Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Forgotten Blog: July 4th!

I can't believe I forgot to post this. Excuses? Very pregnant, chasing a 2.9 year old, high risk, super swollen, also tired and it was really hot! But we had such a fun time! Here's a little picture blog of it! We went to the California Speedway for the Carnival, Concert, shopping, and Firework show. It did start to rain right before the fireworks show. And next year, we are bringing a picnic dinner instead of 20 dollar chicken strips LOL!












Monday, August 29, 2011

Tea Pop Chop Not: Corn


I imagine there will be quite a few of these. But mistakes and failures are how we learn how not to do things again. Failures and mistakes should be shared. I always loved in the movie, Meet the Robinsons!


We'd all like to pretend we are flawless and how much easier to do that then in a blog? But I'll admit it! This is the disappointing tale of the corn:


For many weeks, Jorg and I have watched proudly as our corn shot out of the ground and grew to be 7 feet tall. It was my favorite part of my UH garden landscape. So lush and green.





Sookie would play in our mini corn field. I always thought of her as the lion in Secondhand Lion and it made me laugh. Jorg raved about the corn to everyone and swore corn was the only thing that grew in our soil so well.

Sookie in the Corn

We harvested our corn and found corn that was very disappointing. Whether we'd picked it too early or too late or the ants got it and contributed to it I don't know. I do know it broke Jorg's heart and he's sworn off growing corn ever again. But with a little studying, I think he will come around again by next spring, when the sting comes out of it.

The best looking corn
How most of the corn looked, we composted most of it.


I know that our soil conditions might have been to blame for this. Corn is from the grass family and so need soil rich in nutrients, not our sandy rocky river bed soil. It also needs to be planted in between mounds, not on top of them. Next year, we will have compost for it. Our compost pile is so rich and beautiful! That's one thing we are proud of that's hard to do wrong. We may not do it as well as it should be. I am sure there are plenty of ways to speed up the composting and I have read them but eventually it composts. Soon a years worth of dark nutrient crazy compost will be gracing our raised beds!

Though Jorg was disappointed in the quality of the corn, I convinced him to grill it and put it in the salsa he canned. The corn rehydrated in the salsa and gave it a wonderful texture.

The stalks of corn are dried pale yellow husks that remain as a reminder because they are so strongly rooted that I cannot remove them from the ground. They'll have to be dug out and chopped up for compost. Then we'll build a small raised bed and fill it with lush soil for next years eggplants, which are doing so well!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

ROFL WAFFLE!

My Guy on My Girl's Waffle Afghan

There's something magical about crocheting. Something I find magical in the people who crochet (I include knitting in too but I'm only gonna say crochet). I bonded with my sister in law and my mother in law over some yarn and hook. I felt really connected to the family when we did the Caps for Good campaign. I <3 crochet and my family. I can't wait to teach My Girl and My Guy how to crochet, so it can bring them as much joy as its brought me!

That said, there's also something magical about waffles! Its the only stitch I ever wanted to learn, it actually got me into crocheting and 9 years after starting (on and off) my crocheting journey, I did it!

I followed these 4 youtube videos because I learned better visually then anything else.









Also I wanted to mention Ravelry - a knit and crochet community. This place helps you keep track of your projects, has tons of free and pay to use patterns, some have video tutorials, they are rated for difficulty and time, and is like a social networking site for people who love knit and crochet!

My Girl with her Waffle Afghan and My Guy with his knitted blanket from his grandma watching everyone play kinect bowling!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Much Sweeter than Wine...

Rosemary, Lavender, and surprise!

Flavored honey. I love it for tea. But depending on the spice or herb you put into it, you could use it for baking (extra flavor in granola bars), sammiches (peanut butter and honey), and sore throats (on a spoon). This is actually incredibly easy to make and not a big sticky mess everywhere as you'd expect cooking with honey to be.

This recipe is from An Encyclopedia of Country Living Guide: Canning & Preserving Your Own Harvest by Carla Emery and Lorene Edwards Forkner. The recipe is called "Lavender Honey" but they say you can also use: Rose petal, sage blossom, rosemary, sweet bay, and pine.

