Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Ramblings of a pregnant lady.. and a basement guest

(**Update about the GUEST is below**)
I'm feeling under the weather today. Blah. Allergies. I don't know why they haven't bothered me all spring and now all of a sudden they decide to make me all stuffy! Whatever is bloomin' right now is not my friend! Luke has had a runny nose too but that's pretty normal around here. I'm afraid he's inherited my allergies. Needless to say I've felt pretty worthless today because all I've wanted to do was lay around.

We did get some work done this weekend. We cleaned out Eli's room for the most part and got out the swing. I still need to wash all of the padding/etc on it and get out the bouncer. I've washed a few of his little outfits and I've also went through Luke's things to see what I can use. Surprisingly, Luke does not have ANY newborn or 0-3 months stuff. I guess I didn't keep it. I knew we would be planning more kids but most of what he wore in the very beginning I didn't keep. They were just onesies mainly. He was a big boy so he didn't wear those sizes long. All of the stuff that I kept start in the 3-6 month size range. I've picked out a few little things for Eli but I'm not going to go overboard considering I didn't keep much of Luke's newborn clothing. For the first 2 months you're pretty much home most of the time.. so a few comfy onesies is all you need.

So, I actually feel a little more ready for Eli than I did. The rest of my list that needs to be done includes:

buy extenders for the cosleeper
buy crib
buy changing table
make Luke's big brother box for the hospital
find swaddling blankets (our lifesaver with Luke)
pick up: nursing pads, lanolin, a few paci's, bottles, infant Tylenol (since Luke uses children's now), Mylicon drops, a few 'things' for the hospital that I know I will need
pick out bedding

I'm having a diapers and wipes shower at church so hopefully that will be covered. I'm also having a shower at my mom's and I'll probably get some things there that I know I need since it's mostly family and I can request certain things. I know that he'll be in our room in the cosleeper for a while so really the crib can wait until the last minute. I plan on buying some kind of bedding but I'm going way less expensive this time. I'm going to pick up a few paci's and just save the receipts. Hopefully he will like the first one we try... unlike Luke who didn't like any until we got to the 4th or 5th one. Monogramming is super cute but after looking through Luke's things, I barely have any burp clothes that I can use because all of the nice ones (that I used in public and didn't stain) have his name or initials on them! So, Eli will need some of his own. It's the same with Luke's diaper bags. I think I only have one diaper bag that doesn't have Luke's name on it. My little Eli deserves some things of his own though! Most of these things I will get here and there, but I know it will take me the entire 13 weeks that I have left to get them all. Yes, that is only 3 months left... three months from tomorrow!

Ok, I had to take a break because my husband came and got me to tell me that something was in the basement. He heard a commotion outside which included dogs barking and growling and some strange noises... well this is what was making the strange noises:

So, how do you get an armadillo out of the basement?.. because as of right now, this thing is still in there. As you can see, R's attempts at hosing it down and throwing things at it did not work.

So... I think it's time to go to bed....

Update: After failed attempts of hosing it out, throwing ink pens/other random objects, and sweeping it out with a large push broom, we decided to just hope that he (or she, who knows??) would just mosey on out... and he/she did. It was gone this morning. How crazy is that though?? Life here in the parsonage is so exciting....

Monday, May 26, 2008

Menu Plan Monday- May 26

This week is an easy week of meals. I'm trying to avoid any cooking in the oven. The only heat will be stove top!

There are 3 items on the menu using fresh basil because I am growing a basil plant and it is getting huge! I've used it already in spaghetti when I first got it. It has been really easy to grow.

Tonight: (Leftovers from yesterday) Hamburgers/Hot dogs, Baked Potatoes & Rocky Road Brownies!

