Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Page Moving

Just a quick update to let everyone know I am in the process of creating a new blog.  Please hop over to my blog page and follow me there.  Now that I've figured out how to move everything over, all my new recipes attempts, twin updates and random ramblings will be over on my Mom 2 Miracle Twins page.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

It's Not A Cake Walk

Anyone that thinks being a "Stay At Home Mom" is easy, I have news for you, you are wrong.  Anyone that thinks being a mom to twins is a cake walk, you are so sadly mistaken.  Being a SAHM is messy.  It's exhausting. It's days that start before the sun is up with screaming babies, dirty dishes, mountains of laundry and longing for a 20 minute shower or 15 more minutes of sleep.

Yesterday was one of those days that I wished I could have gone back to bed and started the day over again.  Between an overly fussy baby girl, which is very rare, and an overly active baby boy, I felt like a rubber band that had been stretched as far as it could stretch without snapping. You know that feeling when you are wrapping a rubber band around something and it snaps and stings your hand? Yup, that sums up how I was feeling.  I try so hard to be the ideal mom and a terrific wife.  I beat myself up when the dishes get left in the sink over night.  I cringe when I see two days of laundry accumulating in front of the washer. With that being said, my living room floor is constantly covered in toys, blankets, spit up and empty baby bottles. Everyone tells me that I need to give myself a break and not be so hard on myself, but I can't help to want to get everything done every day.  Reality of it is, with two teething babies, one starting to crawl and one wanting to walk (hence the "perma-bruise on his forehead), I can't do it all. I am incredibly lucky to have a husband that is an outstanding dad. He gets up in the middle of the night to make bottles, he changes diapers and he helps with the cooking and cleaning on his days off, but for some reason I feel like we are never caught up.

I've come to terms with the fact that this is life and I need to just roll with the punches.  There are going to be good days and there are going to be days that are absolute crap, that's life.  If you are a mom, whether a SAHM or a working mom (huge props to you), I'm sure you can relate.  I know I'm not alone on this wild crazy ride of mommy-hood.  When I found out we were having twins, I thought "shoot, I've got this".  Who was I kidding? Having twins is definitely the hardest thing I've ever done, but it also the most rewarding. Hearing them try to say mama, their huge piercing blue eyes and smiles that will light up the darkest of rooms, all incredible moments that nobody can ever take away from me.  As for the bad days, I'm trying to just chalk them up to Gods little tests for me.

When I start to question myself and whether or not I was cut out for this job, I look at pictures like these and I know that while I may not be a perfect mom, I'm perfect to them and that's all that really matters.

Friday, January 3, 2014

A Few of My Favorite Things

Time for a confession. I have an addiction to nice things. Whether it's purses, boots, sunglasses or wine, I'll be the first to admit, I'm a snob. This wouldn't be a problem if I was still gainfully employed, living on a dual income with no kids. But alas, that is not the case.

We went from two decent incomes, traveling when we wanted, buying purses and sunglasses at Louis Vuitton, down to one income and two kids. I hope you aren't reading this thinking that I'm complaining about my kids because that is most definitely not the case. I would give up everything I have for those two beautiful babies.  I just thought you all would like to see a different side of me so I thought I would share some of my favorite things with you along with things I long to see happen in our lives to raise our children in the best way possible.

Wine, yes I love wine, but only good wine.  I grew up in the Napa Valley and couldn't stand this delicious beverage given to us by the unassuming little grape until I started working at two high end restaurants in Napa.  Then that all changed.  While my husband will most likely drink any bottle you bring over to our house, I'm sorry to say I will not. I've been very spoiled when it comes to the world of Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel.  My mom has worked in the industry for most of my life and my dad is a personal trainer to owners of some of the best wineries in the valley. 

This is one of my very favorites. A Caymus Vineyards Cab. 
Bold and big bodied, just like me!

My favorite place for accessories.  The name says it all.
Sure it means I have a purse that only comes out when the sun is shining
And I sport it with jeans and a hoodie, but hey, it's who I am.

My favorite vacation moment. 
We have been fortunate to travel to some gorgeous places. 
We have watched the sun rise over white sandy beaches in Aruba.
We have held a sloth and purchased emeralds in Colombia.
And we have drank the most amazing coffee in Guatemala
But my favorite memory came during this trip to Mexico. 
We had just traversed through the Sierra Madre mountains 
on a series of 12 zip lines and rappelled down a water fall 
to land in this beautiful spot.

After reading all that about me, if you don't know me, 
You'll probably be surprised to learn that one of my favorite hobbies is hunting. 
Yup, you read right, 
I'm a Louis Vuitton carrying, shotgun & rifle slinging country girl. 

I've been known to wear pricey sunglasses out deer hunting.
I've been on the receiving end of funny looks from old men when I let my
English Setter, Bandit, out of the back seat of a bright red Saab
(Which has since been traded in for the soccer mom SUV)
To hunt pheasants and chukar.
And I love turkey hunting a heck of a lot more than I like to shop.

Then there is my two favorite little humans on the planet. 
Seriously, they couldn't be more beautiful!

I want to raise these two with good old fashion values.
I want them to know there is so much more to life 
than the new video game or iPhone.
I want them to play outside until the street lights come on. 
Actually, that's a lie. 
I want them to grow up on a huge piece of property where there are no street lights.
I want them to know that hard work pays off.

I want them to grow up on a property that has this for a view. 
I want to give them the best life we possibly can. 
I know that means bringing them up with values.
It doesn't come from having the fancy purse or sunglasses. 
It comes from quality family bonding, proper guidance 
and respect for one another. 

So there you have it, some of my favorite things. 
Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Adios 2013

I seriously cannot believe another year is in the books.  While there were a handful of sad times during this year, nothing, absolutely nothing can over shadow the fact that 2013 will always be one of the greatest years I've ever had.  Sure, my house is still a construction zone and I'm 50 pounds overweight, but I have the two most beautiful, perfect babies I could have ever imagined.   Here's a brief glimpse back at 2013.

Our English Setter, Bandit.  
He laid on my belly like this every day during my pregnancy.

My mom and her best friend threw me the most amazing baby shower
 at Silverado Vineyards in Napa.

I dreamed about the day Shannon Mae Photography would do my maternity photos

May 8, 2013. Eviction day for the twins!

I will never forget this moment

Or this one!

Wow, so tiny! About to walk through the door for the first time.

Meeting Great Grandma Sue aka GG

Our first days at home

She was so tiny!

Meema came to stay with us for a week.
I'd like to see her try to hold them both now!

 Bald Papa multitasking

The hardest moment for me so far in my life came
when we said goodbye to this man.
My grandfather's life was cut way too short
when he passed away on June 19 of cancer.

I chopped my hair off

Peyton won a baby model search facebook contest for a clothing designer

The twins went on their first camping trip
This was also their first trip to the beach

They were baptized

Some of the greatest and funniest moments in 2013 were because of these girls.
My life would seriously be a much more boring place without them.
The laughs are endless with the three of us and
my world is a better place because of them.

2013 also brought a beautiful friend back into my life.
My year was definitely full of love and friendship.
I couldn't be happier.

There were SO many more bright spots in my year.  This is a very brief glimpse at my year and I could go on and on but I've got bottles to make and dinner to start!

Happy New Year to everyone! I hope 2014 is a wonderful year for all!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Cheddar Broccoli Soup - A Pioneer Woman Recipe

I love soup.  Especially velvety, creamy soups loaded with cheese.  I didn't have half & half so I used 6 cups of whole milk, versus the 4 cups of whole milk and 2 cups of half & half.  You will need the following:
  • 1 whole Onion, Diced
  • 1 stick 1/2 Cup Butter
  • 1/3 cup Flour
  • 4 cups Whole Milk
  • 2 cups Half-and-half
  • 4 heads Broccoli Cut Into Florets
  • 1 pinch Nutmeg
  • 3 cups Grated Cheese (mild Cheddar, Sharp Cheddar, Jack, Etc.)
  • Small Dash Of Salt (more If Needed)
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • Chicken Broth If Needed For Thinning (I didn't need it)

This is definitely not a soup for you health-nuts

I love the smell of onions sautéing in butter!

