Sunday, February 28, 2010

marching on

All right. I've been pretty lazy in February. It feels as if the month has slipped away from me. I hope I don't do the same with March. So, I'm here to make a few resolutions for March.

-- meal plan again (nothing elaborate, but it really helps when I actually write it down)
-- plan something for Cardo's birthday and take him out
-- throw Pic's party (um, yeah, Supermom strikes again)
-- get rid of three pieces of clutter a day each day (this will probably end up being mainly things like junk mail and unneeded paperwork, but that's okay)
-- make pretzels!
-- figure out how to celebrate the equinox (ideas?)
-- don't participate in NaBlo (for whatever reason, it's harder for me to post when I have to)

Nothing particularly big or important, but here it is.


Ah, and now, February's NaBloPoMo is over!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

the struggle within

I've been struggling a lot lately. My most dreaded question, very often asked of me, is "What have you been doing lately?" or any variation thereof. I always want to be flip and say, "Nothing much. Just hanging out." I resort to this because I have a hard time not earning money myself. I hate that I link the "value" of my life, of my contribution to my family, to money, but I do it anyhow.

I don't want to get too far into this right now -- or ever, really. I know I'm not the only one who struggles with this. I was talking to Auntie L about this just the other day and we're both trying to find some kind of balance in our respective lives.

I (let myself) get so overwhelmed by the details in my life, that I start to feel as if I'm drowning or being suffocated. I dream big dreams and then fall into despondency when I realize there are so many little details that need to be taken care of me to reach those dreams. I definitely, very often, forget to enjoy where I am and what I'm doing; I forget that life is way too short to fill it up with worry and doubt.

Tonight, though, curled up on the armchair, Pic snuggled into the blanket with me, Cardo nearby on the couch, I took a moment to let myself fill with the joy that being with my family can bring. We were watching a DVD of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood and Pic and I were loving it while Cardo was shaking his head and letting me know that he thinks I'm weird and Pic's following me down that road. It was nice to just take a step back from the bills and the debts and the lack of...purpose in my life right now. I need to step back (or jump back!) more often.

I was even more focused on my family today after I heard news about the earthquake in Chile that hit earlier today. My heart goes out to the Chileans. And, at the same time, my heart is firmly rooted here, in my little home.

it's like an orange on a toothpick

"S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y NIGHT! Bay City Rollers"

I always think of So I Married an Axe Murderer when I hear this.

Friday, February 26, 2010

sunday always comes too late

"The Cure Friday Im In Love"*

* Just in case, I thought I'd again mention that I'm simply including the titles as they are posted on youtube. Okay, then.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

c'mon everybody, get up off the floor

"Original Song - Wednesday, Thursday"

What can I say? Hmm. (If only I could hear more of the lyrics...)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

(nearly) ww: kinsey cuisine

crunchy peanut butter, pickles, squaw bread

$25 and pieces of silver

"Wednesday Morning 3 A.M." [No video, just the one image throughout.]

I should probably also add a "hmm" to this. I haven't heard it before. It's strange -- at least without knowing some kind of a story behind it.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

secret ingredients

Okay, so there's nothing secret about baking soda and vinegar. I know, I know, could I possibly go on any more about these ordinary kitchen staples (they're definitely staples in my home)? Um, yes. I could. And, I will.

Shampoo tends to build up in my hair. I've always had this problem. Perhaps all shampoo-users have this problem. I don't know. Anyhow, I apparently still have this problem with shampoo bars. (Why would it be any different?, I suppose.) There's been so much build-up in my hair that combing my hair after washing and toweling it dry has felt like my comb is a little hand attached to a very strong arm -- a little hand that is trying to yank every one of my hairs out. Ow.

I've been switching back and forth between my two shampoo bars, but that hasn't been helping of late. Finally, last night, I went back to washing my hair with baking soda. Then, I rinsed it with a ton (okay, a cup) of apple cider vinegar. And, oh geez, was that cider unpleasantly cold running down my back. After I got out of the shower and toweled my hair dry, I got out my comb and combing my hair was like cutting through room-temperature butter with a hot knife. So nice.

