Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Five Calamities in Five Hours

7:03 am
I was feeding the basher on my bed. The punk climbed up and sat on his knees on the edge of the bed. Although I was relieved that he wasn't sitting on top of me as he is wont to do when I am engaged with the basher, I suggested that he come a bit closer so he wouldn't be tempted to fall off the bed. Just as the words came out of my mouth, his little body surged off the side, head-first onto the wood floor.
Injury #1: He complained that his thumb hurt. No obvious signs of concussion.

8:37 am
Sometimes I fit the stay-at-home-mom cliche: sweatshirt, ponytail, flip flops. But once in a while, I try to look a little more presentable. Out came the curling iron. As I wrapped my long strand around the iron, my arm forgot that it needed to be out of the way of the hot stick.
Injury #2: Burn on left wrist.

12:01 pm
My punk requested "cheese toasties" (my man's name for open-faced grilled cheese, broiled in the oven) with his soup for lunch. What my punk wants, my punk gets. Sometimes. So, even though we only had one relatively thin slice of cheddar left in the fridge, I was determined to get two even thinner slices out of it in order to cover a slice of bread. As I grabbed my very long, recently-sharpened kitchen knife, I thought, "This could be dangerous. I wish I had a cheese slicer." I dug into the cheddar and whoosh-shlrbt! The blade had penetrated my finger! My first thought was, "Crap. My man will never let me live this down." (He's always after me about the way I wield my giant kitchen knives.) My second thought was, "If I need a stitch, will it heal before my next quartet gig in two weeks?"
Injury #3: A very bloody left forefinger.

12:11 pm
I was pacing the kitchen with my finger wrapped in its third paper towel, holding it over my head to try to stop the bleeding. Suddenly, the punk let out a pitiful, whiny scream. I looked over to find him hanging by his head from the tall kitchen stool! He had tried to dismount by sliding feet first, face-down in between the seat and the rod that acts as arm rest, but his large noggin got stuck.
Injury #4: Mostly his pride.

12:20 pm
As I was still a bit preoccupied with my blasted finger, I thought it would be best if I moved the punk to a safer chair. One a bit closer to the ground, without the capacity to seriously injure if he chose to dismount improperly. However, as this is another paragraph in my series of calamities, you know this chair turned out to be just as hazardous as the last one, right? He was on all fours: kneeling on the chair and leaning on his hands. The chair was quite close to the table, and it was twisted so the seat back met the table. Somehow, his hand slipped off the chair so he ended up with his head caught in between the seat back and the table, his chin hitting the table top as his arm surged toward the floor.
Injury #5: Mostly his pride again, especially since I couldn't stop laughing. It looked funny!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Looking at Leeks

I was mesmerized by the colors and patterns of nature while slicing these leeks for potato leek pizza. Isn't it marvelous that this beautiful thing came from the earth?

Friday, May 27, 2011

Sing Your Song

At age 11 3/4, I finally got what I had wished for for years. A little sister. I called her Babe and pushed her around the block in her stroller. We danced together in the room we shared. We shared a bunk bed until I got married. She was a pretty little blonde with curly hair and big eyes. One time, she looked like this:

Now look at her.

She is fiercely loyal and always dependable. She will rub your back when you are sad and play with your hair just because.

She has sausage toes. And beautiful blue/green eyes. She is athletic and adventurous. Silly and determined.

She is the punk's favorite aunt, with good reason. She'll run and wrestle and play and laugh and pretend and sing and tickle.

No one can make me laugh as hard as she can.

And in August, she is leaving home. Sing your song, Little Sis. Then call me and tell me all about it. Okay? Okay?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Thai Curry Vegetable and Tofu Soup

With my man out of town, I am taking the opportunity to try some new recipes that I know he won't eat. Tonight I chose a recipe that I ripped out of my April Real Simple: Thai Curry Vegetable and Tofu Soup. First I stuffed the basher into my Moby wrap, immediately inducing what I like to call a kangaroo coma. It has been proven impossible for him to stay awake for longer than 90 seconds in that thing.

The punk "helped" me for a while before retiring to his room. (Lemons and apples are not ingredients in this dish.)

Here we go...

1 Tbs. Thai red curry paste
1 tsp. grated fresh ginger
2 C vegetable broth
1 14-oz. can coconut milk
kosher salt
1/2 lb. mushrooms, sliced
2 carrots, halved lengthwise and sliced crosswise
14 oz. extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into cubes
4 oz. snow peas
2 Tbs. fresh lime juice
1/4 C torn fresh basil leaves
Asian chili garlic sauce, for serving (which I forgot, but will try next time)

Place the curry paste and ginger in a medium saucepan. Whisk in the broth, coconut milk, and 1 teaspoon salt and bring to a boil. Add the mushrooms & carrots to the saucepan and simmer until just tender, 3-5 minutes. Add the tofu and snow peas and simmer until the snow peas are bright green, about 1 minute more. Stir in the lime juice. Sprinkle with the basil and serve with the chili garlic sauce.

