Sunday, February 26, 2012

Top 10

1. My child whistled this morning, on purpose. I can't even whistle. My. kid. is. a. genius.

2. Bradley Cooper. Lose the mustache. Please. Thanks.

3. Got a fancy pair of shoes today for a special wedding this weekend! I can't wait to see Brittany in all her bridal glory!

4. Big week for Hayes. He started using a "big boy" sippee cup. He started drinking cow's milk. He hasn't used a paci at bedtime at all this week. He is growing up so fast!

5. I made another fun cricut project this week! I can't wait to share pictures! That machine is just too much fun.

6. Got some new makeup this week. Matte Mousse by Maybelline. I didn't even know matte was an option for makeup. I love all things matte. Matte pictures. Matte paint. And now, matte makeup.

7. My parents celebrated the big 30th wedding anniversary this past week! I am so thankful to have such a wonderful example of marriage in my life. My dad also turned 40 this week. So weird that he was 10 when he got married, right? ;)

8. Almost bought a blazer today, but I couldn't find a fit/style that I loved. I am so on the hunt for one now.

9. I'm not very good at wearing lipstick. I am a lipgloss girl. But I feel I need to wear lipstick this weekend. Now what shade should I pick? Ahhh.....too many options. I need a lipstick consultant.

10. This week, let's pray for dementia awareness to spread across this country like a wildfire. For caregivers to truly know all of their options. For facilities and communities who offer dementia care to strive to offer the highest standard of care. For people to stop thinking so negatively about this disease and see the true potential someone with dementia has.

Friday, February 24, 2012

To suffer, or not to suffer....

What is suffering? Who gets to decide if someone is in a state of suffering? Is that decision up to the "sufferer"?

If you know me, you know I am passionate about being a dementia advocate. This was such an exciting week for our community. I mentioned the distinction we received earlier this week from Dementia Care Specialists. I love everything this company stands for. I was able to meet Kim Warchol, president of DCS, this week. She is an amazing person and left me inspired. My partner in crime (Terra) and I have some big plans up our sleeves for the future now! And I have now distracted myself...back to my thoughts for this evening.

A statement we hear far too often is "She/He is suffering from dementia." When I began my journey with dementia, my eyes were opened to the negativity of this statement. This leads me to ask, again, what is suffering? And who makes that call? I don't think I am naive. I know that dementia is no walk in the park. I know that loved ones have their hearts broken by this disease. But does that really constitute the use of the word suffering? I suppose everyone is entitled to their own opinions. Luckily, this happens to be my I will share my opinion. I think the definition of "quality of life" is something that is constantly evolving for every person. When I was young, brown sugar cinnamon pop-tarts and nick at nite kept me happy. Things have certainly changed now, and I am sure they will continue to.

Now let me share a few stories...

T loves her baby doll. To her, that doll is as real as Hayes is to me. It is so clear that she loves being a mommy. Her baby allows her to be a mommy every single day. Think she's suffering? The smile on her face says otherwise.

J could spend all day drawing pictures. Hand her a stack of paper and colored pencils and she is happy as a lark. Her specialty is profiles, and you never know what special accessory the people she draws will have. If you walk by, she is happy to show you her large stack of drawings, each one signed by the artist herself. Suffering? Heck no.

Walk up to A and give her a big hug. Know what you will hear? "I love you so much. You are my bestest girl." Start singing "you are my sunshine" and you will hear her belt happiness at the top of her lungs.

Sweet B. He loves the ladies. I have a feeling he has always been a hopeless romantic. I say "Hiya handsome." He says "Hi beautiful." And I get a kiss on the hand. And a toothless grin. I can always count on it.

Dementia does not have to equal suffering. Dementia may change the definition of happiness or quality of life for a person. But it does not automatically result in suffering. Give someone with dementia a chance to live to their potential. Allow them to do things that make them happy. Show them love and compassion and patience. That doesn't sound like suffering to me.

If we change our thinking from a negative "suffering" perspective to a positive "thriving" one, then we can help people with dementia live a fulfilling life.

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Top 10!

1. First birthday bash - round 1 is over. It was amazing and perfect. Round 2 is in 2 weeks! We are excited!

2. Yes, that means I will be in Louisiana in 2 weeks!!! It will be a fun-filled weekend of wedding happiness, catching up with friends and family, and birthday madness. And crawfish. We can't wait!

3. On the menu for this week....a cast iron pizza and shrimp and corn soup. Hope they turn out good!

4. I am loving Smash...the new TV show. I am a sucker for musicals:)

5. You should check out my sister's valentine post. Her son will be so mad at her when he is older, but the pictures are adorable!

6. If I had a quarter for every time someone asked when we were going to have baby #2 this week, I could buy a new outfit from Gap. Hayes didn't ask for a sibling for his birthday, so he isn't getting one.

