Friday, September 30, 2011

beef: it's what's for dinner

99% of the time I cook for my family during the week. I'm not tooting my horn, except I am, because seriously who ever would have thought those words could have come from my mouth? Not my parents I'll tell you that much. Just know that growing up my mom said "you'll want to know how to do this when you get older" on many occasions and every time I responded with a tourettes-worthy fit of eye rolling and the like. I'm sure the Cons appreciated it deeply, bless her soul. 


I cook out of necessity because guess what? It's cheaper to buy your groceries and make your own dinner, and because I am a crazy person who likes feeding my family good food. Weird. Also, some of my most treasured childhood memories revolve around the comfort food my Connie would make for us chiltlins, she is legendary in the kitchen I tell you, and though it may be a long shot, I hope one day my kids will feel the same way about my cooking. After all, with two boys I'll likely have two daughter-in-laws someday, and I would like to give those future daughter-in-laws a complex, because I take raising mama's boys very seriously. If that's not motivation, I don't know what is.  

Anyway, dinner. Tonight is beef and broccoli posted on Pioneer Woman and come my way via Nat (because I just really like her, you know). It was a major win by the way.  

this is my best "sexy in the kitchen and here is my chest in black and white" webcam photo, you're welcs

One of the best things about blogging for me has been all the recipe sharing that goes on, except you find something good but don't print it off and forget about it and then can't remember where you saw it and there went that idea. For a while there I even contributed to a recipe blog until we all got lazy and forgot about it. Then Pinterest (follow me? kallikverb) came along and make it ridikkulously easy to find, save, and sort aforementioned recipes. It's the greatest invention of ever. All of the other stuff on Pinterest can be a bit much, a lot much, but for organizing bookmarks and recipes it's the bees knees. Yes, I just said that. I also keep a 3 ring binder full of recipes I've printed off cased inside plastic sheet protectors and I flip through those for dinner ideas too on top of my family cookbooks, my America's Test Kitchen cookbook, Taste of Home, Ina Garten, church ones and a couple of others. It's also helpful if you write down notes on the recipes you have hard copies of for reference's sake. Sometimes you have good shortcuts you'll think you remember, but the truth is you won't unless it's right there in the margin! I have a boatload of recipes thanks to my friend Whitney, you may have once known her as Rookie Cookie, and soon to be great cookbook authoress. For serious though, she is taking Rookie Cookie down in 2 weeks because of her new project and you should start printing off all her stuff like crazy. Try the beef shortribs, they're amazeballs. 

Look at me all acting like I'm such a superior meal planner and stuff. Truth? I go in phases. Sometimes I'm on my game, other times...meh. All summer long we flew by the seat of our pants. However, colder weather calls for action to avoid me spiraling down a pit of despair with Wendy's takeout every night at rock bottom. I've been planning my meals on Sunday, putting them in my google calendar, complete with links if any, and then posting "what's for dinner" on the chalkboard in my kitchen. Not gonna lie, it really helps if I have a game plan. Guess what else, you can look back over your calendar to see what you ate in previous weeks and decide if you want to repeat. Did I blow your mind right there? I'm guessing yes. 

Anywho, this is probably nothing new to you overachievers who already have a handle on this whole "feeding your family" schtick. I'm thinking I'll probably post my weekly menus on here anyway, because this stuff gets repetitive and we kitchen slaves can use all the help we can get, right? Right.



*Also, happy General Conferencing to my fellow Morms. Do I have an entire weekend menu planned around breakfast foods for the occasion? Yes I do. May we find ourselves physically bloated and spiritually fed. Amen.  

Thursday, September 29, 2011

my new favorite

Maybe I just watched this 10 times in a row... 


thanks Carina

Sunday, September 25, 2011

let's do this again

Here's the thing,

I hate hair feathers. They sort of make me want to kill myself. Of course I'm being dramatic. It looks great on you no it doesn't!

I long for nothing more than pants that fit, a top with no muffin attached, and a face with no adult acne. Do I ask for too much? Apparently.  

