Thursday, March 26, 2009

Not on my agenda for today

but had to share! Enjoy:

I really didn't intend to scrap today, but by golly, I found the time. These papers and embellishments came from Memory Makers Magazine and Free Digital Find the free downloads and go for it!

Both of these pages are made in Microsoft's Digit Image Editor 2006. I love it. But apparently other people don't, because Microsoft doesn't make this anymore. Maybe they figured out they were installing software for FREE, that Adobe is selling for about $200. Or maybe other photo editing software offers more options. But whatever the case, I am very happy with my current set-up :-)

Not All That

The verdict is still out on Nexium. We have upped the dose, and Holly is irritable. Cranky. and a little bossy too. Ok, the bossy part is probably all baby, not reflux!

That brings me back to the issue of Hope. Does my hope lie in the medicine? or in the doctor? No. Of course, I had a tiny glimmer of hope that this medicine would be "all that" and maybe more. That Holly would really feel better and happy more often.

Still, the actual object of my Hope is God. Hope that He loves her more than me. That He knows more about what she needs than I do. Hope that God hears my prayers and will answer them.

I don't know what the next step will be for our Little One Feather, but I will continue to place my Hope in God, and trust Him.

Like Peter said, "Master, to whom shall we go?" John 6:68

Simply Perfect Pie

Over on Bakerella's blog, she posted a request for a pie crust recipe for beginners. ALOT of people responded. Thought you'd like to know one really simple pie crust recipe too!
(If you click over to Bakerella's...aren't those the cutest chick cake pops for Easter?)

Many years ago, I subscribed to Family Fun magazine. When Lee Allison was little, I found lots and lots of great ideas. But the best and most lasting was the Classic Apple Pie recipe and Flaky Pie Crust.

From their site:

This recipe will teach your kids the basics of mixing up a flaky crust--the first and most important step in baking an apple pie.


2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
5 tbsp. cold vegetable shortening
8 tbsp. ice water


Ask your child to measure the flour, sugar and salt into a gallon-size sealable plastic bag. Seal and shake the bag to combine.

bag Add the chilled butter pieces and shortening to the bag, then have your child press down on the bag with their palms.

The goal is to flatten the butter and shortening and coat them with flour to produce a flaky, layered crust.

Open the bag and add the ice water. Reseal, then press and shake until the dough holds together (add more water, if necessary).

For mess-free cooking with kids, mix up piecrust and other doughs in a sealable bag instead of a bowl.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead it together, then divide in half.

Flatten each half into a disk, wrap in plastic and chill for at least 30 minutes.

roll dough Roll out one of the disks on a lightly floured surface until you have a circle that's about 12 inches in diameter.

Line a 9-inch pie plate with the dough, trimming any extra from the edges with a sharp knife (parents only). Return it to the refrigerator until you are ready to make the pie. Makes 1 double crust.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Whine, whine, whine

My sister just got a new software to make digital scrapbook pages! Hooray! Now we can scrap together, even if by phone.

Except, all I've heard so far is how hard it is and how slow the computer is and ...

I almost, almost wanted to say: hey, knock it off. Almost.

I didn't because of course, everyday she has faithfully commiserated with me over Holly's night time adventures. Every day. And never once has she told me to get a grip. Not to mention how I have labored over the point here on the blog.

Of course, I remember how little Bill and Anna slept when he was a baby. If I wasn't up with one, I was up with the other. Those were crazy days too.

Anyway, I am off to my sister's house tonight to break in the new software. And am so excited for us to be scrapping together again!

And, T, thanks for listening.

Monday, March 23, 2009

About last night...

Most days, when I see my Dad, he asks, "What was the schedule last night?" Sometimes I can say, she was up two times. On bad nights I say "I don't remember."

But I remember last night and I'll be calling the GI doctor today. Here's the run down:

Sunday (day)
(1) one hour nap

Sunday (night)
6:30 bedtime
9:30 2 ounces
11:30 pm 2 ounces + Tylenol (she would fall asleep sitting up and cry/arch back when she laid down)
2:30 am 2 ounces same thing, except instead of sleeping 3 more hours...
3:30 am 2 ounces + Mylicon, again would sleep sitting up
4:30 am Mylicon
5ish (who really cares by now?) She was up for the day.

