Monday, March 30, 2009

Crockpot Creamy Chicken and Blackbeans

I love the crock pot but am not big on recipes where all you do is open cans, bags or boxes and dump. There are usually way too many additives and preservatives in those products. However, here is a really good "dumping" recipe that doesn't include all of the yucky stuff!!

4-5 free-range boneless chicken breasts
1 can black beans (or I use 1.5 cups of previously soaked, cooked then frozen black beans)
1 bag frozen organic corn
1 jar organic salsa
1 package organic cream cheese

1. Put chicken breasts into crock-pot
2. Add black beans, salsa, and corn
3. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or low 6-8 hours
4. Add cream cheese and let sit for about 1/2 hour

"Soaked" Pancakes

I said I would be posting about cooking and nutrition every now and then. So, when a friend requested a few recipes, I thought it would be another great opportunity to blog about bread baking.

A small nutritional lesson on grains. Just because you have switched from white flour to whole grain flour does not mean that you are getting all of the nutritional value. In fact you may also experience new problems with digestion. This is because whole grains contain phytic acid in the bran of the grain. Phytic acid combines with key minerals, especially calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and zinc and prevents their absorption in the intestinal tract. Soaking, fermenting or sprouting the grain before cooking or baking will neutralize a large portion of the phytic acid, releasing these nutrients for absorption. This process allows enzymes, lactobacilli and other helpful organisms to not only neutralize the phytic acid, but also to break down complex starches and difficult-to-digest proteins including gluten.

That is how Sue Gregg explains it in her Whole Grain Baking Cookbook. And the following is her blender batter pancake recipe. You can use different combinations of grains and cultured milk but the following is the best combination I have found so far.

Stage 1:
1. Place in blender, blend at highest speed for 3-5 minutes, cover blender and let stand at room temperature 12-24 hours (so I do this the morning or night before wanting to make the pancakes) Put the ingredients in the blender in the following order:

  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk

  • 2 tbs melted butter

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1 cup brown rice

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats

Stage 2

1. preheat griddle on medium high

2. Just before baking, add egg and blend on highest speed 1-3 minutes

3. Stir in:

  • 2 Tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 Tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 Tsp salt

There are many many ways to prepare "soaked" breads, muffins and pancakes. In this recipe you soak the grain overnight before baking. You can also soak and sprout a large amount of grains (I mainly use spelt) then store them in your refrigerator then grind then you can just grind the grain into flour right before using. This can all sound very intimidating, but believe me once you get the hang of it and in the habit of doing it, it is very simple and takes little time. Believe me..with 2 little ones I know how precious time can be!!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Those darn teeth!

So Jack has been crying for about 2 weeks now. Seems like ALL THE TIME!! He cried for a week then got his first tooth. Had 1 happy day then bam started all over again! So I hope this tooth comes through soon! He has a fever today. I'm not a believer in giving tylenol to I am trying all sorts of homeopathic remedies...hope I find one that works for him! Poor little guy!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Not a good blogger

So my goal with this blog is to make a daily entry that will capture those little moments with the kids so that they are not lost all too soon. So...why don't I always accomlish this goal?? Look who my helpers are...

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Dinosaur Museum

Yesterday I took the kids to the Cleveland Natural Science Museum. We met up with a few other moms, there were 3 moms and 9 kids! I told Soraya first thing in the morning that we were going to go. I started prepping her because in order to go she had to take her nap an hour earlier than normal and I didn't want her to be scared of the huge dinosaurs. We've been scared of a lot of things lately. So I explained how we were going to go see really big dinosaur bones. She knew what dinosaurs were from the toys in Jack's room. Her first question was "they going to get me?" I said no, they dont move. They are stuck. "Oh, ok" she said. So she took her nap an hour early without hesitation. I had a hard time waking her up though. I rubbed her arm and took her binkie and she opened her eyes, grabbed her binkie and rolled over and put her blankie over her head. It was pretty cute. So I rubbed her leg and she turned over and looked at me and smiled and said "Hi mommy." So we were off to the museum. Only a 40 minute car ride. Jack napped and Soraya watched Thomas the Train on her little dvd player. We got to the museum and played outside on the big dinosaur for about 30 minutes then we went inside. Looked at some dinosaurs and some taxidermy then we went out to the outdoor section that had some rescued animals in what was supposed to be as close to their natural habitat as possible. There were fox, deer, lots of different birds and some otters. Soraya said the otters "kinda scared her a little bit." After that we headed back in to the basement where there is a "discovery zone" for kids to play with different science-y toys. Then it was off to the planetarium before heading home. It was a fun trip and I'm looking forward hitting up some more of the Cleveland museums. I didn't take my camera, I thought juggling two kids would be enough but I think I will try to take it next time.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Eat Fat to Lose Fat

Now THIS is what I've been talking about...

