Sunday, March 31, 2013

Yogurt Berry Smoothie

I make a lot of different smoothies, and this is one of my favorites. It is very thick, more like a dessert. Yum! If you don't want it so thick you can increase the milk to 1 1/4 C and decrease the yogurt to 1/2 cup. Serves two.

Combine and blend in a full size blender:
3/4 C fat free, plain Greek yogurt
1 C plain almond milk
1 C frozen blueberries
1/2 C frozen spinach
1/2 C frozen mangoes
1/4-1/2 avocado, depending on how much fat you want to consume

This makes about 24oz, which is enough for me and my four year old to share. He loves his "moothies"!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Easter Manicure

Here are my Easter inspired nails! I used:
OPI I Theodora You (pink)
OPI My Vampire is Buff (cream)
OPI You're Such a Budapest (purple)
OPI Which is Witch (holo glitter)
Zoya Neely (green)

I ended up really liking this, which was a surprise-I never thought I'd go for a multicolored manicure. I'm too much of a perfectionist. I thought the colors went together well. I am not really a fan of pastels, so this was almost my entire collection of soft colors. Well, I guess I can live it up every once and a while!!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Parenting Goals

This is a note I wrote myself a couple weeks ago:

  • Be mindful of my words and intonation. This is important for all communication in the home, including conversations with my husband, and phone chats, etc.
  • Give J enough time to complete his tasks. Don't rush him, he's four. Things will take more time than if I were doing it myself. I need to constantly remind myself of this.
  • Take time everyday to spend with just J. This will go a long way to ease the jealousy of having a new brother. 
  • Turn a negative into a positive. For example: Instead of, "Stop yelling!", say, "We use our quiet voice inside. You can yell when we play outside."
  • Stop saying "no" so much! It doesn't work. J eventually tunes me out, and it loses all meaning. 
  • Ask for help. He will feel included, and the workload will be lessened for me. That way, he still has the option of saying no. Ask if he will help me by doing XYZ, instead of ordering him around. I have been feeling so bossy lately!
  • Get down on the floor more often and just  PLAY! Every minute counts. It doesn't have to be 5 hours straight to make a wonderful memory for him.
  • LISTEN. When J tells me something it is important! I may not be 100% interested, but to him, having Mama pay attention means the world.
I'm hoping that this will bring me back to where I want to be as a mom. I have been feeling disconnected and frustrated lately. I have been more mindful of my behavior for two weeks. Not surprisingly, J's behavior has been much better. He stopped getting into things that were off limits. He doesn't whine as much. He doesn't have a huge tantrum every day like he used to. I'm curious to see if he is going through another stage, or if it is a direct result of my changes. 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


My take on the = for marriage equality.
OPI The Thrill of Brazil with stripes of Zoya Kimmy. I made my own striping brush by trimming down a regular paintbrush. Success!

Chocolate Chip Almond Cookies

These are pretty healthful considering they're a cookie! I didn't tell my husband the main ingredient-pretty sure he'd run! These are gluten and dairy free, so that's a plus for people with food allergies. These are so good because of the melty, ooey, gooey chocolate chips. They are best eaten warm out of the oven. If you have leftovers put them in the microwave for 15 seconds or so. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT eat them cold. You will be sad you didn't heed my warning!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Measure and put into a food processor:
1-15oz can cannellini beans, rinsed well and drained*
3/4 C plain, unsalted almond butter
1/3 C honey
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
pinch of salt

Blend until all the ingredients are completely smooth. To that, add:
3/4 C chocolate chips
Pulse a few times to incorporate the chocolate chips.
Alternately, you can put the dough in a separate bowl and stir in the chocolate chips.

Use a wet spoon to plop dough onto the cookie sheet.
Flatten into a cookie shape.
Bake for 12-14 mins.