Ingredients:

1 Cup of Honey
6 to 8 lavender stems, blossoms partially open

1. Cut the stems to fit in glass jar and place them inside.
2. Heat honey in the microwave or on the stovetop until warm and has a watery consistency.
3. Pour warm honey into jar over lavender buds and seal the jar tightly.
4. Allow to steep for several days.


Yield: 1/2 pint

Store: Room temperature (6 months)

"the lavender oil will infuse the honey with a deliciously floral scent and flavor"

I am currently steeping a 1/2 pint of lavender honey, rosemary honey, and 4 1/2 pints of CINNAMON honey. It doesn't say you can steep cinnamon sticks but its seems like it will go really well and I didn't know what else to do with the leftover cinnamon sticks since I made sangria. I'll find out in several days if its any good.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Mama Sookie's Kitten Update

Mama Sookie!
NOTE: How come there's a red eye removal tool but not a green cat eye removal tool in my photo editor! This is a call to action. I guess you just can't capture the soul of Mama Sookie!

On August 12th, Sookie gave birth to 2 little kittens. She's back to her pre-pregnancy weight... which seemed to come so easily to her and I am not jealous at all :P

Her Little ones, which I call them that because if I name them, I'll want to keep them, have their eyes open and Sookie is able to leave the room to get a break for about 10 minutes at a time. Its funny they don't call her back, she misses them and goes back.

My Girl has dubbed her Mama Sookie because that's what you call Cats with baby kittens!

Little Tigers!

These 2 cuddle so much and I use visiting them as a treat to get My Girl to do things! They opened their sweet blue eyes, mew less, purr more, and now try to chase after their Mama Sookie!

Everything's cute when it sleeps
And the cat who happily still hasn't found out about the kittens and probably thinks we gave away Sookie:

Objects in picture are larger than they appear!


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Beach Balls, Boats and Bob Marley!

Our matching Tattoos!
Okay, I didn't get Jorg to agree to a real matching tattoo. Its one of those airbrushed tattoos that lasts only for a day or a month, depending on your hygiene routine. After much begging, I got him to agree to this. We were torn between Bob Marley and Snoop dog. :-) I am still working on getting us matching real tattoos. Him relenting here is just a way to get my foot in the door :P

This weekend we went to Jorg's Company's Picnic! The weather was perfect! There was tons of rides for My Girl to go on with her friend. We dined on popcorn, chicken, prime rib, chili cheese hot dogs, and ice cream.

Relaxing under a tree with popcorn

My Girl has fallen into a deep love with plain popcorn. No salt, no butter, just pure popped corn. I am fine with that! Unfortunately, she prefers to eat it all the time since the picnic (aka popcorn free for all).
        Me: What would you like for dinner?
        My Girl: Umm... POPCORN!
        Me: You can't have popcorn for dinner, how about pollo con arroz?
        My Girl: How about *thinks for a moment* POPCORN!
        Me: *Sigh*

Dolphin tattoo!

My Girl got a dolphin tattoo! She picked it out herself! But when I washed her hands it came off and she was so sad. "My fishy... I mean my doll-fin, is gone!" (insert broken hearted face here). So we went back to the very friendly airbrush tattoo artist and got another tattoo for her. TWO DOLPHIN popeye tattoos (one on each forearm). She'd only wanted that or the cat. The cat tattoo was the size of her head so the dolphins!

Are you thinking of The Hangover?

My Guy spent most of his time asleep in the Circo Enchanted Tree Tent, That we set up next to our Grateful dead picnic blanket and chairs. I love this tent. They used to sell it at Target but I couldn't find it again. I love this tent because it reminds me of a little tree house and its great for taking to parks or the beach, any place you need shade for. Only thing is its got 10 poles and takes a little wrestling to put up but to make up for that its got a matching carrying case! Every kid that walked by wanted to play in it and I would have let them if my Guy wasn't asleep in his Moses basket another of my favorite things.

Jorg walked around with him for a short time after turning a small blanket into a makeshift hat (you always forget something when you have a newborn right? Even if you over pack and bring stuff you don't even need but might need and then you forget to bring something you need like a hat!)

