Thursday, December 17, 2009


Imagine a world where your mother doesn't live anywhere close to you. And I am not talking a few states away, I am talking a 10 hour time difference. Like all the way across the ocean, and then some. I am talking about Abu Dhabi. The thought kinda makes my stomach hurt. In case you don't know where Abu Dhabi is....let me fill you in

That little red bubble with the "A" in it....yeah, that's Abu Dhabi!

Honestly thought, if my mother and my step father were going to be going anywhere in the Middle East, I am glad it is this city. I have been looking at pictures, and well....this isn't so bad!

Honestly though, it is almost selfish of me to get so upset about it because it is my mother and my step father that are really sacrificing so much. They will no longer get to watch their grandson grow up in front of their eyes, we will now be limited to Skype.

This whole Abu Dhabi situation isn't a for sure thing yet, but my Step Father's job might be sending my family that way. They will find out in a matter of days and then just like that, they will have to start making travel arrangements. It is something that would happen very fast. When my mom told me that it would happen fast, the first thing I imagined was myself standing there, mouth gaping open in the same place from the time she told me they were leaving to them walking out the door. My mother and I are very close, and it does make me horribly sad to think she might not be a part of my every day life. Right now we live with them. If they are to go, then they would be relying on us to take care of their house for them. They would be gone a total of 5 years, so we would be living in their house for five years. Rent free, just taking care of the utilities.

What would you do if your parents told you they were moving across the world?

Monday, December 14, 2009

the melt in your mouth kind of good

I am talking about Butter Cookies. But not just any kind of Butter Cookies....these butter cookies! This is the best picture I could find of them. Words just cannot describe their pure deliciousness. I make them once a year, I would make them more but its a special occasion kind of thing.

One of the best parts about these cookies is they are so fun to decorate and you can make it into a nice little family event. This is me and Jordan's brother's girlfriend Katie. We decorated the cookies this year for Thanksgiving.


I have decided to share this recipe with you because I just don't think it should stay locked up. Please do me a favor and make these cookies, you will thank me later, I promise!




6 Cups of All Purpose Flour
3 Teaspoons of Baking Powder
1 Teaspoon of Salt
2 Cups of White Sugar
2 Cups of Butter (4 sticks)
2 Eggs
6 Tablespoons of Heavy Whipping Cream
2 Teaspoons of Vanilla Extract

  • Sift together flour, baking powder, salt and sugar into a large bowl
  • Add the butter, now this is the most time consuming part. I suggest letting your butter sit out for just a few minutes before adding it to let it soften up a little bit. I start by breaking the butter sticks up into smaller pieces and adding them to the mix. You will not be using any electric mixers or anything to mix this together. By grabbing handfuls of butter and flour mix, start rubbing the butter into the flour, finely. It will start to look more like bread crumbs if you are doing it correctly. Smoosh the butter into the flour.
  • After all 4 sticks of your butter are mashed into the flour mix, add your eggs, cream and vanilla extract.
  • Make sure your hands are washed and dive into that bowl with both hands, just start mashing everything together. As the dough becomes more thick, you will start kneading it together. You will know when it is all done.
  • I separate my dough into sections to make smaller balls and then wrap up each ball into aluminum foil. You can do the whole thing, but you wont be happy about it the next day when you are trying to use the dough and its a giant rock hard ball. Little rock hard balls of dough are much easier to work with.
  • Place all of your balls of dough that are in the aluminum foil into the fridge, this dough needs to sit over night.
  • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees
  • Start rolling out your cookie dough, you are going to leave it pretty thick, about 1/4 inches thick. This helps give the cookies their cakey feel/taste.
  • Grab any cookie cutters you have available and start making any shapes of your choice!
  • Place your cookies on a non-stick cookie sheet and back between 5 to 8 minutes. I prefer the shorter of the two times because I love super soft cookies.
  • Next you can put icing on your cookies or just enjoy them plain! Hope you enjoy

This picture I am posting for everyone but mainly my grandparents, just so you can see all of his teeth he has now. He is beginning to look like such a big boy!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Snow? In Texas? Two years in a row?

Yes, yes and yes. Okay so I know I am a little late on this blog post but my goodness, the days are getting shorter. I promise, it's not just me. So last year it snowed and this year it snowed, tis a beautiful thing. This years snow was so awesome! I have a few pictures to share with you from our Houston Snow Day!

