Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Fourteen Things I Wish I Knew When I Was Young

FLASH:  I am no longer young.


I have been thinking about all the different things the Old Me would tell the Young Me.  However, knowing the Young Me as intimately as I do, I know she would never listen.

Here's a snippet of what wisdom I would try to share:

1.  Your weight is just exactly right.  You are perfect the way you are.  You will NEVER get down to 110 lbs., and you can be really happy without All the Dieting.

2.  Boys WILL like you.  Not only for your figure, but who you are inside.  They will appreciate the way God made you physically and mentally.  You do not have to change to meet their expectations of who or what you SHOULD be.

3.  Your prince will come.  Be patient.  Don't fall for the first of many pseudo-princes.  Wait for Prince Charming to appear.  He may not look or act like the fairy tale prince, but you will know he's YOUR prince.  There will be no doubt.

4.  Don't give it all away before your prince comes.  What you have to give a man is precious.  Only share it with someone you know will appreciate you for who and what you are, someone who truly loves you forever and a lifetime.  That being said, if you should decide not to listen (as you usually do), find some kind of reliable birth control, preferably the Pill.  And take it religiously.  If you don't, you will end up with a son you love more than life itself, but also a divorce.  You will also never get that elusive degree you want so much because you will be forced to work to support yourself and that beautiful baby.

5.  Save money.  Learn how to budget.  Enroll in retirement savings.  Don't get a credit card.  Don't go into debt, except for something like a house.

6.  Appreciate and love your mother, and show her how much she means to you every time you get a chance.  Encourage her to branch out on her own and to leave that worthless piece of poop that fathered you.  She is worth far more than he could ever know.

7.  Use the talent you have.  Not just to impress others, but for yourself.  Sing.  Read.  Write.  Play.  Do it all with abandon, diligently, and with a purpose.  Love what you do.

8.  Don't settle.  Have the courage to wait until what you want to happen....happens.  Work toward it, and appreciate it when it comes.  Do what you love!

9.  Become someone who talks to children and enjoys it.  Enjoy playing.  Enjoy story time.  Enjoy cuddling and coloring and balloons.  Let your inner child live through your actions.  Become someone your children can love, rather than one who always says "NO" to them.

10.  Get your education.  Take it as far as you can, for as long as you can.  Make the most of it.

11.  Help people.  Listen to them, encourage them, give them what you have.  Share.  Let them know that they, too, are worth it.

12.  Love God.  Love Him through your devotion, your wealth, your time, your BEING.  Love Him in the way you treat yourself and others.  Know that God made you, and He understands and loves you, even when you fall short.  He loves you more than any sin you commit, more than even you love your own children.

13.  Be thankful for what you have.  Appreciate the life you have been given.

14.  See the best.  In people, in circumstances, and in life.

Friday, February 06, 2015

Bang Your Head HERE

I need me some head-bangin' music going on.

I need to hear drums, and some ROCK AND ROLL.

I need it LOUD and I need it NOW.

There are just some days that call for it, and today is one of those days.

That is all.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Ready, Set, Set, Set, Set....

courtesy UnHerd 

I have this problem.

It pervades all of the areas of my life, from writing to cleaning the house.

I just don't know where to START.

I can sit and look at the house and think about what needs to be done ALL DAY LONG, but when it actually comes to doing something?  Well, I tend to sit and look at the house and think about what needs to be done some more.

Unfortunately, Hubster is too much like me in this regard.

Yes, the bathrooms need to be updated.  Tile is falling off of the walls, there's black mold developing, grout is worn away, and the sinks were original to the house, circa 1957.  Clearly something has to be done, and soon.

I got estimates from two different contractors, and then we looked at them.  We bemoaned how much it would cost on our limited income.  We said we could do some of it ourselves, lowering the cost. We agreed it would be best not to go for expensive, but serviceable. 

And we looked at it some more.

And we looked.

And we looked.

And then, just for grins, we looked some more.

