TKO

Monday, January 29, 2018

As in Technical Knock Out.

I wish I could say that I was referring to my to-do list.  Or goals.  Or something positive.

But unfortunately, I am referring to me and Littlest Miss.  We were both knocked out this past week by the lovely Flu B.  Whoever said this strain isn't as bad as Flu A (Little Miss had this over Christmas) was clearly wrong as Littlest Miss and I are just now even starting to function, much less be healthy.

The only good thing about Flu B.  This:



Cuddles.  Lots and lots of cuddles. Even with her bestie Wrigley:



So many that a certain someone did not want to go to school today (don't worry baby girl.  Mama didn't want to go to work today).

But hopefully this week is much healthier, happier and productive than last week.

Missions being Accomplished

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Sometime in December, I started reading this book.
See the source image

But there is one catch -- Chapter 1 essentially requires you to purge your house behind the notion that stuff impedes simplicity.  Well, given the craziness of December, the book has been collecting dust while the "to-do" of purge has been recycled on each and every "to-do" list.

Thankfully, since the New Year, I've somehow found the drive and motivation to tackle this monstrous task. I still have some cabinets and closets (namely my own) to tackle, but I can definitely say that I've made progress.

And even with work still to go, I am starting to feel the benefit that it brings to you life and mindset.  Less physical things has definitely equated to less stress.  More simplicity.  More time.  More happiness.  More memories

Such is evident by this past weekend.  Normally, Sundays are a stressful day of racing to church, running to get errands done and just preparing for the week.  But this weekend, we did church Sunday.  With less things in the house, there was less to put away.  Which meant more time for things like this:

A fort made out of curtains.




Complete with books, movies and cushions.



So comfy that the Husband fell asleep in the tent.



Isn't this what life should be about?  (Even if it was a one-time thing as the tent caused one of the curtain rods to detach from the wall thereby being banned by mom).

Here's hoping I can finish the purging in the next few weeks so I can finally move on to Chapter 2.

Wish me luck

Monday, January 15, 2018

Unless you live under a rock, I'm guessing you've at least heard about the infamous Instant Pot.  Goodness knows my social media feeds are blowing up with various posts all discussing the magic of this kitchen appliance.

And let's be honest.  There are only so many posts this girl can see until her interest is peeked.

See the source image

So I did what any other girl would do (or maybe frugal girl) and I dug through my cabinets, listed a bunch of items that we hadn't used in years on facebook buy/sell/trade sites, sold said items, and then purchased an Instant Pot.

As I am writing it, I've yet to use it.  But fingers crossed it works because two of this weeks meals are cooked in it.  Fingers crossed that I am not going hungry those nights.

I'll definitely document my experience - as if it works like everyone says it will - it should simplify life!  Faster dinners, less cooking pots/pans/utensils, less prep (I mean supposedly you can cook frozen meat and goodness knows there have been many a days where I've had to pull an audible because I left the meat in the freezer before leaving for work), but in the meantime, here is our Week # 2 menu.  

Sunday 

This 21 Day Fix Instant Pot Beef Stew has no yellows, is gluten free, dairy free and just plain delicious! Family friendly and kid friendly healthy dinner! #instantpot #21dayfix #glutenfree #healthy #kidfriendly


Beef Stew in the Instant Pot (girls will get a deconstructed version)

Monday
Pepperoni_pizza_pasta-025

Pepperoni Pizza Pasta (adults)/Tortellini (girls) with Green Beans 

Tuesday

These Whole30 and Paleo Taco Salad Bowls are a quick and easy, fresh and flavorful weeknight meal.
Taco Salad (adults)/Taquitos (girls)

Wednesday

This Instant Pot Shrimp Scampi is so easy to make it's hard to believe it has so much flavor! #instantpot #pressurecooker
Shrimp Scampi with Broccoli - served over spaghetti squash (adults) and spaghetti (girls)

Thursday 

See the source image
Brats/Hot Dogs with Sweet Potato Tots and Broccoli

My goal this year is to get a solid, 4 week rotation. Complete with shopping lists.  And to just rotate that week by week.  But we'll see if that actually comes to fruition.



Simplicity is...

Friday, January 12, 2018

...

























Yes, donuts

Especially when they are store bought and don't involve messes at home.

And more so when they mean you get a little one-on-one time with this cutie (I may be biased.)




As discussed in my previous post, my word of the year is simplicity.  In all facets of life.  And one of the reasons for that is to make more time for what's important -- one of the key things being able to spend more quality time with those who are important to me.

So as part of my "simplicity" goals for the year, is to carve out one-on-one time with both littles.  Just a little mommy and me time.  Its good for me.  It's good for them. And it's even more heartwarming when little sister insists on buying a donut for sissie.  (hence why there is a full, uneaten donut currently sitting in my house).

So far we are two for two for donut brekkies.

And hopefully two for two for after practice dinners for this one.




Happy Friday.  Hope you have a great (and simple) weekend doing what matters!


One Word

Wednesday, January 3, 2018




I am not big on resolutions.  Don't ask me why, but something about them doesn't necessarily work.

However, given that we just rang in the new year (hello 2018) it seems like I should be setting some kind of goal or mission for the year.  And I've tried to come up with something, but the only thing that comes to mind is this one word:

See the source image

thus, my word for the year is just that: simplicity.

Simplicity in all aspects.

What exactly does that mean?  I'm not sure.  But I'm hoping that by embracing it it will lead me to more happiness, less stress, more time with friends and family, less worrying, etc.

So journey with me through out 2018 as I try to get away a bit from the chaos and focus on simplicity.

