Thursday, August 28, 2008

effing preschool

The preschool drama continues. The women that was hired for the boy's class worked two days, received another offer, and quit yesterday morning. Oh joy. His class starts on Tuesday. His room is not done, there is no teacher, nor a substitute. What is that noise you ask? Just me, I am banging my head against the wall! Repeatedly.

Baby girl is dealing with Mommy's horrible mood by getting her shop on.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

I was so mad she was given a time out. She being the car.

I thought that I would grace you all with my opinions about the DNC. How great I thought HIllary's speech was. How we can't keep continuing the idea of trickle down economics but instead need to empower everyone. You know the adage "your only as strong as your weakest link" thing. But instead I am going to complain about the mama mobile. The DVD player in it hasn't worked since May. Taking the princess in to the dealer is a horrible experience. You need to leave it the entire day. The husband generally high tails it to some foreign country like Texas when she needs her little check ups. I waited as long as possible. I could handle the "are we there yets for a while."

So, yesterday, I drive her in at 8 am, remove car seats, schlepp car seats and children into dealership for the little chat at the desk. (This is even more fun with an infant seat.) Then children, car seats, and yours truly wait in the kid area until the shuttle shows up. (All other areas are off limits to my children, there is friggin art glass vases on shelves sprinkled about and don't get me started on marble bathrooms with cloth hand towels.) This process yesterday took an hour and a half. She needed her oil changed and some ten million point inspection they do. She tells me repeatedly when she is due every time I start her up. So after getting the reminder letter and emails I bit the bullet and took her in. At the cute little desk I attempted to explain her kid babysitter, i.e. the dvd player, was no longer working, driving longer than an hour was becoming a nightmare please fix it. Then after waiting an hour and a half I loaded children, car seats, pregnant self into the shuttle. (Which this time happened to be a very nice dealer car because they couldn't find the shuttle driver.) Did anyone help the nice pregnant lady with the pleasant boy and the tantrum throwing girl carry car seats???? NO! So when the gentleman riding in the front passenger seat got to get dropped off first (for the Colorado people, read: IN ERIE!!!!) I became annoyed.

Once home I mellowed. Both children took a nap. And who should call during the nap but the good old dealership stating princess was ready to be picked up. I once again explained I would need the shuttle. To which I was told, he'll give you a call. So 20 minutes later Mr. Shuttle called, where do you live. I told him.

"I live at 13-- T--j---.

"OK on P---."

"No, on T--."

"Oh, I see P--G--."

"No it is Spanish there is both a T as in Tom and a J in that word."

Then he says I get it now. And for those of you familiar with my street name he says it like it is spelled. Now I ask you, do you pronounce the j in fajita?

Then I plead with him to pick me up later so I don't have to wake the kids up. After explaining the not so quiet riot that would occur he agreed.

After arriving at the destination I plunked down the $140 for the oil change and whatever else they do to it. And yes you read that correctly. I was told the DVD player didn't work because the fuse was out. He explained to me that the fuse is located with the accessory set so the voltage cell phone plug in thing (it used to be a cigarette lighter in older cars) can cause it to short out. Some cell phone chargers do that. However, I don't charge fancy schmancy phone in the car, but DO remember a boy sticking a penny into the no longer a cigarette lighter thing. Oops.

So after schlepping kids, car seats, belly back into the mama mobile I turned the babysitter on and it worked. We stopped off at the library which is all of ten minutes away so I could put a book on hold. When we got back to the car the DVD player was no longer working. My blood pressure was pretty high. After a few choice words I took us home and changed the batteries in the remote (the piece of shit only works by remote) but that didn't work. SOOOOOOO, tomorrow I get to do this all over again.

Princess did receive a gold star on Sunday however, she only cost me $67.05 to fill her up as opposed to the usually $82. I was doing the oh so dorky happy dance at the gas station.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

From pickles to Mr. Cruise

Well it's a boy. Now we have that out of the way. His blogger name is the boy fetus, until he is born then probably something quite creative like baby boy. Boy fetus likes to kick a lot. 

Other things going on:

1. We made 22 jars of pickles on Saturday. Now the hard part is letting them sit for a couple weeks. They are so yummy. 

2. The DNC has made driving to Cherry Creek Mall take an hour, but provided some very interesting sites. I have never seen so many people downtown before, unless a Rockies game just let out. I also have never in my life seen a swat team and on Sunday I saw three. Plus a lot of protesters. In some areas of the "protest section" right in front of the capitol it looked like 1968. As far as the dress was concerned. There were conservative protesters as well, but they looked like they had just hopped out of the mini van wearing red white and blue. I want to go back down there and wander around. 

