Friday, October 10, 2008

It's Friday. That's My Creative Title.

*UPDATED with recipes*

Well, it's been a good week but I haven't had much to say. Tuesday I got my hair highlighted. I had Becky add some lowlights for fall and I think it was a good choice. I also found out she is retiring on January 1! So before long I'll have a new person. This is sad because Becky was the first person to ever put color on my hair and I was thrilled to return to her when we moved home. But she has worked her tail off for years and I'm really happy for her. I already have my next two appointments planned out to give me the best timing before baby comes. Basically, I need to walk in there as close to labor as possible so I won't have to go in when I'm nursing a baby 24/7. It's so hard right at first! It's weird to already be planning stuff out like that. After my hair appointment I ran over to my favorite maternity store, Pickles and Ice Cream, and got a new dress and a new shirt. That was a treat from my mom. That night we had Bible study. I have enjoyed getting to be there so much. I attend Curt's class and I think he's doing a great job.

On Wednesday we met up with Courtney and Moriah and Lauren and Noah at Rice University. (Lauren and her hubs are Rice Owls.) We strolled around the campus for a while and it was a nice change of scenery. You might remember me mentioning that reading Baby Noah's blog gave me serious baby fever last winter. They live in Boston and I'd not yet had the pleasure of meeting that cute little man. He is as sweet as can be! And that Moriah has some seriously good hair. She is blessed indeed.

Yesterday Jackson's MDO had a pumpkin patch thing for fall. I had forgotten to dress my child in the t-shirt he was supposed to wear for it, so I had to run back up there and bring it for his class picture. I got to stay and do the pumpkin patch with him, which was fun. We painted a leaf, made a wreath, picked out a pumpkin, raked leaves, watered gourds with a spray bottle, did a beanbag toss (Jackson really got into this), and played with playdoh. Fun times. Afterward I met up with the LPM crew for lunch and then made a mad dash to HEB before picking up Jackson. I was almost late and I'm sure my blood pressure was crazy. Last night I made a chicken pot pie (not a frozen one!) and my co-worker Susan's "addictive salad" for dinner.

Today we are missing a playdate with my MOPS group, but mall playdates seriously stress me out. I am going to our church's women's retreat tonight and I'd just like to have a calm day at home until then.

A little update on Jackson: He is doing great with his tee-tee potty training, even when we're out and about. He does not like to go in his pull ups or diapers or whatever he's wearing when we're not at home. We are making very little progress in the other department, but have had 2-3 victories at home. I decided to relax about the whole thing because, really, what can I do? He will do it when he's ready. So for now we are not as consumed with potty training as we were.

I guess we replaced that with discipline training! The Strong-Willed Child has really been helping me out. I can see where I was making some big mistakes, but thankfully Jackson is still very young and there is grace to make changes. I feel like I'm in control again and there is peace and joy between us. Dobson talks a lot about walking the line between love and control.

Jackson's current obsessions include his trains (which have edged out the monster trucks for now), a toy Air Force One plane from Auntie Michelle, and talking about dinosaurs and monsters. He is very preoccupied with monsters and it is tough to persuade him that there are no monsters when it's the month of October. Also, did I forget to mention that Jackson went through a couple days when he kept telling us his name was Thomas the Train? We're back to Tachi again.

I have a very busy few days ahead, so I'll see y'all when it's over! Have a great weekend!

For those of you who asked...

Susan’s Addictive Salad

½ lemon (Amanda's note: I wasn't sure where this was supposed to go so I squeezed it into the dressing.)
½ cup light olive oil
3-5 minced garlic cloves
½ cup crumbled blue cheese
½ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
Fresh ground pepper (to taste)
1 bag of romaine lettuce cut in small pieces

Place minced garlic in olive oil and set aside while preparing the rest of the salad. (You can strain the garlic before dressing the salad, but I leave it in.)
Add crumbled blue cheese and ½ of the Parmesan to the olive oil mixture.
Pour over lettuce, add freshly ground black pepper to taste, remaining Parmesan, toss and enjoy!

P.S. I think it needs a little salt.

The chicken pot pie recipe is here. It was good but I don't know if I'll try it again. I think I have an aversion to the taste of frozen vegetables. Does anyone have a recipe for this that totally rocks their world?


Lisa @ The Preacher's Wife said...

Of all the greatness contained within this post, the title has to rule it all. I'm crazy in love with it. ;)

Have a great weekend. That's my creative sign off.

debra parker said...

Have fun at the retreat. We have one coming up and I am so excited.

Holly said...

Enjoy your weekend, sweet Amanda. May blessings in abundance overflow upon your head!


PS I LOVE that you stayed at MDO and enjoyed that--wish I had been more like that with our first two in MDO. I missed so much, then, due to my selfishness for MY time. It's a shame.

Unknown said...

Hey! Don't leave me hangin'! What are the recipes for the pot pie and addictive salad?????


Holly said...

I'm sure your mommy friends of older kids have told you this, but I had to learn it and re-learn it until it finally stuck: they do NOTHING until they're ready. Potty training, tying shoes, riding a bike, reading, etc.... I've learned it again and again, and it's so neat when it finally "clicks" in their sweet little brains. Have fun and enjoy him right where he is. :)

Nicole - Life in Progress said...

I'm sure you've heard this before among all your many comments, but just wanted to offer some encouragement on the potty-training.

My daughter was doing #1 in the potty very well for, literally, months before she got the hang of pooping. Then one day she just did it, and that was it.

God sure finds creative ways to remind us that He is the one in control, doesn't He? It was a lesson I really needed at the time.

MamaCass said...

Tobey is the same way about monsters. Where do they even learn about that? I have never talked about monsters but every night when he gets in bed he thinks there is a monster and i have to reassure him that there are no monsters. I wish Jackson could have been at Tobey's Thomas the train party. he would have loved it!

Groovewoman said...

Amanda, your creative title is better than my writers block I'm experiencing. So you've got that going for ya! :D

Please tell me what MDO is? I am not familiar with that.. Is it daycare? Sounds like you have had a busy week. I hope the retreat brings some refreshing relief for you!!

Have a great weekend!

Kelli said...

I would love to know the recipe for a salad with the name addictive in it!

I am so glad you got a great hair cut while pregnant.... I did a dramatic chop a lot of hair off not once BUT TWICE during the same pregnancy. I apparently learn nothing!

Tricia Hicks said...

Amanda darling...we need the recipe for the addictive salad please.

Cheryl said...

What is "addictive salad?" Please share!!
Have fun at the retreat!

Amanda said...

Groovewoman, MDO is "Mother's Day Out." It's a program you can find at some churches where your kid goes for about 5 hours twice a week. It gives you some time to do things that are hard to do with little ones (like shopping) or it can give you some much needed time alone! Am I the only one that needs that?

R said...

my daughter (almost 3) is obsessed with monsters too! this is a difficult month for her--scary stuff everywhere.

Nancy Mon said...

When we had a dog that needed to be groomed, I always called her appointment MDO. There were times Tiff really didn't need grooming, but I needed the time.

I am going to come to part of the retreat tomorrow but I hope someone records the American Idle part tonight.

Immeasurably More Mama said...

Thanks for posting the recipe for the "addictive salad." I was hoping you would!

We like this recipe for chicken pot pie:

Pastry for Double-Crust Pie (I use the pillsbury refrigerated dough - very easy)
1/2 cup diced carrot
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup fresh mushrooms (I leave these out b/c Hubs doesn't like them)
1/4 cup butter
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried sage, marjoram, or thyme, crushed (I use sage)
1/8 tsp. black pepper
2 cups chicken broth
3/4 cup milk
3 cups cubed or shredded chicken
* I also add frozen peas but you can leave them out. Add any vegetables you like - just cook them with the carrot and onion mixture (see below).

1. Follow directions on package of pie crust for thawing. Roll out bottom pie crust and press into pie pan; set aside. Cook peas according to directions; drain.
2. In a large skillet, cook onion, mushrooms, carrots (and any other vegetables) and butter until tender. Stir in flour; salt; sage, marjoram, or thyme; and pepper. Add chicken broth and milk all at once. Cook and stir until thick and bubbly. Stir in drained peas and chicken; cook until bubbly.
3. Pour mixture into bottom pie crust.
4. Roll out top layer of pie crust and place over the pie. Flute edges
of pastry and cut slits in top for venting of steam.
5. Bake according to directions for a Double-Pie Crust on back of package.

* Usually I cover the pie towards the end of baking to prevent burnt edges.

This is so yummy and perfect for the fall/winter season!

Amanda said...

Mandi, that sounds much better than the one I made. I will try it! Thanks bunches!

Marilyn in Mississippi said...

Oh yeah! I DO have a Chicken Pot Pie recipe that totally rocks! It's the best I've ever had. We made a recipe book at the church I was in about 25 years ago and one of the ladies put this recipe in it. IT MAKES 2 PIES.

Chicken Pot Pie
4 Tablespoons butter or marg.
4 Tablespoons flour
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1 1/2 cups chicken broth (canned or fresh))
1 tall can Pet evaporated milk
1 pre-cooked chicken (cooked at home or from store)
1 can English peas, drained
1 can sliced carrots, drained
1 onion, diced
Refrigerated (not frozen)pie dough for 2 (2-crust) pies.

Pull cooked chicken off bone and chop into bite size pieces. Melt butter over low heat. Blend in flour, salt, pepper, and thyme. Cook over low heat stirring until smooth and bubbly. Stir in broth and Pet milk, stirring until thickened (about 1 minute). Stir in chicken and veggies. Pour into pastry lined pans and then top with other pie shell on top. (you may have to trim this top crust to fit) Put a few "vent" holes in top crust. I always place on cookie sheet in case there is any that runs out during cooking. Bake from 45 minutes to 1 hour (or until crust is done) in a 425 degree oven.
This is the best! Really not too complicated either.
AND...what I like to do is double the chicken broth and the Pet milk, omit draining the peas and carrots, and forget about the pie crust....makes a GREAT chicken soup!

Hope someone will make and enjoy this great fall treat!


Melinda said...

Well, I have the EASIEST Chicken Pot Pie recipe out there, and so far, it trumps every other "more complicated" recipe I've tried. It's also become the official meal that I take to people when we're on a meal rotation and it get rave reviews every time.

Easy Chicken Pot Pie

1 whole chicken, skinned & boiled, then removed from bones (or 4 cooked and shredded skinless/boneless chicken breasts)
2 cans cream of chicken soup
2 cans Veg-all, drained
1 Pillsbury All-ready Pie Crust

Mix shredded chicken with all other ingredients, except pie crust. Place one pie crust into the bottom of a deep pie plate. Fill with chicken mixture, then top with other crust. Flute edges and pierce in the center of top crust to allow steam to escape. Brush top crust with milk or egg white, if desired.

Bake in a 350 oven for about 45 minutes, or until golden brown.

**If using a shallow pie plate, reduce soup and vegetables by half a can each.


Kelly @ Love Well said...

Clearly, the baby is a creative muse. The title says it all.

I spent yesterday afternoon looking at Chicken Pot Pie recipes, oddly enough. I'm going to try Ina Garten's next week.

Anonymous said...

Amanda, our 2.5 year old son Joshua goes pee in the potty without me asking but then has a BM in his underware? He acts shocked like he didn't know how it happend and mad that it's there? i am so proud of him though!

I'm on the same boat with the discipline training! It's such HARD work! Leaves me feeling like a failure some day's...ahhh! It's so good that your starting young with Jackson! My 4 year old Noah is the sweetest thing but very strong willed!

Oh and that salad will be on my dinner table tonight! Thanks, it sounds wonderful!

The way I make my Chicken Pot Pie is so simple and taste GREAT!

I use the store bought 9in ready to bake pie crust.

Store bought cooked whole rotisserie chicken.

1 large can of vegetables- I buy the kind with no sodium. It has potatoes, carrot's, small whole onions etc. (I take the onions out)

Then for the gravy/sauce-
melt 1/3 c butter over med heat, stir in 1/3 c flour, 1/3 cup chopped onion, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4tsp pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until bubbly; Remove from heat. Stir in 1& 3/4 C chicken broth and 2/3 C milk. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. Stir in Chicken and vegetables; remove from heat.(Pg 297 Betty Crocker, Bridal Edition)

The sauce directions above are what make the dish! So much better than a can of cream of chicken.

Heat oven to 425
Bake until golden brown

My hubby loves when I make it! It's one of our comfort foods!

P.S- Your not the only one who could use MDO! I want to get my boy's into that. Our church doesn't have it and the waiting lists are so long at the chruches that do if your not a member!

Kimberly said...

Happy Friday, Amanda. Okay, so this Chicken Pot Pie Recipe rocks my world. Hope you like it!!
Chicken Pot Pie

Pillsbury All-Ready Pie Crust (refrigerated section)
6T butter
1/2C chopped onion
7T flour
1t salt
1/4t dried rosemary or poultry seasoning
1/8t pepper
3C chicken broth
3C chicken, cooked and shredded or cubed
3-4 carrots
3 red potatoes
peel, chop and cook fresh carrots and potatoes (I use about 3 red potatoes and 3 carrots, maybe four – I also add a little bit (maybe 1/4C of frozen peas that I allow to defrost but you could use canned or none at all)

Melt butter in pan. Add onion and cook until tender. Stir in flour, rosemary, and pepper. Add broth and stir to mix well. Cook and stir till thickened and bubbly (takes a while). Stir in cubed chicken, veggies and heat till bubby. Put in pie dish lined with pie crust and place the other crust on top. Pierce crust with 4 slits and bake at 400 until crust is done (about 20 – 25 mins.)

Good luck!!

bethany said...

OH...I so need a women's retreat right about now! I hope that you have a wonderfully refreshing time with the Lord!

Anonymous said...

OMG, can my mom make a salad, or what? LOL Come to think of it - the best recipes I have are from my mom! (Ask her about the low carb pot roast for the crockpot)!

When I make the salad, I had a few shakes of Tabasco to give is a little "kick"! Yummy!

Holly said...

My favorite chicken pot pie recipe is in the Siesta cookbook. I don't know, though, I think it has frozen veggies. But you could always substitute your favorite kinds. The sauce for this chicken pot pie is the BEST! It's also on my cooking blog with a homemade pie crust that I use.

Thanks for posting the salad recipe. I forgot to ask and meant to!


Anonymous said...

Amanda...I love following your life with Jackson man. Those days are long since gone for me as the youngest of my 4 is now 6 years old. It's a blast to recollect those memories as you share yours. I also love that you were able to share in the MDO fall activity...since moving to the Philippines, I have really missed fall the most! Take it all in and enjoy every single minute. You are beautiful and are a super mom...of course, you have a good example!

About the pot pie...I hate the frozen veggies also and we also despise peas, so we leave them out! I started using fresh potatoes & carrots and like it way better. Here's what I have to offer:

2 pie crusts (frozen or homemade)
1 chicken boiled & shredded
1/2 cup diced potato (boiled)
1/2 cup diced carrot (boiled)
1/2 can green beans-drained (I usually cut the green beans in 1/2 also to make them more bite size)
1/2 can corn-drained
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/4 tsp thyme

combine all ingredients and pour into the first crust while topping with the second crust (I'm sure you know the routine by now)

In the end, I usually add a little salt to mine, but the others seem to like it just the way it is.

Hope that helps....have a great Saturday!

judy said...

There is a recipe for Chicken Pot Pie on 'Barefoot Contessa' that sounds wonderful.

I'm glad you're making progress with Jackson. God bless Dobson for writing 'The Strong Willed Child.'

Missy said...

Hope that you enjoyed your relaxing afternoon and women's retreat last night!

Have a great weekend.

Amanda said...

I'm also an Amanda, and I have twin boys who are 3 months younger than your Jackson. Interesting that he was into the bean bag thing. I haven't tried that yet. Did he just enjoy throwing them, or could he actually follow the game of throwing them towards the goal? I'm going to look into that book. Currently one of mine has become very stubborn. Thanks for sharing!!

Jan said...

I've made that salad and it is sooo good. It'll make you thirsty, for sure.
Have fun and rest, rest, rest.


