February Beach Trip

February in Charleston means we go from ice to pollen in about 10 days flat. I’m definitely not complaining! It’s one of the many reasons I stayed here after college.

February is one of my favorite months. I am definitely sad to see the holidays, festivities, and delicious food go! But then I get super excited, because February brings my birthday, Valentine’s Day, and Stew’s birthday all in a row!! Plus, the end of February starts spring fever! The sun is shining and the days are getting longer. That makes me one happy momma! 

This spring and summer will be the best yet! Turner is so much fun, and I know he will love playing outside. For the past few days we’ve been playing in the yard and the street with his walker. This is his absolute favorite toy! He walks laps around the house all day. He even strolls up and down the street, in our yard, and in every neighbor’s yard with a giant grin on his face. He doesn’t care whose yard he trespasses in! Luckily, they all think it’s cute, for now. 

Today, since it was in the 70s, we took a little lunch break and had a picnic at the beach (one of the many benefits of working from home)!  I packed up our food, a blanket, and the walker because, let’s face it, that’s all we would really need!

After scarfing down his lunch, and a little bit of sand, Turner was ready to play!

He walked and crawled (because, let’s face it, I can get there much faster) all over the beach! He chased birds and screamed at the top of his lungs! He even found a few pretty seashells! He sure knows how to have a good time!



What a way to recharge my batteries for the rest of the day! A picnic with my munchkin is the best “reset” button I could ever push! It definitely got me even more excited for beach weather! Maybe this year I won’t have to be the “sand eating police” and we will just PLAY at the beach! Sending sunshine your way!!!

Chicken and Veggie Tots

I am on a mission to create clever ways to stuff my child FULL of vegetables! So far, so good. Here’s an amazing recipe that I can almost bet your finicky child will love!! You can call them whatever you want to appeal to your little one. But, rest assured, they are chock full of VEGGIES!! 
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They are a bit labor intensive, but the recipe makes about a million so they last for quite a while! I make about 40 and freeze the majority. Turner eats 4 or 5 in one sitting, so I just take out what I know I’ll need and pop them in an airtight container in the fridge the night before!

I start by prepping all of the veggies. In a food processor, I shred the carrots. I leave half of the carrots in the food processor, and set remaining carrots aside. Then, I dice the apple, onion, celery, and red pepper. I set the veggies aside.

Then, I cut the chicken breast into chunks and add them to the carrots in the food processor fitted with blade attachment. I pulse 4 times to break the chicken into small pieces.

In a nonstick skillet over medium heat, I sauté half the onion until it softens, about two minutes. I add half the shredded carrot, and all of the red pepper, apple, kale (or spinach), and celery to the sautéed onions. I season with 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, and 1/4 tsp dried thyme. I sautée for another 2-3 minutes until veggies soften. I turn the heat off and set that mixture aside to cool.

Meanwhile, I add the remaining raw onion to the food processor. Pulse to combine, about four times.

Then, I add the sautéed veggies to the food processor. I pulse to combine, about 10 times, scraping down the sides with a spatula.

Finally, I add the egg and breadcrumbs. I pulse to combine. Then it’s time to form the meatballs!! I use a mini ice cream scoop to make the balls and drop them onto my oiled skillet.

I cook them for about 3 minutes per side. I turn them and make sure to cook all sides until browned and cooked through. This process takes about 10-15 minutes. I cook them in batches, making sure to coat the pan with oil for each batch! Then it’s time to dig in!



As you can tell, Turner is a HUGE fan of these babies! Little does he know, he’s getting his veggies in with each and every bite!

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Turner’s First Haircut

I was always afraid of going for Turner’s first haircut. I had visions of mass hysteria and scissors flying. But, the real danger was ME trying to cut his hair. I have attempted a little trimming before his bath, but he never sat still enough to get a good cut. I love the shaggy look, but once his hair got past his eyeballs, it was time to call in the professionals!

So, we found the greatest place, right near us, called Kidz Kutz! Ms. Yolanda was so friendly and patient! She put spongebob on the TV (which he’s never watched) and we popped Turner in his little race car seat. He was super excited at first!

