Thursday, January 29, 2009

Pajama Day

Hip Hip Hooray!!!!
It's Pajama Day!!!!
(in the south it is pronounced "Pa JAW ma" Day) Which I must admit is sounding more and more natural than "Pa JAM a Day." What's happening to me and my good old Western roots?

anyway...Hip Hip Hooray!
Lauren put her backpack on 30 minutes before it was time to leave for school this morning. She made sure she didn’t forget it today.

After we dropped her off at school Tyler and I came home to prepare for my Mom's Club monthly meeing. While I prepared, Tyler turned off all the lights in the house. Even those lights which required him to drag out the pantry stool.

When I asked him "what the heck?!* (*no I didn't say heck since we seem to be having a problem with Lauren saying that word. Let's try that again....) When I asked him "What are you doing on the counter?"
He quickly flopped onto the floor in absolute guilt. Although I'm not sure what he did wrong; by the looks of things it was definitely something serious.
After shedding some fake tears it was finally time for us to head out for the Mom's Club Monthly Meeting.
At the meeting Tyler clung to me for the first hour and a half but he finally warmed up during the last 20 minutes before we had to leave to pick up Lauren from school. Once he warmed up, however, he was roaring to go. Him and Matthew (birthday boy from yesterday) were laughing and chasing each other all over the room. There were about four 2-to-3 year-olds all racing around each other. I hated to break up all the fun but we had to pick up Lauren.

For dinner tonight I made "Five Spice Vegetable Noodles & Miso Soup." Here are some of the vegetables from tonight's dinner.
I didn't think this dinner was blog worthy and neither did Matt. I suggested that this cookbook didn't seem that spectacular but Matt made the suggestion (had the nerve to suggest) that I just "didn't know how to make the Asian recipes correctly." Them's fightin' words.
Regardless of what we thought about the meal we both ate a full serving and also the kids' leftovers. After dinner it was smoothy time. Low-fat, low-sugar Strawberry yogurt, fat-free milk and quartered fresh strawberies all blended together into supreme Yummy-Ness. And in good old 'smoothy making anticipation,' the kids covered their ears before the blender ever went off.

Tyler Toilet Training Update: #1
(same as #0)
He refuses to sit/stand/do backflips on the pot. We have overly exaggerated the excitement of a "potty party" but currently, they consist of me dragging a diaperless and crying Tyler to the potty chair; forcing him down onto it and then releasing my hands so he can immediately stand back up. At this point we clap and dance and shout that we had a successful "potty party." Tyler gives hi-Fives all around and I kneel down and pray that he learns to go tinkle in the potty so he can go to pre-school by August.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Thai Red Chicken Curry with white rice

So most of the recipes this week have looked a lot like this. Lots of veggies, minimal chicken and some various asian spices. This one was okay....
Spicy Chicken Stir Fry with Fried Rice
but nothing knocked our socks off until tonight's dinner.
I made Thai Red Chicken Curry and served it over white rice. It was spicy, creamy and the chicken and potatoes were perfectly tender. I wish it wasn’t so filling so I could go have another serving.

Thai Red Chicken Curry
My changes are in red italics
Serves 4

1 onion
1 T. peanut oil
1 2/3c. cocunut milk I used 13.5 oz can which came out about exact
2 T. red curry paste
2 T. Thai fish sauce (nam pla)
1 T. light brown sugar
8oz tiny new potatoes
1 lb skinless chicken breast portions, cut into chunks I used 2 chicken breasts
1 T. fresh lime juice I used 1/2 T. from concentrate
2 T. fresh mint, finely chopped I used 1 t. dried mint
1 T. fresh basil I used 1 T. basil herb blend I had in the fridge (the gel that comes in a tube.)
2 kaffir lime leaves, shredded omitted
1-2 fresh red chilies, seeded and finely shredded I used 1 jalapeno chopped and added some only to my dish
salt and ground black pepper
lime wedge to garnish and then give to Lauren to eat

1. Cut the onion into wedges.
2. Heat a wok until hot, add the oil and swirl it around. Add the onion and stir-fry for 3-4 minutes.
3. Pour in the coconut milk, then bring to a boil, stirring. Stir in the curry paste, fish sauce and sugar.
4. Add the potatoes and seasoning I just used some salt and pepper and simmer gently, covered, for about 20 minutes.
5. Add the chicken chunks and cook, covered, over low heat for another 5-10 min.
Stir in the lime juice, chopped mint and basil. Serve at once, sprinkled with the shredded kaffir lime leaves and red chilies.

