Thursday, November 12, 2009
(Here's where a picture would go, if I had managed to take a picture before they were all eaten. *ahem*)
Pecan Spice Pancakes
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp sugar (I used Splenda)
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
dash of nutmeg
dash of cloves
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 beaten egg
1 cup half-and-half (or milk)
2 Tbsp cooking oil
real maple syrup
1. In a medium mixing bowl stir together the dry ingredients. Make a well in the center of the dry mixture; set aside.
2. In another medium mixing bowl combine the egg, milk, and cooking oil. Add egg mixture all at once to the dry mixture. Stir just till moistened (batter should be lumpy).3. Cook pancakes in a hot, buttered skillet for approx. 2 min on each side. Serve with real maple syrup.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
I first read about her on a blog, and I was intrigued. She sounded like a good idea, but was she worth it? Would David like her? Wouldn't she be just like all the other teething toys we've bought - played with for a few minutes and then tossed aside? It seemed like he would rather chew on his fists than any kind of teether. I went out on a limb and decided to give her a try.
She arrived on Tuesday, and I immediately took her out of the box, wiped her off, and handed her to David.
His eyes got huge, and if he could talk, he would have asked, "Where have you been all my life?!?" He grasped her by the neck, inspected her thoroughly, and immediately began gnawing on her feet.
It was love at first sight.
Her name is Sophie the Giraffe. She's made of natural rubber, painted with food paint, and she squeaks pleasantly when her body is squeezed. She's easy for little hands to grasp, and there are many chewable parts - David prefers her feet, but he'll also chew on an ear for variety.
I am so happy that Sophie has joined our family!
For more recommendations, visit Things I Love Thursday at The Diaper Diaries!
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
I seem to buy a lot of the same things when I go to the grocery store. I'm sure we all have our own lists of what we consider to be staples for the fridge, freezer, and pantry. These are the things that are almost always on my list:
1. Milk - with a 3 year old in the house, we go through a lot of milk! In a few short months, when David starts drinking whole milk, we'll be going through even more. Maybe we should buy a cow to keep in the backyard...
2. Flavored coffee creamer - a totally non-essential purchase, but one that makes me smile every morning. I like coffee, and I like it sweet & creamy & flavorful. I'm looking into making my own to see if it will save money and still give me the joy of yumminess.
3. Pioneer Baking Mix - I have always used Bisquick, but I tried Pioneer Brand Baking Mix about a month ago, and it's wonderful! The first time I used it, I made biscuits, and they were so, SO good. They were fluffy and tender and yummy, and I was instantly converted. I don't think I'll ever buy Bisquick again!
4. Bananas - my daughter loves bananas, and is accustomed to eating one sliced banana every morning. It's easy, yummy, and good for her, so we try to keep bananas on hand.
5. Rotisserie Chicken - I get a rotisserie chicken every week or so. I love the flavor, and I love the ease of having something already cooked. I've looked at prices, and at our Kroger, it's really not that much more expensive than a whole uncooked chicken. When I buy the rotisserie chicken at Sam's Club, I get even more bang for the buck, because their chickens are larger. We typically have two meals straight from the chicken, and then I pick the rest & toss it in the freezer for casseroles and soups.
6. Sharp Cheddar Cheese - we eat a lot of cheese, because, well, it's yummy. We use it in casseroles, salads, as a topping, in eggs, pretty much anywhere you can think of to use cheese. I get a 2 lb block of sharp cheddar at Sam's Club and shred it in the food processor, and it lasts us quite a while. It's much cheaper to do that than to buy shredded cheese, especially at the rate we go through it.
7. Fat-Free Sour Cream - one of our favorite recipes is for Beef Stroganoff, uses 2 cups of sour cream. I can barely tell a difference with the fat-free version; we like it just as much as when it is made with regular sour cream. Since we have stroganoff so often, you can almost always find sour cream on our grocery list!
8. Peanut Butter - I have a 3 year old who is not allergic to peanuts, so this should be self-explanatory. The child LOVES peanut butter. Loves it. I think she would happily live on peanut butter sandwiches, milk, and applesauce.
9. Pasta - we eat a lot of pasta. I try to use whole-wheat varieties and have been very happy with Barilla Plus pastas, which add fiber & protein to our diet.