Then, I took a few steps away, and the waterworks started. Ms. Yolanda put his little poncho on and started cutting. I had to feed him veggie straws non-stop to keep his sobs at bay. He was ok as long as I was feeding him (story of my life). He even started to get pretty into it towards the end. He was watching her every move in the mirror.


All in all, it was a success! Ms. Yolanda even put the first clipping of his hair into a little plastic baggy! Now, if only I knew where I put it…
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Turner is growing into such a big boy right before our eyes! We keep hitting these huge milestones! And every one of them is exciting!

Busy Bee

I’m still here!! I didn’t even realize how much time has passed since my last post! I have been so insanely busy with work. I just did a living social deal for our rental business, which is amazing, but it means my phone doesn’t stop ringing!

Working from home is an absolute blessing, but it also is so easy to overwork since there are not set “start” and “end” times! I’m definitely one of those people who needs to get my never-ending to-do list finished or I’m completely stressed. But it hit me on Valentine’s Day, that I have not been present in anything I do lately! I have been going twenty different directions at once! So, I made a change. I changed my outgoing voicemail so people know my “work hours”. That has already been a huge relief! Now I don’t feel like I’m letting anyone down when I don’t call them back within 30 seconds! It also means I can make time to be wholly present for Turner and Stew! That being said, I absolutely LOVE working and I love having checklists and staying busy. But I need to allow myself time for ME and for my family so I stay sane! Mission accomplished.

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On to more exciting news. Stew, Turner, and I celebrated Valentine’s Day Friday night. Stew and I have been making fondue on Valentine’s Day for the past 8 years. Last year, Turner was only 3 months old, so he couldn’t partake in the meal. This year he was ready to chow down!! We made buffalo chicken bites, celery, grapes, red peppers, and bread with a blue cheese fondue. For dessert, I made a chocolate fondue (omitted espresso, added cinnamon, used whole milk instead of heavy cream) with strawberry fro-yo balls, strawberries, pretzels, and apples. 

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It was so delicious and even more special with Turner there! Every holiday has something new to offer with this little love muffin in our lives. We feel so lucky to have him! Thanks for visiting, and we hope you have a great week!!

 

Carrot Almond Butter Snack Bites

I found a delicious recipe months ago that I’ve been meaning to try. I finally had some time to test recipes this morning and came up with a little spin on these Carrot Almond Butter Bites. I kept it pretty similar. I just changed up a few ingredients and blended it up in the food processor so it’s extra “toddler friendly”. 


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Another Great Emily-Bowl

My friend asked why I couldn’t come to her Superbowl party and I said, “because it’s Emily-bowl”. She needed an explanation. So, for those of you who would also like one, here is last year’s Emily-bowl!

This year was the most exciting celebration yet! The Superbowl didn’t actually start until past our bedtime 7, so it was a full-on birthday party! The food was amazing, but the family was even better! We went to Nanny and Pops’s house for the celebration. They always throw a mean party. Nanny worked so hard to make a delicious meal. And my mom always thinks of the sweetest details to make me feel special…

Turner had an absolute blast and was making everyone laugh, as usual (sorry for the blurry pic, but this was too cute not to share)!



My mom made a delicious cake for me too. I’m a lucky girl! Nothing like great family and delicious food to make a girl feel special!




Business Launch Event

This past Friday was my Business Launch Event for Rodan & Fields. I already work full time (from home) AND take care of Turner. But, when I learned that the dermatologists who created Proactiv created an anti-aging line, I had to be a part of it! So this is just an easy way to earn some extra spending money without much effort!

We’re not a “party” company. But, every new consultant has a “Launch Event” to share the business. I chose to invite a few girlfriends over to share my business venture and play with our products! My theme was “Leave the Aging to Wine & Cheese”. Cute, right!? (A 5X7 digital file of my chalkboard design is available on Etsy).
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It was such a fun night! I felt so supported and loved by my friends. It was all about the wine, cheese, and skincare products!!




The girls ended up staying here till after 11! My eyes haven’t seen that time for years!! Stew even got to go hang out with one of his friends! It was a great way to send January off on a positive note! Here’s to new adventures and to being social!! Happy Sunday!