Monday, December 31, 2012

Menu Monday

I'mmm BACK!!!

Did you think I fell off the face of the Earth?  I didn't.  Instead, I took the week off to spend with my family.  It was wonderful.  We all sat around the fire and sang Kumbaya.  We braided hemp necklaces and nursed each others' babies.  It was glorious.

In all seriousness, we did enjoy our family time.  We ate way too much, slept way too little, and crammed as many activities into a short amount of time as we could.  We tried to give ourselves a Holiday Hangover.  Although, I don't think that's possible.

I am ready to get into 2013.  Steven and I have some BIG goals for this year that we'll be sharing with you.  Don't worry!  None of the goals involve expanding our family.  We're good with the Torres Party of Five title, plus my sanity level is at it's max capacity.  We wouldn't want me to go nutty or anything.

I digress.

We have some BIG goals for this upcoming year and we're really excited about them.  I hope you look forward to this upcoming year, and prepare to better yourself and your future.  After all, none of us want to be the same old, same old.  We want to do better and get better.

If one of your goals is to try out some new recipes, then I have some for you, via Pinterest, on this week's menu.  I hope you likey!

Monday-Rosemary Chicken, Potatoes, and Salad
Tuesday-Chicken Noodle Soup and Grilled Cheese
Wednesday-Italian Layer Bake and Green Beans
Thursday-Balsamic Chicken, Peas, and Cheesy Biscuits
Friday-Crockpot Beer Chicken, Steamed Broccoli, and Buttered Wheat Bread
Saturday-Chicken Tacos and Black Bean Fritters
Sunday-Dinner @ Mom's

Friday, December 21, 2012

For The Guys...And Always for the Ladies!

Since October I've added a whole new dimension to my workout.  It's called Get My Butt Up Way Too Early and Make Myself Work.  I absolutely hate when the alarm goes off in the morning.  Seriously.  I get mad.  Then I pull myself from bed, throw on my work stuff, and head to Boot Camp.

In all honesty, Boot Camp should be renamed to Killer Circuit/Personal Training Workout Session.  My friend and instructor is this tiny cutie patootie blond thing that couldn't hurt a fly, but yet has you busting out one more burpee even though five burpees ago you thought you were going to puke.

This F.I.T. Boot Camp, in addition to running, has me getting back my muscles and strength.  It has me getting back my mental toughness.  It has me getting back my winner's attitude.  It has me getting back my 'I Can Do This' mindset.  I love that.  Hate waking up, but it feels good to feel strong again.

If you are woman, this is for you.  I don't care if you haven't worked out in days, months, years, or ever.  You need this for you.  You won't regret it.  And BOYS, don't feel left out!!!

F.I.T Boot Camp added Mens' Sessions! 

After so many husbands saw the hard work their wives were putting in and their amazing results, the guys starting whining  asking for Erica to head up a Men's Boot Camp.  She was up for the challenge!  On Thursday, Steven and a few other men got up and headed her way.  She worked them until half of the guys were out on the lawn puking.  I'd call that a successful workout!  

Needless to say, she knows how to get you to push past your best.  She knows how to encourage you.  She is someone who is in your corner.  F.I.T Boot Camp is so much better than joining a gym and hoping you are getting a good workout.  This is like getting yourself on The Biggest Loser.  You have someone tailoring workouts to hit all of your muscle groups.  You have someone who will keep you accountable.  You will also have a group of people supporting you as well.  I'm so thankful I am apart of something like this.  Now here's your chance to be apart of it too.

Erica has put together pricing packages to help you out. Everyone loves a good deal and she has lowered her prices to give you just that.  Here's the new classes and new pricing for 2013...

Erica will also hold two sessions for Ladies the week of Christmas.  One on Monday, December 24th (yep, Christmas Eve) and one on Friday, December 28th.  Each class during the holiday week is only $5/class.  Sorry boys, you'll have to wait until after the first of the year to get your puke on.  (BTW Ladies, I have yet to see one of the girls puke and we do the same workouts as the men). Sorry, just had to throw that in because I'm ornery!

If you are interested in contacting Erica, here's her info...

F.I.T Boot Camp Phone Number: 918.361.5255

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Christmas Goodies

Please raise you right hand and repeat after me,

I, (state your name), do hereby declare that I will wave my Calorie Wand over any and all Christmas Goodies.  This will dissolve the calories in any special treats during the Holidays, thus allowing me to enjoy all of the below deliciousness.

Whew!  I'm glad that's out of the way.  Now onto the good stuff!

Torres Family Christmas Goodies

Chocolate Mint Oreo Cookies

{Pic via Two Peas and Their Pod}
For the record, this is the most expensive cookie I have ever made.  So many ingredients that I didn't have. 
Peanut Butter Clusters
English Toffee
Peanut Butter Pretzel Bites
Candied Pecans
Sugar Cookies

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Traditional Christmas Dinner

Every other year we host Christmas Dinner at our home for our families and their extended families.  It's such a fun time with all the kids running around enjoying their new toys and crashing out on the couch from the day's excitement.  I love Christmas.

The last time we hosted Christmas Dinner, Steven requested a special Puerto Rican menu.  I love how he requests and I make.  So this white girl got down on some traditional PR dishes.

As I mentioned yesterday, Steven hacked into my Pinterest account.  I walked in Sunday morning to find him and the iPad at the kitchen counter.  He was saying things like, "Oh yeah, that's what I'm talking about," and "Mmm Hmmm.  Give me some of that."  If I didn't know him so well I would have been worried, but I knew exactly what he was doing.  He immediately looked up at me and said, "Can you get me some paper?  I'm making the Christmas Menu."

And without further ado, I'd like to introduce our Christmas Menu made by Steven Torres...

Torres Family Christmas Dinner

Family Recipe Stuffing Cakes
Vinaigrette Salad

Tomorrow I'll share the Baking Menu.  I have to admit, I'm getting really excited about Christmas.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Menu Monday

I hereby declare this week Menu Week...and Baking Week.

Twas the week before Christmas,
 and all through the house,
Not a creature was stirring.  
Not even mouse.

Except for Amanda 
who was covered in flour.
She didn't have time,
no time for a shower.

