Saturday, February 27, 2010

Soup and the Ingrates

Last night I made a really yummy soup.  But you wouldn't know it - my family wouldn't even try it!  Luckily Miss Munchkin's friend snarfed down a bowl or I might have become a bit paranoid.  Apparently the Master was opposed to the tomatoes and Miss Munchkin was opposed to, I don't know, the nutrition?  The heartwarming fuel for the soul?

Anyway, I thought it was delicious and had 2 bowls.  Humph!

Here's the recipe, in case you would like torture your family or wish to feel despised and rejected.

Ingrate Soup

1 lb andouille sausage or other precooked spicy smoked sausage, cut into bite-sized chunks
1 large onion, chopped
6 garlic cloves, chopped (I used minced from a jar)
3 cans of cannellini or white kidney beans, rinsed
1 can of diced tomatoes (I like Hunt's fire-roasted)
Chicken broth, about 30 oz.
1 tsp dried oregano
6 cups of fresh spinach leaves, chopped

Shredded Parmesan cheese, get the good stuff

Cook the onions in a splash of olive oil until almost done, add garlic and cook for a few minutes.  Add sausage and stir until things are nicely coated and cooked.  Add everything else except the spinach and cheese.  Cook, uncovered for 10 minutes.  Add spinach and heat just until wilted.  Serve with Parmesan cheese.

Here's the original recipe.  It takes a bit more work/time.  But if your family has exquisite taste and impeccable manners, go for it!

A Little Bit Country

A whole lot of Wow.

Some friends of ours built their dream home in the country and I got to explore this beautiful house and take pictures before they moved in.

Check out these windows!  All that gorgeous light made me giddy.

The owner incorporated a few original parts from her grandmother's farmhouse.  How sweet is that?  Here you can see the old knob and the white wooden closest door. 

And look at the fabulous farmhouse sink in the kitchen.

Congrats on your new house Brian and Angie!  It's beautiful.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Some Linky Love

I don't know if you've noticed the "All Astonishment" button I've placed on the side of my blog.  It is my first attempt at designing a Blog Button and it definitely could be improved upon.  I think the font is smallish and hard to read (especially when you're nearing 40!) and I'll probably redo it at some point.  But for now, here it is.  MrMama wrote the HTML code underneath and, if you copy and paste it, it should place the button on your blog or website.  And it should link back here.  If you try it, let me know how it works!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Winter Princess

Winter Princess, originally uploaded by MrsMama.
Another shot from Miss Munchkin's first formal school dance.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Out of the Mouths of Munchkins

"Mom!  Look at this icicle - it's impeccable!"  Master Munchkin

Miss Munchkin: Does my bottom look weird?
Me: Noooo, why?
Miss Munchkin: I'm wearing corduroy.  Corduroy always makes bottoms look weird.

Master Munchkin, upon seeing his sister's math book, in his best movie announcer voice: Algerbra 2: It's back.  And this time it's bad!

Master Munchkin: What's Calculus?
Me: I don't know; I never took it.
Master Munchkin: Of course you didn't; You're a free spirit!

Monday, February 22, 2010


Did you know if you park near enough to a trendy coffee shop, you can pick up Internet on your laptop without actually going in?  Just be sure to wear a hat and sunglasses because, I mean, how pathetic is that?  It is obviously the act of a desperate woman who has limited bandwidth at home, and has gone over that limit 3 months in a row, resulting in Large Bills and Uncomfortable Talks from her husband.

Happily, my, er, I mean her bandwidth resets tomorrow, which means she can blog again!  And catch up on Facebook and emails and friend's blogs.  Oh Joy!  Oh Happy Day!

One last word of advice, if one needs to resort to such desperate measures, one should not play the teenage daughter's CD that is in the CD player.  Enthusiastic head-bopping does not help one maintain a low profile.  Just sayin'.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

I Can See Clearly Now

My new glasses are in!  You inspired me to try something new so here they are:

They are coppery brown with a cool design on the side and teal on the inside. 

I love them!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Grunt Work

In our martial arts class we are encouraged to make a lot of "noise".  It not only helps us remember to breathe, but it can intimidate an attacker or draw attention to us if we are being attacked.  A grunt, a growl, a yell, a kiai,  whatever.  As a woman, it was really hard for me to do this at first.  After all, ladies are expected to be quiet and polite, demure, etc.

Now that I've been training for a few years, it has become more natural.  Perhaps a little too natural.  I've noticed that I make noise whenever I'm doing something physically challenging or at all exerting.  This isn't an issue at home or in class, but when I'm at the grocery store, lifting a heavy bag of cat food, I get a few strange looks.  The other day I was trying to plug in the coffee maker at church and the cord didn't want to cooperate.  I gave it a good push, along with a loud grunt, and it wisely gave up.  Perhaps that's why the other ladies in the kitchen stopped making eye contact.  At a fancy Italian restaurant, a little piece of bruschetta took a bit of convincing and a noisy "unh!" to break in half.  I didn't look around but I'm sure lots of people heard me.  At least I didn't go "Hi-Yah!".

Yet. :)

Saturday, February 13, 2010

In Which We are Stealthy

Our family has been enjoying the "Fight Science" TV series on National Geographic.  After watching this, the Munchkins set up their own laser maze in the basement.  They spent quite awhile sneaking though the deadly beams of string while trying to complete specific missions.  Who knew you could have so much fun from a skein of yarn?

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Who's a Bad Boy?

Last night I accidentally left my prescription glasses on the arm of the couch in the living room.

This morning I found this:

I guess it was just too much of a temptation for a puppy!  My life is going to be a bit blurry for the next week or so - these were my only pair.  By the way, Trooper didn't get in too much trouble; I was the one who left them within munching range. 


To see what else the dog has eaten, see Busy Boy and Bad Dog!

Friday, February 05, 2010


Motivation, originally uploaded by MrsMama.

I made this motivational poster today. I think it pretty much sums it up.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Isn't it Romantic?

"And what's romance?  Usually, a nice little tale where you have everything as you like it, where rain never wets your jacket and gnats never bite your nose, and it's always daisy-time."  D.H. Lawrence

Like many ladies, I am a sucker for Romance.  Especially this time of year.  I wanted to share some of the things that make my heart go Pitter Patter.

Favorite Romantic Song:  "The Kiss" from the Last of the Mohicans movie soundtrack.  Sigh.

Romantic Books:  Anything by Lynn Kurland.  She writes clean, funny and uber romantic stories involving Time Travel, castles, Scotland, and manly heroes who wear swords and know how to use them.  I recently finished Dreams of Stardust and am still sighing.

Romantic Decorating: check out these lovely decor ideas from French Larkspur.  Oh MY.

Romantic Movies: Emma from 1999, Pride and Prejudice (A&E version, of course), Sense and Sensibility (1999).  Love these.

Miss Munchkin's Favorite Romantic Movies:  all of the above plus... While You were Sleeping, The Love Come Softly series, Though None Go With Me and A Walk to Remember.

Perfume: I've already blogged about this so just go here.

And I'm still waiting for my kiss in the rain.  

So, what makes your heart go Pitter Patter?

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

My Funny Valentine

My Funny Valentine, originally uploaded by MrsMama.
I put this together for Miss Munchkin's Valentine Day cards this year. I did the post processing in Lightroom and used Big Huge Labs to make the mosaic. I think it turned out really cute!

Monday, February 01, 2010