Saturday, April 30, 2011

Don't Judge Me

Don't think any less of me but...I got up early and watched the Royal Wedding.  Yeah, I admit it.  I like that kind of stuff.  I went and got ready for work during the boring parts (who needs to see Prince Charles and Camilla arrive) and watched the MOMENT the dress was revealed to the world.  Which, by the way, I should be a commentator because the first words out of my mouth were "that is so Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier."  David wants to know how I remember crap like that.  I don't's a gift.  Useless information retainer.

I also am admitting that I taped all 8 hours of it.  I got called into work early Friday morning, (curses!) and so I came home and fast forwarded thru the boring stuff so I could see them in the carriage and the kisses on the balcony.

Everyone at work was rolling their eyes at the topic of the royal wedding (mouth breathers) and making "sick of hearing about it" comments.  I just kept my mouth shut until they KEPT talking about it and I finally butted in and answered all their ignorant questions.  

Why wasn't Obama invited?  (Me: It was a ton of royals.  Heck, Sarkozy wasn't invited either...Them: who's Sarkozy?  Me: Argh!)  

So if Will and Kate have a kid will are they before Harry?  (Me: Yes.  If it's a boy.)

Will Kate be titled a "queen" if Wills becomes King? (Me: Yes  Them: Why isn't the Queen's husband a King then?  Me: Because he is a consort, he can't be King because that title would overshadow his wife's.  Phillip renounced his own titles in Denmark and Greece to be with Elizabeth.  Them: He's from Greece?  Wow, you know a lot about this stuff.)

Let me also just add that I thought Prince Philip looked awful yesterday.  I know the ole guy is 89 or something, but he is NOT looking well these days.  After all he is the oldest living consort.  Did you know that?

AND here is my take on things.  I thought the wedding was great.  Dress was nice, a classic. Trees in the Abbey, nice to soften a bit.  Kisses?  Pretty lame.  

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


Yesterday one of my Kindergartener's was a little overzealous in his camera duties.  You see in our class, the person who is in charge of leading the pledge of allegiance for the week is also the official photographer.

My little friend was given the camera after the salute and immediately started taking pictures.  Pictures of his classmates.  Pictures of me.  Pictures of the rug he was sitting on.  In the course of 15 minutes he had taken over 100 pictures of me reading a story to the class.  It was getting very annoying, and VERY distracting.

After I finished my second book I very calmly and sweetly requested that he take one more, and give the camera a little rest.  One of his fellow students asked why and I replied, "because I'm starting to feel a little Kate Middleton," without really filtering my mouth.  The class asked who Kate Middleton was and I responded that she was about to be a princess and lots and lots of people liked to take pictures of her.

One of my students said, "Oh, I know her.  Yeah, he sure is taking a lot of pictures of you.  I can see how it gets annoying."

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


A few years ago my friend Jennifer got a red convertible and, since she was (and still is) a HUGE Springsteen fan, she went in and got vanity plates that said BRN2RUN.  The clerk at the license counter asked her if she was a runner and she laughed at him and said, no, idiot, I'm a Springsteen fan.  Who has not heard the song Born To Run?

Anyway, all that fluff to say that I am now (trying) to be a runner.  It all started a few months ago when I told you all that I was trying to watch my weight and Hannah wasn't helping since she was mid cake decorating class.  Then I went on to tell you that I was making progress because I was able to buy the next size down in pants.  Well I started making really good progress when my husband started loosing weight and the delta between our two weights was shrinking and I was starting to get a little more motivated.  So far, David has lost 25 pounds!  Wow!  Talk about all new clothes and belts!  Now David has lost 25 and I have lost 15, and the delta is only 10 I'm running.  

For a little over a week now I have been running every other day and riding the recumbent bike (to give my hip a break) on off days.  And I can't believe how well I'm doing so far.  Tonight I ran over 3 miles in 30 minutes (big deal for me) and I did NOT stop and the ONLY reason I couldn't go any further is because that darn hip of mine was about to come undone.

I am hoping this will last a while and I will continue to get in shape...maybe even get off some of my medication...woot!

