Monday, June 30, 2008

English Muffin Pizzas

This has quickly become a staple in our house. I picked up the general recipe from a book of kid's recipes. This one has been altered to fit our needs. For example: I don't make my own pizza sauce. Ragu does it for me. It's pretty tasty too! Paige loves to help with this one and it's really quick & easy on the weekends. I make ours in the toaster oven since it's also a convection oven & a microwave. (Definitely one of my best wedding gifts!!)

English muffins
Ragu Pizza Sauce
Mozzarella Cheese
Whatever pizza topping your kids love

Cut the English muffins in half and lightly toast
Put a spoonful of pizza sauce on (more or less to taste)
Generously spread the cheese
Add toppings

Bake at 350 for 13-15 minutes, or until cheese is all melty and gooey.

I consider this one to be somewhat healthy for Paige. I mean, English muffins are decent enough. I use a skim milk based cheese & fresh mushrooms. The olives are definitely from a can.

Paige helps tear the ham up into pieces. She also helps to put the toppings on her pizza. I think more olives go in her mouth than on the pizza. She will sit and watch the microwave waiting for her pizza to come out. I think the fact that she gets to make it is part of why she loves it so much.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Paige help

Paige inherited a stool. It's a little wooden stool that my dad made. It makes her just tall enough to really help out in the kitchen. We have now got a little helper in the kitchen. And, oh, does she like to help. If she discovers you've sneaked into the kitchen without her she comes running in screaming, "Paige Help! Paige Help!" She then drags the stool over to where you are. Lovely sounds of wood scraping tile fills the air.

Once your ears have recovered, you realize you have a 2 year old attached to you at the kitchen counter. And it is always her turn. She likes to help stir, whisk, and eat olives. She will help put stuff in a bowl. Especially olives. She puts things in the sink for you and then insists on washing her hands. If you're holding a knife she really likes to get up beside you. Knives seem to be a Paige magnet. The larger the knife the more quickly she comes running.

Paige has recently discovered that her stool lets her do other things too. Like reach the shelf with the cookies. Or get her own ice water out of the fridge door. She can't open the cookies by herself so she still brings them to us. And she hasn't discovered how to unlock the ice dispenser. When she realizes that we're in trouble.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

My day

I intended this blog to be more about our family and stuff we do. Lately, it's all about me. Like today for example. Yesterday after lunch (which I didn't even really get to eat) I started feeling bad. I came home and laid down before going to get Paige. It felt like someone had a hammer and they were beating me just below my bra strap. Great, huh? I decided if it continued today I would call my doc.

This morning I called at 8:02. I tried to call at 8 but the phones were still forwarded. The very nice receptionist told me my doc has an available appointment in mid July. She then asked if that was OK. Ummm, no. I'm sick and in pain today, not in 3 weeks. Yes, I really said that. She was speechless for a few seconds there. After 17 minutes on the phone I had an appointment for the nurse to call me back.

Around 9:15 my left arm got all numb and tingly. I called Ronnie, who was about 2 miles away. He picked me up and took me to the ER by our house. I was there about 6 hours, mostly back in the room waiting on lab results. The EKG came back normal. The blood work came back normal. The X-Rays showed something that could be something, or maybe nothing. I got a CT scan.

The results of my day? 1 ovarian cyst (left ovary), 4 count them 4 kidney stones (2 in each kidney), and SEVERE acid reflux. I was told to avoid caffeine (I would rather cut my arm off than give up my 1 Coke each day), drink plenty of water (I already do), and to avoid spicy food. Avoid spicy food? Hello, my husband is a cajun chef! If I avoid spicy food I'll never eat! If he tries to cook bland food I'm not sure if it will be edible. Really. I don't think the man has ever cooked bland food. Besides, I know Paige won't eat bland. She turns her nose up at it.

Looks like I'll be living on that uber strength Prevacid he gave me.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

While Daddy is away...

