Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Gloria in a nudist colony

So, I don't wanna do laundry anymore. It never ends, and that's depressing. I mean, I like the dumping in the washer part just fine, and the soap part, but then I'm way over it and I just want to sit around and bemoan Lady Mary and Matthew for a while. Maybe Pinterest something. I don't wanna sort underpants.

So, I thought we could join a nudist colony. It seems the only logical thing to do, and also very green, which is very hipster of me considering I don't even recycle. But I care deeply about the planet, goshdarnit!

But, the thing is, I don't want to join a Fit nudist colony, it'd have to be Frumpy nudist colony. Maybe a nudist colony/fat camp? Do they have those? If not, they should. It'd be motivating for the members, although it'd backfire on me. They'd all be out doing deep knee bends and squats and I'd be eating cheese. Pretty soon, it'd be a Fat Camp for one and that's hardly a camp, people.

On the other hand I don't know what Gloria, my muffin top, would do if I gave her room to breathe, and frankly, the idea is a little terrifying. I can keep her under control with some flat tab Yoga pants, or some jeans in a size that some mature adults would call, too small, or some high waist-ed granny panties. If I gave her room to, you know, maneuver, she might spread or something, like Jabba the Hut. She could ooze into things, like small children and puppies, and also, she hasn't quite forgiven me for the Waxing Incident of Which I Do Not Speak (just write about), and she may get revenge yet.

Also, this would be a family affair and Gianni especially, should not be encouraged to flaunt his birthday suit. He already speaks of body parts with disturbing nonchalance, usually at the most inopportune times. Like when conversing with pastors ("did you know weenies can grow?!") or swinging at the park (while shouting, "underdogs make my weenie tickle!")

My other idea, if the whole nudist colony doesn't pan out (or if they reject our application for membership), is disposable clothing. I came up with this idea when I had babies and they were constantly pooping out their onesies and making yellow stains all over creation. Pop-up onesies that come in a tissue box!

How do I get on Shark Tank?

Another application? Really? Forget it.

Or I could just finish the laundry and threaten to cut the next person who casually flips their socks into my empty hamper. I am always harping on everyone about how you never need to wash jeans. Okay, not NEVER never, but MOSTLY never. I can go weeks without washing my jeans, but I confess it's not just because I fret about the planet, it's because I hate that dance you have to do to get back inside them after washing.
You know the one:

shimmy, shimmy, shake, pour, groan, kick, stretch, gasp, cry, ooze, shimmy, nap, suffocate, whimper, pep talk Gloria. 

This is why homeschool moms wear denim jumpers. No, not because they're fashion challenged, but because they don't the time for such nonsense; they're too busy blogging homeschooling. Also, they're too busy writing letters to the Homeschool Association about rejecting my membership. I think they feel threatened by Gloria or something.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


Happy 5th birthday, little man. You're my favorite sidekick, my best cuddler, my personal food critic, my defender, my stunt man.

I say this as though he reads my blog. I'd explain my reasonings, but I have to go put Happy Birthday, Gianni, on my Facebook wall, as though he has Facebook. 

I will leave you with funny pictures. Cuz he's a funny boy. And we have had no weird doctor visits this whole year! I mean, we've had normal ones, but no embedded Q-tips in body parts, no allergic reactions, no flesh eating bacterias, no stitches! I'd say 2012 was a good year for the G-Man. 

Aw! He's so much cuter than a bowling ball! That 24 hr labor was worth it!

I'm sorry, what? My parents are who?

Totally found it like this.

Only room for one cute kid. Take her back to Walmart, mom.

Again! Get lost, sister!

Bringing sexy back. Look at those abs!

I said, milk! Bring me milk! And maybe some pretzels!

Do these glasses make me look fat?

Time to escape this fully clothed society...

How YOU doin?

Uh. Yeah. I have no witty caption for this one.

He's handsome from every angle!

Again with the nudity. I apologize.

I miss his curls.


Happy birthday.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Marshmallow Madness

I've gotten a little weird about marshmallows lately.