Friday, April 22, 2011

I Know It's Been A While

This last week I've been doing some stuff.  I've been working overtime since my coworker had a sick child...I've been taking my Illustrator classes online (2 down!), I have been trying to figure out my life, I started jogging every other day, I've been fixing broken vacuum cleaners, I've been celebrating anniversaries, and I've been altering a prom dress.  I know, I'm bad and I should check in once and a while, but everyone has one of those weeks.  It isn't so much the busy-ness, it was more the mood.  I just haven't had the strength.


This molten lava cake I ate, yes ME.  EVERY single bit of it.  Mine was actually bigger, with pistachio ice cream, and big bowl of Chantilly cream, AND followed an 8 ounce filet and the best salad yeah, I admit I WAS A BIG OINKER.  

The salad?  The Caprice salad, which I love and always forget about making again until I have it when I am out to dinner somewhere.  I am going to attempt to recreate this evening for dinner.

LOVE it.  


My trip to Walmart with my children where I loose my cool because my Bubba was playing with a giant plastic ball, and POPPED it (the shot rang out across the whole store), THEN (not 3 minutes later) proceeded to take the giant roll of bubble wrap off the end cap and roll it down the main aisle where it BOWLED ANOTHER SHOPPER OVER.

We all left laughing, but it was touch and go for a while.  I am always afraid I am going to loose it in the middle of an aisle only to look up and see one of my Kindergarten parents frozen watching me reprimand my child.

Sunday, April 17, 2011


Sometimes, okay all the time, when I am watching a movie I'll hop on my computer and shop or do something, because I really can't sit and do one thing at a time.  Shhh.  I'm a multitasker.  Sure, I could be doing something useful like crocheting, or looking at a magazine, or cooking (too noisy), or braiding my underarm hair, but mainly I just look around on the computer.

Last night I watched a movie that had a really cute wrap dress, I know!  how 70's, so I started a google search to see what was out there.  This beautiful green updated dress came onto my radar.  It seems that a Vivienne Westwood (never heard of her) designed this, and it is no where to be found for sale, as well I'm guessing it is WAY out of my price range.  So, the question I pose is how difficult would it be to make?  I'd say pretty darn difficult with that collar and getting the scrunchy-ness of it to scrunch just so.  I guess I could be a big girl about it and make it out of the yards and yards (and yards) of curtain lining I have in my basement grotto.  Finally go about making a mock dress before using the most expensive, most beautiful, one of a kind fabric I own.  

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Baby Drama

Tuesday I resolved to get the naggy little thing that has been on my to do list marked off.  Hannah got home from school and I informed her that this was the day.  I had watched videos in preparation, You-Tube is a crazy resource, isn't it?  I had all the supplies at the ready.  We were going to clip the sugar glider's fingernails, if it killed us.  And it almost did.

Let me interject and say that our friend who turned us on to Sugar Gliders had one of his pair die because she got a scratch on her membrane, it got infected, and she was gone.  We have known all of this from the beginning and yet we've had Chili and Pepper for going on 8+ months and NEVER clipped their nails.  This coupled with the fact that it is almost short sleeve/tank top season and my arms need to heal up (from all the scratches) before I can start showing off my guns again.

So Hannah and I went in search of the babies.  The video CLAIMED that if you did the deed during the day (when they are normally asleep) it was easier, because they were groggy.  THEY WERE WRONG.  And, can I add, that Hannah is officially relieved of this task since she is such a wimp. Every time I clipped a nail she gasp that I was getting too close to the quick.

The You-Tube video also claimed that if you wrapped the baby in a towel or fleece, held it against your body, then a second person rooted around found a foot and held the hand/foot between two fingers spreading it open, it would be a breeze.  LIARS!

After 10 or so treats and weeping and gnashing of teeth we figured we averaged about 16 out of 18 nails clipped.  Did you know gliders have opposable thumbs on their feet?  With no nails?  Well, you learn something new everyday.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Sweet Little Cupcake Baked By The Devil

There's this Kindergartener I know.  Not that she is in my current class or anything, but let's say I know this Kindergartener that is a giant pill.  This Kindergartener told me the other day that they were not able to drink milk because I first needed to make it chocolate...their parent wanted me to know that this particular child was ONLY supposed to drink chocolate milk.  Because of this seemingly bold faced lie, I wrote this child's parents a note (stating kind of sarcastically) that unfortunately I did not have the ingredients to make chocolate milk and it was a state regulation that each child be offered 4 ounces a milk at each lunch.