Mommy will play. And do housework. And surf the internet. And read. What an exciting life we lead, huh? Ronnie went out of town on a business trip yesterday. He'll be back late tomorrow night. Not a long trip at all. But, he's also been working lots the past week. Paige. Well, she's been possessed by the Flying Spaghetti Monster of bad 2 year olds. You know, it wouldn't be so bad if he would clean up his own marinara stains. But that's an entirely different post.

Today I picked her up from school to have her cry and pitch a tantrum. She wasn't done playing yet. Then she started screaming for her Daddy. I finally got her buckled into the van. Before I closed the door I told her I wasn't listening to that all the way home. I handed her the juice I had brought special and she relaxed. After we got home she tried to hit me and to bite me. She immediately said sorry and gave me a hug and kiss.

This is how she's been off and on while Ronnie works. All I know for sure is that I would like my sweet baby girl back. Sometime soon too. I don't like this version of her as much. So, if you see the FSM anytime soon, ask him what his demands are. I'll pay pretty much any ransom he asks. All I ask in return is that he gives me back my laid back, easy going, giggly girl.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Presenting...The Meatloaf Burger

2 lb ground meat
1T mustard
2T A-1
1/3 c fine diced onion
1/3 c shredded cheddar cheese
1/3c diced ham or diced cooked bacon
2T Mojo (can be deleted if you don't have any)
1/2T Montreal Steak Seasoning
2 eggs
salt & pepper to taste
Progresso Italian Breadcrumbs

Add everything in a large bowl EXCEPT the breadcrumbs. Mix well.
Add small amount of breadcrumbs.
Let sit 10 minutes.
Check for firmness. You are going for a meatloaf type consistency.
Slap the mixture (nope, not kidding here). It should be rather still when you do.
If it jiggles like my thighs, add more breadcrumbs. Let sit 5 minutes. Slap again.

Once you have the consistency about that of meatloaf, form into patties and grill.

Ingredients can be added or changed depending on what you have handy or to fit your taste. I think at one point these included green peppers, but I don't eat them. They disappeared.

When making these Ronnie usually does 2 sets of burgers 1 set of meatloaf, 1 set of regular. We usually have regular ones left over and not enough meatloaf.

Please enjoy! Once you've tried them let me know what you think. My office still begs for these at least once a month and it's been a year since he made them. :)

Friday, June 20, 2008

I came out of the closet

The blogging closet that is. I didn't tell Ronnie about my blog until tonight. I don't know why. It's just been something I've been doing while he was occupied doing other things. I never set out to hide it from him, I just never brought it up. You may wonder why I picked now to come out of the closet. Well, it's Caroline's fault.

See, it started about a month ago. She asked for help with good ribs. I asked Ronnie if I could reveal his secret. He said yes. I gave her the secret recipe and some of his special seasoning: Elvis Mojo. She tried it. And loved it. In fact, she blogged about it. Check out Cheaper by the Half Dozen on the side over there. Go ahead, right click, open in new window. I'll wait.

Back? Good. Well, you'll see she mentioned putting it in a burger. I opened my mouth. See, he makes this amazing burger. I call it the Meatloaf Burger; he calls them Elvis burgers. They rock. I once again offered a recipe. Problem is I had to ask for it. He asked if I would be posting it on our Mommy board. I told him no. I then came clean on the blog.

Ronnie has read my blog, and he liked it. In fact, he said he might like to post some too. You may start seeing things from a hubby's point of view. First up: Meatloaf Burger Recipe. Maybe I can talk him into doing a recipe or kitchen tip once a week. He is pretty handy in the kitchen.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Crappy Computers

I missed half a day of work yesterday because of a doctor's appointment. So, I went in half an hour early today to make up some of the time. I get in at 7:30 to be told the computers are down. Great. Tech says it will be 15 to 20 minutes. No problem. We sit around, drink our morning coffee and kill about 30 minutes. Tech finally calls back. The problem is FIRM WIDE. That means not only our office in Mobile, but all 4 offices in Mississippi, both offices in Tennessee, and the office in Arizona. Great. It's an issue with AT&T. It will be at least 10 before it's fixed. They send us home.

