Showing posts from May, 2011

Crazy Crazy Weekend and Lots of Party Updates

Wow! What a crazy weekend. The rest of the cleaning went very well. However, after getting the cleaning done, things have been crazy. We spent a very very quick trip to the ER after cleaning was over. As you know, our daughter is 10-years-old. My DH was showing her and her best friend who was sleeping over how to play golf. He did have a discussion with them about safety and making sure that you are always away from someone's swing. Needless to say, he walked away for one moment and an accident happened. Phoebe got hit accidentally. The funny thing is at first I was relieved, as when we heard the scream and the girls run in, I thought it was her best friend. Is it odd that I was relieved that it wasn't? I know DH felt the same way. You never want to tell someone their kid visiting your house needs emergency attention. But then we needed to quickly assess where all the blood was coming from and to get it to stop if possible. It did stop bleeding. It was a small …

Cleaning Time!

9:10 AM
I am about to clean this house from top to bottom! Let's see how much I can get done in the next two hours!

1:20 PM
The upstairs is cleaned and I straightened up the garage. What's taking so long of course is the boys. DH is outside mulching. They spent some time out there helping Daddy and got so dirty we cleaned out the wading pool and put them in it to rinse them off. They will still need a good bath tonight.

I'm taking a break before I tackle the downstairs. This is definitely a Crisis Cleaning, but it's OK. We've all had such a busy week, I haven't had time to walk around in the evening putting everyone's stuff back where it belongs. Everyone in this house (other than me of course) has a habit of just leaving things where ever they put them and then no one can find anything later, LOL. I'm taking a break with some coffee and I'll catch up on some blog reading and then finish this job!

Progress Not Perfection

I definitely need to update my blog more often. Things just get so busy and I'm trying to make progress on things in our life. I've started searching out some blogs that talk about Flylady as well as organizing and motivation to keep me going. And I'm trying not to fuss with myself if things aren't going as planned.

Some things I've been getting very good at - last week I exercised 5 days in the week, and this week I have exercised Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday - I've also been using a three section notebook to write down daily tasks and longer-term goals. I need to get better at referring to it once I'm home after work, but it's getting better. The downside is my weight has been stable and I still feel bloated in my stomach sometimes. This is odd for me, as I'm used to gaining weight in my hips and not having it show up on my stomach. This might be what being over 40 is like, LOL. And then last night I had a bladder infection hit me all of a…

Menu Plan - Week of 5/23/2011

Here's this week's dinner plan.

Tuna salad sandwiches (with lettuce & tomato), pickles and baby carrots on the side

Turkey Burgers, grilled zucchini, grilled pineapple, quinoa salad w/figs and walnuts from previous post

Steamed shrimp, home-made sweet potato fries, roasted califlower with romano cheese (the kids love this veggie dish!)

Breakfast for Dinner - buttermilk pancakes (I'm going to try the receipe Gwyneth Paltrow has in Self magazine this past month), bacon or scrapple, fresh fruit

Home-made pizza, salad

Saturday - Not sure, maybe leftovers, as we'll be gearing up for the party the next day.

Saturday - The Boys' Two-Year Birthday Party!!!!
Grilled marinated chicken
possibly some hot dogs
Grilled corn on the cob
Potato salad
Regular salad
Elmo cake and ice cream

Updated: Falafel Pita Sandwiches and Quinoa Salad with Figs and Walnuts

As requested, this is how we eat falafel pita sandwiches in our house. First we make a yogurt-garlic-dill spread the day before or that morning. The recipe is as follows:

1 cup plain yogurt (or sour cream)
2 minced garlic cloves
chopped up dill to taste
pepper to taste

We usually use regular pita bread and cut them in half for the sandwich pocket, but I think next time we'll try the pocketless pita bread and just fold it over for the sandwich.

You take the bread, spread the yogurt-garlic-dill dip on it, we like to cut the falafel in half before we put that on the sandwich and then also fill with alfalfa sprouts, mixed greens and/or sliced cucumber. Yum!

Updated: I missed some things the first time I typed up this recipe. This is why I never cook without a recipe. I forget ingredients too easily. We usually serve this with hummus with pita and carrots to dip and a quinoa salad or couscous to go with it. The quinoa salad I made was made the following:

1 1/2 cup quinoa uncooked
12 dri…

Weekly Menu Plan - Week of 5/16/2011

Meant to post this yesterday, but this is what we're eating at our house this week for dinner!

Falafel pita sandwiches w/garlicky yogurt dill dip, alfalfa sprouts, greens and cucumbers. Also some leftover quinoa salad. It's a new recipe I need to post. It has figs, walnuts, red peppers, celery and carrots in it. Yum! And hummus with pita chips

Hot dogs, sweet potato fries and roasted brocolli

Grilled rosemary shrimp kabobs, brown rice, steamed carrots

Turkey Picadillo (from Leanne Ely's Low Carb Saving Dinner book), mashed faux-tay-toes, steamed brussel sprouts with sauteed mushrooms

Homemade pizza and salad

Saturday - going to Scottish festival. Not sure if we'll just have dinner there yet.

