Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Easy Meal Monday: Chicken tacos.

Mondays are Rough. They always have been. But now with two kids, one that I need to get out the door to school with a full belly (lunch isn't till 1!!) with a healthy lunch packed (why don't I EVER do this the night before?) homework done and checked off and make sure he looks presentable and has clean socks on. Not to mention a baby that wants to nurse during that time at Least once. Mornings, especially Monday mornings are hectic. 

I'm slowly coming up with ways to make mondays less crazy and hectic and more enjoyable. One simple solution I have come up with to help with the mondays, is Easy Meal Monday! Every monday the last few weeks I have make a super simple dinner, and even though it's such a simple idea, it's really helping! 

This past Monday I made one of our favorites. And SO EASY. I'm sure everyone knows this chicken taco trick but I didn't till about a year ago so maybe someone else isn't familiar with it also. If so, you are welcome. Consider your life forever changed. 

Here's what you do.

Grab two frozen chicken breasts from your freezer ( I always have buy chicken when it's on sale since organic, grass fed chicken is expensive, also I can't touch raw chicken, so when I buy a bunch I make Drew cut off any fat, and bag it in individual baggies so all I have to do is grab a couple) and throw them in the crockpot.

Next, grab a jar of salsa, and dump it over the chicken. Simple right?

Turn the crock pot on. Low for 7-8 hrs or high for 4-5. I usually forget to throw this all together till I put Tindra down for her second nap around 12:30-1 so I usually have to cook it on high so it's done by 6ish. 

I'm sure you are wondering what else you have to do, but that's it! I know it sounds too good to be true, and it almost is. 

The chicken just falls about, self shreds itself, it's like magic!

When it's done all you do is throw it on a pita and add some topics. Monday we did lettuce and sour cream because that's all I had. Remember, it was a Monday. But we love to add tomatoes, black olives and shredded cheese as well. 

Now make this on a hectic day and you will be thanking me. 

Do you have any easy go to meals for especially hectic days? 

Monday, November 26, 2012


One of my favorite things about having my own family during the holidays is starting our own traditions. Our first Christmas as a family, we were living 700 miles away from any family and we were going to Iowa and then North Carolina for a 3 week long Christmas vacation, so we knew we shouldn't go to crazy buying Christmas decorations for our apartment since we weren't even going to be there for most of December. Plus, we didn't exactly have hundreds of dollars to spend on that anyway. But we did go out and buy a little fake tree, some red and gold balls and started the tradition of each of us picking out one new ornament a year. It wasn't much to start, but this is our 6th year of doing that, and each year I pick up a decoration or two for the house, and now we have enough to decorate our house AND the entire tree in one of a kind ornaments picked out just by us each year.

This was the first year we didn't put any other ornaments on our tree (except for a couple small Swedish ones we picked up while in Sweden in 2009) and every single ornament on our tree is one of a kind (in our house anyway!) and super special to us. 

This year was our first time (obviously) taking Tindra to pick out an ornament and Jasper's 6th!! time! Such a special family memory that I can't wait to experience every year!

The hair that won't hold a curl

My hair is relatively thick, and super soft and won't hold a damn curl! Do you guys have any tips for making curls stay in?? Mine simply won't hold a curl. See for yourself.

Right after I curled it. Love it. Loose, soft curls.

About 45 minutes later. Still pretty curly. Still liking it. 
 Two hrs later, not so curly anymore. Still kind of like it though. 

5-6 hrs later. Not curly. Not cute. Not liking it. 

Any magical products that will make my hair stay curly? 

Friday, November 23, 2012

Park in the dark

We had such a low key, relaxing family thanksgiving. The whole 'living 700 miles away from any family' thing can be bittersweet. Like not having 5 thanksgiving meals to go like some can be a good thing! We got to relax at home, slowly cook our favorites (green bean casserole, cucumber salad, MASHED POTATOES-favorite) in our pajamas instead of rushing around like so many seem to do. 

My cousin, who is in his last semester at DU for his masters came over for dinner followed by games. In between dinner and dessert we took a much needed walk in the brisk air. It was Just what we needed. We let Jasper run around at the park and he was in Heaven! He kept shouting 'park in the dark, park in the dark, park in the daaaaark.' Reminded me of our time in Sweden when park outings in the dark where a daily occurrence in the winter when it was pitch black by 3:30 PM. 

