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Archive for June, 2010

Last night was very….well it was very something! It had some good moments, but mostly not good moments!

The hubby had to work all day and then in the evening. We only got to spend less than one hour as a family in between jobs! Neither Little Miss or I liked this! She cried as he left and crawled to the door. A good thing: when he got home she woke up and cuddled him. It was adorable, the highlight of my night!

As far as dinner went, nothing sounded good. I made some homemade cornbread, it was delicious. I hate half a pan of cornbread and some cantaloupe, probably lacking some keep nutrition in that meal. But at least I enjoyed it and didn’t want to throw it up!

Then we get to bedtime, the most dreadful part of the day. Little Miss actually went down seamlessly, and a half an hour EARLY! She was so tired. But, 20 minutes later: awake and crying. When I went in there she was trying to put her sassy (pacifier) back into her mouth with no success. I helped and laid her back down. She laid down with no trouble and fell asleep. But, this kid is a light sleeper. I stuck around for a few seconds to make sure she was asleep. Her eyes popped open in 3 seconds. We continued this for 45 minutes! I finally got tired of standing/squatting next to the crib so I moved to the bed only a few feet away. She did not approve of this move. She didn’t need to hold me or hear me sing or anything, she just wanted me close. She stood up and let me know how much she did not like the move. But, I stayed because I was too tired to stand/squat next to her for another 45 minutes. After who knows how long, I finally decided that she was not sleeping on her own, so I scooped her up to bring her to our bed where I wouldn’t have to fight her anymore, or at least I could do it laying down.

On the way to our bedroom, I needed to go to the bathroom (which happens A LOT when you are pregnant). So, we made a pit stop. As I go to flush, my lovely daughter drops her night time stuffed animal right into the toilet! YUCK! I was so upset. I grabbed it out and threw it in the sink (where it still remains) to be cleaned later.

Once we finally made it to the bed, it took over an hour of wiggling and rolling for sleep to actually come to that beautiful little girl. It was so exhausting. Then she slept for less than one hour and woke up SCREAMING. I mean she was letting me know that she was unhappy. At this point it is only 10. She wanted to be nursed, but I am trying to cut down the night time nursing. Because 5 times a night is just too much for this preggo. What happened next? We both balled our eyes out. My crying actually had a bit of a calming effect, but not for long. I finally gave in after 15 minutes of holding her and sobbing. She ate and fall asleep happy soon after.

Hubby came home and I was able to share our evening’s events. When we went into bed our little girl woke up and cuddled with her papa. It was adorable! Then, she refused sleep again. And screamed and wiggled and kicked. And then tooted! twice, really big! It is so hard to tell when she is acting fussy because she wants us, doesn’t want to go to sleep, or has painful gas. I really cannot wait until she is talking!

Here is hoping that tonight goes better!

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I don’t know. And, I am such a slacker that I am not even going to look it up! Teaching myself French has been a challenge. I have been using books that I found at a used bookstore: an old grammar text book, a dictionary, and a verb book. So, it has pretty much been on the fly. Finding time to learn has also been a challenge with a Little Miss demanding my full attention a majority of the day and chores demanding the rest of it! But, I was determined to persevere. I want my children to be taught a second language with ease. However, pregnancy changes a lot of things. I am exhausted! I mean really, sleep is what I want to do most of the time. By the time I get to the point during the day where I can actually crack open a book, one in a foreign language is just not going to work!

So, au revoir French. Maybe we will meet again in a little while.

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When I first saw this recipe I was intimidated. I thought it was too long and complicated. It actually took me over a year before I tried it. The first time that I made it I was finished with everything, including cleanup, in less than 15 minutes. Once I was finished I had enjoyed making it so much that I just wanted to do it again. This stuff lasts a long time too. It makes about 2 gallons of laundry soap, and at 1/2 cup per load you wont have to make it very often.

Tools required:

medium saucepan not to be used for preparing food after used to make laundry soap

grater (same rules apply about food)

large spoon (same as above)

3/4 c measuring cup (same as above)

bucket

containers to put it in (we use the “party pail” 1 gallon ice cream containers, makes 2 of these)

Ingredients:

1/2 bar Ivory soap

3/4 c washing soda (not baking soda!)

3/4 c borax

water

1. Put 6 c water in the saucepan. Grate the 1/2 bar of soap over the water and heat until the soap dissolves. Add3/4 c washing soda and 3/4 borax. Stir until dissolved.

2. Pour 4 c hot water into a bucket. Add the soap mixture and stir. Add 1 gallon plus 6 c water to the mixture and stir.

3. Pour the mixture, which is completely liquid,  into the containers and seal with the lids.

4. The soap needs to rest over night for 24 hours. It will look  gel like, this is perfect! Make sure to get both liquid and gel substance in every load. Use just 1/2 cup of soap for every load.

