Saturday, October 9, 2010

"Deliciously Organic"

Sooooooo, whilst doing research for my "greatly amazing" new blog about eating healthy on a budget, I was reading a blog my friend Sarah referred me to. I was hoping to gather some info for my blog or find some yummy recipes.

Welllll, come to find out she's done exactly what I wanted to do!! LOVE IT! So, I'm just going to refer everyone to her blog. Perhaps it'll lead to some good FB conversations or blog comments here. Enjoy ~ I know I did!

I'm including 2 links (here & here) that are specific to eating healthy on a budget. But check out her whole blog, it's great!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The Blog Experiment

I'm considering starting another blog that will be somewhat of an experiment. I'm tired of hearing people complain how expensive it is to eat healthy (although I sort of agree, however, I think it's more of an issue of people not liking healthy food as much as junk food). So I want to keep a blog documenting my attempt to eat healthy on an average family's budget. I also want it to include tips on how other can do the same thing, where to shop, nutritional facts, etc.

After looking up the nutrition facts of one of my favorite fast food restaurants (I'd highly recommend that!) I was appalled at what I'd been eating! I knew it wasn't healthy, but I thought it would be the lesser of all the fast food evils. I was dead wrong! It really hit me at how intentionally ignorant I am about some food & nutrition aspects. I consider myself more educated than the average bear about this stuff, but I still choose to turn a blind eye to some things.

I want to help take away the ignorance of nutrition & mystery of eating healthy from people who really want it.

Sooooo, why am I talking about this here you ask? I want to find out what the average family of 4 spends on meals/groceries a week. We're a family of 2.25 & I know if I go off of what we do it won't apply to many out there with older kids. So please comment on this post & tell me what you think. Either your personal grocery/meal budget, if you're comfortable with that, or what you've "heard" the amount to be, etc. Thanks!!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


So Eve and I spent last week visiting my most gracious, wonderful friends Rachel & Nate in Minnesota. I met both of these guys when I was stationed in Japan. Rachel's family, the Red Clouds, became my family away from family. I hadn't seen Rachel in about 4 years, so it was a lovely reunion.

Eve did AMAZING on the plane! The flight wasn't that long, but she happily played & slept the entire way there! Thank God! We enjoyed the cool weather, Eve played in the grass & looked at the squirrels & chipmonks scampering around the Johnson's little yard. I met Rachel's delightful girlfriends. What a hoot!! One of them even watched (well was in the house while Eve was asleep) Eve for me while Rachel & I went to the movies. It was such a relaxing trip. I wasn't sure I wanted to come home but their little 1 bedroom/1 bath apartment was g
etting crowded. :o) Here are some pics from our first big journey! Many more to come!! (After uploading these I realized I got no pictures of me or Rachel! HA!)

Monday, September 13, 2010

Eve, mother of all the living

Our Little Sitter

For those of you who follow my blog just for Eve Updates, this post's for you!

Evie Poo-Poo (as we so affectionately call her) is 5 1/2 months old. She's the sweetest, goofiest, happiest baby ever! She's sitting like a pro! She loves playing in her exasaucer & rolling around on the floor. As I mentioned in my last post, she's trying her hardest to crawl. She gets more sturdy on her hands & knees every day.

I taught her how to read last week.

She's loves her bed! Sometimes I'll hear her playing in there for up to 30 minutes when I put her down. I know "they" say you shouldn't let babies play in their beds, but who cares! She's a dynamite sleeper so I let her play away! She's been sleeping 12+ hours every night. She's always been such a good sleeper. When she wakes up she just plays & lays in her bed til I come get her.

Her morning chore is to make the coffee.

