Thursday, March 28, 2013

Take Lessons...

I must say that hands down one of the coolest things in my opinion is when someone can sing or play music. I just find that such a cool talent that can be used anywhere. Jordan can play the guitar and I will never forget when he played it for me the first time, he even sang.
 Hello, melt my heart instantly.
I kind of wished that I would have learned more about music, but I ditched the flute a few weeks in back in 5th grade. I wish my parents would have encouraged me to branch out and try other things within the realm of music. I think that back then it was not easy to find lessons though, I mean it was either you learned at school or your parents taught you. Now there is an amazing site that you can find teachers and lessons in your area.

Insert the site to take the headache out of it all, Take Lessons.
It is so easy, anyone can do it! All you do is type in the type of lesson you are looking for and then your zip code and a whole list will come up then you can call and figure out which is the best fit for your child or teens needs. All of the instructors are screened so you will not have to worry. You can also read reviews on the teachers from actual students!

You can choose in-home lessons, in-studio or even online(via skype)

Right now they are offering 20% off their lesson packages if you use the code SPRINGMUSIC 
You can book online or by calling 844-334-1831. This promo is only good March 29-April 1st.
Disclosure: I was selected by Mom Bloggers Club for this social media promotion with Take Lessons. All opinions are as always my own and honest.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

New Table...New Hood....

Here are a few of the new additions to the house, soon I will have a whole kitchen update because that room has been the biggest overhaul bc it was a train wreck when we moved in! We got all new appliances, painted the cabinets and walls and so much more. I just am not fully done with the room so I do not want to reveal it until it is more complete. Anyways here are a few newer additions....

Dining Room table....we had the same ole table since we were engaged, only fit 4-6 people obviously did not cut it but we wanted to wait until we bought a house before we bought our big people table....
The new room looked so awkward with the small table...
Welcome THE BEAST table. She is 9 feet long and GIANT! haha 
I joke that it looks like the table from the last supper. The picture does not do it justice at all.
We used our old chairs from the other table and had the table and bench custom made.
 The room is FAR from complete and I think I will be kicking that armoir out of the room. I cannot wait to get the wall stuff hung and the curtains up but for now I am loving our new table! 
Next order of business was the NASTY white backsplash that was colored yellow from stains (yum) and the sweet old hood and the gap that was left because they had a freaking 60 inch range!
We bought a 36 inch range and still had a huge gap so my sexy husband built another cabinet and we had a huge butcher block fit for the caibnet.
(Vincent was helping the guys remove the hood)
 Well here is the after picture.
It looks 1 million times better! We just painted the backsplash area for the time being because I am not exactly sure what I want for the kitchen yet. All I know is that I am obsessed with our stove and hood. Thermador is hands down the best appliances ever. 

I am going to do an entire post on the 1-2 month process it took us to finally decide on what appliances to get, but man we made the right decision!

So there you have it, a few little house updates. I pinky swear more will come!:) 
Here is a picture of daily life in our house.
Oh Jude!:)

((House Hunters update....our episode could air ANY TIME! We are hoping they inform us first but sometimes they do not get enough warning))
Happy Wednesday friends! 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Brownies made from GOOD stuff.

I did not want to say Paleo Brownies right off the bat and have you guys running for the hills.
I know sometimes when something is "paleo" some people may equate that to "tastes like butt"
It's actually the complete opposite, paleo is amazing, it is funny the stuff I cannot stand anymore that I used to love. I have found replacements for everything in my life! 

Anyways I ran across these brownies last week and had to make them RIGHT THEN!
So I ran out to the store and stocked up on a few items I did not have on hand. 

First off let's take a peek at the end result, the amazing chocolaty goodness. 
No way those can be healthy, right!???
Well my dear friends they are and they are divine.

Here is what you will need. 
You will die over HOW EASY and little you need.
4 eggs
1 cup cocoa powder
3/4 cup pure honey
3 TBS coconut oil
2 tsp vanilla (i skipped bc I was out)
pinch of salt

I know, you are wondering....where is the flour?, what the heck is going on.
No flour here honey!

