Wednesday, March 10, 2010

This Month with Ellery

Ellery is almost 10 months old!  Madness.  We're starting to think about her first birthday party Bean is almost all grown up!  She's really fun these days.  Suuuper busy, crawly, spitty, eaty, standy, pull-uppy, and cute.  I love our days together!

Here's the update email I just sent out to our family to keep them up-to-date on our lives.  I thought I'd put it out there for everyone to see!

She plays with this music table every single day.  It's basically her favorite thing right now.  And I'm getting really good at singing the ABCs in Spanish!

She's eating a ton and growing well (I think!)  We go back in to check her weight early next week...I'll let you know the results!

Yeah, I have a lot of pictures of her shoving food in her face.  She loves to eat!

She's still cute too.  Just in case you were worried about that.

Loves to 'walk' around the room holding on to everything, and is getting better at transferring from object to object in her quest to get into every corner, nook, and cranny!

Nakey Diaper Time (with just the breathable cotton layer) is a daily occurrence, and she usually takes the opportunity to pull everything off of these shelves over and over.  We know how to party!

We have two growing, sharp teeth!  In her enthusiasm to consume food, we are working on not biting everything she sees.  It's hard to learn why you can bite toast but not fingers!

Again with the table.  Seriously at least 30 minutes every day.

Oh, and I need to figure out how to edit some video, because the music table has inspired some great dance moves around here.  Without prompting, she just started bopping around to it one night.  It's very bobblehead-esque.  Fantastic.  Now she'll Bobble on cue, and the hips are starting to get involved.  Watch out, world.

 And again with the food.  Do you see a pattern here?  Eat, music table, eat, pull everything off of shelves, eat, sleep, eat again.  That's our life right now!

She still sleeps really issues since we fought through her crying in Frisco!  Thanks for putting up with that, Heartys.  She's a champ sleeper now!

She now has a drawer in the kitchen that's all hers...we pull out her baking set while I cook so we can both get some serious work done.

And we've been supplementing with formula in the evenings just to make sure she's getting enough food overall.  I don't know what I'll do if she hasn't grown enough at this next weigh-in...I seriously feed her for at least 75% of the time she's awake.  She only eats 2-4 ounces of it once a day if she takes any at all, so I think that she's getting enough other stuff in general.  We just top off her tanks just in case there's any room left!  :)  Aren't these two just the best?

There you go!  Just a quick peek into our lives!


Mmm.  Books.  You know, my opinion of people has gone up and down a lot in my life, but my relationship with my books has always been consistently, reliably awesome.  Yes, that makes me a big nerd.  But it doesn't matter if you decide not to like me for being a nerd, because I have my books to keep me company.  I love them.

One day, back in 2006, I was sitting in an airport with Tim, re-reading Heart of Darkness.  This dark masterpiece by Joseph Conrad was placed on a list of the Top 100 Novels of the 20th Century, and the version I was reading happened to have the whole list printed in the back.  Now, I've been a reader for most of my life.  I've read a lot of good books.  I was shocked to see that I had only read 3 of the books on the list, and had only even heard of about 20.

So a new vision for my 20s was born.  I decided to start reading the whole list, and I made a goal to finish by the time I turn 30.  I visit our wonderful library about once a week because I just like it there (and want Ellery to like it too), and I try to get through 1-2 books each month.  I am currently 72 in, with only 28 to go in the next 25 months!  Totally doable.

I would really like to post the list on here with my progress, but I have no idea on the best way to do that.  I'll work on it.

Maybe I'll write some thoughts on each too?  Hmm.  I'll see what I can do.

In the meantime, here's my favorite reviewer of The List.  He really hasn't done anything new in the last year or so, but I keep hoping he'll pop back up someday.  Meet Doug.  Good stuff!

For now we'll just stay current.
Last Book:  Appointment in Samarra by John O'Hara
Current Book:  The Magnificent Ambersons by Booth Tarkington
And because I just remembered that I actually finished that one before bed last night...
Next Book:  The Ginger Man by JP Donleavy

Mmm...I loved The Magnificent Ambersons.  Primarily because of the name.  And the author's name.  Booth Tarkington.  That's just fantastic.  Do you hear me out there, Bowdeys who are soon to have a boy whose name has not been decided upon yet?  Booth Tarkington!  It's perfect.  Uncle Booth Bowdey.  I love him.

Yeah, it's been a while.

