Friday, March 30, 2012

Happy Birthday Littlest


Littlest, you bring your family such pure joy. You are by far the most affectionate boy we know. You are infectious and delightful in almost everything you do. The expressions you make and the phrases you say are so awesome. We actually wish there was a way to constantly be recording you just to have those memories forever.

We love you so much. Happy birthday!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Oldest's Baptism



Remember a couple of weeks ago when we had our mono/strep saga? It all happened just days before we were to share a special day with our Oldest. We had been planning and preparing for his baptism day for our church.

We were worried that this illness was going to put things off. We had family coming/already there. Then of course there was the whole Bean was coming soon and when would we reschedule.

Luckily with a lot of prayer Oldest's recovered quickly from his illness and he was able to still participate in his special day on March 3rd. He was baptized by his dad. We were also able to have a lot of family members there to share in this day with him. Sadly Middle had to stay home with a family friend because he was just days behind Oldest in the sickness department.

Oldest was a trooper even though he was still a bit tired. We were so proud of him for being baptized. We know, like us, he will always remember this day.


Gramps and Oldest

Gramps, Nana, and Oldest

Aunt Kenzie and Oldest

Papa, Gram, and Oldest

The Family minus Middle

Those who came but were not photographed:

Aunt Natalie
Aunt Melissa and Uncle Scott
Uncle Kirk
Richelle

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Wipes Case Tutorial

While we are on break cuddling and snuggling Bean, 
I thought I would share some of the things
I did to prepare for him to come.

Enjoy!


Remember my diaper bag accessories from yesterday.

Well here is the super fast and easy wipes case cover tutorial.

You will need:

1 piece of fabric measuring 10" x 6 1/2"
2 pieces measuring 10" x 4"
biased tape
coordinating thread


First attach the biased tape to the top edge of both smaller pieces.


It will look like this when you are done.


Then with like sides facing, pin on smaller piece to the larger piece. Make sure the biased tape edge is in the middle.

Pin the other small piece on top of the larger piece, overlapping on top of the already pinned piece.


Sew all around the edges with 1/4" seam allowance. Turn right side out.

Fill your plastic wipes case and then slip the case into your cover.


See...how easy was that? Super duper easy. Grab the coordinating changing pad and some teeny tiny diapers and you are ready to go.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Changing Pad and Wipes Case Cover Tutorial part 1

While we are on break cuddling and snuggling Bean, 
I thought I would share some of the things
I did to prepare for him to come.

Enjoy!

 

So I found this oh-so-stinkin'-cute handbag and immediately decided it was going to be my new diaper bag. I have used the same $10 diaper bag for all three of the older boys. It has definitely seen better days. I decided that I could splurge a little on this happy little owl bag for this last baby. PLUS I can use it as a regular bag when Bean is old enough not to have an arsenal of baby supplies toted everywhere we go.

The bag is  Kate Landry bag...not like I know what that means...hahaha. I got it HERE.

Since this isn't meant to be a diaper bag I decided I needed a couple of accessories for inside the diaper bag.

I made a changing pad and a wipes case cover.


Originally I made the wipes case to simply hold loose wipes. I lined the sucker with vinyl and everything. ALAS, the moisture from the wipes still leaked through a little and the outside fabric got wet. The good news is that the little wipes pouch perfectly pockets a small wipes case. So wipes went into the case, case went into the fabric cover, and fabric stayed dry. 

Today I am going to show you how to make the changing pad. Tomorrow I will share the simple wipes case cover.

What you will need:

2 rectangles of coordinating fabric, 17" x 13"
piece of vinyl, 17" x 13"
biased tape, either homemade or store bought
velcro
thread in coordinating colors


used this tutorial for biased tape from MADE.


First iron inside fabric into thirds, you can see not evenly. The middle should measure about 7" across. 4" on the one side and 6" on the other. Fold it right side up and into itself...like it will be once it is assembled.


Lay this fabric inside the outside fabric with wrong sides facing. then iron the outside fabric following the inside already ironed folds.


Unfold. Place the vinyl onto the top of the inside fabric, the outside fabric should be directly under the inside fabric. Again, wrong sides facing. Pin the vinyl in place. When you pin the vinyl in place, pin as little as possible because the vinyl will not hide the holes.