3.  After seeing Tropic Thunder on Sunday night (which is rather amusing) I have some advice for Tom Cruise:  Please keep your shirt on in public. I realize there was make up and fat suits involved and you were funny in the movie but I want to remember you as Maverick. 





Wednesday, August 20, 2008

just breathe into the paper bag

Sorry Jennie can't blog today she is curled up in the fetal position hyperventilating. She knows that good preschool does not mean the boy will be granted admission to Harvard, but let's face it she is a soccer mom with nothing else to worry about. So she has focused all of her energies on preschool, mainly on the fact that with less than two weeks to go the boy suddenly does not have a teacher. Jennie was looking forward to four mornings without the wild child and felt he would be receiving superior instruction. Learning Mandarin, calculus, physics, organic chemistry, and Russian Revolutionary History. He was going to become a genius, go on Oprah, write a book and Jennie could sit back and retire. But now all of her dreams have been dashed by the haphazard class switching. Now her hopes are for less nose picking, sitting still during story time, and an occasional letter learning. He learned these things last year but one never knows what stays in a boy's brain over summer vacation. She is pretty sure he will never learn to read, write his name correctly, and will be incarcerated by the ripe old age of seven. 

Poor Jennie. 

Monday, August 18, 2008

the husband grows up

It all started when two kids out in California, serving in the Navy met. The Vietnam War had ended the world seemed to be going better. The two kids got married and five minutes later someone was pregnant. (I am sure there had to have been Coors Light involved.) He was their first, their boy. The one who was completely WILD and unruly. Eventually he grew out of his wild ways (well, for the most part.) He served his country, got his degree, took a very painful CPA exam, and now play the role of middle peon at KLAND.  A few years back he met the girl of his dreams! They had babies. They are still having babies. (Sheesh.) Today is the husband's birthday.

Now is the time to avert your eyes if you are squeamish to mushy talk: 

Mr. the husband, 
You are my entire world and everything in my life has be truly blessed since you entered it. You are an excellent father, a wonderful pet owner, and the best husband. You have given me everything I have ever wanted and more. I am so glad that your crazy parents got together and of course that I am terrible in Algebra and transferred to your class. (I always knew there was a reason for my math stupidity! Fortunately for KLAND it didn't rub off.) Thanks for the ride home that day. 

Happy Birthday My Love.


~Jennie

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Airman Manny


While my family was busy hiking up Longs Peak last Sunday and I was spending the day enjoying the children's company all to myself because we all know THAT rarely happens and in between eating the salt and vinegar chips, and then tortilla chips because I NEEDED salsa, then some Cherry Garcia, and the last half of the $4 box of sweet tarts from Momma Mia the day before it occurred to me...THE MANNY IS LEAVING FOR BASIC TRAINING IN TWO DAYS!!!! Holy scheisse. He left yesterday and currently I am expecting he is being yelled at, running, NOT getting his head shaved because he is already bald, and ironing some underwear. It is my understanding that you learn more important matters like cleaning toilets with tooth brushes and how to one puts on a haz mat suit or at the very least a gas mask later in the week.

It is amazing to me that when my manny was hauled out of the state of Missouri by the husband and my stepdad last December he was in quite a state of distress. All due to life mismanagement and one crazy bitch. And yes my former sister in law IS a crazy bitch. Then after life in Jennieland with the darling angel children of mine he started to straighten up, and then got into awesome shape as my mother's yard boy. His personality changed. He seemed happy, less anxious, and was looking forward to something in life. It was being a linguist. So after the six weeks of basic are up that is what he is going to be, a linguist, most likely learning Arabic. (Or after that past couple days events Russian?!)

Dear Manny,

As I said before I am very proud of you. This time you really did pick yourself up dust your self off and set out to do something and are doing it. Will these next six weeks suck, yep, but you'll get through it and will have some nicely pressed tighty whities to show for it. Mom and Dad are proud too, even if, ahem, one of them is nervous. But EVERYONE will be there to see you march and salut and whatever ever else basic training graduation consists of. And then, hold on to your Air Force hat because we are going to Sea World. Which is truly the only reason I am showing up to San Antonio in the first place. I miss you already and so do the kids. We love you.

~Jennie

P.S. If you get to see the Alamo let me know if you find Pee Wee's bike.


