Tuesday, November 27, 2012

new words


Ben is at this very exciting phase right now. He is saying new words almost every day. I love this phase! (He also happens to be cutting his first set of molars. Though 3 have broken through, he's still in a lot of pain. I hate this phase!)

This week, we were reading Diego's Wolf Pup Rescue. He pointed to Dora and told me, "Doooraaa!"

Today, as I was feeding him hotdogs and green peas for lunch, he said he wanted "Mo' ot-gah," which I determined meant "more hotdog."

If I'm not sure what he means, I ask him, "Did you say ---?" If I'm wrong, he just repeats himself. If I'm right, he grins, says, "Yeeeeaaaah," and starts laughing.

He also said juice for the first time today and crackah (cracker) yesterday. If he doesn't know what to call a food or drink item, he calls it an apple. Well, it's more like "app-pool."

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

tastes of home

A few years ago, I started writing down all of my favorite recipes in one notebook. This was before Pinterest. I had some recipes bookmarked on the internet, some saved in a Word doc, some on recipe cards, and others in recipe books. My recipe notebook is my one spot, which I can access even when the power is out and the computer battery is dead, even when there is no internet connection because the signal is bad, etc. 

When we moved here, we brought our Betty Crocker recipe book - there's a lot of great stuff in there which we haven't even tried yet, plus basic cooking guides (how long to broil a steak?). And we brought my trusty recipe notebook. Mostly, I don't cook supper from recipes. I remember more or less how it should go and approximate something similar to the recipe. But sometimes I need a real recipe, especially when it comes to breads. 

One of the hardest things about living outside of Texas is the complete lack of acceptable tortillas. We have found adequate tortilla chips, but the tortillas we've found are either inedible or more like a big super thin wrap, rather than a fluffy, chewy flour tortilla. Then someone pinned this on Pinterest, and our lives were improved. (If you don't feel like clicking it, it's a recipe for flour tortillas.)

Unfortunately, I don't have a cast iron skillet. I have seen some here, but they all have grill bumps (is there a better word for that?) on the bottom. If you're cooking meat, the grease drains off a bit, and the meat ends up looking like it was cooked on a grill. But it does not work for making tortillas (or cornbread - still working on that one). I just use my nonstick skillet over med-high heat.

Welcome to Taco Tuesday.

Thursday, November 8, 2012


I've spent a Thanksgiving outside of the US before. It was the worst Thanksgiving ever, to be honest. On the plus side, we decided to celebrate Thanksgiving on New Year's Eve, and that made for the best New Year's Eve.

When it's the year for my siblings to spend Thanksgiving with our parents and Christmas with their in-laws, we often have Christmas at Thanksgiving, and we call it "Thanksmas." Actually I think we also had a Thanksmas between Thanksgiving and Christmas when we were expecting Nate and his 4-week-older cousin. Anyway, the point is that we don't get too caught up in the actual dates and celebrate holidays when we can be together. This year, as was the first year I was out of the country for Thanksgiving, is a Thanksmas year.

But this year, I'm actually looking forward to it. Not that I'm not missing their celebration, but two things: 1) we'll be there in a matter of weeks - more than one month but less than two. 2) we're going to have a big party for our Maisha Kamili Kids the Saturday after Thanksgiving, complete with introduction to Thanksgiving. I'm excited to get all of these kids together at our house. AND I'm also excited to introduce them to Thanksgiving, though I'm not sure they'll be adventurous enough to try our T-Day foods.

Thanksgiving past:
Our painful family photo from last Thanksgiving
2010, of course Monkey made an appearance
2009, comparing bumps after Thanksgiving dinner
2008, we'd just gotten engaged

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

look at my blog for a minute...

^^There's a new banner up there. I think it looks cool.

Also up there ^^ is a Scripture Memory tab. This is where I keep track of the verses Nate has memorized and will memorize. There's a Maisha Kamili tab, too, but it doesn't always work (what the heck, blogger?).

At the bottom, I changed the silhouette family to an actual picture of us. (How do you do a down arrow? v?)

Over there --> is a ticker for Maisha Kamili's land fundraiser. We have 40 days left!

You'll find more about Maisha Kamili at: