No Chemical Oven Cleaning 101 – Specifically for Non- Danny Tanner Level Clean Peeps

I’ve been baking these at home egg muffin thingies for breakfast (Recipe will be Upcoming!).  They are a great alternative for a healthy breakfast and I love that I can make them at the beginning of the week, put them in some ziplock and I’m ready for the week!  However… I overfilled my muffin tin with ingredients and things spilled in the oven… It happens… no big deal… a fire alarm may have gone off with all the smoke… that’s normal, right?!

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Now, I LOATHE cleaning… specially scrubbing, but no matter how much I scrubbed with an oven cleaner, the stuff was not coming off and when I used the traditional store bought oven cleaner iit reaked to high heaven.

So… I got creative!  I remembered reading that lemon, baking soda and vinegar were a fantastic natural cleaner, so I got to mixing!  I added the Dawn to help cut through the grease and the Essential Oil because I have just discovered their “powers” and wanted to see what it would do!

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I created a “runny paste” of:
A Few Drops of Dawn Dish Soap
4 T Baking Soda
5 T Vinegar
Juice of a Lemon
A Few Drops of Lemon Essential Oils (I used Doterra)

Tiny plug for Pampered Chef: If you don’t have their citrus press, you need to contact your rep and get one ASAP!  This sucker gets ALL of the juice out of your fruit without any pulp/seeds/mess.  If you want more of a paste in this recipe, use half a lemon, or don’t use your press 😉  I’m telling you, it gets ALL the juice out!

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Now… be careful when you combine this!  If you aren’t careful about SLOWLY pouring in the lemon/vinegar to the baking soda, you will end up with your very own in-home 5th grade science experiment like I did… WHOMP WHOMP

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Next, you spread the mixture (I used a scotch pad to scrub just a scoach and get it all in there!) all over your oven, with extra “scoops” on your trouble areas.  Don’t forget the sides, back, and window!  Then close your oven and walk away!

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It smells fantastic with all of the lemon… just go and do something else!  I put the mixture on around 5:45 and then went back around 10 (honestly, I meant to come back earlier, ,but I completely forgot!).

I used the scotch pad when I came back to it (again… smelled freaking amazing) and was SHOCKED at how easily things were coming off!  It was like one of those infomercials where they just swipe a paper towel and it all comes off!  Now, of course I had to use some extra oomph and “elbow grease” on a few spots, but considering I couldn’t even get things to lift using traditional oven cleaner – this is a MAJOR win!  Then you wipe it all down with a kitchen cloth (Hello, Norwex, peeps!) or some paper towels!  DONE.

Check out how my oven looks now!  I feel like we just moved in!  It has NEVER looked this good!  I want to bottle this stuff just to have on hand for crazy hard messes!

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Do you have an all natural cleaning product or mixture you use to cut through messes like this?  Share in the comments!

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Bink Free… Now What?

Our Tiny Human decided that Sunday night would be the night to give up the bink.  I don’t think he understood he was making that decision.  He simply didn’t pick them up (yes, he had one for his mouth and one for his hand) before he hopped into bed.  His two-year molars have been coming in and I think he just didn’t “need” them in that moment.

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Now, the Hubs and I have been trying to figure out when to tackle this bink situation.  We had decided that Spring Break would be perfect.  Nick would be off of work, so if he got up in the middle of the night, only one of us would be super exhausted.  We had it all planned out.  And then homeboy didn’t take them that night.

Parents exchanged glances and Nick pocketed the binks.  We finished out bed time routine, complete with book and goodnight kisses, turned off the light and left the room…. anticipating a full melt down.  He just feel asleep.

WHAT THE HECK?!

Monday morning he woke up around 5:15ish.  While this isn’t completely uncommon to get up that early, we could see on the video monitor he was tearing his bed apart looking for the binks.  He usually spits it out after he falls asleep and puts it under his pillow.  A few minutes later, he cried for them and Mama and Dada.

