Monday, December 31, 2012

January Meals

I did it. In November, I made a month of meals from one trip to the grocery store. In December we bought a few odds and ends to get us through till the holidays, but we still did not make a real trip to the grocery store. We mostly lived off of items in the pantry or were out of town. I'm liking this. A lot.

Here is the plan for January. 33 meals.
  • Tacos
  • 3 Cheese Chicken Pasta Bake
  • Chicken Alfredo with Peas & Carrots
  • Orange Chicken and Rice
  • Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken Burritos
  • Potato Soup
  • Chicken & Stuffing with Green Beans
  • Pizza Quesadillas
  • Baked Spaghetti & Salad
  • Marzetti
  • Mexican Sweet Potatoes
  • Chicken in Basil Cream Sauce with Pasta
  • Grandma Audrey's Vegetable Soup with Crackers
  • Balsamic Chicken with Roasted Potatoes
  • Salmon with Sweet Potatoes
  • Quesadillas & Roasted Corn
  • Brats & Fries
  • Chicken Ravioli
  • Honey Garlic Chicken & Rice
  • Beans & Cornbread
  • Sweet & Sour Sausage with Baked Potatoes
  • Pizza Crescents
  • Spicy Romano Pasta & Asparagus
  • Orange Balsamic Pork Chops & Rice
  • Goulash
  • Mexican Pizza
  • Gnocchi in Butternut Squash Sauce
  • Manicotti
  • Salmon & Cous Cous
  • Spaghetti with Homemade Sauce
  • Breakfast Casserole
  • Pancakes & Bacon
Again, most of my recipes are on Pinterest. I think I might take a picture every day next month to show what we are eating. I know, I know - more annoying meal pics to clog up your Instagram feed. Just to make it bearable, I will give my review of all the recipes. Deal?

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Merry Christmas

Stationery card
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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Monday, November 12, 2012


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Saturday, November 3, 2012

A Month of Meals

Thanks to a new way of budgeting (courtesy of a paycheck that only comes one time a month with my new job) and a $200 trip to Aldi - I have 27 meals in my fridge and pantry. Other than trips to Publix for milk and fruit over the next few weeks I don't plan to go to the grocery store again until December. Here's what I have in my arsenal:
  1. Lemon Feta Chicken & Rice
  2. Chili
  3. Salmon & Basmati Rice
  4. Salisbury Steak, Mashed Potatoes & Green Beans
  5. Meatball Subs
  6. Sweet & Sour Sausage & Fries
  7. Taco Soup
  8. Fettuccine Alfredo with Peas & Carrots
  9. Aussie Chicken & Sweet Potatoes
  10. Parmesan Linguine
  11. Brats & Fries
  12. Chicken Ravioli
  13. Pulled Pork & Mac 'n Cheese
  14. Chicken Tortilla Soup
  15. Pancakes & Bacon
  16. Honey Garlic Chicken & Rice
  17. Beans & Cornbread
  18. Potato Soup
  19. Sweet & Sour Meatballs & Baked Potatoes
  20. Egg Noodle Casserole
  21. Sloppy Joe Casserole
  22. Buffalo Chicken Cups, Green Beans & Fries
  23. Mexican Sweet Potatoes
  24. Spaghetti
  25. Chicken Taquitos & Roasted Corn
  26. Stuffed Chicken & Green Beans
  27. Mexican Rice Bake
  28. Baked Cream Cheese Spaghetti
Yes, we eat a lot of rice and green beans. My son and husband could live on green beans and I have a million different ways to prepare rice so it goes with just about anything.

There you have it!  Most recipes are listed on my pinterest account.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Fall Fun List

Fall is my absolute favorite time of year for several reasons:
A lot of my favorite people have birthdays this time of year (Asher, Ben, Dad, Jodie, Madi). It's Halloween season. College football. Perfect weather. Fall clothes.

Thanks for lots of great ideas, Betty!

