Friday, February 29, 2008

happy leap year

I'm not sure why the kid on the rock will be back on Sunday, but Happy Leap Year to all. Growing up I always wished that I had a leap year birthday. Honestly, I still wish it. Leap year is such an enigma to me. I understand the gregorian calendar thing, I get the whole 365 and 1/4 days..blah, blah, blah. It's still an enigma. This extra day every four years... from out of nowhere!! It's wonderful really, besides the fact that it makes March seem just a little further away. I do enjoy the anticipation that it adds to the birthday wait though (21 days away!!!)! March has got to be one of the best months. I would live in September -March if I could. Just nix April through August. So, yeah, like I said earlier... Happy Leap Year! I hope that you all find something great to do with your extra day! I'm just insanely glad that I have such wonderful people to share it with. Kent and Zeb and I are having our own little Leap day celebration.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

obama rally

On the news last night I noticed that there was going to be an Obama rally at the Downtown library today! and there was to be a distinguished guest-- Caroline Kennedy. They posted a number to call and make reservations so I called (they only let in 200 people) and got a spot. With all of these political visitors to the glass city and the integral role we'll be playing in the democratic primaries, I had to get involved in something! Especially since I am now 90% sure that I'll be voting democratic on Tuesday and I'm still undecided for the upcoming vote in November. My neighbor and I dragged our little rugrats down to the library and waited for an hour and a half (they did seat us on time, it's just that Ms. Kennedy was late arriving) to hear her speak.

In preparation I read up on Obama's main issues again. I wanted to ask some questions about healthcare and possibly education if there was time! It got me all excited and energized to go and then once it started I was kind of underwhelmed. The rally was rather uniformative and surprisingly very lackluster . I was surprised at the unenthusiastic speeches. Perhaps Caroline was pooped. She's been all over Ohio today and may have been understandably tired, but I wanted something more. I expected to leave a little more inspired and excited to vote. Don't get me wrong, I'm still voting, and it WON'T be for "he/she who must not be named", I was just a little disappointed, that's all. I'm still glad that I got to be there and be a part of it though.

Zeb was pretty fidgity from sitting so long, but didn't squeal or screech during the speeches. The lighting wasn't fabulous but I got some pretty good pictures at the end. We were on the third row! and were completely surrounded by Ronald Regan haters :) Caroline Kennedy said something about him and everybody booed.

I tried to get a picture of Caroline and Zeb, but it came out completely blurred! I couldn't simultaneously hold/position Zeb and get a good enough angle to get a picture that included both of them! she did say that he was cute though :)

I do absolutely love Obama's education reform plan and Caroline touched on it very lightly. I got a video of that part of the speech but can't get it to load...I'll try later this evening!

I can't wait for Tuesday! It's kind of a big deal! Barack or Hillary?!?! what do you all think? Is anybody as angst ridden as I am?!?!?

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

ice cream, chris march, and russia

We found this new flavor of ice cream. It is TO DIE FOR and it's LIGHT. This whole slow churned ice cream technology is the best thing since the internet. The ice cream tastes just as delicious and has 1/2 the fat and 1/3 the calories. A-freaking-mazing. Really though, this flavor is UNREAListicly good. Oh my.

Tonight was the second to last episode of project runway season 4. Kent humors me every Wednesday night and sits and watches it with me from 10 to 11. I have become obsessed and now have great anxiety as to the outcome of "Bryant Park's Fashion Week" runway show next episode. Last week they eliminated Sweet P and I was devastated. After the show I even asked Kent if I could send her a letter with ten dollars in it. This week they ousted Chris March. I love that guy. He's the large one in the picture. His laugh could cheer up the entire country of Russia if he visited. I don't think the fact that he used human hair in his pieces was all that gross. Definitely not so bad as to get him eliminated.

