Nov 19, 2013

using up those vacation days

The random weekend getaway when Ryan has a few vacation days left for the year. 

That one hotel that we thought we were staying at for our 5 year anniversary but a little mix-up left us in a dive hole.... well, we finally made our reservations in the correct little hotel right off the beach this time. When you have a baby, the less driving you have to do THE BETTER. 

Side story: Ryan loves Denny's. And we've made a habit to go once every time we go over to Cali. Why? I don't know. Ryan loves those grand slam breakfasts and he knows that we never go when we're home. I asked to go to a place called Kono's, right off the pier, for our first morning. I've always wanted to eat there, but during the summer months the line wraps down the sidewalk and I pitty the fool who would actually wait in such a ridiculously long line. But then there was the side of me that thought, "Any place where people stand in line that long for breakfast, it must be something special." Thanks to being there off season AND to the time change which allowed us to be up and ready by 630am, we were able to eat at Kono's with hardly any line. 

Important note, they only take cash. We made the mistake our first time when we didn't have enough cash and we're like...

" uhhh.... can you tell this is our first time and that we're lame tourists who didn't know??"

But the guy was cool and said we could bring the money back later, which we did because we went again the next morning, and the next morning after that. That's right. We went every day for breakfast! And when I asked Ryan if he wanted to go to Denny's and he said

 "No that's ok, we can go to Kono's again if you want," 
I felt pretty pleased the Denny tradition had gone out the window. I replied,
"No it's okay, we can go to Denny's. I know how much you love it."

I'm twisted okay? I just wanted to him hear say that he thought Kono's tasted much better and he wanted Kono's more than Denny's and he's so happy I suggested that place and that I'm the best wife ever. Is that so much to ask? haha. Well, he admitted it. It tasted much better, which is not a surprise. 
Case and point: go eat at Kono's. Oh goodness. Drool. 

Lincoln still isn't a fan of the sand. He runs to the end of our beach blanket, touches the sand, pulls his hand away and cringes, then runs away. It's rather cute, actually. Everything he does is cute though. :) He was a trooper as always, except for the night when we went to Joe's and ordered a huge bucket of crab. Of course the one time when our hands are messy and our dinner requires some serious "hands-on" to eat, Lincoln is trying to crawl out of the high chair, choking on a pear, throwing silverware, throwing up pear over the floor, and crying. I don't think we scarfed food down that fast in so long. 

Nov 12, 2013

chickpea curry

I've been meaning to do an update with Ryan's cleanse /healthy eating/ doctor's appointments etc. If you missed that post you can read it HERE. Anyway, the month was definitely a challenge. I felt like I was always in the kitchen, which was to be expected. When you're eating healthier at home, there's more preparation involved.

There are some dishes we really loved that will become regular dishes in this home. I'm planning on going back and making some freezer dinners with those recipes to cut back on time in the kitchen. I'd rather have one hectic crazy busy day in the kitchen cooking with a few easy weeks of meals, than preparing something new every other day. EVENTUALLY.... and I mean..... eventually..... I will have a big list of these freezer meals I'll share with you all. :)

This was a recipe we scarfed down...literally. Maybe it was the change in spices that added major variety to our dinners. We both love Indian food... who doesn't?... so this dish really hit the spot. And it scored a huge bonus with me because it was easy, fast, and not too many ingredients. This will be on my list for freezer dinners.

Chickpea Curry
vegan, gf

1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tbs oil ( i used coconut oil)
2 cups white mushrooms, roughly chopped
1 -15ozcan chopped tomatoes
1 can coconut milk
2 -15oz cans cooked chickpeas

2 tsp curry powder
2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper powder

In a large pot, heat the oil on medium. Add the garlic, onion, sprinkle a little salt to help onions soften faster. Once onions are translucent, add chopped mushrooms and spices and cook for a few minutes until mushrooms soften and release juices. Then, throw in the tomatoes with it's juice, coconut milk, and chickpeas. Cover and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

Serve over rice! I would have really loved some naan with it as well. NEXT TIME!

