Friday, October 1, 2010

Random pics from the last couple months


Max had his first ever surgery on 9/24. We've known that ever since he had his circumcision that the skin was healing over where the 'snips' were. His pediatrician was concerned that as he got older the chances of problems with him going to the bathroom would increase. At his 9 mo checkup the pediatrician recommended that we speak with a Urology specialist at Children's to see.  We went in late August and met with the specialist and he recommended the surgery. I asked if he thought it was really necessary. He explained some of the problems if we let this go on longer and he was quite concerned and wanted to do the surgery as soon as his schedule allowed it.

So, that is where we ended up on 9/24.  The Children's National Medical Center has a smaller outpatient surgical office near us (right down the street from where we work/next door to where I go to PT). We were told to be there at 8:30 am and to make sure that Max didn't have anything to eat/drink after 5:30 am. We got there and they did all the admissions paperwork and then we went back to the pre-op room to get Max dressed and so they could do a brief exam while we waited for his surgeon and the anesthesiologist.

His surgeon/Urologist is really a nice man. The whole team there was so great. They were so patient and tender and caring - not just to Max but also to us. They really kept us all at ease and comfortable.

The surgery took only ~35 minutes and then he had to stay in recovery for about another hour or so. We left there around 11:30 ish and went back home.

He was more than miserable the rest of the day. My heart broke for him being in such pain and the Motrin/Tylenol regimen just really didn't seem to take the edge off for him until about 1-2am. By the next morning he was doing much, much better.

Quick recap

Had to change the blog to private a while bag. Caught wind that some friend of the 'ex' got my blog and was passing it around. Scared me since I want nothing to do with the 'ex' or his buddies.

At any rate, so here we are, nice and private.

Max had his first haircut on his 10 month birthday, 9/2/10.



He looks like such a different little dude now!

Monday, June 21, 2010


Mr Man graduating from his Winter/Spring Bug's class at the Little Gym! Adorable :)

Saturday, June 19, 2010


So this morning Mr Man took a nice long nap which allowed me to take a nice long shower and clean the bathroom. You'd think something as simple as cleaning the bathroom would be sorta blah and not post worthy, but I'm a gal who likes to have a sparkly clean bathroom! And I'm really particular about my cleaning products.

For those of you who are like uber "Eco" this and Eco that...shoo! This ain't the post for you (or the blog for you for that matter!).

But I'm also mildly OCD and like to clean. I also like doing dishes. And laundry. I just don't always have the time or energy to do all that I *want* to do these days.

So over the last few years I've really narrowed down a few of my favorite cleaning products. These are the staples I use daily and keep my house sparkly clean and keep the germs away!

1. Lysol disinfecting wipes.  Thank you Lysol for this godsend of a product.

If you go into any bathroom in my house - there is a bottle in each one. I use them mostly as the toilet seat/tank cleaner. That way, no yucky sponge to have to keep just for that nasty task.

They're also great for quick wipe-downs/spills in the kitchen.

Or cleaning up cat poop off the floor in the basement bathroom.

Sorry but ya'll know it happens when after a week and papa-bear still hasn't cleaned out their litter box. (I refuse to- they're his cats and therefore the litter box is his duty!!)

2. Clorox Clean-Up

This is my go-to cleaner for the kitchen and the bathroom sinks.

3. Arm & Hammer Scrub Free

This is the best cleaner I've found for the shower. It gets rid of the soap scum on the glass surround in our shower. I've never seen something work so good. I just spray it on the glass doors/tile walls and turn the water on to get hot. I like showering in a clean shower, so I grab a sponge and get in, give a quick wipe to the doors/walls and then shower myself. Its a lot easier all around and when I get out - there isn't a soap scum spot on the doors at all. Its really great!

4. Scotch Brite - No Scratch sponges

These are the blue ones and the ONLY sponges I use. They last for ages, don't scratch anything (I use a lot of non-stick bake ware and bone chine and these are awesome on those) and clean everything great! I'm hooked for LIFE!

5. The Dyson Slim

I got this vacuum shortly after moving here. For two reasons.

One I'm allergic to Sam's 2 cats and want to clean up as much hair as possible. I vacuum every 2-3 days. I also want something easy to carry up and down our tri-level house.

