Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Tasty Tuesday: Delicious Banana Bread!

Stephanie is very into baking lately, and asks me every day what we're going to make. I love the time that she and I get to spend together in the kitchen, and I have to say that she's a very good helper! She pours things into the bowl and mixes everything together for me. She is always proud of our final product and tells me that she is my star chef. 

One of our favorite baked goods is banana bread, and after trying many different recipes I finally found the perfect one. The original recipe came from SimplyRecipes.com and can be found here: Simply Recipes Banana Bread

I modified it very little because it was almost perfect the way it was. I've made it twice now, and the first time it came out a little overdone, so I shortened the baking time by 5 minutes. I added walnuts the first time, which was delicious as well. (My husband likes chocolate chips in his banana bread so I'll be adding those next time.)

Here is the recipe. Enjoy!

Banana Bread

3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed (I used 3 each time and let Stephanie mash them with a potato masher. It was her favorite part of the whole process.)
1/3 C melted butter
1 C sugar 
1 egg, beaten
1 teas vanilla
1 teas baking soda
pinch of salt
1 1/2 C all-purpose flour

1) Preheat oven to 350 
2) With a wooden spoon, mix butter into the mashed bananas, in a large mixing bowl
3) Mix in sugar, egg and vanilla
4) Sprinkle in the baking soda and salt. Mix.
5) Pour mixture into a buttered 4/8 inch loaf pan. (I used cooking spray instead of butter)
6) Bake for 1 hour (As I stated above, I took it out 5 minutes sooner.)
7) Cool on a rack, then remove from pan. Slice to serve. (We ate this yesterday while it was still warm from the oven. SO delicious!)
*I'm linking up with my friend Candice over at The New Modern Momma today for Tasty Tuesday! Hop on over to get some other delicious recipe ideas from some amazing bloggers.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Sibling Bonds Over At Moonfrye

My third post went live over at Moonfrye yesterday!

I'm sharing a little mom-confession regarding my initial wish for another girl the second time around. I'd love for you to hop over and check out my story of sibling bonds and the love between a sister and brother. It was one of my favorite posts to write, and I hope you enjoy it too!

Sibling Bonds on MoonFrye

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Well-Being Wednesday

Way back in January I posted about my goals to get healthy. (I originally planned to have a different goal every month of 2013. But since trying to get healthier is a never-ending battle for me, I'm continuing with that until I feel I've reached a point where I can say I've achieved my goal.)

The winter has been tough, full of illnesses and house buying stress. But I've noticed that I'm snacking a lot less and incorporating more fruits and vegetables into my diet. I don't buy many processed snacks at all anymore which means they aren't in the cabinet tempting me. I also cut nighttime snacking cold turkey. It's the only way that works for me because once I have one small snack, I can't stop and attack everything in sight.

I've been planking every day and alternating between either yoga or strength training each day. I make sure I get at least a 10 minute workout in because there is no way I can claim to be so busy that I can't take 10 minutes for myself. It might not seem like much of a workout, but it really seems to be making a difference. And since I only need to do 10 minutes I don't blow it off or stop doing it altogether. It's all about finding what works, and what works for me is small daily workouts!

I haven't reached my goal weight, and i'm 1.5 pounds away from the lowest I've been since having children. But my clothes fit better, I have more energy and my body seems much leaner and more muscular than it was before. (I'm no body builder but some of the leftover baby flab has started to disappear.) I also managed to wear a pair of my pre-Stephanie pants for the first time ever on Monday. (They are really too tight though, and by the end of the night my stomach hurt from the button digging into me. But I was still proud of being able to get them on!)

It's good to finally feel like i'm making progress toward becoming a healthier version of myself. I know I still have a long way to go, but just the fact that I started this journey in January and am still plugging away at it in March is good for me! (I have a tendency to start a project, go into it full force and then forget about it a few weeks later.)

Are you working on becoming healthier? Are there other goals or resolutions that you've been working on? Feel free to share what works and doesn't work for you!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

A Little House Update

Our official closing date is set for March 27th. That's less than two weeks away! I feel like there's still so much to do, even though we've accomplished a lot. (I have to give credit to my husband for that. He's been on vacation this past week and got so much done.) We aren't officially moving in until April 6th, since the weekend before that is Easter, but we plan on spending that in-between week moving a little here and a little there, and buying any necessary housewares.

I really need to get a move on the packing thing. I packed only three boxes so far, but in my defense we don't actually have any more boxes. So I guess the first thing on my to-do list is to get more. But I run into the issue of what to pack. I look around and think, "But we might need that before we move!" I also don't know what to do with the boxes once I fill them. I think I just need to resign myself to the fact that it's going to be chaos around here for awhile.

We bought furniture last week, which was fun. (We're going into this house with zero furniture. We've been living in a furnished apartment for as long as we've been together. So we get to start from scratch.) It's all set to be delivered two days after we close. So even if I don't pack anything else, at least the house will be furnished!

Other than that, it's been a lot of talking, a lot of phone calls and a lot of list making. Our whole lives are wrapped up in this process right now, and I honestly didn't realize quite how much it takes over everything. So I apologize in advance if you don't see much of anything besides house and moving stuff on this blog for awhile! I really haven't been able to focus on anything else.

If you have any moving tips for me, especially moving with two kids under 4, please share! In the meantime I'm going to go sit and think about boxes. Maybe if I think hard enough, they'll just appear...

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Raising a Good Eater; Moonfrye Post 2

My second Moonfye post went live on Sunday! I meant to update over here as well, but as usual I can't seem to stay on top of things. I promise once we move I'm making myself a blogging schedule and I'm sticking to it!

I'm very blessed that my kids are great eaters. I know some people really struggle to get their kids to eat, and some have tried every trick in the book with no success. But if you're looking to get some ideas, I wrote down all the things we've done and continue to do at meals and snack times to help our kids eat well. I'd love for you to pop over to Moonfrye and check out the post!

How To Raise A Good Eater

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Sick Days...

We've spent the past few weeks inside battling colds, ear infections, stomach bugs and flu-like viruses. One of the four of us has been sick every day since February 18th. I'm so sick of it! I've been the latest one afflicted, just as I thought my cold had gone away. On Friday night I started to not feel good, and I woke at 2am with chills, body aches, nausea and dizziness. I went to the Dr. yesterday and he said he thinks it's the flu, although the rapid flu test came back negative. That basically means I have a virus but since it's not technically THE flu, he can't give me any medicine. Is it spring yet???

Right now I'm pretty useless around the house, and feeling so grateful that my husband has stepped up to take over the child care while I rest and feel sorry for myself recover. Up until I got hit with this round of sickness I'd been doing my best to keep everyone busy while one or both children needed to be kept indoors to get better.

This has been tough, because both the kids and I have a tough time being cooped up, and it's always worse when you don't feel good. It gets especially rough when the kids are starting to feel better but Dan and I feel sick. (We had colds at the same time. It was not fun.) Somehow we managed to keep ourselves busy with books, puzzles, games, and crafts. I have to offer a huge thank you to everyone who gave Stephanie busy gifts for her birthday. The board games and crafts were a huge help in keeping her occupied while she didn't feel good!

One of the things that Stephanie and I decided was that we needed to bring a hint of spring into our house. She thought it would be a great idea to do some spring crafts, so I decided to let her make a giant flower.

I cut a tulip shape out of yellow paper, handed her a bottle of glue and a bag of spring-colored pom-poms and it kept her busy for at least half an hour.

She insisted that the final product get hung on the wall. I think it came out pretty cute!

What do you do with your kids on rainy, snowy or sick days when you can't leave the house? I'm always looking for fun suggestions! Also, please send healthy vibes our way...

Monday, March 4, 2013

February Book List

I can't believe it's March already! This is an exciting month for us, as it is the month that we will officially become home owners. February was spent in a whirlwind of realtor meetings and phone calls, bank meetings, etc. Hopefully the time we have from now until closing will be a little more settled and I'll find more time to read!

At the beginning of February I wrote a list of all the books I read in January. (You can find that list here!)

In February I only read four.

1) Does this Church Make Me Look Fat? by Rhoda Janzen. This was a follow-up memoir to Rhoda's first book, Mennonite in a Little Black Dress. She writes about her journey with cancer, her second marriage, and her newly discovered faith. I love memoirs, and found that the author attacked some very serious subjects with a good dose of humor.

2) Belonging by Robin Lee Hatcher. This was a quick easy read. Set in the late 1800s, the book tells the tale of a woman names Felicia who moved to Idaho to become a school teacher. It's a romance, and a bit predictable, but a heartwarming tale.

3) Habits of the House by Fay Weldon. I read this book because Jane Green, one of my favorite authors, recommended it on her Facebook page. She said if you're a Downtown Abbey fan, you will enjoy this book. I've never seen Downtown Abbey, and really have no idea what it's about but I decided to read it anyway. I found it a little slow, but the story wasn't bad. It's about an English Earl who falls on hard times at the beginning of the 20th century. He is struggling to keep up appearances while helping his family gain back some of the riches they lost. The book is the first in a trilogy, so I will probably end up reading the rest of them at some point.

4) Accelerated by Bronwen Hruska. I really, really liked this book, and flew through it. It's a novel about a man raising his 8 year old son in New York City. (His wife ran out on them a few months earlier.) His in-laws pay for his son to attend a ritzy Upper East Side school, which is pressuring him to put his son on ADHD medicine even though he doesn't think it's necessary to do so. It really gets you thinking about the culture in our country and the way we push our kids to succeed, to the point of putting their health at risk. I highly recommend this one.

What have you been reading lately? I'm always open for suggestions! If you decide to read any of these (or have already read them) let me know what you think!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...