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Monday, February 26, 2007

Win a cute bracelet!

5 Minutes for Mom is hosting a contest where you can win a cute little girl's Easter bracelet from Our 2 Peas in a Pod. Check it out, it's really darling!

Menu Plan Monday

Brrr...it's cold here! We need soup this week!

Monday- Chicken and Broccoli Pasta
Tuesday- Fiesta Stuffed Peppers
Wednesday- Cheeseburgers
Thursday- Chicken and Rice Soup
Friday- Teriyaki Roast, Teriyaki Brown Rice

Head over to Laura's to see more menu plans and make your own!

Saturday, February 24, 2007

What is a k-cup you ask?

Only part of the best coffee maker EVER.

And I get no kickbacks for writing this.

Only the joy you will receive when you realize that you never have to wash a coffee pot again.

For our anniversary present this year we bought ourselves a new Keurig single serve brewing system. It uses k-cups that look like this:



Each one is for a single cup of coffee, and you can choose the size of cup you want to brew! Since you use a new k-cup for each mug o' caffeinated heaven, your coffee is always fresh (unless you like a milder brew and want to re-use the cup).

Oh, and ready in less than a minute.

And best of all- the only clean up? Remove the k-cup and throw it away.

See. I told you.

The. Best. Coffee. Maker. Ever.

Friday, February 23, 2007

The doctor says

It's up to me if I want to take some benadryl. She said that it can dry up my milk and sedate the baby, but that I need to weigh the risks against my discomfort.

Ack! When put like that I feel like a horrible mom for taking it!

I'm allergic to exercise!

Really! I woke up yesterday covered in itchy hives, and the only new thing in my life is a new gym I just joined.

They have this spray out for people to wipe down the machines when they're done, and I'm thinking maybe I'm allergic to it!

I couldn't get an appointment at the doctor to get a prescription for allegra, and I don't want to take benadryl while nursing without a doctor's ok. It is not the safest.

Even the bottoms of my feet are slightly swollen and feel weird to walk on. And my eyelids are red and swollen. And my ears.

A picture of grace and beauty in blue pajamas is what I am.

I'm miserable. I'm going to go take a nap!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

In the mail today

I got two boxes from my mom.

One had five boxes of brownie mix.

The other had three boxes of cake mix and three tubs of icing.

There was a sale at her grocery store, you see.

And doesn't that just make perfect sense?

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Women who love too much

When I was younger I was always embarassed or annoyed by my mom's "help." You know, stupid, end of the world teenage stuff.

For example one year we had this mock Roman thing and we were supposed to wear togas. Everyone just brought a towel or sheet and tied it around their shoulder.

My mom went out and bought me a gold toga.

I have no idea why now, but at 14, it was humiliating.

Now this tendency is one of the things that I just love about my mom.

The airline lost her luggage and she had to describe to them one thing in each suitcase that would stand out. She told them they could take their pick:

-Two superhero capes (one pink and one blue)
-Three cans of pancake mix (strawberry, blueberry, and chocolate chocolate chip)
-Three bags of diapers (in various sizes)
-About 200 coffee k-cups (in various flavors)

How could you not love her?

Monday, February 19, 2007

My Mom

My mom just left after visiting us for several days (which explains my absence from blogdom).
She just left a few hours ago, and ya'll, I miss her already!

Now, to some of you, this is probably normal. But not to me.

I love my parents, but I was always pretty independent and I never missed them when we were apart. I actually left home and went to college when I was 16, and even then I didn't miss my parents.

But the older I get, the more I miss my mom. Every time I see her, she seems just a little bit older. There's more gray in her hair, and she doesn't move as easily as she used to. She has developed arthritis and fibromyalgia in recent years, and I guess it has made me realize that she won't always be here to buy way too many presents and cook too much food.

I think one big downside of the military life is that we don't get to live near my parents, and my children only see their much beloved grandparents every few months. But my mom is the first to encourage us to stay in the military, and has never once complained or been manipulative about the little time we do get to see her (unlike other relatives).

So I miss her already, and my heart aches when I watch her with my kids, knowing that some day she'll be gone, and I'm surprised by how much that thought hurts.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

An even better reason to buy a house

We found one with two bathtubs.

The one in the master bathroom is a whirlpool tub.

It has been over 4 years since I have had a tub to myself and not had to share it with children, Dora, rubber duckys, toy boats and various squirting toys.

Heaven, I tell you.

It would be heaven to have a bathtub to myself.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Menu Plan Monday

Ok, late in the day on Monday, but hey, I'm still planning!

Today- Leftovers!
Tuesday- Beef n Broccoli, Rice (I have the meat already cut and marinaded in the freezer from last week!)
Wednesday- BBQ Pork Sandwiches
Thursday- Chicken Pot Pie
Friday- Pork Chops with Apples (still need to find a recipe for this, though!)

