Friday, October 25, 2013

How to Play for Less, revisited!

Hey, party people!  Sorry for my long absence....we had a sick kiddo, and like good parents, we've taught him to share, so the whole clan's been out of commission this week.  Yikes.  I rarely get sick, but I think the combo of little sleep, baby caring, and a crazy work week that included a 15 hour day in Albany....well, there ya go.  We're not 100% yet, but we're all on the mend.  And I'm thinking of taking stock in Kleenex.  So it goes.
Other than chicken soup and sniffles, we've had a pretty epic couponing week.  I've recently had a decent amount of requests for this so called "frugal living" I try to espouse.  Ever since having a kiddo, I'm working doubly hard at it with less time- on maternity leave, I stockpiled health and beaty aids and canned good like sno one's business.  Oh yeah, and diapers.  Righ now, diapers happen to be my obsession - I have a stockpile diapers.  I know, I know.  We played around a bit in the beginning, and found that our little 'bear can use mostly anything, so we have a fine mix of huggies, luvs, pampers, and store brand.  I mostly shop at CVS with double coupons and reward dollars, though sometimes at target with double coups and cartwheel.  My hard rule?  Never pay more than a dime a diaper.
Well.  Wegmans threw me a bone last week - they had a coupon for $5 off any pack of wegmans diapers (you can use on any size).  The small packs?  6.79 for 31-23 diapers (size 3-5).  We bought one size 2 to road test, and it passed the 6.79 - $5 a pop, you can get diapers for $1.86, with tax!  That's six or seven cents a diaper!  The only catch - one per customer.  No big thing. Greg, my mom, my uncle and I have been hitting up wegs multiple times a day to get dipes- our grand total so far is 40 bags, or, roughly 1000 diapers....for $70, all together.  Basically, kiddo has enough 'deeps to hold him for the next year.....all for about $200.  And 2000 wipes.  For roughly $25 for the wipes.  Boo.  Ya.
I'm not an expert.  I follow a few websites (Living Rich with Coupons, Krazy Coupon Lady) and a few kiddo facebook sites (Mommy Swap, Garage Sale Days, Rochester Pass it on), and think outside the box.  For kiddo.  For house expenses.  For food shopping.  For clothes, accessories, vacations, races, anything.
I've done a few recaps on "how to play for less"....
The Coupon Game and How to Play
How To Play for Less : Ironman
How to Play for Less: Owning a Home
How to Play for Less:  The Weekend
How to Play for Less:  Valentine's Day
Dipes n Wipes...How to Save with Baby!

But  certainly could do some more!  What are you guys interested in?  More grocery shopping tips?  Clothes?  Holidays?  Craigslist?  Baby Stuff?  Vacation?  Healthy Living on a Budget?

Let me know!  I'm not updating the blog as regularly as I would like, but I still love hearing from you and putting my thoughts on "paper".  And now, because I can't do a freakin post without my is the obligatory Rob pics of the day....

It's punkin time!  What are you up to this weekend?  We're doing the Halloween thing - costumes ready, a little get together, and some punkin carving!  Have a great weekend!!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Curry in a Hurry

Ugh, I know.  Massive eye roll at the title.  I'm with you.  It's lame.  But hey, I'm sleep deprived so cut a woman some slack, k?  Thanks :-)
Seeing as we are now back in full swing  it's time for a go go go.  And we're working on it.  Two parents working 40 hours a week with an infant isn't anything new, but I swear it really IS rocket science....fueled on little sleep.  My solution?  Batch cooking, streamlining, and cramming everything I can into the random free hour that comes my way.  So...I make meals for Sunday, Monday and Tuesday on Sunday, and for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday on Wednesdays.  I try to mix up the veggies, protein and carbs, and we feast on leftovers for lunch.  Makes it a ton easier on those weekday nights to get in some kiddo snuggles, a workout, and dare I say it?  A quick bubble bath!  On the menu this past week - chicken sandwiches, beans and rice, tofu and tater fries, stiry fry with edamame, and curry!  The curry was a new recipe of this n that- it was easy, fast, and quite delicious!  So, OF COURSE, I want to share with you.....

