Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Let the healing begin

The things I've been wanting to write about lately are that there have been a few positive changes in our (mine and Jody's) families recently.

First off, my dad has stopped drinking and has sought out help to work on his recovery from alcoholism. Alcoholism is something he's been struggling with for a long time and I'm so proud of him for taking what had to be a huge step for him. I hope and pray that it continues to go well. I love him and would love to see him improve his quality of life in this way. One day at a time.

And, secondly, Jody's mom has stopped smoking. Unfortunately, this good news has some not so good news to go with it. It seems that she's recently developed angina. After seeing a cardiologist this week, he's decided to do an arterialgram tomorrow to check for blockage and assess what needs to be done to correct it at that point (angioplasty, bypass surgery, etc.).
If you could please keep her in your thoughts (or prayers) tomorrow (Wednesday) morning, we would appreciate it. And Sharon, if you are reading this, please know that we will be thinking of you and hoping everything goes just perfectly.

Thank you all.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Life is good

My husband installed some shelves for me in our office this weekend so I can get my photography stuff organized, my little girl is currently napping peacefully, I have a pot of yummy vegetarian chili simmering on the stove, and the temperature here in CO reached 70 degrees today. Life is good. :)

I've got some things to write about in the near future but I'm waiting until I have some more time and more information before I do it.

In the meantime, I have to say we had a nice weekend around here. I got my shelves put up that I wanted (and didn't even have to beg for them). Jody, Ava and I went to a park on Sunday for a mock photoshoot so I could get in some more practice with my new lens. My photos weren't spectacular, but I am happy with some of them, and, as always seems to happen when I go out for a shoot, I learned a lot. :)
Here are a few (cuz I always gotta share):

We had friends over for dinner and played a bit of Balderdash last night. It was a lot of fun. I'd never played Balderdash before, though I've heard a lot about it. I wish we would've had more time to play, since it seems like we were just really getting into it when they had to leave (it was nearly 11 p.m.), so we'll have to try it again another time.

Tomorrow Ava and I are going to a welcoming party for a friend's new baby boy. :) I'm excited to meet the little guy. On Sunday I'll be doing a newborn photoshoot of him and their family and I'm really looking forward to that.

I'm slowly but surely getting my stuff together for this photography business. Jody keeps encouraging me to delve in and really get going on it, but I know my comfort level with my technical skills better than he does and I'm not to that point just yet. I hope to be able to get serious about it this spring and summer, but I'm realizing I'm going to need some outside help with Ava - perhaps a mommy's helper to spend some time playing with her while I work during the week.

That's about all for now. Time to go enjoy some of that chili. :)

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Tahini tofu stirfry with saifun bean threads - recipe

I've had these Saifun bean threads sitting in my pantry for months and months now. I bought them by accident, thinking they were rice noodles, and then wasn't sure what the heck to do with them. So when I decided to make some sort of tofu stirfy for dinner last night, I thought I'd give them a try instead of brown rice.
They look really weird after being boiled, as they are these clear noodles, looking almost like soapy bubbles.
(I found this site that has descriptions of various Asian noodles including bean threads.)

The meal turned out pretty well and was quite tasty, though see my note below.
Oh! I have to thank Jess of Get Sconed! for her tips on getting your tofu to cook just right. Basically you don't touch it until it's time to flip it. I cooked it over med-high heat and I think that helped a lot too. I was so proud that it finally looked good instead of like mush. ;)

Tahini tofu stirfry with saifun bean threads

Saifun bean threads
Olive oil
Sesame oil
Garlic powder
Cayenne powder
Red swiss chard
Sesame tahini

Cook tofu in olive oil, sesame oil, tamari, garlic powder and cayenne powder. Set aside.
Cook the chard in olive oil.
Combine the tofu and chard. Add about 1/2 cup tahini and more tamari, as well as some water to thin the sauce.
In the meantime, boil the Saifun bean threads for about 20 minutes. Drain and cook a bit longer with some vegetable oil and tamari.
Place some bean threads on a plate, cover with the tofu/chard/tahini sauce. Enjoy.

Note: This meal was a LOT heavier than I thought it would be, perhaps due to the amount of oil I used. I didn't think it was a lot, but if I make it again, it will be with less oil.
Also, sorry I didn't specify amounts much for this recipe. It really was an "eyeball it" kind of meal.

