Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Ten on Tuesday.

1. The little chirpies flew away. Well, they're kind of hobbling around our backyard. But they've left the nest.

2. Let's see, Alla likes eggs again. This is a throwback to her baby days, when I'd cook one up and cut it into strips and she'd think it was a heck of a gourmet night in our house. Now she's asking for them for breakfast. Asking.

3. She also likes hot dogs. We told her they were sausage and she was sold.

4. What I had for breakfast today: 2 veggie sausage patties (really not even close to as good as regular old sausage) and two whole wheat waffles with butter and maple syrup, and a glass of OJ.

5. I'm extremely tired of the 95 degree days already. Sheesh.

6. Took Alla to the Children's Museum today. We spent three and a half hours there - so much time that I didn't have enough cash to pay for parking and they actually gave me an I.O.U. since they don't take credit.

7. Still reading Harry Potter, but taking my time. Cause once it's over it's over.

8. Also started Waiting for Birdy, since a friend recently lent it to me. Comical and insightful and moving thus far.

9. How is it almost August?

10. Wishing we were back in Hilton Head, where five years ago we were arriving, wedding clothes in hand, to make all the preparations for our Big Day. Don't get me wrong, it was hot there, too, but there was beach and friends and waves and salt in the air.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Block Party.

I have never ever lived in any neighborhood where I've been a part of a block party. So this, yesterday, was just something else. It was totally casual, crockpots and side dishes and grills lined up to feed the masses, kids running the blockaded street quite freely, dozens of ride-ons strewn about, chalk drawings in the middle of the street, and homemade ice cream. This was some block party. And, as I've thought many times since we've moved here, this may not be my dream house, but it most certainly is close to my dream neighborhood. Kids to play with almost any day, neighbors to share good news, a babysitter right next door, and just a general feeling of togetherness. We might have to build up or out someday, if we want more space. Cause I don't think I'd want to chance moving to a neighborhood even half as kind as this one.

The party's highlight: the local fire department sent a huge truck for the kids to climb in, and then, the happiest fifteen minutes of all, they turned the hoses on all the kids. Pure happiness.
One last one from earlier in the day, our local festival's parade. Here are my two favorite parade watchers.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Twenty-Seven Months.

Well, technically twenty-seven months and a day.
Today, we exercised.
(Well I exercised and she played legos.)
Today, we ate breakfast together, just like every other day.
She actually requested eggs. And ate eggs. And some blueberry muffin.
Today, we played with friends.
It was more like she hoarded all the babydolls and everyone else had to play with what was left.
Today, we ate lunch together, just like every other day.
She ate an entire packet of Annie's Mac N Cheese, about fifty sugar snap peas, and even some bites of peach.
Today, she did not nap.
She instead practiced her signs, her pedal laughing, and her singing. All the while keeping me wide awake.
Today, we read books.
She loves Just Go To Bed by Mercer Mayer. We need more Mercer Mayer.
Today, we had Pizza Friday.
She ate a whole piece, and that was after having an entire banana for snack an hour earlier.
Tonight, Daddy gave her a bath, just like every other day.
She wanted to brush her teeth first, just like every other day.
Tonight, I put on her big girl underwear for bed, just like the last six days.
She shook her little butt to show Daddy her underwear.
Tonight, Daddy read her two Mercer Mayer stories before bedtime, just like every other day.
She asked to read them again, just like every other day.
Tonight, she fell asleep in my arms nursing, like she hasn't in over a year.
That's what happens when two year olds don't take a nap.
Tonight, we love her more even than yesterday.
If that's even possible.

Kind of Amazing, Isn't It?

I mean, look at the detail. The way it's so tightly woven, those little chirpies aren't going anywhere. Do you see those three beaks? They are hungry like all the time. The poor mama is always flying in with some new catch for them and I am always wondering how she decides who to feed first. Soon as she perches up there on that gorgeous strong nest she built, they stand tall as they can me first me first and the mama some how doles it all out. Soon they'll fly. And we'll be left with an empty nest.

Monday, July 23, 2007

TWENTY on Tuesday!

