Sunday, October 30, 2011

More "string too short to use"

10) After about 16 months of no naps, Liam has fallen asleep in the afternoon three days this week. This scares me because it probably means a growth spurt soon. Day after tomorrow his shoes all of a sudden won’t go on his feet. Overnight his pants will become too short and half of the T-shirts in his dresser will no longer go over his head. Joy.

9) I love my sisters. That being said; I’ve always wanted a brother. I always thought it would be nice to have a big brother to stick up for me and help me out of jams. All of ya’all out there with brothers, be thankful for them.

8) “Being taken for granted can be a compliment. It means that you've become a comfortable, trusted element in another person's life.” - Dr Joyce Brothers. You know what, Dr Joyce, you can just kiss my ass. Being taken for granted is not a compliment. Being taken for granted means you’ve become invisible. All the things you do just happen and no one knows or cares why or how unless you stop doing them.

7) A friend of mine posted on facebook she needed a dress hemmed. Well, I can hem a dress so I told her to come on by. HA. It is a triple-layered wedding dress. The outer layer is chiffon and is about 17 miles around. The two under layers are slippery lining fabric and are each only about 8.5 miles around. Can I do it? Yes. Will it be a fun chore? No. However, it will be done on time and beautifully finished cause that’s how I roll.

6) I thought of something last night to add to this just as I was getting into bed. It is gone. I knew I should have come down here and written it right then. My brain is definitely not what it once was.

5) Our little boy loves to dance. In the past week I have been treated with the dance of the Mary Poppins penguins (They wiggle their butts you know.) and a little naked Cha-Cha-Cha in the living room. Hysterical. I definitely have to get some video of the penguin dance. The naked Cha-Cha-Cha would probably get me arrested.

4) The weather was pleasant yesterday, so we spent the bulk of the day outside and in the garage doing some fall clean up and harvesting herbs. I rebuilt a flower bed that our plum tree had almost pushed over this past year. We defrosted and reorganized the freezer so I would know what is there and can plan menus accordingly. CJE took the leaf-blower to the leaves which had accumulated on the deck. He also sprayed the weeds poking through the sidewalk. Liam rode his bicycle and demonstrated his four-year-old underfoot skills. All in all it was a glorious fall day.

3) When we came in from outside yesterday I took a look at my To-Do List for the day. Except for the freezer, none of what we did was on the list. How frustrating! I so enjoy the satisfaction of crossing off the things we have accomplished. I have even been known to write down things I have already done just so I can check them off. That being the case, I quickly wrote “make raspberry jam” on the list as I had decided after going through the freezer, a couple packages of raspberries in there were looking a little sad and needed to be used. So I made jam in the afternoon, cause it was on the list, you know. Come on, I gotta be able to check off something!

2) Sometimes a mom just needs a quiet moment. So here I am, it is Sunday morning and much as I know CJE would have liked me to come to church with him and Liam; I am taking my moment of peace. Oftentimes this is the only way/time I can get one. I miss going to church, but this time of quiet renewal counts for more. I’m sorry it is this way, but it is.

1) If you had to name the one personality trait that you have tried the hardest to change in yourself, what would you say?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

"String too short to use"

10) One of my on-again-off-again clients is on again. He got a nasty-gram from the Oregon Department of Revenue informing him he darned well better get his taxes filed for the last four years. His wife saw the letter and ‘bout had a panic attack. She doesn’t understand why ODR would care. “We don’t owe them any money,” she says to me. Well, Honey, you might not, but they have no way of knowing that. Plus they are likely to ding you like crazy in penalties simply for neglecting to file for the past four years. The bad side of this is I have been working 50+ hours a week trying to get them caught up. The good side is, our savings account will be nice and fat going into the holidays.

9) I am so very ready to put my lawn and gardens to bed. Yea fall!
8) I am thankful to have a few friends in my life who really get me. Friends who understand where I’m coming from even when my words don’t come out right are so rare and valuable. True kindred spirits are out there. When you find one, you don’t have to worry about losing them, they just become a part of your life forever.

