Monday, August 30, 2010

As promised: Bread Machine Cinnamon Rolls

These are magical. If you have a bread machine, dust it off, clean it out and make yourself some of these babies.


Bread Machine Cinnamon Rolls

Dough:
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons warm milk
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 egg, lightly beaten plus 2 egg whites
1/2 cup sugar
4 cups flour (Add a bit more if dough seems too wet after first few minutes of kneading in the bread machine.)
1 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons bread machine yeast

Filling
2 tablespoons butter
2/3 cup brown sugar mixed with 1 tablespoon cinnamon
* I doubled the brown sugar/cinnamon part and it was delicious

Icing:
1 teaspoon milk
1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
4 tablespoons (or less) butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla

Put the dough ingredients in the bread machine in the order listed and run on the dough cycle. After the dough cycle is finished, roll the dough into a large rectangle and spread it with 2 Tablespoons melted butter and 2/3 cup brown sugar mixed with 1 Tablespoon cinnamon.

Roll up and cut into 10-15 rolls and place in two greased round cake pans. Bake at 325 degrees for 20 minutes or until browned. Spread the icing on as soon as they come out of the oven.

**You can also cover the unbaked rolls with plastic wrap, stick them in the refrigerator overnight, and then bake in the morning. This actually makes GIGANTIC rolls if you do the night before method, so you might want to make the rolls a bit smaller if you do this. Or just loosen your belt or put on some maternity pants.

**I have also made the frosting with cream cheese (1/3 less fat, since we are dieting....just kidding) instead of butter and it was EVEN BETTER

ENJOY!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

America's cutest home videos

Got an ailment? Had a bad day? Need a smile in your life?

Check out the video I took of Rylan watching America's Funniest Home Videos. I know that the last thing you should do after letting your child stand crazy close to a 40 inch TV is get out the camera and video tape the event, but you'll understand when you see the cuteness. After the first 10 seconds or so, you can click off, he goes back to a serious, pantsless TV watcher.

video

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Playdate fun: long long long post

I have dreams of being an awesome blogger. One that can put a paragraph and a picture together in a few seconds and voila! Blog at least every other day. You'll notice, I go in spurts. The honest reason is because I am L-A-Z-Y about downloading pics to the computer. I don't know why. You know how you don't mind unstacking the dishwasher, but you hate folding clothes? Or you love to cook, but hate to do dishes? Or dusting isn't so bad, but you'd rather get a root canal than go through your mail and pay bills? Or is it just me? Anyway, downloading pics, like one of the easiest things to do, seems to be under my folding clothes, dishes, mail and bills, section. So if you see a nice run of blogs, every day or every other day. You can bet your life savings, that I had recently downloaded a month of pics at once.

We have also been having a little bit of what I'm afraid is the Terrible 21 months. Rylan has pretty much dropped all words but "MOMMY!" and "NO!" lately. This led me to go have his ears checked, just in case his ear tubes were clogged and I was blaming his terrible two-ness on his wordlessness. All is well in the ear drums. Turns out, Ry has other things on his mind then talking right now. He babbles constantly. And he's added an "OH" to all his "no's." He walks/runs around yelling "OH NO!" quite a lot these days. We had some days where I didn't know whether to call time-out his new home, or tackle him, but it seems (knock on large piece of wood) that we've reached the calm AFTER the storm. We had a great weekend with hardly any time-outs, and I've had 2 good days this week of my sweet, loving kiddo back. He actually went with me to Burlington Coat Factory, Olive Garden, and Sam's yesterday with nary a scream, bellow, or holler. There was a rather large 4 berry sundae at Sam's that we shared, might have helped.

On another subject we are 33 weeks pregnant. Almost 34. And guess who isn't on bedrest for premature labor???? ME ME ME!!!!! I still have about 947 contractions a day. My pubic bones have prematurely split (something that is supposed to happen during labor, not 8 weeks early) and I have a slight limp, but hey beggars cannot be choosers (or preggars cannot be choosers?). As long as my cervix (men stop reading) remains closed, I get to play, and drive, and be a (semi) helpful wife and mother. And that means the world to me.

