Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Crock Pot Broccoli Beef

This is a meal so easy, Bubba did all of it, including the photo! So, I'm taking Bubba's exact words and having him basically post this (he's talking, I'm typing, that's how WE roll). 

Here's what you need:
Beef - cut into strips or cubes. We used small eye of round steaks we needed to use.
Oil - 1 Tsp
1/2 Cup Soy Sauce
1/3 Cup Brown Sugar

Mix everything in the crock pot except the Broccoli and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Once cooked, drain all but a little bit of the juice in the crock pot. "Like, a ladle full of juice is what you need to leave."

Add the Broccoli and then cook on high for about an hour or so. Make your rice or noodles separately, and it'll all be done at the same time!

Dinner was delicious honey, seriously good stuff! 

Guest Post: DIY Canvas Art

Meet Laura! Laura was one of my very first readers and I adore her! She's so fun to talk to and I love seeing all of her creations as she shares them - today she's sharing how she created some awesome wall art on a college students budget!

Now, without further ado, I'll let Laura take over!

Hi guys! My name is Laura. I recently started my third year of nursing school. Dani asked me to guest post on the blog after we had a few email conversations about crafts and Pinterest. I found her blog on Pinterest when I was trying to find ideas to dress up my makeup brushes. I fell in love with her blog and had to email her to tell her. Not creepy at all! I hope you all like my post! :) 

Living in a college apartment and on a college student’s budget, I am very limited on ways to decorate. 

We are not allowed to paint (hello jail-cell walls). I was looking for something to liven up a bare wall in my bedroom and had a Friday afternoon with nothing to do. I ventured out to Hobby Lobby, and put myself on a $15 limit—I can do some serious damage to my debit card there. I picked up a pack of two white canvases, 16x20 inches for $7.99. I also grabbed a few bottles of acrylic paint at Wal-Mart, each for 57 cents. BIG spender, I know.

I used standard masking tape to make random lines on the canvas. The more tape you use, the more sections of color you’ll have. 

I painted each open area with the colors. I did one canvas with blue, teal, purple and gray, and a second canvas with yellow, pink and orange. Once the paint dried, I peeled the tape and hung them up.

My new wall art cost about $13 dollars and took two hours to make. I am so excited to have some color in my room; it is way less prison-y now.

I would suggest making sure the tape is pressed snug to the canvas with no wrinkles. This will help make crisp lines and prevent paint from seeping under the tape and ruining the white lines. I used tape long enough to secure to the back of the canvas and painted the sides of the canvas too, but you could stop at the edges of the front. Also, peel off the tape slowly and be sure the paint is completely dry. I didn’t let it dry enough and part of the tape peel off a bit with the tape.

I love how simple this project is and so versatile; you can do any pattern with the tape (zig-zags, zebra stripes, etc). You can use any color combination to match any d├ęcor. I’m thinking I’ll make another in Halloween colors for my front door and one for the boy toy with red, black and silver to start off Husker football season

Monday, September 24, 2012

Growing Up and Moving On

It seems really, really corny to say that lately, things have just been wonderful. 
Any time is a good time to stage an impromptu family photo!
I don't know exactly why things have been so great, if it is just me enjoying the moments, or the simplicity of the mundane, or us keeping so busy we cannot keep things straight, but I am loving how things have been lately. Both sides of the family are getting along famously, with us and each other, school is going well, no drama at work or at home, and things are overall, just going fantastic.

While things have been this way, I've spent some time reflecting on why they haven't been this way before, or felt this way. Is it that it just hasn't felt wonderful? Is it that I didn't know what wonderful was or didn't understand it? Is it because I wasn't allowing the wonderful to happen?

It really is no secret that I've done a lot of growing up in the past year. Maybe it has something to do with growing up and becoming a better person that allows me to appreciate the way things are now.

While I wish I understood the secret as to what we did to make everything work out so well, I am embracing it, knowing that nothing lasts forever and that everything has to change. Luckily, at this point in our story, the things that are changing are for the best and I am able to appreciate it more than I would have before.

