Wednesday, October 26, 2011


So I'm not going to go through the hoopla of explaining why or where I've been, but I've been pretty bad about updating the blog.... What can I say, living life instead of blogging about it has been more important lately.

On that note, we've officially entered my favorite time of the year and I am rushing about decorating the house and carving pumpkins and planning my fall recipes. I'm on the hunt for a new fridge for the garage and just purchased a FoodSaver that I can't wait to try out. My Hubby has also been flexing his caveman provider muscles and has managed to catch close to 30 pounds worth of salmon from our beautiful American River in the past month, hence the FoodSaver to pack away what's left of the catch. He's also been experimenting with our smoker and made an amazing whole smoked chicken last weekend. He's promised me more Salmon so I can't wait to fill the chest freezer with fresh Salmon for winter.

  The babies are growing way to fast, with Capt. Lukey Duke a few months into Kindergarten and Miss Brookie enjoying her one on one time with Miss Carrie at daycare. Pictures to follow of our adventure at the pumpkin patch last weekend :)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

What is wrong with the world today?

I am physically ill. How can someone blatantly murder their child and walk away from our justice system completely unscathed? I can't even put into words the amount of disgust I hold for that piece of trash that I refuse to give the honor of calling by name. I'm ashamed for the members of the jury that just let her walk out of that court room.... Why? There isn't a hell horrible enough for her and I only pray that Kharma will make her pay for her shameful disregard for innocence and the love and mother should hold for her child.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Laguna Beach

On our way back from the Vegas drive, we made a little side trip to Laguna Beach for some ocean and relaxing to the sound of the waves. We had an amazing time.... Our balcony door opened to the crashing waves and we laid a beach towel out and enjoyed quite the room service picnic for dinner :)


Here's a link to the amazing hotel we stayed in. Rooms directly on the beach, amazing restaurant on-site, and the entire place is decorated like a surfer's paradise....

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Day 6 of the Sin City Diet

I am proud and a little astonished to announce that I am 10 pounds lighter as of this morning!!! I'm past the crazy carb and sugar cravings and feel really, really good. Next week marks the beginning of workout time ( I waited until I felt good and alert... Atkins can put you in a sort of funk with flu-like symptoms, ie. sore muscles, fatigue, headaches) and I'm excited and motivated to get up and get moving and watch that scale move! Going to aim for 30-45 minutes on the treadmill followed by 10 minutes of push-ups, crunches, planks, squats and arm workouts with weights. I'm debating staying on Induction (the most restrictive and weight-loss rewarding stage of the diet) for an additional 2 weeks, so 4 weeks total just to see how much I can lose before switching over to the easier, and higher carbs allowed per day stage right before we leave for Vegas. Wish me LUCK!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Day 2 of the Sin City Diet

So far, granted we're still very early in the game, I feel pretty good and the scale showed a 2 pound drop this morning! It's probably just water weight but it's a start. The last time I did Atkins I was much more haphazard about it and pretty much winged it without really researching the diet and reading the book. I was still able to drop a bit of weight but the food just felt so heavy since I was basically only eating protein (no healthy green veggie carbs like the book stresses) and bogging my system down. This time I've read the material and have been pre-packing my meals the night before so I don't really have to think once I get to work, I just grab my pre-made meal or snack and munch away. I also decided that I wasn't going to fill my daily protein allowance with red meat like I did last time. I don't eat much red meat normally so no sense in forcing myself to eat something all the time that I don't like very much :) I stocked up at Costco this weekend on lean ground turkey and salmon and am on the hunt today at Trader Joe's for nitrite-free lunch meat to fill any gaps while at work. I'm also picking and choosing my full fat condiments carefully since I'd rather get my fats from avocados, olive oil and fatty fish than from butter and full fat mayo. My only full fat total indulgence is Philly cream cheese since I adore it and usually only buy the low fat or fat free version... I'm going to get my butt back on the treadmill tonight and try to incorporate a 30-45 minute walk in every day for the first 2 weeks and then kick it up to a jog for the following weeks.

My menu for today:

* Breakfast *
2 scrambled eggs with mushrooms, spinach, and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese

* Snack 1*
1 cup of English cucumber rounds & cream cheese

* Lunch *
4 oz. Baked salmon with lemon pepper, & asparagus

* Snack 2 *
Mini Tillamook "Tilla-Moo" cheddar cheese, broccoli florets & blue cheese dip

* Dinner *
Roasted chicken breast, sauteed spinach w/ garlic & lemon juice

All in all sounds super yummy, totally satisfying and crave-worthy :)

Sunday, March 27, 2011

I HATE diets...

