9.30.2010

Tomatoes at Christmas

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Earlier this week Easy and I received an email from his dad.


I do feel bad for those wimpy Californians. How horrible it must be to live near the beach when it is 100+ degrees out. Tragic! I mean, what are they to do?

I remember last year around this time...we were loving life.


I have been trying to get my fall/winter garden going, but this heat is making it so hard on my little seedlings. If I were outside all day I suppose that I would just wilt up and die as well or pray that a little bird would come and snatch me up.

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Don't get me wrong though - I love the thought of having a winter garden - especially after July pillaged all my plants I worked so hard to move and transplant here. Perhaps I will be lucky though and we can have tomatoes at Christmas.

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On thing is for sure and that is we will have plenty of basil. This thing is out of control! Perhaps I should dry some. Any advice on that?

Oh, and we are also sure to have peppers - because they love the heat and are thriving in my little raised bed.

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So forget the ham!
Dec 25th: Fiesta en mi casa!

9.29.2010

Feeling Fancy

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Last week I picked up my girls from my friend Christen's house after a long day of volunteer training. Blondes was wearing one clip-on earring in her ear flitting around that house. It made me wonder and I asked her if she wanted to get her ears pierced. After many previous "no's" on past occasions she looked at me and said, "yes."

I was shocked. Really? Did she remember that this involved pain? I explained to her that it would hurt and would feel just like getting a shot in her ear. She thought about it for a minute and later told me that she still wanted it.

My mother made me wait until I was eight to get mine done. I think because it just seemed like an appropriate age to her. I'm not sure entirely why, but I have just assumed that this rite-of-passage would be appropriate for my girls when they felt ready for it.

I made Blondes watch a couple of videos online and also made her sit on the idea for a day - it was a long day. After being the longest day ever of her waiting and waiting and waiting her dad finally came home and off we went.

She chose pink cubic zirconium studs.
She got the both done at once.
She told them she was ready.
She held my hands.

They counted.
1.
2.
Bam!!

She didn't even flinch or cry.
She got a purple sucker.

And off we went feeling a little more fancy than before.

9.26.2010

September Faves and Craves

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1. Love Burt's products. This shower gel is awesome.

2. I'm so excited for scarf season. This chunky one from Target would go with anything and I also love the handmade/vintage look of it.

3. Loving the zippers on these Steve Madden boots and I have always been more than satisfied with the service at Zappos. My chocolate boots from 2 years ago are holding up really well though, so I can't justify getting another pair.

4. Sweater. It speaks for itself.

5. I bought Ali this bracelet for her birthday and had the hardest time actually giving it to her because I loved it so much. It isn't available online, but I'm sure you can find it in the store.

6. Ruche has done it again. This tee is perfect.

7. My legs want tights and I'm not afraid of the funky ones.

8. Now that the weather is cooling off (is it really?) I can't wait to bake again. I'm also a sucker for cute aprons.

9. There is supposedly a pumpkin-ish Jamba out there. I'm so going to try one this week. I heart Jamba and I heart pumpkin.

10. Referring to #8: I can't wait to fire up this bad boy and make bread again. And cinnamon rolls. And cookies. And cake. And anything else that involves loads of butter and sugar.


Fave song on my iPod this month:



Happy Fall!


9.24.2010

The Growth of an Old Soul

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This morning I sat in Roo's room with her cradled in my arms for a last minute's snuggle before her nap. As she downed her bottle I listened to her slurp and swallow. Her eyelids gave up, closed, and I couldn't help but examine those long little legs that now hang down off my lap, onto the chair, and into the air beneath.

She is perfect to me.

She has long beautiful lashes - that I covet - and the little hair that she has curls at the nape of her neck. Her sweet cheeks are as soft and kissable as ever and those deep brown eyes melt me.
I love her laughter and the way she scrunches her nose. I love that I feel so connected to this little beast. I love that she sympathy cries when her sister's are upset and how excited she gets when her daddy walks into the room. Mostly though, I love her wide-mouthed kisses and how she lays her head on my chest when she is feeling tired.

There has always been something very sweet and different about our Roo. I love that when she was just tiny a woman asked her age and then responded that she seemed so much older than 4 months. I mentioned that it was peculiar how we had heard that often. She replied, "Well, she is probably an old soul." I took that moment and tucked it in my pocket. It seemed so appropriate that Gigi would be an "old soul." Somehow, it just fit.

With that being said, I just wish that this "old soul" would stop growing.

I miss my baby.

I don't know what happened over the last year. No matter how much I wanted to keep her little and no matter how hard I tried to savor every stinking moment - she grew.

