Monday, May 31, 2010


Today was the Savers 50% clothing sale. I decided that I would go whenever I woke up and Joe would watch the baby. Apparently, it turns out I naturally wake up around 6:30. When the hell did THAT happen? That was a rhetorical question. I know that happened about 20 months ago ;) Anyway, I was able to get up, get ready and be there by 7:00 when they opened. There wasn't really an early crowd and I was able to go without Devon so that made things faster and easier. I also felt like I got to see everything before it was too picked over. I got some GREAT stuff. I love playing dress up with the kids!

For Devon:
PJ's: 1
Shorts: 5
t-shirts: 11

For the little lady:
PJ's: 2
Dresses: 12
Out fits: 1
Sweaters: 3

All 39 items for $53. Can you believe that?!?! $53 bucks!!! Amazing. These clothes will probably last my kids til the next sale in September. Love me some Savers 50% off sale!!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Garage sale finds

I haven't been garage "sale-ing" in forever. I have been wanting to go for months, but Joe always seems to have to work, someone gets sick, I'm too tired ... the list goes on. I decided that I was definitely going to go this weekend and it finally worked out. Mom and Dad chauffeured me around and even picked me up so I didn't waste any time driving out to meet them. Quite the time saver. We hit up 2 yard sales before we even got out of my neighborhood. I am not much of a haggler so I'm sure I over paid on a few things, but when stuff is already so cheap I don't mind. I will usually ask for a dollar off and they usually say yes to a pregnant lady ;)

I picked up this super cute foot stool that I can turn into something sweet for the little lady's room for $5. It needs to be reupholstered, but that is an easy fix. I also got Joe a tape measure because it would seem that they always go missing around our house. $2

I got a bag full of 27 plastic eggs for Devon for $.50 and a brand new wok for $3 that retails for $30. Score!

When I told Devon they were plastic eggs he didn't skip a beat. He went right to the cabinet, got out the egg cooker and filled it with eggs. He's so smart! But seriously, how cute is that?!?

I got this tin for the little lady's room for $2. What little girl doesn't need a few nick-knacks?

And my FAVORITE purchase of the day is this adorable doll cradle. I think other than making some simple bedding for it I am going to leave it just as it is. I got it for $4.

I had to take a 2 hour nap to make up for all the shopping, but in the end it was worth getting up at 6:45. $13.50 worth of fun!

Monday, May 24, 2010

They're just clothes, right?

I have a list of "things to do" that are not urgently needed to be completed, but if I can get them done before the little lady arrives I will consider myself somewhat amazing ;) One of the things on that list was to go through Devon's old clothes and sort them. I have kept every piece of clothing he has worn his entire life. I have them in 6, vacuum sealed storage bags in the top of his closet. I needed to sort them into a throw away pile, a try-to-sell-to-a-kids-re-sale-clothing-store pile, a keep-for-Devon-when-he-gets-older-pile, a give-to-the-new-baby-pile and a clothes-from-his-first-year-turn-into-a-blanket pile.

The throw away pile was easy. Throw out anything that was showing age spots, yellowing or permanently stained. The keep for Devon pile was also easy. Sentimental stuff. I kept his take home from the hospital onesie, a teeny tiny pair of shoes, some hats, and a few other items that have special meaning to me. I just want him to be able to see just how small he was when he was born. He probably won't care when he's older, but at least he will have a few things and know that I cared enough to save them for him.

I had an OK time with the blanket pile, but the try to sell stuff was, lame as it may sound, tougher than I thought.

I consider myself to be able to get rid of stuff pretty easily when I know I won't ever use/wear/need the item ever again, but I had the hardest time deciding to part with his clothes. Nothing good will come of saving them. They are just taking up space so WHY can't I just get rid of them? I KNOW I sound ridiculous ... They're just clothes. I'll truly never need them again. I'll just blame the hormones, but it feels like his babyness went so fast and now he's a toddler and all these little clothes that I painstakingly selected for him no longer fit. Even though I had a hard time adjusting for the first few months following his birth, I really was (and still am) a happy Mom. I really feel like I did savor the time when he was so little. I baby wore him every where. I have 4 carriers. I don't think his bum touched a grocery cart seat until he was over a year old because I loved having him close to me all the time. He's 20 months now and I still pop him in the carrier on occasion only now when I wear him on my back instead of my belly he puts his arms around me and says,"Hug". Getting up for feedings was so challenging, but more than that I remember waking up and seeing him asleep with the moon light on his little face.