It's been over a month since I've posted anything.  I just stopped paying attention, and since I haven't actually told anyone to come look at the blog yet, I figured I could get away with it.  I also spend a lot less time on the computer now that Ellie and I spend our whole day getting her to eat more food...she's growing well, though, so the pressure of stuffing her face continually is finally easing up a bit!  :)  I'll catch back up eventually!

Things I need to catch up on posting about:
-Pictures, pictures, pictures of the Squirmy Bean!!
-Recent crafty projects...babylegs, bib towels, lined diapers
-Weekly Menus...I've been cooking a ton of new recipes this month.  Mmm.
-All the other thrilling details of our riveting life!

I'll get started uploading pictures!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Weekly Menu

It's Tuesday!  We're overdue for a menu!

I did my shopping Sunday, so it got included in the week.  Just didn't want to freak any of my zero followers out with the change.  :)

Week of Jan 24-29
   Sunday -- Sausage & Pepper Calzones
   Monday -- Pesto Pasta
   Tuesday -- BBQ Pork Sandwiches in the crock pot & sweet potato fries
   Wednesday -- Grilled Chicken with veggie kebobs...peppers, mushrooms, pineapple, onions...
   Thursday -- Leftovers!  Lots of big meals this week.
   Friday -- Southern Sun?  If we stay home, I'll probably just make a pizza.  Yum!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Rooty Tubers

This is one of Tim's favorite sides...along with pretty much any version of roasted potatoes that I can come up with.  He usually calls it 'that roasted mix of veggies' or 'the one with the different potatoes,' so it was time to actually come up with a name.  While adding the week's menu on here yesterday I wanted to call them Tuberlicious, but then I figured out that carrots and parsnips are actually roots, not tubers.  Roasted Rooty Tubers were named!

You will need:
2-3 red potatoes
1-2 small sweet potatoes
2-3 carrots
1-2 parsnips
(you can vary the amounts to make as much as you want. 
Just try to keep the proportions similar to each other)

Garlic-Infused Olive Oil
(I make mine...future post...)
Spices of Choice...
(I modify these to match whatever I'm serving them with)
Last night I used:
Crunchy minced garlic (made with the garlic EVOO)
Onion Powder
Salt & Pepper
Parsley... just because it's green and looks nice.

Scrub your roots & tubers

I only used 1 of these sweet potatoes...I put the other two into the oven whole to roast while everything else was cooking so that I could add some effort-free, delicious, healthy food to my lunch today.  :)
I think I also added one more red just needed a little more.

I peel the parsnips but not the carrots.  I don't know why, but it's what I do.

Chop everything into inch-sized pieces or smaller...just get them into a similar, bite-sized state.

Toss them in a big bowl with the garlic-infused oil.
This stuff is so good!  I've added EVOO and garlic separately to dishes for years, but since discovering how easy and delicious this business is, I've never looked back.  
Next time I make a batch, I'll show you how I do it!

Add your spices, toss again, spread in a single layer on a roasting pan or cookie sheet.
These crunchy garlic bits are a side-product of infusing the garlic into the olive oil.  
SO so so good with oil & vinegar on a plate for dipping crusty bread!

Roast at 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes, turning every 10 minutes or so.

I let these go a bit long on one side...normally I turn them a little more often so that they brown evenly...nursing babies sometimes make my cooking less visually appealing.  Still taste great though!

Serve 'em up!  I love them with grilled peppery steak alongside tomato & red onion salad.  Tim's family usually serves steak with grilled onions and mushrooms, so we alternate that with the tomatoes for his sake.
(the Heartys are tomato and onion fans!)
Mmm...I wish I had more of that salad to eat's so good!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Weekly Menu

Here's my plan for the good eats this week!

I asked Tim what he wanted, and he requested something with garlic bread and something with those different roasted potatoes (I don't quite know what else to call it, but it's one of our favorite sides).  Can do.

Week of Jan 18-22
Monday:  Steak, tomato and red onion salad,  & Roasted Rooty Tubers (I'll post a recipe later tonight with's really good)
Tuesday:  Chicken & Wild Rice soup with crusty rye bread (rainy snow in the forecast...)
Wednesday:  Zesty Chicken on egg noodles (new recipe!)
Thursday:  Spinach & Mozzarella Ravioli, garlic bread on onion buns
Friday:  Either out to Southern Sun (with our giftcard from Dave!) or leftovers, depending on how climbing plans develop

Mmm...I want to eat it all right now.  I shall wait, however, because I picked me up some powdered donettes at the grocery store and they are delish.  I'm glad that steak is for tonight because it sounds really really good right now!

