Top ten tuesday … got milk?

January 19, 2010 at 9:10 am (Megan, Top Ten Tuesday)

Well, I’ve got milk in the fridge (three different kinds no less) and A LOT of milk related questions.  Can you help?? When Megan was an infant I had to start her on Lacto-Free Formula because of spitting up & just overall an inability to digest milk on its own.  Now honestly, I don’t really know if it was the Lacto-Free that worked or if it was just timing.  But her tummy was happier on Lacto-Free so that’s what we used. 

 Fast-forward to a year & I asked her pediatrician about which milk to use.  She suggested we start with regular Whole, Cow’s milk and just see how she does.  That’s what we did.  And for about five months, things were fine. 

Until last week.  For no clear reason she started throwing up. Of course I backed off all milk-based products and after about a day to a day & a half of holding food down I gave her a cup of milk.  Twenty minutes later … sick to her stomach again.  This happened again & so I stopped giving her milk.  I’ve given her some glasses of Organic Fat-Free milk the last couple of days & she’s held that down without any problems, but she doesn’t exactly need to be on a Fat-Free Diet!!! 

So, that’s the background.  *Whew* Now on to the questions. 

1. Is Lacto-Free an issue that could come & go? 

2. What is Soy Milk

 3. Is Lacto-Free Milk basically cow milk but without the Lacto??  And how in this world do they get the Lacto out? 

4. But Soy Milk is Lacto-Free … right? 

5. So how is Lacto-Free different from Soy Milk which is different from Cow’s Milk

6. If I give her Soy Milk do I also need to give her Vit D supplements?  Or does it have enough Vitamin D already? 

7. What about Lacto-Free Milk?  Does that have enough Vit D for her? 

8. What in this world is Silk Milk?? 

9. Why are there so many kinds of milk?? When did this happen?? 

10. Any kind of milk I’m missing that I should consider? 

So no pressure or anything, but it is for this little cutie!! 

Megan ~ December 2009

For more Top Ten Tuesday or to link up your own post, visit ohAmanda

And obviously, I’m not looking for an answer to every one of these questions, but if you do know anything about what I should be feeding Megan that would be appreciated!!

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Conversations with a four year old …

January 18, 2010 at 5:42 am (4 year olds, Conversations with a 4 year old)

Another conversation courtesy of this cute little four-year old:

Yep, this has NOTHING to do with the Conversation, but might explain alot!

The four year old: Mommy why do we have two eyes?Me: Well, it would probably be hard to see with just one eye so God gave us two.

The four year old: Well the monster has only one eye.

Me: Well, you’re right.  But that’s because monsters are pretend.  So I guess some of them only need one eye.

The four year old: Well no.  He just has one eye because that’s the way God made the ugly mean big blue monster.

Me: Oh.

And that my dear friends is just one example of why some days I feel like I’m going a little crazy!

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Blissfully blissdom links … part 2

January 16, 2010 at 5:50 am (Blissdom 10, blogging)

Blissdom is just 3 weeks away & my excitement level continues!!

First, if you haven’t already, be sure to link up to some “unofficial” guest lists to see who all is going and to either meet new people or to say “oh my goodness, I didn’t know you were going”!!

You can find some at Lisa at Simply His and The Nester

But on to the posts.  I’m definitely not the only one excited because there were a lot of great Blissdom-related posts out there this week.  Did you catch any?  Here’s a few that I caught to help me prepare.  Let me know if you caught any others that I should be reading!!

How to REALLY BRING IT to Blissdom by Linda Sellers – some simple ideas with everything from hugs to energy!

Get Ready for Blissdom – Part 1 by Giving Up on Perfect – again, some really practical advise especially for a newbie.  It’s great to hear it from someone who was that newbie last year!!

Conferences Put the “Social” in Social Media by Real Lifeeverything from clothes, to business cards (which you MUST click over just to see her super cute cards!!), to a reminder to bring an extra bag for some ‘swag’!

What to Wear to Blissdom by Musings of a Housewife – an entire post dedicated to “what to wear” … I’m always a candidate for What NOT to Wear, so I definitely needed this one!!

