November 30, 2007

November 28, 2007

A Manly Man

So last night we had tomato basil soup and cheesy garlic bread for dinner. A perfectly fine (and quick) meal for a chilly fall evening, if you ask me. And, to my surprise, the kids loved it! I mean they sat down and ate their entire meals without a peep (ok, maybe one or two peeps, but not the usual 450). Anyway, while I am heating up the soup on the stove, hubby comes into the kitchen, takes one look at the pot and says: "Are you gonna put anything in that?" Meaning meat. In his mind, no meal is complete without some good old carne . Pizza? Needs sausage and pepperoni. BLT sandwich? Needs turkey or ham. Fettucini Alfredo? Needs chicken. Are you getting the picture?

But the poor dear "toughed it out" last night and ate a vegetarian meal with no complaints. Though he did say: "This would be great with some sausage in it..." and "Imagine how this would taste with pieces of lobster!"

My hubby -- truly a manly man.

Tonight we're having beef.

November 26, 2007

What to Buy? What to Buy?

I refuse to wander aimlessly into a mall in search of "the perfect Christmas gift" for the folks on my list. Mainly because I do not have time to wander aimlessly (haven't had that since before August 2004) and also because, to me, that would be extremely frustrating. I mean, let's face it - shopping without a plan and a purpose is only fun if it's, well, for me. Heh heh. Last year I pretty much did the bulk of our holiday shopping online and it was dreamy, so I am going for it again this year; only I have no idea what to buy. I would love to stay away from the Macys and the Amazons and purchase unique gifts from boutique or mommade/homemade stores. Any ideas? I decided to go back and check out all of the websites that I've been saving to my "Favorites" since August 2004 to revisit when I "had some time." I did find a couple of good prospects that I had forgotten about, but I still need a few more.

Also - where (oh where?) will you all be buying your holiday toys for your little ones? It seems like Target and Toys R Us are out of the picture in light of all the recalls. Too bad - I was looking forward to getting the girls the Fisher-Price Loving Family Dollhouse, but now I won't be able to do it in good conscience.

Too bad there really isn't a Santa. He would make my life so much easier...

November 21, 2007

Never a Dull Moment...

Is there such a thing as blog neglect? If so, I am totally guilty. Things have been so hectic around these parts!
  • Chatterbox has been having the worst case of nighttime indigestion. For the past week she has woken up out of her sleep complaining of stomach pains. And she's even vomited in our bed 3 times. Poor thing. We are wondering if she is developing an allergy of some sort. Maybe to her milk?

  • Chatterbox is also going through something at school. She's had potty accidents twice in two weeks, which is totally unlike her. I have a sneaking suspicion that she doesn't really like the (grumpy) teacher's aide, so we are keeping an eye on that. We are considering asking to have her switch classes.

  • After a friend's birthday dinner over the weekend the valet banged up my new car while parking it. SO annoying. They have agreed to repair it though.

  • I am now a teacher in the children's ministry at my church. It's fun but of course is another thing added to my full plate.

  • Friday hubby and I went out with some friends to dinner and a concert. It was a wonderful night out.

  • Plans are finally in full swing for our move to the Atlanta area. So we are preparing to do a few renovations to the house to get it in prime selling condition.

  • Last but not least, the holidays are here! Let the madness begin.

Time willing, I plan to be back in blogging mode next week.

Happy Thanksgiving!

November 15, 2007

Love It! Thursdays: Grocery Delivery

Whew! It's been such a hectic couple of weeks. Hopefully, I'll be back on the blog in full force next week. Last night as I was sorting through the mail and watching ANTM, I came across some coupons for free grocery delivery for the Peapod by Giant grocery delivery service. Jackpot! I am so using these asap. So anyway, I figured today would be the perfect time to tell you all about it...

Back when I was on maternity leave with Giggles I received a coupon for free grocery delivery for Peapod, and since my mom used to always rave about her grocery delivery service, I thought I'd give it a shot. Well knock my socks off! It was awesome. You go online, register (it's free) and start shopping. You can browse the grocery store by aisle just as if you were actually in the store, or you can just type in what you are looking for and it'll be pulled up onto your screen. Once you're done shopping, you choose a delivery time (they offer discounts for "off" times like 6am or 3pm), enter your payment info, and ta da!You're done.

The great thing about ordering online is that the groceries come from the warehouse, not the regular store, so the items are all super fresh and there is often a better selection to choose from. And you can change and update your order up until a couple of hours before delivery, so forgetting something isn't a big deal. My first experience with it was so great that I've done is several times since, even paying the delivery fee once (it was around $6).
The only downsides to this service are (1) the delivery fee, but really it's not unreasonable; and (2) you have to pay close attention when purchasing items like produce for quantities (i.e. at the grocery you may pick up a 2lb bag of grapes, but online you buy by the pound, so entering the number "1" as the quantity may get you 1lb of grapes, which may be less than you expected).

So here's my verdict:

Grocery Delivery Service = $6 - unless you have a coupon!

Not having to deal with getting to the store, kids in tow, finding out certain items are out of stock, waiting in a long checkout line, loading and unloading the car, and realizing you forgot to get the butter = PRICELESS.

I give the Peapod by Giant Grocery Delivery Service:

4 gavels: "Liked it. I would definitely recommend it."