Our new polarn o pyret gear kept the kids nice and warm on this 35 degree night! Plus the reflectors were needed since there were no lights at the park! Tindra was so cozy in her new snowsuit she was OUT within 5 minutes on our walk, and it wasn't even 6!

I'm So enjoying this 4 day weekend with my family. I can't believe we have TWO more days of it! Today was spent taking down the pool- UGH, such a pain in the @ss, literally. I fell on ice while doing it. Long story- and a little family black friday shopping in the afternoon when we hit up the mall and target. 

Hope you guys are having as great of a weekend as I am!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Where are you shopping for black friday deals?

Do you have any tips/links for the best deals? 

So far I know I need to be on the hunt for the best deals on a wii and possibly kindle fire. Perhaps amazon? I really don't want to stand in line at 2 in the morning at best buy or anything like that. I think I'm getting too old for that! (But apparently wasn't last year or the year before)

I also heard my favorite kids store polarn o pyret is launching their holiday line (I saw pics!!) on Friday with a sweet discount so I'll be hitting that up for sure. 

Know of any other great deals I need to know about- preferably ones I can participate in from the coziness of my couch and computer?

Happy Thanksgiving and black friday shopping!!! 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

What's the point of having a blog if you can't plaster it with pictures of your adorable kids? 

Monday, November 19, 2012

Breastfeeding myths

(These were just myths to ME, I realize all women have different breastfeeding experiences)

Myth number one.
Breastfeeding is Easy. So much easier than bottle feeding. 

Uh No. It's not. It's one of the hardest things I've ever done. And From latching issues, mastitis, over supply, UNDER supply, a baby that even now at almost 7 months often wants to eat every hr when she's awake, cracked bleeding nipples, none of that is EASY. It took countless nurses and lactation consultants helping me the first 3 days at every feeding, how is that easy? I absolutely hate when I hear women telling pregnant or new moms that it's easy. I think that's setting them up for failure. Thinking, oh well it's so easy for her why is is SO HARD for me? I definitely thought that way many times when people would tell me how Easy it would be. It's 7 months and it's STILL hard.  Bottles now THEY are easy. Pour milk in bottle, warm it up, stick it mouth. No having to plan what you wear to make sure your baby has easy access to the food supply, no chapped nipples, EASY. And so what if you have to wash a few bottles a day. Big deal. Way easier.

Myth number 2, breast feeding will make you loose all your weight instantly.

Again, NOPE not true. YES breast feeding makes you burn calories, but ya know what else it does? MAKE YOU EAT. Especially that first month, I was Never full. I went out to eat pizza with my mom when T was like 2.5 weeks old and ordered a large pizza, ate it all and STILL wasn't full. I'm still way hungrier now then when not breast feeding or even pregnant, and I eat. A lot. So yeah breast feeding is burning a lot of calories, but I'm also eating a ton of calories. They equal each other out.

Anyone else have any breast feeding 'myths'?

(I hope this doesn't sound negative. I'm 10000000% for breast feeding, I just wish everyone wouldn't have told me how EASY it was, when clearly, for me it was Not) 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Anonymous asks..

"You talk a lot about Sweden(obsessed?) and call yourself Swedish, but weren't you born in America?"

Yes and Yes!!

I was born in America, West Palm Beach Florida to be exact. To an american (Italian) mom and my 100% Swedish dad who moved to Florida when he was in his early 20's. We moved to Sweden when I was like 2 and a half and lived there (with the exception of a year in Bali) till I was 11. So yes, I was born in America and yes, I also consider myself Swedish since all of my childhood are centered around being Swedish and growing up in Sweden. When we moved to the US, Swedish was my first language. I thought in Swedish, though could speak good English because my mom spoke English to us at home, but everything else was done in Swedish.

And am I obsessed with Sweden? Probably. How could I NOT be? It's such a beautiful amazing country, full of equal rights, social democracy, 24 hrs of sunlight in the summer (and lots of cozy darkness in the winter) delicious foods, beautiful people, amazing fashion, I could go on and on.. and I tend to :)

I'll let some of these pictures speak for themselves

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

I needed to put some clothes away in Tindra's room yesterday so I brought her in with me and put her in her crib for a minute. Jasper immediately came running in and asked if he could climb in too. At first I said "Sorry Jasper you are just too big for a crip!" And then remembered that it was only 1.5 years ago that he was in one (what?!?!) and he has only gained maybe two lbs (but like 5 inches) since then. So in he climbed!