When my man is out of town, I often invite family or friends over to share in my bounty, especially if I make something besides fish sticks or mac & cheese. It gives me pleasure to cook for someone, and they pay me back by entertaining the punk and/or holding the basher... and making yummy noises. That's very important to a performer like me. My brother Michael didn't disappoint.

Mmmm... just enough left for lunch tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Sister Day

Once upon a time, a 7 year-old girl sat in the room she shared with her sister, 12 years her senior. She was considering the current holiday, Mother's Day. She asked her big sis, "There's a Mother's Day and a Father's Day. Is there a Sister Day?" Big Sis said, "No, but we could make one." And behold! Sister Day was born.

Little Sis and I have celebrated Sister Day every year since then. We exchange gifts, we plan activities, we spend time.

She gave me this awesome mirror and a mug with a monogrammed M, perfect for hot chocolate.

I gave her the necklace in my friend Amy's blog post, seen here.

Amy also spent some time with us, taking pictures for Little Sis, who is graduating from high school in a few weeks.

Then Sister and I went out for lunch (Star of India), hot chocolate (Starbucks), a stroll (The Gateway), a movie (Something Borrowed), and dinner (Happy Sumo). Ahhhhh, bliss!

Then I had to get home to my baby before my boobs exploded.

If you have a sister, I highly recommend starting a Sister Day tradition of your own. Join us next year on the Saturday after Mother's Day. Spread the Sister Love!

Friday, May 13, 2011

12of12: May (Thursday)

On the 12th of each month, I take 12 photos to document my day. Hello May!
{Click on the block of photos to enlarge.}

1. The boys had a bit of a rough night and an early morning so I didn't get up at 6:15 to work out. This just meant that I took the double stroller out at 8:00 to hike the hills in my neighborhood. It was a lovely morning with puffy clouds, and the blossoms are boasting like peacocks! 2. As I was drying my hair in my bathroom, I looked over to find the boys like this on my bed. 3. My brother David took a break from work and brought Jimmy John's sandwiches to enjoy in the sunshine. 4. The punk cried over his spilled milk and demanded a new shirt. 5. Then David played in the backyard with the punk... 6. While I took the basher grocery shopping. 7. By afternoon, the clouds had disappeared and there was nothing but clear, blue skies. 8. I got exactly 5 bites and 2 1/2 paragraphs into my "me" time before the basher loudly announced that he was awake and hungry. 9. I forgive him. 10. Turkey burgers with black bean mango salsa for dinner, and Skookies with vanilla ice cream and homemade chocolate sauce for dessert. 11. My man at the grill. 12. Migraine.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

A Very Useful Engine

I walked into the basher's bedroom to find the punk standing on a stool in front of the changing table. He had his toy Thomas the Train on the table and was cleaning him with a couple of diaper wipes. As he wiped him down, he said, "Ewwwww!" When I asked what he was doing, he said he was "changing Thomas." Then he proceeded to grab the bulb syringe, which we call the booger sucker, held it up to Thomas' nose and told me that he was "getting Thomas' boogers." It seems he has it all down. Get ready, Mr. Bell. We're going on a hot date and hiring our 2 year-old to babysit!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


A few months ago, my mom kidnapped me, bound me with rope and duct tape, and forced me to sign up for Kindermusik. Actually, she gently brought it up every time she talked to me until I finally looked into it. Then she paid half the tuition. The villain.

It is the punk's very favorite thing to do every week. It's tied with church for first place. Really. After sacrament meeting on the basher's blessing day, we told the punk we were going home to celebrate with our family and friends instead of going to nursery, which he loudly protested. Then he took off running through the crowds, which did not so easily part for me, a grown-up, and quickly made his way all the way to the other side of the building and down the stairs, and then down another long hall, to his final destination: the nursery room. He wasn't happy when I finally caught up to him and detached him from the toys.

Anyway... Kindermusik is fun. The punk gets to explore all kinds of different instruments, songs, movements, activities, and stories.

We listen to his Kindermusik CDs almost exclusively in the car. He knows all the songs by heart, and he can often be heard singing them while he plays by himself.

(The kids in the photo below were supposed to hold onto the band with the grown-ups, but they all thought it would be more fun to lie in the middle and watch us act like fools.)

He always gets a supercool stamp on both his hands at the end of each class.

The only downside to this Kindermusik business is that I walk around all day singing things like, "Fiddle dee dee, fiddle dee dee, the fly has married the bumblebee." Someone please pass the Adele!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Scenes From a Monday Morning

At approximately 10:45 am, immediately following the basher boy's second breakfast, I stumbled upon this scene. It included smashed tortilla chips, an opened bag of Easter candy, and partially peeled garlic.

At approximately 10:46 am, the punk learned how to mop the floor by hand.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Basher's Blessing Day

Asher Basher was fortunate to have sun (!) on his blessing day. We had lots of support from family and friends who came to our church for the blessing, then joined us for brunch at our home afterwards. I was busy with my cinnamon rolls and the rest of the spread, and forgot to take pictures of our guests and the grub. It was delicious. You can take my word for it.

After the celebration and our Sunday afternoon naps, my man and the punk kicked a ball around in the sun (!) while the basher and I sat in the sun (!). Although chilly, it finally felt like spring.

Sunny sun sun (!)
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