Sunday, February 28, 2010

Meatless March

Mostly Meatless March

Okay so I literally spent the entire day cooking for some meals for Meatless dinner March.  We are not going completely meatless, just for dinners and we are going to eat fish.  It is just something different!!  My husband isn't really on board, so we might be adding in a day of meat.  This also doesn't include going out or ordering in meals!

So the freezer is packed.  I made

Cheesy Burritos (2 )
Enchildas (1 with leftovers)
Veggie Potpie with sweet potato crust (at least 3 meals)
Veggie Lasagna (2)
Stuffed Shells (2)
Manicotti (2)
Tomato Orzo Soup (2 with leftovers)
Calzones (2 with extra)
Extra noodle lasagna (1)

So one day of cooking and 17 meals, not bad.  Of course the problem with bulk cooking is that you might make a large quantity but it is multiples of the same food.  My husband doesn't love leftovers and repeat meals have to be used sparingly.

So for this week:
Week 1
Monday- Cheesy Burritos with salsa on the side and corn/ rice as sides
Tuesday- Veggie Potpie
Wednesday- Manicotti
Thursday- Leftovers
Friday- Leftovers (yes I am trying this twice, this week!)
Saturday-  out/ Grilled Cheese and tomato soup
Week 2
Sunday- Fish, maybe Cod
Monday- Eggplant Parmesan (if I can find an eggplant, Giant was out this week!!)
Tuesday- Veggie Lasagna
Wednesday- Tomato Orzo Soup
Thursday- Spaghetti
Friday- Leftovers
Saturday- Out/ Eggs
Week 3
Sunday- Trader Joe's Crabcakes
Monday- Susie's Enchilada Bake with Lime Rice
Tuesday- Calzones
Wednesday- Stuffed Shells
Thursday- Leftovers
Friday- Perogies
Saturday- out/ Grilled Cheese and soup
Week 4
Sunday- Veggie Lasagna
Monday- Veggie Potpie
Tuesday-Roasted Veggies and Cannelini Beans with Feta Cheese
Wednesday- Cheesy Burritos
Thursday- Leftovers
Friday- Boboli Pizza
Saturday- Calzones/ out
Sunday- Portabello Mushroom Burgers

I am going to end it that Sunday since midweek it will be April.  I could still plan it all the way through.  So this is just a preliminary menu.  With this, I hopefully will not have much of a grocery bill because I won't have much to buy.  I also have a Quiche that I should use up so I need to find a spot to put that on the menu.  It might go on this Friday.  I have less then $200 to spend for groceries for the rest of the month (that is my budget).  Ideally I would like to see if I could stay $50 under this month.  We will see!!  I am excited to see that I will still have leftover food in the freezer after the month.  

Friday, February 26, 2010

Snow Day and Need Help

We had a snow day today- Celia and I.  Pete went to work.  Yesterday, Celia had a snow day and both Pete and I had to go to work.  I took a half day and Celia spent the morning with our neighbors.  We both have colds so it was also a somewhat sick afternoon.  Amazingly my cold feels like just a tiny, itty bitty one but was kicking me terribly yesterday. 

In anycase..  This is what Celia wore over to our neighbor's house- oh plus a coat.

This is what she did this morning, then melted down into a tiny mess as Mommy evidently went past that "magic" time when she was just ready for her nap and went into the toddler monster stage. 

Stuck a huge amount of coins in her pockets

Sat on the couch, smiling because she was able to stuff a huge amount of gold coins in her pockets.  Interestingly, underneath her, inside places in the couch that my hands can not reach are an equal amount of coins.  Is it odd to that my child can still wear 18 month pants and she isn't all that tiny?

I have no idea.  It involved toilet training the baby, spilling a pile of coins, and then sweeping.
"washing" dishes

There was also some time spent watching Handy Manny, playing on starfall with Mommy, going over letters, singing Mat Man, baking cookies, and playing with playdough.  Oh yes and some vaccuuming- from the big one, that one that she is scared of.  She wasn't thrilled but the downstairs needed it.  She also vaccuumed with her talking and groaning vaccuum.

Okay onto the help part.  For the 3 readers that read my blog.  I need help with a blank spot in my kitchen.  I am honestly so sick of my house right now and I am just taking things slowly.  I want to really organize things and make the house look nice.  But that process is so super slow.

