What is wilson silverleaf? We're organitarians; it's best for our bodies and the planet. We cloth diapered Nina for the same reason. We drive a hybrid car & wish we could afford solar panels on our house. I'm a strong advocate for homebirth, full-time mom, & also a movie junkie. We don't have a tv though; we watch dvds on our computer. We love contradancing. I garden & knit; Larry's a puzzle lover & plays fantasy football.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

first ice cream cone

Sorry for this retro post, but I didn't have time to do it while I was packing. Arwyn bought Nina her first ice cream cone all of her own. Click here for more in this set.

gruelling trip

As you probably know, we are spending the next three months in Bristol, UK. I am so glad I have been blogging, as it's a great way to chronicle our experiences as temporary expats.

None of us really slept on the way here, the flight to cincinnati was uneventful (I watched "Man of the Year" and was thoroughly unimpressed).

The flight to London, however, was really hard. Nina has had a cold and cough, so that might have contributed to her difficulty in sleeping. At any rate, she only slept about 3 hours of the overnight flight, so none of us slept more than that. Then we had to get on the train and then change trains with 5 big bags, a stroller, and our carry-on luggage. It wasn't so fun. But as trips go, it could have been worse, we had no trouble getting through security and the flight attendants were all very sweet.

Nina finally fell asleep in the 5 minute taxi ride from the train station to our apartment (I'm not sure I'll ever be able to call it a flat). It was amazing, one minute she was sitting up talking to me and the next she was flopping back and I had to catch her.

I decided to try to help Larry get the luggage in to the apartment, so I put her down on the floor in the lobby; she just kept on sleeping, so I couldn't resist taking a picture of her.

Sunday, February 18, 2007


Nina bought these for me; I can't believe how beautiful they are.

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Saturday, February 17, 2007


I write for The Soccer Mom Vote; here is my post for this month:

I love the idea of bento boxes, each little section holding a different type of food, all separate. It's really perfect for those who prefer that their food not touch. Laptop Lunchboxes* has the cutest bento-type boxes with little containers with lids. I love the idea, but I am no longer storing food in plastic containers, so I thought I'd drop the company a line to see if they were interested in making one out of stainless. So here's what I wrote:

I LOVE your lunch boxes! But I am eliminating plastic food storage from my
life (as are most of myfriends). Is there any chance you will be offering a
lunchbox with stainless steel containers any time in the near future? I would
personallynot mind a plastic lid, though maybe silicone would work?
Thanks, Lorien
And here's what they wrote back:
Hi Lorien.Thanks for your suggestions. I'm glad you like our lunch box, but am
sorry to hear that you may not be using it any more. We have had other customers
interested in a stainless version, but we don't anticipate creating one any time
soon. The process is very costly and we do not think enough people would pay the
money that we would have to charge to make it worthwhile for us. We also have
not heard of any study that shows that polypropylene leaches any chemicals into
food and therefore are confident that our lunch box is safe to use. As Dr. Dean
Edell has noted on his radio program, there are a lot of other things that you
should be more worried about than the plastic that your food touches. I'm not
sure I will change your mind, but think about it...the air we breathe has got to
be more toxic from exhaust fumes than the polypropylene containers we place our
food in. Best Regards, Tamara Cummings, Obentec, Inc.
Condescend much? As if it's impossible to think about air quality AND the containers I store my food in. It's exactly that type of thinking that creates an environment of apathy. The problem's too huge, so I just won't think about it and maybe it will go away. I'm just not that type of person; I'm not wired that way. If there is an injustice or wrong that's on my radar, I will try to right it in any way I can, however small. Even if it's just talking about it. I happen to think that talking about issues and letting people know what I have found out goes a long way toward change. Isn't that what we're doing here?
And yeah, I can walk and chew gum at the same time, so thinking about toxins leaching into food and the toxic air we breathe, at the same time, even, should be a cinch (I do drive a hybrid, FYI, trying to do my bit with the exhaust fumes).
Here is a list of articles on plastic coming into contact with food:
Anyone have any ideas on how to do away with my Camelbak lexan bottle? It's just so easy, what with the straw and all...it's the only plastic I can't seem to kick. I have seen the Kleen Kanteen and Sigg, but they don't have the straw. It's key to my water consumption. Here are some of the solutions I have come up with in getting rid of all of my plastic storage containers:
IKEA (they have a lot of wonderful sizes and shapes of this glass container)
Target sells this set of Pyrex containers--fridge to oven!
Crate & Barrel sells a whole lot of really great sizes of glass dish with plastic lid, here's a smattering of what they offer, inexpensive!
I also got a really great set of stainless steel tiny containers with lids at Target, but I can't find them online. They're about an ounce each, perfect for sauce or dressing.
*The laptop luchbox can be seen in the height of its full glory on The Vegan Lunchbox. The lunches this woman prepares her son are so beautiful and creative; I'm not a vegan but I check in there regularly to see her creations.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