Source: The Asian Kitchen by Lillian Wu

Check out this cookbook. It gives detailed pictures of all the ingredients as well as a picture for each step and then a whole page picture of the completed dish. This is my type of cookbook!

happy hump day

Lauren had a rough start today. She was fighting with and yelling at Tyler and using a "bad attitude" tone so as we were loading up in the car I was all about the threats and taking away the evening's snack...instead of remembering to grab her school backpack. In the car and almost to her school I realized I forgot her backpack. When I told her this she started crying and wanted to go back home to pick it up. (in her backpack is a folder for her to bring home her homework and also a cup for snack time) She tried to calm down but her lip was still trembling when the teachers came to get the kids. As soon as the car door was opened she just fell apart crying that she didn't want to go to school.

It seems she calmed down and had a good day because she was all grins and excitement when I picked her up after school. She said she even got to use a Mickey Mouse cup instead of the dreaded white cup normally reserved for those who forget their drink cups. ??

While Lauren was at school Tyler and I headed out to Chuck E. Cheese for a friend's birthday party. Miss Carey threw a fun 3rd birthday party for playgroup friend Matthew with lots of game tokens, pizza, drinks and Elmo cupcakes. (we had to leave before the Elmo cupcakes to pick Lauren up from school but we thoroughly enjoyed everything else.

First up the Train Set. Surprise, Surprise but he really liked this one.

releasing some aggresion with the sledge-hammer


and here's a sweet picture taken in a photo booth for just one token
a cartoon Chuck E. Cheese drew our picture
(if you look closely at that picture I'm almost choking Tyler trying to get him to hold still and look at the camera. he was ready to get out of the booth by then.)

This evening we iced up our sugar cookies we made yesterday.

sprinkles too
The kids each got one cookie but this was not considered a snack. Remember, Lauren lost her snack priviledge this morning...and Tyler doesn't really care if this cookie is called a snack or not...a cookie is a cookie.
after the sugar set in the kids did some playing with Thomas. Lauren really got into it.

Dinner tonight was fabulous. This was the first recipe from this week (Asian inspired meals) that was good enough for me to take the time to actually type out the recipe. I will do that in a following post.
In the meantime....
Enjoy this picture from a couple of days ago. Lauren and Tyler made orange & banana smoothies. Lauren didn't like the noise from the blender so she covered her ears. Tyler didn't mind the noise from the blender but always likes to do what Lauren does so he covered his ears too.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

sugar cookies

This evening we made sugar cookies. I had Matt occupy Tyler so Lauren and I could measure and mix all the ingredients. While the dough was hardening in the fridge we gave the kids their baths and then it was time to make up the cookies.

While the kids were bathing I put all the cookie cutters out on their little table and then rolled out the dough. When it was time I had each child grab one cookie cutter and come cut out a shape. Tyler cut the first shape and while he put the cutter back and grabbed another one Lauren came and cut out her shape. This back and forth worked tremendously well. I just may make these again.

Tomorrow we'll ice them and decorate them with spinkles and chocolate chips. (maybe I'll even take a picture.)

sorry it's not much of a post tonight, but I need to watch the Bachelor which I tivo'd last night. I hear they go on the set of GENERAL HOSPITAL. The only thing better than a pairing of the Bachelor and General Hospital would be a mix of Dr. Laura and General Hospital. But then again Dr. Laura Would Not Approve of anything the characters of GH do. Oh well. I still love my fantasy land and friends.

25 Random Things About Me

since my friend Claudine was brave enough to post a Facebook meme on her blog I thought I would step it up too. There just may be some things you don't know about me.

