Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Menu Plan for this Week



My menu for this week. I had it mostly thought out yesterday, but just now getting it written down. :-)

Monday: potato soup & biscuits

Tuesday: spaghetti, sugar snap peas, and garlic bread

Wednesday: nachos

Thursday: ground beef gyros, salad

Friday: pizza

Saturday: carribean chicken (grilled hopefully!), broccoli, some other veggie

Head over to Org Junkie for more!

Monday, February 26, 2007

Do-Over

I originally wanted to start this post with a complaint about how I needed to have a do-over for this Monday morning. Did not start out as peachy-keen as I would have hoped. However, N2 is napping, N1 is enjoying Sesame Street, and I have a hot cup of coffee so I think things are looking up. I'm planning on taking a few minutes here to get organized, do a little menu planning for the week, pull out my Bible and read for a bit, and just refocus. The weekend was crazy-good with Daddy getting back home on Friday night (although the plane was a little late), and then all day yesterday with our youth group at church preparing and presenting our church's Valentine's Dinner/fundraiser Saturday night. To say we are pooped is a serious understatement! :)

Friday, February 23, 2007

Better Late Than Never!


Have you heard about the Ultimate Blog Party being hosted by 5 Minutes for Mom?! I have to admit, I've seen the buttons for it popping up EVERYWHERE, but this morning is the first time I took a minute and went and read about it. Y'all ... it's gonna be cool. New folks to meet, and the prizes ... ! Some seriously cool stuff there. :-)

Anyway, it doesn't officially start until March 2nd so you still have time get in the fun. Instructions for participating are here and here!


Thursday, February 22, 2007

It's Thursday...

Just to update:
  • I did get my Bible study done on Tuesday night ... standing strong against the temptation of American Idol's 2 hour show. (Now that we are past the ghastly audition stage, I can watch again).
  • I've done fairly good with keeping up with the housekeeping ... although I need to mop the kitchen today and I'm avoiding it. I actually may wait and do it tonight after the girls go to bed and then I don't have to keep them out of there.
  • I've read to at least one of the girls each day.
  • Need to work out our daily plan on paper ...

However, I also:

  • Made four meals for the freezer today from my Saving Dinner freezer recipes that I've been trying out. Two batches of ground beef gyros, one meatloaf, and one batch of Carribean Chicken that smelled HEAVENLY and is for the grill. If the weather holds up, guess what we'll be testing out next week, oh yes. :-)
  • Went to bed at 10 p.m. last night. It was pretty fabulous, too.

Nothing terribly earthshaking, but a few things have been checked off the list. :-) Now, N2 is napping, N1 is playing a computer games, and I'm going to steal a few afternoon minutes (with the window open to enjoy is almost-balmy weather), and watch an episode of West Wing on DVD. Life is good.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Girl Pics

All photos here compliments of Dasyas Photography ... aka, my Dad. :-) There is a few more in my flickr for the truly dedicated and/or family member. LOL

Girls Photo Shoot

Girls Photo Shoot

Girls Photo Shoot

Girls Photo Shoot

Girls Photo Shoot

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

An Ephiphany of Sorts

I am full of good intentions. Aren't we all?
  • I have a stack of parenting books that I'm dying to read.
  • I've been looking at some preschool things and conjuring up ideas for N1.
  • I have a start of a daily schedule for us that will help cut down on some of our TV time and just wasted time in general.
  • I want to get back into journaling on paper (where I can work out a few more of my private thoughts and struggles).
  • I have printed out several weeks work of my Motivated Moms housecleaning plan.
  • My Bible and Bible study are sitting out next to my favorite chair ready to go.

But, none of it is really getting done. Because I'm not acting on any of it. I've been setting myself up in some bad habits of procrastinating and doing the just-barely-getting-by thing for way too long. I've been making up way to many excuses and while some are good (or sound good), they are just excuses.

I'm getting ready to start fine-tuning some life areas and I'm already envisioning that some changes are going to hurt. :-) Before too long, our newest family member will be here, and if I don't have some new game plans in place before then, it's going to get even tougher around here to get things done. Time for making some changes ... all good, some hard, but much needed.

