Thursday, June 18, 2009


Today I went to the fancy mall and got a free $10 gift card. Don't know if they'll still have any left, but if you sign up, maybe you can get one for yourself.

The word on the street is that Frank's Pizza is moving.......closer to our house! When we first read the article, there was no clue as to where they were going. I've had my fingers crossed that it wouldn't be out in the burbs. Thank goodness. You guys already have this place, so we need Frank's to stay here. But nothing beats my all time favorite pizza joint in the cities.

I'm enjoying adding links lately. I think it's fun.

So yes, we joined Sam's. It makes me feel a little dirty, but have to admit that I love it. I can spend hours looking around that place. They have a summer deal for a $15 membership so we thought we'd give it a try to see if we use it enough to make a yearly membership worth it. If so, we may switch over to Costco. Thoughts? Anyways, it's gotten me into a major cooking mood. I love buying a big bag of peppers because then I have to come up with lots of ways to use them throughout the week. We bought a huge pork loin and cut it up and froze it. I grilled one of them on Monday. Amazing.

Since it rained the day we had free tickets to Adventureland for RJ's work day, they gave us a new set of tickets to use whenever we want. Holy cow. This makes me excited! We had so much fun and were pretty bummed to leave so we can't wait to go back!

No pictures today. Gotta get busy!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

I can't wait for nap time so I can waste hours of time on this.....


It's going to be humid today. I've enjoyed this cooler June SO much and am not ready for the hot weather. I love sunshine and 70's. I can even handle a little of the lower 80's, but much more than that and I stay away. We finally (thankfully!) gave in and turned the air on last night for the first time of the year. I don't mind paying extra for air conditioning. After seeing our enormous bills for heat (thank you, old house) little wimpy ones for air don't seem so bad. And to me it is seriously worth it. If I want to be uncomfortable, I'll go outside. In my HOME I want to be comfortable! Plus, have you ever tried nursing a baby when you're all hot and sticky? It's my worse nightmare. I can be painfully cheap a lot of the time, but there are a few things I will pay extra for. Heat. Air conditioning. Paper towels (go Viva!!). Date nights. So today when I'm hot,

I'll try to remember we could be living in this:

And until then, we'll be taking our naps dressed like this:
Man, can you ever get enough pictures of babies sleeping? Especially when they put their little bottoms up in the air like this?
Or like this?

We babysat Henry's best buds Noah and Asher last night. They were here for a few hours and left at 8:30. They had a non-stop, crazy, loud, tackling, tickling, running, playing, very minimal fighting, time. I love watching them play together. Sometimes I have to remind myself that they're not just friends, but cousins. Even better! So needless to say, Henry is still sleeping and Harper slept until 6 and is already taking her first nap! He has finally started sleeping in later when he's up late. (except on Saturdays, of course, when he's up at 6 no matter what, or so it seems.....)So, we've made the executive decision to push back their bedtime to 8 during the summer. There's too much fun to be had to go to bed at 7.
Next post: Our adventures in joining Sam's Club and grilling a pork loin.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

We had a crazy and fun week last week. We went to VBS every day. I helped in the nursery and Henry got to go to 2s and 3s. He had so much fun! But I tell ya, getting me and the kids ready to get to the church by 8:30 was a lot of work. I can't imagine how hard it would be to be a working mom and do that all the time. Phew! So it's been nice this week taking things easy. Friday afternoon we dropped Harper off at a babysitter's and took Henry to Adventureland for RJ's work event. It was a blast! Henry had so much fun and was so brave with all the rides. Unfortunately it started to rain so we only got in a couple of hours, but it was free so we really can't complain. He looked so big on all those rides.....

So, Harper is not exactly sleeping through the night anymore, but is still doing a good job. She's getting up once, kind of randomly, usually around 3 or 4. Then she'll sleep until 7, 8, or sometimes 9. Crazy! Henry has always been SUCH an early riser. I think this girl will sleep more like her daddy while Henry and I are up at the crack of dawn starting our day.
RJ's immediate family is pack full of "R" names. I never thought we would name our children names with the same first letter, but that's just how it happened. Two of our favorite names were Hazel (yes, I still like that name, Mom!) and Harper. And now I love the sound of their names together. So on Etsy, I found a shop that sells these iron-ons that I'm going to use for their next photo shoot. Big "H" and little "h". Aren't they adorable?!?
Have a great week!

Monday, June 8, 2009

What we've been up too.....

