Best Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins

One of my favorite baking goods in the world is....
Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

I am always looking for a fantastic recipe
especially since my collection of recipes have been in boxes (with the rest of our stuff) since April

Another thing I do sometimes when I am really bored is randomly leap from blog to blog...
(go from your friend's blog, to someone's they follow, to someone's they follow...)
It actually payed off yesterday...

Here is my favorite banana chocolate-chip muffin recipe yet stolen from a random blog I stumbled upon.
I've tried it out twice already this week and the muffins lasted <24 hrs each time so it's certified gold.

Best Ever (Stolen) Banana Muffins

You need:

1/2 C. melted butter
3 mashed medium over ripe bananas (the blacker the better, if frozen make sure you thaw them in warm water before mashing them)
1/2 C. plain greek yogurt 
2 tsp vanilla
1 egg

2 C. flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 C. sugar
most importantly:
milk chocolate chips!

How to:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
In a small bowl mix together (wet ingredients) butter, bananas, sour cream, vanilla and egg.
In a larger bowl mix together remaining (aka the dry) ingredients. 
Make a well in the dry ingredients, add wet ingredients and stir until moist.
 and bake for 15-18 min. (or until you can push on the top and it bounces back)

Let muffins cool and then enjoy!!! 
Breakfast/lunch/supper/anytime snack
Love banana muffins!


Working February

You know you have been occasionally a slacker when this is the first and only February in the FOUR years I have graduated that I have worked as a R.N.

2009- Ecuador
2010- Australia
2011- Hangin out in Saskatoon waiting for a job (the only time I was wishing I was working... badly)
2012- Finally! Working in February

And my apparent dislike for working in February continues next year too..

2013- Maternity leave

Oh well, there's always 2014!

Kitchen Cabinets part 2 of 3...

Sooo a couple posts back I posted the BEFORE kitchen pics and then Part 1 of the new cabinets, mainly the bottom kitchen cabinets in...

Well, now here's Part 2:
The wall and floor cabinets are in...

Notice the pendant lights Shawn put up over our peninsula??

Again, that lovely/hideous 'backspash' is the remnants of the 1970's
backsplash that we took down. 

Ah! We are so close to being somewhat done... haha... Have I mentioned how amazing my sister/roomie is for sharing her house with us all these months? 

But I am so excited.. Shawn's done such a fantastic job and now we just have to paint them, put up the backsplash and Shawn to finish the countertops.

Here's what the final project is gonna be pretty darn close to.
Wood floors, dark countertops, white cupboards and rectangle white subway tiles as backsplash. Only difference is that we are painting the kitchen a nice, neutral taupe. Cannot wait. 
This is similar to what we are going for... 



We had previously decided to swap our Aveo 2008 hatchback for a more baby/family friendly car.
After searching and searching we found a gorgeous 2009 Volkswagen (diesel!!) Jetta but sadly it was above our price range. I decided to call the dealership in Med Hat anyway, maybe I could try wheeling and dealing and get the price down. 

In the end after hours of calling back and forth and bartering back and forth we came to an impasse and I was left wistfully staring at the car online that was above our very strict budget...

But I learned something that week. The more you say no to a dealership, the more they try to win you over for a car. Five days and 4 phone calls from the dealership left unanswered I finally called back the sales manager and after I turned down their offer 3 times and said we were done and looking in Calgary and Edmonton much to my surprise he called back and matched our budget price.

We had got quite the deal, quite the car and despite a couple mis-steps along the way (forgetting my license plate, trying to finalize selling our car, a curve-ball thrown by the dealership) we now own an amazingly gorgeous and baby-friendly car....


Chelsey had just bought a brand new gorgeous 2012
Jetta so now we have twinner black and white Jettas...
Shawn makes fun of me but I just love freebies
and the fact that they gave me a free thermos and this
adorable baby bib... It made my day...

24 Weeks...

I have been extremely lucky this pregnancy and now that I'm 24 weeks I am in that perfect stage where my belly is finally big enough to suggest pregnancy (not over-eating on Caramilks) and I feel like I did prior to pregnancy (no fatigue, headaches or anything). The only downside is that I know that the third trimester is coming soon with all the stretch marks, back pain and baby kicking your bladder that I know comes with it... Shawn has been waiting this whole time for me to get cravings and I can't really say that I have had any yet, but he kept asking me so one day I felt like a Caramilk so I decided to just bump the "feeling like" to a "craving" level and Shawn has kept our cupboards stocked with Caramilks since than. How sweet is he? 

Trying to have Shawn play
photographer lead to a picture
when I wasn't ready

One where I was explaining
how to take the photo

And a picture that I was ready for
but turned out blurry
I figure between the three you can
get the gist...

