Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Excuses, excuses

I've been extremely lax on the blog-writing front. First, we're in the process of revamping our study/guest room (YAY!!!!) so I was without internet for several days. So our weekends and evenings have been spent (at least partially spent) painting, organizing, and cleaning.

Second, Paul, my child whom I love very much (as I have to keep reminding myself) has suddenly decided that 6 am is an appropriate time to wake up. Now, for some, 6 is not the end of the world. It is for me. I am NOT a morning person. At all. I never have been. And I need my sleep or I'm a total wreck. In fact, this morning when I heard Paul banging around at 6:10, I rolled over and told Aaron, "I'm seriously at the point of having a nervous breakdown." Paul then proceeded to come downstairs and whisper at the door, "Mom, I pooped in my underwear." I lost it. I just started to bawl because I could not deal with it any more. Luckily, I have the most wonderful husband in the whole world who got up and took care of it, even though it meant that he was late for work. Honey, I love you! MWAH!!!

Which leads me to my third reason I have not blogged much. We're potty-training Paul, and he's actually doing really well. It's been a breeze compared with Katie. But it takes constant vigilance or you many wind up with a mess on the carpet. I really wish there was a potty-training boot camp that you could send your kids to for 2 weeks, and then they'd be mostly trained by the time they came home. I think there's serious money to be made in that idea.

I can't remember if I mentioned before, but Averi is seriously getting around now. She is a textbook crawler. She's the only one of my kids that didn't start off doing the army crawl. One day she just figured out how to move her arms and legs in a coordinated fashion and she was off. But now we're in serious trouble. I went in to get her from her nap today, and she had PULLED HERSELF TO A STANDING POSITION in her crib and was playing with the blinds. When she saw me, it startled her and she flopped over backwards, but she thought it was quite hilarious and that she was hot stuff. Later this evening, she did it three more times! She can't be standing yet! She's only 7 months old! And she doesn't even sit! She can, but she's too busy getting places that she doesn't have time for something as stationary as sitting. But seriously. Now the baby-proofing will have to begin in earnest. I've already warned Katie that any Barbie accessories left on the floor will be eaten by Averi or thrown away by me. Fortunately, Katie is so appalled by the idea of Barbie having a missing shoe (shock! horror!) that I have no worries that they will be picked up. It's very nice sometime to have a child with OCD!

And now for some pictures to tide the grandparents over until I can post again:

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Using Google Reader

I know that there are a lot of people who enjoy reading blogs, but it's just so much work to keep on top of all of them. If this is you, then Google Reader is your new best friend. All you need to have is a Google account. If you have Gmail or a Blogger account, then you have a Google account. If not, sign up for one HERE.

For those of you with gmail, it's really easy to access Google Reader. When you're signed into your gmail inbox, you'll see a link for "Reader" in the top left corner of your page. It looks like this:

If you don't have a Gmail account, find Google Reader HERE.

If you're not already signed in, you'll be taken to a page that looks like the following:

Once you've signed in, you'll be taken the the main Google Reader page. In the top left corner, you'll see a button that says to add a subscription. This is where you paste the address for the RSS feed of the blog you wish to follow

The easiest way to add a blog is to simply enter the blog address. For example, if you wished to add the Help A Sister Out blog to your reader:

You can also find the RSS feed of a blog by looking for this logo:

Here's the RSS feed of a financial blog I subscribe to:

Once you've added the blogs you follow, you can organize them into folders by going to Manage Subscriptions in the bottom left corner:

Let me know if you have any questions about using google reader or if there are some steps I missed out!

Easter Outfits

I knew as soon as I saw The Children's Place spring catalog that I had to have the polka dot dress for Katie. Apparently, so did everyone else in our ward. We arrived a little late to sacrament meeting on Sunday, and the kids of EVERY FAMILY that was in the foyer were decked out in The Children's Place. We should have had a ward photo shoot, because everyone would have coordinated. It was quite adorable.

