Saturday, November 29, 2014

Meet Ginger!

Last week, we had a new friend join us for the Christmas season: Ginger, the Elf on the Shelf! Salean has a cousin who has had an elf named Ralph visit the last couple of years, and Ralph comes out the day after the local Santa Clause Parade, so we decided to do the same to avoid confusion with the kids. The parade was last Saturday night, and so Ginger made her debut Sunday morning.

I gave Salean the accompanying book Saturday afternoon,we read through it and she spent the day looking at the pictures. I tried to reiterate that we do not touch elf! Since she is to young to understand the naming process, we decided to call her Ginger in case little sister gets her own elf someday, we can give it a matching spice name. Here are Ginger's antics during our first week!

Sunday morning, Ginger was sitting primly on top of a box of tissues on my messy shelf. We read through the book again and I asked Salean to find the elf. She pointed out Ginger surprisingly quickly! She reached out, but I reminded her of the story and "Santa said no touching". She went on with her day, pointing out Ginger every hour or so. 

Monday morning, Ginger was perched on the blinds. We keep the pull cords up because Little Miss likes to play with them, it made a perfect swing for Ginger! Salean spotted her quite quickly this morning without being asked.

Tuesday morning, Ginger was caught dancing with Bear! I prompted Salean to find elf and she pointed them out. She loves Bear, but we usually keep him up, so another reminder that we could not touch elf made her content. 

Wednesday morning, Ginger was hanging out on Daddy's snake skin sword, which is on top of our television. Salean needed prompting to find elf again, but pointed her out several times during the day. 

Thursday morning, Ginger decided to do an impromptu pole dance on the blinds! Salean kept pointing her out all day, she loved this spot because it was out in the open. 

Friday, Ginger was caught in the blender!! I prompted Salean to find elf, and she did easily, but ignored it the rest of the day. The blender is off to the side on the shelf, so she couldn't see it great from her play area. 

Finally Saturday, this morning, Ginger and her Minions are making an escape! This is an unused hook that hangs in a window between my kitchen and living room, I used clear elastics to tie their hands together. As soon as Salean entered the room she saw them and started pointing and dancing! So far, this has been the most exciting adventure for Ginger and Salean.

So that is week one done. I have something special planned starting the first of December, but I will keep updating Ginger's adventures!

Have a great weekend! 


Cheeseburger Casserole

After meal planning for almost 3 months I am finding it harder and harder to find meals that my picky little family will eat, without repeating the same thing over and over. Up until my computer crashed, I kept a file with what we had each week, so I would know how long it has been since we have had shepherd's pie, sloppy joes, etc. We still go out twice a week, once with his family usually for fast food and once for burger night at his Mom's, and so I only have to plan for five nights. I try to get one new meal in a week and pasta only once a week, but it is getting tiresome alternating hamburger and chicken, with only the occasional pork meal or a treat of pizza or bacon sandwiches.

One meal last week was three things: new, pasta and hamburger. I found this Cheeseburger Casserole dish on Pintrest and decided it looked good enough to make, with a couple of picky eaters changes, of course.

I skipped the onions, Mr Picky won't touch anything that has onions in it, and I used garlic powder instead of the real thing (because that was all I had).

My can of tomatoes was Italian, so instead of the steak spice I used a sprinkle of Italian spice to match. I also gave the tomatoes a little run through the food processor for a few seconds, as none of us are wild about chunks of tomato.

This is the yummy concoction before adding the cheese. I was a bit worried that there wasn't enough pasta, but once it got mixed in it turned out fine.

A little toddler portion. Little Miss loved it and ate almost all of this, including the hamburger which she normally picks out! Mr. Picky took one bite and rejected it. He said it tasted funny. I think it was the Dijon, the last time I made a dish with it he wouldn't eat it, either.

I managed to get a serving for myself and Little Miss, two for the freezer (for after baby) and I took one to Mr Picky's Mom, who also loved it!

Other than it being a little vinegary (from he ketchup and mustard) I loved it. This dish whipped up quite quickly and easily while I made a batch of rolls to go with it. I think it will go onto the make again file, or at least on an evening that Mr isn't home!

Have a good day, everyone!!


Friday, November 28, 2014


I can't believe it has been almost two months...and I really can't believe that Monday is December!! It has been a long two months, I have been having computer problems that (hopefully) are behind me now. We have had our first good snowstorm, and a couple of smaller flurries. I have tried many new recipes, taken quite a few pictures, and have lots to share!

I will hopefully have a few posts over the next few days and then start posting regularly again, or at least until baby arrives, she's due in 18 days!! Everything is ready for baby sister, we are just waiting for her arrival!

See you soon!