I make granola bars, what of it?

I just read this post at Becoming Sarah, and it struck a chord with me.

I can relate to the hesitancy toward letting people see just how uptight I am about food. It all started with a college course on food and American culture. And not being able to unknow the things I began to learn. I’ve definitely not come as far as I would like to be (Ben & Jerry’s is a major weakness, for example), but I’d say I’m much more strict than the average Joe about what food I put in my body.

Let me tell you, it’s only gotten worse since Sadie was born. Let me tell you some other things:

It is exhausting being this uptight. Exhausting both physically and emotionally. I stay up late or work early in the morning doing crazy things like making homemade granola AND granola bars. I worry all the time about whether I’m doing enough. I made strawberry jam, but I can’t seem to get around to making other jams or trying to can other things (pickles, sauerkraut, beans, tomatoes). I wish I could get into the swing of making homemade bread (I can’t even stand how long the list of ingredients on our preferred bread’s package). I made yogurt for a while, but then my local source of milk vanished. And I never could get that routine enough, either.

It is a constant, uphill battle keeping crap out of Sadie’s hands and mouth. And not because she’s a toddler. Because she’s surrounded by it nearly every time we leave the house. I can’t keep her from it, and I know a lot of people (maybe most) would say this is where I’m WAY too uptight, but I wish I could. I wish we could afford to send her to a school where only healthy, real foods were offered. I wish I could change the minds of family members who are okay with kids having soda and candy and other non-foods regularly. But I can’t. As Sarah mentions in her post, food is SUCH a touchy subject. Food + kids is volatile.

I don’t really know where I’m going with this. Just venting, I guess. I know: I’m too hard on myself, too hard on others, too hard on the world. But I CAN’T just let it go. In a country where elementary students have high blood pressure and diabetes at alarming rates, what we don’t know CLEARLY IS hurting us. It’s hurting our children.



A belated Father’s Day ode to Trevor, my partner in:

Crime. Just kidding.
Getting shit done around the house.
Making the moneys.
Paying the bills on time.
Keeping Sadie alive.
Keeping Sadie happy.
Changing diapers.
Getting that kid to sleep.
Practicing giving Sadie a sibling (wink).
Watching movies and TV on the laptop in bed.
Eating a whole 12 inch pizza.
Getting through the hard days.
Making fun of ourselves and each other. And maybe other folks, sometimes.
Staying up past bedtime.

Trevor, you are the dish washer to my cooking. Happy Father’s Day, and here’s to many more to come.


Well, I finally (!) had my wisdom teeth pulled today, at the ripe old age of 30. While the oral surgeon kept telling me during the consultation that I should have had these out way earlier, I’m rather glad I waited until I was a full-fledged grown-up (admittedly, it would be a touch easier sans toddler).

My wisdom teeth weren’t impacted or anything, so it was a pretty basic tooth-pulling extravaganza. I think the real advantage of having waited is that I was totally able to handle having them out without going under general anesthesia, which is awesome, because “going under” kind of freaks me out. From start to finish, it took about 40 minutes, most of which was spent giving me shots to numb me up. Apparently they have to put adrenaline in the shots, which was kind of trippy. I started shaking a lot and felt weird, and my heart was racing. I thought I was freaking out, even though I wasn’t freaking out at all. Oh, and they let me pick out what music I wanted to listen to. Coldplay, of course. Perfect background music for such an event!

Trevor and Sadie brought me to my aunt and uncle’s house, where I am currently convalescing. My old bedroom is now the playroom for the grandkids, so I’m not having a full-on nostalgic moment, but it does feel nice to “come home” for a couple of nights. I can’t talk properly, of course, but I’m otherwise fully functional. Well, I’m also quite limited in what I can eat. Trevor’s going to keep Sadie at home, because I can’t nurse her while I’m on the hard stuff. I hope she takes it easy on him! The peanut butter malt he was sharing with her when they left me will probably help take the edge off.

I can feel the narcotics taking their hold, so I’d better sign off now. Here’s a picture of me all laid up. Don’t I look like Jacob Marley? Sadly, this isn’t the worst picture taken of me ever in my life…

I was worried Sadie would freak out seeing me like this when I came into the waiting room. Bah! She pointed at the ice pack and said, “I want one. This yours?”

I Watcha Birds


So here’s a little secret. Remember when I mentioned that we’ve let Sadie watch a bit more “TV” than we’d planned to at this point? Well, a certain member of the household (who shall remain unnamed to protect the guilty) has been exposing Sadie to the lawless ways of bootleg movie watching.

Namely, Rio. Sadie affectionately just calls it “Birds.” in an attempt to both right a wrong and test the waters a bit (and, honestly, I’ve been missing The Movies quite a bit myself since parenthood), we met up with Ashley and Margie to see Rio in the theater.

It went about as well as could be expected of a couple of toddlers. We made it through about two-thirds of the movie, and without any major scene. Were our cinematic neighbors thrilled we were there (and then gone, and then back, as the girls could not seem to decide)? Probably not. But it’s not like this was the opening show of Harry Potter or something.

Oh, and it turns out Rio is a 3D show. Sadie wouldn’t wear her glasses after being terrified by the Ice Age squirrel thingy short. Which means she watched almost a whole movie all blurry-eyed. Ah, well.

An update for May.

Wow. I feel like things have been going a mile-a-minute lately. Here are some ramblings to catch you up (and so I can at least sort of remember what life was like with a 2 year-old Sadie.

Verbal, verbal, verbal. That’s definitely where most of Sadie’s development has been lately. We’ve gone from simple two-word phrases to full-blown sentences and conversations we can actually follow. There are, of course, still many conversations that leave us scratching our heads. We talk A LOT about what is and is not Sadie’s. She really seems to like knowing what she can claim as her own and what is Mama’s or Daddy’s. I’m trying to work in the categories “Sadie’s to share” and “everybody’s.” Her manners are so cute and funny. She says “sorry” a lot, apologizing to us, to her toys, to herself. The other day she started saying, “Yes, Mama.” and “Yes, Daddy.” And, the very best of all, she’s starting to spontaneously say “I love you.” She’ll even say “I love her,” when talking about her toys, puzzle pieces (?) and BFF Margie.

Sadie continues to be very nurturing with her baby dolls and other toys. Thankfully, she’s getting a little better about petting the cats gently. Though, she’s becoming more and more interested in trying to carry the cats around. For their sake, I hope Sadie doesn’t decide the cats need diaper changes like all of her other toys. Here’s a good example of just how far this goes: Last Saturday, I decided we should make some graham crackers. I mixed up the dough and put Sadie in her Learning Tower so she could help roll out the dough and use her little cookie cutters. We did lots of stars, hearts and clovers. Then she found a tiny teddy bear cutter. I helped her cut one out, and she immediately cuddled it to her chest, saying “Awww, sweety bear.” Then the head fell off. We did this a few times, and then she moved on to just cuddling the cookie cutter. Later, I found her in her room asking the little bear if it needed a diaper change. And this morning she was cuddling a fridge magnet letter I. Of course, when she sets off into a bit of a tantrum, it’s not unusual for her to throw any and all toys on the ground with pretty serious force.

Bedtime and sleeping in general continue to be a struggle. She’d gone so long without fighting bedtime, it’s been hard getting back into the swing of helping her get to sleep. She’s still waking up one to three times a night, which is exhausting.

Yes, she is still nursing. I go back and forth on how I feel about this one. Some days, it’s no big deal. Other days, I wish I could just talk her out of it. She has, at least, become much better about handling boundaries I set about when, where, and for how long she can nurse. Nursing a toddler is nothing if not interesting, I can tell you that much. Tonight, when she was nursing before bed, she said, “I nursing. This my nuhnuh?”

Sadie’s been making friends with the kids in the neighborhood, which has been a lot of fun. They come over to play in our yard and on our porch, and Sadie generally enjoys it. Sharing toys on her turf is, expectedly, difficult. But she’ll get there.

Much to my chagrin, she’s watching more “TV” than I thought she would be at this age. Our TV is still in the closet, so she’s actually watching stuff on the little DVD player for the car and on the laptop. You do the best you can, I guess. Most of our book reading these days happens during meals, for some reason. She’s been on quite the streak with the Lorax lately. Sometimes it’s a great way to get her to focus on breakfast. Take a bite, and I’ll read the next page.

She’s got an interesting mix of bravery and fear, which I assume is pretty typical. She’ll put herself into many precarious physical situations without a second thought (using her little rocking chair to reach things that are up high). But then she goes on and on about the turkey she saw three weeks ago and how it scared her. We do our best to take these in stride.

Her much-loved teacher took a new job a couple of weeks ago, and this has been very hard for Sadie. She talks about her just about every day. Drop-off at daycare has become tearful again, which is so very sad for me.

Okay, enough about Sadie! What about the rest of us?

Trevor is doing well. His grandfather passed recently, and Trevor flew to be with his family in Maryland for the funeral services. His grandfather was a dear man who had lived a full life. I am glad to have known him even a little and that he had the chance to meet Sadie this past Christmas. It’s mountain bike race season again, so I’m hoping we can do a little camping with Sadie for a race or two.

I am Busy at work. Busy. And at home, too. I’ve been doing a lot of kitchen “projects,” trying out new recipes in the hopes of eliminating more and more processed foods from our regular diets. Kale chips were a total bust, but I’m going to try these cinnamon-honey roasted chickpeas a second time and see if I can get them a little crunchier. Tonight it’s frozen yogurt! I’ve got the seed planted in my head to do a Parenting from Scratch e-book, if I could ever get myself to set aside time to think/work on it. I’ve recently discovered Glee on Netflix. I know, right? Whatever. What I desperately want is a family vacation. But it doesn’t look like that’s in the cards for us this summer. Ugh. I am scheduled to finally (!) have my wisdom teeth removed in two weeks. Good riddance, I say.

The animals are mostly good. We lost a chicken a few weeks ago. As in, she literally vanished. I had a horrible nightmare about her last night. SCARY CHICKEN.

I took Sadie to Riverfest this weekend, which was a good mix of fun and crazy. Sadie really liked the drums. And I got to introduce her to my formerly annual favorite, Filipino barbeque shish-ka-bobs. Sadie also had a blast watching the various performances, especially the gymnastics. I’d have taken photos of that, but I was so busy trying to keep her off the stage.




It’s impossible not to laugh

When your toddler says her first swear word.

Sadie, Trevor and I were having lunch yesterday at the cafe at my office. Sadie wanted to take over peeling the orange, so I handed it to her. After a few moments, she accidentally dropped it on the ground. “Shit,” she said. “Shit. Shit. Shit.”

I looked at Trevor. “Did she just say ‘shit?'” “No, surely that was ‘sit.’ Sadie, sit?”


Well, you’ve gotta hand it to her, that was impeccable context.

Fortunately, swearing isn’t the only verbal development Sadie’s had in the past couple of months. Her vocabulary is exploding, her grasp of syntax is improving, and it seems like every day she’s got a new phrase.

Sadie do it.
I like it.
I don’t want it.
I need some.
I try it.
Come on, Mama.
Okay, guys, that’s enough. (Where on Earth did she get that one?)
Hear me?
I watch the pig.
A little bit more.
Bye, everybody. (That was today’s.)

We’ve also been up to other, more physical shenanigans. Like these:



Mighty Two

A happy birthday, indeed, was had by miss Sadie Diane. We are all wiped out (and still awake, cripes!), so here are just a few phone snapshots for now