Saturday, July 30, 2011

Momma's Boy

So for the past few weeks when Leo gets tired and wants to nap he will only do so if I am holding him. If Jeff tried to do this part he will start to cry which can very quickly and easily turn into a melt down. And it is getting pretty obnoxious. This means that at night I can't do anything that I want to do or need to do, because I must be holding him and rocking him. And I love to rock him to sleep but sometimes he needs to be okay with his daddy doing it. And this really needs to stop soon so that I am able to do school work at night, otherwise this is not going to be a good semester and I am not going to get much sleep.

But today, I am trying not to get too excited here, he as taken two naps! with Jeff putting him to sleep! So hopefully this stage of only wanting momma all the time has ended. I mean he gets all day with me, he doesn't need all night as well, daddy needs some cuddle time.

But he is such a cute little butt munch, that even when he does this I can't help but wanting to kiss him all over.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

If you like Orange Juice...

This is from Food Renegade, a blog that is all about telling you the truth about the food industry. This post is from today, and I find it very interesting but I am not too surprised. Hope you enjoy...

Do you buy orange juice at the store? If you do, I’m sure you’re careful to buy the kind that’s 100% juice and not made from concentrate. After all, that’s the healthier kind, right? The more natural kind? The kind without any additives? The kind that’s sold in the refrigerator section so it must be almost as good as fresh-squeezed orange juice?

If I’m describing you, then you’re either going to hate me or love me by the time you’re done reading this post. The truth is, that orange juice you feel so good about buying is probably none of those things. You’ve been making assumptions based on logic. The food industry follows its own logic because of the economies of scale. What works for you in your kitchen when making a glass or two of juice simply won’t work when trying to process thousands upon thousands of gallons of the stuff.

Haven’t you ever wondered why every glass of Tropicana Pure Premium orange juice tastes the same, no matter where in the world you buy it or what time of year you’re drinking it in? Or maybe your brand of choice is Minute Maid or Simply Orange or Florida’s Natural. Either way, I can ask the same question. Why is the taste and flavor so consistent?

Generally speaking, beverages that taste consistently the same follow recipes. They’re things like Coca Cola or Pepsi or a Starbucks Frappuccino. When you make orange juice at home, each batch tastes a little different depending on the oranges you made them from. I hope you’re hearing warning bells in your head right about now.

The reason your store bought orange juice is so consistently flavorful has more to do with chemistry than nature.

Making OJ should be pretty simple. Pick oranges. Squeeze them. Put the juice in a carton and voilĂ !

But actually, there is an important stage in between that is an open secret in the OJ industry. After the oranges are squeezed, the juice is stored in giant holding tanks and, critically, the oxygen is removed from them. That essentially allows the liquid to keep (for up to a year) without spoiling– but that liquid that we think of as orange juice tastes nothing like the Tropicana OJ that comes out of the carton. (source)

In fact, it’s quite flavorless. So, the industry uses “flavor packs” to re-flavor the de-oxygenated orange juice:

When the juice is stripped of oxygen it is also stripped of flavor providing chemicals. Juice companies therefore hire flavor and fragrance companies, the same ones that formulate perfumes for Dior and Calvin Klein, to engineer flavor packs to add back to the juice to make it taste fresh. Flavor packs aren’t listed as an ingredient on the label because technically they are derived from orange essence and oil. Yet those in the industry will tell you that the flavor packs, whether made for reconstituted or pasteurized orange juice, resemble nothing found in nature. The packs added to juice earmarked for the North American market tend to contain high amounts of ethyl butyrate, a chemical in the fragrance of fresh squeezed orange juice that, juice companies have discovered, Americans favor. Mexicans and Brazilians have a different palate. Flavor packs fabricated for juice geared to these markets therefore highlight different chemicals, the decanals say, or terpene compounds such as valencine.

The formulas vary to give a brand’s trademark taste. If you’re discerning you may have noticed Minute Maid has a candy like orange flavor. That’s largely due to the flavor pack Coca-Cola has chosen for it. Some companies have even been known to request a flavor pack that mimics the taste of a popular competitor, creating a “hall of mirrors” of flavor packs. Despite the multiple interpretations of a freshly squeezed orange on the market, most flavor packs have a shared source of inspiration: a Florida Valencia orange in spring. (source)

Why aren’t these flavor packs listed as ingredients?