I think I need to open a shop or something. I'm coming up with all sorts of wild and crazy flavors. I didn't even know I liked marshmallows, not really. I mean, a S'mores now and then is tasty enough, but mostly I like the roasting part, and then I feed it to a ravenous wolf child. I remember making homemade ones once as a wolf child, and although they were good, they were super sticky and more like marshmallow fluff. 

So, I'm going to share with you the basic recipe, because I love ya, and it's really a sort of sacrifice on my part, because now you'll know how easy they are and you won't be impressed with me any longer.

Now, a basic marshmallow recipe is more or less the same wherever you go on the web, and so please forgive me if I don't site the original source, because who the dickens knows who the original source is anymore? But to be totally fair, this particular recipe came from the bakers at Baking Bites. So, stop by and say hello!

Also, I still don't own a camera (someday, some rich blog reader is gonna feel sorry for me and mail me one anonymously. I just know it.) so you'll have to use your imagination in parts, and bear with my google pictures. 

So, here goes, moppets:

Homemade Marshmallows

                       .75-oz unflavored gelatin (3 envelopes of Knox gelatin)
1/2 cup cold water
2 cups granulated sugar
2/3 cups light corn syrup
1/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Line 9 x 9-inch pan with plastic wrap and lightly oil it. Set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, sprinkle gelatin over 1/2 cup cold water. Soak for about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine sugar, corn syrup and 1/4 cup water in a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a rapid boil and boil hard for 1 minute.
Pour the boiling syrup into soaked gelatin and turn on the mixer, using the whisk attachment, to high speed. Add the salt and beat for 12 minutes. After 12 minutes, add in the vanilla extract beat to incorporate. Here's where you have fun adding in your wild mix-ins.
Scrape marshmallow into the prepared pan and spread evenly (Lightly greasing your hands and the spatula helps a lot here). Take another piece of lightly oiled plastic wrap and press lightly on top of the marshmallow, creating a seal. Let mixture sit for a few hours, or overnight, until cooled and firmly set.
In a shallow dish, combine equal parts cornstarch and confectioners’ sugar. Remove marshmallow from pan and cut into equal pieces with scissors (the best tool for the job) or a chef’s knife. Dredge each piece of marshmallow in confectioners’ sugar mixture.
Store in an airtight container.

Now, a few notes on the original recipe: the mixture in your mixer is going to become very nearly, wet cement. HAVE YOUR GREASED SPATULA AND GREASED HANDS READY. I'm not kidding. The first time I did not, and well, I nearly glued myself to the counter, the whisk, the television, the computer, and the dog. My hair was glued to my cheek, my hand was glued to my nose, and I nearly burst a gut laughing at myself. So, be prepared. Don't say I didn't warn you. 

Mix-ins I have tried thus far:

candied ginger (I snipped tiny pieces and laid them in the bottom of the dish, added in the marshmallow, and snipped some more on top. Pressed em in a bit and voila!) and powdered ginger.  DELICIOUS! And sophisticated. I mean nothing says sophisticated like Ginger Marshmallows, am I right? You know I am.

Peppermint. Have a small wolf child crush some peppermint sticks or candy canes in a ziplock bag with a heavy pan or rolling pin. He will enjoy this immensely and you will have smooshed-to-smithereens peppermints. Stir in (and when I say stir, I use the term loosely. Remember you are working with wet cement). Add a swirl of red food coloring.

This is Peppermint Patty, not a peppermint stick. Don't crush her in a ziplock, please.

Snickerdoodle. Dump in a BUNCH of cinnamon and up the vanilla. I'm not kidding you - these are out of this world. 

Other flavors I'm itching to try:

Lavender. Add in some lavender and some purple food coloring? I don't typically like lavender in my food, but I think this would be nice.
Salted caramel.  These are definitely next on my list.
Browned butter and sage.
Mocha or coffee.
Brown sugar.
Lemon (with zest! Mmmm. I love lemon zest!)
Chai tea.

Got some crazy flavors for me? Wanna be my partner in my marshmallow making business? 

