Thursday, March 28, 2013

Dinner for one

About twice a week or so the Hubby works late and I get to slack in my dinner preparations.  As in cereal for dinner. I can't complain; I think cereal is good any time and didn't it used to be its own food group back in the day, with grains? (C'mon, you know you remember when!)
But I got creative the other night (and dare I say a little gourmet?) and whipped up a tasty little salad all of which the ingredients I had on hand. Feeling completely full and satisfied, I figured I'd share the fruits (vegetables) of my labor:

Field greens salad with gorgonzola, asparagus and fried eggs:
Field greens- we shop at Whole Foods Market and they have a great selection of pre washed and ready to eat lettuce mixes
4 stalks asparagus- I had these left over from a previous meal. Originally I had roasted them in the oven with olive oil, salt and pepper so all I did to bring em back to life was saute them for a few minutes
Avocado halved and diced
Gorganzola cheese crumbled
Crutons
Fried eggs- I used 2
Choice of salad dressing- I used Caesar- love it.


It was so good! My 2 year old was even bumming bites! And what's great about a salad is anything goes. Seriously. If I hadn't been lazy, I'd have chopped a tomato and threw it into the mix too. Get creative. Be adventurous. Your mouth (and belly) will thank you.
Here's the gratuitous food shot:
(You're welcome)



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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Coming Home

It's been 3 months since we moved (4 times in 5 years, crazy! We're not even military!) back into my childhood home. With my grandparents. And my mom. Seriously. There are 5 generations living under one roof, it's a wonder we're all still on speaking terms.

To clarify, as rational adults, my husband and I realized there was no way we could ever afford to buy a house of our own if we kept paying out bills and only saving sporadically. Enter the 'move in with the grandparents plan' (I have to add, this was actually my husbands idea, just so I don't come across as still attached to the apron strings.) And thankfully, my Grandparent's have a big two-story house with two kitchens (I'm pretty sure contractors across the country would be mortified by this revelation) and we quietly moved all our belongings from a two-floor townhouse into the equivalent of a studio apartment.

I have to be totally honest, the first couple of weeks were stressful; cleaning everything (at both homes), reorganizing, decluttering, furniture placement, down-sizing; in short the logistics were overwhelming. But somewhere into the 2nd month a routine emerged and life is settling down to a new normal.

This new normal includes family dinners eaten on the couch (to be discontinued soon believe you me) vacuuming the hardwood floors like its a hobby, and just for myself, starting this blog. Baby girl now has a wonderful front and back yard to play in, not to mention the neighborhood park around the corner. In all the hecticness of life I find myself right back where I have always felt loved, comforted, cared for. This is exactly what I want my daughter to experience too. 

Whoever said "you can't go home again" never moved back in with their parents because honey, I'm living proof that you can (and actually enjoy it!)

Yes, it takes time to adjust. Yes, the move made me struggle with doubts about my ability to provide for my family and to live the life I envisioned for us. But I know this is right for us right now. God reassures me daily. Little lady reassures me as she insists on going to Gramma's room to watch Psy's Gangnam Style video on Youtube (yeah, that's a whole other story!) I know it deep in my gut when the lights are out, the heaters blasting and everyone's down for the night; when I am over come with peace. This is home.



