Saturday, June 27, 2009

First Fruits

I just had to do a garden update today because... LOOK WHAT I GOT!!!
I am always so excited by the first vegetables that I can actually pull out of the ground.

We are on the verge of having actual garden tomatoes! And will you look at the size of these pumpkin plants! My sunflowers are actually growing too. I am particularly proud of these because they were seedlings that were sent home from school with Lou Lou.

Ok so most of what you can see in this picture is weeds but hey there are less of them than there was last week. We spent a long time hoeing (no jokes now!) last week so there are considerably less than there could be by this point, and I can actually see which are the real deal and which are just the weeds in a picture now!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Random Friday (with an addition)

All of us were at Lowes the other day and I started chatting with one of the other customers in the lighting department. Which by the way is our favorite department to hang out in. Anyway, she noticed Lou flipping out in her wheelchair as usual, and asked what disability she had. I told her CP and Autism and she pointed out her son (who was sitting so quietly in the cart) and said he had CP too. We then proceeded to stand in the lighting section and talk for about the next 20 minutes. There is something about being able to talk to someone who knows what you are going through that just makes you open up. At least it does for me. Strangers can ask about her and I answer politely and move on but if it is someone who has a similar situation they suddenly become my best friend. It is one of the reasons that I started going to my Mother's of Autistics lunch group. I needed someone to understand not just sympathise.
I turned 35 yesterday, it sucks.

My friend Nancy posted this on my facebook page and I thought I would share it with all of you. Can you say "Holy 80's flashback Batman"!

I am sort of glad that we didn't turn on the TV much yesterday, I heard it was nothing but the life and times of Michael Jackson. OK so I know he had a lot of influence on the music world, and I know he used to be really cool. He turned into a freak, people! Really was this the kind of person we should be admiring? Did he really live the kind of life that we should emulate? Should it really get this kind of press coverage?
I'm just sayin....
I am starting a cooking class for the kids in my neighborhood. People think I am crazy for doing this.
Am I?
I think it sounds like fun. Plus it is a way to make a little spare money. In addition it is an opportunity for The Bug to get to know some of the other kids in the neighborhood, since she doesn't go to the same school as everyone else. If there is anyone out there that would like their kids to participate too just let me know. They don't have to live in our neighborhood, as long as you can get them here they are invited.
Thank heaven the rain has finally let up. If that went on too much longer I think I actually would have gone insane.
OK more insane!
S and I have a kind of unspoken deal. He always takes off work for my birthday. I always did it when I was working for his too. Birthdays have always been something we have celebrated together. It is something I have always really enjoyed about our relationship.

Here's the tunes...
1. Strip- Adam Ant
2. Oh! Darling- The Beetles
3. Suburbia- Pet Shop Boys
4. Calling You- Blue October
5. Take Me I'm Yours- Squeeze
6. Iris- Goo Goo Dolls
7. Inaction- We Are Scientists
8. Deadweight (Pilot mix)- Beck
9. Ocean Breathes Salty- Modest Mouse
10. Salute Your Solution- The Raconteurs

Bonus: Ain't No Rest for the Wicked- Cage the Elephant

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Monday, June 22, 2009

To my Dad

I have an amazing husband, I really do. He is kind and caring and very intelligent. Today however, since yesterday was fathers day, I want to talk about my Dad. I spent a lot of time as a kid trying to please my Dad. Not that he is demanding but I just knew as a kid that my older sister was "daddy's girl" and I was not. Let me just say my Dad did not play favorites, he loved all his kids, it is just that my sister was the first child and they had a special relationship that he and I did not have. I even pretended to like things he liked to make him like me more.
Things like liver and horehound candy.

Papa and The Bug

I know now as an adult that that was a stupid thing to do but who doesn't do stupid things as a kid. As I got older I realized that my Dad and I have one very important thing in common. We both have a very peculiar sense of humor. He got it from his father and I got it from him. I don't think that this is a trait that the rest of my siblings inherited. Not that they don't have a sense of humor but it isn't quite the same. My dad will tell the same corny jokes all the time. Like he tells people that he has "Dunlaps disease" when they look at him with concern and ask what that is he says
"My stomach dun-lapped over my belt".

My Dad making "bitter beer face"

He also has a wicked temper. I remember the arguments he and my Mom used to have when I was a kid. They both have very booming voices, and I swear they could shake the walls. When I got to be a teenager (over the age of 16 that is) I learned how cool my Dad is. He listened to the same kind of music that my friends and I did. Not in a vain attempt to be cool like some parents do, but because that is what his boss listened to at work and he had learned to really like it. How many parents did you know who listened to X96 and knew the names of all the bands on it?

Papa and Lou Lou (I do believe they were both asleep for a minute there).