She crawled. She ate table food. She weaned herself. She stands and claps, points to her nose, nods her head and says "mama mama mama," and plays hide-and-seek.

And she is going to be 1 before we know it.

:(

9.22.2010

Knotting Tulle

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This morning the girls and I sat around cutting and knotting tulle for Blondes' Halloween costume and listening to my Hay's Hypno playlist on the iPod. It includes artists like Moby, Imogean Heap, Cat Stevens, Nick Drake, Pedro the Lion, Yo La Tengo, and Pinback.

Nothing better then mindlessly keeping my fingers busy while chatting with my girls and listening to good music.

I have a strict policy on Halloween that involves only allowing the children to be something that is appropriately scary and mostly homemade. My girls agree to this as long as there is a little bit of sparkles, makeup, or the color pink involved.

Blondes has chosen to be a witch and Mae wants to be a "pink monster" - of which plans are still in the sorts. I'm looking for pink fur - Joann's? Roo will sport Mae's old mummy costume.

I often get asked how I have the time to do things like this while in nursing school and I've honestly never known what to tell people. I make up dumb excuses like, "Well my house is a disaster!" Which it often really is.

I think I've figured it out though.

Taking time out to paint, cook, craft, sew, garden, take pictures, (and blog) are essential to my well being - I think it's how I cope. And when I don't make time for it I tend to feel bottled up - and out pops a fat cold sore - just like that!

Plus, I believe that creating is part of the bigger picture. What good are we doing if we are not making this place a little more beautiful?


"The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul. No matter our talents, education, backgrounds, or abilities, we each have an inherent wish to create something that did not exist before.

Everyone can create. You don’t need money, position, or influence in order to create something of substance or beauty.

Creation brings deep satisfaction and fulfillment. We develop ourselves and others when we take unorganized matter into our hands and mold it into something of beauty...."

-Dieter F. Uchtdorf

update: i guess my cold sores did me a little good since i did well on my test monday night. woohoo! :)

9.20.2010

Off Kilter.

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I'm off balance.

I think I have been running on empty too long. This is the second day in two weeks that I haven't woken up with a headache and how incredibly fortunate for me two set of blisters have popped up on my lips over the weekend - which means things really aren't right. How cute. One on top and one on bottom.

It's embarrassing that I wear my stress on the outside like this.

I'd like to think that I appear to be put somewhat together, but unfortunately I live with the curse of stress induced cold sores so my smile has a hard time hiding my frazzled mind.

Some of the biggest moments of my life are marked with them. I can't exactly remember how many grade school photos they've ruined; second grade was particularly bad. I do remember that one time in high school I had (count them) five! One was even in my nose.

Another - A souvenir from my honeymoon.
Next - A gift postpartum.
Now - A reminder that I am trying to make it through my last semester of nursing school.

8 more weeks. It's really so close that I can taste it.

FREEDOM!
(i'm planning my escape...with my family of course)




Maybe then I can get myself put back together.

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9.17.2010

Off Line


My internet connection is on the fritz and trying my patience.


See you soon.


9.14.2010

Dear Easy,

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I know that things are crazy busy at work.
And that you have been pulling 10+ hour days there.
And that they really need you.

But MaeMae is picking on us all again.

I've tried giving her extra attention.
I laid on our bed with her for 15 minutes trying to reset her mood.
I have distracted, separated, and redirected her.
Nothing is working.
I even have promised and given c.a.n.d.y.

What I'm trying to say is that
We miss you.
And I'll be so glad to greet you at the door today.

xoxo,

H



9.13.2010

To His Heart - by way of the stomach

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Easy loves naan.

So when I want him to know that I've been thinking of him and that he is my favorite man - I make it for him.

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I even stand barefoot on burning concrete... in 100+ degree weather... in front of a scorching hot grill.

I don't know what can say love much more than that.

Well...may be this?

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See? Roo loves Easy too.

I'll admit it here and say that he is her all time favorite. Good thing because I wouldn't want to leave her three nights a week and all day Saturdays with someone she doesn't absolutly adore. I swear it that she saves her special little giggles and very best kisses for him. She is delighted when he enters the room and comfortably snuggles up to her bottle and him every evening for some special bonding - no moms allowed.

Lucky girl.

Naan

2.5 tsp yeast
1 c warm water
1/3 c white sugar
3 T milk
1 egg, beaten
2 tsp salt
3.5-4.5 c flour (white or wheat)
2 tsp minced garlic (optional)
1/4 c butter, melted

Dissolve yeast in large bowl with the warm water. Let stand until frothy. Stir in sugar, milk, egg, salkt, and enough flour to make a soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface (or continue mixing with bread hook) until soft and springy.

