Thursday, August 27, 2009

Things I Love Thursday

  • Playing Scrabble on my iPhone against the computer. I don't have to wait more than 3 seconds for it to be MY turn again. Awesome.
  • Listening to Piper "read" a book to herself. Hilarious.
  • Bed-head:
  • Catching up with an "old" friend. Mr. Mater, I miss you!
  • The prospect of having a "Girls' Night" tonight with my neighborhood bookclub. (This month's book does NOT make this list!)
  • My new goldfish stamp:
  • Big Brother's Jeff and Jordan. Yes, I watch the show. Yes, it's embarrassing to admit.
  • This clip from my favorite comedy troupe "Man Stroke Woman."
  • Our first family camping trip to Indian Henry Campground with 3 other families. It was only one night be we had a great time and the girls did great!
  • Eating like this while camping in the woods: grilled New York's, baked potatoes with all the toppings, braised brussel sprouts, creamy horseradish, fire-grilled corn-on-the-cob (not pictured--it was on my second plate), my mom's famous (yep--famous) salad, and a nice plastic wine glass with excellent Cabernet. Yummy!
  • The children's book we just checked out from the library, I Love My Pirate Papa by Laura Leuck. Great illustrations and an entertaining story to boot (Haha... get it? Boot... Nevermind!).
  • This acoustic version of the song I'm currently obsessed with: CLICK THIS. Glasvegas, "Geraldine."
  • Spending a morning at Central Park in Santa Clara with Tasha and Talon. Seriously, having our kids play together is so freakin' fantastic. Miss you Tashie--come visit us!
  • My new phrase: "sUriously" [sic]. Say it in a funny voice with a heavy emphasis on the "ur" sound. It's fun. Really. It's fun.
  • This blog: She's my kinda funny!
And here is something I absolutely ADORE:
  • Meeting the Pearson twins, Taylor and Jakob who came into the world early and have been lighting it up with sunshine and sweetness ever since!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Babies! Babies!

Obviously, if you've been paying attention, you might have noticed how I have not been keeping up very well with my blog. *sigh*
I have been busy... with some other stuff.
In preparation for my "double baby shower California road-trip weekend," I made several crafty little items to gift to the mommies-to-be.
For Leslie, who is having a baby girl these onesies:

Baby Girl Barron is expected in a few weeks and the little peach has no name yet. In my futile attempt to convince her parents to name her "Apple" (this is Leslie's maiden name--sweet), I made this one special:
Of course, she got some stationary too.

Her sweet nursery is in purples, pinks, butterflies, and dragonflies.
The shower was so much fun. The food was homemade; the decorations were complimentary of the nursery theme; the weather was fantastic; and the company was terrific. Here's a picture of Shakay, Leslie and me (representing Jenkins Hall Sacramento State, 1993--y'all!).

Kerri did an amazing job with all of the shower details. Seeing this picture of the three of us together brings back a TON of much less-innocent events!

It was especially fun to celebrate both bellies at the same time!

Mr. Barron made a guest appearance at the shower and it was great to see him too!

Leslie's shower was Saturday. Jenn's shower was Sunday. Of course I had to make some special treats for my new nephew-to-be!
Here's the stationary I made:

That little Monkeyboy is gonna be soo sweet!

Jenn's theme was safari-inspired. What is the difference between "safari" and "jungle" by the way?
These are a "rip off" of an idea I came across online... I think mine turned out much cuter. (They're "Helpful Hint" cards that shower guests fill out for the Momma and Dad to-be.)

Here are the bookplates I made.

And the onesies...
My mom did a great job with the decor.

The three of us got to visit for another whole day!

These shower favors turned out so sweet!

And the pre-made food (Come on folks! I drove 12 hours each way to get there!) was mostly delicious. However, I do NOT recommend the "Loaded Potato Salad" from Costco--*ugh*!

Here is my gorgeous, glowing cousin!

Jenn and Leslie, thank you for letting me be a part of your baby celebrations! You are both going to be amazing mothers!

Friday, August 21, 2009

One of "Those" Days

Geneva and I had an episode today.
It was public--in a place I visit often and will have to return.
She went ballistic.
I was mortified.
There was hitting...
It was on her part, though I was so close...
I managed to get her to the car (and Piper too).
I called Greg and broke down.
She didn't stop screaming the whole way home.
My adorable husband talked me down from the ledge.
I turned up the radio.
Piper in the house with a snack.
Geneva remained in the car for several more minutes.
I was letting her in on the plan and explaining what was going to happen if she hit, kicked, or pinched me again.
Once we understood each other I took her from the car and put her in bed.
She told me she hated me and started screaming for her lunch.
Two minutes later she fell silent.
Two and a half hours later, I had stopped asking myself how I had failed so completely and a fully-rested Geneva emerged from her bedroom.
We survived.

And yes, she is dealing well with her consequences... so far.