I don't know a lot about politics, but I sure do love to make fun of Michelle Bachmann.

I cannot watch The Bachelor. I can't. Hork. 

My children, oh gravy, those boys. I just feel so damn SMUG about how good looking they are. I mean really, it's like "mirror mirror on the wall, who has the best looking children of all?" ME SUCKERS. I pray daily that this translates well throughout puberty and adulthood. You know, because life is easier when you're devastatingly handsome. It's just a fact. I mean I assume it is because we all know how that went for me.
I mean, yes, your kids are nice too though, high five!

I've been happy lately, all summer essentially. Not over the top, in your face, jazz hands and exploding glitter cannon type happy, but content and yes, this is very nice-type happy. Which is good because a lot of my friends and family are dealing with some real serious business and it helps if you're not down when your friends are down. You know, balancing out the universe and stuff. 

This picture brings me great joy:


huh, what? how'd this get on there
psssttt...
(my birthday is in November)
(I'm turning 30)

 and this one too

I want to come up with some sort of a pre-school curriculum and schedule for my Nublet, but when I think about actually doing it, I feel tired and then I think about something else, like cookies, and where can I get my hands on some tunic tops so I can wear leggings more often?

Did I tell you my sister is pregnant? Well, my sister is pregnant. A girl. February. Thanks for asking. I am notorious (only to myself) for pregnancy envy. What? I like being pregnant, I just like it, a lot, and last time she did this I just so happened to show up pregnant like 4 months later. Except this time I'm not jealous (maybe a little), just genuinely excited and even more excited that I get to sniff and snuggle this little lady baby and then hand her back to mama for the nursings and nighttime. My flat pancake boobs will remain dried up and saggly, and noticeably sans perpetually attached newborn. Bless. Does this mean I'm maturing? Or have my ovaries shriveled up and died? As La Yen was once known to ponder "if my eggs fall in the forest and no one gets them pregnant am I still a woman?" or something like that.


I like this picture as well. Did I already post this picture? OH NOES!


Thursday, September 22, 2011

mad libs

i am...

watching the season premier of grey's anatomy, a sinkhole? really? why am i still watching this show?

alone. paul went to a movie with his boyfriend (creepers attack!)

hungry

dying to see What's Your Number

still full from lunch with nat (go to there, immediately, the owner is getting a little creeped out over my constant fawning, and probably tired of the disaster triple leaves behind every time)

tired, hungry, have to pee (but what else is new?)

thinking about piecing a scrap quilt, fall project for a winter quilt, except I don't think I have enough scraps. donations?

excited for my new niece in february, thanks for getting knocked up again stoopid

fighting off the urge to set my garden on fire

so in love with my husband

bonkers over my boys

heartbroken for loss, wish I could be more, do more, life isn't fair

sleepy

nanight

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

probably more than you ever wanted to know about my menstrual cycle

Well, I'm doing it, 

reading the entire Harry Potter series over again, of course. The last time I did that was in college and it took me like 2 weeks because you know, once you start you can't stop, and also, it was a lot more exiting than the stupid crap I was supposed to be reading, "Theories in Therapeutic Recreation" and other such snooze fests. It took me 3 years to pick a major and by that point it was sort of a cover your eyes and throw a dart sort of thing and that's what I came out of it with. No wonder my grades took a beating the last year and a half of school. It could have been the lack of real interest in my studies, or the three jobs, or the social life that got in the way. Stupid boys. Stupid jobs. Stupid school. MOVING ON. 

I made my kids go down for early naps. Well Triple not so much, he sort of missed his morning nap all together, but we had a donut run to make this morning and a class at the gym to get to right after. Yes, those two things are certainly related. Except I managed only to eat a 3rd of my donut and shared the rest with the other two hungry badgers in my car. Good mothers only feed their children quality donuts, like the giant maple bars from Daylight Donuts in PG that can easily be split three ways. I've been back at the gym seriously, like 5-6 days a week seriously for over a month now and I can tell you that getting up at 5:30 am for pump class on Tuesdays and Thursdays never really gets easier and just sort of serves to make my days seem horrendously long. This is also the truth about running. Though I may have been running most of the summer off and on, the furthest I can get without needing a break is about a mile and a half to 2 miles. Sure, I run/walk/light yog off and on the whole way back but someone needs to clue me in on when that's supposed to get easier too because such a thing never really seems to happen for me. Sure, I've done a few 5k's and whatever, I survived. But you people who routinely run 4-5-6-10 miles? You're effing crazy and obviously your body is built differently than mine because that shizz ain't happening around these parts. Also, it used to be that a quick run a few days a week was enough of a catalyst for me to shed weight like a Jenny Craig client, except that doesn't seem to be working either. I blame the birth control, and my out of control hormonees. 

Speaking of, let's talk birth control for a minute. All the men are invited to leave the viewing platform because I'm going to use words like "flow" and "period" which might make you uncomfortable, because it makes me uncomfortable. Since Triple came along I've had a bit of a rough time with the different methods I've tried. Immediately after hatching out that juicy giblet, I hemorrhaged for a while, and then had the unfortunate curse of dealing with extended lochia, almost 12 weeks worth. 3 damn months of that crap. Then at 12 weeks I had the Mirena IUD put in with the promise that my periods would "practically disappear"! Except it caused another 3 months worth of spotting and bleeding and discomfort before my lady oven decided to calm the freak down and relax a little bit. So angry, such resentment. True enough, Aunt Flo did practically disappear but something was still off. I was, at this point, packing a good 10-15 lbs around despite my best efforts, I might have been a bit crazier and more prone to bouts of anxiety than usual, and my skin, holy crap my skin was a train wreck. After much fasting and deep, deep prayer, I decided to have that stupid IUD removed and go back on my friend, the birth control pill. My doctor put me on Loestrin, one I hadn't tried before. Turns out that pill is pretty much the same thing as Mirena (super low doses of hormone) and I even GAINED 5 lbs on it. Stupid, stupid Loestrin. So here we are, as of Sunday I'm back on my old friend, Ortho-Tri-Cyclen. She's always done me right, should have gone back to her in the first place. Now we wait. Wait to see if my sensitive Sally hormones will regulate out at last, wait to see if this weight will finally come off, and wait to see if my skin will stop acting like it's a teenager again. 

So there's my story. TMI, I'm so good at this, I know. Should you feel so inclined, tell me what's worked best for you in this department.

How'd we get from Harry Potter to birth control? Thanks for coming on this journey with me friends.

(not you Connie, we already know what DIDN'T work *cough cough 4 babies in 5 years nursing is obviously not reliable contraception, snip snip!)

Friday, September 16, 2011

the good ones

A while ago I read a quote from the guys behind Utah Valley's finest, Communal and P712, about how their philosophy is quite simple: if you make good food with fresh, quality ingredients, good things will happen. If you've eaten there, I'm sure you will have no argument. That is some tasty grub, some of the best I've ever had restaurauntally speaking, and despite the challenges of sourcing local food, obscure location, and doing things differently in a world that thrives on repetitiveness, they are reaping the rewards of success. They love their community and their community loves them right back.  

Lately I've been thinking about how that same philosophy applies to life in general. If you surround yourself with good people, good things are bound to come of it. Today I stopped by to visit one of my very best friends who is about to have her 4th baby while at the same time preparing to say goodbye to her own dad. Lung cancer, the aggressive and deadly kind. I cried as I stood in her kitchen. It's all so unfair isn't it? But she smiled at me and said "he's ready, it will be okay", and I knew it to be the truth. She and I have been together through college, jobs, moves, dating, marriage, re-marriage, unemployment, re-employment, births, and deaths already, and we'll be friends through whatever life throws at us in the future. She is a rock, and her example and influence on my life is impossible to quantify in any form.  

