Thursday, April 21, 2011

Wanna see the cutest little bunny everrrr?? look below..

I have been thinking all day about this one certain thing.

Im not going to tell you what it is, but I will say it is a dream/goal/want of mine.

I am going to start on it real soon.

In the mean time, here are some adorable pictures I took of Sugar Bear today. Isnt she just the cutest little Easter bunny?!?

Giving props:))

So, I just read a post on someone elses page (The Rockin' Mamma Blog,) , and it made me want to write about what is was like being a single Mom, and what its like having a husband, or 2 parent household.

Two totally different worlds! I will just say right off the bat, it is WAY easier, better, whatever word you want to use, having a husband there to help raise a child.

I was a single parent to J-bird for 8 years.

I met Joe when J-bird was only 1 1/2 years old, but we were not exclusive, committed, and were on-and-off for a looong time.

Those years were very hard on me and Im sure hard on Jalen also.

I was trying to make a life for the 2 of us, so I was in nursing school, which was one of the hardest things Ive ever done.

Not to mention trying to raise a child, pay the bills, and just plain keep it together. Luckily, I can say I made it through, and I am very proud of that accomplishment.

I know in my heart everything happens for a reason, and I now truely believe that Joe and I were not meant to be at the time we met.

Back then I thought we were, but if we hadnt broken up, I probably would have never gained my independence, and went to nursing school.

That being said, it was a very stressful time for me. I was not the best parent in the world. I yelled alot, said things I now regret, and was not the patient Mom that Jalen deserved.

At the time, all I wanted was for Joe to come rescue me.

I wanted him to love me and Jalen. I wanted him to be Jalen's Dad.

I did not want to be the Mom and the Dad, but I had to.

It was hard. Very hard.

Now that we are finally married, he adopted J-bird, we adopted little Sugar bear, and have our little family in order, things are looking up.

Joe is there for me when I need him. He is a very hands on father.

When he sees that I am getting impatient or irritable, he will take over or step in.

When I have had a fussy baby all day (doesnt happen real often), the laundry needs done, and I have no dinner plans, he comes home with a smile and immediately relieves me.

He will take the baby, start helping Jalen with his homework, and will let me do whatever I want.

That may be starting dinner, taking a bath, or retreating to my room for a moment of silence.

He is the best! I really mean that.

So, THANK YOU JOE for just being you.

THANK YOU for being a good husband and father.

THANK YOU for loving Jalen and Hallie Rose the way you do.

Our life is much more enriched with you in it.

I love you.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Gluten-free homemade protein bars

Joe has been buying these vegan protein/energy/on-the-go bars.

After looking at the label, we noticed that they are filled with sugar, and don't seem to be all that good for you.

So, I decided to try and make my own.

Now, they are not completely sugar free, but they do not have corn syrup or white sugar. So, in my book, they are at least "healthier", which is a better option.

Even J-bird liked them, and he swears he doesn't like oats, raisins, or dried cranberries. If he only knew what was in them:)

I searched the Internet for the recipe that I thought sounded the best and looked at pictures to see which ones looked like what I wanted. This is what I came up with..

2 cups certified gluten-free rolled oats
1 cup nuts, crushed (I used almonds and cashews)
3/4 cup seeds (I used sunflower and hemp seeds) some others are flax seed, pumpkin or sesame
1/4 cup coconut (optional)
1 scoop protein powder (optional)
1 scoop superfood powder (optional)

2/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup honey (or 1/4 cup honey, plus 1/4 cup raw agave)
4 T butter (I only used 2)
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chopped dried fruit (I did cranberries and blueberries) and I did NOT chop them


Pre-heat oven to 400.

Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil.

Mix all dry ingredients together, and place on baking sheet. Place in oven and toast for approx 10 min, or until seeds are toasted. Stir often to prevent burning.

While dry ingredients are toasting, line a 9x13 in rimmed pan with wax paper and spray with cooking oil.

Next, place a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add in brown sugar, butter, honey, cinnamon, and salt. Bring the mixture to a strong boil, and let boil for 2 minutes. Stirring constantly.

Turn off heat and add in vanilla.

Place toasted dry ingredients in a large bowl, adding the dried fruit.

Pour liquid mixture over dry ingredients and stir until well combined.

Using a wooden spoon or spatula (I used a plastic spatula that was damp and my damp hands), place the mixture into the 9x13 pan which is lined with wax paper. Press down firmly, as to flatten the mixture. Set aside and let cool for 1-2 hours.

After mixture has cooled, remove wax paper, and cut as desired.  ENJOY!!

