My crazy cooking day Tuesday, Sep 30 2008 

I spent most of Sunday cooking so we would have food for the week.  I make salads on Sunday’s for my lunch during the week.  But Ben needs food in the fridge to keep him from eating out.  It is also nice to have food on hand in the evenings if I don’t feel like cooking out planned meal.  Sometimes after dealing with my babies and trying to work out there does not seem to be enough time!

So I made lasagna rolls  (stolen from a fellow mm nesties’s blog), chicken enchiladas in the crock pot, spaghetti squash, and pumpkin cheesecake brownies (from a fellow rb nestie’s blog).

The tomato sauce I made from scratch for the lasagna.

My lasagna rolls

The finished product.  I am hoping this will feed Ben for most of the week.

Ben scraping the squash

My garlic-tomato-basil concoction that I put on the squash. 


I thought it was really good.  Very light.  I put feta on it, which gave it a really good taste.

The stuffing for the chicken enchildas.  i got the recipe from an old school crock pot cookbook of my moms.

The enchilda sauce.  I used the flatout flatbread for this recipe.  With it being cooking in the crock pot and smothered in this sauce you could not tell the difference!  I put each enchilada in foil before putting the the crock.  It made it east to take them and stick in a tupperware container for Ben to eat.  I think that was his favorite of the things I made.

The finished product.

Here is the pumpkin cheesecake brownie.  Ben is in love with this.  It has already been devoured!!!  I think I did not add enough cream cheese as it was extremely light.  Next time I may add more to see if I prefer it.  It was a great fall treat. 

After that I used my egg cooker, pulled out baby spinach and three types of lettuce, added some blue cheese and feta.  I cut roma tomatoes and make blue cheese dressing from scratch.  We had some left over chicken in the fridge that I three into the mix.  There you go: five salads in five small containers so I can grab each day.  The eggs also serve as breakfast with some cottage cheese.

I am much too lazy after a very long day at work.  I have skipped the recipes.  If anyone wants them I will be glad to give them out.

I will leave you with a taste of the beautiful Sunday-


Corbin and my cousin’s daughter-Abby.  Enjoying apples and a nice Sunday afternoon.



Lasagna Rolls with Meat Sauce

Meat Sauce:
1 lb lean ground beef
1 onion chopped
26 oz of your favorite tomato sauce, store bought or homemade

Lasagna Rolls:
10 lasagna noodles
15 oz. ricotta cheese
1/4 package of frozen chopped spinach, squeezed dry (they come in 10 oz packages)
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 large egg, beaten
3/4 t salt
1/2 ground black pepper
1 cup shredded mozzarella & provolone cheese (or just mozzarella)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Cook ground beef and chopped onion over medium heat, drain fat. Add tomato sauce, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes.

Cook lasagna noodles in a pot of boiling water, drain and set aside.

Mix ricotta, spinach, parmesan cheese, egg, salt, and pepper in a bowl until blended.

Spread 1/2 c tomato sauce on the bottom of 13×9 glass pan to prevent lasagna rolls from sticking to the bottom.

Spread 3-4 tablespoons of cheese mixture on each lasagna noodle, roll and place seam side down in 13×9 glass pan. Cover with meat sauce, sprinkle with cheese.

Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes, then remove foil and bake an additional 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes before eating.



One of the two most exciting days of my life. Sunday, Sep 28 2008 

I have been having a lot of conversationswith friends lately about babies and giving birth to them.  Obviously I have a 12 1/2 week old baby…the conversation comes up.  It has lead me to think of the differences in my two birth stories…and the similarities.  So here is part one of the story of how I became a mother.

Corbin Dalton’s Birth Story

Corbin was born on March 2, 2005.  I was 22.  It’s funny how much of that time is fuzzy and how much is so clear.  I am hoping that I can remember enough details to get it all down.  It would be nice if I could show it to Corbin someday.

I was due on February 25.  My womb is apparently much too cozy and I was sitting on a bar stool at Tanner’s celebrating a close friends 30th birthday that night instead of delivering a baby.  That next Wednesday I went to see Dr Batty.  He was not going to induce until 42 weeks.  He is not a fan of early inductions…after doing my research I am not either.  On this visit I had a sono just to be certain everything was okay.  It wasn’t.  I apparently had completely run out of fluid.  I was scheduled to come in to Shawnee Mission that night. 

