Monday, January 25, 2010

all partied out.

Three years old.

Three parties in three days.

Three tired members of the Ouiser family.

I'll post all about the festivities later, but for now, this will have to do.

Friday, January 22, 2010


Last night was a tough one. M worked late, so S and I had dinner at Mellie's, which I should've known wouldn't work. Taking S to Mellie's for dinner almost never goes well. She gets way too excited and then she gets tired and when it's time to leave it's time for the mega-meltdown. You'd think I'd learn, but I never seem to. Definition of insanity.

So, last night, she was having her typical meltdown about leaving, and it was getting really close to bedtime, and I'd just about had it anyway. When we pulled into the driveway, she was screaming for all she's worth and flailing about and there's just no good way to handle that when you're dealing with a just-shy-of-fifty-pound kid. I did my best. I managed to get her into the house, and I even managed to get her up the stairs. But then, oh then.

The meltdown got worse. I couldn't even have imagined such a thing. Then I started yelling at her. She was in the floor, and I turned to switch on the lights, and thwack. A sickening smack of my child's face into the edge of an open door. She had somehow flung herself into the door. My back was turned and it was dark and I didn't see what happened. I scooped her up immediately. Pupils were normal. Teeth were all intact. Not much blood, but a little. She split the skin above her lip just a bit. But her nose. I don't even understand it. It immediately had a huge red spot. As in the entire bridge of her nose was all spotted and red. I don't really know how to describe it other than it looked like it hurt. So, we had some bloody snot for a few minutes and lots of cuddling and lots of crying. M got home sometime in the middle of the cuddle/cry fest, and he put her in bed while I put on pajamas and had my own little cry fest. Then I went to snuggle with my girl in bed while she fell asleep. She was fine by that point except for quietly telling me that her nose hurt.

And that was that. I am a little afraid of what she'll look like when I go upstairs this morning. Will her eyes be black? What about her nose? Will she remember? It's just no good at all.

There you have it. Of course, I think/hope the traumatic face injury of 2010 will quickly be overshadowed by the weekend of THIRD BIRTHDAY celebrations. Wish us luck as we fill our mangled kid with sugar over the next three days!!

I'm out, peeps. Happy weekending.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

seeing spots.

S's first Broadway musical is under her belt. I'm not going to say she was great because she wasn't, but she was entertaining. Luckily, our seats were in the very top row, so there weren't many people for her to disturb and she was able to dance as much as she wanted, which was the entire time. We did make her stop stomping her feet (tap dancing, if you will) between songs. She had a blast. She fell asleep on the way home. Not so bad really. That's not counting the total meltdown she had when leaving TPAC when she literally dropped to the floor and bawled. There were lots of sympathetic looks and comments as it was kids' night and I think every adult that passed felt simultaneously bad for us and grateful that it wasn't their children, who were probably hanging on by threads at that point, too.
Dinner at Calypso.
The dancers.
The dude.
Happy to be there. Sweaty from dancing her heart out.

So, that's done.

Moving on. I've decided on another habit, and it's a mental health one. It's something that I always strive for, but sometimes I just get lazy. I'm thinking that making it public will help. When I see something that needs to be done in my home, I am going to do it. Laundry needs to be put away? I'll do it then because, frankly, when I leave it folded in its basket, waiting to be delivered to its various drawers, I become resentful of that laundry. I hate it for sitting there, saying, "you bum. Put me away properly." However, if I do it as soon as it's folded, it really doesn't bother me. Dirty dishes on the counter? Immediately into the dishwasher. I have found that doing things this way leaves me more time to do the things I want to making Valentines with S or making hideous placemats...because I don't have to spend large blocks of time playing catchup. I can spend three minutes instead of thirty. It works for me, and it makes me saner. A major part of this, though, is to not leave stuff lying about. Putting things away instead of leaving them where they were used goes a long way to making this system work. So, there's another habit. Plus, I have enrolled in a belly dancing class, so that's TWO habits!!

I am so on a roll.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

brown is not cheerful.

I woke up this morning and realized that it was one of those days. Not one of those days when you know before your feet hit the floor that you want to be back in the bed. No. One of those days when you realize that you must make something or you'll just explode. So as soon as S woke up, I made some adorable little felt tea bags for Kristie's daughter. I did not photograph them. I don't know why I'm incapable of remembering to do that before I seal up the package to mail. Alas, it was not enough. So, while Feathernester and L and S and I were upstairs, I decided to mercilessly hack into some fabric and do a little sewing.

