Saturday, March 31, 2012

An Accurate Representation of Our Week

'Nana? ::Jack points to bananas::

Would you like a banana?


::Peel a banana, break it in half, offer it to Jack::


Don't you want a banana?


Would you like me to cut it up?


Yes, do you want a big piece or would you like me to cut it up?


Okay...  ::puts banana back on the counter::


Do you want to eat a banana?


::hand him the banana again, this time he takes it::

::looks at banana for a minute, hands it back to me:: No.

::put the banana BACK on the counter::


Jack!  Do you actually want the banana?

YES!  'Nana!

::hand him the banana, he takes it again, takes one bite, hands it back::

All done.

Jack is 2 and teething and we are both lacking sleep.  It's not a good combination!  I feel like he's been working on these molars  They're definitely coming through, but taking their good ol' time.

In between little sleep and meltdowns and attitudes galore, we did manage to have some fun this week!

Tuesday we went to a play date at a friend's house.

Wednesday evening I met some friends for coffee and discussion of this month's book club selection.

And on Friday we went to play at a friend's house.

It's good to get out of the house as we are seeing some very long days as of late!  Last year at this time we were dealing with one-year molars.  Hopefully, like last time, we'll have a couple more weeks of this and then we'll be back to our regularly scheduled programming.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Menu Plan Monday - Week of March 25th

Sunday:  Chipotle Sweet Potato Corn Chowder with Beer Bread

Monday:  Pulled Pork Sandwiches (CrockPot) on Homemade Buns with Coleslaw and Chips

Tuesday:  Chicken Yakisoba

Wednesday:  Turkey Cranchiladas (from the freezer) with Chips and Salsa

Thursday:  Homemade Pizza

Friday:  Burgers on the grill (I'll probably do Mushroom and Swiss and Mark will probably want his with cheese only as usual!) on Homemade Buns with Garlic Oven Fries

Saturday:  Leftovers/Out

I'm linked at Menu Plan Monday hosted by

Friday, March 23, 2012

Friday Randoms: Busy Week Recap

Busy, busy week this week!  We've had some gorgeous {Summer} weather to kick off the start of Spring {???} so we've been out and about enjoying it!

It always surprises me once the sun comes back how much better I feel!  It definitely effects my mood.  After a little fresh air and sunshine I feel happier and more motivated for sure!  Gotta love that vitamin D!  Even though we had the mildest Winter I can ever remember it was still cold and gray and I was definitely craving some sun.  I just love having the windows open and seeing things turn green again.

Last weekend I hit the store on Saturday rather than my usual Sunday and there's definitely something to be said for Saturday shopping!  I felt like I had my whole weekend in front of me rather than spending my whole Sunday grocery shopping and doing laundry.  I may try that again this weekend!

With the "extra" time I had on Sunday I packed up the too small clothes from Jack's drawers to make way for the new stuff he got for his birthday!  And then I spent all afternoon working on dinner just to have it derailed by a tornado warning :-/

Yep, that would be me reading with my booklight during the power outage.  At least my hobbies don't require power.  The book is Ken Follett's Fall of Giants and it's excellent!

Monday we went to a play date at a friend's house and were able to get out after dinner for a family walk.  We've had some gorgeous {albeit unseasonably warm} weather this week and we've been trying to enjoy it as much as possible!

Tuesday we went to the zoo for the first time this year!  Jack was... unimpressed.  I thought he'd be more into it, but all he wanted to do was ride in the stroller.  That's not necessarily a bad thing, but whenever we stopped to see something he didn't want to look he just wanted to GO!  Our converstations went like this:

Jack!  Do you see the elephant?!  See him?!  He's eating straw!

No!  Goooo!  GOOO!

What about the lions?  Do you see the lions?!  You like lions!  RAWR!!! 

NOOO!  Go! 


Oh well, maybe next time.  He did enjoy the aquarium.  He was talking about all the "tish".

Tuesday night I enjoyed dinner with friends while Mark and Jack had a boy's night in.

Wednesday we rested!  And tended to things at home that had been ignored while we were go-go-go at the start of the week.  We were also able to get in another post-dinner walk as a family.

