Friday, April 30, 2010

Email of the Day

This one made me say, "Ewwww!"

How do you know your butt smells?
Ok, yeah, I know this is just childish and immature, but hey, that's what happens when you spend 90% of your time with 5 year-olds!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Impromptu Concert

I've been meaning to share this for a couple weeks now, but we all know my brain is slowly turning to a pile of mush. I had intended to do a post about Stud Muffin, and the rest of the drama club, and their spring play, A Few Good Men. I'm really not up to a lengthy post about it right now (since it's freakin' 70 outside, and I'm REALLY cranky!) but let me just say, the show was DA BOMB DIGGETTY!! I'm SO incredibly proud of those boys, it's riDONKulous!

I will share this little clip, though, that I was able to capture in the green room during intermission. I wish I had captured the entire 15 minute intermission, because it pretty much was all like this, but by the time I was able to get my camera, it was just about time to start the second act.

Look out, SNC! ;-)

Can somebody PLEASE explain to me...

...why, at 10:33 PM on April 29, my freakin' widget says it's 70 mother-scratchin' degrees outside! Ugh!!!!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Email of the Day

The newlyweds were only married two weeks, when the husband said to the wife, “Honey, I’m going to Hank’s Tavern to have a beer. I’ll be right back.”

“Where are you going, Coochy Coo?” asked the wife.

“I’m going to the bar, Pretty Face,” he answered. “I’m going to have a beer.”

The wife said, “You want a beer, my love?” She opened the door to the refrigerator and showed him 25 different kinds of beer, brands from 12 different countries: Germany, Holland, Japan, India, etc.

The husband didn’t know what to do, and the only thing he could think of saying was, “Yes, Lollipop…but at the bar…you know…they have frozen glasses….”

He didn’t get to finish the sentence, because his wife interrupted him by saying, “You want a frozen glass, Puppy Face?” She took a huge beer mug out of the freezer, so frozen that she was getting chills holding it.

The husband, looking a bit pale, said, “Yes, Tootsie Roll, but at the bar they have hors d’oeuvres that are really delicious…I won‘t be long. I‘ll be right back. I promise, OK?”

“You want hors d‘oeuvres, Poochie Pooh?” She opened the oven and took out 4 dishes of different hors d‘oeuvres: chicken wings, pigs in the blanket, mushroom caps, and little quiches

“But, my Sweet Honey…at the bar…you know… there’s swearing, dirty words and all that…”


And, they lived happily ever after.

Isn’t that a sweet story?

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Just for the hell of it...

...I thought I'd share Stud's sophmore year photo. (Sheesh! It's almost a year old now!) I needed to scan it for a project I was working on today, so since it's already in the computer.... How cute is this kid!?

Friday, April 23, 2010

From the writing center...

I hope you can click on this to enlarge it. (Sometimes Blogger is a pain in the ass!)

Just in case it won't enlarge, and/or you can't read Kindergarten, here's the translation:

One upon a time there was a guy called Abiyoyo. He was as tall as a tree and could eat people up. He goes to the sheep pasture. He grabs a whole sheep. He grabs a whole cow. The End.

Abiyoyo is one of my babies' absolute FAVORITE stories. I love that he drew from his prior knowledge (don't you love those buzz words!?) to write this story for me. And, check out some of that inventive spelling. I love that he wrote "hoe" for whole. Too funny!

If you aren't familiar with Abiyoyo, you have GOT to check out this video I found on YouTube. SO COOL!

Oh my hell, I just found this one. It's even cooler!! Oh, how I wish YouTube wasn't blocked at school. I would be showing this to my babies ASAP!

I have the entire collection of Between the Lions videos, and there is one that features Abiyoyo. I can't even tell you how many times my babies have watched it. I also have it on tape for my listening center. They have yet to tire of listening to it. Our version is read by James Earl Jones, which makes it even cooler.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Email of the Day

Did you guys know about this? Cuz, I certainly didn't. I thought it was too important not to share.

