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Thawing out

Questions on my mind today:
1) Will the kids ever have school again?
2) Will Duncan ever stop being perplexed by snow and ice?
3) At what point do I have to stop eating potato chips and resume regular living?
4) How is it possible that we’ve been holed up for days and I’ve still accomplished absolutely nothing productive?

Truly, my mind is a deep philosophical well.

While we continue with storm clean-up, I have a great vegetarian stuffed pepper recipe over at Alpha Mom that even the resident carnivores love. I made it last weekend, before the storm hit, because once you’re iced in, you can’t be expected to cook anything more complicated than hot dogs. That’s the rule.

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Weekend update, citrus-scented for your enjoyment

I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned this, but my life is pretty exciting. Try not to be jealous.

On Friday I spent most of the day fruit-wrangling, because nothing says “marching band fundraiser” like a gazillion cases of fruit that need to be sorted and counted and loaded into people’s cars and such. I was killing a couple of birds with one stone, really, because Monkey and I both went in to help AND we had a couple of teacher meetings in preparation for his January start at Chickie’s school AND he got to hang out in the band room with some of the kids he’ll be in class with next semester, so it was all good, really.

It was just that after we did that, then we also had to spend the weekend delivering the fruit that Chickadee sold, along with everything else we were trying to get done this weekend. I love how the idea is that “the kids go out and fundraise,” but in reality—WEIRD!—cases of grapefruit are heavy and I can’t exactly just send her out with her little red wagon to go make deliveries. Especially because we do not have a little red wagon. (more…)

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Yeah, I have no idea where it comes from

You remember how surprised we were when Chickadee got her ADD diagnosis? All, “How in the world did THAT happen?” It’s a puzzle, truly. You could’ve knocked me over with the proverbial feather, at the time, and yet…

… yesterday I had a lot of work to get done and so of course by lunchtime I’d wandered into the kitchen and laid waste to about three pounds of butter. Huh.

But, uh, I was totally WORKING, see, because ’tis the season for baking, and I’ve got your holiday cookie recipes right here. I’m a giver. And that’s totally what I meant to do and was completely productive. Or something. Yes. Um. Can I offer you a cookie…?

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Happy post-Thanksgiving!

Black Friday is my day to get up wayyyyy too early and dish out the deals all day long over at Want Not. Just picture me in a long, flowing cape (I mean, I’m wearing my polka-dotted robe, and that’s practically the same thing…), bravely saving humanity from having to go out into the world to join the shopping madness, today. It’s a public service, really.

Our Thanksgiving was lovely. We had good friends, good food, and I was curious to see how Duncan would do with a houseful of people. As it was, we ate in the dining room while both dogs paced around the table, ever vigilant and hopeful. It was rather like being stalked by two small, furry sharks. Only more adorable and less terrifying.

While I’m busy shopping, you could head over to Alpha Mom to see what you should be doing with your Thanksgiving leftovers. I have an ulterior motive, really; I want some new recipes, and I suspect that will cause at least a few of you to offer up some goodies. Come lay it on me.

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Cook something yummy while I’m gone

There’s big doings afoot here today—maybe—well, it’s complicated, and I hope that tomorrow it will make a good story, but today I have to go do other things for a little bit. Plus I think it’s a D&D day, which means soon my house will be filled with nerdlings and dice and lots of words I don’t understand.

While I’m away, why not make your family a big pot of chili? I’m pretty sure I’ve linked to all of these recipes here before, but now you can go over to Alpha Mom and find all of my favorites in one handy spot, just in case you’re not sure what to have for dinner. We’re having Karen‘s turkey chili tonight, in fact. (Well, the meat-eaters are. Chickadee will have to find some leftover veggie chili in the freezer, or just whine loudly about how I clearly don’t love her. That’s always fun.)

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Sunrise, sunset, and the days in-between

This is where I tell you all of the fascinating things I’ve been doing lately which have kept me from writing here. If only I’d been leaping tall buildings in a single bound or rescuing kittens and babies from flaming buildings, or something.

In truth I find the days have been slipping away from me. Not in a bad way; after months of feeling like time was creeping by while I hated everyone and everything, I’m feeling better. Yay! And when I’m feeling better I cook and bake and volunteer at school and clean things and take the dog for walks. Good for living, not so interesting for writing, necessarily. (“We took the dog for a long sojourn. She seemed to enjoy pooping on the neighbor’s lawn, and then watching me carry a bag of her feces on our route.” POETRY!)

Today I tried a new cookie recipe and the cookies came out seriously ugly. But then my house filled up with teenagers and all of the cookies got eaten, and no one cared that they were ugly. Meanwhile I looked around and realized that some of these teenagers are mine and they’ll be leaving before I know it and then who will eat my ugly cookies? It’s enough to make a person want to write stories about carting around dog poop, instead.

