Monthly Archives: May 2016

Four Months!


We have a four month-old baby. How crazy is that?  To celebrate, he got into a vicious skirmish with Captain Calamari. Between that and the (throat/arm) pinching, he needs to learn “soft hands.”

  • Last Thursday, Critter slept for 8.5 hours and it was HEAVENLY because it meant I got seven hours. On Friday, I felt like I could conquer the WORLD. Also, I told EVERYONE about it. Because I had to. Of course it has not happened again. 
  • I bought an auxiliary toy basket to tuck under our living room coffee table because the clutter in our house was just killing me. I still cannot do anything about the giant toys (bouncer, playmat, exersaucer) but this is better. 
  • I am in the process of acquiring a variety of teething toys for Critter because at some point between now and forever we’ll need them.  Honestly I wish I had sorted out a set of teething beads earlier because more often than not, he’ll grab them instead of my hair. 
  • To solve our cabin blow-out problem we sized up in diapers AND wrapped the diaper in a Thirsties cover. Critter still outwitted us.  On the other hand, we also learned our baby who hates to be wet cannot tell that he is wet in the Pampers overnight diapers. So I think we’re going to start using those for outings where we want him to be comfortable for longer than an hour. 
  • Over the weekend we took Critter out in the baby carrier for the first time. I did successfully wear him in the Boba wrap once (he always felt sort-of too big for it) but he REALLY despised the Gemini until now. I’m guessing a good chunk of why the carrier is now entertaining to him is because he can be front-facing. 
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Memorial Day Weekend 2016


Since taking Critter Up North for the fishing opener did not result in outright disaster, we decided to do it again. I’ll start this post by giving a shoutout to MNDoT for turning 169 into a one lane road in honor of the holiday weekend. Dealing with that was just super invigorating. 

This weekend was MUCH more relaxing than our first cabin adventure. Perhaps because we were staying for a long weekend so we had time to get settled in. Perhaps because Critter is two weeks older and just handled it better. Perhaps because Critter realized the cabin is a fun place where Nana is too!  Perhaps because we knew what to expect. 

Or maybe we just got lucky.  We may never know.  

Billy, Marcus and I did some fishing on Big Pine. Marcus generally drinks beer and spectates. I cannot say that I blame him because this is generally not a bad idea.  


We also did some fishing with Uncle Doug and cousin Chris on Rice Lake.   


I didn’t know if I had a fish or a weed. 


It was a fish. The only one of the outing, actually. 

We did some fishing on Sunday night even though I was so tired I was dizzy. 
 


I’m so glad Mom and Marcus basically forced me out there because Billy is only here every so often. 

And we did some fishing on Monday morning before we left because Marcus is a great husband and Critter was a team player and took an extra long nap.  By extra long I mean 45 minutes instead of 35. 

Basically we fished. I drank a few beers. Others drank (more) beers. We tended to the boy king. I ate sprinkle donuts (6) and drank gas station Hazelnut coffee (true favorite). I ate meals I did not have to cook. That was possibly the best part of the whole weekend. 

I broke out the baby carrier for the flea market on Saturday and a walk in town on Sunday. Critter thought it was great and we got to do more activities!  

We also packed a baby lifejacket that we did not use. Critter’s first pontoon ride is now scheduled for the July 4th weekend. I did, however, dip Critter’s tiny feet into Big Pine Lake for the first time.  Just more things to look forward to. 

Friday Food Round-Up!

Guys, I know I sang Galina’s praises last week (she’s probably like OMG Kat stop blogging about me), but seriously Farmhouse Rules was the kick in the pants I needed to get back into a cooking groove.  I also tried to be a little more grateful as I was prepping our meals and cooking them.  Has my relationship to cooking changed?  Absolutely, yes.  But am I lucky to have a husband that takes care of our baby while I do it.  I just need to sit back and enjoy the process.

Plus, we’re still eating dinner together and now we get to do it outside. I’m trying really hard not to let that novelty wear off.

Friday – Lawn Chicken Salad from Farmhouse Rules

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This was a most interesting salad: avocado, dried apricots, slivered almonds, radishes, a dressing with curry powder and cumin.  Frankly, it seemed like something that Galina would action (we love her salads).  It was 11/10 and I think the dressing is one that I’ll start rotating into our homemade dressing cadre.