Cleaning for a Reason

If you know any woman currently undergoing chemo, please pass the word to her that there is a cleaning service that provides FREE housecleaning - 1 time per month for 4 months while she is in treatment. All she has to do is sign up and have her doctor fax a note confirming the treatment. Cleaning for a Reason will have a participating maid service in her zip code area arrange for the service. This organization serves the entire USA and currently has 547 partners to help these women. It’s our job to pass the word and let them knowthat there are people out there that care. Be a blessing to someone and pass this informationalong.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

I've been in stitches all day...

Stud's drama club is putting on it's spring show this weekend. The kids had to be at school at 12:30 this afternoon, which allowed him to sleep in a little after being up late last night for Opening Night.

This is what I did while I was waiting for Stud to get dressed this morning...
...while waiting for the show to end...
...and what I did after the show. (I made the brim a little wider on this one. I like it better than the first.)
I have now made a total of 6 baby hats, and I finally think I have it down. Look at the size difference between the first one I made last weekend, and the one I made today! It the exact same pattern, but I believe the difference is the tension. I think I was pulling the stitches too tight when I first started. Now that I've got some kind of "form," I've learned to relax my hands a bit
Here are the two finished hats for KC's sister's twins. I hate to toot my own horn, but damn, they're cute!!
So far, since I taught myself to crochet a week ago, I've made 6 hats and 3 scarves. How hilarious is that? I made a scarf a day for the first three days. The funniest part of that is that it was in the 80s when I made those! I think I'm going to pack them away for the holidays. Or, maybe I'll make them again, now that I've gotten the hang of it...

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Email of the Day (NOT for the kids!)

The Differences Between Men and Woman

(This one is my favorite!)

Monday, April 12, 2010

I just cracked myself up! (updated)

So, naturally, after school I headed straight over to Walmart to buy some yarn. I was so excited to make the baby hats, I couldn't help myself!!! Like I predicted, it took my an hour to make this.

SO cute, right? I can't believe it actually looks like a hat!!! Now, for the kicker...
hang in there.....

I was just about to pull it all apart, but then it occurred to me that it just might be the right size for a preemie. Anyone out there have any thoughts? I'm starting to think I should just make a whole bunch of them, pink and blue, and donate them to the hospital for all those sweet little preemies. They need to stay warm, don't they?
I decided to go ahead and finish off the brim of this baby girl's hat. It has a cute little lacy edge to it.

But, good Lord, it's tiny!!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Oh, and I forgot to mention....

This is what I did while watching Saturday Night Live last night. It's the same lacy pattern as the scarf I made on Friday. I think it's really pretty, and it's really a super easy pattern to follow (obviously!!). I love earth tones, which is why I chose this yarn. I teased Stud earlier, telling him I was making him a camouflage scarf, and I expected him to wear it. Bwah haha!

I went online this morning and found the most amazing baby booties and really cute hats that I'm going to tackle this week. They seem pretty easy to make, and they have videos that I can follow, so I'm pretty confident that I can handle them. According to the video, the hats can be made really quickly. If I could crochet as fast as the guy who made the videos, I can whip a hat out in about 20 minutes. So, I'm giving myself an hour. :)

I'm even more excited about these because I already know who I'm making them for. My brother's on-again-off-again girlfriend (of over 10 freakin' years!) has a sister who is expecting twins in about 5 months. AND, she's having a boy and a girl! JACKPOT!! I'm so happy for her. I figure, if I can't get these right this week, I have a few months to practice, right?

I found a couple more...

...of my favorite pictures of my daddy. ( It suddenly occurred to me that I could go back through my archives to find pictures I already posted. DUH!)


Wow, what a difference a decade makes!
Daddy and his Big Bro.

Daddy's Favorite Thing

Stud and I drove out to the sportsmen's club my dad belongs to, after stopping for cupcakes to share with his buddies. My daddy is a world-class trapshooter, so I thought it was only appropriate to capture him doing the things he loves most on his birthday.

My two favorite men!

Happy Birthday, Daddy!!

Since I have yet to transfer my files from my old computer to my new, I don't have many pictures of my daddy to post here. None of these are very recent, but you can still see how damn cute he is!!

