Tuesday, December 30, 2008

as of late

*Chick-Fil-A has a better playground than McDonald's, in my opinion.

*Had Cam's first session with his new Occupational Therapist today. It went really well. I have things to work on, such as playing with glue (he dislikes anything sticky like finger paint, stickers, etc. on his hands) and letting it dry on his hands before we move to play with something else, rather than clean it off.

*Our eating out budget has gone remarkably well. It is actually kind of fun to plan our outings more and it makes them more special. Granted true fun would be eating out whenever we please, but you know what I mean. :)

*Chris came home the other day with a cute baby girl shirt. I think he is going to have a harder time than I in resisting all those cute girl clothes out there!

*My parents saw Valkyrie and loved it, despite the bad reviews. Chris has a theory that the movie was doomed simply because critics can't stand to say anything positive about our boy Tom Cruise, since he has made some weird decisions in the past couple years.

*I love Baked Lays-Cheddar and Sour Cream

*My sister gave me a Rachael Ray magazine subscription for Christmas with the assignment that I have to try one new recipe from it per month. I'll report back when I do and what we think. :)

*I was sad to see 24 hour Christmas music leave KOST 103.5.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

yes, I realize it is just the reality

Today Cam and I stayed from home church due to another runny nose. About a month ago I posted that he was sick for a good 2 weeks. I didn't take him to church, his gym class, his speech class, etc. due to this fact. It wasn't that he felt badly, I just didn't feel right about putting him in a situation with other healthy kids.

Last week he was finally free and clear and so we took him to church. A couple days later, he was sick again. Yes, I realize this is nothing new and this is the reality of nursery. But I have to admit that it is frustrating that other parents don't seem to mind bringing their sick kids to church, therefore exposing every other kid to their cold. I know it is hassle to have to stay home and many times you just want to get out and need a break from a sick little one. But I also know it is the right thing to do in keeping them back. Too bad not everyone agrees...

Saturday, December 27, 2008

the past few days

Here are some pictures from the past few days...

We spent Christmas with my parents. Before heading over, the three of us enjoyed a new tradition of devouring a batch of Land of Nod (see previous post). We then headed over to my parents' house. It was nice and relaxing. It rained all day, but Cam did great despite being stuck inside thanks in large part to his new tent/tunnel play set my parents gave him. Chris even squeezed inside for a quick picture.





The next day Chris and I took him to a park we hadn't been to in quite a while. Cam ate it up and was running around for a good solid hour. I have come to be SOOO incredibly grateful for parks. I have no idea what I would do without them.





Later that night, we left Cam with a sitter and met Jen/Eric, Chalet and her boyfriend (Jim) for dinner. We haven't seen Chalet in a long time as she lives in Chicago. Here is a picture of just us girls. It was fun reliving our Jr. High and High School days. I'm sure the guys weren't THAT into hearing stories about our prank calls and secret hand signals we had for each other, but we sure enjoyed ourselves!



This morning Cam woke up at 5:30. Makes for a looooong morning. The parks would have been too icy, so I we headed out for a walk. It was COLD, COLD, COLD. This picture is actually right before I put ski gloves on both of us after noticing the streams in the gutters were actually streams of ice. But it sure was refreshing to get out and my red cheeked Cam liked it too.



Today Cam and I are on our own as Chris is going golfing with some college buddies and then over to Peyt and Liesl's for a UFC fight to watch some bloody men punch each other. Come on...am I really exaggerating??? UFC is something I shall never understand! But he always has a great time and that is what is important. :)

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

oh my


"Dear me! I am stuffed. I don't know how else my mom can convince you to make those Land of Nod rolls. You are truly missing out if you haven't tried them yet. Oh my belly hurts..."

p.s. If you do make them, I forgot to mention that you should put some foil underneath the pan as they tend to drip and can make your oven a mess. Also, it's important to invert it onto a platter as this is how all the gooey goodness gets through it.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Sunday, December 21, 2008

any and every idea welcome...

A friend of mine recently went back to work after having her child several months ago (she is a teacher). She would really like to stay at home, however a big hurdle for her and her husband would be the health benefits. Unfortunately if she were to quit, they would have to pay for them out of pocket, which can be super expensive.

