Wednesday, October 31, 2007


We had great plans to make Julia into something a little more feminine for Halloween this year. Daddy would make a cute princess outfit or something. There would be pink and fluff....or something. That was the plan until we found this skunk suit at half price. It was just too fitting to pass up. She is such a little stink bomb. It was meant to be. Besides, Julia loved her skunk suit. She wore it willingly and danced around the living room after we put it on.

We went trick-or-treating with Julia and she lasted over an hour! We actually ended up coming home because Mommy and Daddy were freezing. Julia, on the other hand, just kept shrieking, "Treeeeeeeeeat!!! Haweeeeeeeen!!!" And shaking her arms vigorously. I think Julia deserves an award for "most holiday spirit" this Halloween. It was pretty much the best evening of her life, thus far. Not bad for eighteen months....Mommy and stinky baby
Julia and Sawyer, our little neighbor boy. We went trick or treating with him and his twin brother, Aidan, for about twenty minutes before they got sick of it.

Julia likes to steal Sawyer's toys....and he doesn't really fight back. Quite the relationship if you ask me! In this photo, you can see Julia contemplating how she is going to steal that baby bottle from his clutches.
and yes....she did.

I think we have more pictures of the back of her than the front. A skunk waddling down the street. Julia didn't want to be carried.
We were trick-or-treating with Aidan and Sawyer, the twin boys that are Julia's age who live next door. Julia was always first on the doorstep...except she just wanted to explore other people's houses. She would walk right past the candy bowl and waltz into the living room of the unsuspecting candy-givers. I got a nice look at the inside of a lot of our neighbor's houses...
Julia and Daddy cut into the pumpkin.... Five points for mommy and daddy! Notice that Daddy has a butcher knife....and Julia has a spoon!
Ew! Pumpkin guts.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Weekend trip!

A weekend away! This past weekend, I attended a dermatology conference in Brainerd. Julia came with and daddy stayed home to work on a project. I met up with Grandma Beth and Auntie Annie and we spent the weekend in a cabin. There was also a pool with a waterslide. There wasn't a lifeguard on duty, so Julia and I went down the slide over and over again. I had to chase her up the stairs because she would actually get on the slide and attempt to slide away without me if she could. One time, I caught her in the nick of time. She was sitting at the top and pushing off.....I can just see it now: "Eighteen month old child flies off of waterslide and lands in hot tub. Mother is incarcerated for negligent parenting...." Needless to say, there were no pictures taken. We were there for 2 1/2 hours and looked like prunes when we left the pool.

In the cabin, Julia and I got the upstairs area and there were these two tiny little closets that Julia LOVED. The doors were barely three feet high. I didn't know they made tiny little doors. Julia made us knock before we could come into her little baby lair. I wish we had these at our house!
Julia slept on a mattress on the floor. She liked her huge bed.
This is what Daddy does when the ladies are away. He built a "train station" out of Julia's blocks. I think we need to get Daddy some legos.... By the way, the train station lasted eight seconds after I snapped this picture. A little monster came and tore it to shreds....

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Just looking through our most recent photos, I noticed a trend. We have a lot of random pictures of our child....eating. Here is a small selection:

1. At the Olive garden, eating right out of the big salad bowl with Mama (everybody else got the never ending pasta bowl. Julia and I had a never ending salad which was quite fun indeed.) Notice the napkin/straight jacket....2. Eating some spaghetti creation at home (mommy and daddy look TIRED.)
3. CORN! Julia's favorite. She is trying to decide if she should eat the whole cob or just the corn part.
4. My favorite: homemade chocolate pudding. Shortly after this, Julia put the dish on her head, but Papa was having an M.I., so I had to stop her instead of taking a picture. I can't afford to lose him at such a young age..... ;)

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Visitors from St. Cloud

This weekend, we had visitors from St. Cloud. Mike's entire family made the trip to Duluth for a visit. It was nice to see them!! Before John, Jenny, and Tim left, we headed to Famous Dave's for some ribs to celebrate Tim's birthday. Julia gnawed on the ribs like she was a wild dog. She growled, gnashed her terrible teeth, rolled her terrible eyes, and showed her terrible claws. (Sound familliar? :)

CORN!!!!! EEEEEEE!!! Julia's favorite. She chewed through two cobs.mommy and her ribs (and a paper towel tucked into her shirt)
Tim's birthday sundae: Julia and Dave helped her eat it up... (This is moments before she dropped a gooey lump of sundae on Timmy's lap.)

Random picture of Julia modeling her leopard print jacket....

Sunday, October 14, 2007

A saturday!

Yesterday was a great day. Julia and I spent the morning at Hartley Nature Center, where we went a bit "off the beaten path" and did some hiking. We also did a tiny bit of swimming, but I was too ashamed to take pictures of my daughter wading in the lake in October. Let's just say a great time was had by all. After that, it was home for a nap and then our ceremonial monthly $100 trip to Target. All in all a good day. It was so good, in fact, that we decided to have supper at McDonald's. I kid you not: Julia ate one and one half double cheeseburgers. Whoa.

While we were out walking, Julia decided she wanted to study soils. Although you may think she did, she did not fall down, she laid down on purpose and played in the dirt/soil. She also examined the grade of the gravel and threw some rocks off the path that were obviously "not acceptable."
Here, my nature guide explains why the moss grows on the north side of tress.... She also recommended that I find myself a walking stick.

Ahhh...the monthly trip to target. Julia rode on Daddy's shoulders because the cart was too full to carry her. This time it was diapers, Halloween candy, cleaning supplies, and groceries. I wish we had a super target...then I could save a trip to the grocery store.

Notice the static electricity around J's head.....

