Finally Recess
Time to sit back and have a cup of coffee

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Rolling and the A says A

So Brent is officially rolling all over the place. He can easily make it from one end of the room to the other. He also army crawls already. I even have another witness who saw him "crawling". I was shocked myself. I've seen evidence of him crawling but until tonight I hadn't seen him do it. He is only 5 months, so why is he already moving? He is eating like a horse too, his little hands flail around to get my attention for more food. He also grabs at the bottle and practically holds it himself.

Caitlyn knows that a says a (short vowel). She will tell you this as many times as you ask, actually she will holler this at you. She is very excited about it. She took a pen and wrote an a on her belly tonight too. Well she thinks it's an a, actually quite close to the look of an a. She sometimes knows that b says ba. She is getting so smart!

Well Jeff was supposed to start his new hours this week and he did but the new hire has had the flu so he's been working 9-8, grrrr! But we get to go to the Mavericks this weekend, that is if we can get a sitter. Any takers?

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Full Weekend

This weekend we had my parents in town and had fun hanging out with them. Caitlyn really enjoyed having her mimi and papa here too. It's always fun to play with someone besides mom.

My grandmother had a pacemaker put in on Friday, so my parents came down to be with her.

Brent had a fever Thursday and Friday, it got as high as 102 degrees. Thankfully he is better now and slowly starting to get his appetite back.

I got Caitlyn's Easter dress tonight. I'm so excited to have it done early. I even know what Brent will wear too.

I have 2-3 drawers to finish in my kitchen but otherwise it is all reorganized. I've found several ways to get more room too. I'm going to post before and after pictures this week.

Jeff gets to start his new hours this week and will be home with me in the evenings. I won't know what to do with myself. We haven't been together for dinners for 2 years, well at least not on a regular basis. I'm so excited! I know it will be good for both Caitlyn and Brent.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Sitting Up

Brent sat up again yesterday and today and I got it on camera. He is still leaning or propping himself on something in the front, but he can do it solo for mere seconds. He has even caught himself to keep from falling. And check out those cute, fat legs!

Today I stayed home from school because I had fever again last night. Besides being tired I feel like I'm getting better - yeah! Since I was feeling better I decided to tackle my kitchen. I have been wanting to reorganize it for awhile now. Over at organizing junkie, she is encouraging everyone to organize their kitchens this month. So I took all my before pictures.

Here is Caitlyn playing in her new found "fun" place.

So I have one cabinet finished and 13 to go. Of course I had to stop to feed the kids and play with the kids. Now I wish I hadn't started today. But my plan is to finish American Idol in the kitchen and tackle another couple cabinets.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Sick day

Today I came home sick from work at about 10:30 am. I had a fever and major chills. I went by the office and Jeff tested me for strep, but I'm clear. I needed to know ASAP so I could decide if I would need a sub for tomorrow, and if all goes well I should be able to return. Luckily the kids had the day off, so I didn't have to get anything ready to go home.

Caitlyn was such a sweetie tonight. We laid on the couch, in the dark and watched the end of The Incredibles and Diego. She is growing up so much and becoming super helpful, well except when she hit Brent square on the head when he was sleeping in my arms. I quickly moved him to his safe place (Crib) and he is still sleeping now.

This morning was last morning to nurse him, he still wanted a bottle, so we will move on the next stage. He is so hungry at each meal, that he is up to 3 jars of food today that we must mix with cereal to fill him up. He is eye-ing the table food, big time! You should see his waistline!!!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Our Weekend

This weekend was not too awfully exciting. Caitlyn has had a temp. since Thursday, but seems to be better today (Sunday). Brent is eating like a horse, 3 jars of food a day. He is such a happy baby, I laid him in his crib to change him tonight and he was laughing the whole time. He can sit up by himself. It is still at the stage where he is leaning forward a great deal and balancing himself with his hands in front of him, but still - sitting up! He is growing so fast, especially his tummy!