The rest of the week:
  • Teriyaki Drumsticks, Green Beans, Honey Glazed Carrots (didn't have last week- again)
  • Grilled Cheese, Tomato Soup
  • Chicken Spaghetti (w/ fresh basil), Salad
  • Meatball Subs, Basil Dill Coleslaw
  • Parmesan and Basil Chicken Salad on rolls, Cranberry Broccoli Salad (using a recipe and tweaking it a bit, I'll let you know how it turns out)

One weeknight is usually leftovers (probably the night after the chicken spaghetti, since it makes a lot).

- Our pantry is stocked with cereal and oatmeal that I've been 'collecting', fruit
Lunch- Leftovers, sandwiches, chicken nuggets (Luke), carrot sticks, fruit
Snacks- Popcorn, yogurt, raisins, teddy grahams (for Luke), hummus and pita chips (for me), fruit

I haven't been shopping yet since it's a holiday, so I'm not sure what fruit I will be buying (except for bananas which we always have). I usually buy what's on sale and what looks good so it just depends.

Happy Memorial Day!! I am so thankful to all who have served our country faithfully and given their lives for our freedom. How blessed are we to live in a free country! Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

A little update ~ Pregnancy and Luke

Update- I got a more than just a 'little sun' on my shoulders. They are RED. I'm so mad too! I'm usually so good about putting on sunscreen. I guess I just didn't think we we're out there that long! BLAH! Note to self: Apply sunscreen to yourself when you apply it to Luke.

I hear a beeping noise... it's my computer... what in the world does that mean??? Ok, it stopped.

Back to regular programming....

I realized that I didn't give a pregnancy update after my last appointment. I guess mainly because it was just a regular appointment, plus I was only there 35 minutes (waiting time included)!! That was a first! So, I heard the heartbeat again and she asked me about movement! This little one loves to wiggle! Late afternoon and evening is his most active time. I feel him a lot first thing in the morning before I get out of bed too. He is my wake up call telling me it's time for a glass of OJ! She said I was measuring a little bit ahead but not by much. I did gain some weight... more than I would have liked but she wasn't concerned at all. She said I was due some weight gain since I didn't gain any the month before. According to her charts I've gained 14 lbs total and I was 24 weeks at the time of my appointment (BTW, I'm 25 weeks and 5 days today!!). I'm feeling pretty good about that though, it's less than what I gained with Luke. I have been trying to be careful with my sweets though and late night snacking since I did gain a lot of weight with Luke towards the end. 100 calorie packs of popcorn are a lifesaver! :) I've been trying to walk too. I only got in 2 days last week but I'm going to try to get in 4 this week. My Dr said that I was an easy patient! I'm just so thankful that everything is going so well! It's such a blessing to have a fairly easy pregnancy and healthy baby! My next apt is June 10th and I have my glucose test! Blah! Luckily my Dr does allow you to eat breakfast, just nothing sugary so at least I won't be starving to death! Drinking that nasty stuff is bad enough! I'm also having a 4D sonogram on the 19th and I can't wait for that. Please help me in praying that Eli has turned head down! I know that many times they don't turn until the last minute but it would be nice if he decided to turn earlier! This will just give me some comfort since we're also praying for a successful VBAC!

Luke and I played outside today. Well, he played and I walked for about 30 minutes around the driveway! Then I sat in the sun and read while he played some more! It was nice and breezy! I even got a little sun on my shoulders. I'm not a big sun worshipper (anymore) but a little color is nice. Luke on the other hand was sprayed down with SPF 50 before we went out the door! That little boy LOVES to be outside. He would stay out all day if I let him. His favorite thing to do is push his toys around, whether it be his wagon, his car, his wheel barrel, or his big wheel (he still can't reach the peddles). He just pushes them.. no rhyme or reason.. he just pushes to push, I guess! He's growing up so fast. I can't believe that in just 2 weeks he will be TWO! Wow, it really is just 2 weeks (plus one day) away! I had to check the calendar! Yesterday he was 'helping' me fold towels. I attempted to show him how to fold wash cloths and he actually folded one right but his favorite part is to help me put them away in the closet... I wonder how long that will last? I can tell that he is starting to pretend play a little. About a month ago he got a stuffed
Mickey Mouse and he sleeps with it every night. Occasionally Mickey will come out and play with him during the day. Luke loves to push (hmm.. I'm sensing a theme here) Mickey around in his wagon and today I caught him telling Mickey it was time for bed and he went and threw him (literally) in his crib. He's also started 'reading' books to himself. He always starts out by saying, "Ok" and then goes on 'telling' the story. It's so fun to watch. He loves cars and trucks too. He knows what bulldozers and dump trucks are and will point them out if we see one. Any truck with a ladder rack on top is a firetruck. Right now he has selective learning... he knows a tractor from a bulldozer but hasn't learned any colors!!! :) It will come in time though! I am amazed at how much he is learning every day!

