Friday, April 25, 2008

Thank You Prayer

After 3 beautiful, sunny, warm, perfect spring days at the beginning of this week, the past two days have been yucky: cloudy, rainy, and cold. We spent pretty much all of our time outside at the beginning of the week and Allie loved every single minute of it. Each morning she would wake up and announce "Summer is here-let's go outside and play!" So, outside we went on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. And then Thursday came. Allie woke up, looked out the window and said "I think there are some nasty clouds a comin'. Let's go outside!" It was literally pouring down rain at the time. And so I explained to her that today would be an inside day because it was kind of yucky and rainy outside. Before we ate lunch, Allie wanted to pray for us and her prayer went something like this:

Thank you God for Allie and Zach and Mommy and Daddy.
Thank you God for this nice yucky day.
Jesus name. Amen.
So.....
Have you thanked God for the "nice yucky day" yet today? :)

Foody Friday - Side Dishes

This week's Foody Friday theme hosted by my friend Jenny is side dishes. I am also often at a loss for what side dishes to serve with dinner and usually end up with the same ole' classic mashed potatoes, baked potatoes, rice, veggies, bread, fruit, or a salad. I know. Not very creative.

Take for instance tonight....

I'm having my parents over for dinner so I'm trying out a new recipe for Chicken Lasagna with spinach, carrots, mushrooms, and a white cheese sauce. However, I'm actually calling this dish Chicken Casserole as Ben and my Dad previously informed me that Chicken Lasagna sounded absolutely disgusting. Apparently, it has something to do with how you have a preconceived notion of what Lasagna should be, so to say 'Chicken Lasagna' you are expecting something very different than what is served and the end result is apparently gross and disappointing....I don't really know if that makes sense (if someone understands, please feel free to explain it to me as well)....but, due to that conversation we are now having Chicken Casserole...or maybe I should call it Chicken Hot Dish seeing as we are in Minnesota and I believe that would be the more accurate terminology. Anyway, I tweaked the recipe a little bit to suit our tastes and that always makes me nervous because I'm not sure how it will turn out. We'll see. I'll post my tweaked recipe later on if it actually turns out well.

Wow...that was a long tangent. The original point in telling you what we are having for dinner tonight was to share my very boring side dish choices. Along with the Chicken Hot Dish we will be enjoying french bread, steamed broccoli, and cantaloupe. See...not very original or creative. Same old, same old. Hopefully this Foody Friday theme will help me out of my side dish rut!

With that said, I am including the recipe for my most favorite side dish of all time. I admit, it is not very practical and I probably only make it once or twice a year, but still, it is my ABSOLUTE favorite! I have been known to actually eat this leftover for a meal in and of itself because I love it so much. Here goes:

Sweet Potato Souffle
6 large sweet potatoes (4 cups or 2-1/2 pounds)
6 Tablespoons brown sugar
2 eggs
1/4 cup Orange Juice
2 Tablespoons melted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
Topping:
3 Tablespoons softened butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup chopped pecans

1. Bake potatoes at 375 degrees for 75 minutes. Remove and cool for 1-2 hours. Peel Potatoes and scoop out.
2. Stir in brown sugar, eggs, butter, OJ, and salt. Mash together.
3. Place potato mixture in an 8x8 baking dish.
4. For the topping, cut the butter into the sugar and add pecans.
5. Sprinkle topping over potato mixture.
6. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

(Thanks to my mom for this delicious side dish recipe!!)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

ABC Meme

Well, thanks to my friend Courtenay, I have been tagged to participate in another meme. Since I have felt like I don't have much to write lately, I am going to particpate.