Hmmm...maybe that's not the right lines???  But one thing is true.  I will be baking our Christmas goodies this week and sharing, quite possibly, the most expensive cookie I have ever made in my entire life.  Thanks be to Steven Torres.  He hacked my Pinterest account and came up with his own special Christmas Dinner and Christmas goody list.  Apparently, this man forgot that I have a grocery budget.  You will see his crazy antics tomorrow and Wednesday when I share the goody menu and dinner menu.

Today I have my budget friendly menu for you.  Since I was buying specialty ingredients like dark cocoa, mint chips, mint Oreos, and pecans. I had to get real creative and shop my pantry.

Monday-Pizza Bread and Salad
Tuesday-BBQ Meatballs, Au Gratin Potatoes, Steamed Broccoli
Wednesday-Chicken Taquitos, Brown Rice with Peppers and Onions, Refried Beans
Thursday-Dinner @ The Kueny's
Friday-Baked Chicken, Cheesy Broccoli Casserole, Buttered Bread
Saturday-Sausage, Egg Skillet and Cinnamon Toast
Sunday-Chicken Noodle Soup and Crescents

Friday, December 14, 2012

Hold On

There are days I feel like I'm burning at both ends.  Housework, kids' schedules, babies, school, cooking, it's a bit much at times.  Who am I kidding?  It's a bit much all the time.

I'm sure you've noticed that somedays, like today, you come here to read the latest craziness of my life and it's the same old, same old.  Nothing new has been posted.  I hate that.  I really enjoy writing about nothing and sharing that nothing with everybody, but at the end of the day it's either sleep or write.  Hmmm...not really a tough one for me.  Sleep wins.

Of course there are other things that keep me from writing blog posts during the day.  Those things are Thing 1 (Steven), Thing 2 (Little Man), Thing 3 (Little Miss), Thing 4 (Chubby Cheekers), Thing 5 (Chunkey Monkey), and Thing 6 (Mr. Fluffy Pants).  Caring for 6 people is A LOT of work, and I've found myself at times keeping myself busy with things that don't really matter in place of spending time on things that do really matter.

A few months back a friend posted something about spending time with your kids today because tomorrow they will be older, and you will never ever get that time back.  For some reason that hit me so hard.  The kids are growing up so much faster than I would like.  Although I celebrate each of their stages, there is a bit of a sadness that we are headed to new uncharted territory where newborn coos and snuggles are no longer.

It also made me think about how frequently I use the phrase, "Hold on."

Mommy, you want to play paper dolls? Hold on, Honey.  Let me finish unloading the dishwasher.

Mommy, let's play basketball. Hold on.  I just need to put the clothes in the dryer.

Mommy, you want to play a game? Hold on. I need to call Daddy for something real quick.

I do feel like keeping an orderly house is important for our family to function properly, but there will be a day where the requests to play will cease.  So today, I'm working on removing "Hold on" from my vocabulary.  I'm working on keeping myself busy with what's really important.  My kids should know that my world is revolved around three God, my husband, and them.  In that order.

I guess I'm here to say, that I'm sorry if there is not a post everyday.  I'm working on writing because I love to write and not because I need to post something.  I'm working on keeping busy with what's really important, and these guys are really important...

And just for the record, Little Man's face is generally how I look throughout the day.  Such a happy thought, right?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Chubby Cheekers~10 Month Edition

In about 4 days I'm going to be 10 months old.  Double digits, Ladies.  Double digits.  Life has been good for me.  I recently attended my first Thanksgiving.  It was wonderful.  Wonderful despite the massive diarrhea I picked up while traveling.  

However, I don't want to share about my nasties.  I just want to share about all of my latest achievements.  First off, I peed on the potty for the first time.  Yes, I'm 10 months old and peed on the potty.  Mommy had stripped my down before bath and I crawled myself right over to the potty and peed on it.  So I didn't actually pee IN it.  Just on it.  Mommy wasn't so excited about my achievement.  Sometimes I feel she doesn't get me.  I thought it was super funny.  I bet Daddy would have congratulated me.

I've also been toiling with the idea of walking.  For a few weeks now I've been building my balance skills by letting go of furniture, and last night I took my first step.  Just one.  It was a little overrated. I mean, I'm a master crawler and my booty looks so cute when I get going really fast.  It just shakes back and forth.  Sometimes, just sometimes, when I'm in a really good mood, I shake my head in conjunction with my booty and that is the cutest.  No need to be modest.  It just is and I know it.

Besides achieving greatness I have to admit I get myself into some sticky situations.  I just get a little curious at times and I don't yet have all the reasoning skills to decide if it's dangerous or not.  So here I am just crawling through barstools and my head gets stuck, or my booty doesn't make it all the way through.  It's really rough at times, but you know what?  I'm the kind of guy that lives on the edge.  Just look what happened when I tried to push Sissy's baby stroller around...

It may be a crazy life, but it's the life I lead.

Chubby Cheekers

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Saving Money On Christmas

Every year we save hundreds of dollars just by taking time to look for coupons before shopping.  We have a good budget for Christmas, but by most standards it's pretty conservative.  Here is our list of people to buy for each year...
  • Little Man
  • Little Miss
  • Chubby Cheekers
  • Chunkey Monkey
  • Mr. Fluffy Pants
  • Rene
  • Lindsay
  • Steven's Dad
  • Steven's Dad's Wife
  • Steven's Dad's Son
  • Steven's Mom
  • My Mom
  • My Mom's Husband
  • My Niece, Jasmine
  • Little Man's Teacher
  • Steven's Admin Assitant
  • Steven's Boss
  • Steven
  • Me
All of these gifts we purchase for less than $650.  It has to be under $650 because we use cash envelopes.  Once the cash is gone, it's gone and we are out of luck.  Therefore, I've had to get really good at making the most of our money.

{Some of the coupons I cut from mailers and ads}

First off, I put the designated amount of money in each envelope, write what we want to get each person, and the max amount I can spend.  I do pick items that I know are reasonable for the budget.  For example, Little Man would like a Wii.  However, his budget is $115.  A Wii just isn't going to happen.  Instead, we guided him into other ideas that would be more appropriate for our budget, yet allowing him to be happy when opening his presents on Christmas morning.  