Here is my favorite part of the house

Except for the vaccuum cleaner handle on the side, this corner is put together.  I love it.  It is perfect.  This is in the corner of the kitchen.

Here is above my hutch in my kitchen.

That whole wall is blank.  I need something to go there.  No Pete we can not put a flat screen tv there.  I was thinking about a chalk board or cork board but am afraid that could get messy looking.  I just don't know.  Any ideas??

Monday, February 22, 2010

Gavin's Story

If you have the time- 32 minutes exactly.  Go to Gavin's blog and listen to his story.  You need kleenex in hand, but honestly it is an amazing story.  I wrote about Gavin in November and I purchased some babylegs to be donated to AI Dupont Hospital in his memory.  Gavin's family doesn't live very far from us and his story was on the local news.  His mother's has put his story with pictures on video.  She is sharing her experience too.  It has some very important life lessons, at least I think so.

Sunday, February 21, 2010


This weekend Celia and I gave Pete a weekend to himself, well almost a whole weekend.  We arrived back around 11:30 today.  Friday evening I took Celia to Pete's parents.  She was actualy wonderful driving up despite some traffic.  We had fun, so honestly I did not mind the Friday rush hour traffic at all.  We stopped at Panera's for dinner and the manager was wonderful.  At this Panera's, you have to walk up to the counter to get your order when your little disc thing starts vibrating.  He had already caught our eye and the fact that I was by myself with a 2 year old.  He basically met me mid way and said, I will get your food.  He put the food on our table and then when we were done he helped to clean up.  At Panera's you have to put your trash, including your uneaten food in the trashcan and then put your dishes on the top of the can.  Okay most of you know what you have to do at Panera's- but for those that don't, I explained it!  It was a great help.  Celia was a bit loud at the restaurant, but from what I could tell no one cared. 
She was super excited when we got to Grandma and Grandpas and went to bed a bit late- but wouldn't you know, she woke up at 5:45!!  I had a great time that evening watching the Olympics with Pete's family and knitting.  I finished Celia a scarf and started another one.  On Saturday we took Celia to the Hands on House.  She had a blast, but the place is so small and gets crowded very fast.  I am thinking about doing a membership but I am a little frustrated at how really crowded it gets.  In anycase Celia had an amazing time.  She had so much fun playing with Grandma and Granny during the afternoon too.  I got to go for a 40 min. run too!!  Everytime I sat down and wasn't involved with Celia (which was often because she was very occupied by Grandparents and Greatgrandparents) I was knitting so my scarf is 3/4 of the way done.  The reason I report that is that I have been trying to learn to knit for many, many, many, years.  I finally got it!!  Of course, I have no clue how to purl.  That is about 10 years down the road.  Saturday evening I had some more fun watching the Olympics with Pete's family.  Oh prior to that we watched some Thomas the Tank Engine with Celia.  Goodness gracious is that a brutal show.
So today we played with Grandma and Grandpa some more and then headed on home.  Celia was so tired that I thought she would certainly fall asleep on the way home.  But she stayed awake, not all that happy, but not bad at all.   I didn't get very much accomplished as far as work on household things done- but that can be for another weekend. 
I certainly would do it again!  Thank you for a great weekend Grandma and Grandpa!!  Hopefully Grandpa can send some photos as I forgot my camera.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Dear Cecelia,

