The Peach Fiasco

Part of me is excited to start giving my son solid foods (he'll be six months old on Tuesday) and the other part of me hesitates because it means a lot more food prep, a lot more laundry, and a lot more time in general. Up until now, feeding him has been so easy and convenient. No warming up bottles, no pureeing vegetables, no bibs, not post-lunch bath, no nothing!

Freebie Tomorrow!

I just want to give you all a heads up that I am doing a giveaway (my first) tomorrow! I will be giving away three free canisters of Wet Ones to three very lucky readers. More details tomorrow. Spread the word!


Amazing Eggs

The average cost of a dozen eggs this year is about $2.89. I can make four huge omelets (three eggs each) with a carton of eggs, meaning each one costs me about 80 cents if you account for a little shredded cheese and seasonings. That's cheap!


Anything with Buttons

When he couldn't figure out how to order pizza, he decided to eat the phone instead.



So you want to stay home with your kids, but you can't afford it? I can totally sympathize. Our journey has been a difficult one, and making it work is a continuous battle. Despite the stress of learning how to live on a single income, I would not return to work for anything. I love being a full time mom.

The Secret to LIKING Your Husband (Again)

Ladies, if you've ever gritted your teeth in frustration and felt yourself growing increasingly irritated with your husband, whether it's a bad habit, annoying behavior or a repeated "mistake," I have the answer that will change your marriage. And no... I'm not going to call your husband and tell him to get his act together! I don't have two tickets to Dr. Phil to give away. I'm not even going to teach you how to change him.


Stuffed Croissants: Pizza Style!

I've been on a stuffed-anything kick lately. It all started with the feta, mozzarella, turkey and spinach Stromboli that I made with my mom a few weeks ago. We used croissants instead of pizza dough and dipped them in warm marinara sauce.

A few days later, I made a breakfast variation of stuffed croissants, using cheddar, sausage and egg. I glazed them with maple syrup right out of the oven. They were heavenly!

Then I made pizza croissants, as shown above. (Tonight I made homemade hot pockets with mixed veggies and cheddar.)

I'm going to tell you how I made the pizza croissants, since they turned out pretty good. You can make these with pizza dough, but since I love croissants (just ask my sister), I love this version even more.

  1. Buy the ready-to-bake croissant dough in the canister to make things quick. 
  2. Layer with mozzarella and your favorite pizza toppings (sans the sauce) and roll them up. 
  3. Bake according to the package directions, adding a few minutes for the stuffing. 
  4. Allow them to sit for a couple minutes once you remove them from the oven and serve with warm marinara sauce

They are delectable and fast!

Quick Clean-Up Tip: As you can see from my photo, I always line my cookie sheets with aluminum foil to save myself from having to wash the pans every time I use them. As long as nothing runs off the side of the foil, all I have to do is crumple the foil and toss. Usually the pan is clean and ready for the next use!

I'm linking this recipe to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday


Cupid (Without the Wings)

I took Micah's five-month portraits yesterday morning in our living room. The first hour of the day is great for lighting... and a happy baby! Someday, when he's a senior, I'll make sure this gets in the yearbook.

Thoughts on Hard Work

"Time stays long enough for anyone who will use it." -- Leonardo Da Vinci

"She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness." -- Proverbs 31:27

Out With the Old

I've never been very motivated when it comes to housework. I'm not talking about just cleaning, but all things pertaining to maintaining a household: paying bills, organizing, cooking, shopping (groceries), yard work, etc. When I got married and got my own place for the first time, I had to pick up the slack and take some initiative in the home department, otherwise there wasn't going to be anything to eat or wear. I wasn't very successful; many times the sink was overflowing with dishes and Eric had to throw shirt in the dryer to freshen it up before work. Those weren't exactly my glory days as a wife, or even as a human being.


Roll Over, Micah!

He is SO CLOSE to rolling all over the house. I watch these attempts with such anticipation and excitement, I feel like I am watching football. Will he make it? Almost! Almost! Awww. Not quite. The funny part is, I know he can do it because he rolled over when I wasn't looking yesterday. I laid him on his back, turned around, and when I looked back he was on his belly. This afternoon he rolled onto his back from his tummy! He didn't just roll: he pulled his legs up underneath him and pushed his butt up in the air like he was doing "down dog" with his face planted on the floor. Then he pushed with his left foot and flipped over onto his back. I was impressed. Watch Micah's acrobatics (and fascination with his new "Cars" book) after the jump.


We Are Not Immune

This past week was an adventure, to say the least. We're pretty sure my husband contracted the swine flu (don't worry, he's recovered now.) When he went to the doctor they gave him a face mask, told him to stay home and said there was basically nothing else they could do for him. They didn't even give him a blood test to confirm because so many people were coming into the clinic with the same symptoms.

My baby seemed to have a cold for a day or two. I was worried he had caught something from Eric, but all he had was a clear runny nose. It disappeared and he never seemed to notice. He was still as playful and happy as ever!

I came down with something, but I'm not sure if it's a milder version of what Eric got or something completely different. Needless to say, we've been going through antibacterial stuff like crazy and on Sunday afternoon we disinfected the entire house. I am beginning to feel better. Mostly I'm just exhausted considering our dear little one woke up every hour, on the hour, last night. Not sure what THAT was all about, but considering he has been asleep now for three hours, I'm assuming it's not going to be a repeat night tonight.

The moral of the story is... the swine flu is not as sensational as I suspected; a lot of people are getting it. But, it's also not as bad as the media would like you to think. As the doctor told Eric, for most people, it's a mild illness.


