Thursday, November 19, 2009

Haha, very funny

Well, those who read my Thanksgiving post and laughed, I guess the joke is on me. Sigh. I won't even pretend that it isn't amusing, because I know it really kind of is. Who really thought I was going to NOT cook for Thanksgiving? Yeah. No one I guess. So, we are no longer going out to eat and I am now in full-fledged manic-mania-crazy mode. Running out of time rapidly but would I really be happy if it wasn't totally last minute madness? Of course not. I apparently (allegedly I should say) thrive on stress and adrenaline. Sooooo, I am making yet another Thanksgiving menu and need to make sure I get my list together (would be good) and get my rear-end to the store before there is only 2 cans of cranberry and no cans of pumpkin left. I did get my turkey ordered, praise the Lord, and they told me tomorrow was the last day when I placed my I am really glad I fit that into my ridiculous schedule this week instead of waiting till Saturday like Mr. Troy thought would be just fine. People are shocked enough that we aren't having dressing (oh sure, I know that will change by Thursday too, you can stop giggling now) I can't imagine what would have happened when they showed up to a nicely roasted chicken on Thursday. Happy Thanksgiving everyone, I will post my new menu soon so that everyone can giggle some more. HA ha! Very funny! NEXT YEAR we are going out to eat. Umph! Gobble gobble gobble!

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Did you ever notice that some people have a lot higher opinion of themselves than those around them have of them? Do you call this a) Confidence b) Egotistical or c) Delusional?

Just curious.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Things I am Loving

Right now I am in totally in love with the following things....feel free to enjoy them all on your own too! I highly recommend!

  • Blakey (Oh. Wait. I digress. That one doesn't really count. Ahem. I will try and stay focused. It is just so hard because he is so darned cute! See for yourself! This is a picture after he came home from his first trip to the groomer- where he was an absolute angel. As I said the other day, he is my sugar pie, honey bunch, cuddle get the picture. I adore him.)

  • Blueberry and Cinnamon Sugar Bagels from Western Alternative Bagel Company (thank you to my sister-in-law for finding these for me!). I LOVE them and they are only 1 pt! I eat the blueberry ones with 1 TBS of ff strawberry cream cheese (.5 of a point) and the cinnamon ones with....wait for it....1 TBS of CHEESECAKE flavored cream cheese (1 pt and worth every drop). Yum yum YUM!

  • Turkey Burgers. We had NEVER tried these before this year and we have made them tons of different ways now and loved all of them! Thank you to AFFEI for sharing the first recipe that got us started and convincing me to live just a little bit and try something new. Man, am I ever glad I did!

  • Glee. Glee the show. Glee the people. Glee the music. I HEART Glee. If you haven't watched it yet- DO. It will make everything seem right with the world if for only one hour. It is hilarious, fun, silly, and smart. It is the most awesome show I have seen in a long time. I downloaded the CD they released last week and it has been blowing UP my iphone. It is fabulous and you can't help but smile, tap your feet, and sing along while you listen. Don't believe me? Just try it!

  • The Mentalist- this show is hilarious. I love it. I need to send Patrick Jane out with my workers!

  • Silly books about the paranormal. I have read all of the Stephanie Plum series (the holiday books are filled with paranormal activities), and all of the books ever written by Charlaine Harris. Now, I am reading the "Bewitching" series by Madelyn Alt and "Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye" by Victoria Laurie. I am reading these to give me some sort of an escape from my dreary, sad, and oft painful work life which involves reading about 40 cases a week that detail investigations of child abuse. I needed a diversion and I am finding it again in my old love- READING! I am trying (trying HARD) to make it a daily part of my life again and I am finding so much joy from doing so. Yay!

  • Finally, and hold on to your hats- because this one is the chart topper. Cover the kiddos' eyes because it is about to get rated PG-13. You have been warned! Solo. Grande. NON-FAT (that part is important, LOL). PEPPERMINT white chocolate mocha- no whip please- from Starbucks. This drink is....pure bliss. Orgasm in a cup. Heaven on Earth. What I believe must most definitely be served as the beverage of choice on the other side of the pearly gates. It is the most ridiculously amazing thing I have ever tasted in my life (okay Lorren, EXCEPT the chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake, but they aren't making that anymore so it has been replaced!) and I could drink one every day until I die. Unfortunately, it is only on the menu two or three months out of the year (might actually be a good thing), AND (worse) they are 8 pts a pop which is about how many points I should be having for dinner, and they say you really shouldn't drink your calories. For this, however, I will make an exception. I will eat zero point soup every day for three months just to enjoy this luxury. Ahhh, peppermint white chocolate mocha. I love you. I was in line the very first day this drink came back on the menu at Starbucks and I am pretty sure I have been back every day since. I am hungry as all get out but my taste buds are in pure euphoria. I did order sugar free white mocha and peppermint syrup from Torani online today. I am willing to give it a chance, for the sake of the size of both my bank account and my rear-end. But if it isn't up to snuff, back to the Starbucks line I go!