I got there at 6pm as Dr. Batty had scheduled.  He had left orders for them to start the cervidil.  Apparently they were unable to locate the orders so they paged the Dr on call in the practice.  This Dr was not alright with giving the orders and was trying to locate Batty.  I think he was at a KU game or something equally silly that night.  They finally got a hold of him around midnight and were able to start the cervidil.  Fun night of hanging out in a hospital gown.

The plan was to use the cervidil until 6 am and then they would start the pitocin.  It never came to that.  Within an hour of the cervidil I began having horrible contractions.  I could not move.  I would try to walk, try to shower, try to roll over and nothing helped.  I had about three seconds between each contraction.  I was only dilated to a 2, but was in considerable pain.  I started having panic attacks.  My L&D nurse (who was awesome) decided to go ahead with the epidural in an effort to ease my pain and help me and the baby.  He wasn’t getting enough oxygen due to the intensity of the contractions. 

I wish I could remember that hour more clearly.  I think that even if I wrote this in the days after he was born I would not be able to.  It was such a fuzzy, painful moment in time. 

The anesthesiologist came in and I remember them having a hard time.  They want to give you the epi when you are not contracting, but that was not possible.  I remember my mom holding me and the epi hurting sooo bad.  Then the pain began to subside.  As I laid down I realized there was a part of my right lower abdomen that I could still feel everything.  So I got another dose from the anesthesiologist

.  At that point I could feel nothing…and I do mean nothing.  I was very giddy and happy. 

At this point time flew and I really don’t have any memories.  Next thing I know it is after 5 am.  The nurse is telling me I am dilated to a 10.  They are waiting for Dr Batty to come in and we will start to push.  This is the point where I got nauseous and the chicken soup they let me eat after midnight come ups…..violently.  Dr Batty walks in….pissed that the nurses were too incompetent to follow directions and lost his order.  He was then pissed that they fed me that late

Now as we get to the point where I need to push I tell my nurse that I never took a L&D class.  She tells me that they are mainly as waste of time and walks me through how I need to push.  I can’t feel my legs, or anything else below the epidural.   The nurse and Corbin’s dad have to hold my legs up for me.  I cannot feel any of my pushes.  Dr. Batty tells me I need to push down.  I laugh at him, I have noooo way to control how a I push.  This is probably why he opts to give me an episiotomy.  He also has to use forceps to get Corbin out.  At 6:02 am I finally give birth to my firstborn child.

I cannot describe what it felt like when the Dr put my baby on my stomach.  All that waiting and wondering what he would look like and there he was.

Looking back I was so young.  But Corbin was a good baby.  I had a couple weeks of colic, but that was the worst of it.  He slept through the night by three weeks.  He was usually very content.  He didn’t get sick a lot.  He was (and still is) my beautiful baby boy.

I have a sickness… Thursday, Sep 25 2008 

I have been planning the kid’s Halloween costumes since early August.  Both happened to come in the mail today!!

I got Eleanor’s on Etsy.






I have no idea why I can’t get the images to show upright.






My SIL decided I was traumatizing my daughter after seeing this picture.






“Howdy Howdy Howdy”

I gave Corbin three options for Halloween.  Woody, Buzz, or a fireman.  His response?  “Woody, Buzz, AND a fireman”  So I picked one for him.  He is very excited!!

Mexican Soup Thursday, Sep 25 2008 

I stole this of the blog of a fellow MM nestie.  It is a Weight Watcher’s Recipe that is apparently 0 points (whatever that means).  I thought it looked yummy!  I took it as a good way to clean out the fridge of some veggies that were close to going bad.

