Saturday, December 3, 2011

My Week (or so...)

Play time with nephews #1 through 3...

We went to see Santa in the Old Mill District (Bend, OR)!  They have huge Lincoln Logs and Legos to play with while you wait...and every nook and cranny has scenes set up so you can take lots of pictures with your kids (or nephews).  They even got to meet the bog guy and let him know what they want for Christmas!

Anyone notice their matching hats?  I crocheted those for them and the baby even has a matching hat!  However, the baby's hat won't fit for too much is a tight fit now!

Almost everyone likes holding the new baby...  Nephew #1 suddenly remembered babies cry (a lot)!  I had to coerce him into holding him for this picture...sugar-coated something was involved, I'm sure!  Also, baby was getting he was a bit fussy!  That smaller on #1 is his "hurry up will you?" smile, lol...

Nephew #2 is really enjoying having a second little brother!  Though I am sure that will change when he starts getting into his stuff!

Nephew #3 is really liking the idea of having a baby brother!  He is still thinking about him as that abstract "thing" in Mommy's tummy though for the most part.  He came back to Spokane with me for 3 weeks, even though he knows the baby is "real", I don't think it has sunk in yet...even though he tells me daily that he's talking to the baby at night while he sleeps.

Even an awesome aunt like me can get "baby glares" when using the flash on the cell phone...he was not happy about the bright flashing lights!  He looks a little beat up here...the red around his eyes id from being born!  My sister delivered this one with only 2 pushes!

And on Monday...I was headed back to Spokane with an almost 4 year old in tow!  I forget how different traveling with kids is.  It normally takes me 7.5 hours to make the drive, with #3 along though...9.5 hours!  And really, I only made 2 stops I wouldn't have made without him (McD's to play for about 10 minutes on the big toys and a park next to the highway for another 20 minutes)!  All potty stops were in and out, no playing around!  The difference is that I normally don't have to take the time to get someone else in and out of a car seat....those things are evil.

Tuesday we had a busy day!  After taking his Uncle to work, we did a little grocery shopping, cleaned the basement (kinda), and got some Christmas decorations up!  Because we aren't staying here for Christmas (technically we will be back for Christmas), I wasn't going to put up any decorations.  But, thanks to Christmas movies and books and such...the nephew was convinced Santa would forget him if we didn't have decorations up!

So, while #3 watched cartoons from my Rocking chair (that I have had since about his age or even earlier), I got to work putting up a small display of decorations.

I got out one of our potted Martha Stewart trees (that I got on Clearance in January last year), added about 10 super small ornaments to the already decorated tree (I have 2 red "words", peace & joy, 3 tiny silver packages, and 3 glass (maybe plastic) 6-pointed stars in green, along with a tiny stuffed santa ornament and the small white bear in gold ornaments all on the tree).  The "topper" for the tree this year is a bow with a bit of plastic holly and berries stuck to it.  This came off the very first Christmas present that my other half every gave me!  Not that the bow is all that's just an interesting detail.  It actually came on the gift his work gave him (a big hinged wooden box with a clock on the front of it) that he turned around and re-gifted to me (we hadn't been dating too long, 5 months or so).  We do still have the box sits on the floor by our television in the living room to hold all the remotes we don't "need" to have sitting out all the time.  The snowman next to the tree is felt with a wire running up from a flat base so he's sturdy.  A stuffed Santa in Blue on a sled...a small train set going around the tree...and another stuffed Santa behind the tree!  The Santa that you can't see here is in a metal sleigh (planter) that is stuffed with a couple of red kitchen towels (so they don't sink beyond sight).  Santa is sitting in the back of the sleigh with a giant (to him) stuffed bear (ornament) leaning out the front of the sleigh.  In Santa's lap (and hanging from both hands) are piles of brightly wrapped packages!  Of course, the packages are really blocks of styrofoam wrapped in bits of paper with ribbons and bows (and again, ornaments), but it looks really cool!  There is also a strand of "mini garland" piled in the sleigh as well, it's gold and the beads are about the size of small peas.  I will get a photo of it soon!