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Making memories, scarring bystanders

So before I forget, allow me to direct you to my latest recipe over at Alpha Mom, the perfect option if you kind of secretly love old-fashioned chicken casserole type things but are 1) gluten-free, 2) a fan of spices other than salt, and 3) religiously opposed to recipes that involve canned soup. This one is our alternative to chicken pot pie, but it’s topped with (gluten-free) cornbread. If you’re not gluten-free, make the cornbread with regular flour; I don’t judge.

Also, have you ever noticed that sometimes you ask me questions, or say “hey, can we see a picture of that?” and I don’t answer or produce? It’s very rare that this is intentional. It’s a lot less “no, you can’t have that” and a lot more “sure, let me just… oh, cookies!” And sometimes it’s more that someone says something like, “Oh, what oil-controlling moisturizer do you use?” and I realize that I hate my oil-controlling moisturizer and don’t want to recommend it to anyone. Stuff like that.

But when I mention Otto taking pictures of something, y’all KNOW there’s photographic evidence. And despite the fact that he’s an awesome photographer, I am not the most photogenic person in the world all the time. (TRY TO CONCEAL YOUR SHOCK.) Most of the time, I don’t share pictures. But sometimes, I guess I must. (more…)

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“DUDE I AM, LIKE, SO DRUNK.” Here we have a sentence that I’m pretty sure I’ve never actually said in 40+ years of life, mostly because I can count the times when I’ve truly been inebriated on one hand with fingers left over. I don’t actually like being drunk. I like occasionally being a degree or two more cheerful than I can manage on my own, but thanks to being a relatively small person and infrequent imbiber, one drink is all that takes. Perfect.

I know no one wants to hear me continue to bitch and moan about The Tragedy Of Stupid Medication, but I have been off the supposed Wonder Drug (why yes, it made me wonder if my doctor was trying to kill me) for about a week and I STILL FEEL DRUNK. Perhaps if I enjoyed this feeling, was a heavier drinker, or was otherwise a little more risky in my proclivities, this wouldn’t be a problem. As it is, it’s a big freaking problem. I hate everyone and everything even more than normal and THAT is a feat in itself, I’m pretty sure. Also I need to drink a pot of coffee anytime I need to drive anywhere.

My doc picked a shiny new Wonder Drug to put me on, and I’m not going to lie—I haven’t even picked it up, yet. I’m afraid to take it. This may have been the worst medication experience I’ve ever had and it’s enough to make a person believe that roots and berries were good enough for our ancestors and so probably just drinking some hippie tea or something will be fine. (more…)

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Nightmare hangovers

I have never actually been an addict of any kind (uhhhh… eating all the chocolate in the house so that there’s not any chocolate in the house to tempt me doesn’t count on that score, right?), so this may be completely off base, but I think the process of going off this stupid medication that never actually worked for me has been a lot like withdrawal. (Maybe. I have no idea, like I said, but hey, I’m a squeaky-clean, middle-aged, middle-class woman who saw Trainspotting once. Or something.)

Basically, you know, I’m fine, and it’s no big deal. Except that while I was taking this med, I was exhausted all the time and had a lot of trouble sleeping. Now that I’ve been weaning down, I’m a lot less tired than I was (though still tired, because hey, WHY NOT), but when I sleep, good lord, I have the most vivid, disturbing dreams. I wake up every morning and from every nap in a cold sweat, trying to discern reality from nightmare, as some horrible scenario gradually fades from my consciousness.

This, of course, means that my doctor said “Go down in dosage this much for one week, then this much for another week, then decrease by half” or somesuch, and after the first few days of heightened technicolor dreamscapes I took the proposed weaning schedule and tossed it in favor of being off the meds in about half the time. (more…)

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Otto and I have a quaint little Monday morning routine, and it goes like this: My alarm goes off, and I commence slapping my clock in sleepy annoyance, and Otto says, “Why does Monday morning always come so EARLY?” I grunt in response, and thus our love carries us through another week.

Oh, wait. Actually it’s COFFEE that carries us through another week. That charming exchange we have every Monday morning is just that precious little reminder that when you truly love someone, you forgive them for trying to have a conversation with you before you’ve had your coffee. And then you pack a lunch for your beloved and you don’t spit in it or anything. Because TRUE LOVE.

I think the problem is that every week, we have this idea that the weekend is going to be relaxing, and then every weekend we think OOH! AAH! NO WORK! Now we can do OTHER STUFF! And then the “other stuff” ends up being just as tiring as work, and/or we stay up late, forgetting that we are old and require a lot of sleep.

Let me just grab another cup of coffee and tell you all about the weekend. (more…)

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