Luckily, even after all the Caramilks,  I can still fit in all my clothes (although my shirts are becoming shorter and shorter I notice) but I know buying new clothes can't be delayed forever. I have a sneaking suspicion that I have the industry of low-riser jeans and pants to thank more as well as the baby because I seem to be carrying a bit higher so I can sneak on my jeans still. The beauty of wearing scrubs to work every day is that I should be able to hopefully sneak by without buying too many new-sized scrubs...

Our little guy is quite the mover and I am not quite used to feeling him do all his flips and kicks as I am excited to feel each move. I was super excited for Shawn to feel him move, it makes it more real to him I think, but I think our babe is slightly shy because when he feels Shawn's hand pressing down he settles down real quick. We have our names narrowed down to two finalists. One name that I chose and Shawn liked, and the other that Shawn chose and I liked. I think we are gonna just wait until he comes and then we will decide which name fits him better... But I did have my primary class of 7-yr-olds vote and it was 6-3 for Shawn's pick, one little boy said it was 'a super cool name' so now I am leaning towards Shawn's name... :D


Happy Random Day Nothing To Do With Valentines...

Shawn is one of those anti-Valentines day people.
I don't mind since I don't lean either way; celebrating it or not is fine by me.
and the fact that he does numerous sweet things for me any given day helps too... :D

Buuuuut... Valentines just happened to be the day after grocery shopping and finding this 
adorable idea on pinterest.

So he got a huge 'Happy random day nothing to do with Valentines, I love you' rice krispie Kiss

Doesn't look as perfectly cute as on pinterest
but that's because I didn't have a funnel
big enough so I just made do with a bowl
and kind of winged the shape...
Still cute tho eh?

And when I came home from work I found Caramilk's in our cupboard that he bought for me
But that's a whole 'nother story...
Whether you celebrate Valentine's Day or not...
Hope you had a fantastic day!



Time to Get My Needle Out...

You know how, once or twice in your life, you are wearing a pair of really worn-in pants; you bend over, hear a slight 'riiiiiip' and you stand up in horror as your hand whips to your behind to check out the damage? 99% of the time, there is no true rip. 

In the end, I think I have actually ripped ONE pair of pants, ever, in my life. And they were 10 years old.

This does not apply to Shawn.

The first time he came home and told me he ripped his jeans at work, I laughed and told him he worked too hard. 
The second time he came home with ripped jeans I was amazed.
The third time I started to sense a pattern.

And now, Shawn is left with literally no pants intact. Literally.
A closet full perfectly good jeans... Except they all have a rip in the crotch. 
And he refuses to buy new pants.
So now he walks around in jeans with rips in the butt and usually it's not so noticeable until he sat down on the couch yesterday and...

Something tells me he is gonna have to give in and actually buy himself another pair of pants.
Maybe two. And maybe one pair should be solely for non-work events so they can have a hope to survive intact for greater than 4 months. 

Who knew that Shawn's body was so toxic to pants?
His rump is quite conducive to splitting jeans.
Maybe I should take up mending so we can extend the life of these helpless, innocent pants. 


4 years after graduating I now officially have a permanent position!!! Last week I got the good news that I now have a .68 3C/4A float position.

That means that I can now breathe easy that if I have to go off early (knock on wood) that I will still be able to bring home some money until the baby comes and then... and then... all that money paid into E.I. pays off because I will be on Mat Leave!!! 

How great is Canada? One year paid with free health care... Now I just need to make good friends with a dentist cause we all know my teeth can put us into the poor house. Please let this baby get Shawn's teeth genes and not mine. Oh please, oh please, oh please!!!

If I wasn't pregnant I probably would have stuck around in my temp .42 position because it's just a dream position being all evenings (days and I don't go together) and it let me pick up whatever and work half and half between Taber and Lethbridge but I feel blessed that I was able to get a permanent position right when I needed it. Even if it is a day/night position.... So long evenings, my dear dear friend. 

The one upside is that at least I will be seeing my hubby more... So what if I will be a partial zombie due to having to wake up early*

*Please don't remind me that in four months I will have a lil baby that will require me up even earlier; I am in denial. 


Best $1300 Ever..

So Sunday night my tooth pain got unbearable.

I couldn't sleep, couldn't eat but then I found my saving grace; cold water.
As long as I had cold water in my mouth I was not in excruciating pain. Perfect.

Problem was, I became captive to the water. I could not stop drinking for a second so by 5 am I was exhausted, water-logged, and running to the bathroom every ten minutes while making sure I still have water in my mouth.