We both have been brainstorming as to things she could do from home that would not only bring in a few hundred dollars a month (at least) but also allow her to stay at home, which she really would like to do.

Anyway, if you read this blog and have ANY ideas that either you are doing or have heard of other people doing, please leave me a comment so I can pass along any new ideas that maybe we haven't thought of. ANY ideas are welcome!!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

easy and AMAZING!

Yesterday we had our ending Christmas party for my moms group at church. I was supposed to bring a bread dish for the potluck brunch. Susan gave me a recipe that I was a little hesitant to try since I've never made it before.

This is literally the easiest recipe you'll ever make and it is absolutely amazing!! It was less than 5 minutes into the potluck before the whole thing was gone. This isn't to toot my own horn either. It simply looks irresistible and tastes the same..and did I mention it was easy?? So if you need to bring a breakfast dish somewhere or just want to make this for yourself, I guarantee you'll agree with my rave reviews!!

The Land of Nod
20 frozen dinner rolls (I found these by the frozen garlic bread)
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup vanilla instant pudding (just the powder)
2 Tbls. cinnamon
1 stick melted butter.

Grease a bundt pan and place the 20 rolls around the bottom. Sprinkle sugar, pudding and cinnamon over top. Drizzle melted butter. Cover with a damp cloth and leave out on your counter over night. In the morning, bake at 350 for 25 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes then invert onto a platter. Enjoy!!!

Here is a picture of the treat. I don't own a bundt pan, so I just used a casserole dish. It still came out yummy, but I think the bundt pan would make for a prettier presentation. I also drizzled a mixture of powdered sugar and milk over the top. Also, the original recipe calls for raisins and you could also sprinkle nuts on top. I tend to think both of those are nasty in bread, but if you disagree, by all means...!!

Friday, December 19, 2008

the big 3-0!!!!

Today is a big day for my best friend Jen. She turns 30! Since most of my readers know Jen, I just wanted to post a couple great pictures in honor of this momentous day. I posted a few similar ones a while back, but couldn't resist not sharing these!

I was also a part of this photo shoot, but I'll just share these two since it is her big day. Were we actually serious in these poses? Of course! But cut us some slack...we were 16 for gosh sakes!! Happy Birthday Jen!!!


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow...

Today it has snowed and rained off and on all day. No, we aren't that obsessed with Costco that severe weather will never stop us from our weekly lunches, but we were sick of being in the house all morning and my little outdoors guy was needing a change of scenery. What better break than a pizza lunch and yummy samples (and we actually did need quite a few things)??

Monday, December 15, 2008

i've been banned

I'm assuming most married couples share a tube of toothpaste. It just makes sense since you are either sharing a sink or at least have two right next to each other. We have always shared tubes...until last week. I was officially banned from sharing with Chris. The reason? Apparently I don't squeeze the tube correctly and it finally got to him.

My theory? Who cares how you squeeze it as long as it comes out. If it ends up that most of the toothpaste gets squished to the end, then just squish it toward the opening when you need to! Chris maintains that if you start out squishing from the end, it works better and is much more productive. Hmmm...

So here are our tubes. Can you tell whose is whose?? :)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Cam-ese

Cam: Te-we-mo-mane! Te-we-mo-mane!
Kelly: What is he saying?
Chris: I have no idea.
Cam: (getting more agitated) Te-we-mo-mane! Te-we-mo-mane!!!!
Kelly: Oh! Train With No Name! (current favorite book from his Aunt Noonie)

yesterday

Yesterday was a GREAT day because:

*While I had another party to attend, Chris took Cam to his brother's house for both of his daughters' birthday parties. I felt badly not being able to go as sometimes Cam is a two man job at things like this. But Cam did AWESOME! Chris had planned on leaving at 10:30 but didn't end up leaving until 12:00 because he was doing so well. I was sooo happy to hear this and it made it so I could relax and really have fun at my party.

