Monday, November 24, 2008

Smiling Already!


We were able to reschedule our 3D/4D ultrasound this week. This time, our little peanut had no choice but to cooperate. I caffeinated and sugared her up. LOL. She was awake and moving just enough to make things interesting. It was a great experience.

Our 3D ultrasound


We came home with a 30 min DVD and 53 pictures on a CD! Wow....

Monday, November 17, 2008

Target carseat adventure

I don't know if you've heard, but Target had a pricing snafu last night on their website. They listed two very expensive and very highly reviewed carseats for a price that has to be so far below wholesale it isn't even funny.

The carseats, Britax Marathons, are normally $270 plus shipping. Target was selling two models for $43 and $60 each, with FREE shipping. As the evening wore on, word spread that Target intended to sell the carseats for $43 and $60 OFF regular prices. Oops.

Lots of parents bought 1-4 of the carseats at the mistaken price thinking to either accommodate a younger child or to upgrade their current systems. Me, I bought one for our upcoming baby for my car. (A won't be out of her carseat a year from now, when the new baby needs to move out of the infant seat, so we WILL need two new convertable carseats.) I really didn't believe the price could be right, but who wouldn't get in line just in case it was true?

There is a lot of speculation was to whether or not Target will honor the orders. Some CS reps are telling customers that any order will be honored. Some reps are saying that no orders will be honored. Some are telling people that only orders for fewer than 4 carseats will be honored.

My order has not been cancelled and is showing up in my account. I received an email stating that I would receive my carseat between December 29th and January 16th. We'll see! I sure hope I do get my carseat. It would be a great savings for us.

If you'd like to see the sweet little carseat I tried to order, here is the Amazon link:


Sunday, November 16, 2008

It's a Girl!

And that's about the only secret she divulged during our 30 minute ultrasound session. She was firmly lodged down in to my pelvis with her face towards the spine and her hands in front of her nose the whole time. We didn't see her face even once!

We'll be going back in for a "rain date" ultrasound on Thursday and hopefully have better results. Mountain Dew has been recommended to me, and although I am hesitant to go to that extreme, as it will cost me a full night's sleep, it's tempting if it will ensure better results next time!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Childhood Favorite Book... ruined by a poor rewrite

When I was little, one of my favorite picture books was Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs. The basic story is that far away there is a town where the weather is not rain, snow, and sun, but rather breakfast, lunch, and dinner. All of the food falls from the sky. Over the course of the story, the weather goes apocalyptic and the people have to make the decision to flee their town for a new part of the world where food does not fall from the sky. The pictures are wonderful and full of hidden humor for the parent reading to a small child. Even as a child, I loved the wittiness of this book.

I held onto my copy of the book all of these years so that I could someday share it with my children. Unfortunately, over the years, my 30 year old copy has fallen to the fate of most inexpensive paperbacks... it's falling apart and the paper has yellowed and become brittle.

So when I saw a NEW copy of the book at Once Upon a Child resale store for a $1, I had to buy it. I could read the book to my children and retire my old copy to a memory box. Yay!

But then I opened it up and tried to read it to A. Somehow in the intervening years, someone decided that the book needed a rewrite. Why? I don't really know.

Some of the changes make a twisted kind of sense in that they try to address how our views of social/ecological responsibility have changed. For example, when the sanitation department is cleaning up the leftover food from the streets, in the original book, the food is split between the town's cats and dog and the nearby ocean's wildlife. In the new version, a new phrase has been added to state that the bulk of the leftovers are composted, with some left for the dogs, cats, and ocean life.

Some changes seem to be added to make it more clear that this is in fact a FICTITIOUS story, as if that fact wasn't obvious. The story changes from a "bedtime story" to a "tall-tale bedtime story." Okay, I get it, but really... really? Did that need to be stated?

Other changes simply make NO sense and do not improve the book at all. Instead of stating that the town has stores, houses, gardens, trees, and schools, it now states that the town has stores, houses with gardens and trees, and schools, etc. Not really a necessary change. Or when the pancake lands on Henry's head, it must be stated that the "flying object" was identified as a pancake. Anyone looking at the picture can see the pancake lying across Henry's face and see that it is in fact a pancake. These additions really do nothing for the story and only detract from the fact that the pictures supposed to be the main purveyors of detail.

I really don't understand why, overall, the book was deemed in need of a rewrite. It made perfect and simple sense as it was. And yes, while I can understand that in today's world we wouldn't think of simply dumping our excess food into the ocean, does that really necessitate a rewrite of a fictional story about a fictional town with fictional weather???

I'm so disappointed that I won't read A the new copy. I try, and every time I come across an edited sentence or paragraph, I stumble and have to try to remember what really belongs there and what doesn't. I'm truly sad over this. I may have to go out and find another OLDER copy of the book for A... well, okay, for myself!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Tofu Yummyness

Tonight's dinner was one of those rare successes with a first-try recipe. Yay! The original recipe, from some website that I can't remember, did not have any veggies, nuts, or raisins, and called for chicken rather than tofu.

