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Archive for April, 2010

The Week in Review Apr 30

The babe and I have had another busy and fun-filled week. We attended Story time at the library, relaxed at the beach with Raya and Jennifer, went through sunburn recovery, and even had a bit of a rough start to this Thursday as both her bottom molars struggle to the surface.

Then came Thursday evening when my baby started to radiate heat and refused to separate from her mama no matter how asleep I thought she was. She topped the charts on her first real fever EVER in her life at 102.5. Tylenol was given and her temperature dropped to a more reasonable 99.5.

It is now Friday morning when I try to finish this post, and without medication, her fever stands at 100.4 and I am torn about what to do. She will be receiving more Tylenol soon. If today wasn’t Friday, I’d be content to wait and observe her condition. I hate taking her to the doctor, and she doesn’t have any other sick symptoms. However, it is Friday, and that brings more anxiety into the picture when the pediatrician’s office closes this afternoon. As usual, I’ll wait until they come back from lunch to decide.

I’m a little disappointed that what was supposed to be a lighthearted recap of our happy week has turned into a very typical nervous mama post. However, I did start this blog to talk about what was on my mind, have found some amazing other moms in the blogosphere, and my daughter and her happiness are a big part of my own happiness. So I think of this as just another bump along the mommy road and know that we did have an awesome almost 2 weeks before she had any issue whatsoever, so I think we’re ending April on a happy note. I KNOW May is starting on a happy note, because it’s my BIRTHDAY on Sunday, my husband’s BIRTHDAY the following Saturday and then MOTHER’S DAY!! Festivities start tomorrow night with my birthday celebration during Rock Band. More on that later. 🙂

And we’ll close with a few pics from the beach this week. We brought out the sand toys!

Category: General  | Leave a Comment
Tackle It Thursday Apr 22

And tackle it I have! Not just today, but all this week! Last week I made myself a new chore schedule to try and ease my anxieties about not getting everything done that should be. There have been a few bumps in the road, but for the most part I have followed it and had time to do other things! Hooray!

Also this week I have made strides toward overcoming some of my introverted homebody-ness. On Monday the babe and I went to Story Time at the library and to Einstein Bagel. On Tuesday, we made a hour drive to New Smyrna Beach to play in the sand and splash in the COLD waves for a bit. Just Aly and I. No one else was available and I did not let me anxieties talk me out of going. So what if I had a heartattack or two on the way there, we had a great time once we got there and a whiny, but calm ride home. We’re going again next week with my friend, Raya, and hopefully we’ll be out there a little longer to avoid some of the whining during the trip home. On Wednesday we made the half hour trip to Lake Mary to go to the “big” Publix which is right next door to Target (Dangerous!) and met my friend Jennifer for lunch. That Publix has the most awesome deli ever. Aly and I split a chicken quesadilla and broccoli cheddar soup. They had great specialty sub and pasta salad options, but most of them contained soft cheeses that the babe isn’t really supposed to eat yet. Another time for those, and the gelato they offer as well! 🙂 Today I was hoping for a quick trip to the neighborhood Publix for some weekend food options. However, Publix doesn’t have any great sales that I can see. I’ve got a ton of canned goods and pasta, does anyone have suggestions for fave vegetarian recipes??? Tomorrow I think I’m going to get Aly’s spring/summer pictures taken at Sears, but I’m not 100% on that. We’ll see how I feel about it as the day goes on. It really takes two people to help with clothing and set changes and my mom isn’t available til nap time, so we wouldn’t be able to go until about 4 and by then it’s time to head out for family dinner. I may have to brave pictures on my own tomorrow morning if I really want to get them done.

That’s been my week, and why I haven’t been blogging as much. A new chore schedule that allows me time to get out of the house AND do some me activities has me a pretty happy camper. Although I am definitely more tired when we do more! 😉 I’ll leave you with a few pictures from our beach trip and don’t forget to let me know about any vegetarian recipes I can make for dinner over the next few days!

