Monday, March 28, 2011

April Challenge

Click the Link and check it out! I'll be doing this during April.

http://peak313.com/featured/the-try-it-challenge-intro-and-vlog/


Something is wrong with her button...this is the link FIXED

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Dinner Tonight: Fish Tacos

Tonight I went for a more elaborate dinner than usual ( by elaborate I mean several elements) and did Fish Tacos!


Elements:
Corn Tortilla
Veggie "medley"
Homemade Creole Mayonnaise
Red Rice
Fried Tilapia Strips


Recipes:
Corn Tortilla - Simple enough. I did sear them in a small pan with coconut oil (they had a funky texture otherwise).
Veggie "medley" - I chopped onion and yellow bell pepper and sauteed it in a pan until it was firm, but no longer crunchy. I then added frozen corn and cooked until the corn was hot. I added a few dashes of salt, pepper, garlic powder, and chili powder.
Homemade Creole Mayonnaise - Slightly adapted from Sally Fallon's Nourishing Traditions
 2 egg yolks at room temp
2 tblsp lemon juice
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp paprika
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
2/3 c extra virgin olive oil
Place all ingredients except olive oil into blender and blend thoroughly. Add olive oil slowly while constantly blending. Check for seasonings. You may want to add more lemon juice or salt. It will keep about 2 weeks in the fridge.
Red Rice - Cooked sort of per instructions (I messed up and did it covered like white rice...it turned out okay in the end)
Fried Tilapia Strips - I put them in a store bought spicy fish fry and let it sit for a few minutes (long enough for the oil to heat up) and then dredged them in egg/milk and flour with salt and garlic powder. I fried them in coconut oil until cooked through.

To Assemble:
Corn Tortilla
Spread Mayo
Spoon on some Veggies
Spoon on Rice
Lay Tilapia
You can add more Mayo if you want.

A few informative links:
Coconut Oil
Red Rice


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

My Boys Are So Loved

I know that this post might touch a nerve with some people...but I need to post this so I kind of don't care...

Divorce is ugly. No matter the reasons for it or if it's "mutual" it's always ugly. There are always "casualties" and it's usually the children and, eventually, grandchildren. There's usually resentment and hurt feelings and that can bleed into future relationships.

I'm a child of divorced parents. It sucked then and it sucks now. I'm a child of parents (ALL of my parents) with deep hurts from the past that did bleed over into our relationship, and left me with a few deep hurts of my own. I'm determined to break the cycle and not let it affect my relationships! By the grace of God I will have healthy relationships.

That being said, my boys are loved by all of their family members. Great-Grandparents and Grandparents alike. These little boys are showered in so much love whenever family is around! I do consider them truly blessed. So what if those people can't get along? As long as, in the end, the boys feel loved it doesn't matter.

So, I'm sharing photos of my boys with family members for this post. I'm not going to label the photos. I'm not going to mention names anywhere in the post. All my readers need to know is that my sons are loved. Because that's all that matters to me.












Sorry about the quality. I took a photo of a photo because I no longer have a scanner.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Vacation Thoughts

We were on vacation all this past week! I didn't announce it because I've heard stories about people announcing vacations on their blogs and then getting robbed...I'm sure you're all nice people and everything, but I'd rather be safe.

We went to Arizona to let the boys visit their great grandparents. It was fun. I have lots of photos to put up. (Don't worry, rest of the family, your visit is coming. This one was a HUGE trip so we had to plan it out way in advance.)

I had some thoughts while on vacation I wanted to share:

  • It's interesting to drive next to the boarder (between the US and Mexico) and see the vast difference in living on either side.
  • While I was irritated at having to slow down for Boarder Patrol to check cars (the baby started screaming when the car stopped moving) I am glad that they're checking cars...
  • At night, when you're exhausted, walking into the hotel without shoes is a fine idea. However, walking OUT with no shoes the next day feels like a walk of shame.
  • Every mall should have a kids play area. Even just a little one.
  • Now I want a dog.
  • You know you're in the middle of NOWHERE when you push "seek" on the radio and it just keeps spinning...
  • I need to stock and carry a first aid kid...
  • Now I know why parents give kids Nyquil before long trips.
  • If you're driving in West Texas and come to a gas station you should stop and get gas...even if  you "think you can make it." We were down to a gallon before we found somewhere to stop. Some families weren't as lucky.