I got to stock up at Costco this evening. That store is so much fun and I kept my eyes on my list and did very well. However, on the way home I started feeling yucky, so I'm going to go to bed early and get some rest.

I did buy my paint for the kitchen, living room and entry and master bath. I can't wait to get it on the walls. My other project is to reorganize my kitchen. Over at she is having a different them each month and this month is the kitchen. Unfortunately I haven't gotten started but I am a procrastinator, so it wouldn't be fair to myself if I started early, right? At least I have my ideas in mind and will know exactly where to start when it is time.

BTW, I wanted to share what a sweet husband I have. For the big Vday he sent my teammates and me lunch and got me the sweetest card ever. I looked at it again today! He will be working 9-6 starting next Tuesday - Friday and long hours still on Mondays. I can't wait to have dinner with him on a regular basis!

Oh yeah, I had to buy another package of bread tonight, the dogs ate a new loaf the very next day. I think we've learned our lesson to not leave it on the counter! We're old and slow, okay?

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Wonder Bread Dogs

I came home today to find 4 packages of bread on the floor, minus the bread. Those stinkers! They even ate my cinnamon bread. Needless to stay they had to stay outside for a LONG time tonight. I didn't want to take any chances. They haven't been begging for food though, so that's a plus.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

Monday - Eat with friends

Tuesday - Toasted Tuna Sandwiches and cucumbers

Wednesday - Pesto Chicken (courtesy of Organizing Junkie herself)

Thursday - Stuffed Spud Soup

Friday - Pizza Bubbles

Saturday - Left overs

Sunday - Smothered Enchilada's

Big Weekend

We had a great weekend. My parents came down because Brent Tyler was dedicated this Sunday. We had a really great visit. My mom wasn't feeling 100% but seemed to get better over the course of the weekend.

During Brent's dedication, Caitlyn kept "getting" Jeff. She'd say, "I get your ears" "I get your nose". He kept laughing which of course eggs it on and she was laughing. I didn't really notice any of this except the laughter. He finally put her down and she decided to crawl up the stage, luckily Jeff was able to grab her quickly. Fun times.

We didn't go all over town this time, which was so nice. We usually tend to pack in 101 things to do with very little time. My mom helped me pick out colors for my kitchen and living room. I also picked out my master bath and bedroom colors too, now I just have to paint. My parents also babysat while Jeff and I went to dinner on Saturday night. We didn't have to worry about being back at a certain time to relieve the babysitters either (as they could crawl in bed at anytime and they were very cheap too, but good!)

Brent rolled over Sunday night from his back to his tummy. Let's just say - it's on now! It's bitter sweet, I want him to move and crawl and reach milestones - but I wan't him to stay my baby forever too.

This weekend I had a huge crate full of grading to do. I never bring home papers to grade, so it was unfortunate that I was behind and grades were due this weekend, especially with my parents being in town. Jeff helped me grade on Sunday night and then the kids helped me grade with the last few papers today in class, so thankfully I'm caught up again.

I am so tired lately, I remember standing at the sink this weekend and thinking I need to do this, this and this - oh my gosh, I'm never going to get take a nap. Except if you are like me you schedule in naptime for yourself and let the other stuff slide. But I'm tired again. I didn't want to go to the gym but I knew I had to. In fact, on the way to the gym I pondered this thought, "What if I pulled up to the gym, crawled in the back seat and took a nap! Would that qualify as going to the gym?"

Tax season is upon us, we go tomorrow morning and I hope our accountant doesn't suggest that we have another child to keep from paying more taxes? Hehehehe! He wouldn't dare!!!!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Stocking up in the Pantry

I am not an expert on how to stock your pantry, but I do have a friend down the street that is. So I thought I'd take a moment to post on the subject so I can refer back to it when I need to.

My friend, Julea, must have 6 or 8 (I can't remember the exact number) cans of green beans, corn, macaroni and cheese, etc in her pantry at all times. She's funny like that, but she is on to something. She can plan any meal at a moment's notice, no matter the number of guests that drop by.

