Saturday, September 27, 2008

Paducah picnic and sushi

Stephen's first "vacation" to Paducah included many yummy meals. Well, at least for me and Grammy Tilsch. I can only hope Stephen enjoyed them too.Thursday night we had seaweed salad, caterpillar roll and spider roll from Tokyo Sushi restaurant near Sam's Club. I really like the way they make their seaweed salad, with green onion and sesame and several different types of seaweed.
Stephen slept while we gulped everything down.
And then Friday we had a picnic at Bob Noble Park ... the kind of place Hopkinsville should have, but doesn't. We ate smoked chicken from Buzzard Brothers under the big pavilion along with slices of buttery sweet bread from Kirchoff's bakery and vinegar slaw. We also had grapes, brownie and red bell pepper slices.

Stephen didn't sleep, but he was relatively content.

Paducah produce

Paducah's farmers market is awesome. We visited last July when my folks and Joe and I met up there before I had Stephen. I bought a white pattypan squash and it was delicious.... the same vendor, a very nice man originally from Syria, was at the market and had lovely produce again. ...And one giganto pattypan sitting atop a bin full of little dark green acorn squash. It was the only pattypan, and I didn't see a price for it. I scooped it up, like a treasure, and asked him how much.

For that? Just take it, he replied. He said that he'd been trying to sell it for two weeks :-) Mom bought three acorn squash for a dollar just to give him some business. He said he was opening his own farmstand in Lone Oak and will have someone else man his farmers market booth.

Paducah Barbecue Festival

It just so happened that the time mom and I picked to meet up in Paducah is the weekend of Paducah's big bbq festival. It took up the entire area from the parking lot where the farmers' market is all the way to Broadway. Stephen slept as we strolled around. We sampled Buzzard Brothers pulled pork sandwich as well as Larry Daryl and Daryl. Both were good, but mom and I felt that Buzzard Brothers (which had the longest line of the dozens of booths there) had a smokey-er sauce, softer bun and more tender meat. Larry, Daryl and Daryl (pictured below), though they also had been recommended and had a good crowd, was slightly less saucey and had too many big chunks of meat that made it a little difficult to eat the sandwich.

A lady at the farmers market recommended this catfish and hushpuppy kebob from the Christian radio station booth. She was right, it was very good. I normally don't like hushpuppies, but these had a nice green onion flavor.

Trip to Paducah

Mom and son Parrino went for a little adventure on Thursday and came back this morning. We left after Stephen's 4:30 a.m. feeding and got to Paducah to meet up with Grammy Tilsch in about an hour and 15 minutes. Here's a little series of photos of Stephen enjoying the king sized bed at the Marriot Residence in, hanging out with Hoops and YoYo.




Care package from Rachel!


Thank you, thank you, thank you!
Rachel Sawatzky, my former coworker at ORTV in Taipei, sent us this very nice package of goodies from Taiwan. A CUTE whale overall and polo outfit for Stephen when he's bigger than I can imagine him being. Melon-flavored Extra gum. Taro cereal. Studio Classroom magazine. A book of inspirational stories for moms (which I've been reading to keep me awake during late night feedings) and best of all.. CoCo Chex... which are way way better than the horrible American chocolate chex.

radom cuteness

Seafood Boil


Last Saturday we enjoyed a seafood boil at Jennifer Brown's in honor of Michele and Danny's upcoming wedding :-)

Stephen was an angel and slept the entire time, even though we were outside and it was a little drizzly and chilly.

The meal was delicious and mysterious, eating savory shrimp, potatoes, sausage, chicken and salad scooped from a edible mound atop newspaper. Here's a bag of leftovers.

Steverobics

Happy or sad, this kid can really kick. Here he is in his Indians outfit from his great-aunt Mary Alice, having a nice happy kick session.
And down below we have an unhappy kick session, fresh from the bath. He likes his baths now, but the getting out part is where we get a little kicky.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Happy One Month!

This photo was taken a few days shy of his one month birthday... he had taken to sleeping some of his naps in his infant chair, a gift from my former boss, Laura Noeth. He's totally relaxed in this pic. :-)
This was taken yesterday. Note the new (but completely too big) sleeper that I bought for him as a 1-month birthday gift and the adorable socks, part of a set of tennis shoe socks from my cronie, Priscilla (Bernikowicz) Barton.

Summer's final bounty

Kai came over on Monday, bringing a loaded sandwich from Jersey Mikes and a grocery bag of vegetables from her garden, which let me tell you, is AMAZING. Six or seven raised beds, mounds of mulch, produce that looks and tastes perfect.

I also picked the last of the lemon boy tomatoes. My plant seems to have flattened and rotted, but some how there's still life coursing through the blackened stems to give a dozen or so tomatoes a golden gleam.

