Can I get a head count of how many of you count to anywhere between 1 & 5 to get your kids to do something? I do it all the time. All the time, despite wondering what this means about my parenting skills, I prefer it to yelling or spanking both of which I have been known to do on occasion.

So...Little Man was sick, but coming out of it. We were packing up to go to daycare and work. I was trying to get my almost 4 year old, who is fairly self-sufficient, to get on his jacket. My attempts fell on the heels of him not wanting to get out of bed, not wanting to brush his teeth, not wanting to come downstairs...I was already annoyed. So when he wouldn't put his jacket on this is the unbelievable conversation we had:

Me: "little man. Put. Your. Jacket. On. Now."
Little Man: Waaaaa, Waaaa, Waaaa. "I can't. I don't know how."
Me: "If you do not put your jacket on by the time I count to 5, there will be no movie in the car."
Little Man: Waaaaa, Waaaa, Waaaa. "I can't."
Me: One.
Little Man: Waaaaa. Waaaa. Waaaa.
Me: Two.
Little Man: Ahhhhh. Waaaa. Ahhhh. "STOP COUNTING."
Me: "Three."

I could not believe my ears. Did my precious Little Man, whom I carried in my womb for 9 months, whom I nursed for one year, whom I snuggle when he's hurt, just call me an idiot and use it in perfect context? By the time I was done yelling at him up one side and down the other, I am fairly certain he will not say the word IDIOT ever again.

When it was all said and done, I realized that he really doesn't know what an idiot is. He knew how to use it in context, knew that it is a name you call another person, but didn't really know what it meant. What I wonder, however, is what's the next horrible thing he's going to call me and how long will I be waiting for that one?

Knocked to our Knees

Where have I been? I have been through Pneumonia with 2 kids, an ear infection, 2 teeth and melanoma. It's been a rough couple of weeks, but I think we have pulled through it.

So Little Man started with a fever one Sunday and just wasn't feeling good. I did what any good parent would do when he woke with a fever on Monday morning (and I had to be to work because my boss was on vacation and 8 new employees were starting that day), I loaded him up with tylenol and motrin and sent him to daycare. I get so angry at those parents...darn them for exposing my child, then I went and did it myself. He was okay at the end of the day and for the rest of the week. Then the next Saturday he woke at 1:30am crying in pain. I went in and calmed him down, he felt warm but I didn't do anything about it. He woke again at 2:45am. That time he was burning up and taking very short and shallow breaths. I gave him some motrin and breathing treatment. He was breathing normally during the treatment, but went right back to short shallow breaths as soon as I took the mask off. I took him back to my room, then decided to take him to the ER (30 minutes away). By the time we got there, his fever was gone and he was breathing normally. $100 later, we got sent home.

He threw up Saturday morning then he was in and out of a fever of over 102. By Sunday I couldn't get his fever down. At one point he had a temp of 102.5, I gave him motrin, and checked him 45 minutes later - he was up to 104.1. I called the pediatrician who said to take him in. This time I took him to the best hospital in the area (45 minutes away) that has a pediatrician on in the ER staff at all times. Another $100 later we found out he had bacterial pneumonia. Oh...and by the way, since your daughter is cranky and running a low grade temp take her to the pediatrician tomorrow.

Little Man got his antibiotic on Sunday and starting taking that with the probiotic miracle powder (if you haven't used this stuff for your kids when they are taking antibiotics, start - it's great).

On Monday Ladybug went to the doctor where we discovered she had viral pneumonia and an ear infection. Hellllooooo....this explains why my normally easy going child was being a cranky and clingy mess. Poor little thing cut 2 teeth during this whole thing.

Both came out of it like troopers and are back to normal. During this whole thing we also discovered that the hubs had another Melanoma. If you are counting, I think this makes #5. It was another one that he found himself and asked to have it removed. Another one where the doctor thought it was nothing but removed it anyway. The path report came back last week, and thank goodness it was a melanoma that was just on the skin level; it hadn't gone in any deeper.

