Thursday, November 30

Pick Me

Also, I know it wasn't really about the prizes. But I really want a prize. I enjoyed the challenge of blogging everyday, and I know the family enjoyed the stories and pictures. But please give me a prize Mrs. Kennedy. I love to win stuff and even though it is random and not based on merit it will satisfy my competitive streak.

Day 30

It feels like I should have something monumental to say on my thirtieth consecutive day of posting but I think I am dry. Not that there aren't more cute pictures of Matilda to post, but that just seems like a cop-out. So instead a list of random musings, questions, statements:
  • In order to complete all my ambitious Christmas project I think I need to hire an elf, preferably an elf with better sewing skills than me.
  • We are very much looking forward to our trip home to visit family in January.
  • We are even sadder to be staying in LA for the holidays and missing our family. If anyone has any recommendations of festive activities to keep us distracted from our sadness your input would be much appreciated.
  • The back-up dessert of the month was (thankfully) a success. Stay tuned for future installments.
  • I have not run in weeks. I cannot even remember the last time we (Matilda and BOB and I) tried to go running. I really need to rectify that situation before the holiday pounds add up.
  • OK, I give up - here's your cute picture from the new (free!) playtime we discovered today at a local community center. It is a huge gym full of toys where the kids can just run wild. The best part is I don't have to re-direct Matilda every three minutes like at home.

Wednesday, November 29

More "Winter" Practice

We got these mittens for Matilda's upcoming trip to visit winter, but have been trying them out on our evening walks in the breezy 40-degree weather this week. They are like little straightjacket mittens with no thumbhole, which you think would make them easier to get on her flappy, protesting little hands. I put them on mid-way through our walk home from the library this evening and her response was about like a dog with a cone on his head.

First she tried rubbing her hands together. Then she tried biting them off. Finally she discovered if she waved her arms long enough they would eventually fly off. I am sure we were quite a sight walking all the way home with her flapping like mad strapped on the front of me.

Tuesday, November 28

For Grandma

Taken post-bath last night - modeling her new "winter" boots.

Sandy Diaper Terror Level

We have just upgraded the Sandy Diaper Terror Level from orange to red. We are currently three (four?) days post beach trip and the amount of sand coming out the other end just appears to be increasing. More research is required to prove my theory (i.e. feeding Matilda more sand), but I believe sand quantity and diaper stink are positively correlated variables. While the diaper situation has been fine up to now, I am officially starting the count down to potty training - bring on the temporary tattoos.

Monday, November 27

Eight Months

Matilda turned eight months old 30 minutes ago!!!
I took her to visit my old office today for the monthly weigh in and she is at 19lb 12oz. The weight gain seems to have slowed down now that she spends her entire day tearing in and out of rooms, over the furniture, and around the playground.

This week she just started putting her arms up to signal she wants to be picked up. It is the cutest thing and we can't help but drop everything to pick her up when she asks. Although yesterday I saw her do it when she was just playing in the corner, then look around, and then go back to playing - like she was just testing it out.

This month she is standing up on everything and really extending her reach:

Standing in the kitchen sucking on a dish towel. I am sure my great aunt Millie wouldn't approve, she would yell if you even threw the dish towel over your shoulder.

Standing up looking for me from the pack n' play.

And just plain standing up having a grand old time.

We left Matilda with babysitters, our friends Sarah and Gaurav, for the first time this month while Tim and I had a "date night." Matilda really didn't seem to notice the difference.

Matilda will tolerate being read to now and maybe even enjoys it. She no longer just tries to bat the book out of your hand so she can suck on it.

She celebrated lots of firsts. Her first "big" holidays with Halloween and Thanksgiving.

First trip in the shopping cart.

First swim lesson.

First trip to the Observatory.

What a great family I have. Each month that passes we have more fun with her and continue to be amazed.

