Monday, January 30, 2012

Labor of Love

Homemade Naan:

1c warm water
2 1/4tsp dry active yeast
1tsp sugar

allow your yeast to activate then add

3tbs milk
1 egg, beaten
2.5c white flour
2c flour
1/4c sugar
garlic to taste, optional if you don't like garlic
salt- I add maybe 2 tsp. I never really measure. You can add more less, depending on how much salt you like in your bread.

Mix together. Knead the dough for about 5 minutes, until it's nice and elastic. Put it in an oiled glass dish, cover with a damp cloth, and let rise, until it's doubled in size- 1-1.5 hours. Punch it down and kneed again.  divide it into 9-12 balls of dough. Put them on a pan, cover, and let them rise again.  I like to warm my oven and let them sit for about 30 minutes.

Then get your rolling pen and heat your skillet. I cook my naan in a cast iron skillet or griddle on medium/high heat. At this point, I like to melt some butter and add some garlic and maybe a little crushed red pepper or fresh ground black pepper to it. Now, while your skillet is heating, you roll out your dough. I do them one at a time as I cook.

Roll them out pretty thin, in an oval sort of shape. Brush some of your melted butter on one side, the slap that bad boy in the hot skillet.

It will need to cook 1-2 minutes on each side, depending on the heat of your skillet. It should start to form a few nice bubbles and look like this:

Brush the uncooked side with your garlic butter then flip it and let the other side cook. Do the same thing with each one until you have them all cooked. Serve with a yummy curry, or maybe my very own version of Mulligatawny Soup.

Friday, January 27, 2012

9 months and counting

B celebrated an important milestone this week. She has been on the outside for as long as she was on the inside. She weighed in at exactly 20lbs, and is an impressive 29in tall at her well baby check up today. She's got one, adorable little tooth sticking up out of her gums. She is SO smart and engaging. She loves playing peek-a-boo. She'll cover her face with her shirt, or a blanket, and just laugh when she pulls it back down. This week she started putting her shirt over MY face, which was even funnier. She enjoys sharing her toys with me, i.e. force feeding me teething toys. I saw her sharing her toys with R too the other day. She is incredibly mischievous and relentlessly curious to just be 9 months old. She tries to climb things already, and she's not even walking yet. Baby B, I can't say it enough, you have been the perfect addition to our family!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

My Little Buddy

R has been really reluctant to do any school type activities this week. He's been a lot more interested in playing. Which is ok for now. I did notice that he is finally recognizing purple and orange and pink. I'm going to try to get in a letter C lesson before the week is out. I want to keep making progress on letter recognition.

He was talking to me last night about moving from our old house, and how I went to the doctor to have sister. It was really sweet to listen to him articulate his memories. Then he tried to tell me that he wanted milk (to nurse). We talked about how he was a big boy now, and too big to nurse. So he told me how beautiful the milk was, and gave it kisses. Then he told didn't want to be big, he wanted to stay little. He's been telling me that a lot lately. I always tell him that he's my little buddy, and he can stay little as long as he wants. This conversation usually ends with lots of snuggles.

There's such a push for kids to grow up fast and rush through childhood. And the time passes so quickly as it is. Why rush it? This is the only time in his life he can play unhindered.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

While I'm Waiting (whiny tl;dr)

For my ibuprofen to kick in, I thought I'd update my blog. Seems like life has been full of little frustrations the last week or so. My knees are hurting again and being in pain all.the.time makes me cranky and irritable. It's hard for me to get around the house and chase after the kids. We still only have one working vehicle, so the kids and I are still stuck at home all day. It's been raining a lot, so we haven't been able to go outside much. B's not been sleeping well, so I've not been resting much at night. She's not even been napping that well. I have to nurse her down on our bed and sneak away. So my room is held hostage while she does nap, even though we moved her bed to her room a couple of weeks ago. She napped in her room just fine for months, but now that her bed is back there, she doesn't want to. She's also been very clingy the last few weeks. She has major mommy separation anxiety. Which is normal, she's 9 months old. But it's frustrating. I feel like I can't even get the basics done (dishes and laundry). I'm pissy and exhausted, and the house is a mess. I got 2/3 through a hat only to run out of yarn. I can't go back to the LYS in Macon until the 4th at best to get more of what I ran out of. I have no car to get there and no money anyway. We're trying to relist our house in Fayetteville as rental, and running into obstacles with that. I was hoping we could get it listed before the 1st, but that's not looking very likely. I'm also really lonely. I have no friends here. I've tried to make friends with the other younger mom at church, but that hasn't panned out at all. The spouses group for the AF wives sucks. I tried to get a yarn working group together, but no one was interested enough to make it happen. I'd like to be able to go do some of the classes and knitting groups at the LYS, but I can't leave the baby without her screaming the whole time, and she's still nursing a lot. Again with the separation anxiety.