Tindra's face immediately lit up when he laid down next to her. She sure does love her big brother! He sang to her, tickled her toys, and just talked to her. All the things she loves best.

As I  was putting the last of her clothes away I heard him whisper
"I love you I love you I love you"

He truly does love his sister so much. I hope one day she realizes just how lucky she is to have him.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Late afternoons/early evenings are the toughest parts of my day usually. Jasper is home from school and I miss him so much during the day I want that to be OUR time. He is ready for that time too, snacks, cuddles, books and game time with his mamma. (Yes he still calls me mamma.)

 There's just one adorable little girl standing in the way of that. And evenings she has decided need to be all about HER. While she is the easiest baby from the hours of 7PM and 4:30 PM she has decided those 2.5 hours before bed time she would prefer to eat (on and off) every 15 minutes, be held and entertained constantly, preferably with at least  2 baths during that time frame for her pleasure/distraction. 

The other 'problem' is that Drew doesn't usually get home till 6:30-7, and we need dinner to be made during that time as well. So entertaining two littles who are no where near into the same things during both their neediness time, while also preparing dinner was proving to be a little difficult. 

I needed a solution to keep everyone happy, sane and fed.

Answer: Long walk to the store, with a swing by the park on the way home, where our dinner is waiting in the crock pot. Also, bumped Jasper's bed time back by 15-20 minutes so we get typically about 30-45 4minutes of just US time after Tindra is in bed for the night.

We started this last week and so far it's going great. We are always in need of at least 1 thing from the store, and the one day I couldn't think of anything we needed we went for a special treat and shared a candy bar. 

I've really started looking foroward for these evening walks. Tindra is distracted by the outdoors and usually a pumped bottle to keep her satisfied so I get some uninterrupted time with my little man to hear all about his day at school. After we have covered the school talk we play a game he invented where we look at our surroundings and name things we see in Swedish. Fun AND educational!

Now I just need some more crock pot ideas so we aren't eating chicken/veggies in the crock pot every night. Have any to throw my way? 

Saturday, November 10, 2012

A day in Paleo

I've gotta be honest. I'm getting SICK of this diet. I just want some damn bread! And pasta! But it's been three weeks now, and I'm going to try to make it another week. Then slowly add foods back in. But not as much! Something good long term wise has to come out of this 4 week torture!

Here's what a day in paleo looks to me (yesterday)

Blueberry/banana/coconut milk/cucumber smoothie. 

Leftover quiche from last night (eggs, coconut milk, spinach, red pepper, cheese) and bacon


Home made paleo crackers- SO good! Cheese and Apple slices

Drew through this together and it was Delicious! Potatoes, chicken on the grill, cream, asparagus and black olives

And another snack

Banana and almond butter. I don't like almonds but love almond butter- weird?

And that's it. Totally doable and everything I ate was delicious. I'm just running out of a variety I think! 

Friday, November 9, 2012

My half Swedish baby likes to act like a 'real' Swedish baby and nap outside. It's fine by me! Even if it is 44 degrees and dropping and I sit 10 feet away freezing my bootay off.

Jasper Says

'Mom look at the picture I made, that's me when I was batman for Halloween, and that's daddy with Tindra on his shoulders and that's you with pink hair'

'Wow what a great picture Jasper, who is this in blue?'

'That's my baby brother that I'm going to have'

So there's that. It's been decided by Jasper. He wants a baby brother. 

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The perfect Saturday

with my family consisted of.. watching cartoons on the couch with my babies. Followed by an extra long hot shower while T took her morning now. After she woke up we headed to Cherry Creek, our favorite neighborhood in Denver. I MISS living right there in the middle of the action.

We spent late morning walking around cherry creek, playing at the park and grabbing lunch at my favorite, Mad Greens. 

 Jasper was convinced he is better than me at the rings..turns out he is right. NO upper arm strength for me!

 His face because he had to leave the park. 

His face when he realized we were having salads for lunch!

Whats your idea of a perfect fall Saturday?