Saturday, May 2, 2009

Ta Da

And with that I am finished with the Kid's school carnival cookies...

I ended up NOT packaging them cutely... just in folded over snack sized ziplocs... sue me.

Now we just have to go paint faces for an hour and man the bouncy house.

Not that I'm resentful or anything... just that only 3 out of 16 Kindergarten families signed up to do ANYTHING. See why we need a new class president? Someone who's a little more of an overachiever and a little less of a pot smoker?

Thankfully a little bird told me that the events you staff your children get to do for free... so... our full schedule is not exactly self sacrificial.

Here's hoping we win the 1K off tuition raffle tomorrow!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Just Cause I Don't Have Time To Sit Down And Write...

Doesn't mean I won't find a way to reveal every personal detail of my life.


I don't know why I always feel like I must apologize for being busy... but there you have it.

This week has been one of those blink and it's over weeks. And of course I am juggling icing and cookies trying to get everything I need to done for Kid's school carnival tomorrow. I have, as of today, officially thrown my hat in for class parent. Which also means that Kid is going to return next year. We just got her public school placement... and it was not our choice school... so... we'll try again next year and still hope and pray some miracle befalls us and she gets into that charter school.
As disappointing as all that was... at the same time I'm just happy to have the decision set and to move on.

Today was also Kid's May Day Festival...

Okay... I really must go ice those cookies!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Update

Sure Maybe Not Technically Organic...

But most certainly amazing, entertaining, and in some circles delicious.

Growing up my mother made some sort of take on rainbow Jello. I have NEVER forgotten it. It's one of those things that is, for some reason, always in the back of my mind. It left a huge impression on me... I was probably younger than Kid when she made it. I remember it in the square white pyrex casserole dish with the flowers on the side and someone going in for the first scoop. (Hopefully my mom does not comment that she never had that dish or this whole post will lose a lot of street cred)

Later in my life my (then) stepmother's family always served a disgusting version of this that was layered with Cool Whip. Don't start hating on me because I despise Cool Whip... it isn't real food...and I believe I famously said at one Thanksgiving table (maybe I was 7?!) something along the lines of "What is this?!" when given Cool Whip (maybe I said it was revolting or gagged or something more hilarious than just "what is this?!" because I was scarred by the uproarious laughter my comment provoked from the adults... so scarred that that's really all I took away from it. It was kind of like when I was left alone with my great grandmother in the bathroom...).

But I digress...

The other day I was in the baking aisle and was filled with a sudden overwhelming need to really impress my children. And please... to a 2 year old and 6 year old Jello is impressive as is. Jello made into a rainbow is a fucking miracle (pardon my French... but I tend to get a little spunky after ingesting a whole lot of sugar).

This process requires a little bit of patience so be forewarned. In about 10-12 hours (each layer needs about 2 hours to set) you too can amaze your children, your spouse... or maybe just yourself (although it makes a hell of a lot of jello for one person). So... giddy up.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Just Walked Into The Bathroom...

To find both girls trying to lick their own "moomies".

That's after I found Baby at the stove putting a pan on a burner. Oh did I mention the stove was ON and that there was a flame under another pot RIGHT next to the one she put on?!
That was a close one.

Then she found a box of buttons and came in the kitchen and spilled them all over the floor? And of course I hadn't vacuumed yet so that I had to pick them up out of the myriad crumbs and crap on the floor.

And TWO equals the number of times I've found Baby standing on our MARBLE counters today.

Whoever said staying home was boring?

The moral of this story is that when you are not engaged with your kids 100% they will find a way to engage you.

So much for taking a mental health day...

Where In The World Is Mrs F?

I'm here. Things are going on.

On top of that Baby has not been sleeping and it's running my ragged.

Oh and there is the bake sale stuff I need to make this week (why oh why did I overextend myself?!!)

And there is stuff.

Some of it deep, some of it petty... it all depends on how you look at it I suppose.

Either way I'm feeling misunderstood and kind of trapped in a label someone else has assigned.

You know how sometimes no matter what you do, or say, or feel some people will just always see it as something else?

And it's like no matter what you do, or say, or feel you can't change their perception of what they think you did, or said, or felt?

Yeah. I'm there.

Monday, April 27, 2009

This Week The Plan

Remember this time last year? Blogging definitely has it's seasons and as things quickly move from Spring to Summer here I am needed outside. Away from the computer... defending the girls against bugs of all sorts, applying sunscreen, cleaning up popsicle drips, drinking iced coffee, and showing off my boobs.

Because these are officially popsicle days.

And for those of you of my generation I would like to inform you of the greatest discovery as of late (potentially of my lifetime)... they have brought back Jello Pudding Pops! Okay it seems that they brought them back 2 years ago... but who knew? Obviously not me. They are now shaped like fudgsicles and made by Popsicle. You can thank me later.

The things you need to know about last week:

  • I lost three pounds... 5 to go to my ideal weight.

  • We kind of cleaned up some of the house. We have a significant amount more to go... but we had a good weekend and had a lot of fun family time. 

  • I've been walking to get Kid everyday from school... despite the ridiculous heat and blazing sun. It means an extra 5 miles a week for me and 2.5 for her. 