Michele said...

"It's Friday" sounds like the best creative title there is to me:) So glad the potty training thing is going better with Jackson. Another great read by James Dobson is "Bringing up Boys." It is on my bookshelf, but doesn't collect too much dust because I always have to go back and see what Dobson's advice is. It is particularly helpful for me since I only had sisters growing up and only 1 boy cousin that I saw frequently.

You are a very wise lady to plan your hair appointments close to having the baby b/c once she gets here all you do is nurse and sleep if you can.

Have a great weekend. Thanks for sharing the salad recipe. Salads are actually my favorite food, so I will definitely try it out.

Miss Michelle said...

We have a recipe that I got from Southern Living years ago. Every few years I will try a new one, but this is the one I keep coming back to. My husband says for me to quit searching for a better one. : )

Have a great weekend! Michelle
PS - I agree that frozen veggies in chicken pot pie is just plain old nasty!

Old-Fashioned Chicken Pot Pie

2 cups cooked chicken, shredded
2 large potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 stalks celery, sliced
4 large carrots, peeled and sliced
2 cups fresh peas, shelled (optional)
bay leaf
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup flour
1 cup milk
3 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 tsp jane's seasoned salt (or regular, but jane's is beyond awesome and makes a big difference - trust me you will be a convert if you find it)
1/2 tsp fresh pepper
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp nutmeg
Can of grands flaky biscuits (or favorite kind)

Fill a stockpot halfway with water. Add bayleaf, veggies, and potatoes and bring to a boil. Cook until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and set aside. In same stockpot, melt butter over medium heat. Add flour and whisk until smooth. Cook for about a minute, stirring constantly (until light brown). Gradually add broth and milk. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick and bubbly. Stir in remaining spices. Add veggies, potatoes, and chicken and stir until combined. Spoon into a large greased casserole, top with biscuits. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes or until biscuits are done.

B. said...

This is HANDS DOWN the BEST Chick Pot Pie EVER:

Mix left over baked chicken with 1 can of cream of chicken soup, 1 can of chicken broth, 1 can of Veg-All and salt and pepper. Put it in a Philsbury Pie crust. Cover and bake at 375 for 30 minutes. Uncover and cook another 30 minutes until brown.

It is really the best. I get RAVES over it from everyone who even smells it.

LEftovers do not re-heat well.

katiegfromtennessee said...

Hey Little Momma:)

It's always fun to hear about your adventures, Little Momma:) Wow, yeah, my best friend from highschool tried to do the nursing thing, and made it about 2 mos. I definitely want to do that if I have children:)...I want to let you know, Little Momma, that my last fertility treatment didn't produce a baby, but it did produce some heart peace in the fact that the Lord knows exactly what He is doing. Luke and I are now aiming for next Spring for invitro:) Please pray for us. We want to make sure this is what the Lord wants us to do:) It's hard some days, easier on other days; but praise the LORD! There is a peace that passes all understanding:)

I hope you have an amazing women's retreat! I pray that Tachi potty trains like a little pro, and I think I'm gonna download and print your pot pie recipe:)

Love in CHRIST,


creative gal said...

Thanks for sharing! :o) Pottying will happen. Just be patient and let him take the lead. :o) Hugs from NC!

Terrie and Carley said...


As long as there are moms in this world, there NEEDS to be MDO or in my day MMO. I thrived on those days. I thrived so much, that in the summer, I had a friend that we traded every other week to watch each others tots so we could get things done. No, Amanda, you are not the only one. For the record, I have teenagers that need to leave at the same time so I can get things done at home. You are not alone.

Blessing to you,

TC in Florida

Sunni at The Flying Mum said...

I love a good salad recipe! Thank you! And it looks pretty simple!

Lauren said...

Hey missy,

A really easy dressing that always rocks is olive oil, lemon juice (a little zest if you want it really lemony), and salt + pepper. It goes great over a spinach salad.

I add a little garlic and red wine vinegar and use it over pasta salad, too.

Shelly said...

