Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Me Want Cookie

Back in my preschool days, I loved Cookie Monster. I loved how he had a hand that actually picked things up, I loved his googly eyes, I loved the way cookies would fly to pieces as he ate them, I loved how much he loved cookies!

I myself have a bit of a sweet tooth. I could be Bubba from Forrest Gump and list all the sweet yumminess I adore, but I won't. I will just say I love dessert. That doesn't help me in the weight department! I can't give up the desserts. I can cut way back on what I eat, but I have never been able to completely give up sweet things.

I have heard from many people that once they gave up the sweet things for their diet, months later, eating one was not so good. They had no taste for it.


Not me. I know I will forever be a Cookie Monster wanna be. I don't even know if I really believe those weirdo's. Loose their taste for sweet goodness. As if!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Creepy Bathrooms Are Better When They Are Yours

After coming home from a three night camping trip, dealing with disgusting bathrooms and creepy shower stalls, the first thing I did was take a long shower in my own bathroom.

It was so wonderful!

As I washed, I thought how creepy bathrooms are all relative. When we first moved into our house, I detested my bathroom. I felt dirty even after scrubbing the shower several times. It was not right at all. But standing there today I was just so happy to be at home, I realized the ugly, disgusting shower is not so bad anymore.

I know other people look at it and shudder: it has an ancient, chipped bathtub and the shower walls are covered with a lovely golden tropical design. It's creepy to them! But to me, it has become my own.

And after two days of using quarters to buy some minutes in a shower I was repulsed by, I was so glad to come home. 70's tropical motif and all!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Oscar Mayer, How Could You?

Oh, Oscar Mayer, how could you do this to me?

I've been your number one fan of your all beef franks. I love their texture, their pale pink loveliness, their all-beef-no-questionable-meat-ness, the way they blacken over an open fire. They are the only hot dogs I will buy, for years and years.

A few weeks ago, we were camping in Oregon. We ran out of hot dogs, which is easy to do since that is our favorite camping dinner, and we stopped at a local grocery store to buy OM all beef franks. They looked different, more red, and when we ate them, they were DIFFERENT.

The taste and texture was like eating a SAUSAGE! No! No! No! I want my hot dog to be like a rolled up piece of bologna, smooth and delicious.

I told myself it was because we were in a different state. But I discovered yesterday as I shopped for another camping trip, Oscar Mayer has a "new and improved" label on their all beef hot dogs, and they are the same horrible red color. No thank you. Why mess with a good thing in the first place?

So, Oscar Mayer, you have forced me to shop around for a new brand of hot dogs. Ball-Park all beef franks, step up to bat. Let's see how you plump.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Saturday Morning Perfection

Finally, our kids have reached an age where sleeping in on Saturday mornings is something we all like to do. The last couple of years has had them up early, knocking on our door to ask if they could make something for breakfast. Today, I woke up at 9 and couldn't believe it!

I got up, let Emma out of her crate so she could snuggle up in bed with Mom and Dad for a little bit. My husband and I laid there until almost 10, just enjoying the soft sunlight, the quiet, and our first Saturday of no commitments in a long time.

We got up, took Emma for a nice long walk, talked about how much she loves a new puppy that has moved in down the street, and got back home to find the kids half up. My husband went and got doughnuts as a special treat. I made us a pot of coffee, and when he got home, we took our doughnuts and our mugs of coffee and sat on the porch.

There is nothing in the world as good to me as a Saturday morning in the summer, sitting on the porch, drinking our coffee and eating our breakfast, watching people walk by. It's a smidge white trash, but I don't care. If I'm lucky, the neighbors across the street are out on their porch smoking, and I can catch a hint of smoke in the air. I don't smoke, but it reminds me of Grandma D, and that makes my coffee all that much better.

Emma sits between our chairs, hoping for a crumb, we can hear the kids laughing over Saturday morning TV, usually re-runs of The Soup (We love you, Joel McHale), and my husband and I can just relax...talking, laughing, enjoying each other's company.

It's Perfection.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Holding Hands

My husband and I met in high school. Yep. High school sweethearts in this day and age. We feel so very retro! We met, fell in love, and just knew. We clicked, right down to the way my hand fits perfectly in his.

Maybe it was because we met so young, and holding hands was a very exciting thing to do, but we've never stopped. We have to be able to sit close and hold hands while we watch TV, while we eat dinner, when we drink our morning coffee on the porch. We walk the dog, holding hands. Even when I'm mad at him, he holds my hand. I like that he won't let go. He says I'm a keeper, flashing eyes and all.

We can't buy a car unless the test drive proves it's conducive to hand holding!

It's a legacy we're passing on to our kids. I know when they grow up, they'll tell their kids stories about how Grandma and Grandpa always held hands, everywhere, all the time.

When I think about Heaven, and how one has to go first, I know that one will be waiting up there, hand ready.