7. I am so ready for the new season of Mad Men to start. I need Don Draper back in my life.

8. I recently bought a Yankee Candle in Autumn Wreath. It reminds me of Jeanna's mom's house. I am so obsessed with it.

9. While I am typing this, Hayes is walking a balloon like a puppy. He is way too cute for words.

10. This is an exciting week for the community I work in. We are receiving recognition from Dementia Care Specialists for being a Distinguished Provider in Dementia Care. I have also received Dementia Capable Care Therapist Recognition. To obtain these awards, we had to go through an application process and complete required training. Dementia care is my passion and I am so excited for our community to receive this distinction!

Tasty Treats!

I had lots of fun "puppy" treats at the big party this weekend, but I wanted to have a few adult-friendly snacks as well. These were all a huge hit and easy to make!

{Man Dip Part 2}
(The original name is White Trash Dip, but I'm not a fan of that name)

I chose this dip because I knew the men there would appreciate a meat-y dip.

The original recipe came from here.

1lb bacon
2 cups shredded cheese
2 blocks cream cheese, softened
1 can chili
1 bunch green onions, chopped

Chop and cook your bacon. We always chop our bacon before we cook it. Makes for easier cooking! Stir all ingredients together. Pour into greased pie pan. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Done!

{Feta Dip}

The original recipe came from here. This dip was light and easy and amazing.

olive oil
1 lb feta, crumbled
1 bunch green onions, chopped
3 roma tomatoes, chopped
greek seasoning

This dip is best made/served on a large platter. Cover platter generously with olive oil. Throw on tomatoes, green onions, feta, and a couple tsp of greek seasoning. (I use Cavendar's seasoning.) Stir all ingredients around until combined. I served this dip with Triscuits. Enjoy!

{Heath Apple Dip}

This dip was served at a Superbowl party we went to this year. I ate some, then immediately found the person who made it so I could get the recipe.

2 blocks cream cheese, softened
6-9 tsp powdered sugar
heath bar, crumbled

Beat cream cheese and powdered sugar until blended and creamy. Spread onto a platter. Drizzle caramel over cream cheese and top with Heath bar crumbles. Surround dip with apple slices. *I bought a bag of heath crumbles, but didn't need near that much. You could probably get away with buying 1 heath bar and crumbling it yourself.

I didn't take pictures of these delicious dips, I was too busy entertaining. I had a lot of party details to finish the morning of, and these dips were so easy to throw together. I made the Feta Dip and Apple Dip while the Man Dip was baking!


Saturday, February 18, 2012

Hayes is 1!

I cannot believe my baby is 1. How is that possible?

We had a big party for Hayes today. The theme was "The Poky Little Puppy." Hayes loves all dogs he sees, so the theme was easy to pick. All the party guests signed a copy of "The Poky Little Puppy" with a special birthday message. The color scheme was green, yellow, and light blue. Ready for tons of pictures? Here goes!

Poky Little Puppy birthday banner

Puppy Treats table, complete with picket fence!

Flower centerpiece assembled by my Mother-in-law... with dog bones:)

This will only make sense to you if you have read the book...

Hayes's smash cake made by the fabulous Ele Bakery. Yes, it is in a personalized dog bowl.

"Water Bowl" (blue jello)

"Dog Bones" (soft pretzels)

"Puppy Chow" (coco puffs)

"Pup corn" (puff corn)

"Go Fetch!" (cake balls)

"Pup Cakes" (cupcakes)
Ele Bakery made these too!

Party Favors! " to a good home."

Hayes enjoying his Smash Cake!

Present time!

Playing with cousin Landy.

Such a handsome birthday boy!

I also had an adult foods table....I will share those recipes in a later post!

We had such a great time with friends and family celebrating Hayes's big day. Thanks to everyone who came!

Mommy and Daddy have had the best year of their lives thanks to you, Hayes. We love you so much!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Top 10

1. Hayes is all better. Gave his little virus to Mommy. Mommy is almost better. Whew.

2. Making dog bone pretzels. Get excited:)

3. My baby is turning 1 Friday. I'm already getting teary thinking about it.

4. My friend, Leah, posted about words she doesn't want her kids saying. I cringe at the thought of my child saying "butt" and "suck" along with other obvious words. Mommy and Daddy better make sure they are setting a good example.

5. I really really really want a real king cake. From New Orleans. I don't think it's gonna happen.

6. My bestest friend since 5th grade is getting married in like 3 weeks. I can't wait! Party time in Baton Rouge!

7. I was driving to work today and "Crossroads" came on the radio...followed by "Peaches and Cream." Nice.

8. I don't think Ry and I are exchanging Valentine's gifts this year. I say "think" because we haven't really talked about it. Last year, we celebrated Vday late due to the arrival of the cutest baby ever. Maybe we will do that again this year.

9. Finally watched The Help last night. I didn't cry. Maybe because I was also making high chair decorations for the big party this weekend so I wasn't totally focused on the movie. Movie was was better!

10. Pray for a special family member of mine who injured herself this weekend. You know who you are and I hope you feel better fast!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Never too old to need your mom...

This has been such a long week....or two weeks I guess. Last week, we had a sick Hayes. This week, Mommy is sick. It appears that Hayes shared his virus with me and I have been battling a crazy high fever since Tuesday. When I was driving myself to the doctor on Tuesday, I found myself wishing my mom was here to drive me to the doctor. I have a great husband who has taken over fixing supper and doing everything for Hayes. I have been able to focus on beating the fever and getting better (and sneaking to work when I can get away with it.) Even with a great husband, it still would be nice to have someone who only has to look after me this week.

