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He Is Taking Over My Blog And My House

1 Oct

Here are some pictures from the last month or two that haven’t made it onto the blog because they were not related to our trip or the piano or the crib pads. To start us off, here is Dave relaxing in the bath with his neurotic lifeguard nearby. If you come visit, be sure not to let Tom in the room when you shower because he is super annoying.

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Here are his legs after his six-month shots.

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I’m fine, really.

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I had him try on this dinosaur costume to see if there was any chance it would fit on Halloween. Nope!

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The pack ‘n’ play is back out! Seeing him play in it reminds me so much of baby Robert.

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How the mighty have fallen.

On a day with nice weather I opened the back door in our dining room and realized the neighbor’s dog has just enough space to stick his whole head between the wall and the fence. Tom was sure surprised to see a big dog head practically touching the back door. By the time I got the camera the dog had gone into its house. But Tom’s fur was still puffy!

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Peaches.

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TOTAL JOSH

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I swear this big baby dwarfs my husband.

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But Ida dwarfs him. If p then q.

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Here is one of his new bow ties from OhSweetHome. You can see Davy was in a very playful mood:

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This one reminds me of Robin.

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This one reminds me of Brain, I think. (Try to take over the world)

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Here he is ready to try green beans for the first time. I added butter and garlic and they were not great but he seemed to like them, just like his dad. Although his dad tasted these ones and thought they were terrible.

You can watch his dignified reaction:

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Pretzels and Cranberries

5 Dec

When you never have free time and energy at the same time, blogging is (apparently) one of the first things to go. In fact, here is a list of things that have fallen by the wayside:

1. blogging

2. Christie’s stocking and Robin’s blanket

3. dishes, laundry, bathrooms

4. my editing business

In case you cannot relate, let me tell you what I have observed about being 30ish weeks pregnant and 30ish pounds heavier than I’m used to and spending more waking hours standing up than sitting down: for someone who has never been whatever the opposite of sedentary is, these conditions make it REALLY HARD TO DO ANYTHING. Just ask Josh, he will verify that I mostly do nothing.

The good news is that I am quitting my job! I took a job as a store cashier shortly after realizing I was pregnant because the pay and hours were significantly better and would allow me to save about twice as much money as my bank job. I had planned to work at the store until January something, but Josh convinced me (quite easily) that quitting before Christmas would be better for many reasons. In fact, here are some of our reasons:

1. I haven’t really started any baby prep yet. Also I feel I have lost control of my messy house. Josh wants me to be able to relax and enjoy the last part of the pregnancy and feel somewhat prepared by Feb. 14 (and clean up after myself once in a while).

2. I don’t have to worry about working on Christmas Eve and every day preceding it because we are shorthanded, which would translate to not getting my shopping done and packages mailed in time.

3. The store accepted my application nearly a month ago for an open 24 hr/wk position, and then told me it might take months for it to happen because they are retards (my wording). To make things worse, I haven’t gotten a Saturday or Sunday off in a long time (except when I took leave to go to CA) which is sad because I never have a day to hang out with Joshua. Who wants Mondays and Thursdays off? Terrible. ;)

4. Plantar fasciitis. Needles and pins-uh.

5. Some People have been Getting On My Nerves. This has been getting worse the tireder I become, and is enough to make me pretty annoyed a lot of the time. It will be sad to leave nonetheless because I do like the limited social interaction with customers (introvert) and I like a lot of the people who work there.

6. Josh got a promotion!

Blah blah blah. Six reasons should be enough! The main one is that Josh said I should, and he doesn’t have any pregnancy brain affecting his way of thinking. If he wants to treat me like a delicate flower, that’s okay by this lady.

Last night after work I made a cranberry garland. I’d had Josh buy cranberries when he did the Thanksgiving shopping (I was working) and he put them in the fridge (logical), which was fine for the ones that became sauce but it might have made the ones for the garland a little weird. I have never bought fresh cranberries before but I was expecting them to be somewhat crisp and hard like a green apple, and most were more like very delicate grapes. Is that from refrigeration or just the way it goes? Anyway after a few days of resting on a cooling rack in the pantry, many were discovered to be like wooden beads or green apples or whatever and last night these ones were totally workable. The cats LOVED this activity, and have been playing with the same cranberry all around the house ever since. I ended up making a garland that was about 4 feet long (I didn’t measure) which was perfect for my counter-top Christmas tree. I think my next step will be to make those cinnamon ornaments for it, so it will have a food theme. Kitchen trees should have a food theme? I did not have any un-buttered popcorn so I went straight cran. For the big tree I might do a popcorn-cranberry one, but I might wimp out because I can see the cats knocking the tree down in the night. With any luck/momentum, right through the front window.

Cranberry garland

Cranberry garland

When we were in Texas meeting Robin, Betsy and Marcos had pretzel rolls from Costco. Josh has never forgotten how good they were, and has been talking for weeks about trying to make his own. We haven’t seen them for sale anywhere around here. After a bit of internet research, he made his first attempt (I was working):

Parboil pretzel rolls

Parboil

Bake pretzel rolls

Bake

Lovely pretzel rolls

Done!

Aren’t they perfect and adorable looking? He was disappointed that they tasted exactly like soft pretzels at the mall shaped like rolls. How do I describe the pretzel roll he was envisioning? Softer and more delicate, like a dinner roll, but with a delicious pretzel flavor. He will try again, and again if necessary. Meanwhile I love to eat them warmed up a little and dipped in mustard. :)

Quick pregnancy update: I can’t tell if I would be sore if it weren’t for my job, but that is really my only complaint. No swollen ankles or anything. Sometimes my back aches but Josh can usually fix it right up. I think I must still be in that golden age where I don’t feel sick and I don’t feel like a cow yet. The baby moves a lot, which is awesome! It makes me smile at work.

