Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Banana bread and swine flu::

I know no one in their right mind includes swine flu with anything edible in a title. I never said I was in my right mind.
Seriously though, I am finally revealing my banana bread recipe( Nothing fancy, I just like to make a big entrance, not really!) and I wanted to share something I learned about the swine Flu. Hence the unfortunate title!

First the Banana bread Recipe::

You'll need:
Preheated oven ( 350 degrees)
Greased bread pan.
3 to 4, brown super icky bananas.( they make the best flavor)
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour ( sifted)
1/2 cup whole wheat flour (sifted)
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs whisked ( one works fine too)
1 stick butter melted
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
1/2tsp Cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
3/4 cup chopped walnuts ( optional)

How to make it::
Mix dry ingredients together( make a well in the middle)
Mix wet ingredients together in another bowl.
Add wet to dry. Mix enough ( don't over mix) Then add walnuts and mix some more.
Pour batter in your prepared pan. stick in the oven for an hour, or until a tooth pick tells you it's done.


Swine flu::

So I'm pretty freaked out about the swine flu. We so far have one probable case in a Rogers park elementary school. And My husband is a school teacher ( sorta!) Tomorrow is his last day as a student teacher ( Yay!)

So I've been following the news quite closely and here's what I learned.
You can take the same precautions to avoid swine flu just like you do with regular flu. The one main ingredient is wash your hands A LOT! But that's not wthe only thing I learned, No dear friends...Today I learned that it takes 20 seconds to sing "hit the road jack and don't you come back no more no more no more no more 2 rounds) and this is how long you'll need to be washing your hands for, to make sure all the Icky stuff is gone. For kids you can sing with them the alphabet song. Neat huh! See now if it wasn't for the swine flu I wouldn't have learned that today! (I'm not suggesting anything btw, any kind of flu sucks!)

Where I learned that... NPR. Love *A bubbly appearing heart, with the Bubble sound effect*


Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Sewing updates::

Just finished a bed-sheet Pj pants for mama, Yay! Oh no wait a second, yea right, I still need to put an elastic in, I ran out. Rephrase. Almost finished a bed-sheet Pj pants for mama, half yay!

Also started a new project and cut some stuff, and wont tell you what it is until I'm done to keep the suspense going *on going drum roll, until the curtains are open* (It'll be a while I must say, how about a little hint, it's something I've never sewn before..I know I started sewing about what a week back?... Oh well!)

And I bought some fabric on sale a while back and received it yesterday. Lots of possibilities. And photos will be shared once the sun comes out.

Un-sewing related:: we made cardboard slippers this morning, and they tore about 5 minutes after Mei wore them...Expected. Fun while they lasted though! ( and making)

On a different note, I really need to post that banana bread recipe I promised...Tomorrow? No promises this time!


Monday, April 27, 2009

In which I get more time than I can handle::

This afternoon, both Graby and Mei went down for their nap at the same time. And the nap lasted for three sweet hours. What did I do with all this time. Well, I completely and utterly freaked out. I was so overwhelmed with all what I could do and all that needs to be done that I just froze!
I started to get up to do the dishes but then I remembered the piles of laundry so while heading in that direction I thought about dinner, so I figured dinner is important. But I could blog, or finish this sewing project I started about a week ago, or maybe I could even dare dream about reading a little. I could clean the house, or jump in the shower... What would you have done if you were me?

I froze for a good half an hour completely freaked out. Then I slapped my self ( not really, I'm not one of those people or am I?*raising my eyebrows up and down*)
Then I did a little bit of everything delete reading and sewing from the above list and left blogging till right now( 8:30PM).

So since you've all been kind enough to read the last three paragraphs, why don't you tag along for some scenes from our weekend::

An early breakfast at the yard, with the hope to read::Rainbow after a wet cloud passing by( after the rainbow disappeared Graby kept calling after it to come back!)::A cook out ( Kofta!Yumm!)::Rainy day Alpaca festival in Madison WI( Alpaca's are the sweetest thing, they hum!)::the softest Alpaca yarn ever!::Winnie the Pooh awesome pop-up book( I love pop-ups)::And last but not least, a photo worthy gas station sign on our way back from Madison. (It reads: Frog Parking only, all others TOAD!) yea I'm silly that way, I enjoy stuff like that.
Have a good one!

Annd peace!

Friday, April 24, 2009

In love *sigh*...

