Thursday, November 16, 2017

Thankful 11.16.17

Hello!

Here is what I was thankful for this week:

Thursday:

  1. Instagram stories and the entertainment/adult social interaction they provide. 
  2. Ina's school valet line - not getting out of the car really helps this momma out. 
  3. Some of Dan's family came over for a visit and treated us to Chinese food. I loved having them over at our house, sitting in our living room, just chatting away and holding babies. The best.
Friday:

  1. A really good workout. The amazing people at my gym put a lot of time and energy into planning our workouts and I am so lucky to be able to roll right in without having to put much thought into it. 
  2. I was able to get a good chunk of the storage area in our basement cleaned out while the big girls were at Danielle's and Mira decided she was having a "nap day." I made my third trip to donate stuff this week, which also felt so good. 
  3. Early bedtimes. Seriously, by Friday night I am exhausted at about 6 PM now that I have a 4:30 alarm for the gym. 
Saturday:
  1. A sparkling clean refrigerator. 
  2. A little bit of park time with the older girls while Dan was working at his mom's house and Granny was watching Mira. Ina rode her bike there wile Cora and I walked behind and I noticed she skidded to a stop a few feet from the playground. As I got closer, I saw two 9(ish) year old boys playing while Ina stood frozen, staring at them. She then loudly whispered, "Mom, there are teenagers here!" and dramatically turned her bike around to leave. Once I convinced her that they were not teenagers and even if they were, the park is meant to be shared, she stayed but steered clear of them the rest of the time. Cora, however, followed them around like a puppy and kept on asking, "What are we doing guys?" and would count aloud with them while they were playing hide and seek, often skipping numbers, all while they completely ignored her. I love how different my two girls are and I can't wait to see how Mira plays into our family dynamic.
  3. I ended the day in a good mood. I hate to say this, but more often than not I don't maintain a good mood all day, particularly when the after dinner hustle and bedtime routine are happening. But, it was a good day, for no particular reason, and I tried to imprint in my brain the memory of us all sitting on our bed, Dan changing Cora's diaper, me changing Mira's diaper, and Ina running around trying to make us laugh. 
Sunday:
  1. My nephew Bauer turned two! We celebrated at my sister's house with family, soup, and cake. 
  2. Miss Emily couldn't watch the kids at small group so her parents came instead, brought cookies and games, and played OUTSIDE in the cold with the children. We are beyond blessed with the best village. 
  3. Danielle brought over baked potato soup for dinner after small group. Yum!

Monday:
  1. Mira's 2 month appointment went great. She is in the 99 percentile for length (24.5 inches) and 90% percentile for weight (13 pounds 4 oz.). She is looking great in every way and had her two month vaccines. I had the older girls in tow and they were able to get their flu vaccines, which they weren't too happy about. However, Ina did inform me she showed her whole preschool class her bandaid (which was on her upper thigh). Oh my.
  2. All the fall colors. Just beautiful.
  3. Mira's coos. They get cuter and more heart melting by the hour.

Tuesday:
  1. What a 30 minute walk can do to change the mood of everyone in the house. 
  2. Dan brought home pre-cut and marinated chicken and steak from a Mexican grocery store. Oh my heavens, it was amazing. We just seared it up in a pan and served it on tortillas with limes and cilantro. This will be on our weekly dinner rotation. 
  3. The girls went all day without any TV or screen time. I have been letting them watch way too much TV, honestly because it is a lot easier than trying to entertain them while also caring for a newborn. But, this isn't how I want them to spend their time or how I want to spend my maternity leave, so we are doing a little TV detox and will sparingly add it back in. 

Wednesday:
  1. Mira slept 7 hours straight! However, Ina was awake a good chunk of the night so I didn't sleep for 7 hours straight, but sleep is in sight. I can smell it.
  2. The Fly-Swatter sight word game. Ina loved it and I also made letters for Cora. I can't believe how many she already knows. 
  3. Throat Coat tea - it always helps. 
Recipes I have made this week:

Fajitas - no recipe to link, but they were still really good, so I thought I would document them. I marinated chicken breast (pounded out and cut into 1 inch chunks) in olive oil, garlic, salt, and lime juice all day. I started the searing process and added black pepper, cumin, and chili powder. Then Dan took over while I was feeding Mira and cooked the bell peppers and onions that I had also pre-chopped in the morning. We ate them with salsa, sour cream, cheese, and avocado. Oh, and a Corona with lime. Yum.

