Sunday, July 26, 2009

Calming back to sanity

While I enjoy music, much of it starts to sound like noise when combined with the incessant demands of little ones and the necessity of thinking clearly, whether about dinner or the bills. But I've discovered a new CD that doesn't seem to compete the same way. I got it at church for Mother's Day. It's called Tis Sweet to Sing the Matchless Love. The songs are early American hymns performed on traditional instruments. I find that playing it gives my children a calmer, happier mother.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Thirteenth Child

I've recently finished reading Thirteenth Child by Patricia Wrede. I enjoyed reading about an American frontier in which magic is real. It was nice to see the heroine grow and figure out a few things. And it was fun to read a whole book quickly. It's been awhile. Now I just need a sequel...

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Peanut butter and chocolate bliss

The other night I needed a treat to make, and it needed to use up some whole wheat flour. I found this, Whole Wheat Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bars with Chocolate Chips:

They've been a hit. Even Young A, who has been begging me not to cook with whole grains, decided they have enough sugar to be acceptable. Instead he asks for more because, "they're sooo good."

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Christmas in July

The Professor brought home a collection of Connie Willis short stories called Miracle and Other Christmas Stories. I like short stories right now. I like Connie Willis (although I've only read her short stories.) It was fun. I enjoyed them, even in July. Only, now I need to see Miracle on 34th Street sometime.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Bedtime tips

Should you ever see your two year old toddling into the living room at bedtime, smelling of strawberry shampoo, you will know you have ignored him too long. You will also know that it's time to open a new bottle of shampoo. But be grateful he just put it on his hair instead of smearing it everywhere.

Should you smell nail polish instead, hurry to the bathroom to clean up the black nail polish he helped himself to in his quest to imitate his sisters' painted nails. And be grateful he was in his pajamas so the spots don't matter so much.

Should both of these happen within a month, know that it is time to stop ignoring your son at bedtime. Your hope that he will not disturb others will crash with the reality that he will disturb you. It is time to change what you are doing. It is not working.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

...and jam

The great prices on good strawberries and blueberries have inspired me to try a new kind of jam, strawberry-blueberry freezer jam. It didn't set quite as hard as some (which I blame on the pectin), but it seems tasty and adds a bit of variety to our current store of grape jelly, peach jam, and strawberry. Besides, it's pretty. And I think that is one of my favorite things about jam.

Saturday, July 18, 2009


I love the idea of whole wheat bread. I don't always enjoy the actual product. The Professor puts up with it but wishes it were white. So I keep trying new recipes. I've finally found a promising one here:

It's the best whole wheat sandwich bread I've made yet. Even the Professor thinks so. He won't say it compares with white (for fear that I'll stop making it), but he eats it willingly. And having it in the house has reminded me how much I enjoy bread and milk with the right bread.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Domestic Days

Lately, I seem to be alternating between tired and domestic. I'm finding it is fun to take pictures of my domestic accomplishments. That way, even when they've disappeared, I have proof that I have accomplished something, such as freezing enough blueberries for this year's pies.