Monthly Archives: March 2009

…and so it begins!

Frances, would you like some water? No!

Frances, let’s go have a diaper change. No!

Frances, would you like to come upstairs with mommy? No!

Frances, would you like some yogurt? No!

Frances, can we put on your pajamas? No!

Frances, give daddy a kiss goodbye. No! Please? No!

I didn’t see this coming. Isn’t this supposed to be part of the terrible two’s, and by two’s I mean 2 and not 17 months!? It is rather funny though, often when she says no I say “why not”, so no becomes “no, why not”! Is it going to get worse? When do the no’s turn to tantrums? I suppose I will fumble my way through this next stage the way I do everything else and hope for the best!!

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Delightful

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With proper walking well established and a closet bursting with pretty sweet thrifted dresses, I have finally begun to embrace the girlishness in the daughter I secretly wished for. It could have something to do with the cute shoes (her first pair of real shoes!) and a little to do with the spring weather we have been experiencing. Either way, isn’t she lovely!

Can I just tell you how hard it is to capture a small child who is constantly “verking” on a still camera!!

Naan maan!

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Have you ever baked your own naan bread? It is one of the most wonderful treats ever and I highly suggest you do! I guarantee that you will never purchase any from the supermarket again, it is so easy and tastes much nicer.

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There are tons of recipes available and many can be found on the inter-net. I have tried a few and like the one from the Joy of Cooking best. It uses egg and yogurt as the wet ingredients which I think gives a nice tangy taste and soft bready texture. I used a pizza stone for baking my naan and really think it’s an invaluable kitchen tool, especially if you make your own pizza.

Combine in a mixing bowl or food processor (with a dough blade):

2 cups bread flour

1/2 tsp salt

1 1/4 tsp active dry yeast (instant yeast)

Add:

2 tbsp melted butter or vegetable oil

3/4 cup yogurt or buttermilk, at room temp.

1 tsp to 1 tbsp water as needed.

Mix until a soft ball of dough is formed. Kneed for 10 min. until the dough is smooth and elastic. Place dough in an oiled bowl and cover with palstic wrap to let rise at room temp for about 1 1/2 hours. Dough should double in size.

Punch dough down and divide into 4 pieces (or more if you want smaller naan) Roll into balls and let rest for 10 min.

Place a baking stone or inverted baking sheet in the oven and preheat to 475″f. Roll out each ball of dough into an oval 8-10 inches long and 1/4 inch thick. Brush the tops with 1-2 tbsp melted butter.

You can also sprinkle 2 tbsp minced scallions or 2 tsp sesame or poppy seeds on the tops.

Place the dough one at a time onto the baking stone or sheet and bake until each oval gets puffy and just begins to turn golden, 6-7 min.

Remove and eat!

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My mother’s birthday was this past weekend, so I baked her naan and made this amazing lamb tagine to go along with it. So good!! If you don’t eat lamb, try it with chicken or chickpeas. Oh, I also added almonds, dried apricots and dates. To top it all off I also made a Montana’s Mom’s Dynamite Cheesecake from The Moosewood cookbook. Best cheesecake recipe ever, by far!!

Knitwit twit twit.

I have been on some tangents lately. The first one has to do with knitting, the second one I will tell you about another day.

After perusing Ravelry in a mindless way looking for something to catch my fancy, I kept returning to this silk kerchief. When I checked out all the beautiful variations other people had produced I felt the need to knit one myself.

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Now for those of you who are not in the knitting know, yarn is now made to self pattern or stripe. Yes, even knitting can be made lazy. Just cast on,  knit knit knit, and the yarn does all the work for you. I have a love hate for this yarn myself, it always looks very beautiful and seductive all skeined up so neatly, but when it’s knit up I find it to be slightly gaudy. As much as I enjoy color, I feel like I am more of a plain Jane. When I began knitting I kept wondering to myself, do I really liked what I’m seeing. I found myself excitedly waiting to see what color emerged from the ball next and well, maybe I could like what was happening. When I finished working the main garter stitch pattern I added a lace border.

Our Sunday afternoon knitters club had a bit of a knit along with the same project. It was fun to see how diverse the same pattern could end up just by using different colors and borders. Check out missknits lovely picot edge!

So, whether I really liked the final outcome or not, I loved knitting it so much that I started another one right away!

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Time for a haircut!

For the same reason I dislike small babies dressed up like adults, I am not crazy about very young girls with hair baubles and barrettes. I think they are impractical and uncomfortable. I like for a small child to move freely, unencumbered by silly frills and fancies. Nothing drives me more crazy then watching a baby learning to crawl in a fancy dress, only to become tangled and tripped up by the inhibition some crazy person thinks is cute. Don’t ever get me started on those hideous garter belts often seen on the heads of bald babies, I can’t help but feel utter embarrassment for the poor tots!

So after many well meaning suggestions on the use of clips in Franny’s longish growing hair I decided it was time for a haircut. Josh wasn’t so sure about cutting her lovely little tresses but after the job was done he agreed that she looked ever so sweet with it tidied up in the back. Well I couldn’t leave well enough alone, so this morning I decided the bangs could also use a little trim. I may have taken a little more off then intended, but they will grow back. I have to say though, her beautiful face really shines without all that silly hair it the way!!

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“Where is she?”

Is what Frances frequently asks while she is searching for something, to which she will reply upon finding whatever it is “here she’s”.

Well, we had our first major cold last week and that pretty much took the wind out of my sails. We’ve been extremely lucky, really, to have made it this far without much more then a sniffle. Those sleepless nights with a small child full of snot aren’t very fun, not to mention nursing the poor thing back to sleep! Glad that’s all behind us, spring is almost here and the sun is shining so brightly through our windows!

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Wow, this girl is growing so big, and changes every day. Our conversations are becoming a little less one sided, we understand each other so well. Playtime is really becoming fun and more interactive. It involves a lot of cooking, cleaning and feeding the animals and baby dolls. Not hard to see who she imitates! I love watching her go about her business, she is such a nurturer, my little mama bear!

Isn’t it exciting to watch the self confidence emerge. This same tiny girl who just recently would not leave her mothers side much less let me out of her sight is now so happy to skittle around exploring her world. When we go tho the library she could care less about me except to check in every now and again to say ” here I am mom!” I am glad she feels comfortable to scout about, knowing that I will be there when she needs me.

Word are beginning to string together; feed self, wash face, stir soup… sometimes even three words make it in there! With a little help Frances can sing Bah Bah Black Sheep and Frera Jacques. Books are still a constant source of entertainment. We have finally graduated to paper books which comes as a great relief to me, now we can get into something with a bit more substance. Her attention span is growing longer, so we can get through something like Green Eggs and Ham without any squirming.

Here’s something funny, I have made pizza maybe 4-5 times, the first few times she wasn’t interested in it at all but now it is her favorite food. When she is asked what’s for dinner, the reply is always pizza! What is it with kids and pizza?