Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Simple things: a bath

We took this inflatable duck tub to Ethiopia to bathe Taye in (they only have sinks or showers there). We brought it home and kept using it so we could bathe him separately from everyone else in case he had any parasites/rashes/bugs, etc. Good thing we did because he tested positive for giardia. Until he has enough negative tests, we will continue to bathe him in the duck. (This involves thoroughly sanitizing his ducky tub, bath toys, and the bathtub every time we give him a bath)

Ducky tub

The most challenging part of bathing Taye is taking good care of his hair. First we lather with “Dark and Lovely” shampoo.

Next we have to comb or pick through his hair to try to get out tangles or snarls.

pick/comb out snarls
Apparently we need to lather once more (I think it feels good to rub his head after all the pulling from combing out his super gnarly curls)

lather a little more, apparently
Rinse. (He really IS smiling here—just another of Taye’s “funny faces”)

Oh, it's not THAT bad!
Next up: Product!

We “schmear” this kid with lotion from heat to toe. Literally.

covered in lotion
Pick through the hair yet again.

I do it myself!
Rub on some “Africa’s Best” hair oil.

Rub on some Africa's Best hair oil
Then we goof off a little bit. Mommy cannot WAIT until he can pull off the pick-in-hair look!

Pick in hair
Finally, we are “all done”!

lookin' good, but not done...yet...

…and I’m exhausted.

Thankfully we only have to do the bathing/hair washing part twice a week.

Friday, February 06, 2009

In the words of Liz Lemon...

I want to go to there.

From now on, you can meet me at

Thursday, February 05, 2009

That's better

Oh my, this is much better. I think I wasn't writing as much because it was very hard to read the highlighter yellow print on the electric purple background I had previously chosen for my blog.

I'm not thrilled with this template yet, but at least it's a step in the right direction. Having everything go from from top left to bottom right has definitely made me feel a lot more balanced.

I'd love to have Dan get me all designered up so my blog better reflects who I am, but he's one busy guy.

Hopefully I'll get more up here soon. Doing lots of thinking about rebuke and correction, the phenomenon that is Facebook, and some pretty crazy stuff that's happened to us recently.

Alas, Thursday night TV is beckoning and I need some brain-mushing to happen to help assuage my headache. And just plain entertain and relax me.

Then a few more chapters of Suite Fran├žaise, and off to la-la land before working the Auto Show tomorrow.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Book Review: This is Your Brain on Joy

This Is Your Brain on Joy by Dr. Earl Henslin [Product Image]

I just finished reading This Is Your Brain on Joy: A Revolutionary Program for Balancing Mood, Restoring Brain Health, and Nurturing Spiritual Growth.

I was surprised that I looked forward to reading more about my brain each night. Written so that a non-medical person can understand the brain, its functioning, and how it relates to behavior, you are led on a virtual tour of your brain complete with photos of brain scans showing what normal brain function in each area looks like as well as what abnormal function looks like as well.

I appreciated the humor, science, medicine, research, and the applicable sections in each chapter which recommended how you and your physician can best help you overcome brain function challenges using nutrition, supplements, medication, scripture meditation, aromatherapy, exercise, music therapy, cinema therapy (lists of movies) as well as listing additional resources for further reading and study.

I was reminded that taking care of my body and charge of my health is within my own reach. That understanding brain function is becoming more and more understandable. That things like anger, ADD, depression, and anxiety are brain illnesses that are easily treated and that medication is not the sole option for treatment.

Although there was a lot of talk about the SPECT scans (SPECT = Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography), it was balanced with other forms of evaluation and therapies.

I have re-started taking Omega-3 fish oil tablets, downing handfuls of fresh blueberries, ensuring plenty of "good fats" in my diet, trying to rest more, remain hydrated, not depend on caffeine so much, and know that exercise would really give me a boost but one step at a time is about all I can do.

On a final note, I loved the raised imagery on the cover.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Our kids are cute

(1) Liam bouncing at Elliot's birthday party
(2) Elli trying on a size 6 dress with wishful thinking
(3) Addi and a cupcake at Elliot's birthday party

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Something new--making flour tortillas

Flour tortilla recipe (makes 8)
  • 2 cups flour (all-purpose or bread flour, cake flour should be avoided)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 3/4 cup warm water
  • 11/2 tsps salt

I mixed all the ingredients in my KitchenAid using the pastry paddle 'til it was a nice stretchy ball of dough.

Then I divided the dough into eight round-ish balls.

While heating up the heaviest frying pan I own over medium heat (Rachael Ray always says have the pan waiting for you, not the other way around) I began rolling out the tortillas. (Note: the heavier the pan the easier it is to control the heat. A cast iron fry pan would be ideal for making tortillas.)

Sprinkle some flour onto the counter or use a Silpat mat and roll out each ball of dough into a flat circle about 6 inches in diameter. Don't worry if they're not perfectly circular.

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Place your tortilla directly into the frying pan. You don't need to add any oil to the pan, they won't stick.

When you see bubbles popping up all over the top of the tortilla, it's done.

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Take it off the heat and cover with a clean dishtowel as you repeat the process.

You don't need to cook the tortillas on both sides as they're so thin they'll cook through from the bottom. Cooking on only one side will make a better tortilla.

I filled ours with shredded beef (leftover from a pot roast), a "secret sauce", then topped with cheese.

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As you can see, they were a huge hit with Dan and I. If I had offered the kids the ingredients separately and allowed them to make their own, they might have been more apt to eat them.

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I think the entire process was 15 minutes start to finish. I told a friend I was going to try tweaking the recipe to add some healthier flour, and up the amount of water while reducing the amount of shortening.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

slight differences

Today the girls got weighed and measured. I was shocked that only 5 pounds and 5 inches separate them. They are 18 months apart in age, but so very close in size. Will they be "sharing" clothes soon? Fighting over them?

New Sunglasses...

Ellison Jennaye, currently 4 yrs and 2 months old
32 pounds 39 inches
Wears size 4T or 5T size 9 1/2 or 10 shoe

She's telling some story!

Addison Mabel currently 2 years 9 months old
27 pounds 34 inches
Wears size 2T (tightly) or 3T size 7 1/2 or 8 shoe