Monday, November 29, 2010


Overheard at my house on Thursday: I have a pound of butter on the counter, and I'm not afraid to use it.

And use it I did.

As usual, I had one thing missing from my Thanksgiving dinner: six extra people.

We had:
an artichoke dip from Target's Archer Fams which was notgood with Hawaiian bread
a veggie tray with ranch dressing and French Onion Dip

crescent rolls from a can
corn bread muffins
cranberry relish
cranberries from a can served in a pretty dish with can marks still clearly visible
deep fried cajun injected turkey
stuffing (homemade with mozzarella cheese and country sausage...a recipe that is quite good)
gravy made from turkey neck simmered in canned, low-sodium turkey broth since the fried turkey makes no pan drippings
Hungarian sausage homemade at the church at the end of the street boiled and then grilled
garlic mashed potatoes with butter and half-and-half
green beans with pearl onions and balsamic reduction
green bean casserole with the French's onions on top
candied sweet potatoes
sweet potatoes with ginger snap crumble

pecan pie
two pumpkin pies
apple pastry
whipped cream and ice cream

Korbel champagne
coffee with choclate syrup, whipped cream, and an assortment of boozes for the Irishing

What we didn't have: salad.

What we are thankful for: family, friends, security, and me yelling from the kitchen during the toast "Health".

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Bobo turned two years old yesterday. Chuckles promptly vomited his entire festive Thanksgiving Feast from school (where I had volunteered as a Milk Mom to help serve the fesat). The good news is they were both able to consume cupcakes before bed and no one missed his field trip today.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Recipe for Butternut Squash Soup

4 tsp olive oil
1-4 leeks rinsed well, tough green parts removed, sliced thinly
8 cloves garlic, peeled and pressed or chopped roughly
2 cups water
2 cups broth (or one can broth and enough water to make 4 cups total)
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed, and cut into 1” pieces (about 4 cups)

Heat olive oil in a small stock pot, sautee leeks and garlic about 10 minutes.
Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer (uncovered) for 20-30 minutes until squash is fork tender.
Blend until smooth with an immersion blender or put in a regular blender with center of the lid removed and a towel over the hole to allow steam to escape.

Thursday, November 11, 2010


Once upon a time (which we will call Spring), I was worried about Bobo. That might be my understatement of the day. I worried about his growth, his ear infections, his development, his autism, his health, his hatred of books, his dismissal of people, his refusal to eat, his love of binkies, his not-sleeping-through-the-night-ness, his sickness, his health, his life, his liberty, and his pursuit of happiness.

Officially, as of today, I am no longer worried.

Tonight, Bobo didn't want to go to bed. "No bed. No nigh-night. Rock Caca Room." Which basically means he doesn't want to go to bed but wants to rock in the rocking chair in Chuckles's room. However, Chuckles was already in bed with lights out (8:05...but don't be jealous...I'll see Chuckles again before too long...usually 2 am, 5:30 and from 6 on).

So, Chuckles was in bed, and Bobo did NOT want to go to bed. So, we danced the sleepytime dance, read Where's Spot, and then started in with "You can have your binky if you're in bed for sleeping. Night night. All your friends and blankies are in bed." He said, "No. Book." And picked up a book and started to "read". On the very first page of the book, there was a picture of a sleepy little baby overtired and crying. Bobo looked at the picture and said, "No baby. No Cry. Go night night. Bed. Binky." Then, he went to where we keep the binkies, got one, and tried to shove it into paper baby's mouth to make her stop crying.

He, however, still did not want to go to bed.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010


She lost. Whew. The headline of the paper today was:

Adams first Republican to win countywide office in 60 years

Link to the atricle

Tuesday, November 02, 2010


I voted my conscience. Rebecca Sink-Burris (L) got my vote. You might recall that I couldn't decide between her and Dan Coats. According to the WaPo, Dan Coats (R) won, so I don't feel as though I threw away my vote.

I have to say that Sink-Burris did really well in a statewide election. She got 5% of the vote. That's really good for a Libertarian candidate.

Candidate Votes %
Coats 888,280 55%
Ellsworth 649,791 40%
Sink-Burris 86,759 5%

How sad is it that when I googled Election Results 2010 Indiana, the first site that came up was WaPo and not something a wee bit more local?

So, you may recall that I mentioned that one of the candidates for local office was currently charged with a whole host of falsifying documents crimes and other unseemly, of course, I voted against her (I didn't so much vote for the other person as vote against her). Of course, innocent until proven guilty, but she wouldn't even say whether her father was deceased (something about claiming a homestead exemption and senior citizen exemption in someone else's name blah blah blah and she wants to be the TAX ASSESSOR???). Her own party basically said that they can't endorse her, but they encourage you to vote a straight party ticket while holding your nose and not actually voting in that race.