Okay, so I smelled like I was dying Easter eggs in the shower, but it worked. (I haven't dyed Easter eggs for over a decade, but that scent memory came back to me immediately.)

I'm going to try using a half-and-half water and vinegar solution as detangler from here on out and see how that goes. Pic's not a fan, she let me know tonight. The smell was too overwhelming for her. (She told me it smelled too salty. Mmm-kay.) The smell goes away. I like being able to comb my hair, even if it sometimes looks as if I never actually do comb it.


And, so, before I head off to bed, let me just note that I just finished mopping the bathroom floors with a water and white vinegar solution. Yes, I'm addicted.

still, i'm going to miss you

"Ruby Tuesday (ORIGINAL STEREO)"

Monday, February 22, 2010


We went to buy Tylenol today and the cashier ringing us up was a black man. (Yes, I think the color of his skin plays a part in this story.) As we were finishing up our purchase, the woman in line behind us, as way of introduction I guess, asked the cashier, "Nigeria?" No, "Hi" or anything else, just the question. He smiled at her and said, "No, but you're close. I'm from Ghana." She responded with, "I haven't been there, but I want to go. I've been to six of your countries."

Our transaction was finished by that point and that's the last I heard. She seemed to be a nice enough person, from what I could guess from that momentary encounter near her. And he didn't seem to mind the questioning.

It struck me as odd, though. I can't imagine going to another continent, telling someone I'm from the United States and having them respond, "I've been to two of your other countries, but not yours." Or something like that. (Not so much to choose from here in North America.)

Also, I still find it odd that "we" seem to think that Africa is some unified, homogenous place. All of Africa. I have no idea what Ghana is like, I don't know if it's anything like the six other African countries the international-traveler had been to. I'm kind of guessing that these countries weren't exactly alike, but I don't know how they seemed to her.

I just found the whole short exchange interesting, obviously.


Obviously, I'm assuming that by "your" as in "your countries," the woman meant "Africans'."

Also, I've never really been anywhere other than a small, small part of my own country. (Okay, I have been to London for about a second, but I'll not dwell on that.) Perhaps, depending on the places you visit within a country, it might be difficult to really get a feel for a country's distinct identity. I'm kind of willing to bet that there are plenty of comparable places within the US, Canada and Mexico. Not exactly alike, but alike enough to someone who hasn't experienced such in her or his own home country.

monday music

I couldn't possibly not post this under "monday music". (Litotes! I've employed them! (It?))

"Bangles Manic Monday"

Sunday, February 21, 2010

monochromatics...kind of

brown breakfast. I know, I know, the citrus adds a splash of color, but, really, not much. I made steel-cut oats this morning and they were definitely yummy, although a bit salty. I'll cut back on the salt next time. The bread is toasted squaw bread from HoB, certo. The tea is earl grey. I have a ridiculous amount of tea bags and I'm trying to use them all up by drinking several mugs of hot tea a day.

white winter. I wasn't going to post a picture of the snow today, but, well, I'm doing it anyhow. Pic got an umbrella at Goodwill yesterday and she was very excited to be able to bring it out today.

how long?

"Sunday bloody sunday (live)"

Saturday, February 20, 2010

mamma blues

Last night, I finished rewatching all of the Gilmore Girls episodes. (Please note that I said I finished, as in I did not watch seven seasons of a show in one stretch.)

I know that I'm an incredibly sentimental person and just about everything (seriously) gets to me. I just can't help it. That said, there was of course no way the end of the series wasn't going to get to me. The show started with Rory, the daughter, beginning private school in her second year of high school and ended with Rory graduating college.

