Archive for December, 2009

Dec 31 Thursday

2009

I turned 30.

Taught the importance of “order” to my kids.

Confessed my imperfections and still felt good about it the next morning.

Learned the hard knocks of life.

Made ample cookies for friends who needed them.

Learned a little more than I ever wanted to about mailing kids through the United States Postal Service.

Temporarily allowed my passive aggressive tendencies to take over and posted a(nother) rant.

Realized Cooper is too old to shower with me.

After three years with the old, I launched my new blog. Mwah.

Confessed my imperfections, again. Sort of regretted it the next morning.

FOUND PORN IN MY LAUNDRY ROOM.

Sent my oldest kid to kindergarten.

Shared the easiest cookie recipe EVER. Got the nicest notes in return. And a couple cookies.

Gave SuperHub a vasectomy for Valentine’s Day. No really. Then begged him for 8 months to let me write about it.

Spent hours making my favorite Halloween costume ever just to have 4 people tell me they saw it in a catalog. NO YOU DID NOT.

Talked about nuts at the dinner table. Not those nuts. The ones UNDER the table.

Survived H1N1 along with all three of my kids.

Had a moment.

Showed my boobs.

Spent too much time on Facebook.

Explained a bit more of WHY I am the crazy housewife that I am.

Found hope.

Note to You: Thank you to my readers who have made this a fantastic year.  You are most appreciated.  This blog has been an avenue to forge new friendships, rekindle old connections and gather strength through others experiences.  For all of these reasons, and for you, I am most grateful. May 2010 bring you more joy and happiness than you can handle. Cheers!

Peas & Carrots,

kt

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Dec 31 Thursday

Feasting & Merriment

Today marks the end of a decade and yet another year. It’s been an interesting one. New Year’s Eve is usually the last night to devour delectable food and drink fancy wine and beer without regret. On January 1st, we are going to be inundated with Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers and other weight loss commercials.

Thank God for DVR.

Need a little something to take to your New Year’s celebration? Oh honey, you know I have some ideas.

Let’s start with Crack Mix.

I will just go ahead and warn you that if you make a batch of this sticky wonder snack, you may live to regret it.

I was introduced to this recipe by a friend of mine, a saboteur in disguise, who brought over a huge bag of ridiculously delicious treats after Sammy was born.  I sat down in the rocker with a baggie of this mix and emerged 45 minutes later not knowing what had just happened to me. It was that good.

Since that day, I have made up every excuse to make Crack Mix. I used to call it Sweet & Salty Snack Mix but then a friend of ours, a cop, called it Crack Mix. It does put you in danger of becoming addicted which flags it for definition of a controlled substance. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Note to You: I make double batches for gatherings. It’s lotsa butta but spread out amongst the servings, it’s not as bad as you think. Avoid parking it on the couch with a bowl on your belly. It’s good now but it’s going to hurt later.

Crack Mix

1 Stick of butter (1/2 Cup)
3/4 Cup White corn syrup (Don’t use too much. If you don’t have enough, add a little honey. Yum.)
1 Cup Packed brown sugar
1 to 2 Cups of the nut of your choice: Pecans, cashews or almonds…Or all of the above.
1 (12 ounce) Package crispy corn and rice cereal: Crispy Hexagons, Rice, Corn or Wheat Chex. I mix them up.
Can also add mini pretzels, pretzel sticks or goldfish pretzels
2 teaspoons vanilla
Cinnamon, to taste

Hint:
A double batch is easier to do in a large disposable aluminum roasting pan. Wash well and re-use over and over.

Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Spray a large baking dish or roasting pan with non-stick cooking spray. Pour cereal, nuts and pretzels, in desired ratios, into your pan. In a saucepan, over medium high heat, mix butter, corn syrup, brown sugar and cinnamon. Stir until butter is melted. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Pour the caramel mixture over the cereal, spreading it evenly. Use a rubber spatula to slowly stir mixture to coat everything with caramel. You will perfect your stirring technique. Sometimes it’s easier to use two roasting pans, pouring one into the other. Eat any escape cereal bits. It’s imperative.

Bake for 60 minutes making sure to STIR EVERY 15 MINUTES. Remove the pan from the oven to do this, being sure to scrape the bottom of the pan and rotate the cereal. Then lick the spatula. Again, it’s imperative. Just get a new one or wash it well before you stir again. Remove from the oven and lay in a single layer to cool on foil or wax paper. Stir every 15 minutes until cool to avoid the mixture hardening into a giant lump. Store in an airtight container and shake well before serving. You can make it a day ahead, but you will probably have to hide it.

Hint: Since it’s cold and flu season, serve in Dixie Cups or with a scoop. The less germy hands in the mixture, the less illness everyone takes home.

Keep scrolling…More recipes below!

Crackity crack crack crack!

This next recipe has been a favorite of ours for the last couple years. The problem is, I always start to take photos while making it and never get the final product. My hands are all distracted with shoveling the dip into my mouth as fast as possible on a blue corn tortilla chip. I have yet to clear 2 minutes out of the oven, without a crowd of people descending upon the dish making nom nom nom sounds as it quickly disappears. Christmas Eve this year I busted one of Matt’s family members licking the dish clean. He turned purple and I felt like a rock star.