After dividing up the cash, I begin coupon searching.  When I find coupons, I cut/print them out, and stash them in the envelopes with the cash.  I find these coupons by using Retail Me Not, signing up for email newsletters, looking at coupons sites such as Money Saving Mom, and searching ads in the paper.  Once the coupons are tucked safe and sound, I write on the outside of the envelope what coupons I have so I don't forget to use them.
In addition to coupons, I also use an app called ShopKick.  It allows you to collect 'points' just by walking into stores and browsing through their app booklets.  Inside the booklets, they offer coupons, sales, and deals.  I really love this app.  I have only been using it since October and I have already redeemed my points for almost $10 in Target giftcards.  If you are interested in earning points faster, shoot me your email (wispclips@hotmail(dot)com) and I'll invite you under me (It allows you and me to collect points faster).  On top of ShopKick, I take advantage of rewards programs like ToysRUs'.  

Once I have all of our coupons in order and the cash divided up, Steven and I take one day and get all the shopping done for our kids and family members.  

As an example, here is one of our stops at Target...

Spend $50, get a $10 giftcard
Save $5 when you spend $50
$2 ShopKick giftcard
$5 ShopKick giftcard

What we purchased: (estimates of pricing...too lazy to get the receipt)
Ken Doll $7 (on sale)
Girl's Robe $10 (on sale)
Don't Break the Ice $8 (on sale)
Preschool Farm Uno $8 (on sale)
Brave DVD $17

Total: $50

How We Paid:
I first handed the cashier the coupon for the free $10 gc since I spent $50.
Then I gave the $5 off $50.
Then the ShopKick gc's totaling $7.

This brought our total down to $38, plus I had a $10 giftcard to use on my next transaction.

I immediately used the giftcard on my second transaction to purchase Chubby Cheekers some Robeez type shoes.  They were a little over $10 so I had to pay $4 out of pocket.

After we're finished, I keep all my receipts because if what I purchased goes on sale within a few weeks, I take my receipt in and get a price adjustment.  This usually allows me to get around $20 back each year.

This is just one example of about 10 stops we made on our Big 'Ol Shopping Day.  What was great was not one Christmas item was purchased without a coupon.  I didn't add up our total savings, but my estimate is I saved just as much as we spent.  Man, that feels good!  Plus, we were able to get everything we were shopping for.  Even better.  After all, we want to give good gifts to our family.  We just don't want to go in debt doing it.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Menu Monday

Birthday dinner #1, Grocery shopping, 4.5 hours of Christmas shopping, church, birthday breakfast, make a cake, more Christmas shopping, and birthday dinner #2.  It was a busy, now I'm so stinkin' tired now,  weekend.  At the end of the day, though, I have a very happy 34 year old husband and that makes me happy.

Here's the menu..

Monday-Chili and Corn Casserole
Tuesday-Chicken Parmigiana, Green Beans, The Bread
Wednesday-Beef Tator Bake, Honey Butter Bread
Thursday-Southwest Roll Ups, Salad
Friday-Cresent Ring, Steamed Broccoli
Saturday-Christmas Train
Sunday-Dinner at Mom's

Friday, December 7, 2012

Proud Parents

You see this guy...

Well, he won an award.
An award for responsibility.
Only two kids were chosen per class.
He makes us proud.
And because he makes us proud I'm going to post 3 pictures of the same thing.
That's just how we roll.
Loud and Proud.

 Little Man with his amazing teacher.

 Daddy's turn with the award winner.
(Chubby Cheekers, contain your excitement please.)

My turn with my boy...and princess.

Besides Little Man winning the Responsibility Award, there is something else that warms our hearts. The majority of his friends have won awards previously for cooperation and respect.  This means he is keeping good company.  We want him to be kind to all, but spend quality time with others that have hearts like his.  

Little Man, you make us proud.  You are a good leader for your siblings.  We love you.

Mom and Dad

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

It's About Giving

Recently I signed up with Compassion International as an Assignment Blogger.  It's their way of getting the message out of what they do and getting others active in assisting people all over the world.

Giving has always been on my priority list.  Even in times where our cash flow is limited, we give.  This isn't for a 'well done' or a nice pat on the back.  In fact, it embarrasses me a bit when giving outside of our usual tithe.  I don't know why.  It just does.

Look, already I'm getting off topic here!

One of the blogging topics was to answer the following question:

Why do you give?

I kind of thought, "Well, duh!" to this question, but then I really started thinking about why do I give to the organizations I give to.  A few days ago, I entered a photo contest through a local business, Elliott Roofing.  If my photo gets the most likes, they will donate $500 to the charity of my choice.  

I was right on this contest.  All I had to do was enter a funny Christmas photo to get $500 donated to a charity.  How simple is that?  The hard part was choosing a charity.  

My eyes see so many needs daily.  If I had unlimited cash flow, I could work all day blessing people and still not make a dent in meeting all the needs out there. This breaks me heart.  However, two needs areas that weigh on my heart are those who cannot provide the basic needs for their children and child trafficking.  Often times, my extra money goes to three organizations who work diligently and responsibly to alleviate people suffering from the above mentioned travesties.

In the end, I chose Samaritan's Purse to receive the $500 if I win.  Specifically to build a freshwater well for a community and an in home water filtration system for one family. I have to say even though this was my final choice, I still feel a tug on my heart for the other organizations.  Again, so many people with so many needs.

This is where I'm asking for your help.  In this season of giving, it is so easy to get tunnel vision while checking off people on our gift lists. Although it is wonderful to give to those we love, it is also wonderful to give to those we don't even know.  

That same question I was asked on my blogging assignment, "Why do you give?", is the same question I am going to ask you...

Why do you give?

I'm also going to challenge you to add another person(s) to your list.  Someone you don't even know.  You can even do this from the comfort of your own home.  All you have to do is click on the link below, and chose a gift that will alter the life of one stranger.  Not just bring temporary happiness, but a true life change.  I can't think of anything better this holiday season.

Here's the link:

And since you are already on the World Wide Web, you should go like this photo on Elliott Roofing's page...
After all, special ingredients in cookies is always long as you aren't eating them ;)

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Christmas Tree Lights: A Life Lesson

About four or five years ago, Steven and I jumped on the artificial tree bandwagon.  After numerous years of our children dining on the fine tastings of leftover tree needles, we felt it a wise decision.  Since we were going artificial we went all out and purchased a pre-lit tree.

It is quite beautiful and super easy to put together.  Even easier to disassemble.  It has made our Christmas decorating quicker.  Until this year.