Doesn't it look like a blizzard! Because it totally was! Only kidding, I was being sorta unsafe (Caden was not in the car!) and took this photo while driving so I could get this effect. But really...

It was a peaceful, beautiful snow

And then it really did start coming down pretty hard and fast

The roof after a little bit of snowfall

The roof a little later, its got some real depth there!

Thank you snow, for sticking to the ground and giving little kids all over Houston the opportunity to make snow/mud men!

One of my favorite pictures of the day, the Texas flag mailbox with some snow on it

My beautiful friend Sarah enjoying the snow day with me!

So part of the reason why this snow post is so late is because I have been soo busy! Along with staying at home and raising an 11 month old boy, I have been having to do all sorts of Christmas shenanigans (not really, cause I love it!), birthday planning and back to school preparations. So its been go, go, go! And I am trying to keep up with this new little plan I have for myself. I would like to read and complete one book a week. I love reading oh so much. And I am trying to make this goal for myself so I will actually read and finish all the books I have picked out for myself. I buy books all the time, it is an addiction. If I am trying to just get out of the house, I will go to Barnes and Noble and just browse through the aisles until I see something that catches my eye and then buy it. I know the saying to not judge a book buy its cover, but I don't judge, I just buy! I honestly cannot say that I have read a bad book by working on this technique of mine but I have probably missed some really great ones by doing so. I also buy recommended reading so if someone has something they would like to recommend, I am all ears, or eyes.

I am going to leave this blog post with some pictures I took with my cell phone of my mischievous little boy to show how much fun he is having with Christmas so far.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Birthday Party Bliss

Bliss might not be the right word to use right now because Caden's birthday falls right after the Holidays, which I should have thought of sooner. I have a lot of planning to do in a very short amount of time. The only thing I have done is this...

The invitation, but see how I only have the date figured out. I don't know the time, I think I know the place. I haven't done decorations or anything! That is all I have! I'm actually kind of in panic mode. I actually designed and put together this invitation while we were in England and Caden was sleeping. I figured I could save a few pennies by designing and printing the invitation myself. I don't think it looks half bad. If anyone has any ideas on where to get some good party supplies, please let me know. I am off to do some grocery shopping so I can cook some Chicken and Dumplings tonight.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Santa Baby

Today was a very productive day! First we started off by eating some delicious breakfast at the famous Cracker Barrell. Like, seriously, delicious but it should come with a warning that even thinking about this restaurant can probably make you gain 5 lbs. So after we ate breakfast we headed to the mall to get some Christmas shopping done. We didn't really have anything particular in mind, we were just going to wing it.

First though, Santa was at the mall.

If your like most people, you will look at this picture and say "Aw, I can't believe he is smiling in the Santa picture! Aren't most babies scared at this age?"

I am very proud of how nice the Santa picture that I actually bought turned out. But it wasn't all smiles the whole time. My beautiful friend Sasha was along for this great adventure and I asked her if she would snap some behind the scenes photos. Here is your backstage look at how the Santa photo shoot really went down.

Getting ready to meet Santa!

"Hi Santa, nice to meet you! I've heard some really great things about you!"

Caden is just checkin Santa out at this point

Now he is making sure Mommy isn't too far away

Just checkin out his surroundings

"Hmmm" I think Santa is starting to look a little suspicious to Caden

"My what big, fluffy hands you have"

"Momma, I feel like I've stepped out of my comfort zone!!"

"Please come get me now!"

"No, seriously! I want down!"


"Oh! Thank goodness!"

"That was a close one"

"Thanks for the hat Santa!"

"Ya know? He wasn't that bad after all!"

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Great Offer

So, there is this magazine that I love, well...there are several magazines that I love and subscribe too but this post is only about one of those magazines. This be the one

Good ole Parents magazine, I was first introduced to this magazine in my OB's waiting room and then accidentally received a subscription just for buying clothes at Motherhood Maternity. Okay, it wasn't really an accident, I was duped. They told me to sign this "thingy" and receive free issues of Parents magazine. "Well shoooooot! Why not?!" Ahem, several months later, a charge appears on my bank statement for a subscription that I never asked for, they gave it to me!!!! So I called them and told them that I didn't feel it was fair and I shouldn't have been charged this measly $20.00 for a magazine I didn't want in the first place! I let them have it, the charge was taken off. All smiles! Until I missed the magazine, it had such good articles on all sorts of cool things. And reviews on things to buy for babies and children. Yada yada yada, I'm weak, I gave in, I subscribed for 2 years. Whatever, don't judge my weakness for magazine subscriptions that I didn't even know I had until it went from Parents to Real Simple to Lucky to Us Weekly, ohhh the list goes on. Anyway, this post is all about Parents Magazine. And I think I just proved that it really is awesome.

