Saturday, December 17, 2011

I went there. And it was glorious.

Here is an early Christmas or Hanukkah gift for all you ladies born in the 80s.  

Jon isn't there... which makes me sad, as he was my favorite.

If you want to just listen to the song, You can do so here.  :)

You're welcome.  :)

Monday, December 5, 2011

And the pickles.....

I'm on my 2nd 80 oz jar/container of Kosher pickles.  I'm not proud, but they are just SO good!  Kid B loves them - those and clementines.  I seriously cannot get enough!

We had our ultrasound today.  Kid B looked great.  I picked R up early from school.  His teacher had to wake him up early so he could "go to the doctor's apartment to see Kid B on the TV."  His words.  So awesome.  :)  Then he kept commenting on the fact that I picked him up in the dark.  (Because the lights are off during nap time.)  I thought R would be really into seeing the baby, but he was more into his snack than anything.  What can I say?  Kid A loves to eat - just like his mom.  

Friday, December 2, 2011

The newest Ober - it's not what you think!

OK, so yes, we actually have 2 new Obers to talk about.  We are expecting our second child!  But, there isn't much news to report on that and this post isn't about Kid B.  We haven't had an ultrasound yet and I'm feeling normal, albeit a little puffier than normal.  So there will be more to report on that later I'm sure.

This post is about the newest addition (since Kid B was actually added last summer), Allen.  

If you know me well, you know that I like to name our cars.  

It started with IGY.  My first car.  Good ol' IGY.  A hand me down car from my mom when she broke her hip my Senior year of High School.  The car with the horn that sounded like death, or a really really bad frog.  I did love that car.  The Jetta and the A4 didn't get names....  

Then came Pilot Pete - which is still in the family.  A big work horse.  He can take whatever we give him.  Pull a trailer?  Sure!  Deal with R puke?  OF COURSE!  

Then there are the cars that EMX has had.  The J33P.  The car that EMX bought to "save money."  Even though his Accord was paid off and he would have a car payment with the Jeep.  I blame that purchase on the fact that I was in London that summer.  

Then came the Red Rocket.  The car that I refused to ride in because it was so obnoxiously loud.  

Then came Patina.  OH sweet Patina.  Our not-so-kid-friendly purchase in 2007 - just 2 days prior to finding out I was pregnant with R.  The Honda S2000.  Probably the 2nd car that I LOVED.  When we got Patina, we needed to get rid of Red Rocket and get another sensible family car.  

So EMX found Bernadette.  

When we decided to build our house, Patina had to go.  It was a very sad day in our household, but having a car payment on a car that just sits in the garage most of the time isn't smart - especially when you can use that money toward a better house.  Poor sweet Patina.  We had you for 1.5 years and only put 3,000 miles on you.  :(

When we first moved, EMX got into an "accident" with Bernadette (and that is in quotes, because there were no other cars involved, only a guard rail - and it was around that time that EMX started to get sick of sweet Bernadette).  So came Si - or the Civic Si.  Another family vehicle - but alas, that only lasted for a few months, when EMX was laid off from work and sold it to save money while he was looking for a new job.  (Funny - I actually typed car instead of job.... subconscious?  yes?  no?)  Then came the Pink Integra.    It used to be red at some point in its existence, but now most of it has faded into pink.  EMX and R's project car if you will.

So, with Kid B on the way, we had Pilot Pete and Pink Integra only.  Pilot Pete is an awesome family car.  Pink Integra - not so much.  So comes, Allen.  Our new (to us) Toyota Prius.  The only NON HONDA.  When EMX decided to buy Allen, I thought for sure that I saw a pink pig fly past our house.  

We really like Allen so far.  I NEVER thought I'd see the day that EMX preferred MPG over MPH.  :)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Further proof that kids change EVERYTHING...

Here he is. Mr anti outside Christmas lights. Putting up the lights because R was so excited to see the neighbor's decorations. :)

And to top it all off, R just looked out the window and said, "That's my dad! He is a nice guy!"

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Thursday, August 4, 2011


I've been in a pretty rotten mood this week.  For no reason in particular.  Have you ever had a bunch of really small, not really important in the big scheme of things, annoyances happen?  That is why I'm in a rotten mood.  Just a bunch of annoying, stupid little things that have added up all week and led me to be in a funk.

I will tell you one thing.  I REALLY dislike being in a bad mood.  One thing that I pride myself on is looking for the positive in everything.

So, that leads me to this.  In trying to turn my mood around, I figured it would be great to write something about GOOD and POSITIVE things that come to mind right now.