I may hate them, but I definitely need to be on one right now... The winter is always time for tons of baked goodies from the oven, thick sauces and gravies and everything comfort. This equates to an additional poundage that starts to make me feel like I'm dragging and drowning in my skin by almost spring. One of my very good friends is getting married in Vegas in May and I need a solid kick in the ass to fit into my lovely dress and feel comfortable rockin' it in Sin City. So, effective tomorrow morning, I'm officially on Atkins Induction for the next 2 weeks, maybe longer. The last time I followed the diet I wasn't really committed to it but was still able to lose about 15 pounds. This time, I've planned ahead, purchased all of my lean proteins and healthy green veggies and am going to see this through to the day we leave for Vegas. Don't get me wrong, I want to be leaner and firmer but mainly I just want to feel good in my skin. I'm not a girl obsessed with the scale nor do I really care how others see me, but I feel slow and self-conscious and I don't like it. Cheers to lean protein and healthy vegetarian carbs and a little less wiggle!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sunday To Do List

Sundays are my day to cook.... I usually make some kind of soup and I try to prep my lunches, and a few for the Hubs, for the following week. I used to neurotically plan out 7 dinners for the following week but realized after wasting quite a few meals that our life sometime doesn't follow my color-coded plan. Now, I plan for 4 meals for the work week including 1 basic recipe that can change to accommodate the left overs on hand and 1 night for "clean out the fridge dinner." Basically anything leftover from the previous days goes into a bowl and that's dinner :) The last night is usually breakfast for dinner or delivery pizza to give us a break.

On tap for today:
   * All veggie Minestrone soup for the week (clean out the veggies heading south)
   * Green eggs and ham roll-ups for me for the week (egg and pureed garlic spinach    crepe/omelet wrapped around a turkey sausage and a sprinkle of cheddar)
   * Already made biscuits and gravy for Sunday sleep-in late breakfast :)
   * Cranberry & Almond Granola for the kiddos to snack on all week
   * Turkey, ham, spinach and Havarti roll-ups for lunch with leftover soup

** What are you doing with your lazy Sunday? **

Friday, March 18, 2011

Ready for Spring

Maybe it's the rain, the cold weather, but I am so READY for Spring... Ready to re-plant our garden and make meals from our harvest, ready for BBQ and picnics in the backyard... Ready for evening walks ans planning camping trips. Don't get me wrong, I love the cold windy rain of winter and blaring my oven for a few months but I think I'm over it. I've already set my planting list and just waiting for the last blast of cold weather to ring in a long weekend of getting my hands dirty. There are many things I need to get done this Spring including a major cleanup of our toy room and the kiddos closets... It's crazy how fast they grow. We've also got 2 weddings lined up in the next 6 months including one in VEGAS. Is it totally lame that I'm almost 30 and have never been to Vegas? I know it sounds crazy but Vegas without the kids sounds like a little too much for us. We're home bodies and we've been that way since we got together. We don't enjoy going to clubs and bars together since it's just a chance for problems and it's way more fun to be home curled up on the couch with homemade mac n' cheese and Toy Story 3. Maybe before I had kids Vegas would have been a crazy weekend, but now it's kinda like walking into a war zone. Too many overly-drunk people, too many chances for crazy crap to happen and far to much risky business for our happy little life. We'll go, driving in our rented mini van, man we're cool, but I doubt we party very hard.... I can't even stay up past 11 without yawning every 5 seconds. Cheers to a happy, quiet life :)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Presidents' Day

I was lucky enough to snag 4 tickets and a parking pass to take the monkeys to go see Disney on Ice and they had a blast! Amazing how expensive everything would have been if we had paid for the tickets ($69 each for 3 of us!), the parking ($10) and then all of the overpriced goodies inside... We even got to sit in a suite so the view was incredible... Brook spent the majority of her time teetering on my lap while trying to jump the rail and bum rush Minnie Mouse. Every time Minnie would get to our side of the rink Brook would scream and wave at the top of her lungs, "Hi Miiimi! Hi! Hi Miiiiimiiiii!!!" It was so frigging cute. They spent the end of the show inhaling a bottomless carton of popcorn with Mikey ears on their heads swaying and rocking to the music.... Oh to be a child again :)

Monday, February 7, 2011

Super Bowl 2011

Did anyone else notice that all of the stations other than the one running the game yesterday weren't allowed to say "Super Bowl?" How silly is that?