Sunday, November 26

Bittersweet Chocolate Truffles Rolled in Spices

Last year I made these truffles as party favors for the tea party I threw for my girlfriends with all my misguided nesting energy. My Mom was there to enjoy them but has requested the recipe to make herself this year. I was pleased to discover the recipe online. Not only did I not have to search through the stacks of magazines to find it, but I didn't even have to type it up. While I am tempted to make them again this year, I also want to try new things like the Chocolate and Whiskey Liqueur recipe I found, or the many items I will make in my cooking class this weekend. Such fun! I am such a nerd.

Saturday, November 25

No Business Complaining

We had a really wonderful day at the beach. Matilda ate lots of sand, we ate yummy sandwiches with turkey and cranberry sauce on them, Tim & Matilda stalked the seagulls (or as he is trying to teach her, "sea chickens"), and I laid on the blanket in the sun relaxing. Yet I am going to complain anyways.

Nothing is going right tonight.

1. We were craving pizza for dinner. Our favorite pizza place, Casa Bianca, is a huge wait and we weren't up for that torture. We tried for 30 minutes to call for take out but the phone was busy. Finally we decided to try Albano's, a newly recommended local place. The pizza there was not at all acceptable and we are left with the unsatisfied pizza craving still!

2. My crafty Pointy Kitties projects are not going as well as I would like. They are cute but my sewing skills aren't quite up to snuff and the heads are attached really wobbly and they all have little openings in the seams where the legs and tail meet. While this forms a quite realistic bum, most stuffed animals I have encountered don't have such accurate anal areas.

3. Dessert of the month is turning out to be a disaster again. It is supposed to be Floating Islands with Chocolate Mousse and Creme Anglaise. However, the meringues did not seem to set right and are too small to scoop out and fill with mousse. I am trying to convince Tim what he really wanted was Chocolate Mousse with Creme Anglaise, Whipped Cream and raspberries. I told him next month he needs to choose something simple to restore my dessert confidence.

Friday, November 24

Black Friday

Not much to report from around here. We are exploring the depths of our laziness this weekend. Today we ventured out for a surprisingly tame trip to Best Buy this morning, did another stint at the playground, ate some more turkey, took hand-me-downs to the Herrmans, and napped. We have more of the same planned for tomorrow (turkey and napping especially) and a massage appointment on Sunday! It is so nice to have Tim home with us.

Thursday, November 23

Happy Thanksgiving

This post card replica of a 1961 book cover seemed like the perfect image for today. While professionally I cannot advocate this approach, mass overeating does provide job security for me in the future.

I heard a great NPR story this morning on Kids' Nutrition and the Trickle-Up Effect (click the link to read or hear the full NPR story). Besides the great content it also had a lot of personal references. The main portion of the story was about a nutrition graduate student at Cornell University who introduced new foods (cous cous, collard greens and other foreign foods) to kids at a Trumansburg, NY elementary school. The kids then ate more of these foods by asking for them at home, and the demand from the at-home-dinners even caused the local market to begin stocking the cous cous and other foods.

The portion of the news piece that seemed particularly appropriate for today's holiday was their tie-in to the family meal (which now could be considered an endangered species). Research has consistently shown the nutritional, social and even academic benefits for kids who regularly eat meals together with the family. So at least with todays eating holiday many of us will be sitting down together, including Matilda who will be enjoying her first tastes of turkey in the company of our LA "family." Happy Thanksgiving as you enjoy your special meal with family and friends.

Wednesday, November 22


We are finally beating the snotty funk around here and I may even trade my pajama pants for jeans and leave the house today. Wahoo, big excitement! I was planning to try to see The Departed at Mommy and Me this morning, but seeing as the movie starts in 5 minutes and Matilda is STILL sleeping (see Exhibit A) that plan has been derailed. She (or I should say we) hasn't been sleeping well the past days with her congestion. Now that she can breath better I would feel bad dragging her out of bed just to chase her up and down the aisle of a movie she didn't pick.