It has really cool things in it for Moms and Moms-to-be! Really cool things like this...

Really useful health information on things like thermometers, apparently ear thermometers are easy but aren't the best way to go if you want the most accurate temperature of your young one.

And tips on how to make the Holidays your own, more memorable and meaningful for you and your family. Start your very own traditions!

And things for Momma herself!!! Because sometimes we need something for ourselves, I personally forget about my own self sometimes, but for good reason.

Perfect for this time of year, gift guides! I need help, I don't have time to be creative!

Soooo, there you have it. All of the reasons why Parents Magazine should be coming to you once a month. Well I know that subscribing costs money and it might not seem worth it for a magazine that you might not even read. So I am here to give you a nice little Christmas present. Kind of...Parenting Magazine sent me a thing in the mail saying I could give a subscription to a friend for only $5.00! $5.00 for a one year subscription! Well the most exciting thing about it is, I am going to pay for it. I will pay that whopping $5.00 so you can enjoy this magazine yourself, and maybe get a new subscription once this one is up.

Problem is, it is only for one person so I need you to help me out on deciding who gets this offer. All you have to do is, become a follower of this blog if you aren't already. Then, just leave me a comment telling me how sweet and wonderful I am for offering this to someone! Just kidding, you just have to tell me what YOU want for Christmas, like...what's at the top of your wish list. And tada! The magazine could be yours. I will do a drawing from all of the comments, and choose who wins. Now, I don't have many followers and I don't even know if anyone except for my grandparents really reads my blog but it's a good way for me to find out!

So get to following and commenting and I will announce the winner by Wednesday or Thursday, depending on how many people have chosen to participate! Good luck!


Saturday, November 28, 2009

messy, messy baby

Last night I was home alone with Caden and I decided to cook him a gourmet meal. I started off by cooking some Barilla Plus pasta, which if you haven't tried it, please do. It is a multigrain pasta in case you aren't in to the whole wheat pastas. This pasta is extremely healthy and has crazy things in it like lentils, oats and even flaxseed. It tastes JUST like regular pasta. Then a cooked up some ground, Jenny O turkey and got some low sodium tomato sauce. Put all of this together with a little bit of fresh, shredded parmesan cheese. We both loved the meal. I am loving how now, we can share food with each other. Caden doesn't really like to be fed anymore, he likes to feed himself, and who ever is sitting next to him while he is eating. Needless to say, it was a mess, a big mess. One that I didn't even really have the energy to run him up to his room, undress him and give him a bath. Instead, I stripped him down and put him in the sink. He loves the sink, and I I took some pictures so you can see this big boy bathing in the sink.

"what's this?"

"hmmmm, lemme see here..."

"are you sure about this?"

"ALRIGHT! I'm in! Let's do it!"

"I know, I'm pretty cute"

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend, much love!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Caden's First Thanksgiving

I would like to first start off by saying that I hope everyone had a fabulous Thanksgiving with Family and Friends. I would also like to start this post off by sharing a picture of Caden playing with his lion. This particular picture is for my Grandparents across the pond, I want you to know how much Caden loves his lion.

Thank you Nana and Poppa

Bellow are a few of the many reasons why I love Thanksgiving....

Giant pots filled with...

Delicious mashed potatoes!

Dinner rolls....oh how I love thee

Turkey for everyone!

Wonderful women like this that slave away in the kitchen for hours, making delicious food

I love how the family comes in town and we are all under one roof

or outside on the patio

My cousins spending quality time with my son

Watching these two pester each other

Even though this happens at least once a week, it's always fun watching Caden and his Mimi play together

Watching Caden eat his first Thanksgiving meal

Watching him, watch everyone else

Watching two brothers enjoy the day together playing video games...

Having "fine" plastic ware wrapped all fancy in paper towels with a paper ring around it...

Having everyone love the Christmas Cookies I brought/made for dessert

How we get to start decorating for Christmas!!!

As for what I am thankful for........

Caden Joseph Giles