I had a lot of bean threads left over (since I made two packages - oops), so after dinner I gave a couple handfuls to Ava on her tray and she had a ball playing with them and eating some as well.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Two recipes - Polenta Lasagna and Carrot Casserole

Thanks to my friend Sonja for turning me onto polenta and sharing this recipe with me.

Polenta Lasagna

Tomato sauce
Polenta (I used the kind with sun-dried tomatoes and garlic)
Vegetables (optional - I used red Swiss chard and black olives)
Cheese (I used Monterrey Jack)

Put a thin layer of sauce in the bottom of your dish to prevent sticking. Spread a layer of polenta (you can soften it in the microwave first). Add a layer of sauce. Sprinkle some basil on the sauce. Add the vegetables (which should be cooked a bit first to prevent crunchy vegetables in the lasagna). Sprinkle shredded cheese on top.
Bake at 400 degrees for about 40 minutes or until bubbly and melty.

This was my first time cooking with polenta (which is corn meal mush). It was easy to use and quite tasty. Reminded me a bit of grits, but more flavorful, especially in the lasagna. I was also excited about the meal because it was entirely organic, except for the black olives. And Jody and Ava liked it as well. I love it when my meals are a hit. ;)
While I was at Vitamin Cottage today, I also bought some polenta with green chiles and cilantro in it and will prepare some sort of Mexican meal with that one. Mmmmm. :)


The next recipe I got online (somewhere??), but modified it a great deal, so I kind of consider it an Amy original. ;) Unfortunately, I don't have pics of it, but it was very tasty and enjoyed by all three of us. :)

Carrot Casserole

8 C sliced carrots
1 large onion, diced (Since I didn't have one at the time, I left it out)
Quorn "meat"balls (Looove the Quorn products in this house)
Veggie crumbles (I used Morningstar Farms)
A few shakes of garlic powder
1/2 jar tomato sauce
1 T butter
1/2 C heavy cream
1/2 t salt
1/2 t ground black pepper
1 1/2 C grated cheese (I used cheddar, but I think just about any would do)
1/2 C fine dry bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bring pot of water to a boil. Add carrots and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes. Drain and place in a 2 qt casserole dish. Cook "meat"balls and veggie crumbles in the microwave. Season with a bit of garlic powder. Cut the "meat"balls into smaller pieces. Stir in onion, butter, cream, salt, pepper, "meat"balls, veggie crumbles, tomato sauce and cheese. Mix well. Sprinkle bread crumbs over the top. Bake in preheated oven for 50 min.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Just too busy

I've been home for two days, but just haven't had a chance to do much blogging.

Yesterday was spent doing tons of laundry, cleaning up the house and getting caught up on various things. And last night was a ladies' night out for my AP group. A group of seven of us all got dinner at a local restaurant. The food was delicious, but they made a mistake on my order (Mediterranean wrap with sundried tomatoes, hummus, olives, spinach) and put chicken in it! And, what's even worse is I ate a few bites before I realized it. :( Ugh. I thought something tasted off on it, but I couldn't put my finger on it until I actually saw some of the chicken poking out of the wrap and was like WTF is that??! I felt like such a tool for eating it and not realizing it was chicken. Duh. I told the waitress about it since they charged me for adding chicken to it (and I didn't feel I should have to pay for something I didn't want) and she apologized profusely. Guess I need to inspect my food more closely when dining out.

The other thing that's been occupying my time is playing with my NEW 50mm LENS!! :) I'm so thrilled to have it and have been enjoying playing with it the past two days. I got some cute shots of Ava today. Here's the only one I've proofed so far.

The lens cost a pretty penny, but I'm paying for it using money I've made from my CafePress store. (Hooray for a little extra income.) It will be soooo useful to me in my portrait photography and is well worth the investment.

The lil girlie is napping now so I should go get some other stuff done. I have a new recipe to post - a casserole I made for Jody and Ava last night using carrots, Quorn "meat"balls, veggie crumbles, tomato sauce, cream, cheese and bread crumbs - that was delicious. (I had leftovers today.) I didn't write it all down though so I'll have to go from memory.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Some pics from the trip home

OK, I know I'm doing this totally backwards (working on pics from our drive home tonight first), but I'm left-handed and tend to do things a bit differently. I've also been known to read magazines backwards.

