26 October 2010


My camera, which I've had for barely more than a year, appears to be dying. The view finder isn't working so I can only take pictures by looking at the screen on the back (I hate doing that), sometimes the zoom stops working, and other times the camera will just randomly change settings on me for no reason. Sometimes it won't take a picture. Boo.

But on a happier note, we had a birthday in our house this week.

To help her dad celebrate, Daphne decked herself out in 49ers gear. She looked so lovely, and ridiculously grown up.

Now Daphne thinks it is great fun to light candles, sing, and blow them out. Good thing she has a birthday coming very, very soon.

22 October 2010

Fall Treats

*Warning: Do not read this post of you are hungry. If you are not hungry, I'm sorry, but you will be soon.

Part of what makes the fall season so fun is the harvesting, canning, preserving and baking. These activities make me feel warm and cozy, which are good things to feel when the weather turns chilly.

Daphne loves to help me cook, making me excited for the day when she can wear her little apron and help pour and mix. For now she gets bowls of rice on the floor, which keeps her happy and leaves little rice granules spread all over our house. (Just in case you come over and are curious as to why there is rice hiding in the bathroom, hallway, dining room, etc.)

We've tried several new baking recipes this year, which I am sharing with you so to spread the warmth and coziness as well as I can via the internet.

My oven is baking these Cookies for Autumn right now as we speak. The house currently smells amazing.

I made Grandma Florence's Ginger Cookies last night. When I saw this recipe I imagined in my head what they must taste like, and sure enough, I was right on. They are amazing and practically good for you if you see the ingredients. Whole wheat pastry flour. No butter. Raw sugar. And very easy to make.

Hungry yet?

I made Pumpkin Balls inspired by a recipe from the U-Create blog. I mixed 1 cup of peanut butter, 1/4 cup softened butter, 1 cup of powdered sugar and 2 cups of Rice Krispies together, formed the mixture into balls and dipped them in orange tinted white chocolate. I used broken pretzel bits as the stems.

As evidenced by the fact that they looked like they were made by a 3rd grader, I had a bit of a challenge keeping them stuck together once they touched the chocolate. These Pumpkin Balls receive very high marks for taste, slightly lower marks for ease of making. I'll probably try again next year, and mix the P.B./butter/sugar/R.K. part with an electric mixer instead of hand mixing. That might make the ingredients stick together better.

Fresh picked apples are plentiful and yummy right now, so if you need to take a perfectly healthy apple snack and turn it into something not so healthy...use an electric mixer to blend 8oz of cream cheese, 1/2 cup of sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Stir in half a bag of Heath bits, and you have a perfect and easy apple dip. Your taste buds will thank you, your waist line will cry. But I learned at the Portland Nursery's Apple Tasting Festival that eating an apple cleans your teeth better than brushing your teeth does, so I say that's a green light to snack away.

Of all these treats, Daph has only sampled the Pumpkin Balls. She wasn't impressed, but for obvious reasons, we don't really rely on her as a culinary expert.

Happy fall baking!

20 October 2010

The Order of Importance

The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow

For children grow up, as I've learned to my sorrow.

So quiet down cobwebs.
Dust go to sleep.

I'm rocking my baby, and babies don't keep.
~Ruth Hulbert Hamilton

15 October 2010

This Game Has Yet to Get Old

I love, love LOVE watching Daphne walk all over our house. She's getting really good, and usually walks if she wants to get somewhere. I've been saying that watching her learn to talk has been my favorite thing, but walking is definitely a close second. Or maybe even tied for first. I'm not sure.

12 October 2010

In Her Dreams

At bedtime, Daphne wanted to read the book I'm reading:

Apparently she is no longer content with our family of three and would like 17 siblings, just like those Duggar children.

I think keeping track of one at the pumpkin patch is hard enough.

09 October 2010

Life is Nice When You're Happy

I don't know what has happened around our house lately, but Daphne has been in a good mood for like a week solid. Seriously, so strange. No temper tantrums. She and I went shopping the other day and we went to two stores where we were able to get everything on our list, no problem. She was miraculously happy the whole time! She has been a joy to take care of.

It helps that I recently read the most wonderful parenting book of all time, so it's quite possible that I am just more tolerant. I rented the book from the library, although I will probably just have to buy it because it was so good. It's called Don't Make Me Count to Three: A Mom's Look at Heart-Oriented Discipline by Ginger Plowman. Basically, the author encourages reaching into your child's heart with scripture to teach why a certain sin is wrong, and not just focusing on disciplining the outcome of a sin (which you still have to do, of course). For instance, if Daphne is not holding still while I change her diaper, I don't just say "Daphne, I told you to stop moving, so stop moving." I say, "Daphne, God wants you to honor your mama and daddy, so you need to honor me by obeying what I say and stop moving while I change you." Yes, it's a lot of words and seems a little crazy to say to one so small, but I know there is such power in using scripture that I feel God helps Daphne understand. I believe her little mind, which was designed to love God, gets that. Another line used a lot around our house now is "Daphne, God says we need to have self-control, so you need to show self-control by waiting for (insert desire here)" Her whining and fussing have been cut down so much by teaching her about self control, not just asking her to stop fussing. You know? I highly recommend this book. I give it a solid A++++.

I think Daphne is also happy that we have so many fun activities in our schedule this fall. She likes being social and likes being busy. Between BSF and goat milking and playdates and usual life, she seems to be very happy to go with the busy flow.

Daphne's doing great walking all over our house. I personally like that she announces where she's going as she walks. I'll be in the kitchen and will hear her in the living room say "walk to chair!" so I will peak in, where sure enough, she's walking to the chair. Then she says "walk to sofa!" and off she goes to the sofa. I'm thrilled that she has the strong potential to make a great tour guide someday.

And of course, it's fall, the most wonderful time of the year, and Daphne has her very own pumpkin patch right in our front yard. Who wouldn't be happy about that?

04 October 2010

Signs of the Season

Our fall decorations are up. Daphne has worn two different pumpkin shirts as well as pumpkin pajamas. She has a collection of new fall colored hair clips. I have fallen in love with Starbucks Pumpkin Spice lattes. We went to a pumpkin patch. We went to the MCC Sale. We all have colds. Our front porch is festively beautiful. The chickens are molting. My mums are blooming. I was freezing cold this morning while milking the goats.

I think it is officially autumn.