Tuesday, March 27, 2007

First tractor ride...

...also, A Return to Girl World.

We had another great weekend (first house hunting free weekend) with great weather. The grass needed mowing so Papa and Baby James were on the job. Here are a couple of pictures:
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James also got some hand-me-down toys from Mr. C. Isn't great having an older cousin?? He loved his walker. Kind of surprised the AAP allows such things.
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James also went to his first birthday party. One of the boys from Kindermusik turned one yesterday and his mom brought cupcakes. This brings me to the second topic of the day:

A Return to Girl World

I am reading this book, Queen Bees and Wannabes, about teen girls, cliques, and stuff. Hey, it is a very small library here so I gotta take what I can get! It talks about the rules girls follow and the social structure, etc. Its funny, I know that I was worried about a lot of these things growing up, but I don't remember it bothering me all that much. I think it is much more interesting that I have seen women act like this more recently. Since I have been staying home, I am never really around groups of girls. So, we were sitting around after Kindermusik yesterday eating cupcakes. James is of course, too young for cupcakes, so I was giving him a bottle and eating his cupcake. I broke a girl world rule, thou shall not eat and enjoy baked goods in the presence of other women because that gives the impression that thou is not trying to lose weight. In girl world, you are always trying to lose weight. Only the teacher and I finished our cupcakes, and she only did it after protest.

Usually I don't have to worry about what I eat because I am always running, swimming, or breastfeeding and its true, I should probably start thinking about it more. But after I finished my cupcake and realized that I had broken that rule, I felt so embarrassed, then mad. I mean really, eat your damn cupcake. It was good.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Got it!

It finally happened. We have a house under contract. It was a long, drawn out process until the end, with another offer coming in right as we were finalizing the terms. Man, what a night. Our poor realtor was running around trying to make sure we got this house. Crazy!

Here is a picture:
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Come visit any time!

We are so excited and so happy. Of course, it is 4am and I can't sleep. Now we have to worry about paying for it.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Big accomplishment

DS and I were driving back from taking Mr. Gilbert to the vet. I glanced in my rear view mirror and James had something blue in his mouth. "Where did he get something blue to put in your mouth?" I asked him. It turned out to be his sock.

When he was done chewing on his sock, he threw it out of the car seat. He then glanced down and had just an expression of pride in being able to take his sock off, and an expression of pure joy in his future great decision to make. "Should I take the other sock off, or should I play with my naked foot?" Naked foot went in the mouth.

It was so cute.

James is doing really good, although he is going through a destructive phase. He still just has 2 teeth, we saw a 3rd one, but it doesn't seem to be making any progress. I think he has been teething again lately: rosy cheeks, rubs his cheeks, rubs his ear, but he is really always teething. He rolls over like a champ and loves to play on the big peoples bed. James can sit up, but he isn't so good at it. I think his big fat belly gets in the way. I am currently putting away his 12 month clothes, some 18 month clothes, and buying 24 month outfits. He takes 3 naps a day on a good day and goes down at around 6:30. He does not sleep through the night, but that is ok. He eats 3 solid meals a day, and we are still breastfeeding.

I love my little boy. Here is a picture:
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Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Agonizing decision

We have been house hunting since December and never really been thrilled by any one house. There was always some thing wrong: too far, too expensive, too much needed to be done, too close to the road...you get the idea. I think because of problems with all of these houses, we messed around more than we should have and last night it happened again, a house we were considering is under contract. Our realtor "Lou" says that he would normally make a joke about these things, but after 3 or 4 times it is just not funny.

So last night Mark, James, and I go to look at another house (too much work needs to be put into it) and there is another house down the street that just came on the market. Because we are always a step behind everyone else, horrors upon horrors, I ask "Lou" to knock on the door to see if we can look at the house. They ask for 10 minutes to get it ready. While we are waiting, Mark and I wonder "hey, I wonder how much it is?" As the nice people are leaving, we get the stats and it falls into the "too expensive" category. Well, lets look at it anyways.

