Monday, February 26, 2007

Hmph. I've no enthusiasm for blogging lately. For anything really. I'm completely lacking motivation.

Today was ok, but two pieces of news arrived at about the same time and have put me in a sorrowful state.

First, the lady who adopted Tilli informed me that the bumps on her legs (which I had thought to be scars or cysts) were actually cancerous :( They've been removed and all is well, but it broke my heart. Honestly, if Tilli had not been given to that kind woman I probably wouldn't have had them checked and it might have killed her.

Secondly, my aunt was in court today for her divorce and it didn't go well. It angers me so much that the system can ignore what is so blatantly obvious to everyone else. That people who have suffered years and years of abuse have to still be subjected to it, just a bit more indirectly. My heart is wishing all sorts of ill on my uncle, I won't lie.

Lets see... what else. I can't think. Those two things are taking up most of my brain power.

Gwen is doing this thing where, before we get out of the car to go somewhere, she says, "I shy. Mommy, I shy". Ethan did this exact same thing at about the same age! She says it in this adorable tiny little voice. So cute.

Ethan is the busiest little bee. If he's not cooking up pretend food for us, he's wanting to cook real food, or read his books (he can "read" his most favorite ones to us). Both of them are getting so big and mature. Sometimes I forget that Ethan isn't even 3 yet.

Well, all for tonight. Maybe now that I've broken the blogging block I'll be motivated tomorrow.

Bonne nuit mes amis.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Today we had a get together with the local ladies from the message board I post on.

Unfortunately, most of the people couldn't make it, but we went to April's house and one of my board favs was there and it was great to meet her and her beautiful daughter and foster baby. No pictures available at present, but soon.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

If one seat isn't comfy enough...

two might do :) He makes me worried with his chair perched up there on the couch!

The crossed legs thing is his new pose. He must be copying me. It looks too grown up and refined for a two year old!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

As if my little car scare wasn't enough for Valentines Day, we had even more excitement later in the day.

After putting the kids to bed, I changed into my relaxing clothes, a long patchwork skirt, tshirt and socks. Some back story is needed here. Jason wears socks 23 1/2 hours a day and he thinks its bizzare that I go barefoot everywhere. He is always singing the praises of socks and how they keep your feet clean and warm and protected. Well, being that it was Valentines Day, I thought, "Sure, I'll wear socks, just for Jason. Won't he be overjoyed when he see them?".

With this happy thought in mind, I headed downstairs. And downstairs I went... on my butt and elbow. Yep, thanks to those slippery socks and our wood stairs, I lost my footing and fell down all 14 hard stairs. This left me with a very wrenched neck, an ugly bruise on my elbow and a REALLY ugly bruise on the back of my hip, just below the bone. I'd post a pic of it, 'cept I really don't want a picture of my heiny broadcast on the net and it would change this blog from PG to R. In case you are wondering, I blame Jason completely for this event and I will never wear socks indoors again!

Anyway, I'm so sore and achy today. No fun. I took two Percosets last night (which I HATE because they don't work for me, but it was all I had) and still hurt all night. Can't even wear pants because its puts too much pressure on the bruise, so I'll be wearing skirts for at least a few days.

Valentines wasn't a complete bust though. Jason came home with 30 red and white tulips (my favorite flower) and they are so lovely. I have them scattered through the house. He also got me a new kitchen scale (mine expired two days ago). He's a doll.

Yesterday, before the rock incident, the kids and I went to Jump Planet in Bothell. WOW. It was fun/intimidating/overwhelming/awesome. Its basically a huge room full of inflatable mazes, slides and other fun things. SO great! I could have played by myself the entire time. If we can, I think we'll book the kid's b-day party there.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

We had a scary event happen on our way home. I'll post more later about where we were, but for now, I'll just tell you about our little accident.

A big old truck turned in front of me and lost a rock. It smashed into my windshield and coated me in glass shards. It actually punctured the windshield and had I been driving faster I think it might have come through. Based on the noise, it had to have been a very large rock. It sounded like I had hit a car.

Scared me to death. I had minor scratches on my neck from the glass grazing me. Freaky. If it had come through I'm sure it would have broken something.

From the outside it doesn't look like much...

but the inside shows the real damage. This picture doesn't show how much the glass is indented in and that it was actually punctured. There was air and rain coming through it.

Ethan, bless his heart, insisted that I hold his hand for the rest of the way home so I wouldn't be scared any more.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

I suppose I should blog. It shouldn't be a chore, but its sure feeling like one lately.

So, where to start. Hmm. Well, I'll start at the most interesting thing, which is that we went to a new church on Sunday.

An older couple that Jason has known for most of his life were up at this church. The guy, Jerry, is a pastor in Lewiston and his church "planted" this church, called The Vine. He was preaching last Sunday so we went to hear him and to visit. Its a small church that meets in an office building on Lake City Way. Because of its location, it gets interesting visitors off the street, and Jerry was heckled during his sermon. At the time it scared me, but everyone was pretty cool about it. I guess it happens fairly regularly.

Everyone was really laid back and friendly. The normal pastor and his wife are my age and they have 3 children, all of whom are being home schooled. After church, we (meaning basically the whole church) went across the street for pizza and conversation. After that, we were invited back to the pastors house where we visited for 4 hours and wore the kids out completely. We felt extremely comfortable with everyone and really enjoyed their company.

Jason wants to go again this week to see if we like the pastors preaching, and if we do we'll probably start attending regularly. The distance is a bit far (30 min w/ no traffic) but its only once a week.

Theologically they're right on track with what I was raised with. Missionary Baptist and CMA are pretty similar actually! It will be nice to attend church regularly again.