*My party was actually a tea thrown by my friend Jen's sisters in honor of her 30th birthday. It was sooo fun! It was small an intimate and I was able to see two other friends from college that I rarely get to see. Jen's sisters did such a great job in making the day special and highlighting what an amazing friend, sister, mother, and wife Jen is. We have been friends since 7th grade and I am so thankful that we have remained just as close through all of our transitions in life. :)



Emily, Jen, me, Cheryl




*Later that afternoon our good friends Jeremy and Ana (and their daughter Mia) came over for dinner. They are one of those couples where whenever they leave, both Chris and I think, "If only we lived closer...". We both get along equally well with them and conversation just seems to always flow. This was truly a perfect ending to our day! I always forget to take a picture when the four of us are together...maybe someday I'll remember. :(

Friday, December 12, 2008

Christmas...

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? For some reason I do bags for birthdays and mostly wrapping for Christmas. Not sure why.

2. Real tree or artificial? I used to be big on real, but they are too expensive. We finally bought a pre-lit from Costco. While it was a little pricey to start out, it will pay for itself in a few years.

3. When do you take it down? After our last “Christmas” is celebrated. For instance this year we are celebrating on Jan. 3 with Chris’s family.

4. Do you like eggnog? 2 sips, then I'm done. Way too thick. I also don’t care for chai tea/latte because it tastes like Eggnog to me.

5. Favorite gift received as a child? I remember my parents creating a treasure hunt for me and at the end was a new tennis racket.

6. Hardest person to buy for? Chris- I think I know his style, then I end up bombing!

7. Mail or email Christmas cards? I LOVE getting the mail this time of year to see what cards we got...no emails! Even if the emails contain pictures (which for me are a MUST for Christmas cards), it just isn’t the same.

8. Favorite Christmas movie? The Polar Express (or any cheesy made for TV Xmas movie)

9. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? My mom's coffee cake Christmas morning and my sister-in-law’s homemade rolls.

10. Lights on the tree? Honestly, whatever happens to be on the tree I'm looking at looks pretty to me. I grew up with colored, but we have white now.

11. Favorite Christmas song? Walking in a Winter Wonderland

12. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Pre-Cam: either. Post-Cam: stay home

13. Angel or star on top of the Christmas tree? We have never had an angel or ANYTHING on top of our tree. How sad!

14. Favorite ornament theme or color? I love that all of my ornaments came from some period of my life. Some are super ugly, but so sentimental. A coordinating tree might look prettier, but I would much prefer an eclectic one!

15. What do you want for Christmas this year? Just to see Cam have an enjoyable time with everyone...and a restaurant gift card would be nice since we are on our new eating out budget. :)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

"I don't mind a little breeze!"

Before we moved here, several people warned us about the wind. To which my response was, "Oh I don't mind a little breeze." Little naive me. To be honest, that is the one thing we REALLY dislike about living here. It is windy quite often, and we aren't talking a nice little breeze. There have been several days where we literally can't go outside to play because it has been so bad.

I just got back from a very cold and windy walk to the park. Cam is still sick (going on 8 days) so we have had to miss church, speech class, MOPS, MyGym, etc. This has made for many, "What are we going to do today?" questions. Since he feels fine (it is now just the cough/runny nose), I don't want to stay in all day. So we braved the wind and walked up to the park. He had a blast, which made it worth it. But I was also more than happy when we got home.

Cam will nap in about an hour and then we'll start again with, "What should we do ALL afternoon???". Wind...grrrr...

Sunday, December 7, 2008

hot chocolate

Whenever we visit Chris's parents, I always know they'll be well stocked with hot chocolate mix since both my sister-in-law and I love the stuff. This past trip, they had the most delicious mix I have ever tasted. I ended up buying a bag when I got home. I'm currently sipping on my 4th cup of the day. In my defense, I make it with milk, so I along with baby are getting lots of calcium! I do need to cut back as this stuff isn't on the cheap side. If you are a fan of hot chocolate, you can purchase this at Walmart. You won't be disappointed. :)

p.s. I have made it a few times with whole milk. Soooo much better, but so evil I know!

worth the spam

Last night Chris and I got to go to a dinner and a movie (Four Christmases...not really worth it). We went to Claim Jumpers because I had a coupon where we received $10 off a purchase of $25 or more. So our $27 meal ended up costing $17!!

