Right in the Middle

Ursula and I went to a fabulous Mother-Daughter Conference this weekend. More info/registering for summer conference here: http://michelleinthemiddle.com/mother-daughter-conference/

Mostly, I just wanted to share our adorable pic:


As you can see, I still totally have an inch on her. This week, anyway.


Waffles, Wolves & Wort

Fun day trip to Asheville this weekend (U had something the night before, so we couldn’t stay up there).

We started with brunch at Corner Kitchen. The OpenTable app rocks my world – it was VERY nice to bypass a giant line because I’d grabbed a reservation. Dan and U had waffles (I had eggs – delicious but boring.)


Then we headed to our main destination – the Western North Carolina Nature Center.

Ursula, wolves, bog turtle.

U and I had visited back in July. At the time, she donated money to adopt a wolf. This weekend was an event called “Wild Parents Day”. There was an hour presentation that only Dan attended (she could only bring one guest). From what I heard, a toad peed on someone, people ate gingersnaps and they made food for animals.

The second hour was much more exciting. We got to walk around the exhibits and deliver “enrichment” to the adopted animals. Everyone got a bag or box to open, filled with snacks. The wolves had wool, chicken, Cheerios and (I think) nuts. They were nervous at first but got into it.

Feeding wolves!


When I was checking out brunch places, I realized that one of Dan’s favorite breweries (Highland) is practically next door, so we stopped by for some (root) beer…

Frosty root beer

…and a tour. With beer goggles.

Beer goggles!


We spent spring break doing all sorts of exciting things.

Like getting braces.

This just happened.

And getting teeth pulled 3 days later…

Braces, day 4. Two teeth extracted today.

Right now, she only has the 6 brackets you can see. She still needs 4.5 teeth to come in (one is partially in, hence the .5) – 2 of those were the teeth that we had pulled last week. So, tooth-wise she wouldn’t be quite ready, but she’s growing (quickly) so “we” are working on her bite.

Four weeks after these brackets, she’s getting bottom brackets and a Herbst appliance, which is best described as internal headgear. The will be on for close to a year (11 months is the projection), then she’ll get more brackets on her back teeth. She could have waited and done nothing til the Herbst comes in, but decided she wanted to get a few brackets to get used braces before having a mouthful.

So far, she is a very diligent dental patient who is brushing, swishing and water-pic-ing like mad.

Easter 2015

Perhaps sensing it is the last Easter before middle school, the bunny had to pull out the big basket this year. Or, as I call it “whoops – this sort of turned into Christmas” (some of the poorly pictured items include Kendra Scott earrings, yoga pants from Athleta and pencils from Japan. The EB needs to stop buying online and forgetting about it, apparently.)

EB had to get out the big basket this year.

Dan had setup at church and I was teaching Sunday school, so the morning was a rush and there were no pictures til we got to my parents’

Cousin madness!



Finally warm enough to remove the blazer. This is the first dress that she’s gotten from the Jr Department – it is very exciting. (Also pictured, aforementioned Kendra Scott earrings)

Happy Easter!

Brownie waffles. For breakfast.

Brownie waffles. For breakfast.

These appeared (and smelled) delicious. Must make GF next time. There is only 1/3c flour in the whole recipe!

Double Chocolate Brownie Waffles

(from KitchenAid blog)


1/3 cup flour
1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t kosher or fine sea salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2 eggs
1/2 t vanilla extract
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips or chunks (or mini M&Ms if it’s all you can find in your house)


Preheat waffle iron. In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt and set aside.

In a heat-proof bowl, microwave the butter for 45 to 60 seconds or until melted. Add sugar, brown sugar, and sifted cocoa powder and stir until it forms a thick, gritty paste. Whisk in eggs and vanilla extract until smooth. Fold in flour mixture until almost incorporated, then fold in chocolate chips. Do not overmix.

Scoop into waffle maker and cook for 2 minutes 30 seconds. When timer goes off, unplug or turn the machine off completely. Let the waffles cool in the machine for 4 to 6 minutes, on the longer end if you prefer extra crunchy waffles. Then remove and enjoy!

Our waffle iron makes 2 squares – this recipe filled it 2 times (4 waffles), which was perfect for Dan and U.