Saturday, August 27, 2011

Shower Finished

So the shower is finished.  Woo Hoo!!  And we are moving right along . . . chug a chug chug a chug footloose and fancy free.  Sorry I always follow up that statement with those words, sung of course even only in my head sometimes.  What can I say I am child of the 80's and the muppets just rock.

Okay, back on track!  So the other night Scott pulled out our vanity & is working on finishing the plumbing right now.  This weekend is pretty open for us right now and I am hoping to get another big chunk of work finished.  If we could just get the big stuff completed, the rest I can work on a little here and a little there.

I am ready to have my small humble master bath back.  It's hard to share one toilet with 3 small children, one whom is only 6 months potty trained and still can't hold it.  The other morning I was showering while Scott was emptying the trash and Julia was going to the potty.  Wow!!  There is nothing like family togetherness.  I know this statement would mortify her in a few years.

Monday, August 22, 2011

My Baby

Julia-only minutes old
It seems strange to me that this was actually 5 years ago.  She is my first, the one who made me a Mommy.  Some days I thought would never end & some I didn't want to.  As a very colicky baby I held her very close for the better part of the first 3-4 months of her life and now, tomorrow, I must let her move on to this exciting new chapter in her young life.  I know that to some starting Kindergarten may seem like "not that big of a deal" in the grand scheme of things, but to this stay-at-home mommy it's the end of a very special chapter in both of our lives.  I have been blessed in that I have been able to stay home with my children.  Staying home has its up & downs, but one of the greatest perks is the freedom.

Julia's First Haircut
 Then comes Kindergarten, and a certain level of that freedom is removed.  This is precisely why I say the end of the chapter.  However, it is also the beginning.  It's the beginning of a very exciting time in a child's life, the opportunity to begin growing, learning, sharing, developing and maturing into the woman she will one day become.

I love you bunches my sweet Julia & I know that you will love school and excel.  Thank you for five wonderful years of being nothing more than my sweet little girl.  Your Daddy and I now send you one little step into the big world knowing that God will protect and guide you, forever lighting your path with His love.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Moving Forward

So today is the day we move forward on our bathroom remodel.  Scott has been slowing tearing it up here and there in his spare time & we bought all the materials to finish (except the beadboard).

*shower tile . . . check
*shower floor tile . . . check
*shower accent tile . . . check
*floor tile . . . check
*precut marble counter top . . . check
*undermount sink . . . check
*shower & sink fixtures . . . check

So, we are good to move forward today.  Now Scott doesn't shy away from much but he has been really worried about pouring a new shower pan.  So we decided to have someone do it for us instead.  They will be here in a little while and we are just going to have them tile the whole shower while they are here.  So hopefully by the end of the day today, I will have my shower back.  Woo Hoo!!

Now I realized that I never came back and loaded pictures of our before & during demo so I have included a few here.  

This is where it all started with the tiles falling into the wall.

Here we are "back to the studs".

This is my fabric choice.  I just love this!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Another one bites the dust

Last week Julia lost another tooth.  We were spending the night at my Mom & Dad's house and it was only slightly loose.  However, just like her first one, the permanent tooth was already coming in behind it.  So, about an hour after she and Sean had been in bed they came running into the living room to tell us there was blood.  She went and pulled this one, just like the last.  This time, though, she said "this one hurt a little and there was a lot more blood".

I am pretty impressed by this, since she is my one with almost no pain tolerance.  I guess she does, though, if it's important enough.  She was also not a bit bothered by all the blood, and there was quite a bit of it.

She was still thrilled with the gold dollar the tooth fairy brought her!  Whew!!  My baby is getting so big!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Delicious Banana Cupcakes

In my last post I referenced a cake recipe, so I figured that while I am in recipe sharing mode I would post this one as well.  However, I do have to make a disclaimer again.  I usually always make cakes homemade.  Now I don't say that in a haughty way, but I have never taken that particular shortcut.  My reason for this has been that I think cake is such an easy thing to make and it tastes better than using a box (however, I do think that box cakes make good cakes).  Once again, though, as a mother of 3 small children I am beginning to take every shortcut that I can in order to make my life easier.  This recipe came out of my needing to make Laura a cake for her 2nd birthday and having only one day in which to make, frost & decorate it.  I had a box cake mix on hand so I punted and this was my result.

