Thursday, January 31, 2008

King Ranch Casserole - my take

3 TBS butter in a large pot on medium heat. Put into pot 2 to 3 TBS minced garlic, 1/2 C diced onions, 1 C diced bell peppers (or any pepper you want), 1 C chopped mushrooms. Season with a shake or four of cayanne pepper, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp dried oregano, and salt & pepper and cook until tender (10 min). Reduce heat and add in 2 cups milk, 1.5 C grated cheese, and 1/2 C sour cream. Stir until the cheese is melted. Dump in 2 to 3 cups diced COOKED fajita chicken (or smoked chicken) and stir. Dump in 6 medium seeded and diced tomatoes and stir in.
Take about 3/4 of a 13 oz bag of tortilla chips and crush them up (or an entire 9 oz bag). Take half of those chips and cover the bottom of a 13 x 9 baking dish. Pour half of the chicken and sauce mixture on top and spread it out evenly. Sprinkle some diced green onion of top of this layer if you want. Spread out the rest of the crushed chips on top of this then cover them with the rest of the chicken and sauce mixture. Bake, uncovered, for 30 min at 350 degrees F or until the middle is bubbly. Let it sit for 5 min before digging in with one of those cool scoop spatulas (I like to use my Pampered Chef one). This served 4 adults and 2 young kids with no leftovers - everyone had seconds - but I also served it with no side dishes. Had I had a side of mixed veggies there might have been 1 serving leftover.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


I was going to post the recipe for King Ranch Casserole but I'm tired so I'm going to call it a night early and join the kids in bed.

Today was:
Up too late again last night - had to watch the new episode of Torchwood on TiVo.
Tried to sleep in after that kids got up at 7:45.
Woken up by a crisis among kids at 8:45.
Wait for the kids to clean their messes up.
Went to pick up 2 pairs of boots from the shoe hospital that were done 2 weeks ago, neither pair were complete so I left them there.
Returns and new purchases at Garden Ridge.
Returns and new purchases at Target.
Returns and new purchases at Academy - I still don't have the right pump.
Bought 2007 Turbo Tax at Sam's.
Got 2 refills of the dog's Rx at the vet.
Watched the kids ride bikes in the court until dark for the 3rd day in a row.
Made dinner (mushroom ravioli & sauce for Giselle, cheese tortellini & sauce for Paul).
Checked eBay for Playmobil castles.
Put the kids to bed.
Posted to the blog.

Good Night!

calendar update

I got the free calendar from the Pennsylvania Lottery but each page is only 7.5 x 7.5 with each day's square barely 1"x1" so it's not good as a kitchen/house calendar or as a dinner menu calendar. I also got a free one from our local blood and tissue center (btw, I'm giving blood tomorrow because it's that time again) but it has NO spaces for writing on it - it's just a basic 3 months per page, what is today's date calendar. The one that I'm using in the kitchen currently (Christmas gift) hangs a bit too low so I can't see the last week of the month and that's not good.
So, I'm still waiting for new ones.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

For Joe


Monday, January 28, 2008

August Dinner Calendar

So, here is the calendar of what we ate for dinner in the month of August 2007. By the way, where are all of those calendars that I ordered back at the beginning of the month? At least SOME of them should have arrived by now!

1 - Ate out at Central Market Central - lasagna (bland) & fried eggplant (bland).
2 - Tamales from Tamaleo at the farmers market, home-made chocolate ice cream.
3 - Hot dogs, mixed veggies.
4 - Company over for dinner - Tamales from Tamaleo, mixed veggies.
5 - Company over for dinner - Shredded beef tacos, pipian squash.
6 - Dinner at Marie's - Tortelini w/ meatballs.
7 - Broiled tuna & salmon, pipian squash.
8 - Tater tot casserole (sliced bratwurst in the casserole).
9 - Leftover tater tot casserole.
10 - Hot dogs, mixed veggies.
11 - Hot dogs, mixed veggies.
12 - Ravioli w/ meatballs & sauce.
13 - Broiled salmon & tuna, mixed veggies.
14 - Hot dogs w/ canned chili & cheese & sour cream.
15 - Tamales.
16 - Dinner out - Paul & I at Taco Bell, Joe & Giselle at Trudy's Tex Mex.
17 - Baked ziti w/ eggplant and squash.
18 - Korv stroganoff, leftover ziti.
19 - Shredded beef tacos, leftover ziti.
20 - Broiled tuna & salmon, boiled shrimp, mixed veggies.
21 - Leftover korv stroganoff.
22 - Pizza - home prepared w/ olives and mushrooms.
23 - Asian noodle soup.
24 - Spaghetti w/ meatballs & sauce.
25 - Hot dogs, tortellini, mixed veggies.
26 - Tamales.
27 - Asian noodle soup.
28 - Eat out - Dynasty Buffet.
29 - Broiled tuna, boiled shrimp.
30 - Hot dogs w/ homemade chili (no more canned!) & cheese & sour cream.
31 - Hot dogs w/ chili & cheese & sour cream.