1.  This.  Seriously.  My kid is awesome.  And to be fair, I haven't taken him for ice cream in several weeks/months.  He has certain other people in his life who like to take him for ice cream - often.  But I'm super grateful that my little guy is going to have a close relationship with those people, who shall remain nameless of course.  :)

2.  The song posted above.  Something about the lyrics and the instrumentals really do put a smile on my face.  Too funny.  After I hear this song, I start to think about how Lily Allen is British and EMX and I are going to go to London/Dublin in the near future!  And then I start to think about that summer in 2002 when I was oh so homesick, and missing EMX so much, but traveling and seeing so much and ultimately having a fabulous summer.  And then coming home and getting engaged.  And then I start laughing thinking about how I asked EMX if there was anything stuck in my teeth right before he proposed.  I'm classy like that.  Then I start thinking about my littlest sister L who recently became engaged.  SO EXCITING!  So yeah - follow that thought process.

3.  I was having a really super irritating problem with my car, Pilot Pete.  Thankfully, EMX is great at diagnosing (with the help of Dr. Google) and FIXING problems.  Yea.  Happy dance.

4.  I think once R is actually sleeping and I've finished cleaning the rest of the bathrooms, I'm going to learn this dance.  That will definitely put a smile on my face.  :)

5. I made an omelette tonight for dinner inspired by my favorite at a local diner we frequent.  Sauteed onions, jalapeno peppers, tomato and cheddar cheese.  YUM!  I made it lighter by using 2 egg whites and 1 whole egg.  The diner version also has breakfast sausage in it but all I had was maple sausage and that didn't sound right.  I topped it with light sour cream and homemade salsa.  It was awesome - and tasted like I was at the diner.  I love brinner.  R isn't big on eggs which is why he had pumpkin waffles for dinner.  I make a big batch and freeze them for an easy go to meal on nights I'm making something that I know R will just not eat.

OK - starting to feel better now!  Off to clean the bathrooms and learn how to" party rock."

a sign your child eats way too much ice cream

Conversation tonight between R and myself.

M: Reed, you were a very good boy at dinner tonight.  You ate all of your waffles, broccoli and listened very nicely to mommy when she asked you to turn around in your seat.  Thank you!
R: Yeah.
M: How would you like to go and get some ice cream tonight?
R: OOOH yeah!
M: Where should we go?
R: I don't want to go to the rabbit store (Abbott's), I want to go to the Easter store. (Bruster's).
M: Oh, OK.  sigh.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Things that make you....

Go hmmmmm..... ok had to do it.  But really this post is about today and the things that made me smile....

1. Hearing "Tainted Love" on the radio.  Not only is it a fantastic song, but it also was a song that came on the radio in the OR while R was being born. EMX doesn't remember it that way, but I definitely remember making a comment about how much I loved that song.

2. Exercise! I haven't been able to work out (besides walking) in over a week and it felt awesome to do Turbo Kick, Hip-hop and Booty Bounce tonight.

3. Coming home to talk to R before bed. He asked if I exercised and I told him, "yes, I did turbo and hip-hop." To which he replied, "who is hip-hop?"  Love that kid.

4. Grape tomatoes and green beans from my garden in my salad.

5. Followed by an egg roll and a banana bran muffin. Eclectic dinners are awesome.  Also known as eating leftovers so you don't waste food.

6. Typing up this post on my phone because EMX is editing pictures on the big computer.

What made you smile today?

Monday, July 25, 2011

Anything Goes Frittata / Egg Cake

An easy way to get rid of leftovers and have a yummy and nutritious meal is to make a frittata.  A while back, I was all about the quiche, but I would either have to make a pie shell or have one on hand.  I've found the frittata to be an easier/quicker alternative and it's just as delicious - if not more so.

In our house, we call it egg cake so R will eat it.  It was the first egg dish/item that I could get him to eat.

My normal "recipe" is eggs (duh), milk or cream, sauteed red bell peppers and onions, bacon, breakfast sausage, broccoli and cheese, but you can use whatever you want! 

Start by cooking your sausage and bacon and breaking into small chunks. I really like to bake the bacon.  Weird I know, but it is so much cleaner and easier and makes the bacon perfectly crispy every time.

Saute your sliced/diced peppers and onions in butter or olive oil.

In the meantime, whisk together eggs (I like to use a few whole eggs and the rest egg whites) and your cream or milk and season with salt and pepper.  Sometimes I get wild and crazy and put a dash of garlic powder in, or parsley.  (I'm daring, I know.)

