Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Sunday, November 09, 2008
Saturday, November 08, 2008
Friday, November 07, 2008
Thursday, November 06, 2008
I wouldn't be posting such a boring update if it wasn't for Nablopomo!
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
Then my mom called. I don't intend to draw family drama into this blog, so I won't write out a 30-page dissertation, but basically she feels that it is unacceptable for me to nurse in public or in other people's homes without a blanket. I simply do not agree. Intellectually I can see that side. But my spirit and my emotions don't. I just don't live in a world where nursing uncovered is anything but wonderful. I anticipate that I will never understand the other world. I know my world is different than everyone else's, but I don't anticipate it ever changing. This phone call went on for 27 minutes.
Before/during/after the wonderful call I ate a big bowl of oatmeal and it seemed to be OK. Eventually the stomach rumbles came back and I went to the bathroom and waited to throw up. Nothing. So I went back downstairs and felt nauseated again. So I went upstairs and waited to throw up. Nothing. So I left. As soon as I stepped outside I was able to throw up. We have two buildings and of course three people were outside right at the opportune time. A woman saw me and said "Oh, I thought you were throwing up." I looked up from my throw up bowl and said "I am!" She said "You're pregnant!!" This thought had crossed my mind earlier, and I said "I hope not!!" I immediately felt terrible and apologized to the possible zygote/fetus. My husband will be starting school and working full time in January and all the household responsibilities will fall on me. So I didn't feel that now was the best time to be pregnant. But on the other hand, BAYBEEEEEEEESSSS!! I love me some cuddly babies. So on the way home, I bought a pregnancy test. This was really stupid, as the nausea was really nothing like pregnancy nausea, seeing as it was accompanied by a whole host of symptoms. I took the test anyway and was slightly disappointed at the negative.
My husband and baby were still in bed, so I went in there and tried to nurse the baby so we could all sleep. My husband said he just needed 1/2 hour of sleep and then he'd be fine. The baby was bashing him over the head periodically, so I suggested that husband lock Baby and me in the room and he go out to the couch for one hour. Then he could take Baby and I could sleep uninterrupted. He left and I spent the next couple hours being bashed and scratched by un-tired Baby. By then it was time for husband to go to work, so I never got my uninterrupted sleep. After this Baby did fall asleep and we both rested for a while.
Now I've been trying to get up and pack for the past 2 hours but haven't gathered the energy yet. I have such an extreme lack of character and fortitude. I can't even push through a little bit of nausea and body aches to pack a stupid suitcase. I am trying to convince myself to do it NOW. My wonderful amazing precious 6-year old offered to help me. If I do it now and get it over with, I can rest/sleep the rest of the evening and then maybe I won't be miserable on the airplane tomorrow. Yeah, I can hope.
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
In other demoralizing shopping news, I tried to find some pearl hair accessories at the mall. There was not a SINGLE barrette/hair clip with pearls on it in the ENTIRE MALL. Since when did pearls become passé? I specifically wanted a pearl French twist comb in case I wear a French twist for the wedding. No dice. I bought a silver and diamond one. Yeah, THAT'S going to go well with my otherwise ivory/gold ensemble. Sigh.
I want to be pretty. I want to be fashionable. I want to look put together. But then I go to the mall and remember why I just don't try in the first place. Perhaps if I had more resources ($$$$) I wouldn't feel this way. If that was the case, blowing $20 on a pair of shoes that don't work wouldn't even faze me.
Monday, November 03, 2008
I ended up picking these shoes to go with the original blue dress.
Then we switched to the ivory/gold dress and obviously silver strappy shoes wouldn't work. So we switched to the tan shoes shown in yesterday's pictures. (Also here)
At the same time I bought the silver shoes, I needed some black daily shoes. By 'daily', I mean literally every single day. They need to work equally well with dresses and jeans for work and church. I ended up picking these Mary Janes. The stitching around the top of the shoe rubs on the top of my foot. I've tried little gel pads, but they are annoying.
Today I was at Burlington Coat Factory and picked up another pair of shoes that will actually be comfortable. I chose the ones shown on this page in the upper right corner (Mootsies Tootsies Colleen). If that link stops working, they look almost exactly like these. Frumpalicious, but SO comfy :-) They were $20 at Burlington, which looks like less than half of what they originally cost!