Audrey's 3 Months Old & Asher's Still Sweet (Most of the Time)

So I guess I will start where I left off - Audrey's 2 month appointment. Turns out she was still teeny. So teeny she wasn't even on the charts. So we had to kick up the pace with her feedings. In order to do this we started supplementing with formula. Before we knew it she had filled out and even though we didn't think it was possible had gotten even more beautiful. She went from sleeping 6 hour stretches at night to up to 10 hours! Finally outgrew her preemie clothes and before we knew it - her newborn clothes as well! Sweet baby girl is even ready to (finally) move up to size 1 diapers! I have to admit that I'm kinda enjoying the fact that she is staying a little baby and letting me enjoy this precious time for a little longer than normal. She is just the sweetest, happiest little doll of a baby I could ask for.

She turned 3 months old last week. She is smiling and cooing non-stop and loves her brother. She laughed out loud at him and likes to watch him play. He loves her too and is so sweet with her. He can say Baby Audrey perfectly. Although I was kinda sad when he mastered it and quit calling her Baby Augie. She is drinking 5 ounces at a time and eats every 3 hours. She sleeps about 9-10 hours at night but has made it as far as 12 hours before I finally woke her up myself. Generally she goes down on her own at 9:30 and wakes up around 6:30. She had her first fever/cold this past weekend and took it like a champ. Only fussing a little and kicking the bug in record time. She is a great car baby. She loves her bath and the baby in the mirror. She loves her swing and her mobile at school. She is wearing 0-3 month clothes.

Asher is keeping us on our toes. He is a couple weeks shy of his 2nd birthday but decided to go ahead and get an early start on the "Terrible Twos". Temper tantrums are in full effect and obeying is not quite his strong suit. He is a fun, lovable kid when he wants to be. Which thankfully is a lot of the time. But when he wants to turn off the charm, he just goes right ahead and does it. I can't complain too much. I expected much worse when the new baby arrived.

He has started calling me Momma again after a year of referring to me as Mommy. I have noticed he particurlarly likes to call me Momma when he wants something. I think he knows I prefer that title. He has started acting like a baby from time to time. His impersonation of a baby is quite ammusing - lots of silly sounds and holding his hands up like a bunny rabbit. He loves for me to cradle him in my arms and say, "Ohhhh, my sweet Baby Ashie!"

Some other things he is doing right now:
  • nodding his head to music (sounds normal but is actually quite hilarious)
  • says "All better!" when something gets fixed or I kiss his boo boos.
  • wants me to kiss his boo boos
  • pretty much wants his Momma all the time
  • loves to color
  • loves Little Einsteins & Curious George and pretty much anything on Disney Junior
  • still loves "Hat Hat" and Toy Story
  • has perfected important phrases like "Roll Tide!", "Touchdown!" and "Alabama!"
  • is great at telling us what he wants and communicates really well. 
  • Gives orders like, "Dit Up!" (get up) 
  • When he wants something he yells it. For example, if he wanted water he would yell "Water!" until we respond. When we do - we ask him if he wants water and he smiles and says "Oh-tay!" like it is a brand new idea and he thinks it is brilliant!
  • loves school and talks a lot about his friends. Especially Will & Pappas (Pappas is his friend Harrison whom he calls by his last name)
  • Has a super cute, Southern accent. Everything has an extra syllable i.e. Wee-uhl (Will) It's pretty much the cutest thing ever.
  • His teachers tell me all the time that he is the most mature child in their class and talk about how smart he is and how well he communicates. They also claim he is one of the most well-behaved kids in the class to which I think either 1) They are just being nice or 2) He is saving up all his orneryness for when he gets home.
  • Gets frustrated when he can't do something.
  • Has started whining. (soooo not fun for me and his dad)
  • Loves to take a walk around the block with me at night to see the stars and the moon. He tries to reach for the moon and laughs.
  • Recognizes places like our church or our street when we are driving.
  • Calls our house "Mommy's house" 
  • Keeps us laughing and makes it to hard to stay frustrated with him for long. 
  • Comes crying to me when he gets in trouble by his Dada.
  • Says Hi and Bye to everything. And I mean everything. Hi candle! Hi table! Bye door! Bye house!
  • Is something else, I tell ya,
I'll try to post some pics of these kiddos in the next post. 