So here is how it's done, and brace yourself, it is very easy. First make a list of recipes that your family eats on a regular basis. This step alone is awesome for meal planning, grocery shopping and for those nights when you have no idea what to eat and you can think of anything. Then go through each recipe, and list all the ingredients in each recipe. This will be your master list.

I noticed when making my list that many of my recipes had the same ingredients: cream of chicken soup, Rotel, cheddar cheese, tortillas, celery, etc. Then I divided my list by items that can be purchased at Costco and the grocery store. This can even be broken down into every week list (milk, eggs) and every two weeks.

The last step is to go through your breakfast foods, snacks, etc and add them to the list. We also included paper towels, paper plates, etc. When you want to plan your trip to Costco you can go through this list and only get what you need for your household, which helps to stay on budget.

You still have to make a grocery list each week but this master list is awesome. It has made my life so much easier, since teaching again and raising kiddos. If I don't menu plan for the week I can still look in my pantry and put together a meal easily (well if I have the energy).

Thank you Julea for my new system! You rock.

So what are your tips for the pantry/frig? I always love new tips.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Stuffed Spud Soup

When Jeff was in school out of state, I got the chance to live 10 minutes away from my aunt who is close in age. I would go over regularly for dinner because it seemed my husband was always studying, hunting or in school. Mostly the first and latter while we were there.

Anyhoo, she fixed an amazing soup and to top it off it was super quick and delicious.

Sara's Stuffed Spud Soup

2 lbs. frozen hash browns, thawed
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1 cup chopped green onions
1 can cream of chicken soup
3-4 cups half-n-half or milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
salt and pepper to taste
parsley flakes or chopped chives for garnish

Saute onions in butter. Add soup, milk and thawed potatoes. Stir in cheese and heat gently. Garnish and serve. Serves 8-10.

This recipes is great for those nights when you forget to thaw out meat and I usually let mine thaw for all of 5 minutes. Just pound it on the counter top to relieve stress and break the hash browns apart and you are ready to go.


Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Classrooms have come a long way

I rarely speak about my classroom, mainly because of privacy issues, but I can tell you this. I have this new machine in my room, actually a piece of technology that is so awesome.

I'm sure you are very familiar with an overhead projector. When using the OP you have to make transparencies, which are costly and messy.

I now have a Dukane Elmo. It is similar to the OP but it shows color and you don't need transparencies. You can put a book, your hand, a newspaper, alphabet magnets, math manipulative's, etc. and see it on the big screen. It is so cool.

These machines have been around for awhile because I had one in my classroom when I taught at White Rock, 2000 or 2001??? But we only had 2 Elmo's for the whole building. We have maybe 2-4 Elmo's at my new school but the exciting news is (drum roll please!!!!!) all teachers will have an Elmo next year. I'm so excited.

Right now I have one of the few Elmo's in my classroom and it is the best teaching aide ever. I can show students exactly what I want, in color, immediately, without preparation.

And....... you can hook your laptop to the Elmo and project that as well. The advantages are endless and our kiddos benefit greatly.

Has anyone heard of this? Have it in your classroom or your child's classroom?

Monday, February 4, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

Monday - Pulled Pork Sandwiches (leftovers from the Super Bowl Party - GO GIANTS)

Tuesday - Stuffed Spud Soup

Wednesday - Dinner at Friends

Thursday - Angel Hair Pasta & Chicken

Friday - Green Chili Enchiladas

Saturday - Leftovers

Sunday - Soft Tacos

So you might have noticed there is no video yesterday. Well, there was when I posted. I even previewed and double checked. So I will have to try again later. I also plan to post recipes for Stuffed Spud Soup and Green Chili Enchiladas later. It is super easy and quick. Stay tuned and have a great week!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

My sweeties on video

I missed the belly laughing, but as soon as I found Caitlyn making Brent laugh I tried to get it on video as quick as possible. She is such a good, big sister!

