Monthly Archives: January 2009

Eye Candy Friday: Week Eighteen

Umm so it has just been one of those weeks. The kind where you don’t know where the hours go.

Bean has a cold. Nothing much, just a lot and I mean A LOT of snot coming from her nose. I had no idea such a little person could produce so much mucus.

I’m definitely not a fan of sucking it out with the nasal aspirator. It’s like I’m torturing her. It breaks my heart. I have to do it though before I feed her or otherwise she can’t really breathe.

We all got a pretty crappy amount of sleep last night because of her being sick. She would fuss and stuff in her bassinet, when I pulled her into bed with us she kept getting overheated and was really restless (one of the main reasons we don’t co-sleep anymore), and she wanted to comfort nurse pretty much the whole night which is hard for me to sleep through. At about 3am I finally couldn’t take it anymore and went and got the swing from the livingroom. It worked great to get her to sleep, but I could just about kill the manufacturers because who really wants to only have their baby sleep for 30 minutes? When I turn that thing on it should just go and go and go until I decide to turn it off, in my opinion. Ugh.

Anyway, I’ll just share some pictures because that’s pretty much all I have time for being as how I leave for the weekend in 4-5 hours and I still have not packed, I’ve got at least 2 more loads of laundry to do, probably 2-3 more feedings ahead of me, etc.

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Year of the Ox

Happy Chinese New Year everyone!

We’ve been celebrating this holiday with my sister-in-law ever since Half-Pint came along. It is so much fun. We dress up and then make and eat good food shared with lots of friends. I really love that Ruth started this tradition!

Of course, Bean has to participate in the dressing up for this festivity too. I pondered many options and even coveted a few Etsy items. In the end I was good on our budget and just wound up embroidering a onesie for her to wear to the big feast next weekend. Mmmm dumplings. I can hardly wait!

The design sketched out:

Completed laterns up close (I still haven’t washed the onesie just yet to get the Crayola marker off, so you can still see it peeking out from behind the stitches here and there):

The ox (I just love this little guy!):

Bean happily modeling my needlework:

And of course she spit up all over the front of it just after these pictures to show her love most ardently. Guess that solves the marker problem. 🙂

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Four months!

Today Bean is four months!

Here’s her stats this month…


Head
Now: 17in (between percentile 90 and 95)
3 months: 16.25in (in percentile 75)
2 months: 16in (in percentile 50)
1 month: 15in (in percentile 50)
Birth: 13.75in (in percentile 50)


Length
Now: 24 in (between percentile 25 and 50)
3 months: 23 in (between percentile 10 and 25)
2 months: 22.75 in (between percentile 10 and 25)
1 month: 22 in (between percentile 50 and 75)
Birth: 20 in (in percentile 75)

Weight
Now: 15lbs (between percentile 50 and 75)
3 months: 14lbs (in percentile 75)
2 months: 12 lbs (between percentile 25 and 50)
1 month: 10 lbs (in percentile 50)
Birth: 7lbs 4 oz (between percentile 25 and 50)


Got four of those bows at Target for $3. I’ve never been much of a baby bow person before, especially when we would get all the birth announcements for The Voices and there would be babies with bows bigger than their little heads, but these were simple and cute and everyone definitely knows she’s a girl when she’s got one on.

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Eye Candy Friday: Final night challenge submission

Sunday night, my husband served as protector and chauffer as we went all over town at night searching for things for me to photograph. It was actually a lot of fun. I think some of our best conversations with eachother happen in the car because there aren’t many other distractions. Bean slept in the back the whole way which was nice because she needed some sleep.

My plan was to take some photos from the top of the 18th & Eye parking garage, but I changed my mind about that one. I did take a photo of the Fox theater, but it didn’t turn out good at all. I tried to get some pictures of the city lights and other items, but I didn’t really like those either. The best shots were of two local churches.

St. George’s Greek Orthodox Church on Truxtun:

OK this actually cracks me up. I love the juxtaposition of the very traditional brick orthodox church with the neon cross on top. However, I think this picture’s lighting wasn’t quite right so it didn’t wind up being my top pick.

Canyon Hills Assembly of God:

This church is up on the hill from my house. I’ve always liked how bright and lit up their steeple is as we pass by it at night and I’ve always wanted to take a picture of it.

