- Elisabeth just went down for a late morning nap after finishing off a 6 oz bottle (yay Lizzie!).
- The girls have been watching through the parlor window while a man replaces the windshield of Donald's car (there was an unfortunate incident with a golf-ball sized rock getting kicked up by a semi....and the rest is history).
- I am trying to resist the Girl Scout cookies that are tempting me in the pantry.
- Donald is off at work doing whatever it is that he does (It has to do with plutonium but the details bore me).
- And my younger sister Jennifer...she is on a plane somewhere above Northern California en route to visit us! A whole week of laughter and fun and health food (because she is into health food, and we should be too). She'll convince me to stay away from those Girl Scout cookies, I'm sure.
Posting may or may not be sporadic while she's here. I might be off having too grand a time to sit down at the computer. But then again, I might just be having such a grand time that I'll want to share every last detail.
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Bean Soup with Kale
1 tablespoon olive oil or canola oil
8 large garlic cloves, crushed or minced
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
4 cups chopped raw kale
4 cups low-fat, low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
2 (15 ounce) cans white beans, such as cannellini or navy, undrained
4 plum tomatoes, chopped
2 teaspoons dried Italian herb seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup chopped parsley
1. In a large pot, heat olive oil. Add garlic and onion; saute until soft. Add kale and saute, stirring, until wilted. Add 3 cups of broth, 2 cups of beans, and all of the tomato, herbs, salt and pepper. Simmer 5 minutes. In a blender or food processor, mix the remaining beans and broth until smooth. Stir into soup to thicken. Simmer 15 minutes. Ladle into bowls; sprinkle with chopped parsley.
A delicious blend of tastes and textures. Did I enjoy it? Yes. But I'd probably only want it once a season (not something I would put on our regular dinner menu). Also, it's not very family friendly. Lorelai never took a bite...not a one. Alexandra was polite and ate a respectable amount, but I could tell that she wasn't loving it.
So for now I'll put this recipe back in the box and wait till next winter to pull it out again. Maybe by then Lorelai will be willing to take a little taste...
Monday, March 29, 2010
5 years ago we bought this house. What a blessing it is to have our own little place in the world; a refuge from the scary realities of the world; a place to raise our children and provide them comfort and safety.
As we carried out our annual celebration (complete with cake) I asked each family member what their favorite thing is about our home:
Lorelai - My favorite part of the house is the kitchen.
Lisa - Why the kitchen?
Lorelai - Because that's where all the food is.
Lisa - And Alexandra, what's your favorite part about our house?
Alexandra - (giggling and taking Lorelai's lead) The pantry.
Lisa - (already knowing the answer asks:) Why?
Alexandra - Because there's lots of food.
Lisa - Donald, what's your favorite part?
Donald - The garage. It's the place where I get to make all the decisions (True, true. I make all decisions regarding the inside of the house and he gets the outside. Divide and conquer I say.). But after that I like the living room.
And even though I didn't interview myself outloud, I'll interview myself now so that we have a full and complete account of who-likes-what-parts-of-the-house.
Lisa - What do you like best about the house?
Me - I love the parlor....all of my intruments sitting there just waiting to make music. I also love Elisabeth and Lorelai's room.
Oops. I just realized that we are missing Elisabeth in this little interview. Now, I know Elisabeth can't talk or express her thoughts, but I am quite sure that if she could, she would say that her favorite part of our home is the bathtub. She has lost interest in many things lately, but not splashing. She is a spashing queen.
Happy 5th Birthday House!!
Sunday, March 28, 2010
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup applesauce
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 cups grated carrots
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup butter, softened
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 cups confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped pecans
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour two 9 inch round pans.
2. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, applesauce, white sugar, brown sugar and 3 teaspoons vanilla. Mix in flour, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in carrots. Fold in pecans. Pour into prepared pans.
3. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pans for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
4. To Make Frosting: In a medium bowl, combine butter, cream cheese, confectioners' sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Stir in chopped pecans. Frost the cooled cake.
We were in need of a cake to celebrate our home's 5th birthday (more on that later) so I decided on carrot cake. It's something that I love to eat but have never made from scratch before. Also, with Easter coming up next Sunday it seemed seasonally appropriate.
Was it good? You better believe it! Donald even called me 'a domestic goddess' when he came in the house and smelled the delicious aroma coming from the oven. And the taste....oh the taste!!! It was every bit as good as the smell....no...better than the smell. Thick, moist, and flavorful.
Two thumbs up from every member of the Sorenson family!
Friday, March 26, 2010
Elisabeth was with us too, but didn't care much about the rocks...so Lorelai went and fetched her sock monkey from her crib.
Then we continued on with our business.
Lorelai thought of 101 things for us to do with her rocks. We sorted them by color and by size. And when the fun of that was over we paired them up by which ones would make best friends. Oh the imagination of a 5 year old!
