Monday, March 30, 2009

Miss Strawberry Shortcake

Saturday was a lovely spring day. We spent time in the backyard, working in the garden. And, Gillian & I spent some time in the kitchen, too. We had crisped Meyer lemon Gnocchi with Prosciutto for lunch. That was yummy & spring-y.
Gillian made Strawberry Shortcakes for our dessert. She was SO happy making the cakes. She was squealing & giggling the whole time. If ever I got side-tracked to wash a dish or anything like that, she would shout, "Mommy, Me make cake!!!"

She loved cutting in the butter. It gave her a chance to sneak a few pieces of butter to snack on. Her favorite.

The proud chef. She is also wearing a "new" strawberry dress that I found at Good Will. I am so proud of the find! I have a few other items to show you, that I found thrifting.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Happy Spring

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Trying to do Better

Since I recovered from my sinus infection, or whatever that was, we have been doing a lot of stuff around here. I am starting to really feel like Moira's due date is coming soon. The nesting has set in. The home is getting cleaner & more organized. It's a good thing, too. This place was really in need. The warmer weather helps, I think. You know, the spring cleaning urge. I made my self a nesting list. And, I made Scott a Honey-Do list. I didn't want to. But, he made me. It seems to me he always has a ridiculous list of his own expectations for himself, with projects & such. So, I don't like to add to it. But, he made me do it.
Along with getting more done around the house, I am trying to be more thoughtful in planning things to do with the kids. I want to be more engaging. I want to help them learn new things. I want to teach productive ways to expend energy. I don't feel more tired for it. But, they do. They have been napping much better. It is great! So, right now, I am lying in bed, resting my feeble body. I've been here for over an hour. The kids have been asleep since 1:30. The new activities aren't genius. Gillian has been doing an art/craft type project every day. Finger painting, rubber stamping, playdough... I try to have her help me with a chore or 2 every day. Putting stuff away, wiping her little table, etc. And, I have been giving them good outdoor time. We play ball, ride bikes, "work" in the dirt, blow bubbles. I just got a new book & started reading it last night - "The Toddler's Busy Book". It is great. I recommend it. It has super simple ideas on how to do fun things with your little ones. She points out that one of the main things is to plan. Failing to plan is planning to fail. Today, when the kids get up from their nap, we will go outside & play a version of her game "frogs in the grass". It is pretty much a hiding & seeking game. The kids have to find the frogs. Since I don't have frogs, I'll just hide little animals for them. We'll see how it goes. Other things we will do this week - make edible necklaces with shoestring licorice & cheerios. - play bubbles with her recipe for bouncy bubbles, made with gelatin. And, I will make little bubble tools for the kids by taping together cut down plastic straws. Hopefully that will work for them. Bubble wands are still too hard. I have been trying to teach Gillian to blow softly for better success. Still too hard I think straws are a good idea. - Peanut Butter playdough, so Peyton can play, too. He still eats a little too much of the standard playdough. I don't let him do that too often.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

We Had Sun

Sorry I haven't posted in a while. Our week has been rather a dull one, for the most part. It consisted of me going to the doctor 3 times, trying to find out why I was having terrible pain in my jaw. I am now way better, since we figured it seems to be a sinus infection & I am now on anti-biotics.

We did do a few fun things this weekend. Yesterday, I went to a beach house for a few hours to do some scrapbooking. But, while cropping picture number 4, I also cropped my finger. So, I didn't get much scrapbooking done. Oops. I sat outside on the deck with my mom & sister & talked. That was nice, too.

Today it was nice & sunny here. While Gillian was napping, Peyton was doing some gardening.

Then, while Peyton was napping in the car, Gillian & daddy played at the park.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Run, Don't Walk

I entered a giveaway today for some See Kai Run shoes. There are give aways for these great baby shoes all the time. Wow! The current one is at Little Kiwi. Right now, for the next few days, you can buy shoes on a great sale from the See Kai Run website.

