Chocolate Chip Cookies

There is nothing that takes me back to my childhood quite like a chocolate chip cookie.  It is the cookie that my family is known for.  The first recipe I learned how to make. The cookie that I have been making since I was 7.  It is an undeniable necessity to have a fantastic chocolate chip cookie in your repertoire.  This cookie is wonderfully chewy with crisp edges and keeps beautifully.

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1 cup butter

1 cup sugar

1 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

1 1/2 tsps. vanilla

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking soda

3 cups flour

1 cup chocolate chips (I use extra dark by guittard, but go with your own personal preference)

Cream butter and sugars together.

Add in eggs, one at a time.

Make sure to scrape down the bowl.

Add in the vanilla, salt and baking soda.

Make sure everything is well mixed before adding in the flour.

Mix in the flour.

Once the flour is fully incorporated, add in the chocolate chips.

Portion out the dough and place in the fridge.

Oven to 375*

After oven has preheated, place the cookies on parchment on a cookie sheet.

Bake for 12 minutes, remove once edges are a golden brown.

Pour yourself a big glass of milk (preferably whole, I mean, you’re about to indulge in a pile of cookies, do you really care about calories at this point?) and enjoy!

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Musings on Motherhood

Let’s start this out, by saying that throughout everything I ever write, think, do or say, I will always and forever agree with Amy Poehler and go with “good for you, not for me.”

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Part of why I want a second (third, fourth…) child is to validate my position as a stay at home mom.  To make it “worth it” financially, at least two children need to be involved and to make it so that I feel as though I am busy and fulfilled enough, I need at least two.  Did anybody else feel like that when they just had one?  Did it go away at two?

Eli clogged the toilet for the first time.  With cotton balls and makeup packaging.  And I had cleaned it about 4 hours earlier.  And the plunger didn’t work.  And I have thin hands, long arms and flexible wrists.  I used my hand to unclog a toilet.  My life is as glamorous as it sounds.

It has taken Kenny and I a long time to get back to “normal.” Normal isn’t even the correct word.  There is no back to normal after kids, there is only finding a new normal.  Because those babies grow so fast and change so much, that means that the new normal is also constantly changing.  The big part of the struggle with parenthood and relationships is that those relationships have to find constant new footing.  It’s tiring and trying, but so very worth it.

Not only is it common for me to wear the same clothes two days in a row, but it actually uncommon for me not to.  Before you get too thrown off by my second day attire, I don’t actually get into to real clothes until about 2 in the afternoon, meaning I get about 7 hours of those clothes and if I’m just hanging out home or the park, it hardly justifies a wash.  Honestly, I’m just being environmentally friendly.

Sleep is the most important thing in the world.  Seriously, the most important thing.  I will forever be a sleep nazi.  Push a naptime, push a bedtime and everything is thrown off.  I know I’m the annoying mom that gets stuck in sleep jail, but I’m happier and better with regular sleep habits and so is Eli.

 

 

Day in the Life

I adore knowing what other people do all day because I’m super nosy and have plenty of patience for the minutia of the everyday.  A day in the life post, how fun!  Or so I thought.  I would have loved for this to have been a perfect magical day, but in reality, this is just the everyday; some things fail and some things are great.

2:30am:  Little man wakes up (has not been common lately, thankfully!) Binky back in mouth, boy back to sleep.

7:15am: Eli wakes up for the day and wakes me up by yelling for me.  Grab him and snuggle in bed, watching the Christmas tree.

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7:45am: Diaper change and breakfast, blueberries and cottage cheese.

8:15am:  Couple episodes of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse for the kid; time on my phone and some light napping for mama.  I’ve been trying to be very intentional with my time.  When Eli is watching a show, I need to either rest or do something productive, because when he isn’t, I need to be fully present with him.

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9:15:  Time to make the bed, clean up the house, play with Eli.  Lately its been Mr. Potato Head and animals or things he can destroy.  I read somewhere that in order to maintain some sense of order and calm, you should try to keep one room of your house as a sanctaury, clean and orderly.  That has become our bedroom and it works amazing.  Plus Eli loves “helping” me make the bed by rolling in all the bedding.

 

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Toast and apple snack, he very much prefers them whole.

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Inevitable toddler meltdown pertaining to me saying no to more tv 🙂

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11:45am:  Couple books and down for a nap!

12:00: Yoga, catching up on Friday Night Lights.

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12:45pm: Chore of the day: bathroooms!  And a facemask to make sure I stay on top of the ability to multitasking.

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1:15pm:  Shower- BY MYSELF!!!

1:45pm:  Eli is up from his nap.

A little tv time while I get lunch ready- toast, orange, cheddar cheese, veggie squeeze packet.

Getting ready, running around the house.

3:00pm: Head to the park and the bank.

3:30pm: At the park!  On a gorgeous, sunny 50 degree day.   We have been trying to get out of the house and play outside with Eli everyday, days like today it’s much better than the 30 degree slushy days.

He wanted to run around the tennis courts the whole time.

4:15pm:  Head back home for Daddy time!

5:00pm:  Make frosting for sugar cookie houses.

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5:45pm:  Try to build a sugar cookie house and epically fail at it.  A delicious failure.

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6:00pm:  Bathtime to rinse off all the stickiness.

6:30pm:  Make dinner.

7:15pm:  Realize that dinner is also going to be a failure (new rice recipe, different brand of shrimp- all terrible!) Kenny leaves to grab dinner.  Eli eats cottage cheese, peas, black beans for dinner :).

