Wednesday, August 27, 2008

handmade (and not by you) april

I think scrapbooks are so pretty. Only problem---no way I'm going to scrapbook. My solution? Etsy!

I would buy this one in a heartbeat if I had 120 bucks to spend on whatever I wanted. *Where is my 2nd economy stimulus check! haha. Maybe my husband will read this and surprise me with it for Christmas....*hinthint* (Although I probably have a better chance of Santa reading this than my husband, lol)

And acually stampingirl2's entire shop has the cutest stuff in general.

Paperbag scrapbooks are really cute too, and not as expensive. But they aren't acid free so pictures will fade over time.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

mom mood april

We all have those days. You know the ones I'm talking about. The ones where you really need a b.r.e.a.k. I just wanted to share a couple things that I do to help.

I have a smoothie everyday-with ground flax seed. I thought it was so weird that I always felt better when I had my smoothie. Then I read that omega-3's protect against depression and flax seed is an excellent source for that good fat. (Oprah's Dr. Oz says that it must be ground or be an oil for you to really absorb all it's goodness).**

I love a good shower. When I need to relax, I plug in the monitor during my daughter's nap, and I just go sit down and let the hot water wash over me. I don't bother washing my hair or anything. I just sit and try to think about nothing. I guess it's my meditation.

I really think every mom needs to get away. Not only does it help you get a little adult time, but it feels so good to return home to my little girl who has a giant smile on and is so excited to see me. I go to yoga once a week and right now I'm taking a knitting class too.

What do you do to help boost your mood?

**my green smoothie recipe
1/2 an apple (for sweeter smoothie-use entire will make make a very large smoothie then)
1/2 cup kale
1 banana
1/2 cup rice milk
1/2 cup water
1 Tablespoon flax seed
a few cubes of ice
blend until smooth

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

End of summer giveaway! - poofy tutu

We thought it would be fun to do the occasional giveaway on this blog.

All you have to do is leave a comment on this post and I'll use a random selector tool to pick a winner. Winner will be picked when school starts (aka September 2nd), so make sure you check back to see if you won! Want TWO entries? It's easy, just leave a shout out on your blog about our contest. But make sure you let us know you did, so you can get credit for both entries.

Up for grabs this month is a super poofy, handmade tutu. It's got an elastic waistband cut to about 20 inches around, so it'll likely fit a 2-8 year old depending on her size.

Our models are ages 5 and 7. And for the record, I put it on my 2 year old son to check fit, (it fits him too) but I didn't take pictures because...well, because he's a boy. lol.

Good luck!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

kid friendly Yakisoba

Yakisoba is my favorite meal. I was wanting some, but I didn't think my kids would eat it. My oldest is the pickiest kid, EVER. #2 and #3 aren't as bad, but #3 literally throws up if he doesn't like something. (gag reflex) One time some friends were over and they brought lemon bars. #3 tried one and vomited. The husband turned to his wife and said "Wow, I've never actually seen someone throw up from your cooking before!" lol.

So today, I did a little experiment to make Yakisoba more kid friendly. I went from memory for part of it and looked up a few different recipes online for the sauce and cut and combined til I saw something I thought looked good. This is what I ended up with and it was quite yummy!

Store bought Yakisoba noodles (I got them at Costco and used 1 of the 2 packages)
Broccoli Florets
Chopped Cabbage
Shredded Carrots
Snap Peas

1 2/3 cup water
1 tsp chicken bouillon powder
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp garlic powder or 2 cloves garlic

Mix the sauce ingredients and set it aside.

Stir fry the chicken, add the broccoli and snap peas. Continue to stir fry. Add the cabbage and carrots, keep stir frying. Add the noodles and sauce and stir fry til it's all hot.


Everyone enjoyed it. Nobody threw up. My oldest even said "mmmmmm" and THAT is a hard thing to get out of him. Granted, he only ate the noodles, but still! This is an accomplishment!

And the whole thing is quite simple. That's my requirement.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

favorite cleaning rachel

I do not like sweeping. In fact you can be safe to say that I hate sweeping. I also have hardwood floors, which require alot of sweeping. My savior in this hatred is my Black and Decker handheld vacuum. Its very powerful, gets the dust bunnies like a champ and I complete my job in half the time.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008 april

I know it's not Thanksgiving yet, and most of you probably don't have pie on your mind. But pie is so much better with fresh fruit so I wanted to post this recipe while the peaches and blackberries are perfect for freezing. My mother created this recipe and I honestly haven't met anyone who didn't fall in love with it right away.

Peach Blackberry Pie

Prepare your favorite pastry. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Combine 3/4 to 1 C sugar, 3 T all-purpose flour, 1/4 t ground nutmeg or cinnamon (I use cinnamon always), and a dash of salt. Add to 4 C sliced peaches and 1 C blackberries; mix. If using frozen fruit you can thaw it or just leave it frozen and add a little time for cooking. To keep the crust from getting too brown if using frozen fruit just put tin foil on edges once it gets some nice color. Line 9 inch pie plate with pastry; fill. Dot with 2 T butter or margarine. (Dash with extra spice if desired.) Adjust top; seal; crimp edges, cut slits in top if not doing a lattice top. Bake in hot oven for 45-50 minutes or until done.

(If you thaw out your fruit, don't drain the juice.)

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Wolves vs. april

I know I can speak for my sisters when I say Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer is amazing. I am sure that if you've read the previous books in the series, you are reading or have finished Breaking Dawn. If you haven't read the series I highly recommend starting out at the beginning with Twilight. The series is a love story between a teenage mortal and a vampire-plus so much more. I would go so far as to say they are the Harry Potter of today, and I do not take Harry Potter lightly. You'll have to read them to find out the details because I don't want to give anything away!

Also, I would just like to add that my husband is a wolf. He is strong-but not in that stone kind of way, hairy, and is so nice to snuggle up to on a cold night to get warm. I'm curious what the men are in your life? It's wolves vs. vampires!

carrot april

I made this carrot cake for my husbands birthday. This will be the recipe we use from now on. We loved it! (I couldn't eat the frosting because of the dairy but it was still delicious with it cut off.) I used apple sauce instead of all the oil called for and cut the sugar in the frosting down and added a little extra carrots to get it healthier.


4 eggs
3/4 C vegetable oil
1/2 C applesauce
1 C white sugar
1 C brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 C all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 1/4 C grated carrots (2 lbs.)
1 C chopped walnuts

frosting ingredients:

1/2 cup butter, softened
8 ounces lowfat cream cheese, softened
3 cups confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9x13 inch pan.
2. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, applesauce, sugar,and 2 t vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Stir in carrots. Fold in walnuts. Pour into prepared pan. (Be careful not to overmix or the cake will fall a little in the center. A little lumpy is good.)
3. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
4. To make Frosting: In a medium bowl, combine butter, cream cheese, confectioners sugar, and 1 t vanilla. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Frost the cooled cake.