We told him they were “all gone” and, after a minute, he moved along his day like normal.  Now… we did give him binks for diaper changes… so finding an alternative “bribe” took a minute of thinking.  We now give him a little snack or his juice cup and he’s fine.  The only other time he sort of sobbed for his binks was in the car.  This was easily fixed by distracting him with singing the alphabet.
By the 3rd car trip he took, he was fine!  So fine… that he discovered there were “CARS” outside those windows!  It never occurred to me… but with the bink in his mouth to restrict his talking… and a focus on the other bink in his hand… he wasn’t SEEING the world around him when we drove.  I wish I had it on video, but he screamed “CAR!!!!” and his little arms flapped up and down like an excited muppet.  “TWO CAR!!!” “REE CAR!!!””TRUCK!!!”

He hasn’t asked for it since Tuesday, which is great progress considering we started on Sunday.  Now, I can’t guarantee that he won’t find one that he’s hidden, much like a dog with a bone, and refuse to give it up.  Or that we won’t see another child with one when we’re out and about and have a melt down…

But we are a bink free home!  Even threw them all away last night for good measure.

Now… who has some other “bribes” you can suggest? 😉

Today Is My Son’s Second Birthday.

Today is my son’s second birthday.  I have been repeating this sentence over and over in my head today and it still doesn’t seem real.  Today is my son’s second birthday.  Where has the time gone?  I specifically remember a night, not too long after we brought our tiny human home from the hospital: he was screaming due to his reflux for probably the second straight hour for the evening.  I thought to myself “Self, you just need to get him to 2… just speed up time and get us out of the colic… and for everyone to sleep… and eat… just get him to 2”
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I wish I could go back to that poor exhausted woman and her equally exhausted husband and tell them so many things.

1.) The colic will end and you will sleep through the night.
I know it’s going to be a while… I know it will seem like it will never end… but there will come a day… around 21 months or so… when he will be asleep through the night.  You won’t have to wait in the room with him for what could be hours until he drifts off.  You won’t cry as he cries from the pain of reflux causing the colic to be at its worst from 6-10pm.  You will give him his bath, change into PJs, tuck in him into bed, read a story, kiss his forehead, turn out the lights and leave the room.  You will then have 45 minutes to watch whatever television show you’ve been trying to watch before you pass out on the couch… choose wisely.

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2.) He will be a leader.
This is what one of the kind and amazing ladies that work at our son’s early learning facility has told us.  He’s not stubborn… he’s a leader.  He knows what he wants, he knows what he has to do/say to a certain person to get what he wants… and when he doesn’t… he will tell you all about.

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3.) Considering the fact that he is a “leader,” he will be particular.
I realize that this is probably a given, considering item #1… but your son will one day decide that he does not want to eat any fruit that is red.  He will take said red fruit out of the fruit cup and separate them from the other fruits on the edge of the table.  After he is done eating, he will then take each red fruit and throw them off the table individually until you can get to his hand to stop.  He will one day decide that he can’t eat anything unless it’s cut into the tiniest of pieces, even chips or crackers.  Then the next day he will refuse to eat anything cut into tiny pieces and demand to eat like a big boy.  This will include full slices of pizza… 4 slices per meal… like a teenager.

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4.) He will have his own fashion sense.
While right now, Past Lauren, you’re worried about constantly keeping footed pants on the child, as well as a hat, at all times.  No-Pants Seiler will remain the Supreme Being in your home.  He will be an amazing sort of super hero… able to take off his pants and run from you faster than a speeding bullet.

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5.) He will make friends.
Few things will warm your heart more than when you will see him actually playing with other children.  He will give hugs, giggle, give kisses, hold hands and sometimes share toys.  note sometimes He will dance, chase and run… which brings us to number 6.

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6.) He will run… Fast.
Past Lauren, I see you on the floor… urging him to roll over- putting toys and color objects just out of reach to get him to inch toward you little by little.  Cherish these moments.  Once this child is on the move… he will never… slow… down.    Invest some time in some sort of couch to 5k routine so you can keep up with the child.  Never take your eyes away for a second when you’re out and about, because he will zoom past you in a blink of an eye… leaving you running after him and people laugh.

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7.) Once he nails the word “Dada,” he will eventually say “Mama”
It will take a long time for him to say your name, Past Lauren.  And when it clicks, it will be one of the most poignant moments in your life.  He will call to you in the morning when he wakes up, if he needs something, if you go to the bathroom, if you are sitting right next to him, when he is hurt… and no matter what circumstance… it will be amazing.

