December 1, 2016

Instagram Story

Since last night I got on here to post all of this stuff . . . but ended up sharing my heart instead, here it is.

The past few weeks I have posted a few videos on Instagram story. Many of you have asked me to share the details of these ideas. 

#1 Mommy Store
I can't say I created this idea, because I have heard of a few versions of it, and my face on the dollar was an idea Shawn and I got from Bostyn and Bailey's six grade math teacher. But I can't tell you how much this little Mommy Store has changed our world. 

Here is what you need to know. Mommy bucks (similar to Schrute bucks for all my fellow Office lovers) are some powerful things in this house. I use them for motivation, discipline, rewarding the extra mile efforts, and allowance. I have kids asking for jobs to earn more. 

Next thing you need to know . . . don't be afraid to by soda and foods you wouldn't normally buy your kids. I charge $20.00 for a tiny can of soda, because it is not an item I want them to have, but since it is so rare in our house it is a HUGE motivator for a few of my kids (mainly Teage). So all week as he is motivated to get that pop he is remembering not to sass me, hurt Kaleeya, or leave his basketball gear all over the house. 

Everything has a set fee, but discipline items are usually around 1-5 dollars depending on the crime. For example last night I charged a dollar for every item I have to pick up around the main living areas of the house. I charged five dollars for disrespect of a few children, who will remain nameless . . . 

But I honestly now that they are getting the hang of it, I get to spend the most time rewarding good. Which for a mom is huge. We don't want to spend our lives telling our kids all the things that they don't do. That sucks, and it is lame. 

So what good do you see? You throw it ten mommy bucks and you better believe that the next day almost everyone in the house is doing it without even being asked. For example: Yesterday Teage was the only one who brought his dish to the table after breakfast. Gave him $5. Jordyn was the only one who had turned off her light upstairs in her room. $5. Today those things are being done, because everyone noticed that I saw their efforts and appreciated it. 

This simple way of doing it will make a huge difference, especially if you stock the store with things they desire and want to work hard for. They only get to shop on Saturdays, so all week they are gaining or loosing their money to spend on the prize day. 

Want to take it to the next level? 
That is where job charts, and laundry days, and check lists can come in. They can earn dollars for the every day stuff you are begging them to do anyway! And bonus . . . they will start to want to remember to make their bed and get dressed before they come down to eat breakfast. 

This system is the ultimate win for everyone. Moms can spend less time screaming about all the things they want done, and kids will feel like their efforts are being received and appreciated. And between the dollar store and big packs of little things at other stores, you aren't really out much real money. 

 Labeling the prices on every thing helps them see what their working for and how much they need to cash in on all their favorites.

 I have their envelopes inside the mommy store cupboard so nobody loses their money, and it isn't laying around the house. But also because every time they have to go get me a dollar or earn a dollar they open up to see what they could be gaining or missing out on.

I hope this helps!! Let me know if you have any more questions.

#2 Storing Nuts for Winter

Here is the video from Intagram Story that everyone was asking me for the recipes. I will post them below. 

I have been doing one cooking day a week for all our meals and I LOVE it!! Watch the video to get all the details!! 

These are some of our favorite tried and true recipes, most of which I got from my mother who I keep begging to write a cook book. I usually cook gluten free and sugar free so my Tytus boy can eat with us, but a few of these recipes are ones that I will not be able to feed to him . . . I will note when it is not a Tytus approved recipe. 

Manicotti: (not gluten free)
Manicotti Noodles
15 ounce container of cottage cheese
1/4 cup dried parmesan cheese
2 cups mozzarella cheese
2 TB parsley flakes
1 tsp salt and pepper
Jar of Red sauce 

Combine all ingredients but noodles and red sauce. Stuff cooked noodles (unless you bought the kind that you don't have to precook) with the white sauce mix. Pour red sauce over shells. Bake 350 degrees for 45 minutes covered. Uncover and cook for another 15 minutes. 