The doctor seems to think that he is rare because his body is making melanomas out of moles that appear to the normal run-of-the-mill moles. This rarity does not make me feel good. It actually scares this crap out of me because he has hundreds of moles and we just don't know what's lurking in any of them. The doctor suggested that he get back in touch with his doctor at Mass General in Boston because he is the number one guy in the country for up and coming genetic testing for melanoma. I am working on the hubs for this. I am also working on getting him to call his oncologist, whom he only sees once per year, about a full-body scan.

After all of that, I was sitting in my office last week listening to two of my co-workers (just outside my office door) discuss the pros and cons of a particular tanning salon in the area. I wanted to scream at them!

So what appeared to be a long bloggy vacation wasn't a vacation at all. It was a time of sickness and healing.


I buy my diapers in bulk at one of the big buy in bulk stores (like costco). I went today to buy 2 boxes, and in the time span of one month the cost of said boxes has gone up $6 per box. That's right - $6 in one month. That was a 15% increase in cost over 1 month. What the hell? How can they do that? I know how...we are stuck and they know it. They know most mothers will not switch brands once they find one they like. We mothers are very picky about which diapers leak and don't.

I am so annoyed...those little pampers point do not make up for the cost!

Lessons Learned So Far

Things I have learned on my quest for a healthier life:

1) Chewing a piece of sugar -free fruity gum helps cure my craving for a sweet treat. I recently discovered a pina colada flavored Trident White. Delish. When will they have a chocolate sugar-free gum? Now that's something I could really, really use.

2) Everyone in the house of Cali Girl has been sick at least twice since the first of the year. I, on the other hand, have not. I am convinced it has to do with the amount of water I consume. I flush (literally)away all those bad germs.

3) Once 8-10 glasses of water a day become a habit for you, you find yourself sprinting to the bathroom less often.

4) Fiber One is my new favorite brand. They have some many new and great products out there. I love their english muffins, their bread and their frosted shredded wheat cereal. Their granola bars have peanut products in them, so sadly I have to stay away from them. I’m pretty certain they don’t read my blog, but I will post my request anyway: I would love for them to add refrigerator biscuits and/or crescent rolls to their line of products. The dough boy needs a "healthy" dose of competition to lighten his roly-poly self.

5) Said Fiber One products should not be consumed the night before a weight check. One serving on the frosted shredded wheat cereal packs 8 grams of fiber, which is 1/3 of your entire daily needs. I find that it leaves me feeling rather bulky in the morning and not at all prepared to face the scale.

6) Not all hummus is created equal. My brand and flavor of choice is Cedar's original, which has just 30 calories per 2 tablespoons. My local grocery was out of the original, so I opted for the Heavenly Spiced variety. After a week of spreading 2 tablespoons on my pita, I noticed that my weight loss had slowed down. I read the dietary info and notice that this little concoction packs 90 calories per 2 tablespoons, which is really okay when you plan for it. I wasn't planning for it.

7) If it passes by your lips, write it down. The only way for me to be successful is to write down everything I eat. It holds me accountable and is a great visual reminder of what I can and can not eat at the end of the day.

8) After 7 weeks of drinking only 4 ounces of wine a couple of times a week, I can not drink 16 ounces without expecting to be looped. Calm down...16 ounces is only 4 glasses. Sometimes I need more than a 1/2 cup of wine.

9) Salad with salt sprinkled on it and dressing on the side, for dipping your fork into, is not as bad as I thought it would be. In fact, I prefer it to the light dressings on the market that aren't so great.

10) 1/4 cup of golden raisins has the same amount of calories as 3 small peppermint pattys. I am all for healthy these days, by 3 bits of minty and dark chocolaty deliciousness might be worth trading in the golden raisins on occasion.

11) 1 reduced fat Chips Ahoy chocolate chip cookie is worth 1 weight watchers point and sharing it with my 11 month old makes it worth it.

12) Applebee’s weight watchers meals…at least the one I had….aren’t that great. I would have been more satisfied at another restaurant with a plain salad and a grilled chicken breast. I would have spent less points and could have enjoyed it with a nice glass of wine.

