Thursday, January 28, 2010


Dog. The word elicits many responses in this house.

Dog = point of contention.
Dog = the hearts desire of three girls in this house.
Dog = vet bills.
Dog = an ever ensuing battle between Daddy and the girls.
Dog = a missing part of the family.
Dog = begging five (almost six!) year olds.
Dog = frustrated exasperated pestered Daddy.

When Matt and I got married, I desperately wanted a dog. At that time we were remodeling a house, and Matt also insisted that it was not good timing to get a dog in the winter.

We sold our house in February, and got this house. Matt then insisted that you can't have a dog without a fence. We don't have a fence. Our old house had a fence. 10 years later we still don't have a fence. We need one, but we always have other things to spend our money on. Fences are expensive.

I still pushed, prodded and begged for a dog. Then we decided to have kids. We decided that it would be better to let a kid get used to a dog than have a dog have to try to get used to a new baby.

My babies are almost 6 and 2 now. My big girl wants a dog so bad, it elicits tears and a battle about every other week around here.

Matt told Brooke a few weeks ago she could get a dog and he would just move out. She was ready to take him up on it...which didn't sit well with him! She was convinced that we would be going to the petstore the next morning, and the fact that Matt meant that he would be leaving was totally lost in the thrill of getting a dog.

Every time we go to CiCi's pizza (which we did tonight for Seltzer fundraiser night), we go next door to Petland. The girls and I want to see the animals, and we always have them bring a puppy out to see us. We soak it up. We cuddle them, love them, longingly wish we could take them home, try to make Matt play with them.

And inevitably we go home with Brooke in tears, begging for a dog. One time Matt told her she could get a dog when she was 16. She latched onto that tiny glimmer of hope and come hell or high water that kid is going to have a dog when she turns 16. Tonight though she decided that 10 years was way too long to wait. Mommy agrees but kept her mouth shut.

Tonight at the pet store we loved on one of these little guys, a Wheaten Terrier:

Cute cute little dogs! He was so sweet and cuddly.

Now so as to not be a completely not-understanding wife, I know vet bills can get expensive sometimes. I know that most of our family income comes from Matt working hard. I know we don't have a huge amount of cushion in our budget for vet emergencies. I know that to Matt, "dogs are people too" and it is devastatingly sad when the family dog dies. I get that. I know he is still sad about losing the family dog back when we were first married.

Matt seems to think that having a dog means no road trips, no vacations, etc. I tell him regularly that there are people everyday who have pets who take vacations. The word is "boarding" or "dog-sitter." You get me a dog, I guarantee I'll figure out what to do with it when we have to go somewhere.

But I know too that Matt was raised with dogs. He knows what it is to have a pet to love and play with. He knows in his heart that his girls, all three of us, deserve to have a pet. And I'm with Brooke on this one. We should not have to wait till she's 16. And I can't figure out why he thinks his answer is the final answer on this. Why can't my answer be the one that wins?

Until he finally caves to our wishes, I will continue to bite my tongue, to quietly cheer Brooke on in her campaign to get a dog, and hope he will finally realize that a dog would be a great thing to have. And after tonight's post-Petland drama, he said he'd never go back there with Brooke again.... so until then I will continue to take my girls there. To get our pet fix. To get our puppy time. And someday, hopefully, we will have a puppy of our own to love!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


My friend Jodi had posted on her blog a fun entry titled "what makes me happy."

I'm stealing her idea-she stole it from someone else-and posting a list of things that truly make me happy.

These are in no particular order.

1. getting compliments on a meal or dessert I've made.
2. doing nice things for people just because.... if I'm having a crappy day the best way to make me feel better is to do some out-of-the-blue thing for someone else. Dropping flowers at a friends house, etc. Just makes me happy.
3. Disney World and Disney Cruise Line. Duh.
4. Listening to Hannah's ever growing vocabulary.
5. Having special Mommy-Brooke time. It just thrills her to death to go do some fun girly thing just with me, and it thrills me to thrill her.
6. Pestering Matt...I love putting cold hands on him in a warm toasty bed, tickling him when he's trying to go to sleep. I've got a very ornery sense of humor when it comes to antagonizing my husband.
7. Being told "I love you" or "you're a wonderful friend," etc --words of affirmation in general!
8. Little Debbie Christmas Tree cakes
9. Watching funny movies
10. Reminiscing with old friends
11. Crab legs
12. Getting little gifts...I like gifts. I like surprises. Feel free to randomly bestow them upon me!
13. Beaches
14. Crawling into a freshly made bed. I got into the habit of changing our sheets every Friday a few months ago and I'm loving it.
15. Date night with Matt.

