Saturday, January 31, 2009
Friday, January 30, 2009
That means even if a toot isn't audible, Chickie can tell when someone has tooted, and she wants to know who it was. She's even learned the fine art of blaming others for one's own gas infractions--one day recently she blamed Grammy and Sampa, and when they both denied it, it became clear she was probably the tooter. Up next will be blaming the dog, I'm sure.
Unfortunately, kids' fascination with toots develops many months before they learn to be ashamed of such socially unacceptable behavior. And that can put mommies in some awkward situations.
Last weekend, Sampa took Chickie and me for a donut date. On the way home we stopped at a grocery store. My dad started chatting with the pharmacy tech, who was a girl I'd gone to high school with but didn't know well. I stood there, listening.
Okay, I admit, I was doing more than listening. But I swear, my toot was totally silent and small enough it shouldn't have been smelled by anyone.
Anyone, that is, except someone whose nose just happens to be level with my derriere.
"Mommy," Chickie suddenly piped up, "did Zoodle tooted?"
With a smile I hoped was casual, I said, "No, honey, Zoodle isn't here."
The wheels in Chickie's little head quickly turned, and she asked the next logical question. "Did you tooted?"
I glanced at my dad and my old classmate, still in conversation, hoping neither of them was listening. Not wanting to lie to my little girl, and certainly not wanting to admit anything, I listened to my dad talk and ignored my daughter.
She was insistent. "Did you tooted, Mommy?"
Clearly she didn't want to drop the topic, and I still didn't now how to respond without drawing attention to myself. Thankfully the conversation at the pharmacy counter wrapped up, and I was able to say goodbye to my old classmate, pretty sure the one-sided, all-too-telling conversation hadn't been overheard and that the secret was still safe between me and Chickie. This time, anyway.
Thursday, January 29, 2009
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
- ...the dish is pretty.
- ...the peaches are pretty.
- ...loves peaches.
- ...can climb.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
I talked to Mamma and Papa this morning. I asked them both how she has put up with him this long. Mamma graciously said he's put up with her too! She also said that Papa learned really early on he wouldn't be able to change her even though there are a lot of things he'd probably want to change...hmm, that might be a good one for me to learn too.
They have 3 kids, 10 grandkids, and a slew of great-grandkids. (I've lost count.) The oldest great-grandchild is 20, so in the next few years they may be able to add great-great grandparents to their impressive list of titles.
Papa served in the Navy after World War II. He worked for the US Post Office until his retirement. He has incredible skills as a woodworker and I'm thrilled to have some of his pieces, such as Chickie's little rocking chair.
Mamma stayed at home with her kids, crafting gorgeous clothes for them without patterns, and working as an Avon Representative. (She's been doing that over 45 years now--yep, still going strong.)
On their wedding day they went to a drive-in (the food kind, not the movie kind), and while it's changed names, the place still exists. So they'll head out there today, sixty years later, to celebrate. A burger and fries never sounded so romantic.
Congratulations, Mamma and Papa!
Monday, January 26, 2009
I laugh when my child cries.
Before you call the Mommy Police, let me explain.
I really hate to hear my baby crying. Thankfully this time I'm blessed with a little guy who is pretty darn content and very easy to soothe. But when he's tired and we're driving somewhere, he often just loses it in the car. This is very frustrating to me, because I certainly can't hold him while I'm driving. I find myself getting so tense and stressed listening to this poor little boy crying his heart out in the seat behind me.
As he was wailing on the way to the library Friday, I thought, "He's crying like he's dying!" And then it hit me how silly that is. I'm not killing the poor kid; I'm just driving, and he's not happy about being stuck in his car seat. The ridiculous nature of the crying hit me, and I was able to see even a little humor in it.
That got me to thinking about all the silly things my kids will cry or otherwise protest about as they grow. Not getting the toy they want, having to go to bed, not being allowed to wear whatever inappropriate fashion is in style when Chickie hits middle school, having to turn off the TV and find something creative to do.
And when they grow up, will they be resentful of me for forcing them to ride in carseats, refusing toys, enforcing bedtime, helping with clothing choices, and turning off the TV? I doubt it. I mean, let's be realistic--I'm a normal, imperfect mom, and I'm sure I'll find plenty of genuine ways to make my kids resentful of me!
As I drove along, I found myself able to smile at all the silly things kids get upset about. And smiling about it was a lot more fun than stressing (and probably had a better effect on my driving.)
