Monday, December 19, 2011

like most moms....

It's been way too long since I last posted anything. In fact, I realized I had a post in 'draft' state from March of 2011....I just posted it. Sad, that I can't get this done!

My time is limited, although everyone says that. My time is not entirely limited, but my time to think in peace is almost non-existent, unless you count sleep....well, actually even that time is extremely limited!

Since March of this year the following events occurred, in this order:

1) Jason was offered an amazing career opportunity in Naperville, IL.
2) We decided to take the offer
3) We flew to Naperville and bought a house (yes, just like that)
4) We sold our home in Michigan (yes, we still owned that condo)
5) Jason started his job, remotely
6) I quit my job :(
7) We moved
8) We had a baby

I could write about 10 blogs about each of these events, and I'm sad that I did not, but hindsight is 20/20, so I'll just move forward and talk about how amazing we are doing right now!

Naperville is very midwestern and I LOVE THE MIDWEST! I am happy to be so close to my family! I am also happy to have met 3 young couples just like us, with young children living right on my street - JACKPOT!

I've converted to a SAHM for the time-being. Something I swore I could never do - however, my skill set with my kids improves everyday. I hope to go back to work, but that has more to do with the job market than my desire or our need for it.

My children are amazing - Jonah drives me crazy but also makes me laugh hysterically with his sense of humor and I swell with pride at how smart he is, and gosh-darnit, he is handsome!! Elijah, the littlest Meslin, is a happy and beautiful baby who is growing rapidly!!

As a SAHM, I have decided to return to my blog as an outlet for my love of my family, cooking, feminism, and culture. I believe that if I write for no one but myself, inevitably, the truth will be portrayed and will somehow be entertaining to my family and friends who read it. So, enjoy the first of many blogs to come!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Proud Wife

For the second time in his career, my husband has been honored with the Chairman's Club award. His employer annually recognizes the top 20 (or so) sellers globally with a trip to Arizona for the winner and his/her significant other. I am so proud of Jason (regardless of a free trip) and to accomplish this task TWICE is even more impressive.

In order to make this trip happen we had to call in reinforcements - Linda and Greg (aka. Nana & Bapa). I had to do some arm-twisting, but they came to NJ and Jonah took good care of them while we jetted off to Arizona. Before we left, I got to spend some QT with mom and dad and prep them for the weekend ahead.... although there is really no prepping for a weekend with Jonah.

The weekend brought much needed relaxation to Jason and I, and alone time we rarely get. We met so many nice people from all around the world, ate wonderful food, basked in the sun, and enjoyed some activities. The highlight of my weekend? Sleep.

At home my mom and dad got to bond with Jonah and he loved every minute of it.

Jonah wakes up at approx. 5:45 am, but I instructed my mom to let him hang out for 15-20 minutes before getting him. Fortunately, we have a video monitor to oversee his actions during this period of time. Over two morning, Mom observed the following sequence of events: Jonah removed his pajamas, put them in the hamper (good boy). Put on his crocs (picture just the diaper & crocs). He then lined up his stuffed animals on the bed and put all of his books away. He laid on the floor and draped his blanket over himself making Tarzan noises and rolling around. Lastly, he attempted to remove his diaper, which was mom's cue to intervene. These behaviors were not see prior to my parents arrival, but God knows he wanted to put on a good show!

This weekend gave us all a chance to connect in different ways and I thank Jason for being the cause, and my parents for making the loooooong drive. We have an awesome family.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

cooking

As I sit reading Mastering the Art of French Cooking, I begin to reflect on what cooking means to me....

Cooking is so much more than preparing food for consumption. Cooking is an art form. Cooking requires foresight, preparation, organization, creativity, not to mention skill, thoughtfulness and love.

Cooking is a challenge while simultaneously cathartic. It brings me peace and frustrates me. It's time consuming yet goes by so fast. Cooking a great meal is inspirational, adventuresome, satisfying, and on occasion, disappointing.

What I love most about cooking is the bond it creates between women. I love the way it brings me closer to my mom, when I call her from Wegmans asking "what cut of beef do I need to make your pot roast???" or, my sister when I call her to ask "how do I make healthy brownies??".

Sharing recipes with friends, co-workers, and family members is like exposing a piece of personal information...you're telling them how you conduct yourself in the kitchen, what you love/hate to eat, how you manage your time, how you find your recipes, and ultimately why you butt got so big, or why it's shrinking!

If I had a nickel for every time I copied a recipe for someone, I'd surely be a millionaire. Anyone who knows me, knows I'll thrust recipes on you, whether you want them or not - I'm bossy that way. But I love sharing. I feel like I'm giving a little gift. And when friends come back and say "that was sooooo good", my heart wells up with joy, that I had something to do with another person's positive relationship with food.

To sum it up I want to recall a little story. My sister-in-law Julee made a wonderful (and easy) pork roast one visit home to Kansas. I asked for the recipe and she obliged, letting me know it came from her friend Stacey (origin unknown). I made the recipe at home and it turned out just as good (which isn't always the case). I made it dozens of times again in the past couple of years and once Jonah was eating solids I sent the leftovers to daycare with him. My babysitter Jackie asked what it was (she said it smelled wonderful when she warmed it up!) I gave her the recipe and she made it for her family (4 girls and her husband) and they also loved the taste and she loved the ease. Since then it has been passed along to her mother-in-law who made it at a dinner party and copied the recipe for her guests who loved it also. You get the gist....but my point is this: how cool is it that this little recipe traveled so far and made so many people happy? I think it's pretty amazing.

Do you want the recipe? Cause here it is! Enjoy!

SWEET PORK LOIN

2-3 lb. Boneless pork loin
1 large granny smith apples, peeled, cored & cut into bite size chunks
celery - 2 ribs or so, sliced
1/2 -1 cup golden raisins
Curley's BBQ sauce* or a KC masterpiece
1/2 cup brown sugar


Rub pork loin with salt, pepper and a good amount of brown sugar. Top with the chopped apples, celery and raisins. Pour bbq sauce over - use alot! Cover with foil and bake in 350 oven for 1 1/2 -2 hours.

Serve with mashed potatoes. Makes for great leftovers.

Yep, that's all folks.

* If you've never had Curly's you don't know what you're missing. Since this is a Kansas-sorta-thing, you'll have to order The Curly's Gift Pack for $22.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Hello, 2011!

I am ringing in the new year the same way I did in 2010:

With optimism! Jason and I set many goals for ourselves (we refrain from using the word RESOLUTION), and we met nearly all of them. I am proud of this accomplishment as well as motivated to try again. First, we need to reinstate last years goals, such as date night, family vacations, etc. and then there are some new goals such as healthier cooking, and more time for personal projects such as sewing, guitar playing, etc.

2010 was an amazing year full of blessings. I can only hope to have another year just like it...and truthfully, with these two handsome boys by my side, its hard to see how it could be otherwise.



P.S. Talk about optimism: I got a stomach virus while in KS, but rather than let it get me down, I realized I lost 3 lbs and thought - this is a great way to start the new year!