25 random things about me

1. My Mom wanted to name me Christina but my Dad said that sounded too much like a girl’s name.
2. My husband is my best friend.
3. I listen to Dr. Laura everyday (M-F) and agree with a lot of what she says.
4. I watch General Hospital everday (M-F) and have been for about 10 years or so. (Team JaSam!)
5. My daughter weighed 6 lb 1oz when she was born and my son weighed 9 lbs 12 oz. wow!
6. My daughter was born at 36 weeks and spent her first 12 days in the NICU (at Sacred Heart in Eugene.)
7. I love to cook every night and I rarely repeat a recipe.
8. I’m terrified of the horribly disgusting NUTRIA.
If I see one and you are next to me I will jump into your arms.
9. I have read the entire Twilight series and have seen the movie twice (once at the Fabulous Fox Theatre.)
10. I can say turd in Spanish and Japanese.
11. I didn’t learn to drive a stick-shift until I bought a manual transmission Acura Integra. My boyfriend (now husband) had to drive it off the lot for me.
12. My DH and I were scammed by the policia in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil.) I got to go for a ride in a cop car while Matt withdrew some bribe money from an ATM in a Blockbuster video store.
13. This really isn’t a random about me but about my then boyfriend/now husband. He had some money burning a hole in his pocket and bought a 1969 Cadillac from the want-ads, rented a sawsall, and chopped the top off of it. He bought some long horns off the internet and attached them to the front of his new Cadillac convertible. We entered it into the Function for Junction: Classic Car Cruise-in in Junction City. (I’m sure we gave some die-hard car-collectors a coronary.)
14. I went to high-school with the 2000 Playboy Playmate of the Year. (yes, we were the best of friends. …she was actually jealous of me…yes…it’s true…well no/maybe.)
15. In college I lived down the street from where Steve Prefontaine died in a car accident. They filmed a movie about him while I was living there. I tried to catch a glimpse of Jared Leto but never did.
16. My favorite pizza is Canadian Bacon and Pineapple with jalapenos.
17. My favorite dessert is a good Tiramisu. (it has to be good though)
18. When I was 4, I painted a good part of my parents’ brand new 1980 Volvo Station wagon a light blue with some paint I found in the garage. I believe my parents’ discovery of what I did is my earliest memory.
19. I was voted Class Clown by my high-school senior class. (I always thought it should’ve been best legs though.)
20. I’ve lived in a very liberal part of the US and a very conservative part. I think this has given me a healthy and balanced view on life.
21. I’ve ridden on the back of a 1995 Harley-Davidson Dyna Wide Glide from Eugene, OR to Boise, ID and from Eugene to Sacramento, CA. TWICE EACH.
22. When I was in elementary school my husband was in high-school. (doesn’t that sound kind of wrong?)
23. I’m the only one in the South who knows how to pronounce Ponce de Leon. (and No! it is not Pawnz duh LEE-on.)
24. I occasionally faint when I see a Doctor or anything that makes me think of Drs. (notches in my belt: dentist, eye-doctor, ultra-sound technician, phlebotomist and counting.)
25. I’ve sang karaoke with one of Matt’s college chemical engineering professors. Omg.

Feel free to comment with your Random 25.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Weekly Menu

This week is Asian week. Taken from my cookbook, "The Asian Kitchen" by Lilian Wu. (I can't find most of these recipes published online.) As far as I can tell...none are. I'm going to just post my recipes and as I make them....if they are beyond words (super fantabulous)....I'll write them out with any changes.

