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2 kids. Memories of Wolf and Boo. Many dear friends. Three siblings. Two parents. Samarra the crazy dog. The Player and Pi the Cat. I love you all!

Monday, May 31, 2010

National Salad Month


Did you know that May is National Salad Month?  Me neither, until I didn't know what to write about for my blog and so in desparation went to my "bizarre and unusual holiday" website where I sometimes get ideas for my blog.   Is that cheating?

Well, May is also National Hamburger Month!  So my daughter who once wanted her middle name to be Hamburger, and I, made a salad with fresh spinach, radishes (from my share of Henry's farm that I got last week) and cauliflower.  Sierra is actually old enough to cut with a sharp knife.  I hope.  She did a great job on the radishes, that's for sure.

Our salad turned out tasting pretty healthy and yummy.  It made Sierra and I happy to eat something that we made together in the kitchen.





June is, among other things, National Accordion Awareness Month.  Can you believe it?  Accordions get a whole month, and hummus still doesn't have a single day to celebrate it.  Some things are just plain wrong.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Back Yard Campout







Last night we slept out in the tent!   Even Wolf slept in the tent with us.  No one snored.  No one had to pee in the middle of the night.  No neighborhood dogs went crazy barking.  A choir of birds woke me up about...?  who knows?  It was really really early, though.  I looked up through the screen window roof at the maple tree and listened to them.  Wondering why they sing so loudly and insistently for that hour before dawn then suddenly go quiet.  I guess it must be Bird Church.  Which is made up entirely of hymns until it ends with a silent prayer.

We had our little camping pads, well, Jeremiah and I did.  Sierra had to sleep on her old kindergarten mat.  Everyone was comfy.  We had extra blankets in case it got chilly and it did.  Jeremiah brought out what he called an "emergency kit."  I didn't look at it until this morning.  It had his baseball schedule, a spiral notebook, and a dictionary.  I asked him what kind of emergency he'd been thinking about.  He replied, "In case someone says a word I don't know I can look it up."  Oh. 

We did go to the pool yesterday afternoon.  The pool was packed.  It seemed like everyone in McLean County was there.  The new water slides were open.  Jeremiah and Sierra went down one of them together in a double-inner-tube.  There was live country music.  There was hot hot sun and cool water.  The line for refreshments was a mile long, so after we left the pool we went to the drive through at Micky D's instead.  Can you say chocolate milkshake for momma?

Then we came home and watched the Cubs whip those Cardinals. Ha. Hahaha.   HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHHA!!!  I also took a nap in the 4th inning.  It's tradition!

Later Jeremiah wanted to play some backyard baseball.  He didn't like it when I took time to snap a photo of him first.



He'll get over it.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Friday Night Lights in the Sky

Friday was the kid's first day of summer vacation. It started out in a bit of a rush for the 3 of us because I had to be somewhere on the other side of town at 8:30 and had to take them to their gymnastics day camp even further on the other side of town before that. So instead of a leisurely get up and take your time first day of vacation, we were bustling around getting fed, dressed, lunches packed, and out the door earlier than usual. That ain't right!


Then I had a heck of a day. Got eaten by fleas at my first stop of the day.. a person with two cats, two-too-many cats. Ick. My work day didn't get worse after that, just longer.

Thank goodness today is MY first day of a 10-day vacation. We're gonna hit the pool this afternoon!

But back to yesterday. Francisco left early yesterday morning for a short trip to Ecuador to see his mom. He called in the late afternoon and said he was in Miami, had been on the runway (in the airplane) ready to take off, when they cancelled the flight. Both major airports in Ecuador and one in Peru were closed due to volcanic ash, from Tungurahua, (pronounced Tune-Goo-Rah-Wha) which is the volcano near Francisco's home town, Baños.

Francisco asked if I would look online for more information about the volcano. So Jeremiah and I got online and googled the newspaper website for Quito. The head line read, in Spanish, “Dos poblaciones de Baños evacuados...” which should translate as “Two neighborhoods of Baños evacuated...” Jeremiah saw a “TRANSLATE” button at the top of the newspaper's website, so we clicked on that thinking Jeremiah could then read the article in English. But the headline translated as

Two Bathroom Populations Evacuated...

