BRAD     |     EMILLIE

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Taking Abalonia

Ah... Merry Solstice Season... 'tis the season where we fight our seasonal depression (from sunlight deprivation) with shopping, gifting and food.  It is also the ultimate Mommy Olympics, as mothers everywhere find themselves juggling the additional roles of Santa and Martha-Stewart-esque decorating, cooking and cleaning.

Though I do have to admit that I am lucky, the gender imbalances in my life are more related to my stay-at-home-lactation than traditional roles. The men in my life took over all the meals!  I got Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day off from cooking.  Even so, I still had the role of the silk sails that moved the ship of Christmas cheer safely through the holiday season.

And my daughter's nightly vigil certainly don't allow me much time rest.  She is up hourly, standing in her crib calling "Mama-mama" and desperately pumping her hand in that familiar sign for "milk".  Her only other word is "hi" and she uses it as her a mantra for constant socialization.  It has served her well in this busy season.
Now a small story of something than has made my Neuroscience-scientific side go hum: After nearly a year of evening colic, and several months of horrible nights I decided to try a (highly recommended) homeopathic doctor. I was doubtful, but our extended health covered the appointment costs, so I decided (after having tried everything from diet, drugs, massage, chiropractics and behavioural training) it was worth a shot.

An administration of phosphorous pills after our first appointment immediately stopped the evening crying and gave us our first 4 hour sleep in months.  It only lasted about a week, but after several nights of no sleep we gave Uliana a second dose... and another miracle was wrought.  Once gain it only lasted about a week... and after several nights of crying and poor sleep, I have just given her another dose, hoping that it really is a miracle cure and tonight I will sleep.

(And for the record a bad night with Uliana is an hour of crying after her first wake up at 8pm, then up every hour, followed by another hour of crying from 2-3am.  A good night involved only one bout of crying, and 2 hour sleeps; so the homeopathic pill resulting in no crying and 4 hour sleeps  is a miracle.  And my logical brain can't imagine that it's due to a placebo effect, as Uliana certainly wouldn't know the difference between 200 CH phosphorous and the conventional pain killers.  However, after my year of all-night-raver style sleeping I'm not sure I have a logical brain anymore!)

Now a yummy seasonal breakfast treat.  Here is a spread that is rich, naturally sweet, yet a healthy addition to pancakes, or panettone.

Nutty Squash Butter
Place into a food processor: 2 cups nuts (peacan's are nice),  2 tbsp vegetable oil, 2 tbsp liquid sweetener (honey, maple syrup), 1 cup of squash, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp nutmeg and 1/4 tsp salt. Process until smooth.  Spread on toast or fruit!

And to finish off, here is a picture of our stocking hung by the staircase with care.  We made the hangers by reshaping cheap metal wreath hangers.

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