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Friday, July 31, 2009

Wardrobe malfunction or..........CONTEST!!



So yesterday at work my shoe broke. Yup the part of the flip flop that goes right between your toes separated from the shoe. I tried to staple it back together, that didn't work. So I tried to tape it, and that didn't work. Finally I tried to staple and tape it back together, and that didn't work either. So I just gave up.

Yesterday I was on someones blog, I can't remember who, but she had found a piece of Styrofoam in her house to which she turned it into this great board that holds jewelry. All she did was use some left over fabric and some cute pins.

This sparked my newest project and my first contest. YAY ME!!

Is this shoe problem really a malfunction or is this broken shoe a.....(YOU FILL IN THE BLANK)

Please submit your ideas as to what I could turn this broken shoe into to re-purpose it?


The person who submits the most creative, useful idea will get the re-purposed shoe mailed to them.

The only other catch is the winner, once they receive the shoe must write a post on their blog describing this contest and how you came up with the winning idea. Don't forget to post a picture of the re-purposed shoe on your post and link back to my blog.

This will hopefully inspire more people to re-purpose even the most random of items found in there homes, parks or wherever.

So send me your ideas, I'll pick the best idea Monday morning!

Creatively lacking.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Invasion of the.........

Okay, so moving from the city to the burbs I thought would be an easy adjustment for me. Yes the weather would be warmer, people would be seen riding their horses through the Starbucks Drive-thru and maybe we'd have to deal with some mosquitoes, spiders and overly friendly neighbors. "Hi NEIGHBOR!" We have experienced all of the above, except the mosquitoes to which I am surprised. Knock on wood!

What I wasn't ready for, was the invasion. When I say invasion, I mean they are everywhere. You know I could have been warned by my real estate agent, or better yet you sis! Did you not want to scare me away?

Seriously this is what we've been invaded by:

Ants - No one told me that when you move in, they move in. 1st night in the house and we lose almost our whole pantry. How the heck are they on the ceilings, they are like 20ft high.

Cockroaches - Oriental Cockroaches to be exact. Okay these were never in the house, but they were in the front yard. I thought they were big beetle bugs, till I hired a pest control service to get rid of the ants. Apparently these are popular to the area and live in the sewers, so there's nothing much I can do about them being outside the house. GROSS!! If these guys get inside the house, I'm so outta here.

Flying Hard Shell Bug Things - I don't even know what these are. But they just recently showed up. They fly and land on you, I mean attack you. Everyone I have seen has been on someones clothing. They are hard shelled and ugly. How do you get rid of flying bugs? I'm now seeing them fly into the house. Come on! Flying bugs are not covered under my pest control service.

Crows - So we drive into our court the other day and ugly black crows were everywhere. Where's the corn fields, the city next to us, so why are they here. I kid you not at least 4 crows were hanging out on each persons lawn or house for about an hour. Was our block the center stage of the movie "Birds 2?"

Now it's this!

I saw this yesterday in my garage!
WTF is it?
At least this one was dead already.
Wondering if I'll find more?

Anticipating what could possibly be next.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Calling all DESIGN STARS, HGTV Watchers and CREATIVE Ones alike


What you couldn't tell from looking at the photos? This is my backyard. Why is it that when builders build houses, they never LANDSCAPE the backyards! I am probably the least creative person in the world. I can barely match my clothes yet alone figure out a design for my backyard. I'm lucky because I already have a really nice stamped patio (thank you previous owners) however nothing else was completed. I also don't get how they put the stamped patio only along one side of the house. The side that doesn't even have a gate! How do you leave the other side where the garbage cans go all dirt? So in the winter, yes we have to step in mud to put the garbage cans out. I don't want to make unwise decisions like that, so I need your HELP.

ATTENTION ALL "GREEN" people!! Do you see that ugly green metal thing over the hot tub? We re-purposed that instead of throwing it away. The BF spray painted it to match the house and put a light brown cover on it! Sorry I don't have a recent picture (maybe I'll post recent pictures later), but it turned out amazing and gave me inspiration to want to be more green. There is this bench, also not picture, in our backyard bolted to the ground that I want to sand down and paint to match our patio set. I can't wait till this heat dies down to start that project. As mentioned, we also purchased a really nice matching patio set to put under the re-purposed patio cover. PROBLEM, the patio cover, the patio set, the hot tub and BBQ are all squished onto that little stamped patio and we have all this open space. We need to spread it out.

A retaining wall is a must. I know that and we definitely want to push the hill back for more room. Your backyard can never be too large. The BF wants a Basketball hoop, so cement somewhere is inevitable. Hey, I kinda want the B-Ball hoop too. I want a nice lawn but small, nothing to hard to maintain, maybe a raised deck with a pergola to put the patio set on. On the side of the house, a garden is already in the works. We love growing Veggies. Otherwise, I don't know that's why I am asking you, the people!

So the million dollar question. Can I afford this? Am I looking at 20 thousand dollars to re-do my backyard? I mean the retaining wall easily 5 to 7 thousand dollars (so I was quoted.) What the heck does something like this cost? Are there things I can do on my own? Now I'm not handy with tools, so this has to be really user friendly ideas. It's going to take years to finish, but I can at least start little projects now and have a vision to work towards. Who knows maybe I'll win the lottery.


Help me design my perfect backyard!

Help me to get on HGTV!

Send me your Do It Yourself ideas!

And of course, donations are always welcome. j/k, but seriously!

I know this is a lot to ask, but hey this is your obligation as a parent to help me out, RIGHT?

Sincerely Desperate.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

What happens when you eat to many HOT CHEETOS?

"Oh yeah, my favorite HOT CHEETOS! I can eat these all day. Maybe I should have grabbed a drink?"

"Yeah Right! You can't turn into a Cheeto from eating to many Cheetos." Grumm Grumm Grumm Grumm.

"Dude, I already told you, it's impossible for me to turn into a HOT CHEETO. Your fingers are supposed to do that. DUH!"

