Tuesday, September 29, 2009

6 Meals in a snap!

***This blog post will not have any pictures.....I have a stupid virus I can't get rid of and it won't let me attach pictures....booo! But I promise, everything was delicious!****

So I haven't posted in quite some time. I have to be frank in saying that we have been having some probems at home. Everytime I "think" I understand why they call it the terrible twos, it gets worse. We love our little guy to death, but I swear he just is like the energizer bunny and keeps going and going and going. I do not look forward to eating any meas with him anymore and I feel horrible for saying that. Every night is a struggle. It's an absolute war (or should I say carnival, since we have to make up about 4 different games to get him to eat 10 bites) to get him to eat anything and I'm not sure it does any good because during that time he's probably burned twice as many calories. He's up on the table, he's hanging from the chair, he's crawling under the chair, he's everywhere. The upside to all this.....well I guess I'm still losing weight because I have no time to eat! J/K! I'm still glad we eat dinner every night as a family, but still, when does it start getting better. When do we not have to stop mid-bite every two seconds to tell him to sit down, stop spitting out your food, stop feeding the dog, stop this and that. I feel like the worst mom in the world.

Weekends, yeah, well, they aren't much better either. I get just about nothing done except the family room and basement picked up every 10 minutes and by the time I'm done I start all over.

On a lighter note, I'm trying to streamline things as much as possible. I keep telling myself Luke's behavior problems are because Todd and I work and so he does these things for attention. I know I'm probably beating myself up more than I should, but regardless, I continue on. Anyway, so I came up with this awesome little three night supper/lunch plan. As long as you don't mind having chicken for lunch and dinner three days in a row, hopefully you'll love this as much as we have! (You could also probably freeze the chicken and use at a later date to space out these meals if you think 3 days of chicken is a little overkill).

Anyway, I started out on Sunday morning marinating the chicken breast. I used my new favorite meat marinade I posted about a few weeks ago. In case you forget, here it is again:

1 1/2 cups vegtable oil
3/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 Worcestershire sauce
1/2 red wine vinegar
1/3 lemon juice
2 Tbsp dry mustard
1 tsp kosher salt
1 Tbsp fresh ground pepper
1 1/2 tsp fresh minced parsley

Just shake everything up in a jar and use as you need. For this recipe, I only used about half of the marinade for all the chicken.

Then Sunday night Todd grilled the chicken breasts and I served with some simple baked potatoes with butter, fresh chives from our herb garden, kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. We had brownie sundeas with it for dessert. The remaining 5 chicken breast were packaged up and put in the refridgerator.

The next day for lunch I made chicken cesar wraps for both of us for lunch. I got some tomatoe basil tortilla/sandwich wraps on the manager's special rack for only $.99! I used those, tore apart 1/2 a chicken breast for each wrap, tore up a few leaves of Romaine lettuce, sprinkled with a little parmesean cheese, and put a little Ceasar dressing down the middle. Todd and I both thought it was delicious.

Monday night for dinner was Chicken Pasta Primavera. I actually got this recipe from http://www.5dollardinners.com/2009/09/pasta-primavera-2.html so go on over and check that recipe out.

Then for lunch on Tuesday I split another chicken breast and tore it up into a tortilla wrap. This time I made chicken cobb salad wraps though. A little bit of mayo, colby cheese, lettuce, chicken, tomatoe, and avacado. Todd added some ranch to his. Again, they were delicious, quick, cheap and easy.

Tonight for dinner was chicken pesto pasta. I just made this up with what we had on hand. I again tore a leftover chicken breast into pieces and tossed it in a skillet with some olive oil and garlic. I sauteed that until it got warm and then turned the burner to low. I added 1 and 1/4 cup heavy cream, 1/2 cup parmesean cheese, 1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes in oil, and 1/2 prepared pesto. Meanwhile I cooked a 16 oz box of pasta to al dente. At this point I drainedit and tossed it in with te chicken and sauce. I served with a simple side of garlic bread.

Tomorrow for lunch we will be splitting up our last leftover chicken breast. We both loved the Ceasar wraps so much we're going yo do those again. We tossed around the idea of making it into BBQ chicken wraps, but maybe another time perhaps.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Brooke's 3 months - super belated!

