Friday, November 16, 2012
Where do all these socks go when I really need them?
It’s been a while since I did a “day in the life” post, so here you go. My morning yesterday began with Vivi finally opening the antique crystal door handle to her bedroom by herself, rather than the usual Three Stooges-esque routine of standing at the door maniacally turning the handle in every direction and shouting for me to open it. I had not realized how much an improvement her quiet exit from the room would be, but Reader, it has added considerable joy to my start-of-day quality of life.
Thursday, May 17, 2012
|“Does Daddy have a bajingo or a wee wee?”|
Find out how I answer that question* and others posed by my inquisitive four-year-old on my guest post over at Natural Parents Network. If you like and can identify with the post, feel free to pass it along!
*In the spirit of full disclosure, I’ve never actually been asked that question, but I thought the prospect of it was funny, given the questions she has been asking me lately.at6:31 PM2 comments: Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to FacebookShare to PinterestLabels:Kids,Parenting,TMI
Friday, March 02, 2012
Do you live in a world where discussions of poop are a good day? I’ve been waiting to start Charlie on potty training, but if I’m honest with myself, I couldn’t really say why. She has been talking about the whole general concept for a few months now. “Pee pee!” is announced every time one of us goes to the bathroom, and she even says “Uh oh, poop” and runs to stand in the vicinity of the potty when she’s about to go. Yeah, it probably doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure she’s ready.
Thursday, March 01, 2012
I find it challenging to be candid, even with close friends and family, in ways that may make me appear vulnerable. Yesterday I had a nice convo with my friend Emily about many topics; one of my favorites was our frank and honest discussion about how difficult parenting can be. Does it seem like a taboo subject to you? What do you think are the reasons for our struggle to admit the hardships of parenthood? Is it a part of our cultural folkways or mores? Sociology majors, help me out.
Thursday, February 09, 2012
I have a confession to make. Okay, so it’s not a biggie confession, but sometimes it’s nice just to get the feelings out there on the table, knowwhatimeanvern? I used to be so paranoid about what I said on the blog, as though the comments I made about running around bra-less would one day be used against me in a job interview or during a bank loan meeting. Or maybe there’d be this stalker who would just love to know all about my trips to the farmer’s market. It was a thing, my worrying. Probably silly, but there you have it.
Saturday, January 14, 2012
I am not a fan of diets. Starting a post this way reminds me of the time I was a tween (before we were called such), and the girls were gabbing away while changing into swimsuits in our cabin at summer camp. They were all chatting about how fat they were–oh how sad, looking back!–and I chimed in, “Oh I know. I’m sooo fat.” I resembled a walking stick bug at the time, only more bow-legged. Even my hair was skinny. One of the other girls gave me a withering glance and taunted, “YOU are NOT fat,” then spun on her heel and continued to moan about how fat she was. I had never felt less a part of the in-crowd.
Fast forward to the present day, and I am still mostly excluded from diet talk, only now it is by design. My “diet” is a consistent path I have continued–since as a child in my mother’s home–of eating whole, real food, local when possible (okay, the local thing is recent), and little to no junk or fast food. I pride myself on not needing cleanses or other fads to get back on the wagon.
Read more »at8:00 AM4 comments: Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to FacebookShare to PinterestLabels:Food,Health,TMI
Monday, January 09, 2012
Have I told you about my hair? Probably not; I try not to talk much about it. However, I am buoyed by other ladies with more eloquent, confident writing than my own (read: Suburban Matron’s discussions of her own post-chemotherapy hair loss), and so I’ve decided to let you in. I have rarely found anyone discussing the topic of female hair loss on the web, so perhaps I can be helpful.
My hair is falling out, like, a LOT. I don’t have cancer or anything, so not to worry. It’s happened before, although both of the previous times took place from exactly three to six months after giving birth, when there are several potential reasons for the loss of hair. In fact, even excessive postpartum hair loss is a normal condition, for 40-50% of women, called Telogen effluvium. The great news is that the hair grows back.