We need a new vacuum cleaner

We've had a Fantom Cyclone XT for the last 7 years. This expensive (at the time) vacuum cleaner was a MAJOR upgrade from the ANCIENT Royal that we were using previously. Oh it was gross, I had to vacuum 24 hours before I had company so that the stink would be gone before the company arrived. I mean it, after using that thing the house would smell like we owned 6 very dirty golden retrievers and we only have one occasionally smelly short haired dog. Joe has always had his complaints about the Fantom but I do the vacuuming 95% of the time so his opinion gets devalued for that reason. So, the Fantom is getting old / beat up / worn out and we are looking at getting a replacement. I don't want a canister style vacuum cleaner since we primarily have carpets and have limited storage space. I'm on the fence about going back to a bagged upright or not. The bags have really improved and they ARE easier to change than emptying the bagless dirt chamber (dust bomb) but I hate having to track down bags and make sure that we always have them in stock at the house. With as much dirt and dog hair and people hair that we've got around here I'm sure that I'll go through a bag every other vacuum and that adds up in $ for bags. Consumer Reports likes the Eureka Boss and two of the Kenmores but unfortunately for me this looks like something that I'm actually going to have to drive around and shop for. We want one that had a lower profile so that we can vacuum under beds and other furniture. I'd like one with a powered hand brush attachment. We'd like one with an easier to use hose extension.
So, what do you use? Do you like it? What would you get if you were buying new right now?

Baked Potato Soup

This was made from a HEB Ready, Fresh, Go! Baked Potato Soup Kit. It makes 6 cups of soup.

3 baked potatoes, cubed
1/4 cup cooked bacon, crumbled
1/3 cup chives
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup grated celery
1/4 cup grated onions
1 TBs minced garlic
5 TBs butter
2 cups milk
1 cup sour cream

Melt butter in a soup pot, cook celery, onions, garlic and bacon in the butter for 3 min. Add potatoes, stir and cook for 5 min. Reduce heat, add milk and sour cream, salt & pepper to taste and any other seasonings that you usually like on your baked potatoes but times 4. Cook for 5 min but don't let it boil. Mash the potatoes some if you want (I don't). Stir in the cheese until melted. Serve. If you want you could save some of the cheese, green onions & bacon to sprinkle on the top of the soup before serving.

If I ever make this again I'll do it as Loaded Mashed Potatoes not as a soup.

Crocs, eBay, Playmobil and Best Of The West

I just ordered Joe some new Crocs. These are the Specialist Vent Crocs. I got them from the official site. Shipping is $10.00 but the prices are a little less than you pay elsewhere.
Zappos is not cheap.
I don't like shopping, even on-line.
I do like watching eBay auctions. I watch a lot of auctions but I don't bid in very many. Joe keeps offering to let me use his snipe program but so far I've held off. I did do a manual snipe of my own today and won because of it. Sniping is when you come in at the last second and put in your high bid and the auction closes before anyone else can up their bid.
I got part of Giselle's birthday present - I'm trying to get all of the Playmobil Fairy Tale Castle sets and the Unicorn sets. She's rather bummed that all of the Playmobil stuff available in the stores are the boy-oriented items - pirates, knights, construction - and the girl ones are only available online. She really likes the retired Victorian mansion but I'm NOT going to pay $300 for it, even if it IS fully furnished and includes the extra level! I let myself get outbid on one today that sold for $76 but it was only the basic mansion and it was unfurnished to boot.
Where am I going to put all of this?
I got a Paul a Best Of The West Geronimo with a horse the other day but I haven't received it yet. Once I get another horse I'll give Giselle her Jane and Josie along with it. I got those for her before Christmas but she doesn't know about them, she just sees my Jane and the horse that I gave myself for Christmas sitting on our dresser and she keeps asking to play with them. I keep telling her that if she would hurry up and lose another tooth then she would get some of the good stuff that I've got hidden away for her.
Paul really likes his GI Joes (especially Duke, the one that talks) but I think that he's much more involved with his pirates and knights for the time being. He and Giselle play together with their Playmobil stuff for hours each day.