Monday, August 27, 2012

Better with Age

Recently, I turned thirty. 3-0. I can't believe I have 2 kids and and have entered my third decade. For the first time since we met, my husband and I are both in the same age bracket. But only for a year. He enters his forties next year. I told him to enjoy it while it lasts.

This part of my life is a part I have dreamed about since I was a little girl. When I used to play house and babies. And it is everything I dreamed it would be and more. Different. But better. I am so thankful to finally be here and soak it all in.

The night before my birthday, Ben took Asher on a wagon ride while I was inside nursing Audrey. During their roll through the neighborhood, Ben taught Asher to say "Happy Birthday" as a surprise for me. And my sweet, sweet boy, remembered! It was the first thing he said to me when he woke up. It was the best birthday greeting I have ever received.

To top that off, the very "next day, that same sweet boy told me "I love you, Mommy for the first time. Oh I had received several lub-yooooo's but never an all out I-Love-You-Mommy. And unprompted at that. He has been so good lately. so while he was sitting in my lap I told him to look at me and told him that he was a good boy. A very good boy. He smiled and hugged my neck with those chubby little arms of his and said it. And I melted. I'm not sure I have recovered. I called Ben and cried when I told him and then repeated the process with my mom.

Moments like these make my world go round.

And let us not forget about Audrey. My precious tiny girl. She is our little observer. Furrowing her brow and taking it all in. She loves to cuddle, eat and cuddle some more. Her personality is starting to come out and it looks like she may be more reserved than her brother, The Ham. She laughs and smiles but seems to save those moments for Mom and Dad. I'm thinking she's shy. And equally sweet.

Her big brother loves her very much and is already her little protector. The other day, we were trying to leave and my plan was to take Asher and his bag to the car and the come back to get Audrey and her things loaded up. Asher wasn't having any of that. He insisted Baby Durl (girl) came with us. Even if he had to carry her himself. Which he tried to do. That carrier weighs more than him, but he was grunting and giving it his all. He's a proud big brother. Lovin' and squeezin' on her all the time. And who can blame him? His sister if stinkin' adorable.

Oh and yay for Audrey! She has finally grown into newborn size clothes. She is 7 weeks old.  A lot of her preemie clothes still fit too but I am really starting to see a difference in her size. We go see Dr. P tomorrow and I can't wait to find out how much she weighs. Maybe I'll even blog about it? Promise to try.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Babies Keep Me Busy

Yep. It's been a loooooong time. And I honestly was at the point where I thought I would never put an entry on here again. I mean, come on, the last time I blogged I hadn't even announced that we were having a baby girl. And she is nearly 7 weeks old today.

I have missed writing about so much. These babies keep me busy. A good kind of busy. The kind of busy that is full of precious memories and moments filled with joy. There are some moments of real stress and feeling completely overwhelmed mixed in there as well. But all of that is my life right now. And I love this life. Even now, as I am writing this, Audrey is crying in my lap and Asher just knocked my glass of coke over onto our new end table. It's always something. But, I realized last night as I watched Asher playing with his toys that he has learned so much in the last couple of months. Heck, in the last couple of days. It is amazing to watch him discover new things, say new words and become more independent. To see him pick up a toy he used to need my help to play with and now he doesn't need me at all. In fact, the other day, I offered him my help and he said, "I dot (got) it." Really? He's got this? And you know what? He sure did. He did it all on his own and was so proud of himself when it was over. It's a bittersweet moment to have your son start to outgrow you at the tender age of 21 months. Alright, I'll be honest - it's a lot more bitter than sweet. But I guess that is what parenting is all about.

