Friday, January 28, 2011

Some great purchases

Some great purchases I have made this month.........

I love these! They are beautiful, and a great accent to any dinner table. I purchased mine at Shopko for $24.99. They were originally like $55.00 (I think)
I just love getting bargains!

Ben and I have been trying to be more active, so I bought these stainless steel water bottles at Shopko. They are originally $7.99. I got them on sale for $2.99 and $1.99. I am going back to buy one for each of the kids. Ben, the kids, and myself did a bit of hiking this past Summer. Ben and I actually hiked to the top of squaw peak on the 4th of July, and watched the stadium of fire's fireworks from above. The fireworks were so low, and looked so tiny. It was a ton of fun! For those of you who have hiked up Provo Rock Canyon to the top of squaw peak, know that this is quite the hike! I hope to do more hiking with the family when the weather permits us to do so.  However, I will not be doing the Squaw Peak hike again until I'm more fit! Needless to say, it kicked my butt!
I got a compliment on my water bottle last night at Zumba :)

Not that I think I "Do Too Much". I just love the meditations, and reflections idea.

I bought this book for the kids at for $7.50. The kids absolutely love it! Mady had me read to her each of the recipes, and the ingredients. The kids love putting on their little aprons, and helping me cook. Yes, Marshall has an apron, too! :) I can't wait to make the recipes in this book with the kids! 

This is the biggest loser food scale. For those of you following Weight Watchers, or any diet for that matter, know how important it is to get exact measurements. Eyeballing is so inaccurate, and people usually tend to eat more, or less, than what they think they do. I purchased this on for a whopping $17.97. It has been a great purchase for me as I use it almost daily.
I purchased this Weight Watcher Essential Member Kit on for $24.95. After taxes, and shipping and handling, it came out to be $35.12. Shipping sure can be costly.

This is the NEW Weight Watchers PointsPlus Calculator. I purchased this on Ebay for $25.50. I actually got a good deal. I can't believe how high people are bidding for the NEW Weight Watchers supplies. They are only $11.95 on, but everytime I have looked they have been "out of stock".

I bought this Jillian Michael's Triple Chocolate Shake Protein Powder at Walmart for $10. I have never had protein shakes post-workout, so hopefully it helps. I have heard that it is best mixed in a blender with a banana and ice. 2 Points+ Values per serving. Hopefully it's not too gagish! ;)
I have been so anxious for the new season of the biggest loser. It started a few weeks ago, but I have yet to watch it. I have Zumba class during the time that it's airing. I don't have DVR, so I can't record it and watch it later. Actually..... I have not even turned on the TV this month other than to put a movie on for the kids, or to watch a Red box movie. I guess I'm just not up to par with the rest of the world just yet.... BUT I love it that way! :)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

My new obsession

My new obsession is.......
the new Weight Watchers Pointsplus program!
Pretty much ever since I found out about the new program, I've been on a total weight watchers craze. I signed up for the week free trial period on I ordered the food guide, dining out guide, and a 3 month food tracking journal. The website was "out of stock" for the new calculators (go figure that one). So, I went on ebay and purchased a new pointsplus calculator. Now I will be able to keep up with the "NEW", without paying the monthly fee. Once my free trial expires, I will still have access to weight watchers recipes, and the community board on their website (which I love), without paying the fee. (I so know, I'm so cheap) Ben and I were on the old plan up until Monday. I still have my supplies from when I joined weight watchers a couple years ago. Ben and I are currently following the new plan. Ben seriously has like nothing to lose. He's 20 pounds lighter than I am. I have been doing zumba on Tuesday and Thursday nights. I find that I have to drag my butt there some nights, but I have been making it to every class the past couple of weeks. There is a class that the same zumba instructor holds at her house Monday and Friday mornings at 6:15. I'm considering going those times instead of nights. Marshall is starting basketball, and his bball will be on Tuesday and Thursday nights. I don't want to miss his practices or games, so I won't be able to make it to the nightly classes if the times clash.

I have edited some previous recipe posts of mine, and have listed the WW PPV's for a couple of the recipes. I love the ww website because I can type in any recipe on the planet, and it will figure out the PPV's for me! I won't be able to do this once my free trial expires.
My goal is to lose 10 pounds a month. Ben and I have lost approx. 12 pounds each in the past 2 weeks. I know it won't always be like that though. Actually, it will probably never happen so dramatic again. A girl can wish though, right? If I lose 10 pounds each month, I will be to my goal weight by the first of July. THIS SUMMER! Can I do it? I guess we'll see! I need to motivate myself to workout more, and not just rely on the zumba classes. I have an elliptical that I'm currently using as a coat rack. Hmmmm..... looks like I need to dust it off, and get on it!

