Friday, February 22, 2013

Seven Quick Food-ish Takes Featuring a T-Rex



--- 1 ---

Scott's outpatient procedure went fine. The worst part was the ice storm that blew through in the wee hours of this morning...my compulsive 15-minute cushion was actually useful because it took both of us working full-speed for 10 minutes to get the car free of its icy prison. The roads weren't too bad, though.

Also, Scott doesn't do anything interesting coming off anesthesia. He just acts like you woke him up from REM sleep and then doesn't remember anything afterwards (apparently he doesn't remember much between going under at 7:30 in the morning and waking up in his own bed at 2:30 in the afternoon). But sometimes he doesn't remember things that happen when he's woken up from REM sleep either. (He might deny this, but he wouldn't know, would he?)

--- 2 ---

Shortly after the procedure was first scheduled, we discussed soft foods. I suggested applesauce and yogurt. Scott said I should get "kid yogurt" because we both like the texture better. (Really. The texture of regular yogurt is just gross. Kiddie yogurts and smoothies are where it's at.)

So yesterday at the store I picked up some strawberry Dora The Explorer yogurt. And it is awesome. (Yes, I picked up enough for me. It's not fair that I don't get any yogurt just because I didn't have to have a gastrointestinal procedure, right?)

I commented on Facebook that it felt like I should have a tiny plastic spoon for my yogurt, and two of my friends commented: "Did you check your backpack?" and "You did, but it got swiped."

My friends are awesome.

--- 3 ---

I showed Scott the "former meth lab house" (mentioned in this take) and he thought it looked pretty awesome, albeit with terrible paint.

We're crazy, but we're crazy in awesomely compatible ways. :)

--- 4 ---


I discovered this on Facebook the other day. I think it's basically the funniest thing ever. I made sure to show it to Scott, since one of his favorite movie characters of all time is Rex from Toy Story. ("I can't press the fire button and jump at the same time!") He was suitably amused.

--- 5 ---

Last July, I made these muffins and they spilled all over my oven and made a horrible mess and traumatized me. (No, really. I'm easily traumatized.)

Well, a couple weeks ago I started cutting up some sad and wrinkly apples we had in the fridge and decided that it was time to try apple muffins again. So I did, incorporating some of the suggestions provided by the highest rated negative commenter. (I made 12 muffins and reduced the butter in the topping. I used lots of apples, though, because I like my muffins fruity.) And they turned out awesome. I'd post pictures, but my camera is like 4 feet away and I have a migraine so I don't want to move more than necessary. They basically look like the picture on that recipe page anyway.

--- 6 ---

Yesterday, we had chili planned for dinner. Halfway through browning the beef, I realized that the only beans we had were dry. In the pantry. Uncooked.

It turns out you don't actually have to follow the directions on the bag about soaking and simmering and all that junk. Boil those suckers for an hour or two and toss them in your chili and it totally works.

--- 7 ---

I asked Scott what else I should post about and he said that the only interesting thing he's done this week is taught himself network programming. I'm not actually sure what that means, but I think it has something to do with how he proudly announced earlier that he can now code a browser from scratch and code a server from scratch. Apparently we like making things from scratch around here.

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Friday, February 15, 2013

Seven Very Random Quick Takes



--- 1 ---

Scott had a gastroenterologist appointment again and lost 1.5 pounds. I punished him by making him eat a cupcake.

Seriously, though, guys, I don't have a paradigm for "people who can't gain weight." Scott doesn't share my passionate love for food, but he eats as much as he can stand (and then I force-feed him a cupcake for good measure), so I don't get why he's still hanging on to the BMI chart by his fingernails. (I don't actually care about BMI that much. I'd rather he could regulate his own body temperature and fight off minor illnesses in less than a week. But we'll use BMI as a stand-in.)

Also, he has to have an outpatient procedure done in the near future. You should pray for him. You should probably pray more for me; he's used to having his digestive system messed with by now but I get freaked out by modern medicine. (It's good stuff, don't get me wrong, it's just...freaky.)