Good question! As with all industrial foods, it’s because of our convoluted labeling laws. You see, these “flavor packs are made from orange by-products — even though these ‘by-products’ are so chemically manipulated that they hardly qualify as ‘by-products’ any more.” (source) Since they’re made from by-products that originated in oranges, they can be added to the orange juice without being considered an “ingredient,” despite the fact that they are chemically altered.
So, what should you do about it?

First off, I must ask: Why are you drinking juice?? Juice removed from the fruit is just concentrated fructose without any of the naturally-occurring fiber, pectin, and other goodies that make eating a whole fruit good for you. Did you know, for example, that it takes 6-8 medium sized apples to make just 1 cup of apple juice? You probably wouldn’t be able to eat 6-8 medium apples in a single setting. (I know I can barely eat one!) But you can casually throw back a cup of apple juice, and you would probably be willing to return for seconds. That’s why fruit juice is dangerous. It’s far too easy to consume far too much sugar.

So, my first piece of advice is to get out of the juice habit altogether. It’s expensive, and it’s not worth it.

My second piece of advice is to only drink juices that you make yourself, and preferably ones that you’ve turned into a healthy, probiotic beverage (like this naturally-fermented lemonade my own family enjoys). Sally Fallon Morrell’s Nourishing Traditions cookbook has several lacto-fermented juice coolers that are pleasant, albeit expensive. (I especially like the Grape Cooler, Raspberry Drink, and Ginger Beer.)

And finally, opt out of the industrial food system as much as you can. If you learn anything at all from this post, it should be that you never know what’s in your food unless you grow it, harvest it, or make it yourself. Second best (and more practical for many, including myself) is to pay somebody I trust to do it — like the farmers at my Farmer’s Market, the cattle rancher I buy my annual grass-fed beef order from, or the chef at my local restaurant who’s willing to transparently answer questions about how he sources ingredients and what goes into the dish I’m ordering.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Slowing Down

Everyday I try to take a moment and slow down and just enjoy my baby. It is hard to do when I feel there are so many things to do in a day, but I am forcing myself to slow down so I am not too upset once he stops being a baby. Once he stops wanting me to hold him all the time or sleep on me for every nap. So I am making sure to slow down and enjoy each day. Because before I know it he won't be a baby anymore! Crazy to think how three months have already flown by. I feel that I have loved every stage so far. I loved it when he was a newborn, and I love it now that he is starting to be more aware, smile more, interact more. I just love my baby really, I think I will continue to like each stage. But a part of me will always want it to be this stage, where he wants/needs me all the time.

This baby is starting to get more and more mobile. Now when he is on his back during play time he will often turn 180 degrees. It is crazy how much he can move. And during this time he is usually chewing on his blanket that is in his hand. And last night when he was doing tummy time, he turned 90 degrees! It is just crazy how quickly he is developing, I don't think I will ever get over it. Soon enough he will be scooting across the floor, and then we are really going to have to childproof. Ugh.

He also likes to look at his mirror, smile at himself and then act shy by hiding his face in the blanket he is laying on, it is really cute to watch. Maybe I will have to try and get a video.

Wordless Wednesday- Flashback and explanation

So I am going to have to add some words to this...
Tonight I talked to a very old and good friend of mine and it reminded me of the many summers in high school and college at his house. Specifically every July 3rd and 4th. The 3rd was his birthday so we would always be there for that, and then the 4th we would be back to blow up lots of stuff. Meaning, we would cram as much as we could into a 5 gallon bucket and then light it on fire and run. As you can see in the photos, the buckets don't make it out to well. I am not really sure how it all started but it was a lot of fun. This year for the 4th we did nothing, but the whole day I was thinking I wish I could do this. So maybe if we plan it well, it can happen again next year. Because my pyro tendencies are burning itching.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Toddle Along Tuesday/ FOOTBALL!

It is Tuesday, which means it is time for the Toddle Along Tuesday blog hop.