The older I get (*cough, turning 30 in November), the more I realize how my own life is perfect evidence of this train of thought. I have this family, this family that I love. This family that is equal parts dysfunctional and weird, along with perfect in so many different ways. They are, as family should be, impossible to live without. And then I have these friends. Oh, I love my friends. Friends fall into so many different categories. You have the kind where you can go for months without talking, and then pick up right where you left off. And then you have the kind where if you don't talk during the day, every day, you get in bed at night and immediately start text messaging each other inappropriate subject matter as a way of catching up. These are the people you share clothes with, the people you call to watch your children in a pinch, who show up at the hospital to hold your newborn babe, who buy your lunch when you're running late, who know what your favorite drink is, who fly miles and miles just to visit, who throw jobs your way and give you confidence to do what you've always wanted, who put together family barbecues and let the children run amuck, who bring sticker mustaches to your 3 year old's birthday party, who go to movies with you at 10 pm. These are the people who love you quite possibly as much as you love them. These are the people that matter.  

If you surround yourself with good people, good things will happen. 

I promise. 

Daybreak and Extreme Home Makeover

Whenever I travel and people ask where I'm from and I say "Utah", I get a little embarrassed. As if living in Utah isn't very cool and basically I just outed myself as a bored housewife who belongs to a religious cult, loves shopping and enjoys having lots of babies. I do like those things, and I like living in Utah the majority of the time in spite of people who wear pants with bedazzled pockets and white stitching (men included) along with their tanks and t-shirts underneath. Will the modesty cap sleeve movement just die around here already? Utah is full of quirks. The fact that everyone knows what you mean when you say "the kids have mutual tonight", or "stake conference is on Sunday", and literally every local business in my area is closed on the Sabbath is really just the cherry on top. We are generally a bunch of weirdos.

But I digress.

People like to think that nothing exciting ever happens around here (aside from Jimmer-mania) since the Olympics left town 10 years ago, but those people are wrong. Did you know that the team from ABC's Extreme Home Makeover came and built a house for a deserving local family in Daybreak? It's true! The episode airs October 2nd, and I know I'll be watching.


You know I dig Daybreak. What I dig most is that the homes in Daybreak aren't your typical Utah homesSalt Lake homes, and other Utah construction trends leave me with a bad taste in my mouth. I mean I get it, we love our stucco and timber, french countryside, faux finish? EVEN BETTER! I mean, my 3 bedroom brick palace give me a lot of room to judge so take this for what it's worth. In a perfect world, I prefer something a bit different, something you might find anywhere but Utah. Daybreak does that and does it well. Maybe someday in my land of dreams and fantasies I might own a house there, until then I'll just write about it, and dream.

**Watch Extreme Home Makeover on October 2nd at 7 pm to see what the fabulous crew put together for the very deserving Gomez family right here in Utah! I love this place!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Habits

I sleep on the left side of the bed. Any bed. Left side.

My closet is color coordinated and organized short sleeve vs long, stripes and patterns (of which there are none, a plethora of white t-shirts, yes).

Everyday I wear basically the same thing. V-neck shirt, jeans or a skirt.

I always brush my teeth and wash my face before bed. I don't always floss.

My #1 pet peeve in life is waking up to a dirty kitchen.

On airplanes I always order ginger ale.

Movies require cherry coke and frozen jr mints.

If you call me I will probably send you to voicemail, and then delete the voicemail. I only have a phone to check my email, dink around on the internets, and text message. The only people I really talk to are Connie and Paul, specific friends, occasionally my dad, and an in-law or two. Don't take it personally.

I do my make-up the same every day. If I put on make-up at all that is. Bare Minerals, a swipe of neutral eye color if I'm feeling extra special, black/brown eyeliner, Covergirl mascara in the fat orange tube. Done.

Things I routinely buy at Costco:
1. frozen chicken breasts
2. Pirates Booty
3. wipes (diapers from Amazon)
4. milk
5. bananas
6. watermelon
7. eggs (Oakdell Omega 3)
8. Cheerios
9. spinach
10. food court pizza for lunch
11. fruit leather

I will pay $1 extra just to get my drink from Sonic. Styrofoam cups and pebble ice? A marriage of happiness. Lately? Coke Zero with vanilla. Thanks Whit.

