Wednesday, March 31, 2010

random easter-ish musings

Ultimate Easter Candy:

-mini cadbury eggs
-reeses peanut butter cup eggs

I dare you to disagree with me.

I know I'm PMSing when I can't get enough chocolate in my body...

Good thing I am able to drag my butt to the gym even when I don't want to. I love it when that happens and then it feels really good to work out.

Tonight I was finally able to do my huge grocery trip. Scott actually surprise joined me at Maceys. I love it when that happens.

Then, he helped me put away all the food AND clean the kitchen.

Do I have the best hubby in the world? Yes.

I dare you to disagree.

Last thought....

Sometimes I really love it when something happens that provides me with an opportunity to show my dedication, trust and ability to serve. It feels really good to know people really trust me and know that when I say I'll take care of everything, it will really be taken care of.

And, it's amazing how much a simple "Thank You" phone call means after that opportunity begins.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Mama's Fajitas

So, here is my first formal recipe. I'm gonna call these "Mama's Fajitas" because she gave me the recipe and she is amazing at making them. So Mom, this one's for you!!

Mama's Fajitas

2 TBL Olive Oil
2 TBL lemon juice
1 teas. garlic powder
1 teaspoon seasoned salt (OR 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt, 1/4 teas. each of chili powder and cumin)
1/8 teaspoon hickory liquid smoke flavoring
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 pound of steak sliced into small strips

Mix all seasonings together in a bowl. Add sliced steak, stir, cover and let marinate for several hours. Around 5-8 hours or so.

Cook half of steak for 2 or 3 minutes...add in half of veggies. Cook another couple minutes till veggies are al dente. Pour out onto a plate or bowl. Add 2nd half of steak and repeat cooking process. Pour all meat and veggies back into pan and add 1/2 cup of salsa. Stir and heat.

Serve with warm tortillas, cheese, lettuce, salsa, tomatoes, avocados etc. or whatever you like.

Most delicious fajitas you will ever have. I recommend medium salsa, I like a little kick.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Chocolate, bitter style.

Today was quite possibly the best day of my entire teaching career.

We have been studying the 5 senses this past month and today was taste day. LaurAnn and I collaborated to buy food and do this activity on the same day.

First we started with potato chips. I didn't let the kids try it until I counted to 3 and we tasted together. Next was sour patch kids. Then pickles. Then gummy bears. Last, but not least, chocolate.

I asked all the kids who wanted to taste chocolate. I got an overwhelming "ME!!!" response. The kids were all too excited and were trying to get the biggest piece or more than one. I had them smell the chocolate, hold it, and look at it. Then I counted to 3.

Their faces were priceless.

At first, joy, excitement, anticipation.

1 second later....

gagging, sputtering, choking, BLECK!!!

And uproar.

They looked at me helplessly like they would be forced to choke the chocolate down. I graciously offered them to spit it out.

The sigh of relief and rush to the trash was awesome. They then proceeded to take drink after drink of water to clear their mouth of foul bitterness.

LaurAnn's class heard the uproar and rushed into my room. All heck broke loose. Of course, I egged it on by offering the plate of chocolate to anyone who would take.

"No!!!! We don't want anymore chocolate!" "No! It's sooo gross!" "No, don't make us eat more chocolate!!!!"

It was quite possibly the best day I've ever had. Only one thing made it better...

"I'm gonna have to be careful about what kind of chocolate I eat now. Maybe I better stick to white chocolate..."

Well said my beloved 6 year old, well said.

Who knew chocolate could be so disgusting? ;-)

p.s. I did give them each a gummy bear after all the excitement

Friday, March 26, 2010

I'm a midwest girl

I cannot describe to you my joy as I look at the window right now.

I'm a Midwest girl.

The sky is covered in dark, gray and blue clouds covering most of the mountains and the sun is shining on the other half. There is that feeling of stormy anticipation as the sun moves in and out of the clouds making it really dark, then lighter. It is gorgeous.

The clouds are beautiful.

Now if only the sky would break with lightning and thunder...

I can't wait to be back in the Midwest again. :-) 4 months.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

kindergarten quote

Quote of the day:

(A couple high school boys came into our room to read some short stories. One was about basketball and Kobe Bryant.)

High school boy: Do any of you know who Kobe Bryant is?
Kindergarten boy: What kind of animal is he?

Oh how I love 5 and 6 year olds :-)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Hungry for a....

Do I write in this too much??

I feel like I go in little spurts, but sometimes I just have things I really want to say.

Like now.