As you all know by now, I'm in love...

And not any kind of love, the love that makes you wait all day for those alone snuck out hours with your lover. The sewing machine ( what were you all thinking? And hubby, don't get jealous!)

Seriously, I've been having lots of fun with my very new discovered passion for sewing( did I hear my thoughts right? I said I love sewing didn't I? Oh well)

So naturally I've been checking out the fabric store A LOT. and Also some sewing books. There's this one (two) I've been drooling over ever since it came out and I skimmed through the projects and closed my eyes and dreamed. I am currently not buying anything 'cause I need to restrain myself a little. But now it's out of my system. ( Also secretly hoping*not so secretly* that "someone" reads this post in time for mothers day, shameless I know, what to do*sigh*)


Thursday, April 23, 2009

A few of my favorite things...

I was going to blog about my banana bread recipe today, but for reasons I won't disclose I need one of these posts again.

So here are a few of my favorite things at the moment::

Sleeping ( I don't get much of it) I seriously haven't had uninterrupted sleep ( As in I wake up every two hours) since the end of 2006. I sleep for a total of 6 hours ( and thats on a good day)

Made up language conversations with Toddler girl ( Her blog name is going to be Mei. Thank you Saritta for your input, read her comment) One time we went for up to half an hour!

Sleeping ( oh I said that already, well, it never hurts to say it again)

Sewing with my new sewing machine, I'm currently working on something. I might share once I'm done. I'm out of thread at the moment so god know how long that'll take to be re-stocked!

Graby's complete lack of interest in crawling, and complete enthusiasm in walking ( I hold her from under her armpit and she goes for it... for the record I am going to eat her toes, starting with her webbed ones. Too cute!)

Graby's love for her vocal chords... she'll be a singer this one. She goes like this: AAAAAAAAA... OOOOOOO... MMMMMMM... AAAAAAAAAA... AAAOOOOOOO... GGHHHHHHH... and for a nice finale EEEEEEEEEEK *shattered glass everyhwere*. ( I didn't say she'll be a good singer!)



Monday, April 20, 2009

A year of mornings::36/365

A couple of days back we were blessed with lovely weather. So of course I snatched the chance and strapped the girls in the double stroller, and off we went. This photo was taken on my way back home. I looked up and that's what I saw.
You can check the rest of my mornings if you click on the photo. It should take you to my flickr photo stream.


On a different note. Have you been checking my changing list of Awesome-ness side bar. If you haven't check out "her morning elegance", my favorite music video yet. I love the way they shot it in stop motion. Different than any stop motion I've seen. My favorite part is when she falls and dives into the water. The song is lovely too.


This part is added:

I just noticed I blogged twice today. Hmm.
I get confused when I blog in the day time, 'cause I usually don't have time to blog during the day. so how about you read that post tomorrow... Cool!

New skirt::

I've been meaning to blog about the skirt I made in my beginners sewing class for some time now. I was waiting till I hand hemmed it. And I just managed to finish that last night. This morning I added a swirly embroidered thread in to break the color a bit. It's too Grey! And I won't lie to you, I did choose a cheapo fabric to start with. I didn't think a first skirt was going to turn out that good, but it did. In retrospect, now I wish I had invested a bit more in the fabric...Oh well!

Lot's of photos for details ( yes I am very proud, and no I won't be able to recreate a skirt like that again. I need to take that class again!)

I chose a red zipper 'cause a Grey zipper is... BORING!

The skirt is an A-line skirt copied from a pattern. It's nice and snug from the top. The cut would show better if I modeled it for you, but for obvious reasons, I couldn't do that! ( If you need more hints re-read my blog name...Annd, we're clear!)


Thursday, April 16, 2009

National Library Week

Because of my baby's nose condition, which is slowly but surely clearing out, now when she sleeps she purrs like a cat. Too cute!

Today's post isn't about that though. No, don't worry I already told you that story!

Let's try again...

Tuesdays are our mommy toddler library day. It's the official story time day at our neighborhood library. So, weather permitting, we walk to our public library. If not, the train it is! ( my toddler girl calls it the cat bus. MEOW! yes, she meows all the way from our stop to the library's stop! Speak of keeping a low profile. Well the head scarf doesn't help either. Oh well, celebrity life here I come!)

