Sunday, August 28, 2011

Funniest Kid Ever

So we made our second attempt to transition Kaycie to her big girl bed tonight. I put her In the bed, read a pile of books, sang 10 verses of the "Mama Loves Kaycie" song, and left her screaming.

By the time I got to the living room she was quiet. Big faker. I sighed in relief, waited a few minutes, then got in the tub.

It took her less than an hour to discover she was now free to escape.

By the time I got out of the tub I saw a little face peeping out from her door. As soon as she spied me she closed the door. Every minute or so I would hear the door crack open fir a few seconds then close. If she didn't see me she might stick her head out or whisper to the pup who was guarding her door. If she did see me she'd close the door quickly.

I finally went and got her, put her back in the bed (after cleaning every book she owns out of her bed), told it was time to sleep and that I would see her tomorrow. She said, "Tomorrow.  BYE." Not 30 seconds later I heard the door crack open again.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

Greg is now taking his turn putting her back in bed. It's going to be a long night. I'm curious to see where we find her in the morning. She may never take another nap again.

Sunday, August 21, 2011


And during all the commotion today, my child chose to be about as difficult as I've ever seen her. Geezum. Peetes. Just a sample from this evening:

Me: Kaycie, do you want to go get in the tub with the bubbles? (One of her favorite things in the world, by the way)
Kaycie: No.
Me: You sure?
Kaycie: No.
Me (baffled): Ok then, we can do it tomorrow.

Half an hour later...

Greg: Blah blah blah pajamas blah blah
Kaycie: Bubbles?
Greg: You didn't want bubbles tonight, remember?
Kaycie: Bubbles?
Greg: Not tonight, it's too late.
Kaycie (with pitiful face and lip tremble): Bubbles?
Me: FINE. But this will be the shortest bath ever. Greg, will go dig her some pajamas out of the dryer while I put her in the tub?
Kaycie: NOOOOOO!

Kaycie runs down the hall, finds a pooh book and forces it in Greg's hand.

Greg: I thought you wanted bubbles?
Kaycie: Book.
Greg: You're about to get in the tub.
Kaycie (crying fit in progress): Boooook.

Greg sits on the couch and reads her a book while I go grab her pajamas. After the book, he starts undressing her and putting on her pajamas.


Insert crying fit. I take her down the hall, read 3 books, and put her in bed, which is usually routine and she tells me bye and everything is fine. Tonight she says, "UP?" and starts another crying fit as I leave.

Did I mention that this was not the first (or the worst) tantrum of the day? The first one came at nap time, while I was trying to get her to sleep in her new bed while my mom was sending me texts and I was trying to update my cousins. She ended up in a screaming fit, so I put her back in her crib. She screamed harder. I put her back in the bed. She got even louder. I put her back in the crib and put myself in my bed, where I curled up in a ball and had a minor meltdown. She also went batty at dinner and was flinging herself at me. Seriously. I think she's been possessed today. And of all days, today was bad enough without it!

A Little Bad News Goes a Long Way

My day started with a text from my Dad. That's never good. As a general rule, he only texts me when it's bad news. If he calls it means somebody died. Seriously. The last time my dad called me was when my uncle died. Before that it was when my grandfather passed. Thankfully, today it was just texts.

Apparently my Grandma fell this morning around 3am on her way back from the bathroom. My mom called her this morning to see if she was feeling up to going to church and didn't get an answer, so she and Dad went to check on her. They found her in the dining room on the floor.

They took her to the hospital in Meridian (about an hour away) with fears of a broken hip. Turned out to be a humerus fracture (??) just below the hip spiral. Tomorrow they will get consults from Grandma's cardiologist (she has a heart murmur and congestive heart failure) and an orthopedic surgon. From there the docs will decide what to do about surgery. Mom is anticipating that they will want to put a rod in her leg. Did I mention that Grandma is pushing 86 (if she's not there already, I'm trying to remember if last December was 85 or 86...).

So much of my day has been spent recieiving and relaying text messages. Since my Uncle Lacy died several years ago I've kinda been in charge of keeping his kids in the loop on family emergencies. My cousin Lynn mentioned at one point today that she was afraid a fracture would mean that Grandma won't get to go back home and live by herself anymore. Frankly, Mom's been worried about her ever since she nearly died from the heart failure a year ago. We rallied the troops then thinking she may not make it out of the hospital, but for the 294th time, she proved us all wrong. She's a severe insulin-dependent diabetic and we've been saying forever that we didn't know how long she'd be around, or how long she'd be able to live by herself. She has basically laughed at us for a couple of decades now.

This time, I dunno. I'm not as worried as I was with her prolonged hospital stay last year, but I do fear going home may not be an option. We'll see.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Feeling Blue

Today's appointment went perfectly. Doc said he saw nothing of concern and our chances of having an undetected chromosomal anomaly are about 1 in 500.

I told Greg that meant we shouldn't have 500 babies.