What makes YOU happy?

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Notes from a 5-year old

Brooke is doing great at school and is really getting into reading and writing. It is amazing to me watching her sound words out, try to spell them herself, etc.

The other day, I came downstairs and she tells me "Mom there is a note for you on the fridge."
This is what I found:

I thought it was sooooo cute. If you can't quite interpret it; this is what it says:

"Mommy plez (pease) git (get) Mole (molly, her baby doll) up and let Hannah play uif (with) Mole (molly). Love Brooke C."

I thought it was so precious.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Favorite Websites and Blogs

*disclaimer-just because your website doesn't get mentioned on this post doesn't mean I don't love it. I love lots of websites. I'm just sharing some tidbits about some that happen to be in my head right now!!!

Do you have a plethora (don't you love that word) of "favorites" bookmarked on your computer? I have a ton on my desktop, but only a few here on my laptop. I thought I'd share some websites that I really like, as well as highlight a few of the blogs I have posted to the right of my page.

My favorite favorite favorite website (well, aside from facebook and my yahoo email!) is The Pioneer Woman. Her website is (I don't know how to make her name a little hyperlink like some of you fancy bloggers know. someone needs to teach me). Anyways, the Pioneer Woman is Ree Drummond- self proclaimed city girl turned rancher wife living in Oklahoma. What started out as a simple blog has turned into a major enterprise for her! Her "blog" is fabulous- she writes witty stuff usually centered around life on a ranch. She has a fabulous recipe section (and recently published a cookbook that is a bestseller). There's not a thing on her recipe section that I haven't loved so far. She has a "home and garden" section which covers a wide spectrum of things. She's a (very talented) photography nut and is always posting amazing pictures, photoshop tutorials, etc. And finally she homeschools 4 children, so there is a section about that. I am not patient or disciplined enough to homeschool, so I don't hit that tab too often! :0)

For recipes, I most often turn to On that site I like to search for what I'm looking for, oatmeal cookies for example, and then sort the search results by rating so you get the top rated / most rated recipes on the top of your listing. I've actually bookmarked a variety of the recipes individually in my favorites tab!

I've got a whole section of Disney sites bookmarked, both for my travel agent hat and my Disney-nut hat (would that be my mouse-ears?). is a great message board community of other Disney nuts. is one of Disney's main sites, and although it runs slow and sometimes is like searching for a needle in a haystack, you can often find a lot of information there! is a great site for finding cute handmade/homemade items. A great place for crafters to sell their goods, without being eaten up by the fees at ebay. The etsy community is a very sweet one!

Now onto some blogs I wanted to share with you!

One of Matt's old friends, Michelle, recently started a blog at
Michelle and her family, to prove that you CAN make significant change in your life for the good of the world around you, have challenged themselves to spend the year 2010 living under the rations of WWII. The government rationed food and goods back then to support the war effort, and so Michelle has her family doing the same thing. They want to see what it is like to really live with less. Where your needs are met, but life is not full of extravagance. While I can't quite get my head around it, don't understand all the math, etc...I can tell you it has made for some interesting reading for sure! Michelle is a history buff (or nerd, if you're her friend you can probably call her that!) so she's researched the heck out of this project and they are well on their way. And while I think it is crazy as in I don't think I would ever do it- it sure is quite the challenging project to watch from the sidelines! I love sitting over here at littleworthwhilemoments eating a cheeseburger while they are eating a spamburger over yonder :) Good luck Michelle!