Me and Julio

8 Jul

Last week I gave notice at my bank job and next week I’ll be a government employee at the Commissary. At the bank I sit most of the day and eat snacks because I am bored, so hopefully standing around the store all day instead will be a little healthier. :)

We recently got Ida a minion, a little black boy cat to keep her busy as my work week grows from 20 hours to 32. After two very rocky days of hissing and spitting and attacking, she got used to him and started acting big sisterly, wrestling with him, bathing him, eating his kitten food and generally pushing him around. He loves her of course. He also loves Josh, and I suspect he is more Josh’s cat than mine.

Fourth of July was fun, and rather than allow it to pass unnoticed like Easter, I bought a charcoal grill and asked my husband to do the honors. We had some friends over for hamburgers, hot dogs, potato salad and baked beans, and I made a red and blue cake that Josh said was pink and turquoise. The baked beans were probably everyone’s favorite, although the cake was certainly good. I used this recipe:

Ingredients:
3lbs VanCamp’s pork & beans
1 large onion, chopped
1 small can crushed pineapple, slightly drained
1/2 cup brown sugar
3 Tablespoons steak sauce
1 Tablespoon mustard
1/3 package kielbasa, cut very small
1/2 package bacon
3/4 cup ketchup

Preheat oven to 350. Drain some of the liquid off the top of the can of beans then mix with onion, crushed pineapple, brown sugar, steak sauce, mustard, and kielbasa in a large bowl. Pour mixture into a non-stick sprayed 9×13 baking dish then lay bacon strips across the top. Spread ketchup on top of the bacon and bake for 2 hours, or until the top is deeply caramelized. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.

It was so caramelized that you couldn’t tell there was ketchup on top (relief) and the kielbasa and pineapple blended nicely into the beans for some excellent flavor. I used less kielbasa than called for (the recipe wanted a whole pound) because I did not want it to upstage the beans.

Later that night we made use of our new grill again (actually Josh did while I was napping) and cooked a steak that I had marinated the night before. Here is the best marinade ever:

Ingredients:
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1/3 c. soy sauce
1/4 c. red wine vinegar
2 T. lemon juice
1 T. Worcestershire
1 t. dry mustard
1 clove garlic
1/4 t. pepper

The steak was so juicy and flavorful after grilling, and Josh had not even added the excess marinade to it while it cooked. I thought he did, because it was soooo good. Try it, all of you. You’re welcome.

We did not go see fireworks although I had intended to. My impromptu evening nap was something of a game changer. I am just glad Josh had the prerogative to grill the steak anyway, and wake me up to have some of it. Not that he usually lacks prerogative, but imagine how grumpy I would have been to wake up at 10 p.m. to hear him say “I thought you didn’t want steak anymore because you were sleeping.” But he knows me better!

I hope all of you had a happy Fourth too. I’m sorry I don’t have any pictures!

Marshmallow World

4 Mar

March came in like a lamb. Until last night I worried that we wouldn’t get much more snow and we would have to start dealing with vast quantities of mud that were already starting to appear everywhere, but it turns out my fretfulness was premature.

It’s the time for play, it’s a whipped cream day

My husband is cleansing (in case “detoxing” gives the wrong impression) his digestive system with dandelion tea, and I have been drinking green tea to keep him company. I made 5 dozen chocolate chip cookies on Friday and ate the last one on Sunday night, probably because I left them on the coffee table all weekend because we were drinking so darn much tea.

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When I made sugar cookie bars on Valentine’s Day I stopped after whipping the butter and sugars and threw the whole thing away because it smelled weird to me. Thinking it must have been my imagination or forgetfulness of how it usually smells, I whipped more butter and sugars, ignored the smell, and made the cookies, which tasted disappointing and which I was not proud to send to work with Josh, but I was hardly going to keep them at home. Last night my Kraft macaroni and cheese had the same disappointing taste. Here’s what it is, you guys: Sam’s Club “Daily Chef” salted butter. It has a funky smell, can you believe it? And can you believe it took me weeks to make the connection? I use butter all the time.

Breakfast: A slice of toast with a perfectly poached egg on it. Josh took a breakfast burrito, which I made a few weeks ago and froze. It contains sausage, scrambled eggs and hash browns, and if you heat it up right and put salsa on it, it can be pretty good.

On the menu for lunch: Leftover spaghetti.

Dinner: Domino’s pizza. It’s delivery.

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Ida purrs and chirps at the frolicking neighbor dog.

Spicy Spaghetti

10 Feb

spaghetti

This is dinner tonight. I think I can call it an original recipe, because it is a thoughtful combination of about four recipes from the internet. I recommend it for people who don’t like chunks in their spaghetti sauce.

Aunt Emmy’s Spicy Spaghetti Sauce

Olive oil
1 lb. ground beef (optional)
1 T. garlic
26 oz. tomato sauce
6 oz. tomato paste
1 t. Worcester
2 t. red wine vinegar
1 bay leaf
1 t. oregano
2 T. sugar
2 t. dry parsley
1 t. basil
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. pepper
1+ t. red pepper flakes
1-2 c. water (optional)

Brown beef in olive oil, adding garlic near the end. Pour off excess liquid, or don’t. Add remaining ingredients. Simmer a good while. Serves six, or two people three times.

sauce

If it looks like this, you’re doing it right.

no cat

No.

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