is definitely spontaneous! When you have jello and cool whip for desert, this is what you get:
Here's a picture from dinner last night. Steve didn't think he was going to like it, but he LOVED it. It's cheese stuffed jumbo shells. It made a ton. In fact, I had to put in two dishes. The whole cooking at home and not eating out as much has really been working good for us. We've only eaten out once in 1 1/2 weeks. Which is amazing for us - we are normally a 3-5 times per week family. I've been packing my lunch with all the good leftovers and only eating out once a week. (I would go crazy if I ate at my desk 5 days a week, sometimes I just have to get out of the office!) That alone will save us at least $50 per week, which is $2600 per year!!!
Some of you out there may not know this about me, but chicken on the bone pretty much grosses me out. I can handle poop & throw up all day long, but something about chicken meat and all the grissly grossness I can't handle. So, be very proud of me - I roasted a whole chicken on Saturday. Which isn't a big deal I do that quite a bit because it's pretty easy. But then last night, I took it out and cut all the meat off of the bone in order to use it in other things. I was gagging the whole time!
Look at how big Elaina is getting!! She is growing up too fast already! I told Steve we are going to just have to plan on having another one since she's growing so quickly! :) I don't think he liked that idea!
I call Elaina my "one eyed jack". She is constantly closing one of her eyes. Especially when she is trying to fight going to sleep. You will be holding her and you'll think she's asleep and all of a sudden she will open one eye and look around to see what's going on. Pray for me - I have 2 girls and 1 husband who all are afraid to go to sleep because they might miss something!
is my best friend! When we moved back into the house, we had to put basically everything back into closets and into our rooms. So I took the opportunity to purge and organize while I was at it. I mean, there's no reason to put something back into a closet or drawer if you are not going to use it again. So, last weekend was all about keep, sale, or trash. I think I've watched one too many episodes of Clean House. I even had a bin for each, but at least I didn't have flower in my hair like Nissy Nash! (Only true Clean House fans are going to know what I'm talking about) I haven't taken any pictures yet, but I'm planning on it. 8 hours later and 5 large trash bags full, the house is almost completely organized! There's actually room in Emily's toy box for more toys! I have started 2 new rules at the house: 1. if a new toy comes home, an old toy has to be given to charity 2. before you can get a toy out to play, you have to put the previous toy up. And I think for her birthday we are going to ask for donations to the church's children's ministry instead of toys. She has WAY too many toys!!! I said the house was almost completely organized because I still have a few things I want to do. Like my closet - you see, I still don't have my clothes back from the water damage, so I'm waiting to do it once I get those back. And my project for this weekend is my scrapbooking stuff. I want to take it out of my closet and put it in the Bonus Room since I have room in that closet now. And maybe if it is more organized and in a place I can get to it better, I will actually scrap more. I have even made a wish list room by room for the house of stuff that I would like to eventually buy to help life around the house. With a husband who works 60-70 hours a week, me working 40 hours a week, 3 dogs, 2 daughters, and a crazy social schedule, I'm trying to simplify our life. In fact, Steve and I both are on the simplify bandwagon. So, I'm starting to make a meal plan every two weeks, clipping coupons, and doing everything possible to simplify our life and our budget. In fact, I suggested to Steve we should get rid of his car, because honestly we don't need it. He rides to work with his dad pretty much every day. It might make things a little bit more difficult but in the long run I feel like it would be worth it. He didn't go for it, but I'm still working on him! With this new, simple lifestyle I need some accountability. Steve and I have always been a couple who would rather go out to eat every night and if we want something we just go buy it. But with the new mouth to feed and of course all the talk about the economy (Steve is in sales and my company is a staffing agency, so the economy could affect our jobs, hence our budget, drastically), we have to cut some of those luxuries out. That's where you come into the plan. I'm going to start using my blog as an accountability avenue. My plan is to start posting the different things we do to help us with our simple lifestyle that we are choosing. Whether it be a great deal that I found or a great meal that I've made. Don't worry, I'm not going to be going to extremes at this point. I don't think I can keep up with the CVS stuff like others have. I'm just trying to come up with little ideas that will help us out. I will also share different websites that I find useful for things like organization, menu ideas, and fun things to do with the kids. Like for instance, last night it was just Steve and I for dinner. I made an awesome recipe that I picked up at Publix. If you have a Publix around you, I'm totally jealous! They have this great section near the produce. You can pick up a recipe card and they have all the ingredients right there, so you don't have to look around the entire store for them. And they normally have someone cooking the food, so you can sample it. So last night, I made Sicilian Steak and Strawberry Poppyseed Salad. It was incredible! And it cost roughly $15 for the whole thing, which makes the meal roughly $5 per person (we had enough left over for another person). I didn't take a picture of the steak because it wasn't very pretty, but this is the salad:
It was delicious! In fact Steve said it was the best thing I've made in a long time.