While looking for pictures of these shoes online, I found these. I think I NEED THEM!!!!
Sorry that I was too lazy to download and post the actual pictures.
Sunday, November 02, 2008
We went to the mall. Of course there was not a single light blue dress in the ENTIRE mall. There were tons of beautiful jewel toned clothes for fall, but not a single sky blue piece of clothing to be found. We finally found an ivoryish goldish dress.
Neither ivory nor goldish are in my sister's wedding colors, but OH WELL. It's better than bright blue, I guess. As you can see, it's quite matronly looking. My sister was not very happy with this and doesn't want me to look 'old'. I told her that I AM the matron of honor, not a bridesmaid, and I AM old and matronly, so it will work well. The best part about it? It was $15. It was really $25, but the lady in line in front of us had two coupons and the store would only let her use one, so she gave the other to my mom. Woot!
After we finally located the dress, we had to get accessories. Silver shoes and diamondy jewelry would not do. We hit Payless, and they had one pair of shoes that matched the jacket of the dress very well. They don't match the bottom of the dress as well, but OH WELL. (And in the picture they don't look like they match at all.) I got a pearly necklace, earrings, and bracelet from Claire's. Now I've got to figure out what to do with my hair. I was going to wear it mostly down (probably in a half-up of some variety), but I'm not sure if that will work with this dress. I might try to do a matronly looking French twist or something.
Saturday, November 01, 2008
Wow, this was probably the most compelling post ever.
I'm not sure how successful I'll be at NaBloPoMo. I'll be out of town for 4 days next week, and unlike the rest of the country, my cell phone does not send emails or get on the internet, I don't have a laptop with wireless, nor any other kind of internet-accessing device! My mom has a Blackberry, now that I think about it. I may end up using it to post here (if I can figure out a way to delete the sent message from history!), or maybe our hotel will have computers.
Monday, October 27, 2008
So, I signed up for Nablopomo. Probably a bad decision, destined for failure. I'm too much of a perfectionist ("huh?", you're probably saying, "that drivel you post is the perfectionist version?"). It takes me an hour to post anything, and I always feel like I have to spend time uploading pictures. In the spirit of non-perfectionism, I'm going to end this right here and not even finish that thought.
Did you know I was going to start a running blog? I was. But I didn't. And then I slacked off running. Today I thought sadly "my running career is over before it even started." That got me motivated enough to go for a short run.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Fresh, raw, shelled almonds – perfect for food storage – delivered right to your door for $4.00 per pound.
California’s almond trees have just been harvested, and it’s a bumper crop! Almonds should be on anyone’s top 10 list of most-nutritious foods. Almonds are not only wildly nutritious and a fantastic fresh source of Vitamin E and fiber, they’re also lower in fat than all the other nuts. When you soak truly raw almonds, they sprout and are nutritionally worth 200% to 500% more: they double in fiber, and minerals, vitamins, and those all-important enzymes go through the roof! Enzyme inhibitors are neutralized and the almond’s plant energy is released—for you to use. This item should be in everyone’s pantry. These shelled almonds are FRESH OUT OF THE TREE and will be good for at least one year at 70°F and even longer in cold storage, refrigerated, or frozen. This is a perfect item for food storage.
If you order 25 pounds or more and you live in Utah, Salt Lake, or Davis counties, I will deliver your order to you for free. (I will take one Saturday after the order comes in and deliver them all that day.) The minimum order size is 10 pounds. Delivery of orders from 10-24 pounds will be 25 cents per pound, or you can pick them up at my home in Utah County. (Go in with your friends to make a 25 pound order!) I will include a booklet with instructions for soaking almonds (similar to sprouting) for maximum nutritional benefit, as well as a collection of recipes including almond milk, almond paté, chocolate almond torte, crispy almond snacks that kids will love, and many others.
Unfortunately, you can’t get truly raw almonds from any retailer, unless they’re $8-$12 per pound from Spain. Not Costco, not Good Earth, not Wild Oats, not Azure Standard. It’s been illegal since September 2007 for California to sell raw almonds to retailers, and California produces 85% of the world’s almonds—it’s the state’s largest agricultural export. For that you can thank the mandatory high-heat, flash-pasteurization law that the FDA is currently being sued for, by a coalition of almond growers. Some nuts are labeled raw (because no restrictions on this are imposed by the government), even though they are flash pasteurized and WILL NOT GERMINATE.
