Friday, June 27, 2008

Catching up

It has been a bit crazy here. I have two kids with Strep. Keelin is having a reaction to the antibiotic. We had Michael's parents over the weekend. We have celebrated my niece's birthday. We are still working on school. But my biggest news is that the VITAMIX arrived. I have made a ton of (healthy) ice cream and margaritas. I am attempting broccoli cheese soup today. It is fun and very quick.
Another side bit is Michael is moving jobs within his company so he had enough time to do a little reading on the plastic issue. We are a soccer family and use Nalgene bottles every day. Well, not anymore. In fact, I am having to give up my precious water cooler. I will be in mourning for a while. I did call and cancel Crystal Springs. I am sure that you heard the wail after I hung up. The best part is how Michael explained to me that in place of my hot/cold cooler, he could create a worm bin. I am working through this slowly and decided that as long as it went with the kitchen theme, I would be the big girl. But I had a brilliant plan that we could put a shelf on top and use it to set the Vitamix on. The astonished reply about how disturbing and upsetting it would be to the worms was not what I had envisioned. So the plan for the next few weeks is to remove the water cooler, add a worm bin and where is my cold and hot water on demand again??? I have to add though that Michael has reluctantly accepted we are getting chickens in Dec. A girl in my homeschool group is moving and we are adopting her five chickens. I will have fresh eggs and know where one more food item we eat comes from. Bryn suggested to my mom that she bargain with Papa for the alpaca she desires. She said that Mom got her Vitamix and Dad got his worm bin, so Nana just needed to find something that Papa wanted and she had her leverage. Pretty insightful about our family dynamics around here. Well, everyone here is stirring awake so I am off to serve strawberry basil ice cream for breakfast. (strawberries, basil, milk, and 2 tbsp of sweetener (agave nectar). We can count that as healthy right. Just add a a piece of toast for the carb. Come by anytime and we will make you something delightful and healthy quickly.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


Katrina tagged me for 6 random things and it took me all this time to get to it. Here goes:
1. I am a water snob. I do not like anything other than cold water to drink. It can not be luke warm or even worse warm. I will become dehydrated rather than drink anything that is not cold. I can not say the same for other drinks, just water. and I am also a big believer in spring water-no ordinary tap water. I can taste the chlorine and all the other YUCK in regular water.
2. I really like scotch. Also a bit of a snob here too. I like Macallan or Glenlivet and the older the better. I learned how to do shots of whiskey in college and so the transition to scotch-- not too difficult.
3. I don't like to be in water. I especially don't like cold water for bathing or swimming. We have a hot tub and I like it but I am don't get into the pool with the kids very often and usually not until at least end of July.
4. Someday I would like to own a winery. When we lived in California , we did a lot of winery tours and it seems very indulgent and romantic to own a winery. M plan is to own one out of the country with a castle so we can have a bed and breakfast too. I have no intention of running either of these full time. Just when I feel like it.
5. Some people do not know that Michael and I were nomadic for 6 months when Denali was 1 and we lived in a tent trailer crossing the country. We have some memories that we could not ever recreate.
6. I love to bake but most especially bread. Another great plan in my head is to apprentice as a baker with this girl in Asheville. She is no longer baking but I wish I could. Never to do it for a living but for my own benefit (well anyone who wanders in for dinner could benefit as well.


This week is a week of finally. Finally Michael is finishing the window at the end of the hall that he started last July 4th weekend. Finally we gave up on the blender and ordered our VITAMIX!!!! And finally it feels like summer with a not so very organized schedule. I am happy to report we have been to the pool twice so far this summer and Keaton has not drowned. I actually had a dream a few weeks ago that kept me up for the rest of the night/ early morning hours that he did and so it is a bit daring of me to challenge fate but the kids are hot so... We are also gearing up for soccer since we (Denali) decided to step it up a notch. She is moving to a new team where her father will not be her coach but more like her trainer. She will play year round this year and see if she is interested in a travelling team next year. She will not have a middle school team to try out for so this is our route if it is her passion. Who would have thought 6 yrs ago when we could not catch our breath from laughter at the sight of eight four year olds bunching themselves together and not noticing where the goals were located that we would be setting running, sit ups, pull ups, etc goals for her to help her succeed? Anyhow, her awesome experiences up until now have fueled her love for the game so we owe a great deal of thanks to all her previous coaches. Tomorrow's post will be more clever as I plan to list thirteen things I intend to make with my new Vitamix.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Thursday Thirteen

Thirteen things I love about summer:
1.Organic tomatoes
2.Fresh Herbs
3.Bike rides for ice cream (yes I am that desperate and environmental that I made everyone ride 4.8 miles for Ben and Jerry's)
4.The smell of an afternoon shower
5.The smell of hydrangeas
6.A week in my planner with nothing scheduled on it
7.Impromptu trips to the beach
8.Later bedtimes, sleeping in
9.Fresh fruit being part of every meal
10.Time for friends and family
11.The smell of honeysuckle
12.Shorter schooling days
13.Sunshine and lemonade (Not the blog although I love Katrina's)
A small note- my produce came this week from
They do a weekly box and I am very impressed with their plan. You do not have to commit to any length of time and the variety seems to be there. Anyway check them out if you are in the Atlanta neighborhood and see if it will work for you. A commercial for the eat local plan.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Back to Normal?

