LIFE + STYLE BLOG

Friday, March 28, 2014

5 on Friday


One.
Last night we had a big thunderstorm with it came lots of hail. Living in the midwest hail is pretty common, as evidenced by our ability to quickly move our patio table and umbrella to the covered part of our porch. But you guys, this was the most I've ever seen. And it all fell within 2 minutes. 

Two.
Last weekend we went to dinner and Jack sat in a high chair at a restaurant for first time. Normally we keep him in his car seat (he's usually sleeping) but he was not having that anymore. This was the best picture I could get because he was so busy looking around at everyone and everything.

Three. 
All my tumblers were in the dishwasher so I did what any good mom would and took my 5 year old's Spiderman one to work instead.

Four.
Speaking of 5 year olds, this is how I found Ben playing Wii U the other night after his bath. 

Five. 
I'm in a spring cleaning mood and ready to tackle our entire house this weekend! Ok, that may be a little too ambitious. Maybe I'll just do the upstairs? Of course, Pinterest is full of ideas, tips, and lists.
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Happy Friday!
Wednesday, March 26, 2014

No Fuss Creamy Potato Soup {With Bacon}

I've been on the hunt for a perfect potato soup recipe for several years now. I've tried lots of different ones but the soups are always too watery or have a long list of ingredients. So you can imagine my excitement when I came across Jennifer's recipe for Potato Soup. I gave her recipe a few tweaks and my goodness this soup is good. And it's just as good the next day!

What You Need:
-16oz chopped frozen hash browns (not shredded) 
-2 cans Cream of Chicken
-2 1/2 soup cans of milk
-8oz container of French Onion dip
-1/2 stick of butter
-6 slices of bacon + the fat after cooking
-1 cup shredded cheddar cheese + extra for topping

What To Do:
1. In a large pot or dutch oven, melt the butter then add the milk, Cream of Chicken, and french onion dip. Stir until combined. 

2. Add the hash browns and shredded cheese. Stir until melted.

3. While the cheese is melting, cook the bacon until crispy, making sure to save the grease. Crumble the bacon and add it to the pot along with the bacon grease. I never said this soup was healthy :)

4. Give everything one more good stir and simmer on low for 20 minutes. 

5. Garnish with cheese, chives, extra bacon, or whatever else floats your boat. 

Enjoy!
Monday, March 24, 2014

Jack: 9 Month Update

You've officially been in the world for just about as long as you were on the inside my belly:) So much has changed in the past 9 months!

Let's start with all your big milestones. You are pulling up on everything including our legs if we're standing still. You can also stand without holding onto anything for several seconds at a time. Your biggest achievement this month though is that you are walking behind your lion push toy. You just crawl on over to it, pull yourself up, and take off walking and pushing that thing around. You're no longer army crawling and instead take off at lightening speed on all fours.

Your 2 top teeth finally poked through a few days after you turned 8 months. They're still not all the way in, but they make eating real food so much easier. You prefer table food over baby food but you really prefer real fruits and vegetables over the purred stuff. You're still obsessed with the Dole all natural mandarin oranges, but you also like peaches, bananas, and strawberries. We usually go the mixed vegetable route, but carrots and green beans seem to be a favorite. You also tried deli turkey meat and liked it pretty well. And just like your brother, you love cheese.

 You take 5, 6oz bottles per day, but we're increasing that to 7oz this month. You still wake up twice in the middle of the night and have a bottle each time. Sometimes you drink it all and other times you only drink half. 

Saturday night we started sleep training, but I'm still undecided about which method to use, night time weaning, etc. Since you've been eating in the middle of the night, I want to make sure we don't just quit cold turkey. I want to talk to your pediatrician before we decide to go full steam ahead with cry it out, but if waking up twice a night is the worst thing you do I can live with that!

Even though you're not sleeping through the night, naps are still going very well. You take two good naps during the day and sometimes you take a third little cat nap in the car on the way home from daycare.

