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Healthy Baked Apple {Recipe}

Apples are delish...


My family loves apples.  My kids always ask for apples for snack time.  They are so healthy and offer so many nutrients for my kids.  I love to make baked apples with meals when it's cold outside.  I don't need very many ingredients and I can throw them in the oven and forget about them.



Ingredients:
8 organic apples, cut into slices
2 TBS butter
2 TBS sucanat (sugar)
Cinnamon to taste

Procedure:
Slice the apples and throw in a dish sprayed with non-stick spray.  Sprinkle with sucanat and cinnamon.  Chop the butter and spread on top of the apples.  Cover with foil.  Bake at 350 for 40 minutes.  

Easy as Pie!

xxLiz

Weekend Links

Weekends are always so busy for us.  It seems like we do a lot of running around and then when the evening hits, I just want to sit down and do some reading.  The problem is it seems like "Blog-world" sleeps on the weekends.  I thought I would share a few reads that I have enjoyed this week so you would have a little weekend reading, if you wish.
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I have been loving all the practical ideas shared in this bloggy series on Hospitality.  
visit Feathers in Our Nest
It touches on all aspects: money, small spaces, desire to serve in this way, kids, comparison... 

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I could totally devour the pictures in this post (and, every other post on this blog).  


Peruse her site and get inspired to add some color to your home. 

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This little makeover is a perfect example of how a few, simple changes can transform a space- 
even an itty-bitty space.  


They have so many great makeovers.  Not to mention, they are so funny and I never get bored reading their posts.  Grab a cup and settle in...

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Here is a wedding post for all you soon-to-be brides.  I love the dress and candidness of the pics. 


Something most of you might not know about me... I am a "closet" tattoo lover.  I love tattoos.  I have wanted one for.a.long.time.  I just keep talking myself out of it (which I know my mom and dad are grateful for).

Have a great weekend!!!

xxLiz


InstaFriday {Instagram}

I love Instagram.  It just might be my favorite form of social media.  As a matter of fact, I think I can firmly say that it IS my favorite social media outlet bar none. 

The last few weeks have been fairly quiet on my IG feed.  I have been busy and had a sick little lady on my hands.  


She had a double ear infection (which I have read you can cure with breastmilk... I will be trying that next time) so we went and got some antibiotics for her.  Obviously, you can see she is allergic to them.  This picture doesn't even do it justice.  Her ears and cheeks were covered and swelled (think high school wrestler cauliflower ear- that's what her ears looked like at one point).  You could feel the heat from the rash all over.  Poor thing... no more antibiotic for you!


Mark and I did get an evening away to celebrate my 30th birthday at The Melting Pot.  I had a friend in college who loved this place.  I used to hear her raving about it, so one day I asked Mark if we could go try it for ourselves.  Needless to say, it is my favorite restaurant and now I am the one who raves about it.


We visited Chick-fil-A last week so the kids could play and enjoy some time outside of the house.  Baby girl and I sat outside and ate puffs while the big kids played.  She is such a sweet baby...


I had my first {Shop my Closet} sale right here on the blog.  If you are interested in some great items at great prices... check it out.  There are still a few items available!!!

Have a great weekend!!!

xxLiz

Life...

She pairs socks and scrubs the floors.
She wipes tears and hugs the hurt away.

She loves with wreck-less abandonment and wishes the memories to last a few moments longer.
She breathes blessings on her home and lies with sweet babes to sleep.
She muddles through the arguments that inevitably creep into every day, threatening to steal the joy
gifted to her.



  


She keeps the momentum moving forward and holds her breath as the days pass- too quickly.
She looks in wonder as the purest form of blessing grows and matures.
She feels unworthy of the call... the call to be a mother.
But, she looks to the Creator of all things for grace- surely there is enough for her.
She would be nothing without His amazing grace- how sweet the sound.



She prays to slow life down... one memory at a time.
She soaks up each sweet word... each touch... each slobbery kiss.
For, this is her life- the very reason she was breathed into existence.

 xxLiz


30th Birthday

How in the world can it be true?  How can I be 30 years old?!?!?!
Mark and I went with some friends to my favorite restaurant... The Melting Pot.  
The chocolate fondue that they serve is crazy good.  


Not only is it my birthday, but it is also a great day over at She {hearts} It!  We are giving away an awesome blanket from Juniper Wilde- ORGANIC, custom print, soft, adorable... what's not to love?

ORGANIC Baby Blanket Charcoal and Grey Clouds Jersey Swaddle Large

Run on over and win yourself a baby blanket!

xxLiz

Shop My Closet

If you like black and white... this is your lucky day!  I have several black and white items that I am selling in today's {Shop my Closet} sale.  This is a great way to get some awesome "staple" items for your closet... without spending a fortune.  There are also a few pieces that will add some color to your spring wardrobe.  Just an FYI... all the items are gently worn and washed according to labels.  There will be a $5 shipping charge on the first item, and $1 on all additional items.  

To purchase, email me at 

thequickjourney{at}yahoo{dot}com

Be sure to include your paypal address along with the item description you want to purchase.  You have 24 hours to respond and complete your payment, or I will re-list the item.  