When S met my Dad for the first time they hit it off right away. My Dad really liked him because of a little "oops" that S pulled when he called my Dad bald and greasy the first time they met.
They are a lot alike.
I married the person that was the most like my Dad. My Dad and I have a great relationship now and I think that is because he talks to me like an adult. I know a lot of parents who don't treat their grown up kids like adults because of the whole "I changed your diapers" syndrome, but my dad has treated me like an adult since I was old enough to understand what that really meant. I know this is kind of rambling and is probably more about me than my Dad but I hope it made sense anyway. I love and respect my Father and I know he loves and respects me.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Please view this

I am going to pass on the usual random fridayness so that I can make this post. Pleas watch this video and pass it on.

I sobbed all the way through this. This is my life.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

It has to be perfect... or else!

So I went grocery shopping today and bought a whole bunch of fresh fruit and veggies. I brought them all home and was putting them away, when I noticed how pretty all the colors looked together so I thought I would do my version of a still life.
(all digital of course)
The top one is the first one I took, then I started fiddling around with them and just couldn't stop.

I just can't help myself, it has to be symmetrical. The obsessive compulsive in me just came to life with a roar, and took over!
The problem is the uncooperative fruit!
They are not all shaped the same!
Not only that but they wouldn't fit into my fruit bowl the same way every time!
I think that is just down right rude!
(Sorry about the excessive exclamation marks!)

This was very distressing for me so I decided to put them away.
Yes this is what my fruit looks like "put away"...

do you find something funny about this?

By the way this is what my herb garden looks like...
I did not measure between them!

Does anyone else do this?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Garden update

OK so this one isn't my garden it belongs to my Sister-in-law and her family but I thought you all might want to know what it looks like to have a nicely tended garden, and what my competition is looking like.
(Theirs is right next to mine, its a little humiliating!)

Our pumpkins are doing spectacularly but can you see the damage done to them by the hail the other day?

We are finally starting to see some progress with our potatoes (bottom right) but I still haven't identified what it is that has voluntarily started growing next to them.
Who knows.

Look Tomatoes!

I just thought that these tomato blooms looked so cool snuggled in there.

I even have carrots coming up,

My SIL did green beans last year and she let us "borrow" some, they were so good that we thought we would try this year.
They look terrible compared to hers but, hey they are alive!

That is S up there in the top corner,
I thought him being there would give you a good idea of how large this thing really is.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Menu Monday

I bought The Bug a recipe book for Christmas this year. We started cooking classes last summer as something that she and I could do together to while away the time during the longest three months of the year. These went really well so I thought a recipe book full of yummy desserts would be a good thing for us to use this summer.
So far so good.
We made chocolate cupcakes last week and will be making chocolate mint cookies today. I have made several of the recipes myself and have found them to be pretty good. This is one that I made last night. The recipe book is called Sweet Eats, Mmmore Than Just Desserts by Rose Dunnington

Apple Spice Cake
4 eggs (separated)
1 stick butter softened
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup oil
2 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg (fresh ground is best!)
1/4 tsp ground cloves
4 or 5 tart apples peeled cored and diced (4 cups)
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup raisins

Separate eggs, and beat whites into a stiff meringue, set aside. In another bowl, cream butter and sugars, add oil, eggs, and vanilla and beat until smooth. Add flour baking powder, soda, salt and spices and beat until well blended. Fold in egg whites making sure everything is well blended. Fold in apples, nuts and raisins. Scrape batter into well greased bunt pan. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

I served this for dessert with some home made ice cream. Then I gave it to my kids for breakfast this morning. It was a lot like the texture of a sweet bread rather than a cake. We really liked it and I think next time I might try substituting some wheat flour to the mix and see if it is good. It was really moist and had a really good flavor because of the blend of spices. This is definitely something I will make again.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Friday Randomness

OK so I warn you now that I have very little randomness for the week.
My lack of randomness stems from the fact that I have done
absolutely nothing this week!
I can count on three fingers the times that I have actually left the house this week.
Not only that but I can tell you that each trip consisted of only 20 minutes each. I am experiencing my one special version of cabin fever! On top of the fact that I have gone absolutely nowhere all week I have been battling mountains of laundry while trying to adjust to the little people who seem to have invaded my home.
This has not been pleasant.
On a related note...
Those of you who read this from out of state
(especially those of you who are from or still live in the New York area)
may not understand my frustration with this, so let me explain.
I live for summer.
Not only has it been terribly delayed this year but now it seems as though someone feels that they have to make up for the lack of spring we did not get.
Like a do over.
It has rained ALL FREAKING WEEK, and it hasn't been that great smelling warm summer rain kind of stuff. The temperature has dropped down so far that it has actually been COLD. (Yes I am in fact yelling while writing this!)
I do not like rain.
I am trying to decide something so maybe those of you in the blogger world can help. There is a blogger luncheon on Saturday. I was going to go but everyone that I might actually know in person is not going. I don't just want to invite myself to something where I haven't actually met anyone. This sort of gives me that first day at a new school feeling. I thought that feeling was long since gone but I guess not. I really wanted to go so that I could put some names to faces
Anyone out there in blog land want to take pity on me and add me to your group?