So...I do hate to hear my kiddos cry. But whether it's an infant who wants to be in Mommy's arms instead of the car seat, or a teenager who is learning that the world doesn't revolve around them, kids will cry about ridiculous things. That's part of growing up. And maybe learning to laugh at it is part of me growing up, too.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
I'd like to share with you what Chickie and I had for lunch today. This is something I make frequently. It's healthy, easy, cheap, lasts for several meals, and, best of all, my somewhat picky 2-year-old likes it pretty consistently. You can alter the "recipe" however you'd like; it's hard to mess it up!
Chickie's Rice and Beans
4 servings instant brown rice*
2 cans of beans (whatever variety you like except refried), one drained and one not
1 can of diced tomatoes (again, whatever variety you like, even Ro-Tel if you like spice), not drained
1-2 can(s) veggies of your choice, drained
Salsa, to taste
1. Cook the rice according to package directions.
2. Stir in the other ingredients.
3. Heat further (stovetop or microwave) if desired. (It's just the right "hot-ness" for Chickie if I stir in the canned ingredients as soon as the rice is fully cooked. I like to heat my own a little more.)
4. Season with salsa if desired.
*Instant brown rice is just as healthy as the slow-cook stuff; it's simply pre-cooked. The texture may not be quite as good, so if you are better at planning ahead than I am, go ahead and make the slow-cook variety. Either way, keep in mind that brown rice is very healthy and white rice is not nearly as good for you.
Isn't it pretty? Today I made it with black beans, garbanzo beans, and carrots.
I leave the salsa out and put it only in my serving so that it's not too spicy for Chickie. And while we're on the subject of salsa, here are my two current favorites:
1. Cookwell & Company Tomatillo Salsa. This is gourmet stuff. They had samples at the grocery store along with a buy one, get one free coupon. My jaw dropped when I saw the $6 price tag but I figured with the coupon it would be $3 a jar, which isn't bad. Of course, I've fallen head over heels for this awesome green salsa and will probably fork over the $6 when our two jars are gone...which shouldn't take long. This is a regional brand, so you may need to find a different type of tomatillo salsa. My sister says Trader Joe's makes a great one, and it's cheap.
2. Valentina Salsa Picante. We buy the big jars of this stuff because I eat so much of it. It's smooth (similar to Taco Bell's sauce) and oh-so-yummy. And it's dirt cheap, about $2 for this huge, 34 oz. (1 L) bottle. Looks like it's time to add it to the shopping list, huh?
Enjoy your rice and beans!
Saturday, January 24, 2009
Chickie is born.
We give her a binky (pacifier). I sing its praises because she likes to overeat and then projectile vomit (lovely, I know), and the binky helps satisfy her sucking needs without giving her an overly-full tummy.
Chickie, at 19 months old, says bye bye to her binkies and is rewarded with an Elmo DVD. I am immensely relieved as by this time I feel the binky has been running my life. From months of having to replace it in her mouth while sleeping (before she could put it in herself), to emergency "binky runs" to Target when we couldn't find any, to stretching my arm to twice its normal length trying to replace it in her mouth with her sitting behind me in the car, to having a permanent binky-shaped indentation in the pocket of my jeans, to just being sick of seeing a toddler's mouth constantly invisible behind a plastic device...I was sick of the things and SO glad to be rid of them.
Zoodle is born.
Zoodle is crying. The Engineer asks, "When do we give him a binky?" I reply that I'm not sure if I ever want to use one--"We'll see." (Mommy code for "Hopefully never.")
The Engineer suggests the binky when Zoodle is crying. I say I don't want to use it.
04.04.08, 04.08.08, etc.
Repeat of 04.03.08
I tell The Engineer I think it would be okay to use the binky while Zoodle is swaddled, since he can't get to his hands to suck on them. But that's IT, no other times. Zoodle easily starts sucking on the binky. In future weeks I occasionally realize The Engineer has "sneaked" Zoodle a binky when I've been out of the house, but I figure if the guy is being a good enough dad to watch his son, I need to let him bend the rules a bit.
Chickie is sick, and I give Zoodle the binky in the car, not willing to deal with a sick toddler and a crying baby.
Zoodle is sick, and I tell him since he doesn't feel well he can have the binky as much as he wants, all day long. I clip it to his shirt.
I give Zoodle the binky on our four hour car ride with Little Sis, and when it keeps the in-car crying to a minimum, I consider sending flowers to the genius who invented these things.
I type a blog with a content, binky-sucking baby on my lap. Then I sign the contract to sell my soul, once again, to the binky manufacturers. Sigh....
Friday, January 23, 2009
Here it is closed:
And here it is opened up, with a changing pad and pockets for diapers, wipes, etc.
