Monday, December 23, 2013

Vacation- Day 1 (Heaven help me)

So here we are, the first official day of school vacation.  Annnd, its pouring out.  Not very Christmas-y if you ask me.  I would almost rather (dare I say it?) snow. Eek, I said it.  It's kind of like mentioning He who must not be named, aka Voldemort (I'm not scared) for Harry Potter.  I don't really want it to snow, I would just rather it not be pouring rain all day when I am trapped home, uh I mean spending quality time with, all three kids.  Which brings me to the homeschooling folks.  Kudos to you all. I would lose my gosh darn mind if I spent all day every day with the little cherubs.  School = Sanity in this house.  The morning here started abruptly at 7am.  Well, that is after an initial wake up from the baby when Daddy's alarm went off at the painful hour of 5:way too early to be up O' clock. You know, 7 am, the time when I normally wake the kids up for school and they whine and complain about how mean I am and how awful school is and how very very tired they are.  Well I will give credit to the oldest for staying in bed till the more pleasing time of 7:30.  But the younger two were up, so I was up. Barely.  Now I know some of you would consider 7am "sleeping in", and
I would have as well when Andrew was waking up at 6am everyday, but now that we get to sleep later I have become accustomed to it.  We had also kept the kids up late last night to watch the first half of The Sound of Music.  I think we all know that the later they stay up the earlier they tend to wake up.  It's a cruel world.  After a quick shopping trip for the last few items on my list today (shout out to Grandma for coming over to watch the kids) I think we are officially in for the rest of the day.  Right now I have the kids watching Rudolph for the first time, and miraculously the baby is napping. That should buy me about 52 minutes of peace and quiet.  Then I will need to think of something else entertaining enough to keep the oldest two from killing each other. Good luck to the rest of my stay-at-homies today! Only about 11 days left till school resumes. : )
..."and mom and dad can hardly wait for school to start again!"

Friday, December 20, 2013

Christmas Movies

Christmas movies. Which are your favorites?  So far this year we have seen Elf on a Shelf about 47 times.  I have to say it started out kinda cute but each time gets a little less extravaganzalorious, if you know what I mean.  I do kind of like the look of horror/fear on my childrens' faces when the kid in the movie touches the elf and causes him to lose his magic and end up at the elf infirmary. ("Dr, his peppermint levels are running low" is my favorite line in that whole movie.)  I could stand to lose the part at the end when the twin sisters sing about the magic of Christmas, or something like that. I will say that the movie has kept my kids from touching the elf (which still remains a giant pain in the butt on my end).  Last week my husband thought it would be cute to put the elf upside down in my salt canister.  Not only did I spill salt everywhere when removing the damn elf, but now I need to replace all the salt. Cute.  Back to Christmas movies- we also watched Home Alone.  That was a last minute decision where Mommy had two margaritas and thought it would be fun to start a movie at 7:30pm instead of putting the kids to bed.  My 6-year-old, Andrew, was slightly horrified when the parents initially forgot Kevin in the house.  He couldn't wrap his head around them leaving him all alone. And I noticed for the first time watching this movie that the Dad really didn't seem all that worried, did he?  I mean he called the neighbors like once, and then pretty much gave up trying to get in touch with him.  Anyway, once Kevin booby-trapped the house and stopped the bad guys (sorry for the spoiler alert but if you haven't seen it by now there is no hope for you) Andrew was cracking up and loved the movie.  We have also seen one of my favorite Christmas movies of all time, White Christmas, twice.  Both times starting in the middle, so I am hoping to catch the beginning some time this season.  What a great movie.  Makes me want to randomly break out into song, learn how to dance, and eat a sandwich (that chick is wayyyy too skinny).  What are your favorite Christmas movies? Leave an answer in the comments! (ya filthy animal!)

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Gingerbread Home For Sale, As Is

FOR SALE- 2013 New Construction, AS IS. 

This beautifully constructed Gingerbread home , located conveniently on the kitchen table, is available for sale, as is. Despite it never being occupied, it will need some improvements. Definitely not in move-in ready condition, this 1bedroom, 0 bath (zero any other rooms really) home will need a new roof in the immediate future. The home is located in a great school district but your children won't be able to get out the front door, as it doesn't actually open. This "fixer upper" would make a great starter home for someone who loves the smell of gingerbread and peppermint. Call your realtor today to take a look at this "diamond in the rough"! With a little TLC you could have this home looking like this is no time at all!


Friday, December 6, 2013

Elf on the Flippin' Shelf

Seasons Greetings Readers!
This is Dodo the elf writing to you from the home of my bitches, I mean host family!  Apparently those middle of the night wake ups, filled with panic that she forgot to move me to a new location, have rendered the real writer of this blog too tired to, well, write.  Funny how a couple mornings of waking up at 6am and sprinting around the house in stealth mode to make sure that I am in some new silly location take a lot out of a person.  Fortunately for her, the man in the house seems to be better about carrying on my Christmas spirit so as not to traumatize the children by letting them find out that this is all just a scam to keep them from acting like little shits during the holiday season. And isn't that what Christmas is all about?  Haha, my author laughs about this whole thing each year as she is on her way to the bank to cash checks.  The stuff these poor parents have to go through is hysterical. I recently heard the woman in this house telling someone that if her elf was touched by a child then they need to get sprinkled with sugar and put in the freezer. Imagine the mess that would make? It was funny at first, the oldest boy in this house was actually afraid to go in the same room as me.  Of course this only applied when I was in the room with the coats and backpacks, and not when I was perched next to the TV. Funny how that worked.  The middle one asked her mom why I haven't been caught eating snacks, like that time last year when I got those delicious raisins and a juice box.  Her mom said that I must not be hungry, but I know that she is just lazier this year.  I've heard her mumble something about setting the bar too high last year.  I personally enjoyed the night I got to hang glide over the kitchen table, but oh well... So anyhoo, back to sitting on top of the kitchen curtain for me
(Really lady? This is the best you could come up with?) watching the kids fight, the dog steal their food right off the table, and is that the Mom opening a bottle of wine?  Again?
Merry Christmas!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Soccer Saturdays

