Thursday, July 29, 2010

Couponer In Training

I came across a really great blog, Couponing to Disney, a few weeks ago and it has really inspired me to start couponing more diligently. I have been a coupon user for a few years but really more of an amateur. I would use a coupon here and there. I wouldn't clip from the Sunday paper, just basically use the ones that I stumbled across. So in my never ending quest to become a better wife, I have decided to try and coupon as much as possible. I am not couponing for a trip to Disney or anything in particular, but if my husband works so hard so that I may stay home, I can at least try and save us some money.

This past Sunday I bought the paper and I had my mom save her coupon insert. I also check couponing to Disney every day because Kristin, the author, posts all sorts of deals and printable coupons. I bought a couple of small, purse-sized accordion folders to organize and I got started. In this first week, there are a few things that I have learned.

1. If there is a product that you really need and you are brand loyal too, check out their website. Most will offer some sort of coupon for signing up with their email newsletter. I personally have two email accounts and I use the one I don't use as much for this purpose. I got coupons for nestle chocolate chips and biore face wash this way.

2. If you really like a product, tell the company. I wrote a nice email to Hawaiian Tropic about the lotion I wrote a blog post about and they are now sending me some coupons.

3. Check the packaging of your products for coupons. I found a deal on the Hillshire Farms lunch meat container for $5 in coupons for telling them that their meat tastes good.

4. Keep your coupons with you when you go to the store, even if you don't plan on using them. I was planning on getting a specific lotion today but the store didn't have it. I did have a $3 off coupon for another lotion with me and ended up getting a better deal.

5. Sometimes coupons aren't really worth it. I have discovered that a lot of times, simply getting the generic version of a product as opposed to the one that comes with the coupon is cheaper. I always buy generic whenever possible and I want to get whatever product is cheaper.

6. Check your junk mail. I just looked in the ad for Meijer and saw they have all sorts of products this week for $10/11. This includes Coca-Cola 2 liters, toothpaste, deodorant, kids shampoo, and all sorts of food products. This might be a time where it is worth it to stock up.

7. I need someone to be my tutor for using Extra Care Bucks and coupons at CVS. They seem like they have some great deals I think you need your doctorate to figure it all out.

I don't really know how successful I was this week. I tried to find coupons for everything I needed but sometimes they weren't worth it. My goal is to be like one of those amazing women who can get $200 worth of stuff for like $10. Any of you fellow bloggers one of those women??? Any tips you can give me would be appreciated.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Hawaiian Tropic Lime Coolada After Sun Moisturizer Review

I just wanted to tell everyone about one of my favorite things this summer. It is the Hawaiian Tropic Lime Coolada After Sun Moisturizer. I use this lotion daily after I get out of the shower as my daily body moisturizer and the results have been fantastic. I try to spend at least a few days at the pool each week and I have built up a pretty good tan. The whole time I have been using this lotion I have not peeled once. And my tan has not faded at all. I also slather it all over my pregnant belly and it has kept it itch free and (relatively) stretch mark free as well.

I absolutely love the way it smells too. It kind of smells like key lime pie mixed with sun tan lotion. It really is refreshing and the scent lasts all day long. It contains aloe vera which can ease your burn as well as cocoa butter to moisturize your skin. I'm telling you, after using it all summer, my skin and tan has never looked better.

The other great thing; it is really affordable for a daily body moisturizer. You can buy it online HERE for $7.69. I have also found it at Walmart for even cheaper. It really is a great product and I probably will use it all winter as well.

I purchased this product on my own and was not compensated in any way for my opinions.


Monday, July 26, 2010

Wear Your Seatbelt!!!

This past Saturday afternoon my husband and I decided to take our daughter to our favorite burger joint and ice cream parlor that is about an hour away. We save it for a treat and only go about twice a year so we were very excited. We had to take the highway there and along the way we got stuck in traffic. As we pulled up to the accident, we saw an SUV on the other side of the median flipped over and in very bad condition. Then on the other side of the highway there were other vehicles stopped and directing traffic. There were no emergency vehicles on the scene yet so it must have just happened. As we passed I looked more carefully and to my shock and horror, on our side of the median, was a dead body, upside down against the median, covered with a blanket.
My first thought was maybe there is something that I could do to help. I am a CNA and a nursing student and I know basic lifesaving skills. Then I thought, you are 8 months pregnant on a very busy highway and CPR doesn't help if you are already dead. My third thought was sadness. Someone's whole life was wrapped up by people driving by, gaping at their dead body as they went about their day. I still can't get the image of her red and white socks out of my mind.
After doing a little research, I found out that this was an 18 year old girl. She was driving with someone else, they got a flat tire at 65 miles per hour, the SUV hit the median, and flipped over, ejecting the driver. The most likely reason she was ejected: SHE WASN'T WEARING HER SEATBELT!!!! The passenger, who was wearing his seatbelt, escaped with minor injuries. Now there is no telling if the driver would have lived had she worn her seatbelt, but I am pretty sure she wouldn't have been ejected from the car.
Car accidents happen every day. We don't really think about them because to be honest, we can't. If we thought that every time we got in the car we risked our lives, I don't think many people would go anywhere. My point is this. PLEASE, wear your seatbelt. PLEASE. Put it on before you put the car in drive and take it off after you put the car in park. And wear it properly. Put both the lap and shoulder belt on. I am guilty of this because the shoulder belt is so uncomfortable over my belly. But after this weekend my discomfort isn't worth my life. And make sure your children wear their seatbelts or are securely strapped in their car seats. I can't tell you how many times I have been driving and seen kids in the back seat running around, clearly without their belts on. This is something simple that we have heard thousands of times before but it is true, Seatbelts Save Lives.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