I will be doing rewards for myself along my weight loss journey. I haven't put it together yet, but it will look something like this:
185= 1 hr. massage
175= Night out with my DH (Darling Husband) Fancy dinner, movie, etc.
165= new outfit and month tanning pass
155= day at the salon. New hair, mani/pedi, facial
145= new wardrobe

I think I can, I think I can, I think I can..... Oh YES, I can!!
I just need to remember that I'm going to have to always comply with this healthier lifestyle. I want to teach my kids a healthy lifestyle while they are young, so they will have the tools they need to stay healthy through-out their life. Hopefully, with the knowledge they will gain, they won't have to battle their weight as hard as I have had to.

On a side note, I met my awesome new visiting teachers today. One of them has her bachelors in exercise science. We had a good chat. I got some good tips, and motivation from her. I will share with you what I have found to work, and not work for me through this whole "healthier lifestyle" journey!

My thought for the day: If I let myself go then I'm the only one to blame!
So, there's no time like the present to make a better "healthier" future for my family, and myself.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Make it-love it!

To all you crafty ladies, this ones for you! I found another cool site! This site has tons of crafty, cute, and fun ideas!

They also have clothes, cakes, and TONS more!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Weekly meals with recipes

I have been trying to make a weekly meal plan. On Monday I make a list of meals for the week, I make my shopping list, and head to the store to do some shopping. Here are my weekly meals for this week with links to the recipes. Well most of them have recipes, anyway. The links all have pictures of the recipes. I won't buy a cookbook unless it has pictures in it. Unless a recipe is referred to me, I will rarely try a new recipe out that doesn't have a picture with it. I want to see what I'm going to make before I try it. I know, silly.

Monday (Tonight): Stuffed Bell Peppers
I have never made stuffed bell peppers. I won't be following any recipe. Tonight will be experiment night.

Tuesday: Broccoli Cheese and Potato Soup
Side: French bread for dipping
To get the recipe, click HERE

Wednesday: Shepherds Pie
To get the recipe, click HERE

Thursday: Cheesy Mac & Cheese
Side: Vegetable
A dinner night that the kids will love! The only substitute I will be making is using whole grain penne pasta, instead of regular.
To get the recipe, click HERE

Friday: Spaghetti.
Sides: Vegetable & salad.

Saturday: Slow-cooked Sweet Barbacoa Pork
Yum! I can't wait to try this
To view the recipe, click HERE

Sunday is Ben's Birthday!! He has been asking for the chicken pot pie that I make. So, on Sunday I will be making Homemade Chicken Pot Pie, and Chocolate cake!
To get the recipe for the Chicken Pot Pie, click HERE
To get the recipe for the Chocolate cake and frosting, click HERE 

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Skinny Taste

For those who are on weight watchers, or for those who are looking for healthy fantastic recipes, check this blog out. Super cool! It has all the nutritional information, and pointsplus values, calculated for you.

For a recipe that I'm going to try out, click HERE

Friday, January 21, 2011

Cheesy Chicken, Bacon & Avocado Quesadillas with WW pointsplus values

One word: YUM-O!!
I made these the other night for dinner. They were delicious! I love avocados, and bacon. So, once the two ingredients unite, I'm in pure bliss.
I am a publisher on a food blog, so I posted the recipe there. If you would like the recipe click HERE 
Also, check out other recipes on the blog! There are tons of melt-in-your-mouth recipes!
I got this recipe off Check it out! Tons of fun things on there!
Weight Watchers calculations:
Estimated 4 servings. Serving size: 1 (Yum-O!) quesadilla
If made with regular mild cheddar cheese, 1 cup (1/4 cup per quesadilla) =
15 pointsplus values
If made with reduced-fat mild cheddar cheese, 1 cup (1/4 cup per quesadilla) =
14 pointsplus values
If made with fat-free mild cheddar cheese, 1 cup (1/4 cup per quesadilla) =
13 pointsplus values

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Smiles for the soul = kids cuteness

