Friday, February 29, 2008


"Do blue plaid and blue stripes match?"

This is the question confronting me this morning before there was any coffee brewed.

If he didn't have any well crap that thought derailed.

See I'm not a morning person.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

CHICKEN CHICKEN let's eat chicken

Curry Chicken with Sweet Potatoes and Coconut Rice

2lbs chicken pieces (I used boneless skinless breast sliced into tenders)

4 sweet potatoes peeled and diced
1 onion diced
2/3 cup orange juice
2 tsp curry powder
1 clove garlic - mashed**
2 tbsp raw sugar **
salt and pepper to taste

in a crockpot place chicken, salt and pepper. Cover with onion and sweet potatoes. In a measuring cup combine, orange juice, garlic and curry powder. Pour over chiken and veggies. Cook on low for 6-7 hours.

The larger the chunks of sweet potato the less mushy they'll be.

I added four cloves of garlic because one is never enough. I used fresh squeezed orange juice so I added the raw sugar - after a taste when the dish was almost finished it needed something so I added the raw sugar.

Coconut Jasmine Rice -

1 1/2 cups rice (i use Jasmine because it is more fragrant that regular but hey use what ya got)
15 ozs coconut milk
enough water to make three cups of liquid

heat water and coconut milk to boiling and add rice. Cook over low heat until liquid is absorbed.

Curry Chicken and Sweet Potatoes with Coconut Rice

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Nine Years ago tonight

I was in labor waiting to meet my soon to be born second son.

The one who was determined to BE. A determination and stubborness that he still has today.

He was conceived on my last month on the pill.

He was my biggest baby, but easiest delivery.

He was my easiest pregnancy a text book pregnancy.

He's the middle child. The middle brother.

He's my Tommyboy

Friday, February 22, 2008

Orange Muffin's recipe Courtesy of Chris

First off I have to say my friend Chris is an awesome baker, friend and mom. She can sew and can kick anyone's butt in scrabble

She rocks

Orange muffins 

1 1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt 

1 teaspoon baking soda 

3/4 cup cooking oil 

1 cup sugar 

2 eggs 

1 teaspoon vanilla 

1/4 cup fresh orange juice

2 tablespoons grated orange rind 

Mix flour, salt and baking soda in a small bowl; set aside.


Make sure you have expert quality control tasting errrrrr squeezing the oranges.

Quality Control

Combine oil, sugar and eggs in a large bowl. Mix well.

Add the oil

Cracking Up

Add vanilla, orange juice and orange rind. Blend.

Add flour mixture and mix just until moistened.

Combine All Ingridients

Mix It Up

Batter will be lumpy. Pour into muffin pan.

Bake at 350° for 18 to 20 minutes.

Let sit for three minutes before removing from pan. Cool on rack.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Love Thursday - Little Hnads covered in Dirt

I love these little hands. For almost five years they have been my near constant companions.

The Good Earth?

From the time he was a wee babe, his dimpled little newborn hands would grasp my finger as he nursed.

Those little hands have colored (sometimes on the walls) The have helped bak bread and mix cookies. Theyve snuck a taste of creamy frosting waiting for a cake.

I've held them in mine as we crossed the street. soon enough, they'll wave good bye as They, and the little boy they belong to head off into our big blue world.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Signs of Spring

In my part of the world, Spring is showing signs of impending arrival. I am not a fan of cold weather so I can't wait. I can't wait for the warm breezes and blue skies. I can't wait for butterflies and birs. I can't wait for green to replace the brown. I didn't wait to get out and work the ground. I've had a lot of issues here lately so, the opportunity to work the soil and get things ready for new life and pretty flowers is a welcome relief.

Work gloves

Joey and I are the ground crew. He started the day with his (well his dad's) work gloves.

As we gathered our supplies, we looked in the garage bed and the dafodills have started to bloom

Beauty in Bloom


We bought some daylilies, strawberries, onion sets and a rose bush last night to put in the ground. Since it was warm, I decided to start to work on the daylillies. Joey wanted to help clear the bed from it's grass and weeds.

The Ground Crew

Notice, now the gloves are off - he's determined even though the rake is bigger than he is.


The gloves are OFF

He found a witches hat in the garage, a remnant of Halloween, every gardner needs a witches hat. If you can't pull the weeds out, you can cast them out.

You Garden in a Witches Hat right?

This little green sprout promises that spring is around the corner. Soon enough, these will be a lovely blooming day lilly standing tall against the heat of summer.