Her favorite toys are her froggy paci, a giraffe, Daddy & a whisk I let her play with when I'm cooking. She loves faces! It cracks Grandaddy up that she's always trying to put his nose in her mouth. She's such a people baby! She loves her Jo-Jo & Grandaddy & even reaches out to go to them over Momma. Daddy, of course, is one of her favorites. He wrestles with her & she just laughs & laughs! She loves two of my "baby brothers," Parrish & Samuel. They were so interested in her all during my pregnancy & were always the first people to run up & talk to my belly. Now, she's one of their favorite little people!

Tickle time with Daddy.

Right before I took this picture she was hitting the chest with her toy there on the floor. I think she was trying to open it. lol She's going to be a mess when she finally starts crawling!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Rain, Projects, & Grandparents

Today was such a lazy, snugly, shnuckums-wuckums day! Eve & I were up early enough to be on our way to my mom's by 9:15 to work on a sewing project. I knew it'd been pouring down rain all night (such a sweet lullaby!), but I was surprised to see how hard it was still coming down when I opened the garage door. But with Eve securely strapped in her "bucket" (that's what my dad calls her car seat ... I like it!) & her & all of our tote-alongs in the car, we were committed. We waded in safely & I was glad we braved the weather.

While Granny Jo-Jo (my mom) & I worked on our projects, Grandaddy (my dad) minded Eve. By this I mean he rolled around with her on the floor & almost wet his britches laughing at watching her play with & try to fit his entire watch in her mouth (their most favorite pastime). She wants to crawl soooo badly! Won't be long! It looks like she's saying "I'm trying to crawl here, what of it?!"

My mom organizes a Round Robin Quilt-A-Thon with some of her friends from time to time & this is the first one I'll participate it. It's amazing how being a full-time nursing student while planning a wedding & having a baby can keep you from sewing! Go figure! So mom was helping me finish up my starter square. I lovers it! It will eventually be a bedspread for Justin's & my bed when it's done. Our bedroom is painted red & right now it's decorated in blacks, grays & browns. I wanted to keep that color scheme going but added some blue cuz it's the hubby's favorite color. I wanted the design to be kind of mellow & tranquil & something that invited you to crawl underneath & snuggle down. The borders are going to be done in a Japanese theme but in keeping with my colors. I can't wait to see the finished product!!

Yesterday I filled up the fridge (literally!) with fresh pureed fruits & veggies for Eve. I love baby food making day! So another project mom & I accomplished today was milling some rice for Evie's cereal. Up til now I've been grinding a little bit at a time in my handy dandy coffee grinder. Which has worked okay but gives it more of a sandy consistency instead of something creamy. So my mom got the idea to run the brown rice through her wheat grinder. It worked like magic!! It's now the consistency of flour & cooks up very creamy & smooth. The very best part is that I spent a whopping $2 on the rice & it's enough cereal to last Eve at least 3 months!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

A Hairy Ordeal

My mind's going crazy with post ideas tonight!

So for the last yearish or so I've been contemplating dreadlocks. I completely dismissed the idea earlier this year when I watched a woman get 10-year-old dreads cut out on a makeover show. She did not maintain them well at all. They were completely nasty, stinky & full of 10 years of ... well, crap that gets in your hair & stays there when you don't wash it.

Not to long ago I discovered Sara's blog, Walk Slowly, Live Wildly. She inspired me to reconsider. Her dreads are lovely! She does a great job at maintaining them & keeping them clean & neat. I emailed her to ask her some questions & see if she could clear up some rumors that go along with dreads. Anywho ...

So this week I've been having a mental debate with myself ~ grow my hair back out or put dreads in. I thought it'd be fun to put a poll up & see what you thought (whoever "you" is). Plus, it'd let me know if people are actually reading this thing.

Now for the big people food ...

Hello, I'm Abby & I'm addicted to the Food Network. It's true. I love it, love it! I even have the Food Network Wii game, Chop or be Chopped. I love cooking/baking & the Food Network completely inspires me (to either cook or eat). My friend Sarah shares my sentiments ... sorta. It's safe to say she's not as crazy as I am. But because Justin refuses to watch cooking shows with me, Sarah is my foodie buddie. I ask her on a regular basis to tell me why we're not trying to get on the show, 24 Hour Restaurant. She very calmly brings me back to reality. Okay, so a restaurant may not be in my future, but that won't stop me from expiramenting & creating in my own kitchen.