 Anyway, the game was awesome and the food was plentiful and grubworthy :) Turkey chili and all of the fixins, baked ziti, buffalo chicken dip, chips, salsa & guacamole, salami & jalapeno roll ups, you name it we had it!

  Hoping for my vodka & cran hangover to go away so I can sort-of enjoy my Monday!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Happy, Happy 2nd Birthday Miss Brookie!!!

 Happy birthday my funny-faced little love :) 2 years ago we dropped Bubba off to daycare and you were born just a few hours later!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Why I love this time of year

The holidays are over allowing me to breathe in the cold wet air and cook my heart out. My mother instilled in me at a very young age that cooking a meal for your family is love at it's purest form. Caring about every little detail, making sure the seasoning is right no matter that it may take hours and your picky children my push it away, wrinkle their nose and say something to the effect of," why broccoli? You know I hate broccoli!!" Cooking is therapy. Cooking is creative and heartwarming and passionate and emotionally charged. It provides me with a creative outlet to create healthy comforting meals for my family and center myself.

When I moved out of my parents' home and in with my hubby, he actually did most of the cooking. In the beginning I was worried I'd screw up and burn something or make it too salty, etc. It took a lot of practice and a little self-confidence and now I do about 95% of the cooking in our house... Daddy will take about a meal a week to lighten the load for me and allow me an hour to chase the kids around the house or build a fort with them or play legos, which I appreciate immensely.

Though they may grab their nose and refuse to even try my creations occasionally, I know in my heart that the time and energy spent feeding my family meals that I've made is well worth it. Knowing that it didn't come out of a box or from a drive thru window is very comforting and reassuring to me. Don't get me wrong, we do order pizza a few times a month, but I hope to teach my children a love for cooking just like my mother did for me.

Happy Thursday! Go make something yummy!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Just got this from a friend and was the perfect pick-me-up I needed this morning (and my 5 shot latte)!!!


Real Mothers don't eat quiche;
They don't have time to make it.

Real Mothers know that their kitchen utensils
Are probably in the sandbox.

Real Mothers often have sticky floors,
Filthy ovens and happy kids.

Real Mothers know that dried play dough
Doesn't come out of carpets.

Real Mothers don't want to know what
The vacuum just sucked up...

Real Mothers sometimes ask 'Why me?'
And get their answer when a little
Voice says, 'Because I love you best.'

Real Mothers know that a child's growth
Is not measured by height or years or grade.
It is marked by the progression of Mommy to Mom to Mother.

The Images of Mother:

4 YEARS OF AGE - My Mommy can do anything!

8 YEARS OF AGE - My Mom knows a lot! A whole lot!

12 YEARS OF AGE - My Mother doesn't know everything!
14 YEARS OF AGE - My Mother? She wouldn’t have a clue.
16 YEARS OF AGE - Mother? She's so five minutes ago.

18 YEARS OF AGE - That old woman? She's way out of date!

25 YEARS OF AGE - Well, she might know a little bit about it!

35 YEARS OF AGE - Before we decide, let's get Mom's opinion.

45 YEARS OF AGE - Wonder what Mom would have thought about it?

65 YEARS OF AGE - Wish I could talk it over with Mom.
The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure she carries, or the way she combs her hair.

The beauty of a woman must be seen from in her eyes,
Because that is the doorway to her heart,
The place where love resides.
The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mole,
But true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul.
It is the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she
Shows, and the beauty of a woman with passing years only grows!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree

This is what I get when I ask my kiddos to pose for our Christmas card... Notice the nudity! Thank God for creative cropping!


Christmas Decorating -- The Lights

I wasn't able to get many photos as our area went through a few doozy storms and we managed to get the outside lights up just in time for a nasty rainstorm to hit annd send us running inside :)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Lukey Duke's Birthday Party

Luke's birthday was wonderful and I think that everyone had a blast, especially the adults! We were all sore the following day from jumping all over the place and it was nice to not have to clean up after the party for once :)