This past weekend Steven dragged the tree out of the attic and we put it together.  We started this little project around 7:00pm and the kids were anxiously awaiting the moment they would get to decorate the tree.  We figured it was a Saturday night and the kids could stay up a little later.  It wouldn't take too long to let them decorate a bit, and we could have them in bed by 9:00.

That would have been in a perfect world.  Instead, we put the tree together and found that our tree had a nice little pattern going on.  The pattern went like this...lights, no lights, lights, no lights, lights, no lights.  Wonderful.  Great. Dandy.  Steven and I were so frustrated.  Eventually, we told the kids we would have to figure it out in the morning.  They were bummed, but understood.

As we were putting Little Man to bed and he was saying his bedtime prayers, he prayed for our tree's lights to work.  He loves Christmas time and all the decorations.  This was super important to him.  It made me pretty sad.

After the kids were in bed I got a little angry.  We spent our hard earned money on this tree and I felt like this was an attack on our finances.  So Steven and I prayed too.  About a Christmas tree.  Yes, I realize how crazy that sounds.  BUT, guess what?  It worked.

The next morning Steven and I decided there had to be short somewhere since there was such a distinct pattern.  We wiggled almost every bulb in the sections that were out.  Doing so allowed us to fix the problem.  Was it time consuming?  Yes.  Was it tedious?  Yes.  Was it worth it?  Yes.

I thought about how easy it would have been to just chunk the tree and go purchase a new one.  It would have been the easiest of the two options.  However, it would have also been us spending an minimum of $100 on a new tree. Instead, we problem solved and saved ourselves our hard earned money.  It was the right thing to do for us.

My life lesson is this...

Life has one guarantee.  There will be problems.  Lots of them.  We can either take the time to fix them, or sweep them under the rug.  Fixing them is much more satisfying.  

Monday, December 3, 2012

Menu Monday

I'm really working hard to be a slacker here, and I think I'm succeeding.  A super late Menu Monday and it's a pretty bad one at that.  I only had to come up with 4 meals.  The other 3 are provided by a date night and two birthday dinners for this really great man.  A great man who is turning 34 and so is his brother.  A great man who I met when he was 18.  He has definitely grown into a fine specimen.

So here's the slacker menu...

Monday-Oven Baked Fajitas and Corn Saute
Tuesday-Baked Chicken, Rice Pilaf, Green Beans
Wednesday-Meatloaf, Potatoes Au Gratin, Salad
Thursday-Pot Roast!!!
Friday-Birthday Dinner #1
Saturday-DATE DAY!
Sunday-Birthday Dinner #2

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Cheap Decorations

It's no secret my love affair with Pinterest.  It makes my life so simple. One place with all the websites to help cook, organize, save money, plan parties, and inspire me to update and decorate my house.  It's an amazing, amazing thing.

Last Christmas I saw an idea of using tomato cages and a string of lights to make outdoor ornamental Christmas trees.  There was one problem.  Tomato cages aren't readily in stock in December.  Go figure!  We did without last year.

Summertime rolled around and the last thing I was thinking about was Christmas Trees.  I was thinking about poolside, sun, sprinklers, and lemonade.

As summer faded it briefly crossed my mind to see if any hardware stores had any tomato cages left, but with school starting I never followed through.

Fast forward to the present and I was left without any tomato cages.  Again.  That's when you call your mama.  Mamas make it all better.  Thanks Mom for the tomato cages.  Your favorite son-in-law thinks these add the perfect touch to his increasingly strong desire to rival a Clark Griswold home.  Each year more gets added.  I fear for our future.  Unless I can entertain him with the idea of using materials my mom we already have in stock.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Photo Blasts From the Past

Completely random moment here, but I was looking for a picture of Little Man and I came across this photo.  I was preggo here with Little Miss.  Little Man was about 3 months shy of turning 2 years old.  He still makes that face today.  All the time.   This pic also reminds me of the days I had short hair.  For a LONG time my hair was never below my chin.  It was so easy to fix it.  I kind of want to chop all my hair off now. 

Chunkey Monkey and Little Miss are only 2 weeks apart.  He has always been...well...a chunk, and Little Miss has always been...well...little.  I guess their nicknames are fitting.  I love that they get to see each other almost everyday.  Such a special relationship.

This was me last year.  Part of me misses being preggo. I don't know if I'll ever come to terms with never being pregnant again.  Maybe just one more?  Is this how the Duggar Family became the Duggar Family?  They just kept saying, "Maybe just one more?"  Help me, Wanda!

This is one of my all time favorite pics of Steven.  It's so him.  All hot and muscle-y just strolling on the Florida beach with his #2 girl (I'm his #1).  He's such a phenomenal father.  Speaking of Florida, we get to go again in March!  I'm very excited.  And before you even ask, we're road trippin' it again.  That's how we roll.  Maybe we should invest in an RV?

Here's another favorite.  This is pre-kids.  See how there are no gray hairs or wrinkles?  Yep, pre-kids.  Good times right here.  Good times.  I can't tell you how many crazy posed photos we have like this.  Are we the only weirdos who do this?  Come on.  Say you do it too.  Even if you be lyin'.

That's all for the random photo dump.  I completely intended on sharing our Chicago pics, but I got sidetracked.  It happens to me a lot.  I'm not sure if you know, but I have issues.  Serious issues.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Menu

Intentions mean something, right?  Like I get some credit for intending to put the menu up earlier today?  Okay, you're right.  I'm a total slacker.  I've been so busy working on Pinterest projects that The Menu kept getting pushed back.  Then it was time for me to put myself to bed.  Then it was time for me to get up early.  Yeah, that didn't happen.  The Pillow Monster got me this morning and I was rushing around like a chicken with my head cut off just trying to get us out the door.  Thus, you get the menu on Tuesday...afternoon.

Monday (that was yesterday)- Chili Con Queso Pasta, Grilled Veggies
Tuesday-Chick-fil-a Style Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Corn
Wednesday-Restaurant Style Steak, Baked Potato, Salad
Thursday-Chicken Chili and Cornbread
Friday-Oven Baked Fajitas and Taco Dip
Saturday-Broccoli Chicken Rice Casserole and Crescents
Sunday-Dinner at Mom's

Monday, November 26, 2012

Travel Clue Answers

Menu Monday will be tomorrow.  Too much laundry.  Too much cleaning.  Too much stringing of the Christmas lights.  Too pooped.  Amazing how life goes on while you are away.

It's over. Family time and vacation time is over.  I have some serious tears going on over here.  If you hadn't already guessed it, or you missed the pictures on Facebook, we went to Chicago for the week.  It was an amazing time visiting family in the city and family in the suburbs.

If you're curious about the meaning of the clues, here are the answers...

Travel Clue #1:  Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln Park Zoo
Travel Clue #2: What you talkin' about Willis?  Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower)
Travel Clue #3: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. Soldier Field
Travel Clue #4: The New Millenium Millenium Park
Travel Clue #5: Old Navy. Navy Pier

Speaking of Navy Pier, we went.  Of course it was fun and we lucked out with the weather. Right by the lake is crazy cold, but we were living it up in the high 50's.  Amazing weather while we visited!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Chubby Cheekers {9 Months Edition}

Travel Clue #1: Abraham Lincoln
Travel Clue #2: What you talkin' about Willis?
Travel Clue #3: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Travel Clue #4: The New Millennium
Travel Clue #5: Old Navy

It's really hard to believe that I'm inching closer to that one year mark.  It seems like yesterday I was playing in the toilet.  Oh wait.  That was yesterday, but that's not the point.  The point is I'm getting older.  

Mommy keeps telling me to slow down.  I'm not sure if she's speaking figuratively or literally, but my gut is telling me it's both.  I am doing things way faster than Little Man or Little Miss did.  I'd like to think of myself as a baby genius.  I find all of my adventures as real feats, but Mommy doesn't always give me the accolades I seek out.  For example, I crawled from the living room to the bathroom in 3.8 seconds while Mommy was giving brother a bath.  Then I real sneaky like pulled up on the toilet. Since the lid was closed, I figured out how to lift the lid by inching my way around the potty.  When Mommy saw what I was trying to do, she gave me the mean face.  Geez!  No "Way to go, Buddy".  Nothing.  Just the mean face and she sat me down next to the tub and brother.  

I didn't really want to be there, so I crawled back over to the potty, but this time I spotted something white and fluffy and it was just dangling there by the potty.  I reached up to feel it except when I tried to grab it, that white fluffy stuff started coming down.  Cool.  I pulled and pulled until a little brown roll showed up. I thought it was a lot of fun, but Mommy just shook her head and said to leave the toilet paper alone.  I now know what that stuff is called.  Toilet paper.  How fun!  Can't wait to try that again.

Using my massive muscles, I have also mastered turning on and off the water in Mommy and Daddy's bathroom.  What other baby does that, huh?  I'm nine months old today, and technically, I could run my own bathwater.  Sheer awesomeness.  People, just get used to it.  I'm going to do big things everyday for the rest of my life.  I need a shirt that says, "Sheer Awesomeness Right Here".  In fact, I should have had that shirt in this picture.  

{This is me, busted by Mom, but oh so proud of myself}

Chubby Cheekers

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Because I Don't Have Enough To Do

Where are all my guessers for where we're going over Thanksgiving???  Have I stumped you, or is it just too obvious?  Remember, each clue has a keyword that gives you hints to our destination.  Anyhoo, here's the next clue...

Travel Clue #1: Abraham Lincoln
Travel Clue #2: What you talkin' about Willis?
Travel Clue #3: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Travel Clue #4:  The New Millennium 

About two years ago I got a wild hair in my butt.  That hair told me to make a rainbow birthday cake for Little Miss.  Actually, I stole the idea from my gal pal, Jamie.  She did one for her sweet little thing.  It was the cutest cake ever.  Seriously, her's was the cutest thing ever.  Mine was, well, just cute.

Anyway, how cute or not cute the rainbow cake was, is not the point.  The point is every year after that cake, I have made Little Miss' birthday cakes.  Her third birthday was a Pink-n-Purple Party.  Her cake was a six layer pink and purple striped cake.  Little Man watched me make the entire thing, which is quite time consuming, and then let out a question a mom never wants to hear.

Mommy, how come you don't make me a birthday cake?

Ouch.  I felt so horrible.  That night I promised Little Man I would make his 6th birthday cake.  That's where this all started.  I had to step out of my Rainbow Cake world.

Thankfully, Wilton came to the rescue.  Wilton's Football Cake Pan, that is.  It saved my life.  However, it wasn't going to be enough to serve all of our guests.  I thought about making a two layer rectangle cake to make it look like a football field and then stacking the football on top of that, but I wasn't sure about the weight of the football.

Then I was searching Pinterest.  Gosh, I love Pinterest.  I came across these mini rainbow cakes.  It involved baking a large rainbow cake and then using circular tube to press out mini cakes.  It got my wheels spinning. What if I made two layer orange and blue mini cakes?  Yep, that would work perfectly.  Here's what I did...

First I made a white box cake (gasp...yes, I made a box cake!).  Then I divided the cake mix into two bowls (I eyeballed it).  Little Miss and Chunky Monkey helped me stir in the Wilton's gel coloring.  

Aren't they cutie pies???

The next part is is simple.  Actually, it all is.  Just pour the blue cake mix into a 12 count muffin pan and the orange in a 12 count muffin pan and bake.  Allow them to cool, then chop off the muffin top. Now you are ready to dirty ice.  I learned this from Jamie.  Basically, you ice a thin layer all over and let it 'dry' so when you do the real icing, it seals the crumbs in.

After dirty icing all 24 cupcakes, spread a layer of icing on top of the color you want to be on the bottom.  I wanted the blue on bottom and orange on top.  So a thick layer of icing went on the blue.  Next, flip the orange cupcake on top like this...

If I had all the time in the world, I would have taken a bread knife and made each mini cake uniform cylinders, but let's get real.  I don't have a ton of spare time.  

The last part was the most time consuming.  Icing all 12 mini cakes.  Holy Moly.  I was in the kitchen forever!!!  My biggest problem was icing each cake while they were all so close together, and then adding the detail along the bottom with the decorating tip.  I just couldn't work with everything in such a tight space. This is precisely why I am not a cake decorator.  Nope, if I ever have to go back to work it will have to be teaching.

Anyway, this was the final product.  Not to bad, but not too good anyway.  

My biggest 'Ah-Ha' moment was I had twelve mini cakes, and guess what??? Chicago Bears has 12 letters.  Man oh man, did the heavens open up for me that one.  