Thinking about all our friends in the ward who are about to have babies this week, looking at pictures of other little babies, playing with my little nephews, and having the family make speculations about who this "future baby Dodds" is on the family brackets, is all making me rather baby hungry.

I know some day we'll be pregnant. But sometimes I just wish it was now.

And then Karli and Krystal come over and tell me their prego horror stories....that makes me not so hungry anymore :-)

We're doing soccer this spring again. I'm really excited about it because I've been working out so hard and I feel like I can actually run around and not feel like passing out! I hope it's true...I'm tempted to leave weights a little early to get more soccer time in. Wahoo!

P.S. I just looked in the mirror and either my pants are just stretched out or my butt has decreased in size. :-( Oh, and my boobs? Yeah, they used to be small, now they're like mosquito bites. The only downsize of working out....

P.P.S. I want to start a recipe blog since I love cooking and doing new recipes. I'm thinking about either Karissa's Creations or Champagne Taste on a Beer Budget. With the 2nd one I'd include prices of ingredients to see how much you can save on food. Suggestions?

Monday, March 22, 2010

Spring Fever anyone?

Today I was reminded by a fellow teacher....9 weeks of school left.

9 Weeks???? What the crud!? When did that happen?

I am SO happy Spring Break is in 2 weeks. My kids need it to.

In the past 3 school days I've had kids kept in from recess every day. They cannot keep their hands to themselves! For some reason they think it's okay to hit boys in the head, sit on heads, and shove each other over. I'm not tolerating it anymore.

My mentor and principal both had great ideas...give them an incentive to work toward: extra recess time. Instead of taking it away alot, give them a way to earn extra time. I'm gonna try it. They need it. It's crazy.

Other than that I just cut off the bush on Scott's head. Yay! I don't always enjoy cutting his hair, but it looks sooo much better when it's short. And I know he appreciates it. :-)

P.S. Only 4 months until we move to St. Louis! Wahoo! It'll be a crazy, new exciting adventure. And it will be really nice to be totally on our own in our own place. Yay!

Saturday, March 20, 2010



What the freakin heck??

Northern Iowa? Really?

Pretty sure EVERY bracket in the country just crashed....

Friday, March 19, 2010

Life goes on, right?

Lessons I learned yesterday:

1. When a kid aggressively pushes 2 kids to the floor in the first 20 minutes of the morning, it's good to take him to the principal. If he misses recess, then throws a screaming fit and bangs the wall while screaming and walking down the hall back to the office, he will be (and did get) sent home.
2. When a different kid is punching a girl in line, it's time to have a serious talk about "hands to yourself. Always."
3. When a different kid tries to run away from you DURING an assembly, then loses recess, then cries DURING the assembly, you better follow through with consequences.
4. When all these things happen in one day, it's a crummy day.
5. Sometimes you can announce and remind a billion times about a math night after school, and only 3 of your 20 students will show up.
6. March Madness is called MADness for a reason.... Husbands mad (crazy) about basketball, wives mad at husbands.
7. When you fall asleep and continue having dreams of what your day was like, but worse, it could be called a living nightmare.
8. My eyes look so green after I've cried.

I am a good teacher, right?

Dreaming of a cruise is my happy place right now. And I need a good, midwest thunderstorm.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Kindergarten+"leprechauns"= ....crazy!

So St. Patrick's kindergarten. I should've known it was going to be crazy. Our day was totally normal until we came back from P.E. Luckily it was the last 30 minutes of the day. We walked in to a disaster! A leprechaun had visited our room, trashed it, and left some chocolate gold. The kids were so hyped! For the rest of the day it was "the leprechaun did this!" "the leprechaun took that!" "he stole my scissors!"

My favorite was one of my favorite kids. "EVERYONE, BE QUIET!!! We want him to come back and you're being too noisy!"


Especially because he is ALWAYS talking and moving. And he couldn't wait to tell me every single thing he thought about the leprechaun. I must admit, it was fun.

Later in the afternoon, the leprechaun visited again, tripped our trap but didn't get caught, left footprints and some cookies. The hype started again.

It's amazing how concerned 5 and 6 year olds can be about a simple leprechaun trap...

Anyway, I told them the cookies might be poison. They didn't believe me. So I asked for a brave person to try one. Everyone raised their hand. It was cute. They all got cookies. What a crazy fun day. I love teaching. It's fun. (and hard)

In other news, I love the feeling that running 4.5 mph is too slow now. :-) I ran 5.6 for 65 minutes at .5 incline, running 6 mph for the last few minutes. Burned 670 calories. Woot woot!