13) Wii Fit can be your friend and foe. I love the fun of trying to beat my score each and every time I turn it on. I don’t love knowing that my wii fit age is 54, a whopping 19 years older than my real age, and I don’t love seeing my cute little mii turned into a pudge pot.

14) The WW oatmeal raisin cookies, for just 1 point are really good! Unfortunately, I don't think they intend for you to eat all 9 cookies in the box one day.

15) Sliced strawberries with light vanilla yogurt on top are a delish way to have dessert and satisfy a sweet tooth craving once the kids are in bed.

16) I'm an evening snacker. I do my best to save a few ww points for the end of the day when I know my temptation will be greatest.

I am quite sure I could keep this list going and add to it every day. For now, these are the lessons I have learned and am happy to know them. If you have any lessons or tips to share…don’t be shy….leave me a comment!


I know the political season is over. I tried to stop talking about it. I can't help myself today because my butt feels burned.

It would seem that our new president is formulating a plan to bail out people who are at risk for foreclosure on their home. President Obama has dropped the annual income range to eliminate me (he's moved me to the upper class), which seems so odd to me since my pocket book doesn't feel out of the middle class (and it certainly doesn't feel like Channel pocket book of a Real Housewive of Manhattan or Orange County or Atlanta), so I am not eligible for any tax breaks. Okay - I knew that was going to happen. When his number dropped a few times, from $250K, right before the election I knew we were going to be out and it would drop to less than $75K.

His new bailout is my new beef. Why am I busting my bum at work? Why did I even go back to work? Should I quit and let my family become threatened by foreclosure just so we can be bailed out and enjoy our lovely home on hardworking Americans? No! You know why? It's not in me personality to do that. We built a house that was more expensive than we could afford on one salary, so I went back to work. Simple. I am doing what I can to make it work and to help us pay our own way. We found a way to live within our means. Sure, we built outside of it, but we fixed the problem ourselves. There is no way in this world that I would ever let someone bail me out like that - no, not at the expense of my fellow hard working Americans.

What would happen to this country if other families like mine decided "to hell with it" and just quit working to accept the fine free benefits being offered? I know what would happen...the system would fall apart b/c our tax dollars wouldn't be there to support the "freebie" system.

I feel us becoming more and more socialistic all the time.


How in the world, blogging universe, do you get a 3-year-old to stop the most disgusting and foul behavior you can think of? He's putting his fingers in a place where no fingers belong, and I am not talking about his nose people. Do they have books on this matter? I need a book. Do I need a parenting book or a picture book that says, "Don't stick your fingers there?" Quite frankly, I don't want to see a picture book like that and I'm pretty sure such book wouldn't be publishable.

I took my "no! That's foul and disgusting!" to a whole 'nother level this week when I saw it happen in the bathtub. I asked him what he would do if he knew his friends at school did that. Would he play with them? What would he do if they started calling him names based on his disgusting digging? What if I asked him not to touch me anymore because of it?

I don't know if I made an impression, but I am fully grossed out and don't know where to go. Help - has this happened to you? Am I alone in this foul behavior?

Owe! Owe! Owe!

Little Man has reached the phase where he says, "Owe!" over and over again until some responds with, "Are you okay?" or "What happened?" Some might find this phase endearing; I find it annoying. Seriously - a minor trip or a small bump to the leg does not require my mommy medical attention. My mommy medical attention, however is what he gets...simply to save my sanity, I respond after hearing "owe!" 3 - 4 times.

Yesterday morning I was in the kitchen at 6am preparing my lunch, my bag and the daycare bags before heading up to get the kids. I mistakenly left the monitors on overnight, so I heard a sleepy "Owe." "Owe." "Owe." "Owe." "Owe." "Owe." then an annoyed "Owe." "Owe." "Owe." "Owe." "Owe." "Owe."

I knew that I needed to make my move or he would just keep going for the next 15 minutes. I went upstairs and this is how the conversation went:

Me: What's the matter buddy?
Little Man: That wall hit me in the face.
Me: Are you okay?
Little Man: Yeah, but the wall just hit me in the face.
Me: That stinky wall. Can you go back to sleep for a few minutes?
Little Man: Yeah.