Category: meme  | 2 Comments
UBP10 After Party Apr 16

I, like many others I’m sure, am very relieved that the Ultimate Blog Party Mclinky will remain active, because I became overwhelmed about halfway through the week trying to visit as many blogs as possible. It reminded me a lot of my behavior at a real party when I reach the halfway point and wonder, “May I please pause the party, go home and recover for awhile, and return to this good time at a later date?” With the UBP, I CAN!!! I visited approximately 65 new blogs (and I promise to check out more!) and while I like them all, it is impossible to keep up with all of them in the way that I would like. Three of the blogs that have already made my blogroll are: The Mommyologist, The Amateur Kitchen, and Nolie’s Place.

Who doesn’t love The Mommyologist? I mean really, with Mom Sexy happening April 26th, that’s a blog I need to be reading. We ARE all sexy, whether we feel it or not. And while I never had the opportunity to anticipate the arrival of What the Heck? Wednesdays, it is something I might be using to help me express some of the smaller frustrations that might be piling up. Everyone needs a way to release their negative emotions before they explode.

I love to cook, so I definitely will be keeping up with The Amateur Kitchen. Her description says it all, “I find recipes so you don’t have to. I cook them. I photograph them. I taste them. And then I tell you about it.” I know I read a lot of recipes in magazines and wonder if that strange ingredient combination actually works in the dish. Now I won’t be wondering any more when I re-create recipes from The Amateur Kitchen.

Nolie’s Place is a blog that kinda makes me feel like I’m at home, if that makes any sense. There aren’t any flashy ads or a thousand reviews to wade through before you get to her real thoughts and feelings content. Everything is written very cleanly and the emotion of the post really shows through. If you read this, I’m sorry it’s not a glowing review of your blog, but it does give me a warm and fuzzy feeling to check in on you. 🙂

Those are just a few of the people I’ve visited from this year’s Ultimate Blog Party and I hope to visit and connect with more in the near future. However, it won’t be today, because I spent the day taking care of my 15 month old daughter AND a friend’s 5 year and 18 month old sons. Oh my, what a shock that was, but not a story for this post. Maybe another day. So for now I’ll be relaxing in my recliner with a heating pad and enjoying the last bit of a quiet Friday night. Good night everyone, it’s been a great UBP.

P.S. Oh, and this is one of the cutest kid pics I’ve seen this past week from Adventures in All Things Food. While the blog didn’t make my top three, this pic has made me smile every time I’ve visited this blog.

Category: partytime  | 2 Comments
Social Ineptitude Apr 13

I have no idea if that is a real phrase or not, but it does aptly describe me in most social situations, and I thought it was fitting subject matter while the Ultimate Blog Party is still going.

I am terrible at interacting with people. I am often inappropriate or sometimes incompetent at the way I handle people and situations “on the fly.” To the people who have received this behavior, I’m sorry. It’s something I will probably be working to correct for the rest of my life. Please know that I very rarely intend for my comments to be derogatory or degrading, but that my mouth says things before my brain gets to re-evaluate them and make sure they are the appropriate responses.

Merriam Webster defines ineptitude as the quality or state of being inept, and if you follow the link provided in the definition to inept, some synonyms provided are unfit, foolish, bungling, and awkward. I most identify with unfit and awkward. So much so that the thought of attending a social situation raises my anxiety level to a dangerously high place, and if it’s just me and/or my daughter that will be attending, I often find reasons not to attend. This is detrimental to myself and especially my daughter because we miss out on so many things because mommy’s afraid of looking foolish in public. One of my goals for the year (I’ll say for the year, but as I mentioned before, this is probably going to take quite a few years to really overcome) is to overcome my overly introverted personality so that I can create and enjoy more life experiences with my daughter and my husband.

While I might have serious anxiety issues about attending other people’s events, I LOVE to host parties. I like to organize them, cook for them, and then just chill while my friends enjoy the fruits of my labor. I like picking themes for the food that sometimes turn into themes for the kitchen or house. In fact, in my ideal stay at home mom world, I would have different kitchen linens and decorations for each holiday and season that comes along. I actually have a great majority of the linens and am working on decorations and the ability to not procrastinate in putting them out until it’s almost too late, like I did for Easter this year. We were decorated for Easter for all of… 3 days? The spring linens are still out, but the table is back to bare wood and I put all the egg decorations away. Any ideas for spring decorations? I seem to skip most of spring and go straight for the summer stuff, even though that doesn’t officially start until June and we have birthdays, Mother’s Day, and Memorial Day before that.