Backing things up. I am waiting to make that paintbox quilt because I'm going to have to purchase quite a bit of solid fabric to make it, and right now, I am swimming in fabrics. I cannot justify purchasing fabrics while there are so many pieces of material folded upstairs. Most of the fabrics are from my grandmother's stash and they look a little grandmother-y. That's cool, though. Anyway, for the time being all the things that I create from fabric will come from fabric that I already own. It seems wasteful otherwise.

Now to the present. For some reason I decided to mercilessly hack into brown fabric. Ugghh. Now I have six placemat tops pieced together, and I've used some equally heinous tannish-yellow from some old sheets I picked up at Goodwill for the backs of the placemats. Dang. These suckers are not pretty. Not even close. They might pass as endearing in a very home-ec from 1976 way, but these suckers are not from 1976, they are brand spankin' newly made. Anyway, they've used up all the brown fabric in the stash, so that's a start. I'd photograph them for you right now but they're upstairs where the kiddo is very busy not napping.

The other little bit of Ouiser family news is this: we are taking S to see 101 Dalmations tonight. I cannot wait to see her little face. I think she'll love it. And I love free tickets to Broadway musicals!!

Until next time, peeps...

Saturday, January 16, 2010

so much to say.

Today, I feel like there are dozens of things floating around in my head, waiting to be word-vomited into the blogosphere, but I'm having trouble forming legitimately coherent thoughts. I'm hoping that the ideas that are floating will stick around because every time one pops up I think, "Oh, I should blog about that," but then I forget and can't remember exactly what I wanted to say.

I wanted to mention something about the delicious dinner that M and I had at Bound'ry last night. Stuffed Shrimp and Grits, Ostrich, Peanut Butter Chocolate Cake. Yum. And the wine I had was wonderful. And get this. On their dessert menu, they listed dessert beers. For real. I cannot make this up. It's a concept I've never come across, and I am totally intrigued. I did not, however, drink any dessert beer because I had already had two glasses of wine, and we still had to make it to the Schermerhorn.

Then there was the symphony. As we waited for the music to begin, we watched and listened to the musicians warming up, and I was awed by how devoted people can be to the arts. It's just lovely, and I hope that S will either be devoted to the arts or at least appreciate them. I can't imagine she'll grow up in this house and not love art, but just the same...

So, I decided not to blog about any of those things. (Wait. I just did.)

Scarlet Lily has posted about Mighty Girl's Life List. We don't have those, but I did ask M what he would wish for if he had three wishes. Of course he asked me the same, and I think it says something about us that we each only wished for realistic things. His wishes: a hitting partner, a job closer to home, and a study with a big, comfy chair in the corner. I wished for M to have a job closer to home, unlimited art supplies and books, and to travel (specifically to the places on our dream travel list). And that is that. The Ouisers are a pretty simple bunch. Just the way I like us.

Friday, January 15, 2010

there goes another one.

Another week gone. Of course, this week S got to cross another state off her list. Nothing like a trip to Missouri to make your week fly by, eh?

I've come up with another bonus habit. It's going to seem a little ridiklious (which is how S says ridiculous), but here it is. With all the bread baking going on in my little kitchen, I am going to stop using the mixer to knead dough. I am going to actually use my hands. I did it last night, and having my hands in the dough was pretty cathartic. Also, it killed the ol' triceps. I have seen something somewhere about how making bread by hand is one of those lost arts whose loss has contributed significantly to underarm jiggle. Well, not this mama. Not anymore. By golly, I am going to have rock hard triceps to match the biceps that come from picking up a fifty pound kid. Watch out.

M and I are off to the symphony tonight. (Thanks for the tickets, Daddy and C.) Then a birthday party tomorrow morning before the Colts take the field at 715. It's going to be a great weekend. I think I may even get to do a little quilting. Woo hoo.

Have a great weekend, peeps.

Sight: S shaking her booty to the pep band at the basketball game last night
Sound: the pep band last night. i seriously LOVE pep bands.
Smell: onions and garlic
Touch: soft, sticky bread dough
Taste: last week's pistachio frozen yogurt. i am still thinking about it. also, the homemade ice cream we had at Ja Ja's cafe in Alamo, TN

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Any of you out there big fans of Kevin Henkes? You know how in Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse when they introduce the character Mr. Slinger they say, "Wow," that's just about all she could say, "wow." (or something like that.) Anyway.

