Monthly Archives: April 2017

Baby Bea Sees The World

I think as a mother of one I was pretty oblivious to how easy it was to continue prioritizing my personal priorities. Having a child is a lot of work and a huge responsibility, but when there’s just one, there are so many situations where you can live life as usual with a baby on your hip and a smile on your face. With two… you’re outnumbered, you have to accommodate for two separate sets of needs (not including your own) and a lot of times, it’s just easier to stay home and place your desires on the back burner. Travel is one such situation that was slightly more complicated when Lucille came into the world, but seemed down right impossible, miserable, foolish, selfish, etc once Lennon entered the world.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying those with kids shouldn’t travel. Quite the opposite, really. I think it’s very important my kids see as much of the world as possible, learn about other cultures and ways of life so they can be understanding of differences and so we can have fun outside our comfort zone. Travelling with my children is one of the things I most look forward to as well as one of the things I think will be most important in our lives. But for the past two years… it was a personal priority that both kids were too young to understand or benefit from. Because they are so close in age, neither were old enough to understand why it’s a benefit to be in a car or plane for so long… and really, it wouldn’t be a benefit to them. Sure, they’d enjoy a zoo on vacation, but not more then the one we only have to travel an hour to get to. We’d be taking the trips so I could see someplace new, making them miserable in the process as they fed off each others misery.

Anywho, I think the kids are now old enough to enjoy a vacation!! And I am soooo excited (and somewhat nervous) to be taking a 9 day road trip starting next week!!! And in my excitement I thought I’d throw back to when Lucille took her first vacation to Connecticut and her 2nd to Florida! Back when I thought I’d keep the tradition of at least one annual trip… but I also thought babies 1 and 2 would be about 2.5 years apart… haha! (All but one of these pictures are from Connecticut… I can’t find my Florida pictures anywhere, I don’t want to talk about it!)

 




Lemon Honey Rosemary Ham And Veggies

In case you read this post about my glaze I made for ham steak and thought my cooking couldn’t get lazier… here I am to prove you wrong. I included veggies in this recipe so I didn’t have to cook them separately. All I used was:

  • Honey
  • Lemon Rosemary Seasoning
  • Ham Steak
  • Bag of Cauliflower and Broccoli

I preheated the oven to 350, and dumped the veggies into a casserole dish, sprinkling them with lemon rosemary seasoning. Then I put the ham on top and squirted a bit of honey on the ham, spreading it evenly on the top of the steak. Sprinkled the ham with the same seasoning and baked it for 15-20 minutes. Then I stirred the veggies, flipped the ham, and covered the other side with honey and lemon rosemary seasoning. Baked another 15-20 minutes. All done.




Name of the Day: Winifred

I don’t think there’s any hope of selling this name to Peter, I’ve brought it up in the past. But I think it’s beautiful and adorable, one of my very very favorites! So, I’m going to try.

Derived from Gwenfrewi, it means blessed peace or reconciliation. I love the nicknames Winnie, Freddie or just Win or Fred! It has a lot of pop culture associations including characters in Hocus Pocus, Tuck Everlasting, Angel, Once Upon A Mattress, Mary Poppins, Jungle Book, and more. Through these associations, it is a name most are familiar with, though probably most don’t personally know a Winifred.

According to the legend of Saint Winifred, when Winifred decided to become a nun she had a suitor. When she told him of her choice, he decapitated her. Of course, her head was reattached, her attacker swallowed by the ground and she went on to do lots of great deeds. This tale makes her the patron saint of unwanted advances… which I think is pretty powerful!

Winifred Brunton was an artist known best for the pieces she made depicting Egyptian pharaohs. This is because her and her husband went on archaeological digs and she based her art of the ruins that they found, making her artwork more realistic than anything seen before on the subject.

Winifred Atwell was a pianist from Trinidad that had great success in the UK and Australia. She was without question the most successful pianist of her time, which is all the more impressive considering she was a black woman. Unfortunately for us in the states, she was never well known here. She was supposed to appear on the Ed Sullivan show, but producers thought the audience would be confused by a British sounding black woman and never recorded the segment (though she did fly in for it). Despite this, Winifred claimed to have not suffered from racism in her own life, but was very outspoken about the issue in society. Particularly, she spoke about the treatment of the aborigines in Australia, the place she called home later in life. She also donated her time and talents to charity concerts to help the needy and orphanages.

Winifred Maxwell was an aristocrat who saved her husband from the death sentence. The guards let her in to say goodbye on the night before his execution, she dressed him in woman’s clothing and escaped. I think that tale is a great example of bravery and love!