Do You Know Your ABC's:
A: Attached or Single? Attached
B: Best Friend? Ben
C: Cake or Pie? Ok, this is definitely not a fair question because it totally depends on what type of cake or pie is being served. And, actually, I believe I will have to answer that I would take both. :) German Chocolate Cake with Coconut Frosting is my absolute favorite cake. Pie...hmmm....its a tie between Coconut Cream and my mom's chocolate pudding pie (which, by the way, I have failed to make the chocolate pie EVERY single time--it always turns out runny).
D: Day of Choice? Normally it is Friday because we have the whole weekend together as a family. But, since Ben works every single Saturday now, my new favorite day is Sunday because Sunday is the day we have all together as a family!
E: Essential Item? Oooo...another tough one. Right now it is a tie between Oxi-Clean stain remover and the Magic Eraser.
F: Favorite Color? Red
G: Gummy Bears or Worms? Gummy worms....in vanilla pudding and with chocolate oreo cookie crumbs--I think it is called dirt cake or something (obviously I have an issue with anything sweet).
H: Hometown? I guess it would be Waukesha, WI seeing as I have lived there the longest and that is where I graduated high school. However, I usually answer this question with the Twin Cities, MN because we love it here and it definitely feels like home to us!
I: Indulgence? Ummm...duh....anything with sugar in it.
J: January or July? July, we get to go on vacation!!!
K: Kids? Oh yea, I have those, 2 of them to be exact. I guess I've been ignoring them to fill out this meme.
L: Life isn’t complete without? Obviously, anything with sugar in it :) Ok, just kidding. Seriously, God, my family and friends.
M: Marriage date? June 7, 2003
N: Number of brothers and sisters? 1 sister (and she's getting married next May!!!) and 1 brother (he just went to prom last weekend!!!)
O: Oranges or apples? Apples--they make better desserts
P: Phobias and fears? Heights and Spiders
Q: Quote? I just found this one on a friend's facebook page and I laughed out loud, literally: "I think running is like screaming; it should only be done in an emergency so that people take you seriously."
R: Reason to smile? Allie and Zach
S: Season of choice? Fall
T: Tag two people? Jenny W, Amy L
U: Unknown fact about me? I am Vitamin D deficient-I have the blood test to prove it and am now on Vitamin D supplements (exciting...I know).
V: Vegetable? Fresh Green Beans with Lemon Pepper
W: Worst habit? Eating dessert
X: X-ray or Ultrasound? Ultrasounds--lots--while preggo and also one for my thyroid. Does an MRI count as an X-ray?? If not, it should count for something--especially seeing as I was 7 months preggo when they made me lie motionless on my back in one of those tubes for 45 minutes to an hour--because I had a migraine "aura"--which by the time the MRI was completed, my "aura" turned into a headache (not as bad as a migraine, but a headache, nonetheless) because of all the loud clicking and knocking AND I could also barely sit up because I thought my back was going to snap in two.
Y: Your favorite food? Dessert
Z: Zodiac sign? Gemini, maybe...not sure about that one.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Is that really how the song goes?

During breakfast this morning Allie was exuberantly singing at the top of her lungs (which in and of itself is not an unusual occurrence). However, I'm not quite sure I've ever heard this particular rendition of Hallelujah-Praise Ye the Lord:

Allie: "Hallelu-, Hallelu-, Hallelu-, Hallelujah! CRA-ZY de Lord!"
Silence as I try to decipher what was just sung. . .
Allie: "Hallelu-, Hallelu-, Hallelu-, Hallelujah! CRA-ZY de Lord!"
Me: "Don't you mean 'Praise ye the Lord?'"
Allie: "Yep: CRA-ZY de Lord!"

Friday, April 18, 2008

Allie-ism of the Day

Allie: "Mommy, you are really, REALLY big."
Me: "Oh?"
Allie: "And Grandma is really REALLY big. And so is Daddy."
Me: "Big?"
Allie: "Yes, really big, way high!"
Me: "Oh, you mean tall. Mommy is really REALLY tall?"
Allie: "Yep, Mommy is really REALLY big!"