Hot Creamy Buffalo Chicken Dip

(It’s not fancy, it’s just good.)

2-3 Cups cooked chicken – You know I am a fan of poaching chicken! Cool and chop into bite size pieces. (You can also buy it already cooked and cut up.)
1 Package cream cheese (1/3 less fat works a-OK) room temperature
2 Cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 Cup ranch dressing
1/4 – 1/2 Cup hot sauce or buffalo sauce – (Don’t be brave. I use 1/4 Frank’s Red Hot Sauce…HOT HOT HOT…and 1/4 ish of a mild Buffalo sauce.)

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Chop your chicken. Stir remaining ingredients until mixed well and add the chicken. Spoon into a 9 x 13 baking dish and bake until bubbly. Usually about 20 minutes. Serve with blue corn (or any) tortilla chips, celery or crackers. Seriously, this is good. GOOD. It makes me utter sayings like “Good shit Maynard“.

I apologize, this is all you get.

If you are in a pickle and don’t have time to go to the store, you could always throw a jar of fruit salsa over a brick of cream cheese, on a fancy plate, and serve with crackers or chips.

Or make Mini Pigs in a Turtleneck. Or cheese and crackers.

You could always slice some fruit from your fruit drawer and whip up a creamy fruit dip.

Creamy Fruit Dip

Apples
Grapes
Berries
Any fruit, bite sized pieces
1 Package cream cheese, room temperature
1 Jar Marshmallow Fluff
Splash of OJ if you have some

Mix cream cheese and fluff with a hand mixer until creamy. Serve in a cute bowl surrounded by finger food fruit.

Hint: It is my belief that one should have 2 jars of Marshmallow Fluff in your pantry at all times. You just wait. Buy two jars and you will find a reason to make this dip sooner than later. Or just eat it with peanut butter on Fluffer Nutter sandwiches for a decadent lunch.

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Dec 29 Tuesday

Warning: Unsolicited advice detected within 3 feet

I find myself spewing unsolicited parenting advice at the oddest moments. Usually it’s to a friend in the middle of an aisle at Target or at a parent whom I have just met.  It’s unexplainable, but in these moments I have a surge of “I need to tell you this right now” verbiage which spews out of my mouth and right on to my victim’s lap.

As of late, it usually includes these latest bullet points:

♥ You cannot spoil a baby by holding it. PICK UP YOUR NEW BABY IF YOU WANT TO. Sleep habits don’t form until 3 months but make sure you don’t fall into a habit before they do. Responding to their cries builds trust.

♥ Forget top sheets. They are useless in a child’s bed. Save them for building forts or save yourself some money and buy only fitted sheets.

♥ Store brand acetaminophen is the same as Tylenol. Same goes for ibuprofen and Motrin. Same goes for diapers. Not so for wipes. Pampers makes the best wipes. By “best” I mean they get shit cleaned up quickly. Literally.

♥ Yes, my tutu wearing, sparkle adorned, 4 year old blond hair, blue eyed girl, who is also belting out her best made up song at the top of her lungs, is SO cute and pretty. If you could also tell her how smart, funny and kind she is that would be great. Mmmmkay, thanks.

♥ Some of the best gifts you can give your children are good self esteem, the love of reading, healthy eating habits and an ability to entertain themselves.

♥ The best place to buy kid’s toothbrushes is the Dollar Store.  A two pack sets you back $1. Yup.

You can literally vaccinate children from poor self esteem by setting an example of loving and accepting yourself. None of this “I’m fat”, “I’m ugly” or “I’m on a diet” talk in front of kids. The same goes for how you talk about people outside the car when you are inside the car.

♥ Any parent, in-laws, friends and siblings can have an OPINION on how you choose to care for your child. But only YOU have the CHOICE. If anyone tries to judge you in a moment, slap them upside the head. But, remember to show the same graciousness when you are standing on the other side of the fence.

♥ Toddler moist bathroom wipes are the single most essential item to have in your home once your children are potty trained.

♥ Ignore unsolicited advice. Especially from a crazy mom of three, in pigtails, in the middle of the baby food aisle. Or on her blog.

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Dec 29 Tuesday

Alphabutt

This is the favorite song right now at our house. I warn you, it is chalked full of potty talk. All the same, it’s funny, addicting and catchy enough to leave me bursting into song at the most random of times.

You can download the album here or just the Alphabutt song for $.89.

Alphabutt by Kimya Dawson
(Video above made by Krystal Guerra)

A is for apple
B is for butt
C is for cat butt
D for doo doo
E is for elephant doo doo
F is for fart
G is for gorilla fart
H is for huge gorilla fart
I is for I-ball (eyeball)
J is for jammies
K is for kid fart
L is for lotta loud farts
M is for monkey butt
N is for saying night-night to me go at naptime
O is for oh
P is for panda peeing and pooping in her potty while papa plays peek-a-boo
Q is for Q-Bert
R is for robotic monkey who’s gonna take over the world
S is for stinky
T is for turd
U is uh-oh
V is for flying vee
W is for wee-wee
X is for X-zuckamundoe
Y is for yucky and yummy and you
And Z is for farts that smell like the zoo

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Dec 27 Sunday

It’s that time of year…No, the other time.

