Friday, February 28, 2014

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Toddler Bed

Where did I last leave off in the story of Lucas' head-banging? Oh yes. We had tried moving his crib around in his room and distracting him with toys. And nothing was working.

So we decided to try something drastic. Since neither boy was sleeping well, we figured we would put them in a room together and see if they slept better together.

How did it go?


We realized that Ryan's issues of not sleeping by himself would not be solved overnight by being in the same room with his brother. He wants us at night, and nobody else. After being up until 5am with both boys, I quickly nixed the idea of having them share a room at this age. Maybe in a year or so. But not right now.

So then we put Lucas back in his room. And the very next night he climbed out of his crib. Uh-oh! Time for a toddler bed.

So we put together the toddler bed and guess what? Lucas has been doing so well in it! He surprisingly doesn't try to climb out of it very much.

He is still banging his head, only now it is against the wall. So I have wedged his crib mattress in between his bed and the wall, and now I don't hear his head-banging as much at night. The mattress softens the blow against his head and makes me feel like he won't get hurt.

I'm still up with him at night sometimes, but never more than once per night. Sometimes when he is hitting his head against the wall I lay down next to him and sing him a song. He loves music and this really seems to soothe him back to sleep. I'm so glad the transition to a toddler bed has gone so well!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Stitch Fix Review #6

It's time for my 6th Stitch Fix review!! This box was full of some great items. If money were no object I would be tempted to keep everything this time.

I don't know about you, but I am ready for warmer weather. And it's not even that cold here! I like spring/summer clothes a lot more than I do winter clothes. They're just brighter and more fun. So for this fix I requested some printed blouses for the Spring, as well as a pair of colored skinny jeans. I was excited to receive some fun new pieces, and this box did not disappoint! Don't you love all the pretty colors peeking out of the box?
I also love the complimentary style cards they send along.

Pomelo Westin Embroidered Henley Knit Shirt
I like the bright fuschia color of this top, although I was told by family members that the color is bad for me. I don't love the "bohemian" style embroidery. I also feel like it makes me look a little matronly. I'm looking for more 3/4 length and short-sleeve shirts now, rather than long sleeve. This one is being sent back.

 Just Black Adora Skinny Jean
I have a love-hate relationship with this jeans. On the one hand, I really love the light blue/gray color! They are perfect for the Spring and would look cute with many shirts I own. However, they are pretty tight on me and a bit out of my price range. So I reluctantly sent these back. If they were a little bit bigger and less expensive, I would have kept them and worn them every day!

Collective Concepts Cathleen Abstract Chevron Tulip-Sleeve Blouse
I specifically asked Stitch Fix to send me a chevron print blouse. It may be a trend on it's way out, but I love the chevron look and don't own anything with this print. I didn't love this shirt right away, but then multiple people told me I should keep it. I like the fun colors and the print, but I don't know if I like them together.

Pomelo Salvatore Crochet Detailed V-Neck Shirt
When I first saw this shirt I thought it was a little blah. But then I tried it on and I love everything about it! The color is different than anything I own. It's very soft. The crochet detail is pretty. The fit is good. And the sleeves button to become 3/4 length tab-sleeves, which I love. But ultimately I could only justify keeping one item this month, which leads me to the final shirt!

41Hawthorn Moni Horseshoe Print Stud Detail Top
I have seen this exact shirt in many different prints and colors featured in other Stitch Fix reviews. I love the horseshoe print because it is so unique and unexpected. The fit is perfect.... a little loose and flowy, but still very tailored and figure-flattering. The studs on the front and sleeves give it a little bit of edge. I am already planning on wearing it this weekend!
Wasn't that a cute box of clothes? I think I'm going to have a lot of fun with Stitch Fix this summer.
What are you waiting for? Try Stitch Fix for yourself!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Bath Before Dinner

About a year ago I started giving the boys their bath before dinner. And I've never looked back.
I used to do the typical routine of dinner, bath, books, bed.....but I often ended up skipping or dreading bathtime. Why? Because by the time dinner is over I am tired! I would look at all the dinner dishes that needed to be washed, the boys that needed to be bathed, the books that needed reading, and the toys that needed to be picked up before bed......and I would feel like sitting down on the couch and never getting up.