I'm so thankful I have been able to learn from the lessons God has given me and the challenges he's given our family. 
 Lately I've been focusing a lot of time and effort on things. I've been thinking a lot about life and since I have the time on my daily commutes to reflect, I've done so. The thing that keeps popping into my head, that when I actually practice rings true is this;

Everything I put effort into, I'm going to love more, appreciate more, and cherish more.

And I truly mean everything, I've put more effort into my job, my family, my marriage, my home, and I have found an appreciation for even the smallest of things, because I'm looking at EVERYTHING. I've been focused more on each thing in front of me instead of multi-tasking, and have been accomplishing so much, by focusing better.

I know this post is corny, and if I were a reader, I'd roll my eyes and scroll on past this, but if you made it this far, thank you for reading my thoughts and allowing me to get them out there. I really appreciate it and the fact that I have so many fantastic fans and readers that allow me to blog and share my family and our adventures with them. Love ya!

Saturday, September 22, 2012


Sometimes you've just got to put on your jammies and call it an early night. 

Hope you've had a fantastic week! 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Crock pot Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta

Maybe I am late to the party, but I didn't realize that I could cook pasta in my crock pot. This is going to change our diets and lives forever, and not in a good way.

What you'll need:
3-4 chicken breasts
1 package Ranch seasoning
1 cup Sour Cream
1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
2 "spoonfuls" of Bacon Bits

Add everything into your crock pot and cook for 8 hours on low.

It was definitely questionable looking going into the pot.

After eight hours, add 1 1/2 cup milk and pasta, turn the crock pot on high and stir well. As you stir, the chicken will shred, that's just fine. Stir the pasta occasionally, and let cook on high for one hour. 

It looks so much tastier now! Add veggies and serve! 
We've had our times when we've tried ranch recipes with meats that don't go over well... this is NOT one of those recipes! 

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Rants, Thoughts and the Like

I know a lot of bloggers do these kinds of posts, the ones where it is randomness and full of odds and ends. I guess I didn't really want to HAVE to do it, so I worked really hard and providing what I deemed "great" content for my readers as long as I could.

Didn't last very long, but oh well. That's life.

Basically, I'm on a mini-hiatus from the popular version of "mommy blogging" until I can finish re-grouping and figure out exactly what I'd like to do here. I know that this is my space and I can do it with whatever I'd like, but honestly, I HAVE to have a plan. That's just my personality type. Until then, recipes when I've got new ones and photos of the family for my long distance family and friends.

I really hate how people will judge you by how you look or dress. When I told someone I had a "mommy blog" recently and that I was interested in fashion, it was insisted that since I don't have a "bubble necklace" that I'm not legit. What? Seriously?

For the record, if I was more self confident, you'd see more fashion posts. I'm not confident, and that hinders how I feel about posing for the camera for a bunch of strangers. I love y'all though!

We live out of a crockpot since I started school. I don't mind it, since Pinterest provides me with TONS of recipes. I do mind that most of the time I'm too tired by the time Brayden's asleep to look them up.

I know that fall is here and that Halloween is fast approaching, but I just cannot get into the craft making portion of the season. Anyone have any advice? I love Halloween when it is made for KIDS. Adult Halloween is definitely not my favorite, too gross and gory. I see enough gore at work, don't need to make a holiday of it.

 I REALLY want to host a giveaway on the blog here soon, but I have no idea what my readers want, need or would enjoy. Anyone have an ETSY shop, online store or blog they want to use to sponsor a giveaway? I'd LOVE to have you!

Speaking of wants (I consider this a need though), I really want a new camera. My camera was bought by me in 2008 in October. It was purchased during Breast Cancer Awareness Month so it is pink, and was naturally, on sale. It does the job I want it to, but I want to take better photos. I know I have the ability to take fantastic photos because I've used other cameras, both film and digital and LOVE it. I really need to get one.

The voice of an old professor is always talking to me when I sit down to blog. He used to always say, "so what? Who cares?" whenever we wrote. At the time I thought it was true and poetic, but the most people blog, the more I realize it may not be true, because there is an awful lot that I read that I almost say it myself. There are completely different rules from blogging than journalism folks.

I think Brayden knows what a camera is and is trained to smile for it. If he is, kudos to me because that means he is trainable. If not, well, awesome, at least we can fake happiness and perfection for everyone else.

