Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Back in the Big City

We've taken the kids and made the pilgrimage to see family and friends down south in the big city. We survived the plane trip without any vomiting or major melt downs. Even though the DVD player ran out of batteries about 45 seconds into plane ride #1. My bad. I actually had a thought about how now that Molly was two this whole traveling thing was actually getting easier. And then I remembered. Easier, right. Just wait.

Now we are staying at my parents' house, enjoying good food and strewing toys and jars of worms in every possible nook and cranny. They are very good sports about it.

Bryce is currently way, way down south on a business trip, but will return soon. At which point we will head out on a 1600 mile road trip across the western United States to see far flung family and friends. Wish us luck.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

At Home

Porter and Molly were both born in a hospital. Two different hospitals, but my experiences were similar. Everything turned out great in the end (which is all that really matters), but there were a lot of little things that I just didn't like. My doctors and nurses have all been competent and courteous, but for this baby we decided we wanted something a bit different. So we found a midwife, and we are having the birth at home. Provided everything goes well, of course.

I haven't written about this yet, and honestly don't talk about it much in my daily life. Everyone has their opinion on home birth, which is completely understandable, but I just don't want to hear it. It's not the right thing for everyone, nor is it the holy grail of birthing experiences. But I think it's the right thing for me, and for my family, and I am truly very excited as the date approaches.

I remember how I felt after Molly was born. I was starving. And I wanted a shower. And a nap. In that order. After loving on my new baby of course. I had to wait for the 7am breakfast time in order to eat anything substantial, I showered in that lovely hospital bathroom, and then I didn't get a nap because nurses kept coming in to check on me and the baby. All of these things were well intentioned, but I can't wait to have something to eat right away, and to shower in my own bathroom, and to be able to take a nap when I'm tired because I know my mom and my husband will be here taking good care of the kids.

I am also very aware (after two births) that nothing ever goes exactly to plan where having babies is concerned. But I'm not too worried. This is a new adventure for us, but one that promises to be memorable.

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Perfect Storm

So you know when you're trying to get cook dinner and the kids are hanging off your legs and you just want them to give you a second and do something else? And then you just make it worse? Yeah.

This was going on the other night with Molly, and I thought I'd let her play in the garage. Bryce was in there working on our chicken coop (yay!), and she loves to hang around when he's working, so I got her shoes on and sent her out there. Pretty much so she could hang on his legs instead of mine. Nice, I know. My car was in the garage, and playing inside of it is another favorite past time of hers, one which I generally discourage, but whatever. I thought she'd want to work with Bryce. He thought otherwise, and let her into the car. Not realizing that I had both sets of keys inside. This isn't normal, but she'd lost one pair playing in there the other day, and I'd opted to grab the spare set instead of searching through old goldfish and fruit leather wrappers in the back seat. So after awhile, he figures out that she has, of course, locked herself inside. And asks me for the spare keys. We sort of laughed about it, because eventually she'd figure out how to unlock it and she was safe and we weren't in a hurry. And then she turned on the windshield wipers, on high speed. Porter innocently grabbed one and managed to jam it up. So this wiper is fighting itself and can't move and is likely breaking and we can't fix it from the outside. We ask Molly to pleeeeeaaaase push that little button on the door, no not that one, no farther down, no the other way, pleeeeaaaase. And she tries and misses and gets kind of annoyed and just gives up and shakes her head. Won't open the door. Doesn't really get it. We try getting angry with her. That works even better. At this point Porter's in his room and everyone is getting mad at everyone else. For this thing that's a little bit everyone's fault and really nobody's fault. And after much time, I manage to break into the car (only because I had to call a locksmith once and I saw how he did it), and the wipers are off. And Molly is out. And everything is okay. And dinner is burning and we are all mad at each other.


Luckily, we all realized soon enough that it actually was kind of funny and not a big deal. And that maybe I should clean out my car and find those missing keys.

I'm Cooking: Parsnip Risotto, with Grilled Salmon and Salad. The risotto was a nice, unusual side dish. I used dried rosemary and scaled the recipe down and still had more the enough for us. I really like parsnips, and this was a good way to use them up. Bryce and a friend of his from work liked it too, although the verdict is still out with the five and under crowd.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

27 Weeks

Just thought I'd post this since I realized yesterday that I didn't have a single picture of myself looking pregnant yet. Ah, the third child, already sadly undocumented.