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8.) He will grow into a caring soul
He will learn to understand music.  He will know in an instant when you are watching a show or movie together that something sad has happened and ask “They OK? You OK?”  He will cry when the child in front of him in line cries.  He will offer a toy or book to another child when they look sad.  He will be a sensitive boy.

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9.) He will love you no matter what.
I wish I could stress this enough, Past Lauren.  It really won’t matter which book in the “That’s Not My…” series you read to him that night (which are amazing board books as a side note) or that his pants didn’t match his shirt on the one day he wore pants.  It won’t matter that he had peaches for both lunch and dinner as his fruit or that his way of eating vegetables is the tomato sauce on pizza.  He will love you and protect you fiercely.  He will only allow you to hold his precious Elmo for a time.  And he will repeatedly give him to you when you leave precious Elmo in another room when you get up to make dinner.  He will wrestle and climb you.  He will pull you by the hand to show you what object you can chase him around for the evening.  He will be your little sidekick and will shower you with kisses from the kiss monster (insert toddler growl) and spider monkey hugs.

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Today is my son’s second birthday.  We now get to look forward to removing the magical “bink” from our daily routine.  Somehow we will find a way for him to eat vegetables and eat with a fork and drink from a cup with no lid.  Potty training will be on the horizon before we know it.  He will start to really talk soon.  Most likely with questions that I won’t always know the answer to. He will challenge us in every way a two-year old can and should.

I’m not saying I want him to go back to when he was just a squishy little 8 pound newborn… because those days were tough in their own unique way… but I’m going to make this next year for him one that I cherish and remember and not wish away.  The day of his birth 2 years ago feels like a lifetime and a completely other woman away for me.  I’ve grown as a woman, a wife and a mom over these two years so much.  Today is my son’s second birthday.

Happy Mother’s Day, Super Moms!

Super Powers every Momma has:

1.) Super Human Strength- You can carry a toddler on your hip with a diaper bag and groceries up a flight of stairs to your home. If that’s not super human strength, I don’t know what is! Those heavy weight champs would have quite a competition if they were up against moms. 

2.) Mind Control- With just a glance you can have your tiny human, husband, and even your dog be on their best behavior or complete a given task for you. I’m still working on this power… It might be that it is just not be in my wheel house

3.) The Power to Steal Time- You have a house guest that wants to play with your adorable kiddo? Perfect. You whisk out of the room, take a quick bathroom break and put a load of laundry in. Then while chit chatting you can declutter the room your in, and they probably won’t even notice. A nap time session can get you a prepped dinner, clean dishes, a chance to check your e-mail, and maybe if you’re lucky even 20 minutes of trashy TV. 

3.) Super-Sonic Hearing- We can hear a quiet baby cry even though you’re in a room so loud that you can’t hear yourself think. Your super-sonic hearing kicks in best at night, if your tiny human makes so much of a whisper, you’re awakened out of a dead sleep. 

4.) Deciphering Codes- Every super mom quickly learns how to decode secret languages. Your tiny human utters a whine, and you know that he wants a drink immediately. You know from just one quick cry that your he has another burp stuck in his tummy. Everyone else thinks you’re weird, but you just know. 

5.) Amazing Healing- We’re just now really developing this power and it is AWESOME! A quick kiss on a boo boo or hug in a tantrum can solve all the world’s problems.


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Comment below with more super powers!

Nesting: Not Just for Birds

First of all, today is the first day since probably September where I have woken up and not been anxious about the things we have to do for the arrival of our little guy.  I think Nick was correct in his theory that once the monitor (which I really need to figure out how to use!) and the curtains were installed (thanks for the help, Dad!) I would calm down.

As of now, all major furniture and elements are in the nursery.  We’re still waiting on the side table for the rocking chair, but that should be here tomorrow.  We also need to install the dimmer, new light fixture and other artwork in the room.

We’re contemplating hanging the mobile directly from the ceiling at this point because of the width of the rails on the crib.  We can’t find a mobile arm that attaches to it!  I’ve Frankensteined one together, but it’s not as sturdy as I’d like and it just looks… odd.   However, that would mean that we need to figure out how to hang the thing from the ceiling…

We need to put the books in the bookshelf and make the superhero storage containers (which Michelle is going to help me with tomorrow), but besides those little things… I dare say the nursery is almost there!

As far as the pregnancy: my morning sickness has calmed down so it is only every now and again and not every day… Hallelujah!  My hands have swollen enough to warrant not wearing my engagement ring and wedding band, but while out shopping on Saturday with Kara, I picked up an el cheapo band set that will most likely turn my finger green, but fits my stubby finger now with room.

I am officially in full waddle mode when I walk.  WHOMP WHOMP.  My feet have swollen only slightly… I can still wear all of my shoes so far that I wear regularly.  Last week there was one night when they got REALLY bad. Painful bad.  Dare I even say it… Cankle bad!  However, by morning they were pretty much back to normal.  I feel like I’ve been very lucky in the swelling department.

Still no insane cravings.  Sorry folks, I’m boring.

I did have a huge nesting fit yesterday.  For those of you that don’t know:  towards the end of a women’s pregnancy, she gets the urge to hard core clean, organize, fold, put together and all around get things ready for the baby’s arrival.  I had my first big wave of it yesterday where the kitchen, living room and dining room got cleaned.  Seriously… you could perform surgery in those areas!  I then wrapped presents, thus disorganizing things for a while, but by the time we went to bed, things were put back together.  Everything that we have so far for gifts is wrapped and under the tree (thanks, Kate for the help!).  We’re still waiting on a few things to be delivered/picked up/purchased, but so far so good!  I love wrapping!  Want me to wrap your gifts?  Just bring them over!

Now that I feel so much more at ease about the house (although I still need to “nest” through the bathrooms, our bedroom, office and basement), I’m probably going to become more anxious about the actual labor and delivery.  Up to this point I’ve been very distracted by other things and honest to goodness have not given myself the time to focus on everything.  Yes, we took the classes and I’ve probably read waaaay too much, but the nervousness about the labor and delivery has never been (SO FAR) like my preoccupation with the cleanliness and organization of the house.

Frankie "helping" with the bookshelf!  Really, he just sniffed everything and weaved in and out of the cubes when it was on its side.

Frankie “helping” with the bookshelf! Really, he just sniffed everything and weaved in and out of the cubes when it was on its side.

Frankie, the wonder dog, has been super lovey and calm lately…it actually kinda freaks me out!  He was calm and curious when we put together the book shelf.  As I wrapped presents, he just kinda sniffed everything as I went, but never once did he tear off into another room with a spool of ribbon or bow in his mouth to destroy.  Our little puppy is growing up!  *crosses fingers*

Stay tuned for photos of the nursery!  I’ll try to get at least some up as we work our way around the room with different projects and give props to those who have helped us out 😉

 

T-Minus 23 Days until our Due Date!  CAN NOT WAIT to meet this little guy!

Now That It’s Public Knowledge…

It is with profound happiness and sheer delight that Nick Seiler and I can announce that a sweet Seiler baby is on the way!
— Photo taken by Nathan Morgan and edited by Becky Moore: THANK YOU BOTH!

Now that is “Facebook” official, I feel like a weight has been lifted off of my shoulders.  It has been a long and windy road to get where we are today with this pregnancy and we couldn’t be happier.  I’ve felt guilty at times at work and with friends when I haven’t been able to share what has been happening.

First of all, this first trimester has been rough.  I’ve been sick every day.  I’ll take it though!  I think I would be more concerned if I didn’t have any symptoms… as long as I’m sick, things are developing.  I am shocked that the whole office wasn’t aware when I would hurry to the bathroom 1-2 times a day… Along with the nausea, I’m not allowed to take my migraine medicine, which has been an adjustment to say the least.  I’m allowed to have Tylenol and some soda (for the caffeine), but I try to avoid that unless it gets extreme.  So if I’ve been “putting off” getting together to hang out… I want to see you, I’ve just been feeling miserable (and probably afraid I’ll blurt it out before we were ready to announce!)

