Friday, October 31, 2008

Open House

Last night, we attended the Open House at school. It actually was held so that parents and grandparents had to attend a book fair, but that is cool since the chirrens here have decided that reading is indeed, FUN-damental.

Here the dancing clown takes advantage of some open floor to demonstrate her moves. We were still in dance gear because we had just left dance lessons when we went to school. The girl has a tight schedule these days. Call her for an appointment if you want an audience with her so she can get you in her planner. It really is almost that bad.

We are really lucky that these guys get along so well. For the most part, they are the best of playmates, although that can backfire when they get in "cahoots" about something.

Papa dropped in for the open house. I was so glad that he did, because both teachers bragged on the chitlin's and it makes me proud to hear someone else say such good things about them.

Now, tonight we will have the big fun.............Obi Wan and Coco DeClown are getting fired up for a big night of Trick or Treating. I am not sure if Tutti Frooti is going to come out tonight or not...just depends on how much I can get done between the time I get off and the time we have to start everything.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

New Ride

The little chicas got a new vehicle from ebay this week. This ultra-cool stroller lists for 119.00 on the Foster and Smith Website. I got it for 30.00. I had been wanting one for a long time for Lily so she can go with us on walks, but just never got one until I saw this sweet little bargain.

I found the big Goodwill Store in Southaven today too........bought me two denim jumpers for 4.99 each. One has fall leaf appliques and the other is a Christmas one. I know, limited use, and all that. I don't care though because for that price I can wear it 8 times in it's appropriate month and be cute as can be. I don't see the same people everyday, so it really doesn't matter. I am sure there were other fabulous bargains there, but I didn't have time to really sift through it.

The last of the Fried Green Tomatoes........

......for this year at least. I ran out night before last and picked the rest of the ones that I thought would be big enough to fry and left the rest to freeze. There were quite a few, so hopefully we will actually cook these before they start to turn. These are Marion Heirlooms and they are a pinkish color when they are ripe, which means to me they always look "not quite done." They taste ok, but the full sized tomato is a bit on the smallish side, or at least the ones we grew were.

I do love a Fried Green Tomato with some Lulu's WOW sauce.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

We're Reading!

We have started reading the Harry Potter books every night at bedtime. It is so surprising to me that a boy so resistant to being read to ( at first) is the one begging me to read every night now. Of course, we have to read in as many different voices as I can, and have frequent interruptions for the listeners to expound on " that is not how it was in the movie." I like it when they do that because it proves to me that they are listening to the reading.

The chapters are long, so we get about one chapter a night. Hopefully, we will be able to read them all eventually. I want to read them the "Little House " books too, but Barnes and Noble didn't have any of them when I was there. I remember reading those as a kid and I really loved them. I also have a copy of Black Beauty that I have had ever since I can remember that I may read to them too. I do so hope that once they are able to really read big books by themselves that they will really love reading like I do.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Growing up .....

The little babies are growing up fast. I have to say that we have enjoyed having them, but I for one will be happy when they go to their new homes next week. Dixie and Allie will be getting spayed when the family is gone over the week after Christmas, so these will likely be the last that we will have, at least for several years.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

I can't WAIT for Sunday night!

Generally, Sunday night is the time I am counting down the hours until I have to go back to work on Monday. You know, planning the week ahead, sorting out clothes so the people of this house won't have to go about their week wrinkled, stained, or worse yet, mis-matched. Now, HBO has just given me a reason to enjoy my late night on Sunday with the new series "TruBlood". It is based on the Charlaine Harris novels about Sookie Stackhouse, the telepathic barmaid, and her vamp boyfriend, Bill. It reminds me so much of the early Laurell K. Hamilton books about Anita Blake, the vampire hunter. ( those got too complicated later on, so I stopped reading them) The coolest thing is that the people on the show talk like we do!

The series so far has stuck pretty close to the first book, but they have added a few characters and mixed things up a little. I am reading the second book now, and am into new territory not coved by the series....yet. The series is made by HBO, so keep that in mind when you sit down to watch it with the family. It is definately not for kids. There are some racy moments and a bit of violence, but it is funny too. I just "DVR" it and watch it later.

In my opinion, HBO has redeemed itself for ending the Sopranos and for making us wait for another 6 months for Big Love.

Movie Night

Tonight we moved the couch in to the perfect place in front of the tv, made some popcorn, and watched "Nim's Island". The little people loved the movie, but I think moving the furniture and making our own theater was more exciting for them. For me, it was exciting because I got to sweep under the couch. Yay, hurrah.

