Saturday, May 12, 2012

Nesting has set in!

Well, it finally happened! At 34 weeks pregnant, I could not take it anymore and just had to decorate or improve something! I had chosen not to find out whether we were having a boy or girl at our ultrasound because I wanted to be able to relax and enjoy this pregnancy rather than spending the entire time wrapped up in preparations like I was with my first two pregnancies. Last week, I reached a breaking point where I just had to do something and while my husband was out of town, I decided to finally paint my daughter's bedroom. Although we bought paint when we moved into our home over 2 years ago I never got around to painting. Here is how the room has looked pretty much since moving in:

I had chosen a light purple color from my daughter's rug and bedding. I painted one wall and immediately knew that it was not the right color. The color was too light and actually looked almost white. With white furniture and ceilings, the room was not gaining any personality. I planned to let the paint dry and add another coat to see if I could make the color work. So I packed the kids into the car and went to pick up some supplies. While shopping, I decided to check the mistint section and found a lovely shade of lavender. I immediately grabbed it up and put it into the cart. We got the rest of our supplies and I rushed home to get a coat onto the wall. With the first brush strokes, I was in love! I got one coat on about half of the room before it was time for bed, so I cleaned up for the night and tucked the kids in. The next day I added a second coat to get even coverage on the textured walls. I was stiff and sore from all of the bending and crouching, so I took the next day off. Over the weekend, I finished the other half of the room, despite my daughter's protests that I leave the room half painted! My little princess absolutely loved her room! She loved it so much that I could not get any shots of her new room without her dancing through the middle of the photo!
The change in the wall color made a huge difference in personalizing the space, but I have a few more ideas that I hope to work on over the summer and after the new baby is born! Though I love how the room turned out, I am ready to rest these last four weeks!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The time I almost killed my husband

You will not find a lot of recipes on this blog because I am not much of a cook (as this story will illustrate), but I felt that this tip that I learned from my mother-in-law needed to be shared! Soon after I met my know husband (almost 11 years ago) I invited him over to my house for dinner. I planned to make spagetti because I figured that everybody likes spagetti and there is really no way to mess it up. I could not have been more wrong! So the day of the big dinner arrived and I went shopping for the ingredients and spent the afternoon preparing our meal. When my boyfriend arrived he commented on how delicious everything smelled and we sat down to eat. He was a football player, so of course he was a big eater and he gobbled up 2 servings of spagetti. After cleaning up we went to relax and watch a movie in the living room. Soon after the movie started he excused himself to go to the restroom and spent the rest of our romantic evening in the bathroom! Later when discussing the source of his abdominal discomfort, I revealed that I had fried the burger in a frying pan just like my mom had done for my entire life. At that time, my boyfriend revealed to me that his mom boiled their hamburger rather than frying it. We knew then that the difference in cooking methods had meant more grease than my boyfriends stomach could handle. I was immediately intrigued by the concept of boiling hamburger and had to ask his mom about her method. It really is just as simple as it sounds, boiling hamburger in a pot of water just as you would do with noodles. I buy the leanest ground beef that I can, usually 93/7, and break it up in a pot of water. I then bring the water to a boil, stirring occassionally until the hamburger has completely browned.
Finally, I dump the pot into a strainer and strain away all of the water and grease.
This method of boiling hamburger creates small pieces of meat that are perfect for spagetti as well as tacos. And not only does this method produce a less greasy and healthier hamburger, it also keeps the house from smelling greasy.
Most peoples reaction when I tell them about boiling hamburger is similiar to mine (disbelief), but since trying it 11 years ago, I have never fried hamburger again! Though I continue to do most of the cooking for my family, I have also adopted several of my mother-in-laws recipes, and thankfully have never again made someone ill with my cooking!