I’ve never been much of a cook so I’m always on the hunt for easy and healthy dishes to make for the family. I’m also one lucky lady because my husband is actually a better cook than I am AND he actually enjoys cooking. So in our family we’ve decided to switch off each week who cooks dinner. It makes it so neither of us get overwhelmed with too much cooking. We do two weeks a month where we order HelloFresh (post coming soon) so we have that for three dinners which also helps cut down on the stress of figuring it all out.
I try to keep it simple when possible and to keep costs down. So here are a few of my favorite go to options for dinner
Chili Mac – although this one isn’t crazy healthy it’s delicious and makes tons of leftovers! It’s toddler and husband approved too
Healthy Mac ‘n Cheese – I LOVE this stuff. I don’t use as much cheese as it lists and I change out the veggie each time I make it. I also will often add a protein. This one is very toddler approved and even my husband likes the “healthier” option
5 Ingredient Pesto Pasta – I LOVE this dish because it is literally the easiest thing ever. We actually had it for dinner the other night. Ryley also enjoys this one, but without the leafy greens
Salsa Chicken – this one is great because it can be used in so many ways! We make burrito bowls, salads, mix it with rice, quesadillas, the options are endless. R likes it with some greek yogurt and avocado for lunch. The one I normally make it actually just chicken, adobo seasoning and salsa. I vary the salsa to keep it fun
What are your favorite simple go-to meals?
As I sat doing laundry the other day and “folding” my underwear, I realized I have way too many pairs of old lady underwear. I bought these when I was pregnant and preparing for postpartum recovery. Everything I read talked about how much I would be bleeding afterwards so to buy some crappy but comfortable underwear you didn’t mind ruining. So I went on Amazon, because I definitely didn’t want to be seen in Target buying these things, and purchased 10 pair granny panties.
But, lucky for me I didn’t have a huge amount of bleeding. So all those granny panties i bought? Well they were not ruined and instead I’m actually wearing them. It’s kind of embarrassing to admit that I’m wearing this bad of granny panties. Don’t get me wrong I love my bikini style underwear but these ones? These ones are just not good. They have thick waistbands, thick fabric, and lots of them are white… It’s like I’m wearing men’s whitey tighties. I’m sure you ladies understand what I’m talking about, we all have our Period Panties.
So.. I’ve decided. It is time to take back my underwear drawer. I’m headed to Victoria Secret, semi-annual sale anyone, to get some new options that make me feel great about my post-baby body. Who’s with me?!?!
One of my favorite things to do is browse Pinterest. I’ve been using it since before our wedding and have been addicted since. There are so many awesome things out there, now I just need to find the time and motivation to actually do all those things 🙂
So this summer I made a Summer Bucket List board for all the great projects I want to work on. There are LOTS of things on there and I’m hoping I can actually get most of them done.
I’ve started work on the entry hall – pictures to come. I’ve also been working on the play kitchen. In fact I had a fun time setting it up the other day to “make sure” all the accessories I had purchased fit 🙂
With R’s birthday coming up I’ve also been doing LOTS of DIY decor
And the garden is coming along too….(sorry for the dark picture, this was at night and I haven’t had a chance to get a new pic)
I’m working on lots of other projects too. So many things at once, I’m a total multi-tasker. I’m never the type to keep to one project until it’s done. I get bored, so I try to mix it up and have lots of things going at once. My husband is the total opposite, he’s not exactly good at multi-tasking 🙂
What sorts of projects do you have on your list?
For Christmas 2015 Matt and I gave his parents a trip to Hawaii! It was pretty cute, we actually make a basket for them with a pineapple shaped cutting board, macadamia nuts, a coconut scented candle and a few leis with no note about what it all meant. So we opened presents via Facetime so that we could see the confusion on their faces before we told them what it all meant 🙂 It was quite fun!
So fast forward to May 2016 and we are all headed on a fabulous vacation to Kauai. We prefer staying in condos or houses so I scoured VRBO to find the best fit. We finally landed on a place on the Central Coast about 10 minutes north of the airport near Kapaa. It was SO beautiful!! We were right on the beach and the complex had a wonderful pool surrounded by a gorgeous lawn for Ryley to run in.
