Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Weekly Menu 8/26/2013

Monday:  Tom Kha Gai soup and left-overs
Tuesday:  Skinny Beef and Bean Enchilada Casserole and Roasted Chile Lime Cauliflower  (Kids and Hubby loved everything...especially the Cauliflower!!  Seriously, try this.)
Wednesday:  BLT Corn Salad Wraps (minus the avocado), baked-from-frozen taquitos, & tomato soup  (The BLT Corn Salad Wraps were a hit with Lauren and myself!  YUMM.)
Thursday:  left-overs or pantry meal (T has boyscouts and L has softball practice. Matt has a football draft.)
Friday:  Loafstyles of the Rich & Famous, frozen veggies & bread
Saturday:  Matt's second football draft.  Kids will eat the left-over pizza and sub sandwiches from the draft, I will make myself Skinny Panda Express Egg Rolls.
Sunday:  Shepherdopoulos Pie

!Buen Prevecho!

Minecraft Maniacs (still)

Once a week during the school year, I go to lunch with a group of girlfriends.
Today was the Olive Garden.

I had the unlimited Soup and Salad special.
Minestrone Soup (2pts) and 3 servings of Salad w/ balsamic vinegar (total of 5 points.)

At lunch one of my friends mentioned that her kids were currently obsessed with Youtube videos of MINECRAFT.
I jokingly asked her, "What's Minecraft?"
She told me all about it.
I guess I haven't told her about L and T's Minecraft addiction.

Said addiction is still going strong.
Yesterday they made their own screen-savers on their computers.
Apparently, on one screen-saver setting you can type in any word you want and it will float around the screen while the computer is resting.

Lauren chose MINECRAFT

Tyler chose CREEPER AAAAA!!!!!
(please notice the minecraft papercraft in the corner)

As you know L and T get 3, 20-minute screen-times per day.

Most are spent back and forth like this.
This happens to be Tyler's screen time but he's nice enough to let Lauren watch.

My friend at lunch mentioned that a number of Minecraft videos on Youtube have inappropriate language for children our children's age.  So for her benefit and also for all you other closet Minecraft addicts I thought I'd link to a couple of cuss-word free, child-friendly YouTube Minecraft videos.

If you know of any others please let me Minecraft Maniacs would greatly appreciate it.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Tuesday Totals

number of pounds lost this week:  3.8
two week total:  6.6
(Woo Hoo!  I need to keep it up and continue to count every point I eat.)

 number of boxes of Smorz cereal we received today:  6
Lauren has been requesting this cereal and I have not found it at Publix so I went to Amazon and ordered in bulk.  It helps that I have Amazon Prime.  (free 2 day shipping)
Gosh...remember when I used to feed my kids healthy breakfasts?

rank in AWESOMENESS of Lauren and Tyler's bus driver: 1 
Today Ms. Linda sent me this big old bundle of peppers from her garden.
This is the second installment she's given me.
I love the peppers and I love her sweet soul.
I have no doubt that we have the best Bus Driver EVER!

Today was a good day!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Someone Just Got Her Ears Pierced!

Lauren woke up Saturday morning and said, "I want to pierce my ears."
I have no qualms with pierced ears so when she declared her wish I was happy to oblige.

We headed to the nearest CLAIR'S to hear what the responsibilities would be and for Lauren to make her final decision.

Lauren was told she would have to clean and rotate the piercings three times a day for the next six weeks and then continuously wear earrings everyday for the next 6 months. 
She said "OKAY."

So let the sizing begin.
While Lauren held the teddy bear the head piercer (Miss Melissa) marked in pen where the earrings would go.

Making sure they looked even.
(She did a great job!)

Miss Melissa had a co-worker hold the 2nd gun so Lauren could have both ears pierced at the same time.
Ready, Set, ka-BOOM!

AND....They're pierced!
(She wasn't ready to smile yet.)
 She said it hurt more than I told her it would.
(I told her it would hurt as much as a shot.  She said, "it hurt for 10 minutes and way more than a shot.")
So now we know.  =)

 She chose her birthstone (Aquamarine) for her first earrings.

