Monday, August 25, 2014

Hannah is 3 Interview

The ELMO shoes
Hannah on her Birthday with her favorite big brother

Every year, I try to ask the kids a few questions.  I got these questions from my friend Kelli's blog.

What is your favorite color? Purple

What is your favorite toy?  My Minnie Book from Uncle Jeff

What is your favorite fruit? Pineapple

What is your favorite show?  Curious George

What is your favorite movie?  Toy Story

What is your favorite thing to wear?  My Elmo Shoes

What is your favorite animal?  Lion

What is your favorite song? Anna and Elsa Song

What is your favorite book? My Minnie Book

Who is your best friend?  David Choke Choate

What is your favorite snack? Fruit snacks

What is your favorite drink? Juice

What is your favorite breakfast? Rice (I was cooking rice)

What is your favorite lunch? Salt on Pancakes

What is your favorite dinner? Pizza (she had said this earlier)

What is your favorite game?  The Ninja Turtle game where she runs back and forth from the kitchen to the couch (she had to demonstrate this)

What is your favorite thing to do outside? Throw rocks at people

What is your favorite holiday? Going to Disneyland

What do you sleep with at night? My Teddy Bear (white one with a heart she got from Dad for Valentine's)

What do you want to be when you grow up? A Big Monster

Sunday, August 24, 2014

What's For Dinner? Sunday, August 24 - Sunday, August 31st

I did not make a theme this time when I made my menu plan.  But for fun, as I type, these up I am going to try and see if I can give each meal a theme.

Sunday - Meal Stretcher - Yummy Sausage Casserole - When it was getting low I just added more carrots and potatoes to make it stretch for leftovers.  I probably could have used 1/2 pd of sausage in each casserole and made two.  Recipe below.

Monday - Freezer Cooking Dinner - Hawaiian Chicken serve with rice and salad

Tuesday - Salad - we have either a ton of lettuce we will be either having taco salad AGAIN or a Cobb salad with eggs, lunch meat, cucumbers, cheese, peas, etc.

Wednesday - Breakfast for Dinner -German Pancakes with either apple pie filling or berries and greek yogurt on top.

Thursday - Quick Crockpot Dinner - Quick Stew Meat over Rice with homemade canned green beans

Friday - Dinner from the Pantry/Food Storage - Green Tomato Curry served over rice with coconut and cheese for toppings and anything else you would put on if you were making Hawaiian Haystacks

Saturday - Pizza Night - Either frozen Freschetta Pizza or Little Cesar's

Sunday -  Fend for yourself - Sandwiches, fruit, and chips


1 lb. finely cooked Maple Flavored Sausage (I just mixed maple syrup in), cube 2 potatoes (I would double or triple this), cube 2 carrots (same thing I would double or triple), and cook in foil (wrap like tinfoil dinner) place in 9 x 13 pan.  Bake @ 375 for 1 hour.  Serve with Garlic Bread.


Please, share your favorite recipes below in the comments or on your blogs.  I would love to try them.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

What's for Dinner? 8-18-14 through 8-25-2014

I decided I would have a theme night for most days of the week to add variety.  However, I am a little bit of a free spirit and can not have Spaghetti every week or Mexican night every Wednesday.  So which night is which theme will vary from week to week.  But I thought it would be helpful as I plan my week out to have the easier meals/crockpot meals be on busier days.  Planning also will help me so I can either start cooking dinner in the morning if I have down time or take meat out to thaw the night before.  However, unexpected things come up on days that would otherwise not be busy and for those days; freezer cooking or a frozen skillet meal will do in a pinch.

Monday - Italian - Spaghetti and Green Beans and leftover birthday cake for dessert

Tuesday - Breakfast for Dinner - Waffles, eggs, and bacon

Wednesday - Steak or Burgers- Quick Stew Meat Over Rice and Green Beans

Thursday - Mexican/Salad - Walking Tacos

Friday - Pizza - Frozen Freschetta Pizza

Saturday - Leftovers

Sunday - Cornbread Waffles with Chili and all the toppings (much like a taco salad)


Grocery Haul 8-16-14

Another video, I have been filming the last two weeks but it took me this long to post it.  I will plan on having these up every Friday.  That way if it is a deal you can score where you leave you should still be able to go shopping.