Yeah, so I know Brooke's now been 3 months for almost half a month, but hey, better now than never right? So here's a few pictures of her from the past month:
Brooke's 3 month "birthday" shoot by me! Can you tell she thinks I'm halarious?!?!

Brooke went to her first festival inTodd's home town. Yeah....she had about as much fun as I did. ;P

Who crawled into who's bed? And are my kids color blind? Don't they know blue is for boys and pnk is for girls.....guess not!
We've been having a TON of thunderstorms this summer. Chloe is still a HUGE baby during storms, she just has a new pal to protect her. She may be about 1/4 of her size, but hey, it works I guess.

And Brooke modeling her newest additions to her fall wordrobe (and newest additions to mommies OBSESSION). These are both recycled wool longies from seller Chickadee on Etsy.com. Cute strawberry on the bum of this one...

And recycled wool footies with a matching hot pink flower on the bum of these. Too cute! She loved them too if you couldn't tell. ;P

So this month Brooke has really started to "wake up" and see the world around her instead of sleeping for 20 hours a day. I wasn't complainging, but hey, it's fun to actually have fun with them during that baby baby stage though. She's holding up her head pretty well now and loves to do her tumy time. She is eating like a bottoless pit and laughing pretty much every inute of the day. I guess when you have a brother as silly as hers, one can't help but laugh all day long. She's also sleeping very well. She goes down right after Luke about 7:30, sleeps until Todd goes to work at 3am, and then sleeps again until about 9am. We switched to her crib without any fuss as well. I can only hope this great babiness doesn't turn into toddler hell X 2. I don't know if we can take it if she's any more "active" than Luke. "Active" is a nice way to put it, right? =)

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Bread and butter pickles!

Todd is OBSESSED with condiments. That guy can go through a bottle of ketchup a meal! I swear! But bread and butter pickles are his one obsession that drives me nuts. Ketchup, okay fine, I just grab the bottle of Heinz in the grocery store and we're on our way. Mustard, better make it Plochmans. But pickles....on no, not just any store brand will do. Instead he HAS to have the $7 gourmet, small business canned pickles. Okay, fine, I'm all for supporting business, BUT, not when my husband goes through pickles like it's his job. $7 for pickles once a week is not economical. And guess where his new favorite pickles are from.....yeah Gatlinburg, TN....some 400+ miles from where we live! He'll seek out people going down there just so they can bring him back pickles! It's nuts!
SO, I set out to find him some I could make myself. I tried about 20 recipes before I came across this one. I tweaked it a bit based on the taste of the ones he gets, but who would have thought cooking them in the microwave was the key!
So first, chop up three large cucumbers.

Next chop up three large onions into thin slices about 1" in length. If you don't like these as well, you could probably cut it down to one, but he likes the onions on his sandwiches too!

Toss the cucumbers and onions in a bowl with 3 cups of sugar, 3 tsp salt, 1 tsp mustard seeds, 1 and a 1/2 cups distilled white vinegar, 1/2 tsp celery seed, and 1/2 tsp ground turmeric. I added just a dash of red chili peppers too, just for a little surprise kick!
Then give it a good stir and pop it in the microwave and cook until cucmbers are tender, sitrring every 2-3 minutes. For me this was about 15 minutes.

This is what the finished product will look ike. They will take a while to cool down, but they are delicious from the start, but the taste will get better with each day as well. I'm sure these would be great for canning I just personally haven't tried. We are keeping in the fridge until they are gone.....maybe a week or two.

Deck sneak peak!

