Sunday, April 19, 2015

meal planning and some great news

We have been busy as usual over here, V is back playing soccer and has been taking swim lessons perfecting his strokes for swim team which will be starting in about a month. Also, V will be having a birthday in about 2 weeks. So there has been planning for that too. Not to mention present shopping. I think I am all done with the present shopping (thank goodness for Amazon), I need to pick up some wrapping paper and tape. V wants to have a few friends over to play board and video games. All of them said yes, and one boy has a lot of allergies (milk, eggs, gluten, nuts, not sure if there is more) So my plan is to only serve allergy free snacks, so there is no worry about cross contamination. I am thinking fruit, tortilla chips, salsa and then send the boys home with cake to eat at home. I will accept suggestions.

Yesterday V had a play date with a classmate and I ordered Pizza Hut his friend ate 7 pieces of a medium cheese pizza. V ate 1. Seriously, 7! I couldn't believe it. I think if there would have been more, he would have eaten more. This was after he scarfed down 4 chocolate chips cookies we made. I had to stop him, he wanted to just keep eating. I do think they had fun though.

Don't mind the mess, boys are messy.

So I was perusing pintrest this morning looking for new recipes for suppers this week.

I first found Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce doesn't it look delish? I love vodka sauce and this reminded me of that, sans vodka (because that is expensive). I would want to add some veggies, and maybe some chicken to it.

photo credit

I honestly know better than to look at Pioneer Woman but I won't lie, everything she makes look divine.

I also found this lovely delicious looking recipe of Mushroom Asiago Chicken, I was going to share a picture, but her site prohibits it...I even had a the photo credit link below...well trust me, it looks yummy.

useless photo credit

What about these???

photo credit

After realizing I am hungry and wanting creamy and mushrooms (because the first thing I would add to the creamy tomato sauce would be mushrooms), that maybe I should stay away from Pintrest when I am hungry.

So you made it this far, are you ready for our GREAT news???? V is FINALLY strep free. If you recall he had his tonsils/adenoids removed over a year ago, he finally got a clean swab! Let me tell you, it has been a long year (plus) of strep.

Where do you get your recipes?

Are you on pintrest?

Do you want mushrooms now too?

Sunday, March 29, 2015

a bit of time for me..first time in almost 8 years

I told you in my last post about how we joined a gym. I have put Mr. V first always, all the time in the first almost 8 years of his life. Our first gym outing was Friday night, he went with the kids program, and I did 25 minutes on the elliptical, 25 minutes on the bike and 13 minutes on the dreadmill before I hit up the hot tub. I won't lie, the mile I did on the dready in 13 minutes was HARD. It was last, and I did one minute intervals of running after my long abstinence from running. Quite honestly, the first 3 minutes of the elliptical (which I did first) I didn't think I would be able to make 25 minutes...but you know what..I can do hard things..well things would be easier if I have been working out all this time.

V was not impressed by the experience. This makes things hard for me. I love him and I want him to have good experiences, probably not a reality check, I get that..but I don't want to fight about going to the gym.

Last night when I suggested to him that I wanted to hit it up for an hour before he was heading to his last swim lesson at 11. He looked at me and said, "this would be time for you". I looked at him and said, "Yes, that is true". My heart broke. For some reason, I didn't think about the hour we would be spending at his swim lesson. So we left home at 9 to get to the gym at 9:30 for my hour workout and to leave by 10:30 to get to swim by 11. It took me longer than anticipated to get from dropping him off to get on the machine/clean off machine/move etc... I was thinking about the trip to swim and thinking we might need to leave early..there is a bit of time in the pick up/drop off, that I hadn't added previously. So I ended up leaving early and go to swim a bit early, it was a good idea we left early.

As we were walking out of the gym, V inquired what I did, and I explained what I did, he responded with, "Are you enjoying your workout? Because you are already looking better Momma". Seriously twice of working out..he will make his future wife so happy.