Overnight oats - a base of equal parts oats, greek yogurt (I use plain full fat), and almond milk (or milk of choice). Mix together and let sit for at least an hour or up to a few days. Top with anything you like. I love almond butter and jelly or sliced banana and walnuts.

Banana pancakes - one of my favorite pancake recipes.

Blender bean muffins: the girls will always eat one or two of these for breakfast if they are available.

Butternut Squash Breakfast Casserole with spinach added has been my breakfast this week. Cora loved it more than I did.

Pizza Beans: (made with great northern beans and turkey Italian sausage added in) I loved these! Both Dan and I had seconds. However, the girls, who normally love white beans of any kind, weren't all that interested, which was pretty disappointing. Ina actually asked, "Mom, please don't even make pizza beans again..." even though she finished her plate. Maybe it was the kale...

Sullivan Street Bread: Although I love this recipe, it isn't really conducive to baking while small group is going on. Dan took it out of the oven on the first alarm...about 20 minutes too soon. So, we had to slice it and broil it again. Ha!

Chicken curry with brown rice, naan, and steamed garlicy green beans. This dinner was delicious - Dan and I loved it. The girls must be having an off week, because they didn't each much.

Have a great end to your week! <3



Thursday, November 9, 2017

Thankful 11.9.17

Hello there! How are things going?

I have to be honest and say that the end of last week I felt like I was losing my mind. I was grouchy a lot. I yelled a lot. I made mean faces a lot (according to Ina). I could feel myself being that way, and didn't like it, but still didn't do anything to stop it. Ugh, sometimes being a mom is hard.

But, I still found things to be thankful for, which has helped my mood for sure. Also, after a great sermon on Sunday I was able to turn my attitude around and have a little more positive outlook.

Thursday:

  1. Trader Joe's cinnamon brooms. Is there a better smell?
  2. I took all three girls by myself to Costco and TJs and although the toy aisle was hard, we made it out alive.
  3. Ina's school had an event called "Light the Night," which was basically a party in the school with all the lights turned off and glow in the dark toys everywhere. We started out in the obstacle course, made our way to the balloon dance party, and then ended with glow in the dark magna tiles and rice. Cora could not stop screaming, "This is fun!!!" I really want to recreate something like that in our basement. Maybe for Ina's birthday?

Friday:
  1. I organized my closet and dresser, which was a disaster as I am in a size/shape transition. I put away all of my maternity and summer clothes and got out my old fall and winter clothes. I have to be honest and say that some of those might not fit, but I did buy a new pair of jeans that I am in love with in a size larger than I normally wear. It feels so good to wear normal clothes again.
  2. Kim knitted Ina the cutest headband. 
  3. When I picked up the girls from Danielle's she sent me home with a loaf of banana bread. She is the best. 
Saturday:
  1. Dan had some help and was able to get a lot of his mom's stuff moved. There is still some work to do, but we/they are getting closer to the end of it every day!
  2. We inherited new furniture for our living room from Dan's mom. We are now the proud owners of a set that includes 5 recliners. FIVE! We have now met our life goals and need to come up with new ones. 
  3. A few of my friends from high school and their children came over for an evening playdate. I love chatting with them and the hours flew by. I was sad to see them leave.
Sunday:

(this picture pretty much sums up my life right now)
  1. After church we traded family picture photography with the Nybergs and although I didn't think we could possibly produce a usable picture due to Cora's mouth being full of cashews and her refusal to do anything we told her to do, Dan forgetting to get a hair cut the night before, and Mira being in her pajamas because it was too cold to change her into anything else, there were actually a few good ones.
  2. After family pictures we headed to the Nybergs house for some very very delicious brunch burgers.
  3. We had small group and dinner at the Cartwrights new house. It was beautiful and delicious and Miss Emily was able to take the kids outside to jump on the trampoline.