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Curse words

Yesterday Tommy and Joey were sitting on the couch eating a snack. Tommy kept takinf popcorn from Joey's bowl. joey was getting exasperated and upset.

Finally, Joey, tired of the grabbing and stealing moved away. He came and sat by me. He told his brother that he was a a a a a a a CARBOHYDRATE.

I am not sure where he got that from, but it was the worst word he could think of.

So I guess Tommy is a bad carb.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Love Thursday - Tic Tac Toe

Happy Love Thursday.

It's also Valentine's day. Back when I was younger, I love Valentine's Day. what would the boy of the week get me, what would he think of my gift? when Eric and I were dating, engaged and newlywed, I loved Valentine's Day. What's not to love about hearts and flowers and chocolate? I am not sure what changed or when. Now, I prefer not to celebrate Valentine's Day.

Maybe it's knowing tht Valentine's day is a day about martyrdom for Christ - not jewlery in pretty velvet boxes.

Maybe it's because I have been married a while and I know love is more than just one day. Showing your love is more than a date on the calendar. Rather, in order to keep a marriage strong - you need to show your love every day. I delight in the little love text message left on my phone. Love is making home made chicken soup when he's home sick. Love is taking care of the house when you are on bed rest - because bed rest means bed rest. Love means not complaining that the house isn't clean exactly the way you want because he is trying and you are on bedrest. Love is snuggling together on the couch after the kids are in bed. Love is seeing a movie you don't want to see because the other really wants to see it. Love is sharing your favorite snack. Love is letting the other have a day to do what they want without complaint. Love is being mature enough to accept that it does not mean constant togetherness. Love is seeing him in your three children.

Love is knowing that even though you are so mad and angry - it will get better because love believes all things, hopes all things endures ALL things. Love never fails.

How can you confine that to one day and one little Hallmark card?

X's and O's tic tac Toe - I love you

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

60 things

60 Things You Possibly Didn't Know About Me

1. What is in the back seat of your car right now?
a pair of boots for the cobbler to repair one of Joey's coats, charles' compass and that's about it

2. When was the last time you threw up
2006 - I had a stomach virus

3. What's your favorite curse word?
it depends - today it's been HELL

4. Name 3 people who made you smile today?
Joey, my husband, and Bette

5. What were you doing at 8 am this morning?
dealing with a crazy person and telling my kid to get his butt to the bus stop

6. What were you doing 30 minutes ago?
Finishing the newsletter

7. What will you be doing 3 hours from now?

8. Have you ever been to a strip club?

9. What is the last thing you said aloud?
JUST GO TO BED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

10. What is the best ice cream flavor?
I don't eat ice cream

11. What was the last thing you had to drink?
decaf grande two pump mocha

12. What are you wearing right now?
my heart jammies and a brown t-shirt that says B Prepared

13. What was the last thing you ate?
harbo gold gummiw

14. Have you bought any new clothing items this week?

15. When was the last time you ran?
um yeah

16. What's the last sporting event you watched?
I don't do sports

18. Who is the last person you emailed?
my loopy friends

19. Ever go camping?

20. Do you have a tan?

24. Do you drink your soda from a straw?

25. What did your last IM say?

26. Are you someone's best friend?
I hope so

27. What are you doing tomorrow?
Finish my newsletter, start on my Circle of Love reports, all the mom stuff and - well who knows

28. Where is your mom right now?
At her house?

29. Look to your left, what do you see?
a toy chest that needs to be straightened and the wall

30. What color is your watch?

31. What do you think of when you think of Australia ?
men with sexy accents

32. Would you consider plastic surgery?
Hell ya

33. What is your birthstone?

34. Do you go in at a fast food place or just hit thedrive thru?
Drive thru

35.How many kids do you want?

36. Do you have a dog?
yep - a slightly spoiled boxer

37. Last person you talked to on the phone?

38. Have you met anyone famous?
only in their own heads - actually I worked with Dayna devin when we were both working at a small time TV station.

