Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Recipes

I know moms are always looking for new recipes to try out at home.  Here are a few that I have found that can be cooked with all natural/organic foods and are super tasty.  Time to bust the myth that if it tastes good, it must be bad for you!

CHICKEN PASTA WITH SPINACH AND SUN DRIED TOMATOES
http://13recipes4me.blogspot.com/2008/01/chicken-pasta-wspinach-sundried.html

TURKEY BURGERS
http://allrecipes.com//Recipe/seasoned-turkey-burgers/Detail.aspx

ROASTED RED PEPPER CREAM SAUCE
http://allrecipes.com//Recipe/roasted-red-pepper-cream-sauce/Detail.aspx

PORKCHOPS (the one we used in the previous post)
http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=201848

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Dinner!!

So..I haven't kept up with providing you with all the details of the switch to all natural foods.  *bad Charity*  So I've got something special for you tonight!  Dinner by picture! 

I discovered something absolutely fantastic.  Butternut squash!



Actually, my sister in law Wendy introduced me to butternut squash at Thanksgiving with this incredible POTATO-BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND GRUYERE GRATIN.  I've been wanting to make it ever since, but Gruyere is rather pricey!  I decided I wanted to introduce butternut squash into our diet somehow, so when we went to the Farmer's Market on Saturday, I picked a couple up.

I found a recipe for Butternut Squash Fries.  I figured if it looked like a fry, maybe my family would eat it.  So I started hacking away.  I learned I am inept at cutting squash.



I decided to just do one of the two squash(es?) after struggling with the one for so long.  Not pretty.  I'm not getting any awards for presentation, but we have fries!



Sorta.  Ok.  Into the oven we go.  We may have justed wasted a dollar.  In the meantime, I worked on cooking up the porkchops.  Once those were going, I prepared fresh green beans, one of our new recent favorites.  I've been meaning to advertise these Ziplock steam bags.  They make steaming veggies so quick and easy and they taste delicious!!



They even come with complete instructions on the bag!



By this time, the fries were done:




They don't look very good (again, no points for presentation!) but they were delicious!  Sweet and salty.  Don't believe me?  Check out the faces of these two picky eaters!







Final Product:


YUM-O!!

Lead Me

For those of you who haven't heard this song yet, I highly recommend taking a few minutes to listen to it. I can't tell you how many times I have listened to it, but I still cry everytime.


Uh-huh

video

Taking a Poll

My husband is aboard the "Wrong Train" this week (blog to come) and since I have already proven him wrong in one area, I would like to do that once again by posting a poll for your opinions!

I have been searching for a quilt/comforter/ blanket for Eric's bed that could grow with him.  I'm very anti-character sheets and blankets, though if either boy expressed a sincere interest in some, I would cave.  I was wanting something with blues and browns in it, possibly greens.  Stripes was a huge plus.

This would have been ideal:


However...we don't have hundreds of dollars to spend.  So I kept my eye out.  I finally found a reasonably priced quilt at Target that I thought would work perfectly but it was still more than I was willing to pay.  So I waited.  When it went on clearance and I got $10 off, I snagged it up.  I think it's just perfect!


John says it's a GIRL blanket.  So now I'm posting it here.  How girly does this blanket look to you?  I, personally, would not use it in a girl's room.  I think the colors and the stripes are perfect for a little boy and I think it will be great inspiration for the rest of his room when we eventually get a house.  So now you must vote.  Who is right?

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Finally!!

I had a message on my blog telling me that I would be losing my background, so I was forced to come up with a new one, hence all the changes.  I've been thouroughly distraught about the look of the page.  It just didn't reflect me and I didn't like that.  But now I've got the final product up and I like it better than what I had originally!  It makes me smile inside to look at it and will hopefully inspire some more blogs.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Why I Love Having Kids and Why You Should Have Some Too

I don't know about the rest of you, but Sundays seem extra long and busy around our household.  We try hard to prepare for everything on Saturday night to make Sunday easier.  I was excited about teaching Children's Church today, as I had an awesome lesson planned on faith.  I was reminded, once again, of why I am thankful I don't have girls - but that is another blog.  All of the children were exceptionally well behaved and this Sunday seemed to be going by smoothly.

I have been on a cooking strike for the past few days, so we decided to go to Applebee's for lunch.  This was going to be our last time going out, because we are craving the healthy lifestyle we recently abandoned (out of laziness).  The boys were wound up and Matthew enjoyed letting the whole restaurant know he was there.  Eric did fairly well, though, so our attention was focused on keeping Matthew as best we could.  We ate quickly to get the boys out of there as quickly as possible.  It was nap time!!  John began to get stressed with Matthew's activity and asked me to take the boys out of the restaurant while he boxed up our meals and paid.

