Monday, August 29, 2011

'Round Here

I've been a little busy lately.

You see, I've discovered the Harry Potter series. And I've loved every second of it. I'm not sure why I've never read the books before now...when the books and movies came out, my siblings were pretty young and my parents made the "no Harry Potter" decision that many families made. And that was fine with me, I don't remember ever pining to see the movies or read the books. As I got older, I guess I forgot about Harry. When one of the movies would come out, there would be a big uproar, people would dress up and show up at the theater in robes, wands in hand....and I still didn't catch on.

Right after we got married, one of the books was released (don't remember which one) and I happened to go to Wal-Mart the night it was released. I was standing next to a huge display of a life-size Harry and a gargantuan pile of HP books, thumbing through a different book, when a man ran up to the display, frantically turned to the last page of the new book, looked at me and screamed, "HE'S NOT DEAD! HE'S NOT DEAD! I KNEW IT!!" Then he ran off.

That was about the extent of my experience with Harry Potter. One day a month or so ago, I came across this blog entry by Andrew Peterson. It was so poignant, so beautifully written, that I knew I had to get my hands on those books. My brother-in-law was gracious enough to let me borrow his collection, and before the end of the first chapter of the first book, I was hooked. I don't feel that I can say anything more than Andrew Peterson said about the books except for, "Yes!" Read the article. Read the books. I loved them.

So, on that note, a few weeks ago, I found myself alone on a Friday night with nothing to do except make a tomato basil pizza and watch the first Harry Potter movie.

Ever had tomato basil pizza? It's one of my favorites but has been deemed "not manly enough" by Scott, so it's one that I have eat alone. You need a pizza crust drizzled with olive oil and lightly sprinkled with garlic salt.

Sliced plum or roma tomatoes...or whatever kind you happened to have on hand.

Thinly sliced fresh basil leaves.

Layer it with good mozzarella...not the cheap stuff! For really good pizza, you need the mozzarella that comes from the deli or the specialty cases with the fancy cheeses in the front of the grocery store.

Bake it in a very hot oven...475 or 500 degrees until cheese is melted and bubbly. So good. Even better when enjoyed with a good movie.

Scott's been watching the movies with me and we've loved them. We're anxiously awaiting #6 from Netflix!

Happy Wednesday!

Friday, August 5, 2011

6 Months and counting...

It seems that Little Lady is adding to her list of accomplishments everyday. She's sitting up on her own, almost crawling, and feeding herself solid foods with little help from Scott and I.

We're doing something called "baby-led weaning" and it's working fabulously. Essentially, it's a method of introducing solid foods to baby in very practical way: allowing the baby to learn to feed themselves from the very beginning. I read something online about it, read a book on the subject, and jumped in the day LL turned 6 months. It's been amazing to see her learn about texture and taste and to watch her improve her simple motor skills with every meal. We're big fans of this method.

We did the whole "Baby Wise" thing from the beginning...and it pays off! She's sleeping 12 hours at night and taking 2 naps a day. It's glorious. I know that she's going to go to sleep at 8:00 pm and that I won't hear from her until 8:00 am the next morning.

Occasionally, she will wake up around 7:30 am but she's content to lay in her crib and talk to herself until I am ready to get her. We usually just lay her in her crib when it's time to go to sleep and she's almost always asleep by the time we get downstairs and turn the monitor on.

Someone asked me this weekend, "So, you put her down for her nap even if she doesn't want to go to sleep?" The answer to that is...YES! If she fusses, it's rarely more than a minute or two and soon she's fast asleep. There's beauty in the routine...for her, for me, for Scott...for the whole family!

She's a very happy baby. She smiles at strangers at restaurants and in public. She seems to think the whole world is on parade for her enjoyment. We went to Wal-Mart this morning and she was thrilled to sit in the cart, look around, and smile at whoever got within eye-shot of our buggy.

It's amazing to see her little personality develop and it seems that everyday she's changing and growing. This age is so fun but it's been a little bittersweet in a goes so fast.

She absolutely adores Daddy...the moment she hears his voice she lights up. It's precious.

She's not quite crawling but she's close. She can get on her hands and knees, and put her bottom in the air, but the only direction she can go is backward.

She's been growing more red hair. I would love to get a bow in her hair by Christmas, but I'm not sure it's going to happen. Maybe next Christmas?

Happy Tuesday!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A Summer Recap

For all intents and purposes, summer is over for us. In our area, the kids have gone back to school and my 3 hours of work with the after school program have switched from morning to afternoon. While I love my long afternoons in the summer, I am also really enjoying my long mornings at home with Little Lady.

So here is photo recap of our summer. We went on vacation to Hilton Head Island, went to the lake, visited with great-grandparents, went Birmingham a few times, and spent a fun weekend in Atlanta with my parents. Enjoy!

photos are in no particular order :)