Saturday – Chicken Kebabs from Von Hanson’s with leftover pasta salad and green salad

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Marcus goes to Von Hanson’s fairly regularly during the summer to get lunch – it’s about a mile and a half from our house, so it makes a nice walk for him.  A few weeks ago he spied  pre-made kabobs in their case and reported that he felt they would make a good weekend meal.  I think we’ll start doing this more than takeout for our weekend at-home “date” nights because it gives us a chance to enjoy another meal on our deck, and it doesn’t take a lot of work on our part.

Monday – Turkey Burgers from Farmhouse Rules with Coleslaw and Grillin’ Beans

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I had super-high expectations for this meal.  I even bought apricot jam to make a BBQ sauce and apricot jam-glaze.

They were boring burgers.  Can’t win them all.

Tuesday – Chicken Enchilada Quinoa Soup

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Michelle came over and we needed a dinner.  And I forgot to take a picture so I used the last one because let’s be honest.  It was exactly the same.

Wednesday – Sausage Stew from Farmhouse Rules with Wilted Spinach tossed with Garlic and Red Pepper Flakes

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Truth: The spinach was going to be a salad but I have NOT been in a vegetable mood at all this week.  Marcus reported that it was good.  I tolerated it.

The sausage stew itself was delightful.  It was labeled as a “spring” recipe in the book, but this is definitely one we’ll wheel out once more come fall.

Miscellaneous – Earth Cookies

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I made it nearly a full week without making these and then I finally caved.  Absence makes the heart grow fonder.  They’re better than I remember!

 

A barely-blog. 

Last week I was standing in our garage wondering why sister wives aren’t a thing.  And once again this is a post I’ve been working on for nearly a week, which means I am averaging a bullet point per day.  Just call this a 365-day journal. 

  • Even though I don’t have one (a sister wife), I really feel like I kicked ass at Mom-ing last week. I was relaxed, I was calm, I was fun, I just enjoyed the company of my child. It was splendid. And then on Friday I was so wiped out I just crashed and burned. Not too proud to admit that.
  • Because photos of Critter are overtaking my phone, I was running into storage issues. I used this trick per Allison’s discovery and it worked.
  • Now that it’s consistently nice outside, Critter and I are outside on the deck on a blanket nest (or on a quilt on nana’s lawn!) at least once a day.  He is just incredibly fascinated by leaves right now so we spend quite a bit of time beholding them.
  • Sleep is terrible. Period.  This week I considered the fact that I have not slept a full night in at least 16 weeks and it was an awful, awful thought.  Combine this with the fact that I have no idea if we are in the four month sleep regression right now (his sleep’s not great but it could always be worse!) and we’re just…surviving.  Last week at dinner, I legit made Jillian describe a nap to me in great detail.  Sleep = The Greatest Mirage.
  • Working out is barely working. When I went back to work, I stopped doing yoga and that meant I did a bad thing to my calf muscle while I was out running on the Saturday before mother’s day. Stretching!  Is So Important!  That feels healed now, but I still haven’t quite gotten into a post-RTW routine. I’m not even sure what a reasonable goal is.  I think it’s probably yoga 3x/wk, and walks with Critter on the days that I am home.
  • On Monday, I started a list of things I someday hope to purchase from Target.  I know more than one of you has to be in this same boat. Send me your stories of solidarity. 
  • Critter is now (crosses self) in 12 month clothing. I am SO curious to find out his current stats at his four month appointment. It’s next week. Feel free to place bets in the comments. 

Friday Food Round-Up!

Y’all, I wish I could explain to you how Galina and I became friends, but honestly I have literally no clue.  I know that our husbands were friends before we were, but as to when exactly she came into my life is a mystery.  Maybe she could tell you.  I could tell you that she is the reason that I started running, and that we both ran our first half-marathon together.  I could tell you that our kitchens have identical shelves of cookbooks, completely by chance.  Just last week, she Amazon-ed me a copy of Farmhouse Rules and I loved her for it because as we all know, cooking has just been killing me lately.  I took her gift as an assignment and challenged myself to cook out of it all week because then our menu would be 100% refreshed.

Related: I hope you have a Galina in your life.

Sunday – Grampy Jim’s Ham Chicken Sandwich from Farmhouse Rules, Coleslaw, Tater Tots

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This sandwich was sickeningly good.  Obviously we didn’t make it with ham, we actually had a rotisserie chicken from Sunday’s lunch that I reincarnated instead.  We’ll be making this one again.