Also, acid reflux. Hello, old friend. We meet again.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Porter is getting to that age where his questions are getting harder to answer. How do trees grow and why is the sky blue may not be completely simple questions, but they are unemotional and fun. Lately, I've had more of these kind...

How can people die if they have lots of people that love them?

If it's not okay to kill people, how come they shoot the bad guys?

How are they going to get the baby out of your belly?

There is a certain level of honesty without too much information that is required here, and sometimes it is hard to draw the line or even know where to start. I find that I tend to over think it too much, and really what he wants is a short explanation. He's curious about death, but he's not scared or sad about it yet like I am. It has taken me awhile to realize that taking away my emotions (and embarrassments) is the way to make these conversations better. I had been putting off the baby delivery discussion forever, and it turned out to be no big deal at all to Porter. I am pretty sure that as he gets older, the questions are going to get even more difficult. And I hope that I'm ready.

I'm Cooking: We have a lot of venison in our freezer, which is great. But I find that I can't use it exactly as I would beef, it has more flavor that can be off putting in the wrong dish. I threw something together the other night from fridge leftovers, and it turned out really tasty. Even the kids ate it (mostly). You could also use almost any vegetable here.

Venison Curry

1 pound venison steaks, cut into bite sized pieces
3 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced ginger
2 tablespoons curry powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1-2 cups crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
3 cups chopped bell pepper, carrots & broccoli
3/4 cup sour cream (or plain yogurt)
salt and pepper to taste

Toss venison with the soy sauce and marinate for an hour or more (you can skip this if you want). Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat, and brown the meat quickly in batches, making sure not to overcrowd the pan. Set aside.

Add remaining butter to pan, and saute the onion, garlic and ginger until soft. Add spices and a little salt, and cook until fragrant. Add tomatoes, cilantro and vegetables, and simmer covered until the vegetables are almost done but still crisp. You may want to add them at slightly different intervals if you have veggies with vastly different cooking times. Add sour cream (or yogurt) and venison with any juices, and simmer lightly until the meat and veggies are both cooked through. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve over rice.

Monday, January 10, 2011


breakfast with darth vader and the cow

chocolate chip oatmeal cookies

the tree house bridge


Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Difference

Tonight I put Porter to bed. We brushed teeth, I asked him if he had to pee (response - no), we had kisses and hugs and tucking in and all the usual stuff. And then he stalled. One more kiss. A glass of water. I have to pee. Um, Mom, can I ask you something? I ended up getting really annoyed and yelling and I hate it when I do that. It just ends the day on a sour note. But he pretty much always stalls and drives me insane when I put him to bed.

But when Bryce does it? He can be in and out in under a minute. No requests. No calling out from the bedroom. Just sleep. I don't understand it. We have similar methods. The routine is the same. Anyone else have this problem? Am I just that easy to manipulate and he knows it? Argh.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Not a New Year's Resolution

Yesterday I made this Chocolate Peanut Butter Cream Pie. Oh my goodness, deliciousness. It's awful for you, but so worth it.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year

Porter has always been quite fond of freezer experiments. I often find little cups full of dubious ingredients, nicely frozen and forgotten about. Usually of the milk and chili powder variety. I tend to get annoyed with this. It is a mess and a waste of food and sometimes smells bad, etc. The other day though, I found a water balloon in the freezer, quite frozen. And when we took off the rubber, it was really a very cool looking ice sculpture. The whole family stood around to admire it and we put it outside on the deck where it still sits, awaiting warmer weather.

This very minor part of our day made me think. About how I am very much that mom who shuns things messy or inconvenient, for honestly no good reason. Obviously there are limits, but a lot of times, I don't want help in the kitchen because something will turn out not perfect or a little spilled. Or instead of taking the time to show Porter how the sewing machine works, I just ask him to find something else to do, because it's easier. Or I get annoyed because there's a little milk in my freezer that wasn't there before. It really wasn't hurting anyone.

So that is my New Year's Resolution. To be a little less controlling and worried about order and a little better at fostering imagination and interest. And maybe having a little more fun.