I write down cute things that the kids say, and I put them in their baby book. That way they can read them through-out their life. Here are some saying from the past year.
Marshall is my 7 year old.
Madison aka Mady is my 4 year old.
Courtney is my 2 year old.
Part of Marshall's personal prayer, "Please help my pillow pet to never rip or the blanket that Mom made me, and I love it. Even all the money she spent on it. I love everyone, even the bad guys." Marshall has been telling me that he hates bad guys. I told him that we shouldn't hate anyone. He asked me why, and I told him the reason is because Jesus said love everyone. He's such a sweet boy!
Mady thinks the song "If you're happy and you know it" goes "If you're happy in your nose" So, she'll go around singing, "If you're happy in your nose clap your hands" Also, I heard this one once, "If you're happy in your nose, pick your nose!"
A conversation between Courtney and I: Me, "I'm sick, Courtney." Courtney, "Is you belly hot?"
Mady says to me, "I miss you every much!"
Mady says all the time, "I love you more than outer space.... deep!" There is a story behind this. Ben was telling the kids how much he loves Mommy and them. He was saying random things like that he loves us more than the sky.... more than deep outer space!" Ever since then she has been saying it.
Marshall says, "Mom, if you live in Spanish Fork that means you have to speak Spanish, and I don't know how to speak Spanish. How do you say please in Spanish?"
Ben asks Courtney, "What did you have for lunch, Courtney?" Her reply, "Food and maceeoni." (not macaroni, but maceeoni!)
At the dinner table Mady says,"I have a boyfriend. His name is Jeremy. He smiled at me, and now I love him. When he grows up to be a Dad, I'm going to marry him." Ben jokingly said, "I already don't like this Jeremy kid." Ben told Mady that she can't get married until she's like 35. She says she will get married when she is 26. She came home from school a couple days later, and let us know that Jeremy is no longer her boyfriend. He didn't smile at her that day, so he is no longer her boyfriend.
Marshall asks Ben, "Does your Mom live in Africa?" Mady follows by asking, "Why does your Mom live in Africa?" We were on our way home from his Mom's house last Sunday night. I had cooked a cheesy buffalo chicken soup for dinner before we went over there, and the kids didn't want it. Surprise surprise! We were on our way home around 7:30, and the kids said they were hungry. Ben and I told them that they need to eat their dinner, and appreciate it. Ben told them that there are kids all over that are hungry. The kids asked where they live, and Ben said a lot of them live in Africa.
One time when Mady got mad she said, "I don't want to be anyone's kid. I just want to be with Jesus."
Mady says, "I'm going to have 126 kids." Marshall says, "I will never leave my Mommy. Even when I have kids."
Mady couldn't sleep the other night, so she came and layed with me. She said, "Somebody has my sleep." I reply, "Oh yeah? Who has it?" Mady says, "My friend Dakota." I ask, "And what is Dakota doing with it?" Mady replies, "Sleeping with it."
Mady says to me, "Mommy, you're the prettiest Mommy in the whole round."
I told Marshall that maybe he could grow up to be a fireman. He said in a panic, "NO, I hate fires. I'm allergic to them."
Mady gets out of time out, and in a sweet voice she says, "That makes me sad. My eyes are angry."
Mady is sitting in the doctor's office, and asks the nurse, "I'm afraid that you're gonna do it wrong. What will happen if you do it wrong? My Mom will know!"
Marshall says, "Ben is a good guy, he plays fun!" Mady says, "I love Ben. He throws me in the sky!" Courtney says, "YEAHHHH!!!!!"
In October 2010 Courtney could count to 13, and knows her colors. She has now mixed her counting up, but still knows her colors. Smart girl!
Me, "Mady, wake up for school. Do you want to wear this shirt?" Mady says, "Mom, my eyes are broken." A minute later Mady says, "Okay, my eyes are fixed now. Yes I want to wear it."
I was listening to 'The Diary of Jane' by Breaking Benjamin. Mady says, "Mommy, why is this song talking about Diarrhea? That is bad for you, it stinks!"
After a day at Primary Children's hospital, Marshall got an MRI, and and Echo, Marshall says, "Mom, this is the best day I never had! It is my favorite day! I wish I could do it all over again." Needless to say, he got SPOILED up there!
Mady told me that I have fat hands.
I wouldn't give Marshall some apple juice before he went to bed. He was so upset about this because his baby sister got juice because she was good most of the day. He proceeded to tell me that he should be getting apple juice, and that he was right, and I was wrong because Jesus would agree with him.
Mady and Courtney were in the bath. They are both laying back. Mady looks at her little sister and says, "Courtney, baptize me!"
Marshall, "Mom, can we listen to the tee skirts and high heels song in the car?" The song he is refering to is 'You Belong With Me' By Taylor Swift.
Marshall, "Does Jesus know where my toy is?" Me, "Yes, maybe you should pray to him to ask him for help finding your toy." Marshall, "Will Jesus come here and help me find it?" Me, "No, he will just help you find it through thoughts and feelings." Marshall, "OH, will he give me his powers?" Me, "Yes Honey, he will give you his powers."
According to Marshall, macaroni and cheese, and McDonald's are kind of the same. The reason being is because they are both yellow, and they both start with an M.
Mady called me a mobby head because I wouldn't give her gum. Not quite sure what that means!
Part of Marshall's prayer while at Grandma's, "And please help me to have a good Christmas, and not be on the naughty list!"