Ok, I must confess. It's 3:35 PM and I haven't had a shower. So, if I'm going to church (and I am) without stinking, I should get a shower before Luke gets up!

Have a fantastic day!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Menu Plan Monday - May 19

Well, I had a busy, crazy morning. In my attempt to save money, I decided to shop at Walmart and Publix. They aren't that far apart so I wasn't wasting gas. Plus I knew we'd be stopping at Chik fil a and that's right in the middle of both places. Anyways, I got most of my dry foods and non food items at WalMart, then went to Publix. I'm not sure that I really saved much money. I did notice a few items that were less expensive but I don't know yet if making 2 stops is really worth it. I'm trying to keep a price book though so maybe I'll be able to tell later on down the road whether or not it's worth my time. My most exciting moments of the day were when I purposefully picked up 2 Tropicana OJs (on sale 2 for 6$) and could not find my $1.00 off coupon.. (Grr... I could have gotten them both for 5$)... then when I got to get my check card out, it's no where to be found! I have a bad habit of laying my card in the passenger seat if we go through a drive through. So, I have to get Luke out of the cart and drag him out to the car to get it and go back to pay for my groceries! It was fun. Luckily, I buy OJ every week and they go on sale often, so if I find my coupon I'm sure I can use it again. I don't think it expires until the end of June.

So, after all of that here is my menu for the week:

Tonight: Baked Flounder w/ Lemon and Garlic, Sauteed Squash, Rice, Toasted Whole Grain Bread that the Bread Lady made me buy, it was sooo good though. (we didn't have this meal last week because we ended up eating with my parents one night so it was a roll over) Luke didn't eat one bite of his supper. Not even the bread. And now, at 7:30PM he is CRANKY, but what do I do? I've offered his supper again and he refused. It's not like he's never had any of it before. He usually loves rice and bread. He's being stubborn... because I know he's hungry. We mentioned going for a walk after supper and it's driving him crazy that we're not going. He can't go outside if he doesn't eat supper. I'm definitely not one to force a child eat everything on their plate but he hasn't had anything since 12pm. I do expect him to eat something. He didn't even have his usual snack because I had dinner ready fairly early and he slept until almost 5! Anyway, I know he's not going to starve, it's just so frustrating sometimes!

The rest of the week:

Since I mentioned the Bread Lady, I must tell you that my son now goes into Publix expecting a cookie. He literally starts chanting "cookie, cookie" a few minutes after we go through the sliding doors. I know they give the cookies out free but I always feel a little funny ushering my son over to the bread counter just so he will be noticed, thus given a cookie (all with no intention whatsoever of buying anything from the bread counter). So today, here is how it went: I walked past the counter once glancing at the bread, went around the doughnuts/bagels and stopped at the lesser priced loaves. I picked up one and actually put it in my cart. It looked good, so I got it. Well, we went by the counter again and I stopped and looked at the cakes (I needed to in order to get ideas for Luke's b'day cake anyway!). After looking through the cake book we went by the counter AGAIN, finally being noticed. So, Luke got his cookie.. and I felt so bad about all of my attempts at getting him a cookie that when the Bread Lady started telling me once again about their breads, I bought a loaf... a more expensive loaf. I put the other one back. I am pathetic.

Oh well. Like I said, the bread was good. And it's healthy. And it will be eaten. :)

Breakfast: Cereal, Oatmeal, Egg Sandwich, Waffles (Luke)

Lunch: Leftovers, Sandwiches (tuna/grilled cheese/tomato), Chicken nuggets (Luke), Salad, Fruit (cantaloupe, apples, bananas, grapes)

Snacks: Yogurt, Popcorn, Raisins, Teddy Grahams, Fruit

I'm posting this menu late, once again! Check out other menus at!

Friday, May 16, 2008


I'm feeling like maybe I need to write something that isn't food centered. :) I just can't seem to help it though, I am pregnant!

I have been at a loss for words here lately when thinking about God. It's been hard for me to even try to blog about what has been going on in my quiet, alone times with God. He is so big and so holy.. so much that I am just in awe. At church Wednesday night I felt like I just wanted to run away after the service. I just wanted to be alone and cry. Let me explain...
My hubby has been preaching through Matthew. Wed night he was in Matthew 9 (27-34 to be exact). Much of what we have been reading the past few weeks have been miracles. This message was a little different take on just a plain ol' miracle (OK, so I know there is no such thing as a plain miracle.. but you know what I'm saying!). He of course talked about the miraculous events of the 2 blind men being healed, as well as the mute man who was demon possessed. But then in verse 34, it says, 'But the Pharisees said, “He casts out demons by the ruler of the demons.'." So we looked at the question, Why do some people hear the Word, even see the Word (as the Pharisees did) but yet are not effected by it at all? Then there are others who hear the Word and are changed forever by it. The two groups both hear the exact same things but one sits unchanged and one becomes a new creature. Why? The question can be answered by Scripture.. which, by the way, is the only way to answer a question.
John 6:44 says: "No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day."
This is Jesus speaking here. The answer to the above question is simple really. God draws men to Himself. We do not come to Him on our own. It is only through His calling that we would desire to come to Him. We do not seek God. Scripture says in Romans 3:11: "There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God."
None pretty much means none. You see, if we played any part of salvation, even the seeking Him part, we could boast. No part of salvation comes from us.
Ephesians 2:8-9 says: "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast."
We cannot boast in something that we did not do. God knew that we would take any credit for salvation if we could. He made sure, through Scripture, that we would know where salvation comes from. Him and Him alone. All glory goes to God for the amazing gift of salvation.
So, do I understand it all? Absolutely not. Who does God call? Why does He call them? When does He call them? I have no idea. But it's not my place to know.
Isaiah 55:9 ~ "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts."
I'll leave the knowing everything up to God and just trust in His Word.
I can say this, I am overwhelmingly thankful for His calling on my life. I feel unworthy when I think about it all. To be called and known by a holy God... this is what makes me want to run away and hide. Why me? I can't possibly ever praise Him enough. I can't possibly bring Him the honor He deserves. I feel like Isaiah in chapter 6 when he declares, "Woe is me, I am undone!"
But the Lord has made me new, and I know that my righteousness comes only from Christ. I find comfort in that, because without Christs' righteousness, I could never come before God as acceptable. Christ makes me clean and presentable before a holy God.
The question that the Lord asks of all of us who have been truly converted is, : "Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?' " (Is 6:8)
How can we not respond as Isaiah did, saying "Here I am, Send me!". It's not our job to understand it all, but it is our job to go. How can we not obey? He is worthy of our obedience. He is so worthy.

Psalm 42:1-2 ~ As the deer pants for the water brooks, So pants my soul for You, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God?

Monday, May 12, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

Grrrr... this is my 3rd attempt at writing and posting this!

Simple. Simple. Simple.

That is the theme for this weeks menu! I had to be really frugal this week too because we've eaten out so much in the past 2 weeks (for birthday's and Mother's Day). So, here is the plan:

  • Hotdogs (all beef, Hebrew National kind), Mac & Cheese, Corn on the Cob

  • Smoked Pork Chops, Fried Potatoes & Onions, Fruit Salad (strawberries, bananas, blueberries in a little lemon juice)

  • Grilled Cheese & Tomato Soup, Cucumber Salad (which consists of sliced cucumber & Italian dressing)

  • Flounder Filet's (baked w/ a little olive oil, garlic and lemon juice), Sauteed Squash & Onions, Green Beans

  • Spaghetti, Salad, Breadsticks

Last week recipe reviews: The chicken teriyaki drumsticks were really good. I think R really liked them. The only thing I plan on changing when I make them again (and I will) will be that I'll lower the cooking temp and increase the cooking time. 450 degrees was just too high and the skin cooked faster than I wanted it too. I think lowering it to about 400 until they are cooked through and then bumping it up for the last few minutes to crisp up the skin is a better way to go. The honeyed carrots were great and I know they will be on future menus. They were a nice change for a side dish. I always seem to get stuck in a rut for side dishes!

I got a really good deal on the hotdogs for this week, which we rarely eat. I actually don't think we've ever had them here at home. We usually only have them when we go to a cook out. Luke has never eaten a hotdog. I have been craving one though! :) I think because they are Hebrew National, all beef, made from the um.. upper part of the cow, I feel a lot better about feeding them to my family. Oh and I bought the lower fat variety!
And since most of my menu was in my freezer or pantry, I was able to splurge on fish (which I really want to add more to our menus).

Breakfast this week: Cereal, cherry oatmeal muffins, eggs/toast

Lunch: Leftovers, Ham or PB sandwich, carrot sticks, yogurt, fruit

Snacks: Granola Oatmeal Bites, Raisins, PB Crackers, Fruit

Our fruit choices this week: Watermelon (sm seedless one... that I hope is sweet!), bananas, oranges, blueberries, strawberries... oh and I picked up a mango just for giggles.

Check out for more menu ideas! :)

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day!

I'm about to head to the couch.. or bed. I think R's already taken the couch! I need a nap! :) We had a massive storm come through last night so I didn't sleep much, nor did anyone else in my house!

I just had to stop in for a minute to share with you my Mother's Day present!

I love it so much! What sweet little hands and feet... that are getting bigger and bigger by the minute! I can't believe that he's almost 2!!
And now instead of writing something sappy and emotional about being a mother to the best little boy in the world, I'm going to go rest! Eli and I need a nap!
I hope you have a blessed Sunday!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

A few recipes for you & a new 'Luke word'

Spinach Artichoke Pizza

1 refrigerated pizza dough
1/2 to 3/4 c pizza sauce
1/2 TBS olive oil
pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
1 can artichokes, drained and roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1 c baby spinach leaves torn into small pieces
shredded cheese

Heat olive oil in saute pan over low heat. Add garlic and remove from heat, stirring (I do this to avoid burning the garlic). Stir for a minute and then add the artichokes and place back on low heat; add the pepper flakes. Cook on low, stirring often, for 2- 3 minutes; remove from heat and set aside. Roll out pizza dough and spread sauce on dough. Evenly spread spinach and then artichoke mixture onto pizza. Top with shredded cheese of your choice. Bake per instructions on pizza dough can.

* I used artichokes that weren't marinated. I also added chopped black and green olives to my side of the pizza! I used colby/jack cheese and also some mozzarella cheese. I actually started baking mine without cheese and then added the cheese half way through, I was afraid the cheese would get too crispy. It was so good! Yumm!

Shepard's Pie

3/4 to 1 lb of ground turkey, or beef
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 c chicken broth (for turkey, beef broth for beef of course)
1- 8 oz can tomato sauce
1/2 c carrots, chopped
1/2 c frozen peas
1/2 c corn
Worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper
3 large white potatoes or the equivalent
2 TBS butter
1/4 c milk
3/4 c shredded cheese

Peel and chop potatoes, put on to boil. Brown ground meat in skillet, drain and set aside. Cook chopped onion and carrots in about 1 tsp olive oil until soft. Add garlic to pan just before adding the meat back to pan; add frozen peas and corn (I used canned corn but frozen would do well too). Stir in broth and tomato sauce; season to taste w/ salt and pepper and a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce. Simmer for about 10 minutes to thicken. In the meantime, drain potatoes. Add butter and milk to potatoes and mash; Season potatoes to taste; set aside. If meat mixture still has too much liquid add a sprinkling of flour to help tighten it up. Pour meat mixture in 2 quart baking dish (or 8x8 square dish); spread potatoes on top and top with cheese. Bake in 350 degree preheated oven covered for 20 minutes and uncovered for 10.

*Of course you can use other veggies in this dish, these are just what I use. And you could also use the potato flakes to make things quicker!

These are both so good! I hope you try them! And surprisingly they are both ones that I 'made' up!


Cute Luke word from today- "Too Pups"

Meaning- "Push Ups"

R was doing push ups in the den tonight and Luke wanted to try.. and I asked him what he was doing and he said, "Too Pups!" SOO cute!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

Publix is not having that great of a sale this week. So I may take a trip to WalMart and shop some there. BLAH! I'm not very motivated with my planning either! My brain always starts working when I look at the sale ads... not this week though! So, here it is..

Monday- Homemade Pizza (R's request), Spinach Salad ~ for me, Peach & Blueberry Cobbler (R's birthday cobbler)
Tuesday- Shepard's Pie (will post recipe later when I find it!), Cheesy Biscuits

Wednesday- Grilled Ham Sandwiches, Spinach Salad

Thursday- Teriyaki Chicken (drumsticks), Roasted Carrots with Honey, Rice

Friday- out

Saturday- out

We normally don't go out to eat much but we had one of R's birthday dinner's canceled so that's been rescheduled for next Friday. Saturday we are taking the seniors from church out to eat for graduation. Sunday is Mother's Day.. and I'm not cooking! So, R... you better plan something! :)

R picked homemade pizza for his birthday meal. Normally he'd pick hot wings, but he's getting those brought to him for lunch from his mom! I haven't exactly asked him what he wants on his pizza though, so I might should! He normally likes just plain cheese.. but I think when he suggested this he might have been talking about a pizza that I've made before with spinach and artichokes on it. It's so good!
I did pick up some drumsticks on sale last week so I'm trying a new recipe with them. I normally buy chicken breast but this will be something different, although I will not be using the fresh ginger this recipe calls for. I'm not a big ginger fan!
Reviews on last weeks menu:
The Potato and Onion Fritatta was good. R liked it but said that he'd rather have it for breakfast (which we did and it was really good the next day!). In my opinion it was kind of bland. Throwing in some ham or bacon would have made it really good! We had it with ketchup and hot sauce though! I mean it's potatoes and eggs! It was easy to make and I will probably make it again, maybe for a special breakfast!
I also made the pumpkin pancakes using my blueberry pancake recipe. They turned out ok, but I think I added too much pumpkin so they we're kind of heavy, not light and fluffy. Luke really liked them though!
I'm tired! Too tired to post b'fast, lunch and snacks. They are usually the same ol' stuff though.
Blueberries are on sale again this week so I'm sure I'll be making muffins!
And my feet are slightly swollen! Just thought I'd add that!
Check out Orgjunkie for more menus!
Edited to add (after a good nights rest)-
Breakfast- cherry muffins, fruit, raisin bread (especially for R for his birthday), oatmeal
Lunch- leftovers, sandwiches, fruit
Snacks- carrots w/ ranch dressing, raisins, vanilla yogurt w/ blueberries (my new obsession), hummus w/ baked tortilla chips, 100 cal packs of honey graham squares, fruit
Happy Birthday My Love! :)