Monday:
  1. I made my first (of hopefully many) trips to Salvation Army for a donation. Operation Minimalism is a go. 
  2. Our friends the Whitneys came over for an afternoon play date that transformed into a dinner date after we added a box of mac and cheese to the menu.
  3. Dan made us an after dinner treat - Masala tea with some tea he brought back from India. It was so yummy, warm, and comforting. 
Tuesday:

  1. Baby coos. It feels like she is actually talking to me. Melts my heart. 
  2. Cora had a tantrum during story time at the library, but we were able to turn it around and walked out with dignity and our heads held high.
  3. The Champs came over for dinner and playtime. Danielle and I enjoyed a glass of wine while the kids ran around like crazy people and may or may not have broke into the Halloween face paint.
Wednesday:
  1. Granny came over to watch the big girls while Mira and I went to see my midwife.
  2. Speaking of that, there is now a 99.9% chance we will not have any more babies. For at least five years. Thank God.
  3. My mom came over with toy catalogs which entertained Ina for a solid hour. I remember looking through those when I was a kid and I loved 
I didn't do a lot of cooking this week, but a few recipes we made:

Easy paleo breakfast casserole: I have had this for breakfast every day this week and I love it.

Pizza pinwheels: such a playdate food because kids can grab and go and they aren't as messy as a slice of pizza. 

French Dip Sliders: these are really good - if you are ever looking for easy appetizers, make these for sure.

Skyline chili - a classic favorite.

Spiced shrimp with naan, cilantro, and yogurt. I can't stop with this recipe. I want to eat it every week.

Have you tried any recipes lately that were a success? What are you thankful for?

Have a great week! <3


Thursday, November 2, 2017

Thankful 11.2.17

Thursday:
  1. Ina didn't have preschool today, so we had a day without leaving the house, which was a nice break. This makes me laugh so much, because when Ina was an infant, there were many, many days we didn't leave the house. However, because of her older sisters, Mira is mostly along for the ride.
  2. My body isn't as sore from exercising as it was on Monday. Trying to stay positive. 
  3. My friend Michele and her kids came over for dinner. Talking with her always does my heart good, and she brought over pumpkin cake, which made my belly happy as well.

Friday:
  1. My mom brought over Cora's Halloween costume - yay! it came in time and matches Ina's! Now we just need to get her to wear it. Minor detail.
  2. My aunt and uncle came in town took the older girls with them to my grandparents' house for the night. Before they left we chatted and then went to lunch. I love that they give me some momma-baby time, but I also love getting the chance to catch up with them.
  3. Dan and I had a date night (with Mira) that involved my second trip to Aldi for the day (is it weird that I loved it?), wine, a movie, and bacon wrapped, cheese stuffed jalapeños. 
Saturday:
  1. With the big girls gone and Mira immobile, I took advantage of my free time and cleared out the many items in my kitchen cabinets that we have not used since we moved here more than six years ago. All the items are currently sitting in our garage, awaiting a garage sale. Any guesses on how long it will take me to pull one of those off? 
  2. When I picked up the girls at my grandparents', we all played a few rounds of UNO while waiting for Cora to wake up from a nap. Nothing beats card games at my grandparents' house.
  3. We left my grandparents' house and went over to my brother's church's trunk-or-treat. I loved seeing all the trunks decorated, all the costumes, and his family. 
Sunday:
  1. New planners and friends who nerd-out over them just as much as I do.
  2. My dad and his girlfriend brought over some Halloween treats for the girls and my birthday presents. I was beyond spoiled with a pedicure and A TREADMILL! Whoop whoop! I ran a hole in my old one, so I can't wait to get this one set up.
  3. I felt like I had mad mom skills when I successfully rocked both Cora and Mira to sleep at the same time right before small group started. 
Monday:

  1. I went back to the gym and I survived. I modified quite a bit, was way slower than I used to be, and there were a few moves I just didn't do very well (like v-ups, because my core muscles have disappeared), but I showed up and sometimes that is the hardest part, particularly when your baby who always goes right back to sleep after being fed at 4:30 AM is wide awake. 
  2. My kitchen tongs. They were something I never bought because I never thought I needed them, but now that I have them I use them all the time. 
  3. Dan took over the pumpkin carving activity this year and everything went great. I was so tired after dinner and didn't feel like carving mine, but after hearing Dan, Ina, and Cora sing multiple renditions of, Do Your Guts Hang Low, I couldn't help but get in the spirit and invested the 10 minutes. So happy I did.


