Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Don't worry, Grandma, you can always find another husband.

This is what I said to my grandmother at my grandfather's funeral. In my defense, I was only four at the time and truly meant to comfort her. Four year old logic is a wonderful thing. I am thoroughly enjoying watching WG figure things out and come to her own (incorrect, but completely logical) conclusions about life.

WG has realized that, eventually, living things die. Our conversations about death and dying started when my Grandmother (the one I told to remarry) died earlier this year. She's not morbid or anything, but now she notices that things die. Flowers, bugs, roadkill... Her violin teacher has several (living) turtles and had a frog that died. WG, always observant, asked Miss Maryanne what she did with the frog after it died. Maryanne said she threw it in the woods. WG then concluded that the raccoons probably ate it.

A few weeks later I had forgotten about this exchange and WG and I were reading a book about a little girl whose grandmother had died. WG interrupted the story and our conversation went like this:

WG:"When your grandma got dead, where did she go? Did she go in the garbage?"
Me: "Nooooo...."
WG: "Well, did they throw her in the woods?"
Me: (disturbed) "Um. No... Why do you think that?"
WG: "Remember Miss Maryanne's frog that got dead?"

I couldn't answer her because I was laughing too hard, especially when she asked if the raccoons ate my grandma.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Oh Boy...

I don't know what the discussion was about, but it went something like this:

Tim: "You don't have a choice."

WG: "I think I do have a choice."

We're in for it....

Friday, March 20, 2009

In Defense of the Grit

Many of you know I had an -ahem- difficult time transitioning to life in the South. Once Mom actually sent me a care package complete with a few cans of Frank's sauerkraut. Sauerkraut, you see, is NOT something the indiginous Southern cook deals with a whole lot. You can get it here but you've got to really search for it. Forget about being picky about brand. I don't think I'll ever appreciate boiled peanuts or sweet tea, but I have come to embrace the grit.

The name "grit" doesn't really make you want to eat it, does it? Make yourself feel better about it. Say it like we do: greee-it. There. All better. If you want to be highbrow about it, hide the box and pretend it's polenta. Although, if you live down here and you serve your guests polenta they will look at you suspiciously. Unless they're Northern transplants.

Here is how I cook my gree-its:
1 can chicken broth (about 2 cups)
1 cup water
1 cup quick gree-its (the kind that cook in 5-7 minutes on the stove. NOT instant!)

Boil the liquids together. Add the grits. Stir it until it's the consistency of soft mashed potatoes, or whatever consistency you like. They will continue to thicken when you take them off the heat.

At this point you can add things to them like a handful of shredded cheese, some frozen corn, a drained rinsed can of black beans, salt and pepper, a pinch of cayenne... The possibilities are endless.

I serve grits as a quick side for dinner. Start to finish they can be on the table in about 10 minutes which makes them MUCH faster than any other starch, except maybe for couscous which we can't eat (gluten). We also eat them for breakfast. And sometimes for a quick lunch.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The worm doctor is in!

WG's favorite thing to do outside is to search for worms in the garden. She has wanted to be a worm doctor for quite awhile, and is very happy that spring is here along with the worms. Unfortunately she loves her patients a little too much and a little too hard and most end up in a better place than our garden. Here she is with her latest patient:


Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Parent teacher conference

It's been a long time.

WG is doing well. I went for my first parent-teacher conference a few weeks back. WG is at the top of her class academically and the bottom socially. That's about what we expected. WG is much more comfortable around adults than she is around her peers. It's the catch-22 of RSV lockdown: it keeps them well while they are small, but they lose out on social development. She'll catch up. She's not an outcast, she just doesn't exactly know how to play with her peers and is happy playing by herself.

Academically she's a knockout. On color identification they had her look at colored paper cutouts of bears. The gray bear was a bit faded and was kind of a bluish purplish gray. Miss Kim said she looked at it and said, "That bear is lavender." The faded red was magenta and pink was light pink. No lack of vocabulary here! She's tracking letters from left to right which is, apparently, pretty unusual for her age. She can count to 29 and turn over to 30, 40, 50, etc with prompts. Otherwise it's, "twenty-nine, twenty-ten, twenty-eleven, etc." Her scissor use is improving with the adaptive scissors. I actually kind of miss the worksheets that look like they've been attacked by someone with garden shears. They will work with her on transitioning to regular scissors by the end of the year. She's still writing backwards, but her teacher is chalking that up to her left handedness. WG does very well with the routines at school. Her teacher has no reservations about sending her on to Kindergarten next year. Her only recommendation is to keep up her socialization over the summer.

No pictures today, but if you pop over to my sewing blog you can see pics of my latest projects as well as a pic of WG in the coat that Tim made for her.