Advice for Making the Most of Blissdom by Musings of aHousewife – another great post from Jo-Lynne with some good tips for breaking the ice and feeling comfortable!

Blogging Niche & Beyond (a guest post by Boston Mamas) at ohAmanda – this is part 2 of her Bliss*tastic series!

And of course the big news of the week is that HARRY CONNICK JR will be a special performer to our small group of 500 … how incredibly fun is that!!!

So, that’s what I read this week.  Did you read anything else?  Leave me a comment if so, and I’ll be sure to check it out!!

And don’t forget to read Blissfully blissdom links (part 1).

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Butternut squash

January 15, 2010 at 9:20 am (Finer Things Friday, recipes)

This past fall I was introduced to Butternut Squash.

You know, the usual.  “Hi I’m Mandi”.  “Hi I’m Butternut Squash” … what that doesn’t happen to you?!?

The November 2009 issue of Parents Magazine had a really yummy-sounding recipe for Baked Macaroni & Cheese.  However it included Butternut Squash (we hadn’t met at this time).  The picture looked yummy so I thought I’d give it a try.

Butternut Squash

Here’s what you’ll need:

2 cups butternut squash cut into cubs
2 tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 lb elbow macaroni (I used whole wheat)
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp flour (again, I used whole wheat)
1 1/2 cups reduced fat milk
1 3/4 cups low-fat white cheddar cheese, shredded and divided

Here’s what you’ll do: (Once I figured out how to cut that big Squash in half, I was in business!!!)

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
Toss squash with oil and salt on a foil-lined tray.
Bake for 20 minutes or until tended, set aside (or eat a few … this is when I officially became a fan of Butternut Squash … yummy!!)

Yummy!

Cook pasta for 2 minutes less than the package directions call for; drain and place in a bowl with squash.
Meanwhile, melt butter over low heat.
Whisk in flour, cook for 2 minutes
Slowly whisk in milk.
Bring mixture to a boil, then simmer.
Cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.   Add 1 1/2 cups cheese & stir until melted.
Stir cheese sauce into pasta & squash.
Season with Salt & Pepper.
Spoon into a greased casserole dish (or individual servings).  Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Bake for 10 minutes until cheese on top is melted & browned.

Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese

I thought it was delicious.  My husband thought it was delicious.  The kids … not so much!!  Instead, Evan kept asking for “the other macaroni”.  As in the 3-minute, highly processed & fake cheese junk!!!!  I worked my tail off to make some yummy, nutritious Mac & Cheese & that’s what he wants … oh brother!!!

Post linked to Finer Things Friday … because Butternut Squash is now one of my finer things!

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Things i love thursday … from the four year old

January 14, 2010 at 8:01 am (random)

Evan goes through stages of either wanting to eat breakfast or not wanting to eat breakfast. 

Right now, he wants to eat breakfast.  He wants to eat breakfast for breakfast.  He wants to eat breakfast for lunch.  He wants to eat breakfast for snacks.  And he wants to eat breakfast for dinner

 When he goes to bed at night, he reminds me that he wants to eat breakfast when he wakes up (*shew* I might forget otherwise)!

The catch?  He only wants to eat one thing for breakfast. 

The answer?  Quaker Instant Oatmeal – Dinosaur Eggs Edition!!

You may remember that this little  four year old loves dinosaurs.  And we hosted the Dinosaur of all Dinosaur Birthday Parties.  So when I found these in the store, I knew they’d be a hit!!

I asked Evan to help me write this post by asking him a few questions.  It went like this:

What’s your favorite thing about Dinosaur Oatmeal?:  The Eggs.

Why are they your favorite?:  Because I like them.

Why do you like them?:  Because they’re my favorite.

Well you can see how well this is going.

So, I’ll tell you my favorite thing about them … he eats it!!  No complaints.  No whines.  No worries.  He asks for it, we make it together, and he eats it!!  If only every meal could go so smoothly!!

They’re not the most healthy thing in the world for him – sugar is the #2 ingredient & the actual eggs definitely contain everything I’d rather them not contain, but they are made with Whole Grain Oats:)  And it’s better than him not eating breakfast!!  I’ll add some fruit or eggs to the side and it’s all good!