And The Winner Is...

Congrats to Ethnically Ambiguous, winner of the Belly Charms Sterling Silver Toe Ring. She now has 48 hours to contact me or a new winner will be drawn. I did have to draw a second winner because the first winner was not a follower of me on Google Friend Connect. Make sure you are a follower of mine for any future giveaways.

True Random Number Generator

Min: 1
Max: 94
Powered by RANDOM.ORG

Ethnically Ambiguous said...
i follow belly charms on twitter @chint76

July 19, 2010 1:46 PM

Saturday, July 24, 2010

My First Giveaway Ends Today!!!

If you haven't already, make sure you go enter my very first giveaway. It is for a Sterling Silver Toe Ring courtesy of Belly Charms. You still have until Midnight Central Time to enter and there are multiple ways to earn entries. I will notify the winner via email tomorrow. Good Luck!!! Enter HERE

Friday, July 23, 2010

Baby K'Tan Review Part 1

I first saw the Baby K'Tan baby carrier in a boutique baby store in my town several months ago and really fell in love with it but I couldn't test it out because they didn't have my size . A few days ago I received it in the mail and was even more impressed. With my last baby, I had a "baby bjorn" style carrier that had buckles and straps and did not allow for much skin to skin contact. It was very difficult to get on and off when I was by myself, especially with an infant. Needless to say, I did not use it very much.

When I learned I was pregnant again I was determined to find a better solution to my baby wearing problem. I knew that with a busy two year old to chase after, I was going to need a baby carrier more than ever. I had tried out the traditional ring slings before but ultimately found them too confusing and time consuming to put on.

The baby K'Tan baby carrier is a cross between the traditional sling and the "baby bjorn" style baby carrier in that it is already put together for you, but allows for multiple baby carrying positions and more skin to skin contact. It also features a two shoulder sling design that allows for more back support as baby's weight is distributed across both shoulders. I was also concerned after the recalls of baby slings as I wanted to make sure the sling I chose was safe. Baby K'tan is in full compliance with the CPSC warning and recall and includes instructions and has videos on their website about how to wear your baby properly.

The baby K'tan carrier is also machine washable and dryer safe, something that my old carrier was not. You also buy the carrier in the size that fits you so you aren't left with tons of extra fabric like the traditional ring sling. It is even designed to support your child's weight up to 42 lbs.!!! I don't know of any other carrier that can support that much weight.
I call this review Part 1 because as I do not have my infant yet, I can't review the ease of putting my baby in the carrier or how useful it is just yet. I can tell you that the color and fabric are beautiful. The fabric feels so comfortable, like a really comfortable cotton t-shirt, just a little thicker and more durable. I ordered the warm cocoa color and I really like how it looks. The carrier comes in several other colors as well. It even comes with a hat for your infant and a sash that can accommodate other positions as your baby grows and to support kangaroo care.

I have to admit I was a little intimidated at first when taking the carrier out of the box in that I was unsure how to put it on or if I was going to be able to figure it out. I took one look at the basic cradle hold in the instruction booklet and figured out how to do it on my first try. I even took it upstairs to my husband to show him how to do it. He even said that he wants to wear it!!
There are 8 other positions to learn that are detailed in the instruction booklet and online in videos on their site, but until my baby is big enough, those won't be necessary.

Now for the bottom line: the price. The baby K'tan carrier can be purchased on the site for $59.99. This is a little pricier than the old fashioned ring sling, but I think it is comparably priced to the "baby bjorn" style carriers. And with it having so many positions to choose from, I think the price is well worth it. You can buy one for yourself at Baby K'tan.

