Thursday, October 27, 2011

Linguine A'la Brianne

Alright, so that's not the real name of this dish but in the Goode house it is. Super cheap and easy, and feeds a large family.

1 package linguine noodles
1 package diced ham
1 bottle Alfredo sauce
1 green bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
1 package croutons
Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta as directed on package. Slice bell peppers and saute over a little bit of olive oil (don't overcook or they will because soggy in the oven. After draining the pasta, mix with Alfredo sauce, half of the ham and half of the croutons, in a greased casserole dish. Sprinkle top with remaining ham and croutons, followed by Parmesan cheese and bell peppers. Cook in the oven at 350 for 15 minutes.

I omit the bell peppers because we aren't very big into peppers, but Matt loves this stuff... he has even been known to eat the left overs cold!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Let Go and Let God

Matt and I have been "not trying but not preventing" getting pregnant since earlier this year. We have gone back and forth on whether we would like to add to our family or not. Then when the tragedy of losing our niece happened earlier this fall, we realized how precious life really is and that we do not want to prevent any blessings God has in store for us. We knew then that we want more children, and not just one more. Those of you who know me, know that when something as big as adding to our family is decided, it tends to consume me! But then my heart was torn... I didn't want to cause grief to my still mourning sister by announcing that we were seriously trying. My head was saying "you can't do this right now" and my heart was saying "I really want to grow our family". I was constantly looking at the calendar, stressing. We have to get pregnant this, this or this month, or we will have to stop trying for a few months because I don't want to be due on Desi's birthday or due date... it wouldn't be fair to Desi or the other baby. I would call my best friend, who lives 20 hours away, crying, asking for prayer, asking for reassurance. Finally I realized that I was wearing myself out for nothing.

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:34

Not only does God call me not to worry, but also to have faith in His timing.

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

So I have had to let go of my controlling attitude, and let God do what He wants for our life. I need to love on the two children I already have and continue to pray for Meagan and Derrick. God knows not only when Matt and I will be ready to welcome a new baby, but also when Meagan will be ready. And with that my heart and mind are at peace.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Pulled Pork Loin

OK, so my cousin asked for more recipes and I was going to post a few last week but I was out with a cold/flu thing... we even missed dance class because of it! So here I am today trying to fill the order for easy, delicious dinners. I just winged it with this newest one. I bought a HUGE pork loin a Sam's club and cut it into four chunks. When that day came where we had been eating chicken in some fashion all week and needed to change things up, I thawed a loin only to discover Matt wasn't in the mood for pork chops, so I got creative :).

1 lb. Pork loin trimmed of excess fat
2 tbs veggie or olive oil
garlic salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup chicken  broth
1 cup juice (apple or grape work best)
1to 2 cups BBQ sauce

Heat oil in skillet over medium high heat. Rub loin with seasonings. Brown in skillet on each side for about 3 minutes, you want to lightly crisp the outside to lock in flavor. Remove from heat and place in crock-pot. Top with brown sugar, broth and juice. You can cook it at high heat for 3-4 hours or on medium heat all day while you are at work (6-8 hours). Add BBQ sauce 30 minutes before serving. remove the loin from the pot and shred in a bowl or platter. Top with some of the juices. serve on a bun or baked potato.

Both time I have made this we have been out of juice so I used Diet Dr Pepper, don't you judge me ;). So yummy and makes more than enough food for our little family of four. Sorry, when its a Kelli original recipe you dont get very detailed meaurements on the spices.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Free Halloween Wreath

We got a cool snap this weekend here in Houston, it's finally feeling more like fall. According to the Weather channel it won't be around much longer, so I decided to decorate a bit for Halloween. I'm not super big into All Hallows Eve, but it's a fun thing to do with the kids so I tried to spruce things up without spending any money, at all! This is what I came up with...
I managed to scrounge up some left over pumpkins from last year, feather boas from my "Little Diva" baby shower supply box, a wire hanger, purple tulle from making tutu's and plumbing insulation from last winter.

I molded the wire hanger into a circle and wrapped my insulation around it to give more girth to it. Next I hot glued the boa around the "wreath form", I used 4 six-foot long pieces.

That's when Brooke realized I had the camera out...

and had to start posing...