So if you are stopping by, Hi!.

And now on to a very serious subject, football. I live for the fall because that means it is football season, and once the Super Bowl I am already looking forward to August for football to start again (I do look forward to the draft but that only last a weekend in April). So as the NFL lockout kept dragging on I kept getting more and more nervous. What is there was no 2011 NFL season? What would I do on Sundays? I know there would still be college football, but that is on Saturday. I need the whole weekend for football, not just Saturday (or Thursday or Monday, when are they just going to make everyday football?).

So today when it was announced that a deal was reached, I was finally able to relax a bit, knowing there will be a season this fall. Although I don't think it will be a great season, it may be a little weird since training camps are not going to start until this week (eek!), and I am afraid a lot of players are going to be out of the loop and getting hurt. I was really hoping the Chiefs would have an even better season than last year (they made it to the playoffs! and won their division!) but who knows how this season will go now. Hopefully between the Chiefs and Packers, one team will have another great season. And we can only hope this will be Peyton Manning's last season, I mean he is getting old.

Here I am at Monday Night Football last year! It was one of the best games I have attended. I am hoping I will be able to make it to another Chiefs game this year, but we will see. And yes, I can only hope Leo will play football when the time comes, if he doesn't that is fine, but it would be so great if he did!


Baby likes his blanket (swaddle blanket that is) and his stuffed giraffe. They are now a must for car travel. I am trying to get him to like the monkey blanket but he loves having a swaddle blanket next to his face when he sleeps. Whatever makes him not cry in the car, like he has been lately, I am okay with.

Sunday, July 24, 2011


My parents were in town for the weekend. I feel like we didn't do much, but I am still exhausted from it. Visitors wear me out. On Saturday we did go to Estes Park for the day and met up with my cousin for lunch. I didn't take any pictures there except for this hummingbird.

We also took a family photo tonight.

And of course a picture with Grandma Patty and Papa.

I feel like summer is escaping me and soon enough I will be having to do school stuff again. Summers always happen too quickly and I never get to do everything I had hoped for. I was just telling Jeff today how awesome it was in high school during the summer. I barely worked and I just hung out with friends most of the time. The same was true for college for the most part, I just was working more hours. Sometimes it is nice to remember those days and mainly nights. I really need to get a porch swing or hammock. Sitting outside at night or when the sun in setting is sooo nice and relaxing. Having a baby changes that but when it happens (which is very infrequent) it is so nice. And camping, I really need to go camping. Too many things and too little time.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Embrace the Camera

I figured I would do this 'blog hop' this week since I have a cute photo of baby and me. So if you interested if finding out what embrace the camera is, go over to the anderson crew and find out.

This is how he likes to be carried in the BabyBjorn now. He likes to hang it with mommy around the house.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

3 Months

Oh my goodness, has it really been three months!? Leo was awesome while taking photos today as you will see shortly. I also took a video and posted it on YouTube.

New things:
Sucking on his to first finger on his left hand. And no Mom, this does not mean he will be left handed.

Grabbing onto toys. Being somewhat interested in them. Actually paying attention to them.

He usually smiles when I start singing to him.

He loves watching ceiling fans, it is the first thing he does every morning. Which means he is usually very happy in the morning.

I still cannot believe that it has been three months, it is crazy how the time has gone by fast most of the time and slow some of the time. But overall it is crazy how much Leo has changed in three months. I can only imagine what he will be like in another three. Goodness.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Toddle Along Tuesday/ Kitty Issues

Welcome if you are from Toddle Along Tuesday!

I think Heath is having some jealously issues. Normally he completely ignores Leo. Sometimes he will sniff at him and then walk away. But lately he has been running away from Leo. If I am headed towards the couch for a feeding and Heath is on the couch, he immediately gets up and runs away. I don't think he likes that this little monster has been screaming so much lately.

