Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Stuffed Shells

So the other day I made this recipe for Stuffed Shells.

Here's the pin

Apparently I need to reread directions about 4 times because I made a few mistakes. I copy and pasted just the directions part The pictures are lovely but I don't have a lap top and my computer isn't in the kitchen.

The part I messed up on was when I took the bacon out of the pan, I didn't put it back in. Then at the end I was like umm where was the bacon supposed to go?

So I just threw it in the sauce.

I also threw the parsley in the cheese mixture instead of saving it for the end.

All in all it came out fine. If I made it again I'd make a lot more sauce. I'm a really saucy kind of gal when it comes to baked pasta. It made a lot of shells and they are pretty filling so I've been eating them for lunch all week. I might have to put some in the freezer because I don't think I can eat them for two more days.

Here's how mine came out.

I was going to make some soy sauce chicken drumsticks for dinner tonight but just realized it's supposed to marinate overnight so I guess I'm not making THAT for dinner!

Finally Friday Linky Party
I Heart Nap Time
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Freaking Taxes

I just spent an hour how much we've paid out of pocket for medical stuff last year to try and see if it would help us on our taxes.

For out of pocket insurance=2323.82
For the Dentist and eye Dr =3725.96 (mostly Dentist)
For contacts and glasses=313.92

I didn't bother with the prescriptions since they weren't very much and those receipts are long gone thrown away.

After all that it didn't make any difference in how much we have to pay. Boooooooo. And the worst part? Scott didn't want to try and deduct our medical stuff because he didn't think it would make a difference. Freaking sucks when he's right.

I've already adjusted my W4 for next year so hopefully we won't have to pay anything then.
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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Fat Ass, Hair Cuts, Birthday Dinner and Etsy, oh MY!

I'm pretty sure I've exceeded my calories for the week today. Like all of today. I'll spare you the details but I think I need to get rid of the Girl Scout cookies at work and clean out the crap in my house. And not go in ANYWHERE with food other than my kitchen. After I get rid of the cake, macaroons and left over Chinese food. I'm pretty sure I could easily join an over eaters anonymous meeting and fit right in.

I've just about made myself sick of myself.

Which, really could be a good thing since that is usually what gets me to stop being an asshole and eating everything that isn't nailed down.

In other news, Trevor had a pretty good birthday I think. After school we ran to the post office annex to pick up a birthday card that got mailed with postage due. We got there at 4:13. They close at 4:00. Anyone else think that's awfully early to close any type of business? I need to bribe the teenager to go pick it up for me after school.

Then we ran to Wal Mart and I bought him a new game for his DS. Something Pokemon. Not sure if it was black and white or white and black. Whatever it was he was all sorts of excited.

Yesterday he finally decided he was ready to get a hair cut since his hair was in his eyes and annoying him. So we stopped by Great Clips and he got a trim.

It's not fancy but at least it's a bit cleaned up and he doesn't have those large pieces hanging down in front of his ears. I was tempted to cut those while he was sleeping. Kidding. Kind of.

After Scott got home we all went to New China for dinner. It was good and we all came home with left overs. I was also reminded why we never ALL go out to eat. What a fortune!

After Melissa finished her book and Trevor's DS died we kind of had conversations. It was weird.

So in other non birthday news I had another item in a treasury today. It's an owl fabric panel that you can make three stuffed owls in.

The treasury is called "Rainy Day Crafts" and has some good vintage craft stuff. I love these little treasuries. Mine is on the bottom row, 2nd from the right.

I didn't get anything new listed today but I did pick up some more stuff at the thrift store to sell. I'm almost on a first name basis with some of the people that work there now. I'm not an addict. Nope, not me.
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Happy Birthday To Trevor & Science Fair

My little fuzzy buddy is 9 today! Look at all his dark hair. Now he's just got a big mop of blonde!

Melissa turned in her science project today. Solar oven + overcast skies= getting creative to make it work ;)

Don't worry that's a recycled box.