Yeah, Todd promised me a deck in March. Then he promised me a deck by my birthday, in June. THEN, he PROMISED it would be done by 4th of July. Yeah.....it's now Labor Day....BUT, he's almost done! Anyway, here is a few sneak peaks.....it already looks 100% better than these pictures, but I haven't had time to snap any pictures.....so for what they are worth.....the sneak peak:And even though it is far from a finished masterpiece, we've already began to enjoy it. Only one section of railing is up, but we moved our old table and chairs and grill up on the deck. We hung out there this morning after harvesting our neighbors garden and then we ate dinner out there tonight. I LOVE it out there. Now if only I could just go buy new patio furniture, a new grill, ourdoor rug, and a new patio set, I'd be in heaven. But that is the bad thing about this getting done so late in the year......yeah EVERYONE is sold out. Boooo! So we'll just have to make do until this spring. Plan is do a 6 person teak table, blackish outdoor rug under it, new black grill of some kind (thought Weber but now hearing not great reviews) and then a bar with bar stools up by the window. Oh and we ran cable out to it to, so we'll be setting up a tv mount as well. Obviously we won't be able to keep the tv out there ALL the time, but we can bring it out for parties and what not.....how cool huh? Totally Todd's idea! Men! Anyway....more to come! Stay tuned!

Friday, September 4, 2009

How does it fit?

I always wondered how different diapers fit babies at all the different stages. So, whie this is a little late, late is better than never right? Al these pictures were taken just as Brooke turned 2 months. We weighed 10 lbs 5 oz.

First is a Suzie's One Size fitted diaper. I wasn't a big fan of these when we first got them. They do fold down to supposedly fit a newborn baby, but they would be super bulky. Also, the outside of them is regular cotton fabric, not the stretchy soft knit like most fitteds. Kind of threw me off at first. Oh yeah, and they take FOREVER to dry b/c they are so thick! BUT, I've come to love these diapers. They work GREAT for nighttime!

Next is a Medium Blueberry Al In One. While this diaper is super cute I just haven't ever been a fan of it. We've had some major leak issues and I think it's due t repelling. I've tried everything though and nothing seems to work.

Next up is a one size Goodmama fitted diaper. I really like these diapers. They fit her a little big at this point, but the have cut prints, super soft and stretches a nice amount. We use these overnight as well.

Fishnoodles cover in size small. I really love the print on this diaper and also the fit. It gets nice and snug around the legs yet isn't so tight it leaves a mark. Has held up very well too!

This fitted is by Spoiled Rotten. They are no longer in business for whatever reason, but it makes me sad because we loved this diaper so much. Love the print and the fit was very good for her thin legs and tall rise.

Next is a size small BumGenious. This was a perfect diaper for that "transition period" from newborn diapers to one size diapers. They work great and are easy to use. This is our main "mimi" diaper used during the day when she watches Brooke.

Next is a size small BumGenious 3.0 AIO. These are our "mimi" diapers because they are the only ones my mom will use when she watches the kids during the day. They work great, are easy to put on, and there is just no hassle with them. Needless to say.....at about 13 lbs now, she's outgrowing them. =(

This is the one size Swaddlebees pocket diaper with aplix closure. For the most part I really like these. They fit good and absorb well, but I'm not a fan of the fact that the soaker just "lays" in the diaper, not snap in. Other than that though, it was a very nice diaper for the price and cute print too. :P

Again, one size Swaddlebees pocket diaper, this time with the snap closure though. Its fit her pretty well so far, but usually I'm not a snaps fan. It seems my kids are always in between sizes and I can never get a perfect fit with snaps.

Next up is a size small Thirsties AIO. These arecute, trim, and easy to use. This is another of mimi's favorites. They last forever too! We've been using them since about 10 lbs and I'd say we have at least another month in this size.

And a pair of SBish (Sustainable Babyish) interlock wool pants. EVERYONE talks about how wonderful these are but I personally don't see what all the hype is about. They were soft for wool but they were not stretchy AT ALL. DD is very skinny and yet these pants were to tight in the waist and too long in the legs. I wonde what baby WOULD fit in these properly? The upside? I was able to sell these in a heart beat for exactly what I paid for them.

Lastly is a MonkeySnuggles pocket diaper from Etsy. I thought the print was cute so I thought I'd try it out. It's a very cute diaper and a cute print, but the insert it came with is just not enough. I added a secnd doubler with it, tried with BG doublers as well as some hemp inserts from ArtsyFarstyFooFoo and the diaper worked perfect!

I had quite a bit more in my "stash" at this time, but hey, never enough hours in the day right? Maybe I'll have a "new" fashion show and stash pics any day now.....we'll see. ;)