Boy am I in trouble. Back to the project, I painted the pumpkins with a black base coat and then metallic purple. I clustered them off to the right side. Made a tulle bow to top it off, and voila!

I'm thinking I will probably scale back the bow a bit... it swallows the wreath.
We might make little ghosts to hang from the trees out front, still not sure. I guess it depends on how much time and supplies I can pull together. I hope you enjoyed my completely free wreath! Yay, I actually got something up before the day of!

Weekend Bloggy Reading

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Playing Catch-up: Day 3

Just in case you were thinking that I am playing favorites because almost all of my pictures are of Brooke, this is what I get from Maddux when the camera is on him...
The first one is pretty good

Then there are about 5 or 6 of these

Then I get a big "stop mom!", from him and the camera is turned off.
But, I still love this little man more than words can express. It is so true what they say about the special relationships between a mom and her son, its inexplicable. If you have a son then you probably know what I mean, you can't describe it but it is just something special. Matt always say that if God blesses us with another child he would like another girl (as would Brooke, she is always asking for a sister). I on the other hand would love another cuddly boy. Maddux likes being the baby so he doesn't want any little brothers or sisters. Like I said before, I am learning to just embrace my blessings as they come and not focus on the what ifs.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Playing Catch-up, Day 2

We have been thinking about putting Brooke in Pre-school for a while but it just never worked out.Even with dance providing a social outlet, I needed to find better teachable opportunities. We needed to add a little bit of structure to our day. So I decided to order some home school material to work on together.We picked Mother Goose Time because it comes with everything you need; lesson plans, craft supplies, even decorations for your "classroom"! I haven't mastered the everyday thing but it is nice to pull out crafts on rainy days that are too hot to play outside. Here are pics from our first day of school.
Brooke and Maddux making their name tags

I did it mommy!

Brooke showing out while their puppets dry.

Like I said before, forever posing!!!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Playing Catch-Up, Day 1

As I have been flipping through my picasa account I realized there are so many things I haven't gotten to share. Since I am returning to my roots, I figured it's time to catch everybody up! After all, you guys are probably the only ones interested in how things are going in the Ham house! So Day 1 is dance class! Brooke started at the end of August and absolutely LOVES it. These pictures are from her first day.

All ready to go!


Silly Pose

Maddux thinking, "can't we just go already!"

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Where are my priorities??

It was a year ago this month that I decided I was going to try to branch off and become a "professional blogger". I wanted so badly to be recognized for doing something well. I wanted to have 10,000 followers, be asked to visit conventions and test new products. I just wanted to be somebody important. Well it quickly became apparent that I am not good at blogging regularly or coming up with new stuff to talk about. Professional blogger would not be on my resume.

After the holidays passed all I could think about was how badly I wanted to go to college and get a degree so I could start working. I prayed for almost a full year for God to show me what to do. Which leads me to 6 weeks ago... a family friend mentioned I should start an event planning business. I thought, this is God giving me the go ahead to start working, woo hoo. I took on two volunteer jobs and lined up a paying gig. I have been focusing all of my attention on these three things, day and night it has consumed me.

Recently, in the wake of our families loss, I have been feeling this overwhelming emotion of guilt. I have not been counting my blessings, I have not been a good steward of the gifts God has given me. My children have been living off of cereal and pb&j. I cut out the only time Matt and I had together most days because I needed to get research done or send out a quick e-mail. I have been tired and short tempered. Most of all I have been confused. I was so sure I was doing the right thing, I was so sure I was in God's will. I was enjoying the adult interaction... why does it feel so "off"??? This evening I read through some of my old posts on "This Little Piggy", a woman after God's own heart, fully devoted to her husband and children. A woman who's hearts desire was to make a welcoming, peaceful, warm home for her family... Where has that woman gone??? As soon as I started trying to get attention from the outside world, I lost track of the most important things in life. I put the people who love me most, and I love most, on the back burner. There is so much shame in my heart that it is hard to even write this in words. So here I return, to my safe place... my only followers are family and friends, asking for prayer. Was God just trying to remind me where my place is at this season of life??

Many Faces of Brooke

"Sons are a heritage from the Lord,Children a reward from Him."
Psalm 127:3

I often hear that Brooke is me made over. She is my heritage, she is my reward from God. What a blessing to be her mom! She always knows how to make her momma smile. Every time I whip out the camera she has a pose down...