Thursday, July 8, 2010

An open letter of apology to my parents

I love my kids. I love them to pieces, but that doesn't mean they don't try my patience and my sanity on a daily basis.

Especially the kidlet. I think her personality is a little too similar to mine. She is strong-willed, stubborn, independent and silly.

See, goofy, goofy girl.

She can go from this:
to this:
in about .03 seconds flat.

(Oh the stink eye. I remember that well. In fact, I think we have many pictures of me giving the stink eye when I'm about the kidlet's age.)

This kid, she's going to give me gray hair, I just know it.

Today, she sat on the steps in our house for five minutes putting on shoes so we could leave to go to daycare. The "conversation" went something like this (and I put conversation in quotes, because there's only so much conversing you do with a 21-month-old who can't verbalize what she's thinking).

Me: Kidlet, do you want to go outside?
Kidlet: Yeah.
Me: Then we need to put on socks and shoes.
Kidlet: No.
Me; Kidlet, do you want to go outside?
Kidlet: (while attempting to put her shoes on - backwards on the wrong foot) Yeah.... (looks up at me with the shoe half on) I did it!!!
Me: Yes you did. Now let's get socks on.
Kidlet: No.

Wash, rinse, repeat. I finally got her socks and shoes on and we went on our merry way, but not without much protest, tears and "NO. I DO IT!" from her.

I'm sorry mom. I finally understand all those times you threatened to make me walk home or said if I kept pouting, my face would get stuck that way.

She's a joy and a delight, but, phew! I fear for the teenage years.

Monday, July 5, 2010

The best chocolate chip cookies in the world

Is there anything better than a homemade chocolate chip cookie, fresh out of the oven? I don't think so.

Unfortunately, not all chocolate chip cookie recipes are created equal. Some make cookies that are too crispy. Some end up too chewy. Some don't have nearly enough chocolate chips in them (a tragedy!)

However, I think I finally found the chocolate chip cookie recipe I can count on.

It's another adapted recipe from the ever useful small town church cookbook.

And it makes the perfect cookie:
Perfect golden brown, loaded with chocolate chips and pecans (optional, of course) and just the right combination of crunchy/chewy. I made these yesterday for our 4th of July supper, and they're almost all gone. I have definitely eaten my fair share today, maybe more.

The Best Chocolate Chip Cookie in the World
1 c. (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 c. sugar
1 c. brown sugar
2 eggs
2 t. vanilla
3 1/2 c. flour
2 t. soda
1 t. salt
1 package chocolate chip (I prefer milk chocolate)
1 c. chopped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350. Mix together butter and sugars until well combined. Add eggs and vanilla. In separate bowl, stir together flour, soda and salt. Add to butter mixture until well combined. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts (if desired). Drop by spoonful on to baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake for 10 minutes, or until just lightly golden brown.

I love that the recipe is basic. It just uses the good stuff: butter, sugar, eggs, flour, soda, salt, etc... There's no oil or crisco or anything (not that those don't make good chocolate chip cookies). The hub *might* say that the chocolate chip to dough ratio is a tad high, but you'll never hear me complain that there's too much chocolate in anything. You can reduce the amount of chocolate chips to 1 cup, though, to cut back on that.

I would go have another one, but I've already had six or seven (or eight, I quit keeping track a while ago) today.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Curly Girly

The kidlet was blessed with beautiful, curly, bright red hair.

Even if it has grown into a rather unsightly curly mullet at the present.

Unfortunately, she was also blessed (saddled?) with a mother who has pin-straight, fine, boring mousy brown hair and hasn't the faintest idea how to deal with a Little Orphan Annie-esque mop.

These adorable ringlets are murder to try and comb out. Thankfully, I have some internet friends who either have curly hair themselves, or have daughters with curly hair, who have given me tips. Tips like I don't have to wash it every time she takes a bath. And combing is essential, especially right before bedtime, lest it turn into a complete birds nest during the night (it usually does). And if it has turned into a complete birds nest, a little spray conditioner, water and scrunching will bring the curls back to shape (and if that doesn't work, the humid summer air will!)

I know in 10 years she'll whine and complain and wish she was born with anything but gorgeous, bright red, curly hair (and if it's anything like the hub's, extremely thick as well) but for now, I'm going to enjoy it - even if it is torture for us both to comb it out.