Thursday, February 28, 2008

Soak Up the Sun

What's the benefit of living in the desert in February, you ask? Beautiful weather..
Marlee on the patio in her exersaucer

The past couple of days have been completely gorgeous and we have definitely been taking advantage of this. Marlee and Mama have been hanging out on the patio, going for walks to the park with the Bubba's, and completely enjoying this beautiful, sunny weather. It has been in the mid 70's..perfect.

Even the Bubba's have been enjoying the weather.

Lazy Cooper soaking up the sun

Mollie in her usual spot, top of the waterfall, scoping out the neighborhood and finding something or someone to bark at.

Anyone jealous? I can't wait until summer when Marlee gets to go for her first swim.

On a side note..once we have gotten through the cold winter months and it's springtime with high's in the 70 to 80's, it seems so hot outside. Then after the scorcing summers we have here in the desert, and it cools off to 70 or 80 degrees, it feels so cold outside..ironic, isn't it?

Friday, February 15, 2008

7 months

Better late than never, right?

Marlee Kay is seven months old. Well, on February 10, she was seven months old.

About one week after Marlee turned six months old she started really rolling. One morning I put her down on the floor in the family room, she threw her head back, lifted her arm up in the air...and rolled, and rolled, and rolled. She is now a pro at this rolling thing.

Marlee rolling herself up in blanket

Another exciting thing happened this month, on January 21, Marlee sat up unassisted. She can sit up on her own for about ten seconds. I must say she is not a fan of this whole sitting up thing and often times throws herself back, telling me "no Mama"!
After about a month, Marlee is just starting to get this whole solid food and eating with a spoon thing. This past month she ate (I use the word ate very loosely) peas, bananas, apples, and pears. She loves pears. She is finally starting to "get it" and will open her mouth for food.

Let's talk sleep. Overall, Marlee is a great sleeper and usually goes down for naps and bedtime very willingly. Of course, there is always exceptions to this but I certainly cannot complain. Dave or I give her a nighttime bottle, take her in her room, and read her a bedtime story. She loves story time. When the story is done, we close the book and put it in front of Marlee. She then "bams" the book. I'm not sure why but she so enjoys doing this. She slaps the book over and over smiling and laughing all the while.

It's not just books Marlee likes to bam. She bams toys, the floor, Mama's face, pretty much anything.
I see so much of Dave in Marlee. She does this thing where she crinkles up her nose and snorts, in and out. I laugh, so then she laughs, and snorts and snorts. This so reminds me of Dave's laugh. When he laughs he throws his head back and crinkles up his nose, too. Like Father, like Daughter. I swear some days I look at Marlee and see Dave staring back at me.

While on the topic of Dave, Marlee said Dada! On her seven month birthday she was in her jumparoo, talking and squealing as usual, and she screamed out "dadadadada." You can only imagine how giddy this has made Dave since he has been coaching her for four months now.
She also found her feet and toes on February 10. And, yes, her toes went straight into her mouth, as well as anything else she can get her hands on these days.

I cannot even begin to explain the joy Marlee Kay has brought to my life. So often I forget the many years of trying, struggling, hoping. It all seems nothing but a distant memory.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Happy Hearts Day!!

This is what Marlee Kay and I woke up to today:

I was so pleasantly surprised. Dave got Marlee a Valentine's card and a bear. I had no idea..boy is he showing me up! It's so exciting because it's like her surprise is also my surprise. Sorry ladies, he's a keeper!

Doesn't Marlee look cute in her holiday outfit?

And look what she did today..

Yes, she's standing on her own..with assistance from the couch, of course.

I made the best dinner..steak, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, crab cakes, and salad. For dessert I made Kristy's texas brownies and chocolate covered strawberries..yum yum!

My Valentine Sweets..

Hope everyone enjoyed their day..<3

Thursday, February 7, 2008

my miracle of life..

My Marlee Kay,

before you were conceived
i wanted you
before you were born
i loved you
before you were an hour old
i would die for you
this is the miracle of life

~Maureen Hawkins

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

It's sOOper Tuesday

As a child, you are always told you can do and be what you want to be. However, there is no doubt that, still today, racism and sexism exists in this country. That is why this election is so important. No matter who gets the Democratic nominee, history will be made. This country is finally moving forward. I look at Marlee and think, she can be whatever she wants to be and it is such a wonderful feeling. Any parent knows that once you have a child, everything changes. Once I had Marlee, my life changed. Every thought, belief, and view I have relates back to Marlee and how this will have a direct affect on her and her future. How will the choices I make and we make as a society today shape and influence Marlee's life? These are my thoughts when I think about who the next President of the United States should be.

Okay, enough of the mush. Today is Super Tuesday...history is in the making. So, in honor of today I found this presidential survey:

Answer the questions TRUTHFULLY and you will see which candidate best matches your view on important issues. Dave and I both did the survey and I will spare you with the details of our outcome, but let's just say Dave was quite surprised, or maybe he wasn't!

Note: if you have trouble following the link, just go to and click on the presidential survey listed under Super Tuesday-MPR'S Select A Candidate.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Recipe Reinvention #2

Anyone interested in my recipe reinvention of the week? One of my favorite recipes growing up as a child is chicken noodle soup over mashed potatoes. I enjoy making this dinner on a gloomy, rainy day but I always have SO much soup leftover. No matter how hard I try to make a small pot of soup, I always end up with enough soup to feed a family of 8. Why not just eat the soup leftover, you ask? Just not my favorite thing. So, I have come up with a chicken pot pie for my leftover reinvention. It actually turned out pretty darn tasty. Again, very vague recipes. Who is really precise when it comes to soup?

Night #1 Chicken noodle soup over mashed potatoes
In a stock pot cover chicken and your choice of root vegetables with quite a bit of water - my choice of veggies: carrots, celery, and parsnips
Season water
Cook chicken until done
Once chicken is done, remove and cut into bite size pieces
Add chopped chicken back into the pot with the veggies
Season to taste
*At this point, before you add noodles and thicken, reserve about half of your stock, chicken and veggies (for second night reinvention)
Add your choice of noodles and cook until done
Thicken sauce to desired consistency
Serve in a bowl over mashed potatoes - everyone knows how to make mashed potatoes, right?
and bread or biscuits
..Yummy, I believe this is an Unruh recipe. So good, it's kind of like chicken and dumplings (I use the words "kind of" loosely)

Night #2-Chicken pot pie
In a pot, make a ru (sp?) with butter and flour
Add leftover chicken soup
Add a dollop of sour cream (optional-made gravy nice and creamy)
Add cooked, cubed potato(es) to soup (I just baked 2 russet potatoes, peeled and cubed. You could even use precut frozen or canned)
Season to taste
Simmer on med-low until soup is heated through and has thickened (5-10 minutes)
Pour soup into individual soup bowls
Cover bowls with pie dough (homemade or store bought)
Cut slits in dough and brush with egg wash
Cook at 400 degrees for about 25-30 minutes

I served a side salad and bread and..