Nighty Night

Guess WHAT? Isla was in bed by 7:30 tonight and Jack by 8:00. Wahooo… about to pour myself a glass of wine. Seriously though, we’ve been majorly slacking on bedtimes lately and both kids have been a mess. Jack is impossible to wake up in the mornings and Isla has been throwing tantrum after tantrum. Late afternoons are not pretty around here.

I actually made tonight’s dinner yesterday and then ended up scrapping it to go eat Tex-Mex with my parents. I found this packet of slow cooker apple bourbon sauce at Target and decided to give it a try:

Yesterday morning I layered a sliced onion in the bottom of the crock pot, then added a 3lb pork butt (hehe) and the sauce. Cooked on low for 8 hours, then removed the pork, shredded the meat and added it back to the crock pot.

I bought slider buns for pulled pork sliders, but I ended up making a BBQ pork quesadilla instead. Just mixed the meat with a little Stubb’s and sandwiched it between 2 low-carb tortillas with some shredded cheddar:

I honestly wasn’t a huge fan of the Campbell’s sauce. It’s a good concept but once the pork cooks down and releases all of its juice (ok, fat), the sauce ends up really watered down. The Stubb’s saved the day though.

OK off to take advantage of this quiet house! We have a busy day tomorrow- meet the teacher for Isla and parent orientation for me.

Posted in September 2015 | Leave a comment

Pakpao

This morning Isla and I finally made it to Costco. I think our last trip was in July, which is CRAZY given our usual every week-2 week frequency. Anyway, you know I stocked up. Seriously Costco is such a lifesaver when it comes to lunches and snacks. I bought Jack these little snack trays with carrots, broccoli, hummus and cheese. So much better than his usual after school Pirate’s Booty & fruit snack binge. Also- 4 lbs of organic grapes for less than $8??! And of course our usual boxed chocolate milks, applesauce, Apothic red blend (hey, mommy needs a treat too), broccoli, feta, hearts of palm, mango slices and lord knows what else. It was a lot.

After that trek we met Brian for lunch at a new Thai restaurant that just opened near our house, Pakpao. It was pretty packed for it being their first week open, and I was a little nervous bringing Isla in once I saw the business lunch crowd. But the staff was really sweet and they even have a kids menu (only a couple of items were available but more will be added soon). I didn’t think Isla would eat either of the kid options- pad thai or grilled chicken- so she ended up with an order of roti and a bowl of jasmine rice. That girl is just one giant carb.

Brian and I started with the Thai beef jerky. Sounds weird but it was amazing- little slices of salty seasoned beef that were crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. Completely addictive.

I was boring and ordered the chicken pad thai, which was good. Lots of sauce.

Brian had the pad se ew. It wasn’t as sweet as other places we’ve tried, but I liked the slices of broccolini (I think that’s what it was).

I’m excited to give this place a try once the full menu is available. I saw some items online that weren’t on the menu today, so I’m assuming that those are coming. But definitely worth a try if you’re in the area- always excited about new local restaurants!

Posted in September 2015 | Leave a comment

Taco Monday

Today flew by, which was a nice surprise for a Monday. We stayed pretty busy. This morning Isla and I headed to playgroup, then errands/lunch, then I attempted to put her down for a nap before it was time to go get Jack. Haha. Hilarious. She basically just plays in her bed for 10 minutes, climbs out, comes downstairs and tells me she’s not tired and wants to watch TV. AND I LET HER. Because I’m weak and seriously just want 10 quiet minutes to read blogs on my iPad. Some days I have the energy to escort her back upstairs 200 times, but today was not one of those days… so we watched Tangled instead.

By some miracle I was actually able to get both kids in for back to back haircuts with Miss Ginger today. She was booked out until late September for after school appointments, but I just happened to check online late last night and there were openings at 3:30 and 3:45. Hallelujah! Jack got a trim and Isla just had her length evened out.

(Brian swears he can’t tell that they even had haircuts. Awesome.)

For dinner tonight I made turkey tacos. I couldn’t decide between soft or crispy, so I ended up buying these adorable mini soft flour tortilla “boats” and some crispy corn flats. The flats were stale as all get-out, but that may be because I forgot to heat them up. Live and learn. On the side we had black bean & corn salad (black beans, corn, minced red onion, olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic powder, cumin and salt) and refried beans. Oh and I used a pouch of Frontera taco sauce instead of powdered seasoning on the ground turkey.

Lots of turkey leftover so looks like we may be having taco salads later this week!

Posted in August 2015 | 2 Comments

Kid Stuff

Holla! I ended last week really frazzled. Not enough sleep in general, then I was up until after midnight on Thursday (after taking the kids to the pool for swimming/dinner) working on a project for Jack’s class.

And so it begins. Don’t get me wrong, I love doing crafty things, but I’m also really bad about procrastinating. So what could have been fun had I started on, say, Tuesday, ended up being really stressful at 10pm on Thursday. Lesson learned. Ok, probably not.

