Is it normal as children to progressively have role reversal with our parents once we are adults? As much as I tell myself I am not parental, I AM! I definitely realized this once I had Emelie. I was at home with her and Dad all day and I ultimately began caring for my dad much as I do for Emie. It was great! When I would make Emie food, I made sure Dad ate and took his pills. If we were out running errands, I would make sure Dad and Emie got a treat- (Dad’s weakness was the mozzarella sticks from Sonic) and it was fabulous to take care of him too. He certainly enjoyed the attention and as time went by I would give Dad mani/pedis and trim his sideburns and eyebrows between haircuts with his hairdresser. My dad loved Cary Grant, so he always made sure he had the hair and the clean cut appearance. My dad was also a veteran- (Thank you for all of you who serve our country and fight for our freedom) and police officer so being clean-cut was essential. Aside from pampering Dad, I have definitely been more parental with my mom. I make sure she has her cell phone with her and that she checks in with me to let me know she is safe. Honestly, she is an adult, and can care for herself independently, why am I such a nervous nelly? I guess my mother instincts are just in overdrive! Anywho, since my dad passed away, my mom has found a wonderful receptionist position at a travel agency close to the house. She was working in the afternoon and a file drawer slipped and hit her in the nose! She called me and was concerned she may have broken her nose. Of course I reply with the typical questions, “Are you OK? Did you tell your supervisor?” etc…. she explains that she didn’t tell anyone and she felt silly, but her nose was bleeding and she didn’t realize it until it was pointed out by a co-worker. Once she came home, I told her we needed to go to urgent care and at least have her looked at to be sure her nose isn’t broken. I have definitely started channeling my inner “Dad” and ask her, “What would Dad do?” The woman was completely reluctant! She has a horrible headache, nausea, swollen nose and her eyes are dark…. Is there any other reason she needs to be seen by a medical professional? I literally fought this out for over three hours and at this point the urgent care was already closed. She finally agreed to go to the ER. We go and the nurse and physician were most concerned and were glad she came in to be evaluated. She was treated and released and I certainly felt better, but I’m not the patient. Here we are at home and I am trying to get her to ice her nose and take the anti-inflammatory medications and she wants to work on laundry. Silly lady… do any of you have these similar relationships with your parents? Tell me your stories!
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This recipe has become a family favorite and I definitely enjoy sharing it with others. One of the cardiologists’ wives I have become friends with made this casserole for us after I had given birth to Emie and it was AMAZING! Fortunately, she was happy to share the recipe with me and I am going to take the time to share this with you too.
8 cups zucchini, sliced thin (I typically coarsely chop this in my food processor)
1 cup onion, chopped
1/2 cup chicken broth
2-3 cups cooked chicken, shredded (I am a huge pressure cooker fan, so I will pressure cook the chicken about 10-12 minutes- then I shred the meat)
2 cups cooked rice
1 cup unflavored fat free Greek yogurt (you can substitute sour cream, but the yogurt is definitely the healthier option)
1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/4 parmesean cheese, divided
1/4 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3 cloves garlic
2 eggs, beaten
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Grease a 9×13 pan with cooking spray
Combine the first three ingredients in a dutch oven, bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes or until tender. Drain. Partially mash with potato masher.
Combine zucchini mixture, chicken, rice, yogurt, mozzarella cheese, garlic, 2 tablespoons parmesean cheese, breadcrumbs, salt, pepper and eggs in a large bowl. Stir gently.
Spoon into a 9×13 pan and sprinkle remaining parmesean cheese on top. (I will typically add a little extra mozzarella cheese on top if I have some on hand)
Bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly.
Broil 1-2 minutes or until lightly browned.
Hello my precious followers of my blog. I apologize for not posting as frequently or as regularly as I would typically like to. I can honestly say over the last serval weeks I have been so excited to build my inventory; it truly has consumed every free moment I have. The positive is, I have a substantial start to my inventory and I know you will be most pleased with my products and variety. There are many new and exciting things happening nearly each day. I try to post pictures to Instagram when I can and I have recently started a Facebook page, so I am hoping you can follow me on those two social media sites too! So many fun and exciting things….
On another fun note, Kellie came down for a long weekend and we could not have had more fun together. She was able to pop down sooner than anticipated to jump start our time together. I’m going to share some of the highlights of our time together if that is alright with you. This was the first time Kellie has come for a visit since Emie was born, when Emie actually could understand and anticipate her and Riley’s arrival to the house.
A little background for those of you who do not personally know Kellie or Riley. She adopted him early last fall and he is the sweetest Dalmatian dog with such a sweet and kind spirit. When she first got him; he was quite timid of everyone and everything. We were fortunate to meet him shortly after Kellie got him and immediately Emie and Riley had a bond unlike any other bond. She was close to two years old, learning and exploring everything as a toddler and he was a timid puppy in a new environment. They were able to explore new things together right from the start from stairs in the house to the backyard. The two of them have become best friends and I know Emie believes Riley is really her dog, he just lives with her Auntie Meme and Uncle Brett.
Back to the weekend, we had ordered takeout pizza that night and on our way to pick it up, we had to stop at the store to pick up a few items. When I say a few items, I am serious, but for Kellie, she loves Emie so much she always is thinking of her and getting her pretty clothes and the coolest toys on the market. On this outing, Kellie found Emie an electric moped with Elsa and Anna on it from the Frozen movie. As Emie’s mother, I am confident in saying Emie did not need this toy, but it was something Kellie wanted to do, and I am so glad she did. Once we got home and ate dinner the three of us were able to sit down and put the moped together. Kellie turned on her iPhone music and we were jamming to “old school” music from the 90’s. There is just something about some of the songs we used to listen to growing up from the Cranberries to Dave Matthews Band, we were able to dance and sing with Emie and had a wonderful evening. The moped needed to charge for a while before Emie could actually ride it so the hard part was the waiting. We waited a little over an hour and we figured it was enough charge for her to ride it around the living room a few times. Emie got on and rode around some, but got a little frightened after a few moments and was reluctant to get back on. We worked with her and tried to make it fun and laughed with her and before we knew it, she truly had the hang of it! We let the moped charge overnight and eagerly awaited the next day to ride the moped on the sidewalk outside!
The next day she rode up and down the sidewalk of the street like a champ! She was so happy, but it was amusing to watch how serious Emie was operating a foreign piece of equipment.
We had saved some fireworks to do with Kellie when she came home, so one evening we spent lighting off a little bit of everything. I have to be honest though, Kellie and I have fond childhood memories of lighting off smoke bombs and the black snakes. It is just one of those things we did as kids and now we have started it with Emie. She loves to yell out the color of the smoke bomb that has been lit and she says “Hello,” to the snakes as the ashy black snake emerges after being lit. Watching life through the eyes of a child, somehow makes me feel young again sometimes and blesses me to have these special opportunities to share.
Of course, there were small errands here and there, but the best quality time was spent in the evenings playing hide and go seek and tickling. We were able to go outside one afternoon and run and dance in the rain together. I cannot remember a time I have danced in the rain before, but I am so glad we did. If you have never danced in the rain, I would certainly add it to your bucket list. We twirled and sang, it was delightful! Watching Kellie with Emie is truly one of the most precious things I have ever seen and saying it warms my heart seems like an understatement. The two of them are so close and Emie adores her Meme.
Also upon Kellie and Riley’s arrival we got an Amazon box with a complete Frozen bedding set for the queen-sized bed in Emie’s room. The transition from the crib to the bed has been looming on the horizon. I really do not have a concrete reason why it has been a long and somewhat reluctant transition on my part. I suppose the obvious answer is, Emie is my baby girl and her leaving her crib is just another one of the many steps she has taken and has yet to take that are making her a big girl who is growing more independent. I remember similar feelings when it was time to move her from her bassinet in our bedroom to the crib. To me, these are huge milestones! Emie has not been sleeping well in her crib over the last several weeks and I have a feeling it was a lack of support in the mattress and the fact that Emie is so tall, she couldn’t move around and sleep as freely and as comfortably as she could be in a “big girl bed.” Anyway, Kellie and Brett thought ahead of me and somehow knew Emie would adore a Frozen bed set and it would definitely encourage a positive transition. Emie’s first night in her new bed was so exciting for her, but with all the long weekend festivities, she was asleep within the first 5 minutes! She was so sleepy, but so happy. It warms my heart to see her excitement and happiness and it is so important for her to have sweet, sweet sleeps.