Black & White Floral Dress  $10
Size M

Black Cardigan from Bebe  $10
Size M

Black Silk Tank  $5
Size 8

SOLD
Black Mod Dress  $7
Size M

Black & White Ikat top by Guess  $7
Size M

SOLD
Gold Dress by Express  $20
Size M

Wrap Sweater  $5
Size X-Large


Turquoise Strapless Top by Bebe  $5
Size Large

SOLD
Green & Teal dress $10
Size 6

SOLD
Orange Paisley Top  $7
Size M

Pink & Black PolkaDot Dressbarn Top  $5
Size M

Pink Abercrombie & Fitch Shawl $7
One Size Fits All

Cheetah Print Bebe Top  $5
Size L

Happy Shopping!!!

xxLiz

Would You Like a Cup of Tea?

It is really important for me to teach my kids to love one another.  
I want them to enjoy one another's company.  

Time is too precious to spend it bickering (oh, how they can bicker).
It is too short to waste it fighting over toys (yep, they do that, too).


Everyone would be much better off if they just had a tea party... with a bunch of wild animals and baby bottles.


I love watching them play.
I love watching their imaginations.
I love getting to see little moments of kindness between the two of them.
It's almost like God's giving me a pat on the back.  And, I really need those pats from time to time.

xxLiz

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Head over to She {hearts} It and check out my post on tasty, healthy Oatmeal Bites!
Also, there is a giveaway going on for a free, custom Printable!!!

Goodbye, TV...


Life is expensive these days.  We are often surprised at how fast the money we are blessed with... disappears.  This past month we looked at our bills and tried to find where we could cut some costs.  We finally decided we could live without TV for awhile.  I know many people live without TV, but I was having a hard time grasping that I would no longer be able to decompress in the evenings while watching meaningless television.


Honestly, we only watched TV in the evenings for an hour, or so after the kids went to bed.  We did purchase an AppleTV and stream Hulu through that.  We have been watching sermons and a few TV series when we have time.  Honestly, we haven't missed it too much.  I do miss watching the news a little... but, all the news really did was depress me and make me fearful about what is to come.

Guinnyth's moccs: c/o Two Little Martians

Baby steps, right?  We are taking baby steps to cut costs.  It gives us more time to talk and connect to one another.  We should have done this a long time ago.  

xxLiz

Do you have TV???  I would love to know if you miss it, or not. 

Nursing School

I have nursed all three of my kids.  It was a journey that I had always intended on traveling, but I had no idea that it wasn't as easy as I had thought.  This is for all those mommas and some-day-mommas that want to hear another perspective on nursing one's babes.

I assumed that nursing was going to be quick and simple.  This is how I had always thought it would go: baby is hungry... baby latches on easily and perfectly... baby eats and gets full after 5 minutes... baby sleeps for three hours.  That certainly isn't how it went for me with my first experience. 
Let me preface this by saying, my last two babies were much easier for me to feed (I knew a little more about what I was doing), but Isabella was certainly a little more challenging.  

I think my nerves, the pain from nursing, and the fact that my milk might not have been as plentiful as with the last two, made those first few weeks were very tough.  I went into motherhood adamant about nursing... it was the only way for me to feed my child, in my mind.  She had terrible reflux and tummy issues.  I was a ball of nerves and barely ate anything all day.  She cried... and cried... and cried.  Which in turn meant that I was crying pretty much all day as well.  I almost gave up nursing all together.


I was told to try a special formula to see if it would calm her tummy (this was around 2 1/2 weeks).  During that time I pumped and stored milk while I gave her formula, just in case the formula didn't work and I could resume giving her momma's milk.  Long story short, the formula did not work and I continued to pump and give her bottles.  For me, doing a bottle took out some of the guess work. 
 The "Is she crying because she didn't get enough milk?" mind game that I think all mothers play with themselves when they are beginning the nursing journey.

At about 5 weeks (she had been on a bottle full-time for about 2 1/2 weeks) I was at a family function and didn't want to pack bottles/milk and deal with all the commotion, so I decided I would try and nurse her while I was there.  I had prepared myself to be patient and relaxed.  It went great!  I was so much more in tune with her.  My hormones weren't a complete wreck.  My milk was flowing great and she was much more experienced as far as sucking went.  


I never looked back.  All my kids have been nursed full-time from birth.  I needed that short amount of time with Isabella to get myself "detoxed" from baby hormones.  With Liam and Guinnyth, my milk came in very early and I had an abundance of it for my babies.  Nursing was painful with all three at first, but then it goes away and is pure bliss.

For me, I always go through those moments of worry about whether, or not, my milk is sufficient for my babies.  I have moments when they are fussy and I second guess my body's ability to provide enough for them.  I just drink lots of water, rest my body, and try to have confidence in the whole process.  

Here I am with my third, not sure if it is our last, and I relish in that closeness that I get to experience through nursing.  I know it doesn't work for everyone.  I know not everyone feels like it's the right journey for them, but for me... it is a very fulfilling and blessed journey.  