I can't really blame her. That's a really bad night.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Hope is a funny thing...

Just after Holly's endoscope Tuesday, I was out with the other children. We stopped to fill the new prescription and my oldest asked if I "really had any hope that this medicine would be better."

I answered, "a little." And added that I had to have some hope, because no hope is called despair. Despair is a sin. And of all the sins I am dragging around, despair is easy enough to avoid. It only takes a little bit of hope to side swipe despair.

For those days when your heart may feel hope-less, cling to the facts. The fact is this:

Romans Ch 5:5 Hope does not disappoint because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.

Bottom line is this: Even when nothing works out the way it should, I choose every day to cling to Hope. You can make the choice with your head and not your heart, if you have to, if your heart isn't there. Hold on the fact, "Hope does not disappoint" until your heart catches on.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Hi-ho, Hi-Hats!

Holly's endoscope went well today. She bounced back as curious as ever. And is shaking a baby gate as we speak. The results of the test are: esophagitis or reflux. It's official. We'll try Nexium now and hope for better results than with the Prevacid. The GI doctor could see the inflamed tissue in her esophagus, but thankfully no scar tissue. She took the first capsule, sprinkled over applesauce no problem. Let's hope the rest of the night continues as well.

What else can you do to pass an anxious day? Make a trial run at hi-hat cupcakes. I have been reading about this on other blogs. And had really hoped to make a pistachio/cream cheese frosted hi-hat for St. Patrick's Day. However, this is what I had in the house: Double Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream Icing and White Chocolate hi-hat.

Not too shabby for a first attempt. Here's what I'll improve next time: First, don't OD on chocolate :-) If you are craving chocolate these are for you. Second, make the icing a little stiffer so it will pile a little higher and create an actual HIGH hat. Third, I resolve to stop trying to draw with chocolate. I just can't make this work for me. Royal Icing I can do but not chocolate. These shamrocks are from white chocolate colored green. The chocolate gets too stiff before I can even pipe it out. And finally, I will pay closer attention to the bake time. The could have stayed in the oven a few more minutes.

I do love this recipe for the cupcake. It is from the Our State North Carolina, February 2009 magazine. Chef is Charlotte Fekete

Double Chocolate Cupcakes

1 stick butter
1/2 cup semisweet chips

Melt this together in microwave, 30 sec, stir, 30 sec.

Stir in 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 cup sour cream, 1/3 cup milk, 2 large eggs, 1/2 tsp vanilla.
Whisk in 3/4 cup all purpose flour, 1/4 cup cocoa powder, 1/2 tsp baking powder, pinch of salt.

Mix until combined. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 mins (I should have gone closer to 25 mins!)

If I had the extra sour cream in the house I would have made this glaze like frosting (and skipped the hi-hat trial, still I have to start somewhere!)

1/2 cup sour cream, 1/2 cup powdered sugar, 1 1/2 T cocoa powder.

Spread on cool cupcakes.

The Buttercream Icing I did use came straight off the back of the cocoa powder container. The hi-hat part was far easier than I expected. The icing did not fall off into the chocolate or melt away either. With a picture like the red velvet hi hats, well I can dream can't I?

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Sour Stomach

This coming Tuesday, Holly will have an endoscope to finally see what is going on in that tummy. The GI doctor is looking for one of four things: acid, allergies, ulcer or bacteria. Since the prevacid isn't healing whatever is happening, the doctor said he needs to know exactly what he is dealing with.

So here we go, another procedure, another anesthesia, 5th time in a year. Almost to the day of her first surgery. Leaves me with a sour stomach.

On the positive side, at last the doctor does believe there is something wrong. Up until now he (and every other doctor we've seen) has been saying things like: this is very rare, not likely your daughter has any allergy or reflux, she'll out grow it. Very aggravating to keep showing up with a list of 'what happened this month' and hear that there is probably nothing wrong.

