Wednesday, September 1, 2010
We are hours/days (please don't say weeks) away from changing your life dramatically. You are about to become a big sister. I sit here at two o'clock in the morning more then a little emotional thinking of all the changes that are coming to our family, to your world.
Up until this point you have been the center of your parents entire universe. You came in to our lives and with your very first breath redefined what it meant for us to be alive and who we are as people. You changed what it meant for me to be in love with your father. It was as if you coloured in and highlighted with your crayons exactly why and how much I love the man who loves me so much he wants to raise a family with me and chooses me to be the mother of his children. Your arrival connected me in a way I can scarcely describe to my own parents.
How we are lucky/blessed enough to have been entrusted you I can't really wrap my head around. But every day when I wake up, before my feet hit the floor I thank God I get to wake up and be your Mommy.
Now change has come to how you will experience being in this family of ours. Things wont be the same for you. At this point nothing can alter the fact that your world is about to be rocked.
There are enough years between your Aunts and I that I remember the minute I met your Aunt 'lissa. I remember becoming a big sister. My dear, that is one experience I can not deny you. No matter how hard those first few years were, the gift of siblings in your Moms life has been so important I can't imagine functioning without them. So here I sit. Holding your future brother (we think) in my body hoping that you get to experience all the wonderful things I get to because I have two partners in crime, love, loss and life in general. I am holding under my heart a person for you to learn to fight with, learn to make up with, learn to plot against your parents with.
As difficult as a change this may be I want you to know that you, my funny girl, are and will forever be that same center of our universe. Only a few hours (please) or days from now that center will be a little bigger and you will have another person there to help you even out the ratios between parents vs children. Keeping in mind the levels of neurosis your parents sometimes exhibit, that evening of the ratio can only be a good thing.
I can feel my heart right now multiplying in size as I think of you as a big sister. Love never, ever divides it can only multiply. The miracle of it really is that sitting here at my computer in the middle of the night I can feel it happening. I can feel it happening as this baby prepares to meet us all in person. I can feel my heart expanding in ways I don't quite have words for, but please know this; it is spectacular how much I love both you and your brother. As your great grandma used to say "Baby's bring their own love." and well darlin' girl, I think this boy is packing a double load.
I can't wait for you to meet him and I can't wait to show you how to be a big sister. I know you are going to be spectacular.
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Mango Lassi Pops
2 cups vanilla yogurt
1/4 cup white grape juice concentrate
2 large ripe mangoes, cut in chunks
1. Blend all ingredients in a blender or a food processor until smooth. Pour into paper cups and insert wooden spoons or popsicle sticks. Freeze for 6 hours, or overnight.
2. Peel off paper to serve.
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
I make cookies a lot. I figure if I am going to get fat I may as well get fat off of stuff I make. That way I know what my jiggle is made of.
I have tried many many different recipes. To be honest most of them have been chocolate chip cookie recipes. Thats because Regan refuses to put anything past his mouth that is in the shape of a cookie that does not contain said chocolate chips. It just wont happen. No matter how many gorgeous batches of Soft Molasses Cookies, Sinfully Cinnamon Cookies or Imperial cookies I make he will not eat them. So I am now the goddess of chocolate chip cookies. I am sure my recipe trial count is now in the dozens. By far the best I have come across is the one below. Tonight after enjoying one of these puppies warm from the oven I figured I would grant the internets the opportunity to follow my lead and indulge.
A few notes on cookies
- USE GOOD VANILLA!!!!!!! No artificial crap. Its crap people. Pure crap and alcohol. So as soon as it heats up the alcohol burns off and it messes the whole works up. Madagascar vanilla is the best.There is a reason this tip is first, because it is just that important.
- The middle rack is the place for them. Keeps the bottoms from burning the sugar in them.
- As for Cinnamon, Saigon Cinnamon is the one with the roundest of flavour and makes my mouth the happiest.
- When you are dropping your cookies onto the cookie sheet try to do so on a cool cookie sheet. That way your dough of the first few cookies wont have started to spread on you before you fill the sheet.
- Speaking of cookie sheets, if you can find them the ones without the sides are the best. They allow for more air flow I find and create a more even texture.
- Check your cookies in the last minute of recommended baking time. Obviously each oven if different so if you know yours is hotter 'en hell check more often. Pull them out when you see colour on the edges of the cookies below.
- If you want a chewy cookie pull them out right away when you see the edges begin to turn colour and then let them sit on the cookie pan for a few minutes before taking them off.
- Use a cooling rack for your cookies. It allows the whole cookie to cool evenly and can save some recipes for the dreaded soggy bottom cookie syndrome.
So on to the recipe!
Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 (4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 cups chocolate chips
- Preheat oven 350 degrees.
Combine flour and baking soda.
In a large bowl beat brown sugar, sugar, butter, shortening, pudding mix, vanilla, and almond extract.
Mix until well blended.
Add eggs and mix well.
Beat in the flour mixture.
Stir in chocolate chips.
Drop by rounded teasponful and bake 10-12 minutes.
Sunday, May 30, 2010
Not conducive for a person like my self to be encouraged to leave the house. So instead my lovely husband went of a fish run. He went to Fergies Fish and Chips at a local market place/tourist trap, The Forks. He brought home a fmaily bucket of chips and Pickerel fish. My Dr told me the safest fish for a pregnant lady such as myself is local caught Pickerel fish, so as its also Regan's favorite we sat down to a feast of grease and fish and potatoes. The amount of fish was enormous. It would have easily fed another adult or two. The amount of chip on the other hand, pretty sparse.
The fish itself I think suffered form the drive to our house. 90% of it was still crispy and delicious but 1% was already starting to get soggy. An odd aside, Regan was convinced that one of the small pieces we got was actually Halibut. It must have been left over from the previous batch in the fryer.