I think I'm a wee bit early, but I just wanted to wish you a Happy Birthday girlfriend! I'm heading to NH to see my man tomorrow (I am very thankful for the New England tour right now - grin), but I just wanted to message you tonight since I would be traveling tomorrow!

Hope you have a great, some diva time, and some family time :)

Laura said...

Happy Birthday!!

Nicole said...

Happy Birthday Amanda! I just saw the darling post your mom left you on the LPM blog. It made me smile!! I pray you have an amazing day celebrating YOU!! I pray this next year is filled with things that "No eye has seen, no ear has heard,no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him"! Blessing to you and your family.. and Baby Girl! :)

Tiffany said...

Just checked your mom's blog and realized that today is your birthday! Happy Birthday!!

Dionna said...

First things first - HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMANDA! I know you're gonna have just a super special day because you have such warm, generous people in your life. :)

Okay - now to the other. I do have a recipe for chicken pot pie but it's vegetable-less. :) It's got noodles, rice, cream of chicken soup and a bisquick mixture over the top. It's not real soupy - it's thick. If you're interested, let me know. My kids love it.

Also - you may know this - but just be prepared that Jackson may regress in the potty training thing when the new baby comes. It happens but he'll get up to speed again once he gets comfortable with things. :)

Hugs on your birthday.

JayCee said...

It's Tuesday....and I'm leaving you a birthday message.
There is a 2nd verse to the "Happy Birthday" song that not too many people know about. I'm singing it to you right now.

Happy birthday to you.
Only one will not do.
Born again in Christ Jesus.
Happy birthday to you!

I'm so glad you were born and you were also "born again."
Thank you for your ministry! Have a really blessed day!

Fun Fit Mom Stephanie said...

Best book for parenting I have found..."Shepherding A Child's Heart" By Tripp....amazing!
Former Strong Willed Child's Mom,

mariel said...

happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Amanda!! Happy birthday to YOU!! Hope you have a beautiful day (I'm writing this on the 14th!!)

Tara G. said...

Amanda (& all),

Hanna Andersson has a pretty good sale right now- cute girl things, great quality. Sign up so you get the e-mail alert for the 2x/year 60% off sale. And if you spend $125, you get free shipping. It's easy to do. Happy shopping, ladies!

Lisa @ The Preacher's Wife said...

Just came over to say Happy Birthday!! :)))

Aunt_Nette said...

happy birthday! (((hugs)))

twinkle said...

Happy Birthday, Amanda! You are a precious jewel in God's crown...

The Wootens said...

It's now the 14th---saw your mom's post at LPMblog...just wanted to say:

Happy Birthday to YOU! Are you hitting the big "3-0" ???

If so, I'm only 3 weeks behind you.

Groovewoman said...

Awww Mother's Day Out... girl I have GOT to find me one of those around here. Could I use some much needed ME time. Thanks for letting me know what it was! I feel silly now!

Oh and by the way...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! I hope you had a GREAT one.


Erica said...

Hey girl,
I saw that it was your birthday yesterday..."Happy Birthday to you"!
We'll go get ice cream to celebrate a very belated birthday!

connorcolesmom said...

We are back from 10 days in Disney and I think I heard it is YOUR BIRTHDAY!!
Happy Birthday sweet Amanda
May God bless this next year with much love, laughter, prosperity, and joy!
BTW: Is this your last 20 something birthday ? :)

Unknown said...

Hi Amanda - I have a little boy the same age as Jackson and it's fun to read about your tribulations and joys with your boy. They mirror what I am going through with mine down to Thomas the Train (we checked out 5 Thomas books at the library yesterday - a RECORD!), Lightning McQueen, a strong willed personality, and behavior that is insane, erratic and adorable all at the same time. It cheers me to know that we are all in this mothering thing together! Congrats on baby #2.

valerie said...

Just wanted to wish you a belated Happy Birthday! I read your mom's post and just know it's killing her to be gone on your bday. I'm sure you all will have a blast shopping etc. when she gets back.
She cracks me up. I just read her post from yesterday.
Hope you had a great birthday!

The Allens said...

Next week I am trying a new recipe for a Mexican Chicken Pot Pie. I'll let you know how it goes!

Jan said...

It's Thursay. We miss you.