This past Sunday marked a big moment at the Asayplacey; Linley Louise had her first sit down meal time! I had given her tastes here and there of my avocado, potato, things like that… Great Grandpa Bob gave her a lick of ice cream (she liked it), but otherwise we hadn’t started solids quite yet. She didn’t know what to make of her chair (compliments of our neighbors, the Wallaces), or her bib.Until Sunday, by God’s grace and lots of perseverance (nursing wasn’t always the easiest for either of us!), Linley’s only source of nutrition came from me. So this was/is definitely a new experience for her and me!

I did my best to place her hands where we’d like to train her to keep them for meal time. This is me doing that…As you’ll see, I don’t think she got the hint – maybe next time – or the next time – or the time after that?  I’ve started signing to her to help with the lack of verbal communication. (More on that when we see some progress!)

She was waiting so patiently:

First Bite!

She obviously liked it - she grabbed the bowl!

and then tried to eat her bib... or what had fallen on it.

G.O.O.D stuff!

I don't think this is the true sign for 'more please'. :| Not really waiting so patiently anymore.

And that is meal time #1! We do have some footage of this event, which I’m sure we’ll get around to posting it shortly. Overall: SUCCESS.

buh-bye purple popple.

Popple: commonly known as: pacifier, nuk, plug, sucker, etc. Whatever you call it, it’s ‘popple’ at the asayplacey, and we’re saying goodbye.

 We had others for naps and bedtime, but this is the purple popple, which went with us everywhere out and about. Plus Tad’s mom, Michelle, got Linley the fun bead clip so we could keep track of it.  It was super convenient, and the purple popple never left it!

I’ll have to confess that I never wanted to START using a popple (pacifier) in the first place. But if I recall correctly, after suffering through just one week of sleepless nights, up every 45 minutes comforting a fresh babe, I ran to the closet, broke open the package, and we got… well, more than 45 minutes of rest, while Linley utilized the silicone sucker.

The use of a pacifier has been a life saver, for the most part, but as of late, I’ve noticed that it’s becoming more of a problem than it is a help. By God’s grace, we trained our little lady to fall asleep on her own (with the use of her pacifier) at around 2.5 months. We’d lay her down awake, giver her the popple, and we’d leave her room. (no it wasn’t just that easy; it took lots of persistence, but in time she learned and it was so worth it to train her!) While she’d fall asleep on her own, she was beginning to wake up in the middle of a nap or in the middle of the night and not be able to fall asleep without some help from her pacifier (meaning mom or dad comes to put it back in). And even then, she wouldn’t necessarily go back to sleep. I also noticed that when we’d lay her down with her pacifier, she’d usually spit it out within 2 minutes and cry herself to sleep within 10 minutes or so.

So, noting the above, and after reading that an infant has little need for non-nutritive sucking after about 6 months of age, we made a decision and are giving the popples the boot! So far so good. We’ve made it a solid 24 hours with little tears! Going out and about is a somewhat tricky, as there is now no way for instant relief inside the car seat or stroller.

One bonus for Linley, however, is that we ARE keeping a modified version of the purple popple:

She won’t be able to suck on it anymore, but she can use it and the beads as a teether! win. win. Here’s to growing up!

I smell like Maple Syrup.

There’s a reason behind the title statement. I started taking Fenugreek again, an herb said to aid milk production in nursing mommies, to help keep up the supply while Linley grows.

She has been a great eater lately (Praise the Lord)! But unfortunately, it’s left me… ahem… lacking. Thankfully, though, we started her on solids (whole grain rice infant cereal) this week. More on this later!

And the maple syrup bit; Fenugreek makes you reek of MAPLE SYRUP! I had heard this before from others who had taken it, and it’s true. B.O. = Pancake. No need for sniffing, please.


gangster wear or hoodie dress?

It got down to a whopping 34º last night and little lady was in need of a simple everyday sweatshirt so we headed to Target, but all they had that we liked were boys 12 months! I figured if it looked too masculine I could fem it up somehow, so we got it knowing she’d wear it eventually (the leggings she has on below are 12 months – long legs asay!). Turns out the hoodie is quite a bit bigger than I thought… but it’ll work. Either we can play like we’re in the hood (not even close) – or like it’s a hoodie dress. Thoughts or opinions?

chicken tomato basil pizza

I really enjoy using fresh herbs and have been blessed by a handful of people who have donated some to us this summer! Most recently is Tad’s mom via Aunt Carla’s garden. Someday, perhaps, we’ll start a garden of our own or pot some on the deck… not this year.

One of the classic Asayplacey meals is homemade pizza. It’s easy and there are leftovers for lunch! Having super fresh basil on hand I decided to make chicken tomato basil:


2 1/4 t active dry yeast

3/4 cup hot water

2 t salt

1 T sugar

1 cup whole wheat flour

1 cup all-purpose flour

2-3 T olive oil

corn meal

Dissolve yeast in water. Mix dry ingredients together (leave out the corn meal). Combine all ingredients together with a fork until dough forms. Knead thoroughly and form a ball (note: to avoid messing the counter, I like to knead in the mixing bowl!). Coat in olive oil. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled (20-30 minutes is all depending on location).

On your large baking pan of choice (a stone could be used here as well) brush olive oil and sprinkle enough corn meal to lightly cover. Spread dough out onto pan. Bake at 400° F for about 8 minutes. Remove from oven and add desired toppings. Back in the oven until golden brown… enjoy!

FIVE months!

The 11th marked the day~ 5 seems like such a big number — but then 6, 7 and 8 will too. Then she’ll be 18 and graduated, Lord willing. ah dear. Let’s enjoy!!!

This Little Lady is all smiles these days (do I hear a shout for joy?!) and has such the personality!!! Just two days ago she started pulling her bottom lip down like in the image on the right.

I love how alert she is! The con, however, is that there’s little hope for her sleeping if there is anything worth looking at, hearing, touching, or missing out on. 

Almost mobile! She’s been twistin’ and scootin’ and pulling her knees up… better put away the chicken wire that’s just laying on the floor in the room where she plays. :| disaster!!!

She can’t quite sit and balance on her own yet (as seen below), but with practice we’ll get there. This is right before daddy caught her. No biffs on the concrete please!

Posin’! … until next time!

bags + skirts

First off I’d like to take a look at our dining table and remember why we designated one of our four bedrooms to be an office-study-craftroom. Maybe someday we’ll have things situated enough to where I can sew and leave my mess there instead:

Above you’ll find everything from once beautiful flowers from Mr. Owen Scott, to deodorant and the ironing board (the one and only mini).

For a while I had been wanting to make ‘on-the-go’ changing bags to take with us in whichever purse I had that day as a way to avoid schlepping a diaper bag everywhere we went. So finally I made the necessary purchases and had a go at it. I purchased 3/8 yard of fabric per print and reaped 2 bags from each. With each bag I used about 2 1/4 ft of woven cord.

They are simple draw-string bags, which I didn’t use a pattern for, but they turned out fairly well and are the perfect size!

Contents here include:

  • Changing pad
  • Diaper
  • Wipes
  • Extra onsie
  • Cream

Since I was in love with the mustard print and was already on a roll, I decided to fully satisfy my sewing craving and make Linley a sweet little skirt. I didn’t have a pattern for this either (who am I kidding – I hardly ever use a pattern… or recipe!) but I thought, surely I can make this work. So I brainstormed various designs and the steps needed to complete the task. I measured based off of a skirt that Little Lady already had and concluded that I had juuust enough fabric to make it work. So I made the skirt, and it turned out great! — but unfortunately I concluded incorrectly with my measurements, and with the gathers, there was no way Linley Louise would ever be wearing this skirt. sigh.

This is the front. I was planning on putting about an inch hem with the fabric to the right, but decided to just turn it under and leave it as is.

and the back. I used the snaps from an old onsie and used them as closures. They were a great alternative to purchasing and applying new snaps!

Even though it was too small for our little lady, there was another little lady coming to our house the very next day for a photo shoot who I thought may be able to squeeze in. And that she did – juuuust squeezed in.

I plan on having a second, third, and fourth attempt at making little lady clothes, so no reason to be discouraged quite yet! Next time, though, we’ll leave EXTRA wiggle room for the growin’ girl!

black beans

the result of a can of black beans to the foot:

Linley and I decided to pick up a few things after leaving the chiropractor’s office today, so we headed to the store. Instead of having the little lady ride ON the cart, I put her car seat down inside so I wouldn’t have to keep a hold of her while shopping, thus putting all of the groceries in the ‘top portion’ see image below:

well, I didn’t have the flap up covering the leg openings on the top where an older babe would sit (silly me) so the can rolled out and it. hurt. real. bad! No, I did not curse the beans, but I did learn to shop smarter next time.

So as to not shame the black beans below is a burger recipe my friend Sydney shared with me a couple of years ago, and it’s been a favorite Asayplacey dinner ever since!

BLACK BEAN BURGERS (note: measurements are to taste)

1 can black beans (drained and rinsed)

1 egg

1 can (mini?) green chilies

1 cup bread crumbs (or more if too sticky)

1-2 t cumin

1-2 t chile powder

1-2 cloves of garlic (or use garlic salt)

salt/pepper to taste.

Puree beans (or mash well). Mix above ingredients together. Form patties. Coat in corn meal. Fry in oil until crispy on the outside! We typically top with pico, avocado, and mayo, but try anything you like!

Yes. this is how I typically cook. a little of this and that and we’ll see how it turns out. I think that’s how really tasty new foods come about!