Monday, May 7, 2012

the monthly: 11 months old!

hey little elegator!

The day you turned 10 months old you finally found an interest in crawling. You started getting up on your hands and knees more, and rocking back and forth. You never actually crawled too much, scooting was faster for you. You also started pulling yourself up onto things. You've been hiding your strength this whole time ;) You pulled yourself up to a standing position in your crib and freaked me out! I saw you on the baby monitor, and during your "nap" you were happily standing, looking out in to your room. Now that you've found a new trick, you like to practice it every chance you get. Most nap times I can be sure to find you hanging on to the crib railing.

You still like to bounce your head back and forth, mainly with music. You've also started singing/humming from time to time, in the bath and when you're eating, and it's the cutest thing. We think you're going to be musically inclined...who knows ;) you didn't get it from your mama (or papa). You like to clap too!

By mid-month you were crawling around quite a bit, and even found the stairs! You scaled the stairs in no time at all, and without help of mama (although, I did stay right behind as the safety net ;). You managed to make it up the stairs twice in one day...what a great workout! We purchased our baby gates that same day. Now we'll teach you how to climb down safely and then we'll be good to go!

You love your sleep, little snoozer ;) Most nights you're out for 12-13 hours! and you have a nap or two during the day. So, you're still sleeping more hours than you're awake...but that's okay, you're a growing little lady!

It's the cutest thing to see you meet an older person and give them a proper handshake. You just smile and laugh. You also like to wave and sometimes mix that with your signing "all done"...when you're finished with a meal, we've been trying to teach you the sign for "all done". We're not sure if you actually know what it means, or if you just like to shake your hands and wave :)

You also really like your books (as seen in the photo). That book, The Grown Up Day, was one of your grandma's books when she was a little girl. You can't read yet, but you sure do like to sort through your books and occasionally give them a little love bite.

"Mama" and "Dada" or "Papa" come out of your mouth on a more regular basis now...but we're still not sure if you actually know what those words mean, or if you just like making noise! :) You are a little talker and you like to sing and hum too.

We are retiring the outfit that you are wearing in this photo. You got a good 5+ months out of it, but now it's a tad too small (Size 6 months). Your big cloth diaper booty makes these shorts a little small...ahh! :) But the outfit was just too cute to stop wearing. Please forgive me ;)

You are one month away from being one year old! And teeth. That's okay :) I like your gummy smile and curly locks of hair :) You're a keeper. Your birthday party plans are in the mind is full of ideas...but I just don't want to get too caught up in it (or stressed) :) We know that you will have a fun time (as long as you catch a snooze beforehand) ;) You are LOVED!

lots of love,

ps. here are some photos from this past month:
 Bath time in the kitchen sink at Great Grandpa Bockman's house
 Your 1st Easter
 Pool day with Ezra-you refused to get out!
At Piatti's in La Jolla, celebrating Mama's birthday (early)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

1 Roasted Chicken, 3 Tasty Meals

A few friends and I were talking about good recipes and we happened to discuss cooking whole chickens. I'd never really given it much thought before. I liked buying rotisserie chickens from Costco ($6) and using the meat for enchiladas or chicken tortilla soup. I'd never really thought of roasting my own chicken and making not one, but THREE meals from it. I think that's pretty resourceful, if I do say so myself :) I thought I'd pass along a great recipe, that I've tried and loved, so that you can ENJOY too!

I am LOVING this new recipe, from the blog 100 Days of Real Food,  found on pinterest. How to cook a whole a crock pot. It was amazing! The recipe was easy to follow, simple, and delicious! There weren't any complications or delay in times and the end result...tender chicken full of flavor that just falls off the bone.

Here's how it worked out for us:
I searched pinterest and found a recipe for the crock pot (think: quick, easy, and NO oven heating up the house). I purchased a whole chicken (approx. 5  1/2 lbs.) from Henry's Sprout's for $1.49/lb (great deal!). We already had all of the spices on hand (also purchased in bulk, from Sprout's). Got home, mixed the spices, pulled the whole chicken out of the bag (yuck-definitely the worst part of the whole deal, in my opinion), and rubbed the chicken with the spices. Placed it in the crock pot and put the lid on. I forgot to buy an extra onion to chop and place under the chicken...oh well! The timer was set for 4 hours and I checked the meat 3 1/2 hours was fully cooked and so tasty! There were no added oils or fats, just chicken and spices.

Meal #1: Chicken, wild rice and steamed zucchini

Meal #2: Homemade Chicken Tortilla Soup
The next day I pulled the remaining chicken from the bone and added it to a homemade (chicken) tortilla soup from the Pioneer Woman...I love her recipes! Mmmm! We made some fresh tortilla chips, by slicing tortillas and baking in the oven at 400 degrees for about 7 minutes. Yum! I told Ryan that I'll probably make our own chips from now on...they were so good (and simple)! And another bonus?...We have a HUGE pot of soup leftover for lunches and dinner tonight.

Meal #3: Homemade Chicken stock for soup/meals
The chicken carcass (eww) was used with this recipe (also from 100 Days of Real Food blog) to make chicken broth for another large soup or additional meals. I followed the simple recipe and let it sit overnight in the crock pot. Our house smells like chicken broth this morning, but I now have the base for another complete meal (saving us approx. $4...$2/box of chicken broth). Woohoo!

For $8 we were able to make 2 solid meals, plus leftovers, and broth for another meal! I am definitely doing this again (maybe even this week...too soon? haha!). I hope you'll try it out! Stay tuned...I'm working on more blog posts like these, with recipes worth sharing :)

with love,