Ahh soccer... Here we are again.  Let's start off with a little back story.  I played soccer.  My husband played soccer. Long ago it was decided that when our kids were old enough, they would play soccer too. It was just assumed. Who doesn't love soccer? Answer - our first child. He let's just say, hates soccer. We tried indoor soccer at a sports center - fail.  We tried indoor soccer at the YMCA - it went a little bit better.  We tried outdoor soccer at the YMCA - we stopped going mid season.  And because we are glutton for punishment and can't learn a lesson we tried town soccer - EPIC FAIL.  So you get it, soccer was out for us.  I will happily report that our child loved basketball and is pretty excited about starting T-ball in a couple weeks, so there is still some hope for sports there.  Now, along comes child number 2, and she is a little soccer star.  Not to brag (okay yes, I am bragging) but she is a natural!  At two and half years old she can dribble the ball and has a pretty good kick too. Not to mention how adorable she looks in the soccer team shirt with matching hair bow and pony tail.  It's all about accessorizing folks.  So to the point of this blog- because I have a two week old baby (#3) at home and there is no more time for lengthy blogs...
Yesterday I went with my hubby and the whole fam to watch #2 play soccer.  She is in a class with about 75 other children ranging from ages 1 1/2 to 3 years old.  It was a bit of a shit show really. It started off really organized and soccer related and by the end the kids were "jumping like a chicken" over a rope ladder and climbing through tubes - not sure what soccer skills they were working on, but needless to say I am moving her up to the next age group for next week's class, one where they actually play soccer (or attempt to) for the majority of the class. She is a soccer super start after all- remember the bragging earlier... : )  So anyway, rambling again, the parents of these little soccer monsters this week cracked me up!  I stood there mentally making fun of them and dividing them up into 5 groups that were particularly interesting to me. After all I had all that free time while my kid was lost inside a tube... So here goes!
1.  The Tanners - No, I am not talking about the Woburn sports team or someone making leather.  This couple was seriously orange.  They were also both only around 5 ft tall and looked rather like oompa loompas - "oompa oompa oompady doo, our kid plays soccer, how about you..."
2. Professional Photographer Mom - Ok people, let's get something straight here, just because you have $600+ to buy a Nikon does not a photographer make you.  I am not trying to deny you the right to take a few pictures of little Johnny in his soccer shirt - I already told you how darn cute they are!  But crouching down on the ground for 90% of the class while your butt is hanging out of your yoga pants so you can snap endless photos of Johnny standing there holding a soccer ball (He isn't sure what else to do since you are too busy "capturing the memories" to help him out) is just kind of obnoxious.
3. David Beckham wannabe Dad -  The class is for the kids, not for you to be taking shots on the kiddie goal trying to relive some lost dream of becoming a soccer player in your own youth.  I see you dribbling the ball around acting all bad-ass when you think no one is looking, but enough now, go get your kid out of the tube he is stuck in - this isn't about you...
4. The "my two year old is beating me up, are there any openings on Maury this week?" Mom -
Now, don't get me wrong, I have dealt with many a tantrum in my day.  Like I said, I have three kids myself so this isn't my first rodeo folks, but hell would freeze over before I stood on a soccer field letting my two year old child beat the crap out of me.  This woman was getting head butt, punched in the face/chest, and basically whooped up on by a 3 foot tall, 30 pound little monster.  For pete's sake, go drag that little kid off the field and go the heck home for the day, clearly soccer is the least of your problems!
5. The baby wearers - I have nothing against baby wearing, these moms were just a little to "mommy-ish' for me to want to associate with. Sounds awful I know... But they were both discussing the baby wraps, names, birth weights, blah blah blah, and looking around for other moms of newborns to suck into the conversation.  Is it wrong that I pushed the car seat containing my newest little bundle to the side because I didn't want to get roped into the diaper conversation myself? After all I needed to make sure my kid came out the end of the damn tube she was stuck in! : )

-- Well it only took a year, but I am back!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

35 Quick and Easy Dinner Ideas

Have you ever sat down to make a grocery list and drawn a blank?  It happens to me almost every single time.  This is usually how it goes - I grab a pen and paper and set out to make the grocery list, attempting to make one trip to the grocery store for the week (HA!).  I usually ask Ed what he wants for dinner that week, and he either says, "Hmmm, I don't know.... or he says, "BBQ meatballs."  The meatballs are something I made for him back in 2004/2005, and never since.  Not because they aren't good but because I don't really like meatballs and it is isn't fun to make something that you don't want to eat at the end.  Does that make me selfish?  Anyway, I come up with one or two ideas and then grab some cookbooks to peruse, usually while children are asking me for things, or trying to rip out pages of the cookbook, and by the time I get the list made and actually get to the grocery store, I am in No Mood. 
So, I decided to put one of my Pinterest ideas to good use, and with some index cards, an idex card box, pen, and roughly 2 hours of my time I made a "Dinner Ideas Box."  Here is the visual: 

On each card I wrote the name of the meal, and the ingredients that I would need to buy at the store.  I didn't include ingredients that I usually have on hand, like salt and pepper, olive oil, etc...  I also color coded them: Pink (Beef), Blue (Pork), Yellow (Chicken), Purple (Pasta), Green (Everything Else.)
Oh, and I guess you are wondering how I came up with so many ideas when that is normally the hard part.  Well, for some reason it was so much easier when I was just sitting there watching tv and thinking about what some of my favorite foods are.  I asked Ed and Andrew what they like for dinner and added those meals to cards.  Over the course of the night I had come up with a pretty substantial list!  And since I am a nice person I thought I would share my list with you!  I am just giving the meal ideas, because most of the recipes are common sense or things you might already have your own recipe for.  I will include links/recipes for a couple of the more specific things.  Here you go!