And finally, speaking of the Mother Country, tonight I had the opportunity to help with the Youth activity at the church. It was a blast! The kids took "flights" (on a makeshift plane with a real flight attendant from the ward) to different countries and stopped by Russia. Another guy in the ward did it with me and it was pretty fun. We completely froze out our room (eric, the guy that did Ecuador, got a bunch of space heaters and totally baked the kids that went to his stop. It was so hot that one girl even threw up!) by opening doors and windows. I made cabbage and potato piroshki and found real vafli and rulet cakes at the local Russian grocery store! The kids wouldn't touch the cabbage and potato rolls ,but luckily all of the leaders loved them. I did snap a picture of our room. I even completely dressed up in my traditional russian dress. I love the youth and can't wait till Zeb's a teenager :) I know, I know... I am wishing things beyond my own comprehension and wisdom. I really do love teenagers though.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

"near blizzard"

The news stations have sent out the winter storm warnings. The storm has an official category. The weather has now reached "near blizzard" status. What a funny funny city (you know how sometimes when you say funny, you really mean dumb? this is one of those times). It will never reach actual "blizzard" status because the winds aren't high enough. Can't we just call it a snow storm? my goodness. Here is a picture of Al and Roxanne, our "fix-it" people, making sure that our walks our clear :) Thank you Al and Roxanne. We are supposed to have 8-12 inches by tonight!

The snow is absolutely BEAUTIFUL. I just love snow so so much. School was cancelled for Kent (but he went anyway to study. thank you andrew for your four wheel drive!) and we didn't have walking group, so I decided to send Zeb outside to play. I bundled him up in his snowsuit, and I in mine :) and we set out to roll around in the snow.

He liked to be outside, but he didn't really appreciate the snow like I do. He's getting there (although it may not look like it). When I was little my parents made me do all sorts of things that I didn't like and it has made me a stronger person. He wasn't cold, he just didn't like that he couldn't move :) Both he and Sam were kind of party poopers. I could have stayed out all day :) We did stay out long enough to make snow angels! and if you look closely you can see Zeb's name written in the snow! Lindsay put food coloring in a water bottle and we did snow art.

Monday, February 25, 2008

he was so much fun today (it may be boring to all of you though).

He has such a personality. You know how some babies just stare? or they just kind of exist? Little Zeb is nothing like them :) This kid is spunky. We've decided to nickname him "hovercraft". His little scoot has become aquatic. Zeb is as quick as lightening on both land and water. He got loose after his bath tonight. Kent couldn't even get him still long enough to attach a diaper. He's also a garbage disposal! Today he had a bowl of cereal for breakfast (cheerios), at lunch he gobbled down a nutrigrain bar, an entire hot dog and 2 whole graham crackers, and then for dinner he slurped down a bowl of potato soup and a roll! no wonder his thunder thighs are increasing in diameter daily.
oh, and here's my roll recipe that zeb gobbled up this evening! It comes from Grandma Oswald. They are the best rolls I've ever tasted!
combine and set aside:
1 package yeast
1/2 c lukewarm water
1/2 tsp sugar
combine : 1/2 c mashed potatoes and 3/4 c potato water
combine these ingredients: (and add to the potato mix)
1 beaten egg
1/3 c sugar

1/2 c shortening
1/2 tbsp salt
add yeast mixture and mix in 4 c flour. Let rise to double (1 hr). Roll out and cut into size and shape. Let rise again until double. Bake 12-15 minutes at 400.

just in case you haven't made it in awhile....

Kent is the master of Sunday dinner! We usually do roast and potatoes or lemon chicken with onion gravy, but occasionally he throws in his amazing baked chicken parmigiana. I'm not going to lie, my fav is the roast! Fortunately for our cholesterol levels red meat is becoming less and less of a tradition in our home. Here's a pic of his parmigiana and the INSANELY easy way to get it done. I'm sure it's already a staple in many of your households but if you need a refresher, here goes!

2 chickens, pounded some
1 egg
1/2 cup flour
delicious italian seasoned breadcrumbs
slices of mozarella cheese
whole wheat pasta
1 can of your fav pasta/pizza/tomato sauce (this
MAKES or breaks the dish)

coat the chickens with flour, dip in egg and then smother with lots of delicious bread crumbs! bake in the oven at 400 for ten-twelve minutes on each side (depending on thickness of meat). Spoon sauce over them, add cheese slices, then bake an additional 5 minutes. Serve over pasta.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

wonderful saturday!