Melt the coconut oil and mix everything together, I did not even use my mixer, I just hand mixed it all, it was so easy. Pour it into a pan, I chose a 10 inch pie pan but a 9x9 or 8x8 would work! 
((Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes, mine was done quick so I would check it around 20 minutes!))

While its baking make the frosting, which is so freaking easy as well. The only downside is you have to let it chill for awhile before you whip it. 
Here is what you need: 
1 cup dark chocolate chips
1/3 cup coconut oil
1 tsp vanilla (which I skipped)
Melt the two over low heat in a saucepan. 
Once melted place in a dish in the fridge for half hour, you could put it in the freezer to speed that crap up a little. After that whip it in your mixer on high until somewhat fluffy.
((it tastes like fudge, no joke!)
After its done baking let them cool, cut your brownies and place on a plate and frost them! 
Jordan kept eating the ones I was taking pictures of haha! 
THEY ARE AMAZING. 
They are super rich flavored and over the top chocolaty! 

Thank me later.
PS Who ever said paleo was boring? haha 
PSS. I spruced up my baking nook in the kitchen. It used to just have a boring white backsplash that we cannot rip out because its attached to the stinking cabinets, well I fixed that with some contact paper the other night....I am obsessed with it!
(someone on instagram pointed out my wine rack is lacking haha, sadly true)

Oh, Bob Guiney!


You guys remember last year we when hit up NYC on a whim and met all the Bachelor/Bachelorette people, well we met our favorite Bob Guiney and found out that we were from the same area, okay an hour apart but still!
And remember he loved on Jude, melt my heart instantly, we need to get this man a smoking hot wife who wants babies STAT (and Bob is a gem, not kidding) but anyways remember that?? 
(dude, how crazy is it that Jude has NO hair back then hahah)
Well obviously those pics help jog your memory!
Remember I also told you he SINGS....and when I say sing, I mean he really SINGS, professionally and he is amazing, he used to do this before he even fell onto The Bachelorette and The Bachelor fame.
And if you ladies loved him on The Bachelor, you would love him in person, hands down one of the most real, nice and loving people I have ever met.

Anyways, we stayed in contact after that and we asked him if he would help us out with our new charity venture Free From Hunger, to which he said YES....told you he was amazing! 

Well last night was the night of the event and Bob rocked it out.
I only was able to snag them warming up bc you better believe we were hustling all night at the event gaining as much money as we possibly could for the charity! 
I think we raised 4-5 thousand dollars with the event, I will have final numbers next week.
Bob's entire family showed up and my oh my I have never met more amazing people in my life. 
You know those families you just fall in love with because they are that amazing, well that was the Guiney crew. The love and support they have for each other was over the top, I told his mom she raised such a beautiful family and how blessed I was to witness them in action. It is literally what I hope for my own family to be tight and always supporting each other. I wish I had more pictures like I said but we were BUSY working our butts off. 
If Guiney and Grimes is ever in your area you have to go see them! Tell him Allie sent you, you will love him! Special thanks to Bob for making this event a success.
xoxo

Friday, March 22, 2013

Bacon. Sweet Potatoes. Heaven.

Jordan and I have decided a few nights a week to cook up something extra for dinner and make it special and have an appetizer and dessert every now and then to take a break from the usual meat and veggies meal we have. Last week the side we made was so simple yet so incredibly tasty. I do not know why I never thought of this recipe but obviously all I needed was a quick visit to pinterest and bam this popped up! 

Anything with bacon has my name on it, then if you throw in sweet potatoes it is just double the pleasure for my taste buds. My friends, meet the bacon sweet potato spears. 
You may ask yourself, those potatoes sure as heck are not sweet potatoes, is Allie dumb?

Well my friends, I asked the lady that 20 times at Giant Eagle a few weeks ago.
I asked why are these not orange, like normal sweet potatoes, she informed me that sweet potatoes are indeed white and that I must be getting confused with yams? 
I of course had to let her know this was not my first time in the produce department nor my first time cooking with them, those bad boys are usually orange at any other store. Anyways I took home their white sweet potatoes and cooked them up, she was right they are sweet, and weirdly I actually prefer the white sweet potatoes, the orange kind of creeps me out! But I have found Giant Eagle is the only store in our area that carries them. 

