Thursday, March 25, 2010

So there was this crazy news article the other day about a woman that WANTS to weigh 1,000 pounds. Yep, you read that right. While the rest of us are struggling to lose some weight, this chic is eating 12,000 calories a day trying to gain even more weight. I think she is crazy but who am I to judge. is the funny part, Boyfriend and I were talking about it and he says to me..."We wouldn't be together if you weighed a thousand pounds." He he. I know what he was saying but it just came out ALL wrong. BUT this just gives me fuel to harass him. (I am a horrible person!) So I have to ask him what my weight limit is...he has no answer...just a THAT is NOT what I meant. We often have these crazy conversations that no one ever gets to hear. There was one where somehow I managed to tell him that he smells like farts. I am not sure how that happened but he has been harassing me about it for ages. So now I have something to harass him about now. LOVE IT!!

And just for Sister....we had chili for dinner last night. LOL.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Sorry I have been slacking on posting lately. Olivia has been very needy which means I have little to no time to blog. Or do anything else. Today we are going to talk cupcakes. For some odd reason I have been starving for about two weeks. Yes I eat. Tons, lately. I eat and then a little bit later I am belly rumbling hungry. No idea why. I just go through phases like this. Well, Zach and I got tired of the humdrum of school and since we don't take teacher in service days or days off like MLK day or Predsident's day, we take random holidays and "home ec" days. Home ec days are where Zach learns something related to the home. He will 14 in May and has Asperger's Syndrome. For those of you that don't know, it is a high functioning form of autism. So we started home living skills a few years ago. If he is to have a chance at living on his own someday (hopefully) he will need extra time to learn home tasks. Yesterday I had him bake the most delicious cupcakes! I found this recipe for Sister when she had to make some diabetic treats to take in for a potluck at work. She said they were yummy so I thought...."hey self, you are trying to lose weight, you know you will probably have diabetes when you get older (thanks genetics and gestational diabetes I am higher risk) so why not start to incorporate some of that stuff into our diet NOW? It can't really hurt to be a little healthier, right?" I try not to answer myself when I have these sorts of questions. And just to make myself feel better...I am calling these "low sugar cupcakes". I forgot to buy frosting so we have been eating them plain. Still super yummy!

6 tablespoons reduced-fat margarine
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 18 muffin cups with paper baking cups. Melt margarine in a large saucepan over low heat. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the sugar. In a separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt; add dry mixture alternately with the buttermilk and vanilla to the saucepan containing the margarine and sugar. Stir the batter with a whisk until it is well blended. Fill each muffin cup 2/3 full. Bake 18 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove the cupcakes from the pan and allow them to cool completely on a wire rack. Store, covered, at room temperature.

Yield: 18 cupcakes
Serving size: 1 cupcake
Nutrition Facts

Per Serving:
Calories: 97
Carbohydrate: 18 g
Protein: 2 g
Fat: 2 g
Saturated fat: <1 g
Sodium: 146 mg
Fiber: <1 g

Exchanges per serving: 1 starch
Carbohydrate choices: 1

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Princess and the Frog--$10 off coupon

The Princess and the Frog was released today. There is a $10 off coupon for the Blu-Ray combo pack.
I have heard rumors that Target will take it for the DVD too. Target has a Princess Tiana purse free with purchase. CVS has 3 extra care bucks with purchase. And Best Buy has a book free with purchase. We will be going to Best Buy to get it. They were having a blood drive over the weekend and it has been a while since I donated so we donated. They gave us $5 Best Buy (each!!) for donating. Awesome! We usually donate at the center and they don't give freebies for donating there. So I was all sorts of happy to have ten free bucks. So, we will buy the Blu-Ray/DVD combo pack for $26.99 minus $10 coupon minus $10 in GCs, the final cost will only be $6.99!!! I can't wait to get this movie. I wanted to see it in the theater but the guys didn't want to go. Now with a baby, it will be a while before I get to go to the movies again.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Walmart Irritates Me

