Monday, November 10, 2008

Cruel and unusual punishment is

. . .watching your daughter get shots. Today Abby had her 6 month check-up. All is well and she is growing right along the curve. She weighed in at 12 pounds, 12 ounces and her length was 24 inches. She was all smiles until the end. The nurse came in to give the shots and this time asked me to hold down Abby’s hands. Now that’s CRUEL! Abby looked at me with such a confounded expression like “how could you do this to me?” She’s been quite fussy all afternoon and actually sleeping a lot! I pray that she is able to sleep well tonight.

One thing that bothered me was that they popped the question of do I want to give a flu shot to Abby? I am a bit leery of flu shots in general let alone in such a little girl. I asked if there were side effects, etc but nothing out of the ordinary. I wish I had had time to check it out myself. I found out that there is mercury in a lot of the flu shots out there and that is what is bad for little ones. But just as in the past, I can not panic. God is in control and faithful with my family.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Homemade baby food

So those that know me know that I can be cheap. Not all the time. For example, I am using disposable diapers instead of cloth diapers. Probably only because I only have access to a washing machine once a week but I must admit that I like using disposable. You only have to deal with the “yuck” once. So I’ve been researching making my own baby food because I just can’t stomach the idea of buying those jars of preservative rich baby food. I’ve also been to enough baby showers where you have to smell and taste to guess what the food is. Gross!!! I am also a control freak. I want to know what I am really feeding my baby. So yesterday was my first attempt to mass produce some baby food. I steamed carrots in the new steamer bags (awesome by the way since to get the most nutrients don’t cook veggies in water). Then I added a bit of water and blended it into a smooth texture. Next I filled an ice cube tray with my carrot mush and froze them overnight. This morning, they popped right out and I placed them in good freezer bags. Now when I want Abby to have some carrots, I just take a carrot cube out and let it defrost.

My next goal is to start making my own rice cereal. Something just makes me cringe about the packaged cereal that I buy. Eventually, Paul and I would like to purchase the Nutrimill which would let us grind our own wheat and anything else such as rice to make nice rice flour. We’ll have to save up for that or maybe we’ll get enough Christmas money for that

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Mini-chocolate cakes


Chocolate Mini Bundt Cakes (This recipe came from

This recipe is actually pretty easy and tastes divine!


  • 1 cup all purpose flour

  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

  • 1/4 tsp salt

  • 4 ounces (1 stick/8 tbsp) unsalted butter, softened at room temp

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 large egg

  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

  • 1/2 cup whole milk

  • 7 ounces good quality* milk chocolate, melted and cooled


  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

  • 2 tsp light corn syrup

To make the cake:

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Generously butter a 6-mold mini bundt pan.

  • Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add egg and beat for 1 minute more, then beat in the vanilla.

  • On low speed, add half the flour mixture and mix only until it is incorporated. Add in the milk and mix until just blended. Then add the remaining flour mixture and mix only until it is incorporated. Blend in the melted chocolate.

  • Divide batter evenly among the 6 molds. Bake at 350F until cake tester comes out clean, about 20-22 minutes.

  • Cool for 5-10 minutes in pan. Then remove the mini bundt cakes from pan and cool to room temperature before glazing.

To make glaze:

Melt chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water or in the microwave on low. Stir in corn syrup. Spread glaze or drizzle over cakes. Allow glaze to set at room temperature, about 15 minutes.

You can skip the chocolate glaze and just dust the mini bundts with powdered sugar.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

White Chili

So I have tons of beans that I need to use up. If you have a good recipe, I would love to hear it. Tonight I made white chili...yummy.

White Chili Recipe


  • 1 lb large white beans, soaked overnight in water, drained

  • 6 cups chicken broth

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 medium onions, chopped (divided)

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil

  • 2 4-ounce cans chopped green chilies

  • 2 tsp ground cumin

  • 1 1/2 tsp dried oregano

  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves

  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

  • 4 cups diced cooked chicken

  • 3 cups grated Monterey Jack cheese

  • 1 jalapeno or serrano pepper, chopped (optional)


1 Combine beans, chicken broth, garlic and half the onions in a large soup pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until beans are very soft, 3 hours or more. Add additional water (or watered-down broth), if necessary.

2 In a skillet, sauté remaining onions in oil until tender. Add chilies and seasonings and mix thoroughly. Add to bean mixture. Add chicken and continue to simmer 1 hour. Check seasoning, add jalapeno or serrano to level of desired hotness.

3 Serve topped with grated cheese. Garnish with cilantro, chopped fresh tomato, salsa, chopped scallions, and/or guacamole. Serve with fresh warmed flour tortillas or tortilla chips.

8-10 servings

Friday, July 11, 2008

Sweet Baby

It's amazing how quickly you can fall in love with a child. Abby is just so sweet especially now that she smiles a lot more often. She's making cooing noises and almost what seems like a laugh.

\"My mommy is funny\"

Last night she slept for 6 1/2 was like heaven especially since the night before she was up at least 4 times. I think she is beginning to recognize Paul and I. I can tell that she knows my voice. She also knows that when I hold her that I am also her milk source :)

I am ready for bed

We take Abby everywhere with us. For the 4th of July, we went downtown to the local parade in Westcliffe and then also looked at the carshow. Later than night, we went out to fireworks at the lake. Right when the fireworks started, Abby had a bit of a meltdown. It was after all a LONG day!

Abby at the parade

Monday, April 14, 2008

Pics from Zambia

My sweet niece
My sweet niece

Andrea with Ireen

SO happy

I see you!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Electricity Shortages

So I was talking to my parents today and the first thing my dad says is “If we lose our connection, it’s because they are cutting off electricity for hours at a time here”. About 10 minutes into our conversation, sure enough, the connection was gone. Unfortunately, for them, it is 4:30, time for dinner. This is the 3rd day of electricity shortages. And this from a country that is supposed to host the World Cup in 2010 – yes, South Africa! Apparently, people have been warning that this would happen and now it has. The domino effect has already started. Hospitals are being closed due to a lack of electricity. Mines are being shut down due to a lack of electricity. If mines are being shut down, the mines are losing LOTS of money (isn’t diamonds what South Africa is known for?). Then the workers are not getting paid because the mine can’t afford to pay them if the mine isn’t producing. My mind is racing with the implications of being without electricity. Can businesses continue without power for their computers? What happens when there isn’t medical care because there is not sufficient electricity? Unless something is done soon, the country will dissolve back into the status of a 3rd world country. So what happens to the World Cup? Can South Africa truly afford to focus on this when their own people don’t even have electricity?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Glucose Tolerance Test

The glucose tolerance test sucks! I didn’t think I had to have it in the first place but then there I am being called in for it. They really have a way to convince young mothers “It is for your baby….you do want to be healthy for your baby, don’t you? Do you know what all could happen if you don’t take this test?, etc, etc”. So I up my carbs for three days per doctor’s orders. Then I fast for 12 hours before taking a super sugar drink. You have to wait three hours before you can go since they draw blood every hour to see how your body is tolerating the glucose. My technician says “The first hour is especially rough. Don’t throw up or you have to come back another day”. Encouraging news as I begin this waiting period. Imagine eating a bag of starbursts or skittles for breakfast and then nothing else….eeks! So what does that do for the baby? I made it through the 3 hours with only the bruises from drawing blood to show for it. But then….sugar crash! I slept for quite awhile in the afternoon although I didn’t feel quite right until the next day. Today, I heard the results. I passed with flying colors!!!! Apparently my body does okay handling that much sugar but I think I’ll pass on eating skittles for breakfast.