Monday: Spicy Chicken Stir-fry and Egg Fried Rice.
Tuesday: Stir-fried Vegetables with Cilantro Omelet
Wednesday: Thai Red Chicken Curry with White Rice
Thursday: Five-spice Vegetable Noodles & Miso soup
Friday: Spicy Fish Fritters & oven baked french fries
Saturday: Beef Noodle Soup and Baby Ginger Rosti
Sunday: left-overs

See Y'all Soon.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

mostly food, but a little attitude too

Mr. and Miss Attitude took over the house this week...

not here they are looking quite sweet and angelic:

Tyler climbed up into his dump truck and requested I take a picture of him.
and Lauren requested a picture of her loading up her self-made garbage. (scissors & scrap paper = big mess on my floor)
It was right after this that the ugly-ness started. Lauren adopted an unacceptable bad attitude and was told to sit on the naughty chair. On the way to the naughty chair she screamed at the top of her lungs (releasing negative "naughty" energy right?) and then when she sat her little self down on the naughty chair she shouted, "Mommy just wants me to poke her in the nose."
(what?! oh no you didn't..just try it little girl....)
Tyler's bad attitude didn't start until a bit later so we'll be sure to touch up on that in due time.
In the mean time let's talk about Food. (this is a wannabe foodie blog ya'know)
Tuesday, I made a Greek Low-Fat Vegetable Soup to go along with my Greek inspired menu. This was very low-cal and quite tasty but it just wasn't filling enough. I ate 2 freezer biscuits before I felt satisfied. This would be a great lunch however.
Wednesday, was Chicken with Yogurt Sauce and Peasant Risotto (the risotto was from my newest Italian Coobook.) The cookbook was a Christmas gift from my Mom's Club "Secret Mom." Every month we exchange a small gift with our "secret Mom." Let me tell "secret Mom" gives much better gifts than I give to my own "secret Mom." I here do apologize.
The chicken was light but had just enough flavor. It was tender and not over-whelming with seasonings. The risotto, however, was absolutely DELISH. Creamy, yummy, hammy and all good things as such. (it's a bad picture but I'm still learning how to use my new camera)
And now for tonight's dinner, which was the best of all.
Yumm, Yumm, Yumm.
If you are ever struggling to come up with dinner ideas...I strongly suggest you check out MaryEllen's Cooking Creations.
Lauren, Matt and I licked our bowls clean. Tyler not so much. He was told to eat just one bite (simply one bite) of soup and then he could have a snack later on. He opted not to eat the bite.
Of course when it was snack time he said "I just want to eat a bite of soup now." Unfortunately for him, we had to tell him that he had his chance but he made his choice back then. So then the "bad attitude" took over him. When I told Tyler that he couldn't have a snack...he had the nerve to say that, "Mommy needs to go sit on the naughty chair."
I think I'm humbled enough to now ask for some parenting suggestions. What do I do with the bad attitudes?

Monday, January 19, 2009

Weekend Update with Seth Meyers (not's just me, Christine)

is this not ridiculous?! I thought I moved to the tropics when I moved to Atlanta.
Despite the utterly cold weather we still took Lauren to school on Friday. Some schools in Georgia, however, CLOSED due to the cold weather. Yes, you heard that right. They CLOSED due to the cold ice...just cold weather. Check it out! Ha ha ha ha ha ha.
Friday afternoon, Lauren’s teacher walked her out to the car and asked me if there was anything out of the ordinary going on at home. She said that this week Lauren has been ultra-sensitive and she's acting as if it's the first week of school again. She gets frustrated and instead of asserting herself (when someone takes her play-dough) she just starts to cry. It took me 2 hours of gentle cajoling to get the play-dough crying incident out of her.

I can’t think of anything out of the ordinary. Maybe she’s still withdrawing from our family visiting and having Daddy home everyday for 2 weeks. Other than that I can’t think of anything. I do lock her in a dark closet while I go out clubbing during the day but that shouldn’t cause a change in behavior or anything. [wink]
Matt and I, combined, just make sensitive, caring and Super Smart human beings.
Here's my super smart girl cutting out some "V" words for her "V" homework. She's cutting out a Vacuum to go along with her Vegetables.

Not to be left out, Tyler insisted on doing some "homework" himself. He likes to make pictures "dirty" and in need of a "wash-down". (Thomas the Train lingo)

After finishing up with the black marker he forgot to put the cap on it. Lauren saw this and loudly shouted, (word for word) "Tyler, you’re Freaking Me Out....You need to put the caps on the markers." to me: "Tyler is really Freaking Me Out." Where does she get this?! Must be her Daddy!