Last but not least...there are two things I haven't mentioned on the table (an old desk by our front door that I covered with a sheet from my fabric scraps).  First is the gold box.  That was a gift from came full of bath products, you know the kind...they sell them by the truckload at this time of year!  Right now it had a pile of old photos in it (waiting to get scanned into the computer), but I figure it can also hold cards (assuming we get any).  And lastly, the white tree in the bottom left corner!  That was crocheted by my Mother!  It has green and red beads threaded onto the yarn to look like ornaments.  This is one of my favorite decorations!  It is simple...I like simple.

It took us a few days, but we eventually got the dining arrangements here at the house worked out for mister short stuff!  We don't have any booster seats here anymore...gave the two I had back to my sister over the years!  So, we finally figured it out after he struggled to reach the table for a day or two...a soda box!  It worked perfectly on this chair, sadly the chair tipped (with kid and soda box) and when he landed, it broke an upright!  He had a mark on his back from landing on the top bit of chair, but was fine within 10 minutes.  We swapped him to one of the metal framed chairs though (and a new case of soda since I had to treat a low and open that one) just in case it happens again.  The metal chairs are about an inch he has trouble sitting straight up to the table now, but it is still better than trying to kneel/stand on the chair!

And why not sing (and dance) in the shower too?!  Don't mind the weird looking grout...this whole shower needs to be redone...the thin layer of "pretty grout" they put over the super old, needs to be replaced grout has been flaking off since we moved in!  He is so funny in the shower though!  He sings and dances and plays until I turn the water off!  And I usually get "Hey!  I wasn't done yet!" as a response!  I actually have a 2 minute video of him dancing in the is so funny (and totally G-rated...nothing below the belly button)!

#3 and I both came down with a head, we have been medicating it up and drinking lots of tea!  It is a good time of year for tea anyway, but who could (or should) resist a cup of "Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride" or "Gingerbread Spice"?  The Sugar Cookie tastes like real cookies in a cup!  The Gingerbread definitely has a spiced is also #3's favorite!  He asked me to make him a pot of it 2 days ago!  He's still working on it, but he is down to only having a cup or two left (kid sized cups)...he's been drinking it out of the fridge.  Strawberry milk is his preferred drink, but this is a close second!

I wanted to keep him up a little later Wednesday night...and what better way to do that than to sit him down to watch a movie with a bowl full (those little kid-sized snack bowls) of mini Marshmallows!  Really, I think he had maybe 20 of them...not a ton, but it did the trick!  He was up until about 10 and then crashed hard!  I won't be doing it again either...he was up at 6:45am anyway, lol.  He was a very happy boy that night though!  You can tell from the Marshmallow dust all over his face!

During nap times I have been trying to get last-minute gifts put together...I found this heart shaped Christmas ornament pattern online.  I print them on normal paper and then trace them on to cardboard (soda box...because it is still thin enough that I can stick a pin through it).  Then I pin the cardboard form to the fabric (doubled in this case) and cut it out.  For the second side, I used the first piece of fabric so that they match!  I'm not making an ornament, but I really liked the size of the heart!

The weekend has started off with trying a new recipe for low-carb pancakes!  Coconut Flour ones (found here)!  These were awesome!  Next time I will make a double-batch or better so I can freeze some, between the three of us we ate all 12 of them!
For our little Carbivore (I love whoever came up with that name!), I also made fried apples!  In retrospect, I should have used a little water rather than butter on them, but he gobbled it up!  The up side to traveling and making a couple of "quick meal" nights at McDonald's is that the kid's meals come with entirely too much food for a 4 year old!  He ate about half the fries (those tiny boxes are so cute) and his cheeseburger along with his milk and we brought the bag of apple slices home for another meal.  Today, I diced up the 5 slices from one bag and cooked them until they started to brown a bit.  Then, I added about 1 teaspoon of a sugar and cinnamon mixture I made for his toast (the kid loves cinnamon sugar on his toast!) and let it cook for a few more minutes after stirring it in.