These almonds come directly from a ranch in California. The September 2007 flash-pasteurization law allows you to buy 100 pounds per person, per day, directly from the rancher. Not only are these nuts truly raw, but they are less expensive than the flash pasteurized nuts you can get in local stores. There are 25-27 nuts per ounce. The picture you see here shows smaller nuts (30-32 nuts per ounce) from the same ranch. Yours will be a bit bigger and nicer!
Leave me a comment or email me. Since we're talking finances, I'll be glad to give you my phone number, but email me first!
I will accept checks, money orders, or Paypal. I need to receive your payment by October 29th (Paypal payments must be cleared by that date).
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
1) I'm really lazy. 5 extra minutes of sleep or makeup? Sleep wins every time!
2) I have no fashion sense. I insist that I'm better at matching colors than my husband, but other than that, I just don't get it. The most attractive clothes I've owned have been picked out by my sister or husband. I wrote about this two years ago.
3) I'm REALLY cheap. Right now I have one pair of dress shoes. My mom thinks she bought them for me 3 years ago. I think it is in between 1 and 2 years ago. Either way, I've worn them nearly every day since, and they're trashed. Whoa! I just looked at the pictures in the link I referenced above, and I have the shoes on! So I guess I have had them at least two years. Sheesh.
4) Comfort is my paramount goal. I LOVE LOVE LOVE the look of high heels. But then I try them on, and I just can't do it. I cannot put myself through that torture. I browse at Zappo's and have saved pictures of the most gorgeous purple brushed leather heels on my computer, but I just can't get myself to actually suffer for beauty. You might have noticed that I had heels on in one of those pictures in the 2006 post. I would wear them to work and hobble in to the building. I would hang out at my desk all day and leave it only for emergencies (i.e., bathroom runs). Then I would have to pull myself up the stairs by the handrails. When I got home at night, I would take pictures of my poor red feet. For someone who has had 3 unmedicated childbirths (two of which were at home), I have a pretty low threshold for discomfort.
5) I rebel against societal expectations. Our culture's standard of beauty is so arbitrary. Here in the USA, it's sleek hair, makeup, a size 0 body, and high heels. In other cultures, it's lip plates, foot binding, or stretched necks. Who decides? I know that I have bought into our culture's idea of beauty. I'm trying to change that, but it's hard -- it's something ingrained into us from birth.
Wow, that was supposed to be a quick bullet-point list. Oops. Anyway, there was actually an entirely different point to this post. Namely, my sister is getting married the first weekend of November. Most of the time, I am fine with my bun/no-makeup/no-heels lifestyle, but I would like to look decent for the wedding (by US standards; no lip plates). My sister bought me a dress, and I actually think it will work OK. But what about the rest of the ensemble?! I need to figure out hair, makeup, and shoes.
Here is the dress, and yes, I don't know how to pose or smile:
It looks way different on the model (no surprise).
This dress is perfect for my um, chest area. I will not even get into my struggles with bras. But the fact that the pretty neckline thing on this dress covers it all up is FABULOUS. Someday I hope to find a good bra that fits. Probably not happening since I need a 30G (depending on how long since I've nursed the baby).
I have worn my hair in a bun probably 80-90% of the time since early 2006. I no longer own a straightening iron, curling iron, or hairspray. Since I'm not the bride, I don't need to worry about a glamour-intense hairdo, but I do want to look non-frumpy. I'm thinking that I'll do my hair in a half-up of some variety, with the remainder curled -- either my natural curls, or steam-rollers, or curling iron curls. Then a few wisps around my face will make it look awesome. Although now that I think of it, if I do that, I can guarantee that my baby will suck on/eat them, leaving them looking scraggly and nasty.