California Adventures Day 1

Tuesday, May 23, 2017




Finally.

Finally feeling somewhat caught up.  Somewhat back into a routine.  It only took a handful of days to recover from vacation and a subsequent work training.

Don't worry.  I am not complaining.  Rather, I am wishing that we could go back.  We had so much fun on vacation and more importantly, made a ton of memories.

As evidenced by my cameras (yes, cameras as I bought a point and shoot just before we left and took over 400 photos on that, PLUS all of the photos on my iPhone).  So needless to say, its going to take a bit of time to capture this vacation.

One day at a time.  And what a better day then Day 1 at Disneyland.  Which was a TOTAL surprise.  As in, the girls had no clue until we pulled up into the hotel parking lot.  We may had let it go a bit longer, but for the life sized posters of all-things-Disney.

Even though she just woke up, think she's excited?



The best part about the surprise was that she's been asking to go for nearly a year.  And has watched friend after friend go (including some of Littlest Miss's friends go) and really couldn't understand why our family had an arbitrary you-must-be-five rule (no clue where it even came from).

But without further ado, here are some highlights of Day 1 at Disney.

iPad entertainment on the flight.  Thankfully, the headphones weren't too big of a struggle!


One of our first rides.  The every popular merry-go round!




Family selfie on the boat ride through Storybook Land.  The worker's at this ride were amazing.  They took pictures of us and gave us a "gift".



   


 

Then it was off to get our first signature.  Although, we unknowingly, may have waited the longest for Tinkerbell's signature!





But its all good when it ends with a "faith, hope, and pixie dust" chat.  Especially, since we were decked out in Tinkerbell and Peter Pan gear for day # 1.

And even better, when you find tons of "pixie dust" immediately afterwards


   

Another ride!  The mad hatter's tea cups!


And of course more character meet and greets!

 
 
 

We had hoped on getting the girls a little bit of rest mid-day, but sleep was nearly impossible when your hotel has waterslides



 

And there are more rides, um, rollercoasters to ride

 
And more characters to meet

 

And this mom is convinced Disney is pumping magic energy into the air.  Other than a 20 minute nap in the car from the airport to the hotel, these girls were up from 4 AM until 10:30 PM.  And at times it seemed like they could go on for ever. 

Until the exact second we walked out the gate.

Think she was tired?

 

Not tired enough as she was up bright and early for Day # 2! 

More to come!

Whoa, weekend!

Monday, May 1, 2017



Happy, happy Monday. 


Or so I tell myself.  Especially given that Texas weather cannot decide whether to be spring or fall and my allergies are running rampant and yet another weekend has come and gone.  Sad, as I really do love weekends.  And although we didn't have any "huge" plans this weekend, we surely crammed a lot in.


Starting on Friday.  When the Husband "guilted" me into picking the girls up early as I was trying to get in my second run in eighteen months (no, seriously, check my Nike app and I've run less than 5 times since my last half marathon in October 2015).  However, given that it was hot AND humid, I was happy to cut it short.


And hang out with the Littles. What's better on a Friday afternoon then time at our favorite park (picking all the flowers...again) followed by custard.  And cotton candy custard at that.









Then it was off to home for dinner.  And homemade pizzas. 


I don't know what its is about make-your-own food, but the Littles ate it up.  As in all three of their shaped (star, butterfly and flower) pizza.



Apparently someone was not impressed with my photo taking.



And doesn't everyone need a dough necklace.  I am not sure what these girls like more -- making their own pizza or playing with the leftover dough.




Even the Husband got into the fun of it...



And will now be in charge of all adult pizzas as it was delicious (well at least the small bite of crust was that I tried.  Dang "diet" and "peppers")




The next morning we were off to gymnastics, followed by numerous errands.  Since one of them was returning clothes at the factory outlet, I may have bribed the Littles with lunch at the Rain Forest CafĂ©.




Needless to say, they had a blast AND ate all of their food (seriously, they never eat) so we may have to go back more often.  Especially on Wednesday nights when kids eat for $3.99.





We spent the rest of the day relaxing, going to Barre (me) and grocery shopping before heading to our old neighbors for dinner.  Not only was it great to catch up but the girls were in heaven -- spending time with their sweet friend AND playing with play doh and paint (two things that are essentially off limits in our house)




Can you see why?  This mess.  I just cannot deal!




And then it was Sunday.  And our last play of the year (we got the girls season tickets to the Children's Theater for Christmas).  The last show was The Little Mermaid and it was so, so, so good.  As in, it blew the other shows out of the water.  We are guessing that Disney has strict quality control provisions but who knows.





After the play, we headed to dinner with friends who were also at The Little Mermaid, but since the restaurant was across the street from one of daddy's offices, a stop in was a necessity!

The girls loved looking out the windows from the 7th story.




But they really loved playing "boss" and stamping there all-too-important documents.







Then it was off to grab some grub.  If you are in Fort Worth, I'd highly recommend Cork and Pig.  But I may leave the kids home.  Nothing against the restaurant as they were super accommodating and had a kids menu, but my kids want boxed macaroni and cheese -- not fancy macaroni and cheese with various cheeses and bacon...

...but at least we had an ipad to distract and entertain them!





After dinner we headed home and both girls crashed on the way home before 6 PM.  Thank goodness both girls can transfer from car seat to bed.  Littlest Miss ended up waking up around 7:30 and playing for a bit, but Little Miss was down for the count -- not waking up until 7:00 this morning.






Think they had any fun this weekend?

What about you?  How was your weekend?