Foody Friday

My friend Jenny over at A-Latte-Talk is hosting a Foody Friday: the theme - your favorite recipe. Click here to view Jenny's blog and get TONS of great recipes. Because I am sure that I love food just as much (and quite possibly even more) than Jenny, I am excited to participate! Since we have been out of an oven for the past month (refer to previous post for further explanation), I thought it only fitting to include my favorite crock pot recipe. It has become a regular favorite around our home and I have also served it many times for company. And the best part - it is WAY EASY!

Beef Burgundy

1-1/2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 pound whole fresh mushrooms, halved (I actually use a whole package of the baby button mushrooms)
4 medium carrots, chopped
1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed golden mushroom soup, undiluted
1 large onion, cut into thin wedges
1/2 cup Burgundy wine or beef broth
1/4 cup quick-cooking tapioca
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Hot cooked egg noodles

In a 5-qt. slow cooker, combine the first 10 ingredients. Cover and cook on low for 5 1/2 to 6 1/2 hours or until meat is tender. Serve over noodles. Yield: 6 servings. (Taken from Taste of Home's Simple and Delicious magazine-January/February 2007)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Oven Saga

For over a month now we have been living without an oven. Dinner at the Dzioba home has been confined to lots of crock pot meals, stove top dinners, electric skillet creations, sandwiches, and so on. Needless to say, I am getting rather sick of the same 10 or so meals that I have been preparing over and over again due to our current oven situation. I could really go for a good meat loaf. I don't even like meat loaf, and yet, meat loaf baked in an oven is what I desire. However, even more traumatic than my unquenched desire for meat loaf is the fact that I have been limited to the grocery store bakery as a means to satisfy my sweet tooth. I'm tellin' ya, Rainbow butter pound cake is not cutting it. :)

Getting back to the story at hand: August 2007 marks the starting point in what has now become the never-ending saga of our oven dilemma. We were having problems opening and closing our oven for over a year, but this past August the hinge finally decided to completely rust through at the most ideal of times, trapping our dinner inside. Thankfully, Ben and his dad were able to pry the oven far enough open before our dinner burned so that we could stick some tongs inside and maneuver it out. As we ate dinner, I was actually secretly excited at the prospect of finally getting a brand new oven! The old one never cooked evenly anyway and the knob that displayed the temperature settings was all rubbed off and not working properly. Plus, it was really ugly. And, since ugliness doesn't really justify the purchase of a new oven, we had been stuck with it. Now that it was officially broken and beyond repair, a new oven was right within my grasp.

Sad to say, my excitement was short lived as we began to realize finding a replacement oven would not be as easy as originally thought. The broken oven was a double wall oven, complete with broiler on the bottom, and the cabinets in our kitchen were built to accommodate that particular model. So, our two options to remedy the broken oven were: 1. find a wall oven that was exactly the same size to fit into the old one's place or 2. remodel our kitchen. I was all up for the kitchen remodel, but unfortunately that wasn't feasible (or so I've been told...by my husband...who has no interest in remodeling projects at the present time...or repainting the living room...which he doesn't know that I already have paint samples for...and have picked out the colors for from said paint samples...but I guess that is a whole other post...).

So, we began looking online and found a Frigidaire oven that was an exact fit and matched all the other appliances in our kitchen. We headed to Sears the next day to make the purchase. Of course, the particular oven we bought was not in stock so we had to wait about a week and a half to have it delivered. After the oven delivery, Ben spent the afternoon getting it installed properly and we were really excited to use our new oven!

And we used it. A lot. Until it began to break again this past January. The same hinge that rusted out on the old oven also began rusting out on this new oven and the oven door was again becoming impossible to open or close. At least it didn't break completely until March. And this time the oven broke AFTER I took out a pan of brownies that was to go to our MOPS Mom's Night Out event. I was surprisingly not that irritated by this recent development as the new oven was covered under the manufacturer's warranty and I figured I would have it fixed or replaced by the next week. No big deal.

So, the nice oven repairman came the following week and informed me the oven was beyond repair and that he would contact the manufacturer for a replacement. Ok. Another week. Still not a big deal.

