Thursday, April 30, 2009

Working Around One Ingredient

Do you ever start to plan a meal with just one ingredient in mind? That's the way this week is turning out to be.

Thanks to my friend Kris (of the What's Cooking? blog), we started our week off with a great recipe. In a blog post of hers a couple weeks ago, she talked about a chimichurri recipe that she makes. Stein bought some steak and salmon over the weekend and we had some parsley leftover from something last week, so I thought that recipe would work out great. It was awesome. The combination of the sauce, bleu cheese and steak was so tasty. Oh, and we didn't use skirt steak - I think any steak would be great. Stein said it was okay with the salmon (I'm not a huge salmon fan), but thought it may be better with a milder fish.

The next night, we had leftover tomatoes, and also some basil from the lasagna Stein made last week. I decided to make a tomato/basil salad (our first of the season!), and also pulled some pork chops from the freezer to have with it. Then I remembered the chimichurri sauce from the night before. It was perfect for the pork chops. I just seasoned the chops with salt and pepper before I grilled them, and then put the sauce on top. It was perfect.

Today I saw that avocados were on sale at the store (probably in anticipation of Cinco de Mayo), so I decided to do a recipe with avocados. I also wanted to use chicken, so I looked for a recipe on I found this one. I did modify it a bit - the avocados ended up not being ripe enough for guacamole, so I used Trader Joe's guacamole and doctored it up with some onion, cilantro and tomato. I also used bagged shredded cabbage for the cole slaw, with the change of 1/4 cup sour cream with 1/2 cup of mayonnaise (we ran out of mayonnaise). When we sat down to eat, Stein wanted to hate the meal (he's not a Bobby Flay fan). He took one bite and said, "Damnit". Man, it was good. The combination of creaminess, smokiness, and a little kick was great.

Any one of these meals would be perfect for guests. We usually make new things for guests (a no-no, I know), but now we have some tested recipes that we can use.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Reminiscing, Reunion

20 years. 20 years? 20 years ago at this time, I was counting down the days that I would be done with high school. It was a bittersweet time, because I really liked being in high school and had a great set of friends I would miss, but I was also looking forward to being in the "grown-up" world of college, to go away, live in a dorm, and start on the academic path to my career.

This past weekend I traveled to Chicago to attend my 20th high school reunion. My friend Linda mentioned that if you asked that 18 year-old 20 years ago what she thought of being 38, she would probably say, "That's old". But she went on to say, "You know, I really like being this age. I think I like it better than I liked being 18".

I have to agree. While there is still so much to learn in my life, I am comfortable in my own skin now. I know more and more about who I am, what I like, what makes me feel comfortable, and who my true friends really are.

Being back in my high school in my 37-year-old (I'm younger than my peers) skin felt good. Not only did I reconnect with other women who shared the four years with me, but I was able to see the building and sort through the memories through my older, and somewhat wiser eyes.

During that rainy afternoon and evening, I was overwhelmed by a feeling of gratitude. Gratitude for the chance to attend such an incredible school. Gratitude for the teachers who dedicated their time to ensure we were all successful and ready for the next place in our lives. Gratitude for the lifelong friends I made there, who accept me for who I am, and whose care and concern is evident on their faces as they listen intently to the stories I tell. Gratitude for the laughter that bubbled over immediately, as we walked down the familiar hallways and saw a locker, or a class picture, or a stairway that reminded us of a funny story.

I went to an all-girls Catholic high school on the north side of Chicago. It wasn't that unusual back then, I would say that a large majority of the people from my grammar school went on to all-boys' or all-girls' high school. My sisters paved the road for me to attend the high school where I went. There really was no question when it came time to make my decision. I would go to the school where they each spent four years, taking the CTA bus there every morning, walking to school from the bus stop with the other girls wearing the same uniform, sitting in classes taught by some of the same teachers that they had.

And now 20 years later? Well, my school has become quite unique. It is one of the few single-sex high schools remaining. Some of the other schools that were all-girls or all-boys have gone co-ed. Some have closed their doors and now house charter schools. Some have closed their doors and now house businesses.

There are two sides to every coin, I know, and I'm not going to get into the pros and cons of single-sex high school education. This post is about my reunion, and I'll continue with that. But I have to say that I am mostly "pro-SSA" (my high school) after hearing the fantastic statistics that were given to us during a speech by the principal. Those statistics made me proud of the place that I spent four years. Proud of the challenging education I received there. Proud to be part of a place that is still revered in the city. Proud to be part of a group of people who still care about me.