--- 2 ---

On Tuesday we went and had Fat Tuesday Cupcakes with Scott's family. Middle Younger Brother was talking about his college choices (he's got some very good scholarships, hooray for him!) and then Youngest Younger Brother was talking about how he kind of dreads participating in the homeschool co-op because apparently he has a reputation as "that kid who could totally teach the classes." (Just having his three older brothers to live up to would be enough of a challenge, but all the Cobblers will readily point out that YYB is the smartest. "You think I know history facts? My littlest brother knows, like, ten times as many history facts." He does, too. I seriously worry about what's going to happen to him when he goes to college and finds out there's nothing for him to learn there.)

Mr. Cobbler didn't see why this was a problem, so I quickly said, "That's because when you have a reputation, then you get a ninety-seven on your history test and people are like, 'Ohh, what's wrong?' and you're like, 'Nothing's WRONG. I got a NINETY-SEVEN.'"

YYB and MYB both agreed that that was the worst.

I'm sure you're all very sad for us and our terrible problems.

--- 3 ---

Typical YYB: "If somebody tries to sell you vitamin water that has Vitamin K in it, look at it and if it's clear say, 'There's no Vitamin K in here, liar!' Because everybody knows Vitamin K is only soluble in fat."

(This was prompted by me mocking the nutrition information on the side of a container of sprinkles.)

--- 4 ---
What I'm making for dinner:


Vegetable Soup
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
2 tbsp dried minced onion
1 1/2 cup kidney beans (dry--pre-cooked and frozen)
6 cups vegetable broth
1 tbsp Italian seasoning
1 sm can diced tomatoes
1 lb frozen mixed vegetables
½ cup dried lentils

Throw them all in a pot and cook until the lentils are al dente. There used to be more steps (and fresh onion), but I like cutting out extra steps.


--- 5 ---

My mother and I are "playing the Realtor.com game", which involves looking at houses on...you guessed it...Realtor.com. Sometimes we make fun of them. Sometimes we plot moves out to the country. (I think Mom is getting bored after almost 9 years in the same house. Dad says he's not leaving their current house except in a pine box, though.)

I found a 4+ bedroom farmhouse on 4 acres for 85k. Granted, it looks kind of like Dweej's house in the before pictures, but I think it's cool.

Mom says it looks like it used to be a meth lab and if I ever buy one of those houses she's going to have the grandkids sleep over at her house until I make it less hovel-like.

I told her she has no imagination.

This is, believe it or not, how we bond.

--- 6 ---

Now I'm researching phones with answering machines. We have voice mail, in that somebody can call our phone and leave a message and later that day or the next week or never we can call the voice mail box and get their message. I want a phone that does two things, though:

1. I want to be able to hear the person talking on the answering machine as they leave their message. This way, I can decide whether to jump up and grab it and talk to the person after all. (Normally I don't answer the phone unless it's about time for Scott to call and say he needs picked up at the bus stop. I got THREE calls that weren't him today at around that time and would have loved to have known that so I could let them go to voicemail.)

2. I want the phone to beep or have a flashing light or something when there's a new message. That way I don't have to go to the trouble of actually checking the voicemail every time I go anywhere. I can just look at the display or whatever.

How many hours do you think I'm going to have to babysit to afford such a contraption?

(Our current phone was a hand-me-down from Younger Elder Brother. We appreciate it muchly, but it's about time for an upgrade.)

A few minutes later: Cool, Target has one for $25. It got a terrible review, though.

--- 7 ---

I made a Valentine for Teresa. She asked. Anyway, this is what it looked like:


It has staples on the side because I messed up the inside and didn't want to redo the front. So I cut off the back half of the card and stapled a new back half onto it. I'm hoping 6-year-olds don't notice those sorts of things.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Seven Quick Takes in which we remember that wishing for blog fodder is unwise


--- 1 ---

This past Saturday I made some last-minute plans with two of my household sisters. We went out to the mall and had hot chocolate/frozen yogurt (I was warm in the crowded mall) and got caught up. Sister 1 lives on the other side of the state, but was in town for a wedding. Sister 2 lives in Romania (she works at an orphanage there), but was visiting her family here for the holidays. Anyway, an offhand Facebook status resulted in us making plans to get together. It was pretty awesome.

