a very belated valentines day breakfast

Wednesday, February 22

Our family was hit with a cold like a truck this past week. First it got me, and then the kids, and the germs took us out one by one like they were actually enjoying it. As it is, there is very little that's redeeming about February. Especially a sick February and a February where my husband is gone for a significant chunk of it. But we do have Valentines Day. We have pink, and red colored everything, and chocolate, and each other. So, to make up for the fact that I was congested and consequentially unfestive on actual Valentine's Day, we had a belated celebratory breakfast when I felt like I could function without dying.
We decided on a very pink breakfast. These two are very much into food dye lately. The other day, we made four different colors of homemade playdough, and I regretted it immediately haha. (I TRY to be a fun mom I really do, but that crap is STRESSFUL.) But this was just one color, and closely monitored, so they were so excited to take turns mixing everything up.
 Some VERY pink waffles coming right up.
 And pink milk too.
With of course, our favorite milk of all time. We love using fairlife because in terms of protein, it's much more nutritionally dense (a whopping 13 grams vs. only 2 grams compared to regular milk), and it has 50% less sugar.
They were only slightly disappointed when the dye didn't magically transform the milk into strawberry flavored milk, but it was still QUITE magical.
When I served their plates up, Everett said, "wow mama you're like a chef now, we should live in a restaurant." And that's why you have kids. Because when you do only slightly above average work, they're convinced you're actually at the top of your game.
And because Everett is the special breed of human that he is, he doesn't enjoy syrup on his waffles. Instead, he prefers two fried egg whites on top, with salt.
All cut up of course, and fit just so on top of each bite. He is not sure why this amuses me so much.
Isla's more of a traditionalist.
I don't know what I did to deserve these sweet little love muffin valentines, but they love each other so much, and I am so lucky.
(My husband just read this line and said, "you married me that's what you did." So. Glad we solved that mystery. ;) )
So happy belated v-day guys!

This post has been in partnership with fairlife, a company that we use and love in our home daily.

a snow day

Monday, February 6

This January has been a real doozy. I wish I could love it, I really do, but it tends to get to me every year and this one has been particularly depressing for a number of different reasons. So late the other night, I was googling this, right. A basic, "how to make Janurary suck less" google search. And it tells me that the two solutions are, get some light, and get some exercise. So I call my husband to tell him about all of this. Really keeping the main focus of the conversation on my various feelings, and then oh also, by the way, these are some solutions. And if your husband, is anything like my husband, then you know that, MAN, a good, solid solution to a problem is like striking gold. Well great! he basically says. Light and exercise? You've got it, you can do this. And while the next words out of his mouth were essentially, "wait, hang on. I didn't mean to try and fix it, let me start over" while I silently laughed on the other end ... he was, actually, right.
So. For now, my resolution until it's not anymore, is to do just that. Get some blood flowing to my limbs on a semi-regular basis. Maybe. Fingers crossed. And also, get outside.
So last week for starters, my sister and I went rock climbing, and then this week we decided to take our girls out sledding, and just general snow stomping. Everett, however was uninterested in coming, as he does not function well in the cold, and is very good about honoring that part of himself haha. 
This girl on the other hand, loves the snow/being outside in general, and begs to stay long after I'm ready to go. It may have something to do with this puffball of a snowsuit which she asks to wear constantly.
I may be smiling, but on the inside it's all melodrama and pleading.
 Spring, are you there? It's me, Syd.
Of course, we could not show up without something warm to make us feel better about our life's choices for the day.
I'd warmed some hot chocolate on the stove before we left, and I'm telling you right now, there ain't no hot chocolate like some hot chocolate made with fairlife ultra-filtered chocolate milk. I will never go back to the mini marshmallows version and THAT'S SAYING SOMETHING. Nutritionally dense in protein (13 grams per serving!), with 50% less sugars than regular chocolate milk. Also the best you'll ever taste.
We took turns sharing sips in between sled runs.
And all in all, it was an afternoon venture that included neither exercise nor sun but we'll give it points for trying!
This girl is my sunshine anyway.
This post has been in partnership with fairlife, a company that we use and love in our home daily.

