Day 106- *Sigh*

First off, let me just say that I'm incredibly grateful that Asher slept from 10-6 last night. It was amazing. I awoke with a start at 5:15 when my husband's alarm went off and was confused because I hadn't been up with Asher before that. I fed Asher at 6, then we kind of slept until 8, when Caleb woke up.
The *sigh* part of my day comes a little later. Our church has a mom's group that meets every other Tuesday and I really enjoy going. But... for some reason I am completely out of the loop on which Tuesdays it meets on and where it will be on a given Tuesday. This morning I got ready and rushed my kiddos out the door, only to find NO ONE at the house that I thought it would be located at. I texted my friends, but they didn't have their phones out (because they were at the mom's group). So, I sadly ran a few errands and just went home. Finally, at 11:00 (the group is from 9:30-11:30), a church email comes through with the address of where the group was supposed to meet. Too little, too late!!! *sigh* Some things are just not meant to be. Better luck next time!


Day 105- (Healthy) Make ahead breakfasts

I've been trying to create some healthy options for quick breakfasts in the Hunt house. Two options I've recently tried are: Baked Oatmeal muffins and Omlet muffins. Neither are really muffins, but they are made in muffin tins, so it's a good way to describe them.
The first is Baked Oatmeal. I baked them in Cars cupcake liners to make them more appealing to my 2 year old son. The recipe is adapted from Sugar Free Mom at http://www.sugarfreemom.com/recipes/personal-sized-baked-oatmeal-with-individual-toppings-gluten-free-diabetic-friendly/

2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups applesauce, unsweetened
1 banana, mashed
1/2 cup honey
5 cups, Oats
1/4 cup flaxseed meal
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
3 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 3/4 cups milk
Optional: 1/2 cup chocolate chips and 1/2 cup craisins (you could use nuts, raisins, apple, etc)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix eggs, vanilla, applesauce, banana and Stevia together in a bowl. Add in oats, flax, cinnamon, baking powder, salt and mix well with wet ingredients. Pour in milk and combine. Finally add optional fillers and stir (or add them on top after putting them in the muffin tins). Spray muffin tins with cooking spray or use cupcake liners (makes 18 regular-sized muffins). Pour mixture evenly into muffin tin cups. If using toppings add them onto the tops of muffins now. Bake 30 minutes until a toothpick in center comes out clean. Cool and enjoy or freeze them in gallon freezer bags.
The second muffin recipe is for muffin omelets. This is a great recipe because I always have good intentions to make myself egg in the morning, since it's such a good protein, but I never seem to have time... I like to thaw these and then put them on a whole wheat English muffin or mini-bagel for breakfast. I would recommend cooking them in cupcake liners or greasing your tin really well, because even though I sprayed my non-stick muffin tin well, it took 4 rounds of scrubbing and soaking to clean my muffin tin out!
The original recipe also calls for lining the tin with prosciutto, which would be yummy and decrease the sticking!
This recipe is adapted from Nomnompaleo at http://nomnompaleo.com/post/7486819479/prosciutto-wrapped-mini-frittata-muffins

4 tablespoons oil (I used EVOO)
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 cup frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 red pepper diced (you could use any veggies you have available- broccoli, tomatoes, mushrooms, etc)
1 cup diced ham
8 large eggs
¼ cup coconut milk (the fatty stuff at the top of the can works best)
2 tablespoons of flour
Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper
I preheated the oven to 375°F and prepped my veggies. For the batter, I beat the eggs in a large bowl with coconut milk, flour, salt, and pepper until well-mixed. Then, I added the sautéed the veggies and ham and stirred to combine. I poured the batter in the muffin tin (makes 12 muffins). Then, I popped the muffins in the oven for about 20 minutes until well-set. I pulled them out and let them cool for a few minutes before removing.


Day 104- I heart garage sale season

We're just gearing up, folks!
Garage sale season is upon us. I plan to purchase most of the boys' clothes for the next year and toys, as needed, during the next few months at garage sales. This morning I went out with a friend for a few minutes and picked up an Imaginarium marble maze for $3 and a double jogging stroller for $25! I love good deals. I try to be very careful about what I purchase at sales because it is easy to end up with lots of junk. I generally make a mental list of what I need and don't stray from it unless there is just something too good ;). Happy spring, everyone!