On Saturday, I thought we were going out to eat in honor of Cranston's (Tera’s dad's) birthday but at the last minute we all decided to save some money by eating dinner at home and meeting up afterwards. Left without a menu plan I had to resort to CookThink. This is a fantastic website where you enter the foods you crave or have in your fridge and pantry and it will think of a recipe for you to make. That night we enjoyed a suggested Shrimp Risotto. Holy Yumm!

After dinner the kids enjoyed a naked snack (ice-cream) and then it was bath and jammies before Miss Morgan came over to baby-sit.

We started the night off at the Outback where we had a beer each and then it was off to the Irish Bred Pub for another beer and some appetizers and before the clock struck midnight we were talked into going all the way to Maguire's Pub in Senoia (pronounced Sen-OY by the locals.) See we live in a dry county and to all my friends and readers not living in the South you'll be surprised to know that we cannot buy liquor, beer or wine Anywhere on Sunday's in Georgia. So in select dry counties like mine and select cities like Peachtree City, when the clock strikes midnight on Sunday morning all alcohol sales cease...and for those dry counties and cities (like mine) you can't even buy alcohol at bars. So although I thoroughly enjoyed myself with the company and would have been happy to call it a night somehow we were talked into going down to Senoia (where the fierce prohibition laws do not apply.) I did have a good time but it was after one AM before we got home and I just don't do too well on a few hours of sleep anymore. Sunday was a tough day for both of us. We napped a lot and the kids watched a lot of TV and once again we vowed never to set foot in another night club...or any establishment after the 12 o-clock hour. We are just getting old.
The only thing I managed to do on Sunday was cook. I made up some Gumbo Z'Herbes which Matt strongly hinted that he didn't want to eat. So while I ate the yummy greens I made Matt and the kids frozen pizza. I also prepared a Pastichio for Monday. Matt had been watching the Food Network and saw a Greek Lasagna aka Pastichio made and requested that I make one of these. The Pastichio recipe suggested I make it a day ahead of time to let it set and also to let the flavors meld.

It was So So So So good but you could just tell that it was So So So So BAD FOR YOU. Just keep your portions small.
Tonight we worked on Lauren's "family homework." We were instructed to decorate a snowman as a family and send it back to school with Lauren on Wednesday. (she is off Monday for MLK, Jr. Day and also Tuesday for a teacher training day.)
It's coming along. Just a few more final touches to be added tomorrow.

While we focused on the Snowman homework, Tyler provided some fresh beats for us.

(do not send us a drum set...he's completely happy with a pot and stick!)

Please admire this picture which was requested by Lauren.
snack tonight was chocolate ice-cream and cheesy smiles

When Matt tucked Lauren into bed tonight he brought her a cup of water for her bedroom. A few days ago she and Tyler both spilled their water in their rooms and all over their carpets. I declared a new rule that they couldn't have water in their bedrooms. Since then Lauren has been getting up 2 to 3 times a night to get a drink. She opens her door, shuffles to the bathroom, fills her cup, takes a drink, shuffles back to her bedroom and shuts the door. Consistently, 2 to 3 Time a Night! Tonight, we decided to let her have a cup of water in her room again to save her the trek. So when Matt tucked her in tonight with a cup of water for her bedroom she asked him if it was okay to tell Mommy that he broke the rules. [what?!!...when did she learn to be mischievous?!] Matt told her that Mommy and him had decided that she could have a cup of water in her room again.
I'm going to have to work harder to keep my little innocent bubble around my kids.

