Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wednesday update...


 I got this text today at work from Scarlett's Godmother.

"Ha, got her to drink one of our "shakes".  I didn't tell her there was squash and cucumber in it."

How true it is that the only way to get her interested in anything that is not ice cream or chocolate is to give it to her in the healthier form of ice cream or chocolate. 

Yesterday I gave her a bowl of vanilla flavored yogurt for breakfast and when Chris noticed that she was chowing it down he looked at me and said "she is killing that bowl of yogurt" I looked at him and said "I told her it was ice cream". 

Scarlett has officially been scarred for life.  Sorry Scarlett. 


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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Los Padres...

PhotobucketA childhood game I have played hundreds of times in my twenty seven years, translated into a dinner of perfect proportions and fresh ingredients. My senses where heightened in this adult only game of telephone, where wine paired perfectly with exotic sea food, fresh picked herbs and gamey meats. Ingredients ran from one dish to the next creating a continuity between courses and a quick rush to the pallet, challenging my taste buds to find the matching flavors in each enticing plate.

This was one game of telephone that I will never forget.



Some of you may remember, we're a part of a supper club.

This past Saturday began with a dinner hosted by the Smiths...

The guests... (sadly I didnt get any pictures of the hosts)

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The food...

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Double dip -
Fava bean and herb
Goat cheese and date
Homemade bread sticks

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Charred octopus -
Fava beans, cherry tomatoes, preserved lemon, mint, oregano, date gastrique

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Heirloom tomato soup-
with a stilton-parmesan chip

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Cobb Stack-
Smoked pork belly, stilton, pickled egg, heirloom tomato, candied walnuts, shallot crisps, radicchio,
napa cabbage, sherry vinaigrette

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Pan-Seared black cod -
Sauteed kalamata olives, caramelized fennel, radicchio, toasted pistachios, parsley-walnut pesto and
roasted shallot aioli

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Palate cleanser - ( I ate this one too fast to get a good picture...oops)
Cantaloupe and champagne granite

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Roulade of rooster -
Portobello pate paste, smoked potato mash, ground pistachio and cumin, orange pickled onion jus

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Flourless chocolate cake -
Orange confit, toasted cumin whipped cream

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Thank you Matt and Ashley for a spectacular evening.

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Monday, August 29, 2011

Movie Monday...

Dance party with cousins...check




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Friday, August 26, 2011

Fishy face...

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While browsing for craft ideas I came across paper plate fish...simple, easy and fun afternoon project.  I love that Scarlett is at the age where I can just let her go wild with art supplies and I dont have to hold her hand and make sure that she isn't spilling glue on the floor or writing on the walls.

What you need:
Paper plate (white or colored)
Scissors
Glue
Art supplies (markers, paint, crayons, paper, stickers)

Cut a triangle out of the plate, pacman style, take the triangle and glue the pointy side underneath the opposite side of the plate to create a tail.  Let the kids go wild decorating their fishy friends.

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Three little words...

can break my heart, calm her tears and make me smile within the seconds it takes for her to squeeze them from beneath her pacifier and whisper them into my ear .  "I want daddy" she murmurs.

Scarlett was hard to console before bedtime last night.  I gently laid her in the crib and rubbed her back till I assumed she was sufficiently soothed, only to find her eyes pop open and her mouth let out a whine as soon as the release of pressure from my palm hinted my intention of leaving the room. I placed my hand on the small of her back and rocked her little body back and forth till her eyelids drooped and her breathing slowed.  Apparently she has been practicing the "fake sleep" move before we get her out of the crib in the mornings, because the moment I was convinced she fell asleep and made my intention of tip toeing out of the room clear, she shot up, stared me straight in the eye and let the waterworks begin.  I picked her up and held her tight, telling her to take a breath, to calm down and that I was right here. She looked at me, held me tight, took out her pacifier and softly whispered "I want daddy". 

Bed time is usually my thing.  Scarlett and I have it down to a science.  Daddy comes in, we read a book, we say our prayers, we kiss goodnight, daddy leaves, she drinks her bottle and messes up my hair, I say "I love you" and kiss her forehead, lay her down in the crib, give her her baby doggy, cover her with a blanket,  tip toe out and close the door.  15 minutes of bed time routine and I am a free mommy.  Yesterday I decided Scarlett is almost two and the bottle before bed thing needs to go.  So I gave her a bottle while sitting in the living room (I figure I will slowly transition the bottle to a sippy cup), played with daddy, went to the bedroom and resumed what I assumed would be another easy night time routine.  Except that I forgot that I am the mother of an "almost" two year old and changing routines is NOT that easy.  Her world had officially been rocked and I was the one that caused the damage.