The Manny's last meal, I was busy cleaning myself after stuffing my face full of Japanese food and Sushi. 

Monday, August 11, 2008

i give you my love and you hand me a pathetic cucumber

Where do I begin with the garden? I felt so smug this spring. Planting everything in neat little rows. Discussing gardening with my friends (like I was some sort of gardener who knew what she was doing).  But alas, I have produced one damn cucumber. It is small too and curved. Granted there are some phallic looking green parts on the plant but they have been there for weeks now. Doing nothing. I almost forgot the three garlic bulbs. They turned out ok.  The squash plant is taking over and has yet to produce anything that looks like a squash. It has a month and a half before prime squash eating time begins and so far it is just a large leafy plant. I have 3 small orange tomatoes. I don't remember buying a cherry tomato plant, but that is what they look like. Granted I have never had luck with tomatoes. I even sacrificed the chard and gave it to the bugs to keep the rest of the garden happy.  

Two years ago we had so much food it was simply insane. Cukes everywhere. Lots of squash, beans, carrots, even some red and proper sized tomatoes. I honestly can't figure out what the difference is. Same plant food, same watering schedule, same dirt. The weather was cooler in June followed by sweltering heat for 3 weeks. But COME ON GARDEN, give me a break, I just am not feeling the love with the lettuce trees that you have produced. 



Friday, August 8, 2008

nothing much

Nacho Libre and her sidekick Don Quixote. (and mine the yellow Dyson) 

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Linguine With Lemon, Garlic, and Thyme Mushrooms

I am an NPR junkie. Truly. The husband and I used to be "subscribers" in Vegas. But now we just cheat and listen religiously for free. I start my day by making breakfast for the kids and listening to NPR. (On KUNC) Then I listen while cooking dinner. I just love it. I know people say there is a liberal bent to it. The husband likes to bring this up. After almost five years in a very large corporation I have seen tid bits of conservatism come out of his mouth. Then I tell his such nonsense is not allowed in the house and make his wash out his mouth with soap. But since I am a liberal, I personally find NPR to be rather balanced. What I really love about it is how in depth they are with the stories, and the variety. Such as Monday while driving in the the mama mobile to speech I was listening and heard Nigella Lawson, who is a British food author. She was describing some of her favorite summer recipes. She has an incredibly thick accent and did not look at all like she sounds when I went to the website. One recipe that seemed easy (since I have read a couple of easy summer recipe posts lately) and yummy was Linguine With Lemon, Garlic, and Thyme Mushrooms. I made it yesterday evening and it WAS easy and very good. Surprisingly the kids even ate it.

Ingredients

8 oz/4 cups finely sliced cremini mushrooms *I threw in some portobellos too
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt or 1 ½ teaspoons table salt
small clove garlic, minced
zest and juice of a lemon
4 sprigs fresh thyme, stripped to give 1 teaspoon leaves
1 lb linguine
1 bunch parsley, chopped to give ½ cup
2 – 3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese, or to taste
freshly ground pepper

Instructions

"Slice the mushrooms finely, and put them into a large bowl with the oil, salt, minced garlic, lemon juice and zest, and gorgeously scented thyme leaves.

Cook the pasta according to the package instructions and drain loosely, retaining some water. Quickly put the pasta into the bowl with the mushroom mixture.

Toss everything together well, and then add the parsley, cheese, and pepper before tossing again, and eat with joy in your heart."

Some changes I made were the extra portobellos. We didn't have linguini so I used spaghetti. I don't really like thyme so instead I tossed in some mixed dry Italian herbs, that I have in grinder together. Fresh would have been better, but this tasted so good and it was quite easy. But I did use garlic from our garden.


The husband and I had a salad with it. We trying to incorporate more meatless dishes into our dinner-time repertoire and this one I would certainly make again.

Here is the NPR link to the recipe.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

a little about me

I am starting to come out of my cocoon, see look, I am blogging two days in a row. Unfortunately during my three month slumber I got out of the blog scene and it was a good week if I managed to read two blogs, but I just couldn't manage to comment. (I became a lurker) I know pathetic. But this week is different. I am blogging and commenting and checking up on all kinds of blogs. While ignoring the kids during breakfast I was catching up on Never a Dull Moment and noticed she had tagged me. sniffle. So here is the 6 Quirky, Boring, And Unremarkable Things About Me Meme!