Tonight we will go out to dinner, Trevor's choice, looks like that will be chinese.  Should be delicious!
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Sunday, February 26, 2012

Trevor's 9th Birthday Party

Yesterday we had Trevor's 9th Birthday Party!

We started the day off with ice skating. Jess has some good pictures on her phone that I'll have to get later. This is the only one I have. You can't tell but he was really happy.  While the kids skated my brother and I huddled under a heater we finally discovered. 

After we got home the family came over to celebrate.

Here's my little do it yourself dollar store cupcake stand. I was up at 6 am giving it one more coat of paint. I think the can of spray paint I got was defective or something. It kept spraying out in large droplets.  

Look at how big my niece is already.

Meeting her great grandma

For some reason a bunch of my pictures turned out blurry. I don't know if it's the camera or the operator.
Trev looks so much older with his hair long.

I know this is super blurry, but THIS is why we have birthday parties.

And a few hours later, getting a fo-hawk from his cousin.

I think he had a good time! 

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Friday, February 24, 2012

Chicken Lasagna, Daffodils and Seedlings

So last night's dinner went MUCH better. I made this recipe for Cheesy Chicken Ranch Lasagna. I thought it turned out pretty good. Maybe could have used a little bit more seasoning. I was thinking it would be good if instead of doing the milk & ranch mixture you used a can of Alfredo sauce. 

It looks like spring is coming here! My daffodils are starting to open. Aren't they pretty! I just wish they were holding their heads up.

And my little seedlings are really taking off! These over achievers are Finny's seeds, go figure!

Well off to work. I have a ton of stuff to do for Trevor's party tomorrow. I kind of wish I could just skip work and get right to it. I don't have to sleep tonight right?
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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Pinterest Flop and Dentist Idiot

So this describes last night's dinner

Let me just tell you that it was so gross. Gross doesn't even begin to describe it. I'm not usually one for throwing food out, I'll usually try to fix it somehow but NO, just no. If it makes you want to gag when you bring the fork towards your mouth? You know it's bad.

That was my "quick dinner" after taking Melissa to the dentist. Where they were trying to tell me that even though they only charge  $550.00 for the inlay she needs, my "insurance" contracts it for $795.00 but only pays $94.40 so my portion was going to be $700.60. 

Now, I'm not exactly a rocket scientist but shouldn't something only cost as much as it cost? I don't see why I should have to pay MORE than it cost. The girl looked at me like I was a total idiot when I was trying to get her to explain the reasoning behind this. I mean, if anything, throw out the insurance that's not even paying much of it and just charge me the original fee right? 

So I'm going to call today and talk to the girl that usually helps me (I'd never dealt with the one yesterday before) and see if she can get that down a bit. 

After my dinner flop and being a basket case from the $700 projected bill I ended up taking Melissa to youth group. Trevor and I went to to the dollar store and got some stuff for his party. Then we had dinner at McDonald's in Wal Mart and we picked up dinner for everyone else at another McDonald's on the way home. 9:00 for dinner? Guess sometimes it just has to work.
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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Almond Blossoms and Orange Chicken, Pretty and Tasty

My view most of the way to work today. Gorgeous blossoming almond trees. They may or may not be why I can't breate through my nose too. I just love waking up in the middle of the night with snot dripping out of my nose. Disgusting! Doesn't my nose know I don't have time to be sick??

I have Trevor's birthday party this weekend and a bunch of stuff I want to get done for that, not to mention cleaning up the house. His bedroom looks like a war zone and should probably be cleaned up before then. He's going to love when I send him in to do that. Last time he was in for an hour and got about 2 square inches cleaned up. It's time for the mom clean up anyways, lots of stuff he never plays with anymore needs to move on!

At least dinner will be easy. I got it all in the crock pot last night and just popped it in this morning. I'm attempting to make this orange chicken recipe.


I'll let you know how it turns out! I was good and made my menu for the week and then went shopping and bought everything I needed. No excuse for eating out this week!

