Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Road Trip Baby!

During the summer I hear a lot about vacations from other families. Things like, "I am really looking forward to our trip to the beach, but it is four hours in the car with the kids, ugh." I just giggle to myself. We take a 12 hour car trip with the Personal Assistant twice a year to visit family, and believe it or not, it's mostly enjoyable.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Refrigerator Pickles

The thing I love about summer, especially late summer, is eating fresh food from the garden. Like refrigerator pickles. The recipe could not be easier...

Friday, July 26, 2013

Hush-a-bye Burdie Croon

My four year old is boisterous, opinionated, busy and demanding.  He is creative, curious, shy of strangers but desires to be a leader.   He has no time for cuddles for anyone

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Multipurpose Yogurt Lid

I work on making yogurt at home, but sometimes I've just gotta grab some Stoneyfield Farm.  What kills me is the plastic.  I don't get to recycle #5 around here so I have to throw the container away.  But what I have learned is that the lid is perfect...for EVERYTHING!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Why I Love Thomas.

I used to hate Thomas the Train. I mean really, that song. Ugh. But now I really have grown to love that little blue engine and his friends. Why? Because I can use him to manipulate my kid.

  • It is the one show I can put on for my kid and leave the room to shower or clean and know that no one's Mother will be killed so that they can grow up/have an adventure. (Seriously, why do all the Moms bite it in the first ten minutes of a kid's movie?)
  • They appreciate nature (on really beautiful days my Personal Assistant will exclaim "Oh! What a beautiful day on the Island of Sodor!")
  • When they screw up, they always own up to it. (Now when my Personal Assistant spills or breaks something, he always comes running to tell me. Very Useful.)
  • They celebrate "special days" by being on their best behavior. And by "special" I mean totally ordinary.
  • They are obsessed. OBSESSED with being helpful. I can and do use this to my advantage.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Antique Strawberry Preserves II - The Recipe

This is the recipe I use.  I keep it just like this because I'm sentimental.  My grandmother, who tells stories of making this with her grandmother, Pearl, wrote it for me one hot afternoon. 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Antique Strawberry Preserves - Part I - The Story

I am enjoying my new kitchen and the brief strawberry harvest.  Even though there was too much rain, the berries are plump and soft.  They are like clouds that melt on my tongue with the taste of flowers.  I really - really - love strawberries.  Do you see my new kitchen window?  I have basil, chimes, a view, and of course wine. 

As I gaze at the mountains and contemplate my strawberries, I get nostalgic.  Of course I do.  That's like my second most common feeling.  (Sigh)  I would put a winky emoticon here, but that seems weird.  No?  Ok.  ; )

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Life without Internet

Currently I am writing to you from the parking lot of a cute pub in my neighborhood across from a lovely harbor.  You'll have to picture it because I have no photos...

The children are jumping into the water from the dock, and the laughter rides the ripples of water to the shore.  There is a line at the ice cream stand and children with sticky smiles of chocolate.  Someone seriously just ordered Gummi Bears on their ice cream sundae just because she can.

But I'm not here for pleasure...the internet provider who shall remain nameless has bumped us again...that will make two weeks with limited contact with the outside world.  At first I was FURIOUS!  But now....

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

OMG. I have a blog. (And sidewalk art stuff.)

The division of labor around these here blog parts is that Daisy writes for Thursday/Friday and I write for Monday/Tuesday, which usually happens on Sunday/Monday evening respectfully. Only yesterday was my seven year anniversary and the night before it was my turn to teach Wee School, my neighborhood's free parent run summer school for tots, and I have been feeling really sick, so I skipped the writing, figuring the five of you would understand. Unfortunately, Wee School got rained out. And I was totally bummed. I had 8+ cups of fresh sidewalk finger paint and a quart of fresh frozen wacky sidewalk chalk plus all the fun water activities I had planned, and no one was going to see it. Then I was all...OMG I have a blog. (Literally, that is exactly what I thought. Total weirdo, I know.) So sweet blog readers, behold, I present all five of you with sidewalk finger paint!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Easy rag yarn.

It would see I have a one track mind lately. Actually, I have a lot going on and having a simple craft to cling to when life gets overwhelming has been a real blessing. Summer is tough, because the attic studio gets too hot to work in even with the a/c on full blast, and unfortunately, creative activities are my chance to r-center myself, so it can get a little hairy around here when I am art/craft deprived. Thus my new obsession with rag crochet was born.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Leftover meal - Pasta

Please imagine Don Lafontaine's voice here: 
In a world :
...where your dream was to buy a new home...But the previous owners left crud in the refrigerator.  All of your groceries are wrapped in bags, safe from mysterious crumbs and stains.  Most of your pots and pans are buried under books and toys in the garage.
...which box is it??!! 
It is dinnertime!
In your  desperation you have located one pan and one pot.  You have located the runty stubs of several type ingredients.  You WILL survive!  You WILL make dinner!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

We're Moving!

Okay, we moved.  Past tense.  My therapist says that the stressful / challenging things we do in life allow us to "meet ourselves."  Hail, and well met!

After a lovely crew of friends and family arrived to help us move on a Thursday, we were left with the dregs on Friday.  Moving that couch makes a huge impact.  That cord?  That compost bucket?  The baby picture that needs to go into the album that is already packed and at the new place...wow.  The sorting, cleaning, second round of packing took about 13 hours the next day.

But I learned some important things!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

...how does your garden grow?

Welcome to part 2 of my mid-summer garden update. You are thrilled I am sure. Whatever, I am doing it anyway.

The play area looks really different. The daisies have filled in, the grasses are growing but short, (I may replace them with something taller in the fall) and the grass has filled in except for all the places we killed it by leaving toys out. (The shade on the sand box is fine, it just rained and I forgot to straighten it before taking this picture.) The climbing wall has become a place for building forts. Adorable, yet not pretty. Good thing this area is more about fun than pretty.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Mary, Mary quite contrary...

Can you believe it is mid-summer already? Holy cow. Summer must be the fastest season. Really, July always seems to catch me off guard. I thought it would be a good time to take stock of what's happening in the garden. The spring garden is, of course, well past it's peak, and there is something eating the columbine. But...