This was the view before all the dogs piled on. We are sitting here at this very moment with 3 chihuahuas and 1 Australian shepherd . Kids, dogs, movies and popcorn. Big Big fun on a Saturday night.

Yeah! It's Saturday!

Or more specifically, the LAST Saturday of the month, which is cause for celebration because the clinic is CLOSED and I get to hang out at home with the family all morning. Unfortunately, Australian shepherds operate on a different time schedule that the rest of us and I had to get up at the regular time. I really don't mind though, because it gives me time to sit and drink my coffee ( you don't want to experience me without that) and read or whatever. Today I am drinking coffee with a nest of chihuahuas sitting under the laptop. I think they like it because it is warm.
Today we have just a few things on the docket. First we have to go pack up boxes at Angel Food, then we have to go to Tae Kwan Do, then we need to make a trip to the dreaded Wal-Mart to get some sweats for the chirren. I have been going through their winter clothes and found that they need some new knockarounds. They get so nasty playing at school and at the Y, I just send them there in jeans and sweatshirts. That way, if they get paint or dirt or whatever on their clothes, it is no big loss. I know a lady who makes fancy hair bows, so we'll be dressing up some plainer outfits with those.
I'm still working on the crustless, sugar-free pumpkin stuff for those interested. I made one night before last and it is still not perfect, but it is good enough that I am going to go ahead and eat it instead of tossing it. I will likely be making another one middle of next week with a few changes, so if it turns out, we'll have the final recipe soon.
Later, Swee'taters!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Rainy day and the mystery of eggs

After I got up and took the kids to the bus stop, I came back home and made myself a couple of eggs. Did you ever wonder why scrambled eggs taste so different from boiled, poached, and fried? The ones above are "diet" fried eggs because I just sprayed some pam in the pan and popped them in there. They even smell different. I can hardly smell a scrambled or fried egg at all ( if cooked in bacon fat, then I think I would smell the bacon), but I can really smell boiled eggs. I guess it is just another scientific mystery I'll have to research, or maybe not. I am feeling really lazy tonight because it is raining and cold. I am once again going to climb Mount Washmore and see what I can get done before kid's reading and bedtime.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Sweet Baby Puppies

I am by no means a photographer, but I thought this looked cool how it focused on her face and blurred out the rest. She is so very pretty.

This is this pup's "referral photo". She will be going to live in Columbus in a couple of weeks.

LuLu is the baddest of the bunch. She is a little scrapper and she already barks and mauls the other little girls. Of course, the kids fight over holding her all the time, even though we have a box full of them. Man, they are so cute.
Oh, I am testing a new pet odor candle, so I'll let ya know if it works. So far, it is doing well. The one I have is a mulberry scent, which isn't my favorite. I burned it a while last night and I could still smell it this am when I got up. If they work reasonably well, you all may get some for Christmas!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Report Card Day!!!!!!

It was a most excellent day in our household! Not only did everyone get up in a reasonably good mood, we made it in time for the schoolbus, and both got good behavior marks today, and we got REPORT CARDS! The Precious Porkchop even got an achievement certificate for all A's and B's. He only got one B and it was only 1 point away from an A!!! The little Coconut got all "S" marks, which is the same as getting all A's. Both of their teachers had nice things to say about them and I was just so proud I could bust. We always knew they were both extra smart in addition to being cute beyond belief, but it is nice to know that someone else appreciates their incredible specialness too!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Socialization of Puppies, by CoCoNut

I don't think these puppies will have any problems with socialization, especially with children. The little things just light up when they hear the kids in the room. I had to take down one side of the pen because I was constantly having to get them out and put them back so that the puppy trainers could do their job.

Pretty Pie

I never have been able to crimp the edge of a pie shell. I mess it up every time and end up doing something like this where I just mashed it out flat and then cut it off smooth with a knife.
This one is a sugar-free cherry filling with regular crust. I think it would have looked better if I had been able to sprinkle a little sugar on it. Oh well.....

Oh, the recipe is really simple. One can of sugar-free cherry pie filling and two pie crusts.
Put it together and bake at 350 until the top is browned. I did put a few little bits of butter on top of the filling before I put the top crust on.

Buddy Walk

We met lots of new friends at the Buddy Walk.....including River Thing and Sheldon, who both wanted to take a picture with us. I felt like I was in the Forest of Fairy Tale Creatures ( like in Shrek). There was a huge pig guy running around too, but he disappeared. I'm thinking he fell victim to the barbeque people!

*<:O) Sunday (O:>*

Here are a few of the lovely pumpkins the kids decorated for the pumpkin contest. Do you think they had a little help? Below, Coco D'Clown is refueling with a tootsie roll. She does dearly love a good toosie roll. Or anything else that is chocolate.