anya's sweater

Elaine won the kit for this sweater from Vintage Purl and I offfered to knit it up for her; it provided some distraction on our trip to Florida. All in all I didn't really care for the way the pattern was written and somehow I managed to make a hood that didn't fit (which Natalie figured out for me), but I think it came out really well. The yarn is 70% New Zealand merino and 30% silk.

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superbowl party

Nina, Anya, and Lily know how to watch the superbowl properly!

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being a mom is exhausting

Nina fell asleep giving Sidra boob the other day

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Monday, February 12, 2007


Nina wanted to hold baby Dante the other day. She's convinced he came out of her belly, but since he weighs almost as much as she does, I'm skeptical.

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I made these maple pecan scones to take to a friend's house the other day.

4 cups flour (I used 2 cups whole wheat and 2 cups white)
3/4 cup coconut oil, in slightly solid state--should resemble butter, in pieces (if you use butter, cut it into 1 tablespoon chunks. The coconut oil should be similar)
1 cup granulated maple syrup
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
pumpkin pie spice
dash salt
1 cup pecans, chopped (I do it in the food processor)
1 cup cold milk--I used soy to make it vegan

Combine all ing. except milk in food processor and process until mixture climbs up the walls of bowl. Turn into another bowl and add milk, mixing with hands until dough holds together and can be rolled out. Roll out (on bed of flour to avoid sticking) and cut into pie wedges or use a biscuit cutter. Bake on lightly greased cookie sheet at 400 for 12-15 minutes or until cooked (I like them a bit crispy, so I bake until browned).

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Nina decided to have a picnic last night and set it up all by herself. It's very charming, I think, but I still can't figure out whether the dolls are guests or food.

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Thursday, February 08, 2007

what a good mama!

Larry's aunt Rena bought Nina this sling for her baby. As you can see, Nina loves it (and so does Beep).

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Nina was in bed with us this morning; after nursing for a few minutes, this is the conversation we had:
Nina: I want the other one, mama
Me: not right now
Nina: mama, I WANT it
Me: they're my boobs, Nina
Nina: no, mama, they're for BABIES

Tuesday, February 06, 2007


Nina screamed at me for a total of at least 3 hours today. Pick me up, put me down, carry me, but not in a carrier, don't sit down, feed me but not anything you offer. And we're not talking about any normal decibel and tone here; it was the horror movie scream for 3 hours. It only stopped while we were hanging out with friends and during the all-too-short nap. And did I mention she was so busy screaming at one point that she peed on the floor? And that when I put her in the bath, she pooped? One nice thing about all the screaming, though, was that I was able to stick a finger in there and find that she has two molars coming in. So at least there's a good reason for the insanity. Let's hope it passes soon. In the meantime, I am going to resort to children's Motrin for some night-time sanity. Around the clock screaming doesn't really work for me.


According to this article, my love of cashmere and the planet are completely in line with each other. Don't you love that?

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Nina likes to help me water the plants

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Saturday, February 03, 2007

the horror

My friend made this video; I think it's really powerful.


I always have one, in one shape or another. It used to be scribbled on paper, or just in my mind, or in a book. Then I discovered Froogle, which is useful, but not everything is there. Well, friends, now there is Wists. You download a simple icon to your browser and POOF! Anything on the web is a click away from being on your wish(wists)list. They even give you a clever little scrolling doohicky you can embed in your blog. It's right there, to the left. Clever, huh? Now go make your wish list so I can get you a gift!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

project madness

This sweater has been brewing in my mind for a long time, maybe a year or more. I have even started it more than once, with different yarns. It's finally no longer a fantasy; I think it turned out really well. I used a silk/rayon blend that I had picked up to weave with for the main part and Firenze for the trim. The pattern is from the Bernat free pattern page. It calls for a hood, and I knitted one, but somehow I manage not to get hoods right, so I scrapped it and just picked up stitches for a collar.

Yep, those are the fab pants Jayne made again!

great hat!

My grandpa got me this hat when he lived in Israel. It has survived nicely, don't you think?

I made Larry a cake last week for his birthday. Nina helped! Thanks to Kathy P. for the recipe. Click the picture for more like it.