It's finally warming up :) Yesterday got above 32 degrees and I decided it was finally warm enough to run outside again. I forgot how hard it is to run hills pushing Zeb in his stroller. It about kicked my trash! But it felt GREAT to be outside. Besides some of the bumpy terrain (thanks to the snow) Zeb enjoyed the outing as well. He even zonked for the last 20 minutes.

Later in the day we got to go to an AMAZING little lunch party. One of Kent's classmates lived in Brazil for a year with his wife and they had a bunch of people with Brazilian connections over for a huge Brazilian feast ! Lucky for us, Kent had the connection . They set up their house like a bistro and made authentic Brazilian food. I meant to get a picture but the food was consumed far too quickly. It looked almost exactly like this picture. I know, it looks nast-o, but really, it was absolutely delicious! It was some of the best Brazilian food I've had. Kent also agreed. He said it was very very authentic! and even zeb ate it up (although the beans seemed to pass right through him as we discovered this morning)! Kent promised he'd try to make it for us soon. I was shocked at how much I enjoyed it.

After the Brazilian bash Kent agreed to take me to see his cadaver! I've been asking since he started anatomy and this was the last week that "guests" were allowed. The Sacks (other first years in the ward) came with us so we could switch off babies (for some reason they aren't allowed down in the lab). It was fascinating! We did cadavers in college but not to this extent AT ALL! Kent's body was ridiculously greasy. It made me want to go out and go running again. There was fat lining EVERY organ in the body. He even had a hernia that filled his scrotum with so much fat that it was as large as a grapefruit.

Little Zeb loved the outing because he got to play with his pal, Cohen. They are 24 days apart but little Zeb seems to be packing on the pounds lately and looks like a little monster next to him! Zeb's cheeks get fatter and fatter everyday. We aren't sure what he's doing in this bottom picture!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

his crowd pleaser

This is the rugrat's version of a courtesy laugh. He is more than aware when you want him to laugh or react to him. This is what he gives. It's actually pretty dang funny. This kid is such a morning person, it's admirable. He is so cheerful and so happy and so AWAKE! It really does help my ineptitude as a morning caretaker. Slowly but surely I am graduating from morning zombie to morning mom. How can you not have a smile on your face when he spurts into random giggles as you walk into his room? even if it is early! and sorry about the fact that I'm video posting twice in the same post today, but here's zeb and a "real" crawl. He has been able to do it for quite some time now but it's impossible to catch! He only does it when he really wants to. He much prefers the scoot (which he has mastered perfectly now). I do love the way he attacks the shark in this clip.

Friday, February 22, 2008

good reads

Usually I am not a fan of historical non fiction but because this was biologically historical I decided to try it out. I tend to skim through these types of books (many details and facts) and The Ghost Map was no exception. I thouroughly enjoyed it however. I didn't get in every detail but I was intrigued by the story and the way this epidemic changed the modern world.

The second book, Angry Houswives Eating Bon-Bons, was a quick light-hearted read. There was one chapter that I wish would have been left out completely describing a soldier's experience in the Vietnam war, but other then that I thought the book was really fun.

please continue to send me any recommendations!!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

I'm piddling around with the blog so the next little while may be messy (hence the non-centered pic of Toledo, Spain. I know it's going to make all of you OCD people avoid us for awhile. I'm sorry.). If you see anything that you hate/love amidst my construction, please comment and let me know. I'm sick of the green. I may be going all white, we'll see.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

He just loves other kids. Zeb was completely enamored by all of the children at storytime today! and he loved the puppet show. He just sat and watched and chomped on his binky. He was entranced. It's as though he was thinking about the puppets. I loved it. I love having this perfect little adorable rugrat (ya think I'm slightly biased or what?!). I love baby zeb.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

His hair is getting out of control. I trim the hair above his ears once a week and yet it still grows out to look like this! out of control. the rugrat was not on good behavior this morning. He woke up at five. grrrr. I stuck him in his carseat (it's kinda like his lazyboy) and put on baby einstein . I got a blanket and curled up on the couch to learn some sign language (baby einstein's first signs) with him. Next thing I know he's screaming at me from the kitchen. He'd gotten himself stuck in the dark corner and must have become disoriented (and I must have fallen asleep). I'm going to have to buckle him in next time.

