Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Pumpkin decoration (and fail)...

Scarlett and I bought a pumpkin pie pumpkin and before roasting it and making it into delicious dessert I let her paint to her hearts content.  She made the perfect pumpkin face and I will admit I was a little sad washing it off and boiling the insides, but the first bite of diabetic approved pumpkin pie made up for any tears that I might have previously shed.


And then a week later we brought home a real jack-o-lantern pumpkin.  After days of letting the pumpkin accessorize our kitchen table and letting the excitement of carving build, Scarlett and I finally ventured into the world of icky gooey pumpkin seeds and skin to thick to penetrate.  As thrilled as Scarlett had been to pop open the top and "see the seeds" she would not go anywhere near the messy inside of the pumpkin.  She is my daughter through and through.  The gooey seeds grossed me out and only with a the assistance of a ten foot poll attached to an ice cream scoop was I able to devoid the pumpkin of its nasty innards.  We baked the seeds and left the pumpkin to rot, un-carved on the kitchen table.  Maybe next year pumpkin carving can be a dad and son tradition and Scarlett and I can paint our nails and bake a chocolate cake barefoot in the kitchen.


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Monday, October 29, 2012

Los Padres - Deception...

What a perfect season for a dinner of deception.  Our hosts planned an evening of tapas style dishes that pleased the palate using a play on words and trickery of taste.  Nothing was as it seemed and each dish kept the diners guessing until the first delicious bite.

The Menu -
The menu was laid before the guests, but still kept us guessing.  Not only was it out of order but it also teased with hopes of the items described.  We were warned that a traditional dish was not to be expected but to prepared for a deception of sight, flavor and texture with every new plate. 


Course 1 -  Cheesecake - a cake literally made from blocks of cheese.  Decorated elegantly with sweet figs, edible flowers and wrapped prosciutto.  Served with homemade french baguette, fresh honey, olives and assorted nuts. 

Cheese top to bottom:  Picandou Goat Cheese, Ptit Basque Sheep's Milk Cheese, Cashol Irish Bleu, Double Creme Brie

This course was served with a "shrimp cocktail" -  Lemon martini served with a spicy marinated tomato and lightly seasoned shrimp.


Course 2 -Nigiri - Basil leaf topped with fresh mozzarella and a thin slice of watermelon and cantaloupe (fruit topped with another type of berry/seed...but I do not remember what it was).  Served with an avocado puree. 


Course 3 -  Surf and Turf  -   Baked bone marrow topped with currants, sauteed onions, and caviar.  Served with homemade walnut bread.


Course 4 - Potato Salad -  Fresh baked potato chips and thinly sliced red onion topped with a homemade honey mustard dressing and served with a perfectly boiled egg.


Course 5 - Smoked salmon - Sous vide salmon filet presented in a smoke filled jar.  Served on a plate with creamy creme fraiche dip, capers,  and honey mustard dressing.


Course 6 - BLT  - Maple glazed bacon, homemade croutons, jalapenos, a medley of tomatoes and a sprinkle of greens all covered with a Gruyere cheese and beer broth


Course 7 - Fried egg - Cheesecake with a graham cracker crust baked in a tiny skillet and topped with a jellied mango puree.

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Course 8 - Fruit salad -  A medley of traditionally sour/bitter fruit served with a miracle fruit tablet.  This fruit tablet is found in Africa and is a unique way of turning bitter into sweet. The berry binds to the tongue’s taste buds when the fruit is consumed and acts as a sweetness inducer when it comes in contact with acids, causing bitter and sour foods to taste sweet.  The perfect way to end a deceptive dinner.


Thank you to our hosts, the Henry's, for a wonderful evening and for keeping us guessing all night long!


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Saturday, October 27, 2012

I love this girl...

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She makes me laugh on the daily and is definitely turning three in less than two months!  Some say three is more irritable and frustrating than two and with those I would have to agree.  Bring on the inevitable three year old, I am just learning how to reason and be a sneaky sneaky kid battles.   

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Friday, October 26, 2012

Baby bump update...

Since the bathroom seems to be the only time that I remember to actually take pictures of my growing belly...please ignore the trashcan in the corner and the horrible office lighting behind me and enjoy!

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Baby boy just sticks right out there.  He is a 7.6  pound (approx. according to this weeks ultrasound) ball stuck to the front of my body and I am not exactly sure how I am going to keep growing in the next couple of weeks.  I am hoping that I will continue on the trend of no stretch marks on the belly but the faint pink lines that are forming around my belly button are proving this might be a losing battle.  38 weeks and counting.

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Dear baby...

Sweet baby boy,

I am writing this letter to apologize in advance for the lack of attention your father and I have put into your arrival.  After crawling into bed last night, I turned to your dad and said, "I should really start thinking about getting ready for this baby". 

I spent most of the night fighting off small contractions.  Mostly braxton hicks, with a few uncomfortable and painful ones thrown in between.  I started thinking about the three trash bags full of clothes sitting on the floor in your sisters bedroom waiting for closet space, or the empty hospital bag in our closet.  By this time in my pregnancy with your sister her room was painted, crib was put together, blankets laid in perfect piles, clothes were clean and put away, car seat was in the car, a list of contacts printed, prepped for calling and we were ready.  She was 6 days late and even after she was born it was a month before we stepped foot into her perfectly prepared bed room.  She slept lazily beside me in a bassinet crafted by your great grandfather and usually wore the first thing we could find in the drawers.  Between the diaper changing and feeding schedule of the first month we barely got out of the house.  And this is why I write you this letter.   To tell you that we have not forgotten about your upcoming presence in our lives, and to remind you that we are still ready regardless of how unorganized it looks in your future home. 