What is the funniest thing you have heard a kid say?

Do you take time for you? This makes me feel guilty.

Thursday, March 26, 2015


You probably forgot us over here..but we haven't forgotten you!

We have been quite quiet. Why? WELL...honestly..not much to say. Then tonight, I started to think about everything I wanted to share..and then I am thinking, this is going to be  a LONG entry. So let's make this quick..

First of all, V had a sleepover at the log cabin for cub scouts, lots of fun on a Friday night. Saturday he was a disaster...evidently not much sleep happened, then he ended up with hives...

all over his arms and legs. I figured he hadn't used his sleeping bag since last fall, and then we camped outside, so many more it must be an allergic reaction to the chemicals that were used to treat the sleeping bag.

On Sunday afternoon he broke out again, and then I thought maybe it was due to the floor rug that was folded up under his bed that he pulled out. Maybe it was a dust allergy reaction.

On Monday, I called the nurse at the school to let them know he had the hives, must be an allergy and that if they reappear I will pick him up. I didn't want them to worry about his breathing. I never got a call, so when I picked him up from after care, the hives were reappearing. At this point, I decided I needed to take him to urgent care.

So I get there and it is an hour wait. His only symptom is the hives. No fever, no headaches, no stomach ache, no ear ache, etc. We finally get called back, I explain to the nurse the issue, but also his history of strep. And a bit worried it might be scarlet fever. But honestly felt I was being crazy, since there were no other symptoms.

The initial nurse told us, it wasn't scarlet fever, since it was prickly, she would have the doctor take a look. The doc came in, I showed him pictures, he agreed, it wasn't scarlet fever, but to be sure it wasn't strep and just an allergy, let's do a culture. As many of you know, Strep has many different symptoms. Guess was strep!

We have an appointment with his ped on Friday, April 10th (after antibiotic, etc) to be screened again and to see if we can get him on long term care. I don't think he has ever gotten over this.

Ok..moving on. My working out has been nonexistent. HOWEVER, we joined a gym. Both of us! V's membership includes up to 2 hours of childcare a day in open gym format, as well as Friday night structured events, including an hour of swimming with a life guard on duty. I could actually leave the gym for 2 hours for this. But I plan on working out during this time. So that being said, both of our bags are packed for our first day experience at our new gym tomorrow night.

I have been really watching what I have been eating/not eating out. I am really frustrated with how I feel like I am still gaining at this point. Gaining has been measured by how my clothes aren't fitting.

V will be turning 8 soon, and I am super proud of the little man I have raised. So many people will tell me he doesn't act like other 7 year olds. For instance, his school had an award ceremony yesterday. He was mentioned he was receiving the perfect attendance for last trimester, and he told his teacher he didn't deserve it, because he was out on _______. His teacher told him to let them know at the office.

So today, he ended up getting hurt and ended up at the nurse. He stopped on his way to the nurse to let them know he didn't deserve the attendance award. They thanked him for his honesty and sent him onto the nurse. LOL He cracks me up.

Ok..enough about us for tonight.

Tell us more about you.

Ever been honest like V?

ever fight an illness?

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

my best kept secret....

So...some of you already know if you follow me on facebook you might have seen this yesterday...

I disclosed where I disclosed where we get our grassfed meats

We were referred from our good friend Kelly the culinarian you know when you get a good referral from a foodie, it is going to be good! AND she didn't disappoint!

So as you know we are just 1.5 (or 4.5 depending on V's appetite) family. Steve from VDL has worked with us to get us a smaller share size and smaller steak size. He really cares and tries to help fit your family's needs.

I also shared his info with my coworker today and found out he actually has TWO TRIPS to the area every two months, where he hits Downer's Grove which is one town from us, where we were going much farther previously (OK, disclaimer...we would travel many miles to get this meat) evidently, it is because we were on one list..I had no anyway..I got the lowdown on his trips to the Chicago area....

