Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Oatmeal cookies aren't my favorite cookie. But, The Joy of Cooking has a great oatmeal cookie recipe. They are crispy but still have a cookie texture. The three and I recently made the cookies and shared them with friends and family.
I am learning how to do the cooking and baking stint with the children. One thing I've found helpful is to give each one of them their own utensil. This kept them happy and engaged. It also gives them something to lick when we are finished.

After we were finished, this mama was very happy when her son, completely unprompted, started wiping off our work area. A good cook is a good cleaner.

Far Away from Greece

Oh my gosh. If you can get this yogurt where you live, the babes and I are seriously mad at you. Our good friend Newt came to see us a few weeks ago and brought this delectable honey flavored yogurt. It is one of the best things I've ever eaten. I thought poor Elliott was going to make himself sick on it. I am only a little embarrassed to say we finished the entire container during one lunch. If I could buy this where I live, I'd never need ice cream again.


The girls love their Cabbage Patch Kids my grandma gave them for their birthdays. They sleep with them every night and most mornings they get them out of their cribs and bring them to the family room.
Lucia's child is Georgetta, Mazie's is Imogene. These pictures with their arms around their babes are not staged. They were sitting like that on their own.
One night when I was rocking Mazie before bedtime, we were talking about Imogene. I said, "Imogene, Imogene." Mazie said, "Imogene. Imogene. Mama Kate a gene. Mama Kate a gene."
We are so glad the girls have these new sweet friends.

Gone to Pot

A little reading material helps make potty training easier: Mazie and her John Deere catalog.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Glimmers of Adolescence

This is a look we see sometimes from Lucia these days. She is squinting her eyes as if to say, "You have got to be kidding me." Sometimes she'll look at you as she is squinting. Other times she squints and slowly looks away from you and stares off into nothingness as if you are just too dumb for her to even acknowledge.

Her look reminds me a little of the first photo of this post when they were five months old. I know this is just payback, and that, as H's mom says, payback is hell.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Better Separate

We had a lot of boxes and cardboard from the birthday celebration and from the last few months of diapers, so I decided the three might like to have a bonfire and eat s'mores. In our neck of the woods, burning things is only surpassed in fun by firing guns. LEM certainly got the concept of "hot, hot" as they repeated it over and over. They did not want to go near the fire, though they did like watching it.
Here is Lu eating her snack of grapes while she waits for the fire to burn down so we can make the s'mores.

They took a few bites of the s'mores, but they didn't take to them the way I thought they would. They love graham crackers. They love marshmallows. They love chocolate. One day they will love to learn s'mores too.

Friday, September 25, 2009


They fight over the strangest things. Yesterday Lucia and Mazie were both so upset. They each wanted a square yellow rubber mat. The mat is probably two and a half feet square.

See full size image
Both girls were screaming and crying and pulling on the mat. I found it hard not to laugh because Mazie was repeatedly crying that she wanted the "Lallow" mat and Lucia was repeatedly crying that she wanted the "jiggah" mat. Jiggah is her word for yellow. She says it so earnestly. One of my favorite things to do as of late is it show Lucia something yellow and ask her what color it is. "Jiggah" she always replied, quite pleased with herself. It makes me laugh so I don't correct her. She knows, after all what color it is. It is jiggah.

So, I just took that mat away and put it on top of a chifferobe where it still sits.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Wild Geese

One of the goals I am committed to achieve before I turn 40 is to have at least 40 poems memorized. I have about a dozen that I have mostly memorized. I'd like to have a repetoire that I can always have with me. I love hearing my Grandma talk about how she used to have to take classes like recitation and elocution. Memorizing beautiful words is not valued like it used to be. When I taught school I required my students to choose one poem a month to memorize. They'd recite it in front of the class. They had a poem that always stayed with them and the rest of us were exposed to a new poem we might not have otherwise heard. I recited my poems when I am doing housework and driving or when I can't fall asleep.

I am going to post my 40 poems here for the purpose of sharing them but also to help me memorize them. I will type them from memory, only going back to fix line breaks, capitalizations, and punctuation. I hope you'll enjoy some of the poems that I love.

To start building up to my 40, I have chosen one of my absolute favorite poems: Wild Geese by Mary Oliver. H recently told me that this is her favorite poet of all the ones I've subjected her to. If you don't know May Oliver, she is a great poet to read. Her poems are beautiful and accessible. When I read her I have such a strong desire to be friends with her. She has such a deep and affirming view of life. She sees the spiritual in nature and then how it applies to life. If I could only read one poet the rest of my life, I would choose Mary Oliver.

Wild Geese
by Mary Oliver

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pepples of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the praries and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clear blue air,
are headed home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting--
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Pretty ribbons of blue

I read in a magazine a while back, probably Real Simple, that one way to help keep you linen closet organized was to tie a ribbon around a set of sheets and attach a pretty tag telling the size of the sheets. I thought that was a terrific idea. Until I gave it some thought. I don't have time to eat and go to the bathroom sometimes, and yet I am supposed to tie my sheets up like a pretty birthday present? Not only is that notion crazy, it's annoying.

Still, I thought about the end result and amended it. What I have started doing is folding one pillowcase and both sheets and putting them in the second pillow case. That way the set stays together but it takes no extra time to organize them than the actual folding, which you have to do anyway.

I hope I don't ever have the kind of life that affords the time to tie my sheets with pretty ribbons and I hope you don't either.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Oh what a little...

...chalkboard paint can do. In an effort to keep things in their proper place, I painted part of my pantry with chalkboard paint: the inset panels and the edges of the shelves. When I know I'll need to buy an item, I quickly jot it down on the designated area to the right. I also write quotes that mean something to me on one of the panels to the left. The bottom panels are open for the children to write on.
I painted the edges of the shelves with chalkboard paint. There I write down a guide to where things go. This has definitely helped me keep the pantry more organized. I feel like a have a better gauge of what I have and don't have. It is easier for me to plan my grocery trips, and I spend less time hunting mandarin orange segments because I know where I put them when I bought them.
I know these ideas are simple. I haven't reinvented the wheel. But I thought I would share some of them.

Monday, September 21, 2009


As part of the birthday shipment, my mom gave the babes the kitchen that I grew up playing with. She had it made for me for my third birthday. It is the same cheerful blue that it has always been. I am so excited that my children have it to play with. Thanks, Grancy, for making sure it got here.
The kitchen has a refrigerator, oven, sink, and bookcase. Also a lot of the dishes and food were still in them.
Lucia says, "Would anybody like a hot dog?" Mazie says, "I'll take it."

Lu and Maze playing with the Fisher Price farm. It still has all the people and animals: sheep, pig, cow, horse, cart, barn, silo, granny, pa, and kids.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Hangover Day

Ah, the day after the party was a slow day for us. We lingered around the house most of the day, until we all went down to Nana and Papa's house for ribs and chicken. The three got to spend some focused time with some of their new toys.
Here is Lucia playing with a Fisher Price toy farm that used to belong to my sister and me. For their birthday gift, my mom shipped some toys that I grew up playing with.
My sister and her family sent Lucia, Elliott, and Mazie this easel. They love using it.

H's Aunt Patti sewed these great art smocks for the kids. They love them and they fit perfectly.