Tuesday, September 23, 2008

On top of everything else...

Ruth has her first cold. She is pretty congested and sounds like a old man when she sleeps.

I took her to the pediatrician yesterday since she'd been fussy (Saturday and Sunday) and slightly feverish (Sunday only). A look in her ears revealed one infected side (the left) and one inflamed, possibly infected side (the right, obviously). She's on amoxicillin for the next 10 days.

We are also supposed to give her saline nose drops and then use the syringe bulb to loosen her congestion. This is much, much, much easier said than done. We've done it a few times but she hates the syringe bulb with a passion and it really takes two people -- one to hold, one to administer the drops/suction.

But, in good news, she's 15 lbs. 7 oz. She's gained very nearly one pound since her last appointment on August 27. We also got the OK to feed her things besides infant cereal (rice or oatmeal) if we like. We can give her cooked apples, pears, apricots, peaches, and plums. For veggies we can give cooked green beans, carrots, peas, pumpkin or other yellow/orange squash and sweet potato. Uncooked, she can have mashed bananas and avocado.

Once she's recovered from her cold/ear infection, we'll try out some of the new foods.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Bad News

Last night, someone broke in and stole a bunch of our stuff. Everyone is fine, if a little rattled (we were home, but asleep). Unfortunately, among the things stolen were my laptop and my backup hard drive and the digital camera, so all the high-res copies of photos of Ruth are gone. The versions posted to the blog here are all we've got. A couple photos of M nursing Ruth that weren't really appropriate for the internet, but that I really liked, are also gone forever.

On the plus side, the seals on all my chutney held.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Day 158 - Canning! (3)

Taking the jars out of the water bath.

The finished product. It'll be 24 hours before I can check the seals and see if I did this right. Cross your fingers.

Next up: green tomato relish (probably Tuesday, assuming I didn't f*ck up the seals on this batch and need to go back to the drawing board). Then I need to decide what to do with the rest of the peaches we got (there's already a pie and some Afghan-style pickled peaches in the fridge). I'll probably put up at least one batch of honey-spice peaches for the winter.

Hey, guess what everyone is getting for holiday presents...
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Day 158 - Canning! (2)

Ruth makes her appearance! She was feeling a little under the weather today, so only helped for a little while.

One 21-quart hot water canner, suitable for up to six quart jars, or one baby. "Mom, why did you put me in this thing? Why is daddy getting clean jars ready?"

"Oh, OK, it's just so you can have a silly picture." This one is being added to my list of pictures to show her first boyfriend/girlfriend when s/he stops by the house.

Dad hard at work filling jars. The chutney didn't thicken up as much as I'd have liked. It's hard to tell whether it's a genuine problem, or just because it was hot. We'll see when we try some. Working here, with the water baths for the jars and the lids going, plus the canner burbling away, felt like a mad scientist's laboratory.

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Day 158 - Canning! (1)

Gathering materials - the mason jars I washed last night (there're two more flats of pint jars and one of quart jars in the dining room)

I'm gonna peel you little peaches. Melissa loves peaches, so I thought for my first canning project I'd try putting up some peach chutney. Even my stockpot isn't quite big enough to keep boiling when you dump 20 peaches in, so M and I had to resort to using knives and peelers, even after shocking them.

Phew. This is what 20 peaches, roughly chopped, looks like.

Prep. The jars need to be kept in a 180 degree water bath while you're working, or they'll crack.

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Saturday, September 20, 2008


This is what $18 of peaches looks like, from our farmer's market. I think they were underpriced - the guy selling them didn't really know how much there was in the box, but I could only curl it with effort, which means it's at least somewhere in the neighborhood of 25-30#.

What could Daniel possibly be planning with such a tremendous amount of peaches? What could his nefarious plan be? Will it involve cute pictures of Ruth?

Stay tuned!
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Sunday, September 14, 2008


Day 151 - Oatmeal mush. Step 1: grind oatmeal in spice grinder. Step 2: boil water. Step 3: whisk oatmeal into water. Step 4: keep whisking. Step 5: keep whisking. Step 6: is it gluey yet? - if no, go to step 5. Step 7: mix in breast milk. Step 8: put in "unspillable" bowl. Step 9: feed baby. Step 10: make airplane noises. Step 11: feed baby. Step 12: wipe up. Step 13: wipe up. Step 14: wipe up. Step 15: did you actually eat any of that?
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Friday, September 12, 2008

More Cuteness!

Day 145 - Sitting up! She likes hanging out in the bebepod.

Day 149 - The camera, give it to me.

Day 149 - Frogmobile!!
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Day ?? - Green crab spider. With the beginning of the school year, I've been pretty crunched, so we're falling behind in the updates a bit. But! Ruth continues to be cute (and you should go listen to the interview with Great-Grammy Levine), don't worry. The first is another cool thing we saw in the garden. Ruth likes to go and grab leaves on her tree. But a couple weeks ago, Melissa and Ruth found this cute little gal, a green crab spider. She looks exactly like a piece of corn with legs.

Day ?? - I like the sort of M.C. Escher effect. In the background, you can see the neat Gerber daisies that Melissa got me to mark the first day of school.
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