Fast forward and hour and we are at Daycare. Here was the conversation that took place there as we walked in the door.

Little Man: Miss Cathi. The wall hit me in the face this morning.
Miss Cathy: Why'd the wall go and do that?
Little Man: I don't know.
Miss Cathy: Darn wall.

And this was the way the morning starting. This little episode I did find endearing and humorous, thereby making it an exception to my "this is so annoying" typical attitude to this phase.

Lobsters, Laptops and Closets Oh My

In my little teeny tiny mind I think President Obama should give each tax paying adult a check for $30,000 and watch it stimulate the economy better than any stimulus package he can think of. Seriously - $60K in the house of Cali Girl would go a long way and would stimulate the economy with us finishing our basement and taking a vacation – pretty sure other households would do similar things with all that money. What would you do with $30K per adult in your house?

I’m a realist; I know that won’t happen. …So here at the house of Cali Girl we are doing out best to stimulate the economy without a fun little check from the government.

My Valentine’s Day gift to the hubs was a lobster dinner. We don’t believe in going out to dinner for lobster, so we buy it at the local grocery store and steam it ourselves and light a gazillion candles to get rid of the boiling seafood rank smell. It’s as easy as can be and delish. We both had an abundant and decadent amount of lobster – two 2 pound lobster each. Yikes, but hey we wanted to stimulate the economy! The hubs ate his dripping in butter and I ate mine with lemon only, which was a new experience for me…but my abundant tush needs to squeeze into a bathing suit on May 1st and that was only 8 points of lobster! Aside from my 11 month old bundle of joy crying and whining while we were trying to finish our dinner together, it was a lovely meal.

My Valentine (aka the hubs) bought me a laptop. It started out as a mini laptop (have you seen these cute little things?), then went to a regular size for $50 more, then ended with a Dell laptop because they were having a sale. You see…we really do want to do our part in stimulating the economy, so we upgraded. The hubs was very sweet and upgraded even further to get me a pink laptop. Thank you, my dear Valentine! I will look at its oh so girly color and smile and giggle when I see my big burly hubs using it.

Valentine’s Day weekend also greeted us with a new closet system from Easy When planned for a walk-in closet in our master bedroom when we built our house, but never finished it. We have his and hers reach in closets, so the walk-in was never a priority. It became a priority and now we have a beautiful closet system. When it’s finished, I’ll post some photos. Of course you know this means that I will have to further stimulate the economy and buy some lovely clothes to fill it up!

Foul Behavior

Often times I find myself saying I am not surprised by anyone anymore. I have worked with enough people and seen enough personalities, to not be phased by most actions. This weekend, however, I was surprised (but I shouldn’t have been). Maybe I was surprised because it was personal and not professional.

Have you ever had someone not like you because you have figured out who they really are and what they really did? I am in this situation now. I assume that she doesn’t like me because of this. I assume she doesn’t like my whole extended family because of this. Her actions were and are despicable, but none of us has said anything to her because, quite frankly it is not our place to say anything.

Her dislike for me and my immediate family was made evident to me this weekend when she proved it by snubbing my 3 year old child. That’s right, you heard me. She used my innocent child to prove her own point of dislike for us. It’s sad and petty that she would find it necessary to use a child, who has no idea the dynamics of what’s happening.

I wish I had some witty little quip to go along with this story, but I am not feeling especially witty or quippy at the moment.

Just Another Sunday Night

A random Sunday night in New Hampshire? Nope. This was Super Bowl Sunday night in New Hampshire. We fried up a turkey, which the house of Cali Girl has never done. Forgive me for saying so, but it just seems so white trash nation and I have tried to avoid it. Not to mention that the preferred oil for frying is peanut oil and I am allergic to peanuts, so I haven't been able to try it. Someone suggested it for the super bowl, so we went with and got out our lobster pot.

I gotta tell you, white trash nation or not, fried turkey is pretty darn tasty. It's not something me or my dieting butt need on a regular basis, but once every couple of years is not a bad idea.

Baking on a Diet?