I smiled as I looked into Scarlett's tear stained face, told her I was going to lay her down and get her daddy, she said "okay" and continued to cry.  Chris came out five minutes later, leaving silence behind him.  All he had to do was talk to her, tell her he was there, calm her down, tell her that he loves her and that he would see her in the morning.  She said "okay" and drifted off to sleep.  There is a communication between Chris and Scarlett (especially during the summer months) that I will never have and on this evening there was nothing that I could say or do to comfort her, I told her all the same things, I gave her all the same comforts, but this night she knew what she wanted.  "I want Daddy" she murmured.




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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Outside lands...

I took an extended weekend and spent Thursday thru Monday at the San Francisco music festival, Outside Lands.   What a weekend.  San Francisco was a blast and the city is so full of life. 

This festival was an event that I am glad to say I had a chance to attend, but I don't think I would go back.  Three very full days of music, overwhelming crowds, greasy food, overly expensive drinks, and LOTS of walking.  I was so far out of my comfort zone, constantly missing the familiarity of Scarlett's laughter and Chris's jovial conversation or soft kisses on the forehead.  I missed waking up to a soft spoken "mama" in the morning, I missed cooking dinner together at night, and Yo Gabba Gabba before bed.  I missed the nightly fights for "more bubbles" in the bath and the whining that inevitably follows the draining of the water.  As good as the music was or as wonderful as the company of new friends proved to be there was always something missing that held me back from enjoying my time away.  I thank my new friends for making my time a good one and apologize for holding back from allowing it to be great. 

I held myself back because I realized within 24 hours of stepping foot outside my home, that I LOVE MY LIFE.  Seriously, I love being a mom.   I love going to bed a 10 oclock and feeling rested the next morning.  I love tip toeing out of my sleeping child's room at 7pm, shutting the door, looking at Chris, smiling and realizing how stupid lucky we are. It was fun to get away from the world of busy mornings, long days and quite nights, but when I step away I can't help but feel lost.  A weekend away feels like I am stepping away from who I am, from the things that I love the most in this world.  I admit the first day was a much needed "me" day, but the four days following, I lost "me" all together and felt completely disheveled . So thank you friends for baring with my selfish weekend of reflection.  As much as I love getting away, my life is at home and my heart is at home and when these things are not with me I will always be lost.

And now the only part we really care about...pictures...


These are my new found friends (aka my best friends "family")...wonderful, kind hearted people.  I hope that these are friendships that will continue even over the barrier of distance.  Thank you for welcoming me into your "family".  You made this trip one that I will truly never forget..especially the food.  Thank you for everything.
After the Arcade Fire show on the last night...AMAZING SHOW!!!
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My best friend Laleanne. Thank you Lolli for an inviting me on this trip of a lifetime.  I am so blessed to call you and friend and continue to take wild and crazy trips with you.
I really did have a great time and I am so thankful that you are a part of my life. SERIOUSLY...so thankful!!!
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Lobster hat at Fisherman's wharf
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First taste of chicken feet...not a favorite.
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Lorenzo called this a "moment" and I am glad that it was captured.  The Decemberists, a blanket, sun shine, green grass and friends.  Perfection.
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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Summertime blues...

I get so excited for summer time.  With Chris begin home I come up with millions of  plans, places to go and things to do as a family of three, yet somehow none of it ever gets done.   Our days together quickly fill with miscellaneous chores, laundry, grocery shopping, blah, blah, blah.  With School supplies now headlining in local stores and back to school commercials plaguing the television set I know our time is running short and the bittersweet feeling for the month of August starts rising to the surface.  I know that soon I will resume my job as "almost" stay at home mom and with this passing of the torch comes laundry, grocery shopping, running errands and entertaining Scarlett all day long by myself.  I have had a right hand man for the past two months and taken advantage of every minute.  So during the next three weeks I want to cram in as many bubble blowing mornings, splashing in the pool afternoons, and dance party nights as possible with my partner in crime by my side.  Who cares if we didn't get to visit every zoo within a 50 mile radius, or put Scarlett into 20 different toddler classes, we rocked this summers socks off.  Nine months till June 2012, let the unrealistic summer time list begin. 


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Monday, August 15, 2011

Movie Monday...

Last week I came home to this tiny dancer...



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Friday, August 12, 2011

Basket head...

Scarlett frequently puts things on her head (that are not hats) and walks around the house running into walls and door frames.  It is super cute...but I am also wondering, should I be worried?  Oh and sometimes Chris joins her...yep, officially worried.

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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Matching game...