This recipe can be modified in so many different ways.

The original recipe did not call for the coconut, protein powder, or superfood powder. I add that in myself. You just need to make sure the amount of  dry ingredients is about the same each time, so that there is enough of the liquid to cover it all. I always use organic ingredients also, but that is up to you!!

Yummy breakfast, (or snack) recipe...

Ok, so its taken me all week to finally update my last post..

First off, the homemade protein bars came out delicious!!! They were so easy, and yummy! Every single one got eaten. I plan on making more soon, and I will share the recipe!

But, first I want to give the recipe that was pictured in my last post.

It is a bowl of muesli, Organic Greek Yogurt, banana, and blueberries.

Such a healthy, yet scrumptious snack. The only thing I need to tell you how to make is the muesli..

This recipe is a raw food, and very healthy..

There are many different variations, but I will just give you the one we make.

My husband is actually the one who found the recipe, and he makes the batch each time. It produces a pretty big bowl of it and usually last us about a week. We have it for breakfast, with mixed fresh organic berries on top! mmmm....

7 medium organic apples

1 cup organic rolled oats

1/4 cup organic raisins and/or dried cranberries (I like both)

1/4 cup crushed organic almonds and/or walnuts (I like both)

1/2 teaspoon organic cinnamon

Cut the apples into wedges and remove core.

Juice the apple wedges in a juicer, and reserve 2 1/4 cups of the juice and 1/2 cup of the pulp.

In a medium size bowl, combine the apple juice, pulp, oats, raisins, nuts, and cinnamon. Mix well. Cover bowl and place in refrigerator overnight.

Thats it! Pretty easy.

I like to add Organic Greek Yogurt, honey or vanilla flavored to mine. Along with bananas, blueberries, raspberries, or blackberries.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Loved this post, wanted to share..

Friday, April 1, 2011

Whats to come...

Im going to make homemade gluten-free protein bars this weekend.

I will let you know how they turn out.

I have been avoiding gluten for a few weeks now, and it feels great! I dont feel bloated or overly full.

We buy GF bread, bagels, and pasta, crackers, and more..So far, so good!

I also had the most delicious treat last night. See picture below...I will post recipe soon. It was easy, healthy,  and oh, so good.

New nap spot

So, little Hallie Rosebud is a dare devil..

The other day I was walking upstairs with a huge stack of clean towels. She was supposed to be asleep on my bed, the monitor was on. I hadn't heard a peep.

As I got to the top of the stairs, I looked into my room, and she was literally 2 seconds from face planting on the floor.

I dropped the towels, and ran to catch her. It kind of took my breath away. It was that close.

She had one hand reaching for the ground, and one hand still on the bed. Luckily, I came at the exact second that I did, otherwise, we would have had one hurt, scared little girl.

Our bed is of course on a frame, so its about 2-3 feet off the floor. Not good.

She just doesn't quite understand that she cannot lunge off the bed, without consequences.

She tries it all the time, but we are always there to stop her. Im hoping she will learn sooner than later, that she cannot do that.

My niece, Scarlet, is 3 months older than Hallie, and she knows not to do that. So, Im confident it will come soon..

I told Joe that from now on, we have to put her in the pack n play while napping, unless we are right there.

I tried that, and umm yeah, didnt go so well.

She woke up immediately and wasnt having anything to do with it.

I took her out, and rocked her back to sleep.

As I rocked her, I had an idea...take the mattress out of her crib that she has never slept in, and put it on the floor in our room.

That way it is close to the ground, and she can nap safely, while I am not able to be right there.

Some of you may ask "why not just put her in her crib to sleep"? Well, because that is just not how we do things around here.

I grabbed the mattress, and put it up against a wall in our room. I then rolled up a few blankets to fill in any holes between the mattress and our dresser. I then put 2 king size pillows next to the mattress, so that if she were to roll off, it would be a cushy roll. It worked out great!

I had to lay down with her for a few minutes, and she was asleep. I turned the monitor on, and went to take a nice, relaxing bath.

She didnt wake up..until I came back in the room, and turned the breast pump on (man, those things are loud)..

I picked her up and put her in our bed, where she is most comfortable, and belongs.

She is fast asleep, as I type and pump.

Joe and Jbird went to pick up a motorcycle Joe bought.

He is going to start racing again. Flat dirt track. Im excited!

He is getting to do something he absolutely loves, and we as a family will get to go watch him win!!

Oh, and the hubby took his CPAT test, which is a physical endurance test for Firefighting, he passed! Good job!!