Let me know if you have anymore questions you would like for me to answer!!

xxLiz

Did you nurse your babies?  I would love to hear your stories, too!

Printables {Giveaway}

I am giving away a free printable over at She {hearts} It today!  Be sure to head on over and check it out!

gallerywall

I chose the one with the hot air balloon... Oh, the places you'll go!

xxLiz

Oldest vs. Youngest

There is something that happens to a mom between the oldest and youngest baby.


With Isabella, my oldest, I was so excited for each milestone.  
Sleeping through the night... I didn't enjoy my all-nighters very well.  I actually despised them for the first few weeks.  Hormones totally wreaked havoc on me.
Eating... we started right at four months.  I gave her a sippee about that time as well.  I was so anxious for the next goal to be met- wishing my time away.
Walking... I was so excited to see her toddling around like a big girl.  I loved her being able to move about.
Nursing... Once she was a year I felt like I had earned my gold star and was ready to call it quits.


With Liam I slowed things down a bit.  I didn't start food until five months and didn't think too much about him rushing into the next phase of baby-hood.  I nursed him until he was fifteen months (got the flu and I dried up) and loved every minute of it.  It was the most wonderful bonding time and we were very attached to one another.  


In walks baby #3... baby Guinnyth.
I am taking my sweet time with this one.  
Sleeping through the night... she is such a great baby, but she definitely likes to wake up and get snacks in the night.  I just recently (7 months) got strict with her and am letting her fuss a little bit.  But, last night, she woke up before I went to bed and I went ahead and nursed her even though I knew she didn't really need it.  I relished every late-night moment I had with her as a newborn.  I actually had a difficult time making myself put her back into bed when I nursed her to sleep in the middle of the night.
Eating... I just started her on food around 7 months.  I tried during her 6th month, but she didn't really care for it.  Now, she is chowing down on her homemade purees.  I have enjoyed making my baby food for each of my three kids.  It is so easy and cost effective.
Nursing... she still nurses at least 5-6 times/day and sometimes more if I respond to her pleas in the middle of the night.  I fully intend on nursing as long as she wants to.  I had planned on doing that with Liam, but sickness changed those plans.  G won't take a bottle, so we are pretty much inseparable.

I think as you get older and have more kids, you learn to be content with a slower pace.  I love that Guinnyth  seems so young right now.  She still seems like a young baby to me.  Ella at 7 months seemed so old and advanced- because I pushed her to be that way.  


xxLiz

Do you feel like this with your kids?
     

BabyFood 101

I know there are plenty of posts out there about making your own baby food, but I thought maybe there might be one, or two, of you who would like to know more.  When pregnant with Isabella, I never once thought that I would make my own baby food.  Why would I?  There was plenty of food on the shelf at the store for me to choose from.  

I got into organics before it was all the "rage." With that being said, there was VERY little organic baby food to choose from at that time.  And, the options I did have were "out of this world" expensive.  So, when I decided to make my own I tried to buy organic produce when it was on sale.  When that wasn't an option, I used organic frozen, which was cheaper.  When we had Liam, I used all fresh since we had a garden at that time and I had organic veggies right out my back door.  We also had a family that was gracious enough to offer some produce for us to use for this purpose.

This is how I do it:  
*I steam my produce one fruit/veggie at a time (butternut squash and sweet potatoes are the only thing I bake).  This allows me to multi-task by baking and steaming all at the same time.
*With fruit, I steam them with the skins on (apples, pears, peaches, etc.).
  Veggies, I do peel (zucchini, yellow squash and such) before steaming.  
*Once they are soft, I remove from heat and let them cool.  
*I then scoop out the fruit and put it in my food processor (this is the first time I have had a food processor.  i have always used my blender or little, electric food chopper.) and process until creamy. 
* If you need to add some liquid- use the liquid in the pot that you used to steam your produce.  It will have some nutrients from the produce in there.  


Then, I put scoops of the food into ice trays, cover with press-and-seal, and freeze.  When they are frozen, I put them in ziploc freezer bags, label, and throw them in the freezer.  


I pull them out as I need them.  I can make a fruit/veggie cocktail, or just stick with one type of food.  
This might seem like it takes a long time, but it does not.  I can make enough baby food in a few hours to last me a month, or more.  It all depends on how much your baby eats.  

I hope this helps!  I would love to hear if you make your own food, too!

xxLiz

  

I love...

I love.

I love the changing seasons where we live.  I love that after the heat of the summer, we are ready to be cooped up for a little while (sometimes, the cooped up season lasts a little too long) snuggling in our cozy clothes and sipping hot cocoa.  I love that once winter is making it's escape, we are ready to break free and explore outside.  


  I love that the outside is like a brand new toy for my littles.  I love that they can explore a dirt patch for an hour... pretending that they are going to find a rare fossil.  
 I love that, although, my newest little might not love being in the crunchy grass... she loves being on her momma's hip breathing in the fresh air.  

I love that seasons come and seasons go.  I love that we all get to start fresh at times.  I need a fresh start- often.  

xxLiz