Sunday, May 23, 2010

And I thought it was a good day…

It started out perfect, coffee brewing, someone had already gotten Nico his breakfast, Grandpa was here, what more could a mommy want?  Well, for Nico to poop in the potty of course.  Shortly after breakfast he says, “I feel like I have to poop.”  So, he goes off to the potty, but nothing.  Then I just strip him down hoping that tactic will work.  Well, a few minutes later he says the same thing, goes in the potty and shortly after that we all hear a flush.  I am thinking, no way, this was too easy, too good to be true!  So, I had to do a little private detective work and well “check” to make sure he had actually pooped.  The evidence was strongly in his favor on this one, so he got his poop fire truck, his poop candy bar, and got to watch his favorite show.  It was a joyful morning indeed! 

Then came nap time.  I put him in a pull up, put him down, and about 45 minutes later we hear him yelling.  Now, he did the same thing yesterday and had apparently thrown up a little bit.  He is fighting a cold so I think he was yelling, started coughing, and made himself gag.  Well, the same thing happened today!  Perhaps he has learned a new way to get out of naps.  Anyway, he comes downstairs and not 5 minutes later has pooped in his pants (pull up, thank goodness).  What do you do?  I can’t take back the candy, but I did take back his fire truck and said he could get it when he pooped in the potty again.  I am hoping he was just confused, wearing a pull up, still not used to doing it in the potty.  But, needless to say, it was disappointing and disheartening.  I thought we had crossed a major hurdle and now I feel like we are back at the starting line.  We shall see how tomorrow goes. 

So, May 23 started out great, but now I am not so sure.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Just had to add this…

So, I was told I should share recipes.  Here is what I had for lunch today, and it is easy and yummy, and I have to admit, I got the recipe from my sister in law who I believe got it from her brother in law who got it from who knows where, but anyway, here you go:

Chicken lettuce wraps

any amount of chicken, depending on how many you are feeding.  I used about 1/4 pound of chicken tenderloins for myself and have some leftover.

boil chicken, let cool, then shred
mix with hoisin sauce (you can find it in your grocer’s asian foods section)
cut up some green onions (the top, green part) to your desired amount and mix with chicken and sauce
scoop into romaine lettuce leaves and enjoy.  You can also wrap them in rice paper wraps, but I prefer just the chicken and lettuce myself.

Serve with some spring rolls and you are good to go!

This is also a GREAT make ahead meal, you just make up the chicken and you can have it whenever you like!  Great for taking lunch to work or even for a picnic.  


By popular demand

Ok, by one friend who actually enjoys reading my blogs, I am going to try to blog almost daily and include recipes, things the kids are doing and saying, and pretty much anything else I feel like saying.  If nothing else it will be a fabulous way to keep track of my life and I can look back and be reminded that laundry and vacuuming aren’t the only activities I do in a given day.

I am afraid that these blogs will be short and slightly boring as my days are pretty much the same.  Today was different only in that Joe was up with the sun for some reason, I was not, and the kids slept in, well, slept until 6:40 or so, which is sleeping in for them.  So it was a nice quiet morning, they ate breakfast and got ready for school as usual.  Our roomba (robot vacuum) hasn’t been working and that causes a major headache for me as it seems as though none of our other vacuums (yes, I have two, one upstairs and one downstairs) seem to work very well.  I guess you could say our vacuums suck in the sucking arena.  So, I took roomba apart, changed one of the brushes and set him down to see if he was working.  Well, Dom and Nico really got into finding cheerios and other bits of things to put on the floor in front of roomba to see if he (yes, it is a he) would suck them up or not.  He appears to be working fine, but I might use this tactic as a distraction in the future as it wasted a good 20 minutes.  Oh, I should probably tell you that due to Nico’s lack of desire to poop on the potty I have taken away TV and snacks.  But this means that in the mornings and pretty much anytime he is awake none of the kids can watch TV since we only have one, so, we are making due, but it does make the mornings a bit long, I will say that.   I will give it one more day and see if I can break him.  Yesterday he would throw a fit then find something else to do and not care anymore, so I am not sure if I have found his breaking point.  But the house was definitely more quiet and peaceful yesterday with the TV off, that is for sure, and all three kids ate ALL their dinners and then some since their was no afternoon snack. 

Speaking of dinner, Tues night I made one of our family’s favorites, chicken in lemongrass sauce with jasmin rice.  It is one of the few meals that even the kids loves so I make it a lot!  I want to be assured I have leftovers for lunch the next day.  (It is one of those meals that tastes even better the second day).  The recipe is so easy and so yummy and your house will smell soooooo great while you are cooking!  Here is a link to the recipe:

Try it, really, it is awesome.  Last night was pizza night and I am lucky to have a family that actually prefers homemade pizza.  I make the dough in my bread machine and then all I have to do is put it in the pan and add the sauce and cheese.  I would share my dough recipe, but it is kind of a family secret.  You will just have to come over if you want to try it!  But that is where the secrets stop, I use whatever pizza sauce is on sale at the store and buy pre-shredded mozz cheese. 

