Meal Pinning Monday

I postponed MPM yesterday for a little post about our 7th wedding anniversary. Today we're back at it with this week's meals, prepare yourself, I'm basically living at the grill.




[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Monday - Anniversary Dinner (ate crawfish sans baby)

Tuesday - Marinated & Grilled Summer Veg with Sausage

Wednesday - Leftovers

Thursday - West African Chicken & Peanut Stew (a fav of mine)

Friday - Chicken & Veg in Foil

Saturday - Nana's Pot Roast

Sunday - Leftover @ Lunch
Dinner - Roast Chicken with Herb Sauce with Sauteed Spinach & Potatoes

7th Anniversary

I feel like this year should be titled "Not as bad as we expected on so little sleep."

Despite what adding a baby to the mix does, we had a great year. 


There were up and downs like every year, but looking back what comes to mind is good.

The bad isn't worth dwelling on, and hey, the baby decided we were worthy of sleep for a few nights. Ha!

So here's to 43 more years until we hit the big 50!

Current marriage stats include - We've lived in 3 towns, 4 houses, 2 big trips by plane(Italy & Puerto Rico), 1 baby, 1 house bought, 5 job changes for me, 2 graduate degrees accomplished (he's much smarter with that specialist), 3 dogs (Rudy was sent to the "farm" aka my parents house).

Tonight my favorite sister (the only one) watched Harrison while we went on a date for a meal you can't eat with a baby... boiled crawfish.

Next week we're headed to NOLA for our anniversary and I've got a few new places to eat on my list, I'll be sharing after we get back about that one. 

new mamas, it's totally okay

After talking to several moms in the past few weeks about feelings regarding that immediate intense love you're supposed to feel towards your newborn, I thought maybe we should discuss it here.

Because let's be honest, not everyone has the overwhelming love feeling as soon as the baby pops out.


Sometimes it isn't even when you're leaving the hospital.

Or the first night at home.

We do however, have an idea in our heads of what it should look and feel like. The problem comes when our expectations aren't met.

But we're told that we should be so in love, and sobbing in photos as we clutch our newborn to our chests. We should take photos and look happy, even in front of the house when you get home even. (We didn't take a photo, there wasn't anyone here to take it and I was probably not in the postpartum state to be taking one.)

We're told the worst part of coming home is the lack of sleep.

We even see new mom's posting all over social media about how much they just love their little darling, leaving us wondering if something is wrong with how we feel.

After thinking it was just me for so long, I'm here to tell you it's not just you either.

Love grows.

I love my husband more now, after 7 years, way more than I did initially. Lord help us all if I only love him as much as I first did, we wouldn't have made it this far.

That baby I birthed a little over a year ago, I love him more today as well.

When he was first born I wasn't all gushy-eyed over him. I didn't cry. I didn't have this "Oh my gosh I'm so overwhelmed with love" moment.

The only thing I felt after being in labor all day was can I now have a good guzzle of water and a granola bar.

I'm here to tell you that (before the postpartum woes set in) while I was being sewn back together I was stripped down to my birthday suit with a naked baby on my chest (who was nuzzling around trying to nurse by the way) while I ate a granola bar and downed water.

I wasn't sobbing.

I just kept asking when I could have a sandwich.

Then, after I was told I had to get my tail out of bed and walk or the catheter was coming back, did I focus on walking.

Once the hormones started doing weird things to me I just wanted to cry. I was a hot mess going home, and I cried in bed that entire evening.

Then come week one we were inundated with visitors and I couldn't get myself together at all without space alone, so I continued to sink.

It wasn't until week two when love was an emotion I could feel again.

Then around 6 months I looked at that baby and thought "I don't think I could love anyone more."

It's been the same ever since, a new day equals more love.

Those first 72-ish hours in the hospital though, it was all survival. I didn't come home posting photos all happy and such because I wasn't happy. In fact the second I was able to lay on the couch and sleep, someone came over.

So new mama's don't think you're terrible when you don't feel gushy in love that very first second or the first week. It's normal. It's okay to feel awful when you're healing from the trauma of birth.

You'll love your baby more as the postpartum mental fuzziness fades.

And you'll love him even more every day after that. 

73 Questions

Have you seen the Vogue 73 Questions videos? I watched a few the other night and loved Sarah Jessica Parker, then again I just love her style and personality. So when I saw that Rachel & Kristin has posted a 73 Questions I had to jump in.

