Saturday, January 28, 2012


Yes, it's 3:30am and I am blogging.  Why, you may ask?

Cuz I'm a horrible procrastinator.

You'd think since I took a class specifically about time management, I'd be able to apply some of those skills.  But instead, I make notes for 2 weeks on what my project for my Project Management course is going to be, then spend the entire day (and night!) before it's due plugging away and finishing it.  It's looking amazing, but still...  I have to be sure not to do this with my next project (which I haven't started, but isn't due until March, and we haven't gotten the details on it yet)!!

I'm just taking a little break and letting my mind rest a moment.  It's not like I haven't slept.  I went to bed at 1015 and asked my hubby to set the alarm for midnight so I could get a short nap in.  Maybe if I get my powerpoint done and the paper itself thrown together I can get another nap in before my 8am class. (Yes, a Saturday class, but I'm done by 2 and it's only 2 days total.)

I'm thinking maybe some coffee or a snack would be good... just wondering how I'm gonna count my calories for this, being up all night, and not getting a workout in yesterday since I spent all day glued to my text book (when I wasn't doing this, that, and the other for Scrappy man.  For the most part he was content, though, because I let him play Monster Jams on Wii after watching cartoons for a while.) 

Well, time to get back at it!! :)

Friday, January 27, 2012


Feeling a lot better!  My wonderful hubby brought home some cough drops and real Kleenex for me since my poor nose was so sore from using cheap tissues.  He let me just rest and he wrangled the kids for the night on Wednesday night. 

Even though I still had a little bit of a cough, I still went to TOPS yesterday.  I'm glad I did! I had a good feeling about the weigh in because I've been diligent about tracking everything I eat and been getting workouts in at least 4 times per week.  I aim for a minimum of 30 minutes, but have actually been getting an hour or more most days!!  There are certain show I just LOVE to watch, so I set up the Wii for Free Step and do that while I watch tv.  The maximum time it can be set for is 30 minutes, so sometimes when the 30 minutes is up, I'll reset it for another 20-30 minutes.  It must be working cuz this week I lost 3 1/2 pounds - yay!!!!

My total loss now is at 22 pounds.  The past month and a half before this hadn't been the best, but I'm back on track and hoping to be over the 30 pound mark by my 1 year anniversary with TOPS, which is March 24.  I think I can do it!!!

I've stopped using because most of the food values need to entered manually and it's too time consuming trying to figure out all of the calorie counts.  A friend referred me to another website which is now in my 'favorites' bar and is an absolute necessity for me - .  I love that you can join discussion boards and request friends.  It also has an extensive database of foods already entered, as well as exercises.  The daily goal already has subtracted out the calories needed for weight loss.  If you have extra calories left at the end of the day, or you 'earn' extra calories by exercising, it tells you how much weight-loss progress you would make over the next 5 weeks.  If you haven't checked it out, I highly recommend it.

I invite anyone reading this (if there is) to try out for ONE WEEK and see what kinds of results it gives you!  Feel free to send me a 'friend request' (yes it's kinda like facebook in that) at mindy_shs.

And now I'm off to cram on my homework - I've been procrastinating too much on it lately, and now it's due tomorrow :(

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Taking a Sick Day...

I know.  Mommies don't get sick days.  But I'm still trying.  Taking it easy and letting things around the house slide today.  It started with a cough and little bit of a stuffy nose last night.  This morning I woke up with a horrid sinus headache, coughing, sneezing, and completely stuffed up.  I took a couple ibuprofen, but that didn't help much.  I even tried my netipot, which almost always takes care of it, but not today :(

After dropping Beau off at school, Scrappy and I came home and I turned on Mickey Mouse Clubhouse for him.  I set him up with some cereal (which he will only eat dry - if I put milk on it, he refuses!) and his PediaSure, and he let me doze in the recliner until that was over.  I turned on Umizoomi after that, and he went back to playing with his monster trucks and watched that while I dozed a little more.

