A new year. A fresh page. It’s been a LONG time since I’ve posted on here! I’ve got so many half written posts saved in my drafts folder – I just never managed to finish any of them.
2016 was an interesting year (aren’t they all though?). Many milestones were achieved, birthday celebrated, holidays enjoyed. Mostly though, it felt like a year of just surviving. I gained new perspectives, learned I could stretch my patience more, and developed an appreciation for many things I never gave much thought to previously. I’m grateful for all the learning I did this past year, but I am hoping 2017 is a little gentler on us.
We are looking forward to 2017 though – right now it’s fresh and new and we’re seeing it with rose colored glasses. There will be many trials and tribulations, bumps and curves along the road – they’re still far off and blurry on our horizon. Hopefully we can carry forward what we’ve learned this past year to this year to make it a little “easier” – only time will tell.
I hope to be back in this space more frequently this year. Sharing the kids’ latest antics, some completed DIYs, maybe some recipes?
But for now I just wanted to say Happy New Year to any of you who have stuck around – I know this blog as been quiet for far too long! Sending warmest wishes for a happy and healthy 2017! Looking forward to connecting more often in the new year! 🙂
By the time I realized I hadn’t posted photos from week 8 it was almost the end of week 9, so I figured I just post them together again. Here’s to being more organized next week, haha! 😉
The weather was so warm we actually washed our cars. The only downside was that it got cold again a couple days later and the kids were so upset they had to stay inside again.
Miss J – Does not like smiling for the camera!
Miss A – wearing her brother’s coat. Such a goofball!
Monster – still being forced to wear the hat and pose for photos,haha.
There’s no snow on the ground this week, but still not as warm as it was the week before. If it’s not too cold, windy, or rainy we were outside though!
Miss J – Got a smile this time!
I picked up the chevron baby blanket again. I am really enjoying the color combination more than I thought I would. It’s just been slow going…only about a quarter of the way done with it. Will hopefully have it finished by A & J’s second birthday, but probably not before summer. I am trying to only work on one project at a time, but I am finding myself yearning for another project to work on when I find the blanket becoming too monotonous. So I think I might break my “one project” rule and find something else to work on as well.
I’m currently reading “Where’d You Go, Bernadette” by Maria Semple. So far it is a quick, fun read – which is exactly what I was going for! It’s been a tough winter and I needed something a little more light-hearted like this. 🙂
Linking up with Ginny, as usual. 🙂
Now that we’re almost halfway through Lent, now seemed like a good time share some of our favorite vegetarian meals. You know – in case you’re like me and finding yourself in a recipe slump. 😉
- Hearty Black Bean Quesadillas – These are amazing. They are best when you use cilantro, but I often don’t have any on hand and just make it without and they are still super good! The girls gobble these up (seriously – sometimes they each eat an entire one) and they freeze very well too.
- Vegan Lentil Soup – Seriously the best lentil soup I’ve ever had. I always skip the puree step, because I’m lazy and I prefer a chunkier soup. I always make a double batch of this so I can enjoy it for lunch the rest of the week.
- Broiled Salmon with Fruit Salsa – I am not a huge salmon fan, but I eat it because it’s so good for you. The rest of my family just naturally enjoys it (you should see Miss A gobble this down). The fruit salsa is such a cheery side to see during these dreary, rainy days we’ve been having here lately!
- Creamy Tomato and Spinach Pasta – This one is sooo good. I’ve frequently made it with frozen spinach when I don’t have fresh on hand and it’s just as good. If you go that route just remember to squeeze as much water out of it as you can.
- Crock Pot Black Bean Soup – Admittedly, I have no recipe for this one. I just sort of wing it. Throw a pound of black beans in the crock pot, a diced onion, some diced carrots, a diced bell pepper if I’ve got one in the fridge, followed by equal parts diced tomatoes and water. Add salt and pepper to taste, along with a pinch or two of crushed red pepper. Cook on low for 7-8 hours. Delicious!
What are some of your favorite vegetarian recipes?
Posting these late again! This week the kids all had some kind of virus, so we spent WAY too much time watching TV. Mainly because if any of them ran around too much they’d throw up. I thought on Thursday everyone was finally feeling better so we ventured out for a change of scenery. Let’s just say I was wrong and that was a big mistake. Hoping to never have a repeat of that! 😉
Please note the chair in the corner J used to get to Monster. She loves her brother.
All the photos I took of Miss A this week were blurry. This was the best. When Miss A needs a break from her siblings and goes and sits in this corner.
Smiling, because of all the TV he go to watch!
Miss J likes to dress herself. The girl loves underwear & swimsuit bottoms!
While I’d love to knock out a couple thoughtful, in-depth posts about life right now, I just can’t seem to make it happen. So I thought I’d link up with Kelly and give you a random, abbreviated look into our life right now.
- It is so hard to believe that he’s going to be 5 next month! He’ll start Kindergarten in the Fall. Crazy!
- Last week he told me that he didn’t want to go to Kindergarten. When I asked him why he said “At preschool they told us you have to sit still and be quiet for a long time at Kindergarten. I don’t think I’d like to do that, so how about you just homeschool me?”
- He has gotten much better at playing with the sisters (most of the time!). It probably helps that they can run and climb now, and that he is one of their favorite people.
- He has also taken an interest in learning how to write now. He can write his name and lately has been asking how to spell at lot of things. I am SO excited for this stage!!
- Miss A
- This little lady loves her brother. Every morning when she wakes up the first thing she wants to do is give him a hug. And if Monster and Miss J aren’t up she wants to wake them up.
- She loves to fight with her sister though. She will often bite Miss J if she has a toy that she wants. We’re working on breaking this habit but it’s taking way longer than we’d like, unfortunately.
- Miss J
- This little lady loves to babble. We think she’s going to be a taker like her brother once she starts saying more words.
- She also loves to tuck her teddy bears into bed…blanket and all. It’s so cute!
- We are hoping to move closer to Handyman Husband’s workplace when our lease here is up. So we’ve been making more of an effort to declutter. We’ve got several bags and boxes ready to donate, with more to come. It feels so great to be getting rid of stuff! This is something we’ve been meaning to do forever, but having a potential upcoming move is really helping to keep us motivated!
- I’ve been trying to develop a meal plan to make life a little less stressful and maybe reduce our weekly grocery bill as well. It is taking longer than I thought it would. I’m finding that “one pot” recipes work best for with our lifestyle right now. Probably by the time I get it hammered out it’ll be summer and time for a new set of recipes! Got any favorite “one pot” recipes you’d like to share?
- I’m currently riding a high from completing Monster’s R2D2 hat in a relatively short time frame (despite the fact that he is still only wearing it under duress)!
- So of course I’m adding more crochet/knit projects to my “to do” list for the year. Because I’m ridiculous like that.
- I also want to learn calligraphy/hand-lettering (not sure if there is a difference between the two)? I’m always trying to come up with a “skill set” that I could turn into a small side business. Still looking for my niche.
- Some articles I’ve been enjoying lately.
- Have you heard of Boxed.com? It’s a bulk dry goods retail site. We’ve used it a couple times since our move and I LOVE it! We have a Costco membership, but our nearest Costco now is 40 minutes a way. Not the end of the world by any means, but we’ve definitely been making our trips there fewer and farther between. Boxed has similar dry goods that we get at Costco and they deliver right to your door! I’ll take that any day! Especially if it frees up space in the car for more product/refrigerated/freezer items when we make our Costco trips. Orders over $50 ship for free and you usually get it within 2-3 days of placing your order. There is no membership fee to order. If you use my code (B75CW) you’ll get $10 off your first order. (Disclaimer: I will receive some Boxed.com credit if you use my code. Boxed did not ask me to review/advertise their service – it’s just something I’ve found beneficial and wanted to pass along.)
I finished the R2d2 hat the same week I started it, but have been unable to find my finishing needle so I could “finish” the hat. Monster insisted on wearing it outside & to preschool in it’s unfinished state – much to my embarrassment.
This past weekend I finally gave up and bought a new pack of finishing needles so I could put the pieces together. It came out pretty well, in my humble opinion. Of course – Monster doesn’t like it anymore and is refusing to wear it. He had to be coerced in to wearing it for the photo above! His main objection appears to be the projector probe. He told me he was “afraid the other kids in his preschool would make fun of him for it.” Which makes my heart sad (that kids in preschool poke fun at each other already)! But, I am going to remove that bit in the hopes that he’ll want to wear it again.
I forgot to take a picture of it with the hat, but I am currently reading Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. A sweet friend sent it to me not long before we moved. I’ve looked for it several times since moving and couldn’t find it (are you noticing a theme here, haha?) and just recently found it in our last remaining unmarked box, of course! Oddly enough, I read a review of it on a book blog about a week before I was surprised with it in the mail AND the evening after I started reading it, it happened to be listed on as a non-fiction book worth reading. So I’m taking both of those as an omen that I need this book in my life right now. I’m really enjoying it and so far it’s a soothing balm to my frazzled soul.
As always, linking up with Ginny.
Despite almost ALWAYS being at home, I managed to forget to post last weeks portraits. But I did remember to snap the pictures – so hooray for that!
(Oh – and just ignore ALL the mess in the background. Can’t wait for summer when we can spend more time outside and less time messing up the house! 😉 )
Miss A – This girl LOVES necklaces
Monster being photobombed
Miss J – Cheesin’
Miss A – She can say “cheese” now!
Miss J – This is her brother’s blanket but she ALWAYS steals it.
Monster has really gotten into sweater vests this week. Hoping this lasts because it makes my heart happy!
Mother nature provided the theme for this week – SNOW!
We have been out to play in the snow at least once a day (usually more) since Sunday. After their first initial shock, the girls decided it wasn’t so bad after all. Our biggest issue now is that everyone wants to use the same shovel – the little el cheapo kid sized shovel I bought at Target a few years ago for a dollar. Definitely should have bought more – will have to keep my eye open for them the next time we go there!
Miss A – all smiles!
Miss J – told me “no” everytime I asked her to smile for a picture.
Monster – throwing snowballs is his favorite.
Before Thanksgiving I started and frogged an R2D2 hat for Monster about half a dozen times before I finally gave up on making him one. He stopped asking about it, so I assumed he’d forgotten.
Then of course, while I was getting the kids ready to go play in the snow on Monday afternoon he asked about it. “Did you finish my R2D2 hat, Mommy?” Of course we had several other hats for him to wear, but while we were outside he couldn’t help but mention “he really wished he was a wearing an R2D2 hat with earflaps on it.” Talk about a guilt trip!
So I found a free pattern (with earflaps!) online and I’m almost done with the hat!! I’m hoping to have it all finished up by the weekend. It looks like it will be a perfect fit. I’m tempted to make some modifications to it to make it a little larger, but I keep reminding myself that there are two other little ones who might someday want to wear it, so if he only wears it one season it’s ok!!
I’m still plugging along reading Frugavore. I am very blessed to be able to work part-time from home, but that takes up most of my “free time” these days. After I get my paid work done, there’s not much time left for much else! Given the alternative, it’s a good problem to have, I suppose. 🙂
As always, linking up with Ginny.