Read more »at8:00 AM16 comments: Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to FacebookShare to PinterestLabels:Babies,Frugal Living Challenge,Health,Pregnancy,TMI
Friday, December 16, 2011
You know how sometimes an experience has to marinate a while before you want to pick it apart? Nate’s holiday party was a week ago, so we got all dolled up and took on the town. I wore “the dress,” which I bought–along with its matching clutch and heels–six years ago while working at Ann Taylor Loft. “The dress” has been my uniform for most weddings and cocktail parties since then. I plan to continue to don it until it falls apart or goes on strike. See here:
Although my inner frugality nearly always wins the debate of whether to purchase a new evening wardrobe, I secretly still rock and moan in the pre-party hours, worrying I’ll stand out in some wrong way that my fashion-challenged sense won’t pick up on. What to do during the fretting hours? Make chili!
I’ve been wanting to try out an Emeril chili recipe, and his turkey and hot sausage chili was wonderfully simple, hearty and satisfying. A great way to use up our hot Italian sausage from our CSA, I might add.
I finally made a jar of Emeril’s Essence, which is so big it will now likely follow us in our next six moves. Who knows? Maybe I’ll spice up our standard beans and rice with it. Seems like a useful spice mix to have on hand. But never fear, Tony Chachere’s, you will always have a place in the seasoning of my heart.
So yeah, when I should have been curling my hair or doing some other prettifying pre-party ritual, I made chili. And then, when I should have been putting on make-up or jewelry, I ate some chili. Because when lipstick isn’t enough, an orange stain around your mouth adds that little extra something.
To save money and the potential leeching of BPA in canned beans, I cooked my own beans from a bag of dried ones. I only recommend doing that if you’re cooking on the weekend or if you’re a home ranger like me. They take forever and are kind of a pain. Of course, of course, I had to say “BAM!” when pouring in the Essence. I wholeheartedly recommend this delicious chili. As for eating it prior to a night on the town, that could probably be avoided to everyone’s liking, particularly your girlish figure.
Update (2-13-12): I made a quick chili tonight with no recipe to follow, just using up leftovers from my fridge, and it turned out great! Nate said it was the best he ever had, so I decided to share it below my adaptation of Emeril.
Emeril’s turkey and hot sausage chili
1 Tbs. oil
1 pound ground turkey
3 hot Italian sausages, removed from casings and crumbled
2 tsp. Essence (BAM!), recipe follows
1 1/2 c. onions, diced
1/2 c. chopped, roasted and peeled green poblano or Anaheim chiles
2 Tbs. minced garlic
2 Tbs. Mexican chili powder (I like this kind because of the oregano)
1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. salt
1 (12-oz.) beer
1 (28-oz.) can petite diced tomatoes with their juice
2 c. cooked small red beans, or canned beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 c. chopped fresh cilantro
Corn muffins, accompaniment
To roast the poblano chile, broil it in your toaster oven for 8-10 minutes on each side until it is sufficiently charred. Let it cool and then peel off the skin. (A more step-by-step version with jazzy photos can be found on the Inspired Bites blog).
In a Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the turkey, sausage and Essence, and cook, stirring, until the meat is no longer pink, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the onions and chilies and cook, stirring, until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, and salt, and cook for 1 minute. Add the beans, beer, and tomatoes, stir well, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer uncovered for 45 minutes to 1 hour, stirring occasionally to prevent the chili from sticking to the bottom of the pot.
Remove from the heat and season to taste. At serving time, sprinkle each bowl with 1/4 cup of cheese and a pinch of cilantro. Serve corn muffins on the side.
yield: 2/3 cup
2 1/2 Tbs. paprika
2 Tbs. salt
2 Tbs. garlic powder
1 Tbs. black pepper
1 Tbs. onion powder
1 Tbs. cayenne pepper
1 Tbs. dried oregano
1 Tbs. dried thyme
Combine all ingredients thoroughly.