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Football Training Camp Party

Travel Clue #1: Abraham Lincoln
Travel Clue #2: What you talkin' about Willis?
Travel Clue #3: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

Immediately after Little Man's 5th Birthday, The Outdoor Movie Party, he already had his sights set on his 6th birthday bash.  He wanted a Chicago Bears party.  Now I could have just purchased Chicago Bears cups, plates, and napkins and called it good, but what fun would that be?  Yeah, none.  So Steven and I came up with a Training Camp Party.  It was a lot of fun for kids and parents.  I will surely do it again when Chubby Cheekers gets older.  Here are the details if you have a little guy who loves football.

Schedule of Party:

  • Players (party guests) get checked-in.  This is where you hand them their player passes and apply their blackout tattoos.
  • Players are then guided to the field outside to make their team pennant.  This allows some filler time while you wait for all guests to arrive.
  • Once all guests have arrived the coach (my husband) blows his whistle to begin the training camp.
  • Drills are as follows:  Speed Ladder, Broad Jump, Pass Accuracy, and Shuttle Run.  Kids' times, jumps, and throws are recorded on their player passes.
  • Cake and Presents Break.
  • Then the after party game begins.  Our original plan was to have Jock Jams playing and each 'player' introduced so they could run onto the field in style, but I forgot to get out the iDock.  Would have been a super cool touch though :(
  • Kids play flag football.
  • Kids go home with a Gatorade and Snickers bar for their party favor.
  • The end.
What You'll Need:
  • Lanyards for Player Passes (Oriental Trading Co)
  • Cardstock for Player Passes (Hobby Lobby)
  • Foam Pennants (Oriental Trading Co)
  • Foam Stickers and Markers (I forgot to set out the markers too. Bad Mommy.) (Oriental Trading Co)
  • Spray Paint for the field. (Lowe's)
  • Speed Ladder 
  • Hula Hoops for Pass Accuracy
  • Cones and footballs for Shuttle Run
  • Gatorade and Snickers Bars 
  • Tables for Pennant Projects(Oriental Trading Co)
  • Blackout Tattoos (Oriental Trading Co)
Party Pics (I feel all sorority like):

{Player Check-In Station}

{Player Passes}

 {Broad Jump}

{Shuttle Run}

{Pass Accuracy}

{Speed Ladder}

{Cake Break on the field}

{The Game}

{Inside Decor...excuse the sign that was thrown up there 5 minutes before guests arrived.  It was either spend time on the sign or give Chubby Cheekers the Milk Twins.  Chubby Cheekers won out.)

{The Cake...I'll share how I did it tomorrow}

That's really all there was to it.  Super fun for little boys, and super fun to plan!
Feel free to steal.  Goodness knows I've stolen lots of ideas over the years. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Happy 6th Birthday, Little Man

Travel Clue #1:  Abraham Lincoln
Travel Clue #2:  What you talkin' about Willis?

My boy turned 6 last week.  Since we were all down with the stomach bug, we didn't get to celebrate in our usual fashion on his day.  Instead, we all healed up and focused on his party day (more on that tomorrow).  Today I want to celebrate him.

{Little Man, age: 6}

Gosh, he's handsome. He is a small replica of his father which is totally a good thing.  We need more men in this world like Steven and Little Man is rising to the challenge.  There are so many things that are special about him.  Things that make me proud to be his mother.

Little Man is a rough and tough boy, but he is a METRO MINI MAN!  He likes his clothes clean and crisp.  His father irons his school clothes every night with his work clothes.  They both like creases.  He wants to smell good and thanks to his Grammy Yoly, he does.  She buys him cologne or body spray every year for his birthday.  He cares about his appearance.  Every morning before school he washes his own face and makes sure I get his hair just right.  

On the inside he's even better.  One thing that is big in our house is how you treat others.  Little Man has his moments, but he treats his siblings with love.  If he receives an award or special treat, the thought of keeping it for himself never happens.  Almost instinctively, he passes half to his sister.  When it comes to Chubby Cheekers, he is a protector.  He makes sure he's taken care of and entertains him when he's sad...or mad.  He contains such compassion for others, it astounds me at times.  Definitely one of his God given gifts.  

Little Man, we love you very much.  You were created special.  You make us proud!

Mom and Dad

Monday, November 12, 2012

Menu Monday

This week we leave for our Thanksgiving trip.  I am so excited.  Although, I'm not going to share where we're going, I will give you clues.  All the clues will be something or someone familiar to you, and will reflect places of interest in our city destination.  So put on your thinking caps.

Here's your first clue...

Clue #1:  Abraham Lincoln

Do you know where we're headed???  Kidding.

Here's the short menu for this week.

Monday-BBQ Chicken Quarters, Baked Potatoes, Steamed Broccoli
Tuesday-Fried Chicken Salad and Honey Butter Croissants
Wednesday-Sloppy Joes and Potato Wedges
Thursday-Chicken Noodle Soup with Grille Cheese Sandwiches
Friday-Dinner with the McMullen's (thanks Erica!)
Saturday-WE'RE ON VACATION!!!!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Haters Be Hatin'

Generally, I don't like to share things about my life that would spark jealousy.  I've experienced jealousy and it's not a fun emotion.  I'm glad I learned to tune out of that stage of my life.  Sincerely I hope you have to because what I'm about to share could really strike up some jealousy issues.

I'm sure you noticed my blogging hiatus.  Er, maybe like a two day leave.  Well, I would like to share what I've been doing.  I've been...

  • Doing Laundry
  • Cleaning up puke from floors
  • More laundry
  • Cleaning up puke from beds
  • More laundry
  • Cleaning up puke from carpet
  • More laundry
  • Sanitizing
  • Laundry
  • Deep cleaning
Jealous?  Oh.  You're not.  I can't imagine why.  Actually, I can. Our past two days have been no fun at all.  I was hit with the stomach bug early Monday morning.  I had to miss Little Man's Rise and Shine singing performance.  I missed Little Miss and Chubby Cheekers' Well Check-Ups.  I was in bed.  I felt like a gigantic truck ran over my forehead, and my stomach was cramping.  By the end of the evening, I was able to pull myself from my sheets to see the kids.  

