Things have been a little crazy around here. Juggling soccer and baseball for my almost 5-year-old, potty training my 2 1/2 year old, and hosting my daughter’s Baptism celebration at my house for about 40 of our family and friends. We have also been hitting pumpkin patches, apple orchards, and enjoying the beautiful fall weather that Mother Nature sent our way for most of September and October. I also had a little blog hiccup which caused me to pull back a little in writing. I missed the site though…so, I have a ton of posts which are in draft mode which I need to finish up, and about a million things brewing in my head that I need to just put fingers to keyboard on. With that behind us, I am jumping back on the pumpkin train. I saw a funny picture a couple of weeks ago on FB that had Forrest Gump saying – pumpkin coffee, pumpkin donuts, pumpkin soup, etc (picture the scene where he is talking about all the kinds of shrimp). I think that this is going to have to be my last pumpkin post for fear of sounding like Forrest…so enjoy this Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream Cake. It is, for lack of a better word, awesome. Seriously.
This past weekend, we went apple picking. It is one of my favorite family activities of the fall, and I look forward to it as soon as the leaves start turning. More on our adventures in an upcoming post, but I was so excited to make some of my favorite dishes to use some of our tasty apples. This Apple and Cranberry pork is so delicious. The sweet flavors make it a hit with the kids as well. My husband who is not a huge fan of pork liked it as well. I have a reader who asked in a past post why my husband didn’t like pork. Well, side story….I went a little overboard during the swine flu time, where people thought that pork was affected, and it was always on sale – so I would buy it, and make pork 1-2 times a week. He was so over “the other white meat”, I now only make pork dishes once every 2-3 months, even though I am a big fan. Ah, marriage is all about compromise, right? Either way….enjoy this Apple and Cranberry Pork Dish – it is a huge hit for me and the kids
Place apple slices and apple jelly over the pork, then add the onion, cranberries, vinegar, and mustard.
Seal and freeze.
When you would like to eat this, thaw the pork in the refridgerator. Preheat the oven to 350. Place the roast in the center of the baking dish, put the apples, onions, and cranberries around the pork. Bake for approximately an hour and a half, or until the roast reaches 160 degrees.
Disclosure: Information on Cabbage Patch Kids 30th Anniversary provided by JAKKS Pacific, MMB received the item which will be provided for the giveaway.
The other week, I shared a bit about my favorite childhood toy, my cabbage patch kids and the 30th Anniversary Cabbage Patch Kid Celebration. As I mentioned, my daughter has totally taken over as mommy to the dolls of my past, and loves them just as much as I did back in the day. With the release of Cabbage Patch Kids 30th anniversary dolls, I was so excited for my daughter to receive a new CPK doll – one that maybe wasn’t as “loved” by her mom!
The CPK Celebration kid was the perfect one for my daughter. It is described as dressed in fun, playful, party themed fashions with brightly colored hair streaks, the ‘Kids™ are ready to party.
Um, yes, that sounds just like my daughter! She immediately loved the pink streaks in the doll’s pig tails, the funky boots, and she loved her birth certificate that makes the doll “hers”. I am absolutely in love with this line, and so is my daughter! I am excited, because I am sure that this will line will be a hit with MMB readers, and I am able to provide one for a giveaway.
Please use the rafflecopter entry below to win your own version of the Cabbage Patch Kids 30th Anniversary Celebration Kid. The entries start off with telling me what child in your life would love this doll and why a Rafflecopter giveaway
Don’t forget about the other two new types of CPK dolls as well:
Cabbage Patch Kids® Babies (SRP $24.99, Ages 3+) come with either a magic disappearing-milk bottle or food bowl with spoon, removable biband fashion. Of course, each baby has a unique name, Adoption Papers® and Birth Certificate®. The original baby-powder scent of Cabbage Patch Kids® can bring memorable smiles for generations.
The Cabbage Patch Kids® Cuties (SRP $9.99, Ages 3+) are even cuddlier this fall! Theadorable Cuties come in a variety of precious animal themes including bear, bunny and kitty with a new thumb-sucking feature. www.cabbagepatchkids.com
Ok, I warned you that I was obsessed with fall flavors! Next up in Fall Flavor obsessions are pumpkin twice baked potatoes. My neighbor and I each receive the Food Network magazine. We look through the magazine, and pick out the recipes to try, talk about how we would change them, and finally…make the recipes After reading through the magazine, these potatoes were first on my list to try, as I love twice baked potatoes, but rarely take the time to make them. I found that making whipping them in the stand mixer, adding more scallions, some milk, and a little more pumpkin and cheese to these potatoes made them a little better for our family. All in all, these pumpkin twice baked potatoes are delicious….as in husband complimenting, kid clean plate club kind of delicious. They were the perfect complement to our steak dinner (steak marinated in Stubbs, along with some broiled zucchini and tomatoes tossed with olive oil, salt, pepper and parmesan cheese), and I think it would be an awesome side dish for Thanksgiving. I love that you can freeze these as well, which would help if you are making them for something like Thanksgiving, and want to minimize your preparations right before the big feast.