Honestly, I took a ton of pics on JUST our drive home tonight (Jody was driving - phew!) ;). I filled my memory card and even had to go back and delete some pics so I'd have more room to play. After reading a bit in a couple photography magazines (backwards, of course), I got inspired and decided to play around with exposure using the sunset and then with car headlights. My experimenting produced some neat results.

Here are some of us on the way home and then a couple of my "playing" pics. :) Click the pics to see them larger.

Ava - just waking up after a nap in the car:

Jody - looking so cool while driving:

The plains of Colorado and me - in the sideview mirror (Honestly, that picture is mostly of me - the view is not of anything in particular. I just thought it was cool to catch myself in the mirror.):

The sunset tonight in Colorado (purposely underexposed):

Car and traffic lights at night (long exposure):

Home again

Lots to post about (and some pics to share) in the next few days, but this is just a short one to let you know we made it home safely.
A good time was had by all, but it will be good to get back into our routine and we'll all be happy to sleep in our own bed again tonight. :)

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Just a quickie

Our visit continues to go well. :) We've decided to extend our stay by a day since Jody found out he gets Monday off of work anyway. So we'll drive over to Wichita tomorrow (Monday), visit with Jody's sister and family, then get back on the road for a few hours. We'll stop somewhere along the way for the night, then head the rest of the way home on Tuesday.
It will be much nicer to make the trip home in two days instead of one loooooooong day. :)
Hope everyone is staying warm. It's been so cold here with freezing rain and snow and we're missing snow and even colder temps back home in CO too. The roads, however, should be fine for the trip home.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Safe and sound in OKC

We arrived safely in Oklahoma last night (technically this morning) around 1 a.m. It was a loooong, loooooooong drive, just cuz it is over 700 miles, but the weather cooperated and Ava did well other than when she was really tired and needed to nap, but kept fighting sleep.

We spent the night in a hotel and have spent the day today at my in-laws' house. All of the cousins weren't able to make it, but we saw some of them here and hope to stop in Wichita on our way home to see the rest.

My mother-in-law was kind enough to indulge our new vegetarian lifestyle and found some tasty vegetarian meals to make for us. We had potato soup for lunch and veggie tacos, tostadas, beans and all the fixins for dinner. Mmmmm.

Tonight and for the rest of the time we are here, we're staying with my friend's parents here in OKC. (We aren't able to stay with my in-laws because of my cat allergies.) We had been planning on sucking up the cost of a hotel, but then my friend offered her parents' house to us and we took her up on it. It will be nice to save some $$ that way.

Ava's been having a good time so far. She played with her cousins, and has been enjoying me-maw and paw-paw's two dogs as well. Now she's running around playing with some balloons paw-paw gave her, while me-maw draws animals on her aquadoodle. Ava hasn't napped at all today (and hasn't eaten much either - too busy to sit still I think) so we're hoping she'll go to sleep early tonight. We could all use the extra sleep.

The freezing rain has started here so we're leaving my in-laws' soon for the night.

I'll likely stop in to post again at some point. Ya just can't keep me away from my blog. ;)

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Snow and headin' out

Since we are planning on driving to Oklahoma tomorrow to see the in-laws, of course we are getting dumped on with snow tonight. Unless it looks really bad in the morning, we still plan to make the trip. So please think "no more snow vibes" for us tonight and then "safe (and happy Ava) traveling vibes" tomorrow. :)

I may check in and blog while we're away, but we'll see how it goes.

Hope everyone has a nice week and I'll be back again on Monday. :)

Updated at 9:20 a.m. to add:
We had too much snow to make an early go of it this morning. So we're going to try to head out shortly now, assuming the roads have been cleared and we will miss rush-hour traffic in Denver.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Valentine Pizza and "chock-lit"

Inspired by Jess of "Get Sconed!" and her heart-shaped vegan shortbread Valentine's cookies, I decided to make a heart-shaped pizza for dinner. My pizza was not vegan, but it was vegetarian (and yummy). I tried out some veggie pepperoni for the first time and, while I didn't like eating it right out of the package, it was pretty good on the pizza. In addition to the veggie pepperoni, I also put on shredded carrots, red swiss chard, tomato sauce and monterrey jack cheese. It was quite a tasty dinner. :)

The heart-shaped dough:

With the veggie pepperoni:

Topped with all the fixins and ready to bake:

The finished pizza, hot out of the oven:

Recalling my disappointment last Valentine's day when all Jody got me was a card, this year he got me a card AND a box of Belgian chocolates. :) I was a happy girl. Chocolate (in any form) really is the key to my heart. I think it's the key to Ava's too. We let her have a few bites and soon after she said, "more chock-lit?"