Anyways, you will need the following:
A few sweet potatoes
Package of bacon
Brown Sugar(your choice)

Cut your potatoes into thick spears, really just like a steak fry.
Take your bacon and cut it in half while its still all together, take each half piece of bacon and wrap it around each spear. 
 Makes about 20 or so spears, then you can choose to add a pinch of brown sugar, which I recommend  it is amazing all cooked up! 
 Bake at 350 til the bacon is at the right crispness for you! 
I guarentee these will not last on the plate more than 15 minutes, if that!
This will totally be our go-to appetizer for parties! I am already planning on making it next weekend for Easter since we will have family in town!! 

Enjoy! xoxo

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Fake Skinny....

A few weeks back Jordan and I were at the gym in front of the mirrors working out and I was taking a good look at my body, you know you all do it haha! I thought to myself, damn I look pretty darn good after 3 kids and I look really healthy....FROM THE OUTSIDE....

I joked to Jordan that people in the gym probably think just by looking at me that I do indeed work out and am a genuinely healthy person but the insides of me are screaming a different story.
This is the first time in my life that I have been happy seeing the weight on the scale. 
I weigh less than I did cheering in college, that is huge because I beat myself up over every single weigh in during those years (yes, we had to weigh in to be light enough for the guys to lift) so it's obvious why I have a very familiar relationship with the scale. 

Well I am around 118 now, you would think man, that is amazing and yes it is and I am very happy with that number but it does not reflect the happiness that I thought I would feel when I hit that weight. My insides are screaming at me. Yelling at me for help.

I am a pretty good eater, but I do not eat near enough veggies, and I work on it but not near enough. At the start of the year I started experiencing horrid leg pains and unexplained joint problems, my father in law is a chiropractor and is chalking it up to a common pain of fibromyalgia, the other doctors wanted to throw muscle relaxers and high pain killers my way but I knew that was not the answer. NO THANKS DOC. Jordan's dad has me on a natural supplement regime to help clear my body of toxins and get healthy from the inside out.

It's funny because I can directly correlate these pains to what I am eating. I ate HORRIBLE junk crap food over the Christmas holidays (cookies, fudge, chex mix) and into the New Year and that is EXACTLY when the pains started. I was not sleeping well, I was feeding my body empty energy-less junk and my body is fighting back screaming at me to stop. The supplements are helping, they really are, but last weekend I semi-fell off the healthier eating band wagon with Jude's birthday party. I had chick-fil-a nuggets galore, chips and dip and coldstone cake out the wazoo and GUESS WHAT....Monday I woke up feeling like death, actually this entire past week has been horrible. I have been having the worlds worst abdominal and lower back pain and I have a pretty darn good feeling it is coming from the inside. My digestive tract is irate and I know it.

I keep watching all these food documentaries and I know darn well what I need to be eating. I'm not stupid. I know I should eat cleaner. We all know what we should eat, but our emotions pull us to eat the yummy junk. ((you would think the food companies target our weaknesses, oh wait they do)) And the problem is not what I eat for dinner or breakfast it's the stuff in between. We always eat very clean structured meals with veggies and meat. Plain and simple. But in between I will grab a piece of chocolate here or there, or grab a frappe bc my body is urging for it, a handful of popcorn here or there, a few bites of the boys mac & cheese, you know just the random snacking.

That is what is slowly killing me. The crap snacking. It's funny we eat "healthy" organic snacks but that does not matter, a cheddar bunny cracker snack is a carby snack and it's not good. Now that I am at the weight I want I need to clean up my act, I need to eat clean and treat my body how it needs to be treated. I want to feel as good on the inside as I feel I look in the mirror. I love my weight number, but I do not love the way I feel, I do not want to feel pain, I do not want to have trouble sleeping, I want to function like a healthy person should.

I think a lot of people loose sight of what truly healthy is. Our bodies are so accustomed to crap food and eating that we learn a new normal. A survival mode setting. It's funny because although last week I felt great with my supplements and cleaner eating, I knocked myself right back down by eating junk at Jude's party. It has got to stop. I do not want to be the fake skinny. I want to be a healthy me. I don't care if the scale goes up, I just want my insides to feel good. It's funny because you think once you get to that weight all will be well, obviously for me that is not the case.

