Archive for January, 2012

Pepperoni Pizza Crescents

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012 by by

If your kids are picky eaters, raise your hand. Yup, that’s me with both hands up. If I had a third hand, that would be up too, since I have three picky eaters. If you have been a reader for any length of time, you already know that. So, when I find something that they will actually eat, I stick with it. One thing I discovered they love is crescents. You know, the kind in the tube. I have tried many variations from pigs in a blanket to peanut butter and chocolate crescents, and they always eat them. I was trying to think of more ways to fill a crescent and came up with a pepperoni pizza filling.  It was a hit!

Supplies You will need:
  • Tube of crescent rolls
  • Pizza Sauce
  • Mozzarella
  • Pepperoni



Date Night

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012 by by

Last Friday, date night coincided with Hayden’s tennis tournament.  By the time he was done, we decided it’d be easier to just take him with us to dinner and a movie.

Hayden was super-stoked about this stroke of good fortune until he realized something.

Crashing your parents’ date night means you actually have to be seen out in public.

With your parents.

It’s a double-edged sword, folks!

Valentine Heart Craft for Kids

Monday, January 23rd, 2012 by by

I wanted to get a jump on Valentines Day, because lately I seem to be surprised when holidays roll around. This year, I’m hoping to do handmade valentines for The Older’s classmates, and I thought about what would be easy and fun for him.

This seemed like an easy Valentine’s Day craft for preschoolers and older kids, so I set up The Younger and let her go to work to test my theory. Supplies are easy:

  • Glitter Glue
  • Tempera Paint
  • Construction Paper
  • Marbles
  • Plastic Cups (or other containers)
  • Box or Baking Dish or Bucket
  • Scissors


Why Sign Language Can Work for You and Your Infant & Toddler

Monday, January 23rd, 2012 by by

Today I am so excited to bring you this guest post from Kristy Davies, MS CCC-SLP. Kristy is a fellow speech language pathologist and is going to share some information on using sing language with babies and toddlers, specifically using American Sign Language to sign with them, something she and I are both very passionate about!

The use of sign language has grown in popularity over the past several years as parents begin to learn the great benefits of signing. Signing with your baby can provide you a new perspective on their thoughts and feelings and build more positive relationships. Signing with your toddler can empower their desire to communicate and be good ol’ fun!

Why sign with your child? Research has shown positive results using sign language with children to:

  • reduce frustrations (for both parents and children) & tantrums
  • increase social skills
  • increase joint attention skills
  • promote early communication
  • increase vocabulary skills
  • increase reading abilities and desire to read
  • increase visual attending skills
  • increase in cognitive development (higher IQs)
  • minimize “terrible two’s”

With that being, there are myths about signing with your infants and toddlers that is important to dismiss. (more…)


Smacksy Sunday Links

Sunday, January 22nd, 2012 by by
Bob and his Darth Vader luggage

A whole site of bicycle chic.

How to make Nutella “ice cream.” Yes, please.

And a puppy being greeted by a herd of cows.

Happy Sunday.

Turkey Noodle Soup

Saturday, January 21st, 2012 by by

Home made soup is the perfect dinner for a day like today! Last week, I roasted one of the turkeys that I got on sale after Thanksgiving. The turkey has provided us with meals for a week, and it only cost $13. Today, I had just enough turkey left for this soup, and I had frozen turkey stock that I had made from a previous turkey. Measurements are estimated, especially the herbs and spices. Please adjust the recipe to your taste! You can also add celery and onions with the carrots; I just didn’t have any today!

Turkey Noodle Soup:
8 cups turkey stock (or chicken stock)
3 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 1/2 cups-2 cups diced or shredded turkey
2 cups bow tie pasta (or whatever your shape preference)
1 tablespoon dried parsley (fresh would also be nice)
2 tsp  ground marjoram
2 tsp ground oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp celery seed
1/2 tsp ground mustard
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (more…)

Why I Do What I Do

Friday, January 20th, 2012 by by

I have taken on a lot of volunteer work lately, so much that my husband says that I am a “Professional Volunteer.” He’s probably right. I get a lot of slack for my meetings, phone calls, emails and such that go along with this, but the truth is, I enjoy it. I have posted a lot about being a stay at home mom and the challenges, the good things, the bad things…..and honestly, I wouldn’t change it. Are there times when I think maybe I should get a job? Of course. But then I know if I was working, I would wish I was staying at home again, so I know that for me, this is the best case scenario. I stay at home with the boys, and I work on projects that I feel strongly about as well. Do these projects take me away from the boys and the things I need to do at home? Yes. Does it get frustrating and overwhelming at times? YES! Am I going to stop? No way Jose. I get a lot of people that ask why I take on so much, and so here’s my answer.

