I would like to take a moment to
brag mention that Miss Munchkin has one of her photographs featured on the front page of the official Kansas government website. I'm so jealous proud (sniff, sniff).
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
I recently posted about movies for my daughter so I thought I'd throw out a few gems for the boys in your family.
We love, love, love the old-fashioned good vs. evil, packed-full of adventure shows. I have found a gold mine now that so many of the cartoons from the 60s and 70s are now readily available on DVD. Some of Master Munchkin's favorites include Superfriends (the OLD ones, not the new ones), Space Ghost & Dino Boy, Birdman & the Galaxy Trio, Star Trek: The Animated Series (1973), Aquaman and Jonny Quest (1964). A lot of these involve a hero saying things like, "I am here to thwart your evil plans!" and funny little sidekicks named "Tusky", the walrus. They are good, clean fun. As a parent, I don't have to worry about any sexual inuendo that has snuck into so many of the cartoons today.
You can buy whole series of these shows for dirt cheap, espcially right now on Amazon. I'm getting ready to pick up a box set of Flash Gordon from the 40s. It's nice to have something on hand for those long, hot days of Summer!
I fell in love with these adorable jars of jam the first time I saw them. I was browsing through a European grocery store, searching for a unique gift for a friend when I saw them sitting on the shelf. Simple, yet deliciously elegant. "Perfect!" I thought, and scooped one into my basket.
Fast forward a few weeks: I was shopping at my regular grocery store when I spotted something familiar on the shelf. My French jam! My unique and one-of-a-kind gift! After I recovered somewhat from my shock and denial, I decided I'd better buy one. To keep in the pantry for company, of course.
Fast forward a few days: I licked the last of the thick, red gooey goodness directly off of the plate. After all, I told myself, it would be rude to offer guests something that I hadn't actually tried myself. What if it was horrid? Um, it wasn't. It was the richest, sweetest, yummiest jam that I have ever tasted. I hid the jar in the back of the fridge and polished it off in 3 days.
If you are hankering for some very good French, not-so-unique or hard-to-find jam, I heard that they are offering it in select Walmart stores now. Ack! I can't believe I got my friend some Walmart jam for a gift!
Monday, April 27, 2009
As the parent of a 14 year-old daughter, I am always on the lookout for good, clean movies that she can watch. I recorded a movie off of the Hallmark Channel recently and had the chance to curl up on the couch and watch it yesterday. Well, actually I was interrupted 8 times by various family members and "urgent" situations (Mom - what did you do with my slingshot?) but I really enjoyed Daniel's Daughter and will happily let Miss Munchkin see it. In fact, I think I'll watch with her - I'd love to see it again. By the way, I think the main actress, Laura Leighton, is a dead ringer for someone with whom you may be familiar. Any guesses?
One of the websites that I came across when researching this movie is a delightful gem that I promptly bookmarked for further reference. Moviepics hunts down and finds all of those good, clean movies that you can feel good about showing your family. They recommend movies both in the theater and on TV. If this is something you're interested in, check out their CAMIE awards.
Have you seen any treasures lately?
Saturday, April 25, 2009
Welcome to Springtime in Kansas!
This afternoon I was interrupted from scratching in my vegetable garden by the first tornado warning of the season. Kansas ranks only behind Texas and Oklahoma in the average number of tornado in the US; we get about 50 per year. However, despite living in Kansas for 15 years, I've never seen a real-live tornado. Several years ago, one did touch down less than a mile from our home, causing damage to our town, but I didn't see it - I was in the basement!
Friday, April 24, 2009
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Master Munchkin brought me a handful of wild onions that he found in the yard. He was so proud. He keeps asking me to "make a stew" with them. I think I might just have to do that!
Update: this morning I fixed scrambled eggs with bacon bits, goat cheese and snips of wild onion. The little rascal wouldn't even try them.
"Moooom," he protested. "You know I don't like onions in my eggs. Just soups and stew."
Miss Munchkin and I have our martial arts class tonight. We've been taking it together for fun, fitness, and self-defense. One of things we've been working on this month is a Tornado kick. Of course, she's picked it up right away and can whirl and kick and looks quite cool doing it. Me, not so much. My tornado is more of a gentle breeze. A limpy, wimpy gust of air. It's certainly not deadly or dangerous (except, maybe, to myself).
