Thursday, March 27, 2014

Sugar Free Kids - Breakfast

    Good morning!!!  So much for getting up regular posts huh?  I've been swamped with pattern testing, sewing up custom orders and then the stomach bug.  So not fun!  So, I have some sewing posts that will be up in the next few days but about a week ago we decided to cut ALL refined sugar out of my daughter Kessa's diet.  I'm doing Trim Healthy Mama so I had already cut it out of my own but getting it all out of my daughter's has been a bit more challenging.  Especially since we're still letting the other kids have some (although they are having significantly less just by proxy.)  I've found breakfasts to be the most challenging so far because our kids usually eat store bought bagels or Chobani yogurt tubes...both of which have sugar in them.

I'm going to start recording recipes here that have been tried and approved both to help out anyone interested and to make them easy to find for me later!  lol.  Also, if you're interested I've just started a pinterest board for sugar-free recipes that I haven't tried yet and also one that has been tried and approved (things will probably get posted there before here unless it's not a recipe I found on the net.)

This morning we had pancakes and strawberry sauce.  The kids all love it and Tim even likes it!  (If you're on THM the sauce is on-plan but you'll need to make the THM pancakes from the book to put it on.)

I have no idea where this pancake recipe originally came from.  It's one my mom always made when I was little that I've tweaked a bit to be more healthy.  

Whole Wheat Pancakes 

2 cups whole wheat flour (sometimes I grind my own and sometimes I use Wheat Montana Prarie Gold which I can buy at Walmart for only slightly more than regular white bleached all purpose flour.)
5 tsp baking powder
1tsp salt
a shake of pure stevia extract (or a packet of Truvia if you prefer) (the original recipe called for 3 tbsp of sugar)
2 eggs (we have free range farm fresh eggs thanks to my parents large flock of chickens!)
2 cups of milk
1/3 cup of melted butter

There are more complex directions in the original recipe but I've found that you can just melt the butter and then dump everything else in the same bowl and mix.  Cook on a hot, well greased griddle and enjoy!  

 Strawberry Sauce

I'm going to have to get better about measuring things but for now, this will have to suffice ;)  

1-2 cups of fresh or frozen strawberries (thaw them on the stove or in the microwave if using frozen)
sweetener of choice (again, I used just a shake of stevia extract)
thickener of choice (I used 1/2 tsp of xatham powder)
1/2 cup or more of liquid (I use juice if we have any on hand, otherwise I usually use almond milk, but I have even just used water)  

Mash the strawberries and then add everything to a pot or microwave safe bowl and heat stirring frequently.  Pour liberally over pancakes and enjoy!

Normally I would have made myself some THM pancakes but today I had too much else to do so I used the leftover Strawberry Sauce and tossed it in my blender along with some other goodies and had a shake!

Strawberry Shake 

Strawberry Sauce (or just strawberries and sweetener)
1/2 cup of cottage cheese (don't worry if you don't like cottage cheese, you can't taste it)
1 scoop of vanilla protein powder
liquid (if you need extra to get your blender to go)

Blend until smooth and then you can drink your breakfast while you work!  I'm still sipping mine as I type.  

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

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Easter Sewing

No, no I haven't finished (or even started!) my Easter sewing yet...but I have started to THINK about it!  That's how on my game I am!  lol

So, I haven't decided for sure what all I'm going to do but I thought I'd share the ideas I'm toying with and then keep updating as I actually get some of the sewing done.  I'd like to make at least one thing for all the kids and possibly a dress for myself as well.

I also am going to try to use patterns I already have and haven't sewn yet.'s what I'm thinking right now:

Boys - I'm thinking I'll do a Streamline Tee and The Canaan's Incredible Blazer with jeans for one boy (isn't that blazer just too cute?!?!  I love it!  I'm thinking maybe a thick sweatshirt fleece for it and then a fun contrasting hood lining.  Or maybe I'll make it without the hood and add a hood to my streamline... Hmm...decision, decisions!  Oh!  Or maybe I'll make a Henley to put under it instead of the raglan tee. Hmmm... Ok, clearly I still have some thinking to do on that one!) 