However, on a positive note, J filed our taxes Friday and we're getting a really big refund this year, with the second mortgage, our move, and having a 2nd child. Almost 10k. We're still debating about what we're going to do with it. Both cars need work. J wants to put up some fencing. I need to pay off what we owe on R's dental work. And we'd really like to remodel our kitchen. Or we could pay off my loan with Sallie Mae. I'm thinking I might ask J to get me a Kindle for my birthday. So much to think about.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Preschool Notes- Week of 1/15

Since we are doing more school work, I will try to post notes of what we're doing and how R is progressing. I'm using materials from for writing practice worksheets and coloring sheets.

Week of 1/15

-tracing large letters- A, B, R, T
-recognizing letters A, B, O, X, R
-1 to 1 counting up to 9
-counting backward from 10-1
-counting forward 1-20, skips 13, 14, and 15, saying 16 instead
-memorizing song lyrics and words to books. 'reads' and sings to himself
-drew a recognizable picture of a pizza.

R has made a lot of progress with writing and drawing. Until recently he hasn't been allowed much access to writing utensils because he would eat them. He would eat crayons in all forms, and bite the tips off markers. Now he likes to use markers and paint. Last week he was attempting to make letters with his paint brush. That was a first. He traces large letters, but not the smaller letters on lined paper. He doesn't seem to grasp connecting letters to words yet, or to their sounds. I'm continuing to work with him on it. We're going to start working our way through the alphabet working on letter recognition and tracing. We're also working on counting objects with 1 to 1 correlation. He's gotten much better at this recently.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

New year, New hat

I worked up a new pattern this week, I'm calling it a Fishnet Tam. The idea came to me as I was knitting chin straps for my elf hats. What if I made an entire hat that was based on yo, k2tog? So I did. I was pleasantly surprised.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Good news Tuesday

Awesome trip to the pediatric surgeon today. The verdict was no surgery for R! The doctor said he does have a mild dystasis, but that it won't warrant surgery. It will correct itself as he continues to grow and develop, possibly even until he is a teenager.

We're also having good results with his school work. We'd back off for a few months because he wasn't interested or focused enough to do much beyond play to learn. But since the holidays there have been some signs that he might be ready to try a little more structure. And sure enough, we've had a lot of good progress with letters in the last week and a half. He's attempting to make some on his own, as well as being willing to trace letters on a page. He had a good time this morning tracing letters on his coloring sheets. His ability to count objects with one to one correlation is coming along well too. He got all the way to 10 last night while we were reading a bedtime story. I'm very proud of my little man.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

New Work in the New Year

Starting off the new year with a bang. Here's all the work I have completed since Christmas:

I bought 145 coordinating, hand painted vintage buttons last week, to use in projects like the buttons scarves!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Well Hello There 2012

Taking a few minutes to bring my blog into the new year! We had very enjoyable holidays here in GA. My family visited for Christmas which was great! We had a small blip with a broken pipe the Monday after Christmas, but it was fixed easily by the plumber. J desperately wanted to fix it himself, but didn't have the skills to do the job. The kids are really enjoying all their new loot. They got some really nice gifts from us and from their extended family.

R has had the post Christmas crazies the last week, and finally seems to be settling back down now that we are back to our normal routine at last. He has his first appointment with the pediatric surgeon next week to determine if he will need abdominal surgery to correct his weak abdominal wall. Not really looking forward to that. B is a ball of fire. She is so lively and independent. She seems older than her 8 months because of how active she is. She explores the house and has adventures with her brother. They love each other so much. They go off together and play in his bedroom without needing me. I peek in on them, but I don't hover. The house is pretty well baby safe, so she can crawl around without too much worry. She is also cruising the furniture and has stood alone a couple of times. I think she will walk before her birthday. She makes lots of cute baby talk too. She babbles with a wide variety of sounds and syllables. We don't think she's said any words yet though. She started clapping when she's really happy or excited, and she will play peekaboo with her blanket (although not on command, only when she feels like it). I think she may finally have a tooth too. We thought she cut one back in Oct. but it's stayed lumped up right under the gum. Yesterday she had a pretty white point we think is the real deal. She hasn't let me check it today.

I got my inventory and year end report for my sales at the WACO gallery for 2011, things were really good for me in the first and last quarter. I took maternity/moving leave between March and September though, and produced 0 work during that time. I'm just about sold out again, so I'm working hard right now to produce some new work. I've got a stack of elf hats finished, and will start working on adult hats and buttons scarves next. In Feb. I think I will start focusing on making some spring and summer baby items. I'm hoping to market the elf hats year round, and start making a few layette sets now that I am more proficient with baby sweaters. Then cotton tams for adults. And eventually during the summer I will start building fall and winter inventory. My goal is to grow my business in 2012. I feel like the is potential there.

I don't think I wrote about the changes at Up and Dyed, and how the artists there have formed a co-op called WACO (Wearable Art Co-Op). There are 12 artists exhibiting, and there is now an application for membership, and we all contribute our time every month to the running of the co-op. Mine is done primarily through the computer and the internet since we can't visit every month. It helps spread the responsibility around among all the exhibiting artists. We all pay a 25% commission on our sales to the owner, which in turn helps keep the doors open and the lights on. It's been a good change.