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January 2010
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March 2010

Lying around

My poor kid is sick now, too.  This particular germ fest involves a lot of intense headaches and not much else. The type of headaches that get so bad you kind of feel like throwing up.  But whereas I, as an adult with mucho headachy experience and being a mom, am used to ignoring pain, or at least throwing up and returning to work with only a gleam of chin dribble, my child is not equipped with such survival mechanisms.  He says, "it hurts all over when I move".  Oh baby, I know.

So Chance is now camped out on my bed, surrounded by DS cartridges, cheerios, and toys while watching cartoons, and while this scenario may seem familiar to most of you parents out there, to me IT IS NOT!  Because unlike most children, my child when sick is only marginally less active than he usually is... which means a little less bouncing, but just as much running around.  However, this time he is making a concentrated effort to move as little as possible thereby lessening the head pounding.

Which means... which means... I actually get to lay around in bed... while I'm sick!!  Wow.

I've heard these idyllic stories of cuddling in bed with your child.  Maybe I'll read a book today.  Of course, Chance always has his own interesting ideas.

"Mom, let's play a game. A game about lying!  Tell me a really good one."

Chance has been fascinated with the concepts of truth and falsehoods, lately.

"Kiddo, lies are not games."

"Yeah, but what types of lies would grownups tell?"  Apparently he feels satisfied with his knowledge of child-level lies.

"No. I said lies are not games," (Unless you're a writer), "Besides I think you already know what the truth and a lie are."

"What about bad guys in Europe?"

"What?  Um..." head pounding, "Let's read some Harry Potter."

                    - wg

stop boring us

I have been in firm and righteous denial for the past few days but... I think I'm getting sick.  Or maybe I'm already sick.  Denial is so damn dark it's hard to tell.  (Like a really smoky club when you're a bit buzzed and you wander into the bathroom but it turns out not to be the bathroom but you've already... um... nevermind.)

Anyway, I hate posting/whining I'm sick.  It is winter.  Duh.  And it's all so terribly banal.  (That's a fancy word I learned on Sesame Street. They were starting with the "buh" sound followed by the rest of the word.  It didn't end well.)  After blogging for 4 1/2 years now I kind of feel like I've done the sick blog thing.  I mean, that's so last flu season.  

Oh!  So I decided to buy a new razor (yeah, I'm talking about razors now) because I've been a disposable girl for years and those have worked fine, but I don't like the idea of filling up the landfills any more than necessary.  So I check out all the fancy-schmancy razors (but not the chick ones 'cause they're all pink and  shaped weird and seem to be surrounded by vulva. I don't care how moisturizing it may be I'm not shaving with vulva on a stick) and I pick one with the name Mach in it.  Like a jet!  And how did I not know that the science behind razors had come so far? because, sure enough, this sucker glides across my legs sleek and fast and with nary a nick!  It put those disposables to shame.  I was so impressed I started making this "br-br-br-br-rrrr" sound as it's flying along, but then I realized I sounded more like a car.  So I stopped.  Because making car sounds while shaving would be ridiculous.

OK, I just re-read all that and I think my brain is broken.

              - wg

Who knew cause and effect was genetic?

So essentially, I'm a smartass.  (Shocker, right?)  A smartass and a storyteller.  I have probably been these things since I learned to talk, spinning some facetious yarn about how binkies are actually the detached udders of cows.  I also have three brothers.   Therefore, as with many children in large families, I grew up feeding those brothers lines of crap and seeing how much they’d buy.   What?  It’s fun!  A healthy family activity.   

However, call it fate or karma or what have you, I am now saddled with a child who puts an awful lot of emphasis on personal empirical knowledge.  For example, the lovely Motherbumper one time told a story about her child playing with a ratchet gun (without a bit) and Motherbumper told said child that if she unscrewed her belly button her butt would fall off.

This is exactly the type of thing I would have reveled in telling my brothers!

But, for a long time, I couldn't (and maybe still can't) say anything like that to Chance... because he would try to unscrew his belly button.  Just to see if his butt would fall off.  See, he seems to have the unfortunate combination of intense curiosity and a certain lack of self-preservation.  When he was younger I often caught him trying to touch the thing that I just told him was hot.  If I explained the cause and effect of hitting the wrong end of his spoon, next thing I knew he'd be flinging food in the air.  He had to test everything.  By the time he was ready for warnings about electric outlets I knew to intentionally leave out any mention of forks.

I couldn’t figure out where this... I don't even know what to call it... scientific spirit? foolhardiness? ...came from.  Regardless of the fact that my brothers and I told each other great big whoppers we knew better than to try them out.  I mean, what if one of those stories were actually true?  When my older brother would stick his tongue on a battery and pretend to be electrocuted... did I ever test that?  HELL no!  Did my youngest brother really think that if he didn't wear his underwear his penis would fall off and he'd become a girl?  I don't know, but I do know he started wearing underwear again. 

Anyway, you can see my dilemma... with Chance's million questions (and trust me, he has a LOT of questions) sometimes a smartass story is just burning to get out.  But I can't!  Given his nature I just need to suppress my facetious instincts until (hopefully) he grows out of testing everything.  Which I hope is soon.  I still can't figure out where this came from; I mean, in my family, I admit, we're all a little detrimentally creative at times but we're still healthily self-protective about bodily harm.

So one day I'm discussing (complaining about) this aspect of Chance with my mom and she says, "Yeah, I was like that.  I'd scratch myself because I thought blood was interesting."

*blink blink blink*

Thanks Mom!     

                     - the weirdgirl

ding ding ding!

Another update in our diet blog by proxy - Keen has reached 199.5 lbs!  He is quite psyched (and I'm quite proud).  He's been waiting to break the 200 pound mark.  He started his diet, according to the doctor's scale, at 247! 

So he's agreed to share some of his recipes and techniques (which I've frantically typed as he dictated).  One of the things he swears by is upping your fiber.  This was a big lifestyle change for him because Keen wasn't eating high fiber foods previously.  I've always been a fan of oatmeal and cereal but he wasn't.  Now that he's switched over he says that, as well as being good for you, the fact that fiber makes you feel fuller longer just helps with the diet.  Keen's been getting about 60% of his fiber in the mornings alone.  He eats high fiber/multi-grain oatmeal with high fiber yogurt, and has a fiber supplement to boot, starting the day off with a majority of his daily percentage.

Keen also has added in a lot of vegetables.  One way that we really enjoy them (where they're so flavorful you don't get sick of eating a lot of the same thing) is roasted.  He made a scrumptious zucchini and tomato mix for dinner Monday night that came out so good.  It is also super easy to make.  Here's the recipe.

Roasted Tomatoes and Zucchini

1 pound of zucchini

1 pound of cherry tomatoes (leave whole)

olive oil spray

salt & pepper

garlic powder

Cut the ends off the zucchini, slice down the middle lengthwise, and cut into half inch pieces.  Lay them out on a baking pan along with the tomatoes, and be sure to leave the tomatoes whole. Spray all the veggies with olive oil spray.  Add salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste. 

Bake at 425 degrees for 20-25 minutes

Another dish he made that will definitely make a repeat performance is this one.

Veal with Artichoke and Mushrooms with Couscous

1 pound of ground veal

a 14 ounce can of artichoke hearts

3/4 pounds of sliced mushrooms (crimini or white buttons)

olive oil spray

salt & pepper

Prep:  Before beginning, slice the mushrooms.  Open and drain the can of artichoke hearts and cut the hearts into quarters. Set aside.

Spray a large non-stick frying pan with olive oil spray, add mushrooms and cook over medium heat for 3 - 4 minutes.  Add ground veal and brown with mushrooms until almost cooked (3 - 4 more minutes).  Add the quartered artichoke hearts and cook for another 3- 4 minutes until is cooked (or heated) through.  Add salt and pepper to taste. 

Prepare plain or parmigian couscous on the side.  You can serve the veal and vegetables mixed in with the couscous (which is how I like it) or on the side. 

Have I mentioned yet that he can come up with this shit on the fly?  And they look so easy once he explains them!  This just goes to prove my point... some people have got mad cooking skills, and some of us HAVE NOT!  (In fact, some of us should never be allowed to cook food. hint)

Hope you enjoy these.  I'll keep posting new ones as they come up.

                - the weirdgirl

It's not you, it's me (no really, it's you... I hope)

Remember back in the day when my dryer smelled like poo?  (Which is a completely different incident from when I turned the dryer purple.)  Well, thanks to you lovely internets I managed to get the dryer not to smell like shit.  However, we had lugged around that washer/dryer set through a few years and households and it was pretty much on its last legs.  We managed to make do with it a while longer, the nugget scent came back once or twice to visit (what a dear), and the actual drying became less and less... dry... until we gave up and bought a new set.

A shiny, sexy new set!  In RED!  Be still my fricking heart.

So we've had our new set for just about a year (which I figure puts the dryer at the mentality of a seven-year-old (you know, dryer and dog years being somewhat equivalent)) and guess fucking what?!

There is... oh how do I describe it?  The wafting essence of hot-brewed piss, fruity and full-bodied, vigorously imbuing the air (and my clothes) with its not-so-delicate aroma.

For the record, every single one of us in this household wash.  We are all completely potty-trained.  There are no secret fetishes.

I can't figure out if the appliances just have it in for us (like maybe I kicked one while it was young and word has gotten around?) or...

...we're actually a completely putrescent family AND NO ONE HAS TOLD US!!

(Maybe that's the real reason that damn playgroup would never come to my house.)


           - the weirdgirl

It's here again already?

I think I'm going to assign future Mondays as... Lobotomy Monday!  You know, it'd be like Wordless Wednesdays but with scalpels and scrambling for organization instead of pictures.  OK, there still may be pictures.  Anywho, Mondays are my organizing day and in general, (your disclaimer here) I tend to be really efficient!  (Stop laughing.)  I get everything scheduled for the week, plus a whole lot of items done. (Really!)

And then I don't know what happens but somewhere around Wednesday the week takes off on it's own.  Kind of impertinent if you ask me.  

Me and Keen took off over the weekend for a night alone. We hit a spa and had a nice dinner, which was a big treat for Keen, being on a diet and all.  It was really nice... until I called home Sunday morning to hear my little boy's broken sobs.  It turns out waking up in the morning without his parents around was a bit of a stresser for him!  Which, of course, turned into a stresser for me.  Oh, the anxious mom heartbreak!  I had to rush on out of there back home.  I guess I'm less of a toughie than I think I am.

Except for when it's time to be in charge.

Say it.

Calvin and hobbes lobotomy

20 years later

Luckily, our first date did not go like this (of course, Keen and I started dating before laptops were around but details, people, details!  Quit reminding me I'm old!).  I also might have been the one wearing the bow tie but you know, that transition between the 80s and grunge was all very confusing.  I take little to no responsibility for any acid wash or oversized menswear I may have been wearing.  Besides, Keen had a fondness for dayglo Ray Bans. 

Didn't you know the test of true love is weathering the fashion faux pas?

Scan0002 cropped

Happy first date anniversary, babe!  Love you.

              - wg


I don't know what happened last week but it is gone, baby. Gone. An entire week... missing.  And I can think of only a couple of significant things that I'm going to remember.

Oh well. That's why I write shit down on a calendar.

(An old-fashioned calendar. Made with PAPER! gasp)

(Obviously, my caffeine is kicking in.)

So as I implied earlier my dear husband Keen has been a busy boy lately.  He had a doctor's visit this year that was a little scary and a wake up call for him.  But you know how guys totally slack about going for a checkup in the first place and then after they go they're all dedicated?  Keen's right there.  He's made some serious lifestyle changes to be more healthy.  And they've paid off because starting from the Monday after Thanksgiving to today... he's lost 37 pounds!

I am really, really proud of him.

Keen's a big guy and always has been; the type of guy who has a barrel chest and a square build.  When we first met Keen was doing a lot of sports and had a physically active job in a grocery store (he taught me how to mop).  We dated all through college and then we both graduated and Keen went on to become a CPA.  So he went from an active lifestyle to a busy desk job.  Over the years that starts to have an effect. 

So how has he done it?  First and foremost, he changed his diet.  He added in a lot of high fiber, and way more vegetables.  He's cut out salt, reduced and changed the types of carbs he eats, and reduced his red meat, while eating a lot more lean meats like turkey.  He's kept his calorie intake to 1200 a day.  It helps that he loves to cook so he's experimented with keeping flavor in while staying healthy.  Just last night he made a dish with lean pork, artichoke hearts, mushrooms, and couscous that was delish!  

And he's been exercising every day. He started with walking a couple miles around the neighborhood, then 3-4.  Then working out on an elliptical trainer. Now he's up to an hour on the elliptical at a time.

For his next step, Keen's shooting for more weight loss but he also wants to start building and toning up muscles, so I think some of that will even out.  It becomes reshaping the body instead of just dropping weight.

He says he feels better than he has in years.  We're celebrating our 20th anniversary this week and in that time he's been bigger and he's been smaller.  He was probably at his heaviest when we got married.  I'm going to love him no matter what size or shape he's in.  But I have to say, seeing him happy, seeing him take charge of his health so that he's here for our family in the long run... it's super sexy.  

                 - the weirdgirl