They look great and really sparkle in the sun.
I'm proud of my sweet girl.  She wanted something, learned about it, and then she followed through.  Way to go Lauren.

So... I'm sure we could look at Lauren's new earrings all day long but let's instead end this post with a pic of Romy relaxing.
Totally chill-axing.
Let it all hang out sweet boy.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Poor Romy: Part One

Poor Romy
(Unbeknownst to him this is only Part One.)

Yesterday I took Romy to the Vet for his 3-month-old vaccinations.

He had his blood drawn for tests, his temperature taken (rectally,) all of his nails trimmed and to top it off 3 different vaccinations/shots.
He did not enjoy any of it and I've never heard him hiss like that before.

While we were there it was determined that he is not 3-months-old like I thought but closer to 6-months-old.
This means he will be back at the Vet's office in 3 weeks for his boosters and also 
We don't need any baby Romy's around this house.
(stay tuned for Poor Romy: Part Two)

The Vet. Dr. warned me that he would be tired and not himself for 24 hours.

As expected, Romy spent the rest of the day tucked behind the sofa in the family room.

When he did venture out he went straight for his Pillow Pet.
Remember this video?  He's still attached to it.

Today he was feeling a lot better.
He finally started eating his food again and he tried his best to sprint outside whenever a door was opened.
(we don't let him go outside yet)

He's still slightly out of sorts because he tolerates Chloe being in the same room with him.
(Chloe is on the bed and Romy is at the window.)

Normally he would be trying to play with her or just attack her because there's nothing else to do.

Enjoy these next couple of weeks Romy.

PS.  I'm still looking for more suggestions regarding my post from yesterday.  Send me an e-mail, facebook message, or a comment if you have any advice....any advice at all.  Thanks!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Mama Bear

My sweet little bear cub. (2010)
how cute is he?!

Sometimes this sweet boy gets stuck on a word or two when he talks.
I don't want to say he stutters...but sometimes he does.

Matt and I have not said anything to him about it, we just listen and keep eye contact until he finishes his sentence.  He has no reservations about talking at home even though it frustrates him at times when he gets stuck on a word.

I assumed it was the same at school since he has never said anything otherwise.

Until Today

He was telling me about a friend he saw while we were signing him up for Cub Scouts today.

Tyler:  "Momma, that's my friend Jake.  Sometimes he talks funny."
Me:  "It's not nice to say that people talk funny.  Some people can't pronounce their "R"s very well like Lauren and some people get stuck on their words sometimes."
Tyler: "No I just mean that he says funny things.  But some people make fun of me when I talk.  When I say 'the...the...the' when I talk.  Like the older boys on the bus."

My heart dropped a little bit.
I wanted his "getting stuck" to only be something I noticed but apparently it's not.
Now I'm not sure what to do.
He's not bothered by it as far as I can tell and today was the only day he's ever mentioned being teased but he did say people make fun of him.

What's a Mama Bear to do?
I don't want to pull him out of class for Speech but I also don't want to pretend that nothing is going on.

Any ideas for this Mama Bear?

 How cute is this kid?!
And his older sister too!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Weekly Menu 8/20/2013

Our 12 year anniversary is coming up next week so had to share this blast from the past.
How cute are we!?!!
August 26, 2001

Love you Babe!

So anyway...
In keeping up the momentum to lose 10 more pounds in 7 more weeks I thought I'd post my healthy recipes for the week.

I used the fun Crazy Plates cookbook my Mom gave me for most of these recipes.  Thanks Mom/Grammy!!

