Try It Tuesday

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Huff the Hubs has been doing this program called The Ketogenic Diet, so I’ve been trying to find ways to help him have low-carb dinners (homeboy is on his own at lunch) without putting more work on myself. One of our menu staples is spaghetti–its easy, its cheap, there are easy ways to make it healthy, and–BONUS–my kids will eat it (translation: I only have to cook ONE meal). But I needed to be able to make it low-carb for the hubs. I’ve used a spaghetti squash before but with two kids, its too much work. Thankfully, Target had my back! The kids and I were doing our weekly Target run and I spied this:

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A veggie that’s already spiralized, organic, and it only takes 3-4 minutes to cook? YES, PLEASE!

All I did was toss the entire container into a skillet with a teensy bit of EVOO and a dash of salt and pepper and stirred every now and then for 3-4 minutes. BAM. Done.

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I added a little to my whole wheat noodles because I was nervous about how it would taste…

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It was really good! I actually liked it a bit better than the whole wheat noodles! And check out the nutrition facts:

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You could eat the entire box of zucchini spirals and still eat three times FEWER calories than ONE serving of whole wheat noodles! Plus, you get all the health benefits from the zucchini!

 

Have you ever tried these? What did you think? Share in the comments below!

Mommy Monday

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If you haven’t been on Facebook, Twitter, the Internet, to the grocery store, or watched the news lately then you probably haven’t heard that there was a total solar eclipse today. This is quite a big deal as another total solar eclipse will not happen again for another seven years.

While I think its cool in a, “Hey, there’s a solar eclipse. Neat.” sort of way, I’m not too hyped about it. There are some things, however, that feel like they happen every seven years–because they’re so rare–that I do get excited about. For example…

My family all eating the same meal, without a fight.

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Normally, I make Huff the Hubs and I something and then the kids get something else. Because I know that they will throw a big ole hissy fit about eating salmon or some kind of chicken that isn’t golden brown and dinosaur-shaped. But, there are rare occurrences when I say, “Too bad, so sad,” and errybody has to eat what I cooked for the grownups and it actually goes well!

All the laundry baskets empty AT THE SAME TIME. 

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Most days I get about 1-2 loads of laundry done and then they sit in baskets until laundry overflows in said baskets and I’m up folding clothes until midnight. But, once in a blue moon, I get laundry washed, dried, folded, AND put away ALL in the same day. Its glorious.

My children sleeping in past 7:00 a.m.

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No matter what time my kids go to bed, they are almost always up right at the stroke of 7:00 a.m. They could’ve gone without a nap the day before and didn’t fall asleep until 10, but rest assured, they’ll be saying, “Mommmmmmaaaaa!” before I can hit snooze. There are some times, though, that they sleep until 8:00 and I’m actually able to do stuff. Like, drink coffee before it gets cold and actually eat a healthy breakfast.

Wearing a white shirt the entire day without spilling something/my kids rubbing food on it.  

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I don’t buy white clothes. Not only because my kids can attract any mess within a 1-mile radius, but also because my nickname is “Messy Jessie”. So any time I can wear a white shirt without dropping a drink or a meal on it, I feel pretty accomplished.

Only having to ask Huff the Hubs once to take out the trash. 

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Calm down, I’m not going to get into a husband-bashing debate. But come on, all you wives out there know what I’m talking about. You’ll ask your hubby to take out the trash after dinner. And then again after the kids’ baths. And then again after you’ve tucked them in bed. And then you’re both laying in bed and you say, “Honey, did you take out the trash?” So when it only takes ONE TIME to ask and it gets accomplished, its basically the same feeling you get when you find $20 on the street.

Eating a warm meal. 

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You know that scene in A Christmas Story when the mom sits down to eat but can’t even take one freaking bite because her family keeps asking her to get them stuff? Yeah, its funny because its true.

Going to the grocery store without enduring any meltdowns. 

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“We just need a few things. We won’t be long.” HAHAHAHAHAHA! Famous last words. The grocery store and I are not on the same page when I bring the kids along. Why can’t they have a drive-thru?! Why must they put all the candy by the registers?! Its like they WANT you to fail. Sigh. So whenever I can go through the store quickly and without a major meltdown, I feel like a total bad-a!

 

What about you? What “rare occurrences” would you add to the list? Share in the comments below!

 

 

 

Her’s Day Thursday

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Last Thursday, my family and I were hit by a devastating loss. Our sweet little miniature pinscher, Pinny Lane, passed away.

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We knew it was coming. She was plagued with health problems: diabetes, cataracts/eyesight loss, hearing loss, pancreatic tumors, and kidney problems. Even though we knew it was coming it was still tough.

Last Monday I took her to the vet and she said that even though it hurt her heart to say it, she believed euthanization was necessary. Very reluctantly, and with heavy hearts, we made the appointment for last Thursday at 4:30.

The kids and I had somewhere to be at 9:30 that morning. On our way, I decided to stop at my sister’s house to check on Pinny. When I walked inside, the house was silent. There was no patter of little paws coming to greet me. I turned from the kitchen into the living room and saw her laying on her pillow, with her favorite pink blanket over her. At first, I thought she was sleeping.

I called out her name, but she didn’t move. I gently shook her pillow. When she didn’t stir, I knelt down, searching her chest to see if it rose and fell. It didn’t. I reached out and touched her–she was gone.

As I went back to the car and my kids, I started thinking about that sweet little pup and everything she meant to my family…

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Pinny was given to me by an ex-boyfriend while we were still together back in 2004. At the time, she stayed at his house. This was fine with my family–they didn’t get along with the guy and certainly didn’t want a dog at their house that reminded them of him. The relationship was…awful. And that’s being nice.

There was emotional/mental abuse, manipulation, and controlling behavior. When I finally broke up with him, I decided that I was taking Pinny with me. She was mine, after all, and I wanted to be the one to care for her.

She came home with me and my dad set up a little fenced in area for her in the backyard. Soon after, my grandpa built her a dog house. I always thought it was so cute the way she’d fluff her blankets to cover the hole of her little house. Eventually, when the weather changed, Pinny became an inside dog.

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There was a point that my family was still a little reluctant to take her in. But soon after, Pinny got sick–I still don’t really remembered what happened. What I do remember is my mom and sister crying on the back porch and praying over that little black and brown dog. She quickly solidified her place as a member of the family after that!

We moved to a new house on the other side of town a few months later and Pinny Lane slept with me in my bed. When Huff the Hubs and I got married in 2011, neither one of us wanted to keep her cooped up in a tiny apartment, so she went to live with my sister, Bridget. And that’s where Pinny has been ever since.

Pinny has been such a great companion to Bridget. Bridget spoiled her rotten and loved her deeply. There were so many times I’d see her wrap that sweet dog in a blanket and hold her like a baby. But that’s what she was–Bridget’s baby.

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Pinny has held such a huge part of our hearts for so long and means so much to my family. We credit her with bringing my family back together again after I was in such a bad relationship that fractured our family dynamic (it’s no wonder the name Penny means “weaver”!).

She was an enormous blessing and will be forever missed.

 

 

Try It Tuesday

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Soooo… yeah. I don’t have a try it for today. Well, technically I do. But its one of those things that I have to wait a few weeks to see if anything comes of it, so yeah. Totally dropped the ball this week.

But, I do have a hilarious video from the folks at FBE! Just TRY not to sing along during this video! (See what I did there?)

How did you do?

Not gonna lie, I did terrible.

Mommy Monday

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Before I became a parent, I would sometimes get a little annoyed with people that posted every ten minutes on Facebook about something their kid did/said/pooped or about the struggles of being a parent. Now, however? I totally get it.

I know some people get irritated with (mostly) SAHMs posts about their kids. I mean, there’s even blogs about it. But imma let you in on a few reasons why SAHMs, such as myself, tend to post so much in a day.

 

1. We’re bored. 

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Don’t get me wrong, I love my kids. But you can only dress and re-dress a Barbie and listen to another hour-long Minecraft monologue before you crack. Sometimes you just need to zone out and tweet a little something to break up the monotony.

 

2. We want to feel connected to the outside world. 

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There are many days that the kids and I don’t leave the house. Sometimes its because there’s just so much to do around here or because I don’t feel like taking the kids to the store with me. Either way, if you go two or three days without stepping foot outside, you start to get a little cabin fever. Its like when Netflix asks you if you’re still there after binge-watching Gilmore Girls for three hours–we want people to know we’re still around!

 

3. If we don’t post a picture of our kid or tweet a funny quote they said, we will probably forget. (And trust me, we want that ish on our #Timehop next year!) 

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At the beginning of the year, I saw an awesome commercial for this app called Chatbooks. It basically takes all the pictures you post on social media and makes it into a scrapbook FOR you! They automatically send once the book is full, and its only $8! Its awesome for the time-crunched Momma that wants to make sure she captures everything. Drawback? Your friends have to put up with your constant picture posting (#sorrynotsorry).

 

4. We need to know we’re not alone. 

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This parenting gig is tough. And honestly, nine times out of ten when we post something, we want to hear that we’re not the only ones going through this season of constant diaper changes, potty accidents, and tantrums over the wrong color sippy cup.

 

5. Sometimes, our kids do genuine adorable things and we want to share their adorableness with everyone. 

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Everyone thinks their kids are the cutest and we just want other people to share in an “Awwwww!”-worthy gush with us. So go on, throw ’em bone. Give ’em that “like”.

 

But I get it, sometimes its eye-roll inducing when you see that same mom with yet another status update about the “very large poop that could rival a grown man’s” or how they’re “constantly cleaning boogers off the wall” or “drowning in a sea of diapers”.

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Maybe this will help you understand us a little better. Or, ya know, just click the “unfollow” button. Whatevs.

Try It Tuesday

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A few weeks ago, I was perusing Amazon when I came across this little contraption:

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No, not the toddler. The blue thing! Its called: The Noggle. Its an attachment you hook to your A/C vent so your rear-facing kiddo can get cold air in the hot car. This intrigued me because I’m constantly concerned that Huff the Babe is burning up in the backseat (which is why I have the A/C turned down to 68* in the car, much to Huff the Tot’s disappointment). I checked the price: $45.99!

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SAY WHAAAAAAAAT?! Nah. I know I could do this for a lot cheaper. I checked Pinterest for some tutorials, but I couldn’t really find any. So, I decided to just wing it and do my own thing.

Here’s what I used:

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~foil duct

~glue gun

~silicone sink strainer (I found some at Dollar Tree!)

~Velcro adhesive stickers

~felt

~fabric

 

My idea (well, actually my dad’s idea) was to put the silicone sink drainer in the hose, put felt around the outside, and attach the Velcro adhesives to the vent so the vent would stick.

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Then, I put a funnel at the other end (AKA, the end that Huff the Babe would have). I put the funnel there because I didn’t want Huff the Babe to put his hands down the tube.

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It looked REALLY janky. I couldn’t deal. So I covered it with some Star Wars fabric I had lying around.

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Much better.

Then, Huff the Hubs and I tried it out.

Yeah. Big. Fat. FAILURE.

The air didn’t really come out the other end (probably because of the funnel) and I really didn’t want to take it out because I knew HtB, AKA “The Destroyer”, would rip through the tubing. (Seriously, this kid has some Hulk strength). So sadly, this was a bust.

BUT, at least I didn’t spend $45.99! I only spent $16! And I can still use the stuff. I’ll probably reuse the fabric and the tubing can be used for a Tin Man costume or robot costume later. So all is not lost!

Have you ever tried The Noggle (or something similar)? What did you think? Share in the comments below!

Mommy Monday

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Some days, I feel like all I do is clean.

Clean up dishes from breakfast.

Clean off my kids.

Clean the floor.

Clean the bathroom.

Clean the floor again because someone gave the baby crackers.

Clean up from lunch.

And on, and on, and on, and on…

So this video–from the hilarious duo I Mom So Hard–was totally relatable and made me laugh so hard I almost woke my napping kids (which, as we know, is a fate worse than death).

Mommas, put the broom (or Clorox wipe or Shout) down and take a minute to giggle along with me!