Today, however is not a Tuesday, as all you grownups might have noticed (hopefully!) ... But she doesn't know that(shh, it's a secret!)
No, really the weather was nice, so I figured a nice stroll to the library doesn't harm any one ( did I mention how much I love our Public Library. I also honestly think Librarians are real life super heroes. Why, you might ask? Well, they're just like Superman, they're both nerd-y and cool at the same time. Also they get excited when checking out a book like this one. I love librarians. I said that already didn't I?)

So, apparently this week is National Library Week. So in addition to playing with all the cool stuffed animals, drawing with crayons and reading cool books. We also got to have cookies( toddler girl could've finished the whole tray, but luckily mommy meddled and saved some for other patrons)Annnd, free book markers. I was so tempted to get more than just the one, but eventually did the right thing. I chose the coolest one though, don't you agree? ( I always need book markers. I tend to read five books at the same time, and mark my pages with torn pieces of paper or old receipts. And yes, you noticed right. The book mark is already bent, I have a two year old, what can I say?)

So in celebration of this special occasion, I am naming 5 things I love about our Public Library:: ( you can play too if you want)

1. Story time rules ( you get to watch grown up sing and dance and make complete idiots out of themselves. I'm pretty much talking about myself here. Good times! Really)

2. Our awesome library bags( shown in the photo) I only found it at our neighborhood small branch. They make themed bags, including about 7 to 8 books of the same theme, and they include one Dvd. This time we got the family themed bag. ( they: meaning our wonderful librarians)

3. I don't need to buy books unless necessary. I even find new-ish sewing books like this one. And I also found one of my all time favorite movies at our local branch too ( the opening credit song really makes me smile!)

4. librarians( what's not to like) But I particularly love our small branch's librarians, they know everyone by name. Even the homeless people that come by. ( They also know my name, and I have a weird name for Americans)

5. How libraries represent a harmonious social system that actually works! Everyone from the patrons that return the books, the librarians that maintain the library, the janitor that keeps it clean, and the government that gives it money ( even if it's not enough money, it still works!) Wonderful. Also I can't see a greener building( not a physical building, I can't quite put my hand on the word I want to use, suggestion?) than a library.

(FYI: for some bizzarre reason my spell check stopped working, hence all the spelling mistakes!) I spelled Bizzarre wrong didn't I?


Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Here are a couple of questions for you. How do I copyright my images and content, do I just say "all images and content are copyrighted" and magically it becomes so?

Also how do people add those dotted lines when they want to add something unrelated to their post?

Unrelated here's a little something for all you vintage sewing machine lovers out there! maybe I should go to Saudi Arabia and sell my 100 years old singer machine and make a lot of money ha!



Every one in our quarters either has the sniffles or a sore throat at the moment. Add some coughs, sneezes, throw ups...etc (fun times!). For now Mama bear is the only survivor Alhamdulilah (all praise to God). Those maternal anti-bodies are working their charm I suppose MashaAllah! ( God is the protector)

With all that said, I haven't been sleeping for the past three nights. I am a little to blame*shy face* ( I go to bed every night around 1 am since the machine arrived!)
But seriously, the girls noses are like water fountains during the day... You know what that means during the night?...Yup. Clogged like a cork in a bottle. Resulting of course in mama bear sitting up all night propping up the baby's head so she'll stop crying and go to sleep.

Last night however something happened. I think I started hallucinating! ( three sleepless nights... Go figure)

How it Happened::

Toddler girl had one of those scary coughs( you know, the one where you scratch your throat coughing while sounding like a barking dog) So I honestly thought there's some weird animal in My toddlers bedroom. I even started seeing the animal through the door ( super mama!).
I wanted to jump and save my girl. But I seriously froze. I yelled "don't worry, Mommy is coming".
The result: waking one more baby up for the night!

I yelled at the top of my lungs for my husband, whose been sleeping in the downstairs bedroom for the past two nights. Opting for some uninterrupted sleep( Ha!)
He came running to the rescue.

Yes Last night I woke up every single soul in the house (bugs and spiders included!) and no one went back to sleep... Sorry!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

right now...

A new/old machine put to good use...

The tote bag is from this book . The handles are yet to be hand sewn.

The draw string bag is from this tutorial ( I added some dragon fly stamps, just for fun).

I couldn't wait till morning to get better light for the shots. I figured it's easier to blog when everyone is asleep. Don't you agree?

Please don't be fooled by the photos. My stitches are all over the place. I'm not showing details to save my face. I'm still learning.