I am right now dealing with the knowledge that Pic will be starting school in six months and my emotional state is middling. I'm both looking forward to this change and, well, not. And, I know that in thirteen to seventeen or so years, I'll be thinking, "She was just entering kindergarten yesterday." And, I'll be a blubbering mess, I'm sure.

Okay, I shouldn't get ahead of myself. We have a long way to go to get there. I plan on enjoying it, reveling in it, actually.

"Gilmore Girls: The Last Scene"

Thursday, February 18, 2010

it's a beautiful day...

When I was younger, it seemed the big PBS children's show was Sesame Street. I, however, was very into Mister Rogers'. I had no idea the show had been around for so long or that Fred Rogers was so beloved by so many others. Didn't matter; I thought he was awesome.

Pic has had exactly one experience with Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. One night, a night that feels so long ago now, she was sick and we were up all night (she does not sleep when she's sick, and, therefore, neither do I). When we finally reached five or six in the morning (whatever the first hour of PBS Kids is), I turned on PBS and Mister Rogers' was on. All was going well and Pic calmly watched, UNTIL...someone dressed in a gorilla costume came on the screen (I was so deliriously tired, I wasn't really following what was going on so I have no idea why the gorilla-suited character appeared) and Pic screamed bloody-murder. It was not fun having to calm her down after that. So, that was it for her and Mister Rogers'. Okay, so that's not the only reason. It was on so very, very early there was no way we were going to get up and watch it. However, I'm thinking it might be about time to reintroduce the show to her. I'm sure we can find plenty of episodes through the interweb and Netflix and such.

Anyhow, today, 19 February, marks the forty-second anniversary of the show's beginning. That's some major staying power.

girl crush?

Why can we not just say, “I have a crush on Cate Blanchett? [for example]” Why do we feel the need to specify “girl crush”?

I was browsing through Self a while back and saw that one of the readers wrote that Amanda Peet is her girl crush. Is a “girl crush” something we are expected to have, as if to prove our normalcy? Why can’t we just say “crush”? Do we have to point out that, “Oh no! Someone might think I’m gay if I don’t specify ‘girl crush’”? Whatever.

I have a crush on Cate Blanchett (among other people).

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

nablo exhaustion

Um, yeah, at times NaBlo seems more like a chore than anything else. And, I've completed enough chores for the day.

"Fred & Ginger: Too Hot to Handle"

"Fred Astaire + Michael Jackson - Smooth Criminal [short film] HQ"

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

boob tube

We've finally started watching some of the Olympics' coverage (Olympics coverage?...does the coverage belong to the Olympics? eh). I like to watch the games, but it has also finally led me to miss having a DVR. I don't watch tv with commercials, which I don't normally think about, but which I actually like. It's frustrating to watch five minutes of a sport and then what feels like ten minutes of commercials. And, if I have to watch one more McDonald's commercial...argh!

Plus, we turned the coverage on at about eight, when it resumes here after evening news (or after we watch someone build a something on PBS) and my eyes started glazing over almost two hours into the coverage. I just cannot sit and watch this much tv when so much of it feels pointless. (Ooh, wait, there's a male figure skater with a skeleton costume on. I have to watch this. Okay, he's finished -- and "clearly not in the same league as the other men" -- so now for ten more minutes of ads for BMWs, Mickey D's and weird shows coming after the Olympics end (really -- there's a show where Alec Baldwin, Jerry Seinfeld and Kelly Ripa make fun of your marriage or, no).)

Pic and I walked a ridiculous amount today. So, at this point, I'm wanting to watch the rest of tonight's coverage, but I'm exhausted. As part of our errands, though, we stopped by two of our local libraries and I picked up Moosewood Restaurant New Classics, and I just might be up the rest of the night paging through this, making a list of future meals and foods. Among many, many others: quick cinnamon biscuits, peach oats brulee, cauliflower with polonaise topping and sesame rice (which, I see, I wrote as "sesame street"). Mmm.

Really, though, I have to get to bed soon. I can't handle much more tv. G'night.