Comment Love Day

A simple link up!


Thursday, March 17, 2011

Raw Chocolate Milk

Another Link Up!




I'm sharing my husband's recipe for RAW chocolate milk.

- 2c raw milk
- 2Tblsp raw cacao powder
- large dollop of raw honey
- 1 egg (raw lol)
- 1 banana
- dash each: ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt

Run through a blender until smooth.

You get LOTS of protein with this (milk, egg, cacao powder) as well as healthy sugars (honey!). The milk and egg also supply good fats. Stefan does this first thing in the morning and it keeps him full until lunch. It's an awesome "on the go" breakfast.

Head on over to For The Love Of Blogs (click the button above) and share a drink recipe!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Full of Fail

I'm linking up today!



So this week I've been full of fail as far as my diet is concerned. I'm back on sugar and been eating a LOT of junk food! I also haven't exercised much...FAIL.

I will say that I have future blogs planned for my sugar fiasco. There's no coincidence that my scalp is irritated and Jonathan and I have thrush since I've gone back on processed sugar. ugh. It's horrible. I also swear I've put on 10lbs this week. I'm all bloated.

Something I did do: I bought some of those Trim Step Fitness Shoes from Target. I didn't buy them because they make exercise easy! Honestly, I have really high arches so it's tough to find shoes that support my feet properly. I end up having to put inserts in every pair of shoes...except these! They have arch support. I've worn them several days now (and done plenty of walking) and I can feel that they actually work. I've always been skeptical but I'm sold. I wake up each day with my butt and legs a bit sore from the day before. Bonus: They're on sale at Target right now!

Starting next week I'm back off of processed sugar (just honey, stevia, and maple syrup here!) and I'm going to make it a point to do SOMETHING every day. Hopefully I'll be able to do yoga and something else (an ab workout for example). I also try to play with my toddler when the baby naps and it's usually something active like dancing. A friend asked if I do anything for strength: I don't do anything official. However, I have a baby (almost 15lbs) and a toddler (almost 30lbs) and I hold them frequently so I think that counts for something!

Mostly, I could care less about numbers (I'm an eating disorder survivor so I don't ever really know what the numbers are...) I mostly want to be in better shape! I'd like to eventually take up jogging (when Jonathan gets old enough to leave with Daddy!)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

What's in store?

Blogs my brain is working on:

- Profanity (this one should be interesting)
- My son turning 2
- Being a mom of two small kids
- Being a wife
- Recipes and cooking thoughts
- More Link-Ups

Friday, March 11, 2011

Getting Fit Link Up

I'm participating in the  Fitness Friday/Fab Friends Friday link up going on at For The Love Of Blogs! Today we're sharing our fitness plans and goals.

Right now breastfeeding is burning a ton of my calories. However, burning calories alone doesn't help with, well, anything fitness related...all it does is facilitate weight loss. I can't lose more than a pound a week or I'll hurt my supply AND I rarely get more than 20mins by myself during the day so my exercise plans are sort of limited.

There's an app that I need to re-download for my phone that's a short Abdominal Workout. It's a 5 minute (I think) series of non stop ab exercises designed to target your entire abdominal area. (Because crunches alone isn't enough. There are a lot of different muscles in that area!)

I also searched for "yoga" on Hulu and there's an entire channel devoted to it. Each video is a different length and there are varying levels of exercise. The other day I did 20 of Yoga Basics. Yoga is awesome because it's a full body sort of thing. It's not just about stretching! It also tones your muscles! (Don't believe me? Try the video I did by clinking on the link.) If you don't have Hulu access you can search in YouTube and find short exercises.