The Power of Prayer

Tonight I am reminded of the incredible power of prayer. As I cried out to the Lord yesterday morning for help, I had no idea that so many things would begin to happen over the past 48 hours. Our life, like an episode of Grey's Anatomy, has had numerous sub-plots unfolding and intertwining over the past few years, building in intensity and drama, and reaching a point over the past few weeks that I felt it was all going to unravel at once. I was afraid to ask for it to all go away, as though it were too much to ask of God, who had already blessed us with so much. Who am I kidding? Who am I to stuff such a powerful and loving God into my small box, labeled "expectations." But at my breaking point, with solutions so far out of reach that I could almost laugh at the thought of trying to fix this on my own, I finally said it....

God, I'm tired of praying small prayers. This is a big one.....

And I won't go into detail about what I asked for, because you are the internet and this is much too private for you to hear, but suffice it to say that I was not only bold, but specific. I also confessed a lot of things that might have been preventing an answer (pride, lack of faith, etc.) I was also very confident that God would do something because he doesn't throw you into these situations unless he has a great plan to get you out of them (all for His Glory, of course.)

Boy, it does appear that he has a FANTASTIC plan to get us out of these messes. So for the past 48 hours I have watched in amazement as things have been HAPPENING. Left and right, things appear to be turning around and it reaffirms that I am not serving a powerless God or an unloving or uncaring God. They may not be changing the way I planned, but God's ways are always better than mine.

How fitting that the daily verse in my inbox this morning would read:

Deuteronomy 31:8--"The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." (NIV)


The First of Many

We found the cutest park near our neighborhood. With brand new equipment and plenty of space to play, I foresee many trips there in the future. Micah was mostly interested in grabbing at the various surfaces. He didn't think much of the swings or slides. We'll be back next summer, for sure. By then we won't be able to get him off the swing or coax him from the slide. Playgrounds are just too much fun! I can't wait!


How To Get a Free Bouquet

Step 1: Shed those PJ's and pull on some neighborhood worthy pants. Put some warm clothes on that baby. Grab the stroller, a pair of sharp wire cutters, a vase filled with water, and a pair of garden gloves.

Step 2: Grab your keys and head outside. Breathe in the crisp morning air. Wonder what the crew is doing to the house across the street. Put the pacifier back in your baby's mouth and realize the sun is in his eyes. Put the shade down on the stroller.

Step 3: Keep walking until you reach the outer corners of your subdivision where neither mower nor backhoe have crawled. Scan the field for your favorite colors.

Step 4: Cut a variety of wild flowers, interesting twigs and grasses with your wire cutters. Wear your garden gloves to protect your hands from prickles. Fill up your vase. Worry about arrangement later.

Step 5: Head back to the house. Realize the crew is resealing the driveway to make the unsold house look newer. Wonder if the housing market is ever going to turn around in your area. Wonder if you're unknowingly bringing pests into your home.

Step 6: Unload the baby, the vase, your unsightly "mom" sweatshirt and the garden gloves. Arrange the wildflowers while your baby stares. Top off the vase with water, hoping they will not wilt by tomorrow. Take a few photos since you know they will be wilted by tomorrow. Find a sneaky little lady bug in your bouquet. Decide he's harmless and spare his life.

Step 7: Thank the Lord for gorgeous flowers to brighten your home and your day...


We Had No Idea

In May of 2004, Eric and I spent a week walking the same beaches, eating in the same mess hall, listening to the same speakers, hanging out with the same people (specifically my best friends from college), and frequently being photographed by the same girl (Jenny, who took the photos below). We only met once: a group of us gathered one evening in the mess hall, crowded around the coffee station, mixing hot chocolate with raspberry coffee creamer. The kitchen was dimly lit and shadows were cast across his features. I didn't even recognize him as the same guy later in the week when a friend pointed him out. I absolutely had no idea I had met my husband... 500 miles away from home... and we grew up 35 minutes apart on either side of the state line.

Hundreds of college students were gathered at Cedar Campus that week. In a sea of denim and sweatshirts, I stuck out wearing a pair of bright yellow pants with a Wisconsin Dells logo plastered across the butt. The yellow pants, the freckles, the everything else... it left a lasting impression on Eric. Me? I didn't give him a second thought. I wish I could go back... it would have been a fun week knowing what I know now.

Fast forward to the year's end. Clicked on his screen name in my friend's buddy list just for fun, and I found myself talking to the most awesome person on the planet. Loved what he had to say. Loved the way he made me laugh. Had no idea who he was. He knew exactly who I was. He had been reading my blog on and off the whole summer. He was interested in me. A few hours into the conversation, my friend and I pulled up pictures from the conference and I realized that this screen name had a face... and his face was fine.

Five years later, I look back at these pictures and laugh at how I could spend a whole week crossing paths with my future husband and not even realize it. I have so many pictures of him from that week because he hung out with my friends the entire time. How come I didn't notice him? Why wasn't there this big arrow pointing at his head, saying "this is the one, dummy, stop flirting with that other guy and pay attention to this one!" What was wrong with May? Why did I have to wait until January 7th to have dinner with the man who would hold my heart forever? Why did I date that other guy in the meantime? What was the purpose?

I may not know the answers to any of these questions, but it doesn't matter. Tonight we took our son to the park for the first time, we tag teamed dinner, we managed to get the little guy to bed by 7 and spent the next hour cuddling and laughing our heads off at AFV. We shared mini marshmallows and chocolate chips. I am so blessed, I cannot even begin to comprehend the depth of the Father's love, knowing I deserve none of this.