This is what it should look like the next day. It smells so great!

Happy washing!

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Bagels have been sounding so good to me lately. So, I searched to see if I could make some from scratch! I came across this recipe, and tried it out.

I made a few substitutions. I used White Whole Wheat flour from Bob’s Red Mill and I used a squirt of honey instead of sugar. I did not do the egg wash, I sprayed them with a little cooking spray. Which, I also used instead of parchment paper. I guess I did a lot of things differently, but they turned out great! Check them out:

The whole wheat white flour gave them a rich flavor. We sliced and toasted ours and add some butter. They were scrumptious!

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Ok, I know that this is terrible for you, but it is the only thing that I want to eat! The whole time I am making it I say “eww, I can’t believe that I want to eat this!” I don’t like pig products, I don’t like fatty things like gravy, this is so not me! But, the belly is speaking and sausage gravy it is!

Ingredients:

ground sausage

flour

milk

biscuits (I used store bought because I was too hungry to make homemade)

Get your biscuits cooking while you make the gravy. Brown the amount of sausage you want, I did about a third of the package. Then remove the sausage from the pan, leaving the grease behind (so gross I know, but that is what makes it taste so good). There should be about 2 to 3 tablespoons of grease in the pan, if there is more than that discard some. Add an equal amount of flour, 2 to 3 tablespoons, stirring continuously. Keep the  burner on medium to medium high, slowly pour over the milk, about a cup. Keep stirring while the gravy cooks and becomes thick, it may take a little while, just keep stirring. Once your gravy becomes thick add the sausage back and voila you have sausage gravy!

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Here are a few tips on saving some money when doing laundry:

1. Making your own detergent. This is so easy to do, very inexpensive, and makes a ton. The next time I make it (in a few months) I will post the recipe and pictures, for now just do an online search and you will find several different methods.

2. Use cold water for wash and rinse. Over a year this will save a lot in the cost of heating water.

3. Only wash full loads. Seriously, full loads!

4. Hang everything dry, well almost everything. Our sheets are the only thing we don’t hang dry because they are too big to fit on our balcony. We have two folding drying racks that we place on our balcony or, if the weather is bad, set in our living room. They are a little expensive, but the drier is one of the top energy using appliances so it was worth the up front cost. If you have a backyard hang a clothes line and get some good clothes pins.

If you do not have a washer and dryer in your home here are a few tips for you:

1. Check around local laundromats to see if they run specials on certain days of the week. Such as $.50 off double loads on Tuesdays. Then do your laundry on the “special” days.

2. Hang dry, this will save you at least a dollar a load. But, usually the dryers aren’t they great and require a second go round which saves another dollor. (see above for more details)

3. Hand wash. In our last apartment we used a Wonder Wash (counter top crank washing machine) to wash our clothes. We purchased it to wash the cloth diapers so we didn’t have to pay an arm and a leg in laundry every other day. It is simple but does require more time and effort than putting your clothes in a machine and walking away. I will post more on our Wonder Wash another day.

Happy laundering!

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Today I remembered many things about pregnancy. I remembered that it is not glamorous. I remembered that I had a cold for almost 3 months! I do not want to go through that again. So, I am taking action now. I am giving the apartment a deep, deep clean and then (hopefully) I am going to stay on top of it and keep it that way. I know that this will not prevent me from getting sick, but it might help and I am all for that.

I began tonight with the floors of the kitchen, entrance, and bathrooms. I swept and then really wished for a mop, so I wouldn’t have to scrub on my hands and knees. Then I looked up and saw a swifer-floor-cleaner-thing-a-ma-bob which I didn’t even know that I had. I investigated and found that I even had 2 of the pads you stick on there to clean. I was ecstatic! I sprayed the floor with my favorite all purpose disinfectant spray: vinegar and water, and went to town. My floors are brilliantly clean. I think that they are actually making a twinkling sound!

Then I thought, I need to make a reusable pad for this mop! So, I intend to do that. I am going to check out my stash of rags and see if I have anything in the right size. Depending on the material I may need to make it a few layers thick. If so I will just hop to the sewing machine and stitch it lengthwise in the middle and then a quarter of the way on each side and then on the ends, essentially quilting the pieces together. I may also try one of the cloth diapers that we used as burp rags made out of birds eye material, essentially gauze. They are already three layers in the middle and might even be the right size!

Hopefully all of my house will be twinkling soon. Although I am predicting that once I have made a clean sweep I will turn around and it will be undone! Tis the life of a 10 month old!

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