This afternoon he's getting a little crabby and restless.  He keeps asking when Beau is going to be home and insists that we go get her now!  She'll be out of school soon, so he'll have someone to play with. I'm hoping he takes a nap after we get home.  I had to wake him up from his nap early yesterday so we could go pick Beau up, and Scrappy was not a happy camper for the rest of the night.  He threw a complete tantrum in the car, all through the grocery store, and back at home again.  I really wish I could let him go outside to play, but he's supposed to be taking it easy for another week still.  As it was, his tantrum caused his nose to start bleeding again.

I'm hoping to get another nap in too.  I cheated for lunch and just made a can of soup for me, and a pb sandwich for Scrappy.  Tonight's supper is just going to be leftovers since hubby is working late.  Scrappy doesn't eat much anyway, and Beau is pretty happy with a can of spaghetti-o's.

I am really hoping this cold doesn't last long :(  Hubby is bringing home more kleenex and cough drops for me tonight.  I'll be fine as long as I don't run a fever - if I do, then I'll have to go in and get checked since we don't need Scrappy getting sick!!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Finally winter? and Scrappy's surgery

The house is settling down after a busy week.  I feel like I'm finally getting caught up on the sleep I missed this week, but my whole sleep schedule is out the window :/

Tuesday night I had to call the hospital to find out what time Scrappy's surgery was.  Beau was going to stay at my sister's for the night since we usually have a 6am report time and Beau still had school.  (She's already missed enough.  I kept her home all of Thanksgiving week because it was a short week and we were trying to prepare the kids for what to expect at the funeral.)  We tentatively planned for her to stay there Wednesday night too since we didn't know if the surgery would be inpatient or outpatient (it was initially scheduled for outpatient).  Very glad we, too!!

He was scheduled to report at 12:30 pm.  Most adults would have trouble fasting that long, let alone a 3 1/2 year old!  He couldn't have anything after 4:30 am, and I wasn't sure how we were going to handle it at first.  After discussing it with my hubby, we decided to keep Scrappy up as late as possible.  Then he would be able to eat later and would hopefully sleep until we had to leave.  And it worked!  He crashed about 2 am and slept until we woke him up to get him ready.  Long story short, because of an emergency being squeezed in ahead of him, Scrappy didn't end up getting taken back for surgery until 4:30pm.  We felt so bad for the little guy, not being able to eat or drink anything.  Since he got out of surgery so late, he ended up being inpatient.

Of course, he didn't want to sleep in the big hospital bed by himself - he wanted Mommy to snuggle with him.  That was one of the worst night's sleep I've had in a long time - only being able to sleep on one side, being woken several times a night either by nurses checking on him, giving him nebby treatments, or him kicking me.  I looked forward to sleeping in my own bed Thursday night.  He ended up sleeping between us so he wouldn't bump his nose on anything and so we could keep him elevated.  Here's Scraps with his Buppy (puppy-bear), who went into surgery with him

And Big Bear.

For the next 2 weeks, the little man is supposed to take it easy - no rough housing or overexertion.  Which means no playing in the snow we finally got.  I'm not sure of the official count, but as of 8:30 am yesterday we had 4 inches of snow, and it kept snowing lightly all day.

This is the view out our back door.

I was hoping things would turn around yesterday and I'd get a much-needed break in luck.  I had no plans to leave the house since Beau was home because of Staff Development Day.

Yeah right.  I should know better.

It seemed most things I tried to do yesterday backfired on me.  I went out to try to snow blow the patio, driveways, and sidewalks since hubby had been at work all day.  I tried several times but just couldn't get it started, so I gave up and shoveled some by hand.  When hubby got home, he got it started right away (apparently the circuit to the outlet wasn't turned on.  I didn't know it wasn't on).  When I came in from shoveling, I thought coffee sounded great - and then the filter capsized and got grounds in my coffee :/  Grrrr.

Comfort food for supper - potato soup and baking powder biscuits.... Made them so many times, didn't think I could ever mess those two up.

Hahaha - again, yeah right!

I was distracted talking to my buddy while I was making the biscuits - and totally screwed them up by not adding enough flour.  Of course, I didn't realize it until after I added the liquids.  So instead of light and fluffy biscuits, they were kinda flat.  At least they still tasted good!!