I received the coupon through my email because I signed up for the Claim Jumpers club. I've actually started doing this with any restaurant that offers it. Normally I wouldn't because I know that it will mean several emails from them that aren't coupons, but rather advertisements. But I decided that deleting these spam emails would be worth it to get a few coupons now and then. Here are the ones we have received so far:

Macaroni Grill: Free appitizer on our next visit
Pat and Oscar's: Free dozen breadsticks
Qdoba: Free chips/salsa on our next visit

So while I may have to delete a few more spam, I sure didn't mind last night as we were eating our way through a great meal!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

correction

I need to make a correction to yesterday's blog, or rather an update. As of yesterday, Cam had never shown signs of feeling sick when he had a fever. That changed today. Poor thing has just been miserable, except for the short time Motrin has kicked in. He has never been quite this sick, so Chris and I are settling into bed, knowing we might very well be up a lot of the night as he has already woken up twice in an hour.

Here we are watching Max and Ruby, although sometimes even this wasn't enough to make him feel better.



This afternoon I was trying to figure out something that would make him happy. He kept saying "bye, bye", meaning he wanted to go somewhere. I just didn't know where to go. So we ended up around the corner at Stater Bros. wheeling him around in their kid-grocery cart (it has a little car in front for him to ride in). He loves riding in these! I didn't really have anything to get, but it made him happy and took up some time before bed. As we strolled by the deli, I bought some egg salad, which I've been craving for a while now. I'm excited to eat it tomorrow, but sure wish it wasn't so pricey. If anyone has a good recipe for egg salad, I would love to have it so I don't have to spend $4 on a tiny container!

Monday, December 1, 2008

a few more pictures

Here are a few cute pictures from Thanksgiving. We always get super excited when Cam is social with others, especially his cousins. I thought it was so adorable that he wanted to pull his cousin in the wagon!




Here he is with his grandma. He had discovered a fun game of throwing rocks into the puddles.



A few other tidbits:

*Went over to my mom's this morning and had the best apple cider. She just buys the regular bottled stuff but then adds cinnamon sticks and cloves while it cooks over the stove. She has tried to pass it off to me as "dessert", to which I had to quickly put her in her place. Yes, it is sweet, but dessert?? Sorry mom.

*My current favorite Christmas album is Christmas with the Rat Pack.

*Cam has been running a high fever accompanied by a bad cough. Poor thing. The good part is that he doesn't seem to notice. You would think he would just want to laze around and sleep. Nope. Not only did he still only sleep 45 minutes all day, but he was still go, go, go!!

*We have started using corn tortillas when we make tacos. Chris will cook them over the open stove flame until they get a few charcoaled edges. So yummy!

*I had a huge long Target list today, drove the 20 minutes to get there, then realized I had forgot my wallet at home. Ugh.

*Watched "The Shooter" (with Mark Wahlberg) tonight. Very good.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

prettiest house on the block

My family was never one to go all out in decorating the outside of our house for Christmas. I only remember putting up lights a few years and this just consisted of one strand outlining our front door. But you know what? I loved every time we turned the corner and I saw that one strand. I remember thinking we had the most beautiful house. I guess when it is your own place, no matter how many lights you put up, what you end up with is always beautiful.

I actually am still the same way. All I do at our home now is put lights in a little shrub right outside our door. But for some reason I think it looks so pretty and I love driving up to our home in the dark. Yes, it pales in comparison to the job some of our neighbors have done, but I don't care. It's perfect for me.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

thanksgiving #1

We returned last night from a couple of nights spent with Chris's family. I'll have more pictures in a few days as my sister-in-law was able to take quite a few good ones. Here are just a couple random ones I snapped with our little camera.

After the big meal, Chris, his brother, and his dad had a chipping (I think that is what you call it) contest in the backyard while their grandpa watched from the sidelines, heckling and adding a good dose of humor to the competition.



One thing we were not in lack of was dessert. There were a total of 10 adults and here was our dessert spread. Do you think we had enough?? :)



I'll have more pictures another time. Tomorrow we'll celebrate with my parents.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

it's beginning to look...