Here is a picture of me with no makeup:
When I was 14, I had my makeup professionally done. I think the colors complemented me well. I have never strayed from them in nearly 14 years of wearing makeup (I've worn it sporadically). As of yesterday, I had mascara, but that was it. The kids got into my eyeshadow, eyeliner, and lipstick and destroyed it. As I mentioned above, I cannot STAND spending money on stuff, especially something like makeup. I went for the high-quality stuff (haha) and bought a few things at WalMart today. I had two colors in mind for the lipstick -- nude and almost nude. I decided to be really bold and go for the 'almost nude'. Well, I tried it on at home, and it is Barbie doll pink! After a few minutes it brightened into a neon Barbie pink. In what galaxy is this 'nude'? $5 down the drain. I bought an eyebrow pencil, as my eyebrows are pretty much invisible. I think it might be OK. Maybe.
Shoes. Sigh. I'm going to have to wear heels of some sort. I hope I can find something nice with about 2" heels. If I get them now and wear them around the house, I think I might be able to stand them long enough to get pictures taken. If anyone knows of a place where I can get CHEAP dyeable shoes or clear shoes, let me know! By cheap, I mean $20 or less, dyed. Probably not happening, huh?
Has anyone made it this far? *chirp* *chirp* (That was the sound of crickets chirping. . . .)
Sunday, October 12, 2008
There are so many things I have wanted to write about over the past few months/years, but I never have time to write all of them. I've decided to just get started again and do what I can. The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step, or something like that. That said, the following post was not even a kernel of an idea in my mind until about 10 minutes ago. So all those other things I've been meaning to write about will have to wait.
A few minutes ago I was rubbing my arms because I was cold. I felt something firm and lumpy. After freaking out for a nanosecond, wondering what this unusual lump could be, I remembered -- oh yeah, I recently acquired a muscle. Yes, 'a' muscle. All the others are still just like limp spaghetti, but this one has decided to single itself out.
The muscle in question is the lateral head of the triceps brachii. It took several minutes of intense Googling to figure that out. I acquired it because of a Craigslist purchase. A few months ago I decided to start 'jogging'. I meant to start a blog about my 'jogging' adventure, but I never got started, and now I don't even remember what my motivation to 'jog' was. Anyway, I ended up buying a $30 jogging stroller off of Craigslist. It is pretty much a piece of crap, and I have to fight with it to keep it on the sidewalk/trail. Over the past few months I managed to develop a triceps muscle due to fighting with the stroller! Yay for 'jogging' with crappy strollers!
(The reason I put 'jogging' in quotes is because of my pace. On my last 'jog', my first after a 3-week hiatus, actual snails blew past me. Seriously. I was doing a 17-minute mile. 17 minutes, really. I didn't even know it was possible to 'jog' that slowly. I could easily walk faster.)
Friday, May 16, 2008
The full recipe is proprietary (see GreenSmoothieGirl.com and her store), but I'll tell you the basics of what I used:
lemon with peel
flax seed oil
spinach, chard, and kale
I am still a little light on the greens; I could increase the proportion of greens a lot more. I noticed some, um, digestive disturbances when I went all-out with the greens, so I've cut back on them for now. I need to get a kitchen scale to get a better idea of the true amount I'm using on a weight basis.
Anyway, the smoothie was absolutely fabulous, and incredibly smooth - almost silky, like pudding. I used a VitaMix to blend it; I'm not sure if I'd have gotten the same result using my Bosch blender. Perhaps I'll make the same thing again tonight using the Bosch to test.
Robyn shows how to make her basic smoothie here. You can vary the types of greens and fruit however you want.
Thursday, May 15, 2008
I based this off Smitten Kitchen's 'the best chocolate cake, expletive-free' recipe.
Copied directly from the above link:
To Make a Four-Layer Chocolate Cake
For cake layers:
12 oz fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), chopped
6 tablespoons water
12 large eggs, separated, at room temperature
1 1/3 cup sugar
1½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons Dutch-process unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups heavy cream
6 tablespoons confectioners sugar, sifted
4 tablespoons Grand Marnier*
Make cake layers: Preheat oven to 350Â°F. Grease four 9-inch circular cake pans and line bottoms of circles with a piece of parchment paper.
Melt chocolate with water in a small heavy saucepan over very low heat, stirring. Cool to lukewarm.
Beat yolks, 2/3 cup sugar, and salt in a large bowl with an electric mixer until thick and pale, about 5 minutes in a standing mixer or about 8 minutes with a hand-held mixer. Fold in melted chocolate until blended. Beat whites with cleaned beaters until they just hold soft peaks (you will need an enormous bowl for 12 egg whites).
Gradually add remaining 2/3 cup sugar and beat until whites just hold stiff peaks. Fold one third of whites into melted-chocolate mixture to lighten, then fold in remaining whites gently but thoroughly.
Spread batter evenly over four baking pans and bake until puffed and top is dry to the touch, 15 to 18 minutes, rotating cakes between racks to ensure they bake evenly. Transfer pans to cooling racks and if necessary, loosen edges with a knife.
Sift cocoa powder over top of cake layers and place a piece of waxed paper over the top of the pans. Place a baking sheet over paper and invert cake onto it, gently peeling off wax paper lining. Place layers in the freezer for about an hour, until they are firm enough to be carefully lifted without breaking.
Make filling: Beat cream with powdered sugar and Grand Marnier with cleaned beaters until it just holds stiff peaks.
Fill and roll cake: Bring first cake layer out of the freezer and arrange on platter, cocoa side down. Spread one-quarter of filling evenly over the cake. Bring the next cake layer out of the freezer, placing it gently over the filling, again cocoa side down. Repeat this process until all layers and whipped cream are used.
Keep cake in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve it. Two hours should be more than enough to assure that the layers are no longer frozen.
Dark chocolate grated into curls with a vegetable peeler makes for an excellent garnish.
* You can substitute the following for Grand Marnier: 4 tablespoons Cognac and 1 teaspoon vanilla; 4 tablespoons cocoa and 1 teaspoon vanilla; or 4 teaspoons instant-espresso powder or instant-coffee granules dissolved in 4 teaspoons water plus 1 teaspoon vanilla.
I halved everything to make a two-layer cake and I used the cocoa variation instead of the Grand Marnier.
Here are the ingredients I started out with:
And here is the finished product:
Friday, May 09, 2008
start with 1 C cold water
add 1 handful spinach and 1/2 leaf collard greens (no stem)
blend until smooth
add 1-1/2 C fresh pineapple with all the juice from when you cut the pineapple up
add 1 pear, with skin (I removed the seeds)
add a tiny squirt of agave nectar (I'm sure it was less than a tablespoon)
drizzle in melted coconut oil as the blender is going (I used several tablespoons)
It was delicious! It's heavy on fruit, but it's a great way to get started on green smoothies. You can work your way up to more green-intensive recipes.
I also added a raw egg to mine, but most people probably aren't going to go for that ;-)
Friday, April 11, 2008
A couple of weeks ago, I went grocery shopping and included fish on my list. I bought a somewhat-thawed previously-frozen fish labeled 'Whole Red Snapper'. It looked kind of gross, as it still had the head attached, including deflated eyeballs. I've used chicken feet when making stock in the past, so heads/eyeballs didn't really bother me that much.
However, I made a serious thinking error. I assumed that when the label said "Whole Red Snapper", it meant "Mostly Whole (Gutted) Red Snapper." Sadly, I was wrong. Today I got the fish out of the freezer, and as I removed it from the package, I noticed that there was no tell-tale slit up the stomach. EW. That meant there were still GUTS inside. If this was a fresh fish, I wouldn't have been bothered. As a kid I always wanted to go into the health professions, so I actually liked gutting fish. I loved to examine and feel all the organs. But those guts just sitting there inside the fish for all this time . . . yucky.
I thawed the fish in warm water. I planned to scale it, remove the fins, gut it, and chop off the head. Unfortunately, when I took it out of the water, it just started falling apart. Everywhere I touched it, the skin just fell off. That was fine, since I didn't have to bother scaling it. I started the stomach slit, and the very dull knife sailed right through the flesh. That's not really a good sign. It basically fell open in my hands. I removed the guts, and meanwhile, the head fell half off. All this time I was wondering if this fish was even safe to eat, but it smelled OK. I guess it just didn't appreciate being frozen and thawed.
I baked it with butter and pepper. My kids usually LOVE fish, and they wouldn't even touch it! I guess the reality of it was just too much for them.
Thursday, March 06, 2008
Monday, March 03, 2008
If you check out this post at Loralee's, you can get entered into a drawing for a Saucy Frock apron.