I always hated it when people would say,"Enjoy this time. It goes so fast." I always thought it was such a trite and condescending thing to say to a new Mom. It does go fast, but LIFE seems to go by faster once you have kids. The same people also annoyingly offer up the equally eye-roll worthy,"Enjoy your sleep now because you'll never get a full night's rest again!" Lame. Thanks for that totally useless, snarky, non-advice.

Anyway, I was sorting through the clothes and got a little weepy when Devon handed me a shoe that clearly would not fit him. He sat down next to me, took off his size 6 shoes and said,"On! On!" so I would put the blue, size 2 shark covered shoes on him. It just made me SO sad! I had to explain to him that he was growing into a big boy and they wouldn't fit. He seemed confused until I put them on him anyway and they fit like the glass slipper on Cinderella's step sisters. He took the shoe off his foot, went and got a book and we read for half an hour. It's a sad day when you have to start telling your baby that he's big. OK so it's just sad for Mom's ;)

Monday, May 17, 2010

Purees and Shepherd's Pie

I made my own purees when Devon was a baby, but he didn't like them so I stopped making them. I don't think they were smooth enough or something, but I gave up. Once he switched to solids he loved vegetables and ate green beans like his life depended on it. He ate peas for a snack. Now all he does with veggies is spit them out. So I have gone back to doing purees again and have been mixing them into his food (thanks to Jessica Seinfeld's Deceptively Delicious cookbook). I eat vegetables no problem, but it is great for Joe and I to get an extra serving or two in where we can. I have been doing one vegetable a week, freezing it and vacuum sealing it in ready-to-cook-with portions. I don't have a lot of freezer space, but I try to have something on hand. I still haven't gotten a freezer chest yet so, Honey, if you are reading this ... hint hint! ;) I use the water bottle ice cube trays since they melt faster when cooked. They are about an ounce per section.

Yes, that's a broccoli puree "Popsicle" that he asked for. He didn't eat much of it, but he got some of it down. There is also some puree in the pasta.

Shepherd's Pie has vegetables in it already, but why not add a few more for variety?!

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
1 pound ground lamb (*Lamb grosses me out. OK I've never had it, but I KNOW I wouldn't like it. I used all beef)
1 cup beef or chicken broth
1 tablespoon tomato paste (*I used an entire small can. Better flavor)
1 teaspoon chopped fresh or dry rosemary
1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley
1 cup frozen peas (*I also add corn and a few purees)
2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup milk (any fat content)
Kosher salt to taste

1. Preheat oven to 375°F.

2. In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, heat the oil, then add the onion, carrot, purees and meat. Cook until browned, 8 to 10 minutes.

3. Drain the fat and add the broth, tomato paste, and herbs. Simmer until the juices thicken, about 10 minutes, then add the peas.

4. Pour the mixture into a 1 1/2-quart baking dish; set aside.

5. Meanwhile, bring the potatoes to a boil in salted water. Cook until tender, about 20 minutes; drain.

6. Mash the potatoes with the butter, milk, and salt.

7. Spread them over the meat mixture, then crosshatch the top with a fork.

8. Bake until golden, 30 to 35 minutes.

Floors ... remodel

Joe set up the computer so I am back online and not totally dependent on my iphone. The only bad thing is the computer is in our bedroom along with all the other stuff from the study. It's at the foot of the bed and while our room has much better lighting and circulation than the study, it is just one more thing we have to maneuver around. I don't even make the bed anymore. What's the point?!?!

We are also putting in wood floors in the upstairs living room. I told Joe that if we couldn't get all the floors done BEFORE the little lady arrives then I didn't want to do it until she was 1 because I didn't want to have to deal with all the mess with a tiny new born and a toddler about to (hopefully not) enter into the terrible twos.

Today he ripped out the carpet upstairs leaving Devon and I trapped in the kitchen and living room all day. That's how it felt anyway. Basically the only semi-clean places in the entire house. We went to the gym in the morning, but in the afternoon we had to wait for some people to come and look at the floors so we didn't have enough time to go anywhere and be back home by the time they were supposed to be here. I was SO exhausted and it was my own fault (since I stayed up til midnight and got up with Devon at 6:45), but leaving the house would have saved my life and gotten me through the afternoon.

By the way the jerks never showed. Typical.

I know I sound spoiled ... complaining about the process of putting in new wood flooring and how inconvenient it is. I know that Joe is working so hard to get it done as well as the stress and extra work that gets heaped on him with his regular day-to-day job. He is doing a lot of the prep work himself as well as doing the landscaping. He is exhausted at the end of the day. BUT ... I am uncomfortable as it is being pregnant and I have to live in it with a toddler!!! I am somewhat of a neat freak and all this clutter has literally given me a constant headache and cleaning anything but the bathrooms is pretty much useless. I just hope that it all gets done before the baby arrives.

