Saturday, February 28, 2009

Teeth 1: 1-5

1 In the beginning Nicole and Fred cared for Charlotte's face and her mouth. 2 And her mouth was without form, and void; and gums was upon the face of a child. And the Spirit of the Tooth Fairy moved upon the face of this sweet child. 3 And the Tooth Fairy said, Let there be a tooth: and there was a tooth. 4 And Nicole and Fred saw the tooth, and it was good: and Charlotte divided the gums from the tooth. 5 And Nicole called the white a tooth, and the she called her mom as well. And the Mac and the Cheese from Whole Foods were the first food to grace the tooth.
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Thursday, February 26, 2009

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Plant Project Day 4

Here is our most recent picture of our Plant Project. I showed Isabella and she said, "I did that!" It was the cutest thing ever.
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Hide the Veg : Part II

Lately in our house we have been watching a BBC show called "You are what you eat" starring Dr. Gillian McKeith. This show teaches one person every episode how to eat well. Most of the people they show do not eat veggies at all. So I figured we could turn that around to use on our kids and get them to try new vegetables. Considering Isabella pretty much only likes peas, broccoli, and corn.
One episode Gillian gave a recipe for sweet potato chips (crisps as they say in London). Once I heard that I knew I need to try this on Isabella. For adults it is called a guilt free snack, for kids... it is called healthy.

Give it a try if you would like I think they were definitely worth it and a good alternative to regular potato crisps!

Beware of if you don't cook them long enough they are a little soft. "That is not good eats!" In the end Isabella tried a soft chip and would not try anymore. Charlotte loved them and so did Nicki and I.

Also, I cut these with a regular vegetable peeler. If you have a mandolin use it! I wish I had one it would have made this a lot easier.

Recipe I: "Oven Baked Sweet Potato Chips Recipe #77009 Guilt-free snack! These chips are made without any fat. For attractive circular chips, look for sweet potatoes that are round rather than long. I think these are even yummier than regular potato chips. 36 chips 1½ hours 10 min prep 1 large sweet potato, unpeeled,washed,and dried (about 9 ounces) salt & freshly ground black pepper Heat oven to 200°F with two racks. Line two baking pans with parchment paper, and set aside. Slice potato crosswise, as thin as possible. Arrange the slices on the prepared sheets, and keep them from touching as much as possible. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Cook for 50 minutes. Slices will dehydrate and shrink; turn chips over, and rotate baking sheets if needed for even cooking. Cook until slices are crisped and fluted around the edges and the centers are still orange, not brown, 30 to 40 more minutes. Transfer to cooling racks, and cool chips on baking sheets. (Chips will be soft when removed from oven and will crisp as they cool.) Store in an airtight container, at room temperature, up to 3 days."

Recipe II: "BAKED SWEET POTATO CHIPS:Heat oven to 350. Peel sweet potato (works with yams too) and slice thin, as if for a thick potato chip. Cover a cookie sheet or baking pan with foil, sprayed lightly with vegetable spray. Lay sweet potato chips on the foil, rubbing each one slightly in the veggie spray. Then lightly spray the tops with veggie spray, sprinkle with your favorite spice (I use garlic salt or something called crazy salt). Bake for 20 minutes, turn, sprinkle that side, and bake for another 10 minutes."
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Saturday, February 21, 2009

Sorry no Mama today.

Charlotte has been practicing her words lately. Most of the time she says Mama, so I wanted to catch that on video. But today Charlotte chose a different road to go down. Watch the video.

Sorry Mama!

Planting the seeds of new project

Today Isabella and I embarked on a new project. This project has a few different reasons why we are going through with it. First was the fact that I was tired of paying top dollar at my local mega mart when I needed a sprig of fresh basil or some other herb.

Second, I wanted to teach Isabella how to grow plants and what it takes to start one.

Third (this came to me while we were sowing the seeds) there is a lot of hand eye coordination involved, which is great for her development.

Tools -
Seeds: Dill, Basil, Parsley, Mint, Rosemary
Pot: Starter kit found at my local DYI store
Water: Big yellow nosed, blue fish watering can (given to us by one our dearest friends)
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Role out the Barrel...

... and we surely had a barrel of fun!
Isabella and I decided to be adventurous and make our own pasta from scratch. I haven't done this in a while but I decided it was about time to teach Isabella how to do it also. She had a great time.

You can see that having a pasta mill helps a lot but you don't have to have one. You can always role the thinned dough into a something that resembles a role of carpet... then slice into even pieces. You need a very sharp non-serrated knife for that. Now that I say that for Isabella she had a great time using our pasta mill. Which is authentic that we bought in a street market in Italy.

Next step... making our own pasta sauce. That will be another day.
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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Orchid Forest

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Happy Valentines Day!

Happy Valentines Day!
One great place to go on Valentines Day is where you got married. We took Isabella and Charlotte there and they had a great time. We walked through all of the plants and tried to teach Isabella about many of the plants that they have on exhibit.

Built in 1895, Franklin Park Conservatory is a botanical landmark two miles east of downtown Columbus. It is a premier horticultural and educational institution showcasing exotic plant collections, special exhibitions, and a signature collection of work by glass artist Dale Chihuly.
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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Jarome, AZ

One interesting stop on our way to Sedona was a small town called Jarome, AZ.
Back in 1929 the population of this town was over 15,000 and the town has a total area of 0.7 square miles at an elevation of 5,080 ft (1,548 m). Jerome became a notorious "wild west" town, a hotbed of prostitution, gambling, and vice. On 5 February 1903, the New York Sun proclaimed Jerome to be "the wickedest town in the West". Billions of dollars in copper were taken out of the mines here.

In the 2006 census the population was 343. So you could call this a ghost town.
Currently this is a very quaint town that has many shoppes and some really good food. If you asked me I would say try Grapes Restaurant and Bar.

One store we stopped in was "The House of Joy", If the girls were any older I would not have taken them into this store. We did find something that Isabella had to have. Yes these are monarch butterfly wings, isn't she cute?

Lastly, one more place we stopped on the way out of town was a small bakery. It was on a hill and down some steps, the entire bakery was under ground but it was some of the best tasting confections I have had. Giseles Cafe' & Bakery is a must see if you are in the area. Isbella loved it, Nicki loved it, and I am sure you would also!
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Opuntia? ... Yes that is a Prickly Pear

Prior to this trip to Arizona I did know that Paddle Cactus is sold at grocery stores and can be eaten, and I have eaten it in the past. Although one thing I didn't know is that the fruit that sprouts is sweet and the actual paddle (Nopales) is the savory part. From this "pear" you can make many different sweet treats. One that we found was ice cream! The taste was amazing! If would highly suggest if you ever come across prickly pear ice cream, jam, jelly, syrup, anything... try it.

If you find yourself in Sedona and you want some good homemade on site ice cream, I would suggest the Black Cow Cafe. Probably the freshest and best ice cream I have had in a while.

Isabella started talking to one of the creators of this ice cream. (If I had to guess I would say the owner) He gave her some directly from the spout of the machine. As he put it, "You would have to be in the machine to get any fresher." On a sad note, Isabella did not share.
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Taken outside of the The Chapel of the Holy Cross.

“Though Catholic in faith, as a work of art the Chapel has a universal appeal. Its doors will ever be open to one and all, regardless of creed, that God may come to life in the souls of all men and be a living reality.” - Marguerite Brunswig Staude

*This is not my picture. I found it on the internet!
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I s A b E l l A

This is the first time that Isabella wrote her name. All it took was telling her what letter to write and where to put it.
Here it is!! She then gave it to her Great Grandmother.
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