Monday, August 31, 2009

Chicken Soup...for My Soul

I know you are all dying to know whata else you can do with a $5 rotisserie chicken so I'm going to tell you. You can make soup. You might be thinking ...."couldn't I just buy a raw chicken from the store, cook it, bone it, and bake soup that way?" The answer...yes. Yes you could. But it would probably cost close to $5 to buy a chicken the size of the cooked ones they sell at Costco and Sam's Club and then that would be a lot more work. So--do whatever you want. I'm buying the rotisserie. Which also may have something to do with the fact that Sams Club is a mile from my house and I was there anyway.

I'm adding garlic, carrots, onion, celery, peas, whole wheat egg noodles, homemade chicken broth that I froze last winter so hopefully it doesn't taste freezer burned, and cream of chicken soup. Should be good. Then it will be a meal to take to a family from church, dinner for us tonight, and I'll freeze the rest for our Community Group Kickoff party next Monday. All for a grand total of $11 to feed at the least 18 people, so take that crappy economy!

The Feeding Disasters

Now that Elise can feed herself the kitchen table and floor are disastrous. Pretty much at all times. However, I will happily take the messy, sticky floor and table ...and child, because it is almost as great as having a babysitter. I can sit her in her little chair, give her a peach, a pear, or a bagel and she will stuff her face and sit quietly for almost forever.

Life is glorious. Until I have to clean up the mess and try to get the stains out of her clothes. Then it gets a little "sticky".

Robbie gets a little jealous about Elise getting photographed now that she does interesting things so I tossed in a pic of him looking happy at the breakfast table too (and playing the fishing game, which by the way was the best $4 investment I've ever made).

Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Freaking Dog

If before today I was in the running for "mother of the year" I'm not anymore. This afternoon we were leaving my mom's house in Flagstaff heading home after my brother's wedding weekend (which i will blog more about later!) and the following conversation ensued:

Robbie: "Mommy where's Tom?"
Me: "Oh crap! We forgot our freaking dog!"
We turn around and go to pick up the dog.
Robbie: "Hi Freaking Tom."
Me: Laughing and rolling eyes at Rob.
Robbie: "Mom, now you forgot your freaking car." (Margaret drove it home.)

In case you are wondering, I do realize that saying the word freaking in itself is not ladylike or even common good manners. So, now I have had to apologize to my child for using inappropriate words and explain to him why he can't say "freaking". Lovely...

(But it did provide a good laugh and some fodder for the blog)

The Glorious Organized Drawer

I just can't stop opening my "junk" drawer to see this masterpiece. It looks so great I'm pretty sure I slept better for a week because of it. I find that I put off what seems to be "major" projects because I dread completing them ... and then once I set my mind and body to do it--it really isn't a big deal at all and it is finished quickly. So--May I advise you to do the one thing you've been dreading this week I promise you'll sleep better tonight. (If not only because you've exerted yourself!)

Now--I'm off to procrastinate on my seven loads of laundry and cleaning my windows...

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Magical Cardboard Box

We finally replaced our bar stools a few weeks ago. I had sold my cheesy dorm-room style bar stools for $5 on because I just couldn't stand them one more day. So we went without for about a year, which really isn't a big deal. BUT THEN I was walking in Sam's Club....and there they were. The perfect set of two barstools that matched my table exactly so Rob and I made a deal...if I could buy the barstools (for $114) then he could buy a new phone (for $199). Now that I'm writing this I realize that it wasn't a very fair deal...I should've at least thrown in a pair of jeans or something since I waas getting something practical for the house and he was getting a "toy"...but I won't digress any further and tell you about the Christmas that he got $400 cash and I got a new vacuum sweeper.