I decide to go to the grocery store now for supper instead of after I pick Paige up this evening. I had just pulled into Bruno's when my phone rings. It's the office manager saying now it will be at least 11. And, they've moved the baby shower/ lunch to tomorrow to help compensate. I get my stuff for dinner and head home. I've spent a couple of hours playing video games. I should have been doing something around the house, but I just couldn't help myself. It was a rare treat to have a few hours alone during the day.

The thing is, I have to call at 11 to see if the computers are even back up! Jeannie, our office manager, hasn't called back so I know they aren't up. She said she would call or send a text if they came up earlier. Looks like this day is shot, work-wise. Since I've lost at least 3 hours of pay due to AT&T's issue, can I deduct that from my AT&T bill? I didn't think so, but I'm tempted!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Summer Movies

I still haven't sorted my vacation pictures yet. But, I have seen 2 summer movies already. Several weeks ago we went to see Iron Man. Ronnie loved the comic as a kid and teenager. I never read the comic, but thought Iron Man was cool. We try to see most Marvel movies that come out. This one was different. In the past Marvel has had to use a Hollywood studio to produce the movies. But, with the huge success of Spiderman, Marvel has been able to produce their own movies. This means they can stay more true to the comic and not have to worry about pleasing the studio execs who don't even know what a comic book is. Iron Man was great. It stayed true to the comic while giving us non-comic readers a great time. The action was wonderful, it had a plot, the acting was even good! All in all a definite summer movie hit.

Last night we saw Indiana Jones & The Kingdom on the Crystal Skull, or Indy 4. Do you realize it's been 19 years since the last Indy movie? Really. 19 years. Those 19 years gave George Lucas time to rewrite the script 7 times. It gave him time to change the title from & The Green Men from Mars. It gave him time to build up our expectations. I admit, this was my top movie to see before the summer started. It has Harrison Ford, Shia Lebouf, and the actual real actors coming back for their roles. I was ready for this one. Why did I go see it? I'm not saying it was bad. It's not. Not really. It was good for what it was. But it wasn't 19 years good. I expected better. Anyone remember The Mummy with Brendan Frasier? Consider that to be Indy 4. Perfect plot and action for it. I remember watching it thinking "this is what the next Indy should be." Now that you have that in your mind, go see Crystal Skull. You'll enjoy it more. Forget those 19 years.

There are other movies coming out. I would like to see The Incredible Hulk. I loved watching it as a child. I refused to see the one that came out several years ago. I would like to see Hancock. What can I say? I've had a crush on Will Smith since the video for Parents Just Don't Understand debuted on MTV. I want to see The Happening. I'm actually hearing good things about this one. I won't go see Zohan unless I'm tied to a chair at gunpoint with toothpicks holding open my eyes. Same for Baby Mama. Oh, and that new one from Austin Powers. It looks AWFUL. Not sure about the new X-Files. I've been over that for years now. But, the producer says this is the movie he wanted to make before the show ended. We'll see. We usually catch a matinee and if nothing else is good for a Paige break.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

We're Back!

Wow. What a vacation. It was a short, quick one. But man was it fun! The area up there is beautiful. The people were really nice even if they were a bit different from what we're used to. I actually survived 4 days away from Paige. We should have the pics off the camera soon so I can post those. There wasn't a whole lot to do up there, which I enjoyed. Ronnie hiked quite a bit. I read 2 books. It took me a day or so to get used to the air difference. It's so much easier to breath at sea level. Well, at least it is for me. Oh, and driving! Neither one of us is used to that many twists and turns. It felt like we were on a ride at Disney World!

We got back yesterday, unloaded the car, and went straight to daycare. Paige came running up to us screaming for Mommy and Daddy. She kept going from one to the other. All the way home we heard My Mommy. My Daddy. Then, we got home. After that, it was all My Aunt Wii. She didn't want anything to do with us. It seems she got a bit clingy and attached to Wendy while we were gone. Marc and Wendy went to the movies last night, leaving us with Paige. Paige cried for her a bit, but we finally got her calmed down. We introduced Paige to The Simpsons.

Friday, June 13, 2008

We're Going on Vacation!!

