Life as we know it

Our family adventures

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She loves her pretty shoes

Saturday was Aunt Jeni’s rescheduled baby shower. Mama wasn’t quite feeling well, but as an organizer I wasn’t going to miss it! Allie was feeling better from being sick all week too, so down to Rockford we went.

Unfortunately I forgot my camera, so I don’t have any pictures of my own to share. It was a fun, though exhausting, afternoon and hopefully I can steal some pictures from other people to post here soon.

Allie really liked getting dressed up and even let me put a hair pretty in her hair, and didn’t take it out! What she really enjoyed were her pretty shoes. She loved the tapping they made on hard floors. When we got home on Saturday night, I took them off her and put them on the book shelf by our front door where we usually keep her other shoes.

On Sunday she found them on the shelf and asked me to put them on her again. It was so cute, how could I say no? So of course I had to get a picture. I love this look with the pajama and the glittery dress shoes! What a cutie!

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Back in the land of the living

To say the Durso pack has been under the weather for a few days is putting it lightly. The Durso pack has been sick for pretty much the whole month!

Dada and Allie were a little sick around the time of the Super Bowl. Right after the Super Bowl Mama had some asthma problems that I thought were going to become an issue, but they didn’t. The it was Dada’s turn. He was sick for about a week and even had to stay home a couple days. Then when he got better, Allie got sick!

She kind of had a little of everything, but the main problem was a low fever and lethargy. We were a bit concerned just because she’d never had a fever that long before; it lasted six days. She was home all last week. Mama stayed home two days and then Dada stayed home the last three days because Mama didn’t have enough sick time.

Unfortunately by the time Mama went back to work, Mama was getting sick again. Then Dada got sick again. We’ve been passing this around all month! It was hard for both of us, but maybe moreso for Dada because at the end of the week even though she was still sick, Allie started feeling better. Its hard to look after a feeling-good Allie when we’re sick!

I can’t even count the number of times we’ve watched Toy Story over the last week!

Mama ended up going to the doctor and getting a prescription for prednizone because my ashtma flared really bad and my inhaler wasn’t helping. Its been at least seven years since I had asthma complications with a chest cold. I have sinusitis too, but right now its probably viral. Ugh, its been viruses the whole time! But this doctor gave me an antibiotic prescription I can fill Wednesday if I’m still not better.

Today was the first day in a week and a half that all three members of the Durso pack left the house to go to work! Back to the land of the living… Allie is all better, though we’ve figured out she has her 2-year molars coming in, which may have played a part in her sickness last week as well. Dada I think is better, though not all the way. And Mama feels better than she has in a few days, but unfortunately nowhere near 100 percent.

Our hope for March is that it will be sickness-free!

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Weight watchers, take 2

Doug and I rejoined Weight Watchers last Tuesday. It wasn’t a good first week back on the program. I couldn’t really plan for the points because I didn’t remember them. And a few times I was perfectly aware of the bad choices I was making. But that lackluster effort still netted a pound and a half lost. Being realisitic though, I know I could have easily lost a pound and a half without Weight Watchers.

My initial weigh-in last week was 179.8, 5 pounds above my weight when I stopped the program last July. Today I weighed 178. My initial goal is 5%, which is 9 pounds to 170.8. I will be ecstatic when I get there because that means I’m finally below my 174 I couldn’t get under for the last six months!

So now its on. I know exactly where I went wrong last week. Last week there were various treats in the office three out of the five days. Without good planning we were stuck with some not-so-light on points meals. A couple times we did resort to going out to eat.

Its been pretty easy getting  back into the tracking because I still had my profile with all my favorites and recipes. So I can plan meals based on whats in my profile and input the new recipes. I’m strategically placing meals through the week based on their points values. And the key is making sure I have a low-point lunch. Soup is the most obvious way to go because I can make a batch on Sunday and that will have enough leftovers to get through a good portion of the week.

The other part is activity points. My constant problem has been if I’m eating well I’m not exercising or if I’m exercising well I’m not eating well. I have my activity points tracking set to use them the day I earn them or lose them. I like that method because I can gauge how much I can eat to recover from my workout. And the more activity points I earn, the fewer weekly points I use. Last week I ended up with -34 weekly points. Ideally weight is lost by having weekly points leftover.

Its easy enough, at least in my mind. But its harder to implement sometimes. Tonight for Valentines Day we celebrated with a family date night to Applebee’s. Even though I had an Under 550 Calories menu item, it was still 13 points. That really wasn’t that bad. What was bad is the dessert Doug and I shared. Just HALF a maple butter blondie is 14 points! HALF! Is more than what I had for dinner. No wonder I’m fat.

But we’re planning a night out into our diet week too. You have to allow for those indulgences.

It just shows how hard it is to lose weight. But I will be successful this time, just like I was last time. My ultimate goal is still 140. And my sort of intermediate goal is still 163 since that will be my lowest weight ever. Losing 10% will get me just under that to 162. It won’t take long as long as I can stick to the program!