"What the?????!?!?!?!?! This is soooo coool. Peace out peoples!"

Monday, July 27, 2009

Side Effects of the Damn Good Margarita!

Side Effects of a “Damn Good Margarita!”

Scene 1:

It is Friday evening and we are driving home from a long days work. It is 100 degrees outside and getting hotter as we work our way through the valley towards home. Sweat beads fall from my hair line down the sides of my face, too cheap to turn on the air conditioning and waste gas, as the hot air blasts in through the windows. My stomach gargles. I say to myself, “Hungry? Yes I am.” The BF is sleeping next me, sweat beads forming on his forehead too as he snores. I think to myself, how he is sleeping in this heat, but he works hard and getting up at 5am every morning can take its toll.

Light bulb suddenly appears up above my sweaty head!

Damn Good Margarita! With one hand on the wheel the other hand reaches towards the center console to grab my blackberry. My other hand grabs the phone and my Knee is now steering the car. I quickly text: “Orajle, Damn Good Margarita’s?” To both my neighbors.

Yes I text and drive, a very bad habit, it only happens sometimes, I mean only when it’s necessary. Hey if you’ve had a Damn Good Margarita before, you’d agree this was necessary. I just had to catch them before they started their own dinner. It’s just not the same having one alone.

Beep Beep.

“Oh Yeah” I think to myself as I check my text message. My smile quickly turns to a frown, Neighbor one declines.

Me: What!? This is Damn Good Margaritas we are talking about here. I can’t believe she declined. (I say softly to myself, but she has a good excuse, she’s in pain and on medication so she’s not up to going out, yet alone drinking)

Bummed and getting closer to home because I have not received a text from neighbor 2, I’m beginning to see my dreams of having a Damn Good Margarita fade further and further away. We arrive home and I plop on the couch, it’s so hot (92 degrees in the house).

ME: Damn I really need and want that Margarita

Impatient, I text neighbor 2 again.

Beep Beep.


A reply from neighbor 2, “We are down, meet you at your house at 6pm.”

Scene 2:

We are inside the restaurant, it’s called Orajle and the waiter is loud and insane. Whenever you or anyone walks into the restaurant, he greets you with a loud “Orajle.” We laugh as this is a fun place to be especially when winding down with drink in hand. The BF and D order a Beer while myself and A order, yes you got it, the Damn Good Margarita.

Well that’s what it is called, it’s even written on the menu as Damn Good Margarita! Why is it so damn good, well as you drink it, the waiter constantly comes buy and pours more tequila and Grand Marnier into it. It’s like the drink never ends, you definitely get your $8 worth. They don’t play games here this is the real deal, no blender no fruity flavors. Just a very large glass of the original Margarita, and some salt if you want it. Damn it’s good!

ME: This is so good. Wha wha wha wha wha (I’m a buzzed, hey I don’t drink so I don’t remember the conversation, it’s like the peanuts cartoon, insert teachers voice here.)

D: What you really want to go to Reno right now?

ME: Yeah it’s like 3 hrs away, we can go pull an all nighter and come home in the morning.

The guys chuckle in the background and look at me like I’m crazy. Hey I’m buzzed; I don’t really know what I’m saying. We pay the bill and next thing you know we are in the car driving to Reno.

Is this really happening. Road Trip, you have to love the spontaneous moments.

The BF drives, and it’s a crazy drive. 10 minutes into the drive A reads the GPS wrong and off in the opposite direction we go. Great way to start it off A, Thanks A lot. LOL Back on track now, we head up 80 into the Mountains. What have they done to the roads? One section is like driving through a bobsled course, K rails on both sides barely as wide as the truck.

After a fun nervous ride, we arrive just after midnight at our destination, Circus Circus. We waste no time and get right to it, Black Jack it is for D, BF and I as A head over to the Texas Hold em tables. Not a bad start, for us. After playing some craps and meeting some fellow peeps from the YOCH, yes we meet people from our small ass town. We couldn’t believe it. We walked over to the Silver Legacy, where Pai Gow poker was in full effect.

ME: Hey JUNG how’s your night going? So please bare with me as I try to remember how to play.

Jung the dealer rolls his eyes; apparently it’s been a long night for him too. He is rude and constantly looking around for someone to relieve him. Another man sits at the table to play, they talk to eachother, well mostly Jung complains about his shift. He is far from patient. I’ve never met a dealer like him. I wanted to punch his face in. Finally a new dealer. Everyone is doing well but me. Pai gow hand after Pai gow hand.

ME: Screw this I’m heading to find a blackjack table. I can’t catch a break here.

Blackjack is where we spend the rest majority of the night and early morning. Props to the wonderful Mrs. Bobbie and the great hands she dealt us all, even if in the end she still took all our money. Next thing we know its 7am and we head home after being awake for 32hrs straight.

Props to the Penny slot machine I played before heading to the car, 2 pulls and I had $80. Great to go home with almost the same amount you came with.

The side effects of the Damn Good Margarita.

Oh did I mention, I lasted till about 6:30am and then ended up throwing up in the bathroom, and well in the parking lot in front of the car too. Hey again I was up for 32hrs straight and I rarely drink. Give me a break!

Your drunken hot mess known as me.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Break the Silence

Not quite just yet. The toast must continue for another day or so. We all deserve the time to reminisce just a little bit longer. It helps, to let it all out.

Friday, July 24, 2009

A Childs Love for their mother

There are two months in the year to which I dread, September and November. September because that is the month my Mom past away and November because that is the month she was born. I was going to write this in Sept as an Ode to her, but have this weird feeling like I just need to get it out now.

You know that old saying “You don't realize what you have till it's gone?” Well that has to be one of the most PURE and TRUE sayings ever derived. Whenever I hear someone complaining about how much of a pain in the ass their Mom is, or how annoying she is. I tell them they are lucky, at least they have someone to get annoyed and angry at.

