Monday, February 17, 2014

Lovey Weekend

Since Valentine's Day was on a Friday, that meant we got to celebrate allll weekend! I had to work on Valentine's Day but that's ok cuz I spent it baking with the kiddos. So colorful!
Jim had to work all night... But he did have these beauties sent to the house.
I am not really big on flowers because let's face it...they die... These were a very nice surprise though.

My parents got me a really cool gift! They got me a 3 month subscription to Nature Box. Check it out here. Each month I get five different healthy snacks to try. I can't wait til the first package comes!

Saturday we actually celebrated. Jim got me the best presents ever!!
Does he know me or what?! A whole box of Quest bars (my new obsession), a GNC gold card (for future Quest purchases), wine, liquor, my favorite pretzels, a lottery ticket (didn't win), and some M&Ms (gotta have a little chocolate) Seriously the best gift ever!!

I got him a nice card, a bottle of our favorite wine, and four boxes of zebra cakes :)

Jim planned a secret activity before dinner. I had a pretty good idea what it was, and I was right! Pottery painting! I have been wanting to do this for forever! 
It was so fun!! I made a heart plate so I can take pretty foodie pictures. 
We have to pick them up in a week after they bake it or whatever they do... Can't wait to see the finished product :) Jim made a really cute treat container for our pup Sadie.

Then we went to a Thai food resturant called The Silk Elephant. This was my first Thai experience.  I decided to order something "safe" so I just got tofu and veggies.
Only problem is that it had a very oily sauce. ED was super loud and I just couldn't eat it. I took a few bites but couldn't get past all the oil... I felt bad... The owner saw that I didn't like it and was determined to please me. I am glad she was so persistent! She brought me some very fresh veggie and tofu rolls!
I ate them all and they were sooo yummy! It was a little out of my comfort zone but I felt great afterwards.
Jim was even shocked so we captured the first bite moment :) I would definelty go back to that resturant. Best part?!? My dinner was on the house! 

Sunday we just relaxed, watched Netflix, and drank some wine. I would say it was a very successful Valentine weekend!

What did you do to celebrate? Gifts? Dinner? 

Friday, February 14, 2014

Preschool Fun!

I love my job as a nanny! I also love that I get to use my elementary education degree! I have no desire to pursue a teaching job for many reasons...I won't bore you with all that now.  The kiddo and I do lots of fun and sometimes educational activities when he is not at preschool.  I love coming up with new ideas or just stealing some from Pinterest.  Here are some recent activities we have done.

Snacky Snowman

You will need:
  • construction paper
  • glue
  • all the snacks! (marshmallows, cereal, pretzels, colorful candy, chocolate chips, coconut...)

I drew an outline for the snowman.  Then just let him get creative! Marshmellows are great for the snowman, but you could use almost anything.  Cheerios, chocolate chips, M&Ms...Who says it has to be a white snowman!? A snowman made out of Skittles would be pretty cool :)

Ta Da! Mine is the pink one and kiddo's is blue.  He had a lot of fun with it.  And of course we ate the extra snacks afterwards.

Mini Books
You will need:

  • construction paper
  • scissors
  • glue
  • markers
  • old magazines
  • stickers 
This is pretty self explanatory.  We made these little books when the kids had a snow day.  I brought a bunch of old magazines and found some fun stickers.  We each picked a topic for our book and got to work.  We just folded the construction paper to make a mini book and held it together with some yarn.  Staples would work but our stapler was empty. These were really fun and kept everyone busy for about 2 hours!

 Color Bingo
You will need:
  • blank bingo sheet
  • colorful candy (M&Ms, skittles...)

This might be kiddos new favorite game.  You can easily make your own bingo sheet or print one from here.  Just fill in the spaces with whatever colors of candy you use.  We had a bag of Valentine's Day M&Ms so we got to add pink and white!  Fruit Loops would be good makers too.  Anything that gives you different color options.  

We didn't play this like traditional bingo.  Kiddo had to fill up the whole board before he won!  We played two different ways.  First, I called out a color and he had to put a candy on every space with that color.  Then, he picked a random candy and then had to find that color on the board.  It is very helpful if you make sure you have the right number and color of candies so when the board is filled, the candies are gone.  After playing a few rounds the prize is all the candy :)

Colorful Foam
You will need:
  • shaving cream
  • food coloring
  • corn starch
  • bowl

I have mentioned before how much kiddo loves science.  He loves mixing things together and making "potions".  This mixture doesn't do anything too crazy or scientific, but it is fun to play with and makes a nice big mess!