I took them out and then remembered I had left my keys on the table.  I figured John would bring them out so I waited.  He came out and saw us standing there.  I asked him if he had the keys.  He said no and I told him I had left them on the table.  He seemed to take an unusually long time and I began to wonder if they had fallen off the table.  He came back out to inform me that there were no keys on the table and he sent me in to look for them. Slightly furstrated at my husband's inability to see things that are in plain view, I left the kids with him to go retrieve the keys.  No keys.  I checked the seats.  No keys.  I checked the floor.  No keys.  The waitress came over and asked if I had lost something.  I told her I was looking for our keys.  We pulled the table out.  We pulled the benches out.  No keys.  My worst fear - they had been thrown away. 

Things had started to pick up at Applebee's with the Sunday crowd, so she told me she would look through the trash, though she had not seen them and swore she had not picked them up.  Impossible.  They were RIGHT there on the table.  Now, it was my fault, because I had laid the keys close to the pile of trash and dishes and I felt badly about that, but she should have seen the keys before throwing them out!  So I waited, wondering what kind of nasty food would be embedded in my keys.  She came back with a concerned look on her face.  She didn't find any keys.  Now I started to get frustrated.  We searched the booth again.  A customer was asked to stand so her booth could be moved.  NO keys.  I had no pockets.  So  I didn't have
them.  John checked his pockets.  He didn't have them.  I KNOW I brought them in with me because I locked the van from inside Applebee's.  They were RIGHT on the table.  I insisted that the waitress must have thrown them out and to please check again.  Her frustration and agitation was starting to show but she said she would look again.  I went and told John I think they had been thrown out and they were searching for them.  John asked that I take a child with me so  that he didn't have to deal with both.  I brought Eric along with me.  They went through the trash THREE times before the manager came out and said, "I am sorry, but we can't find your keys.  Give me your number and I will call you if we find them."  I was near tears.  We didn't have a spare key.  The boys' carseats were locked in the van, so we coudln't just call somebody to come get us.  I didn't know what to do.  I went outside to tell John and he said, "They HAD to have been thrown away.  We can NOT leave until we get those keys.  Go get them!"

I went back in and asked if they would be willing to let ME go through the trash myself.  Wanting desperately for me to leave, they obliged.  So Eric and I headed to the back of the restaurant to dig through trash.  They set me up in the back with 2 bags of trash - the ONLY two that they could have been dumped in.  Once again they insisted that the keys were not in the trash.  I apologized but insisted I was convinced that they were.  I was told there was no need to apologize - I was bringing this on myself.  As I started to go through it piece by piece, one of the workers offered assistance by saying, "Here - it's easier if you spread it out like this," and she spread the trash out within the bag.  I said, "I will go through it piece by piece."  She said, "Ok.  You want another bag?  I'll get you another bag!"  And she brought me a clean trash bag so i could go through piece by piece.  I was  given gloves, so I bravely went through EVERY napkin, EVERY cup, EVERY wadded up piece of foil.  Amused with me and amazed that I was this stubborn, one of the workers started talking to Eric.  "Do you have mommy's keys?  Are they in your pocket?"  Wouldn't that be nice!  If it were that simple, he would have given them to me an HOUR ago!  Besides that, I had not seen him playing with them.  As I removed every large piece of trash and was getting down to only the food, I started praying.  God PLEASE help me find these keys!  Where could they be?  I knew I was going to come across them in the trash, but I just wasn't finding them and I wanted to find them sooner than later.  Mostly to say "See, I told you so!"  After going through both bags, there were no keys.  It was all I could do to keep from bursting into tears.  I stood up, took the gloves off and just thought for a moment, all the while praying that God would put the keys in my hand.  I hoped that somebody would walk in and tell me that they found them on the floor somewhere in Applebee's.  No such luck. 

I wasn't ready to face John.  I didn't know what else to do.  What else could I do?  I couldn't make them magically appear.  We were stuck at Applebee's for the rest of our lives!  I looked at Eric who had been watching me dig through the trash.  "Baby, do you have mommy's keys?"  "No." He patted his pockets and shook his head. 

This is how I know God answers prayers. 

Eric said no.  He patted his pockets and there was no sound.  I STILL reached into the first pocket.  There was something about the fact that he patted his pockets that seemed strange.  Why would he pat his pockets when I asked him for my keys?  Still no keys.  Of course not.  I  reached into the second pocket.  There was something there!  I pulled it out.  My keys!!!!!

Feeling a rush of relief, frustration, anger, exhaustion, thankfulness, and embarassment, I headed out the door to give John the keys to put the boys in the van while I returned to express my sincerest apologies to the Applebee's staff.  We made it home after all.

The Applebee's staff has a story for the books now.

We are never eating out again.

I am making a copy of the van key THIS week.








Oh.  And I have an adorable little 3 year old boy for sale.