Wednesday, May 25, 2011

22 weeks & a PSA

I know there are a couple of you who anxiously await a new picture every week. I take them. I do. I just forget to get them on the blog! Sorry about that.

Anyway, last Friday, I took Anna for a weight check. She's at 13 pounds now! She gained 2 pounds in a month; 3 in three months. Yea!! Her spitting up has decreased dramatically and is even better now that I've started giving her gas drops. (Could be that she's outgrowing it a bit too.)

This picture reminds me a bit of Emily. She LOVED chewing on the flag!

So, on to the PSA. One of my biggest pet peeves is car seats. I want parents to use them correctly so their kids are safe. Not too long ago, there was an article in the Abilene Reporter News that said that Safety City did car seat inspections. I was thrilled because I didn't think there was anywhere in town that did. However, I put off going to do it. Finally, I looked on their calendar and saw that they'd had an inspection day on May 9, but didn't see any others scheduled. So, I just emailed them. Jennifer was so nice and we scheduled for her to look at my car seats this morning.

She said mine looked of the best she'd seen (whew!). The only things she could tell me were to take down the mirror we have up to see Anna (can't see her very well anyway), check on the weight limits of the LATCH in my car (some only go up to 40 pounds, so we'd have to start using the seat belt at that point, if that's the case), and that, in Texas, car seats should be replaced every 5 years, due to the extreme heat.

So, if you've never had your car seat installation inspected, go do it! It just takes about 10 minutes and they are so helpful!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

5 months

I didn't realize how much hair Emily had at 5 months, compared to Anna, but, wow! It must be an age thing that they're both leaning in the Bumbo. Love it!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Chewy Granola Bars

After I stopped eating dairy and peanuts, I discovered that my snack choices were limited. I'd enjoyed graham crackers and peanut butter. I'd enjoyed strawberry Nutrigrain bars. Both of those were out. So, I turned to granola bars only to find that the only granola bars at HEB that didn't have dairy or peanuts were the Nature Valley crunchy granola bars. Not one of my favorites, but they have worked in place of no other options.

So, I searched the internet for chewy granola bars and found this recipe on Smitten Kitchen, an adaptation of this recipe from King Arthur Flour. I've known about King Arthur Flours for many years so I figured it must be pretty good.

This recipe is very can add whatever dried fruits and nuts and just about anything else you want. Smitten Kitchen even says you could add puffed rice cereal or peanut butter. Never thought about puffed rice in a granola bar, but why not? I forgot to put the water in and it seemed just fine without it.

After tasting them tonight, I'd just make one change...about half the amount of dried fruit! I felt like I was eating a bowl of raisin bran with lots of raisins. I do like the sweetness of these and will definitely make them again. But, it's a recipe that will change until I find just the right mix of ingredients.

Here's the recipe, as I made it this time. But, as I said, I'll change it up next time I make it.

  • 1 2/3 cups quick rolled oats
  • 3/4 C granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup quick oats, processed till finely ground in a food processor or blender
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, optional
  • 2 to 3 cups dried fruits and nuts (10-15 ounces--I used 1/4 C oat bran + 1 1/2 C raisins + 1/2 C Craisins)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup + 2 T melted butter or vegetable oil
  • 2 T honey
  • 4 T corn syrup

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9"x13" pan with parchment, allowing it to go up and over two of the sides, creating a sling. Lightly grease the parchment and exposed pan.

    1) Stir together all the dry ingredients, including the fruit and nuts.

    2) In a separate bowl, whisk together the vanilla, melted butter or oil, syrup or honey, and water.

    3) Toss the wet ingredients with the dry until the mixture is evenly crumbly.

    4) Spread in the prepared pan, shaking the pan to evenly cover the bottom and patting down gently

    5) Bake the bars for 25 to 30 minutes, until they're golden brown around the edges.

    6) Remove them from the oven, loosen the edges, and cool for 5 minutes.

    7) Use a knife (or bench knife) to cut the bars while they're still warm in the pan. Carefully remove warm bars from the pan, and cool on a rack. Alternatively, remove from the pan before cutting into bars; it helps to cut in half first, then loosen the bottom of each half with a turner/spatula before turning out onto a sheet of parchment to cut into bars. (At the suggestion of Smitten Kitchen, I let mine cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then pulled the sling out and let them cool completely before trying to cut them.)

    8) Wrap bars individually to store; or place in a single layer on a plate, and cover with plastic; or store in layers with parchment in between. In humid weather, it's best to store bars in the refrigerator. They also freeze well.

    Sunday, May 15, 2011

    21 weeks

    Anna is starting to bring things to her mouth. She can find her pacifier and get it in and out of her mouth on her own. Sometimes a good thing, sometimes not! But, she's still sleeping and eating well. We'll go back this week for a weight check. Hopefully, she's gaining weight like she's "supposed to."

    Sunday, May 8, 2011

    20 weeks

    As I mentioned last week, I've been having to change our feeding routine with Anna. Unfortunately, that doesn't seem to be going well. She cries at nursing times (and only then!) a lot and I just can't seem to figure out why. Hopefully she's gaining weight, but the crying makes me sometimes wonder if nursing is still worth it. (Yes, I know it is, if I can.) Anyway, would you mind praying about that for me. I know I'm starting to stress about it.

    In happier news, Anna rolled from her back to her tummy a couple times this week. A big milestone for her!

    Today was a good Mother's Day...all four of us napped at the same time! How was yours?

    Sunday, May 1, 2011

    19 weeks

    I've already written much about this week, so I'll just let the picture speak for itself.