This was our first big trip with Ryley so we weren’t sure what we were in for. But honestly inn the end it was amazing! We tried to do a mix of kid stuff and adult stuff. Luckily with the in-laws along with us we were able to do that. Matt and I got to go ziplining with Skyline Adventure. They are located at The Shops at Kukuiula which was an adorable place. We enjoyed a quick snack at Living Foods Market. Loved that place, wish we had one here. It is a grocery market with a great lunch counter where you can get sandwiches and lots of other delicious options. Afterwards we enjoyed lunch at Tortilla Republic Grill and then the most amazing Mai Tai at Merriman’s. OMG you have to try this, so good!!
The other thing we did on our own was attend a luau. It was also really fun even though it rained HARD the whole time. Luckily we were under cover but the poor dancers were out in the rain! It was still a blast. I highly recommend checking out Smith’s Family Luau. It was quite a fun show.
So on to the activities that we did while with Ryley. Aside from lots of pool and beach time we enjoyed a few spots I’d highly recommend for people heading over with young kiddos. Here is our list of our favorites:
- Fern Grotto Cruise – this is a big boat where they sing and dance while you head over to the Fern Grotta. It’s a beautiful geological wonder! The hike to it from the boat is short and easy for Ryley to walk as well. Perfect and easy for young kids
- Sprouting Horn Park – it’s the Old Faithful of Kauai. It’s cute and then there is a little tourist market to walk through and check out cute stuff. Ryley got a little stuff chicken to commemorate all the chickens they have in Kauai 🙂
- National Botanical Garden – right down the street from Sprouting Horn is this awesome garden. It is truly beautiful and even has some great Lego statues the kids love
- Lydgate Beach Park – an AWESOME place to take the little ones swimming. There is a rock formation that reduces the waves coming so the little ones can more easily play in the water. R had a blast playing in the water, going in the ocean and playing in the sand. They also have a really cool playground that R loved, it was truly unique
- Koloa Rum Company – although it’s a rum thing this is a great place for kids. They have an awesome train ride that takes you around the grounds. Then the kids get to feed pigs and goats and you all get to check out awesome scenary. They also have a great rum tasting available BUT no one under 21 is allowed in the room so you’ll have to find someone to watch the little on
We also had some great food! Both more Hawaiian and more “boring”. Here are a few of our faves:
- Merriman’s – not only was the Mai Tai good but they had a great kalua pork quesadilla
- Puka Dog – this comes from a friend of mine, we never had the chance to try it but some of the locals also told us it was great
- DaCrack – we also didn’t try this one but our zipline instructors highly recommended it
- Street Burger – this place had seriously the BEST burgers ever! And amazing service
Hopefully this gives some of you some ideas for an upcoming trip you might have. Really most of our time was spent relaxing on our patio and our beach. It was such a great week and a much needed time to relax!
This is the excerpt for your very first post.
Back to blogging? Giving it another try and we’ll see how it all goes. I’ve tried this a few times and I end up getting busy and not being able to keep up. But we’ll try again 🙂
I’m hoping to share with everyone my life with the little one. Things about crafts, play dates, parks, vacations, recipes, and all the other exciting things this little lady brings to my life!
So here’s to starting something new…again. Join me on my journey on this SAHM adventure. The ups, the downs, the craziness that it is. Not every day is sunshine and blue skies, although we do live in California so it’s most days, so I will be sharing those cloudy days too. Come along for the ride.
Ryley and I had a BLAST at Comanche Park the other day. It is brand new and was a great adventure for her! Here is the review from Silicon Valley Toddler. As much as loved the park I have a slightly different perspective than she does since Ryley is quite a bit younger.
At 13 months there were some serious pros:
- A small slide off to the side with stairs that she could climb up
- A low tunnel and bridge she loved climbing on
- The awesome rubbery squishy ground, seriously love this stuff and is good for crawlers
- The toddler structure has 2 slide options, both of which she loved
But also at 13 months there were some negatives:
- Ryley is still a swing lover and there is only 1 baby swing, need 2 at minimum
- The structure was a little high for her and the openings where she could fall were on opposite sides so I had to run between them as she climbed up
- There was only one way for her to get up onto the structure and even that wasn’t totally enclosed
- I really wish when they built new parks they would put in shade structures!
The structure does say 2-5 year olds so I’m playing at my own risk but really I need places to take my kid too. There are definitely better parks for kids Ryley’s age but if you have an adventurous toddler or just want a change of scenery this is a good option, just be sure to watch your little one. With all the extra stuff off to the side I do still recommend the park for the little ones.
