7 Quick Takes - John Paul-style

Friday, May 3, 2013

Ah, woken up at 2 AM by the smoke detectors that have decided to make random, intermittent, and very LOUD beeps (but not enough that would make us think something is, say, smoking...).  Turned off the heat, disconnected the detectors, and am now praying that we don't wake up dead in the morning because there was a secret fire somewhere...   But since I'm up I might as well post these, right?
Oh, the escapades of my firstborn.  I was nursing the babies yesterday when I heard a strange clicking coming from the kitchen.  Cecilia was taking her sweet time on the potty ("MOM come watch me poop!!!  MOM hug my while I poop!!!") so I knew it wasn't her...

Then John Paul came in, crunching something in his mouth. 

"What are you eating, John Paul?"

"A crunchy bear."  These are the chewable vitamins the kids eat

"How did you get it?These are in a childproof container on one of the highest shelves in the kitchen.  He DEFINITELY climbed up on a counter and got one out of the cabinet while standing on the high counter. 

No answer.  Well, I knew the answer anyway.

"How many did you eat?"

"Just ONE!" He announced, pleased with himself for exercising self-control and following my instructions.

Now, I honestly couldn't be that angry with him - he knew what he was allowed to have, it just didn't occur to him that he wasn't supposed to be the one getting one.  And since he's been exercising his independence in the kitchen so much (a little too much...) lately, it was the obvious solution to get himself a vitamin instead of bothering mom! 

"Well...  Go get one for Cecilia too."

And then he happily grabbed one for her and fed it to her while she finished up on the potty.

High shelves?  No longer safe.

Childproof containers?  Not even close.

We are screwed.


John Paul decided he wanted applesauce yesterday but NOT the applesauce we already had in the fridge.  No, he wanted to make his OWN applesauce.  And thus he embarked upon a culinary journey...


First he took an apple out of the fridge and placed it in a bowl of water, telling me "The water will help the apple grow.  It will grow and then it will be applesauce on Monday!  And we will eat it on Epiphany!"

Then I explained to him that's not how growing works.  Or applesauce.  I told him that to make applesauce we had to cook the apples and then mash them up.

So he found a toy microphone to be his masher, and started mashing the apple bobbing in a measuring cup full of water.  I made him take it to the playroom so he wouldn't make a mess in the kitchen, and apparently that inspired him to add more ingredients...


When I checked on him next (to bring him an actual potato masher so he would stop using the microphone), he had added a little milk, carrots, and bread to his "applesauce."

THEN he had the brilliant idea that he needed to CUT the apple up!  So he grabbed the plastic scalpel from his doctor kit (which he had used that morning to cut up his breakfast banana), but it wasn't sharp enough to cut the apple.  He stole my metal measuring spoons and those were perfect!  Little scoops of apple were added to the mixture of milk, water, whole wheat bread, and carrots.  He dutifully mashed it and left it to sit.

I figured he realized that he wasn't *really* making applesauce.  But when he went to check on it after Andrew came home and tossed it out, he was nearly in tears with the devastation.  "WHERE IS MY APPLESAUCE???" he cried out, in a shocked and nearly sobbing voice.

He got over it almost immediately when he realized it was time for dinner and that he would get to eat ANOTHER one of his glorious creations!!!


Have you seen this pin?

Halved Potatoes, cooked face down on a layer of butter, garlic salt, Parmesan cheese. Bake at 400 for 45 min. Oh my word.
I repinned it from The Pioneer Woman but the link is dead!  And those instructions are not quite enough for my detail-loving self.  So John Paul asked if he could help me cook and after he spent 15 minutes washing his hands (during which time I assembled all the ingredients and cut up the potatoes), and he was SO excited to help cook!

I present to you...  A pinnable version of this recipe with ACTUAL QUANTITIES!

5-6 medium potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch thick rounds
1/2 stick butter, melted
Garlic salt
1 cup shredded parmesan (or 1/2 cup powdered parmesan)

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Mix butter, garlic salt, and parmesan on a baking sheet.
2.  Place potatoes flat side down on baking sheet mixture.  Sprinkle with garlic salt.
3.  Bake for 30-40 minutes, until largest potato pieces are soft when pricked with a fork.

