Thursday, April 12, 2012

Corn Free Chocolate Syrup

As many of you know at age 2 1/2 (December 31, 2008) Ryan was diagnosed with food allergies and we eliminated all wheat, egg, soy and dairy from his diet for three years.  In 2011 we had him retested which showed he no longer had sensitivities to wheat and dairy (what an accomplishment) BUT now had a severe allergy to corn.  Makes sense because corn was our substitute for all things wheat!

This was yet another life change trying to eliminate all corn from his diet.  I had a very happy boy when I came across this recipe for Corn Free Chocolate Syrup.  It is super easy to make.  Most households will always have these ingredients on hand.  We no longer buy chocolate syrup because this sauce is so delicious we ALL use it.

  • 1 c. granulated sugar
  • 1 c. dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 t. (a pinch) Kosher salt
  • 1 c. cocoa powder
  • 1 c. water
  • 1 T. vanilla extract
In a large saucepan, combine sugars, salt and cocoa and whisk to combine. Add water, and heat over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil, stirring constantly (to avoid boiling over). Boil several minutes, until the mixture thickens - and remember that it will thicken more as it cools. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla extract, and store in glass jars. Makes 2 - 8 oz. jars.

Where does time go?

We are at the tail end of a 14 day virus, strep, pneumonia and hospital stay.  Spring time started off so beautiful and warm.  We even had our water toys out a few weeks ago.  What happened?  My poor girls got knocked down with some terrible bug and it has taken 2 weeks to recover.  Allie had her first hospital stay for 3 days.  It was horrible splitting our family up for me to be at the hospital with her and Nick and the grandma's here holding down the house with 2 other sick kids.  Not fun times. 

My goal is to be better about posting to our blog.  I have so much to share about our family as well as my love for Pinterest projects and recipes.  So keep watching for more frequent posts.

Here's an update on our family...

Nick just celebrated his 4th anniversary at Roche Diagnostics.  He accepted a position change about 4 months ago and continues to love working with this organization.

Ryan will be 6 at the end of May.  He has become quite a young man this past year.  He helps significantly with his sisters.  He will graduate from PreK and start full day Kindergarten at a brand new school in the fall. 

Allie is a loving little girl who still prefers her Papaw Mike over every other family member, including mommy.  She is being treated for asthma and sees her pulmonologist about once a quarter.  She loves her "lello blanky" although it's really pink!  She loves Minnie and Mickey Mouse and anything kitty!

Norah continues to be the leader of the pack.  She thinks she is Mommy #2 but we are trying to help her understand her place.  She talks and acts like she is 4 yrs old which most of time keeps us amazed and in stitches.  Norah finally gave up her pacifier about a month ago.  It took a lot of work but we did it as a team.  This earned her a Ladybug Happy Napper (or as she says "Happy Nappah").  Norah is my daily coffee buddy as my early riser.  I wake up to her being my daily alarm yelling, "MOM!  Come get me!"

Olivia remains Ryan's best buddy in the house.  She is still working with First Steps getting Speech and Occupational therapy once a week as well as Physical therapy twice a month.  Her speech has made significant progress in the past few months.  It's exciting to watch her grow.  Olivia has been sleeping in "bubby's room" for a few weeks since the illnesses hit our house.  That is going to be rough habit to break for her.  It's unbelievable that this little girls will be turning 3 in just four more months.

I continue to try to juggle motherhood, our home, working for Aflac part time as well as some freelance writing.  As like many others, I have fallen in love with Pinterest.  I hope to start sharing more of my projects and recipes.  I have to be better about keeping my blog up to date.

Well, as I am writing this three little girls have found their way to the half bath and I hear water running...gotta go!

Friday, September 9, 2011

My favorite pictures and memories of Summer 2011

This was a fantastic summer for The Vetor Family.  Here are some awesome pictures of memorable days from May through August 2011.  
Mother's Day at Hanfield with my girls!

Our very own superhero turned 5!
Popsicles and more popsicles...I would like to know how many Mighty Mini's we went  through this summer!

Lots and lots of swinging this summer...

Mom's first Indy 500
Allie, Becca (cousin), Olivia, Ryan and Norah

Special luncheon at the Governor's Mansion
My Patriotic them!

Taking the girls to visit Great Grandma Jean for the 1st time!
She gave us LOTS of smiles which was such a treat.

Livi's "Mean Face" ~ shows how fun her personality really is!

Allie (and all of us) LOVING Brooke & Josh's grilled pizzas!
Need I say more?

Our 1st Family Vacation
St. Augustine, FL

The Fort in St. Augustine

Daddy & his girls

Our beauties

Our 2 lbs miracles turn 2!
Our amazingly fun guy

Girls enjoying every moment of their ice cream at
Roche Family Night at the Indianapolis Zoo!
AND most importantly...LOTS and LOTS of fun with our FRIENDS!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Great breakfast recipes

I have two new recipes for breakfast that I love to make for my family. One is Crock pot Oatmeal that you cook overnight! It was a huge hit with the girls and Nick this morning. Very yummy on a cold morning (but hopefully our mornings won't continue to be cold.)

Recipe: In a crock pot mix 1 cup steel cut oats, 3 1/2 cups water, 1 cup milk, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 2 TBSP cinnamon, 1 TBSP butter, 1 diced apple, 1 handful raisins. Cover and cook on low 8 hrs.

Second...have you ever checked out The Pioneer Woman blog? OMG! You have too! She provides so many delicious recipes. Here is one that I made for Easter Sunday and that I'm going to have the hubby make for Mother's Day morning.