At one point, we got on the subject of culling the Facebook friend list--because there's always that person you had to do a group project with freshman year and haven't spoken to since. I mentioned that sometimes the little birthday reminder feature in the upper corner will offer up a name and I will think, "Why are we friends? I don't even like you." and defriend them about a week later, because defriending somebody on their birthday is a little mean.

Sister 2 thought that was hilarious. "I don't even like you," she repeated to herself, laughing loudly.

Social awkwardness: Half the time it makes people mad at you, and the other half of the time they think it's hilarious.

--- 2 ---

On Sunday, I was very tired. I needed to make dinner, but the kitchen was a mess. So I asked my husband to unload and reload the dishwasher. And he did.

I made pork chops, and then ate a pork chop, and then Scott went to get himself a pork chop and discovered that about 3/4 of the pork chops were...not done. (I must need to visit the optometrist, because they looked done to me.) He pointed out this fact and I whinily replied that I was too tired to deal with it. So he re-cooked them all himself. Then he convinced me to sit and read Calvin and Hobbes with him to make me feel better.

Also, on Monday he brushed the snow off the car without even being asked. (Most days, I go down and warm up the car while he gathers up his stuff and therefore brush the snow off myself, but on Monday he was ready faster than usual.)

I think I'll keep him.

--- 3 ---

Middle Younger Brother went to a scholarship competition last week. The presenters kept talking about how even if you don't win, it's still good to come because you make lifelong friendships at these things. My mother-in-law kept telling everybody that they weren't kidding when they said that; one of her older sons had met his wife at a scholarship competition.

I just think that's cute.

(Six years today. I wonder what 17-year-old me would think of everything that happened in the last six years.)

--- 4 ---

This is random (as if anything on this blog isn't...) but have I mentioned that I LOOOOOVE the shower here? It's about eleventy billion years old, which means that it's not environmentally friendly, which means that it can get up enough water pressure to actually produce a nice soothing massage effect. I am going to be seriously upset when we have to leave this apartment. (We have no immediate plans, but realistically a 1-bedroom apartment is not going to be our forever home.)

Incidentally, Scott and I are in for a rude awakening when we start paying our own water bill, aren't we?

--- 5 ---

Last night Scott and I watched Jumanji, as part of my project to make him culturally literate. (Cultural Literacy Lesson 1 was The Lion King. Seriously, he was 23 years old and had never seen it! His first reaction was, "And you think Majora's Mask is trippy." But he liked it in spite of the psychedelic musical numbers.)

Anyway. Scott liked the movie and thought it was hilarious and now he knows what I mean when I say, "We don't have to do it all at once. It's not like Jumanji." Ironically enough, that's usually what I say when we're starting a movie at 9:00, but last night we decided to stay up until 11:00 to watch the whole movie in one go anyway.

--- 6 ---

Tonight, I was going to pick up Scott from the bus stop as usual. I tried to unlock the doors using the little keychain remote and it didn't work. "Huh," I thought, "perhaps the remote is out of batteries." So I unlocked the door with the key (rockin' it old school over here) and tried to start the car.

It wasn't the keychain that was out of battery power, as it turns out.

I called Scott's family and his mother agreed to go fetch him, and then I called AAA and the nice AAA man came and jumped my battery and reminded me to not leave the headlights on all day. (The auto headlights aren't working right. Yeah, we're going to get it looked at.)

It actually turned out to be kind of a non-event. It makes me feel like a Real Grownup--look at me dealing with my non-starting car like a boss! Granted, Scott's mom did help us out, but if she hadn't been available he'd have just had to wait a few extra minutes in a nice warm fast food place. (It's even a fish place, so if he'd been starving to death he could have gotten a nice Friday dinner while he waited.)