Sunday - TBD. Possibly a barbeque menu if the weather is nice for grilling. Maybe invite some friends over if we're in the mood to cook for a big group.

Family Portraits!!!

We had our first family portrait done ever at the end of May. Our Church is doing them for their family directory and Tom did a great job scheduling our time for a Saturday morning at 10:30. The boys had breakfast, didn't need lunch yet and they don't want to nap until after lunch. Everything worked out great.

Here's the one the church is going to have in their directory:

Here is the one that we got a big copy and had them frame it. It's already hanging up in the hallway and we're so happy with how it turned out.

We also got an 8x10 of this and it's on a buffet table in our foyer. I think we look pretty good, like a toothpaste ad. I don't think we look this good in real life.

They tried to take some pics of just the kids at the end, but Liam was having nothing to do with it. Here's the best one of those, but we decided not to get any prints of these.

Gratitude - The Word of the Day

Gratitude is the word of the day. I've been thinking about having gratitude as I was listening to the Morning Coach podcast this morning and it was an older one talking about that topic and how having gratitude can really turn your perspective around. I think gratitude is what gets me through tough times. I'm grateful to be smart that when work issues or home issues come up that I know I'm smart enough to be able to deal with it. With both work and home, I am grateful to work and live with such awesome people that get things done and are supportive and helpful. And I'm grateful to go home to people who all love each other unconditionally. I am blessed with some really really good friends who would do anything for each other as well as forgive each other for our faults, LOL. So lots of things are stressful right now, but I'm just so blessed and happy because I have such gratitude for who I have in my life and the mental faculties I've been blessed with to…

Keeping the Momentum

I'm very proud of my progress this week. Both yesterday and today I've woken up earlier than usual and worked out on the elliptical machine. I got a bunch of herbs planted this week and I've fertilized the garden. I've been drinking lots of water. I've been keeping lists of things I want to do in the evening and I've been getting a lot of them done, which is so much better than having no plan and getting nothing done. I'm working hard not to burn out by not taking any rest time, so I've been trying to catch up on other blogs and find some new ones. I've been eating healthy and trying to do little things to keep the house tidy, even though work is stressful. I think it's one of those things I'm realizing is that even if work is stressful, it's relaxing if I haven't let the house go to hell in a hand basket.

Right now, I want to go clean out my fridge, put together a menu plan and decide some new recipes to try over the next we…

Point to Point - Winterthur 2011

We had a great day on Mother's Day and Phoebe had lots of fun taking pictures during our full day outing at Winterthur's annual Point to Point steeplechase horse races. It's a day to dress up, wear fancy hats, drink wine, eat cheese and crackers, see the fabulous sights, let your kids run wild in the open fields and eventually watch some horses race. Here's some great pics Phoebe took during the day.

I love this sweet picture she took of Liam!

One of the hat sellers in case you couldn't find one before the day:

The boys took pony rides with Daddy walking next to them. Here's Tommy who really enjoyed the ride a lot! We couldn't get a good photo of Liam on the pony.

Here we are walking around with the boys in their stroller. My chardonnay is in the orange cup and DH's ice water is in the blue. Must have plastic wine glasses when tailgating with wine.

Here's my sister-in-law, the kids Aunt Niki and her boyfriend Chris. Don't they look smashing!

Still Getting Back on Track

So I'm still working on getting things done and keeping my motivation up. Last night I had to do the bills, which I was a little behind on, but not late on anything. As my daughter likes to say when I say we're running late for an appointment, "Oh Mom, that just means we're right on time." She knows I like to be early for things, so it's funny to see that she notices that. I'm going to keep trying with my Flylady routines, especially trying to get rid of perfectionism. I think that's why I get down on myself sometimes is because I expect that I can do more than I am, which I know is because of perfectionism. Not that I want to be perfect. I tell myself I don't want to be and work so hard to "go with the flow" more than I used to and it's working great. But every once in awhile I get mad with myself because I wish I could have the energy to workout more, be not behind on balancing the checkbook, my house was cleaner, etc. But…

Getting Back to the Joys in My Life

I always have so much to say, but then when I sit down to write, it all leaves my brain. I know I can't tell you all the funny jokes Phoebe has been making about puberty. She cracks me up. She's in the middle of it all right now. Some milestones down, others yet to go. She laughs at it all and is loving every minute of it. She grew 2 inches in 2 months. Back in February she was 4 feet 9 inches. In April we measured her at 4 feet 11 inches! She's tested for her first levels in the US Figure Skating Association, she just had a chorus concert, today is the puberty video at school and in two weeks they have their class trip to the zoo.

I forget about all the funny things about the boys. Tommy was just diagnosed with his fifth ear infection since November. He had an ear infection in all of the following months: November, December, January, March and now May. He's got a consult scheduled with my husband's ENT doctor and he'll probably get tubes in his ea…