Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Man Sale

Driving down the road a few days ago, I craned my neck to see where the Man Sale was because of the utter absurdity! With a big block-lettered scrawl and a painted arrow, the sign pointed west. All of this came complete on a large piece of wood stacked up on the sidewalk. Now, I have no reason whatsoever to attend a Man Sale, but I am definitely interested in what would be sold at one. Maybe it's for single ladies to come shop at their own pace for a husband. Honestly, I don't know what else a Man Sale would be for! Surely if it was for men's clothing or something of that nature, the sign would say so. Nope. It was "Man Sale" alone on that sign. Hmm. Strange but true around these parts.

What a gloomy and drear day. Where is that sun?! It's on these days when I feel that singing a song that might actually bring that sunshine back on out.

We are going out! Too much gloom outside, so we are taking a few moments to enjoy family time as we run errands and check out the local Mug 'n Bun! Tasty, yet terribly fattening burgers...we'll eat one for ya'll...

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Homemaking at Home

Spring must be the time for me to get in gear for creating raw/homemade stuff, because I have seriously been wiping my brow as I knock out my internal I-want-to-create-oh-so-many-new-homemade-things-list! For instance, there is the new home spa I began. I decided to call it Terebinth Spa (another name for the common oak.) Isaiah 61:3 was my inspiration and I am thankful to partner with God in this endeavor! (What I mean is, I haven't a clue as to what I am doing with this whole spa thing, but I am listening to God one step at a time.) Check out my spa blog at http://www.terebinthspa.blogspot.com/. Other recent creations include my "Villa Villepatchouli Hair Tonic" (drawing from one of my favorite characters, Pippi Longstocking) and "Manly Man Shaving Soap." Let me inundate you with a few homemade recipe pictures...on the left, a foot balm disaster (the entire pot boiled over, leaving its vanilla shade behind and going for a dark chocolate brown, which means it...burned...) and on the right, the beautiful rainbowed array of the beginnings of a raw tomato-based sauce called "Italian Red."

Michael accidentally schlepped up his hair with the shaving soap today!! That was too funny. He was in a rush to leave for work, so he said it would have to do. Personally, I think it probably is fine, although I wouldn't go around telling anyone so. Hush hush.

Ever heard of Mothering magazine? This past issue features my hubby and baby in the Letters section!!! Here is the picture I sent in...duh duh duh...

It's obviously not difficult to see why I sent this darling image in. Shiloh had smiled prior to the taking of this picture (she was about 11 weeks old here), but this was the first one I caught on camera. Dripping with jog sweat, I thought, "oh, why not snap a pic before I shower?" And this is what came from my snap-happy fingers. What cuties they are!!

In college, I purchased a slightly tacky yet fashionable-at-the-time leopard-print children's camping chair duo. My thought was to save it for my future kids' use. Well, tis future time, and my daughter loves it!!

Story about this picture! When Mike and I were registering for our wedding, we wanted this huge pot to keep spare change in. We actually thought we'd save our spare change up and use it in 25 years to take a big anniversary trip. It was spent years ago. However, the pot became home to ugly cloth flowers while I shopped around for a bountifully-leaved tree. It's been almost 5 years and the cloth flowers live on. Shiloh pulls them off their plastic stems, one by one. I am actually happy about this because then I should have the motivation to finally buy a pretty tree! So in the picture, she sat on a flower and somehow, it stuck inside her diaper...I laughed out loud. She didn't seem to care it was there, even after I showed her.
She loves the chairs!! Her fondness for them makes them worthy of clashing with our red scheme in the living room.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

There's a Springtime Scrooge in Our Midst

Shiloh largely detests socks! At any moment I turn my head then zip! off she has pulled those socks again! And it seems this is often when we are about to leave the house. She must believe that socks are bad for the complexion or she may have an aversion to sweaty feet. Come to think of it, she always pulls off her dolls' socks as well. It's the old adage..."whatever I like must be what you like" (although I think that is mostly antiquated now.) As I walked into her toy room this morning, I perused the floor and spotted my childhood American Girl Doll Kirsten (anybody remember those dolls?) in the doll cradle, sockless. Shiloh the Sock Snatcher was at it again.

There are many different calibers of dark chocolate. Trader Joe's makes a good dark chocolate, but Newman's Own and I have some serious issues. Maybe it went downhill after Newman left the scene. Therefore, I am savoring a piece of the yummylicious TJ's dark chocolate as I write. Maybe one day I won't like chocolate as much. It's a long, slow process of overcoming addiction.

