Friday, October 30, 2009

Sweet Sailing on the Sea of Dreams

"Wynken, Blynken, and Nod"

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod, one night sailed off in a wooden shoe;
Sailed off on a river of crystal light into a sea of dew.
"Where are you going and what do you wish?" the old moon asked the three.
"We've come to fish for the herring fish that live in this beautiful sea.
Nets of silver and gold have we," said Wynken, Blynken, and Nod.

The old moon laughed and sang a song as they rocked in the wooden shoe.
And the wind that sped them all night long ruffled the waves of dew.
Now the little stars are the herring fish that live in that beautiful sea;
"Cast your nets wherever you wish never afraid are we!"
So cried the stars to the fishermen three - Wynken, Blynken, and Nod.

So all night long their nets they threw to the stars in the twinkling foam.
'Til down from the skies came the wooden shoe bringing the fisherman home.
'Twas all so pretty a sail it seemed as if it could not be.
Some folks say 'twas a dream they dreamed of sailing that misty sea.
But I shall name you the fisherman three - Wynken, Blynken, and Nod.

Now Wynken and Blynken are two little eyes and Nod is a little head.
And the wooden shoe that sailed the skies is a wee one's trundle bed.
So close your eyes while mother sings of the wonderful sights that be.
And you shall see those beautiful things as you sail on the misty sea,
Where the old shoe rocked the fishermen three - Wynken, Blynken, and Nod.

~by Eugene Field (published on March 9, 1889).
I think I'll memorize this so I can recite it to Éowyn when she's a little older and getting tucked into bed. =D

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Mama's Sailor Doll Baby

She looked like such a perfect baby doll tonight while I was changing her... and then I got the idea to stick a sailor cap on her and see how she liked it. Maybe she'll be a sailor like her Poppy?

Blog Ideas

So I've been thinking about how better to utilize this blog... right now it's a mishmash of posts about my child, home-making tips, good quotes, educational information, reviews of books/other media, and my own opinions of Scriptural interpretations, politics, child-rearing, and a whole host of other topics. A reader really has no idea what to expect, and could easily be bored with the discussion of children's literature ("just tell me about your latest trip!") or get sick of photos of my darling daughter and handsome husband ("all right already-why are you boring us with the details of your piddly little life?"). I've got a few ideas about how to format the blog-- either a daily categorical emphasis (ex. "Homemaking on Mondays," "Media Reviews on Wednesdays," "Family Update on Thursday," etc.) or a topical daily emphasis (topics like History, Nutrition, Missions, our Nation) with my own views mixed with articles and/or quotes from others.

What do y'all think? Which should I do?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

One Month Old!

I took Eowyn in for her 1-month well-baby visit (what my mom always called a "check-up") this morning, and her doctor said she's looking great!

Weight: 10 lbs, 6 oz-- 90%tile-- she's gained an average of about 1.25 oz a day since we brought her home. [That's so wack when you think of what percentage of her body weight that is! That'd be like a 130 lb-person gaining over 1 lb a day!... wow I can't believe I just calculated that out. And my dad wasn't even making me!]

22" -- 75%tile

came home from the hospital (2 days old), gone to church (9 days old), lost her bellybutton (3 weeks 1 day old), first bath (3 weeks 3 days), had her first baby-sitting (4 weeks 1 day old)

Skills: eating, crying (she gets her point across!), holding head up (especially when having an acid-reflux attack), following an object with her eyes, grasping & tugging, turning head from side to side while on tummy (she tries to roll over from her back to her stomach; it's more comfy on her belly).

What I seem to like: walks in my stroller; my warm bath (while I'm in it); being held upright (like in my Ergo carrier), sometimes with my head hanging waaaay back; being patted on the back; napping on my tummy; the taste of breastmilk; being swaddled in my fuzzy pink Swaddler or my knitted pink blanket; being facedown & bounced or patted across Mommy's knees; being held by Daddy; sleeping on Poppy's chest.

What I definitely do NOT appreciate: anyone messing with my head or arms (aka getting shirts on & off or into my carseat); burps that won't come out; being laid flat on my back; getting squirted in the face while trying to eat; having to stop eating mid-meal; getting out of the bath

What people say about me: "She is cute as a button!" "Wow! She's so observant!" "She's very strong!" "Look at those big blue eyes." "She has the family chin-dimple!" "Where did you get her headband?" and variations on "You (Mommy) have one of the prettiest babies I've ever seen."