Monday:  The Thigh Who Loved Me (6pts,) & frozen veggies  --Super Yummy!
Tuesday:  Cabbage Patch Soup(5pts) & l/o chicken & Ritz Crackers --Matt called this soup Bad A**!
Wednesday:  Croque Monsieur Egg Rolls (2pts each) and l/o soup  (I had left over egg roll wrappers so needed to find a recipe to use them up.)  --These were a family wide hit.
Thursday:  Tubes and Cubes (12 pts) & green salad (I will probably eat 1/2 serving of pasta and double serving of salad.)
Friday:  On Golden Prawns (10 pts)  (I will serve this over rice for my family but over salad greens for myself.)
Saturday:  Matt wrote "DATE NIGHT" on the calendar so I'm not going to argue.  Kids and baby-sitter will most likely get PIZZA.
Sunday:  For Goodness Steak (6pts) (Scroll down for the recipe) & veggies & couscous

If you need some fun and fantastic cookbooks definitely check out Crazy Plates and also their other cookbook which I have, LooneySpoons.  They are the sum of healthy and delicious...and pretty cheap on Amazon.

Who's got the doldrums?

Who's got the doldrums?
This blogger, that's who.

It's been a dreary summer.  Damp, dark and drizzly.
I think I want to move to Seattle for their weather.  I hear they didn't have any rain the entire month of July!

Meanwhile in the reputed hot sticky south we've been slogging through days that look like this:
not hot nor sticky...just soggy

Life must go on despite the rain and during summer one must eat off the grill a couple of times.
Luckily, we have a rain proof roof over the grill..
We had it installed for next to nothing.

See, it keeps the hot coals from getting wet.

The traeger too.

The weather is lousy but the ribs sure weren't.

Neither were the pork chops and bacon-wrapped asparagus.

A little bit of sunshine for the tummy on a cloudy day.

Not only has the weather made me grumpy and lazy (hence the lack of blogging) it also makes my blood pressure high.

Well maybe that isn't due to the weather but it's high.
I went to the Doctor and it was 150/90.
I think that's pretty high because she immediately asked if I had chest pains.
It's high at the Doctor because while they take my pressure I freak out inside my head.
I have total Doctor office anxiety.
(I've fainted at the Eye Dr. and Dentist before.)
I took it again at home and it was 120/80.
They won't take my word for it and want to do some blood work in two months to see if they can find out what's causing it.

So I decided to take these two months to get to a healthy weight and see if that makes a difference.  I'm about 12 pounds over the max healthy weight for my height so I'd like to lose at least that in the next two months.

Last week I went back to Weight Watchers (instead of just paying for it) and lost 2.8 pounds when I weighed in yesterday.
(go me!)

I did it by keeping track honestly of everything that goes in my pie hole and staying within my weekly points.

I also switched my 6 pt. Kashi GoLean Crisp breakfast to a 3 pt. egg burrito with sauteed veggies (here with mushrooms and banana peppers) and a serving of sauteed (in chicken broth) kale on the side.
Way more filling than my 3/4c of cereal.

Just slice the egg, add some greek yogurt & hot sauce, and throw it all on a 1 pt. tortilla.

I've also drastically lowered my caffeine intake and given up my favorite high sodium snack.
Pretzels dipped in mustard...lots of mustard.

But enough of me and my ho hums and doldrums

Matt's doing rad.  He found a new password keeper and he's super stoked about that.
He's also super excited that our 12th anniversary is coming up on Monday.

And the kids are great.
They are all adjusted to the new school year and are doing their homework as I type.

Lauren is a reading fanatic.  In the two weeks since school's started she already has 43 Accelerated Reader points.
In between her books she brings home from school she's started reading my old Sweet Valley Twins books.

Tyler is getting to be a reading machine as well.  Something clicked over the summer and the boy can read. Last year I was pulling my own teeth out trying to get him to sound out words.
Me, "Sound it out. D-O-G"
Tyler, "Duh-Aw-Uga"
Me, "Blend it together."
Tyler, "Duhhhh-Awwwww-UUUga.  I don't know. I can't do it."
Me, "Aaagggghhhhh" while pulling my tooth out.

He's also decided that he prefers to wear his socks inside-out because he wants the smooth side against his skin.  Who wouldn't?!
I'm positive the boy is a genius.

So all in all, despite the dreary weather and my blood pressure worries, my fantastic family keeps me bright.  
Doldrums Schmoldrums

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Simply Sunday

It was Simply Sunday today.

