Thursday, February 28, 2013

Recipe Share

I'm not exactly sure how many servings of vegetables you're supposed to eat in a given day but I'm guessing it's more than zero. For the life of me I cannot get Parker to eat a veggie.  Even though I made all of her baby food from scratch and fed her nothing processed like Ruth Yaron, God of the Super Baby Food book, said will guarantee healthy eating habits for life.  The "it's all baby will know and if it's all they know it's all they will eat" approach did not exactly pan out for us.

I've tried all the veggie sneaking tricks in the book and while that worked for a while, Parker's onto us.  But in an effort to shove something green down her throat I decided to make broccoli patties.  It fit my two requirements--yummy and super easy--and Kris and I gobbled 'em down. Olive oil, garlic, onion and parm Salmon on the side--my oh my was I a happy camper.


Not so much. 

Children thrive all the time on Stoneyfield yogurt, Tyson all natural chicken nuggets, Annie's mac, fruit, scrambled eggs, and Craisins right? Right?!


Broccoli Cheese Bites--modified from Stacy Snacks

16 oz. package of frozen chopped broccoli, thawed and drained of liquid
1 1/2 cup of grated cheddar cheese
4 eggs
salt & pepper
1 cup of breadcrumbs

Mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl.

With your hands, form patties and lay on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Bake at 375F for 25 minutes, turning the patties after the first 15 minutes.

Eat them while exaggerating their deliciousness.  "Ohhhh honey, aren't these just SO GOOD?! Like the best thing to EVER hit your lips?! I want to eat these EVERY SINGLE DAY for the rest of my life, that's how good they are!"

Parker exaggerates her dislike by trying to feed them to Sydney while giggling uncontrollably.

Parker-1.  Broccoli Bites-0.

P: Hey, Teagan, guess what? These parents of ours are going to start feeding you food soon. Here's what you do.  Pretend to like the food at first. Make mommy scour the aisles at Whole Foods looking for ridiculous organic eats.  Make her stay up late steaming, mashing, peeling, and freezing said food.  Then BOOM one day in your early toddler years refuse to eat this healthiness.  Pretend you have never ate healthy in your life. Pretend that you want to take a bite of the food and then throw it down to the dog.  It will be hilarious.

Friday, February 22, 2013


I have been gingerly informed by my sister that I am the latest recipient of the blogging slacker award. 

Last week I went to power up the laptop and it didn’t respond.   “Oh no, laptop broke.  Batteries dead.  People fix it for us.” I would have used some choice words but Parker summed it up pretty nicely.  The two year warranty expired in October.  Of course it did.  So unless the geniuses at Birmingham Geek can perform some magic on it for the price tag of practically free we’re in the market for a new computer.  I’m liking those ultrabooks that are a tablet and laptop in one but we already have a Kindle Fire so that may be tablet overload.  Desktops are not up my alley.  Any suggestions, friends?

No laptop = no DSLR photo transferring and no Photoshop which = no good photos which = lack of blogging.  I do have my phone but the photo snob in me is not down with the picture quality. Oh, and it’s tax season again so I’m slammed.  Yippity doo dah yippity day. I have no patience for dumb but apparently many, many people missed that memo.  I won’t be sad if my next maternity leave falls from January through April so I can miss out on all the insanity. 

Other than that it’s been the same old awesomeness.  Trying out new recipes on the weekends, loving on my babes after my office time, watching like 30 different Harlem Shake videos (there's an Ohio University one guys!) shopping (though I need to get better about buying some stuff for ME and not the babies—this weekend, I promise!).  I mean, even I don’t have aviators.

I do have pretty pink nail polish though that I share with Parker.

Typical Teagan, smiling away.  

Parker gave the camera some lovin too.

Now I'm off to see what the Schwan's man can offer me.  I have fond memories of eating Schwan's ice cream at Grandma Robbie's and apparently this still exists.  Groceries delivered to my door? Sign me up.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy V-Day!

There has been crafting, crafting, and more crafting in our house this Valentine's season. It is a season, right?

Melted crayons were a great success. 

Are we photoshooting or crayon making?!

TADA! The finished product made it into the Valentine boxes this morning for all of Parker's friends.

Heart shaped browines drizzled with white chocolate and topped with sprinkles (once again, my sprinkle fetish is all loud and proud) were made for the teachers.

Cards were made for the grandparents.

Hi teeny tiny baby toes and itty bitty toddler hands!
Secret message Valentine's were a hit.

Write on white paper with a white crayon...

Then color over it with watercolors to reveal your message.

Or body paint.  Your choice.

Back away with the dish towel, woman.  My hands are obviously clean.

Heart hands cooperated during craft time but didn't feel like cooperating during picture rotation time. 

The madness was capped off with a photoshoot.


So there you have it.  Tonight we will dine on a heart shaped pizza, guzzle sparkling apple juice so Parker can partake, and open our gifts from cupid. 

Happy love day, all!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Good Eats

I’m a woman of many addictions.

-Costco. If you crave chicken nuggets and Annie’s mac look no further.
-Amazon. I know the exact time, down to the minute, when the Amazon man (aka FedEx delivery dude) will show up to our door. I’m pretty confident that if days went by without a package being delivered our Amazon man would call the cops to make sure we were still alive.
-Buckwild. Yup, not ashamed.
-Pinnacle Whipped Cream Vodka. Three Olives Loopy vodka. Actually, all flavored vodkas in general. Why were these not invented yet during my college years? Perhaps I’m more obsessed with the idea of fun vodkas. Nursing and waking up each day with two little ones just doesn’t go hand in hand with yummolicious mixed drinks.
-Pinterest. Cannot.stop.pinning.

I’ve been pinning out the wazoo lately. V-day crafts (which I’ll try and get to tomorrow) and food has been happening in the S house. Thank God for nursing burning like 500 calories a day because I need it now more than ever.

Remember that Nutella Banana ice cream I mentioned? IT ACTUALLY WORKED.  Sort of blows my mind that frozen bananas can basically turn into soft serve.

I sliced one large banana and froze it.  After it was good and solid I threw it in the food processor with two tablespoons of Nutella for about a minute.  Topped it off with sprinkles and badaboom, dessert was served.

Chocolate covered caramel corn.  Well what you see here is just plain old chocolate covered popcorn.  After I devoured like all of it I realized that something was off.  Duh! I was missing the caramel factor.  Incredible. So incredible that I cannot even show you a picture.  I ate it that fast.  Recipe here. Just drizzle it with chocolate and top with sprinkles (see a trend?).

Perhaps my finest creation.  Cinnamon Toast Crunch.

This is just a cute baby.  Carry on.

Chicken stuffed shells. I modified this baby to my liking but based it off of this recipe:

1 (12-ounce) box uncooked jumbo pasta shells
2 cups chopped cooked chicken
2 cups fresh chopped spinach
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (15oz) container ricotta cheese
1 (8oz) package cream cheese, softened
1 (5oz) package shredded Parmesan cheese (about 1 2/3 cups)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 Tablespoon dried parsley flakes
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
2 (26oz) jar prepared Alfredo sauce
1. Cook shells according to package directions. Drain and set shells  aside.
2. Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease 9×13 baking dish.
3. In a large bowl, combine chicken and all the rest of the ingredients except mozzarella and sauce. Stir in 1 cup mozzarella. Spoon into shells.
4. Spread half of sauce into prepared baking dishes. Arrange shells over sauce; top with remaining sauce. Cover tightly with heavy-duty aluminum foil.
5. Bake, covered, for 40 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with remaining 1 cup mozzarella. Bake for 5 to 10 more minutes.

Enjoy.  And don’t blame me.  It IS Fat Tuesday after all!

Thursday, February 7, 2013


Watch as I turn this...

Into this!

Mama got a new ride!  I've been eyeing the GMC Acadia for some time and boy did the anticipation pay off. Heated seats, back up camera, three rows to grow into...devine! Four days in and I have yet to hit anything.  The work parking structure polls are placed inconspicuously throughout the place, giving you approximately a 1 in 1000 chance of not slightly nudging your car into them on any given day.  Why just yesterday I saw a lady back straight into a pole. You could see this coming from a mile away.  In retrospect I should have honked but my body froze waiting for the inevitable.  The lady glared at me and angrily waved me past, as if I too was to blame.  Um, okay chick-a-lick.

I didn't exit my car until the elevator doors closed behind her.  That's one awkward elevator ride I wasn't about to start my day with.

I didn't realize how hard it was going to be to part with the Equinox until the time came.  Memories were made during the past six and a half years.  I bought it weeks after my first real job, feeling on top of the world with a sweet gig and a new SUV.  It made the move from Ohio to Michigan, picked up Sydney when she was an itty bitty 12 week old pup, drove Kris and I to Ohio University on our third dating anniversary where he proposed to me (and almost forgot the ring...another story, another day ;), brought our two darling babies home from the hospital...leaving it all alone in the dealership parking lot practically brought tears to my eyes.  I just hope she finds a good home and makes loads of memories with her new owner.

I wonder what excitement the Acadia will bring.  What trips will she go on? How many more babies will she bring home from the hospital? How many times will she visit our good friend, the Dent Eliminator, after invading the personal space of the parking structure?

Time will tell :)

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

January Recap

January has come and gone which means one month closer to December. This is a good thing in Parker's world since she's ready for Santa to come again. We have, I don't know, like 1534 kid books and what does Parker want to read every single night? The Night Before Christmas.

We beat the snow and had loads of fun this month. Here we are all bundled up and ready for our Fire and Ice date.  I wouldn't say that Parker actually loved the fireworks.  "Mommy, too loud.  Mommy, almost done? YAYMOMMYALLDONE!" Maybe next year.

Maybe next year she will cooperate for a photo too.

I made lots o tasty treats this month.  One in particular was this bad boy. I'm a granola fiend. I also have a slight obsession with Costco so I have jars of peanut butter the size of my house.  What better way to use them up than by making peanut butter granola? Super easy, super cheap, and when you get that craving for granola at 10pm—no? never? only me?—you’re only a few ingredients and 15 minutes away from satisfying that craving.

¼ cup peanut butter
¼ cup honey
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp vanilla
2 cups old fashioned oats
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Lay parchment paper down on cookie sheet and set aside.  Combine peanut butter and honey in a bowl and microwave until peanut butter melts. Stir cinnamon and vanilla into peanut butter and honey mixture.  Add oats and stir until oats are completely covered in peanut butter mixture.  Spread out oats mixture onto prepared cookie sheet and bake for 7-8 minutes until granola is slightly browned.  

Yum to the o.

January also brought my return to work, Teagan’s start at daycare, and Parker moving back to full time at school.  Work is still going swimmingly and I’m very much enjoying being back.  Teagan is still soaking up the attention from her teachers and has made some adorable little buddies! And knock on wood, has yet to catch a cold from her friends. Maybe that flu gave her some good immunity. Parker is learning at an alarming rate. I can’t even tell you the number of books she picks up and “reads.” And reads them correctly! Girl got a memory, that’s for sure.

Documented evidence of sharing.

I was back to the office for a whopping week before daycare closed for a snow day.  Bonus! Unfortunately I did not get this memo until after I stumbled from bed at 5am, wrangled babies into clothes and winter gear, and bundled them up in the car. It was only once I saw our neighbor (one of Parker's teachers) walking back from school when I was notified that they were closed.

Sure enough on Tuesday I was met with an email in my work inbox from daycare the day before about the snow day. And sure enough I updated my email preferences to gmail that same day. 

The snow, sleet, and cold motivated me to turn our vacation talk into reality.  Come September we'll be soaking up the rays beachside in good ol' Myrtle Beach! We booked a week at a resort where one of my coworkers owned a condo.  The toughest part I have with vacation is not really knowing the condition of your room until you arrive.  Trip Advisor only clues you in so much so I'm glad to know straight from the source that we're in for a good time.

Up North trips will happen soon too thanks to my wonderful coworkers and their wonderful cottages though those trips don't need to be set in stone. Six years in Michigan and we've never made it up north...I know! If you live in Michigan you know how insane that must sound.  Recommendations on sights to see and where to dine will be much appreciated :)

Looking forward to what the month of love has in store for us next! I have a sneaking suspicion that it may involve a little Seasame Street Live :)

Happy day, friends!