Saturday started out with the best of mommy intentions… my husband has been working insane hours lately at work, so I encouraged him to go golfing. My son kept asking about blueberry pies, so I decided that I would take the kiddos blueberry picking and we would come home and make a blueberry pie to enjoy after dinner that night. I thought it was a pretty good plan for a low-key Saturday.
Being that I was trying to summon my inner Martha, I also decided to make the Martha Stewart Oven Roasted Ribs (I know I have Southern Readers…please don’t cringe at me putting ribs in the oven). For anyone not cringing at the cooking method – I highly recommend this recipe – absolutely delicious.
Maybe I should have known the day was going to be full of comedy (we’ll call it that to be nice)…my daughter decided to treat the blueberry fields like the best hide and go seek play space as possible and I was darting between bushes to get her. My son ate so many blueberries (including the green ones), that he got sick as we were leaving the fields, AND I had to go to stop at the grocery store on the way home to get more blueberries because the eating of the berries and lack of picking meant we didn’t have enough for the pie! I thought we had regrouped nicely though after I showered and got all child vomit off, we pulled together our blueberry pie, and both kiddos took LONG naps (I lovesummer naps – pure exhaustion takes over them!).
I pulled together my ribs - and read the directions. The first step clearly reads: Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with foil, and place a wire rack on top of each. I decided instead to use unrimmed sheets (why? I have no idea, the other ones were right there)…but I set up my sheets, set up the ribs, and settled everything into the oven, into the upper and lower thirds, just as Martha said. And…I put my blueberry pie right in the middle.
I took out the blueberry pie…which happened to get dripped on by the ribs, so was now a Blueberry BARBEQUE pie…
My son has now sworn off pie, because he thinks they all taste yucky…this mom on the other hand, picked the berries, baked with the berries, and was sure as heck going to eat that blueberry pie. No matter how interesting it tasted
I received a lot of great feedback when I shared my son’s dinosaur birthday details, I thought you might like to see another one of our recent parties. Minnie Mouse First Birthday was our theme of choice for my daughter’s first birthday because, well, that’s what her big brother decided. We have since been lucky because at 15 months, she is obsessed with Minnie, but when I was planning when she was around 10 months old, she didn’t really have a preference. For parties, I like easy, but creative. Being that I am not creative myself, I love to leverage Etsy. I also love to come up with ideas at the last-minute, which is why I do a lot of shopping on Amazon (love that Prime membership!). This party was pretty much a mix of Etsy and Amazon.
We started off with this invitation from A Kiss of This from Etsy. I asked the shop owner to change the wording to say “Put on your ears and say cheers as we celebrate C’s first birthday”. And for the place…We said “C’s Clubhouse”. Yes…I am a Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Nerd!
Next up, of course, was the birthday outfit, including (obviously), an over the top birthday hat:
The Etsy’ Shop has since closed was GlitzGlam Boutique…I am sure you could find another one if you desired!
Mickey’s Chicken Nuggets (courtesy of Costco – did you know they made Mickey Mouse Shaped Nuggets???)
Goofy’s Grilled Veggies
Daisy’s Berry-licious Fruit Salad (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, grapes)
MINNIE Birthday Cake! For the cake, I kept debating about what to do. I wound up going with a basic white cake, with black and red polka dots.
For the foods, I labeled them and put stickers on from those stickers you always get in the mail with the Disney Movies…
Our games were pretty limited. It was a beautiful day outside, so there was a lot of playing outside, enjoying the jungle gym and bounce house.
First up was a game of “Pin the Bow” on Minnie Mouse.My son is obsessed with the “pin the…” games. He thinks every party should have one…It is usually a hit, so I go with it!
I cut the Minnie Mouse head out of black sparkly paper and the bows from Red and White polka dot paper (both from Michaels). The one snafoo was that regular scotch tape did not adhere to the black sparkly paper. Whoops. Lesson learned for the future! I don’t have a picture of this, but seriously – super easy to create. 1 big black circle, 2 little ones, and bows cut out using a bow template found online.
We then had a Freeze Dance Contest to the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse CD.
This was the cutest…the kids loved it, and the parents loved watching them dance. Even when a child was “out” they were still dancing away. When they were “out” they received a bag with their name on it for…
The Pinata (Also from Amazon)!