Here's to treading on. Clearing out the crap even more than I already have. Here's to my insides feeling and functioning the way they should. Here's to my health.

Anyone else in the same boat?? Jump on board with me and let's kick the crap!
I am going to start posting more about the journey through this new lifestyle change.
I refuse to call it a diet, diets are not real, they do not last...
Who wants to change their life with me?

xoxo

Friday, March 15, 2013

Mommyisms....


Confessions, Thoughts, Randoms on motherhood....

Things that have been on my mind haha....

*I still have yet to take Jude to his 9 month appointment, and yes I did just say he turned one. Sue me.

*I have never taken the boys to get haircuts, I am the haircut master. I started cutting hair when Jordan and I started dating, he said he hated the awkward conversations when he would go get his hair cut so we ordered our own pair of trimmers and never looked back! haha

*I started all 3 kids on fruits, sue me again, funny side note, my kids eat every single vegetable this side of the Mississippi, they love veggies, they beg for them. Their faves are peppers, carrots, broccoli and celery. 

*If my kids ever mutter the word *yucky* to a food, I make them eat it just for saying that word. I tell them "Mommy will never ever give you anything yucky", which is true. I will never make them anything that does not taste good, but sorry buckaroos veggies taste good! 

*When we go to the gym, the boys are in kids zone and I soak up every minute of those 2 hours (they allow them to be in there for 2 hours), after yoga, I read a magazine in the lobby to decompress for 15 minutes.

*I firmly believe you cannot teach character to your kids, it is something you as parents show them. Want a good kid? Be a good mother and father, easy as that.

*No matter what is going on we sit down for dinner every night, I think it is very important to have this set event each day. Sunday breakfast is also one that we always sit together, we have a tradition, bacon, eggs and popcorn!:) We pop the popcorn in bacon grease, its FAB!

*Put your husband first, yes I said that, you two are one and you created your children, it is all because you fell in love and their input on things is just as important as yours. Remember the man you fell in love with and keep that flame alive, you want your kids to grow up with a great example of what a relationship should look like, they are always watching.

*We have let V&L sleep in our room for no joke probably almost 2 months, I don't really know exactly why it started but they love camping out on our floor. Jordan stated once "it's the only time in their lives that they will want to sleep with us so why not!?" He is so right, who cares if they are in our room, it actually makes us (me) go to bed on time! 

*Sometimes when I get really frustrated with the boys (like when they are all fighting and screaming over a toy) I pretend that someone is videotaping me and watching my reactions. It makes you really chill out and think before you yell. 

Here is a picture from Jude's party! His grin kills me...


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Flip Side....

We are now on the flip side of the surgery. HORRAY!
Yesterday was pretty crummy, well the start of it was at least.
We had to be at the hospital super early which meant Vincent was crabby, 
Homeboy loves sleeping, he sleeps in til probably 9 everyday!
We got to the hospital, checked in and then got in our room, 
Vincent was not feeling it at all with all the strangers in his face....
Thankfully we were blessed with the BEST anesthesiologist, 
He was so cool and down to earth. 
He came in and offered us all the options for what would go down, 
We could either let Vincent go on his own or drug him. 
We chose to let him go as is, but we prepared him with a game. 
The doctor told Vincent that he had to use a special mask to help him blow a balloon...
We made it a whole big deal and super special!
 The doctor was also great with ME....you know the crazy mom who was terrified.
He talked me through it and answered all my crazy questions such as "What will you do if he starts to die", doesn't everyone ask those?
Well he calmed my fears and it was great to have him let me know that he had kids and understood how hard it was to let them go alone.
Meanwhile Jordan geared Vincent up for his special mission with his mask...
 Jordan is hands down the best dad ever, I just love him....
 We got him dressed and ready....
 And then he was off....
 I am shocked crazy momtogrpher me did not take more pictures of the day but I am glad I got a few....
Meanwhile Jordan and I found seats, it was honestly the weirdest setting ever, the lobby by surgery was full so we went downstairs with our buzzer. I sat down and started crying over the what if's then I pulled myself together and got some hot chocolate. Within a few minutes a man walked up to the piano and started playing (clearly his job) but he played and I don't know why but it was so eerie. He was playing Ava Maria which is gorgeous but I told Jordan I hated it because I felt like we were in a movie and that at any moment a doctor was going to come tell us bad news...it was seriously so weird. All I wanted was silence, oh well, you cant win em' all right!? An hour or so passed and they called us up to let us know that the doctor was half way through and all was well. THANK GOD. Another hour passed and we went back to meet the doctor to discuss the surgery, all went perfect then FINALLY we were back with Vincent as he woke up. He was FAR from happy but we made the best we could with a popsicle and cartoons until they released him. Once he got home things were a lot better. I made him a special milkshake (which Luke of course cashed in on!) 
He slept good last night and was back in full action today. He has not even taken any pain medicine, which is shocking because he has a pretty big incision. I would want something for the pain! He will occasionally say it hurts but has not cried once. He walks funny which is so adorable not to let his thighs touch and cause the area pain. I am so grateful that he is doing so well. 