Cover in coconut oil and cook until golden brown (we like it crispy on the edges) at 425 degrees ( for Tytus's side I usually just do this)

But for everyone else I ad any mix of the following:
A few dashes of Mrs. Dash's southwestern chipolte 
a few sprinkles of maple syrup
a squirt of lemon
Sweet baby rays BBQ sauce
Thai Kitchen sweet red chili sauce (I might be in love with this stuff)

Serve over rice (we love the white jasmine rice and I cook it in a rice cooker)

Pad Thai
1 package flat rice stick noodles
3 ounces shrimp or chicken (or both) I used leftover Thanksgiving turkey this time
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 cup Asian fish sauce 
2 TB sugar (I use stevia)
2 garlic gloves pressed
2 TB oil
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
2 large eggs
Can of bean sprouts (Asian food section)
1/2 cup chopped peanuts
5 green onions
1 cup of chopped cilantro leaves
And I always add in a few other chopped vegetables:
sometimes broccoli, cauliflower, pea pods whole, water chestnuts, carrots
Whatever vegis you like! Great way to sneak in some extra. 

Instead of giving you the recipe I am going to give you a step by step on how to make this easy, because it really is an easy recipe just feels overwhelming when you try to do it all at once and your meat is burning in the process. 

In a large bowl with a lid soak the noodles in super hot water. I usually change out the water a few times over the course of preparing the other things to make sure those noodles soften.

Then I get out a bunch of little bowls. 

In one:
 whip the eggs with a fork. 

In another: 
combine the lime juice, sugar and fish sauce

In another bowl I chop up all the vegis and cilantro

In another bowl I put all the chopped peanuts. 

After all the ingredients are their bowls, in your Wok, heat the oil and add the red pepper flakes and garlic. Then cook the meat if it needs cooked, or heat it up if it is precooked.

Once the meat is cooked or heated through, pour in your eggs and stir and let them cook for two minutes. Drain the noodles while the egg is setting. 

Add the noodles into the wok and lime juice mixture and cook for another minute or two

 Add vegis and cook another minute or two. Sprinkle on the peanuts and enjoy. 

We like to use that Thai Kitchen sweet red chili on the top! 

Great to use as filler for lettuce wraps as well, then dipped in the sweet chili sauce.
Next time I will take a picture of my first helping so it can be a better glammer shot! haha

Pepperoni Pasta Salad:
Package of favorite pasta cooked and cooled in cold water (we use gluten free shell or spirals)
Favorite vegis chopped up
Sharp cheese graded or cubed
Pepperonis sliced in half
Cover with Ken's Stake house Northern Italian dressing (not sugar free, I take Tytus' portion out before adding the dressing)

Refried Beans:
5 cups pinto beans (I switch it up sometimes and use black or mixed beans)
Sort rinse and soak in water over night (or if you forget cook in the morning for a few hours and drain)
Drain in the morning and add: 
1 chopped onion
4-6 cloves of garlic
2 TBs salt
2 TBs chicken boullion (better than bouillon is my favorite)
Water (fill to the top of crock pot)

Cook for 6-7 hours then blend. You might not use all the sauce. I fill the beans in the blender than add sauce to cover the beans. They will appear thin when you first blend them, don't panic. They thicken up as they sit. 

We use these as dip for nachos, on top of tostadas, in burritos, in 7 layer bean dip, in tacos or just eat them by the spoonful . . . they are that good. Thank you Rachel for this one!! 

 So as part of my goals to be a better mom I am working on following through, so my kids know what to expect . . . but also trying to ad a little fun to our day every day. Here was last nights Instagram Story . . . 

#3 Snow Dance
A fun tradition to get kids excited about the changing weather! Here is a step by step video . . . 

Here a few links to those favorites in case you haven't tried them . . .

There are lots of other brands of the fish sauce and noodles that work great. But the red chili sauce hasn't been the same unless it is this brand. And this salad dressing is what makes the salad as well.


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