Holidays · Recipes

Five on Friday – I Survived

It’s Friday morning. I’m at my desk. I was on time to work this morning. I didn’t spill hot coffee on my crotch while driving to work this morning (that was yesterday). It’s sunny. Today’s going to be a good day.

While I haven’t yet made it through the work day, I know I’ve survived my first week back to work after baby. In a perfect world, I wouldn’t have had to come back to work full time. In the real world, I had to. I’ve been out of college and working for 4 years. We have student loan debt and my husband has only been out of grad school for a year and a half… so financially I didn’t have a choice but to come back to work.

I feel blessed to have spent nine and half weeks at home with my boy. They have been the best weeks of my life. Somehow, it flew by and it feels like I blinked and I’m back at my desk that is covered in layers of bright colored post-its, stacks of binders and charts, and I’m staring at ‘coffee cup graveyard’ – the spot on my desk where I seem to accumulate coffee cups from the week.

The first 3 days were tough, and it’s still tough, but my tears have dried up (for now). I treat each morning like a mission: Go to work, do a good job, leave on time, drive safely above the speed limit on the way home, and attack my baby with kisses, snuggles, and funny faces.

Here’s a Five on Friday, with a little bit of everything…

1. easy, hearty, healthy

Crockpot sweet potato, chicken, and quinoa soup. SO good and super healthy!

Image from Chelsea’s Messy Apron – read her original recipe here

A Crock Pot is God’s gift to working women, especially in the cooler months. We have made this recipe twice, and I was sure to put it on our menu for this week since I knew I didn’t want to have to mess with dinner when I got home from work.

I’ve linked to the original recipe above, but I will give you a quick run down of how I make it:

  • 3-4 frozen chicken breasts
  • 1 big can of diced tomatoes, with juice
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 can of black beans, rinsed
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 packet of McCormick chili seasoning
  • 3-5 cups chicken broth (I make broth from Wyler’s cubes)

I put the chicken in the bottom of the Crock Pot and then put everything else in top and stir, making sure the chicken stays on the bottom. Because our Crock Pot isn’t huge, I add as much broth as I can until it is filled to the brim. If we feel like it should be more broth-y when we serve it, we ladle out a bowl and then add more broth to the pot.

This stuff is good. It may sound kind of weird, but it is seriously yummy and tastes even better as left overs. I know we will continue eating this throughout the cold months!

2. seriously good

I don’t think I need to say anything else here.

3. christmas is just around the corner

… and I am so excited! This will be the first Christmas in our house and Sammy’s first Christmas. Yay! I’m already mentally planning how my husband will be doing our Christmas lights on the house. I’ve already bought some presents for baby – I’m not an early shopper, this is early for me.

Of course, I’ve started thinking about what I might want for Christmas and one thing stands out. All this momma wants is a decent non-stick skillet. Seriously. I need one bad. I can’t make eggs, pancakes, or french toast without f-ing it up because my non-stick skillets suck so bad. (I cook everything else in stainless.)

Sure, I could just pick one up at Walmart when I’m there (which is all the time), but I’ve made it this long (2 years) or so cooking with this shit so I’ll just ride it out. If I don’t get a new skillet for Christmas, I’m going to the store and buying one the next day.

I know my husband is sick of my complaining about them and probably even more sick of eating badly cooked (aka burned) food so I’m sure he’ll pull through.

4. junk show!

My little assistant elf has been working so hard on chalkboard art for the 2 Friends & Junk Show next weekend! (Read about last year’s show here.) Because I was super pregnant and have a babe, I haven’t been working on furniture pieces. I decided to make holiday-themed chalkboard art using old/cheap photo frames.

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Sammy sits very still on my lap and watches. I have my fingers crossed that these sell so I can buy some surprise presents for hubby.

5. i’m mad for plaid

Who isn’t these days? I love plaid, but have a hard time wearing it. I feel like the perfectly horizontal and vertical lines make my broad shoulders even more wide. I’m a little bit large chested, which makes button up shirts difficult and since I’m a nursing momma — button up shirts are a joke.

When I saw this dress online, I loved it and thought I could make it work. It should be in my mailbox when I get home! Wouldn’t it be perfect for family photos for our Christmas card? Since we have a baby we are totally doing a photo card this year. I’m sure my husband will hate that idea.

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That’s all I have for today! I’m hoping to get Sammy’s 2 month update posted this weekend so stay tuned for photos of one super cute boy.

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