Banana Cupcakes
1 white cake mix
1/2 c oil
1/2 c water (plus a bit extra if batter is too thick)
4 eggs
3 very ripe bananas, mashed*
1 sm box vanilla instant pudding

Mix & bake according to package directions.  Batter will be thick.

I frosted with a cream cheese frosting.  They were super moist and delicious!

*I always have 4-5 overripe bananas in my freezer and this is what I used.  They are very runny, so don't use regular bananas because I think the cake would turn out too dry.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Chicken Enchiladas=Yummy!! :-)

I must preface this post with a disclaimer.  I am not an inventive cook, never have been.  I am a recipe-followin' fool.  In fact, I am very OCD about measuring everything to the point of ridiculousness.  In the past couple of years, though, I have discovered that as a busy mom I have to be able to punt.  I am also finally confident in my cooking/baking knowledge & abilities.  The other day I actually made up a new cake recipe (using a box mix as my base) and it was delish.  I was so thrilled.  So, you can see why I get slightly excited when I create something yummy.  I made these enchiladas yesterday, with no recipe & no measuring save the "palm of my hand" method.

Sorry for no pictures, but I am new at this blogging thing.  Take my word for it though, they looked fabulous!! 

Chicken Enchiladas
1 package boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 med. onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 palmfuls cumin, coriander & mexican oregano
2 pinches cayenne (or more if you like it more spicy, I was making it for my kids who won't eat spicy)
1 can cream corn
1 lime
1 handful chopped cilantro, roughly chopped
1 lrg. can green chili sauce
1 generous spoonful cream cheese (could use sour cream, but this was all I had on hand)
shredded cheese (your choice on what kind)
18-20 corn tortillas (I simply prefer corn for enchiladas)

Salt & pepper chicken then cook over med. high heat in skillet with a small amount of canola oil.  Remove chicken to cool, then cut into bite size pieces.  In the same skillet (don't clean out & add a touch more oil, if necessary) saute onion & garlic.  Add green chilis, spices, corn & chicken.  Cook mixture 5-10 minutes on med heat until warm & flavors are set.  Remove from heat & stir in juice from lime and cilantro.  

Warm green chili sauce in saucepan.  Whisk in cream cheese until incorporated.

Warm tortillas in microwave.  Dip each in sauce (you don't want it dripping with sauce, just a little wet). Fill with 2-3 tsp. of chicken mixture & roll tightly being careful not to tear tortilla.  Place seam side down in greased baking dish.  *Repeat with all tortillas and fill pan tightly with enchiladas.  Pour remaining sauce over enchiladas & top with as much cheese as you like.  Cover with foil & bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.  Remove foil and continue baking for additional 5-10 minutes until nice & bubbly.  

*This will probably fill a 13x9 pan, but I split it up into 3 smaller ones.  I covered with plastic wrap and then foil and placed in freezer.  I would thaw overnight in frig. and then follow baking directions.  

Enjoy!! :-)

Friday, August 5, 2011

Running, running & more running

About a year ago, I tried to start up a running club, of sorts.  I just wanted some of my friends to run with me in the mornings in order to help motivate me.  However, it just didn't really go over well (oddly enough I was able to start up a softball team instead, but that's for another post).  It's really hard for working moms & stay-at-home moms to find time to exercise.  So I abandoned the idea and ran sporadically for the past year.  Recently, though (due mostly to my sudden & unexplainable weight gain) I made myself start getting up early in the morning to run.  I have been using the coolest app on my phone called RunKeeper.  It gives me all the stats on my running and allows me to just "head out" and run wherever I feel like running.

Next thing I know I have 3 other friends using the same app while they run.  And presto, change-o I have a running group.  We each run on our own, but post our workout to facebook.  I must admit that every morning I log in to see what my buddies have done for the day.  I am motivated by their commitment & guilted as well (that is my own bag of worms, though).  So, anyway thanks to my running friends!!  

Now if this pesky weight would just go away!!