The following week, the manufacturer never called. So, I called the manufacturer and was pleasantly surprised to discover that they are still trying to determine whether or not to replace my oven. The last time I checked, the oven was still broken. It's not like it had been magically repaired or replaced. I'm just not quite sure what the decision process all encompassed seeing as it was fairly evident to anyone that entered our kitchen that the oven was BROKEN.

A couple days later I got the call from the manufacturer that Appliance Mart would be replacing my oven. Alleluia! New oven by next week!

Not quite.

Friendly Dave from Appliance Mart told me that this particular oven is a special order item and it would be at least a week and a half before it would arrive at their store. Now, I'm getting a little irritated.

I tried to wait patiently. Really, I did. But, I ended up calling friendly Dave after a week to see what was happening with my oven and shockingly, there was still no word on my oven. Actually, friendly Dave didn't even really remember me. Hmmm....I was now annoyed. I had Ben do the calling from here on out as he is a lot more calm in situations such as this. I actually believe he called twice and didn't get much further than my previous efforts which did make me feel a little better.

Finally, last week, after almost four weeks since my oven was supposedly ordered, I got the phone call I had been eagerly anticipating for over a month. My oven is in the building! I scheduled the installation for Tuesday between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Finally.

At 9:55 a.m. on Tuesday morning the phone rings. My giddy and excited hello was met with the most intriguing question from the gentleman on the other end of the line. The conversation went something like this:

"Hello!"
"Um...this is so-and-so (I honestly don't remember his name) from Applaince Mart. Do you have your oven at your house?"
"Well, ya, I have the broken one."
"No, not the broken one. Do you have the new one?"
"Um...no. Why? Should I?"
"Well, hmm....it seems we have lost your oven."
"You mean it wasn't delivered yet."
"No, it was delivered here on Friday. I think it's lost."
"What do you mean you think it's lost?"
"I mean, we can't find it. This is a really big place, you know."
"You're serious."
"Um...yep."
"OK, so are you going to find it?"
"I hope so."
"Do you know when you are going to find it?"
"Well, I can tell you if we don't find it within the next 10 minutes, I will not be coming to install your oven today. And, I'm thinking we are probably not going to find it, so is this all ok with you ma'am?"
"Well, do I have a choice?"
"I guess not. I mean, I can't really do anything if we can't find the oven."
"Alright."
"Alright, have a good day!"

Tuesday goes by. No oven. I still do not understand how you can lose an oven. I guess I just don't get it. You lose things like pens or car keys or mittens or your coat. One time Ben lost his wallet and I've lost my cell phone. Losing a pet like a dog or a cat makes sense because an animal can physically move from one location to another. But, honestly, can someone enlighten me as to how you lose an oven??!! It is not like this oven is small. And, it isn't living, so it's not like it walked from one location to another. I am baffled. I really don't get it.
I did however get a call later Tuesday afternoon that my oven had been found and would be installed on Thursday afternoon. I did not ask details. At this point, I really did not want to know.

And, today the impossible was finally made possible. My oven appeared: Complete with two men in a big white van who quickly and efficiently took my old broken oven away and brought my shiny new working oven through my front door and accurately installed it into the hole in my kitchen cabinet. They made sure that it wasn't leaking gas (wasn't that nice of them?) and even preheated it for me so that I knew it was working properly.

After such an ordeal one would assume I would christen the first use of my new oven with a big fat meatloaf or maybe even a batch of homemade chocolate chip cookies. Not the case. For dinner tonight I made Green Giant Chicken Stir Fry on the cook top. I made some rice in the microwave. And I used my brand new working oven to heat some frozen Asian Sensation Pork Egg Rolls.
Go figure.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Allie-isms

Me: "Allie, where are you? Come here - I need your help!"
Ben: "Allie, I think someone is calling you-someone needs your help! Who is it?"
Allie: "I think it must be the Lord."

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Thanks!