Wow. That's just about all I can say. Wow.

I quilt. By that, I mean I have made some quilts. I think that means I can say I quilt. I am usually terrified of quilts with lots of pieces because I am just NOT a person who can handle tedious work. My hands cramp up. I lose patience. It's just not my thing. (Unlike my sister, who somehow adores doing things that are tiny and require loads of detail. I don't get it.) However...oh, however. I just saw this on Ohdeedoh. And I may just have to participate. Because...oh, because. That quilt is just flat out gorgeous.

Moving on. I realize that it is two weeks into the new year, and I haven't come up with all the habits I'm supposed to be breaking and adopting and whatnot. I've really tried to think of stuff, but it's hard. So, I'm cutting myself some slack and I'm going to make it an ongoing process until I reach the magic number. Just so you know I'm not flaking out already...even though we all know I'm prone to flaking out. Often.

To close this post out...a picture of S's quilt. I still have to make her dust ruffle, and I want to find her a big Euro pillow, but at least there's a picture of the quilt...the picture that I promised ages ago. Like I said, I flake out.
The Eiffel Tower fabric is my favorite. You know, for my little francophile. Also, the book in the foreground is fantastic. It's sort of a Valentine's Day book, in the sense that Mr. Hatch receives a Valentine, but the story is pretty wonderful, so I think I'll keep it out year-round. Check it out sometime.

Happy Thursday, peeps.

Monday, January 11, 2010

too much credit

I think my husband must give my housekeeping abilities too much credit. A quick exchange from yesterday...

Mr. Ouiser: Honey, where are you keeping the napkins these days? I've been looking all over for them and can't find any.
Ouiser: Um, they're all dirty.

Needless to say, today is laundry day, and Mr. Ouiser will be happy to come home to find the napkins in the same place as always.

Aside from obviously not doing laundry, there isn't much to report about the Ouiser family weekend. We bought a new printer Saturday and Saturday night M and I went to a little surprise shendig for a friend's birthday. On the way home we hit up Sweet Cece's, which is a new froyo place in downtown Franklin. Pistachio Froyo with brownie bites is heaven-sent. Oh. Yum. I slept in Sunday before heading to the farm for lunch. Then I gave myself a wicked headache playing outside in the sunshine with no hat and no sunglasses. I went back to bed when we got home and pretty much stayed there. I'm well-rested to put it mildly. And, I have a great husband. Thanks, babe.

Here are some shots from the farm. Happy Monday, peeps.Oh, and Tuscan Peasant Bread is on the menu for today.

Friday, January 08, 2010

it's the cheesiest

Two posts in one day. I know. Here's the thing. The dinner we just ate, which came out of The Bread Bible, was so good that I felt the immediate need to tell you about it. If you're on FB, you might've noticed the list of cheeses that I had gotten ready for the evening's meal. Mozzarella, Parmesan, Goat Cheese, Fontina, and Smoked Provolone for those of you not on FB. Anyway, all of those lovely cheeses were mixed into Pizza Pie with Cheese.

Holy delicious, Batman. I did a little googling to find the recipe for you all. Here it is.

As for me, I am going to relapse into my cheese coma. Ummmm, cheese coma. Happy Friday, my people.

better late than never.

I know I promised a snow picture yesterday, but I just didn't get around to it. I didn't want to step outside in the near whiteout conditions for fear of getting lost in the snow and not finding my way back into my house. Yeah, right. This is it.
To rip off someone else's quote, I was barely able to see through the 3-5 inches of mostly cloudy this morning.

So, it's back to being just cold. And I am trying to understand how the temperature in my living room, which is about thirteen feet from the thermostat is five degrees colder than the heat is set to. It's maddening. I need to go put on another layer.

Sight: six kids painting in my dining room, several of whom were painting themselves instead of paper. it was wonderfully colorful.
Sound: lots of laughter from a houseful of kids and mamas
Smell: applesauce simmering on the stove
Touch: snuggling with s
Taste: pain de campagne and nutella

Thursday, January 07, 2010

it makes me all tingly inside.