Melissa has a dentist appointment today. Hoping she doesn't have any cavities, that would be nice. That way it won't cost me anything! Gotta save my Care Credit account for Jessica's wisdom teeth getting pulled out next month. Cha-Ching!

Well, here's to a great hump day!
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Monday, February 20, 2012

Weekend Rap Up

Sometimes I wish no one I knew knew about my blog still. It sure was great for getting things off my chest and working over things in my head. I'm starting to think of making another one and being a bit more secret about it. :)

Friday after I got off from work I decided that I'd had enough. I HAD to clean out the inside of my car. I thought about taking some pictures for blogging purposes but it was too gross! By the time I was done I had removed twenty plus water bottles. Yeah. I think I need to clean out my car a little more often. I scrubbed the seats down, vacuumed, and Armour alled the inside. I still need to wash the outside but the inside feels fantastic! So nice to have a clean car.

I got done just in time to get ready to go out with my two sister in laws and a few other gals. It's so nice to finally have sister in laws that like me. All six of us went out to the Elephant Bar. I've never been there before. I ordered a Mai Tai and the Hardwood Grilled Teriyaki Rice Bowl. Then I ordered another Mai Tai. My bill, with tip was almost $30, just for me. That was a lot of money to spend just on myself! The company was interesting. One girl, who I find absolutely hilarious, had us all laughing.  I couldn't help but notice another girl was trying to hide her horror of what the funny girl was saying. Definitely totally different types of people there! BUT everyone was nice to each other and we had a nice dinner.

After dinner we were trying to decide what we wanted to do. Eventually we ended up going to the liquor store and getting some booze and 3 of us went back to my one sister in laws house. I told them I was going to sleep on the couch since it was already ten thirty and I didn't want to have to drive home so late (and be sober). So we sat around and watched the end of a Harold and Kumar movie. I've never seen one of those and OH MY not for the faint of heart (or children under 30). Crazy!

I got up early Saturday morning (I never can sleep in at other people's houses!) and then drove home. I was home by 8. I crawled into bed and read and slept for a few hours. I didn't do much of anything important that day. Although I did get Trevor's birthday invites done and my veggie seeds planted.

Sunday I decided to tackle the laundry monster. I had it all done before I went to bed which is like a major accomplishment to me. I'm going to try really hard (I know I've said that before) to keep it up. Although I'm going to have to buy some more hangers or get rid of some clothes so they can all fit where they belong.

So Monday I had off work. Hubby had to work but the kids were all home. My step mom had invited me on my birthday to come over and craft and or scrapbook in her craft room. She made us lunch and a cake and then we played around with some paper. I made this cute bunny she had printed out the directions for. If it actually stays together for Easter it will be a miracle. I think I need to tackle it with a glue stick so everything is sticking together better.

I brought Trevor with me so he could hang out with my step brother's son who lives with my dad and step mom part time. He is 14 and they hung out for awhile. I thought maybe they would play video games together or something but they just seemed to play them separately. Kids are weird.

I ran to the grocery store afterwards since we had about one egg and a bottle of ketchup left in the fridge. I was trying to make it until Tuesday to go to the grocery store but had to give in. We needed something for dinner and lunch stuff. Tacos it was. Um delicious. I could eat Mexican food every day.

Well tomorrow is back to the grind. Four day work weeks are much better than five. My youngsters have Friday off too so only three days for them. It's like a mini vacation.Pin It

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Magazine Clean Up Pinspiration

 From Woman's Day January 2012

This issue had some inspiring stories of women that lost over 100 pounds.
Here's one that has a blog (Healthy Strides).

It takes some big determination to be able to lose that much weight. Amazing! 
And then, because we all have to eat anyways (it's all about portion control right?) 

I actually heard someone the other day say something about how we shouldn't want to eat something that tastes good, we should just eat to live. How boring would life be is that was the case? 

Chicken and Spinach Parmesan 

Doesn't this look delicious? 
My kids are always whining when they see we are having chicken for dinner.