Walmart these days is a necessary evil. They are the cheapest place around for the few groceries that we buy. Our Walmart has been eliminating products and/or brands. Of course the only reason I know this is that they are eliminating half the stuff I buy! For instance, Tony Sacherie's (spelling???) dirty rice. They are the best brand around and they no longer carry it!!! They carry the brand but only for a few things. Now I have to use their brand when they have it or pay almost double for the other brand. I won't buy the other brand, it is just gross. Anyway, my point to this post. We were shopping one day a few weeks ago and were buying a pepperoni stick. Homemade pizza is the best! Anyway, we were in the aisle and Robbie was getting the pepperoni and some parmesan cheese that we needed. Me? Well, I space sometimes and generally live in my own little world. So I was of course not paying attention to him, I was looking at the Mexican food stuff. They have cumin in a bag for like 84 cents. The week before we bought some in the seasoning aisle (where cumin should be BTW) for around $4!!! I HATE paying more than I have to. I hate even more finding something I just bought for less. It sucks and I always feel a little ripped off. Well, as I am complaining to boyfriend about over paying for the cumin the week before I notice they have these giant jars of bouillon granules. Now I know they are bad for you but you do need them for some things. But these giant containers are only $5! The little Wylers jar is over 2 bucks! So the lesson I learned was not to trust Walmart and to look in the odd places for cheaper stuff! I am suspicious now so I look at the Mexican and Oriental food aisle much more closely these days. Ya just never know what you are going to find.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

I have been thinking a lot lately about another trip to Disney. It is killing me that we aren't going this year. It just seems so strange. So, last night I sat down to work on the budget for our next trip. The plan was to stay at Coronado Springs Resort and have the Deluxe Dining Plan. Sound great right? Nope. Olivia will be around 18 months old. Babies that young don't want to sit in restaurants for around an hour while we eat. So, due to her age, I started playing with other options. I think we have decided that we will stay at Pop Century and have the Quick Service Dining Plan. I love the dining plans. I love having everything paid for before I get there and not having to worry about paying the bill at the end of a meal. Now, the quick service is just for the counter service places but it will be nice not having to pay. And not having Boyfriend constantly worrying about money. I waaaaay over budget what I think we will need for food so that I don't have to worry about it. Someone needs to book a Disney trip though me so I have one to plan and I can stop driving my boyfriend crazy with talk of a vacation that isn't happening for over a year!!!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Who knew babies had opinions?

You would think that since humans haven't changed in a few thousand years that raising kids wouldn't have changed all that much either. Apparently while my son was racing his way to the teen years, all sorts of crazy things have happened. When we had to start shopping for gear for Olivia I was just amazed at all the stuff there is for parents these days. I know I didn't have even half of all this stuff for Zach and he is only 13 years old. I am not sure if it is to try to make a parents life easier or just to make you feel like you need it. Though Olivia just loves being in her stroller when we are out, sometimes it is just very inconvenient to take the stroller out. Sometimes we just don't feel like carrying around the carrier carseat. I didn't want one of those to begin with. Rob wanted it so we got one. Works great, got a Graco Snugride. I really wish they would have had the Mickey design out sooner! So, when you don't want to grab the stroller or carry the car seat, what do you do? You use a baby carrier of course! Baby wearing is nothing new. Women have been doing this for centuries. So we bought me a cute Jelly Bean Sling. I liked it. Turns out, the baby has to like it too. Olivia hates that thing. Every time we try to put her in it she starts crying. She already has strong opinions. Gonna be just like her mother! My only complaint about it was that, by their directions, I needed a small. Reality, I needed a large and probably would have been more comfortable with an extra large. I am a small person and it was a tight fit. The sling completely closed her in and covered her up. Which was good when she was really small, still liked being wrapped up in blankets and needed to be shielded from germs. She is 3 months old now and wants to look around. She can't do that laying down in the sling. I am not sure she can really see the lights in the sling. We did go out last weekend and bought a Jeep brand carrier. It has her upright on my chest. The weight feels more evenly distributed too. One suggestion, Don't decide to walk a mile at the track while carrying a three month old in a carrier. After a while the 12 pound baby gets really really heavy!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Training for a 5K

Did you know Disney World has endurance events? You can run a marathon through the parks. They charge you an arm and a leg (or was it your first born?) to have the privilege of running for 26 miles. There are many different events throughout the year. All of them sound exhausting! They have one in Animal Kingdom in June every year that sounds kind of fun. It is a 5K race with a scavenger hunt at the end. Sound fun right? So Z, 13 years old, and Boyfriend have decided to start training to do the Expedition Everest Challenge in June of 2011. Z is a total couch potato. He doesn't go outside and play. Never really has. It is all part of the Autism. He is, on the other hand, really really good at video games. LOL But Z did really good. They jogged, walked, and exercised their way through a mile at the track. He didn't complain once! I was so proud. I am really hoping that he sticks with this and runs the 5K. Two reasons. 1) I think it is good exercise for him. 2) I will get an extra trip to Disney!!! Oh, and just because we started doing is going to rain for the rest of the week! Though it will still be 70 degrees so I will take it. Good thing we own a treadmill. He can still run while it is raining.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