Tuesday:



  1. The girls and I had the treat of meeting the very nice couple whose house Dan's company has been working on lately. They gave the girls the sweetest treats. We also had the chance to tour their house and property, which was absolutely beautiful. I can't wait to go back.
  2. On our way to my sister's house, we received word that Dan's grandma was going to the hospital likely to a heart attack, so we turned around so Dan could go to the hospital with his mom. Thankfully, his grandma is doing OK now, although they don't know exactly what was wrong yet. 
  3. My sister made us dinner, my aunt and uncle helped take the big girls trick or treating while I fed the baby, and my mom fixed me a warm adult beverage. I love Halloween. 
Wednesday:

  1. My aunt sent the girls the cutest sister shirts. I wanted to do something like this, but kind of forgot, so I am happy she remembered for me.
  2. I have started watching The Office (again) during nap time and I pretty much don't stop laughing. I forgot how funny that show is.
  3. A warm cup of tea and heated seats on a chilly drive. It is just so cozy. 
Recipes I made this week:

Smoked chicken legs, smashed potatoes, and salad.

Sweet Potato Banana Bites (made into bars for way less of a mess)

Butternut squash soup with sandwiches. You guys, that soup is absolutely amazing, like eating fall out of a bowl. I know what I am doing with the four butternut squashes piled on my pantry floor right now. Make it. Don't skip the curry powder.

Basic Bulgogi (made with pork loin) with brown rice and roasted cauliflower and broccoli. I should note that Dan is a meat and potatoes comfort food type guy who is usually a pretty good sport with my food experiments, so when I answered his "What's for dinner?" question with, "a Korean pork dish" he gave me a heavy sigh, which he apologized for over and over after he tasted it. I loved it and will make it again soon.

Paleo blender muffins (with a few mini chocolate chips added for the girls). I love having something I can grab for them for breakfast during the crazy morning routine.

Breakfast salads (greens topped with roasted veggies and fried eggs).


Chicken with bacon and brussels sprouts and smashed potatoes. That meal will be a weeknight staple for sure. Just two pieces of bacon gave the sprouts and chicken so much flavor.

Also, full disclosure, I have been eating a large amount of dark chocolate with almonds, a bar I just discovered at Aldi but need to stop purchasing soon. Ha!

Have a great week!

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Thankful 10.26.17

Good morning!

Things are continuing to truck along over here. Here are a few things I was thankful for this week, with some recipes we have made linked at the end of the post.


Thursday:
  1. Ina didn't wear a pull up to bed and woke up dry. Yay! This will put a little wiggle room in the diaper budget.
  2. My first post pregnancy jog is in the books! I hadn't planned on running (which was obvious by my wardrobe selection), but when Ina decided to ride her bike to the park, I had little choice but to run to keep up with her. The jog was jiggly and slow with lots of stops, and there were times when it felt like my insides were falling out, but I felt good at the end. I missed those endorphins.
  3. Granny came over to watch the girls while Dan and I moved a few things for her. This was the first time we had to ourselves out of the house since Mira was born, and it honestly felt like a 45 minute date. It's the little things.
Friday:
  1. The big girls were at Danielle's and Mira decided to sleep for most of the day, so I did some stuff around the house and after 8 hours still feel like there is so much to do. Of note, I scrubbed down the trashcan that had a mysterious substance on the lid that was attracting flies, brought out Cora's fall 2T clothes that hopefully aren't too big and stored away her summer clothes for Mira, washed/dried/folded/put away every stitch of laundry, including all the bedding, and added November availability for my incredibly part time job. 
  2. While Mira was awake she did give me a full blown smile a few times...which was mostly sandwiched by looks of complete confusion. I know a smile doesn't sound like that big of a deal, but I have spent the last 6 weeks mostly looking at her, all the while she is looking just past me, or over my head, with her eyes never really focusing. However, this time, when I walked into the room to pick her up and said hello, her eyes focused right on mine, a look of recognition crossed her face, and then she broke into a huge smile, almost as if saying, "there you are mommy!" Heart melted.
  3. Cora figured out how to unlock my van from the inside! Thankfully! Let me start from the beginning. When I pick up the girls from Danielle's, her sons often walk the girls to the car and sometimes get in the van as well and play with them while I am chatting with Danielle. On this particular day, Ina and Gunner (the bigger kids) were talking to the neighbors, I was chatting with Danielle and Kyle, while Mira, Cora, and Gibson were in the van playing. Somehow the "lock" button was pressed and after Gibson left the car all the doors were shut and my two youngest babies were locked in the van with the only set of keys I own in the ignition. Thankfully, it was a beautiful day outside, so heat wasn't a concern. Also, thankfully, I had not yet buckled Cora in her carseat. So, if you can just picture three adults coercing Cora to the front seat and trying to get her to press different buttons, yelling, Cora, press that button! No, not that one! Up! Down! Again! for 10 minutes all the while Cora is giving us suspicious looks, knowing she usually isn't allowed to touch the buttons, haphazardly pressing all the buttons in the car, while taking breaks to play with something she found in the cupholder. Then, Danielle had the genius idea to have Cora take the keys out of the ignition and press the unlock button on the key and after a few more minutes of telling her which side of the key and no, don't put it back in the ignition, she did it! We were all so proud! 