Now for a concrete plan of action ... for this week:

  • Make a DRAFT of what I think could be a workable daily plan for us. If we don't have it ready to run/test by Thursday or Friday, be ready to go with it next Monday. Things that I want to see happen with this plan are: specific times for TV and computer for N1 (and me *sigh*), our plan to do more reading aloud written down, and getting back to N1 having some sort of rest time with books. (We were doing better at that, but it has been easier for me to let her have computer time if I want to nap in the afternoon ... but books would be my first choice).
  • Work on keeping up with my Motivated Moms cleaning plan for THIS week. That's all I'm saying. Just try it consistently for one week. See what works and what doesn't. Fine tune what things need to be daily cleaning jobs and make note on what can go on a once a week schedule, twice a week, every-other-week, etc. Note: If you have not ever checked out Motivated Moms, I recommend it. I was fairly diligent with it after I had N1 and it was a great help to me to stay on top of stuff with a new baby. It's not expensive, and you can download their cleaning planner in several sizes, and with and without daily Bible reading suggestions. I use their 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 size (w/o the Bible reading plan since I have one that I'm working on) and then print out about a month at a time and put it in my planner. When I'm on top of it, it makes it easy for me to see my cleaning to-do's because it's right there in my calendar.
  • Do my Bible study lesson for this week. Seriously, the husband is out of town ... the only thing keeping me from getting it done tonight is me turning on the TV after the girls are in bed and vegging when I should be in the Word.

Anyway, just baby steps here to start with. As tempting as it is to overhaul everything today, I have at least realized that's probably not the best plan. :-) For right now, I'm going to go switch a load of laundry, refill my drink, and find the top of my desk. And, as a teaser, hopefully I'll be back later today with a picture post - we FINALLY took N1's 3-year pictures with my Dad, and N2's one-year and there are some fun ones to share.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Read to Me!



I'm going to participate in the Read to Me challenge over at Snapshot. Jennifer @ Snapshot is a new-to-me-blog and I'm not sure how I've missed out on her before as her blog is chock full of reading goodness, and this challenge is no exception. Go here if you are interested in participating and then here to actually join in the fun.

I love to read. Love, love, love it. When my first daughter was born, I had visions of long cuddling times of reading before naps and bedtimes ... really all the time. That was before I met N1. As she is Miss Super-Active, she has never been interested in sitting for any length of time to read. Those times I did try ended up being very frustrating for me and her. So I stopped trying.

Fast forward to now, and I've finally got a child who is ready to be read to. Yea! However, I'm 7+ months pregnant so lap sitting is not an option and we don't even want to talk about getting out of breath! :-) But, seriously, she is ready to be read to and I want to do it. My goals for N1 (3) are to read two books a day at least and if I can get in more with her, even better! I don't have any specific book list I'm going to try and work through. I'm just going to try and do two a day - one after lunch with both my girls, and then one at bedtime. (My 2nd daughter is just a year ... she loves to chew on look at picture books, and I'm going to have a goal of looking at two of those a day with her, probably at her nighttime bedtime (and then she'll hear me read to sister after lunch).

Nothing grandiose or awe-inspiring. Just baby-steps, but I'm hoping that it was set a pattern that I can keep up with even after #3 arrives and eventually add on to in the months to come.

Thanks, Jennifer for hosting this!

Menu Plan Monday - February 18


I went all out this week ... the husband is out of town until late Friday night (we put him on a plane last night) so I felt like I needed a little extra structure in our plans for the week to keep me from burn-out as a single (pregnant) mama for several days. I went ahead and made tentative plans for breakfast, lunch and dinner ... I can already tell that is going to be a huge help over the next several days. It was great getting up this morning and already have some sort of plan to start my day with. :-)

Monday:
Breakfast: pancakes
Lunch: grilled cheese, fruit
Dinner: little mini pizzas
Tuesday:
Breakfast: leftover pancakes with apple slices and/or yogurt
Lunch: with my Mom and sister
Dinner: leftovers from lunch (for the girls) or chicken nuggets; for me, grilled chicken salad
Wednesday:
Breakfast: cereal
Lunch: quesadillas
Dinner: hot dogs & fries, peas; for me, I may make a weight watcher meal that I love, but my husband is fired up about ... szechuan chicken with peanuts.
Thursday:
Breakfast: eggs, bacon
Lunch: sandwiches, raw veggies
Dinner: spaghetti, salad, garlic bread
Friday:
Breakfast: leftover pancakes if we still have them, or biscuits
Lunch: leftover spaghetti
Dinner: fish sticks, green beans
Saturday:
Breakfast: cereal
Lunch: McDonalds
Dinner: church Valentine's dinner hosted by youth (we "work" this event so we'll have leftovers after it's done) :-)
Head on over to Org Junkie for more weekly menus!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Menu Plan Monday - February 12

(Shhhh ... I'm not really online). :-)



Monday: South of the Border Quicke (freezer ground beef meal from Saving Dinner)
Tuesday: Chicken packets, fruit salad, either green beans or broccoli
Wednesday: Valentine's!! Greek takeout to eat at home. :-)
Thursday: Crockpot Chicken a la King, rice
Friday: Pizza
Saturday: Girl's Night Out for me; something easy for husband and girls. :-)

Head over to Org Junkie's for more menu inspiration!