Monday, October 15, 2012

A Story in Text Speak

My sister and I text a lot. It's imperative because we have ninety-six children between us, so if you do the math, you'll realize that if we want to actually have a conversation, with our vocal cords, we'll have to wait until summer of 2032. 

If ever we die, and people try to recreate our last days using our text messages, no one would make sense of anything, and it would look like we were chubby, alcoholic, hungry, television addicts. Which, we may in fact, be, but there's more to us, darnit! 

Just nothing worth texting about.

For instance, sometimes we'll get a flashback and be reminded of something in our shared childhood. Last night, it was Newsies.

Remember Newsies?

I was watching it last night with Roo, having serious flashbacks to 1992 and my love affair with Christian Bale's hair, who wasn't anybody at the time (him or his hair). 

I'm not kidding. I loved his hair. That floppy boy look. Did it for me every time. 

Hat boy was a cutie patootie, too. So was the Brooklyn blonde boy, also with floppy hair.

Actually, this whole movie was a dream for a 14 year old homeschooled, nerd girl. The entire cast was dreamy boys, with dance moves, brooding eyes, and floppy hair. 

Our text conversation went something like:

Me: I'm watching Newsies! Squeal!

Her: I'm the king of New York!

Me: Didja know the kid who was also in Doogie, who always plays the Brooklyn Italian kid in every movie of that decade, is actually Russian? The things you learn with imdb. (Note: I can no longer watch any movie without looking up the cast on imdb)

Max Casella. Not Italian.

Her: I know, right??

Me: Also, Christian Bale has been happily married to you for years! It's crazy the trivia you can learn.

Her: It's true! We're just so happy together!

Me: I could tell from the red carpet photos. Did I tell you this is back on Broadway?

Her: I'll pack immediately. 

Me: Wait! Is Broadway a real street? So, I like, what, go to 4th and Broadway, or something?

Her: Yes, it's a street, dummy. I puked on it when I was preggers with Aly. I think it sees a lot of puke though, so I fit in.

Me: Wait again. Why is Bill Pullman's character suddenly better looking than Jack Kelly?

Her: Probably because you're not 14 anymore. You could be Christian Bale's mother's character by now.

Me: That was harsh. Also, I refuse to accept your math, homeschooler. Am so only 14. 

Her: I'm the king of New York!

Me: I love Bill Pullman. I've been happily married to him for years.

The End.

I could probably do a whole series based on text messages.

My sister and I are kind of a fount of knowledge when it comes to movie trivia. We're really our own special kind of imdb. Feel free to text us at any time with your movie and television emergencies. We may answer with things like, I really am ruggedly handsome, aren't I? or Bless your beautiful hide! or Come out to the coast...we'll have a few laughs!  but if you're a true fan of quotes, this won't bother you in the slightest.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Grandpa's Least Favorite Song

In the spirit of Halloween, I bring you the song that made my sweet Grandpa go berserk. Thus, we sang it as much as possible.

Do Ever Wonder?

Do you ever wonder when the hearse goes by
That you may be the next to die?

They wrap you in a big, white sheet
And then they bury you 6 feet deep.

All goes well for the first few weeks
But then the coffin begins to leak.

The worms crawl in
The worms crawl out
The ants play Pinochle on your snout.

They eat the jam between your toes
And that's the way the story goes!

Happy October, ghouls and boys! Teach this old song to your kiddos - they'll totally thank you.

And since my Grandpa is probably scowling at me from above (I just realized this song may be the reason he asked to be cremated) here are a couple more. These ones he actually taught me, and they aren't disgusting.

After The Ball

After the ball was over
(insert name here) took out her glass eye...
Put her false teeth in fresh water...
Stopped up her bottle of dye.
Stood her peg leg in the corner...
Hung her false wig on the wall.

Then all that was left went to dreamland...
After the ball.



Was her name!

She had ten hairs on the top of her head
5 were alive, and 5 were dead!
Was her name!

She had two teeth in the front of her mouth
1 pointed north and the other pointed south!
(Chorus. Please don't make me type it all again. See above).

She had two eyes on the front of her head
1 was glass and the other was lead!

