Monday, June 30, 2008

Broccoli Chicken Skillet


Last week I tried a recipe I had seen in a magazine involving Campbell’s soup. And Oh Lordy let me tell you that it was the yummiest and easiest thing…you have got to try this! It is an excellent way to use up leftovers that you may have on hand which is exactly why I used this. Here is how you make it:

½ box linguine noodles, cooked according to package directions
1 cup broccoli florets
2 tbsp butter
1 lb. chicken breast, cubed
1 can cream of mushroom soup
½ cup milk
½ c parmesan cheese
Black pepper to taste

Cook the linguine and 4 minutes prior to completion add the broccoli to the pasta water to cook. Brown chicken in butter in skillet on medium-high heat. (If you use leftover pasta like I did, I just threw the broccoli in with the chicken to cook once the chicken was cooked). Once the chicken is done, stir the soup and milk and cheese into the skillet and cook until bubbly. Toss with the noodles and Voila! Its just that simple. The thing I liked about this recipe was that the soup makes it super creamy without tasking mushroom soupy. Also, its versatile…you could add any shape of pasta and a variety of different veggies…peas, carrots, asparagus, you name it. So it is a great way to use your leftovers in a new way that is super quick and easy.
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Sunday, June 29, 2008

Calvin's Dedication

Today we celebrated Calvin being dedicated to God and announced our intentions of dedicating our lives to raising him to be a fine young Christian. Boy I look at everyone around us and am simply in awe of how blessed we are. It was so nice to have our moms and dads there as well as my sisters, Nick's Aunt Bev and my Grandma Jean and of course Aunt Jaime...what a solid support system we have for our children!

Here we are with our sweet little boy

And here's our sweet little boy trying to eat my face

Here we are during the dedication

Here is Pastor Chuck dedicating Calvin to God

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Monday, June 23, 2008

Chicago!

Last weekend we took the kids to Chicago. I was a little skeptical going as I didn’t want to spend vast amounts of money but I decided to let my frugal guard down and just enjoy the weekend. And boy did we have fun! We went to Ikea and did some shopping as well as Trader Joe’s before heading downtown. There we parked (Which by the way cost us a whole $.75) and went to Millenium Park and the Garden of the Art Institute of Chicago. We had so much fun! There were so many neat things to see and do and there was a fountain for Emma to play in…she loved it! The thing I loved about Emma playing in the fountain was that she didn’t seem to mind the scads of other kids surrounding her, lately she has been a little intimidated by other kids. Anyway, we had such a wonderful time! We look at one another on the way home from days like this and revel at all of God's blessings and wonder if there is a family as wonderful as ours. Um, I think not.

Here is a picture of the bean in the park...it is sooo neat! This is a picture Nick took of me at the beanAnd here we are inside of the bean...this is kind of hard to explain

This is the picture of the fountain...the pictures are of people in Chicago and they change periodically. It really is amazing! Here she is at the base of the fountain

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Saturday, June 21, 2008

Everyone Loves a Man Who is Free AND Easy

These pictures were from Father's Day...don't you just love my husband? I think he is the funniest person in the world...anyone who comes downstairs in a tanktop like this must have a sense of humor. He really is the best Daddy in the world. For Father's Day we made him a silk tie that Emma colored and I put their handprints on the back so they would always be touching Daddy's heart. He also got a camcorder, blueberry pancakes in the morning and stuffed shells for dinner. Oh and new dress shoes. I just love him so much and I am so grateful for him. I love you baby, even if you are Free and Easy...and hilarious!
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Cute Pictures

I know you all check in here for pictures of the kiddies...who cares what Linds has to say, right? I hope you enjoy. I have no idea how we were blessed with such beautiful children but were were so...ha! Enjoy!
This outfit was Nicholas' confirmation/dedication outfit! Cal is so big I couldn't get it shut in the back but doesn't he look silly?
This is my all time favorite picture! Muddy feet from making Grandpa Marc's stepping stone!
Emma going fishing...she told us this was her boat and she was out in the water going "splash splash" she kept pretending to cast and then reel the fish in...ah, I love her.
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Friday, June 20, 2008

All About Me

Okay I have seen other bloggies do this so I am going to take a shot at it; here are 100 things you didn’t know about me before. Enjoy!