I also think Heath has issues with Leo not petting him. Or when I am paying too much attention to Leo, so he proceeds to do this:
I think he is trying to tell me he can be cute too. At night once Leo is asleep we curl up on the couch and read, and that is when Heath gets all the attention and spooning time he needs.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Growth Spurt

This three month growth spurt has made Leo act like an asshole. Maybe that is bad to say but it is the truth. And I know he is just having growing pains, but he was just impossible the past few days. He would start crying while laying on his play mat, so I would pick him up, only for him to start screaming. And then nothing was pacifying him. And then he would be hungry, but he was so upset that he wouldn't eat, which only made the situation worse. It was like he just started to be colicy, but isn't this the age it should stop?

But I found that when he gets like this, laying him in his crib with the mobile on calms him down. And last night after many attempts to get him to eat, he finally calmed down in his crib. And there was no way I was going to stop him from being calm (aka not screaming hysterically) so what did I do?

Yep, I crawled into the crib and got him to eat. Good thing his mommy is small enough that I can fit into the crib.

I feel like I am going crazy, and I am so glad these growth spurts do not occur every month. But I think he is coming out of it, he didn't have a fit tonight, thankfully. I am not looking forward to the next one, but he did grow A LOT! He is a lot longer and his legs are chunkier. I am looking forward to having my happy baby back.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Are you an introvert?

After reading this, both Jeff and I agree we are introverts. Which is probably why we are both happy sitting at home most of the time, with just the three of us.

10 Myths About Introverts

Myth #1 – Introverts don’t like to talk.
This is not true. Introverts just don’t talk unless they have something to say. They hate small talk. Get an introvert talking about something they are interested in, and they won’t shut up for days.

Myth #2 – Introverts are shy.
Shyness has nothing to do with being an Introvert. Introverts are not necessarily afraid of people. What they need is a reason to interact. They don’t interact for the sake of interacting. If you want to talk to an Introvert, just start talking. Don’t worry about being polite.

Myth #3 – Introverts are rude.
Introverts often don’t see a reason for beating around the bush with social pleasantries. They want everyone to just be real and honest. Unfortunately, this is not acceptable in most settings, so Introverts can feel a lot of pressure to fit in, which they find exhausting.

Myth #4 – Introverts don’t like people.
On the contrary, Introverts intensely value the few friends they have. They can count their close friends on one hand. If you are lucky enough for an introvert to consider you a friend, you probably have a loyal ally for life. Once you have earned their respect as being a person of substance, you’re in.

Myth #5 – Introverts don’t like to go out in public.
Nonsense. Introverts just don’t like to go out in public FOR AS LONG. They also like to avoid the complications that are involved in public activities. They take in data and experiences very quickly, and as a result, don’t need to be there for long to “get it.” They’re ready to go home, recharge, and process it all. In fact, recharging is absolutely crucial for Introverts.

Myth #6 – Introverts always want to be alone.
Introverts are perfectly comfortable with their own thoughts. They think a lot. They daydream. They like to have problems to work on, puzzles to solve. But they can also get incredibly lonely if they don’t have anyone to share their discoveries with. They crave an authentic and sincere connection with ONE PERSON at a time.

Myth #7 – Introverts are weird.
Introverts are often individualists. They don’t follow the crowd. They’d prefer to be valued for their novel ways of living. They think for themselves and because of that, they often challenge the norm. They don’t make most decisions based on what is popular or trendy.

Myth #8 – Introverts are aloof nerds.
Introverts are people who primarily look inward, paying close attention to their thoughts and emotions. It’s not that they are incapable of paying attention to what is going on around them, it’s just that their inner world is much more stimulating and rewarding to them.

Myth #9 – Introverts don’t know how to relax and have fun.
Introverts typically relax at home or in nature, not in busy public places. Introverts are not thrill seekers and adrenaline junkies. If there is too much talking and noise going on, they shut down. Their brains are too sensitive to the neurotransmitter called Dopamine. Introverts and Extroverts have different dominant neuro-pathways. Just look it up.

Myth #10 – Introverts can fix themselves and become Extroverts.
A world without Introverts would be a world with few scientists, musicians, artists, poets, filmmakers, doctors, mathematicians, writers, and philosophers. That being said, there are still plenty of techniques an Extrovert can learn in order to interact with Introverts. (Yes, I reversed these two terms on purpose to show you how biased our society is.) Introverts cannot “fix themselves” and deserve respect for their natural temperament and contributions to the human race. In fact, one study (Silverman, 1986) showed that the percentage of Introverts increases with IQ.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Leo Updates

This little baby is sure getting big!

