Tuesday, July 30, 2013

How I Cooked It: Summer Squash and Tomatoes

Yellow squash and ripe red tomatoes just scream SUMMER! When you have an abundance of both, make this for supper.

Summer Squash and Tomato Tart

I clipped this recipe from Food and Wine years ago, and I have idea why I haven't made it until now. It's so good!

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Saturday, July 27, 2013

I Can Play the Piano

Well, she can bang on it at least.

YouTube Video

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Friday, July 26, 2013

11 Months Old

Our girl
I took these pics on July 13th. Our new favorite thing is to bring the activity center outside on the deck in the late afternoon on Saturday and hang out. A couple of beers or glasses of wine for mom and dad. Lydia likes being outside, and Walle gets extremely jealous. I'm learning how to work my camera in manual mode. The photos above are proof that I might be getting the hang of it. Usually the sun behind the photograph's subject is a recipe for disaster. I definitely have not "figured it out" yet, but I'm getting closer.

I can't believe my girl will be a year old soon. Just three more weeks now. I don't know if it is having her or just getting older in general, but time is flying. Since we don't travel like we used to on the weekends, the weekends kind of run together. Before I know it another month has passed. I do miss traveling. The pre-baby me would have been outta here in Chicago or New Orleans this weekend. Work has been busy, and I need a baby-free vacation. Unfortunately that likely won't happen in the near future. Hopefully by year's end Chip and I will break free for a bit. We still haven't spent a night away from her together since she came home from the hospital. One or the other of us has always been with her.

And that's not to say that Lydia is misbehaving or being difficult or anything like that. She is generally a perfect angel. But like most babies, our baby likes routines. Wake up, change diaper, bottle, play, breakfast, nap, wake up, change diaper, get dressed, play, lunch, play, change diaper, bottle, nap, wake up, change diaper, play, dinner, play, bath, pajamas, story time, bottle, bedtime. Sleep and repeat. Whew. It's exhausting.

So what's new this month? So much! In addition to her sitting up on her own, Lydia is THIS CLOSE to crawling. She's has added two new words: cat and duck. Along with mamma, daddy, and hey, she's up to five words. We're working on ball and dog next, but so far she hasn't said those. She has a Hello Kitty stuffed animal, and Chip calls it her Hey Cat toy since she can't say hello or kitty yet. Lydia has eight teeth now. Four on the top and four on the bottom.

Her feeding schedule hasn't changed at all since last month. We still spoon feed her baby food most meals, and offer her finger foods also. Her favorite finger foods are cantaloupe, blueberries, and butter beans. Sometimes she refuses to be spoon fed and wants to feed herself, so we've offered her cubed boiled potatoes, bread, pasta, kiwi, cubed steamed sweet potatoes, fruit popsicles made with pureed cantaloupe, blueberries, and yogurt. Probably a few more things I can't remember. I have got to do better with offering her finger foods, but it is so damn messy. She gets half of what we give her in her hair, ears, nose, chair, or on her clothes.

Lydia is still a pretty good sleeper most nights. Some nights she is good with being held and rocked to sleep and is out like a light in 10 minutes. Some nights she wants to squirm, so we put her to bed awake. On those nights she sometimes whines, sometimes cries, and sometimes plays quietly then falls right to sleep. When Lydia wakes up in the middle of the night, generally she'll put herself back to sleep. One or two nights a week she'll get really worked up and crying, so one of us will have to go in there and fix what's wrong - diaper change or runny/stuffy nose or whatever.

Lydia has outgrown all her 6 month pajamas and is in 9 month pajamas. She's graduated to size 3 diapers. Another milestone is that we had to lower the crib mattress. I knew it was time when she woke up from her morning nap and tried to do this:

Pulling up on the crib
She hasn't tried that trick since we lowered the mattress. She is pulling up on us and on an ottoman that we have in our bedroom. Her other favorite games to play are to pull all of her books off of the low shelf of her changing table and to take toys out of her toy basket. Her favorite toy these days is her princess hand puppet that I like to call Princess Kate.

My favorite mom moment this month was sitting on the deck at the Nantahala Outdoor Center (aka Slow Joe's, Pourover Pub, Big Wesser BBQ & Brews, or WHATEVER they are calling it this year...), a soft rain falling, listening to the water, sleeping baby in my arms taking her afternoon nap. Gotta love that.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Vacation 2013

Our mountain getaway

The sunny deck

View of the lake from the deck
The family room
Playing with Lydia
Happy baby
Bumbo makeshift high chair

Family photo

Fun on the pontoon boat
Lydia and Nana
Lydia, Nana, and Grandpa
Nantahala River
Lydia and Chip at the NOC

Vacation was incredible! There's nothing in the world like river time. Unplugged time. Family time.

We rented a lake house on Nantahala Lake this year. We really enjoyed staying on the lake last year, and decided to give it another try. It is wonderful to wake up to fog on the water. To drink morning coffee on the deck and watch the sun rise over the mountains. In the evening, sunset paddles on the lake with a cold beer are the best.

Nantahala Lake is really quiet and secluded. No cell service. No internet. We really got to wind down and spend time together. We cooked out every night. We took a day trip to Asheville one day. Lydia was an angel. We forgot her bottle and had to buy her a sippy cup when we got there. She did fine.

We took duckys down the river on Tuesday and a raft on Thursday. Big fun on both trips. We didn't make it to the fire tower this year. Maybe next year.

All in all it went way too fast.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Fun With Silk Scarf

Lydia was really into playing with this scarf tonight. No telling why. We've had it in her "discovery basket" before and she never showed much interest in it.

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Tuesday, July 09, 2013

I Can Sit Up!

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Saturday, July 06, 2013

Big Big Milestones

Lydia is growing and changing every day! She's on all fours these days, rocking back and forth. She'll be crawling in no time.

Lydia said, "Mamma" while we were on vacay. My mother-in-law told me that Lydia said it all day the Tuesday we were on the river (June 25). I wasn't sure I believed her until I heard it for myself. I've tried to get video of it, but none yet.

Then, barely a week later, Lydia said, "Dada" over and over in her sleep on Thursday night! I liked that Lydia was calling for Daddy at 4 am instead of Mamma. Haha.

Then, this afternoon Chip's mom was baby sitting again while Chip and I ran errands. Apparently she left Lydia rolling around on her back for a minute, and when she came back Lydia was sitting up. I can't wait to see that trick!

I'm gonna try to get some video and post clips of all of this soon.