Month: June 2011

My Baby is Four Years Old now!

Quentin turned 4 yesterday. He had a nice time, really liked his presents. He’s getting so big. He’s still the youngest though. He has more “baby traits” than the previous three did at this point, which isn’t precisely birth order, more personality. His older brother, Asa, was the baby at that age, has a different personality than Quentin for sure. He was “the baby” for nearly 7 years.

Quentin is demonstrative with love, thanks, etc. Yesterday was filled with hugs, kisses, and all that goes with that, for presents, the day, and how it ended … some little fireworks I got him at Target for last surprise presents. He’s just like that, was from the start. He’s very comfort oriented, when he’s comfortable, he’s happy, and overflowing with love, joy, enthusiasm. (which means there is more to him, what happens when he’s not comfortable … eek!)

The other three children are all different, but one thing in common, not demonstrative like Q. Not at all. That’s more like me. Q is the first one to be a hugger, wanting hugs, giving hugs, forcing me to “like” it with him. I am not a hugger.

I snuggle all my babies, that I can do. I’m not a hugger past that.

Any how, one thing we got for Q is a Cars 2 branded Leapster Explorer — we got him a Leapster 2 last year, but never bought any thing but 1 cartridge, and that cartridge lost a piece of it’s stuff, it’s stuck in the slot of the machine. And it was limited and who cares. So we got the Explorer, which was out just as or just after we got the Leapster 2 last year. Now this year, we got the Explorer, and they are releasing a new thing in the next month, a tablet sort of thing, LeapPad.

Q querying Cars 2 Explorer game box, Asa looking on with weird face

Now it seems that the Leapster Explorer and that tablet can use the same cartridges, since one of the games we bought for this birthday had such verbage on the box (works with both.) Which was my heads-up to a new device launching. He likes the Explorer though. It’s better than the Leapster 2, by far. Easier to hold, red and white, nice screen, more than just a couple things to do with it.

I love the newer cartridges. If I’d known what they were like before … Oh well.

Red Pepper Sausage Skillet Meal

1 Red Pepper, sliced into 1/4″ strips (or more, as desired)

1/2 Vidalia Onion, sliced thin into 1 1/2″-long strips (or more, as desired)

2 Tablespoons Butter, plus enough Olive Oil to fry the onions & red peppers

2 Tablespoons Tamari Sauce (or Soy Sauce)

Tabasco Sauce, to taste

1 small can diced tomatoes (like Muir Glen Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes)

Fully Cooked Sausage, bias cut (angle) into rounds or diced, if desired (beef, pork, chicken)

Partially cooked noodles (your choice of noodle style) – about halfway cooked.

In a hot fry pan melt the butter and add enough olive oil for the onions and peppers, stir frequently until onions begin to carmelize.

Add the partially cooked noodles, Tabasco Sauce, mixing well.

Add sausage, tamari sauce and tomatoes, stirring through.

If you prefer more moisture or sauce, add some of the pasta water as well.

Heat and serve.

If you want a thicker sauce, use arrowroot powder mixed with water (same power as flour thickening, or corn starch, works like that, but isn’t wheat, nor corn. Has a clear thickening like corn starch, full power when comes to boil.)

Recipe created by Maisy 2005

Mockingbird, Mockingbird

Yesterday evening I went outside to see what there was to see. The temperature had gone down and it was rather lovely in the backyard. Our outdoor cats followed me from the front steps to the side and backyard.

I sat on the picnic table and noticed a pair of Norther Mockingbirds actively doing something. For awhile they would fly to the back of the fence, sit there, fly to the front of the fence, near where I was, chirp, fly to the roof of the house next door, back to my fence, to that tree, to another tree, to the fence, flying to the ground here and there to peck, on and on. Early on the one Mockingbird was holding something in it’s beak, grub like. Fat. Didn’t keep it from chirping away, it was funny watching it, never eating it, never dropping it, never going into a tree to a nest to feed young, just flying around with it.

My children streamed out eventually and I was sharing my watchings with my daughter mostly. We dubbed the grub Mockingbird the female, and the other one the Male. The male Mockingbird would root around on the ground and find something small, fly around with it, then go over that routine again and again, seemingly he lost it, or ate it, as he was never out of full view, never went to a nest.

After a bit it was obvious that they wanted something to change. We were sitting there, many feet away from where ever their desire was. Eventually though, the male Mockingbird lived up to his name and started chastising a cat nearby. Chatter, scolding, then every so oven, swooping down … fly by’s, really close. Really close.

Different cats were around, and they mostly all got into the fun. (well, not fun, more for us that them) One cat was happy to partake in the affair. Spooky, the cat that showed up last year, tried to make him a house cat. He’s so cool, calm, big, handsome, truly a panther at heart. House living wasn’t his thing, so we let him back out to his preference. So he would sit over where the Mockingbird was patrolling, get the Mockingbird really upset. Time and again it’d swoop down, nipping the cat on the tail, back, etc.

Sometimes the cat, in fine form, would spring up swipe a paw at the bird, always catching just air. Most of the time he was cool and collected. His swiping moves, were more of the same.

He was under some old dead brush for awhile, depending on where in that stuff he was, he got Mockingbird attention or not. Other cats walked around and got the Mockingbird overexited and when they got the fly-by’s they ran for the hills. Only Spooky stayed firm.

It’s a mystery if he ever catches any. Somebody does, every once in a while. We have a great mass of Mockingbirds here. I don’t want our cats to eat them all, a few is ok, I’ve learned to live with it.

They get mice and rats too. THAT is awesome. So some Mockingbird fun. Just that, fun, training. Enjoyable to the audience.

I wrote about the HVAC here on my other blog yesterday.

HVAC Countdown

One more day, after today, to get through, then it’s HVAC start up! I hate “wishing time away” I so hate it. I’m so familiar with it. More than I even want to think about. Anyhow, here we are a few days after having 4 guys (seemed like a ton of people!) traipsing through and then giving us quotes. It’s been hot, even hotter than hot.

We haven’t had good air in this house ever. What we did have only worked for 6 years, maybe, then started having problems. Did we ever have it overhauled, or have it gone over to fix anything? No. It had no maintenance all along (maybe recharged once years ago.)

So we are getting a Trane, 3-zone system. More thermostats, more returns, more vents. Hopefully it’ll go well. The thing is we have lots of drywall to fix and install still. This job of installing the HVAC may enlarge the drywall job. But that’s OK. Air is important. For me it’s very important! I’m not so special. I think it would be important to any human or animal. Like right now, the air is thick and blah, I feel like I can barely breathe. That’s what my main house has been like for year after year, after year. For a long time the upstairs bedrooms were moreso the cool rooms. I’m just waiting to see what happens, I like fresh cool dry air all the time, I don’t like it cycling on and off and pretty much run the ‘fan’ all the time. I don’t know what the zones will be like, and how it’ll work out. Maybe we’ll have cool air in the cathedral ceiling living room, not get baked out of the kitchen. Huh.

So this morning the countdown is at 3. Tomorrow it’ll 2, and Wednesday it will be 1. And whenever they get here … Blast Off!

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