If you haven't tried these things yet, go on and make your heart and your tummy happy! Enjoy!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Love this kid

Yesterday, I called my mom on her cell phone to discuss my trauma over Troy making Blake go to the groomer for the first time and get some moral support. I was TERRIFIED they were going to.....heck. I don't know what I was so worried about but he is my little baby and I was nervous as all get out!

I found her watching Ice Age 3 with Shannon and Burim at their house. She endured my whining for a few moments before telling me she had to go and would talk to me later. UMPH! I was indignant while I was hanging up when I heard hollering in the background, "Are you still there? Hello?! Rebecca, did you hang up?" and I think she has had a change of heart about wanting to humor me for a few more minutes and I say, "Yes! I am here mom!" The next thing I heard was, "Hi Becca!" in this little bitty voice of pure, unadulterated sweetness and my mom says, "That was all, Burim just wanted to say hi." Then, I hear him tell his grandmother, in the most matter-of-fact and educational tone of voice, "She's my aunt." I busted out laughing and he made my whole entire day. My mom pretended to actually be educated by this information because, well, that's just what grandmas do.

Have a great week everyone. Hope someone brings a brilliant smile to your face over something as simple and pure as this.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A change is gonna do you good

Well, yesterday, I bit the bullet and made a decision. We are going out to eat for Thanksgiving. GASP!

Every year, I host Thanksgiving at my home and I make myself crazy (and spend a ton of $$$) making a humongous meal that is way too much food for any one family (or three or four) to eat. I love it. I have done it two days after being in a car accident that totaled my car and sent me to the ER in an ambulance. I have done it three days after having surgery on my jaw which caused nerve damage and I couldn't feel my face. I have done it two days after my great-grandmother passed away because we "already had the food" and we might as well cook it and eat before we loaded up for the trip home to Illinois. I have done it after working until 3 AM the night before because a case blew up before I could escape the office for the holiday.

Yes, I am a glutton for punishment and most would say I am just a martyr and like the madness. :-) I do think a lot of that is true, but mostly, I love to do it. I like the fact that I can single-handedly (okay my husband might take offense at that part because I do put him to work like I am the Nazi Chef in the Soup Kitchen on Seinfeld barking orders like a lunatic, "Stir that pot! Take that out of the oven! I need the blue pan not the green one!") put on a feast for 5 to 15 people and it tastes great and looks beautiful and everyone enjoys the meal and has a great time. It reminds me of my grandmother and makes me feel close to her every year when I carry out this amazing feat and think about how she did it for 20 years for up to three times the amount of people. I love having everyone at my house and I love thinking about the memories and the traditions that we are making here. I love the feeling of success when I crawl into bed after the last person has left and the last dish is washed and I collapse utterly exhausted and tremendously proud and happy.

This year, my sister is not coming to Thanksgiving with us (SOB!) and my grandmother, who was possibly going to come down, isn't going to be able to make it. My husband's family is doing a separate get-together on Friday following T-Day so they won't be here either. It is just going to be us, my mom, and Troy's mom. For four people, I just couldn't see putting out the spread. I picked up the phone, I called Texas de Brazil, and I made reservations for four. I should have felt a sense of relief....right? No work. No dishes. No hot oven heating up the house. No mess. No back ache from standing on the kitchen floor for 12 hours straight. This should be great....right?

I started thinking after I made the reservations that we were eating awfully early....and wouldn't we be hungry later? What would we eat without any leftovers? Nothing will be open that day! We must have food to eat....otherwise, we would die of starvation! That 11:00 all you can eat steakhouse dinner isn't going to tide you over indefinitely!!!