I got to Little Miss first. She immediately started complaining that her tummy was hurting.  Not 15 minutes later, as I was running her bath water, did I turn to see her barfing on the tile.  Great.  Then she threw up in the toilet.  She said she felt a bit better.  Good.  Got that little thing in bed, and she fell right asleep.  An hour later, she puked in her bed.  Wonderful. Steven and I get her sheets stripped, rinsed, changed, and her cleaned up when Little Man stumbles out of his room.  

His stomach hurts too.  Twenty minutes later, he comes in my room and pukes on my carpet.  Fabulous.  I get him and the carpet cleaned up and get him into the bed under his bed.  An hour later, he comes back to get me (with the bowl I gave him), to tell me he puked in the bed .  Perfect.  At this point, Steven is no longer getting up to help.  I put two and two together.  He's down for the count as well.  I get Little Man all cleaned up, sheets stripped, new ones on, and get him back in bed.  I am so exhausted from trying to recover from my own stomach bug that I don't even start the wash.  I just rinse the sheets, toss them in the laundry room, and close the door.

When dawn finally makes way into my room, I check on the kids.  Little Miss is feeling better, but Little Man looks terrible.  It was his birthday too.  He made one more grand finale of throwing up, then flopped from his bed, to our bed (with Steven), and back to the couch all day long.  He did open presents from us, but barely touched them to play.  It was so sad.  To top it off, Chubby Cheekers gets the diarrhea.  Diarrhea so bad that it burned up his booty.  My boys were breaking my heart.

For the remainder of the day, I worked on sanitizing the bathroom, Little Miss' room, the hardwoods, washing sheets, changing diapers, soaking a certain baby's booty, and getting as many fluids in the sicklies at possible.  It was a long, hard day.

I Lysol-ed the couch, put some sheets on it, and fell asleep immediately.  Steven took to our bed, and I wanted to give him space.  Space to sprawl and get better.  When Wednesday rolled around, I was beyond thankful to hear kids requesting breakfast and a husband who asked what he needed to do.  Ahhhh, people on the mend.  I likey!  Steven's first assignment was to take it easy, then I took to stripping our sheets, Little Man's sheets, and sanitizing any and every surface possible.  Our house is CLEAN!  In fact it reeks so much of Pine Sol and Lysol that is makes me gag a bit, but better than regurgitated green bean casserole (I don't think I'll be able to eat that for a very long time).

Alas, today, everyone is where they should be.  Little Man is at school.  Steven is back at work.  I am back into the usual Thursday routine, and could not be any happier.  Life is good.  We are healthy.

Now, this Saturday is Little Man's party and we are going to do it up RIGHT!  Poor guy had the stinkiest 6th birthday ever, so we're going big on his party day!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Menu Monday

That grocery budget got me this week.  Yikes.  I needed quite a few toiletry items this week and that zapped over half of my $100/week budget.  I did pick up some more fresh fruits and vegetables so I should be super skinny after this week ;)  I kid. I kid.

Thankfully, I have some freezer meals to pull from and some friends to mooch off of  so we won't starve to death.  Not to mention a certain little boy around here is turning 6 tomorrow.  SIX!  That means we're taking him out to eat. His choice.  Lord, please let him not choose Mc-Ba-Donalds (McDonalds).  Amen.

Anyway, I don't have a menu for you today.  However, I'm sure you have some friends you could mooch off.  Just don't let it be me.  You for real would starve then.

Have a great week!

And just because these pictures make me smile, here ya' go...

{Little Man, Little Miss, and Chunkey Monkey}

{Mr. Fluffy Pants and Chubby Cheekers}

Friday, November 2, 2012

We Don't Need A Dog

For the longest time I've had the cutest little people ask if we can get a dog.  Steven and I had a dog when we were first married up until we built our house.  Four months we lived with my FIL, so we found our dog a new family.  It was a hard decision, but the best one.

Now that the kids are older, they are asking for a small house dog.  I usually enjoy making my kids' dreams come true, but I'm not budging on this one right now.  No dog.  I'm such a meany pants.

However, when we tell the kids they can't do or have something we generally offer replacements.  That's were Chubby Cheekers comes in...

Photo: ROAR!

Chubby Cheekers is so much like a dog it's uncanny.  Here's the rundown...
  • He chews on shoes if we leave them out.
  • He picks up crumbs under the table if it's not swept up.
  • He plays in the toliet if the lid is up.
  • I have to clean up his messes (pee and poop).
  • He strings his chewed up toys all throughout the house.
  • He growls.
  • H drools.
See?  Just like a dog.  If only my oldest two could understand how logical this all is, then I would be saved.  

Thursday, November 1, 2012

He's Selfless

When you live with a person you tend to overlook the amazing things about them.  Your days get filled up so fast and stopping to recognize the attributes in your spouse falls to the wayside.  I admit.  I'm really bad about this, but I really believe in the 'Better Late Than Never' policy.  So here it goes.

One of the reasons I married Steven was because of his heart towards the establishment of family.  We both have strong beliefs on spending time together as a family.  Because of those beliefs, we have little time for our personal hobbies.  However, there are two things that Steven enjoys doing more than anything.  Thing #1:  Competing.  Thing #2:  Football.

One of the things Steven competes at is running races.  He doesn't just run for the enjoyment of the race, but to win.  He has yet to place first, but he is getting closer.  Just check this out...
Photo: That's my husband!

Yep, that would be my husband coming in 2nd in his age group.  He was 37th overall in the 5k race. 37th out of 2,619 runners.  That's a pretty big accomplishment for an old man with three bambinos.

Although I'm extremely proud of his accomplishment, what makes me even prouder is his selflessness.  When wanted to run the 15k, then he looked at the calendar.  It was Little Man's last flag football game at 10am.  He knew there was no way he could do the 15k that began at 9:00am and make it to the game in time.  So he signed up for the lesser race.  No questions asked.  No complaining.  Nothing.

Later that evening we attended our church's Fall Festival for the kids.  There were blow-ups, bonfires, marshmallow roasting, hay mazes, corn dogs, and lots of other things.  The festival began at 7pm.  You know what else began at 7pm?  The Notre Dame/OU game.  We aren't really OU fans.  We root for them, but have no connection to the school.  Notre Dame, however, is a different story.  That is Steven's go-to college team.  They rank right under the Chicago Bears (which Bears game days are sacred moments at our house).  

When I realized the Fall Festival was the same day as the ND/OU game, I cautiously asked Steven if it would be okay to stay after church for the kids to do some of the activities.  He didn't even bat an eye.

