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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!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Big Bang Yin Yang

I wish I could have worked Zig Zag Tie Dye into the title, too, but that would have made me woozy.  Here is my latest mosaic effort, inspired by Tasha Dunn's reflection at NCC on October 22nd on amazing images from deep space, and by the marriage of a scientist (Tasha) and a minister (Chrissy). 

Here's a close up to make you smile:
Thank you, inspirational women!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


What should a mother do if her 10 year old daughter suggests maybe she (the mother) needs to put on a bra when by the way the mother is wearing one.  This mother didn't know what to do except laugh and lift up her shirt.  She thought perhaps it was a sign that the mother might

1.  be too old to be the mother of a 10 year old.
2.  need to shop for some new (firmer?  pointier?) bras.
3.  make an appointment with that plastic surgeon after all?
4.  just laugh and blog about it.  OR
5.  coin a new term and see if it will go viral.

Any further suggestions are, as always, welcome, unless you are a weirdo blogstalker.  And even then if your comment is really funny I might not delete it.

Happy Tuesday y'all.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Meet Mister Mortis

Saturday morning J-dude and I played some board games before breakfast.  We played Yahtzee (his favorite) and then we got out the Taboo game and had some fun just guessing the words from the cards.

You may recall that in Taboo you try to get your team to guess one word by giving clues but without using any of the 5 "taboo" words on the same card.  For example:
I was standing at the stove stirring oatmeal while Jeremiah gave me clues.  Then he picked a card and looked at it a long time before he asked me, "Mom, WHO is Rigor Mortis?"
Here is the pie I made for our veterinarian who has been kidding me about making him a Jelly Bean Pie for a couple years.  Don't worry, Dad, it's got pudding inside, not rhubarb!
Saturday afternoon The Player and I went for a walk at Parklands. 
 Trees turning along the Mackinaw, lots of serenading birds, and this wonderful pooch who accompanied us along the way with 2 sticks in his mouth most of the time:
He was a sweetheart.  Don't know his name, but I don't think it was Rigor.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

What's for Dinner?

Saturday nights there are no kids palates to please at our house, so we often have things like Tofu or try a new dish they probably would turn their little noses up at.  (Dang dangling preposition)  Last night we were reminiscing about our lunch at Cafe 28 in Chicago and the quesadillas in particular.  I pulled up their lunch menu and it listed the items in the quesadillas:

Sun dried tomato pesto
Salsa Morita
Brick cheese
Garlic mushrooms

and then chicken or steak or sauteed spinach or...whatever type of quesadilla you order.

I had to GOOGLE all the ingredients except the cheese.  Turns out salsa morita is made with chipotle peppers.  Found chipotle salsa in a can at The Schnucks.  The label said HOT.  So we used just a wee bit in the first quesadillas but added more the next time around.  Hot Schmot!  Delicioso!

Garlic mushrooms were found easily at the Olive and Antipasto bar at The Schnucks, too.  So far so good.  I already had some cheese at home.  I bought corn tortillas, then found a little container of sun dried tomato pesto, but after looking at the ingredients I decided I could make my own.  Here's a link to the recipe I used:  sun dried tomato pesto.

We used refried black beans instead of meat.  And they were great!  I fried them in a little oil until they were crunchy.  We ate them before I could get the camera out. 

There is left-over pesto so I think we'll try it on some pasta today (while the kids turn up their little noses and have hamburgers.)

Friday, October 12, 2012

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Meet Samarra

We have a new addition to our family!  Meet Samarra, a 1 year old girl from the Humane Society of Central Illinois!

She has lots of energy and spunk.  Play Catch is her motto.  The kids ran like crazy around the back yard with her this afternoon.  Now she is resting on the kitchen floor and Await Scraps is her mantra.  Love love love!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Thursday's Child(ren)

Thursday's Child has far to go...I think.  Is that right fact checkers?

On Thursday I climbed onto a school bus and sat in the last seat with a kid that said, as we pulled out of the school parking lot, "Sometimes I get car sick."

Fortunately he didn't, no puking, though there was some bouncing around and sticking his hands out of the window which gave the bus driver some degree of heart failure.  I managed to keep said boy's hands in the windows the rest of the way there.  For that I received several compliments from other parents and the teacher who knew better than to sit with said boy.

I was assigned a group of three kids that were my charges.  Sisi and two of her buddies.  I have BEFORE HIKING pictures of them:

and AFTER HIKING pictures of them:
Here's my favorite photo of the day, though:
I would like to say that I knew this was going to be such a great photo, but it was just dumb luck.
The park, Matthiesen, near Starved Rock, is stunning this time of year.  In fact, the kids and The Player and I are thinking of heading there on Monday, since there is no school and it is supposed to be a little warmer than it is going to be today while we are at the Discovery Walk watching Kathleen as Georgina Trotter. 
Many of the kids in Sisi's class had never been anywhere like this state park that is only an hour away from here.  The comments I heard from 9 and 10 year olds such as "This is AWESOME" and "I LOVE nature, it's so BEAUTIFUL!"  made all the discomfort of riding the bus and traipsing up and down over 300 steps to get into the dells well worth it.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Normal seems so...Dark!

The Player drove us home from the train station Wednesday night and I believe I asked him about 4 times if he was sure he had his lights on.  He kept assuring me he did.  I kept asking him.  Finally he flashed his brights then dimmed them to show me that he did indeed have his lights on. 

But it still seemed so dark in front of our car.

Sisi has a phrase for these kinds of moments when things don't make sense.  She says "What the PIE?"

So in this WTP moment, we realized that after 3 days and 2 nights in Chicago, which is the City of Very Bright and Many Streetlights, Normal seemed very underlit.  We are streetlight challenged.  Or perhaps because of a lower crime rate and much less night-time traffic we don't need so many bright street lights.

We stayed in a Chicago neighborhood that needed a lot of lights.  South Side on State and 26th Street.  Nice hotel, well-priced on Hotwire,  just outside the normal realm of where I wander in Chicago.  Next time I'll stay out of the "McCormick Place" area on Hotwire.

We ate breakfast at Lou Mitchell's, lunch at Cafe 28 (Cuban food ...yum!  Best quesadillas in the whole world) and dinner at Joy's (thai food.)  We went to a Cubs game (they lost) and had dinner at the Salt and Pepper open-air diner down the street from Wiggley Field.  We shopped at Powell's bookstore and Unabridged Books.  I got to hang out at the Chicago Mosaic School and talk with Karen and Andrea there (and I bought some stuff and learned what I can order online from their store Tiny Pieces.)  We went to The Green Mill and The Player got to talk with Patricia Barber before AND after the first set.  We had to leave early because the music was going to continue to 1 a.m. and we had to go to...26th and State... on a bus.

Wednesday we hung out at the Harold Washington Chicago Public Library.  I discovered the picture files on the 8th floor.  What a treat!  Drawers and drawers of magazine photo clippings in folders by topic.  Topics like...Mosaics. 

 Hundreds of pages like this to browse.  And a lot of books on mosaics, from which I gathered more ideas.    It was a great trip, but tiring.  I kept thinking about getting home to rest, then remembered that I had signed up to go on Sisi's class field trip to Matthiesen State Park on Thursday.  Yowza.  My poor legs.  Climbing about 300 steps in and out of the canyons and trying to keep track of my 3 charges.   Pictures from that trip soon!