Onto this week:


Monday - Steak bites, potatoes & onions, corn w/cilantro butter & scallions, salad

Tuesday - Scallion & Ginger Shrimp w/Noodles

Wednesday - Cornflake Crusted Tilapia & Coleslaw (make extra as fish sticks for fish tacos)

Thursday - Sauteed Chicken & Zucchini in garlic & parmesan noodles

Friday - Pizza & Salad

Saturday - Fish Tacos

Sunday - Steak Sandwiches

Diet & Exercise:
I am still food journalling and working out. In addition to walking to get Kid I am aiming for 7 days of cardio on the treadmill. Life gets in the way but I like to average out at about 5 hours a week. I also desperately want to get my pilates reformer set back up and to get back into my routine.

Errands & Chores:

Monday - grocery shop

Tuesday - vacuum

Wednesday - get clothes put away

Thursday - clean off desk

Friday - get pots & soil for new plants

Weekend - clean bathrooms

A special picture that I know will make some of you laugh...

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Recipe Redo Roundup

I've had a lot of recipe revisions as of late... I can't even remember if I've put them up already or not... so forgive me if this is not new info. If you don't already know I am committed to making homemade, healthy, and fast dinners SEVEN FREAKING NIGHTS A WEEK. I don't post a recipe unless everyone in the family gives it a big thumbs and we have had it multiple times. I don't think I've ever posted a recipe that takes longer than 30 minutes from start to finish... even with kids interrupting my mojo. In fact most of the recipes I post take about 15 - 20 minutes. Not sure why I shared that... just a little FYI I guess... and some encouragement that anyone can do this (without going totally insane).

The Redos:

Remember my Brown Sugar & Ginger Salmon (which is simple, fast, and DELICIOUS)... well... I've adopted the same technique and just changed the flavors up. So read the original recipe for cooking times and prep info. I buy frozen wild sockeye salmon filets. I buy them in pre-portioned 6 oz filets... I cook two for our family of 4 and divide them into 3 oz portions for serving. The recipe amounts are listed per 6 oz filet... adjust according to your salmon filet size.

Honey & Orange Glazed Salmon
salt & pepper salmon filets
drizzle filets with honey (about 1.5 t for a 6 oz portion)
sprinkle with finely grated orange zest (about 1/2 t per 6 oz portion)

Honey Mustard Glazed Salmon
salt & pepper salmon filets
rub dijon mustard onto each filet (1/2 t per 6 oz portion)
drizzle honey over mustard (about 1/2 t per 6 oz portion)

The kids go CRAZY for these two versions.

Remember my Salmon Noodle Casserole? (aka Tuna Noodle Casserole... I just prefer to serve my kids salmon since it isn't mercury laden... but you can use tuna) Well that was merely a slight redo on the traditional recipe I grew up with and it used Campbell's Cream of Mushroom soup... which is not only not organic but has MSG. So this recipe was tabled for awhile until I found a way to substitute organic ingredients.

Here are my new substitutions...

The resulting recipe is actually even better than the original.
Because this soup is not as concentrated I use 1/3 of the can. I pour the rest into an ice cube tray and store the cubes in a freezer bag. When I make the casserole the next time I just throw half the soup cubes in my casserole dish and microwave them to defrost and then proceed with the recipe.
This brand of salmon is FANTASTIC, much more moist and flavorful, and breaks down better in the sauce... plus I feel good about the fishery.
Because the soup is thinner I just mix it with 1/4 c mayo and 1.5 t dijon mustard (no milk is necessary). I blend in the drained salmon and season with salt and pepper.
I also often throw in about a cup of diced mushrooms (Kid loves mushrooms!) and toss with the noodles and bake as originally directed.

And a new one (to be posted with photo just as soon as I make it again):

This past week I threw together a fabulous mexican inspired dish that the kids loved. It was a good change up for my turkey & black bean taco filling...
2 T olive oil
3/4 c diced red onion (half a med onion)
2 c frozen corn kernels
1 can drained black beans
8 oz coarsely chopped rotisserie chicken (great use for that weekly chicken!)
seasonings: garlic powder, ground oregano, lots of cumin, salt & pepper
(sorry but I seasoned to taste and didn't measure)

Heat oil in pan, add onion and corn and cook until onions are translucent and corn is heated through. Add drained beans and chicken and season well.
Serve with seasoned rice.
I divided this into two dinners.
One half makes 4 dinner sized meals of 1/2 c rice with 1 c chicken filling for 330 calories.
There will be half left to use again another night as taco filling.

As for seasoned rice... I used to buy the prepackaged boxes of rice (Near East brand)... but realized that I could do it myself for a lot cheaper.
The key is to remember that the spice packets they include have a lot of spice & salt in them... don't be stingy or it won't be as good. I make my rice on the stove top with the basic recipe of 1 part rice to 1.75 parts liquid (I fine 1:2 is too much liquid). I almost always use half chicken stock and half water for my liquid. I add 1T of oil (usually olive but I'll use sesame for asian flavored rice) to the cold pot of rice & liquid then add seasonings (garlic & onion powder, cumin, chili powder & ground oregano, and salt for mexican flavored rice) bring pot to a boil, turn down to a simmer cover and cook until liquid is absorbed.

Next time I make these recipes I'll measure the seasonings... but with a little tasting as you go you should be able to get it right.
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