And right now I'm off to bed.


oops, I forgot to mention that the tote bag fabric came from an old bed sheet found when I was thrifting. Only cost me 2 dollars, and there's plenty more fabric to play with. How cool is that!

Friday, April 10, 2009

The day after

I'm still recovering from our Aqiqa party last night, which Alhamdulilah ( All praise to God) was a success!
How we fit 45 people ( yes. thats the correct number!) all at once in our tiny little house remains to be a mystery to me! I guess it's just the baraka( good mojo) of the event.

I'm sharing the three photos I managed to take.

Do you see this shape that formed on the foil from gravy drippings ( some sort of a bird. Yea?) I'm told it's a good omen from my Iraqi baby sitter . And a good omen it was. Alhamdulilah.


Wednesday, April 8, 2009

I should've...

Listened to my significant other, when he specifically told me not to stay up all night; playing with my new vintage sewing machine... (more about the machine later)

Stopped, when it was only two hours past my bedtime...

Used the good quality wrong color thread, instead of the matching fabric color poor quality thread, from the beginning (the three hour ordeal, would've taken half an hour. Precious time, taken from precious sleep!)

Delayed reading the manual, and figuring out the machine in days to come. Nope I'm a very stubborn gal... Apparently!

I don't regret...

Doing all that:)

Let the celebration begin!


Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Good news everyone! ( insert futurama's professor voice)

My toddler girl is officially day-time potty trained!
Now all I need is to figure out how to make her pull up and down her pants. then she should be all set.

By the way I know she'll probably hate me when she's older for posting that photo. But I get to make the decisions now right? Oh dear...Toddler girl, please don't hate me!


Yea, I had to take the photo out I couldn't live with myself!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Scenes from our weekend::

I've been slightly (insanely) freaking out about Graby's Aqiqa party.
I guess I forgot to mention on this space that we are hosting this Thursday (Yikes!) an Aqiqa party( Slaughtering an animal in sacrifice for a new born.Cooking it. Then sharing it with loved ones and those in need) for my relatively new born.

Soooooo...This weekend has been all about that. Shopping. Shopping. And some craft time for Toddler girl and for the party.

The puppets are made from this foamy paper I bought ages ago and never used. I drew whatever my toddler told me( yes,that's Totoro... Obsession!). Then cut the shapes, and glued them on a stick (can't get simpler than that! The bee's wings didn't make it in the final cut!)

The Party banner is made from the same foamy paper on hand. The Arabic letters I had from before( purchased at Devon). They were never used due to poor quality. I'm glad I didn't get rid of them. They worked great for the banner. The two sheep on the side are hand drawn by moi, then cut and glued. The whole thing is held together by free-cycled ribbon as you can see in the photo.

Also sharing some things I enjoyed this weekend::

Tulips. They make me smile.

Dinner in new pottery.(I know there's still light out. Crazy Americans have their dinners at 6:00pm:) What can I say!)

Annnnd...Late dinner in-front of a camp fire in our yard( we waited till both babies were down for the night. And, yes we had the monitor with us) One of my hubby's many great ideas.

Anything you lovelies care to share from your weekend? ( I guess the boys won't share anything now! It's OK, boys can be lovelies too!)


Friday, April 3, 2009

I learned...

1.How to make a toddler beg for sleep::

Keep her entertained for most of a 3 hour car trip to only fall asleep 5 minutes before arrival. Then wake her up to meet her much loved and anticipated "Geddo". Five minutes later you'll hear her utter these magical words that she will never utter again maybe for the rest of her childhood years.
"lets go to sleep, RIGHT NOW!" . Then after sliding her into her tent crib you'll hear" turn off the lights". 2 seconds later you'll hear " inhale, exhale and repeat". she's down for the night. Never do this again. Alas one time is heart breaking enough!

2. A new word::

Hawk a loogie. "Graby" totally "hawked a loogie" at Grandpa's place. It was a very forceful one too! Nice:)

3. Even though you get spoiled rotten at your in-laws place, it's always nice to come back home.

4. Ebay is way too nerve wrecking for me! ( more about that later)

5. You definitely need baking soda and baking powder for the banana bread to rise. Oh well. Nobody learns for free!


Thursday, April 2, 2009

I'm back

From Madison and I'm pretty tuckered out. But I still wanted to say hello to my blog and to you guys. So this is going to be a short one.

How about a photo from my morning today?