I'm sorry this has been such a long post. I wasn not planning it to be this long. Next week, be looking for before and after pictures of all the scrapbook stuff and more pictures of the yummy food I'm going to cook!
By the way, the simple life plan is working. Our family has sat down to eat dinner together at the table 2 nights in a row. Which never happens because of our crazy schedule. Normally, it is just Emily and I.
So, when Elaina was born Steve wanted to come up with a nickname for her. You see, he calls Emily "The Beast" because he says she's sweet until you start wrestling with her and she becomes a beast. The only name he could come up with was "The Prodigy". I didn't know if I liked it at first, but then last night we had Elaina on a blanket having some floor time while I cooked dinner, when I looked over at her this is what I saw:
If you can't tell what I'm talking about here's a closer look:
Yes, that is my 5 week old holding onto her pacifier. When I went into the kitchen it was laying besider her and when I came back she was holding it. Who knew a 5 week old could do that? :) (Yes, I know she didn't intentionally pick it up, but I thought it was cute anyways!)
So, everybody keeps asking me how Emily is doing with Elaina and not being the only child anymore. I think the picture above says it all! I didn't even have to ask her to do it! She absolutely loves being a big Sissy!!! (I used to call Candy Sissy and she hated it, but now she loves it!) Emily loves holding Elaina and helping me out whether it be feeding her or helping with the daiper change. I'm sure once Elaina starts getting mobile it will be a little different. While I was pregnant, I really tried to get Emily excited about all the things her and Elaina can do when they get older and how they will be the best of friends. And really think that helped. Emily did get a kick out of me telling her that her and Elaina will be able to share secrets about boys! She thought that was hilarious! I had, and still have, such a sweet bond with my sister. I hope Emily and Elaina have the same!
Posted by The Barrios Family at 8:53 AM
This was the first time my aunt, Bonnie Jo, and her daughter, Tara, had met Elaina. So, needless to say Elaina was spoiled by the time the weekend was over. Not only did she not want to be put down, but she came home with a whole new wardrobe! Bonnie Jo has always been so great to Candy and I. And she has continued with our children! She brought Elaina a hand sewn quilt from the rodeo in San Antonio. It is GORGEOUS!!! It is the one Elaina is laying on in the picture in my last post. I'll have more pictures shortly.
The next day, we did lots of shopping and hanging out. That's really all we do when Bonnie Jo comes to town - shop & eat. But, man, we found some deals! Bonnie Jo brings out the bargain shopper in me. Then we had a fun dinner. We all made our own personal pizzas and for dessert we had chocolate fondue. It was so much fun and Emily had a blast! I don't think she stopped talking until about midnight that night thanks to all the sugar and caffine!
At one point she even had it in her eye brows! And isn't it appropriate that she has her shirt on that reads "i want candy"!!!
I think Elaina was a little jealous that Emily was able to eat all that chocolate - this is the face she was making all night.
Because we have an awesome contract, we are back in the house! Jason & Martin really worked their rear end's off so that we could get back in without too much of a hassle! We were actually only out of our house 3 weeks total. God has definitely blessed us with wonderful friends who work hard to take care of us and a wonderful family that takes us in when we have no where else to go. Thank you so much for all you did for us! I haven't had a chance to takes any pictures yet. I've been busy cleaning out and organizing. I figure since I have to put it all away, I might as well get rid of some of it that we haven't used in a while. I basically went through every closet, every drawer, every spot that I could find anything and either threw it away, put it back up neatly or put it in the newly organized closet for the garage sale. The only room I haven't done is our bedroom and closets. Since I don't have much hanging in my closet still, I figure I can wait on it. And I was wanting to get the Bonus Room closet cleaned out so I could organize all my scrapbook stuff and start storing it so I can actually get to it and use it. Hope everyone is having a great Monday! We've had some fun times in the midst of all of the chaos of the "flood of 2009", so I will posting those pictures soon! I just wanted to stop by and let you know we are back in the house! YAY!
This is from our bedroom looking into the living room.
This is the ceiling in the downstairs hallway.
This is the top of our stairs. And the hallway upstairs.
This is the bathroom where it all started.And this is the Bonus Room. There was even more damage in the garage, but I didn't get pictures of it for some reason.