So we decided the article in English might not be, well, very reliable.

We called Francisco in Miami and shared that little tidbit with him, which did make him laugh for probably the first time since being on that runway earlier...

LATER that night, the kids and I decided it would be great to lay out on the trampoline and look up at the stars. We did and then we were so comfy the kids went and got blankets and pillows. We even thought about sleeping there, until the neighbor's dog started barking at us, and then Wolf started barking to go inside. So we did what Wolf told us.  We went inside and got in bed and went to sleep where Wolf knows we belong.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Let the Games Begin!

Jeremiah's first baseball game of the year was Thursday.  His team lost by one run.  He got thrown out at first base twice, walked once, and got a blooper single.  He played shortstop:



third base (no photo at this position) and catcher:


Here he is at bat: 


Here he is on deck:
He is just the picture of Total Cute Boyness, doncha think?



And here is another boy, a teammate's little brother, who may be the world's youngest Cubs fan:

Or is he just using my hat to help get those first teeth in?




The weather was spectacular.  After the game we made chocolate chip cookies, the pre-mixed and cut kind, just put 'em on the cookie sheet and bake.  Sierra declared I was an excellent baker when she ate one!  It's gonna be a good summer.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

My Breath and A Skunk

On Wednesday I discovered that the Bloomington Fire Department has some hunky-dorey paramedics.  I met 3 of them, long story, not worth telling, and then I was sorry for all that garlic I had eaten on Tuesday.  For that reason, and that reason only, I didn't pretend to pass out and need mouth-to-mouth.  I will wait until a better breath day.   But personally, I'm thinking, "Who needs eHarmony.com when we have 911?"

Speaking of better breath, and also of my daughter who is very good about brushing her teeth but not so good about cleaning anything up, here is what her toothpaste tube looks like after she uses it:


Okay, that's bad enough, but then the other night she said, "Mom, I am going to use grownup toothpaste now.  It's going to make my teeth really really white!"  And she did.



And while we are on the subject of Sierra, let's get an update on the Sammy the Skunk situation.  As you know, Sierra is to turn Sammy in to Miss A on the last day of school.  Which is today, Thursday.  But we are about to pull the old bait-and-switch trick.  Here is Sammy's evil twin Samuel:


Samuel is clean, still has his tags on, and I'm sure his breath smells really good.  He's sure to be loved by another first grader next year.   I know this is the opposite of the usual bait-and-switch schemes.  And I'm pretty sure Miss A won't be fooled but she'll pretend to be. 

And speaking of being fooled, do you think the paramedics would know if I didn't really need mouth-to-mouth?  That I just wanted it a lot?  There may only be one way to find out. 

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Thoughts on Garlic

Tuesday nights are the nights that my neighbors Shannon and Joe, and I, go to Henry's CSA to pick up our share of Henry's organic produce for the next 20-some weeks.    It's like a pre-paid Farmer's Market.

This was the first week.  Shannon and her daughter and I drove to the parking lot of the Unitarian Church, got our names checked off the list of members, got out Henry's CSA Cookbooks, and headed to the produce laid out for us to pick up.  We were allowed:  2 bags of spinach (easy to split), rhubarb (I gave it to Shannon since it wasn't much and I can get some from Francisco's clients that have a field of rhubarb they never use), a head of lettuce (we split it), radishes (I took those for Sierra), chives, and...Green Garlic.

I've never had green garlic before,  It looks more like humongous scallions.  I used a recipe from Henry's website to make Green Garlic Pesto.  Chopped up green garlic stalks, grated fresh parmesan, olive oil, water, salt, pepper, walnuts,  Fire up that food processor and have at it.

Making the pesto, I felt so, well...cultured...that I decided I should be playing some cool jazz on the radio.  But when I went to the radio, I put the Cubs game on instead.  The devil made me do it.

So, the pesto looks beautiful, smells good, and tastes like GARLIC pesto.  Get it? 

