Warm Spinach Salad.

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I have to share this recipe! It was so good, absolutely delicious….and not that unhealthy! Also, simple and ready in less time than it looks like it should be!

Time: 10 minutes.

Ingredients: 

 2 slices of bacon

3 cloves of garlic

1 1/2 cups of mushrooms

3 cups of spianch

a splash or olive oil

pepper and salt to tast.

How to cook:

1. Cut the bacon into pieces and begin to cook it in a frying pan.

2. As the bacon cooks, cut the mushrooms into slices and slice the garlic up.

3. Once the bacon is crispy, add the mushrooms and garlic to the bacon and the bacon fat that has begun to form. Allow this to cook down until the garlic is soft enough for your personal preference. I like my garlic still a little hard, others I know like it almost soft.

4. Add in the spinach and a dash of salt/pepper and olive oil. Wilt to your liking

5. Serve of enjoy!!

The entire pan should be about 200-250 calories dependent upon how much olive oil you use. You could very easily eat the entire pan as a meal, but if you are choosing to have it as a side, this should serve 2-4 people. We finished the pan, however I ate at least half of it!

I hope you guys try this recipe! It was delicious! 

Be blessed,

Lauren Jane

ten minutes. It appears to take a lot more effort than wha tit actually isQ

Praising my husband.

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I was recently “accused” of me that I spend all my social media accounts presenting that my husband and I have a wonderful marriage. It was brought to my attention that it seemed as though I faked the perfection in our relationship.

Let me make one thing clear-I don’t believe Josh and I have the perfect relationship. I’m pretty sure it’s very far from being perfect-trust me I’m there for all the arguments! But my husband is a wonderful man, loving, caring and sweet. There’s a large list of things he does that make our relationship work better, but there’s four things that he does that make me love him a little more each day.

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1. He’s a wonderful father to my children.

When we started dating, I was under the impression my husband never wanted kids. By “under the impression” I mean “he said explicitly he never wanted to have children.” It was something that would make or break a relationship for me; anyone who knows me knows my entire life I’ve wanted kids.

It as crazy how quickly “I never want kids” went to “Let’s have babies together!”

What made it even better than him wanting kid was seeing how great he was at being a father. The first time he met my baby brother to the first time I saw him hold James, I knew how amazing of a daddy I married. From playing on the floor, tossing the kids around to watching him hug the princess as she’s having a bad day; I married a good daddy. And by being a good daddy, I know that no matter what happens between the two of us-whatever we be fighting over-my husband will always be a great father.

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2. He tells me(and shows) how much he appreciates me.

I know this isn’t a need for every person, but my love language is “Words of Affirmation.” (To find out your Love Language, check out the quiz on this site!) I need constant reassurance that I am good, I am worthy and I am loved. My husband is not high for “Words of Affirmation.” He has to fight to remember to tell me I’m beautiful daily.

He truly does fight to remember to do just that. He gives me flowers, surprises me with phone calls and little love letters. And most importantly, even when I feel he’s lacking in this area(because he does! It’s not something that comes to him naturally. His family even is one of little words.) He works to remember and always hears me out when I tell him I need more.

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(How pretty is my engagement ring?)

3. He just lets me talk.

I’ll be the first to admit it; I never shut up. Anyone who knows me knows I analyze things-then re-analyze….then re-analyze again. I do most of this analyzing outloud.

My poor husband gets the brunt of it.

He gets my ranting about foster care, he gets the late night “Do you think God wears pants” he is the only person who has to deal with angry me. I’m slow to anger but I am also slow to forgive(I’m working on it, I swear.) and therefore my husband has dealt with my angry ranting about the same thing for months. Ask him. He’s still hearing about last June.

But he never tells me to stop?!

Despite not allowing him a word in edgewise, he usually just lets me go. Obviously you should not belittle or aim all your anger at your significant other, and it’s something I try not to do, because it’s so easy to be angry with the one person I know would never hurt me, but he makes everything I say feel valuable and worth listening to-even when what I’m saying is completely useless to the conversation.

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4. He’s learned how to deal with my kind of crazy.

Josh married me knowing some days my mind attacked my thoughts. He watched me for a year before even being a prospect to me and therefore I was brutally honest. He knew about my panic attacks, my anxiety, all of it. He knew the symptoms before they had a real name and I could begin to work on them.

While my kind of crazy is not as prevalent any longer, there are still days people touching me feels like cotton balls on my skin(y’all, I hate cotton balls.) and there are still some instances where I have to call 30 times to make sure he’s at work safe.

He doesn’t love me “in spite” of all this-he loves even those parts of me. He’s looked into PTSD, he’s read articles about how to love a person through a panic attack. He has educated himself on the parts that I thought I would have to hide from anyone in hopes they would love me. I don’t think even he realizes how much I appreciate this

Needless to say, my husband does a lot of things right. I choose to praise him(and probably not often enough!)because he is an amazing husband and an amazing man!

Be blessed,

Lauren Jane

Date night 1/24

My husband and I have five children. We love those kids, more than anything else in the world, but we also love each other. We made a deal to attempt to do at least two date nights a month this year. This is something we obviously hope to continue, but for this year-we want to renew that spark.

I’ve spent days pinteresting and found some pretty awesome stay at home date nights(if you’re looking for an idea, this is a great one for after the kids are in bed!)-but at the end of the day, I am a sucker for a dinner out. No cooking? The chance of a drink? No kids? I’m in!

We got to do our first this weekend! My grandmother watched three of the kids while the older lady spent the night at my parents and Josh and I got to go out to dinner!

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We made it over to North Adams and decided to head down to The Hub. For those who aren’t familiar with the area, The Hub is a casual sit down place, with delicious drinks and a shocking Louisiana feel to it-the menu says that the chef lived down in the bayou for years and I would believe it! It’s an old favorite of mine and a newer one for my husband. This time round we tried two new things,

wings

We started off with Maple Sriracha wings. The Hub has wings to die for and this new recipe is nothing less than spectacular. If you like maple and you like Sriracha? You will love these. They weren’t that spicy, either.

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I had the Mass sMoca yesterday, a new to me meal. It had shredded chicken, gouda cheese, bacon and caramelized onions with a garlic mayo on it. I will be ordering this again. Just be forewarned, if you are not a spicy person, this one may not be your cup of tea. I loved it, but it definitely had a little edge to it!

However, if you hang out in North Adams, I would really urge you to go to The Hub for a date night! The place is a blast, the waitresses are amazing(we have had every one who works there, I swear!) and the food is top notch. Also-if you’re anything like me? The drinks are the best!

Sadly, our date night was cut early for a Patriots game(go Pats?) But I am excited to tell you all how the next 23 of our date nights go! Maybe I can even get Joshua to come on here and give a mans opinion on a few!

Be Blessed,

Lauren Jane

A day in the life!

I wrote this today hoping to capture a day on our way to church, with my grandparents, the whole shebang. Sadly, like every day with a handful of children, things did not go as I planned. But here is a day in the life!

4:07am- Wake up with one miserable baby! I don’t know what was going on with him this morning, but he would not go back top bed for me. I finally got him to let me roll over and get a little more sleep…thank you to my amazing husband!

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Thanks for that husband.

745am: Time to wake up! I can hear the littles moving around so I better get going or else our home will be destroyed! It was a long night though(Can you say nine month sleep regression? I could, but now I’m about to fall asleep every time I do.) so here I go for my first cup of coffee!

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8am: You know I can’t get anything done before I feed the monsters. They are all sick, however, which means there’s no need to rush-we have no church today. I get them each a fruit; cuties and an apple for the baby. I set him up in his seat and move on to get my own breakfast-I like to spoil myself for the morning meal and have a breakfast burrito almost every single morning!

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9am: The kids continue to eat, there’s usually a fight before ten am. This fine day it was because one hated Cuties…you know the same cuties she eats for snack nearly everyday? OH well, I say. You eat what you get I say. Then I cave and promise if they finish their cuties, they can have chocolate milk. That works.

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10ish: It’s time to clean! When you have five kids, everyday is cleaning day. There is no way to avoid it. Today, I worked on laundry and dishes and picking up the rest of the Christmas presents we had yet to take care of. I usually do a sink of dishes three or four times a day, no rest for the wicked. My older ones help out a LOT, the younger ones try but shockingly a nine month old is not that much help when it comes to housework, but with a sickness in the home, I had most of them napping or relaxing for all of today!

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11am: I start some delicious soup that I’m throwing together for dinner. It has the works: carrots, celery, hot sausage, sweet sausage, pasta, etc. I make it in the slow cooker, which by the way mamas(and daddies!) is a Godsend for busy parents.

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I mean, still about 11am, but doesn’t this look AMAZING?

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12am: begin to feed the childrens and as they eat, nurse the littlest bum to sleep! It’s wonderful to have a semblance of a schedule and while the past week has done most of ours in, we’ve come back out with our usual nap times and praise Jesus for that one.

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1ish: Oh, Lord, here’s some me time. As the baby sleeps and the other three play(read watch a movie because they all had temps and didn’t feel well today!) I enjoy taking some me time and relaxing with my favorite things: reading, blogging, coffee and some psych stuff! Oh and I guess a little gaming. I’m really the opposite of a “gamer” but I love me some Left 4 Dead!

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2ish-5ish: I run around a lot. The baby is usually awake in this interval, there are kids everywhere. Most the time, one or another has a snack, there’s a lot of tears because I tell someone NO and always someone who wants something they can’t have. Today it was mainly a baby boy who wanted to be held all the time, but we couldn’t manage that

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5ish: My amazing husband comes home! I get to have a kiss and hug and the children all get to run to him and receive love, all while pretending like I was some evil witch gate keeper that day. Without fail one of them complains about something I do wrong and another tells Josh how much they missed him. The woes of being a stay at home mom? Probably!

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6pm: Dinner begins and what is dinner time without one kid hating it? Tonights went over for the most part with a bang though-sweet and hot sausage soup is a winner guys! The only one who complained was me; next time I better drain out the grease. The husband however, loved it a lot! I may put the recipe up someday, it was so easy but so delicious.

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After dinner, we relax. Since it’s a Sunday, my husband put on a football game. I don’t even know who was playing: just kidding, I know Greenbay was because my friend Mindi kept posting about it! The kids headed up to bed between 8 and 9. This is by far my easiest time, I relax and get to watch television…and write this up! Josh will take a shower and I will follow up. Tonight we also looked at cheap “fixer upper” houses that we would never manage to buy and fix up but it’s one of those things we love to laugh about. We cuddle, or Josh cuddles the baby while I type this up. I sometimes manage to do the dishes, tonight I finished folding laundry and switched the load my 18 year old put in!

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I also never did get out of my pajamas today! Tomorrow we have a foster parent review meeting, so I looked up some info and then I have therapy and the oldest has a doctors appointment-so it will be another busy but beloved day.

This is pretty much what my every day looks like. Cleaning, cooking, a little bit of me time, and a whole lot of love. It’s so nice to have a life that has my hands full but my heart fuller. A full heart is the best thing a girl could ask for!

Til next time y’all.

Be blessed,

Lauren Jane