This is from about a year and a half ago, at my uncle's 80th birthday party. This is my dad, my uncle and their older sister. Oh, yeah, I said older! This photo doesn't really do her justice, but trust me, she does NOT look like an 85 year old woman. Thank God there are some great genes in this family. This is my uncle who has been quite ill lately, so it's almost hard to look at this picture, because he looks so healthy here.
This actually from my dad's birthday 2 years ago. We had just opened the bar exactly a week before this, and we had a big bash for my dad's birthday there. This is a horrid picture of my parents, and they would kill me if they knew I was putting it out there for the world to see (well, ok mostly just my mother would kill me!) but I wanted to show you what my dad actually wore for part of his party. One of my silly cousins bought him a card that punched out to make a crown. Can you see what that crown says?! BIRTHDAY SLUT!! Bwah hahahaha!!! This was my dad's 65th birthday, and he actually wore THIS on his head!
This picture has been posted several times here already, but as you already know, this is one of my favorite pictures with my daddy.

A father is always making his baby into a little woman.
And when she is a woman he turns her back again.
~Enid Bagnold

A father carries pictures where his money used to be.

~Author Unknown

Any man can be a father. It takes someone special to be a dad.

~Author Unknown

The greatest gift I ever had
Came from God; I call him Dad!
~Author Unknown

The first man a little girl falls in love with is her Dad.
-- Author Unknown

The lucky man has a daughter as his first child.
-- Spanish Proverb

To her the name of father was another name for love.
-- Fanny Fern

Saturday, April 10, 2010

I may need an intervention...

OK, second scarf finished. I was up bright and early this morning to go buy more yarn. I ended up buying 4 more skeins, in different colors.
I also couldn't resist picking up another book. I don't know if I'll actually be able to tackle a project of this size just yet, but what the hell, I'll give it the old college try!

It's official...

...I'm obsessed! This is what I've been doing since the last post:
I wish this picture wasn't so blurry, so you could see how pretty and lacey this scarf is. I'm SO pissed at myself now for making the last scarf twice as long as it was supposed to be, cuz now I ran out of yarn in the middle of this one. Since this is really still a practice piece, I went so far as to use the left over pieces I had cut for fringe for the other scarf, and tied them together to go a little further with this one. But, now I'm completely out. Ugh!! I wish our Walmart was still open 24 hours, cuz I'd be there right now instead of typing this.

Well, you'll know where I'll be first thing in the morning. Oops, it's actually about 1:45 AM, so I should say where I'll be in a few hours. Yeah, I'm a loser....

Friday, April 9, 2010

Look what I did today...

OMG! I can't believe I was able to do this in one day. Now, if you're a real crocheter, please don't enlarge the photo, or I'm certain you'll find a ton of mistakes. But from far away, it doesn't look that bad, does it?

I may have mentioned in the past that I wanted to learn how to knit and crochet. (Strangely enough, I knew how to do both as a kid, but as an adult, I just couldn't get the hang of it again.) I bought myself a little "kit" last weekend that came with a bunch of needles and a book. I decided to tackle the book last night when I couldn't sleep. I started one of the projects, which was a cell phone bag, but I just couldn't get it. The project is done on an afghan needle (which came with the kit) but I just couldn't seem to get it to work. The whole thing kept curling up on me. After the second time I pulled it apart, I was done. But then, this morning, after some refreshing iced coffee, I thought, what the hell, let's try something else.

This scarf didn't seem too hard, although I did get it about a foot long, when I realized I somehow did something to make it wider at some point, so I had to pull literally half of it apart, and start over. But, once I got the rhythm of it going, it went pretty fast. So fast, in fact, that I ended up making it literally twice the length that the pattern called for! The pattern called for a 34" scarf with 1' of fringe on each end. I ended up making a 68" scarf, so I only made the fringe about 7" on each end.

I just can't believe I made it. Now, the real question is, who's gonna use it? You ALL know I would NEVER wear a scarf. Hell, most of the time, I don't even wear a coat! My sister is the queen of the scarves, so maybe she'll want it. If she doesn't, I know my sweet mother-in-law will wear it. Well, she'll wear in next winter. Hey, I just remembered that I tried making a scarf a while back, which I DID give to my mother-in-law. Wait, didn't I do a post about it? Let me check...