On a cuter subject, Ry and I have had some awesome playdates. I seriously love BOTH of my playgroups. In fact we went to two last week AND hosted one here at the house. The one in East End (MOPS-Mother of Preschoolers) is kind of on hiatus right now, but they do have monthly get togethers. We did go to a wonderful get-together at the church that hosts MOPS. Instead of their planned playground trip (read: hot, miserable and last time Rylan got BIT), they opened their church gym, threw about 10 balls in there, blew up a big bounce house and a little bounce house, and had animal cracker yumminess. Rylan ran and ran and ran. With a smile the whole time. There are moments, lots of moments, that I wonder if I'm any good at this Stay-at-home thing. Then I take him to this playdate and watch him run in pure bliss, and I'm glad I did. I regret that I have no pics though. You see, they didn't have chairs for the moms. So I sat on the floor. And if you've ever been 32 weeks pregnant, you know that getting up off the floor makes you look like a turtle that has flipped on its shell. All arms and legs in the air grasping. So, I just stayed put and watched my boy run with wild abandon.

We went to my new friend Ashley's house for a breakfast playdate. It was really called Muffin Monday, but I cheated and made it cinnamon roll Monday. I have discovered a cinnamon roll recipe that I can use my bread machine with. I do believe their official name is Bread Machine Cinnamon Rolls. They are so simple and turn out good everytime. I'll post the recipe in another post, so it doesn't get lost with all my future pics.

ANYWAY, Ashley is the hostess with the mostest and her house was so fun that we played and played and played, until like 3pm when the kids were all but begging for a nap. She even let Rylan And Lily get in her daughter's crib and have a jumping good time AND let them suck on her daughter's extra paceys. Rylan and his friend Lily are going through a 21month old pacey adoration phase. They'll get past it.
(Remember my note about being lazy and not downloading pics? This particular day, I was too lazy to actually get my camara out, so these photos come to you, courtesy of Michelle, master of all that is quick blogging.

This is neither Rylan's cup (note princess decor) nor Rylan's pacey. Klepto.
A moment of sheer bliss. Well, for Lily and Rylan. Aubrey and Addie look like they could do without this activity.
Rylan smiles for other mamas!!!!!! Love this pic
Maybe we should wonder why Rylan is so excited about being in bed with a lady?
Sharing means caring.

My friend Kelly had a bbq for her husband. Rylan saw somebody get in the cooler and hand a friend a beer. He decided this was the job for him.


We've also discovered that The Church At Rock Creek, which is neither Catholic like Ry and I, nor near a rock creek that I've seen, has this enormous room full of tubes and slides and all kinds of crazy fun. They don't card you at the door for proof that you are a "Creeker" and CATHOLIC doesn't appear on my forehead when I enter. They just simply let you walk in and let your child play with wild abandon. There is even a toddler area and nets and a mini slide and STARBUCKS!!!!!!
Addi: "you go down this way"
Madaline "no its way more fun to go UP the slide!"

Lily and her beloved bouncy ball. Well, it was somebody's bouncy ball till our group got there, then it was either Lily or Rylan or Madison's ball. That's how we roll. (get it, roll)
He only smiles for Michelle's camera
And last but, not least, was our outing at Whole Foods. See, part of why its helpful to join a playgroup is because you meet other moms, have adult conversations and provide your child with stimulating entertainment and teach them social skills. Another good thing about playgroups is that you find out all kinds of places to take your kid. Seriously, there are only so many trips to Chick-fil-A playplace, library, and the park you can take before they get old and your little boy just stares at you like, "this, again?" When you join a playgroup, you find out that non denominational churches have huge rooms with tubes that you can play at for free. You find out that there are train tables to play at for free at Barnes and Noble. There are a million more parks than you ever knew about. There are lots of places to eat free. There are lots of places to pay just a little and have uber fun. AND there are story times at all bookstores, at all libraries, AND at a little health food store called Whole Foods.