Bacon Guacamole Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Parmesan Crusted Chicken Breast
Broccoli/Sausage/Pepperoni Calzones
Veggie/Chicken Quesadillas with a side salad
Minestrone Soup with salad and bread
Pancakes and Bacon
Baked Ziti Casserole (Think lasagna but with Ziti pasta)
Ritz Cracker crusted chicken with Mashed Potatoes
Homemade Chicken Fingers with French Fries or Tater Tots
Roasted Vegetable and Mozzarella Sandwiches with Sweet Potato Fries
Pastrami Sandwiches with Pasta Salad
Raviolis with Bread and Caesar Salad
Chicken and Stuffing Casserole (made with sour cream and Mushroom Soup)
Teriyaki Chicken over Brown Rice
Chicken Enchiladas
Beef/Chicken Tacos
Grilled Chicken marinated in Italian Dressing
English Muffin Pizzas
Spaghetti with Meatballs or Sausage
Pan Fried Pork Chops with Gravy
Chicken Ziti Broccoli
Stuffed Peppers and Cornbread
Chicken Fried Rice and Salad
Fettucine Alfredo and Garlic Bread
Grilled Steaks with Carmelized Onions
Crockpot Taco Chicken (Chicken breast, jar of salsa, packet of Taco Seasoning - Low 6-8 hours and then shred.  Serve as tacos, taco salad, burritos...)
Crockpot Pork Chops (Boneless center cut Pork Chops, 1 envelope onion soup mix, 1 1/2 cups chicken broth, 1 can cream of chicken soup, 1 packet of pork gravy mix - Low 6-8 hours)

Well there you have it!  Now there is no excuse for you not to know what to put on your meal list this week. : )

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Parenting 101

A couple years ago my sister gave me these magnets as part of my Christmas present.  They are instructions on what to do, and not do, with a baby.  They are pretty darn funny.  They came up in conversation last night with friends and I pulled them out of a (very messy) drawer and we all had a good laugh passing them around the room.  It made me want to share them with you.  I'm not sure why I just told you that the drawer was very messy, other than the fact that it is really really messy, and I have a little guilt about not cleaning it out.  Maybe I will get to that this week.  Maybe.   

If you already have a baby, there are some very helpful tips for you.  If you don't have a baby yet, keep this email around for when you do, just so you don't forget anything.  And even if you aren't the baby type - I guarantee you will still get a laugh.  (I don't know how I would actually guarantee this - it's not like I can give you money back or anything since the blog is free...I guess I am just that SURE that you will think they are as funny as I do!)

So it is a-OK to lift your baby up above your head (just watch out for the baby puke in your open mouth situation), but not OK to rocket launch your newborn into the air like some sort of projectile.

I once saw a dad, in the Target portrait studio, pick up his child's dropped bottle off of the filthy floor, lick it to "clean' it, and then take a swig (I am assuming to remove any germs that were inside.)  He apparently had not seen this before.

I'm not sure what is wrong with this one, unless maybe the coffee wasn't decaf?...  Because of course you would never give caffeine to a newborn, everyone knows that.  (Disclaimer - I would NEVER give hot liquids of any kind to a baby or small child. Maybe she should try iced coffee?  Decaf of course.)

Random stranger as a babysitter- never a good idea.

This one is funny and kinda horrifying at the same time.  I would suggest just letting the baby run/crawl naked around the house until they air dry.

Now, having two kids myself and knowing the kind of desperate diapers situations you can find yourself in, I find it hard to judge on this one.  If you really had NO other wipes left, a skirt might be your only option.  I am pretty sure you have to be a parent to understand how rubbing feces on your clothing could ever even be considered an option.

I wish I could tell you where to find these handy little magnets, but with them being a gift, I have no idea myself.  I hope you got a laugh out of them!