Friday, November 27, 2009

Holiday Exhaustion

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.
Lest anyone make any mistake and think this is my's so not. We left off two mantles cause I was tired of decorating. Unfortunately pictures really don't do it justice. Came home to my Charlie Brown Christmas tree and decided something had to give. G's turned out so beautiful that tomorrow we're going to do the unthinkable and dismantle the tree and start over. Break out the smelling salts......somewhere in Decatur, Cindy just fell off her chair into a dead faint.
Sunday I've got to go fix that blasted ribbon on his tree.
BTW Cindy, that fabulous pre-lit tree that we put together 10 years ago......the person that took the tree down that year took all the lights off of it. I'm. not. kidding.

Thursday, November 26, 2009


So much to be grateful for. The list is long. We do gratitude lists daily year round. It's part of our daily routine and usually occurs at dinner. I'm writing and doing heavy lifting. The only multi-tasking I can do. I keep them all in a composition notebook and we go back and read them on Thanksgiving. It's a cool tradition.

This morning I let the girls watch the M*cy's parade for about 45 minutes. The intent was to DVR the remainder but "someone" messed with the remote so that didn't happen.
The memories of a living room of girlish giggles will be with me forever. Truly priceless.

Lunch at my mom's. Not a big fan of turkey but boy oh boy my mom rocked the house this year. The turkey was da bomb. Moist and juicy. Her dressing is the stuff dreams are made of. Heavenly homemade yeast rolls. The kind you just want to sit down and waller in. This year my only responsibility was to make cornbread for the dressing and gravy. I'm a slacker this year but there's whole nuther piece of our equation now. G told my parents they did all the work and I filled up the table. :)
Missing Cindy, Erin & John.

This afternoon the tree has been put up and decorated. Another set of hands meant the tree went up in record time. Tomorrow we'll put G's tree up. Dreading it already. 8 feet of tree, four mantles, one massive curved staircase, two front doors, and the iron gates. Yikes. I feel a nap coming on already. The consolation prize is that I'm not responsible for taking his decorations down.

Tonight there will be early bath times and then we'll all load up in the truck and head to town in our jammies to see the Christmas lights. Our city park is decorated beautifully and open free to the public. They really do a good job and it's really appreciated by our our community. Yes, Chrissi, I remembered to get gas so that I don't have to get gas in my jammies.

It's been a great day so far. Great food, wonderful family and traditions filled.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Still Living

It seems I'm getting worse and worse about blogging. So sorry about that. I've felt really under the weather lately and just can't seem to make the time to blog. Attempts have been made to comment but they have been really sad and pathetic. My apologies.

J is coming out of traumaversary more and more each day. I'm so glad to have her back. We're trying to get with the Thanksgiving program and start our holiday cooking. Notice I did not say baking. :) Well.... except for cornbread for the dressing and cornbread really doesn't count.

We are doing an energy dance every day where we push the fear energy away and bring love and light into our hearts. It's been very cool for both of us. Also, doing a yoga modified sun salutation. We sit in the strong (power) sitting position, facing each other, knees touching with hands in the prayer position, pouring pink love into each other's eyes. Ending with reaching our hands to heaven and then a long hug. Powerful stuff.

Sssssshhhh it's a secret.....we've got tickets to Bon J*vi in the spring. Like up close and personal tickets. Really excited. J LOVES Bon J*vi. Trying to get her prepared for her first "real" concert by letting her watch live performances on y*utube. What did we ever do without the internet?

Spent last night with Cindy. New Moon, dinner, time with Cindy...priceless. Peed my pants from laughing so hard and my sides still ache today. I needed that in the worst way.

In less than a month the private blog will be able to become public. Yay!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Great Nightlight Debacle

Last night SK couldn't find the nightlight for the bathroom. Neither of them knew where it was. Uh huh. I told both of them that they could return the nightlight without consequence if they did so before bedtime. No takers. I looked for it high and low last night and couldn't find it. This morning I announced that if it wasn't found today that neither of them would have a nightlight tonight. J looked all over her room and bath and couldn't find it. So did SK.

Several times today J announced that SK should look all over her room including her heavy blanket (weighted blanket). Anyone suspicious yet???? At dinner J asked if she could search SK's room for it. I told her yes but that meant that SK could search her room. After a few minutes of soul searching she said that would be fine. I patted both girls down to be sure no one was hiding it on their person and sat down in the hallway between their rooms for both of them to search.

J made a great pretense of searching and then lifted SK's weighted blanket. Lo and behold it was there! Little stinker. I asked her to give the details and at first she tried to lie about it some more then finally fessed up that she put it on top of cabinet in the bathroom (where it was supposed to be), then she put it behind the picture on top of the cabinet in the bathroom, THEN she decided to put it in Sk's room.

So she lied about it all last night and all day today even after I gave them both several opportunities to fess up without consequences. Of course I knew that it was J all along from all the previous attempts to throw SK under the bus.

So tonight J's the one without a nightlight for taking the light and she had early bedtime for the massive amounts of lying. SK chose to let J make up her bed tomorrow instead of getting the rest of J's skittles. Personally I think I would've taken the skittles (don't care for skittles but candy is candy right?) and ran.

Mystery solved.

On to other pressing matters....I now have RSS Feed. At least I think I do if I set it up right. That remains to be seen. The button's over there on the right. Why do I want this? What's the advantages? What's the difference between following and RSS Feed? I'm challenged in the department so would someone please enlighten me?

I subscribed to PW's RSS Feed and it put it in google reader 4 hours before the regular PW subscription. Is this part of the lure of RSS???? Do you have to notify feedburner when you post or does it do it automatically? Can you tell I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing here????? Enquiring minds want to know.

Hoping l didn't screw things up.

In other news....did you know that you can get free internet over k!ndle? Not wi-fi like with the itouch. K!ndle is over cell phone towers and did I mention free? It's in the experimental stages but still....

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Chicken Piccata

Adapted from Ina G*rten

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I've also used chicken tenders)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon water
1 cup (or more) panko crumbs
olive oil
1 and 3/4 sticks of unsalted butter
1/2 to 3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (appox 6 small lemons)
Zest of two or three lemons
1 cup Riesling
1 jar capers (rinsed)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Place each chicken breast in ziploc bag and pound your frustrations out (with a rolling pin) until the chicken is 1/4" thick.

Mix the flour, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper in a shallow plate. In a second plate, beat the eggs and 1 tablespoon of water together. Place the panko crumbs on a third plate. Dip each chicken breast first in the flour, then dip in the egg and finally dip in panko crumb mixture.

Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the chicken breasts and cook for 2 minutes on each side, until browned. Place them on a cookie sheet and allow them to bake for 5 to 10 minutes while you make the sauce.

Wipe out the skillet. Over medium heat, melt butter and then add the lemon juice, wine, and capers. Salt & pepper to taste. Boil over high heat until reduced in half, about 2 minutes.

Serve chicken breast over angel hair pasta or rice. Add a spoonful of sauce over the top of the chicken.

Fabulous dinner in less than 20 minutes.

You're welcome.

Friday, November 13, 2009


Testing a new toy. Could be a new addiction.....

- Posted using BlogPress from my iTouch

Thursday, November 12, 2009


So I've been on a cooking binge. Not helping the waistline any. At all. Last night I made the decision to never bake again. I made a pan of biscuits. Real biscuits that you roll and cut out. I should know by now that baking and I do not get along. Normally I make drop biscuits and they are usually pretty good. Expect me to knead, roll and cut? Total disaster. Anything with's the kiss of death. Hockey pucks are softer and lighter. Ugh.

Today I made homemade potato chips to go with our grilled ham and pepper jack cheese sandwiches. Used the mandoline. Note to self: There's a reason it comes with a vegetable holder. Took off the tip of my thumb and part of my nail. At the same spot that I hit the space bar. Dang it. I was emailing Sheri, typing as fast as I could and screaming on the inside every time I hit the space bar. Bleeding for over an hour. Dang.

Tomorrow might be a good day to eat out.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Birthday Girl

J officially turned 9 on Monday. She had a great day and looking back over the year it's amazing to see how much progress she's made. It doesn't mean there aren't challenges but amazing nonetheless.
Last year on her birthday, she was still in size 6x clothing. She stayed in size 6x from 10/23/06 (when she came home) until February 2009. 3 months into me being a stay at home mom. In February she went from a 6x to a 7/8 then in June she went to a 9/10. At her last doctor visit (May) she was 4' 2". On her birthday she measured 4' 5". Lots of growing going on..... It was almost as if she refused to grow until she attached. The power of the human spirit is an amazing thing.

Very low key day but she had lots of phone calls with birthday wishes. There were so many in fact, that I forgot to take her to the last ortho visit. That doctor is going to hate me when we finally get there. The first time it was scheduled I had the flu, the 2nd time J was having a terrible day and I couldn't get her there and now this one. Lovely. Stellar parenting I'm telling ya. We're set to try again next Monday.

The cake turned out pretty well considering I made it. It resembled brownies or fudge instead of cake. Not sure if that's the intended way to turn out but it was still very good. Rich, rich, rich.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Amazingly Enough....

Starting at 5:30 AM, I actually did clean out the closet. Later I moved on to the garage. Dia & wouldn't recognize them. :) I was actually going to post before and after photos but honestly I was too embarrassed about the before. The garbage man is going to faint.

Maybe next weekend I'll start on the "catch all room" in the basement. Maybe......

We did start the day with PW's Sour Cream Pancakes, Breakfast Potatoes and bacon. Friday we had her breakfast burritos. Can you tell I'm loving her cookbook???? I have been really bored lately so it's nice to have a change of pace.

J was supposed to be outside playing while I was cooking dinner. Looking out the window I "caught" her raking the street instead. What has gotten into my girl????? You won't catch me complaining!

She finished watching Sound of M*sic tonight and was happy as a clam.

I have just finished baking her birthday cake on the down low. (Yes...I know we celebrated at the beach but decided at the last minute to do a cake and have my parents over for dessert.) The first birthday cake I've ever baked. Seriously. I don't care for cakes (and I'm a horrible baker) so my family typically gets pies. Baking is too serious. You have to follow the recipe or things turn out badly. I'm more of a pinch of this and a dash of that kinda girl. Tonight I lived on the wild side and made PW's Best Chocolate Sheet Cake Ever. Hoping it doesn't kill anyone. Keep your fingers crossed.

3 teeth under her pillow (actually in a box on her bed side table. She's too light a sleeper to put under her pillow). She lost one on the plane on the way to Vegas (the 2nd time she's lost a tooth on the plane), one in her sleep last weekend and one last night. Since I'm a horrible tooth fairy I'm just getting around to it. Fairy dust coming and some bucks.

Saturday, November 7, 2009


Huge workday around the house. I threw away tons of stuff and cleaned closets and cabinets. Somehow stuff accumulates and in the middle of the night it multiplies like rabbits.

All my stacks of paperwork has been put away in the proper places. (Nothing short of a miracle.)

Laundry washed and put away. Sheets washed and beds made up.

Kitchen cabinets cleaned out.

Laundry room and laundry room closet cleaned.

Two chests in my bedroom were cleaned out.

I can finally see the seat of a chair in my bedroom. The first time in months.

My closet floor was cleaned out. Unfortunately my closet floor accumulates the majority of the "crap". It was a scary place. More clothes will be removed tomorrow. Typing for accountability.

All kitchen cabinets and pantry cleaned out and reorganized.

Microwave cleaned.

Oven cleaned.

Toaster oven cleaned.

All kitchen counters and counter stuff cleaned.

My bathroom was given a major cleaning. Even my shower which I loathe doing.

Garage (another scary place) will hopefully be the recipient of some time well spent tomorrow.

J worked like a soldier today. I was so proud. Working really hard and she had a blast.

She swept the whole driveway, sidewalk and front porch.

Vacuumed the whole house (even the carpeted rooms!).

Dusted the whole house.

Washed the windows on the door into the garage and the front door.

She swept the deck, raked the backyard and had tons of fun jumping in her pile of leaves. Earlier in the day I asked her why she was working so hard and she said, "so we can have a clean house and I want to do something really nice for you." Awwwwwww..... Then she went on to list all of the things above that she was going to do. I actually teared up. Asked her why she thought I was crying and she said, "they're tears of joy, mom." I thought her list was a really nice sentiment but never thought in a million years that she would actually do it. She did. Without any direction from me.

Tonight we celebrated all our hard work by watching the S o u n d of M*sic and eating chocolate cake in front of the TV. Unheard of in our house.

Right before bed she asked what could we do tomorrow to accomplish some more. I'm thinking sleeping late would be a good start. :) Late is 8 AM at our house. The garage and the rest of my closet can wait till the afternoon (or next month.....). :)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Joys of a Full Moon

I pulled over tonight and took this photo. Anyone else wishing it would start waning? Then throw in a time change. Yikes.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Claudia's Book

I've had Claudia's book since the first week it was released. However, I was 10 books behind so I loaned it to our AT to borrow while I was completing all the books I needed to return. Kristy loved it so much that she had to buy her own copy. She also asked permission (before her copy arrived) to loan my copy to several other people that she thought really needed to read it.

Last week she returned it to me and I saved it till last night for my weekend reading. I started and finished it last night. It was that good. Halfway into it I knew there was no way I could go to bed without finishing it. Excellent read! As with her blog, I am impressed with Claudia's "realness", honesty and humor. Her passion for her children and for finding homes for kids is contagious!

Everyone involved in foster care or adoption should really read this book. Buy it! You won't be disappointed. If you're in the process of adoption or just contemplating foster care or adoption, buy the book. You need this in your arsenal. She also had many wonderful tips for parents in the process of finding their children. How I wish I'd had her book before I started this journey. So much of it I had to learn the hard way. Persistence, persistence, persistence. Contacts, nagging, being the squeaky wheel is all part of the equation. I guess that means she wasn't too mad at me when I kept bugging her (so she would bug Sk's worker) about Special K. :)