~Poop On Jelly~

Our Family's Bitter/Sweet Life

Thursday, February 24, 2011

I Smelled Spring

And, it smelled sweet! 

Last Thursday, Sweet Pea and I headed to the zoo with a few of our favorite peeps.  The weather was BEAUTIFUL! 

That was a week ago.  Today?  Not beautiful.  Nope.  Quite ugly, in fact.  The forecast boasts of freezing rain, sleet, and snow.  I have already been pelted in the head with freezing rain this morning, so I don't think the weather people are blowing smoke this go around. 

To top it off, Sweet Pea is on day 2 of a fever.  She is, of course, following all of the rules of Murphy's Law in her attempt to make life challenging.  (Isn't that a 4 year old's job?)  When she awoke feeling like a hot potato fresh out of the oven, we didn't have any medicine in the house. Of course.  (She made sure to tell the clerk at the store that she was sick and running a fever.  I got the stink eye from the clerk.  I'm pretty sure I'll never be allowed in that store again.)  I was also scheduled to start filling in for a preschool teacher who is on maternity leave.  Today was supposed to be my first day.  Of course.  And, it ain't looking good for tomorrow, either.  Sweet Pea is feeling worse today.  She hasn't had a fever all year.  I hate Murphy's Law.

However, I just have to share pictures from our beautiful day out last week.  We spent the day with my dear friend, Suzanne and her adorable kids, N and L.  L and Sweet Pea are a hoot together.  As for N, he often has me wishing we could have just one more. (I said, WISHING.  Don't get excited.)

For your viewing pleasure...

Excitement is in the air!

Is it just me, or does Sweet Pea look a little scared?!  She is so cautious.

Posing on the frog slide...

How stinkin' cute is this?!  I love his smile!

I'm thinking we have the next Heidi Klum here.  What do you think?  Ha!

They are getting so big. 

Taking in a little train ride.

Simply adorable!

Can you tell it was time to go?  L was having none of that.

Come on L.  It was a fun day.  We promise to come back again!

Would you like a cookie when we get to the car?

You would, huh?

Now, that's more like it!

A perfect day, indeed!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Bingo Anyone???

Dear Nurse Boy,

I was thrilled that we could find the time to sneak in a date night with your CRAZY schedule this semester.  I was even more excited when we got creative and planned a fun night out on a tight budget.  It was an added bonus that the sitter was begging to watch the kids.  I didn't even mind sharing a cheap burrito and a bag of chips with you for dinner.  I didn't need a fancy restaurant and a pricey bill.

The improve comedy club was a fun place to relax and escape for the evening.  It was a dive, but we were up for doing something different.  I didn't even mind it when they made us practically sit on the laps of the young couple were we seated next to.  The place was crowded and we may have been mistaken for a couple of sardines.  Cozy can be nice.  Plus, you and the gentleman next to us had a good laugh when you noticed you were practically holding hands.  I was almost jealous.  It was all a bit charming.  Plus, I didn't have to share my Diet Coke with anyone who might leave gooey backwash in my cup or accidentally knock it over.  I was game.  It promised to be a delightful night of adult conversation and some forced snuggle time with the love of my life.

Then you opened your mouth.

Oh, My Love, it wasn't nearly as charming when you introduced me to the adorable and oh-so-young couple as a 37 year old stay-at-home mom with 3 children and a flip phone.  I felt like I needed to pull out my bifocals, wrinkle cream, and brag about my latest Bingo win.  Yes, I was drooling over their cool phones and longing to play a game of Angry Birds, since it seems to be all the rage. (I realize that last sentence makes me sound like an eighty year old grandma.)  But, I was also laughing that they were sitting so close to one another, yet focused on the phones gently cradled in each of their hands. 

So what that she didn't have anything that drooped, dragged, or sagged?  Who cares that he didn't have a bald spot on the top of his head and his ears, nose, and chest weren't a scary, hairy forest?  I'm just glad that I can leave my flip phone in my purse and focus on my carefully planned night away from some of my favorite energy suckers.  I may be edging closer to middle age, but I think I am OK with that.

However, I am not OK with that particular introduction EVER AGAIN.  Let's practice a new introduction, shall we... Something like, "This is my young, beautiful, glowing, talented, and intelligent wife."  I think that will work.  Ya know, simple and sweet.

I'll work on keeping my flip phone hidden.  But, maybe I shouldn't give up on that wrinkle cream.  We can keep that between us, right?

Your Young, Beautiful, Glowing, Talented, and Intelligent Wife

Friday, February 18, 2011

Love Was In the Air!

Valentine's Day has come and gone... and my blog has yet to be updated.  I love Valentine's Day.  It falls after that stupid month, January, and right before the promise of spring.  (Sweet Pea would say, "Stupid is NOT nice!" if she could read.  Since she can't, I'm going to stick with it and call January what it is... STUPID... stupid cold, stupid snowy, stupid dark, stupid long.)  I love to see the excitement of Valentine's Day through the eyes of my children.  I used to love it back before Nurse Boy was in school for very selfish reasons.  I had somehow convinced Nurse Boy that Valentine's Day should be NEVER be jewelry free.  I mean, after a long January I needed something that sparkled.  Sigh... those were the days!  We have a new tradition... it is a bit cheaper and I think Nurse Boy might be a big fan.

I'm pretty sure the only thing that will sparkle in my future are pink sprinkles.  Still, this box promises a private date, no kids, and special time with my hardworking husband.  (For the record, I still like sparkly things ;0)

For the past 2 years, the kids have made homemade valentines!  It makes my heart swell that they are excited about this tradition! 

Don't you wish you could rock this headband?!

Sweet Pea and I had a special date on Valentine's Day.  We headed to the mall to stuff her very own pink dog.  She loved the whole experience.  She helped stuff it...

and made a wish on it's new little heart.  She tenderly placed the heart inside the dog and watched it get stitched up.

Of course it needed a bath right away, only to be followed by a good brushing.

She named her Elizabeth.

Then we spotted Elizabeth's puppy... and what kind of people would we be to separate a mom and her baby?!

Then we headed over to the food court for a little lunch.  Sigh, I will miss Sweet Pea next year when she is partying with her classmates... I just might need something sparkly!

I love my little Valentines!!!!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Friday Fare!

After 3 snow days... the boys went back to school!!!  Bruiser may rock the snow dance, but I have been groovin' to the BACK TO SCHOOL dance all day.  A friend of mine even took Sweet Pea for a play date this morning.  Ahhhh, some sweet, sweet silence was had by this overworked mom!  I got to clean the house and IT STAYED CLEAN! 

(Of course, the kids are all home and it is trashed now...)

I love a good routine, so snow days are always bittersweet.  I love the break from all of the running around, but it can also be even more work when we are all trapped inside.  None of us are homebodies, so we all get a bit stir crazy.  Hopefully this blizzard was the worst of it.  If not, my kids might be in school well into July.

Well, it is Friday and I am going to keep posting some recipes for those of you who are all out of ideas.  I have some recipes that our new to us that I can't wait to post.  Today, I am going to post one of my go-to recipes.

It's no secret that we eat a lot of chicken around here.  I also have Italian blood running through my veins, so I love a good pasta dish.  Plus, I like to make use of all of the leftovers around here.  And, let's not forget that I am a bit of a lazy cook.  As a result, I have developed a basic recipe that I make a lot around here.  I love it because I can change the veggies, cheese, pasta, or even meat and the dish is completely different.

Since you can adjust this recipe to your family's liking, I thought I would share it with all of you.

Playful Pasta

1 bag of whole wheat egg noodles
1 bag of frozen peas
6 Tablespoons of butter (and it isn't even a Paula Dean recipe!)
1 1/2 cups of mild cheddar cheese
2 cups of cooked and shredded chicken
1/2 teaspoon of garlic (or more)
2 Tablespoons of dried parsley

1.  Cook both the pasta and peas according to the packaging and drain.

2.  Place the pasta and peas in the pan you cooked the pasta in.  Add the butter, garlic, and parsley.

3.  Add (warm) chicken and cheese.  Mix well. 

4.  Serve immediately!

Remember, you can change up the meat, the type of pasta, the vegetables (fresh or frozen), and the type of cheese.  I have even been known to use fat free Italian dressing or olive oil in place of the butter.  It just depends what I have in the pantry on any given night.

Another pointer?  Buy those rotisserie chickens that they sell for $5 in the deli section of the grocery store whenever you can.  I pull the meat off and place it in a freezer bag in my freezer.  I always have shredded chicken on hand when I am in a pinch!  This one tip keeps me sane when it's been a long day and I don't want to end my evening slaving over the stove...  Which is pretty much EVERY night.  (Throw wrestling raw chicken into the equation and you just might find me on the phone ordering a pizza to be delivered!)

Am I the only one who often feels like Cinderella?  I'm NOT talking about the Cinderella with a magical Fairy Godmother, a beautiful gown, and glass slippers.  I am talking the one with disheveled clothes, endless chores, and some rather talkative and demanding children  mice.  Thank goodness I DO have a Prince Charming!

Yep, I'm living the good life.

Actually, I am.  It just isn't as glamorous or as stress free as I once imagined, but I wouldn't change a thing... most days.

Have a wonderful weekend!!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Stir Crazy

We are getting ready to welcome our 3rd snow day this week, our 6th snow day this school year.

I need an IV of Diet Coke.... STAT!

Welcome to...

The Blizzard of Oz! 

It all started the other day when Bruiser told me about all the ways he could make it snow...

by turning his pajamas inside out, flushing ice cubes down the toilet, sleeping with a spoon under his pillow, and doing the Snow Dance.

Needless to say, his siblings immediately joined in on his wishful thinking.

I even had to make sure they didn't actually believe all of this nonsense.  They quickly reminded me that God makes it snow.  (God and I are going to have a chat about that one when I get to heaven.  Snow is pretty... about once a year.  I am sooo over it.)

Two days later, we woke up to a blizzard.  The city shut down and we started to feel like shutins.  Oh, the kids loved it.  Funny thing, they weren't out in the blizzard clearing the driveway or walkway.  They didn't change their socks and pants several times.  They didn't have snow blowing in their faces and taking their breath away.

The next day found us with around 10 inches of snow.  Oh, and a snowblower that stopped working partnered with a broken shovel. 

 Nonetheless, the kids were full of smiles...

and creativity!

 Bruiser has been baned from all of his snow tactics!

The snow piles are almost as tall as Sweet Pea.

OK, Spring... you are welcome to join us ANYTIME!!!