Friday, August 31, 2012

Toddler Brain

For anyone who has ever had their own toddler, or been around one for more than a will know this is 100% true!

  Hilarious right?!?!  I only wish I remember where I found this so I could site it properly.  Sorry!

Yay it's Friday!  I hope you have lots of fun things planned for this Labor Day weekend!

We are going to hang out with friends and watch the Notre Dame game tomorrow morning.  Not because we are Notre Dame fans, but because we really like our friends.  And secretly, we hope Notre Dame gets stomped!  Ha!  And then Saturday night we are ready for the BIG game!  Michigan's first game of the season.  I hate to get too cocky though as they will be playing Alabama so it could be a rough game....but we will be routing on Blue the whole way through!

I also have discovered the most perfect and easy snack for football season!  Trail mix baked brie!  Oh yum!  Of course, you might be a little disgusted with yourself when you realize how much cheese you managed to shovel into your face....but man, it's soooo good! 

Trail Mix Baked Brie
Source: Eat Live Run


1 small wheel of brie cheese (preferably triple cream)
handful of almonds
handful of craisins


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and place the brie on top.  Bake cheese for 15 minutes.  Remove from oven and carefully transfer to serving plate.  Drizzle with honey and top with almonds and craisins.  Serve with crackers or pita chips.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

BBQ Spiced Salmon and Sock Gloves

Weird title?  Yes!  Weird food?  No Way!

About a month or so ago, Lucy's Papa taught her how to put her socks on her hands.  And ever since then the trend has grown stronger and stronger (and stranger).  Now this kid will freak out if she sees socks lying on the floor and they aren't on her hands.  She will quickly put them on and then just walk around the house.  She likes to try to eat with them (gross!), and wear her necklace with them.  It always reminds me of those fancy long white gloves that girls used to wear when they got all dressed up.  It makes me laugh every time.

One sock on...
Another sock on...

Usually before we head out the door each morning Lucy's job is to get Roxy's toy to put in her kennel.  Yesterday Lucy had the toy but was searching and searching the house until she found her socks.  She quickly put the toy down, put the socks on her hands and then she was ready to put the toy in the kennel.  What a funny kid!

And last night was no exception to her trying to eat with her socks on.  Only this time she was sitting on my lap trying to paw at my food with her dirty socks. Needless to say I convinced her to ditch the socks.  And what is it about the food on a mommy's plate?  According to Lucy it tastes a million times better than her own.  She will race through her own dinner and start shouting, "All done!  All done!" and the second we get her out of her highchair she hightails it over to me and starts begging, "Up? Up?" until I pull her on my lap where she proceeds to ask for bite after bite.  She wouldn't touch the salmon with a ten foot pole on her tray, but suddenly when it's from mommy's plate the little girl couldn't get enough!  In her defense, it was pretty darn good salmon.

This BBQ Spiced Salmon was delicious and a cinch to make.  Just mix up a few spices, rub onto your salmon and broil for less than 10 minutes and voila!  Delicious and healthy dinner that your kids will be begging for....but only from your plate.

BBQ Spiced Salmon
Adapted (barely) from: How Sweet It Is


1.5 lbs fresh salmon
1 Tbs brown sugar
1/2 Tbs smoked paprika
1/2 Tbs onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp chili powder
pinch of salt and pepper


Set your broiler to high.  Mix the sugar and spices together in a small bowl.  Place fish on an oil lined baking sheet or pan.  Rub spice mixture on the fish to evenly coat.  Broil for 6-8 minutes, rotating once. Check to make sure fish is cooked completely, but be careful not to overcook as it will dry out.  Enjoy!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

The shirt off her back....

Lucy loves babies.  Like, LOVES them.  When we get to daycare each morning she can usually hear a baby crying down the hall and gets all upset and starting saying, "Baby! Baby!".  And she notices babies the store, on tv, on the side of the Pampers box, everywhere.  She even still calls herself a baby.  Anytime I have my camera out she immediatly wants to see the "baby" in the camera.  My iPhone has this feature where you can reverse the camera so you can watch yourself while you record yourself.  Lucy loves this.  She points to Mama and Baby, waves and says Hi and blows the baby (her) a kiss.  It's pretty adorable!