I love my little pans...they really make things like pancakes so much easier to cook!  The two on the bottom of the burner are a set (sold in 2-packs nearly everywhere) and are the perfect size for mini-pancakes and fried eggs!  I always cook with the pair...I start the pancake or egg on the right and when it's ready to flip, I flip it into the pan on the left!  These had enough butter in them that I only had to add about 1 teaspoon of butter to the first pan and they all just slid right out of the pan!  The blue pan on top needs a is slightly larger (fits 2 eggs perfectly), but it was perfect for cooking 5 tiny apple slices in!  Also, I had all three pans going on a single burner on the stove...bonus!  Anyone who has tried to flip a low-carb pancake knows it is not an easy task!  This is why, in my belief, that low-carb pancakes nearly always come in "dollar pancake" form!  These pans, the red set anyway, make perfect 3-inch across pancakes with no worrying about getting a spatula under them!

That brings us to the last few items!  First...I went shopping!  I really needed jeans that fit right!  Trying to fit into my size 26/28 jeans without a belt, duct tape, and craft glue just wasn't cutting it anymore!  And with the cold weather, the pull-ons where just too thin!  Even my "skinny jeans" were fitting loose and are a thin material.  I was actually able to get into the pretty pair of jeans I bought before surgery today!  I have a funky "high up" fat sits above my jeans, I have no idea why...but, it gives me a very funky shape at the moment!  Anywho, with coupon in hand I went to Lane Bryant today in search of a new pair of jeans and a body shaper (Spanx).  I wanted to try the new T3 jeans, they have the "make you look thinner" panel in them!  I did find a Spanx thing that I thought would work with a new dress I have, but the fit was "funny" and I just wasn't comfortable with my underwear having a "flap system" that I was supposed to urinate through!  It looked like a vagina.  Also, at $88 for a single piece of clothing that was meant to not be was a little steep for me!

As for the jeans though...oh my gosh!  First of all, the fit is great!  They sit higher up on my waist and have a spandex-like material in the band so there is no "butt gap" going on!  Then there is the size...I have been swimming in my size 22 "skinny jeans" so I started with 2 sets of size 20 jeans (in different styles).  Both were too big!  I liked the way the T3 jeans looked better so it was back out to grab the next 2 sizes down (they were actually huge on me)!  The size 16's could not be zipped, but otherwise looked awesome when buttoned...the unzipped pant look is "in", right?  The 18's feel a bit loose on some places and a wee tight in others, but they look and feel great overall!  Also, I am so psyched to be out of the "20's"!  Ideally, I'd like to be in a 10 or less when I'm done losing weight...but I'll settle for just not having to shop at stores like Lane Bryant (not that I don't love their clothes...but I'd really like to be able to shop at "normal" stores! last package arrived!  Over the last 2 weeks I have been waiting on products for me (reviews of the adult variety), Christmas presents (ThinkGeek is awesome) for the boyfriend, and Bread!  Low-carb, awesome bread!  It has been well over a year since I have had a sandwich.  I've tried the Oopsie Rolls for Hamburgers, but I find them a bit too moist for my liking.  That being said, I have found Julian Bakery online!  There are two bakeries near me that sell the bread, but it is still a 30 mile drive each way to them!  Gas is spendy and shipping was only $5.95 when I ordered 6 loaves!

We got 2 loaves of "Smart Carb #1", which has only 1g net carb per slice!  I also got two loaves of Cinnamon Raisin Bread with 2g net carbs, one loaf of Sourdough, which has 4g per slice (so we will savor that one at one slice at a time), and a loaf of "Mana from Heaven" with 2g net carbs.  I had a slightly carby lunch because I made myself a PB&J!  However, I scrimped on the PB and the J...1 Tablespoon of Skippy Natural (Chunky) Peanut Butter for 4g net carb, 1 Tablespoon Sugar Free Marionberry Preserves (5g net carbs), and 2 slices of bread (2g net carb for both)...11g net carbs for lunch!  Breakfast was about 5g net carbs (we don't count the carbs from sweeteners, cream, or eggs so that cuts down the pancake carbs to about 0.5g per pancake if my estimates are right).  We still aim for roughly 20g net carbs a day, so that leaves me with about 4g for dinner.  I can handle that since dinner is either going to be mac & cheese (all eggs and cream and cheese) or breakfast "pizzas" using sage pork sausage as a crust.

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