English Muffin Tuna Melts

Posted by: WoodElves / Category:

Over the weekend, I made one of those dinners that just blew us away.  Recently I'd been craving tuna melts, but I didn't really feel like spending a few dollars on a small pack of English muffins at the store so I decided to make my own for the first time.  These homemade English muffin tuna melts tasted like something you'd get at a gourmet sandwich shop.  Every bite was perfect and delicious, and way better with the homemade muffins.

I used the English muffin recipe here:

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/English-Muffins/Detail.aspx?soid=recs_recipe_seed

I made the following changes:  I used coconut oil instead of shortening, as we've been baking with coconut oil more for health reasons.  I also used almond milk instead of regular milk.  I followed some reviewers' suggestion to bake them at 375 for 7 minutes on each side.

To make the tuna melts, split the English muffins on half and place on the cookie sheet.  For the tuna, I mixed 1 can tuna (drained), 1 chopped hard boiled egg, 2 Tbs. mayo, 1 tsp. mustard, 2 tsp. pickle relish, and salt, pepper, garlic powder & dried minced onion to taste.  Spoon the tuna mixture onto the English muffin.  Top with chopped avocado, sliced tomato and a slice of cheddar cheese.  Bake at 375 for 10 minutes.


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this fall

Posted by: WoodElves / Category:

Here I am!  Having time to update the SAME EVENING that I actually have a shred of energy left!  Wow!  It seems like whenever I have time to sit down and do something (which actually happens almost every day), all I want to do is sleep with that time.  I make it a point to do my chores while the boys are awake so that I can rest guilt-free while they rest.  In fact, today I was washing the dishes with Mac (love my double sink, he washes dishes with me almost every day because I can put him at the second sink with whatever plastic dishes I just washed and he can pour and splash to his heart's content) and Seth on my back because he didn't want to miss out on any of the fun.  It was the first time I'd tied Seth on my back though, so he didn't last the whole time because he got tired of it.

So am I the only person who can't find a single thing to pin on Pinterest during spring and summer, but then when fall hits, all of a sudden my Pinterest boards light up!  And nothing will make a full girl feel hungry quicker than Pinterest.  I have a few projects on my radar that I have pinned as I look ahead to the holidays, but it just isn't the same this year.  Most years when fall hits, I get into project mode and start canning apple butter and crocheting baby hats and stuff.  This year, I look at Pinterest and think "oh that's cute, it would be nice if someone made it for my kids."  I have like no motivation to do any projects.  I'm sure it has nothing to do with having a 22 month and 4 month old.  *See above sentence about resting while they rest.  I have done one project though, I had to come up with a stocking for Seth because I don't have any fabric left of the skirt I made the rest of us stockings from two years ago.  I'm pretty happy with the top I found at Goodwill to make Seth's stocking out of - it was half price that week and I think this stocking will go really well with the three I already had.


Other than that, I've been busy keeping the children alive, shopping, winning Swagbucks (I made goal each day in October, yay), and scrubbing liquid foundation out of the futon in Mac's room.  He got into my makeup one day and I didn't realize it until he had foundation and mascara all over himself, the futon, the carpet, and a little on the chair.  I mean handprints of foundation on the futon.  It was such a large area that got affected and I don't really like scrubbing things.  So far I've tried plain water, makeup remover, Tide, and club soda on it and I also tried using my dirt devil spot shot thingy on it but I got it at a garage sale and it doesn't have the user manual and I'm not really sure how it works so I need to look up the manual online.

Seth is pretty laid back but I'm trying to make the most of his babyhood before he grows up too fast.  I can't believe he's 4 months already. :(  He plays in the Jumparoo now (which we didn't even get until Mac was like 9 months old)  and has gotten the hang of jumping now.  He still eats every 2 hours (sigh) and is awake once or twice in the night.  But since he's only in the 15th percentile for his weight, I have a hard time making him wait longer to eat even though he is so old to be eating so often.  He really loves Mac, despite all that Mac puts him through, and loves Mac's attention.



David has some changes at his job that has him commuting 15 minutes further each day than he was before.  This was pretty discouraging to us because he already commutes so far.  We're super thankful for consistent work, though.  Praise God he's worked there for a whole year already!

Mac's picking up more and more words.  He's at the stage now where he says "uh oh" about everything that isn't right, even if he did it on purpose.  Sometimes he deliberately tries to do something and then when he accomplishes it, he says "uh oh." haha!  His most recent word is "snack", sometimes it sounds like "rock" and sometimes like "shack" which is funny because those two don't sound like each other.  He likes to throw rocks outside and then clap for himself and say "yay" when he does.
ok I'm gonna scoot because hubby's home now.  There's a peek into what's been going on.  by the way, is it just me or does it seem like everyone has started spelling "peek" like "peak"?  so annoying!


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Purex UltraPacks with Oxi Detergent Giveaway Winners!

Posted by: WoodElves / Category:

Thank you to all who entered the Purex UltraPacks plus Oxi Detergent giveaway!  The winners are:

Entry #5Phillips F.
Entry #2Ashley H.
Entry #15Ada G.

Congratulations!  You have 48 hours to claim your prizes or new winners will be chosen.


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Purex UltraPacks plus Oxi Detergent Giveaway!

Posted by: WoodElves / Category:

Have you tried laundry detergent gel-pacs yet?  I've been using the dishwasher ones, but have not tried the laundry variations yet - until Purex sent me a package of the new Purex UltraPacks with Oxi liquid laundry detergent gel-pacs to try.  They are super easy and convenient to use.  Purex makes it easy to fight stains (the concentrated DirtLift Action formula has 2x the cleaning power), while maintaining a simple laundry routine. 