So because she has been so interested I decided to drag out one of MY old baby dolls.  It's a pretty realistic looking baby with the perk of looking real, but being able to take all the abuse my toddler inflicts.  Not that Lucy tries to be mean.  Just the opposite really.  She will pick Baby up (very creative name, I know) and sqeeeeeeeze and hug and kiss her.  She will even pat her little butt.  But then as soon as she sees the dog laying on her blankie or wants a drink of water or just simply gets bored -THUMP the baby is tossed on the floor. 

But for the most part, she really does try to take care of Baby.  I came out of our room one day to see her hovering over Baby and putting her paci in Baby's mouth.  This is a huge step in sharing for if you know my child you know that she basically loves her paci more than anything else.  Other times she will get her little picnic set out and set everything up and then start feeding Baby and giving her sips of water.  All complete with sound effects. 

Lately she has been very interested in taking Baby's (and her own) clothes off.  Last night after dinner she was struggling to take off Baby's clothes.  So I sat down and helped her.  Once Baby's clothes were off she went to work taking her shirt off.  At first I thought she just wanted to be naked like Baby.  But then, to my surprise, as soon as she got her own shirt off she started trying to put it on Baby.  I asked Lucy if she wanted Baby to wear her shirt and she nodded yes!  I laughed as I hugged and kissed my sweet girl who is learning to be the kind of kid who will literally give you the shirt off her own back. 

Of course, until she wants it back :)  She is only 1.

Feeding Baby while vising her Grandparents
Trying to get Baby's clothes off
There you go Baby!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

That's it...

I'm ready for fall!  This summer has been so hot and dry, but this weekend we finally got a patch of cold and rainy weather and I'm in love.  Sure it's only August, but summer...I've had my fill and I'm ready for fall.

I just love fall.  It's sweatshirt and jeans weather.  It's watching football and drinking hot tea on a lazy afternoon.  It's pumpkins and bonfires and s'mores!  Plus, its the time of year my all time favorite beer makes it's appearance....Sam Adams Octoberfest! 

I recently found this on Pinterest and LOVE it-

yes i am!

I am so excited to take Lucy to a pumpkin patch this fall and decorate pumpkins.  I am also looking forward to football season! Although this will most likely be another rough year for us Colts fans...but we just have to hang in there!

Another thing that will help make fall even more loverly is this new recipe we tried this week.  It was freaking awesome!  Perfect for those chilly fall days, or cold wintery ones.  It's healthy and  yummy and easy!  Well, it was healthy until we added ridiculous amounts of sour cream to the top.  What are ya gonna do?!?

Make the soup, get cozied up and settle in for fall!
Food styling credit: My hubby :)

Hearty Black Bean and Sweet Potato Soup
adapted from Shutterbean


1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 tbs olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, minced
3 carrots, chopped
1 32 oz container vegetable stock
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
1 tbs ground cumin
1 handful kale leaves, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 medium zucchini, chopped
1 medium sweet potato, peeled & chopped
2 cans black beans, rinsed & drained
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
hot sauce, avocado, chopped green onions and sour cream for toppings
salt and pepper


In a large pot, heat olive oil with onions on medium heat and cook until onions are transparent.  Add the carrots, garlic and cumin to the pot and cook for about 3 minutes.  Add the vegetable stock and canned tomatoes to the pot, raise the heat to medium high.  Add the kale, zucchini, red pepper, sweet potatoes and black beans and bring to a boil.  Add half of your chopped cilantro and stir.  Reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper as needed.  

Ladle soup into bowls and top with hot sauce, avocado, green onions and a big ole dollop of sour cream.


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Picnic in the Park

We finally had a week where the temps were in the normal "summer" range, as opposed to 115 degree weather we had been living with.  So we decided to celebrate by having a picnic at a nearby state park.  It was so lovely to be outside in the fresh air.  Since it's been so hot this summer, we have spent far too much time inside, so we were all a little happy to be outside, or "side" as Lucy calls it!