But it's really, really good.

So, then I got curious about garlic.  I've heard it cures colds, keeps away vampires, and so on.  But a quick perusal of medical websites shows that REAL scientific studies don't give any of those stories any credibility.  Ok, they don't even mention vampires, but they do talk about colds, preventing atherosclerosis, and so on.    No Evidence.

But I have a theory.  And yes, I'm gonna tell you what it is.

If you eat garlic, especially this garlic pesto I just made, every day...no one will get close enough to give you a cold.  SO it might just be legit.  Also this works well as birth control, if this is of interest to any of my Gentle Readers.

Next I made a great salad dressing with the chives.  But that's another story for another day.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

New Shampoo!

After whining several times in this blog about how my hair increases in size in direct relation to the humidity, I learned something new.  A new word.  Volumizing.  You may ask, how did you learn this word?  Well, the answer is, I read it.  On my shampoo bottle.  In the shower.  Monday morning.

Volumizing?  I asked myself.  Self, I said, you don't need no stinkin' volumizing now that it's summertime!  What were you thinking, self?  I said.  You need something else.

Then I found a sample of something called CALM shampoo in the shower caddy, and tried it.   Yes, much better.

But later when I went shopping to try to find CALM shampoo, I couldn't find it.  I did not feel calm right then.  I felt like my emotions were getting volumized.  But at the last minute, before I would have been asked to leave the store through the back door, I found something called "None of Your Frizzness" shampoo.  I bought that right up!  And soon I'll have a hair status report on how that sassy-named shampoo did with my bad-ass summertime hair.

Well, hair rebellion and sweating-like-a-pig aside, I'm ready for summer.  

Not that it's any of your frizzness!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Hot Fun in the Almost-Summer TIme

Sunday was HOT and HUMID.  I mean, did ANYONE see my hair?  Or rather, did anyone NOT see my hair!  Whew!

The kids decided to paint Sunday afternoon.  We started to set up out on ye olde decke, but it was too too hot.  So they moved into the garage, where not only was it cooler but I could set up a box fan to keep the air moving.  Painting now that they are old enough not to need 2 adults per child to supervise them is a lot more fun, for me anyway.  I set them up, turned on the fan, and went inside to watch the Cubs game.  But first, of course, I took a picture of the artists in action.


Yes, Sierra IS wearing something that looks like a loin cloth.  You know those artists!

Later Jeremiah joined me, but Sierra decided it was Sprinkler Time.

Oh to be eight again!

Just swinging in the sprinkler got boring after about 2 minutes, so she devised a Swinging Sprinkler Weapons System.



After a while she finally convinced big brother to tear himself away from the game, put on his swimsuit, and join the fun.   They put the sprinkler under the trampoline:



Life IS a bowl of cherries!



After about 50 tries and a quick doubling of my water bill, Jeremiah landed a front flip on his feet.  No mean feat on a wet trampoline!

Sierra has some flip action going-on too.

Next weekend the town's pools will open, and Jeremiah says THIS is the year he will learn to do a flip off the diving board.  I think this may be the year I start closing my eyes most of the time we are at the pool.


Sunday, May 23, 2010

A Dog and his Boy

Jeremiah suggested I write about Wolf today.  I'm not really sure what there is about Wolf that my Gentle Readers don't already know.  Since he is featured frequently in my blog.  Jeremiah suggested I still should be able to come up with at least 3 paragraphs about Wolf.  Jeremiah sometimes sounds a little bit like a teacher when he talks, doesn't he?

In fact, one time Jeremiah was walking Wolf, and Wolf kept pulling hard on the leash.  Jeremiah stopped, which is what we do so that Wolf will not keep pulling on the leash.  Usually it works, but this time Wolf kept pulling and pulling.  Then Jeremiah said, in a calm "teacher" voice,  "Wolf, we can just stand here all day if you keep pulling, but I don't think you really want to do that, do you?"  Like I said...

Jeremiah is giving me a A on my blog, he says.  I'm sure he thinks that will give him some "brownie points" for the day.  He's probably right.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Fear

I didn't mean for my blog to scare people yesterday.