Keep an eye out at the end of August/beginning of September. When my baby is born I will be doing a second review and plan on doing a giveaway of a Baby K'tan Baby Carrier at that time to one of my lucky readers. Stay tuned!

I recieved a Baby K'Tan Baby Carrier at a discounted rate for the purposes of a review but the opinions expressed are my own.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Just Call Me Mommy: The Naptime Slayer

After writing two posts about how naptime is my nemesis, I am happy to report that for now (fingers crossed, knock on wood) I have defeated naptime. How did I do it you ask? Well, a few ways.
The first and most important thing in my opinion was patience. Anyone who knows me personally will report that I am not the most patient person in the world. I generally want what I want when I want it. Add to it the fact that I am a big, huge, cranky pregnant lady and you get someone who has no scrap of patience left in them. But at my wits end I vowed to take a breath and give my Peanut the patience she deserved. So every day at naptime I take the time to read her three books of her choosing, the same as at bedtime. I also had to realize that even though I may be ready for naptime to begin at noon, Peanut does not feel the same way.
Another thing I did was to distinguish naptime from bedtime. The first thing I did was call it our "quiet time" instead of "night, night" or "bed time." I tell Peanut that it is time for her quiet time and that Mommy needs her quiet time too. I turn out the lights, read her stories, and turn her music on. Then, instead of at bedtime, I put a gate in front of her door. That way she can see me and knows that she is not locked in her room for the rest of the day. This has eliminated the head banging on the floor or the door.
Finally, I have tried to keep the time for naps consistent. Generally we are taking naps at about 2pm. I try to be home around this time every day so that she can get a good nap in and doesn't lose her routine. While this does put some limitations on our schedule, I think it is important for now.
Peanut still cries sometimes, but not the hour long tantrum that used to accompany our old naptime routines. She doesn't bang her head or the door. Sometimes she falls asleep on the floor in front of the door which really touches my heart because I know she just wants to hang out with me. She generally wakes up about a half an hour later when I tell her to go lay in her bed and she does. I am totally amazed by this because this is a complete 180 from previous naptime experiences.
Maybe before was a phase that she was growing out of. Maybe she was in pain from getting her last few teeth. Maybe some of the things I am doing are actually working. I don't really care if is any or all of these things. For now, naptime is no longer my nemesis.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Should I Join Facebook or Twitter?

I am wondering if I should start a facebook page or a twitter account for Mommy's Margaritas. I have a personal page for myself but I like to keep that separate from my blogging world for the most part. I would really like to grow my blog but it seems like it takes enough time already to keep up with it without having to manage a facebook page or twitter account. On the other hand, I would really like to do more reviews and giveaways and this might be a way for me to get my blog's name out there. For those of you who are on facebook and twitter with your blogs, does it require much more time out of you to maintain? Is it a good thing or overexposure? I need some advice.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Free "First Hug" Safety Blanket

I found this through They are giving away a free baby blanket and coupon package, with free shipping and handling. Check out the link here.

Tuesday Blog Hops

I really like Tuesday Blog hops. I feel like I get the most traffic and find the best blogs to follow on Tuesdays. If you are a follower of mine and have never participated in one before, check out these today. You will come across some great new blogs to follow. If you are new to me, be sure to leave me a comment so I can follow you back. And don't forget to enter my very first Giveaway HERE that ends this week!!! Thanks for stopping by!!!!

Tuesday Tag-Along


Monday, July 19, 2010

My First Giveaway is Ending This Week!!!!-Low Entries

My very first giveaway is ending this week on 7/24 and for all of those who follow me, PLEASE come enter. The turnout so far has been pretty low and I am a little disappointed. I was thinking of doing a giveaway for a Baby K'tan baby carrier in the future but if turnout is this low I don't think I am going to do it. So come on over and enter the giveaway for a really pretty sterling silver toe ring courtesy of Belly Charms. Please and Thank you!!!!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Maple Oat Scones with Flax

I don't eat fish. I wish I could but I just don't like the taste. So I am constantly worried about not getting enough Omega-3 fatty acids in my family's diet. I decided to try ground flax seeds after they were recommended to me by my nutrition teacher. I compiled a few different recipes for scones and decided to try the flax seeds out. The end result was delicious. Not super sweet but the glaze on top made them just sweet enough. Peanut and my hubby really loved them as well. Make sure that if you make these, you get ground flax seeds as whole flax seeds are not broken down in the body and you don't get any nutritional value from them. These were also the most sticky things that I have ever made but don't be discouraged. Just make sure your hands, the utensils, and your board are really well floured.