This is what I received from him today:
I make one run per month, one to Chi2 and the next to Chi, etc.
The Chi2 stops are:
Appleton, Wi. (Friday)
Northern Milwaukee, 2 stops. (Friday)
Badger CrossFit in Wauwatosa (Sat AM)
Pleasant Street in Milwaukee (Sat AM)
Another gym in south Milwaukee on Sat AM
Gurnee Il, about 9 AM
Wilmette Il about 10:10 AM
B&W Gym on Ridge Ave, about 10:50 AM
CrossFit Defined on West Lawrence at about 11:00
Windy City CrossFit on Ravenswood at about 11:20
CrossFit Defined on Belmont at about 11:45
South Loop CrossFit downtown at about 12:15
CrossFit Rise in Schaumburg at about 1:15.
Those times are approximate.
The Chi Stops are:
A3 CrossFit in GraysLake at about 07:30
CrossFit Freedom at about 08:00
Two other gyms in Mundelein or Lake Forrest sometimes.
CrossFit Illumine in Niles at about 10:00
Doghouse Crossfit on Northwest Highway
Windy City again
Division street Crossfit
Big City CrossFit on Lake Street downtown.
CrossFit Paradox in Downers Grove.
Time varies quite a bit on the Chi stops.  I can also add a few stops to the Chi route, especially late on the route, like further south than Downers Grove.  As long as they don’t mind picking up in the afternoon that is.

Seriously..what a great guy! I love that he is so flexible!

So if you have any questions, please contact him at

My experience has been nothing but extraordinary. Everything we have received has been the best quality and honestly I will never buy from a chain store again. We haven't tried chicken yet.. but last time we got breakfast bulk sausage and V ate it all and said it was the best he ever ate. We also LOVE the grass fed beef. You should check out the website at Many of your questions will be answered right there!

Please remember they have a great referral program, please let him know we sent you...and when you refer others in the future, be sure they refer you!

Any questions, please let me know, we love it.

Monday, March 9, 2015

How NOT to purge/lose, but to repurpose

If you know V in real understand his love for cars go way back. He was parking cars from about age 1 through today. He literally parks his cars everywhere....and I mean EVERYWHERE.

Well if you recall a few months ago, we got an electric fireplace tv stand. So our old one was sitting here waiting to either head to the dumpster/to a needy friend/or to a charity.

Here is what we had...\
the back

and is the new back

With ramps...any idea what we are making?

how about now?

yep you guessed it..a new parking it?

I want to find some decals for streets and I am trying to figure out how to add straws as railings. ;)

This is how NOT to get rid of things. But V is so excited. ;)

What is the most creative thing you did recently?

Any suggestions to his parking garage?

Are you crazy like me?

Thursday, March 5, 2015

How I feel about.... (raw entry)

This entry will be raw, please understand this is in no way directed at anyone here.

I do not like how you and someone with you sees me and closes the door. This makes me feel like you are talking about me. Obviously you could be talking about something else, but have a heart.

I do not like how you are not free anytime in the future or in the last two years to get ice cream or pizza. I am not inviting us to your vacation home, we just wanted to see you. The best way to get rid of us is to stop responding, and stop inquiring how we are.

I don't like how some judge me and my food issues. I admit to my food issues, I don't ask you to understand them, just understand this is not a chosen reaction, this is my very real reaction.

I am so tired of wearing my winter coat, I literally want to burn it. I know it would feel so satisfying until it will be cold next year and I would have to shell out $$$ to get a new one.

I heard the birds singing, and it made me extremely happy. The sight of sunshine and 50+ degrees in the 10 day forecast, makes my heart sing.

I have been sleeping HORRIBLY. I have been meaning to get on dready for weeks, but I end up awake 2-4:30 and all I want to get more sleep and refuse to crawl out of bed. More nights than not, where I do not get any more sleep. I should always just get up. I am frustrated by this.