Once the vinyl is pinned in place, sew the vinyl, the inside, and the outside fabric together by sewing directly in the folds. So you will sew in two places. I used a thread that coordinated with the biased tape. Sorry, no picture of this step...oops.


Next, place the one piece of velcro to the the inside fabric on top of the vinyl, but not through to the outside fabric.

Match placement of the other velcro piece to the outside fabric. Pin to just the outside fabric.


Sew in place (hey now you can kind of see where I sewed in the folds...)


Now take your biased tape and attach all the way around the edges.


Once the biased tape is sewn completely in place...you are done.


Now it is all ready to throw in the diaper bag. Now I am all prepared to diaper a little bum.

How cute are these diapers?!?




Okay tomorrow I will show you how to whip this case out. Super easy.


Sunday, March 25, 2012

In a Nutshell: Meet Bean


Meet Bean. He is just the most awesome Little Man. We LOVE him. Love, love, love him.

He came quick and as easy as labor can be. He has been a pretty easy baby since then...yes I know it has only been 4 days, but I am being grateful for every second of easiness.

Before he came, I might have been heard saying over and over again, "This baby is HUGE. He is going to be by far the biggest baby we have had."

Uh, FALSE.

He is our smallest at a teeny tiny 7lbs 9oz. Say what? I had a baby under 8 lbs...who knew it was possible.

We took some photos at the hospital. His very first photo shoot. I figured it would be okay with all of you guys if I took up a whole post to show him off.

So meet Bean...the new love of our lives...













Thanks for all the sweet comments and all the love that you have given over 
my whole pregnancy. We are excited he is finally here and are looking
forward to this time to get to know and love our newest Little Man.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

A Pinteresting Saturday: Car Seat Cover

While we are on break cuddling and snuggling Bean, 
I thought I would share some of the things
I did to prepare for him to come.

Enjoy!


 The week before Bean's scheduled arrival I was going a little stir crazy. I hammered out some last minute errands and projects. I had put making a car seat cover on my "if I have time and energy to sew before baby comes" project list.

I had even pinned this idea awhile ago:

 



Once I found my diaper bag I searched through my existing stock pile of fabrics to see if I had anything that would coordinate. I had decided I was only going to do this project if I didn't have to spend more money. So when I found plenty of fabric options I got to work.

Ironically I didn't really use my pinned tutorial. I morphed some projects and then just kind of went by the seat of my pants. This is really easy project to whip together and just do.

I used on main fabric for the exterior, but then I played with several different fabrics for the interior.


I am super excited how it turned out. I am sure Bean will enjoy the bright and happy colors of the inside. Mom will appreciate the protection offered from germy hands and cold winds.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Freezer Meals

While we are on break cuddling and snuggling Bean, 
I thought I would share some of the things
I did to prepare for him to come.

Enjoy!



For the first time EVER, I actually prepared in the meal department for after baby comes home.

I actually made some freezer meals.

I have not been a big fan of the idea of freezer meals. Probably because I don't like reheated or leftover food that much. However, I came across the idea of making crock pot freezer meals. Now that seemed not only doable in the prep department, but also enjoyable in the eating department.

So I gathered up some recipes. I even ended up making a few casseroles...fingers crossed they don't fit into the leftover category.

Then I bought all the groceries.

Then on a Saturday afternoon, hubby and I prepared and assembled everything.

Here are the meals in our freezer just waiting to be made and eaten.

Chicken and Salsa Flautas
Orange Chicken
Cafe Rio Crockpot Chicken
Teriyaki Chicken
Spaghetti Sauce and Meatballs
Sweet and Tangy Meatballs
Taco Soup
Cheesy Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole


I gathered my recipes from several places. Some were family favorites that we have made forever. Some were from freezer meal links. Some were adapted to be made a freezer meal. Oh and the spaghetti sauce and meatballs was simply thrown together with freezer meatballs and our favorite jar sauce...EASY.


When you are assembling the meals, mark the freezer bags first with instructions and date made. Place in the meat. Then add the other ingredients. Lay flat on the counter to let out the air and seal. You will want them to be flat for easy freezing and storage. For all of the recipes, pull out the bag or casserole the night before to allow them to thaw. Thaw in fridge of course.

