Comfort Food

I’m not even sure it got to 65 degrees outside today.
It has been raining all day long (which we can completely use!!).
I am absolutely in love with this weather.
Maybe not the raining all day long – but the cool/fall type weather.

Yesterday I had a pumpkin spice candle burning all day long. 
It filled my apartment with the scent of Autumn.

Today, I have filled my apartment with the scent of apple pie.
Or… apple crisp, to be technical.
Not coming from a candle.

It is my very first attempt at cooking an apple pie. 
I know, I know, I’m 27 – and this is the first time I’ve cooked an apple pie.
Let’s just say, growing up, my family never made pies… So, I never had that urge to make them when I got out on my own.

But.. since I’ve married Chris – and go to his parents house, where his mom bakes apple pies all Autumn long, I’ve kind of got the urge to try my hand at it.
Plus, since having my own child – I really want her to grow up with traditions of baking in the Fall… and knowing how to bake an apple pie. 
I’m quite excited for Chris to get home from work and see the apple crisp. 

For dinner I made Lasagna Roll Ups.
I’ve made them before, but found a different recipe to try.
They were quite delicious.
My daughter, who has been ridiculously picky the last few weeks, ate her piece all up!

I’ve been trying to find recipe ideas to make for my bestie (yeah, I said bestie), who is due with her first child at the end of September. 
When I had Lilly, she came over 2 days after we got home from the hospital – and she brought along some soup.
I cannot tell you how delicious that was.  Not only was the soup amazing – but also because we had been eating either hospital food, or take-out for the prior 4 days! 
Then she came back a week later with her husband and brought lasagna. 
Again, more homemade food.  So very nice to have, especially after not getting any sleep with the baby – and not having the urge to cook in the kitchen.

So, I figured I’d return the favor when it was her turn. 
At her baby shower she said I didn’t have to bring her food when the baby was born… but I know how amazing it was to have a home cooked meal… And I planned to do the same for her!

Anyway – these lasagna rolls are amazing.  They have all the flavor of lasagna, wrapped up into individual pieces.  Love it! 
I definitely plan on making these for them.
And another batch with alfredo and chicken. 
And probably the apple crisp.
And maybe some chicken and rice soup.

I have to get all my Fall cooking out of my system before December!

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Football Watching

We took Lilly to Packers practice on Monday night (also on Thursday night, but it was so packed we barely saw anything). 
While Chris was at work – I got Lilly all ready to cheer on the practice.
Can’t really see it in the picture – but those are green and yellow hair ties.  

We got seats this time, but were only able to sit there for about half an hour before Lilly started getting antsy.  So we got up and wandered around. 
Lilly loved running through the Atrium.  It was mostly empty – so she just kept running around having a grand old time.

Eventually someone started getting a little sleepy, so it was time to head home.

 I doubt we’ll be hitting up another practice, since most of them are in the morning or afternoon now. 
Maybe next year Lilly will be able to sit still a little longer.

So… I think we’ve been watching too much gymnastics on the Olympics, because Lilly has been crawling on everything – and jumping off.. and is attempting some somersaults.

Such a little gymnast.

Smoothies, Pinning and Walks

It’s no surprise that I’m addicted to Pinterest. 
I usually go through phases. 
One week (or month), I’ll be on it every chance I get.
Then the next, I’ll do something else (like read a book!).
Well, I guess I’m in a reading slump, because I have been looking at pin after pin for about two weeks now.
Any chance that I get.

It is really nice for meal planning.
Instead of being in a rut of eating mac and cheese, pizza, spaghetti, tuna noodle casserole… etc., I am able to find new recipe ideas, that I probably would never have thought to make.

This week consists of a lot of quick and easy meals, since Chris will be on second shift (starting tomorrow), and tonight we are planning on hitting up the Packers practice.
So, due to him being on second the rest of the week – I won’t have someone to watch Lilly while I get dinner prepped and ready…. and boy does she need to be watched these days!

I also found a pin about smoothies.  Quite exciting, seeing as how I have wanted to get back into drinking a smoothie every morning.  But really, come morning time, I have no ambition to get all the ingredients out and put them in the blender.
The pin I found was to buy your frozen fruit, then separate them into 8 (less or more) freezer bags.  You prep all in one day, pop them all in the freezer, then when it is time to make the smoothie, you just grab a bag and dump it in the blender with some milk.  
I cannot tell you how simple it was for me this morning. 

Here’s my freezer, packed with smoothie bags.

I did all the prep work last night.  I cut the bananas in slices earlier in the day and froze them on a cookie sheet.  Then last night, I took my frozen fruit (raspberries, strawberries and peaches) and the frozen bananas,  and divided them evenly between eight freezer bags. 
It took me maybe 10 minutes to do it all.

Smoothie making ingredients!

So this morning, I just grabbed one fruit bag, some milk (I decided to try Silk Vanilla this time, to see what kind of flavor I got), and some spinach. 

I blended the fruit and milk together first.

Once that was blended together nicely, I added a handful of spinach.

Why, hello beautiful green leaf!

Give it another buzz – and tada!!  you have a quick and simple smoothie.

Mine made a super lot.  Maybe next time, I’ll make more bags of fruit.
I was able to fill my 16oz cup up to the top.  And I had enough to fill another cup half full for Lilly.

I quickly had to change cups for her, since this one is not spill proof – and she immediately pulled the straw out – and tried tipping the cup over. 

“This is good stuff, Momma!”

The only problem with her sippy cup – is that whatever ends up in the straw (and doesn’t go back down, since it’s “spill proof”), will leak out of the straw.  And since the smoothie was thicker than her water/juice, she was able to bend the straw and fling smoothie all over the living room (and herself). 
I’ll be looking into purchasing a new cup with a straw for her soon. 

Yesterday was beautiful out!  It feels like I have been waiting for this type of weather forever… thought the meteorologist says it has only been a month and a half since we’ve seen lows in the high 50s.  Seems so much longer to me!
Chris wanted to go to Packers practice last night, but I just wasn’t feeling it.  Plus, I really wanted to go on a walk and let Lilly play at the park. 
So, off on a walk we went.
We ended up at a park about a mile and a half away.
It was small, just a swing set, a slide and monkey bars… but we had the whole place to ourselves.

Woodchips are so much fun!
Swinging with Daddy.

I think Lilly was tired, because she was not enjoying the swing. 
We usually put her in the baby swing, and she will smile and giggle and clap and wiggle her legs.
But yesterday, she just sat there… slumped in the swing, with a frown on her face.
So, let her run around a little… then Chris wanted to swing with her.
Again, she is usually so happy to swing with him… but not yesterday.

On our way back home, we took a different route and found another park, about a mile from our place.
I’m definitely thinking that’ll be the new park we go to – since it is closer to our place, had lots of play equipment, and we do not have to walk over the horrible, crumbly bridge!
So… this bridge… It crosses over the Fox River.  It use to be a bascule bridge (you know, one that lifts up so boats can pass under).  Anyway, they closed up the grates with cement and put metal plates over the parts that would open. 
However, everything is now starting to crumble!  The cement is falling out of the grates. The metal plates barely cover the holes. 
I seriously hated every moment of walking across that thing.  The city really needs to do something about that… because I sure heck am never walking over that again! 
…. Even driving has now become leery to me!

Anywho – it was nice to take a different route home, so we could find that park.  Now, whenever I want to walk again, it’s just about 1/8 mile on the busy road outside our place – to get to a side road that will take us to the sidewalk (and the park).  Plus, no bridge!