When your veggies are nice and cooked through, add the meat and broccoli and cheese.  Then add the eggs.

Try not to disturb the eggs now - let the bottom start to set.  After about 10 minutes or so, place your pan in a preheated oven to finish cooking.  (375*)

(If you don't have an already oven safe frying pan, you can wrap the handle in aluminum foil to make your pan oven safe.)

The eggs will puff up and finish cooking through in about 5-10 more minutes.

Remove from oven and let it sit for maybe 5 more minutes to let it all settle.  Then flip onto a serving plate.

The bottom (now the top) will be all golden brown and caramelly looking.

Serve wedges of egg cake with toast, or croissants, fresh fruit, mimosas, etc.  I actually use this meal for dinner pretty regularly because it's a nice way to get (sneak more) veggies into R-ster and EMX.

Anything Goes Frittata / Egg Cake

Printable Recipe


8 eggs (whole or combination of whole eggs and egg whites)
1/4 cup milk
Assorted veggies and meats
Assorted cheeses
Salt/pepper to taste
Seasoning of your choice (pinch) ie garlic powder, parsley, etc.

Saute vegetables and meats until cooked through in a frying pan.  Add cheese.  Whisk together eggs and milk and pour into frying pan.  Cook until bottom starts to set.  Finish cooking through in a 375* oven for about 5-10 minutes.

Remove from oven and let the frittata rest in the pan for 5 minutes.  Flip onto serving plate and cut into wedges for serving.

ups and downs

So again, here I am - having to explain my absence!  Whoops.  It's so cliche', but there has been A LOT going on that has kept me from posting.  Things that have happened in the last 3 months:

  • EMX was laid off from his job.
  • R turned 3!  He had a fabulouso Cars themed birthday party.
  • My littlest sister L got engaged!
  • My middle sister J closed on her new house!
  • We had to make a very difficult decision to put our dog Dakota down.  
  • EMX was offered 3 positions within a 2 day period.  Another very difficult decision.
  • EMX accepted a position locally - We don't have to move!
  • We went to NYC for a long weekend to visit some friends that we haven't seen in 3+ years and go to a concert and had a blast.
  • I lost some weight by tracking what I ate.  Not very fun when it comes to cooking, but that helps to further explain my absence.  It's not fun to cook and write about glorious food when you are really trying to learn and limit foods that are not great for your body!  BUT I'm finally back to wedding weight.... which is a good 10 lbs less than pre-pregnancy weight.  

We've had a lot of ups and downs.  Things are finally starting to settle down a bit.  I should be able to get back on track with cooking and posting.

A very big THANK YOU to all of our family and friends who offered us support and prayers during the past several months.  Here is to hoping the second half of 2011 is more UPs than downs!

I'll leave you with one of my favorite semi recent pictures of R.  This was on his 3rd birthday (not at his party), singing while wearing his birthday crown that the kind people at Toy R Us gave to him while shopping with his Mama (Grandma OO)

Seriously, this kid cracks me up.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Originally submitted at Perpetual Kid

They're cut out for action! These stealthy shinobi warriors are set to sneak into your kitchen and stage a cookie coup! Cut, bake, decorate and then watch them disappear! Add swords, nunchaku, and shuriken stars with icing and toothpicks for more ambiance


By Chelleybelly from Rochester, NY on 6/29/2011


5out of 5

I bought these cookie cutters as a gift for our Ninja friend. I wish I had purchased some for myself! Thanks for offering a great product!


Monday, April 4, 2011

Mondays come way too fast....

I should first give credit to my buddy Mikey for giving me an idea for this blog post.  (Thanks Mikey!)

We've been SUPER CRAZY busy the last few weeks.  To give you an idea of what we've been doing, I'll give you a little run down.

R has soccer Saturday mornings, which thankfully, EMX takes him to, so I can go to some of my favorite exercise classes of the week - Bootcamp and Piyo.  Love them both.  I actually had to skip one week because we want to get a head start on the painting project of that weekend.

EMX also plays soccer one weeknight.  I've been trying to make as many other exercise classes as possible on every other night, while also making (semi) healthy dinners for my two darling boys (EMX and R) and trying to maintain some sort of sanity/cleanliness/order in the house.  (Which I have to say, isn't going very well.  Who wants to come and clean my house?  Because yesterday I glanced quickly at the shelf in our living room and was completely grossed out and embarrassed by the amount of dust I found....  I should really do something about that....)

In March, we painted the mud room, the kitchen, the downstairs hallway, the master bedroom, R's bathroom and the upstairs hallway.  When we decided to go with a model WITHOUT an open foyer, we thought that we had saved ourselves from painting difficult to reach spots.  Guess again.  That spot over the stairs going to the 2nd floor?  YEAH - really difficult to paint.  Thankfully we had the help of my awesome in-laws.  (Thanks guys!)  EMX also reorganized the basement and I baked a gazillion (OK, fine, not a gazillion...) cookies, truffles, goodies in March.  We also attended 2 birthday parties, had a girls night painting pottery and I think EMX even had a night out with the soccer guys?  Oh and their soccer team WON last week!  (Raise the roof motion!  YAHOO!)

So yes, as a whole, March was very productive, but I've been slacking quite a bit when it comes to this!  I found myself this weekend having to stop and think about what day it was because we have managed to cram so much into every weekend, they are starting to blur together.

Moral of this post?  Anyone want to come and clean my house and/or paint the next room?  :)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Pan Seared Salmon with Creamy Vegetable Rice (and a Dance!)

One of the tastiest dinners that I make fairly frequently is also one of the easiest.  EMX LOVES salmon.  This meal is a combination of a couple of recipes that I have refined into my own take on things.  The nice thing about this meal is it doubles or triples very easily.  While you are making it, the dance is optional, but highly recommended.

Easy to follow directions are at the bottom of the post.



I usually buy individually frozen salmon from Wegmans, but you could certainly do this with fresh salmon.  I always check for bones just in case they were missed in packaging.

Sprinkle salt and pepper on each side of the salmon and place in a medium-high heated skillet/frying pan with a drizzle of oil.  Now, DON'T TOUCH IT!  Seriously.  Leave it until the first side is nice and lightly brown and slightly crispy.  You'll thank me for that when you dig in for your first bite.  In case you missed it... DON'T TOUCH IT!  Leave it alone.

Then when the first side is easily released from the pan, flip it and then.... wait for it.... DON'T TOUCH IT again.

It should look like this:

Trust me... you'll thank me for telling you not to touch it. 


Now, you can use whatever veggies you like for this.  It started as a creamy rice with tomato recipe that I found in one of those Kraft Foods magazines, but I've omitted things in the past and added different ingredients and this rice is always delicious!

Start by sauteing one diced onion in a tbsp or so of either oil or Italian dressing.  Add salt/pepper to taste.

Add in whatever other veggies you want at this time that need to be cooked through.  I'm adding zucchini and tomato tonight.  This time I'm also adding chopped frozen spinach but I'm going to wait until the end to add it since it just needs to be heated through. 

After the veggies are starting to soften, add the rice and then the chicken broth (or vegetable broth or even water) and simmer until the rice is cooked through and most of the liquid has dissolved.  Next, add the frozen (but defrosted by now) chopped spinach.

Now comes the creamy part - add the cream cheese and Parmesan cheese and stir through.

Plate and serve!


The Chemical Brothers - The Salmon Dance

R loves the Salmon dance!

Pan Seared Salmon with Creamy Vegetable Rice
Printable Version


Salmon (duh)
1.5 cups White or brown instant rice
1.5 cups Water or broth
2 tbsp cream cheese
2 tsp Italian dressing
Parmesan cheese to taste
diced onion, tomato and any other vegetable you like

Pan Sear Salmon in a frying pan with a drizzle of oil - a few minutes on each side until each side is crispy and light brown.

In a separate pan, saute onion and selected veggies in 2 tsp Italian dressing until tender.  Add rice and liquid and simmer until rice is cooked through.  Add Cream cheese and Parm cheese and serve!

You know you're gonna love it if you give it one chance!

Friday, March 18, 2011

It's Friday, I'm in Love... and other random thoughts

LOVE this song from The Cure.  Every Friday morning, I listen to the FMS on WBER and at 7ish they play this song.  Lately I've been missing it, which totally puts me out of sorts for the day.  :(

R has been potty training up a storm!  (Which explains my long absence... every free moment is spent in the bathroom with him lately.)

I'm going to be "trying" to organize my recipes soon.  I have a bigger binder and need to get them sorted into some kind of usable system again.

EMX and I painted R's bathroom this past weekend.  Pics to follow.  Preview of color.  I now have the painting bug and can't wait to start the next room(s).

Had a super busy week, baking, turbo kicking and hip hopping, more baking, tapping.... Last night we had plans to take a family walk since it was so nice out, but we ended up talking/playing with our neighbors instead.  It was nice to catch up and meet one of the new babies of the neighborhood. 