I know! What if I just prepare a "small" Thanksgiving big deal....for after the game? Then we could eat a little bitty Thanksgiving dinner that evening after the game and that way no one will die of starvation on our watch. My husband just looked at me and rolled his eyes. "Just do it," he told me. "But, you are ordering the turkey from Popeyes, I am not frying it." Me, smiling from ear to ear....."DEAL!" So, while this year won't be the big feast we normally have....we are still going to have our nice dinner at home and all will be right with the world because I AM just a glutton for punishment. Well, all will be right except Shannon and Burim not being here. I know it is only fair but I am still sad. :-(

Here is my menu:

Main Meal
Fried Turkey (4.5 pts for 3 ounces)
Mashed Potatoes (2 pts)
Broccoli Rice Casserole (4 pts)
Sweet Potato Casserole (4 pts)
Cranberries (2 pts)
Deviled Eggs (2pts for 1 egg)

Pumpkin Pie Smash (1 pt)
Bread Pudding (8 pts)
Banana Pudding (5 pts)
Pumpkin Pie Flan (4 pts)

Jalapeno Poppers
Crab and Shrimp Stuffed Mushrooms
Fruit and Vegetable Tray
Chips and Dips
I hope our meal at Texas de Brazil is lovely, I hope our meal at home turns out fabulously (I have never made a couple of the things on this menu and I am praying for them to all turn out for the big day!) and I hope we are all happy, healthy, and hopeful when we celebrate our blessings this year on our official day of Gratitude.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Yesterday was the greatest Halloween on record that I can remember as an adult. When we first got married, we always got so excited for Halloween and would buy tons of candy and wait for the little kiddos to come ring the doorbell and most of the time it happened a grand total of once or twice per night, so we gave up on Halloween about 5 or 6 years ago and started hiding in the dark with the porch light off praying no one would ring the doorbell and send our anti-social dogs into a psychotic barking frenzy.

This year, we had plans to meet my sister and go to a few houses for trick or treating with Burim, who is almost 4 years old now, and I had the bright idea that I would dress Blake the puppy up and trot him along with us. He has only walked on his harness a couple of times and both of those times occurred INSIDE the house. He hasn't been able to go outside at all until recently since he just got his second set of shots. But we still thought it would be cute and fun, so that was the plan.

I had wanted Blakers to be a cute pumpkin for his costume, but by the time we trekked to Petsmart, Petco, and Wal-Mart on Saturday morning, they were about cleaned out and we were advised that the XXS sizes sell out the most quickly and we shouldn't really wait till the last day. Thanks for the hot tip! Very helpful info at this juncture. Oh well, we found a Vampire cape on 75% off and so we packed it up for a grand total of $3 and that was to be the costume. I started panicking about how cold it was going to be so we switched costumes on our way out the door into a sweatshirt with metal studs on it that is appropriately labeled "stud muffin". Well, that was my first mistake of the night.

We load up and head to my sister's and she and Burim are waiting outside for us. I can hear him yelling, "They are here! They are here!" and boy howdy how my whole heart just melts. I can remember us talking when he was younger about how we couldn't wait for that time when he would get so excited and come running when we got there, just like I used to do with my grandparents. He is beside himself with his excitement over Blake being there as well. Apparently, he was living out some kind of dream because he told his mother earlier in the night, "But mommy, you said we would never, ever, ever, ever, have a dog inside our house!" Out of the mouth of babes. We start unpacking the car and Shannon tells Burim, "Burim, do you remember what costume Blake is going to wear tonight?" and he excitedly replies, "Yeah! A Dracula!!!" Mommy looks at me when I start shaking my head and reply, "Well.... not anymore, we changed costumes." Burim says, "What is he going to be now Becca?!?!" and I realize my error and start trying to think how I am going to explain to him that Blake is no longer going dressed as a vampire but instead as a "stud muffin"....whoops.

The following are some highlights of our wonderful evening that was filled with laughter, fun, chaos, and a headache. The headache was worth it though. So worth it!

-Burim takes me with him to the potty and instead of trying to help him get his clothes back on, I start telling him, no, time to take your clothes OFF and put your costume ON. He looks at me crazy and says, "Becca. The costume goes OVER your clothes." There was SUCH righteous indignation in his voice. Adults. Idiots.