Did that sound too desperate?
And now.... The tunes

1. Secret- Maroon 5
2. In My Arms- Snow Patrol
3. Can't Buy Me Love- The Beetles
4. One of Us- ABBA
5. Blue Savannah- Erasure
6. I Will Follow You Into the Dark- Death Cab for Cutie
7. Tangerine Speedo- Caviar
8. Fake Do-Gooders- The Eams Era
9. Someone to Love- Fountains of Wayne
10. Fire it Up- Modest Mouse

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Check this out...

Hey everyone Motherboard is giving away an Ipod... check it out!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


That's right folks she has finally arrived...

only two days into the summer break and she is rearing her ugly head....

Wow I am a crappy mom!

Yelling at my kids after they let me sleep in until almost

Yes that is right I am the

Wicked Witch of the West!

da da da da ta da da!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Menu Monday

People keep telling me that they want this recipe. It is what I make for Christmas to hand out to neighbors so it is definitely more of a winter recipe but here goes.

Cinnamon Caramels
1 can condensed milk
2 cups sugar
1 cup butter
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cup Karo syrup
1 tsp cinnamon oil
1 tsp red food paste

Mix first 5 ingredients in a heavy sauce pan. Cook until it reaches 232 degrees. Stir often or it will scorch! Add Flavor and color and pour into a buttered jelly roll pan. Cool and cut into strips and roll in wax paper or parchment.

I got this recipe from a neighbor of mine. Thanks Julie! She always makes hers licorice flavored, which you can also do by adding the same amount of anise flavoring instead of cinnamon. Oh and black food coloring paste. I decided to experiment one year and try cinnamon. Everyone loves them.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

6:22 AM

Yes that's right folks.
The first day after school gets out.
The first chance to actually sleep in.
My child wakes me up at 6:22 am to ask if she can watch TV.
I am so excited to have them out of school for three whole months!!!!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Randomness for friday, oh and some music too!

I happened to run across this the other day and thought it was very applicable. I am having exactly the same problem. I am trying to deal with a vastly different medical problem but with the same results.
and my favorite
Let me just say that if this is what it is like to go through menopause then just kill me now. I cannot believe the extreme heat that just pops up out of nowhere. I am sitting there all comfortable and all of the sudden I am drenched in sweat, and I do mean drenched. Sorry for those of you who find this to be too much information,
but it is what I am dealing with right now.

So who is going to the air show? Yep for those of you who are out of the state of Utah or too far away to drive to it, you will be missing the Hill Air Force Base Air Show. We have a great situation here, we are situated right under the base. We will be sitting on our roof at about 4pm tomorrow to watch the Thunder birds! We caught a little pre-show this afternoon and it was pretty cool. So if you are in the neighborhood just pop by and join the fun!
We'll save you a popsicle.

My kids are officially out of school. So here goes the most dreaded three months of the year for me. I love summer but having them home does put a damper on things. I do love them I just get very used to having the house to myself. It is all nice and quiet for 9 months and then, my nice quiet life gets interrupted by phrases like...
"I'm bored!"
"Can I have a snack?"
"Can I go outside?"
"Can I watch TV?"
"Can't we go to the pool?"
"I don't have anyone to play with!"
"When are we going to do something?"
"Are you on your blog AGAIN!!!"
OK so that last one will be a new one seeing as though I didn't have a blog or a facebook account last summer, but I am sure that I will hear it at lest weekly, for the next three months.
I have discovered something. Years ago we purchased these funny objects. The have two giant wheels, a set of handles, some funny little pedals and even a set to sit on. Well a couple of weeks ago I pulled mine off of the wall of the garage where they have resided quite happily gathering dust. I discovered that if you put the wheels on the road and sit on the seat and push the pedals with your feet it makes you move forward! WOW what a discovery. I have been doing this particular activity for several times a week for a little while and to my amazement I really like it! I am up to about 9 miles a day now!
I have to say I feel much better doing it too!
Here's the tunes

1. Underneath- Alanis Morissette
2. Nothing Compares 2 U- Sinead O'Connor
3. One Thing- Finger Eleven
4. Into the Groove- Madonna
5. Spiralling- Keane
6. Don't Know Why- Nora Jones
7. Love is a Battlefield- Brooke White
8. Keep Me Close- Chris Daughtry
9. Head Over Heels- Tears For Fears
10. Feel Good Inc.- Gorillaz