Actually, speaking of steeples. For years I’ve wanted to take pictures of various church steeples from our travels, but Stephen never stops to let me take the pictures. I don’t know why I’m obsessed with steeples, but I am. So it was kind of nice just going around town with the purpose of me taking pictures and me getting to decide where we would go and where we would stop.

I had fun with this challenge and it helped me learn a little more about my camera and photography. So I’m pretty satisfied with that.

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Gourmet Lisa: Hearty Beef and Vegetable Chili

Just in time for the Super Bowl, one of our neighbors decided to have a chili cook-off.

I used to have this really great vegetarian chili recipe, but I lost it somewhere. I really like a chili with lots of stuff in it like vegetarian chili tends to have. I scoured the Internet and my recipe books for ideas and then cobbled together what is essentially a meal in a bowl.

So, this was my entry:

Ingredients
1 lb ground beef
24 oz chunky salsa of your choice (you want one that is chunky, but also saucey or you can use a Pico de Gallo and a can of tomato sauce)
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, pressed
2 tbsp dry rub seasoning 
2 tsp hot sauce of your choice (I used Chalula)
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup chopped carrots
2 yellow squash, chopped
1 cup chopped celery
2 cups chicken stock
1 bag Trader Joe’s frozen roasted corn (you can also do this yourself, but I’m lazy)
salt and pepper to taste
olive oil

Directions
Preheat oven to 400.

Salt and pepper beef. Brown with, onions, carrots, celery and garlic. Drain excess fat.

In large stock pot combine remaining ingredients except squash and olive oil. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer 30-40 minutes.

Meanwhile, place chopped squash on cookie sheet. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Place in oven until crisp-tender (Stephen hates mushy squash). Stir squash into chili.

Serve with corn bread and shredded cheese.

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Week seventeen

Dear Bean,

This week you continued to grow more curious and observant of the world around you. Our doggies are especially fascinating lately.

You also love to watch me cook and do chores.

You love the exersaucer at church more than the one we have at home because you can touch the ground and bounce around in that one. You can just barely brush the ground in the one at home, but you’ll grow into it soon.

You can sit up with the aid of the Boppy, but you are still a little wobbly and will fall over.

You are very quiet, serious and observant in social situations. You also get shy and bury your face into my chest sometimes when you get overwhelmed. I think it is pretty cute.

Kisses on the cheek make you giggle.

You love to “talk” and make funny noises. When we copy you it makes you laugh.

I think the teething monster is back because you haven’t been sleeping through the night consistently once again and you’ve also had your hands in your mouth all day. You haven’t been more fussy than usual though which is nice.

We’ve been putting you in the nursery on Sundays and Wednesdays for a few weeks now. You’ve done a great job from the first time and we haven’t ever been paged. Tonight you even took a nap there.

You are such a sweet, sweet girl and I love you so much.

Love,
Mama

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Some mobile pictures

Today I got to tour the downtown fire station with one of my mom groups. Then I went to KGET to pick up Megan so we could have lunch. I only had my cell phone camera with me though. I found a couple of other gems on there when I got home to upload them…


The last Daylight Rising concert… there were five people in attendance.


Augustana at a KLLY lounge. One of Stephen’s co-workers won four tickets so we went.


I thought this sign was so hilarious. In case you can’t tell it says “DEATH TO ALL WEEDS” in blood red dripping paint.


My dad with Bean one Sunday when we went over to fix his computer. Gotta love his magenta carpet.


Meg and Bean.


Meg and Bean again.


All three of us.

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Literary Love: I finished Don Quixote!

Don Quixote Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra



rating: 3 of 5 stars
This book was an OK read. There were some funny parts, some long tangents and some boring stuff.

Cervantes is making a critique of the books of chivalry that were being written by his peers at the time. He is trying to show the people of 1600s Spain that the tales are full of nonsense and if anyone actually believes them they are crazy.

“…for my only desire has been to have people reject and despise the false and nonsensical histories of the books of chivalry, which are already stumbling over the history of my true Don Quixote, and will undoutedly fall to the ground.” (p. 940)

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Eye Candy Friday: Let’s Talk Photography…

OK, I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this on here before, but my aunt is a real photographer. Back when she still lived in southern California, we used to go down there a lot to visit, especially when I was in high school. They had a huge property and she had a really nice studio in her backyard. She would take pictures of me and my sisters and we’d run around like little wild things exploring their backyard. I even served as her little assistant when she shot a high school prom (I got the oh so fabulous task of holding the gold reflector, among other things). Whenever I would get bored (which is pretty easy for a high school kid in the middle of no where with no transportation), I would read her photography magazines.