Love it. LOVE it. Except it has a pool. But really, can you rule out a house because it has a pool? It also has wood floors through out, and truth be told, I like carpet in the bedroom. But, it has a GAS STOVE. It is an older house, but has been taken care of. It really wouldn't need updating. LOVE IT.

Although it is a lot of money, it is still on the low side for Clemson. I tell you, it is really crazy here. Mark and I are responsible to a fault at times, but we are actually thinking about getting it. We can do it, it will be hard, we might need help, we might be eating a lot of rice, but we can do it. We are so sick about this, if the market was better we wouldn't be considering it, but if it was just slightly cheaper, we would have jumped on it.


Oh, and it has a wonderful screened in porch! but no garage, just a carport.

Here is the recipe for the "good karma" muffins I made for our realtor yesterday.

Sour Cream Coffeecake MuffinsRecipe
By : Cooking Light May 2006 - adapted by KK 3/20/07
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup butter -- softened
1/2 cup egg substitute
1 cup low-fat sour cream
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon
Preheat oven to 400°.Combine first 3 ingredients; set aside.Place granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 3 minutes). Add egg substitute; beat 3 minutes. Beat in sour cream, water, and vanilla.Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Make a well in center of mixture; add sour cream mixture. Stir just until combined.Place 3 tablespoons brown sugar mixture in a small bowl; set aside. Sprinkle surface of batter with remaining brown sugar mixture. Gently fold batter 4 times.Place 12 paper muffin cup liners in muffin cups; coat liners with cooking spray. Spoon batter into prepared cups. Sprinkle batter evenly with reserved brown sugar mixture. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove muffins from pan immediately; place on a wire rack. Cool 10 minutes.
Per Serving (excluding unknown items, based on 12 servings): 273 Calories; 8g Fat (25.4% calories from fat); 4g Protein; 47g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber

Monday, March 19, 2007

Happy Monday...

Well, after a super fun weekend, I had a crappy Monday. Yes, even us SAHMs (stay at home moms) have crappy Mondays. I just got started getting sick late last night and spent today feeling poorly and trying to tell the doctor I was feeling poorly and not getting any help. Things seem to be better now, so back to my super fun weekend.

Mark, James and I went for a "hike" at the SC botanical gardens. It was a little chilly, but spring was everywhere. Here is Mark and James with the ergo:
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Another pretty picture:
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Then we went to lunch at The Pendleton Coffee Company and Cafe. This is the best coffee house I have been to. I love Pendleton.

Made it to church where they had a musical worship of the seven last words of Chirst. It was very good. They had strings and soloist come in for this. I made it to the 4th word before I realized how hard the pews were.

That night we went to meet friends at the mall of Georgia. It is so good to get together with other families. This is why we moved back here.

I hope everyone else had a better Monday than I did.

Thursday, March 15, 2007


Annemarie Mable
6lbs 12 oz ,19 inches
March 15, 2007, 1:32AM
Congrats to Sis, BIL, and Mr. C!!

Ok, figured out how to edit, which I had to do 4 times to this short post. Here is a picture:
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Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Happy Pie Day! 3.14

The things you learn when you are living with a math teacher.

Just in case anyone was wondering, we lost the bidding war and we were very upset about it. We weren't so upset by the loss of the house, it was farther away then we would have liked, but we are just SO TIRED of house hunting and being disappointed. However, another house came on the market. It was pretty nice, could use a bit of work, but it was move-in-able. The location was GREAT. We had the contract ready to fill out and were discussing the terms...the phone rang...it was already under contract.

So, we are not sure what we are going to do. At this point, I feel that we would be settling for anything that is on the market right now. I think we decided to wait for the time being. Until then, I am homeless, jobless, and livin' with my parents.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Crockpot Monday

Just fired up the ole crock pot making the following recipe:

Slow Cooker Char Siu Pork Roast
From Cooking Light

Char siu is a Chinese version of barbecue. Serve with sticky or long-grain white rice and a steamed or stir-fried medley of bell peppers, carrots, snow peas, sliced baby corn, and water chestnuts.
1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
3 tablespoons ketchup
3 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger
1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon five-spice powder
2 pounds boneless Boston butt pork roast, trimmed
1/2 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
Combine first 8 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Place in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add pork to bag; seal. Marinate in refrigerator at least 2 hours, turning occasionally.
Place pork and marinade in an electric slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.
Remove pork from slow cooker using a slotted spoon; place on a cutting board or work surface. Cover with aluminum foil; keep warm.
Add broth to sauce in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 30 minutes or until sauce thickens. Shred pork with 2 forks; serve with sauce. Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 3 ounces pork and 1/4 cup sauce)CALORIES 227 (38% from fat); FAT 9.5g (sat 3.1g,mono 3.9g,poly 1.1g); PROTEIN 21.6g; CHOLESTEROL 73mg; CALCIUM 30mg; SODIUM 561mg; FIBER 0.4g; IRON 1.7mg; CARBOHYDRATE 12.7g Cooking Light, MARCH 2006

James had his 6 month check up Friday. He is in good health weighing in at 20 pounds, 5 oz, 28 inches long. I really need to buy new car seats!

Nothing else going on except we did lose the bidding war and spend the weekend wallowing in self pity. Good times.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Bidding War

Somehow, DH and I are involved in a bidding war. Well, not really. When our realtor (I'll call him LOU) told us there was another offer, we decided not to make any changes. We don't play games and if we lose the house, so be it, even though there isn't anything else. We have to move into a house soon because I didn't pack any of my capris and it is getting to be capri weather.

In better news, the family went to visit the in-laws this weekend and it was spring there. Here is a picture of the blooming flowers. So pretty!
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And James wanted say thanks to his Aunt K for his toy. He is finally able to play with it a little.
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Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Family photos

Hello all. Just thought I would share some photos of DS that were taken a few weeks ago. We had a lot of the family here and James had a great time meeting great-grandma, great-aunt, aunt, uncle, and cousin.

This is me and James. I am usually the one taking the picture, so I am happy to finally be in one.
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This is Proud Papa with James and cousin C.
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James and great-grandma. She definately had a way with him. She needs to move in!
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Hopefully this worked...

Friday, March 2, 2007

Make it stop

My mom asked me today to "write a blog" about how they need to stop talking about Anna Nicole Smith and that nobody cares to see the motorcade with her body head to the airport or needs the time table of the funeral. I have to say I agree, but I told her that blogging about it, even to say that I am tired of hearing about it, only adds to the problem. It is best to ignore it. But, here I am anyhow. I will say that if it is a short piece on this story, I tune it out, however if it is a long one with interviews with the mother, and boyfriend, and lawyers, etc, I turn it off. Take that into account Today Show producers.

Last night I made an oldie, but goodie Alton Brownies by Alton Brown on the Food Network.

Cocoa Brownies
Recipe courtesy Alton Brown
Soft butter, for greasing the pan Flour, for dusting the buttered pan 4 large eggs 1 cup sugar, sifted 1 cup brown sugar, sifted 8 ounces melted butter 11/4 cups cocoa, sifted 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1/2 cup flour, sifted 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Butter and flour an 8-inch square pan. In a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the eggs at medium speed until fluffy and light yellow. Add both sugars. Add remaining ingredients, and mix to combine. Pour the batter into a greased and floured 8-inch square pan and bake for 45 minutes. Check for doneness with the tried-and-true toothpick method: a toothpick inserted into the center of the pan should come out clean. When it's done, remove to a rack to cool. Resist the temptation to cut into it until it's mostly cool.

Um, I ran out of flour and cocoa powder, so I added about a cup of whole wheat flour. They still were tasty and now, a little more healthy. Yay!

The pan used in this recipe is key. Glass is best. I have a blue 8"x8" glass pan that works great. Last night I used a slightly bigger ceramic dish which seemed to do pretty well. I upped the amounts of butter, and um, flour to compensate. If you use a metal pan, it simply won't be as good.

As always, I baked at a slightly higher temp (325, but have done 320 and 315) and started checking it at 45 minutes.