Wish me luck tonight. I'm going to need it!
Monday, April 20, 2009
My new favorite Spring snack is to mix together vanilla yogurt with blueberries then add a splash of honey and a few shakes of dried lemon peel. You can substitute strawberry slices for the blueberries and/or ricotta cheese for the yogurt but you can not, repeat, can NOT leave out the lemon peel or honey. Trust me. Oooookaaaay, if you don't have lemon peel, dried orange peel will work. But you need one or the other. It all merges together into a magical, Springy combination.
Sunday, April 19, 2009
Saturday, April 18, 2009
Thursday, April 16, 2009
This cute kid comes over occasionally to play with Master Munchkin. Not only is he utterly adorable, he is polite and sweet and fun. And did I mention cute?
I keep trying to convince his mom to let me keep him.
Just for a year or two. :)
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
My sister-in-law recently started a cake decorating business.
We got together over the Easter weekend to celebrate some family birthdays and she had made three (3) of her beautiful cakes! Well, I certainly didn't want to be rude, so I simply HAD to sample each of them. Repeatedly. Oh MY! They looked like gorgeous, bakery-baked cakes, but tasted homemade. Not my homemade (from a box), but real, from-scratch homemade. Even the icing was delicious. She sent home the leftovers and we have been enjoying cake ever since. Cake for breakfast. Cake for a nice mid-morning snack. Cake for dessert. Cake for that last, late-night feast. It's that good.
I just got back from Kickboxing this morning and had 3 pieces. You know, to keep up my strength and to replenish any calories that I might have lost.
Curse you, Tina, and your gorgeous cakes too!
Monday, April 13, 2009
You may remember my Issue with plastic water bottles. Well, these children's dishes recently caught my eye. Not only are they really cute, they are made without plastics so you don't have to worry about chemicals leaching into your child's food. I'm thinking that these would make a great baby shower gift.
Sunday, April 12, 2009
Saturday, April 11, 2009
Friday, April 10, 2009
Master Munchkin turned eight last week. Now that he's older, I've detected a slight change in his line of questions.
Master Munchkin: If you dropped a baseball into a bucket of acid or hot lava and 1 quark went away every year, would it take over a gogool years for it to dissolve?Sigh. I remember the days with questions about the color of the sky and whether or not the car next to us was speeding. Those, I could answer. Most of the time.
Me: Um...(stalling) What do you think?
Master Munchkin: I don't know. I was asking Dad if there are over a Gogool Plex of quarks in the whole universe and he said, "No." But, if the universe goes on forever, then I think there are.
Me: What's a quark?
Heaven help me.
Thursday, April 09, 2009
Happily my mother gave me a book for my birthday called, Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. The whole premise behind this book is that you mix up a large batch of wet dough and store it in the fridge. Then it is easy to just lop off some dough and bake a loaf whenever you want to. The "Five Minutes" doesn't include the time the dough needs to rest or baking time. Five minutes is about how long you have to mess with it if you want to make a loaf from the batch.
To make the Batch, stir the ingredients together and let them rise in a plastic container with a lid. I want to get one of those food grade 6 qt mixing buckets. Right now I use a Tupperware container.
When you are in the mood for some crusty nirvana, lop off some dough and quickly shape it into a flatish ball. Then walk away and let the dough take a little rest. Just about long enough for you to get in a capnap of your own.
This bread needs steam to make a proper crust. This is easily achieved by adding a cup of water to a pan on the shelf beneath the bread.
Bake in a hot oven and try not to drool while waiting for the timer.
I was amazed at how easy this bread is to make and how good it tastes. The loaf came out crusty on the outside and chewy on the inside. Let's just say it didn't last long.
This morning Master Munchkin asked, "Mom, will you make that yummy bread again?"
Yes son. Yes, I will. And if you're lucky, I'll save you a piece.
You can try it out here.
Tuesday, April 07, 2009
Extra credit if you can site the work from which the quote was taken. Guess before you click on the boxes - they will reveal the correct answers.
Sunday, April 05, 2009
So here is the Tornado Kick. My only condolence is that I have 3 months to learn it. I will probably need every minute.