We had a fun weekend! Brian had some friends over to play poker on Friday night so I retired to my bedroom to read magazines and slather on gratifyingly disgusting skincare products (Biore strips FTW!). Then on Saturday we headed to Jack’s first soccer game of the season. We have both kids in soccer this fall so it should be interesting to see how that all plays out. On Saturday night we headed to Zach and Laura’s to celebrate Owen’s 2nd bday:

He kept singing, “Happy birthday to Owen…” while he ate his cake. Love that sweet boy.

Let’s see… what else? We had lunch at Pie Five today. I love that place. I can have my own pizza with all my weird toppings and the kids can have their plain old cheese and Brian can have his Buffalo chicken pizza. Everybody’s happy. Oh and they gave the kids slap bracelets today and said that if we bring the bracelets back between 9/7-9/13 (as many times as you want) then the kids would get a free meal with the purchase of an adult pizza.

My parents took the kids this afternoon, which was AWESOME because I was able to get a bunch of stuff done around here and actually feel ready for the week for a change. Brian ended up going into work, but I did dishes, cleaned out the fridge and pantry, did laundry, meal planned and ran to Target for groceries. My parents fed (and bathed!!) the kids, so I just handled dinner for the two of us. Is it ironic that tonight’s grown-up dinner looks like what my kids eat 90% of the time?

Hot dog (with mustard and tons of McClure’s relish- which is THE BOMB), mac and cheese and grapes. And it was delicious. I should plan lazy meals more often.

Hope everyone had a great weekend! I had a moment of temporary insanity last week and signed myself up for a 5:30am boot camp that starts next week. HAHAHA. So this week’s goal is to get back to a normal bedtime before that torture begins.

Posted in August 2015 | Leave a comment

Tiny Dancer

Today was Isla’s first ballet class at her new studio. Last year we enrolled her in a studio that was about 10-15 minutes from our (old) house, because it was one of the only places that offered a class for 2 year old’s. Now that she’s 3, we moved her to a studio that is less than a mile from our house. The Wednesday AM class time is perfect because it gives us something to do while Jack’s at school… AND it’s next to a Starbucks, so I’m looking forward to a weekly coffee and reading date while Isla’s in class. Everybody wins!

Of course I made her pose for pre-class pics, because is there anything cuter than a tiny ballerina?? This kind of makes me cry though- last year on the left, this year on the right. I miss those chubby cheeks.

Obviously I still need bun lessons.

She’s super excited to be in class with two of her buddies, Addie and Audra:

We had kind of a rough afternoon. I had to run a couple of errands after pick-up and they were just WILD. Grabbing everything off the shelves at Michael’s, wrestling on the floor at Target, basically just completely ignoring me. It’s so frustrating. They’re so good at home (95% of the time) and then when we go out in public they act like cracked out little hooligans. Why??? Ugh. Needless to say they were fed and down relatively early tonight. Brian and I just heated up leftover chicken verde enchiladas and cilantro-lime cauliflower rice because that was about the extent of my motivation and energy come 7pm.

I need to do some laundry, start a project for Jack’s class and make his lunch for tomorrow. But I really just want to pour a glass of wine and watch bad TV. Let’s see which one wins…

Posted in August 2015 | Leave a comment

Picky Eaters

Hiiii friends. I’m taking a break from ironing 8 huge curtain panels for the den. It’s reminding me why I wear workout clothes every day… ironing is the worst. We had a pretty low-key day. My in-laws left around 11, and despite big plans for a Costco trip, Isla and I just made a quick Target run and then grabbed a girls’ lunch at a local Thai restaurant. Weirdly, spring rolls are one of the approximately 5 foods that this chick will actually eat.

Picked Jack up from school and then we all kind of crashed. I know I’ve said it before but this school schedule is no joke!! Luckily he still seems to love it and hasn’t been TOO hard to wake up in the mornings. Once Brian got home, we headed to dinner at Cowboy Chicken. I love that place but the kids aren’t crazy about it, which is NUTS because their kids quesadilla is amazing. Jack ate fried okra and Isla ate a roll. Dinner of champions. I had the Southwest salad:

Off to iron some more. Isla has her first ballet class at a new studio tomorrow, so hopefully some cute pics to come!

Posted in August 2015 | Leave a comment

Easy Enchiladas

It was so fun seeing all of the first day of school posts today… I feel like an old pro now that we’ve been back for a whole week, haha.

We had a busy weekend. Brian’s parents are still here and they’ve spent the past few days soaking up time with the kids and trying a few of our favorite restaurants (Luscher’s, Taco Joint, Matt’s). Tonight’s their last night here, and since it’s a school night we decided to eat at home. This early bedtime thing is TOUGH. Brian gets home around 7 or later and then the kids need to be in bed by 8 = not a lot of family time. Anyway, I made a batch of verde chicken enchiladas using Cookwell & Co. Green Chile Stew (from Central Market):

I’ve made this dish several times in the past and it’s SO easy. It’s also pretty light, too, if you use corn tortillas, light sour cream and 2% cheese. For the chicken I did my usual method of throwing some boneless, skinless breasts in the crock pot for a few hours and then shredding. Such a perfect recipe for a group- you can even assemble it ahead of time and then bake right before serving.