1. When I was little I called Stickers by the yard, stickers by the lawn
2. I started eating sushi when I was 8
3. I liked it
4. Still do
5. Eel was and is my favorite
6. Nick introduced me to pork rinds
7. Still up in the air about those
8. The only reason Nick and I are together is because my roommate was catholic
9. I once ran over someone with a gocart
10. The ocean makes me smile
11. My high school boyfriend forced me to bungee jump
12. I secretly stalk Hello Kitty
13. Last I knew she was in Tokyo
14. I often tell Nick “I love you Aunt Polly”
15. Because Pollyanna is my favorite movie
16. I wish I had been alive in the 40s
17. Or in the Victorian Era
18. Or maybe the Edwardian
19. I collect stamps
20. And yes I do know that I am a dork
21. I quit ballet when my mom had cancer
22. I wish I hadn’t
23. I am the oldest sibling
24. I act like it too
25. Clutter causes me to have panic attacks
26. Pink is my favorite color
27. It’s the color of my kitchen
28. In our last place the pink kitchen was so bright it looked like the place was on fire from outside
29. I love goofy pens
30. I get a thrill by getting free things from the grocer with coupons
31. I have a sticker collection
32. I had braces for three years
33. I’ve never been to a Club
34. Because I am lame
35. Nick gives me butterflys in my tummy
36. Still
37. We had Emma’s name picked out since we started dating
38. I think watching sports is stupid
39. Nick thinks I am stupid for thinking watching sports is stupid
40. I am like a beautiful mind with all of my post it notes around
41. I plan what I am going to wear for the week
42. I love buying cleaning supplies
43. And office supplies
44. Christmas is my favorite time of the year
45. I love making sugar cookies
46. I don’t have a rolling pin
47. I am scared of squirrels
48. I used to have my navel pierced
49. Oh to be young again
50. I find French to be over my head
51. I like to talk about the meaning behind art
52. History is my favorite subject
53. Vietnam history to be more exact
54. I love the smell of scratch and sniff stickers
55. When I think of the fair I think of the song “Lady in Red”
56. I was engaged before Nick
57. Long story
58. I’ve always wanted to live in Manhattan
59. Now I want to live in Seattle
60. I think Hawaii is almost TOO perfect
61. I am Hawaiian
62. Nick says I act uppity sometimes
63. I’m not
64. I think I have the self confidence of a rock
65. And not of a rock star
66. or a rock like a diamond
67. Just a rock
68. When I was young, I collected unicorns
69. I dislike leftover meat
70. I also dislike when people breathe through their mouth
71. I used to be a lifeguard
72. Occasionally I will still run into people who call me Lifeguard Lindsay
73. I like chunky peanut butter
74. Mychildhood nickname was Pookie
75. I don’t like when people dress immodestly
76. I’m a recent convert on this
77. I need to go shopping
78. My closet is still full of immodest clothing
79. I have a dressing room, not a closet
80. Another reason why my husband is the best
81. My two children are my world
82. I feel like I can’t breathe when they’re not with me
83. I am a breastfeeding advocate
84. I don’t eat tuna that’s not dolphin safe
85. I don’t use laundry softener
86. My favorite restaurant is Maggiano’s
87. I miss my Indy friends
88. And our Indy apartment
89. In theory, but we couldn’t all fit now
90. I have a degree in Corporate Finance
91. I used to be in the Corporate world
92. Now I live in the real world
93. You get hit on a lot when you’re the only woman in your corporate world
94. Again, now in the real world
95. I am a genius in planning events
96. Or so I’ve been told
97. I could eat a jar of Nutella in one sitting
98. I love the Nutcracker
99. I danced with Mr. Kelly…the tap dancer
100. When I grow up I want to be a housewife and philanthropist…I think
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Posting

I have had a number of beautiful friends let me know that their comment are not coming through. I think I have fixed the problem...I would love if you commented again...I miss my comments. Sorry for the mixups!
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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Back from the Market

