Monday, August 06, 2012

Happy World Breastfeeding Week!

Here is a recipe that I have made a bunch of times. In addition to being one of the very BEST oatmeal cookies I have ever eaten. They are super duper healthy and delicious. I usually add cranberries, dried cherries, raisins, whatever other dried fruit I have, several handfuls of nuts to add protein and a couple of handfuls of chocolate chips. Whenever I made these for myself or have made them for another mom, my son and husband won't leave them alone. They are very very tasty.

If you're breastfeeding, this recipe will do two things for you: it will help you keep something delicious and easy to eat on hand; and the flax, thick cut oats, wheat germ, and brewer's yeast all promote healthy lactation.

With no further introduction, here it is:

Breastfeeding Cookies/ The BEST (and Best FOR You) Oatmeal Cookies Ever

1 cup butter or margarine
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
4 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons flax seed meal*
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2-3 tablespoons brewer's yeast**
1/4 cup wheat germ
3 cups oats, thick cut if you can get them
1-2 cups chocolate chips (optional)
1 cup of any dried fruit (optional)
1 cup any kind of nuts (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Mix together 2 tablespoons of flaxseed meal and water, set aside for 3-5 minutes.
3. Cream (beat well) margarine and sugar. Add eggs one at a time, mix well. Stir flaxseed mixture and add with vanilla to the margarine mix. Beat until blended.
4. Sift together flour, wheat germ, baking soda, salt and brewer's yeast. Add to margarine mixture.
5. Stir in oats then chips.
6. Drop by tablespoons onto baking sheet, preferably lined with parchment or silpat. (Or press into a cookie sheet to make bars)
7. Bake 10-12 minutes for cookies, 18 minutes for bars.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Talking to Luna

When my son was old enough to start recognizing bodies in the night sky, we introduced him to Luna. They have been good friends ever since.

Matthew often looks for her and asks where she is if he can't see her.

He loves to talk to her. This is, in part, influenced by watching Bear in the Big Blue House. Bear talks to Luna at the end of each episode. One of the reasons I like the show is because the conversations are very gentle and Bear's voice and appearance are very cuddly. Luna, though, has always been Matt's favorite character.

About a month ago, Matthew was having a really hard morning. He didn't want to wake up, getting dressed was a fight, and everything else was a battle. I took a few minutes to go outside and scrape the frost off the car. I stepped out of the house into an astoundingly beautiful, clear, blue morning. The kind you read about in books. I looked up at the sky, which was cloudless, and the last few stars. There was Luna. She was just starting to wane and was still large and round.

It struck me. I hurried inside and told Matt that if he hurried, he would have time to talk to Luna before he left for school. What a motivation that was for him. He raced through the rest of getting ready without a peep and then we went outside and Matt called out to her. He told her he saw her and he waved. He told her hello and that he was glad to see her.

During the drive to school he looked for her and called out whenever he saw her. He had a good day after all.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

This past week was long.

No posts for last week, sorry. Krys and I have been sick. Epic colds. Day- and Ny-quil have helped incrementally, but not enough to really make a huge difference. We've been on antibiotics since Wednesday, but that's not doing the trick either.

So with all the blech and the blerg floating around our house, it's not wonder that things have been...... cranky. VERY cranky.

On Saturday I had some cooking projects I really needed to get done, so I sent Krys and Matt out to get Jamba Juice Coldbusters (aka the Best Thing Ever for a Sore Throat). When they came back, I was about halfway done and really needed to just finish and move one. Poor Matt wanted to help, but only had hot stuff to deal with and nothing toddler-friendly for him to do, so I kept trying to redirect him out of the kitchen. Total FAIL. Epic MeltDown. My kid doesn't usually throw screaming tantrums, but he did. And it was awful.

At this point I had cookies burning in the oven, a hot pan of bacon that needed turning, and a screaming child. Krys was called in for reinforcements.

It was at this point that Krys had a brilliant idea. The bacon I had been cooking didn't have a particular purpose other than I really needed it cooked because it had been in the fridge for a few days and needed to be used. I was thinking of making BLTs or something. Krys made the following recipe. It may not be the most original recipe ever, but man was it the perfect thing for that moment.

Daddy's Grumpies-Be-Gone Loaded Smashed Potatoes

3 serving of instant mashed potatoes cooked according to directions
3-4 slices of cooked thick cut bacon
1 cup of sour cream
1 tbs Italian seasoning
1 handful of Parmesan cheese
1 handful of mozzarella cheese

Combine ingredients. Serve warm. Feel better.

We're still sick, but I'm optimistic for this week.

Friday, February 11, 2011

What we had for dinner and update on Couch to 5k

I made the following recipe for dinner:

Lentil and Macaroni Soup
Serves 6

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 medium carrots, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed with garlic press
1 can (14 ounces) whole tomatoes in puree (or crushed tomatoes in juice, if unavailable)
1 can (14 ounces) vegetable broth
3/4 cup lentils
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon vegetable bullion (if you don't have, add a bit more salt to the soup)
6 cups water
1 pound fresh spinach
3/4 cup elbow macaroni
1 cup fresh basil, chopped
Lemon juice
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

In a nonstick 5-to-6-quart Dutch oven (or large soup pot), heat oil over medium heat until hot. Add carrots, onion and garlic, and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender and golden, about 10 minutes.