Now that Zeb is mobile and can stand up against things we decided to venture out to playground world (last friday). This place sells large playground sets and lets kids play on their floor models twice a week. It was INSANE. There were kids EVERYWHERE. I hovered like a vulture over the baby swing waiting for it to free up. Zeb loved it. He was giggling the entire time and didn't ralph a bit. I'd even just fed him. Maybe he won't take after his dad after all.

Monday, February 18, 2008

a little non patriotic today

I'm slightly non patriotic today because Kent is at school. He has class even though it's president's day. boo. So, in order to try and celebrate presidents, I am trying to figure out how to cast my vote on March 4. The primary is going to play a major role in the at least the Democratic election and I want to make my vote count. We don't have to declare a party until we actually cast our ballots that day and I am considering (planning on) affiliating myself as a democrat for the primary. Any thoughts? If I can't see my candidate put on the ticket, I may as well get the one off that I can't stand, right?!!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

what a day.

You know, if kent has to be gone all of the time (okay, not all of the time, but LOTS of the time) studying and doing schoolwork, I sure am glad that I am in such a rad place like (holy) Toledo. The people here are astounding.

This morning we started off cleaning the church building. After the cleaning we had an enrichment craft activity. Later in the day we had the wonderful opportunity to go to George's baptism! I love George. Sure, he's odd, but he is such a sweet and kind man. Zeb loves him. It has been such a great thing to get to know him over the last six months. This picture doesn't do justice to his key obsession. I think he didn't wear them all because it was his baptism!

After the baptism we had the sister missionaries over for dinner. The sisters in our ward are absolutely wonderful! I can't explain just how much I love being able to live here in Ohio and be a part of the work.

Friday, February 15, 2008

maybe that's why....

The rugrat has lost his voice. I hope that it isn't accompanied by a sore throat because it's pretty cute actually. This video snippet shows just how bright out little Einstein is. I think that he understands a lot of what we say. He is quite the obedient child.

I have been wondering what caused his loss of voice and then I remembered what had happened early yesterday morning. As you all know, Zeb is mobile. Mobile children seem to find the nastiest and weirdest of carpet detritus. Yesterday morning was no exception. I looked over to see zeb chomping away with this nasty little gray straggler hanging out of his mouth. Upon closer examination and IMMEDIATE extraction, I found THIS!!!! AHHHHHHHHHH. He had the whole freaking thing in his mouth. As I pulled it out of his mouth, and it kept coming and coming, I actually dry heaved. I didn't even dry heave when I was pregnant! I have no earthly idea as to what it is or where it came from. It looks like a dirty mop string, but we don't have a mop!!! what does it look like? any ideas on what it could be? click on the image to get a better look. nast-o.

In spite of the voice and nasty wormy thing, Z has been healthy, happy, and cheerful! Last night I asked him to go to bed early and he went to sleep at 6:45 (obedient, huh?). At six Kent got home from his meijer scavenger hunt (which included many a perilous search. you'll have to ask him about it as some of his adventures at the store are not blog appropriate) and picking up Chili's takeout--oh so delicious and free (we finally spent the gift card he gave me Christmas 2006). Zeb ate dinner with us and then promptly zonked. Such a good little rugrat!!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Kent, will you "peas" be my Valentine?

thanks for tricking me into that valentine's date four years ago! The Valentine's days have just gotten better and better since then :) I love you Ralph.

a day of LOVES (1 and 2)

I LOVE LOVE LOVE (#1)teaching. Is that weird? I think that teaching is my hobby. Some people like to scrapbook, some paint, some do crafts, some dance. I teach. Even at six AM I can't believe how much I enjoy teaching the Old Testament to teenagers :)