(edited to say I made this here, it's really good and easy!)

From Woman's Day February 2012

Butternut Squash Risotto

I'm pretty sure I've never eaten butternut squash. Does it just taste like zucchini?

Pasta with Roasted Cauliflower 
and Red Onions

I wonder if I'd end up eating this all by myself. 
Although Trevor does like regular cauliflower.

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Saturday, February 18, 2012

Veggies Coming Soon!

Well I got one thing accomplished today besides Trevor's birthday invite. I finally got some of my seeds started. Scott bought me a seed starting kit and some seeds (mostly things for salsa) for Christmas. Plus I won some seeds from Finny. Hers are on the right there :)

I have another set I bought last year that I need to get out and get more pods/soil for. This one is just a little bit different. I of course need to plant some squash and zucchini along with a bunch of other stuff. Getting excited thinking of all that fresh practically free food!Pin It

Captain Underpants Invite

I just finished making Trevor's birthday invites, what do you think? He's all into Captain Underpants books right now and that's what he wanted on his invite. Silly kid!

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Thursday, February 16, 2012

Valentine Murder Mystery Book Club Book

Well three cat naps today and I finally finished reading my regular book club book selection for the month.

Valentine Murder was a quick easy read mystery about Lucy, who just can't help but investigate who could have possibly killed Bitsy the librarian.

While I was reading this book I had to go find the copyright date because of a few things:

1.) The use of the internet is "new"
2.) Leaving her child in the car while she rain in to Quick Stop
3.) Cell phone is for emergencies only
4.) Stops to use a pay phone even though she has a cell phone in her purse!
5.) Her pre-schooler is suddenly old enough to not use a car seat.

So the magical year was 1999.

Those were the days eh?

Let's see, this time of year 1999 I had just turned 25 and was seven months pregnant with  Melissa. You know THAT was a good time. Since I was totally sick the whole time I was pregnant with her I was more than happy for the next two months to hurry on by!

I was an assistant Girl Scout Leader of Jessica's Girl Scout troop. Jessica spent part of the day at Kindergarten and I didn't have a computer yet. I had quit working on December 31st. My house was SPOTLESS and I had a count down to the new baby's big day on the fridge with what I had to get done by what day.

Oh and I scrapbooked. A LOT. I was on a mission to get all Jessica's stuff caught up so I wouldn't get it mixed up with the new babies.

Funny how this productive thing I call my friend aka computer has helped to make my house a mess! Free minute? Computer!

I also didn't have a cell phone, not even for emergencies. We finally caved and got cell phones after Scott saw a bum using one. Oh and he had broke down and had to walk most of the way home. One of our neighbors even drove passed him and waved. Yeah, he REALLY likes that neighbor now.. I don't know what year that was but I know it was way after 1999.Pin It

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Electronic Age

Have you ever noticed that most people can do electronic "gadget" things according to their age?

My 2 year old niece knows how to open up an iPhone and play games on it.

My 8 year old son can hook up the Wii and get it going just fine (they beat the Sklanders game the other day. I told them they better be able to play it more after I bought so many characters for it)

My 12 year old can run all the electronics in the house.

My 17 year old can program wireless things to talk to each other, find the lock button on my Kindle so the screen quits flipping around and program any phone you bring into the house.

Me well I can work things after I push buttons for awhile and figure it out through trial and error. If I can't figure it out I hand it to Jess and she does it for me.

Scott knows how to get on the computer.

Today I was helping my Mom set up her new Kindle. She got the 3G one (I have a Fire). It took me forever to figure out how to show her how to use it. I can already see a lot of phone calls in the future ;)Pin It

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Tending Roses

Over the weekend I finished reading my book for the Christian Book Club.

Tending Roses turned out to be a very nice story.

Kate and her husband Ben go to stay with Kate's grandmother, Rose. They have a little boy, who has just had heart surgery not too long ago. They have a lot of bills piling up, Kate isn't working since she went out on maternity leave and Ben is a bit of a freelance worker so money isn't quite a constant.

So they go to stay with Grandma Rose, who has had a stroke at some point. She had had a small fire in the house and so the family is thinking that she's going to have to go to a rest home.

After Kate spends some time with Grandma she learns a lot that she never knew about her. Grandma teaches her a few lessons about living life in the slower lane.

My favorite quote from the book is

 "The secret to a happy life is not in getting what you want. It is in learning to want what you get.  Don't waste your time crying over what you're not given.  When you have tears in your eyes, you can't see all the beautiful things around you."

I think that's such a great quote. So many people put so much energy in wanting more instead of just being happy with what they are lucky enough to have.Pin It

Monday, February 13, 2012

Dancing, The Vow, and Valentine's Day

Saturday night was the big dance night! My friend that was helping me set things up ended up being really sick and wasn't able to make it. The whole party ended up being people from work, which was totally fine. Just kind of makes you wonder when you invite about fifty people and the only ones that show up are the ones you work with.  Like, are these other people really my friends? It WAS great that the people from work came though. Very nice of them and we all had a great time. It's great to work with such nice people too.

I didn't take any pictures because I didn't want to take my camera in and my phone doesn't take good pictures in the dark. I danced all night and my legs were aching before I even got home. At about 1:30 we left and went to Denny's with a few other people. I'm sure we burned enough calories dancing to make up for what we ate before we went home and passed out from exhaustion.

Sunday I attempted to sleep in but that didn't work out too well. Eventually I had to get up since I had a movie date with Jess. We went to go see The Vow with her friend, friend's mom and a bunch of other people. We didn't really talk to anyone much though since we got there right before the movie started and no one made any plans for afterwards.

I don't want to ruin anything for you but I was kind of disappointed in the movie. Except the part where Channing got up and we got a full view of his bare naked rear end. That was almost worth the $10 to get in.

If you need some last minute Valentine's ideas you should go check out my Pinterest Valentine's Board. Although, I will admit that I got ZERO Valentine's projects done.  I am going to print out some of the Vintage Valentine's for tomorrow though.

I hope you all have a nice Valentine's Day!Pin It

Friday, February 10, 2012

Fathers and Sons and Money and Hair

Today was a pretty good day because ::woop::woop:: I got a raise. AND once they run it by the board members I'll most likely be getting a much larger raise. AWESOME! Good thing I changed my W4 form, I'd really be owing taxes next year!

AND I got cake and a card at work for my birthday. Very nice!

Something else nice happened today. Trevor was looking out the window, waiting for his Dad to get home. It was so stinking cute! I think they have FINALLY bonded. I was worried for awhile that he was always going to be a mommy's boy (which, really I wouldn't mind that either) but the two of them seem to have finally connected.   Strangely enough, over video games. Hey, whatever works right?  Every day he can't wait until his Dad gets home so they can play together. They've been playing that Skylander game mostly. I'm just so glad that they have something that they enjoy doing together.

Last weekend he took him to his work while he did some personal stuff. He sent me this picture of him "helping". I thought for sure he'd come home complaining but he seemed to have a good time.

My little boy is getting so big. He's been letting his hair grow out. It's quite comical since he's never had long hair. Not since he was super tiny. So we'll be in the car and the air will be blowing and he'll realize that his hair is blowing around too. Sticking his head out the window? AWESOME. Funny how the little things are so exciting. Brushing it? Not quite his favorite activity but I keep telling him if he wants long hair he's going to have to brush it. I asked him how long he's going to let it grow and he says he wants an afro. I keep telling him he doesn't have the right kind of hair for that haha.

I hope you all have a nice weekend! We are going out dancing tomorrow night to keep up the birthday week celebrations. Should be a blast :)Pin It

Thursday, February 9, 2012

You Say It's Your Birthday...

Wednesday was my birthday so I took the day off of work. I still had to get up of course, to get the kids to school, take the dog out, etc. The animals sure do have a way of making you get out of bed.

The kids got to sleep in about an hour since I drove them to school (in my jammies) instead of making them take the bus. I came back and played around on the computer and watched some crap tv. Tradings Spouses is a great suck you in tv program. I pretty much never watch tv so it's kind of funny that one of the episodes that was on I had seen before. Go figure.

My Mom came and picked me up to take me to lunch. She had my niece with her. She was dressed like this:

Reminded me of Punky Brewster. Yes, dating myself!

She was just adorable telling me "come on auntie!" Usually she could care less about me, mostly because she LOVES her cousins. Who needs a boring old aunt when you have big kids to play with you.

We made it to Gerard's for lunch. I got an open faced turkey sandwich with mashed potatoes and maybe a tad too much gravy.

What do you think? haha. I also got a side of corn chowder but couldn't hardly eat it since I was so full, even though Adrian helped me with my lunch.

While we were standing in line the guy that buses the table said "Hi Julie!". I haven't been in there in at least a year. Amazing. He has a gift for sure.

Oh side note on lunch. While I was there (I used to work right down the street and would walk over there for lunch all the time) I saw the wife of a guy I used to work with. Nicest guy EVER. I worked there for about 3 years so we spent a lot of time talking and hanging out. His daughter even worked there for awhile. So I went up to her and said hi and asked how he was doing and she says "he's right over there". I had walked by him a couple times without even realizing it and we were sitting one booth over. So we got caught up. He went from being a manager of that little office supply store to being a truck driver. Now there is a change in careers for you!

We finished our lunch and then stopped at this thrift store on the way home. I've been in there before and actually asked them if they'd like to hire me to help them organize. I'm not kidding, I totally did. Yeah, they could still use the help. Outside is basically like a junk yard. There are a lot of nice things but they are outside, getting rained on and all in mixed matched boxes etc. I tripped on wire that was on the ground a couple times. It's like a law suit waiting to happen. Inside is a bit better but not much. Here's one (blurry) little corner on the inside porch area. It's like where do you even look?

Nothing has any sort of price on it so you have to cart it up front to find out what they'll ask for it. I didn't buy anything but I am thinking about a couple things I saw that I might go back for if they are the right price. Definitely not a place to take little kids into. Oh and speaking of little kids, the owner had  a daughter that kept following us around yacking our ears off. Kind of annoyed me too. Just leave me alone so I can shop!

After that we went back to my house for some cake (yeah I know) and to open my present. My Mom made me a cake this year, for the first time in FOREVER. I always kind of complain when it's store bought. She always gets me German chocolate since that is what I always asked for. But homemade is 100x better than the store version of those. So she brought my cake and a thing of icing so we could write on it. I used to do that all the time when I worked in a bakery when I was in high school. I just took over and did it. It was fun.

Not half bad if I do say so myself. I burnt my finger lighting all those freaking candles haha.

Don't mind my open cabinet back there. Sent my doors off with my dad to fix them up for me finally! It's not every day you get to be the center of attention (sadly Jess wasn't home from school yet).

Adrian looks a bit grumpy there. She just couldn't understand why her Grandma was hugging on Trevor. My mom took the kids over to her little place by me for awhile and Jess went over there after she got home.

Jess took this really cute picture. I just noticed when I went to take it off Facebook that she has unfriended me. Makes my heart hurt a little. Kids.

After Scott got home we went out to dinner. I'm pretty sure I could have skipped dinner and breakfast and I would have been fine.

We went to La Villa, which is a local Mexican place. It's our favorite and another place we used to walk to when we worked downtown. (We used to work down the alley from each other, that was nice!)

Flautas (crappy cell pic). Delicious! They have really good salsa and chips too.

I think Scott and Melissa look a lot alike in this picture.

Me and Jess and Mr. Goofy.

After dinner we went home and I layed on the couch. Jess painted my toe nails and then I dozed off watching Storage Wars. I'd say it was a pretty nice day!Pin It
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