With family time, comes the increased intake of calories. There is more baked goods and treats to buy out that you don’t always get. We went to a local restaurant that is truly a town staple, and probably had one of the funniest experiences. I opted after we ate to go and order some extra food to go for Kellie to eat on the road or to have for dinner when she got home. To my surprise the gentleman at the counter had evidently taken quite an interest in Kellie and I found myself laughing as I was chatting away with him as he took my order. When I went back to our table, my mom and Kellie thought he was flirting with me and to Kellie’s utter shock and amazement, she learned we were talking about her the whole time. The guy at the counter gave her extra food she had not ordered and was quite taken by her beauty, even though I expressed to him she is happily married.
On Kellie’s way home, we opted to drive up and visit Dad and had some extra quality time together before she left. Now we get to plan out next long weekend together and honestly, I cannot wait! Yes we eat too much and get sleep deprived, but it is all worth it for the family you cherish and love so much. Thank you for reading my stories and I hope you enjoy the pictures I have added to this post. Please bear with me as I get my posts back to a regular schedule and sharing more stories and recipes. Love your family members today, whether you see them, call or text them, let at least one family member know how much you love and appreciate them today. Make it a blessed day and I will be posting again soon!
When Emelie was about six months old it was the beginning of summer and I thought it would be a grand idea to buy a kiddie pool. I thought it would be so awesome to have one, merely because I never had one as a kid. I literally sent Craig around town to find the “perfect” one and he brought it home and we filled it up with the hose. Of course, the hose water is definitely chilly and you can guess, Emelie was less than fond of the “ice water” at the ripe age of six months old. Our lab, Coco Chanel, LOVES water and ultimately the pool found its demise with her toenails running and playing in the water.
Early last summer when Emelie was just over 18 months, I saw a hot tub sale at a local retailer. Now for a brief background, my family has had two hot tubs previously and we have not used them as much as they should have been, so we have been reluctant to repeat the past. I told Craig about the hot tub sale and he thought it might be nice to browse and look at the products. Keep in mind, our last hot tub was more than 15 years ago, so a lot has changed in technology and the “bells and whistles” for these things. Craig found one he liked and said he would use it. This tub is like a Cadillac for hot tubs- the pearl lining, lights, lots of seats, the works! Right up Craig’s alley, he is a man of luxury by nature and there are plenty more stories behind that, but I will try my best to stay somewhat on topic today, My mom, mentioned a great additional selling point for this hot tub: she said if we got one, it would be like a swimming pool for Emelie and she would not only learn how to swim, but the water would be nice and warm for practice- year round! So last summer we got the hot tub and Emelie LOVED it! She would swim and jump in the water without a care in the world. As we approached the autumn months, it was getting cool and of course the flu bugs off and on as well as the holidays so needless to say, the hot tub was getting minimal use. Craig would sit in it occasionally after work to relax, but that was about 30 minutes 2-3 times a month.
Once it started getting warm this year, I was anxiously looking for a nice afternoon to let Emie get in the hot tub to swim. I put her in for the first time about 3 weeks ago. This child was absolutely hysterical and upset. She was shaking and crying with fear. This girl bathes daily and adores water, so I am unsure where this fear is coming from. Additionally speaking and somewhat off topic, I repeatedly take Emelie to the park to swing and last year she adored the swings and would sit there for an hour going back and forth. The same with going down the slides. This year, she shakes and cries and has started making the most horrific face, which to an outsider, may be somewhat terrifying. Literally the left side of her face draws down and the child looks like she has had a stroke. She literally forces left sided paralysis. It would be one thing if she was suffering, but this drama is a bit over the top. I question at times if she is looking for an “Emie” nomination, I suppose I should look at her and say, “….and the Emie goes to…..” Unfortunately a hemorrhagic stroke was what my dad suffered from and why he passed away so suddenly, so watching Emelie make this face is quite unacceptable. My mom and I continue to tell her to stop making the “stroke face” because her Papa had a stroke and it is not funny and should not be taken lightly. Back to the hot tub, it is a continuous battle. She wants to get in ALL the time! Once she gets in, it is the same shaking and crying routine. She has few moments when she will smile in the water, and I am hoping it is only going to get better from here. I would understand these “fears” if she had suffered a traumatic event, but I am truly puzzled.
Any ideas of insight from you all? Thanks for reading today and I look forward to getting back with you sooner rather than later!