The conversation I'd been having all day with my kids continued after my buddy left and I was finishing up the soup.

Beau: MOOOOM!!  Scrappy is doing it again (annoying her or getting into something of hers)
Me:  Scrappy stop it!
Scrappy: Mommy! My want UP!
Me:  I'm trying to ______ (make supper).  Go play with your (monster trucks/cars/puzzles/trains)
Scrappy:  My not like you.  My want Daddy.
Beau: MOM!  He's doing it again!!
and on and on and on.

As a result of Mama being distracted, thickening up the soup didn't go as planned.  I thought it looked kind of odd as I added the corn starch to the soup - why was it foaming up so much?  And it's not thickening up - how much more do I need to add.

Then I looked in my hand - and realized I had grabbed the baking powder instead of the corn starch!  Really?? UGH!  At least the soup still came out tasting good.

Today Scrappy had a bit of a fever and hubby worked all day, so we just had a quiet day at home.  I didn't get much done today, but that's ok.  I got my workout in - I only missed Wednesday and Thursday doing them this week, but have done more than an hour most other days :)  Looking forward to TOPS weigh in next week!!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Letting Go.....

After spending all morning in class, I went to see a dear friend and offer my condolences as she said goodbye to her brother.  He had also been a good friend many years ago before we lost touch.  It's still hard to believe he's gone. It's harder still to try to understand why...  I paid my respects, gave my love to his parents and siblings, and I had to leave.  It's just too soon for me.  This hits so close to home, and my wounds are still healing.... I think they will be for a long time....

I have avoided writing about this because I didn't know what I wanted to say.  I didn't know how to express my feelings on this and it was still too fresh, and too tender a topic.

I have never knew an emotional pain could hurt so much more than any physical pain before.  I never knew how much my heart could hurt, yes - physically hurt - until I had to say goodbye to my baby boy.

When we were at the NICU that Friday - and he coded - all I could say is No - no - no.  I wasn't going to lose my baby.  They needed to do whatever they could.  I couldn't give up on him.  I couldn't lose him.  He couldn't die.  We needed him.  We wanted him.  I needed him.  I wanted him.  I loved him.  All I wanted was for him to come home.  To snuggle up with him and take a nap.  To hold him after a bath, smelling like baby lotion.  To hear him cry or coo or laugh.  Yes, even just to change his diapers and to wake up in the middle of the night to feed him.  All the things a mommy should do.  All the things many new moms complain about because they don't get enough sleep.

Oh, what I wouldn't give to be the one who is waking several times a night to care for my little boy.  My little Baden. My little angel.... and our Little Warrior.

When the nurse came to get us that last night, my heart sank into my stomach as soon as I heard the knock on the door.  When we entered the NICU and saw them working on him again, I wanted to scream.  I wanted to not see the numbers and the lines and hear the warning beeps of the equipment.  I knew from the look on the doctor's face what she was going to say....  I told her not to tell me they're doing 'everything' they can until they had done everything they could.  So I knew when she approached us that this was it.

It wasn't fair, the pressure I put on my husband.  We both knew that Baden was tired, that his body was tired, and he was in pain in spite of the medications.  We were told that we could have them remove his breathing tube and let him go on his terms, or he would keep having seizures and coding until that killed him.  We had to do the right thing.  But I just couldn't bring myself to say it was time to let my little boy go.  My hubby would have to decide it was time.

I have never seen anyone die before.  I was scared.  I was hurting.  I didn't know what was happening.  After they removed the tube and most of the IVs, I wrapped him up in his blanket better and just held him.  I snuggled him, told him how much I loved him, covered his little forehead with kisses.  After some time, I told the nurses that they had to take out the rest of the IVs and tubes.  He needed to be held as any baby should be - no tubes, no wires, no lines.  Just Mama and her baby.