She had two ears on the side of her head
1 was yeller and the other was dead!

She slept in the kitchen
With her feet in the hall
That's because she's nine feet tall!

What are your favorite kid songs and who taught them to you? Do you know these classics, or have a different version?

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

curly girl

A year or so back, you'll remember, I did the No 'Poo thing. I made it about 6 weeks, then I succumbed to the temptations of the hair aisle at Rite-Aid once again, and went on a binge of sweet smelling shampoos. I seriously fell off the wagon, hard. I was hiding Cucumber and Melon Smoothing Shampoos in the back of the toilet, and Gardenia Frou-Frou Delight Conditioner under the bed. Everyone pretended not to notice how jumpy I was, and chalked my shaky hands and twitchy eyes up to withdrawal symptoms.

Anyway, my pal, Tawni, is trying the Curly Girl method with her hair, so I said I'd jump on the band wagon with her, because after all, what are friends for, if not for jumping onto beauty band wagons? But because I have absolutely no will power at all, and change my mind frequently, and will be tortured by visions of flat ironed locks even in my sleep, I am writing this down so you all can keep us accountable.

Also, she doesn't blog.
And I don't have a camera.
So, if you were hoping for before and after glamour shots, you'll have to visit us both in person. It'd be cool, wouldn't it, to document, but hey, here are basic, sort of Before Shots:

This is Me

This is Tawni

As you can see, we are prone to frizz, and Raman noodle type curls.

Both of us have very similar hair, and both of us experienced weirdness of the follicle kind after giving birth. She just had a wee babe, a daughter I like to call Melyssa, but they don't. So, post partum, her hair weirdness is really kicking in. I just had a wee babe recently sorta 5 years ago, but I'm still adjusting to my particular weirdness.

As are all of you.

I blame celebrities, by the way, for why us curly haired girls hate our hair. We have ironed the heck out of it in our misguided attempts to look like Gwyneth Paltrow, and instead we end up with huge biceps from the blow dryer, and frizzed out, dried out, haystacks for hair. Sometimes I touch my hair and remember we're out of Shredded Wheat.

So, basically the Curly Girl Method is something along the lines of this:

1.  DON'T shampoo. Use conditioner instead (yep, even on your scalp).  If you get too greasy after a while, you can wash with baking soda, but from everything I've read, you'll be surprised.

2.  Use lots of conditioner. Of course, botanical, all natural, no sulfate is best. Here's what I got, because it said No Sulfates and No Silicones right on the bottle, and also because it was under $4 for a giant bottle:

3. Use No Silicone gel. Or get wild and crazy like Tawni, and don't use any products at all. I'm not ready to be so wild and crazy yet. So, I bought this:

As far as styling goes, I guess you do what floats your boat. Blow dry, or don't, just try not to touch your curls as much as possible. This is key. Don't EVER brush curly hair, people. All of us with curly hair already knows this basic fact, but just in case... Comb through gently when hair is super wet, and that's it.

Well, we'll see. In just a few weeks, I expect our After shots to look a little something like these

This is Me

This is Tawni

My hubby should be thrilled because every time I straighten my hair, he sighs and says, you just ruined a perfectly good hairstyle. 
My students will not be thrilled, because every time I leave my hair curly, they squint up at me and say, what happened to your hair? Did you forget to brush it today?

Also, I'm not super thrilled with curly hair the length my hair happens to be at the moment, and will be for at least a year beyond now, because my hair grows at the Speed of Snail. It's not short, but it's not long, so basically what I get, if I'm not super careful and if I don't flat iron (like I want to already...awk! help! I'm falling off the wagon again! I wanna be Gwyneth!) it can look like a fuzzy pyramid.

Well, I'm off now. Off to NOT shampoo and NOT flat iron. For at least a couple weeks. Then I fully expect to give up and give in to the desire to run my fingers through my hair again, instead of getting them lodged halfway in a mass of tangles.

Who's with me, girls? (We all know your hair ain't that straight naturally).
Join us? (I'll even let you be Catherine Zeta Jones on my blog).