My goal is to do SOMETHING every day. Even if that's just dance around with my toddler for 10 minutes. I'd like to do abs a few times a week (that's the area most affected after my pregnancy) and yoga daily...but there isn't always time.

Care to share some of your fitness goals? It's not too late to get a start on doing something extra this Lent!






Thursday, March 10, 2011

Blog Hop



Click the button and explore some blogs!

Long overwhelming post

At least it's clean

I'm lacking sleep. Yesterday morning Jonathan decided that 6:30am (when Daddy wakes up) was the official start to the morning. I laid in bed with him, in blatant denial, for about 30 minutes before finally getting up. Last night I was up late cleaning up the house (it had to get done). I didn't crawl into bed until 11pm. Add in my insomnia and it was probably at least 30 minutes before I went to sleep. I was awake 5 or 6 times between then and 6:30am when Stefan got up. Even when I *could* sleep I was dreaming that I couldn't sleep...so I didn't get rested. I dozed until about 8am when Franklin woke up....and I don't have any caffeine in the house! I'm exhausted.

The kitchen isn't CLEAN. It's picked up, half of the dishes are done and all major messes are cleaned up. But there's still STUFF out and junk all over my floors. The living room is fairly clean (I need to spot treat) because I found MORE ANTS last night. (They were hugging the walls all the way from the front door to the dining room...basically an entire side of the house) I sprayed them and vacuumed. We aren't messy people!

If you're one of my readers in a place without fire ants you can't fully understand what I'm dealing with. Not only are these things relentless and annoying, but they STING. It isn't just a random sting either. They will swarm you and then the "leader" will release a chemical compound that tells them all to start stinging at once. Yeah, I'm serious. Did I mention that I'm slightly allergic to them? When Stefan gets stung he has slight discomfort and the typical red area. When *I* get stung it's like being injected with hot sauce and then the entire area swells up. If I get stung on my finger the entire finger will swell up into my hand...within minutes. It's crazy.

80% of my laundry is clean and 25% of *that* is folded....but none is put away. That annoys me. When we were first married we would do all of our laundry at once (laundromat) and then live out of the bin. Now that I have the space and my own washer and dryer you'd think that would change...but nope. We both hate laundry. So it gets put off until we have no clean clothes and then it takes an entire night to get it all folded.

I also get overwhelmed with my spirited son. I've tried giving him plenty of outside time (I even walked up to the park last week...that's 1/2 a mile up a steep hill...pushing him in the stroller and wearing Jonathan) I've tried playing actively inside (we danced a bunch together yesterday) I've tried fighting for naps (and it's a literal FIGHT) I've tried the laid back "whatever" attitude about naps (If he takes one, cool...if not, his loss) I've tried spanking. I've tried time out. I've tried explaining. I've tried diversion. I've tried ignoring. None of it works. Deep down inside I'm afraid he's ADHD or something. This can't all be because he's a spirited toddler. I question my ability to parent.


Plus I'm breastfeeding a newborn. I heard once that full time breastfeeding burns 300-500 calories a day (depending on how often "full time" is for you) Basically, someone 140lbs would have to do high impact aerobics for an hour a day to burn what I do by nursing....AND I'm chasing a toddler. My body is tired. I need to eat all the time. I go through a jar a peanut butter every few days. (High fat and protein) I don't have time to cook (toddler won't let me even if baby is sleeping) I've had to accept that the baby has to cry sometimes in order for me to eat enough to make milk...it's gotten to where I don't really respond to the crying as quickly as I think I should because I'm so used to hearing it.

I'll stop before I start rambling (and the baby is waking back up)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

How I Ended Up At Home

I was going to be the first woman president of the United States....and then I turned 5!

I was going to be a famous actress and model...but I gave myself until 16 for that (10 years was long enough to get a career going)

There was a period where I didn't care about life at all.

Then, I turned 16 and was still plain old me. That was depressing.

I considered being a CSI...but when I researched the job I realized it's a lot more boring than the show.

I thought about being a teacher...but I can't stand when kids are in class "just because" and don't want to learn.