Here's what I bought for 49.76

So I just got back from the grocery store and again it was like pulling teeth to stay on budget! How fruustrating. I think we are going to have to up the food budget as previously suggested; I just hate the thought of having to do that though, don't you? But anyway, I was doing some blog surfing this morning and I stumbled across a woman who could be my sister, weird huh? I can't remember the blog off the top of my head but when I stumble across the name I will let you know so you can tell me if I am right about this sister thing. Anywho she was saying that as hard as staying on budget is these days, at least we are still able to provide healthy nutritious meals to our family with organic foods and wholesome products. And you know, she is right? At times it may seem as though we are scraping by, but we aren't SCRAPING by. I am not feeding Emma ramen noodles or pork rinds for dinner. We have fresh fruits and vegetables (thank you Witwers!). We sit down as a family and have dinner every night. We truly are blessed beyond measure. I especially know how blessed we are when Emma prays for the dinner (albeit sounding like the old lady at the Griswald Christmas..."I pledge allegiance to the flag".) But anyway, pictured is what I got from the store. I should tell you that anything I buy from supplemental stores (read CVS, Walgreens, Target) is not factored into my budget. Here are some of the amazing deals I got:


Juice at Walmart for 1.00 each
Mrs. Meyers countertop spray at Kroger on clearance for $2.50
Muir Glen tomatoes 1.20/can...I used my 3 $1.00 off coupons off 3 cans and got each for $.20.
Kashi Granola bars 2.67/each...I used my 2 $2.00 off coupons and got 2 for $.67 each
Honey Bunches of Oats 1.98...I used my $2.00 off coupon and got paid $.02 to buy it!
YoBaby yogurt for Emma, originally $4.09, on sale for $2.09

A lot of these deals I wasn't looking for, they found me. Another way I am shown that God is watching out for us and is providing for our every need.

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Oye

I found this on a wondeful website, http://www.livingfortodaymom.com/ I had to post this because I thought it was HILARIOUS!!! I am so doing this when we get a dog...okay not really. Well, maybe not really.
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Friday, June 13, 2008

Say Hello to my Little Friend

This is our new camera...isn't she a beaut? For those of you who were unaware our camera before this one was huge...like takes two hands to hold big. I like to compare it to Zach Morris' cell phone. Yes that big! But now we have a cute midgety camera and I love it! Our old camera was slowly dying...sometimes the shutter didn't open and it was getting harder and harder to capture the children being adorable. So we upgraded and I am happy. No longer will you say "I hate this camera!"
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Let the Screaming Commence

Things here in Beantown are going pretty well. Nick is adorable, Emma is cantankerous, and Calvin is hilarious. So everyone seems to be occupied with being fun and happy right now. Emma is in her terrible two’s and she has such anger issues. She reminds me so much of myself that it is kind of ridiculous. She has taken to yelling when she doesn’t like something. For example, naptime. Emma used to take her nap on the sofa. It involved a long process of me having to prepare her a cup of milk and then laying down with her until she fell asleep. Then I would have to get Calvin and go upstairs and couldn’t come back down for fear of waking her. Plus if Calvin cried at all, even a tiny bit, during her falling asleep, she wouldn’t fall asleep. I decided that it was just ridiculous to jump through the hoops anymore…especially since I found her one day watching reruns of “I love Lucy”…the squirt wasn’t even napping she was just making us suffer upstairs so she could have some alone time with the plasma. So we have taken to napping in our crib for nap time. She has been napping in her crib for a week now and everyday I put her in her crib with a cup of water and some books and her stuffed animals and explain to her that she doesn’t have to sleep but she needs to relax and can read books or play. And every day she cries and screams and then one by one I hear her throw her books out of her bed. And then her cup. And she screams “I will not take a nap in my bed.” Over and over and over. How fun. Last night while we were driving she was screaming at Nicholas for driving “Daddy not drive, Emma drive!” Yes okay, lets pull over and the two of you can trade places. I was shopping with her for Father’s Day and I kept saying I was going to tickle her; so she’s screaming “I will not be tickled!” So here’s my question…am I raising a spoiled bratty little girl or is this normal? Its hard to find some middle ground here. I don’t want to just let the screaming and demanding go unpunished but I also don’t want her to feel as though I am beating her all of the time. Do you know what I mean? Please, someone give me some helpful insight into this.
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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

I've Got the Grocery Shopping Blues!