...a lot like Christmas!!! Don't you love hanging ornaments? Cam does...click here

Monday, November 24, 2008

sunday

Here are a couple of pics from yesterday. We drove out to OC to have lunch with some friends. We really enjoyed our visit with them. The day overall was a pretty rough one with Cam (I don't quite have the energy to go into all the details, plus I don't want to be a Debbie Downer)...but I did think these pictures were worth posting.

As soon as Cam discovered that this game involved turning and pulling knobs...he was in! He spent quite a bit of time here, which meant more time for us to visit. :)



Here we are with Natalie/Kyle (front) and Steve/Brenda. Steve has been a business mentor/good friend for Chris and Kyle for a few years. They meet a few times a year and we have been trying to find a time for the spouses to join. It finally worked out and we enjoyed a nice visit, and Brenda's delicious homemade spaghetti!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

tips

Last night Chris and I were able to get away to Macaroni Grill for dinner while my mom watched Cam. Our waiter was GREAT! It got me to thinking about what makes a "great" waiter. I think it is probably different for everyone. I can say that for Chris, the main thing that he notices is if the waiter keeps on top of his drink refills. Chris is one that will stop mid-meal and wait until his drink is refilled because he has to have something sweet with what he is eating. So if he ends up having to wait several minutes while his food gets cold, it's not a good thing. I think for me, the thing I like the most is my food to come hot (I mean steaming hot) and I can tell it hasn't been sitting under the heat lamp for a long time.

Now this brings me to tipping. We always tip (at least now we do-don't get me started on how horrible and tacky I was in high school), but in cases like last night, we usually will double the tax and then add a few bucks. If the waiter wasn't very good, we'll just double the tax and that's it. I've never had a situation so bad where I hesitated tipping at all. My mom had a recent experience with her friends in which the waiter was rude and condescending. I wonder what I would have done in that situation. Have you ever not tipped because it has been so bad??

p.s. Could you not just make a meal off of Macaroni's bread?? Yum!!
p.p.s. Not sure if you can tell what time I wrote this blog, but let's just say I needed something to do while Chris went in and rocked Cam. Nothing more relaxing on a Sunday morning then getting woken up at 5:09.

Friday, November 21, 2008

just a few...

Ok, so I promise I won't post pictures EVERY time we go to Disneyland as there is only so much one can see of Main Street and carousels! But I just had to post a few from our trip yesterday. Luckily It's a Small World was open. Cam loved it and it was so fun to see his little head darting back and forth, taking it all in. :)

Loves to be on daddy's shoulders!




Wednesday, November 19, 2008

some bullets

*After hearing about our great day at Disneyland last week, Chris's parents offered to get us passes for Christmas! We are going to get them early so that we can go as much as possible before the baby. We are actually going again tomorrow, except this time with Chris and my mom. I'm so excited for them to experience it with Cam!

*Last night Chris made dinner. It was sooo yummy! He gave it a "9" and I a "10". We love Pillsbury pizza crust and like to experiment with toppings. So last night he put Alfredo sauce, jack cheese, mozzarella, chicken, sundried tomatoes, green onions, and bacon (I know...not the healthiest). It turned out great! We realized, however, that most of the toppings were overpowered by the flavor of the bacon. Not that I was complaining, but it is a good thing to remember for the future. Bacon on things is going to taste like bacon!!!



*Cam slept for 1 hour 45 min. today. Oh I wish I knew how to recreate this every day!

*When we moved to our home, we did some rearranging of the layout. Typically homes come with two living areas. Usually the "formal" living area is for looks only and seems like such a waste of space. So we ended up creating one big living area and moving the dining into the kitchen. Because of this, our fire place is in the dining room, which bums me out. So instead of snuggling up on the couch next to the fire, I have to cozy up in a dining room chair. Oh well, I still prefer our arrangement. Here is my "cozy corner" set up.