Would you look at the time! I've got to get to bed, OH and get back to work on the laundry before that! Finishing the laundry, vacuuming, dishes, school, shopping and ballet on Monday!

Sunday, January 27, 2008


The first Meatfest of 2008 has ended and it was a success. Only a thigh and a small breast were left, I haven't decided if the dog gets those tomorrow or not since she already ate the okra that was too spicy for the kids. The pork shoulder steak was INCREDIBLE! It was from the pig that Finca Pura Vida slaughtered back in April. The steak was striped with fat, not marbled, and boneless. We seasoned it with Lawry's Salt only and it was delicious only like pig meat can be! I could have eaten that whole 1.5 lb steak myself and that's quite a compliment coming from a former vegan. But I was nice and shared it with all the others. We used just Lawry's on the beef cutlets too, they were cube steak style, and Joe ate 2 of the 3 of those. The kids inhaled their dogs, ate some veggies, skipped the okra (too spicy) and had some pesto pasta; being sure to save room for the s'mores (Thomas came through on the Hershey's bars). Everyone had a s'more except for Mr. Atkins and then the smaller kids finished off the last few marshmallows just toasted.
I have to say that when Thomas opened the grill lid, the smell that came out of there while the meat was cooking was heavenly. I called the kids outside so that they could relish in the aroma of meat seasoned with Lawry's salt cooking over a mesquite charcoal fire. Wow!


Per Paul's request we are grilling for dinner tonight since it's 70 degrees outside right now.
The kids want hot dogs w/ buns. For the grown-ups (Thomas and Bobby will be joining us) I've got beef cutlets, pork shoulder steak and fajita chicken breasts and thighs. I'm sure that the kids will want some meat too so I'm cooking plenty. I just hope that it all thaws out in time - I really dislike trying to cook meat that is still a bit chilly in the middle. Hmm, what will be the sides? I've got plenty of okra in the freezer so maybe I'll stew up some of that with tomatoes. Maybe a small batch of spaghetti with pesto. And a 16 oz pkg of mixed peas, carrots, corn and green beans too.
It sounds like I've got loads of food, why don't you come on over and join us? If you do come, would you be so kind as to bring a bag of corn for me to add into the okra and tomatoes? I think that would add just the right crunch to the mix.

Friday, January 25, 2008

food update

The King Ranch Casserole turned out great - everyone had seconds!
We baked one batch of cookies last night after dinner and we ate them while I read 2 chapters of Little House. They were OK, nothing spectacular. The kids loved them 'cause they don't know any better. When we bake the rest we'll be sure to roll them in the cinnamon sugar first.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

too slow

I gave up waiting on the butter to defrost on its own so I nuked it - 1 minute per side at 10% power. After 5 min I now have the room temperature butter that we need. Joe will be happy to know that I actually used the microwave again.


I'm killing time while the butter thaws (yes, I keep my butter backstock in the freezer. You got a problem with that?) so that the kids and I can make some cookies. We'll be making snickerdoodles and pecan sandies but in shapes not circles. Hopefully we can get them made before dinner so that they can have them for dessert. I'm staying out of the cookies - even using 50/50 flour doesn't add enough fiber to cookies for me to justify eating them.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Fever and Little House

Giselle woke up this morning at 2 with a fever of 102. It hovered at that for most of the day but by 3 it had dropped to 100 and she was cleared to leave the bedroom. She got regular doses of 500 mg vitamin C, homeopathic Belladonna and Gelsemium, and the times that the fever got to 103 I gave her some Infant Tylenol Suspension Liquid. Although after talking to the nurse at the Pediatrician's office this afternoon, we will now use Junior Motrin Chewable Tablets instead (2 tablet dosage for Giselle). The nurse explained that it works quicker and lasts longer than Children's Tylenol. Joe picked the Motrin up along with some mango ice cream for her this afternoon when he went shopping with Thomas. Fortunately it's only a fever, nothing else.