We had a super bowl party, so I had to make a sweet treat to go along with all the other goodies. My diet and my love of baking do not get along. As a matter of fact, my love of baking is probably what got me in trouble in the first place. I've never met a brownie batter that I didn't absolutely love.

My solution this time...I made banana flavored cupcakes. I loathe bananas (every little thing about them sends me reeling - yech). Perfect solution. I can still enjoy baking and not be tempted by the batter or the cupcake (in this case) itself.

To make banana cupcakes: I used a box of yellow cake mix added the amount of oil and water called for on the box, then add the pudding powder from one box of instant banana pudding. (no eggs). The hubs, a devote banana lover says there was just a hint of banana and that they were delish.

Adding the pudding powder to any cake mix will make your cake super moist.

Hundreds Attend Global Warming Protest

Bed Head

Little Man had a serious case of bed head following his nap. I had to capture it - doesn't he look so sweet in this picture??? It makes me wonder why the grumpies have to come out in him.


The hubs built this beautiful custom mantel about 2 years ago. I have stared at this mantel, which is quite big, with nothing on it for 2 years. I knew we needed to decorate in a big way. The hubs would have happily lived life for the next 30 years without decoration on the mantel or anywhere for that matter; we have a lot of blank walls in our house. These walls were expensive, so I won't settle for just any ole thing to hang on them. I need them to be perfect.

I couldn't take the mantel any longer, so we set up a date night on Saturday. We went to dinner and took in some quality time at Pier One. We walked in the door and the first thing we saw was the picture. It was staring at us with a red sale sticker. We both knew we had to have it. We carried it around Pier One aimlessly trying to pick accessories to go with it - accesories on which we could agree. After waht seemed like an hour, we settled on what you see in the picture. A complete and total improvement that won't have me staring at the blank space and thinking annoying thoughts!

Stand in the Place that You Are...

Ladybug took it upon herself to stand alone last night - in the bathtub of all places. She was holding onto my hand with one hand and holding a towel in the other. She let go of my hand, understood what she was doing, then looked at me and the hubs (rare family occurrence that we would both be there enjoying bath time) with a look like..." you see this people," then she promptly sat. But she did it for about 10 seconds. It was exciting, but it also came with the knowledge that she was gonna be off and running shortly.

I warned Little Man that he had better watch out; Ladybug has been keeping a list of all the rotten things you have done (throwing a block at her head and making her bleed, dropping your geotrax airport on her head, smacking her in the eye even though you didn't mean to, stepping on her hands, ripping toys out of her hands, etc), and she's gonna get you back for each of them. Little Man was not impressed with this new turn of events and the laundry lists of injuries inflicted upon his sister.


This is our mantel. I look at it every day from our family room. Our house has an open floor plan, so I can sit on my tush, watch tv and see the mantel in the next room all at the same time. The only problem is, my mantel needs some decoration. We built our house 2 years ago...I think it's about time we throw something up there.

When it comes to decorating, I am always so torn. When we lived in an apartment it wasn't as big of a deal. This, this however, is my beautiful home, and I want it to be perfect. I have no idea what to put on this mantel. We are going on a date Saturday night - following dinner, we will head to Pier One, where I hope to find some inspiration for this mantel.

Anyone have any ideas?

Chili Chicken with Yogurt Sauce

Chili Chicken with Yogurt Sauce

Chicken Marinade
2 Pounds skinless boneless chicken thighs cut into 2 inch pieces
1/2 cup OJ
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 teaspoon canola oil
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 garlic clove minced
Salt and Pepper (my own addition)

Yogurt Sauce
1 8 ounce container of plain low-fat yogurt
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
2 tablespoons minced red onion
2 teaspoons chopped cilantro
2 teaspoons lime zest
1 tablespoon lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt

Combine marinade and chicken in a ziploc bag. Let sit at least 4 hours or overnight.

Make yogurt sauce and store in the airtight container in the fridge until ready to use.

To cook. Spray broiler rack and pre-heat broiler. Thread chicken and tomatoes onto 6 18 inch metal skewers. Broil 5 inches from from heat until chicken is browned and cooked through. About 6 minutes on each side.

Serves 6 people at 7 points each (if you follow points).

****I swapped the chicken thighs for breasts. I cooked the chicken on the stove top with a little cooking spray. I will roasted (cooking spray, salt and pepper at 375 degrees) the roasting veggies (red peppers, onions and yellow summer squash). I will weigh the chicken and count the weight as my points (but I will add a point because of the oil and sugars in the marinade). I will serve the chicken, veggies and sauce with rice.


And this is why I don't eat skittles any longer!

Tuesday's Tip Jar

Are you dieting? Does your sweet tooth sabotage you like it does me? My way around it is sugar-free, fat-free instant pudding. It sounds so simple, but it really works. I usually have it after the kids have gone down for the night. When that insane craving gets to me at 2:30 in the afternoon and has me searching for the nearest candy jar, I am now able to think of the pudding that I am going to make for myself. It works for me.

My Goal

This dress is my goal. In case I have said it here, I am going to the Grand Cayman in May for a wedding and vacation. We haven't been on a real vacation since our honeymoon in 2000. We need a vacation and I need this dress. It's a $139 dress marked down to $36.99. How can I not have this dress??? It would be perfect for the wedding and a night out whilst vacationing.

The problem? What size do I order? Clearly, based on the price it is from last season. Right now they have all the possible sizes I could need, but at a price like that and with spring rapidly approaching, I fear others will find this deal irresistible, thereby leaving me without what I desperately want. Do I order what I want to wear? Do I order what I am wearing now? OYE!!! It's just too hard to decide. A friend, who is very practical and financially savy (who also needs a blog alias name), has advised me to buy 2 sizes, wait 25 days, try both on, send the one back that is too big within the 30 day return policy. Do I do that now or wait until mid-March to do that? The fact of the matter is that I have lost 10 pounds since the first of the year and I am working my arse off to lose another 20 by May 1. Can I count on what fits me mid March to fit me a month and a half later?

The next arms. The flab on my arms that keeps waving when I stop. The flab that never sees the light of day because it is horrendous. The flab that no matter how much weight I lose never seems to go away. Aside from cutting it off, how can I get rid of it??? Does anyone have the answer? If you do, I beg you to delurk yourself this one time and tell me....please!


After my trip to Cali over Christmas, I decided that the hubs and I needed to start living healthier for our kids; they are pre-disposed to thinness. We need to make some healthy changes in our house, so that making healthy food choices and exercising becomes second nature.

In my quest for a healthier lifestyle, I am weighing the option of arising at the very early hour of 4:30am to exercise. Am I crazy? Somebody put this horribly insane thought out of my head. In all seriousness, though, I can't seem to think of another time to do it. I normally get up for the day at 5:15, I wake my kids between 6:00 and 6:15, then we are out the door at 6:45. I get home at 5:15pm, we eat dinner, do laundry, do the dishes, take baths and get the kids in bed at 7:00 for Ladybug and 7:30 for Little Man. Sometime between 7:30 and 8:00 I start my work from home (which I do 2 hours 4 nights a week to allow me to stay home from work 1 day per week to be with my kids - typically a Friday). I go to bed between 10 and 10:30. Where in that day, aside from Sweatin' to the Oldies on Fridays, can I fit in exercise? I can't. I can only fit it in my getting up at an hour that should not be known to me.

We have Wii fit. I had my age calculated at 54! That's 19 years older than my actual age people - not good. I am, however, chalking up to my severe lack of coordination and balance.


This Cali Girl has always been afraid of icicles. Where I grew up, we didn't have them. I moved to New England and you can't escape them or the fact that they must come down at some point. My biggest fear is that one is going to fall on my head.

Well, guess what! My fear came to life yesterday. An icicle fell on my head as I went out a door, which is used very little, at work. An icicle, that was hanging down past the door, was hit by the door when I opened it and dropped right on my head as I went through. It friggin hurt. Then I had the weird sensation of liquid running down my head. For a brief moment I wondered if it was blood.

MLK Day in Preschool

Little Man's preschool teacher, bless her heart, tries so hard when it comes to educating the kids around holidays. Yesterday was MLK Day, and Little Man must have had a lesson on it at school that day. He woke this morning telling us that if your skin was a different color you couldn't eat in restaurants. He believes that to be a current day thing. When I tried to explain to him that it was a long time ago, he was adamant that it was happening now and that Miss Fran knows all.

Now I find myself in a battle of wondering what is and isn't age appropriate. When I asked my son what dreidel was in December, he told me it was "a Jewish." Sometimes I think kids are too young to understand the depth of things. When I taught first grade we read the age appropriate books (according to scholastic) on MLK, talked about our visual differences and did an art project celebrating MLK. My conversation did not delve any deeper than "we are all the same on the inside." So, should a 3 year need to understand that our country used to have horribly insane and incomprehensible rules that made people sit in the back of the bus based on their skin color? I gotta say "no" on this one. I think he is way too young to comprehend it. Perhaps a lesson on what's the same and what's different would have been more appropriate at his age. I say let me and his teachers in 3rd, 4th and 5th grade further educate them on the day.

Tuesday's Tip Jar

Looking for a way to exercise and have fun with your kids? I found a really old exercise video; you might know it - Sweating to the Oldies! I pulled it out and asked Little Man if he want to dance to silly music with me and a crazy guy on television. He, of course, said yes. We had fun dancing together for 30 whole minutes. Give it a try and laugh with your kids!

Family Guy

Metro shared this Family Guy clip with Little Man. We don't watch family guy, and I must admit it's pretty funny. Little Man loves the clip and asks for it regularly. Enjoy!

PB Substitute

Oh my word! I finally know what you peanut butter fanatics have been talking about. See, I am allergic to peanut butter, so I never ever understood why all of you fans would go so nutty over it. I just didn't get it.

A couple of months ago we had Little Man tested for food allergies. We knew he had them, but we wanted to see what he had other than eggs and what nuts he was allergic to (secretly I was hoping the egg allergy was gone). He's allergic to all nuts, to eggs, to dust mites (yes, dust mites - that's another post all together), and mildly to soy (he can have if it is used in moderation.

I asked the doctor about seeds. I have been operating under the assumption that he is allergic to all seeds as well. He's not. In fact, she said most seeds have a very low rate of allergens. You run into problems when they are processed in tree nut facilities. She suggested we try sun butter as a substitute for peanut butter. It is made from sun flower seeds.

It didn't take me long to find some in one of the upscale local markets. They carry it in the health food sections for $5 a jar. YIKES! Anyway, I had the hubs try it first. I'm not going to lie, I was afraid to taste it. I have a serious mental block against PB. He tried it and said it was a good substitute (much better than the soy nut butter I brought home once).

So...I gave it a taste. OH HOLY SUNFLOWER SEEDS! It was incredible. I started eating it on toast and then on crackers. Then I realized it would taste delish with chocolate. I can finally relate to you PB lovers.

On Jan 1 I started my diet again (remember weight loss wednesday???). Anyway, I had some spare points for the day, so I went looking for that jar of sun butter. When I found it and figured the points, I nearly passed out! My love affair with this new food must come to an end!

Fiber One Lesson Learned

I love Fiber One. They have so many great products. There newest, at least new to me, is cottage cheese. It's delish and full of fiber. In effort to live a more healthy life in the house of Cali Girl, I bought fiber one bread.

I made a grilled cheese sandwhich for little man with that bread today. He got up from his nap and said my tummy hurts. I was standing in the kitchen when I heard him go into the bathroom. He was still in there 5 minutes later. I asked him if we was okay. Word to the wise....It would seem that 14 grams of fiber at lunch for a 3 year old has a laxative effect.

Tuesday's Tip Jar

As I was making a delicious WW marinade this morning, I realized I had the perfect tip for today's jar. The marinade called for 1/4 cup of honey. Before measuring out honey, spray your measuring cup with non-stick cooking spray. Then pour the honey in the measuring cup and it will slide right out without a sticky fuss. It works perfectly.

