Sunday, July 15, 2012

Sunday Boring Day

It's been a fun week at the Duggan house. First off, I had my birthday. The boys got me a BluRay player and  the Lord of the Rings movie. We had hamburgers, hot dogs and enjoyed some pie from Village Inn while watching the movie. (78//////////////////////////////////////////////////gtfvnhvcszvxd3z$a --Apparently, Viktard likes to blog too).

Wednesday night I made a new recipe, from here. I first mixed up the "cream of" stuff in a container. I think I figured out the recipe will make something like 9 "cans" of soup and I had almost everything on hand that I needed.
My Adapted version:

1 cup non-fat dried milk
3/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup Chicken Boullion
4 Tablespoons freeze dried minced onions
1 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon pepper
(For the equivalent of one can of condensed cream soup, mix 1/3 cup dry mix with 1 1/4 cup water. Cook until thick)

For the casserole, I ended up using:
1 cooked chicken breast (I cut it in chunks instead of shredding),
a few slices of bacon (I cut it up using my kitchen shears prior to frying, so much easier that way and they seem to cook more evenly).
Equivalent to one can of soup (about 1/3 cup mixed with 1 1/4 cup water, cooked until thick).
2 cups of macaroni, cooked
Cheese (I used a handful of mozarella mixed in with the noodles etc, then sprinkled some cheese on top while it was baking).

I baked it in the oven just until the cheese was melted since everything was hot when I put it together, and it was so yummy. The left overs were good too, I had some for lunch the next day. My vegan friend said it looked/smelled good, and he recommended putting some buttered breadcrumbs on top next time (Hey, he wasn't always vegan!)

Our friends, Aaron and Julia had their baby on Tuesday as well, after something like 30 hours of labor, Theo Maximus Bazal is here.

Theo Maximus Bazal 8 lbs 14 oz and 22 inches long. Beautiful baby boy!
We got to visit with them on Thursday night for a couple hours, eat dinner and snuggle with the little guy. He is beautiful and I can't wait to see him grow up! He even let me take a couple pictures of him with his eyes open! Julia and Aaron are taking on their new roles as parents like champs.

The rest of the week was pretty low key, Friday night we just hung around the house, Saturday J and Spenny went and had lunch and got a haircut for J while E and I hung out at home, at lunch and took naps. When Daddy and Spenny got home, I went and ran some errands before we went to see Papa Dave's church band play at Ankeny's Summer Fest. We got to hang out with our friends Baby Liam and Stacey, Nana and Papa, as well as Carrie, Tim and Nolan. Good weather for it, it was hot, but there was a breeze and we all came prepared with snacks and juice boxes to keep everyone entertained. Today we just hung out at home, I organized the laundry area some, cleaned a bit and made some dry laundry detergent. I read a short book I got on my Kindle that talks about ways to declutter and organize, and one of the goals is get rid of 10 items a day from your life. Sounds like a lot, but really, when you start the process, 10 items goes pretty quickly. IE: I went through my "Mail" pile, which is really just a bunch of coupons, mailers and a couple odd bills that I need to sort and never want to. I did that first thing this morning though and ended up getting rid of about 15 items, just like that. When I cleaned up the laundry closet I was able to get rid of even more items, so it sounds like a big, daunting task, it's really not. And also, the 10 items isn't necessarily to throw away, but can also be to donate, recycle, sell, etc.

This week should be another busy one, we are in the process of figuring out what Spenny wants for his birthday, and what he wants to DO for his birthday. I'm thinking either Incredible Pizza or the Zoo, we'll see what the weather is like before we decide likely. Then, Saturday morning bright dark and early, I am flying off to Colorado to spend a long weekend with my cousin Kim, so excited! We're going to see Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw in concern and I have no idea what else will be in store for us!

Monday, July 9, 2012

last day of 27

It seems weird that I'm turning 28 this year. It doesn't seem like it's that big of a deal, but it's really only TWO years from 30. Not that excited about 30, but looking forward to see what 28 brings me. And really excited to go to Colorado in a couple weeks, hopefully losing some more weight over the next year and trying new things. 