6 cups vegetable broth (I only had 4 1/2)
14 ounces canned diced tomato, Mexican-style preferred (I chopped fresh ones that we on their last leg)
2 cups fresh green beans, trimmed into bite-sized pieces (I used fresh for the same reason as the tomatoes)
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 small zucchini
1 cup tomatillo, cubed (I love you pampered chef chopper)
1/2 medium poblano chili pepper, chopped
1 medium jalapeño, membranes and seeds removed, minced (I kept the seeds, I like to walk on the wild side)
1 medium Spanish onion, chopped (we had pearl onions that we about to go bad, so I threw them in instead)
1 green pepper, chopped
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon fresh oregano (I used 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano)
2 roasted red peppers packed in water (mine were dry)
1 tablespoon chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (again, fresh)
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons lime juice
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped


Heat a large pot or Dutch oven on MEDIUM HIGH. This was the first time I ever used mine!!
Add the vegetables and spices (canned tomatoes through oregano) as they’re prepped. This took forever!
 (See the cute C&B dutch oven :-))
Add the broth.
Whiz the red peppers and chipotle pepper in a mini food processor and stir in. (I used the hand chopper) 
Cover and bring to a boil.
 (here is my messy kitchen and my trusty laptop “pinkie”)
Once at a boil, partly uncover the soup, reduce the heat to maintain a slow simmer and simmer for about 10 minutes. Stir in salt, lime juice and cilantro. Serve immediately.
I added about 1/4 lb of ground round.  I had it left over in the fridge and it needed to be used so I browned it and tossed it in before boiling.  It added another texture and gave Ben a reason to eat it!
We served it with cheddar cheese and tortilla chips.  Yum!

Fluffy Butt Friday, Sep 19 2008 

I bought a couple of cloth diapers on Etsy to give them a try.  So I used them both tonight.  I haven’t decided what I think yet, but they do look cute on her rear!!

My little baby in her huge diaper!

The other one has a cute Halloween pattern.  It did not come with the soaker in it.  I didn’t realize that as I know nothing about cloth diapers.  She leaked all over herself and her swing!  I will try to get a pic of the halloween one another day.  They are both AIO.  One had velcro and one has snaps.  They were both really easy to put on.  The cleaning part is what remains to be seen.  I think the first “dirty” diaper will be the deciding factor.  That, and these suckers are pricey.  I don’t think you really save *that* much money cloth diapering.  I do think it is much better for the enviroment.

When I think about it.  I stopped using cleaners and only use vinegar and baking soda.  I didn’t want my kids inhaling the chemicals.

I stopped buying processed food (for the most part) and am attempting everything from scratch.  I think this is better for my family.

Wouldn’t this be another choice that is good for my daughter?  We’ll see…

“I under estimated the creepy factor” Friday, Sep 19 2008 

We took Corbin to the circus last weekend.  I have to say I was not overly impressed.  Corbin kept wanting to go home.  On top of that I don’t even want to tell you what we spent while there.  So not worth it.  But I wanted to take him at least once!



The whole Bello theme was a bit dumb, I think Corbin wanted to see more animals.

The highlight of his day was this motorcyle. 

This was the toy *I* wanted!

The tigers.

Stupid Bello

Weight loss woes Friday, Sep 19 2008 

I weigh 190 lbs.  The day I have birth to Corbin I weighed 188.  Just sayin.  Ouch.  For well over a month I have been eating no more than 1300 calories a day.  I have been working out at least five days a week.  What gives?

I am just sooo frustrated and am not sure what to try next.  I cannot be this large forever.  Heck, I can’t afford to replace my wardrobe.  I wore maternity pants to work today.  Ugh.

Who knew I liked meatloaf? Saturday, Sep 13 2008 

Ben loves meatloaf.  I will never understand why.  When I ran across this recipe in my Southern Living cookbook I thought it seemed like a good compromise.  I will eat anything with cheese on it!  I was very excited to try it.

Blue Cheese Meatloaf Roll from The Ultimate Southern Living Cookbook

8 slice white bread, torn into pieces

1/4 c milk

4oz crumbled cheese

1 lg egg, slightly beaten

1 lb ground round

1/2 lb ground pork

2 c soft breadcrumbs (it called for homeade, but we had a can I used)

1/2 c chopped onion

2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1/4c ketchup

3 tbls chopped fresh parsley (I used dried since that was what I had on hand)

1 tbl Worcesterchire sauce

2 lg eggs, lightly beaten

Garnish:fresh parsley…we skipped this

*combine torn bread and milk into a bowl, stir in blue cheese and one egg. 