Oh, and if anyone wants to save us from the mess, feel free to invite us over for a play date ;)

Friday, May 14, 2010

Time Out!

Long story short:
- We had a leaky roof that leaked rain into our study.
- We discovered that we had a MAJOR mold problem in the study and had to tear out some of the walls and the carpet to get rid of it.
- We had to re-roof the roof.
- EVERYTHING that was in the study is now in the master bedroom in stacks and piles ... SO aggravating to sleep surrounded by computer parts, wires and random junk that you can't throw out, but don't really have anywhere to put it.
- We are in the process of putting in new wood floors (YEAH YEAH YEAH), but God knows how long that will take.

To sum up ... no computer during the process. I was able to jump on Joe's work lap top to write this and then it's back to my iphone and I am not willing to do any sort of major computer work from there. Such a pain. No more blog posts (or emails really) until the floors are in and everything is put back into the study which could be a few weeks or a few days ... who knows.

Miss me!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Tuesday: Bibimbap

I made this recipe by request from Joe. It has an unusual name, but it's basically rice, ground meat and vegetables. It's one of those great recipes that you can make nearly everyone happy with and you can choose what veggies you want. This can also be easily made to please vegetarians and omit the meat and maybe add in some tofu. Oh and soy beans would be good, too. By the way, we eat out of Tupperware containers at our house. Well, Joe does. He hates the sound of the fork hitting a glass plate hence the not-so-fancy-bowl that I used for the picture.

3/4 cup soy sauce
6 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
4 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 pound ground turkey, beef, or pork (*I almost always use Turkey instead of beef).
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 slices onion
4 cloves of garlic, minced
4 large eggs
2 cups cooked rice (Chinese takeout works well)
Assorted vegetables (shredded carrot, bell pepper, broccoli, canned baby corn, spinach, bean sprouts, red onion, whatever you want)

1 Mix together the first three ingredients; set aside.

2 In a pan, brown the meat, onion and garlic in half the vegetable oil, about 5 minutes. Add half the soy-sauce mixture and continue cooking until the liquid is absorbed, 3 to 4 minutes. Add in vegetables and saute until cooked, but firm.

3 In another pan, fry the eggs in the remaining vegetable oil (*I used Pam cooking spray), 4 to 5 minutes. The egg is supposed to be sunny side up, but Joe is not a fan so I do them over easy. You basically just put the egg on top of the veggies then cut it up and mix it into the food so the yolk becomes part of the sauce. Either way you do it (or not at all by omitting the egg all together) it doesn't matter.

4 Divide the rice among 4 bowls. Arrange some vegetables and meat and an egg in each. Drizzle the remaining soy-sauce mixture over the top.

Tomorrow will be "left over day" since we have plenty of Bean Burrito Casserole and Bibimbap in the fridge. No cooking until Thursday!

Monday: Bean Burrito Casserole

I don't think I've ever made a casserole since I've been married. Like ... ever. They always sounded to bland and mushy. However, I have been on a desperate search for food that will be good for dinner, even better tasting for lunch the next day and something I've never cooked before. If it's freezable I may just pass out in sheer gratitude. So I went to my favorite (and only) web site where I get all of these fabulous recipes ( and searched casseroles. I stumbled upon this one and it sounded good and not very "casserole-y" so I tried it. This whole week I will post all the recipes I make. I went to the store and bought all the food I would need for the entire week. I usually try to go twice, but I find when I do that even though the food is more fresh by the time Saturday rolls around, I have over spent on my weekly budget. I spent $85 on all the groceries so you know that you could make all 5 of these recipes for that amount more or less depending on what you already have on hand in your pantry. (I usually wait until the end of the week to do chicken recipes because I buy frozen chicken breasts from Costco and those won't go bad.)

For the filling
1 onion, chopped fine
4 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons olive oil
two 1-pound cans black, pinto, or pink beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup tomato sauce (*I used a 12 oz. can since that what I had and didn't want to waste it. I think it made it better and not as dry as it would have been)*
2 teaspoons ground cumin
4 fresh or pickled jalapeno chilies if desired, seeded and chopped (wear rubber gloves) (*I feed this to Devon so I used canned, MILD green chilies instead of jalapenos. Even better if you ask me)*
1/4 cup chopped fresh coriander if desired
*Joe needs to have meat with his meals so I added 1 lb. of hamburger and it was SO much heartier. I also added a small can of sliced olives ...yum! Next time I would add corn and cilantro. *

twelve 7- to 8-inch flour tortillas warmed
1 1/2 cups grated Monterrey Jack (about 6 ounces) (*I used cheddar)
guacamole and tomato salsa as accompaniments

Make the filling:
In a large heavy skillet cook the onion and the garlic in the oil over moderately low heat, stirring, until the onion is softened, add the beans, and mash about half of them coarse with the back of a wooden spoon. Add the tomato sauce, the cumin, the chilies, and salt and black pepper to taste, simmer the mixture, stirring, for 3 to 5minutes, or until it is thickened slightly, and stir in the coriander.