8:00pm:  Stories and bedtime.

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8:15pm:  Margarita and The Voice…. Followed by The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show.

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11:00pm:  Bedtime.

 

December Goals

Chugging right along on our goals this month, woot woot!!

November Goals Review:

Master bedroom:  We are so so so close, as in I’m hoping to do a bedroom reveal next week.  I found a desk, sanded and painted it, made shelves, hung them, repainted the dresser, purchased bench supplies, etc. etc.  I can’t wait to show it off.  This room is very quickly becoming my favorite spot in the house.

Church:  One time this month- I’ll take it!  Eli ran off into his little toddler room and when I went to pick him up he was busy stuffing his face with animal crackers and playing wth trucks.  My heart melted into a giant puddle to see that this girl who I had never met before, watched my son and seemed to delight in him.  I am so grateful to people that love on my boy.

Daily Routine:  It’s a bit of a work in progress, but things are at least getting accomplished each day.  Mainly I’ve been trying to get any chores and excercise done in the morning so that naptime I can get ready and the afternoons can be devoted to playtime and evenings family relaxing time.

Christmas Shopping: !!!!!!!!!!!! Almost completely done!! This has never happened to me before, I have never been this ahead of the game! I have four more people to shop for, plus I did all of this from my bed.  All hail shopping online.

Orphan Thanksgiving:  We kept putting off planning a big Thanksgiving because there was a chance that we would need to head to Redding for a quick family visit, so Thanksgiving ended up small, but so fun and relaxing.

Date Night:  whomp whomp.  Fortunately, I have a couple dates planned for when we are in Redding for Christmas.

Family Dates:  We did it!  Zoo and hot springs!

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Book Club:  nope

Noonday Ambassador:  It’s happening, but not until after the holidays.

New Dish:  I only got to do one new dish, but it was AMAZING!!  This delicious roasted chicken taht has totally lit up my world and forever changed my opinion on brussel sprouts.

December Goals: 

Volunteer:  As a stay at home mom, I have so many hours to fill in a day and so many lessons that are necessary to teach Eli.  One of the great blessings of having so much time is that there is now plenty of time to volunteer. After finding a listing ofways to volunteer with kids, I’m so excited to sart incorporating it into our weeks.

Finish Master Bedroom:  🙂

Living Room:  There aren’t a ton of things to do in our living room, but the most important thing in there is getting a big floating shelf/mantle over our tv, really important because I want a place to hang stockings!

New dish:  still wanting to challenge myself in the kitchen.

Christmas Activities!:  Trying to work out our schedule so that we can get to all the Christmas activities in the valley.  Christmas Parade, Gingerbread house, visit Santa, Idaho Botanical Garden, deliver cookies, live Nativity, Christmas Eve sushi-  this month is going to be one long family date and I can’t wait.

Excercise:  At the beginning of the year, getting good at yoga was a big goal of mine, however I haven’t done anything about it yet, so I need to get on it!

Get published:  There are a couple mom blogs out there that I’m going to start submitting work to, it is both a terrifying and a necessary next step.  Wish me luck!

Feel free to join me in setting some Decemeber goals and share them below or link to your own blog!

 

 

Toddler Gifts

Being a big believer in not wanting to waste money, unnecesarily fill up a landfill and hating clutter has turned me into a bit of a minimalist.  This is especially apparent when it comes to things for Eli.  Being the only child, the only grandchild and just so dang adorable, has obviously made sure that he would want for nothing, but I try not to let him have everything.

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Clearly, he has plenty to play with.

Knowing that each phase and size Eli is in is quite fleeting, combined with the knowledge that he will surely be gifted plenty anytime he is around his enormous family, has made sure that I limit the things he has.  BUT!  It is so much harder than I thought it would be!  Especially because this is the first year that Eli will actually get into Christmas.  I’m looking at all of these amazing toys that I know he would LOVE and I just need to remind myself that he doesn’t need them ALL.  He will not stay interested in them ALL, we do not have room for them ALL.  I also like to remind myself that Eli is not going to be our only child, and that maybe number 2, number 3, number 4? would like toys that aren’t only hand me downs.

So, here we are at Christmas time and Eli is getting snowpants, Mr. Potato Head accesory set, a couple books and stocking stuffers (alphabet magnets, bathtub crayons, hat, toothbrush, movie).  I’m eyeballing a ball pit, racetrack, realistic looking toy animals, basketball hoop, tricycle, ukelale, cars, sled, cozy coupe, zoo membership, soccer tots lessons.  We may end up purchasing one more toy for Eli, but probably won’t.  His birthday is two months after Christmas, therefore if there are any things that he still “needs” after the holiday season, he can get them then, or really anytime; there has never been a rule that I need to wait for an occasion to buy my son a present.

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A little glimpse from last year, look at that sweet boy!!

As we enter this holiday season, and shower our children with gifts, I hope to keep in mind that stuff is just stuff and that the traditions we start to put in place our what those little ones are going to remember and cling to.  It’s good to buy the presentrs it’s good to give the gifts, but there is no reason or need to go overboard and buy ALL the things.  It’s why we will go to the Christmas parade, the botanical gardens all lit up, church as a family, decorate all together, visit Santa, Christmas eve sushi, gingerbread houses, drive around looking at Christmas lights.  Our family isn’t going to ever be the ones that are great the strict daily countdown of advent, commemorating each day with a trinket or outing, but we have quite a few things on the books and I can’t wait to grow our collection of ways to celebrate that bring us all together,