I was flipping through channels while nursing this week, and discovered Quick Fix Meals on food Network. Have you seen this? She makes one meal, and then uses some of the ingredients in other meals throughout the week. I am definitely going to try some of her recipes after my next big grocery trip!

Oh, and don't forget to head over to Laura's to see more menu plans!

The best reasons to buy a house

Chloe: Mommy, What are you doing?

Me: I'm trying to figure out if we can buy a house.

Chloe: Why?

Me: Because then we'll own it instead of someone else owning it, and we can do what we want with it.

Chloe: (skipping off happily) Daddy! Daddy! We're going to buy a house and we can paint my room and make giant holes in the walls!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Ahhhh....

Today all three kids took a nap at the same time.

I have homeschool lessons to plan, I need to learn about buying a house and research whether we can afford to, I have two baskets of laundry sitting in the hallway waiting to be put away, and I need to cook some meat that's been sitting in the fridge for a couple days.

Instead, I took a nap.

It was 2 hours long.

And it was good.

Friday, February 9, 2007

Sweet Little Lies

Ok, I will admit that it was really cute when I found a pile of toys hiding under a blanket in Chloe's baby doll crib.

(And this was after I had found them in her dirty laundry basket, before which they were in the living room.)

When I asked her why she put them there, she said, "I was being sneaky!" Which would have been terribly sweet if not for All The LIES that she has been telling lately.

The other day, Chloe got in trouble for stuffing everything that was on her floor into her closet and then proceeding to lie about it several times. It was her first outright LIE.

But apparently not her last.

Four out of five days this week she has been relegated to her room to clean it up properly. You'd think she'd have learned by now that it doesn't work, but there was that cute little pile, all snuggled up with Bitty Baby.

And short of throwing away everything that she sneaks into the wrong spot, I'm just not sure what to do anymore.

And on top of it, I'm just plain sad that she's beginning to lose the innocence of childhood.

Really, I think that's what I'm most unsure what to do about.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Wordless Wednesdays- Sleepy Kids

sleepy kids

A yummy cheap date


I agree with Shalee that my favorite restaurants are the Japanese ones where they cook right in front of you (which, incidentally, we only went to one of when we were in Japan, and they don't do all the fun showy stuff!) but they are too expensive for our current budget!

My favorite cheap date since college has been dessert and coffee. It's not free, but we like to go to a nice restaurant and share one dessert and get some coffee.

You'll get free refills (On the coffee, not the dessert. Can you imagine dessert refills? "Waitress, please refill the lava in the my molten chocolate lava cake...") and if you go late enough it won't be too crowded and you won't feel pressured to leave. You get all the feeling and atmosphere of an expensive restaurant for a fraction of the price!

Check out other ideas or share your own at Shalee's!

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Ultimate Blog Party


Don't forget about the Ultimate Blog Party hosted by 5 Minutes for Mom! Read some great blogs you may not have seen before, and get yours out there! Anyone who has signed their Mr Linky and invited friends to the party gets entered in a drawing for cool prizes. One of which is a handmade mini scrapbook made by me :)

Return of The Grumpiest Boy in the World

He's back.

And he's not happy.

At first, we thought Luke had a cold coming on. He was grumpy and waking up at night.

When the cold never materialized and he got even grumpier, we thought maybe he was getting some molars.

We gave him some medicine.

It got to the point that he pretty much screamed everything he wanted to say, couldn't figure out what he wanted, screamed for an hour at naptime and bedtime, and was up multiple times at night.

Finally he let us actually check his teeth and we saw that he has all the teeth he's supposed to have at 2.

Then a few days ago we finally clued in to the problem.

He laid down on the boppy and said, "I a baby!" Later, when I walked into his room holding the baby, he actually demanded, "Put baby Afry down!"

I realized I have been so consumed with trying to accomplish something with my days- laundry, vacuuming, just trying to keep up with the day to day messes that little kids make- that I haven't really been playing with him.

So we read books. We played Ring Around the Rosie. We did the Hokey Pokey and turned ourselves about. And that night he went to bed peacefully for the first time in two weeks.

It was a good reminder that the kids aren't going to remember if there were crumbs on the floor, but they will remember if mommy got down on the floor and played with them.

That's what it's all about.

Make Snow Ice Cream!

For those of you like us who are expecting snow tonight, try this with your kids! I haven't tried it yet, but hopefully we'll get enough snow to try it tomorrow.

Monday, February 5, 2007

Chicken noodle soup for the soul?

I've had to make some changes around here.

You see, Audrey is a wonderful sweet baby...until about 4:00. Then she just wants to nurse until 9 or 10pm when she finally falls asleep.