Luckily for them I decided to make strawberries and whip cream with buttermilk syrup (#2. my second love. I love this stuff) on French Toast for Kent for Valentine's day. They greatly benefited. Here are two of the five students. They are the only ones that showed up today. It was five degrees and felt like -3 when they showed up. I can't believe that they are so dedicated. I don't know if I could have done it everyday in high school.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

happy early valentimes

Yes, it's pink, but it's a large bug so I decided to let him play with it. He loves to shake it and listen to the eyeballs rattle around. Thank you nannie annie, gpa, and daysa for Zeb's valentine (apparently you forgot about your real family member, ME! zeb is only 50% Oswald you know!!). To Kent's chagrin, it leaves little Zeb covered in festive glitter. I think it's kinda cute. I can't wait till tomorrow! I absolutely love Valentine's Day. Yet another reason to do something special and exciting. Let's hope and pray that there isn't another minor snow flurry that shuts down Toledo. Yesterday everybody went crazy. No cooking group even! I was devastated and reveled in my fair share of sulking before Kent finally snapped me out of it. It was the first time I have been angry at the snow! I quickly shifted my blame to the city of Toledo and it's atrocious snow removal methods. It's all Carty Finkbeiner's fault. Dang liberals.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Happy International Pancake Day!!!

Yum! It goes on all day today! you aren't too late! Everybody head to IHOP (till 10 tonight) for free pancakes :)

We decided to head over after walking group to make sure the calories that we burned off were quickly returned! Six adults, nine kids, and 39 free pancakes. It was wonderfully fun. We all ordered waters as well. I was a little embarrassed at first but then realized...hey, what the heck, they are the ones offering free pancakes, right? and we did leave a nice tip.

The pancakes were giant and delicious! and all of the little girls loved the pink and purple syrup (strawberry and blueberry). I have decided that wherever something free is offered, there you will also find Mormons! Why is it that we flock to these events (remember how we showed up early in the pouring rain to get free mall t-shirts back in September)? I get excited about being a part of them! Maybe I'm crazy, definitely I'm thrifty (aka cheap) :)

Don't mind the fact that we all look so beautiful in our pictures. Not yet showered, no make-up, and great walking outfits. It was a blast to sit and chat. Zeb slept through most of the event, but did manage to get in a pancake at the end.

Monday, February 11, 2008

fabulous day :)

The day started off with seminary and I loved it. The six am thing wasn't nearly as bad as I thought (we'll see how tomorrow goes) and 2nd kings is full of great stories (the kids especially loved when I showed them real pictures of people with leprosy that had skin falling off and bones visible). Zeb woke up earlier than usual (6:45) and was in HEAVEN when he realized we had visitors. They loved him as well.

Later in the morning we had story time at the library for the little rugrat! I kinda cheated to get him in, but he LOVES it. The kids are supposed to be twelve months and older to participate. When they asked me how old he was, I replied "almost one". It's true, right? He's closer to one than zero. Plus, he was FAR better behaved than many of the nasty little toddlers there! they were baaaad. I'll get a picture next week to post.

This evening we had our friend George over for dinner. The man is HILARIOUS. I must get a picture for you all to meet him! He carries at least 100 (I am NOT exaggerating a bit) keys and other jangly things around on his belt. He is such a kind old man and, of course, Zeb loves him! For the occasion I decided to go all out and make some pretty fun recipes for dinner, both of which I will post for your enjoyment and use.
I cannot claim ownership of either recipe. Our "Bruschetta Stuffed Chicken" is from the Kraftfoods magazine and the "S'mores Brownies" recipe is from the Dockters who stole it from another ward member (please make yourself known if it was you!). Kent gave the stuffed chicken a TEN! it was so dang easy to make and was quite gourmet looking/tasting. George loved it as well :) He likes stuffed chickens a lot. The S'mores brownies are a fabulous and ridiculously easy way to spice up a simple treat.