I had packed us a dinner the night before and once we were off work, we all headed to the park.  We played at a small playground for awhile and then set a huge sheet on the ground in a shady area.  We feasted on a Quinoa and Orzo Pesto Pasta Salad, olives, chips and dip, and some lovely Peach Tomato and Mozzarella Crostinis.  They were delish!  And other than the occasional ant, it was perfect!

Once our bellies were full we headed home and played outside some more.  Plus, since all the work had been done the night before there was minimal clean up.  Now, that's my kind of night!  We finally (finally!) got Lucy to sleep and then I relaxed on the couch with a crisp glass of wine.  Oh, how I love summertime.

Swinging like a big girl!
So pretty!
Our feast
Eating up

Peach Tomato Mozzarella Crostini
Source:  Joy the Baker


1 baguette, sliced and toasted with olive oil
Fresh ripe peaches, sliced thin
Fresh garden tomatoes, sliced thin
Fresh mozzarella, patted dry and sliced thin
Fresh basil, sliced into thin strands
Salt and pepper
Balsamic vinegar


Top each toasted baguette with a slice of peach, tomato and mozzarella and then a second slice of peach.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Top with basil and drizzle with balsamic vinegar.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Peach, basil, and brie cheese french bread pizza

Recently I made some french bread pizzas which were to die for!  I had seen this recipe for Peach, Basil and Brie Cheese pizza and thought it looked amazing!  However, I wasn't sure how that would fly with the rest of my little family.  So I also made a more "regular" pizza as well.  Pat wasn't a huge fan of the peach pizza....but oh my, I certainly was!  It was amazing!  The fresh peaches offered a juicy bite that was combined with soft and melty brie.  I could seriously live off of brie cheese!  And don't skimp on the balsamic reduction.  It is what truly brings this whole pizza together!

For our regular pizza I just used some pizza sauce, shredded mozzarella cheese, mushrooms, red onions, olives and bell peppers and cooked it the same way I did the peach pizza.  It was also delicious!  And the possibilities are could certainly dress it up anyway you like!

Peach, basil and brie french bread pizza


1 french bread loaf (preferably whole grain), sliced in half, lengthwise
2-3 ripe peaches, pitted and thinly sliced
4 oz brie cheese, thinly sliced
2 tbs freshly chopped basil
2 tsp olive oil
1 cup balsamic vinegar


Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Place bread on baking sheet and brush olive oil over each half.  Top each half with brie cheese slices and peaches.  Bake for 10 minutes.  Broil for 30 seconds until the cheese gets a tiny bit brown and bubbly.

Meanwhile, place vinegar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat; cook until reduced to about 2 tablespoons.  (takes roughly 5 minutes)

Drizzle balsamic reduction evenly over pizza and top with basil.  Enjoy!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Wedding fun!

A few weeks ago Lucy and I were in my good friend Brooke's wedding.  The wedding was gorgeous and Lucy did great!! :)  She was a flower girl and I was a bit worried about her freaking out with all the unknown people around, but she and I walked down the aisle together and she was a champ!  Let me tell you's hard work being in a wedding and having your daughter in the wedding too.  It took a LOT of coordination between Pat and I, but we pulled it off!  And Pat earned a well deserved beer that night for taking care of Lucy all day and carting her back and forth.  The only sad part is that I totally forgot to take any pictures.  All the pictures below are stolen from other people.  I really wish I would have taken a family picture, but oh well.

A rare pause in her racing around all evening!
Saying "Hi" to the other flower girl, Charli
Trying to get her to take a picture with Brooke...looks like Mommy will have to join!
The beautiful bride!  Great friends and cute babies
Bridal party!
Lucy dancing the night away :)

Hope everyone is having a GREAT Monday! :)

Friday, August 3, 2012

Keepin' It Real Fridays read that right.  We have a biter on our hands. Oh boy..........

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Bedtime Prayers

Lucy is so sweet when we say our prayers each night.  She clasps her hands right away and tries so hard to keep her eyes closed.  As soon as we are done she loudly claps and shouts "A-mon!"  This little girl is the sweetest blessing we could have ever dreamed for!