#1. Dressing up my little peanut is getting more and more fun the older she gets. On Sunday I made her look like a Southern Belle....she even had sparkly red shoes on. Unfortunately when I took off her hat she had a tick on her head. GROSS! I freaked and ran to find our church's resident nurse. Dana is the best. Thankfully it hadn't stuck yet and then my friend Jenn heroically killed it with a push pin. The hat had traveled to MN with us so I'm assuming it snuck in that way. Gross.
#2 I even put in enough effort to get the kids matching! Such a sweet pair.
#3. Practicing lots of tummy time. She's getting stronger and stronger.
#4. I bought Henry this helmet at a neighborhood garage sale and he wore it the rest of the day except for nap and bedtime. He also wore it first thing in the morning while he ate breakfast. You can never be too safe.
#5. Am loving my new baby legs. I received an adorable pair with polka dots we won from a blog and have used them so much that I decided I needed 50 more pairs. I was searching the web for a good deal and came across some DIY babylegs. I forwarded it to my friend and she whipped them up in no time. You can buy a pack of 3 knee high socks at Target for $6.99 and there are a lot of cute pairs. I love them! And it sure beats the price of the real deal ones, which I absolutely love.
#6 Getting my butt kicked by Jillian Michaels. This 30 Day Shred is serious business and I'm feeling it! I started it last Tuesday and have missed 2 days, but am pretty pleased with how things are going so far.
It has 3 levels, starting at level 1 and working your way up. Each level is only 20 minutes, and has a lot of basic moves like jumping jacks and push ups, but is very intense. I love it and hate it all at the same time.
I haven't done much exercising other than walking for the last few years and certainly have not jumped around much since having children. Quite different than it was pre-kids.....

I step back on the scale tomorrow.....

Hope you are all having a great start to your week! We have VBS all week and am enjoying some free time while the kids take a huge nap. It wore them out. This week is gonna go very quickly!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Great Wednesday!

Today has flown by. We had a play date in Ankeny with some old college friends and I had a great and encouraging time with some excellent conversation. I'm so thankful to be surrounded by so many moms who are good examples of being so intentional in raising their children in a Godly way.

Henry is completely wiped. He went down at 2. I don't expect to hear from him before RJ gets home.

Before the playdate, I went to a garage sale since I rarely get up to Ankeny for that purpose. There was one advertised with "garage sale prices" so I was pumped thinking it'd be cheap, aka $.50 - $1.00. Am I right here? Tops $2, bottoms, $3, and outfits $4. It wasn't that the prices annoyed me so much, but why did she have to say they were "garage sale prices"? Can I say it again...."garage sale prices". Lady, I get stuff at Baby Gap and Old Navy brand new quite often for less than that, so I wouldn't really consider it "garage sale prices". What's a "garage sale price" to you? I know I'm painfully cheap. Oh well. I need to just learn my lesson and cool it with garage sale-ing.

Alright, I'm seriously going to get some pictures up soon! (mom)

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Tuesday and Quinoa

We just got back from the hospital lab where they took some of Henry's blood. He did a great job! I had him tested for lead a couple of weeks ago since we live in an old house and had seen a story on the news about it, and it came back a teensy bit high. So they wanted to take some blood from his arm as opposed to his finger because it's more accurate. We get the results this afternoon.....hopefully everything is fine!

If you are a Willow girl and went to our ladies retreat last month, then you got to enjoy the Quinoa salad. It was really good and really healthy and good for you and all that stuff. I bought a couple of boxes of it at Trader Joe's and tried the recipe on the box last night. It was yummy! I just had some leftovers for lunch and think it was even better the 2nd time around. Here's the recipe: (my changes in red)

Garlic Chicken Stir-Fry with Quinoa, Peppers and Basil

1 cup Trader Joe's Organic Quinoa prepared with chicken stock according to package directions
2 cups Chicken Broth
1 1/2 pounds Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breast Tenders
4 tablespoons Garlic Flavored Olive Oil (just regular ol' olive oil, folks)
1 small onion, thinly sliced1 red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced (I also used an orange pepper...we just joined Sam's Club so I've got a boat load of peppers to get through!)
5 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced (I just put in about 1/2 tsp on my minced garlic from the jar that keeps in your fridge. I love that stuff.)
20 leaves fresh sweet basil, julienne (I didn't have any fresh basil, so I added about 1 tsp of basil pesto...from Trader Joe's, of course!)
Grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Cut chicken into one inch pieces. Heat large nonstick skillet over high heat and add the oil. Add chicken and saute for 5 minutes or until golden brown. Add onions, peppers, and saute for one or two more minutes. Add garlic and saute until peppers become slightly limp, but still bright, about one to two minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove the pan from heat. Add basil and quinoa. Toss until basil wilts and garnish with Parmesan cheese. Serves four.

I've seen quinoa at Dahl's and am guessing it's at the healthy food stores like Campbell's and wonder if they have some at the Metro Market? A little goes a long ways. I'm excited to try all these recipes as well. I'm trying to get healthy. Gotta start somewhere, right?

Monday, June 1, 2009

Oh yeah...

Harper is sleeping through the night. Woo-Hoo! A whole 4 months sooner than her big brother. She goes about 10 1/2 hours. It's been a few nights now, but I certainly don't count on it when I go to sleep. It just seems too good to be true!

Trader Joe's

Stop what you're doing right now. Go to, select the contact us section, then the email us section and select the location request and request it for our city! Seriously, if you've never been to one before, they are the best. I've been a few times up in the cities and we went again this past weekend. It's cheap, healthy, unique, and just plain awesome. Seriously. Do it now!

Sorry I've been a blogger downer lately. We don't have our regular computer hooked up to our cable right now and we're just using our laptop so I'm not able to download photos. And I don't so much like blogging without photos. So maybe someday I'll get better again.

We had a blast last week in MN! We stayed in a hotel with a water slide, spent time with lots of family, and went to a beautiful wedding. RJ had today off as well, but tomorrow is back to normal. Hope you all have a great week!


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