I know I have mentioned it before, but honestly I am too lazy to go back and link and already putting things off by posting (hello procrastination…..), so I will just repeat. I quit working 2 weeks before I had Troy. I wanted to get everything in order and also didn’t want to just not show for work one day and that be it. Closure was needed, if that’s what you want to call it. I tried to keep up with my athletic training certification, personal training certification, and teaching license, but I knew it would be YEARS before I went back to work. It is very expensive to keep up with continuing education, licensure dues, membership dues, and such, so we decided that I was done. When the time came to go back, I would figure it all out. So, basically, I gave up everything to be a SAHM.

For months, I felt very lost. I loved being at home and not having to deal with working and raising a child, but I really was struggling. I was lonely, because no one else I knew was a SAHM. I joined a Mommy group, but it was a 45 min drive and just got to be too much. My attempts at starting up a group in my area failed, minus the fact that I made really good friends out of it. The group fizzled, and now we just get together when we have time. I could go through all the ways staying at home was and is amazing for me, but there was still something that I was always missing. When I started volunteering with certain groups and had things in my life that were not child related, it all came together. I just needed it for me, and so I began taking on lots of volunteer work and finally felt fulfilled. (more…)


Royal Icing Makes Kids Cookie Decorating Easy

Friday, January 20th, 2012 by by

Over the holidays, I made some festive-shaped gingerbread cookies. Noah and I decorated them together on Christmas Eve day. This is definitely an activity you should undertake with your child. It is so fun, it’s guaranteed to bring out the kid in you!

Years ago, I made and decorated cookies to give to colleagues at Christmas time. I packaged each large cookie individually in a clear treat bag, and I brought them to the school I worked at to hand them out with my Christmas cards. They didn’t look so pretty by the time I handed them out, since the icing melted onto the bags. This time I was determined to correct this problem.

I looked online to find out how to dry icing. Apparently, the only solution is something called “Royal Icing.” It is the only icing that dries or hardens. It is very simple to make. You can make it with raw egg whites, but this poses a very small risk of Salmonella (food poisoning). I did not wish to give the gift of Salmonella to anyone for Christmas, so I decided to do it the safer way, by substituting meringue powder. (more…)

To try again, or not to try again?

Thursday, January 19th, 2012 by by

As I always do after a loss, I’ve been questioning whether or not I want to risk going through another miscarriage. A good friend and I were talking about it last night, and I think I’ve decided.

I probably will risk it again. Chris really wants a living (biological) child, and it wouldn’t be very fair of me to flat out refuse that option. I couldn’t ask him to get snipped knowing how badly he wants a child, and I’m never doing hormonal birth control again.

The losses are hard on me, yes, but they’re hard on him too. After all he’s done for me, I can’t not take his feelings into consideration. Are his feelings more important? No. But, likewise, mine don’t outweigh his either. I have no right to take away his chance at a biological child.

That being said, I will continue to try (or at least not prevent) for a while still. Since I lost my left fallopian tube with this pregnancy, the risk of another ectopic is just the same as everyone else’s risk. At this point, the risk is the same as it was before we conceived the twins.

Thrifty Thursday – Saving on Housekeeping Using Pinterest

Thursday, January 19th, 2012 by by

Are you on Pinterest yet? I won’t go through a lengthy explanation of what it is or how it works, since most people have at least heard of it. Basically, it’s like a virtual bulletin board where you can “pin” cool ideas you find around the web. These ideas can then be shared with followers and users of the site. It’s a great place to go for any kind of inspiration you are looking for.  Warning: It is addictive and a bit voyeuristic, and you get to know a lot more about what all your friends are into. “Wow, Jane loves Star Trek, I never knew.”

Did you know that Pinterest is a great place to find money saving ideas as well as creative inspiration? I am excited to share some of my favorite Pinterest finds that are helping me save money around the house.

Homemade Cleaners – This is a great primer for learning how to make all sorts of household cleaners. I love that they are not only frugal, but a more natural alternative.