Other than that... Um. Lets see. We went to Spartan gym on Monday and met up with April and Gibson and some of April's friends. They were all super nice and I hope we can get together again. Tomorrow I'm taking the kids down to Jump Planet for a playtime and also check it out for a possible party location for the 2nd and 3rd birthday parties.

We made a nummy drink tonight that I'd recommend to all, even if you don't use the rum ;)

Alcoholic Hot Chocolate

2 cups milk
3 1/2 ounces best-quality dark chocolate, bittersweet or semisweet, as preferred
1 cinnamon stick
2 teaspoons honey
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons dark rum, or to taste
Put the milk into a saucepan and break the chocolate into pieces and add to the milk along with a cinnamon stick, honey, and sugar and heat gently until the chocolate is melted.

Add the vanilla and mix with a small hand whisk and still whisking, add a spoonful of the rum first and taste to see if you want more. Add more sugar if you want this sweeter, too. Take out the cinnamon stick and pour into 2 cappuccino or caffe latte cups.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Totally not in the blogging mood, but we had an incident today that must be recorded.

After MOPS, I took the kids to McDonalds to have lunch and let them play on the playground. On our way out, Ethan climbed into the drivers seat of the car, while I put Gwen in her seat. Ethan closed the car door. I closed Gwen's door. Ethan locks doors. Ugh.

Luckily, I had left the windows cracked, so I try and instruct Ethan to unlock the doors, but he can't seem to understand that one side of the button unlocks and the other locks. He just keeps hitting the lock side. For 10 minutes I try various ways of explaining how to push the other side of the button (more difficult than it might sound, especially if you're speaking to a three year old). I even have him hand me a straw to see if I can wedge my arm in far enough to reach it myself. Finally, when I'm just about to go inside, bite my pride and call the cops it occurs to me that the keys are in my purse and Ethan understands keys and could give them to me.

I ask him to find the keys in Mommy's purse. After taking a quick break to eat gum (grrr!) he finds the keys and starts to push buttons. I momentarily panic, thinking, "What if he hits the alarm button and then my children are not only locked in this car but the alarm will be going off too!". So I frantically shout "Don't touch the red one!", hoping he remembers what red looks like. Luckily, he did and he hit the unlock button.


It gave me one heck of a headache. It also bumped "Get spare keys made and hide one under the body of the car" to the top of my list.

In other news, we all have bad colds and have been cranky and lazy for what seems like forever but is really only a few days.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

So I don't lose it AGAIN, here is the Cincinnati Chili that we'll be having tonight and is oh so good. Note that its served over buttered spaghetti noodles. Its what makes Cincinnati Chili so unique.


2 teaspoons Table salt or more
1 1/2 pounds Ground beef chuck
2 tablespoons Vegetable oil
2 Medium onions , chopped fine (about 2 cups)
2 Medium cloves garlic , minced or pressed through a garlic press (about 2 teaspoons)
2 tablespoons Chili powder
2 teaspoons Dried oregano
2 teaspoons Cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons Ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon Ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon Ground black pepper
2 cups Low-sodium chicken broth
2 cups Water
2 tablespoons Cider vinegar
2 teaspoons Dark brown sugar
2 cups Tomato sauce

Hot pepper sauce

Cheddar cheese

Kidney beans


1. FOR THE CHILI: Bring 2 quarts of water and 1 teaspoon of the salt to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the ground chuck, stirring vigorously to separate the meat into individual strands. As soon as the foam from the meat rises to the top (this takes about 30 seconds) and before the water returns to a boil, drain the meat into a strainer and set it aside.

2. Rinse and dry the empty saucepan. Set the pan over medium heat and add the oil. When the oil is warm, add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are soft and browned around the edges, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the chili powder, oregano, cocoa, cinnamon, cayenne, allspice, black pepper, and the remaining 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring constantly, until the spices are fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the broth, water, vinegar, sugar, and tomato sauce, scraping the pan bottom to remove any browned bits.

3. Add the blanched ground beef and increase the heat to high. As soon as the liquid boils, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the chili is deep red and has thickened slightly, about 1 hour. Adjust the seasonings, adding salt and hot pepper sauce to taste. (The chili can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat before serving.)

4. TO SERVE: Divide the buttered spaghetti among individual bowls. Spoon the chili over the spaghetti and top with the cheese, beans, and onion. Serve immediately.

Cook's Notes

Use simple/plain tomato sauce.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Do you know what can cause your toilet to behave strangely?

An 8 inch wood stick, flushed.

Do you know the best way to remove said stick? Well, after plunging the thing for days (bringing up some foam animals in the process) and thinking that maybe the problem was actually in the tank, you plunge one more time. You see something just barely peeking out of the bottom of the bowl. So you go to your kitchen and find your tongs. You have to stick your hand into the toilet water, but you finally can grip the stick. You pull and pull and you can't believe how big it is and that this thing was lodged in there for nearly a week.

Yeah. That was fun.

Friday, February 02, 2007

We are all recovering from our loss of Tilli.

The kids have taken it better than I would have thought, though they still ask from time to time where Tilli is and I have to explain all over again. Ethan gets sad every time I tell him.

Last night I spoke with the lady who adopted Tilli and she let us know that everything was going very well. Tilli is getting along great with their other dog (a Dobie/Lab mix) and she slept on the couch with the lady the first night. This warmed my heart significantly. I was so afraid that they would lock her up somewhere and she'd spend her first night howling and scared.

So. Life goes on.

Today the kids and I took a walk and did something we've never really been able to do. We took a dog with us. Toby loved the walk and had a great time. The kids got a kick out of it too. Toby remembers most of his manners and is so mild anyway. I suppose one good thing to come out of all this is that we'll get to bring Toby with us to more places and and on walks and stuff.