Me, walking in on Anja after her nap: Hey honey, did you sleep today, or did you play the whole time?

Anja: I played.

Me: Okay.  Why do you have the fan on?

Anja: I like how it spins.  Look how fast and nice it is spinning!

Me: Aha.  *Leaves room to hang up laundry*

Anja, returning to play: These guys live in their house in North Covania.

Me: Really?  What state is that in?

Anja: State?  Um, it’s next to a store called Truck Roasted.

Me, attempting not to smirk: Ohh…and what do they sell?

Anja, matter-of-factly: They sell trucks and toast.  *pause* Mama, have you ever seen a store that sells trucks and toast?

Me, hiding smile: Nope.


Anja, you are such a funny little thing.  You have several words you pronounce incorrectly.  Daddy (or other people) will sometimes correct you, and I ask them not to.  You have your whole adult life to speak properly, but only for so long will I get to hear things like “lemonlade” and “brushteeth (toothbrush).”

And Just Like That, The Sherman Project was over.

I’m not gonna lie–I’m pretty sad about this post.   Probably sadder than I should be.

Last Monday, the kids and I were at the Minnesota Zoo.  Somewhere between the bathroom and the Minnesota Trail, Anja lost Sherman.  I didn’t notice it until quite a bit later, unfortunately.  I’d been taking quite a few photos, so I just tracked back through them to find the last photo where he was pictured.  We retraced our steps.  No sign of him.  We asked several people working in the area if anyone had turned him in.  No Sherman.  We left a description (even a little sketch) and our contact info at the Guest Services desk in case he turned up.  I have called there four times in the past week to check.  No Sherman.

He had been left at a small group member’s house for two weeks just prior to the incident, so Anja had already been “weaned” of him a little bit, so she isn’t too broken up about it.  However, Husband and I aren’t so easily detached.  We both experienced moments of stress (even a dream) about him in the days following his disappearance.   I still get a little heart-sick when I think of him in a dumpster, covered with garbage, or in the hands of another toddler who won’t understand how special he is.  He was the all-time favorite, go-with-me-everywhere, has-his-own-personality toy to Anja.  I had planned on writing a book about him for her 4th birthday, which now may not even have any significance to her.

Sherman, wherever you are, we sure hope you are still being loved.  We will miss you.

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Easter Pics

We’re reaching that point in the year where I’m doing my bestest just to keep up with the events in our lives and throw a few pictures up on my “virtual scrapbook” here.  My words will be few, but my memories numerous.

The best one I got:
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The worst, approximately 8 seconds later:
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Ah, children…good thing I love you, and good thing God made you so cute. 😉

Our Fish

If you can look at this series and not crack a smile, you’ve got one up on me. I heart bath time with this boy. Husband gives him most of his baths, so every time I get the chance to bathe him I’m amazed at how much he loves water.

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Hammy face.
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Rinsing himself.
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I Like Posts About Books

I’ve been thinking since, oh….2010 or so, that I should write a post with book reviews. Until I get to that, I think I’ll just keep taking shots of my kids reading. ‘Cause it’s easier. 🙂

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I love his little turtle neck. I love his neck, period.

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And there’s that sweet eyebrow raise again.

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The Whole Life Nutrition Elimination Diet: Phases 2 and 3

Here’s a quick update on our progress with the elimination diet. Read more here if you are playing catch up.

Days 10 to 15: Phase 2

On Day 10 we introduced lemons and limes to our diet. We included it in smoothies, in our water, in our salad dressings, and to Husband’s delight, had some lemonade (he likes variety in his beverages). My favorite recipe was a lemon lentil soup.
On Day 13 we added in wheat-free tamari (kind of like soy sauce). We had it on asparagus and greens, in our collard wraps, and on our sunflower burgers.
Neither of us noticed any strong reactions to these foods.

Days 16 to 28: Phase 3

Phase 3 involves reintroduction of foods that sometimes cause irritations in people. We began with root vegetable pancakes (which tasted so delicious! yay, potatoes!) and breakfast greens. I noticed quite a few symptoms related to potatoes, so I am going to re-test those. I ate almost an entire pineapple by myself, though, and had no problems with that! 🙂 We’ve had several meals that we both enjoyed a LOT, including Curried Vegetables with Indian Fried Rice as well as Coconut-Lime Chicken (which we introduced two days before Easter to prepare us for some meat….Husband wanted his ham!). Husband continues to not notice any particular sensitivities and accuses me of hypochondria when I mention any of mine. I think I’m sensitive to bananas as well (boo, because I used to eat them almost every day!).

Overall impressions:
1. Husband’s family has many digestive issues, and he thinks he may have a mild case of IBS. He has trouble digesting most vegetables.
2. We’ve both lost weight on the diet. Not incredible amounts, but enough that we both feel better about our bodies. I’m guessing quite a bit of it was inflammation/water retention. I’ve noticed that my abdomen and face areas have slimmed the most, same with Husband.
3. We’ve decided that we are going to try to eat “Phase 3 style” most of the time with occasional treats, depending on what we find out during the Challenge Phase.
4. The diet continues to be a problem socially. Virtually everything served everywhere contains at least one of the Challenge foods: gluten, oats, corn, soy, dairy, eggs, or yeast. We both hope that none of these produce monumental reactions in us just so we can participate in social functions without feeling like a burden.
5. Things I miss the most: cheese and peanut butter. Sunflower butter and almond butter on rice cakes with dried figs or raisins have been a staple snack for me. Surprisingly, I don’t miss baked goods as much as I anticipated, though we also haven’t had them in the house… 😉

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Collard Wraps with Sunflower Pate

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Sunflower Seed Burger with side of avocado and pear