You've moved up to size 3 Pampers and wear 9month, 6-12month, and 12month clothes. You're pretty long so pants, jammies, and one piece outfits usually require a size up.

You love to jabber and squeal all the time. Dada is still your favorite word to say but you also say mama, uh-oh, and hi/hey. You make several other sounds including ya ya, ga ga, ba ba, and lots where I have no idea what you're saying.

Last month you had a nasty little cold (thanks to the start of daycare) and this month you had a horrible cough, ear infection, fever, and more runny nose. One night your fever got to 102.9 and you had only one wet diaper all day so we took you to the ER to make sure you weren't dehydrated. You were pretty miserable and I felt so bad for you, but I sure loved all the cuddles. 

And last but not least, this month marked the beginning of some separation anxiety. We haven't really seen it at school yet, but definitely at home, even if I just leave a room. When I'm doing dishes or putting laundry away you follow me wherever I go like a little dog. I love that you love me so much but I think it hurts your daddy's feelings a little bit. You often crawl around him or through his legs to get to me:)

I can't wait to see what this next month has in store for you little man. Love you so much!
Friday, March 21, 2014

5 on Friday


Happy Friday Friends! Yesterday was the first day of Spring and it sure felt like it! There's something about warm, sunny weather that just seems to put everyone in a good mood. 

One.
Ben's kindergarden registration was last week and he was so excited to see the classroom but especially the toys :) He also finished soccer lessons and he asks me every day when he can do them again. 

Two.
Ever since seeing this on Pinterest I've been thinking about making this beef enchilada dip. Doesn't it look so good! The best part is you probably have all the ingredients you need already on hand.

Three.
Last week I posted about my new GroopDealz scarf and not long after it arrived my necklace was also waiting for me.

Four.
I've been obsessed with GAP's kids clothes lately and I've found some great deals for both boys. We're talking $7 jeans! 
All images from GAP website

Five.
I can't stop thinking about and watching the news coverage on the missing Malaysian plane. The situation is absolutely heartbreaking. I pray that the families will get answers to their questions and find peace in whatever the outcome may be.

Have a wonderful weekend!
Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Weekend Recap

I wish I could say our entire weekend was fantastic, but poor little Jack just can't get over being sick. He still had a little bit of a fever so my mom watched him yesterday and today just to make sure he was on the mend.

Friday night I went to a trivia night for an animal shelter. 

Saturday morning I took Jack to the doctor after he ran a fever all night long and hardly slept. He ended up having an ear infection and we started him on antibiotics. He was my little cuddle bug all day long. 

On Sunday Ben went to a Frozen themed birthday party at The Little Gym.

We ended the weekend installing the baby gate and it was early bed times for everyone.


How was your weekend?

Monday, March 17, 2014

My Little Leprechauns

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Friday, March 14, 2014

5 on Friday


I know I complained about how February dragged on but March needs to slow the heck down. I can't believe the month is almost half over already.

One.
Monday and Tuesday were gorgeous with temps in the 80's. After making the kids stay inside Monday night (still getting over this cough) I toughed it out on Tuesday to enjoy the beautiful weather. Ben ate Orange Leaf and played soccer outside while Jack and I relaxed on a blanket and watched him play. 
And in true Missouri fashion, it snowed yesterday morning.

Two.
Natalie over at Designer Bags and Dirty Diapers posted this adorable bathing suit. I don't know that I would pay $150 for a suit, but it might just be worth it. I mean, look at that bow!

And speaking of bathing suits, I'm sure you all have heard about the Target photoshopping disaster. If not, take a look.

This E! article is by far my favorite commentary of the whole debacle. My two favorite quotes from the author include:
"The last question you should be asking yourself when you're cruising Target's website and looking at pictures of the models showcasing the clothes is: "Where is her vagina?"

"Girl, there are spikes coming out of your skin! Get that checked out. What's the prognosis for jagged edges popping out of your body?"

