Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Works for Me Wednesday--taking the train!

Wouldn't you love to have 45 minutes a day to read? Or nap? I just found that time: I took the train to work today.

Really, I forgot how much I missed this. I have been driving to work lately (which I also enjoy; NPR on the radio instead of the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse CD!), but when I was full-time and pre-kids, I was always on the train. I have tried to convince myself that it wasn't a good idea with the kids--I needed my car "just in case"--and while that is somewhat true, the ride was bliss. I broke through to the India stories in Eat Pray Love, I put on my makeup before a seatmate joined me, and I had a nice, easy walk to my office with time to gather my thoughts and see a different part of campus. (Of course, the walk to catch the train was a little more pressured, but a small price to pay.)

So, as a reminder to myself: as much fun as it is to take the boys on a train ride, they aren't just for the kids anymore! When I can, I'm taking the train or other public transportation. That is working for me this week; what's working for you? Go check out Shannon's blog to see other ideas.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Menu Planning Monday, Halloween Edition

Back again for another week! We'll see how this one goes. It's my first time in four years (gulp) to work a 5-day week, even if it isn't quite full time. My husband is wonderfully taking odd shifts to help cover kid-care. So not a great week for eating together but that doesn't mean I'm not going to try to feed everyone well.

Meanwhile, comments from last week: The Robin Miller recipe was awesome--but the red curry paste has a real kick. I'll use less next time by my husband LOVED it. Didn't try the coconut rice, though--next time, and see if that helps with the kick.

And far more important than my meals: my sister in law continues to recover well. She was released from the hospital this weekend--yay! All mobility and other facilities (language, etc.) seem to be in place. She has a major headache (um, duh) and is very, very tired, but we're all practially giddy at how well it went. AND, there's a 1% chance of return, so with any luck, this will be the only time we go through this.

So, the plan for the week is:

Monday: leftovers, postponed football game goodies (all the games this weekend were put on rain delay until tonight; since I'm on my own with the boys it might be a good distraction from Daddy not being home)

Tuesday: turkey breast, acorn squash, stuffing, salad

Wednesday: Happy Halloween! Slow cooker roast pork (grandparents are hopefully coming over to staff the door while we trick-or-treat with the baby giraffes), mashed potatoes, salad, pearl onions (father in law's favorite)

Thursday: leftovers

Friday: one more football game special!

Keep fingers crossed for me, folks! For more menu plans, check out I'm an Organizing Junkie's blog carnival at her new site!

Love This

Totally lifted this from Rocks In My Dryer.

But if you worry at all about the messages that media sends to your children via undies-wearing models on the side of the bus, or the peek-a-boo mannequins in Victoria's Secret across from The Children's Place, this might hit home with you, too.

Had a wonderful weekend visiting friends and family in DC, with a highlight being watching another cousin's marching band perform--in full costume--in two neighborhood parades. I'm still on a high. AND, Dad stayed home and wait until you see the transformation of the computer room--our Organizational Challenge room! Woo-hoo! Those pix coming soon, I hope--it's a busy week at work and it'll be all I can do to keep up with MPM & WFMW. Oh, yeah, and NaBloPoMo, too.

Happy Halloween Week, everyone!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Starting Smart Habits Saturday

When I was growing up, and, in fact, well in to my 30's, I was a champion sleeper. I always felt so bad for people with insomnia or other sleep issues since I could sleep anytime, anyplace, anywhere. And I often did, though I was also a night owl. College was great for me; I'd study from 10pm to 2am and have classes start at 10 or 11 in the morning, and my circadian rhythms were never happier.

Since the boys were little and nursing all night, however, this hasn't been as true. Especially since the little one had a rock-solid 1am habit, I learned that it was better for me to just wait up for it than to actually get some sleep and try to drag myself out of it.

Now, though, the little one is long past the 1am feeds, but I am often acting as if he is still at them. I got in the habit (a-ha!) of using that time from 11pm to 1am to be at the computer or catch up with my favorite TV shows (tivoed (though I should say "digitally recorded" or just showing).