Day 102- Drum roll please....

... I've decided to return to work, but on a very part time basis.
I will be working about 8 hours (plus 1-2 hours paperwork) each week. I struggled and struggled with whether to work part time or stay home. I finally felt like I was supposed to stay home for the most part, but wanted to keep working a little for several reasons 1) to keep my skills current, 2) to complete 5 years of pediatric PT practice, 3) to maintain a good relationship with my boss and co-workers, 4) to give myself a "kid break" each week, 5) to give myself a chance to try out staying home without fully committing, 6) to continue to serve people with disabilities with my education and time. I wasn't sure what my boss would say, but when I met with her, she was incredibly flexible! An answer to prayer!
I'm still trying to figure out the final details... Which day/days to work, whether to do 1 full day or 2 half days, who will do childcare, etc. But I think the details will come together soon. I'm thankful for the opportunity to continue working on such a part time basis, so that I can really invest more time into my family and gospel intentionality.
I'm sure there will be challenges with this new schedule, but I think it will be a good balance for this time in life.
Pics of my two "jobs:


Day 101- Tragedy or comedy?!

Tragedy or comedy (depends on state of delirium):

9:30 pm- feed Asher
10:00 pm- put Asher down
10:30 pm- get in bed
12:45 am- feed Asher, put him down
1:30 am- get back in bed and fall asleep
4:30 am- Asher wakes up, feed Asher
5:00 am- rock Asher to sleep for ridiculously long time
5:45 am- get in bed, Alan leaves for work
6:15 am- finally fall back asleep
6:30 am- Caleb wakes up wailing (very unusual, but he's cold)
6:45 am- get back in bed
7:00 am- finally fall back asleep
7:15 am- Asher wakes up
7:30 am- feed Asher, who is up for the day
8:00 am- Caleb wakes up

I'm a bit tired. When does that sleeping through the night thing start?

Good thing they're cute...


Day 100- 30 by 30

My friend, Julia (see sidebar), posted a 30 by 30 on her blog a few days ago. I thought it was a great idea and wanted to make my own list. I hope to update it several times throughout the year. Let's see if I can accomplish these before I turn the BIG 3-0!

30 by 30

1. read entire bible
2. run half marathon
3. month of clean eating
4. fully potty train Caleb
5. breast feed for 1 year
6. complete continuing ed hours
7. visit Verser relatives
8. create new advent tradition
9. complete 1000 things to be thankful for
10. weekend away with Alan
11. learn how to use my sowing machine
12. learn how to knit or crochet
13. complete family photo albums and Caleb 2 yr/Asher 1 yr albums
14. fit into my old jeans
15. berry picking
16. shop at farmers market
17. spend at least 1 day/month volunteering
18. get a massage
19. set boundaries for phone usage
20. switch over to glass food storage
21. reread Missional Moms
22. write 5 letters and mail them to others
23. plan for and celebrate family birthdays
24. go on a date with Alan at least once a month
25. plan adult vacation for after Alan graduates
26. meet 5 new neighbors
27. learn a yummy whole wheat bread recipe
28. make my own laundry detergent
29. have a personal retreat (at least 24 hours)
30. commit to a flexible daily routine


Day 99- Making Yogurt!

I have been making my own yogurt for several months now and I thought I would post about how it is done and the benefits!
Several months ago, I bought a Dash Yogurt Maker (though I've seen recipes for simply doing it in the crock pot).

Making plain, yummy yogurt is fairly simple with the yogurt maker. You simply bring 5 cups of milk up to 180 degrees on the stove and let it cool to 100ish degrees. (if you don't want to heat it, the yogurt just comes out runnier). Then you stir in 3 T of yogurt (preferably plain, but I have even used gogurt). You pour the mixture into the 7 jars and let it go for 8-12 hours (depending on the fat percentage in your milk). I usually have 2%, which is 10 hours. After that, I pour off a tiny bit of whey that separates from the yogurt, then stir up the jars and put them in the fridge. Voila! Fresh, plain yogurt!
Alan and I both enjoy eating yogurt with granola or other cereal. I've also recently been experimenting with just walnuts, a bit of honey, and fresh fruit.