Becky....I bet I can keep up with you easier now!!

Carrie...I don't know who created that delicious enchilada recipe you made that one night, but now whenever I make it I call it "Carrie's Enchiladas." So yummy! Maybe I'll post the recipe here one day.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Oh geez

Oh wow. This week has been crazy. And it's only the 2nd day of the week. My kids were crazy today! Or maybe I was cranky? Or both? I'm not sure. Anyway, the morning was pretty good, but the afternoon was really loud. I did a reading group with 3 boys...ooh, not really the best idea.

Anyway. My diet is still going okay. I think I need to work harder. I get going really good the first 3 days, then I start tapering off and slacking off. I wish there was an easy way to make your body how you want it. I'm doing AWESOME at working out, but not great at eating.

When I'm tired, I eat.
Hungry, I eat.
Sad, I eat.
Happy, I eat.
Bored, I eat.

Not good.

But I am happy because I can run on the treadmill at 5.5 mph on a .5 incline for 60 minutes and be fine! Wahoo! That's a big accomplishment for me. It's not really pain free, but I can do it. Next goal is 1.0 incline at 6.0 mph.

I haven't really made anything delicious and healthy to blog about....but I love taco salad! And Activia Light Peach Yogurt. 70 calories of deliciousness.

P.S. I just found this calorie counting thing that could calculate how many calories you need eat to lose 1 pound a said I could eat like 2300 since I'm exercising 60 minutes every day (which I am!). Definitely made me feel good about my goal of 1200-1400!! I guess I don't have to feel THAT bad if I go over 1300 now...but I still wanna keep it closer to 12. Some days (like today) are just hard not to walk to the office and take a handful of yummy chocolate!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Exotic Vacay

So Scott and I decided that we need to take a fun, warm, exotic trip this summer before we succumb to med school and start a family. So we're trying to decide where to go and what to do.

Anybody got any suggestions or ideas?

So far we're thinking one of these:
-Drive to Cali, hang out on Laguna beach and explore the L.A. area (cheapest, not as exciting)
-Cruise to Mexico (including cabo, puerto vallerta, maztlan)
-Fly to Cancun for 5 nights

We're open to any ideas or suggestions from people who have been to cool places.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Day 3

Yesterday one of my kids got a bloody nose first thing in the morning. I do okay with blood, but it was bleeding alot! I seriously felt like I was going to throw up. But I didn't. I took him to the office.

Then after lunch my class came in all doing a ninja pose and saying "Hi-ya!" It was sooooo funny!

Too bad they were SO noisy and crazy all afternoon. Near the end of the day I seriously wondered if they were just crazy or if I was just having a really impatient day. I felt better after the other teacher said her class was crazy too.

My caloric intake yesterday was fantastic. I think I hit right around 12 or 1300 which is just about right. And I ate at Zupas! But guess what? I only had 2 bites of the bread and I peeled the chocolate off my strawberry and did not finish my salad or soup. In fact, I actually left the yummy cheesy pistashio part of my salad in the bowl because I knew it was loaded.

And I took pilates. Not as great as pump, but it's okay. I was going to a girls night. I'll take pump tomorrow after I run today. (pump is my weight lifting class)

p.s. Drinking LOTS of water helps you to not be so hungry, helps you lose weight, and makes you have to pee all the time ;-)

p.p.s. I discovered the best breakfast!! A 1/2 cup uncooked oatmeal (cook it, then add): 1/2 cup frozen berries, 2 teaspoons brown sugar, 1 teaspoon butter, 1/8 cup milk. It's only 230 calories and it's delicious! Not to mention it keeps you full for a while. :-)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Vision, Plan, Results

Last night I was contemplating my life and my goals. I came up with this (the VPR is from a trainer I met with once at the gym):

-125 pounds
-18% body fat
-toned, endurance
-by June 5, 2010 (12 weeks/84 days)

-M, W, F: 65 minutes of cardio, abs
-T, TH, S: 60 minutes weights class, 30 minutes cardio
-1200-1400 calories per day (record EVERYTHING)
-10000 steps (yes, I have a pedometer)
-daily vitamin
-64 oz. of water
-7 1/2 hours of sleep
-Limit fat, sugar, carbs (white flour stuff)
-5 veggies/fruits a day

Today was day one....

Starting weight: 142
Starting BF %: 26
I took 12,242 steps today (running 5 1/2 miles helps...)

Chinese and diet do NOT belong in the same sentence.