We have returned from our trip and while not exactly restful, fun none the less. We managed to leave at 7am and arrived home a little after 1pm with four stops. Keaton had his toes painted, Bryn managed to secure new flip flops for all the girls by breaking hers and then choosing the BEST flip flops that all must have, Denali was able to rest her eyes and only read four books, and Keelin learned that dead fish stink (just ask her about it). Michael seemed most disappointed that I only took 30 pictures in a week, and while I agree on principle it was impossible to prevent drownings while snapping photos. So I am including a few. The little girl with her eyes closed is the niece from Thursday's thirteen.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Thirteen things my niece has eaten on vacation

My youngest niece is only 1 and has not learned the meaning of "not for eating"- a famous quote in our house. Here is a quick list of things laced in her mouth although thankfully removed.
1.Sand- we are at the beach however, the continued eating of it with or without the spilled yogurt is the mystery to me.
2. Shells- again normal until you chew on a sharp one drawing blood.
3. A wooden block- this is actually not entirely true as the block splintered leaving just the shards of wood in her mouth.
4. A Nerf football- orange and blue is easy to spot as out of lace for a mouth.
5. Tissue- we are sure she is part beaver based on the wood products she regularly consumes.
6. Sticks- actually parts from the protected dunes- please don't report us as the fine is in the thousands and I feel certain she did not eat THAT many!
7. A bottle cap from the water- seems easier to me to remove the cap to get to the water but with age comes wisdom right?
8. Matches- keeping in mind that this is a rental property so kid locks seem a bit over the top
9.Bug spray-fortunately she managed to be spotted quickly but we did not seem to have to swat any flying creatures while at the outdoor concert tonight- hmmm
10. A book and not even one about food or with food like pictures.
11. Plastic ties -this was a major concern because they would have been pointy going down and might have punctured a lung
12. A ponytail holder- only explanation here is the girl to boy ratio is 7:1
13.Broccoli- she fished it out of the trash.

Monday, June 2, 2008

A squirrel held me captive

On Tuesday I went to the grocery and returned to hear funny noises in the hot tub room. I assumed it was outside until the girls exited the car to help unload the food. They came towards the back door and saw a squirrel in our screened in room. He seemed very upset (angry) that he was trapped and ran around the room possessed. We screamed as though we were auditioning for a bad horror flick and slammed the door once inside safely. A quick headcount helped to determine we were without a member, the baby was still in his car seat. We used the porch door to unload the baby and the groceries. However, the extra fridge was in the screened room. I had planned on using it since a veggie family of six needs a lot of produce. I banged on the wall trying to encourage our visitor to leave out the door that I propped open. As I stepped out to put a few items in, I noticed the loaf of french bread that had been accidentally left out was half eaten. I opened the fridge and HE popped out to hiss at me. I decided there must be enough room in the inside fridge. Our playdates arrived to an explanation that no swimming was allowed today as we were being held captive by a varmint. I called Michael to inform him of his evening plan. He suggested options for me to handle this situation but I feel some tasks are not for me, so I declined the offer of a solution. The kids spent many trips near to the room to assure me they thought the visitor had vacated. Not convinced, I held firm thank goodness. We were anxiously awaiting Michael when I heard noises in the outside room. I explained to my mom on the phone that this thing was taunting me when in fact it was just Michael chasing him out with the flag from the baby bike seat. Does this seem odd to anyone else as it is small, thin and useless? Did he not remember the rats? After a few rounds around the hot tub room by the squirrel and Michael not enjoying five faces glued to the window screaming out advice as to which direction he'd run and where his next move would take him, Michael made a trip to the shed for a rake. The explanation was to protect his face, so he pokes the rake behind the fridge and out flies the squirrel to the top corner of the screen and painted wood. He could not get a grip-- we have concluded this is probably due to the entire loaf of french bread. He somersaults, as we in the house screech and then double over with laughter, and lands in the baby stroller. After his poorly executed gymnastic move , he did scurry out the door. Michael comes in to explain that he must clean up after the squirrel since he did eat the bread. We assumed he hid the remaining bread behind the fridge until Michael checked thoroughly. That squirrel ate the ENTIRE loaf of french bread and was a bit bloated causing his tumble. Michael suggested to the girls that he may have been distributing the bread as one would in a soup kitchen handing it out to the needy squirrels in the yard (picture 6ft 5 man demonstrating how a squirrel would walk on hind legs to hand out bread at the door). Well, I feel comfortable now that he is not coming back, but just in case Michael is supposed to add plexi glass to the bottom of the screening for the holes in the screen room from the rats. For a woman who hates to have anything in her house who does not significantly contribute to the family ( I am a busy mom who needs no more work) you would think I would have posted the unwelcome sign more clearly. I am now recovering at the beach with my sister and all 6 of our kids. Who knows what kind of vacation I might need if we experience a large infestation ever. Poor Michael will have to start a new savings plan.