Friday, November 26, 2010

Cabin Fever

Starting to go a little stir crazy being cooped up in here while the temperature outside still hangs below freezing.  I'm just not used to it.  Thank goodness Andrea came home from work tonight with a fun, fresh idea... bring the fun of the outdoors inside!  And with that, up went the tent.  In our living room!  Elliot was very, very pleased.  It turned our stir crazy, cabin fever into a fun, spontaneous adventure. 

Thursday, November 25, 2010


This Thanksgiving, Elliot learned about the magic of the kids' room.    

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

16 Degrees

That was the temperature outside today.  The HIGH temperature.  Ouch.  Good thing this cold front is a fluke and not the norm here in Boise, or in the entire snowed in/freezing west coast for that matter.  So... what does one do when frozen in for the day with a toddler?  Make playdough, of course! 

First you mix the dry ingredients:

Then you stir in the wet ingredients (we chose blue because Elliot is pretty good at identifying things that are blue... "Bue!"):

Finish by mixing with your hands until combined:

And enjoy!
My one-time-use, so easy, no cook playdough:

2 parts flour
1 part salt
Stir in :
1 part water 
1 quick squeeze of food coloring
Then mix with your hands until fully combined.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

We've Got Pumpkin

And lots of it!  None of my beautiful pumpkins were carved this Halloween (when a toddler runs the show, sometimes priorities just need to be shifted around, you know?).  And the recent snowfall made them turn from a pretty fall decoration on the front porch to a pile of unseasonable squashes.  So inside they came, to meet their match with my knife and oven.  I cut them, buttered them, spiced half and left the other half plain, and popped them in the oven for the afternoon.  A little zap in the cuisinart and I had myslef a bucket of plain pumpkin puree waiting to be made into pumpkin curry soup and another bucket spiced and waiting to become muffins, sweet bread, pancakes, you name it.  Oh the yumminess!  Elliot was totally into it with me.  The squishing of the pumpkin guts.  The smelling of the spices.  The tasting of the raw pumpkin.  Er, I didn't put him up to that.  It was all him.  But he didn't get too far.  Raw pumpkin really doesn't taste that good.  But whole wheat pumpkin walnut chocolate chip muffins sure do!  See below...

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking sa
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (or make an equivalent mix of cinnamon, cloves, allspice and nutmeg)
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk (or 1/3 c milk plus 1 t lemon juice, let sit for 5 mins)
  • Plus a few handfuls of chocolate chips and walnuts

Whisk together the first 3 ingredients and set aside. Blend together the next 6 ingredients.  Mix wet into dry ingredients just until combined, then add any extra yummies.  Bake 15 minutes at 400 degrees.  Makes a dozen muffins.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

Look at that little face!  Can you even stand it?  The snow over the past few days, Elliot’s first real snow, has quickly changed the mood here from Fall to Winter.  Suddenly the pumpkins, still sitting on the front porch and on top of our mantle, look terribly unseasonable.  Snapping pictures of this little snow baby today made me want to dig out our twinkly lights, spread pine boughs along the mantle, and start making this year’s Christmas card!  Last year we made a photo card for Elliot's first Christmas using Shutterfly.  I loved the simple design of the card we chose (and am even toying with the idea of using it again because I just love how simple and clean it is while still giving me lots of photo spaces).  And since I got a new camera this year (thanks again, Nan!), I have so many pictures to choose from.  I doubt I'll be able to stop at just the Christmas card.  Watch out, loved ones... pictures of Elliot plastered all over calendars, mugs, and wall decals (no way?!) will be arriving in your mailboxes any day now.  Shutterfly makes it so easy.  And who doesn't want to look at that sweet little face each time you rest your drink on the coffee table?  Oh Shutterfly, you know exactly what I want!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Little Buddies

Ask Elliot if he wants to go to ______ (fill in the blank, it could be anywhere), and he will most likely respond with, "Luh, Luh, Luh."  That's right, he wants to go and play with Liam every time.  And apparently, if you ask Liam if he wants to play with Elliot, he always says, "Peas! Peas!"  So polite! These two little ones have become the best little buddies.  They are just the right speed for one another and have all the same interests... motorcycles, garbage trucks, fire trucks, diggers, books, running, spinning, moving faster faster faster.  They are about as close to toddler BFFs as you can get.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Our Very Own Thanksgiving

If your loved ones can't be with you for the holidays, then have the holidays when your loved ones are with you.  At least that's what we do.  We've never gone so far as to have Christmas in July, but we did just celebrate an early Thanksgiving this weekend when Annika was here.  That's right, a full turkey, stuffing, pumpkin pie Thanksgiving.  Not to mention a killer cheese plate for our hors d' oeuvre.  Elliot couldn't get enough of the Humboldt Fog goat's milk cheese.  That boy has good taste!  The house was festive and fall-like.  It was gray and stormy outside, making it all the more cozier inside.  And by the end of the night, our bellies were as overflowing with yummy food as the kitchen was with dirty dishes.  Just the way Thanksgiving day should be.   

Friday, November 5, 2010

Oh Yeah!

Nothing like a big ol' pile of leave to really kick the season into high gear!

Gathering Leaves

Our new neighborhood is full of big, beautiful trees and it has been the most splendid sight to see them change colors this fall.  Elliot and I couldn't pass up a chance to go gathering. I'm thinking of stringing a garland out of our collection to add to our fall mantle. 

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Halloween Is Long Over

 But visions of it are still drifting through my head.  Elliot at his first Halloween party.  Elliot seeing the lion while dressed as a lion at Boo at the Zoo.  Smooching with Nan.  And the candy basket.  Oh, the candy basket!  He was in lolly heaven.