My other ongoing issue has always been what to do between the hours of 4pm and dinnertime. The boys are getting tired and cranky by this time and it's just a hard time of day.

So one day I gave them a bath to distract them from their crankiness. And it worked! They had fun, and my to-do list after dinner didn't seem so long. Sure, they get some dinner crumbs on their pajamas, but I don't mind. Most days they are in their PJs by around 5:30. Then after dinner all we need to do is pick up toys before the bedtime routine starts.

I love baths before dinner. It works for us! What works for you?

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

A Lot To Say

Ryan has a lot to say these days.

Sometimes it's kind of gross......

Look at my 3 poops! One is the big Daddy, one is the Mommy, and the little one is the baby poop!"

Mommy I found poop in Lucas' mouth!

Sometimes he asks really serious questions.....

Mommy can God hear me? Can He see me? Where does He live?

Sometimes he makes me laugh........

Can you pray and ask God why Mommies don't have peepees?

Mommy I can't go to sleep because my bottom won't let my eyes close.

Mommy do you know why I love you? Because when Lucas hits me you put him in a timeout!

And sometimes he says things that are just plain weird....

Mommy do you remember when I was inside your tummy in a bubble and I had bones? Why didn't my bones touch the bubble?

Monday, February 17, 2014

Freezer Meal Swap

Back in July I blogged about some freezer cooking I was doing in this post. Well I have been enjoying it so much that I have formed a little Freezer Meal Swap club. I had read about it online and thought it sounded like a fun idea to try. Each member cooks 5 of the same freezer meal. They keep one for their family, and then swap the rest for the other members' freezer meals.

We have done it twice now and here is why I am loving it!
~It's FUN to eat food prepared by someone else. It almost always tastes better!
~It is easier to make 5 of the same meal all at once than it is to prepare 5 separate meals.
~My freezer is stocked with homemade meals, ready to pop in the oven when I'm too busy to cook.
~Our "swaps" are also playdates, so the moms and kids all have fun!

In January I made 5 meals of BBQ Beef & Bean Casserole with a Cornbread Topping. Three other ladies showed up, each with 4 of the same meal. I kept one of my casseroles for myself and ended up with a Chicken Broccoli Rice Casserole (x2), a Chicken Pot Pie, and a Mexican Quesadilla Casserole. Yum!

This month I made 5 meals of Turkey Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups. I was a little overwhelmed by all the ingredients at first, but they turned out great!
I kept one Lasagna meal for myself, and after the swap I brought home Sweet and Sour Chicken, Sour Cream Noodle Bake, Smoked Sausage Soup, and Spaghetti with Meatballs and Breadsticks. I can't wait to try everything!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Small Blessings

I took some photos yesterday to document some of the small things I am thankful for. It's so easy to get busy and ignore the small simple blessings during the day. So here are a few of mine from yesterday!

Adam makes coffee every morning for us since he leaves before I get up. Thank goodness, because I make terrible coffee!
A rare moment of playing happily together. They played long enough for me to do the dishes!

Ryan made this for me at Sunday School. It makes me grateful that he is growing up with God in his life.

As much as I love to cook, it's nice to take a night off sometimes! Thanks to the Freezer Meal Swap I've been doing with friends recently (more on that later), I have a freezer full of meals ready to pop in the oven! This was last night's dinner.

We went to a friend's house yesterday for a playdate and I am reminded what a huge blessing it is to have great Mom friends. One sent a sweet Valentine craft home with us!

A moment of silence and calm while Lucas is napping to sit down and read my Bible. I look forward to this time every day!

Score! Found $10 while washing Adam's work clothes.

When I take the time to sit down and intentionally play with my boys, I am always blessed. Ryan was so proud to finish this 100-piece puzzle with me. (Of course what you can't see is a certain little blessing who was climbing on my back while I took this picture)
Adam got home in time for dinner! I love the rare nights when we all eat dinner together.
What blessings did you experience yesterday, big or small?