Two - I hate buying filters for a vacuum.

Here's my pet peeve. I had a great vacuum a few years ago from Hoover. There was nothing wrong with it at all. I used it for 2-3 years then I started noticing it was harder and harder to find the HEPA filters (it was a bagless cyclonic, so no bag worries there). I noticed that the 'latest and greatest' took a different kind of filter and that was all the stores were carrying. So, either start ordering the filters online (because I literally could not find a store within a reasonable distance who carried the filters) or get a new vacuum.

I chose the latter. I don't have to worry about any of that anymore. I get a great vacuum and don't have to buy anything else for it...ever! (well, I suppose unless we break something and need a replacement part.)

6. Lysol disenfecting spray

I use this mostly now for the trash cans and especially the diaper pail! Keeps it clean and smelling good :)

So that's it. That's my list of my favorite cleaning products.

Lists are good!

I've always been a list person. For a little while now, I've gotten out of the habit of writing lists. But ever since Mr Man has been born, I'm realizing I need to get back into the habit of it. I keep forgetting everything!

So some days my lists are as simple as:
1. Take shower
2. Do dishes
3. Do Mr Man's laundry
4. Take junk on main level upstairs/to basement.
5. Go to bed early!

Even mundane things that get done that day, with a list, makes me feel like I accomplished something. Plus, it helps me not get sidetracked (which is easy and happens often) and if I do get sidetracked, the lists often help me get back to what I was doing faster, rather than trying to recall what it was I was doing.

But in addition to daily lists, I have lists to accomplish in the broader spectrum. Like things I want to do this summer, this year, within 5 years, within 10 years, before I die, etc. Some of this list making I've just always done but some of it I learned when I worked at the financial planning firm (Waddell & Reed, for 8 years).

It helps me strive towards them by keeping me accountable. Especially when it comes to stuff that takes finances.

For instance here's a small snapshot of a few of my lists:

To do this summer:
1. Swim with Max- lessons ideally
2. Little Gym 7 week classes
3. Organize the home office
4. Finish hanging pictures/artwork around the house.
5. Master and implement meal planning -either weekly or monthly and stick to it!

To do this year:
1. Figure out the minivan/SUV situation - either buy this year or figure out when to do it for next year
2. Paint the basement
3. Get the basement ready for Mr Man as a playroom
4. Change out the 'guest' bath decor to be more kiddo friendly and get it ready to be Mr Man's bathroom
5. Master couponing/grocery cycles to and track spending so that by the end of the year, I have a finite budget and can make it all stick!

To do in 5 years:
1. Be able to say we're debt free (minus the mtg) - which includes the last of my school loan + whatever minivan/SUV we're getting this year (or early next year)
2. Hopefully we can say we have 3 kids?!
3. Move out of the townhouse into a house with more bedrooms and bigger kitchen (ours is plenty big overall and we really like it, but it is short on bedrooms and the kitchen is teeny tiny).
4. Start homeschooling Mr Man and then other future kids as well

To do in 10 years:
1. Take a big family vacation each year
2. Go to Hawaii for a vow renewal on the beach
3. Go to Disney-world in Orlando for a week (with Sam's family too?!)

Friday, June 18, 2010

The Blues

Not sure why but lately I've had the blogging blues. I have a whole bunch of posts/topics in my head all day, every day, but once the evening comes and it is the time for me to sit down and write...I'm lazy and just put it off.

I have a bunch of pictures and catch-up posts to write...soon!

Until then...cutie pics:

(seriously, look at those chunkum legs!)

Also, as an aside. Shortly after Mr Man was born, my mom shared one of her favorite Bible passages with me. I can see why- I love it now as much as she does.

Psalm 139 (the whole Psalm is good but 13-16 is the best part!)
 13 For you created my inmost being;        
you knit me together in my mother's womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
       your works are wonderful,
       I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
       when I was made in the secret place.
       When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,
16 your eyes saw my unformed body.
       All the days ordained for me
       were written in your book
       before one of them came to be.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Just a quickie

I got this at Target today for $8. Yep $8.
I used a TON of coupons and had a little luck.