And did I mention that he eats it?  WITHOUT complaining?  These days that’s carries A LOT of weight in this house!!

If you’d like to try it (or basically any Quaker Instant Oatmeal), they’re still on sale this week at Kroger.  You can also visit MommySnacks for a Printable $1 Quaker Coupon to save even more!

For more Things I Love Thursday or link up to something you love, visit the Diaper Diaries.

*Disclosure – As the title implies this is something I love.  The title of this post is not “Things I love because Quaker gave them too me”.  They didn’t.  I bought it.  We eat it.  I blogged about it.  That easy!

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Future blogger

January 13, 2010 at 8:35 am (Megan, Wordless Wednesday)

Megan ~ January 2010

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Top ten tuesday … thing i used to be/have

January 12, 2010 at 1:21 am (life, life with two, Top Ten Tuesday)

Usually my posts focus on what’ s going in my life, in that moment.  I decided I’d switch it up a bit & let you know The Top Ten Things I used to be or have … you know, before becoming a wife & mother!!

I used to have a …

1.  Dining Room – I know I’ve talked about this before, but it still saddens me!!  My dining room is now a toy room.  I had my Great-Great-Aunt’s antique table from a really, really long time ago & it’s been replaced by a Dinosaur Table.  Oh lovely!!. 

2.  Guest Room – Our little 3-bedroom house was purchased with the plan of only having one child in it.  We had no intentions of staying here longer than about 5 years, but that little “housing bubble” kind of messed up our plans!!  We don’t have company a lot, but when we do I would really love to offer a guest room instead of a sofa!!

3.  Career – It wasn’t a long career by any means, but I had one!!

and I used to be …

4. Organized – I once was pretty good at that.  Everything had its place.  I could find papers.  I didn’t misplace our Passports, random checks or Social Security Cards.  Some where along the way of becoming responsible for all my things, two little ones, AND a husband … I’ve become totally & completely UNorganized!!!  Mandi (she totally spells her name right!) at Organizing Your Way is hosting 31 Days of Organizing for a Better 2010.  She has some great tips & I’ve got to start putting some in place!!

5.  Clean – I still take showers, wash my hair, brush my teeth & all that good stuff.  But please don’t make me tell you the last time I mopped our floors or Lord help us even changed the sheets!!

6.  Size 4 – Yep.  I was one of these back in the day.  I actually remember being a little pissed off when my husband bought me a size 8 pair of pants one year.   Now I’m elated to be in a size 8!!

7.  a Slow Eater – This sounds crazy, I know.  And honestly I’ve never been good at eating my food slowly.  But I feel like I hoard my food in five minutes flat.  I think it’s just because I know that as soon as Megan or Evan are done then it’s going to get crazy and I’ll never get to finish so I just eat like I’m on the Dixie Speedway (I don’t even know if that’s the right reference … but I mean FAST)!

a Volunteer – Oh I feel badly about this one, but I still haven’t gotten plugged in & started volunteering at our church.  Part of it is likely excuses but part of it is also just logistics.  Megan does horrible in the church nursery (or anywhere for that matter) and honestly I feel bad enough that the Nursery workers have to keep her for an hour.  I couldn’t imagine doing that to them for 2 hours!!!

9.  a Traveler – Pepper & I were married for 6 years before we had Evan.  And that was part of the plan.  We knew it’d get harder & harder to take vacations after we started having kids & we were right.  It’s like night & day the amount of vacations we went on during our first six years of marriage to the past four!!

10.  Completely Unaware of how Wonderful (and difficult) this could be – Sure I miss all the above & sure some days are really (really, really, really) tough.  But I love my Megan, Evan & Pepper too much to worry too much about not having or being any of the above!!

So that’s me pre-who I am now in a nutshell!!
For more Top Ten Tuesday posts or to link up your own, visit ohAmanda.com

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Snow day

January 11, 2010 at 9:27 am (2010, family, snow, Snow Day)

My 2010 Snow Buddies ~ January 2010

It doesn’t take much snow in Atlanta to get everyone all excited. In fact I get excited just over seeing a few flurries.  So we can make a lot happen with just a half-inch!!!