I won't bore you with all of the statistics. But how could I not be proud of a statistic like, "1.5 million dollars in college scholarships already secured by the senior class"? I didn't hear what the current enrollment is, but I'm guessing that the senior class is somewhere around 60-70 girls. (This is down from 150 who I graduated with).

While I was in the building, in-between catching up with my friends, I tried to take everything in. I saw details that I missed in the rush of those four years. While I rushed from class to class or volleyball practice, or student council meetings back then, I missed the mosaic pictures on the walls, the beautifully-maintained woodwork around the tall windows and doorways in the classrooms. Sure, I was being reminiscent on Saturday, but these things just added to the pride I have for the place in general.

And the camaraderie. The feeling in the air this past Saturday was so comfortable, so inviting. It didn't matter if you never had a class with someone. The bond of going to our high school together at the same time was enough. We gathered in the study hall, which was cleared of desks, sat at tables, and ate and drank together. We looked through our old yearbooks together, commenting on the whereabouts of various people. Most of the people there have been reconnected already through Facebook, so the initial "what are you doing now?" talk was eliminated. It just felt like a reunion of friends, catching up on the latest in their lives. And did I mention the laughter? Only this comfortable air could allow such laughter. Oh, did it flow. Until my sides hurt.

We're already planning a get-together sooner than five years (when the next reunion will be). I hope it happens. It was so good to be with this wonderful group of women, all from different places and backgrounds, but with a unique bond that brought us together in an instant.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Green of it All

This is one of my favorite times of the year. This time of the year means so many different things to me. It means warmer weather. It means longer days. It means eating outside. It means sun on my bare arms. After being stuck inside all winter and looking at browns and greys, we just want to do something, anything, just to be outside. Stein and I have been getting some things together in the yard while the weather has been nice. (We still need to do more, like plant flowers and pull weeds.)
But this time of the year also means that all kinds of things are coming out of the ground, or branches, or buildings. Tulips and daffodils are the first brave ones, coming out despite some cold temperatures that continue to linger. Then there are the buds on branches of trees, first looking like bumps and then like fuzz as they start to strut their bright green color. And people come out of buildings to eat at outdoor restaurants, sit on blankets at the park, or just walk around the neighborhood.
One of my favorite things during this time is the bright greens that you see. On my way to and from Chicago this weekend, I saw all kinds of shades of green on the sides of the highway. It made me reminiscent of Ireland, where the shades of green are so unique. I remember flying into Dublin, where the green grass on the ground was so bright it looked fake.

This green comes out overnight, it seems. One day there is a brown tree standing on the corner, and the next day it is covered in bright green buds ready to burst into full leaves any minute. The same thing happened with the seeds I planted in my newspaper "pots". On Friday when I left for Chicago, there were some small sprouts in the pots. On Sunday when I got home, I saw this:

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Earth Day

These kids never cease to amaze me. Because they aren't shy about telling me all sorts of things about their lives, I not only hear about things their parents wouldn't want me to know and also about everything that comes into their brains. At any given time, I could hear things blurted out of the blue like, "I got a new shirt." Or "My mom is sick." Or "I saw a big worm outside in the dirt." Or "My birthday is in 3 months." But another thing that amazes me is what they know at such a young age.

These kids know their stuff.

As part of Earth Day this week, I did a project with the kindergartners and first graders. First I read The Lorax by Dr. Seuss. Then I gathered a bunch of scraps of paper from the teachers' work room to do a recycled paper art project. I didn't really have any expectations, except that it may get a little out of hand with glue and scissors. Remember that day with the glue? Well, I got smart. We now have glue sticks.

From the time I explained to them that we were going to be talking about how we need to take care of our earth, they immediately chimed in. We talked about recycling. We talked about animals and how we need to take care of them. We talked about taking care of plants and what they need to grow. And these were only kindergartners.

During the story, I heard so many kids empathizing with the animals in the story. They were actually mad at the Once-ler who made his factory bigger and bigger and bigger, and drove all the animals out of the area.

At the end of the story, I asked them to tell me what they would do with the last Truffula seed. Their answers were priceless. I got a lot of "I would plant it in the ground." But what amazed me was how they built on this concept. One first grader said, "I would give it to my grandma because she loves plants." Another one said, "I would plant it and take care of it, and protect it. Then I would get more seeds from that plant and plant those. And then there would be a lot of trees." One girl talked about an elaborate security system that she would rig up to the plant so that it couldn't be cut down.

