It's Here!!

>> Tuesday, July 31, 2007

So I came home from running errands and what was sitting at my doorstep? My new food processor that is what! Even 1 year ago I probably wouldn't be this excited about a small kitchen appliance but I have spent so much time researching these that it made my week! So now, because I am a total dork, here are the before and after pictures of my kitchen counter.

Before beautiful food processor


How about that? If I only would have enough time to use it tonight but we are going out on the boat and having a cold dinner on the water. I might just have to test it out on something once the kiddos go to bed because I can't stand the excitement!

Now, pictures of our jumping zoo members for Andrea, enjoy...


Crockpot Monday

>> Monday, July 30, 2007

The girls and I are going to the Cruisers story time at the library this morning. We will head to the park afterwards and by the time I get lunch fed to them and get them down for naps this afternoon I won't have a bunch of time to make dinner. The crockpot is a busy mamas best friend on days like this, normally we use our crockpot AT LEAST once a week. This is one of my all time favorite recipes for our family and a great one if you are expecting a bunch of guests and were thinking Italian. A friend of mine Rachel gave me this...

2-3 lbs boneless chuck steak, cut into 1/2" strips
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (26oz) jar of pasta sauce (we use Newman's Own Marinara)
Shredded Mozzarella
Veggies of your choice, ours are...
box of frozen chopped spinach
green pepper
yellow squash
or whatever we have in the house at the time

Brown steak in a skillet using 1 tbsp olive oil, transfer to crockpot. Sautee onions, garlic, and other veggies with 1 tbsp olive oil then transfer that to crockpot. Pour sauce over everything in crockpot, stir to coat, and cook on low for 8-10 hours. Right before serving stir in a hand full or 2 of the mozzarella. Serve over whole wheat linguine with a salad and warm Italian bread and watch your kids (and husbands) devour it!

This picture cracks me up. I wonder what has them both so intrigued with our (almost completely broken) wicker loveseat.


Simple Day

>> Sunday, July 29, 2007

I love days like today, lazy Sundays. We don't have to be anywhere or do anything we don't want to. Piper didn't go to bed until around 9:30 last night, she wasn't up with me just laying in bed NOT SLEEPING. Oh well, she didn't wake up Violet and eventually went down. The beautiful thing was that she slept until almost 8 this morning - mama got to sleep in! We got Matt up around 9 and were out on the water by 10. It is very overcast and somewhat cool here today, perfect for not frying little girl's skin. The island that we brought the boat to only had 2 other families there so it was nice and quiet. Once Piper gets in the water she is happy and there isn't much you can do to get her out. Violet was napping when we first arrived so I didn't get in for about an hour. We just got the Swimways Baby Spring Float Sun Canopy for Violet to float around in and had a Sun Smart one (a.k.a. boat) that is still working great for Piper. In fact, she has learned how to kick her feet to make her "boat" go where she wants it to and there is no stopping her now. Sadie chased a ball until she broke it in half and it sunk - crazy dog! The girls were pretty worn out when we left and now everyone is napping except me, I should go and lay down when I have the chance but here I am...blogging!



>> Saturday, July 28, 2007

That is all I have to say about our new AIO Dream Eze Diapers! They fit BOTH girls so well I am so excited and glad that I was able to swing buying some before the price goes up. Here is Piper last night in hers (and her Daddy's ugly footwear)

We went to a cloth diaper/sling get together/playgroup today with some other mamas off my mommie board. Neat meeting others that share the same likes/dislikes that I do. I hope to do it again except just hang out and not have to make sure my coolest dipes were clean to show off.

I just have to share this photo. The other night we went out swimming in the lake and I have to give the girls a bath after that. Here is our youngest waiting for lotion afterwards. I am so proud of those rolls - LOVE THEM!


The Waiting Game

>> Friday, July 27, 2007

Sometimes I think that I have a problem...buying things. I have been really good about not spending money lately but then I decided that we NEEDED a food processor. We have some gc's from BB&B that I was going to use to purchase my food processor so I started doing some research to find the right one for our family. Kitchen Aid vs. Cuisinart, I chose Kitchen Aid and wanted the Ultra Wide Mouth. Sweet right? 20% off coupon, $5 off coupon, and gc's in hand we headed to the store. They don't have it in the store! They only have the 9 cup! Darn it, back to the computer for more research. Anyway, to get back to my subject (I get off subject REALLY easy) I ended up ordering from Amazon and now I am doing the waiting game for my food processor to come and live with us.

What else is coming to our home? Fluffy Mail!!! a.k.a. diapers. You know, I swore that I wouldn't buy anymore diapers but my youngest is growing so quickly and will soon outgrow her mediums and I need something for her to wear. I also have been loving our Dream Eze fitted diapers so when I got the email from Montanas Diaper Store that the remainder of their AIO testers were going to be sold I had to buy some. The fit is perfect on both of our babes and I love that they use organic cotton. Ah, the waiting game once again.