And it's a Mommy Daddy ONLY vacation! We're celebrating our 4th anniversary and my college graduation. My poor husband really did get neglected while I was in school. It's time to make up for it. We've made reservations here for the weekend.

We have a cabin today through Monday. And a 70% chance of storms tomorrow. It always rains on our vacations.

Paige has a reservation with Hotel Aunt Wendy. OK, so she's staying in her own bed since we all live together. The main thing is that Wii Wii will be taking care of Paige for the weekend while we go away. This will be the first time we have both left her together. She's gone on trips with one or the other, but we've never left her and gone off together.

I'm not taking the computer. This is a somewhat technology free weekend. There's no TV in the cabin. We're taking our cell phones of course, as well as a camera and a Nintendo DS. Other than that, nothing. This should be an interesting weekend. I'll be sure to post when we get back.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

To Clean or To Goof Off?

Paige went down for her nap a bit late. After being up at the butt crack of dawn, that means she was super tired. I probably have 30 minutes left of nap. Ronnie is still at work. I should be cleaning. For some reason, I just can't bring myself to do it. All I really want to do is crawl into bed and lay down. I'm just so tired! We went grocery shopping this morning, then played in the pool. Paige loves her pool! Now, I think it's time for Mommy to nap too. Maybe when Daddy gets home he'll motivate me to do something.

Friday, June 6, 2008

MMmmmm Margaritas!

I did something tonight I don't normally do. I went out for margaritas. It started as dinner and maybe a drink or 2 with my friend Nikki. We decided to meet at the Mexican place down the street from my house, El Toro. Great food, bad service, strong drinks. We decided to meet at 6:30. I got there first and looked over the menu. Hmmmm, 1 margarita is $3.50, a pitcher is $10. I ordered the pitcher.

We had drank, ate chips, drank, ate dinner, drank, and drank some more. We finally finished the pitcher between the 2 of us. Did I mention the drinks are strong? A VERY unnatural shade of green, but they're strong. We sat and talked about EVERYTHING. I'm talking one of those girlfriend talks. Sex. Drugs. People in the next booth. Kids. Problems. Politics. Religion. Sex. We had a blast. This was one of those rare nights. Her 3 older kids (all under age 5) were staying the night with family members & her youngest was home with Daddy. (Two are her niece & nephew she's raising.) Paige was home with Daddy. We actually had a night of total adult conversation. And complete girl talk.

Ronnie and Marc had planned to go out when I got back from dinner. I was thinking like 8 maybe and I would be home. I called at 9 to tell him we were leaving the restaurant. This is the kind of night I enjoy and wish I could have more of. Now I'm at home, Paige has been in bed for hours, and Ronnie is out with Marc having some guy time. So, not only did I get girlfriend time, but I also get total ME time as well. I'm kicked back in the Sponge Bob jammies with Clueless on. Ronnie would never go for watching this one. It's one of those total chick flicks that I usually avoid, but I secretly like. There are a few of them that I like. This just happens to be one of them.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


OK, so I reread that and realized I didn't really address the fun parts of the Wii. First, the balance games. When I first got on it the game checked my balance. Then it asked if I trip much when I walk. Ummm, yep. I'm a klutz. My balance has greatly improved and so has my posture. I'm already realizing my back doesn't hurt as much as before. I'm not really doing the strength training part. The push ups and things didn't interest me when I was in the Army, much less now that I'm out. I can do that at the gym. The aerobics games are pretty good. I can't hula hoop in real life, but I'm a PRO on Fit! I'm even enjoying step aerobics on Fit. Now for the best part, Yoga. I so LOVE LOVE LOVE the yoga part! I can stretch and relax so well. There aren't a lot of poses, around 12 to 15 I think. But, they're fun. And it's just starting to show me how I can put them together on the game.

You do all of this on the balance board. The board is able to tell you where your center of gravity is and how well you've done on the games. The more you play the game, the more activities you unlock. The more you unlock, the more fun you have.

I Heart Video Games!

I thought I would do a blog on how much I love my Wii Fit. Then I thought about it last night and realized I don't just love Wii Fit, I love video games in general. Starting with Atari. I had one. When they first came out, too. We would come home from school, rush through chores, and start playing. Usually me and my cousin Nancy. We had all the cool games: Pong, Tanks, Breakout. We even had the paddle controls! That started my love of video games.