Sunday, February 9, 2014


I have officially started weaning Lucas. It's been on my mind for a couple months now, but I had no good reason to stop nursing. But now that we have a possible trip coming up in April where we will be gone overnight from the boys, I am motivated to start the weaning process! Lucas is 20 months old now, and although I'm sure he would continue to breastfeed for many more months, I feel okay about stopping now.
I started a week ago and so far it is going better than I expected! I was nursing him before his nap, before bedtime, and often once in the middle of the night. So I started by giving up the pre-naptime nursing. I distracted him by giving him his first ever cup of warm milk. He liked it and went right to sleep afterwards! No fuss at all.

Lucas also slept better last night and didn't nurse at all in the middle of the night. I also noticed the last two nights he has not nursed as long before bedtime. I'm a little sad that the weaning process seems to be going so quickly! I was expecting it to take at least a month, but perhaps Lucas is more ready to be done than I thought. I am hoping that this may lead to him sleeping better at night. I will give you all an update on his nighttime head-banging soon!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Lasagna Soup

I  have a really delicious soup recipe to share with you today. And yes, it contains ground beef. Maybe I should rename my blog to Nully Baby and Ground Beef Recipes. I have seen this recipe for Lasagna Soup floating around the web for a long time and I am so glad I finally made it! Adam and I both loved it. One must use the ricotta/parmesan topping with it. Otherwise, it won't really taste like lasagna. I made sure to get a little bit of the cheese topping and parsley in each bite, and it truly tasted like lasagna. Perfect when served with sourdough bread on a rainy day.
Lasagna Soup
4 ounces small pasta (I used whole wheat shells)
1/2 pound ground beef
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon tomato paste
4 cups chicken stock
1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained 
2 bay leaves
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste 
3 ounces ricotta cheese
1/4 cup grated parmesan
parsley, finely chopped 
In a small bowl, combine ricotta, Parmesan, salt and pepper, to taste; set aside.
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions, or until al dente. Drain well and set aside.
Heat a Dutch oven or large pot over medium high heat. Add ground beef to the skillet and cook until browned, about 3-5 minutes, making sure to crumble the meat as it cooks; drain excess fat.
Add garlic, oregano and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring frequently, about 2 minutes. Stir in tomato paste until well combined, about 1 minute. Stir in chicken stock, diced tomatoes and bay leaves; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until slightly thickened, about 20 minutes.
Remove bay leaves and stir in reserved pasta. Serve immediately with a heaping spoonful of the ricotta mixture, sprinkled with parsley.
Serves 4

PS: Use your leftover ricotta to make ricotta pancakes the next morning! Don't ask me what to make with the leftover tomato paste.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Boy Mom Habits

There are certain habits I have adopted lately, and I believe they have a lot to do with being a boy Mom. I'm sure some Moms with daughters do these things as well. But I just feel like a lot of these habits or behaviors would be totally different if I had girls. What do you think?

1) We go the park a LOT. My boys require a ton of physical activity in order to wear themselves out. So I try to plan outside running around time into almost every day. The park is one of my go-to activities for them. For example, the other day we spent a couple hours in the morning playing/cleaning at home, and then we went to the grocery store. On the way home to fix lunch I realized my boys had way too much energy to settle down for naptime and quiet time. Cleaning and grocery shopping just wasn't tiring enough for them. So we spontaneously stopped by the park for 30 minutes of playtime!

2) Hotwheels everywhere. In my purse, my car, even my underwear drawer.

3) I use words like big, strong, and fast to compliment or describe my boys. Ryan loves hearing me talk about how big his muscles are, or how fast he can run or how high he can jump.

4) I make a lot of sound effects, especially car noises. The shopping cart or the stroller makes "vroom vroom" sounds, and when we play with cars, they crash and explode. I don't even consciously notice I'm doing this anymore. Car noises just come out of my mouth.

5) I don't come running when I see them fall down or get hurt. Obviously if it seems serious, I will make sure my boys are okay and give them a big hug and a kiss. But otherwise? I don't always acknowledge accidents anymore. My boys typically bounce right up and start playing again. Lucas even shoves me away if I try to kiss his "owies". I am sure I would react differently if my daughter got hurt.

6) I don't sit down on the floor. Sounds strange, right? The reason I try to avoid this is because if I do, I will most certainly be tackled or climbed on like a human jungle gym! My boys are getting pretty strong and they can lay me flat on the floor in seconds.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Just Like Daddy

These boys idolize their Daddy....and want to do everything he does. Especially fun things like trying on his new racing helmet!