Three.
A few weeks ago I posted about a scarf I ordered off Groop Dealz. It  finally came and although I wish it was a little thicker and chunkier, I love the color and the fact that it's an infinity scarf.

I also tried on this scarf my friend Julie got me. I love the colors and it will be perfect in the Spring.

Four.
Getting all the salt, grime, and snow off of your car feels amazing. You know what's not amazing? The person in front of us who thought it was a good idea to go through the carwash with a huge piece of equipment in his truck bed that got tangled in the machine causing the line of 20 cars behind him to back up even more.

Five.
Tonight I'm headed to a trivia fundraiser for a local no kill animal shelter. I'm looking forward to having a few cocktails and sharing my knowledge of useless crap.

Happy Friday!
Thursday, March 13, 2014

Sick & A St. Patty's Link Up

Jack and I have been under the weather for the past week now. Last Friday I took him to the Dr. to rule out croup after he was up every hour Thursday night coughing and sounding like a barking dog when he cried. 

Thankfully it's just an upper respiratory virus and he's on the mend, but I'm still hacking away. I know I'm annoying everyone around me by coughing and at this point I'm even annoying myself. I started a Z-Pack on Monday so I'm hoping what I have is some sort of bacterial thing and will go away. I'm tired of having to take my nightly shot of NyQuil. Really. We lost the measuring cup so I take it out of a shot glass. Cheers to the Quil!

The worst part of this cold is that I missed out on seeing my best friend and her sweet little nuggets this weekend.

And even though I'm late on getting this posted, I'm participating in a little St. Patty's recipe link-up with Natasha. I found this SUPER easy recipe on Pinterest and plan to make these this weekend along with my blog partners recipe.
Friday, March 7, 2014

5 on Friday


Happy first 5 on Friday in March!

One.
I can't believe Daylight Savings is this weekend. Don't get me wrong, I love the extra daylight, but when you have kids time change can be the devil. Obviously whoever had this brilliant idea wasn't a parent. 

Two.
When Greek yogurt first became really popular several years ago I never jumped on the bandwagon. It didn't help that people compared the plain flavor to sour cream. After several recommendations from friends I started eating the strawberry or pomegranate flavor from Chobani and really liked it so when I saw a commercial for Yoplait's 100 Greek yogurt I decided to give it a shot. I really like the variety of different flavors and there was no weird aftertaste. 

Three.
I started using mousse in Jack's hair and spiking in the front just a little bit. I love how cute he looks but it also makes him look so much bigger.

Four.
A month ago I bought this military style jacket but just now got around to wearing it last. It's something I would normally shy away from, but I'm proud of myself for stepping outside of my comfort zone. And yes, I have to find a better place to take pictures.

//Five//
This weekend my best friend Meghan is coming into town and I can't wait to see her! She has an adorable little boy who is 2 and a precious baby girl who is a few months younger than Jack. I think Ben is just as excited as I am to have them over and play. 
(Both knocked up at a friends wedding last April)


Have a wonderful weekend friends!
Thursday, March 6, 2014

Day in Our Life

I always enjoy reading these types of posts so here's a typical weekday in our house.

6:08am: I hit snooze once then force myself to get into the shower.

6:25am: Get dressed for work and put moisturizer on my face, but I don't do my hair or makeup yet. I head into Ben's room and wake him up. 

6:30am: Ben wakes up and asks if it's a stay home day. I usually try to wake him up around 6:30am on school days because he's more likely to take a nap at school if I do:)

6:40am: Ben lays on the couch and watches an episode of Scooby Doo while I fix us breakfast. His preschool serves breakfast so sometimes he eats at home and sometimes he eats at school. He's also been known to eat twice :) 

6:50am: Jack is babbling away in his crib and Ben goes in to get him. Almost every morning Ben climbs in the crib and they just lay together and laugh. It's my favorite part of the morning. After a few minutes of brother time, I come in and get Jack out, change his diaper, and get his breakfast ready.