Monday, February 15, 2010


We saw our dearly beloved friends tonight. We invited them over for dinner. It has been much, much too long since the last time we've seen them and it was great to reconnect.

To prepare for dinner tonight, I put all the food together at two this afternoon. The little 'uns were fast asleep (!), having worn each other out, I suppose, so I figured I'd better use what time I had before they were up again being their silly, wacky selves. I made black bean and chicken enchiladas. Gringa enchiladas. I'm told enchiladas are a use-up-what-we've-got-on-hand kind of a dish, when I always thought there was a specific recipe or set of recipes. I didn't do anything too fancy and the only thing I made from scratch was the chicken, which was made previous to tonight. That was an adventure in itself. I've only ever made a whole chicken maybe once before and after all the initial gagging and revulsion I experienced this time, I might not be doing it again anytime soon. (As I've often said, if I had to kill and dress (ha!) our meats, we'd definitely be vegetarians.) After some initial freaking out though -- all the while trying not to freak out because Pic was helping me make the chicken -- all turned out well and we had *tons* of chicken. It's almost all gone now. So, the enchiladas? I didn't take a picture. I thought about taking a picture of them before I cooked them, but I just didn't and then I forgot. Oops. Simple stuff. Smashed black beans and pulled chicken inside flour tortillas. That laid in a pan, covered with store-bought sauces and shredded cheese. I covered the pans with aluminum foil and put all that in the refrigerator until it was time to heat it all up for dinner tonight. I served it with TJ's canned corn. I know how lazy I sound, but I'm really not a cook and this was as much as I wanted to take on today. Oh, also Cardo (my love) made guacamole and we had that with store-bought tortilla chips.

[The chicken is featured here. I mainly based it on the recent chicken recipe on Dalai Mama Dishes. This was way more than I ate at that meal. Well, way more chicken. We also had (over-)roasted green beans (oops), bruschetta and kale slaw.]

While we were on vacation last week, I felt like I ate horribly. I remained very aware of what I was eating and I really didn't do too badly, but I was definitely on vacation in more than one sense. So, this week, I'm working on a somewhat slow recovery of sorts from that. Despite having an extra kid hanging out today, I felt like today was the first really routine day we've had since the move and my eating is settling down also. For lunch, I had roasted vegetables and some of the day-old HoB baguette we bought on Saturday. I heated the baguette in the oven after I took the vegetables out, which gives the bread a nice crunch. Mmm. We actually live in a place where sunlight streams directly onto our little bit of countertop space, and I couldn't resist a picture.

So, while I'm working to regulate my eating, the chocolate heart-shaped bread we also bought at HoB on Saturday has been teasing me since we got it home. Mmm, again. In fact, I can hear it calling me now (which would actually be pretty disturbing, were I to mean that literally).

Here's to good friends and good food.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

no score and five years ago...

Pic joined us on the outside, as I like to say.

This is Cardo and Pic at my graduation, three months after she was born.

Today, during a conversation, she told me something like, "Oh, I heard that music when I was four years old." As in, yesterday.

She's excited to be five. I'm happy and...grasping at this too quick passing of time. I don't really yearn for her days as a baby (and I don't daydream about having another baby) and I don't wish that she'd be grown up already. I'm just reveling in her now five-year-old-ness.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

leaky snot faucet

This pretty much describes my current state. I don't feel too death-on-toasty, but my nose will not stop running. Let's hope (please) that I feel better by tomorrow. We have an early walk scheduled.

In the meantime, a blast from the past. I posted the following on Thursday, February 14, 2008 at 2:44 a.m.:

goodbye toddler, hello preschooler; or, my baby always

In eleven hours and twenty-nine minutes, Pic will be three. Everything, every "milestone" feels big at the time, I'm sure (I think...I can't quite remember), but this feels strange. What have I been doing for the last three years? In a way, I feel like I haven't moved, changed, grown. Can this be right? It's probably the eternal lack of sleep.