Of course.  Why wouldn't we.

Uh, obviously he didn't realize the scheduling conflict.

Babe, it's the same time as the game.

I watched to see if his face would get all wrinkly.  It didn't.

I know.  The kids will have fun at the festival and I can get updates on my phone.

And that is precisely why I tricked him into marrying me.  He is pretty selfless when it comes to things he wants for himself.  He knew how much going to the festival meant to the kids.  The memories were way more important than sitting in front of the TV.  

{Steven on the left. Rene on the right.}

So I guess I'm here to say that I appreciate you, babe.  You make me a proud wife.  You are selfless.  I love you.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Hopeful Pins

I haven't run into too many recipes on Pinterest that were total fails, and I'm hoping these aren't either.  If you make one of these recipes, I'd love to hear from you.


Baja-Style Chicken Bowl recipe

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Little Changes Add Up

So me and my booty crawled out of a perfectly warm bed at 5:10am.  I always question my sanity when I wake up with a '5' on the clock.  I'm more like and '7' kinda gal.  If you had asked me even 6 months ago if I'd be willing to get up at 5:10 on my own free will once a week, I would have laughed in your face.  Laughed hard.  Early is just not me.

It's funny how things change.  I still like my sleep, but I like my family a whole lot more.  I also like feeling good about my appearance.  Therefore, I find myself getting up earlier throughout the week to get my workout in without missing out on family time.  It was a big little change I was willing to make.

This getting up early stuff also makes me think about the way Steven and I used to eat.  We've been married for almost 10 years now.  I've been feeding that man for quite some time.  Looking at the way I used to cook compared to how I cook now is very different.  Different in a good way.  Used to Steven and I would hit the gym for a couple of hours and then come home and heat up chicken nuggets and fries, or pick up Taco Bueno or something fast on the way home.

Then I became pregnant with Little Man.  It took us almost a year to get pregnant so I wanted to make sure I did everything possible for this little baby.  I looked at my diet.  Goodness, it was bad.  I was skinny.  I had muscle definition, but I ate junk!  I started making little changes.  First thing to go was the frozen foods. Our dinner meals no longer consisted of things you could heat up.  I wouldn't say we were eating well then, but I did begin to focus on my servings of fruits and vegetables.  One fruit, one veggie per meal plus no freezer meals. It was a fairly easy change.

While making changes to my diet, I began taking a Power Yoga class.  I was about 7 months preggo and had done well with the little changes, but chips were still on my plate with every lunch (I love chips).  As we were striking the child's pose and getting ready to Namaste, the instructor who just had a baby herself began to share how she got her body back after baby.  She mentioned my beloved chips.  Her comment was something like this...

I had to cut out the chips.  Now if I need a crunch I grab a few slices of bell pepper.

And that my friends is when I looked at that lady like she had done lost her ever loving mind.  Chips, bell pepper.  Not the same thing.  Good for her, but I was still gonna munch on my BBQ and Sour Cream and Onion.

That was 6 years ago, and guess what?  I now munch on my bell peppers and have chips maybe once a week as an after meal treat.  I fill my plate with 2/3 veggies and fruit, 1/3 protein, 1/3 carb (whole grain).  If I still have a craving for chips after lunch, then I don't deny myself.  I'll have a few, but usually I'm not hungry after lunch so there's no need for the junk.  

I try really hard not to look at what I'm not eating, but what I am eating.  I focus on filling up on fruits and veggies first, then filling my plate with other items.  For me, it takes away the stress of 'eating right'.  And, when I want a good old fashion comfort meal (chock full of calories), I don't beat myself up about it because I know I didn't eat that way the whole day.  Just one meal out of a big, long week.

  1. Photo
    Lunch Today...crackers aren't whole grain though...oops

I'm not even sure if this helps you, but I want you to know that I wasn't always the crazy bell pepper lady.  I simply began making little changes to the way I prepared food and ended up here.  Holy cow!  I wonder where I'll be in 10 more years. Maybe I'll be one of those people who live solely off the land...NAH!!!!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Menu Monday

Another Monday just sneaking up on me.  Here's the weekly menu

Monday-Chunky Monkey's Birthday Dinner (Happy 4th, Chunky Monkey)
Tuesday-Baked Seasoned Chicken, Green Bean Casserole, Stuffing
Wednesday-Mummy Dogs, Banana Ghosts, and Pumpkin Veggie Tray
Thursday-Taco Soup and Cornbread
Friday-Chicken Tacos, Grilled Veggies, Brown Rice
Saturday-Poor Man's Beef Stroganoff, Salad, The Bread
Sunday-Dinner @ Mom's

Thursday, October 25, 2012

What Doesn't Kill You

I'm a closet Kelly Clarkson fan.  I like this song.  I like to hear it while I'm working out.  It gets me going.  Yes, I admitted it.  Yes, it's embarrassing.

Contrary to popular belief, I do not enjoy pain.  I don't particularly like running 3 miles multiple times a week.  I don't like working my legs or arms until feel like they are going to fall off.  

I like working out for one reason.  The after feeling.  I feel stronger.  I feel revived.  I feel less stressed. I feel better about my body (You know the one that popped out 3 kids). I feel like I made time for me.

Since I know how I feel when the alarm goes off early in the morning, I can identify with the reason why people shy away from doing what's necessary to keep our bodies healthy.  It's really easy to make excuses. It's really easy to talk yourself out of working out.  It's really easy to want results.  What's not easy is taking that first step.

That's where I'd like to encourage you.  I'd like for you to know that you won't regret that first step.  You may hate the pain you feel while working out, but you won't hate how your feel afterward.  In all reality, your pain is your gain.  Like Kelly says, "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger."  It's kinda true.

  I'd like for you to experience the high of doing work. I'd also like to workout with you.  I've talked about my friend, Erica, who began her own business, F.I.T Boot Camp.  She knows how to get you results.  She knows how to encourage.  She cares about your health.  

She offers her classes 3 mornings a week, and her next session begins Monday.  This is your chance to get the change you want.  She also began a Refer-A-Friend Program that I would like to share with you.  By sharing this, I receive absolutely nothing.  This is something that I want to share with you because I have benefited from Erica as a trainer and as a friend.  You won't just be her client.  You'll be her friend.  It's just how she is.  So here's her new program.  Now call her up!