39. Any plans today?
yes and they all went out the window around 8:45 AM

40. How many states have you lived in?

41. Ever go to college?

42. Where are you right now?

43. Biggest annoyance in your life right now?
crazy people

44. Last song listened to?
Beautiful day

46. Are you allergic to anything?
cleaning - eggs and sulfa drugs plus various pollens

47. Favorite pair of shoes you wear all the time?
a toss up between my green sling back pumps, my black kitten healed flats and my black boots but really they are all my favorites and I love them all

48. Are you jealous of anyone?
I don't think so

50. Is anyone jealous of you?
LOL! They shouldn't be if they are!

51. What time is it?
11 something

52. Do any of your friends have children?

53. Do you eat healthy?
yes. .

54. What do you usually do during the day?
seat on my butt, eatting bon bons and watching Oprah

55. Do you hate anyone right now?

56. Do you use the word 'hello' daily?
No. I

58. How old will you be turning on your next birthday?
I;ll be celebrating an anniversary of my 30th birthday

59. Have you ever been to Six Flags?

60. How did you get one of your scars?
well there was this guy - oh wait no - I cut my hand on a broken vase when I was 9. I wanted to save the flower I made in Scouts

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Almost a week

since we begin our TV experience and I am not missing it. Everybody else is getting busted sneaking a peak.

Monday, February 11, 2008


Originally uploaded by blondie478.
My sweet little boy

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Coke is IT? No coke is HIT.....

My oldest son and husband just called. They are on their way home for a weekend of camping with scouts. The boys blasted cans of coke .

The oldest child was all full of testosteroney goodness and was proud of himself. He made Coke spew all over the place after a well aimed rifle.

This is the difference between men and women. i would have opened the soda and drank it's caramely caffeniated goodness. Men, even the young ones, see a gun and ammunition and shoot it - just because they can.

The younger brothers were just as excited to learn that the can was hit and injured in this experiment.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

this is How we roll

Yesterday the boys had a day off from school (supposed "staff" development) so we headed to the mall. Charles needed new shoes because he has outgrown the ones we bought in late October. While we were there, the boys asked to ride the carousel. Normally, we're in a hurry but today we had the time and I had my new lens so I needed to try it out too.

Waiting to ride

Waiting for a Ride

Come ON Mom!

Come ON Mom - Let's ride

He was climbing the fence the other day and knocked his face - again. I think he's going to have a permanent scar there he scrapes and cuts there so often

Ready to Ride and Holding on for dear life

Ready to go

(I'm not happy with this - the area has tinted skylights that make a blue cast on everything - these are all done in manual though - and the horses were moving - I like the VR)

Howdy Ma'am!

Howdy Ma'am

A Boy and His Horse

A boy and his Horse

the carousel was going really fast. I was getting nauseated watching it - looking through the view finder was worse.

Brown Wins it By a Nose

Winner By a Nose


Giddy 'ap

Living My Dream

My Dream - not his

Charles needed new shoes - his frigate sized feet have grown so much in the last three months. He's in men's sizes but not many stores carry sizes that small (what do you do in the meantime - he can't fit children's shoes - a man's 7 should be readily avaliable) so the salesmen, sensing my - well I'll go to another mall and use my associate discount mood went to the back and brought every shoe in Charles' size. - I made him take back the 6's - why would I buy my kid shoes that don't fit ?

anyway - this is my DREAM a stack of shoes in my size that I'd wear - almost taller than me. we'll leave the rolling around nekkid on the leather part out - i LOVE shoes.

for Charles not so much. He'd have been happy to have me bring him home shoes and he could avoid the mall all together. I promised him a trip to the bookstore if he made a quick decision.

Barren - Lenten Reflections


Today, as I was editing this photo Tommy and I were talking.

He was asking how many more days until we finished Lent and couldn't he please just watch a little TV - he DID do his chores after all. I told him no and he could go out and play - the day is beautiful and we are supposed to get rain Monday - go enjoy the day God made.

Tommy asked me what barren meant. I told him it meant empty. He thought for a moment and asked if that's what barren desert meant in the song we sang last week.

I told him that yes, that was what barren meant - devoid of anything. But a dessert is not really barren. A dessert, during monsoon is full of life. I told him this tree is not really barren. The tree is dormant. The warmth and rain (hopefully) that comes from spring will help make this tree grow leaves and be green.

We are like the tree. Now, during Lent, we are barren, in the desert of our sacrifice. On Easter, Jesus will rise and fill us with the love and hope and promise of new life with Him.

Lent is like a tree in winter. A period of dormancy where we sacrifice and regroup and await the Light of Christ.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Things we really don't need

a card that burps it's valentine greeting.

Nothing says love like a big loud BELCH.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Love Thursday - The Boss of Me

The Boss of Me

This picture was taken in November. My women's group donates 100 turkeys to a mission run by the Missionaries of Charity. The mission in South Dallas feeds almost 700 people each week. Thanksgiving is no different. For my family, this has become a tradition. We start off our holiday season visiting the shelter and mission with my group and delivering our turkeys.