I feel the same way about Pic...that she's the same now as she was when we brought her home, a bundle of screams in her carseat, an enigma for our wary cat, on a snowy day. I have to look at her pictures to remind myself that she is different. (I *know* that she's grown, but it seems to easy to forget that she hasn't always been this personita, this size, with this level of awareness and intelligence and crankiness.) I look at the pictures we had taken a year ago, she clad in a mismatched outfit we let her pick out, topped with a green bandana, and I think, 'that's exactly how she looks now. She's no different now than she was twelve months ago.' Poke's mom recently told me that before I know it, Pic will be getting married and I'll still be imagining her as a tiny miss ('Hold on to mommy's pocket,' Poke's mom reminisced). I don't imagine the wedding (will she marry when she's grown?), but I do imagine me still thinking of her as 'my baby, my love, my baby love,' as I often refer to her, when she's twenty, thirty, sixty.

On Sunday we're having new pictures taken. I'll bring them home and compare them to last year's and this will be the 'proof' I need to admit that she's different (but not completely).

Three? Do I still get to refer to her as my 'baby'? Sometimes, like now when I'm running on about twelve hours of sleep spread out over the last three days, I feel a desperate need to hold onto this time that wants to slip by so quickly.

The other day, my dad told me that I am a good mamma. Sometimes I feel like I let so many other things get in the way of living up to this. 'I have to read this for school.' 'I have to prepare for my students.' 'I have to rearrange the books into categories.' Sometimes, quite often actually, I feel like I'm rushing her around. 'We have to hurry if we want to get to the library to see Ms. J.' 'We need to hurry and get you to school to play with your friends.' I have a constant, sometimes silent, conversation with myself that I need to slow down, focus on now and just freaking breathe. I'm working on it. We go to the library. We walk to the park down the street and slip around on the ice under the swings and at the bottom of the slide. We read books (hers and mine), even if I have to read horribly saccharine and mind-numbing Disney princess books along with _The Piggy in the Puddle_ and _Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day_ (or any of the other 900 or so Pic's books we have). We watch _Lions_ (_Between the Lions_) and sing 'Grow, Mane, Grow'. Now, if only I could be here entirely and not always inwardly slightly, or not-so-slightly, freaking out about the dozens of cantos of _Faerie Queene_ and _Orlando Furioso_ I have to read before class. As I said, I'm working on it. It's a lifelong project, I believe.


A special Happy Happy Happy Birthday to Indie. Pic was due on her birthday but held out for VDay.

Friday, February 12, 2010

we are the world, an artifact

This earlier version is, of course, what I grew up with.

I just wanted to post them both here. I find it interesting that the new version is bashed and bashed some more, with commenters focusing on the singers and how it resembles the original and differs from it. I'm afraid that the purpose of the revision will be overlooked. A lot of the comments I read speak to how much the new version "sucks," but I like to think the artists' hearts are in the right place. Also, perhaps this renewed focus on the song will keep awareness for both famine and for the people affected by the earthquake in Haiti in the forefront of many people's minds.

Once again, I'm sending out my hopes for peace and healing -- this time keeping both focuses in mind.


Edited to add: I had to go look up USA for Africa to see that the original song was intended to bring attention to and raise money for famine in Africa. I had the purpose wrong.

This is from the website:

Our mission: To take action that will help demonstrate the importance and power of individual participation and collective action in helping to solve the problems, address issues and challenges that presently confront our global society.

Hunger still exists, our climate is challenged, conflicts rage around the world. The need for people to care and act still exists, perhaps more urgently than ever before. We honor our past and those who led our early efforts, those who made our initial efforts so impactful, and salute those dedicated visionaries and volunteers who are spearheading our efforts today. Past is prologue to the future and our future world will only be as good as we enable it to be.