Monday – Lamb Chicken Stew with Sherry and Mushrooms over Buttered Noodles from Farmhouse Rules

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  1. This recipe suggested that it was completely acceptable to substitute beef or chicken for lamb.  So we did.
  2. We are honestly confused as to why one would make this with lamb or beef instead of chicken.
  3. It was delicious.
  4. It allowed me to deal with the remaining misfit carrots in my fridge.

Wednesday – Orzo Salad with Spring Peas from Farmhouse Rules

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Real talk: When Marcus went to Cub, he discovered that Orzo was like $10.  Me: DO NOT BUY.  I instead suggested ring noodles which were a much more economical choice.

Miscellaneous – Garden Pie

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Now that Marcus has frisbee on Tuesday nights, I need to be able to feed myself without leaving the house and also need to feed myself without putting in a lot of extra effort.  This was the right call.

Miscellaneous – Earth Cookies

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It happened.

Week 15 Updates

There was a point today where I was debating whether or not it was Tuesday or Thursday.  The only reason I was able to narrow it down to those two days is because they’re the ones I’m home with Critter.  Good thing I remembered that yesterday was Monday.

  • At this point I am not too proud to confess I am envious when I see snaps of people who are wearing appropriate adult clothing (aka things that have not been touched by youths or spit-up) or are living the liberated life of the child-free.  Just last week Marcus and I were discussing our pre-Critter life and the levels of sloth we were able to achieve. Nevermore.
  • We are in search of a disposable diaper that Critter doesn’t blow out for use on vacation and other long outings. Currently the Up & Up Size 2s are not cutting it. The current consensus is to try Pampers in Size 3.
  • I have finally drank the kool•aid and have purchased a class pass for the Yoga Mat Sanctuary. Basically what it comes down to is that I need a Tuesday activity.  We went to BYOB (Bring Your Own Baby) yoga for the first time today and it was great!  I think Critter was more interested in the ceiling fan and eating than the actual yoga but that is fine!
  • Critter and I finally got to check out the sweet skate park on our walking route. We tried out the half bowl (?) in the stroller. LOL. Sk8ers 4 life!
  • I’ve moved into that glamorous post-partum phase where my hair is falling out and I have the night sweats. This is like menopausal boot camp.
  • Critter’s passport arrived. The ordeal of sourcing this document for him is still a story that needs to be told. But!  Now we have a tiny world traveler-to-be!
  • From the department of pestilence: A flying rock on 169 cracked my windshield on Monday.  So there’s a new project to deal with.

Fishing Opener 2016


Like, I think it’s pretty obvious that I have zero time to blog these days, but it’s important to me that I keep up with the cabin-blogging. Looking back on these posts in the winter is what gives me joy when it’s becoming clear that we’re never going to be warm again.

ANYWAY. It was the Minnesota fishing opener and Billy was home from Texas. Had he not been home, I don’t know that we would have gone up. 

More importantly, it was Critter’s first time Up North!  He was just a champ for the drive up (the ride down wasn’t too bad either!) but we paid for it dearly on Friday night when we were treated to a reprisal of The Night Screaming. It was horrid and I am now more sure than ever that I have Absolutely No Idea as to how we survived it for as long as we did. 

On Saturday morning we put the dock in. It’s generally a chilly activity but this year, it was 34 degrees!  We were not deterred! Also, we had no choice!


This also reinforced my belief that Minnesotans are the hardiest of all Americans. 

Then I made Billy go fishing with me.

 This is the closest either of us have ever gotten to ice fishing. 


After my first catch, something fell off of my reel rendering it useless in the sense that it could barely reel. 


BUT I DID NOT LET THAT STOP ME AND I WAS REWARDED WITH TWO MORE FISH!


What a day!  I know some of you are thinking, Kat, what happened to your sweet plaid lifejacket?  Let me assure you it still lives. BUT. I have never been entirely sure of its True Buoyancy and on a day as cold as Saturday, I wanted to be sure if I went overboard, I would float. 

Other important items of business: I ate maple sprinkle donuts, drank Hazelnut Coffee, we had Zorbaz pizza (worth the wait).  Auntie Kim made Sweaterbox Chicken Salad. 

Amen.