Archive for August, 2010

First Day of Preschool

Originally uploaded by Wandering Eyre

Yesterday was Gideon’s first day of preschool. This means that two days a week, he will now go to school and I will have a few hours to get some writing done. Finally!

He was very excited to go. In fact, all weekend, whenever he got in trouble, he cried, “I want to go to school and see my teachers!”

We met his teachers on Friday and I assume he thinks that they are much nicer than mean mom who makes you go to time-out for breaking the rules. He is right, they probably are much nicer then me.

In this picture, Gideon has on his backpack and his lunch box around his neck, where he placed it himself. As soon as the classroom door opened, he raced in and never looked back. He barely registered my departure. I watched about half the kids in his class throw huge, clinging fits and was glad I have never had to deal with that from Gideon.

They painted, played on the playground, went to music, and played and played. I am glad he likes it so much and I am glad to have some time to myself.


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I have always loved flavored mashed potatoes that you get at restaurants. I never tried duplicating it at home until I found this recipe. It gave me the confidence to simply add whatever struck my fancy to my mashes: toasted garlic, chives, or cheese. Yum!

This recipe only serves 2, but can easily be increased.

Cheese and Mustard Mashed Potatoes
adapted from the Healthy Pregnancy Cookbook

    1 lb potatoes, peeled and cut in large chunks
    6 tbls milk
    1 tbl butter
    2 tsp yellow mustard (or try Dijion!)
    3/4 c. cheddar cheese, grated
    1 tbl fresh parsley, chopped (optional)
    salt and pepper to taste

Place the potatoes in a saucepan and cover them with cold water. Bring the water to a boil and simmer until the potatoes can be pierced with a fork easily.

Drain the water from the saucepan.

Add the remaining ingredients to the potatoes in the saucepan. Mash by hand or use an electric hand mixer to blend and mash the potatoes. For a stronger mustard flavor, add more mustard. I add at least a tablespoon or two, which I of course never measure.

Serve immediately. Yum!

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Morning Nap

Morning Nap

Originally uploaded by Wandering Eyre

Wicket has adjusted well to being in our family. Pullo plays very nicely with her. She on the other hand, jumps up to be level with his face and then swats him with a one-two punch. It is so funny. Wicket can jump very high and she does so with puppy abandon when she is excited.

Gideon is fascinated by her and loves to pet her warm belly. She sleeps on our bed for the moment, but will soon have to graduate to the nice bolster bed I bought her this week.

Wicket is on her second accident free day, so things are little less like a zoo here. She still has to be watched like a hawk. She has discovered that chewing on books is great fun, so I have been keeping a special eye on her.

Wicket is a sweet girl and I am glad she is with us.

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I started with a basic wheat pancake recipe and then added a bunch of goodies to make them super delicious and extra good for you. These are very filling pancakes and a good way to start the day.

Healthy Banana Pancakes

    1 c. unbleached flour
    2/3 c. whole wheat flour
    2 tbls. brown sugar
    2 tbls. wheat germ
    2 tbls. ground flax seed
    3 tsp. baking powder.
    3/4 tsp. salt
    1 2/3 c. milk
    1 tbl. butter, melted
    1 egg, beaten
    3 bananas, mashed

Add all the dry ingredients in a medium bowl and mix together with a whisk.

In a small bowl combine the milk, butter, and egg. Stir to combine.

Add the milk mixture and mashed bananas to the flour mixture. Stir until well combined.

Cook over medium high heat in a greased pan until pancakes are browned on both sides, flipping to cook evenly.

Makes about 9-10 medium sized pancakes.

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Originally uploaded by Wandering Eyre

Meet the newest addition to the Smith Zoo, Wicket, an 8 week old Great Dane. We got her from a local dane rescue group.

So far she is fitting in very nicely. She has some manners to learn and we are working on house training but she is a sweet girl. Gideon is very timid with her, as he is with most smaller dogs, and trying to figure out how to tell her no.

Pullo likes her, though he pretends to be aloof. He needed a big dog friend and she is already very feisty with him.

I am looking forward to being past the puppy stage, which is cute, but a lot of extra work.

Updated: I should add that the name Wicket comes from me listening to too much Slice of SciFi which discussed this character recently in a trivia bit.

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The Smiths recently returned from a week long camping trip in the mountains of Colorado. While we do tent camp, we do not backpack camp. I have a friend that refers to this as “fat camping” because if you are not carrying it around you are fat and lazy. We tent camped with a king size air mattress (yes our tent is that big) and it is a good thing: All four of us slept on it every night, Ries, myself, Gideon, and Pullo (who kept our feet warm in the cold mountain air).

Here we are on our hike on Inter-Laken Trail in Twin Lakes, CO. Notice Pullo’s shoes in the photo.

Trip stats:

    Hours to travel there: 23
    Days it rained: pretty much every one, a shower at least
    Days it rained continuously and we considered leaving altogether: 3
    Generations on the camping trip: 4
    Tents: 2
    Popups and RVs: 2
    Cushy accommodations (aka RVs and popups) slept in by the “Old Folks”: 2
    Miles hiked: 5
    Miles driven during the trip: 3,018
    Spoiled dogs who required their own hiking shoes: 1
    Showers taken: one on Wednesday
    Baths taken by Gideon: 3, one in the fancy RV!
    Peeps harmed and consumed in the Great Campfire Roasting of 2010: 12
    Nights I had to leave the tent to go to the bathroom (outhouse really) and wonder if a bear would eat me: all of them
    Towns visited: Telluride (gondolas!), Mountain Village, Ouray (hot springs!), Leadville
    Hours to travel home: 20

It was a nice trip though it rained constantly the first three days we were in Telluride. We actually left that area Tuesday, after realizing that the rain would not stop and the tents had taken all the moisture they were going to deal with before the rain came inside in buckets. Once in Leadville, where we hooked up with my grandparents, the weather was amazing, with the normal mountain showers and sunshine.

We hiked Inter-Laken trail, a short 5 mile hike to an abandoned resort on Twin Lakes. Pullo wore his saddle bags and new hiking shoes and I think 5 miles is about all he is able to go. He was very pooped at the end of the day. Gideon made it about a third of the way and then was passed around for the rest of the journey.

We ended up in Leadville for their annual Boom Days festival which is a fun weekend of small town festivities, including a pancake breakfast, parade, and mining events.

I loved being in the mountains again. It has been too long since I have been surrounded by my favorite views. Gideon had a wonderful time being dirty all week and being spoiled by Grammy and Oma (whose idea of a morning snack is Green Tea and an Oreo cookie). The day after we got back, he cried and asked to go back to the campsite to Oma.

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