My friend Abbe can be found at She writes with such an honesty I often feel like I'm having a conversation with my computer! She's had some pretty neat things happen in her life recently that have been a joy to read about. She's one of the sweetest, nicest, most wonderful people I know and I'm glad she has a blog so we can peek in the window at her life since hectic lives makes it hard to connect in person most of the time! And did I mention what a gorgeous, photographic family they are?!

An old friend from high school gave birth to triplets almost two years ago, rather prematurely. While they sadly lost one of the triplets quite quickly, she has been blessed with lots to blog about with Lindy and Will's adventures. I have learned a lot about premature babies through reading her blog and a few others... and it's so amazing how far they have come! Go visit jamie at

Now if some of my old friends, or current friends had blogs, here are some names they could have used.

Debbi, my best friend, has a 6 yr old, a 4 yr old, and twin almost-2 yr olds. Her blog would probably be titled "get me a padded room! quick!" LOL--actually God knew what he was doing when he sent HER the twins and not me! (our little ones are just a few weeks apart).

Sarah, my neurotic, self-proclaimed OCD girlfriend would have to have a tagline that says "There's medication for that!" because that's what I was always telling her when she would get all worked up about things.

Kristi-my neighbor that I never can seem to catch just chillin at home might call her website "imeetmyselfcomingandgoing" .com

The neighbors across the street should have a blog called "yeswearethejackasses" . com -- I'm sure I'll blog about them someday.

My husband could start a blog called "iwishicouldwinthelotterybutatleastmywifealwaysmakesmecookies" .com

And what are some of your favorites?

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Thirty Dinner Ideas

I thought I'd share with you 30 dinner ideas so if you are in a rut, perhaps this will help you! Not that I can promise that! These are cooler-weather I won't even cheat and say stuff like "grilled burgers" or "tortellini salad with garden veggies" since most of us aren't grilling or growing veggies right now!

I'll start with some of the obvious and try to pull out some more creative ones as we go along!

1. Chili and cornbread. Duh. Though I remember chili-days at school included applesauce and cinnamon rolls, also a lucious combination.
2. Homemade chicken and noodles. Yummy served over mashed potatoes if you're feeling a hankerin for more starch than usual. These are good served with cinnamon-candied apples.
3. Canned soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. (when we do this, everyone gets to pick their own soup!).
4. Chicken and cheese quesadillas with salsa, corn
5. Sausage and apple filled French Toast cups, hashbrowns, and smoothies
6. baked fish (tilapia) topped with panko-bread crumbs served on wild rice and cooked carrots
7. Baked pasta-prepare pasta according to directions, mix with a jar of spaghetti sauce and some shredded cheese, bake until hot and melty. Serve with garlic bread and salad.
8. Beanie Weenies. Not that my girls will eat the weenies. They both have to be in just the right mood for hot dogs. A little annoying!
9. Chicken cordon-bleu casserole: cube up chicken breast, top with diced up ham, swiss cheese. Smear can of cream of chicken soup over that, top with can of stuffing that has been mixed with 1 stick margarine and 1/2 cup water. Bake until cooked thru.
10. Grilled sandwiches-- get a fun bread, some deli ham, a tasty cheese, a little dijonaiise, grill it up like a grilled cheese. Serve with a pasta salad, raw veggies.
11. Snack night: summer sausage, cheese, crackers, little smokies, apples with peanut butter, etc
12. Pot roast. duh.
13. Taco ring (taco meat, crescent rolls, cheese, etc).
14. Grilled fish brushed with a little olive oil/cajun seasoning/lemon juice- served on toasted buns with cajun mayo.
15. Pancakes, bacon, and bananas
16. Chicken alfredo casserole
17. Lemon pepper chicken sandwiches with american cheese, served on toasted buns.
18. Creamed chicken on biscuits
19. Chef salad (with grilled chicken or rolled up lunch meat) and garlic bread
20. Faux Beef Burgundy served on tortellini; with green beans
21. Pizza Hut
22. Chicken salad in pitas or tortillas, served with chips and raw veggies or fruit
23. Chicken Parmesan sandwiches with sweet potato fries
24. Baked chicken served on rice
25. Scalloped potatoes with chunks of ham in it, peas on the side
26. Mini-meatloaves, mashed potatoes, green beans.
27. Homemade "runzas" -- thaw out Texas rolls, roll them out flat, fill with: ground beef mixed with beefy onion soup mix and cheddar cheese. Pinch together and let rise. bake till golden brown. Good with baked beans.
28. Individual pizzas, good on french bread or english muffins. Everyone can choose their own toppings.
29. Beef and noodles
30. Slow Cooker Chicken Taco Soup--- that recipe is on - -check it out. Good with tortillas or fritos.