Also, so many commenters are also complaining that "God" was taken out of the newer version of the song. Am I now just hearing things, or is there still talk of capital-G God? I know some of the God-referencing lyrics were removed, but not all. The song still argues that "we are all a part of God's great big family." I think there are some later lyrics referencing God also. Hmm. I'm wondering if some of the people who proclaim to hate the song have yet to listen to the song?

tempting fate

Okay, so I'm probably the last person to hear about the Titanic Memorial Cruise, but just in case I'm not, well, here's to tempting fate.

I really wish this voyage, the passengers and the crew and all, the very best, but I really don't think it's a great idea.

What do you all think?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

interstate travelers

We've been away for a few days. Pic is turning five in just three days (oh my!) and we surprised her with a trip. Actually, Cardo kind of surprised both Pic and me: he had gotten a bonus at work and didn't share this information with me until the morning we left. "I don't want you to worry about how we're going to pay for this," he told me. Yes, he definitely knows me, because I hadn't stopped worried about it since we began talking about the trip.

Pic was surprised and she let us know several times after our time in California that she was very happy and she loved her surprise. We went to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Pic's at a great age for visiting and enjoying the children's exhibits there. The next day, we visited My Museum, a children's museum I hadn't known was there until I saw it in the guide in the hotel. I think next time we go to Monterey (it's one of the very few places we visit), we'll go to My Museum and go hiking (easy hiking...the kind that's like "Hey, this is a nice walk outdoors."). The museum was awesomely fun and it makes me wish that our nearest children's museum wasn't in Carson. I love to visit the aquarium, but, well, it's pricey.

We didn't get many images from the aquarium, at least not many clear images.

This was a somewhat hilarious exhibit. There was a farm area with a kind of industrial works on the wall. You feed the colored balls into it and turn the crank. The balls eventually travel through a tube and into the cage above the stationary tractor below. The tractor "driver" pulls the cord and then the balls all dump out on her or his head.

I love that the actual fire extinguisher is right next to the firefighter exhibit.

There's a whole area for crafting. These are our creations. (The card was already illustrated, I just added some ribbon and wrapping paper.) Cardo and Pic made the lady, whose name I can't remember.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

need, or... wouldn't be an inconvenience to have?

So often, I see articles or ads that claim we need certain products and these ads really get to me. (I'm talking explicitly stating we "need" these items. I get that through advertising companies are claiming we need whatever product or service. I'm being really specific here.)

The other day, I glimpsed an article that proclaimed items that we "need" in a new home. I also recently saw this, listing baby items parents of newborns "need." I'm not here criticizing the products or anyone's love for such products. I do, however, take issue with the term "need." I didn't have a paci purse, a fancy changing mat or reversible bibs when Pic was a wee one. I think all of these items are cute and I surely wouldn't object if someone gifted one of these items to me, but I certainly don't believe that a parent of a newborn actually needs any of these items. We kept Pic's pacis in little tupperware containers. Or, if they were in the bottom of the diaper bag, covered in lint, we'd rinse them off (or pop them into our mouths to clean them off!...Quick, revoke our Parent badges, I know, but she survived that). Our diaper bag came with a changing pad. Done. We rarely used bibs, but when we did, we used cheap ones. They weren't reversible and they definitely weren't as cute as the one in the link, but they were serviceable. A tea towel is also serviceable.

I feel caught in this weird place, where I want to be a person who only buys what she truly needs, but, I have to admit, I'll never be that person. I try to not buy too much, but somehow I still do. I often tell Cardo, "Yeah, I like it, but I don't really need it," which invariably makes him just a bit irked, but I'm so easily tempted. Cardo wants me to just buy something without way overthinking it, but I can't.

I like stuff, though. My home is (over)filled with stuff. Just today, I bought more stuff -- a magazine for myself and a book for Pic -- and while I enjoyed reading my magazine and Pic enjoyed reading her book, we certainly didn't need these items.