After our feast of heart-shaped pizza and "chock-lit," Jody and I watched Saving Face tonight. IMDB description: "A Chinese-American lesbian and her traditionalist mother are reluctant to go public with secret loves that clash against cultural expectations." And one reviewer on Netflix said, "It's a story of the relationship between a mother and daughter, and their search for love in the face of family and societial expectations." I liked it. It was quite good and different from the norm.

Hope everyone had a nice Valentine's day. :)

Happy Valentine's Day

I recently had a 10x20 storyboard printed of this (without the words) to hang in our livingroom. I threw the words on it to add a little Valentine's flair. :)

Happy Valentine's Day, everybody!

We don't do much to celebrate V'day around here, so I'm not expecting any presents (even though I secretly want them). ;) We did get a package from my parents yesterday with some reese's peanut butter cups (mmmmm), as well as clothes, a book and stickers for Ava.

Hope you all have a nice day. :)

Monday, February 13, 2006

Hittin' the road and the "Cyborg"

We're heading out of town this week (leaving Thursday morning) for five days - driving down to Oklahoma to see my in-laws and all of Ava's cousins. :) It's been a looooong time since she's seen her cousins - uh, since Thanksgiving 2004! - so it will be lots of fun for her I'm sure, especially now that she can walk and run with the best of them.

We haven't attempted a driving trip this long (10 hours without stops) since that long ago (Thanksgiving '04) as well and I hope and pray this trip is easier than that one was. I am optimistic that it will be since a) Ava is facing forwards in her carseat now and b) we can read books and play games and be a lot more interactive with her than we could when she was only 5 months old.

Also, the last time we made that trip we ran into a HORRIBLE snow/ice storm on our way home which slowed us down considerably and made for some white-knuckle driving for Jody. Light snow is expected during our traveling days this time as well, but hopefully it will only be light snow and nothing more.

A friend of Jody's will be dog-sitting (yay!) so we don't have to pay an arm and a leg to board the critters.

In other news, we had a pretty nice weekend. I felt much better as the day progressed on Friday after my morning from hell and even made up a sesame tofu dish for Jody's birthday dinner, as well as made brownies. I didn't write down what I put into the sesame tofu, but if I recreate it again I will be sure and jot it down. It was quite tasty.

On Saturday, went to a pizza place for Jody's birthday meal out. We were going to pick up a cheesecake from Cheesecake Factory on the way home, but decided against it since I made brownies the day before. Will have to save the cheesecake for another day. Then we spent some time hanging out with our friends.

While we were at the pizza place, the manager brought out a garbage bag full of toys for Ava to pick one. She pulled out a plush Cyborg doll from Teen Titans whom she calls "man." He looks like this, only as a plush "doll." Jody thought that was pretty cool that she got something other than a dog or a bear and, while I thought it was weird at first, I have to agree. It's nice to have some diversity in her toys. I would never pick out a cyborg for her myself, but I'm glad she's got one now. He already seems to be one of Ava's favorites - rivaled only by "baby." :)

The rest of the weekend was spent working a fair amount on my new photography website for my business. I still have more to do (including bulk up my portfolio), but it's coming along really nicely, thanks largely to Jody's help. Hooray for tech savvy hubbies.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Tomato artichoke tempeh sauce - recipe

I had no idea what I was going to make for dinner last Thursday. I had some tempeh that I wanted to use, but wasn't sure how to prepare it. After looking through the cupboards, I decided to throw this sauce together, totally unsure about how it would turn out. It was actually quite tasty and I think I'll make it again sometime.
Here's roughly what I did.

Tomato artichoke tempeh sauce with fettucine

Saute 3 cloves minced garlic in 2T olive oil.
Stir in cut up tempeh and saute until golden brown.
Add in 1 14 oz. can of quartered artichoke hearts (chopped up).
Add in 1 28 oz. can or organic ground peeled tomatoes.
Add in 2 T dried basil.
Cook until heated through.
Meanwhile, prepare fettucine (or other pasta) according to package directions.
Top pasta with sauce and serve.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

It's my bloggin' anniversary :)

Wow! I almost overlooked it, but today is my 1 year blogging anniversary!

I started off my blog with a bit of controversy (I was excited about being part of a cause), but over time things mellowed out around here. Of course, I still speak my mind and share my views (and am thankful to have this outlet to do so), but I think people have learned that I do it not to attack others, but merely to share what I believe in.

I'm so glad I have stuck with my blog through thick and thin. I've made several great friends in the blogging world, (regained an old friend) and learned so much from many of you.

Happy 1 year to me! :) Glad to have you as part of my bloggin' life. :)

I also figured I'd take this time to invite any lurkers to come out and say hi. I know I have a number of "regulars" who (for one reason or another) have not felt comfy commenting yet. I hope you'll give a shout out eventually. It's nice to know who's "out here" in the blogosphere with me. :)

P.S. I'm feeling much better today so we are heading out to celebrate Jody's birthday. Thanks for all the get well and happy birthday (to Jody) wishes yesterday. :) Hopefully I'm done with this bug for good now.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Happy birthday, Jody - I'm sick AGAIN! :(

So much for a fun birthday for Jody today. I got hit by ANOTHER wave of this evil rotavirus (or whatever it is) bug early this morning. After clinging to the toilet as I hurled the remains of my dinner (why is it always tempeh??), I left him a message on his work voicemail (he was on his way into work via the bus) telling him I was really sick and might need him to come home.
Being the good guy that he is, he got the message and, soon after, caught another bus home, just missing my call saying that I was doing a bit better and that he could stay at work.
Anyway, at least now he doesn't have to work on his birthday. You might say I did him a favor. ;)
I'm really sick (no pun intended) of this damn virus though. This morning's bout was the worst yet, and even more unbearable because Ava woke up while I was being sick, wandered into the bathroom crying and calling "mommy" over and over again, and there was little I could do to comfort her since I was spewing my guts. I felt so bad for her. It's hard to be sick yourself when you have little ones who need you. I really hope she doesn't catch it again.
In talking with other people who seem to have gone through this same virus, I've learned it can recur several times before you are truly done with it. Blah. I hope this is the last of it for me.

Hope you all stay well and free of this nasty bug. Enjoy the weekend!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Good news about the gas co., Ava, etc.

I'm full of good news today. :)

First off, I got an email from someone at Xcel Energy to apologize that nobody filled me in on what was going on with my account (despite the fact that I was emailing back and forth with one of their "customer service" people who never bothered to bring this up). He said that while our averaged monthly bill has gone up, it's only gone up $10/month!! The big bill we just had was the reconciling at the end of the year (which I was aware of), but our next bill should only be for $10 more than what we were paying last year. This, of course, wasn't noted on our last bill so I had no idea! The only amount on there seemed to indicate that our monthly bill had gone up over $100. So what a relief that was!!
I guess we can stop scrimping on our heat quite as much now. Good thing too cuz I've been freezing and it's supposed to be a cold, snowy weekend around here.

In other news, Ava seems to be doing much better, don't ya think? ;) (I took these pics today as she tore up the livingroom - the kid went from one kind of the "runs" to another ;) - and then we played a little dress-up - for mommy's benefit.) The diarrhea finally stopped after what seemed like ages, though it was really only about four days. And today she got her appetite back. Yay!

And lastly, Jody's birthday is tomorrow. He has to work so we don't have big plans for the day, but I got him a few presents (or I'm just saying that so he'll think I did) and we will probably go out to eat on Saturday as well as pick up a cheesecake for dessert from The Cheesecake Factory. Yummy!

In food news, I made a couple new dishes this week - roasted carrot pasta and fettucine with a tomato, artichoke, tempeh sauce (yes, I'm giving tempeh another chance). The tomato/artichoke/tempeh thing I threw together tonight off the cuff and it actually was really good. I'll post the recipes and pics this weekend.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

An artsy weekend

I've been wanting to write about my weekend for a few days now, but between Ava and this possible rotavirus (the diarrhea continues) and me feeling like my stomach was in a vice yesterday (again!), I just haven't been motivated.

Anyway, I had a really cool weekend. A friend of mine who's pregnant (wait, aren't all of my friends pregnant right now?? 3 more just made the announcement in the past week! That brings the total to 8!) invited me to go with her to a nude photoshoot she was doing for a local artist. This artist does sculptures, paintings, body castings, digital manipulation and is getting into photography as well. She is working on a new project featuring pregnant women and needed some models. My friend always wanted to have some artsy photos done of herself while pregnant and figured this was the perfect chance if she could get over her nerves about it. The artist's plan is to take the pictures and make them into digitally manipulated collages, etc.