Superbowl Sunday

We are having friends over this afternoon to watch the Superbowl. I'm so bummed that the Cowboys made it so far, yet not far enough. So I guess I will cheer for the underdogs, the Giants. Except that I always love to cheer for the winning team. I'm so wishy-washy!

Brent laid back chillin' out while his sister entertains him and he eats pears and sweet potatoes. Isn't life goood!

Check out those precious eyes!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Angel Hair Pasta with Chicken

This recipe is pretty quick and healthy.

2 tbsp. olive oil, divided
2 chicken breasts, diced
baby carrots, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
12 ounces angel hair pasta
2/3 c. chicken broth
1 tsp. dried basil
1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese

Heat 1 tbsp. oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add chicken and cook until chicken is cooked through. Remove and drain on paper towels. Heat remaining oil in same skillet. Begin heating water for pasta and cook. Add carrots to skillet; cook, stirring for 4 minutes. Add broccoli and garlic; cook, stirring for 2 min. longer. While pasta is cooking, add chicken broth, basil and Parmesan to skillet. Stir to combine and add chicken. Reduce heat and simmer for 4 minutes. Drain pasta. Serve in large bowl. Top with chicken and vegetable mixture. Serve immediately. Serves 4.

My little girl is THREE!!!

I can't believe it. The time has flown by. It seems like just yesterday that we were being induced to have Caitlyn 2 weeks early. I was quite anxious about having a baby and now I couldn't live without her.

Caitlyn arrived in this world, oh let's say, a little startled. She was delivered at just the right moment; 5:20 on a Saturday, late evening, January 29, 2005. She was not breathing on arrival, but quickly came around. She spent 5 days in the NICU, which seemed like the 5 longest days of my life. Of course, looking back, I should have been resting those last 5 days!!!


This year was a fun year and you learned so many new things. You became more independent and gave up your crib, toddler bed, booster chair for the table, and diapers. You now sleep in a queen size bed (that's our old guest bed), sit at the table in a regular 'ol chair, and wear panties. WOW! Those are big accomplishments.

You also love to play dress up, do art projects and read books.

You will prance around the house in a tutu, with heels and a purse. There are always treasures in your purse too.

One of your favorite things to do is play with Play-dough and you must have mommies cookie cutters and plastic knives for it. You are always making notes for us with pencils and pens and because of that we must watch you closely because sometimes you tend to make them, um, permanent notes. One time I found you with a black Sharpie marker on your face and upon further investigation found that you had drawn all over my piano and piano books. Luckily that is all cleaned up. (I should of taken a picture!)

I am so impressed with your reading abilities. You can read the book Brown Bear, Brown Bear and so many parts of the The Napping House and your Dora and Diego books. You love to have your own book and read along side me at nighttime, although you are really listening to the story I am reading. We have to leave your lamp on so you can read until you fall asleep.

You still have a favorite blankie that you must sleep with but you can have any stuffed animal or baby doll of your choosing for the week. You are so sweet with your animals and dolls. You feed them, change them and even bathe them (sometimes!) You love to push your babies in your doll stroller and they always have a blankie themselves (even makeshift blankies out of napkins).

You have started brushing your teeth on your own, going to the bathroom by yourself, opening the frig (ooh!) and picking out your own sippy cups. You used to throw temper tantrums (I so hope this stays in the past). You CAN (if you choose) clean up your toy room, with assistance. You love to run back and forth across the room (while we are watching), jump on your bed, wave your "magic wand", wear mommies shoes, jump off a counter into my arms, and jump while holding both mom and dad's hands.

Basically you are growing up and doing so many things. I am so proud of you.

Lastly you are such a good big sister. You love your brother so much and are so sweet to him. You run up to him and call him "Little Man". You love to hold him, kiss him, hug him and even squeeze him. Just yesterday I caught you making him belly laugh (I tried to get a video but was too late). He loves you too!

I love you so much and I am so proud of you!.