Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Book Shoppe

For months now I've been thinking that I need to stop neglecting my little book shoppe. So I've been collecting and gathering and building my inventory. In fact, my house is overflowing with books - they seem to be piled in every available nook and cranny.

Over the next few weeks I will be busy piecing them together into attractive little book bundles and listing them in my shoppe. All proceeds will go directly to our adoption fund (you may not know this...but adopting is enough to put one in the poor house!).

So feel free to hop on over there and browse. 
And if you so feel inclined, buy a book or two!

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Remember, there will be new listings going up daily, so keep checking! 

(I think I'll get some paper crane garlands listed too if I can get my act together.) 


Wednesday, January 30, 2013

A Post About Hair

For years we have kept QE's hair short. Wash and wear seems the most practical for a child like her; one that has unruly curls, and a strong hate for having her hair combed. Never mind the fact that she looks plain chic with a short do.

My mom, however, has scolded me each and every time we have cut it. She loves her hair and wants to see it long. So I - being the obedient daughter that I am - have been resisting the urge to chop it. And, as expected, it is getting a bit out of control.

Here mom, this is for you!
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 Truth be told...I think my mom is onto something. 
This is a fashion statement if I ever saw one!!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Under the Weather

The Queen has fallen ill. 

Very, very ill. 

But - on a happy note - her curls are as amazing as ever. 

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Monday, January 28, 2013

A Single String

I glanced out the window and noticed a string hanging from the bare branch of our tree in the the backyard. A single string, waving in the cold winter air.

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Immediately, I recalled Elisabeth's birthday party; the lanterns hanging from the tree, the colors, the sunlight late into the evening. 

It had me craving the warmer months to come.

It's nice to know that winter doesn't last forever. 

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Friday, January 25, 2013

Pizza - Roman Style

Last week I was daydreaming about Rome. I recalled a small little restaurant around the corner from our hotel in Trastevere. I remembered that moment - that first bite into the most delicious pizza I had ever tasted.

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[My first meal in Rome. Oh, that crust! That melt-in-your-mouth crust!]

 And for the next few days I couldn't get that memory out of my head. I needed that pizza - I needed to recreate that pizza.

So I started researching and found a blogger, Marco Flavio, from my beloved Trastevere. He wrote this of Roman pizza:  

Roman pizza crust is thin and crunchy but never, ever hard to chew or like a cracker. When you bite into it it will have a little of the softness of bread, counterbalanced by a crisp bottom, and the whole thing should almost melt in your mouth.

"Yes, yes!" I thought. "That's the taste and texture I am looking for." 

So yesterday I decided to make it happen. I followed his recipe very carefully and created a little Italian magic in my very own kitchen. It was almost perfect. Heck, for a first try it was down right brilliant. Next time I will roll my crust even a slight bit thinner, but even so - it was spectacular.

Read Marco's blog and find the recipe for Roman style pizza here. You won't be disappointed.

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[Behold, my dough!]
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[Behold, my pizza!]

Thursday, January 24, 2013

The House of the Rising Sun

So...I'm going a little crazy with video's lately...
...but seriously, how could I not share this??

Alexandra, age 10.
(I am a tiny bit [huge bit] proud of her.]

I plan on spending the day snuggling QE. She's been home sick all week with a terrible cold - which has increased her drooling tenfold. You would not believe how much drool one five year old can produce; every time I put a bib on her it is soaked through in minutes!

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Everyone else in the house seems to be coming down with a cold too.
(minus me)
(knock on wood)

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

An Afternoon at My House

A guitarist, 
a gymnast, 
and a 

Oh...and check out this video of Lorelai last week at gymnastics:

Her first day on the vault. Not too shabby, eh? 

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Happy Tuesday 
from the forever babe and me!

Friday, January 18, 2013


 And when I'm not dealing with syringomyelia or restoring order to Lorelai's room
I'm doing this:

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Thursday, January 17, 2013

A Centennial Celebration

100 years ago today 
my grandfather, Claude Coats, was born.

January the 17th, 1913.

What a life he lived...what a legacy he left!

In this picture Grandpa is working on Lady and the Tramp...with the dog that was the model for Tramp!

Working on Cinderella with my absolute favorite artist - Mary Blair.

Attending the Song of the South premier in Atlanta, GA, 1946. Claude is third to the left.

 Grandpa Coats with Walt - working on a model of Pirates of the Caribbean.

In honor of his 100th birthday, I invite you to watch Claude Coats: A Centennial Celebration to learn more about his life and career with the Walt Disney Company:

 (My favorite part is when they call my mom 'Disney royalty'....that she is!)

