Saturday, June 30, 2007

Busy as bees

Today was a crazy hectic day for the P family. M had to get his haircut this morning, so that was first up. He likes to be at the barber shop when it opens at 8am. 8:05 means you're waiting at least a half an hour. He didn't have time to wait this morning. I needed him home to watch the baby so I could finish cooking for and get ready for a baby shower that I hosted this morning. There was a lot to get done by 11am, but we succeeded in getting everything and everyone ready and the girl down for a nap before the first guest arrived. Of course, getting M ready consisted of getting him and Otis out the door. They went and worked on M's daddy's house during the par-tay. The shower went well. It was a storytime shower...meaning everyone brought books. Angie (the prego) has a lot of family and a lot of friends, so she already has most everything she needs. This shower was mostly just for fun stuff. Like books. She got lots of good ones. I hope her baby likes reading. The shower also gave me a valid excuse for using a lot of old china and crystal and sterling. Not that I need an excuse.
It's a day ending in "y"? Okay, we'll eat off the Limoges tonight, dear

God, I love dishes. I get it from my aunt Melanie. She made me this way. Blame her.
After the shower, baby girl took part in her first parade. Our neighborhood has a 4th of July parade every year. All the kids decorate their bikes and wagons and follow a fire truck the half mile around the park. It's a big to-do for about 7 minutes. There are games and snacks in the park afterward, but S needed a nap, so we just did the parade part. And we even missed half of that. Oh well, she got some red, white (okay, silver), and blue star balloons. And we got pictures. It was great. Then...we went to M's dad's house to do some more work. It's amazing how big of a mess is made by putting down new carpet. Lots of vacuuming to do. Lots. And we have to paint the newly remodeled bathroom now that I finally got the carpenter to finish and get out. Now baby girl is attempting to get to sleep while M is back at his dad's spackling a couple of holes and headed to our friends' house to feed their dogs.

I'm telling you, we are busy bees today. I doubt tomorrow will be much better. Happy Saturday, folks.

Friday, June 29, 2007


Little bit is asleep right now. It's morning nap time. I took her upstairs when she started seeming tired, nursed her, hugged her, and laid her down. She babbled to herself for a few minutes...then she went to sleep. Without screaming. Without sobbing. I peeked in on her twice before I believed she wasn't faking me out. I am so happy right now.

I'm also hungry, so I'm going to grab a bite of lunch before she wakes up. Have a great weekend, folks. FIVE SENSES FRIDAY:
Sight: The tiny little chipmunk perched on the fence outside right now. He's staring at something on the other side of the fence, and it's pretty cute. Also, all the veggies that are popping up in the garden. Oh, and the world's largest popovers, which I made for dinner last night.

Sound: Baby giggles.

Smell: The grill.

Touch: Baby buns. I could squeeze baby buns all day. They're so squishy. Amazingly, at S's age squishy buns are a
desirable quality. Not so much at my age.

Taste: Pesto. Popovers. Strawberries.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Absolutely nothing interesting

Life seemed pretty normal today. Of course, I am basing that solely on the fact that we were home and not catching up on laundry. The laundry is all caught up. Sort of. Diapers are washed. Thursday is sheets and towels day.

M's daddy's new sofa and chair were delivered this morning, which got S and I out of the house earlier than usual. The jump start also meant I left the house without my gym bag, so another day of being a lazy bum ensued. I did, however, order my new contacts, shop for a new dress for my upcoming reunion (no luck though), pick up the Rock-A-Bye Baby Beatles CD I've been wanting for baby girl (along with a copy of The Little Red Hen), and order some books that M needs for a seminar at work.

And I washed those diapers.

And made homemade brownies from a new recipe. I fear that I will eat the entire pan by noon tomorrow. They are yummy. Probably has something to do with the fact that I actually used two sticks of butter instead of substituting applesauce.

As for baby girl, she is cracking me up. She's figured out how to roll both ways, although the front to back roll is more of a flop. It's awesome to watch. Bedtime also went better tonight. Kind of. We went through the after-dinner walk, naked time, bath time, and nursing routine as usual, and the little munchkin just didn't want to go to sleep. She wasn't fussy at all. She just wanted to be awake. I very matter-of-factly told her that it was time for her to go to sleep and that I loved her. I kissed her goodnight and popped her into the crib. She immediately picked her head up, looked at me, and started wailing. She cried for 20 minutes and finally went to sleep. That's the first time she's actually done that. We've always set 20 minutes as our time limit for going in and trying to chill her out. We've always had to go back into her room before, so this was a nice change. Hopefully, we're getting there. Hopefully, she'll become a champion bedtimer like K was when he was little. Fingers crossed.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Trailer for sale or rent...