That is my idea of heaven. Holding his hand always.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

A Footnote In The Bird Saga

I can do many things: clean up puke in the middle of the night, jerry rig the toilet to flush with a shoe lace, hold Emma down while I brush her teeth. I can not catch a bird. I can't even get close to it without embarrassing myself.

And if it's hurt, flopping around the yard, I am really freaked out by it. I feel so bad. I wish I could catch it and take it to our local wildlife sanctuary. I can't.

Twice this year, we've had different birds with injured wings in our yard. The first time, Emma was trying to sniff it, I was trying to get her away, but when the bird changed directions and headed towards me, I ran to the house. Maybe, just maybe, I was screaming like a little girl. I was totally wigged out. I did manage to get Emma away, and the bird escaped into the bushes.

Yesterday, another bird was running around the yard, it's wing totally messed up. Emma would have made a great sheepdog. She herded that bird to exactly where she wanted it, she cut it off at every turn. She can change directions on a dime. She wasn't hurting it, only sniffing it. I did not want her anywhere near that bird. I was trying to get her away, while not wanting to get close to the bird.

Later I asked my sister if it was as comical as it seemed. She said yes, and terrifying. We all suffer from the same bird fear!

Everyone except Emma.

We got her inside, and didn't let her out until the kids went outside and said the bird was gone.

Whew. I don't care where it went, as long as it was not in my yard.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Coffee, Sweet Nectar of the Gods

Coffee, Coffee, Coffee.

I'm so hooked on you.

It started as a kid, I loved the smell of coffee. A fresh pot brewing or the lid coming off the can or walking in the grocery store coffee aisle.....I loved it. Couldn't wait to taste the real thing.

Tasted it and hated it. How could something smell so good and taste so bitterly awful?

Then the espresso-latte-mocha craze hit and I tasted a mocha and have never looked back. I love a 12 oz double shot non fat no whip mocha. While my husband was gone I switched it up to a 16 oz triple shot, because on the days I did manage to treat myself, I really want to treat myself. Plus, if I'm only buying one, and not two, I can afford a bigger cup!

By now I know I love coffee, but I resisted getting a coffee pot. I knew I'd drink the whole pot by myself. Make it in the morning, then continually reheat a cup until it was all gone. And that is exactly how it goes. If only I had the spelling skills to do the word jumbles in the newspaper, I would be my Grandma D. She always had a cup of coffee sitting next to her as she worked her puzzles. She always had a smoke too, but I can forgo that likeness.

I did not know just how addicted I was until I went to work with my 16 oz triple mocha and got caught in the office, licking the lid. It started to spill and I didn't want to loose one drop!

Even after I was caught and we all had a good laugh, I couldn't resist licking up the last of the mocha. It is sweet nectar of the gods after all, and I should treat it with respect!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Corn Dogs: Meat and Veg

A couple of years ago, I started buying vegetarain corn dogs. I told my husband, but not my kids. If they knew, whoa nelly, they wouldn't eat a single thing I served again!

Well, as happens to all secrets, it eventually came out that they were veggie corn dogs, but by then it was too late. They liked them. My daughter and I love them. No questionable meat products in those bad boys. Just good old soy!

My son says they are fine, but he loves a good Foster Farms corn dog. One day, we saw a huge box on super sale at our commissary, and he asked if he could cook them for dinner. All right. He does take turns on Wednesday nights cooking dinner, and 8 times out of 10 his sister's dinner of choice is a vegetarian meal. I can't say yes to her, and no to him, when I have no moral reason to not eat a meat corn dog. Just a personal preference.

I buy the box, and there are about 30 corn dogs in there. Good deal for the price, but 30? Really? We all have one the night he made dinner and it was good. As good as my veggie one? I don't think so.

The next time we had corn dogs, I made a Foster Farms for him, and a veggie one for my daughter. It's not hard to make two different kinds. They bake at the same temp, for the same time. It's a very easy way to make both kids happy.

I've cooked both at the same time for several dinners now, and each time, my kids are so surprised that I've done that. He doesn't have to eat a veggie one? She doesn't have to deal with meat? I'm like Super Mom in that moment.

I really wish that all of motherhood was as simple as making both kinds of corn dogs.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Mark Harmon Is Still My McDreamy

It was 1986, I was about 12 years old, and the TV guide arrived with this dreamy guy on the cover. I still clearly remember thinking he was sooo cute!, and I clipped his every picture out, even the black and white ones advertising his show (one I was not allowed to watch, btw).

I used my own money to buy the People magazine when he was named sexiest man alive, but I did not cut those photos out. The magazine is still in pristine condition in my hope chest. I know, right? It's been over twenty years, and I still have the magazine, in my hope chest no less!

I watched Moonlighting when he was on it, loved the movie Summer School and about died of excitement when saw him come on screen in the remake of Freaky Friday.

I just saw a commercial for his show, NCIS, and even with his graying hair, he's still my McDreamy!