The next day I received an apology from the parent and a face to face telling me that her child was a bold faced liar and she did not in fact need this child to only drink chocolate milk.

Duh?  You think so?

Today's incident?  Said child had the gall to upset a sweet little fellow student in a certain Kindergarten class (that shall remain nameless), insisting that this little girl's dessert was in fact their's because they were not provided any.  Get this, there was no discussion of who actually brought the dessert, of coarse sweet little child did, but since the brat was not provided dessert by their parent, it was sweet little child's duty to provided it to them.

What?  Can you say entitled?  Can you say Bratty McBratspants?  

Tasty Dinner

Okay, I admit.  I borrowed (read stole) this picture from Google, but this is exactly how my dinner looked.  It was really easy (start to finish 20 minutes) and David took one bite and said, "Add this one to the favorites list."  I thought it was a tiny bit bland, but I guess I'm used to the higher fat/more spice version in the restaurants.

My friend passed on this Rachel Ray magazine, which I had never looked at before.  In the "Yum" section there was this "Thai Noodle Bowl with Shrimp."  Here is the recipe:  4 ounces rice noodles (yeah! gluten free!), 2 cans of lite coconut milk, 1 Tbsp soy sauce, 1 Tbsp thai red curry paste, 1 pound peeled, deveined shrimp, 2 cups snow peas, salt and pepper, cilantro and lime to taste. 

Cook noodles; drain and set aside.  In same pot, bring coconut milk, soy sauce, and curry paste to a simmer.  Add shrimp and cook 1 minute.  Add snow peas and cook until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes (I added chopped red bell pepper too).  Season with salt and pepper.  Divide noodles among bowls and ladle soup on top.  Serve with cilantro and lime wedges.

Christmas in April

Remember back in December when I was talking about our family traditions and what I had decided to buy my Brother-in-Law, and his son's for Christmas?  The theme this year was food.  I don't think I ever told you what we ended up buying the three of them!

Though there were many awesome choices, we took the easiest choice (although very imaginative) and bought the three of them a beer dinner.  If you aren't sure what that is, find one and go try it.  Every month, (I know, it seems a little frequent) David and I go to a locally owned restaurant (with a group of his co-workers that have since become our friends) a we pay a flat fee to have a 6 or 7 course meal paired with complimentary beers usually from one brewer.  The menu is decided by the restaurant owner, as well as the beer selections.  The restaurant closes down for the evening, and this is a by reservation only thing.

David and I have had such wonderful food and so many different kinds of beers (I may sip one or two, but I drink Diet Coke) that for the past year we have gone about 9 out of 12 months.

My brother-in-law has been really interested in hearing about all these dinners, and usually comments on how he wishes he could find a local (to him) place that does the same type of thing.  So I hopped on the little thing called the internet and found him one.  And bought him and my over 21 nephews a spot in this month's dinner.

Why this month?  Why wait until April?  Because the featured brewer was Deschutes and David is a HUGE fan of Abyss and other Deschutes beers.  Here in Ohio Deschutes is rare, so we have to order it or con a family member to bring it.

A few days ago I received a confirmation from the nice lady at the restaurant and she forwarded me the menu.  H...o...l...y...crap.  I need to fly out for this dinner now.  THIS is why I go to these meals...

 Twilight Ale to welcome you and get you started!

Twilight Ale with fresh "first-of-the-season" Wild Alaska Halibut Ceviche and organic blue corn tortilla chips.

Green Lakes Organic Ale with blackened Wild Alaska Copper River Coho Salmon on Organic Mixed Greens with bleu cheese dressing and Willamette Valley blueberries.

Red Chair NW Pale Ale & Mirror Pond Pale Ale (taste comparison) with Chicken & Prawn Prosciutto with a lemon caper butter sauce and Yukon Gold mashers.

