Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year!

I wanted to make a video of Owen saying "happy new year" before he went to bed tonight. The problem was that he had already started watching DDD. So I paused it and told him to say "happy new year" and then, for emphasis, jump off the couch. However, with Sesame Street paused in the background, Owen struggled to concentrate and drifted a bit off script. Anyway, you get the gist of it. Enjoy!


Saturday, December 15, 2007

Dinner with Owen

Owen's dining experience is centered around beverages, condiments and desert.

Friday, December 14, 2007

adventures in cooking: yardlong beans

i have been running into these really long beans at the farmer's markets and even at safeway and finally decided to give them a try. the beans technically aren't a yard long, but they are way longer than any bean i'd ever met!

i found a recipe in an old sf chronicle cookbook, "sichuan dry fried long beans" and and went for it. people, they were delicious. then again, quick fry anything and add ground pork and chilies and you're bound for glory. we had some spring rolls and brown rice on the side.

here's the recipe & beans before/after:

Sichuan Dry Fried Long Beans:
2 lbs. Chinese long beans
2 c. plus 2 T. peanut oil (or as needed)
1/2 lb. ground pork
2 T. chopped fresh hot red chiles, seeds and all
1 T. chopped fresh ginger
1 T. dark soy sauce
1 t. sugar
1 t. salt
1 t. dry sherry or Shaoxing wine

Rinse and cut the long beans into 3" lengths; dry thoroughly.
Heat 2 c. oil in a wok or heavy skillet to nearly smoking.
While oil is heating, chop the ground pork briefly to a finer consistency.

When oil is hot, add beans and cook 5 minutes, until they wrinkle;
remove and drain.

Drain off oil and reheat the pan. Add 2 T. oil and the pork. Cook, stirring
over high heat until the granules are broken up and the meat changes
color. Add the soy, cook 30 seconds, then chiles and ginger; cook another
30 seconds. Add the beans, sugar, salt and wine. Cook stirring until
piping hot.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

More Owen News

Yesterday Erin posted about Owen's love of Cocko hoggogs. Today I'll just put together a quick list of what's up with Owen these days. This should be useful for family members planning to visit this holiday season. Because you gotta know the lingo around here.
  1. Owen doesn't play Daddy Run anymore. The new game is Daddy Run Really Fast. This involves me sprinting ahead of him through the house and hiding behind something like a couch. Owen then comes in a few seconds later and I jump out an scare him. Hilarity ensues. Good exercise for Daddy.
  2. What used to be "Cee-we-o Nweok" (Cereal and milk) has now matured into "Owen need Chex." He has now established brand loyalty and recognized the power of the word "need" as opposed to "want." Owen has needs. His needs are Chex-related.
  3. Owen also still needs DDD. "Owen, watch, DDD Ehmo?!" Some things never change. He is currently way into Elmo's Wild-Wild West. Even though Daddy has the hots for Miss Noodle, Mommy and Daddy prefer the much shorter and more educational Sesame Street 1-2-3 Count With Me or ABC's. His latest struggle is learning how to ask for volume adjustments like a nice, sane person. He currently requests for more volume by screaming "Daddy. TURN. UP!" Mommy has informed him that this is not acceptable. Daddy's feelings get hurt.
  4. Owen can now count to 20 and sing his ABC's. He can also count discrete objects (one, two, fie, fee, fie! Yay!). I've contacted Mensa.
  5. "Owen watch p'ay game." This means he would like to play the Fisher Price Online Games for Toddlers. There are four games that he likes to play:
    1. Ammimals (ABC's with the animals)
    2. Pink Hat (Counting hockey goals with the pink-clad penguin)
    3. White Hat (Counting football field goals with a dog)
    4. Foot Ball (Counting soccer goals with a cat. Owen is very European with his use of "football" for "soccer." He'll learn better one day.)
  6. He's very obedient when instructions are given in list form. For instance, we went to Best Buy the other day and Mommy told him, "Number 1: No running. Number 2: When it's time to go, it's time to go." Throughout the shopping trip he kept repeating, "Numbah Wah: No running. Numbah Two: Time go, time go!" There was minimal running (he cleverly galloped when he needed to move fast), and no tantrum when we had to leave. Viola!
  7. He's dealing with post-baba living very well. Night-night is extremely smooth. Nap-times are harder. But I told him yesterday, "Number 1: Go to sleep. Number 2: No screaming, no kicking the door." It worked today. He only cried for about 5 minutes.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

"Costco hot dog"

this afternoon owen and i went to the busiest costco in the world.
seriously, it's the busiest... but the lines are never longer than two
people, because all the checkstands are open!

our treat for surviving is to have what owen likes to call "cocko hoggog".
$1.50 for a 1/4 lb kosher beef hot dog and a drink.
we load it up with ketchup, mustard (AKA "yellow ketchup"), and relish

as we were enjoying our hoggogs, i looked at owen and said,
"did you know when daddy was little he used to eat a hot dog everyday?"
to which he replied matter-of-factly, "yeah"

if you're down with the cocko hoggog, lemme hear ya! (check out the survey on the right side)

Thursday, December 6, 2007

bye-bye baba: play-by-play

part 2- the farewell:
following tuesday'snap, the whole family joined owen in celebrating
as he threw his baba in the rubbish (that's what we hawaiians call
trash). we waved to it and owen said "bye-bye blue baba, yellow
truck (ours are yellow) come take baba away now". we rushed inside
and opened a big-boy toy and sang songs about the accomplishment.

part 3- first bedtime without:
owen was beside himself, so upset at the prospect of going to sleep
without his longtime comfort. after 45 minutes of crying, i brought
him to the rocker and rocked him to sleep just as i did when he was
only a few days old. 3:30 am rolled around and a huge thunderstorm
began. thunder, lightning, and crazy winds had us all awake
for the next two hours. fortunately, once owen fell back asleep -
he slept until nearly 9 am!

part 4 - naptime, wednesday:
after a fun-filled morning with friends, owen was truly tired but struggled
again to settle in. after reading and attempting to get him to lay down for
about 20 minutes, i kissed him goodnight and told him it was okay to play
with his toys quietly, but mommy had work to do. sure enough, after
about 30 minutes of solitary play, he put himself to bed! woohoo!

part 5 - bedtime, wednesday:
2 requests for baba and >3 minutes of crying and he was fast asleep.

right now it feels too good to be true. don't get me wrong, last night
was torture, but if he's really figured this out so quickly, i don't
know why we waited so long!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Hotel Mauna Kea

bye-bye baba

we're going for it. we started a 3-day countdown yesterday to prepare us all for a final farewell to the beloved baba (pacifier) that owen uses at bedtime. he seems to get the concept of counting down days, and so far says he's agreeable to bidding his pacifier adieu, but tomorrow will be the true test. cross your fingers that it goes smoothly!

Owen pulls his weight around the house