The yogurt tastes great, though has a slightly grainier texture than store bought yogurt. You can make your own Greek yogurt by straining the yogurt once it is prepared. I like the Dash system because it gives you individual cups, which makes it easier to portion and take with you to lunch at work. I do wish I had another set of jars so that I could make another batch of yogurt before the previous batch is all gone. Eating plain yogurt took me a little getting used to, since I had been eating sugary, flavored yogurt for so long. I am really enjoying it now and think that the other stuff is too sweet. I like that the yogurt has no added preservatives, thickeners, or sugar. And, it's definitely cheaper than buying all the individual Greek yogurts we were purchasing at $1 each. My estimate is that each batch of 7 costs about $1! It just depends on the price of milk and whether you have to buy a starter or if you already have some yogurt to use. And that's the scoop on yogurt making!


Day 96- Studs

Yes, Alan and I are, in fact, studs. We watched 4 children (ages 2.5, 1.5, 4 months, and 1 month) this evening for about 3 hours. This included lots of screaming from the 4 month old, the 2.5 year old getting put of bed 4 times, 1 breast feeding session, and a perfect 1.5 year old. But, now they are all asleep. We can do anything!!!!

Gotta love date night trade offs. Good luck in a couple of weeks, Menards :).


Day 95- 2.5 Years!!!!!

Well, this post is pretty late, but Happy 2.5 Years, Caleb!!! I can't believe how much you have grown and changed in the last 6 months! I included pictures over the past 6 months!

Age/Size: 2.5 years. You wear 2T in pretty much all your clothes and have been in a size 4 diaper until we switched you over to big boy underwear! You are about 3 feet tall and weigh about 28 lbs.

Sleep habits: Your sleep habits have changed in the past few months and we are trying to figure out your sleep needs. We put you to bed around 8:30 at night, but often you don't fall asleep until 9:30 or 10. You often get up multiple times to request things or just because you are bored. You normally sleep in until 8ish and take a 2 hour nap during the day from around 12:30-2:30. You didn't take a nap a few days ago and fell straight to sleep at 8:30, so we are wondering if we should get rid of the nap? Mom isn't quite ready for that though :).

Eating habits: You are eating fairly well most of the time, but often need lots of prompting to eat your food. You are fairly structured in your food requests. You like to eat either a multigrain waffle, "daddy cereal" (yogurt and cheerios), or a bagel with peanut butter or cream cheese for breakfast. You always want a peanut butter and honey sandwich for lunch. Dinner varies, but you will eat ravioli, quesadillas, spaghetti, pizza, shredded chicken with dip, and grilled cheese fairly consistently. Other favorites include: red pepper or carrots dipped in hummus, apples dipped in peanut butter, cuties, bananas, wheat thins, craisins or raisins, applesauce, yogurt, deli meat, Chick-fil-a kids meals, and pretty much anything sweet (ice cream, chocolate, suckers- but we try not to eat these very often).

Milestones: You are talking in complete sentences and have fairly good grammar. You like to sing and have started singing to yourself. You are asking lots of "what" and "where" questions. You have started noticing letters and can now identify C, A, M, D, R, S, O, and X (maybe others too). You know that Caleb starts with C, Asher A, Mama M, Daddy D, and Raccoon R. You point out letters on signs when we are driving. You are getting pretty good at using utensils when you eat, as well as undressing yourself. You are getting into motor play a lot and enjoy running, jumping down, somersaults, alternating your feet on the stairs, jumping up the stairs, falling down (on purpose), and climbing. At the park, you can climb most open ladders and slide independently. You still like the "baby" swing best. You started potty training right around your 2.5 year birthday. You have picked up the pee-pee part well, but are still struggling with going poop in the potty. From what I hear, that is pretty typical. You'll catch on soon.