Nick has been the most supportive husband and baby-daddy in the world.  I can no longer cook certain meats, as the smell is now toxic to my nose.  Sometimes I can’t deal with the trash, dishes or other “chores” as well.  He reminds me to eat the broccoli, even when I don’t want to, and is quick with a cuddle and foot rub when he sees how exhausted I am.

Speaking of exhaustion… did you know that at this point I’m pumping 50% more blood through my body?  This makes me insanely tired at the drop of a hat.  I can be totally fine one minute, and the next I need the snoogle (BTW, preggo friends… invest in the SNOOGLE… it’s the most amazeballs pregnancy pillow!).

Along with Nick, I must say that my family and friends have been major support.  To my family: I AM BEYOND SHOCKED that we were all able to keep this under wraps until now!  I’m so proud and can’t wait to have “The Nugget” visit and play with all of you!  This baby will be spoiled for sure! 🙂   To my girls: Michelle, Kelly and Emily… good grief… it’s been wonderful to be able to vent, get advice and just chat.  I love the three of your so dearly and can’t wait to continue on this journey together!

We are going to be 13 weeks tomorrow.  I can’t believe it!  We’ve known since April 27th… and I feel like although on one hand time has gone SOOOO slow to get to the point where we can tell people, it’s also gone so fast!  It’s almost the end of July for goodness sakes!  Next week we’re going to visit my family in Indiana and I cannot wait to see everyone!  Before we’re aware it will be fall and Thanksgiving and Christmas and then… New Year’s.  I can’t wait for our little New Year’s Babe!

Although we have the names “selected,” as cheesy as it sounds, we would be more than happy with HEALTHY baby of either gender.  I never understood when people said that before.  Clearly, you must have some pull one way or the other!  Now I get it.  We just want this baby to be healthy and happy.  I can see Nick being dainty with a little girl while having tea parties and practicing ballet… I can also see him having spy adventures and epic comic-book-like battles with a little boy.  No matter what, our home will be filled with laughter and fun.

Although we are overwhelmed at times of the idea of childcare, clothes, furniture, food… you get the idea… we are filled with so much joy and know that as long as we lean on each other everything will work out.

After our last ultrasound, I’ve felt more of a bond with this little baby then I ever have before.  I realize this will only get more intense as we go through the next 6 months… but it’s beautiful.  Our baby waved to us and my heart melted right there in the Ultrasound Tech room.  I have no idea what this little baby’s life is going to entail, but I already love “the Nugget” so much…

I’m Baaaaaaack

We just got back from 5 days in NYC and I’m already wanting to go back!  I absolutely love it when we can get away.  There’s something about just not doing what you normally do and being on an adventure of sorts that really makes us happy. Nick and I have the best time together.  He is my best friend, and it’s clear that when it’s just he and I against the world… the word better look out!

I could give you one super long play-by-play of our NYC trip, but the highlights were seeing four… yes FOUR… broadway shows, walking everywhere, just hanging out and eating wonderful food together.  My upcoming blogs will be a review of each show and highlights from that day in the city with photos… don’t want to overwhelm you all 🙂

I ate fish at every meal while we were gone and got a quick burger at the airport as we were leaving and felt AWFUL afterwards… all that fish has either given me mercury poisoning… or I clearly was eating much better until the airport!

I just started up with the Morgantown Shape Up Showdown which is a weight-loss competition.  You pay the fee, weigh-in, and win prizes as you lose!  You get all of these amazing classes from gyms and sponsors around town.  I have a few co-workers and friends doing this with me and am excited.  I have 36 pounds to go before I reach my first “actual” goal. It’s time to get in gear! 

A very good friend of mine also pointed out some not-so-good eating habits that I have.  It’s not that I didn’t know that I had them… I guess I just didn’t want to admit I had them… and as long as I kept it to myself, no one knew.  But alas, this person, who I am beyond grateful for, just bluntly pointed it out how different my portion size is to what an actual portion is and some other statements that literally made me stop in my tracks.  It just took someone else saying it to me.  At this point, it’s going to be breaking a LOT of bad habits, but I’m there now. I realize I say this about every 2 months… but there is a different fire burning in me now.  I have to be down by June… I will be down by June.

That is all Blog World… sorry it’s been a while… I’m baaaaaaaaaaack