Luck being that a $1 off coupon didn't scan and the cashier was flustered so it looks like instead of overriding it with the $1 she entered $3.18, which was the cost of the item. That makes up for the fact that a different cashier didn't enter in my B1G1 item amount, thus negating the 'free' item I was supposed to get.

More later on this but all in all, it was a successful day at Target. In the previous transaction, I spent $81 but saved $90. Not bad. And it is all on stuff we use often/daily with long and/or no expiration dates (paper and cleaning products mostly). Hurray for cheap, cheap stockpiling.

To learn more about some of the target deals, go here. Scroll down a bit and you'll see about the Scrubbing Bubbles deals.

Also, go here to use the Coupon Database. It is very simple. Just enter what you're looking for in the description field and hit search. Or watch the tutorial listed above the database.

And remember, at Target you can use their coupon + manufacturer coupon for the same item, and can buy multiples of those same items/coupons in the same transaction. Makes for some good, good deals. To find the Target coupon section go to and scroll all the way down to the bottom of the main page. Under the bold Target Stores title you'll see the links to the Weekly Ad and the link to the coupons. Wahlah!

Happy shopping!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

7 Months!

Well yesterday, 6/2/2010, Mr Man turned 7 months old!

He celebrated by officially crawling.

He's been scooting and sorta rocking on his hands/knees for about 1.5 - 2 weeks now. But up until yesterday he hadn't put all the pieces together.

Boy oh boy can he move around quickly!

Lets see, at 7 months Mr Man:

  • Can crawl
  • Can roll from tummy and back
  • Eats rice cereal/oatmeal and other 2nd foods, in addition to his mommy-milk
  • Just tried the rice 'puffs' thingamajig- mixed reviews. He frowns upon putting one in his mouth, then smiles a bit later with tasting it. I think the texture throws him off at the moment.
  • Wears size 9mo clothes comfortably, some smallish fitting 12mo clothes
  • Eyes are still blue
  • Hair is a dark blonde - with some strawberry tones in the right light
  • Loves to laugh
  • Has no teeth still
  • Can sit independently - but cannot sit up (from a laying position) or pull himself up (thank goodness)
  • Takes roughly 2 naps per day and still isn't sleeping through the night (oh how I can't wait for that)

Friday, May 28, 2010


So recently I started couponing. Well, actually I've been doing it for years but in a very basic fashion. Unbeknown to me, there is an art to it.

For instance, I wasn't aware that you can use a store brand coupon (like a Target only coupon) plus a manufacturer's coupon for the same item.
You can also use those same coupons x however many items of those you are buying in the same transaction.
Additionally, certain (grocery) stores will double and/or triple the manufacturer's coupons (sometimes they place limits, like up to $1 or how many coupons you can use per day).

Here are some great sites/blogs for coupons and deals that I've found so far! - this site is great if you live in an area for any of the stores they list.

Coupon sites:

Also at Target - they have their own coupons you can print and stack with the manufacturer ones!

Now I should say that with the coupon sites above, you will likely need to install a printer program/javascript to allow you to print the coupons. They've been perfectly safe on my computer.

I also recommend that in addition to using your home zip code try some others from around the country - you'll see different coupons pop up.

Thursday, May 27, 2010


 I'm not sure why but recently I've had a hankering for some S'mores!

Problem is, we don't have any real good way to cook it outside (well there is the gas grill but that involves some setting up and I am feeling lazy). And honestly, it worked out really well this way: no burnt marshmallows. I know there is a large amount of people out there that love burnt marshmallows. I am not one of those people. I prefer mine toasted and gooey but definitely not burnt.

So, I decided to cook some S'mores inside.

Here's what I did.


First, preheat your oven to 300degrees.

Then, line a baking sheet with some foil, shiny side up.

Next, get the amount of ingredients ready for however many S'mores you want to make. I wanted four. So that meant 4x graham crackers (broken in half), 4 marshmallows and 1 chocolate bar, broken into 4 pieces.
(please don't judge me on the shadows, I'm making this at night with no natural light)

Arrange your S'mores on the baking sheet like so (think open faced sammich):

Place your S'mores into the oven. If your marshmallows attempt a getaway like mine did, make sure to place them back on their graham cracker before shutting the door.

Once they're in the oven, set a timer for 4 minutes. I use the microwave, I'm lazy.