--- 7 ---

Matthew would like you to know that he takes breakfast very seriously.


Also, he is almost 15 months old and still has ambiguously light-colored eyes. I am calling that a win for Team Blue. (Dad and I have blue eyes; Mom and Andrea have brown. For some reason Andrea and I were always really competitive about this. Then Teresa came along with brown eyes and the delicate balance of the universe was temporarily disturbed. But now Matthew makes us even again.)


For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Postscript to my husband: I ended up deleting the take that had a Stranger Than Fiction reference. No scavenger hunt for you.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Seven Quick Takes mostly about food



--- 1 ---

It turns out I had forgotten to buy chicken bouillon, which for me is kind of an essential component of chicken soup. Oops. So my final grocery spending for January was actually $186.49. Do I still win?

--- 2 ---

Speaking of food, there were about 2 hours this week when I seriously considered doing Atkins for Lent. A couple of things dissuaded me, besides the fact that I'm a total wimp and love carbs.

A. My husband said forlornly, "I like pasta..." when I suggested that we just kind of skip bread and potatoes and pasta. I'm going to blame that on his little bit of Italian blood, since normally he's pretty apathetic about carbs. Anyway, aside from the fact that I like to make my husband happy, he's so scrawny that putting him on a diet-by-association would probably go against the Geneva convention.

(When he gains another 10 pounds or so I'll stop worrying about how skinny he is. At his current rate of weight gain that should take about 2 years, as long as he doesn't get too many stomach viruses. Yes, his metabolism is totally insane.)

B. I'm not going to try recipes that require me to buy special Atkins products. Nice try, marketing team, but no. Also, I don't care how many times the FDA tested it, Splenda is gross.

So, I'm just going to recommit myself to eating low carb (but the carbs that I do eat will have REAL SUGAR), and I'm going to try to balance out my carb intake a little bit. I have a feeling that it doesn't do me a whole lot of good to cut back on carbs if the carbs I cut back are vegetables and milk. Contrary to what my German genes are telling me, man cannot live on bread and sausage alone.

--- 3 ---

I finished editing my novel on Wednesday and sent it out to Scott and Mari last night. I had a nightmare last night about them not liking it. Oh well. That's what fourth or fifth drafts are for.

By the way, Mari has a new blog. You should check it out. Then she can have about five readers instead of three.

--- 4 ---

I'm caught up on laundry and more-or-less caught up on dishes after the plague we had for a couple of weeks, but from where I'm sitting I can see this thick layer of dust on the edge of the ceiling fan blade, so I'm thinking I've got some catching up to do still.

--- 5 ---

I really need to work on writing these quick takes throughout the week so I don't find myself scraping the bottom of the barrel on Friday night. I like participating in my little blogging community, but the most exciting thing that happened to me today was finding a stray cart in the Aldi parking lot. Free quarters are awesome.

I also got a pot roast on sale ($3.50 a pound, which isn't great, but I had a hankering for pot roast), and a big bag of cashews also on sale. Cashews are the best.

Oh, and I successfully went to a particular restaurant and purchased a gift card as a belated Christmas present for my in-laws. I talked to a stranger and everything, you guys. I'm like some kind of wizard.

--- 6 ---

My crowdsourcing questions of the week:

1. Are there any lunches out there that have the convenience of lunch meat but with a little less processed-ness? Scott is fine with eating lunchmeat 4 days a week, but I just think it's kind of gross and want to give him better food. But without actually doing any more work.

My Facebook friends all tell me that I need to just deal and make dinner more often so I can pack him leftovers. I am wondering what my blog readers think, though.

2. Are there any forms of exercise that don't require me to leave my tiny apartment? I am too cheap to buy a gym membership and too timid to go to the park down the street and walk the 5k trail. (I'd do that if Scott could go with me, but he's busy.)

Probably the solution to that is to vacuum my apartment more than once in a blue moon. Vacuuming is aerobic, right?

--- 7 ---

To reward you for getting all the way to the end of this post, here is a picture of my brother in dinosaur pajamas:


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