The red balloon

There were games, of course. Last year, Jorg and I took 3rd place (out of like 50 teams) in the water balloon contest. This year my spine was still bruised from having a baby so its painful to jump at all so my friend stood in for me. And they came in 2nd!!! (out of like 60 teams). I guess I was holding Jorg back!

She totally won in being careful and polite!

Jorg and My Girl also played a game where the Dad lays on the ground holding 3 cups on his forehead and the kids run over to a tub of water to fill up there cups and then pour it into the cups on their dad's forehead. My Girl understood how to do it but she waited her turn at the tub and then carefully and slowly brought the cup back. And instead of pouring it all over Jorg, she super carefully (without spilling a drop) poured it into one cup. By this time the game was over.

Big Beach Ball!

After all the games and food and a few rides, we brought out the 48" beach ball for its maiden bouncing! I inflated it about 1/3 of the way (if that) before I got lightheaded. Then Jorg took over and finished it off.

Atlas Shrugged...
Then after we were done playing with it we unleashed it in the field! There was a pack of kids chasing and pushing this ball almost at all times! And when you throw this ball up in the air while kids are chasing it, they go crazy! I recommend everyone get a 48" ball and huge field!

Best toy ever!

I'm on a boat! never forget! Okay I wasn't on the boat but My Girl and her Friend were. They kept trying to stand up and dropped their ores in a lot. The lake or pond (I'm not quite sure what qualifies it to be either)... a swimming hole? But it has TONS of GIANT catfish in it. The bridge I am standing on when I took the picture was being used to catch and release catfish. The bait was pieces of hot dogs! CATfish easting hotDOGS, get it? (I am easily amused) I kinda wanted to catch one but felt too badly about having a hook ripped out of their mouth and then thrown back in. It seemed cruel. Maybe its my close bond with fish. One of my favorite pets and best was my red beta fish of 3 years, that I got in college, Sir Rupert (Roo Roo). I adored that fish so much that I may have my one and only tattoo of him.

rowing to a Lonely Island

Then it was time to pack up and go home. We were one of the first ones to get there and absolutely the last to leave. As we were putting everything away, we noticed something in the tree next to us.

Spider's town

A pair of shoes caked with dried mud. These have been here so long that there are 3 different aged spider webs on them and another fresh one with a spider. These shoes have been here so long, that nature decided, "I'm taking it back!". These shoes are very stuck on this tree by the way... might be glued on.
How you know the day was crazy fun!

Then we drove home as My Girl ate more popcorn. When suddenly the crunching stopped, I turned around and saw a sleeping girl! A FUN DAY!

A 3rd Birthday!

It was My Girl's birthday recently and with all the craziness of adjusting to a newborn it wasn't the big blow out it usually is. But next year with My Boy's 1st birthday, My Girl's 4th birthday, Nana's 100th birthday, Ghee's, Grandpa's, and Jorg's birthday all in the same weeks. It'll be a very action packed exciting time. We are going to be visiting Detroit and Canada at that time. But I'm letting my anticipation derail me.
My Girl opening gifts!



She had a fun filled day or at least from what I can remember... pregnancy and birth totally make you lose brain cells by the gallon. I was so happy for the back to schools sales. My Girl is a crayon zealot and equally so to markers but not so much with colored pencils... maybe one day. 40 cents for a 24 box of crayons! Jackpot!!! Dollar coloring books!!! Woo Hoo! It so nice that the little kids appreciate the cheap things in life. Whereas, Jorg wants an Ipad 2 for his birthday... he got socks (and he liked them).
 
Rule 1 of Crayons, Don't talk about crayons!
Last year for her birthday, she asked for a pair of dora the explorer skates! I promised her that when she could wear a helmet (at age 3), she for sure could have a pair of skates. Well, this was the year and it took forever to find her skates and they went very dora-y. But we got her some fancy pads and a Dore Helmet!
LOL smile! Ghee got hem for her!
The last thing we had her open was a book. A book most people remember from their childhoods, I'm told. Jorg looked high and low for this book! What do People do all Day? by Richard Scarry. What I remember of his books was all the animals were obese and I despised the worm with the hat... he seemed to always be in the way. But Jorg had super fond memories of this book.