A couple of months ago I did something to my shoulder. I likely slept on it funny or tweaked a muscle playing with S. It resulted in tingly fingers for a couple of weeks in my right hand. (You know the tingly feeling like you're about to have a major battle with pins-and-needles after some part of you goes to sleep?) Well, doggoneit, I've done it again. I keep walking around flailing my hand about, trying to wake it up, but no. It's just going to be like this I guess. So, I'm hitting the anti-inflammatories. Totally annoying.


I've made another decision about my habits. As one of my bonuses, I am going to start wearing handcream with sunscreen. (Thank you, die Frau, and by the way, it was really, really lovely to chat yesterday.) All the ladies in my family end up with horrific sunspots on their hands, and I am hereby vowing to take better care of my hands than they have. I have also started a food journal to help me track what I'm eating. I'm not trying to lose weight really because I'm just fine as I am, but a food journal makes me think twice about having another cookie (and losing a few pounds might be a happy byproduct). I'm still completely happy eating one cookie, but the thought that someone might run across my food journal and see that, "Holy overeater, Batman, Ouiser ate half a dozen cookies. That cow!" Well, that'll keep the cookies in the cookie jar and out of my belly. So, there's two bonus habits. I'm rocking this new year.

Enjoy the snow, peeps. For those of you up north, I promise to post a picture of the great Tennessee blizzard of 2010 this afternoon.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

a good day.

Today has been a pretty great day. It's 31 degrees outside, so it feels like a heatwave. That might have something to do with my excellent mood. Or it might be that S was at Mother's Day Out this morning. It's probably a combination of the two. Either way, it's been a good one. Here's the rundown.
  • Got S out of bed and dressed and brushed her teeth with minimal fuss.
  • Showered. Put on new boots. (With clothes.)
  • Ate some homemade bread* with a little peanut butter. Drank coffee.
  • Took S to school.
  • Talked to friend.
  • Dropped off five bags of clothes at Goodwill.
  • Dropped off a couple of packages at the Post Office and bought stamps.
  • Dropped off a return to LL Bean at the UPS Store.
  • Braved the Kroger on Blue Hair Day, otherwise known as Senior Discount Day, which is something I never, ever do, but the dog was almost out of food, and if I hadn't gone, we really would get eighty-six inches of snow, and Otis would starve. Besides, I'm Southern and it's supposed to snow. I had to buy milk for crying out loud.
  • Picked up dry cleaning. Yuck. I hate dry cleaning, and I never buy clothes that need it because I am certain those chemicals are going to give us all cancer...but I do still have some clothes that require it, and the blanket that stays on our couch, the one that S puked on awhile back, well, it's dry clean only, too. It smells funny now. I am hoping it airs out.
  • Went to House Blend. Talked to Feathernester and Jeremy. Bought a delicious Vienna Latte and a new travel mug to attempt to get my husband off my back about losing travel mugs.
  • Went to Reading Rock and bought a used Bill Bryson book and two beautifully illustrated books for S's upcoming THIRD BIRTHDAY.
  • Went on a mission to find an antique bread box. In the process of which I found an old enamel pot to replace the broken compost pail, a super awesome old cross-stitch piece from 1935, an old metal milk crate for the books in S's room, and a bread box. All for like fifty bucks. I love Dickson.
  • Went to Mel's for leftover pizza.
  • Came home and found that our 2009 photobook had arrived from Shutterfly. Went back to Mel's so we could oooh and aaaah over pictures of my kid.
  • Picked up kid from MDO.
  • Came home and read books to said kid and put her down for rest time.
  • Picked up a bit around the house. Made coffee.
  • Lost internet access for a couple of hours as the cable guy came to fix some issues we'd been having...which resulted in the poor man having to put all new cables up outside in the cold. Luckily, his coat looked thick. S even commented that she liked his nice coat. What a kid.
  • Had a tea party.
Now I'm about to make some banana bread. And M comes home tonight from Louisville. So, barring any major disaster, today is going to go down as one of the best days ever. I love it. Hope your day is moving along nicely as well. Later, peeps.*The three-day bread is delicious. It's Pain de Campagne. I don't normally like anything sourdough, but this is really, really good.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

when will it end?

I am at that point. The point in winter where I begin to feel genuinely sad for my friends in northern climes. I don't know how you do it. You are all stronger than I. It is cold here. Legitimately cold. It's been well below 30 degrees for many days, and I am totally over it. The forecast predicts that it won't be above freezing until next Monday. Now, I know that those of you in New York and Massachusetts are faring much worse, but I've got thin Southern blood. Anyway, inspired by Hygge House, I'm going to try to concentrate on the good things about winter.