You can thank me later :)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Hannah's First Haircut

Hannah will be two at the end of next month. Decided to go for her first haircut today. We went to my friend Abbe, whom I just adore, to do the job. Hannah knows her from church so I thought she'd be fine.

No such luck. She threw a huge fit. I think it was the apron-thingy. I should have thought of it beforehand, but this girl doesn't even like to wear bibs. I bet if we wouldn't have messed with that, she'd have been okay.

So mommy ended up in the chair, and Hannah ended up on my lap with a paci firmly stuck in her mouth. Then she did fine. Sat still, eyes wide and taking it all in. Abbe did a great job cutting those sweet curly little locks.

When Brooke got her first haircut we gave her bangs. No bangs for Hannah. Just getting it away from being straggly.

Abbe did a great job on my little cutie. The little curls really bounced right up after bath tonight, it was so cute.

Here are a few pics- they are hard to take when the subject is on your lap!

By the way... my NEXT POST will be my 100th post! First person to comment on my NEXT post will win a prize! (I haven't decided what!)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

I knew this day was coming....

....remember when I blogged about nudist colonies a few weeks ago? It was because I was putting on my favorite jeans and got to wondering when they were going to bite the dust.

I started wondering about that because another-not-so-favorite pair of jeans recently bit the dust.

Today, my favorite jeans bit the dust. The button finally wore thru the fabric and fell out. You know how jeans buttons are riveted on? The rivet pulled thru the denim. That's what happens when you put stress on them from squeezing into them!

I was in the garage and I went "oh no! no! no!" which of course made Matt get concerned that something was really wrong. When I told him what happened he said "well just go get another pair.".

helloooooo. i've had these jeans for about 6 years. They are the softest denim i've ever felt in my whole life. They are not gigantically boot-cut like most jeans seem to be these days. They were perfect. And they were fitting pretty decently these days. And they were a bit lighter in color. Seems most of my jeans are darker denim these days.

And more. I'm so bummed.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

a little quiet time

I am a Christian and love Jesus with all my heart. I even have my "Got Jesus?" shirt on right now. But if were ever to be measured on how "good" of a Christian we are by the amount of time we spend reading the Bible, I'd probably be in big trouble.

I've been pretty busy lately. I've been listening to God, talking to Him, trying to do what I feel he leads me to do. And today that led me to Jeremiah 29. Actually I flipped around in my Bible trying to find something that really rang home to all the thoughts and activities going on right now. And when I flip through the Bible, I often land on a place that I highlighted before (yes, a long while before).

One of my favorite verses is Jeremiah 29:11-14: "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to proper you and not to harm you, plans to give you HOPE and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you," declares the Lord, "and will bring you bac k from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you," declares the Lord, "and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile."

It is always so reassuring to know that God knows his plans for us. He knows exactly what he's doing with us right now, what he'll be having us to do tomorrow. He has prepared our path, and when we seek him, He escorts us down it. Kind of makes me think of all the time we as mommies spend holding our children's hand as we walk down the street. God holds our hand, and guides our every move, when we let Him.

I'm thankful that I've felt God so closely lately. I've seen the great things he can do, and I rejoice that He gives us HOPE. Life is good and we can always count on that.

"from the center of my soul to the edge of the universe, creation is crying out, believe it or not...there is a God...I believe it...." --- just happens to be playing on the Christian music channel right now-- titled "There is a God" by 33 Miles.

I've believed in God for a long time, I took Jesus in my heart years ago, but I still feel so inspired and in awe when I see Him working.

Have you seen a glimpse of Jesus today?

