Sunday, October 19, 2008

What I've been up to...

My camera ran out of battery again and since the battery that came with the camera is not rechargeable, I had to go BUY another one, buy a recharger, and then...recharge it. Going to a store that is not a grocery store is such a huge pain to me that those kinds of errands can get put off for months in this house. One time my husband needed a certain kind of hair gel, (which didn't come from the grocery store) and it took me so long to get it that he just finally got a different kind of hair cut so that it wasn't necessary anymore. Oops.

Well, I've been busy lately. Busy, but I hate to blog without pictures (I'm very visual and I know enough to know that I'm only a LITTLE bit interesting and that I need the pictures to capture my audience if happens at all). So here is the run down of the blog entries I would like to post, and then I'll write more specifics about each one later.


First of all, I've been reading this book (slowly, slowly...I'm a very slow reader and I always read about 4 books at once, so that assures that any one given book will take me a year to read). This one is great, but it's another one of those nutrition books that makes you feel like you have to go ravage your cupboards, throw everything out, and start from scratch. Then you feel like you have to repent before God for feeding your family "fake foods" for too long and completely reinvent the way you've been eatting. I've been leaning towards this kind of eatting for a while, but reading this book makes me feel like I have to go full-balls and really get my own cow to milk in the back yard. That may be against the condo association rules.

Nina Planck's book will convince you that we should eat like cave men, basically. That we need meat and dairy and vegetables (but NOT to be a vegetarian) but that they need to be in their most UN-processed form. And I don't mean "no lunchables or spaghettios". I mean drinking only unhomogenized, unpasteurized milk which you can only get from joining a milk co-op and becoming part of a cow-share program, (since raw milk is illegal to sell, you have to partially own your own cow and then "share" the milk rather than sell it). Or, you can go to the tiny store I found which sells it but only under the guise that it's "not for human consumption...pet use only". Nod, wink. More later on the weird nutrition stuff that has been going on around here...

Secondly, I've been attending several "theme" birthday parties for kids. For some reason, I'm horrible at throwing kid birthday parties. I think of myself as pretty good with adult dinner parties, but I can't quite throw a good kid one. I think partially I'm bad at it because I don't have a lot of space in my house (or yard) and kid birthdays require lots of activity. Also, our friend's kids are such different ages that I'm always throwing a birthday party for bizarre age groups all together. Last year, Sammy's birthday party had 2 year olds all the way up to 10 year olds. The older boys played football in the alley, my husband tried to get the younger ones into a bonfire of sorts in the backyard where they roasted marshmallows, and the mothers with babies followed around behind their children thinking "why did we come to this party?" It was weird. Next year, I think I'll break down and do a location party of some kind. Maybe at a hotel pool or something...

But, I digress because what I really want to show is how cute this knight and princess birthday party was. My friend Julia has been the queen of theme parties since she was a resident assistant in our college dorm room, and her children have fantastic parties. More later...

This is called chicken and bean cassoulet with polenta. My friend, Brigitte, made something like it but couldn't really give me the recipe. She's all "a little of this and a little of that"...so I just googled "cassoulet" and figured it out by myself. I change some of the recipe because of what I usually have around (and to make it good) but it's pretty darn delicious and makes the house smell like a fabulous restaurant. It's kinda a pain in the butt to make, I'm not gonna lie, but it's worth it. And...it has wine in it, which gives you the excuse to start drinking red wine while you're cooking it...even if you have to start cooking at 3 in the afternoon, right?


This is the view from the balcony of Claire's friends house. Envy again creeps in the corner waiting to attack me. Isn't that a proverb or something? This house is the kind of house that makes me feel like I have split personalities. I was just done coveting my friend Julia's big backyard and fall trees when I left the FAR west suburb of West Chicago on Saturday morning, only to go straight to another birthday party located in a huge lofty home with a roof-top deck in a Chicago city neighborhood called Wicker Park. I loved it. It was so "me" if "me" wasn't also obsesed with living on a farm out in the country. It was lofty and light and open but also with a little southwestern-y feel to it. Oh and a tiny bit modern. Anyway, the point is that you walk out onto this HUGE deck from their family room (yes they have a living room AND a family room...sigh) and all of a sudden you have the best of both worlds: beautiful outdoors mixed with a beautiful view of the city. I have some funny stories to tell about myself and this party though...a recon mission of sorts.


And lastly, as usual, I'm trying to keep my crazy kiddo, Sam, out of trouble. Here he is with a bear he made from a mold and a lump of play-doh. Which would be fine, except that it was his sister's play-doh and he mixed all the colors together when she wasn't looking which devastated her. I'd like to say he's doing better with his behavior, but no. The other day, when I picked him up from his school, the teachers were laughing and informed me that Sammy was playing in the sandbox when he suddenly stood up, dug a big hole, pulled his pants down, peed into it, and then covered it all back up with sand. They said "did you teach him that?" No, I did not.

He's so cute when he's sleeping though. You should see him. You'd almost think he was a regular human being then. But he has a lot of years of "reigning it in" ahead of him.

1 comment:

Mary said...

Ok....I'm on the edge of my seat...would love to read the stories involved with each picture!!