That won't be happening again. I had a few too many calories today, but other than that I did pretty good. I will probably be posting my progress here as much as possible.

On a side note, I've now had 2 people talk to me about cooking. My friend Gina actually inspired this next thought....

anyone want to come over and have cooking class with me?

I would LOVE to teach people how to cook. I like to keep things easy (don't got much time) but yummy. And I'm working on more healthy. If a couple people want to get together with me on a certain night of the week, we can have a little cooking class. Bring ingredients and we'll play in the kitchen. Maybe even Saturday afternoon? Anyway, I think it would be fun and I would love it. Let me know!

Tonight I made ammmmazing teriayki chicken with sugar snap peas. Delish. I can teach you how :-)

Last thought: you know how there are always "DIET SECRETS! How _____ lost 20 pounds! Secret to being thin!!!" in all those tabloids and mags? I figured out the actually have to work!! Work out and work hard to eat right. That's the secret. Now you know. Tell everyone please. The end.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

More about peppermint cake...WARNING, humor ahead

So after I labored intensely last night and arrived at school this morning, I told the teacher about the cake I made for her. She was keeling over laughing so I thought I would share here.

Lessons learned:
1. When the recipe says "boiled water" it really means boiled water. Even if it's just a 1/2 a cup. Cocoa powder does NOT melt unless it meets boiled water.
2. When the recipe says to place waxed paper inside a 9 inch spring form pan, it means you better put the paper in there! I have never used a spring form before and I found out the hard way, that without the paper, the cake WILL leak out some leakage point and "tsss" on the bottom of your oven.
3. When you poke the middle of a round cake with a knife to see if it's done, it will usually collapse. Bummer.
4. When the recipe says "marshmallow frosting" and you make it from scratch....NEWSFLASH!!! It will literally be marshmallow! And, just in case you were wondering, a glass bowl as a substitute for a double boiler works, but gets very hot (use hot pads!). And, also if you were wondering, you might want to make sure you have more than 5-7 minutes to beat egg whites and karo syrup. And just to be safe, it's a good idea to make sure your beaters actually work and stay inside the beating handle thing while beating. P.S. you will be trying to beat marshmallow creme/fluff. Ever tried it? NOT easy.
5. When the recipe says "stiff peaks" it means it. But....GOOD LUCK. If your beaters can make it, then awesome. If not, (like mine didn't) then you'll have to settle for runny, goey, sticky, pink marshmallow goo that will look like it is going to stick like frosting, but 5 minutes later it will be slowly running everywhere...not on the cake. If you refrigerate it, this slows the running process.

I think that's about all the things I learned while making this cake. Scott said it best when it was all over "Honey, can you please never make that cake again?"

Amen, baby. Amen.

p.s. it did taste good! And it set the whole kindergarten team into a fit of giggles as I was explaining my trials. They were pretty impressed. I am amazing.

peppermint cake? never again

I made a cake last night. A chocolate, vanilla, pepperminty cake with (literally) marshmallow cream "frosting."

Don't worry, it's for a teacher's birthday today.

I don't think I'll ever make the cake again. It was majorly labor intensive and too many steps. Hopefully it'll taste good!

I seriously need help with this diet thing. I'm having the hardest time! It's so hard for me to eat less calories and avoid sugar. I don't know what it is, but it seriously is the hardest thing I've done. Or not done considering I haven't been very good at it... Baby steps, right?

I love the color green. Thus, I love St. Patricks Day and leprechauns. So do my kindergarteners. Funny how something the teacher loves can make them love it too. I love teaching. It is the BEST JOB in the world!

And I can't believe Utah state people are trying to pass bills and all this crap to reduce public school funding. Do they not realize that school is WAY more important than just about anything else except family and church? It's how these little people learn to grow and function in this world. That's where they learn how to be a citizen and learn what they need to grow up and have a job that will provide for a family. Kids can't learn the things they need in an environment of 45 other kids with one teacher. Are they crazy? I seriously cannot believe it. One reason I'm so glad to be leaving Utah and going to work in Missouri! It just blows me away that state legislators think it's okay to have 50 kids to 1 teacher. Maybe they should try doing what we do...they would fail. Miserably.

Anyway, enough of my tangent. I've gotta get ready for my kids. Wahoo! (they seriously keep me sane...and insane.)

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Recipe-Mexican Hat Dance in your mouth

I also decided that as I create and/or make amazing meals, I will post the recipe on here so you can partake (in your own way) a piece of the deliciousness that occurs within the Dodds' household.

