Mmm… Monday! Crockpot Chimichanga Recipe

It’s been a while since I did an Mmm… Monday recipe. This week I’ve decided to feature a recipe that has quickly become a favorite. There’s not really a hard-set recipe for this, so I’ll just explain what I did the last time-ish…. ish because it’s not measured.

Enchilada - Filling

Filling the tortilla

 

Crockpot Chimichanga

Ingredients

  • Frozen chicken breasts/strips.. about 2 pounds
  • Small amount of chicken broth (maybe 1/4 cup)
  • 8oz package of cream cheese
  • Your favorite salsa
  • Your favorite tortillas (large are best)

 

1. Put the chicken breasts in your crockpot.

2. Add a little bit of chicken broth… not too much as it’ll make it too soupy. If you don’t have chicken broth, you could probably skip it or just add a little bit of water.

3. Add a bit of salsa on top.

All finished! Mmmm... so much yum!

All finished! Mmmm… so much yum!

4. Cook on low for 10 or so hours.

5. When finished, add block of cream cheese and stir in until mixed together.

6. Spoon into tortillas and fold sides in and roll to seal closed.

7. Place enchiladas on a baking sheet, edges down, and bake at 350 for 10 minutes.

8. Flip the enchilada and bake on opposite side for 7-10 minutes.

9. Add your favorite toppings and enjoy!

 

Note: These are great to freeze after baking so they can be easily used as quick meals later. 

The Great Wait… For Orders

It’s that time. Time to start thinking about deployments and care packages and how I’m going to adjust to solo parenting without any communication with my husband for months at a time.

Yup… we are in the window for our orders (and yes, OUR orders because as a MilSpouse, I’m included on those orders). Huzzy will be detaching his current command in November and should have to report sometime in December.

Besides a three year tour recruiting in Michigan (which was kinda his choice), he has been stationed here in Washington state ever since he completed his training. That’s more than 10 years here, total. There are only two places he can be stationed (besides recruiting), and that’s here and Kings Bay, Georgia. KB is the armpit of Georgia… it’s 40 miles north of Jacksonville, Florida, so it’s definitely southern Georgia. It’s located on a built-up swamp and is a pretty isolated area.

It’s always been easy to stay in Washington because, for some reason, many people would prefer to go to Georgia (maybe because they like the heat or closer to family, etc), and 60% of the submarines are stationed in Washington. Never been an issue.

Until now.

Huzzy’s ability to look/shop for orders was supposed to open on the 1st, but now it’s been pushed back to the evening of the 13th. However, he talked to the detailer and was already asked if he’d go to KB… and to the least desirable boat type as well. He’d be miserable. Absolutely miserable.

We do not, under any circumstances, want to go to KB. Besides the fact that we love it here in Washington and absolutely hate weather in the south, we have a house here, my mom is considering moving here to help me with Skipper once she’s born (and she will not move to Georgia as she hates the heat as much as I do), and it’ll be financially detrimental to us. I have been planning on starting my own communication consulting business after she’s born, which I wouldn’t be able to do if we moved until after we moved and got really settled and THEN had to start fresh with no contacts. We also have a house that, due to the current market, would cost us several hundred a month even if we were able to rent it out… on top of the rent in KB that we’d have to do. I’ve looked at rentals there and, like here, the BAH is several hundred dollars shy of what we’d need to rent a house. So we’d be out probably at least $500 a month between the two… and BAH is more than $200 lower there. So that’s approaching $1,000 less in the budget. Not do-able.

I could get an additional job, of course (on top of Jamberry and my Navy Reserve stuff)… but the closest city where that would be possible is 45 minutes away with no traffic. Commuter traffic would probably make it in the hour one-way commute. Plus, then there’d be daycare expenses as well that would eat into it.

And really, I realize that this is something all military spouses go through, but when you have been told (and have 10+ years of personal experience behind it) that you’d never have to leave… it’s a rough transition of thought. On top of that, I’m, of course, just about two weeks away from full term and five weeks from my due date. I have enough to worry about without this unexpected stress.

I just hope Huzzy can grab orders to something here. Even if it is the least desirable boat.

 

Signature

Target’s Poor Customer Service

I sure hope I can write an update to this soon and say Target redeemed themselves, but the complete IDIOCY that I experienced yesterday was crazy. I started looking around thinking maybe I was on a Punk’d show.

We have a baby registry at Target and my cousin helped my grandma get something off that registry, which happened to be the high chair we want. They had it sent to the local store (my cousin even verified the store with me) and told me I’d get an email when it was ready to pick up.

I received an email and it said it was at a store that was two hours away. Whaaat? So I immediately called the store and talked to customer service, who was rather confused, so he gave me to his manager. The manager said it looked like the order was sent to the wrong store and then asked if I could pick it up from there.