Maple Oat Scones with Flax
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup golden flax seed meal
1 cup quick-cooking oats
4 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 tbsp. baking powder
4 tbsp. real maple syrup
5 tbsp. butter, cut into small chunks
2 large eggs
1 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup chopped pecans

For Glaze:
1/3 cup powdered sugar
3 tbsp. maple syrup

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place flour, flax seed meal, oats, sugar, salt, and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Pulse several times until the mixture is well blended. Add the maple syrup and butter and pulse until the butter is evenly distributed. Add the eggs, milk, and vanilla extract and process until a sticky dough is formed.

Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface. Place the pecans in the center of the dough and knead well. Divide the dough into two even pieces and pat each into an 8 inch circle. Cut each into 8 triangle wedges.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Place the scones on the paper about a half inch apart and bake for 13-15 minutes until lightly browned. Remove from the oven and allow to cool 10 minutes. Whisk together the glaze ingredients and drizzle over the warm scones.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

An Effort to Eat More Greens Without A Lot of Green

Now that my daughter is eating more and at regular times, I have decided that I want to try and set a good example for her by making most of our meals from scratch and at home. I also want to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into our diets. You see, when she really didn't eat at all, it was like, just get anything you can into her for some calories, it doesn't matter what it is. Both my husband and myself are guilty of some not so great eating habits. We eat fast food for lunch on a fairly regular basis, him because he doesn't know when or if he is able to take a lunch break since he is on the road for a good part of his day. I eat fast food because when I am out running errands it is just easier to pick something up. Plus I am sure that there is a little bit of "I am pregnant so I can eat anything I want" going through my head when I am in the McDonald's drive through.
I know that fast food is terrible for you and I don't want my daughter to become a victim of the childhood obesity epidemic. So I have set out to start living a healthier lifestyle for her (and her unborn sister). I am not talking low-fat or low-calorie. Just home cooked meals with lots of fruit and vegetables eaten together as a family at the table.
Problem is, healthy food is really EXPENSIVE! That may also be the reason that we eat fast food, because it is cheap. Its so bad but we are not wealthy by any means and every day means living on a budget. Anyway, I came up with a meal plan for the week that included lots of fruits and vegetables and set out today to get all my groceries. Normally I get most of my produce at Wal-mart but most of the time it really lacks in quality and goes bad really fast. And I am really trying to live a "greener" life so Peanut and I went to the local farmer's market this morning to see what we could find.
I really love the idea of buying locally grown produce because I know that the farmers that grow it really put a lot of pride into their products. However, this pride does translate into a higher cost for me. I was planning on making a jelly for homemade scones this week and I needed 4 cups of berries. I was floored when I saw that most booths had berries for $5 a pint! So the jelly idea went out the way. No way I am paying $20 to make jelly. Then I saw that a booth had fresh cauliflower but it was $6 a head! This was crazy talk to me. Suddenly my long list of fresh produce dwindled down to a few things. I did get kohlrabi, carrots, potatoes, fresh peaches from Michigan (they smelled so good), apple wood smoked cheddar cheese from Wisconsin, and fresh baked whole grain bread. It was much pricier than the grocery store but I was happy paying what I did for what I got.
Then we went to the grocery store to get the remainder of our "healthy" ingredients for the week. This grocery trip was about twice as expensive as a normal trip. I did get ground flax seeds, bags of trail mix and nuts, fresh maple syrup, and some other pricier ingredients. I just don't know. I know you can't put a price on the health and well being of your family, but damn, healthy eating sure is expensive.
I think I have learned on my adventures today that I have to take this one step at a time. While I would LOVE to buy almost all of my ingredients from the farmer's market, I know it just isn't going to happen. I still plan on going next week, seeing what they have, seeing what I can afford, and picking the best of that. I still plan on incorporating lots of fruits and vegetables into our diet. I think the most important thing in the coming weeks is going to be eating together as a family whenever we can.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Share your Snacking Ideas

Now that Peanut has decided to get over her hunger strike she has had for the last several months and finally eat the meals I make her, I am now at a loss as to what to feed her for snacks. So I am turning to the Mommy blogosphere to help me out. Please leave a comment and let me know what your kids loved to snack on when they were Peanut's age (22 months). While you are here please come enter my Giveaway. Entries are pretty low and this is my first one so I am hoping to get a good turn out. Thanks!!!!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Pregnancy and Feeling Guilty