And if she can't nurse, well, the whole block and half the neighborhood are gonna hear her screaming.

So by about 5:00, I'm really ready for my husband to get home.

But he usually doesn't make it home until at least 6:30.

This wouldn't be such a problem if I didn't have two other kids who needed to eat dinner and wanted to spend time with mom. Plus it's just that time of day.

The witching hour.

The time when you need to be getting your well-planned gourmet meal on the table frantically figuring out what to throw together, touching up your makeup and hair changing out of your pajamas so your husband doesn't think you laid around eating bon bons all day, and straightening the decorative pillows shoveling a path to the door.

And as any mom will tell you, toddlers and preschoolers are exceptionally well-behaved usually on the verge of total meltdown during the witching hour.

What this all added up to in our house was a VERY grumpy mommy by the time daddy came home. I would pray for peace and patience. And then I would lose my temper and start snapping and yelling at the kids.

And then one day I was convicted by Proverbs 21:9 Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife.

It couldn't have been fun for my husband to come home from work to a grumpy wife. I wasn't having any fun. The kids definitely weren't having any fun. And our budget was suffering from the number of times we ordered pizza and carside to go meals.

A friend shared Proverbs 17:1 with me Better a dry crust with peace and quiet than a house full of feasting, with strife.

And I realized that this is a season that will pass. In order to keep peace in my house and not be in total meltdown by the end of the day, I'm going to have to simplify the evenings. My big realization was this-

It's ok to have canned soup and cereal for dinner.

In fact, God would rather we eat Campbell's from a can than a gourmet meal if it means I'm yelling and seething on the inside.

So tonight, we're proudly having tomato soup.

And if things don't work out, we just might have Cheerios tomorrow.

Menu Plan Monday

Ok, still trying to keep things simple this week, so here goes!

Monday- Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup
Tuesday- Pork Chops and Orange Rice, Salad
Wednesday- Tuna Melts, Salad
Thursday- Crockpot Chicken Soft Tacos, Refried Beans
Friday- Beef and Broccoli, Rice

Head over to orgjunkie's to see more menu plans or make your own!

Sunday, February 4, 2007

I was whonked upside the head!

With love, of course.

My friend blest whonked me over at the One Weigh or Another website. I'm trying to lose 65 pounds with OWOA's support (now down to about 60 pounds), and I don't think the freshly made donut I ate yesterday is on my diet.

Did I mention it was a Rolo donut? Caramel glaze with mini chocolate chips...mmmm...

Ahem.

Anyway.

I have this pattern with weight loss that I've never been quite able to break. I can't just diet. I have to diet AND exercise regularly. If I'm not exercising regularly then I find it really hard to eat well.

I mean, I hate to sweat, and if I do get all sweaty then I'm not going make it in vain and eat poorly, you know?

But if I'm not working out, well then I probably won't lose much anyway, so why not eat that nice hot donut? Or the ice cream and bread pudding dessert that we got at Applebees on Friday night. Or the toffee almond bar I had at Starbucks with Chloe. (Since the gooey, fattening truth about the donut is out, I might as well divulge my whole weekend's snacking.)

But now that my little secret is out, I am going to work harder this week! I will eat well and not give in to snacking! And I will exercise more than once.

And if I get snacky, I'll have a cup of coffee. Or two.

A really great idea


Head on over to Shalee's on Tuesday, Feb 6 to share (or steal) some great cheap date ideas! My mom is coming into town the weekend after Valentine's so I'm hoping to find some really good ideas since I'll have a free babysitter! Yay!

Saturday, February 3, 2007

You just might fall out of your chair

We did not go to Target today!

Are you ready to hear where we did go?

BJ's! Which is the same as Costco.

Ok, so it wasn't a never ending thrill ride that my children will be talking about for weeks to come. But in my defense, we were getting low on diapers.

And we also took a trip to The Fractured Prune and got us some freshly made donuts. I mean, any store where the donuts are practically dripping grease and has this as its mascot has got to be fun, right?


Friday, February 2, 2007

Not Target Again!

It is a sad fact of my life today that if I am not at home (and I usually am) then I am at Target.

Why there is always something to buy at Target, and how I go into the store to get one thing and come out with, oh, 17 things, I don't know.

A trip to Target has even become our source of weekend entertainment.

How sad is that?

This weekend I want to do something new and exciting.

But I don't know what!

My friend Joy and her family go letterboxing, which sounds like so much fun, and I'd love to try it sometime. But not when it is 35 degrees outside. And muddy. If you need proof of how muddy it is, see the Wordless Wednesday post below.

I'd love to go to the zoo, but it's a two-hour drive, and again, it's 35 degrees outside.

Hmm...this is going to require some major creativity from my sleep-deprived brain!