Easy Chickpea Curry (serves 4)

2 cups cooked chickpeas (I used dried, but you could sub in canned)
1 cup onions, diced
1 14 oz can stewed tomatoes
1/4 cup raisins
1 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. garam masala
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tbsp. curry powder
1 tbsp. brown sugar

Saute the garlic and onion with the olive oil in a sauce pan for about 5 minutes, or until soft.  Add the cooked chickpeas, tomatoes and raisins.  Add in a splash of water (I used 1/4 cup), simmer.  Add in spices, cover and cook on low for 15 minutes.  Serve over a bed of rice (I used 1 cup uncooked for 4 servings).

30 minutes prep from start to finish (well, aside from the chickpeas, which soaked overnight, but that's super easy!).  And it was...deeeeeeeeeellllllllllliiiiiiiiiiiissshhh.  Authentic curry?  Probably not.  But it sure tasted good :-)

Whats your go to meal for weeknights?  We usually rely on veggie burgers, pasta and veggies, crockpot soups,  or chicken breasts and rice, but I'm trying to expand my repertoire!  On the menu this week coming up....enchiladas and chicken n dumplings!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Scarecrow 5k Race Report - The one that we won.....together! (Well, Kinda)

(Edited - This post was started on Monday, posted on Tuesday...welcome to mommyhood, Rae! :-P)

Well, hello!  C’mon, out with it-who’s working today?  Sadly, even though it’s a holiday, no bueno for the day off at my job (Well, my boss swore we had the day off…multiple times.  Why in god’s name did I correct him??)  Any-whose, it was a pretty quiet day at work (before the storm – this week we are leading up to a conference prep, so the rest of the week will be he- double hockey sticks).  I was glad to have a day to organize life a bit- kiddo thought it would be fun to be up at 2m for playtime….oh, my child.  Let’s just say that it’s inspired quite a few cups of coffee, diet coke, and…ok…half a jar of peanut butter to stay awake.  And I’m not even ashamed.  So there.
Enough about work and sleep deprivation, though…I have a race report to share with you.  A super special one.  See, ever since I got the green light to run with kiddo in the jogging stroller, I’ve kept my eye out for 5ks.  But I knew I couldn’t sign up early because running with a baby is just way too dependent on weather, his mood, how many people were in the race, location, etc.  So I just kept them shaded in grey on the calendar.  Well, this weekend was it.  The weather was gorgeous, the sun shining.  We had an awesome sleep night.  And Rob was giggling away at 7am on Saturday.  It was go-time….Scarecrow 5k in Fairport, here we were!
I’ve always wanted to run this race – it benefits a local domestic violence shelter, it’s located in a great spot (by the Erie canal in a great little town), and it’s a pretty flat course.  It also has a stroller division –woot woot!  Instead of 3 deep, only the fastest stroller wins a prize, but hey, I thought it would be fun!  So Greg and I dressed up the kiddo in one of his Halloween get ups (a cat, cause we were gonna be speedy like a panther, lol) and we took off for the race!
Pre Race, I registered, got my bib, made a bib for Rob, and hit the potties.  I socialized with a few MIMs and fellow runners, hung out with Greg, and then got to the start about 10 minutes early to line up.  I lined up way in the back – there’s nothing worse than a mommy runner who lines up in the front with her clunky stroller, especially since I had no clue what type of speed I was looking at.  My typical 5k pace is a bout a 7:30-8 minute mile, but um….I haven’t run an open 5k in ummm…..4 years? And I haven’t run more than 2 miles with the stroller, ever. 
The gun went off and we were off!  It took about 30 seconds to cross the start (600 runners) and I knew without a doubt in the first two minutes that I should have lined up further up.  I also understand now why people that don’t wear headphones get annoyed with people that do – they are clueless.  I wound and wove through the first mile, clipped one woman’s heels (she would NOT MOVE) and got through mile 1 in 10:30- I think I passed at least 200 people.  Ro Bear was lovin it, smiling as I ran, and the little stinker even passed out about ¾ of a mile in.  To the turn around at 14:50 (Speeding up, though I had to do a crazy maneuver to flip the stroller around!) and we were on the canal for the last half.  I was loving it.  Running with the sun out, about 50 degrees – perfect running weather, especially for my double bundled kiddo!  On the canal stretch back, I felt like we were flying – even pushing a 35 pound stroller plus 12 pound kid was no big deal.  I saw a stroller pass for an 18 minute finish – wows.  The last mile, we pushed it in, the Bear woke up and started complaining, so I put pedal to metal and crossed the line in 28 minutes – good for 3rd stroller, and first mommy pushed stroller!  (1st and 2nd were dudes, so even though we didn’t win, I felt pretty good!)  Our overall pace was 9:17, and we came in 19th out of 50 women ages 30-34.  Not too bad for a stroller totin’ team J