November 11, 2007

Tis the Season

This is usually my favorite time of year. Last night, in the spirit of the season, I took the kids to a tree lighting ceremony. There were lots of carols, Gospel music (for a second we thought they were going to pass the collection plate) free giveaways (like Starbucks coffee and undies from Aerie), and an appearance by a former American Idol contestant. The event ended with a huge fireworks show and was just really nice.

But somehow, the whole thing put the pressure on and made me more anxious than anything. I started thinking of all the shopping I had to get done, the Christmas cards I have to order (and the picture to take), the winter clothes I need to sort out (the weather has finally cooled down and of course, the kids fit into nothing), the new clothes I need to buy, so on and so forth. To make it worse, my in-laws, whom we always spend Thanksgiving with, have decided they want to travel for Thanksgiving. And now they are talking about flying somewhere, hoping we'll follow. Flying all of us anywhere will blow the entire holiday budget so that's not going to happen. Basically, I'll be cooking. Not that I don't like cooking, but my mother-in-law is such a great cook and her down-home favorites do not compare to anything I'm capable of doing. Sweet potato souffle, real creamed corn, a fried turkey, the works! Who's going to make all of that?

My shoulders are all tense just thinking about the holidays. It's so not like me. I'm going to have to get back into the spirit of things. And to make things more manageable, I'm going to adhere to MamaLaw #2. I already have some holiday to-do lists and I will stay on top things. After all, there is still plenty of time.

November 08, 2007

Love It! Thursdays

I feel like sh!t today - I think I picked up a virus from DD. She's been carrying around one version or another of a cold for the past couple of months. So, it's finally made its way to mama.

Anyway, I think that my feeling today is fitting for the topic of this week's LIT - diaper pails. I know it's not the best topic in the world, because no one wants to talk about this disgusting topic. BUT, when your entire home smells like poop, you'll find yourself looking for options.

On the advice of veteran mom J. Jones, I purchased the diaper champ before DD arrived. It has worked out well considering that DD turns 2 years in two weeks and I've had the diaper champ all along. This diaper pail is almost smell proof and it uses any size or type of bag available. It's pretty large too, so I typically only change the bag once a week. When I get concerned about the scent, I throw a packet of Arm'n'Hammer baking soda scent remover in the pail and voila, it's all good.

I give the Diaper Champ

5 gavels - Loved it! Can't live without it!

Please share with us what types of pails you use and remember to link back to us.

November 07, 2007

Odds & Ends

(1) A friend of J. Ny's and mine was interviewed for the Women for Obama website. Very cool. Check out her interview and leave a comment!

(2) I went to a hip hop dance class last night and it was big fun! I desperately need to do something to keep me active. The teacher, Lorenzo, is the choreographer for Chuck "The Godfather of Go-Go" Brown's latest video that finished shooting yesterday. So maybe you'll see me in a video soon. Just don't hold your breath.

(3) Something's up with Chatterbox this week. She loses her mind at the drop of a hat. Yesterday she threw a tantrum because I didn't cut her grapes into quarters. The day before that she threw a tantrum because she didn't want to wear tights under her skirt to school. We had the same battle Sunday when she refused to wear her tights under her dress for church. It was so ugly that she ended up not going. I'm not sure what it is, but I hope she's ok. Any thoughts?

(4) Giggles was crawling around the hallway yesterday (though she's been walking for over 8 months) and our nanny said "In my country (Peru), when an older child starts crawling that means that the mom is expecting another baby." HA. Giggles, you betta' act like you know and get to walking.

November 02, 2007

The Ballerina & The Cheetah

November 01, 2007

LOVE IT! Thursdays: Keeping Organized

So I am an organizer/planner junkie. For as long as I can remember, I have always loved calendars, agendas and the like. In fact, one of my best friends used to tease me in college that she would hide my agenda to see if I would be able to survive without it. Hardee Har-Har, Tricie.

The fact is, that I like writing things down - appointments, birthdays, meetings, lists - and planners help me keep myself organized. Especially now that I have two small children and zero brain cells left, I need a planner in order to remember, well, anything. The thing is - all agendas are not created equal. No siree.

I started the year out with the Polestar Family Calendar. It was pretty good. Enough space on each page to write down what you need, place for important numbers, etc. And I liked the pockets on the inside covers where I could store loose pieces of paper. Because I tend to have one or two of those lying around. The problem wasn't cute. I mean the picture on the cover was ok but I am (in my mind) and young, hip and stylish mom who is not yet prepared for accessories adorned with oil paintings. Ya dig? To its credit, the planner was only $15. Which is a steal in planner world.

I give The Polestar Family Calendar:

4 gavels: "Liked it. I would definitely recommend it."

Then, one day I was in a stationery shop and came across the coveted MomAgenda. I had been eyeying this one for a while but could never justify spending over $40 on an agenda for myself. I even bought one for another mom friend and a MyAgenda for a girlfriend. They are so pretty (mine is green). And chic. And spill-proof. Just perfect. I've been using it for the past several months and I love it. It has spaces for me to write in my kids' names to keep track of their schedules too. And spaces for the dinner menu for each weeknight. The only thing I miss is the inside cover pockets for my loose papers. Of which, as I may have mentioned, I have one or two.

I give the MomAgenda:

4 gavels: "Liked it. I would definitely recommend it."

Next I plan on trying the Sandra Boynton Moms Family Desk Planner. I hear that's the gold standard in mom planners. When I tried to get it a couple of months ago, the 2007s were all sold out and the 2008s weren't available yet, so I got the MomAgenda instead. But I'm coming for it. Count on it.

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