Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Midweek News

Our internet connection has been outstandingly craptastic lately, so getting here has been a bit of a challenge. Not to worry, this little family is keeping busy while taking it slow, if that's possible.

On the keeping busy front: we pulled out all the carrots and beets and beans and greens and flowers and sowed the majority of seeds for the winter garden. Made a tomato pie (note: use more tomatoes than she calls for, less cheese and salt), green enchiladas from CI (we are drowning in tomatillos), and we're still cranking on batches of pesto. Put up a half bushel of peaches, staring down the other half a bushel on the kitchen floor. Picked five gallons of blueberries (Osh's first berrying!) with plans to pick again this weekend (the berries are sooooo good this year!). Played a wedding in Tennessee for a friend, drove back over the mountains way too late for all of us, B and I talking deliriously of all things under the sun as though we had just met.

Uncle Shark, discussing the eating of Oscar with Oscar himself.

On the slow and sweet front, Osh has recently received visits from Grandpa T and GG (Grandma Gail), Grand Uncle Shark, and his Grampa Whis is motoring south as I type this. We pretty much sit around and make people agree that his little butts are the cutest thing on the planet. Seriously, there is nothing like baby tush. We have been lucking into family naps and good nights of sleep, and Oscar has been smiling like to break our hearts. I told my mom that I hoped the charm of his smile wears off a little because right now I'd give him the world if he smiled and asked. "What, you want to eat 8 chocolate bars for dinner? You got it." We have even been getting lovely afternoon and evening storms, the kind where the wind just sweeps away the 90+ degree weather and (for a moment) leaves everything cool and clean. Life is so fab, who needs the stinkin' internet when you can watch a baby listen to a storm roll through?


Smooches from the homefront.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


I am in no way a grammar girl, but I have been fond of the gerund since realizing that it got me out of more difficult verb conjugations while learning Spanish on the fly in Colombia when I was 19. Holy hell, wtf is up with that sentence? I am just going to leave it there so that it can annoy me later.

Anyway, here are today's gerunds: pickling, catching, picking, playing.

With the pickling: we went to visit one of our favorite friends and musicians and he sent us home with a huge bag of okra and a bunch of beautiful corn. He has what is practically a farm in his backyard since he charmed his neighbors into letting him take over their backyards too. Anyway, we don't know what the hell to do with okra so we pickled it. I had forgotten how gorgeous okra blossoms are, and the plants are like long legged school girls.

With the catching: I don't believe I have bitched about it here, but we have had one chicken who has been escaping almost daily for months now, and then a few weeks ago she showed her trick to a gal pal and we've had two chickens escaping sometimes three times a day! Maddening. B and I have walked the perimeter of our fence about 600 times each, looking for places they could slip under. B thought they might be getting over, but I felt certain that was not the case. Anyway, we finally chose a day for the stakeout. B headed out there first and spent an hour playing fiddle tunes while watching: no luck. I then headed out with a banjo and a bottle of mosquito repellent and about 35 minutes later B heard me screech from the backyard. Turns out there was one tiny three inch strand of the fence that had torn, and those clever hens were slipping through. After months and months of this, it was a mighty fine feeling and we have not had to chase a hen since. If I'd known it was only going to take an hour and a half I would have done it sooner, righty-o.

Also with the catching: we are doing an extremely laid back version of EC with Osh, and I caught my first pee! Also resulting in something of a screech. We got a baby who hates to hang out in a wet diaper (smart baby), and I am down with the whole suggestion that training babies to be ok hanging out in a soiled diaper just makes for more work later. We'll see how it goes, sometimes it pisses him off to get held over a sink (smart baby).

With the picking: yesterday we picked about a third of a bushel of plums and cooked up some plum sauce. We are especially excited about this since last year a frost took out all the plums so we went without this fruit for the year. Someone has finally moved into the house where this magic tree grows, but I screwed up my courage and rang the dang doorbell and a very awkward teenager ran back and forth between me and my nervous request and some adult in the house and now we just need to go back and give them some sauce so that next year they'll say yes again.

With the playing: yes, this is how you practice the fiddle with a one-month kid. He is sacked out but not so sacked out that he wouldn't notice if he was no longer On Your Person. I think the only thing I was nervous about when we got ready to have babies was music. Getting enough music in my life has been a tooth and nail kind of thing. B can ignore his fiddle for months and pick it up and sound awesome. Not me. I have to practice and I have to keep thinking about it or it slides out of my head and onto my pillow at night. So far so good, I ate a whole new fiddle tune since Osh arrived. D tunes bite my ass. And yes, my hair looks very lame in this photo, I need a haircut like never before.