Has anyone else noticed how Grocery prices are stifling everyone? I went shopping last night and it was just gut wrenching! I was also just reading today that they are expected to rise even more! What’s a girl on a budget to do? Errr! I try to spend just $50.00 a week on groceries but lately it has been difficult indeed. One of Nick’s best friends Tony couldn’t believe that I only spend that. He said “but you guys make good food.” Yes we do, thank you! What has everyone else been doing to stay on track? I clip coupons, of course! But I also have begun shopping more creatively…cleaning supplies and personal care products will be bought at CVS with ECB and I have also been looking at Aldi. I must also mention that one of our saving graces is not getting everything at the supermarket: we get our fruits and veggies through an organic co-op with Nick's mom (thank you thank you!) and she also picks us up organic amish eggs. Now I should also make the disclaimer here that we do not eat frozen boxed meal crap. I do actually cook for my family on a nightly basis. Here is what the menu looks like this week:

Tuesday: Smoked Ham and Asparagus on Toast
Wednesday: Roasted Chicken with Rice and Corn on the Cob
Thursday: Stuffed Shells and Garlic Bread
Friday: Chicken Piccata
Saturday: breakfast blueberry pancakes; lunch BLT’s; Dinner: Stuffed Chicken Breasts
Sunday: Lunch: Corned Beef Sandwiches with Horseradish; Dinner: Leftovers
Monday: Fritatta

As you can see we eat nice well balanced meals. Emma loves avocado so she has that with dinner, too. Does anyone have any suggestions? Anything to add?
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Sunday, June 8, 2008

Adios Amiga!

Friday evening we went over to my Grandma Jean's house to say good bye to my Aunt Jan. She is on her way home to Maryland and I miss her so much. I am sure she is getting caught up with all of this blogging I have been doing. Thought I would post some pictures from our fun times together. I love that the women posted in the picture are the shopping buddies. We all have fun together. I love that we span four generations...you can have fun no matter how old you are! I am going to miss you Aunt Jan! Have fun, live life to its fullest in Maryland, I think of you multiple times each day and I can't wait to see you soon!
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Thursday, June 5, 2008

Jon and Kate are Geniuses!

Last night I watched Jon and Kate plus 8. Usually watching that show helps me to feel as though my life is so calm compared to them. This episode however caused me to feel that I have things more jumbled up than they do. The episode was discussing parenting and discipline techniques. They talked about the various ways they punish the kids and how they need to fine tune their ways for each individual child. At the end Kate said that all you can do is love them and just try to let them know that you love them. And how true is that? I think that I often times get so wrapped up in the act of having kids and raising kids that I forget what the point is. I am overly micro-organizing and under macro-organizing as we would have concluded in the corporate world. I get so wrapped up in play dates and cooking organic foods, and making sure Calvin is visually stimulated enough, and making sure we read to Emma enough, and on and on and on, that I lose sight of the big picture…all of these things are done because I love my kids. And yes I know that I do these things because I love my kids. We have playdates so Emma won’t be socially challenged and will learn how to share; I feed the kids organic foods so they aren’t consuming high fructose corn syrup, red dye 40, and pesticides; I stimulate Calvin so he will be a genius; I read to Emma so she will have a love for books. I know that all of these things I do out of love, but how often do I stop taking myself so seriously and just love my kids?…not very often it seems. Jon and Kate have this so simplified and I need to take their lead it seems!
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Monday, June 2, 2008

Kelsey Graduated!

Yesterday my baby sister Kelsey graduated from High School! Yeah Kelsey! So we spent yesterday afternoon at commencement which was well, hot. Thought I would post some pictures from the day! Enjoy!
Here are Emma and Calvin right before we left for the Joyce. Emma decided to be a bull...
Then she decided that Calvin should be a bull too!
The proud graduate with her nephew. My baby sis with our baby.

Sisters (and all my fab kids (I say ALL like I am herding them around or something!))
Me with my sis', kids, and Gram. I don't know what I was doing but doesn't it look like I should be saying "holla' back yo, yoo, yoo"?
Emma and Kelsey...so cute!
This is what Emma did during the commencement ceremony! It looks like she is reaching for the football which is just precious...high aspirations.



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