Monday, November 28, 2011

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Turkey Stock

I just made my first batch ever of stock. Super exciting!! I think I will be making my own stock often from now on, it's so super easy and it smells good. Not to mention that it's obviously healthier and why not put all the scraps to good use before throwing it out! And since I was going to all that trouble, I just went ahead and pulled all the scraps off the bones and the lucky dogs got a super Thanksgiving too!

I figured this was the best time to give it a shot since the bones have already been roasted along with the turkey and there are SO many scraps leftover from meat & veggies.

I was told basically how to make it, by a friend, but I still googled it. It's all the same, pretty basic, nothing super picky with measurements.

In case you're interested, this is what I ended up doing:

Turkey Stock

1 carcass (& and all scraps)
2 medium onions
3 ribs of celery (leaves & ends included)
1.5-2 cups of carrots (peels & ends)
1 bay leaf
1 tsp sea salt
dash of pepper

I chopped all the veggies into big chunks and threw everything in the pot. I had to break up the carcass to get it all to fit in the pot. Filled it with water until everything was covered, only an inch or 2 beneath the top. Bring to a boil, lower heat, cover & simmer for 3 hours.

I read somewhere that after you've strained all the chunks, throw the broth in the fridge overnight. In the morning the fat will have solidified and you can easily remove the fat then.

turned out pretty yummy for stock.

I plan on making some soup with this and leftovers tomorrow, we shall see how it turns out!

Friday, November 25, 2011

14 months

A few of my favorite pictures at 14 months.

Recent Milestones

Jocelyn has been trying to eat with a spoon...actually, demanding it. Every meal, she refuses to eat a bite unless she also has a spoon to feed herself. So I usually have one to feed her in between her bites. Tonight, she totally ate an entire meal feeding herself with a spoon. With very few misses and very little mess, I might add. I almost cried, as silly as that may be. It just makes me sad everytime she takes a step towards being a big kid. She hasn't been a baby for awhile already it seems. It's like she woke up overnight at 12 months and suddenly turned into a full blown toddler. It's crazy how fast they grow up!!

She now climbs up the stairs to the playhouse (at home and at play areas) and goes down the slide all by herself. It makes me nervous, so I hover, but she insists and really LOVES going down the slide. Over and over and over again :) She's quite the pro.

She's also really trying to talk. She tries repeating a lot of words that we say, anything she doesn't know how to say still comes out as "dada" or "baba". I really need to write down her list of words. There's a lot that I understand she's trying to say, but pretty sure no one else could make out. Right now she can very clearly say: Dolce (he gets yelled at a lot :) lol), shoes, dance dance dance (accompanied by a little dancing), jersey, fish, bye bye, hi, no, I'm sure there are a few more. Words mommy understands: thank you, doggy woof woof, kitty kat, also a few more I can't think of right now.... And she knows the signs for: milk, eat/food, more, and come.

PaPa bought her an iPod touch while we were in WA. I'm not kidding, just for her. So we put all kinds of kid friendly music, including an album of The Wiggles (which she flippin' LOVES!!) as well as a few educational/baby learning apps (and games). Pretty cool because there's one where she picks a picture of different animals or other objects, it states the name and makes the noise. She loves that one and plays it all the time. Along with angry birds ;) lol She also knows how to play her songs, she almost always chooses The Wiggles or Johnny Cash. :) She actually will bring her iPod to me and (in her own way) request a song. There's a song called "Rock-a-bye Your Bear" and in the song they clap, turn around and say "sh sh sh". She follows along with all the motions and does the shushing. Anyway, she will bring me the iPod and say "sh sh sh" (she does the shushing with her finger in front of her lips b/c that's how daddy taught her :D) and refuses anything until I play that song for her. Today she figured out how to put it on repeat, so it played over and over and over again with her holding it up against her ear listening. Pretty cute if I do say so myself :) This child loves her music! I think she's going to take after her daddy in that area.

And TOTALLY random last comment for this post: My turkey turned out freakin AWESOME yesterday!! I'm totally tootin' my own horn, but it was the best turkey I've ever tasted, EVER. period. Hopefully I can repeat for Christmas and again every year!! The entire turkey turned out moist and juicy (white meat and all) and very flavorful. Mmmm! Eating leftovers will be a piece of cake this year =)

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!!! (Updates)

Man, I have a lot of catching up to do. I didn't even realize it's been so long since I posted last.

I don't know how other moms can keep up with a blog. I just don't have the energy to THINK about recapping the day, or week or month to share with family/friends. Did I mention that having a baby totally sucked all the brain cells outta my head? I kid not. She's smart, I think she totally stole what little I started with ;)

Most everyone keeps up with us on facebook, I send quick updates on the spot when something funny happens, but I know we have family that check in on us in here. So in case you haven't already's our udpate:

Jocelyn measured at 99th% for height at her 12 month check up. I have NO idea how she is so tall. We have extended family members on both sides that are around the 6" range. My family is actually taller than Mike's, but not by much. We're all mostly pretty much on the average or shorter than average side. I'm interested to see if she will start leveling off around 24 months as everyone keeps telling me. The Dr told me that would start happening at the 12 month but instead she jumped up a few %s.

I can't believe I never posted any pics on here from her 1st birthday. I take a million pictures, nearly daily, but it just takes forever to get them on blogger. Not a fan of the process, unless it's changed in the last 4 months.

Last week Jocelyn and I went to spend a week with my dad. He just came home from Afghanistan. We had so much fun, and Jocelyn really did so well!! She came down with a really nasty cold just a couple of days before we were to fly, but she still did amazingly well on the flight and every day of our trip. Of course, we always end up running around all day, everyday hitting up spots I don't see out here or just miss seeing over there, visiting with old friends, etc. Basically running PaPa ragged, plus I think just watching Jocelyn run around 24/7 is exhausting to a grandparent. =) Jocelyn, though highly entertaining and so loveable, has a way of draining your lol Did I mention she is a busy little bee? :) Everywhere we go, she usually ends up playing with kids 6 months + older than her. It's SO hard not to be an annoyingly braggy parent, but I try really hard not to be. However, when I was with my's totally a grandparents right to brag. It was awesome :) I could gloat without coming across as the annoying parent because I never had to say a word! :) LOL

So today is Thanksgiving, I think this has been my most challenging Thanksgiving to date. It beats even my first Thanksgiving, but only by just a little bit. I've been cooking the entire Thanksgiving (and Christmas) meal alone for 5 years now. I was really counting on getting up a couple of hours before Jocelyn, so that I could get a start on dinner preparations without the extra help ;) Well things didn't really pan out that way. She decided she wanted to be wide awake and full of energy at 6:15 this morning. The last month or so, she's been waking up between 8-9 and still pretty groggy. She's just like mommy. We wake up a little cranky and need 30-40 minutes before we're actually fully awake. Not today!! LOL I actually tried laying in bed with her hoping she would doze off if we curled up in my bed, but she was all smiles and jumping around. And how could you possibly be cranky when there's a silly smiley little girl climbing all over you? lol You can't, no matter how much you wanna be. Anyway, we came downstairs and she was getting into absolutely EVERY-thing. So I didn't get the turkey in the oven until 10am, which ended up being totally fine since Mike didn't even make it home until 5. My neighbor dropped off some yummy treats and suggested that I throw her in the kitchen sink to splash around in the water while I cook. Why didn't I think of that?? She LOVES playing in water. If this child could live in water, I think she would. So it totally worked for a little while and she got PIPING MAD when I took her out :) lol But I was getting to the point that I had to turn my back a couple of times for a second and that just made me way too nervous. May be okay for a mellow, immobile baby, but not for this little monkey! I say all that, but really, she did AWESOME today. We had a couple of melt downs during the day, but minus the rough start this morning, she was SO good. I was really proud of her. I had to be in the kitchen ALL day basically cleaning up and cooking and cleaning up and cooking some more and she kept herself entertained in the family room for most of the day. AND WITHOUT THE WIGGLES!!

Speaking of Turkeys (sort of), I got a 19.3 lb turkey for just us. I know right?? Ridiculously huge. But it was the same price as a 16 lb turkey. might as well get the big one and find creative ways to eat turkey for a week (or more). Anyone have great leftover turkey recipes?? Guess I'll be spending some time on pinterest :)

I only got a couple of pictures of Jocelyn today, they were all action shots so we don't have a pretty Thanksgiving picture this year. I'm gonna try and get us all dressed up this weekend since Mike has off and get a family picture in. Would just be fun to compare to last years. I'll try and post pictures tomorrow.

I know, super long post without pictures is NO fun. Pictures will follow soon!!! I'll try my best. =)