Tomorrow B goes back to work. He's going back a few days a week, and soon I'll go back a few days a week. Osh will have one of us all to himself for quite some time this way. We feel really lucky that we can do this together, I think it will be a good balance for all of us.

It's time to plant the fall garden, I can hardly believe it. Oscar will probably EAT some of these vegetables, how completely insane is that? We are planting the usual plus brussel sprouts this year. Yum.

Eat your greens.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


This is what we do a lot of: lying around on plush surfaces laughing and smooching baby tummy. Good times.

Keep cool out there.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Bits and Pieces

Osh in his stylish hat from Aunt Diets.

Too much to say to do much saying, if you know what I mean. We are sleeping well, napping great, and still enjoying the generosity of our amazing community of friends when it comes to eating. Seriously: the bring-food-to-the-new-family thing is the greatest. Left to our own devices we would be running on tortillas and eggs, with celery and avocados for good measure.

Osh is an absolute array of faces these days. I love watching him wake up more than anything. He stretches and squinches and yawns and makes a noise like a baby lion (he gets that from me) and I just sit there trying not to laugh out loud so that he'll take longer to wake.

The garden is starting to spit out tomatoes and peppers and tomatillos, and we're in keep-up-with-the-cukes mode so some pickles were made. It's time to get a handle on the grove of basil out there and past time to do something with a bunch of big beautiful cabbages. Right. Just as soon as I go stare at the baby some more...

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Two Weeks

This pose is so B that it hurts

Time is flying around here but we are doing our best to enjoy the hell out of every moment we can hang on to. Our friends have been loving on us with pans of delicious food and super fun visits (Hi Lucy!) and we got lucky and had a little family time with one of B's cousins and his awesome girlfriend-soon-to-be-wife, en route to Texas. It makes my heart swell to see this little guy snuggled up by folks we love. Oscar rocked the scale at the Baby Doc's this morning; he gained a pound in nine days, thankyouverymuch, and grew one and three-quarters of an inch. Long and strong, that's my boy.

A few things from these parts:

A strawberry rhubarb pie was made from ingredients we squirreled away in the freezer. I used this recipe and was not happy: I hate being able to tell when there is tapioca in a pie. I will try again next year.

Boozy Cherries, a treat made in the Waiting for Oscar days. Just brandy, sugar, and cherries: more than the sum of the parts, a sneaky treat on ice cream or just spooned out of the jar on a hot afternoon.

Crafty Papa: making a black and white mobile was on our list of things to do before Oscar arrived, and well, he was on time and we were not. So B has been stealing moments here and there to make a papercut mobile, and I must say: he knocked it out of the park. B does not tend to do art projects unless I ask him to (see our stunning wedding invitation), but once he gets rolling he's a house of talent. I am so psyched that having a kid will get him drawing and painting and building things. There are nine discs like this, and I'll try to get a shot of the finished mobile once we hang it; it's so cool and Osh loves it.

Dahlias are on. It's hot and dry here; the garden is hurting. We have a lot of empty space now that most of the alliums are out, and while there was talk of more carrots and another bed of beans, we sowed a cover crop and called it a day. We'll be lucky to deal with what's already growing out there...

More soon - may you all be dealing well with what's already growing out there.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy Fourth

Happy Fourths of July out there.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Alliums and Grand Mums

Goodness gracious, me oh my, we are in heaven over here, just moving through our days at whatever pace Oscar sets. It is more fun and sweet and hilarious than I could ever capture here. This face just slays us in so many different ways.

There were specific requests for some Gramma B photos, and here is a cute one. My mama just left yesterday - she cooked and cleaned and snuggled and laundered and loved on all three of us just so and we will never forget these first sweet Oscar days with her. Thanks, Mama, we miss you already.

The garden grows on, and we're doing what we can to keep up with it. We head out with Busy in the bassinet and putter as long as he's game. We just harvested most of the alliums - onions and garlic galore! They are lovely, and the garage is full of racks of things curing for the winter. Lots of beans and beets and, well, see for yourself:

Happy days here, and may they be there also.