Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Solo Parenting Beach Day

This weekend, I did something crazy. I took the kids to the beach by myself. Hubs was at work and I was determined to not sit around all weekend and have the kids go crazy. We woke up on Saturday and it was raining. Of course it always rains on my side of the island so I was hoping that it wouldn't be raining at the beach. We ate breakfast and I got everyone packed and loaded into the car. We took off driving towards the beach.

As we drove, it was still raining.



It was raining until we took the exit to the resort area and I breathed a sigh of relief. We parked and headed to swim.

Because of the weather and because the beach was kind of under construction, we were the only ones there! It was great. I put on the kid's swim vests and got to playing.

I am admittedly not a beach bunny. I'm usually done after 30 minutes but Hubs usually forces us to stay longer. I purposely didn't take my phone or watch so we could just play. And we stayed for over an hour and half! I was starting to get board but the kids kept me on my toes and then, they suddenly decided it was time to go.

So, we packed back up and headed home. Blueberry fell asleep on the drive home (2 hours before her normal nap time) and despite my efforts to wake her, she was racked. Piglet and I got McDonald's drive-through and ate a nice lunch while Blueberry slept.

Once she woke up, she finished my fries because McDonald's gave me ALL THE FRIES EVER and we went about our day. The were exhausted by bedtime and were asleep by 7:15.

Parenting win!

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Monday, September 29, 2014

How to Make the Perfect Steak

Let me tell you a little story about steak. It's delicious yes and most people would say to make it a good one, you've got to grill it. Well my friends, I am here to tell you that you don't. I realize that not grilling a steak may seem crazy to some but stay with me and you'll see, it's so delicious.

So, what do you need then? A cast iron skillet, some butter, some steak seasoning, and a steak (I used ribeye). That's it. No sauces. No dry rubs. No charcoal, no propane, no. grill.

Here are your 4 steps to steak perfection.

Step One: Preheat the oven for 450 degrees. Then heat up your skillet and add some butter. Once the butter is melted, move on to step 2.

Step Two: Put the steak in the pan, season on both sides and sear.

Step Three: Once the steak is seared on both sides, place the entire thing in the oven for 7-10 minutes.

Step Four: Let the steak rest and the eat.

Seriously, That's it. It's delicious. I left mine in for closer to 10 minutes so my steak was medium-well but if you want it more pink (my mom for example likes her steak to moo at her) just keep it in the oven for less time.

I know it's getting cold for the rest of the world (mostly) so I thought I would share a (better) way to cook up a steak. No one grills when it's cold anyway.

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Friday, September 26, 2014

Do You Love Yourself?

Do you love yourself? The way you look? Honestly. I know everyone has something that they don't like about themselves and that's okay sometimes but spending time focusing on the bad isn't good for anyone.

When we went to the Dole Plantation, Piglet and I took a picture together and when I uploaded the picture to my computer, I immediately hated it.

All I could see was the negative, how chunky I looked. I thought "Piglet looks so cute and there I am, all blah." But I uploaded it to Facebook anyway and do you know what?

It was one of the most liked pictures that I had uploaded that day. One friend even commented and said how beautiful it was. Despite what I thought of the picture, other people thought we looked great.

It's no surprise that I do not look like a supermodel. I'm only 5'4", I wouldn't even qualify. And yes, I have had 2 kids so no, I am not a size 2. I've never been a size 2. I will probably never be a size 2. And that's okay. Because there is so much more to me than just being skinny or "Hollywood pretty."

I've been trying to focus on other aspects of my appearance. I've been trying to style my hair (hard when I spend most days in a bun for work). I've been wearing make-up . I've been trying to wear stylish clothes - even if pj pants are more comfortable. Sometimes, it's helpful to focus on the good stuff instead of wallowing in what you think is wrong.

Because chances are, no one else thinks it's wrong.

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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Dole Plantation

One of the things on my bucket list for Hawaii was to go to the Dole Plantation. I don't even like pineapple that much but pineapples are famous in Hawaii and the Dole Plantation is like 15 minutes from our house so why wouldn't we go?

Pineapple Express

We went early on a Sunday morning and decided that we would do the train ride tour. Blueberry's baby sitter took her there a few weeks ago and Blueberry will not stop saying "all aboard! choo-choo!" so we figured that it would be fun for her and we were hoping Piglet would like the train too. As it turned out, they both enjoyed it. We got there within 5 minutes of the next train so we got our tickets and loaded up.

the best we could get of all of us

The train ride itself is about 20 minutes long and it says you travel through a "working plantation"  but all the farm equipment that was out in the fields were all rusted over and had plants growing all around them. I don't think it's actually working anymore. But it was cool to see the different plants. There's more than just pineapple growing; there was coco, bananas, sugar cane, mango, and a bunch of other stuff.

Along the train ride

Around the "train station" is a small pineapple garden. It was pretty cool to see how pineapple grows up close. Hubs had wanted to grow his own pineapple but they can take 2-3 years to bear a fruit and we won't be on the island that long so we decided that buying pineapple would be the best way to keep up in pineapple supply. It's crazy that they grow in little bushes, 1 fruit at a time. Can you imagine how many pineapple plants it takes to keep the world supplied with pineapple? I guess that's why Dole bought AN ISLAND to use (now, they grow most of their pineapple in the Philippines).

pineapple plants

At the end of the train ride, they had these neat cutout picture things. I tried to get Piglet to do it but my camera was too slow. Blueberry enjoyed it so we got a couple good ones with her.


Overall, it was pretty fun and only took about an hour and a half. The line was crazy so we didn't get any Dole Whip but that's okay, because we already have plans to go back!

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Monday, September 22, 2014

Skillet Nachos

Are you ready for a delicious meal? I know I am. I always am. And you know what's really good? Nachos. Cheesy. salty, nummy. A few weeks back, I finally got a cast iron skillet and I have been cooking a bunch of stuff on it but these nachos are high on the list.

First of all, cook up some ground beef and season with your favorite taco seasoning. While the meat is cooking, preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Once the meat is done and the oven is hot, get out your skillet. Layer some tortilla chips down and then lay on the cheese. I used Kraft Mexican Blend with Philly Cheese blended in. I would have liked to use some Mexican cheese but Hawaii is seriously lacking in the queso department. Oh well. Sprinkle the meat on top and then place the skillet in the oven until the cheese is melty. I meant to add black beans but the kids like to choose 5 pm as the time to go crazy so I forgot to add them. Next time.

Once the cheese is melted and the chips are warm, get ready to devour them. I added black olives and avocado to mine; Hubs had black olives and jalepenos. But you can add anything you want. We would have added salsa but the jar in our fridge was pineapple salsa (what?) so we left it off. I'm sure adding some lettuce would have made it healthier but we were having NACHOS FOR DINNER.

Anyway, what are your favorite nacho toppings?

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