7) Liam’s latest thing: Whenever we tell him he needs a bath he’ll say, “Smell me, Mom (or Dad).” Except that it comes out sounding like, “Sell me, Mom (or Dad).” And I can’t help but think each time he says it; we’ll never get any takers. We’d have to pay someone to take you, you little twirp.

6) My sister, Karen, recently posted online some pictures of my grandparents’ old place. Whoa. Talk about nostalgia. It is so funny, because they lived in the tiniest little house, and we used to all go there for Sunday dinners and holidays and the like. The main floor of their house couldn’t have been more than 1000 square feet (and probably less), but all their kids, kid-in-laws, grandkids and assorted friends would jam in there, at times more than 24 of us. I tell you, it must have been standing room only. Ahh. Good times.

5) I woke this morning without a headache. This is a rare, but good, thing.

4) No two women in the world are shaped alike. Apparently many women my size have boobs much larger than mine, boobs which have gravitated downward over the years. That combined with the fact that I’m not very tall in the first place, makes darts and shaped seams in ready-to-wear clothing a complete joke. Unfortunately that means I am doomed to wear shapeless, tentlike items of clothing which are oh, so flattering. Joy. The solution is, if I really want it to fit, I must make it myself. What can I say; I’m working on it, but tailoring clothing is tricky business. The failures seem somehow to outweigh the successes. I shall endeavor to persevere.

3) Coffee = elixir of the gods.

2) Today is Sunday. I am putting Pizza Soup in the slow-cooker this morning and then curling under my latest quilt project to handsew its binding and watch football. I also have some buttons to sew on a shirt for CJE. I’ll keep my Kindle within reach for when I get both of those done. I would say I would nap in the afternoon, but my little boy is determined none of us shall nap, least of all himself. I’m sorry if the NFL turns some of my readers off, but I love it.

1) If you could stop everyone from misusing/overusing one word in the English language, what would it be?

(For me it would be “awesome.” I hear this word used in regard to a whole lot of things that might be great, they may be super, they might even be phenomenal, but they are not really awe inspiring. Very little in this world is truly awesome. The panoramic vista of God’s creation inspires awe. The miraculous perfection of a newborn’s tiny hand is awesome. My car, while fantastic and something I am crazy about, is not awesome. Meeting a friend for lunch would be fun, it might even be great fun, but would it really be awesome? It would be nice if people understood the difference.)

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Creamy Chicken Corn Chowder

This is not a low-fat soup. If low-fat is your preference, I recommend you steer clear of chowders in general and mine in particular. That being said, this is the yummiest, most comforting soup you will ever eat.

The recipe:

1 can chicken broth
1 c water
3 med potatoes, chopped
3 med carrots, chopped
3 c frozen corn kernels
1 t minced garlic
½ t marjoram
½ t thyme
½ t black pepper
5 T flour
1½ c milk
½ c cream
6 oz Velveeta, cubed
1½ c cooked, cubed chicken

    Simmer first 9 ingredients until potatoes and carrots are tender, about 20-25 minutes. Combine milk, cream and flour until smooth. Add to vegetable mixture and cook and stir 2 minutes until thickened. Reduce heat and add cheese and chicken. Heat through and serve.
    Throw all ingredients into slow cooker. Cook on low, stirring somewhat frequently. Should take about 7-8 hours give or take. When the potatoes and carrots are cooked to your liking, eat it up!

I started with a recipe from a cookbook and tailored it to fit our tastes. That, to me, is what cooking is all about. So I want each of you to feel free to take this recipe and make it your own.

Our son, Liam, loves carrots so although the original recipe didn't call for them, I threw them in. Not only are they yummy, but they add a nice color to a soup that is otherwise quite bland looking.

We like a nice thick chowder so I increased the chunky bits (potatoes, corn, carrots) and slightly decreased the the liquid elements.