Rob handled the race like a champ – he giggled, encouraged me, and promptly fell asleep when it was over.  Pre race encouragement, on course entertainment and post race rest and relaxation- this kid has it down.  I can’t wait for our next race!!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Mommy's Month 3

Whew, where did the week go? I have half written post I've been working on since Wednesday, then someone reminded me i haven't done my month 3 post baby!  i wont do these forever....robs clearly the star now.  Maybe a 6 month post and then that's it?  We'll see.  But I think alot has happened since month 2, so one more consecutive month was worth a mention.  so whats mom (that's me!) up to in month 3?  Here we go!!

Physically - Don't hate on me, please.  I'm officially 2 pounds lighter than I was when we conceived, and 4 pounds away from racing weight.  With that said, most of my clothes don't fit.  My tops are tight (thank you breastfeeding!), and my pants are loose (what the??).  My stomach is about 2 inches
bigger than before I had the kiddo, but all of my jeans/etc fit in the waist, so I don't care.  I've ditched the scale up until these monthly weigh ins because frankly...I don't care.  I've found with the nursing aspect I am ravenous 24/7 and...I'm enjoying the heck out of that one!!  I eat what I want, when I want.  With that said, I am trying to make 80% of it quality....but you better believe that M&Ms and cake have found their way back into my diet!! 
In terms of exercise, I feel fantastic.  I did my half marathon, and albeit the rough conditions, felt really good running wise the whole time.  I'm optimistic for a spring marathon.  I rain a 3 mile time trial this week at a sub 8 pace (barely, but hey, who's counting??)  The real trick is finding the time to exercise, but, like most things, it works if you make it work.  I've been fitting in quality over quantity, which, honestly, was my whole issue as an athlete before...junk miles.  Looking forward to seeing how it plays out next year during race season.  Right now I'm just enjoying moving and being active.  With my little man grown up enough to do stroller runs, we've been combining our time together with getting exercise-something I intended to pass along to my kiddos anyways!  Up next is probably a 20k trail run in November, but just for fun.  I did it last year as my first trail run (yes, we all know I'm silly)....and it was actually the first race I did pregnant with Rob (although I didn't even know!)  Funny how that works....

Mentally - Split this one two ways.....first, pre September 30 ( back to work) and post.  The last few weeks of my maternity leave were great.  We have started to settle into a routine, and although Rob still wasn't napping too much, he was a happier baby.  He now sleeps for about 6 hours a stretch at night, after we feed him a night bottle at about 10-10:30.  The trick?  The night bottle has rice cereal in it, so it tides him over.  Sweet.  Things have changed since daycare, but that's another story.  So, mentally, kiddo and I had some sweet bonding time!  Then I went back to work.  It really sucked leaving Rob, but since he had the first week with daddy, it wasn't too bad.  The worst part?  Pumping.  I love feeding my kiddo...we bond, and even though its time consuming and sometimes painful (teething kid!) it's really cool to me that I can provide my son's food.  Pumping?  Blows.  You are hooked up to a damn machine and quite literally, are a cow.  I can't pump enough to replace what he eats for the day, so I still get up at 2am to pump.  Yech.  I know it might not last, but right now it's important to me to EBF (exclusively breast feed).  But it takes it's toll.  That's probably the worst part mentally.
We are also working on a schedule for ourselves....if I ever thought that 24 hours in a day was too little's crazier now!  With some luck, cooperation, and planning, it will work, but just as there is no crying in baseball, there's no down time with kiddo.  Would I trade him for all the free time and sleep in the world?  Are you friggin kidding me????

