Monday, July 28, 2008

monday, monday

Today, I promised Isadore that we would go on a hike together at Powell Butte since I left her behind on my walk last night around the neighborhood (not an easy neighborhood to walk in since there is that super steep hill and no shoulder--not kid-friendly.) What is up with all this walking, you ask? Well, I took an idea from my friend Amy (Syma Says) and her friend Jess (the SUV-driving-bitch your mother warned you about) to work out once a day for 21 days. This seemed like a good comittment to me--not so long that you are destined to failure but also long enough to become a bit of a habit. For example, squeezing in a walk just before dinner really isn't that hard but unless I have to or it's a common occurance then I won't (I'd crack a beer instead). Seven days into it and it's going very well--I've either walked Powell Butte (and sometimes do some yoga at the top), walked the neighborhood, or done a good yoga routine everyday. I have to do this. I hate being attached to weight but I am very unhappy being this heavy. I've never weighed this much before--even at the height of my pregnancy with Mayan I was still a few pounds less that I am now. And it isn't only that my clothes fit poorly (which would be reason enough for this fashion-conscious mama!) but that I just feel out of shape. Obviously, I have a newborn, and these things take time, so I should cut myself a break but I really feel like I could be more active and that will only help my situation. I am not "watching what I eat" or counting calories, I am a nursing mama and I will eat what feels right, but being more active will help a lot.

Working out is actually something I find very strange. Americans simulate walking and biking on a stationary machine in front of thier tv sets--that is how lacking our lifestyles are in phyical activity! We actually have to set aside time in our days to move our bodies! I have rocked a treadmill on my iPod, so I am not shaming anyone but I am often asking myself "what is natural?" In a simpler world, our daily life would be enough to keep us fit. Sometimes when I walk up the neighborhood north of ours on Mt. Scott, past the exceedingly large and close together mini-mansions, I think in a simpler time I would have been hoofing it daily (sometimes twice!) up and down this hill to fetch water or go to the market with a basket on my head. I would not have time to "work-out"--that would seem ABSURD--but instead my daily activities would keep my muscles tone and body strong. But this IS America and I have to actually force myself to load up my children in their government approved carseats, along with my jogging stroller (complete with cup holder and sun shade!) in the back of my giant Suburban and drive to a "nature park" kindly set aside from the urban spew, and walk along it's paved paths so that I can burn off the calories I have ingested and work my muscles. Brilliant!

The girls though have enjoyed accompanying me on my outings, which brings me back to our day today. i told Isadore she and I and George could take that hike up Powell togetherr today, just the three of us. Team Perlingieri members B and MG would stay behind and work on the play structure. We were Team Perlingieri, unit 3: not only were their three of us but George is now 3 months, Isadore is technically still 3, and I am 3 to the 3rd power. Yeah, we're dorks. I also had some other errands to run with them such as bringing a large pile of CDs to sell at a music store, then hitting the teacher supply store for some handwriting paper, and finally going to the Goodwill to shop for books. Speaking of three, this ended up being a triple bust. The CD store only wanted 4 of my Cd's (out of like 15), the teacher supply store is no longer there (I drove all around mall 205 twice looking for it!), and then when we finally got to the Goodwill, I unloaded a sleeping and very sweaty George in to my sling, and took Isadore's hand only to notice that she had peed her pants! (She claimed it was water but it smelled like pee to me...) We bailed the mission and headed home. Oh, well, I really like my life enough that I will take the occassional "typical Monday" anyday without much of a fight.