So he believes me now. And I have a new focus for Lent: Forgiveness. And still Hope. After all this isn't a tv show where you get an answer at the end of 30 mins.

Please remember Holly on Tuesday, ask God to give this doctor wisdom to find the cause of her tummy troubles.


One mystery solved. Although I had thought the switch to soy toddler formula had helped the unsual raw, red spots on Holly's tongue. They reappeared this past week or so.

The spots begin small. And seem to be raw red patches on her tongue. And these patches move around. Beginning in one spot and moving to other areas. Never quite covering her whole tongue but sometimes very large areas are affected.

This condition is called Geographic tongue. It doesn't have any clear cause or cure, it comes and goes. It can cause the tongue to be sensitive or tender. But according the the Mayo Clinic website, it can have triggers. One of these triggers is allergies. Maybe Holly got something with milk in it? Maybe it was something else.

Either way, I believe this Geographic Tongue contributes to Holly's inconsistent eating habits. Some days she will mow down her food. Other times she won't eat anything. These past two weeks she has eaten less and less solid food. Over this last week hardly anything solid at all, not even her favorite pretzel sticks.

I think the tides are turning and her tongue looked better yesterday. Holly ate a little soup and a pretzel stick, and slept better too. At least I have a name to the condition, I've been asking since August. Finally asked the right doctor.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Of flies and honey

“A spoonful of honey attracts more flies than a barrelful of vinegar"

"Do as the little children who with one hand hold fast to the hand of their father and with other gather strawberries or blackberries along the hedges. In the same manner, while gathering and managing the goods of this world with one hand, hold fast with the other to the hand of your heavenly Father, turning to see is your actions or occupations are pleasing to him."

"Be both Martha and Mary. Diligently carry out your duties and often recollect yourself and put yourself in spirit at the feet of our Lord. Say, "My Lord, wether I'm rushing around or staying still, I am all yours and you are all mine. You are my first spouse, and whatever I do is for the love of you."

St. Francis De Sales

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Big Sky Dreams

Remember that scene in "Apollo 13" where Tom Hanks' character is looking at the moon and covers it with his thumb. He wanted to be there. I think about that moment, the dream.

I wonder if it began for that astronaut on a day like this:

Anna's home school science class launched their rockets today. The sun was bright, the sky very blue, weather warm. The boys chased the rockets to gather the pieces. Some of the parachutes broke away from the rockets, and the girls were excited to be there and see their creations take flight.
What a great day to dream!

The Big Game

I think it was this weekend between UNC and Duke. Did anyone watch it? Who won? Curious, only because I made these cookies for the occasion.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Sleepless in NC

Forget any advice I have EVER offered on sleep. Holly is like The Borg. Except cuter.

Resistance is Futile.

She adapts to every sleep strategy with an amazing speed. We try oatmeal or rice, one night it works. Never again though. She rejects the bottle out right. Then is hungry the rest of the night. Which means AWAKE.

We tried sleep training. First night cried for 15 mins, fell asleep. Second night, cried until she threw up.

We tried Motrin (thinking about teething pain). First night slept for hours. Never worked again. Stopped after third night because after all Motrin isn't really good for anyone. Especially anyone with stomach troubles.

We tried making sure she has a big supper. Then light supper in case too much food is too heavy.

She falls asleep no problem. Keeping her asleep is the struggle. I think last night was teeth. Tylenol and that baby orajel worked in 4 hour intervals.

I need a new plan.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Heat Miser takes a day off!

It snowed in the South in March! How cool is that? Bill and Anna went out at 6 am and were soaked pretty quickly. Lee came to the door covered head to toe from a snow ball fight. Daddy and Holly are napping and I am so happy to sneak in some more scrapbook time!

All the month of January I prayed for a really big snow. Thank you, Lord for this day! Anybody else soaking up the rare moment? Enjoy it! I'm headed to make hot cocolate and have a cookie too.

Snow Day means...

more time to make scrapbook pages... Hooray!