Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Monthly Meal Planning

 My sweet baby boy #1 is about to start school in just a few short weeks I will pause here for the dramatic gasp from all you fellow mamma's  and we are not talking about a couple of hours of preschool a week here folks... I am talking about the sending my little baby almost 3 year old ON A BUS (that has a car seat of course) to SCHOOL kind of school (long half days for the month of July and then full school days when school starts back up in Sept)!! This is going to change the dynamics in our family swiftly and I wasnt quite prepared for this for a couple more years yet! Am I really old enough to have a kid in school? lol   Anyways on the point of this post!

I have always despised planning and felt like it boxed me in! I see the potential benefits this type of planning has dont get me wrong  but even now the thought of planning stuff in detail  leaves me feeling slightly claustrophobic...but like I said above soon I will be dealing with school schedules, lunch packing, ect ... and I have to face the facts...as I am sure many of you moms out there can attest to, that saying "the baby ate my brain" well thats totally TRUE! and it gets worse the more of them you have! Dont you wish someone would have warned you about THAT one? Its either that or my brain is aging at a peculiarly fast pace ... so I am sticking with the first option! Thus I am diving head first into this planning mayhem and trying to remind myself that its just a PLAN if I feel like changing it ... whoopty freakin do! :P 

The first thing I wanted to do was try out monthly meal planning ! I know a lot of people who do this and I always thought... :O .... how do you plan a whole month at a time when I can hardly pick out enough for a week! But I have to tell you it really wasnt horrible - granted I havnt actually implemented it yet... (coming July 1st) But I honestly thought it was going to be this mind numbing project to put together where I stared at recipes for DAYS! But no... it only took me a couple of hours to whip together!

Step one: 
I created a word document with a list of main course dishes we like or I have been wanting to try! I shot for aprox 31 of them for now but I hope to expand on this list as we go! (If the dish was from a website I included the link next to it) 

Step two:
I downloaded a fee calendar online and using word arranged my dishes in an appealing order (of course keeping in mind I will probably still juggle things around some within the week) You can view our dinner menu here   but dont judge me on the health factor.....lol its a work in progress and I try to work in at least a couple meals a week that I know the picky little Mr. will eat! 

Step three:
This is to be completed yet but I am hoping to plan out lunches as well (at least for Owen on school days ) 

Also stay tuned for a little crafty project involving a meal planning board that will make this even easier!

I linked up to Wow Me Wednesday 

Friday, June 24, 2011

Shaving Cream Bath Paints

Fact : kids LOVE shaving cream! Take it from someone who sprayed bottles and bottles of the stuff into sensory tables (and smelled like a man for the rest of the day) for years before her own little darlings came along! They love to draw in it, squish it, smell it... (it smells like daddy is a common response! hehe) Well all of that is fine and dandy unless your my kid! I was so excited to bring home my huge can of shaving cream so we could go to town in our own sensory table.. = FAIL!! He hated it and he actually cried "OUCH OUCH" over and over until I got it all off him (which he often says when he dosnt like the sensation of something). But I wasnt ready to give up on my trusty shaving cream all together yet!! Especially considering that I currently try to work 3 tactile sensory activities into each day for him as part of his sensory diet! ( we need a little variety around here!) I have seen this done a few places in blog land and its soooo easy I had to try it! I think it was a huge success, but you be the judge!

here is what you need : shaving cream, food coloring, new/very clean paint brush, containers for the "paints"   ( I really liked using these disposable pie plates because they floated in the tub without flipping over) 

place some shaving cream and a few drops of food coloring in your selected dish and mix them up well 

Add tubby and naked child : 

 and enjoy! 
A little side note here : the food coloring did not stain my tub at all. It just washed down the drain with a little rinsing, the blue color did how ever turn the little guy a nice shade of smurf that had me freaking out a little ... but it came off with a wash cloth and some soap ;) good thing we were already splish splashin eh? lol

Sumo's Sweet Stuff

Friday, June 17, 2011

Father's Day Gift :D

My hubby is my hero! He is probably the best husband and father I have ever met... and no I am not just saying that because he's sitting here watching me type this...He really is that amazing! :) So when I came across this Hero Supply Kit I knew it was just the right thing to make for my amazing yet incredibly hard to buy gifts for husband! :D

So here we go!
 This was super easy to do and really easy to customize! oh happy day has labels that you can print if you wish.. I liked the idea of making my own so I customize the wording slightly and play with the colors a little. I just used exel and inserted shapes and word art to my liking. I purchased printable sticker paper from the all mighty hobby lobby! (note to self: realize when you pick up the one package thats half the price... there are also half the amount of pages...good thing I had JUST enough to finish my project!) and then printed my labels out.

