Thursday, April 10, 2014

More changes in the Living Room

How does time get away from me so quickly?!  It's been a good month since I've blogged here and it feels like just days.  

I guess I may have been a little busy...since I blogged last, 2 of my kids have had birthdays, we had Dave's parents here for 2 weeks and I got to sneak away to Hawaii with Dave for 3 days (kid free)!  It's been eventful, but I do miss getting my posts in. 

How have you all been?

Since I'm getting ready to embark on my spring cleaning and rearranging time, I'll show you my current living room set up.  This is what it looked like before.


Now we have a wood stove and our living room is a little more functional than before.  I found this fabulous Fair Isle wool rug at Pier One.  It was a great value (with the coupon I used) and I love how it feels in this space.   The shape gives me more versatility than I had with the rectangle shaped carpet.

This precious little monkey didn't want to be out of the room when I took these, so I just went with it 

 The buffet has been relocated for the wood stove space and I really like having it in the Dining Room.  The light is reflected in the mirror and the dresser actually gets used here in this location.

 The view from the kitchen

 When I was ordering the Fair Isle rug at Pier 1, I happened to find this lovely striped rag rug on sale.  It was a match made in heaven for my kitchen!  The red stool is from Pier 1 as well since I needed a seat at the island for Lydia now that she's big enough.

A final look with no little one photo bombing

I hope you like the changes I made in here.  I know we're loving them. ♥

Monday, March 3, 2014

Best Veggie Soup Recipe!

Last night, I made vegetable soup.  Well, not purely just veggies, but it is vegetable heavy.  Normally everyone moans and groans around here when I tackle something like this and so I was worried none of them would eat dinner (cause I only make 1 meal a night, take it or leave it!).  

Instead of complaining after the first bite, every one of my kids devoured their serving and some of them asked for seconds.  Amazing!

I started with a recipe I've used in the past, back in my Weight Watchers days...this Recipe for zero point soup.

Then I made some changes to fit our family tastes and what I had in my pantry.  All of the ingredients I used are organic and that would be what I would recommend, but you can use whatever you have available.

2 pounds grass fed ground beef 
1/2 red onion, chopped
4 garlic gloves, minced
2 tsp salt
1 tbl pepper
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp basil
1 carrot (or 10 baby carrots), chopped
1 head of green cabbage, chopped
1 cup unpeeled zucchini, chopped
32 oz Beef Broth
32 oz Creamy Tomato Basil Soup (not the best soup in the world, but great as a base for this recipe)
2 6oz cans tomato paste

For toppings:
Fresh Parsley
Creme Fresh (you could also use plain yogurt or sour cream)
Grated Parmesan Cheese 

Combine the ground beef, all the spices, onion and garlic in a large stockpot until beef is no longer pink.  
Add carrot and saute for a few minutes until slightly softened. 
Add all the rest of the ingredients to the stockpot and bring to a simmer.  Leave uncovered and let simmer for about an hour or until zucchini is well cooked.

Serve with rustic bread and suggested toppings (or whatever else you like to have on your soup!).

This is a large recipe that fed my family of 7 with plenty leftover for lunch the next day.

For myself, since I'm avoiding wheat, dairy and most grains, I just put the parsley as a topping

The kids and my husband were all served this delicious version, with creme fresh and parmesan cheese along with crusty bread and butter.

I must admit, I was a little jealous of how yummy their bowls looked until I tasted mine.  It was awesome all by itself.  You will not regret trying out this meal.  It could likely be cooked in a crockpot as well. 

 If you try it, I'd love to know what you think. Now I'm off to do some cleaning.  I just got off the phone with Dyson's customer service and they helped me fix my vacuums suction issue!  Yay! 

Monday, February 24, 2014

My Party Weekend

Okay, so not that kind of "party".  More like a home party weekend.

I had a couple of vendors to my home on Saturday night.  It was a good night filled with yummy food and lovely ladies.  

We had Thirty-One bags.  
So much awesome organization to choose from! 

The "Deep" is especially enticing for me with all my Krav Maga soreness.  I ordered a goodly amount of natural healing stuff.

And my new personal love, Younique!

I completely forgot to take a picture of the food table!  There was lots of it, and everything was so good!

I had all the vendors do their Presentations while guests ate.  At the end, we did some ordering and played with the skin care and makeup.  I wish I would have gotten before and after photos of the makeovers, but suffice it to say, the women looked amazing and the products were a big hit.

I will be talking more about Younique in the weeks to come because I'll be doing a review and a giveaway!

How was your weekend?

Friday, February 21, 2014

I like it when my dishwasher is broken

It's true...I think I like it when my dishwasher is broken.

On Sunday while I was in the shower, my sweet husband decided to try and fix our dishwasher (which had been running continually post-wash).  If you knew my husband, you would know why I would have immediately advised against such a decision, but I was not in a position to intervene in time.

When I finished getting ready, I discovered dishwasher parts in various places in the kitchen.  Dave informed me he broke the handle switch while attempting to find the running issue.  This lead to an online search for parts.

I managed to find a used part on Ebay and it's on it's way to us.  I'm skeptical as to whether Dave can reinstall this switch and get it working again, but for $30, it's worth a shot.  Honestly, I was just proud he didn't break any parts due to getting mad during the repair.  He stayed calm the whole time. ;)

So, we have no dishwasher right now while we wait for USPS to bring our part to us.  And I like it.

I find that having to hand wash dishes forces me to calm down and take my time with chores.  It's quiet and soothing.  I stay up on my regular chores because I have to stop and do dishes 3-4 times a day (so the volume doesn't get away from me).   

The sink is typically clean nowadays

Even if my counter is cluttered (I'm obviously a fan of air drying)

It forces me to slow down, which oddly enough leads to other chores getting done more frequently.  Like the laundry.
Today, I will likely wash a sink full of dishes at least 3 times.  
I will also be getting caught up on some dusting and mopping

I have a bunch of ladies coming for a makeup party tomorrow night.  We'll have Younique Cosmetics, Scentsy and Thirty One bags as the vendors.  It's going to be fun, but the dust will not be allowed to stay and play.

Now I'm off to clean.  I hope your weekend will be a delightful one.


Friday, February 7, 2014

Photo Roundup

After taking such a long break from blogging, it's hard to get back into it, so I'm going to start with posting my favorite pictures from the last month or two.

 The house at Christmastime.  It was a snug fit with adding 6 extra people for the holiday.  It's a good thing we all love each other!

 Baking in Alaska.  When there isn't room in the refrigerator, there's always the outdoor freezer. 
(I've heard rumors of moose eating fudge when cooling outdoors, so I just prayed they would survive intact)

 Snow on the peanut butter balls

The cousins all together for Christmas

Lydia showing everyone her "smells"...she's slightly obsessed with Scentsy

New Christmas Rocking Horse

The littlest boys all together

Snow Day

The "babies" with my sister.  These two kiddos, likely the end of our childbearing, are a week apart

My new "stag" decor.  I love it.

"Robot" Baby

Last, but not least, the joy of watching our beloved Seahawks win the Superbowl.  Everyone in the house is still on a high from the amazement that OUR team won the Lombardi Trophy.  It's been fun.

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