Tuesday, November 25, 2008

thanksgiving is coming . . .

Thanksgiving is coming, so this naturally means . . . time to figure out the candy list for this year! The old standbys will be showing their faces - toffee, chews, dipped caramels - but I'm looking for some new truffle flavors. Or new candies to make in general. I really liked the raspberry truffles last year, so I think those ones make the cut again for this year. If you have any ideas for fun flavors - or new candies to try - hit me with them in the comments. Otherwise, let the voting begin!

image from Sweet Lu Cake Shop

Monday, November 10, 2008

more max

I've been thinking a lot again about the talk given by Elder Oaks in Conference Oct 2007 titled Good, Better, Best. Briefly, he talks about being conscious of choosing the BEST things for us and our families out of the myriad of good options out there. Whether or not you are 'churchy,' this is still good advice.

Somewhat ironically, I was thinking about this alot right after I had just posted about my new-found infatuation with a video game. Saturday afternoon while Katie and Alex were napping, I just relaxed with Max while he napped. I wrote a little, thought/day dreamed about stained glass projects I'd like to work on but won't for a while, read a little, and thought a lot. David may not believe this, but I didn't even tune into another new-found friend, the "Retro-Active' alternative music channel on the digital cable. And man is that a great music channel!

This is how Max and I spend Saturday afternoon. You can't get the full effect from that picture, but boy does that Max smell delicious. He hadn't even had a bath yet. It's too bad 'smell-o-vision' hasn't been perfected yet, because then you too would want to just gobble that boy up!

Believe me, I totally recognize the need for 'me time' in order to maintain what limited sanity I've got. And stained glass - and a variety of other projects - are part of how I do that - but I have really adjusted the amount of time necessary to stay 'being me' way down. I have been/and will be me for a very long time. These young versions of my kids will not last as long. Alex already looks like he should be driving a car. Katie talks like she's ready to start dictating her first novel. Max is already 30% bigger than when we brought him home. (Thank goodness I don't gain 30% of my weight in a month!)

I'm so grateful that I have the chance to stay home with them, and that I have a partner in molding them that thinks this is important too, and so he makes decisions/WE make decisions together so that that can happen. I'm grateful that Rog is always trying to find ways to spend more time together as a family; that he plays so much with the kids; that he feels a strong need and desire to hug his kids and tell them as well as show them how he feels about them. I love that he takes the time to include Alex and Katie in the 'man-tivities' already - knowing myself how much 'help' they provide sometimes.

That being said, I did have the parents bring up Guitar Hero Sunday night. I do still need to stand a fighting chance against Mark come Christmas! (By the way, Dad/Opa scored 25% and got booed off the stage on that same Poison song. But he did indeed try it!)

This photo is not a very good indicator of the magnificence of this boy's smile - the photographer really needs to work on her lighting choices and 'click' times - but the Max-ster has officially started smiling on purpose. Opa claims he got some real smiles Sunday night, but it wasn't official until he did it for me. He's been smiling in his sleep for weeks, but that's not nearly as gratifying as having him look at your face and flash one at you!

And by the way -thanks to Julie for reminding me - I updated the album to include more pictures. The newest ones are at the end.


In honor of Julie - who is enjoying some nice spring days and probably getting ready for the summer at the beach - here are a few fall pictures from the backyard. It is November and we have yet to see any snow down here! (There is a chance of changing that today.) This first picture was taken Nov 1, and Katie is wearing SHORTS! Max likes a little more coverage, but he too was enjoying the 70 degree weather.

Please don't ask me to explain that ridiculous hat that Katie is sporting - I can't stand it either. But then again, I'm not 2.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

time travel

picture from imageshack

Well, Mag was right once again.

While Mag was out here visiting us when Max hatched, she took a night off from ‘baby dancing’ to go down to Denver and hang out with some friends. When she got back she said they had spent a good amount of time playing Rock Band. I had the passing thought ‘What the? Are you guys 14-year-old boys or something?’

Mag, I ask your forgiveness.

Thursday mom came up and watched the kids, so Roger and I dined and then cruised Best Buy. Rog was looking for some boring computer thing for work, when my ears picked out the tones of Billy Idol’s White Wedding off in the distance. So I went a wandering. Rock Band, huh? Well, let’s just see what this is all about. I am no good on the drums. But the guitar? I’M A NATURAL! Roger and I played a few rounds, and would have probably closed the store down but we didn’t want to kill off mom entirely.

Friday night we headed up to Boulder to hang out with Oma and Opa – WRONG! We went up there to play Mark’s GUITAR HERO! When dad got home, he asked what we were up to. Katie’s response: ‘Mom and dad are rockin’ out.’That’s right, Katie. I can still rock.

Roger was going to put Guitar Hero on his wish list, until I KICKED HIS BUTT! Even on some ridiculous song by Poison. POISON! Seriously? Yeah, I nailed it. I just tried the ‘easy’ level, but did try medium on a little Pat Benetar ditty and STILL nailed it! All those years of violin lessons paid off after all. I guess it will have to go on my wish list – maybe when we draw names for the Reese family people will be feeling generous. Or just do a combined present for Roger and I. It’s just a suggestion . . .

NOW who’s the 14 year old boy?

Friday, November 7, 2008

not deceptive and way more delicious

It's a constant guessing fest, trying to figure out what Katie will eat for a given dinner. What works one night doesn't work the next time I try it, and forget about vegetables. She shares more with her father than just physical characteristics!

A while ago there was a book released by Jessica Seinfeld called Deceptively Delicious. The deception is to puree a variety of vegetables and then slip them into 'regular' kid-friendly fare. I pureed a bunch of different vegetables and tried adding them to whatever I was cooking - for the benefit of both for Katie and perhaps someone taller. I haven't stuck to this very rigidly - partly for lack of remembering to throw something in, and partly because I need to figure out some way for her to actually eat a recognizable vegetable and not just trick her all the time.

Earlier this week I busted out one of the pre-made mac-and-cheese numbers I had made in anticipation of Max's arrival. Adding pureed carrot actually helps it look more orange - more like the natural version that our friends at Kraft market. Hit with Alex, not with Katie.

Last night I was just going for something she would eat. The solution: pancakes with mini-M&Ms 'hidden' inside them. Every few bites she ate, she scored some squirty whipped cream on her finger. Dessert for dinner? Sometimes it's just about whatever I can make work. There were apples and peaches on the side - does this redeem the meal?