Tuesday, April 15, 2014

one and two and three and four and

The best kind of friend is the kind with whom you can discuss all manner of things, from the symbolism of Miley Cyrus miming sexual congress with a giant inflatable hot dog, to Russia vs. Ukraine and the wage gap, and everything in between.  John is that kind of friend to me, for which I am thankful.  He is very inquisitive, and likes to find out where truth ends and opinion begins, and where in that space people build their walls.  When we first started dating I was unused to long, detailed explorations of the ramifications of legalizing marijuana or taking your children to nude beaches, and it was quite an eye-opener for me.  My family sublimates all disagreement and negative emotion, and I am a very bossy, opinionated person who tends to shoot first and ask questions later, so it was a weird mix and I had to adjust my perspective.  Because of the questions John asked me I was confronted with the realization that a lot of my opinions were based on culture more than truth, and that was a hard thing to accept.  I think I've made a fair amount of progress in the time that John and I have been married, and I guess I'm pretty close to perfect now, which is a relief.  I thought it would take longer. 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

product may stay: mentos breath mints

I like gum, but sometimes I get irritated by chewing it.  Too much work!  I like the idea of mints, but usually I just eat them like candy and they leave a bad aftertaste.  Tic-tacs are THE WORST candy.  I really don't know who in their right mind would eat them. 

I like these mints: 

They look sort of like a stool softener or a pain-reliever gelcap, but they taste good and feel nice in my mouth.  And they don't have a gross aftertaste or make my teeth furry.  Product may stay. 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

I expect to live single all the days of my life

Yesterday I was talking a walk down to check on a neighbor, and I was just in my normal clothes, instead of "exercise clothes," and people were giving me crap about walking in my cowboy boots.  Well, it's not like I'm really exercising, so why bother pretending?  Plus these particular boots are more comfortable than my athletic shoes, anyway.  When I go walking before I take my shower I wear athletic shoes, but I have always balked at getting into exercise clothes after I've showered.  Seems to defeat the purpose.  So yesterday I took my exercise in jeans and cowboy boots.  Sue me. 

The mayor was out spraying weeds in his driveway and wanted to discuss a rogue midwife zoning situation we've got going on.  He was one of the people who hassled me about my boots.  Duh, he should know better.  He wears boots to church, surely he understands?

Hungry, anyone?

They're good for what ails you.  As long as what ails you is intestinal parasites. 

Monday, April 7, 2014

speak softly to me

Hello everyone.

Last week was our spring break.  We went to the aquarium and it was okay, kind of lame as aquariums go, but I guess pretty good for a landlocked state.  The otters were the best part I think.  There were some poison dart frogs either fighting or mating furiously--they were different varieties, so I am not sure about the viability of any offspring.  If there are any herpetologists in the audience I would love to discuss this mating/fighting behavior at length. 

On Friday we had a culinary world tour, and I made the children choose from my Time-Life Foods of the World series an appetizer, entrée, side dish, and dessert, each from a different country.  For the side dish they chose green beans in tomato sauce (judías verdes con salsa de tomate--Spain and Portugal), and I think they were just being jerks because they were sick of looking through the cookbooks, but I called the crap out of their bluff, and the green beans were actually pretty good.  The appetizer ended up being chips and salsa (Mexico), which did not come out of the Time-Life books but I guess we'll let it slide.  The entrée was Toad in the Hole (sausages baked in eggy batter--the British Isles), which my kids began clamoring for as soon as I told them what was expected.  Dessert was a Paris-Brest (Provincial France), which I must admit was pretty stunning. 

Also I got to do a little bit of postpartum/newborn goat care, which was great.  Hazel and Sally are starting to look more robust, so maybe their breeding took after all, huzzah!  I wonder if Hazel will kid triplets again.  If so, I hope none of them are breech.  I had no idea how dangerous that was until afterward--thank goodness we didn't lose her.  Ah, reminiscing. 

