Welcome to My Blog!

I created this blog to share some of my crafts (when I have time to do them), some of my Mommy musings, recipes, and my day to day life.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

I'm Here! I'm Here!

Wow! I haven't had the opportunity to update my blog in several days. I have been trying to get some things that I have been putting off around the house completed, and time simply gets away from me. I am using this blog as a way to document and record my thoughts until I can get them into an album so here are my past several days.

Wednesday 1/27 - my sweet husband brings me flowers from time to time. This is a picture of the yellow roses he surprised me with Tuesday.

Thursday 1/28 - In an effort to try to start eating a little bit healthier, I threw this fruit salad together to go with dinner last night. I love to cut up fresh banana in it.

Friday 1/29 - My sister, Stephanie came over so that we could work on the invitations for Owen and my nieces b-day party. WOW! I actually do craft!

Saturday 1/30 - We woke up to about 3 inches of snow on Saturday morning, so I snapped this picture of the tree in our side yard.

Sunday 1/31- I took this picture of the boys today in their (almost) matching pajamas. I think it is soooo sweet! =)

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

He's on the Move!

Today's picture was of Kaden "cruising" down the couch. He just pulled up for the first time last week, and now he is really moving. I was cracking up trying to take this picture because he was moving towards me and laughing.

Monday's picture was of batteries. Man do we seem to go through a lot of those things around here. Owen has a lot of traditonal toys..... trucks, cars, Play-Doh, Lincoln Logs, etc.... but there is no denying the allure of those flashing, noisy toys.

Taco Soup

This is the soup that I made in the Crock-Pot yesterday. I can't claim this recipe because I found it on-line

Taco Soup

1 lb lean ground beef or turkey, cooked and drained (optional)
2 cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2 cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 large can diced tomatoes
1 14.5 ounce can of diced tomatoes with chiles
2 cans of corn
1 package taco seasoning mix
1 package ranch dressing.

Place meat in the Crock-Pot and sprinkle dressing and taco seasoning over it. Add the other ingredients and cook on low all day.

My tips: I used 96% lean ground beef and rinsed it with water after draining it to further decrease the fat. I figured since it was cooking for so long in the spices that the flavor wouldn't be too compromised. I also added shredded cheese, a dollop of sour cream and a few crushed up tortilla chips to each bowl before serving. I think that all soups taste better the second day, but I think it was especially true for this one.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

My Baby is Growing Up Too Fast!

Each month on the calendar day that Kaden was born, I place him on the couch with the same stuffed bear and take his picture. Thursday was his 9 month birthday and also happens to be the first time that he "pulled-up" to something. My little boy is growing up too fast!!!!!

Friday's picture is of my niece, Brooke. I just love taking pictures of her with those big expressive brown eyes. When I took this she was pouting on the floor because she was in time-out.

Saturday I didn't know what to take a picture of, so I decided to make my iPhone the subject. I got it for Christmas, and I LOVE it!

Today we went over to my sister's house to watch the Colts game. I took this picture of the kids playing with the game on in the background. I am soooo excited that the Colts will be going to the Superbowl in 2 weeks!!!!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Cheese Tortellini Soup

I meant to post this recipe earlier this week, but with Kaden getting sick I just never got around to it. I made this on Sunday, and it was so very good. I found the original recipe on allrecipes.com, but then I modified it to our taste.

Cheese Tortellini Soup

48 oz. chicken broth
14.5 oz can Italian style stewed tomatoes
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 of a small onion
16 ounces of cheese tortellini, thawed
10 ounces frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well-drained
2T. fresh grated Parmesan cheese.

Saute the onion and garlic in a little bit of olive oil until tender. Add broth and tomatoes and bring to a boil. Add the spinach, and tortellini, and Parmesan cheese and turn heat down to a simmer. Let simmer for 20 minutes. I grated additional Parmesan cheese over each bowl before serving.

This was a really tasty soup. Even my 2 year old kept saying, "Mmmm, Yummy!" while he was eating it. =)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

One Sick Little Baby

Sunday morning Kaden woke up with a fever and very congested. I took him to the doctor and he had RSV, a double ear infection, and an eye infection. The poor little guy was completely miserable Sunday and all day Monday. I took this picture of him napping on Daddy.

I wasn't sure what to use for the POTD for Tuesday. I saw this magazine laying on the table and decided to go with it. I love to read magazines because I can pick them up and read for a few minutes (about what I have time for these days) and then put it right back down.

Wednesday's picture is of my mom's homemade chocolate chip cookies. I admit that I am "break and bake" sort of girl when it comes to cookies. While I love to cook, I do not like to bake. That is what makes these cookies such a treat. I thought they positively begged for a cup of coffee to be enjoyed along side them..... in my favorite cup, of course. =)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Playing Catch-Up

Wow! We have been busy the past few days. My poor blog has been neglected. I took Kaden to the immediate care center this morning because he wasn't feeling well yesterday and then woke-up with a fever this morning. The doctor said he has a mild case of RSV (two kids in his daycare have it.) You can't really do much except treat the fever and try to keep him comfortable. Here are my pictures from the past four days.

Thursday, January 14th: Owen grabbed the sheet off of his bed and layed down on the couch. It didn't matter that our labrador, Lucy, was already there. She is such a good dog.

Friday, January 15th: Owen is completely obsessed with cars. This is a picture of him over at my mom's house after he had lined up all his cars. I have a feeling this won't be the only POTD with Owen and his cars.

Saturday, January 16th: Today was Owen's first swim lesson at the YMCA. He did a good job.

Sunday, January 17th: Today's picture is one I wish I didn't have to take. Owen comes out the kitchen saying, "Uh-OH, Uh-OH. Bubbles are coming out of there." I had no idea what he was talking about until I walked in the kitchen and saw bubbles overflowing from our dishwasher. Hopefully it was isolated incident because I know that I happen to overfill the Jet-Dry container. Owen got a lot of enjoyment in watching the bubbles spill, anyway. =)

Be sure to check back tomorrow when I post the recipe for the cheese tortellini soup that I fixed for dinner tonight.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

I LOVE a Great Bargain

Yesterday I had to drive to Indianapolis for a teacher conference. We stopped at some outlet malls on the way back. I popped into the Coach store, and they were having an awesome sale. I hadn't bought myself a new Coach purse in a couple of years, so I was due. =) Anyway, I got this cute black purse that was originally priced at $348 for $106! I just happened to have $85 of my Christmas money in my purse, so Merry Christmas to me! I rarely buy anything for myself these days, so this was fun! I find it funny that there is thread on the Cricut message board right now that asks if you would buy a new cart or Coach purse given the choice I guess that answers that question!.... Although I did get 3 new carts for Christmas.

My POTD for today is of the cute snowman pillow that I keep on my couch. When I take the Christmas stuff down, I put the snowman stuff up and keep it up until the end of February. This little guy just makes me smile when I look at him.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Recipe Monday

So I mentioned last week how much I love to use my Crock-Pot on Monday. It is nice to come home on the first day back to work and have dinner waiting. Today I made TDF (to die for) Roast. It is so simple and absolutely wonderful. I have given the recipe to many people,and everybody has raved about it. I myself got the recipe from a wonderful lady that I "met" on babycenter.com. in June 2006. We were both pregnant with our boys at the same time and were posting on our birth board. There is a group of about 15 of us that have moved to a private board. We have become quite close even though most of us have never met in person. I love how the internet can bring people together!!!!

TDF Roast
1 package ranch dressing
1 package Italian dressing
1 package brown gravy
Roast (I usually use chuck) however big you need for your family
vegetables (I use a small bag of baby carrots and whole mini portabella mushrooms)
1/2 cup water.

I rub the dressing and gravy into the meat and then place everything in a Crock-Pot on low. Cook all day.

Tonight I fixed mashed potatoes to serve with the roast. I even peeled and cut the potatoes and put them in cold water in the fridge last night, so I wouldn't have to do it this evening. Sometimes I put sliced potatoes in with the roast and let them cook all day.

Oh, and I have a new respect for people that "stage" food to be photographed. This doesn't look very good, but I promise it is. Try it, and let me know what you think.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

We Have a Crawler!!!!

Kaden has been scooting around on his tush for a few weeks now, but he officially started crawling today..... It is still the army crawl, but he gets to where he wants to go. Owen is going to be ticked because we have to start closing the gate at the top of the steps. That means he won't be able to walk down to the basement anytime he wants to anymore.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Science Center Fun

We made good on our promise to get out of the house today and took Owen to the Louisville Science Center. We are members, so it is nice to be able to go over, spend an hour or so, and leave without feeling like we didn't get our "money's worth." I like the fact that they have a large room with activities that are only for children six and under. Owen had the most fun at the water activity table. He did really enjoy trying to get enclosed in a bubble with Daddy, though.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Second Day at Home

So I am bit reluctant to post today's POTD. I am normally a pretty organized, neat person. I don't like clutter and mess. You sure wouldn't be able to tell it by this picture. Today was our second snow day and the second day that I was home all day with the boys by myself. The roads were much better today, but the windchill hovered around zero all day, so we stayed put. Owen actually got out some of the toys he hasn't played with in a long time. He found them by completely dumping his toy baskets all over my living room floor. When my husband walked in with pizza he said, "Holy Cow! I don't know whether to eat first or clean up this mess!" ---- He is actually cleaning up while I sit on the couch and type this (We did eat first =))
Tomorrow we plan to take Owen to the science center so that he can run around and play for a while. He and I are both ready to get out of the house for a few hours.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Snow Day