Can you imagine if these ideas came to fruition in areas where plants or animals are endangered? I can just imagine some of the kids standing with their hands on their hips and pointing their fingers at the people in bulldozers or people polluting. That would be so fun to watch.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Sunday Suppers

Sundays for me bring a mix of laziness and depression. Laziness, because we typically get the things that need to be done on Saturday leaving our Sundays pretty wide open, and depression because it's the end of the weekend and almost time for Monday.

One thing that helps us with the depression and also the laziness is cooking. We normally cook something every night for dinner, but our meals during the week tend to be quicker than our weekend meals. Stein and I tend to switch off who cooks, though we don't have a formal schedule, and we make things like pastas, tacos, salads, and stir frys. We don't tend to spend a lot of time thinking or creating the meals, and we have our go-to meals if we aren't feeling especially creative.

But on the weekends, and particularly on Sundays in the winter, our meals tend to be more labor intensive in the thinking, researching and creating aspects. Stein is the one who usually leads these efforts. There may be a roast slowly cooking in the oven, there may be ribs slowly smoking in the smoker, or there may be a stew or soup slowly simmering on the stove. The house is filled with smells that linger all afternoon as we finish up reading the paper, steal a nap or two, or get ready for the week ahead. The good thing about these Sunday meals is that there are usually leftovers. Which means that we don't have to think about cooking dinner until Tuesday, or possibly Wednesday.

Today's meal is lasagna. Yesterday it was 75 degrees, but today it is cloudy, grey, and cool. Perfect day for lasagna. Stein is using this recipe by Tyler Florence. He made this recipe before and we really liked it (I may have blogged about it before, I don't know). Just a warning, though: this recipe is not a traditional lasagna recipe. Also, this recipe makes enough for 2 pans of lasagna. You can always freeze one and have it later, but if you don't want to do that, you can obviously cut it in half. The other warning is to read over the part where he talks about putting it together. He flips back and forth calling the filling "sauce" then "meat filling" and it gets a bit confusing. We have found that layering it like a regular lasagna works best.

It smells incredible already, and it's not even in the oven yet. The combination of browned meat, herbs, tomatoes, and noodles is making my mouth water. If I think about it, I'll take some pictures when it comes out of the oven. But I may be too hungry to take the time.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Reusin' & Recyclin'

Every year when I buy the starter plants for things like tomatoes and herbs, I'm amazed by the price of these things. I thought maybe this year I would try it on my own. So I bought some seeds yesterday, and needed to get them in some dirt. I didn't want to buy plastic containers, and I didn't want to invest in containers that would sit around if I decided not to do this project again. So I turned to the internet to see if I could use something I already had on hand.

It turns out, that the answer was newspaper! There were a lot of how-to videos and articles on the subject. This one was the clearest I found. So I got to work and made four of them. I only did four so I could test them and see if they work, and then plant the rest of the seeds I bought. Plus, four of them fit nicely in the english muffin container lined with some plastic.

This project was the thing I needed (or didn't need) when I had some work to do for an online class I'm taking. (If you didn't know, I'm kind of a procrastinator.) It didn't take that much time, though, so I eventually had to get back to the classwork. I'll keep you posted on how everything is growing.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Kids' Play

Yesterday I sat for Eric and Mia, and when all of the plans I had in my head were pretty much thrown out the window, I looked around to create plan B. Games! I love board games, and I think that they are great for kids and adults. I used to have lengthy conversations on the topic with my cooperating teacher. She and I both agreed that kids need to play more board games and card games. It not only helps with learning things like counting, money, and math, it also helps with learning things like taking turns, honesty, and winning or losing gracefully.

Mia suggested Sorry!. (Bear with me as you read this, since Sorry! does have an exclamation point in its name). I was not going to say no, since Sorry! is one of my favorite games. It was the Madagascar version, but that didn't matter. The same rules applied, or so I thought until the game started.

Before I go any further, I have to tell you a bit of my Sorry! background. You see, my family played Sorry! a lot. I don't doubt that this all came from my grandpa, a man who loved his games of Sorry! almost as much as his cup of chocolate-covered raisins each night. When we would go over to his house, the card table would often times already be set up. He would set it directly in front of his recliner which faced the TV. So while 60 minutes or an evening game show would play in the background, we would all scoot our folding chairs around the table. We didn't argue with any of this set-up. We learned early that there was no arguing with this man and his Sorry! game. He knew the game well. In fact, he could tell you where to move your marker anywhere on the board from any place, regardless of what number you drew. He never counted out spaces on the board, as I laboriously did. His marker would just move from one space to another. He also had to wear a "rubber fingertip" on his index finger, so that he could grip the cards when he picked them up. The cards got worn in one spot from that constant rubbing. This was serious Sorry! playing.