Once the timer goes off, take them out of the oven and carefully smoosh your S'more sammiches together (that is technical language btw). Take care to not burn your fingers on the hot baking sheet.

Grab a glass of milk, or other drink of your choosing, and enjoy the yumminess of S'mores!

Bacon Wrapped Chicken and Roasted Potatoes

So a few days back I made this for dinner:

Bacon wrapped chicken legs and roasted potatoes. OMG it was really yummy!

To make the chicken legs-

I just took some 5 chicken legs and wrapped 2 pieces of bacon around them and lay them in a pan. I put the pan in the oven at 375 degrees for about 50 min.

To make the roasted potatoes-
Cut up your favorite potatoes into bite sized pieces. I used about 4 potatoes.
Place them in a large mixing bowl.
Sprinkle 1 package of Onion Soup Mix (can use Lipton or the store brand).
Add 1/3 cup Vegetable Oil and mix well.
Place on a baking tray (I used a glass 9x13 baking dish, lined with foil for easy cleanup)

Ideally you want to put the potatoes in a 425 oven for 35 min.

For this night, I put them in with the chicken. They came out fine at a lower temp for a longer time. They weren't as crispy as normal but they were certainly good!

Random Mr Man Pics

Its been a busy couple weeks.

Here's what we've been up to!
Sleeping in his own crib!

BTW this device is awesome! You can put fresh fruits/veggies/ice etc into it and the mesh keeps the baby from choking on it, but they're still able to gum it and get the juice and nutrients from whatever you put in there.  So far Mr Man has had bananas, oranges and pears.

             Eating fresh oranges for the first time ever.

A couple nights ago, I mashed a little banana with my fork and gave it to Mr Man.  This is his reaction:
I'm honestly not sure why the face. He has loved bananas. I'm guessing it was the texture and not the taste.

So while out doing errands today, Mr Man proceeded to show mama his new face. He was doing this face all day long. I finally captured it while he was playing in the jumparoo.
While doing this face he also blows out his nose - sort of like a snort. Its really cute.  Maybe that's one of those faces that only a mother could love?

He's been scooting around real well these days.

He's taking an interest in the cats recently. Can't say they really share that interest.

Click on the picture below.  Take notice of the long stream of drool. He seriously creates puddles of drool these days. Its funny to hear Sam say: "omg get me a tissue!" "omg slobber bomb!" "omg he got me!" You'd think the baby has cooties or something with Sam's reaction to slobber!

Cheap baby stuff

Ok so this is old. I should have posted this a few weeks back, but I'm lazy so yeahhhh.

I had read online about these two mom's locally who organize a twice a year baby gear consignment sale (but at their houses, garage sale style). For those who aren't familiar with consignment - it is you giving your gently used, in really good (like new mostly) condition (no stains/rips/tears for clothing; all parts and must work properly for all toys/electronics/etc) items to someone to sell on your behalf. Upon sale of such an item, you get a portion of the profits as do they.

So at any rate, I got up and on the road by 8am. I got there around 8:20am and was one of only 2 people there! That was my goal, get there early and get the good stuff before its gone. :)  I wasn't all that interested in clothes - I wanted shoes for Mr Man and toys. If something else caught my eye at a good price, that would be a bonus.  So I hit the shoes first and got some great deals! Then wandered over to the toys and they had just what I was wanting and then some.  I wandered around a little bit and picked up some odds/ends. All totaled, I spent $76 and got all this:

Toys! 7 of them, I paid for the tall one was $10, rest were $2-4 each

I got a Land's End diaper bag ($8) and some Alphabet Cards wall art (I want this for the playroom/basement, $2)

I got 6 pairs of shoes: 1PediPed, 1 Gymboree, 1 BabyGap, 2 Robeez and 1 other. All were $3-4 a pair (the Robeez themselves go for around $25-30 a pair retail!).

4 Nuby sippy cups ($1) and 3 doorknob covers($1)

Size 12-18mo - BabyGap, Children's Place, Ralph Lauren. I paid $2-4 each.

Not bad, not bad! I got some great stuff for Mr Man and for a great price. I can't wait to go back for the fall sale!

And here we go, he loves them already!

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