I also enjoyed the look of the park, so fun with lots of colors. They had 4 person tables around which were great as well. There was a small lovely green grass hill behind the toddler structure too, it was calling “roll down me”! 🙂 Some day when Ryley is big enough I can’t wait to do that with her, be silly and just enjoy the grass!
What are some of your favorite young toddler parks?
In our family we LOVE food. A favorite activity of Matt and I pre-baby was enjoying amazing food. I miss those days of spending our extra income on food and wine instead of baby ha.
With Ryley we’ve been doing baby led weaning – basically that means she gets to eat what we eat, most of the time anyways. So for Mother’s Day after a day of fun I decided I wanted sushi for dinner. We headed over to Yuki Sushi in Willow Glen, which by the way has an amazing happy hour! The line was literally half way down the block! Luckily we squeezed in to the last available table.
Instead of miso soup this place serves noodles as their “appetizer”. And well apparently this is Ryley’s favorite food. Check out this video, so cute!
Ryley has been a good eater from the start. Last night we had salmon and she loved that too. Veggies aren’t really her fave but everything else she is great with. There has yet to be something that she didn’t go back for more. Hopefully Matt and I can turn her into to a foodie just like us!
On Monday Ryley and I had our first PLANNED day of just 1 nap. I was a little nervous. How do I keep a 10 month old occupied and enjoying life for a 4 hour stretch and then a 6 hour stretch?!?! But we made it through!!
The morning was mostly taken up by going to the gym. Good excuse to go to the gym – keep Ryley occupied!
After our nap we decided to head over to Cahalan Park. I had read on Silicon Valley Toddler that it was a great option for young toddlers because they had a structure that was really short. Seriously – the structure was PERFECT! Ryley recently learned how to climb the stairs so this was additional practice climbing up the levels. There are 5 levels from the ground and only one has a part where they could fall, but it’s very low to the ground.
It took her a good 15 minutes to climb up. She was rather intrigued by the wood chips, one downfall of this playground, and I had to brush them off to keep her from trying to eat them. But she made it and then I helped her slide down the slide. We did it 3 times and then the sun starting hitting that area so we decided it was time to head home. The playground looks like it would be more shaded during other parts of the day but I’m not certain. The swings and the larger toddler structure had no shade. We’ll have to check it out at another time of day.
We had a really great time. Ryley got to actually experience a playground instead of just looking at it from the swing. It was a lot more fun for me too! I would absolutely suggest this playground to anyone with younger toddlers!
If you check it out let me know what you think!
As you know I’m the Recruitment and Marketing Advisor for the ADPi Chapter at Santa Clara. I LOVE being an advisor! It has been amazing to get back involved with ADPi and help these women through their collegiate days.
Recently our Chapter Advisor went back to work full time so she has decided to take a step back and has moved over to Finance Advisor. That left the role of Chapter Advisor open so for a few weeks I’ve been playing both Recruitment and Chapter Advisor roles.
Chapter Advisor is definitely different. I like it though, I’m excited to help the women in a different way. I think we may have found a new Recruitment & Marketing Advisor too so looks like I’ll likely be staying on as Chapter Advisor. YAY. I can’t wait to see how this all goes.
Wish me luck!
So I’ve been away for almost 5 months. Not good, I was hoping I’d really get into this blogging thing. I go places and take lots of pictures of things I want to blog about but then just never get around to it.
Quick info on what we’ve been up to:
Can you believe Ryley is 10 months old! Seriously time has flown, it’s literally crazy! I love this little lady, she is just amazing! She loves to eat, pretty much everything, enjoys pulling herself to standing and walking assisted, going to the park and enjoying the swing, and lots more! We’ve been enjoying the California weather and we get to a park almost every day.
We are also in the process of buying a house! Can you believe it! We’ve decided to make some roots here in CA. We are super excited! It’s a bit smaller than the rental we are in but honestly this place has way more space than we really need and it’s not the safest of houses for a little one (with the pool and tons of stairs). So be on the lookout for more pictures and postings about the house!
I’m going to try to get at least one post per week. Ryley has dropped down to 1 nap so we are going to have to fill out time with things to do so I should I have lots to report on.
See ya again soon!