In Absentia

Will probably be offline most of this week ... our schedule is nuts around here. Surprise houseguests coming in tomorrow, my blood-sugar appointment expected to eat up most of Tuesday's morning, and it could go on. :-) Need to prioritize!

Friday, February 09, 2007

Today's News

  • It's freezing outside today. Right now it's 23 degrees.
  • I love cold weather.
  • But I also need to run an errand and I don't want to get the girls out in said cold weather.
  • I have GOT to buy a wedding shower gift.
  • I'm making cinnamon rolls for lunch.
  • It's that kind of day.
  • The littlest munchkin is feeling poorly. Fever, sniffles, the works. I'm really hoping that her recent ear infection is NOT returning.
  • So I really don't want to get her out in this cold.
  • Off to pop the rolls in the over. I leave you with a few recent scrappin' pages I did.

    Split, Croatia

    This is the first picture that I have scrapped from my 1998 mission trip to Split, Croatia. I'm almost feeling the urge to work on the album. Almost.

    Sophie Marigold

    Giggling Girls
  • And the answer is...

    Pooter car” = “computer mouse”

    Totally see the connection now, but not when it was lost! And kudos to AmyJo who was the only one to guess it spot-on. (Others guessed it had to do with the computer, but not as close as AmyJo!) :-)

    Thursday, February 08, 2007

    Coincidence?

    You Are Olive Green
    You are the most real of all the green shades. You're always true to yourself.
    For you, authenticity and honesty are very important... both in others and yourself.
    You are grounded and secure. It takes a lot to shake you.
    People see you as dependable, probably the most dependable person they know.

    Wednesday, February 07, 2007

    Huh?

    If your daughter can't find her "pooter car", what would you need looking for? Any guesses?

    And it took me sometime to decifer this one... :-)

    Tuesday, February 06, 2007

    Flying By...

    One crazy day around here. The littlest munchkin is down for her morning nap, hopefully to shake the massive case of the crabbies out of her system. She apparently woke up on the wrong side of her crib this morning. And unfortunately, while this is one of those days where I would LOVE to hole up at home and just cuddle and play, we have to get out and run several errands. Groceries are a pressing need around here, I have a half-dozen ebay packages to drop off at the post office, and we're having last minute company for dinner tonight ... so the new recipe that I was going to try out on my unsuspecting family needs to be substituted for a tried and true that I can get ready on a busy day. :-)

    I also have a huge Punkin' Press order to finish for tomorrow. The youngest son of one of my favorite families in the whole world is getting married. (Lexie, this is the folks we have the couple shower to go to on Saturday!) I guess that means I need to get a gift this week for sure. Add that to my list for this week, too!

    I'll leave you with a newly discovered Good Thing - coffee (specifically Folgers Breakfast Blend) with a splash of chocolate milk in it. Seriously, Starbucks could sell it and call it some fancy-schmancy name and it would be a winner. Off to pour another cup and get some schtuff done whilst N2 naps and N1 plays on the computer.

    Monday, February 05, 2007

    I Have Something to Confess

    A while back I did another album class by Shimelle - this one was a free class and so much fun. I was able to compete it in a weekend. I realized today that while I put the pictures up on my Flickr, I don't know that they ever made it over here. :-)

    This is my cover. It's a picture of my from several years ago, but it worked. On all the pictures, I painted the edges with a dash of white paint, giving them all a small border. I had seen this done in someone's idea book and I'm addicted to this. Now I just need more white paint!

