Mal Smiles

Monday, April 13, 2015

Solo Parenting Weekend

We did it! We survived our crazy weekend of solo parenting. I feel like I've barely seen DLW this weekend and then Collins and I are off to Florida tomorrow.

We got to spend Friday night together and Xochitl and Scotty came over for a few mojitos. When it takes your baby nearly two hours to fall asleep, you deserve a mojito.
DLW was out the door by 4am Saturday morning to spend all day and night "in the field." He played Army in the woods with a bunch of college kids- sounds fun, right? Collins helped me study for my AFAA certification. She will most likely grow up calling her tushy her glutes.
We enjoyed a little sunshine and this SnapChat cracks me up. She's the best.
DLW got home at 6am Sunday morning so I could leave for my AFAA certification by 8:30am. I was more than prepared and it was a breeze. I will recap the certification process on here eventually but it was a walk in the park compared to BODYPUMP training. Overall, I learned a lot about anatomy and kinesiology and AFAA it's a great certification to get if you're at all interested in group fitness.
Yesterday was the first time I've ever left Collins for more than a couple hours. DLW had it under control and sent me pictures throughout the day. I was gone a total of 6.5 hours and she was a perfect angel for him the entire time. She's a daddy's girl already.
I've got a few things to finish up today before we head to Florida tomorrow. Tonight is BODYPUMP launch at my gym so I've got choreography running through my brain at a mile a minute. I still need to pack and maybe bust out a blog post or two. Maybe. Probably not. We will see... If not, wish us luck on Collins' first flight!

Friday, April 10, 2015

Starbucks Selfies & Iron Chef Week

Some weeks I feel like my Friday posts should be titled, "What I Posted on Instagram This Week" but believe it or not, I do take some pictures that don't end up on IG.

We celebrated our anniversary on Tuesday with a trip to Kohl's, Trader Joe's (to buy cookies) and Starbucks. Really living large, we know. We love a good Starbucks selfie.
This hoodie from Kohl's is super cute and also perfect for breastfeeding. I plan on wearing it when we fly next week. It's from the workout clothes section and on sale for $20 right now.
Collie Kate has never taken a pacifier but has now decided they are a fun toy. I have always thought pacifiers are adorable so I am happy to have one picture of her sweet face with a paci shoved in her mouth.
I think our Rock N' Play and swing days are numbered now that she can sit up. She's working on that core strength and can pull herself to sitting while laying down. DLW took this picture while I was gone and asked me, "should she be doing this?" Nope.
This is my life for the next few days. My AFAA certification is Sunday and BODYPUMP launch in Monday night. I will be stress free when my plane takes off at 7am Tuesday morning.
When you blow out two diapers in a row, your mom makes you wear a Christmas onesie in April.
It's "Iron Chef Week" in our house. That means we didn't go to the grocery store and cooked what we had in the house. My friend Amanda introduced me to this fun challenge that forces you to get creative in the kitchen and stay on budget. I have made pesto pasta, turkey and pesto paninis, chicken with gnocchi and by Thursday night I was reaching in the back of the pantry to come up with dinner. I threw together a few random things to create sweet potato taco bowls with homemade Mexican rice.
This is what 7pm looks like. DLW is kicking my buy in our "15 books in 2015" challenge. That lump under the blanket is Sadie and Layla is laying on top of two blankets and a pillow.
DLW is working all day Saturday and I will be in training all day Sunday so we are taking turns with solo parent duty. This will be the first time DLW has ever had her on his own for more than a couple hours- wish him luck. Happy weekend!

  • Does your baby like pacifiers?
  • Have you ever had "Iron Chef Week"?

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Buffalo Ranch Chicken Stuffed Peppers

When I posted a picture of last Thursday's dinner on Instagram I had no idea you all would be so interested. These stuffed peppers are an easy weeknight dinner and will get you plenty of likes on Instagram.

I was searching for new "clean" recipes and came across this buffalo ranch stuffed pepper recipe from Primally Inspired. I am not one to conquer a recipe with too many ingredients so I decided to simplify her recipe using pre-made spices and a few shortcut methods. This recipe is no longer "clean" but I'll take easy over clean when my cooking time is limited.
Buffalo Ranch Chicken Stuffed Peppers
Modified from Primally Inspired
Makes 2 servings

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cooked and shredded)
1 packet Ranch dressing mix
1 bottle buffalo sauce
2 bell peppers
Shredded cheese

1. Cook and shred chicken breasts. I like to precook my chicken breasts in a crock pot. Cover breasts in chicken broth or water and cook on HIGH for 3-4 hours. The chicken will shreds easily and can be kept in the refrigerator until you're ready for dinner.

2. Preheat oven to 350°

3. Mix shredded chicken, ranch seasoning, and buffalo sauce in a bowl. I used about 3/4 of the bottle of buffalo sauce to get the chicken nice and saucy.

4. Slice the top off of the peppers and scoop out the insides.

5. Fill peppers with chicken mixture and place in glass baking dish.

6. Bake for 35 minutes at 350°

7. Top peppers with shredded cheese and return to over for an additional 5 minutes.

8. Serve hot!

Even with mild buffalo sauce these stuffed peppers were spicier than I had intended. I would encourage you to have ranch dressing, sour cream or guacamole on hand to cut the spice if you're feeding spice wimps like us. Spicy or not, these buffalo ranch stuffed peppers were a hit on Instagram and at home.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

"I will strive to make our life good and easy"

Three years ago today we said, "I do."
During this third year we endured a deployment, I quit my job, we had a baby, and DLW started college full-time. This has been a year of living our vows.

I choose you to be my husband/wife.
I promise to love you in good times and in bad, to comfort you in sickness and in health, and to stand by you in laughter or tears.
I promise to support you through success and failure and to respect your dreams no matter how big or small.
I promise to be faithful to you when we are near or when we are far apart.
I will strive to make our life good and easy.
I will trust and respect you, care for and encourage you, be honest and devoted to you for all the days of my life.
We have had plenty of good times, lots of laughter and very few tears this year. Our four months apart only made us love each other more and appreciate the time we have together. DLW is living out his dream of completing his degree and he makes it possible for me to live my dream as a stay at home mom to Collins. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't feel incredibly fortunate to have DLW has my husband. He truly strives to make our life good and easy.
The traditional three year anniversary gift is leather. To celebrate I ordered myself a Baseball Lacelet stamped with the last line of our wedding vows.
Happy third anniversary, Daniel Lee Whitt. I am lucky to be your wife.

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