1. Currently I love Boulder Chips in the Salt and Vinegar Variety more than anything else in the entire world. I polished off a bag after bringing it home...in twenty minutes. (hey, the kids helped.)

2. I am a secret germ-a-phobe. I try to maintain coolness, but am deathly afraid of cooties. (especially in the month of February)

3. The cat box needs to be changed and I am at nag level orange with the husband to change it. He hasn't seen red in a few days, I will kick it up a notch tonight!

4. I am claustrophobic. really bad. I am also afraid of fish and birds. But not snakes or spiders. Or heights.

5. I am avoiding the library because I apparently lost the teachers edition to some follow along reading CD I brought home for the boy. They keep calling and I can't find it. I miss the library.

6. I need coffee and being pregnant and not drinking it is HORRIBLE!!!!


I am tagging Eat Play Love and The Clothesline.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

on the importance of wearing a helmet and leathers


After dropping the brood off with the grandparents and checking to see if the fetus still had a heart beat, the husband and I bolted from domesticity into the wilds of Colorado. (The husband had picked up groceries at Vitamin Cottage so I was dreaming of gourmet camping food. And salivating over my new Sigg water bottle he had bought to make sure I stayed hydrated.) But then...while going over Monarch Pass (which happens to be a two lane road, very curvy, and without guardrails) we saw two motorcycles go down right in front of us. We just just barely crested the peak and had just started the descent when a plume of dust rose up and we saw bikes rolling. The husband pulled over and I was in disbelief that I had cell service and called 911. We ran down to see what was happening. There were two riders on one bike and one on the other. The bike with the two riders had really gone out of control and both people, a male and female, were pretty banged up. The other rider had simply laid his bike down to avoid the other, and wasn't very injured.

The husband ran back up to car to get the first aid kit, it is of the German variety, since it is required to have one in the trunk at all times there and we never really have had to use it. It has quite a lot of stuff in it all interesting and with directions in German, we proceeded to pour water over the road rash to get the rocks off the raw skin, and then dab up the open wounds with something similar to gauze but thicker. Now, I know enough that touching blood is a definite no no and was EXTREMELY careful not to touch anything with my bare hands. But I made a mental note that rubber gloves are a MUST for the kit, as well as some numbing spray. We found out one of the other motorist that stopped was an ER nurse, so we pretty much let her take over. We stayed with the people talking to them while we waited for the ambulance, which took at least a half hour. The man was quite disoriented and must have had a pretty good concussion, while the woman wasn't moving a whole lot and had a large bruise over her liver, the EMTs were most concerned about her and transported her first. Neither driver, nor the passenger was wearing a helmet. No one was wearing a leather jacket either, or gloves with fingers which would have saved them a lot of a road rash. In fact the woman lost her shoes and has ripped open her sock so they obviously weren't as safe as they could have been. That being said we had followed them for a while and they hadn't been driving fast or erratically. THINGS JUST HAPPEN.

Accidents can happen at anytime, it is my belief that you take the precautions necessary. I always wear a bike helmet, while riding just a plain old bike through the neighborhood, and certainly make both kids wear them, even in the Burley. About eight years ago I broke both elbows and my wrist while mountain biking, although I wasn't on a mountain, we were in the Black Forest and were done for the day and were back in town, I stopped suddenly to avoid hitting the cyclist in front of me and went right over the handle bars. I didn't hit my head but was only going about 12 mph at the time and still managed to to break three bones. I was glad I had my helmet on, even if I hadn't hit it. A couple years later, the husband was commuting to work in Vegas on his bike and was "bumped" by a semi, which sent him flying, crunching his helmet, most contents of his backpack, his bike went under the semi, and he need surgery to repair the damage done to his shoulder. We saved the crunched bike as a reminder. We were very glad he had on his helmet, because it was crunched.

Life is short, even if you are blessed to have a long one. My family enjoys life, we love being outdoors, riding bikes (once across Iowa) camping, hiking, skiing, and the husband would love a motorcycle. I won't stop doing anything I love, and perhaps the husband could even have another motorcycle again. (he had one pre-jennie times), but I WILL make my mini adventures with my family as safe as I can. So turn off the tv, live life and have fun, but for pete sake, wear a helmet, don't free climb, have an avalanche beacon while in the back country, put on some leathers, carry extra water (and some rubber gloves). Love life, don't squander it on stupidity.

After we left the accident we headed to the Black Canyon and had such a wonderful time. We ate the gourmet food, hiked, camped, saw lots of fawns, but didn't shower.