I hope you all have a fantastic week - I'm hoping to regroup soon!

Our Week in Photos!

Our Week in Photos. I love this part of the week and the blog, mainly because I love posting photos of the little dude. I love reviewing our week and all that we were able to accomplish (or put off, whichever the case may be). This week was an INSANE week, and I am so glad that it is over with!

Photo Set One: Top row
1. I've been sick this week. On my day off I found a bunch of masks in my backpack and a note from a co-worker that said "feel better soon, don't get your kid sick!" The joys of working in a hospital.
2. It's getting cooler, which means baby boy has that many more items of clothing we can put on him. This one is a Dinosaur hoodie, and is ADORABLE. I love all the hoodies for babies.
3. Little dude and daddy. They're best buds.
Middle Row: 1. Little man sacked out.
2. One of my daily views, but I love it.
Bottom row - Making homemade applesauce with Oma, the apples are from her tree in the backyard! I picked them all myself and sliced them, we sprinkled them with sugar and added cinnamon sticks. Yum!

Photo Set Two: Row One:
1. My great-godmother and her family sent Brayden some shoes! Even I don't have a pair of Pumas! Lucky little dude!
2. Brayden and daddy reading. We're trying to start a new habit of reading books every day during "quiet time", before a nap or bedtime.
3. The men playing.
Row Two:
1. Hey look, I was sick again.
2 & 3. My little brother and I came up with this game when I was in high school, you basically turn off all the lights and take photos of each other to see what funny faces get pulled. Its awesome.
Row Three:
1. Just being happy.
2 & 3. I got home from class to Bubba wanting to show me "something awesome", this was what it was.

Photo Set Three - All of it.
BYU and UTAH played on Saturday (and the Utes gave BYU a chance to win THREE TIMES and they still lost!), and folks, we BLEED RED. Naturally, we had to get photos when we saw how adorable little man looked in his game day gear. 

What did you do this week? Comment below! 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Guest Post: Lacie from The Danielson's!

This week we have Lacie from the wonderful family blog "The Danielson's!" Lacie is adorable and I absolutely love her, her cute little family and her blog. I'll let her do the rest of the introduction and show us what she has to share!

Hi ya'll! Im Lacie and I blog over at The Danielson's
 and before you ask, no I am not from the south. I just have an odd obsession with the word ya'll

I was so excited when Dani asked me to do a guest post. I went to school with Dani back in the day. Its safe to say in the 5 or so years since high school that facebook was basically our only form of communication. When I found out Dani had a blog though, I was so excited.
There is just something about other bloggy moms.
It's like this awesome world of best mommy friends,
you can ask for advice, get great ideas, and just love on pictures of their little ones!

I wasn't really sure what to post about today. Im not a great chef. I don't have a different DIY project every week. Im just a mommy blogger! & I like it that way.
I started my blog as a way to remember the little details of my sons life that seem to just slip by so fast, before I have had time to blink.
Blogging has turned in to so much more then that now.
In other words its my outlet.
I hope to do some future guest posts here in the future.
So I think ill start this post off with some about me.

Well friends im Lacie. Im a 23 year old momma & wifey to the two best boys the world has ever known! The hubby is named Tanner. & the son, his name is Hudson.
In the mornings I am a working momma,
but the afternoons & evenings are soley dedicated to my to amazing boys.
I went to school and became a Master Esthetcian, unfortunatley I wasn't able to find work close enough to home after school & then I got married and pregnant while the hubby was finishing an internship. So now I work at a bank. I still love esthetics and hope to get back to it soon!
My Husband is an Audio Enginer. He hates when I talk about his job becuase he says I make it sound cooler then it is. But it is a really cool job and I am so proud of him so I have to brag ;]
He basically records music for different movies and tv shows. But ill leave it at that so he doesn't get mad at me again.
We are Highschool sweet hearts who started dating the summer after our sophmore year.
we were a typical 'highschool' couple and dated on & off
after highschool Tanner went to Arizona for school and we had a long distance relationship
then, after 5 years of dating Tanner asked me to be his wife
We got married on July 3, 2010
We had our wonderful amazing son on Jamuary 24th 2011
He has been the biggest blessing in both of our lives