Other famous Winifreds include a silent film star, the first woman to earn a PhD in mathematics, several writers, one of the founders of modern speech therapy, educators, politicians and more. It’s a magical name, and if you’re reading this and considering naming your daughter Winifred, please do it!




Stupid Things I Feel Guilty About

My whole life I’ve been really critical of myself. I blame myself for things far too often and for far too long. And then I became a Mom, and now there are two little babies I love more than anything who are influenced by every action and decision I make… holy, pressure!

You can’t stop mom guilt completely. By the end of the day I’ve probably lost my temper at one or both of the kids multiple times, which I will beat myself up for as I try to sleep. I’ll constantly question if I’m feeding them a balanced enough diet. The list goes on and on… and to an extent it’s a good thing. I’m glad I’m conscious about what I feed them and being patient with them. But there are some things I feel guilty about that are so ridiculous. And I need to let them go. They include:

  • Not enjoying my pregnancies
  • Not having them naturally
  • Not staying home with Lucille in her first year
  • Not sending them to daycare to get better socialized
  • Not pumping enough when I returned to work for Lucille to be exclusively breastfed
  • Not trying harder to get my breastmilk supply back when I got pregnant with Lennon and Lucille was only 8 months old
  • Breastfeeding Lennon so much that he still depends on it for comfort at 20 months old
  • Spending too much money on clothes for Lucille as some outfits only get worn a couple times
  • Not spending hardly and money on clothes for Lennon and letting him live in hand me downs from my bff’s 3 boys and my sister’s two boys (it’s a ridiculous amount of hand me downs!!! I’m so grateful!)
  • Not enrolling them in swim class the past several months
  • Not spending enough time with them on learning activities
  • Not having a nice kitchen that we can enjoy better as a family

As you may have noticed, many of these items directly contradict other items. I feel guilty about sending Lucille to daycare and guilty about taking her out… that doesn’t make sense! Sure, it’d be great to send them a few hours a couple days a week, for social interaction, so they’re used to being away from me, so I can get stuff accomplished… but it’s not a financial possibility right now, nor is a new kitchen. Some day we’ll get a new kitchen and we can bake and cook together more often, it’s a super high priority of mine and the reason I still work part time, so that we can afford the project someday… but we’re not there yet. That reminds me of two more things I feel guilty about:

  • Spending too much time working during the day instead of playing with them
  • Not working more so we have more money

Again, contradictions! We can’t have it all. We just need to do the best we can and feel confident that it’s enough. Because it is.  Do I wish Lucille and I worked on her numbers more? Yes, I do. But Lennon gets bored and throws any learning tools we have and it just doesn’t happen.. and at this age, I think it’s more important that her and her brother are both having fun. What’s the worst that’ll happen? She could get to pre-school knowing less than the rest of the class… yeah, that would stink. But she’ll learn once she’s in pre-school, surrounded by kids her age who are ready to learn. In the end, it’ll be fine.

And feeling guilty about not enjoying my pregnancies like some women do… why? I don’t think my kids will hold it against me when they find out I didn’t like pregnancy. I think they’ll understand that it’s hard to enjoy yourself when you’re puking several times a day for 9 months. (For the record there were things I loved about pregnancy, like feeling baby kicks and baby hiccups. There was just so much I didn’t enjoy that over all it wasn’t my favorite and is something I’m not looking forward to repeating.)

So there it is, the things I’m letting go of, not letting myself feel any more negative emotions towards. And I’m sure there will be a sequel to this post, because guilt isn’t something you should collect. It’s something you should learn from and then set free.




Buffalo Chicken Salad

1st of all, I never want to have salad as a main course. If I’m being honest, I usually don’t even want salad as an appetizer. But that’s largely because of my hatred for iceberg lettuce… still, even with romaine or spinach, it’s unlike me to make salad into a meal. But I went a little crazy buying veggies so I thought I’d try it one night. Peter didn’t seem excited and I wasn’t either. But surprisingly both of us loved it and Peter agreed I need to make this dinner more often. I used:

8 oz fresh romaine lettuce

1 peeled and cubed cucumber

1 cubed red pepper

1 cubed tomato

4 oz cubed mozzarella cheese

3/4 pound of cubed chicken

a couple squirts of Sweet Baby Ray’s Creamy Buffalo Dipping Sauce

I squirted the dipping sauce into a frying pan and cooked the chicken in it. Combined everything else in a bowl and then dumped the chicken and tiny bit of extra sauce right in. I thought about adding some dressing, but honestly, it was totally unnecessary. And this made SO MUCH salad. We had a lot leftover. So feel free to cut back the amounts I used… or just feed more people with it.

I think my next family function I’m going to volunteer to make this and people can eat it as an appetizer. Yum!