And then I noticed a little fairy on Lorelai's duvet cover. I pointed out that she had her hand stretched out like she wanted to hold one of the rocks. So we gave her one. Suddenly it went from ordinary rock to magical crystal ball.
Finally we played a game where we had to close our eyes and pull rocks out of a bag. There was one rock that had been predetermined as the bad rock. If you pulled that one out you had to put all your rocks back in and start over.
By this time Elisabeth had had enough and went back to her usual routine of head banging.
But Lorelai, she had the time of her life.
Thursday, March 25, 2010
When that happens be prepared to pick up millions of scraps of garbage from all over the backyard.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Well, I guess it wasn't because comments were more like, 'shunt? where's the shunt?' Funny, because the shunt was one of the first things I noticed when I looked at those pictures. It was like greeting an old friend, one I don't see (or notice) much anymore,
Long story short (too late for that I suppose) I pulled out a baby picture of Elisabeth so you could easily see what the shunt looks like as well as it's placement on her head:
Same shunt, no revisions.
(another topic in the comments section yesterday):
But...she has Lorelai's hair and eye color.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
This is Elisabeth in the morning....with her hair freshly combed. This is before she starts her head-banging (all she does anymore) and before she gets her helmet strapped to her head for the day (which ruins the 'do').
But enough about her hair, look at that face. Have you ever seen such a beautiful, perfect little face? It makes me melt and every time I look at her I feel that I must be the luckiest mother alive. Seriously.
So Elisabeth is beautiful (as always) but other aspects of her life have not been so rosy lately.
~She is forgetting how to eat.
~I can't remember the last time I saw her crawl. (months maybe?)
~Very little interest in playing with toys.
~Prefers banging her head to any other activity.
~Her legs are starting to become deformed (traveling to Spokane next week to get some answers on that).
~Will not put any weight on her legs.
But never fear, there is good news.....
~She hasn't spit-up in a few weeks!
[Notice her shunt? Once her hair dries (and poofs) you can't even see it.]
Monday, March 22, 2010
Last week was CRAZY. It went down something like this:
****Congrats to my nephew Matthew! I heard that you had an awesome weekend playing rugby!!!
Friday, March 19, 2010
lb meat sliced thin
Nappa Cabbage cut in half and then 1-11/2" slices
Carrots peeled and slided on diagonal
Fresh spinach chopped
put oil in wok on high heat
Add Garlic powder
When meat is done add soy sauce, oyster sauce and 2 tsp sugar
stir until tender
add rest of vegetables
cook until tender
add 1/3 c water if necessary
Recipe submitted by Stephanie
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
3 years in a row???
Yes, I dare.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Every girl needs
Monday, March 15, 2010
Dear Evelyn, Lilly, Tessa and Henry,
Sunday, March 14, 2010
Hearty Split Pea Soup
16 ounces dried split peas
2 cups diced fully cooked lean ham
1 cup diced carrots
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
5 cups boiling water
1 cup hot milk
In a slow cooker, layer the first nine ingredients in order listed (do not stir). Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or until vegetables are tender. Stir in milk. Discard bay leaves before serving.
Friday, March 12, 2010
***Alexandra's class has been talking a lot the past week or two about perseverance; about never giving up and about believing in yourself even when things seem impossible. I think the video is a fun (and funny) way to illustrate that.
Thursday, March 11, 2010
My dad painted this picture. Isn't it lovely? It's one of my all time faves (up there with Across the Way, which was painted by my Grandfather (my dad's dad)).
I remember once telling him how wonderful I thought it was. He brushed the compliment aside and told me that a real artist would look at it and laugh. I know I am not a real artist, and perhaps I don't know the rights and wrongs of painting, but I do know beautiful when I see it, and it is beautiful.
My father passed away 6 years ago today. I think it's always important to stop and reflect and remember those who have come (and gone) before us. It's important to remember the good....and the bad. That's how we learn about life. That's how we as people can become better.
So today I have been on the phone with my mom, and we have reminisced. He is so clear in my memory...he is not an easy person to forget. It's strange to me that he died before Lorelai was even born; it seems like she's been around forever....but truly it doesn't seem like he's been gone that long. I remember him like it was yesterday. I wonder if that will ever change?
Every March my mother-in-law Susan volunteers at the Eastgate Elementary School book fair. It's a tradition that has been going strong for years (decades?). And traditionally, every March she calls to let me know what days/times she'll be there so that I can bring the children by.
Yesterday was that day.
The children held tight to their wallets, browsed through all the books, and made some pretty fine purchases.
- Curious George and the Pizza Party
- Dinner with Olivia
- Sports Illustrated Kids: Girl Power
- Diary of a Wimpy Kid
- Disney 3/pack of books (Hannah Montana, H.S. Musical, Camp Rock)
- 4 pencils
[Grandma Sorenson ringing up the girls purchases.]
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
rough for Elisabeth lately...
to help make her troubles float away.
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Lorelai @ 11:30 on Saturday morning: