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Aug 26, 2013

Organized Laundry Closet

I have had the laundry closet on my list of projects for a while now. It's one of those projects that I knew would only take a little while yet for some reason never got around to it. I finally completed it this morning and I love how it turned out! My closet is located in my half bath right off of my kitchen, which I love. I do wish I had a laundry "room". With a family of 5 the bathroom floor gets covered in laundry in no time! This is the bath that guests use, wishing I had a laundry room so I could just close the door! Ha!

I had the original shelf all the way across the top of the closet. (pictures below) However, I am very short (5'1") and it is hard to reach the detergent up there, especially if I purchase the large size. So I went to Walmart and purchased a 3 ft shelf for $11. Took out hubby's leveler and power drill and got to work :) I love the end result!

Here is my laundry room with the door shut (I just repainted this bath and will do a post later this week on that, waiting to put my cabinet back together that I painted :)


Here it is with the door open.


To the left, I have hung a command hook for my swiffer sweeper.


Top shelf: I store my swiffer extras. The green basket (from the dollar store) houses extra light bulbs. I also have large lawn trash bags, ziploc vacuum seal bags, and extra Lysol wipes.


The white basket holds toilet paper for this bathroom. The blue basket (also dollar tree) has my cleaning rags. This works great, as soon as the come out of the dryer they get thrown in the basket! Also extra kitchen paper towels.


My new shelf! Yes, it is wire and the other is wood, but this IS the laundry closet so it doesn't need to be perfect. :) I have all laundry related items on this shelf. Easy to reach, easy to organize. :)


The green basket holds stain removers and my 3 drawer organizer holds extra items like Dryel, delicate washer bags, washer cleaner (a mush have for HE washers!) and color catchers (these work great), etc.



I am so happy with how this laundry closet turned out! Now on to my next project! One at a time. :)





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Aug 20, 2013

Husband tag!



You may have seen the YouTube videos on the husband/boyfriend tag. One of my favorite YouTubers is Tiffany D (for her channel click HERE) I thought it was so cute and a fun way to have a fun conversation, so hubby and I sat down for a Q&A sesh. I have to say, he did pretty good! Here is what he said...in his exact words. :) H

1. She's sitting in front of the tv, what is on the screen?
The wives or whatever that show is (I do watch real housewives!)
2.  You're out to eat what kind of dressing does she get on her salad?
Thousand Island (correct!)
3.  What's one food she doesn't like?
You like all kind of food, mama (correct!)
4.  You go out to eat and have a drink, what does she order?
Dr. pepper...diet (correct!)
5.  What size shoe does she wear?
6 (correct!)
6.  If she was collecting anything, what would it be?
Junk (lol)
7.  What is her favorite type of sandwich?
BLT (correct!)
8.  What would this person eat every day if she could?
A bowl of cereal (I do lol)
9.  What is her favorite cereal?
Frosted Flakes (correct!)
10. What is her favorite music?
You like country (correct!)
11.  What's her favorite sports team?
I wouldn't know it...You like baseball so I would say Atlanta Braves (correct!)
12. What's her eye color?
Dark brown (correct!)
13.  Who's her best friend?
Me (double correct!)
14.  What's her heritage/where is she from?
Half Korean (correct!)
15.  You bake her a cake for her birthday, what kind of cake do you bake?
You don't really like a whole lot of cake, but if I had to guess it would be chocolate because you like chocolate. I like ice cream cake (thanks for making sure I new you liked ice cream cake...;) and I am a chocolholic, but my favorite cake is pound cake :)
16.  Did she play any sports?
Yes, soccer, cross running (correct! cross country :)
17.  What could she spend hours doing?
Facebook, computer, blogging (Obviously I need to spend more time OFF the computer, lol)
18.  What is one unique talent she has?
Loving everyone (awe!)


There was one more that asked what is one thing that he does that makes me ill, or something like that. We skipped that one because we don't like to bring up the things we don't like in each other. :)

This was fun! Sit down with your significant other and have a questions session to see how much they really pay attention! Tony knew way more than I thought he would. Never underestimate a man, even though you don't think they pay attention to details, they do! <3






Crockpot Yogurt


Good morning! 


wrapped up in cozy beach towels :)

Ty eats yogurt every morning for breakfast. He loves it. However, it is almost impossible to find yogurt that isn't laden with sugar but full fat. It seems like every yogurt is low fat or fat free. Growing baby brain needs lots of good fats. :) So dilemma solved, I'll make my own.

I found several recipes, but most made TONS of yogurt, and with a shelf life of 2 weeks or so, Ty and I could not eat that much. So I found THIS recipe and could not wait to get started! I followed the recipe exactly but added a teaspoon of vanilla the same time I added yogurt. YUM! I am making this again with sweetener and strawberries for the girls. :) This made 1 quart of yogurt, the actual size I buy in the store!

Ingredients
  • 1 quart of milk, preferably full fat
  • 1 tablespoon plain yogurt with live-active cultures
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (optional)
Instructions
  1. Pour the milk into your crock pot and turn the heat on medium or high. You want to heat the milk very slowly until it reaches 180°F (30 mins to 1 hour).
  2. Turn off the slow cooker, unplug, and allow the milk to cool to 120°F (about 30 mins).
  3. While waiting for the milk to cool, measure out your plain yogurt starter and allow it to come to room temperature.
  4. Once milk is 120°F, add the yogurt and stir gently until it is fully incorporated.
  5. Cover with lid and then wrap the slow cooker with several towels.
  6. Set it where it will be undisturbed for 6 to 8 hours. Yogurt likes a quiet, still environment to ferment.
  7. Place the cultured yogurt into the refrigerator for at least 4 hours before eating to ensure that it’s fully set.
  8. Enjoy!

This was so easy and yummy!



Aug 13, 2013

7 & 8 Month update!











Time to move the crib down again!


Weight & length:  On his 8 month birthday: about 26" long and 16.8 pounds

Sleeping:  Still up every 3 hours. While learning how to scoot and crawl, more often. He is now on the standard 2 nap a day schedule (except while working on a big developmental step)

Eating: Still nursing on demand and eating 3 meals a day. He is eating all kinds of pureed foods. Also puffs and toast with butter, banana, or egg yolk. 

Diapers: Size 3

Clothing:  Still in 6 months

Hair: Dark brown, getting so thick now! Still has his adorable hairline and has horrible bedhead! so cute.

Eyes: dark, dark brown like mine. :)

Personality:  Still the happiest in the morning. What a personality he has! He has started getting a little shy and will hide his face in my chest when someone is taking to him. He is perfect when we take him places and lets people hold him easily. He does great during church, etc. He is such a joy.  He is our little observer.  He is so content on sitting and watching and taking in the world around him. He is more sensitive to the tone of our voice, especially daddy's.

Milestones: Oh goodness, he is rolling all over the  place, scooting and trying to crawl! He loves to sit but wants to stand holding on to things. He can pull himself up holding on to certain things and can walk holding our hands! 

Firsts: Went to the park for the first time, LOVED IT! First wedding and first family beach trip.



Aug 12, 2013

Chicken Enchiladas


School started today, so I am working on my meal planning and scheduling for the next month. With school starting comes homework, soccer, dance etc. Even though I am a SAHM, I am super busy during the day, so I love freezer cooking and crock pot cooking! 

For other freezer cooking recipes click Deal Meals on the the top bar. :)

Today, I am posting chicken enchiladas. These freeze so well. I modified the original recipe and can not remember where I found it to link back.

3 chicken breasts
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup shredded cheese (plus more to top)
chopped onion
cumin to taste
salt and pepper to taste

tortillas
cheese (for topping)
enchilada sauce
any other toppings you may like

Combine first 7 ingredients and mix well. Add by spoonful to center of tortillas in a line shape. Roll tortillas enchilada style.

To prepare for freezing: Lay enchiladas seam side down on wax paper lined cookie sheet. Place in freezer until frozen. Place in Ziploc bag and return to freezer. Write on bag "date, thaw, bake 350 for 25-30 minutes)

To cook: Cover bottom of baking dish with enchilada sauce. Place enchilada seam side down in baking dish, top with cheese and sauce. Bake on 350 for 25-30 minutes.




Vietnamese Fish Tacos with Mango Salsa

My husband and I have traveled to Virginia Beach twice. While we normally visit Myrtle Beach in SC, we absolutely love Virginia Beach. The board walk, the restaurants, the simplicity. Our favorite restaurant is Catch 31 (HERE). We love their lunch menu. We know we will not head to VA beach and not eat here. :) The first time we visited several years ago, I ate the fish tacos for lunch. They were delicious! They had a mayonnaise based sauce and were fabulous! So on our last trip, I decided to order the same. Little did I know, their menu had changed slightly. After talking with our waitress, she assured me that the new tacos were well worth the change......

