trying to achieve perfection with less than stellar results

Monday, January 31, 2011

Menu Plan Monday ~ January 31, 2011

Wooohooo! It's Monday again. Time for our weekly menu plan. I'm hooked up with who hosts Menu Plan Monday every week. Head over there and look at all the other plans going on!

Monday: Pizza (frozen :()

Tuesday: Turkey, mashed potatoes, and green beans. And I'm making an apple crisp for dessert.
Wednesday: Tacos

Thursday: Penne and meatballs with garlic bread. Also a peach crumble for dessert.

Friday: Chicken, baked potatoes, and corn

Saturday: Beef stroganoff with noodles and broccoli. I'm also making a vanilla pudding pie with chocolate icing and animal cracker crust.

Sunday: Turkey and rice soup. Check back later for the recipe

What's on your menu??

Friday, January 28, 2011

Recipe Friday

I think I'll post some recipes every Friday so I can look back and find ones that I want to try.

I made this chili one day last week and it was pretty yummy. Jerry would have like it to have a little more kick but it was great for the kids and I. It's from a cooking segment on GMA.

Chicken Enchilada Chili

1 1/2 cups prepared enchilada sauce
2 (14.5-ounce) cans tomatoes with seasoning
2 (15-ounce) cans pinto or kidney beans with juice (or 1 cup dry pinto beans, soaked overnight)
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 onion, diced, or 1 tablespoon dried minced onion flakes
1 to 2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 1/2 pounds chicken (thighs, legs, breasts—your choice)
shredded cheddar cheese and sour cream for serving (optional)

Cooking Directions
Use a 6-quart slow cooker. Pour the enchilada sauce and tomatoes into the bottom of the removable stoneware insert. Add the beans, celery, onion, and spices, and stir to combine. Place the chicken on top. Cover and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours, or until the flavors have combined. If you are using dry beans, you may need to cook longer to fully soften the beans. If your chicken has bones, fish the bones out before serving. Serve with shredded cheddar cheese and a dollop of sour cream, if desired.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Trying to Defeat the Crazy

I hesitate to share any of this..... What will people think? Are you going to judge me? Use this against me? But I need to get it out there. How I feel. What I'm worried about. My "issues".

Mental issues run in my family. There is a history of depression, ADD, ADHD, bi-polar disorder, and anxiety disorders. The majority of these in just myself. And I appear to have passed some on to my sons.

Andrew has ADD. We put him on a non-stimulant medication for a while in first grade but his teacher didn't think it was doing what it should have for him. As we were going into the summer I decided not to leave him on it. If we needed to I would put him back on it at the beginning of the school year. Second grade went without a hitch until late March. At that point I decided we weren't putting him on meds for the last 2 months of school - that was ridiculous. Third grade has been going well. We have struggled some in math but I attribute that more to comprehension then the ADD. It just takes us extra time to review the math "principles" but he gets it in the end.

Nathan has not been so easy to "control". We are now taking him to a neurological psychiatrist to get his little brain scanned. It will tell us what is actually the case. I'm nervous. The power of the internet is not good for parents. I have googled so much, including Autism. What if that's where he's at? What will that mean for his life? What will that mean for my life? By no means do I think he is extreme but maybe on the spectrum. Or it could be ADD; or bi-polar disorder; or possibly something that has not even entered my thoughts.

I have resisted the medication for him because I myself have been on and off medication starting at age 5. I don't like it. I hate that it changes who I am. I don't want it to change Nathan. Medication will change his mood swings and the anger issues, which is good. But is it going to change his loving side too? Will it make him stop crawling up in my lap just to cuddle? Will it make him stop playing his DS to give me a hug and say I love you? I have tried to help him with his diet and added structure here at home. It just is not enough. I have been defeated. Following his appointment in 2 weeks he will end upon medication.

It makes me sad that Nathan will forever be changed.

And if Nathan is going to be shoved on medication then it is only fair that I get back on mine. Even if it changes me.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Menu Plan Monday - January 24, 2011


It's that time again! Menu Plan Monday over at I'm An Organizing Junkie. You should hop over there and check out all the other ladies that want to share their menus with you!
Hope you all have a fabulous week and are keeping warm!
Monday: Sweet & Sour Chicken with brown rice

Tuesday: Meatballs with gravy and mashed potatoes

Wednesday: Cheddar Burgers with sweet potato fries & salad

Thursday: Artichoke Chicken (crockpot) with penne & corn

Friday: Tomato soup with Grilled cheese

Saturday: Tacos
Sunday: Ham with baked potatoes and green beans
What are you eating this week?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Soft Heart For Big Baby

Disclaimer: This contains some spoilers!

Yesterday the kids and I watched Toy Story 3. It was a great way to wrap up the series.

The overall message was different for me as a mother than it was for my kids. It made me think how in 10 years Andrew will be going off to college. Or at the very least leaving this home for a "real life". It made me sad. The movie made me think of how we have been collecting these toys since each one of them was born and thrown away or donated so many toys. There will come a day when they won't look twice at them. Pretty soon their rooms will be covered in posters of what I will only be able to say at that point is "really, boys?? ugh". For the boys I am sure it will be of girls in bikinis or the Sports Illustrated cover. For Annabelle I can only hope it's Marky Mark in his Calvin Kleins.

Andrew and Annabelle could have cared less about the "story". Nathan on the other hand..... Has a soft heart for Big Baby.

