LIFE + STYLE BLOG

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving

I'm going take a break from blogging for the rest of the week to spend time with my family and friends. I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with lots of love, thanks, and delicious food. 

Monday, November 24, 2014

Weekend Recap

Let's start off with the best news ever...Jack's biopsy came back normal! Praise the Lord. Seriously. While we were waiting in radiology there was a young girl hooked up to an IV and she was missing most of her hair. That'll make you feel real grateful real fast.

This weekend we hung out at home and recovered from the stressful week. Jack was pretty pooped Friday night, but I didn't mind the extra snuggles one bit.

This weekend I also had my first red cup of the season.

After dragging the popcorn out of the pantry several times, I finally caved and let Jack eat popcorn at 10:00 on a Sunday morning. Ben was so sweet and grabbed his stool so Jack could watch it pop. It's these moments that I try to remember when they are running around the house fighting like crazy people over a toy.

Sunday afternoon we went to our niece's Frozen themed birthday party. That sparkly blur is the best picture I could get of the birthday princess. 

Here's to a productive Monday!!!

Linking up with Biana & Leeann
Thursday, November 20, 2014

Deluxe Breakfast Casserole

This warm and hearty casserole is sure to hold you over until lunch time and may even leave you wanting the leftovers for every meal!

What You Need:
-1 can Crescent Rolls (or crescent roll sheet)
-2 tbsp butter
-16 oz sausage 
-1 green pepper, chopped
-1/2 small sweet onion, chopped
-1 cup chopped hash browns
-1 cup Cheddar or American Cheese
-salt & pepper to taste

What To Do:
1. Preheat your oven to 350F degrees. While oven is preheating, cook the sausage thoroughly and drain. 
2. In a skillet, melt the butter and sauté the chopped pepper and onion.
3. Once the vegetables become tender, add the hash browns and cook on low for 5 minutes, just until the hash browns begin to soften. 

4. Place the crescent rolls in a greased 9x13 inch pan and top with the sausage. 
5. Add the vegetable-hash brown mixture and top with cheese. I prefer American cheese with breakfast food (eggs, casseroles, etc) and we only had slices so that's what I used. You could use shredded Cheddar if you prefer and I think Swiss would be good as well.

6. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes and enjoy!
Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Jack's Surgery Update

Thank you to everyone who emailed, sent a text, or called the last couple of days to check on Jack!

His surgery ended up starting a little later than expected but he did great and we will know the results of the biopsy on Friday. He had a little drain in his check and as well as some sutures and those will come out on Friday as well.

For now he's back to his happy, smiling self, and of course eating:)
Monday, November 17, 2014

Weekend Recap

This weekend was one of those weekends that I want to bottle up and freeze in time. It was the perfect amount of relaxation and productivity not to mention it snowed just enough to coat everything in a thin blanket of white.

My work got tickets to the MU Basketball game on Friday night so we cheered on the Tigers and Ben ended up falling asleep once things started going downhill.

The rest of the weekend was spent baking, DIY-ing, and staying warm by the fire place. 

If you get a chance could you say a little prayer for our sweet Jack tomorrow? He has had a swollen lymph node near his jaw for a few weeks now and it's not gotten better. He is having surgery tomorrow to check it out and make sure it's not something serious. We have the top pediatric surgeon performing the surgery, but it's still nerve racking since they have to put him under. Say a little prayer that the results will turn out fine and that I won't totally loose it when they take him back to the OR.


Linking up with Biana & Leeann
Friday, November 14, 2014

5 on Friday

Happy Friday! Thankfully this week went by fast and we've got a pretty fun weekend planned. Wherever you are and whatever you do, I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

One.
If you look really close you'll see little specks of snow. Thursday was the first snow of the year and although it didn't accumulate I couldn't believe it. It's currently 16 degrees out now and I'm wondering where in the heck did Fall go?

Two.
Have you all started Christmas shopping? I've gotten a few things here and there so my goal this weekend is to take inventory of what I have and what I still need to get. 

Three.
This picture makes me so happy. I especially love the field of floating popsicle sticks. 

Four.
Did anyone else think last night's Scandal was supposed to be the season finale? I'm so glad it wasn't though because I would have been throughly disappointed. And I've decided I'm officially on Team Jake.

Five.
Jack is obsessed with Siri and for a 16 month old he can navigate my iPhone pretty well. He asks her question and question because he loves hearing her voice so I got smart and asked her to tell me a story. That works perfectly until I asked to do it again the next day and apparently she wasn't feeling it. Come on Siri, if my baby wants to hear you tell a story you better tell a story. 


Linking up with the ladies
Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Kansas City Zoo

Normally when we make a trip to the zoo we head to St. Louis. It's the zoo I always went to growing up, it's big without being too big, and it's free. During our last visit, the zoo was under a lot of construction which really limited what animals we got to see.

A few weekends ago we had the most perfect weather so the kids and I decided to try out the Kansas City Zoo. The KC Zoo was recently remodeled and had a lot of new exhibits including Polar Bears. This zoo is HUGE and there is a lot of walking. You can tell the zoo was built around the natural rolling hills, rivers, lakes, etc. There is a ski lift ride over "Africa" as well as a boat ride around the lake, but those weren't open while we were there. Due to it's size, the zoo does offer a tram for a small cost and next time I would definitely take advantage of that.

The boys had a blast, especially Jack, who is obsessed with animals right now although he wasn't quite sure what to think of that penguin.

Thank goodness he loved the real ones.

Ben loved pushing Jack around in the stroller.
 

We were all exhausted by the end of the day but I'm so glad we went before the colder temperatures settled in.

And in case you are ever in the Midwest and debating about which zoo to visit, here's my comparison of them both. I don't really have a preference for one over the other and no matter which zoo you choose, you're sure to have a great time!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

5 Ingredient Stuffed Peppers

These stuffed peppers are the perfect weeknight meal and they can also be prepared ahead of time and then popped in the oven when you're ready to eat. This recipe makes 2 peppers but double it if you need more.

What You Need:
-2 green peppers
-1/2 lb ground beef
-2 cups rice
-12 oz (1/2 jar) Preggo's Chunky Garden Combo spaghetti sauce 
-1/2 cup (or more if you like cheese) shredded mozzarella cheese

What To Do:
1. Pre-heat the oven to 425F degrees. In a large skillet, cook the beef until done.
2. While the beef is browning, cook the rice according to the directions on the package. I use minute rice. It cuts down on the overall cooking time and tastes just as good as the 20 minute stuff. 
3. Once the rice is cooked, add it to the hamburger and stir in sauce and 1/4 cup of the mozzarella cheese. Simmer until cheese is melted.
4. Wash the peppers and are remove the inside including the seeds.
5. Place the mixture inside the peppers, pressing it all the way down. Top with the remaining 1/4 cup of cheese.
6. Fill a small baking dish with a few tablespoons of water and stand the peppers up in the dish. Cover with foil and bake for 15-20 minutes or until the peppers are tender. 

Enjoy!


Linking up with Emily& Kate for Tuesday's Recipe Swap.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Weekend Recap

We're enjoying a 70 degree day here but 30 degree weather is supposed to roll through this week and I just don't know if I'm ready. I saw that parts of Minnesota are supposed to get 16 inches of snow this weekend. 

Friday afternoon I went to the mall to find a dress for a wedding we attend Saturday night. The wedding was one of J's clients so I wanted something elegant and not too edgy or sexy. Why is it when you're looking for something specific you can never find it. Ugh.

I ended up going with the dress on the left and of course I found it at the last store I looked.

Friday night after Jack went to bed Ben, J, and I rented Maleficent and Angelina was perfect for this role. It reminded me a lot of the musical Wicked except with Sleeping Beauty instead of Wizard of Oz. In case you're debating letting your younger kids see the movie, Ben is 5 and didn't find the movie scary at all.

Saturday was our usual grocery shopping and cleaning followed by lunch with my in-laws who took the boys home with them for the night so J and I could go to a wedding. Technically it wasn't actually the wedding just the reception. The couple got married out of state and then had the reception back home. If this wasn't one of J's client I would have been snapping lots of pictures. There was a sushi bar, ice sculpture with oysters, shrimp, and lobster, and a martini ice sculpture where the martini flowed through the ice. To top it all off, there were fireworks synchronized to music which was beautiful.

Before the boys came home Sunday morning I whipped up a batch of mini Vanilla Poppyseed Bread loaves adapted from Kaitlin. They were delicious and I love anything mini sized. I used vanilla extract instead of almond but I'm thinking you could even do lemon. 

We just hung out at home on Sunday and I made stuffed green peppers for dinner.


How was your weekend?


Linking up with Biana for Weekending

Friday, November 7, 2014

5 on Friday

Linking up with the usual ladies for 5 on Friday. 


One.
Jack's new thing in the morning is to sit on the counter next to me while I make breakfast. 

Two.
My dad is the only one in our family who likes sweet potatoes which means no one ever makes them for Thanksgiving. This year I want to make him (and my very first) sweet potato casserole. I've found a few recipes on Pinterest but would love to see which ones you have. 

Three.
Ben got this certificate yesterday at school. They are teaching all the kindergartener's to tie their shoes and he mastered it in one day. Proud mamma moment. Apparently they are teaching the kids to tie them without using the bunny ears method. Google "shoe tying" and you'll be surprised by the number of ways you can tie a shoe.

Four.
I need this bedspread for the holiday season. Obsessed does not even begin to describe how much I love it.

Five.
"Because I Love You" flowers from my husband. I know some women think flowers are a waste of money but I love them no matter how unpractical they may be.

Happy Friday Friends!