So yesterday, when we started playing, I had my game on. I knew Sorry! well. Not like my grandpa knew it, but enough to know the rules. As we went on with the game, Mia informed me of some of her rules. When I questioned her, she would say to Eric, "Right Eric? That's how we play it?" And Eric would say yes, or come over if he felt extra reinforcement was needed. I started to get mad, because some of the rules being broken were what makes the game of Sorry! challenging. And then I thought to myself, Kelly, you are 30 something years older than her. Chill. It's just a game. The rules really don't matter much. You're playing a game, taking turns, counting, and not watching TV. All is good. And it was.

Until she won. What was that about losing gracefully?

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Going Again

We're off to Chicago today. We're going for the main purpose of Cubs opening day on Monday, but we'll also get so see some friends along the way. I'm going to brunch with Chris' family tomorrow for Easter, and Stein will be going to the Blackhawks/Red Wings game. Then Monday Chris and I will practice our now 12-year-old or so tradition of going to Yaksie's at 6 am for WXRT's opening day broadcast. Friends will come and go to visit throughout the day. Chris and I will head to the game in the afternoon (and according to the forecast, freeze our butts off).

Stein asked me the other day if I thought the Easter Bunny would find me in Chicago. Without blinking an eye, I said, "Oh yes, he will. He always knows where I am."

Have a great weekend, everyone! Enjoy your celebrations.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

When Did This All Happen?

I stole this article from my friend Lisa of Lather, Rinse, and Repeat. Not only did it catch my eye because I too was a girl who collected stickers and loved the puffy ones, but also because I see this sad state of affairs with the kids I teach. I know our school is not isolated in this either. I hear this from parents all of the time. Their kids just have too much stuff.

As I recall, I lived for the days that my school papers were returned to me with stickers. Then I would carefully peel the sticker off, and place it into my sticker album where it would be admired by my friends and me. Yes, I had a sticker album. And maybe still do, if I look deep enough in some boxes in the basement.

At the risk of sounding like an old woman, I feel like we cherished our toys a lot more than kids do today. On Christmas we received what we thought was an abundance of toys - 4-5 things, plus our stocking stuffers. Those toys lasted until our birthday, when we would receive 4-5 more things. If a new toy came out, and we had to wait a long time until Christmas or our birthday, we hoped that one of our neighbors would get it so that we could play with it. Sure, we shouted and argued every time a commercial came on with something we just had to have, but my mom always made the smart decision to ignore us.

At school, I have a prize chest for one of the classes. This was the only thing that worked at the start of school when I was trying to gain control of this naughty class. In the prize chest are all kinds of pencils, pens, erasers, and gel pens in all kinds of colors and designs. In my mind, this is the perfect prize chest. If one of my teachers presented this to me in second grade, I would've thought that I just got the last golden ticket into the school supply factory. (Granted, I am a supply freak, you know this already.)

But the reaction that I get from these kids is disconcerting. They already have a sense of entitlement. In second grade. When they qualify for a prize, they pull something out of the chest, turn around without saying anything, and go on their merry way. The prize is usually left on a random library shelf or beside a computer in the lab. It just isn't important to them in their worlds filled with the clutter of so many toys.

What ever happened to crafts made out of recycled bits of stuff around the house? Why do we feel the need to fill our kids' lives with more clutter? And when did this sense of entitlement creep into the minds of kids? Where did thank yous go?

Raise the Price of Toys
Pamela Paul, Huffington Post 2008-04-30

If you’re a woman of a certain age — not that old actually — in your thirties, you’ll remember the puffy sticker. You will remember, as I do, those moments during school recess when you and your fellow second-graders took out your sticker albums to show off and trade goods. And you will remember the supreme worth of the puffy sticker — held in esteem above all other stickers — glitter, fuzzy, even those shiny, almost vinyl-like stickers you’d get in the 25 cent gumball machine, often emblazoned with “Grease” or “AC/DC.” The glory of the puffy Hello Kitty!

You’ll remember the days when it was a huge deal to buy a new sticker at the stationary store. How the sales person had to be summoned to cut off a purchased sticker from one of the display rolls so that you could take home your prize. Stickers back then cost a dime or a quarter, no small sum, especially if like me, your allowance was 10 cents a week. (Yes, I’m in my thirties — not my sixties!) Children once “made do” with allowances of less than a dollar.