It makes me glad it was raining so hard downtown today. I was going to go buy the kids some shoes at Baby Shoppe Santa Cruz. But, there was a down pour there (barely even a sprinkle in my town). So, we didn't want to walk around down there. Did the necessities & headed back home. I fired up the Internets & found this sale. 50% off is better. I picked out the Oliver shoe for Peyton.

Who, by the way, is finally taking steps! Not walking with enough confidence to press on past the first few. But, soon. He deserves a pair of shoes.

Gillian had a bit of a time deciding which ones were best.
She could only pick from the 50% off styles.
That still gave her a tough choice between
blue (June) red, (Yuna) & pink (Lola).
She was delighted by all of them.
But, was positive she made the correct choice in Lola.
She was so hyper-excited about these pink shoes, it took her an hour to finally fall asleep for her nap just now. I need a nap, too. But, figured I'd post for you all, while waiting for her to fall asleep.
I should have been stronger than this - surely she doesn't need them - but, I ordered the Tine shoes for Moira....

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Food Updated

Okay. With the weather as it is, I don't feel like grilling the tandoori chicken tomorrow. We will have that next week. Besides, I need to use the rest of the ground beef that I thawed this morning. I will make this Shepherd's Pie tomorrow. It's nothing incredible. It's just good, easy & affordable. We have had it a number of times. I think maybe I have given it additional seasoning in the past. But, I don't recall what. Oops.

An update on the Pea Soup - I loved it. Scott didn't think the addition of Caraway was a benefit. He wants tradition. Oh well. I will still make it again someday! I like Pea Soup. It reminds me of a date Scott took me on a few years ago. I guess I was pregnant with Gillian at the time.

He was surprised that I had never been to the iconic Pea Soup Andersen's. So, he drove me out to Santa Nella. Not too close. But, not too far. It will be fine! Uh. But, we didn't check the traffic news. And, it so happened that there was a big rig chemical spill that morning. So, the traffic was horrendous! It took us hours. All for Pea Soup! I was pregnant & starving. But, there was no turning around. We were so close. But, we were crawling along. We were sure ready for soup & bread once we arrived in the-middle-of-nowhere-Santa Nella.

It all made for a good memory. Which is something to really cherish. It amazes me, & often really saddens me, how quickly all the sweet times are forgotten. If there is nothing to make it stand out above the rest of the stuff in your memory banks, it just gets filed away & forgotten. I guess it is something to remind us how temporal this life is... And it is a good reason why I should be more faithful with journal/scrapbooking projects. (Let's not even talk about how far behind I am on that...)

Anyway. I will now give you Crescent's Pea Soup recipe. It is a good meal to make & serve during this rugged economy (& inclement weather).

Pea Soup with Caraway Adelle

Adelle, for whom this recipe is named, said, "For me, caraway seed added to split-pea soup makes the difference between mediocrity and sheer delight." Crescent & I agree. Scott is not so sure.

2 c. dried split peas

7 c. soup stock or water

1 bay leaf

2 - 3 t. caraway seeds

1 jalapeno pepper, diced

1 onion, chopped

2 ribs celery, diced

2 carrots, diced

2 potatoes, scrubbed & diced

3 garlic cloves, mashed or chopped

2 t. Worcestershire sauce

salt & pepper to taste

Combine peas, stock, bay leaf, caraway seed & jalapeno in a heavy pot. Bring to a boil, then turn down heat to low, and let simmer, covered, for 30 minutes.

Add the remaining ingredients except salt & continue to simmer until peas & veggies are tender - about 30 more minutes. Season with salt & pepper.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

A Really Good Idea

This weekend, I read about food trucks in my latest Sunset magazine. Here's their online blurb. They don't give you the full article if you don't want to pay the money, okay?!
Anyway. I was so inspired. What great fun. Flexibility & affordability would come with a food truck business. I found the truck I want. Nice, huh?!! I am still trying to decide what I will serve. Perhaps gourmet pizzas? No hurry really. Even though it would be more flexible & affordable than a restaurant, I probably won't have the time or money to invest in it for at least 25 years. So, I have time to decide what I will serve & to get practicing on that.