Thursday, February 25, 2010

Thankful Thursday: Band-Aids

Today I would like to thank the makers of Band-Aids, whose nifty little box of wonders made my day just a wee bit easier. Thanks to them, I was able to successfully change Maribelle's diaper without incident all day. Which is a miracle, especially since the same can't be said for yesterday, when a certain 1-year-old (who shall remain nameless) was nothing but flailing arms, fingers, legs and torso during each and every diaper change and branded me with a lovely scratch ... on my eyeball. However, I was able to wrangle said 1-year-old and keep her entertained for about 30 to 60 seconds during each changing thanks to one simple unassuming box and 80 assorted adhesives. Sure I had to play the Band-Aid version of "52 Pick Up" after each diaper change, but I didn't mind -- at least I still have my eyeballs.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

National Pancake Day

Any holiday that celebrates food gets an A++ in my book, so we made sure to celebrate National Pancake Day responsibly this morning by scarfing down large quantities of homemade blueberry pancakes and syrup. What? You didn't know it was National Pancake Day today!?! Yeah, neither did we, until Jeremy came across something on the Internet last night about IHOP giving away free short stacks of 'cakes today in celebration of the holiday. As tempting as that sounded, we decided to mark the occasion in our pajamas in our own kitchen. I flipping (!) love making pancakes from scratch, and Maribelle and Jeremy love eating them just as much. Here's Maribelle giving her trademark seal-of-approval "nom-nom" to this morning's batch. It's kind of like her own version of giving a thumbs up or a thumbs down. If you hear this sound, you know she's in gastro-heaven:

So in honor of National Pancake Day, I'm sharing the recipe for one of Maribelle's favorite varieties of pancakes, found here. Try them and freeze them, you won't regret it!

Light & Fluffy Pumpkin Pancakes
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 pinch clove
1 1/4 cup low-fat milk
1/3 cup canned pumpkin puree
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 egg
Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, spices and salt in a bowl. In a separate bowl whisk together milk, pumpkin, melted butter, and egg. Fold mixture into dry ingredients. Spray or grease a skillet and heat over medium heat: pour in 1/4 cup batter for each pancake. Cook pancakes about 3 minutes per side. This recipe makes six 6-inch pancakes.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Cool tricks, cool tricks!

These videos are especially for Uncle Joshua and Aunt Misty, who requested more footage of our crazy little girl and her crazy little personality. With every new silly thing she does, she becomes more and more like Jeremy, who has a pretty unforgettable personality himself (i.e. he can be loud, hilarious, quirky and amazingly charming all at the same time). So here you go ... some videos of her latest tricks, or at least the ones we are able to catch on film.

This first clip is of Maribelle singing, which she does very loud and proud and always in the same key.

Here's Maribelle doing "sleepy baby," telling us how old she is and doing what looks like levitating but is actually one of her first attempts to stand all by herself.

These next few clips were taken just yesterday and capture her recent explosion of gross motor skills. Our typically very cautious and wary-of-doing-anything-out-of-her-comfort-zone baby is suddenly interested in standing by herself, crawling up steps and even taking a few unassisted steps of her own. Just in the past week, she's started crawling (yes! I caught our non-crawling baby CRAWLING! But unfortunately not on video), pulling up in her crib, and transitioning from her tummy to standing. Needless to say I'm extremely relieved that her gross motor skills are finally catching up, and I'm even more convinced that this little girl is insistent on instilling in me the patience that I just don't have for these sorts of things.

Taking a few unassisted steps:

Crawling up the step in our family room:

Standing by herself and just plain being silly:

Monday, February 15, 2010

Be My Valentine

Normally I could care less about Valentine's Day. In the 12 years that Jeremy and I have been together, we've never done much to mark the occasion. Some years we would give each other homemade cards (my favorite!), and in other years I would cook a fancy breakfast. But there's something about the craziness of life that comes with caring for another little human that makes holidays like Valentine's Day seem so much more worth noting. So we celebrated this year, and I can't tell you how much I was looking forward to it. Like really looking forward to it. Jeremy and I have been so busy putting all our love and attention into our little babe, that, well, we've been kind of passing like ships in the night (totally cliche, but honestly, the truth). So Valentine's Day gave us an excuse to get back on track and go on a true, bonafide date -- one of the few we've been on since Maribelle was born. Thanks to my mom and dad we were actually able to go on TWO date nights, back to back. We went to see a movie on Saturday (can't tell you enough how awesome "Avatar" is in 3D ... run right now to your nearest theater and see it) and out to dinner at a French restaurant on Sunday. We bought Belle some special little gifts (blocks, socks, hair bows and coloring books), and Jeremy received a new stash of plaid shirts and a homemade Valentine from moi. I, however, was spoiled rotten by Jeremy: he surprised me with flowers at work on Friday and an entirely new head-to-toe outfit (jewelry included!) picked out by the man himself, which I wore to dinner on Sunday. It was such a great weekend, being surrounded by all my favorite valentines and spreading the love in so many different ways. 