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Bedtime is such a precious time. We’ve been blessed that Allie’s always been a great sleeper. I enjoy bedtime now, though it certainly wasn’t easy when Allie was really little and I know when Allie gets a bit older she won’t always go to bed so willingly.

We have our routine, but Allie has learned how to delay the inevitable. Its always followed the same basic pattern. Going upstairs and getting a diaper change and putting on jammies. Into the bathroom to brush teeth and hair. Read a book. Get into the crib and sing “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.” Give hugs. Lay down and say good night, though for awhile I had to just make Allie lay down and quickly run out of the room. That was a time when she wasn’t so willing to go to bed.

Allie likes Dada to brush his teeth along with her. She likes to rinse her brush and put it back in the holder and then get a little water to rinse off her face.

Now we read two books. We read her current favorites, which she is infatuated with. For awhile it was “Brown Bear Brown Bear.” Then it was “Olivia.” Now its “Olivia Says Goodnight,” and “Hand Hand Fingers Thumb.” Dada wants to read books, but Allie only wants Mama. She says “mama read it,” and thats that. Olivia is the first book and after Mama is done, “Allie read it.” She takes the book and turns the pages acting like she’s reading, while Mama reads the “monkey book,” as Allie calls it.

Then its to the crib. We dance and move around while we sing. Then she goes to Dada to have only Dada sing the song. After that is a bunch of hugs. Depending on her mood and how tired she is, its literally a ton of hugs and kisses. Dada leaves and Allie yells for him and hides behind Mama. Then Mama gets a few hugs and its time to lay down.

We put a little throw pillow in the crib awhile ago that she lays on when I tuck her in but doesn’t usually stick with all night. She lays down and then her friends “jump” down to her. Those friends are Hippo. Penny (the penquin) and Taggie lay down, and Allie says who she wants to jump when. Then its finally time to tuck the silly kid in. She has two blankies and Mama covers her up nice and tight like a mummy. By mummy, I mean arms and sometimes her friends tightly tucked into the two blankies.

I’d say the last part is the cutest, but every part is the cutest. When she’s all tucked in nice and tight I tell her I love her and blow kisses to her. I whisper “I love you” and she whispers back. We whisper “night night” and then Mama is out the door. Its been awhile since the time when she would cry at bedtime. These days she plays hard and is usually pretty exhausted by the time bedtime comes around. We’re also still usually blessed with naptime, which usually has just as long a routine unless Mama manages to get away with reading just one book.

On a lot of weeknights bedtime is the only real quality time we get. Between making dinner and getting chores done, I’m usually a bit torn between letting Allie stay up to play with her or putting her to bed so I can sit down and relax a bit. So the act of going to bed means a lot more. The days are passing so quickly!

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The new chair

Allie really likes her new booster seat. She does well with it, but doesn’t understand that she has to stay in the chair until we clean her up and let her get down. The seat doesn’t fit too well in the chairs that we have now, but soon we’ll have a new dining set with some better chairs.

It was a little bitter sweet this morning as I decided it was time to take the high chair down to the basement. I also moved some other things around to make a little more room in the dining room. Its so strange not to see the chair there!

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Our food this week: Super Bowl edition

We had originally planned on going out for the Super Bowl. But with two of the three members of the Durso pack feeling under the weather, we ended up staying home.

For out Super Bowl entre, I got some crock pot chicken taco chili going. The chili had some kick! It was really good and really easy to make. I didn’t have to do anything with the chicken, just put it on top of the chili and then shred when it was done and keep cooking a half hour longer. I loved melting shredded cheddar cheese over it.

We weren’t in a hurry to eat, however, as our favorite snack lately has been tostitoes with warmed queso dip. With my new crock pot, I got a little dipper warmer. I stick some dip in, plug in, and I have toasty warm dip in an hour. I’m not sure theres an dip I can really make in the warmer though because its pretty small. It only holds about a cup.
I hadn’t baked in awhile, so the weekend before I had bought some bananas and strawberries for these strawberry banana muffins. I didn’t end up getting the chance to bake until Sunday as we waited for kickoff.

The muffins came together quickly, once I ran to the store to get flour since I hadn’t realized I didn’t have enough. I think it was because of that side trip that I forgot to put in the melted butter I’d left in the microwave. Despite that, the muffins turned out well, though quite dense.
Allie likes them! I will make them again to see how they turn out when the butter is included. I’ll also use more banana. I only used two, but it could have used more.
We didn’t eat very many bananas that week, so I had three more left. I started searching out a banana bread recipe. I remembered this recipe I’d seen awhile back for marbled banana bread, and was happy to find I had all the necessary ingredients!
This turned out SOOOO good. The unsweetened cocoa sweetens when its marbled and its a great compliment to the banana. It was so easy to make too. Its the kind of treat I can buy at Starbucks. And its cheaper since I made it and its also fewer points, which is important as we rejoined Weight Watchers this week.