More food from friends



I got very behind on thanking all those from Restoration House who brought us meals... and I'm afraid I didn't even get to photograph everything. Tina Nahid brought over a wonderful meal of Salmon Patties and broccoli (my fav vegetable) and a salad with homemade dressing. I was munching on those Salmon Patties for breakfast many mornings... I liked them A LOT. It was such a convenient way to get a dose of protein.

Deona Beasley also brought over a delicious meal with really tender barbecue chicken. I made a lot of grilled chicken salads with it.

The Martins brought over Papa Johns Pizza (Joe and my favorite) and Austyn and Jenny brought over a ton of food from a local Chinese restaurant... honey chicken, egg rolls, fried dumplings, steamed and veggie fried rice.

Then Brenden and Jennifer just gave us a hot meal of poppy seed chicken (sans poppy seeds :-) rolls and baked potatoes.

Kai blessed us again with a beautiful bounty from her garden.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Don't try this at home

Or anywhere.

Avocado Kiwi Muffins...
It seemed like a pretty inspired thing when I thought of it in the shower. We had two avocados about to walk away, and three kiwis forgotten in the crisper. Both are exotic green fruits... one is rich and fatty, the other sweet and tangy.
Anyhow, if I had added more sugar and flour, I think it might have worked. But the sign that these are truly a failure is that we still have most of them sitting in a bag on the counter. Usually Joe and I polish off a dozen muffins in a day or two.

Avocado Kiwi Muffins
1 cup flour (should have used 1/2 cup more)
2 very ripe kiwis, mashed
1 avocado, mashed
1/3 cup sugar (should have used more)
3 tsp baking powder
1 egg
2 T oil
dash salt
vanilla extract

Mine were done, but dense and gooey inside. Needed more sugar and more flour. Sigh.

French basil soup

Kai and Chris McQueen came over Friday night with Basil Soup, using basil from their awesome garden. Kai learned to make this soup from her host family when she lived in France. If I had the recipe, I'd post it.
She also brought very soft cake mix cookies... which Joe and I ate too fast.
Stephen was behaving his best.

New friend




Stephen recently decided he likes to hang out on my desk, as long as there's someone there to keep him company. This was taken yesterday.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Meals from Rachel and DiAnna

Rachel Jensen, my friend and neighbor down the street, brought us a dinner of Jerk Chicken, Asian cabbage salad and baked beans on Tuesday evening. The chicken had a little kick... but not too hot :-) And I really liked the sweet dressing for the salad, even the next day when everything is all soggy and soaked in the sauce.
DiAnna Young and her son Caleb and daughter Micheala brought over a spaghetti dinner last night, complete with salad, garlic bread and a chocolate cake! Her spaghetti was true comfort food-- I liked the big pieces of mushroom, tomato and ground beef already mixed in.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Mine! All Mine!

Joe bought me this hummingbird feeder and it has been a great source of entertainment, hanging just outside our back window. There are three hummingbirds that spend all day chasing each other and making their high-pitched tweeets as they duke it out. One bird in particular seems to have laid claim to the feeder. He's more often perched on the wire that it's suspended from than eating from one of the plastic flowers. We've already gone through one batch of the store-bought solution. We made our own "nectar" using one part sugar to four parts boiling water. I feel better giving them something that doesn't have artificial coloring in it. This also eliminates the bright red poop everywhere. Did you know hummingbirds have tongues? I guess that should be obvious since other birds have them, but watch this video and you'll see what I mean.


video

Meal from Janice

Though this is the first week on my own... it's not really. Restoration House sisters have lined up meals for us each night. I'm very blessed because I've not had time to make anything but a quick salad nicoise since Stephen was born.

Last night Joe and I got to snarf down this extremely yummy and thoughtful meal from Janice Fancher, who shares with us an adventurous taste in food.

The chicken was marinated in a sweet and savory sauce, the salad featured heirloom grape and pear tomatoes and mini fresh mozzerella balls, and the chickpea and blackbean salsa was also very tasty. It was very nice to get a variety of veggies. The roasted potatoes and rolls were also great. I only wish Joe and I could have sat down to eat together instead of taking turns wolfing while the other rocked the crying baby. :-)

Labor Day as a family

A rare moment of peace. Stephen usually takes his morning naps OK, but cries through the afternoon... pretty much non-stop from feeding to feeding. Don't know how to handle this, but I guess he's still only 16 days old, so we'll cut him some slack.
I'm so glad that we had one day of holiday before tackling this week -- my first week on my own with baby at home. Mom and Dad left early Monday morning.

Joe and I took Stephen for his first "stroll," which he seemed to enjoy. We only went down the street and back again, hoping not to overstimulate him. Unfortunately, though he seems to really like his carseat, he's not too keen on his crib... yet.