I LOVE pull string pinatas, and this Minnie one did not disappoint!
Party decorations were everything Red, White and Black – tablecloths, flowers, napkins, etc! I did make these adorable Minnie/Mickey heads (Inspired from Heavenly Blooms). Love them!!! I spraypainted the gardening styrofoam balls, and attached them to each other with toothpicks.
Finally, our goodie bag item was a book for each child, ordered from Amazon.
Here are some other ideas that I wish I included for the party, but did not…honestly, I can’t take how adorable these all are!
I am very excited to share a new sponsor on Mastering Mommy Brain. I have known Eva over at My Sleeping Beauty for over 10 years.
The “over 10 year” thing is kind of scary to me because we met Freshman year of college, so now I am feeling old. In preparation of my birthday coming up next month, I have started reviewing with my son that mommy is always 29, and that is what he tells everyone, so I am feeling a bit better.
Back to My Sleeping Beauty….
Eva launched her business last year, and since she launched, my house has been filling up with some fantastic products, including these silhouettes of my munchkins:
This etched drink dispenser and numbered cups (a gift from a dear friend!)
And a close-up of the classes that go with it (I have 8)…
and my Spring wreath (after searching ALL over, she did exactly what I wanted with the Forsythia wreath!):
My absolute favorite product line that she has is her Christmas items. Honestly – they are so sweet and unique. Last year, I bought this Christmas Present. When I opened it and plugged it in, my son started dancing around our kitchen singing Christmas songs – and it was October. I loved it!!!!! To celebrate Eva’s return from maternity leave and her sponsorship of MMB, we are having a “Christmas in July” celebration – you can win your own present box!
To enter the contest, please use the “Rafflecopter” entry below. To get chances to win – you can comment on this page, and let us know what your favorite Christmas tradition is…recipes, activity, anything! To gain more entries, you can “like” the Mastering Mommy Brain or My Sleeping Beauty Facebook pages, or share us on your pages with your friends.
The winner will be announced on My Sleeping Beauty’s one year anniversary – July 21st!
For those of you who don’t win, don’t get too upset – Eva is offering a major coupon to all Mastering Mommy Brain readers. Her Etsy shop is 50% off - Seriously – 50%! Just use the code mmbandmsb50 and start shopping!!!! =)
If that doesn’t say Merry Christmas (in July)…I don’t know what does!!
The other week, we had my husband’s teenage cousin for a visit. We had an awesome time with her, and I think the biggest joy for me was not having to coax someone to eat. I am no longer scared of having teenagers if it means all the food I put on a plate gets eaten, and I don’t have to sing a song or make up stories about the food.
This one she had second helpings of, and requested the leftovers for lunch the next day. She requested that this was an MMB recipe post soon (her other favorite will be posted next week!), and I felt like I had to oblige. She plans to bribe her little sister to make this one for her soon. I know that sibling story well…remember last week’s banana bread?!
Before jumping into this recipe…I have to say this one is not a pretty one, but it is delicious.
1 lb. ziti macaroni
2 lbs. Ricotta cheese
1 lb. Mozzarella cheese
2 eggs (well beaten)
1/2 c. Parmesan cheese
1 tbsp. parsley
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
2 lg. jars tomato gravy (homemade tomato sauce can be used, I prefer a chunkier sauce)
1 lb. sweet sausage
1 lb. ground beef
1. Cook macaroni al dente with tablespoon salt. Drain, run cold water over and set aside.
2. Cook ground beef until brown, drain. At the same time, take the casing off sausage, cut into small chunks; cook, drain off fat. Set aside.
3. Blend all cheeses; add eggs, salt, and pepper.
4. In large baking pan (Pyrex or throw-away tin) coat bottom with tomato gravy. Add layer of macaroni. Add layer of cheese mixture. Add meat (some of each). Repeat layers. You can also do what I do when I am feeling pretty lazy, which is mix everything together and it is a big cheesy mess. That is just how we like it in this house (see…its not a pretty meal, but just a delicious one).
5. Put plastic wrap, and then foil over. Freeze.
6. When ready to eat: defrost, Add Parmesan to top. Bake 325 degrees for 45-60 minutes.
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