And, every time I see or hear the merits of some "needed" item extolled, I think of so many other people in this world who have incredibly less than I do and I can't help but scoff a bit. Even while I'm thinking, "I wonder if there'll be a Savers' sale on President's Day?"

What to do? We donate our stuff to Goodwill or Planned Parenthood when we're finished with it, but if we didn't buy it in the first place, we wouldn't have to clear it out.

Again, what to do?

ww: self-portrait, pic edition

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

st valentine's day

Or something. Along with the totally cheesy ads for jewelry and flowers, I've seen some more interesting ads for Valentine's Day gifts. Two such ads are the following:

-- a billboard ad for making a date to be vaccinated against H1N1.

-- a local paper ad for giving the gift of a Brazilian wax. (And painkillers? I didn't see that included.)

We don't exchange Valentine's Day gifts, made much easier because it also happens to be Pic's birthday, but I definitely wouldn't want either of the above.


On a different note: It's Indie's birthday! Happy, happy day, Indie! I miss you and can't wait for you to one day be in the same half of the country again.

Monday, February 8, 2010

monday music: theme song

I sang this on constant repeat when I first moved up to this biggest of little cities. It's a good nostalgic song for me. I have to say, though, that at first I sang this song sardonically. For whatever reason, I eventually gave it a positive connotation.

"Petula Clark - Downtown"

tale in domesticity

Today, I got off to a late start in doing anything productive (but, not reproductive, mind you...that didn't happen at all). We picked up some (MORE!) used bookcases to house many, many more of Pic's books. One of our bookcases didn't make it through the move. It was the first one Cardo and I bought together. Ah.

When we got home, it was time for Cardo to watch football (GO SAINTS!*) and for me to putter around in the kitchen. (My grammie used to say "putter" and the term always makes me think of her.) I had many ambitions, but half weren't realized. Next week?

This is what did get accomplished (along with dishes and laundry and sweeping and bathing the babe and...):

I recently bought those mason jars. It's been a while since we've owned any (other than the jars left over from pasta sauces, which explains that big jar in the front), but I feel that I might actually use them, hence the purchase. I also used my crock pot. Well, I used it last night and ended up with weirdly dark brown oatmeal that smelled like burnt cookies? toast? I don't know.

The yellow soup is Catherine Newman's corn chowder. We made a different batch about a week ago. I really wanted to use up the rest of the ingredients and this soup is even better after the flavors have a chance to meld for at least a day. The red soup is Coach J's recipe (minus the water because my crock pot is small enough that there wasn't room for water). She left the recipe in a comment to this post of mine. Thanks! I look forward to eating this soon.

I can't wait to get back in my kitchen and make some bread to go with these soups. Mmm.


*My dad has been a Saints fan for at least as long as my memory serves. I'm not into football, but I was definitely rooting for them...even though I watched the game not at all. GO SAINTS!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

from the mouth of the babe

"When I be five, is my uterus going to be bigger?"

Saturday, February 6, 2010

oh, the cheese, it floweth over

"Jamaica Ska"

Peecho and I used to watch this movie all of the time. Yeah.

Just felt in this kind of a mood tonight. :)

Friday, February 5, 2010

the sun was calling

I've been somewhat under the weather for the past week or so. It's the first time I've been (physically) sick in quite some time. By yesterday evening, I was pretty well shut of it. I slept a truly ridiculous amount of hours. I really needed the sleep and I rarely allow myself even just enough sleep.

Today, after I came to pick up Cardo and Pic, we stopped for lunch and then went for a walk. Well, Cardo and I walked as Pic practiced her bike riding skills. She showed us how she can ride with no hands, which made her Papi nervous. She showed us that she could ride while basically standing. She rode for a good long while, with a stop to play at the park halfway through.