Dinner tonight went like this:

"hmmm, hawww, what to make?" for about an hour. Followed by holding the fridge and freezer doors open simultanuously for about 10 minutes.

Tator tots....

As my mind kept going I kept getting more creative with the quesadillas. This is what the finished product looked like (well, reads like....)

1 Chicken breast cut into bite size pieces
Olive oil
Garlic salt
Garlic powder
Chili powder
Generously season. Saute.
Add some sliced onions. About 1/4-1/2 a medium onion. Saute til softish

On tortilla layer:
cheese (colby jack is a fave)
chicken/onion mixture
salsa (medium picante sauce for us)
sour cream

Sprinkle a little more cheese to "glue" the lid and grill.

Mexican hat dance in your mouth. Try it.

We thought it would be good with tomatoes, avacadoes or guac, olives, red peppers, rice or beans maybe. Easy and yummy.

The tator tots weren't really part of the excitement, but seriously, who doesn't love tots?

Friday, March 5, 2010

the bag.

So let's just say my diet took a turn for the worst on Thursday. Here are some picture clues:

The cocoa bean. Remember, I've been craving this for a week? yeah...not what I was expecting. Maybe I need to try a different flavor?

We decided to forgo homemade soup and throw in a pizza...

I bought these from one of my students BEFORE the diet....and just barely got them. Seriously. Who can resist a Samoa? Only the most amazing cookie ever made. Maybe the box is gone??

We had a teacher development day for our district. After lunch they brought out the candy. Almond joys, laffy taffy, famous amos cookies...maybe I was feeling...naw, I don't think I was feeling or thinking.

Oh yeah, and on Thursday, since it was snowing (why is that an excuse?) I decided to NOT work out and hang out with Scott eatin pizza and samoas. Was it fun? Very. Was it worth it? Probably. Did I go to sleep feeling like crap? ABSOLUTELY. But I missed him and it was good.

Today I realized a tragic thing. My beloved teal purse that Scott purchased for me for my 21st birthday, that is a perfect teacher bag, that is the best color, that is my favorite bag, is broken! The strap is seriously hanging by a thread.

I let him know this by telling him I needed a new purse. Then I decided maybe we would make a Target run in the near future to check out my options and debate what I could do.

But what really happened?

He walked in from school as I was stepping out of the shower.

"Honey, I have a suprise for you...." (usually this means a hug or kiss or nothing too big)

Then he whipped out this freakin amazing, incredible, most awesome color, (my favorite color) green bag from behind his back! He definitely has the best taste in purses! (You can't see the full beauty of this beauty because the color isn't quite right on my camera. It's a very vibrant kelly green.)

A rather humorous, inappropriate (but appropriate for marrieds) conversation then took place. For a brief moment he mentioned that he should return it, then bring it back to me, then return it, then bring it back, pretty much every day for, ya know, good reasons.

Then we made spaghetti with meat sauce (I really like Ragu!) The end.

OK Go does it again

Check out this awesome video.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

My Decision

I decided last night that I am going to write in this more. I don't really think anybody reads it much, so it's gonna become a way for me to write about things that happen in my day as well as my progress on my Bikini Body Plan.

Yesterday at school my kids had a breakdown. Seriously these kids are 5 but some of them act like they're 14. Kinda funny. I had to give them a big talking to about keeping their hands to themselves and not ripping things out of other kids' hands. 15 minutes later guess what? One of my girls ripped another girl's schoolbox out of her hands. The result? 2 girls crying, crayons, pencils and glue all of the floor, and the rest of my class staring and wondering what I was gonna do.

I gave them another talking to.

During which, the girl who was in trouble sat there crying and glaring and kept saying "so and so, stop looking at me! don't look at me so and so." Truth me told, the kids were looking at me and I was looking at her. Drama.

In other news, I spent 65 minutes running on a treadmill yesterday while watching Wolverine and G.I. Joe. I burned about 600 calories. WAHOO! Which means after that workout, I really only put about 800 calories in my body for the day. Yes.

And I hate asparagus. It's bitter and stringy and gross. But last night? My favorite food ever. I cut off the thick ends, slathered it in olive oil, shook a bunch of garlic salt, powder, salt and pepper then sprinkled a hint of parmesean cheese. Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes at 400. HOLY FREAKIN AMAZING! It was the BEST asparagus I have ever had in my life! I will be buying it again :-)

p.s. I'm writing this during music. One of my boys keeps trying to read it. LOL. He's a cutie :-)