Menu Planning Monday ~ March 7

Comfort food just seems necessary this week.  Winter just won’t let up here in New Jersey.  We’ve had several random days of 60-degree weather, but nothing that makes us feel like spring is here yet.  We had all the windows open in the house on Saturday; it was lovely!!  Today?  It’s windy and freezing.  *sigh*

Here’s what we’re eating this week:

Monday: Mom’s Meatloaf, green beans, fruit  (I’m making the meatloaf with 1/2 ground beef and 1/2 ground turkey.  I’ll use the other halves for burgers tomorrow night.)

Tuesday: Burgers, salad, beans

Wednesday: Baked fish almondine, asparagus, rice

Thursday: Marinated grilled pork tenderloin, salad, corn

Friday: Breakfast! Eggs, toast, turkey bacon

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Filed under Be healthy., Eat to Live, MPM

MilSpouse Friday Fill-in #32

Today I’m linking up to the MilSpouse Friday Fill-In.   You should, too!

1. Do you or your husband ever wish your husband was in a different branch of the military?

Not really… though we hear the Air Force is fairly cushy.  😉

2. What duty station(s) are on your “No Way, Hell No, Not Going, Have Fun Unaccompanied” list and why? 

I’m a firm believer that a duty station is what you make of it.  I think I could make a home out of a hovel.  That said, I’m pretty done with snow at this point!  One of his options for the next PCS was farther north, and I nixed that one pretty quickly.

3. If you could be one age forever, what age would you choose and why? 

I’ve been known to say that 30 was my favorite birthday.  I knew who I was by that point, and had stopped apologizing for it.  I’m 33 right now, and I’m pretty happy!  Age is just a number.

4. If you were a breakfast cereal, which one would you be?  

Probably something sensible and responsible and traditional, yet loved by many – I’d say Cheerios.  🙂

5. What is your morning beverage of choice and why? 

Coffee is non-negotiable.  Two cups, at least.  I shudder to think of a life without coffee (and so do those around me…).

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Murphy’s Laws of Tardiness

Murphy’s First Law of Tardiness:  The speed of the children involved is inversely proportional to the number of minutes by which the parent is running late. 

(That is to say, the later I’m running, the slower my kids are. At everything.)

Murphy’s Second Law of Tardiness:  The ability of necessary items to hide increases by a factor of ten for each minute by which the parent is running late. 

(Loosely translated as, “Where on earth is my car key?!?!”  Repeat twice a minute for twenty minutes whilst turning the house upside down.)

Murphy’s Third Law of Tardiness: The number of red lights between the parent and their final destination is directly proportional to the number of minutes by which the parent is running late. 

(In other words, every light was red this morning.)

Murphy’s Fourth Law of Tardiness:  The intensity of squabbles between children involved increases exponentially based upon the number of minutes by which the parent is running late. 

(“She hit me!” *insert angry baby babble and pointing here*  “But I didn’t do anything to her!”  *insert more intensely angry baby babble and pointing here*  Lather, rinse, repeat.)

All’s well that ends well, I suppose.  We are all in our proper places, hopefully with smiles on our faces.

I just hope Murphy’s had his fill of our house for awhile.

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WFMW ~ Do it now.

I used to be a huge procrastinator. I always figured I’d have more time to do it later.

But somewhere along the way, I finally figured out that I’ll never have more time. I’ve adopted the mantra that, for most things, “It’ll never be easier than it is right now.”

This mentality works for all sorts of things, from cleaning the toilet while the kids are in the bath to finally booking a hotel room for a family trip to DC (which I did yesterday!).

I think being an Army wife is teaching me that I need to grab what I can get, when I can get it, whether that’s time with my family or making a trip to a local landmark.  The truth is, though, that this do-it-now attitude is a mental shift.  Instead of sitting on my tukus doing nothing (though there is definintely a time to do *that*, too!), I just do what needs to be done.

Getting Things Done brings a feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment that is so much better than the dread of knowing I have to do somthing, or of feeling like I missed an opportunity.

Just do it *now* – it works for me!

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The Dog.

So we have this dog.

She’s really sweet and great around the kids and smallish and never makes a mess in the house.  She’s very calm and doesn’t eat much or chew anything.  She’s older, which is probably a contributing factor to her greatness.  If I could choose a dog, she would probably be it.

But she’s got us trained.  And we haven’t even had her that long.

Last fall, some friends of ours were in the process of moving and (to make a somewhat convoluted story short) couldn’t take her with them.  We offered to dog-sit while they were moving and… we just sort of… kept her.  Largely because the kids fell in love with her and I just couldn’t say no.

And she really is a great dog.  Really.

But she won’t go up the stairs by herself in the evening when it’s time to go to bed.

Maybe she has an excuse.  We have hardwood floors, even on the stairs. One of the first nights we had her, she was on her way up the stairs, when she slipped and literally tumbled tail-over-nose back down to the bottom.  She got up and shook it off, but being the Mommy that I am, I scooped her up and comforted her.  Then I carried her up the stairs to go to bed.  BIG. MISTAKE.

Now we have to carry her up the stairs every night.

