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Thursday, February 15, 2007

Equanimity restored...

Happy Valentine's Day!Happy Valentine's Day (now I'm feelin it): All was right with the world after about 3 pm yesterday (nap time). The folks arrived late in the afternoon bearing pity chocolate (which my dad ate while I wasn't looking!)(yes I'm still astounded), and TubaDad came home bearing flowers, a good bottle of red wine, cards, balloons, and (thank god) more chocolate. Hey lookie that - I really did cook a big dinner after that bad dayI pulled myself up by the bootstraps and cooked a big 'ole valentine's day dinner - country ribs, loaded baked potatoes, green beans, and sugar cookies (from scratch). Oh yeah, I was on fire (and had a little help from my mom). I was also firm in my resolve to be more patient and a better mom next time the day circles the drain like that. I'll let ya know how that one goes... TubaDad brought home flowers, wine, and chocolate. Ahhhhhhh.The girls loved all of the cards and balloons, and thought the stuffed fat cats we got them were just to die for. Ree got the gray one that looks like Xena and Ro got the orange one that looks like Mango. And they know exactly whose is whose. (They share so many things that we thought it would be nice to start having a few things that are not shared. Their bedtime lovies are different also and Ro will go get Ree's chewy and give it to her and Ree will steal Ro's bear and grin maniacally while raising her eyebrows at us.)

Nickname-a-Palooza: Thanks for all the great nickname suggestions - dang, you guys are clever! Ree seems kinda partial to Teeny Mareeny. She giggles when we say it and it's particularly fitting when she's about to dive off the tall bookcase and we can say in circus-like voices "And now, for your enjoyment, the Amazing Teeny Mareeny will FLY through the air!" Oh, and Mighty Ree seems pretty fitting too when she's puffing out her little chest and pushing something huge around the room or yelling like a rowdy sailor. Funny. We loved all the suggestions and will try them all out at various times to see what sticks. Sweetpea Ree, Ree Cherie, and all of them, just adorable. Thank you!

Virtual Baby Book: My mom recently asked if I was writing things in their baby books, like when the girls said a certain word or what foods they liked to eat. Uh. Yeah. Baby books. Gee, that would have been a good idea, but... Hey how about a baby blog? This blog should count for something, right? Ok, here are a few baby blog notes for the record:
  • Ree is cutting another tooth right now (bottom tooth just to the left of front).
  • The girls LOVE sign language and can pretty much learn a new sign each day (except that their mom just can't keep up and is really holding them back). So far they know signs for cracker, cheese, banana, apple, milk, water, (hm, I'm seeing a food trend here...), I'm pooping, more, butterfly (we made this one up), kitty cat, all done, and help me. There might be a few more, but these are the ones that come to mind first. This online signing dictionary is a great resource - they have tiny easy video demos of each sign.
  • The girls are wearing 18-month clothing (with all pants hemmed to be a whole bunch shorter) and size 5 shoes.
  • They love splish-splash (bath time) and prefer to stand in the bathtub (which used to give us fits until we adopted the new "zen bathtime parenting" attitude).
  • They babble all the dang time now, and maybe they can understand each other but we can't understand a thing they're saying. Ree is especially emphatic in her babbling and will shout certain "words" to emphasize them. Sometimes this is accompanied by crouching or vigorous arm flapping while pacing. It just kills me.
  • Their favorite word is still "Bob," which thrills my dad and little brother but gives Wela heartburn. They say Mama and Dada and know what the words mean. And they can say duck, ball, and frog (sort of). I think that's it. They know what almost every word we say means, though, and constantly astound us with their comprehension. We can say "Ro, can you go in the playroom and get the other sippy cup and give it Ree?" And she will! Yep. These girls are whip smart.

Cookies! Here's my Easy Sugar Cookies recipe, in case you're slavering for a few. No chilling required, so nothing will hold you back once you get that craving. 25 minutes from cupboard to mouth, makes 48 cookies:

INGREDIENTS: 2 and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1 cup butter softened, 1 and 1/2 cups white sugar, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS: 1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a small bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside. 2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in egg and vanilla. Gradually blend in the dry ingredients. Roll rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into balls, and place onto ungreased cookie sheets. (I squished each ball with a buttered drinking glass dipped in colored sugar at this point. Mmmm mmmm.) 3. Bake 8 mins (10 mins if you like 'em crispy. No longer than 8 if you like them chewy). Let stand on cookie sheet two minutes before removing to cool on wire racks.

Papparazzi: Here are a few more pictures from the week, including what is quite possibly Ree's best bedhead yet... (Click on the image below to see all of the pics and captions on one page, or click here for a non-captioned auto slideshow.)

* Please excuse the length of this post. Lordy. It includes all that stuff I wrote yesterday morning before the day took a turn...