Tofu Curry
2T oil
1T margarine or butter
1/2 tsp cumin seed (optional)
1/2C finely chopped onion
1/2 T minced garlic (3 cloves)
1T minced ginger (about 1")
4T tomato paste
1/4 tsp tumeric
3/4 tsp ground cumin
3/4 tsp groung corriander
1/4 1/2 tsp salt
1/8 - 1/4 tsp cayenne
1 block of tofu, extra firm
1 bag of mixed veggies (ours had zuchini, summer squash, broccoli, cauliflower, and green beans)
1/4C cashews
raisins for garnish.

Boil veggies as directed on packaging.

In a pan, heat oil and butter on medium-high for 1 min.

Add cumin seeds and toast for 1-2 min.

Add onion and cook untl it begins to brown.

Add garlic and ginger and cook 1-2 min.

Add tomato paste, spices, and salt. Mix, adding just enough water to make a nice paste.

Add tofu and a handful of cashews, cook for 2 min.

Add 1/2C water, stir, cover, and turn to low. Simmer for 8 minutes.

Garnish with raisins if desired. Serve with rice.

It was so exactly what I wanted to eat, so satisfying....

Even A ate it!!!! C did not, however, stating that he wasn't a fan of mushy stewy things and that he'd not deprive me of leftovers by forcing down a bowl. LOL.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Ultrasound Poll

Did no one notice the little poll to the right? No one has voted. VOTE, y'all!

We have an elective ultrasound scheduled for Nov 15th and we will finally know the truth about Baby's gender. Vote now and see if you guessed correctly! I'll tell everyone the answer on Monday, Nov 17th!

Election Day Annoyances

You'd think that my election day annoyances would have to do with waiting in line or some other polling site SNAFU. Nope. It's the mundane people that are driving me nuts.

1. My coworkers. For months now I have been bombarded with their opinions on the matter. For months now they have assumed I agree. They're making asses of themselves. Today, when I came into work I was late because I voted and then came home to watch Abby while Chad voted. It was his first time voting and I was proud of him for deciding to do so. One would assume that my politically manic coworkers would be happy, too. What I hear instead is:

"Did you also make sure he voted the right way?"

Is there a right way to vote? I mean, beyond getting to the poll, registering, and filling in the marks correctly to correspond with one's personal beliefs?

2. The crazy political volunteers. They tried to leave behind a THIRD copy of the same dang flier that was already plastered to my front door. AFTER I HAD ALREADY VOTED. I told them to go away.

At least by tonight, people will stop trying to convince me to vote their way. Then I'll get to hear everyone complain about how bad the miscount was. Four years from now, maybe they'll simmer down a bit and I can get some peace.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

LaRue Has Left the House

Just as an aside, for those who are interested, the kitten, LaRue, has moved on to the Humane Society. I wasn't sure I wanted to do that to such a wonderful kitten, but once we were there I knew it was right.

We dropped him off, filled out the paperwork, and then went to tour the animal rooms. A loves to see the dogs and cats, and everything else. By the time we returned to the front to gather up our kennel, one of the workers made sure to tell us that "half the staff is in love with him already!" I feel confident that they will do what they can to find him a home quickly, if he doesn't have one already with one of the admiring staff-members.

I'll call in a few days to check up on him. Because he was a stray, they had to keep him in back for a week so that his original owners have a chance to reclaim him. I find that somewhat doubtful, given his origins, but I understand why.

They also said he's old enough to be neutered right away and placed up for adoption as soon as his isolation week is done. Yay! I hope he finds a home the first day he's out.

Making Laundry Detergent

After being inspired to make laundry detergent the other day, I went to my local Woodman's and found all of the ingredients. I had to go around the detergent aisle 3 times to find the washing soda, but finally I found it. Here's what I spent:

$0.89 Fels-Naptha soap
$2.99 Borax
$2.29 washing soda

I used 1/3 of the bar of soap, but only the smallest fraction of the other two boxes of powder, so I'll have to buy more Fels-Naptha if I intend to make more detergent once I get through the 2 gallons of liquid laundry soap I just made.

I followed the recipe given on the second website I mentioned in my last post. I wanted to make a powdered soap, but after I had it mixed, I discovered that the soap shreds don't like to stay mixed with the Borax and washing soda. In the end I decided to turn it into liquid laundry detergent.

Can you say easy? This was one of the easier "make it myself" projects that I've tried lately. It took me less than 5 minutes to grate the soap and only seconds to measure out the Borax and washing soda. The longest part of the process was heating the water on the stove to melt it all!

A had a great time counting with me to keep track of the cups of water I had to add to the 5 gallon bucket to get the right concentration. She counts up to 11 these days, which was especially useful as I needed 1 gallon plus 6 cups of water (which broke down to exactly 11 fillings of my 2 cup measuring cup!) She counts, but she doesn't know what the numbers mean, unfortunately. It's like a song or a rhyme for her still. Soon, though, soon she will understand numbers and colors.

All in all, it was a successful project. In a few weeks, I'll try out the detergent to see if it works as well as people say it does. I'm excited to find out.