10. Frozen Mixed Vegetables - we don't often eat frozen mixed vegetable on their own, but we use them in recipes all the time. They're great for soups, stews, pot pies, casseroles, and even macaroni and cheese. Since we use them so often, Wendy will eat them, and I feel great about her getting a variety of vegetables all at once. (And we never, EVER, use canned mixed vegetables, because... *gag*)
11. Formula - okay, I was about to finish off this list, and was forgetting something obvious. Since I wasn't able to breastfeed, formula is always, always, on our list. We go through a lot of formula.
What kinds of things are always on YOUR grocery list?
For more Top Ten Tuesday lists, visit OhAmanda!
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Just yesterday, I set up the Pack n' Play in the living room. It's been awhile since we used it - close to two years - but David's new rolling ability makes it necessary. When I got it all set up, I was reminded of how much I like this particular Pack n' Play:
This is Graco's Pack n' Play play yard in Bugs Quilt. The great thing about it is the size. It is a square shape, and the sides are the same length as the long size of a typical Pack n' Play. The bigger size & roomier shape make it much easier for baby to play comfortably. The bright bugs printed on the mesh sides keep David entertained, without obstructing airflow or visibility.
It works great as a travel bed, too, as long as you take the larger size into consideration. It doesn't have a bassinet top, but those aren't really necessary anyway. (In my opinion - if your baby fits into that bassinet top, he or she can just as easily fit into a laundry basket, which is much more portable.)
I've been happy with this Pack n' Play since we first bought it for Wendy, and I highly recommend it to anyone who is in the market for a play yard or travel crib!
For more Things I Love Thursday posts, visit The Diaper Diaries!
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
My daughter, at 3 years old, is a very busy girl. She is on the move from the time she opens her eyes in the morning to the time she reluctantly closes them at nap time or night time. She is also great at keeping herself entertained...however, her methods for self-amusement generally involve messes, bruises, or a crying little brother.
When Wendy is given a little more guidance in her play, we all benefit. Her attitude is better, her behavior is better, and we get to share some special and funny moments. She really likes to make things, so I am in the process of stocking up on some craft supplies for her.
Here are my Top Ten craft supplies to keep on hand for a 3 year old:
1. Crayons and Washable Markers - these are an obvious necessity for an easy craft time. Wendy loves crayons, and she really loves markers - see?
That's why WASHABLE markers are essential. I've been really happy with the easy clean-up of Crayola's washable products.
2. Construction Paper - I just bought a giant stack of construction paper at Sam's Club yesterday, and I can't wait to use it! I think today we'll be making these turkeys and talking about Thanksgiving. (And if you don't subscribe to Impress Your Kids, you really should. That site is jam-packed with wonderful ideas!)
3. Stickers - Wendy is fascinated with stickers, and loves to put them on her potty chart & use them to embellish her original artwork. She can go through them pretty quickly, so we use the cheapest ones we can find, and she likes them just as well as the expensive ones.
4. Felt and Craft Foam - I really need to get a few different colors to keep on hand for projects. It's cheap and extremely versatile.
5. Googly Eyes - who doesn't love googly eyes? You can use them to turn any project into something fun.
6. Pipe Cleaners - bendy, colorful, and fun, and no mess involved! Pipe cleaners are great for shaping into animals, letters, numbers, or "jewelry."
7. Glue Sticks and Safety Scissors - glue and scissors are another obvious choice. Wendy knows how to use scissors, but hasn't quite developed the coordination and strength to make it work. We're going to practice as we do our crafts, because it is an important preschool skill.
8. Glitter Glue - kids LOVE sparkles! Glitter glue is fantastic, because it lets you have the fun of glitter without it getting absolutely everywhere.
9. Popsicle Sticks - great for making puppets, Christmas ornaments, buildings, bookmarks, and so many other things! They are cheap, and can be painted, colored, and glued. You can get big bags at most craft stores, or wash the ones your family uses!
10. Yarn, Feathers, Leaves, Acorns, Buttons, Sequins, Pinecones, etc. - being able to make her projects "fancy" makes Wendy happy! And I know she's not the only Fancy Nancy out there...
What have I forgotten? What craft supplies do your kids love to use?
For more Top Ten Tuesday lists, visit OhAmanda.com!