Emotionally - Another mixed bag, but pretty awesome.  Of course not being with my guy sucks, but when we are together....we make it count.  We go for walks after work.  We sing.  We dance.  We play on the weekends.  And we read stories.  At night...we cuddle.  I know eventually we will put him down for a 10 hour stretch, but since he needs a night bottle anyways, right now I feed him at 7 (we all eat dinner together!) and then either Greg or I read and snuggle with him until 10pm (we trade off).  He usually passes out in our arms and sleeps while we relax, read, watch TV etc.  It's pretty awesome, and I am certainly enjoying the sleeping on mom thing as long as I can!!
The one downside this month...I've become way more aware of the so called "mommy wars".  I'll probably do a post on this separately, but you know what I mean.  Everyone has an opinion on how to parent, and I respect that.  But there is such a thing as giving suggestions and making an assertion that the way that Greg and I are doing it is wrong.  About everything.  Feeding, sleeping, day care, you name it.  Yikes.  At the end of the day, we are happy with how we are choosing to raise our son and that's good enough for us.  But there is enough pressure out there to sink a barge!  Thankfully, my husband and I are on the same page, which doesn't always happen.  And the rest of the world can know what :-P.  Not with the suggestions-I'm a new mom, bring em on.  But no judgy wudgies-thankyouvery much.

Whew, that;'s about it!  Bottm line?  I love being a mommy.  My life has changed 100% and I'm fine with it.  I still have me - my time, my hobbies,and time with Greg.  That;'s awesome.  But now we get to share that with the new love of my life.  How could I not be the happiest girl in the world???

This weekend should be pretty awesome...tomorrow we are going to a fall festival to pick a pumpkin and maybe more....and Sunday is family home day!  (And Daddy Rob football time.  Lol).  What's on tap for you?

Monday, October 7, 2013

Somebody's 3! (months, that is)

The days are long but the years (months) are short.  Holy my kiddo a big 3 months already?  Such a big man!  Let's see what Rob-ster is up to this month....

Rob: Month 3

It's been a chock full month in casa glaser - a half marathon, mom going back to work, a week with
dad, mom's birthday and OF COURSE some kiddo milestone's!  In the third month of life, this is what's in and out according to the boss of the house (Rob, duh!)
Watching sports with Daddy (especially hockey!), going for runs with mommy (we like going fast!).  Chatting with mommy and daddy in the morning, giving the gossip on the neighborhood (serious baby talk in the house), flirting with the ladies, taking strolls around the neighborhood, and chewing on your hands.  Man, you love those hands.  You're big into colors-you love being read to and sung to.  You love to be a part of every. single. thing. going on.  You aren't totally sold on the bath yet, but you're getting into it once you get used to the water!  You're also the biggest chow hound in the got your first taste of people food on your third month birthday (vanilla pudding) and we have added rice cereal to your night bottle.  My big man!

Still not a big fan of naps, but we are getting better!  You also hate being lowered into the
have this scared little boy look that just kills me every;s a WOAH, WHAT THE HECK IS THIS! look!! also hate being still.  You adore moving, and really have places to go.  You're a pretty cool kid, but don't do well with down time.  If you're out, you're out, but when you're need to be entertained, dammit!

This is TONS better, dude.  Yay!  We are still working on transitioning to crib, but you nap reasonably well in your bassinet, and you napped in the crib during your daycare trial.  Yay!  You are sleeping a zillion times better at night...we do a feed at 7, and about half the time you pass out till your night bottle at 10, when you'll go down until 3...4....or even 5!  Woohoo!!  This has helped me out with my return to work, even though I still get up at 2am to pump to keep up with you!  We still take at least one nap on mommy each night or morning....that's partially you liking to snuggle and mommy loving her ro-bear time!  nothing wrong with that....

Dude, you rock out at the noms.  You are eating at least 8-9 times a day, which works out well when I feed you, but is super hard when you do the bottle.  You take a bottle like a champ, but I'm having a hard time pumping to keep up with you!  Thank goodness for my flexible boss....hoping I can spend enough time with you in the next few months to keep this breastfeeding up....I hate the thought of giving your formula.  But when you eat 16 ounces in 8 hours and I can only pump 11....well, we are
working on it!  Even though you sleep 6 hours at night, I still get up to pump.  I won't give up, dude.  I promise.

Rolling Over - Yep, we got this on video!  You are such a strong guy.  No more swaddles for got places to go!
Cutting a tooth - Noticed this one a few weeks ago.  You are on such a fast track, dude.  Wow.
Solid food -As I said earlier, we introduced baby cereal and a taste of vanilla pudding this month.  You adore food.  Typical boy :-P

Best Moment of the Month:
This is becoming harder and harder, but I think it would have to be my birthday.  Last year on my birthday, I wished for you.  This year....I didn't need wishes.  I had the perfect day....and I was so happy to spend half of it with you!  (And daddy too of course).  I also have to mention mornings...every morning, we chat about our day.  You smile and laugh with me, and it sets the
mood for the day right away.  I never thought 5:30 am could be so good!