Last year on my birthday, I lost my Grandpa Fran. He was a huge part of me growing up and he lived a wonderful, long life. Even when he was dying of cancer, he was the most positive person I knew. I remember one time we were talking and I said I was sorry he had cancer. His response? "Why? If it's not me, it would just be someone else; might as well make the best of it!" Before going into surgery, he was all grins, during his treatments, he would call me from the center where he was staying to tell me about how great the nurses were, the people he was meeting and how he felt so lucky to have the experience. (Really? LUCKY to have cancer Grandpa?!) I remember at his funeral we were talking to all of the people that knew him from all different aspects, neighbors, co-workers from the YMCA, church friends, horse people, everyone had a happy story to share, and I honestly don't think there was a person that knew him that didn't like him. I would like to think that Grandpa Fran and Grandma Sharon are up there singing their songs, and maybe he'll visit Grandpa Emory at an auction.  I also hope they are growing a garden, for fresh green beans so his whiskers keep growing and he is riding one of his horses. Grandpa, you were a wonderful man and I miss you so much. I wish I would have taken more advantage of spending time with you when I had the chance, but thank you for helping me be who I am today. I know I got my (mostly) positive outlook from you, and I appreciate it. 

Happy birthday to me, hopefully this year I'll have someone to share it with :) More news on that tomorrow, I hope!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Bucket List

I'm turning 30 in 2 years and 6 days. A while back I decided I was going to do a bucket list of 30 things to do before I'm 30 and started writing the list. Some of these I'm working on (I only have a few sodas a week now, since I've been drinking tea, I have my plane tickets already for my trip to Colorado, I've been doing the RAoK on a regular basis, I'm almost done with Season 1 of SATC...) and some will be harder to cross off, but I'm hoping that I get get at least the vast majority crossed off :)

 1. Go vegetarian for 6 weeks. (Can't go vegan...I'd miss my cheese!)
 2. Quit Soda
 3. Lose 15-20 pounds
 4. Go to Ikea
 5. Run a 10K
 6. Sing Karaoke
 7. Learn to Sew (With my new silhouette, that should be fun!)
 8. Travel more.
 9. Get my passport
10. Meet my newest niece.
11. Start College Savings funds for the boys
12. Get another Tattoo
13. and another.
14. Pay off all of our non-mortgage related debt/student loans
15. Go back to school
16. Do a Random Act of Kindness a week
17. Make photo books for the boys, one for each year
18. Get Married <3
19. Read 50 books (3 down!)
20. Hang pictures on our walls. (Don't laugh, we've lived here 18 months and have like 5 things hanging on our walls. In the whole house. And one of them is a clock.)
21. Re-Watch all of the Sex and the City episodes
22. Get my filing at work caught up (I haven't been caught up since before I went on maternity leave with Emerson....don't judge.)
23. Finish various projects that I have started up but not finished for various reasons, most of which aren't good ones
24. Hit at least 50 of the Top 100 in Des Moines Restaurants
25. Have drinks on a patio with my friends
26. Do more things as a family
27. Start doing my hair and makeup
28. Start wearing sunscreen on my face every day
29. Take a class for fun (Yoga, sewing, etc)
30. Be overall happy :)

Happy 4th of July!

The Fourth of July is probably my favorite holiday. I say probably, because it's hard to decide which excuse to dress up, decorate, etc is truly my favorite, but I've always loved it because it is A) in the summer B) My hometown made a big deal out of it C) It means my birthday is less than a week away D) Fireworks...ok, I could probably go on and on but I'll stop. :)

Today we headed over to Newton, J's hometown, to watch their parade. It's a long parade, but it's usually a lot of fun even if it is hotter than Hades. They start it off at 9:30 and I think today we left at 11ish, just as it was finishing. We hang out with J's mom's side of the family and just have fun. The kids love the candy and the little flags that Grandma brings for them to wave. It starts off with a tribute to the veterans. Every year it makes me a little misty eyed. I personally know a lot of veterans and I just don't think they always get the recognition they deserve. When they march through the town though, every stands and claps. The pride on the veterans' faces gets me. It's hot, the parade is long and they just keep marching. They even have floats for the ones that can't/don't want to walk. Some have what war they were a part of on the floats, others just march together, but, goosebumps and tears every time. This year I could blame it on my contacts ;) Anyway, the boys got some candy and they each ended up with a die cast car from the speedway and overall, had a great time. 

The rest of the day has been kinda lazy, the heat wore us out. While the boys were napping I spent a little time sunbathing (like 15 was too hot!) and then took a nap. After that, I took a shower and decided to make a DIY workout shirt that I found on pinterest from here. Turned out pretty cute, not too bad for a first timer! 

I think we're going to find something to fix for dinner and then maybe early to bed for all of us. Feels weird to be off in the middle of the week, but back to the grind tomorrow.

Hope everyone else has had a happy and safe 4th!