Today is starting our one is up except me and the dogs and we have been out, got cold and hurried back inside. Hopefully they will sleep a bit later this morning since we had such a long day yesterday. The children had eaten so much candy and junk that they were really wired until about 9:30, then it got mysteriously quiet in the back of the house and I went to investigate ( that eerie quiet usually means they are into something) and found them both sound asleep. Yeah! No fight to get them to bed. I did have to pick the little one up off the floor and haul her into her own room, but that was fine. She isn't too heavy for me yet.

Later this morning I am meeting some clowns to go to the Down Syndrome Association Buddy Walk. I think it should be a lot of fun, except for the fact it is 46 degrees right now. Hopefully we won't get cold and it won't be too windy. There is going to be a lot of stuff going on, so I will try to get some pictures, but I can't promise anything because those tattoos are time consuming!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Fall Festival

We had a great time at the Fall Festival. There were games, tons of chili and hotdogs, pony rides, a big hayride, face painting, a cupcake walk, and of course, Flutterby made balloons and I did tattoos. We were a little chilly and the wind was blowing stuff around, but we didn't lose our wigs or anything, so it was a great day!

Here we are in the photo-op area. Someone with blue hair didn't really want to be taking pictures. Can you tell?

Coco made a huge haul of candy and prizes. I honestly thing she had the biggest bag of all!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Rainy Thursday

I apologize for no early am picture post today - we slept a little late and it is pouring down rain and the little people didn't want to get wet.....anyway, I had to drive them to the corner and wait in the car for the bus. Now I have to get ready to go to WORK ( I know, it is Thursday) to deal with the backlog of CHARTS that keep piling up on my desk. I fI was rich, I would just hire someone to walk around behind me and write all this stuff down as we do it so I wouldn't have to constantly re-hash it.
On a happier note, I do have to go to the bank, post office, Barnes and Nobel, and the grocery store and then come home and clean up a little before picking the chirrens up to head back to DANCE class. I'm not thinking that a nap is figuring in there anywhere. SA, I am getting a couple of those Sookie books. Get ready , cause I read fast.
Even more happy thoughts- tonight is a NEW CSI and Sara is on it, but I think it is gonna be a downer episode. ER will be sad too because Abby is leaving. I may have to just call in depressed tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Here's one more picture. I have to take up that collar a little so that it doesn't sag. Actually, the whole top needs to be taken up a little because it is baggy . I may just take a big dart in the back and shorten the elastic in the neck.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Birthday Party

Today we went to a birthday party at the assisted living facility near our church. My Sunday school class sponsored it and since we are trying to start the clowning ministry, I figured I'd go in clown drag. Well, when I committed to doing it, I forgot my kids would be out of school. So, Coco the Clown went with me , as did Obiwan Kenobi. (Obiwan decined having his picture taken - must be a jedi thing)

This handsome fella just turned 81. I think he was more interested in the ladies across the table than he was the clowns on his back! That's Sugah Pie in the straw hat. She is just as cute as the bug on her hat!

Miss Mary sure wanted her picture made, but she couldn't take her eyes off of Coco long enough to look at the camera. The baby clown sang "Happy Birthday" four different times and also gave them a dose of Old McDonald and the Alphabet Song, then ended her concert with a very sweet rendition of Jesus Loves Me. The residents LOVED it, and I was really really proud that she did it.

We really enjoyed ourselves, and we hope to be able to go back again sometime soon!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Missions accomplished.

Today I had big plans to get a lot of stuff done on these two days off, and I think I put a BIG dent in it today.

Here's what we did:
1. Cleaned kids rooms
2. Cleaned bird poop off wall and window ( don't say it)
3. Moved pie safe
4. swept and mopped family room and moved furniture around ( again)
5. cleaned up junk on back porch and swept.
6. Moved outdoor table and chairs onto porch
7. Pulled all the grass and weeds up out of the patio ( Coco did most of this)
8. 5 loads of laundry - stripped the beds ( yeah!)
9. went to target for an Obiwan Kenobi outfit.
10. Made spaghetti - from scratch y'all.

Now tomorrow I have to go to a birthday party, but I am gonna try to finish the laundry and get the bathrooms done. I think we can get it all done!

I have lost my laptop

My children have become computer whizzes, so I have pretty much lost my laptop whenever they are awake and not otherwise engaged. Porkchop can read anything he wants to, so he spends time looking at sites about dinosaurs and dragons, as well as gaming on NickJr.

Coconut spends her time playing on the Dora site on NickJr. It is surprising how much she can already read and do on her own. See what I mean about Bob?