On the side is some cilantro-lime cauliflower rice that I posted about last year. Used my last bag of stockpiled Trader Joe’s frozen cauli rice. SAD. Restock soon please, TJ’s!!

Hope everyone’s first day of school went well! Loved seeing all of those sweet pics.

Posted in August 2015 | 1 Comment

Lights Out

Hey guys! So we’ve had a weird couple of days- yesterday around 5pm our electricity went out, and it stayed off until 4:30 this morning! It wasn’t raining or anything, just a little windy, so I have no idea what the deal was. But basically our house was pitch black last night… which was not awesome because Brian’s parents are driving in today from SC to spend the weekend with us. I was literally sitting in the floor of the guest room/office in a head lamp, unpacking boxes in the dark. Basically up until yesterday the guest room was full of boxes, furniture, random mirrors and artwork that we just stashed in there when we moved in. I wish I had taken a before pic, but here’s the after. Just in the nick of time, too.

Brian put together that IKEA daybed and bookcase. The bed took a good six hours to assemble, but I really love it. It pulls out into a king AND has giant storage drawers underneath. Plus I’m hoping I can crawl up there with a book and hide from the kids at some point.

I bought a couple of Rifle Paper Co. prints right after we moved in and couldn’t figure out where to hang them, but I think they look great in here. The rug and all of the bedding are from Target, the desk is IKEA, the nightstands are old and the white lamp is on loan from my mom (thanks, mom).

Still need curtains and more stuff on the walls, but not bad for a couple days work, eh?

It was SO NICE outside today. This morning it was in the 60′s, which is crazy given that we’ve had so many 100 degree days lately. Makes me so excited for fall. We took advantage of the patio weather (and the clean kitchen) and headed to ModMarket for dinner.

M’rita pizza and the wintergreen salad:

And my two little monkeys. I swear I didn’t tell them to pose like this, they’re just ALWAYS touching- which can be really sweet or really violent, depending on the day. Or hour.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Posted in August 2015 | Leave a comment

Our New Routine

After yesterday’s rough morning, I was pretty nervous about getting Jack ready for school today. But about 1 minute before I needed to go in and wake him up, he wandered into our room with uniform in hand! Nice! Needless to say he was excited to go back today, which is such a relief.

Once a month I’m scheduled to help out in the cafeteria at school, and today just happened to be my day (and also Jack’s first day to eat in the cafeteria EVER). It was so cute to see him walk in with his class. If you volunteer for cafeteria duty, your kid has the option of sitting with you or their class, and sweet boy opted to sit with me and even offered to share his lunch. Love him (and totally understand that this “liking mom at school” thing isn’t going to last forever).

After school we made a “quick” Monster Yogurt trip that actually turned into 2 hours of playing on their playground. Once we got home I didn’t have the time or energy to make a big dinner, so I just grilled some Kirkland’s turkey burgers, baked a batch of Alexia fries, threw some watermelon on their plates and called it a day. Yes.

Oh man, 2 days in and this school schedule is kicking my butt. We’ve been doing quite a few house projects too, and I can’t seem to make it into bed before midnight. So now it’s 8:30 and I’m chug-a-luggin some coffee… then it’s dishes, packing lunch/snack, picking up toys, folding laundry and collapsing. And obviously a glass of wine in there somewhere.

Posted in August 2015 | Leave a comment

Roll-Ups

Thanks for all of the sweet messages and texts today! Jack’s first day went great. The morning started out a little rough- he climbed into our bed around 3am and said that he had a bad dream, then couldn’t fall back asleep for a while. Needless to say he was NOT a happy camper come 6:45 this AM (I think Isla is the only morning person in this family). But by the time we got to school he rallied and seemed super excited to be there! I forgot to take pics out in front of our house, but I did snap a few once we got to school:

He got out at 11:30 today and said that he had a great day. Whew. I’m really happy with his class and teacher, so here’s hoping for a good year!

Oh… and this happened once we got home. Sweet, sweet boy.

Tonight for dinner I made these lasagna roll-ups. My friend Jill served them at book club a few years ago and I’ve made them several times since. They just take a little bit of prep (cooking the lasagna noodles, mixing the filling and then assembling), but I think you could probably make them ahead of time and then throw them in the oven before dinner. Also, leftovers!! The recipe makes 10 rolls- Brian and I each had 2 (probably would have been fine with 1 but they’re just SO GOOD) so we still have enough for another few meals.

The kids wouldn’t touch them, though they were pretty excited about eating plain lasagna noodles. Weirdos.

Tomorrow’s Jack’s first full day of school, so wish us luck! It’s my day to volunteer in the cafeteria so I’ll get to be a creepster and spy on him a little bit.

Posted in August 2015 | Leave a comment