On about the third picture the doc took she was like, "I SEE BOY PARTS!" This means I have to do some shopping, because I have a storage unit full of pink stuff. For the record, very little of the pink stuff was purchased by me! Most of it was gifts. I was pretty careful about buying neutral colored gear and toys for the most part. But alas, there's a lot of it.

And now I have to name a boy. Sigh. I could name 15 girls, but naming one boy... I dunno. It's a hard one. But we have some time and we'll figure something out. We had a good girl name picked out already, pretty much by accident, but that's kinda useless now! We'll probably use William, since it's a big family name for my family, but I'd rather use it as a middle name which
complicates things. We'll see. Nothing is finalized or eliminated yet!

And finally, my favorite part of the doc visit -

Nurse taking medical history: "Are you and your husband related in any way?"
Me: "Only by marriage."

Monday, August 15, 2011

Pink or Blue

So Tuesday is the big day. We'll have our hour long high risk anatomy scan with Dr. Perry in the morning. His scheduler called me today and said they were having to reschedule because he had to do a procedure in the morning. I freaked out. Seriously. Not while I was on the phone with her, but right after. I had to all but bend time to make arrangements for this appointment. Greg's taken off work. My sweet, sweet mother took two days off work, kept Kaycie all weekend, brought her home today and is spending the night so she can keep her tomorrow morning so we don't have to wrangle a toddler during the sonogram. Every time we've taken Kaycie into a sonogram room she's freaked out on us, so I really, really didn't want to deal with that tomorrow. Furthermore, she wanted to reschedule us for Thursday at 2. Kaycie goes down for naps at 1:30. Not only do I not want to wrangle her in a sono room for an hour (at least, if there's no delay), I most certainly don't want to wrangle a very sleepy Kaycie in a sono room for an hour!

I explained all this to the scheduler lady. I told her that if nothing else, I needed to reschedule for a morning time, because I absolutely cannot deal with my toddler during nap time. She said she'd call me back. Sure enough, within 30 minutes she called me back and said to show up at 9:30, they'd go ahead and take care of me. Turns out she has a 1 1/2 year old granddaughter. She didn't want Kaycie up there either!

Sooo... tomorrow we should find out what we're having. I consulted two different websites with the Chinese gender prediction calendars, one said girl and one said boy. Useful. I asked for predictions on Facebook and got a tie. We started to buy one of the gender prediction kits you can buy at Walgreens just for fun, but it was $40 and we decided it wasn't that much fun. It's ok. We should know tomorrow.

More importantly, we should know if there are any issues with physical development. That's not something I worry about, mostly because there's nothing I can do about it and there's no point in worrying about it, but it'll be a relief to know nothing's wrong. I've refused all other genetic testing they've offered, because it wouldn't matter. I'm not willing to terminate regardless, so if there's any genetic issues we'll know about it when MicroTot arrives.

Now we just wait...

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Taking a Break

This weekend we're dropping Kaycie off with my parents and running away from home.

What am I most looking forward to during this break? Is it the trip to Memphis with Greg? I am looking forward to that, but it's not #1. Getting some much needed sleep? That's a close second.

The number one thing I'm looking forward to is not changing diapers for a few days. Seriously. I don't generally have a problem with changing diapers, but with Kaycie every diaper change is a battle. Flat out rebellion. Running away until I chase her down. Fighting, screaming, kicking. And as a pregnant woman who is having periodic nausea issues, stinky diapers are not my friend.

Speaking of TMI, I sent Greg a text today that said, "Just once I'd like to throw up without an audience." He replied "Just give it 12 years..." Sigh. At least Kaycie's nice about it. She'll stand next to me patting me on the back and saying, " 's ok, Mama. 's ok."

So anyway, yes, that's what I'm looking forward to. I just hope these stupid allergies go away and I feel human in time for our trip.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

There's a Bean in My Vodka!

I've probably lost my mind, but this just seemed like fun.

I've been contemplating this since last summer when I read about making my own pure vanilla extract. I never did because it seemed silly expensive for something you can buy for $3 a bottle at the store, but that's imitation vanilla flavoring, not pure vanilla extract.

And it just sounds like fun.

So I ordered some vanilla beans from, made Greg go buy me a bottle of cheap vodka, and viola, in 4-6 months I'll have vanilla. Maybe even in time to give some away for Christmas.

I still have to buy the special amber bottles, but those are kinda cheap, like $1-1.50 each, depending on the size and style. Wonder if I need dropper bottle or regular bottles...

So I don't forget next time, I started with the instructions found here. But when I ordered my beans the best deal I found was for 27 beans, so I ended up using about 2 1/2 quarts of Vodka and all 27 of my beans. I measured out all of my vodka, poured 2 1/2 quarts back in the bottle, split my beans in half with kitchen shears, and shoved them back in the bottle. I have about 3/4 pint of vodka left over, with no idea what I'd do with it. Any of you lushes need a bit of cheap vodka? Free to good home or it goes down the drain!