Hop Henge IPA with a Beef Tenderloin shiitake "shroomin' at the Hedge" and fresh Washington asparagus.

Black Butte Porter Float with Tillamook Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

This is not a choose an entree' type thing, you eat EVERY course!  Gladly!  I can honestly say that beer floats are NASTY.  I know it may be because I don't like most beers, but can I also add that I have had beer infused whipped cream on a chocolate beer infused cake and I thought it was the most heavenly thing ever?  We have eaten some pretty strange things over the last year, but I have enjoyed trying it all. How many ways can you prepare a dessert with beer in it?

Saturday, April 9, 2011

The Sour Smell of Soccer Season

Some families have football, some baseball, but we are a soccer family.  Both kids exclusively play soccer (so far) and today was the start of the spring season.  We love it.  The family falls into a routine and usually plays two nights a week and all morning on Saturday.

Bubba's game started us off this morning, and while his was finishing David and Hannah walked over to her game.  As soon as they left it started to rain, and rain, and rain...and by the time we caught up with them at Hannah's field, David and Hannah jumped in the car to wait and see if she would play.  The thunder prevailed and the game was called, so we went to 5 Guys Burgers and Fries to celebrate the start of the season (and the fact the government did not shut down!).

David and I decided after today's game that Bubba's orange shorts would mysteriously disappear.  While it is very easy to pick him out on the field with the unfortunate jersey color, he doesn't need to accentuate his watermelon jersey with neon orange shorts.  I told him he looked like a highlighter.

He Wants to Start A Rock Band

Over Spring Break Bubba decided that he wanted to start a rock band with his friend Josh.  The two boys spent the night together planning and researching what type of equipment they will need for their band.  Bubba decided that he will need $400.

Then Bubba remembered something that his teacher told him last year.  Mrs. C had shared with the class that in order to pay for her first car, she planted vegetables and took them around to neighbors and sold them from her wagon.  

Inspired, Bubba and his buddies ripped up the bushes along the back of our house (with my permission), tilled the soil and planted some spinach and lettuce.

I didn't object or argue with Bubba's scheme because I got free yard work!  I also didn't explain that Mrs. C is in her late 50's and times have changed.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Let's Talk Politics

I am not about talking politics on this blog, but things change, so hold on to your hat for this post.  If you are here to read something funny try this post or this one, otherwise, here goes…

The American Government is frustrating and frankly the last weeks and months of this “Government Shutdown” discussion makes me crazy (pardon the pun) Postal mad.

My husband, like many others in this country, is a very hard worker, but he internalizes too much and sometimes his work drives him to the point of zero sleep and the emergency room, like it did last month.

Since the “Government Shutdown” talks all began David has been very worried about the fact that his job fell under the “you are on furlough” and don’t get paid list.  He has been careful not to use sick or vacation time, and our family spending has decreased in anticipation of this possible shutdown.  David’s co-workers asked questions during their weekly meetings the last few months, and no real information was given except that David and his co-workers would not be allowed to enter the building during the impending shutdown.

Just as if we had just bought a new car, and suddenly noticed every car driving down the street that was the same as ours, every time the news had a headline of “Government Shutdown” ours ears perked up and we took notice.  This subject became part of our nightly discussion.  I began reading things on news sites regarding who is interfering with the agreements, and what their major issues were.  Opposition to Planned Parenthood, who supplies breast cancer screenings and birth control pills to uninsured women all because of the abortion issue?  Seriously?  Family members who lost a loved one during combat will not receive death gratuities because a couple of morons can’t come to an agreement over an organization that supports women’s health? mad.  I have made no attempt to hide my political affiliation, and am quite underwhelmed by the idiocy of the so-called representatives.  Like other Americans I am shocked to be reminded that whilst Military personnel may not be paid for their full service, and hourly employees at places like National Parks and other Government agencies, congress (who can’t get their crap together in agreement) will continue to be paid without interruption so they can pay their bills.

Yesterday David came home from work (after an 11 hour day) and informed me that his employer told them that if they worked during the shutdown, even from home, they would be fined.  Greatly.  There was to be NO WORK done.  No emails sent, even under personal accounts, or heads would roll.  David’s ideas of bringing work and supplies home suddenly changed.

This morning, David woke at 4:30 a.m. and ran into work so he could get the most out of his (possible) last day of work.  He worked like a dog all day.  Just after 5pm I called him to ask if he needed me to drop some dinner by or if we should just eat without him.  David picked up the phone and said he was just e-mailing me a letter the staff had just received from his boss.  Apparently after all these months of worry and preparation, at 5 p.m. on the day of the shutdown, David is informed that he is NOT affected, but his boss is. 

This is wonderful news for us, but it still does not change my current distaste for our government and it’s lame ability to make decisions that effect it’s constituents.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Took The Plunge

I finally took the plunge and went on Amazon and bought myself the Adobe suite.  This may not sound like much to some, but it is the first step in my big girl thoughts of deciding what in the h e double hockey sticks I am going to do with my life.

Amazon, AND Adobe for that matter, have this little deal that if you are buying the software and you are in school or teach school, you get the suite for 80% off!  Yes, you heard me correctly, eighty percent off.  Even if you are K-12!  So there's another reason I have to tell my kids that I need them and love them tonight.

The plan is that I buy the Adobe suite...(check)...then I go and take some community college classes (cheap) to get all familiar with my new software and see how much I like "doing" graphic stuff...THEN I make the big decision as to if I really want to be a graphic designer and pay to go to school for graphic design.

David and I have been talking about married stuff lately and one of the conclusions we have come to is that we don't make leaps of faith.  Sure, I've moved to three different states in my married life, but we don't take chances like "I'm going to quit my job and go in a different direction" type of chances.  Over the past week or so we keep coming up with past life scenarios and how we did not take certain chances.  I am a firm believer in God has a plan for my life, but there have been some scenarios I've regretted.  So this has led me to start taking chances.  I've even gotten out of my hermit shell and called people and made social arrangements!

Am I finally growing up for real?

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Quiet Please

I walked into the library today and had a bit of a flashback.  A traumatic flashback.  

Let me pause the story right here to tell you that I don't give anyone my full given married name except on forms.  Who would?  Frankly it is none of anyone's business, and I would not want to give any of you internet stalkers the chance to uber stalk me.  So for the story's sake let's just say the full name on my social security card is Cara Jane Doe Whatever.

Back to the library. Today I walked in, tucked my head down and ran to pick up my reserved items, and ran out.  What causes this reaction?  A few months ago I was at the library with my whole fam damily.  I had convinced my parents (who were mid-six week visit at the time) and my kids to get out of the house and go in search of books, videos, etc.  Basically we were grasping at straws because I was loosing it with this much family togetherness.  We walked in the door, the kids deposited the books and videos we were returning on the return desk, and split up to head off to our respective sections.  

I was in the back 40 of the library showing my Mom the Inspirational fiction section, when over the loudspeaker (who knew libraries had loudspeakers?)  the librarian yells (the loudspeaker is so rarely used she doesn't understand the concept of amplification) ATTENTION PLEASE!  ATTENTION PLEASE!  WILL CARA JANE DOE WHATEVER PLEASE REPORT TO THE FRONT DESK IMMEDIATELY.  WILL CARA JANE DOE WHATEVER PLEASE REPORT TO THE FRONT DESK IMMEDIATELY.  CARA...JANE...DOE...WHATEVER.  CARA.........JANE.........DOE.........WHATEVER.

Imagine my horror.  The library was quiet, it was a library after all, and I looked at my Mom, eyes wide and we both started giggling.

As I am walking up the main aisle, red faced, making the walk of shame, my eldest (ever the comedian) walks toward me from the teen section and loudly whispers, "ooohhh, Mom's in trouuuuble."  All eyes turn toward me.

My Dad, walking over to see what is happening, forgets he is in a library and asks loudly why they are calling my name.

Bubba, emerging from the kid's section stage whispers, "Mom!  Mom!  You going to the front desk?"


Seriously?  It has been 30 seconds since you last interrupted EVERYONE at the library and called out my name.