I tried to get Corbin to tear the bread crumbs for me, he was more interested in eating the bread.  “I just eat this piece and tear the rest”  then he would eat another piece and say the same thing.

*combine groud round and next nine ingredients.  Shape into a 15×12 inch rectangle on heavy duty plastic wrap.

*spoon blue cheese mixture on top, spreading within one inch of edges.  Roll up in a jelly roll fashion.  Press edges and ends to seal.


*Place meat loaf roll, seam side down, on a lightly greased rack, place rack in a foil lined broiler pan.  Bake at 375 for 1 hour or until meat therm reads 160 degrees.  Garnish if desired.

6 servings…434 calories per serving….15.9g fat.

I loved it.  Ben determined that he did not like blue cheese.  I don’t think I crumbled it snall enough.  I really enjoyed that taste of it and the softness of the bread inside.  The meat was very well seasoned.  We are going to to try again with either cheddar or mozarella to see if he likes it better that way.

My favorite baby gift Saturday, Sep 13 2008 

I had a really close friend in college named Stephanie.  We were very close at that time. 

 Us in our apartment in college.

Our friendship came to end about three and half years ago due to my stupidity and bad choices.  It took me about two and half years to call her and tell I was sorry.  I was lucky enough that she came into town for my wedding (and made me cry when I was taking my pre-ceremony pics) even though I was not at hers.  We are both so busy and never have to time talk.  But I love her and miss her very much.   So the day I got home from the hospital after giving birth to Eleanor I had a box at my door.  It was a quilt that Steph had made for the baby.  I got a lot of neat gifts from a lot of generous people.  This wasn’t even her only quilt (my grandma made one as well), but this one was the most special to me. 

 Here is Eleanor at 10 weeks laying on her quilt. 

 So Eleanor says “Thank you Aunt Stephanie!  I can’t wait to meet you!!!”

I do love pink…. Saturday, Sep 13 2008 

It was my turn to make a birthday cake for a co-worker.  As a child her mom would make her cherry chip cake with strawberry icing.  Once or twice the person who has had her cake remembered that and makes it.  It usually comes from the box.  I thought I would give it a shot from scratch.  I had everything I needed except the cherries and strawberries laying around.  So after the mess that was the manicotti I decided to bake a cake!  Here is what my kitchen looked like *after* I had filled the dishwasher for the first time.


Cherry Chip Cake from


3 cups cake flour
1 3/4 cups sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup maraschino cherry juice
2/3 cup milk
16 maraschino cherries, very roughly chopped
5 egg whites (2/3 cup)
1/2 cup chopped pecans


  1. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt.
  2. Blend together sugar and butter. Add cherry juice, and milk. Stir, then add dry ingredients.
  3. Beat 2 minutes and then add egg whites. Beat 2 minutes more. Fold in cherries and nuts.
  4. Pour into prepared 9-inch round cake pans and bake at 350F for 30 to 35 minutes, or until done.
  5. Cool and frost with a fluffy white frosting or your favourite frosting. Decorate with additional cherries.

DS discovered he loved cherries!  This cake turned out really yummy.  It was a dense cake with a lot over flavor.  The cherry taste was not overpowering.


Strawberry Icing from Martha Stewart


Makes enough for 1 dozen cupcakes

  • 1/2 cup whole frozen strawberries, thawed
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, firm and slightly cold
  • Pinch of coarse salt
  • 3 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Place strawberries in the bowl of a small food processor; process until pureed. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter and salt on medium speed until light and fluffy. Reduce mixer speed and slowly add confectioners’ sugar; beat until well combined. Add vanilla and 3 tablespoons strawberry puree (save any remaining strawberry puree for another use); mix until just blended. Do not overmix or frosting will incorporate too much air. Frosting consistency should be dense and creamy, like ice cream.

Off course I had leftover strawberries and Corbin loved that.  He still has no desire to like batter.  He did think he had gone to heaven when I let him eat a spoonful of icing!

The icing was very sweet and very rich.  I found that letting it sit a while before serving kind of set it.  The girls at the office loved it! 

I made a double batch of the icing since I was scared I would not have enough (I work with sugar addicts).  I waaay too much.  So I also made a yellow cake at home to use the rest.  The light and fluffy yellow cake went well with this heavy icing.

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