Monday, January 31, 2011


B gave me a kite for my birthday. I haven't flown a kite in about 25 years. My mom and I used to make kites and walk them up the street to the high school to fly them. I can still remember her incredibly precise measurements and folds - I get teased about being a perfectionist because I am a librarian but really I'm a hack compared to her. Anyway, they are really fond memories; the anticipation building in the walk to the field and the triumph of getting the kite aloft, all of it suffused in the somewhat pleasantly melancholic mood that strong wind still makes me feel.

We didn't make this kite but it was still loads of fun to hike up the mountain here and launch it into the wind. Sunday wasn't very windy but she still climbed right up there. I like just holding it and feeling it tug on my arms. B likes to run around. Osh likes it best when we run around while holding him - kid seriously busts a gut laughing if you run down a hill with him.

Also, I love this.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Well That's Good

Thursday night the kid started sleeping through the night. Just like that. I was so incredulous that I spent most of the night awake wondering what the hell was going on. Also, my boobs were a little startled by the turn of events although they are slowly getting the message. I can feel sleep flooding into the craggy underslept parts of my brain and boy it is good. B and I just finally decided that Osh was ready to work it out on his own and the little guy did not disappoint. How we love our bean, our string bean really - 28.5 inches long by latest measurements.

P, the shoes are a big hit...

We had grandparents in town this weekend so a date was had. Awesome. We went to see this film and absolutely loved it. Loved it despite fingers getting chopped off even. The language was absolutely hysterical. Thanks for the date GG and Grampa T!

Sadly, the new book, while better than the last really bad book, is not my thing. I can only handle so many ending paragraphs that take you through the last 50 years of someone's life. Just like that! Uh, I read books to understand the that. Anyway.

Figgy buckwheat tea cakes, possibly my favorite thing B makes theses days. May you be eating something equally yummy this fine Sunday morning.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Weekend of Good

Haircut. Housewarming party with over half a dozen kids tearing around our tiny house while adults eat almost 100 waffles made by my husband. Hike. A chuckling baby (different from a giggling baby) who is putting himself to sleep like a champ (seven months today, cripes). New tune. A book that already appears much better than the absolutely appalling one I had to muscle through for my book group. A phone date with my BFF and a hilarious video chat with my parents. Right now the husband is baking the house into a swirl of good smells, the babs is napping, and I'm about to cut fabric for this quilt that I've got a mind to make. Good, good, good.

Have great weeks out there.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Still With the Baking

Yeah, ok, so most people have put their last sheet of cookies in the oven for at least a few months, we are still baking around here. B gave me this book for my birthday. It's been said before, but this is a gorgeous book. I eyeballed a lot of these recipes when they were put up online last year, but I'm glad to have them in hand. Although there are goofy number of jam filled affairs, choice ingredients like dates, figs, and sesame seeds show up and make me happy. The cookie in my palm up there is technically referred to as a Speculaa, but we have renamed them Spicy Delicious Cookies (we like Spicy Delicious Things), because sorry, the given name reminds me of a speculum. Righty-o. Anyway, these immediately joined my short list of kickass cookie recipes. They are powerfully spicy, perfectly crisp and chewy, and not too sweet. With notable exceptions (Uncle Gonzo, I am talking to you) I disapprove of mailing cookies around, but I actually think these taste better with age so they might be a good candidate for the postal delivery. They are also a snap to make:

Sift together:
3 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon clove
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground anise seed
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt

Beat together:
1 cup butter (two sticks)
1 1/2 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar (add a slosh of molasses if you don't have this)
3 tablespoons rum, whiskey, or milk

Gradually add the flour mixture until well combined. Turn onto counter and knead lightly to gather together. Roll into rectangle 1/4 to 1/3 inch thick. Cut into shapes. (Here the recipe says to press blanched almonds into the dough. I have this thing with blanched almonds: I think they are gross. We tried these with regular almonds and pretty much decided that we prefer these nut-free. Do your thing.) Brush lightly with egg whites, bake at 375 for 10 minutes (or 12-15 if you want a totally crunch cookie). They'll set up quite a bit after you take them off of the cookie sheets.

In other news worth reporting: this kid is raring to go in the locomotion department. So far only backwards (see baby under the couch). It is so awesome to watch him figure this stuff out. Not as awesome to stumble into his room at four in the morning to find him pissed about trying to crawl, but whatevah, he's gotta get him time in when it suits.

Smooches about you all.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Birthday Girl

Yesterday I turned 34. I liked 33 a lot, but I'm game for this number too. I have always thought that birthdays were really more about the mamas who birthed those babies, and now I really think that. I call my mom on my birthday, and Oscar, you better call me on yours. Speaking of Oscar, he gave me a birthday present that pretty much eclipsed all the other extremely awesome things that happened yesterday: one, he slept for six hours straight without a peep that night and two, he put himself down for a nap all by his little self. I know I have readers who are probably like, bfd, but I know I also have readers who get just exactly how priceless it is to be able to put your kid in the bed and leave him there for a snooze. I danced a jig in the livingroom that nearly left me wounded, I was that excited. We have been hanging in there as cheerfully as possible, but the last two months or so have been a real ride in the sleep department. Moving, teeth, new motor skills, who knows. So, you know, thanks for the sleep, kid, you made your mama greet the day with serious zeal.

Fresh faced family after a kicking hike. Oh the faces we make to get this kid to smile at the camera.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Hello New Year

Dear 2010: we are a little sorry to see you go, because frankly, you rocked our socks. Thanks for that.

We rang in the new year with our customary epic hike and palate rocking Indonesian coconut beef situation (cinnamon sticks, star anise, cardamom pods above - they join awesome things like lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves and oh hell, the yum). I finished sewing curtains for Osh's new room and B made cocktails that knocked us out well before midnight. I never felt an obligation to power through the new year even before I had a kid, thankyouverymuch.

Profiles to the west on the Swannanoa River.

Baby still learning about size ratio stuff = awesome.

Happy New Year, lovely people. May this one treat you right.