M just got new slippers. I swear he's a happier person now. I am actually expecting my new slippers this week. M bought me LL Bean's wicked good clogs a couple of Christmases ago, but I snagged the toe on something, and now there is a gaping hole that lets all my warmth right out. So, warm slippers. That's something nice about winter. Warm robes also make the list. Mr. Feathernester constantly makes fun of the fact that I stay wrapped in a big fleece robe most of the time. At least I'm warm.

Winter makes me appreciate the warmth of coffee and tea. Really, truly appreciate it.

I am also loving our new stovetop steamer. It seems so much nicer than plugging in a humidifier.

I am appreciating warm, comforting foods the way that you just can't in the warmer months. That's about it. It's easy to see why so many people bulk up in winter. It's hard to munch on cool fruits and veggies when you really want something warm and satiating. Something like chocolate bread pudding. Not that I want any. Really. Who am I kidding? I'd love a big bowl of chocolate bread pudding right now.

Oh, I almost forgot. I thought of another bad habit to break, but this one's a doozy. I'm going to try to stop biting my nails. I know I can do it because I stop all the time...for special occasions. Isn't that funny? If I have a wedding or event to attend, I'll quit biting my nails, but as soon as I get in the car on the way home, my fingers go straight to my mouth. I know it's disgusting, but I've been biting my nails for as long as I can remember. So, anyway, I'm giving that one a try. You have my permission to smack my hands out of my mouth if you catch me. Or you could just nicely ask me to stop my revolting habit instead of hitting me. Your call.

Monday, January 04, 2010

now there's an idea

I just read that Kim Kardashian sleeps in workout clothes as motivation to go to the gym. I actually think that sounds pretty brilliant...especially in the miserable winter cold when the thought of getting out of my warm pajamas to put on gym clothes is enough to keep me in pajamas half the day. I wonder, though, would I have to sleep in a sports bra? Nothing says sexy like a lady with a sports bra-induced uniboob.


I normally shy away from USA Weekend in the Sunday paper. Mostly, I'm boycotting the loss of Parade magazine because I liked it more. However, this week, Dr. Oz was gracing the cover, and I kind of like that guy. He seems to sincerely care about people. So, I gave it a look-see. The Dr. Oz article had some tips on how to feel better in the new year, and they were great and all, but there was also an article about Mayo Clinic's new (and first) diet book. It suggests that instead of dieting in the count-calories-and-binge-workout sense, you adopt lifestyle changes. Now, anyone with a decent head on their shoulders knows that's the way to do it. I can eat salads for a month and go to the gym everyday and lose weight, but I'm not going to maintain that because eventually I'll fall off the salad wagon. But instead of suggesting that you just flat out declare that you're going to change your lifestyle by working out regularly and making healthier food choices, which is frankly no different than the aforementioned scenario, it suggests that you add new healthy habits and abandon five unhealthy habits and adopt five new bonus habits. It seems like a dang good idea, really. Because these habits can be little things. Ditching sodas (ahem, Ouiser, we're talking to you. blog just spoke to me).

Since I don't really do the whole new years resolution thing, I thought I might give this a whirl. Besides, my life is pretty awesome. The only things that I would change would be that I would make sure M and I take better care of ourselves and that I would move his office closer to home (is anyone at Stantec listening??).

And here it is. I am going to start taking the vitamins that M wants me to take (because I've been sick off-and-on for over a month and he hasn't so he swears it's because he takes vitamins and I don't). I'm also going to start flossing every single day. I'm usually kind of lax about it, only flossing every few days. I'm going to make sure that I eat breakfast everyday. I know that this will help with my recent issue of blood sugar that totally bottoms out. That's only three new good habits, but Mr. Mayo Clinic suggests that all these habits are adopted and broken over a two week period. I'll keep you posted. As for breaking bad habits...I will continue to lay off sodas, but I do love an occasional cherry coke from Sonic, and I will not feel guilty about it. I will, however, drink smalls. That's all I've got for now.

We'll see.

Saturday, January 02, 2010

this breadmaker's dilemma

I've now made four recipes from The Bread Bible, one of which I made twice. The two-timer was French Bread. I had decided not to try to get recipes exactly right, but then I looked at the new magnet on my fridge: What Would Julia Do?


