Life Lately and Cheesy Jalapeño Tuna Noodle Casserole
Rule #336: “You usually have to wait for that which is worth waiting for.” – Craig Bruce
We’ve been on Operation: Baby Watch for a few weeks now, and it’s looking like we’re going to go allllll the way to the delivery day! We’ve got a c-section scheduled for 39 weeks on-the-dot, but I’ve been having lots of “pre-labor” symptoms. I’m pretty sure that’s just God’s magical way of making the Mama so uncomfortable at the end of pregnancy that she’ll do anything to have the baby. It’s a really good trick actually. Makes you prepared for any kind of labor that you’re facing!
38 weeks and counting! I didn’t make it this far with Corey (he was born at just past 37 weeks), so this is all new territory. Mad, mad, MAD props to the mamas who go past their due dates. Holy bananas I cannot even imagine!
I’ve been reassured by lots of seasoned parents that this is normal… but Corey’s been having such a tough time emotionally. Poor buddy is really taking in the change that’s coming (at least I think that’s what it is). He’s just not himself, and to say it’s been pushing Jon Boy and I’s patience level would be a gross understatement. He starts ‘school’ this week, so that’s another level of change thrown on. I’m hoping he will cling to all the fun stuff that’s going on and rally himself to enjoy it! Until then… at least he’s friggin’ adorable when he’s covered in bubbles…
My Mom Guilt over throwing all these changes all at once (new baby + new school year) on Corey have definitely resulted in spoils that normally don’t happen. Case-in-point would be this Saturday evening Astros’ watching session complete with banana pudding in his chair and a HUGE big boy bubble bath. You do whatchya got to, right?
Jon Boy has been my hero these past few weeks. He’s been working double-duty between his actual day job (he works from home) and helping with Corey. He’s taken a big weight off my shoulders, and I think I’m going to owe him something big. Like maybe a vacation or golf clubs or a Ferrari or something. I’ll take any ideas y’all have!
Our family has also stepped up in a HUGE way to keep Mr. Man occupied and happy. He got to spend the morning with his aunt and cousin last week, and he was one jolly little turkey.
Corey decided he wanted to “be like Coco, Mama!” He thinks the main character in the cute movie, Coco, is actually named Coco (his name is Miguel – he’s just a little off there). Jon Boy and I definitely have to stop ourselves from quoting Beavis and Butthead whenever he does it.
I was trying to be Super Mom (okay – maybe just “good enough” mom) before Baby G #2 comes. I wanted Corey’s teachers to have a small something that first day of school. I ran to Pinterest, printed these gift tags, and slapped them on some candles we had in our utility room. Wham, bam, presents done, ma’am! The ribbons fell apart about 2 seconds after I snapped the pictures, and I almost cried and threw them across the house. Instead, I just taped the stinkin’ tags to the tops of the candles and moved on with my grossly pregnant life.
We finally got Corey’s big boy furniture back from being refinished! The coloring is a little off, so we may go a shade darker. I love that his room is finally coming together after months of being in limbo. I’ll share more once we finally get it put together!
I had to share this. It’s something I just will never be able to recreate again. I was trying to launch Corey’s Teddy up to the second floor after he’d had his weekly ‘bath’. He got stuck like this, and I just couldn’t help but die laughing. Luckily Jon Boy got to see it, too, and Corey was spared the sight. I think he would’ve been scarred for life seeing his Teddy hanging by his nose.
If you don’t have Chrissy Teigen’s Cravings cookbook, you are sincerely missing out! It’s one of my top 5 favorite cookbooks of all time. I love it for her hilarious stories, gorgeous pictures, but mostly the absolutely delicious recipes. This one did not disappoint: Cheesy Jalapeño Tuna Noodle Casserole. I figured I should carb it up while I still can (without the guilt anyways).
I mean seriously… what could ever be wrong about pasta + creamy filling + cheese + crunchy potato chips on top?
If you don’t like tuna, just sub out some shredded rotisserie chicken or maybe even cooked, diced ham.
Cheesy Jalapeño Tuna Noodle Casserole
1 lb. twisty pasta (we like rotini)
3 (11-oz.) cans cream of mushroom soup
3 (5-oz.) cans tuna (solid white or chunk)
8 oz. extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 cup frozen peas
2 stalks celery, diced (about 1/4 cup)
1/4 cup jarred, diced jalapeños (or 1/4 cup fresh jalapeños), more or less to taste
2 tsp. Kosher salt + more for pasta water
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/2 bag jalapeño flavored kettle chips (or regular kettle chips if you don’t like the heat)
1 1/2 cups (6-oz. bag) cheddar cheese, shredded
Preheat oven to 350.
Spray a large casserole dish with cooking spray or coat with butter.
Bring a large pot of heavily-salted water to a boil. Cook pasta until just under al dente (about 6 1/2 minutes at a hard boil). Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, mix together the remaining casserole ingredients in a large bowl (cream of mushroom through pepper). Add in pasta and stir to combine.
Pour casserole mixture into prepared dish, crumble chips over top, then sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Bake, uncovered, for 50-55 minutes until casserole is bubbling and topping is golden brown. Remove from oven, cover with foil, and let rest for 20 minutes.
Adapted from Chrissy’s original recipe from Cravings