Hungry Money Beast

Paying bills and discovering just how poor one is, is not really my cup of herbal tea. I mean, I don't even like tea. I always try to drink it because people tell me it's a trick to staying thin. I always end up spitting it in the sink. That is how those people stay thin, they spit everything back out. I knew it.

Anyway, like I was saying, paying bills is a stressful situation. Today I was taking a great amount of time trying to figure out much we still owe the great big hungry beast, better known as the Hospital, and its mutinous cousin Crappy Insurance. I became so focused on bills and amounts paid and unpaid when I realized that my computer mouse was no longer working. Great this is just what I need. I looked down and realized I'd started using my cell phone as my mouse.

I filed and appeal with my insurance company. I'm now wondering if I can also appeal for charges that they are making me crazy. I'm sure it's nothing an all-expense paid trip to Hawaii couldn't cure.

Also, if anyone out there knows about an herbal tea that tastes good, I'd be open to suggestions. I've tried raspberry and peach, all to no avail.


Funny Alien Giant

Last night I had this dream. If it had not been so funny, it would have been horrific.

I dreamt that a large alien giant was on the loose. He had tentacles or crab claws or something for his head. He knocked on our door. For some reason, I knew he was after me. I ran into Gracie's closet and held my breath while Sean answered the door.

Alien Giant: Fee-Fi-Fo-Fum, I smell the blood of Au-tumn
Sean: Uh, she's not here, I think she's at the high school down the street
Alien Giant: Ugh! (turns and leaves)

I cannot stop laughing about this.


Losing a Limb

On my walks I pass a house. This particular house has a brown wood fence that comes about to my mid-arm. I can see everything in the backyard and everything can see me. This backyard is home to two large black dogs. These dogs love to run and pounce on the fence, their paws dangle over the fence as they bark in arrogant protection of their house. The entire thing is rather startling. I usually cross the street.

Sometimes, however, I forget to cross the street. This time only one black dog came bounding toward me. I instinctively searched for the second. He stood back a little, in the middle of the lawn, not moving, just looking. One of his back legs was totally gone.

I drew in my breath, I did not expect to see this. Ignoring the protest from the other dog to leave his bit of sidewalk, I simply looked at the dog. As I did, I felt my heart hurt for this dog. What had happened? What had gone so wrong? Then I looked into his eyes. That's when I saw it: the soul of the dog. I know it sounds corny, but in his eyes I saw pain, humility, and a gentle kindness. He was no longer the dog that ran to the fence, playful, full of spirit with a bark meant to intimidate. He'd grown past it, he knew better.

I fought the urge to cry as I walked away. It seems such a shame that everyone has to lose a limb sometime or another, whether it be a physical malady or a deep emotional wound before the eyes begin to glisten with wisdom instead of false arrogance, when love shines through instead of competition, when our eyes reflect previously unknown strength,when faith breaks the clouds of darkness because now we know that we survived and we are better.


Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday to the most wonderful woman I've ever had the pleasure and honor of knowing...My mom. I love you and thanks for all the years you've spent helping and raising me. Now that I'm a mom I'm only beginning to truly appreciate your commitment and sacrifice on my behalf.

Happy Birthday! Now go do something wild, like, dance with the lions while on an African Safari...no, wait, that's how I want to celebrate. You do whatever will make you happiest.

Navigating the Egg Free Terrain

As many of you know, Gracie is allergic to eggs. I discovered this after she ate a ton of scrambled eggs. She ate the eggs, then I packed her up, took her to a Relief Society meeting and stuck her in the nursery. It was past her bedtime and when I went to get her, her eyes were red and puffy. I could barely see her eyes. I thought "oh my, she is so tired, her eyes are swollen shut." I was a very new mom still. That entire night I kept wondering what baby would rub their eyes so much that they would swell shut? Wouldn't they stop after awhile? The next morning her eyes were a little bit better, but I called my doctor. A trip to the allergist later, ta da! She is officially allergic to eggs. Since then I have scoured every label to every food product possible. I have attempted to make many egg free things (mostly using a special powder), some have worked, some haven't. Cakes cannot be made without egg. Some cookies turn out okay, most muffins turn out wonderful.

It only took me a year to realize that if I asked for vegan meals or products, it saved me a whole lot of trouble. The idea just hadn't occurred to me. Usually, I just ask workers if their products contain eggs. Please read the following experience

Location: The Pretzel Place

Me: Do your products have eggs?

Employee: (blank stare...long pause)....I don't know

Me: (used to this buy now) Do you have a list of the ingredients?

Employee: I don't know, let me see. (is gone for one second while she dives underneath the counter) No, it looks like we don't, but I would think there are eggs in these. All my breads have eggs in them.

Me: Ok thanks.

I left outraged that there wasn't an ingredient list, let alone that I know that most breads, unless cake breads or pastries do not have eggs. If it was a bread dough, then the pretzels most likely did not have eggs. Anyway...The other day Sean and I wanted waffles really bad, but most waffles, to be good, need eggs. He did an online search and walla! If you search for vegan waffles a number of delicious recipes appear. I felt so happy that I discovered to ask for vegan products. My life is so much easier now, because even if employees don't know if stuff contains eggs, they will know if something is vegan.

And whether or not you are allergic to eggs, you must try this waffle recipe. We eat them about twice a week, and store the extra in the freezer. They make a great and easy treat for Gracie.

* 1 ripe banana, mashed
* 2 cups water
* 1/2 cup uncooked oatmeal
* 1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
* 2 teaspoons baking powder
* 1 teaspoon cinnamon
* 1 teaspoon nutmeg
* vanilla extract to taste (optional)

Mix together the mashed banana and water. Add dry ingredients and mix, leaving lumps in the batter. Vegan waffles: Cook on a waffle iron, according to the manufacturer's instructions. Pancakes: Pour 1/2 cup of batter into a hot, lightly oiled frying pan. When bubbles rise through the middle of the pancake and break on the top, flip the pancake and cook until browned underneath. (Note: Test the pan before cooking the pancakes by throwing a few drops of water onto it. If the water jumps around and then disappears, the pan is at the correct temperature.)
Serve for breakfast or dessert; add margarine and top with sweet syrups, fruits, or preserves. This vegan waffle recipe takes less than five minutes to prepare, not including cooking time.
You must leave lumps in the batter. Vegan waffle or pancake batter which is too smooth will spread out very thin on the waffle iron or pan, and the result will be a rubbery, tough cake. The batter doesn't freeze well but can be refrigerated for a short time. Waffles can be made in large quantities and frozen for future use; this is a good option if your waffle iron is small! As shown, recipe makes roughly four waffles; the number of pancakes will vary according to size. Recipe can be doubled.


I'm Sorry, I really am.

I am trying to limit the amount of sugar I ingest. Yes, because I want to lose weight, but also to just be healthy. I have a raging sweet tooth, something I developed while working in the news. Often times a bag of skittles and a peanut butter cup were the only things that got me through an extended overnight shift. I soon became totally reliant upon sugar. I have my times of the day when I need it, one of them being right, now, which is why I am eating a cup of berries and yogurt instead.

This is not the first time I have tried this by a long shot, but this time I am being serious about it, because besides the sugar, I have developed another bad habit: portion sizes. That's right. Nine months of pregnancy followed by a year, yes, a year of nursing has me to the point that I can no longer tell when I am full and when I am not. When I was prego and nursing I could eat anything all day long and not really worry about weight gain. Not anymore. Not anymore.

So kicking these habits is making my cranky, very cranky. I truly apologize if you meet me on the street corner and I snap at you for not wearing the right color of shoes, it's the lack of sugar and lack of food talking. I generally am a pretty nice person.


Here's Hoping

Okay world look out. I've got my hair in pink foam curlers. Now, for most people this is a pretty scary ordeal, but if done correctly, I've seen some truly spectacular hair. But, I'm not sure how it's going to work for me, because my hair is thicker than the amazon jungle. It was always thick, but after having a baby, it grew in thicker and NEVER FELL OUT. I hear stories of woman pulling clumps of hair out after they give birth. Nope, no sir, not with me. As a result, my hair just keeps getting bigger. It truly is to the point of being comical. And to make matters worse, I recently cut my hair and fear I look like a triangle head. I've had it thinned on a number of occasions, but nothing seems to help.
(I hope you don't find this too annoying, I know I might sound like one of those skinny people that complain about how clothes don't fit them).

Anyway, I am always searching for a faster, easier way of doing my hair. After Gracie's burn, I would just rather not touch anything other than the blow dryer and my round brush, but that gets old and results in the aforementioned triangle head. I really hope the curlers work. They only took about 10 minutes to put in, and it's not like I'm going anywhere this afternoon so I can wear them all day.

As an added bonus Gracie finds them fascinating. She keeps pointing at my head and saying "touch". I'll see if I can't document the results.


Perfect Afternoon

The warm breeze blowing in from my window, rushing over my bare feet...
My head light with the refreshment of a nap...
Flipping the pages of my favorite magazine...
My daughter taking a rare, beautiful, long nap...


Working out the kinks

I think I've got all the posting and comments kinks worked out now. I'm still trying to figure everything out. Please let me know if something isn't working. - Thanks


Scene: Gracie is in the tub, having fun with her toys when she accidentally spots Sean's belly button. Why it was exposed, I have no idea. It just was.

Gracie: Be Bo (points to Sean's belly button)

Sean: Yep, that's my be bo

Gracie: Garbage (points to Sean's belly button)

Sean: (looks down) Yeah, I guess your right. (pulls out a piece of flint)

Smell Myself

Okay, so I promised myself that I would, no matter what the circumstances may be, never blog again before bedtime. Every time I do, I lay in bed and blog in my mind for the next two hours. But, my friends, some things are too good to NOT be shared, no matter what the hour, that and I can still smell my hair.

Here's the story. Today I went to Trolley Square to see the movie Waitress (the movie will require another post), and on my way out I stopped at Tabula Rosa. They sell stationary and.... can your feel it? Are you as excited as I am?....Perfume!