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Facebook Addict

So I didn't realize I was addicted to facebook until it was taken away from me a week ago. I have not been able to use it since last Tuesday and I'm starting to feel out of touch!! I have NO idea what happened. I need to go to the library and see if it works on a different computer. Ours is on its last I'm really hoping it is the computer's fault. We have a new laptop coming our way...should hopefully be shipped so...and I hope that will solve the problem! So I will hopefully be back soon. Rebecca...i really do want to be your friend! I can see the request...i just can't click on it!!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Thanks Ben!

I would like to thank Ben Farmer for teaching Soraya to balance a spoon on her nose. She definitly did it this morning with a spoon full of yogurt!!

My Baby Boy

I wish I could capture Jack's newborn smell in a's fading fast! It's amazing how they all have their individual smell. I could pick Jack out of a a lineup blindfolded anyday. I know this because I was smelling Henry the otherday and couldn't smell anything. But Jack....the most beautiful smell in the world!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Small World Communications

Well, I haven't posted lately because I have been a bit tied up. I just picked up a semi-parttime job. My friend's mother needed some help with her communications company, and my friend recommended me. It is a wonderful arrangement as I can do 99% of the work from home! It is exactly what I've been looking for! I am very excited about it! And being a bit busier helps to keep me in a better mood :) And as Chad says, when mommy is in a bad mood the whole family is in a bad mood :) So everytime I sit down at the computer I think "Well, I guess I should do work and get paid for sitting here instead of just goofing around on the computer like usual." Well...speaking of...I guess I better clock in while I have 2 sleepers!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Looking Good

Jack is lookin good! I just can't belive the difference the surgery made. And his eyes are working as a team now! So excited for the little guy. I keep saying, "Jack, you look so good buddy...not that looks matter...but you look great!!

Here are some pictures from yesterday, so this is two days after surgery:

Here is a picture from today, so 3 days after surgery:

As you can tell...this kid LOVES his jumper...he is in it for hours everyday!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Jack's new eyes

He is looking good!!

Yesterday was a long day. We left home at 6:40 am to check in at the cleveland clinic by 8. We were called back to pre-op by 9. Met with the doc and anesthesiologist by 9:45 and Chad was carrying him back to the surgery room by 10:20. The doctor came out to tell us everything went as planned around 11:10 and we got to go back and see him by 11:30! It was so sad seeing him laying in his crib/hospital bed in his hospital gown. He was sleeping but his eyes were all swollen and kind of bloody. He woke up pretty quickly after we walked in and was pretty upset so I picked him up and held him for about 2 hours while he slept. At 1:30 he woke up and was finally ready to eat for the first time since 4 am. The nurse was about to send us home then he spiked a temp. His little face was so red. So she gave him a bit of motrin and it went down so we were safe to head home around 2:30. Little guy slept all the way home, we got there around 3:30. He then had to show off his eyes to grandma and grandpa wingfield before they left. He was then ready to eat and take another nap. He slept about 40 minutes then played pretty happily for about an hour until he was ready to go to bed. So he ate again and was in bed by 6 for the night! He woke up a few extra times during the night but still slept until 6:40 this morning. He has been acting pretty close to normal all day. Just a little extra fussy. Big thanks to Willow's mom for taking Soraya for a few hours today so that I can give Jack the extra attention he is wanting.

His eyes are looking better and better as the day goes! It is amazing how they have transformed. I just keep looking him over as he just looks so different to me!

Day of surgery

Morning the day after surgery

Afternoon the day after surgery

Monday, March 2, 2009

Jack's surgery

I just wanted everyone to konw that Jack's surgery went well and as planned. He is home recovering now. I will give more details and post a photo later! Thanks for all of your thoughts and prayers!