Saturday:
  1. We started out the day in remembrance of our friends' daughter participating in a walk around the lake for the Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Virtual Walk-a-Thon. It was nice to get out early in the morning with some friends and shake our legs out.
  2. We celebrated Gibson's 3rd birthday with some delicious food and great company. I just love birthday parties.
  3. After an hour break we went to some friends' wedding. We were so happy to see some old high school friends we hadn't seen in a long time. Even though we had the girls with us and had to leave super early (we snuck out during the speeches), I love weddings and it was good to see everyone. 

(Amy caught a picture of me teaching Cora to jump like a frog. Ha!)

Sunday:
  1. We started a new sermon series at church called, Choose Joy, which I desperately need in my life. A few thoughts I took away:
    • You find what you look for.
    • Be a hummingbird (looking for life) instead of a buzzard (looking for death)
    • I always have something to be happy about - my salvation - and there is nothing better than that.
  2. Our friends the Nybergs came over after church for lunch. The kids played while the adults talked and I didn't want them to leave.
  3. After everyone left from small group I was so exhausted from Mira waking up often the past few nights and Dan did everything for dinner: making, serving, and cleaning up, while I sat on the couch feeding Mira willing my eyes to stay open. 
Monday:



  1. I completed the first day of Jillian Michaels Body Revolution and didn't die. I remember doing this after Cora was born and thought the first video was super easy, which wasn't exactly my thought this time around. My whole body is sore. 
  2. Ina is truly loving riding her bike. Dan and I want to get the girls balance bikes for Christmas and we are so excited. I have never been more thankful that we live at the end of a (rather large) cul-de-sac than when Mira was sleeping inside and Ina was riding circles outside and Cora was somewhere in between with me. 
  3. We visited the high school's "haunted hallway" Monday evening. My mom tagged along to help with the girls, and thankfully she did, because it took all three adults to wrangle Ina and Cora while I wore Mira after we waited in line for over an hour to get in. Then Cora, who has very little trick-or-treating experience, wanted to open every piece of candy she received and was happy to eat it, until she received another one, after which she put the previous half eaten piece on the floor and begged/screamed to have the new piece opened. After about two rounds of that my mom took charge of Cora's candy bucket and Cora cautiously walked along with a sucker. (Also, Cora's costume isn't in yet, so she borrowed Ina's from a few years ago.)



Tuesday:

  1. We had a surprise visit from my cousin and grandma. They played with the girls while I did an exercise video and then brought me lunch. Does it get better?
  2. Our friends the Bartletts came over for dinner and brought the most delicious vegetarian chili. The adults enjoyed great conversation while the kids played. 
  3. Dan found his phone, that we thought he lost, that he just got two days before because he broke his old one that he got from Kyle because he dropped the older one in a pool....also thankful that our phone insurance hasn't cancelled us. 


Wednesday:

  1. Warm coffee on a cold morning. 
  2. I had my 6 week post delivery check up and everything is great! 
  3. We had Ina's parent teacher conference, and her teachers had nothing but great things to say about her. They said that she doing great both academically and socially. She is their "mamma/teacher" and she takes other kids "under her wing." We are so proud of her. 