Me: “Uh, no, that’s about two hours and a ferry ride away.”
Manager: “Oh, well, do you have the phone number to your local store? I could call them and try to set up a store-to-store transfer.”
Me: “Uh… I guess I could look it up for you on my phone, but it’ll take a few minutes.” (I’m wondering why they can’t look up one of their own stores.)
Manager: “Do you know the store number?”
Me: <laughs> “No, I have no clue what the store number is, but I suppose I could look that up as well.”
Manager: “Well, can you cancel the order and re-order it through your local store?”
Me: “No, this was from my baby registry. My grandmother in Michigan ordered it.”
Manager: “Oh, well, then, can your grandmother come and pick it up?”
Me: “Um, no, that would involve a 2,500 mile flight because, like I said, she’s in Michigan.”
Manager: “Well, do you have any other family members in the area who could pick it up for you?”
Me: “No, we are military… my grandmother is the closest family member.”
Manager: “Well, I really can’t help you without your local store’s phone number.”
Me: “Hang on, I’m still trying to get it from your website, but I’m on my phone and it takes a bit.”
Manager: “Oh, ok, I’ll wait until you look it up.”

I finally got the website to load and gave her the phone number to the store. She said she’d call and check to see if a store-to-store transfer could be done. Hopefully it can be.

But really, Target needs people, who are supposed to be managers, to LISTEN to their customers. And it’s odd to me that she, who is a manager at a Target store, couldn’t look up the phone number of another Target store. And that she expected me to know my local Target store’s store number.

Signature

Mmm… Monday: Zucchini Brownies and Zucchini Bread

This past summer, I harvested a super large zucchini from my garden (pretty much the only good thing from it this year).  What do you make with zucchini? Well, in this house I make my grandma’s Zucchini Brownie and Zucchini Bread recipe.  There was enough to make both, plus I threw some frozen zucchini in my freezer so I could enjoy it later (like now!). I love this recipe because with one recipe, you can make two different things. I absolutely love the brownies and the only thing really “bad” about them health-wise is the cream cheese frosting on the brownies. Or the butter I put on the bread. LOL.

 

Zucchini Brownies & Zucchini Bread Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

(Note:  If zucchini is a little more than 2 cups I just add a little more sugar and vanilla–if I am using imitation vanilla–I am a little generous with it anyway, but these days I only use real Mexican vanilla in my baking)

Then add:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon (I make rounded teaspoons)
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt

 

For BREAD: Pour into two greased loaf pans. Bake at 325 for 1 1/2 hours or until done.

For BROWNIES: Pour into a jelly roll pan. Bake at 325 for 30-40 minutes or until done. When cool, frost with cream cheese frosting.

***Loaves and brownies both freeze well, so don’t be afraid to make a lot and freeze it!

 

Signature

Bumpdate: 29-32 Weeks

<<warning… one 3D ultrasound face shot is toward the bottom… I know some find 3D photos or ultrasound photos creepy/triggering, but this is Skipper’s photo debut>>

Whoa. Less than two months before Skipper is due. Holy. Crap. This is getting real… and close! I do have issues, but most stem from other problems I have that are exacerbated by pregnancy.

Five years ago, I was injured while on my two week Navy training. Namely, my shoulder was apparently partially dislocated and my labrum was torn. It took 18 months before someone believed me that there was something wrong. By then, the damage and really been done and though it was fixed (by putting four anchors in my shoulder) and I have about 90% range of motion in that shoulder, I also have arthritis in it. It’s also, obviously, not as strong as my other shoulder and I’m much more likely to have it dislocated again. With all the relaxin going through my body right now, I have to be VERY careful.

The problem is, I have to sleep on my shoulders since I cannot sleep on my back nor my stomach now that I’m pregnant. I generally have to turn from one shoulder to the other every 30 minutes to two  hours. Add on top of that my every two hours bathroom breaks and the pain that comes from the shoulders not getting a break for months and I get fun nights like last night where I slept one hour between the time I went to bed at 9:30 and 3 a.m. I then slept from 3-5 a.m. and that’s my night of sleep. I know people say this is just “practice” for later, but that, quite honestly, pisses me off. I could deal with normal pregnancy up and down, but this? This pain and added into the lack of sleep? No, this is above-and-beyond.

Remember, I’ve not had consistently good nights of sleep for five years. I most likely will not for the rest of my life. The pain will improve once I can sleep on my stomach to give my shoulders a break, but that doesn’t mean it gets all better. Ever. I’ve been surviving on 2-6 hours on average for the last five years… and now I’ll be adding a newborn. I’m always tired already. I can’t imagine what it’ll be like once Skipper comes. It’ll all be worth it for sure, but sometimes I can’t help but wonder what it would be like to have ONLY the typical pregnancy sleep problems or ONLY the typical newborn sleep problems. I guess I’ll never know. Anyway, here’s my bumpdate:

 

How Far Along? 32 weeks today!

Photo at 30 weeks. Not the best photo of me, but whatever.

Photo at 30 weeks. Not the best photo of me, but whatever.

Size of Baby? The books say she’s supposed to be about 4lbs and 19 inches long… but she was that weight more than two weeks ago!

Maternity Clothes? But of course. I’m slowly losing the number of maternity shirts I can wear, too, as they are starting to creep up my belly.

Weight Gain? Too much. I’ve gained 29 pounds so far, which is two pounds more than my OB told me I should gain. But I’m also carrying a big baby.

Stretch Marks/belly button? I have some very small stretch marks on either side of my hips now. My belly button is the same… shallow at the top, but not out.

Baby’s Sex? Very much a girl!

Sleep? Sometimes (see the intro above).

Food Cravings? Nope!

Best Moment This Period? Getting a 3D ultrasound and watching Skipper be obsessed with her toes. She just kept grabbing them and touching them and playing with them. She wouldn’t leave them alone! Even the ultrasound tech was laughing at her.

I know many feel 3D ultrasounds are creepy, so I'm only posting one photo. It looks like she has my eyes, cheeks, and lips, and Huzzy's nose and chin (seriously, that chin... such a defined chin--other photos show it better)

I know many feel 3D ultrasounds are creepy, so I’m only posting one photo. It looks like she has my eyes, cheeks, and lips, and Huzzy’s nose and chin (seriously, that chin… such a defined chin–other photos show it better)

What I am loving? Every day loving being pregnant, despite the pain and the lack of sleep.

Movement? Definitely, though she’s doing less kicking and more just shifting. Little girl isn’t so little and is quickly losing space.

What I’m looking forward to: Just enjoying this pregnancy and her movements still.

Other Updates… I had my gestational diabetes test and I’m so way far away from having GD that it’s awesome. Everything else came back ok, too. I had a few days of bleeding and so had an ultrasound then to check her (before the 3D) and at 29w5d, she was measuring about 4lbs and at 31w4d… so two weeks ahead. She’s in the 90th percentile. She’s on track to be about 9lbs, which is fine with me since I figured from the beginning that’s where she’d be based on my family history. I was hoping for an 8-9lb baby and am still hoping she doesn’t hit 10lbs ;)

 

Signature

Meal Planning #5

In my four posts (hereherehere, and here) on meal planning, I am always encouraged to continue posting my meal plans in order to help give others ideas. It also helps me keep all the recipes in one place!  A lot of these are Crockpot recipes because… well, I love my Crockpot! Some of these will say x2 on them and that means I’m making it for dinner, but while I’m prepping, I’ll also be making a second set to throw in a ziplock freezer bag and freeze for easy meals to toss in the Crockpot after Skipper is born. Most of these will make more than one meal for us, so we both eat leftovers for lunches. Meal Planning

Here are my  next three weeks of meal plans (including last night’s):

Sunday, January 11: Crockpot Philly Cheesesteak
Monday, January 12: Chicken and Rice Casserole
Tuesday, January 13: Pulled Pork Sandwiches & Baked Beans (both pre-made)
Wednesday, January 14: Steaks on the grill with baked potatoes and acorn squash
Thursday, January 15: Crockpot Beef Stew x2
Friday, January 16: Crockpot Sweet ‘n Sour Meatballs over Rice x2
Saturday, January 17: Homemade Pizza

Sunday, January 18: Crockpot BBQ Cranberry Chicken (I already have one of these in the freezer for after baby)
Monday, January 19: Grilled Steak Kebobs
Tuesday, January 20: Crockpot Pepper Steak x2
Wednesday, January 21: Stovetop Stuffing & Hamburger Casserole
Thursday, January 22: Leftovers
Friday, January 23: Homemade Enchiladas
Saturday, January 24: Vitamix Bacon Cheddar Potato Soup

Sunday, January 25: Grilled Steak Kebobs
Monday, January 26: Crockpot Chicken Fajitas x2
Tuesday, January 27: Loaded Nachos
Wednesday, January 28: Crockpot Chili x2
Thursday, January 29: Chicken Stirfry
Friday, January 30: Homemade Lasagna x2
Saturday, January 31: Eating out since it’s my baby shower!

Signature

New Year’s Goals and Theme

Wow. 2015. Last year was a pretty bleak-looking New Year as I was still struggling after our failed IVF and at that point, my husband was still firmly “no” on another round of IVF. I was contemplating how my life would look childless along with contemplating if my marriage could survive that.  2015 Theme

This year is, obviously, totally different. I’m 30 weeks pregnant and Skipper will be making her debut in the next few months. Life will be completely changed and while I have ideas of what it’ll be like with a child, I obviously won’t know until she’s here. Because of this, a New Year’s resolution is tricky. So this year, I’m going with one overall theme for the year and then some goals, rather than resolutions.

Theme:  Organization
I chose this because I think not only do I need more organization in my life, I’m going to need it even more after Skipper is born. I also need more organization in my Jamberry business as I’m currently moving up in the company quickly. Organization will help me prioritize my life and make things a lot smoother.

Goals:

  1. Make it to at least 37 weeks with Skipper and be ready for her (hello, organization!)
  2. Get five promotions with Jamberry (I need to be organized in my home office to do this)
  3. Start my own communications consulting firm and get at least one client (I definitely need organization to juggle this, Jamberry, Navy Reserve, and baby!)
  4. Lose all the baby weight by the end of the year, plus 15 pounds (I need to be organized in order to find time to do this with all of the above)
  5. Get every room in my house organized… read: no more boxes from when we moved here four years ago. LOL (obvious organization)

 

Signature