Ryan is in the process of having blood work, tests, and an ultrasound done. There wasn't any improvement with his joints after a month, although we're both aware months could pass before we see any changes.....or no changes. We are carrying on with healthier eating but not as extreme. We are not vegan. We like meat, we like dairy. To cut those out permanently is not realistic and, in moderation, we feel just fine having them in our diet. :) But we are aware of how much we were eating and are cutting back on them. Ryan has committed to cutting back on soda, especially diet soda with the aspartame. He told me numerous times how he had more energy without the soda this past month. I was crossing my fingers he would eliminate it entirely, but unfortunately that was a big fat no. But a soda or two a week is a huge improvement from where we were before this change. I'll still have a bunch of recipes to share from that month so I'll keep them coming for anyone who cares to try them. :)

Nov 6, 2013

family hike

I'm singing to myself, "It's the most wonderful time of the be in Arizona!"
It's mother nature saying thank-you for putting up with the excessive heat this summer. And the mountains right along our house have been glaring down on us to come hike them. And we did! And we will again! Lincoln fell asleep in his carrier and was out for half of the hike. Must be nice while someone carries you to the top for you to enjoy the view, and then fall asleep on our way down. We're happy to do so, Lincoln. :)

Nov 4, 2013

7 month milestones and some really good advice

Lincoln turned 7 months this month. Yep! 7 WHOLE months and about 7 inches of hair! jk. 
This has been my favorite stage, especially since he's mastered clapping. There's Ryan and I standing in front of him, wide-eyed, clapping and cheering YAYYY!!!! And soon to follow, Lincoln will join in and clap with us. Sometimes it takes some concentration, sometimes it just flows naturally for him...either way, he's the best at it. 
I took his 7 month pictures, but he despised just laying there, especially since he is a crawling machine. So I pulled the whole, "clapping and yayyy!" card on him and he actually bought into it. All the pictures I have of him for his 7 months is him clapping, which is perfectly suiting for him at this time. 

Did I mention he's part Canadian? Ok no, not really. We're Americans here and proud of it! But he must be getting some Canadian influence from somewhere because a majority of his talking sounds like this
 (in crescendo)
eh? EH! EEHHH!

And another milestone???
He stood up on his own!!! it may have been only TWO full seconds. But he STOOD UP!!! 
My clapping-standing-Canadian, eh!

And here's some advice for the Parenthood Club, I haven't had one of these in awhile but this is a good one, I PROMISE. 

1. What to do if your child appears to have poor circulation in his knees?
I had Lincoln sitting on my lap when I looked down at his knees and shins. I immediately panicked, his legs looked like the circulation was being cut off, a musky grey color. I checked the capillary refill time (the nurse side of me kicked in) but it was fine.What the?? Upon closer examination, I realized, the musky grey color in his legs was actually a light layer of dirt he picked up from crawling around the kitchen floors!!!!!
DISGUSTING RIGHT?? but a huge relief that it wasn't anything else. But still, DISGUSTING!

So pretty much, if you can't figure out why your baby's legs are cyanotic looking, check the cleanliness of your floors. I now have Linc's chubby dirty legs as my indicator to mop. :)


I owe my parents BIG time. "I owe ya one" is becoming a frequent comment to my parents as of lately.. especially my dad who has helped babysit on Fridays while I cover some shifts at the hospital. He's quite a natural with Lincoln and I'm grateful they're able to spend some time with each other. If Ryan gets transferred out of Phoenix I'll be heartbroken to have Lincoln away from his papa and nana, who also double-duty quite nicely as his babysitters. :) My dad even stayed the night last Monday so Ryan and I could go to a concert. I made it up to him by making him breakfast the following morning before he left for work and packed him a lunch to take too. He even admitted to having a good night's sleep because he had the guest bed all to himself instead of mom hogging  taking more than her fair share of the bed at home. :) Love you mom.

Anyway, the concert was awesome. I was able to break out my cowboy boots that I've worn like 5 times in the past 10 years so that's always exciting. We had lawn seats, but we still had an awesome view and liked having a big blanket to give us more space. We laughed at how territorial everyone was in the lawn section. The bigger the blanket, the more space you claim for your area and we were the ones with the queen sized blanket!!! HA HA HA HA

And  a cool photo I found. One of their songs included a patriotic verse and they had some Veterans come out. The crowd went crazy with US pride and the photo I take of them onstage showed a guy in front of us saluting.

Great concert!