 Honestly, I was a little unsure of how clean these would get my laundry.  After all, I use half a cupful of detergent in every load, and it didn't look like there was very much detergent in these little pacs.  However, they claim to contain a full load's worth of concentrated liquid detergent and they dissolve quickly in your wash.
I used these just like I use my regular Purex detergent, and I was pleased with how clean my laundry came out.  It was an abnormally LARGE load, too (I kept thinking I could fit one more thing in...!)  Still, some of the baby's clothes had poop leaks on them, and they came out clean, without any extra stain remover used.  I'm not sure that I would buy these over regular detergent though, because they seem expensive - only 18 pacs in one package.

But let me know what you think! I have THREE coupons for a FREE pack of new Purex UltraPacks plus Oxi detergent to give away!  I will contact the winners via email after the giveaway is ended and they will have 48 hours to claim their prize or a new winner will be chosen.


a Rafflecopter giveaway


**Purex sent me a sample of Purex UltraPacks plus Oxi to try in exchange for a review.  However, no other compensation was received and all opinions expressed here are my own.


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Mom Thoughts

Posted by: WoodElves / Category:

It's been a great summer for us, full of fun people and activities and another wonderful birth!  For the first time in awhile, I'm NOT ready for all things pumpkin by the first of September... I could use a couple more trips to the pool and beach, and I would have loved to have gone blueberry picking!  Maybe I'll be in the mood for fall by the time it actually comes.  But it's so much nicer ending the summer with Seth on the outside.  He's such a sweet boy and gives the best coos and smiles.  I think he's an easier baby than Mac was, even though both of my skinny little boys wanted to eat every 2 hours on. the. dot.  Seth "plays" in his jungle for long periods of time, whereas I don't remember Mac ever liking to be by himself. 
  It's also been fun watching Mac learning more things and growing in his understanding of what we say.  My favorite one from this week was telling Mac to go kill mosquitos and having him go over to the front door and put on a reenactment of us chasing mosquitos and trying to kill them. It was HILARIOUS.  I don't think he has any idea what a mosquito is, just the funny things he sees Mom and Dad do when they use the word "mosquito".

Our days can be long and they can be tiring, but I try to not just live to the next nap.  I told myself before Seth came, that I was going to have two babies now and to just not expect to sleep as much.  If I tell myself I'm exhausted and deserve a nap, well, I'm just going to be crabby a lot when I don't get one.  I'm better off telling myself, honey, you're just going to be exhausted for the next 10 years and to make the most of it.  I have also noticed, and I say this with all sincerity, that God does give more strength and grace to moms.  Before I was a mom, I could not have done what I do with the same amount of sleep.  I also notice that David and I might do the same thing and then he needs a 2 hour nap- but I lie down for a few minutes, can't go to sleep, and then the baby wakes up, and yet I still have enough strength to last the day.  THIS IS A GOD THING, PEOPLE!  So when I look at moms with five little kids and I shake my sleepy head and wonder how they do it - now I know.  It's real.

I saw a great article someone shared from Christianity Today for moms, about how our love of brokenness is actually hurting us and it is here.  The article explains itself, but it is addressing recent trends among Christian writers and bloggers of admitting to everyday failures and showing how we are all imperfect.  I actually really like this trend because I think it is good for us to be authentic and honest with ourselves and each other.  I think in our Facebook world it is easy for us to compare ourselves to each other and just see everyone else's neat little package that they show the world and only see the crazy inside of ours and think there's something wrong with us.  So, I love reading those articles where the writers remind us to give ourselves grace and that we aren't ruining our kids forever if we feed them Spaghetti O's.  But, as with everything, we have to be careful that we take it only to the limit that is biblical!  The article addresses the fact that some of these things may actually be SIN.  And we don't want to excuse that and laugh and think we're ok because everyone does it.  It's one thing to smile and say "we all have those days" when nothing goes right and the chores don't get done and thus encourage another mom... but I need my mom friends to NOT tell me that it's ok if the fact is that I was lazy, or if I was impatient and unkind to my children. 
 The other side of it, that I don't think the article really addressed, is that this trend also allows us to be more willing to settle for status quo.  If I know that every mom with two babies is an imperfect mom and doesn't get out of her jammies until 4pm and yelled at her kids once or twice and couldn't get them to eat any vegetables.... then why should I try very hard to be any better?  There is a temptation to just sigh with relief and say "everyone does it" and then not make any attempt to overcome that.  BUT- I want more for my kids, I don't want them to be normal.  I want my sons to grow up to be great men of God and Susanna Wesley's kids didn't grow up the way they did because their mom settled for the standard of everyone else.   She was an extraordinary woman who raised extraordinary children by the grace of God. 

It is my failures that drive me to Jesus a thousand times in a day, and if I think "I've got this", then I am not setting myself up to seeing Him work in my day.  I appreciate being able to be authentic and not have to pretend like I have it all together when I don't.  We're all imperfect, but we also all need encouragement to love our children more and serve our husbands better and seek the presence of Jesus oftener.  Like I said, I love this trend where we are able to be open about our failures - but let's be careful to not exalt our failures, let us just make sure that they keep us running back to Him, where we belong.  I'd love to hear your thoughts, about the trend I reference, about the article, or about my half-baked take on it...


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Last Few Days of Purex 31 Days of Fun!

Posted by: WoodElves / Category:




The Purex 31 Days of Fun sweepstakes is winding down, but don't forget there are still some great prizes up for grabs this week.  You can enter every hour, so head HERE to get your entries in!  Today's prize is a surround sound home movie system.


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Purex 31 Days of Fun continues!

Posted by: WoodElves / Category:


Don't forget that  the Purex 31 Days of Fun Sweepstakes is still going on every day through the end of August, and you can enter every hour.  Today's prize is $250 for a new sewing machine and your choice of fabric!  You can go HERE to enter!


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