She couldn't have been more correct. After gobbling up ALL of my tacos, she wrote down a copy cat recipe, not the actual recipe of course :). After making them at home, they tasted identical!

The recipe she wrote down


We love this, it is so simple, fresh, healthy and delish! Hope you enjoy!

Ingredients:

Flour Tortillas (small)
Swordfish/mahi mahi/ or red snapper (the restaurant uses all 3, I used 2 filets of swordfish) *note* any 
          'non-flaky, steak-like' fish would work
hoisin sauce
slaw mix (asian cabbage slaw) 
Mango Salsa (recipe follows)
tortilla strips
sriracha (optional)

Mango Salsa: loosely followed THIS recipe, but replaced red pepper with tomato
Onion
Tomato
Cilantro
Jalapeno
Lime
Mango

Prepare mango salsa. Cook swordfish in a little butter in cast iron skillet for 5-7 minutes per side, or until done. Chop swordfish in 1 inch cubes and add back to pan (off of heat). Add enough hoisin sauce to just cover. Also, mix a little hoisin with the slaw mix, just enough to cover. (Their slaw is more pickled I believe, so I just marinated mine in the sauce) Hoisin can be overwhelming if you use too much. It is very sweet. 

Take tortilla and pour a slight bit of hoisin onto it. Add fish, slaw mix, salsa, a few tortilla strips, and fresh cilantro....enjoy! I also topped with sriracha which we love. If you do not like heat, do not use this. :)

Catch 31's is on top and mine on the bottom. I used less hoisin sauce to cut down on sugar. :)






Aug 10, 2013

Cellulitis what?!?!


A yucky post follows: 

So mosquitoes love me. Always have, always will. I say it's because I'm so sweet.....my mom laughs at that one. I can be outside with my entire family, get bitten no less than 6 times and no one else in my family gets one. I'm used to it. I know they will welp, itch like the dickens for about 4 hours, then in the morning it will be gone. 

So Thursday night when I got 4 mosquito bites while helping my dear hubby work on his dirtbike in the garage, I thought nothing of it. 

Friday morning, I woke up to pain in my leg. I had plans to take the girls shopping and to have a nail day, so I toughened up and went on about my day. As the day went on, my leg grew redder and well, just grew! It swelled so bad. I was glad I had the stroller to lean on because it was very painful. 

What did I do? I went home and said....I'll just see how it is in the morning. ha! I am not one to go to the doctor for anything! So, today (Saturday) morning, this is what it looked like....



The dark purple spots are where the original bites were (of course MUCH smaller) the red from the ankle to the knee is infection. YUCKY!




So off to urgent care I went......

Cellulitis is the culprit. Why? Because I scratch the dickens out of them and they got infected. So I have learned my lesson, no more scratching! :) So 14 days of antibiotic (I will definitely be taking my probiotics) and elevation of my leg. I expect to make a full recovery. :) PS. Cellulitis, although a bacterial infection, is not contagious, believe you me...I asked 

See below for more information. 


What is cellulitis?

Cellulitis is a skin infection caused by bacteria. Normally, your skin helps protect you from infection. But if you have a cut, sore, or insect bite, bacteria can get into the skin and spread to deeper tissues. If it is not treated with antibiotics, the infection can spread to the blood or lymph nodes. This can be deadly.
Some people can get cellulitis without having a break in the skin. These include older adults and people who have diabetes or a weak immune system. These people are also more likely to develop dangerous problems from cellulitis. And they are more likely to get cellulitis again.

What causes cellulitis?

Cellulitis is caused by bacteria (usually strep or staph). Some people are at risk for infection by other types of bacteria. They include people with weak immune systems and those who handle fish, meat, poultry, or soil without using gloves.

What are the symptoms?

At first, the infected area will be warm, red, swollen, and tender. As the infection spreads, you may have a fever, chills, and swollen glands.
Cellulitis can occur anywhere on the body. In adults, it often occurs on the legs, face, or arms. In children, it is most common on the face or around the anus. An infection on the face could lead to a dangerous eye infection.
See a doctor right away if you have an infected area of skin and:
  • The infected area is getting redder, more painful, or larger, or it has red streaks extending from it.
  • You have a fever or chills.
  • The infected area is on your face or your groin.