The other night, mashed potatoes were on my menu. My muy carniverous husband pretty much insists on eating bacon on or in everything. He's very easy to please! I'm going back to my vegetarian diet so I made His & Hers potatoes. Justin's ended up with bacon (of course!), cheddar cheese, butter & Cacique Crema Mexicana. Yummmmm! I went Greek with mine ~ basically because it's what I had in the fridge. So mine consisted of tzatziki (a Greek yogurt dip), herbed feta & garlic infused olive oil (something I learned how to do from watching the Food Network). Mmmmmm! To go along with my taters, I decided to try a Greek salmon flatbread sandwich. Thank God for CostCo! They have these amazing salmon patties that are to die for! I threw one in the oven then put it on flatbread with tzatziki, kalamata olives & herbed feta. It was all so easy & so delicious!

So I try my hardest not to jump on band wagons ... of any kind! However, I've taken a huge leap onto the cupcake wagon! I love em! I watch shows about them. I drive a 1/2 hour away to buy them. They're just so adorable & creamy & eccentric! So I've decided I'm going to make cupcakes for Eve's 1st birthday (yes, she's only 5 months old & I'm already thinking about it). I've decided to play with different recipes between now & then. I want to make them flavorful but healthy. So I found this recipe for agave nectar cupcakes. SCORE! They turned out soooooo delicious! It was a generic vanilla flavor but I'm going to expirament with a different flavor and also with wheat flour. I ran across an agave nectar frosting recipe as well. It tasted a little bit like what you'd think bad morning breath tastes like. So my search continues ...

Here's the link to the recipes I used. This chick agrees that the frosting recipe is bad, so attempt at your own risk! My Achy Bakey Heart

Monday, August 30, 2010

Feeding Frenzy

We're all about food in our house right now! Eve started eating solids about 3 weeks ago & she loves it!! She's eating rice cereal, sweet potatoes & peas. Today we tried some apple, so we'll see how that goes. She'd eat her weight in the sweet potatoes & cereal but the peas I think she just tolerates. Mealtime always ends up being a fun mess!

I make my own baby food. I picked up a box of rice cereal the other day & couldn't pronounce half the ingredients. That pretty much solidified my decision to make my own. Plus, it's so much cheaper! I use my coffee grinder to grind sweet brown rice into a powder. It probably take a little longer than the boxed stuff to get the right consistency (but I'm not sure, I've never made the stuff!). It turns out tasting like yummy cream of wheat ... something I'd eat! I love knowing exactly what's going into my baby's tummy. The real cost saver really comes with the veggies. I can bake & puree 3 sweet potatoes & have enough to feed her for about 2 months. Plus, she's eating pure veggies. I still nurse her every 4 hours-ish, so she's getting the great nutrition of breast milk too.

Saturday, August 28, 2010


My very talented ameteur photographer sister from another mother took some 4.5 month old pics of Eve.


Since you made it this far, I'm sure you're wondering what all this "Deffah" business is about. Here's the story ...

When I was a little girl I made up my own language. It wasn't just normal 2 year old jibber jabber. I actually made up my own words for things. My sister, 14 months older than me, was the "interpreter" of my language. For some reason, she was the only person who knew what I was saying. Deffah was my word for breakfast. I'd wake up in the mornings, stumble into my parents' room & my mom would wake up to a little toddler face inches away from hers, "Deffah!" She knew that if she didn't get up then & make me some breakfast I'd be in the kitchen fending for myself.

It seemed like an enticing yet significant title for a blog!

I wanted an outlet to brag on my baby, share pictures & stories with family & friends, & post some creative writing. Hopefully I'll entertain a few people with my random bits of knowledge about that interest me.