Happy Birthday, Grandpa!!!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Just a Spoon Full of Sugar

What I do when I'm not dealing with things like syringomyelia...



Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Year of the Pinwheel

After a careful examination of Lorelai's craft table I came to one conclusion... 

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 ...pinwheels are all the rage! 

(Paper cranes are so last year.)

Monday, January 14, 2013

The Medical Monkey: Part II

the school bus... 


The action!


He just hangs around with her diastat pen on hand - or rather - in leg.


 Just as Queen Elisabeth was being lifted up onto the school bus she had a seizure. Not a long one...just a few seconds. But it gives you an idea of what a typical 'Elisabeth seizure' looks like:

(Obviously the bus aid couldn't tell from her point of view that Elisabeth was having a seizure!)

Read my original medical monkey post here. 

Buy your own medical monkey here.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Bright Eyed

This is what QE looks like when listening to Tchaikovsky with her Mama...


"That's some crazy good music," says the Queen.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

A Story About a Syrinx

Remember last August when Elisabeth was in Seattle Children's Hospital and everyone was clueless as to what was causing her pain? And the doctors had no ideas? And they threw in the towel?
And remember how I said over and over again that I thought we should do an MRI of the spine but they refused?
"We already know it will show abnormalities, so really it won't show us anything," they said.
Well...when I took Elisabeth to Salt Lake City in October I finally met with a surgeon who listened to me; a surgeon who thought logically; a surgeon who called the docs up here and said we indeed needed an MRI of the spine.
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And what that MRI showed was that Elisabeth has a syrinx which is a fluid filled cyst within the spinal cord. There are still a lot of questions regarding the syrinx: Is it the cause of Elisabeth's scoliosis? Or is the scoliosis the cause of the syrinx? Is it the cause of the pain?
Currently, the MRI results are being sent to Primary Children's in Salt Lake City so that they can review them and discuss an appropriate plan of attack with the surgeons here in Washington.
We are also going to be taking Elisabeth to see a surgeon about her scoliosis. We need to make a decision as to how to handle it. It is getting so severe that there is fear it might start to threaten vital organs. Of course, how we deal with the scoliosis will be determined in part by what we find out about the syrinx.
And once we figure all of that out, Elisabeth will be having surgery to place a VNS device (which is sort of a pacemaker for the brain) in her chest. Details on that soon!
There's a lot going on around here!
But busy is good, right?

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

The Man on the Penny Farthing Bike

My grandparents home was somewhat of an art gallery; filled with beautiful pieces that never failed to inspire. My favorite - by far - was a little statuette of a man on a penny farthing bike. It captivated me. It even became the inspiration for this very blog.
A few days before Christmas a package arrived on our doorstep from my uncle. As I lifted the flaps of the box I beheld that beloved little statuette. I couldn't believe it; I couldn't believe that I was looking at my own home.
I believe that a person should have but a handful of treasures. A few belongings that are prized above all others. And this man on the penny farthing bike has become just that to me: a treasure.
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Thank you for the gift, Uncle Alan!
I will treasure it always!

Monday, January 7, 2013

The Classics

I asked Alexandra to make me a list of her top 10 favorite television shows.

She eagerly grabbed a note pad out of the junk drawer and got to work.

Her list is as follows:

1. I Love Lucy
2. Diff'rent Strokes
3. The Brady Bunch
4. The Cosby Show
5. Leave it to Beaver
6. Gilligan's Island
7. The Munsters
8. The Donna Reed Show
9. Car 54, Where Are You?
10. The Adams Family
11. Make Room For Daddy
12. Good Times
13. The Patty Duke Show
14. My Three Sons
15. I Dream of Jeannie

(She got really excited about this task and made it her top 15 instead of 10.)

Well, if that list is any indication, I would say I am doing a fine job of parenting. 
Ha ha!


Friday, January 4, 2013

An Oceanic Kind of Day

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[This is what one looks like when they have to leave the beach.]

Farewell, Pacific Ocean! 
See you this summer!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

This Is How I Turned 33...


[I love 33.]

[In front of my Grandpa's storefront.]



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Now for the highlight of the day:
Elisabeth went on her first roller coaster!

That's right! We held her up to prove that she was indeed longer than 40 inches and off we went. She loved it!! This baby of mine is a total thrill seeker.

Here is video footage of her the second time we took her on. Watch to the end and look at the smile on her face!

Seeing that kind of joy on Elisabeth's face made my 33rd birthday absolutely perfect!
I can tell this is going to be a spectacular year. 

 Hooray for 33!!
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