Anyway, we brought home the stools...and --GASP, they were completely assembled. It was a Christmas miracle, seriously. (just a little earlier than Christmas) They look great and we are really happy to have somewhere to sit. All that story to say....We put the big cardboard box that the stools came in, into Robbie's bedroom and I am completely convinced that there was fairy dust sprinkled on that box or some sort of magical spell on it. Robbie played for HOURS in that box over the course of a week. He would be just quietly playing cars in his little box or playing "store" or whatever he was doing I didn't even care, he was completely self-sufficiently entertaining himself with a dumb box.

Now to the sad part of the story...Rob cleaned up the back yard and trimmed all of the bushes last weekend so he needed a place to stick all of the bush-parts for trash....and he used the box. So, the box is no more. Thankfully I got a really cute picture of the kids in it before it departed our lives forever.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Sitting Up

Elise is officially nine months-old.

People are always asking "What is Elise doing now?" And what really seemed like FOR-ever all she did was drool and "talk". But a few weeks ago she started sitting up on her own--and now she's a pro. I think the fact that we have virtually no carpetting now has probably adversely affected the rate of her sitting/crawling development. But have no fear...she's sitting now and she really REALLY wants to crawl. She gets on her knees and rocks around a bit and then gets frustrated. So I'm sure it will be no time at I'll that I'll be posting about her new crawling habit. Thankfully she is still very low-maintenance happy girl and doesn't require much to just be content. We love her. I think we'll keep her.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Ever and After

Rob is out of town for the week--which we all hate and miss him terribly. But, Aunt Margaret to the rescue! (cue Super Woman theme song) So tonight we took the two kids all the way to Avondale to Hobby Lobby looking for a giant "R" for robbie's room. (Which I didn't find if you're wondering.) As we were walking out of the store Margaret said, "Robbie, can I sit in your carseat?" He said no. Margaret said, "What...are you saying I'm fat?" Robbie replied, "You're as fat as the ever and after."

We just laughed and laughed. He is such a funny kid...and thankfully "Aunt Margaret" thought it was funny too and she doesn't have a complex. And as I'm writing this I'm still laughing. He is seriously soo funny. Also on the way home he said he didn't need to go home and go to bed, he was "going to Jack's house to have a party."

P.S. In case you're wondering I used the last bit of rotisserie chicken Sunday night to make a chicken pesto pizza with sundried tomatoes. Seriously, if you haven't picked up a chicken at Costco or Sam's Club-you should.

P.S.S. I should mention that one reason this quote from Robbie was so hilarious could've been that directly prior to the jaunt to Hobby Lobby, I backed out of my garage and directly into my sister's car because I had so many donations to take to Goodwill I couldn't see out the window. We laughed a lot. Her car is a giant heap of crap and we all hate it so it was funny and not tragic.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

They Look Just Alike

Robbie 5 months.

Elise 4 months.

Everyone always tells me that Elise looks "just like Robbie". And I nod and smile, but I've never really seen the resemblance. Until I recently started browsing some old baby pics of Robbie. Now, I see. THEY LOOK a LOT ALIKE! It's crazy. Elise has a different nose and a paler skin....but they look a lot alike!

They love each other so much too, it is so sweet to watch. When robbie just walkes by her she lights up at the very sight of him. Last weekend Rob "tapped" Elise's hand and said "No spitting Elise"--she started bawling like the dramatic girl she is. Robbie looked at her, looked at me and started bawling himself. He doesn't like her to be hurt or cry or be sad for any reason. I'm sure it won't last, but I'm going to enjoy it while it does! Because soon, I'm sure he'll be the one "tapping" her and making her cry.

Smoked Cheddar Kettlecorn---Need I Say More?

If you haven't ever tried this should. Or maybe you shouldn't. It is seriously addicting. Only 150 calories for 2 cups of popcorn...the only problem is if you eat the whole bag in two days it could make a serious dent in your diet program. Hypothetically speaking only of course.

I just had to share that Popcorn, Indiana Smoked Cheddar Kettlecorn is super delicious!! My entire family (besides Elise) is completely addicted.

Monday, August 10, 2009

A Single Rotisserie Chicken...

Yesterday we stopped by Sam's Club after church to grab a hot dog and a few staples--stuff that really every family needs, like a gallon can of ketchup for only $2.73. Yes, there is high fructose corn syrup in ketchup. No, I have no plans of getting that out of my kids' diet any time in the remotely near future. Thanks for asking though. We probably go through one "bottle" of ketchup every other week. Therefore if I buy the enormous can for the value price and I'm pretty sure I save about $12.00 on ketchup.

Anyway, I digress. The rotisserie chicken is the subject of this blog post. Did you know that there are an infinite number of things you can do with a rotisserie chicken in any given week? I've taken a liking to the little birds...only $5 and I can get at least 3 meals out of it. This week:
1. Monday lunch with friends: chicken salad sandwich (just add apples, red onion, mayo & sour cream)
2. Monday dinner: chicken tacos (just add a bit of water and taco seasoning)
3. Wed. dinner: bbq chicken salads (mix with bbq sauce and add on top of lettuce, corn, onions, black beans, cheddar and ranch dressing)
4. PLUS leftovers of all of the above for lunches, etc.

In case you are wondering, yes I am aware of the other 2,471 things you can make with chicken straight off of a rotisserie. But, hey if you have a great idea of what to do feel free to let me know. I love making chicken enchiladas, chicken pot pie, bbq chicken sandwiches, and chicken chili with it too. Oh AND buffalo chicken dip is also delicious. (Also you could put it in the crock pot and make homemade broth to freeze for future soups too. I don't do that, but if you aren't lazy and are more frugal than could.)

Anyway, this is possibly the most random blog post ever, but I was pretty excited about my chicken and had to share. With potentially no one, because I have no idea if anyone really reads this besides....well, not even my mom.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

healthy, well balanced meal

As always we insist on only fully nutritious, well-balanced meals for our children. As you can see from the picture. Ok, that's crap. I always said "no fruit snacks" or "no juice" or "no candy" for my kids. I knew I just wouldn't ever give my kids junk to eat or bribe them to behave, or yell at them in public, or have the screaming toddler in far almost everything I said "I will never..." I have ended up doing. Parenting is not what you imagine it will be like. Sometimes it is n't worth making an issue about a cookie at the grocery store or a juice box at a birthday party. Just go with it and brush your kids' teeth before they go to bed.

Robbie was eating a chocolate donut for breakfast at the cabin the other day and ended up with a perfect chocolate mustache. Pretty cute, but again just evidence of our nutritional neglect. (Never mind the cash and perscription drugs in the background either)

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Splish Splash

Now that Elise is sitting up on her own.....she can take a bath with Robbie!! My life has pretty much been revolutionized this summer: she holds her own bottle, Robbie can get himself dressed, and I can 2-in-1 their baths. Pretty great. It's enough to make me not want to have any more children, it's getting a bit easier. (knock on wood)

Then, Rob told me he may have to go to China for 4 weeks. Being a single mom has never been one of my goals in life. Definitely no more children, at least no time soon. Four. Weeks. In. China. I'm pretty sure I needn't say any more about that.

Anyway--back to the subject. The kiddos take baths together, they both love it--it's great. I can read a book to kill the afternoon while they play in the bath if I am desperate enough to survive the day. (while sitting in the bathroom watching them of course.)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Growing Up

Well everyone tells you that your kids "grow up so fast" but at the moment it doesn't always feel that way. Sometimes it feels as though one rough day is an entire eternity and will never end. But, really they do grow up so fast. Robbie is already "too cool" to hold my hand in public!! The nerve.

The other day Elise was playing in her room and she has figured out how to roll to get where she wants. She rolled over to the toy box and helped herself. She doesn't seem to have any interest in crawling, but she's smart enough to get from point A to point B on her own. She's "the baby". I find myself asking "how is she old enough to do that?" Which leads to the answer, "they grow up sooo fast."