Yield: Approx. 1 dozen 3-in wide cookies

*Tips- I have also used garbanzo beans, but I prefer cannellini beans. They have a more mild flavor that goes better with the almond and chocolate.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Today's Snack-Eggplant Fries

I made eggplant oven fries today. They were absolutely amazing! I have to give thanks to my sister in law, I borrowed the idea from her. You should check out her website, you'll find some great recipes!

This is what I came up with, using what I had available:
One eggplant 
A cup of Greek yogurt
A cup of breadcrumbs, I did half regular, half panko
1/2 tsp salt
Fresh cracked pepper to taste
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder 
1 tsp paprika 
1 tsp cumin 
A dash of red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp water 

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Cut eggplant into fry shape. Mix bread crumbs and salt together, set aside. Mix yogurt with remaining seasonings, vinegar, and water. Dip eggplant in yogurt mixture, coat well, then dip into breadcrumbs. Bake on a non-stick cookie sheet for ten minutes, turn fries so they brown evenly, bake for ten more minutes. 

I ate mine plain, but my four-year-old wanted his dipped in ranch. He liked them!

A New Find!

I took the boys to the mall today. After playing we walked around and I noticed one of the nail salons had a huge display of OPI polishes in the window. I don't know why it hadn't dawned on me before, but I realized they probably have a bunch of hard to find polishes. I went in and asked, and the manicurist told me they were all on sale. OMG!! Too bad I'm on a budget at the moment. I had the boys with me so I only stayed a minute, but I picked up a beauty!

Simmer and Shimmer from the Burlesque Collection, Holiday 2010

It has tiny blue, purple, silver, yellow, and orange glitter particles in it. It's just the right amount for layering one coat over another polish, or a couple of coats by itself for a real glitter bomb. I can't wait to use it!

A close up so you can see how sparkly it is.

With flash. One coat over two coats of Nein! Nein! Nein! Ok Fine!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Time to Reevaluate

I have noticed that my inspiration in general is gone. I love writing and it used to come so easy for me, it just poured out. Now it feels like a struggle. I'm hoping this blog will help me to become inspired again. On the topic of feeling uninspired:

I've lost my spark when it comes to exercise and clean eating. I was sick with the worst cold of my life at the beginning of the year so I stopped going to the gym. When I recovered three weeks later, yes three weeks! I never went back. Truthfully I haven't figured out why. I know it's all in my head so I need to just get out and do it! As far as the eating goes, I have not completely fallen apart! I still eat a minimum of one clean meal a day. I was eating completely clean, but after some self examination and deep thought I came to the conclusion that was too strict. On a bad day I still eat one clean meal. A good day I'll eat completely clean. I'm still experimenting and trying to find what works best for me.

I am happy to report that, even without exercise, I have maintained my current weight. It may not sound like much, but I am happy I haven't gained back any of the thirteen pounds I lost. I feel that I've been successful with my eating, considering I am at a steady weight. I don't have to be perfect, which is something I always struggle with. Next goal, back to the gym!

My nails today: Watermelon and Avenue Maintain, both Essie.

Friday, March 22, 2013

I fell asleep before 8 pm last night. I have been so exhausted lately. Spending all day every day with the boys is a challenge! I think E is going through a growth spurt. He is nursing a lot more, and is less interested in solid food. J is rambunctious as always. I asked him what he wanted to do today, he was too riled up to answer me. So off to the park it is! I am glad I got enough sleep (finally!) I bet today will be a much better day.  

I just wanted to share something J told me yesterday-
Me: You could always tell me a story, I love those!
J: Once upon a time there was a boy named J, he always loved his mommy very much. The end!!!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

I have a clear idea of what I'd like my blog to be. It has taken a long time, and I am happy to be here to share it with you. I will focus on the trials and triumphs of raising two young boys. Being a stay at home mom is difficult and wonderful all at once, I'm hoping writing about it will be cathartic for me. Cooking is a passion of mine, so I will definitely share recipes. And lastly, I love nail polish. It would be safe to say it is an obsession. I enjoy posting swatches from my collection. 

So, welcome!