He is holding his head up quite well, not fully stable but definitely improving. He can now face out in the BabyBjorn and keep his head steady. He really likes to be in this position now or be held out like that. He likes to look around the room and see what you see.

He is smiling quite often now. He sometimes will smile in the middle of eating. He pulls off just to look up and smile. He also likes it when you are a complete goof. He will smile if you meow, laugh in a weird way, say "Ho Ho Ho" in a deep voice, anything that is on the border of you losing your dignity. But I would do anything for a smile.

He is also starting to push pressure on his legs when you stand him up. He is really big on kicking his legs and moving his arms fast when he is laying on his play mat. Sometimes he will grab one of his toys that hangs above him. He will also smile at the toys hanging above him.

He likes looking at mirrors now too.

I can't believe he is almost three months! Time is going fast and he is starting to develop quickly. I am just glad I am able to stay home with him and watch all the development.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Toddle Along Tuesday/ School Update

Welcome if you are new reader from the Follow Along Tuesday blog hop! Hope you enjoy your stay!

So school... I feel like it has been years since I was in class and thinking academically. But really it was just three months ago. I use to not be able to remember times before I was pregnant and now I am struggling to remember times pre-baby.

Summer is slowly ending and I am needing to get into the school mind set, I mean I only have two semester left and I have this measly thesis to write. And I am terrified. And the fear of actually having to write it is making me not think about it at all. Which is bad, really bad.

So this past week I have forced myself to actually think about it, remember how I said I can't remember anything pre-baby. I struggled to remember the last meeting I had with my adviser and what my thesis was going to focus on (not only could I not remember I couldn't even find my notes about it). Umm, that's not good, but finally I did remember. So now I need to actually start some basic research that I should have been doing these past three months. But how am I suppose to do that when I have a cute baby to cuddle with? This is why I am terrified of writing this thing, I am already doubting myself. And I don't believe I can finish it, when I can, I will, I must, but this voice in my head is really not helping the situation.

So the thesis, what is it actually going to be about? It has taken a year to whittle down to a tangible subject, that I can actually research and address. I have these lofty ideas and plans and then realize they are so much more than a thesis. And all these ideas stem back to the food system and food politics. I am a little obsessed with the current food system and all its wrong doings. And there is so much I could talk about and rant about. I am too passionate about too many topics within this broad subject which is why I was having such a hard time deciding on a thesis topic. Really I just had to get over it and decide on something and stick with it, so that I can finish this thing by next April.

So... I am going to research food deserts in Denver. "A food desert is any area in the industrialised world where healthy, affordable food is difficult to obtain. It is prevalent in rural as well as urban areas and is most prevalent in low-socioeconomic minority communities, and is associated with a variety of diet-related health problems.[1] Food deserts are also linked with supermarket shortage."

To do this I plan to use some GIS (a thing I somewhat loath) and show land use changes over time in Denver, in hopes that it will show how markets have become less accessible over time. Meaning, most of the population in Denver does not have a market, grocery store, etc they can easily walk to. Because lets face it, not everyone has a car or easy access to public transportation.

So, there is my long and wordy update about school, I will try and post more about it as I continue to research more.

Sunday, July 10, 2011


We recently invested in a hair clipper for Jeff and for future Leo haircuts. Jeff said he would not pay for another haircut, so if I wanted him to get rid of the long hair we would have to buy some clippers.
So yesterday was the big day for Jeff. And it was my first time giving a haircut, I was a bit nervous but I knew if it turned out too bad I could just do a buzz cut.

Here is the before picture:

And here is the after:

I am so glad that hair is gone! It was really starting to drive me crazy. And I don't think I did too bad of job. It was a learning experience for sure but I am sure I will get better with the many haircuts to come.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Rigatoni with Sausage, Peas and Fresh Ricotta

Jeff claims this is one of the best pasta dishes we have ever made.
I think it is up there. But I have become a huge fennel fan, meaning I love sausage.