Thanks for all the "home remedy" tips for coughing. I decided to put Vick's Vapor Rub on the bottoms of Allie's feet before bedtime last night. I also gave her some warm apple juice mixed with honey to drink before she went to bed. She only woke up coughing once at around midnight. I again gave her some warm juice to drink (I probably should have re-applied the Vick's to her feet-- I will do that tonight if she wakes up again) and she was done coughing and back to sleep by around 12:45 a.m. Hooray! This is a VAST improvement from this past week when we would literally be up with her for hours. Thanks also for the tips regarding herbal/natural cough remedies. I will probably try those next if things do not continue improving.

Have a great weekend everyone! Ben is working all day (and probably into the evening), so we are off to my parents' house to spend the day and grill some burgers for dinner. Allie keeps asking me daily if summer is here yet-I think grilling hamburgers is a good sign that it is definitely getting closer! We'll just ignore all that white stuff on the ground for now. :)

Friday, April 11, 2008

Our Cheerleader

Allie: "Look! I have pom-poms!"
Me: "You have to shake them and cheer 'Go Team, Go!'"
Allie (while rigorously shaking hot pink pom-poms above her head):
"Go Team, Go!"
Me: "Maybe you should ask Daddy what team to cheer for."
Allie: "Daddy, what team?!"
Ben: "The Green Bay Packers."
Allie (again, while rigorously shaking hot pink pom-poms above her head):
"GO GREEN BEAN PACKERS!"

Need Advice!

Allie has had a cold since before Easter and although this week the runny nose and watery eyes are better, the coughing has gotten a lot worse! We had her checked out by the doctor on Tuesday and there is nothing in her lungs. She just has a terribly nasty cold that is not going away anytime soon.

Anyway, I'm writing for some advice on alternative cough remedies. I'm hesitant to give Allie any over the counter cold/cough medicine because of all the negative things I've read regarding such medication for small children. Her coughing has been keeping her (and us) up most of the night, every night this week. We have a humidifier in her room and bring her water throughout the night, but it doesn't seem to be helping at all. Plus, because she now gets up to go to the bathroom at night, we like to keep her fluid intake to a minimum so we are not up even more helping her potty, in addition to the coughing. Basically, we are all in need of some good sleep! :)

So, if you know of any tried and true children's cough remedies, please let me know!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Zach's 6-Month Check-Up

Yesterday Zach went in for his 6-month well check doctor's appointment. I wasn't feeling well (actually, that is an understatement, I felt like a truck hit me) so Ben offered to stay home from work and take both Allie and Zach to the 9:15 a.m. appointment. I definitely took him up on his offer! I was a little bummed to not be going along, but was thankful for the time to rest, kid-free.

The appointment went great. I am so proud of Ben: He survived his first doctor's visit with both kids, and without me along! He said Allie was extremely well behaved and even answered the doctor's questions about Zach's development before Ben could get in a word edgewise. There were shots, which is never fun, that resulted in Zach's lo-grade temperature for the rest of day.

Here are our little guy's stats as of yesterday:
Height: 27 3/4 inches (90th percentile)
Weight: 18 pounds 15 ounces (75th percentile)
Head: 17 inches (30th percentile)

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Zach is Eating Baby Food!

Last Thursday Zach entered the world of culinary delight with his very first tasty bowl of Gerber's Baby Rice Cereal. I set the camcorder up on the mini tripod and placed it on the table, Ben was armed and ready with the digital camera, and after we scarfed down a few pieces of pizza ourselves, we all anxiously awaited Zach's reaction as I lifted the spoonful of white mush to his lips. And.....he hated it. He absolutely HATED it. I have never, EVER, in the past six months of Zach's life seen him make such a disgusted and confused looking face. He quickly spit everything out of his mouth and onto his bib. So, I scooped up another spoonful and tried again. This time I basically had to pry his mouth open to get the spoon in. He still hated it and was on the verge of tears! Sad to say, at this point, we were all laughing pretty hard, Allie included. Although the laughing may seem a bit strange (especially seeing as the poor little guy was very distraught), it ended up being a good thing as Zach revelled in the fact that he alone was the sole focus of our dinner that evening. Unfortunately, the attention payed to Zach resulted in a little jealousy on Allie's part and we ended up cleaning up a bit more pizza off of the floor than after a normal meal. Although Zach did not finish his bowl of cereal, he was actually able to get a few bites swallowed and not splattered all over his bib. By the end of the meal, he was much more content to simply suck his thumb instead of trying to eat more. So, I happily cleaned up his dish and spoon and began looking forward to trying again the next day.








