Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Book Review: Stories from Candyland

Stories from Candyland (Candy Spelling)
I know, I know...why was I even bothering to read this crap? But the truth is, after reading both of Tori Spelling's books and hearing about the terrible relationship she has with her mother, I was curious to hear the other side of the story.

Turns out, there wasn't too much to that other side. This book was 200 pages of blah. The only reason that I even bothered to finish was because the font was approximately 250 point and there were 10 pages of pictures in the middle...I finished the book off in 3 days of bus reading. I was hoping for some good Hollywood gossip about the Spellings life or at the very least, her providing some type of defense against the way that she has supposedly acted with Tori. Nope...nothing. She talked about her strained relationship with Tori & did make a few mentions of things, but certainly nothing to convince me that she was an innocent bystander in everything.

My suggestion is to skip going to Candyland & head to Mommywood instead, it was much better there :)


Monday, June 22, 2009

Hostess with the Mostess

I consider myself to be a pretty frugal person; I clip coupons, I wait until there's a major sale to buy clothes, we don't go out to eat a lot and we just watch what we spend overall.

However, if we had ridiculous amounts of money and nothing else to spend it on, I think I would put it toward hosting parties. Not just parties that entail grabbing a case of Miller Light & some burgers from Sam's Club...no, no...I'm talking full out theme parties, complete with fabulous decor and food to match the theme and fresh flowers and little details that everyone talks about for months to come.

For one day out of the year, I get to pretend that I'm an amazing party planner when the time rolls around for our annual Luau. The good thing about a Luau is that part of its charm is the fact that it's cheesy; I mean, what's a luau without some hula dancer and palm tree centerpieces?

Everything with the luau was fine & dandy...until today that is. Today I logged on to the DrBabyMamaDrama blog where she had a link to another blog, the Hostess with the Mostess. I clicked on this link & I was directed to a magical website.

My skin got tingly. My heart started racing. I might have even blacked out for a few seconds, I can't remember. It was like the mother ship was calling me home. This blog entails everything I would ever want to do for a party and then some. I quickly got overstimulated....what do I look at first? The birthday party themes for future reference? (leaning toward this theme for the 2nd birthday party) The baby shower ideas, in case I ever have to throw one again? Graduation party ideas for 17 years from now? Cocktail recipes to serve at the luau in super cute glasses??

It's on. Like Donkey Kong. I might not have the time to be able to step it up this year, but I'm bringing my A-game next year for the luau.

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father's Day to all of the daddies & daddies-to-be out there! We started the day off by going to the zoo with GG & Pappy (by the way, if you have kids & live anywhere near the zoo, get yourself a membership. I promise you, it's worth it.)



The highlight of the day for my parents was that Jake said GG and Pappy :) He's going through a language explosion right now, which is just amazing....new words this week include bike, baby, truck, teeth...and maybe more, I just can't remember right now.

We came home from the zoo and Brian opened his Father's Day gifts. Jake got him a collage mug with pics of them all over it and my parents went with a beach theme of a new chair and extra long towel. Jake did some product testing on the chair & decided that it was suitable for his own use.



Happy Father's Day to both of our dads as well, we love you!!!

Friday, June 19, 2009

A Shout-Out to the Siblings


Now that we're past the "Mom, he's/she's touching me...make him/her stop touching me!" part of the relationship with our siblings, Brian & I have grown to appreciate them. Here's a little shout out to Amy & Nate and a quick update with what they've been up to.

Amy just finished her first semester at SCAD (Savannah College of Art & Design), where she is majoring in graphic design/animation (sorry, I can't remember which one!). Next year, she'll be moving into a new apartment with some friends; for now, she's relaxing at home for the summer and working at the local movie theater (free movies when we go to visit in July, yay!)

Edit: Amy has also received all A's the past quarters at SCAD (we have some smart siblings!!)



Nate just finished up his 2nd year of law school at WVU, where I'm happy to report that he got straight A's this past semester. He is working a summer job for a law firm in Charlestown, WV and will return to Morgantown in August to finish out his last year of school.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Recipe: Creamy Chicken Pasta


Photo & recipe courtesy of kraftfoods.com

Creamy Chicken Pasta

1.5 cups whole wheat rotini pasta, uncooked (I used bowtie instead)
1 small bunch broccoli, cut into florets (about 3 cups)
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
1/2 cup fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 oz. (1/4 of 8-oz. pkg.) 1/3 Less Fat than Cream Cheese, cubed
1 cup Mozzarella Cheese, divided
2 tbsp Parmesan cheese

HEAT oven to 375ºF. Cook pasta in large saucepan as directed on package, adding broccoli for the last 3 min.