Yesterday we got some oilcloth to put under the high chair. Mind you the carpet was already nasty well before Matilda arrived but the pile of rejected food bits was rapidly growing. The oilcloth seemed like an easier cleaning solution for a carpeted dining area and after close inspection M seemed to approve.

I was very excited to get a shout out from Slashfood Monday after this post. Slashfood features a variety of food articles, recipes, news and reviews - it is a regular on my daily internet rounds. Speaking of foodie, the cranberries destined for sauce were too pretty so I had to take a quick picture before they met the blender. Make your sauce today; it always tastes better the next day! Plus it cuts out one of the millions of other tasks to do before the big meal. Although I can't complain, we aren't hosting this year. Alwyn is brining turkey for us right now!

And I will leave you with a gratuitous shot of Tim looking cute and Matilda in a ridiculous hat.

Tuesday, November 21

Curly Girl

Taken Monday after a bathroom steam session to try and loosen up her congestion. This picture doesn't quite do it justice, but Matilda's hair can get just as curly and crazy as her parents now that it is getting longer.

Monday, November 20

Spiced Nuts

These spiced nuts were a standard around our family gatherings as a child. The past few years I have started making them to package up in pretty jars and give to friends at the holidays. They are always a huge hit and a few people can be counted upon to make nonchalant inquiries in early December each year about when they will appear.

This batch I made from Trader Joe's brand unsalted, mixed nuts. The blend is a bit too heavy on cashews for my taste, but thankfully has plenty of brazil nuts, which almost compensates. You can use any assortment of nuts to suit your liking for this recipe. In a pinch I have also made them with salted nuts, which is really nice if you like that whole salty-sweet thing.

4 pounds mixed, unsalted nuts
2 egg whites
1/2 cup orange juice concentrate
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice

Whip together the egg white and orange juice concentrate. Pour over the nuts and stir to cover evenly. Mix together the sugar and spices. Pour the spice mixture over the nuts and stir to distribute evenly. Spread the nuts out on two baking trays. Bake at 225F for 1 hour, stirring ever 15 minutes. Then try not to eat them all before your guests arrive.

Sunday, November 19

Cookie Bake

My family has a long tradition of baking for the holidays and our annual Cookie Bake occupies a large percentage of my childhood Christmas memories. My mom and her sisters would get together one Saturday a few weekends before Christmas and spend the day baking cookies like fools. They would arrive with 2-3 triple batches of dough each, and then make more as the day went on. In the early years, they also made candy (brittles, fudge, etc.) and did the decorating that same day as well. Now the candy is abandoned and all frosting, chocolate drizzling and other ornamentation is done later indepepndantly. This may be due to some gingerbread men that were obscenely decorated late in the day one year, but no one will say for sure. One Uncle claims they are slacking off in their old age and soon will stoop to just exchanging store bought cookies in some dark parking lot corner.

While I grew up in New York attending East Coast Cookie Bake (many will contend the Original C.B.), my Grandma and several Aunts live in Arizona and have their own West Coat Cookie Bake each year. As you can imagine there is fierce competition between the E.C.C.B. and W.C.C.B. Slanderous claims have been exchanged, authenticity of recipes called into question, one year a suspicious package arrived at one C.B. location containing boxed cookie mixes - all scandalous behavior.

As pictured above, Matilda is in training because she will attend her first Cookie Bake in a few weeks: W.C.C.B. Tim & I want to remain impartial as Matilda chooses which C.B. to affiliate herself with.

Saturday, November 18

Weighing the Options

When you give up on wiping your snotty child's nose, you will soon find a sheen of smeary snot covering most items in the household - not just your boob.

Screaming child fleeing the tissue or snot encrusted house?

Because you can never talk too much about snot.

So the gals in the household are all sick. My throat is burning and no amount of tea, broth, hot lemon with honey, or lozenges has been able to soothe it yet. Matilda woke up at 4am and couldn't settle back down. Every time she tried to nurse she would get frustrated with her stuffed nose. Put that on the list of glamorous things no one told you about parenting - a trail of snot running down your boob as the sick baby tries to nurse. Glorious.

Tim ended up taking her out into the living room for the rest of the night and rocking her back to sleep while I got a solid few hours. Now he is walking her around the neighborhood in the Bjorn, scaring passersby with the snot slugs on Matilda's face. She refuses to let us wipe her face and if we do manage a quick pass with the tissue she busts out crying like we've stabbed her.

Here's to hoping Tim doesn't get this crud (so he can keep spoiling us).

Friday, November 17

Pool Update

We had the last swim class of this session today. Matilda seems to really enjoy the classes and got more excited by the sight of the pool each time we went. Today I wanted to take a picture of her sitting by the pool but it was impossible as she would just crawl full speed for it each time I sat her down. She also seemed a little more relaxed in the water today and moved her limbs a bit more. Not quite paddling or kicking per se, but it felt less like she was hanging on my chest for dear life. The next session of classes starts in December but I am not sure yet if we will sign up. The longer we are in swim class the more I hear about why babies shouldn't be in swim class so I need to move beyond that paranoia first.

Thursday, November 16

Give Me That Camera

Play Date

Matilda just had her first playdate with a handsome little guy, C, from the library story hour. While there was little actual playing between the babies, fun was had by all. C was very interested in me and climbed all over my lap, fed me tortellini, and laughed at my silly play antics. Matilda was just as interested in their sweet dog and got several big doggy kisses. She was also excited by the new array of toys to thrash and very gently challenged C's sharing abilities. C's dad mentioned that he is unsure how to approach the sharing issue at this age, which was really nice to hear since I am feeling the same. We settled on distraction techniques for today. It was a fun opportunity to get the girl out into some new surroundings AND have intelligent, adult conversation. At least I hope it sounded intelligent - some days my brain really feels like mush lately so I can't be sure what was said. Regardless, I am looking forward to a repeat in the future.

Wednesday, November 15

Matilda the Destroyer

After crushing the bee this morning, Matilda took on a bed of Marigolds this afternoon. As you can see she is quite lady-like. We call her our delicate little flower.

Venom and Trashy TV

NaBloPoMo Day 15: I am half way there and haven't yet reached the bottom of the barrel for topics to post on. Although I am getting there - stay tuned for upcoming posts on my ever-increasing number of moles or pathetic obsession with America's Next Top Model.

Today Matilda learned a lesson in insect biology and defense mechanisms when she got stung by a bee on the playground. She was sitting knee to knee with another little girl and they were both busy trying to pull each other's hair and poke eyeballs when Matilda stopped to reach down into her lap. I didn't see the bee until after she started crying, it was lying on her lap. At first I couldn't tell where she was stung but then saw the squished bee guts in her hand and found the stinger still in her thumb. It looked like she really did a number on the poor guy and he wasn't going to be bothering anybody else today. She is getting very dexterous with her pudgy fingers and always surprises us with the little items she notices and picks up. I really do need to get more vigilant I suppose. Next she'll be picking up all the razor blades and pills in the sand box.

She took the sting really well and only cried for a few minutes before returning to crawling around and picking up leaf bits. We were headed to Costco after the park to buy mass quantities of bulky things so I justified buying myself a yummy frozen fruit smoothie thing with the purpose of icing the poor girl's finger. No obvious reaction to the sting, although she has a fatter than normal little thumb.

Note: If my last post still has no video displayed it is just because You Tube is down for the moment - check back later.

Tuesday, November 14

My Definition of H- E- Double Hockey Sticks

Los Angeles traffic mixed with screaming baby. Granted Matilda is getting way better in the car, but she still has her moments. Don't be too afraid - it isn't a long video.