Do you ever find yourself doing something that you’ve been routinely doing for awhile that really doesn’t hurt anything or anyone and think to yourself, “If anyone ever saw me doing this on a regular basis, I’d have a lot of explaining to do”?

That’s how I feel about having to carry the stupid obviously incredibly intelligent dog up the stairs every night.  Really, though, it’s the lesser of two evils.  If we don’t carry her up when we go to bed, she’ll eventually decide that she wants to be upstairs with us, and start barking.  Now, if she was one of my kids, I’d be all, “You have four perfectly good legs – figure it out!”  However, all of this barking is likely to wake the kids, and it’s easier to just go down the frickin’ stairs and carry up the stupid smarter-than-I-am dog.

I’ve even tried to teach her a lesson train her.  I’ll bring her up about halfway, set her down, and continue on my way.  Once or twice, she’s started on her way up, but slipped and fallen.  All the way back down the stairs.  And I swear she does it on purpose.  She’s probably all thinking to herself, “Hey, this worked that one time! If it ain’t broke…”  Other times, she just barks some more.  I don’t want her to wake the kids, so I go get her and bring her up.

Here’s the thing:  I know she can do it.  There have been times when she was downstairs when I left for work in the mornings, and, when I come home for lunch, she comes downstairs to greet me.

It just INFURIATES me. I mean, I have a four-year college degree. I’ve trained entire roomsful of teenagers to do exactly what I tell them. 

And I can’t get the stupid, manipulative dog to go up the $%@)!(* stairs.

So every night, when we get ready to go upstairs, I gather up stuff – my iPhone and cord, my Kindle.. and … The Dog.

Ugh.

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Things I Love Thursday – My Henckel Knife

I have this 7″ Santoku knife and I’m just a wee bit in love with it.  If I wasn’t already married, I might set my cap for it.

I use it every time I cook.  It’s a fairly heavy knife, but that’s a good thing.  I can let the weight of the knife do the work of cutting the food, while I just guide it.  The curvy handle fits in my hand just right. The length of the blade is perfect.

And the company that makes it stands by their product.

I had first purchased this knife three-ish years ago.  It’s not a cheap knife; I paid around $100 for it.  But I was in the market for a really good knife.  I wanted something that I could use and probably abuse everyday and would last awhile.  Take a lickin’ and keep on tickin’, as it were.

Plus, my mom has one just like it and I loved using hers.  It made me feel like I could have my own TV show.

So I brought home my fancy new knife. I sliced and I diced.  I chopped and I carved. I julienned and made french fries in seven different languages.  This knife and I, we danced in the kitchen like a blissfully romantic couple for three-ish beautiful years.

Then one day last fall, a chunk of the handle fell off.  Just… fell off.  And I was ticked off.  This knife was no longer on my dance card.

I fumed for a day or two, and then decided that a company should stand by what it sells.  Three years was a short life span for a $100 knife, wasn’t it?  Yes.

So I called them.  The guy said I had to mail in the knife, and then they’d look at it to see what sort of a defect it was.  If it was a manufacturer’s defect, they’d replace it for free.  If it was my own darn fault, then I was out of luck.  Seems like that isn’t an unreasonable stance for them to take.

I wrote an eloquent letter about how I wanted to marry my knife but couldn’t, tenderly wrapped it up, and sent it off.  It took forever for them to get to my knife, but it was over the Christmas holiday… so maybe that’s an excuse.  I called faithfully each week to check up on my lame dance partner, but each week they told me that they hadn’t gotten to it.  Then, one day, miracle of miracles (!), they told me that I was getting a new one.

Hallelujah and praise the baby Jesus!

So now I have a new edition of my old dance partner.  We’ve fallen back into our easy rhythm.  Only now, I lovingly hand wash him after each use… and I’m sure he enjoys it.

My Henckel knife is definitely a Thing I Love!

For more Things I Love Thursday posts, click the button up there to go to The Diaper Diaries.  Add your own to the list!

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WFMW ~ Early Bedtimes

I’m a firm believer in a 7:30 bedtime for our kids.  There are lots of reasons for it. 

The most important one is that, in the hectic craziness that is our two-full-time-jobs-two-young-kids life, it’s very hard to find time to spend together as husband and wife.  Putting the kids to sleep before we’re too tired to do more than collapse into bed allows us to enjoy time together.  Sometimes we catch up on what we’ve recorded on the DVR.  Sometimes we sit in the living room and enjoy the quiet while we work (or play!) on our laptops.  Sometimes we play cards.  Sometimes we catch up on logistics (bill paying, schedules, and all the other flotsam and jetsam that is necessary to keep our lives running smoothly).  Sometimes we… don’t do any of those.  😉

 I also know that our kids need lots of sleep to function normally (read: pleasantly) during the day.  They are up around 6:30 everyday during the week, so going to sleep at 7:30 makes sure that they can do what they need to do.  I’m sure their teachers appreciate it, too. 

Getting the kids to bed early works for us!

 For more Works for me Wednesday tips, head to We are THAT Family.

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Filed under Everyday Bliss, Family, WFMW