So, to make good with our day stuck in bed we read the Little House book "These Happy Golden Years" but we alternated chapters of that with shorter books and stories that Paul picked out. That Little House book is so good. When Giselle went out to the living room at 3:30 to watch TV I stayed in the bedroom reading it. I want to go to the library and check out (and read) all of her other books.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Old Dan Tucker

Old Dan Tucker was a mighty man, washed his face in a frying pan.

Yep, it's another song off of the latest Biscuit Brothers' CD called Family Favorites (and boy is it ever!) that we play at full volume. It's thanks to these guys that Joe has to keep replacing the speakers in the mini-van.

Why don't you buy a copy for yourself?


Just wanted to say thanks to those 13 of you that have kept coming to check the blog for the last several days. Sorry that there's been nothing new posted here. I was off of the computer for brain decompression from Wednesday thru this afternoon.
Paul's been acting like a 4 year old and it's been an eventful few weeks. Giselle's been trying to expand her bossiness boundaries and keeps coming up against a big wall named Mommy. Paul has been expanding his vocabulary and his self-assertiveness and quite often around the house we hear "NO GISELLE, YOU CAN'T TELL ME WHAT TO DO!" He's been listening well during his anger management classes and has done a great job of keeping his volcanic explosions from destroying things about the house.

I promise to finish the post about the baked potato soup this next week. I think I'm making King Ranch Casserole for dinner tonight.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Baked Potato Soup

So yesterday while grocery shopping with the kids we sampled the

to be finished later

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Jessi's coming over!

One of Giselle's best friends is coming over this afternoon and she will be spending the night. It's Giselle's first time to have a friend spend the night. Since Thomas has moved out of the front bedroom, the girls will have their own room for giggling all night in. Because the office is in the playroom now, the playroom is not such a good sleep-over room anymore. We've re-rented The Jungle Book for us all to watch after dinner and I'm sure that the girls will be giggling until midnight!

Friday, January 11, 2008

The comida is all gone!

Paul turns 4 in a few days and at this point I think that it's safe to say out loud that he officially fully weaned on New Years Day. I haven't told HIM yet that he's weaned but the few times that he asked those first couple of nights of the new year I just reminded him that I've been empty every time that I've let him nurse for the last several weeks. And then I remind him again that I'm happy to love on him and hold him close to my heart but that he best keep his hands out of my shirt! Of course, this conversation happens at 2 in the morning which is the only time that he's been nursing for the last 3 or 4 months anyway. I haven't mentioned it to him in the daytime since he hasn't asked to nurse in the daytime in forever, so we haven't really had the 'You're weaned now and that means no more trying to drink comida.' conversation.
Giselle was fully weaned on New Years Eve also, although that was 2 years ago, but hers was a weaning that involved much talking and tears. She really didn't want it to end but Joe and I felt that 4 and 1/2 years was long enough.

Since I started writing this a few days ago, Paul and I have had 'the talk' and he's totally OK with all of it. Although at yesterday's La Leche League meeting he was trying to be very touchy with me.

So, it's all over now. I've spent the last 6 years and 7 months nursing, and for 2 of those years I was tandem nursing (so does that count as double time?). I've known that Paul would stop nursing at an earlier age than Giselle. Mainly because she had to wean when there was still plenty of milk while with Paul the supply has been dwindling down for the last 6 months. I'm actually surprised that we made it to the end of the year. I'm not upset since I've seen this coming for a while. And he was always a bit of a pesky nurser whereas Giselle was much more gentle in her persistence.