Holy crap! I just spent an hour going back through old posts. What the hell is wrong with me!!? If I did post about my last attempt at crocheting, I can't find it. Why the hell I just wasted an hour looking for it is beyond me! Sheesh, I could have spent that hour crocheting!!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

I didn't know Mother Nature read my blog...

After my whining last night, I just heard the weather guy say there's a possibility of rain mixed with snow overnight. Woo hoo!!

Cheesy Potatoes

I just cracked myself up while preparing to write this post. Cheesy Potatoes is one of the recipes that we've been enjoying in our family for about 25+ years. I'm fairly certain all of you have eaten them, if not made them yourselves. My Bestest Friend makes them, but calls them Party Potatoes, so I'm sure there are probably other names for them, as well.

What made me laugh was that I looked in my recipe box to see if I actually had the recipe written down somewhere so I could give you the real deal. I tend to modify most recipes I make to better suit my taste, as I'm sure most people do.

Anyway, I came across a copy of a recipe from Ore Ida for something called Country Potatoes. I included it below. I'm pretty sure this is the "real" recipe, however, when you read my recipe below it, you'll see it's been significantly adjusted to add a substantial amount of fatty yumminess. Trust me, my version is awesome. And, truthfully, now that I'm thinking about it, it's probably not really any more fattening than the original recipe because the original calls for the addition of a full stick of melted butter. A full stick! I don't put any melted butter in mine, but I use more sour cream and cheese, so who knows. Maybe it's a wash? You probably could even use reduced-fat sour cream and/or cheese if you're really interested in saving some fat.

This is a great recipe to make with your kids (or even for kids to make by themselves) because outside of the onion, there's no chopping involved. And, you can easily substitute frozen chopped onions, so it's really a dump and mix recipe.

Country Potatoes

2lb bag Southern-style hash browns (the kind that are cubed)
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 can cream of chicken soup
½ cup chopped onion
1 stick melted butter
1 ½ cups cornflake crumbs
4 TBS melted butter

Preheat oven to 350. Mix hash browns, sour cream, cheese, soup, onions and melted butter together. Put in a 9x13 casserole. Mix crumbs and remaining butter, and sprinkle over the top. Bake at 350 for 1 hour.

Cheesy Potatoes

16 oz container sour cream
1 can cream of mushroom soup (or cream of chicken)
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese*
1 small or ½ large onion, finely diced
salt and pepper, to taste
2lb bag frozen Southern-style hash browns
1 ½ cups cornflakes
4 TBS melted butter

Preheat oven to 350. Mix sour cream, soup, cheese, onion, salt and pepper until well blended. Add hash browns and mix well. Spread evenly into 9x13 baking dish. Toss cornflakes with melted butter, then spread evenly over potato mixture. Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until cornflakes are golden and edges of casserole are bubbling.

*I don’t usually do the cornflakes anymore, only because I don’t typically have cornflakes in the house. Now, what I usually do is reserve some of the cheese, about ½ cup, and then sprinkling that over the potatoes instead of the cornflakes. The cornflakes, however, are very yummy, and I use them whenever I actually have them in the house. Truthfully, I used Special K once, cuz I didn’t have any cornflakes, and nobody was any the wiser. ;-)

Way to go, CPS!

Reading this made me physically sick.

Email of the Day

An oldie, but a goodie....

The teacher told her students they were going to do a fun experiment today. She gave them LifeSavers to taste. They had to tell her the flavors. The children began to identify the flavors by their color:

Green ...................Lime
Orange ................Orange

Finally the teacher gave them all HONEY lifesavers.

None of the children could identify the taste.

The teacher said, 'I will give you all a clue. It's what your
mother may sometimes call your father.'

One little girl looked up in horror, spit her lifesaver out and
yelled, 'Oh my God! They're ass-holes!

The teacher had to leave the room!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Oh, come ON!

It's 9:20 PM, and my weather widget says 74. It's freakin' April 6th, people!! IN CHICAGO! Ugh! Excuse me, I'm gonna go research prices for flights to Alaska...

I'm in a sharing mood...

Ok, my Bloggy Buddies, this is a recipe I've been making for about 20 years, and it's the most requested dish by my family. The part in black is the original recipe that I received from a friend at my wedding shower. The part in red is the alterations I've made to the recipe. I could eat this every single day of my life, it's THAT good! It's kinda a two-day recipe (you need to start the night before) but, oh, so worth it!

Taffy Apple Salad

• 1 can chunk pineapple (drain & reserve liquid)
• 2 cups mini marshmallows
• 1 Tablespoon flour
• ½ cup sugar
• 1 ½ Tablespoon white vinegar
• 1 egg, beaten
• 1 8oz container Cool Whip, thawed
(I use 2 8oz containers, usually the extra creamy)
• 1 ½ cups Spanish peanuts
(I use a can of nut topping, intended for ice cream sundaes. It more like what’s actually on a taffy apple!)
• 3 cups diced apples w/peel (I only use Granny Smith apples, [cuz that’s what I like!] and I run it through my apple/peeler/corer/slicer from Pampered Chef, so it’s not chunks of apple, it’s smaller pieces)

Bowl #1
Mix pineapple chunks and marshmallows. Cover with foil and refrigerate.

Bowl #2
Mix flour, pineapple juice, sugar, vinegar and egg. Cook until thick over medium heat. Refrigerate 8 hours or overnight.

To Assemble
In a large bowl mix Cool Whip, apples, peanuts and Bowls #1 and #2. Refrigerate at least 6 hours before serving. (I have a goofy, kinda anal-retentive way that I put this together. The first thing I do is put the custard sauce [bowl #2] in a huge mixing bowl, then I add the apple pieces, and mix thoroughly, so each piece is coated in custard. Then, I add the nut topping [reserving a few tbs for garnish] and mix again, so that each piece of apple is coated with nuts. I then mix in the pineapple/marshmallow mix [bowl #1], again mixing thoroughly. Finally, I add the Cool Whip, one container at a time, mixing thoroughly after each container. I then transfer it to whatever serving bowl I’m going to use, and top it with the reserved nut topping. Refrigerate at least 6 hours.)

Monday, April 5, 2010

For JLo

Ok, I gotta tell ya, J, that I'm one of those really annoying people who NEVER shares her recipes. That's mostly because if people find out how simple they are, they will no longer be impressed with my culinary talents. But, because I love you, my bloggy friend, I decided that I would share with you. I can't guarantee it'll happen again, so pay attention. ;-)

Vegetable Lasagna

2 boxes no-boil lasagna noodles (I use Barilla) (you'll use about 1 1/2 boxes)

2 jars Alfredo sauce (any variety you like, I usually buy the one with mushrooms)

1 10oz box frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry

1 16oz container ricotta cheese

2 eggs

1 cup grated Parmesan, divided

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (or more to taste)

Salt and pepper, to taste

Optional: mushrooms (fresh or canned, I usually use canned. If you use fresh, you should saute them first), roasted red peppers (I use jarred)

In a large mixing bowl, mix spinach, ricotta cheese, eggs and 1/4 cup Parmesan. Add salt and pepper to taste. Mix well to incorporate all ingredients. In a 13x9 baking dish, place approximately 1/2 cup Alfredo sauce, or enough to coat the bottom evenly. Layer on lasagna noodles to cover bottom (my pan fits 3). Carefully spread 1/3 cheese filling over noodles, being sure to spread evenly. If using mushrooms and/or peppers, layer these over cheese filling. Sprinkle with Parmesan, to taste, and mozzarella (about 1/2 cup). Top with Alfredo sauce (about 1/2 cup, or enough to evenly coat filling). Top with another layer of noodles, and repeat filling layers and sauce. Repeat for a third layer, ending with noodles on top. Cover with remaining sauce, making sure to completely cover top layer of noodles with sauce. Top with remaining mozzarella cheese.

Cover dish with foil (it helps to spray it first with non-stick spray) and bake in a pre-heated 350 oven for 30 minutes. Remove foil and continue baking until top layer of mozzarella is golden and edges of lasagna are bubbling (about 15 minutes). Let sit at least 10 minutes before serving.