Equal time for Poopie

Since Bob gets a lot of exposure here, Poopie thought she deserved a post all her own. Here she is at 3 weeks of age. She was alternately constipated and squirting diarrhea the whole time she was a baby, hence her embarrassingly descriptive name. Thank goodness she outgrew all that!

Here we are at about 5 weeks. She looks a little disturbed. Maybe it is the grip I have her in. It is hard to hold something squirming in one hand and shoot a picture with the other.

Here she is relaxing in bed after breakfast. I think she was about 7 weeks here.

This was this very morning. Her favorite place to observe the morning routine is from the bathroom windowsill. Please don't notice the dirty window, or the pool chemicals sitting on the outside. I promise, I'll get them in today.

RIP Shorty

Our sweet little munchkin cat Shorty died this morning. It was something that I expected anytime, but she had been doing pretty well up until late last night. She had an abdominal mass and she lived with it for almost a year, so I guess she did pretty well to have made it comfortably that long. She was about 3-4 when I got her 10 years ago, making her about 13-14.
Her best buddy Elmo went a few months ago, so I guess she is with him now.

Here is a picture of my girl and her cat, "Bob". She calls him "Robert" when she gets mad at him for pestering her. No matter where she is in the house, Bob is somewhere near.

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Cholula gets a little one-on-one time.
She's really listening to the story of the "Three Bears".

The babies started eating solids yesterday and are doing pretty well with it. They are eating a home-made baby dog gruel. Yummy. It is ground cooked chicken with rice and vegetables. Pretty bland stuff, but they love it.

Spinach Casserole

My girl child is strange. I have never seen a 5 year old ask for white beans at a restaurant, or spinach for breakfast, but this one does. She loves tomato sammiches and cherry tomatoes
out-of -hand. Here's a spinach casserole I made her last week when she asked for it. I didn't have what I thought went in real creamed spinach, so I just put this together and it turned out pretty good. In fact, I ate the last of it for dinner tonight.
Spinach Casserole ala Coconut
2- 16 oz bags frozen spinach
1 cup sour cream
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 tablespoon butter or oil
2 eggs
1/2 block very soft cream cheese ( you could leave this out, but I had a half a chunk left, so I put it in)
1/2 cup grated real parmesan ( you could use any cheese you like or just leave it off altogether, just don't use that powdered crap in the green can)
1. Thaw the spinach in microwave, then empty into a large bowl. Pick up in handfuls and squeeze out as much moisture as you can. You will be surprised at how much water comes out and how small that much spinach turn out to be! Pour the water out and put the "squozed" spinach back in the big bowl
2. Saute the onion in the butter until tender. Add the garlic for just a minute, then dump the onion, garlic and buttery goodness into the spinach.
3. Mix the soup, sour cream and cream cheese in a bowl - you may have to really work it to get the cream cheese mixed in. Taste it and add salt and pepper and nutmeg to taste. I put in about 1/2 tsp salt and at least that much pepper. 1/4 tsp nutmeg is plenty.
4. Dump the soupy mixture into the bowl with the spinach and onion and mix well. If it is too dry, stir in a bit more sour cream.
5. Taste it and adjust salt and pepper. ( You will not die from the raw egg.)
6. Plop it into a greased baking dish and bake at 350 for about 30-40 minutes or until heated through. After 20 minutes or so, sprinkle the cheese on top and let it continue to bake until it gets melty and slightly browned.
I know you know that if there is a spice in a recipe you don't like, just change it to something else or leave it out. As long as it isn't a cake or other "baking" won't hurt anything.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

There is nothing sweeter....

...than a pile of sleeping little puppies. The little girls are growing fast. It is so hard to believe that they will be 4 weeks old next week. Dixie is venturing away from them a bit now and has been less fearsome when the other dogs go near them. That's "Tulip" in the front ( black and white), and "Cholula" in the back. The black one that is on her side is Angie and the one with her back to the camera is Blair's puppy. I'm not sure what she is going to call her.

With beauty, comes pain.....

The ladies couldn't take it anymore. There were some really strange errant eyebrows sticking out on Doc's face and they had to be removed! Sarah volunteered to take one for the team and go in for the kill. I vote that the next former hair-stylish who applies for a job be hired on the spot. We NEED that skill around here. I need my roots done.