-Burim getting frustrated with not being able to get something open. Mommy to Burim, "What should we do when we need help with something?" (in her most patient and elementary teacher like voice) and Burim walks over, leans his head on her shoulder and says, "Can you help me please Mommy?" Unfortunately for her, she was the only one that couldn't see him rolling his eyes at her. Of course, being the aunt and uncle, we had no problem ruining the delusion for her because his sarcasm was quite amusing to us. :-)

-Burim walks up to Blake and yells BOOOOOO. I say, "Burim, quit screaming at Blake, he is a baby." He informs me he is not yelling at him, he is playing a game with him, and it is called "Scare Tag". I say we are not going to play that game with Blake. Burim throws his hands up in the air and informs me, "BUT! BUT! That's the only game I have!" Poor kid.

-Going out for trick or treating and this is Blake's first time to walk on the leash/harness outside. Yeah. That lasted about hmmmmm, less than 5 seconds? He just stood in one spot and didn't move. So, the rest of the night consisted of me carrying my stud muffin around the neighborhood. He is just a TAD spoiled perhaps? I guess there will always be another opportunity for a "first" walk outside....time will tell.

-Burim tells one of the neighbor's who gives him candy (after he has asked her what her dog's name is and told the dog hello and a gamut of other questions she politely answered for him)....."Today. Is Halloween." He said this with all seriousness in quite the profound and matter of fact tone of voice. She was very sweet and said "Oh! Thank you for telling me!" LOL

-Burim again to a very nice older gentleman who asks him which race car driver he was..."No! I am on the Pit Crew!!!!" He knows his Nascar!

-We got a late start and Shannon's neighborhood isn't the greatest for trick or treating as it is and poor Burim was having a hard time getting people to come to the door. We had gone up and down the street already and told him we were going to go to "one more house". As we approached that last part of the street, the porch light went off. We looked at each other in horror and Troy sees another house up further that has their light on too. We tell Burim that THIS would be the last house instead. Ring the doorbell, no answer. Boo. We go walking back down the sidewalk and all of the sudden this perfect little trick or treater who has politely told each person "trick or treat" and "please and thank you" yells out loud, "I want SOMEBODY to GIVE ME SOME TRICK OR TREAT CANDY!" We couldn't help but crack up.

-Burim spent much of his night trying to convince me that we needed to give Blake water to drink or dog food to eat or even wanting to split his candy haul with him so that he could "share". I kept reminding him all night that he couldn't touch his dishes and that only Aunt Becca or Uncle Troy could give Blake anything to eat or drink. The thing about Burim is that he is so smart, sometimes you can see the wheels actually turning in his head and something you think he has long forgotten about, he has just spent his time formulating a new plan. All of a sudden, long after the trick or treating had ended, Burim comes up to me holding the cap to my water and the cap to Troy's water. They are both filled up with water from the sink. He holds out the two tiny caps and announces, "This is water for Blake to drink. It's not that much, but he was getting thirsty you know?" He was so thrilled that we actually let him give Blake the water to drink and his little giggle was enough to make up for his sneakiness. :-)

-Now, the night took a drastic turn for the worse and the much less cute when we all decided we would load up and head to the nearest Dairy Queen, which is like 15 miles away. Burim was HYPER by this point loaded up on candy and Halloween excitement, Blake was exhausted and he does NOT ride in the car well, and the adults were about over the holiday cheer. Burim proceeds to kick my seat over and over and over again. I finally turned around and told him if he didn't stop kicking my seat, Uncle Troy was pulling the car over and he wasn't going to like what happened next. He stops kicking my seat and proceeds to scream bloody murder (remember I mentioned the HEADACHE? Between his screaming, his mother's redirection, and my dog squealing like a piglet, I was a walking commercial for "Excedrine- the headache medicine") at the top of his lungs. His mother then says to him, "Burim Shabanaj, if you do not behave, Uncle Troy is stopping this car and he is going to SPANK YOU!" Everything got silent as a mouse. I leaned over to Troy and said, "Are you prepared to spank him?" He glares at me and says, "NO! What is WRONG with you two?!" I have to think that at this point his craving for a pumpkin pie blizzard must have really been feeling like a HUGE mistake. :-) Everyone settled down nicely when we got our goodies though and things went well until I heard Burim say, "Uh oh. We have an ice cream EMERGENCY!" (Why were we in MY car again?!)

Hope your Halloween was at least as great if not better and that you had at least half the amusement we had. I am sure there was even more exciting and amusing stuff that went on...but you know how I don't like to brag. Umph!

Happy Fall Y'all!