Friday, December 31, 2010

The best laid plans.....

Wellll......Italian Crockpot Soup was put on hold and instead we dined on saltine crackers, OJ, a little bit of brown rice, and gatorade, sigh. Woke up to my youngest emptying his tummy on our bed and spent the rest of the day giving him baths, cuddlying with him, scrubbing floors and doing laundry.

After the boys were bundled up in their nice clean, aired out bedroom for the night, I did take the opportunity to make some gluten-free bread in our toaster oven (still waiting for the proper wiring for our "real range"). Note to self: Fill mini pans no more than 3/4 of batter or it will rise and burn where it pushes it's alluminum foil cover against the top of the oven. I'm looking forward to making some french toast in the morning, snacking on some cinnamon bread drizzled in butter, and pairing some cheesy bread with our lunch tomorrow.

It's almost impossible to believe that today is the last day of 2010! Where did it go? This weekend will be a week of celebrating all we've accomplished this past year and looking foward to what we will take on and accomplish over the next 365 days!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A Day Of Produce and Food Prep......

I have a horrible habit of fluctuating in ........well, some of my habits. I KNOW that eating healthy, local, and organic is the absolute best for my health and the health of my children, but sometimes those other goodies look so yummy and convenient. Then BOOM I'm on a downward spiral, cutting corners, and even allowing my babies to ingest yuckies.

So, another goal and habit that I must master this next year and forevermore is a good meal plan and health habit that I'll stick with and am able to keep my family on track with. In my perusing online for hints and motivation to get things going right I came across and Community Supported Argiculture. What a wonderful idea! Roger and I are looking into two farms in our area that participate in CSA and I'm hoping it pans out. From Juneish til Novemberish, a big ol' box of fresh organic produce every week for around twenty bucks each week. What better way to put us in line for great habits than to have a box of produce each and every week to consume?

On the eatrealgood website there is a wonderful menu planner/meal maker that you can use free of charge. You can type in the fresh produce you have on hand, add any filters (Gluten free and 5 ingredients or less for us) and wahla, you have a long list of wonderful recipes to choose from. Pick the dishes you want to do and shoom, there's a shopping list of all the things needed. So, this morning I created a menu to get us through to next week and went to shopping! Then spent a few hours prepping produce, filling the refrigerator crispers and making some new dishes. So much fun! Not to mention YUMMY!

Today's trial was Pork Chops, Apples, and Green Beans. It was DELISH! Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture, but if you can picture salt and peppered browned chops, with apples fried in butter with a touch of brown sugar and cinnamon, and a side of wonderful green beans. The boys weren't sure their favorite fruit was supposed to be in their dinner, but they tried it and ironically chose the green beans as their favorite part.

Tomorrow is going to be a busy day helping with the family business so it'll be a crockpot meal or two tomorrow....looking forward to a yummy Italian Stew and can't wait til my oven is hooked up again so I can bake up an awesome sounding Tomato Chicken with Green Beans. Here's hoping to a wonderful start to some great habits!

The master artists of our house.

A Wonderful Christmas Wonderland.....

.........though not a Winter Wonderland....

We had an absolutely wonderful (though mostly snowless) Christmas this year. We celebrated over four days, visiting friends and family, sharing gifts and holiday joy. My favorite day of course was December 25th. We spent a fantastic day at home simply enjoying our children and keeping our family and new traditions the center of the day as opposed to commercialism, others expectations, or busyness. It was a wonderful day watching our babies unwrap Christmas in a whole new way!

The boys had a blast decorating our tree a couple weeks back and mama dear even let go of her perfectionism and didn't micro-manage the ornament placement. I was even the proponate of purchasing a "fake tree" and actually enjoyed it immensely (no pine needles in the carpet fa lalalala la la lala!). After the boys decorated the tree, Alan declared it ready for the "perfect star" to be placed on top. Roger picked him up, Alan placed the star, and.....flop! The tree top was too weak to hold up the vintage star topper that I like so much. Well, a tree must have a star, so the boys and I created a "gingerbread star"from cardboard, lots and lots of glitter, buttons, and a little ribbon. (Again, mama is making positive strides and let go of her perfectionism-obvously something I'll be making goals to work on and conquer in 2011). I love the star, and as we were boxing up the ornaments and packing away the tree my four year old Alan declared that our star needed to be set on top of the mirror in the living room-so there it sits for now.

We even enjoyed a sticky evening building a tiny gingerbread village. Every year I declare to myself that the boys and I are going to make gingerbread, and design and build a wonderful gingerbread house decorated with perfect lil' gum drops and m&m's. Again, I pushed the foolish perfectionism aside and bought a kit for us to put together. The boys had a BLAST and I loved the wonderful silly time working with them, their childlike ideas, and goofy lil' sayings. They work together so interesting-like. I was a good girl and simply glued the pieces together, and put the gooey colored icing where the boys directed and they placed all the candies. They were so proud of their accomplishments and they did a fabulous job! Not sure if Alan stuck his hand in some icing or stole a piece of candy here. :P
I have completely enjoyed the past few days of mostly uninterupted time with my boys and fully intend to make this the norm. I am a stay at home, working mom but have discovered recently just how much I have allowed stuff, activities, and poor time management take away valuable, quality time with them and me personally. Another goal to tackle in 2011! This mama is ready to tackle some goals, new priorities, and habits this near year!