I checked out the book Dinner: A Love Story from the library and absolutely love the recipes and the stories in this book. I also love how Jenny has a "dinner diary" where she has written down what she has eaten for many many years in an effort to not forget a meal so soon after it was eaten. Here are some we made this week:

Breaded vinegary pork chops with sautéed cabbage, roasted green beans, and sliced tomatoes. This meal was amazing. My mother-in-law literally didn't believe me, like thought I was joking, when I told her I was frying pork chops for dinner, and I have to admit that frying isn't a cooking method I typically use. However, there has to be an exception for these things, and if you keep the side dishes on the lighter side, I see no problem in it every once in a while.

Grilled Chicken Mediterranean Plate: I cheated and bought the pre-grilled chicken strips at Aldi, along with the pita bread, pre-made hummus, and crumbled feta. While the chicken was heating up in the oven, I chopped a cucumber, some tomatoes, and some olives, and 15 minutes later dinner was served. This was a winner because everyone in the family ate something and it took so little time. Once I go back to work, I can see this meal happening on the regular.

Pork Shoulder Ragu. I put this in the oven in the morning before church and lunch was ready when we got home. Dan chopped up an "empty the fridge" salad and I made these spicy icebox Mexican chocolate cookies served with ice cream for dessert. Both of those recipes will be on repeat for entertaining at our house because almost all of the work is done hours before any guests arrive. Oh, and they are both amazing.

Porcupine meatballs with roasted broccoli and cauliflower: I liked the concept, but the sauce in this recipe was a little too sweet for me. I doubt I would make it again, but if you like sweet meatloaf, you would love these. Also, I have to admit that I found a lot of joy in picking Ina up to see the "porcupines" in the pan.

Chicken Pizza with roasted brussels sprouts: Absolutely fantastic. I did all the prep work, including breading and cooking the chicken, while Ina was at school and the younger girls were napping, so that all I had to do was pop a few dishes in the oven 15 minutes before dinner. 

I hope you have a fantastic end to your week!

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Happenings from this Week

Hello!


I have neglected writing down what I am thankful for, which is changing TODAY. Until then, here are a few things I remember from the week that didn't involve changing diapers.

Thursday:

Our parents as teachers program had a story time walk around the lake, which we weren't planning on attending. However, Dan called to say that he would be home late from work, so I made the very fast decision to quickly prep dinner and load the girls and the stroller up in the car. The set up was so cute and fun and while the girls might not have entirely followed the story, we still got out of the house.


I am also incredibly thankful that the berries Cora found on a bush and shoved in her mouth while I was reading a page to Ina weren't incredibly poisonous.

Friday:

Our church had a party for all the people who serve, also known as The Dream Team. We ate great BBQ, danced with the girls to the always awesome and sometimes funny worship music, laughed at the hilarious jokes, and Dan wrangled the older girls while Mira and I snuck off to the nursing mothers room during the inspirational sermon.

Ina keeps on asking when the next "church party" is.

Saturday:


The girls and I met my sister and a friend and their kids at a new to us pumpkin patch. Almost as soon as we arrived I saw one of my very good friends from early college. I was so excited to see her I practically picked her up when we hugged. I chatted her ear off for a good part of the morning, while relying on my village to help me watch the bigger girls.


The girls walked through the pumpkins, painted pumpkins, did pumpkin word searches (Ina's favorite part), rode the little trains cars, went through the corn maze, played in the corn (Cora's favorite part), and went down a huge slide approximately 30 times. Cora couldn't go by herself, so between the two of us we went down pretty quickly and even caught some air a few times.


As soon as we skidded to a stop Cora would hop off my lap and squeal, "Again Mom! Again!" and already be at the bottom of the stairs before I could get up to tell her that this time really was the last time. 

After the pumpkin patch I bravely (stupidly?) took all three girls to Aldi by myself without feeding them lunch during nap time. As soon as we walked in a immediately grabbed a bag of goldfish crackers for them to munch on while I shopped and a box of red wine for me to console myself with then we got home.


I won't go through the horrible details, but I will say I earned that cart full of groceries.

Sunday:


Our Sunday routines are pretty set in stone: church, lunch/nap, and then small group. To note, Mira slept all the way through church and we saw 4 baptisms! Yay Jesus! Granny made us dinner, so after small group all we had to do was load up the girls and head over to her house. No cooking, no dishes. It was pretty nice.

Oh also, Mira took her first bottle, no problem. Dan gave it to her, with both of them laying down. It was pretty cute.