It is time to break that habit. So, my friends, my Smart Habit this week is weaning myself from my night owl ways, at least for now. (Plenty of time later when I'm retired.) My goal: to only watch tv in the bedroom past 11pm. (Yes, I know you aren't supposed to have a tv in the bedroom. One habit at a time.) If I'm in bed watching, I'm more likely to fall asleep and stay that way (our tv has a sleep mode where it turns itself off). And with any luck, that will help get me off the computer by then too. We'll see how that goes by next week.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Great Bloghopping Find (after a small rant)

Thanks to Mary for the term bloghopping! Not even sure how I ended up here but I'm glad I did. Kids' playthings and gender are on my mind since Son 1 switched nursery schools. At the open house for last year's, which was Quaker, a parent asked about the Quaker influence on the curriculum, and the teacher laughed and said, "Well, I hate to say anything about non-violence because I don't know any nursery school that supports violent behavior!"

Be that as it may, it took less than five days at the new school for my son to come home talking about "shooters." And by the next week, "witches that shoot fire." (This from my poor boy who still finds many Thomas the Tank Engine stories "too scary.") And the next week, cocking his fingers like a pistol and making shooting noises.

My heart breaks.

He literally doesn't even know the word "gun" yet, and I suppose I should be grateful for small favors. And I know that "big" and "powerful" are his two favorite words and concepts in the entire world, so the attraction isn't a surprise. But it is amazing to me when other parents clearly don't feel the same way I do about sheltering small boys from these things. I had figured it was coming from one of the two boys in the class who are the youngest of three boys in their families. Wrong-o! It's another barely-4-year-old who is the first child in his family. And my son is desperate to invite him over to play. "Over my dead body" is a tempting phrase but perhaps unwise given the playthings of choice.

Anyway, I would be fretting differently but not less, most likely, if I had girls: check out AlphaMom and her post on the latest must-have dollhouse, at least in the world of the advertisers. Made me laugh and want to cry at the same time. At least my Barbie airplane provided an exciting career for Barbie. But maybe that's what poisoned my brain against this stay-at-home-mom thing! Pesky feminists, agitating for self-actualization.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Works for Me Wednesday (menu planning for the week)

First, and most critical, what's working for me today is that my sister-in-law came through her brain surgery. Many thanks for the prayers and good wishes you all sent our way. They got both tumors, though one was tricky; and tonight she could move extremities and recognize family members, which are hopeful signs for recovery.

The other thing that's working for me: this menu planning. I know it's not a real revelation but folks, I am a convert. It seemed like a truly insurmountable and somewhat ridiculous idea, to plan what I would be eating SIX DAYS from now, but wow. It turns out, I really like not going to the market every day. Once upon a time, before I had two small boys, I loved just wandering the grocery aisles of our small town grocer, picking whatever looked appealing for the night's dinner. I'm over it. I'm loving the meal planning and thanking OrgJunkie for coordinating and getting me hooked. I'm also thanking Frugal Living's Mary Anne for the pantry challenges, which have really helped control the bills, control my impulse buying (a tube of polenta? really?), and inspired me to discover new recipes for using what's in the house already.

Simplifying dinnertimes around here (and shopping less) is working for me! What's working for you? Find out from others at Rocks in My Dryer.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Menu Planning Monday

Thanks to all (Mary Ann at Frugal Living blog, Org Junkie and Crystal's $35 meal plan) for inspiring me to stay with the "eat what you have" program. All I bought for this week were fresh fruit, the chicken breasts and some cilantro. Oh, and we were out of rice.

Busy week this week, with meetings, work, classes, you name it. And please keep my sister-in-law and her health care professionals in your thoughts and prayers as she has her brain surgery this week on Wednesday.

Monday: Leftover soffrito from last week (pretty good; will add to the rotation); rice; broccoli

Tuesday: Altered Robin Miller crockpot recipe for sesame red curry chicken (I can't eat peppers so I'll try it with carrots); rice; Trader Joe's frozen spring rolls to compliment

Wednesday: Lasagne (thank you City Mouse-Country Mouse!), salad

Thursday: Leftovers augmented by cabbage and kasha (never had this before but my best friend makes it and so I'm inspired to try with this head of cabbage hanging out in my fridge)

Friday: I'm hoping my sister-in-law is well enough for me to go see my nieces in DC for the weekend, so no cooking this weekend.

Can't believe this week is already here. The whirlwind begins....

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Where to Begin...?

Ok, folks, I don't know that I can stick another project in to my November, but here it goes: Time for the Organizational Challenge!

I am always so inpired by these. I am even more inspired that she does not stick to the exact dates for the challenge. So I need to think about what I'm going to do.

Why is this so tantalizing, you wonder? What else is going on in November?