As I enter my 8th month of pregnancy, I have begun to feel increasingly guilty that I am not pulling my fair share of the weight. Oh, I certainly am pulling quite a bit of weight, although the majority of it just happens to be inside me. I really just feel guilty about how tired I am and how hard I am starting to find doing the household chores.
When I was pregnant with Peanut I worked in the city and commuted daily until about 7 months. I stopped working because physically and mentally it was just too hard to get up at 4am and take a 1 1/2 hour train ride into the city every day in the middle of summer. The rest of that pregnancy I just took it easy. My house, however, was always immaculate because there was no one there to make it dirty.
Fast forward to now, when, as all you mothers know, the minute I clean something my toddler is always there to mess it up again.
I feel like I am always trying to get the house to be clean and more importantly, STAY clean. I also feel like I will be doing at least one load of laundry every day for the rest of my life. As a stay at home mom, I think it is my job to have the house (relatively) clean, the laundry done, and most days of the week have dinner on the table. After all, my husband works very hard so that I can stay at home with Peanut.
Why do I feel guilty? Because I am so damn TIRED. This pregnancy has been pretty easy so far but these days it feels ten times harder to get out of bed, to go grocery shopping, to clean the bathroom, to carry the laundry baskets up and down the stairs, to stand at the sink doing the dishes, or to prepare a meal in my kitchen without having to stick my head in the freezer. Proving even harder is resisting the temptation to take a nap while Peanut is napping. There is so much to get done, but as soon as that kid's eyes are closed it is like my brain shuts down. I'm like a narcoleptic. I can't physically stay awake any more.
This isn't my first rodeo and I know that as soon as the new baby comes, I will have even less time to rest. That I will be getting far less sleep. And I certainly will have less time to make sure my house is clean or prepare a meal. Why is it that I feel so guilty now?

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tuesday Blog Hops

I love Tuesday Blog Hops! Thanks for stopping by if you are new. Make sure to leave a comment so I can follow you back. Also, be sure to enter my very first Giveaway, courtesy of Belly Charms!!!

Tuesday Tag-Along

Familylicious Reviews

Monday, July 12, 2010

Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes

Tonight we had my mom, dad, brother, and future sister-in-law over for dinner and I made home made lasagna. For dessert I made awesome Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes I adapted from The Barefoot Contessa and they were a real hit. They were SUPER rich and chocolaty so I would save them for a special occasion. Here is the recipe:

adapted from Ina Garten


1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup sugar

4 eggs, at room temperature

16 oz. Hershey's Chocolate Syrup

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1 cup flour

1 teaspoon instant coffee granules

For the Ganache:

1/2 cup heavy cream

8 oz good semisweet chocolate chips

1/2 teaspoon instant coffee granules


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a muffin pan with paper liners. Cream the butter and sugar in a medium bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time. Mix in the chocolate syrup and vanilla. Add the flour and coffee granules and mix until just combined, being careful not to over mix or the cupcakes will be tough.

Scoop the batter into the muffin cups. Fill almost to the top of the muffin cup as the batter will not rise much. Bake for 30 minutes, or until just set. Don't over bake. Let the cupcakes cool in the muffin pan.

For the ganache, cook the heavy cream, chocolate chips, and instant coffee in the top of a double boiler over simmering water, stirring almost constantly until smooth and warm.

Dip the tops of the cupcakes into the ganache. Do not refrigerate.

Yields 12-18 cupcakes, depending on the size of your muffin pan.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Belly Charms Review and Giveaway

This Giveaway Is Now Closed...Thanks to Everyone Who Entered.

Being pregnant and a mom I am always looking for cute maternity clothes and jewelry. Sonya at Belly Charms sent me a great maternity top and a necklace to review.

The shirt is the Tie Dyed Maternity T-Shirt in baby pink. This t-shirt sure is comfy. It is 100% cotton and very stretchy to accomodate my growing belly. The tie dye design is also really cool as it is hand done and each one is unique. I will say that it was a little on the short side, but I'm sure it would have fit perfectly in my first and second trimester. Right now my belly is so big hardly any of my maternity shirts fit. With a long white tank underneath it looked (and felt) great. It also comes in blue for those of you that are expecting a boy.

She also sent me a super cute necklace. The chain is pink with a heart pendant that says "It's a Girl!" I went to a bridal shower today and didn't have to tell anyone what I was having, as they were able to just look at my necklace. I am really starting to get into the mommy and baby jewelry and this piece certainly suits my style. It is simple but really cute and girly, perfect for a mom of one girl (soon to be 2).

Belly Charms specializes in Maternity belly rings and charms. They are longer than the normal belly rings and are made of flexible plastic to accomodate a growing belly. They can even be worn all throughout your pregnancy. I don't have my belly button pierced but I am going to forward her on to all my sisters that do have theirs pierced when they get pregnant. I have my nose pierced and I know how much I love it and don't want it to close up. Now there is no reason for those of you with your belly button pierced to let it close up when you get pregnant. The belly rings start at $3.99 so they are also really affordable.

I was sent a complimentary sample product for my review but my opinions are my own.


Sonya at Belly Charms is generously giving away a sterling silver toe ring to one of my readers.