Monday, November 13

15 items or less

Every Monday CityMama posts her weekly menus, which always looks fantastic. I am usually trying to be so organized but rarely pull it off. Last week I think we went to the grocery store four times. In your standard seven-day week that is a lot of trips to the store. Many of the cashiers are now on a first name basis with Matilda. While I can't promise fewer trips to the store (I am already planning one for later today), I did manage to sketch out our meals for the week. Early in the week is always pretty structured but the end of the week gets a little spotty generally.

  • Monday - Baby Squash and Their Stuffed Blossoms with Fresh Tomato Puree (inspired by my new vegetable reference book), Baked Fennel and Mozzarella from The Silver Spoon.
  • Tuesday - Eggplant and Ricotta Lasagne, also from The Silver Spoon, green salad
  • Wednesday - Pumpkin Soup with Honey and Cloves, Roasted Spiced Beets with Beet Greens, and sauteed asparagus.
  • Thursday - Taco Salad
  • Friday night - leftovers or dinner out
  • Saturday - usually dinner out
  • Sunday - whatever strikes our fancy at farmers market that morning

Sunday, November 12

Sewing Fool

I brainstormed a list of all the hand-crafty things I want to make for Christmas presents and determined I should have started two months ago. I think there is no hope for clearing the sewing machine off the dining room table in the next few weeks and Tim has taken to calling it my workshop. I think I need to hire some elves as Matilda is not a very willing assistant.

Saturday, November 11

The Thrill is Gone

Matilda and B.O.B. are not seeing eye-to-eye these days. I have posted before about our awesome jogging stroller, Bob. For months we were having a grand old time with him. However, these past few weeks Matilda will not tolerate sitting in Bob and yells in protest until I take her out. This situation has severely curtailed my running routine. It is especially hard to carry her when wearing slick running clothes - her wiggly little self slides right down my hip. I am sure this is just a phase and suspect it has to do with her mad crawling skills. She is not content to just sit and ride but needs to GO-GO-GO! This morning I was hopeful as we started out and she sat fiddling with the toys on her lap contentedly. Then about 1.5 miles from home the protests started, so we left RD Papa to continue his run accompanied by the iPod and walked ourselves back home, pushing poor dejected Bob. We will keep trying, but for now it seems Bob will spend a lot more time keeping the vacuum cleaner company than me.

Friday, November 10

Getting Your Five-A-Day?

I have to admit the magnitude of my nerdiness when I say how much I am enjoying reading this REFERENCE book. Vegetables from Amaranth to Zucchini is the perfect mix of history and how-to with an enticing assortment of classic and unusual recipes. While it doesn't seem like the type of book you would read cover to cover, I am finding myself doing just that - although admittedly I am only at bitter melon. Reading each item's "vegetable biography" fills me with renewed interest in cooking with it, and makes even the basic vegetables intriguing. Although I am sure Tim will question the inclusion of three different beet recipes in our weeks' menu.

While this book is helping our household to reach the Five-A-Day goals, the CDC and Produce for Better Health Foundation have announced a change in the longstanding Five-A-Day campaign for the rest of you all. The new slogan will be Fruits & Veggies - More Matters and is scheduled to be rolled out in early 2007. Only 20% of us meet the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans minimum five servings of fruits and vegetables currently. While I agree with the sentiment that increased fruit and veggie intake is always beneficial, it seems like there is more room for complacency with this slogan. It seems like if you are only eating one serving to start with, eating more is still not quite that good. But on the other hand you don't want to overwhelm the people with unobtainable goals. It just verifies how hard public health policy is.

Thursday, November 9

Love Thursday

Karen at Chookooloonks started a theme of posting about love on Thursday so I thought I would join the fun. This past week I have been a bit of a night owl, staying up late after Tim and Matilda go to bed for a few moments of quiet time. While I enjoy the alone time and have been productive on my little projects, the even better part is then going to bed. We have been co-sleeping with Matilda and it is so sweet to go into our bedroom and see my family all sprawled out in the bed. I have to squirm my way in between them and shove everyone over a bit to make space.