Here's the thing. I just recently noticed there's a little label where you can write your child's name, address, etc. Forget for now the safety aspect of putting your child's address on something strangers might see. The part that weirds me out is the second line.
I have two in diapers, and I may feel like I'll be changing diapers forever...but if I ever have to write Chickie's or Zoodle's GRADE on a diaper bag, I might as well just check myself into a funny farm for good.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
The appetite of a nursing mom is a powerful force. It leads her to do strange and daring things. Things like letting her toddler eat a McDonald's ice cream cone in the car because Mama is so hungry she needs food NOW and she realizes she can't eat ice cream without buying some for the munchkin. Yeah, I know, I was risking total destruction of my vehicle, but it is ten years old, and besides, I like to live on the edge. This risky behavior is sort of fun; I think next week I'll take Chickie bungee jumping.
It was a risk that paid off. A lot of ice cream ended up on Chickie's face, but only one large drop fell on her car seat. I think she was happy with the situation, too....
I did learn something important. McDonald's puts these little paper sleeves on the bottom half of their ice cream cones. Well, I guess the sleeve should be removed before handing the ice cream cone to the child. When I did remove it upon our arrival home, it looked like this (the upper edge lining up perfectly with the bite marks in the cone):
So let me get this straight, sweet Chickie. You are perfectly okay with eating paper, sand, lip balm, and baby shampoo, but mashed potatoes and green beans are GROSS. I suppose in some alternate universe called "Toddlerlogic" that makes perfect sense.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Monday, January 19, 2009
The other day we needed salsa. Perfect opportunity for The Engineer to use the list for the first time.
"The Engineer," I began, "would you please add salsa to the grocery list?"
"Where is it?"
"It's the Curious George pad on the fridge." (Yes, I have a 2-year-old and I stole the magnetic Curious George pad I bought her.)
He graciously complied. It wasn't until the next day that I actually saw his list.
It gave me a smile and an appreciation for a husband with a sense of humor. (Though I guess not enough of an appreciation to actually fulfill his wishes, since, as you see, salsa is the only item I marked off on my shopping trip.)
For now, our upstairs game room will have to suffer without a 42" television, receiver, and surround speakers. Yes, we are indeed deprived of life's necessities.
(By the way, what exactly is a receiver?)
Sunday, January 18, 2009
- Yellow cake recipe (good, but turned out denser than it should have)
- Chocolate cream cheese frosting recipe (MMMM!)
- Buttercream icing recipe (MMMM again!)
- A simple WALL-E graphic I could base the cake on
I then realized WALL-E, who has lots of gray, wouldn't show up well on the brown frosting. So I made my buttercream icing and put a smooth rectangle on the cake. Again...it took forever.
I used a toothpick to draw the design.
I left with The Engineer, dropped the kids off with some friends, and my man and I ate greasy Mexican food for dinner to celebrate our anniversary. Then we went to Starbucks. When we got home and got the kids to bed, I got back to work.
Did I say that smoothing the icing took forever? I should have saved that superlative to describe the amount of time it took me to do the WALL-E design.
All in all, icing and decorating the cake took about five hours. But I loved how it turned out. And Chickie was enthusiastic.
It might be forever before I do another cake. And by "forever" I mean a couple of months.... Zoodle's birthday is at the end of March.
Friday, January 16, 2009
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:
Timestamp: 2009-01-14 03:09:00 UTC
Monday, January 12, 2009
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Flame has always been very brave for his surgeries, keeping a smile on his face before, during, and after.
When Chickie got up, she said he "got a Band-Aid!" I'm glad she likes the result of Flame's bearable surgery as much as I do.
Now, isn't that a cute sad face? Unfortunately, after just a few more minutes of crying, his face gets bright red and blotchy, which is distinctly un-cute. He inherited that unenviable trait from Yours Truly.
Zoodle has liked every food we've fed him so far, which is just plain awesome. He also still loves to participate in Mommy's post-partum diet plan (which consists of me eating a lot out of the fridge and him eating a lot out of me.)
At over nine months, Zoodle has now lived outside the womb for longer than he lived inside. And our family just wouldn't be complete without him.
Friday, January 9, 2009
Thursday, January 8, 2009
I hope you don't mind, but this "snow-woman" decided to take her new years vacation out by you (kinda hokey, but the thought of making a snowperson in a swimsuit cracked me up). Have I mentioned that I'm a stay-at-home mom to an 8-month old? :)
Anyway, I hope you have a great holiday.