Monday:

I finally ordered a carseat attachment for my double BOB. The big girls took turns walking or riding the one mile to the park and it was so nice to get out of the house and shake out my legs.


Tuesday:

Dan was sick. How, just how, do single moms do it?

Wednesday:

The only thing that was incredibly memorable was the amazing dinner we had - spiced shrimp with yogurt, naan (from Aldi), and a tomato cucumber salad. I was secretly thankful that the girls don't love shrimp, because Dan and I had to fight over the last of them. This combo will be repeated very, very soon.

A few other recipes we have tried lately:

Cabbage, sausage, and potato soup: this was great on a cold day. I used onions instead of leeks and put everything in the slow cooker so we came home from church to a delicious dinner.

Sullivan Street Bread: I made bread! From flour, yeast, and water. It felt like magic.

Pumpkin mac and cheese with roasted vegetables: this was just okay...but the roasted cauliflower (our CSA delivered a beautiful yellow cauliflower) was my absolute favorite part. I forgot about how delicious that is!



Pizza pinwheels: I know what is on our super bowl menu!

Life Changing Soft Scrambled Eggs - my daily breakfast served with roasted sweet potatoes. 

I hope you have a good end to your week and weekend! 

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Life Update

Good morning!


I am so excited to report that after a month of the three kid/newborn life, we are all alive and well. I daresay, even, that we have a pretty good little routine down, and everyone knows what to expect in the mornings, afternoons, and evenings. This of course means that Mira will soon change everything she does in the next few days, requiring us to start all over again.


There were some hard days in there...too many cries, too many "Mommy!"s, too many demands, too many expectations, with not enough hands, not enough time, and not enough patience. After a lot of deep breaths, an extreme lowering of my expectations, an increase in screen time, limiting the number of times Ina can say, "mom," and a few attitude adjustments on my part, things are getting easier. Still hard, but easier.


The days all seem to run together, but I have made it a point to write down things we have done in my planner. A few things of note:

We started small group again, which is so, so, good for my soul. I love having our house full of my friends and their kids as we study The Word together.

We continue to have visitors- my cousins from Texas came over for the day, my grandmas have each visited, and we have had friends bring dinner...

Speaking of dinner, the helpful meals keep coming in - Danielle and her family brought over dinner and stayed to enjoy eating it with us, as well as our friends The Nashes. My mom also brought over a roast and veggies one morning, and all I had to do was pop it in the oven. I am also really enjoying my time back in the kitchen (see below for a few recipes we have made lately.)


Grandma Frankie took the big girls to the pumpkin patch when Ina had the day off school (bless that woman's heart). They loved every second. Cora kept on telling me how she road a "porsey" (a combo of pony and horsey) and when I changed her diaper, there were a few stray corn kernels from the corn pit stuck to her butt - a sure sign of a good time.


Last Saturday a combination of my frugality and a need to get out of the house motivated me to load up all three girls by myself and drive the 25 minutes to Costco (we needed allergy medicine) and Aldi (we needed to use the $5 off coupon...which...I forgot to use). Surprisingly, the trip was an overall success. We scored a Halloween costume for Ina, ate pizza at Costco's food court, and came home with an assortment of random items from Aldi that would fit in the cart around Mira's carseat. The only snags were Cora spilling her drink and Mira having a blowout, neither one of which were unexpected.

Either Dan or I (or both of us) have played at least one game of Uno with Ina per day. She is obsessed and my card game loving heart couldn't be more pleased.


I have started reading a few books. I just finished Outlander (Whoa, so addicting. I have the next book waiting for me at the library, but am waiting to pick it up in the interest of productivity) and am half way through Dinner: A Love Story (I am absolutely smitten).

Recipes I have cooked:


I hope you have a fantastic end to your week! <3

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Thankful

Good morning! How are things going on your side of the internet?

We are trucking along over here. As of last Friday, Mira was still 5 oz. short of her birth weight and we have a strict target of meeting it by tomorrow, which means that if she so much as whimpers or opens her mouth,  I feed her. This has translated to me spending the majority of my time sitting down with her and the other girls having to deal with it.


I present, the typical Cora look.

This has been fine, for the most part, but we have had a few rough moments, as you will see below. Also, Mira projectile pooped on me yesterday. Good times. But, along with the rough moments are some really, really good ones, when I am hit with the blessing of adding another soul to our family.