I love you.  Tonight I looked at you for awhile and I just melted.  You were standing in the bathroom in your footy pink Monkey pajamas and hanging onto a stuffed moose that you were calling a puppy.  You were holding this little stuffed moose as though he were your favorite lovey, even though you just found him 2 minutes earlier.  Goodness you were cute.  Of course at the time you were explaining to me that I needed to get off the toilet because it was time to share with you.  You know Mommy has no privacy.  When it was your turn on the toilet, I had to shut the door and give you some privacy. 
I soaked you up this evening little girl.  I sniffed your sweet hair after your shower and rocked you a little when you were cuddled in your towel.  You like to pretend you are a baby sometimes and I am okay with that.  Tonight, I didn't get frustrated when all you wanted to do was be in my arms even though I needed to make dinner.  Perogies and green peas and sliced apples can certainly be made with a two year old on your hip.  I didn't get frustrated because tonight at least I had looked at you and realized that you are growing up.  I don't want to make time stand still or go back little girl, I don't.  I don't because every day that I am with you, you seem to get even more cute.  I am glad when I have these soaking in days.  You will only be this little this one day, tomorrow you will be older.
When I came to pick you up today, you were crying.  You had an argument with your friend Ben and I was told that it wasn't your fault.  I was surprised because my sweet little girl, you tend to be the instigator.  But in a rare moment, it was Ben and you were terribly upset.  So it was nice in a way, to have you welcome my arrival and sink into Mommy.  Usualy when I come to pick you up at school, you don't want to go home.  Today, despite your tears, it was the same.  It is nice to know that you love school.
I do love you so much.  I even love the fact that you have to sleep with two wash rags, wet in one spot.  You have to smear chapstick all over your face and drink a million sips of water.  You have to cling to me and tell me that you are going to cry if I leave.  So I stay a few extra moments and then my little one, I do tell you that I am leaving and you can cry if you want to.  You are not that happy about that but you do accept it.
I love you Cecelia.  You exhaust me some days, but I really love you.

Love, Mommy

Friday, February 12, 2010

2 Week Menu

Sunday- Taco Soup (from freezer)
Monday- Slow Cooker Italian Chicken- except frozen greenbeans
Tuesday- Marinated Pork Tenderloin
Wednesday- Perogies
Thursday- Crustless Quiche- I don't think I have ever made a quiche before, we will likely use spinach
Friday- Out/ Eggs
Sat- Out/Eggs- we either will go out Sat or Friday
Sunday- Spaghetti
Monday- Turkey Sloppy Joes
Tuesday- Corn Chowder
Wednesday- Turkey Burgers with cheese and tomatoes
Thursday- Jam Pork Chops
Friday- out
Saturday- tator tot casserole- totally not me but trying something different, I would use ground turkey.  The other day I did look at one of the tator tot bags because I have heard about this recipe and it wasn't all that bad.  More processed things then i like, but not horrible.

I still plan on doing Meatless March.  I am going to share my menu ideas soon.  Pete I think will relax when he sees what is on there.  I am curious to see if the grocery bill is less with going meatless.  My guess is no because I never notice that meat is a huge expense.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Pictures of our minor snowstorm... yeah right, just a little snow

The tree that fell down at our neighbor's house

See the table, Pete cleared it prior to the snow storm.

Yeah right, Mommy, I can really travel through snow that is taller then me.

Now this morning...
See those cars, they are stuck at the entrance to our development!

Our street, we dug our cars out and then realized, we couldn't go anywhere if we wanted to!

This is the street right outside of our development, it isn't a major road but not a "side" street.  Typically it is quite busy.  I wonder if it will be plowed today.  If you look closely you can see how low the power lines are dipping.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Monkeytastic Unbelievable

That is right- we have already gotten more then a foot more snow and likely will get another 6 inches at least.  It really just doesn't seem like anything though because there was already so much snow out there to begin with.  Basically there are white outs all over the area and we are considered in a Blizzard.

I believe it as we were out not too long ago.  A neighbor's tree fell down and Pete and two other neighbors helped to move some of the limbs.  It was quite bad.

Pete is thinks he is going into work tomorrow.  I feel safe in saying, there will not be school tomorrow.  Skeptics are 100% agreeing on that.  Pictures maybe later!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Third Snowy Day round of pictures

These are some pictures of fun outside.  It was hard for me to take great pictures of Celia because I was also trying to, well watch a 2 1/2 year old!

Our neighbor, in what I thought was a cool action shot!  Celia had a blast sledding with her.

Sledding with Daddy

Yes, 28 inches starts to literally bury your car

"And I shall climb Mount ... no wait a minute, I am so bundled up that my knees barely move, I'm not even climbing stairs.  My Mom also thinks that this snow suit that is size 12 months fits me perfectly.  But I am not so sure, she isn't the one with the constant wedgy" (It does fit her though, I just add alot of layers underneath it, probably overkill).

So you see all this snow?  Imagine another foot on top.  That will be us evidently by Wednesday evening.  I will believe it when I see it.  That would be monkeytastic unbelievable.

Oh and a side note.  Today's commute was likely one of the more scary commutes to work.  I don't understand why it was so necessary that we fit a day of school in when the side roads were clearly in need of some work.   

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Update with no pictures

I have superloaded the blog with photos and I still do have some more snowy photos but I am feeling too lazy to load them right now.  I am also bummed.  We have 28 inches outside- 28 mind you!  I don't have off tomorrow, I have a 2 hr delay.  What does it take to get a snow day???  7 years ago when we got less, about 20 inches, it took the area 3 days to clean up.  We had off from school 2 days (it would have been 3 but that Monday was president's day).  So the large amounts of snow mean nothing really this year.  I love it but I need my snowdays!  I suppose 2 hr delays are better then nothing.

In anycase, I have done a tremendous amount of cooking this weekend so the freezer has some new things in it. 

Friday I made muffins.
Saturday- 2 Potpies, the filling for a 3rd
Sunday- The crust for the 3rd potpie and baked that, 2 1/2 freezer containers of taco soup, a whole chicken, and crescent chicken is cooking for tomorrow's meal.  I am hoping to freeze half of that.  Oh and apple crisp for dessert.  I have the chicken carcass in the freezer, ready for a chicken soup.

I need to do this again.  Having the freezer filling up again is satisfying!!

Please send happy, happy, snowday thoughts for me on Wednesday.  We are expecting another storm Tuesday night.  Oh and please send prayers to my sister that my niece goes back to school sometime this week.  She had off all but one day last week and they just got more snow this weekend.  My niece doesn't have school tomorrow again!  My sister is going to go nuts.


Saturday, February 6, 2010

2nd Snow Report

Pete is infuriating me by saying that there is no way we will have a snow day on Monday.  This is likely the biggest snow storm in history here.  I think we should have a day!  I am optimistic, definately a 2 hr. delay.  What do you think FIL?  Don't you think I will have off, you are always reasonable!  I mean the major roads are one thing, the side streets are another.  We haven't ventured out yet, but I want to.  I just might after lunch or after Celia's nap.  So what have we been up to while this has been going?

Valentines Day is coming and Celia has lots of Valentines to make!!  She practiced her cutting (I turned the paper for her).  She primarily cut out the hearts that are shown on the kitchen table.  She liked the fancy edge scissors and did very well with it.  The hearts right below were done by placing them in a box with a painted ball.  She loved it.  We sang "rock, rock, rock the boat" to rock the box.  Pete tried to help her and used a different song.  She quickly informed him that was'nt the right song.

Oh we also used some stampers.  We used some big stampers from Mom Mom and some smaller stampers from Cousin Mikki.  I am not loving the stampers as much because she tends to set them down any where.  The washable stamp pads that we have are not as washable as I would like!

So I wonder what more we could do today!

Lots of the White and Silly Stuff!

So about an houur ago they just updated our snow totals to between 20 to 28 inches!  Maybe I will have a two hour delay on Monday.  The last storm when we got 18-20 inches I had a two hour delay.  In Richmond they would be shut down for a week.  As a teacher with snow days built into the school year, I am bitter about this.  Of course I have the disadvantage of living outside of my school's county and we do typically get more here.  Pete thinks I am crazy, I am when it comes to snow.  I get excited about it, I watch every single news broadcast (until I eventualy do get bored).

So what has Celia been doing so far on this snowy day? 

Pulling her toy drawer chest out of it's spot to make her "grocery" list.  Evidently no one has told her that they have banned 2 year olds on trikes for a long time.

Removing some drawers from her toy chest and cracking her self up

Did you notice the curls, still there- until after she lays down!! 
Oh and currently she is traveling up and down the stairs to bring Daddy various play food items.  I have been told he needs cereal bars, eggs, pizza, and coffee.

Here are some snow pictures

Check out the table in the deck photo!  That was taken about 2 hours ago and the snow is coming down heavily.  28 inches would be cool to see, I don't think we will get quite that much.  My prediction is around 22 inches.  Getting out of the house is going to be interesting, the snow is piled against our door.  I guess we should shovel some out of the way.  I will update with pictures later.

Friday, February 5, 2010