Saturday, March 27, 2010

Yum, yum...kale

Yes, you read that right. Kale. The dark, leafy green you don't really know what to do with. Not what usually comes to mind when you think of "Yum yum", is it?

I have seen tons of cooking/foodie blogs talk about baked kale chips lately. They sounded sooo good. (well anything with the word "chip" in it sounds good to me lately.) So I finally made them tonight and wow, were they AWESOME!

I used this recipe I saw at Smitten Kitchen. But really, there is not much of a "recipe".

All you do is wash and dry a bunch of kale, cut it into pieces (taking out the hard rib/stem), toss with olive oil, put on a baking sheet and sprinkle with salt. Bake at 300* for 20 minutes and voila! Crunchy goodness that's actually good for you!

I was *shocked* at how light and crispy these turned out. And they taste good, which I think was the biggest shocker! Even Chris, who isn't the world's most adventurous eater, was popping them in his mouth faster than I could.

Give them a whirl, I think you will be pleasantly surprised! And if not, pack them up and ship them to me. I'll take care of them for you!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Half with picture!

No, I don't mean what you think I mean.

What I do mean is that I am 20 weeks today! The halfway point of pregnancy! Not really sure where the last 20 weeks have gone, but am not sad to see them behind me. It will be puppies and rainbows from here on out, right?!

I am very happy to report that I am feeling great these days! Right around 17/18 weeks my nausea completely disappeared and so far (knock on wood) has not returned. My stomach is getting a little bigger and rounder each day it seems and I am starting to feel little pokes and prods from within. Very exciting!

As Olive has told me several times..."Mama has BIG tummy!". And apparently it's not because the baby is growing, but rather because Mama has "too many special treats".


Guess I need to stop eating Cheetos in front of her!

Monday, March 22, 2010

World Water Day

Today is World Water Day.

Sadly, millions of people do not have access to clean drinking water. Head over to World Water Day to see what you can do to help the world water crisis. 

Don't we all deserve a clean drink of water? 

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Reading Tea Leaves

Or the tag on the tea bag anyway.  This was what I read with my morning cup of Mother To Be tea

"Bliss is a constant state of mind, undisturbed by gain or loss." 

Amazing words to live by.  Here's to a blissful day!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Individual Chicken Pot Pies

I saw this recipe for Chicken Pot Pie on Weelicious a few weeks ago and was dying to try it. There is just something about chicken pot pie that makes my mouth water. Me thinks it's the flaky, buttery crust.  This recipe does not disappoint!

As always, my adaptations/changes are in blue.

Chicken Pot Pie
(adapted from

*I used a roll of Pillsbury pie crust. Saved a bit of cooking/baking and clean up time! 

4 Tbsp Butter, chilled and cubed
4 Tbsp Shortening or Lard, chilled and cubed
1 1/4 Cup All Purpose Flour
1/2 Tsp Salt
2-3 Tbsp Ice Water
1. Place the first 4 ingredients in a food processor and pulse until it resembles coarse cornmeal.
2. Sprinkle 1 tbsp of the water in the food processor and pulse a few times until the dough starts to come together.
3. Place the dough of a piece of parchment or plastic wrap and gather the dough into a ball and flatten into a disk.
4. Refrigerate the pie crust dough for 30 minutes or until chilled.

Pie Filling:
2 Cups or 1 14 oz Can Chicken Broth (I use low sodium)
2 Chicken Breasts, boneless, skinless (about 1 Lb)
4 Tbsp Butter, divided
1 Clove Garlic, minced
1 Small Onion, minced
2 Stalks of Celery, diced
2 Carrots, peeled and diced (I used frozen carrots)
1 Tsp Fresh or 1/2 Tsp Dried Thyme
3 Tbsp Butter
3 Tbsp Flour
1 Cup Milk
1 Cup Peas (I use frozen)
Pepper to taste

1. In a saucepan, bring chicken stock and chicken breasts to a boil, reduce to a simmer, partially covered for 12 minutes. Remove the chicken breasts to a plate, reserving the chicken broth, and when cool, cut the chicken into bite size chunks.
2. Heat 1 tbsp of the butter in a saucepan over medium heat and cook the garlic and onions for 4 minutes or until translucent.
3. Add the celery, carrots and thyme and cook for an additional 3 minutes.
4. Melt the remaining butter into the vegetables and sprinkle the flour over and stir to make a roux. Cook for 1-2 minutes stirring to coat the vegetables.
5. Add the milk, reserved chicken broth, chopped chicken and peas and simmer over low to medium for 10 minutes or until thick and creamy. Season to taste with Salt and Pepper.
6. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
7. Place 1/4 of the mixture in 4 10 oz ramekins or 1 large ramekin. (I used 5 8oz ramekins)
8. Dust a flat surface with flour and roll out the dough 1/4 inch thick (about the size of a pie plate).
9. Place the ramekins on the dough upside-down and cut 1/2 inch wider around to make the top crust of the pot pie.
10. Place the cut-out dough on top of the ramekin and gently pinch the sides, pressing it to make it stick.
11. Using the tip of a knife, make 3 slits on top of the dough (to allow ventilation).
12. Place ramekins on a cookie sheet and bake for 30 minutes at 400 degrees.
13. Cool and serve.


(Image from

Sweet smile

All together now....Awwwww! 

Baby #2, or Cappy, as my SIL Emily has dubbed him/her, is doing great! Measuring right on track for my mid August due date. 