    I Have Something to Confess Album - Cover

    I Have Something to Confess Album - Not a Night Owl

    I Have Something to Confess Album - TV/DVD

    I Have Something to Confess Album - the Force

    I Have Something to Confess Album - Phone

    I Have Something to Confess Album - Plan

    I Have Something to Confess Album - Letters

    Menu Plan Monday - 2/4


    My menu for this week as I have it planned thus far. (Always contigent on what grocery money I end up being allowed to spend). :-) And, a clarification for several that asked last week ... the Saving Dinner recipes that I am using are NOT from one of those places that you go to and make bulk meals. The ones where they provide all the ingredients, and you just go and mix it up and take home the containers. These are just recipes from the Saving Dinner website - they provide the recipe, I provide the ingredients and the kitchen to assemble in. :-) Just didn't want to be misleading. And the meatloaf and BBQ chicken that I tried last week?? Very very good.
    Monday: Leftover Chili Blanco from last night ... sooooo good! With cornbread.
    Tuesday: Ginger chicken breasts with chinese coleslaw (another new recipe Saving Dinner, freezer meals)
    Wednesday: Breakfast Cassarole, fruit salad (I have to take food to Bible study today so I'm just going to double the breakfast cassarole and make one for Bible study and one for dinner.)
    Thursday: Ground beef gyros, salad (new recipe from Saving Dinner, freezer meals)
    Friday: Pizza
    Saturday: Continental Chicken (crockpot) ... may or may not make this. We have a couples wedding shower that night, and depending on time, a real dinner may or may not happen.
    More menus and inspiration can be found at Org Junkies!

    Sunday, February 04, 2007

    More Good Things

  • Snow coming down as we left for church this morning.
  • Getting to sing special music with an old friend that was in town this weekend.
  • Lunch with GOOD friends.
  • Lunch with good friends at McDonalds. (You know they are good friends if they are up for Sunday lunch at McDs!)
  • Watching our respective six kids play together at McD ... and watching my N1 play hard with my friend's 5 year old.
  • Catching up with a friend that doesn't ask the wrong questions ... "where are you going to PUT this baby?", "are you done now?" Those kinds of questions.
  • Being with kids that I would never hesitate my girls playing with and looking up too (even though they aren't that much older than my own munchkins).
  • Big Macs. Haven't had one of those in forever.
  • Home early on a Sunday afternoon. (Normally we spend Sundays at the grandparents and not that we don't love to go over there, it is fabulous to be home and the girls to both get Sunday afternoon naps).
  • The smell of soup simmering on the stove. Unbelieveable.
  • Plans to watch the Superbowl with my guy tonight.
  • And eat veggies and dip.
  • Probably curled up under the blankets on the couch.
  • Drinking diet root beer. Totally craving root beer right now.
  • We are so blessed.
  • Saturday, February 03, 2007

    Thursday, February 01, 2007

    Pretty Pitiful

    The weather I mean. Schools are closed here today because of the snowfall. While I would love to show you the weather that has stopped our fair city, by the time I had fed the girls, made DH's lunch and sent him on his way to work, put N2 down for a nap, and paid some attention to N1, it had all melted. For one who learned to drive in the winter in Canada and a husband from Ohio, this is quite the disappointment. Maybe EVENTUALLY we will get some of that real winter weather that everyone else is enjoying? :-)

    In other news, I had a couple requests for my Cheddar Chicken Spaghetti recipe so here goes. Credit for this recipe goes to Menus for Moms:

    1 package (8 oz) spaghetti, broken in half (I used 1/2 whole wheat and 1/2 regular spaghetti)
    2 cups cubed cooked chicken
    2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
    1 can condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
    1 cup milk
    1 T diced pimientos (optional)
    1 can green chilis (optional)
    1 Tbsp. tarragon
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon pepper

    Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the chicken, 1 cup cheese, soup, milk, pimientos, green chilis, tarragon, salt and pepper. Drain spaghetti, add to the chicken mixture and toss to coat.

    Transfer to a greased 13 x 9 x 2 baking dish. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Bake, uncovered at 350 for 20-25 minutes or until heated through.

    Lastly, I have found a new cool website for my preschooler. (I think credit should go to Cheryl ... it was mentioned on the education threads at the Women at Home boards). It's the childcareland.com site ... it seems (from what I could tell) that the site is geared to those that run a daycare for preschoolers. There are some great little learning activities and lots of freebies to print out. Last night I printed several templates for months of the year and days of the week so that I can start to work on that with N1.

    February 1 Art Project

    Today's craft: super easy and I had everything I needed. Card stock heart (they supply the template even), squares of pink vellum (they used tissue paper which I didn't have, but I have LOADS of pink vellum from baby shower invites I made someone), and glue sticks. Totally fun. :-)