Ok, I'll have to come back for the others. Maybe I'll post one recipe a day, since it takes a while to type them out. (All the things I made for Easter are things that I don't have written out anywhere.) JLo, if you actually try making this, let me know how it turns out. This is a recipe I cobbled together on my own, so writing it out kinda forced me to think about actual measurements (just like when I sent it to you, Tiffany!) and I'm sure it's not exactly the same amounts I use, but you really can't screw it up. I mean, come on, it's essentially just pasta and cheese!! YUM!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

So far this morning...

I've made:
  • Vegetable Lasagna
  • Cheesy Potatoes
  • Brownies
  • Taffy Apple Salad
  • Cheddar Cheese Bread
  • Jello Eggs

Now, I just hope I don't forget to put any of it in the car to take to my parents' house.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

I wait all year for this...

Tonight, from 6-10 pm, I will be parked right here in front of my TV, watching this. It's just not Easter until we've watched The Ten Commandments. I can't believe I don't own this on DVD.

...yesterday, I made Stud drive home from my parents (where we went to pick up my nieces) and when we got home, he just pulled into the driveway and parked it. Normally, I back in the driveway, and pull into the garage, but he's not quite comfortable with that yet. No biggie, I had planned to get the kids started on the eggs, then run to the grocery store to get some flour. (I've been on a bread kick for a couple of days now, so there may be photos coming!) Now, you may recall it's been in the 80s for a couple of days now, so we had the sunroof and all the windows open when we were driving. When he parked, Stud asked if he should close the windows, and I said no, because I was planning to run right back out. However, I never did make it to the store, because after I set the kids up, they decided they were hungry, and then my sister came over, and the store was completely forgotten.

Well, flash forward to this morning. I woke up at about dawn, per usual, and I was watching the morning news programs in bed. I had opened my bedroom window last night when I went to bed because it was really warm in the house (hmmm...could all the baking have anything to do with that?) and so this morning, I actually awoke to the sound of birds chirping, and was enjoying the delightful breeze. A little while later, I thought I heard what sounded like raindrops, and thought, "well, that's good, we could use some rain." I wasn't surprised at all, because the weather forecast called for rain today.

I went into Stud's room to check his windows, since I knew they were opened, and I saw that rain was actually coming into his room, so I walked over to close them. Well, guess what was directly below his window. WIDE OPEN SUNROOF!!

I ran outside with my key and closed all the windows and the sunroof, but the inside of the car was already soaked. Now it's raining, so I can't exactly go out there to dry things off. I can't even sit IN the car to dry things, because my seats are soaked. That's just craptastic, isn't it?

This all happened over an hour ago, and I've been sitting here trying to figure out what I should do. I really need to get the store, and I really want to start drying the car. I'm afraid that no matter how many towels I put on my seat, when I get out at the store, my whole rearend will be wet, and I'll have to walk around the store looking like a 3 year old who had an accident. I suppose I could put some plastic over the seat, like a trash bag. Hmmm....I may be on to something here....

Friday, April 2, 2010

I think this kid is part Chia Pet...

This was his big, bald, beautiful head on the morning of the St. Baldrick's event. It actually looks longer than it was because he has such thick, dark hair. There was no hair sticking up, it was just like a 5 o'clock shadow.

Here's his head two weeks later. This is actually longer than the length his father gets his hair cut. How freakin' cute is my baby?!I had to take a bunch of silly pictures before I could get the cute one above. He's such a goof!
He was trying to look intimidating here. Yeah, not so much....

Oops, his Italian is showing....
This was his Godfather impersonation.
On a totally unrelated topic, I searched the internet early this morning for a recipe that resembled the Easter bread my grandma used to make us. This was the closest I found. Not nearly as pretty as what my grandma made. Actually, I don't have a clue what it's going to taste like. I skipped an entire line in the recipe and totally screwed up at one point, so I don't know how that's going to affect the taste/texture of the bread. (I was supposed to let it rise for 30 minutes, then brush it with egg white and sprinkle it with sugar, then bake it. Well, I did the egg white and sugar BEFORE I let it rise! CRAP!) It smells good, so maybe it'll taste good, too.