Add tomatoes with their puree, broth, lentils, salt, pepper, thyme, bullion and water; heat to boiling, stirring to break up tomatoes with side of spoon. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer until lentils are almost tender, about 20 minutes.

Stir in spinach and macaroni; heat to boiling over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium; cook, uncovered, until macaroni is tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in basil. Serve with Parmesan cheese, if you like, and 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice.

So very very yummy. I didn't follow the recipe exactly. (I rarely follow recipes to the letter.) I had all the ingredients and I just kind of added things by the handful. I made a pound of lentils and added the cooked lentils until it looked right and had the right flavor. I also used wagon wheel pasta instead of macaroni because that's what I had on hand.

What a great starting point!

The couch to 5k is going well, but I'm starting to worry that I'm never going to get up to actually running. I can walk for the full half hour really easily, but when I jog I can only go for about 20 yards before the asthma really starts to get to me. When i just keep it to walking, I feel great and like I got a great work out.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

How about a Meatloaf Night?

I love to cook. More than that, I love to cook things that make me happy when I eat them. This is probably really cliche of me, but I love having a meal on the table when my husband gets home. Not everyone gets satisfaction from that, but I find it fulfilling. Cooking is a talent that I have and that I love to cultivate. I cook for the people I love to tell them that I love them

Meatloaf is one of those dishes that I love because I can dress it up (serving it with steak sauce and roasted red potatoes) or dress down (making meatball subs). This is a recipe that I came up with after reviewing several meatloaf recipes and not finding a recipe that I liked well enough to keep using. I assume that it makes good leftovers, but I don't know for sure. I never have enough left over to find out. lol

Julia's Italian Meatloaf

1 small to medium onion, diced
1-2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 lb extra lean ground beef (alternate a higher fat ground beef for meatballs)
1 tbs Italian Seasoning (I like Pampered Chef's)
1 cup bread crumbs
1 tbs salt
1 8 oz can of tomato sauce (not paste!)
1 egg
1 1/2 c Parmesan cheese
1-2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
Ketchup (0ptional)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Cook garlic and onion in olive oil until caramelized, cool. In a large bowl, add everything but the ketchup, combine by hand.

Press into an 8x5 loaf pan. (Lining the pan with foil or using a disposable pan before baking prevents mess.) Cook for 50-60 min.

Let the loaf rest, cover with ketchup.

This recipe also makes yummy meat balls. I usually double the recipe and add and extra egg. From there, just form the mixture into balls and bake at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes.

P.S. The couch to 5k thing is going well! I walked again last night and I'll go again today.

I'm doing WHAT?

I'm starting a running program with my awesome ward girlfriends this week. Seriously.

I am SO excited to get this body into better shape! I have some concerns that I'm doing my best to quiet, though.

One of the biggest worries got resolved today. What to do with Matt? Tomorrow, I'm going to Clearfield to buy a jogging stroller. A real one. We have a bike trailer that's really awesome and has a front tire that you can use, but the problem is that it doesn't swivel. At all. So it's really difficult to walk/jog/run with since you can't turn with it. I tried to find a conversion kit for it, but had no luck finding one. So now if I want to do my daily running (OMG, I'm going to be doing running! DAILY!) and I need to take Matt with me, I can put him in the stroller.

One of my other concerns is the time. I know that I just need to make it a priority and do it. I think once I just get going on it, it'll just become second nature. What I want to do is start coming home from school to change and then get right out there for my run. That is, unless I can talk Krys into running with me. I have serious doubts over whether or not I can, but I'd LOVE to have him in this with me.

Monday, January 31, 2011


This year I feel like I'm ready to take on some of the things that have been on my to-do list for several years. Only this year I feel like I'm actually equipped to take them on. The following are goals that I want to work on this year.

1. Eat healthier (eat less fried stuff, more veggies, and less meat).
2. Exercise!! (Walk, do yoga, ride bikes, DO SOMETHING!)
4. Give this blog more personality.
5. Get our finances healthier. Spend less, save more. Track where the money goes.

I'm hopeful. I'm optimistic. I'm ready for some changes.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

I have a two-year-old.

I know there are much more parent-ally terrifying phrases to say, but until I have to say something like "I have an eight-year-old" or (even worse) "I have a teenager," I'm going to say that's one of the scariest (or maybe exhilarating?) phrases I have uttered in a really long time.

At his 2 year appointment, Matthew shocked us all by bounding from 5th percentile in weight and height to 18th and 8th respectively. His head is in the 25th percentile, which makes complete sense because it has to house an impressive brain like his father's.

The older he gets, the more his ways of thinking and doing things become evidently more like Krys. He's an extremely methodical toddler. He has certain ways of doing things and he has very well thought out plans. I can't wait to see if he's at good at math as I think he'll be.

Matthew has very impressive verbal skills. He really knows his way around a sentence. He says thinks like "Wheres cool buss?" (where's the school bus) and "Yook! COOOL BUSS" (Look mother! I have located the school bus!). He doesn't sign as much as he used to, but that's partially because we don't need him to anymore. His elocution is pretty darn good for a little guy and we can mostly get the drift of what he's saying to us.

His gross and fine motor skills are fantastic. He climbs, can open some doors, jumps, twirls, runs and turns on a dime, and colors like a maniac.

Matthew, as he has always been, perfectly himself.