Unfortunately, this book has been abridged (or fortunately). Depends on your views on it, they took out a couple stories about gender roles (Mommy asking Daddy for money) and jobs that are disliked(?) (coal mining). They even changed the pictures to get rid of stereotypical gender roles. Its know okay for a woman in the Scarry world to ride a Zamboni. LOL. I don't mind the changes and Jorg doesn't either but internet groups are blown up over this.

She had a very happy birthday! Her own cupcake and macaroni and cheese for dinner (her favorite!). Next year,  a bigger production but honestly, I was half sleep during this. My Boy isn't much for sleeping.

By the way, if you have an unabridged version of the "What do People do all Day" book by Richard Scarry , they sell on ebay for about 400-600 dollars!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Cat Farming is Hardwork

Sookie in the grass
I don't think I ever talked about the strange origins of Sookie (AKA Sookie-dilla). It was just before I got pregnant so at the beginning of October 2010. It is a cool dark night and my husband hadn't come from work yet. Me and My Girl were coloring next to the fireplace. It had a modest little fire burning in it. The doorbell rang.
Sookie jumping down from the old tree (since fallen)
I thought about not answering the door as it was late and I wasn't expecting anyone at that time. I reluctantly got up and opened the door. There was no one there but a cardboard pet carrier with the words "pet pet pet" printed all over the white box. I opened the box and was happily surprised that it wasn't like dog poop or something awful. It was a little orange tabby cat.
Who could say no to this face?
She immediately hissed and growled at me. She was so tiny I wasn't sure she was old enough to be away from her mom. I had always wanted an orange tabby cat. Like truly, I have owned almost every other kind of cat (save for Siamese -and I have no desire to- and Savannah cats -which I am saving for my golden years) but never a orange tabby. It was after I looked into her snarling eyes and fell in love that I realized my husband was gonna kill me. We had 2 cats of our own, 3 strays hanging around, and a cat that lived in our backyard and is like 100 years old. AKA TOO MANY ANIMALS! but there was no one around and she was so little and whenever I looked at her hissing face I heard the song "You are the sunshine of my life". I explained this to my husband and he was unmoved. I tried "so hard" to find her a home but I'd named her and everything so I kept her. 

She's a truly easy cat to fall in love with and she won everyone in the house over, when she stopped hissing and spitting at us.

Pregnant Sookie's backside

As I neared my due date,  we noticed she'd gotten quite plump and was with kitten(s). We have never owned a female cat and had no clue if she was old enough to get fixed yet. I guess so!


Well, 2 days ago she gave birth to her kittens! Its just amazing!
A family of ginger cats!
I am glad she only had 2 because I really do need to get homes for these lovelys. Even I am starting to feel like we have too many animals! Sookie rounded it out perfectly.

Lincoln and Scott: they would be jealous if I didn't pic them too


Friday, August 12, 2011

Baby Busy!

There's barely enough time to sleep let alone write a blog. Plus Jorg's off for paternity leave so I have to fight it out for the computer! We have done a ton of stuff and taken a ton of pictures for the blog but I haven't got around to writing them yet.


 On July 16th, I had My Boy! He's absolutely perfect. Due to circumstances beyond my control, he was a natural birth. I don't recommend it, it does hurt as much as you my suspect it does.


He's a funny little guy with tons of personality already. He grunts almost non stop and every once in a while let's out a little "LA". His eyes... I don't really know what color they are... they could be blue, hazel, brown, and some days they look like all of these. The best way I can describe them is a metallic blue gray. He laughs only in his sleep, dreaming of happier times LOL and he is a crazy good cuddler.


His sister is absolutely mad about him and we have been trying to give her some extra attention. She's picked him up a couple times and tried to put a crayon (green) in his mouth while he was crying and she is always waking him up so he can play with her LOL.

We are still working on his nursery but he mostly just spends time in his moses basket or in our arms!


 This is our complete family of 4! Sorry to disappoint anyone but there will NOT be a 3rd child. It just isn't even a physical possibility any more. Which is great because the 3rd one really will succeed in killing me. We are so happy and thankful for the 2 wonderful kids we have!