Friday during lunch marked the second time Zach would attempt to eat a solid meal. Once again, I mixed the rice cereal and lifted the spoon up to his mouth. This time, he literally tried to pry the spoon out of my hand! Zach had no interest in eating, but was determined to get a hold of the spoon. This made things a little more difficult. So, after a couple failed attempts to get the spoon in his mouth and a bib full of rice cereal, I grabbed another baby spoon and gave it to him to hold onto while I fed him with my spoon. Well, Zach had absolutely no desire to just hold onto the spoon nicely. There was banging and drumming, lots of banging and drumming: banging the spoon on the highchair, hitting the spoon on the spoon I was trying to feed him with, and then the banging resulted in the spoon being flung to the floor. Of course, he was no longer interested in the dropped spoon, but the spoon I was trying desperately to feed him with. So, once again, I was dodging his quick hands in an attempt to get the rice cereal into his mouth. We got a few bites down. And, yes, he still hated it and the disgusted facial expressions continued throughout the entire meal.

Friday at dinnertime I decided to give Zach sweet potatoes instead of rice cereal. I know this goes against the whole rule of waiting three days before introducing a new food, but I figured since he wasn't really eating the rice cereal anyway, a new food would probably be alright. He was still extremely interested in the spoon, again, so we again gave him his own spoon to play with during the whole feeding process. The first bite of sweet potatoes resulted in the same disgusted face, but when I lifted the spoon for his second bite, Zach lunged forward into the spoon! He couldn't get enough of the sweet potatoes and actually ate the whole entire bowl. I believe he even let out a little whimper when I took the bowl away from the table to clean it out in the sink.

Since last Friday, Zach has evolved into a full-fledged baby food eater. He loves it! Every time I put him in the high chair he begins looking around intently for his bowl of food. I'm still having difficulty getting him to eat plain rice cereal. The last time I tried, he pursed his lips so tightly together that I couldn't even wedge the spoon in. I have since introduced applesauce and he has no problem gobbling that right down when mixed with the rice cereal.
Over the past week we've all had a lot of fun seeing this new side of Zach. The only not-so-fun bi-product of introducing him to solids is the vibrantly colored spit-up and poop that now comes in abundant quantities from our little guy. I don't think I need to provide photos, video, or go into further detail for you to get the idea. :)

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Conflicts

I found the following article on WebMD today:

Moms, Tots Argue 20 Times an Hour
It's Not Just the Temperamental Toddlers Who Clash With Mom, Study Shows

By Miranda Hitti WebMD Medical News
Reviewed by
Louise Chang, MD

March 25, 2008 -- Mothers and their toddlers argue 20-25 times per hour on average, a new study shows.

Sixty moms and their children took part. The moms and kids were studied twice: when the children were 30 months old and again six months later.

First, the moms took their 30-month-old children to the researchers' lab. The researchers videotaped each pair during playtime (with the moms enforcing rules about toys), while the moms read to and talked with their children, and as the kids worked on puzzles that were too hard for their age.

In short, the researchers loaded the lab session with fodder for parent-child conflicts. The kids couldn't get certain toys they wanted, and the puzzle task was designed to be frustrating. All in all, there were plenty of opportunities for meltdowns all around.

When the kids were 36 months old, their moms tape-recorded their interactions with that child just before and during dinner time. The point was to get an idea of how the moms and toddlers interact in their home, not in an unfamiliar lab.