Wii TV

I sent Daddy and the boy child to Best Buy today to get a publishing program that I have been wanting and they came back with sheepish grins on their faces saying how much fun they had playing Guitar Hero in the store. Ok, so we already have that in the closet for Christmas, so no problem.
Then Dad made the play ...." you know, we are really going to need a bigger TV for them to play the wii on. " I said, "ok." Within an hour, he was gone with the girl back to Best Buy to take advantage of "The Economy is in the Crapper" sale.
So, now I am in NASCAR hell. Tomorrow it will be pro-football hell. Not only is the picture and color enhanced, the SOUNDS are bigger too. I am thinking about calling the sleep number store and buying him a bed to put in here because I am not sure he will ever leave this room.

Chicken with Rice "Dressing"

( First of all, this picture may be copyrighted, so if you don't hear from me for a while, you will know that the blog cops came after me and locked me away. )

Doc asked me as he whirled out the door the other day, " Quick, what can I make with some chicken?" I quickly told him about the Chicken and rice stuff we had at my sister's once that I have been making freestyle ever since. It was my intention to write it down for him and email it, but I didn't. I think what he made turned out ok, but here's how I make what I make.

Chicken with "Rice Dressing"

4 large skin-on bone in chicken breasts ( or you could use a whole fryer)
1 large bell pepper
1 large onion
2 tbspoons butter ( or oil)
4-5 cups cooked rice ( brown or white is fine, I use brown success boil-in-bag)
1 cup cooked wild rice ( you can omit this if you like - I often do)
1 can cream of celery soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 cup sour cream
poultry seasoning

1. Boil the chicken in enough salted water to cover until done through. Take it out of the broth to allow cooling. Strain off the broth into jars and store in fridge to make soup or something else.
2. Cook rice according to package directions, set aside in a big bowl .
3. Saute the onion and bell pepper in the butter until softened. Don't you love the smell of that? Sometimes if my house smells doggy, I just saute some peppers and onions - or fry some bacon.
4. When the chicken has cooled, pull it off the bones, discarding bones and skin. Lay it in a big baking dish, covering the bottom. Might be a good idea to spray the dish with some cooking spray.
5. Mix the onions, peppers, soups, sour cream with the rice. Season to taste with salt and pepper, poultry seasoning and sage. The sage is what makes it taste like "dressing". I find that I use a lot of black pepper in this one. If it seems too dry, lob in some more sour cream, or find a can of cream of mushroom soup and pop that in too.
6. Spread the rice mixture over the chicken evenly, then pop it all in the oven at 350 for about 30 minutes until all heated through and a little browned on top.

I guess you could add something like some french green beans or broccoli to this if you wanted. I usually just make those as a side dish. You could put cheese on it too if that would help the kids eat it.

Best news about this is that it didn't raise my blood sugar much at all. It was about 86 before dinner and 96 one hour after we ate, so I guess I will keep making this one. The brown rice is really way better than white when it comes to glucose control, but you still do have to watch the portions!!!!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

I remember having one of these.

I was "googling" Raggedy Ann dolls to look at the faces and found this picture and it was just so cute I had to show it to all of you. "Why," you ask, "was I looking at dolls?" Coco the baby clown is going to go with me to the assisted living facility next week for their monthly birthday party and she wants to wear her "ragdoll" costume and I wanted to do her makeup to look like Raggedy Ann. It is really a navy blue dress with white polkadots and red accents, a pair of red leggings and some red converse shoes. I hope to be able to put some navy/white ruffles on the leggings and then find some red/white socks for her. Good thing I am off Monday!!!!

Thursday's TV Lineup

Well, nothing interesting happened today except house chores and some pretty boring cooking. I made pumpkin pies ( sugar kind), chicken/peppers/brown rice casserole ( recipe someday soon) and Low-Fat Creamed Spinach. Everyone has eaten and the dishes are done and it is only 6:50. I had to get it all done early tonight because Thursday is "Mom's TV night." I have been a Thursday night couch potato ever since the year that Chicago Hope and ER started.

Anyway, tonight I'll be watching:

I'm not really all that stoked about Survivor anymore - it was great the first 4-5 times, now not so much, but we still watch it.

Watching CSI these days is like watching your favorite dog waste away with some dread disease. We know that Warrick is going to die and that Grissom is leaving and Lawrence Fishburne is coming on as a wacko who replaces him. ( sorry if you didn't know that stuff- didn't mean to spoil it for you) . I say now that I am not going to watch after Gil is gone, but I know I will because there are supposed to be some contract-fulfilling guest appearances. Like all good series, when they change it too much, it dies- I figure it will have one more season.

Then, we have another dying dog, ER. Last week they killed Greg off in a freakish way, I'm not sure what happens this week, but I know that soon Abbey will be giving her notice. Luca is already gone and the let Ray get his legs cut off last season, ending the Neela-Ray arc. Maybe she will get involved with Dubanko or something interesting.
I need to get a life, huh?