I finally get to the front desk and tell the librarian who I am and she smiles and hands me a stack of books.  It seems that when we went to return our library books some non-library books got into the stack.  Books that I had borrowed from my friend Holly.  The librarian just wanted to make sure I got my books back.

I understand that the librarian was doing me a big favor, but a loudspeaker? In a freaking library?  Sure I hear the greeting Mrs. Whatever everyday at work (which is a tad weird and I am finally not turning around looking for my mother-in-law when I hear the greeting), or since there are two Cara's at work a co-worker may refer to me as Cara Whatever, but how often do you hear your full given married name?  Over a loudspeaker?  

Sunday, April 3, 2011

The End

Spring Break is officially over.  Back to school tomorrow.  How depressing is that?  Here are some of the things I accomplished over the break:

1. Pruned a tree in our yard.  Bagged all the pruning.  Looked like I had held hands with Edward Scissorhands for days.
2. Patched and painted the 4" x 4" square that has been sitting unfinished in our laundry room since we installed new cabinets over a year ago.
3. Hemmed and mended all the items form the Gap store purchased this week.
4. Hemmed and mended stack in basement grotto.
4. Watched an insane amount of movies.  If I had to guess I would say at least 20.
5. Took all my spring clothes out and put all the sweaters away.
6. Sewed two purses, I know.  I know.  No pictures posted!
7. Rearranged Hannah's room.
8. Hung cork on Hannah's wall for her necklaces.
9. Sewed accessories for Hannah's dresser.
10. Exercised.  
11. Read a book.
12. Went to an Omnimax movie.
13. Tried new recipes.
14. Hosted sleepovers.

I'm sure there is more, but that was a pretty productive week in all.  

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Speaking of Dad's Cooking

Yesterday I hinted at my Dad's cooking skilz with his fabulous bacon will never guess what my Dad's other famous food was?  Fried Egg Sandwiches.  It was a tradition with Dad.  Typically my Mom would cook a roast or something Sunday-ish (early years) or we'd go out after church(Captain Nemo's-later years) every Sunday from the time I was in Elementary school until my college years.  But Sunday night?  Sunday night if we were hungry my Dad would make his special fried egg sandwiches.  Or popcorn.

A couple of years ago my sister and I asked him to make us his special sandwiches, and he almost burned the kitchen down, but we did learn the secret to his sandwiches.  Miracle Whip.

Our Mom is a strict mayonnaise girl, but Dad HAS TO have his Miracle Whip.  And after all those years it was a duh moment.  His secret ingredient was the Miracle Whip.  That is the taste I'd been searching for.

Friday, April 1, 2011

It May Seem Like A Prank...

Photo Courtesy of Rainy Day Gal

But it is NOT.  No sir, this is not a prank.  I know it is April Fool's Day, but I swear.  No pranks.  I was just surfing the net and found this via CRAFT and I am SO trying this!  Bacon Cinnamon rolls?  Sheer GENIUS!  

Got to the Rainy Day Gal website and see her simple recipe, then look around at all her cool recipes.  This site is a keeper, sure I may be biased because of my Seattle upbringing, but this Seattle chick is awesome.  Her basic instructions are hilarious.  Except she precooks her bacon.

So why am I drawn to this gastronomic disaster?  Is it because I am dieting?  Do you think I am super weird?  No, it is because my Dad used to make my favorite'st Dad breakfast ever.  Are you ready for it?  Wait for it...Waffles with raw bacon placed in the batter before cooking.  Seriously. The best breakfast EVER.  When I was home last Christmas I asked my Dad to help me make them and, gasp, they had thrown away their ancient waffle iron!  I was crushed!!!  You threw away the waffle iron you have had for 50 years? Can you tell I am a little sentimental? You have NO waffle iron? Dad can't make bacon waffles anymore?  Now that is a crime.  I considered going to Target and buying a waffle iron, but the seasoning, and  all that deterred me.

Don't think about the fact that my Dad served us food that wasn't cooked all the way, or all the nitrates, or all the fat, or what parasite could have been living on that semi cooked bacon, I loved that breakfast and will most likely dream about it tonight.

What was your favorite breakfast that your Dad made you?