MEANWHILE, heat large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 3 min. or until no longer pink, stirring frequently. Stir in broth; simmer 3 min. or until chicken is done. Add cream cheese; cook and stir on low heat 1 min. or until cream cheese is melted. Stir in 1/2 cup mozzarella.

DRAIN pasta and broccoli. Add to chicken mixture; mix lightly. Spoon into 8-inch sq. baking dish; cover.

BAKE 15 min. or until heated through. Sprinkle with remaining cheeses. Bake, uncovered, 3 min. or until melted. Let stand 5 min.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Ba di di?


If you're a mom, do you ever wish you had some sort of magical baby translator that would tell you what your child was trying to say? "Ba di di" is a commonly heard phrase in our house; however, I have no idea what Jake is trying to say. Sometimes it sounds like a statement, other times like a question. It never seems to be consistent as to when he says it so that we could even figure it out. Please feel free to leave definition guesses in the comments section.

It seems like every few days, he says a new word, so I'm going to do my best to keep track of them on here (because let's be honest with ourselves....we all know that I will never remember to write them all the baby book that I swore I'd religiously keep up to date...typing is so much easier)

New words this week are: waffle, bus, PopPop, hi (usually drawn out, like "Hiiiiiii"), nana (for banana-and hopefully for the real Nana soon!) and please (which might be the cutest thing ever since it comes out as "peas")

He also tries so hard to say shoes and fish, but he gets caught up on the "sh" part of those words :)

Another new activity is singing...I have no idea what exactly he is singing, but it's so cute to watch him stack some blocks & sing a little song!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Lions and Tigers and...The In Laws?

It was a busy weekend for us....Brian's family came in for a visit and the weather cooperated for lots of fun outdoor time. We spent some time at the park....



And some time with a new wheelbarrow (Brian already has plans for putting Jake to work next weekend)....



We dressed the men up in matching hats for an excellent photo op....



We picked flowers....



And what's a weekend in our house without a trip to the zoo??



I'm not sure what came over Jake on Sunday, but it was the best trip to the zoo thus far. He stayed in his stroller nearly the entire time (even after we took him out so that he could walk around the aquarium, he then asked to get back in his stroller once we were done with that part. Let me state for the record that this has never happened...usually once we take him out, it's a fight to get him back in) and we made it through the whole zoo!

The polar bear swam right up to us...here was Jake's reaction (when he swam away, Jake frantically signed "more"):



They were having a "beach party" so Jake got a sneak peek of what our vacation will be like in August. Let's just say that I hope he gets used to his feet being in the sand between now & then...he was quite unsure of walking through it.



We had a great weekend, but it always goes too fast. (and Mondays are always painful) Thanks for visiting, Nana, PopPop & Aunt Amy...we had a blast!! :)

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Ready, Set, GO!

A quick video of Jake's new favorite game...clearly, he does not get his love of running from his mama. The 2nd video is filmed sideways, sorry :) he picks up the helicopters that fall from our tree and tosses them in the air.

video video

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Some cute stories :)

Just a few cute stories that made me smile that I wanted to share :)

*You may remember Dominic (aka-Dom the Bomb) from other daycare stories that have been previously posted...he and Jake are still school besties and spend a lot of time together. Last week when I picked him up, his teacher pulled me aside & said "I just have to tell you that earlier today, Dom was having a frustrating day when we told him that he couldn't do something, so he stomped off and threw a small fit in the corner of the room. Jake immediately stopped what he was playing with, watched for a minute, then went over, touched Dom's hair & said something in baby babble....whatever he said must have made him feel better, because Dom stopped crying, stood up & started playing again"

*Yesterday, his teacher informed me that he might have a little crush on a 1-year old girl, Chloe. She caught them canoodling in the sandbox....Jake had his arm around her. No one told me it would start this early.....

*Jake has 2 penguins....one is a smaller stuffed penguin and when you say "Jake, hug a penguin!" he grabs it, holds it to his chest & gives it a big squeeze. :) The other one is a toy penguin that you use as a punching bag and has 3 balls in the belly. He doesn't seem to grasp the concept that the balls don't actually come OUT of the belly and will point & say "ball? ball? ball! ball! ball?" repeatedly.

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