Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Lasagna Dinner Menu

Alright, I am going to start this and hopefully some of you will follow! Tonight's Dinner Menu: Whole Wheat Lasagna, Light Caesar Salad and Whole Wheat Garlic Bread.

Lasagna Ingredients:
3/4 lb. extra lean ground beef (I used 96/4; You could use Ground Turkey)
1 spoonful of minced garlic (I used from the jar; You could use 3 Cloves of Fresh Pressed Garlic)
Several Shakes of Italian Seasoning
1 jar (26 oz.) spaghetti sauce
1 egg (I used 1/4C of Egg Beaters Egg Substitute)
1 container (16 oz.) 2% Low Fat or Fat Free Cottage Cheese(I used Fat Free)
1/4 cup KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese
9 lasagna noodles ( I used Oven Ready Whole Wheat; there is No Boiling Involved with these just pop them straight to the oven. If not using Oven ready you need to Boil them as directed on the Box)
2 cups KRAFT 2% Milk Shredded Reduced Fat Mozzarella Cheese, divided

Pre-Heat Oven to 375 Degrees.

Put Ground Beef, Garlic and Italian Seasoning in Skillet. Cook at Medium to Medium-High Heat until No longer Pink and the Beef Crumbles. Pour Tomato sauce in with ground beef and let simmer on Low heat for 5 minutes. While simmering Mix Cottage Cheese, Egg and Parmesan Cheese in a small mixing bowl.

Grease a 13x9 Baking Dish. Pour 1/2 Cup of Ground Beef - Tomato Sauce Mix in the Bottom of the Baking Dish. Top with 3 Lasagna Noodles, 1/2 of Cottage Cheese Mixture, 1/3 of Remaining Sauce and 1/2 Cup of Mozzarella Cheese. Repeat Order Again. Top with 3 Noodles, Remaining Sauce and Remaining Mozzarella Cheese. Cover with Foil and Bake for 40 Minutes. Remove Foil and Bake an Additional 5 Minutes or Until Cheese is Brown and Bubbling. The Lasagna will Serve 9, so most of you will have Left Overs.

Toss Together Romaine Lettuce, Light or Fat Free Caesar Dressing and Croutons for Salad.

Butter Whole Wheat Bread (I use Country Crock Light) and sprinkle with Garlic Salt. Pop under the Broiler or if cooking for just a few (Like Myself) put them in the toaster! Enjoy!


Alright for all of you with the itty-bitty ones, I found a new trick for getting mine to eat veggies! He was doing really good eating whatever I gave him and then he decided to turn picky. I am not buying baby food anymore so to get veggies in, I bought a bag of frozen mixed veggies. You can even get a huge Organic bag at Costco for a reasonable price. Cook them however you normally would, my lazy self puts them in my Pampered Chef Black Microwave Bowl thingamajig, and pops them in the microwave. After you get them cooked, pour a can of cream of chicken soup over it. Puree to whatever texture stage your little one is at and then pour them into ice cube trays. Freeze and then you can pop out however many cubes you might need when it is feeding time. Mine takes three cubes for example. You might need to run a little warm water over the bottom of the tray so that it doesn't crack. Ryder devours it and I think the Cream of Chicken is the key. Anyway, just thought I'd pass this tid bit along and hopefully it will help if any of you are in the same boat! Remember you'll need ice cube trays and a food processor/blender/puree tool! Also, in light of my blog yesterday regarding dinner, I think I am going to start posting my dinner recipes on the nights I get dinner accomplished! Fresh ideas are always good! Happy Veggie Making!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Mood Swings...

How can the mood of a 1-year old change so quickly? How can you be happy one minute and screaming mad the next? We were smelling flowers and rolling pumpkins in the yard one minute and kicking our legs in a fit the next. It is so challenging to figure out what the problem is when they can't tell you. Are you hurt, are you thirsty, are you hungry, are you dirty? Offering solutions to each of these and we are still mad. It is so frustrating because I want to fulfill needs and make him happy, but I guess that is not possible all the time! Calmly ignoring and leaving the room seems to change his tune a lot of the times, but I don't know if this is the right answer. I know things only get tougher, but sometimes I can't wait for the day when he can verbalize his needs!

On another note, what to cook for dinner? Do you ever run out of ideas! That is frustrating, too! I am about to search foodnetwork! Hmmmm.....

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Party Pictures!

It's Party Time!

We had Ryder's Party for him today! Wow, never realized how much work having a Birthday Party for a kiddo is! I am much more appreciative to my parents now! LOL! There were so many people here, but we had a a really good time! Ryder got lots of toys and clothes! Next week I'll have to sort through the old to bring in the new! He got a little fussy towards the end and didn't want to open any of his presents, but he LOVED his Cake!!!! We are so blessed to have so many family and friends who love this little man and came to share this special time with him! I spent prior week baking cookies, making chocolate suckers, 60 Cupcakes and icing them all...so we are all "sweeted" out!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Ryder a Year in Pictures

Happy Birthday, Ryder!