1. At Barnyard last week, they gave out tattoos. Alla had some tattoos of cows with conspicuously protruding udders for a few days. She liked to call them her tutus.
2. We have 3 more swim classes. I am counting down because I spend the entire time freezing and looking forward to the hot shower in the locker room.

3. On Friday we went blueberry picking with our neighbors. Alla LOVES Carter and Canton. LOVES. Always wants to be over there. Anyway, for a girl who isn't too much into blueberries, she was way into the picking aspect.

4. And of course you have to find something great to do with them, so you check out Martha Stewart and find an amazing muffin recipe that your charming little daughter wants to help you make. She's so cute with her measuring cups, Daddy this is one quarter spoon.

5. Random picture that I lomo'd using my friend Suziebeezie's link.

5. Saturday was BIG. HUGE. Let's get this out of the way first: This came.

6. And then, hold onto your seats, ALLA POTTY TRAINED ON SATURDAY.

7. Yes, I said potty trained.

8. As in NO MORE DIAPERS. I don't know why I insist on using Ron's crappy camera with all that grain but hey it got me a photo of my potty girl.

9. We're pretty excited, pretty proud.

10. But...there was nothing wrong with diapers. They were a heck of a lot easier than wondering if and when she's going to poop.

11. We also got rid of the highchair and she moved on up to her new cooshee booster, in her favorite blue of course.

12. Speaking of colors, you know blue is her favorite color, right? Yes, well did you also know that no one else is allowed to have that color? For example, Ron's favorite color is [was] also blue, but she has reassigned him: Daddy, there's your favorite color black.

13.Yesterday was Leigha's cast-away party. Little Leigha had a "turtle shell" (cast) on her broken leg for four weeks, and today we went to her party to celebrate its removal.

14. Alla started talking about Como Town the day that invitation arrived. And then did not want to ride the rides when we got there. At all. But convincing her to get on one stinkin' ride with her friend must have given her the bug 'cause after that she was an amusement park junkie. Let's go again! And when you photograph at an amusement park, you get blur.

15. Did you check out the Como Town link? See why you should live here? Minnesota is fabulous for kids. Here's the Como Town song that Alla sings, courtesy Ron of course: Won't you take me to, the Como Town, won't you take me to, the Como Town?

16. Did you know? She's his Alla Balla, and she's my Sugarlump. That's what she told me.

17. Our robin's eggs hatched! There are three hungry chirpies in that nest that is impossible to photograph (smart mama). But we can see them from our downstairs window, and we watch her swoop in with some good worm or bug for those little ones. They always want more and that mama is working overtime to keep them fed.

18. The school registration came today for fall. They are allowing her to do drop-off in the spring. As in one day a week for two and a half hours by herself. Whoa. Good thing January is so dang far away.

19. I left Alla with Ron for bedtime last week for the first time. And it was fine.

20. OK, well, that's all I got. For now. Take it all in and enjoy your week. I'm not likely to have anything again til then anyway. But you gotta give me credit for bringing out the big guns this time.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Ten on Tuesday.

1. Today Alla told me that B is for Best Buy. In case you had any doubt who her father is...

2. We purchased a new vehicle over the weekend, so I'm going to use up the next few numbers to give you hints. If you already know, don't shout out your answers! I'm sure some of you are on pins and needles waiting to find out what hipster mobile we have sitting in our driveway.
3. Nope, not a station wagon.

4. No, silly, not a convertible.

5. You guessed it, we are now proud minivan owners. I'm a suburban minivan-driving mom. Point me to the 12-step program.
6. We moved Alla's kitchen up to the next level today. She thought she'd gotten a new toy: It's so tall!
7. Tomorrow we see Barnyard at the AMC.
8. The summer television extravaganza is going well, and I give my husband all the credit. We are nearly through five discs of both Alias and Desperate Housewives, so that means season finales, baby.
9. And then start the next seasons.
10. I officially hired a babysitter for Alla last week for two hours. Running errands by myself was so easy. I even had time for a decaf stop before coming back home for lunch.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

I Take Requests.

