Sunday, November 28, 2010

Joyful Living with Snot-Nose McGee

This is the week!  I decided to start a Joyful Living group and this week is the first gathering.  My heart-to-heart, ego-stabbing friend Danor (whom I love) is the creator of this group.  However, hers takes place in Texas.  So, with her permission, I am creating a group by the same name for the women in my life.  The basis is that we will get together twice a month and support each other in whatever way we might need in that moment.  I am excited about having a group of ladies I can count on for honest feedback and loving support.  I can't wait!  I know it will be an amazing group and I am excited to see what it becomes.
My love is still snotty and hacking.  Her poor little throat must be raw!  Naps have been short lived, interrupted by a coughing fit that jars her awake.  Isn't one week of this nonsense enough?   I want to find a machine that will make me as small as a blood cell, then I will crawl  into her mouth, down her throat and find all the nasty spores (or whatever they are) and shoot them with my special laser gun until they are all dead.  Stupid illness.  
Thankfully Ro's spirits are still high.  Like last night, when she was laughing and scooting all over the place until 12:30.  No joke.  The night before it was 11pm.  Not cool.  There is something about leaving all the dishes strewn across the kitchen and groceries still in the bags until the wee hours (well, until the next morning) that makes me feel incomplete.  As if there is a ball and chain that I am dragging around until it gets done, until I can see the kitchen counter again.  It's almost as if the cleanliness of the counter frees up some of my lung capacity.  I can actually feel my breathing get easier and my muscles relaxing.  Last night this did not happen.  We had our fun though.  

We took a bath

Hunted for a little tennis ball

And checked out the tupperware cupboard again

And eventually she fell asleep.  With heavy snoring.  Danged snotty nose!  I will be the first to admit that I COMPLETELY underestimated the amount of energy a baby takes.  I mean, I knew it would be a lot of work (everyone in the world told me it would be, so I figured it was true) but I had no idea how draining it is.  I am thoroughly exhausted at the end of a day.  I love the time with my sweet, smiley baby and I look forward to the few hours of down time (aka time to do dishes, iron clothes, tidy up) after she falls asleep.  So you can imagine that when she stayed up until 12:30, I was wiped!  Needless to say, the snoring didn't effect my ability to fall asleep.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Rosanna's First Thanksgiving!!

Wow- I am a mom this holiday season.  Whoa, slow down.  My baby's first thanksgiving?  *Whimper* I love this stage of Ro's life.  She's so much fun and such a little character.  Can she please stay this way forever?
Unfortunately my baby was (is) sick.  She wasn't super miserable, unless she had me in her sights.  Then the tears would flow and the nose would drip, and that was my cue.  Some people think our method will create a monster.  That this is spoiling my beautiful creation, and frankly I resent that.  "Spoiling" is something that happens to old milk or over-ripe fruit.  Responding to a baby's needs is just that.  I am now dismounting my soapbox, before things get out of hand...
The following record of Ro's first Thanksgiving is sprinkled with tears and (sicky) rosie cheeks- see previous paragraph- and LOTS of food.  We generally make our thanksgiving extra special by adding an extra dinner.  Two families=two celebrations.  Lucky us!!

Hangin with Uncle Dan

Aunt Morgan & Uncle Russ
When's chow time?

So full....


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

2 Pies and a baby

Today I tackled some of my Thanksgiving commitments.  I've never actually made a pumpkin pie before.  So today I did it!  I had pumpkin from last month's pumpkin meat harvest and I made a pie crust with cinnamon in it (a nice thought, but I think this will not make a big difference).  I used the blender to get my pie filling nice and smoooooooth!

The result was a pie that was darker than the usual grocery store pumpkin pie, I hope it tastes amazing!

While I prepped and baked, Ro and Daddy had some fun:

Soon Ethan had to head off to work, so I had to find a suitable kitchen activity for the little one.  Good thing I have a dedicated tupperware cupboard, it works great as a mommy-worry-free zone.

The cupboard's special baby-distracting powers were short lived and she was ready to be cuddled by her mommy.  Of course, I obliged.  How could I resist?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

9 months?!

I used to hate caramel apples.  There was no graceful way to eat them.  I would inevitably have apple juice streaming down my chin and my cheeks would be sticky from trying to get a bite off of the apple.  UGH!  I get frustrated just thinking about it!  Then, one day, someone cut up my apple for me.  Brilliant!!  I could hold the pieces in my hand, take bites, get apple and caramel all with out the mess- and so the love affair was reignited.
Fast forward to this past friday.  It is mandarin festival time (yay!) and we went, hoping to beat the rain (which we didn't).  One of the vendors there was a candy company who seemed to specialize in my old nemesis.  There were SO MANY options!!  Probably 20 different varieties!  Some of the apples had so many toppings that the apple was twice the normal size- imagine a large grapefruit.  Wow.  Then I had to choose one.  I wanted ten.  Argh, the drama! I decided on this one.  And it didn't disappoint.  It became my dinner, and it was glorious:

We, of course, purchased mandarins as well as some mandarin spread.  It was fun, despite the rain and cold.  I think hanging out with family is a hoot no matter where we are :)

Rosanna's uncle Chuck got her the cutest hat while we were there.  She kept it on too.  This photo is from today, bundled to go to the farmer's market in Roseville.  What is with the deep-freeze temps lately?

And in other news: today is Rosanna's 9 MONTH BIRTHDAY!!!!  To celebrate, here are some Ro-moments caught on camera:

Eating dog food:

Harassing the kitties:

Cruising down the hallway with cousins:

And lastly, sucking on a individual sized jelly packets:

Who loves this baby girl?!  I DO!!  Okay, one more...I can't help myself:

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I'm Living Where The Green Grass Grows

...not watching the corn pop up in rows....and that's ok! 

Today was so beautiful!  Weather was perfect, sky was blue and the baby needed a change of scenery.  So we took a trip into our big back yard.  One the other side of our fence is a field with vast expanses of green grass- so off we went!  And one minute later, we arrived.  I've heard of babies getting a little put-off by different textures, so I was curious to see how the munchkin fared.

She did great!  No problem.  Well, until she took off!  Here she has been chased down by her Daddy and hauled back to our area:

She's not a goofball AT ALL.  Neither is her Daddy.  The short story is that she had a great time.  It was too much fun.  She took off several times. This one she even checked up on us a few times, just to see if we were gonna follow.  Then, I guess she decided she had gone far enough, so she plopped herself down and squawked and clapped her hands.  Much to our enjoyment, of course!

Then, because she had gone so far, and was gone for sooo long, I forced some kisses on her- which she returned.  I love this kid.

The second most fun thing to do (after running away from Mommy & Daddy) was to steal Daddy's hat.  Who knew hat stealing was this entertaining?

Just before we made the long trek back home, it was time for some good, old fashioned baby swinging.  My professional photographer risked spit-up and drool strings to capture these giggly moments:

For some reason my kid gets a kick out of being upside down.  We get a kick out of it too.  She is such a goof!

I love this little family.  I LOVE (to be pronounced loudly, assertively and full of joy) my family.  MY FAMILY!  We created a new family, and I love us.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Baby Food Factory and Donner!

My friend Kristi and I have a commitment to our children's health and this commitment took form over the weekend as an entire day of making baby food.  First we went to the farmer's market and loaded up with the good stuff.  When I say "loaded" I'm not kidding.  It happens to be squash season and squash are not light!  We were basically hauling ourselves and our children back to the car after making our purchases.

Aren't they so sweet?  Our trip to the market was really lovely and uneventful.  The weather was perfection and the changing colors of the trees always makes me happy.  Our only if-y moment was when we were practically pulling into the driveway and both babies began to cry simultaneously.   Thankfully we were home and we both got a humbling giggle about how maybe we aren't ready for baby #2 just yet.

The rest of the day was spent peeling, chopping, steaming, baking and scooping.  So much prep!  And so worth it...

We unintentionally stumbled upon how to make applesauce, it was super yummy!  What lucky babies we have.  Next, everything took a whirl in the blender.  Hopefully Kristi won't hate me for posting this picture of her, I think it's totally cute and represents our afternoon well :)

Look!  Our eggplants have hearts in them!  This baby food is absolutely infused with love:

And finally, everything gets poured into ice cube trays and frozen.  There was SO much puree!  This is just a small peek into the final result, I think we'll be set in the baby food department for awhile...

Yay for good friends, we love our Kristi and Em :)

But wait!  The next day is my mom and my sister-in-law's birthday!  So I whipped up some vegan (and super delish) chocolate cupcakes with a non-vegan caramel and chocolate icing, so pretty and sooooo yummy.

My amazing mother decided that for her birthday she wanted to do the Turkey Trot which is a 7 mile race around Donner lake.  So I decide to join her....a nice idea at the time.  That morning, up at 6am.  Not a cool idea anymore.  Driving up into the mountains: snow.  Ugh!  Really?!  Luckily I love my momma and we didn't turn around.  It was COLD up there.  COLD.  The wind wasn't helpful.  Everyone was bundled and I got nervous when an announcement came over the speaker about taking care on the hills because of snow and ice.  Seriously.  Despite it all, we ran.  And it was perfect!  We even got hot and had to peel a layer or two.  We also had a nice discussion about whether or not there were human bones in Donner Memorial Park and whether or not they had been chewed on by other people....
We finished the race in 1:30ish.  Just where we wanted to be!  And my mom, the rockstar that she is, had to pull me along the last mile or so- I was pooped.  I am so glad she wanted to do this for her birthday, it was beautiful and amazing and I loved it!