Nutrition in Meal Planning

Monday kinda got me on a nutrition kick. Before I got pregnant I was actually really good at tracking my food. We had trouble conceiving and my doctor told me if I lost weight, it would be easier. At the beginning of 2015, I was 170 pounds (I’m 5’4″) and wore a medium/size 8. I wasn’t huge but, that was the biggest I’d ever been. After my doctor told me loosing weight would be best, I took to it with vigor. Difficulty conceiving was completely out of my hands but, my weight – I could control that. My type A-ness was completely stoked. In April, I put myself on 1500 calories a day which was the lowest (according to somewhere on the internet) I should go. I am dead set against doing diets that restrict what you can and can’t have because I know I would fail in a minute if I couldn’t have potatoes or chocolate milk or things like that. So, I allowed myself to have anything I wanted, but if I ran out of calories it sucked to be me. Anyways, about halfway through the year, I had to switch doctors (I graduated college and could no longer see one of the schools doctors). He flat out told me that 1500 calories was too high for me if I wanted to lose substantial weight and told me to go down to 1200. (Don’t freak out anyone! It’s because I have PCOS which basically makes it difficult for my body to transfer food into energy and instead just stores it. I need less food than a normal person). I dropped down to 1200 calories. For those of you who have never eaten that few calories before, it isn’t a lot and you really have to plan your food well to not end up eating celery for dinner. So, for a couple months, I planned every individual meal and snack for the day and how they related to the other meals so I wouldn’t go hungry. I had all the foods listed and all of their calories next to them. I lost 25 pounds between April and October (when I found out I was pregnant). I lost another 5 pounds the first month I knew I was pregnant because I couldn’t eat anything. Fast forward to my last doctor’s appointment and my doctor tells me this: ‘So, you didn’t gain almost any weight your first trimester so this is okay but, this past month you gained 8 pounds. You don’t want to continue doing that.’

Oops. 

The past couple of weeks, I’ve really been trying to scale back my eating and I aim for 1800-2000 calories. (Side note: When you’re pregnant, you should add about 300 calories to what your body normally needs. When non-pregnant 1500 calories had me loosing a little weight so, I aim for a little above 1800. Everyone is different though so, ask your doctor!). As, I was reviewing nutrition information for my article on Monday, I realized I probably wasn’t getting all the nutrients me or Little C needs. So, I consulted the handy-dandy MyPlate. Thanks government! I mixed the recommendations of how many servings of each food group I need for someone my age/weight/height that isn’t pregnant vs that is (hence why they are optional). The reason I did this is because, MyPlate decided that I needed 2400 calories as a pregnant woman. Which might be true normally but, definitely isn’t for me.

Anyways, after that long rambling explanation, here is what I came up with:

I meal plan by two weeks, which is why there are two checkboxes under each day of the week.When I meal plan, I have the chart printed and check the boxes as I assign food to each day. I also check calories as I go along. I use My Fitness Pal (non-affiliated link, I just love them so much, and it’s free) to check calories for each food item.

I will post the full 2 week menu on Friday!

  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Fruit 1
Fruit 2
Vegetable 1
Vegetable 2
Vegetable 3
Grain 1
Grain 2
Grain 3
Grain 4
Grain 5
Grain 6
Grain 7 (opt)
Grain 8 (opt)
Protein 1
Protein 2
Protein 3
Protein 4
Protein 5
Protein 6
Dairy 1
Dairy 2
Dairy 3

 

2 Servings of fruit:

  • 1 cup raw fruit
  • ½ cup dried fruit
  • 1 cup 100% fruit juice

2.5 – 3 Servings Vegetables

  • 1 cup raw/cooked veggies
  • 2 cups leafy salad greens

6 – 8 servings Grains

  • 1 slice of bread
  • ½ cup of cooked rice/pasta/cereal
  • ½ cup cooked Oatmeal

5.5 – 6.5 Servings Protein

  • 1 oz meat
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • ¼ cup beans

3 Servings dairy

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 5 oz cheese

How do you make sure you eat healthily?

xoxo,

Kels

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Nutrition in Young Children

I often write articles for NAFCC (The National Association for Family Child Care). Here is the article I wrote for this month’s featured standard (NAFCC requires their accredited providers to meet certain standards to be accredited with them).

4.73 The provider serves nutritious and sufficient food following Child and Adult Care Food Program guidelines. If parents bring food, the provider assures that it is nutritious or supplements it.

Young children’s stomachs are only about the size of their fists. This is why small but frequent feedings work best. Try to feed your toddler ever 3 or so hours. A child’s body uses nutrients from food to function properly throughout the day. Children that are fed a healthy diet can learn, grow, and play!

Some of the benefits of good nutrition in children are:

  • A healthy weight for their height
  • Mental well-being
  • Ability to concentrate
  • Strong bones and muscles
  • Good energy levels
  • The ability to fight off sickness and disease
  • Easier recovery from illness or injury
  • Lower risk of type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, joint problems, breathing problems, and obesity

Remember that offering nutritious food is not enough. It is important to encourage learning about good nutrition so, that older children can learn to make good decisions on their own.

Tips for encouraging healthy learning:

  • Offer a variety of healthy foods so children don’t see healthy foods as boring foods.
  • Expect children to like new foods but, don’t be discouraged if they don’t. It takes multiple tries for children to adjust to the texture and taste of new foods.
  • Encourage children to eat slowly and enjoy their food.
  • Allow the children to determine how much they eat. Encourage them to listen to their bodies and when their bodies tell them they are full.
  • Avoid using food as a reward or a punishment.
  • Use real food labels in imaginary play areas. Encourage and teach older children to read labels.
  • Encourage children to safely help prepare health meals and snacks.

While children may spend a great deal of time in your care, parents have a huge impact on the health of their children. Encourage parents to continue offering healthy choices at home. Make sure to offer them a menu so they can plan their meals  and supplement the nutrients the child is already getting in your care. Offer parents a copy of the CACFP Meal Pattern. This offers a simplified checklist for busy parents to make sure they are providing all the food groups their child needs.

The above tips are not all inclusive.  After all, there are Many Right Ways! Find your own creative ways to encourage children to eat healthily and teach them about the importance of good nutrition.

For more helpful information conduct your own internet search or visit the sites listed below.

http://healthymeals.nal.usda.gov/cacfp-wellness-resources-child-care-providers

http://www.choosemyplate.gov/

http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/kids/eating-nutrition/healthy-eating/nutrition-healthy-eating-for-kids.html

Resources:

Chan, By Amanda. “10 Ways to Promote Kids’ Healthy Eating Habits.”LiveScience. TechMedia Network, 22 Sept. 2011. Web. 22 Feb. 2016. <http://www.livescience.com/35876-kids-healthy-eating-tips.html>.

Editorial Staff. “Nutrition: Healthy Eating for Kids.” Nutrition: Healthy Eating for Kids. American Academy of Family Physicians, Mar. 2015. Web. 22 Feb. 2016. <http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/kids/eating-nutrition/healthy-eating/nutrition-healthy-eating-for-kids.html>.

“Healthy Eating for Kids.” Healthy Eating for Kids. Memiah Limited, 2016. Web. 22 Feb. 2016. <http://www.nutritionist-resource.org.uk/content/healthy-eating-for-kids.html>.

Photo Credit: Bruce Tuten

My Favorite Quotes

Sometimes, you read something that changes your life. It’s either because they are harsh realities or because they are the way I want to live. All of these quotes made a profound impact on the way I see the world and really gave me cause to think:

Best advice anyone could give. CUTE
From the movie “This Means War”

 

And finally, my favorite, because it is basically my life’s motto. If I can’t accomplish something it’s because I don’t want it enough.
xoxo,
Kels

The One Chore Rule

I won’t pretend to be an expert on marriage or even to have lots of experience in it. Mr. B and I have only been married for a year and a half. Sometimes its been hard, but, mostly it is just awesome. I love being married. We talked a lot and did a lot of preparation before we were wed. I took three different marriage prep classes at BYU, one was from a religious perspective to count as a religion credit, one was from a secular perspective for my major, and the third was an extra free mini-course that BYU offered for engaged couples. Mr. B took the last one with me. It had strong religious undertones (it’s BYU y’all) but, mostly focused on the day to day of actual marriage. I think that class helped us the most but, that might have been because we took it together. I highly recommend taking a marriage preparation class together. It was so fun and a huge help. Anyways, as you can tell we did a lot of preparation and really focused on giving ourselves a solid start beyond just our love for each other.

One of the things we decided back during our engagement period was a funny little rule that I’d never heard of anyone doing before. This rule is that there is one chore we could choose that we didn’t have to do for the entirety of our marriage. I chose never taking out the trash and Mr. B chose never doing the dishes. In full disclosure, we haven’t exactly followed this. I take out the bathroom trash a couple of times and Mr. B has done a couple of dishes. Since I’ve been pregnant, he’s washed all the Tupperware containers that we’ve accidentally let get moldy and he also did the dishes three times during my first trimester when I could not stand the smell.

However, I think the rule has been very helpful mostly because we knew what each others least favorite chore was from the get go. I think the whole point of the rule is that it has really helped us be more aware of what the other hates doing and, in turn, realizing best where we can serve one another.

How did you prepare for your marriage?

xoxo,

Kels

 

Photo Credit: Dru Kelly

Baby Necessities on a Budget: Pre-Baby

Now, this may seem a little silly to do but, I love before and afters! I’ve never had a child though, in full disclosure, I currently work in the child care industry, I’ve nannied, and I’ve babysat (a lot). So, I do have experience with children. I’m also an extreme researcher (mostly because I am ridiculously indecisive). With that combo, I am pretty confident that I have a decent list. No guarantees though. I’ll make a Post-Baby list a couple months AFTER Little C is born too. I’m interested to see how my list changes.

So, without further ado (hey, I had to rhyme), here is my list of baby necessities for the first six months (and what we are going to buy/have bought):

  1. Convertible Crib & Mattress: Sniglar Crib ($79, Ikea) + Vyssa Sloa Mattress ($49.99, Ikea) – Pretty obvious why we need a crib and mattress. The baby needs somewhere to sleep. We considered just getting a pack n’ play but, for the same price we can get an Ikea crib! We went to Ikea and looked at the different cribs. The crib is a little too low for Mr. B (who is 6’2″) but, he said that was fine for the price difference. It is a convertible crib from basinettish (pictured below), to crib (with the bottom lowered), to toddler bed (with the side removed). We also felt the mattress while we were there. You really want a firm mattress for safe sleep when it comes to babies. I liked how firm the Sloa was. It’s not the cheapest they have but, I think it will be safest for Little C.                                                                                             SNIGLAR Crib IKEA The bed base can be placed at two different heights.VYSSA SLÖA Mattress for crib IKEA
  2. Car Seat: Britax USA Boulevard ClickTight Convertible Car Seat, Metro ($270, Amazon) – Another necessity that is pretty obvious. Our hospital (and most hospitals in the US, I think) require you to have a properly installed car seat before you can take the baby from the hospital (not that I would want Little C in the car without a car seat anyway). We bought ours during Black Friday for $270, it was $50 off at the time. It has since dropped to $277 so, we still got it for cheaper (plus one of our rewards credit cards was doing 5% back on all Amazon purchases that month so, we got 5% back too). A car seat isn’t something I was willing to skimp on. The Britax ClickTight series has great safety ratings though it is a little heavy. We decided we didn’t want an infant car seat for a couple of reasons. Firstly, that would be an extra cost because we’d have to buy two car seats (no thanks). Secondly, I think it would be tempting to leave the baby in it for extended periods of time when we were out somewhere like church or the doctor’s office. This isn’t good for the baby. Thirdly (and probably the biggest reason), I hate infant car seats. They are always too heavy for me to carry (which they should be with all the padding and safety materials) and they hit me over and over again in the knees. I can’t stand them. I’d rather take the baby out and carry him.                                                                                                              Britax USA Boulevard ClickTight Convertible Car Seat, Metro
  3. Waterproof Mattress Pad (x2): Sealy Waterproof Mattress Cover, 2 pack ($22.81, Amazon) – We chose these pads because they were the cheapest with the best review. Just a warning: There were a bunch of mattress pads claiming they reduce SIDS. THIS IS NOT TRUE. SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) by, definition does not have a knowable cause. There are ways to statistically lower the chances of SIDS but, as the last point in the linked to article points out there is zero evidence to support any products that claim to reduce SIDS (on the flip side, if you want to buy a product despite the fact that it doesn’t reduce SIDS, go for it). Anyway, off my soapbox. We chose two mattress pads because I red this tip online somewhere, that if you layer crib sheet, mattress pad, crib sheet, and mattress pad, you won’t have to worry about a middle of the night blow out. You just take off the first layer and voila you already have a second layer! Given how frequently we’ll be doing laundry with cloth diapers, I doubt we’ll need more than two.Sealy Waterproof Mattress Cover, White, 2 Pack
  4. Crib Sheet (x2): Cosco Jersey Sheet, yellow ($6, Kid to Kid [the children’s consignment store nearby]) and American Baby Company 100% Cotton Value Jersey Knit Crib Sheet, Celery ($9.63, Amazon) – See above why we are getting 2 sheets. We already have the first sheet and the second sheet isn’t picked for any other reason than it is in our colors (green, yellow, and beige) and the reviews said they were soft. We’ll keep our eyes peeled as we shop for a better deal though.
  5. Bouncer: We got a bouncer as a gift for Christmas. We really don’t have room in our apartment for a swing which would have been the other option.
  6. Carrier: DIY Moby ($6, Fabric Center) – As mentioned above, I hate baby car seats but, I still need a way to carry the baby with my hands free. I decided $40 for a long strip of fabric was way too expensive, so, I made one. (Cameo from the teddy bear’s ear). Green is Mr. B’s favorite color and it just so happens to look great on me too so, that is the color we chose.DIY Moby Baby Carrier
  7. Cloth Diapers ($300-400, Amazon, Ebay, Kid to Kid). I’ll talk more about cloth diapers in another post(s) because I can go on for days about cloth diapers. But, to keep it simple here, we bought a set of 24 used newborn AIOs for $100 on ebay and have been scouting for deals for one size diapers since we found out I was pregnant. We spent $20 on one AIO but the rest have been under $12. We currently have 3 All-in-One diapers, 2 pocket diapers, 7 All-in-Twos diapers in the one size (which is usually about 10 – 35 pounds). Those total another $120 spent. Most sites recommend 18-20 diapers for one size diapers. We are waiting to see which diapers we like most before we purchase the rest of our stash.
  8. Cloth Diaper Accessories: EcoAble Large Wet Bag (x2, $19.99 each, Amazon) and Damero Cute Travel Baby Wet and Dry Cloth Diaper Organizer Bag ($6.99, Amazon) – look how cute that pattern is!) Kirkland Flushable Wipes ($12, Costco). So, we are getting two large wet bags (which hold the diapers between changes and getting washed) for at home, that way we can switch them off while they are getting washed. The medium wet bag is for the diaper bag. We’ll use cloth wipes (made from fabric scraps I have laying about) for number ones and flushable wipes for number twos.                      Large Hanging Wet Dry Bag for Baby Cloth Diapers or Laundry (Yellow) Damero Cute Travel Baby Wet and Dry Cloth Diaper Organizer Bag (Medium, Animals)
  9. Clothes: We expect to get most of Little C’s clothes from the baby shower or our parents. People love buying baby clothes. We want at least 5-6 onesies/footie (depending on the time of year) in each size and two hats. We already have a bunting for when it gets colder (thanks mom!). We also want 2-3 sleepers for when he grows out of his swaddles (see below). He’ll also have 2 Sunday church outfits and a couple pairs of socks. Will he have more clothes than this? Probably. Like I said, people love buying baby clothes (including me).
  10. Baby Wash: Johnson’s Natural Head-to-Toe Foaming Baby Wash ($7.99, Target). This is not the cheapest body wash there is but, I’m a little more comfortable with the ingredients in this one, however, if we find we need to cut back, we’ll go with the non-natural Johnson’s baby wash. Johnson’s Natural Head-to-Toe Foaming Baby Wash - 18 oz.
  11. Coconut Oil ($10, Costco) – This will be used for diaper cream, as it is cloth diaper safe, and baby lotion. I’m not sure how to estimate the cost for this one because we have coconut oil as a staple in the house already. I estimate about $10 because a little goes a LONG way.
  12. Gentle Washcloth – My dad sent us a set of like 20 organic bamboo washcloths as soon as he found out we were pregnant. I don’t think we’ll need 20 (maybe we’ll use some as wipes) but, they are really soft and will be great for washing the baby!
  13. Swaddlers (x2): Summer Infant SwaddleMe 2 Pack 100% Organic Adjustable Infant Wrap, 7-14 Lbs, Small-Medium, Ivory/Green ($19.36 for 2, Amazon). I am really nervous about swaddling myself because you can do it so wrong and create some bad developmental problems for your child’s hips. Also, I think it is probably easier for Little C to get out of a swaddle I made than a swaddle made by the Swaddlemes. So, I think it is worth it to have these but, if you know how to swaddle go for receiving blankets. Summer Infant SwaddleMe 2 Pack 100% Organic Adjustable Infant Wrap, 7-14 Lbs, Small-Medium, Ivory/Green
  14. Health Kit: The First Years American Red Cross Baby Healthcare And Grooming Kit ($13.37, Amazon). Another self-explanatory necessity. I mostly chose this kit for the nail clippers, nasal aspirator, and medicine dispenser. We might buy those separately if we can find a good price.  If we can afford to buy an ear thermometer, like this, we’ll buy one of those too. The First Years American Red Cross Baby Healthcare And Grooming Kit
  15. Bottle (x2, free!) and Pacifier (x4): As you might’ve seen from my Amazon and Target gift box/bag, I got a free bottle in each. Since I will be at home and hopefully breast feeding, we won’t need that many bottles but, I (and Mr.B) still want Mr. B to have some opportunities to bond with Little C via feeding. Little C will also have to take the bottle when he’s babysat! Little C will also need Phillips Avent Soothie Pacifier ($3.84 for 2, Amazon) if he takes pacifiers. I’ll start with 2 but, with pacifiers being the size of keys, I’ll most likely loose them everywhere.
  16. Breast Pump: Hopefully, my insurance will cover an electric breast pump but, I haven’t called yet to check. If it doesn’t I’ll get the Philips Avent Manual Comfort Breast Pump ($25.99, Amazon). A manual pump is more of a hassle than an electric pump but, I can deal with that for a quarter of the price and for the amount that I will be pumping (hopefully not very much!). Philips Avent Manual Comfort Breast Pump
  17. Burp Rags: Gerber 10 Pack Prefold Birdseye Diaper, White ($15.99, Amazon). I’ve heard that while these are AWFUL cloth diapers, they are great for burp rags!
  18. Doggie Seatbelt: Kra-mar Roadie Dog Seatbelt (Petlife), Large ($34.10, Amazon). Now, I know this won’t be a need for everyone (or even most people) but, for me it was an absolute must. Firstly, how safe is that baby car seat if Wheatley flies around the car and hits Little C (and mom and dad) multiple times in a car wreck. The answer: not. Secondly, Wheatley should be safe and I should’ve bought him a seat belt a long time ago. Thirdly, Wheatley’s favorite spot in the car is standing in the middle of the backseat so he can look out the front window. Do you know where the baby’s car seat is safest? The middle of the backseat. Wheatley is going to be trying to climb all over Little C if I let him. But, I don’t want to let him so the seatbelt will strap him onto one of the side seats.                   Kra-mar Roadie Dog Seatbelt (Petlife) Large - Size: Large
  19. Humidifier (by wintertime): Mistmate Ultrasonic Hum White ($27.49, Target). It gets dry in Utah. Really dry. Honestly, I don’t know why we don’t have a humidifier already because, I get headaches from the dryness. This is not necessarily a need but, I worry that if I’m uncomfortable Little C will be too, which will result in me being even more uncomfortable (baby screaming while I already have a headache? I’ll try to avoid that as much as possible).
  20. Diaper Bag: Classic Plaid Multifunction Large Capacity Hand Bag Shoulder Bag Backpack Baby Diaper Baby Care Product (Blue) ($30.47). I searched for hours for a diaper bag that wasn’t too expensive ($100+ for a bag, heck no!), that was stylish enough for me to enjoy wearing, and that Mr. B could wear without any embarrassment. I finally came to this bag and I LOVE it. It is stylish, has three ways to wear it (including a backpack way for Mr. B), and has lots of organization pockets. Plus, it has great reviews. I honestly cannot wait to get this bag.

Classic Plaid Multifunction Large Capacity Hand Bag Shoulder Bag Backpack Baby Diaper Baby Care Product (Blue)

Bonus: Before Little C starts crawling, I’ll need to get some furniture and TV straps, any good suggestions for apartment dwellers?

Hope this list helped. What’s on your list?

xoxo,

Kels

Roundup: Baby DIYs you can do BEFORE you find out the gender

I don’t know about you but, for me I wanted to start making and buying things for Little C (or Little Lamb as he was called then) as SOON as I found out I was pregnant. I was so excited! A lot of the DIYs running amok on the internet are for clothes but, of course I didn’t know yet if I needed to make headbows (Little baby girls don’t have hair to put bows in, so they’re headbows, not hair bows – Mr B) or bowties (team bowtie!), so, instead I have made a list of DIYs you can make before you know lad or lass and before you even choose nursery colors! So, without further ado:

Old McDonald Puppets

Make one or make all or make one a month to measure your pregnancy!

Taggie Bean Bag

I actually made one of these for my nephew before he was born and he LOVES it. I filled mine with rice instead of beans, because that’s what we had on hand.

Baby Countdown

This one is more for the parents but, it is oh so cute!DIY Countdown to Baby Blocks

Happy Stacker

Instead of hard plastic and wood you can make a stacker out of fabric!Happy stacker

Foam Blocks

Once again, softer than wooden or plastic blocks and won’t freak out the dog or hurt me when Little C flings them across the room.DSC_0002

Beach Ball

If you can’t sense a pattern, I like things that babies can throw without worrying about it hurting. Gotta work up those throwing muscles!

Nessie Stuffed Animal

Just about any stuffed animal would work on this list but, I absolutely loved Nessie and how she is big enough to ride when baby gets bigger!

 

What DIYs are you making for your baby? I’m working on a green romper, then a stuffed spaceship after that! Happy crafting,

xoxo,

Kels

Bi-Weekly Meal Plan: 2/13/16 – 2/26/16

Mr. B and I sit down every other week and meal plan. If we didn’t meal plan, we would fall apart at the grocery store. We would probably spend twice what we could afford and then go out to eat anyways. I have no idea how people live without a meal plan. Sometimes, we won’t eat everything that is in our meal plan. We get lazy and will eat ramen or cans of soup with grilled cheese or we’ll make pancakes. Or we’ll be so easy that we end up eating pretzels and fruit for dinner (hey, don’t judge!). Anyways, we try to eat everything on our menu, though we’ll often rearrange things throughout the week depending on our mood.

So, how do we plan? First, we run through a brief overview of food we have left in the pantry, fridge, and freezer that we need to use. This could be a mental overview or we might actually go and look. This week, we had leftover ham, so, you’ll see that in the menu. Then we look over the Smith’s ad and see if there are any good sales. Cauliflower and steak are both on sale and you’ll see them in the menu (for a lovely Valentine’s dinner). Then we set date night dates for once a week (we are not having one the first week because we are going to my niece’s blessing that weekend and so, we’ll be spending lots of money on that). Then we set 2 days of vegetarian meals each week (to save money on the price of meat and to remind us we don’t need meat everyday). Then we fill in the rest of the week!

It takes us a couple of hours but, that’s usually because we get distracted and I am a picky eater and say no to everything (She really does. She never lets me have anything good! – Mr B).

So, here is our meal plan:

Saturday –  Fried Perogies p. 132 – 133 (Half Recipe, add half cup of diced green onion) serve with fried spam 

Sunday – Steak and Roasted Cauliflower (Mr. B makes the Steaks, he gets to do whatever he wants) 

Monday – Cheese Quesadillas w/ Sour Cream (Vegetarian)

Tuesday- One Skillet Chicken with Lemon Garlic Cream Sauce and Shell Pasta (sub heavy cream for milk and butter)

Wednesday – Potato Soup *Vegetarian

Thursday – Basic Baked Chicken Breast and Orzo 

Friday – Chicken Cordon Bleu Pockets  *Uses ham

Saturday – With the Family

Sunday – With the Family or On the Road

Monday – Black Bean/Beef Hamburgers and frozen french fries  

Tuesday – Tacos

Wednesday – Grilled Cheese and Soup *Vegetarian

Thursday- Movie Night – DEADPOOL – dinner is popcorn (yeah, healthy, I know)

Friday – Broccoli, Rice, and Cheese (This recipe is exactly as it sounds and it is one of our favorites) *Vegetarian

There you have it! We are hoping we’ll spend under $100 for these two weeks of groceries. Let’s see if we do it!

xoxo,

Kels

Photo Credit: Seattle Municipal Archives

Amazon Welcome Baby Giftbox Haul

So, last week I did my Haul of Target’s Welcome Baby Giftbag. This week I’ll do my Amazon haul. Amazon will send you the box for free for registering with them. I believe you have to complete your registry before they will send the box but, we were planning on registering with Amazon anyway so, it wasn’t a hassle. We registered with Amazon for our wedding and absolutely loved it!

Reasons we love registering with Amazon:

  • You can add from any site. The most disappointing thing for us, when registering for our wedding, is that Ikea didn’t have a registry opportunity (we really like Ikea). But, with Amazon we could add anything from their website to our registry! Same thing for a baby. The crib and mattress we’ve registered for are from Ikea. We also got to register for a lot of cloth diapers from Kelley’s Closet and Nikki’s Diapers, which was awesome.
  • If it is cheaper to buy on Amazon, Amazon will tell you and suggest registering for that item through Amazon instead. So, if I registered for a Chicco stroller from Buy Buy Baby an it was cheaper at Amazon, they’d point that out to me. I love saving money for me and my family.
  • It lets us put notes. This is one of my favorite features. I can make a note on any item of what color or size I’d prefer. This is important for something like our diaper bag. The diaper bag we registered for is a Burberry print with colored accents. We want the one with blue accents because we aren’t getting a second diaper bag for Mr. B. We chose the bag because it was more gender neutral. It isn’t so gender neutral with pink accents. I also used this because I registered for one newborn diaper (we got the rest we need on eBay for a great price). However, I wanted a white diaper to bless little C in. We registered for the diaper and explained we only needed one and we need it in white for his blessing.
  • Amazon’s checklist. Amazon makes an awesome little checklist for you to go through so you don’t forget to register for anything! Which, pregnant ladies, we all know is important with #pregnancybrain!

Anyways, on to the point of this post, which is to tell you about my Amazon Baby Box!

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    The Box: Oooohhh Ahhh, box. The only thing to note is that Chicco didn’t actually include anything in the box. I’m guessing they sponsor shipping? Way to go Chicco. Thanks for shipping me stuff.

  2. 3 Samples: Babyganics Lotion, Burt’s Bees Babywash, Burt’s Bees Renewal Serum (form mom). The Babyganics lotion is the same I had in the target giftbag. I’m really exited for it actually because the sample is kind of small so, two of them will actually give me an idea if I like it for my baby or not. I tried it on myself and thought it was good. I’m really excited for the Burt’s Bees Babywash! I love Burt’s Bees and I would love to use their whole baby line but, it is a lot more expensive than Johnson and Johnson. However, this sample gives me enough that I might just fall in love with it and decide it is worth the splurge (or I might hate it, I’ll let you know). The Burt’s Bees Renewal Serum is to “[h]elp restore the appearance of your skin’s smooth, firm, texture with powerful, natural anti-aging ingredients.” It’s supposed to be for mom. This was my least favorite part of the box. I feel enough like a bloated chimpanzee without Amazon including something that makes me feel like I need to improve my looks more. (That is probably my oversensitive pregnancy mind speaking though).
  3. Enfamil Supplementing Formula Sample: In the box are 4 samples, each has enough for a 4 oz bottle. It can be used from 0 to 12 months and is specifically for supplementing. It will be interesting to try. Mr. B will probably use the samples but, hopefully we won’t have to supplement.
  4. Avent Breastpad Sample and Booklet: Disposable breastpads are great and I will probably keep them in the diaper bag for emergencies (I plan on using reusable pads). I also liked the booklet they included. I only skimmed the first couple of pages but, it had some really helpful information!
  5. Avent Bottle: 2nd bottle (I received one in the target bag)! I don’t know if I’ll have to even buy a bottle. I’ll be at home most of the time and I feel like two bottles is sufficient for Little C’s feedings with Mr. B if we keep up on washing them.
  6. MAM Pacifier: I received one of these in the Target giftbag as well but, this one doesn’t have a little bunny on it. But I think it’s important to have multiple pacifiers if you’re going to use them (which we plan on doing). With my luck I’ll need at least 10 because I loose everything that is the size of my phone or smaller.
  7. Not Pictured (sorry, I forgot!): Amazon Sensitive Baby Wipes 80 count: I haven’t opened them because I don’t want them to dry out before Little C makes an appearance but, they are an 80 count! That isn’t a little sample! That’s substantial. The package is about 3″x 7″. I also like that they are made in the USA.

So, there is everything I got in my box! What did you get in yours?

xoxo,

Kels

Sister Recipes: Mexican Chicken and Baked Mexican Chicken Tacos

Sister Recipes is a series I want to start with the goal of making more sister recipes. So, what is a sister recipe? Well it is a meal planning tactic where you use the first meal’s leftovers to make the second meal. We see a lot of sister recipes around thanksgiving time when everyone is trying to figure out what in the world to do with that leftover turkey but, we can use it the rest of the year to meal plan.

This weeks meal plan of sister recipes was an accident (and actually is what spurred this series). We made Crockpot Mexican Chicken and had taquitos (with plain chicken) planned and while I ate dinner I suddenly had a lightbulb that this chicken would taste fabulous in taquitos. And it does (well taquito-like tacos anyway).

Here is the link to the first recipe:

Mexican Chicken and Rice

http://www.carlsbadcravings.com/easy-slow-cooker-shredded-mexican-chicken-recipe/ (we didn’t use chipotle chili pepper  or liquid smoke and it still turned out fabulously). The first night we served the chicken over rice with some cheese. I loved it but, Mr. B said it was only ‘okay.’

The second recipe is: Baked Mexican Chicken Tacos

Baked Mexican Chicken Tacos

1.5 cups Mexican Chicken (see above)

3 oz Cream Cheese

1/4 cup sour cream

1/2 cup shredded mozzerella

12 6 inch corn tortillas

Sour Cream, Refried Beans, and/or Guacamole for serving

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 F. Mix everything but the tortillas together to make the filling. Microwave tortillas for 20 seconds. Divide filling evenly between tortillas and roll up. Lay rolled tortillas, opening side down, on a greased baking sheet. Cook for 15 minutes.

The second recipe is taquito inspired but, I can never manage to make my taquitos stay rolled… oh well.

xoxo,

Kels

 

5 ways to cope with being Type A

Type A

Photo Credit (w/edits): Sodanie Chea

“Type A individuals [are] ambitious, rigidly organized, highly status-conscious, sensitive, impatient, take on more than they can handle, want other people to get to the point, anxious, proactive, and concerned with time management. People with Type A personalities are often high-achieving “workaholics”, push themselves with deadlines, and hate both delays and ambivalence.” (Wikipedia)

The only things in that paragraph that don’t describe me are: ambitious, highly status-conscious, and workaholic. Sometimes, I get disorganized but, then I’ll go on a rampage (that gracious Mr. B calls my stress cleaning week) and reorganize the apartment top to bottom.

If you’re type A you know (and if you read that description you should be able to tell) that being type A is rather stressful. And just for the record, telling me (or any type A person) to take a chill-pill or something stupid like that is more likely to make us want to tear your head off then relax.

However, I do recognize that I need to relax and reign in my Type A personalities otherwise people, including myself at some points, will probably hate me.

Here is how I deal:

  1. I have up to 3 things I’m allowed to care about. That is, for any large activity (like a wedding or a birthday party I’m planning), I have to choose 3 things that I will make absolutely perfect and the other things I can only passively plan for. For example, at our wedding I choose three things I wanted and I didn’t have to compromise on them and I could perfect them to my choosing. These were the three things I chose: My husband will wear a seer sucker suit, I will get a sunflower bouquet, and there will be no tomatoes at my wedding. Sometimes, I choose only one or two things if they are large. When we moved to this new apartment I chose to make a chart for our kitchen. I had everything planned out for what went in each cupboard, on each shelf, on each side. I had a diagram of the entire kitchen. I also made a floor plan of where all the furniture would go. After that I forced myself to stop. I needed to be flexible on some things, so I didn’t overburden myself.
  2. I can’t get upset unless I have directly asked someone to do something. As I typed that I realized how bratty it sounds but, its more for everyone else’s benefit than mine. It’s better explained in an example. Mr. B usually empties the dishwasher and I load. If I’m ready to load and he hasn’t emptied the dishwasher, I’m not allowed to be upset with him unless I have already asked him (and given him a day) to unload the dishwasher. To me it is obvious the dishwasher needs to be emptied every day. To my type B husband, well, he just doesn’t think that way.
  3. I shut doors. and drawers, and cabinets, and curtains. Some days my tub needs to be cleaned and it stresses me that it isn’t but, I just don’t have the time or energy to clean it or I just want to be lazy. So, I shut the curtain. Out of sight out of mind. The other time I use this is with my husband’s stuff. I just don’t look in the electronics drawer. I just shut it. His bedside table? I put it all in the drawer and shut it. He doesn’t let me go through that stuff (probably because I’ll throw something out that he doesn’t want thrown out).
  4. I make lists. Type A people have to feel productive but, sometimes I have those days where I feel like I accomplished nothing. So, I make lists. I make lists of what I have done that day (ex. I answered all my emails, I did the dishes, I planned the budget, etc.) Sometimes, I make a list at the beginning of the week and I’ll check things off. Sometimes, I add things to my list just so I can check them off! Usually a list makes me comprehend that even if didn’t get everything done, at least I got some things done.
  5. I take a shower. or go to sleep. Sometimes, I just get so anxious or stress myself out so much that the only solution is to stop. Stop doing everything and find a place to relax. If I’m tired I force myself to sleep. If not I take a shower, like a half-hour to an hour long shower. The $5 it raises my water bill a month is worth it for the amount it destresses me.

This is how I deal with being type A. Being type A is  a burden and a blessing (which I’ll talk about why I’m grateful for my Type A personality in another post). How do you deal with the stress of being type A?

xoxo,

Kels