Another era ended, with many more just beginning.

mentally busy

not physically busy so I haven't posted in a while. I've got one in the works but the mental business is keeping me from finishing it.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008


I'll post tomorrow.
We made 4 cups of hand-squeezed orange juice today - it tasted very good.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Garden Ridge

I have to say that I'm not at all pleased with how Garden Ridge has remade itself. I used to be able to find anything there and now I can't.
They got rid of their whole arts & crafts section and filled it all in with fake potted plants. Now if I want any of that stuff I have to make an extra trip to Michael's. Their storage container section is greatly reduced now also to make way for 4 more rows of Bedding In A Bag. I'm NOT driving all the way to North Austin to get plastic boxes at The Container Store. Most of their cooking supplies are gone and I'm not going to Bed, Bath & Beyond because even with the 85 coupons that they send to me each month it's still too expensive there. Fortunately for them, what I needed this evening was bedding. They are down to only one side of a row of window treatments to make room for more pillows. Or maybe they just moved the pillows to make room for all that extra furniture that they sell now. Oh, it's just not the great store that it used to be. I don't see how carrying purses, shoes, clothes and luggage makes them a better Home Decor store.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Late night with Little House

Even though it was already 7:45, the kids convinced me to read a chapter of Little Town On The Prairie. That chapter was a long one and it was after 8 when I finished it. The kids were having fun playing with my hair while I was reading and I was enjoying it so I consented to another chapter. The chapter after that one was pretty short, only 5 pages front and back, so I read a third one. The NEXT chapter was only 4 pages front and back so I read a forth chapter. The fifth chapter was more than 8 pages long and it was already 8:45 so I finally closed the book after reading four chapters.
It was a really fun evening, especially since Paul was 'too tired' to finish eating his supper but he managed to stay awake for the whole reading. They really had fun with my hair and I love it when they play with it. We also have fun when I allow them to do makeup on me but we didn't do that tonight. I really enjoy reading to them and fortunately they do too.

Chitty Chitty Mary Poppins

So, did I mention that we watched Mary Poppins the other day? Well we did. And did I mention that we've watched Chitty Chitty Bang Bang about 4 times over the last 3 weeks (I know that's nothing for some of you video/DVD families out there but that's a lot for us)? Well, Step in Time from Mary Poppins is the EXACT same song as The Old Bamboo from Chitty Chitty. We spent a good 10 minutes yesterday doing the dance from the song/s. The dog kept trying to get kicked while we were dancing but we managed to not let it happen without falling down. I need to go to iTunes and get all the songs from Mary, Chitty and Sound of Music downloaded onto the computer so that we can all dance at will. Oh, and get us all some canes for dancing with.
I think that next rental session will include Bed Knobs and Broomsticks.

Well, I gotta slam out some breakfast, get some school done, do the grocery shopping and get school finished so that we can get over to Marie's after lunchtime.
We've got our 7 words for the week to write sentences for (Outside, Paid, Phone, Practice, Quit, Rain & Really), 6 pages (3 pages front and back) of Doring Kindersley 1st Grade Math Made Easy (we've only got 6 days of work left in the book), in our Evan-Moor Draw Then Write 1-3 we will be drawing a bunny today, in School Specialty Publishing Total Reading Grade 1 we'll be doing pages 175 thru 182, and there's a chance that we won't start Volume 2 of Story of The World today (that depends on if we eat lunch at home or not).

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Sunday activities

Sunday school has been cancelled until next week since all the teachers are on vacation so we didn't have church today. So instead, this morning we spent 2.5 hours at Krispy Kreme watching them make donuts. Paul said that he wants to do it every week. For the record, while we bought 1 dozen donuts (2 blueberry, 2 chocolate glazed, 2 lemon filled, 2 glazed cream filled, 2 chocolate covered cream filled, and 2 glazed covered with chocolate and green, red and white sprinkles) and got 3 freshly made glazed, we had 5 left when we left (we threw them out since we couldn't bring them home since Joe's on Atkins again).
Giselle got all of her clothes hung up in the closet and put away in the drawers. I took care of all of Paul's clothes last night before bed. Mine aren't done yet and today's laundry day again.
After taking care of her laundry, Giselle played at Grace's for 2 hours then at Jessi's for 1 while Paul helped me stuff the pinata and do the laundry. Paul, Joe and I played hide and seek for a bit while Giselle was gone.

