Friday, November 15, 2013

5 Things Friday

Hooray it is Friday today!!!

I have to admit that the days are going by fairly quickly.  Between getting Henry up, to daycare, picked up, home, fed, dinner made, eat, bath and bed the day kind of FLIES by.  So I really am not surprised it is Friday already.

Here is this week's randomness.

1.  Somebody is getting really good at sitting up.

And it is changing his world.

Of course sometimes you just get tired of sitting up.

2.   So I started posting more regularly again and you know what... I lost 2 3 followers.  Apparently once I started writing again, they didn't like what I had to say.  And as any blogger would tell you, it shouldn't bother me but let's just say... I did notice.  Whatever... my friend Rikkie told me she appreciates the posts.  :)

3.  Somehow, Phil agreed that we could decorate for Christmas before Thanksgiving.  I used the logic of "they don't have Thanksgiving in other countries, so they are already decorating" along with "Thanksgiving is late this year".  However it happened, he has agreed.  In preparation, we will be doing a lot of cleaning this weekend.  And when I say cleaning, I mean lots of cleaning.  I started last night by cleaning the kitchen floor and our upstairs bathroom.  It is amazing and disgusting how much dog hair collects on those floors and how quickly it happens.

Of course, I am going to try to add in some coffee dates with my guys, maybe a night or two of not cooking, and some relaxing.

4.  After kind of a rough week (between headaches, running late, work issues) I decided I needed to start my Friday off with a Peppermint Mocha (soy of course).  Because as of right now, they are my happy place.

5.  Babies R Us is having a "Babies 1st Christmas" event all this month.  I think the general idea is you go on a given day, between certain hours and they give you a $10 gift card.  Henry's date and time is Saturday between 9 and 10 (it's based on birth month).  I've had it on my calendar because I'm cheap and not one to turn down a free gift card.

Since I seem to be making a habit out of 5 Things Friday, I might as well join this link-up.  Why the heck not, right?

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Diaper Change

This happened the other day during a diaper change.

He was super cute.

And really happy.

And kind of silly.

Honestly... I just can't handle the cuteness.

I don't know how I manage to get to work every day.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The night I cooked fancy

I like to think I am a decent cook.  I'm not like my friend, Karla, who can whip up delicious meals off the top of her head from scratch.  I need a recipe.  But if I have a recipe, I can usually follow it, no problem.

The other night, I got fancy.  There was a recipe in the local paper for a mushroom and caramelized onion tart with goat cheese.  After looking at the directions, I thought, "I can do that."  So I did.

It was DELICIOUS!!  And here's the recipe below.  My notes are in italics.

You are welcome.

And don't be fooled... at some point this week, we are having hot dog wraps and tater tots for dinner.  Just keeping in real.

Oregon wild mushroom tart with caramelized onion and goat cheese
{courtesy of the Statesman Journal}
Serves 4-6

Ingredients3 tablespoons olive oil
3 sweet yellow onions, sliced into very thin rings (make sure they are sweet or you will want to poke out your own eyes from the onion fumes)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter for tart plus 2 tablespoons for tart pan
1 pound golden chanterelles and matsutake mushrooms or any other fresh mushrooms, coarsely chopped (I used the pre-sliced white button mushrooms and just left them sliced)
1 teaspoon garlic seasoning
2 teaspoons dried thyme
½ cup white wine
2 cans (8 oz. each) Pillsbury refrigerated crescent dinner roll dough
2 tablespoons goat cheese, crumbled
1 egg for egg wash, beaten
Chopped chives for garnish

DirectionsPreheat oven to 375 degrees and butter a 10-inch tart pan.
Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet and add onions, stirring occasionally until they caramelize and begin to turn translucent-brown. This will take about 30 minutes. (It took me a LOT longer than 30 minutes)
Add 4 tablespoons butter and chopped mushrooms and stir occasionally until mushrooms soften. Add garlic seasoning and dried thyme and stir until mixed in, then add white wine. Stir occasionally until liquid reduces until it’s almost gone.
Open crescent roll cans and gently unroll dough. Drape the dough from each can over half of the tart pan. Where the two dough pieces meet in the center, gently press to seal the seam. Using kitchen scissors, trim excess dough, leaving about 1 to 2 inches draping from the edge of the circular tart pan. Add mushroom mixture and distribute evenly on top of the dough, then fold the outer dough edges into the tart pan, covering part of the stuffing.