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Saturday, March 16, 2013

CAEYC Conference 2013

CAEYC Conference 2013
I had the wonderful honor to go to this years California Education for Young Children Conference thanks to my fabulous job and Director. This years conference was at the San Jose Convention Center and adjoining Marriott Hotel. Not only did it span 3 days, included dozens of prestigious Early Childhood Education advocates and a crazy cool Expo, I got to enjoy the day with my awesome co- workers.
CAEYC Conference 2013
Granted, I didn't enjoy the 5am wake up call but it sure did set the tone for the rest of the day when my baby brain kicked in hard (read- realizing at the end of the day I hadn't closed my car door shut haha, read the program for Saturday instead of Friday, and it continued on in this vein ALL day.)
Friday's Keynote speaker was Patti Digh visit her blog here, you'll be glad you did! This lady entertained, inspired and encouraged a room full of half asleep educators and she did it with aplomb.
Unfortunately, I was only able to go to 3 workshops but my hands down favorite of the day was Messy Art for 2's and 3's with Anna Reyner and Danielle Monroy, MA. These ladies demonstrated creative, messy and fun art projects for young children using Colorations art supplies found here. Some of my favorite ideas are:
1. Using cheapy drop clothes as mural paper.
2. Foam paint used with paint rollers or hands and then 'polished' off with a rag- it dries instantly.
3. Liquid watercolor in a spray bottle- a good fine motor workout and a beautiful mist pattern emerges.
4. Making art scrolls out of paper with sticks/dowels/ Popsicle sticks rolled and hot glued or Tacky glued down.
5. Dyeing rock salt/ ice cream salt with liquid watercolor and using it in a sensory activity.
6. Reusing paper bags and crafting into books either by binder clips or a dowel entwined with a pipe cleaner.
All these crafts and more can be found on Anna Reyner's blog-seriously, check it out!

I hope to be a part of next years CAEYC Conference.  For more information visit their site
CAEYC Conference 2013 Anna Reyner




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Monday, March 11, 2013

Dating my Husband {First Date after Baby}

Kim Walker Smith concert
So technically there isn't a term for dating while married (but there should be! Any suggestions?) but tomorrow night for the first time since February 4, 2011 my husband and I will be going out on the town without Baby.   And yes, this is the first time I will have left my daughter for a night out with her Daddy.  And no, I don't feel like I've been putting my 'life" on hold either.  As an Attachment parenting- parent, I never felt it was right to leave her when we were so attached (har har) and thankfully my husband is understanding, but I digress. Now that she is weaned and beginning to sleep in her own toddler bed- mama's painting the town!

If you've never heard of the worship band Jesus Culture, you're seriously missing out.  They have the best songs about love, hope, inspiration, edification- I just can't say enough great things about them!  One of their singers, Kim Walker Smith is playing in San Francisco and we will be there!  Wheeeee!  Check it out http://www.jesusculture.com/stillbelieve/sanfrancisco/.  Not only are we going to be able to hear Kim's amazing voice, but we will also be meeting up with my husband's best friend and his wife from Sacramento.  They are an amazing couple raising two of  the cutest little girls.  We thank God for their company.

I'm also thankful for my wonderful mom who will be doing us the honor of watching Baby Girl as we get to enjoy our adult evening.  Thanks Mom!

Here's to a safe drive, a wonderful concert, great company, and a happy toddler spending time with Gramma!  Mommy is going out!

Kim Walker Smith Still Believe Tour

Kim Walker Smith Still Believe Tour


*I'd love to hear about your first Date night without Baby!  Please share.  Many thanks :)  


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Sunday, March 10, 2013

Spring Forward

I hope everyone remembered to set their clocks forward an hour (except Arizona- why is that?)  I am comforted that Spring is just waiting to begin and with it warmer weather (not that in my part of California is there really a big differential between seasons- I'm not complaining!)  And though I know this will wreck havoc on my daughter's nap schedule and consequently  her bedtime routine, I still look forward to it being lighter later and anticipating Summer.

Is it just me or does the time really start to accelerate once Baby is born?  I feel like the 2 years I've been blessed with parenting my daughter has snapped by.  Keeping with the warped speed of time, I have to start planning now what Summer plans will look like (roughly):


  1.  I have a little tumbler/ climber at home so I was wanting to get her into Gymnastics.  I don't have lofty dreams of Olympic Gold but a chance for socializing, play and exercise all rolled into one package is always a plus.
  2. The Big Event- Potty Training is nearing.  As a Preschool Teacher at a wonderful Christian School, I want my daughter to attend come August.  Any child can be enrolled by 2.5 years if the child is toilet trained and by jove I want that for her!  I'm very lucky to have not one but both Grandma's baby sitting throughout the week and I have prepared them for this transition.  Now if only stating my intentions to the toddler were that easy!
  3. The annual visit to the LA Family- ok, not much planning here really, it IS a yearly thing after all.
  4. Spend as much time outdoors as possible!

That last one won't be a problem, like I stated above, our weather is pretty constantly wonderful.  Everyone enjoy this fantastic gift of a day!  
Work it Mommy Spring Forward

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