Then for the other boy maybe some Metropolitan Pants (probably upcycled from men's dress pants) and maybe a Prepster Pullover.   

I've had the Pullover pattern forever and still haven't made it. I love it so much though! 

Ok, onto the girls!  I think Kessa is probably going to get a Mainstree Tee and Dress.  I've made the tee version before for Grace but I really like the A-line shape and think it will make a good dress for Kessa now that she's over most of the super filly little girl type clothes. 

And...I haven't decided what to do for Grace or me yet.  I need to look through the patterns I have and haven't made and try to pick one. 

What are you buying/sewing for Easter? 

( ***photos are from pattern listings and are not mine ****  These are not affiliate links...I just love the patterns!)

Monday, March 10, 2014

Redeeming the Time

Now, I don't know about you, but I'm pretty sure that dirty dishes are part of the fall.  I don't quite have all my theological arguments in place yet but it's something I just feel in my gut, ya know?  If you don't have a working dishwasher I'm sure you know exactly what I'm talking about!  ;)

Part of the fall or not, they still have to be washed so I try my best to do it with a good attitude and to make a good use of that "down time."  Yesterday as I was washing more dishes I continued working on memorizing James (I've moved into chapter 2!)    No pretty artwork for chapter 2 yet...just being practical and continuing on!  

Once I'd filled my mind with all that it felt like it would remember for the day and still had more dishes to wash I started listening to another Driscoll sermon.  I was thrilled when I found out that he was starting a sermon series on James the same time we started studying it in my Bible study group!  

So what's your favorite way to "redeem the time" and make good use of your mindless tasks that still have to be done?

"Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, 
making the best use of time, 
because the days are evil."
Eph. 5:15-16

A different version says "redeeming the time" and I just love that!  Let's redeem that lost hour today!  ;)

Friday, March 7, 2014

Monkey Leggings

When Terra posted the call for testers for the Monkey Leggings I'll be honest, I hesitated.  I think they're SUPER cute on babies (and they do only go up to a size 5T) but I just wasn't sure about them for older kids.  Zane wear's a 3T but he's out of diapers and I'm not sold on them for boys if they're not in diapers still.  After I hesitated for a few seconds though I signed up anyway!  I mean...Terra's Treasures patterns are ALWAYS awesome and even if they weren't something I thought she'd be wearing out of the house they'd be great for some fun lounge wear or even for wearing under dresses! 

And that bum still my upcycle loving heart!!!  *swoon*

Now, if you've been around long at all you won't be surprised to see that when I gave Grace a choice she picked Toy Story for her bum panel.  I cut out the pattern and got to work.  Seriously a fast sew!  Like...15 minutes flat fast sew probably.  There is a tapered fit and a "straight" leg fit.  They're both more fitted like leggings though.  This pattern has three pieces and BAM!  Done. 

We grabbed Jessie and went out for some photos... and the more photos I took...

The more I changed my mind about this pattern on older girls!  I love it!!!  I think it's totally adorable and fun for playing.  No restricted movement here!

The pattern has both full length and capri cut lines as well.  

Grace and Jessie both approve and I see more of these in our future!

Thanks for another great pattern Terra!  

Oh, and if you don't sew but want your own pair...keep an eye on facebook tomorrow because I think I'll be listing some Ready to Ship ones! 

And one last one lest you think she really doesn't have any eyes... ;)

Thursday, March 6, 2014

My Style

Oh yes I did!  I'm so very fashion forward that I'm wearing Lil' Mismatched socks, plaid Chucks (these were a gift from my SIL YEARS ago).... And a BabyFish double ruffle maxi skirt.  That's right.  Try not to be jealous of my awesome sense of style!  

(In my defense the maxi really is a true maxi and you can't see my shoes when I'm not all kicked back!  ;)

And let's be honest... These maxis are so darn comfy you want to wear them all the time!  Kirsten says they're so amazing they're like wearing socially acceptable yoga pants!  