My husband sat beside me.  He and I held Baden's hands, kissed his forehead and cheeks.  Told him how much we loved him.  Told him we didn't want him to hurt, didn't want him to suffer.  Told him it was ok, he could go, Mama and Daddy understood.  We'd be ok.  We'd make it through.  He could let go when he was ready.  We would be fine.  We knew he had fought so hard.  We were so proud of him.  He didn't need to fight anymore - it was ok... we loved him.... we would always love him.... he would always hold a special place in our hearts...

I still cry at night.  I still ask why.  I still think it's unfair.  I still miss him so, so terribly.  When I visit him at the cemetery, I know he isn't there spiritually, only his physical body - his shell.  But I still want to curl up next to him and cry.  I feel closer to him there...

It still feels so wrong that they make caskets so small.  And that the tiny ones come with a teddy bear.  It's so wrong that they dig holes so small.  And make headstones with dates so close together.

I know we cannot understand why God chooses to call our loved ones home with him.  I know we just have to trust that He has a plan and reason for everything.  I just have to believe that He knows what He is doing, and He knows what is best for us, even when it hurts so much.

Breathe easy, Little Warrior.  You fought hard.  You made us so proud.  Mama loves you so much.  I miss you more than you could ever know.  I know you're watching over us. 

I love you, Baden.

~Baden Scot~
~November 11-November 20, 2011~

Friday, January 13, 2012

Feeling Refreshed!

I really needed to get caught up on my sleep - it's been a rough week!!  Tuesday we had all-day appointments for Scrappy, plus I had my checkup in the morning.  We had to be there at 7 am, so I'd been up since 3:30 am.  No wonder I was crashed in my recliner by 9 pm!! 

Scrappy's appointments were just his normal CF checkups, an ENT appointment, and an audiogram.  His hearing still isn't where it should be, so they decided he does need another set of tubes put in.  He will also be having another nasal polypectomy and bronchial lavage.  This will be his 2nd set of tubes, 3rd polypectomy and lavage, and 4th surgery in less than 4 years.  The ENT also ordered a head CT for Wednesday so she could see if his sinuses were congested with polyps too.  His surgery is scheduled for next Wednesday, the 18th, and is planned to be an outpatient procedure unless she does goe up into his sinuses more.  Praying for a simple procedure and no complications!!

We had to be at the hospital at 8am for his CT, so that meant being up at 5am on Wednesday.  Poor little man had to fast until after it was completed.  Second day in a row that he had to fast from midnight until his first procedure - not fun for him or for us either!!  They had to give him anesthesia to do the CT because he was terrified of the machine!  Because of this, he didn't go in to CT until 1015.  It seemed to take forever for him to come out of it.  He started vomiting up mucus and stomach acid, since his stomach was empty.  That made for a really long ride home!  About 3pm his tummy finally settled down and he came out of it enough that he could eat.

My OB cleared me at my appointment!  I couldn't have a complete workout because of the untimely 'visitor,' but my doc told me I could have the last part of my checkup done at our local clinic.  She asked if we were planning to have another child.  I told her we would like to once we got the go-ahead from her health-wise.  She would like me to try to lose a little more weight in the meantime, which I have been working on anyway, but said as long as my last test comes back ok, there's no reason we can't start trying.  I'm supposed to start taking prenatal vitamins now too in preparation.

Being at the hospital 2 days in a row took a toll on my diet :(  At TOPS this week I had a 3 pound gain.  In addition to the eating out, I didn't get my workouts in for the past week since Scrappy hasn't been feeling very well and wanted to constantly cuddle.  Today I was back at it hard again.  I was vacuuming and picked up the mat in the living room, and left it up so I could try out Zumba.  I did about 5 minutes of it and OUCH!  I'm not coordinated - I'm sure it would give anyone a good laugh!