I chose to use things I know DH really likes and based my labels off of that. I picked up a package of clear treat bags (25 for $1.99 I believe) and used twisty ties to close them ( I figured they were a little more "manly" than ribbon) 

(this is a bottle of Jones cream soda with the label removed)

This box was purchased from hobby lobby for $1.29 if your like me and dont have the right size just laying around!(I wanted it to look like it was a real package that was mailed vs using a wooden box like the original) 

I had intended just to write on the box but it had 2 lovely very large recycling graphics on the top flaps...  

Happy Father's Day to all those wonderful daddies out there! <3

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Just keep swimming just keep swimming

I just realized I havnt posted in almost a month now...so I wanted to let you know I am still here! I have just been  wading through as many yahoo group, websites, and print outs with info about sensory processing disorder that I can get my hands on in my "free" time these days! This past month or so has been a whirlwind of emotions and information and great growth in our family!

 The successes Owen has achieved in the past month have amazed us! ( You know there have been big changes when the receptionist at the chiropractor comments on how much your child has "opened up and is talking more" )He's making noise CONSTANTLY now! ( I almost caught myself telling him to be quiet recently while he was playing and jabbering/ signing to himself because the noise was just irritating me at that moment....and then just before I opened my highly annoyed mouth I stopped dead in my tracks, gave him a big hug and then walked away and cried for a minute).Owen is also starting to be able to communicate complete thoughts between signing and using words! He was talking to my mom on the phone the other day and she clearly understood that he was telling her that I was feeding the baby! Another HUGE accomplishment is that Owen actually ate what I served for dinner 4 consecutive days in a row so far this week including meat! Previously he would refuse dinner at least 85% of the time! He is also sleeping so much better! He's gone from waking at least once a night pretty much every night and crying for hours before he fell asleep to falling asleep peacefully and staying asleep almost every night! Even the way he's playing has changed for the better! He dosnt throw things nearly as much and is beginning to use some pretend play as well! :D

 So you might be asking what did you change? He probably seems like a pretty normal (although rambunctious) little boy to any outsider! Well Owen is not just like any other little boy... He is a child with special needs, and I am the mother of a special needs child. Yes I just said that and I know it might upset some family and close friends to hear that... but it is the truth and I no longer have the time or desire to tip toe around people's feelings on this subject. I know that may sound harsh, but it is not a terrible thing! It is simply a fact that we have come to accept! We are moving forward and thriving in this new journey in our lives! I've said before that Owen has an educational Autism diagnosis and I have also mentioned Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD for future reference). I spend a large portion of my day (sometimes my entire day other than caring for the other little Mr.) helping Owen do his Sensory diet activities. These activities/ therapies are what have caused his recent great successes and I am so proud of the leaps he as made in the past few weeks! All of this is a lot to take in and it pretty much consumes my time other than the normal everyday things that need to get done, so chances are this blog will be more frequented with posts about SPD and Owen's progress than with crafts and recipes for a while! I also am having a hard time finding blogs of other parents dealing with SPD so I feel like I should keep posting about this topic since I read a new statistic yesterday that 1 in 20 kids are being diagnosed with this disorder ! I know many of you are curious about whats going with Owen as well so I think this will be a good place to keep you updated the best that I can! Please feel free to ask me any questions! I will try my very best to explain them! We are so blessed to be the parents of this amazing little boy and I cant even tell you the relief it brings me as a mother that there are things I can do to help him succeed in life!

Here is a great link for you if your interested in more info on SPD or sensory diets: