Ten on Tuesday

1.What can I say? I just have a lot to write about these days. And, well, I'm a third of a way into this wonderful stretch of maternity leave. I'm feeling a little bit like a stay-at-home-mama, and really enjoying it. Which isn't to say I won't be ready and happy to go back to work when the time comes. Just that this is nice. Really nice.

2. We went to church on Sunday. Juliette learned about Namaan during Sunday School, and Genevieve slept in my arms throughout the whole service. When I received communion, I touched the bread to her lips before I ate it, and kissed her on the forehead after I drank the juice. Welcome to the table, little one.

3. I love cloth diapers; there's just something so sweet about wrapping a clean rectangle of cotton around a baby's bum. We unsuccessfully tried to use borrowed all-in-ones for the early newborn days, but we had a lot of leaks and a hard time getting the nubby fabrics clean. So we're back with cheap, simple prefolds and proraps. And man, the nifty washable bag for dirty diapers makes laundry even easier. If you're on the market for diapers, I highly recommend ordering from Dy-Dee, the diaper service we briefly used in California. Their diapers and wraps are way cheaper than most.

4. How about some *riveting* footage of a sleeping newborn? You have to turn up your sound to get the full effect.

5. I love summertime meals. Juliette and I brought our plates out to our new front steps yesterday.The blurry light green stuff on my plate is a salad of local cabbage, a cucumber from a friend's garden, a can of garbanzo beans, and a dressing of olive oil, lemon, and garlic. It's a variation of a Molly Wizenberg recipe, and super yummy.

6. I've been using cloth napkins since I moved in with Lisa in 2001, and only just thought of a solution to the Which Napkin Was Mine Again? conundrum: napkin rings. Now we can reuse our still-clean-enough napkins without wondering if those were our toast crumbs. Those were the least gaudy napkin rings at Pier One, where the napkin rings spectrum goes from Gaudy to Super Special Extreme Gaudy with Sequins On Top.

7. During my last back outtage, I got a massage at the local chain. I signed up for the discount monthly plan, which means that for the next year I will get one massage a month. Given my history of back issues, I'm feeling like it's high time I start getting proactive. I will be counting down the days until the 28th, when I'm eligible for my next massage.

8. We had a locksmith come by today to add a deadbolt, and he was so good with Juliette, who peppered him with a zillion questions. He told her how great it was she asked questions, how lucky she was to have a sister, how she could be a locksmith if she wanted to when she grows up, and how she was so smart she might also think about being a doctor or lawyer. (This, after we'd been at the park earlier and I overheard a mother chide her son for wanting to play with Juliette's doll stroller, "Boys don't play with strollers!") As it turns out, the friendly locksmith has five daughters of his own, two of whom grew up to be farmers who drive big tractors and know how to weld. This man clearly knows how to empower girls.

9. Best ice cream recipe yet: mix 2/3 cup sugar with 1 cup peanut butter. Add one cup whole milk, one cup heavy cream, and one teaspoon vanilla. Pour it into the ice cream maker and run until it's frozen. I seriously said "wow" after every single bite. (I just found out that they sell heavy cream in bulk at Costco. Never thought I'd be the sort of person to buy heavy cream in bulk. And now we know why they were selling the ice cream makers for so cheap!)

10. I was interviewed in the most recent issue of the Christian Century. I'm really pleased with how it turned out; I got to give props to many of the people and organizations that have been so important to my ministry. And, I nearly had a conniption when I read another article in the same issue, about the recent Wild Goose Festival - it quotes Karin Bergquist from Over the Rhine. As if it weren't enough to be in my favorite magazine, to be in my favorite magazine with my favorite band!

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