...blah, blah, blah, blah,blah, fifty cents. Yadda, yadda. King of the road.

Okay, S and I lack the necessary equipment for being King of the Road. Plus, we're plural. How about Queens of the Road? That's more like it.

I don't even know where to begin to catch up. I'll start with apologizing for not giving you the heads up that we'd be out of commission for awhile. Everything is fine. Thank you all for worrying about us.

M was out of town for work last week, so S and I went to Dickson to visit. As soon as we got home, we headed up to Fort Fun to work on M's dad's house some more. There's a lot to do, but we're getting there, and the movers come in three weeks. I'm ready to get the show on the road. I think there is a "road theme" today. Completely unintentional.

Baby girl was a trooper for all of the traveling, and I think it took its toll on her. She's completely out of her routine, and I think it freaks her out a little to wake up in different places. Not to mention going to sleep in different places. She seems very happy to be home. Don't tell her we're out of town again next weekend and then again the next weekend. Poor girl.

She has been weighed, for the record. It was over a week ago, so she's likely put on another half pound by now. She was an ounce and a half from nineteen pounds then. And 27 inches long. If you're thinking of whipping out your infant growth charts, don't bother. She's above the 99th percentile for length and weight. She's the average size of a nine month old baby. Yowsers. No wonder my back hurts. We're trying to stick it out with the old carseat for another couple of weeks since it's safety rated to 22 pounds and 29 inches. I'd like to get through all of the upcoming travel before plunking down the next $300. Awesome. Babies are expensive. Worth it, but expensive. Thank God for free breastmilk, eh?

Alright, peeps. I need to catch up around the house while little bit naps. Happy Tuesday to you all.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Steak au Poivre?

Four years ago yesterday, hubby fell off a park bench and asked me to marry him. Because I've seen so little of him lately and to remind him how happy I am that he fell off of that bench, I decided to make him a fantastic dinner. I decided on Steak au Poivre since I'd seen Ina make it last week, and it looked so delish. I plunked down an obscene amount of money for the steaks, and set off to make the requisite French bistro fare.

Let me be the first to tell you: no matter what Ina Garten says, 4 minutes on one side of a 1-1/4" thick filet and 3 minutes on the other will not equal medium rare. It will equal "barely not crawling off your plate." So, what would have been perfect timing for rolls out of the oven-steak resting for 10 minutes- last batch of fried sweet potatoes out of the oil turned into "everything is cold and my steak is still just this side of raw." Total suckage. The brownie pie was even a bit much. Yummy, but too rich without ice cream. With ice cream it would have been divine. At least the wine was good and the table looked nice.
On a more positive note, here are the recipes for the Lo Mein and Orange Biscuits. The Lo Mein is a no brainer. It's a half pound of angel hair pasta mixed with whatever veggies I have in the house. I always use onions and at least one bell pepper. Then I add whatever I can find. The sauce is a mixture of 3/4C of low sodium chicken broth and 1/4C of low sodium soy sauce. That's it. For the record, I do cook the veggies before I mix everything together. I wouldn't want anyone biting into raw onion in their lo mein and blaming me for not telling them to cook it. I saute the onions and peppers in a little olive oil. I blanched and shocked the peas, and I steamed the broccoli just a bit. I usually sprinkle toasted sesame seed on top. I forgot to this time, though.

Moving on to orange biscuits. So you know, the flavor is pretty subtle. If you want "kick me in the face orange flavor" you'll need to tinker with it. I liked the subtlety. I thought they were nice and light. Here goes:

For the biscuit:

2-1/4C Bisquick
2/3C Milk (I used soy)
1/4tsp ground cinnamon

4t sugar

Zest of one orange

For the glaze:
Juice from that zested orange

Confectioner's sugar

Mix up all the biscuit ingredients and turn out onto floured surface. Roll out to about 1/2" thickness. Double over and roll lightly to make it stick together. Cut those suckers out with a biscuit cutter. Bake at 450 degrees for about 8 minutes.

For the glaze, I'd start with a few tablespoons of sugar and add orange juice to it. I went the other way and ended up with something like a cup of icing when I really only needed a little bit. If you've ever made glaze like this, you know how quickly it can get out of control in the pursuit of the proper consistency. I let the biscuits cool for just a couple of minutes before I brushed the glaze on.

Hope the recipes don't let you down...especially the ridiculously simple biscuits.

I'm off. Baby girl and I are dropping sandwiches off at church for reading camp and they have to be there by 9. Then we have to figure out how to get rid of the ants that are creating a new country outside the back door.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Where to begin??

Teeth. Baby girl needs to get the show on the road and just cut those chompers. She randomly bursts into these mini screaming fits, which continue until she finds something to gnaw on. My finger is her favorite, and I can attest to the fact that she's got some mighty muscles in those jaws. Ouch. I'm hoping that she gets a tooth before her check-up on Friday. Don't ask me why, I'd just like to show up with a baby with a tooth.

Speaking of her appointment, we're taking bets on how much she'll weigh. Winner gets the satisfaction of knowing they won the bet. I'm just hoping that she comes in at under 22 pounds because that's all her carseat is safety rated for, and I'd hate to feel like I'm endangering the munchkin every time we get in the car.

Moving on to food. This week has been better. I got my mojo back.

Sunday morning I made orange biscuits. I always hate those sticky, sugary orange rolls, but I wanted something fruity, so I made them up. They were very good, and if anyone wants the Ouiser-invented recipe, let me know. Since then, I've made veggie lo mein, risi e bisi (risotto with peas), veggie fajitas, and lemon squares. I love food. Love.

Lastly, I'm headed to the salon this evening. I've had all the "I have enough hair for pigtails" that I can handle. Kiss it goodbye because it will all be in a pile in a few short hours. I feel lighter already.

I'm off to feed the girl. She's done with napping, and I can hear her playing with Spike the Dinosaur.

Friday, June 08, 2007


I read an article recently about simplifying your life. I read lots of those articles. This particular article (and many others I've gathered) suggested that the first step in creating a simpler life is to get rid of stuff. How much stuff? Fifty things. Not something like 50 CDs. CDs would count as one thing. (Unfortunately, we weeded out CDs a few years ago, so I'm not sure there would be much there.)

I set out on my simplification quest yesterday. I even made a list. Well, the framework for a list. I numbered a piece of paper from one to fifty. The nerdiness within that statement is alarmingly clear. Wow.

Anyway, I worked on it yesterday. Pretty much from early afternoon until 10:30 last night. I got to number three. Three, people. For the record, I threw out the box of leftover wedding invitations, all the old markers and pens that were kaput, and doubles of wedding snapshots (along with all the candid shots with closed eyes and bad light). So I know it wasn't a lot to get rid of, but it was a start, and now ALL of our wedding photos are in albums instead of the envelopes they were in when they were developed.

The cupboard under the stairs also got cleaned out in an effort to find crap to throw out. In reality, that yielded more things to get rid of, but I'm not counting them until they are out of my house...either by garage sale (the big neighborhood sale is next weekend) or donation. There are a few games, some serving trays, and some linens in that pile. So, hey, I guess I'm sort of up to six on my list, huh? That's still a long way from fifty. I'll keep plugging away at it, and eventually I'll hit fifty. Of course, I'm wishing I hadn't cleaned out my underwear drawer last month. At least I'd be up to seven things.

Beyond that, S and I are hanging out waiting for the afternoon storms. We had playgroup at church this morning, and I got to know one of the other new mommies a little better. She's one of those people that I feel is too cool to hang out with me. Not in a trendy cool way, in a "I wish I was more like her" kind of way. Know what I mean? Then again, those people usually turn out to be pretty normal...or really abnormal. Abducted-by-UFOs-abnormal. We'll see how she turns out.

Alright, I've got laundry to fold. I don't suppose that dryer lint counts as a thing on the list.

Have a great weekend.

Sight: baby smiles. baby asleep in her crib.
Sound: sheryl crow's first cd. i hadn't listened to it in ages.
Smell: food cooking on the grill.
Touch: sweaty baby feet. cool, clean sheets.
Taste: chocolate. anything chocolate.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Oh the frustration

Dinner was not as fabulous as hoped. I fear I'm losing my mojo.

I've never been the hugest fan of lemon on fish, so I should've shied away from Martha Stewart's trout recipe, which called for flavoring the trout with lemon. Alas, I thought I may like it this time, and M loves lemon on fish, so I went for it. Issues: the fish was too lemony. The fish was really too thin to be turned into a lemony, fishy piece of leather. The grilled veggies were good though. I basically chopped up everything I had in the kitchen- a green pepper, a red pepper, a vidalia onion, a zucchini, and a yellow squash. I drizzled the whole shebang with olive oil and seasoned it with salt and pepper. M decided that despite being a full-fledged grown up, he still doesn't like zucchini and squash. Dang it. He ate all the peppers out of the mix. I took care of the remainder.