So we got our first snow day of 2010. It snowed about 3 inches here today. That was enough to call off school. I just got the call that school is cancelled again tomorrow. I am glad that I got my planning done for next week on Wednesday so that I don't have to run into school over the weekend. I took this picture from my back door. I didn't have on shoes and was too lazy to go put them on. =)

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Be Sure to Stop and Smell the Flowers

My POTD today is of Owen smelling the white carnation that I received at my Tri-Kappa initiation last night. I got these two really good pictures, so I will have to choose which one will make it into the album.

Well they are forecasting 4-6 inches of snow for tonight. That will close school for tomorrow for sure and quite possibly Friday too. I guess I will get a few extra days with my boys this week. =)

Monday, January 4, 2010

Baby it is COLD Outside!

So the weathermen are saying that we are in the midst of the longest stretch of below freezing weather for the past decade. What is better on a cold winter day than hot soup??? Not much as far as I am concerned, so that is what we had for dinner tonight and also my P365 photo today. I made vegetable soup in the crockpot. Now there are as many vegetable soup recipes as there are people that eat it. This just happens to be how I cooked my soup tonight.

1 1/2 - 2 pounds of lean stew meat cut into smaller bite sized pieces
1 large bottle of vegetable juice
16 oz. bag of frozen mixed vegetables
1 14 1/2 can of diced tomatoes
egg noodles

I brown the stew meat the night before and put it in a bowl in fridge. Be sure to retain the juices that cook out of the meat. The next morning I place everything except the noodles in the crockpot and turn it on low. Cook all day. About a half-hour before you plan to eat throw several handfuls of egg noodles in the crockpot and cook until tender. Salt and pepper to taste.

This produces a very thick and rich soup. I served the vegetable soup with beer bread. My sister hosted a "Tastefully Simple" party in December and I purchased the mix from her. It is soooo yummy! All you have to do is add one 12 ounce bottle of beer (or any clear carbonated liquid) and bake for 1 hour.

I really love cooking with my crockpot.... especially on Monday. It is great to come home on the first day back to work and have dinner already prepared. I noticed that chuck roast is on sale this week, so be sure to check back next Monday for my TDF (to die for) roast recipe.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

The Best of Intentions

Today, I had PLANNED to work on the mini-album that I am going to give my Mom. I wanted to make some cuts from my Life's a Beach cart. Well Owen and Kaden had different plans for me today. Kaden was fussy and simply did not want to be put down. It makes it hard to scrap when you are holding an 8 month old all day. Mom may get her album (which was supposed to be a Christmas gift) sometime around Easter at the rate we are going.

So my project 365 picture was going to be a picture of my yummy guacomole, but then Owen's antics at the table pretty well summed up our day today, so I think it will be the keeper. He had just said, "Mommy, I tired," and laid his head down on the table. Too cute!

Here is the picture of the guacomole. I would love to share this VERY easy recipe with you!

1 ripe avocado
a few spoonfuls of your favorite salsa or picante
a generous squeeze of fresh lime
a few pinches of kosher salt.

Mash the avocado with a fork and carefully fold in the other ingredients. The lime is important. I didn't have a fresh lime one day when I made this, and the results weren't nearly as tasty.

I love this little recipe because it is soooo simple to make. Even my husband who usually doesn't like guacomole because "it looks gross" enjoys this.

You probably won't have leftovers, but here is an AWESOME tip it you do. Leave the avocado pit in the guacomole if you will be putting it in the fridge. It helps to keep if from turning brown.

Friday, January 1, 2010

My Second Attempt at Blogging

So this will be my second attempt at blogging. The first one.... well it didn't go so well. So I scrapped the entire thing, and I am starting over fresh. I am going to attempt to do Project 365 again this year. For those of you that don't know what this is..... you simply take a picture every single day for 365 days. The purpose is to record the every day happenings in life.... not just the "big stuff." I love the idea because life is really made up of all of the little things. I purchased a kit last year to organize my project 365 photos. I did really well at taking pictures every day for about 2 months or so, and then when I went to print them, there was a mix-up with the order, and it would have literally taken me hours to sit down and figure out which pictures I had, which were missing, and then go back to the computer, reorder,etc...... It just felt too overwhelming. This year one of my New Year's Resolutions is to actually print my photos at least once a month. I am fairly good at taking pictures, I just never print them. So wish me luck. Project 365 begins TODAY!