Well, there's my dog's birthday. And, oh yeah, my husband's. And Thanksgiving. Lots of family birthdays, including the beloved babysitter. And my sister-in-law is having brain surgery next week so that's taking up some psychic energy until we see how that goes, and we're assuming there will still be ramifications of that well in to November. And then there's that job thing, where the first nine days of the month are really like running a marathon.

And in the bloggy world, there's the Reading Challenge. It's also National Blog Post Month (NaBloPoMo, for those in the know), though I will spare you my thoughts every single bingle day. (My hope is to use the days to write posts ahead for Works for Me Wednesdays, etc. Even if the NaBloPoMo rules call that cheating.). My favorite yearly torture/course correction on Organized Christmas steams full speed through November.

Deep breaths. It's all fun. (Except, of course, the brain surgery. As my sister-in-law said, we were hoping for rocket science.) Just trying to remember that. Wanna join me in any of this crazyness? I highly recommend it. Maybe just not all of it at once.

WFMW--beeping key finder

I'm almost embarrassed to admit this one. Our house is not big. We're lucky; it's very comfortable, but it's a split level, so our downstairs area with kitchen/living room/dining room/family room is a mostly open plan where you really can see almost everything from everywhere. So you would think that finding things wouldn't be an issue.

But, there you would be wrong. To my long-suffering husband's chagrin, I am messy. In a big way. I have other positive traits but even our two year old is better at putting things away than I am. I am working on it. But for us, a great invention was the button on the base of the phone that makes the receiver beep so you can find it. (They kindly call it the "intercom" not the "so you can find the thing in the mess your wife made" button.) Wouldn't it be great, I thought, if there was something like that for all the other stuff I'm losing?

There is. And my lovely long-suffering husband found it. Target had them last year; something similar online is here but I cannot vouch for it; it's just something similar but not the same as ours.

My husband found me a remote locator. We stuck a receiver on four different easily misplaced items. There is a sacrosanct spot in our kitchen drawer for the remote. It never moves from there, ever. It has four buttons; each button is labeled. (Thanks again to my husband.) The red one is for the TV remote. The blue one is for the DVD remote. The yellow one is for my car keys; the green is for his car keys. So if we are in a jam, we just wander around, pushing the right-colored button until we hear the beeping and voila! There is the missing object.

Yes, keeping a neat house would be easier. But in the meantime, this works for me! Go see Shannon's blog, Rocks in my Dryer, for more good ideas!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Blog Action Day

Bloggers Unite - Blog Action Day Hey, I can't call myself MemeGRL and not join one of the biggest blog memes around, can I? Fortunately, living greener is a goal of mine anyway and while I try not to get preachy about it, we can all learn ways to do things to protect the earth, our families, and our wallets.

A few sites of interest are listed here.

The one I've used most is the Carbon Footprint Calculator. Because I need to be reminded that is isn't just hard on my wallet to go tooling all over God's green earth in my car.

And--thanks to my friend at Don't Eat Baby!--these items from "I Am Green" on Facebook: (Hey, this reminds me of the "purity test" that was all the rage my freshman year in college!)

I do not own any personal motorized watercraft, aircraft, or a hummer
I do not have gasoline bonfires
I recycle, even when it is not convenient
I own some second-hand / re-use clothing
I don't buy disposable plates/utensils (sometimes)
I eat only free range, sustainable animal products (usually)
I eat one locally sourced meal a week (I don't separate my food this way but yes)
I carry a mug for drinks I buy to go
I bring my own bags to the supermarket

Some of their suggestions are easier than others. Small changes add up...our electric bill has dropped since we got an energystar refrigerator, turned down the temperature on our water heater, and installed new windows.

What do you do to live green?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Menu Planning Monday

Ok, the Dream Dinners chicken from last week? Amazing. Will drive all the way back there just for that when it comes around again. HOWEVER--it was a Super Suppers meal, not Dream Dinners. Mea culpa!

All that pizza? Still in my fridge. Lunch ahoy! My boys will be thrilled. And both birthday parties were great--thanks to City Mouse Country Mouse for the yummy apple cake to augment the Thomas cupcakes (the last bastion of Thomas in the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse themed birthday party! it feels like Toy Story to us, where Buzz and space stuff start crowding out cowboys....).

So...on to this week!

