LIFE + STYLE BLOG

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Granny Betty's Chicken Salad Sandwiches

Before making this recipe for chicken salad sandwich, I would never ever eat them. Something about canned chicken, that smelled like tuna...I just couldn't. But this chicken salad sandwich is quite possible one of my top 5 favorite foods. It's that good. 

This recipe comes from my best friend's granny whose name was, you guessed it, Betty. I asked granny for her recipe and you can imagine my hesitation when she replied with directions that included "Oh a little of this and a little of that." I need measurements Betty! Although I was able to nail down the exact ingredients, the exact measurements are still a secret, but lucky for all of us it's pretty hard to mess this up. 

What You Need:
-1 Rotisserie chicken. This is key. Say it with me, no canned chicken.
-Mayo
-Miracle Whip (Don't be afraid if you don't like it. I don't, but it works in this recipe)
-Celery Seed
-Chopped Walnuts
-Dollar sandwich rolls/Sandwich rounds 

What To Do:

1. Start by shredding then chopping the chicken. I only used the white meat but use the whole darn thing if you want.

2. Place the chopped chicken in a bowl, then add equal parts mayo and miracle whip. Again, no exact measurements on this, but you can handle it. Smart with small amounts and if you like a more creamy consistency, add more. I usually start with 1/4 cup of each to begin with and go from there.

3. Add 2 tbsps of finely chopped walnuts and mix into the chicken. Add more if you like more of a crunch.

4. Finally, add 1/2 tsp celery seed, mix thoroughly, then refrigerate the chicken salad for at least one hour. I think it tastes even better the next day.

Serve on rolls and enjoy!
Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Blessing Bags (Teaching Your Child to Give Back)

There are a lot of things I wish for my children. At the top of that list is that they are loving, compassionate, and kind human beings. It's important to me that they understand what a wonderful and privileged life they have and that not everyone lives like we do.

It's never too early to teach your children to think about others and how they can give back. When Ben started whining about Disney World and why we couldn't go back every year, I explained to him that some kids never get the chance to go. In his innocent 4 year old little mind, he just couldn't comprehend why that was. And yet another teachable moment occurred. In an effort to teach Ben about helping others who have less or sometimes nothing at all, we created Blessing Bags.

I had a huge tub of samples and travel size toiletries that were just taking up space under the sink so we used these but you could also purchase travel size items from the store. 

We separated the items into girl and boy piles and Ben labeled each bag accordingly.

Next we filled each bags with the toiletries. I tried to make sure each one had at least a container of shampoo, body wash, deodorant, toothpaste, and feminine hygiene products for the girls.

To make them a little more personal, Ben colored pictures and stuck those in the bags too.

We also added some cracker packs and Capri Suns. You could use any snacks or drinks that have long expiration dates. In the end, I think we made 4 boy bags and 3 girl ones. 

We keep these bags in our car and if we see a person needing help, we give them a bag. I realize that not everyone with a sign is homeless or maybe the person just wants money, but I'm choosing to teach my child that we help and give, without judgement. Maybe the person will throw the bag away when we drive off or maybe they will eat the food and use the deodorant. And just maybe they will see the hand drawn Spiderman picture by a 4 year old and it will make them feel loved and cared about. Ben will have his whole life to become jaded by the world but for now, we just give.

*A note about safety: We never get out of the car to give the bags out. I roll down the window and hand it to the person, but always during the day and only in areas where there are lots of other cars or people around (usually stopped at a traffic light). It's great to give, but safety is always important. 
Friday, October 25, 2013

5 on Friday

I missed 5 on Friday last week and I'm so glad to be back!


One.
I got my hair done last week and went darker and shorter. J loves it, I love it, and it is so much easier and faster to style. 

Two.
This picture makes me SO happy. Ben is such a great big brother!

Three.
A few weekends ago we went a pumpkin patch and took the obligatory fall family photo. I can't wait to go again next year and see just how much the boys will have changed.

Four.
It doesn't get much better than a sleeping baby in footy pajamas.