frameable, hangable, kid-made, modern art for your home

Wednesday, December 14

Oh yes, frameable, hangable, kid-made, modern art for your home. I mean, technically it's all frameable and hangeable. No one loves that carefully crafted piece of paper covered in blue and glitter and hearts with stick-on googly-eyes and glued on neon fluff balls more than I do. Those hang proudly on the fridge and then into a keepsake box a while after. But you know, usually not framed.
In our home, we have this gallery wall in the center of everything and as silly as it may sound, I kind of like to think of it as a grounding place for our kids. A reminder to them of where they belong and what is theirs. Often, when we're sitting in the living room together, they'll point up to a picture of themselves and recall the memory from it. Isla loves to point out that it was, in fact, her in my belly in that picture of me eating that ice cream cone. And she's quite fond of knowing that in the picture of the two of us on the beach in Oregon, she was nursing. Everett adores the picture that was painted of him, and tells Isla the story behind the picture of him and Tyson at Niagara Falls. The whole wall is us, and it's them. They know that I was the one to attempt painting that black and white canvas on the wall, so they were excited when I asked them if they wanted to make some black and white art for our walls too.

I do feel a bit like a weirdo for having them create art within certain aesthetic parameters, but they loved it! Everett actually called it his "favorite project ever." Mainly because I never let them write with sharpies haha.

And really that's the only trick to kid-made "modern art" haha. Just some black sharpies, and black paint and some big ol' sheets of this week's ads covering your table.

Their cousin, Roo joined in on the project as well, creating some of her very first smiley face prototypes.

Isla went with more of a traditionalist approach to modern art.

And Everett went with a Halloween scene under a night sky. He was born the day before Halloween and it is still his very favorite.

Everett didn't get messy at all (he noted emphatically), but the girls did.

Washing her hands is basically Isla's favorite part of any project and/or any activity and/or just because. Which is why I've always been legitimately happy to have Seventh Generation's hand wash around each sink in our home. Naturally hypoallergenic, it's made from plant-based cleaning ingredients, leaving those little hands soft but also squeaky clean. And 97% USDA Certified Biobased too - which means no triclosan, dyes or phthalates.

And the bottles are made from 25% post consumer recycled plastic to boot.

After their paintings dried, I framed and hung them. That poor gallery wall is already pulling its weight with frames, so we continued it one wall over, in our entryway.

And voila. We just love them.

This post has been in partnership with Seventh Generation, a company we've loved and trusted in our family for years.

my favorite on-the-go meal

Tuesday, November 29

I don't know about you, but feeding myself is hard. Not like physically hard. I like eating. I like having a large plate of food in front of me, ready to eat. But taking the time to first, create that plate of food in my head, and then cook it, and then eat it, THREE WHOLE TIMES A DAY, most often feels like a giant pain in the arse. So recently, to save me from myself, I jumped on board the overnight oats train. Now I know these are technically supposed to be eaten on the go in the morning, but I just make a bunch and have been grabbing them at any ol' time of the day. A LOT of 10 pm meals over here haha. Some days just get too busy.
So! My favorite recipe BY FAR has been this really chocolatey version. Because duh, it tastes amazing, but overnight oats in general helps me consume a hearty portion of good carbs and fats which is great for building muscle of any kind. Which I will be working on soon... any day now. Probably January. In the MEAN TIME though haha, it's a slow burn and keeps me full for a really good chunk of time.
Here's what I use!
1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 cup (heaping) rolled oats
2/3 cup fairlife chocolate milk
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
handful of dark chocolate chips
handful of walnuts

Throw it all in a mason jar and mix it up! Refrigerate overnight or at least 4 hours.
Most recipes for overnight oats call for almond milk, but I love using fairlife because in terms of protein, it's much more nutritionally dense (2 grams vs a whopping 13 grams), and it has 50% less sugars than regular chocolate milk. Which ... I don't know how they manage that, but props, because this stuff tastes like dessert. It is liquid gold in our house, and requires an emergency run to the grocery store when we're out. I'm also always picking up their little single serving bottles at the gas station on road trips. TRY IT.
I wish they sold overnight oats at gas stations as well but alas, SOME forethought must be thrown into my meals.
So. If you're like me and A) approach chocolate with a bit of religious fervor, and/or B) tend to approach your meal prep with a serious helping of lazy, then give this one a whirl.
Comes in handy when you're suddenly starving at almost midnight.
This post has been in partnership with fairlife, a company that we use and love in our home daily.
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