7:00am: Jack eats some puffs and banana while Ben and I sit next to him and eat our breakfast. While the boys finish eating, I blow dry my hair and do my makeup.

7:10am: The boys finish eating, Jack gets a quick wipe down, and then we go into Jack's room where the boys for a little bit. Ben reads Jack a book while I respond to some work emails since I will be traveling for clients and won't have a chance to later. 

7:30am: I'm done with my emails and play with the boys for a little while, then it's time to get them dressed and ready for school. I lay out Ben's clothes and he dresses himself while I wrestle and wrangle Jack trying to get him to hold still long enough for me to throw on his clothes.

7:55am: We're all dressed and ready to go. We take one last picture in which Ben demands his Lego be in, before we head out the door.

8:10am: I drop the boys of at school and hit for a 2 1/2 hours drive to see clients. Sometimes having quiet time by myself to drive is relaxing and sometimes I get bored to death.

8:10am-5:45pm: Client time 

5:45pm: I get back in town in just enough time to pick boys up the boys from school. 

6:00pm: We're back home and J entertains the boys while I get dinner ready. This night we had ribs that I had prepared the day before and J just had to throw them in the oven. I also heat up a can of baked beans, make a quick salad, and get the oranges and pineapple out of the fridge. 

6:25: Dinner's ready and we all sit down at the table to eat. Ben eats the salad, beans, and fruit. We make him try the ribs, but he's not a fan. Jack has more puffs, squash, a little oatmeal cereal (which he hates) and an entire container of Dole's all natural mandarin oranges fruit cups. He loves these oranges.  

6:45pm: Everyone's done eating and I immediately take Jack to the bath since he's covered in food. J gets Ben's shower started and starts cleaning up the kitchen. Ben is old enough to wash himself and J checks to make sure he's actually clean and gets all the soap off. 

7:00pm. I get Jack out of the bath and lather him in lotion, brush his hair, and put on his pjs. He hangs out on the couch with J and looks at pictures of animals while Ben finishes up his shower and I pick up around the house. 

7:20pm: Ben's out of the shower and puts his pajamas on. I make Jack's bottle and then take him to his room where I feed and rock him. While I'm putting Jack to bed, J and Ben have their special time together. This night they played on the Wii U, but hide and seek is also a favorite.

7:35pm: Jack is asleep so I watch the boys play. 

7:45pm, 8:00pm, 8:15pm: Jack is restless tonight since he took a late nap at school. At about 8:15pm he finally settles down and drifts off to sleep.

8:30pm: It's time for Ben to go to bed and he says goodnight to daddy, gets a drink of water, brushes his teeth, and picks out a book to read. We climb into his bed and read a chapter about Iron Man from this superhero book my sister got him for his birthday. He loves this book and we have read it every night since his birthday in January. I love this time together where it's just the two of us.

8:45pm: I turn on Ben's music and we pray. He always wants me to pray first and then his pray ends up pretty similar to mine. This night he added "thank you for letting me play Wii," and "thanks for helping my brother stop crying." He ends his prayer with "I love you God." After a big hug and kiss, it's lights out.

8:50pm: I finish picking up around the house and start a load of laundry. I catch up on Facebook and read some blogs and J goes to his office downstairs to work for a couple of hours. On nights he doesn't work, we hang out on the couch together.

9:50pm: I turn off most of the lights around the house, drink a glass of water, brush my teeth, and head to bed. I watch a little bit of tv and listen to Jack toss and turn on the baby monitor, but he doesn't get up. I usually put on something that I can fall asleep to like Everybody Loves Raymond or King of Queens.

11:30pm: Like clockwork, Jack is up and ready for a bottle. He eats and I change his diaper, then it's back to bed for both of us.

3:30am: Jack's up for the second and last time of the night. J is a total night owl and just got done working so since he's up, he takes care of Jack and I go back to sleep.

6:10am: Wake up for the day and do it all over again:)