Monday, July 25, 2011

What's for Dinner?

I have actually enjoyed planning my weekly menu's out ahead of time. I thought it would be tedious but it's MUCH easier than running around trying to figure out what to make at 5. Found this on All Recipes. It was delicious! So easy. Especially if you already have some chicken made. I think it would be good with onions and bacon added. Might try it next time.

  • 3 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 (8 ounce) package spaghetti
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup
  • 1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chile peppers
  • 1 pound processed cheese food (eg. Velveeta)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pinch garlic powder


  1. Boil chicken in a large pot of salted water. When chicken is done, remove from pot, keeping water/broth at a boil. Shred chicken and set aside. Put spaghetti in boiling chicken broth and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until al dente. When done, drain broth.
  2. Return pot with cooked spaghetti to stove, put over low heat. Add shredded chicken, soup, diced tomatoes with chile peppers and cheese. Season with salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste. When cheese is melted, dinner is ready!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Buggy on a Budget

I really don't like to tell people that I am married to a Dr. I have heard comments such as, "Oh that must be nice to be rich" and "You are lucky you will never have to work again." Ha! Most of the population fails to realize that the average cost of medical school is nearly 200,000 dollars. And, when my husband is finished he will be pushing 40 and spent 15 years in training. This is the first year that I have stayed home. Our reasoning was that we felt it would be the best choice for our daughter and our family. When your husband works 13 hours a day that leaves you with the bills, laundry, cooking, cleaning, house maintenance, childcare, organizing schedules, car maintenance,going through mail and did I mention cooking and cleaning? Shew. So, I had no time to work. And,when you consider the cost of childcare in Houston my teaching salary was not that beneficial.
It is going to be a long hard road but I am determined to save money. My first goal in our family budget is the food bill. The first thing we have done is cut back (nearly cut out) eating out. It is hard but when you do eat out it's more rewarding! The second thing is to plan my meals ahead of time and spend less money each week at the grocery. I am learning that this takes serious time, effort and planning. Especially since I am not familiar with the stores in Houston. My starting point is to keep track of how much something costs at different stores. Then I will know where to go for the cheapest price on commonly bought items. To make it easier I have picked 3 stores that are closest to my house. I am also wondering what a good realistic budget is to feed a family of 3. Does any one have any ideas of a realistic food budget or other tips to save money at the grocery?

Friday, July 15, 2011

Say No to No!

After teaching preschool for 7 years I already understood the importance of not saying, "No!" Once Sidney was mobile I found myself saying it several times one day. I have since then made a conscious effort to "no saying no" at our house. It is difficult when you see your child about to make a huge mess, hurt themselves or hurt something in the house. I read somewhere that a toddler hears no about 400 times a day. Not only is it negative, but it weakens the meaning of the word. I am trying really hard to use redirection and positive reinforcement and save saying, "no" for emergencies when she is really is in danger. I found 2 helpful articles today and I thought I would share them.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

14 months old!

Sidney is 14 months old today! She is so much fun and has the cutest personality. She is a very happy and active baby. She loves swimming, Elmo, music, taking walks and putting her toys in any hiding spot she can find. She can say, Dada, car, ball, dog, quack quack, mama, hi, circle and is starting to repeat more and more words. She loves to run and walk on her own. Her favorite food right now is banana. Her activities right now are going to the library and checking out books, going to music class and going to see her friends in the wobbly walkers nursery at church. We are going to say goodbye to the bedtime bottle this week... wish us luck! We are a little behind but we are ok with that since the move through us all off a bit. Her 15 month checkup is next month. I am very excited about her new pediatrician. Living near the biggest med center in the world definitely has it's perks!

Here is a picture of me and my little buddy this time last year.

Here is a picture from last week. How fast they change!
Love you baby Sidney!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Howdy from Houston!

Wow! Things have been busy at the Alexander's... we made it to Houston!

Shew. All the boxes are unpacked! I actually sat down yesterday and took a breath. My first impressions of Houston are:
1. HOT
2. Terrible bugs
3. Flat
4. Not pretty like KY
5. No KY sports here or horses :)

Ok, so those are all negative. But true. On a positive note Houston has:
1. Palm trees
2. Shopping (any store you want)
3. Mexican food
4. Great parks
5. Great museums

We have not gotten settled at all other than getting the house organized. This is mainly because we are living with 1 car. Horrible! Craig started his job last week at Texas Children's Hospital, which is the biggest pediatric hospital in the country. Wow! On his first day we dropped him off. Sidney did not want to wake up and was a grump all day. Then when he was done it was her bedtime so you can imagine how that went. I have let him take the car since then. So, we have been stuck in the house. I mean stuck. Nowhere to go and nothing to do. We can't even venture outside due to the 100 degree temps. So our first priority this weekend is to buy a car!

We have been attending a church that we really like and Sidney is going to start a music class there next week. I have signed up for the JR League transfer class and it starts in August. So I feel like we are taking baby steps to meet some people.

I love being home with her and having more time to help Craig stay organized. It's not an easy job! My goal is to post once a week. Someone make me! I will try my best.