I set up my Wii Fit to do the entire routine - 81 minutes!  Scrappy was getting a little crabby with me and wanted to play.  I told him if he can't wait patiently for his turn, he wasn't going to get a turn.  I'm sure I'll be sore tomorrow.  It's going to be difficult to get my workout in tomorrow - I have class in 8-2 but am leaving early so I can go to a funeral for a friend.  Very sad for someone to die so young :'(

Another new challenge I've set up for myself in cooking - try one new recipe each week.  I get tired of the same stuff each week and am looking to branch out... Hopefully I'll get some new ideas soon!!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


Had a crazy busy day today.  We sent Beau to stay with my sister last night because we had to take Scrappy to the doctor for a full day of appointments today.  We left our house at 5am so we could make it to his 7am fasting blood test.  3 year old + fasting = not fun!!  Especially since Mama and Daddy can't have anything either because that wouldn't be fair to Scrappy!  It made for a really long morning.  I went to bed around 11 last night (I had class then needed to unwind) and couldn't get to sleep for a while.  I woke several times during the night, worried I would oversleep or my hubby wouldn't wake me up early enough.  As a result, I was wide awake at 3:30 and could not get back to sleep no matter what I tried.

We finally made it home at 6 pm after picking Beau up from my grandma's house.  Oh, what a loooong day!!!  Scrappy has another appointment tomorrow morning at 8 am so we need to leave about 6.  At least it's only 1 appointment and we should be home before noon!!!  Hopefully after a nap tomorrow I'll be able to update....

I'm heading to bed early tonight if I don't just zonk out in my recliner before that.  I'm not the most pleasant person to be around when I'm overly tired (and overly sensitive!)

Saturday, January 7, 2012

New Potty Training Strategy

Scrappy has developed a slight fear of his potty chair.  He tells me there is a monster in it.  I'm not sure where he got this idea from.  For a while he loved his new potty chair that Daddy picked out because it is a Cars potty chair.  It has a little lever on the left hand side.  When you push the lever down, it makes a race car sound.  He loved trying to go on it just for the excuse of playing with the handle and making the noise.  Then suddenly one day he told me he was "scared of the potty."  I haven't been able to get him to sit on it since.

Today while my hubby was at work (yes, he's still working Saturdays) I was trying to figure out what we could do to get him to go.  Offering treats doesn't work.  I'm already giving him time to play the Wii as a reward for doing his treatments so he isn't fighting on that anymore (and it keeps him busy while I'm cooking if he's playing Monster Jams.  Or I'll let him do the Wii Fit and exercise his lungs more!  But I need to help him more with that one...)  I know he loves monster trucks, and is always asking for more.  He's been asking for Maximum Destruction lately.  (I had looked and looked and not been able to find it.)

Our kids are used to having a reward system.  They have an old glass wine jug that they put change into as they earn it for helping around the house.  In the late summer when we go to the county fair, the kids get to use their money saved up in the jar as their money to use to play games and go on rides.  Since it's their money to share, it wouldn't be fair to give him change to put into that jar. 

Instead, I took fifty cents out of their fair money jar - in pennies.  I recently emptied a small coffee can, so I cut a slit in the lid, and put the pennies in a baggie on top of the coffee can.  Then I ran to WalMart to look at monster trucks (and to just get out of the house by myself - I love my kids, but sometimes Mama needs a break too!!) and specifically search for Max D.  It took some looking, and cost a little more than I planned on, but I did find a package that had both Max D and Batman, which he doesn't have yet either.  (Yes, I've been trying to save money, but on the other hand I figured these 2 trucks cost less than 2 packages of pull ups.  If they work to get him potty trained, then they'll pay for themselves!)

The way the reward is (planned) going to work is, every time he tries to go potty on his potty chair, he gets to put one penny in the coffee can.  When all 50 are in there, he gets 1 of the new monster trucks.  Then we start over, but he only gets a penny when he actually goes on the potty chair.  When all 50 are in can, he gets the other truck (and should hopefully be potty trained by then!!)  I also discussed with my husband that we need to be more adamant about underpants.  The only time Scrappy will be allowed to wear a pull up will be nap time, bed time, and when we're traveling/driving.  We can get him to wear underpants, but he refuses to wear the plastic pants that go over them :/  And we keep reminding him that Brobee/Mater/(insert other character from Yo Gabba Gabba or Cars 2) doesn't like it when he goes potty/poopy on them.