They also say that “Time heals all wounds.” I have to disagree, as for me time only makes the wounds bigger and deeper. Time doesn’t heal! Time makes you miss them even more. In the beginning it is easier, as it all appears to be a big dream. Like it’s normal to go days without seeing you because I am working and busy, but then a holiday comes and everything is gone! The rooms empty. The last piece to the puzzle now missing and me feeling like everything you had gone through to put it together was now worth nothing.

So I want to make a toast:

Here’s to you Mom.

Here's to my 1st bra and how you embarrassed me by having dad give it to me, and how I twisted and twisted that stupid pink bow in the middle trying to take it off.

Here's to always extra long with wings and how you told everyone when I first got my period.

Here's to chopping my hair off like Demi Moore in the movie Ghost.

Here’s to you copying my Demi Moore haircut and my siblings laughing at me because we looked alike and me crying.

Here's to horsehine used in my hair to get the knots out and me fighting it, hence why you cut my hair off.

Here's to you never buying me the shoes I wanted because you thought I had too many already and me throwing a fit.

Here's to polka dot bathing suits and the circle tan lines I received from them all over my body.

Here's to you talking about my Boobs in front of my friends, and how I needed to stop touching them because they were getting to big.

Here's to late nights in the hot tub when it rained and us getting out when the lighting came.

Here’s to 5 times a day phone calls from you asking me the same thing each time ”what are you doing,” and me getting annoyed because I was working.

Here's to scary movies and you jumping at the appearance of Michael Meyers, hitting your glasses, cutting your nose and then laughing about it.

Here's to "Good Morning Law Offices of ........" at two in the afternoon.

Here's to vacations to the Beach, Camping, Disneyland and spending your inheritance to take us all on a cruise, the best vacation ever.

Here's to the naked guy on the Glass Bottom Rum Tiki boat and the same free drink of the night only it had a different name and different color.

Here's to me asking for you to bring me back a MAPLE LEAF when you went on your cruise to Canada and Alaska.

Here’s to you bringing me back a baggy full of leaves literally, when Dad knew I meant a Toronto hockey player.

Here's to still having that bag full of leaves in my nightstand by my bed.

Here's to Sister trying to pick you up from the cruise and asking if she could park closer because you were handicap and the policeman telling here "Ma’am everyone on this ship is handicap!"

Here's to the WWF and the Rock and every guy you thought had a cute a butt.

Here's to "Driving Mrs. P." license plate frames and you making us listen to the Backstreet boys, how embarrassing.

Here's to you hitting me like a girl, and me laughing when you were trying to spank me.

Here's to traveling with me on soccer trips and upon returning home, you enjoying freshly cleaned carpets and your pictures being re-arranged from the multiple house parties your kids would throw when you were gone.

Here's to knowing everything about everyone. Like when the guy came to re-model the kitchen you knew his whole life story and the anesthesiologists from all your surgeries coming to visit you after surgery because those 10 minutes they spent with you, changed their life.

Here’s to Ready Wheels and me picking you up from Dialysis after my doctor’s appointments and you sleeping on my bed in my apartment.

Here's to pushing you in your wheelchair and facing you towards a wall as I walked away laughing and then spinning you fast in circles and running down the street with you screaming for me to stop, yet laughing at the same time.

Here's to you crying in your room and me asking why you were crying and you saying "I have more to cry about then you know" and me just walking away.

Here's to paying you to do my laundry when I moved out so you could have extra money to get your nails and toes done, or was it because there’s nothing like your Mom doing your laundry.

Here's to me moving for a 2nd time and you saying "You keep moving farther away from me" yet a few months later when you passed away, we practically became neighbors.

Here’s to being the last person to see you before you passed, and to you sitting on the edge of the hospital bed almost falling off and you telling me “I’m okay, I’m just rummy from the medicine, please go home.” And to me looking back wondering if you knew what was happening and could I have helped?

Here’s to seeing you lying in the hospital bed lifeless, with a smile on your face despite the tube in your mouth and me smiling back knowing you were happy now and in a better place.

Here’s to the thunder and lightning that hit the night you passed, when we hardly ever get lighting and thunder and me telling all the babies “Grandma is pissed off!”

Here’s to old friends from my High School showing up at your funeral telling me you were the nicest person they every knew because you always bought candy and raffle stuff they were selling .

Here’s to Dad wanting a purple Rosary at your funeral because it matched his boat and all the times you put up with us all being goofy like this, especially when Dad had a big screen delivered on Sisters wedding day.

Here's to open heart surgery and the bravest person I know. For who laughs and has a good time hours before their chest is to be split open, and then ,when it's over their first words to the nurse were "I can't believe I'm alive." We never would have known you were thinking that. How strong you were to make us feel like everything was okay, when inside you thought you were going to die.

Here's to being fearless and surviving: A Heart Attack, Quadruple bypass Surgery, Diabetes, Cancer and Dialysis, just to name a few. In the end you may have not won the war (we all lose in the end), but you sure kicked ass during the battles!

Here’s to my son saying how mean you are because you keep taking all his pets up to Heaven and yet you never send him any birthday gifts or Christmas presents.

Here’s to me wishing he understood what Heaven really was.

Here’s to your life and mine being cut way to short and robbed from future memories we should be creating.

Here's to re-living it all again the good, the bad and the ugly, just to have you come back here.

Here's to the poem I wrote when you passed and sharing it at your funeral.

My Angel

Angel sent from above, where have you gone?We here miss you and hope that you’re being strong.Angel sent from above, have they taken you back to that place?Do they know we still need you, and that, you can never be replaced?Angel sent from above, would we see you again?We long for your laughter and best wishes we send.Angel sent from above, are you looking down on us?We want to feel safe and it's only you that we trust.Angel sent from above, would we always be apart?We want you to know that no matter what happens, forever you'll be in our heart.Angel sent from above, can you take away the pain?Without you traveling through life is just not the same.Angel sent from above, ensure us that everything's going to be okay.Rub our heads and say, "It gets better, you'll see, tomorrow is a new day."Angel sent from above, you were stolen from this place,If we could take back one thing it would be that we'd erase.Angel sent from above like you there's no other.We here are proud that you are our MOTHER!