But for gosh sake's, they were just googley-eye glasses and my kids and me.  And the dog.

Really scary things, to me, include:
1.  Dracula, the book
2.  Bad turbulence on an airplane
3.  Scary movies with lines like "I know who you are and I saw what you did..."
4.  Goldman-Sachs
5.  People who take the Bible literally (really sorry, again)
6.  Rod Blagojevich as Governor of my state  (bad flashback..again, I NEVER voted for him)
7.  Being Hispanic in Arizona.
8.  Cudjo.
9.  Donald Trump's hairpiece.
and
10.  Tornado sirens

Add to this list, the idea of my kids becoming teenagers.

So -- photos of people in creepy glasses, not on my list.  Sorry if they are on yours.  Sorry if you have nightmares tonight in which Everything That Rises Must Wear Scary Glasses. 

On to things that calm me when I am afraid:

1.  My kids since they are still little and sometimes I have to be calm for them
2.  My dog just because.
3.  Praying in the form of hollering for God to help me (especially if I am being afraid of tornadoes.)
4.  A basement (especially if I am being afraid of tornadoes)
5.  Comfort food like popcorn
6.  Books, if they are not Dracula or contain stories by Flannery O'Connor.
7.  Songs, old hymns and classic rock songs from the 60's and 70's.  Weird I know.  But who could feel afraid when singing..."Let It Be" or "In the Garden"
8.  A nice deep breath
9.  Hummus (ha, you knew it would be here somewhere)
10.  A nice deep breath followed by eating popcorn in the basement with the kids and the dog.

Add to the list the idea that once my kids are teenagers that won't last forever.

SO, life is good, sometimes challenging, but what do we have to fear but fear itself?  And me in googley-eye glasses?

Friday, May 21, 2010

A New Way of Looking at Things

For Sierra's birthday party, the goody bags contained some candy, a nice mechanical pencil, and some googley-eye glasses.  Somehow none of the extra candy or pencils found their way from Francisco's house to my house, but a pair of googley-eye glasses did.  And Thursday night we all tried them on.  The results were, well, frightening.  First Jeremiah donned them:





Then Sierra.



Jeremiah was so frightened of how my face looked that he took this picture first:

Finally he got it right:


There was a piece on NPR this week about Allen Ginzburg, the beat poet. He apparently was also quiet an accomplished photographer. One bit of advice he got from another photographer was to include the hands in the photo when shooting a portrait. So I put my hands in the picture. Does it make you want to Howl? Hahahaha.


Allen Ginzburg, the beat poet, was also famous for, get this, being a connoisseur of soups. That's right. Can you really get famous for that? If so, I may be famous yet for my connoisseurness of hummus. Or my making-up-of words. Or my photography. Or I may never be famous. Yeah, that sounds about right.


 Fianlly, we put the glasses on Wolf. 


  The SPCA will be coming to talk to me soon, I'm sure.

Have a great day, and try to see things just a little differently today!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

I Got Off Work Early

Wednesday afternoon the weather was perfectly fabulously fantastic!  Warm and sunny, slight breeze, not hot or cold.  I was supposed to go to a movie in the evening Wednesday with my friend Shamelle.  But I called her at 1:00 pm when I realized I'd be done with work early, because she has the summer off from her teaching/tutoring job.  And instead of a movie in the evening we went for a walk at Parklands in the afternoon.
Here's my favorite tree along the Mackinaw in the part of Parklands I always seem to go to for a walk.

If you've been there you know that tree.  You see it and you think "I'd like to climb out on that limb.  But I'm not 17 and think I'm immortal anymore so I won't."  But the next time you see it you think the same danged thing.  Cause you're still alive and who could resist that branch lazily beckoning the water below?

The river, the Mackinaw of course, was running high from the weekend's rains.  There was enough breeze that the sound of the wind blocked out any other noises.  The wildflowers were rampant.  Here are a few of the flowers we saw:

Spiderwort.
Shooting star.

Columbine.

False Solomon's Seal.
Fleabane.