My Grandfather Doesn't Exist

I have recently started working on a family tree. It has been fun, interesting and frustrating all at the same time. Luckily for me, an uncle on my father's side has been working on their side of my family for a few years. Even more luck for me, Sister had a copy of all his work and sent me a copy too! I have traced on branch of our family all the way back to 1485. I just keep following the bloodlines. I think one day I would like to add on all the miscellaneous cousins and their lines too. Just to see how many I can get. There is a website called Geni that will let you build your family tree for free. I am going to find a way to make this a part of our homeschool. I think Z could really benefit from the researching and knowing where his ancestors came from. I have learned that my grandfather apparently never existed! I have a copy of his birth certificate and a copy of their marriage license. They were my grandmothers hard copies. But when searching online I cannot find him anywhere. I can't find his birth, their marriage record, his death, social security, nothing. I have only initials for his parents so that isn't helping any either. I keep hoping that someone else will come across his name in their family and I will find more information that way. How do find someone when the government says they didn't exist?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A Stroller for every occasion!

So when we found out I was pregnant last year, it was a shock to say the least. Boyfriend really really wanted to buy things. But I am a high risk for miscarriage so I made him put it off. He, being the good first time dad that he is, does all the research about everything baby related. I have a 13 year old and somewhere around a hundred nieces and nephews. I have been there, done that. So anyway, he starts researching and reading all about everything. He got really interested in strollers. We are Disney fanatics. I love Disney World and someday I might vacation somewhere else. I have been thinking, maybe Disney Land? LOL So when looking at strollers I told him to keep in mind our vacations. It needs to be easy to lift and load onto a bus packed like a sardine. (ever ridden a bus on Disney property? LOL) So he finds the Peg Perego Pliko P3. This baby is SWEET! We went to look at it. It turns out only one place in town sells it. A baby boutique. $$$$$-yeah. Here is a link to Albee Baby to see one: I told him for that kind of money she had better use it until she didn't need one anymore. So after looking at this stroller and freaking out over the price, we headed to Disney World. Yep, I did it pregnant. Still had a ton of fun and now I get to say I need to go back to do what I missed! (justify vacations too, not just junk food. hehe) I am not what you would call a shy person. I strike up conversations with random strangers. So Disney World is the PERFECT place to scope out strollers. Every time I saw one that we both liked, I would walk up to the person and start asking questions about their stroller. I did explain I was pregnant and not just crazy. Lots of strollers got good reviews. But those with the Peg Perego LOVED their stroller. They gush. I kid you not. I now gush about my stroller too! It weighs a whole 16 pounds. In the land of strollers, that is light. It is a full size stroller but folds up like an umbrella stroller so it is very compact. I can push this thing with one hand the control is that good. The snack tray comes off for when your child gets too big for it. The seat reclines and the canopy on top is HUGE, a big plus here in Florida. As with everything, there are some down sides. The basket on the bottom is not very large and can only be accessed from the sides. But, there are loops on the handles to "hang" your diaper bag. We bought some carbiner clips to put on our diaper bag. Works great! And since that is what it is meant for, the stroller doesn't tip over when we put it on. The cup holder is pretty useless. It is so small that only a soda/water bottle (or baby bottle) will fit in it. Other than those two things, this stroller is fantastic. I am glad that he chose it and wouldn't have any other stroller. Had we known she was girl we probably would have chosen a more girly color. Ours is grey. But I am going to glam it up before our next Disney trip. Now, how should I decorate it?

Monday, March 1, 2010

You can make chocolate syrup!?!?

I have been on quest to eliminate HFCS from our diet. Then I started the quest to just be able to pronounce all the ingredients in the food I eat. I cheat sometimes, that whole moderation thing. I have some Girl Scout cookies we have been eating. I call it supporting the Girl Scouts. Justification. LOL Anyway, I was playing around looking for a recipe for something or other when I came across a recipe for chocolate syrup. The reviews say it tastes like Hershey's. Did you know Hershey's has HFCS in it? WHY!!!! Why is that stuff in EVERYTHING? It would be OK if it was only in some stuff but it seems to be in just about everything these days. That is not moderation to me. So my goal is to make some chocolate syrup sometime this week. I have changed the recipe a little based on the reviews and what people agreed worked and didn't work.
Chocolate Syrup
1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 cup cocoa powder
dash of salt
1 tsp vanilla extract

1. In a small bowl combine sugar and cocoa powder.
2. combine water, sugar/cocoa powder mix, and salt in pan over low heat. Whisk constantly until syrup starts to thicken and begins to simmer.
3. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla.
Use warm or store in covered in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Half of the sugar can be substituted with sugar substitute without affecting the flavor too much.