Monday, March 26, 2012

Pin It!

So, I have a new addiction.  I am addicted to Pinterest.  I blame my sister for it.  Originally I had heard of it from my friend Emilie last year, but never really understood all that it entailed so I didn't pursue it other than looking at what Emilie had already pinned.  Fast forward a few months, my sister called and said I HAD TO BE ON IT, her exact words, and since I never back down from peer pressure..I joined.

Let me say this....BEST COOKBOOK EVER!!!  There are all sorts of things your can "pin", like clothing, house decor, art, kids projects....the list goes on and on.  I really only pin things to my recipe board.  And because I am such a stellar cook (are you laughing too?), I thought I would dedicate my two week break to my Pintrest meals.

Now, I waited until our break because it is really the only time I can "cook" and take my time.  I like that I used that word "cook" if that is what happens here on a regular basis.  I enjoy cooking when it is me in the kitchen being one with my pots, pans, and utensils and I am not simultaneously going over homework with Matt or making a homework sheet up for Ryan so he doesn't feel left out because he has no homework.  (won't that come back to bite him later on!) My favorite time to cook is when the music is blasting and Ryan and I break out into dance or sing at the top of our lungs...that is a good time!

The first thing I made were these babies!!!  Strawberries filled with a cream cheese mixture, topped with graham cracker crumbs.  YUM!  I took them to Emilie's when Matt and I went to visit her, Andersen and Marshall.  Andersen was so stinkin' cute sitting across from me saying, "Mo strawberries pease."  Come on!  How cute is that! 

The next thing I made is this salad dressing.  It is the creamy pesto salad dressing that Old Spaghetti Factory serves on its salad.  Rich and I don't necessarily like the meals at the restaurant, but we always would go there just to have the salad.  So when I found this recipe....JACKPOT!  It was soooo good!

Next, creamy pesto chicken with a to-die-for cous cous.  The night before Valentine's Day, Rich and I went to Rosewood downtown because I had gotten a gift card from a couple of my students for Christmas.  I ordered halibut and it came with a cous cous dish that was so unbelievably good...I had to make it at home.  So, I went online and typed in all the ingredients: cous cous, bacon, mushrooms, and spinach.  I was able to find a recipe that was similar and made it to go with this chicken.  I could have eaten just the cous cous and done away with the chicken, but the boys loved the chicken so it was a win win.

I then made chicken parmesan (no picture) and zucchini.  I needed a new way to make zucchini to trick the boys into eating it.   This was also so good...but it does take some nutritional value away when served with ranch, I get that.

And this last one was just okay, but my friends Kelly's was better.  Chicken, garlic, and spinach pasta topped with mozzarella.  Looking back, I would go against the recipes instructions to not cover it because the cheese melted and burnt a little.

We got Matt and Ryan's baseball schedules the other took me forty-five minutes to put all practices and games into my phone and as I was doing it, I thought to myself...Go hit up Pintrest for slow cooker meals!  Because they either have practice or a game each night and there is no way I am going to find the time to "cook" anything after work before the game.  What fun!

Here are links to all recipes....
(did not do cornflake crumbs, but did a mixture of parmesean cheese and bread crumbs)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Low Snow!

Last weekend we took advantage of the storm that came through and found snow in crazy low elevation! The place we were headed to was a golf course that we have played at before with friends, was now closed to ALL TRESPASSERS, which I think is code for "all you freaks that think this is a snow park when it storms this low." So, we took the next turn up into a semi-residential neighborhood and found a semi-abandoned road to play around in.

I kept taking pictures of outside as we were driving because it was unbelievable how much snow there was...and we were only 50 minutes from Lodi.

So gorgeous!

Okay, last one.

Time to get our sled on!  Turned out that the groove of the tire track was the best place to slide down.

Glove malfunction.

Freezing, happy boy.

Freezing, crazy boy.

Oh yeah...and we brought this baby with us too.  He got out, ran around, loved the snow and then slept in his bed in the backseat for the rest of the time.  Apparently he is more of a fair weather dog.

Doesn't he look so happy to be heading home?  In his bed, warm, and in between the boys.  Heaven.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Geeking Out!

What better way to spend your spring break from school than fueling your brain with more knowledge!  Nana Bobbie took us on a day trip to the city to visit the California Academy of Science and we all got our geek on!

A friend to greet us!

Inside the rain forest.

You have to look hard sometimes...but they're there!

Matthew trying so hard to be still for a butterfly to land on him. 

And if only we could just touch it...just for a second.

Sometimes Nana's have all the luck.

What I loved about the rain forest is the the creatures inside flying around could care less we were there and seemed completely unfazed by people like me who were invading their space.

This was the closest he got.  Look close, it was there for a split second.

Red eyed tree frog sleeping.

 Electric Eel thumb pads...when you press them,they give you a jolt of what it would feel like to touch this type of eel.

And this anaconda stick your arm in the hole and for eleven seconds it gives the feeling of an anaconda squeezing its prey.

Starfish are always cool.....always!

Ryan with his sleeves rolled up and ready for business.

As cool as these are, nothing compares to the jellyfish room at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

This I am going to let speak for itself. 

I hate eels.  I mean I HATE THEM!  The last time we were in Hawaii, I was out snorkeling in the ocean...way farther out than I realized I was...and I happened to see an eel swim out of a patch of rocks and head into this massive piece of corral.  I started screaming at the top of my lungs and my mom said they could hear the screams coming out of the top of the snorkel on shore.  Yep, I just don't care for them.  However, we spent a huge amount of time at this window because the boys were fascinated. 

A little taste of what is to come...
I was lucky to take this picture because the sign that was posted outside said, "Children Eel Viewing".  And Ryan took GREAT OFFENSE to me coming into this tiny "kids only" space to take this picture. 

Up on the rooftop...

The best part of the day, for me and Matthew, was the show inside the Planetarium.  It was amazing and lined up PERFECTLY with my fifth grade curriculum.  Matthew loved it because it talked about planets,  volcanoes, weather...all things he can't get enough of.  At one point as we were laying back in our seats watching the movie I could hear him say, "This is so cool."  Enough said.

And of course, we can't go home empty handed.  Snakes for everyone!

Thank you Nana for a great day!!!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Happy Birthday Grandma Jean!

On Sunday we headed to Fresno to celebrate Grandma Jean's birthday.  The kids were so excited to see their cousins that they left a day early to spend as much time as possible with Mason and Mikayla. 

Even though the birthday party was really for Grandma, somehow Rich and Mike were included on the cake.  

The birthday girl starting off the celebration.

Okay, so even though these next couple of pictures are COMPLETELY OUT OF FOCUS...I had to include them because I was laughing so hard taking them and because the three of them would not sit still, especially Jean, and Mike and Rich were goofing off and egging her on, which made these worthless....AND HILARIOUS!

Grandma Jean and the great-grandkids!

The Four Fruit-Loops!

Happy Birthday to Grandma Jean....Rich.....and Mike.