Here’s to a child’s love for their Mother!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I'm not dead.......

"I'm not dead just floating, right between the ink of my tattoo i've tried to hide my scars from you. I'm not scared just changing, right beyond the cigarette and the devilish smile, you're my crack of sunlight. I'm not scared at all, underneath the cuts and bruises, finally gained what no one loses, I'm not dead just floating."


I have a very important post I have yet to work on, but promise to eventually get to it very soon. I'm very busy with work and all, but wanted to post something letting you all know, yes I'm still alive.

In the crazy that is my life, this song pretty much sums up my morning...

Missed my alarm clock ringing

Woke up telephone screaming

Boss man singing his same old song

Rolled in late about an hour

No cup of coffee, no shower

Walk of shame with two different shoes on

Now it is poor me, why me, oh me

Boring the same old worn out blah blah story

There is no good explanation for it at all

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Where the Side Walk Ends

I found this book on my bookshelf in our loft last night. It was my favorite book growing up as a child. I remember in Elementary School I was selfish and would re-check out the book week after week making it unavailable to other students. Hey back then I didn't know any better, I just knew I had to memorize the peanut butter sandwich poem.

Since the passing of Shel, I now have all of his books. I believe every child should experience the gift of reading the Giving Tree, The Missing Piece and Where the Sidewalk Ends. To me these are treasures every child should know.

In ode to my favorite childhood book, I had to share one of my favorite poems.

Where the Sidewalk Ends

There is a place where the sidewalk ends
And before the street begins,
And there the grass grows soft and white,
And there the sun burns crimson bright,
And there the moon-bird rests from his flight
To cool in the peppermint wind.

Let us leave this place where the smoke blows black
And the dark street winds and bends.
Past the pits where the asphalt flowers grow
We shall walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
And watch where the chalk-white arrows go
To the place where the sidewalk ends.

Yes we'll walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
And we'll go where the chalk-white arrows go,
For the children, they mark, and the children, they know
The place where the sidewalk ends.

Shel Silverstein

Monday, July 20, 2009

I've found my Zen!

“Usually we think of peace as the absence of conflict, change and turmoil, a state which seems impossible to attain in this ever changing world. But the truth of the matter is that turmoil and conflict are not our enemies. It is through difficulty itself that we find the road to lasting harmony. This is the essence of Zen teaching and Zen practice.

The road to lasting harmony is not a passive state. It is a lifelong practice which must be actively maintained. In scripture it states, "Seek peace and pursue it." This requires dedication, persistence and understanding of what peace truly is. It also requires and mindful attention. These days the stakes are too high not to do this.”

As deep as this sounds, I have found that all it took to find my Zen, was to organize my pantry. A messy pantry for me causes chaos, at 5am as I struggle to make lunches only to find empty boxes in the pantry with no food, therefore forcing an early morning trip to the grocery store. I know, I know I'd be less stressed if lunch was made the night before. On occasion that does happen, however sometimes I just don't get around to having time to do it. My sleep is precious to me so if my time is consumed by, showers, laying out clothes, TV shows being watched and autographs being signed, sometimes I just don't have time to make lunches before I go to bed. And seriously, who takes the last granola bar and doesn't throw away the box, anyway? I mean we just went grocery shopping, I would have bought more granola bars if I had seen the empty box and known we were out. I can answer that question with 1 word, BOY! Besides being out of food and not knowing, I also tend to have an abundance of particular items. I mean, how many boxes of Macaroni and Cheese do we really need? There are only three of us living in this house, and if you opened up our pantry you’d think we lived off of the 12 boxes of Macaroni and Cheese and the 6 boxes of Jiffy Cornbread mix. What a waste of money, because it was all buried in my pantry and I didn't even know it was there.

So I am proud to say that the crazy that was once my pantry is no more! Peace within me has been found and order has once again been restored. Yes, for it to stay this neat and organized it will take some work, at least in my household, but we will prevail.

So this mission all began with a trip to IKEA. You have to love IKEA and all of its very inexpensive wonderful items, yet when you are a shop-aholic, you have to be very careful and do what I did and purchase a large piece of furniture, even though that piece of furniture was originally was sent us on our mission to IKEA in the first place. So I guess the impulsive part was buying canisters for the pantry, but hey come one, I had good reason, did you even look at that before picture? So with our very large piece of furniture, a throw rug (Did you really think I would just pass up the $15 throw rug that would look perfect in front of the futon in our game room as it matched perfectly? No way $15 for a rug that’s, well a great deal, and did I mention it matched perfectly?) and several really cool jars in tow I made the 45 minute trek home to begin my personal cleansing.

Although it is still not the prettiest pantry in the world, hey we are real people who eat real food, and I'll never have a pantry as pristine and proper as the one in my previous blog, but I can try. This pantry is very organized and represents us, so deal with it! The top shelf is my baking shelf, where all the cake, cookies, jello and such can be found. The next shelf down is my pasta and rice shelf followed by my canned goods and all of misc pantry items. The next shelf of course is the snack shelf and finally the paper goods. So now I know exactly what I have and what I will need the next time I go shopping. Isn’t life just grand?

I'd like you to know that no actual food items were removed from the pantry, everything from teh before picture was put back in ( I think I removed 1 bag of stale chips, the other bag of chips was poored into this really cool air tigh container, no more stale chips!) The only things removed were the boxes that housed the snack food, as they were replaced with the nice cute IKEA jars. It just goes to show how a little bit of organization can give you so much more room. I was a few jars and organizers short, but hey what are you going to do? Next time I go to IKEA I will just have to pick up a few more, a great excuse to have to go back right?