Mix together equal parts corn starch and shaving cream.  Get those hands messy! 
It makes a pretty cool substance.  Kind of like really soft clay. We played with this for a while before adding some color.

He loves mixing colors and seeing it change.  Of course he wanted to add all the colors.

He called this "poop" color.  Once we added all the food coloring, the mixture got pretty watery so we couldn't play with it anymore.  It was fun getting a little messy.  The whole house smelled like shaving cream for hours!

So, that's what we have been up to lately.  I don't know about you, but I am ready for Spring!! I cannot wait to get back to the park and pool :)

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Pudding Oatmeal

I have been on a major oatmeal kick lately.  It's super healthy and a pretty quick meal.  BUT, a big old bowl of oatmeal is very boring.  Some people think of oatmeal as a yucky bowl of mush! Trust me, this oatmeal is anything but yucky! (Although it is still kinda mushy...) I have been playing around with different ways to jazz it up a bit.  My favorite so far is cheesecake oatmeal!

Old fashioned oats and sugar free fat free pudding mix is all you need!! I chose cheesecake this time! You can absolutely use any flavor of pudding here.  You can use vanilla, chocolate, white chocolate, banana cream (those are all the sugar free fat free flavors).  Of course you can also use regular pudding mix and have more options, but then you have a lot more sugar being added.

This is so quick and simple to make.  Just take 1/2 cup oats and about 2 T of the pudding mix.  You can also add some sweetener ( I add 3 splenda ) and a dash of salt.  Then add 2 cups of water.  The oatmeal container directions will say to only add 1 cup of water. We are going to let our oats sit for a while so they will absorb the extra water and expand.  This is going to give you an extra big bowl of yummy oatmeal!  Also, the pudding mix will need the extra water.  Feel free to substitute any type of milk instead of water. 

I recommend using a whisk to mix it up good because the pudding mix will clump together.  A spoon will work, just make sure you get all the clumps out.  You will also want to use a decent size bowl because your oatmeal will expand in the microwave.  Depending on the flavor of pudding you use, you could add some cinnamon, vanilla, cocoa powder, etc to the mix. Get creative! I kept it simple on this batch.

Microwave for 2 minutes.  Take it out and stir it up good.  Then microwave another 30-45 second.  Keep an eye on it!  At about 2 1/2 minutes it will start to boil and could spill over.  (I learned this the hard way) It is also nice to have a bigger bowl so you can go crazy with toppings!  

It already looks thicker.  Let it sit for about 5 minutes uncovered and then put it in the fridge.  I usually let mine sit overnight, but it really only needs a couple hours to let the pudding set.  When it is ready you can microwave it for a bit or just eat it cold.  I actually prefer it cold because of the pudding. Almost like a bread pudding texture.  Either way it is super yummy! 

This is the really fun part!! Toppings! You can get so creative here. I kept this one simple with just some sliced bananas and some sugar free syrup.

You can also do vanilla pudding mix with bananas, cinnamon, peanut butter, and whipped cream on top :)

Some other great topping could be strawberries, chocolate sauce, any nut butter, jam, dried fruit, apples, blueberries, nuts, chocolate chips, etc.  Play around with different puddings and toppings!

Pudding Oatmeal

  • 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 2 T sugar free fat free pudding mix (any flavor)
  • 2 cups water
  • sweetener to taste
  • dash of salt
Simply mix all ingredients together in a bowl.  Microwave 2 minutes.  Stir.  Microwave another 30-45 seconds.  Let sit for 5 minutes.  Refrigerate overnight or for at least 2 hours.  Enjoy warmed up or straight out of the fridge!   

What is your favorite oatmeal flavor?? 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Magic Milk

Another snow day!! Which means another day kiddo doesn't have school!! Which means more creative indoor activities!! 

This boy loves science! Almost everyday we just take a few ingredients from the cupboard and fridge and mix up "potions". Sometimes we bake, microwave, or freeze them. He loves doing it! 

Today I thought we would do a little bit more structured experiment. We call it "Magic Milk". Here is everything you will need.