Visitors: Poppy & Nana (Elder grandparents), (Great-) Grandpa & Grandma Presley, GB & Nina (Thompson grandparents), Daddy Ron & Mama Peggy (Thompson great-grandparents); Aunt Courtney (Elder), Tia Anna (Thompson), "Aunt" Ashlea (Davenport), "Uncle Mr. The Lyle" (Mantooth), "Uncle Mike" (Johnson), and lots of friends from church: Ben, Amanda & Eleanor Brainard; Aaron, Jenny & Jane Montgomery; "Uncle" Coshack Robinson; Hayley Wilton; Caitlyn; Randi & Isaiah Tyson; Glen & Bethany Moore; Ryan, Sarah & Brooklynn Bebee; Melanie, Noel, Ava & Calvin Hall; the entire Jim Rairick crew; "Aunt" Sina Shuey; Natasha Miesee (with Grace in utero); all the Beams; Jeff & Alexis King; Ben, Sarah & Daniel Hedrick; Tom, Joy & Kerith Lynn... all devoted fans!

Outings: Starbucks, Shelby, Central & Cherokee Parks, the St. James Ct. Art Fair, Moe's, Immanuel Baptist Church, the Downtown Post Office, Bardstown Rd., Ramsi's Cafe on the World, Care Group (@ Jim & Marlaina Rairick's house), Book Club (@ Sina Shuey's house), Sojourn's Fall Festival, the Keune twins' baby shower (@ Libbie Timmons'); Huber's Orchard & Winery (in Starlight, Indiana), KidsRGreat Pediatrics, Experience the Hands Chiropractic; Walmart, Target & Goss St. Kroger!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Cloth Diapering Report

I slowly began experimenting with cloth diapers when E was about 2 weeks old, and we fully transitioned to cloth diapering about 1 week ago. I will say that I've been very proud of Ryan's willingness to tackle it, considering he hadn't changed many disposable diapers before he became a father, much less ones with two layers and snaps. I thought I'd go ahead and report on how it was going.

The main hardships in cloth diapering a newborn are the frequency of changing needed (= need a lot of diapers) and getting them tight enough around her small frame, particularly newborn skinny legs. As her thighs fatten up it's gotten easier, but regardless right now my favorite dipes are the ones that are tight enough around her legs to prevent leaks, but not so tight around her tummy that they chafe. With that in mind,

The diapers:
-- Favorite: small g-diapers. They're a totally different system from most cloth diaper models, because they're intended as a hybrid. They have a lycra cloth "pant" that has soft-but-efficient-elastic around the legs, and double-velcro fasteners at the "waist." The little "g-pants" fit her really well and don't chafe or leave marks. They also aren't too bulky. And they've contained everything she's thrown at them, including some pretty extensive poopage. A snap-in nylon liner gets stuffed with either a disposable insert (what we used at first, when I wasn't really up to lots of laundry) or a pre-fold (what we're using now). That allows for multiple levels of waste containment, and it's super-easy to get them on & off of her since it's only one layer with no fasteners besides the waist-band.
-- Second favorites (Ryan's favorite): small Fuzzibunz or Haute Pocket pocket diapers. Like all pocket diapers, these are quick-drying (with relatively quick-drying microfiber inserts) and really soft inside. Fuzzibunz looked HUGE but they actually fit really well once her cord fell off. The nice thing about the Haute Pocket is that it has a fold-down snap so I could put it on her while she still had the stump. Like the g-diapers, these are really easy to get on & off and you can pre-load them for even quicker "pit time."
-- Least favorite: fitted diapers with Bummis Super Whisper Wraps. My aunt used a lot of fitted diapers (basically a prefold in the shape of a diaper, with velcro) so I inherited them and will use them, but I really am not such a fan. They are bulky, and because they're pre-cut I can't seem to get them really tight around her legs without being too tight at her belly. The diaper covers help correct this. When I use these, I prefer the whisper wraps with velcro vs. snaps, because I can get a snugger fit. (I've heard that these wear out quicker and come undone easier, so probably when she's a bit bigger & more mobile I'll reverse my preference) I also don't like how the velcro fasteners on the fitteds have to be "sheathed" (or else they destroy my cloth wipes in the wash) before being thrown into the diaper pail, and they are always soaking wet with pee when I do that... yuck.
-- OK: Pre-fold diapers with whisper wraps aren't bad-- sort of hard if she's yelling and wiggling, but not bad (I use snappis). But since I have g-diaper pants I tend to use them more.

