February 25, 2011

Snow Day

This is how our day started out. Maggie's getting better and better at sitting up in her Bumbo. Today she got to play with her new teething toy for the first time. As you can see, she loves it.

Because of the snow, we all slept in till about 10:30. Because of that, the snow was almost all gone. We decided we wanted to go for a walk because it didn't look too bad outside and it sounded like fun. It took a while to get everyone showered, dressed, fed and packed. By the time we were walking out the door it was snowing again. Snowing hard. We went anyway and when we got home, this is what we found. More beautiful snow to play in.

It was Max's first time to play in the snow and Maggie's first time to see snow. We had a lot of fun. Max kept yelling 'No, No!' to us when we threw snowballs at him. It was sooo funny!!! Good times!

February 24, 2011

My Fear of Cooking Something New

I have a fear of trying new things in cooking. All growing up, my sisters or Mom cooked the meals. I was great at baking. That's easy. If I wanted something sweet, I'd have to make it. Besides that, I find baking FUN! Savory dishes... not so much. They're intimidating for me.

When I got married I used my handsome husband as an excuse for not trying some recipes. Recipes with onions or mushrooms in them. My goodness! It's so difficult to find a recipe without onions. He helped me kick that bad habit. It was only an excuse, so he said he'd eat it if I made it. That was about 7 years ago. I'm not saying I haven't tried it here and there, but I really haven't pursued getting over this fear till now.

The drive really started for me in January. Wes bought me my second slow cooker. I have potpourri going in one pretty frequently, and in the other I usually try a casserole for dinner. It takes so little time and tastes SO GOOD!

The next step, I decided was to make something that I've been putting off. Like something with mushrooms. I picked this because it's something I love. I would go to Noodles & Co. everyday for their stroganoff if I could, but that would be ridiculous (and yummy! LOL!!!)

On Monday I picked up some mushrooms so that I would no longer have an excuse. No more saying I don't have the ingredients, or giving them away because I've chickened out. Today was the day. After playing in the snow with my sweet little family and putting the babies down for a nap, I did it... without a recipe. Like always it seems, I look and look and I'm unable to find a recipe that I really like. So I use parts of some that I've found and like the most.

Creamy Mushroom Stroganoff
1/2 lb - pasta
8 oz - sliced mushrooms
1 1/2 cup - heavy cream
1/2 cup - 2% milk
3/4 cup - parmesan cheese

Season with:
ground black pepper
onion powder
garlic salt

1)  Cook pasta and drain.
2)  Brown mushrooms in a large pan in butter and
olive oil (don't crowd the mushrooms).
3)  Add remaining ingredients and simmer for 10 minutes.
4)  You can then either mix the pasta together or top
each plate of pasta individually. Both are going to be yummy!

Now, on with my goal of beating this fear. I've printed out some recipes that I've decided to try. I'll probably end up changing them a bit, because that's what I do. That's OK though. Here are a few of them...
I'm making the Rosemary New Potatoes tomorrow along with a the Soda Roast. I've actually made a soda roast before, so the potatoes are my 'something new'. I'm super excited to see how this goes. So far, so good.

February 23, 2011

Tater Tot Casserole - I had a craving!

I had a craving for Tater Tot Casserole the other day, so I went on the search for a recipe. I haven't had this in so long. Maybe the cold weather and the fact that my little boy loves tater tots brought this on. Either way, I wasn't having any luck finding the right recipe. So I made up my own. How hard can it be?! I found out that it's not hard at all. However, because I made it correctly this time, doesn't mean I'll make it the same next time, unless I document how I did it. Here I go...

1 lb - ground beef (seasoned with onion powder, garlic salt & ground black pepper)
1 - 10 oz can - cream of celery
1 - 10 oz can - cream of chicken
1 - 15 oz can - corn
10 oz - 2% milk
1 1/2 tsp. - red pepper flakes
2 cups - cheddar cheese divided
1 - 32 oz bag - tater tots (or enough to cover)

Brown ground beef, then drain and season. Add soups, milk, corn and pepper flakes. In a greased 3 qt baking pan, spread mixture and top with 1 cup of the cheddar cheese. Then top with tater tots. Bake at 350 for 45 to 60 min till tater tots are browned. Top with remaining cheese and cook till cheese melts.

I love this kind of comfort food! It was easy to make on a busy day. I love being able to feed my family yummy comfort food, even when I'm in a hurry. ;0)

February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

I love Valentine's Day because it's a day set aside to let people know how much you love them. Your kids, sisters, brothers, parents and friends. So Happy Valentines Day to all of those lucky people that I love. I hope you have a wonderful day and eat lots of chocolate.

To my dear sweet Wesley - I don't know how I got so lucky. Thank you for giving in and marrying me. I guess all that stocking paid off. LOL!!!

February 13, 2011

Great Day with Family

My Saturday started early. Usually we try to sleep in if at all possible, but we were on a mission to be productive. We headed out to the church to start filling the font for the baptism that we were going to later in the day, then left for a little drive to Hillsboro. I was starving and had forgotten to eat because I was concentrating on getting everyone dressed and out the door. I really must work on that. On our way out, Wes told me there was a Wendy's, so I got my hopes up for some yummy chili. My hopes were dashed when we found no Wendy's. But, before I had a chance to shed a tear, I saw Noodles & Co. Oh how I LOVE Noodles & Co. Needless to say, I was super happy. Seconds after I was served, it seemed I had inhaled the delicious food. I thought to myself, 'This day is pretty freakin sweet!'.

We then went to the baptism of a little sweetheart we know. I'm so happy for her. What a big deal. She decided that she was ready to be baptized. That's huge! I sure love that girl! When it was time to go I thought, 'What a great day!'.

We headed home to pick up Wes's tools so he could help my sister and brother in law with some stuff around the house. I didn't see him when we got to their house because I was busy chasing a toddler around. He finished what he was doing and we just hung out in their living room chatting on and on. I thought to myself, 'I'm one lucky girl!'.

However, on my way home, I got the feeling I should take another route home, but because it wasn't rush hour, I thought, 'nah, it'll be fine.' So I headed in the usual direction. I almost plowed into two little sedans. If you haven't seen what I drive, let me tell you. It's quite huge. I drive a Excursion with an 8in lift. I would have seriously injured someone. I was so shaken up. I kept trying to remember if I was driving crazy or something. Nope, the car in front of me didn't give themselves enough time to stop. They swerved and then I swerved. I really should have listened to that feeling. Someone could have gotten hurt. I'm so happy it was a miss!!!

We ended our day with our family watching a movie, eating junk food and running around playing in the living room. I'm about to fall sleep as I type and I'm thinking... I have had such a wonderful day!!!


- - - - - - - - - -

I have to add a little note about the 'almost accident'. It started to rain just before I left my sisters house, that and the sun had gone down. So the recipe for disaster starts on a wonderful normal Oregon night. Dark, rainy and slippery. Mix that with a bunch of people that act like they've never driven in Oregon and you've got my situation. I had plenty of room and time to stop, until the person that had been in front of me one block back decided at the last minute to swerve right back in front of me at the last second. I had to swerve my beast into the oncoming lane in order to miss the two cars in front of me. Thankfully the oncoming lane was clear at the time. Even though I didn't listen to the prompting, Heavenly Father took care of me and my sweet babies. I feel very blessed!

February 11, 2011

Helping Dad at Work

I'm pretty sure Wes has never had a cuter or more impressed assistant as he did today. He only got scared once. It was so sweet to watch.

I'm going to have to start carrying my big camera with me. I just can't miss this stuff. Thankfully I had my phone. My Mom has a picture of me on a big thing like this with my Dad. She says I was about my baby Maggie's age (4 months). How cool! I'll post it if I can find it. Anyway... Super cute pictures for super wonderful memories.

February 6, 2011

Learning to Speak

Tonight I put Max in his sister's crib so I could go make him a bottle. He was not happy at all. The poor little guy is so sick he's been constantly following me around begging to be held. Lately he's also been starting to speak. When I put him in the crib he held out his arms and said, 'get out'. I said 'no'. So he said 'bye, bye'. So I said, 'bye, bye' and closed the door to his bedroom. He cried! I mean the SAD cry. All I could think was that to him 'bye, bye' means 'bye, bye will always be with me. Dumb I know, but I just about cried myself. Hold it together Lynda!!!  

Thankfully Daddy was there. He took these pictures while I was making the bottles. These babies love each other so much.

She's a very understanding and brave little sister so far. Not that she has a choice in the matter.

For my next trick...

Yep. I didn't take this picture. It would have freaked me out! LOL!!!

This is how the night ended. CUTE, CUTE, CUTE!!!