Here is a list of the recipes:

Chicken and Salsa Flautas
adapted from glue gun annie


2 chicken breasts, shredded
1/2 cup favorite salsa
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 tsp cumin
10 small flour tortillas

Mix everything but tortillas in a bowl. Spread filling evenly between the tortillas. Roll the tortillas tightly and place seam side down on a cookie tray and cover with plastic wrap. Freeze for 1-2 hours. Once frozen place in a gallon freezer bag. Label and put in freezer.

When ready to eat, cook them in a 350 oven for 15-25 minutes. Until golden brown and cooked through.

Orange Chicken (Crockpot)
fake ginger

2-3 chicken breasts, cut in bite-sized chunks
1/2 Tablespoon kosher salt
6 oz frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
3 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
3 Tablespoons ketchup

Put chicken pieces in a gallon freezer bag. Mix the rest of the ingredients in a small bowl. Mix until well combined. Pour sauce into bag over the chicken. Seal the bag.

When ready to eat, cover and cook in a slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours. Serve with white or brown rice.

Cafe Rio Crockpot Chicken
crumbs and chaos

2-3 chicken breasts
1 cup Zezty Italian dressing
1 ranch dressing packet
1/2 Tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 Tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 Tablespoon chili powder

Add day of 1/2 cup water

Put chicken breasts into a gallon freezer bag. Mix other ingredients (except water) in a small bowl. Pour liquid mixture over chicken in the bag. Seal. Mark the date on the bag. Freeze.

When ready to eat, place in slow cooker. Add water. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Serve with tortillas and taco toppings.

Teriyaki Chicken (Crockpot)
ring around the rosies


4-5 carrots cut into chunks
1 red onion cut into chunks
2 cans of pineapple chunks, undrained
2 tsp minced garlic
4 chicken breasts
1 cup favorite teriyaki sauce

Add day of: 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce

Place chicken in gallon freezer bag (you can split this up between two bags if you aren't feeding a small army of food inhalers). Place the rest of the ingredients into the bag. Freeze.

When ready to eat, add 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce and cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4. Serve with rice.

Sweet & Tangy Meatballs (Crockpot)


1 bag of frozen meatballs (aprox 30)
1 jar of grape jelly
1 bottle of favorite bbq sauce

Mix everything in bag. Seal. Freeze.

When ready to cook, cook on low for 2-4 hours or until warmed through. Serve with rice.

Taco Soup (Crockpot)


1 lb of ground hamburger, cooked
1 onion finely chopped
taco seasoning packet
ranch packet
1 28oz can of stewed tomatoes
1 8oz can of tomato sauce
1 16oz can red beans, drained
1 16oz can hominy
2 cups frozen corn

Combine all of the ingredients in two gallon freezer bags. Seal and freeze.

When ready to cook, cook in slow cooker on low for 4-6 hours. Serve with cheese, sour cream and tortilla chips.

Cheesy Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole this one took the most prep
picky palate

3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 med onion, finely diced
3 stalks celery, finely diced
3 carrots, finely diced
2 Tablespoons minced garlic
2 cups shredded cooked chicken breast
2 cups steamed white rice
1 package prepared wild rice (mine was Uncle Ben's)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt

cheese sauce:
4 Tablespoons butter
1/4 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 cups chicken broth
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Optional to top with more cheese...anywhere from 1-1 1/2 cups.

Heat oil in medium skillet over med high heat. Saute onion, celery and carrots until softened. About 10 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for another minute. Stir in chicken, both rices, salt, pepper, and garlic salt. Turn off.

Prepare cheese sauce. Melt butter in a med sauce pan on high heat. Whisk in flour, salt and pepper. Then slowly pour in chicken broth while continuously whisking. Whisk until thick and nearly boiling. Then stir in cheese until melted.

Pour cheese sauce over the rice mixture. Then transfer everything to a 9x13 aluminum baking pan (you know the kind you can throw away when all done!). Let cool slightly. Add additional cheese topping if you want.

Allow to cool before you cover. Once cooled, cover twice with plastic wrap and then once with foil. Mark on the foil baking instructions and date.

When ready to eat, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 30 minutes or until cheese is melted on top and casserole is warmed through.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Flavored Ice Chips - making delivery worth it.

So we have checked in and the Oxytocin is doing its job. While the contractions are getting stronger and more frequent, some flavored ice chips make things a little better (they were a lot more exciting before strong contractions kicked in).

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