And so, like me, you were probably initially thrilled when you saw how the price of a sticker has plummeted since our days of deprivation. Today, a mega made-in-China book of stickers sells for $6.99 at the local CVS and comes packed with over 100 pages of glossy stickers. 700 in all! as the cover burst blares. Naturally, I scooped one up for my then three-year-old daughter.

But here’s what happened. Beatrice had too many stickers. WAY too many stickers. She had so many stickers she didn’t know what to do. Rather than care for and treasure them the way I did , she wantonly stuck them on shoes, jeans, furniture, walls and the stroller. She stuck them on me and on her baby brother. The end result is that she couldn’t care less about stickers. They are meaningless.

In our abundance, something has been lost.

The average child in America gets seventy new toys a year, and the United States, with 4 percent of the world’s children, consumes 40 percent of the world’s toys. This is doing our children no good. Rather than bulldozing their way through dozens of one-note, breakable, and possibly harmful toys, children benefit from repetitive use of old favorites, finding new ways to play with them as their minds mature and expand.

So many of us lament the fact that elementary, high school and even college students today seem creatively bankrupt, bereft of problem-solving skills, and completely lacking resourcefulness. Is it any surprise when we cater to them from infancy with a barrage of cheap toys. That they treat their playthings carelessly, fail to value material goods, and become indifferent to waste? And that they then complain of boredom as they get older?

Kids would be a lot better off getting five new toys a year and playing with them 50 different ways. The best toys, after all, are the ones that look most “boring” from the outside. A good rule of thumb is that toys should be 10% toy, 90% child. It’s what a child puts into a toy that counts. Take plain wooden blocks. At two months, a baby chews on the block and learns what wood tastes and feels like. At six months, he learns to throw the block and at ten months, he bangs them together. By age four, he is building castles and bridges.

Toys are so cheap that it’s hard to rationalize not buying them. But perhaps we need to raise the price of toys so that parents and children learn to value them again.

In the meantime, get rid of the toys — or better yet, give them away. Cut down on the useless child rearing paraphernalia. You’ll be giving your child a lot more.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Oh, the Humanity

I was off last week as part of the many days that I have to take off. I did have to attend a computer training class last Friday, and my friends Matt and Mandi were there. Mandi spends some of her time in the office, so I asked her how the week of subs was going. I knew that the bulk of the days would be fine, since the long-term sub from last year was there, but I wondered about the other days. When I asked, she immediately said, "Well, I took the sub that was there on Monday off the sub list."

Now, let me explain. In order to be taken off the sub list, you really have to mess up. You make an off-handed remark to a student, you're off the list. You have no class management and require the principal to come in, you're off the list. Show up 5 minutes before the bell rings? Yep, you're off the list.

So I knew that what the sub did or did not do was pretty bad. Mandi went on to explain. First, she did not know how to turn on the computer. I agree, sometimes Macs can be a little tricky in how they're set-up, but I specifically spell out in my sub plans how to turn on the computer. As in, "When you're facing the computer, the power button is on the left side of the base". Mandi let her slide on that one, but the next series of events was unbelievable.

Apparently the former long-term sub was also subbing in another class in the building, so she came in to the library to ask the "new" sub if she had any questions. Here's how the conversation went:

Former Long-Term Sub (FLTS): Just checking in to see if you had any questions.

"New" Sub (NS): Uh, yes, I did. These books that need to be shelved - do they go in a particular place on the shelf?

FLTS: Yes, you see the spine of the book? There are letters and numbers on there that correspond with the specific location in the library.

NS: Oh. So these fiction books - they can go anywhere in the fiction section?

FLTS: No. There is one place and one place only for each book.

NS: Hmm.

FLTS: If you have any questions, you can just leave them here and I will shelf them tomorrow when I'm subbing.

Are you kidding me? Has this woman ever been in a library? Did she seriously think that all of the books are randomly put on the shelves? If so, do we spend hours looking for books anywhere in the library? I am still dumbfounded by this whole thing.

I get a little miffed when books are somewhat out of order (numerical or alphabetical) in a small section. I couldn't imagine the frustration that I would feel in a whole library that was mis-shelved.

What would Dewey say? Oh, I think he would take her off the list too.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

New Links

You may have noticed some new blog links on the right side. I'm excited to introduce you to Lather, Rinse, and Repeat, Mustache Robots, and What's Cooking?