Aug 7, 2013

My brother is off the market!




My brother was married on July 20th and I was so honored to be a part of their wedding! The venue was a gorgeous bed and breakfast nestled in the hills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. I love my sister in law so much and am so happy to call her family! <3 

To keep from posting a gajillion pictures, I am going to link the facebook albums here :) (each album will open in a separate window)

for the photographer's album, click HERE

for my album from rehearsal night, click HERE

for my album from the wedding, click HERE





Ty's first visit to the park!


Last Sunday, Tony and I took Ty to the park for the first time. He had a blast in the swing! Tony "hung" him on the monkey bars and let go! Ahhh! Mama was scared, but he had his hands right by him. Ty actually hang on for about 5 seconds. More than what I can do! He wasn't too sure when we went down the slide. I think he had fun, we sure did!













Aug 5, 2013

Turkey lettuce wraps

Do you love PF Changs? Do you ALWAYS order their lettuce wraps for an appetizer because they are so yummy! So excited to share one of my favorite recipes with you. These are so much like PF Changs, you will think you are dining there! I changed a few things based on what I had on hand. :)


NGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup instant brown rice
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil (I used olive oil)
  • 1 pound 93%-lean ground turkey
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger (I used ground ginger)
  • 1 large red bell pepper, finely diced (I used green pepper)
  • 1 8-ounce can water chestnuts, rinsed and chopped
  • 1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce, (see Note)
  • 1 teaspoon five-spice powder, (see Note)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 heads Boston lettuce, leaves separated (I used bagged lettuce and served "salad style")
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh herbs, such as cilantro, basil, mint and/or chives (did not use fresh herbs)
  • 1 large carrot, shredded



PREPARATION

  1. Bring water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add rice; reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large nonstick pan over medium-high heat. Add turkey and ginger; cook, crumbling with a wooden spoon, until the turkey is cooked through, about 6 minutes. Stir in the cooked rice, bell pepper, water chestnuts, broth, hoisin sauce, five-spice powder and salt; cook until heated through, about 1 minute.
  3. To serve, divide lettuce leaves among plates, spoon some of the turkey mixture into each leaf, top with herbs and carrot and roll into wraps.

TIPS & NOTES

  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare the filling (through Step 2), cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day. Serve cold or reheat in the microwave.
  • Notes: Hoisin sauce is a spicy, sweet sauce made from soybeans, chiles, garlic and spices. It will keep in the refrigerator for at least a year.
  • Often a blend of cinnamon, cloves, fennel seed, star anise and Szechuan peppercorns, five-spice powder was originally considered a cure-all miracle blend encompassing the five elements (sour, bitter, sweet, pungent, salty). Look for it in the supermarket spice section.

NUTRITION

Per serving: 285 calories; 11 g fat ( 3 g sat , 1 g mono ); 66 mg cholesterol; 24 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 26 g protein; 5 g fiber; 543 mg sodium; 390 mg potassium.
Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (150% daily value), Vitamin C (140% dv), Iron (25% dv), Folate (20% dv).



Image and original recipe



Jun 24, 2013

Ty's first beach trip!


Tony decided to whisk Ty and me away a couple of weekends ago to Virginia Beach. We love Virginia beach so much, but honestly have never taken the girls there! We always take them to Myrtle. My husband, as you know, races dirt bikes in the Virginia series and the race that weekend was within an hour of Virginia Beach, so we decided to head out. Well, turns out that Tropical Storm Andrea hit and rained the race out, but it ended up being gorgeous at the beach! Here are some pictures.

Just got to our hotel!

With Daddy on the balcony

Heading out....little man



Toes in the sand

Washing it off

OOOOOh, it's cold!

One of our hotel's 3 fun pools and lazy rivers

Walking the boardwalk

Daddy and Ty with Neptune


I will not go to sleep, I will not go to sleep

Beautiful view


The next few pictures of from my cell phone.

Daddy and Ty strolling in the early morning sun 


Too much fun!






Here are a few videos of Ty's first time in the ocean and in the pool:

Please ignore my voice! ha! I have no idea what "S-eeeeee-and" is. lol