LOL, for like ever!! Kids are the sweetest things ever!!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Oh happy day!

Today started off really good, and ended just as good. I woke up to my dishes being done! There were quite a few dishes, so this was not an easy task. I just want to say that Ben is one amazing man, and I am so lucky to be his Wife! We don't have a dishwasher anymore, so dishes are done by hand. We should still have a dishwasher, but that's a whole different story. All I can say is we have some awesome landlords! And I mean that with as much sarcasm as possible! So, not only did Ben wake up early Monday morning to take the kids to school, but he worked graveyards Monday night. So, he was going off of no sleep in aproximately a 24 hour period. Instead of him coming home and crashing, he is still thinking of what will help me out, and does the dishes. He got to bed around 6:30.  Not even an hour after he got to bed the alarm went off. It was time for me to start the day, and get the kids ready and off to school! He could tell I was so exhausted. I went to bed way too late the night before. He offered to take the kids to school for me while I stay in bed and catch up on some sleep. No way was I going to go for that. I convinced him to go back to sleep while I took the kids to school. This was not an easy task! I had to tell him that if he got up then I would just get up, too. Therefore leaving us both exhausted, and that it would be totally pointless. LOL! I can be stubborn, too. I just can't believe all that he does for me, and our family. He is so thoughtful! I just love him to pieces! I am truly blessed!
Today I signed my son up for basketball! He made me aware at last minute that he doesn't want to play basketball. He wants to play soccer. I told him that they don't play soccer during the winter because of all the snow on the ground. I told him that he could play when the weather warms up. We'll see how this basketball experience goes! I think it will be great for him!
Ben and I are currently involved in a biggest loser competition that his family put together. Ben and I are on a team. It started Jan 1st. However, we didn't start until yesterday. I am starting to go to a zumba class 2 nights a week. I bought a 10 class pass back in November, so I suppose I better make use of it. We also have a yearly pass to the provo rec center, so we need to put those to use as well before they expire in a few months. Also, I finally got an elliptical a few months ago, YAY!! I bought it from my sister for $200. It has been rarely used since she uses her treadmill the majority of the time. So, I was happy with the $200 price. Also, we are following the weight watchers program! Should be a lot of fun! The competition ends in 4 months, so we'll see how many pounds we can shred by then. It will be a journey to get to my goal wieght of 135, but I know I have an amazing support system, and I can and will get there eventually!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Cheeseburger Soup

Last nights dinner menu: Cheeseburger Soup. I had no idea there was such thing as Cheeseburger Soup. It actually sounds quite disgusting to me. I don't exactly think of cheeseburgers when I'm craving some nice, warm, tasty soup. I bought a magazine from the grocery store the other day that is filled with soup recipes. When I got home I noticed the price for the magazine was  $9.99. That's just a little steep for me to pay for a magazine. Had I known it was that much, I probably wouldn't have bought it. However, now that I have it, I'm enjoying trying out the new recipes. While flipping through the magazine, the cheeseburger soup looked so scrumptious..... and it was! Had it not had a picture with the recipe, I probably wouldn't have ever made it. We ate it up! But, we couldn't have hot soup without some french bread and butter for dipping. It was Yum-O!
Thanks to Ben the dishes were done, and he helped cook the soup! :) 
Tonight's menu: Southwestern Steak and Potato Soup! My little family will be eating different types of soup for the next couple of days. Lucky for me I don't have a picky Husband (but I hear he once was picky with his food), and my kids are picky about pretty much everything they eat. So, it works out great for me!