Now I just have to shove it in a cabinet for a few months and not forget about it when it's done (if I come back to read this when I forget, it's in the corner cabinet under the bar!). And order jars and a couple of fresh beans when the time comes. I read that if you stick a fresh split bean or two in the jar before you give it away, the recipient can add a little vodka as they use it and it'll keep steeping. Since you use approximately half the amount in each recipe, it should last a really long time. Now I want to make a pound cake. But I have to wait 4 months!

AND, I did some googling and found many, many uses for used vanilla beans, so once I get done making the extract I can rinse them off, dry them out, and use them for a variety of other purposes! I'm rather stoked about that, because vanilla beans are not cheap!

On a slightly different note, I felt human enough to break out my dehydrator again on Friday and Saturday to deal with some garden goodies we brought home from Philly last weekend. My stash of seasoning/powders and things that need to be ground into seasonings and powders currently looks like this:

That doesn't include the other fun stuff I've made, just the veggies - tomatoes, red and green bell peppers, celery, jalapeno peppers, celery root, and mushrooms!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

More on Food (Red Beans and Rice)

I'm in the middle of an experiment.

That's pretty impressive for me right now, as I don't really have the energy to do anything. BUT, I've been wanting a good bowl of red beans and rice and Greg has been wanting Chinese (which I have NOT been wanting since getting pregnant, MicroTot doesn't even want to think about it) so we compromised. I'm cooking up a pot of red beans and Greg's going to get Chinese take out! Win-win!

I've never made red beans and rice before. Ever. I've eaten it everywhere in town that serves it, but since Greg won't eat red beans OR rice, I've never bothered to make it at home. I got some suggestions on FB last week, and some advice from my mom over the weekend, and took a stab at it. I put my rice on to cook (I prefer brown rice, which takes 45 minutes to cook anyway) and started sauteing some diced onion in my pot while I sliced up half a package of link sausage to toss in with the onion. When that was about done I tossed in a small amount of garlic (I buy garlic chopped in jars, because I don't use it often enough to keep whole garlic). A lot of the recipes I've seen call for diced tomato, celery, and bell peppers too. That's an awful lot of chopping for me right now, and there was no way I was putting in that much effort, so I just opened a can of red beans and tossed it in the pot with the onions, sausage, and garlic. (Mom had suggested chopped ham, too, but I couldn't find any at the grocery store that I'm allowed to eat right now. Deli meat has too many nitrates and chemicals and pregnant people are generally forbidden from eating much of it.)

As I was stirring up my pot and adding a little water I spied something on the corner of my cabinet. I'm brilliant and didn't know it. Back before I was preggers I did a lot of playing with my food dehydrator and sitting on my cabinet was a jar with dehydrated bell peppers and celery. And I happened to remember that I had a jar of dehydrated ground tomato powder in my spice cabinet! I didn't want a LOT of any of it, just enough to flavor, so I added in a just a little of each.

I haven't eaten it yet, so I can't say if it's tasty. I did a taste test a few minutes ago and the sausage wasn't as strongly flavored as I'd like, so I added a very small dash of creole seasoning. Not much at all. The last time I ordered red beans at a restaurant it was so spicy I couldn't taste any actual flavor, so I wanted to make sure I didn't overpower mine with spiciness.

I should point out here that in a perfect world I'd use dry beans, soak them overnight and it would be a good bit healthier. But I'm not perfect and didn't have that much notice!

Meanwhile, my mom sent home a bag of garden pickings this weekend, which means I need to get off my rear end and do something with a bag of roma tomatoes, bell peppers, and okra. Figure most of that will get dehydrated or frozen (except the okra, of course), because that's the easiest way to deal with it right now, but I will have to prep it all first and that's going to take some effort and a few days. I also want to dehydrate some onion into flakes, but that's going to require finding a home for my dehydrator outside so it doesn't stink up my house. I also have two big watermelons Dad grew for Kaycie that need to be eaten!

But first, I can't wait to dig into my red beans tonight. I'll let you know how it turns out.


First things first. I've been meaning to post this recipe for over a week. Greg's favorite thing in the world to eat is his mom's lasagna. I've tried to make it half a dozen times and can't get it right, but Sunday before last I put Greg in the kitchen and I assisted while he made it and I actually wrote things down. It was so good we ate it 3 nights for dinner. So, before I lose it, here's the recipe:


5 small cans tomato sauce
1/4 of an onion, diced (to taste)
2 lbs ground beef (use one for a less beefy sauce)
onion powder
garlic powder
1 large tub small curd cottage cheese (ricotta if you prefer)
2 cups mozzarella cheese
6 lasagna noodles, cooked (I cook 7, just in case one falls apart)

Brown ground beef an onion together. Drain. Add tomato sauce and seasonings to taste. Simmer. Layer in a greased 9X13 casserole dish as follows:

Thin layer of sauce on bottom to keep it from sticking
3 noodles
1/2 of sauce
1/2 of cottage and mozz cheese
3 noodles
remaining sauce
remaining cheese

Cover with foil and cook @ 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Uncover and broil for 4-5 minutes or until the cheese starts to brown. Let it sit for a few minutes to thicken the sauce.