PS--If it seems weird to you that I would have an outdoor grilling meal and a snowy day soup on back to back days, you've never lived in Colorado.  :)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Susan vs Lucy

Are you Susan, or are you Lucy?

I just finished watching Prince Caspian.  I loved it.
Tim is gone; I made popcorn and cherry limeade daiquiri(s)*; I sat with my cat on my lap, baby in bed, and watched an interpretation of the second book in one of my favorite ever literary sets.

My dear husband once saw the same on a plane when he hadn't paid for headphones, and therefore thought it was obnoxious because he couldn't take his eyes off of the silent film forced in front of his eyes.  I haven't seen it in the two years since it has come out because I like to watch movies with him and don't often watch them by myself.  
This was my chance.

You could argue over a lot of things about the movie as a whole...debate how closely it kept to the book's story, opine whether or not battle scenes were realistic, discuss the role of mainstream media in the Christian 'agenda'...but really, it was fun, told an exciting story, and (I think) closely followed the trajectory of Lewis' original intent in writing the series.
Positive review from me.

What captured me for the entire 2.5 hours had nothing to do with cinematography, writing, or agendas.  I was caught up in the roles that the four Pevensie kids play over the course of the books.  CS Lewis was a very wise and well-spoken author; the children's personalities (both strengths and weaknesses) are not accidental.  They embody the functions filled by individuals throughout the Church...where one is weak, the other is strong.  Where one doubts, the other has faith.  Where one leads, others follow.  Where one fights, another heals.  The picture of the Body of Christ moving in this world given to us by Paul in 1 Corinthians couldn't be better exemplified than by this family.

More so, I was stuck on the two characters of Susan and Lucy.
Their relationship has always kind of felt sticky inside of me as I've read, but for some reason the whole picture came into focus for me as I watched tonight.
(Whether it was due to the daiquiris or to my current station as a housey mom you are free to decide on your own).

I'm a little sister.  I'm a middle child.  I'm even the younger of two middle children.  I was a quiet kid who liked reading and playing in the woods.  It is really easy for me to sit unnoticed in the role of a Lucy (read: young, unheeded, loopy?, sidelined) in my families, both biological and social.

But in my prouder moments, I fight to be seen as a Susan!  I want people to think of me as being in the front of the charge, scheming with the Head of the Army as to how we are going to bring our side the victory, brave enough to take on anything, responsible enough to sit with a bow and take people out from far away.  (way better than being up front with all of the swords... )

She is just so much cooler.  I sit here watching the movie (which I realize is not real life), fuming (in real life) with jealousy over how unfair it is that Santa brought her a cool bow and arrow set when all I got is this lame knife and bottle of fixer upper juice.

In my secret inside place, I wish I could be the big, upfront fighter who gets to tell all of the little sisters how they can get in line.
In my honest moments, I realize that I am forever a little sister who has been given a kind, compassionate heart and the tools necessary to work towards healing with injured people coming back from the front lines.

The plot point in this movie that brought me to tears wasn't the big victory or the restoration or the presh kiss at the end.  It was the moment when the whole fighty-cool crowd came back from their exciting/tragic/hopeful/defeating attack at the Lucy...sitting by herself in a cave.

I realized...This is how I feel.  Like the world around me has been called to this crazy upfront purpose and they're all over the place telling stories of the excitement/tragedy/hope/defeat, and I am sitting by myself in a cave waiting for my turn to help someone out.

I really, truly think that I have been put on this earth to love my husband and baby girl and to serve them as they are grown into God's purpose for them.  That's all good stuff.
I really, truly think I am here to encourage and walk alongside women as they navigate the battles and victories of adolescence into adulthood...often working to heal wounds from those battles.  That's good stuff.
I have tried to act like I was called into fighter roles for the faith (whatever that even means), but it was not good stuff.  I felt like a faker and knew that what I was doing was not loving.  Bad stuff.

I love that Lucy is the one that gets Aslan well enough to know where to go looking for him.  I love that she is comfortable enough with who he is to roll him over with a hug when she sees him.  I love that she knows where the real power is, and that she calls him into the battle instead of picking up her wussy knife and trying to fight by herself.  I love that Aslan wins.  That's awesome, and my heart is full at the thought.

I don't want to wait in a cave.  I want to seek out the Lord's purpose for me in this world while still maintaining an understanding of the unique gifts he has given to me, not pretending that I am made for something that seems cooler at the time.

But I'm still feeling narrow-minded and short-visioned tonight.
I'm frustrated with the wussy knife.
I wish I had a bow and arrow.
It's so much cooler.