Your art pen pal,
Adorable, Jen! I think the "snowperson in a swimsuit" is awesome.
I'm waiting on a couple more project photos.... You know who you are! Please contact me soon. Thanks.
Beautiful, Momza! What a great quote, and your calligraphy and drawing are both lovely.
Tia to C. Beth:
Tia, these were so cute! They looked great on our Christmas tree. I loved the hand-stitched look.
C. Beth to Faith:
Construction paper cutout collages
The second picture says, "If you think my hands are full...you should see my heart." Faith said on her blog, "I have known Beth for awhile, but I don't know if she remembers me saying this, or if she just thought it was fitting." I didn't know it was a favorite quote of hers--but what a nice coincidence!
Faith to Caitlin:
These little magnets are adorable--and Faith has a tutorial on her blog on how to make them--they look so easy, and I just may have to try making some!
Michelle to Angie:
Angie said, "The one I got was just gorgeous!" And you all know I'm a fan of Michelle too--Have you entered our giveaway yet?
Angie to Erin:
Erin said, "[Angie] told me that spring has already come to them down south, something I greatly look forward to up here in the frigid north woods! She instructed me to put a picture of the first sign of spring in it...that will unfortunately be a long way off! But it will remain on my inspiration wall on my studio until I can! (I have a whole wall of sheet metal that I am crazy about posting things with magnets!)" Such a cute frame, Angie!
Erin to Becki:
Modeled by the ever-gorgeous Becki (my identical twin!):
Erin explains, "They are called W.O.W. Pendants...which stands for Words of Wisdom. On the back is a random inspirational quote...sort of like a fortune cookie...but you never know what you are going to get!"
"W.O.W." seems to be appropriate! Becki gushed, "Oh, WOW!!!! She is way too nice! I want her to be my art pen pal all the time!!!! I absolutely love the necklace, and I'm quite sure I got the BEST art pen pal gift of anyone. Wow!"
Good thing Becki and I both have "B" names.... Think she'll let me borrow that gorgeous necklace?
Becki to The Archduchess:
Becki made a custom blog header for The Archduchess, and it's beautiful! Check it out at The Archduchess' blog.
The Archduchess to Bri:
This is such a cute video game-themed drawing, Archduchess!
Bri to Jen:
What a fun, personalized drawing, Bri! I think all of us moms need to be called "Super Mom" occasionally (if not DAILY!)
Scriptor Senex to EliandMe:
Scriptor Senex explains, "I am totally butterfly mad. See this blog post." EliandMe "loved" this drawing. Beautiful job, Scriptor Senex!
EliandMe to Scriptor Senex:
Scriptor Senex calls this a "wonderful piece." I agree! EliandMe, your use of language is beautiful and really fits for Scriptor Senex, who definitely has a writing addiction!
Thank you so much to all the participants! This was a blast, and I think we should do it again soon.
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Microwave Scalloped Potatoes
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
She was having fun playing with it as a mirror, and then suddenly a light went on behind her beautiful eyes, and she said, "This is my computer!" She began "typing" on the tray while she looked at the mirror "screen."
Monday, January 5, 2009
Since then, Michelle and I have "gotten to know" each other through our blogs, and she's agreed to do an art giveaway for readers of her blog and mine! Now, I know my past giveaways have been fun, but I think you'll agree that beautiful, original artwork is easily far more exciting than, say, free lip gloss.
Ready for the virtual unveiling? Here is the beautiful piece of art that Michelle made for this giveaway.
It is made with hand-painted papers collaged onto canvas paper. It will come matted, ready to be framed in a 5x7 frame. The title is Little Pink Bird.
Beautiful, isn't it? You want it, don't you? Well, here are the contest rules:
1. Leave a comment, any comment, on this post. Perhaps you'd like to say what the little bird in the art is thinking? (Entertaining the blog authors doesn't get you extra entries, but you can count it as your good deed of the day.) Or just say, "Yo, enter me." It's up to you.
2. For an extra entry, go to Michelle's blog by clicking here, and leave a comment on her contest post, too. (If she hasn't posted yet about this contest, just keep checking!)
3. For even more entries, tell everyone you know about this and encourage them to enter, and to mention your name in their entry. You'll get an extra entry every time someone enters and uses your name as a referral.
4. The contest will close at 8 p.m., Central Standard Time, Monday, January 12, 2009. An entry will be randomly chosen, and the winner will be announced on both blogs Tuesday, January 13. Be sure to come back here to see if you've won. If you don't contact Michelle or C. Beth by 8 p.m. CST, Thursday, January 14, another winner will be randomly chosen.
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