Thursday, February 28, 2013

Eggs and Pancakes

Our recovery is not going as well as I'd planned, mostly because Thing One got sick just as Thing Two was getting better.  But we're all on the mend now and praying that Nick doesn't get it.  I know that I am getting better because I wanted to cook breakfast the other day.  

He was recovering after a day of being sick,
and wanted some time with his sister. 
I was on facebook early one morning  while everyone was still asleep and I came across this blog, and she happens to be one if Nick's cousins.  Well, I saw this recipe, and I got the urge to cook.  Badly.  I was planning on making the frittatas the way that she did, but I went a little overboard.  I added about half a cup of flour and half of a teaspoon of baking powder to her recipe, and baked it in my quiche plate.  That got me thinking about all of the other quiches that I've made over the past few years, and wondering why I had stopped making them.  Eggs didn't really seem appealing when I was pregnant with Mimi, and I'm having some trouble remembering that I like them.  

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

A Short Video

Here is some cuteness to brighten your day. 

Sunday, February 24, 2013

The second week.

I was all set to write a post about how good I've been doing and keeping my Lenten sacrifices and such.  But it didn't happen.  I was good the first week and even exercised every day. But then,  for some unknown reason, I stopped. 

And just as I was starting to get back into the routine Thing Two and I got the flu.  Nick took the day off from work to take care of us,  cleaned up after everyone,  and he took Thing One and Mimi out so we could rest.  He has been truly wonderful about the whole thing. 

The kids and I missed Mass this morning because, while we are better now,  we are still not ready to go out.  But tomorrow we will be all better,  and I intend to pick up my Lenten sacrifices where I left off.   There is probably something in this about mercy and hope,  but my thoughts are not organizing themselves that well right now.   So I'm going to about and watch Mimi try to figure out what to do when she gets up on her knees.  


Friday, February 22, 2013

Lavender Sugar

A few years ago I came across a recipe for Lavender cookies, and now I can't remember where it was.  One of the things that I did remember from that was how to make Lavender sugar.  I did make some last year, and used it in my tea;  it took some getting used to.  But I am still interested in making the cookies.  So I started some more Lavender sugar.  All that you do is put a few tablespoons of Lavender buds into some sugar (I think the ratio is 2-3tbsp Lavender to 1C sugar) and let it sit in a dark place for a few weeks. The longer it sits the stronger the aroma will be.  I have my Lavender in a small sachet that I made.  You can put the buds straight into the sugar, if you'd like, they are edible. 

I will post the recipe as soon as I find and make it; and I will let you know how the cookies turned out.  

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Our Lenten Challenge

I told you how we are taking the Lent to clean out EVERYTHING.  Well, I came across this article on Facebook and the title looked interesting.  That is basically what we are doing, but she said it so much better than I did (even Nick said it better on his blog).  I do like where she says that the size of the bag is not important.  I don't have 40 of the same size bags.  What's important for me is that I do get rid of something, everyday.  

That being said, I need to go look at my closet.  I know that Lent has already begun, but I challenge you to try this; to find out just how much stuff is cluttering up our lives.  

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Parenting: Don't Take It Too Much To Heart!

This is reprinted with permission from an article written in August 2012 for The Social Continuum.

I tell you, you will learn more about life and love in one year of parenting than you will learn in fifty years of living the single life.

There is no sufficient way to describe the feeling of having your beauty rest interrupted by a screaming child, nor are there words for the joy of having your three-year-old son throw himself against your leg and declare that he loves his "daddy." My wife just redecorated the walls and floor of our bathroom with morning-sickness vomit and I had to clean it up, but she also dragged two feisty boys to our rental agency to pay the bill because I was too busy to do it myself. My children draw with chalk on the sidewalk, then decide it will be cute to walk through it with bare feet. But my older son figured out on his own how to draw a stick figure.

As I write this, both of my sons are sleeping peacefully in the room behind me, looking so adorable that it hurts.

As I said, I can't really express in words just how much I have learnt about life and love through parenting. And of course, I shall be cliche and say that there is always more to learn and that four years as a parent is comparatively small. But I must share with you all a little something that I learned over the past three months, about being a parent but also about being a child. I found it surprising and maybe even a little harsh, but true nonetheless.

