Easter Basket 2021

Last year I saw people doing Easter baskets for their kids, and I thought it was such a fun idea! Liam was only one, so too young to really appreciate something like that, but this year I decided that I want to put one together for him. I didn’t want to spend a ton of money, so I decided to check the dollar store, and ended up putting together the perfect basket for a 2-year-old!

This book is so good, and I found it on Amazon. It tells the entire story of Bible, but in a way that even Liam can understand. (He’s been telling me things from it all week!)

The dollar store has this very sweet line of Bible story books, and Liam loves them! They are a really good way to introduce the major Bible stories to children. So far we have bought David and Goliath, Jonah, Moses, baby Jesus, Daniel in the Lions den, Noah, And Joshua and the Wall.

I also found a book on eye doctor visits, and thought it would be a fun way to introduce that subject, since we go to the eye doctor so often for Victoria.

And I picked up some chalk and finger paint, and a couple of hot wheel cars since Liam is obsessed with cars right now.

It was really fun to put together and I’m excited to give it to Liam! I think this will be a really fun tradition to do with the kids every year, and it’s fun to be able to do it affordably!

MY HANDS ARE FULL

To the random strangers who remark on our children:

Did you have another one on purpose? Wow you have your hands full! Why did you have them so young? When are you having more? Why did you have them so close together?

I get remarks and questions like this everywhere I go… it both amuses and annoys me that random strangers think it’s acceptable to ask such personal and inappropriate questions. And while none of them will ever see this, it’s just some thing I’ve been thinking about for a while.

I love my life. I love having kids young. (Spoiler: That’s a decision we made.) We have the energy to chase toddlers, and will still be pretty young when they’re getting older and doing more things. I love the age gap. I think it’s perfect; they’ll be close enough in age that they’ll be going through the same life events at the same time and hopefully they’ll be able to be friends.

Sometimes it is overwhelming, when the toddler is potty training and the baby is hungry and everyone is crying, including me. But it is also the best thing I’ve ever experienced in my life, and I wouldn’t change it for the world. When your toddler randomly runs over and pulls your face to his to give you a kiss, or your newborn meets your eye as you lean over her crib to pick her up in the morning and gives you the biggest grin, it is the most rewarding and special experience.

So yes, my hands are full, but my heart is fuller, and I love this life!

Smoked Spatchcock Chicken

We are obsessed with spatchcocked chickens! They are so easy, take only about 2.5 hrs in the smoker, and taste amazing every time! And while they look and taste impressive, spatchcocking a chicken is incredibly easy!

I buy our whole chickens from Costco, they come in a 2-pack for about $10, and it’s the best price I’ve found! We buy a several at the beginning of the month, and I usually do at least a couple this way.

Spatchcocking is just cutting the backbone out, so that the chicken can lay flat on the grill, so it gets that good smoky flavor all over, and it cooks way faster than it would as a whole chicken. (I am 100% sure you could also do this in the oven and it would turn out great! We haven’t had an oven for over a year now, so I cook everything outside on our Traeger.)

I use a pair of kitchen scissors and just cut along both sides of the backbone. (you just want to go slowly, because you are cutting through some bone, so you don’t want them to jump around.)

Smoked Spatchcock chicken:

What you need:

Kitchen scissors, basting brush

Oil (I use olive)

Salt and pepper

BBQ sauce (my favorite right now is the Private selection Kansas BBQ sauce from Fred Meyer

Directions:

Preheat oven or grill to 350°

Begin by cutting the backbone out. Discard, along with the pieces inside the bird.

Oil the entire chicken, inside and out, and coat with salt and pepper.

Place on hot grill, laid flat, breast side up, and cook for an hour.

After and hour, it should be golden. Brush with some bbq sauce, (both sides) and then place back on grill. Turn heat down to 300°. Brush with more sauce after another 30 min.

Check internal temperature at 2.5 hrs total, but leave it on the heat until it reaches 180° internally.

Take it off the grill, let it rest for 10 minutes, and then serve!

I like to serve it with mashed potato’s, and steamed veggies! (Right now we are on a whole30, so I will just serve it with some steamed veggies, and a chopped salad.) Enjoy!