"Mothers and toddlers were arguing on average between 20-25 times an hour at both assessment periods," write Lehigh University's Deborah Laible, PhD, and colleagues.
That average is based on a wide range of hourly quarrels, from a low of four conflicts per hour to a high of 55 arguments per hour. Remember, the moms and kids were only studied during times when conflict was likely; they probably didn't clash like that around the clock.
Those conflicts were more likely to get resolved without major drama if the kids had a good relationship with their mother and weren't especially temperamental, active, or impulsive, according to surveys completed by the moms.

Those factors didn't affect the frequency of the mother-child conflicts. Such conflicts are normal and frequent during the toddler and early preschool years, Laible's team writes.

Their study appears in the March/April 2008 issue of Child Development.

Hmmmmm.....
Now, granted, I don't count every single time Allie and I have a difference in opinion, but if I did, I would honestly go nuts. I'm almost positive I would lose count after only 10 minutes. I am so glad that these wonderful doctors conducted a study so that I now know exactly how many times I disagree with Allie during one single day.

Let's see..........
Allie wakes up at 6:30 a.m. and goes down for a nap at 12:30p.m. That's 6 hours and at 25 conflicts per hour we have a result of 150 conflicts. Now, if we are having a really bad day, like the above article suggests, and have 55 conflicts per hour, that is 330 conflicts in just one morning! Fortunately, if we are having a good day at 4 conflicts per hour we will only have to deal with 24 conflicts throughout the morning.
Allie sleeps for 2 hours (and that is VERY genrous). No conflicts.
Allie wakes up at 2:30 p.m. and goes to bed around 8:30 p.m. That is 6 more hours: the same math from above applies. By the end of a normal day we will have dealt with 300 conflicts, a bad day will see 660 conflicts, and a good day will result in 48 conflicts.

Wow. No wonder why I sometimes (well, actually, to be honest, most all of the time) feel so frazzled. Again, much thanks to the nice doctors who enlightened me with these statistics.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Dinner Time!

My favorite time of day since having kids is dinner time. Actually, I lied. It is probably nap time or bed time. However, this past week dinner time has definitely been my most favorite time of day because Ben has been home EVERY night to eat dinner with us so far this week! He has been attending a training class in St. Cloud and even though the commute is longer, he is still able to be home by 6:00 p.m. every night. This arrangement is a million times better than when he is working extremely long days and nights on the bridge. So, Ben has been catching up on some much needed sleep and playtime with the kids while I have had fun cooking dinner for ALL of us. We've all enjoyed this week as a family and are thankful for this small respite before things get crazy again.



I was seriously craving some Mexican food (especially guacamole) yesterday, so here's what I made for dinner last night (thanks to my mom for the great recipe--it's become a regular favorite around here!) -
avocados+tomatoes+salt+pepper+garlic+onion powder+Pace=
Yummy Guac!!

Other tasty side dishes.
(Ok, ok, I know--so it's not all homemade.)










1 lb ground beef + 1 med. onion, chopped + 1 can cream of mushroom soup + 1 can enchilada sauce + 1/3 cup Milk + 2 Tablespoons chopped green chilies + vegetable oil + 8 corn tortillas + 10 ounces of shredded cheese + Directions (see below)


In electric skillet, brown beef and onion until well done. Drain. Mix soup, milk, enchilada sauce, chilies, and beef in pan. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Heat oil in a separate pan and dip each tortilla in the hot oil for 3 seconds. Drain. Place 1/4 cup cheese on each tortilla, roll up, place in skillet. Cover with sauce and cook for 5 minutes. Top with remaining cheese and cook until melted =

Skillet Enchiladas



Ben and I drank: (Allie had milk)






Here is the final product. We all enjoyed eating our dinner. Allie even ate the guacamole--I can't say the same for Ben :) Zach enjoyed watching us eat!



And after the kids went to bed, Ben and I had this for dessert:
(We ate it all before I was able to get a picture of it put together in our bowls!)