I am also VERY grateful for the amount of love and prayers we got. I cannot even begin to tell you how overwhelming and amazing it was. I know that those prayers have certainly helped him and I appreciate them from the bottom of my heart!
xoxo

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Trust your gut mommas!

There are many moments when you become a mom that you worry
About 75% of those moments are just us being spastic and normal moms, 
We worry, that is what we do.
We have these beautiful children and it is so hard to contain all the emotions behind them.
Its like I have 3 additional hearts outside my body walking around. 
It's such a surreal feeling and scary at the same time.
I am a worrier, not sure if you guys have caught that. I worry over every single thing.

Well, from time to time I turn out to be correct ((happy dance))
This is all started when Vincent was a baby, he was our first baby clearly so I did not know
exactly what was right and what was wrong so of course I always looked to our pedi for the final word and also for advice.

Well during his first few visits the doctor had said his one testicle had not descended, he said it was normal so I tried not to worry, is that even possible??? I am a girl so clearly I do not fully understand all the male parts and how they work, our doctor was a male, so obviously he knew.

Well I kept that tidbit of info in my mind and asked EVERY single appointment if it had dropped, to which he started to tell me it had even though I could feel that it hadn't....
But who was I to second guess, I mean he was the doctor, right?

Well 14 months later Luke came along, and his testicles dropped almost immediately which kept the worrying of Vincent's in my mind. I would randomly check Vincents to find that indeed it was still in the same damn spot, I pushed again and the doctor said it was fine. I kept second guessing myself that maybe I felt it wrong, Jordan was seriously probably so fed up with me having him check Vincent's privates but it was so evident once Luke came along that Vincent's was not right.

We moved to a new town which in turn gave us a new pediatrician. 
You better darn well believe the first visit with Vincent that question was #1 on my list even though a felt a little silly asking the question, since I had asked it probably 10+ times the past year.
And guess what....
I WAS FREAKING RIGHT...
His one testicle DID NOT descend down far enough....
So over the past 1 1/2 years we have visited the urologist and had ultrasounds to watch the movement of this darn testicle in hopes that it would drop on it's own....
Well here we are today....
Vincent is going in for surgery to have this taken care of finally....
Trust your gut!
I am just annoyed because this could have been taken care of 2 years ago. 
The whole problem of having an undescended testicle (cryptorchidism) is that the temperature of the body can have a great effect on it, leading to infertility and testicular cancer. 
That is why is HAS to be done.

I know Vincent will be fine but the worry is overwhelming this morning.
The thought of him going under kills my soul.

I had went back and forth on sharing this story since it is obviously about my son's area but this is something that can OBVIOUSLY be overlooked by doctors and I would never want any other parents in the same boat we are. Plus, it's not really a problem, there is nothing wrong with him! 

It's funny because I keep reading that if the testicle has not descended by 4 months of age it is most likely not going to, which drives me bonkers because Vincent is ALMOST 4 years old. 