Moral of the story: You are never too old to need your mom!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Culinary Jackpot

I so hit the culinary jackpot tonight. So, when I was done savoring every last bite of my delicious meal, I threw my plate in the sink, grabbed the computer, and started blogging about it.

Of course this came from Pinterest and this is actually a two recipe post. The first recipe is for Quinoa Mac n' Cheese. I have been trying to embrace this super grain known as Quinoa....and I finally found a recipe that I love! The original recipe came from this blog. I altered it a smidge.

{Quinoa Mac n' Cheese}


2 tsp olive oil
1 cup broccoli
1/4 cup green onions
1 1/2 cup dry quinoa
2 tsp garlic
3 cups water
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1 1/2 cups shredded cheese
bread crumbs
unsalted butter
seasoning salt
garlic powder

Here we go! Heat oil in a large skillet. Add broccoli and green onions. Saute for a few minutes, then cover and simmer for about 5 minutes. (I used frozen broccoli, it was all I had) Add quinoa and garlic. Cook over med heat for about 5 minutes. Add 3 cups water and seasonings. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for about 10 minutes or until most of the fluid is absorbed. Set aside for about 5 minutes. Whisk 2 eggs and milk together. Slowly add quinoa mixture and cheese into egg and milk mixture. Pour into a greased 9x13 dish. Top with breadcrumbs. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Dot with unsalted butter and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes.

Need some meat with your quinoa? Try this tasty recipe! It calls for chicken thighs, but you could use any meat. We used turkey thighs...they were on sale:) This dish came from this blog.

{Honey Spiced Glazed Turkey}


1 pkg chicken (or turkey) thighs or breasts
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp chipotle chili pepper
2 tsp paprika
2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup honey
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar

Mix all spices together. Spread out meat and cover in spices. Put under broiler for 5-7 minutes on each side. (May need to be adjusted based on meat and thickness of meat) Mix honey and apple cider vinegar. Pour over meat and broil another 5-7 minutes. It will get smoky! Enjoy this amazing, savory, spicy, sweet, tender dish.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Top 10!

1. It has been a rough week for my baby. Ear infection still raging, diagnosed with "hand, foot, mouth" disease (a no-fun virus with a rash and fever), and cut 4 teeth. Sweet Hayes needs to feel better soon! Someone has a birthday coming up...

2. Speaking of Hayes, I made him a meatloaf with ground turkey, bell pepper, celery, bread crumbs, and egg. Yum!

3. My cricut came in and I have already created amazing things with it. My focus right now is on Hayes's birthday party, but I can't wait to create pretties for my home!

4. Anyone watch "Reba"...the tv show? Remember the man who played her ex-husband? He looks an awfully lot like NFL commissioner, Roger Goodell. Google it.

5. My sister has a new blog. Pampers & Polaroids. She's only two posts in, but it is already very entertaining. She is quite the budding photographer.

6. The party favors for Hayes's party came in this week as did the invites! Is my baby really turning 1 on the 17th?

7. I love Baby Gap. You know what I love even more? Buying Baby Gap on sale. It's hard to find  boys clothes that are cute and good quality. Every time I get him a new piece from Baby Gap for super cheap, I feel like I have won a prize.

8. 3 words. TOMS Ballet Flats.

9. I love my job. But. If we became millionaires, I would quit my job and have babies. Lots of them. That would be my job. And I would love it.

10. I think our safety is something we can sometimes take for granted. Let's all pray this week for those who protect our safety, and for those who have their safety compromised.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Cobb Salad Love

I love a good salad. I don't typically love them during the winter. This winter has been anything but typical. The sun and "warm" temps have made me crave salads. So, we made a veggie run and enjoyed amazing salads tonight. I didn't take a picture of my beautiful creation. We were too busy feeding and bathing Hayes while making and eating our salads. I think this would classify as a easy weeknight meal!

Katie's Cobb Salad

fresh green lettuce
fresh tomato
hard boiled eggs
feta cheese crumbles
ranch dressing

Now here is where it gets complicated. Listen carefully:)

 I mashed up some of my avocado and mixed it in with my ranch. I tossed my lettuce in the dressing first and then added all the "toppings." I prefer doing it this way because my lettuce gets coated in dressing. It was delicious and filling!

Choose a night when you feel like doing little to no cooking to enjoy your own cobb salad!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Picture Time!

So as you all know, I am an aspiring mommy photographer. I have a semi-fancy camera, new camera lens, and Photoshop Lightroom. I am pretending like these things make me certified to take photographs of other people. My friend, Leah came out to our house a few months ago to take photos of our family. I was so excited to return the favor after Leah's newest addition to her family. Here are my very amateur attempts at photography. You can also check these out over at Leah's blog, Well Rounded.

 Real Life = using your baby's leg warmer to blow your toddler's nose.

I had so much fun spending time with Leah and her family. Thanks for being my test subjects in my photography journey!