We have also continued to be spoiled with the most delicious food. So much, in fact, that out of habit Ina has started asking, "Who's bringing dinner over tonight?"

There are always things to be thankful for:

Thursday:


  1. My grandparents and cousin stopped by with lunch and arms ready for baby holding. I just love seeing my kids with my grandparents.
  2. Ina had a bike-a-thon at school that she was oh so excited about. I am thankful I (barely) remembered to submit the money and form in time. 
  3. Our friend Jalisa brought over an amazing dinner of pork roast, roasted potatoes, and purple cabbage.  We are so blessed.

Friday:

  1. The fact that pink recycling bins exist (full story here). 
  2. Grandma Frankie and Papa Dan took the girls to a pumpkin patch, from which they returned home dirty and tired with three little pumpkins...perfection.
  3. My dad brought ultimate nachos over for dinner (so good!) and we rounded the night off by watching Heavy Weights...while eating nachos...(ha!). 
Saturday:



  1. I started my morning out with a little quiet time and coffee and one by one the girls made their way to my lap. The perfect start to the weekend. <3
  2. The dwindling of burn piles - such a quick way to feel some accomplishment!
  3. My brother and his family brought over delicious dinner, and even joined Dan and Ina for a late season swim!
Sunday:
  1. Our church recently remodeled and added in a nursing mother's room! Mira lasted through the first two songs and about 5 minutes of the sermon before she decided she wasn't having it, so we made our way to the nursing mother's room where there was a TV/speaker with the sermon, dim lighting, a changing table stocked with wipes and diapers, and two incredibly comfortable rockers. I have to admit it was difficult to leave once she was done eating. 
  2. My friend Liz volunteered to take newborn pictures of Mira, which doesn't sound all that complicated, but then you throw my family in the mix and you get the below photos. Bless her heart for her patience with my family. I think there might be a few good ones of Mira by herself, which I am excited about.
  3. Our friends brought us the most delicious fajitas for dinner. Like, the best I have ever had. Next time we are going to their house instead of a restaurant.


Monday:
  1. A slow morning watching Netflix and cuddling. 
  2. Dan came home early from work, which I am thankful for, but because he put a nail through his thumb...like all the way through. He says it is healing well, which I have to take his word for, because looking at stuff like that makes me all kinds of squeamish.
  3. We successfully put the cover on the pool! Closing the pool down has been on my to-do list for a few weeks now and I am so happy to have that checked off. 
Tuesday:

  1. Library story time went much, much better this week (in that we left without hysterics). Mira slept through all of it. I even made a new mama friend. 
  2. My friend Aubrey and her girls stopped by to meet Mira and brought new mom/baby essentials (diapers, wipes, and wine). I wanted to kiss her whole face. We enjoyed catching up while our girls played/fought over every toy in the playroom. 
  3. My first night of making dinner after Mira was born (we were wonderfully spoiled for a few weeks!), went OK, as in, we survived. There was a moment when Dan was fixing something at his mom's house, Mira was screaming and acting like she was hungry even though she had nursed for the past hour, Ina was freaking out because her aqua beads weren't turning out perfectly, and Cora wanted me to hold her while also asking for chicken nuggets even though she had asked for a banana and a bowl of cereal, both of which I gave her and she did not eat, that I was afraid I might actually lose what little control/patience/sanity I had remaining, but soon Dan walked in and helped me get the food to the table and once everyone wasn't as hungry or frantic, we enjoyed some time around the table. The dinner wasn't particularly fancy and I made most of it while Ina was at preschool (garlic lover's chicken, roasted beets, baked potatoes, and cucumber/tomato/onion salad), but it felt good to be in the kitchen again. 
Wednesday:
  1. Super hero muffins. They are so, so delicious, especially if you replace the raisins with chocolate chips. 
  2. My two week post-partum check up went great! I loved getting to see Jeane again and she told me I am healing as if I never gave birth. (I think she says that to all the mamas, but it was still good to hear!) Granny watched the older girls while I was at my appointment, and Mira and I had 20 minutes to stop into Old Navy just to walk around and see all the pretty clothes that might one day fit me again. 
  3. Watching Dan read to all three girls in bed, Mira tucked in his arm with Ina and Cora's heads snuggled in closing on either side of his. Just the sweetest.
Have a good end to your week! <3 
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