Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Trains and Ducks

A week ago (2/19) we headed to Houston for a quick trip.  My friend had a doctor's appointment in Houston so I drove her up for her appointment and then we spent the night at my parents.  We met my mom for lunch before heading to her appointment.

Of course it's always a great day when Brady gets to see his Mimi!

During her appointment, my mom and I took B. to ride the train over by the zoo.  We were literally a few blocks away so it worked out perfectly.  And it was a gorgeous day!

These are the moments I treasure more than anything.  Getting to spend everyday with my sweet boy, exploring this world, and seeing it through his eyes.   There are days I long to go back to work but then I have days like this one where God gently reminds me to savor this precious time.  It's time I won't ever get back!  I can always make money later in life but I can't back these days or years.

After the train ride, which just about put B to sleep, we walked over to the duck pond (Hermann Park).  Brady loved chasing the ducks and scaring me to death by getting way too close to the water.
Here ducky, ducky...

 Love this!!!!!

"We’re only here for a little while
And God gives us only so much precious time
So don't let it slip on by..."
-Slip on By by Finding Favour

Wednesday I had an appointment to get my haircut and then we headed back home that afternoon.  It was a short trip but a sweet one!

Ace's Birthday Weekend

This last weekend we went up to my brother's to celebrate my nephew Ace's birthday.  He turned 2 the day before Valentine's.  I was so excited to finally get a chance to go see their new house and spend some time with them.  And I knew Brady would love getting to spend some time with his cousins.

It was a good 5 hour drive there so we kind of broke the trip up.  On the way there and on the way back we stopped at our home away from home, Bryan/College Station.  Oh how we miss that place!  And pray we someday can make it back to call home.

Oh this is my whole world.  And a "framer" ha!
Friday night we stopped to grab dinner at Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers.

It was heaven!  We loved eating there when we lived in San Antonio and now Bryan has one.  Brady got to enjoy his first Freddy's steakburger.  He was more interested in people watching than eating.  He is such a social butterfly!

After dinner, we had another hour and 15 minute drive.  We finally arrived at my brother's around 9:15pm.  We left our house around 2pm.  Yeah, but I must say Brady did great on the way up and the way home.  I can admit I was a bit anxious of how the trip would go.

Saturday was party day!  Ace had a tractor party.  He loves tractors!

I had already decided I wanted to make him a tractor shirt then when I got the invitation in the mail & saw the theme was tractors - I thought how perfect!  So I let him open that gift the night before so he could wear it for his party.  He looked adorable!  Well he is just precious regardless what he wears.  Gosh, I just love little boys!

The guys fried fish, french fries, and hush puppies while all the kids played.  It was a little windy, but beautiful day outside.


And it looks like B really needs one of these little play-sets.  He loved it!
After fish and cake...it was present time!

Saturday afternoon we all took naps and then got ready to head out for a night out on the town.  All the "kids" left the grandkids with Mimi and Papa so we could go to a local dance hall to see Aaron Watson.  It had been forever since any of us had been out dancing.  We had so much fun!!  It's not very often that I get to spend time with my brothers and sister-in-laws and never without kiddos.

We had the best time!  We laughed, danced, and people watched.  Thanks Mimi & Papa for watching the babies.  We all really enjoyed our night out!
Sunday morning we got up and got ready to head home.  We made plans to meet our good friends for lunch at AB's favorite fajita place, Los Cucos.  We also stopped by their house on the way up to let Brady stretch his legs a bit.  We miss them SO much!
And if you can't tell Brady really loves Miss Rylie!  Sooo stinkin' cute!  And Rylie is sooo good with Brady.  Another reason we wish we lived closer to them!!  We made it home around 6 Sunday evening.  We were all pretty worn out from the weekend but thankful for a wonderful weekend spent with family!

And from the looks of this next picture...I think someone really enjoyed themselves this weekend.  Talk about melt a momma's heart!!!!

By Saturday evening, the boys had warmed up to each other.  Mom (aka Mimi) took these pictures of them while we were out dancin'.  Precious!  What a great BIG brother Ace will be in a few weeks! 

 Brady really enjoyed a weekend full of cousins.  He loves playing with our other kids and I love to watch him interact with them.  Just stinks we all live so far away from each other!  Brady didn't sleep all that well while away so he was exhausted come Sunday.  But we did manage to get a group cousin photo and everyone was looking!  Just missing Madyson and Maddox!
Sweet cousins.  Can't wait until our next get together...hopefully spring break!  Thanks Uncle Justin, Aunt Nikki, and Ace for a fun-filled weekend!!!  Happy 2nd Birthday Ace!

What's for dinner??

Here's what I have planned for meals this week.

I've decided to plan breakfast, lunch, and dinner since we are trying to save money by not eating out.  And it's just over all healthier.  The only way to do this is meal plan and be prepared.  Makes it so much easier to eat in when I have everything I need readily available.  And putting it here helps me keep track of the menu.  Hopefully, you can get some ideas for your family as well.

For breakfast, I picked things that make a good amount so AB can just pop them into the microwave in the morning & hopefully last throughout the week.  Also picked some toddler friendly options.  Eggs, bacon, and waffles/pancakes get boring after a while.  I will freeze whatever we don't eat so we can have for another time/week.


Bird's Nest Breakfast Cups
Toddler Muffins - this would be great for a snack as well
Breakfast Burritos (or tacos in our part of the world)
Frozen waffles- already made & frozen
Eggs, bacon, & fruit

Lunch & Snacks:

Chubby Chicken & Cream Cheese Taquitos
Bacon Wrapped Baked Apple Slices
Mini Paleo Pizzas
Sandwiches or Wraps with fresh fruit or chips & avocado


Monday: Italian Chicken Casserole - This was my 1st time to make this.  It was really good and easy to make.  Makes a 9x13 so great for lunch and left-overs.  Next time I will probably split it up and freeze half.

Tuesday: Roasted Whole Chicken - Preheat oven to 250 degrees.  Take a whole chicken, rinse and pat dry.  Season with Nature's Seasoning Blend and black pepper.  Put onions and celery into cavity of bird.  Drizzle olive oil on bottom on heavy roasting pan (I use an enamel roasting pot) with a layer of onions, carrots, and celery.  You can also add potatoes if you wanted or any veggies really.  Lay chicken on top and drizzle with a little more olive oil.  Put lid on pot and roast in oven for 2-3 hours until chicken is done.

Wednesday: Leftovers

Thursday: Pioneer Woman's Perfect Salmon with asparagus


Friday: Cheesy Chicken Tator Tot Casserole in the crockpot.  This is a new recipe I'm trying.

Saturday: Homemade pizza with hamburger meat & various toppings.  I already have a can of pizza dough & HEB pizza sauce so we will use that with traditional pizza toppings.

Sunday: Taco Salad - browned hamburger meat, flavored with taco seasonings served with shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, homemade guacamole, cheese & sour cream piled on top of tortilla chips.  Easy!!!

Now to get working on my grocery list and get to the store.  What's on your menu this week???