Now to tempt your taste buds, here's the marinade I made this morning:

Chili Chicken Kebabs with Yogurt Sauce

Chicken Marinade
2 Pounds skinless boneless chicken thighs cut into 2 inch pieces
1/2 cup OJ
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 teaspoon canola oil
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 garlic clove minced
Salt and Pepper (my own addition)

Yogurt Sauce
1 8 ounce container of plain low-fat yogurt
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
2 tablespoons minced red onion
2 teaspoons chopped cilantro
2 teaspoons lime zest
1 tablespoon lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 pints cherry tomatoes

Combine marinade and chicken in a ziploc bag. Let sit at least 4 hours or overnight.

Make yogurt sauce and store in the airtight container in the fridge until ready to use.

To cook. Spray broiler rack and pre-heat broiler. Thread chicken and tomatoes onto 6 18 inch metal skewers. Broil 5 inches from from heat until chicken is browned and cooked through. About 6 minutes on each side.

Serves 6 people at 7 points each (if you follow points).

****I swapped the chicken thighs for breasts. I will most likely cook the chicken on the stove top with some cooking spray and chicken stock. I will roast (cooking spray, salt and pepper at 400 degrees) the tomatoes and add other roasting veggies (red peppers, onions and yellow summer squash) to the mix. I will weigh the chicken and count the weight as my points (but I will add a point because of the oil and sugars in the marinade). I will serve the chicken, veggies and sauce with rice.

I'm looking forward to it...hope the family enjoys. Perhaps I'll come back and post a photo tonight.


Do you ever just feel so tired that something has to give? That's where I am. I am so tired, and tired without reason (which is a whole 'nother post), that I can't seem to make it to my blog each day. Not only to my blog, but to all those blogs that I love to read. I miss reading my bloggy firends' blogs. I miss knowing what's happening in their loves and reading their quirky takes on life.

Why, oh why can't life slow down for just a little bit? I always feel rushed. I used to be able to read other blogs on my lunch break and write 5 pre-dated posts on the weekend for my own blog. My lunch break seems to be non-existant now and my weekends are full of little people that want all my attention.

I vow to try find the energy, because I do miss my bloggy friends. Maybe I'll take up exercise - I hear that is supposed to give you some kind of super energy, although I have my doubts.

The Holidays are Over....

...thank goodness! I had a wonderful time celebrating Christmas 4 times, but boy am I wiped out.

We had our own little family Christmas on December 20th. Little Man was thrilled that Santa listened to him and came to our house early. He was vague in what he asked for, so he was pleased with everything. The toy he loved the most came from the $1 bin at Wal-Mart. Mental note for next year: only buy from $1 bins. Ladybug could have cared less about the whole thing.

We flew to Cali on December 24th. It was an 18 hour day. That's a long day for anyone to go through and Little Man was no exception. The hubs is now looking into some legal way to tranquilize himself or Little Man before our trip to Cali in November. Ladybug, per her personality, went with the flow.

We had 6 days in Cali of pure, un-restfulfamily fun time. 2 of those days 25 family members were together. 25 people in a small house makes for a very hectic time for the hosts; I know because my mother hosted one of the events. My father says it's not happening again - next time, he will take everyone out to eat. I suggested my wedding reception venue and charging people the $$$ per head. Is that tacky for a family Christmas? Cash bar? Sounds okay to me and only fair for the people that host it all the time - and somone else has to set-up, cook and clean up. Perfect.

While in Cali we went to LegoLand. It was a a good time, but a really long drive (3 hours) in a motorhome with 6 adults and 4 kids. Sound like fun? It wasn't too bad. We all made it in one piece and most slept on the ride home.

We flew back on December 31st. It was a 14 hour day of travel, and still very difficutl for a 3.5 year old boy. He just can't handle being over-tired. He was cranky and difficult to manage.

The New Year was greeted by the back of my eyelids. I am back to work and still feel like I am recovering.

Happy 2009!

Copyright © 2008 - A Cali Girl Momma - is proudly powered by Blogger
Smashing Magazine - Design Disease - Blog and Web - Dilectio Blogger Template