1 can (14-1/2 oz.) Italian-style diced tomatoes, undrained
1-1/4 cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese,
basil, to taste
1 pkg. Chicken Stuffing
Chicken breasts (1-2 lbs)
1/3 cup italian dressing (or any that you have)

pound the chicken flat with a meat tenderizer (in a freezer bag). Mix all the other ingredients except for 1/2 the cheese and dressing. Spread the stuffing mix evenly over the chicken breasts and roll them up tight (we used toothpicks to help them stay wrapped). Pour dressing over the breasts. Add remainder of the cheese with 2-3 minutes left.
cook 40 minutes at 350.

S'mores Brownies
prepare brownie mix as usual. With five minutes left pour choco chips, mini marshmallows, and crumbled graham crackers over the top. Put back in the oven! voila.

Sunday, February 10, 2008


Tomorrow at six am I will be up and busy! This week I am teaching early morning seminary. Really, I think that it would be my dream calling minus the early morning part. The real teacher is on vacation for a week and I eagerly volunteered to take over while she was gone. I really miss teaching and I really miss talking to the crazies in that terrible teenage stage ! How great to be able to teach about something that I love this much!!! The topic is the Old Testament (2Kings)-which makes me a little worried- but I figured that the kids probably don't know any more than me so it can't be that hard. Embarrassingly enough I can say that I haven't read the Old Testament in it's entirety since my mission! Wish me luck. Mostly wish me that I'll wake up on time this whole week.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

don't watch this if you get motion sickness!!!

Today we had our Valentine's Primary Activity! We went to a local retirement center and sang to people.We also made valentines with/for them. I really do love my little primary kids :) I had the grand privilege of riding in the "big gray beast". There are four rows of seats (it's capacity is 15). One of the kids we rode with is actually hiding behind one of the many rows! Our Bishop bought this ginormous thing to transport ward members for all sorts of activities. We got to use it today for the primary.
Serving in the primary has been fabulous because I learn/remember all sorts of songs to sing to Zeb. It still calms him down when he gets crabby or starts crying. When he was sick and at the hospital I'm sure that the nurses were getting pretty sick of hearing me sing the song "Tomorrow" from Annie. Right now his favorite song is "Do as I'm doing". Really he just likes watching me make a fool out of myself by shaking my body all around. Enjoy.

Friday, February 8, 2008

We got zeb's pictures taken before Christmas and I never posted any of them. I was looking through them today and I can't believe how different he is now. I feel like he has changed immensely. He's gotten a lot more hair for sure. Just over the past few days he has become so much more of a person. I cannot wait for him to walk and talk!! He is such a daddy's boy (thank heavens). Kent can't get any sort of studying or schoolwork done at home because Zeb will not leave him alone! This week has been rough on the Toledo Miller's home. Kent has been at school pretty late every night studying for the test he had today, but it is finally over and we have a weekend of no stress or studying!! I was getting pretty dang ornery (and by ornery I mean the Utah definition, not the Ohio one).

Thursday, February 7, 2008

our bathing beauty

Everytime I take a video of Zeb I try and remind myself to not say anything stupid and not make myself sound like an idiot because eventually people are going to watch it. I fail miserably each time. Sorry about my obnoxious voice yelling at Zeb. Just ignore it. Here is our little creature saying "dad" and clapping. He will actually clap when we ask him to. What a smart little rugrat, huh?

I need Ideas!!!

For cooking group this month, the theme is "Romantic foods". I need help deciding what to make!?! I tried out a recipe for BTS cake and it was okay, but I just don't love cake, plus it's kind of anti romantic. I have looked up Aphrodisiac foods and have a list :) Now, I need some good recipes. I also have heart shaped baking dishes, so that could make anything a little more romantic I guess! If you have any ideas, I would love the help. I am open for anything, the recipe doesn't have to include anything from this list! Is there some recipe that you always make on Valentine's day? what do you consider to be romantic food??

Asparagus, Avocado, Bananas, Basil, Chocolate, Carrots, Fennel, Figs, Ginger, Oysters, Pineapple, Strawberries, Truffles, and Vanilla.