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Friday, May 23, 2008

Monkeys for a Monkey

It only took about a million years, but I FINALLY finished this quilt I've been working on for my nephew Bud. I'm really happy with how it turned out, and in a way it's good it took me so long because the way I ended up doing the binding is way cuter than the way I had originally planned. And yes, I did stitch around every single one of those circles. Oy. Now I've just got to get Cindy Lou's stitched and bound. Maybe by Christmas?


Friday, May 16, 2008

Seven Months Old

Wee Miss Cindy Lou turned seven months old this week. In the last month, she has changed enormously. She got her first tooth, then her second a few days ago. She started eating solid food (though her mouth and her gut are still getting used to it). She started rolling to get around, necessitating the (re-)installation of the gate at the top of the attic stairs. But with all these changes, she continues to be a delightful baby. She's happy most of the time, sometimes even squirmingly ecstatic (especially at the sight of her brothers, whom she adores). And yes, she still sleeps through the night, every night. At the beginning of the week there were a few nights where she woke up a bit early (like, five instead of six), and I thought maybe the time had come to move her out of our room and in with the Wizard. But then her tooth popped through and it was back to the status quo ante. Yay!

The Wizard's also had quite a month. I have often heard it said that almost all kids have an on-off switch when it comes to reading. In the "off" position, they just don't really get it. Then something changes, and everything just comes together. The Wizard's switch flipped over about two weeks ago, and he's sounding out (or at least attempting to sound out) everything in sight: newspaper headlines, road signs, billboards, even the sides of trucks stopped next to us at the light. And of course books. He's always loved to sit and read with us, but now he's often doing more of the actual reading than we are. Just now he read The Eye Book to me, and he only needed help with a few of the words. Wow. We had thought, based on how late he was to start talking, that he would be quite a bit behind Newton in starting to read. Well, not really that far, compared to other kids, but maybe 6-8 months. As it turns out, he's maybe two weeks later. Hard to believe this is the same kid that, on his second birthday, could make all the sounds of the alphabet and produce about 30 different animal noises, but say fewer than 10 words. Remember this?


Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Threes Meme

My sister recently started blogging (about time!) and tagged me for this Threes meme. List: 3 joys, 3 fears, 3 goals, 3 obsessions/collections and 3 random surprising facts about yourself. Tag 5 people at the end of the post by leaving their names and then let them know they've been tagged by commenting on their blog.

3 Joys (I won't list my husband and children here--that's way too obvious)
1. Living in Portland
2. Sleeping in
3. Dual-tuner DVR

3 Fears
1. Driving off the Fremont Bridge (I cross it at least twice a day most days, since it's on the most direct route between our house and Newton's school)

2. Supreme Court Justice Antonin "Nino" Scalia (seriously--I once had a nightmare about him when I was in law school)
3. Losing my mind

3 Goals
1. Play more with my kids
2. Do better at letting the unimportant things go
3. Stop bugging my eyes out all the time. I'm mostly unaware I'm doing it, but when I see candid shots taken while I'm talking, or myself on video, I can see as how small children could be frightened.

3 Obsessions/Collections
1. Table linens
2. Materials for never-finished or even never-begun projects. 80% of these are sewing/craft projects, the rest mostly home improvement.
3. Stone bead necklaces

3 Random Facts
1. I can touch the tip of my tongue to my nose

2. I hate having polish on my fingernails
3. I was a really really really picky eater as a child--like, I'm so glad none of my kids (knocking on wood) are as bad as I was. I would pick every single little bit of minced onion out of my spaghetti sauce or off my Big Mac. I'm amazed my mom put up with it at all.

I tag my childhood friends Krista and Nat, and grownup friends The Scary Feminists from Hell (if any of them are so inclined).


Monday, May 5, 2008


Yes, it's truly spring. The farmers' market is starting to have some real food available (not just greens and other winter carryovers), and the chinook are running in the Columbia. Saturday's dinner was almost entirely fresh from the farmers' market, and fixed in just about the simplest way possible: baked salmon fillets, blanched asparagus, and boiled baby potatoes. I drained the potatoes and tossed some butter in the pot to melt, then realized that I had frozen cubes of chopped herbs in EVOO left from last summer. I tossed one of those in, too, and oh, the deliciousness.

The salmon was sold unfilleted, as "roasts," i.e. the whole fish, gutted and then chopped rather unceremoniously into 2-3 lb chunks. So yay--my first experience with doing the filleting myself. I learned as I went, and the second half was rather neater than the first. It was a tad more than we needed for one meal, so I saved all the little bits, and last night adapted the Chowdah for the salmon, substituting it for the chicken, adding additional veggies (cauliflower and broccoli), using 2% instead of whole milk, and using a couple more of those frozen herb cubes (which probably contain a mixture of parsley, cilantro, basil and dill, though I can't be 100% sure) instead of freshly-chopped parsley. Besides cheddar, we also had a little locally-made dill havarti. Could not have been easier, or more delicious.

I didn't have bread to go with (need to mix up another batch of Simple Crusty Bread), so I made up a spare box of Jiffy corn muffins (bargain of the century at 69 cents a box). Perfect.

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