We may be biased, but we think he/she is pretty cute! :) 

Monday, March 8, 2010

International Women's Day

Did you know that today is International Women's Day? 

Yeah, me neither. But it is! 

"International Women's Day (8 March) is a global day celebrating the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future. In some places like China, Russia, Vietnam and Bulgaria, IWD is a national holiday. The first IWD was run in 1911." (IWD)

What will you do to celebrate? Head over to the IWD website to learn more. 

(Image courtesy of IWD)

Project Life

For my birthday, my BIL, SIL and nephew gave me Life. Project Life that is. A scrapbook/photo album project that helps you document the daily happenings of your life for 365 days. 

An interesting and useful way to use the (approximate) one bajillion pictures I take daily/weekly/monthly/yearly. I already take the pictures, I just need to add words to tell the story. That's easy enough, right?!

Well, let's just say that when I opened the box, I was a tad overwhelmed. There was a giant empty 3-ring album,  a stack of protector pages, a pack of scrap booking paper and a handful of smaller boxes containing cards of different shapes and variety. And a date stamper. 

I am not a scrap booker. 

Not at all. 

And my SIL knows this. Yet, she somehow knew that I would enjoy this project. I had just one teensy tiny little problem.

I didn't know how to start. I didn't know what to do with all of these beautiful supplies. Well, I knew how to work the date stamper, but wasn't quite sure where I was suppose to be stamping the date. Soooo, I put it off to the side. I figured once I was over my wonderful pregnancy sickness, I would tackle it head on. But then we went to San Diego. And then we went to Arizona. And now it's March. 

I haven't even started and I already failed. 

This past weekend, Kelsey was so kind as to take me by the hand and help me get my Life up and running. Pretty sure she explained everything at least twice and pretty sure I will still forget what was meant to go where. 

But see, that's the beauty of Project Life, there is no "right" or "wrong" way to do it. It's just meant to be a place for you to "do it". Whatever that means and however that looks to you. 

Now I need to just do it. 

So I went through my pictures, put the appropriate date on each and sent an order in. And I have been going over the (sparse) notes i have been trying to jot down to help me remember what we did, how i was feeling or where i was for the past 66 days. 

It's a start. 

Baby steps people, baby steps. 

And if I am feeling brave I may even share my Life with you as it progresses.

Maybe. We'll see.  If you're nice.

I can always be bribed with chocolate. or pickles. 

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

And the winner is...

And the winner of their very own copy of Hear No Evil is.....


Sarah of The Strength of Faith!

Congrats Sarah!

I will be sending you an email shortly asking for your mailing info. You have 48 hours to respond or I will draw a new winner.

Thanks to everyone who entered!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Product RAVE: Tide To Go Instant Stain Remover

Several months ago while waiting in the check out lane at Target, I threw a package of Tide To Go Instant Stain Remover into the cart. I figured it would be great to have in the diaper bag. And I had a coupon. 

Tide to Go original

I finally had a reason to use it while in Arizona last week. We had a busy day of going to a park (aka grass stains), coloring (aka crayon and marker everywhere) and going to a spaghetti dinner (aka spaghetti sauce, enough said). By the end of the day, Olive's pants, shorts and shirt had numerous little stains on them. As somehow or another, my shirt did too. Funny how that happens, huh?

I whipped out my little Tide to Go stick and went to town. I figured even if it didn't take the stains out completely, it would at least help. Threw the clothes in the dirty laundry bag and forgot about them until Sunday when we got home.

Lo and behold, they all came out of the wash stain FREE! I was very impressed. Needless to say, we will be keeping Tide to Go sticks on hand for all of our outings!
If you head over to Tide's website you can print out a coupon for $1 off a Tide to Go Instant Stain Remover stick. Looks like they have mini ones too! 

**Disclaimer: I am doing this review out of the goodness of my heart and belief in the product. I was in no way, shape or form compensated or affiliated with Tide. But would be open to that relationship if they would like to pursue it. :) 

image courtesy of

Monday, March 1, 2010

Giveaway Reminder!

Just a reminder that the Hear No Evil book giveaway ends tomorrow! Not too many people have entered, so the odds are in your favor!

And we're back.

Olive and I made our triumphant return home yesterday.

It's good to be home.

Traveling with a toddler is tiring. Traveling with a toddler while pregnant is exhausting. Traveling with a toddler while pregnant and dealing with transportation snafu's is exhausting and frustrating.

But well worth it.

Oli and I headed down to sunny Arizona last Monday to visit my Grandma for the week. The weather was gorgeous (even though all the Arizonians (Arizonites?) kept apologizing for the cool temps. It was sunny and in the upper 60s and low 70s the entire trip. We didn't complain. Even managed to brave the "cold" for daily naps in the sun and soaks in the pool.

Olive was a dream the whole trip. I couldn't have asked her to be more well behaved than she was. She was her usual happy, sunny self and charmed the polyester track suits right off all the residents of Fountain East Mobile Home Community. Being that the average age of the residents is probably around 78, it wasn't that hard. She enjoyed going for walks around the community and admiring everyone's "lawn" ornaments. And the citrus trees. We picked a lot of oranges, lemons and grapefruits to bring to Great Grandma. And she now has about 20 extra Grandma and Grandpa's in her corner.

We fully embraced the spirit of the senior community and partook in several events; spaghetti dinner, shuffleboard, bocce, naps in the sun, visiting friends and watching for the flag to be put out on the club house signaling the arrival of the mail.

All in all it was a great week. I am glad we went.

But it is so good to be home.