So doesn't the before pictures remind you of the show, the messiest house in the country, or whatever it is called? I'm a bit embarrassed, but hey it's a crazy life, and for the record, my house is usually very clean and organized, don’t judge me by my crazy now clean pantry. LOL



Friday, July 17, 2009

Why 9 Yr olds are not allowed to get TATTOOS

True Story
Scene 1:

It's about 7:30pm on a hot summer evening in our small little town. The boy is sitting at the kitchen table eating his pizza, because Mom was too lazy to cook dinner and blamed it all on the heat and how having the oven on would just make the house hotter. The boyfriend is at the sink washing the dishes as mom is lounging lazily on the couch watching Kat Von D's show LA INK. It's the first episode of the new season, and if you aren't familiar with the show, it's about a kick a** chick who owns a tattoo parlor in Hollywood, CA. The kitchen and Living Room are open concept forming one big great room. Slight chirping from Romo bird can be heard in the background, with the sounds of metal from Peter Bunny throwing his food dish a sign that he wants food.

BF: Boy, are you going to get a tattoo when you get older?

Boy: Of course I am!

BF: What are you going to get?

Boy: Um probably Bakugan Rules, Gage is cool.

Laughter fills the air.

Mom: What did you say? (confused look on her face, trying to hold back a huge grin) Bakugan Rules? Gage is cool? Where are you going to get that tattooed at? On your chest? Why not I heart Mom instead?

BF: I can see it now, Bakugan Rules tatted across his stomach. (laughing while ghost writing it across his stomach)

Everyone starts laughing hysterically, then silence

Boy: No I'm going to get it tattooed across my BUTT!

Explosive laughter fills the Great Room, as Mom almost tips the couch backwards from leaning over so quickly to look at the Boy sitting at the table, with an are you kidding me, laughing expression on her face, combined with WOW, I almost just broke my neck and the couch.

And that my friends is exactly why 9 year olds are not allowed to get Tattoos!

I am seriously debating if I should have the Boy write this on a piece of paper, sign it so I can store it like a time capsule until he is 18, to see if then he still wants Bakugan Rules, Gage is cool tatted on his butt. The BF, told the Boy if when he turns 18, he'll pay for the Tattoo if he actually gets it. Seriously, hopefully this conversation will forever be forgotten.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Garlic-Buttered Sliced Steak with Onions

Doesn't that just sound so yummy? I made this recipe last night, only as usual I made little tweeks here and there. I have followed this recipe to the "T" and OHHHH MAN is it good, but way to much food and all that butter is overwhelming, but that's what makes it ohh so good. I had to snap a pic of the onions in the pan, just because they looked wonderful. I served this up with some steamed asparagus and wild rice pilaf (purchased a box from Trader Joes). I also had french bread on the side, but I didn't have any so that's why it's not in the picture. I gotta watch the Girlish figure you know. LOL Okay anyway.

On the Lisa scale of easy to find the Ingredients - I give this a 10 I had everything in my house
Easy to Make - I give this a 12, hey it's my scale
Taste - I give this an 8, It was good, but i think my Mediterranean steak tastes better. lol


3 tablespoons extra-virgin Olive Oil, 3 turns of the pan
2 large yellow skinned onions, thinly sliced
2 roasted red peppers, drained well and thinly sliced
Salt and pepper
A generous handful flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
4 (1-inch) thick slices from a round loaf of good quality semolina bread, from the center of the loaf
4 tablespoons butter (I omitted this item , I just didn't wanted it more healthier)
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4 (12 ounce) NY strip steaks


Preheat broiler. (I didn't toast my bread, lazy me, but come on it was 104 degrees at home last night)

Heat extra-virgin olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-low to medium heat, then add onions and roasted peppers, season with salt and pepper and cook gently until soft but not caramelized, 12 to 15 minutes. Stir in parsley.

Heat a large skillet or a cast iron griddle to high. (I heated up the BBQ, it's summer why not)

Toast the bread under broiler and reserve.

Melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat, add garlic. Remove pan from the heat and set aside until the steaks are cooked. (okay instead of this, I just rubbed the garlic on the steak with some S&P, trying to keep it healthy people, no butter if not necessary)

Season 1 side of the steaks with salt and pepper and place seasoned side down in the hot skillet or griddle.. Cook 3 minutes until the meat can be moved easily. Season the reverse side of meat. Flip steaks, reduce heat to medium and cook 6 to 7 minutes for medium rare, 8 to 10 for just pink. Remove meat and let rest a few minutes. Slice steaks 1/4-inch thick against the grain. Top with Onions and Peppers, if you toasted your bread, place the sliced steak on top of the bread and top with onions and peppers and garlic butter if you made it.

Again cell phone pictures, I'm sorry, it's just so much more convenient. I added a pic of counter, just cause I think my little guys are super cute!


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Skooter11's Club Penguin Hints, Tips and Tricks

My 9 year old son, who I think is going on 16 plays on a website called http://www.clubpenguin.com/.

What is Club Penguin?

Club Penguin is a virtual world for kids guided by an unwavering commitment to safety and creativity. In the form of a colorful penguin avatar your child can join the community, engage in a variety of fun activities, chat and play games with friends. With its continually-evolving content, filtered chat and live moderators, Club Penguin offers fun for kids and peace of mind for parents. There's no third-party advertising and it's free to play. You do have to be a paying member if you want to purchase cool clothes and upgrade your igloo. You can also get codes for free stuff if you are not a member, when you purchase Club Penguin toys and books. This is a Disney Website and you the parent controls what your child has access to. With the moderator if a child is being inappropriate they automatically get banned from the site.

To me this is much more then an online community for kids. Club Penguin teaches kids about money and how you have to earn it to purchase clothes and items for your igloo. Penguins obtain jobs and play educational games like how to type, count and problem solve through treasure hunts. It teaches them respect and team work as they gather their friends to direct and put on plays. This is more then just another computer game. Your child will not even know they are learning.