Weekly Menu (Greek infused)

Sunday: Shrimp Risotto
Monday: Pastichio (I prepared this Sunday and will reheat today)
Tuesday: Low Fat Vegetable Soup & freezer biscuits
Wednesday: Chicken with Yogurt Sauce and Peasant Risotto
Thursday: Mushroom, Potato, and Smoked Gouda Chowder
Friday: Greek Roasted Pork Chops with Potatoes & salad & freezer biscuits
Saturday: Meatball Sandwiches
Sunday: left-overs

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Happy Birthday Brian aka Uncle Pickle Juice Head

My baby brother Brian turned 23 today. Since I'm still only 25 I don't know why I ever called him my baby brother. hmmm. I hope you have a great birthday Brian and just remember I was 24 years old when I got MARRIED!! ( pressure I guess...Matt was 28)

There isn't much to say about the past few days. (hard to believe since this goes on and on and on and on and anyway...) I was going to base it on pictures I've taken but for some reason I can't access the computer in the office (which has all of our pictures on it) from my laptop in the living room. Normally I can and Yes Matt, I Be-Booted and Still Can't.

Pictures or not (they were mostly food pics anyway) it's pretty much been middle of the week routine for us. Tuesday, I met with my "30 Days to a New You" group at Kate's house and sadly have only bad news to I won't. You'll have to wait 'til next week. While I was in my meeting Lauren and Tyler played upstairs in Annabelle's and Daniel's rooms. They had a blast and told me of all the toys "A" and "D" had. i.e. Rocket and all the Little Einsteins, Noah's Ark and even Jesus's House (which after talking to Kate we still don't know what they meant by that.)

Wednesday, Tyler played with his friends at playgroup while Lauren was at school. He sat on my lap for only about 5 min. before he found some new age Transformers to play with. These suckers are a lot more complex than the Transformers of my day.

And today I volunteered at church while Lauren was at school. Despite the fact that Tyler repeated over and over that "I just don't want to go there, okaaaaaaay?" all the way to the church, he ended up having a good time playing with his friends and eating snack after snack after snack. (note to self: donate more animal crackers for the pre-school ministry)

Maybe when I get this picture thing resolved I'll give my reviews of my delicious dinners from the past few days.

In the meantime perhaps I should make a confession. I should have been at my community group meeting tonight. The last one I went to was the Christmas Party and I don't want them to think that I only come for the gift exchanges. I had planned to go, I had the diaper bag all ready to go, I had the husband changed into his comfy community group clothes and I Had Thought I started dinner early enough to be finished in time to go. However, although I started my Tomato-Herb Rolls 2 hours before I planned to eat dinner they just took a bit longer on the second rise. We sat down to dinner 15 min. before CG was to start. I made the executive decision (well I am CEO of Everything) that it was more important to spend quality time as a family over dinner than to rush and make it to CG. At dinner we did rejoice and give thanks that the entire flight crew and all passengers survived the plane crash on the Hudson River today.

A note on that. The news about the plane crash cut into General Hospital today and while it was on Lauren woke up from her nap and came down to sit on my lap. She saw the footage and asked me why the plane was in the water. I quickly turned the TV off and told her I didn't know yet. I'm just not ready to talk about real world issues with her. I want to keep her in my own little bubble.

And in my bubble my kids say things like this:

Tyler: Look Mommy, my littlest pet shop is playing the gi-TON. (guitar)
Lauren: No, Tyler it's not a gi-TON it's a ka-TAR (guitar)
Tyler: Ok, I'm just going to play the bang-booms now.
Me to Lauren: Bang Booms?
Lauren to Me: He means the drums.

Me to myself just now: I Love my little bubble.

Monday, January 12, 2009

sorry, not much for y'all today

not much but a lot of words that is........

Today was almost a "not quite so typical Monday." I woke up with a start at 7:45 am. Normally I'm up at 7:00 on weekdays. I don't know what happened. We quickly got dressed, ate breakfast (Panda Cereal aka Crispix) and stormed off to drop Lauren off at school by 9am.

Other than that it was a completely normal day. Lauren went to school. We picked her up. We had lunch. The kids took a nap/enjoyed quiet time. I worked out in the basement. I showered and watched my show (General Hospital, duh!) The kids woke up and Lauren came downstairs when she woke up. Tyler, as usual, woke up but waited in his bed until I went upstairs and opened his door to tell him he could come downstairs.