All was going very well until we were nearing our return to the car. There was an unusual amount of school kids out on the street. We encountered a group of boys running down the sidewalk toward us. (Pic is doing really well, but she's still in the learning phase, so we allow her to ride on the sidewalk.) Cardo, Pic and I realized there was going to be a collision and Cardo and I yelled out, but one of the kids ran head-on into Pic. She fell off her bike, which has training wheels so it isn't that unstable, but I managed to make sure she wasn't trampled. Cardo, Pic and I were all started and Pic's lip has a small split in it. She was crying, mainly because she'd just had the crap scared out of her, I think. Cardo yelled out at the kid who, with the rest of the group, continued to run off. He didn't even stop. I know Cardo wanted to grab him and, at the very least, shake some sense into him. He didn't. He did yell again once more, though, which didn't have any effect. We calmed Pic down and walked the last couple of house-length's back to our car.

It turns out that there was a fight at the park. Just after Pic was knocked off her bike, a couple of police cars drove over to the park and the officers got out and started checking for the aftermath. We heard one other passing kid state, "She really f*d her up." What gets me is how bored she sounded. No, that and the fact that she was walking away. I wonder what she meant by that? Was there another kid laying on the ground behind the park bathrooms, bloodied and sobbing?

We're sending Pic off to kindergarten in just over six months and things like this make me nervous. Well, things like everything make me nervous. I worry. I always have and I always will, and I accept that about myself. I don't want Pic to be beaten up. I don't want her to instigate fights and beat anyone else up. I don't want her to revel in someone else being punched and kicked. I know I can't put her in a bubble, but, really, sometimes it sounds almost appealing.

Anyhow, I didn't mean to dwell so long on the negative here. Sorry. I'm really, giddily glad that we got outside today. It doesn't feel at all winterish today and I'm sure that at some point we'll be blanketed with snow again, so I relish getting out in just a light jacket and soaking up the sunshine when we can.

"Sunshine Day" [It was stuck in my head. Sorry.]

Thursday, February 4, 2010

just for fun...

...middle of the night sessions of listening to old podcasts of Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!

I know that at some point, I'm going to wake Cardo up and he's going to ask me what is wrong with me as I burst into laughter every few minutes. I'm not sure if the show's even funnier because it's the middle of the night. Possibly.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

on comments...musings

I read a couple of blogs that everyone else in the whole wide blogosphere also reads. (Yes, I'm exaggerating here. That's what I do.) I enjoy these blogs, hence my reading them, but does it make a difference if I comment or not? I'm not adding profound insights to the conversation, especially because by the time I comment a hundred-plus other people have already commented, but sometimes I want to leave a comment anyhow.

What do you all think? To comment or not to comment? (To paraphrase a phrase that has been manipulated by a ridiculous amount of people or not to...yeah, you get it.)

Also on comments, here's this:

"Yo Comments Are Wack!" [You probably want to watch this on your own if very young kids are around.]

I came across this through a Grammar Girl podcast. Also, see their disclaimer, especially if you are thirteen or have epilepsy (especially if you are a porcupine has epilepsy).

oh happy day!

Happy Groundhog Day!

This has always seemed like a silly holiday to me. Of course there are going to be six more weeks of winter. That's the way the seasons work. Thinking about it now, though, I can't really believe we've made it through half of winter already. I've been trying not to wish away the season. I love being able to get outside for extended periods of time for picnics, playing at the park and walking, but we've been making a point of getting out a lot this winter. We all experienced sledding for the first time. We're planning on ice skating sometime in the very near future. We've made snow people and snow ducks and snow faeries. And, of course, there's been walking whenever possible, even if the walks are limited to no more than fifteen or twenty minutes. Even when we have to layer on a significant amount of clothing and Pic remarks, "I'm all puffy, like a bear."

Anyhow, here's to the next six weeks of winter.

(Why don't all season have a half-way point holiday? Hmm.)

Monday, February 1, 2010

monday music

"The London Symphony Orchestra Paint It Black" [No video, so feel free to listen as you browse elsewhere. I'm not sure why I feel the need to tell others what to feel free to do, but I just did it.]