Monday: spaghetti and meatballs, salad (leftover from Sunday's 4th birthday party)

Tuesday: steaks on the grill, salad, potatoes (either baked off in the cast iron skillet--thanks again to City Mouse for the pan--or mashed yukon golds), probably broccoli something

Wednesday: Cuban Beef Picadillo I made it today while getting ready for the party; made it up to the thickening step, will finish off from there. Seems pretty good so far, really just a sweet-ish meat sauce but I think that a few days of sitting in the fridge will only help the flavors meld more. Recipe at the end in case the original link goes away eventually. From the Philadelphia Inquirer food section last Thursday. Carrots and celery will be on the side for some veggies. And do check the article while it's there. The other recipes look good too, and it's a great reminder of one reason to do the menu planning. (The article is about how much money one family saved by making all their meals at home for a month.)

Thursday: I think we'll still have spaghetti at this point! Or Picadillo.

Friday: last home football game; will eat there.

Saturday: Homecoming at my alma mater, with a big kickoff to the newest fundraising adventure. Free dinner. Woo-hoo!

Sunday: TBA.

Happy week, everyone! (And to Laura, our blog carnival hostess at I'm an Organizing Junkie, feel better!)

Cuban Beef Picadillo
Makes 4 servings

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

1 1/2 pounds lean ground or minced beef chuck

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons chili powder

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1 can (28 ounces) tomatoes, diced with juice

1 3/4 cups beef broth

2/3 cup raisins, optional

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

Salt & freshly ground pepper

Steamed white rice

1. To a large, deep, medium-hot skillet, add the oil and sauté the onion until translucent, 3 to 4 minutes.

2. Stir in the beef, breaking up clumps, cooking until it begins to brown, 7 to 8 minutes. Drain and discard fat.

3. Stir in the garlic, chili powder, cinnamon and allspice; cook, stirring often, for 1 minute. Stir in the tomatoes and juice, broth, raisins, tomato paste and vinegar. Simmer on medium heat, uncovered, until thickened to a stewlike consistency, 10 to 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Divide steamed rice among four shallow bowls, ladle the picadillo over top, and serve.

- From Williams-Sonoma's Food Made Fast: Weeknight cookbook

Per serving: 590 calories, 41 grams protein, 56 grams carbohydrates, 8 grams sugar, 22 grams fat, 111 milligrams cholesterol, 901 milligrams sodium, 4 grams dietary fiber

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

WFMW--Recipes on Palm Pilot

I'm lucky enough to have an uncle who is waaaay into gadgetry. Many many years ago, he was an early Palm Pilot enthusiast. After watching the Newton crash, I was skeptical. But then he bought one for his wife, who loved hers, and gave one to her sister, my mother, so they could be "matchy-matchy." My mother was a gadget fanatic herself; she adored James Bond movies primarily for the scenes with Q. So when she lost hers, she got another, then promptly found the first one and gave it to me.

Well. This was the coolest little gadget I'd owned up to that point. And it still is very useful for things like calendars and always having a backup to an address book. But the best "mom" use I have for mine is storing recipes. The newer Palms have huge memory capacity, and I have about 200 recipes, some tried and true, some on the "maybe someday" list, all stored under a recipe category in my "memos" section. This allows me to use the search function to find recipes for whatever I have in the fridge, or if I'm in the market and need to do a double-check of critical ingredients, it's all right there. It's been a huge help to me in my efforts to learn to cook. For more great ideas, check Shannon's blog at Rocks in my Dryer!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Menu Planning Monday

Fun and interesting week this week!

Monday--Dream Dinners chicken (something with mozzerella, pecans, and pesto...will let you know how it goes), mashed potatoes, green salad

Tuesday--my nephew's first junior high football game! We're hosting the cookout since it's down the street from our house: hot dogs, hamburgers, potato salad, green salad, munchies (chips, dips, veggies, etc.)

Wednesday--Pizza fundraiser for my Mothers and More group! (Are you local? Wanna come? Email me!)

Thursday--leftover chicken and/or pizza

Friday--Son 1 is four! More pizza (alas). (Sort of "alas.")

Saturday--we'll see

Sunday--Son 1's family party--lots of meatballs & noodles!

Have a good week everyone!

Friday, October 5, 2007

Holiday Cooking (yes, already)

Count me in as another who thinks that October 5 is a little early but maybe that's why I always feel behind. And we were at a very large discount chain store today that isn't my favorite (but boy does it have cheap apple juice), and they did sneak in a Christmas carol on the music and one aisle of early Christmas decor next to the overwhelming Halloween selections. (Alas, no toddler giraffe costume like Son 1 wants. And me not being crafty, I'm a little anxiety ridden about this. But that's a different holiday.)