Then as I lay there they both inevitable end up squishing back up against me. Whenever I will allow it, Tim has always thrown one leg over me to sleep. Matilda is just like her dad in this sleeping trait and somehow, even in her deepest sleep, will heave her little leg up onto me. I definitely have days that I long for a giant king sized bed all to myself to spread out in. But this week, lying in bed each night with my family around me, it makes my heart just melt with all the love.


In the green section of the Getty's family room.

Wednesday, November 8

Sandbox Dating

For weeks I have been meaning to let Matilda play in the sandbox at our local playground but can't ever seem to get around to it. It seems like too much of an ordeal. I envisioned a big mess to contend with involving lots of sand in the rolls and her endless attempts to ingest sand. This morning I finally got beyond my sand aversion and we both dove in. Matilda seemed really intrigued by the new texture and sat endlessly grabbing handfuls, watching the sand fall between her fat little fingers. She did have a gritty mouth by the end, but seemed to decide after a few tastes that sand wasn't quite so appetizing. Once we got beyond the sand-eating problem, we encountered the give-me-all-your toys-problem. I didn't think at 7-months we would already be facing this and explaining how to share isn't going so well with Matilda. Plus, I always feel nervous about the parent etiquette when I am trying to police Matilda's attempts to steal toys or tackle other babies.

At the playground today I talked with lots of moms that I have seen around the baby circuit in our neighborhood lately. It really feels like dating all over again with the awkward conversations and pressure to get digits. I would love more mom friends to hang out with at the playground, but how do I know after only a few minutes conversation that they aren't freaks with polar views to mine? Will they think I am a weirdo if I ask for their phone number? What is the proper approach to all this? Someone needs to write a "Mom Socializing for Dummies" book. When my veteran mom-friend Sarah was in town visiting she offered up her playground line: "I should give you my number to meet up at the playground sometime." Seems not too threatening or committal, right?

Tuesday, November 7

Break out the Sunscreen and Turn on the AC

Can I just start off by saying how much I hate shopping? It is impossible to find a swimsuit this time of year. It is impossible to find anything in the stores other than the current "in" styles. Each store is always striving to have the same crap thing on its rack as every other store. I have no patience for it all! After much searching we found this swimsuit, the last one in LA County, on the clearance rack for $4.00! I hate shopping but a bargain does make it less painful.

Not that I want this shopping tirade to be construed as any sort of complaint on our ability to swim OUTDOORS in November. We are clearly very lucky and thinking of our poor, cold friends in the dreary, gray Northeast. Although I could use a little less of the "nice" weather - 101 degrees today was really pushing the limits of acceptable.

Go Vote.

I mean it, right now. Stop surfing the internet and go vote.

Monday, November 6

Dud of the Month

I have talked before about the Dessert of the Month program in the RD Mama household. It is really a win-win gift as I get to challenge my cooking skills and experiment making new things, while RD Papa gets to eat a yummy dessert of his choice. This month, for the first time in the 17-month history we got a recipe that flopped. Every other dessert has been fantastic and we always claim it is the best yet.

For October Tim picked out Caramelized Pear Charlottes with Persimmon Sauce. He often chooses items based on what fruit is in season and our farmers market is currently overrun with persimmons. I was excited for my first attempt at making charlottes; a buttered bread shell filled with spiced sauteed fruit, pears in this case. Notice I said October, while we are now clearly in November. We ran a bit behind schedule this month as Tim had trouble deciding and then the persimmons took their sweet time ripening. Or so I thought. After sitting on the counter for a week, banished to a paper bag with a banana for the last few days, I finally thought they were ripe enough to proceed. After getting the charlottes into the oven, I got to work on the sauce. I realized upon cutting the persimmons open something was amiss and tasted the fruit to test the flavor. It was so horrid, I wanted to scrape my tongue out and immediately made Tim verify my findings and join me in misery.

As it turns out, the persimmons were not quite ripe at all. The recipe specifically calls for Hachiya persimmons, which I had no experience with. All our persimmons eating experience has been Fuyus, the more commonly found variety in the US. Upon further research I found out that the tannin levels in Hachiyas are extremely high and they subsequently have a very astringent flavor if eaten before fully ripe.

So, some quick improvisation was in order. I made a raspberry coulis to accompany the pear charlottes instead. While I can't fairly judge the recipe without actually following it, the charlottes themselves were nothing to write home about. I can't imagine a perfect persimmons puree would have completely salvaged them. They tasted like soggy bread with applesauce inside. I think the pear flavor needs to be intensified a bit, and some additional spices may be in order. All in all this month's (really last month's) dessert was a disappointment and I am glad it is already time to attempt the next one and redeem myself.

Sunday, November 5

The Apple Doesn't Fall Far

I caught Matilda reading the Dietary Reference Intake tables in my diet therapy book. She seemed to be particularly interested in iron and phosphorous. Luckily I was able to reassure her that artichoke, her current favorite food, is an adequate source of both minerals.

Saturday, November 4


This blogging everyday thing is fine for weekdays, but when the weekend rolls around and I generally spend less time staring at the computer it is really a challenge! Here are a few pictures for a token post.

Matilda can rarely be convinced to sit in her swing lately, so we have found a new purpose for it:

Toy Box!

Friday, November 3

Swim Class

We had our first swim class today. I searched for formal intensive lessons that would teach Matilda a proper crawl stroke before the end of the year. However, all the classes for her age group seemed more focused on games, songs and getting kids comfortable in the water so we settled for that. Hopefully these relaxed first sessions won't impact her chances at the 2024 Olympic Games.
All Sunscreened Up and Ready to Swim

Watching the other babies to be sure she is doing it correctly.
The moms demonstrate bubble blowing while the kids check each other out.

The class ended with a big round of the Hoakie Poakie and great fun was had by all!

Thursday, November 2

Getting Crafty

My first Pointy Kitty, dubbed Beta by Tim.

I was inspired by the gorgeous items I found at Wee Wonderfuls by Hillary to try my hand at making a stuffed animal. She has the free pattern for Point Kitty available for download. I was excited with my first attempt but hopeful I can improve my skills. Pointy Kitty's head is flopped a little bit too far downward and I am afraid her front legs are starting to sag from the weight of her head. I'll have to stuff them better next time. You can see many more Pointy Kitties that other people have made and posted photos of in a Flickr group here. It is really fun to see the creative little embellishments that others thought of.
Watch out Beta, Matilda wants to suck on your tail!

Wednesday, November 1

More Fruit, Less Juice

For the first time since it's inception the WIC program may soon change the food packet it offers participants. The foods offered currently were included when it was founded 32 years ago either because they were considered healthy, or because the lobbyist for that industry succeeded in convincing politicians that their product is healthy. While the food provided is integral to many families well being, the current foods are too high in saturated fats, provide no vegetable and fruit choices, and offer little flexibility for cultural preferences. The current food package is also not at all equipped to address the current childhood obesity crisis, especially among our low-income families who qualify for WIC.

The Institute of Medicine conducted a study and provided USDA with recommendations of how to improve the package of food to better align with the current Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Those recommendations include:
  • including fresh fruits and vegetables
  • limiting saturated fat and cholesterol by offering low fat milk and reduced quantities of cheese and eggs; offering soy milk alternatives
  • decreased quantitites of fruit juice for all participants
  • increased flexibility to include foods for diverse population
The USDA is now accepting comments until November 6th when the public comment period closes and they will finalize their decision. This may be the last chance for another 30 years to provide healthier food for the six million growing children served annually by WIC. If you feel moved by this topic, or have input that may be beneficial, please make your voice heard by emailing - you can find more information here.