Anyway, my son has created his own blog and if you have a child who plays club penguin, I recommend they follow his blog for new tips and tricks. Every week you need to find a secret item and Skooter11 will help you on that journey. He will give you tips about hidden items around Club Penguin, secret passages and how to get into the coolest parties. Please give him your support and become a member of his blog or just shoot him a comment. http://skooter11.blogspot.com/.

Please be patient with his blog, he is only 9 years old, so if there is nothing there he's probably in edit mode and forgot to click publish, or if there are mis-spellings and things like that. This blog in my eyes is a great way for him to learn about computers, typing, spelling and formatting.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

To be GREEN or not to be GREEN

So normally I do my shopping at Winco, Walmart and Target. Yes I am frugal, but mostly I'm just broke and well, because that's what I can afford. I mean I would love to shop at Raley's ALL the time. I mean who wouldn't, have you been in that place? I think it blows Whole Foods out of the water (at least the one in my area does). WOW, the variety of different foods, and man they taste so good, but going there is always far and in between for me (except of course when I need Lemon Curd).

So since I sit in a car for 4 hours a day commuting (152 miles a day), I have to fit in where I can all my errands. Trader Joes, like Raley's use to be a store I went into for specialty items not normally found in the regular grocery store. However, due to its very convenient location, right across the street from my work, I have found myself going there on my lunch quite often to pick up the 1 or 2 items I need to complete my dinner. Well I'm all for going green, and I have to say I am so far from perfect that it makes me sick, but at least I admit it. However, when I do get the green bug up my butt I try to do my part, I mean every little bit helps rights? Not in this case. This one lady at Traders Joes, come on now seriously woman! Sometimes you have to just draw the line. Sometimes the whole bit about "every little bit counts" washes itself out and it becomes null and void.

So back to me being Green (of course because life's always about me), when I go there I do spend $.99 on a re-usable bag, because I always forget mine at home, or I'm using the previous one I bought for something else like storing my crochet blanket. Being as Green as I am, which is very little, it still annoys me when I shop there because EVERYTHING they have is wrapped in plastic. Most of the time I only need fresh veggies and ALL of it is wrapped in plastic. WHY? What's the point? This makes you so UN-GREEN, that I don't get how they can give you a coupon if you bring your own bag in? Hypocritical don't you think? Sadly, I buy it anyway (like hundreds of other people out there in the world) mostly because I'm in a hurry not by choice (Yes we all have a choice, but back to my busy schedule). I don't have time nor do I want to get back in my car even for another 10 minutes to drive to a large grocery store just to buy 2 items. It doesn't make sense to me to waste even MORE gas then I already do. I did though get rid of my gas guzzling car (17 MPG) for a civic (40MPG), so I do make my own sacrafices here and there but I'm not anal about it. Okay I did not trade cars to be more green, even though being greener did cross my mind and I truly am now, but to be honest I mostly did it because I couldn't afford the gas anymore and well over all it just made more sense. Here I go again, back off track, now back on. So I'd rather walk across the street to Trader Joes then spend another minute in the car, to be short and blunt.

Sorry about that I tend to wander off track, so stay with me. Or I need to stay with it and not wander, or yeah okay anyway.

So this lady in front of me, who has a whole cart full of groceries. I am talking $176 dollars worth to be exact, is trying to stuff all of her groceries into 4, yes count them 4 re-usable bags. She is taking her sweet time, trying to organize and re-organize the items. In the bag they went, out the bag they went, into another bag they went, out that bag they went, all because she didn't want to use a paper bag or purchase another re-usable bag. So there I stood, having flashbacks of last Saturday as my neighbors and I sat and drank coffee while watching our other neighbor pack and unpack his car till everything fit just right for their vacation. Only that was funny to watch, this not so much. I tried SOOOO hard to bite my tongue, "It's not all gonna fit lady, buy another bag!"

Okay wait for it, here's my point to all this:

Does this crazy lady even realize that EVERYTHING she just bought is wrapped in PLASTIC? Is this really happening? Is she really worried about using 1 or 2 paper bags or spending another $.99 on another re-usable bag, when all of her food is wrapped in PLASTIC and she just spent $176? I mean SERIOUSLY lady, if you're as green conscious as you are acting right now, then you wouldn't be spending $176 at Trader Joes! A place that is the LEAST GREEN store around. I don't care if they sell Organic or Local or what have you it's all wrapped in plastic. Take your little re-usable bag and go be green at the farmers market if you're going to be this ANAL. Buy local, buy fresh, because yes you had a lot of Veggies in your cart and this is not the place to buy them if you are Green conscious. Otherwise stop wasting everyone's time and either bring more re-usable bags with you (I know you've done this before, learn woman, learn!), buy another re-usable bag or just bite the bullet and use the paper ones provided by the store for free.

Oh, what happened in the end? Well she made most of it fit, the rest went back loosely into her cart and she walked away. When she get's home, I'm sure most of her food will be squashed, that's her karma.

It's people like this that hold up grocery lines and traffic for hours. People like this who I just want to B**ch slap across the head and tell them "WAKE UP AND SMELL THE COFFEE!" Seriously, don't fake the funk. I'm not one to talk but at least I admit my faults where ever they may be, and I know I'm anal, but Lady "Seriously!"

The soggier the better

So this morning I was running late and stressed as always, but today especially because last night, being the Dodo brain that I am forgot to make the boys lunch, leaving me to scramble this morning at 5:30am to get it altogether quickly so we could hit the road. Let me first off say that I am not a morning person . In the chaos that it was, of peanut butter and honey sandwiches and gogurts (store these in the freezer for yummy frozen yogurt), I somehow managed to remember to pack my lunch. As simple as it sounds, it was perfect! So good I couldn't manage to stop feeding my face to take this picture, so you get to see the leftovers. Yes, taken by my camera phone again. Seriously, I know I seriously need to remember to grab my digital and keep it in my purse. We all know sometimes I'm just not the brightest crayon in the box or elephant in the pack. Anyway this Vanilla yogurt and captain crunch tasty treat was soooo good. The kicker, it sat together for hours before I ate it, so the captain crunch became soggy and the yogurt turned red and blue in parts, which made it that much better. Can you say yum!! Pat on my back for this one, or as D would say "YAY ME!" I'm stuffed and ready for a nap.

I child proofed my house, but he still manges to get back in!!

Need I say more?

Monday, July 13, 2009

A determined hand never tires, it just cramps up till you can’t use it anymore

As a child my mom use to crochet blankets all the time. We all loved them, they were so warm and thick. She made many baby blankets and all of her grandchildren received them. Since she has left us, there are a few grandchildren who were not so lucky as to have received their blankets. So as determined as I am, and my thirst of all things new, I logged onto youtube and taught myself how to crochet (yes my ends are uneven, but hey this is my 1st blanket).
Since then I’ve also taught both my neighbors how to crochet, and still need to show my sister, even though she said she knew how and would teach me, but I saw your twisty twirly attempt at a blanket turned scarf. What happened to that scarf, did you finish it? Take a pic and add it to my comments page.

Anyway, a few months have gone by since I started this new adventure of crocheting, and I’m about a quarter, if that, done. God bless you mom, how you made so many in short periods of time. This is hard work. It’s very time consuming and painful to the hand (your hand cramps up so bad when your 1st learning but after a few weeks it goes away, sort of). The overall result, in the end, if I ever get there, will make it all worth while. So here’s my first blanket, I started out HUGE (big mistake, a scarf should have been the way to go, but my motto “go big or go home!”) . It looks bigger than it really is at this point in time. I think I will have it completed around December. It’s summer too remember, in 90 degree weather you can only have a blanket draped across your lap for so long. Plus hey I have a life, dinner to be made, TV shows to be watched and blogs to write.

Thanks Mom, and well gotta give props to grandma for teaching mom the great past time you have given me, and my hopes to pass it along to those who would like to learn. Love ya!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Crème brûlée can never be Jell-O. YOU could never be Jell-O.

Sometimes you just have to sit back and "smell the coffee!" Take it back to when life was simple, no fancy meals or cell phones, a world where you could just send your kids outside to play and not have to worry. The good ole' days as I like to call them. Hot summer days sipping on cold fresh lemon aide (made from real lemons and sugar) not pre-packaged. A world where as kids we played outside everyday instead of on the computer.
When I think of simple and easy, refreshing and wonderful. I think of JELLO. Strawberry and Orange layered Jello to be exact. Sugar-free or regular, this is a past-time treat. Low calories, super easy to make and costs maybe $.45 per box. It just doesn't get better then that. I don't even need to FooFoo it up with fancy whipped cream or fresh fruit. This is about simplicity. The simple pleasures of life.
Inspired by the boys, who both were craving Jello last week at different times to be exact. It just so happens that I have a ton of it in my pantry, so they were in luck. Just add boiling water and cold water and WHAMO, you have great tasting refreshing JELLO. It doesn't get better then that.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Pantry, Fridge and Freezer Essentials

Ever wonder what you should always have available in your pantry, fridge or freezer at any given time? Well here is my practical list of items, I keep on hand, that I actually use in my recipes.

Cayenne pepper
Bay leaves
Ground cinnamon
Sweet paprika
Dried rosemary
Crushed red pepper flakes
Dried thyme
Dried oregano
Kosher salt or Sea Salt
Black peppercorns
Steak Seasoning
Chicken Seasoning
Blackened Seasoning

Apple Cider Vinegar
Red Wine Vinegar
Distilled Vinegar
Red Wine
Brown Sugar
Various Dried Pasta
Pasta Sauce
Roasted Red Peppers
Onions (yellow, white and red)
Chicken Broth
Beef Broth
Vegetable Oil
Various Canned tomatoes
Bread Crumbs
Baking Soda

Soy sauce
Tabasco sauce
Worcestershire sauce
Maple syrup
Dijon mustard
Yellow mustard
Unsalted butter
Large eggs
Cheddar cheese
Sherry Wine
White Wine
Pickle Relish
Balsamic Vinegar
Parmigiana Cheese

Fresh to have on hand with weekly shopping:

Nuts (almonds, pine nuts, walnuts, etc., keep your nuts in the freezer, nuts have oils in them and this helps them from not rotting)
Frozen vegetables (broccoli, corn, peas, spinach, etc.)
Frozen fruit (blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, etc.)
Frozen Chicken (Skinless Breast, Thighs and drum sticks)
Ground Hamburger

I know it appears to be overwhelming, but most of these items keep for a really long time and you can make almost any recipe with these items. Usually you will have to just pick up a few items in the store to make most dishes (at least rachel ray dishes).

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Lemon Chicken with Rosemary Rice and Steamed Organic Broccoli

So my son was craving Lemon Chicken, he recently had it while we dined out with our neighbors at one of our fav Japanese restaurants. Instead of paying $50 for all of us to eat out, I decided to Google, you got it!, a Rachel Ray recipe for Lemon Chicken.

So comments on the meal were:
"It's too lemony."
"It doesn't taste like lemon chicken, I don't like it." (after all of it was eaten except 2 pieces)

Me personally, I would make it again and thought it was good, especially for my first attempt. It was a tad on the sweet side, so I need to either use less lemon curd or figure something else out. Ahhh Lemon Curd, supposedly very hard to find in stores, I found it at Raley's right in the Jam and Jelly isle, so for me it was super easy to find. Well the boy found it first, so props to him.

So this is another bad picture, taken today, yes it’s my lunch. I have to stop using my phone's camera as you can tell it takes horrible pictures. But then again I didn't plan ahead, not thinking I'd be writing this blog, otherwise I would have taken it last night when it was all pretty on the plate with the broccoli. Yes, the broccoli is not here, it was so good there was none left over and I made a whole steamer pot full for 3 people.

So the Lisa scale:
Difficulty: I give it a 10, really simple to make.
Finding the ingredients: I give it a 10, I had everything in my house except the Lemon Curd.
Yumminess: I give it an 8, I’d make it again, just with some minor tweets.