Our Baby Boy turns One today! My goodness where did the year go! I am supposed to be happy today, but I am actually a little sad that the time has gone by so fast. Oh Ryder, it is hard to remember how little you must have been on that first day weighing in at almost exactly 7 lbs.

Daddy said that the Nurses thought the scale was broken because you looked so much bigger than that! You let out that first scream even when Dr. Z didn't want you to and a Nurse came to tell me that you were the loudest baby they'd ever had in the Nursery. At least the Hospital was new! They said you couldn't hear, but you proved them wrong there, too! That is Ryder. You are such a strong boy!

This year you learned so many things and so have we. In the beginning you loved to be swaddled up tight and to have your face covered. So many nights, Daddy would watch TV, while walking circles around the house with you in his sling. Must have made you feel safe. The swing was your best friend and it better move fast. We had to trade with Grandma because our new swing was too slow. You loved the noise from your sleep sheep and you still sleep with him today. It never ceases to amaze me how when you wake up from your sleep you turn his little heartbeat on to soothe you. We also learned that you love to be outside which works out good for us! You love the water and have always been excited when bath time comes around. For Thanksgiving you gave us a present and started sleeping for 8 hours through the night and even though you were fussy leading up to bed time, I was so proud of you!

Once you learned to roll you've never stopped being on the move. In the beginning you used to get stuck in all sorts of crazy places, like under Daddy's chair or the TV stand. We didn't think you'd ever crawl because you could just roll to wherever you'd like. In April you started sitting up like a big boy and even though that was just 5 months ago it seems like a lifetime.

In May you started crawling just in time for our beach trip to Destin. What a crazy place for us to take a 8 month old baby, but you had fun and learned how to pull up on furniture. You didn't like the sand, and your teeth hurt really bad...but you loved swimming in the pool and riding in Daddy's pack. You learned the meaning of the word "No" about this time too. The minute we said it you would stop in your tracks, pucker your lips and cry. How could this word hurt you so much? You still do it today and I could just eat you looking that cute.

This summer you learned to use your hands to feed yourself and to drink from a cup. I miss starting our mornings giving you a bottle in my lap. You are almost walking, although it has been a clumsy process. I know you'll get it down just like you do everything else. Always know how much we love you and although we have only known you for a year, we can not ever imagine how we lived life without you!

Mommy took me for Ice Cream on my Birthday, Yummy!

Thank you, Mommy!!!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Stan Crawford Music

One of Matt's very best friends from A&M has a new album being released soon! It is so good and I thought I would give our Stan some love. Please check out his "Yummy" Website. I love you, Matt! I have a link to it under sites we love. We love you Stan and wish you the Best of Luck!!!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Our fist big Ouch!

Oh my, what a horrible blogger I have been! Seems like we've been running here and running there and although there is tons of stuff going on in life, I haven't had the time to sit down and type it out or snap a picture! I came down with a stomach bug and today is the first day I have felt semi-normal. I haven't had a bug that put me out that hard and fast in awhile. I literally could not get out of bed. I thank God for my husband! He took care of Ryder and all the household chores while I laid in bed thinking I'd probably be better off dead. O.k., it wasn't that bad, but puking is just the worst!

To top the cake, Ryder fell and got his first big boo boo. He is trying to walk, although I haven't seen many attempts since the face dive. A concrete walk isn't the best place to try out unsteady legs. He face planted on the cement and it looks horrible. The first day I thought it looked bad, but it turned from bad to uglier the second day. I felt/feel horrible...everyone always says that you hurt worst than your child when they get hurt and you never truly believe it until it happens. My poor baby boy!

Anyway, he turns the big No. 1 on Thursday!! So, we are getting ready for that! Hope you are all doing well and have a wonderful first day of Fall! (Yippee!!! My favorite season!)

Just a few Hours after the Face Plunge...

Exhausted after the Fall and his Cousin's Birthday Party.....

How do those faint pink spots turn into this the next day? At least he is all smiles!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

2.5 Weeks to One Year

In 2.5 weeks our little boy will turn 1! It still all seems like a blur sometimes... wasn't I just in the delivery room having him? Really it was such a long time ago! We've started planning for his birthday party, finished the invitations and mailed them out this weekend! It all makes me sad, but happy. I am so wishy-washy...it makes me want another and then I think Oh Gosh...how in the WORLD could I handle Ryder and another (not to mention still consult part-time and keep the house going)! The thoughts run through my head all of the time. I am such a planner and I always try to make everything perfect in my head and on paper. I find myself dazing off, running everything through my head...yet nothing seems to work exactly like I plan. At any rate, just thought typing it all out might make things a little more clear. Do you ever get rid of the puppy syndrome (as Matt calls it)? Do you always think..."Oh to have a tiny little baby would be so wonderful"...or do you outgrow this knowing that this is when you are done having kids. Maybe, this feeling never goes away and that is why the Duggar family is on baby #18. What is the answer, how do we know when our family is complete?? I ask Matt this and he says just to pray about it...God will tell us the answer. We prayed long and hard about Ryder and that is why he is here. Anyway, thanks for listening...I promise my next blog won't be so weird! LOL!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Muffins make me smile...

Eating a Muffin at Austin Java...his face says it was yummy!