I've done it!!! I made an acceptable loaf of bread! (Mary Louise approved:)
So, my criteria for the recipe were as follows:
1. low sodium
2. low confection (processed sugar)
3. stone ground whole wheat / grain
4. bread machine friendly
It took 5 tries - 3 were total failures. But number 5 was the charm. Hands on time: about 15 minutes (I had to wrestle my ingredients away from the toddler brigade!). I can do this! Fresh homemade preservative free bread!
Mary Louise and David were wild most of the day. We needed some organized activity and the weather was questionable. Enter: cookie experiment. Before bread, we (yes we) made cookies. Mary Louise and David are total fans of the stand mixer. They helped measure, drop, measure, spoon and of course EAT! The cookies came out really well (apparently, it was a spot on baking day - and believe me, I am no pro baker). Thanks Bob's Red Mill for coming through with some really nice whole grain recipes! I only substituted a Splenda baking blend for the sugar (Brent follows Sugar Busters).
The fiascoes of the day:
1.Mary Louise and David spilled (and played in) an entire box of quinoa IN the pantry and on the kitchen floor
2. David tried to "paint" the TV - using yogurt and a metal baby spoon
3. food was smashed, smooshed, and stomped into the floor - numerous times
4. David absolutely destroyed one of his story books
and the grand finale:
Brent was playing with Mary Louise and David and their toys. Mary Louise had a few dolls and her pink tub from the NICU. Brent said, "Mary Louise, did you know that was your very first bath tub? It seemed huge at the time because you were soooo tiny! But it was! It was the first place you took a bath. David, you have one too. You each had your own tub and Mommy and Daddy would visit everyday and loved giving you baths in those tubs."
I was turning the bread out onto a cooling rack. Brent came to take a look and we talked for a minute about something. I noticed that David was at our feet - but the house was very quiet and Mary Louise had disappeared from the play room. I called for her...nothing. I looked for her and noticed the laundry / bathroom door slightly open...
I heard water running...
I found Mary Louise standing on her little stool at the sink - water on - pink tub overflowing in the basin - water covering the floor. She was stripped down to her diaper (which is why she is in only a diaper in the videos). She turned to me and sheepishly whispered, "my take a baff Mommy?"
Sweet baby girl. That's all I've got for that one.
A little while later, I caught Mary Louise showing her true colors:
The above depicts our regular routine during "the witching hour" just before we start bed time preparation. It also demonstrates why I HATE phone calls, unannounced visits, or any other outside interruptions during this time. The kids are about all I can handle that time of day.
David was so sweet "cooking" soup and exploring the different sounds on different pots. Note that he is totally and 100% un-phased by Mary Louise's shenanigans...same birthday - but that's about it as far as similarity!
LOVE these kiddos.
P.S. I forgot to mention that Mary Louise spontaneously counted to 8 correctly!! It's in the above video - a little hard to weed out, but it's there! This is the first time she's counted past 3! Amazing! Also, The breathing treatments seem to have worked. She had just one today and had 2 doses of OTC cough / decongestant. He nose and sinuses are still congested, but she's getting better everyday. This evening, she went to sleep snoring, but only gently and her mouth was closed - win. David is getting better as well - just a very slight runny nose left - no meds, no cough. I feel better as well. Brent has allowed me to squeeze in a couple of naps which have worked wonders along with salt water gargling. I've cleaned and wiped and cleaned in hopes of keeping this sniffle contained to a one time showing. We'll see - but we seem to be on the mend for now!