Since the springtime environment has been absolutely GORGEOUS as of late, Shiloh, Mike and I choose to embark on more trailside treks. A few days ago, though, I saw a few disturbing things along the trail. As we merrily plunked along, with Shiloh in the Ergo and Pearl the dog straining at the leash, I viewed several neighbors wearing winter parkas. Winter parkas?? It was like 60 degrees out!! There I am, in a short-sleeved shirt and sweating, while Mr. Neighbor mows his lawn and Mrs. Neighbor tries to catch her runaway dog in full winter gear. Including hats. I don't know what this world is coming to. Spring may not be official for a few more days, but in my opinion, it sure is here. Back to the trail. Next, I saw a sprig of...is that a sprig of (fake) mistletoe?? Yes, folks, it truly was. And it was stuck in a horrendous gash from the side of the tree. I think it was the Springtime Scrooge. There is no need for mistletoe in the springtime!! It got even stranger when we returned home. In the yard, there was a bristly (fake) limb from a Christmas tree. The Springtime Scrooge must know where I live.

Dogs have this innate sense of smell that amazes young and old alike. Without fail (except maybe once), every time I open some package of beef or cook some bacon or what-have-you...and I mean the very second it hits the air...Pearl the dog is suddenly my best bud!! Or, if she is outside, she begins barking her little furry head to no avail. And while I'm thinking of funny things, Shiloh began this new drama piece that is one you've gotta see. She sits down, flings her arms out wide, throws her head back, smiles, and then projects her body toward the floor.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Socrates Jr.

Is it only I who missed the visit of the great philosopher's progeny at the trail near my house recently? Shiloh and I were on a looooong walk together today. As we walked over the bridge shielding us from the stanky sewage waters, I stumbled upon sage words from Socrates Jr. written on the bridges's rails: "People used to drink from these waters." Hmmm, thank you for the reminder. I'm glad I had a healthy swig of water before I left my house. Otherwise, I think I may have quenched my thirst with a bit of diseased creeky aqua. I have a high regard for the peoples of yore, especially those who partook of the flowing fountains of crawfish-laden creek beds.

More on bridges, now that I'm thinking of them. Mike wrote a song called "Building Bridges" about restoration with someone close to him. He has yet to add it to his myspace page, but I think he's working on recording it. Here is his music myspace page if you have a hankering for some redemptive rock: http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=277139803
He is a fabulous author, singer, and sound engineer all rolled into one musician. And no, I am not biased!

On our way back home after the park, we crossed paths with Socrates Jr.'s red Sharpie graffitied wisdom once again. "Why are you here?" it read. What am I supposed to respond? And to whom? Maybe there will soon be a Creekside Counselor with which to exchange oodles more penetrating thoughts for the day.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Gorilla Munch or Bunny Crunch?

What's your inner cereal child? Do you think you're more of a Gorilla Munch or a Bunny Crunch type of person? Sorry, no quiz to help you find out. Just some cold hard facts and bright pics. Gorilla Munch mirrors the kid-tested, mother-approved golden oldie Kix, while Bunny Crunch mixes a taste of honeyed Smacks with a more healthy, rather yummier option of other grains. Today, I opted for Bunny Crunch. Shiloh didn't pick Gorilla Munch, but that's what she got. She likes it, though. This morning is one that I was not ready to greet yet. I couldn't sleep well last night (might have something to do with the fact that I went to bed at 2:30 a.m.) and was awakened promptly at 7:39 a.m. I also nursed every hour/two hours throughout the (very short) night. Yeah, so it's a cereal morning. No special breakfasts of vegan pancakes or steel-cut oats or even pre-cooked chicken sausage. Although, I do have a super-good-for-me-half-of-a-smoothie awaiting me in the fridge from yesterday, so I can always have that, too. In my sleep-deprived state this gray morn, on one hand I am very thankful to be so loved that my baby cannot stand a moment apart from me. On the other side of the script...Michael gets to sleep because he's sick!! 'Tis true that once a woman has a baby, sleep is a blessed commodity. Maybe someday, out there, I'll get sleep all the night through. But I'll have a twinge of sadness, for within that means that my baby will not need to nurse through the night as she has done for the last 9 1/2 months for every night. If you're a lady, you are probably familiar with ambivalent emotions for at least part of your time on this globe.