While I made dinner and listened to Dr. Laura, Lauren played with the Air Cargo Airplane.
(Yes, I'm hurting for pictures/ with it.)
ready for the intial bake
topped with pepperjack, green onions and cilantro, all ready for the second bake

Here is my plate of Black Bean and Carrot Burritos with Cilantro and some carrot sticks and some stark white Granny Smith apple slices. (I'm blind, I'm blind.)

Dinner was delish-us. I especially enjoyed the cripsy flour tortillas which I imagine became crispy from the 2nd oven bake. Make this Y'ALL!

I've recently re-connected with an old friend from out West and come to find out she only lives 2 hours away from me!! Small World! In an e-mail she mentioned a desired trip to IKEA in Atlanta to stock up on playroom furniture for her 21-month-old son. Since I love IKEA and they (as of yet) do not pay me to endorse them (but there's always hope right?!) I thought I would provide some pictures of all the playroom furniture we've bought from them.
(is that not enough publicity for some freebies? c'mon folks)

Anyway, we turned our formal dining room into a child's paradise. (All of my family, as well as all of Matt's family live out West so we have no need for a formal dining room to entertain them all. We turned our dining room into a playroom that children can only dream about. In the playroom, one side of the wall is decorated with some framed posters, framed artwork and two IKEA book shelves stood upright and holding our million or so children's books.

Another whole wall is dedicated to 2 IKEA stair step storage chests. You would be surprised at how quickly all of these baskets fill up with TOYS!!!!!
And here is the other view of the room. Now we're looking out the front window. But IKEA wise, pay attention to the white and red rug that lays beneath the beaten up train table. That would be IKEA too.

My name is Christine and I have an IKEA addiction.

While I was Photo-Documenting our IKEA expenditures, the kids finally realized the genius behind Horton Hears A Who. They've watched this movie before but after 5 minutes it normally fails to maintain their attention. But today we've reached a new milestone. They both were zombied out in front of the basement TV for the entire movie.

I'm about to go catch up on all my Tivo shows alone since Matt was convinced to go play poker tonight at the neighbor's house. One of my shows is Saturday Night Live. I hope y'all have already seen the digital short of Neil Patrick Harris performing the piano concert. It's least according to my own warped sense of humor. =) I Loved Doogie Howser.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Family Sunday

Today was perfect. We spent all day together (except for the 30 minutes I took to run ((honestly, I drove but "run" just sounds much healthier)) to Publix to buy some more Cilantro for tonight's dinner.)

We were able to learn some more "Lauren-isms" today. (These are comparable to "Gump-isms" i.e. "life is like a box of chocolates....")

At breakfast this morning we ran out of clean Ikea kiddie forks so I gave Lauren one of our Oneida forks.

“Bust my boiler, I have a grown-up fork.” Obviously this was taken from a Thomas and Friends episode. Although she said it in all honesty I just couldn't help but crack up. It was hilarious to hear it naturally come out of her mouth.

And anytime she gets frustrated she will lament, "Oh Bother." (if you know anything about anything, you will know this comes from one of Lauren's favorite shows, "My Friends Tigger and Pooh.")

Later in the day Lauren and Tyler prepared a birthday party with their pretend food. Lauren told me the 3 people she likes best were going to be there. Her favorite three people, "God, Jesus and Santa Claus" Bless her heart. (but what about me?!)

While the kiddos were down for their nap Matt and I watched the documentary "Encounters at the End of the Earth" It was good, deep...maybe a little too deep for me...I have no idea how to process Neutrinos without letting my brain explode....but it was an interesting documentary. I still recommend you watch it.

And to wind up the day:

Lauren did some reading of her "sight words." She sorted through all of them and picked out the ones she knew. She correctly read the words "BIG" and "GO." I had to get her picture celebrating her big accomplishment.

For dinner tonight we had the Black Bean Soup and Freezer Biscuits (as mentioned in the Weekly Menu.) Both were very good. I did add a good amount of salt & pepper to both the Sofrito (a.k.a. Garlic Pepper Sauce) and the Black Bean Soup. I added a dollop of plain yogurt to mine, as did Lauren and we both cleaned our plates. Tyler was a different story. He preferred to only eat his raisins and milk.