One time I read this article about finding, creating and using a “wall of light” in your shots (Sorry, I can’t find a how-to article on the Internet that really explains this and I know I would do a botch job of it). For some reason that article has stuck with me and I try to do it when I take pictures of stuff. Anyway, that was what I had in mind when taking a few of my favorite photos from the past week or so:

This week my reading in Shooting Digital covered a lot of things. One thing was knowing your camera’s weaknesses (apparently every camera has them, not just mine). It really helped me to to appreciate my camera a little better. If I really get to know it and know how to work around or with my limitations, I will be a better photographer. The other thing I read about was doing portraits. One thing about this book is that it seems to be geared toward someone like me that just wants some good tips on photography, but then again he really assumes you pretty much already know what you are doing in the photography world and have been using film. So he doesn’t really go into much detail about the composition of a photo. He spends more time talking about what someone who shot with film might be used to and how to achieve that same thing with a digital camera. I think there are probably better photography books out there that would be more useful to me. I’m still planning on finishing it though and I am picking up a few tips here and there.

Anyway, in other learning endeavors I’ve been working on the lastest challenge from Exposaroonie as well. Stephen is going to go out with me either tonight or tomorrow night so I can try shooting in a couple of other places. One of the places I want to go is downtown and he doesn’t want me to go there at night by myself.

Here’s what I have so far though:


This Gerber Daisy plant is right outside my front door. The only light available is from the porch light. I changed my ISO to 400 and didn’t use my flash.


This is sort of what the moon looked like Jan. 14. The photo definitely leaves something to be desired in me. With the naked eye you could see a lot more detail of the moon’s surface because it was so big. I tried several different settings on my camera to try and capture it and this was the only one that came close which was ISO at 400 and no flash. I also used my teleconverter lens.

So anyway, that’s what I’ve been up to with photography.

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Week sixteen

Dear Bean,

Today you are sixteen weeks old. You change so much every day.

I think we are getting a bit of a reprieve from the teething business because you definitely have not been as cranky this week. Your teeth still have not broken through, so I know we are in for some more eventually. I’ll take a happy baby for now though.

I think last week was your most photo and video documented week yet. Not necessarily because you did anything spectacular, but because I have found a renewed interest in photography and have been using you to practice with my camera.

This past week I noticed that you were kind of getting bored with the toys we’ve had out for the past month or so and I brought out a couple of new friends for you to play with.

As a knitter, it is pretty dang satisfying that your new favorite is the doll I made.

Today during our photo shoot I probably deserved to get the worst mother of the year award. Or that is how I felt anyway. Ever since your grandpa brought over my rocking horse I’ve been dying to get a picture of you on it. The temptation was far to great today and so I put you on it.


Not too sure about the rocking horse, with good reason.

I probably should have waited a couple more months until you are better at sitting up because you toppled right off of it (even though I was trying to help you balance) onto your bum. Thank God for thick and cushy cloth diapers. You weren’t hurt, just a little scared and that was quickly remedied by a little nursing. Thank God for breastfeeding. Anyway, it probably could have been a lot worse and I felt so dumb afterwards for even attempting it.

Things did not end there though. While we were doing standing practice you wriggled out of my hands and fell head first onto my camera which was sitting on the ground right next to us.

Yep. I’m a superstar mom alright. Even though I think that probably hurt worse you didn’t even cry and were up and giggling in a second. I’m sure you won’t hold a grudge against me for it when you are 16, so I’m not too worried. It was just a good reminder to be more careful with you because you are still little.

This summer your papa’s whole family is going to Mammoth, which they do every three years. I’m still trying to imagine what it will be like this year with a 10 month old. My first Mammoth experience happened when your Papa and I were engaged. I remembered being overwhelmed at meeting the WHOLE family for the first time and also thinking it was so neat that Papa’s family had this tradition. I can’t wait for you to experience it this year, and hopefully for many years to come.

Tomorrow we are going to meet up with some other families that my friend Emily says are “crunchy” just like us. They are part of a homeschooling group and they get together every Thursday for a park day. It will be so nice to meet some other families that don’t think it is weird to use cloth diapers, carry babies in a sling, or have homebirths. I can’t wait!

You are such a sweet and happy girl and I love you so much.

Love,

Mama

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