Wednesday, June 8, 2011

My Mom to the Rescue

I guess when it rains it pours....or should I say when he cries he screams.  That about sums up the past couple of days, my once quiet, patient little boy has turned into a monster around nap time.  I have a feeling there is something more going on that I just can't see yet....perhaps a tooth?!  I am crossing my fingers that something will emerge on his gumline, so at least I have validity that this is just a phase.  Believe me when I saw I tried the gas drops, I tried some tylenol, I tried to sing "Silent Night" (this has always been his favorite naptime song), and when I just couldn't take any more I would lay him in his bed, give him his monkey and close the door to muffle the screams.  I needed just a few moments to take a couple deep breaths, shed a few tears (ok, more like a lot), and muster up the strength to go back into the war zone.  This went on for about 3 hours before I finally called both my husband and my mom in tears, all I could seem to get out between my wimpering was, "he won't stop....screaming". I was beside myself, I guess these are the moments that everyone warns you about motherhood, I heard a lot of, "It is one of the hardest jobs, but one of the most rewarding."  And rewarding it definitely has been, but it seems this week we have hit a rough patch. Bless my mom, she picked up on my desperation right away and immediately dropped everything she was doing and advised me to pack up the little turkey and bring him over to Nana's house.  What happened next is pretty funny....keep in mind, he had been screaming for 3 hours straight. As soon as I pick him up, grab his diaper bag and head for the door.... he throws his chubby arms out to his side and makes his excited anticipated squeal, crying ceased at that moment. And for a moment I thought to myself, this will actually work out really well, he will conk out on the way over and will get a somewhat adequate nap in today.Not.A.Chance. All the way to nana's he managed to play with his toes, bat at his toys, watch the cars out the window, make faces at mama...none of which slightly resembled sleeping in the slightest.  And when we arrived at nana and papa's house he had a new renowned burst of energy and was loving life (and probably the fact that he managed to weasel his way out of his nap).  My mom offered to hang out with him so I could run some errands and have a little "me" time.  I cannot begin to tell you how rejuvenating that was, I didn't do anything grand.....just picked up some diapers, found some steals at the Gap Outlet, and scored some free items for my honey.  I needed a little bargain booster, and that did the trick.  So thanks to my wonderful mom, you really saved the day!

My Beautiful Mom!

 Sometimes I think everyone needs a little time to just "be" no matter where you are at in life.  My "me" time usually comes in the form of shopping (not necessarily buying, more like wandering and browsing), writing, and cooking.  Cooking is probably my favorite, it allows me time to just unwind and think.....although it has gotten a bit tough with the little munchkin, I still thoroughly enjoy it. There is something strangely satisfying to create a dish that brings a smile and a thumbs up from the hubs.  In fact, it makes me all the more excited to share and pass on recipes that have been successful....and lately, ones that come together quick do to some little man that is in constant need of my attention. After my day yesterday I was beat and decided to grab some of our favorite bbq instead.  So here is a recipe that I tried a couple days ago, it was healthy, quick, and made for a fun alternative to a typical weeknight meal. I know, the picture doesn't really look all that appetizing, but trust me.....

Asian Lettuce Wraps:
Original Recipe: Annies Eats


For the sauce: ( I doubled from the original recipe, measurements reflected below)
3 tsp. hoisin sauce
2 tsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. sesame oil
2 tsp. rice wine vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. Sriracha hot sauce

For the filling:
2 tsp. canola oil
1 tsp. minced garlic
½ tsp. grated fresh ginger
2 green onions, chopped
1 lb. ground turkey or chicken
2 cups mixed vegetables, (I used peas, carrots, corn...but next time would add finely chopped mushrooms, onions, and chopped water chestnuts for added crunch).
½ green apple, finely chopped ( this actually added a nice sweetness against the spice)

Sweet Chili Sauce, for dipping

Combine all the ingredients for the sauce in a small bowl and mix to blend.
To make the filling, heat a skillet on high heat with cooking oil.  Once the pan is hot, add the garlic, ginger and green onions to the pan, and stir fry for a few seconds, just until fragrant.  Add the ground turkey or chicken, breaking into small pieces, and cook until almost cooked through.  Add the vegetables to the pan and cook for 1-2 minutes.  Mix in the sauce and cook for about 1 minute until thickened slightly.  Add the apples to the pan and toss to coat.  Immediately remove the pan from the heat.

Serve with lettuce and drizzle or dip in a thai sweet chili sauce.

**All in all it was pretty good, a little lacking in the kick of flavor that I like so I added a topping of the chili sauce and it helped take the wraps to the next level.  But I think I still prefer this recipe for Chicken Lettuce Wraps, although a bit messier and more prep work they offer a higher impact of flavor.  But if you need something quick and easy definitely give this one a whirl.  Ok, I am off to make some popcorn and watch some TV before I hit the sack.  Night!

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