I am very happy that Bella (one of our cats) stopped throwing up with the change of food. She was throwing up and so I kept buying hair ball formula, and was mixing it with regular food, then I went to straight hair ball. I gave up and so tired of puke and carpet stains/removal, so I her back on just regular food. The puking only happened ONCE in the last week. Where I was cleaning up 6 piles a day.

V is going to be 8 in less than two months, today we moved out a pair of size 7 jeans to his too small pile. He is getting too tall. He is already up to my armpit. (where I joked to him it was stinky)

I wish I was more self confident with fixing up our place. I am embarrassed by it.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Blue Apron - FAIL

This is NOT a sponsored post, this is our opinion of Blue Apron.

If you are not familiar with Blue Apron it is "A Better Way to Cook" (taken from their website). What it comes down to, they send you three meals for 2, including everything you need for about $60. It comes neatly packed with ice packs, and everything really arrived fresh. We ended up with three meals containing things we have never eaten (i.e. turnips, some green veggies from the beef lo mein recipe (spoiler alert, I threw the entire thing out including the recipe card) and some scary looking mushroom for the vegetarian jambalaya.) What I did like, was that you can pick which main meats you eat. Since we do not eat seafood/fish/veal/lamb, we were guaranteed to not have those, and we did not receive them.

The first dish we tried was Chicken and Sage biscuit pot pie.

Please note, the green pepper wasn't supposed to be there. This dish was good. It was much too sagey for me, next time I would leave it out. Also the amount of celery to the carrots was WAY too much. I would remove a celery stalk and replace it with 2 carrots. Also since this was our first experience with a turnip (I had to google it to see how to clean it) I would replace it with potato in the future, since we normally have them on hand. I was surprised how it has a mild taste.

The next meal we made was a beef lo mein. I thought I took pictures, but maybe in the heat of the moment of me tossing our supper into the garbage after cooking for 40 minutes..I might have deleted them. We tried and were SO grossed out. The veggies had a VERY strong, bitter flavor, and the beef was ground beef. Not steak like, which I was expecting. Not to mention, they didn't send us any garlic. It was a good thing I had that on hand. This experience of this recipe left me frightened to even TRY the last one of veggie jambalaya. I ended up chopping up the veggies and freezing them for other recipes and plan on using the canned veggies for chili. The scary mushroom thing...well..that got tossed.

The worst part of all of this was....I forgot to cancel in time for us not to have to get this again this week. So again we have a HUGE amount of food that we are not familiar with. Just to let you know, cancelling it NOT an easy task. You have to request an email.

So this week we have the following recipes to make: Three Cheese Cannelloni (that has weird things like butternut squash and kale in. I am thinking about making kale chips and roasted butternut squash and making a more traditional cannelloni or slicing the sheets of fresh pasta into strips.

The next is Beet, Goat Cheese and apple sliders..maybe you have missed it, but this is a MAJOR fail for us..I am sure you know we haven't eaten Beets...luckily I know my friend Ash loves them. We are to also make a fingerling potato salad with Frisee and Mint. UM..I know what mint is..but what is Frisee?? Should I again just roast the potatoes? (see a theme here?)

Lastly we have a Chole Chickpea Stew with Collard Greens and Naan bread. Guess what?! Yep you got it...there is NO way we will eat Collard Greens...they are bitter...anyone want them?? I hear it takes some getting used to. There is also coconut yogurt..??? What is that??!?!? Is it coconut flavored yogurt? OH FAIL over here. I might use greek plain instead.

If you noticed we bought three vegetarian meals for $60. Dude..seriously?!

So as you can see...our experience isn't the best. IF you can eat anything this might be good for you. We will NOT be doing this again. I would maybe try a different service after I checked the review more closely.

OK raise of hands..who wants which meal!?

Yeah I didn't think so. ;)

If you have tried Blue Apron was your experience like ours?

Have you tried a similar one from Peapod?

When was the last time you tossed an entire recipe, to scrounge the fridge to quickly feed a hangry child?