After dinner I did some vacuuming and then tried to make a dent in my iTunes education (so I can better use my iPod Touch.) In the mean time Tyler did some measuring of Lauren...some serious measuring....

and then he played some powder puff? football.
(disregard my fat finger getting in the way of the lens)

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Weekly Menu

Sunday: Black Bean Soup & Biskits (instead of the canned black beans I'll be using dried black beans for this meal and the next.) (and for the biskits, DO NOT use shortening...replace with an equal amount of BUTTER...your taste buds will thank you.)
Monday: Black Bean and Carrot Burritos with Cilantro
Tuesday: Pan Grilled Pork Kebabs & Rice
Wednesday: Chicken & Rice Soup and Biskits (see note about shortening above!)
Thursday: left-overs
Friday: Salmon with Escarole and Lemon
Saturday: Gumbo Z'Herbes (a recipe from my Everyday Food Jan/Feb 2009 cookbook. I can't find it published on the web anywhere but if you really want the recipe e-mail me and I'll manually hook you up.)
Sunday: left-overs

a bunch of randoms

Has anyone seen my little angel depicted below?!

She's been abducted and replaced with a body double who goes by the name BAD ATTITUDE!

She's on the "naughty chair" again because of: talking back, yelling at Mommy and/or Daddy, throwing things, just being a brat. (take your pick)

Hopefully this is just a phase and the naughty chair will tame her wild rebellious side. She must get this from her father because I was absolutely perfect growing up. Right Mom?!!! (there is a right answer!)

While Lauren was at school yesterday Tyler and I hung out at home. I had a bunch of cleaning to do and he had a bunch of "playing with Lauren's toys to do."

Real Boys Play with Littlest Pet Shop
(with a race car parked out front)
"smile Tyler"

and now, let's talk about Chloe...
since we're a little short on cash and trying to cut back on our spending, Matt decided to buy Chloe some generic Kroger brand cat food that cost about 50 cents for a 25 pound bag (give or take.)

here's her bowl after 3 days (she has not eaten one bite.)

finally I broke down and gave the poor cat some seasoning

as you can see she dove right in

but apparently all she did was lick the yummy tuna fish juice off of the nasty cat food
Before you report me to DFACS "Cat Style" be assured that today we picked her up some cheap a** Fancy Feast which she gobbled up like crack.
Yesterday I made some pita bread with the bread machine to compare to the hand-made pitas I've been making. I'm slightly disappointed to say that the bread machine pitas turned out much better than my hand-made ones which I kneaded for no less than 20 minutes straight...and broke out a sweat over. Here are the recipes if you want to try them out for yourselves.

Hey! I never claimed to be a master circle-loaf-roller-out-er!
Today we were busy doing family and home stuff. Matt, as usual, made us our weekend breakfast and then I worked out in the basement while he watched boring car and truck tv shows. (He knows to watch these shows as soon as possible because if given the chance I will delete these off of TIVO simply to give more space to record Nancy Grace and other shows he despises.)
Later in the day we by-passed the kids' naps and did a bunch of shopping. Target, for a grill pan/panini press & cheap a** cat food (as mentioned before,) Dillards, for some new running shoes for me since I ran a hole through my old pair, Walgreens, for some coupon shopping/savings and finally Kroger, for the week's groceries.
Dinner tonight was awesome. Straight up home cookin' awesome. How can you go wrong with meatloaf, buttermilk mashed potatoes and green beans. You should all try this recipe from my Everday Food magazine.
The meatloaf was topped with Williamson Bros. Bar-B-Q Sauce and I recommend y'all go buy yo'self some o' this cuz it's delish.

and finally here's a picture of Matt being a Brat (sort of like his daughter.)
I asked if I could take a picture of him eating his dinner since he obviously was enjoying it proven by the ooohs and ahhhs and grunts in between bites. He told me that it would look "stupid."
and with that I give you my DH Matt.