Just to be totally honest... it's not my recipe.  It's from the newspaper.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Henry's 1st Blazer Game

Friday night, we took Henry to his first Portland Trailblazer Game.  He LOVED it!!  We kind of knew he would.  See, he is already quite the little sports fanatic.  Anytime Phil has Football on, he is glued to the screen.  He does the same thing with my dad and football.  He will sit and watch it for the longest time.

He finally fell asleep about 5 minutes into the 4th quarter.  Didn't really fuss.  Just closed his eyes and went to sleep.  And he was sound asleep too because he didn't wake up until we were putting him in the car seat and took off the ear muffs.

I'd say all in all it was a nice little family outing.

Oh... and the Blazers won.  :)

Monday, November 11, 2013


I've discovered something about myself.

Ever since Henry was born, I haven't had a lot of time for myself.  Between a baby, work, Phil and his dissertation, Phil and his dad... I don't have a lot of extra time.  Or any.  And any spare time I have, I try to sleep.  Or do laundry.  More than likely, SLEEP.

But I feel like I am needing something.  While I LOVE being a wife and mommy more than ANYTHING.  But it can't be all that I am.  And now that Henry is starting to have a slightly better sleep schedule and I feel like I am starting to get mommy-hood figured out, I think I have the time to do some more things.

I feel like I need something.  An outlet.  I have been doing a lot of thinking about what exactly that should be.  I want to create.  I want to learn.

My day job constantly requires me to learn.  The more I learn, the more I know there is to learn.  But I need more than that.

I used to have so many outlets.  I used to blog almost everyday.  I would take pictures, sewing, crochet, cook, exercise.  I miss it.  It's time to do a few of those things.  I can't do all of them as much as I did before.  And I am ok with that.  Henry's kisses are so much more fun than sewing.  But after he is sleeping, I need to do something.  For me.

I need it.  It's time.

I have a few ideas.  I have started a list.  Here are a few things from my list:

-  Do an online photography tutorial.  Brittany recommended this one.  I want to be able to take good pictures of my family without it costing an arm and a leg.

-  Learn Spanish.  I got the Level 1 Rosetta Stone for my birthday a couple of years ago.  I never went through it though.  You wanna know the reason?  I was embarrassed to have Phil hear me pronounce things incorrectly.  The guy has seen me through a couple of surgeries, through being extremely hypothyroid, larger than life pregnant (I almost weighed more than he did at one point), give birth, and postpartum.  But I still get self-conscious around him.  I don't get it.

-  Do a sewing project.  I have one in mind.  I don't want to share the details until I actually get it done though.

-  Run.  I know this isn't creating or learning, but I have had this HUGE desire lately to just RUN.  I know this would be EXTREMELY painful, since I haven't exercised in who knows how long.  I'm thinking I might start going to the gym on my lunch break.  I wouldn't go to run.  That would be gross.  But a little weight lifting would be a step in the right direction.

I know these things will take time.  Especially since life is REALLY up in the air right now.  A terminally ill parent, grad school, and a baby have to take top priority right now (not in that order).  But when I can, I think I will start working on my list.

Friday, November 8, 2013

5 Things Friday

Are you keeping track?  This makes my FOURTH post THIS WEEK.  That's like a post-Henry record.  When I was driving to pick up Phil last Sunday, Henry was sleeping peacefully in his carseat and I had something VERY relaxing playing over the car radio (*cough* Harry Potter *cough*), I was able to really relax.  And it got me thinking about some things.  One of which was that I wanted to start blogging more again.

So lucky you!!  4th post of the week.

Here are some random things to wrap up the week.

1.  Last Friday, my dad and I continued our tradition of going to the Dad's Weekend Oregon State Football game.  We have gone every year for the last 10 years (well the first 2 years, I was on Dance Team so we didn't technically go to the game together and then my senior year of college I was in England) so it is fun to continue the tradition.

It was a little different this year though since I had an extra duty I needed to perform a couple of times during the game.

Pumping.  You know... your usual Father-Daughter activity.

My dad is VERY understanding and not at all weirded out by it.  Even when I decided to go ahead and pump in the stands.

{my view during the pump session}

This might be the weirdest place I have pumped/breastfed.  But I gave myself a little pat on the back for not letting breastfeeding run my life.

2.  I found a new sewing project online that I am SO EXCITED to do.  I went to Jo-ann's Fabrics at lunch yesterday to buy my fabric.  When the ladies asked me what I was making, I showed them the picture and they were all so excited about it, they are thinking of using the project for one of their sewing classes.  Made me even more excited.  That excitement helped when I needed to cut 192 squares.

Since the time change has Henry falling asleep by 8:00 at the latest, I decided to getting my cutting done while he slept.

Cutting stuff out for a project is my least favorite part. But it is DONE and waiting for naps during the weekend so I can get sewing.

3.  While we watched the Oregon Ducks get beat against Standford (GO BEAVERS!), Henry decided he needed to wear Daddy's hat.

All the pictures are blurry because somebody wouldn't hold still, but I can't handle the cuteness.

It is rare that Phil doesn't have a hat on.  I think Henry might be a hat guy as well.

4.  The dogs have had a Freaky Friday body exchange or something.  Cotton used to be the naughty/annoying dog.  Now Taylor has taken his place.  I find myself turning to scold Taylor and the words, "NO COTTON!" come out.  For once, it isn't Cotton's fault.  Weird.

5.  Henry still comes with me to work one day a week.  This will be the case for at least a couple more months.  Not sure how long exactly.  It depends partially on when a spot opens up for the 4th day at his daycare.  For the time being, this is my view:

Can't say that I hate it.  :)

6.  Here's an extra one for you.  Someone found my blog this week with the search words of "knock the bitch up".  Awesome.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Skipping Thanksgiving

Things have been really hard around here.

We are into November now.  Phil is home (YAY!) but with being home comes a big dose of reality.  We don't know when his dad will pass away, although we think it will be sooner rather than later.  Phil's feeling stressed about his dissertation.  Can't say that I blame him.

The change in time and change in the weather has made it darker, colder, and gloomier around here.  It takes me back to a couple of years ago, when we were trying to get my thyroid nodules figured out.  The phone call at 4:55 to come to the doctor's office.  The LONGEST 5 minute drive with my dad, in the dark, while it rained.  And all that followed.  Even though things turned out alright, the fear still feels real and current.

So many hard things coming up and hard memories from the past, all at the same time.

It is making being thankful at Thanksgiving seem like an impossible challenge.

A combination of everything kind of makes me want to just skip Thanksgiving.  Can we start focusing on Christmas?  I want to decorate.  Christmas lights.  A Christmas tree.  Cider.  Presents.  Scented candles.

My baby's 1st Christmas.  I want to just bask in that.

But I think Phil might not go for it.  Doesn't mean I can't start preparing.  Part of the preparations includes STOCKINGS.  Henry needs a Christmas stocking.  A proper one, with his name.  I'm thinking something like this:

Even though he won't remember this Christmas at all, it is time to start the Christmas traditions.  And when the dark, cold nights start to make me remember scary times from the past or sad times yet to come, I will try to remember that this is Henry's 1st holiday season.  And I am grateful and excited for that.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


Because I am a shameless parent who thinks their child is a genius and is the cutest baby in the whole wide world (not at ALL bias), I entered Henry in the Gerber Baby Photo Contest.

You can vote for Henry HERE.  His entry ID is 255674.  Or you can look him up under his name (Henry) and the state that we live in (OR).  Or you can look him up under my name (Natalie) and the state was live in (OR).  You can vote once a day, every day until December 4th.  And i would encourage you to do so.  Because look at this face:

How could you not vote for that?

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

We survived

Phil came home on Sunday.  He was gone 10 days.

Henry and I survived.  So did the dogs.  Although we did have a couple of rough moments.  Like Saturday morning.  Henry woke up at 5:20 am.  I got him back to sleep and in bed by 5:40.  When I put him in his crib, he woke up and then I realized he needed his diaper (and jammies) changed.  So I changed them and by this point, he was AWAKE.  So I started rocking him to get him to go back asleep.  At 6:00, Phil's alarm starts doing off (cause he accidentally left it on when he left).  So I put Henry in his crib and went to turn off the alarm.  At this point, Henry is starting to put himself back to sleep so I got back into bed thinking I could get a little more sleep.

And that's when it happened.  I took a couple of sniffs.

Dog poop.

Cotton had pooped in his bed.

By the time I got everything cleaned up, I had to light candles in my room to get rid of the smell.  I couldn't fall back asleep with candles burning, so I folded laundry.  And never got to go back to sleep.

The next morning, Cotton threw-up.  Twice.  Because he couldn't get to one of his toys.

So like I said... we survived.  All four of us.  But I was extremely glad to have Phil home.  Apparently Cotton requires about as much attention as Henry.

Part of what happened while Phil was gone... Halloween.

In case every other blogger didn't let you know.

 My brother, sister-in-law, and nephews let Henry go trick or treating with them.  So that's what we did.

And we are SO GLAD Daddy is home.
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