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Easy / Hearty Winter Recipes

A friend and I were talking about the craziness that is the dinner hour at our respective homes. My children start falling apart about 445 and if I don't have dinner on the table by about 515 it is madness. The witching hour. It is better in the summer when they can just go play outside while I'm cooking, but when we're inside they are just under-foot, asking for snacks, getting in the way.

I thought I'd share some of my new favorites to help get you thru those crazy winter days. I like to get dinner started during naptime when I have peace and then the witching hour doesn't stress me out so much. The crockpot is our friend, is it not!? Others are some quick-fix meals that I think you would like.

This post won't have photos; nor exact measure recipes; but basic recipes / menu ideas, etc.

Here goes:

I recently created a new Beef and Noodles recipe in the crockpot.
I put about a package of stew meat (actually I used "kabob" meat- but whatever) in a crockpot. Drizzle with a little olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put in some diced onions and minced garlic. I think I used about half a yellow onion and 2 cloves of garlic. Pour in a can of Beef Consomme (in the soup section, dillons carries it), 2 cans of water, and 2 beef bouillon cubes. Put the lid on and walk away for several hours. About 2 or three hours before dinner, coin-up some baby carrots and throw those in, so you can officially say you had a vegetable with dinner. While this has been cooking, the meat has been getting tender tender. And while this was cooking, you may have elected to make a batch of home-made egg noodles. Best noodles in the world, and if you're really nice to me someday I'll teach you how to make them. If you don't know how to make them, then have a bag of those Reames Frozen Noodles on hand. About an hour before dinner, stir in the noodles and let it finish cooking. Yummy, hearty, and easy.

Another crockpot option, though it can be done on the stove/oven if you forgot to turn your crockpot on is Taco Casserole. This one is not rocket science... brown some hamburger with some diced onion. Throw it into a crockpot. Mix a can of tomato sauce, a packet of taco seasoning, and a stack of flour tortillas that have been cut into bite size pieces. Mix up and leave it on low. About 30 minutes before dinner, stir in some grated cheddar cheese. Serve with taco fixings if you want; and corn is a good side dish with this. As is, of course, spanish rice.

Which brings me to my next suggestion: Spanish Rice. I love this dish. Usually we do it as a side, but it can be a main as well. Measure out 2 cups of minute rice, and saute in a little olive oil in a pot with diced onion and garlic (apparently two of my favorite ingredients). When the rice starts to brown up a little bit, add in 2 cups of chicken broth, cover, reduce to simmer, and leave it alone for about 15 minutes. Upon return, the liquid should be absorbed. Drain a little of the juice off a can of rotel (regular, mild or however hot you like) and dump the rest of the can into the rice. Then stir in some cheese.

If you want to make this a main dish- you would also mix in some ground beef or some cooked chicken. In which case you should throw some salsa in there too to keep it moist. My mom used to make spanish rice with ground beef, then stuff hollowed out green peppers with it, and bake them for stuffed peppers. I'm not much of a pepper fan, so I don't do that!

Finally, another quick option is Lemon Pepper Chicken on fettucine. Pound out some chicken breasts so they are even thickness. Sprinkle them generously with lemon pepper, then put into a preheated skillet with a little olive oil in it. Put them sprinkled side down so once they are in the pan you can season the other side. Saute until lightly browned on the one side, then flip them over, put the lid on and let them finish cooking. Meanwhile, cook up some fettucine. Toss it with some pre-made alfredo (because this is a quick and easy dinner, right) and some parmesan cheese. Cut the chicken into slices for you and your spouse, and cut one into a little pile of bite sized pieces for the little monkeys. Serve chicken over the top of the creamy noodles, and put a little extra sauce on top. The Lemon Pepper gives the whole "chicken fettucine alfredo" a little extra bump.

And don't forget that classic meal, BREAKFAST. It's fun to have breakfast at night! Whipping up a batch of pancakes and some bacon, or a big bowl of scrambled eggs, or even a waffle bar is a fun easy dinner.

When all else fails, there's always pizza delivery :) Join with me in not stressing out over the dinner hour this week!

Happy cooking!