I settled on an ER Doctor. I looked at where my life was going (and the man I had settled on) and decided I could have my career and then have kids in my mid-30s. ExBoyfriend said he didn't want to wait until his 30s to have kids...so I looked at my life again and decided I'd rather have a career than have children. It hurt a little bit, but I was unhappy with my own experiences as a child and unhappy with my relationship.

I went to a private junior college to get the theatre bug out of my system and get some core classes. MY plan was to go there for 2 years (I had a full ride) and then go to ExBoyfriend's college and go Pre-Med.

.........


And then God happened.


It's funny how that happens. You're going along in life thinking that YOU have everything planned out and you can almost hear the chuckle from the heavens as God steps in and says, "Watch what *I* can do with your life. You have no idea what you're doing."

At least, that's how it felt.

Through serendipity I met my husband. (Okay, it was easier than that. I knew his roommate from many years prior) Stefan and I ended up talking many nights and I found myself pouring my heart out to this man I barely knew. In hindsight it was an effort to scare him off...thank God it didn't work!

Through our talks I found the strength to leave my abusive and toxic relationship for good. I found the strength to step up and say "I don't know what I want to do with my life...and that's okay." I found the strength to try to figure out who I really was and stop hiding behind my eating disorder, self harm addiction, and promiscuous attitude. Most of all, I found the strength to realize how WEAK I was without God in my life and rededicate my life to Christ.

At this point I had no idea what the future held. Everything had been turned upside down. Through the passing days I realized I was okay with having children....and with having Stefan's children. One night I told him that when I had children, if I could afford it, I wanted to stay home with them. This was really important to me.

Fast forward a couple of years...and I'm pregnant with our first. I found out when Stefan and I were trying to get into the military (it actually disqualified me). We crunched the numbers and realized that, with his entering the military, it's financially advantageous for me to stay home.

So here I am! From feminist to house frau. It's the hardest job I've ever had, but it's also the most fulfilling.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

A letter to my son


Dear Franklin,

It's just one more month before you turn 2. I can't believe you're 2 already! It seems like just recently I was able to hold you in my arms for hours, and now you won't sit for more than a few minutes. You're on the move constantly.


There are times when I find myself getting annoyed with your behavior. I have to remind myself that there are pluses to these things. The antics during your endless bouts of energy will always make me laugh. The fact that you run yourself so hard means that I can always (well, usually) count on having you collapse on me for a nap. Your stubborn nature will help you become a leader in whatever crowd you choose. Your strong emotions and empathetic nature will help you become a loving husband. And even though I have to say "no" when you try to help with your brother, I'm happy to think that someday you'll make a great dad.

I'm sorry that I can't give you the individualized attention you want right now. I'm sorry I find myself yelling way more often than I should. I hope that someday you'll look back and realize that I did the best I could. I hope that you'll cherish the memories of sitting on my lap and rocking down for a nap, of playing on the floor in our living room, and of cuddling in bed first thing in the morning. I know that these are a few of the many memories I will hold near and dear to my heart.


I'm afraid to blink and miss you growing up; but, at the same time, I'm also excited to see the wonderful man I know you will become. I pray for you and your brother daily. I know that God has a plan for you.

I love you with all of my heart. I had no idea that I could love someone so much. You are an amazing little boy. I can't believe I'm 2 years closer to you being an amazing man.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Meal MAYhem is coming

Here's my idea (I want your thoughts!!!):

Have you ever seen the show "Chopped" on the Food Network? Click the link to read about it.

I'm thinking of doing something similar in the month of May. Last year I tried to photograph each night of dinner...that got overwhelming really quickly. This year I want to do something weekly instead.

Each Sunday I'll make a list of food items in my house. I'll randomly select one protein, one starch, and 3 fruits/veggies and then have to make dinner using those items. I'll only be "allowed" to add on 2 items (not including spices) to round out the meal. I'll do a post listing the required (not add on) items for you all to see. The challenge will be for you to take the week to figure out meal options with those items! Saturday I'll share what *I* chose and offer a link-up for my readers!

Does that make sense? Will you participate?

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