Friday, March 28, 2014

we understand; after all, we are from the land of chocolate

Yesterday I was showing Grant the video for "Your Surrender" by Neon Trees--a song I highly recommend, by the way--and Grant said, "That video is weird."  And I was like, "Umm, try again."  Because really.  Grant has no idea the weirdness that exists out there. That's about the least weird video I can think of.  When I told John about it he said, "Hey Grant, let me introduce you to our friend Ziggy Stardust.  Let's watch Labyrinth while we're at it."  And that barely scratches the surface!  We actually made the kids watch Labyrinth a while ago, and Grant was horrified by David Bowie's very robust, obvious junk (let's be honest; there was probably crotch-stuffing going on--it was the eighties) and said that the Goblin King needed to put on a pair of compression shorts. 

Further fantasizing about our imaginary family band:  I wondered aloud to John if maybe I should buy a used drum set, and he said, "And put it out in the milking shed?"
Me:  "No, in the basement."
Him:  "Wow.  You love our children more than I do."
Me:  "But I already let them dribble basketballs in the house, how much worse can it be?"
Him:  "Drums are way louder than basketballs." 
John is a trusted source in this regard, since he's the one who's played with a drum and bugle corps, but I wish he would stop pooping all over my dreams. 

Thursday, March 27, 2014

I love you, but I hate your friends--they're all desperate

Ike accidentally kicked my healing toenail this morning, so that was a party.  I screamed so loudly that the windows rattled and the lights flickered, and for a moment a portal to a Hell dimension opened at our feet, and as it twisted and pulsed, sucking greedily at our feet, Ike's eyes widened in horror at what he had wrought.  But then I stopped screaming and everything went back to normal. 

Here are some things I have fought with my children about this week:
Grant:  Couldn't go up to the church to play basketball on Tuesday night because he hasn't been getting out of bed and he missed the bus last week.  40 minutes.
Emmett:  Is not allowed to wear basketball shorts to school and wasn't allowed to take a tablet computer to school when he was in third grade.  Ongoing (basketball shorts), 10 minutes (tablet)
Ike:  Refuses to count when he plays "My Country 'Tis of Thee." 20 minutes
Willa:   Always decides she's hungry right when she's supposed to be getting in bed and cries when her stalling tactic is not successful.  Ongoing

We finally had a decent Pi Day on Saturday, and it was great.  I made an apple pie (my worst ever), a bananas Foster cream pie (great), and a raspberry meringue (great).  I saw the most beautiful piped meringue topping the other day, so I piped my meringue from a plastic bag, and it looked like Lisa Simpson, but in a cool way.  Also at the party were chicken salad and ice cream cake (for Grant's birthday) and the invention I'm making for my own birthday cake, which is:  POTATO CHIP CAKE.  It definitely has room for improvement, but the concept is solid.  I made a black and white marble cake, cut out a channel in the center and piped it full of pastry cream into which I had folded crumbled potato chips, and frosted it with chocolate frosting also into which I had folded crumbled potato chips.  Changes that need to be made:  moister cake, more cream filling, frosting that doesn't turn gritty when refrigerated.  Also the potato chips do become a little soggy and leathery after a few hours of sitting, so it might need to be assembled just prior to eating.  It's a challenge for sure, but I do think it could be great.  And could you get more American than a potato chip cake?  Highly dubious. 

Friday, March 21, 2014

the sweet fullfilment of their secret longing

I have thought of a wonderful, terrible cake idea for my birthday, but I'm not going to tell you about it yet.  I have to do some experiments first and see if it's even feasible to make my dream come to life. 

I was feeling a little ashamed that we only had one pie on Pi Day (chocolate banana cream: layer of bananas, layer of vanilla cream, layer of chocolate cream), and we've had to wait clear until tomorrow to celebrate Pi Day properly.  But then I remembered--it's really pie month, since if you don't worry about the day it's 3/14 all month.  So now I feel justified in eating pies upon pies until we hit April.  Can you imagine how crazy it's going to get next year, when Pi Day is on 3/14/15?  Even more digits?  CAN YOU IMAGINE?