What's Up Wednesday

What I'm excited for: 
Convention next weekend. Rich is in the running to be 3rd vice president of our organization (so he would be president in 4 or 5 years - I don't know how long) and we'll find out Friday afternoon if he wins

What I'm wearing: 
Lots of fluffy big cozy socks.

What I'm Watching
The Bachelor!!!!!!!! I'm in a fantasy football esque league with a bunch of ladies.  And obviously that Netflix series everyone's talking about. 

What I'm Reading
Still the same book as last week. Not enough free time to finish as quickly as I'd love. 

What I'm dreading
We'll be putting Biscuit (our dog) on anti-seizure medications because her epilepsy is now getting in the way of her living a fulfilling life. The seizures occur too often and are lasting much longer than they used to. The medication can cause liver failure which is why for the past 6 years we've avoided putting her on it and just "dealing" with the episodes. 

 What I'm making
Crafts for Liam's birthday party

What I'm listening to
This song is on repeat nonstop in our house!
You just can't help but dancing to the chorus.
You're gonna thank me later. Promise.

What we're eating
I made Cheesy Baked Eggplant Penne from my Skinny Taste cookbook and the entire family LOVED IT!  Wanting to eat clean and healthy is tough when you have to make a meal for the entire family that kids and husbands will actually ENJOY and eat as well. Making a separate meal just isn't always do-able and finding this cookbook changed our family's dinners. I love being able to sneak vegetables into my kids' meals without them knowing.

Don't have the book? Don't fret. Here's a slightly skewed version of the recipe I made Saturday night.

Cheesy Baked Penne with Eggplant
Slightly adapted from Gina Homolka's Skinnytaste Cookbook, page 254

8 oz. part-skim ricotta
8 oz. shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
1/2 c. grated parmesan cheese
1/4 c. fresh parsley, chopped
1 Tbs. olive oil
4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 eggplant, cut into 1-inch cubes (16 oz.)
2 tsp. kosher salt, divided
Freshly ground black pepper
1/8 tsp. crushed red pepper (use more or less depending on your taste)
28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
2 Tbs. fresh basil, chopped
12-16 oz. penne pasta (gluten-free corn or quinoa pasta work here)

Preheat the oven to 375.

Spray a 9x13 baking dish with non-stick spray.

In a medium bowl, mix together the ricotta, 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese, 6 tablespoons of the parmesan cheese, and the chopped parsley. Set aside.

Bring a large pot filled with water to a boil. Add 1 teaspoon of salt to the boiling water, then add the pasta. Stir the pasta so that they don't stick together. Boil the pasta according to package directions,  but remove and drain before the pasta gets to al dente (about 4 minutes before it gets to al dente but this will depend on the pasta that you're using). Drain. 

While you're waiting for the pasta to cook, prepare the sauce. In a large, deep skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Add the garlic an cook, stirring until golden, about 1 minute. Add the eggplant, 3/4 teaspoon of the salt, black pepper, and crushed red pepper. Cook until the eggplant is golden, about 4-5 minutes; then add the tomatoes, basil, the remaining salt, and more black pepper depending on your taste. Reduce the heat to low, and cook for about another 5 minutes until the eggplant is tender. 

To assemble the dish, place half the pasta into the dish. Top with 1/3 of the tomato sauce mixure, then spread the ricotta mixture evenly on top. Add the remaining pasta to the dish, then cover with the remaining tomato sauce, mozzarella, and parmesan.

Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil, then bake for an additional 6-7 minutes until the cheese is melted and the edges of the cheese are turning slightly brown.

Makes about 8 servings.

What I'm loving
The way Liam eats, Olivia's snuggles, our winter break.

What we've been up to
The new year means getting back to work. We have the winter off but we do our bookings in the new year/spring. Contacting event coordinators, getting the insurance in order, staffing up, etc. Of course I still don't have a nanny yet. Uggghhhhhh 

What I'm annoyed by
Liam's obsession with toilets. We now have to lock our bathroom on the main floor because he can and does, open the door and plays in the toilets. 

What I'm hoping for
Biscuit to be okay, Liam to stop playing in toilets, Rich to win 3rd Vice President, and I find a nanny. Oh, and some quiet reading time would be neat too. 


  1. What did you think of the Bachelor?? The girls are a bit nuts this season, which is going to make it all the more fun!!! The best was how bat sh** crazy Lace is already!!

    1. Oh my God I'm so excited for this season. Working on my recap now and yes, kind of obsessed with Lace haha


SMD Favorites