Monday, October 8, 2007

Apple Pie

Yesterday, our family baked a pie. An apple pie, in fact. An American tradition.......

It started out with Mommy's good intentions: I must clean out the fridge.... for it is stinky. In the fridge were seven apples, a few of whom had been there for at least three weeks. What better use than to make a pie?

So, Mommy began to chop the apples, when suddenly a little short and tiny, yet very demanding little girl pulled on her pant leg in the kitchen: Mama...up...see-it....doing?...doing?...doing? The little girl stood up on her high chair and, armed with a red plastic Betty Crocker spoon, began to "mix it" and stir the large bowl of apples. Of course, when a toddler stirs things, she doesn't stir like a Mommy would. Since Mommies have to clean messes, they try to keep the mixing in the confines of the bowl. Not so for a Julia. As quickly as Mommy could put the apples in the bowl, Julia "mixed" them out. New task!

Mommy handed Julia the cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg to add to the apples (note: another of julia's favorite words: "shake it.") So, Julia "shook it" into the apple mix. First a few shakes of cinnamon, then the nutmeg.....and then the cloves. Julia loves cloves. I didn't know that until yesterday when she added the rest of the container to our little pie. She shook it violently at first, and when I tried to take it away from her, she shouted, "NO NO NO NO NO" and ripped the top off of the shaker. Soon the apple pieces were bathed in a pile of cloves. Our kitchen's sure gonna smell...thought mommy...

Then onto the crust: I'm not sure about you, but I just wasn't made to make pie crust. Pie crusts were meant to be made by the meticulous types....not the "cook with reckless abandon" types. I consider myself a fairly good cook. Sometimes I glance at a recipe for an idea, but usually I just throw together what's around and it turns out pretty good. I hate recipes. Actually I think I have this complex against recipe-following. How could this recipe in this cookbook be the best way to make this dinner with the exact ingredients I have? Impossible! I think it's a Riesgraf trait. Rules are meant as guidelines. Follow them if you can't think for yourself. :) Pie crust is not so. When Betty Crocker says "five tablespoons plus one pinch" of water for her pie crust, SHE MEANS IT.

This leads me to my next paragraph. I mixed what I thought would be a very delicious pie crust. A dump of flour, a shake of salt, and a wad of Crisco. Vola! NO! My dough wasn't pretty. Julia kept tasting it and sticking her hands in the flour. (side note: toddler + flour = stupid mommy) I can't remember the last time I was so frustrated doing something. The dough wouldn't stick to itself...only to the countertop and Julia's newly-washed hair. By the time my husband found me, I was on this side of going postal. Thank God, I married a Pharmacist. They follow recipes for a living! God knows what we need....and yesterday I needed a pharmacist to make my pie crust.

After Mike fixed my little semi-sticky creation with whole wheat flour (we ran out of white....this is one healthy pie), he made a beautiful apple pie and even cut little teardrop shapes in the top. As he was putting it into the oven, I was on the phone with the pizza place. There is no way I was about to try and make supper. The pie took us almost three hours to make. ...and that doesn't include cleaning up the wallpaper paste concoction that Julia made on the kitchen floor with her spit and the flour that was everywhere.....

Next time, I think we'll do what most moms these days do: go to Cub and buy a Pie. They should cost at least fifty dollars for all the bloody work you have to put into them. I checked the prices today: $3.99???!?!?!? are you kidding me? At that price, I should buy ten! ....except that we have our own pie at home....and it smells curiously like a clove factory..... :)

(sorry no pictures today. Our digital camera was not thrilled about the flour stayed in the case.)

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Auntie Annie is back!

Ham face
Annie and Julia are enjoying our new giant tupperware. Annie is displaying the warning sticker inside the lid..... if you take a closer look, it specifically states that you should NOT sit your baby down inside the tupperware. We are so naughty!WHEEE! TupperWare Riding!

Psymuhn is lamenting that he doesn't get to slide around in a big tupperware, too!

Mommy and Julia...both wearing brown. We were just about to leave for the doctor's office. Let me explain....

Julia has been having some high fevers for the past few weeks. Well, actually, it started last June when she got a cold. After a few days, we decided she was miserable and must have an ear infection (yes, I looked...ear drums red). SO, we did 10 days of Augmentin, courtesy of a phone prescription to the Pamida pharmacy from Dr/Grandma Beth. Augmentin is an antibiotic that whallops infections (you usually aren't started on augmentin when you have a first-time infection...they usually start you with a wussie antibiotic first...and then work up to Augmentin....) Anyways, we gave her the Augmentin in June and she was better for about a month....and then she started getting sick again, so back to the drug closet with us. Lucky for us, when we called Grandma Beth the first time, she gave us a double dose of we just reconstituted the Augmentin powder that we found in our linen closet. Fantastic, right!?!?

Well, then, about a day after we finished Augmentin #2, Julia was sent home from daycare with a fever of 102. Oh dear. She spiked a few more of these little fever blasts over the next week, so we took her in to SEE a doctor....and he gave us MORE antibiotics, this time it was Omnicef. It makes me think of OmNipotent! It must be good. Well, it was. Smooth sailing for another ten days. Then, the day we quit that, it was back to the 102 fevers and getting kicked out of daycare....

That brings me to yesterday, when I took Julia to the doctor again. We now have another antibiotic (this one is Keflex) and an appointment to see the ENT guy in a few weeks. I have a feeling ear tubes might be in Julia's future. Either that, or she keeps picking up new exciting viruses from daycare. Come to think of it, I feel like crap. Perhaps these random fevers and chills and body aches are not a mere coincidence...perhaps they are another gift from the J.