For this recipe I made it just how the recipe states, only I didn't add any hot water. I thought the sauce already looked too thin, so I added more lemon curd to thicken it up and some flour. I ended up using 11oz of Lemon curd, which I think is why it ended up so sweet. I also left the chicken on the side, and didn't put it back in the sauce as the recipe calls for. I wanted to give everyone the option of how saucy they wanted their chicken to be. Plus if they didn't like the sauce at all they could omit it completely.

1 1/2 pounds chicken breast or chicken tenders, cut into chunks
1/4 cup all-purpose unbleached flour
Coarse salt
2 tablespoons wok or vegetable oil, 2 turns of the pan
1 tablespoon (a splash) white or rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup chicken broth or stock 8 ounces
(1 cup) prepared lemon curd
1/4 cup hot water (I omitted)
1 lemon, zested
2 scallions, thinly sliced or 20 blades fresh chives, finely chopped

Coat the chunked chicken lightly in flour, seasoned with a little salt. Heat a large skillet or a wok-shaped nonstick pan over high heat. Stir fry chicken until golden, 3 or 4 minutes (until it's cooked). Remove chicken from the pan and return pan to heat. Reduce heat to medium. Add a splash of vinegar to the pan and let it evaporate. Add stock or broth to the pan and scrape up any drippings with a whisk. Thin curd by stirring in a little hot water ( I didn't do this, it already looked really thin). Add curd to broth and whisk to combine. Add chicken back to the pan and simmer for 1 to 2 minutes to thicken sauce and finish cooking chicken pieces through ( I did not add the chicken back in, I added a little flour and more lemon curd to thicken it up). When I added the flour and more curd (don't recommend adding more curd) I then, add the scallions or chives and zest, and stirred well to combine zest and scallions or chives evenly throughout the sauce.

I served this with Organic steamed broccoli, nothing like fresh veggies steamed. I also had rosemary rice. Rosemary rice is super easy, just add a spring of rosemary to your rice cooker and remove it when it's done. It just gives the rice that little bit of flavor that makes you think "hmmmm, what is that?"

Spicy Shrimp with Bok Choy Noodle Bowl (aka PHO)

So you will find that most, well pretty much all of my recipes come from Rachel Ray. Her recipes are super easy, fun to make and actually taste, well really good. Most of the time, they become my own recipe, as I usually end up changing the recipe to fit my taste. With this recipe I used less red pepper flakes then originally called for (and I like spicy, but come on Rach. 2 tsp is ridiculous). Replaced the shitake mushrooms with white button mushrooms (just cause I had them in my fridge and didn't want to waste). I opted to omit the ginger completely (I'm not big on ginger) and the seafood stock (I couldn’t find it in the store, and didn't even think to look for clam juice). I had to add Serrano peppers and cilantro, seriously what is PHO without that?

I have to say with all the changes, this was off the hook!!!! BEST PHO EVER!!!

So the photo isn't the greatest but this recipe inspired me to start this blog after the fact. I only have a picture because I texted it to my neighbor who I thought had to try it and she loved it. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

On the Lisa Scale for Difficulty to make, 10 being super easy and 1 being majorly hard to make.
I score this a TEN, it's a TEN!!

On being able to find the ingredients easily in my pantry or the store, 10 being super easy and 1 being majorly hard.
I score this a TEN, it's a TEN!!

Cook and prep time: Apx 45 minutes

3 tablespoons vegetable oil, 3 turns of the pan
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
4 cloves garlic, chopped (or two teaspoons of the crushed garlic in a jar)
2 bins of white button mushrooms whole, then slice them (or 1 case of the sliced button mushrooms) really any mushroom will work and just put in what you think looks good.
1 medium bok choy, trimmed and cut into 3-inch pieces, then cut sticks lengthwise (I just tore up 2 bok choy, didn't worry about trimming them or cutting them)
Salt and pepper (this is key to flavor)
2 quart chicken broth (original said for 1 quart, but I added 2 quarts and felt like I could have used 3)
1 1/2 pounds medium peeled and deveined shrimp
1/2 pound vermicelli (thin spaghetti) (I used capellini spaghetti, it's all I could find)
4 scallions, cut into 3 inch pieces, then shredded lengthwise into thin sticks (I just chopped them up)
1 Serrano pepper chopped, seeds and all go in the pot
1/2 bunch cilantro, just chop it up and put it in the soup

Toppings - Soy Sauce (I think this is a must), extra Serrano peppers and chinese hot sauce (any kind works)

Heat a medium soup pot over medium-high heat. Add vegetable oil, 3 turns of the pan, crushed red pepper flakes, garlic, mushrooms, and bok choy, then season with salt and pepper. Add chicken broth. Put a lid on the pot and bring soup to a boil. Add shrimp, Serrano pepper and noodles and cook 10 minutes. Add in scallions, and cilantro and cook 2 minutes, then turn off soup and let it sit 2 to 3 minutes more. Adjust salt and serve.

"In the beginning it is always dark"

Rockbiter: They look like big, good, strong hands. Don't they? I always thought that's what they were. My little friends. The little man with his racing snail, the Nighthob, even the stupid bat. I couldn't hold on to them. The nothing pulled them right out of my hands. I failed.

Atreyu: No you didn't fail. I'm the one who was chosen to stop the nothing. But I lost the Auryn, I can't find my luck dragon, so I won't be able to get past the boundaries of Fantasia.

Rockbiter: Listen, the nothing will be here any minute. I will just sit here and let it take me away too. They look like big, good, strong hands. Don't they?

It all starts with big strong hands, or a great knife, even you can be a great cook!
I love my Rachel Ray knife, it needs to be sharpened but it's what motivates me to make great meals. There's nothing like chopping up food with a knife instead of an instomatic chopper or what have you. Try it, trust me it's fun.
Get your children involved, purchase a paring knife and teach them to chop.