I've been tracking my caloric/fat/protein intake this week just to see what I'm taking in daily and I was pretty disturbed that my lunch of a very small bowl (1 cup) of cheerios, 1% milk, a banana and an apple was ~600 calories!  Seriously?  Not sure I like knowing that information.  I might just go back to not paying attention to that kind of stuff.  Ignorance is bliss I suppose.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Sunday Family Dinner - Oberdon style

If you are from Rochester, you will appreciate this post.  If not, maybe you will still appreciate it, but maybe not as much.  Garbage plates are a serious thing around here... They may not sound very appealing, but they are DELICIOUS!  (And completely unhealthy and greasy and did I mention, delicious?)

If you don't know what a garbage plate is, you can go here or here for an accurate description with pictures.  They are perfect after a night out on the town, or if you are in my family, for Sunday family dinner.

So that brings me to my dad's famous meat sauce recipe.  In Rochester, we actually call it hot sauce, but it's really not that spicy in my opinion and it is not really hot sauce like Frank's Red Hot.  It is just deliciously seasoned meaty sauce that you can put over your Plate or cheeseburger, or Hot Dog.

Complete recipe will be posted at the end with measurements, etc.

Start by chopping up the onions and sauteing them in the butter. 

Once the onions are translucent, add the ground beef and brown it.  Once this is done, drain the fat/liquid and add the seasonings, stir well and  then add water. 

Did you ever wonder what sugar, ground nutmeg, ground cloves, dry mustard, chili powder, cinnamon, cumin and paprika look like all mixed together?  Me too - here is what it looks like:

For fun, use a spoon that makes you smile and smiles back at you.  (Thanks Dad!)

Simmer uncovered for at least an hour to reduce the liquid amounts.

Then spoon over your food of choice and dig in.  Finish the gluttonous meal by making a brownie ice cream sundae and then vow to work out tomorrow.

Dad's Meat Hot Sauce

  • 2 lbs ground beef (I prefer 90/10)
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • salt/pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 2 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp dry mustard
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 qt water
Saute onion in butter until translucent.  Add beef and brown.  Drain.

Add seasonings and mix together well.  Add water and simmer to reduce, about 1 hour.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Not going to lie, I'm pretty excited about this!

This may clearly define how much of a nerd I am when it comes to recipes, but I don't care.  Google search now gives you the capability of narrowing your search results to RECIPES only!  Who-hoo!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Cookie Dough Truffles

This past Sunday, my sister L and I decided to make these Cookie Dough Truffles, but with a few variations.

One, I don't really like nuts in my cookies and neither does EMX so we left them out.

Two, I just dumped the remainder of a bag of mini chocolate chips instead of measuring out the 1/2 cup.  Who wants a limit on chocolate, really?

Three, I used dark chocolate chips for the coating and when I ran out of those, I switched to milk chocolate wafers that I had leftover in the pantry.

Four, instead of immediately forming the balls after mixing, I put the mixture in the fridge for about an hour and then formed into balls and put BACK into the fridge to firm up some more.  MUCH easier and less gooey this way.

The result?  TO DIE FOR!  If you LOVE chocolate cookie dough ice cream like I do, you will love these.  They have the same texture as cookie dough, so you can eat as much as you want and not feel bad or worry about the raw eggs!  I would even dare to say that you could leave these in the mixing bowl, not form into balls at all and just grab a spoonful at a time.  GASP!  But, who does that?  I mean, really.  ;)

Entering into Blogdom...


I have no idea if anyone will ever read this, or want to read what I have to write, but I figured it would be fun to start a blog where I can write about my life with my amazing husband, our adorable son, and our adventures as a family.

I suppose I should start by write about who I am...

Some randomness:  
  • I'm Michelle.  My closest friends and family members call me Chelle.  
  • I love cooking and baking.  I love to read mommy and food blogs and look for recipes.  I probably have 300 recipes saved in my email account.  I'm a bit of a recipe addict I guess.  
  • I've been married to my hubby, "EMX," since 2004 and we've been together since 1999.  We've had our dog D since 2005 and we welcomed our son, R, into our family in 2008.  (Does it sound like R comes second?  I just wanted to write in chronological order, lol.)  
  • I love all things London, Italy and the color brown.  I love to dance and sing, though I'm usually completely off-tune. 
  • I am the oldest of 3 and I have two wonderful sisters.  LOVE THEM!
  • As much as I love recipes and cooking, I will only even consider a recipe if it has an appropriate amount of ingredients or I know I have most of the ingredients listed.  Something about having to buy a cartload of ingredients for one dish really irks me.
So, I hope you like what you read!