I have smoothly shaven legs and cute toenails. My good socks are laid out along with my nice (but not slutty) bra. Before I leave the house, I will shower (alone), style my hair and put on full make-up.

This is all subject to the moods and neediness factor of the kiddos.

Nope, I am not going on a date with SuperHub. I am going to my annual exam. That is right folks, I get more coiffed and fancy for my OB than I do for my husband. When there is unflattering lighting, uncomfortable metal objects and paper clothing involved, a girl has to go to extreme measures to make herself feel decent.

It is necessary. Once I am done I will feel like I have accomplished something. Because of my family history with breast cancer, I started getting mammograms at age 28. That means I get my Reginald Von Hoobie Doobies squished to pancakes. It’s not bad. It hurts but it’s quick. Kind of like when someone stomps on your toe.

There are reasons we women spend ridiculous amounts of money to pamper ourselves. WE DESERVE IT. WE HAVE TO SCOOTCH OUR BARE BOTTOMS TO THE EDGE OF A TABLE.

That fact alone erases any guilt I have for insisting on only using Aveda products year round.

Our bodies are like fancy sports cars. You need to maintain them, take good care of all the parts. Or when things break down, you are going to pay A LOT of money to get new ones.

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Dec 26 Saturday

My New Year’s resolution will be to NOT stand on a scale.

We have been spoiled rotten lately with ample amounts of insanely good (and rich) food. Tis the season. I threw off my digestive system today and ate a single raw carrot. Then I decided I should eat another. That time I dipped it in sour cream cheesy taco dip. I didn’t want to put my body into shock with withdrawal.

I think all the cream cheese and butter has gone to my head.

While setting up the Wii that Santa brought to our house, I was creating my Mii (a character you create in your likeness). It asks you who created each Mii at the end of the process. One button said “Reenter”. All puzzled I asked SuperHub “Who is Reenter?”

“RE-Enter!” He laughed. “Wow.”

He didn’t laugh very long.  After the kids went to bed he and I played a friendly game of Smarty Pants Trivia. His question was “What color shoes are acceptable to wear with a women’s black pant suit with a black belt?”

He quickly answered brown. BROWN.

I about fell off the couch. Have I failed him? After 13 years together he thinks that BROWN shoes are OK to wear with black pants?

No, it’s the cream cheese and butter affects on the brain. We are going to detox. As soon as the leftover lemon cheesecake, taco dip, mashed potatoes, ham, white chocolate covered pretzels and cookie plates are gone.

Note to You: Three white chocolate covered pretzels were consumed in the making the post.

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Dec 24 Thursday

Merry Merry!

Merry Merry Christmas!

Today is a day of expressions of love, too many presents  and way too much food.
It’s the most wonderful day of the year.

(In my humble opinion.)

Merry Christmas to you and yours!
May your holiday be filled ample joy and oodles of sweets!

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Dec 23 Wednesday

Ice Cream Tuesday

Monday was Maddy’s 4th birthday. Lucky for her, she got FOUR whole days to celebrate this year. Yesterday, Matt and the kids packed into the PT Cruiser and came to pick me up at the airport.

At Maddy’s request, we went immediately to IHOP for pancakes.

After her chocolate chocolate chip smiley face pancake, Maddy got a huge ice cream sundae from our server.

“Isn’t that nice, you get an ice cream sundae for your birthday!” I said as she dove face first into the whipped cream topping.

Cooper quickly replied “It’s not an ice cream sundae Mom, it’s an ice cream TUESDAY!”

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Dec 23 Wednesday

Jack Jack the Super Kid

To keep up to date on Jack and his family, visit Jack’s website! Be sure to sign his guest book, they love to read well wishes to Jack. Words are powerful and are capable of lifting spirits in the darkest of moments. Plus, who doesn’t giggle at a poopy tooter butt joke?

Here is a snap shot I took of my beautiful sister Erin and Jack just before he was released from the hospital on Monday. Thanks to some connections, his parents were able to get Santa Claus to come to his house tonight. Lucky kid. He goes back to the hospital Friday (Christmas Day) for a dose of chemo, a 2nd spinal tap and bone marrow extraction.

No kid should have to go through that on Christmas.

This Christmas is a little different for our family. Our parents will remain in Texas and my brother and wife will celebrate with us. Oddly enough, even though we are going to be apart for the first Christmas in our lifetimes, our entire family is closer than ever.

Count your blessings! They are abundant.

Mama and Jack

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Dec 21 Monday

Excuse yourself and whistle a tune…

When you are the only one within four rows on a nearly empty plane, and you fart, everyone knows who was responsible.

It’s true.

I am just going to go ahead and blame two days of Mexican food and not enough sleep.

I have arrived in Texas to support my family and my time to write will be spotty the next couple days.

SuperHub is sure to have a gem or two from his single parenting experience.

Good luck Schmoopie, give ’em hell.

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