Hope everyone else had a decent Monday;-)

Monday, July 21, 2008

Mayan Grace is officially six years old

I feel like since my baby, my first child, has completely shed not only her baby-ness but all signs of toddlerhood somehwere in the last few years, that I should have some epic downpouring of reflection to mark this occasion...but I don't. She just IS. And it happened so gradually, so sweetly and intense, that I barely even recall what it was like to hold her as an infant, or how her face looked if it were not for photographs. When I see her then in a picture I marvel how that face and body could have morphed into the face and body I see before me today. But there she is, and I've always thought the best adjective to describe Mayan IS Mayan--she's become her own adjective. Spunky, bright, curious, sassy all in somewhat of a laid-back manner. I've always questioned how to wrange her potent spirit and guide it best, without having it burn out of control, or just burn out--I've always wondered how best to be her mother, and I've veered in many directions, but have come to terms that no matter how I parent her, SHE will always come though in the end. I need to worry less, and enjoy her more because it's truly fascinating getting to know how she works. Sometime when I see a quality that I envy in her I realize its something she has gotten from me--that helps center me. I am the Mother of Mayan, and I am forever changed for the better.

Whoa, I guess I did have something to say about it....:-)

Here was our day today:

fried chicken tenders are the perfect beach food: fill a ziplock bag with 2 parts rice flour, 1 part tapioca flour and 1/2 part flax meal, plus a few tsp of salt and a few tsp of dry mustard powder. dip some chicken pieces (this time i did tenders but drumsticks are great too) in a shallow pan with rice milk, then place then in the flour-mix bag and shake shake shake to coat. fry them in an inch of high-heat cooking oil (safflower or canola)

a little sisterly sand burying

blake is on dogs-not-on-leash-patrol

my beautiful daughter

my how they grow!!!

surprises awaited us when we returned!

cookie made a jewelry box--and sent other great things like a bike basket and bike horn--watch out knapp street!

what is that flash of white, you ask? its the girls so excited about the dresses that uncle walter and uncle bruce sent that they could not wait to try them on

darling, eh?

the chocolate "butterfly" cake....i wonder what her wish is!

thanks to all her who called and sent gifts. mayan kept declaring all day what a perfect birthday it was. she was full of gratitude by the end of it all. love!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


It's still 5 weeks away (Mayan's birthday is this coming Monday) but it has really been sriking me lately how incredible it is that Isadore is going to be FOUR. I am just as stuck that Mayan will be SIX (it seems to be like entering into a whole nother dimension of childhood as the teeth fall out and they become "school-aged") but seeing Isadore become a big sister to George has helped me see into her personality a bit better. Since Mayan goes to work with Blake a few times a week, I have the honor of spending more focused time with Isadore and watch her new role as "older sibling" develop--she adores George and adopts all of the pet names for him that we have, sweetly singing them to his face while he lights up like a tree at her attention. I am definitely seeing a relationship blossom between them that I have not seen between Mayan and him (Mayan claims she's been through all of this before--the new sibling thing--and plays it very cool.)

Here are some pics she took of us the other day:

Currently, black is her favorite color; her thing for ninjas has made a comeback, especially since I bought her these leggings with an attached skirt at a thrift store a few weeks ago. If she sees anyone wearing all black she says "Look, a ninja!" Or if I am wearing black pants and a colored top she tells me I am "half-ninja." She told me that last night she had a dream about ninjas--there was a good ninja and a bad ninja, and the good ninja saved her from danger so they got married. "Getting married" is her equivalent to any sort of love right now. She asks Blake to marry her everyday, and if she likes something I cook she tells me we will be married in the morning. Look closely and you miiiight be able to spot her:

Ah, there she is, my sweet little ninja!

