Monday, September 27, 2010

Homemade Chicken Stock

I enjoy watching Ina Garten on Barefoot Contessa. I don't get recipes from her necessarily, I just enjoy watching her cook. It seems so effortless and do delicious. Ina always uses homemade chicken stock in her recipes and makes comments about the taste and quality being superior to store bought. That got me thinking...

I could make my own chicken stock. Why not? I've started roasting whole chickens (which is a new favorite meal for us) so I can use the extra bones and parts to make the stock. It was really an experiment, and sure looked like some weird experiment. Here is the pot in the beginning.

Here it is after simmering for 4 hours.

As a bonus it smelled wonderful and made the whole house smell like Thanksgiving. I took a nap while it was cooking and dreamt that it was Thanksgiving day.

I also wanted to make my own stock so I could know for sure what the ingredients are. This is an ingredient list from a can of stock:
chicken broth (water, chicken, stock), hydrolyzed soy and corn protein, salt, monosodium glutamate, onion powder, chicken fat, vegetable juice concentrate (carrot, celery, onion) disodium insosinate, and disodium guanylate. 

Here's my ingredient list:
12 cups water, bones/parts from 2 chickens, onion halved, carrots, 3 garlic cloves, bay leaves, thyme, parsley, basil, salt, pepper. 

There's something to be said for homemade anything. I feel better putting things into my body when I know exactly what's in the food. 

Now, I don't know if I'll always make my own stock. I only got 5 1/2 cups of stock at the end. But maybe after tasting the dishes using this stock I'll change my mind. I can't wait to taste it.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Church is Exhausting

This is especially sweet because Macy normally does not cuddle.

I try and she arches her back and wiggles away. Even when I hold her on my hip she turns her body to face forward so she doesn't have to hold on to me. But, after church she is exhausted and will cuddle up to us on the way from the car to our apartment. We take turns getting her out of the car so we can have Macy cuddle time.

Macy is now 9 months old! We went to the doctor's this week and here are her stats:
15 lbs 9 oz. 
26 1/2 to 27 inches long (they measured her 3 times and got different numbers each time because she wouldn't hold still)
17 in head circumference

The doctor asked me if Macy could clap. I said that Macy did clap, but I wasn't sure if she knew she was doing it. Well, Macy proved me wrong by clapping on and off for the next five minutes. It was so cute.

Macy also decided that she was going to crawl on her 9 month birthday. She's having a great time being more independent and mobile. 

In case you're wondering what's new with me I just told you. It's Macy.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Harris Teeter

This is a grocery store that I don't normally shop in because it doesn't have the best prices. However, periodically it has double and triple coupon weeks. It will double or triple coupons up to $1.98. This week was a double coupon week. My strategy is to bring in all my coupons $1 and up and match them up with things that are on sale for close to the double amount so they will be free. My favorite coupons are the $1.75 off because then I get $3.50 off! I got a bunch of items for free today. I'm only writing my post because I was so happy with my savings. Here's the break down:

Total before coupons: $121.01
Total after coupons: $39.29
That's $81.72 savings!

Normally when the cashier says, "Thank you, you saved $30 today," I think, "Yeah that sounds right." But today, I actually said out loud, "Wow!" I can't wait until triple coupon week!

Macy and George Clooney?

That's right! She looks pretty excited to be sitting with the actor doesn't she?

We did see George Clooney, unfortunately, he wass made of wax. But it makes for a great picture. We went to Madame Tussaud's wax museum on Saturday. Normally it costs $20 a person, but with Groupon I got both of us in for only $9! It was a lot of fun. We had more fun that we expected. Here are more of our favorite pictures.

The figures look so real. Each hair, eyelash, eyebrow hair, and facial hair is individually placed in the head. The men looked like they had just shaved that morning. If I looked to long into their eyes I got a little weirded out. It felt like they were going to start talking and moving.

Later that night, we went to a birthday party for Macy's friend Grant. There were 7 babies there all close in age. The girl on Macy's left was born the same day as her, only 2 hours earlier. Isn't Macy such a cute baby? She's the only one looking and smiling at the camera. As soon as she saw there were 4 cameras pointing at her she started smiling. It was adorable. You can tell that the girl second from the right is about to push her neighbor, who then fell backwards on her back. Such a fun party.

Then it was onto our 2nd party of the night. We had home made root beer for Greg's birthday. Jeff had Macy and Mark mesmerized with his story telling.

Friday, September 17, 2010

One Step Closer

Macy has the kneeling down...

And the standing up down...

Now if she would get the crawling down.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Gifts From Macy

All my life I've had straight hair. 

No amount of hairspray could keep a curl. I was very envious of those girls who had naturally curly or wavy hair. Two things have happened lately because of Macy which have changed my hair life dramatically.

The first, I've grown my hair out to the longest it's been in over 7 years. I got it cut before Macy was born but haven't cut it since then because I had a baby to take care of and didn't really think about my hair. Ja is very happy about this. He's been wanting me to grow my hair out for the last 5 years. It's just past my shoulders, which may not be long for some people but it is to me.

The second, my hair now has natural curl! I don't know what all those hormones did, but I like it! I've been fighting the wave in my hair for the last 8 months by blow-drying and straightening it. Yesterday I decided I wasn't going to brush my hair out after my shower and what I got was nice natural curls. Today I put mousse in my hair and the curls are holding better. I'm so excited! No more fighting with my hair.

Even with the mousse in my hair is still frizzy on top. Any advice on how to get rid of the frizz?

Monday, September 13, 2010

A New Macy Movie!

For those of you who requested a longer Macy movie, here it is! Check out our Web Gallery here. It's the movie titled "Macy June-July 2010."

Happy Birthday Caleb! This one is for you! (Our nephew Caleb requests to watch the "Macy movie" on their family's movie night. So cute.)