Julia would most certainly attempt to get French Bread right. In fact, having read one of her biographies, I can say that she went to amazing lengths to get it right. So, I made that one twice, and I got significantly better results on take two. I won't make that one many more times, though. There is no fat in French Bread, and so it doesn't keep well. I was left with a baguette-shaped brick after less than 24 hours. Oh, well. On to bigger and better things.

The four breads have been the White Mountain Bread previously discussed, French Bread, Water Rolls, and Mile-High Popovers. For the record, the popovers rose no higher than my old recipe's popovers. They tasted significantly different, though, as they contained half a dozen eggs. Good. Lots of cholesterol. I've also made the starter for one of the other breads, but it's a three day process. I'll let you know how it turns out.

Back to my dilemma. All this breadmaking is creating a lot of dirty dishes. The mixer bowl, the paddle attachment, the dough hook, the measuring cups and spoons, the container that the dough rises in, the pan the bread bakes's kind of exhausting to keep up with all of it...not to mention that, seemingly, every step of breadmaking leaves me, my counters, and my kitchen floors covered in a fine dusting of flour. It's a ton of work. Luckily, I'm dedicated. For now.

As for an update on my Christmas books...The Gentle Art of Domesticity is a little disappointing, which is, well, disappointing. I'd been making googly eyes at that one for months. Unfortunately, the author's main creative outlet is knitting, which I don't do, so it doesn't hold my interest terribly well. It's at least pretty to look at. The Lost Continent, on the other hand, is fabulous. It's funnier than A Walk in the Woods, and that's saying something. It's also saying something that I find it hysterical even as they rip on my beloved South. It's just that good, and I do love me some Bill Bryson.

Okay, I'm off to finish my sister's birthday cake. Later, peeps.

Friday, January 01, 2010

thanks for the memories

So long, two-thousand-aughts. You've been good to us. M and I realized that the past decade has been pretty amazing. We met in 2000. I graduated from college in 2001. He got his masters in 2002 and tried out life in Oklahoma. We moved to Lexington in 2003. We got married in 2004. We bought a house and got Otis in 2005. 2006 was pretty lowkey except for the whole getting pregnant thing. S was born in 2007, and M's dad joined us in Lexington. We moved back to Tennessee in 2008. And by 2009, we were finally settling in to our lives exactly as we wanted. Things are calm. We are very blessed, and we appreciate those blessings every single day.

Enough of that, though. I know you just want to know about Christmas. S had a blast, and she is loving all of her presents. To those of you who sent her things, thank you. You'll be getting notes as soon as I can find the cards! Until then, know that your gifts are loved.

So, Christmas Day. The first thing S did was check to see if Santa had eaten his cookies...and if he'd fed his reindeer with the food she left for them. Then she hit the gifts. She opened the Disney Princess Doll Collection first, and those suckers are a big hit around here. She opened all of her presents in between stripping the princess dolls. After gifts, we got dressed and went to Mellie's for breakfast where S got her Super S cape, which is super friggin' cute. Then we went to visit Mr. P and give him the gifts Santa left for him. Then home for showers. Then off to Columbia where we spent the entire day playing games and eating and enjoying being with family.

As for gifts, I've already mentioned most of S's. M got a GPS because he doesn't get enough of maps in his day-to-day existence. I also got him a wicked awesome SmartWool sweater, but it's too small. The man has seriously long arms. And he got some new SmartWool socks. As for me, I got books. Lots of books. My new titles: The Lost Continent: Travels in Small-Town America; The Gentle Art of Domesticity; Slow Food Nation; Mere Christianity; A Short History of Nearly Everything;Guns, Germs, and Steel; Organic Gardening Down South; Her Fearful Symmetry; The Bread Bible; and The Art of the Commonplace. Of course, those are just the books that Santa brought. My sisters gave me a chocolate chip cookbook, and I must say that the layered mocha mousse that I made yesterday proves that it's a very promising book indeed.

It was a great Christmas. S helped us de-Christmafy the house, and she said goodnight to all of the nutcrackers as they were wrapped up for their long naps until next year. Then she got upset because I put away her Christmas books. Then she remembered that she got oodles of new books, and life is good once more.

Now the Ouisers are back to our normal Ouiser selves. Cooking. Reading. Playing. Organizing. Laughing. Loving our lives.