My observation is this: of course there are parents who neglect their children and deadbeat dads and some deadbeat mothers. But of the parents who actually give a crap about what happens to their children, I have noticed that many of them take their role way too seriously.

It may sound counter-intuitive, but it seems the more I obsess about my children's future and consciously instilling certain values and habits in my children, the less effect it seems to have. It seems like I have the most effect as a parent when I just sit down on the floor and give a damn about them enough to play with them. Children, I realize more and more, are simply sponges that soak up love as fast as it is squirted at them. And like a sponge, when they are squeezed (and tickled) they tend to leak it back out again.

The real reason I say to not take parenting too seriously, though, is because I now can say I know how it feels to be hated by my child, at least temporarily. I have been hit by both my sons before because they didn't agree with whatever I was doing for them as a parent. They have both yelled at me. And I have done my share of losing my temper back at them. But I found that when I let their temporary hatred roll off my back and let the child cool down, then something special happens. That something is an understanding of sorts, that they don't really hate you, and that you are not really as angry as you thought you were.

Maybe this post is rambling a bit, but I have been suffering from a severe lack of sleep, an overdose of my job, and the looming prospect of an unborn child who was due yesterday. I hope this is an encouragement to those parents out there who give a care about their kids and yet lose sleep over those same kids' development and future. I am beginning to understand both those concerns.

Don't sweat it, you are all probably better parents than you think you are. However, it never hurts to try even harder. The next time it's a choice between washing dishes and playing with the kids, play with the kids. Those moments are when you are building up emotional capital to draw on when the time to discipline comes. You'll probably both be grateful for it later.

Be Aware, and have fun.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

The Beginning of Lent

I'm ashamed to say it, but we began Lent by taking down our Christmas tree. We had taken the decorations down a few weeks ago but we hadn't gotten around to putting the tree away. I figured that that would be a good say to start Lent. 

And then I got out a box for the things that we will donate after all of our cleaning.  I also started going through the storage closet and putting stuff on the box.  I came to the realization that in addition to having a shoe fetish I may also have a coat fetish. I put half of what I had had into the box, and it still feels like I have too many. But I like the ones that are still hanging there. 

After that I fixed the lamp in the boys room.  In the past few years they had managed to break it (although it still works), and I was never fond of the design.  So these are the before and after pictures.

We'll have more on what we're doing as the season progresses.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

New Store, New Items!

I wrote a few weeks ago that Nick and I have opened a new store on Etsy.  This week we had some new items go up for sale (and we have a few more coming), and I thought I'd share them with you.  

In the Jewelry section of the shop we now have two jewelry trees, and a birds nest pendant.  I really like the bird nest pendants, and when Mimi was born I made one for myself.  The one we have for sale here is styled off of that one (which the boys have now lost); it has three pearl "eggs" set with brown and gold beads in a copper wire nest.  

And we are pleased to add an Art section to our store!  We are featuring two small original watercolor paintings done by one of Nick's brothers.  I love them, and have plans to get him to do a few for me when Nick and I get our dream house.  

And Nick has finished another wood-craft project, and taken a few photos of it--they are stunning!  I'm not going to tell you much more about that one, other than that some of the pictures were taken in a dark room.  We need to get a few pictures in full light, and then you will see it.  

That's all for now, and hopefully I'll be able to write more next week.  

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Again and Again, and Again

I have figured it out, again.  The children need my attention for at least twenty hours of the day.  Two weeks ago I wrote that Thing One had had a growing-up victory;  since then he had refused to repeat this victory.  That resulted in too many spankings and more laundry.  Then I spent a day playing with him and suddenly this growing-up thing was easy to do. 

 Sometimes I wonder how many times I need to be told this before I will get it.  And sometimes I wonder what's wrong with me. Other times I wonder if I'm sick.   Then, last night I read this article, "A Meditation on the Shocking Idea That Maybe We're Not Just Lazy Whiners" on Conversion Diary.  Like most women, it hit me pretty hard.  I didn't start crying about it until this morning, when I had a chance to talk to Nick about it.  That's when I remembered that, on top of the depression, I do have Thyroid problems (that brings fatigue and irritable-ness).