Place in oiled bowl and set aside for 1 hour or until double.

Punch down and knead in garlic. Pinch off golf ball sized pieces and roll into balls. Place on a tray and cover with towel for about 30 min.

Preheat grill. Med-high heat

Roll out balls into thin ovals. Stack them with paper towels in between to keep from sticking and take them to the grill with the butter. Cook on one side until bubbles appear. Brush with butter and flip. Then brush the cooked side with butter while waiting for it to brown.

Don't plan on having any leftovers. Somehow they will all disappear.


Chicken Tikka Masala here.

Note: If you make the masala please do not add all that salt the recipe calls for. You will hate me for posting this and probably defriend me. Instead wait to salt until the end and taste it as you do (I ended up only using about a tsp). I also cut out the cayenne and the jalapeno and I used coconut milk instead of whipping cream because that is what I had.

With all that being said the Masala was awesome!


.

9.08.2010

Forgetting Study Group

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Last night I walked out the door at 7pm to go to study group. The girls moaned which is nothing new...they always hate when I have to leave for school.

I got to the car, checked my phone and there was a text. I turned around and walked back in the house just 30 seconds later - my last study-partner had bailed.

The girls were confused then delighted that I didn't have to leave.

Three nights a week Easy does the job of putting all three children to bed solo. He is a good man.

Last night I took over the duties of reading to the girls, scratching their backs, and waiting for them to drift off into dreamland.

Mae went out like a light. Blondes waited for me to come snuggle with her and rub her back, but was a sweetheart and offered to scratch mine first. After she was done I rolled over and she held my face in her hands. She told me that I was the best mommy ever.

This is huge to me. I often feel guilty that I'm not giving my girls enough. That I'm not measuring up and that school is inhibiting my mothering.

I asked her if she wanted to talk for a while and in hushed voices we explored her day together. We giggled as she talked about her day at preschool where they went on a field-trip to the Case's house to see the animals - complete with a pig that's belly almost brushes the ground, dogs that stayed in the house, chickens - which are nothing new to her, and a turtle that is "this big," comes from the desert, and hibernates. She said that she actually touched the black pig with just her pointer finger one time - she shuddered as she told me about it. The turtle she actually didn't see - which made me laugh because she was the most excited about it.

I tell you all this because I would have missed a thousand study groups for this moment with my girl.

And for that moment, I did feel like "the best mommy ever" as I scratched her back and thought about her nervously touching the black pig. I kissed her face and waited for her to drift into dreamland.


9.07.2010

No Rest for the Weary

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Touring the Tonto Fish Hatchery, Sept 2010

The five of us have returned from the mountains after some much needed R&R.

I almost bailed on the thought of having to pack and prepare for a 3 day camping trip, but we pushed through those feelings of wanting to sleep in our own bed and lounge around the house for fresh mountain air and nights sitting around a fire. Plus we were going with our friends, The Glover's, and we couldn't bear the thought of bailing on them.

So Saturday after clinical I came home, did a little last minute packing, and we took off to The Rim.

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Now I'm feeling pretty refreshed, revived, and more ready to take on this chaotic life of mine - Even though there is still much post-camping-cleaning and organizing to be done

On the list for today:

Get dressed
Finish laundry
Clean fridge
Blondes preschool this morning (don't forget snack!)
and Music Class this afternoon
Hays study group @ 6

On the list for this week:

Study
Finish clinical papers
Go to AA (for class)
Plant my winter garden
Study
Fix chicken coop before I drop-kick Red Ruby (she keeps flying the coop and crapping all over the patio)
Attend training for Hospice of the Valley (volunteer)
Study

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p.s. Fish hatchery's are disgusting.


9.01.2010

Sweaty Betty

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I have a big fat test today. Ugh. I'm soooo dreading it.

This is the first of my last nursing school exams. Eeek! My new instructor is ridiculous. She is a fountain of knowledge, but is practically dropping bombs of reading and study material on us.

Adding to that our AC was on the fritz all through the night and into this morning. Double Eeek!

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Just before the AC man came we hit 86 degrees. I was sweating. The girls were moping. Roo was sauna-napping.

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So we distracted ourselves.

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We sat in front of the fans,


drank loads of lemonade, and anticipated Otter Pops for after lunch.

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High of 110 today. It will hit at the time I leave home for that dreaded test.

Welcome September!

p.s. This means we only have one more month to endure hell in Phoenix. Yipeeeee!
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