  1. What are you most excited about these days?  Going to New Orleans in June on a mini vacay. It's mainly an excuse to eat at new places and take the kiddo to the aquarium. Plus I found a bed & breakfast for way cheaper than the hotels, score! 
  2. Favorite holiday? Thanksgiving, the weather is perfect, we cook everything we can come up wtih, and everyone just hangs out. I love a good low stress holiday with cool weather.
  3. Favorite season? That 10 minutes of cool/cold weather we get in Louisiana. Some call it fall, we call it "not as hot summer."
  4. Recent hobby? Gardening, so far I've got two tomatoes and I've killed numerous things. 
  5. If you could switch lives with someone for a day, who would it be? Who's a person that gets to sleep all night and travel more than I do?
  6. If you could have coffee with someone from the past, who would it be? Princess  Diana
  7. What’s the best thing that happened this year? Paying off my car? I know, super exciting.
  8. What’s the best way to decompress? Watching Time Team on Youtube and soaking in the tub.
  9. What’s the weirdest word in the English language? Hmmm?
  10. If you had one superpower, what would it be? Mind reading
  11. Who do you miss most? My grandmother
  12. Who was the last person to text you? Jeremy
  13. Who are three people, alive or dead, that you would have dinner with? Duchess of Cambridge, George Harrison, Sue Perkins
  14. Last book you read? Lady Catherine, The Early, and the Real Downton Abby
  15. Book you plan on reading? On Becoming Pre-Toddler Wise
  16. Book you read bc everyone else in the world was reading it? Eat Dirt
  17. A book from your childhood that positively shaped you? Harry Potter, I loved the friendship and being yourself side of it. 
  18. Favorite tv show that’s currently on tv? I've started watching There Goes The Motherhood, it's funny but not amazing. My biggies that I'm waiting to come back on are The Great British Bake Off & Call the Midwife. 
  19. Favorite ice cream? Any ice cream. Except Mint Chocolate Chip, people who like that need their head examined. 
  20. What makes you smile the most? Stand up comedy and actually sleeping though the night.
  21. First pet? Buffy our male golden retriever with a female name.
  22. Worst subject in school? Math
  23. Favorite game? I'm not a big game person, 4 Corners is pretty decent though. 
  24. Coolest thing in the world? How far technology has come in general since my childhood. 
  25. Cutest thing in the world? A sleeping baby (seeing the pattern yet?)
  26. Favorite thing in the world? Pizza & Ice Cream dates in bed watching movies, Johnny's Pizza of course. 
  27. One talent you wish you had? The ability to sew.
  28. One thing you still have from your childhood? Tons of photos and a whole bunch of magazines from when Princess Diana died.
  29. What’s your patronus? A dog? I'm loyal, heck if I know. 
  30. Last song you listened to on your phone? True life, there isn't a single song on my phone.
  31. Favorite song lyrics? And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make - The End by The Beatles
  32. What song would you probably be caught dancing alone to? I basically dance to everything, the baby has heightened the need to dance just to see what he does.
  33. If you could work the runway, what song would it be? Got To Be Real - blame it on my early 20's and watching Carrie on Sex and the City in college. When I think runway that comes to mind. I would have linked the actual clip from SATC but it had some language in it. 
  34. Best gift you’ve ever given? Confession, I'm a terrible gift giver. I make Jeremy tell me what he wants. 
  35. Fashion icon? Catherine Middleton (she's so classic) combined with Sarah Jessica Parker
  36. What did you wear to your prom? A huge poofy strapless sequined bodice dress in teal/aqua. 
  37. Who was your date to your prom? My high school boyfriend, and let me just say it was the worst night ever. The worst! 
  38. Favorite movie of all time? Hocus Pocus
  39. Favorite movie of the last five years? I thought the Hunger Games were good, but I've been told I slept through them. 
  40. Movie that made you cry? I'm not a movie crier. 
  41. Movie that made you laugh the hardest? I sleep through movies, I'm sure there was a funny one but honestly I can't remember lol! 
  42. If you could make a documentary, what would it be about? Food or something historical
  43. Favorite TV show? The Great British Bake Off
  44. If you could make a cameo in any TV show what would it be? Pioneer Woman Cooks
  45. Best plot twist of all time? I'm not a drama person, comedy yes, but there aren't a lot of twists in comedy. 
  46. Twitter or Instagram? Instagram, no one uses Twitter much these days. 
  47. Who should everyone be following right now? Honey Holden
  48. Favorite food? Italian
  49. Favorite dessert? Ice Cream
  50. Favorite band? The Beatles
  51. Favorite solo artist? Ehh?
  52. If you could sing a duet with anyone, who would it be? George Harrison
  53. What would be the title of your autobiography? Mild Case of Hippie
  54. Favorite sound? Wind chimes during the fall, or a bonfire
  55. Least favorite sound? Cracking knuckles
  56. Favorite animal? Dogs
  57. First celebrity crush? Lance Bass, N'SYNC days
  58. Current celebrity crush? Nada
  59. What is your kryptonite? Chocolate
  60. Guilty pleasure? Ice Cream 
  61. Most proud moment? Surviving childbirth and nursing for a year straight+
  62. Biggest weakness? Sweets
  63. Skill still unmastered? Anything crafty
  64. What is the definition of misery? Zero sleep or sick
  65. Biggest learning experience? Living alone in college
  66. What is your idea of a perfect date? Coffee, a new local restaurant we haven't been to, or a fun dessert. Any of those 3 would work. 
  67. An experience when you felt the most nervous? Absolutely any time I've had to present something for a class or speak in front of people, minus my classroom. Kids are different. 
  68. At what age were you the happiest? 29-30 has been good
  69. What’s one vice you wish you could give up? Sweets! 
  70. If you could teach a college course, what would it be called? What not to do in college.
  71. If you could star in any movie remake, what would it be? Hocus Pocus! 
  72. If you were an Olympic athlete, what would your event be? Speed Shopping, I can get us out of the grocery store quick in the event no one complains about how fast I walk and the store isn't jam packed. 
  73. If you could offer your 13-year-old self one piece of advice, what would it be? The beliefs you had going into high school... stick with those. Don't let boys change your mind about things and being a snob about drinking and smoking totally paid off. Peer pressure ain't worth it. Also, you'll never fit a 14 slim again, soak that up. 