But I digress, as I watched him, I panicked and realized that these sweet moments aren't all going to stick in my tiny brain. I am going to forget them if I don't write them down somewhere. And that is exactly what this blog is for - So it may just have to be random and the posts may be brief from now on. But I am going to try harder to jot down the simple details of our life. Instead of waiting until I have blogged about the big moments (i.e. Sweet Audrey's birth - which WILL be blogged about soon, hopefully) and falling behind because I am totally overwhelmed with what I have missed. I will catch up on the "big" events as I have time. Otherwise, all these little snapshots of our Happy Life are going to go untaken and eventually forgotten.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Random Pictures

I had been doing so well at taking a daily picture until I went and jinxed myself by blogging about it. Figures. Oh are some recent shots for those of you that like a blog full of photos like I do.

 This was one week ago Sunday - perfect weather, windows open, Asher in a shortall and playing with his choo choo in the window sill. One week later it was freezing and they were calling for snow and sleet.

 My son, the truck driver, with his mullet of curls hanging out the back of his cap.

 Playing in his pink fort.

 Misty's umbrella is always a hit with the office kiddos.

 Came home sick from school with a fever - turned out it was just FOUR teeth. Poor wittle guy.

 We have a book that has Oma & Poppa's picture in it. He points to them and says Oma and Poppa all the time. The other day he pointed to them and signed "please". Of course I sent a video to my parents. Major guilt trip! They are coming next week - HA!

 I bought this chair for $3 at our church yard sale. It needed a screw tightened and a little wood glue. Benny (our building manager) fixed it right up and it is good as new! Now I just need to decide if I want to restain it or paint it.

 Eating his first popsicle. I bet this felt good on his sore gums.

 He has turned his closet into a miniature play room. He loves hanging out in there.
  Trying Davenport's pizza for the first time. This picture might insinuate he liked it, but he did not.

 Coloring with his best friend, Madi.
Enjoying a midmorning snack of pickles with Momma. Pregnancy cliches run deep.
Trying guacamole for the first time. This one was a hit!
 Loving that crazy bed head.
 He fell asleep getting his diaper changed during church. Wish he would go down that easily for me!
 This is his Mickey blanket that he LOVES! He's always burying his face in it and squealing. Thanks, Oma!
 Trying to put his pj's on and he kept evading me. I asked him if he wanted to be naked and he signed "please". I'm a sucker for that sign.
 This kid LOVES to wear a hat! He always asks to look in the mirror after we put it on him and then smiles really big at his reflection. Our little entertainer.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.
-1 John 3:16

Taking a picture of my littlest Valentine is hard to do these days. He's not much for sitting still. I'll try again this afternoon but for now, here are some photos of the sweets he took to school to share with his sweet friends and teachers!

Goody bags for his classmates.

They included fruit snacks, bubbles and stickers. Stickers are like gold to kids - at least my kid anyway!
Cookies for his teachers, whom we LOVE LOVE LOVE!
I got the recipe for these cookies on Pinterest. They are cake mix cookies. I used funfetti mix (my fave) and they are really good! And couldn't be easier. I HATE baking and this was a piece of cake (cheesy pun intended)!

And of course a plate of cookies for us to eat tonight after our dinner!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Sugar & Spice or Puppy Dog Tails?

Two weeks from tomorrow we will be in ultrasound finding out if we need to start shopping for this little bundle of joy or if we are going to be able to use the TONS of baby stuff we already have from Asher. Sure would be nice to just get all the totes down from the attic and start sorting it all out for "The Sequel" and save some major moolah by doing so. But a chance to buy some frilly little stuff would be fun too! This is a perfect example of a Win-Win situation. Either way, we are super excited!