The french fries were perfect. The right level of salty and fresh cut. Over all I would give it a *** out of five stars. The price was right at $25.21 for a large portion for 3-4 adults, with plenty of fishy left overs, if you like your fish batter congealed the next day.
There was so much fish eaten by yours truly and the water being dumped on us from the sky that Kawaii Crepes didn't happen either. But I can say that after taking another perusal of their on-line menu, that will be changing very soon.
Saturday, May 29, 2010
Friday, May 28, 2010
This is one that I use often when I can't think of what else to make. Everyone in the house will eat it and you can add pretty much what ever strikes your culinary fancy. I often omit the sun dried tomatoes as I CAN"T STAND those suckers. Instead I throw in a couple of diced up tomatoes.
Other past additions include sautéed crimini mushrooms (yummy) canned asparagus (NOT yummy) extra Parmesan cheese (always yummy) corn (not yummy) diced then sautéed prosciutto (delicious) hot sauce (yummy but not toddler friendly) Asiago cheese (lets be real here I will eat any cheese with pretty much anything) are a few I have used int he past. As for the Cajun seasoning, Superstore sells it in a canister that has a grinder in the lid which I find provides even better flavour.
Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
- 4 ounces linguine, cooked al dente
- 2 teaspoons cajun seasoning
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 thinly sliced green onion
- 1-2 cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons chopped sun-dried tomatoes
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
Place chicken and Cajun seasoning in a bowl and toss to coat.
In a large skillet over medium heat, sauté chicken in butter or margarine until chicken is tender, about 5 to 7 minutes.
Reduce heat add green onion, heavy cream, tomatoes, basil, salt, garlic powder, black pepper and heat through.
Pour over hot linguine and toss with Parmesan cheese.
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
That was before I was messing around on YouTube with Isla a few weeks ago and came across this and this and this. Then I began to watch, and watch and watch. I have totally developed a girl crush on Crystal Bowersox. She is the best I have seen on the random moments of the show I have tuned in for, and is phenomenal on YouTube. Regan can't stand to watch with me because I have to constantly flip over whenever they decide to make the contestants engage in some sort of abomination of a musical medley or some sort of demented advertisement. But even still between all the channel flipping, the hair gel of a certain Mr. Seacrest and the shouting of "Dawg", I still found a new musician to follow and cheer on. Thats why tonight when that other guy won (Lee Dewyze) I was floored.
A relative pointed out the main body of the voting audience is teenage girls so it figures that the dude with the soulful eyes and strategically messy hair would win over the mom with the dreads.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
So I haven't posted on here in a very, very long time. But I wanted a way to document this and figured to trust what all the security guys say and believe that anything posted on the net is here forever.
Everyday miracles guys. Every freaking day miracles, thats what kids give you. That may make me sound like one of those kitty cat shirt wearing, Chicken Soup For The What Ever Soul reading woman, but its true. Today Isla said “Coltrane”. Now I know that wouldn't mean much to those out side of this house but here, where John Coltrane is the go to guy for background music its a big deal. She also sang along to her first REM tune. Ok, ok it was off a reality TV show and the guy singing it needed Isla to find the melody, but still my jaw dropped.
Kids this age are so intrinsically musical. Its in every cell of their being. We spend at least 10-15 minutes a night now dancing to something. Tonight it was to Coltrane and me doing the 'Manamana' song.
This all connects to what I have been thinking about a lot lately. What is our specific families culture? What defines our family as being different from another? I listened to a CBC radio program months ago, before Isla was talking, about how the misspoken words of children often become a marker in a families culture.
I hadn't ever really thought about each family having its own distinct culture and yet now I think we are making one day by day. Its in the Coltrane that plays in the evenings, the Lady GaGa (referred to in our house by Isla's name for her, Ba Ba Gace) that plays on the way to and from daycare every day in attempt to sooth the savage toddler beast. It's in the way we listen to Lou Reed on repeat during road trips and read Where the Wild Things Are, On The Day You Were Born, and Mama Mama until everyone in the house can recite them. I now call Macaroni and Cheese, “Cacamoni and Cheese” and strawberry flavored milk as “Bunny Juice”. Both of which are now served faithfully as every Saturday's lunch.
Although they maybe mundane details everyone of them seems to be creating this incredibly beautiful, detailed, multi-layered picture that I had no idea we were making. I guess instead of calling it an everyday miracle it should be called an incidental miracle. Because through all the mundane; pay the mortgage, pick up dog crap, throw the garbage out, trying to find at least one flipping pair of matching socks, no you can not eat that and don't put it in the dogs ear, the three of us have created something breath taking. Complicated as anything can be, as hard as hell, and as draining as a person can imagine or stand but still oh so precious.
Three years ago when I peed on a stick, saw two lines and then almost passed out on the john (and yes again I am shocked I am putting that into the technological ether) at the time I was focusing on how totally unprepared I felt to begin raising another human being. I questioned what right I had in creating and then developing another person when heck, “I cant even manage to make my bed or put my dirty clothes in the hamper.” what sort of credentials did I have for child rearing? But what I failed to see was that I wasn't creating a person like a plant. She wasn't going to be some sort of automaton who I had to mold into this perfect image. What we were and are creating is so much more beautiful, simple and possibly more terrifying, we are creating a family for Isla to grow up in.
Every single morning from the moment we put our feet on the floor in the morning Regan and I are creating family. Every morning when Regan makes Isla and himself toast and jam from the jam we made last year he is creating our culture and ultimately our family. Every morning when I run around begging the sock gods to find me just one blasted matching pair and finally settle on Isla going to day care with one florescent pink one and one stripy rainbow one and I wear a old mismatch pair of Regan's, I am creating culture. OK, its a culture of stocking feet chaos, but one to be proud of none the less.