And that’s what we got Thursday evening.  Schools closed  & Pepper was home from work.  We tried to stay warm, stay busy & have fun!!

We celebrated the Snow with an impromptu “SNOW DAY of Fun”.

We ate White SNOW Powdered Doughnuts for Breakfast.

Snow Powdered Doughnuts

Watched “SNOW” Themed Movies (Curious George Plays in the Snow, Snow Buddies, and Ice Age).

Movies & Popcorn

Ate Smores from the fire.

Yum! Yum!

And of course got some sledding fun in too!!  Poor Megan only lasted about five minutes but Evan was absolutely LOVING it!!

Sledding (on ice)

I really love the snow, but goodness gracious I get stir crazy fast!!!  I would love a big-time snow (you know, 3-4 inches – ha!), but I think now (as a parent of two little ones and not the excited teen/adult missing school or work) I’d want it all melted & gone in about two days!!  Times have definitely changed:)

IF this happens again, I’ll have to be a little more prepared!!!

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Blissfully blissdom links

January 9, 2010 at 10:07 am (Blissdom 10, blogging)

When I originally registered for Blissdom 10 I was pretty excited about going, but I was really excited about a girl’s trip with my Sisterchicks  Amanda, Staci & Becky.   Today, I’m still super excited about going with them but can I just tell you how incredibly excited I am about the Conference and meeting everyone!!! 

I really am! 

I’ve told a couple of bloggers & tweeting friends that they make me laugh or that I enjoy them so much online, I hope they don’t let me down when I meet them in person!

As a newbie, I’m trying to absorb all things Blissdom these last few weeks so I can feel ready but also so that I’ll continue to be excited.   Here’s just a couple really great posts that I’ve read this past week.  If you’re a newbie like me & you haven’t read these, be sure to take a minute and do.  I think you’ll find them helpful like me!!

          Do’s & Don’t for Surviving Blissdom 10 by Life in Grace:  This is a super practical & cute post about, well exactly what the name implies.  Great tips!!

          To Niche or Not to Niche (a guest post by Musings of a Housewife) at ohAmanda:  Amanda is  hosting a series called Bliss*tastic and she has a secret list of TOP guest bloggers lined up each week.  I know this is a series not to miss!!

          A Blissdom Packing List (a guest post by Mandi at Organizing Your Way) at Deal Seeking Mom:  This is actually from last year, but it will give me a head start on my packing list as I’m sure it’s still pretty similar.  Again, very practical information but super helpful to see it all in one place.

And then of course there’s the actual Blissdom Conference website.

          It’s fun to look through the Blissdom 10 Agenda, Session and Speaker Information.  I’ve started planning my schedule.  Have you??

Have you read (or written) any great articles to help a newbie out??  Be sure to leave them in the comments if you have, I’d love to read them if you have.

Are you going to Blissdom 10?  Let me know if you are.  I’d love to meet you!!

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Feeding the ducks

January 8, 2010 at 9:16 am (Christmas, family, Finer Things Friday)

On any special holiday and just random days throughout the year, we make it a point to go “feed the ducks“.   Unfortunately for our family there’s a back-story to that.  It means we’re visiting my brother-in-law’s grave site.  (It always stinks to summarize it like that … I won’t fill in all the details in this post, but you can click here or here to understand what that means us.)Anyhow, I managed to snap some really cute pictures.  The ducks were HUNGRY on this particular day!!  

Before The Bite

  

A little too hungry!! They snapped at Evan’s finger when he didn’t give them bread quick enough!!  

After The Bite

   

So Many Ducks

 Each Christmas, we take a new ornament to hang on Jeremy’s tree.  This year we went with something that both Megan & Evan love!

  

The Dinosaur Ornament

Because every little tree needs a dinosaur ornament!  Holidays are always tough when you’ve lost someone close. We’ve done this every year since Evan was a baby.   I really hope it’s a tradition they learn to respect and love.   We want Uncle Jeremy to be a part of there lives even though he’s not here with us.  I know Pepper hates having to celebrate Christmas with his brother like this, but at the same time I know he appreciates the tradition as well.

  

This post linked to Amy’s Finer Things Friday and Your Life Your Blog.

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