I don't have any good pictures of this particular double ruffle maxi (which is sad because it's my favorite) but how about a fun picture from last summer of my girls and I all wearing our regular, no ruffle, maxis? 

(and if you want your own maxi skirt feel free to drop me a line!)

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Handmade Everyday

As I was getting the kids all ready for rest time today I smiled noting some of their much loved and well worn mama-made clothing and it got me thinking.
We always post all these pretty polished pictures when we first make something...but what does our every-day look like?  I thought it might be fun to start posting some "keeping it real" everyday handmade kind of posts occasionally.
I snapped these pictures with my iPhone like 10 minutes ago so you'll pardon the quality but can I just say...welcome to our real life.  :)  

Zanebot getting ready to fall asleep with his MUCH loved kitty (that we affectionately call Pirate Kitty because he lost an eye long ago because he's so loved.)
Zane is wearing jeans from Crazy 8 and the Suburban Basics Tee from Terra's Treasures (inside out because he's 2 and wanted to do it himself.)  

Hi!!!  I'm next!  This is me in all my practically no makeup and hair in a bun SAHM glory.  ;)  The t-shirt I picked up at a yard sale, jeans from Maurices and the Swoon Patterns Scarf Neck Cardi (I LOVE this thing.  Like...a LOT.  I made the sleeves extra long and added thumb-holes too which makes me love it even  more.)  

Zeke is hanging out in his top bunk playing with his Transformers and he's sporting a Star Wars tee (picked up at a consignment shop...but maybe originally from Gap?) and some Metropolitan Pants (Terra's Treasures) that were upcycled from a pair of his dad's old jeans!  He wears this pants a LOT.  I'm not sure if it's the waistband (flat front, elastic back) or if the denim is just so worn they're more comfy but he loves them...and getting him in anything besides "swishy" pants or sweats is usually a battle so I consider this a huge win!  Oh, and up there in the upper left corner you can see part of his Pajama Eater that I made him for Christmas too.

Pickle is wearing a Toy Story shirt from Old Navy and some pants from Terra's Treasures that I can't show you yet because they're still in testing (but they're sooo cute!!!  Eep! )

And last but not least Miss Kessa has on some leggings made with the Jocole Ruffle Leggings Pattern.  She's also wearing a consignment store tulle skirt and Wonder Woman costume.  Earlier today she did have on a skirt from Funktional Threads...but every superhero needs a good petti skirt right?  lol!  (oh, and I just noticed, that amazing quilt she's laying on... made by my mom!

So, what do you think?  Should we make this a weekly thing and keep doing it?  What are you and your wearing today?  

Monday, March 3, 2014

Our Home has Grown by Four Feet

Well, four paws might be more accurate.

Meet Si.  Si is our new Beagle (mix?) and he's officially been with us for a week now.

He's still a pup at 6 months old (in fact I had to stop typing just now to wrestle a Styrofoam plate from his mouth.)

I know a lot of people thought we were out of our ever lovin' minds to get a dog (you have four kids, the youngest is only two, and you want a dog?!?!) so I thought it would be fun to share how it all went down.  

We saw a friend post share a post from the family looking for a new home for him and Tim and I both fell in love.  We joked about getting him for my birthday but then did nothing.  He was adorable, already fixed, housebroken and crate trained, he'd be snatched up in no time!  

Then we saw him again about 4 days later still there.  So we called about him.  Turns out his previous owners had bought Si's mom as a hunting dog not knowing she was pregnant.  She had a litter of 5 or 6 pups and all of them but Si died.  They bottle fed him around the clock from 2 days old.  He went everywhere with them.  The mom of the family was a vet tech so he even went to work with her every day.  Now they didn't want to give him up but felt like they were just too busy to give him the time and attention he needed as he got older.  They both worked, kids were in school and sports and life was just busy. 

He loves naptime with Zane!  

And he's currently playing out in the snow with Kessa and Zeke.  

He loves that we're home most of the time.  Yesterday when we went to church and then out for lunch was probably the longest we've left him and he let us know about it when we got home!  lol

He's adjusted to our crazy crew well and we're loving being Beagle owners again!