I think, for me as a mother, it shows my kids that the world is not what goes on in our home, their schools and our neighborhood. Ou community is much more and we are fortunate to have what we do. Eric and I feel blessed to be able to help out and it puts the whole Thanksgiving and holiday in perspective for us. We all need to take the time to be thankful for what we have.

Sister is not shy about putting everyone to work. She even found a job for Joey (age 4) He had to help flatten boxes and then put them in piles.

Because he's his mother's son he is taking the time to make sure his brothers are doing their jobs correctly. He can be rather bossy - though *I* have no clue where he gets that trait from.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

To change and to change for the better are two different things.
German proverb

A change for the better is what Lent is all about. We, as Christians strive to make ourselves more like Christ. Through our sacrifice and penance throughout Lent we make ourselves more Like Christ.

For the past few years, we've not really given up anything for Lent. The past two years, I sought to increase my prayer life. Eric has given up caffeine (yeah that was fun) and the soda in general (again more fun) They boys gave up picking on each other (that lasted two days) - and then they worked on doing good deeds. We also made an attempt to go to Stations of the Cross together. That was easier. Our parish does soup before - there's food.

This year, I felt the need to do something more. Something we would all benefit from and gain something from. So for the next 40 days we will not watch TV as a family. For the next 40 days - our TV is unplugged.

I got the idea from an article in the national newsletter for the Catholic Daughters. Each year, the national court encourages local courts to acknowledge Morality in the Media's turn of the TV Day on February 14. The idea is to turn off the TV and give your family, the best gift - quality time.

I thought this would be a great idea. Then I wondered would one day be enough? I don't just show my husband I love him on Valentine's Day - love and marriage are things that take an everyday commitment. I thought quality family time would be a great thing to give my family for Lent - Having to miss Johnny Fairplay duke it out on Survivor Fans vs All Stars - is sacrifice.

This year, we are giving up TV. Well MOST TV. Joey is four and no TV for 40 days would be hard for him to understand. So he still gets his four favorite PBS shows. Eric and I can still watch the nightly news.

For the next 40 days there will be no Ugly Betty or Survivor. There will be no Looney Tunes or This Old House (Tommy is in love with This Old House) and no History Channel (really how much does one need to know about WWII airplanes - Charles thinks there is never enough information about these things)

Instead, tonight after Ashes and dinner, we are going to sit down and come up with 40 family friendly activities to do instead of watching Tim Gunn (how I love him) saying "Designers make it work." (Please God, if it not too much to ask let Chris March and Christian make it to Fashion Week - please - and keep the writers on strike at least until early March)

and so it begins. No TV but instead an attempt to give my family quality time with each other.

(Eric has added a clause - we have to take a family walk nightly - he's willing to turn off the TV if we go out for a nightly walk - so maybe this will be 40 days with no TV and 40 pounds lighter between the two of us)

Monday, February 04, 2008

Just a question today

Who in their right mind let their child go on a campout with an imaginary giant purple dinosaur in charge?

Is it just me who'd say NO?

Just onderin'

Friday, February 01, 2008

Busy Busy

I’m busy, busy, dreadfully busy

You’ve no idea what I have to do.

Busy, busy, shockingly busy

Much, much too busy for you.

I think, at one time or another, all of us moms feel the same way. We have work deadlines. We have school functions, scouts, sports, church etc. Add in a few spousal events and the work of keeping a house and we are all much too busy.

But at what cost? What point do we draw the line? How do we determine what needs to go and what activities stay - or do we not do that and try to do all of it?

I forgot to make soup.

My women's group makes a meal quarterly and delivers it to a home that helps teens who've been removed from their homes. I signed up for soup.

Eric got sick, Joey got sick, there was work and rumors of layoffs looming and all sorts of other things and I forgot to call and say "I can't bring soup"

So no one brought soup.

I feel bad, but I am also mad.

For this group I am the president. I attend the meetings no one else attends, I make sure we all get to training. I spend three hours at least before each meeting getting things ready and printed and neat and tidy. I call the members and remind them. I coordinate room requests and fundraisers with each parish and thenn, when no one else shows up or forgets or what ever, I deal with it.

The woman in charge of the event could have called me wednesday and asked me if I still planned on meeting her. It would have jogged my memory and I wouldn't have forgotten the soup.

But this week, my family and it's strep throat germs came first.