My mother was Italian, so we always had three fishes on Christmas Eve. I hear all the Italians out there saying, "What?!?! Three fishes?!?! You mean seven, right?" And the answer is, no, I mean three. My dad (Irish) was allergic to fish that swim, so we had three kinds of shellfish on Christmas Eve so that it didn't end at the hospital. If Mom felt particularly industrious, she'd pop some flounder in the microwave for just the two of us, or make some angels on horseback (scallops wrapped in bacon) or pop open a tin of oysters to put on Triscuits. Once my dad died, we went back to the full seven fishes and enjoyed honoring the tradition even as we tweaked it with things like tuna salad and sushi instead of baccala.

Fast forward to Son 1's first Christmas. We were thrilled when our church asked us if he could be Baby Jesus at the children's mass on Christmas Eve. Who says no to that?! It is one of our most magical memories of that first year of parenting, watching our behemoth 18-lb. 2-month-old squirming in the firm grip of one of the most placid 6th grade girls you've ever seen. The whole first pew was our family, three generations from both sides, there to enjoy the moment.

Since the church was 2 blocks from our house, we invited everyone to dinner after. We were blessed that my aunt, a Cordon-Bleu chef, poached a salmon for us, which was the clear culinary highlight of the evening. But in a pinch, Rachael Ray came through for me with a starter course that got most of my fish in to one dish and kept my kitchen ready to go for the visitors even with all the decorations up.

Without further ado, I give to you my/Rachael's recipe for cioppino, my way of sneaking five fish in to one dish, allowing the salmon to be the star of the show. (And, as a note, cod is often hard to find around here at that time of year; any flaky white fish works well--even the flounder Mom and I used to split.)

Cioppino: A Fine Kettle of Fish Recipe courtesy Rachael Ray

I am half Sicilian and so a large part of the family does "The Seven Fishes" on Christmas Eve. I do not have the patience to make seven dishes. I make this instead -- it uses 5 varieties of seafood, all in one pot. Now that's a happy holiday!

1/4 cup (3 turns around the pan in a slow stream) extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 to 3 flat fillets of anchovies, drained
6 cloves garlic, crushed
1 bay leaf, fresh or dried
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup good quality dry white wine
1 (14-ounce) container chicken stock
1 (32-ounce) can chunky style crushed tomatoes
4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed (about 1 tablespoon)
1 handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 1/2 pounds cod, cut into 2-inch chunks
Salt and pepper
8 large shrimp, ask for deveined easy-peel or peel and devein
8 sea scallops
16 to 20 raw mussels, scrubbed
A loaf of fresh, crusty bread, for mopping

In a large pot over moderate heat combine oil, crushed pepper, anchovies, garlic, and bay. Let anchovies melt into oil. The anchovies act as a natural salt, the pepper flakes will infuse the oil, providing heat.

Chop celery and onion near stove and add to the pot as you work. Saute vegetables for a few minutes to begin to soften and add wine to the pot. Reduce wine a minute, then add chicken stock, tomatoes, thyme, and parsley. Bring sauce to a bubble and reduce heat to medium low.

Season fish chunks with salt and pepper. Add fish and simmer 5 minutes, giving the pot a shake now and then. Do not stir your soup with a spoon after the addition of fish or you will break it up. Add shrimp, scallops, and mussels and cover pot. Cook 10 minutes, giving the pot a good shake now and again.

Remove the lid and discard any mussels that do not open. Carefully ladle stew into shallow bowls and pass bread at the table.

Recipe Summary
Difficulty: Medium
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Yield: 4 healthy servings
User Rating: five stars

Episode#: TM1B36
Copyright © 2006 Television Food Network, G.P., All Rights Reserved

Want or need more holiday cooking ideas? Check out this great blog carnival hosted by Overwhelmed With Joy!

Fall Into Reading--Book 2--The Secret Life of Bees

After two book groups, a choosy friend, and a nephew's summer reading list all included this, I felt I should read it. I had a hard time getting in to it the first time I tried; it's been floating around the house forever, and this seemed like a good time to try again.

I'm glad I persisted. I'm not up for super-subtlety anymore (at least, not right now at this stage of life and sleep deprivation) and so I enjoyed Sue Monk Kidd's style, which all but has Lily, the narrator, turn to you and bonk you over the head with observations the author feels she needs to get across. But so many of those observations hit so close to home for me, it was worth it completely.

