Thursday, October 10, 2013

For the Love of Pumpkins

It's been a heavy morning.  What began as simply working on a couple letters and emails on my sisters behalf (we're trying to get some things together to send on to hospitals in hopes of finding a doctor to take on her complicated case) turned into reading past things I've written about her story.  This lead to reading some of her old blog posts on her health stuff.  This lead to an emotional start to the day.  Luckily I am home by myself as I am doing this.  Except for the poor sprinkler guy who showed up to a red eyed girl listening to sappy music while she typed.  He was polite enough to ignore this and go about his business.  Anyways...the point of all this rambling is I need to go for something more light-hearted now.  Therefore, I begin with my new found love of pumpkins.

Before I never really saw much use for pumpkins beyond the annual jack-o-lantern carving.  And then one year we found we had accidentally grown them in our garden.  One of the previous years jack-o-lanterns survived the compost pile and sprouted the next year into a dozen pumpkins.  Now, these weren't huge carving pumpkins so I decided to try to do something with them.  After some research I found out how to cook the pumpkins to get to the goods inside.  My first attempt to cook with them was to be a pumpkin pie.  My absolute least favorite pie and possibly dessert of all.  I always found it slimy, smelly and gross.  With encouragement from Ava who had tried some at a school party I thought I would give making a pumpkin pie from scratch a try...maybe it would taste better.  This is where the crush began.  I started to look at pumpkin pie a different actually tasted good.  And, the texture when not out of a can was creamy and delicious.  Throughout the past couple of years it has turned into a full on love affair and I look forward to our pumpkins come fall.  Yesterday I made my first pumpkin bread for the season, oh I love it so.
I use a recipe from the Simply Recipe fav.  

I love the process of scraping out the seeds, baking the pumpkins and scooping out the pulp.  After blending it having a beautiful dark orange puree ready to be turned into bread.  I love when it's cool outside and the oven is on and the smell of pumpkin fills the house.  It feels beyond cozy and appropriate for this time of year.  I will sacrifice a few more of our pumpkins for cooking.  The rest will wait for our Halloween party when they will be hidden throughout our backyard.  Kids will giggle with flashlights as they go on a scavenger hunt that night.  Yep, I have totally fallen for pumpkins and I'm so into fall right now.  Summer who?  I'm digging right now.  (Ask me again in three months and I'll totally be singing a different tune)

Onto other happy things...

I got to join Layla on her first field trip of the year and I loved seeing my social butterfly with her friends.
This girl needs her mama much less than my Ava.  When I got the email there was a field trip that needed parent volunteers I immediately changed my work schedule so I could go.  Ava has always asked me to go on field trips so I naturally assumed Layla would like me to join her.  After school when I asked if she wanted me to go along I full expected "Yay, of course mommy I want you to come, yay! yay! yay!"  What I got was "Um, I don't care, if you want to you can".  
Bam.  She brought me down a notch or two.  
My girls are so very different.  It throws me occasionally because parenting one who is very sensitive, tender and quiet is different than one who is outgoing and independent.  I have to try to find a way to nurture each of their strengths and they are such different things.  In the case of the field trip I decided she's six years old and only in first grade, I can't totally cramp her style yet so I'm going.  Plus, I like her teacher so I could just hang out with her if Layla ignored me.  Of course as the field trip approached Layla told me she was excited I was coming with her and she even held my hand part of the way there.  I love watching her flourish with her little group of friends...they are all giggles and smiles.  Happy girls forming friendship bonds.  Some of the most important friendships they will have.

Also this week was school picture day so my girls got all dolled up...

Hair was curled and outfits were laid out the night before.  I had to snap this shot before because who knows what they looked like when the actual pictures were taken.  A couple of recesses can really take the curl out of a girl.  I look at this photo and they seem so grown up.  My babies.  I love who they are growing into.  

Ava was playing with my phone the other day while we were sitting at tap class for her sister.  She wouldn't let me see what she was doing.  Since we have yet to enter the world of Facebook or Internet scariness I wasn't worried about what she was doing.  This is what I found when I got my phone back...

Oh, my little lover.  

That is all.  Short, sweet, simple and happy.

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