Thankfully for our pocket book that is all I am getting. Everything will be used a ton because we are making Violet's baby food, being a Sneaky Chef with Piper, and the girls always need something on their bums so at least none of it will be wasted. I will be sure to talk about the love once everything arrives!

Quick picture from our fun day yesterday at North Meck Park. The sky was overcast for half the time making it most enjoyable weather wise. The park is nestled in an area with a bunch of trees. The equipment was perfect for our 2 year olds to play in and there are clean bathrooms and a nice picnic shelter to eat lunch when done playing. I used to love taking my mountain bike and riding their trail that they have but that was when I actually exercised - seems like a lifetime ago. Anyway - Piper was grinning ear to ear and her 2 hour nap proved that she had a blast!

And my other daughter, this is the only way that I can get a good nap out of Violet - thank goodness for mei tais. BTW, I made this one...


The Sneaky Chef

>> Wednesday, July 25, 2007

After hearing mixed reviews by other mamas about this book I decided that I was going to go ahead and try it out, worst case I would resell it on my mommie board. The only people that really said anything against it were those that believe that children should want to eat their vegetables and enjoy the experience to ready them for their futures as healthy adults, well they aren't raising my kid. As much as I would love for Piper to sit down with a big plate of spinach she just doesn't. She has the veggies that she enjoys eating but I don't want to limit her to just them. There will be a time for us to introduce those back into her diet but right now my 2 year old gets to say "No" to food and does on a regular basis. Here is the book - check it out...

So, first day home with the book I already had some zucchini and cauliflower in the house so I went ahead and made the white puree. I sneaked it in my own homemade mac&cheese rather than trying out Missy's recipe right off and it was a hit. We often put butternut squash in our mac&cheese and always some broccoli so that wasn't our real test, still to come. Missy's idea to put crushed up Total and wheat germ for the topping was genius though - I hadn't thought about that and was just using whole wheat bread crumbs on ours. We put wheat germ in so many things I can't believe I hadn't come up with that on my own! I decided to make the Chocolate Chip Pancakes and they went well so a few days later made the Cocoa Chocolate Chip Pancakes and even omitted the Chocolate Chips and my daughter loved them! That is an excellent method in my book to get her to eat her spinach and I have to say I tried them myself and they aren't bad. Today I brought her Chocolate Chip Cookies to our playgroup and none of the other mamas or kiddies could tell. We probably won't use every recipe in this book or make something from it every night but there are many dishes that I can already see making on a regular basis.


Nevin Sprayground

>> Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Today was such a great day! I saw that joy in my oldest daughter's eyes that you only get to see once in awhile. Like when they do something that is SO fun that they can't help but have a perma grin on their face the whole time. We visited Nevin Sprayground today which is located down in Mecklenburg County off exit 16. My friend Leslie, her son Kyle, another friend Rachael, and her daughter Rylyn joined Piper, Violet, and I for a last minute playdate at the sprayground. It took the kiddies a few minutes to get into the swing of things but once they were they had a grand old time! Leslie's pictures turned out much better than mine so they are compliements of her and Kyle. If you haven't been to a sprayground or fountain with your kiddos I HIGHLY RECOMMEND it!

Piper helps me every morning with the watering of the flowers so I bought her a little watering can of her own. She loves doing this and "smelling" the flowers while doing it. I feel so blessed to get to be home with my girls and witness these moments that touch my heart, there are so many!


Happy Birthday Piper!

>> Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Where has the time gone? I am sure that many mamas go through this at birthdays. Our babes are getting so big and it just seemed like yesterday that we were holding them for the first time and taking them home from the hospital. I remember when she was just born how after being laid on my belly she just stared into my eyes for like 15 minutes, she melted my heart. We joked that she had a birthmark on her hand that was shaped like a kiss and since have told her that it is a kiss from an angel.

Baby Piper

Our girl is 2!
Piper's Cake

We had a wonderful treat this year because Piper's Grandma and Grandpa Lucas, Uncle Peter and Aunt Sam, and cousins Addi & Chloe all came down to celebrate with us! We don't get to see the family too much being transplants to NC and it is always fun when they come to town. Joining Piper for her 2nd birthday was also our dear friends Shawna & Brian, Amber & Andy, Howard & Connie, Lynnie, and fellow July birthday girls Lisa and Jerry. We had a fun time and Matt enjoyed his role as Grill Master.

Grill Master

The rain was thinking about hitting us but decided to only spit so we were able to enjoy some cool breezes and wonderful overcast skies. Couldn't have been a better day. All kiddies slept like logs after the festivities. Thank you to all who came and shared our daughter's special day with us!

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I am 45 years old and married to my best friend Matthew. We are the parents of 3 girls, 2 dogs, and a cat. This is the story of us, try to stay awake.
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