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Little Dunkaroo

The other day I taught Maribelle an essential life skill: how to dunk cookies in a glass of milk. I figured that 1 year old is as good a time as any for her to experience the wonderful deliciousness that is soggy graham crackers drenched in cold creamy milk. While I prefer to dip my cookies to the level where they might be considered  "slightly soft with a little bit of crunch," Belle prefers to proceed directly to the level of "so soggy it's almost complete mush in my hands." There was no throwing of the milk on the floor and plenty of repeated whines/moans/pointings for "more, more, more!" so I would say she has completely embraced cookies and milk as one of life's simple pleasures. However when she started giving her entire fist a bath in the glass of milk, we quickly brought this life experience to an end .... until next time.


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Baubles and Boredom


You know things are bad when A) I let Maribelle play with my jewelry (only the drawer of cheapo fun jewelry. The sparkly pretties were all out of reach, because this little girl has a thing for bling), and 2) I make a chocolate cake in a mug ... in the microwave (and I do NOT recommend doing that, unless you want a stomach ache). Yep, Mama's getting some serious cabin fever, as we were dealt ANOTHER 16-20 inches today (really, whose counting at this point?). This year is going down as Maryland's snowiest winter ever, and work has been canceled the past four days. I've been trying to keep busy, and Lord knows I have a million things to do at home, but for some reason I hit a wall today and was so bored that I couldn't even function. And I think Miss Maribelle was feeling the same way. So we both just kinda moped while a full-on blizzard swirled around us, right outside our windows. I'm determined to get her out of the house tomorrow, even if its for another rumpus in the snow (or on the sidewalks ... the snow is scary deep, so no rumpusing will occur on top of the towering mounds).  And I'll be keeping an eye out for these things, which are popping up EVERYWHERE as the snow continues to melt and freeze ...

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Surveying the Snow


We were housebound again today, and based on the fact that our street has yet to be plowed, it doesn't look like we're going anywhere soon. However Jeremy made it home safe and sound, our supply of milk has been replenished, we got to spend some time outside as a family enjoying the snow, and work is canceled for tomorrow. I'm officially starting to enjoy this snowed-in thing.  

Saturday, February 6, 2010

SnOMG 2010

It's a record breaker! This little old blizzard will go down in the record books as Maryland's biggest snow ever, and the city that we live in recorded the highest totals in the area. As of 8 a.m. this morning we already had 30 inches, and it snowed the entire day, so we totaled well over 30 inches by far (the report is that our city got 38 inches!). I kid you not, we even had thunder snow last night. Yes, thunder snow! There were huge flashes of lightning followed by loud claps of thunder, all while it was snowing. It was a true blizzard, folks. I was so excited I could barely sleep all night almost as if it was Christmas Eve!

Here's what we awoke to:

We couldn't even open our front door!

So I decided to take photos out our front windows.

 A view of our front door and porch ... totally snowed in.

Yes, those are cars under all that snow ...

 and houses, too!

 These are the crazies who are in complete denial about the fact that we're not going anywhere for days.
If we have work on Monday, I'm totally sending this to my boss as evidence as to why I can't go.

Our 30-inch tall Maribelle vs. SnOMG 2010

And here's how I've been keeping myself busy the past few days .....


I made a felt hairclip for the Little Miss that was so, so easy to make and looks really cute on her little noggin. The felt arrived just in time on Friday, and it took me less than an hour to whip up. Since her hair is still a bit on the fine side, I attached it to a hairband, and voila! Instant cuteness (as if she needs any help).


And although I'm not typically a wreath person, I made a Valentine's Day wreath. Since most of our decor isn't very "romantic," I thought I'd make something that is a little more on the softer side in celebration of Vday. And I think it came out rather cute.

Last but not least, I have carrot spice muffins baking in the oven, in preparation for Jeremy's return home tomorrow (fingers crossed he can GET home). Now if only housework was as fun as making hair clips and baking muffins ... 

Friday, February 5, 2010

Major Snow Event

We did a lot of this today in anticipation of the 20-30 inches of snow that's supposed to blanket the DC/Maryland area these next 24 hours ...

It finally started snowing late this afternoon, and we're supposed to have 15 to 24 inches on the ground by tomorrow morning. We're totally prepared to spend the next few days indoors, and I just hope this little one doesn't go stir crazy (at least before I do). Jeremy is stuck working what people are calling Snowpocalypse, or my favorite -- SnOMG2010, so he'll be deep in it (literally) while we girls and the poopers hold down the fort. I've got some baking and crafting planned, so we'll see how Miss Maribelle takes to those forms of entertainment. Today's activity of scribbling with crayons was a major fail since all she wanted to do was shove them in her mouth (and boldly so! She stared me straight in the eye every single time she put one in her mouth. It's amazing, she's already testing me!), so for the time being, we're going to stick with foam hearts and flowers. That should be harmless, right?

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Babe in Toyland