Archive for December, 2007

Taking a Deep Post-Christmas Breath

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

As much as I love it, these quiet moments after Christmas are always so nice. The tree stands, proud and decorated, and there’s no pressure to make or buy lovely things to put beneath it. Josie loves these days best of all, as there’s finally room for her.
Josie the Cat naps under the Christmas tree

We spent a lovely Christmas eve and day with my parents (at what we call our “country house”). Dash, oblivious to all except mom & dad & grandparents lavishing attention on him, was spoiled with more gifts than he knows what to do with. Not too many really, but when you consider how much an almost-one-year-old really needs, a lot.

His favorite way to spend time? Standing at the old drum-turned-coffee-table playing with this little gift box that plays “We wish you a merry Christmas” every time the lid is lifted. Sounds fine, but that box is one of the more annoying things ever brought into my parent’s house. And I should know. I brought it home to them almost twenty years ago. You’re welcome, Dad!

Here’s a shot of the boy in action.
Dash plays at the drum christmas 2007

So now it’s all over for another year and the snow is falling yet again. Life goes on, and never was that more clear than on my to-do list.

Today’s To-Do:

Go to the post office
Return videos (Cube and Chalk)
Paint studio (who am i even kidding here? this is the longest project ever.)
Write thank you notes

And with that I’m off. Those thank you’s don’t write themselves.

Damn You Snowbanks!

Sunday, December 23rd, 2007

Or, snowberms, as Robyn would say.

So we’ve been a little cooped up with all this snow that fell over the past week. And though it’s been cold for just a leisurely walk, I had to do it anyway. There’s only so much of the inside of my house I can take.
Time to bundle Dash up in his new snowsuit and head out for a jaunt up the street.

I Can’t Move
Mom? I can’t move but for all the bundling.

But Dash, I say, we’re going out into the freezing cold to walk up the street. We’ll step carefully on crunchy, packed down snow, our noses will drip everywhere, and we’ll probably slip on some ice on the way. It’ll be so much fun!

Cute Dash in snowsuit
I believe you mom. Let’s go!

All of the above did indeed happen (note to self: bring tissues), but it was sunny and our spirits were lifted by the fresh air, so we (I) decided to do the complete block. It’s about a mile around, easy on a mild day, but we tend not to walk it in the winter. But I was feeling ok about it and Dash was enjoying himself, so we kept on walking.

One short portion of this loop falls on a busy, loud street. It’s my least favorite and I don’t even like to admit that we live so close to it. But there are sidewalks and like I said, it’s the short, and last portion of the walk. As we approach it I get this sinking feeling. “What if they haven’t cleared the sidwalks? No, that’s ridiculous. It’s been two days since the storm and it’s a busy street. Of course they’ve plowed. Ha ha, it sure would suck if they hadn’t plowed. We’d have to walk all the way back, another mile, up that steep hill, and the temperature is plummeting. Hilarious!”

My disappointment in the city’s lack of plowing is perhaps best expressed by this picture, taken after the long, unexpected and cold, walk home.

City of Portland made me cry

I was pretty annoyed, but then the city got a lot of bad press for dropping the ball during this particular storm (sidewalks not plowed around schools? Come on now.). I still love you Portland, but why you gotta make my baby cry?

Cuter than Harry and William?

Wednesday, December 19th, 2007

Dash is famous for being cute around this house, but I had no idea it had leaked to the outside.

On Costumes.

The Ramblings of a Caffeinated Woman

Monday, December 17th, 2007

The following is brought to you courtesy of a very strong pot of coffee. My apologies in advance for any caffeinated rambling. I’m not in control of it.

Dash has been running a fever on and off for the last few days and is now waking up roughly every half hour through the night. Awesome. We think he has some more teeth coming in, resulting in much drool, fever, and need to be in mommy’s arms every moment of every day. Again, awesome.

And the moments he’s not in my arms, he’s walking around the house getting into the cabinets and bumping his head. Yes, that’s right, he’s WALKING. It started last week and it’s come in fits and spurts ever since then. I’ll save you the math- he’s only about 10 months old. Is that early? He seems pretty excited about it. Hmm… maybe that’s what’s causing the fever?

Anyway, fever boy is sleeping it off (for now) so I have a few blessed moments with my coffee and a stack of things to do. Must wrap gifts. Must pack up HappyDashery goods and Christmas gifts for family out west and head out to the Post Office (should be fun, what with this being prime holiday shipping time, yay!). In stark contrast to how I usually procede through the day, I’m going to keep my To Do list to a bare minimum to accommodate the Dashster’s feverish needs. Also, let’s be honest. This was the last of the coffee, and I don’t think I can do anything more than what’s listed above without passing out.

But if by chance I do pass out, I hope I land somewhat near our Christmas tree. I really love it this year. We decided to go with a short tree and put it up on a table out of reach of Dash. Strangely, we’re lacking in tables so it’s on my hope chest. Right at Dash’s level. Good plan, eh?

Anyway, I love it.
And that’s all just to tease you because I can’t seem to get the pictures up right now. Grrr….

Here’s the flickr link to satisfy your curiosity until I can figure out this problem.

Also! My new favorite place to hang out and get my vintage Christmas groove on? Vintage Christmas 1945-1970. You will not be sorry.

Eat This.

Wednesday, December 12th, 2007

I know I said I’d do this before the weekend, but well, I lied. Hopefully this gave you plenty of time to gather the necessary ingredients. Not that you knew what they were yet, but you know.

Without further ado or excuses, here is the recipe for Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies. Originally given to me by my mother and adapted by me so she doesn’t kill me.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 can pumpkin (or homemade puree if you have it)
2 eggs
3/4 cup safflower (or canola) oil
1/4 cup water
3 1/2 cups flour
2 cups sugar (half a cup more if you want it sweetsweetsweet)
1 Tbs pumpkin pie spice
2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 cups really good chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350.
In a small bowl, combine pumpkin, eggs, oil, and water.
In a large bowl, sift the dry ingredients (not the chips). Add the pumpkin mixture to this and mix well. Stir in chocolate chips.

Place spoonfuls of batter onto a greased cookie sheet. They won’t spread too much, but leave some room between. Bake for 13-15 minutes, depending on your oven. Let them cool on the sheet for a moment or two while you get out the cooling racks. Transfer to racks. Once cool, or at least not raging hot, try one. You’ll be happy you did.

They freeze well, so if you can stand it, put some in a freezer bag and hide them from yourself. It is a happy day when one of those bags is uncovered in the freezer after you’ve forgotten about them. Yum.

So enjoy! Write in with your baking experiences if you’d like. Or share the pictures. We can all start a pumpkin chocolate chip cookie flickr group together. We’ll be the coolest!