My social ineptitude has also played a large role in my love for blogging and the blogging communities. Blogging is a way for me to express myself and offer my opinion to the world for others to consider, whether that’s one person or 100. Ideally my input will have an impact on someone’s life and then it is a mutually beneficially relationship. Blogs have also plays a crucial role in easing my anxiety and frustration at being a new mom. There are others out there who feel the way I do! I am not alone, and therefore not a horrible parent for feeling and thinking some of the things I do. I love my daughter, but there are times I wish she could amuse herself for hours on end so I could reclaim some of my pre-baby activities with ease. Scrapbooking is a big one, because Aly wants to help and things get destroyed and don’t get finished. Another is being a real raider in World of Warcraft. I love raiding, but when raids require a minimum of a two hour commitment and can run (almost literally) all night, it’s just not possible for me to take care of everything I have to and commit to that. Luckily my guild allows me to raid when I can with minimal repercussions.

What pre-child activities do you miss the most? For those of you with older children, how many have you been able to reclaim as they get older?

Party On! Apr 11

Normally I wouldn’t write about the meals I make (I’m trying to get a separate blog together for that), but I just had to share this one. When I was blog-hopping as part of the Ultimate Blog Party ’10, I came across Donielle’s Italian Cream Cheese Chicken Casserole. It sounded fantastic, so I picked up the ingredients at the store and vowed to make it for dinner this week. The opportunity came quickly when I found out my friend, Jennifer, would be joining us for dinner this evening. Perfect! Comforting casserole for dinner.

I opened the Word file where I had saved the recipe and started making new recipe notes so that I could cut the recipe roughly in half. Then my creative cooking brain cells took over. I have a bad(?) habit of not following recipes as they’re written, but constantly adding, subtracting, and substituting ingredients to make them fit my vision, and this recipe was no different.

I used Barilla Plus rotini, substituted peas for broccoli (since surprisingly I didn’t have any already in the freezer), added sun-dried tomatoes, used 1/3 less fat cream cheese, and used turkey stock instead of chicken broth because I had some homemade left in the fridge. I also added a crunchy topping with approximately 1/3 cup of panko bread crumbs and ¼ cup freshly grated asiago cheese. Oh, and I used McCormick Italian Herb seasoning grinder instead of the Italian dressing mix.

It was delicious, and even my 15 month old inhaled it. Thank you, Donielle! 🙂

Category: partytime  | Leave a Comment
Ultimate Blog Party ‘10 Apr 08

Ultimate Blog Party 2010

Hello fellow party goers! Welcome to my lil spot on the big world wide web. My name is Erin, and although I am usually the shy one at events that I’m not hosting (more on that in a future blog post), I am going to do my best to create a fun-filled party atmosphere here during the UBP.

What's a party without food and a few balloons?

Oh yeah, and presents too! 😛

I am new to blogging, my blog just went live in March. I am first and foremost a stay at home mom for my beautiful 15 month old daughter Alyson. In addition to all things mom, I also enjoy all things FOOD and NUTRITION. One day I hope to go back to school to become a Registered Dietitian. Reading and World of Warcraft round out my list of personal likes. I also like when my husband can tear himself away from both his school work (he’s working on his doctorate in Business Administration) and his work work and we can spend time together as a family. Any activity that brings us together is a good one. We recently got to spend the day at Epcot with our daughter as part of our anniversary weekend at Walt Disney World.

Let’s see… Other random things about me… I was born, raised, and still live in Central Florida and am not sure I could survive in a place that doesn’t have theme parks and beaches all within an hour’s drive. I have a Bachelor of Science degree in the Management of Information Systems, but I discovered that wasn’t my passion in life and one day hope to pursue another degree. I am a Certified Pharmacy Technician and am really proud of that. Even though my previous employer didn’t think it was a stepping stone to bigger better things, I do, and know that there are bigger, better pharmacies out there who do as well.

Please feel free to peruse my blog and leave constructive comments and criticisms.