Cheeseburger Soup
Prep: 25 minutes Cook: 10 to 11 hours (low) or 5 5 1/2 hours (high) Makes 6 servings

(I didn't have time to put mine in the crock pot, so I just made mine on the stove top. I let it simmer until potatoes and carrots were tender. Also, I left out a couple ingredients due to not having them on hand: serrano chile pepper, and mustard.)

1 pound ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion (1 medium)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup sliced carrots (1 medium)
1/4 ketchup
2 tablespoons yellow mustard
1 fresh serrano chile pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 ground black pepper
2 14-ounce cans beef broth
1 10.75-ounce can condensed cheddar cheese soup
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese (2 ounces)
Dill pickle spears (optional)

1 In a large skillet, cook meat, onion, and garlic over medium heat until meat is brown and onion is tender, stirring to break up meat as it cooks. Drain off fat.
2 In a 4- to 5-quart slow cooker, combine meat mixture, potatoes, carrot, ketchup, mustard, chile pepper, salt, and black pepper. Stir in broth and soup.
3 Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 10 to 11 hours or on high-heat setting for 5 to51/2 house. Top each serving with cheese. If desired, serve with pickles.

Nutrition facts per serving: 417 cal., 31 g fat (13 g sat. fat), 81 mg chol., 1,311 mg sodium, 17 g carbo., 2 g fiber, 18g pro.\
11 POINTSPLUS VALUES per serving

Enjoy the bubbly goodness! We sure did!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Merry Christmas!

2010 was an amazing Christmas! I loved spending time with my boys Christmas Day! We had fun! The girls had a fun filled Christmas day with their Dad! They were able to come home the night after Christmas, and open the rest of their gifts. It is my tradition to stay home on Christmas rather than drag the kids away from their toys! We welcome visitors though! We play games, play with toys, watch movies, have an elegant Christmas dinner, and just enjoy each other's company! Christmas Eve, and the day after Christmas are available for us to go out, and visit family. However, this was the most bittersweet Christmas I have ever experienced. The reason it was bitter is because it was the first Christmas that I have ever had to spend without my girls. I missed them immensely. It was actually pretty depressing looking over at their unopened gifts under the Christmas tree. I'm glad my girls had a fun Christmas with their Dad though! I just missed them more than words can express! It was such a sweet Christmas because I got to spend it with my 2 favorite boys in the whole wide world: Ben and Marshall! We did have a wonderful, relaxing, and fun Christmas! We had the pleasure of having some visitors on Christmas day: My Mom, Dad, and little twin sisters: Sherrie, and Terrie. Also, Ben's Dad, Step Mom, and little sister! I just love having family over to visit! On Christmas Eve it is a tradition for us to watch "The King is Born". We discuss our Saviour, and his plan for us! I'm thankful for the knowledge I have of the gospel! I wouldn't be nearly what I am today without it! It is also a tradition on Christmas Eve to bake, and decorate cookies for Santa! We hope you all had a joyous Christmas season! Until next year........

Santa came to our house! :) He filled our stockings.......

And he left presents under our tree!

Marshall hanging with buzz lightyear! I was too busy recording Marshall opening his gifts that I totally spaced taking pictures of him opening them. I feel bad!

Poor Marshall got so sick from spinning his buzz lightyear around in circles!

Marshall sleeping with his new spiderman blanket, pillow pet, and Woody!


Opening presents! Marshall was just as excited for the girls to open their gifts as he was when he open his gifts on Christmas Day!

Mommy and me aprons!

Thanks Santa for bringing us girls these cute aprons! :) Don't you just love our ghetto TV, and stand, with the good ol' rabbit ears? It does it's job (for the most part) for the little amount of TV we watch! 

The after math of opening presents! Thankfully, I have a huge living room!

The kids playing with some of their toys!

The kids showing off their blankets I made them for Christmas!

The kids wanted to hide under their blankets and pretend they were presents, LOL!

Bed time! Courtney with her new pillow pet, and blanket!

Bed time! Mady with her new pillow pet, and blanket!
Bed time! Marshall with his new pillow pet, and blanket!

Courtney playing with Benny before bed time! (I think it's so cute how my kids call Ben, Benny!)

And this is how the night ended for the kids! My girls sleep in the oddest positions, LOL!

Ben and I relaxing after a fun night! Yes, I am still wearing my apron!

This is the book Ben gave me for Christmas! I absolutely love it! I will be making a different post specifically addressing this book! It is amazing!

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