Our photos from Sunday aren't the best. The weather was just gross, so there was no going outside. And our living room was trashed from Easter preparations, so there weren't many good places to take pictures there, either. But when you have totally adorable kids, it doesn't matter that much! Our kids were also completely exhausted, so we didn't have much time to take photos. But they're still cute.

Aaron thought Paul's outfit was too wussy-looking, but I thought he was super handsome. And when you're the one doing the shopping, you get the final say!

Katie thought she was the bee's knees in her dress. And she was.

Averi was so ready for her nap, so we had to try all sorts of crazy antics to get her to smile. But it's so worth it!

No, I'm not growing out my bangs. I just REALLY need a haircut. Unfortunately, that comes quite low on the priority list these days.

Easter Eggs!

Upholding the tradition of dying eggs while in underwear.

So many choices...

Paul hasn't yet realized that orange and green make a really lovely...brown.

Katie meticulously placing her stickers.

Our works of art.

The aftermath.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Thoughts for Easter Sunday

A friend of mine posted this on her blog, and it was the perfect way to end our Easter Sunday. Elder Holland's talk at conference was amazing, and this video displays it beautifully. I'm so grateful for the atonement of our Lord and for the sacrifice that He made for us. I'm so grateful that He knows my pains and my sorrows because He has suffered them. I am truly grateful that I am never alone.

Thursday, April 9, 2009


Friday, April 3, 2009

She's getting so big!

Averi is just the cutest baby ever. She's such a little princess. She's so sweet most of the time, but she can go from zero to sixty in about 3 seconds, and back again just as quickly. I love her hair. It's so fine that it stands straight up, but it's totally cute. She's also beginning to learn how to crawl. She loves to get up and rock on her hands and knees, and she's finally figured out that she can get to things by doing that. She mostly goes backwards now, but in the last day or two she's finally been able to go forward a little bit. She's getting so big!

Bean and Cheese Enchiladas

Aaron was sick yesterday, so I made him one of his favorite meals. It's nothing very fancy or gourmet, but it's just downright delicious. I make my own enchilada sauce for these, since I never seem to have any on hand and I like being able to control the sodium. But you could always use 1 jar of mild and 1 jar of hot and combine them together for this recipe.

First make up a batch of the enchilada sauce (I usually double it, since I like it really saucy and it's nice to have leftover sauce). Have everything ready, since you don't want the flour and chili powder to burn. I've done that, and trust me, it's not very good.

10 Minute Enchilada Sauce
(It's actually more like 15 minute sauce, but who cares.)

1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons self-rising flour (I've always used all-purpose, and it's turned out okay)
1/4 cup chili powder
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion salt
salt to taste

1. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in flour and chili powder, reduce heat to medium, and cook until lightly brown, stirring constantly to prevent burning flour.
2. Gradually stir in tomato sauce, water, cumin, garlic powder, and onion salt into the flour and chili powder until smooth, and continue cooking over medium heat approximately 10 minutes, or until thickened slightly. Season to taste with salt.

Bean and Cheese Enchiladas
1 can (15 oz) red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can (4 oz) diced green chile peppers
1 can whole kernel corn
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cups shredded pepper-Jack cheese (you can substitute sharp cheddar for this)
1 batch enchilada sauce (above)
8 flour tortillas
Fresh cilantro for garnish

Heat oven to 375. In large bowl, mix beans, chile peppers, corn, chili powder, salt and cumin. Slightly mash beans; stir to combine. Add 1 cup cheese. Stir 1 cup of the enchilada sauce into bean mixture.

Spread 1/4 cup of the reamining enchilada sauce in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish. Brush one side of a tortilla with enchilada sauce. Spoon 1/4 cup of the bean mixture in center on sauced side; roll up. Place enchilada in baking dish. Repeat with remaining tortillas and bean mixture. Pour remaining enchilada sauce over top to cover. Top with remaining 1 cup cheese.

Bake at 375 for 15 minutes. Garnish with cilantro and serve with sour cream.

Mary Kay 50% Off

If any of you are interested, I'm selling all my remaining Mary Kay merchandise for 50% off. I've got quite a bit of stuff; you can check out my inventory on craigslist HERE, HERE, and HERE.