She told my friend that she could bring along someone if she liked and she chose me. She also said that since I'm a photographer myself, I was welcome to bring my camera and shoot alongside her!

I've seen nude and semi-nude maternity pictures that other photographers have done and I love the way they look, but I hadn't had the occasion (or guts) to shoot anyone sans clothes as of yet.

It was a really cool experience and I'm so grateful that I got to do it! I thought it might be awkward, and it was for about 5 seconds, but honestly I was so preoccupied with camera settings, lining shots up, etc., that I wasn't even paying attention to the fact that she didn't have clothes on. Since nude or semi-nude photography is something I want to offer to pregnant women in the future, this was a perfect way for me to get my feet wet and see if it is something I'd feel comfortable doing again. It is. :)

A pregnant woman's body is just so beautiful. I felt honored that my friend included me in that experience with her and I would feel grateful for the opportunity to capture the natural beauty of pregnancy for other women in the future.

I am pleased with many of the pictures I got from the session. It was also nice to work with no pressure since I was there just for the experience and not as a "professional" photographer. I'm excited to proof the pictures and show them to my friend. I think she will be happy with them. :)

Monday, February 06, 2006

The best hummus ever - Avocado hummus recipe

This delicious recipe came my way from Harmonia's blog.

I took some pictures of this after I made it last week, but they have disappeared on my computer for the moment. Grrr. I'll post one if I can round them up.

Avocado Hummus
(from Harmonia with my clarifications/amounts)

1 can of chickpeas
1 avocado
5 T tahini
3 T olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon (or more to taste)
3/4 C water
4 or 5 cloves of garlic
salt/pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients in blender or food processor. Blend until smooth.
Enjoy! :)

Cool word cloud t-shirt and another update

This site is so cool. It will generate a word cloud directly from your blog. Then you can customize it to make it exactly how you want. I love what it came up with for mine and I only made a couple minor changes. I'm tempted to buy a shirt. ;)


In Ava news - I'm starting to think she didn't have food poisoning at all (maybe I didn't either and I owe tempeh an apology??). But it really sounds like rotavirus (based on what I've read on askdrsears.com).
Rotavirus – one of the most common causes of diarrhea, especially during late fall and winter months. It causes very foul smelling, watery, green or brown diarrhea that can persist for weeks. Fever and vomiting are common at the onset of the illness.
The son of one of our friends had it and, though we weren't around them at all recently, it may just be going around. Her diarrhea is not letting up yet and she's eating very litte (though definitely keeping hydrated). I hope it doesn't last too much longer. I'm very tempted to go buy some disposable diapers to get us through this. I'm a die-hard cloth diaperer, but even I have my limits. ;)

Friday, February 03, 2006

Quick update on the lil miss

Poor Ava had a very rough night. She threw up somewhere in the range of 15 to 20 times from 7 p.m. last night until 5 a.m. this morning. I felt so bad for her. :( All I could do was hold her little body and try to comfort her as she heaved over and over again. :( She couldn't keep anything down, not even breastmilk.

She woke up around 5 a.m. and asked for some water. I knew she had to be really thirsty, but told her to take small sips because I didn't want to overwhelm her stomach. So she'd take a sip and hand me the cup, several times. Such a good little girl. And she kept it down. Yay!

She then had some "na-na" (breastmilk) and later more water and then more na-na throughout the day and hasn't thrown up again since. What a relief. :)

I'm not too worried about her not eating until she feels ready for it, so I'm not going to push food.

While she's not puking anymore, she's obviously really wiped out and has been sleeping on my lap most of the afternoon.

In the midst of the evening last night, before we went to bed, she and I were just laying on the bed looking at each other and I felt a rush of overwhelming love for her. I can't quite explain it but even though I knew we had a rough night ahead of us and I wouldn't be sleeping much at all, I just felt so much in love with her and so in love with being a mom. I truly can't imagine what my life would be like without her. And it's hard to remember a time when she wasn't around.

Thanks so much for all of your kind words and thinking of us. Hopefully she will be back to 100% (or close) by tomorrow.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

When tempeh goes bad, very bad

Along with the awesome hummus I made for dinner yesterday, I also made a tempeh, couscous, chard combination.