Also, Jack got to try some fresh pineapple and really liked it!  I brought home a pineapple from the store over the weekend and Jack immediately started talking about the "Pi-bapple", which was rather surprising as we've never really talked about pineapples to my knowledge.  He must have seen it on Sesame Street or possibly in a book or something.  Anyway, it was definitely nothing discussed extensively, but he talked about it every time he saw it!  It was finally time to eat it on Wednesday evening and Jack was really excited about it.  I was hopeful that that excitement would translate to liking the taste as I've given him pineapple before and he didn't care for it.  I let him watch me cut it up and then gave him a piece and although his face didn't seem too sure at first, when I asked him how it was he said, "good" and then immediately asked for more!  He definitely liked it because he ended up eating quite a bit.  I hope I can get him to try more things by getting him excited about it like the "Pi-bapple".

Thursday evening I hit up the first consignment sale of the year.  Jack got lots of great clothes for his birthday so thankfully we're pretty well set, but he needs a few more things and I'm always looking ahead to what he'll need in the next size up.  I'm pretty happy that we've entered toddler sizes which he should wear for longer, which makes it far easier to plan what he'll need since the same size should span multiple seasons.

The sale was PACKED and unfortunately they didn't have much in his size, but I did get a few things that were needed.

Everything I purchased is Carter's brand 3T.  I got:

3 pairs lightweight cotton PJs (2 of the pairs are vehicle related - monster trucks and a fire truck, Jack was really excited about these!) -- $3.50 each
1 long-sleeved t-shirt -- $1.50
1 pair cargo pants -- $2

Total: $14

He's currently wearing 2T clothes, but should be able to wear the cotton PJs right away since those tend to fit a little small anyway.  He'll be able to use them in the Fall as well.  He will probably be ready for the long-sleeved T in the Fall and I would *guess* the pants won't fit until next year, but you never know!  That's why I like to have the next size up on hand!  I'll hit a few more of these sales over the coming weeks.  Definitely the best deals around considering everything I got was VERY gently used!

Today I'm cleaning and washing diapers as usual, but I have plans to bleach Jack's diapers as they're in need of some deep cleaning.  This is the first time I've had to do anything special to them in more than 9 months though so I'm still pretty pleased with our current wash routine!  Having to bleach them once or twice a year to deep clean seems totally reasonable to me with toddler diapers.

In between we've read Go, Dog. Go!  a hundred times and played trucks for hours on end. 

Pretty good week if you ask me.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Menu Plan Monday - Week of March 18th

I spent several hours on Sunday slowly simmering spaghetti sauce and homemade meatballs just to hear the sirens announcing this year's first tornado warning as I was waiting for the pasta water to boil and the oven to heat up to bake the garlic bread.  Thankfully we didn't see any tornadoes, but we did get some good-sized hail and lost power until the wee hours of Monday morning.  Whomp, whomp.  Instead of the nice dinner I had worked on for hours I quickly put a plate of random pickings together for Jack's dinner after the sirens stopped blaring.  Once Jack was tucked in bed for the night I ate a turkey sandwich while Mark chose to eat some meatballs all by their lonesome.  And then I got to do dishes by candlelight -- how romantic!  So.  Needless to say our meal plan had to be adjusted a bit.  At least dinner was nearly ready to go for tonight!

Sunday:  Stupid tornado  ::shakes fist::

Monday:  Spaghetti and Meatballs with Garlic Bread

Tuesday:  Mom's Night Out with friends for me!  The boys are having a night in and will probably have pizza for dinner

Wednesday:  Grilled Hawaiian Pork Chops with Pineapple-Cilantro Quinoa

Thursday:   Grilled Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches on Homemade Buns (I think I'm going to try a whole-wheat adaptation this time) with Baked Sweet Potato Fries

Friday:  Quiche Lorraine with Salad

Saturday:  Coconut Chicken with Apricot Sauce with Roasted Broccoli 

I'm linked at Menu Plan Monday hosted by

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Blake Shelton Saved My Sanity

Several months ago, whilst on a date night sans Little Man {one of only a handful of nights by ourselves in the last two years!  Holy moly, we I need to get better about that!}, over the din of an adults-only atmosphere I heard a few notes from a song which jogged my memory.

Hmm... this song sounds familiar... I'm sure I've heard it somewhere before?  WHERE have I heard it?  WHAT'S THAT SONG FROM?!?!

Photographic evidence of our night out:

Of course I alerted Mark and asked him if he recognized the song only to be met with: what song?  The man can NEVER hear background music.  Never.  And then the song was over.  And I was left trying tell Mark which song it was, but I had no idea what it was from, who sang it, or even any of the lyrics!  All I knew was the beat of the song so I'm all, oh, you know the song that goes "bum bum ba bum..."  Yeahno.

Mark suggested I had likely heard it on Grey's Anatomy, which is an extremely good hypothesis as that's this country music girl's only exposure to hipster music, and this was most definitely hipster music.  But without being able to confirm that as fact, and without being able to properly place this song, it began driving me nuts!

Over the last few months I'd hear snippets of the song here and there, but never enough to help me find what the song was.  I heard it at a local playplace over the sounds of screaming kids.  I heard it on American Idol as they were headed to commercial break. 

AND THEN.  By some obvious divine TV intervention I turned on The Voice tonight {not something we watch on the regular} only to find Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert {Pink Puffy Heart LOVE her!} coaching some wannabe singer chicks into singing the song.  THE SONG!

And then Blake mentioned the name of the song and the artist and I was able to properly confirm via a quick Google search that yes, I had heard it on Grey's Anatomy.  BOOM!  MYSTERY SOLVED!

All is now right again in my world and I can *almost* forgive Blake for being in any way affiliated with that terrible shenanigans that is the remake of 1980's classic Footloose.

Question: What's wrong with this picture?  Answer:  EVERYTHING.

I leave you with The Song:

Monday, March 12, 2012

Menu Plan Monday - Week of March 11th

Mark took care of the weekly shopping trip (along with the majority of childcare duties this weekend) as I was feeling a little under the weather due to (I think) some seasonal allergies.  He came home with a Serrano Pepper instead of a Jalapeno, 3/4 lb. ground beef instead of a full pound due to misreading my grocery list, and forgot the tortilla chips all together, but I sure do appreciate his help!  And, in his defense, why exactly is it that Kroger doesn't label the vegetable bins in the produce section?  Some of those peppers do look alike!

The weather looks great this week, so we'll take advantage of it with some dinners on the grill!

Sunday:  Buffalo Chicken Grilled Cheese with Ranch Potato Wedges

Monday:  Guinness and Onion Soup with Irish Cheddar Crouton

Tuesday:  Hearty Black Bean Quesadillas with Chips and Salsa

Wednesday:  Pi(e) Day!  I'm making a Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie to properly celebrate :)  Also: Grilled Burgers on Homemade Buns (I stashed 4 of these in the freezer when I made them before!) with Baked Sweet Potato Fries

Thursday:  Teriyaki Chicken with Veggie Fried Rice

Friday:  Leftovers/Out

Saturday: St. Patrick's Day!  Pot Roast with Stout Gravy

I'm linked at Menu Plan Monday hosted by 

Friday, March 9, 2012

Friday Randoms


It's been yet another trying week.  Jack's been in a bad mood for most of the week and that combined with his normal two-year-oldness finds me with nearly nonexistent patience at the close of the week!  To top it off, today he decided we needed to start our day about 2 hours earlier than usual, which leaves us both tired and cranky.  Not good.  In his defense, his 'tude and behavior is most definitely influenced by the fact that he's teething with his (bottom, oy... we still have one more set to go after this!) 2-year molars.  They are *finally* visible.  He will only open his mouth for about 0.02 seconds when he feels like it so from what I've been able to glimpse I'm not sure if they're actually poking through yet, or just visible beneath the gums. Either way, there's an end in sight (at least for this set) and hopefully he'll be sleeping better soon, which will put both of us in better moods! 



I made Chocolate Chip Cookies yesterday (not just Chocolate Chip Cookies, The. Best. Chocolate Chip Cookies EVAR!).  Because it was Thursday.  Of a long week.  And I had been craving sweets all week and after four days of ignoring the craving to no avail, I caved.  It was time.  I limited myself to one cookie after they came out of the oven (because, how can you NOT eat one fresh out of the oven?!) and one cookie for dessert last night.  I've discovered that it's pretty much torture to only eat a single cookie at a time.  It's like, you might as well just skip it all together because if you give a Stephanie a cookie, she's going to want another one!



 I sat down with my single Best Chocolate Chip Cookie Evar! all ready to watch Grey's Anatomy, just to discover that it was a rerun.  Again.  Whomp, whomp.  Am I the only person that is SO over the ridiculousness that is TV nowadays?  All these half-seasons and mid-season finales and random hiatuses (hiati?  Anyway...) and coming back for a week just to be randomly on rerun for the next two weeks drives. me. nuts.!  It seriously makes me want to give up watching TV in favor of waiting for everything to come out on DVD and getting it through Netflix to watch marathon style. 



Also on the subject of television watching, I took a big step this week.  I finally worked up the courage to delete a crap show from my DVR schedule.  That's right.  I've been working up the courage for a few weeks, and finally at Mark's prodding, I did it.  Private Practice?  Gone-zo!  We started watching PP when it originally spun off of Grey's back when Grey's was actually good (remember that?  Barely.).  Mark never liked it (because he doesn't like Addison), but begrudgingly tolerated it.  This season, even I had to admit it's a terrible show.  I realized I didn't look forward to watching it, Mark complained every time I turned it on, it was time.  But for some reason, once I spend time getting into a show and devote so many hours to watching it, it's hard to break up!  But break up I did, and it feels good!  Beware TV shows, I'm scrutinizing you and I'm no longer afraid of the delete button!  I'd also axe Desperate Housewives if it wasn't the last season.  Eeesh. 



I guess I have a lot to say about television programming this week, so one last thing: we finally got Game of Thrones Disk 1 from Netflix -- It's ON!  I have been looking forward to this show for.ev.ah. and I've finally got it!  Movie TV Show Night tonight!  I read A Game of Thrones (as well as A Clash of Kings, actually) and it's fabulous!  Can't wait to see the television adaptation.  I just hope I'm not disappointed!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Menu Plan Monday - Week of March 4th

Sunday:  With family for a birthday celebration!

Monday:  Homemade Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese Panini

Tuesday:  Baked Chicken Chimichangas with Deluxe Tomatillo Sauce and (Not) Refried Beans (from the freezer!)

Wednesday:  It's supposed to be really nice this day so it's time for some grilling!  Steaks with Baked Potatoes and Salad

Thursday:  Turkey Lasagna with Sage and Three Cheeses (from the freezer!) with Salad

Friday:  Homemade Pizza with Salad

Saturday: Leftovers/Out

I'm linked at Menu Plan Monday hosted by

Thursday, March 1, 2012


Whew!  We have had a busy couple of weeks!  Working, and socializing, and birthday party planning, and preparing for said party, and celebrating a birthday!  Lots of stuff going on!

In the meantime, this kid?

I adore this pose!  This is what he does whenever he's actually interested in taking a picture now.  No idea as to where he got it, but it's pretty funny!

He's two-years-old.  TWO!  Craziness! 

We celebrated Jack's birthday with a party with family and friends on Saturday.  Jack had a blast!  And he ate a cupcake.  It was a good time had by all.  We had a friend there taking pictures for us so I don't have any to share yet, but soon!

Sunday we recovered from the party (and all the work leading up to it!).  If it gives you any indication of the amount of work that went into the party this is what my kitchen looked like when we came home that night:


Monday, Mark took off from work so we could have a family day together in honor of Jack's birthday!  His birthday was actually on Tuesday, but the timing just worked out better for Mark to take off on Monday and I'm sure Jack didn't mind!

The weather cooperated beautifully so we headed to a local park for some fun play time!

Walking with DaDa.

Riding the bumblebee!

Up the slide.



He loves other kids!  Jack found a little friend to play with.

Down the slide.

Afterwards, we had lunch at Panera where the last-day-as-a-one-year-old-boy enjoyed a grilled cheese and yogurt.  His kind of meal!

On Jack's actual birthday Jack started the day with a birthday bagel!  He loves to share some of DaDa's bagel on the weekends, so as a special treat DaDa left him one for his birthday breakfast.

Then, we had some of his little friends over to play to help him celebrate turning two!

After Jack woke up from his birthday nap, he had some play time with DaDa, watched some Toy Story, and then we had homemade pizza for dinner because it's the birthday boy's favorite!

Lots of birthday fun was had by all and I can't believe my little boy is already two!