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Almost forgot to list my prize choices! There are a ton of great giveaways going on during UBP, but my top 3 choices are:

#71 $50 Bear Bucks Build A Bear Workshop gift card (Always a favorite place to visit at the mall!)

#15 $15 Disney Store gift card

#83 Disney Mickey 5-in-1 Tasty Baker by Pop Art (My husband grew up a Disney kid, so this will be a house favorite!)

And if those are already claimed, any of the following would be great to acquire as well:

32, 107, USC3, USC15, USC32, 49, 25, 38, 48, USC41, 61, 37

Category: partytime  | 25 Comments
Home Sweet Germy Home Apr 06

An odd thing has happened since the birth of my daughter. Someone is ALWAYS sick. My husband has been sick four times since Christmas, I’ve been sick three times, and my daughter has been on a constant roller coaster ride of stuffiness and stomach issues. Now, many of Aly’s issues are caused by teething and my husband’s by allergies (which is a chronic problem with him), but what’s causing mine? I do have some allergy issues, but it’s usually an annoyance more than anything else. We’ve been eating healthier and the house is always in ok shape clean-wise because I’m home all day constantly cleaning up anything that Aly might decide to put in her mouth. Why the change in my immune system? I used to have an immune system made of steel. I worked in pharmacy for four years and interacted with sick people all day long. I rarely took sick days. I feel like my body is letting me and my daughter down. I spent most of the day today holding down the couch watching cartoons with Aly. She needs more activity in her life. I’m very excited for tomorrow because it’s “water day” with the boys. We’ll be turning on the cool kiddie sprinkler and splash pool and having a blast. I’m just crossing my fingers that we both feel well enough and have the energy to do so.

How do you keep yourself well physically, mentally and emotionally?

Category: General  | Leave a Comment
You Count Calories? How Horrible!! Apr 05

Something along those lines is what I hear every time I mention to someone that that is my husband’s and my method for losing weight this year. Other often heard phrases are, “It’s too time consuming!” and “That’s not the way to make sure you’re eating a healthy diet!” Both of these statements can be true. It is time consuming to determine how many calories we will be putting into our mouths at any given time, but it also forces us to stop and seriously consider every single item that goes into our bodies. Do we need those calories? Case in point, my old family recipe for coleslaw. The recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of oil. I eliminated this by accident a few years ago after forgetting to add it, and now my mother has removed it from hers because there is no difference in taste without the oil. So why should I put those extra calories and fat into my body? Save those calories for something better, whether it’s extra dessert or a second helping of potatoes.

The other statement about not being the way to make sure we’re eating a healthy diet? I think I already explained it. When I removed the oil from the coleslaw dressing, it was replaced with an extra serving of potatoes. A vegetable, a member of the 4 basic food groups has replaced a fat and I’m happy with it. Now, this is not always the case, but this is one of several good examples. No matter what your dieting method, any time you make a conscious decision to swap one unhealthy thing for a healthier item, or just in hopes of another item, you have made a healthier decision about your diet.

After people get past their initial inhibitions about calorie counting, the next question is HOW we do it. We both prefer the hand-written method, with some help from The Daily Plate, and make use of scrap paper or the refrigerator white board to keep track of our daily caloric intake. We also have an Excel spreadsheet we use to keep track of our weight loss and caloric intake, but it’s nothing fancy, just a record keeping tool. For those of you constantly on the go who like the hand written method, Five Star makes 2 and 3 subject notebooks that have pockets in their dividers. In these pockets, you can cut out the Nutrition Facts from favorite packaged foods or new items recently discovered and keep them so you can also keep track of fats, proteins, or whatever else your heart desires. They are also available in larger sizes (like 8.5×11) so they fit very easily into purses or your bag of choice. You could also use a planner style notebook and keep the cutouts in a pencil bag. That should make you feel super young. Remember having your Lisa Frank pencils and markers in one in, like, 5th grade?? 🙂

That’s my rant on calorie counting, and I’ll be sharing more food knowledge as I learn it. I’m excited to have the time and resources to really learn about nutrition.

What’s your favorite food substitution?

Category: McFattyMonday  | One Comment