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Monday, September 28, 2009

6 months

27 September 2009

Dear Asa,

Six months is a mighty big number, and you are a mighty big boy. Weighing in at 19 pounds this month, you are growing quick. Especially since we started solid foods. You have a new and different energy, new stamina and strength since the introduction of cereal and banana (and now sweet potato, yam, pear and yogurt!). You most definitely enjoy your food and, if I would let you, you’d (try to) feed yourself. One step at a time though kid.

You are easily distracted and, by that same token, interested in every single thing around you. You are constantly craning over my shoulder, trying to see what that person is doing, or where that car is going, or that cat, leaf, bird, speck of dust. You squirm and twist so as to be facing the action always, never missing a moment. You love being a part of the conversation. Eyes darting from left to right you examine the speaker, watching his mouth with curiosity, then you reach for it, fingers needing desperately to touch that noise making thing. Like every intriguing object it must first be pawed, pinched and poked with your tiny fingers, then scooped up and plopped in your mouth. Sometimes you skip the gabbing and go straight for the licking, leaning your drooling mouth right into someone’s face.

(With dad, on the road)

You’ve decided that the worst thing in the world is to have your clothes changed (you feel similarly about being strapped into your car seat). And I mean THE WORST. When I have to change your shirt I take a big deep breath and then plunge in, determined not to stop until the dirty and drooled upon shirt is replaced by a clean one (that will remain clean for exactly 2.8 seconds). And man, do you put up a good fight. You flail your arms, waving them madly, hitting me, yourself, the bed and anything else within your tiny wingspan. You kick and twist your body, rolling one way and then the other, evading me rather deftly. And you scream about it too, of course. Announcing your feelings with all the air in your lungs, you let me know that you do not like this at all, thankyouverymuch.

Our big events this month were tough ones – though I must admit they were probably tougher for me than for you. Falling of the bed was a real doosie. Everyone says it happens, that there’s almost no escaping it. Your kid will fall off something and you will feel horrible for it. And it’s true, it takes only one split second for it to happen. One micro moment in time while your eyes are elsewhere and THUD!, that sickening sound. You began to wail before I could even get you off the floor (a good sign, I thought, somewhere in my panic stricken brain). You were in my arms and we were out the door within seconds. I paced the yard, trying to steady myself before assessing you. My fingers grabbing your small arms and toes, probing for bumps, broken bones, the worst. But you stopped crying before I did. Five, maybe ten minutes and you were on to the next, looking for something new and already distracted by the multitude of colorful, moving objects outside. How quickly you were over it, on to the next. And I, well, I took a bit more calming (thank you Bess for the magic touch).

(Gotta love the drool)

We have also survived your very first cold. I think you hardly noticed it. You played on like nothing was different, like you didn’t have a persistent cough or a river of snot pouring from your nose. The only times you seemed to mind the cold at all were the times we had to help you out. You hated having your nose wiped and sucking it out with that ridiculous nose sucker (aspirator, I think it’s actually called) was just the worst. I hated doing it, you hated sitting through it. But it did help, or at least allow you to suck and breath at the same time, which was of course crucial at meal time. Together, we make it through another milestone.

It’s happening fast (everyone said it would) and you are literally growing before my eyes. Your hair is coming in, you have two bottom teeth about to poke through and a will and determination has surfaced that is positively fierce. You are strong and tenacious, even stubborn sometimes. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love my little fiery Aries, my exuberant boy. My son.


Thursday, September 24, 2009

Split pea and ham

We've all got colds around here (Asa's first) and we're feeling the fall. Soup was definitely in order. Something hardy and filling, warm and comforting. Bored with chicken noodle, I came up with a vegetable filled split pea and ham.

2 table spoons olive oil
1 small onion, diced
2 garlic gloves, minced
2 carrots, chopped
2 small potatoes, cubed
2 celery stalks, chopped
1/2 bell pepper, diced
1 1-lb ham steak, cubed
7 cups stock
1 1-lb bag split peas, rinsed
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons dried marjoram
2 teaspoons dried dill
salt and pepper to taste