Wish us luck!!  I'm always open to more suggestions!!!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Nature's Identity Crisis

I don't think nature realizes it's January - in Minnesota.  We had a record high of 52 yesterday, and it was still quite warm today - in the 40's!!  Where is all the snow???  I really want to go cross country skiing, but until we get some of that white stuff, that's not going to happen.  Rumor has it we might get some next week.  Wonder if it will stick around?

Scrappy went with me to TOPS on Thursday and I only stayed for weigh in (I gained a pound.  I'm getting a little frustrated since it seems like working out doesn't have much effect.  I know, I know.  Patience).  He was still running a fever (with no other symptoms) which finally broke this afternoon, so he couldn't go to the sitter's.  Since we were out of the house to take Beau to school anyway, I had a few errands that just could not wait any longer - I'd already put them off long enough!  (I also told Scrappy if he was a good boy during all our running, Mommy would buy him a donut on the way home!)

After TOPS, the first stop was the grocery store. 9 am is the perfect time to go because, of course, they had just put out a bunch of "Reduced for Quick Sale" items and were still bringing more over.  Now, I stocked up pretty well last time I went shopping but figured, since I had to get milk, eggs, other WIC things, and cat food and litter.  Found some pretty good meat deals again.  3 packages of dark meat chicken quarters (2 per package, $0.89/lb), 2 pork roasts ($1.99/lb), 2 small packages pork tenderloin medallions (2 per package, about $1.50/pkg), and a package 3 bone-in pork chops (about $2.50).  These were really good discounts when looking at the prices of the same items that were not reduced. (I won't be needing to buy meat for a while!)

After the grocery store, we still had a little while before our appointment at the consignment store, so we went to Shopko to pick up 6 prescriptions, then the college to pick up my books.  They only cost $144, but there was a HUGE stack of them.  I didn't have to buy books for 2 of my classes since I already have them from last semester (I failed 2 classes last semester because of my health problems and ultimately our loss of our Little Warrior - but I am appealing these F's since I believe I have a good reason, as does my advisor.) 

When we were done at the college, it was time to go to the consignment store.  I know from past experience that they have a limit of 50 items to be consigned at a time, so I took everything that I had sorted our already.  This was the equivalent of an 18 gallon tote.  I was very surprised that, other than an unopened package of beads, an unopened puzzle, and an old Halloween costume, they took everything.  I was told that if I bring the costume back in the fall, they'll take it then.  Yay!!

The last stop before going to get Scrappy's donut (yes, I delivered on that promise!) was at the funeral home.  I wrote a lot of thank you notes, but ran out.  As part of their service, they provided us with thank you notes. (too bad postage wasn't included!)  I got 2 boxes, although I doubt I'll need all of them... better safe than sorry, right?

Since hubby had to work late last night, we kept supper easy - mac and cheese and hot dogs.  So healthy, right?  But I tend to treat the kids with some of their favorites when he's not home, and work towards making fuller meals when he is.  I prefer if he doesn't have to worry so much about what's for supper since he's the one working full-time.

We really needed something different tonight.  The same old thing gets tiring after a while.  I had noticed when cleaning out the cupboards that I had been finding quite a few taco seasoning packets.  I've also been hungry for Spanish rice.  This made the supper decision easy!  I had kept out 2 packages of the chicken quarters wondering what I should do with them.  Chicken tacos with Spanish rice!  Turned out pretty good too!  Beau's always a big eater, but hubby enjoyed 4 tacos.  Even Scrappy was munching on the meat, and he's very picky.

I bet that chicken would be good on a salad... hmmm....

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Recipes - P3

Crockpot Smothered Pork Chops and Rice
6 pork chops
1 pkg fresh mozzerella cheese
1 pkg white button mushrooms, sliced
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1/2 tsp of salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 tbsp olive oil
1 bag fresh spinach
1 1/2 c uncooked brown rice
1 1/2 c water
1 can great northern beans
1 qt fresh canned tomatoes, pureed
1 tbsp ground cumin
Dash of cayenne pepper

Mix rice, beans, pureed tomatoes, water, cumin, and cayenne in crock pot.  In a deep skillet or saucepan, heat oil.  Add onions and mushrooms and saute until tender.  Add spinach and cook until spinach is wilted.  Remove from heat and stir in salt and garlic powder.  Place pork chops in crock pot on top of tomato and rice mixture.  Top with spinach/mushroom/onion mixture.  Slice mozzarella and top the chops and spinach mushroom.  Cover and cook on low 6 hours or until chops are done.

Breakfast Sausage I love sausage, but at times the sausage I get from the store is too spicy or too bland, so I prefer to make my own.  This sausage can be mixed up and frozen or used right away.

1 lb ground pork, chicken, or turkey
1/4 c diced red onion (you can use whatever you have on hand, but I prefer red for this recipe)
1 clove minced garlic (to save time, I usually buy the jarred, pre-minced garlic)
1 pinch (or more, depending on preference) ground cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp ground oregano
salt and pepper

Mix all ingredients together.  Form into patties and pan fry, or crumble and fry as you would hamburger. 

1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 c chopped walnuts (optional)

Use butter to grease 8x8 or 9x9 pan.  Over med-low heat in a med sauce pan, melt together chocolate chips with milk.  When mixture is melted and smooth, remove from heat.  Mix in vanilla and nuts, if using.  Mix thoroughly.  Pour into greased pan, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until thoroughly cooled.

**If you're feeling adventurous (or not sharing with kids) add 1 tbsp Amaretto, Kahlua, or other hard liquor.  The fudge will also be a little softer.**

Cream Cheese Bars
2 cans crescent rolls (I prefer butter flavored)
2 8oz blocks cream cheese, softened
1 c + 1/4 c sugar, divided
1 egg, separated
1 tsp cinnamon

Grease 9x13 pan and preheat oven to 350.  Unroll one can crescent rolls into bottom of pans.  Pinch together all seams, creating a bottom crust.  In a bowl, combine cream cheese, 1 c sugar, and egg yolk.  Mix with electric mixer until thoroughly combined.  Spread on top of crescent crust.  Unroll other can of crescent rolls onto waxed paper.  Pinch together all seams to make top crust.  Flip on top of cream cheese filling.  Beat egg white until foamy and brush onto top crust.  Mix cinnamon and remaining sugar and sprinkle on top.  Bake 20-25 minutes or until top is golden brown.

Ham and Swiss Stuffed Pork Roast
3 1/2 lb pork roast
12 slices ham lunch meat
3 slices Swiss cheese (I cut them from an 8oz block - cutting them the long way)

Preheat oven to 425.  Cut 3 long slits into the roast going the "long way."  Wrap each slice of cheese with 4 slices ham.  Stuff one wrapped slice in each of the 3 slits.  Tie roast together to hold cheese/ham in the roast.  Season on all sides with salt and pepper.  Cook for 15 minutes at 425.  Reduce heat to 350, bake approx 45 minutes or until cooked through.  Let rest 10 minutes before removing string and slicing.

Rice and Milk
1 1/2 c rice
6 cups milk
cinnamon (to taste)
sugar (to taste)
1 c raisins (optional)

Put all ingredients except raisins into a crock pot.  Cook on high 3 hours.  Add raisins, then reduce heat to low for 5 hours.  Stir occasionally.  Add more milk as necessary.  Serve as dessert or breakfast.  (can make it at night to be ready for breakfast, just leave set on low all night.)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Sick Day

No, not me.  My kids.  Both of them.

Last night I sent Beau to bed at 8 instead of her normal 8:30.  All through Christmas break, I let her stay up a little bit later than normal, just because it was vacation.  About 10, when I went to bed, Scrappy and hubby were watching Monster Jams - I knew there was no hope of getting Scrappy to bed as long as it was on, so I left him to Daddy's discretion. 

Beau called me into her room to complain that her tummy hurt.  Did it hurt like she had to use the bathroom, or like she was hungry, or like she was going to be sick?  She didn't know, so I told her to try to use the bathroom.  Nope, that wasn't it.  "I think maybe I might throw up.  I don't know."  Better safe than sorry - I put her on the couch with my wash bucket, just in case.  Scrappy got mad when I turned off the TV, but I told him he could snuggle with Mommy for a little bit in Mommy's bed and we'd watch monster trucks in the morning.

I did no more than walk out the living room when I heard Beau start retching.  As she ran to the bathroom, with her head half in the bucket, she missed and arfed on the floor.  Thankfully my husband had gotten aggravated with the kids spilling on the carpet in the living room and had ripped it up.  The hardwood is so much easier to clean.

This morning she still had a fever so I kept her home from school.  I must admit, I was really looking forward to her going back today.  Those two can only spend so much time together, cooped up in the house, before they start to drive each other (and me) crazy and start fighting like cats and dogs.  And they just can't resolve anything between the two of them - they need Mom's intervention.

My brother stopped to visit bright and early at 7am before he headed west again.  He had to see his favorite older sister (only older sister) and niece and nephew before he left.  Hubby and I were both surprise that Scraps wasn't up yet - he's usually our alarm clock at 6:30 or earlier.  Mean Mommy had to go wake him up.  Poor baby, he had a fever too :(

After Uncle had riled the kids up and left, I tried to get them to settle down a little because I did not want to spend my day scrubbing up their messes.  She had a couple slices of toast for breakfast, and he ate a little dry cereal.  He crawled up on my lap and snuggled most of the morning while she played her hangman handheld video game.  I let them watch cartoons all day and gave up on trying to watch anything that wasn't animated.  Scrappy ended up napping on me for about an hour and a half... and would wake up every time I tried laying him down.  It's just a shame that I couldn't fall asleep myself  :)

Tomorrow, she is definitely going back to school - since about 10 minutes after I called her in, she wanted to run around and play.  NOPE!  Sick day = keep your butt parked on the couch and rest.  It's not supposed to be fun staying home sick. (She wasn't too happy when her brother got to play Wii, but she had been quite argumentative yesterday and lost her privileges for today.) 

He really likes his monster truck game.  And he can't go too far lately without Big Bear (original, I know)

I have a ton of things to do tomorrow since I didn't leave the house at all today...  Hopefully the kids are both feeling 'normal.'

And I think I'm going to change my name tomorrow too.... I think this week my kids wore out the names "Mom," "Mommy," and "Mo-om!"

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!!

We enjoyed our quiet New Year's Eve at home.  Maybe we're getting old, but we enjoyed spending time with just our kids.  The forecast was for wind and rain, and sure enough, we finally got snow!  50 degrees, raining, on Dec 31 in Minnesota?  Not normal.  But today - about 10 degrees, snow, and awful wind on Jan 1?  Perfectly normal.  Mother Nature has worse mood swings than anyone I know!

I love cooking with my hubby so much!  We cooked a nice dinner together - turkey, stuffing, scalloped corn, baked potatoes, and turkey gravy.  Very yum!!  I cleaned up the dishes afterwards while he cleaned the rest of the meat off the turkey.  There were only a few pans I left to soak overnights so they would be easier to clean in the morning.  I put the turkey carcass in the crock pot on low overnight.  It smelled so good this morning!!  I learned my lesson from before about trying to can chicken stock - I froze my turkey stock.  Not bad - I got 15 cups of stock!!

Normally we go to a movie New Year's Day - it's a tradition that I've been trying to keep with my kids.  Unfortunately with today's weather, I don't think we're going to be leaving the house at all.  We are getting things done around the house though.  I did about 50 minutes on my Fit.  Hubby and I cleaned out the toy box so the kids have room to store some of their new toys.  Some of it we threw out, some of it we bagged up to donate to the Epilepsy Foundation.  I still have a ton of totes to go through in the garage.  Maybe at least get through some of the bags/totes of clothes so I can wash whatever I want to take to the consignment store next week.....  There is a 50 piece limit - I'm pretty sure I'm going to have to make a second appointment!!

My Opa and I are having a contest now.  Today is the day one of our contest.  We're going see who can lose the most by June 1st when he comes home.  The minimum we HAVE to go for is 10 pounds.  I'm hoping to double that.  We'll see what happens - but this year is going to be my year - I'm going to make it the best I can!!!