Lather, Rinse, and Repeat is written by my friend Lisa who also went to Marquette. In fact, Lisa and I lived on the same floor freshman year. We lost touch after college, but through the power of Facebook, we're back in touch. Lisa has two kids and is about to move cross-country.

There's kind of the same background story for Mustache Robots. This blog is written by my friend Jeff who is another Marquette alum. Jeff didn't live on our floor freshman year (we lived in an all-girls dorm), but we did have a lot of friends in common. I have also been back in touch with him through Facebook. Jeff has two boys and some of his stories are classics.

My friend Kris, the author of What's Cooking? is a friend of mine from Einstein's. Kris was one of the first people I met when I started working for the company, and we have been on many adventures together. Some places for these adventures? Breckenridge, CO, Scottsdale, AZ, and Milwaukee, WI. Kris' blog is a cooking blog, so of course it's one I admire. She lives in Napa with her daughter and husband.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Two Days


These past two days have been quite contrasts of each other. Yesterday we colored Easter eggs with Eric and Mia. Every year when we do this, we notice how much they're growing up. It used to be that the activity would last about 20 minutes, throwing eggs in dye and then they were done. Now they spend a lot of time deciding on colors and techniques for coloring the eggs. Eric got into the basketball spirit and made an egg for each of the teams playing tonight.
And then last night a storm moved in. I got the call at 5:15 this morning that we had a snow day. A snow day in April? Okay! A snow day is a snow day, right? I think we really could've had school, since the snow is just a wet snow. You can tell in the picture that the streets and sidewalks are pretty clear.
Now just three more days until spring break begins. I can take it.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Creature of Habit

Yet another thing that I blame on my Mom. And again, something that won't come as a surprise to her. Like most people, I am a creature of habit. Although, sometimes I think that my habits flirt with neuroses.

Growing up, we had many things that were done in an organized matter. I'm not surprised because trying to run a household with 7 people had to be organized. There really wasn't room for spontaneity, simply because there wasn't time. The schedule and menu for eating was pretty fixed. We knew that on Saturdays there would be french toast for breakfast, followed by a whirlwind of chores to be done. And on Sundays there would always be pancakes for breakfast. The Saturday menu could be thrown off occasionally by some cocoa wheats, and Sunday could be thrown off by a German pancake or scrambled eggs. But that was really rare.

In eating, one rule applied: never, and I mean never, was breakfast served for dinner. Dinner consisted of traditional dinner foods: spaghetti, tacos, chili, chicken, etc. Straying from that would send any of us into hysterics. My siblings tell the story of the time when my Mom was in the hospital having me, they had to go to a neighbor's for dinner. When the food was served, they looked down at plates of pancakes. Immediately, most of them burst into tears. After some counseling from our oldest sister, they agreed to be polite and eat some of the "dinner" and waited anxiously for my aunt to rescue them and take them to McDonald's.

The same rule goes for breakfast: dinner foods are never to be eaten for breakfast. Breakfast strictly consists of things that are listed on any diner's breakfast section of the menu. There's a reason why it has the title breakfast.

It was always interesting to realize that not every other family did the same thing we did. Soon, after spending many nights sleeping over at friends' houses, I started branching out into the forbidden territory. I realized that pizza wasn't so bad for breakfast when you were really hungry, and sometimes pancakes tasted a little different, but still good, when you had them for dinner.

Yet, even though I did experience things on the other side, I still remain true to my upbringing. Every weekday, with the exception of the days we're out of milk, I have oatmeal for breakfast. The lunches I bring to school contain the same things everyday: a turkey sandwich with mustard on wheat bread, a cheese stick, a V-8, and a piece of fruit. This isn't far from my high school lunches, which consisted of lunch meat on wheat bread, a juice box, and a piece of fruit. Sometimes this habit is a result of laziness, or rather that I don't want to make big decisions in the wee hours while getting ready for school.

And even though I'm married to a man who likes breakfast for dinner and vice verse, I still like my breakfast foods for breakfast and my dinner foods for dinner. I am my mother's daughter, after all, the product of the creature of habit who taught me well.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Ms. Heuman, This is for You

I told you in the last post that I need to start writing things down. I have a small list swirling around in my brain that I need to write down before I forget. My high school English teacher, Ms. Heuman, will be proud.

I am still in sort of a writing funk, which I hope ends soon. Writing to me is therapeutic in a way, so I guess I'm not in need of much therapy these days! But, before I forget, I will write down my list (which is in no particular order):

-In search of good Chinese food
-Books that are piling up
-Creature of habit
-Facebook findings