*Every time we drive by the exit used for church, Cam says "bye, bye, church!" (due to the fact that he is not the biggest fan of church/nursery). This morning as we approached...
Cam: Bye, bye, church!
Kelly: Actually, this morning we are going to church! It will be fun!!
Cam: Bye, bye, fun!!
Apparently there is no convincing. :)

*We all have our little pet peeves about our spouses. One of Chris's is that I am constantly leaving 1/2 empty water bottles around the house without the lids. On more than one occasion, he has discovered this by accidently knocking it over and thereby spilling it. Oops.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

tagged

So I was tagged by Karen and am posting an old pic from my archives. This is pic of the cutest, most thoughtful present I got in the mail from my sister back in 2004. I was working as a high school counselor and at the same time, finishing up grad school, specifically my credential in School Psychology. I had 75 hours to complete in a short amount of time. I was so stressed because completing that number of hours as a full time intern would have been simple, but with a full time job, it was very difficult to squeeze it all in. On top of that, I wasn't that into school psychology and was mainly finishing it because I had already started and it would be a good back up credential to have.

Anyway, my sweet sister made this cute road map for me to track my hours. It had little pictures of my family along the way yelling encouraging things to me. It meant so much to me and it was fun to see my progress as I got closer to completion.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

the envelope

Chris and I have never budgeted. It isn't that we have been rolling in cash since day one. We just both have never been spenders. This probably isn't that surprising seeing as I often talk about how cheap I can be. :) However over the past several months we realized that we had been spending more than we would have liked on eating out. Not so much restaurant meals, but we would get frozen yogurt here, a lunch at Chipotle there, etc. I'm not sure how much we spent, but it seemed too much and didn't to fall into "being wise with your money" category in which we wanted to remain.

So we decided eating out was one area where we would start a budget. We first thought of creating a spreadsheet, but then figured the simplest way was the good old fashioned envelope system. So we decided on our amount, put the cash into our envelope, and so far it as worked great! It makes you plan so much more and really enjoy when you do eat out (I guess that's kind of a "duh" comment as that's the point!).

Today we did our Palm Springs outing and were really in the mood for CPK. We split a pizza but unfortunately we both gave it a "5" as it didn't have much taste. Kind of a bummer since our eating out is less frequent...but you win some you lose some, huh? :)



After lunch we took Cam to the Palm Desert mall to play...

Saturday, November 15, 2008

peanut butter pasta

Over the past few months, Chris has started jogging in the mornings while Cam and I go for our walks. He has also started eating lighter. I wouldn't say he is dieting, because that to me involves limiting what foods you can have. He is basically eating the same things as usual, but in smaller quantities, which is the way we have been told for years we are supposed to do it. :)

Anyway, he has lost about 25 pounds so far and I can really tell a difference. One thing he needs to help him not get burned out is one meal a week where he can eat whatever he wants. This week he decided on my peanut butter pasta (that is what we call it...I think the name is more like Thai pasta). The sauce is basically peanut butter, honey, soy sauce, ginger, etc. It is VERY tasty and relatively easy to make. For dessert, he has decided on Frugos Frozen Yogurt since the one close to us finally opened up. Unfortunately I won't be joining him this meal as both of those (while I used to love them) have not been on my "like" list of foods this pregnancy. :)

I added green onions and chicken.


p.s. Yes, I know this picture may not look that appetizing. I don't have the time, nor interest in researching lighting for my food pictures and how I could improve the look. I think even if it isn't the best picture, it is still more interesting to see what I am describing.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

horsies! horsies!

I'm laying in bed, utterly pooped. But pooped in a great way. We had such a fun day. We got to Disneyland at 10:00 and stayed until about 3:00. Cameron did so well! Both parks weren't very crowded and we were able to go on several rides. Cameron's favorite, of course, was the carousel, both at CA Adventure and Disneylanad. As soon as he saw it, he started saying, "Horsies! Horsies!".

We felt like we had a nice, relaxing time and didn't feel pressured to see everything seeing as we didn't have to pay for our tickets. We enjoyed a nice lunch and walked around at our own pace. It was so fun to catch up with Kristen and hang out just the three of us. I'm so thankful I went. They only thing we were disappointed in was not being able to go on Peter Pan (the line was too long) and It's a Small World (under repairs). It was also interesting to see things through the eyes of little Ella and Cameron. For instance, I didn't realize rides like Snow White were so dark, not theme-wise, but literally dark. Both kids did ok, but you just don't remember the rides in that way because the last time I went, I was obviously not concerned about how a child would react!

Kristen's cousin took this picture. It was so awesome that he just slid us right in when it would have cost us a couple hundred dollars to all go!


I was a little sketchy about doing the t-cups but I knew Cam would like it. It isn't that bad as long as you don't turn the wheel in the middle and just let the ride glide you around.


Hands down Cam's favorite ride. He has never been good at smiling on command for a picture, so I was so excited Kristen got this one!


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

heartbeats and disneyland

We had our second OB visit today. It went smoothly and it was fun to see how much our little one has grown, in addition to the fun in hearing her/his heartbeat. We have the official ultrasound scheduled for Dec. 23 in which we will find out the sex. I can hardly wait!

Tomorrow Cam and I are headed on a grand adventure. We are going to Disneyland with Jen, her daughter Ella, and Kristen (my friend visiting from Washington). Kristen's cousin is going to get us all in for free as he is employed by Disney. What a treat!! I'll be honest and say I was hesitant at first when I received the invitation. The cycle of worries as to how Cam will do started with a vengeance. But I'm under strict instructions by both that I'm not allowed to stress or worry. So far so good as I'm really looking forward to the day. Hopefully I'll have some great pictures to share tomorrow!!

Monday, November 10, 2008

meat fest 2008

*Saturday we headed out to Palm Springs for the afternoon. It is nice to have our little lunch/park ritual back since the weather is absolutely beautiful there now.



*We went to my parent's church on Sunday to the 8:00 service. They have three services and it is amazing how dead the 8:00 is but how packed the 9:30 is. We were definitely one of the youngest at the 8:00!!

*On Sunday, we purchased a pound of deli roast beef for $6.99 at Staters. Later, Chris saw an ad which stated they were selling beef tri-tip for only $1.99 a pound. As we thought about it, we realized that if we bought several pounds, bbq'd them, then sliced them for sandwiches, we would be saving about $5 a pound for lunch meat!!! So began Meat Fest 2008. We purchased 6 lbs. yesterday and will purchase another 10 lbs tomorrow. We'll obviously freeze most of it, but we'll have lunch meat for a long time at a cheap price!!



*Last night we went to my mom's for dinner and she had Christmas music playing when we arrived. Wonderful!!

*We had Cam's Occupational Therapist eval today and he will start seeing the OT twice per week hopefully soon. It went very well and I'm excited about this new OT as he seems very knowledgeable and able to help Cam with several issues.

*Just learned Circuit City filed for bankruptcy. We aren't frequent shoppers, but I thought it was interesting.

*Our morning walks have turned cold! I'm having a hard time finding thick (ski like) mittens for Cam.

*Cam has started only sleeping 30-45 minutes all day long. This has made him a such a crankster come early evening, which is a bummer b/c that used to be his most fun/happiest time of day. It's also a bummer b/c I would sure like a longer break during the day!

*I love that you can check out magazines at the library! I love reading them but hate spending $3-4 on each one.

*I was at the park the other day and overheard a woman (from out of state) commenting to her friend, "I had to drive to Thousand Oaks and then back to San Bernardino. I was gripping that steering wheel, white knuckled, the whole way!". Is our freeway driving really that scary???

Sunday, November 9, 2008

sweet taste of failure

I'm done. I'm really done. Yes, we have made great progress with Cam's eating as far as the variety of foods he'll now eat. However "he'll eat" should be followed by the fact that it is a struggle every single meal time to get him to eat these foods. Crying, occasional screaming, and raisin bribery are common place. Today at lunch he refused to eat his lunch (shredded pork, beans, peas). So he didn't eat. I tried the meal twice and no luck.

So Chris and I decided to take him for a walk b/c he was beyond irritable due, we think, to hunger. However the walk was flop and we came home early and...yes...gave in. PB sandwich? Here you go. Banana? Here you go. Cereal? Why not. We failed and probably ruined the progress we had made in getting him to realize that he needs to eat what we give him.

And tonight we are going to my mom's for dinner. Will we attempt some new foods? Nope. I'm done for today. Tomorrow sounds like a great day to begin this food ordeal again. But today, we are ok with failure. We just want a peaceful dinner.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

let's pray!