I have to admit, I get a little defensive when people outside of our family say something like, "Hopefully this time it will be a girl!" I know they just mean that one of each would be fun. And it sure would be. Or they just assume that because I am a girl (and a girly girl at that), that naturally that is what I would like to have.  But as a momma of a boy I happen to LOVE having a son. I would not choose anything else for my first born. I know if I had a girl, I would LOVE having a daughter as well. But the "hopefully" has a certain "Boys aren't good enough" feel to it. When I hear that word and I am standing there with my adorable baby boy on my hip I want to point at him and say, "Why? Who wouldn't want another one of these?". I should probably chalk this up to pregnancy hormones and get over it. And honestly, I'm not upset at anyone that has ever said it. I understand. I know that there is nothing but pure excitement about the upcoming arrival of Baby #2 behind the sentiment. And even I myself, have days where I 100% want it to be a girl and then the next day I will change my mind and hope against hope that it's a boy. I just have to watch myself from defending the joys of having a son at every turn.

Well that was a lot of unnecessary venting. So let's get onto the point of this rant.

Most of the time people don't word it like that. They just make their humble prediction. And that is exactly what I am asking you to do. Make your selection on the survey on the right of this blog. The winner gets...bragging rights! 
I have had some signs that seem to point a certain direction in the gender department. But I won't give them away yet as not to taint the guessing game. Plus I don't want to be wrong and not blogging my own prediction allows me to save face!

15 days and counting...

Friday, February 3, 2012

My Son - the Fashionista

Project 365. I've actually been trying to do it. Take a photo of Asher every day this year. And starting sometime in July of his baby brother or sister as well. I haven't posted the photos anywhere. They are just on my iPhone. Maybe I will catch up and back date them by week. We'll see. I don't wanna get too far ahead of myself. But I had to share today's photo.

My son wearing two different shoes.

Yep, that's MY son wearing two different shoes to school today. And it was even somewhat on purpose. For some unexplained reason he begged by signing "please" and pointing to the shoe and then to his left foot for me to put his sneaker on. When I asked him if he REALLY wanted me to put his shoe on he nodded emphatically and patted his chest (please in ASL). That sign gets me every time. I must be growing as a momma to let him get away with this fashion faux pas.

He was pretty proud of himself walking in like this this morning. Even though he was a little off kilter since one shoe is flat and the other has a pretty thick sole. Also, that sneaker is too small. The pains we go through for fashion! 

The story goes - Ben picked out his clothes this morning. I vetoed the outfit. Part of the outfit was the pair of sneakers. Obviously, Ben is loving that Asher begged to wear the shoes that he picked out and is probably a little perturbed that I found it acceptable to wear mismatched footwear to school today but not the outfit that he had picked out for him. Oops!

Pregnancy Can Kill a Blog

So, I am pregnant! 18 weeks at this point. And the last time I blogged was 3 days before we found out. This pregnancy has been great as far as not being sick. In fact, I can't seem to stop eating. Especially Taco Casa. And because of that I am NOT complaining. Just letting you know that while I have not suffered from being so sick I am dehydrated and losing weight like I am on The Biggest Loser (like I did the first time around) but that I have been VERY tired. I am sure it has a little something to do with the fact that this time I am not only growing a human in my uterus but also chasing after a one year old.

Anyhow, my Mom Guilt is in full effect. I haven't blogged about finding out we are expecting - SURPRISE! I haven't blogged about Asher's first "real" Christmas. (Last year he was only 2 months old and had no idea what was going on.) I also haven't blogged about telling our parents about Baby Grizz the Sequel. Which, to my surprise, was just as fun as telling them the first time around. 

I haven't blogged a thing about this pregnancy and the uniqueness of it. Or all the amazing little things that happen during this special time that I had forgotten about since Asher was born. I am so excited about this precious little person growing in me. And I feel like I have done an AWFUL job of documenting that.

So - I am now well into my second trimester and I think I am finally turning a corner. Last night I took a walk around the neighborhood, cooked dinner AND cleaned up afterwards, did a load of laundry, finished the Mocking Jay and hung out with my hubby until 11:15! I'm usually zonked out by 8:30 at the latest. I'm hoping this means my second trimester burst of energy has finally arrived. I'm ready to clean, nest and finally catch up on this blog.

If you are reading this - thanks for not forgetting about us!