Schezuan Spicy Noodles with Carrot-Cucumber Relish
from May 2007 Cooking Light

1 c. shredded peeled seeded cucumber
1/4 t. salt
1 c. shredded carrot
1 T. seasoned rice vinegar
2 t. sugar
1/2 t. dark sesame oil

8 oz. udon noodles (thick, round fresh Japanese wheat noodles)
1/2 c. fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1/4 c. peanut butter
2 T. low-sodium soy sauce
1 T. chile paste with garlic
Cooking spray
1/3 c. thinly sliced green onions
1 T. minced peeled fresh ginger
6 oz. ground pork (you could substitute ground chicken or beef, or even tofu)
2 garlic cloves, minced

1. To prepare relish (and do this earlier in the day, like during the kiddo's afternoon nap), place cucumber in a colander; sprinkle with salt. Toss well. Drain 1 hour. Place cucumber on several layers of paper towels; cover with additional paper towels. Let stand 5 minutes, pressing down occasionally. Combine cucumber, carrot, vinegar, sugar, and oil in a medium bowl; sitre until well blended. Cover and chill 1 hour.

2. To prepare noodles, cook noodles according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain and set aside.

3. Combine broth, peanut butter, soy sauce and chile paste in a small bowl; stir well with a whisk. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat; coat pan with cooking spray. Add onions, ginger and pork to pan; saute 5 mins or until pork loses its pink color. Add garlic to pan; saute 30 sec. Pour broth mixture into pan; bring to a simmer, and cook 1 min or until slightly thickened. Pour pork mixture over noodles; toss well. Serve with relish.


Now, for those ice cream sandwiches I spoke of on the fourth...actually the ice cream sandwich article from a few years back is featured on the CL home page at the moment!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Ten on Tuesday.

Dear Mazie,

I just thought I would tell you ten things about my day today, since I haven't seen you in a long time and I miss you.

1. Mommy and Daddy took me on a walk this morning. I took Baby and Dora and my bunny and a cup of squares. We saw a deer but it ran away before Mommy could get me out of the stroller to see it. She's so slow.

2. I went to Celine's house for a couple hours all by myself.

3. Celine has princess dresses. I call them tutus. We shared tutus. I wore the Cinderella one. It was blue my favorite.

4. I woke up from nap crying for Celine's dresses.

5. Mommy took me to the farmer's market. I took Baby Rolla and Fluffy. Lots of dogs wanted to lick my Fluffy.

6. Farmer's Market sugar snap peas are so good. They are super big. Mommy also bought cukes and cinnamon bread. I don't like cinnamon bread.

7. When we got home we cut paper. I really love scissors. Mommy said she'd get me some that are small like Alla.

8. When Daddy came home he took me to Wal-mart and bought me my own little green scissors, and they work! (He also took me to Best Buy for a video game. My daddy likes video games a lot. I think your Daddy does, too.)

9. Mommy made Spicy Szechuan Noodles with Carrot-Cucumber Relish for dinner. I don't like those noodles. They are eewee. But I did eat lots of pastas and peas. Mommy said their dinner was a keeper and Daddy said it was bangin.

10. Mazie, I hope you had a good day. I hope I can see you again soon. I love you.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

First Fireworks.

First, oohing and aahing.
Then, It itches!
And lastly, some joy from a sparkler.
(This was prior to her touching the hot part and now quite possibly hating sparklers for life.)

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Ten on Tuesday.

1. I had a mole shaved off today. Not because it was worrisome, just because the dermatologist said it probably bothered me. Let that be the worst of my skin troubles from here on out.

2. Welcome, Cate!

3. Cherries for me and play-doh for Al. We're all happy here. (And no commenting on the number of cherries consumed, thankyouverymuch.)
4. A full view of our garden. Yes! The sunflowers bloomed!
5. We are making the famous Killins Cooking Light S'more ice cream sandwiches for the 4th. And maybe finding a sparkler or two. We are super festive here. Hey, fireworks don't happen til ten here. What's a mom to do.

6. Alla pulling Baby and Fluffy around the garden through the backyard in the little wagon, the activity of choice these afternoons.
7. We've eaten outside 4 times now. I know this is an embarrassingly low number. We're on it.

8. There are zucchini in the vegetable patch and we ate a salad with lettuce from our garden on Sunday. What a lovely little Victory Garden.

9. Just some sand play when it was a 'chilly' 68 one afternoon. We get really weak after a few months of warm weather.
10. Happy 4th everyone!