As we head into week 8 with Baby C, I have become a bit more confident in my outings with my 3 munchkins, also known (to me especially) as my traveling circus. I no longer fear going out as much as I did the first time. We have done parks, stores, the mall, multiple playgrounds, sports games, church and we have even done some restaurants. Last week, I was about to pop into Target to pick up snacks for my son’s baseball and soccer teams, and got a quick call from my friend Jen, another momma to three. When I mentioned what I was about to do, she said – “Let’s take a bet on how many times you will hear the words…“It looks like you have your hands full.” I was so grateful to hear her say that, because honestly, no less than 10 times in my last outings, I heard those words. I really thought it was just me.
As we walked down aisle number one, my daughter let out a whine when I said that I didn’t bring a snack to the store. A fellow shopper looked over with “the look” and said the dreaded words.
We walked down another aisle and my son tugged on his sister’s pig tails. It is one of his favorite things to do, and oddly, something that she finds pretty funny. Regardless of the laughter in my shopping cart that followed the tug…we encountered another stare, and the words were said again.
And finally, at check out, my confident-self was busted when, despite attempting to predict a newborn’s eating schedule, I screwed up. My littlest started to scream and scream. Despite my attempts to soothe her while we were in line, she let everyone in the store know that she needed to eat. She still has that identifiable newborn cry, so the looks were a bit more piercing, like “how young is that baby that you dare take out to the store?!?!” The other instances I could handle, but not being able to calm my baby rattles me to the core…I can’t take it when my babies are sad and I can’t fix it. And coinciding with this crappy feeling, someone made the distinct point to walk over to me, tap my elbow, and say the words. “It looks like you have your hands full.” I guess they figured I really needed to hear their words, and I needed the tap. Because you know, I was paying too much attention to my children, who needed me at that point. My response the last time was a polite...”No Sh!t.” (As a side note to my mother…Mom, I know you read this, as do some of your friends, and you will shake your head at me at this time, but please remember, I take more after Dad than you, and everyone knows it. No one will think less of you)
I am quite certain by the horrified look on the older woman’s face that those were not the words she expected to hear from me. But seriously – No Sh!t that my hands are full. What was I supposed to say – omigosh, you’re right. Maybe they’ll take the third one back at the hospital so that I can get through these trips to Target more easily. No sh!t my hands are full. To make a simple trip to the store, I pack a bag that is the equivalent to most people of an overnight bag. I buckle car seats 6 times. Not only do I have to remember to bring home the three kids I came with, but I also remember how many dolls and cars came to the store with us. Oh and sometimes we have days where my daughter decides shoes are optional so I also have to check every three minutes to ensure that we have the socks and shoes that we went to the store with as well.
My hands are full. Yes. My days are full as well. Starting when baby girl wakes up with the roosters (we don’t really have roosters, but you know what I mean) to eat, and her brother and sister follow shortly after…right until I check everyone’s room at the end of the day to ensure they are peacefully asleep, the day is full. Dinner is made at 7 in the morning, I shower at 2 in the afternoon when at least 2 kids are napping because I do things when I have the chance. There are the texts I respond to at 2 in the morning, because I have hands free (at least one, that is…and by the way, sorry to my friends that I woke up last night, but honestly, who leaves their phone volume on at night???). And there are the moments where I realize I have cut 60 nails (toes and fingers), or served 12 meals (or really 19 if you count the growth spurt eating binge of late), and have not really sat down, besides to feed a baby or pee, at all in a given day. My days are full, because there are three kids, whose ages do not even add up to 7, that rely on me. I have pretty quickly become a crappy friend, daughter, and sometimes person…do I need a reminder? I’ll pass. Do I need a reminder from a stranger? No f#cking thank you.
So my hands are full, my days are full, but as a momma to three, my heart is full. My life is full. I am blessed. Life is full of love, hugs, laughter. Life is also full of frustration, tears, and exhaustion. I chose this life – I chose to have my children close in age, and was fortunate that God let me have that choice. As a mom, I do the best that I can every day, and some days, the best, is simply surviving. For the most part though, my children are happy and more importantly, they are healthy. While life is crazy, I know that our life is good.
Are there really any moms who deserve “the look”, or any words besides supportive ones? Now this is not including if they are smacking their kid or letting their child be a completely destructive brat…then I do judge, I must admit. So, if you are one of the people who are tempted to say those dreaded words – “You look like you have your hands full”, or anything similar to that, please remember those mom’s hands may be full, but her heart is full as well. At the end of the day, that is all that matters.
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