Thursday, September 29, 2011

Miscellaneous Thursday

Everybody has been under the weather this week, so there's not much new going on. I think we're on the tail end of it and I hope everybody is back to normal in time to enjoy the nice weather we're expecting this weekend.
I booked the boys fall pictures for the end of October. I've been wanting to get some outdoor pictures of the boys, and I think fall is the perfect time. You can visit the photographer's facebook page here. We'll be getting them done on her farm with some fun fall props, like hay and pumpkins. I'm really looking forward to this and I'm having fun picking out the outfits that I want them to wear in the pictures.

I think the boys are getting close to needing just one nap a day and that makes me very sad. I'm not ready for just one nap a day. :( I think Carter will be ready before Evan will be so that means different schedules for a little while, which I'm not looking forward to.

I got an iphone today and I'm super excited. I just wanted a phone with a nice camera on it, and that was the one we decided to get. I'm selling my ipod touch and my small digital camera since I no longer need either of them.

I've already started on my Christmas list and there are several things on there from Etsy as well as a list of all the places I'd love gift cards to. Now, I just need to find 100+ people that want to buy me a christmas gift and I'll be set.

I think I have a serious addiction to buying books. I don't have time to read them, I'm still working on "Redeeming Love" that I started a few months ago. It has over 30 chapters and I'm only reading one every few days. Yet, I still keep buying books. I can't stop. Especially when I'm ordering something on Amazon. All orders that are 25.00 or more get free shipping. So I can not bring myself to pay for shipping when all I have to do is add more items and shipping will be free.

I'm really looking forward to a nice, relaxing evening playing with my iphone, looking at Pinterest, and maybe catching up on some episodes of Teen Mom. I hope the boys sleep good tonight and we all wake up tomorrow rested and feeling 100%.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Fall TV

Fall TV is back, now that I've finally watched the season premiere's of all the shows that I plan on watching this season, I'm going to do a quick recap.

How I Met Your Mother
I love this show, I'll watch every episode until it goes off the air. It's so funny. The season premiere did not disappoint.

The Sing Off
Greg and I have watched this the past two seasons when it was just a 3 week show in December. We love it. But, we hate the crap that goes with a singing type competition show. We tivo this (we tivo all our shows) and fast forward through all the crap. I don't listen to what the judges say most of the time because I really don't care, I don't listen to the bands back stories, or watch them prepping for the upcoming song, I don't watch the 5 minutes it takes Nick Lachey to give the results on which group made the cut. I just watch the singing. There's always a few groups that are amazing, it's entirely accapala, so there's no instruments. I have downloaded songs from each season on my ipod and have already downloaded one from the first epidsode. I'm looking forward to this season, I think it's going to have a lot of really talented groups.

The New Girl
We watched the first episode of this show and it was pretty disappointing. Zooey Deschanel's character is a little too quirky. It's kinda annoying. There were some funny parts (The Douchbag Jar) so I'll give it another try this week, if it's not any better, I will not be watching this show.

I do not like redemption island, I don't like that they're bringing back old players, and I cannot stand Russell's nephew. I'm tired of Russell and his nephew manages to bring him up every 2 seconds. But, no matter how annoying this all is, I will still watch it. I'm hooked on this show.

Up All Night
We've watched two episodes of this show. I love it. I think it's hilarious. I think Maya Rudolph is so funny. Greg on the other hand, does not like it as much as I do. He says that the concept is what we're living right now and he doesn't need to watch a 30 minute show when we're living it. We're going to give it one more episode, if he's not sold, we'll stop watching it and maybe get it on dvd when the boys are a little older.

LOVE this show. It's hilarious. Daniel Tosh is so funny and offensive. I love it. The first show was filmed at ASU since they won the contest he was holding and it was awesome.

Obviously we'll be watching this. Joel Mchale is my favorite. I think this show is quirky in a good way. It's random and very funny. I love it.

We both think Whitney Cummings is hilarious. We loved her on Chelsea Lately and the show is really funny. What's not funny is the laugh track or whatever that happens every single time a joke is made. It reminds me of a cheesy 90's sitcom. I hate that part, and if doesn't get under control, we'll have to stop watching it. It's so distracting.

Blue Bloods
This is my favorite show that we watch. I love cop dramas, and it's been awhile since NYPD Blue and the good Law and Orders. I look forward to this show all week. I love all the characters and the actors/actresses that play them. I really hope this show stays on the air for a long time.

The Soup
I'll watch this for as long as it's on the air. every single week. I've been watching it for years and I love it.

A few shows that I want to watch but we've either got behind or waited so long to start watching that we're going to buy them on DVD: Glee, Modern Family, Parenthood, and The Middle

This looks like a lot of shows, but we tivo everything and watch it the next night, so a 30 minute show is about 20 minutes. It saves a lot of time. And I'm pretty sure a few of these will get dropped before the end of the season (The New Girl)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Picture Dump

I have some random pictures that I've taken throughout the week, so I decided to just do an entire post of them.

The boys have really been into looking out the windows lately. They love to watch things like the garbage man, lawn care services, etc. and I know they want to go outside. It's been rainy all week, so we've been cooped up inside a lot.
Carter watching the lawn care service at the house across the street.
If Evan is eating, then he's a happy boy.

Carter woke up about 45 minutes before Evan one day this week and I let him play in the living room which we normally have blocked off. They both love it in there, but I have to watch them because they like to play in the diaper trash (gross!!).

He learned how to open the dvd player and thought he was something.
Taking a break to dance to some Kesha

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Play Date

Monday, the boys and I had lunch with two of my old co-workers. We had a great time catching up and it was so nice to see them. Unfortunately, I did not get any pictures. :( Tuesday, Greg took the boys to the park while I went to an appointment and then I met him there afterwards. We stayed for quite awhile letting the boys get out all their energy. Today, we were planning on meeting my friend, Robyn and her daughter Aubrey at Yoder's for lunch and to pet the goats, but it was calling for rain. Instead, we met up at my house and let the kids play for awhile and then went out to lunch at a local pizza place.

Aubrey and Evan at the bottom of the stairs

Carter wasn't sure what to think at first, but he warmed up fast. I think he looks so cute here.
We got a feet picture at the kids' first playdate when they were less than a week old, so now it's our thing. :)

Not everybody was excited for the foot picture.

My pictures are all out of order. I love this one of Evan and Aubrey.

So cute!!

We had a great time during our playdate today. It's so nice to have a friend with a kid the exact same age as the boys. And it seems like they're going through the same things about the same time so her and I can always relate to each other. It's nice to share stories and get tips. I look forward to our next playdate.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Pumpkin Cupcakes

I love pumpkins. I love the color, the smell of pumpkin spice candles, pumpkin spice lattes from Starbucks, pumpkin patches--all of it. I love trying new pumpkin recipes in the fall, but most recipes are pretty fattening. I love Gina's Skinny Taste! She posts the best recipes and they're all weight watcher friendly. She breaks down all the nutritional content with each recipe. I've tried several of her recipes and have liked every one, so when I saw these Pumpkin Cupcakes, I knew I had to try them. I made them yesterday and they were so easy. I actually had all the ingredients in my pantry. Everybody loved them. When I make cupcakes or muffins, I will fill a 12 count and 6 count muffin pan with the batter, and whatever i have leftover, I put in my mini muffin pan. The mini cupcakes were the perfect size for Evan and Carter.

*I didn't take a picture of my cupcakes, so here's a picture from her website of how they look**

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Pumpkin Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting

18.25 oz Betty Crocker Golden Vanilla Super Moist Cake Mix
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 cup canned 100% pure pumpkin
1 cup water

For the Pumpkin Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 oz Philadelphia 1/3 fat cream cheese
1/2 cup pureed pumpkin (canned is fine)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
5 tbsp packed brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350°. Line a cupcake tin with cupcake wrappers.
Combine cake mix and pumpkin spice in a large bowl. Add pumpkin puree and water, mix about 2 minutes
Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full and bake about 20 - 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

For the frosting, combine the cream cheese, pumpkin, vanilla, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice and brown sugar until smooth. You can use a spatula to ice the cupcakes or pipe them which may require making more frosting

Monday, September 19, 2011

Goods Sales and Good Naps

The past few days have been wonderful. The weather is perfect, the boys have been in great moods, we've taken them to the park and let them play outside some which we all love, they've been taking GREAT naps, they're sleeping great at night, and they slept until 6:00 on Saturday and 6:15 on Sunday, which was so nice. Normally Greg and I take turns sleeping in, one will get up with the babies on Saturday and  one on Sunday, but since we got to sleep so "late" neither of us needed to sleep in. If you would have told me 2 years ago that I would consider sleeping until 6:00 "sleeping in", I would have never have believed you.

I think the boys look so grown up in their fall clothes.
This is what trying to take a picture of Evan is like. He charges for me as soon as I whip the camera out.

Friday after Greg got off work, we went to Pen Park again. It's so much fun taking the boys outside now. The weather is nice, and now that they're walking it's so fun to watch them get excited and explore things. We found out they love the slide. It's hard to think of them as toddlers that can go down the slide by themselves. I keep thinking of them as my little, itty, bitty, babies. After the park, we went out to dinner for Mexican. The boys were so good while we were out. We ordered some tortillas when we first sat down and let them munch on those until their quesadilla came. They are definitely our children-they love some Mexican food. After we put them to bed we  watched "Letting Everything Go" with Will Ferrell. It wasn't his typical goofy comedy, it was a serious movie with a few funny parts. I liked it, but I pretty much like anything Will Ferrell is in.

Saturday morning, I got up and went to a consignment shop called The Lollipop Shop with my friend. We left our kids with our husbands so we could do some serious shopping. She found some great deals for her daughters, I did not have as much luck finding stuff for the boys. The infant stuff was in great shape and the girls clothes were in great shape, but all the clothes I looked at for the boys looked pretty rough. I think it's probably hard to find used boys clothes that are going to be stained and beat up a little. I know how busy my boys are and how dirty their clothes can get. Also, I found the with the boys clothes, the prices weren't incredible, I'm really good at finding good deals (especially online) at Carters, Old Navy, Kohl's, etc. But, I did get the boys several pairs of shoes, most of them were $3.00 and $4.00 except for a pair of Stride Rites that I got for $8.00. We've been looking at shoes for them lately, and a lot of the ones we like are 12-20.00, so I felt that the shoes were a great deal. I also got a light zip up sweater and a fleece lined, reversible jacket. A collection of Veggie Tales Silly Songs and Kids Sing Alongs on dvd for our upcoming trip to Georgia. And two parenting books for me. (I'm obsessed with parenting books!) Later that day, we ran some errands and looked for some costumes for the boys but weren't able to find anything that we liked. After the boys went to bed, we were able to watch another movie.

Sunday, the boys slept until 6:15 and 6:30. After their first nap, we went to Kohl's to get a few things and then took the boys to the mall to play around in the kids' play area. They had a blast and it wasn't too busy so they were able to explore and do all the things they wanted to do. Later that day we did some grocery shopping and went to Sam's. I tried a new crock pot recipe-orange chicken and it was a disaster. I thought it was so gross, it just tasted like orange juice. The picture that went with the recipe had the chicken looking like it was from a chinese restaurant, and mine didn't look anything like that. Oh well.

The boys at the mall.
This pictures made me laugh. He looks possessed and like he's chasing somebody down.  Him and Carter were squeling and hollering, there's kind of an echo in the mall and it sounds different when you holler in there than when they do at home. It was cute to watch them get so excited about playing there.

Me and the boys have some fun things going on this week, we're meeting an old co-worker of mine for lunch, going to playgroup for the MOMs group, meeting another friend at Yoder's for a playdate, and if the weather cooperates, we'll make a couple of trips to the park this week. This is Greg's short week, he only has to work 4 days and then a 3 day weekend, which I'm looking forward to.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Even More Crock Pot Recipes

I told y'all I was obsessed with my crock pot and I wasn't kidding, I have three more recipes to share. The first one is Baked Potato Soup. I didn't know what to expect, I love baked potato soup, but have only found one recipe to make at home that I really, really like. The problem is that it's pretty time consuming, not hard, just a lot of steps and stuff. This stuff was good, but it wasn't nearly as good as the other recipe I use. But, my standards are a little lower for crock pot recipes than they are for regular recipes. I'll post both for you, if you have the time, make the regular Baked Potato Soup--if you like baked potato soup, then I promise you'll LOVE it!! It's thick and delicious. If you are pressed for time and want to make something simple, quick, easy, and inexpensive, definitely make the Crock Pot Baked Potato Soup

Tony Roma's Baked Potato Soup
1½ hours 1 hour prep

2 medium baked potatoes
3 teaspoons butter
1 cup diced white onions
2 teaspoons flour
4 cups chicken stock
2 cups water
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 cups instant mashed potatoes
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/8 teaspoon thyme
1 cup half-and-half

1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup crumbled cooked bacon
2 green onions, chopped

1. Melt butter in a large saucepan and saute onion until light brown.
2. Add the flour to the onions and stir to make a roux.
3. Add stock, water, cornstarch, mashed potatoes and spices to the pot and bring to a boil.
4. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
5. Cut potatoes in half lengthwise and scoop out.
6. Discard skins.
7. Chop potato flesh into 1/2 inch chunks.
8. Add chopped potato and half and half to the saucepan, bring soup back to a boil, reduce and simmer for 15 minutes.
9. Ladle into bowls, and serve with 1 T. cheese, 1/2 T. bacon bits and 1 t.onion sprinkled on top.


1 30oz. bag of frozen, shredded hash browns {I used Ore Ida}
3 14oz. cans of chicken broth
1 can of cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1/4 tsp. ground pepper
1 pkg. cream cheese {don’t use fat free. It WON’T melt!!!}

In a crockpot, combine everything EXCEPT for the cream cheese. Cook for 6-8 hours on low heat. About 1 hour before serving, add cream cheese and keep heated until thoroughly melted. Serve with cheese, sour cream, bacon bits, green onions, or whatever else you think would be good!!

I also have a crock pot spaghetti sauce recipe to share. I love spaghetti and I'm not picky about my sauce. We always buy the cheap Hunt's cans of spaghetti sauce and we love it. I add a little seasoning when I'm cooking it, but other than that, the can stuff is fine with us. I was excited to make my own spaghetti sauce for the first time. It was easy and turned out really good. It was nice to have the sauce ready to go when we got ready for dinner instead of having to make it right before we ate. Here's the recipe:

Spicy Crock Pot Spaghetti Sauce

8 servings

1 pound spicy sausage (or ground beef)
1 pound regular sausage (or ground beef)
3 onions, chopped
2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
6 garlic cloves, minced
2 14.5 ounce cans diced tomatoes, undrained
2 14.5 ounce cans tomato sauce
1 12 ounce can tomato paste
2 tablespoons dried basil
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Cook sausage, onions, mushrooms and garlic over medium heat for 10 minutes. Drain and transfer to slow cooker. Stir in remaining ingredients. Cover; cook on low 8 to 9 hours. Serve over your favorite pasta and enjoy!

I'm trying crock pot orange chicken today, I can't wait to see how it turns out.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Random Things

I have a few random pictures of the boys I wanted to post.

We went to Yoder's on Wednesday, it was the first time we've gone since both boys started walking. It was a playdate with the MOPs group. The boys had a lot of fun and Carter even went up to a goat and touched it. He's fine with animals, but if I pick him up and try and bring him to the goat, he'd have a fit. He has to do it himself and on his own time. Evan could care less, he has no fear when it comes to animals. With both boys walking, I was busy trying to watch them and keep them from getting into things or stealing other kids snacks (ahem, Carter) so I couldn't get a picture of them with the goats, this is the only one I got.

I took these pictures a few nights ago when we went out in front of the house to let the boys walk around a little bit. We walked up the street a little bit and it was so cute to see the boys walking.