The rest:
-- I've made my own dry laundry soap and so far it's worked well. I'm using a wet-diaper-pail method until Ryan hooks up our diaper-sprayer (baby gift from our Szrama parents!)-- water in a rubbermaid along with 1/4 cup of white vinegar (neutralizes the urine and keeps the poop from setting). When I wash, every 3rd or 4th day, I throw all the whole wet-pail contents into the machine, do a spin cycle, then wash it on hot with 1 1/2 T of my soap. I finish with an extra rinse cycle, w/ 1/4 c of vinegar added (gets any left overs out and acts as a fabric-softener). (the home-made detergent is also working well on our clothes. I only use 1 T and no extra cycles for them, though)
-- Then it's outside to dry-- the sun has AMAZED me at its bleaching-stains-out- power!
-- wipes: I was given lots & lots of second-hand baby towels & washclothes. I gave the excess towels away but cut the washcloths in 1/2 or 1/4s to use as wipes (the type of washcloth w/o a raised edge). I keep them in a disposable wipe container, wet through w/ water + a few drops of liquid baby wash (eventually I think I'll let a little fragrance-free soap sit in the water instead). Doing cloth wipes w/ cloth dipes is actually easier than trying to sort out disposable wipes before throwing dirties in the pail... although a few disposable wipes accidentally made it into the last load of laundry and to my surprise survived intact!?

The benefit: besides the usual cost & green perks, it's made a huge difference in her diaper rash! I'm not sure if it was the wipes or something in the disposable diapers, or maybe even complicated by something in my diet, but she had a rash from about Day 4 until I switched her to cloth. Using g-diapers (w/ disposable insert) and some Huggies all-naturals a sweet friend gave us did help a little, but it wasn't totally gone until I was using both wipes & dipes on her. I guess she has sensitive skin! :)

Family Walk

It cleared up Friday evening and was warm and colorful, so I asked Ryan if he'd like to take a walk after dinner. We realized we needed a few groceries, so decided to kill two birds with one stone and make our walk to Kroger, about 20 min. away on foot if you're going slow (which we were). It was a lovely walk, and we had a great time talking while we walked. That's what I like about walking over driving-- because you're going a lot slower & aren't encased in hurtling steel, you can focus more on the people you're with (or your surroundings) and not worry so much about the road. We got stopped by a very long train, giving Ryan, ever the proud Daddy, time to snap quite a few pictures of our little treasure. She was very awake and observant for most of the walk there, cried in the store (until I got her out & held her), and then slept on the way back. We think she likes walks, too.

Secret Thoughts

No Way, Dad.


Hint of a Smile

Not sure what this face is...

Starting to Yawn...

Finishing the Yawn!
P.S. I made the bow, and 2 others-- it was one of my lazy-day projects. I'm quite pleased with the results; they are cute, soft on her little head, and ensure that I can dress her in blue or red with impunity! No one mistakes her for a boy with a cute little bow on her head! Good thing, too, because she really looks awfully adorable in blue; it matches her eyes.

Friday, October 23, 2009

She's a Lady

So... I made this movie to immortalize my sisters & my "Girls Night Out" back in... oh wow was it 2004? For Christmas in 2003 (I think) my gift to them was a sisters-only-weekend of a night at the Poinsett Hotel, dinner and whatever else... they wanted wherever they wanted, and of course... craziness. We watched "Miss Congeniality" on my laptop and ate at Atlanta Bread Co., where we saw a mouse. That is why Anna climed on the chair... to think Nicole is getting MARRIED NOW!?? Oh well, SHE'S A LADY! =D

Bedtime Rituals

1. Get Mom to take out the stupid bow and put my pj's on.

2. Be snugly swaddled. If in a generous mood, allow them to pacify me.

3. Get sung to (Mom always at least sings "How Firm a Foundation"), rocked and patted on the back in a calming manner. Hear "Mommy loves you; Daddy loves you; but best of all, most of all, Jesus loves you!" One day I think I'll learn to say it...

4. Fall asleep, snug in my bassinet. Unless my tummy acts up. Then I will suddenly scream and put out my lip and arouse every bit of parental pity possible. Those nights aren't so fun. Thank God they're pretty rare!

Fall, Glorious Fall!

SEASON of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.