Looking Forward to:
Our first co-race (we have a 5k to do!), more babbles, sitting up like a big boy (you rock out the bumbo already!), and halloween!  Can't wait to take you trick or treating and dress up in your costume!

Every day just keeps getting better.....

Friday, October 4, 2013

Back to School, Back to School (

Wow, I survived!! I know it’s no big deal to make it to Friday for you all, but after 12 weeks of baby duty….it was shell shock! I came back to 1600 emails in my inbox, a slew of last minute projects, and looming deadlines. Full force. Yikes. So I’ve put in a bunch of hours, made a zillion phone calls, checked emails, taken meetings, and whew!
I realize I get no gold star for any of this, but it’s been an adjustment for sure. I’ve bee used to no sleep, baby feeding, burping, changing, snuggling, and soothing. And maybe a shower. Or lunch,. But certainly not both.
There’s benefits and drawbacks, of course, to being back in the swing of things….and because I’m positive, let’s start out with the good!
Being back to work is great because….
I feel so much more accomplished.
I get to talk to grown ups!
I actually get to eat my lunch. With two hands. And my coffee is warm when I drink it!
I can sing to my radio in the car for an hour during my commute. Or….it can be quiet. Wow.
I can get to the gym most days to swim or run. Without interruption.
But….it also sucks to be back….
I miss my little guy. I only get snuggles for a few hours each night. Boo.
I hate pumping. With a passion. And I can’t seem to do it as well as when I am at home.
I’m MISSING EVERYTHING. What if he crawls? Or talks? Or walks? Or drives a car? And I miss it??? (I know, lol)
The laundry is piling up. And dinner is a sandwich.
I miss my little guy. Worth repeating.
Granted, Greg has been home with him this week, so it’s good to know there is Daddy week. Next week will be the real test….I’m not looking forward to it. Anyone have a cool million they need taken off their hands? J
With that said, I plan to soak up and enjoy every minute I have with my little dudes….this weekend we have a family dinner on Saturday, and Mommy Daddy Ro-Bear day on Sunday (with cleaning, cooking and shopping, too :-P) Ahh, the wonderful life. I love it. For real.
How did you cope with your return to work if you have kiddos?

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Birthday Wishes

Hi all!  Hope your week is treating you well and happy happy hump day.  Post forthcoming about my return to work (spoiler alert-we're all alive!) but since today is a happy day, I'll not dwell on worky work stuff :-P Yay, it's my birthay!  Aside from being a Wednesday and having to work, it's been an amazing day.  My boss was cool enough to let me knock off early, so I've spent the day doing my favorite things.....
I did my 31 miles....usually I do a "birthday triathlon" and swim, bike and run 31 miles.  Little guy was a super snuggler at 5am so the pool part didn't happen ( I know, I was SO bent up about it), but I did ride 30 miles and ran a mile (with my boys!).  This year was the quickest way possible to my age (usually I would do a 25 mile ride, a 5 mile run and a mile swim or similar) but it was great.  Although...I haven't ridden more than 20 miles since Christmas so my tush kinda wished I was turning 21....just sayin :-P
I watched my trashy soap opera, ate my favorite lunch (grilled cheese, greek yogurt and berries!) and am looking forward to a dinner being prepped by Greg right now (Cracker Barrel knock off chicken and dumplings....nom nom nom).  I have an appointment for a foot massage, lots of phone calls, texts, facebook messages and emails....and flowers brought to me by the first man in my life......parents are the best!
I remember turning 30 last year (uh oh, I outed myself!).  Greg and I went to the coast of Maine and rode the trails, swam in the ocean (yep, it was 70 last year too!) and did the Maine marathon.  He took me out to dinner for my birthday and I remember blowing out the candle on my half moon birthday cookie (who eats a whole cake?).  And I made my wish....and one month later, I learned Ii  was getting it.  Which makes this year the perfect birthday.....I can't ask for more!  Blowing out my candle tonight, I don't want anything else in life....I love my life with my men! *
*A million dollars would be cool.  I wouldn't pass that one up.  Just sayin'