Summer Lovin

I love summer.
I love it when it is hot enough outside to walk around at 9pm in shorts and a tee shirt.
I love it when you can leave your windows open at 3 am and it is too hot to sleep.
I love it when you go outside for a half an hour and you get a sunburn (well I do anyway).
I love not having to carry a huge coat around with me just in case I happen to step outside for 30 seconds.
I love it when I have to crank my air conditioner in order to be comfortable.
I love it when I can send my kids outside to entertain themselves on the trampoline or with the sprinkler.
I love short sleeves, shorts, and flip flops.
I love not having to wear shoes or socks to go get the mail.
I love not shoveling snow.
I love green grass.
I even love weeds, because if they are growing it means it is warm.
I love eating Popsicles, and ice cream outside.
I love the smell of sunscreen and tanning oil.
I love tan lines, and yes believe it or not, freckles!
I love hanging around with friends in the back yard so late that you forget you have to get up and turn on the lights.
I love the smell of back yard barbeque's.
I love crayons melted on hot cement.
I love laying on the hot cement to dry off after running through the sprinklers.
I love sidewalk chalk.
I love drive in movies with the windows down.
I love camping.
I love green leaves and growing things.
I love watermelon, and strawberries, and mangos, and tomatoes from the garden.
I especially love the smell of summer storms!!!

So tell me what do you love about summer?

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I must be crazy!

So I am not a gardener...
(not that that comes as a surprise to anyone out there)
until now that is.
When I was growing up gardening was the worse form of corporal punishment imaginable. I do believe that is the way my parents liked it too. You did something wrong, you had to go weed the garden. I am not sure that it didn't backfire on them though. The whining that went along with that particular chore would have been enough for me to just give in. They persisted though and every year we would have fresh produce to show for it.
I never had any interest in gardening until a couple of years ago. We had our little garden patch in the back yard of our former house, it was small and not well tended, mostly from lack of care, oh and lack of water. We tried grow boxes of a sort too but they never yielded very good results. For some reason they insisted on being watered ever day...
and ...
yeah, that didn't happen.
So last year my father-in-law got it into his mind that he wanted to plow up part of the "old family farm" and we could each have our own family plot.
Last year we divided up our plot and shared with our neighbor.
So we had a 20 x 50 space.
We did a few things, mostly tomatoes, and zucchini and radishes. They grew really well, even though we let the weeds get out of control. We were very bad at it, but the soil was so good that we didn't have to be very good at it to make things grow. This year our neighbor decided that there wasn't enough time for the giant garden, so the entire plot is ours.
Yes that's right...
we have a 40 x 50 foot plot for our garden.
My absolutely wonderful husband has decided that he wants to take a larger roll in this project this year too so he did a lot of the planting!
Color me surprised!
Let me just say last year things were a little different.
So this year we have...
green beans
So far things are going alright, we haven't killed anything yet but,
it is early for that,
Give us time!
I will be leaving periodic garden updates on here for those of you who want to see me fail miserably, I know how you love to have something to tease me about!

Tomatoes, we panted about 16 plants and about 5 different varieties.

Not sure what these are but they are popping up all over the garden, hopefully they are edible.
Do they look familiar to any of you?

Radishes, I hate them but S loves them so I do them for him.

Look at my cute little beans sprouting!!!

Yes this entire spot is all ours to do with as we please!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Menu Monday

I am sorry to all of you who actually read this blog on a regular basis,
things got really busy last week and...

I sort of forgot that I had a blog.

Here is the recipe for the week

White Pasta
1/2 lb bacon
2 stalks celery chopped
1 carrot shredded
1 onion minced
3 garlic cloves minced
1/4 tsp thyme (or 1 tsp fresh minced)
1/2 tsp rosemary (or 2 tsp fresh chopped)
2 bay leaves
1 can white beans (drained)
1/4 cup chicken stock
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
2 cups milk
1 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
8 oz bow tie pasta cooked

Cut bacon into small pieces and cook (drain off about half of the fat), add celery, onion garlic, cook for a few minutes. Add carrot, herbs and beans. Let cook until veggies are soft. Add chicken stock and cook until liquid is cooked out.
In another pan melt butter, whisk flour into butter and cook for about 30 seconds. Add milk and lower heat, cook until bubbly and thick, add Parmesan.
Add sauce to veggies and add cooked pasta.

So S doesn't like the beans in this so I leave them out because he is a
big baby.
This would also be really easy to make vegetarian style, just leave out the bacon and cook your veggies in olive oil.
Then add veggie stock instead of chicken.
I love how good this makes my kitchen smell.
Who doesn't love the smell of bacon cooking, then you add onions and garlic and it's heaven!

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