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I came across this custom matching game idea here and as soon as I saw it I knew I wanted to get crafty.  Although Scarlett is still a little young to get the concept of remember where you saw it last, she loved turning the tiles over and declaring the name of the person on the other side.  I finished putting this together last night and we played with it first thing this morning.

I think I get a little more excited about my makeshift creations than she does.

Here's how I did it:

What you need:
An even number of same sized "tiles"...I used 12 wooden 3x2 rectangle plaques from Michaels
Glue
Mod Podge
Decorative paper
Pictures of family, friends, dogs, cats, etc.

Cut your decorative paper to the size of your tiles and glue.  When glue is dry, Mod Pogde over the top to seal the paper onto the tile

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Now take your photos and shrink them to the size of your tiles.  I put my pictures into a word document and shrunk them down this way.

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Glue pictures onto the backside of your tiles.  When glue is dry Mod Podge the top to seal.
Let tiles dry.  And play!!!





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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Makeshift garden...

Chris and I are starting to feel the pull towards house hunting again.  Our condo is great and we are so lucky  to live the lifestyle we want and own a really wonderful two bedroom home. But it is starting to feel like the two bedrooms, no yard, upstairs unit, a mile away from the garage lifestyle has run its course.

Good news is, I am constantly getting a work out carrying Scarlett, my purse, the diaper bag, five bags of groceries, a toy stroller and a trash bag full of crumbs, wrappers and juice boxes left on the floor of my car to our condo far, far away.  Bad news is,  I get a work out carrying all of those things to our upstairs unit, and by the time that I reach the stairs, I have yelled at Scarlett 10 times to "stop pulling my hair" or  "don't go in the pool", my fingers are usually numb from all of the junk I am carrying and my back is aching from supporting my arms.

And what is even harder than walking far, far away from the car to the house, is the lack of play space for Scarlett.  The older she gets the harder it is to keep her cooped up in the house all day.  She wants to run and play.  And I want her to run and play without worrying that she is going to fall into the pool, step on dog poop, or find hidden treasure (aka dirty gross trash) in the bushes (yes people let their dogs poop and just leave it there and throw their trash in the bushes...I have had recent day dreams of walking up to every door in the complex and yelling at them to pick up after themselves).

As much as this post is about our lack of yard and me having a tiny pity party, I really started it with the intention to discuss our recent gardening venture.  I have found ways to combat being cooped up in our tiny place, by making being cooped up fun. Any time I know I will be home with Scarlett for a significant amount of time I try to keep her active, building forts, painting, playing hide and seek, and my most recent endeavor, planting flowers.  I have killed EVERY plant that entered our house since the day we were married, so I had very little hope for the sunflowers Scarlett brought home from church two Sundays ago.  Much to my surprise, not only are the flowers still alive, they are growing taller and taller every day.  I have made such a big deal about the flowers growth with Scarlett that when she ran up to me last night yelling "look this mommy, look this", dixie cup in hand and four little sprouts obviously outgrowing their tiny home, I knew it was time to re-pot our little survivors.

I told Scarlett that the flowers have grown so tall from all of our love, water and sunshine that they need a new home.  Luckily I had cut a milk jug up last week and wasn't sure how I wanted to use it yet and realized it would make a perfect flower pot.  So off Scarlett and I went to the far, far away garage to get the soil we needed to replant our flowers.  I had so much fun starting our first little garden on our tiny patio.  Watching seeds grow to be tall stocks.  Replanting them and teaching Scarlett how to care for these little miracles.  She was sad that the pot couldn't come inside but this is just one more reason to step outdoors on a cooped up day.  Regardless of our lack of space, these will be memories that we will carry with us forever, our first makeshift garden on the patio or our yard less condo.   

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Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Tuesday update...

Scarlett is with my mom today while I am at work and Chris is busy golfing (the hard life of a teacher)...so of course I was blessed with a wonderful update of my sweet chocolate filled, "nama" spoiled, tiny tiny toddler. 

"Just back from a walk with chocolate donuts. YUMMY"

Seriously, her cuteness makes me want to run out of this building and plant a little kiss on her chocolate covered cheeks. 

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ABC quilt...

This quilt was SO much fun to make and as excited as I was to give it to my dear friend at her baby shower, I might have shed a tear or two at the idea of giving it away. 

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Every letter was hand embroidered...first time with embroidery and I LOVE IT!!!
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Monday, August 8, 2011

Movie Monday...


 Twinkle twinkle little star...Happy Monday

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Daddy's home...

Last week Chris came home from work camp and Scarlett and I wanted to make sure that his midnight homecoming was worth the day long flight.

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