Milk (we used three different kinds but you really only need one and you can use any kind) dish soap, food coloring, Qtips, bowls (one for each kind of milk).
Oh, and of course you need at least one cute kiddo :)

Start by pouring the milk into the little dishes. If using more than one try to get kinds with different fat content (skim, 2%, half and half)
We made observations about the different kinds. Which ones are thicker and whiter. 

Then put a drop of food coloring in the middle of the milk. It just kinda sits there...
Here comes the fun part!! Dip the Qtip in the soap and poke the food coloring.
It's like the food coloring runs away from the soap! You will notice how much or little the color spreads in the different milks. 
It doesn't spread as far or as fast in the milk with more fat. You can add more food coloring and mix colors.
What color will red and blue make??Another lesson learned! 
You can get real educational with it all and give the full explanation of why this craziness happens. Skip over this next part if you don't really care. 


Milk is mostly water but it also contains vitamins, minerals, proteins, and tiny droplets of fat suspended in solution. Fats and proteins are sensitive to changes in the surrounding solution (the milk).

The secret of the bursting colors is the chemistry of that tiny drop of soap. Dish soap, because of its bipolar characteristics (nonpolar on one end and polar on the other), weakens the chemical bonds that hold the proteins and fats in solution. The soap's polar, or hydrophilic (water-loving), end dissolves in water, and itshydrophobic (water-fearing) end attaches to a fat globule in the milk. This is when the fun begins.

The molecules of fat bend, roll, twist, and contort in all directions as the soap molecules race around to join up with the fat molecules. During all of this fat molecule gymnastics, the food coloring molecules are bumped and shoved everywhere, providing an easy way to observe all the invisible activity. As the soap becomes evenly mixed with the milk, the action slows down and eventually stops. 

Try adding another drop of soap to see if there's any more movement. If so, you discovered there are still more fat molecules that haven't found a partner at the big color dance. Add another drop of soap to start the process again.

So there you have it!! Interesting stuff! Not gonna lie... We kinda skipped the whole explanation part... We just had fun playing around with it and mixing colors :) 

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Discouraged but Determined

So, back to all the reproductive specialist fun... I saw the doctor 2 weeks ago for a weigh in to find out if I had gained enough to move forward with treatment.  I had gained a bit and only had 5 pounds to go.  I increased my calories a decent amount, concentrating on adding more fat.  Feeling pretty positive and confident that I had gained some, I went for a weigh in yesterday.  My weight was the same! How is that even possible with how much I have been eating?? To say I felt discouraged would be an understatement.  BUT, today I am feeling a little better about it all.  I am still extremely determined to gain the weight, be at a healthy BMI, and try the next treatment option.  

Need to constantly be reminded of this!!!
I have continued to increase how much I am eating.  I have been using the MyFitnessPal phone app to make sure I am eating more.  I hate to count calories, but if I just "listened to my body" and ate whatever I felt like, I am sure I would not eat enough.  Sometimes when I look back on a day and see just how many calories I have eaten, it freaks me out! Actually, I should say it freaks ED out! I am trying my best to ignore him...I am slowly accepting the fact that for whatever reason, I just have to eat a lot more than most people to put on weight.  I really should just embrace and enjoy it! Many people would LOVE to be able to eat so much and not gain weight.

I will say I have been enjoying some parts of it...

Got these for Christmas and finally letting myself enjoy them.  So Good!

I know, it is not even close to Easter yet...Blame Target for putting these on the shelves super early!!

I don't care who you are, or how old you are...Pop Tarts are delicious!!

Even kittens like Confetti Cupcake Pop Tarts! The little thief!

Even with all the fun food it is still extremely hard physically and emotionally...

Another problem is that I hate even knowing my weight...For a long time I wasn't weighing myself at all and that was great!! Anyone who struggles with an eating disorder knows how evil that number on the scale can be.  

I am a FIRM believer in this!! BUT, when my doctor tells me I need to be a certain weight, I kinda need to come face to face with the dreaded scale.  I just keep telling myself that I am doing this to be healthy and become a mommy!!

Hopefully two weeks from now I will have a happier post titled "Goal Weight Achieved!!" Or maybe something a little more catchy... I will work on it :)

Since I am more motivated now to try new and yummy things...
What is a super tasty food I should try???