Tag Archives: parenting

A farmers’ date night

11 Aug

A bit of parenting advice I hear over and over again is to keep your relationship with your spouse special: make time for each other, without the kids, and set a regular date night.

Well by night-time, I’m pretty much not fun company anymore, so last week, we went on a date breakfast. We hired a sitter, and went to La Esquina for some quiet, uninterrupted conversation. It really was recharging, and I vowed to do it again.

This week, we’ve spent a lot of time in the garden (even though I said we were taking the week off–didn’t happen!) We are mostly cleaning up the farm, getting it ready for the upcoming season. It’s like fall time in August, everything is dry and dead, except spring follows. Living in the tropics has me all crazy.

Anyway, we were rolling up this grow cloth, and sorting through what we can reuse and what we have to throw away. It got pretty romantic.


Here’s Carlos holding his end, saying, “c’mon beautiful”.


And here I am, taking baby steps towards him, eyes locked, dopey love smile on my face. Sigh.

With a job like this, who needs date night?


Playing with my 17 month old: cloud dough

18 May

Leon’s amazing fun Aunt Kim has left for the United States. His musical, entertaining Uncle Rob and sweet patient Aunt Bel have also left. That means my maternity leave is over, so I’m back teaching English to first and second graders three hours a day. It also means I’m babysitting three babies when I’m not at school (is it still called babysitting when they’re your own?)

It is so difficult! If you’ve ever been a mother, I’m sure you remember the laundry, the feeding times, the endless dirty diapers, and the infinite “no! Don’t touch that put that down right now don’t you dare go in the street come back here sit down stand up give me that put that away icky don’t eat that eat this!!!! And stop putting things in your brothers’ mouths!”

Obviously we’re still figuring this whole parenting thing out. Hopefully by the time the twins are his age I will have developed great new stores of patience, age-appropriate activities I can pull out of plastic containers like the moms on Pinterest, and most importantly, a big fenced-in area that is escape-proof. Maybe sound-proof as well. 🙂


Thankfully Carlos has been rocking it out in the garden, because if it were up to me everything would be dead, even the chickens and the goats! But it’s ok, I’m just trying to find my mothering rhythm, which at this point pretty much means entertaining Leon/picking up after him. I’m also drinking lots of chamomile tea. I find that when I can’t bear to get up after a meal and go do something, making myself a cup of tea is all I need to transition smoothly.

Today Leon and I played with cloud dough, something I’ve seen on several mommy blogs. It’s way more fun to play with then I imagined, so if you have a toddler in your life, try it out!

Corn starch
Baby oil

Put about a cup’s worth of corn starch in a bowl. Make a well in the middle, like you’re making bread dough. Fill the well with oil and stir it up. That’s it! Store covered in the fridge.

Leon and I were entertained for at least fifteen minutes, which is a lot of time in Leon’s world, and just enough for Mommy to be able to sit down for a moment.