Alright, all this food talk is making me hungry.  Let’s move on to wonderful things the  are doing and saying.  Nicolas is what we like to call, full of it.  And “it” isn’t what you think.  He is full of life, full of humor, and full of wonderful things to say.  The other day at breakfast he was eating and said, “hey mom, you should make cheerios for the brothers.”  They had already eaten, but I thought it was sweet he was concerned.  Then he disappeared for a minute or two and when he came back I asked where he was.  He replied “I was playing with my  brothers.”  Sweeter words have never been spoken if you ask me.  This morning it was time to take Dom to school and I was rounding the boys up to get shoes on and he walks into the laundry room and stands at attention and salutes me and says “what do you both need?”  See what I mean about being full of it?  Such a character. 

I am still training for a half marathon in June which means I am at the gym most every day and running around our very hilly neighborhood on weekends.  Luckily Nicolas LOVES the gym childcare and can’t wait to go.  As of last week I developed shin splints, which are no fun.  Luckily they kind of disappear while you are running, once the muscles get warmed up, but as soon as you stop, wow, they don’t waste any time seizing up.  So, I have had to take it easy lately, not running as much but doing other things while at the gym, which I hate.  I realize any training or conditioning will help me, but I just have it in my brain that I HAVE to run, that is the only way I will be ready for the race.  So, I think my shin splints were my body telling me it is ok to do other things, like bike ride, or even walk.  They are feeling much better now, but it was a rough week last week training wise.

The big boys are just that, getting so big.  Anthony has been working on his first “report” at school.  He had to research and animal (he chose tiger shark) and write about various things, he had to make a diagram of the animal, then he had to mount all of his information on a tri-fold board and make it look nice for the presentation he will do at open house next week.  He worked so hard and was so proud of himself, and I was proud too!  It is neat to see your kid excited about school and learning and wanting to do their best.  Anthony has also been doing great at soccer.  I was reminded by his Auntie and Uncle that he used to be afraid of balls, would cry when you rolled one to him, so to see him running and chasing and play goalie, well, it is fun.  And Dom, he too is loving soccer, sometimes a little too much.  He tends to get really upset about losing, and even though they don’t keep score in his league, you better believe HE keeps score and they didn’t win last week.  But, he pulled it together which was a huge step.  I mean, the kid cries when he plays a video game and can’t pass a certain level.  That is how deep his competitive drive goes. 

So, that is our life over the last few days.  The next few weeks are proving to be full of family visits, marathons, and school ending.  I will do my best to keep things current, but blogging might have to go by the wayside in order to keep my sanity.   

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


So, most of you know I am on Atkins.  But, after watching Oprah today I am considering going Vegan, the exact OPPOSITE of Atkins.  For a little while now Joe and I have been really thinking about what we eat, where it comes from, shopping the perimeter of the grocery store, eating real food, etc.  But after today I am now considering taking it to an extreme.  And it isn’t to lose weight, it is to save my life!  A thought provoking question was asked on the show, “would you rather spend more on food in your lifetime, or healthcare?”  50 years ago, 18% of houeshold income was spent on food, and 7% was spent on healthcare, those numbers have since switched.  That is kind of eye opening.  When you add up the way food is raised, processed food in general, and fast food, it is no wonder Americans have the highest rates of heart disease, diabetes, and obesity in the world.  We don’t eat food anymore, we eat food flavored products that are “enriched” with nutrients rather than simply containing the nutrients naturally.  When farmers put the bottom line ahead of healthy, environmentally and animal friendly practices, you have a recipe for bad things to come later.  Animals are fed foods they aren’t used to, which means they get sick easier, which means they need to be fed antibiotics, which means WE are eating those antibiotics, PLUS eating meat that doesn’t taste as great as it could, was the animal allowed to feed and live as it normally would.  Now I know that our society is one of fast, convenient, and cheap, which is why the practices that are in place now were started in the first place, but I think we need to have a total food revolution.  Let’s stop feeding ourselves, and our children, food that isn’t food, food that doesn’t nourish but inevitably will harm them, and start eating real, good, healthy food.  It isn’t that hard, and the extra cost is worth it, if you ask me.  You know those HUGE chicken breasts we all love to  buy?  Well, those aren’t natural.  Chickens aren’t mostly white meat, like we think, they are more evenly balanced between white and dark, and are usually much smaller than we are used to.  Chickens raised on chicken farms are so grossly overweight and fed growth hormones to expedite their growth that their organs can’t support their bodies.  They can’t walk, can barely stand up!  Does that sound like the kind of meat you want to eat?  Or would you rather eat a chicken that was allowed to grow at its natural rate, eat what it usually eats, and then be healthy when it is finally sent to be processed?  Now, some would say, why process?  Let the chicken live out its life, and that is a fine way to think.  That is what vegans think and that is why they don’t eat at of any kind of meat, no matter how it is raised.  It is all about choices in the end.  How do you want to take care of yourself and your loved ones?  It doesn’t mean going vegan, it doesn’t even mean never eating fast food.  Perhaps it just means cooking at home more often, buying fresh food rather than processed or frozen foods.  Readjusting your lives to accomadate your new choices.  It isn’t easy.  No matter what your choices.  Believe me, I would MUCH rather feed my kids frozen chicken nuggets and gogurt more often than not simply because it is easier than making them something wholesome and from scratch.  But what am I really doing in the end?  I am potentially setting them up for a life of horrible health problems and poor eating habits.  That is not what I want to do.  Now, I actually think my kids eat pretty well.  They like fruits and veggies, they drink milk, they get a lot of exercise, but another question was asked on the show.  Would your great-grandmother recognize the food you are eating?  Well, not a lot of it, no.  If I handed my great-grandmother, or grandmother for that matter, a Gogurt, they would have no idea what it was.  Toothepaste, glue?  How do you get it in your body?  I mean, how true is this of so much of what we eat? 

So, in an effort to retrain myself and my family, I am going to try really hard to eat more actual food.  Foods that sound like aliens.  Things like Bok Choy, collard greens, etc.  God is no dummy and He created more things to eat than we could ever imagine, things that will nourish us, satisfy us, and help us live and grow as He designed us to.  But instead we, and I mostly mean us Americans on the Western diet, have bastardized our diets, choosing instead to eat chemicals and additives simply because it is easier.  But is it really?  Is suffering through a heart transplant really easier than eating more veggies and fewer Big Macs?  It sounds ominous to us, to cook food each day, to eat fresh food that has to be prepared, but in the end you will benefit far more than you ever imagined.  I encourage all of you to open your fridge, and I will do the same, and take out anything that isn’t actual food and set it on your counter, and then take a look at what is left.  I fear that the counter items will far outnumber those left in the fridge, when it should be the other way around.  If you happen to have a fridge full of good, fresh food, GOOD FOR YOU!!!  Keep it up and share your knowledge with a friend or loved one.  I am going to post pics of my “counter experiment” soon.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

So long sunshine…

..hello rain boots and umbrellas!  This has been a crazy week here in San Diego.  I vaguely remember the last el nino season, 10 years ago I believe, but this seems worse for some reason.  I suppose because now, instead of just dealing with getting myself to and from class in one piece I now have to figure out how to dress three children for torrential rain, equip them with umbrellas and boots and rain jackets, drop off and pick them up from school, AND somehow go grocery shopping all without ending up drenched.  It is all trial and error. 

Needless to say, we have been inside for the last week and that has taken its toll.  The kids have been locked in classrooms at school with movies instead of recess, then they are locked in the house when they get home with no outlet for their energy, except for taking out their aggressions on each other.  But we have managed.  I have taken it upon myself to learn knitting and seeing as how we have been housebound for a week have actually finished a couple projects.  It’s not easy, and had it not been for the rain I would have given up and gone on a bike ride or something, but it was almost as if someone was willing me to stay home and stick it out and not give up.  So I did.  Here is what I have to show for my efforts so far.  Some cute neck warmers that are sure to come in handy when the next round of storms hits, which they will, or when my family and I head up to the snow, which we will.  DSC01600DSC01604I am going to attempt a hat next, one that matches.  We shall see.  I am not sure my nerves can handle another bout of fighting with yarn and needles.  But again, I am determined. 

Onto what I have planned for 2010.  I want to lose 10 pounds, potty train my youngest child, run or walk in some sort of race, and get my house organized.  If all I accomplish is the potty training I will be happy.  That will mean an end to 7.5 years of diapers without a break.  Do you know how much money that will save me in a year?  Alot.  I think, in an attempt to keep myself honest, I will document some of these things, so you can actually see my progress, or lack thereof as it may be.  The getting organized is going to be rough.  I LOVE junk drawers and bins and baskets and virtually any kind of storage device.  I love to fill them, with no rhyme or reason.  It is going to take some work, and some tears I am sure, to put my many recepticals to good and proper use.  I think that by taking pictures and letting the world see MY world I will be more motivated to make the changes I need to make.  Primarily, not putting make-up and matchbox cars in the same place anymore.  Ok, off to document my mess.