The boys are obsessed with my phone. There is no fit that my phone can't stop. They can be crying for any reason and if I hand them my phone, everything is good. The only problem is, I only have one cell phone, so if they are both next to each other, I can't use this little trick because then it turns into a major fight over the phone. But, it's really cute to see them on it. Here's some pictures I got of Carter playing with it the other day.

The boys have a play tent that we got them for their birthday. They love it and play with it all the time. They don't like to just go inside or crawl through, they like to knock it down. Well, the other day when they were playing, Carter was inside it and went to knock it down and fell into a basket I have in the front room for their blankets and I walked in and saw this.
 He was laying on part of the tent, so it was stuck with him.

 Look at that grin!
I SWEAR my children are dressed 99% of the time. I leave them in their pajamas until after their first nap, I give them a snack of fruit and it's usually messy, so I change them right after that and leave them in their clothes until bathtime. If I have to change their diaper right before I'm going to change them into their outfits or put them in the bath, then I just leave their pants off. This 5 minutes or so every few days is when they do the funniest, cutest things. I feel like every picture I take to post on here, they are pantless in. I swear they don't run around like that all day.

Cute things I want to remember but didn't get a picture of:
*Evan started fussing the other day while Greg was filling up his sippy cup, and Carter walked over to him and held out his sippy cup and let Evan drink out of it--SO SWEET!!!
*Carter used to be really shy, but now that he's able to walk so good, that has gone out the window. When we were at the park the other day, he walked up to this group of 4 or 5 year old girls, wedged himself in between them and acted like he was apart of their group, he even climbed up on the part of the slide that one of them was sitting on to sit next to her.
*I've been rubbing orajel on Carter's gums before his naps and at bedtime, so now when I open the lid to the orajel and start putting it on my finger, he takes out his pacifier and opens his mouth real wide.
* Evan is really into hugging and when I get him out of the crib he wraps his arms around my neck and hugs me. He does on command most of the time if I ask him to give me a hug and I've even seen him hugging Carter.
*The boys have been hanging out under the dining room table for a few minutes every day, I just thought they were having fun being under there, well, it turns out they've been working on this screw under there a little bit each day and finally got it off. I took it away and there was this flat, round, circle piece behind it (greg said it's called a washer?) and I tried to get it off, I tried and tried and couldn't, so I figured they wouldn't either. I walked away to wash my hands and turn around (like, 5 seconds later) and Evan has it off.

These boys make us laugh so hard every day. I think Carter has finally got his two bottom molars in, and is back to his normal, happy self. They are sleeping better at night, napping better during the day, and play so well. They are in good moods during the day and they are always laughing. I'm so glad to be past teething for a little while and I hope Carter's top molars don't come in for awhile, maybe after the holidays. :)

Friday, September 16, 2011

Pinnable Me- Fall

I love fall, it is my favorite time of year. I love everything about it and I look forward to it all year. I'm going to start decorating for fall soon and have got a lot of great ideas from Pinterest. This year I'm going to just do simple, easy, and inexpensive decorations. I don't have a lot of extra time to spend on them right now and I can't really do too much because the boys are into EVERYTHING, so just a few things this year.

These look so easy and cute! I probably won't do them this year, but maybe next year.

I'm definitely doing this. I love mini pumpkins. There's a place right down the road called "The Corner Store"  and I get some from there every year. They just put them out for this year and I'm going over there today to stock up. I have lots of ideas for mini pumpkins this year.

So cute and simple.

Much quicker and easier than carving and it looks better than what I can do carving.

I love glitter, I will probably save this for when the boys get old enough to help me, I think it'd be a fun project.

Love this, just place round stickers on the pumpin and spray paint. I'm thinking it would work with a large letter sticker too.

So pretty!
Source: via Samantha on Pinterest

I love the idea of placing votives in pumpkins.

I'm definitely making these this year. I bought a ton of preztels and melting chocolates for a bake sale earlier this month and didn't use them all, plus I have a lot of fun Halloween sprinkles.