Five.
I just can't deal with this. On Wednesday it started snowing and sleeting while I was on my way to a client's house. That better not happen again anytime soon.


We have a couple fun things going on this weekend including a basketball game, pumpkin carving, and the Homecoming parade! 

Hope you all have a fabulous weekend!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Jack: 4 Month Update

My sweet Jack. Monday you turned 4 months old. Before I know it you will be 6 months, then a year, and then I'll be doing a big ugly cry in the corner.

This month brought with it your first little illness and sick visit to the doctor. You broke out in a rash/bumps on your body, but after a dose of antibiotics and a switch to Aveeno baby products your skin cleared right up! At the doctor's visit you weighed 13.4  pounds which is up 3 pounds since your last weigh in! We will know your official 4 month weight at your well child check up next week.

You're in size 1 diapers during the day and size 2 at night since you were consistently leaking through the 1's. We still have a lot of size 1's left, but I'm thinking we may have to go ahead and move you up to the 2's exculsively. You're in 3 month, 3-6 month, and some 6 month clothing depending on the brand. There were A LOT of 3 month outfits that you never wore or only wore once before you outgrew them.

You continue to be the most smiley baby I have ever met. All I have to do is look at you and you grin from ear to ear. It melts my heart! For the most part you wake up in a great mood and just lay and talk to yourself in the crib until I come get you. When I look down at you in the crib you get the BIGGEST smile on your face and your brother is usually right behind me if he hasn't already beat me to your crib.

You eat every 3 hours and take 5 ounces at a time. Before bed you take a 6 ounce bottle. You had been sleeping great and only waking up once in the night, but lately you've been getting up every couple of hours. Although it could be worse, I hope you go back to sleeping all night. I know some babies go through a 4 month sleep regression so hopefully this is short lived. Even with waking up in the middle of the night I really can't complain since you still go to bed around 6:45pm, wake up to eat, and go right back to sleep. You usually sleep until 7:45-8:00am or until big brother starts being extra noisy:)

Your naps very day to day. Sometimes you only take 30 minute cat naps and other days you nap for a couple of hours. When your Meemaw watches you, you seem to take better naps than you do on the two days a week you go to daycare.

The biggest accomplishment this month is that you are finally sleeping in your own crib!And you longer have to be swaddled! I prepared myself for several sleepless nights when we made this transition, but you took it like a champ and I think you are glad to be free from your baby straight jacket.

You still love bath time, but as soon as you get out you know that it's jammies, bottle, and bed. If I don't dry you off fast enough you get mad quickly. You also do this little half whine, half grunt sound in the middle of the night when you're hungry. It makes me laugh out loud.

This must be the month of new things because all of a sudden you also decided you love a pacifier. You only like the Mam brand and I love rocking you and watching your little lips move. You've mastered the front to back roll so well that every time I try to do tummy time with you you roll right over. You're still working on rolling from back to tummy and the other day you were all the way on your side and almost had it. You've also started sitting in your Bumbo seat for little bits of time.

You make all kinds of new sounds including "mmmm" and I swear it sounds like mommy. I always knew you were a genius:) Just in case that's not what you're saying, we'll keep working on it.

I love you more than you will ever know.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Fall Staples

I found this cute clothing checklist, but of course I can't remember where. This is such a great idea for anyone looking for classics or to build their wardrobe.

I have a lot of these essentials but still need a few things like a trench coat, straw hat, and a colorful skinny belt. I also don't have a black bikini or cotton mini, but let's face it, 3 months after having a baby is not the time to be adding these to my closet.

What do you need to complete your classic essentials?
Friday, October 11, 2013

5 on Friday


This week was a crazy one! The weekend will be a much needed break with nothing on our calendar except the pumpkin patch on Sunday. As usual, I'm linking up with Carolina Charm.

One.
Don't forget to enter my GIVEAWAY! This awesome diffuser and earrings are up for grabs!

Two.
I went to a work dinner last night hosted by an insurance company that we contract with. The dinner was great, but the dessert was even better. 