Well, the race is too close to call at this point. It's too close to call!! Which sickens me. The last prelim results posted to the County election website were at 3pm. If someone were to get those results and then decide to "get out the vote" this election might swing. Lake County politics is not known for its clean elections. My county touches Chicago and our machine is every bit as well-funded and tactically deceitful as anyone else's machine (complete with actual election ballots found in an actual bag at the bottom of the harbor).

Time for bed. Night night.

PS - Bobo has been saying, "Ding Dong. Bowl." all day. I am pretty sure he either saw the Wizard of Oz without me knowing about it or he wants to go Trick Or Treating again and get shiny packages out of people's bowls. (I do not think he is aware that the shiny packages are filled with candy. Please don't tell him.)


Sunday, on the spur of the moment, we took the kids to Fair Oaks Farms to see where our milk comes from. I had a coupon for buy one-get one admission (Thank you Entertainment book fundraiser from the school).

Fair Oaks is not organic milk, but the cows get to walk around and live in relative comfort (for dairy cows). The cows don't get antibiotics (unless they're sick) and they don't get added hormones, but their feed is conventionally grown, so the milk isn't organic. It's just....less tainted.

Anyway, they runs tours and whatnot.

I really enjoyed the farm. We didn't take the tour to the milking turntable because it involved a 45-minute bus ride and Bobo is not so much for the sitting down these days. But they had plenty of other things to do like drive tiny tractors, eat ice cream, climb a rock wall, sample cheese, jump on a giant inflatable pillow (which was a real hoot), drink milk, a 4-D mooooovie, and much, MUCH more. If you act now, they will throw in the string cheese maze for free!

I went to the birthing barn and watched a cow give birth to twin bull calves. 60 pounds apiece. It's the first time I have ever seen something born in real-life. Yikes. It was a little gross as I imagine traditional childbirth is (and beautiful too...yessiree I am sure childbirth is beautiful...and slimy). Anyway, we didn't know a second calf was coming and then the cow midwife (she wasn't a vet, just a woman who helps the laboring cows) stuck her arm (up to the shoulder) into the cow. I figure she was trying to get the placenta. When her arm came back out, she had hold of a hoof. She grabbed both, and pulled. I mean, really, pulled. And out slid another calf.

The mother cow was quite interested in her first calf and was licking and stimulating it. She wasn't all that interested in that second thing that came out of her. I was really hoping she was going to maternal up and that we wouldn't see neonatal cow death. So, the midwife dragged #2 around to the front end of the cow and eventually, she gave her calf a cursory lick and went back to #1. After about a half hour, #1 started to get up and walk away, so #2 got a lot of attention then. Everything worked out OK in the end. I never saw the calves nurse though. They get to stay with their mothers on the farm for about 80 days.


We took the kids to the Shedd Aquarium today. My company is a corporate partner, so the tickets were free. We got all access passes. All Access. Woo Hoo.

The kids? Well, they were most impressed by an area where you could put on a penguin costume and go down a slide on your belly. So, right, glad I didn't pay $26 each for those tickets.

Monday, November 01, 2010


I ran another 5k over the weekend. I improved my time almost 3 minutes. From 40:11 to 37:14.

Many people ran in costume. I chased a giant M&M for 3 miles. I vowed that if I caught her, I could take a bite. Will run for chocolate. Four or five guys dressed up as KISS (in full jumpsuits, wigs, make-up, and carrying guitars). They also ran it under 20 minutes, so impressive all around. The guy who ran in the 70-and-over age bracket beat my time, but I'm closing in on him. The best costume though was a Golden Retriever dressed up as a frilly pink poodle.

Today? My legs are like Twizzlers. And every time one of my joints in my knee or hip is bent, it’s like Crunch. Even my Skittles have been jostled into Mounds. I've been trying to think of myself as Good-N-Plenty, but some days, I just feel Chunky. But Mr. Long-Suffering thinks I'm cute and the kids give me a Bit-O-Honey, which makes me feel Almond Joy and sends my feelings into the Milky Way. They really are my 3 Musketeers. Now all I need is a Pay Day for a 100 Grand, and I will be all set like Baby Ruth.


Chuckles had a bowl of cereal this morning (Honey Sunshine) topped with M&Ms. I am a winner mother with a good sense of humor.

The kids pulled in 144 pieces of candy last night. That number makes me so geekfully happy seeing as it is (a) a gross and (b) 12-squared.

Bobo dumped his bag onto the living room floor last night and shuffled his feet through the pile as he had been doing to piles of raked leaves all weekend. He did not say, "Trick or Treat" at a single door, but he did say, "bell" and "Ding Dong" about a million times. At one house, he pointed to a chair on the front porch, said, "Chair", and climbed into it and sat down for a rest. This irked Chuckles because, I mean, there is still free candy that people will give me if we keep moving. Gotta make good time.

Both kids stayed out almost the full two hours. They needed mittens. For the 5th consecutive year, Chuckles wore my mittens around because I forgot to bring his and had mine in my pocket.