Working with 1 warmed tortilla at a time and keeping the others covered, spread about 3 tablespoons of the filling down the center of each tortilla and roll the tortillas, enclosing the filling but keeping the ends open. Arrange the burritos, seam sides down, in one layer in a baking dish, sprinkle them with the Monterrey Jack, and bake them, covered with foil, in the middle of a preheated 350°F. oven for 10 minutes. Serve the burritos with the guacamole and the salsa.

This is a great vegetarian dish as is and cooks up super fast and easy. Although my husband liked the flavor he said it was basically,"Burritos in a pan." It defiantly needs the avocado, salsa and sour cream and would be great with some Spanish rice and watermelon. I think this is OK for dinner, but great to freeze pre-portioned for a quick and easy lunch.

Monday, May 10, 2010

27 weeks

I bought this painting before I knew I was having a girl because I liked it so much. I don't know why, but I do. All the pictures are of things I have bought to go in the baby's room. I don't know how I will arrange everything so it doesn't look cluttered, but I'm sure I'll figure it out.

Delivery day still seems so far away, but now that I'm to this point it feels like it went from,"18 weeks and you're having a girl," and a second later to,"You're 27 weeks." Craziness. I think once I get to the 30 week marker time will somehow speed up.

I think my luck is running out a bit with having an easy pregnancy. I say that with a wink because the things I am describing as "having a difficult pregnancy" are not really a big deal, but they are the first hard things I have had to deal with this far since it has been a breeze up to this point. Going to the gym isn't as easy as it once was. I have been running a very slow 10 minute mile for 2 miles (yes, BOTH my feet leave the ground at some point)plus an extra mile on the elliptical. I get a little bit of back pain on my left side when I start the run, but it eventually goes away after a few minutes so I feel OK to keep it up. I also have been getting some pain in my feet and have started to feel some pressure on my belly probably from baby pushing out. None of these things make me feel like I should stop since they are temporary (and don't fall under the "stop running when BLANK happens" list), but I have heard that women stop running sooner with their 2nd child so who knows when I will have to call it quits for a while. They probably stop because they know that after the gym they can't go home and nap like they used to. They have a little one to play with until nap time and they're just too damn tired to burn out all that energy like a mouse on a wheel. I get that. Anyway, it's on my list of things to ask my doctor at my next visit which is coming up. I go in to see her every 2 weeks now which means I am getting closer to the end.

At my last appointment my OB said that the baby was nearly twice the size she should be so she moved up my due date a week to August 2nd. She did say that I may not stay a week ahead if the baby's weight gets back to normal, but when it gets down to it it doesn't really matter if my date is a week this way or that way because the baby will be born whenever she's ready to come out. I am not going to get pregnant again so I would like to be pregnant for a while ;)It would be cool for her to be born on her original due date of 8.9.10 so if she goes all the way til the end that would be a bonus. Not a day past though ... I will be induced on the 9th if things don't happen on their own. Chop chop little lady!

In a weird way I am happy to report that I have experienced my first situation with true "water weight gain" because those strange 3 pounds that appeared in 3 days DISAPPEARED literally overnight plus an extra just for spite. Yes ma'am I lost 4 pounds from one day to the next. So strange. Too bad true weight gain doesn't happen that fast.

I have gathered a few more things to decorate the little lady's room with and I think things are starting to come together. I don't want to buy an entire bedding set like I did with Devon. I got "gender neutral" bedding so I could use it for 2 kids, but I'm having a GIRL ... I want pretty pink roses and Frenchy-French looking stuff not red, blue and green alphabet letters! It's totally perfect for Devon and it works for his big boy room, but not for my new little lady. I am toying with the idea of making my own bumper, skirt and quilt and buying the bed sheet. It doesn't look THAT complicated, but I am not sure I have the energy. Usually in the evenings I either read or watch TV and I just want to sit there. Sewing requires lots of up and down, starting and stopping and trips to the iron. It's a lot of work, but I haven't done ANYTHING creative in a while and I may need to do it for that reason alone. If I find some fabric that I love I could be swayed.