Three.
Kate over at Seriously Kate nominated me for the Sunshine Award earlier this week and I will be answering her questions in a post next week. If you haven't you need to check out her blog. She is one of the sweetest people and her posts always leave me saying, "I can totally relate!"

Four.
I-70 runs through our city and a busy exit and intersection off of I-70 is closed for the next couple of days for construciton. This exit also happens to be the exit to our mall, my work, and the boy's daycare. I can't wait to join all the other thousands of people or so this morning trying to find an alternate route.

Five. 
"Did you say the government looks like they might finally be reaching a solution to the shutdown?"

"Hoorayyyy!" 

Happy Friday!
Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Someone's Finally Sleeping

In his crib. 

After 3 months of sleeping in the swing, I finally moved Jack to his crib this weekend. And it wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be.  Now before you get all safety police, he was perfectly safe in the swing. Our swing is very deep and has the option to rock side to side which is what we used. He wasn't going anywhere and it allowed all of us to get some sleep these past couple of months. 

The next thing we're going to tackle is weaning the swaddle. I think it's past time since this is what I'm waking up to. I wrap that sucker tight and he's still busting out. And proud of it:)

If you have any tips for getting your baby to sleep without the swaddle let me know!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

A Birthday Surprise

Apparently I turned 50 on my birthday. 

Too bad J is only 32. Looks like we won't be taking advantage of that free spouse/partner membership. I think I look pretty good for 50.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Catching Up & Our First Fall Festival

How was everyone's weekend? Although ours was pretty productive, it still feels like I got nothing done when I look at my to do list. Does this happen to anyone else? 

Last week Ben had his 4 year Well Child check-up and they decided to go ahead and give him his kindergarten shots as well as the flu shot. He was not happy. And along with the shots came a nice little fever that afternoon. 102.8 to be exact. He ended up staying home with J on Thursday and we though he was back to his squirrelly, fever free self. Wouldn't you know I got a call from his school Friday afternoon that he had a fever again. Despite the fever he seemed to be feeling fine so we made the decision to go ahead and go to our first fall festival of the season. I'm so glad we did because he never had any other symptoms and the fever never returned. And despite the fever, of course I will continue to vaccinate. 

The Fun Fest is held at my old elementary school and they have lots of games and activities for kids. Ben's loved running the bases at the cake walk.

Getting his hair spray painted was his absolute favorite part!

While Ben played games, Jack did what he does best. Sucked on his fingers and smiled at people.

Saturday was cold and rainy so we spent the day just hanging out at home. Ben tattled to J at least 5 times that I said we were staying home all day. This kid loves to be busy and apparently a trip to the grocery store and bank earlier that morning wasn't enough adventure. 

By Sunday morning Ben was dying to get out of the house so we stopped by Chuck E. Cheese.

After a gallon of sanitizer, a hot shower, and dinner, we all went to bed early. And germ free.

Friday, October 4, 2013

5 on Friday


One.
I had such a great birthday. The girls at work made having to be at work on your birthday not so bad. I was treated to a hibachi lunch and got the cutest scarf, some gift cards, new fall decor, and some of Essie's new fall nail colors. I was spoiled! That night J and I went to a nice dinner and then came home to open presents with the boys. My sister got me a gift card for a manicure, and my mom got me new the Michael Kors perfume.

 J and the boys totally surprised me and got me the Canon PowerShot SX510 HS. I haven't really played around with it yet, but I'm sure I will love it. The zoom is awesome and it's not as big as our old Canon which will make it so much easier to carry around.

Two.
Baby Gap makes the most adorable little baby pants. Jack was rocking these this week and they are so soft. If only it was acceptable for adults to wear elastic pants all day.

Three.
I really want to recreate this dessert sometime this fall.

Four.
I'm going to be hosting a giveaway next week so be sure to check back and enter! I'm also participating in a Fall blog swap so I'll be sharing what things I sent and what I received!

Five.
So simple and true.

Have a wonderful weekend!