 It took about  40 minutes on low for my broccoli to get to the proper tenderness.

When a recipe calls for three cups of sharp cheddar cheese, 
you really can't go wrong!

I forgot to take a final picture of it before we devoured it.  Let's just say, it was delicious!  I did use my immersion blender after adding the cheese and blended it down so there wasn't huge chunks of broccoli.

Preparation Instructions
Melt butter in a pot over medium heat, then add the onions. Cook the onions for 3 to 4 minutes, then sprinkle the flour over the top. Stir to combine and cook for 1 minute or so, then pour in milk and half-and-half. Add nutmeg, then add broccoli, a small dash of salt, and plenty of black pepper.

Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the broccoli is tender. Stir in cheese and allow to melt.
Taste seasonings and adjust if needed. Then either serve as is, or mash it with a potato masher to break up the broccoli a bit, or transfer to a blender in two batches and puree completely. (If you puree it in a blender, return it to the heat and allow to heat up. Splash in chicken broth if needed for thinning.)
I served it with fresh french bread and it made the perfect cozy dinner on a cool night!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Easy Peasy Salsa

About 12 years ago my hubby and I were out on a houseboat with my brother and their friends on Lake Shasta.  His friend Chad made this delicious salsa and when I saw how easy it was, it became my go to recipe.  In fact, I've never made another salsa.

All you need is a food processor and the following ingredients:
7-9 Roma Tomatoes (remove the inside meat & seeds)
Cilantro (varied amount depending on your taste preference)
1 Jalapeno or Serrano Chili (with or without seeds depending on your heat preference)
1/2 Yellow Onion
2 Garlic Cloves
1 Can of Mexican Stewed Tomatoes
Salt and lime to taste

Cut and deseed jalapeno, cut into quarters
Add Cilantro (I use about a half of a bunch without the stems)
Add roughly chopped onion

 Cut tomatoes in half, removing the inside "meat"
Roughly chop two cloves of garlic
Add can of stewed tomatoes, slightly drained
Add the juice of a half a lime
Add a pinch or two of sea salt

Pulse the ingredients in your food processor to the desired consistency.

Ta-da! Serve with your favorite tortilla chips!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Thanks Pinterest....

What happens when you are a stay at home mom and realize that your twins' first birthday is just over 4 months away?  Prior to Pinterest, you'd probably start thinking about a theme or just file it away in the back of your brain that it's coming up and know you'll need to start planning something in a couple months.  But no, now, thanks to Pinterest, I've turned into a crazy person looking up ideas, planning and scheming.  Yes, I've already picked a date, now let's hope the weather cooperates because let's face it, my house isn't big enough if it decides to rain. It's going to be a Boots & Bows BBQ to celebrate these little munchkins.  Is it crazy that I've already picked a date and a theme? I don't think so.  Crazy would be waiting til the last minute to pull something together.

Look at these eyes! No, I did not alter them.

On another note, I mentioned that I pretty much idolize The Pioneer Woman recently.  I made a few of her recipes this week (both desserts).  The first was her peanut butter pie.  I cut the recipe back from 1 and 1/4 cups of powdered sugar to 1 cup and it was still incredibly sweet.  I think I will attempt it again but will be the powdered sugar back even further.  The second one was a non-traditional blackberry cobbler.  This one was a keeper for sure.  My hubby said it was the best dessert I've made.  I personally cannot wait to make it next summer with fresh peaches.  Sorry I don't have pictures of either, I spaced on taking photos of them in all the chaos of Christmas.

Happy Friday!