school clothes, a date, a Miner party, and my new steam cleaner does it all

Mary has been waking up at 4:30am a couple times a week recently. I have conflicted feelings about this. I miss not sleeping through the night, but I absolutely adore cuddling with Mary. Last night after I rocked her, I was so awake I couldn’t fall back asleep. Finally at 7 am I leaped out of bed to get a head start on the day.

I raced to the market and Tony Caputo’s for produce and cheese, then headed home to pick up the girls. Abe had an Elder’s Quorum move this morning, so I took the girls to get Lydia some more school clothes and her new preschool uniform (which she has to wear every Tuesday).

They were best buddies in the car.

They were best buddies in the car. We spent a ton of time driving around, and we talked and bonded the whole time. I sometimes tune Lydia’s talking out, but today I determined not to do that–and it was great! We had a lot of fun.

At the mall. The girls raced around and had a lot of fun together.

At the mall. The girls raced around and had a lot of fun together.

After that outing, we drove home, ate lunch, and took naps.

When we woke up, Suzanne came over to pick the girls up for a Miner family party.

aug23pic7 aug23pic6 aug23pic4 aug23pic3 aug23pic2 aug23pic1 aug23In the meantime, Abe and I went on a date with an Amazon Local deal to one of our favorite restaurants.

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Ichiban Sushi. We love this place.

Ichiban Sushi. We love this place.

Then we bought Lydia more clothes, because honestly, she is growing so fast and I just can’t keep up. Once we’d purchased a whole new wardrobe at Kid-to-Kid, we went grocery shopping.

Suzanne dropped the girls off, and while Abe bathed them, I steam cleaned the carpet in their room. I am in love with the new cleaner! I cleaned the house for the next three hours (with the neighbors’ permission), and our floors and carpets have never looked cleaner. Once midnight was upon us, I stopped steam cleaning and just vacuumed, but still–it looks great, and I can’t wait for Monday because I can steam clean every last inch of the house that I didn’t get to today! Yippee!!

Abe’s first day

Today was Abe’s first day at his new job! I wish I had more to report, but I haven’t seen or spoken to him much, since I went to class tonight and ever since I’ve been home he’s been running on the treadmill. We did have a quick conversation during one of my class breaks, though, and he was ecstatic about his new work environment. It seems like such a healthy, wonderful change for him.

In the meantime, I enjoyed his new schedule, because it means I now get up before the kids. It was really nice to read and shower and brush my teeth BEFORE the kids woke up. I also like getting up when it’s still dark out. There’s something cozy about that.

This morning I cleaned the whole house while Mary, who was in a don’t-put-me-down mood, cried most of the time. I fed her a couple times, and that helped a bit.

Class was also fantastic. I finally feel like it’s what I signed up to learn, and I learned so much tonight! For example, stock is not supposed to be salted. Who knew? We learned about a ton of stuff that I’d love to write down, except I hear Abe and want to hear about his new day. So, quickly:

By the time I took this photo, I'd already showered, dressed, and brushed my teeth. (This is AM.) Sadly, I was about six hours ahead of normal.

By the time I took this photo, I’d already showered, dressed, and brushed my teeth. (This is AM.) Sadly, I was about six hours ahead of normal.

While I was cleaning, the girls stopped tantruming for a couple minutes to watch Daniel Tiger together.

While I was cleaning, the girls stopped tantruming for a couple minutes to watch Daniel Tiger together.

When Abe was watching the girls tonight, he took this picture of Mary with the potty seat around her head.

When Abe was watching the girls tonight, he took this picture of Mary with the potty seat around her head.

Here's another one Abe took tonight. That's supposed to be a smile...

Here’s another one Abe took tonight.

Okay, now I get to hear the full scoop on Abe’s day!!!

Baby blessing, beans and bruschetta

The only time in my life I’ve ever been good at fasting was on my mission. That was kind of the Golden Era of fasting in my life, and ever since then I have really struggled. Usually, I break down a couple hours before dinner because all I can think of is food. Last month I didn’t even make it past breakfast! At least today I made it until after my post-church nap, but then I started thinking about food and couldn’t stop. The theme at church seemed to be “God loves us no matter what. Even if we literally can not get out of bed, God loves us as much as if we were the most active, productive people in the world. His love is unchanging.” As I forked into my spaghetti, I was comforted by that message. Next month I will try again.

The pace of the day picked up after that, when I attempted to make a big batch of soup from dried black beans. Here’s something I am ashamed about: I have only tried cooking with dried beans (lentils don’t count) twice in my life, and both times were a huge flop! Until now, I have opted for the cans. But they are so darn expensive, so last night I tried again to soak a bunch of black beans to cook today. I soaked them overnight, cooked them for hours, and reread Mark Bittman’s little homily on the ease and economy of dried beans to bolster my courage. However, even after all of that, my beans still weren’t as creamy as the canned kind. Does anyone know if they need to soak for two days? Cook for six hours? What am I doing wrong?

After I turned my fibrous, less-than-creamy beans into soup, we rushed out the door to drop the kids off at Tom and Suzanne’s so we could attend a baby blessing. Our friends, Aria and Clay Rockwood, had a home blessing tonight. It was exactly the same as a blessing in church, only a lot more fun and with food. They had the best bruschetta I have ever eaten in my life, and Abe and I embarrassed ourselves by going back for…fifths. Aria’s going to send me the recipe for her spread (which involves feta, cream cheese, butter and lemon). Have you ever seen the scene inĀ Julie and Julia where Julie and her husband are eating bruschetta for dinner? I LOVE that scene, and tonight, I lived it out in person. What a dream!

Then we hung out at Tom and Suzanne’s until the girls were so tired that we took them home and put them straight to bed, sans baths.

Here are today’s pictures (also, I figured out yesterday’s pictures, so I amended yesterday’s post, too):

As I was cleaning the kitchen tonight, I saw this duck on the floor and felt overwhelmed with gratitude that I am a mother of small children. Some day they won't leave sweet evidences of innocent play all over the house, and that will be sad.

As I was cleaning the kitchen tonight, I saw this duck on the floor and felt overwhelmed with gratitude that I am a mother of small children. Some day they won’t leave sweet evidences of innocent play all over the house, and that will be sad.

Lydia wailed when we removed her from the side of her grandpa. She thoroughly enjoyed her evening with Tom and Suzanne.

Lydia wailed when we removed her from the side of her grandpa. She thoroughly enjoyed her evening with Tom and Suzanne.

Lydia was born into a family the loves technology.

Lydia was born into a family the loves technology.

 

Mary and Suzanne had fun, too.
Mary and Suzanne had fun, too.