I took the Nintendo route. Ronnie took the Sony route. Over the years I had Nintendo 64, Sega Genesis, Gamecube. I've also had Gameboys in black & in color, as well as Gameboy Advanced & Advance SP. Currently I have a DS. Ronnie has had Playstation 1 & 2. We've played with a PSP, and neither one of us really wants one, we're happy with our DS's. By the way, we have 2, one for each of us.

When the Wii and PS3 came out, it was like a video game system showdown in our house. We each looked into the system we wanted. I won. We bought a Wii. The final win over was when he played one at Gamestop. After that he had to have one. This was a week after it came out. The hunt was on. Finally, I found one in January, 2007. I had to argue down a sales lady at Walmart. But, I walked out of there with it. FYI, if it's on the shelf they have to sell it. It doesn't matter if they say it was a mistake and was supposed to be held for the Sunday ad.

Since purchasing the Wii lots of people have been over and played it. Some of those even have a PS3. Is it odd that a college student with a PS3 asked to trade us for the Wii? Yeah, I thought so too. We have created Mii's for lots of people. Our collection of games has grown. I tend to like puzzle games. In that line we've got Elebits (super fun!), Ramon Raving Rabbids, Harry Potter, Carnival Games. Ronnie likes superhero and driving games. So, we have Need for Speed Carbon, Marvel Alliance and Resident Evil Umbrella Chronicles. Our accessories are growing as well to include a steering wheel, a gun, and several Wiimotes & nunchuks.

Our latest game is the Wii Fit. They are really hard to find. An online friend shared a site with us, Great site. It allowed me to find a Wii Fit in stock at a local store. It was the only store in my town with it in stock. Even better? It was Sears, in the mall, next to my office building. I called Ronnie to ask if I could buy it. (In our house any frivolous purchase over $50 needs to be OK'ed.) He said sure, if I would use it. Yeah, I've used it. And so has he. And so has Paige. It's a fun game. More importantly, it really does give you a work out. By the time I'm done I can feel it in my legs especially. I really like that it tells me my weight, BMI, and how to lower it. I do still go to the gym. I do this on top of the gym. It makes me feel like I'm doing something about my weight. Even if you don't go to the gym, this can give you a good workout. And when you consider the price, $249 for a Wii, and $90 for Fit, it's cheaper than a membership. Lots more fun too.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Hand, Footh, Mouth Disease

I had intended for my next blog to be an homage to Wii Fit. Then life stepped in. Saturday Paige woke up with a bit of a rash on her face. I didn't think anything of it and went on with our day. We went to visit my parent, aunts and uncles as they installed a new floor in Granny's foyer & kitchen. By the time we got home the rash was on her knee and chest. Then her temperature got up to 102.8. Motrin only brought it down to 101 or so. I got online to my Mommy board to ask and got a couple of different ideas: roseola, fifths disease, strep. All good suggestions, and readng her symptoms seemed to go with parts of each one, but didn't fit any perfectly.

Sunday went about the same. Her fever getting worse in the afternoon. The rash getting more and more red the higher her fever went. She didn't really want to eat anything, but has drank so much juice Ronnie had to run out for more Saturday night. (Oh, and for the record apple juice is good, apple cider is not.) We managed to get through Sunday with a very clingy little girl who wanted to play but then didn't. The only thing consistent was her wanting to be held and snuggled, and to drink apple juice.

Mommy called bright and early this morning and got an appointment with our pediatrician. Dr. Laycock is wonderful!! We officially have hand, foot, mouth disease. I was told to give her plenty of juice, plenty of snuggles, and to keep her home from daycare at least through tomorrow. Ronnie and I are splitting the days. I get the morning shift at home with Paige, and he comes home at noon. I get to escape to work for a few hours at least. The super clingy-ness only lasts so long then she wants to do something only to be held. Ah, the joys of a 2 year old who can't make up her mind!

Maybe next time I can talk about Wii fit.