~verse 1 of John Keats' "To Autumn" ... one of my favorite poems

Huber's Orchard & Winery is The farm around here for you-pick produce. In the summer, we go for berries of all kinds, and then peaches & nectarines. I really enjoy eating seasonally, especially when we're talking local produce. In the autumn, my tummy says it's time for pumpkins & apples! As one thing I've really missed in Louisville is picking my own apples, I was THRILLED to learn that I could pick them here, too! (I sure miss Hendersonville's Apple Festival and Skytop Orchard back home, though... and the good ol' SC peaches come summertime.) The "Mothers & Others" group from church went to Huber's on Wednesday, and I went too-- my first outing with my daughter in my arms instead of in my belly.

I came late (mornings are not so good for us these days, and I wanted to get in her 10 am feeding so I wouldn't have to feed her first thing there... either in a field or in some obscure corner. Fernanda waited for me, so I went apple picking with her & her 2 darlings-- Elia & Matias. I loved getting to speak & hear some spanish with them! (Fernanda's from Ecuador)

Afterwards, we pulled out our picnic lunches & joined several other friends from church in a picnic by the lake. It was fun to watch the kids feed the ducks & geese, and make a "construction site" with the cones left nearby while we adults chatted (I'm still amazed to find myself in the latter category rather than the former, by the way).

Dozin' in the sun.
Mercifully, she had an uneventful, peaceful feeding. I think she likes picnics.

Her "being-burped" face

Next to the pumpkin cart. I bought a big one & two little ones. For now they are decorating our mantle. Eventually, they will fill our bellies as pumpkin bread, pumkin-chocolate-chip muffins, pumpkin pies, pumpkin spice lattes, and who knows what other pumpkin-y treats I can devise! And the apples are WONDERFUL-- crisp & juicy like I like 'em!
(the pink is from mine & Eowyn's birthdays... I haven't wanted to take it down, lol)

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.
Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies. putting on recording of madrigals; fall makes me think of madrigals, too... no idea why. Maybe because it reminds me of my Furman days, and Furman makes me think of vibrant dancing leaves by the lake as I walked fast to class. Always fast-- less cold that way. :) (wow... I forgot I used to SING like this! Oh, I MISS IT!!!)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

First Real Bath

I like this robe, but I'm not sure about the bath, Mom.

Hooray! I don't smell like spit-up anymore!

I can't get over how different she looks every day-- well, I notice it about every 3 days. I think it's her cheeks; they just keep getting bigger! Today when I was changing her diaper, I couldn't believe the rolls she's acheiving on her thighs, too. I definitely didn't have those when I was a baby-- I'm guessing that's Ryan's doing. :)
Actually, I think she's going through a growth spurt; yesterday and all night she wanted to eat every two hours, as opposed to her usual 3-4 hours... which meant I got about 1 hour of sleep between each feeding. Oh, well. She's sure a keeper, though!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Fall Harvest

Hooray for Autumn!! Éowyn & I have been enjoying the fall sunshine & listening to Vivaldi's Autumn (from The Four Seasons) all day.

I've been waiting for a warmer day to go and finish off the garden for the year, and today seemed to fit the bill. I bundled up my precious baby, and she took a nap outside while I picked all the tomatoes still on the vine, as it's quite unlikely any of them would reach ripeness with the nights so cold now, and the vines dying. We had SO many green tomatos! This year summer was so "late" around here that our vines weren't really bearing until now. Sad, huh. At least we did have enough to enjoy all summer.

After I'd picked all the tomatos and the peppers left, I dug up all our sweet potatos. I think I missed a few, but I won't know until I go back out and turn all the soil over-- once the tomato vines die (I can't find it in me to uproot any still-growing non-weed). I couldn't do any more today; this old girl still just ain't what she used to be! :) I seriously am getting carpal tunnel from burping this baby, lol.

I was pleased, though, with all that we DID get. With the green tomatoes I had already gathered, I tried my hand at a Green Tomato Pie. It was really good! When I told Ryan what it was, he thought I was joking. But he was a good sport and dug in (I guess he figured anything that smelled that good would taste ok smothered in vanilla ice cream). The pie tastes sort of like an apple pie, but with a tartness from the lemons that apple pie doesn't have. I also threw in a zucchini that I had lying around (I don't much like that veggie, so I have to sneak it in so they won't go bad when we have them)-- it wasn't my idea. I'll definitely make more of these! Of course I'll also fry some... I can't resist.

Green Tomato Pie

6 to 8 medium green tomatoes (I found this to be about 2 1/2-3 cups once sliced)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon (I also threw in ginger, nutmeg & allspice)
3/4 cup granulated sugar (I used brown sugar)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon butter
pastry to 9-inch 2-crust pie (I used a GF recipe)

Wash the green tomatoes well; peel and slice. In a saucepan, combine tomatoes with lemon juice, peel, salt, and cinnamon. Cook tomato mixture over low heat, stirring frequently. Combine sugar and cornstarch; stir into tomato mixture. Cook mixture until clear, stirring constantly. Add butter, remove from heat, and let stand until slightly cooled. Line a 9-inch pie plate with pastry; pour in tomato mixture. Cover with top pastry, seal edges, crimp, and cut several small slits in crust to allow steam to escape. Bake at 435° for 35 to 45 minutes, or until nicely browned. Serve warm or cooled.

True story: I KNEW there was a such thing as a green tomato pie because of my childhood love affair with Little House on the Prairie. I thought I remembered there being a scene in which Ma Ingalls made a green tomato pie which Pa thought was an apple pie. I think I remember him exclaiming "WHERE did you get apples, Caroline?!" =D Thank you, internet, for finding me a recipe.

Now I think I'll go make myself another pumpkin spice latte (decaf of course), and finish writing down my birth story before I forget it all... Maybe some day I'll post the edited version online; I've always found it inspiring and reassuring to read positive birth stories of other women!!

Article on Fats

As I've been looking more & more into nutrition since leaving college (there goes my penchant for the medical field again...), I've been drawn to the branch of nutrition based on traditional diets of "primitive" peoples. This would even include our American pioneers & Native American Indian peoples. Of course, the diet of many people throughout history has been poor, but there are lots of cultures who have historically enjoyed low heart disease, low cancer, vigourous old age, and healthy bones & teeth... then they start eating American diet (known as "SAD" --Standard American Diet), and poof! There goes their health. So we all know that the American diet ain't great, but is eating low-fat really the way to fix it? Here's an article that shows how uncertain (unlikely, even) that is as a "fix."

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Sunday, a day of firsts (again)

Her first time taking a bottle (of expressed breast milk). I've been giving her this "tummy soother" herbal solution of chamomile, fennel & ginger, and she HATES the taste... I mean really. I was thinking it was impossible to tell if it was helping because she cried so hard when I gave it to her, so it would make her spit up. NOT the idea. The bottle suggested mixing it in a bottle of milk and sneaking it in that way. So I thawed out 2 oz of my stash (yes we already have a freezer-full) and mixed the 1/2 teaspoon of medicine in it... I held my breath. Would she take a bottle? Would she taste the hated medicine? Yep, and nope! She made a face when I first put the nipple in her mouth, then tasted milk and started sucking! She downed the bottle in minutes-- by the time we got the picture, it was almost gone! So-- anyone wanting to take a night shift, we know she'll take a bottle for you! Come and get your turn! =D

Her first time living sans cordum umbilicalum (ok so I don't think that's a real latin phrase)-- she finally has a belly button!

Mom's first time making a green tomato pie. (recipe to come)

Dad's first time eating one (mine too).

All in all, quite a successful day! :)

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Hooray for Gifts by Parcel Post!

We have gotten some wonderful homemade gifts for Enna Grace in the mail lately! Wow she is one blessed little girl. I always am especially humbled by home-made gifts for her. Those not only take intention and follow-through, but also time & talent & effort! First we opened a package from Canada-- it was two absolutely beautiful white sweaters from her Canadian grandma, aka "Grandma B," aka Val's mom Judy... There were 2 cute pants in there, too, but the sweaters were what took my breath away. Then yesterday I got a little package from my old friend Sara: baby Mary Janes!! She hand-knits them and sells them from her online store, Red Owl Designs. [Plug for her: she also makes reusable, reversible coffee cozies and all sorts of other sewn wonders. If you thought I was addicted to projects, you ain't seen nothing yet. And she isn't even pregnant/"nesting"!]

I'm becoming such a fan of knitted items. Between the sweaters, bibs, burp cloths, wash-gloves, and blankets our Princess has received, and now even knit shoes, I've been able to witness firsthand how absorbant, durable, soft (and cute!) knitted stuff is. It just might be time for me to bust my own knitting needles back out... =D

Girls' Day Out

Éowyn & I had a great day with the girls today. FINALLY a sunny, crisp day! Though it has since turned windy and cold...