With you, I just feel prepared.  Prepared for the late night cuddles and two hour feedings.  Prepared for the long nights awake, straining my ears to catch your tiny rhythmic breathing. Prepared for the soft coos and the cries that never end.   I don't need my bag packed and the car seat in the car to know that you are coming or to feel a sense of "preparation".  It just is and I just am. 

We are ready.  Armed this time with the knowledge that organization of the "little things" will come.  If I am pulling a new outfit out of a clothes stuffed garbage bag or putting you to sleep in a crib that is still set up as a toddler bed, you will survive.  I will survive.  So baby boy we are waiting for your arrival with open arms, a messy house and an empty hospital bag.  Please join us soon.  

We love you!
Your anxious family

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Thursday, October 18, 2012


Is going way to fast.

Got a text from my mom last night with two pictures attached.  What a difference a year makes.

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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Music in the car...

Scarlett LOVES to sing in the car.  She has her list of approved songs and if we stray away she requests something that she knows, claiming "I want my music because I can't sing to mommies".   I love this statement because I distinctly remember sitting in my parents car rolling my eyes at their song choice and whining because "I can't sing to this song".  Like mother like daughter. 


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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Dear daughter,


In four to five weeks our lives are about to change, but mostly your life is about to change.  We are expecting your brother to basically rock your world.  I know that there is no amount of conversation that can get you fully prepared for his arrival, but your dad and I still try.

You are beyond excited and talk about him constantly.  Every time you see my popped belly button you tell me that he is trying to escape, convinced that he is coming soon.  You are the only person that can comment on my "big belly" and then compare it to your small one and have it be okay.

But along with all of this excitement I keep a firm grasp on the reality,  his tiny cries in the middle of the night will wake your super sensitive ears and we will have two lively babies awake at 4 am, ready for a cuddle.  I will be busy feeding your brother and you won't understand my lack of complete focus on all things Scarlett.  I know that the words "gentle", "don't touch", "that is for your brother" and "don't put that in his mouth" are going to put you on edge and facilitate numerous fights between the two of us.  I know that you will want to constantly hold him and when I am holding him you will want me to hold you (and only you). 

We are too much alike you and I.  The past three years have been so special and there will never be another human being in my life that will have taught me as much about myself as you have.  You are stubborn and needy and so am I. You raise your voice, not to yell, but to get attention and so do I.  You are silly and completely OCD about closing doors and cupboards and so am I.  You do not like to be dirty and request immediate clean up when something falls on the table or the floor and so do I.  You can play in the sand for hours but hate that it sticks to your skin and so do I.  You are a mini mom, and for this I am both grateful and sorry.  My bad habits are yours.  A battle we will fight for the rest of our intertwined mother, daughter lives. 

But you also have a caring heart and a desire to love and keep close the things that you  hold most dear, and so do I.  With the bad we share, we also share the unbelievably good.  Every day that I get closer to delivering this little boy the more excited I get to see all of the good that will flow from your every pore.  I know that your little hands will desire to help every step of the way and your little heart will burst with love for your brother, and I CAN NOT WAIT!!!

You are so special to me sweet girl...thank you for three years of patience as I navigate the mommy world.  I look forward to a life time of ups and downs with you by my side. 

Love you forever and ever,

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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Foot fetish...

Regular feet -

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Crazy pregnancy feet -

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Yes, this has been happening for about two months...every night I think there is no way that they could get any bigger, and then, in true to this pregnancy form, they do.  I squeeze into my new size 8 shoes just to get to work and then quickly release my over sized puppies and hide them under my desk.  I am two full shoe sizes larger and fear that I will never return to my dainty 6.5.

My fingers, about a month ago, started joining in the sausage size swell club.  The joints hurt to the touch and by the end of the day being able to bend and grab is a distant memory. 

I talked to my doctor today about my swelling appendages and his response was less than ideal.  "Yep, nothing you can do.  Don't even worry about trying to put them up at night because as soon as you step back on the ground they will swell right back up.  Water retention, blah, blah, blah." 

Thoughts - four weeks left, four weeks left, four weeks left...and then I will be switching swollen feet for cracked nipples, crying baby, milk, milk and more milk and sleep deprivation, all topped off with a handful of cuddles, and meeting the most perfect little baby boy.   Motherhood is totally worth it!

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Thursday, October 4, 2012

Crazy family...

My dad turned 55...

and the rest of the family turned crazy...

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Baby girl

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Dog (and dad)

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and Scarlett might have turned into a dog at some point...anything goes when you need to finish every last drop of melted ice cream. 

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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Conversations with Scarlett...

Scarlett:  "Papa, why does Saddie (the dog) poop"
Papa: "Well, Saddie poops after she eats, do you poop after you eat?"
Scarlett: "Yes, and after mommy eats she takes her blood sugar"

From day one of this new "poke yourself 7 times a day" routine  Scarlett has been really interested in what I am doing and why I am doing it.  It has been the silver lining to the entire experience just to see her get overly excited to sprint to the bathroom after I draw blood to rip two sheets of toilet paper to stop the tiny drops from their continued flow.  Future nurse? Lets hope so.

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