Monday, July 14, 2008

stop and smell the baby

Today, after putting on something cute and making sure my purse had all the appropriate diaper-bag things, I grabbed my Anthropologie bag to go exchange a top I had recently purchased. The girls were still helping Blake build the fence out front, and George, my constant companion was changed and recently nurse and ready as well. I realized though that I didn't actually know where I was going--Bridgeport Villiage in Tigard had the shirt I needed (I had just spoken with them on the phone to confirm the exchange.) So as I mapquested this uber-shopping-mecca, guess who passed out in my arms? Oh, yes, Mr. Man. Baby Meat Fat. Little Georgie Boy. Is that a big deal, you ask. Well, it is. I say it all the time but George-Ephraim is such a good sleeper. At least compared to my other children he is. When I know he is tired, I merely swaddle him up and bind the swaddle with my American Apparel scarf (who knew it had such a perfect other purpose?) then lay him down in his Moses basket or in the purple baby hammock that hangs in our dining room. Sometimes he need to suck on my finger for a few minutes, other times just a few minutes of bouncing, or otherwise he just "meeps to sleep" gazing at the grass-woven grasshopper mobile. He'll sleep like this for a long time--maybe 2-3 hours, and usually twice a day. I used to either nursing or wearing my children to sleep. I feel very productive as he sleeps this way, and at times wait for him to awake b/c I miss him. On days where we are out-and-about, he takes little naps between the car seat and sling but is past that can-sleep-through-anything-newborn phase, and by teh end of the day is pretty cranky for a big fat nap...again I just swaddle and bind, and lay him own in his bassinet and he's out like a light. He sleeps his first night-time stretch between 4 and 7 hours (7 is our best yet and it only happened once). I use that time to read, connect with B, and sleep a few hours in any position I want without a hot baby body next to me. When he finally does fuss anywhere between 2 and 4, I scoop him up and pop a boob in his mouth and he nurses on and off the rest of the night, and we sleep until 9 or so. This is the routine we are all getting accustomed too. Which brings me back to my story. not since the first few weeks has he really napped ON me. So when he passed out in my arms today, I could not resist. Screw Anthropologie (yes, I said it!!) it can wait. I moved to my rocking chair and listened to U2's All That You Can't Leave Behind while just studying his sweet face--the round baby nose, pale yellow eye crusties clinging to his eyelashes, the poochy overbite and delicate chin, and the sweat-soaked curls smashed against my chest. With a family of five in full force, I wasn't sure if I would have the chance again for a long while. I thought to myself sometimes in life you just have to stop and smell the sleeping baby.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

it's so easy!

i have never made my own playdough before....until today! it's SO EASY! six years into motherhood and i wonder what took me so freakin' long?

this is what you need:
1 cup flour (don't waste your good organic flour on this like i did)
1 cup warm water
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon oil
1/4 cup salt
food coloring

huck all but the coloring in a pot and stir over medium heat:

once it smooths then starts to chunk up add the coloring:

keep stirring until it forms into a ball and looks doughy:

plop it onto the counter and knead it until blended--careful, its hot!

i had royal blue and ivory food coloring and these were the colors we made:

let it cool before handing it to your cute kids (or grandkids or neices and nephews...) to make cute stuff:

keeps moist for a long time in airtight containers.

10 pictures of George's first beach trip

last monday we headed west toward the ocean--i've been dying to go to the beach since last fall but in oregon you only get nice beach-weather in the summer. the closest town is Seaside and the closest beach is called Ecola State Park (sounds like E coli but i am sure this beach was named long before the bacteria made headlines)--it took us an hour and a half to get there with minimal kid-flooping (classic parent-kid conversations along the way: how much longer? has it been and hour and a half yet? no, it's been fifteen minutes. oh, can have a snack? sorry, the food is in the trunk; we'll picnic when we get there. oh....will you hand me that book? *sigh*) of course, mr. best-baby-ever didn't make a peep until we pulled into the beach parking lot. it was not to hot day i anticipated, but luckily we all had extra hoodies in the trunk; it ended up pretty cloudy and coolish the whole time but it didn't rain--blake deemed it perfect weather since he dislikes the sun anyway. i love how the beach is a large section of smooth rocks before the sand starts...we pulled up a piece of driftwood for a bench on the egde of the rocks and layed out our stuff on the sand. despite the cool temps, it didn't take long for the girls to strip down to their suits and chase the surf. george-ephraim just meeped and squinted in his stylish american apparel hoodie. after a while, blake had a flashback to when he and his sister explored tide pools so we took a walk toward some giant rocks in the distance, and sure enough we found some starfish and sea anenomes. the three of them were so cute looking for sea creatures! all-in-all, a successful family-of-five day trip to the beach...maybe next time we'll stay overnight in a yurt!

a self-family-portrait success!

it's no wonder his nickname is "baby meat fat"