To enter, first you MUST be a public follower of my blog via google friend connect. Click the "follow" button on the right hand side of my blog if you are not already following me. Please leave a separate comment for each entry. Also make sure to include your email address in the comment so I can contact you if you win.

Mandatory Entry:

1. Visit Belly Charms and tell me about one of their products that you would like to have.

Extra Entries:

2. Subscribe to my blog via email (at the bottom of my blog) for 1 additional entry.

3. Follow Belly Charms via Google Friend Connect for 1 additional entry

4. Like Belly Charms on Facebook for 1 additional entry

5. Follow Belly Charms on Twitter for 1 additional entry

6. Blog about this giveaway and leave the link for it in the comments for 3 additional entries
7. Grab my button and post it on your blog homepage and leave the link in the comments for 3 additional entries

Open to US and Canada

Giveaway ends on July 24, 2010 at 11:59 CST. The winner will be selected by and be notified via email and will have 48 hours to respond back before a new winner is selected.

Corn Fritter Casserole

I am going to a bridal shower for my friend Laura today and we were asked to share a favorite recipe with the bride. I decided to share this recipe for Corn Fritter Casserole. It is a really tasty side dish that goes with just about anything, and my family loves it. I though I would share it here so everyone could try it.

Corn Fritter Casserole

adapted from Cooking Light Magazine


3 tablespoons of butter, softened

3 large egg whites

1 (8 oz.) block cream cheese, softened

1 medium onion, finely chopped

1 red bell pepper, finely chopped

1 can whole kernel corn, drained

1 can cream-style corn

1 box Jiffy corn muffin mix

1/4 tsp. black pepper


Preheat oven to 375 F. Combine first 3 ingredients in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Stir in onion, bell pepper, both canned corns, mixing well. Add muffin mix and black pepper, stirring until well combined. Pour into an 11 x 7 inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375 F for 50 minuters or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Something My Daughter Actually DOES Do

A lot of my posts are about all the things Peanut won't do: take a nap, sleep in general, not have a temper tantrum in public, allow me to use the bathroom with the door closed, ect. Last week I learned that there is something my daughter DOES do that not a lot of kids do. She wears and keeps sunglasses on. Like everywhere we go. She loves, loves, loves her sunglasses. I didn't know that this was something that not every kid does until moms in stores or at the pool would come up to me and ask me how I get her to keep them on. Truth be told, I have no idea. I secretly think she is worried the paparazzi will catch her without makeup on. She has loved to wear her sunglasses since she was a little baby and now has a pair in every color to go with all of her outfits. The other night, in fact, she wore them at her grandma's house and all the way home at night. I still have no idea how she could see anything. She is so goofy, but I love her.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Great Weekend, Not so Great Week

Well after the great long weekend we had, we have not had so great of a week here. Tuesday morning my little Peanut woke up and was laying with me in my bed watching a movie. She was drifting off to sleep (weird for her so early in the morning) when she sat up and proceeded to vomit all over herself, me, the dog, my bed, everywhere. I quickly snatched her up and threw her in the bath to wash her off. I just felt so bad for her as she hasn't thrown up like that since she was a baby. I cleaned her off, put her in new pajamas, stripped my sheets, wiped the dog off, and laid her on my bed to sleep.
At this point she was running a fever but I didn't want to wake her up to take her temperature or give her any Tylenol so I just let her sleep. She slept on my bed for about an hour and when she woke up I gave her a little white grape juice to drink and a little Tylenol to try and get her fever down. Not five minutes late, the juice and the Tylenol came back up all over me again.
I took her temperature and it was 103 so I called the doctor's office and they said to come in. I was covered in vomit so I put her in her bed to lay down and I quickly jumped into the shower to clean off. While I was in the shower I heard her crying so I hurried up and got out. When I went into her room she was vomiting in her bed. I called my husband and desperately asked him to come home to help me clean up all the linens and the dog and help me take her to the doctor (keep in mind I am 31 weeks pregnant).
He came home, I got her cleaned up again, and we rushed into the car to get her to the doctor. I brought a bucket with me and sat in the back with her and I am glad that I did because as soon as we started going she started puking again.
She saw the doctor and the doctor said she had a stomach virus and just to push fluids and slowly introduce crackers if she was hungry. We went home and started to deal with the mess while she slept. From this point until now she has not vomited which was a good thing. But for the first night, she slept in our bed, waking up every couple of hours crying, burning up with her fever.
Yesterday she slept a good portion of the day but she would not let me leave her side. Again last night she slept in my bed while my poor hubby slept in her bed. I did not get much sleep because I kept waking up to check on her. This morning I woke up feeling terrible. My body hurts, my head hurts, I am nauseous, and exhausted. Peanut is feeling much better with no fever and her appetite completely back, thank goodness. My wonderful mother took her for part of the day today so I could get a little break to sleep but my hubby is working at night tonight so we will have to see how it goes later. Let's hope I feel better and that my husband does not get sick. OK, my head hurts now. I guess I will go lay down until Peanut comes home.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Tuesday Blog Hops

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Tuesday Tag-Along

Familylicious Reviews

Monday, July 5, 2010

Why the 4th of July is My New Favorite Holiday

Growing up my Dad always said that the 4th of July was his favorite holiday and I never understood why. I always liked the 4th of July but it was nothing compared to Christmas. After all, you don't get presents on the 4th. Now that I am an adult and have a child I finally understand. My dad loved the 4th of July because he didn't have to GET anyone any presents.
This 4th was so much fun. And really stress free. We "tailgated" at our town's festival and watched the fireworks. My parents, their Friends, my brother and his fiancee, my cousins, my aunt and her friends, my husband's best friend, my husband, my daughter, and myself all gathered together, each brought some food and drinks and had a great time. It was so stress free. We just relaxed, enjoyed the beautiful weather, talked, and ate.
Don't get me wrong. I still love Christmas. But no having to buy gifts, only having to make a couple of easy dishes, no snowstorms, no dress clothes, no going to 10 different peoples houses...the 4th really has taken Christmas' place as my favorite.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Lime Bars

Another Recipe I made for this 4th of July Celebration is Lime Bars. They are tart and sweet and really tasty. Enjoy!

For the Crust:
Vegetable oil, for greasing
1 1/2 sticks butter, diced, kept very cold
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup confectioner's sugar, plus more for garnish
1/4 tsp. salt

For the Filling:
4 large eggs, plus 2 egg yolks
2 cups granulated sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
1 tsp grated lime zest
1 cup fresh lime juice (about 8-10 limes)

1. Make the crust: Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease a 9x13 inch pan with vegetable oil and line with foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang on all sides; grease the foil with oil. Pulse the butter, flour, both sugars, and the salt in a food processor until the dough comes together, about 2-3 minutes. Press evenly into the bottom and about 1/2 inch up the sides of the prepared pan, making sure there are no cracks. Bake until the crust is golden, about 25 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, make the filling: Whisk the whole eggs and yolks, sugar and flour in a bowl until smooth. Whisk in the lime zest and lime juice. Remove the crust from the oven and reduce the temperature to 300 F. Pour the filling over the warm crust and return to the oven. Bake until the filling is just set, 30 to 35 minutes.
3. Let the bars cool in the pan on a rack, then refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours. Lift out of the pan using the foil and slice. Dust with confectioner's sugar before serving.

Makes about 24 bars

Note: I know it is tempting to use bottled lime juice for this recipe but really use fresh limes. It is a little time consuming but so worth the effort. You really can tell the difference.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Naptime is My Nemesis: Part 2

In an effort to make things both easier on myself and Peanut, I have decided to let her sort of decide when she wants to take a nap. I have figured if she is tired enough, she knows where to sleep. She has fallen asleep in her room a few times on her own and mainly has fallen asleep in the car on the way to or on the way home from whatever activity we are doing. I know this is "cheating" but I have figured that she is going through a phase where she wants to assert her independence so I ought to let her have some say as to when she should nap.
Well today my parenting philosophy came back to bite me in the butt. After sleeping for about 8 hours, Peanut woke up chipper as ever. I, however, had been up since 5am with a terrible leg cramp. Not so much fun. We went through our day preparing for company, going to the store, straightening the house, playing outside, and even going to the pool for a little while. I was certain that at some point she would take a nap, even if was on the way home from the store or the pool. Nope, she just kept going.
Let me just say too, I NEED naptime. As a pregnant mother in her third trimester in the middle of summer with a toddler, I NEED a break during the day. I don't care for how long and I don't even care if I don't get a nap myself. I just NEED a break. Today was not my day.
So as 5pm rolled around and Peanut had not yet taken a nap, I figured at this point no nap time would translate into an early bed time. So we went and played outside, had some dinner, and watched a little tv, all the while Peanut running around like the energizer bunny. So at around 6:30pm I took her upstairs for bathtime. I have her a bath, put her in her jammies, and read her some stories, sure that she was ready to fall asleep. She normally goes to bed between 8 and 9, so 7pm with no nap seemed reasonable to me.
I turned on her nighttime music and went to leave her room when she leapt out of her bed hysterical. Normally she is a really good nighttime sleeper and falls asleep on her own. Not tonight. She was running around, reading her books, and playing with her toys. She just did not want to go to sleep tonight. It was like she snuck out when I wasn't looking and got some Starbucks.
Finally, around 8:30pm I had enough. I still hadn't eaten dinner (daddy was working tonight) and I knew she was exhausted. So I finally put her in her bed, turned her music back on, and closed the door. After about 15 minutes of hysterics and banging on her door, she FINALLY fell asleep (on her floor no less). I went in and put her in her bed, snuck out of her room, and breathed a sigh of relief.
I am praying that today was just a fluke. It has to be right? She can't be outgrowing naptime already at just 22 months. Either way, I need a new game plan. I just haven't figured one out yet. Oh well, back to the drawing board.

Follow Me Friday


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Thursday, July 1, 2010

Panic Attacks Suck (or why I am scared to deliver baby number 2)

I am very scared to give birth to my next baby. There, I said it. How I got to this point is a long tale that involves the birth of Peanut. Let me explain.
When I went in for my delivery, I was induced at 41 weeks. I was given an epidural that worked great for several hours. I was progressing on a steady track and everything was going well. And then everything started to fall apart. First, my epidural wore off. The anesthesiologist came in and gave me a second round of epidural. This time it did not work, at least not on one whole half of my body. Then, after a few hours of being in Pitocin induced pain, I felt the need to push. The nurse checked me, said I was fully dilated, and that I could start pushing. So I did for about 30 minutes. Then my doctor came in and checked me again. Except she said to immediately stop pushing, that I was only at 5 cm dilated and that the nurse who checked me had made a mistake, and in fact I was not progressing the way they had wanted me to. She said I would have to wait another hour with not checks and see if I made any progress.
At this point, the epidural was not working at all. For those ladies who have been induced and felt the pain of those induced contractions, they are serious business. I was delirious and at one point my husband said I tried to get up and walk out of the room, even though my legs were numb and I was hooked up to machines. I don't know exactly where I was going, but apparently my brain had better ideas than to give birth that day.
When the doctor came back in after waiting, she said I was not progressing and that we were going to have to do a c-section. I broke down (as I am sure many mothers have done and will do in the future). I felt like a failure and on top of that I was terrified. And then I saw my strong and capable mother break down. That did it for me. I just lost it. I signed the consent forms in a haze and was wheeled to the OR, told that my husband would be in shortly.
When they got me on the operating table, they attempted to do spinal anesthesia where they inject the anesthetic directly into your spine so it takes effect quickly. This did not work. Again, like the epidural, it only worked on one half of my body. I was then told that the baby was in distress and they needed to put me under general anesthesia right away. So they gave me something to paralyze me. They thought I was out because my eyes were shut and I appeared to be out, but I was not. I could hear everything that was going on. The anesthesia was too weak. And then, because I was paralyzed, I couldn't breathe. When they attempted to intubate me to help me breathe, it didn't work. Then I heard panic in everyone's voices. The anesthesia team was yelling at my doctor not to cut yet. They were yelling to get the fiber optic scope. All the while, I was awake and not able to breathe on my own.
I thought for sure that I was going to die. That I would never see this baby that I had spent nine months carrying. That my husband would have to raise her on his own, all the while not knowing what had happened. Finally, I felt them intubate me, cut into my skin, and then I passed out.

I woke up screaming, "I was awake! I was awake!" No one took me seriously until I told them word for word what was said while they thought I was under. My poor husband. He was waiting for them to bring him in to the OR when the next thing he knew they were bringing my daughter in to him. He thought I was dead. Thankfully, everything did work out in the end, but needless to say my first delivery experience was not so much fun.

Which brings me to Panic Attacks. The other day I was looking for a copy of my anesthesia report that the doctor from my first delivery had given me to give to any other doctor I see. Since I am at a new doctor now and we are nearing delivery day I wanted to make sure they had it. So as I brought it out of my filing cabinet and looked at it, I had a massive panic attack. For those of you have never had a panic attack I will try to explain what one feels like.
First you are overcome with an overwhelming sense of doom. Then you feel like you are being pulled underwater and can't breathe. Then you get tunnel vision. Then, for me, I start hysterically and uncontrollably crying. They suck.
So here I was, on the floor of my study, hysterically crying and hyperventilating while my husband was yelling at me to breathe. All this was over a piece of paper. What am I going to do when I actually have to go in for the repeat c-section to deliver THIS baby!!!!

I voiced my concern to the midwife at my doctor's office today and she suggested I use a relaxation and visualization tape called Successful Surgery by Belleruth Napartek. I'm thinking of trying it and I need some opinions. I guess it can't hurt and at this point I am looking for anything that will reduce the chance that I will be a basket case on one of the most important and wonderful days of my life. Because right now, I am scared to deliver baby number 2. And I really don't want to be.