In the meantime, no matter how much we prayed over them, the bathrooms weren't being healed.

"We'll wait for The Girl to move into her apartment," we said. "We'll wait for The Boy to go off to the university to live.  THEN we'll redo the bathrooms," we said.

Like as not, they will fall down around our ears before they are ever begun.

Such are the lives of procrastinators.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Food, Glorious Food

Tonight I get to attend a Neighborhood Council Annual Meeting.  I have to say, I'm looking forward to it a little.

The Council is sponsoring a tasting of all the restaurants in the area.  There will be pho, which I have never tried before, as well as a lot of other ethnic dishes from different places in the neighborhood.

Hubster and the rest of the family are not much on trying new food.  This is, I believe, one of the reasons Eldest Son and his wife came up with our yearly continental meal.  Not only does everyone have to try each unfamiliar dish, but they have to learn a little something along the way.  A most excellent idea!

(For instance, Uruguay, our country of choice this year, was the first country in the world to legalize marijuana.  We didn't know that until after the rice dish was already cooked, but there it is.)

This past week I got the culinary creative bug again.  Hubster hates when that happens.  If it isn't meat and potatoes and green beans and corn, it is looked upon with disdain before it is ever tasted. After a few cautionary bites, the new food is either eaten with gusto, or pushed around on the plate.

I hate when that happens.

This particular evening I tried out the recipe below, expecting the worst.  But I must say, not only did the picky eaters like it, they gorged on it!  The Boyfriend was there, and he ended up eating the greater part of the whole thing (three helpings) and took the rest home.

I think we could chalk this one up as a success.

Without further ado, let me share this veritable wonder with you!

Chicken and Penne with Creamy Sun-dried Tomato Sauce

Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 C Mozzarella cheese, shredded
1-1/2 C half and half
dried or fresh garlic 
red pepper flakes
dried basil
large jar of sun-dried tomatoes in oil

Note:  all spices are to taste.

Cook 1 lb (box) of penne pasta in boiling water.  While it's cooking, do the following:

Use oil from the jar of tomatoes (a couple of tablespoons) to caramelize as many tomatoes as you want to use (I use the whole jar).  Add garlic, basil and red pepper flakes and stir until the spices are aromatic and the tomatoes are brownish.

Remove tomatoes from the pan and add chicken to the remaining oil to saute until done.  Remove chicken and pour in half and half on medium to medium low heat.  Sprinkle cheese over the half and half and melt slowly, stirring constantly.  The sauce will thicken at this point.  Add tomatoes back into the pan, and simmer for a few minutes so the sauce really gets the flavor.  (My tomatoes kind of disintegrated.)  Taste the sauce to be sure spices are OK.  Try not to eat it all before the rest of the family gets some. 

Add the chicken back in and simmer a few minutes.  Salt and pepper to taste. If the sauce gets too thick, add a little of the pasta water to it to thin it out. You can either chop up the chicken or leave it whole.  We chopped it up so that it would be evenly distributed through the pasta.

Drain the pasta and pour the sauce and chicken over it, then get ready to die happy!

I think it would be OK to sub out some of the half and half for chicken broth, as this is a pretty high-fat dish.  You could also use 2% cheese.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Aliens Have Eaten His Brain

The Boy came home for the weekend, being as it was three days long.

At least the body of The Boy came home.  His brain had obviously been eaten by aliens.

This Pseudo-Boy told us of ten-minute showers taken at school, as opposed to the half-hour showers the Real Boy takes at home.  He told us of making his bed...EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.  He told us tales of studying...and being outgoing...and cleaning the BATHROOM!!!


While he was home, he was helpful without having to be asked.  He thanked us for little things he would normally take for granted.  He gave out hugs ON HIS OWN.  He spoke in a friendly manner to the greeter at Wal-Mart.

Heck, he WENT to Wal-Mart.  With me, his MOM.  And he didn't roll his eyes or sigh loudly even once.

I'm thinking I could grow to like this new kid.