Back to Bunny Crunch. Sounds like Health.com had a pretty rough time swallowing--literally--Bunny Crunch Honey. Check out their review: http://eating.health.com/2008/09/11/annies-bunny-crunch-honey/ Personally, I think it's closer to the high end of Delicious. Health.com's reviewers must be too far removed from their bunny friends in nature, because they were rather scathing in their write-up. I feel this need to defend the cereal to all! Yeah, I have to be sleep-deprived when I become the cereal cause champion.

Shiloh just left half-munched Gorilla Munch on my shirt when she wiped her nose on me. Any moms out there relate? And how is it that I can nurse, type with my left hand (when I'm right-handed even) and sing her songs all at the same time? How is that for left brain-ness?

And for all my ranting! Shiloh just smiled her winning big-cheeked smile at me. God must have made Shiloh so uber-cute so that even in my weariness and busyness of this early dawn, I cannot help but smile back. Thank You, LORD!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Sausage Smile

Hungry for breakfast?

Remember when I told you about Shiloh's birth? Well, I birthed her in a birthing tub in our living room and my husband caught her! He said she was a bit slippery; our midwife said it was called the vernix covering. After he passed her to me and I held her close and we nuzzled a minute, she gripped the necklace I had on with such a grip.

Speaking of strong grips! Lately, she hates diaper changes. She holds onto the sides of the changing table with an unholy passion...sad, too, since at one time it was a better time for her. Cooed, smiled, giggled, the whole deal...now, she mostly cries or at least sniffles. This started once she began having more solid food. I think it must be hard to...how can I say this lightly...pass it on. I don't recall having difficulty with that as a baby, so it may not be genetic; however, I don't remember a whole lot from being a baby, either. Go figure.

From my kitchen to yours: I made "Tangy Italian Flax Crackers" (check out http://www.aboverubies.org/ to order your very own raw food un-cookbook called Rejuvenate Your Life if you have a hankering to eat more raw-ly) and "Fantastic Falafels" yesterday. The falafels and my husband are not going to get along. He said it was the raw garlic. I like the smell of the stuff, but I'm not sure what I'm going to eat with it just yet. Maybe tacos? Anyhow, I also sprouted quinoa recently, which is incredibly easy to do and also very tasty. Salads have become a new phenomenon in this house because of those little quinoa sprouts, along with soaked sunflower seeds and sprouted chick peas. Don't forget to add goat cheese. A salad takes on a new flavor with some goat cheese. And ensure it's fresh, because old goat cheese tastes like curdled, well, goat cheese. And, sunflower seeds are much, much easier to munch on once they've been in a nice bath for a few hours. I think I dunked mine for 4-5 hours.

Fun With Dick and Jane is a spoofy, funny movie that Mike laughs his curly fro off the whole way through. It was on clearance today at Target, so I grabbed it as I purchased other necessities. He is watching it now and commenting and snickering as I write, and this makes my writing feel a little disjointed but somehow more...worthy. I love when Dick (who, along with his wife Jane, resorts to stealing when his company rips up his reputation by handing him a sinking vp job) in a mad, mad dash for sanity, burglarizes all of the neighbors' lawns so they'd have their well-manicured lawn back. It's ugly and patchy and his across-the-street neighbor gives him an odd look about the empty spot of grass in his yard, but then scurries inside when Dick gives him the EYEBALL. If you haven't seen it I hope I didn't spoil that scene for you.

We volunteer at a food pantry that's in a local church every Wednesday morning. It just happened slowly...we can always use help with the grocery bill. We heard tell of this church, went once as volunteers, and now it's a weekly family event! And oh yes, they give out free organic food!! Besides volunteering, we go through the food line and I've been so thankful for God and His provision in this way! They have bulk food items, too, like flax seeds, oats, rye berries and then rare items like dates, tabouli and coconut oil (which I snatched up like a sweet popsicle on a hot summer day for my homemade spa stuff I make!!) The food is so wonderful. Even more wonderful, though, are the people that we meet and get to talk with. I am beginning to remember some of their names and more of their faces. My friend Sarah's kids sometimes stay with us a few days before and after. They represent their family and get loads of food for their 9-soon-to-be-10-person family. That makes it even more fun. I get to load up fresh bagels in paper bags for the customers (is that the appropriate word--customers?), carrying the baby in the Ergo, and saying "please don't run back here" to my friend's kids all at the same time. I love it.