Pray today for Vincent and always push for answers with your children.
We are in control of their health, we are with them EVERY day, doctors are great resources but we know what makes our kids tick and when something is wrong.
Always push for answers.
xoxo

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Vincent's surgery....

Tomorrow Vincent has a surgery....
(a post to come on this and why his 1st pediatrician is an idiot and why I am always right, needless to say if he would have listened Vincent would have had this surgery 2 years ago!)
I am honestly dreading the crud out of it...
The thought of Vincent going under kills me...
Vincent obviously has zero idea what is going on, all he knows is that he is going to the hospital, gets to watch cartoons on the iPad and gets to choose whatever food he wants after, right now he is requesting a chocolate milkshake. 
But me on the other hand is a hot mess ball of emotions, 
We were laying in bed the other night doing prayers and of course I start crying at the thought of anything happening to Vincent, I would literally die. 
I cannot imagine one moment of my life without each of these sweet boys....
I am trying to remain calm....
I laughed to Jordan that just maybe we will have the next David after Dentist....
bahahahaha
Gotta look for the positives, right??
Please say a prayer for Vincent (and my mommy sanity) tomorrow at 9:30am!
I know he will be okay but any prayers are greatly appreciated!
Lots of love, 
Allie

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Jude's First Year

I always make the boys a 1 year video....
I swore I would do it every year for their birthday but ya right, it is exactly the same case of making their baby book, I fell off the train....(I only have Vincent's 1-4 mos & 4-8 mos)
So I vow to ALWAYS make a 1 year video!
I did not have any videos of Jude so it's more of a slide show!:) Enjoy! 

Friday, March 8, 2013

O-N-E....

I had big plans for a wonderful post for my sweet Jude today as he turns one tonight at 10:47pm.
But that got kicked to the side as thing crazy day got away from me.
But here are some pics from yesterday of our little mommy and me session.
I grabbed a few bottles of wine and plan to say cheers tonight at 10:47!
This little man is hands down one of the biggest blessings ever. 
I am so grateful to call him mine.





Friday, March 1, 2013

Confession Sesh....

Some confessions on how I make it through the wildness of 3 little boys....

*I only put make up on and get dressed at most 2 days a week....Church being one of them, but the sweats go back on the minute we walk in the door!

* I secretly love the gym and yoga because it is acceptable to wear tights as pants, I push this fashion into every day life though, but the yoga class makes me feel normal hahaha!

*My husband cannot stand my messiness, but I swear even if I clean the kids have it a mess again in 2.5 seconds, so why bother....((even though I do still try my best for his sanity))

*Laundry is the devil and I cannot stand it. End of story.

*Grocery Shopping has also become so much easier, we get bulk meat from our farmer so literally all I do now is hit up the store for fresh produce, the rest is not necessary and saves time from shopping aisles.

*I park the kids in front of the tv in our room so I can take showers in SILENCE....scalding hot showers by the way, thank you DVR'd Thomas shows!

*I escape through reality shows....I am so obessed with The Real Housewives, The Bachelor, and my newest obsession is Nashville, if they ever try to cancel that show I may flip a lid.

*I totally hide Starbucks purchases into our budget, duh they ring up "Kroger" on the credit card statement and it keeps me happy and sane!:) Although, I must admit I prefer McDonald's Frappes over Starbucks so if Kroger could get a McDonalds in the store that would be great!

*I am so grateful for starting my photography business, it has become so great for my well being, following your dreams is key to making it through the craziness.

*I could not ever do this parenting gig without my sexy husband who is such a help with everything in our crazy life

*Last week was the first week I took Vincent to the library, holy heck that place is amazing and will be coming in handy as we mount on our new homeschooling adventure!

*I use music to get me through the boring cleaning of the house. It's always great to have a playlist to keep you going!

*I try my best to make the most out of every situation, no matter how horrid it is, because motherhood and life is craziness, I would rather laugh at the madness then be bitter, the thought that comes to mind is 3 nights ago we had to pull over for a potty break, and we got stuck on the side of the highway for 2.5 hours waiting for roadside assistance, instead of getting mad we just laughed at how insane it was.