Saturday, March 19, 2011

Pasta E Fagioli

Wyatt and I spent a good portion of the day at my mom's, where she whipped up this fantastic chili-esque soup off the top of her head. So jealous...

Pasta E Fagioli

1/2 lb ground beef
Small pasta, such as ditalini, orzo, or shells
2 cans diced tomatoes with basil, garlic, and oregano
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 cup carrots, sliced thin
1 small onion, minced
1 can kidney beans, drained
1 can white navy beans, drained
1 cup water
2 cups beef broth
salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste
chili powder, optional

Boil water for pasta. In a large pot, add water and broth. Add celery and carrots and let them cook until soft. While they cook, brown the ground beef and start pasta. Add all other ingredients to large pot and heat thoroughly. Serve over pasta.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Spring Has Sprung!

Wyatt under the crab apple tree


Flowering almond

Tea olive tree. Tiny blossoms, but they smell amazing!

Crab apple branches


Little man in his Radio Flyer

Sunday, March 6, 2011

The Big Three: Inaugural Edition

I've noticed lots of other blogs that feature weekly lists: favorite music of the moment, neat DIY projects, cool websites, and the like. (The Saturday Seven over at Positively Splendid and Sweet Green Tangerine's Fill in the Blank Friday posts come to mind.) I thought it would be neat to do something similar, but I don't think I can come up with seven new things every week. Instead, I'm introducing The Big Three! This week I've featuring three awesome purchases I've made in the last couple of weeks. No buyer's remorse here.

#1: Bobble Water Bottles

 The Bobble is probably the coolest water bottle I've ever seen. Of course it has the green thing going for it, but even better... it has a filter! It's like having a portable Brita in your bag at all times! Kenny bought his from Target, and I actually used the deal that I mentioned here to buy mine.
We have the one liter sized Bobbles, but they're also available in the smaller 13 oz and 18.5 oz sizes. Replacement filters are also available.

#2: NUK Active Cups

We've finally found a sippy that Wyatt likes! Honestly, we probably should have started here anyway; we used NUK bottles, so why not NUK sippy cups? But, you live and learn. This is one of the few cups that I've found to be truly "leak proof," it's large enough to hold a good amount of liquid, and the parts are easy to clean. 

NUK has finally come out with replacement spouts for these as well, which means you don't have to buy an all-new cup every time you need a new spout. And, the parts are interchangeable with other NUK products.

Plus it has a pirate, and who doesn't like pirates?

#3: Eric Carle at Kohl's Stores

We're all familiar with The Very Hungry Caterpillar, and you probably know lots of other Eric Carle books as well. I grew up reading them, and this book was one of the first that I bought for Wyatt. Right now, Kohl's stores are featuring Eric Carle books and plushes for $5 each as part of their Kohl's Cares program. 100% of net profits from the books and plushes goes to support kids' health and education initiatives around the country.

The books featured are The Very Hungry Caterpillar, The Foolish Tortoise, The Mixed-Up Chameleon, and The Grouchy Ladybug.

So, there's this week's Big Three! What awesome stuff have you bought this week?

- Mother Nature Mom

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A few deals for your Tuesday!

It feels like it's been a year since I've blogged! Work and school and life in general gets in the way of that sometimes. But, I ran across a couple of good deals today that I thought I'd share:
Another thredUP deal is going on at Eversave, a site that's similar to Groupon. This deal is a one-year PRO membership + a free box of clothes with free shipping for $20. Not as good as the Totsy deal in my opinion, but if you're interested in trying thredUP, this might be a good choice for you.
Gaggle of Chicks, yet another Groupon clone, has $25 of goods for $10 from When you sign up for a new account with Gaggle of Chicks, you automatically get a $10 credit, which would make this deal free! LetsGoGreen has lots of eco-friendly stuff from household cleaners and paper products to water conservation kits, BPA-free bottles, kids' plates and utensils, and (my personal favorite) reusable shopping bags. Shipping is not included with this offer.

Once midterms are over, I should have a little more free time to update around here. It seems like the month of February just flew by!

- Mother Nature Mom