Heat the olive oil in a big soup pot. I use a 5 liter stock pot. Add the onions and cook at a med-low temp until soft.
Then add the garlic, ham and bell pepper. Stir everything together and cook a few minutes, until all the flavors start to get to know one another.
Add stock, peas, bay leaves, marjoram, dill, salt and pepper. I'm pretty generous with the pepper on this one, especially fresh cracked. Grind liberally. Turn heat to low or simmer, put the lid on and let cook 1 - 1 1/2 hours. You can leave it longer too, at least an hour though for the peas to soften and the smell to fill your kitchen. Make sure to stir it a few times too.
Then add carrots, potatoes and celery. Cook another 30 - 45 minutes or until the veggies are nice and tender. Again, you could leave it a bit longer too, just make sure to let it bubble long enough for the potatoes to soften. You can blend it up a bit when it's finished if you prefer, but I like to leave it chunky. Gives it a sort of vegetable stew vibe. Serve steaming with heavily buttered bread. Delicious. Oh! And for my vegetarian friends (Hi Bess!) just leave out the ham and use vegetable stock or water and viola, vegetarian, no - vegan! split pea.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

About this blog

Lichen is the symbiotic relationship between a fungus and an algae. It is also my name.

My dad gave me my first Nikon when I was 12 and I have had one ever since.

I started this blog as a place to showcase my photos. Over time it has grown into a diary of sorts, a story in the making. The birth of my son, Asa in March of this year has taken the blog in an obvious direction. These days there are lots of photos of him and lots of stories about my experience of motherhood. I don’t see that changing much any time soon.

In 2007 I married Angus.

Our life is anything but ordinary. Angus is a musician, traveling and touring with his band, BROTHER. I married into the rockstar life. As much as is possible Asa and I go along. We take long road trips together, we fly across the country together and we stay in all manner of accommodation along the way. This is not always easy, but remaining as a family is most important right now, so we make it work.

I love to cook, love to eat and love to piece together different recipes. I dabble in gardening, card making and scrap booking. My days are filled with washing cloth diapers, deciding what’s for dinner and learning Photo Shop, one tutorial at a time. Chances are, you’ll read about all of these things here at One Moment Captured.

Thanks for visiting,

Monday, September 21, 2009

Blue eyed boy

Eyes so blue, like his grandmother, like his aunt. They're a surprise every time I see them.

They catch me off guard, these eyes like blueberries, eyes like sapphires. I don't expect them. Brown, perhaps, hazel most likely, even green. No mom, they're blue.

Blue like storming seas, blue like early winter mornings. Blue like my baby boy's eyes. Asa blue.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

New Trick: Standing up in the crib

Holy crap! Just last night I sat Asa down in his crib and this happen:

This was shocking, to say the least. Asa has loved being "stood up" on his feet for a while now, but it's always me doing the pulling. As of last night, around 7pm, he will do it himself, thank you very much. 

It's like I blinked and he's mobile. He shimmies on his tummy now, comando style. He sits up sometimes, but usually ends up folded over his legs, trying to suck his toes. Once or twice now I have put him down, turned around for something, and turned back only to find him across the room sucking on my sandal. Kid is quick, thats for sure.

And now with the pulling up - cruising and walking can't be too far behind. This is a whole new ballgame and I have a feeling I am in for some long innings chasing after this one. Here we go...

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

New trick: Sitting up

Introducing: New Tricks

The first in an ongoing series.

This installment is Sitting Up.

Trying something new

A new template, a new format, a new blog. Welcome.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

When he's gone

When he’s gone, things are not quite right.

This old house takes on an eerie quiet, a sustained silence that’s unnatural. Even the walls know he is away and refuse to creak as usual. The floorboards and the stairs groan as I lumber up them, baby on one hip, dirty laundry on the other. But the groan is half hearted and weak, as if even these inanimate objects, these pieces of our home, protest his absence. I sigh my agreeance as I round the landing and head towards the washer.

In the morning I feel it the most, this strange lacking. The bed is enormous, comforters and blankets stretch for miles, and strain as I might I cannot take up enough room to make this bed feel full. There are big, gaping expanses of mattress all around me, empty places he should fill. I am swimming in pillows, tossing and turning on a sea of sheets, as dawn slowly rolls in. I hear Asa in his crib by the bed. Early morning grunts and squeaks, calling out to the new day. It’s time to abandon this too-big bed and get up.

Morning fades into afternoon. Hours filled with fighting for nap time and feeding rice cereal; dish washing and email checking. Mundane tasks linked together by my pacing feet. The day progresses, moving forward from 3 to 4 and 5 o’clock, but something is amiss, something is not quite right. The hollow tick of the clock in the kitchen is out of tune and out of synch. The coffee mug feels misshapen in my hand. Our day falters, unsure of it’s direction until we end up at night. Bedtime again and the crumpled expanse of bed lays before me, just as empty as when I left it this morning.

When he’s gone things are not quite right because we belong together. Because we are a family, a unit, a party of three. We were made for each other, the three of us, and things are only as they should be when we are as we should be – together.

But tomorrow, he comes home. And the world will be right again.



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