We woke up and went to church.
When the kids came home from Camp Winshape we decided to make it a priority to go to church again on Sundays.
Every week since, I've heard something that really spoke to me.
It's good to be back at Southside listening to Andy Stanley.

After church we grabbed Tera and headed to the pool for some Simple Poolside Fun.

Now, I have a couple of "Claim to Fames" that I bring up while breaking the ice with people or trying to prove that I am indeed cool.
For example, I went to high-school with a playboy playmate of the year.
(and I'm pretty sure she thought I was prettier...assuming she knew who I was being a couple years younger than her.)

My brand new Claim to Fame is that a grand-prize sole Survivor (from the reality show) is in this picture I took of the kids today at the pool.
I'm not going to say his name because I don't want anyone searching for him to come upon my blog. 
Hello, Internet Privacy.
(If you want to know who it is e-mail me.)

 Back home we showered up and made a Simple Dinner.

Lauren made our dinner tonight.
Chicken Nuggets and Steamed Broccoli.

I got this natural smile from her by yelling out "cheesy butt farts."
I'm so not proud of myself.

I'm trying something different for our dinners this week and maybe the next.
My pantry is F-U-L-L so I'm taking on a self-imposed Full Pantry Challenge.
I'm going to pick two or more items from the pantry/fridge each day and come up with a recipe to use them in the evening's dinner.

Tomorrow I'm going to use a couple of these dried Ancho chilis I've had forever, pair them with Linguine from the pantry and frozen shrimp from the freezer to make Ancho Chile, Shrimp and Pasta.

It should be Simply Delicious.
I hope you all had a Simply fun Sunday like we did.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Big Helpers

As much as I don't want my babies to grow up there are some perks involved.

They can now gather the trash from the house (Lauren) and bring the recycle and trash bins down to the street (Tyler.)

He's such a big helper he insists on doing it BY HIMSELF.

That's my little man!

After school Tyler asked me if I wanted to see a funny video his teacher played for the class.  I said, "of course," and he then went on YouTube and found the video himself.  He got such a kick out of it I had to share.

I don't want to leave Lauren out so I thought I'd share the video she chose to watch for her screen time this afternoon.  It's an episode of The Barbie Happy Family Show.  Midge and Allen's Wedding.  (Her favorite part happens around the minute mark, 7:40.)

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

First Day of School

Today was the first day of school.
(I'm not sure if I'll ever get used to starting school the first week of August but at least we get plenty of breaks during the school year.)

So far Lauren likes her teacher.  Her teacher, who I play bunco with, had to miss part of the first day to settle her own daughter into a college dorm.
Lauren is excited and thinks she's going to learn a lot from her teacher.  ...And I plan on throwing every Bunco game to her teacher to ensure some straight A's.
(just kidding, Lauren does not need my help academically)

Tyler got the same teacher that Lauren had for 2nd grade and I am thrilled.  I was so impressed with Mrs. B that I wrote a letter to the principal after Lauren's 2nd grade year saying how thrilled I was.  In the letter I added a sentence saying, "I know I'm not supposed to ask but if there's any way I would love for my son to have Mrs. B when he gets into second grade."
And looky loo he did!
He's going to have a great year.

Boarding the bus at 6:55am
(the angelic glow is from the not-needed flash on my camera) 

While they were at school I went to the gym and then pretty much waited by the door until they got home.  I missed my kiddos.

Finally, they made it back home.

discussing their day
 They both had a great day.
Tyler was excited to do his homework (read his weekly story) and Lauren was excited that she didn't have any homework.  They both said school was fun and actually went into detail telling me about it.  (i.e. what playground they played on, how tasty lunch was, who were the good kids/trouble makers in their classes...etc. etc.)

After homework was done Tyler invited the neighbors to come over to play.
They caught me with the camera while playing on the trampoline.

For dinner I made Lauren's favorite meal.
Chicken Drumsticks, Asparagus, and Grapes.

Welcome Back to School 2013!