Gotta go, I still have to do the dishes - I made Joe some poached salmon for dinner so the kitchen (whole house) smells like fish. I sprayed the house with that odor remover spray but until I actually clean that pan it's not really going to go away.

Saturday, January 05, 2008


This is the unlikely trio of teenaged spiders that got stuck in a bucket that was under the front porch light one spring evening.

One of the many damsel flies that I was tracking down at the creek this summer. The way that you can tell the difference between a damsel fly and a dragon fly is that when at rest, the dragon fly has it's wings out flat while the damsel fly has it's wings together. This was really tricky to photograph since I couldn't get my face near him so I had to hope that the camera would focus on his head and not the rest of him. This shot was as good as I could get. I would have loved to have a blowup-worthy shot of his head. Oh well, maybe next year.

Well, you can see what these damsel flies were doing, along with a few friends waiting in the wings.

Joe noticed this guy out under the front light during the summer. He was too cool to not photograph and he just stayed there for hours.

I saw this common household pest hanging around out on the church playground one Sunday this fall. I'd appreciate it if no one comments about the clothes combination of beige shirt, faded khaki shorts, olive socks and black desert boots.

This butterfly/moth/fritillary was enjoying the sprinkler on New Year's Eve along with the kids. It took a while but he finally got used to me getting close to him with the camera; so comfortable was he that he almost got himself stepped on by Paul (purely accidental).

Last pictures of 2007

These are some of the last pictures that I took in 2007

This big pot of mums sits at the end of the driveway so it gets the full brunt of any frosts that come along - that's why the leaves have turned purple. I think that the green/purple leaves are a wonderful compliment to the pink/purple flowers. The ISO was 64 on Super Macro, 9mm.

I know that some folks actually pay people money to come pick these out of their trees since they believe that they kill the tree. Actually they thrive on trees that are already in decline (just like mistletoe) so if you improve the tree's health then the parasitic plants are no worry at all. Whatever, the ball moss can be really cool looking if you let it get big and flower like this one is. It's about 12 feet up in our largest crape myrtle and I'd say that it's at least 8 inches across. Lots of kids use them to make fairy houses. The ISO was 100.

I'll post some insects in a few minutes.

New Year's Eve Bubbly - Frizzo

So this year for the toast at midnight I tried a new-to-me bubbly. It's a carbonated white wine from Germany called Frizzo and it cost a mere $6.99 at HEB. It was fairly sweet but it mixed well with the left over sparkling apple juice that I got for the kids (half and half). I'm finishing the last of that mix tonight, mixed half and half with the pomegranate juice (thank you spellcheck for that one) and it tastes really good as this final mix. The Frizzo came with a twist-on/off champagne top that was perfect for resealing the unfinished bottle. It was non-vintage but there is a small 04/07 printed on the label. I'd bring it to some one's house as a good summertime sparkling wine - I think it would be good with melon or pineapple.


We got out of the market early today - Finca Pura Vida had sold out of everything by noon and we had helped them pack up early too so they were gone by 12:30 and we were gone by 1 pm. We came home, tried to play with some friends (they weren't home) and proceeded to watch 3/4 of Alice in Wonderland (all the end was too damaged on the DVD so we couldn't watch anything after the introduction of the Queen of Hearts). We just finished watching Mary Poppins (what a FABULOUS movie) and now they are going to start on the Fraggle movie.

Yeah, it was a beautiful day today and we spent 5 hours out in it earlier. The silly thing about here is that there are so many nice days that when you get one you don't have that great of an urge to go out and take advantage of it since there will probably be another one tomorrow.

Yep, this is the forcast for the next 5 days:
Sunday: Areas of dense fog before 9am. Otherwise, partly sunny, with a high near 78. South wind between 10 and 20 mph.
Monday: A 20 percent chance of light rain. Cloudy, with a high near 79. South wind between 10 and 15 mph.
Tuesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 70. North northwest wind around 15 mph.
Wednesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 66. East wind around 10 mph becoming south.
Thursday: Partly sunny, with a high near 72.

I think that we've got some good kite flying weather for the next several days - about time to try out the kites that Joe got for the kids back around Halloween.

