Sunday, February 27, 2011

4 month update & photo

What a stud!

Where did my little baby go? Liam is 13.8 pounds and is starting to get those yummy baby thighs. I don't know exactly how tall he is, but I had to remove the large head positioner from his car seat.

He thinks he's a big kid. He doesn't like to sit reclined in the bouncer or car seat anymore. He does mini-crunches to try to sit up. He hasn't rolled over from tummy to back again since the times he did it when he was about 8 weeks old. He rolled over from back to tummy for the first time on February 24th and again on the 26th. He can support himself sitting up for a few seconds. He laughs pretty regularly now and babbles/squeals all of the time. He is really social and becoming more and more interactive.

He is right in the middle of the "4 month wakeful period." He was sleeping really well for a while and only waking up once a night. That has totally disappeared and he is up 3 or 4 times again. He goes back to sleep easier now though and is only up for 30 to 45 minutes depending on how long he nurses.

I'm doing okay. I've lost all of the baby weight plus some. I really need to gain some muscle though. Nursing is going well. I haven't had anymore plugged ducts. I wish Liam would take a bottle though so that I could have a little more Julia-time. I've still got the baby blues and should probably go see my OB about it.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Photography Friday: Woody

The Story: I'm not going to bother with stats and outtakes this week. This is one of the photos for the "secret project" I have been working on. I'll post the rest once I complete the project, which will hopefully be next week. It depends on how long it takes for me to get all of the prints.

Recipe: Italian Soup & French Bread

I have wanted to make my own French bread for a while now. Oh-Em-Gee, it is so good! There are few things better than a warm piece of bread right out of the oven.

Italian Pasta & Bean Soup (adapted from a recipe passed along at a women's group at church)
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 onion, chopped
1 tbsp garlic, minced
3 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 cups of elbow macaroni, uncooked
15 oz can of cannelloni beans, drained & rinsed
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes, with liquid
1 tbsp dried parsley
Parmesan cheese

Heat olive oil in a pot on medium-high heat. Add onion and cook for 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 more minute. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 5 minutes. Add beans and tomatoes and cook until the pasta is tender. Remove from heat and stir in parsley. Serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Remember to cover any leftover. I left the pot to cool before putting it in storage containers and it lost a lot of the moisture. This recipe is halved from the original, except the tomatoes (because it's hard to only use 1/2 can of tomatoes. There were too many tomatoes and not enough pasta. I would have also liked some more veggies, maybe squash or eggplant or zucchini. 

French Bread (from French Bread 2 from
1 1/4 cups warm water
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
3 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp active, dry yeast
1 egg
1 tbsp water
2 tsp sesame seeds

Combine water, sugar, salt, flour and yeast in a bread machine. My bread machine requires liquid ingredient first, then solid and yeast last. Select the dough setting. Dough takes 90 minutes on my machine. 

When the cycle is complete, turn dough onto a lightly floured surface. Divide in half. With a rolling pin, roll into 10 inch by 8 inch rectangles. Roll up jelly-roll style and pinch seams to seal. I didn't know what jelly-roll style meant, so I looked up a YouTube video of how to make French bread. It is too hard to explain and I didn't save the link, so that is what I suggest you do. Place loaves seam side down on a greased pan. Cover and let rise on a warm heating pad until doubled, about 20 minutes.

Whisk egg and water. Brush over loaves. Make 4 shallow slashes with a knife across the top of each loaf. Sprinkle with sesame seeds if desired. I made 1 loaf with sesame seeds and 1 without. I preferred the one with the sesame seeds. 

Bake at 375 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Try to not burn your mouth as you tear into the fluffy deliciousness of freshly baked bread.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Photography Friday: I am not a slacker

I took pictures this week, but they are for a "secret project" that I am working on that Dan isn't allowed to see yet. I'll share them soon. Until then, enjoy an old photo. Dan was taking Liam's clothes off and made him a Toadstool outfit. He is 4 days old in this photo.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Photography Friday: Valentine's Day

The Stats: 
Nikon D70
Sigma 18-55mm
SB-600 speedlight at +3.0 pointed toward the ceiling
1/500 sec exposure
ISO 200
31mm focal length

The Process: Adjusted white balance and increased exposure with Raw Shooter Essentials. Cropped with Microsoft Office picture editor.

The Story: Happy Valentine's Day from Liam & Julia.

The Highlights: I'm going to really enjoy consuming these props.

The Lowlights: I think that I traumatized Liam. He really hated the sound of the M&Ms moving on the plexiglass and freaked out a little. He will probably never be able to eat M&Ms. He kept making M&M angels, which resulted in the white background showing. I was going to edit it with Gimp, but I am not that talented.

The Outtake: Liam tries to scoot away.