Monday, September 22, 2014

Five (Mostly) Food Things at 5:00

  1. My kids often elect to delay gratification.  This is not news to me.  What amused me today, was to discover that one of their favourite kinds of crackers qualifies as a treat worth enjoying slowly (see photo, up therrr').  I assure you these do not remain on their plates due to dislike or lack of appetite!  Bless them.  And saving in tandem, too.  My chest got hot and airtight at the sight.
  2. We usually eat our main meal of the day around 1pm.  This works for us -- largely because of Haki's work schedule (he's usually home for lunch but leaves before dinner) -- but I also have more motivation and patience around this time.  Come the evening hours and I very often think a quick sandwich or some such small solution sounds super.    Sssssth.
  3. Aside: the plates the girls' crackers are being saved on?  I picked 'em up free from a box out front of a local Sallies (I was only there to drop off, by the way /bow). Haki's thoughts on these plates?  Nana plates.  Me?  I think they are glorious.
  4. We are currently reducing are sugar intake.  Isn't everyone? 
  5. I am still eating seriously large volumes of food (including The Salad).  Mia is still nursing in seriously large volumes.  I am worried about the latter eventually ceasing and the former not getting the memo.  Ah!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

I'm here for the food
The Temporary Bride: A Memoir of Love and Food in Iran, Jennifer Klinec
New to bookstore shelves this month -- a memoir set in Iran.  A memoir with love and food. 
Sold; I wanted to read it.  And read it, I did.  Thank you, Hachette.

The verdict: The food content was great for me.
The rest:  Definitely got a strong response from me.  A mixed response;
  • It was difficult for me to be given access to Iran and its culture laced with such strong overtones of disapproval.  Yeah, it's a memoir, so there is going to be opinion, but I guess I was disappointed to find that that opinion was so overt, discrediting many conservative values that I personally respect about Iran's social norms.  Example?  Klinec romantises sexual permissiveness in more than one instance, and even voices within dialogue and memory, that "Something has gone [right] in her life" that she has lost her virginity despite never having married.  I understand I am a conservative human.  I get that most people consider it acceptable and even preferred to have "been laid" by their mid-30s...but lauding sexual experience outside of wedlock as the Western way bugged me.  It still bugs me.  I have little issue with reading about someone different (and far more liberal than me).  It helps me grow.  I take issue when that person claims to represent me.
  • I found it difficult to empathise.  Her life choices are just so different.  The interest in solitude? Loved hearing about it.  A fractured family that still works in many ways?  Interesting. Different passions?   Great to hear about.  Adultery as a comfort?  Meh, you've lost me.
  • The clumsiness of the love affair made for a very authentic-feeling tale.  Sometimes the awkwardness (and outright rudeness) of the communication crossed over into outright odd -- sometimes tactlessness seemed to read as charm (for the characters, at least!).   I wanted to be swept away by the romance.  I wrinkled my nose, instead.  There is some fairly crude content.
  • I was surprised by how short a time the lovers spent together (with little affection, included) before they were expressing their love in such absolute terms!  I am a romantic (and was hasty to declare love, myself!), but I still found myself going, "REALLY!?"
  • Although I didn't find myself thinking, "I am just loving this!" I did want to read it all, quick-smart.  I needed to know how it all was going to play out!
  • I think foodies who are also fans of Rainbow Rowell may just find this to be the jackpot! Sound like you?  Head out and pick up your copy in bookstores today (RRP $39.99).

Monday, September 15, 2014

A Second Slump

Tower Lord, Anthony Ryan
I come bearing mixed news.

The good:
  • I am very confident that most die-hard, brotherhood fans of Blood Song will still be pleased with this sequel.  I know for a fact, that someone I shared these books with went out and bought their own copies before they'd even finished reading the second book.  So The Brotherhood is real. 
The not-so-good:
  • I am not numbered among them.
The low-down:
  • Our hero, Vaelin, becomes Tower Lord in this book.  I feel I'm not giving too much away here...ya?  Given the err...title?  Now, this is where the misleading might begin; Vaelin (Tower Lord) is not the only voice in this novel.  He's not even the main voice.  Ryan has elected to fairly evenly split the narrative not twice, nor thrice, not four times, but into FIVE freakin' people's accounts.  I'm not going to speculate about author motives here.  I am going to say: I struggled.  Initially, I was irritated that I was spending so little time with the legend of this heroic fantasy brand.  Then, worse yet (I think), I came to prefer the others' stories, and yawned whenever we returned to the Tower Lord's.  That can't be good.
  • Book 2 is even darker than Book 1 -- which may be a selling point for some -- but for me, this made it even harder to wade through.  I have a fairly low tolerance for disturbing content, and this book was up there on the freaky-deaky scales, both in the present narrative, and flashbacks...both acts upon villains and the innocent...both upon humans and animals. 
  • And there's not enough humour to brighten it, for my taste.
  • However, I can see that the violence is woven into a thoughtful story, and wouldn't call it gratuitous.  But I'd call it disturbing.  Again.
  • The sensual references are also intensified, and include violent references.  Not for me.
  • And, like Book 1, there are so. many. names. of people, places and political thingzzzz that I find it hard work.  
  • Haki -- he loves uber-complex (headache complex) worlds.  He still found the book disappointing, as well.  For him?  He felt the conclusion was over the top.  He also had little patience for so many story-lines, even if they do come together. 
  • Conclusion: I wanted out of this book so bad.  I was too impatient for it.  It took me months to get to really giving it a chance because I kept tapping out, exasperated.  Sorry.  Ryan Brotherhood?  You'll still love it, and more for the upped anti- in respect to gore, darkness, sex and detail.  Good luck to ye'.
Disagree with me.  Go ahead.  Buy it -- it's in bookstores now! (RRP $37.99)

I do like the cover.  Ha.

Blood Song review here.

(Review copy supplied by Hachette)

Sunday, September 14, 2014


(The ones where I post something about all three girls.)
Last Sunday at Gamma's (the MIL's). 
We came with Thyme on our hands.../snort.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

I want to eat you up, kid

 At 15.5 months...
  • ...she slurs a bunch of words (aside from our names); cracker (kaka), I love you (ahowooo), thank you (hahu), more please (mohee), hi, hello (hewo), bye-bye (ba-bye).  She says Esky's name a lot.
  • ...Mia talks to cats, usually sternly.
  • ...she nods with the top half of her body.
  • ...Mia climbs ladders and crosses swing-bridges with confidence, flying down high slides with  or without her older sisters, fearlessly.
  • ...she suggestively brings a pair of shoes to me every morning when we head to the kitchen for breakfast -- the kid loves going outside.  If I return them to the shoe shelf she is melodramatic about her disappointed body language.
  • ...Mia is often in her helmet -- whether riding some wheels or no.  Helmet sliding?  Sure.  Helmet wandering?  Why not?
  • ...she plays well with Esky and Ivy -- often giggling off in a room somewhere together.
  • ...Mia is still nursing like a fiend.  Like a fiend! 
  • ...she is also pretty loud.
I can barely stand it.

The last time I posted a Mia pic (just over Age 1)
And the last video of her (just under Age 1)

We turned her carseat around, on a road trip to Queenstown a few weeks ago in the hopes it would increase her attention span.  She spewed soon thereafter.  Legally, she's been okay to face the front since her birthday, but we know extended rear-facing is encouraged.  It was front-facing today, when I took these pictures.

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