Likes/Dislikes: You LOVE anything transportation, especially things associated with the Cars movies or construction. You like Lightning McQueen, Mater, Thomas the Train, and Nemo. Your favorite things to watch are Dinosaur Train, Super Why, Mater Tall Tales, and Monster Trucks. You enjoy balls of any kind- especially basketballs and footballs. You point out cars when we are driving that you think are race cars. You dislike trying new foods, getting your hair cut, and having a time out. Really- you are a pretty easy kiddo :).

Special Moments: You finished up day care at the center you had been at for the past 1.5 years. Your teachers cried on your last day because they loved you so much. You started a parent's day out program at a church up the street 1 day/week and you had a great time. They said that you fit right in. You love your grandparents, aunts, and uncles. You talk about them a lot and have enjoyed spending time with them over the past few months. You travelled to Hawaii with your Grandma Hunt, Uncle Matt, Aunt Jamie, and parents in December. The airplanes and ocean were the most exciting parts for you. You spent Christmas with your Galbo family and had a great time. Baby Asher was born in March and you adjusted well to being a big brother. You are very helpful without being too overbearing. You are so patient and really easygoing about sharing mom. You are a great big brother!


Day 94- 1 Month Old!

Happy 1 month old birthday, Asher!! We are so glad you joined our family! We are still getting to know your unique personality, but so far you are fairly easy-going most of the time, but you let us know your needs when they arise :). You are happiest when held and you don't tolerate many positions for very long if you are awake (unless in my arms). You like to grunt and coo and squeak, maybe you'll be our little extrovert. We love you and can't wait to get to know you more!

Age/Size: 1 month, around 8-9lbs and 22-23 inches long. You are still solidly in newborn clothes, but are now fitting into a few 0-3 month outfits. You wear newborn diapers as well.

Sleep habits: You sleep for 1-3 hour stretches during the day depending on how tired you are and how much focus I can put on relaxing you to sleep. You have been sleeping fairly well in your car seat or crib lately (and in my arms when I give myself the pleasure). At night, you sleep from 3-5 hours most of the time with a few 2 hour and one 5.5 hour stretch thrown in there. You are consistently stretching your first nighttime sleep, so I'm hopeful that soon we'll be getting 6-7 hour stretches. You sleep on your stomach in the crib, since we have a movement monitor and you are more comfortable that way.

Eating habits: You eat every 2-3 hours during the day and every 3-5 hours at night with a little variation both ways. I'm not sure how much you eat, since I have yet to pull out the pump and give you a bottle- need to do that soon! You have a ton of gas and I have to burp you a lot. You get very uncomfortable if it builds up too much.

Milestones: You use your full arm or leg to swat at hanging toys. You can track a brightly colored object if moved slowly in front of you. You've given me a little eye gaze, but not much yet. I also think you may have smiled at me, but it's hard to tell because you are so gassy :). You are also starting to cop and squeak a little. You are very strong and can lift up your head for several seconds on your tummy, as well as turn your head from side to side. I've found you scooted in your crib at least 12" forward from where you started. You can also roll onto your side from your back.

Special moments: You've been able to spend time with most of your close family this month and will get to meet more over the next few months. You took your first bath after you lost your umbilical cord around 2.5 weeks old. You've been on many outings, but your first was to church when you were 6 days old. You also had your first Easter, which your brother, Caleb, enjoyed enough for the both of you :).

Here are some pictures of your month old self and a comparison pic of you and Caleb for good measure :).


Day 92- Alone

Now, being alone might be a negative for some people, but when you haven't been truly alone for over 4 weeks- it's a luxury! Alan watched the kids while I ran errands for a couple hours this afternoon. It's amazing how much you can get done when you have no children to tote around :). I made it to Starbucks, the bank, the post office, a consignment store, Carter's, and Costco all within 2 hours! I love my boys, but having a few hours of solitude made my day!! Maybe being a parent increases your enjoyment of the simple things in life :).

Also, for your enjoyment - Alan and Caleb's new trick...