20 weeks and a Lesson in Being a Mom #1

My baby is 20 weeks old.  I think.  It can’t really be 20 can it?
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On a scale of 1-10 how mean was it to put that ridiculous hat on her? But she looks so cute. In a “Little House on the Prairie” kind of way.

Okay, okay. Maybe some normal shots are in order.

I pulled her hair back. Also not a good look on a baby whose hair is thinning and being slowly replaced by more. But it doesn’t matter, she is still the most beautiful baby in the universe. Really, she is.

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She plays with toys now.

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[those eyes]

Oh, and she smiles and smiles and smiles.

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But now on important things like lessons. Lessons on being a mom. We’ll start with lesson #1: making dinner and staying happy while doing it.

Being a mom is hard. Really hard. Sometimes, I just wanna throw back a few shots of Jager and relax. Okay, maybe not a few. Maybe just one. But then I come to my senses and realize that I love being a mom, even if it is really hard. And then I think of ways I can make the job easier and less stressful.

Dinner.

First and foremost, let me just state that I am weird. Like everyone, I have little things that bother me and drive me nuts and one of them is a messy/dirty house.  I hear, “Oh, the laundry can wait” or “A messy house is a sign that your kids are having fun and making memories,” blah blah blah.  Not for me.  For me, it’s a sign that Mama has spent too much time facebooking or pinning.  Pinning on Pinterest.  Anyway, I don’t like a messy house and I get anxious and stressed when my floor is covered in stuff.  So my number one rule when I am getting ready to make dinner is to make sure the house is clean. And if it’s not clean at least make sure it’s picked up and vacuumed.   It takes me maybe 10 minutes to get it picked up, because I do it so often, so it’s not taking a lot of time out of my evening.  And guess what…my kids are still having fun and making memories…in the messy basement. Ha! To me, there is nothing worse than getting done with dinner, cleaning dishes and then having your house be a wreck.

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Babies playing on the clean floor is an extra perk.

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So with a clean house, I get started. I occasionally like to go all out with dinner — make something really special and extra yummy, but most of the time I need something yummy but quick because Maria has violin, Danny has meetings, I have kids to feed and change, etc. So last night I made meat/onion/cheese/hashbrown filled mini pies. Mmmm.

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[everything tastes a bit better with Lawry’s…seriously]

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And because I’m all about the cute-factor, I used a scalloped edge cookie cutter.

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[stack of cute things are the best, even if it’s just pie crusts]

And then I made the pies. They ended up looking like ravioli, which was perfect. They baked for 15 minutes in a 350 degree oven.

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I spooned some mushroom sauce over them and they were really good.

And then I made dessert pies. Mini.

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I didn’t have mini mallows so I had to tear apart huge ones.

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Those are adorable. They were delicious, too. I also made ones filled with jam.

Here’s a tip: It’s okay to have Dora the Explorer on tv while you get dinner ready. TV is not the devil. And hearing your 2 year old yell “Dowa! DOWA!” might be the cutest thing ever.

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I also work kinda like an assembly line. I get everything lined up in the order they’re needed. Plates first.

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It makes things feel organized and clean. It works for me.

And then the TV gets shut off and it’s time to eat.

cooking-27Maria is fashion.

cooking-28I’m not sure how she does it, but her face gets this dirty every.  single.  day.

 

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We have a rule at our house. You don’t get to choose what goes on your plate, but you do get to choose what you eat. If you don’t want to eat something, that’s okay, but I don’t want to hear about it. And you cannot take it off your plate.

I took a “Feeding Young Children” class last year, and learned that foods should be presented to children often, ones that they don’t think they like. Eventually, they will try them. You also shouldn’t force kids to eat. Not a healthy habit.  I’m not an expert on how to feed kids by any stretch of the imagination, but I do know what works for us.

So my kids usually decide they aren’t going to eat all their meal which is fine (Jamie just recently told me that he never likes to try anything new, especially vegetables)…but no seconds on the unhealthy stuff until they’ve eaten the rest. That’s fair, right?

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