When I opened the package of tempeh, I thought the color looked a bit grey (but tempeh is normally pretty grayish, isn't it?). And since I don't have that much experience with tempeh and it didn't smell and didn't taste bad, I didn't give it a second thought.

I woke up around 3:30 a.m. with my stomach in what felt like very painful KNOTS. I went back and forth to the bathroom at least once an hour for the next five hours and eventually threw up. All the while my stomach was killing me.

I asked Jody to hang out at home for a bit when he got up for work because I didn't know how long I'd feel that way and I really needed some rest. He went to the store and got me some ginger ale which I could barely sip. Ugh. The stomach cramping was awful.

I finally started feeling better around 9 a.m. and slept another two hours.

The rest of the day I've been fine. A little pale, but pretty much back to normal stomach-wise.

I thought that Ava had avoided it since she hardly ate any of the tempeh yesterday, but instead was intent on devouring the hummus. ;)

Well, all was fine until about two hours ago, when she threw up all over the both of us. She's since thrown up about 4 more times - twice dousing our clothes. I have a
feeling this could be a long night.

Jody has so far escaped unscathed, though he has a much heartier constitution than I do. Lucky bastard. ;)

By the way, I checked out the tempeh, since we had leftovers in the fridge, and upon closer inspection, it appears there may have been mold starting to grow on it! *gag* Uh, no wonder I got sick. Anyway, the expiration date on the package was Feb. 5 so I wouldn't have even thought it possible that it would be bad. Guess I will be inspecting my tempeh a lot more closely (or avoiding it altogether) from now on.

Anyone else have problems with tempeh going bad?

Updated at 11:05 p.m. to add: I can't even count the number of times she's thrown up now. Ugh. The good thing (I guess) is that as soon as she's done puking she seems to be feeling absolutely fine again - running around like her crazy ol' self. So I keep thinking she's over it, but then she pukes again. *sigh* Hopefully this won't last all night. (Crossing my fingers)

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

A little "catching-update"

I'm bummed that I haven't had a chance to blog much this week, but I've been staying pretty busy and just haven't had the time.

I've been working on a newsletter in Publisher for our attachment parenting group. This one is bigger than the first one I did several months ago, so I'm having to reformat the layout a bit and it's been time-consuming. I'm hoping to finish the rough draft tonight or tomorrow.

We had a nice weekend. Jody took Ava out to the library and to run errands on Saturday so I could finish up proofing my friend's maternity pics in peace and quiet. She was very happy with how they turned out. (I'll post some of my favorites later this week.) Then on Sunday we all went for a drive into the mountains. I took my camera but it was quite cold and windy that day so we didn't get out of the car except to run into Subway for some lunch.

Our vegetarian eating is going well. Jody's even decided he can give up cow's milk and make the switch to soy milk like me and Ava. Though he is still reserving the right to eat meat outside of the house (and I totally respect that), he was proud to report to me that he got his lunch with tofu instead of chicken today. :)

I made some awesome hummus (a recipe I got from Harmonia) as part of our dinner tonight. OMG, it's the best hummus EVER! I told Jody I want to marry it. It's THAT good. :) I'll post the recipe here, plus a pic or two, soon. I love that so many of my blogging friends have good, tasty vegetarian recipes for me to choose from! That sure makes it easier. :)

I have little news to report on the outrageous gas increase. I tried contacting the greedy bastards Xcel Energy to see if there is anything we can do and they were LESS than helpful. First they gave me the wrong phone number to call. Then they told me that the department I was calling was "very knowledgable" about helping people in my situation, when in fact there was nothing they could do. It's so frustrating to me. In the meantime, we are replacing our furnace filter every month. ACE makes some 30 day filters that cost $1 each. We put covers over vents in three rooms that don't really need heating. And we've turned down our heat to 67. Though today while we were out I turned it down to 65 and left it that low until about 6 p.m. I'm going to do my best to remember to turn it down whenever we leave the house.

Ava and I went to a play date today with about 10 other AP mommies and kids. It went really well and Ava had fun playing with her friends. Speaking of Ava, she's taken to walking up and DOWN the stairs unassisted (if she can get away with it). Sure makes for several near heart attacks for mommy and daddy.

Better get back to the newsletter.

I'll leave you with one of my new favorite pics of Ava. :) I took it this week while working on focus.