After Lots-O-Hugs Bear, Big Baby and the clown were lost by their owner Daisy, LotsO turned evil and started his dictatorship. Toward the end of the movie LotsO ripped the "My Heart Belongs to Daisy" necklace off Big Baby's neck and smashed it. Telling Big Baby Daisy never loved him and replaced him. Blah blah blah about the story.... It all turned out well in the end. Ken & Barbie rule Sunnyside Daycare and Barbie takes care of Big Baby.

Everything was fine until Nathan was done brushing his teeth and I was tucking him into bed. He threw himself on the bed and started sobbing. Like whole body shaking, sobbing. After a few minutes of trying to figure out what was wrong it's cause LotsO broke Big Baby's necklace and Big Baby was crying. Nathan feels so sad for Big Baby. I explained everything was okay. Barbie takes care of Big Baby now. LotsO isn't a nice bear and is now stuck on the front of a dump truck. He just can't take it. He cried for half an hour.

It made me smile on the inside. My rough and tumble big boy has such a soft heart for those who can't do for themselves. He actually cares about others. And for anyone that knows him knows that he isn't always warm and fuzzy. And it gives me hope that I am not completely failing at raising a good hearted child.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Menu Plan Monday - January 17

It's that time again! We have actually been doing really well sticking to our menu plan. And I am loving it!

Monday: Chicken Enchilada Chili (crockpot) (from GMA)

Tuesday: Tamales & Spanish Rice (tamale recipe to come)

Wednesday: Ham & mac-n-cheese & broccoli

Thursday: Cheddar Burgers & Salad (recipe to come)

Friday: Pizza

Saturday: Tortellini & pasta sauce & garlic bread

Sunday: Chicken Noodle Soup & corn muffins

I am linking up with who hosts Menu Plan Monday every Monday. Go check her out and see all the other ladies that plan too!

What's on your menu this week??

Thursday, January 13, 2011

So much has happened.......

The last couple of weeks that I haven't shared! OMG; Where to begin.....

My brother deployed with his unit on January 5. He is currently in Okinawa, Japan. At the end of the month they will board the ship and come into port in numerous locations. I downloaded Skype so we are able to talk to him still. Which is completely awesome. Andrew loves being able to talk to him. As do the rest of us. I mean, we know he's good where he is; but there's just something about being able to hear his voice. It's great.

Jerry has officially won the trip to Puerto Rico. We will be going sometime in April. He is super excited about it. I on the other hand, am somewhat nervous. That is far away from the kids for such a long time. They will be fine I know but, ya know, I won't be there if they need me.

It has been snowing off and on here. We don't have nearly as much as they do out East. Just a couple of inches. And as I type this the big, fat, puffy snowflakes are flying.

Andrew has joined an afterschool club. It's about sports. Teaching them what? I'm not so sure. We just blindly signed him up cause it said sports. Yay for involved parenting! lol

Nathan had a rough couple of days starting back to school but things are turning around now. He's a good boy when he wants to be.

Annabelle is starting to repeat more of the things we are saying. And she understands the things we tell her. She is very good about picking up her toys when we tell her.

I am continuously trying to find the motivation to keep the house picked up. After the holidays everything is just so anticlimactic. Yeah, I'm pretty sure I spelled that wrong but who cares. I have been trying to find new recipes to feed the family. Some are hits, some are misses. The hits, I plan to share here.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Menu Plan Monday

My Menu Plan posts have been sporatic at best. Things fell through a lot last week so we have a bunch of carry-over dinners.

I am linking up with Menu Plan Monday over at orgjunkie. You should hop over there and look at the other menu plans that other ladies have prepared. And add your own if you are so inclined :)

Breakfasts will consist of oatmeal, coco wheats, toast, eggs, and I'll prolly make the family some biscuits and gravy

Lunch: The kids are at school. The baby and I will prolly eat sandwiches or dinner leftovers

Dinner: Monday - frozen pizza for the husband and kids. I have a PTO meeting tonight and will prolly grab some snacky something when I get home.

Tuesday - Grilled Shrimp & peppers fajitas with Spanish Rice

Wednesday - Country Style Pork Ribs (crockpot; recipe to follow) with cauliflower

Thursday - Artichoke Chicken (crockpot; recipe to follow) with boiled potatoes and green beans

Friday - Meatballs with gravy & broccoli

Saturday - Steak Stir Fry

Sunday - Baked ham, mashed potatoes, cheesy green beans

What are you eating this week?

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Mark Twain ~ It's a Word Thang

Recently I became embroiled into a debate on Facebook about changing the language in Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. It quickly escalated from talk about changing a piece of history to who should be allowed to use the N word.


So, it started out with A putting her status that she didn't think the language in Huck Finn should not be changed because it is a part of history and that's how things were then. A friend of her's, V, said that A was ignorant, said the F word a couple of times and that Huck Finn should be changed because it is offensive and repressive to black people. J asked her if rap music should be changed then? V said rappers put an "a" at the end of it so it's okay; it's not the same. I said then I think nonwhite people should not be allowed to say cracker or cracka. Only white people are allowed. V continued to talk about ignorant people and us having our GED's. All the while spelling incorrectly. I pointed this out. Telling her her post may have delivered more of the sass she was going for if she knew how to spell correctly or at the very least double checked her work. She said she was typing on a Blackberry so that makes incorrect spelling okay.

She continuously missed the point. We all agreed with her that the N word is offensive to everyone and should not be used by anyone. But we don't think that changing every book in history is appropriate.

So, I open this up to you. What is your stance on changing the Mark Twain books? Not your stance on using the N word. We all agree that noone should use it.