Around 10:45, I bundled Enna up in her Ergo carrier and we walked through the morning -sunshiny- park to our friend Libbie's house, where my friend Melissa was having a baby shower. She's the last from our "Newly-Weds' Book Study" to be pregnant, and, lo and behold, she topped us all by having TWINS! Due in December, Nathan & Noel... how fun! (Two for the pain of one sounds like a deal to me). Enna got to play with a lot of her friends-- Simeon and Eleanor as well as her almost-birthday-buddies, Harper & Grace. Ok, by play I mean get nursed while sitting next to, lol. Here we three are with our babies OUT! =D

Ashley & Harper (29 days), Natasha & Grace (9 days), Christina & Éowyn (22 days)

Then, Libbie & I took our kiddos to a local church's Fall Festival! (or as Lydia, 2 1/2, put it "Ball Besquibal") We walked there, with both babies in their carriers and a girl by the hand apiece. It was great, with pumpkin-painting, free food (hot chocolate, yum!), a boucy castle, live bluegrass music, and face painting, as well as a really cool crafts show/sale!

Then Éowyn & I walked home and did some chores.

Now we're off to pick up ingredients for a welcome-home-Daddy lunch tomorrow! We can celebrate both his & autumn's arrivals! =D

Friday, October 16, 2009

My Goal in Teaching & Mothering

"Blessed is he who can speak so as to be understood by a child! Blessed is that godly woman who so adapts herself to girlish modes of thought in her class that the truth from her heart streams into the children's hearts without obstruction or hindrance."

"If you want big-souled, large-hearted men or women, look for them among those who are much engaged among the young, bearing with their follies, and sympathizing with their weaknesses for Jesus' sake."

~C.H. Spurgeon

Thursday, October 15, 2009

It's Pumpkin Time!! **Updated**

We Szramas love us some pumpkin! It somehow just goes with the chilly wind and changing leaves. My good friend Amanda & I just got back from walking our babies around Shelby Park, and it is definitely FALL! It's been too cold and rainy the past few days to enjoy it, so we took advantage of the lack of rain, if not sunshine. I'm hoping for a sunny day soon so I can pick all the last produce from our garden (green tomatos, a few red & yellow peppers, and sweet potatoes!), and turn it all under for winter. On that note-- anyone have good recipes for green tomatoes? I love them fried, but so many of these are small green ones, so it'd be hard to fry them.

On to my initial point: pumpkins. My friend Emily just posted a link to this site, with this recipe:

Pumpkin Spice Latte
makes 1-2 servings (Em said definitely 2)
2 cups milk
2 tablespoons canned pumpkin OR 1 teaspoon of Torani Pumpkin Spice Syrup (your choice)
2 tablespoons sugar or sugar substitute - you can halve this amount
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (= mixture of ground ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg & cloves/allspice)
1-2 shots espresso (about 1/4 cup of espresso or 1/2 cup of strong brewed coffee if you don't have an espresso machine.)

Directions:In a saucepan combine milk, pumpkin and sugar and cook on medium heat, stirring, until steaming. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla and spice, transfer to a blender and process for 15 seconds until foamy. If you don't have a blender, don't worry about it - just whisk the mixture really well with a wire whisk. Pour into a large mug or two mugs. Add the espresso on top.

Optional: Top with whipped cream and sprinkle pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, or cinnamon on top.

I'm going to try this out, and if it works, I'll have two steaming mugs ready when Ryan/Daddy comes home from his business trip!! :)

Pictures of a very cute baby in her fall suit coming, as well as more PUMPKIN!!! :)


Ok, so she wasn't very happy at the moment I snapped this shot, but she really didn't hate wearing her suit, I promise. See; here she is quite content. (We were just finishing up a walk)

While Dad's Away...

...the girls will play...

... or just go to sleep :)
Reflux/screaming-wise, Eowyn did much better last night-- I think some of my new "nursing strategies" are helping, and I'm getting ruthless about burping her. Maybe the saline nose drops for her congestion, too. I did end up bringing her to bed with me at her 6 am feeding... that seems to be her hardest one every night. Anyway, we both slept fine that way until 10... she's been a little fussy but I still managed to "bathe" her (still hasn't lost her cord so can't really bathe her), re-dress her and shower myself- always an accomplishment. =D Now she's wearing the most mis-matched outfit possible, but she's dry, clean, warm & happy, so who cares!? Well, time to try and get this sleepy head to finish eating, so... ta ta!