Baby Names

Reid and I are that pregnant couple that most everyone is secretly annoyed with because we don’t find out what we are having or tell names. It’s ok to be annoyed, we forgive you.  However, our reason for not telling names is mainly because we most likely won’t decide until after the baby is born, just like with Lula.  Reid and I are both very indecisive and extremely picky when it comes to names, which makes things difficult especially because once one of us finds a name we actually like, we have to agree on it, which never happens.  Anyway,  I have this stupid little personal rule that I won’t even consider a name if it’s in the top 100 most popular names.  So, I found this link for the predicted top 100 names of 2010 and I was absolutely shocked!! I mean, who knows how accurate this list is, but names that we have considered and thought were sooo unique are very high up on this list…such as Willa, Violet, Iris, Felix and August?? I never knew they would be so popular! (and no, we are not going to use any of those names for our baby…those are just examples…nice try.)

Here is the list for girls names and the one for boys names if you are curious.

Needless to say, I may need to retract my dumb little rule and just pick a name I love regardless if there will be 5 other kids with that name in Kindergarten…I know how that is from experience. :) However, our favorite boy name right now (yes, we have agreed on one!!) is NOT on the boy list, and my personal favorite girl name is not on the girl list (I don’t think Reid is convinced on it yet). But, most likely we will change our minds end up with something totally different by the time the baby comes. Any name suggestions that go well with Lula?

The Color Yellow

I’m loving yellow these days.  My friend, Vanessa bought Lula this adorable yellow dress at a garage sale, so I had to get some spring pictures. She doesn’t really look at the camera anymore, she just runs away from me. So, these aren’t the greatest!
I also decided that the living room needed some yellow accents, so I found some candlesticks that I don’t really use…actually they were in our wedding. And I got some yellow spray paint on sale for 97 cents and made some “new” accents for our mantle!
Here they are on the mantle:
I also used the spray paint to make some fun pillows. I will share how I did those later!

Thai Basil Turkey Stir Fry

My friend, Bryanna, made this delicious dish for us one night and I had to get the recipe. It’s so easy, delicious and healthy.  I thought I would share it with everyone! I did make some of my own changes to the original recipe, so here is my version:
Thai Basil Turkey Stir Fry
8 oz. fresh or frozen green beans (or, we made it with sugar snap peas this time and it was great!)
2 cloves garlic, minced
5 green onions, diced
1 lb. ground turkey
2/3 c. chicken broth
2 Tbs brown sugar
2-3 Tbs soy sauce
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp. crushed red pepper (optional)
4 cups brown rice
Cook turkey like hamburger meat. Add garlic and green onions, saute.  In bowl – mix broth, sugar, soy sauce, pepper, crushed red pepper and basil.  Pour over turkey.  Add frozen green beans or sugar snap peas (if using fresh, add lightly cooked beans at this point).  Stir/simmer until liquid evaporates partially. Serve over cooked rice.

Everyone loves it, even Lula.  It’s fairly spicy with the crushed red pepper, which Lula loves. She can handle spicy stuff that is too much for me sometimes. But, if you have a normal child that doesn’t like spicy food, you might want to omit the red pepper.


Painted Chandelier

It’s been almost a year since we moved into our house. I can’t believe it! There were many projects to be done when we moved in, and this chandelier was one of them.  Everything in the house was original from the 1970’s. Curtains, wallpaper, carpet…everything.  This chandelier was in the dining room and was ugly gold with giant crystals hanging from it. Instead of spending hundreds of dollars on a new light fixture, I simply took it down, took off all the crystals and spray painted it a glossy teal color. I absolutely love how it turned out!! A new chandelier for about $3 isn’t bad.  We have orange and teal accents in the room, so it’s perfect.

I am now on the hunt for another ugly chandelier that needs a new home. I’ve been searching craigslist and garage sales. Hopefully I will find one soon because I think Lula’s new room will need a  spray painted chandelier much like this one  from Pottery Barn Kids:

Freezer Cooking Day Results

Lately I’ve been trying to cut down our grocery bill by combining coupons with store sales and stocking up on things when they are really cheap or free! I found some great deals on very cheap chicken breasts (bone-in, which I had never bought, but I figured it out), ground beef and FREE sausage! I also got inspired by this blog entry and decided to try a mini freezer cooking day.  Next time, I will try doing a full month’s worth of meals, but I wasn’t very well stocked and just wanted to see how it went before I try that commitment. I’m also hoping to get into the habit of doing this monthly to save on grocery bills and once the new baby arrives, I will be organized!
This is what I ended up with after cooking during Lula’s nap. It really didn’t take that long!
Homemade marinara sauce–(enough to use with spaghetti as well as pizza sauce for multiple meals)
Meatballs–(enough for 3 meals to go on spaghetti or sandwiches)
3 1/2 Lbs of shredded chicken to use on tacos and enchiladas. This will last for 3 meals. I will put the recipe below.
Homemade wheat thins (see yesterday’s post for recipe)
Pizza dough–enough to make 2 pizzas. Yes, you can freeze homemade dough!
AND, I tried to make my homemade yogurt, but I was multi-tasking too much and it got too hot and curdled. Yuck. 
Here is how I made the shredded chicken.  Like I said earlier, I found really cheap chicken breasts, but they weren’t boneless. I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it. So, what I did was so easy and I think it will be delicious! I put the chicken breasts completely frozen in the crockpot along with one diced onion.  Then, I threw on some cumin, chili powder and maybe a cup of salsa–I didn’t really measure. I then turned the crockpot on low and let it cook for about 8 hours. When it was done, the meat had completely fallen off the bones, so I just fished them out and shredded the meat with a fork. I divided it into 3 containers and now it’s ready to go for tacos, enchiliadas, quesadillas or maybe even sandwiches! So easy!
Anyone else tried freezer cooking? I’d love to know what recipes work well!

Homemade Wheat Thins

I attempted a freezer cooking day today for the first time. Here is a preview of one of the things that I made! Although, this isn’t technically something you cook and then put in your freezer for later, it still was part of my cooking adventures! I found a recipe for homemade wheat thins and decided to try it out. Lula loves them and it was super easy and cheap…not to mention a lot healthier than real wheat thins.  You can get the recipe and instructions here.  I will share the end results of my freezer cooking day later!

Another Headband

Here is a picture of the headband I made to go with Lula’s easter dress.
Like the other ones on my previous post,  I modified a Heather Bailey pattern and added felt circles for embellishement.
The most impressive thing about this headband is that Lula kept it on her head almost the entire day! I will now have to make tons more for her to wear this summer!

Great Giveaway!

If you enjoy fabric as much as me, you should head over to my mom’s new blog and sign up for her giveaway this week! It’s a creative way to use up some of those awesome Liberty of London fabrics that Target is now has in some of their clothing merchandise.