Thursday, January 31, 2013

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for electricity. When I woke up this morning, there wasn’t any. I didn’t go wake anyone up; I didn’t know how long it was out or how long it was going to be out. I wasn’t going to go into a 40 minute discussion about why we couldn’t open the fridge or why the TV didn’t work. So I let them all sleep, if we were going to skip school, so be it. Luckily it came on right before 8am and since only Maizie has to be at school early, she was able to make it.

I am thankful for a toilet that flushes without electricity. We lived in a house with a well and what a pain that was. The problem I had was, as soon as I knew it wouldn’t work, I had to go. Luckily today, I was able to go and flush without a problem, woo hoo!

Now the thing I am most thankful for this week…

Alabama Worley
I am thankful for Alabama Worley. This week she has been with us for four years. She may not be the brightest dog, let’s face it she is just a downright doofus most of the time, but she is ours and we love her. She was days away from being “put down” in western Tennessee when we staked our claim. We drove to Connecticut to pick her up at a rest stop and when we got home is when all Hell broke loose. Stella (just 9 months at the time) was sitting on the floor when Alabama RAN into the house. Stella screamed and then started to cry. Teddy (who was afraid of dogs and is still a tiny bit weary of Alabama to this day) 2 years old, jumped onto the couch and started to cry, LOUDLY. Maizie, who was 3, went up to Alabama grabbed her around the neck and squeezed her as hard as she could, she was making her claim. From that day on, Maizie has been Alabama’s favorite (2nd to me of course). 

Right at home, even looking for food the very first day

Alabama Worley has eaten countless crayons, Barbie shoes and tiny toys. She has gone through the garbage numerous times and she has ruined the couch with her neighborhood vigilance. 
Mrs Kravitz keeping an eye on the neighborhood...can't trust those squirrels

The thing she does that really gets on my nerves is that she steals food right off the counter or table and she doesn’t even wait for the room to clear anymore. She will do it while I’m watching her (like I said, not the brightest). She may get on my nerves when EVERY TIME I step backwards I step on her or when I walk in a room and she follows me or when she insists on getting on my lap, but the Kraus house wouldn’t be the same without her. We love you Alabama Worley!!
I can't even lay on the couch when the kids go to bed by myself

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Dinner Time

This is the third installment of Mom Before Mom from Carla at All of Me…Now.

Prompt #3: What was your favorite home cooked meal as a kid? Did you help make it? How did it make you feel? Share the scents and sights and flavors.

Let’s see, my favorite home cooked meal? There were two things that were my favorite. One was my nanny’s “beef stew” (I put it in quotes because my husband doesn’t consider it stew because it’s not brown) and her meat stuffing served on Thanksgiving. Both of these delicious dishes are served with homemade cranberry sauce on top.

Growing up, my mom, sister and I lived with my grandparents and my grandmother did all the cooking. You could watch her cook, but you really couldn’t help (sometimes you could put stuff in a pot, but that’s the extent of it). Both of these dishes only came around only once a year (the stew twice if we were lucky). The rest of the year there was a set schedule for meals. Monday was chicken, Tuesday was pork chops, Wednesday beef of some sort, Thursday was spaghetti night, Friday was fish, Saturday was hot dogs and Sunday was a toss up. Every week, same thing; my grandfather was not big on switching things up.

I remember getting so excited when my sister and I found out I was stew night. When we would eat it, we would put cranberry sauce right in it and mix it up so it turned pink. My husband is completely grossed out by this. Oh it tastes so good. I remember when I asked her for the recipe she didn’t have measurements, so I had to estimate everything.

The stuffing is only made on Thanksgiving and boy is it time consuming. I’ve never made it, but in high school I had to sit there and right down all the instructions while my mom made it with my grandmother (she was really old by then) so there would finally be a written copy. When my mom makes it now, she uses the one I wrote.

My husband looks forward to this stuffing (unlike the stew) every year. Just like the stew, it’s best with the cranberry on top.

I have thought about writing a post about the stew, but I’ve decided that I don’t want anyone outside the family to have the recipe. I haven’t made it in quite a while, but after writing this I feel it may be time. The only problem is even though making cranberry sauce is a very simple process; I still can’t seem to get it right.

Monday, January 28, 2013

No More Excuses! Get Active with Fitness Videos from Gaiam TV


As many of you know I have three kids (within 3 years). If you’ve had kids, you know what they do to your body, they destroy it. All I want to do is get fit again; it was one of my “plans” for 2013. Two of my kids are in school; unfortunately one is in half day kindergarten (afternoon session…even worse) which means I need to go to their school three times a day. This leaves little room for errands, never mind trying to go to the gym. Well I think my solution has come. I discovered Gaiam TV.

What is it you ask? Well think about Netflix, but for health and wellness. Through Gaiam TV you can stream over 2000 titles for personal development and, fitness videos for hundreds of hours of fitness, Pilates and cardio workouts. If you’re a yoga lover, then this is definitely for you; they have hundreds of hours of online yoga.

There were so many choices; I didn’t know where to start. I love Pilates, so that is the first workout I did. Once my kids realized that there was exercising going on, the joined right in (they love to exercise). Gaiam TV also has Children’s Yoga as well, they loved it. There are so many videos to choose from, you wouldn’t have to do the same workout for over a year if you didn’t want to.
My kids LOVE to "work out"

Well are they no name workouts? Absolutely not. You are able to stream videos from top instructors like Rodney Yee, Seane Corn, Mari Windsor, Kathryn Budig and even Jillian Michaels. (Don’t worry, she doesn’t yell at you.)

There are so many selection options. You can choose by instructor, exercise, level, style and best of all length. You only have half an hour to squeeze in during nap time, they’ve got it. You feel your core needs some work or you need to drop a few pounds after having kids (like me) they have a vast selection of workouts. If you find some favorites, you can add them to your playlist (like your own personal library).
Gaiam TV is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, it’s ready whenever and where ever you are through your computer, iPad or smart phone. Seriously, you could lock yourself in the bathroom to get a workout in if you were so inclined (I really wish my bathroom was big enough to do that).

 A Gaiam TV subscription is only $9.95 per month and you can stream unlimited content. No strings attached, cancel anytime. Gaiam TV is offering a free 10 day trail offer to all of my readers. It’s much easier to get to your living room than it is the gym.

This was a sponsored post by Gaiam TV and I received a free trail membership, the opinions posted are my own.