I'm not doing this book justice because the topic of mothering, and lost mothers in particular, is painful for me. But as someone who holds the story of Mary in her heart, and loved and learned from Beverly D'Onofrio's Looking for Mary, Lily's discovery of Mary in the absence of her own mother was easy to enjoy vicariously. And I also found her ultimately successful search for and devotion to "other" mothers resonating with me, as I always have sought out older women as mentors and "extra" moms, even when my own mother was living. (I sought these women out because of the strength of the relationship with my mother, not a weakness; I knew how rewarding these relationships could be.)

So now, with the dwindling of the mother figures to me in my life, and my mother-mentors now being my friends and peers, I will try to remember the words of the apiary queen in the novel, August: "You have to find a mother inside yourself. We all do. Even if we already have a mother, we still have to find this part of ourselves inside."

Long before I became a mother, a freak set of symptoms took me to an MRI that found a brain lesion of unspecified origin in a fairly inoperable spot. I remember going to lunch with an about-to-be graduate whom I'd admitted to college, and talking with him about the diagnosis and the life re-evaluations it had inspired, even as I'd learned that it would not be requiring surgery or anything but cautious observation. I told him that I was fortunate that I had but one regret, if the lesion turned out to be more serious, and that was that I hadn't had children. He shook his head and said to me, "You have had lots of children. Every student you admitted here--you gave them a new life that they wouldn't otherwise have had. We are all your children." It was a powerful moment, and one that reminded me that giving birth isn't the only way to mother. (That young man, by the way, is now a minister. Not surprisingly.)

But that is a different kind of mothering than the day-to-day of wiping crumbs, changing diapers, teaching right paths, and trying to set a good example of loving patient kindness. It has been humbling to realize I was a better secondary than primary mother, and my challenge for the next several years is to change that.

So: on to the next book: Playful Parenting. Who knew my reading list was such a cohesive journey?

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

WFMW--Backwards Day

Usually on WFMW (Works for Me Wednesday) we offer advice. Today we solicit it.

So my question, dear readers, is this: How do we get our almost 4-year-old (like 10 days shy of 4) to stay dry through the night?

I know he has the bladder control to do it. He has gone 8 hours during the day, and can alllllmost make it to a reasonable hour of the morning. And he almost always holds it during naps.

He's getting discouraged and the pep talks about how he learned to walk are wearing thin. And we can't go back to pullups at night because then he backslides (so to speak) on the pooping in the potty and holds it until he's in a diaper again.

I'm doing the "sheets lasagne" and have dry stuff out for the 5:30am changes. Any hints for getting him over the hump?

Any answers will be happily accepted. Think you can help solve other problems? Go see Shannon at Rocks in my Dryer for other WFMW pleas!

Monday, October 1, 2007

Apropos of Nothing (Haiku Tuesday, early)

the subway clatter
beneath my window reminds
me of being young

Did I mention I went back to work at my alma mater? And I am like a fish thrown back in the ocean from a tank? And while I miss my boys like crazy and mourn the lost time with them that I am about a thousand times more patient with them since that other part of my brain is nourished now with at least eight new non-kid-related ideas a day? My office is on top of the same subway line that my freshman and junior year dorm rooms were on top of and while I'd never say I missed the sound and odd smell that come with every passing car, it feels strangely like home.

One Deep Breath's inspiration this week: Snips & Snails: Little Boys. There ought to be something there for me this week. And where was I two weeks ago for the haiku recipes? Oh, yeah, I went back to work and got all thrown off kilter. Getting back on track here. No pun intended.

Meal Planning Monday

And we're off at the start of another busy week! It's not a good sign when I'm derailed on Monday from my Sunday-planned dinners. So here's the revised version & wish me luck!

Monday: as it turned out...rotisserie chicken, tomato & mozzarella salad, white beets with butter, baked potatoes (and TLC cheese crackers if you are my youngest son, who is sick)

Tuesday: Dream Dinners pork chops, spaghetti squash, roasted carrots

Wednesday: Go Phillies! Hot dogs, grilled eggplant, beets, baked beans, salad

Thursday: Hungarian beef stew from the crockpot. Will let you know how that goes.

Friday: Leftovers before the big Homecoming football game. We're all about the bands this year as none of our teams have won a game yet. Did I say "go Phillies?" Go Phillies! (And a big BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO to the TV schedulers who put their games at 3pm, 3pm, 9:30pm, 10pm, and 6:30pm. BOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Naptime, naptime, bedtime, bedtime, dinnertime. Boooooo. Loathesome.)