Sleepin' in Omelette (courtesy of
6 whole Onion Rolls (I buy Aunt Millie's onion buns and use 5)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
8 oz of cream cheese = 1 brick
1 1/2 sticks of butter (nope, you didn't read that wrong)
10 whole eggs
2 cups of milk
1 tsp chopped chive
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp salt
dash of pepper

Grease 9 X 13 casserole dish. Tear onion rolls into chucks and layer them on the bottom of the baking dish. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese. Then tear cream cheese into small pieces and place ALL OVER THE TOP! Slice stick butter into pats and place over the top. Mix remaining ingredients and pour over the top of the dish. Cover and refrigerate overnight. The next morning, bake at 325*, covered, for 45 mins. Then remove foil and continue baking at 350* for another 10-15 minutes. As The Pioneer Woman says, "Eat. Faint. Repeat."


Sunday, March 20, 2011

Chicken Tortellini Soup

Chicken Tortellini Soup
(Simple to make this gluten free!)

Weight Watcher Points
4 PointsPlus (without tortellini) or 10 PointsPlus (with tortellini)

1 rotisserie chicken 1 TBSP minced garlic
64 oz chicken broth 1 TBSP parsley or Italian seasoning blend
2 cups chopped carrots 64 oz water
1 cup chopped celery 1 TBSP chicken bouillon flavoring (optional)
1 cup chopped onion 19 oz bag frozen cheese tortellini
2 bay leaves (optional)
1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil

Chop carrots, celery and onion and toss in large soup pot. Add olive oil, garlic and seasoning over veggies and cook on medium-high until tender. While veggies are cooking, shred all meat off of one rotisserie chicken (save time by picking one up in your grocery deli!). Add 64 oz. of canned chicken broth to veggies once they are tender. Fill can with water and add water to soup pot. Sprinkle optional bouillon and bay leaves and stir well. Add 2-3 cups of shredded chicken. Cook on low until all flavors are well blended. Taste and season with salt & pepper. (See below for gluten free option at this point.) 30-45 mins. before serving, add frozen tortellini and increase heat to medium. Stir often making sure tortellini is not over cooking. Once tortellini is tender you are ready to serve and enjoy!!!

Gluten free: I have to make a GF serving for Ryan so I took some of the soup and added it to a separate saucepan. I turned it on medium and added 2 handfuls of uncooked Trade Joe's Rice Sticks. (Any rice pasta would work!) I let it cook for 30 minutes and it was ready to serve. He had his very own homemade Chicken Noodle Soup!

Welcome Spring - March 20th

This evening we officially welcome Spring. Hip, hip, hooray! I have eagerly awaited its arrival! We have sustained too many months of being trapped in the house and multiple illnesses. Allie, Norah and Olivia had their 18 month well baby visit on Wednesday, March 16th. Norah weighed in over 22 lbs, Allie at 21 lbs and the peanut of the group is still Livi at just 20 lbs. They eat like hogs so I'm not sure where it is going?! Ryan weighed 22 lbs in November 2006. (Remember, he was born in May 2006!) The trips have had a hard winter. Although I am so proud their immune systems have kept them mainly healthy from the BIG bugs and scary viruses but they just couldn't steer clear of ear infections. Starting January 3rd ALL were diagnosed with ear infections. (What a way to start the year.) By Friday of this week, March 18th, all 3 have been prescribed their 4th antibiotic for 2011. SO, per Dr. Julie and mom's decision, the E.N.T. is getting called first thing tomorrow morning and we are scheduling tubes for all three. They just can't shake these ear infections and they are miserable. Enough is enough with pumping them full of antibiotics!

Norah has amazed us with her sassiness and board vocabulary. Like "daddy, mama, bubby, please, bu bu ees (blueberries), El-la, Bec-ca (both are cousins names), yes" and the ever famous word at this stage..."NO!" Allie babbles a whole lot but knows many animal noises including her new favorite, snake! What does a snake say? "ssssssssssssssssssssssss". She has an adorable raspy little voice. She repeats just about anything Norah says. Livi is SO trying. We have had a speech evaluation and are excited for her to start speech therapy later this week. I know with just a little help she's going to make great strides! So excited for her!

We've entered the stage of climbing, fighting and biting. All of them use whatever toy they can find in sight to climb up on the end tables, chairs and couch in the living room. URR! This really is driving me crazy. The fighting usually starts with someone taking the others toy or book. Books are not hard to come by in our house yet it never fails that if Allie has one book, that's the one Norah wants! Norah is our infamous biter! Just the other day she was disciplined 3 times within 10 minutes for biting Olivia. I haven't quite figured out what works with this child. Poor Olivia needs to start fighting back.

All in the The Vetor Family is doing fantastic. We are blessed with a houseful of craziness but we wouldn't have it any other way. I have to be honest that most days we anxiously await 7pm when the girls go to bed and we can sit down for the first time for the day. God created it that way. He knew parents needed rest and breaks in order to wake up and want to do it all over again.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

It's been a long time, long time...

Well, I don't know what I have been doing since July 4th that I haven't managed to post to our blog? I'll tell you what I have been doing for the past 4 weeks...keeping up a house full of sickies! It started with Nick (flu), then Ryan (flu), then Olivia (fever)...that went on for a full week. Just when Livi's fever subsided...Norah and Allie needed extra attention.
So today at their 15 month "WELL BABY" appointment for 3 not so well babies...we found out all three have Roseola! Nice. So now we just have to let this virus run its course. Of course all in time for Nick to have his ACL reconstruction on Dec. 16th. (Pray for me!)
So I'll briefly catch you up from important events from July through October.
Picture of the girls on their 1st birthday. We went to Forest Park.

Four reasons why we need a new washer and dryer!

Ryan's first day of Preschool at Emmanuel United Methodist Church!
A lazy Saturday morning...just the Vetor girls...watching Barney! (Not sure why Norah busted open her jammies!)

Our own pumpkin patch...