Meal Pinning Monday

Hello first full week of summer, it is so nice to finally see you. 

Too bad you didn't come with an over abundance of sleep. However, you did come with a baby who shakes his head yes while saying "yeah." I'm blaming that mainly on the fact that he is copying us and I tend to shake my head while saying yeah in conversations.

It's cute though. 



[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Monday - Chicken Bacon Ranch Skillet with Roasted Sprouts & Potatoes for the men folk

Tuesday - Shrimp Malacca (paleo by coincidence)

Wednesday - Paleo Meatballs with Zoodles (probably tossing in a mashed tater for the guys)

Thursday - Caramelized Onion Spaghetti Squash Casserole with Sausage (meatless is a sin around here)

Friday - leftovers

Saturday - Paleo Pizza Soup

Sunday - leftovers

Breakfast - Oatless Oatmeal (more like a porridge, but it was good)

Lunch - Bowl of Doom

Grout Cleaning Made Easy

I have a little cleaning secret I'm sharing today.

It's especially useful for those of you who have a home that the grout isn't sealed.


Clorox Toilet  Bowl Cling Bleach Gel

That's it.

All I do is cover the grout lines with the cling bleach and let it sit about 2 hours, then I mop it up with hot water and scrub it really good with the mop.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The previous owners had large dogs and I don't think the grout was ever sealed, as soon as we moved in my overly pregnant self wanted to do this but Jeremy continued to put me off of it.

Now that it's finally summer break I had the chance to do it and it looks amazing.

Just a warning though, do this when small children and animals aren't around, the smell is pretty harsh and it will burn your eyes. This isn't exactly a green cleaning method (like I prefer to use), but it worked really well on this tough job.

For someone who's lived in several houses and had several houses of nasty grout, this is the way to go.

I promise! 

Meal Pinning Monday

Alright y'all, I'm going to be honest about the Tone It Up meal plan. 

I love the layout of when to eat what, but the amount of sugar consumed on that diet is out of this world insane for myself. 

Like week one was great, added some quinoa to my diet which I hadn't had in years. 
Week two was teacher appreciation week and I struggled. 
Week three I essentially planned all healthy meals and then woke up for an apparent food blackout covered in Oreo's and bloated as all get-out. 

It was so bad that I'm starting another Whole30 Monday to reset myself. Like seriously, I was drinking hot tea without any sweetener and after a few weeks of TIU I'm basically huffing stevia packets. 



[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Monday - Crockpot Balsamic Chicken with Green Beans and Sauteed Kale
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Tuesday - Honey Mustard Chicken Wings, minus the honey with whatever veggie laying around the fridge

Wednesday - Puerto Rican Pork (Chicken) with Mojo Sauce & Avocado Salad

Thursday - Leftovers with Cauliflower Rice

Friday - Shakshuka

Saturday - Tuscan Pork Chops with Zoodles for me and Roasted Potatoes for the guys

Sunday - Lunch - Buffalo Chicken Casserole

Sunday Dinner - Chicken Bacon Ranch Skillet with Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Breakfast - Small Sweet Potato with Salt & Pepper with 3 Eggs cooked in 1 tsp Ghee

Lunch - Curried Chicken Tenderloins over Rainbow Kale with Bottom of the Jar dressing & veggies

10 Things I'm Loving

It's been a long time since I did a products I'm obsessed with post, so it's high time to do another one. Below you'll find what I'm currently using and why I love it.

Be sure to let me know what you're loving in the comments section!



1. Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer - super easy to apply and stays on great. I've been using this for about 5 years without any desire to try a different brand. It's great for highlighting and contouring as well.

2. Not Your Mother's Way to Grow Shampoo & Conditioner - I tried previously to get rid of sulfates and parabens in my shampoo and my hair just felt weird, not with this one.


3. La Croix -  I discovered this a few years ago and when I realized it was Whole30 approved I was even more in love. Aside from the occasional coffee and tea I only drink water. That obviously gets boring at times so this sparkling water is heavenly.

4. Bare Minerals Lasting Line Eyeliner - here's another long time love of mine, again I've tried other brands but keep coming back to this one.

5. Mueller Spiralizer - zoodles, enough said. It makes my veggies other shapes than my regular chop and I often use it in place of pasta.

6. Tone It Up Workouts  - I get on kicks, that are more like ruts, with workouts. Up until the first week of January 2015 I was a die hard gym rat. I worked out daily, minus a year or so without a gym membership, since I was either 16 or 17. TIU workouts actually make me sore enough to rival being at the gym and their app offers a great weekly schedule that changes all the time, hence no more rut. Now to see if over the summer I can work away the breastfeeding weight that crept in.

7. True North Fitness Headbands - I bought these for 2 reasons 1) I need a hair fix for the 4:45 AM field trip tomorrow and 2) my baby bangs are crazy when I workout. Plus these are insanely cute and make you look a lot more put together than a regular headband or just a pony tail.

8. Fitbit Flex - I had an Ultra for several years before it broke and Jeremy got me a Flex for our anniversary about 3 years ago. I wear it All. The. Time. If you don't wear a fitness tracker I suggest you look into one, Fitbit has great lower cost items as well as some higher end trackers, as far as price goes. It's a good indicator of how much I've moved around vs. how much I thought I moved around.

9. GT Synergy Kombucha - I guess I started drinking Kombucha right after we got married and I've been obsessed ever since. Mainly due to the probiotic cultures, I'm a die hard probiotic person. That and Bullet Proof Bone broth are my top 2 gut drinks of all time. Especially if you're lactose intolerant and still want the benefits of yogurt cultures.

10. Maybelline The Blushed Nudes Palette - After using their Nudes for a year I found the Blushed, y'all, put down the expensive eye shadow and get this stuff. I wish there were more matte colors, but for the price it's perfect.

Alright, it's officially baby bedtime so I'm out for the day. He's currently melting down next to me! 

Weekend Recap

The week got away from me, or more like the lack of sleep got the best of my free time. 

This non-napping mama took two naps this week. I'm pretty positive this has been the worst sleep regression to date. Or I'm so exhausted I can't remember the others. 


One day this week I took a banana and my beloved Maranatha Maple Almond Butter as a snack, holy smokes it was amazing. Like I questioned why any meal included any other food. 


Harrison has been sleeping so poorly at night that he (after also refusing to nap after we got off work) fell asleep in the stroller. This also hasn't happened since the unable to roll over days. 

Since he started walking already, I'm thinking this regression has to do with 1 year molars and vocabulary acquisition. I told Jeremy last night though that as bad as it's been surely he will be fluent in French and have all his teeth by this Friday. 


I totally forgot about this breakfast, it use to be a favorite of mine, so I thought I'd share it just to make sure I remembered it. It's just a container of plain Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup frozen mixed berries, 2 tbsp of chopped nuts, and a drizzle of honey. 


Little Mister thinks he is so grown now that he can walk. While I brushed my teeth the past two days I've held him and handed him an extra tooth brush, he just scrubs away like he knows what he's doing. It's about the cutest thing ever. 


You could possibly peg me as one of two types of people based on this picture. 1. being that I could totally care less about Mother's Day and think people make too big of a deal out of that sort of thing. And 2. is that I'll use any excuse to grill a ribeye. 

If you guessed both, then you're right. I told Jeremy to skip the card and any present and just get steaks. 


I finally got some new shoes, probably long overdue since the other pair was about 3 years old. It's my first time with Under Armour and I have to say that so far they are pretty comfy. 

That's all folks, half because I've run out of things to say and half because I can hear that Harrison woke up. 

Meal Pinning Monday

There aren't a lot of pins this week since most of them are Tone It Up recipes, but I still put a pretty good idea of what the meals are on the list. 



[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Monday - Honey Lime Chicken with Quinoa Stir Fry and Cabbage (all links)

Tuesday - Grilled Chicken with Roasted Broccoli, Slivered Almonds, and Dresssing

Wednesday - leftovers

Thursday - Stuffed Bell Peppers

Friday - leftovers

Saturday - Grilled Chicken with Cauliflower Poppers


Sunday - So it's Mother's Day and I just remembered because a friend told me... Jeremy will likely grill steaks.