WHOA and I can link this up with Dorian Speed and be a Pinisher!  Win!!!


So easy a 3-year-old could do it!


And he's sleeping well tonight, thank goodness!  We went for a 1.2-mile (round trip) walk to the frozen yogurt place and back.  He ran/walked at a VERY brisk pace the whole way while I wore Mary Claire and Andrew pushed Cecilia and Elizabeth in the stroller.  Normally he's up for 30 minutes or more after he gets tucked in, singing or shouting or whatever.  Tonight?  Absolute silence.  Beautiful!
Check out more takes at Jen's!


  1. I'm making those potatoes ASAP.

    And as usual, I got a kick out of your JP stories. :)

    1. They're so yummy! I may have eaten like, half of them before they even made it to the table...

  2. My 2.5 year old has figured out high shelves (I've learned to listen for the sound of a chair sliding across the kitchen) but I believe child-proof lids are still beyond him, a locked screen door not so much ~ found him outside twice yesterday.

    Thanks for the recipe.

  3. You are a pinterest queen. P-dub who?

    J learned how to climb out of the tub this week (humor me I know it gets worse) but I was flipping out about that. Nothing is safe haha

  4. Benjamin ate the entire bottle of gummy vitamins that he got in his Christmas stocking! They weren't in a high cabinet, but they do have a child-proof lid, so I thought they were safe. Nope! At 2 and a half he could open those! And for the record, poison control didn't sound concerned when I called!

    1. Those lids should be labeled as "adult-proof" instead.

      But wait, double-take—he got vitamins in his Christmas stocking? Is this a family tradition? Ach du Lieber . . .

    2. I try to limit the amount of "stuff" my kids get for holidays, so their stockings are typically filled with fruit, toothbrushes, new socks, vitamins, etc. They've never complained, so I keep it up! Plus, they love gummy vitamins (obviously!)

    3. Good to know poison control didn't care! I imagine there will be a time in our future when ONE of the kids ingests an entire bottle of children's vitamins... And we go with the same stocking philosophy! The kids got new toothbrushes in their Easter baskets and it was one of their absolute favorite things :)

  5. Haha! Funny story! Impressed with his culinary interest at his ripe young age! If only I could borrow some... :)

  6. So totally making some (the potatoes, not the applesauce)!

    1. Yeah that applesauce... Something about the water-logged bread really turned me off :P

  7. Haha! I'm impressed he only ate one, I mean I could eat those things like candy!

    Those potatoes looks fabulous!

  8. Wow..I'm super impressed he only ate 1 vitamin..they are like candy!

    Those potatoes look awesome...I'm making them this weekend for sure.

    1. I know, I have trouble limiting myself sometimes! They're so yummy!

  9. Those potatoes look really good! And congratulations on being a PINISHER. Bonus points for combining two linkups in one post. I think I may go for a Five Favorites Theme Thursday Seven Quick Takes this week...

    1. Yes!!! ALL THE LINK-UPS!!!

    2. Important update: trying the potatoes now. I was going to tell you this on Twitter but I can't figure out if you are ON Twitter. I shall report back. We are out of butter somehow so I am usng olive oil instead. I bet it will not be as good.

    3. I am back to report that they were a big hit with most of the family, and the picky eaters don't get a say anyhow.

  10. The potatoes look wonderful and I think I'm going to try it with a mix of sweet and red potatoes today to go with our low-effort mini-pizzas for dinner.

  11. New favourite. The sweet potatoes were also good although they didn't crisp up much.

    Yum. Thank you.

    1. Yay I'm glad you liked them! I bet the sweet potatoes were good too - did they take the same amount of time to cook? For some reason they always take longer than regular potatoes for me...

  12. A little less. I would either parbake the white potatoes first or do a separate tray next time. And I've already made the just-regular-potatoes ones again. Perfect.


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