Here's a picture of it:

I plucked it off the shelf and thought "my what a pretty bottle, maybe I will spritz myself." I ended up taking a bath with the tester bottle. Holy cow. It's hard to explain what it smells like. The website http://www.lollialife.com/product.asp?p=89 says all sorts of things like Italian Bergamont, Vanilla, and rice flower, I say it smells like sugar butter. I'm not sure who is right.

So, I spray myself and leave the store. Half an hour later I find that I can't peel my wrist away from my nose. It is permanently planted there. Just to make sure I'm not crazy, I make my friend Mary sniff me too. She likes it as well. Then when I get home I shove my wrist onto my husband's and Gracie's nose. Sean thinks it smells really nice too. I'm not sure he said it because he really likes it or because I was acting like a maniac. Sweet Gracie, gave me a confused look and just held my wrist.

Fast forward five hours. I am out of the tub, and let my hair down and woosh the perfume scent comes back, I did say I bathed in it, and it's as luscious as ever. There's my story, thank you for listening. I now feel a little bit better, in fact, good enough to lay in bed and make posts in my head for the next two hours.


I think I stumbled into Heaven

There are a few things I salivate over more than office supplies. A cute folder has been known to actually bring tears to my eyes. A pen that writes smoothly time and time again finds a spot on the beloved mantle which is my nightstand. A notebook that is practical and yet whimsical sets my imagination wild with possibilities. So, sometimes when I get a little bored, I daydream of my perfect office filled with my perfect supplies. An office that is at once both lovely and well-organized. An office, that if I had it, I would be sure to write America's next great novel while admiring my charming sticky notes. Here are some possible ideas:

Right now, I live in a small apartment, and this would be the perfect size. It's totally dreamy, yet comes with drawers so I could keep my pens safe from little hands. There's an even extra big drawer, for my extra big ideas. Pottery Barn will one day receive my business, but it would best if they didn't hold their breath.I almost wet myself when I saw this. Are you kidding me? A classy way to tote my manuscripts around? It's enough to make me actually want to print them and share them with people. If I had this, I would be tempted to pull out my current work-in-progress and ask the old man in the grocery store line his opinion. And just when you think it doesn't get any bette, they also make matching folder and sticky notes. Excuse me while I wipe my eyes. This delicious folder can be found at http://www.galison.com/ (many thanks to Harmony for the reference).
And if I'm being extra spendy, I can picky up this framed cork board from Pottery Barn while purchasing my desk. For a mere $150 I'd have an actual place to store my random thoughts, little bits of interesting paper, poems, and postcards that I buy for myself. I know there is a cheaper way to do this, and I might just have to look in to it. But seeing as crafts cause me to get nervous and sweat, I might have to leave this idea in my dreams where it sits nicely above my office.


What do you want to be?

I love to write. That is all. Have I wanted to be a writer all my life? No...not by a long shot. Here is a list of some of my would-be professions had a better thing not come along.

Before I could speak: Dancing was and still plays a very large role in my life. I love every kind of dance. I love ballet, jazz, contemporary...I could go on and on, but unfortunately, a girl needs to make a living. I needed to find something new.

2nd grade: I wanted to a be a poet so bad my toes actually ached at the thought of it. In hopes of encouraging this talent, my parents purchased me Shel Silverstein books, and many other books, for which I am still grateful. But, as it turns out, I am not a very good poet. I needed to move on.

3rd grade: This was my heavy scientist phase that lasted for some time. My parents shelved the poem books and bought me a microscope. I loved looking at things underneath it. The little bits of dirt, the bugs, the rocks, my eyelashes that got in the way. I even hatched my own brine shrimp farm, which my brother accidentally spilled. I wiped away a steady stream of tears as my mom, or dad, or someone else vacuumed it up. I am still too distraught to remember the details. This phase lasted clear until my sophomore year in high school when I discovered that I was a complete loser at chemistry. I could understand biology with no problem, but chemistry, I tell you what. Those pesky electrons and neutrons still annoy me. I flushed my dreams of becoming a scientist along with becoming a doctor down the nearest safety drain.

12th grade: A Reporter! That is what I'll be. My senior year was the year I found out I could major in TV. What a boon! I love TV! I may as well be on it! Yeah! This excitement swallowed and devoured the next eight years of my life, where I went on to major in broadcast journalism, intern in New York for the Today Show, and eventually -after hearing one million curse words -land a job as a segment news producer.

Current: Mom and writer. I now have the job I've always wanted. Didn't know it then, but know it now. In between playing games and filling sippy cups for my sweet daughter, I've discovered I have approximately 900 notebooks floating around my house, each one of them filled with creative writing. It's funny that it took me staying at home, spending time with myself to discover what it is I truly love, my family and words. Now that I don't have to search for it, I actually found it.


Hello dear world, I finally have a blogspot blog. I've had another blog for some time now, but it keeps having technically difficulties and I'm sick of it. So welcome, leave comments, eat a cupcake, take a nap, but most importantly enjoy yourself.

just checking my new blog out...