Previously, Whole Foods was a store that I went and gazed and browsed until I picked out the one to three items I could afford. Health food ain't cheap. Its such a neat store, with all kinds of fun things to look at and smell and such. Well, it turns out, on Fridays they have story time. With a whole play area I never noticed and a farm scene and a lady that wears overalls and does farm themed songs. AND they provide a healthy snack for the kids after. Totally fun. Rylan wasn't so much INTO the book reading, as much as he was into playing to the side and handing toys to all the other kids. But, he didn't make noise and didn't run off, so I considered the day a success.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Boopers

So, I have started calling Rylan, Boopers. I don't know why. I also sometimes still call him Baby when I talk to him. I realize he's nearly 2. I realize he's nearly 6'5. Baby just comes out sometimes.

I feel I need to share an embarrassing story.

I was getting Rylan out of the car and he started crying in a manner that sounded like he might have hurt himself. I meant to say "what's wrong, Boopers?" Or perhaps I meant to say "what's wrong, Baby?" You know what came out? "What's wrong Booby?" Like 10 people were getting in or out of their cars at the time, and all heard me call my child "Booby." So embarrassing.

So, here you are, some very cute pics of my little Baby Boopers Booby.




Love Love Love Love my little Boopers Booby Baby!!!!!!!!!!!1

Sunday, August 1, 2010

The pros and cons of a helpful toddler

My whole pregnancy I've known that I was going to need to stop carrying and lifting Rylan as much. For one thing, he weighs the same or more than some 3 year olds. For another, he is OVER half my height. I am also growing quite a belly and there is very little room for anyone in the front area. So, I've got my little (big) guy working on being my helpful toddler. We have successfully conquered:

1. Getting into his booster seat (high chair) by himself
2. Getting into his carseat by himself
3. Throwing something away when asked
4. Holding out a hand to help me off the floor or out of a chair (he makes a uuuuuhhhhhh sound)
5. Shutting the dishwasher door for us, shutting the door to the dryer, shutting dresser drawers
6. Helping to put his toys away (if you sing the clean up song from Barney)

Its really quite lovely because its a win-win situation. He likes being helpful, it gives him extra things to do and it really does help me.

Here are some cons to go with each pro

1.He can now get in his booster seat and start yelping for food. Pretty soon he'll sound like the plant on Little Shop of Horrors "Feed me, Seymour!"
2. He gets distracted on the way to the car seat. If anything, and I do mean anything is on the floor of the car, he crawls in and plays or eats whatever it is. I often put his sippee cup in his seat and lure him there that way.
3. This has two parts.
A.) He will throw something into the trash. There is a 50/50 chance he will get it back out of the trash, along with something else and bring it back to you.
B.) He doesn't need to you to ask to throw OTHER stuff away. Like bills, your wallet, the remote. He's really helpful. And our trash stinks, we know now.
4. He is starting to really grunt when helping me out of a chair. I do realize that I'm growing ALOT.
5. He sometimes shuts the dishwasher while you are stacking it full, he shuts the drawers before you can put the laundry in there, and when the refridgerator is open, apples are grabbed before the door gets shut.
6. Sometimes he only puts one toy away and then has a two year old toddler fit about any further toys.
Getting the kitchen swept
Another day, more sweeping. I bought him a toddler sized broom, but it turns out that it is more of a weapon of mass destruction, the big broom is better.

Sometimes you get the pacifiers out to clean for the new baby and your 20 month old decides that he needs a pacifier. He hasn't wanted a pacifier since 3 months of age, now, we hide them from him.
"Yes I threw away my stinky diaper, and maybe your blush brush too, hehehehe"
Another day, more trash to throw away.