Baby’s First Roly-Poly

or rolli-polli, or rolie-polie, or…whatever. I figure its a pretty non-technical name, so you don’t have to worry about getting it exact. It’s part of the fun of the english language really.

We were playing in the grass when I found one and then I held it for her and let it crawl up her arm. All she wanted to do was pinch it in her two fat little fingers, so finally we threw it across the yard.

Fun Fact: Violet has figured out how to open and close the CD drive on our desktop. Not cool. Initially she played with it because of the little green light, but now she knows that if she hits that button the tray opens. How very exciting. Also, sometimes I’ll be in the middle of something on my computer and she’ll turn off the power by hitting the power button one too many times.

Anyway, she’s upstairs sleeping right now..which is my cue to follow suit.



Today Violet and I were out walking/garage-saleing and we saw a front yard with Easter eggs hidden all over. It was the perfect afternoon for a walk because the weather was amazing…except that¬†a dog barked at her and made her cry, and I had to carry her most of the way home AND push the stroller. She’s heavy.

Here’s a shout out to Clayre, who wed her true love today. She’s been in love with this man for like 12 years. She’s the “friend in Texas“.

AJ worked a half-day today and Violet and I missed him terribly…I feel like I lost half my weekend ūüė¶

Current favorite musician: Sara Watkins. Someone needs to buy me this CD. Favorite song? Long Hot Summer Day



Ok, so here’s a horrific little story to help you sleep tonight: today, a friend of mine pulled the foot of a dead rat out of the mouth of her infant daughter.

Anyway, so here’s my great new idea. You remember those write-your-own-adventure books, where you could choose at different parts in the story what the character would do? “Does Ralphy; (a): remove the mask to reveal his true identity? or (b): slay the princess for making such an audacious request? If you picked (a), please turn to page 127. If you picked (b), please turn to page 135.”

So imagine that in a movie…like a romantic comedy. This, is the future of television. Drawbacks: no theater showings. Advantages: being able to watch a normal movie and make it just the way you want it. It would border on video game territory, because at different parts in the story it would stop and allow you to follow the on-screen options. I’ve decided not to copyright this idea because I prefer to watch someone find it and ¬†make a ton of money, so that someday I can tell my kids, “That was my idea to begin with!” Because, how satisfying does that sound?

Still thinking about that rat foot, aren’t you? Sicko. Ok, for the record, this was not my child–I am not covering for myself. So my friend has a cat that loves to catch gifts of rats and mice and leave them dead at the door step. (see, it can’t be me–I don’t have a cat.) Apparently at some point today, said baby managed to find a piece of said rat and put it in her mouth before her horrified mother could find it and pull it out. There, you satisfied?


excerpts from today

Watching Violet eat couscous for dinner, I realized this; when you’re 8 months old, eating is as much about the journey as the destination. That’s why I have a hard time getting annoyed when “food time” is really just a prequel to “mess time.” She would attempt to pick up the little granules of couscous in a tiny fist, and by opening it atop her mouth, would lose the majority down her sleeve and in her lap. Food is fun.

As you probably know, today is April Fool’s Day. This year I kept it simple and merely announced on facebook that I was expecting. Who would believe a pregnancy announcement on april fool’s day? Apparently a lot of my friends. It would be pretty ironic if I was actually pregnant. I’m not, but it would be.

I finished painting the downstairs bathroom today. I should really take a picture and post it. I’m never afraid to take risks with color, and this time I think it paid off. Imagine the color blue you would find on the wallmart sign. Now imagine I painted a bathroom that color. You would be wrong; that would be gross. Actually, imagine a blue/green/teal that you might find on the walls of an aquarium. You would be close.

Problem: Violet discovered that the walls open up to show her a whole new playground of unprecedented wonders. You might scoff at her discovery of my bathroom cupboards, but I shudder. And so it starts; today a baby eating cotton balls, tomorrow flushing a curling iron down the toilet.


Overheard today at Costco

“Eeny, meeny, miny, mo!”

“I’ve been looking for pens all day.”

“They don’t have those spring rolls that I like.”

“You sound like a little man!”

“…goes well with some avocado.”

“What would I do with two of ’em?”

“It’s just so darn good, I can’t wait for it to thicken up.”

“Daddy, want me to sing a song to you?”

“I tell ya, when we got back, I took a shower every day.”

“Don’t know, don’t care.”

I can’t believe it expires that quick!”

“I find a margarita in the morning really launches my day.”


of Easter dresses, and bunnies and posers–not poseurs.

Things That Make Me Happy: unexpectedly finding a friend who has a hand-tame rabbit that I can sit next to Violet for her Easter pictures. Luckily, I also have a friend who has a daughter the same age, so that way we can help each other out with baby and bunny wrangling.

Ideas For a Cute Photo Shoot: Easter dresses on the babies. A whole carrot with the carrot greens still attached for the babies to feed the bunny. A sunny, dry¬†day in the park would be perfect, but…this is Washington. Outdoor lighting would really be ideal though. Any ideas Ashley?

Today I made the best baking powder biscuits I have ever (ever) ever tasted.

make these as soon as you get up tomorrow morning. No “Iff’s” “ands” or “But’s”…well, maybe a bigger butt.

The Most Amazing Biscuits Ever*

2 cups all purpose flour

1 T sugar

1 t salt

3 t baking powder

1/2 cup cold butter

(optional) dash of dill/nutmeg/chipotle pepper powder/thyme/rosemary/etc. depending on what you are serving it with. I did dill and it was awesome.

3/4 cup cold water.

Heat oven to 450. Mix dry ingredients together. Cut in cold butter with a pastry cutter (no touching with hands) till butter bits are the size of bread crumbs–no bigger than a pinky fingernail. Pour cold water over the top and mix gently with fork–don’t over mix.¬† As soon as the dough is formed, place it on a flour-dusted counter top and roll or press till 1/2 inch thick. Use an inverted glass or a biscuit cutter to cut out the biscuits and place them on a baking tray. Take the remaining dough bits and gently gently gently press them into a 1/2 inch thick round and cut out remaining biscuits. Take the leftover bits and just bake them along with the biscuits for like…7-12 minutes ish (?) I just waited till they were lightly brown on top. serve hot.

*Disclaimer: these might not actually be the best biscuits you’ve ever had, because it might be that I am just better at this whole baking thing than you are.


Twitter tweets are for birds

and self-absorbed narcissists. Do you Twitter?¬†Please stop. Everyone, please stop! This media darling needs to be disposed of the old-fashioned way, back before people thought everyone cared about what they ate for lunch or how mad they¬†are at their cable company. The hottest new Twitter phase? Celebrity tweets; because you really do need to know what J-Lo, Scar-Jo, and Li-Lo are thinking–right now.

I applaud the inventors of this idea; they give us an intimate pulse on sunken societal values, where a “Me-First” generation can truly appreciate the art of self.


Here’s to my day

Here’s to my sibling that wrote “Hi” on my windshield with pieces of tortilla.

Here’s to the man out walking with a walkman and headphones.

Here’s to my daughter who stole her friend’s teething cookie and put the whole thing in her mouth till it dissolved.

Here’s to the little boy at the grocery store that made my daughter laugh.

Here’s to my husband who smacked his head on a doorjam today at work.

Here’s to my sister-in-law who named her son today; Ethan Pace.

Here’s to the cat my daughter loves.

Here’s to me holding Violet while I vacuumed to keep her from being scared of the vacuum cleaner.

Here’s to my brother’s girlfriend for forgetting her phone…again.

Here’s to friends at small group.

Here’s to family at small group.

Here’s to my life.


Great things that come in 4’s

A four leaf clover

The Beatles

The Indiana Jones series

The Gospels

Four horsemen of the Apocalypse

North, South, East, West

Four chambers in a heart

Four seasons of the year

The number of movements in a symphony

Four suits of playing cards

The Fantastic Four

A quartet

Players needed in the game of Foursquare

The Libby brothers.

That’s right–Violet is still the only girl cousin. My sister-in-law had her baby this morning,and her track record is still going strong: boy #4. Here’s a cute picture of Violet and her new little cousin who she wanted nothing to do with.



play pretend

So I guess most kids experiment with cigarettes in junior high these days. That certainly was true¬†fora couple of my brothers. Of course, keep in mind that we were homeschooled growing up, so their introduction to smoking was really via the private-school boys next door who encouraged the idea of smoking.¬†Don’t freak out Mom, when homeschoolers get introduced to smoking by the goody-goody private-school boys next door, they end up smoking grass. Like yard grass…rolled up in printer paper.¬† furtively lighting matches in the woods and trying to smoke green grass and bits of tree leaves.

That’ll probably be me someday; catching my child trying to smoke wood chips behind the garage, or making a pretend tattoo with a permanent marker. Children love pretending, experimenting, trying. Just today, Violet was chewing gum…made from some paper she’d stolen from the corner of a page in a book.¬† She wasn’t swallowing it, just sitting there, chewing and drooling.

AJ is watching boxing online. That is a sport that was invented by a man.


Now AJ is dancing with Violet , and she tired so she’s laughing and crying


The first of the Mohawkians

So yeah….Violet is bald on the sides of her head, but the hair strip down the center of her head¬†is alive and well. My sweet little daughter has a mohawk. I had tons of hair when I was a baby, but AJ was bald, so I was really hoping that God would give Violet my hair genes and not his–except that I wanted her to have his curly hair. Now she has both. Bill Cosby said it best when he said, “God has a sense of humor.”

Now accepting application for the position of rich, dying, eccentric great–aunt with no other heirs. is that wrong?


this reminds me…

my bedroom is a mess. M-E-S-S. This reminds me of a goat named Pammy.

Goats are smart…forget dolphins or monkeys, goats are the possibly the smartest creatures in the animal kingdom.¬† When I was little, we lived on an old farm, with an older house. Everything about that house was like a mini-time capsule to the days when my great-grandfather was a farmer.¬† The walls were insulated with sheep’s wool, the floors were made of brick, and the only doors with wobbly knobs were outside doors.¬† Having goats, this meant that anything inside the house was not only a huge source of curiosity, but also available to any goat with enough determination and concentration. Usually, they would work on the door knob till it wobbled open and then it was a mad dash to the open bag of dog food inside the door till they were caught. Of course, if the door was open, the whole house was declared “open season” by all other nearby animals…and chickens.

The worst attack ever occured on a Sunday. We¬†were gone to church all morning and afternoon, which meant there had been plenty of time for a determined, concentrated goat. As we pulled up the hill and the house came into view, we knew immediately something was up when the front door was open and a chicken was standing in the open loft window. Running into the house, we found 5 or 6 goats and a dozen or so chickens running out the other door and leaving a ransacked house in their wake. There were still a few chickens we caught in the kitchen, a goat that had wandered up to the loft and was taste-testing a pillow, but at the end of the house we found the instigator…the oldest…the smartest; Pammy. She looked up at us, placidly chewing her cud as if to say, “It’s Sunday! Why else would I be lying stretched out on¬†the biggest bed in the house¬†with an open bible in front of me?”

Pammy was a milk goat, so we didn’t eat her.


ten random notes of randomness

1. If I were a fruit, I would be an apple. Fuji maybe…Braeburn, Cameo. In a completely unrelated note, the smell of an especially juicy¬†apple just after you’ve taken a bite reminds me of horse breath. Not in a bad way though.

2. Something You Should Never Do: don’t own a chimp, or any other potentially dangerous exotic animal. How is this not a no-brainer for more people?

3. I am always running late, so sometimes I do my makeup in the car (not while driving). I’ve always thought that it would be horrible to get in an accident while I was curling my eyelashes because I would probably pull my eyelids off.

4. Left to their own devices, my feet might be hairier than my husbands. Don’t get grossed out yet–his feet are basically bald…and mine aren’t.

5. I read about a product the other day; it was an alarm clock that had a vibrating attachment you could put under your bed to shake you awake. It was my idea first. Once when I was 9, I was trying to get up early to make my mom a¬† Mother’s Day breakfast. Dilemma: must use an alarm to get up that early, but musn’t wake anyone. Solution: take the wind-up bell alarm clock and place it against my left ear. Wrap clock to head¬†with a hand towel. I didn’t anticipate waking with a near heart-attack while trying to rip the towel off my head to stop the loud ringing in my ears. Anyway, that vibrating alarm could have saved me some grief.

6. Me+Laser Hair Removal=someday.

7. I can hear people gulp when they swallow. It’s gross.

8. When I’m out running, I make a point to never stop running in sight of the person who may have seen me start running. That way, no one knows how much of a wimp I am.

9. How is it the 21st century, and people are still having babies much the same way they always have?

10. I always told myself I would never let my children eat in the car. Now I jump at the chance to placate Violet by putting cheerios on her lap when she’s in the carseat.



Today was Violet’s first official playdate. And so it starts.¬† I feel like such a “soccer mom” saying that. Truthfully, playdates at this age are little more than a chance for the moms to have someone else entertain their baby for once. Violet and Isla seemed more interested in what they could do to each other than with each other. Instead of playing together, they examine the facets of the other baby; how easy they are to climb on, what the inside of their mouth looks¬† like, and what their clothes taste like.¬† Seriously, they were more interested in each other from a functional standpoint (“…if I crawl over her, I can get to that toy easier”) than from a relational standpoint. Violet gets more interested in a cat than another baby at this point.


Quote of the Day

“Somewhere between my brain and my hand, it got all goofed up.” –anonymous

AJ and I went to a little Mexican bakery in town today. Now, I’m all about eating authentic foods, but Mexican bakeries are a joke! Its like they take one type of bland cookie/breadish dough and then just shape it into different shapes and fill it with different things and cover it in sugar–they all taste the same! Plus, the bakery was pretty nasty inside.

So I’m curious; quite a few of you read my blog, so answer me this:

Have you ever had anything good? Do they make good things? Don’t get me wrong: I’m a taco-truck devotee with the best of them, but the whole bakery idea just isn’t working for me.


Most Embarrassing Moment

Don’t worry,¬†this isn’t my most¬†most embarrassing moment. I have too many to pick a favorite.

I was reminded of this story the other day when I was looking through some of my brother’s pictures on facebook. I was 16, and a girl, which means pretty much anything can get filed under the “Most Embarrassing Moment” category. My mom and I had gone to Florida for his wedding, and at the airport we were picked up by my brother and his best man (i think that’s what he was). Anyway, he was totally cute, which meant I automatically had a major crush for the weekend. Plus, he was way older–bonus!

As the weekend progressed, I kept finding myself doing little stupid things in front of him; I giggled too much, got red too often, and once in the middle of¬†telling him¬†a¬†story, I actually coughed and gagged on my own phlegm. Don’t make that face–you have phlegm too when you get a cold.

In the end, phlegm proved to be the lesser of the two evils. It was the last day, and we were all together sharing a brunch. I was just finishing a blueberry smoothie thing when it happened: He finally started noticing me! For the next half an hour, I flirted, I smiled, I laughed. I was getting a great response too, because he genuinely seemed to be smiling a lot, and watching me closely. I decided to withdraw to the ladies room to make sure I was looking gorgeous, but one look in the mirror told me the rest of the story. My teeth, the inside of my mouth, and my lips were stained  blue. Like Smurf Blue.


Because, what else am I going to write about?

Once when I was young, I almost killed a greedy chicken.

Who: My brother, a goat, some greedy chickens, and I.

Where: In the barn at my childhood farm in Eastern Washington.

What: I think thats already been established.

When: 1995ish

Why? Well thats the best part. Milking time was always the most exciting time of the day on our farm. The goats knew they were getting grain, the sheep heard and were jealous, the horse hung his head over the fence in curiosity, the cat came running in hopes of a freebie, and the chickens and geese¬†acted on¬†their stealth attack plan. You see, in the life of an animal, food is everything–especially forbidden food, and unfortunately for us, all the animals knew that if one succeeded in stealing food–the rest of them stood a chance of scoring as well. Furthermore, there was no better time to try than at milking time. (Did I mention most of our animals were free-ranging in the summer?)

So, to make a long story short; Coloray and I head out to the 55-gallon grain bins holding a 5 gallon bucket. One of us would hold the animals at bay while the other one snapped the lid off the barrel and filled the five-gallon bucket. Then, we would race into the barn and slam the gate behind us to keep out the goats and sheep, although unfortunately not the chickens. Next, we would let the first goat in while trying to open the gate just wide enough to get one goat, and not all the goats. The ones outside would be craning their necks and standing on their hind legs to see what would come of that bucket of glorious grain.

Here’s where it went all wrong (or right, depending on who you ask). Since Coloray was milking the first goat up in the stanchion, I sat down on one of the open buckets of grain to keep chickens out while I kicked with my feet around the other bucket. Finally, there was such a cluster of chickens on the second bucket (and even one inside)’ that I decided to switch buckets. In fact, I decided to move fast enough to trap that chicken inside the bucket. I sat down fast and I could feel the chicken flapping around underneath me. I wasn’t squishing it–there was plenty of room, but I figured if that chicken wanted to be greedy, it could be greedy trapped in a bucket of grain–serve the stupid bird right!

It wasn’t long before I noticed the flapping and jumping slowing down, and when it stopped altogether, I decided to see what was going on. When I stood up, I realized the chicken had not been in the bucket after all. It had managed to get out quickly enough that it decided to get one last mouthful before I proceeded to sit down across it’s neck.

Mental Picture: White five-gallon bucket. Girl sitting on bucket. Chicken’s body on the outside. Chicken’s head on the inside.

Don’t worry, chickens are surprisingly resilient. It walked in circles the rest of the day, but after that it was fine.


Does this story make me a bad person?