Tonight, I think I'll stick to an old standby that I've neglected to make in over a year. Puffed Pear Pancake. So yummy.

Other than that, M and I have back-to-back dentist appointments this morning. S and I will set off across town in about an hour. Loads of fun. I haven't been to the dentist in over a year. I couldn't bear the thought of it while I was preggers. Hopefully, I won't have a head full of cavities to show for it. Fingers crossed, people.

I've got to go wash some diapers.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

beautiful girl


Remember how I said I was going to try Ina's Brown Rice, Tomato, and Basil recipe? Well, I did. It was not fantastic. It's rare that I make something from a recipe and dislike it, but dislike it I did. Way too much flavor...if you can imagine. The basil was overwhelming. The house smelled great, however. Oh, well. The cowboy cookies I just made are making up for last night's dinner disaster. Hopefully, tonight's dinner will be good, too. I'm making pan-fried trout and grilled veggies. I've never made trout before, but I figure fish is fish, right? At least when it comes to preparation.

Baby girl is still happily spending her nights in her crib. Of course, she's such a drooler that she is sleeping in puddles of her own spit. Awesome. Totally.

Oh- my reusable shopping bags came in yesterday, and I used them when running errands today. I felt so great about it. Same as the cloth diapers. (Thanks to Jaynes Ave and Scarlet Lily for the recommendation on the bags.)

Monday, June 04, 2007

The amazing tale of poopers and the doodle

...the doodle being Otis. Obviously.

We've really started working on the evening routine thing with baby girl. She gets her bath usually between 8:15 and 8:30. Leading up to bath time is (drum roll, please) NAKED TIME. We undress the munchkin and plop her down in the living room floor on a blanket and let her play while her bottom airs out. There's an added bonus of getting to watch her little naked buns.

So far, naked time has been great. No accidents in the floor. Enter last evening.

I was frantically trying to get the kitchen and the kitchen sink ready for her bath while M was working on something in the office (what were you doing??). All of a sudden, there was a fairly panicked cry from the living room, "Sweetie." As I turned the corner in to the living room, M has baby girl pinned with one arm and the dog in a headlock with the other arm.

"We've got poop and a dog."

Awesome. S had a fairly major amount of poopage in a puddle that she was doing airplanes in. It was also running down her leg. I took over the girl while M tried to figure out if Otis was also covered in poop. It was quite the adventure, and all I could do was giggle at how happy S was. She was grinning and cooing and completely thrilled with herself and all of the attention. I'm telling you, having a baby is the world's greatest entertainment.

OH! She also sleeps in her crib now. That's pretty major around here. I'll give a thorough update later. For now, the girl calls.

Happy Monday.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

What is the deal?

I just can't seem to find time to post these days. I suppose having a baby that's getting more interested in playing and going outside and less interested in napping means I'm about to have a lot less free time. I can deal with that. She's just so fun and funny right now. I love this baby.

Not baby related...I've been meaning to post about all the yummy food we've been eating lately. Just haven't made it to the computer. I made panzanella for the first time this week. It was very yummy...M devoured enough of it to feed six people. I count that as a success. This week I'm going to try Ina's Brown rice, tomato, and basil. I can't wait.

I've also got a peach and blueberry cobbler in the oven as I type. I'll let you know how that one turns out. It's a Paula Deen recipe. I'm not her biggest fan- mostly because I think her nickname should be "The Heart Attack Lady." Why do I think this? Example number one: she referred to lasagna as a late night snack on a recent episode. Peeps, lasagna is one of the most calorie-laden meals I can think does not qualify as a snack. Example number two: I saw her deep fry chocolate pound cake last night. Then she topped it with whipped cream. And chocolate syrup. And powdered sugar. It started with pound cake. By definition, pound cake is indulgent- deep frying it makes it downright sinful (don't misunderstand, I love me some pound cake) . I fear that if I was a big Paula Deen fan I'd be a big Paula Deen fan in a very literal sense. Of course, I do love a good southern accent, and hers is so thick I pretty much think she lays it on for effect. It could be worse...she could be Sandra Lee. Gag me with a spoon.

I'm off to finish getting ready for the big cookout tonight. Here's a pic of the girl to tide you all over until next time.