Monday, January 30, 2012

Meal Plan Monday: January 30th, 2012

Curried Chickpeas
Chicken in Coconut Milk

Potato Soup with Kale

Italian Lentils and Noodles

White Bean and Pork Stew

Spaghetti and GF Garlic Toast


Curried Chickpeas and Rice

Gluten Free Schnitzel with Home Fermented Rotkraut and German Potato Salad

  • 6 boneless pork loin chops (1/2 inch thick, 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1/3 cup gluten free all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup crushed corn Chex cereal
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 3 tablespoons oil


Place chops between 2 sheets of waxed paper. With meat mallet or rolling pin, pound to 1/8-inch thick.
Measure flour and cereal onto separate sheets of waxed paper. Whisk together egg and milk in bowl. Lightly coat cutlets in flour, shaking off excess; dip in egg mixture, then into cereal crumbs, pressing crumbs to coat.
Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add cutlets to skillet; cook, turning once, until golden brown, about 3 minutes per side. Remove cutlets to warm platter. Serve immediately.

mpm-1 Find more meal plans at Organizing Junkie

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Wordless Wednesday: January 25th, 2012

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Meal Plan Monday: January 23rd, 2012

Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin (we left out the soy sauce, it was still amazing.)

Mmm, grilled cheesus.  For my favorite Kitchen Witch.
Black Beans and Quinoa (I found a recipe on Pintrest, but I'm just going to mix up what I have in the kitchen.)


Chunky Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese

Greek Turkey Meatloaf with Avocado Tzatziki Sauce (we have leftovers from last week.)

Homemade Chicken Strips and French Fries

Mini Pizzas

Chili and Cornbread

Our Crockpot Chili Recipe
2 cups dry red beans; soaked overnight; cooked until soft
2-3 tbsp chili powder
1-2 tbsp cumin
1 onion; chopped
1 green pepper; chopped
3-4 garlic cloves; minced
olive oil
water or stock

Heat crockpot on high. Sweat onion, pepper, and garlic in olive oil for about 30 minutes (depends on your crockpot. Add seasonings, deglaze with water or stock, tossing with veggies. Add beans and liquid to cover. Cook on high for 4-5 hours.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Meal Plan Monday: January 16th, 2012

I am feeling adventuresome this week. I want to make some real food, and get our family back onto some foods that might take longer to create, but are worth it for our bodies and (as cheesy as it sounds) souls. It makes me feel good to busy myself in the kitchen, working to cook food that I know is good for us.

Massaman Curry and Rice

Sauteed Leeks
Pork Roast with Green Beans and Acorn Squash

Turkey Meatballs with Avocado Tzatiki on Gluten Free Pita

Vegan Enchiladas with Black Beans and Yellow Rice

Spaghetti with Green Sauce

French Onion Soup with Homemade Bread

Baked Ziti

Red Potato and Leek Soup

Friday, January 13, 2012

Fix-It Up Friday: January 13th, 2012

Well, the two weeks are up! And... there is room for improvement. There were a few challenges I didn't take into account when I made my schedule.

  • My husband is asleep during the day. This limits my access to the bedroom. Also to our bathroom. And the laundry.
  • I am a busy girl! Play dates, story times, field trips, grocery runs, lunch plans. So no time to do chores during the day. It wouldn't be any big deal, except: after going out with three kids I am ready to come home, get dinner ready and get reconnected in hopes of a smooth transition to dinner and bedtime. And after bedtime is when L3 settles in for some major nursing, so nothing gets done then either.
Luckily, Mike has taken up getting home in the wee hours of the morning and doing a run through of the living and playrooms, as well as loading the dishwasher and starting our oatmeal in the crock pot. This helps immensely. 

So, aside from the Daily Tasks that we really can't put off, I reorganized tasks into 3 days. 

See it here.

Nothing much more to say aside from: we'll have to see how this one goes.

How do you manage to keep up at home on the days when you are gone? I am trying to remember how I managed my home when I worked full time!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Tell All Tuesday: Breastfeeding Challenges January 10th, 2012

I have been breastfeeding for just over four years. I managed to keep exclusively breastfeeding for 5 months while working full time and pumping while I was gone 10 hours a day. L1 breastfed until a few months after L2 was born, then even un-weaned 6 months later to continue until just before I became pregnant with L3. L2 continued to breastfeed until a few weeks before L3 was born, when we had to wean for personality issues (sessions were ending with me bruised and battered). I did attempt to un-wean after L3's birth, but he wasn't really asking anymore. Besides, L3 and I were having some issues establishing our breastfeeding relationship.

For about the first week of L3's life nursing wasn't quite right. I was sore, but it wasn't unbearable. She lost a bit of weight, and there was some concern. But, we took her to meet our chiropractor and get adjusted. Things got better. She gained almost 3lbs in the next few weeks. But, things went sour again.

After 4 years of breastfeeding being "easy" for me, I was in pain. Not just pain, but cracking and bleeding (can you even read that without wincing?). I called on the know-how of a wonderful lactation consultant, Marianne from Mother Nurture Breastfeeding. I have a "plan" worked out to get past the issues that could be causing the damage, but nothing is certain. Craniosacral Therapy with Bryn today, and another adjustment (really need to set up regular appointments) with our chiropractor, Dr. Matt. L3 and I are trying some different positioning techniques. We might need to explore a frenectomy for tongue tie. For the time being, L3 is satisfied breastfeeding on the side that is not in as much pain. I am using a pump on the damaged side so it can have time to heal so I don't get engorged or risk mastitis. Even that is going pretty well, my little single manual gets about 5oz a session.

All sounds so *hopeful*, right? Well, it is. But it also sucks. A lot. I feel sad, guilty, and embarrassed. Sad that I have to put my girl through the hoops to try and get things worked out (she hates the new positions). Guilty that I might have done something wrong, didn't teach her right, waited too long to try nursing, or didn't wait long enough (mommy guilt is a horrible thing). And embarrassed to share not just that my breasts were damaged and hurting, but that I have had the dark moments in the wee hours, while crying in the dark because of the pain, wondering if breastfeeding was really worth it. So far I have decided that the pain is not worth putting up with, but that doesn't mean breastfeeding isn't worth the efforts to try and fix things. I am SO glad for the support I have to remind me of that. 

So, share! The difficulties and triumphs. The challenges and rewards.  

Friday, January 6, 2012

Fix-It Up Friday: January 6th, 2012

So, I am not big on the title of this series. I am going to need to find something different for it. But, for now...

My weekly house blessing used to be GREAT. My husband and I could get the house CLEAN and ready for the week in one day, working together. I loved it. It set us all up for an easier time during the week. I didn't have to gather the energy to clean and be with my boys every day, I could keep the attention where it should be: on my boys!

With all the changes around here: new work schedule and new baby; that plan isn't working anymore.

So, for the first few weeks of this year, I will be testing a few systems for keeping our home and family happy, at least somewhat organized, in clean clothes, and with limited mess. I will test each method for a minimum of two weeks. Here is a screenshot of my first:

You can also look at it directly here (click the Folder tab to organize it by day), but please don't change anything!

I also intend to clear up our home from clutter in a more general sense, and I think this Declutter and Organizing Calender is the way to go.

As you can see, I started this plan on Sunday. I wanted to be able to tell you how it is going so far!

I feel really good about the list. The daily jobs are basic, and the weekly ones are separated out so I can complete them in very little time. I did slack on it on the days we were gone, so I might have to rethink our "weekend" days, since we do normally spend them out of the house and I don't have time to get the weekly jobs done then.

Stay tuned for next week to see if I keep this system, what adjustments I might make, or if I have found a new schedule to try. How do you keep up with household duties? Please share your thoughts and your system!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Tell All Tuesday: January 3rd, 2012

It has been a full end of the year around here. There have been highs and lows of course.

L3 arrived TWO WEEKS EARLY. And being that we expected her to come later (L2 was a week "late") we weren't totally prepared. The Christmas tree had only gone up the day before labor started!

Breastfeeding did not kick off easily or right away like it had in the past. It took us almost a week to work out her latch issues. I even had cracked nipples! After never having breastfeeding issues, this was really frustrating!

Then there was a period of concern about L3's weight gain. She was still -5oz from her birth weight a week later (even without IV fluids in labor.) But she solved that one with the development of her latch and my SUPERMILK! She went on to gain 14oz the next week!

I had intended to allow for the exploration of un-weaning L2 after my milk came in. He has breastfed a few times, but mostly I put him off and save it for the times that NOTHING ELSE WORKS. So, I am confessing I am not the all accepting, tandem nursing mom I was able to be for L1. I feel pretty guilty about that, but also realize that L2's needs are different than L1's were. Otherwise he would be requesting more, right?

On the potty bowl!
I wanted to try to practice Elimination Communication from the beginning with L3. I settled for watching for her cues and trying not to let a dirty diaper sit. Not that she would allow that. She was clear when she needed a dry diaper. We have started up though, and I hope to manage more as we go on.

Something that has been different from this pregnancy from the last ones was the weight gain. I had always finished off down when all is said and done. This time I am not. I am back in my "comfy" jeans, but not back to size. Granted it has only been 4 weeks, I lost so much weigh between pregnancies, and I am ready to head back to Zumba and watching our diet more closely (the last month being mostly comfort foods, junk, candy, and take out) so I don't expect it to take long to feel fit again. I am actually surprised I care about my weight this way, and want to work on focusing the frustration on feeling fit and able to keep up with my children over fitting into certain sizes.

We have NOT kept up with our weekly house blessing. With Mike moving to graveyard and my being to uncomfortable and tired to keep up myself, we slacked. So now we need to find a way to make it work with a new baby and Mike on graveyard. Stay tuned for more on that!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Meal Plan Monday: January 2nd, 2012

I feel like our Meal Plan should be some sort of New Year New Food deal. Then I decided: screw that. We are still adjusting to a new baby, I am not adding a bunch of new recipes that take my time. So, I went with TWO new recipes, and left the rest as some trusted favorites. Enjoy!

Taco Salad
Butternut Squash Macaroni and Cheese (subbing pumpkin, because I still have ton!)
Halibut Casserole
Chicken and Rice Casserole

Baked Ziti
Penne pasta
3c Spaghetti sauce
2c Mozzarella cheese
2c Ricotta cheese

Boil noodles until just done. While boiling, mix ricotta cheese with  spaghetti sauce. Drain noodles, toss with sauce mixture, place in oven safe dish. Top with grated mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350 until hot, finish under broiler for browned cheese on top.