Poor Shawn woke up at 5 am to me running up and down the stairs to the bathroom and so he came down to check up on me and as soon as he came downstairs and hugged me, I just started bawling. As soon as I saw him I just broke down and I just appreciated him coming to sit next to me and be there for me even though he couldn't do anything more for me than just making sure my ice water never ran out.

Finally, after the longest weekend of my life, 7:30 am came and I called Dr. Harder's office and plead my case and thankfully they said to come in right as soon as consults began at 9 am. By then I was shaking non-stop, I think the 8 hours of drinking ice water non-stop had affected my body temperature but just knowing that the end was in sight helped me cope a little longer.

So 8:45 am I was walking into Dr. Harder's office with my cup of water firmly grasped in my hands, but within twenty minutes I had been checked in, x-rayed and Dr. Harder had been in to confirm that not only was my tooth badly infected but it was in the transition stage to necrotic.

Then the good news, he would do my tooth ASAP. When he said that I just burst into tears, I was so thankful and relieved. This was the first time in my life I was happy to be in the dentist's chair. Five minutes later I was frozen and passed out in relief. I don't remember much about Dr. Harder or the root canal since I was past out from exhaustion and relief but I can say that, hands down, this is the one and only time that I have happily let them swipe my debit card. But thankfully insurance covers 80% of the procedure which is even better... $300 sounds much better than $1300 eh? Either way. It was worth every penny.


Last but Not Least...

When we bought our house and we walked into the kitchen,
this is what we saw

Backsplash had to go.
Upper peninsula cabinets had to go.
Flooring had to be changed.
Those were obvious...
(we're not even gonna mention the curtains)

We thought we could save the cabinets but we were wrong 
so now Shawn is piecing together unfinished cabinets and making us a new kitchen. 
My husband is pretty amazing, putting all his learnt skills to work.
(did we mention he's taking his carpentry apprenticeship?)

Backsplash is gone but not replaced yet... 

And he's making the countertops... 
Where does he get all this talent?

Did I mention he is doing everything in this house by himself?

The new floor is amazing... Just really dusty from all the woodwork Shawn is doing...
I can't wait to show you the final result... It's going to be AMAZING.

Just This Time...

Things tylenol is good for:

-Minor aches/pains 

Things Tylenol is not good for:

-taking care of pain that comes along with 
needing a root canal.

I don't know what kind of genetics are against me but no matter what I do, my teeth are bound and determined to fail me. 
Last Monday I woke up with a toothache. Pretty common for me. I popped some extra strength tylenol throughout the week and didn't think too much of it...
But it didn't go away, it got worse until I was unable to sleep Thursday night...

First thing the next morning I called my dentist almost in tears.
Bless her soul she got me in right away, x-rayed me and told me I needed a root canal.
-Expensive, sucky, but if it meant the pain would stop...

Then the bad news... 
Since I was pregnant, she suggested I just keep using extra strength tylenol for the pain. 

Then the even more bad news.
I had to wait a week for my appt with the specialist.
The consult appt

Okay... Fair enough... I got more than myself to worry about. This lil guy inside is depend on me. I can be strong for him. I can suffer through the pain. 

That night neither Shawn and I got any sleep.
Me because my toothache turned into a stabbing pain that radiated from my jaw to my chin and reduced me to tears. Numerous times. 
Shawn because my bawling woke him up. Numerous times. 

I don't know what was worse. The fact that my jaw was on fire or the fact that it wouldn't be relieved for another week or two at minimum. Not okay.

48 hrs later I am at work in Taber, pain worse than ever, barely able to string two thoughts together with the danger of my liver going into failure from all the tylenol I was popping. 

Then the perk of working at a hospital came along. The emerg R.N. noticed me walking around with my hand glued to my right side of my face. She convinced me to come talk to the on call Dr. and ten minutes later I was handed wonderful, beautiful codeine tablets... 

All I could think of was 'no drugs, no drugs, no drugs' but I was delusional from the pain and I needed some relief and the Dr. convinced me it was safe in small periods in the second trimester.

So I caved... 

I am so sorry baby, you are gonna be dopey for a day but first thing in the morning I am calling all the endodontists in the city and I am getting in tomorrow or the next day I promise and I will go back to just popping tylenol. 


Time for an Upgrade...

Shawn has never been a fan of my Chevy Aveo.

He calls it:
a clown car
a go-cart
throwing away my money

He says it's gotta go.

But I still liked it. I have always been a fan of tiny, hatchback cars. My dream car as a kid was a Toyota Tercel. Go figure.
Then again, I'm 5'5 and not 5'11 like Shawn...

But now we have a baby coming in June,
and suddenly, I am agreeing with Shawn.

Exhibit A)

Something is not working here. And if this is with the driver's seat suited for ME, you can imagine how well it works with Shawn in the drivers seat...

It's gotta go.