Serves 6

2 large cans whole San Marzano tomatoes
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 bay leaf (pref fresh)
1 cup diced fresh fennel (reserve the fronds for garnish)
4 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
1/2 tablespoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 pound sweet or hot (or both) Italian sausage with fennel seeds
1/2 cup defrosted petit pois (small peas)
1 pound rigatoni (large ridges)
1 pint fresh ricotta
1/4 pound ricotta salata

Run the tomatoes through a food mill and discard the peels and seeds. (You can puree them in a blender or food processor if you don't have a mill.)

Heat the olive oil gently in a large heavy saucepan over medium low heat. Add the bay leaf, fennel, garlic and red pepper flakes (for a milder sauce, you can add these at the end). Season with salt and pepper and saute until the fennel is soft and ever so slightly brown at the edges.

Add the tomatoes, stir, and lower the heat to low. Cook gently, stirring every so often, for 2 hours. Ask a question about this step.

If you have a grill or grill pan, grill the sausages whole, then slice into 1/2-inch rounds. Alternatively, you can rub them with a bit of olive oil and roast in the oven on a sheet tray at 400 for 10 to 12 minutes, and then slice into rounds.

When the sauce is reduced, cook the pasta according to the package directions (but probably you should add the pasta to rapidly boiling, highly salted water; then once it comes back up to a boil, cook for 8 to 10 minutes). Retain 1 cup of pasta water and drain the pasta.

Pour two-thirds of the sauce into a large saute pan, add the sausage and heat through over medium heat.

Add the warm pasta to the sauce, plus about 1/2 cup of pasta water (more if you think you need it). Saute, turning with tongs and shaking the pan until the sauce has been absorbed into the pasta. Add the peas at the last minute.

Serve with a HEAPING dollop of cold ricotta cheese and shavings of ricotta salata. Garnish with fennel fronds.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Growing Up

It is suppose to be a good thing that babies grow up, but I am not liking it. I want him to stay my baby that cuddles with me and needs me to go to sleep. On Wednesday morning, I laid Leo down in his crib with his mobile on while I got ready. I was thinking we would go for a walk and he could nap during the walk. Well, when I went back into his room he was so close to falling asleep, I just rubbed his back until he closed his eyes (when all I wanted to do was pick him up and rock him).

This is suppose to be a good thing, I know, but I couldn't help but cry. He is growing up already and learning to sleep on his own. I know I should be celebrating but I would rather have him sleep on me, I would rather rock him to sleep every night (good thing that is still happening), I would rather hold him all the time (but I know this is not good).

Why does growing up have to be so hard?

And the thought of having to leave him for a couple of hours a day once I go back to school is down right scary. Anxiety is starting to creep into my mind. I can't imagine have to spend that much time away from him. I don't know how I am going to handle it.

I mean how can you leave this face?

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Toddle Along Tuesday/ Home

Welcome if you are from Toddle Along Tuesday! Hope you enjoy the blog.

Sorry for the lack of posting lately, we had Jeff's family in town. We have been around a lot of family in the past month. It is a lot to handle when I am just use to the three of us and the occasional family visitor. But we now have a break for a couple of weeks, thankfully.

I haven't really been able to write much about when we went to Table Rock Lake, but I would like to say I consider this my home away from home.

I don't consider Lee's Summit my home anymore, it is just were family lives. But the lake, is my home. I love going there. I was really excited to go on a real boat ride this year. If I didn't have little baby with me I would have laid down on the floor and fallen asleep, like I did so often as a kid. I love the lake because it reminds me of my grandpa, and all the memories of being a kid at his lake house. I love just floating with a life jacket in the lake, it is so relaxing. It is one of the times I feel fully relaxed. I wish I could go there more often but once a year is nice. If I was ever to move back to Missouri, which I think there is probably a 1% chance of that happening, it would have to be to Table Rock Lake. The idea of looking out a window a seeing the lake is wonderful.

Hopefully someday I can live on a lake in Colorado, that would be very nice as well. I think you could consider me a true Lake Rat, and I am hoping little baby will be one as he grows up. The idea of him running on the dock to jump into the water excites me. I hope he takes from me and loves water and the lake, which is the opposite of his daddy. We will have to see.