When Hudson was born he was in the NICU
you can read more about that here
& here
that was one of the hardest experiences of my life
but it taught me so much, and showed me just how precious life really is
Hudson has grown into such a crazy little toddler!
He is now 19..almost 20 eek..months old
He is all boy.
He has been such a handful and has shown us that whatever we think about parenting, he is going to prove us wrong!
This crazy little man started sitting up at 3 months, crawling at 4 1/2 months, he took his first steps at 6 1/2 months, and by 8 months he was a walking pro!
Needless to say, he is great at 'testing limits'

Ok, so that is us in a nutshel.
I think I have talked your ear off enough for one day.
I wanted to leave you with one thing though
my autumn bucket list!
Autumn is my absolute favorite season of the year,
& I am so excited Hudson is older and can enjoy it more this year :)

I found this on pinterst, and I am just not crafty enough to make my own this will have to work. I think its just perfect.
even though I don't drink coffee, I will make it work for the lists sake

Hope everyone has a wonderful day!
And thanks again DANI, I have had so much fun


Monday, September 10, 2012

Are you Grumpy?

I don't know about you, but today has been a MONDAY - to say the VERY least. Driving to work, someone threw a soda in a Styrofoam container out their window, covering my car in soda pop and the lid scratched my windshield when it hit! So scary. Stress from work and family issues has my muscles ACHING. Seriously, I think I got hit by a truck or something. Also, I'm sick, so I feel like an incubator for all things gross and contaminated *sniff sniff*. 

However, this made me smile and made me feel less grumpy. 

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Our Week in Photos!

Can I just say that I my life is full time? Full time work, full time school, and most importantly, full time mommy. We don't get a break (and we don't mind it), but we do forget to do things, like take photos of our week. Luckily, Monday was a holiday, so I managed to remember. 

Brayden and Oma. We can FINALLY do his hair in a faux-hawk.  

We went to the Park after my brother-in-law's birthday dinner. Brayden had never been before and LOVED it. The slides and the sand were his favorite. He enjoyed playing with dad, cousin CJ and mom.

Cousin CJ and Brayden on the saddle at Texas Roadhouse. CJ loves his family, and is such a good older cousin . 

If anyone has any tips on being better about taking photos, PLEASE tell me. Obviously I have trouble remembering!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Bubba's Man Meal

Hey there, Bubba here. Dani is forcing me to write this because I not only took the photo, but I created this recipe. We really can't come up with a good name for it, so we call it "Man Meal." Here's how you make it:

Wrap bacon around chicken breasts. Press down with your thumbs to seal it to the chicken so you don't have to use tooth picks. Put in crock pot.

Dump barbecue sauce over everything. Let sit overnight or cook immediately on low for 8-10 hours.

Serve with rolls, rice, pasta, whatever you'd like. It's easy enough a man can do it and it's delicious.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

We Make the Time

If you were to look at my Google Calendar, you'd probably cry for me. We have a VERY busy schedule. On an average day, I work (mind you, I work full time hours), go to school (I am a full time student), have my home and family obligations, not to mention making time for extended family and ward activities. People often look ask me, "how do you have the time?"

We make the time.

Not too long ago we really didn't have a lot going on. I was on bed rest while pregnant with Brayden and working part time. I wasn't allowed to really do anything, and therefore, didn't do anything. Bubba's soccer was basically our only activity outside of work and doctors appointments and we didn't seem to mind it.

Better put, we didn't realize we minded it.

Things got very rough in our marriage quickly. We got sick of each other, sick of the four walls that was our then one bedroom apartment. We dreaded doing anything with each other, and in turn we fought a lot. After Brayden was born (and was old enough to go out and about with regularly), we decided we needed a change of pace.

I'm not going to lie. Family isn't my strong point. My husband was raised in a very family oriented family. Everything in his life and his home was about the family unit. I wasn't raised quite like that, I was raised a little differently and those differences made a huge impact in our marriage. It didn't take long for me to realize I had to make a change in our marriage or our family wasn't going to be the happy little family we wanted.

As a joke, one of my colleagues told me that Mormons never get divorced because they are too busy to decide to hate each other. This stuck in my mind. Joke or not, there was truth to that statement, and I took to the City Weekly and other free newspapers in search of things for us to do.

We got busy quickly.
Bubba picked up on helping coach two soccer teams, plus playing on a few recreational teams for himself.
I got registered for classes at night.
We set up weekly date nights.
We made going to my parents and in-laws a priority and a weekly event.
We got involved in church and went to weekly and monthly activities.
We quit saying "no" to family events and started saying "yes" to as many things as possible.

Something happened within all the chaos. Things changed in our marriage, but not in the way we wanted our family life to be. We still have dinner at home almost every night, and when we aren't eating at home, it is usually at my mother-in-law's. Brayden is almost always falling asleep in his bed...and when he isn't in his bed, he's sleeping in Grandpa's arms (which, lets face it, is just as good if not better).

We now cherish our time together, because we have little to no time just for the two of us. We talk to each other and have deeper and more rich conversations. We enjoy being with the other, because we know how limited our time is together.

In turn good things have happened with the family. Brayden knows all his Aunts and Uncles and gets to have the fun experiences I could have only hoped he'd have with them. We know our family better and are there to help when needed. We get to see the family at more functions than just the Christmas parties once a year. We get to participate in sports, which teaches the little dude to love and enjoy the outdoors and the importance of exercise in our family. We do service projects when we can, hoping that he'll learn how fun it is to help others. When I'm doing homework, Bubba and Brayden read books as well, and he loves to play with the books and listen to us read to him.

Being busy is helping us create a better home and family life.

How do we have the time?
We had the time before, we'd rather MAKE THE TIME.

Monday, September 3, 2012

DIY: Cute Seat Covers

Lets admit it, seat covers for your car are UGLY. You really can't find one that is cute that hasn't been purchased by everyone and their dog. I was getting really sick of it, and my seat covers were getting faded (due to the sun), stained (due to the husband and baby) and were ugly to begin with. I needed new covers.

Instead of spending up to $15 per seat cover, I spent $15 TOTAL and purchased my fabric, about 6-8 yards and got to work. I didn't take before, after or during photos, because I really did not think this was  going to work in the first place.

Here's what I did:

Take the old seat cover and a pair of scissors. Cut at the seams or wherever you'd like the fabric to be, using the old cover as your pattern. Pin in place and cut into your pattern.

Then, sew together, sewing the back of the seat cover before the bottom part. To ensure that it will stay on your seat, sew an elastic onto the bottom.

I did a double seam to make sure it didn't fall apart, then washed it on "delicate" in the washer. It fit and I was SO excited with the outcome!

Have you ever made your own seat covers? Would you consider making them now?

P.S. Yes, I did take these photos in a parking lot while I was the passenger. I had been wanting to take them and had kept forgetting. Yeah, I'm awesome like that.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Our week in Photos!

 It has been a week - that's for sure! Busy with work, school, being a full time mommy and trying to keep up with the blog - we keep busy!

Bubba's still been playing soccer, coaching and on his recreational teams (he plays on about three or four, mostly filling in as a sub). Brayden gets to enjoy one-on-one time with his daddy, and his grandparents. He's happy as a clam and keeping busy, keeping US busy!

I'm loving my classes and enjoying the time and chance to learn. Things were crazy, but great...


Thursday. Brayden has decided to become a unibomber and dive out of and off of everything. While walking into the house he decided he wanted to dive out of my arms, so I tried to dive and save him...resulting in a really gnarly foot injury. Still not sure what I did to it (it's much worse now than in this picture) because frankly, I won't go to the ER unless it is an emergency and also, I WORK FOR Orthopods, so I can wait til Tuesday when I go back to work.

Nothing says sex appeal like a cankle.

Friday we had a much needed date night, and did it sans technology. We went to Leatherby's for dinner and ice cream and then to Nickelcade for some classic arcade games. It was a fantastic date night and a perfect way to celebrate our anniversary!

Saturday we got invited to go to the RSL game, so we bundled up and left Brayden at Grandma Terrie's to hang out with Aunt Carebear. Weather Advisory postponed the game by almost an hour and a half and we sat it out in the rain like champs. The game was a success, we beat D.C. United 1-0. Yay!

Did you have a great week? What did you do?