A crazy past few weeks…

Wow, you know things are nuts when the first time you get a chance to update your blog is when you’re out of town on business.  It’s actually kind of nice to have some uninterrupted time to just read, sleep, or do whatever I want.  I read a whole book – The Other Queen – by Philippa Gregory on the flight from Memphis to Seattle and have picked up a few more books to read on the way back.  Plus, I’m enjoying being able to watch cable TV.  Imagine my immense disappointment when I turned on Headline News this morning and Robin Meade had the day off… grrr!

Anyways, here’s a quickie update on what’s been going on with us:

  • Our babysitter’s son had his surgery and is home again.  He’s doing great and Mallory is back at the babysitter as of this morning.
  • Our 15 year old live in house guest has gone home.  It was wonderful to have her living with us because she was so helpful, but I realized how hard it is to have a teenager under our roof.  I’m looking forward to seeing Mallory when she’s older but I’m hoping she won’t have any drama.  I realize that might be unavoidable with teenagers 🙂
  • My tooth is FIXED!  I had a crown put on followed by an emergency root canal last Wednesday.  I stalked my dentist that morning at 7AM and was in the endodontist’s chair by 9AM.  I can eat ice cream, drink fluids, and do everything I could do before.  I didn’t realize how badly it affected me until it was fixed.
  • We bought a new car!  This is my first ever new car and we leveraged the power of the CARS program along with a reasonably priced Nissan Versa.  Running the numbers, it will actually only cost us roughly $40/month extra over and above what we were paying for the Explorer (195,000+ miles) and Grand Am (169,000+ miles)  in gas, fees, and maintenance.  It’s also reliable – something I couldn’t say about the other cars.
  • I’m in Seattle at a conference for the next few days and Ben is being Mr. Mom while I’m gone.  For a glimpse on how he and Squish are doing, visit his blog.

So here I am in Seattle.  Got here yesterday and hung around the city.  Visited the Pike Market, famous for their tossed fish and farmers produce.  Ben and I have an unwritten rule when we travel that we don’t eat at chain restaurants; instead, we search out local good eats.  I hit up Emmett Watson’s Oyster Bar for lunch where I had an awesome basket of freshly breaded oysters, shrimp, and clams.  Also hit up a local Russian Bakery visited by Anthony Bourdain, Piroshky Piroshky.  They bill themselves as the ‘Best Russian Bakery This Side of the World’ and live up to the boast.  I had their awesome Poppyseed Raisin Roll.  Imagine a cinnamon roll that instead is filled with yummy poppyseed filling and studded with raisins.  Deeeeeee-licious!  I also snagged a pint of fresh Washington strawberries and ate them at 3:30 this morning when I woke up.  Thank goodness I thought ahead or I would have had to break into the disgustingly overpriced snack basket in my room.  I just can’t see myself paying $3.50 for a Snickers, yanno?  I didn’t even get a key to the minifridge; who needs that temptation?

Tonight is a dinner cruise around Lake Washington and tomorrow night has a Mariners/Oakland A’s game on the schedule.  I’m still contemplating wearing my Pittsburgh Steelers long-sleeved t-shirt to the game.  I don’t want to insult my hosts, but the temptation to wear it is overpowering 😉

I head home on Wednesday.  Catch up with you guys then!

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Crazy Hair

Mallory had some crazy hair at the babysitter’s today.  I love when she sends me pictures like this!  Image quality isn’t the best, but it’s from her Blackberry.

Mallory Crazy Hair

Weekend Wrap Up – Growth Spurt Edition

This weekend went by so quickly.  I thought I had plenty of time and before I knew it, it was Sunday night and time for bed.

Friday was an interesting adventure because Ben and I went to a No-So-Surprise Congratulations Party (accidentally ruined by Yours Truly) for a co-worker while my sister watched Mallory.  I jokingly told Mallory to go ahead and be ‘Evil Baby’ for Aunt Jamie, never imagining it would come true.  Apparently she ate one 4oz bottle, screamed like a banshee, and then plowed through 1/2 the second bottle.  At the time we thought it was an isolated incident, but now realize that it was the beginning of the dreaded growth spurt.

Mallory’s growth spurts are tough on us because she wants to eat every hour and a half to two hours.  Typically you can squeeze two to two and a half hours out of her between feedings and she just gets a little irritable.  During growth spurt season she’s just irrational and screaming.  During a typical day she will eat between 28 and 32 oz.  Yesterday she ate close to 40.  Yes, 40.

Saturday had Ben’s parents and sister who lives  out-of-town coming over for dinner and hanging out.  We grilled a piece of beef that wasn’t too great (noto to self: no more meat from Meijer’s meat dept).  The highlight of the meal was grilled pineapple slices with Homemade brand  Vanilla Bean ice cream drizzled with caramel syrup.  Num!  I ended up finishing David Dunwoody’s Empire too.  Getting ready to start the book for next week’s Book Club – Mistress of the Art of Death.

Sunday was one of those days where it starts out being 7:30AM and the next time I looked at the clock, it was after 8PM.  Made a neat pork loin for dinner in the crock pot.  Canned peaches + raisins + brown sugar + vinegar + onion + blender = pure pork happiness.   I used a 4lb loin so we have PLENTY of pork leftover for lunches this week.  I love those meals that you make once and just walk away from.  I uh, need to learn the definition of the cooking term ‘chutney.’  Apparently, it is NOT synonymous with ‘puree.’  Ben came tearing up the stairs when he heard the blender going full blast instead of pulsing – At least it gave him a laugh 🙂  Also, found out that the bottom of our blender pitcher is broken, which explained why all the liquid was on the counter.  That made Ben laugh, too.  My sister was at our house when I was prepping this and we must have looked like the Keystone Cops. 

Ben worked on his header for his new cooking blog and I had him make the header for my new blog (to be unveiled either later this week or early next week).  We caved and Ben bought an antenna to boost the signal for our digital tuner.  We now have NBC, CBS, FOX, and ABC along with PBS, the God channel, and the CW.  I will now be able to watch football – yay!  I was getting a little concerned with how far we were going to take this whole ‘no cable tv’ thing.  Mallory gave us a scare with a screaming fit – we rushed her upstairs, stripped her naked to make sure that nothing was hurting / poking / pinching her, and then decided to try a bottle.  Wouldn’t you know, she was starving. 

Rest of the night was uneventful – prepared for the week to come.  Never did  get a chance to sit down and work on that piece of jewelry *sigh.*  Maybe next weekend?

How was YOUR weekend?