Friday, August 26, 2011

fall colors

blueberry picking at Hatcher's Pass
The fern in our woods have turned a ruddy brown overnight. We are getting ready to chop more firewood for winter, and teatime is happening about twice a day on average lately. Fall colors surround me...

This is my old (o l d) Bible. My stepmom gave it to me when I was sixteen, and that was over half my life ago. Clear tape holds the spine together (I thought of using duct tape, since this is Alaska, but couldn't quite bring myself to it). And we've been reading Justin Morgan Had a Horse (the kids love it when I sing the title to the tune of "Old MacDonald") - and though I was never into horses or horse stories as a kid, I am loving these classics by Marguerite Henry. 

Made this soup tonight - chili corn chowder, off the cuff, which is pretty much the only way I know how to cook (recipes are just suggestions, right?). This is by no means a foodie blog (we'll leave that to the fabulous Joy the Baker) but this was darn good. Let me tell you...
1. Get a big pot. Chop up some reindeer sausage (or, for you non-Alaskans, ham or kielbasa would work) and a whole onion. Yes, I said a whole onion - just go for it. Throw it in the pot and cook on medium. 
2. Chop some celery - I used three stalks, and I'm amazed that I actually remembered an amount to tell you, because I really don't keep track of measurements - and throw that in, too. I would also toss in some garlic, but I forgot to this time.
3. Find a five year old who likes to open cans, and get him to work on two cans of diced tomatoes, one can of green chilies, and a can of tomato paste.
4. Stir in about...I dunno, a half-cup of brown rice. On top of that, toss in a few cups of chicken or turkey broth. I make this in big batches and freeze in containers, so I had to wait for mine to thaw. Dump in the tomatoes, add a few chopped green chilies, and drizzle a little molasses on top. Stir in the tomato paste, and maybe add a little flour and water if you don't think it's thick enough.
5. Add a bunch of corn, and keep simmering until the rice is done. I also added some shakes of black pepper, and if I weren't sharing it with the kids, I would've added some cayenne, too. Serve with shredded cheese and a dollop of plain yogurt or sour cream. And if you ask the kids if they want a "dollop" of yogurt, even the non-yogurt eaters will want some just because it sounds so cool.

Sophie is not fall-colored. She is also not allowed on the counter, but that didn't seem to matter because she wanted to be part of the photo (I guess it still doesn't matter, because she's asleep there right now and I'm not doing anything about it - she's good company). 

And, some beautiful fall things that you might like...
French Press Cozy - Mustard, Plum

Peasant baby dress Red Damask Size 0-3 month 3-6 months 6-9 months 9-12 months 12-18 months 18-24 months 2T 3T 4T 5T 6 7 8

piper jane's reversible pinafore - pop garden - 18 - 24 mo, 2T, 3T, 4T, 5T

knit baby earflap hat or photo prop, newborn to 3 months - cranberry red with stripes, ready to ship

October Splendor Series - Brass Findings - Earrings with Green 2

Quick side note - JM handmade, mompotter and Baruch's Lullaby are all nominated in Babble's top 50 Etsy moms of 2011! You can vote for all of us! JM Handmade is "Joanne" (currently in 12th place), mompotter is, well, mompotter (and kicking our tails in first place!) and your very own Baruch's Lullaby is currently just 2 clicks away from 3rd place, as "Shannon." It just takes a few seconds to vote for each of us! Thanks! Hope you are having a lovely fall!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

because I can't wait

I just have to do something. You get that way, ever? The hurry-up-and-wait syndrome has me by the nape of the neck and I just need to shake it back sometimes. So.

First, quick adoption update - our kiddos (a boy and a girl, if you're new around here) are a l m o s t officially on hold for us. What does that mean? It means that shortly after their government reconvenes (it's on vacation, don't you know) they will be officially waiting for us. Not officially adopted yet - that's different and comes a little later, of course, but this is the next big step.

So we wait, and work our tails off in our own country with paperwork and fundraising and knitting mittens and crazy love hats and crocheting scarves and loving our kids and fabricating ridiculously long run-on sentences. Because what else can you do when you have two children across the world that are supposed to be yours and you can't hold them yet?!?

Another thing I thought I could do is have a giveaway on our Facebook fan page. Please, distract me.

Same as's easy - simply refer people to our Facebook fan page (because I'm too ADHD right now to handle more than 1 rule) and have them write on our wall that you sent them, so I can keep track. That's it. Once they "like" our page, they can send friends over, too, and enter the giveaway also, if they want. Whoever sends the most people to us gets a $25 gift certificate to Baruch's Lullaby. Sound good? Let's run this from now until...ummm (checking calendar, looking for a day that randomly ends in "y") ...Friday, August 19th, 9pm AK time.

Your word-of-mouth support helps us incredibly! We are expecting around $4000 in fees that will be due over the next month or so, and shortly after that we'll be looking at airfare expenses from Alaska to B***aria for our first trip over. We are not worried in the least because God has this thing covered front, back, and sideways. Thanks so much for your support and prayers as we bring our kids home. ♥

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

down time

I love down time...time to kick back and read, or play a game, or put on the hiking boots and find some hill to climb. We've been squeezing in a little less of that this summer with all of the adoption stuff going on, but we've still got a few months up our sleeve before the snow flies. Here's what we've been up to with the little Lullabies, outside of knitting...

I started this quilt (I think?) two years ago. Pieced the first four rows by hand, because I'm crazy like that, then finally got desperate enough to break down and learn how to thread the bobbin on the sewing machine my grandma gave me years ago. It's coming along nicely now...hope to have it done by Christmas for a special little strawberry-haired girl I know.

Here is the oldest Lullaby climbing trees at a friend's house. The kids were playing tag, and he thought this was a great way to avoid getting tagged, until someone grabbed a flip-flop and chucked it at him. They missed. But after several tries, the flip-flop-wielding child requested their grandmother's help, and so Nana got into the action (she's a friend, so I don't mind if she throws shoes at my firstborn, really) and I think she finally just barely brushed his foot with the projectile.

This is what all the big-time models do between photo shoots, right?

Did a little camping and piggybacking at Eklutna Lake. Still on the list - Gold Cord Lake, Hatcher's Pass, and blueberry picking. Hope you all are having a beautiful summer. ♥