We have been teaching Cam to pray before our meals over the past couple of weeks. He is beginning to get the hang of it, but hasn't quite got the closing of the eyes concept. Take a look...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

cookbooks

One of my favorite things to do at other people's houses is to look through their cookbooks. I find it so enjoyable to browse through recipes, especially ones with pictures. My favorite place to do this is at my mother-in-law's house. She has loads of books stuffed with lots of recipe clippings. I could sit in their recliner for hours just going through each book.

My favorite cookbooks that I use are actually just the $3.99 ones you see in the check out line of the grocery store. I have found these to be so easy and delicious.



Whenever I make a recipe from any cookbook, I'll write the date I made it, the rating Chris and I gave it (1-10), and any notes on the actual recipe. When I'm searching for a recipe in the future, it is helpful to know what we thought of it previously.



My other favorite cookbook/magazine is Taste of Home. For some reason, I think it is fun to read the story behind each recipe such as, "My aunt Gertrude used to make this casserole every Tuesday night for her Bingo nights..." I think it is fun to envision the recipe I want to make having been made somewhere in North Dakota on Bingo
Night. :)

Lastly, check out this hot mama. Back when my dad was running for office, the campaign created this cooking pamphlet with my mom on the front (and my family on the left) with family recipes. I keep this more for sentimental reasons, but I actually do use a couple recipes from it including Big Mommy's Coffee Cake and a fabulous hot fudge recipe!



p.s. I know this is a rather shallow comment considering a couple of nights ago was such a monumental night for the Obama family, but wasn't Michelle's dress beautiful!!?

Monday, November 3, 2008

grosses me out

The other day Chris informed me that every time I say something, "grosses me out", he is going to charge me 25 cents. Apparently he feels like I use the phrase far too liberally, in addition to thinking the things I'm referring to are pretty ridiculous. But I contend that they really are gross, so I won't mind paying up! Here are a few examples:

*"It grosses me out when people crack their knuckles...oh and feet are the worst to hear crack!"

*"That picture of the McDonald's McGriddle grosses me out. The egg in the sandwich is folded like a blanket. So unnatural. Gross."

*"That Gatorade commercial grosses me out where people are sweating different bright colors. I can't even watch it!"

*"That grosses me out to see three patties on that hamburger. You would have to pay me to take a bite. Nasty."

Sunday, November 2, 2008

change of scenery

We just got back from a very fun weekend with Chris's aunt Noonie and Deb (whom we consider to be family as well). Noonie lives up north right on the beach. After arriving mid morning on Saturday, the three of them took off to golf for the afternoon while Cam and I stayed back. That evening we all enjoyed a wonderful steak dinner after I had put Cam down for bed. Sunday morning they left for another round golf and Cam and I hung back.

You might be wondering, "How is that fun for you? They got to have all the fun and you had to stay back?". Well, Cam and I actually had a GREAT time and here is the logic. Had I stayed back at our house, I would have done the typical things we always do (park, walks, run around outside, etc.). So why not have a change of scenery and instead of walking around our same block, get to walk by the ocean...and visit new parks...and run around on the pier instead of our front yard? I loved getting Cam away and letting him explore new things. So yes, I didn't participate in the fun with Chris and his family, but Cam and I had a great time just the two of us. And I then got to enjoy time with Noonie and Deb after he was in bed and today at lunch! Best of both worlds, if you ask me!!

The golfers:




Cam LOVED the ocean. We sat on the beach for a quite a while as he watched the waves:




Feeding Tessa:


Thanks Noonie and Deb!!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

halloween

Last night we took Cam to Trinity's Halloween carnival. We both didn't have our hopes up as we thought Cam wouldn't last long with the crowds. To our delight,and thanks to the stroller, he lasted for 2 hours. He seemed to really enjoy being strolled around, looking at the hundreds of people milling about.

Here are a couple of pics from the evening. Jen and Eric drove out to go so it was fun to hang out with them all evening. Cam is wearing a Dalmation costume my mom found at a yard sale last year. It is actually supposed to be pants, but as you can tell, our little guy filled it out a little too much. Oh well. He looked cute and was I thankful to not have to buy a costume just for one evening of wear!




cute p.s. As Chris was changing Cam out of his costume and into his pajamas, Cam said "Bye, bye puppy!". Ahhh...so sweet.