Friday, January 04, 2008

School is back in session

After a break that was WAY too long for my stress level we started school back up today. We did about 4/5 of a usual day and we may or may not make it to the park this afternoon. I want to try to get there but the kids want to stay home. Stay home instead of going to the park? Are they insane? No, they're just refusing to clean up their messes from earlier and we can't go to the park if the house isn't clean. And they really want to watch some of the DVDs that we got last night.
If I was a betting woman I would put money on us NOT getting to the park today. I would be happier if I lost that bet but I've been burned by this one before.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Hey Rechelle, Thanks for the wine!

Today's gripe session over at had a cathartic effect and later in the day I was totally up for going pinata shopping with the kids.

"Pinata shopping?" you say? With my fair city being this close to the border we have LOTS of pinata stores to pick a peck of pinatas at. For some silly reason, I think he was looking through that catalogue Birthday Express, Paul changed his mind last week to wanting a Star Wars pinata. Yeah, exactly, where the * am I going to find a Star Wars pinata without ordering it from that place? Well, we went to my favorite pinata store, Pinata Party Palace @ 1704 East Cesar Chavez St 236-0975, and lo and behold but what to my wondering eyes did appear? A miniature Darth Vader, all 3 feet of him. They had a larger version but there is no way that 9 kids need that much pinata. Let's see if I can remember some of the different pinatas that they had this time. Oh, they are all hand-made in Mexico and they are SUPER STURDY (you need a bat to break into these). There was: Diego, Dora, Mickey Mouse, Minni Mouse, Shrek, Mrs Shrek, a penguin, Cinderella, Barbie, wedding Barbie, Snow White, every Power Ranger, every Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, Batman, Spiderman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Pooh, Tigger, a rabbit, a kangaroo, a lion, a tiger, the standard stars and fruits and vegetables, a donkey, a bride, a groom, several different Care Bears, Strawberry Shortcake, a pirate, the Hulk, Nacho Libre, many versions of aliens, a bunch of old Easter ones, and even more that I can't remember. So I got some junk to put inside of him: snakes, frogs, dinosaurs, bouncy balls and one bag of candy (plus our leftover Halloween candy, shhh!) and some items for the gimme bags some orange spoons and black bowls and we were out of there fairly painlessly.

We made a not-so-quick trip to Toys-R-Us to check out the facilities (Holiday items are 50% off) and then ate dinner out. We FINALLY used up all of our gift certificates for Satalite Cafe (why does that always look like it's spelled wrong even when it's right?). After dinner we ran to the other end of the strip mall to Blockbuster to use some more gift certificates (I still have $8 left on a card from Christmas 2005). We rented the 40th anniversary edition of Jungle Book, Disney's Alice in Wonderland, the 40th anniversary edition of Mary Poppins, The Muppet Movie and Fraggle Rock Where It All Began. For me I rented Tim Burton's Corpse Bride; the movie in which Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter play a gruesome couple in love. Wait, isn't that the movie version of Sweeny Todd? Is that already on DVD? I thought that just opened last month. Oh, maybe this is the animated version. Is it my imagination or does Tim Burton just keep remaking the same movie over and over and over and over and over and over and over again? I know that Rechelle has an in with him since he keeps using Johnny Depp over and over again so I'm going to ask her about that the next time she has an open question session.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

2008 Resolutions

No, I'm not making two thousand and eight resolutions - that would take a whole year to come up with - I'm just making 3.

1 - Stop taking the easy way.
2 - Smile when angry.
3 - Eat appropriate-sized portions.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

bacon ends

Mmmm, just thinking about the bacon ends for tonight's black-eyed peas and rice is making my mouth water.

Giselle just go up. Paul got up at 10:30 or so.

down for the count

Paul is laying in his bean bag chair breathing deeply; I think that he has called it a night. Giselle just started watching the Christmas special that has the song "Put One Foot In Front Of The Other" in it. I think that after I post this that I'll have to tell her to shut it down for the night.

I unplugged the Christmas lights a few minutes ago - this was the last night for them until next December. I plan on taking them all down tomorrow. I've got to get moving on Paul's birthday party and I need to get all of the Christmas things out of my mind.