Justine’s “leftovers chili”
serves 2 with leftovers
2 c. dried small red beans
1 tsp. bacon fat*
handful of chopped celery heart
1 small onion, diced
1/3 c. leftover cooked and chopped bacon
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 Tbs. Essence
1 Tbs. Mexican chili powder
1 1/2 c. leftover cooked sausage, ground pork, or beef
1 c. diced tomatoes in juice
Rinse and pick over beans. Put in a Dutch oven and cover with 8 c. water. Boil for two minutes, remove from heat, and let sit for 1 hour. Drain, rinse, and set aside. Add bacon fat, onion, celery, salt, and pepper, and saute over medium heat until translucent, about five minutes. Add bacon, 4 c. water, beans, Essence, and chili powder, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and cook over low heat for 1 1/2 hours. Add sausage and tomatoes and cook another 30-45 minutes, removing cover for the last 15 minutes.
*I use leftovers throughout this recipe, but you can always use fresh ingredients instead.
Sunday, September 18, 2011
Guess what I stepped on when I was cleaning the toys out of the tub tonight…
A) a wet washcloth
B) a wet diaper
C) a wet pizza crust
D) all of the above
Anyone guess D? Ding ding! Dare not ask how these items appeared on my bathroom floor tonight. Just pray for my sanity. Counting the minutes until my dearly beloved returns from his testosteroneathon tomorrow…at9:43 PM3 comments: Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to FacebookShare to PinterestLabels:Home ranging,TMI
Monday, August 22, 2011
Warning: we are about to enter the stage in our relationship disaffectionately known as “TMI.” You see, part of the vanity in writing a blog is that you begin to think everything that happens to you is blog-worthy. A hazard of the trade, you might say. Come to that, I often wonder if it’s not narcissistic even to start a blog in the first place. If I want to remember recipes or what my kid said, why not just keep a paper journal? (I do that too, by the way). I guess what it boils down to is that I’m not a good enough writer to come up with interesting ideas all the time, but I’m not composed and self-controlled enough to stop myself. It’s like I’m the unfunny Seinfeld. Help, I’m drowning in a sea of verbal diarrhea! TMI?
I mentioned to my beloved husband this idea that I might sometimes blog about mundane topics, and he raised his eyebrows and said “Yeah” with a little too much emphasis. Hmmm, point taken. One of the reasons I keep him around, actually, is that he’s not afraid to tell me when I’m being boring or if I have spinach in my teeth. Buddies are good about letting me know too, like when I ask who’s seen Winnie the Pooh and hear that it’s “a sad day when you’re looking for Pooh reviews.” Sigh, true that.
In the spirit of TMI, allow me to share some potential blog posts that in a moment of clarity and good editing got cut from the ranks:
- I love the spray thingy on the sink
- Why does nasty goop end up everywhere when I roast a chicken?
- Is it just me, or do parents go through a s**t-ton of batteries?
- Me and my washing machine: it’s complicated
- Gross object on the floor is bigger than it appears
It isn’t just that I occasionally share disgusting or bland details better left to the annals of parenthood that gives me pause. In an attempt to fix the long-standing problems with the blog’s comments, I decided to make it searchable by engines, figuring that more public = less firewalls, spam blockers, etc. I am also tweeting the posts that I think might be interesting to others not in my fan base of five loyal readers and random drop-in Facebook friends. Publicizing my blog in this way brings up a long-running existential dilemma.
[Oh, that reminds me. I have to stop this post for a quick aimless digression in which I tell you that at one time years ago I considered calling my blog “existential dilemma,” only to discover the name had been taken by somebody already. Not just somebody, but someone with a personality freakishly like mine…shares recipes and random anecdotes, loves food, family, travel, etc. “I think, therefore I blog”? Also taken. I could go on. See there? Even in the blogosphere I’m unoriginal.]
Ok, back to my predicament. I have always been somewhat afraid of the Internet. It’s a love-hate thing. I love blogging and shopping online and social networking. But then when I am being introduced to the leader of a huge organization and move in to shake his hand, and he says “I saw online that you just bought your first house,” I start to wonder if it’s such a good idea to air my dirty laundry in public. As I’ve become more fond of other blogs, I’ve noticed a trend in which moms refer to their children by nicknames. In this era of over-sharing, perhaps that’s not such a bad idea. So if you start seeing “Peanut-isms,” you’ll know why. Less is more, right?at12:56 PM3 comments: Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to FacebookShare to PinterestLabels:Parenting,TMI Older PostsHomeSubscribe to:Posts (Atom)