I looked up all the scientific names but none of them were "porn-star" worthy.  So, I'm not putting them in here.  'Cause I'm all about the star value.

We also some some wildlife.  A few little brown snakes.  Green shiny beetles.  A beautiful bright-blue little bird we couldn't identify.  A woodpecker eating a worm.  And a ham.  Well, it looked like a ham from across the river.  It looked like a ham staked to a little table.   But wild ham are rare in those woods.  So we were probably mistaken.
Shamelle and I went to Schnucks after our lengthy walk.  For my Gentle Readers who do not live in Bloomington-Normal, that's our uppity-scale grocery store here in town.   Seeing that possibly-a-ham made me hungry!   We bought some hummus, of course, and some olives that were so garlicky you should not eat them within one week of having anything to do with smooching.  (Unless you think you might be called upon to smooch someone so boring you would fall asleep on your date and you don't care.)  And some crackers and  Pink Lady apples. 

I also bought a 12-pack of Caffeine Free Diet Coke, which Shamelle did point out is Not Healthy.  I laughed and read the ingredients to her outloud.  Water is number one!  SO how can it be bad?  Also "Natural Flavors"  is like, well, next to last in the list.  I think I made my case, but she remained Unconvinced.

We ate the yummy food on her covered porch, very nice, and I drank a coke and didn't offer her one.  I'm pretty sure she was relieved about that.  I took the extra hummus and left her the extra olives.  Even though she's a lot more likely to smooch someone in the next week than I am!

Just because it's so beautiful there, here's another photo for your visual enjoyment:

You Are Welcome!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Signs of Summer

One sign of summer here in the midwest is that humidity that gives my hair (1) three times it's normal volume and (2) free will.  Yes, my hair is actually used by the Weather Channel to verify that their barometers are working properly.  In exchange for this valuable information I get the Weather Channel free with my Basic Cable package.

What?  You do too?  Hey, wait a minute.  That ain't right!

Another sign of summer THIS year in Normal is that professional baseball is just around the corner.  Our very own unaffiliated minor league baseball team, the Cornbelters, open the season on June 1st.  Unfortunately I have an NCC Steering Committee Meeting that night, so won't be able to go to this monumental event.  I've seen pictures of the mascot, Corny.  Corny's hair looks like mine will when I'm 87 and it thins out a lot but still blows up in the humidity and demonstrates the property of Entropy for all to see and enjoy.

Of course the garden is a sign summer is on it's way.  Right now the best looking plants in my garden are the one bleeding heart plant that did not get creamed by a soccer ball this spring, AND a wildflower that took root in the middle of my petunia patch.  I had to look it up in my handy dandy "National Audubon Society Field Guide to Wildflowers Eastern Region" book.  The plant is called a Star Chickweed, scientific name "stellaria pubera" and one interesting feature of the flower is that it looks like it has 10 tiny white petals but upon closer examination it has only 5 petals that are each split into 2 sections.  It grows best on rocky slopes.  Yup, rocky is a good description for that part of my garden. 

Stellaria Pubera sounds like a good porn star name.



Here is a photo of some really beautiful star chickweed, not the volunteer plant in my garden, which is a littler more scraggly looking than this one.  Kind of like Corny's hair.

Then of course, school will be out the middle of next week.  My kids will spend 3 days at a gymnastics day camp, then have a week of vacation with me.  We'll be going to Tennessee to see Grandma and Grandad for much of that week.  Then we come back to Normal and they will be at Fairview Day Camp, the Normal Parks and Recreation program for the next nine weeks.  They will swim almost everyday.  They'll turn brown as beautiful berries and that, of course, if the surest sign of summer.

Except for the lightening bugs, which I hope will make an appearance very very soon.



Tuesday, May 18, 2010

It's My Mom's (not Theodore's) Birthday

In honor of my mom, Ellen, not Theodore, I dedicate today's blog to her.

Yup, that's right, forgot to send a present. 

