Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanks Again


We had a lovely Thanksgiving that started with the parade.
Then the feasting began.





We were so lucky to spend the day with the Valverdes who prepared a beautiful dinner and always make us feel like we are part of the family.

I guess that I'm just a little emotional lately and with the holiday and everything I seem to get choked up every time I think about how lucky I am. I've been counting my blessings one by one and the list gets longer every year. Even though there are some ugly things in this world, there are a lot more that are beautiful.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Rescue Mission


Rocky was taken for ransom by a couple of neighborhood ruffians. In order to get her back we had to hike all the way out into the mountains past Cottage Grove to this waterfall.

We were able to buy her back with a couple of cookies and a Cutie orange. In the end I think that the three of them planned it all out and split the booty. She seemed a little too calm during the whole thing. It was pretty good for us all because even though there was snow along the trail it was great to get outside.



Bonus Video
It is pretty common that kids who stay up past bedtime get into an ultra-hyper state of energy. My dad calls it the cat-crazies. This is what happened last night when Rocky had a pretty bad case of the cat-crazies.


video

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Homecoming Parade



I've been looking forward to this year's homecoming parade since the day after last year's. Although there weren't as many floats (or as much drunkenness for that matter) it was a success. While there were no togas, probably because of the freezing cold evening, there was a bunch of hippies.

This might not seem like much of a stretch for Eugene, but if you look closely, it is clear that these are the funny dressed-up hippies, not the real, we-dress-like-this-daily kind that are always outside of the library. This float sported more of a disco and tie-dyed type of hybrid - a 60s/70s mix.
It is kind of interesting to see so many hippies on campus because generally it seems that there is a big divide in this city between the university crowd and the drum-circle group that run the Saturday Market. The students are usually easily recognizable by their U of O paraphernalia and cell phones. The real hippies usually haven't showered for several weeks, and carry all their belongings on their backs. Also, the female U of O students are always either wearing skin-tight stretch pants with Ugg boots or little teeny shorts. (The short shorts are also donned by the hard-core runners who may or may not be students, but who are definitely not hippies.) The main bridge that covers the gap between the hippies and the college students is that they all agree on the legalization of marijuana.
This group went with a jungle theme.



The football players were giving out calendars and I was pretty excited with mine until I realized that it was for this year instead of next. If it takes 11 months to give them out for free, it doesn't seem to be that hot of a commodity.

Brandon worked hard to keep Rocky from getting frostbite. She took courage when the frat-boy dressed like a mermaid who was only wearing a clam-shell bra and some green butcher paper saluted her from the top of the truck he rode.
Rocky was one of the only kids around and really enjoyed the spoils. (And by that I mean that Brandon and I ate most the candy and she got to keep the beads.)

Sunday, November 8, 2009

An Adventure in Mango Rice

After an exciting, yet disappointing U of O game there is no better way to revitalize the spirit than with a bunch of friends crowded into a tiny kitchen. The first installment of the new cooking club turned out to be a success. Anu taught us how to cook Mango Rice which was delicious and Hema showed us her secret of perfect rice pudding. We were all amazed because they don't use any recipes in their cooking. I tried taking notes but in all the excitement I still don't think I have a decent list of directions to share.

Anu and I went to Sunrise Market which specializes in Asian foods earlier in the day to get the ingredients. I felt like I was in a completely different country. She was buying all this produce that looked like it should have come from a fantasy world and she could clearly explain how it was prepared. I recognized a few, like the mango we bought, but I had always thought that mangoes were supposed to be sweet. This time we were looking for the most green and sour one and we squeezed them to make sure that they were hard instead of soft.
She told me that when she was little her mother would make her go to the store and practice picking out the ripe vegetables so that she would be prepared when she had to cook for herself. It made me think a lot about what I am teaching Rocky. She does know that she should squeeze the avocados and that the green bananas don't taste as good as the yellow, but her real supermarket expertise comes in selecting the right kind of chocolate chips. (It is not as easy as it sounds. Nowadays there are like 20 different varieties. The last time we went we picked up the dark chocolate to try because Brandon said that they are healthy.)

You may notice the peppers in this picture. While she usually uses 5 when making this dish for herself, this time she only used 2 for our wimpy tongues. It was a good choice.


Everyone was leaning in to smell if the mustard seed had popped.



The best part, of course, was the sampling! We had the rice with Kimberly's pasta and the tomato soup recipe that I got from Cara. It actually turned out to be quite the feast.


...And in other Rigby family news...
Rocky is getting pretty tough while she does push-ups with her dad.

After all that working she likes to show off her svelte physique by adorning it with all kinds of accessories. This is what happens when she chooses her outfit.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

BFFs

Rocky's little friend Chloe comes over on Tuesdays and Thursdays while her mom and dad are in class. These two have become best buds and get into all sorts of shenanigans together.

So what if it isn't anyone's birthday. The hats are always a good idea.



In the car the two of them reach across and touch hands which sets them off into a stream of giggles. I think it is kind of a scary premonition of what we can expect to hear a lot of when Rocky is about 12. It reminds me of one time when I was a missionary and my companion Hna. Smith and I got a bad case of the giggles on a city bus. We got off at the same stop as a man who seemed to get a big kick out of it. He said, "When you have a friend that you can laugh with like that, life is good."
When I am driving and can hear those two girls laughing away I can't help but think that life really is good.


In this picture they were going over the nursery rhymes hoping to get some ideas for songs for their new band. They've been working on their Emo hairstyles but obviously Chloe is winning. Rocky's curls would probably do her more good in Nashville but they've discussed it and decided that country isn't really their scene.
It doesn't matter how nice their hair is when they start out because after the whirlwind of play they both usually look like they've been through a hurricane. But, if you think the hair looks like wild, you should see what they do to the house. It is worth it for the hours of entertainment. I clean when (if) they take their naps.


They are looking pretty guilty here. I actually made those magnets for them to play with (I know, just call me Martha Stewart) but they wouldn't think it was fun if they didn't think it was off limits.


Rocky was really sick on Tuesday so we are pretty excited to get Chloe back today.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween in Eugene


Rocky and Ron Burgundy, otherwise known as The Anchorman, were ready to broadcast the evening news. Brandon's costumes are always a big hit with the people who actually know who he is.
You may notice that she is wearing a Weber State shirt, but she's got a duck in her hand. She has mixed loyalties.


After dressing up for so many parties, Rocky felt that she needed a change of pace. The moose hat seemed a little bit like a safety hazard so we resurrected last years Ewok hood. Here is a blast from the past showing exactly how she looked one year ago, just in case you forgot that she used to be a baby.

Since she couldn't trick or treat at the houses of her grandmas she went to show off her costume to her adopted grandma in Eugene. They didn't have any treats at the restaurant so Rosi gave us a container of refried beans, which was even better.


Trick or treating was kind of a pickle. Not only was it raining, but the big U of O game was on. We went out during half time to our two neighbors, which are both pretty close considering we are in apartments. Some of you may be thinking that I am a mean and unfit mother, but I choose to believe that I was trying to protect my little Ewok from the evils of candy. Just to prove my point I'll have you know that of the three pieces of candy that she earned by knocking doors I only let her have one. Brandon and I unselfishly took the health risks upon ourselves and ate the other two. Just so you know, she got first pick and took the Butterfinger. She was also able to smooth talk her dad into about half of the Peanut Butter Cup but I wasn't going to fall for those big blue eyes and ate the Baby Ruth after she had gone to bed.
Another reason that we elected to mostly avoid the door-to-door begging is that the past week or so Rocky has gotten into the habit of running up and knocking on random doors. She thinks it is really funny and even more funny to go ahead and walk in if the door is open. I didn't think it would be very wise to let her know that if you knock on random doors that people will give you candy and tell you that you are cute.
Okay, mostly it was because I wanted to watch the game. I LOVE trick or treating and I love candy even more.

You wouldn't believe how excited she was with her Butterfinger, and we let her have all the refried beans she could eat.


I mean, look at that belly...it's not like we don't have enough treats already at this house.
In my constant pursuit of better eating habits I carefully selected the candy that seemed least appealing so that I wouldn't eat it all before the trick or treaters arrived. I picked out Nerds and a collection of Lemon-Heads "and friends." Little did I know that the friends were the new, improved, chewy Lemon Heads that are awesome. Because of the rain we had a few left that I was forced to sample. Now I guess I will have to eat the rest, so that they don't go to waste. The kind of better eating strategy that I was working on doesn't work if you are me and find that you love anything that is made of food. I ate most of the leftover Nerds too.
Maybe next year I should give out refried beans instead. I'd probably end up eating a lot of them, but at least they'd have some fiber.