This week I took my daughter, Hannah, with me. We went to JcPenney, Smith's, and CVS drugstore.  We spent a total of around $68 on all of our groceries.  My friend, runs a small food bank and had extras so I went to her house and picked up romaine lettuce, bread for the freezer, a couple bags of apple slices, and some bottles of dressing.

Grocery Haul 8-8-14

I decided to do something different and film my grocery haul.  I hope you enjoy it.  I am trying to stick to $125 a week for consumables (food and most everything else you buy at the grocery store).  On these trips, I went to my local Walmart Neighborhood Market and Smith's Grocery Store.  I spent around $84.  If you want me to post more videos let me know.

Thanks for following me on my money saving adventures. (:

Click here  to watch the video.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Hitting the Walls in Life

Surely, if the Berlin Wall can come down.  The smaller and seemingly impossible to knock down walls in our life can with persistence and patience come down too.

Just like exercise when we hit a wall if we keep moving we find that our energy increases and our capacity enlarges.  We are no longer fighting against our weaknesses and excuses.  We become stronger.  We gather more confidence for next time.  And sometimes when we hit the same wall again we start to make excuses and give up in our mind.  We must not stop we must not give up.

I have hit a wall the last weeks with my budget.  With great sales, one on toys, one on clothes, and another deal for Christmas and birthdays I overspent. In August, there are two of my kid's birthdays and 5 other family members with birthdays so the budget is not working.  We have hit a little wall but I will break it down.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Hannah is Now THREE

This little girl is now three years old as of yesterday.  She now thinks she can drive, go on dates, and get married.  But we might just settle on taking her to Disneyland.  
 She has grown up so much in the last year.  Here she is taking a selfie, with Aunt Alyssa and her brother, Taylor
Meeting her brother, Ryan, for the first time, when he was a day old on August 18, 2013.

 Matchy matchy stripes
 Memorial Day Picnic with the Merkley Fam.  Cute Picture of Taylor, Hannah, and Madison.
 Impromptu science experiment on the front porch a couple weeks ago.  See below.  We were reading a book about rain and thought it would be fun to do something hands on.
Fun with sparklers, before the big firework show put on by Uncle Jeff in Great Grandpa Averett's backyard.
I love this girl.  I love having a daughter.  And feel so blessed to have her call me MAMA.

Slow down, Heaven Can Wait!

The title of this post sums up most of my thoughts.  Last night, I was running on the elliptical machine at the Rec Center.  I was trying to find a point to focus on.  I am right in front of some windows that overlook the big pool down below.  I decided to focus on a point in the ceiling beams right in front of me.

I started thinking about my Grandpa Merkley who passed away 5 years ago this August.  And I started running with the thought in mind, "Grandpa I am coming." (no, I do not have a death wish).  I just was excited thinking about someday being with my Grandpa again and wanting to live my life in such a way to be worthy of the love and mercy of Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father.  And to have the blessing of being with my family forever.

 I kept noticing  that the heart rate on the monitor kept beeping but I was in the running zone and did not pay much attention to it.  A couple minutes later I looked down and saw that my heart rate had gotten all the way up to 175 beats per minute.  YIKES!

I compare this too life.  Sometimes we get going too fast or have anxiety over our long to do list and all of our imperfections.  We end up tripping over our own feet or running ourselves into the ground.  Heavenly Father is often infinitely more patient with us than we are with ourselves.  He wants us to change and become better people.  And often the changing is the hard part.  While his divine love and help, he empowers us and forgives freely.

At church on Sunday, in Relief Society, our women's meeting, a sister got up to bear her testimony and said something I just loved.  She said, it is not so much the destination or the end result but the process/the living that is important.  Definitely something to think about while keeping an eternal perspective in mind.  The process is what refines us; the process is the purpose of life; and the end result comes because of the process not in spite of it.