kindergarten at the end of the month!

I can honestly say that I know the Lord has called me to homeschool, and He has confirmed it in so many ways. This is probably the first time I can say without any doubt that He is calling me to do something specific, something big. It is a very cool feeling actually, because I know that however it goes, that God will be in our midst. There is so much comfort in that.

We will be doing a classical Christian program called Classical Conversations, and I am also enrolling with a public charter school to keep me accountable and have additional curriculum. I am planning to keep God as the center of my children's education, knowing that He is the center of everything and that He can be and is revealed in every subject. We shouldn't be afraid of science or philosophy, in fact we should be pursuing them as they can deepen our faith in Him. In fact, the Bible encourages us to reason with one another. 
My main goal for kindergarten this year is to establish the habit of schooling with her and of course teaching her how to read would be nice too. There will still be lots of playing and exploring and having fun, it is still just kindergarten after all!

I already know that our homeschool journey is not going to be perfect. It is going to have roadblocks and frustrations and freak outs, but I also expect it to be filled with joy, growing in our faith, growing closer as a family, and encouraging a love for learning. I am also writing this so I can come back and read it when I am frustrated, and remember that this is why I am doing it, and it is all going to be worth it in the end!

"Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus"
Philippians 1:6

Me and my favorite 5 year old

And of course this sweet girl will be along for the ride too!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Let the Darkness Fear

Christian radio tends to overplay a lot of the same songs around these parts. Well this one I wouldn't mind hearing all the time! It's a bit, dare I say it, Mumford meets on fire for Jesus.
This song puts a smile on my heart, I hope it does for you too.

Build Your kingdom here
Let the darkness fear
Show Your mighty hand
Heal our streets and land
Set Your church on fire
Win this nation back
Change the atmosphere
Build Your kingdom here
We pray

Unleash Your kingdom's power
Reaching the near and far
No force of hell can stop
Your beauty changing hearts
You made us for much more than this
Awake the kingdom seed in us
Fill us with the strength and love of Christ
We are Your church
We are the hope 
On Earth