She also wrote this song to remind me, I think, that maybe I'm not such a failure at this after all.
If you're concerned you can't understand what she's singing about... stop. She's not singing most of it in English. I'm not sure what language it is.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Things I Love Thursday

  • Looking forward to celebrating my cousin Jenn's first baby shower next weekend! A baby boy is on the way!
  • Big girls on their way to a day of summer camp:
  • This song from Green Day (CLICK HERE). The site may take a minute to fully download... be patient! It's worth the wait!
  • Four lovely ladies in the tub. Believe me, after 20 shots and lots of shouting for them to look at the camera--this is the best one! I think it might be near impossible to get four little monkeys to look up at the same time.
  • These amazing boots I drooled over in the new Anthropologie catalog. Yummy!
  • Having a girl's night out with some friends last night. The view from Departure (The Nines Hotel rooftop bar) wasn't too shabby either!
  • Sharing:
  • Catching up with my friend Judy this morning online. Good friends are priceless!
  • This blog post I read today... too funny!
  • Cupcakes. And I'm not the only one who loves cupcakes:
  • A book I just finished called, The Help by Kathryn Stockett. Seriously great!!!
  • The new thing Geneva is doing (mostly at bedtime and naptime) where she goes through the motions of pretending to unlock, unzip, and "open" her heart before she hugs me. Because that way her love (which typically is a different color every time, she's explained) can "flow into my heart" better. Too sweet! By the way, tonight I was informed that her love was purple sparkles. That's cool.
  • The following video which I think illustrates so well patience, cooperation, style, beauty and especially grace. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

TCC Member-Guest (Part IV)

We had an unbelievably enjoyable time vacationing with the Bills Family a couple weeks ago. The event that set the whole trip in motion was the Tualatin Country Club Mens' Member-Guest Golf Tournament. Greg invited Rusty to play and we built our vacation around the tournament.
The guys teed off on Thursday morning and had an awful day of golf in hand with an amazing day on the course in the sunshine and booze. I ended up picking up the fellas on Thursday night at 9:30 pm (they had teed off at 7:30 am).
Friday was a late start. They got to sleep in (thank goodness) and they left for the course at 10 am. Staci and I had a couple sitters to the house for the four Monkeygirls and we joined the guys at the Club for a cocktail/buffet dinner/dance.
The first activity on Friday night was the "Horse Race."
Staci and I climbed aboard the guys' cart along with about 20 other couples and headed out to start one of four holes to be played. We had a drink cart following close behind and the fun was just beginning!
The guys didn't play all that well; but the event was a blast!
Here is a shot of just the players surrounding the first green. You should have seen the cart brigade as it went from the tee box, along the fairway, and approach the green. It was something else!
Here's the fellas enjoying a quiet moment (how romantic).
And of course, the ever-popular: Self Portrait of Staci and I!
The evening rounded out with a Hawaiian buffet dinner, open bar and DJ--poolside. The highlight may have been when my friend Jodi's husband took the bet and jumped in the pool in his underwear. Those Country Club folks are so CRAZY!
Saturday the boys teed off early, played their round and came home for naps. The sitters arrived about 5:30 pm and we headed back to the Club for a more formal dinner/dance.
The evening was very warm, but we ventured out to the deck for the view and some "prom pictures" before the sun set.
Rusty and Staci just celebrated their 12 year wedding anniversary!
The dinner was amazing and the sushi spread was the best part!
We met Kelly and Andy a few weeks ago when we had the kids out at the pool. We were sure to hook up with them again for the festivities and they were so much fun...
By the end of the evening everyone's feet were killin' them!
The highlight this night was when the band member fell over the amplifier in her drunken stupor.... Oh wait, that wasn't a band member--that was a member's wife who was so drunk she thought she was in the band and proceeded to hog the microphones and belt out every song they performed the entire evening.
Like I said, those Country Club folks are CRAZY!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

My Crop!

Who knew growing a little backyard garden could be so fun? Though I admit feeling slightly "put out" every once in awhile, after a very long day, to head out to the yard for 20 minutes of watering... Once I get started on my veggies and flowers, the watering really becomes "zen" for me.
So, from our humble beginnings:
We got started with some cucumber blossoms which quickly took on the appearance of little pickled gherkins (which always gets me thinking about my Grandpa).
It only takes a couple days for the little 3 inch "nub" to become a full-fledged cucumber! This plant has gotten HUGE. When the lettuce bolted I pulled it all up to make more room for the cucumber vine. This was the "green light" the cucumber had been waiting for! Good thing we like cucumber.
Spicy Thai Cucumber Salad
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp water
(mix until well-blended)
2 cucumbers, halved and sliced thin
1/2 small yellow onion, diced fine
10 fresh mint leaves, chopped
1 teaspoon ground chili paste
6 fresh cilantro sprigs, chopped
(toss with dressing and chill for at least 30 minutes)
top with:
2 tbsp chopped roasted peanuts

We are almost ready to pick our first Winter Squash. This one is the biggest of the 4 on the vine so far.

The other night we made it out to the farmers' market in our tiny downtown and picked up some Walla Walla onions. Once we got the kids in bed, I gathered a few things from the garden and put together a veggie saute over brown rice.
I used the rosemary,

some zucchini,

a yellow squash,

and that's oregano across the pile.
It was so good! Of course, I forgot to take a picture of the dish before we gobbled it all up!

It seems the tomatoes and the peas took their time making appearances in the garden. Oh, the red peppers have yet to make a decent showing as well (but I planted them WAY too close to that damn cucumber and they are fighting for their share of sunlight).
The cherries were the first to arrive.

Slowly, but surely, they are ripening...

with more than 40 little tomatoes (and big ones too) on the three plants I have going, I'm concerned that they're all going to ripen within the same week! Good thing I have some great recipes for bruschetta, salsa, tomato-feta salad, etc.!

We might get our first big tomatoes by this weekend! I hope they're half as sweet as the ones my Grandpa grows!

The beans have arrived (as I've posted earlier) and we're having a lot of fun snacking on them in the backyard.

Here's a little mini-harvest I plucked a few nights ago just before the girls' dinnertime.

And just so y'all can be sure I'm "keeping it real," here is that same harvest along side fully-processed chicken nuggets!
Bon Appetite!