I neurotically check labels for high fructose corn syrup, and yet feel no shame in letting my child have a Sprite every time I go to Sonic, which is at least once or twice a week.

I do not like to be talked to or looked at when I am going to the bathroom. Having only 1 bathroom means this almost never happens; subsequently, this bothers me.

I routinely story-top (when one person shares a story and the other immediately tops them with their own, much worse story). It's a social coping mechanism. A bad one.

When I'm nervous I pick at the dead skin on my lips.

I cannot drive without sunglasses.

Monday, September 12, 2011

NaNight Stupid


By 11:30 this morning I was ready to sell some children, cheap. 

What it is about 3 year olds that immediately makes you feel like banging your head against the wall? There are only so many times I can ask nicely, correct even more nicely, and gently reprove with my best motherly methods before I run out of ideas and do things like throw him on his bed and slam the door on my way out. THIS IS A HAPPY HOME, LOVE IS FREAKING SPOKEN HERE PEOPLE. 

It's going to be a long winter, isn't it? 

Le poop. 

My bosom friend KK had a wee bebe last week (Cali, my namesake by default but I'll TAKE IT), 3 days later San Diego had a nice blackout which I'm sure was fun for them. Nursing a newborn by candlelight is so much more romantic and pioneerish, we should all do it! Then of course, my widdle boy had a birthday except he is NOT little and we almost got rained out. En serio, it poured about an hour before the party was to start and trust me, taking it inside our little red brick castle of dreams was not an option. But the heavens did part and the epic Utah County traffic did subside and we had ourselves a birthday party on Friday night. 

Do I still get to claim "I just had a baby" now that he's one? Does that work as a valid excuse? 

Why am I still awake, it's 12 freaking 29 in the morning? 

Clearly I should not have access to the internets past 10. 


Friday, September 9, 2011

Triple F Turns 1

1 year ago at 8:41 am, I was sitting in a hospital bed after just having had my water broken wondering what kind of crazy I had just signed up for.

Three hard and fast hours of labor later, I had my answer:



I'm so glad I did all of that, so glad he's mine, so happy he's ours. And now he's 1 whole year old, on the verge of walking, a moving path of destruction wherever he goes. Hurricane Fatty.



Happy Birthday my big ONE YEAR OLD! Mama loves you. 


Thursday, September 8, 2011

it's not winter just yet

I don't post for 10 days and suddenly Blogger has a whole new interface? I like, is sleek. Let's see how it publishes.

Hi friends, I've missed you.

It's September now, did you know? Of course you did, we're 8 days in. Is it officially Fall? I have no idea. I'm wearing shorts today but we turned off the AC 3 days ago. Other then a few tense moments after mopping the floor and my subsequent sweaty brow, I haven't had the urge to turn it back on either. Before I had kids, Fall was my season. We were best friends, all boots and sweaters, crunchy leaves, soup and pumpkin baked goods. And then I had kids and realized what it's like to spend 6 months inside a house with nary a thing to do other than watch the same cartoons over, and over, and over again. There are only so many times you can feign a need to go to Target just to get out of the house before your bank account starts telling the truth.

*Sigh

I keep telling myself that this year will be better. This fall I don't have a newborn, I'm not a slave to the nursing demons, I'm no longer crying from lack of sleep and begging my mom to come rescue me at least once a week. By all means it SHOULD be better.

Let's just say I'm optimistic. At any rate I am appreciating the cooler weather, yet already missing schweaty afternoons at the pool. 

Today I'm getting my hairs did, haven't had them colored since February. Not that I particularly need to, but you know, it's fun and all to blow a chunk of change on stuff like that from time to time. Mama needs a lits bits of pampering.

Tomorrow we have a birthday. One whole year of this guy:



He's still the purveyor of extraordinary rolls, ridiculous lashes, and gray/green eyes that change on occasion much to my personal delight. He likes to eat rocks and dirt, sand if it's available, food in any shape and form. He loves his brother, adores his daddy, and likes to keep mom in line of sight.

I live in 2 kid nirvana, it's a happy place, where I hope to stay for a while.