I thought I would write a humorous piece about our trip to Alaska, but that's kind of old news, since we took it in 1996.  And then I thought I'd put some pictures of a donkey pulling a cart full of flowers on here for her, but couldn't find a photo of that ANYWHERE on the web.  I wanted to do that so she could see how cute that idea of a donkey cart with flowers REALLY was.  Even if it was made of crappy plastic.

She doesn't really like hummus, so the picture of the Yet Newer Kind of Exciting Hummus I found on Monday won't really be her cup of tea.  But look! 


It's Greek Olive Hummus.  I'd share some with her if she liked hummus and wanted some.  But I think she'd rather chew on a plastic donkey cart than eat this, though she's too nice to say so.

I was thinking about my mom yesterday morning when the Weather Channel showed video of a woman in Oklahoma who drove around a barricade then got stuck in water and it took four police/fire people to rescue her.  After they rescued her they arrested her for driving around the barricade.  So, I was just thinking, you know, glad my mom's never been arrested for THAT.  Or anything else, of course. What else says love like a Hallmark card that says "Glad that wasn't you getting hauled away, Mom!"

I think I have a future in the greeting card business.

I should have gotten my mom a gift, I know.  She and my dad have already given me my birthday gift this year and my birthday isn't even until October.  They gave me 5/7 of a patio table!  My dad assembled the entire table, thank goodness, because I know I wouldn't be able to put the last 2/7 of it together myself.  (It's the same table in yesterday's blog with the plants on it.)

I think if I go on long enough here she'll laugh so hard she won't notice I didn't send a card, either. 

I guess I'll have to take the gift AND card with me when I travel to Tennessee in June. Hey that's only 2 weeks away.  I'd better get shopping!

I love you mom!  Happy happy birthday.  I'll be calling (collect) later!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Noodles and Other Miracles

Saturday morning Jeremiah was listening to music on my iPod.  He pulled one earplug out and asked, "Mom, what does 'noodle-ated' mean?"
Huh?

"You know, in Werewolves of London, 'little old lady got noodle-ated late last night,'..."

Oh, honey, that's "mutilated" not "noodle-ated."  Like attacked and hurt by the werewolf.

"Oh, ok, mom,  thanks..."

Later that same day, Sierra and I were watching Jeremiah's baseball practice.  It was drizzling and we were sitting in the front seat of the car, and she announced that Sam the Skunk has a girlfriend and that they are old enough to kiss.  Sam's girlfriend's name is Noodles, because of her curly hair.

Well, that's interesting.

Jeremiah had a good practice, and I didn't ask how old Sam the Skunk and Noodles are, because I didn't want to know how old stuffed animals have to be to kiss.  Call me old fashioned.

The whole weekend seemed suffused with little miracles.  Probably just because I was in a good mood.  But on Sunday in church we reflected on what is sacred to us.  And the answer for myself and many others seemed to be related to the science of life itself, or even just the very existence of life in this universe.  "We are stardust, we are golden" in the lyrics of another song.  And then I gardened:



These are the plants I bought with the kids Sunday afternoon, who PROMISED to help me plant them...until they saw the neighbor kids out playing when we arrived home from Casey's Garden Store with these beauties.  They are all planted now (the plants, not the kids) in a small vegetable garden along the south fence, around the deck in flower beds, and in a pot (red petunias for Sierra.)

Then I soaked my morning glory seeds.  Every year I plant morning glories.  I adore them.  To me, the great miracle of the universe is that you can take these:



plus this:



and by August you get this:


times about 500.


And another gardening miracle this year is that my garden is planted before my neighbor has his planted.  Gary is a great neighbor who is kind of obsessed with his yard and garden.  He always has a fabulous vegetable garden in before everyone else and seems to be harvesting before I've even turned over any dirt.  But this year Gary has a new girlfriend.  So his garden looks like this today, while mine is actually planted:



And what's great is, we are both smiling about that!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

My Farmer's Market is not Your Farmer's Market

The first downtown Bloomington Farmer's Market of 2010 was yesterday.  I had to talk the kids into going to it, because there are no video games, water slides, or Disney Channel at the market.  The kind of thing that makes it so great for grownups!  I succeeded in talking them into it mostly because they couldn't remember exactly what it was.  So, then I felt so excited, I decided we should take Wolf.

It was a good idea.  He's a friendly dog.  Nice with children.  Nice with people.  I could see myself strolling through the booths with Wolf on the leash getting petted and admired by all, while the kids ran around and got excited about organic carrots.  But I forgot something. 

Wolf is a boy dog.  Boy dogs have to pee on everything they haven't peed on in the last 15 minutes.  So, as soon as we parked the car and got out, Wolf started trying to pee.  I kept him away from the people having breakfast on the sidewalk in front of Kelly's, from the planters on Center Street, and the stoplights.

Then we crossed Washington to get to the courthouse square, and he leapt up onto the grass, where he could pee and pee and pee.

Wolf loved the Farmer's Market.  He got to sniff some new dogs, and pee on all four sides of the courthouse lawn.  I didn't get to look at a single booth.  The kids were cold and whiny and had no interest in anything except getting back to the car.

After that fiasco, we went to Target.  The kids both got new swimsuits and Sierra got some summer clothes that will actually fit her.

Wolf stayed in the car.

Note:  no organic vegetables were harmed in the making of this blog entry.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Really really sorry

Kathleen's blog yesterday asked what books we have thrown against the wall.  I answered, "Clandestine in Chile, the Adventures of Miguel Littin" - not because I didn't like the book, but once I was mad about something else while I was reading it, and it was handy, and, well, I'm Irish.  So I threw it and then felt bad because it wasn't Gabriel Garcia Marquez's fault I was mad.

Then I decided to google GGM and found this very funny quote:

"Fiction was invented the day Jonah arrived home and told his wife that he was three days late because he had been swallowed by a whale."

If you take the Bible literally you won't like that quote.  But if you take the Bible literally you probably aren't reading this blog.  And if you do take the Bible literally and you read this blog, you're probably horrified.  Sorry.

I wouldn't think that quote was funny if I had a philandering spouse, either.  So if you have one of those...Really sorry.

If you read this blog and expect something intelligent and insightful today...Really really sorry.

If you found this blog by accident and thought it would be about hummus, sorry, but look back at yesterday's blog.  Sometimes it is about hummus.  But not every day.  Kinda sorry.

I'm laughing now when I write the word...sorry.  It's such a pathetic-looking word.  Now it even looks funny to me on the page.  Just look at it...hahahaha.

So...nevermind.

Friday, May 14, 2010

A New Product!


Today, grocery shopping, I found a brand new kind of hummus:


Spinach and Artichoke.  Very grown up!  Here's how it looks without the lid:


I have to confess, I thought it might be too sophisticated for my tastes, but I really wanted to try it.



I like it !  And apparently, so will Wolf someday if I ever forget and leave it on the table. 

Thursday, May 13, 2010

AJB and the SSS


Part One:  AJB  (American Junior Baseball).
The first official practice of Jeremiah's baseball season was last night. He wore his team uniform, and last year's baseball shoes which miraculously still fit. I have to confess, I think he is just darned cute with his curls coming up under his cap now:



Yes, he IS wearing socks that don't match. 




I should point out that I am biased, just a little, but I think he's going to be a fine baseball player this year.  It's the first year that the kids pitch, so the games will be longer and more painful to watch.  Keep that in mind when I invite you to one of his games later this summer.  It's okay to say you have to wash your hair, I understand.  But when he's famous, you'll be sorry if you can't say, "I saw him back when!"



Part Two:  The Shantytown Snack Shack revisited

As  Jeremiah's dad drove him off to practice, Sierra decided to do an experiment in blowing things up in the garage, just outside the snack shack.


First she tried pumping air into an empty coke can.


That didn't work, so she tried pumping air into an empty milk carton. 

Fortunately there were no explosions.  But not for lack of trying!

By the way, Sierra is planning to open up Shantytown Snack Shack for real this summer, as a Kid's Club.  She plans to hire someone to serve the food, have dancing inside, and you'll need a membership card to enter, issued by Sierra, and if you are an adult, you can just forget about ever getting inside the SSS.  Her other plan is that she and I will be in our kitchen cooking the food to serve.  I'm sure it will be a rousing success and I'll be sure to let you know when the Grand Opening will be. 

And yes, I'll clean the garage before then!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A dumb joke and a bad poem

I have no idea what I'm blogging about today.  Oh, that's right, something about hummus.  Ummm, I had some yesterday.  Now it's gone.  It was good.  The end.

Wait, that's not enough.

Here is a joke:  Who did the mummy take to the dance?
Answer:  Whoever he could dig up.

Hahahaha.

But today is not mummy joke day, it's Limerick Day, celebrating the birthday of Edward Lear, the limerick guy, born May 12, 1812.  He wrote "The  Book of Nonsense" which sounds like a great bestseller title to me!

I have never written a limerick, but I think I should at least try to write one about hummus:

There once was a gal who liked chickpeas
And lemon and salt and tahinis.
She mixed them one day
And now her friends say
Her hummus addiction is beastly!

Well, that isn't too bad for a quick limerick in the morning by a non poet.  But if you'd like to write your own in the comments, I'd be quite pleased!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Does Size Matter - Revisited

Back on February 26th, just a few days into my blogging life, I wrote about how the Israelis had recently made the world's largest serving of hummus, in a satellite dish, out-hummusing the Lebanese who held the previously record. 

Yesterday I received two messages from facebook friends with links to a BBC video about Lebanese chefs,  who have now reclaimed the title.  They said they will continue to out-hummus those Israelis no matter what.

This hummus fight goes back to the story of Abraham, in Genesis.   It all started when Betty Crocker, disguised as a serpent, asked Sarah and Hagar to give her their recipes for hummus.  "How many should the recipe serve?"  Hagar asked,  innocently, for she was the servant and used to such practicalities.
 Betty raised one eyebrow and replied, "As many as your offspring's offspring would consume, given the amount of land they will possess."

Well, the rest is annoyingly familiar.  And so today we have the offspring of Sarah and Hagar filling larger and larger satellite dishes with hummus, as the Bible predicted.   And until the lion lies down with the lamb, we can expect this silliness to continue.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Wolf, The Bunny Hunter


This is a photo of Dog, The Bounty Hunter.  He's a very successfully rehabbed former criminal, now a born-again Christian, and bounty hunter as well as TV star.  He apparently prays thank you to God for helping him catch the bad guys, and makes some efforts to assist with their rehabilitation, too.

I've never actually watched the show about Dog the Bounty Hunter.  I'm too squeamish.  But I consider myself something of an expert on bounty hunters because I've read all 15 of the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich.  And I laughed really hard at each one. 




This is a photo of our dog Wolf.  He is nearly blind and deaf, but his old age and decrepitude does not stop him from wanting to desparately catch a bunny and rehab it into a toy and/or lunch.

I think if Wolf, the Bunny Hunter, actually caught a bunny I'd probably be too squeamish to watch that, too.  I'd just stay inside and eat hummus.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Hide and Seek

Saturday afternoon we had Sierra's birthday party.   Seven kids ran wild with balloons for about 1/2 hour


And then Francisco organized a game of Hide and Seek.  He counted first.  I wasn't paying much attention because I was assembling the goody bags.  But suddenly the house got very quiet.  I turned around and he was just hanging around the kitchen.  Soon he noticed a spot of something on the ceiling and decided to take his time cleaning it:



The house was still completely silent.  I think they were hidden quietly for about 10 minutes when he finally got around to hunting them.  WHAT a great trick.  We went from 1000 decibels to zero in no time at all. 

Later, after lots of sugar:




the kids tried to decide who was the most crazy.  Sierra Won!  That's my girl!

Finally the party wound down.  We watched part of the movie The Tooth Fairy and all the kids went home, except Allison who lives nearby and got permission to stay and see the end of the movie.  She and Sierra continued playing with balloons:



I don't think I can add anything by writing a caption to this picture! 

The kids had a great time and so did the grown ups!