Sunday, May 31, 2009

Another Collage

Sometimes, the cutest pictures I get are when they are acting like monkeys and trying to foil my attempts to get them to be still.
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Picture at the Park

It is so hard to get a good picture of more than one kid! It took about 50 frames to get the one in the center.
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Closet Purge

About three times a year, we have to have a closet purge to get rid of all the bits and pieces of flotsam that have accumulated in the kid's closets. Today was the boy's day to suffer. All of this stuff was in his closet. The closet is really small, so it is hard to believe that all this was in there.

He enlisted his dad to help him get it back organized. That is the smile of triumph because he got dad to do it instead of doing it all himself.

After taking out four large yard bags and a plastic tub full of stuff out, this is what it looked like. I still needed to vac and dust, but it was much better and I could even walk into the closet. ONe of these days, we are gonna have to by this child a matching set of furniture.

It won't be too long before he will have his little nest feathered with more little plastic toys from McDonald's and baseball schedules and all sorts of little treasures. He is a little bit like a hamster, storing his treasures where we can't see them. I love my little hamster boy.

Saturday Ballgame

Last night we went down to New Albany to my nephew's ball tournament . He is such a good ballplayer, and just an all-around good boy too. In this game, he was the catcher, but he also pitches and I have seen him play shortstop. I bet he could do any of it if he wanted to.
I bet they use a LOT of Oxyclean on these uniforms. I think I would have chosen pants the color of the infield dirt.
The game was won and they moved on to the championship today and are playing right now. I feel sure they are gonna win........ this little man is a winner in my book, no matter what the score of some ball game.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Spicy Crab Balls

Crab Puppies

3/4 cup buttermilk ( or plain milk, or you could use beer)
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups self rising corn meal
1 lb crab meat - drained and picked. (Get all the bits of shell out)
1 cup frozen corn kernels
5 green onions, chopped ( or about a fourth cup of regular old onion, chopped fine)
2 1/2 tsp hot sauce - red or green ( or maybe one minced jalapeno)
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
oil for frying - enough to deep fry - these babies need to be able to float

1. Mix together the buttermilk and eggs.
2. Add the corn muffin mix.
3. Fold in the crab, corn, onions, and hot sauce ( or jalapeno)
4. Add salt and pepper- stir.
5. Heat oil to about 330 degrees
6. Drop the crab mixture by heaping tablespoons in to oil and fry for 2-3 minutes
or until golden brown.
7. Move 'em onto a paper towel lined dish, and lightly salt
8. Serve with additional hot sauce.

These are a lot like the Crab Balls from Joe's Crab shack, which is a good place to eat, but they don't have hush puppies. I find that to be almost blasphemous to be a fish place in "The South " and not have hush puppies, which were meant by God to go with fish. Anyway, these are good and this is a little variation on a recipe from Paula Deen. Her recipe used corn muffin mix, which has SUGAR in it, which I just won't use because, to my knowledge, no one in my family "evah put sugah in theyah corn bray-ud." I use the muffin mix for corn pudding, which is sweet anyway, but I just think this is better without the sugar. I have made these with the hot sauce which was fine, but my preference is to use a finely minced jalapeno. The thing is, if you use the jalapeno, your eyes will be on fire later when you wipe away the tears you cry over how good these are. Just wash your hands after you mince the pepper up and be sure and take out the seeds and pith if you are wimpy about things being hot.

At least she matches the sheets.....

I went to wake up the child this morning and ......she had that bunny in the bed with her.
Not much I could say.......there was no bunny poop in the bed and "Ladybug" did seem content there under the covers. Oh well, why shouldn't she be as rotten as the rest of the petpeople around here?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Birds and Buns

This is our newest little friend, "Lynerd", aka "FreeBird" . He is actually quite tame, leading me to believe that someone trusted their wee friend's allegience just a little too much and took him outside unclipped. Either that or he made a break for it on his own.
He seems to be pretty amiable, and didn't mind being handled and plopped on a kid's head for a picture.
Uncle and Aunt has a bunch of baby bunnies ready for adoption, so guess who adopted one?

Oh well, it isn't like we don't already clean a lot of cages every few days anyway. Besides, now I will have someone to finish up the extra salad stuff I have so I won't have to toss it before it goes bad. She named this little bunya "Ladybug."
Welcome Freebird and Ladybug.........the more the merrier....I guess.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009


Bunny hugger......wonder where she gets that from?
This may be the best picture I have ever taken of this particular subject. Don'tcha just want to squeeze him?

Sunday, May 24, 2009

A Few More Pictures from the Zoo...

My children are like trained monkeys when it comes to posing for pictures. KK is not - it was pretty hard to get them all to look in the same direction at the same time. It was equally hard to get a picture of the front of KK's head - she turns her face away as soon as she sees the camera.

They wanted to see his teeth, and he was willing, so we had a dental show. I was surprised that he let me do it, but he kept getting closer and closer and seemed to want the attention.

I know that it isn't "PC" to exploit these little budgies like this, but it was really fun. The kids were thrilled to have them that close. I was surprised that my kids were that into it, because we have had a bunch of budgies in the past and they were never that interested. It has to be the stick and the challenge of getting them on it.

They are such beautiful little birds and seeing them fly in a big flock was really cool. I can only image what hundreds of them in the wild would look like. Someday we might have to take a trip "down under" to see!

What's in the Pantry? Salmon Casserole

I have been trying to use up some of the stuff in my pantry, so I had to figure out something to do with the canned salmon besides "croquette's". I really am not woman enough to just eat it as is out of the can, so I had to come up with something that maybe the family would eat to help me go through it since there are about 6 cans in there.

Using a few other ingredients I had on hand, here is what I came up with. The beauty of it is that since the salmon is already cooked, it only has to heat through and get bubbly and brown on top.

1 - 14 oz can of pink salmon
1 cup of cornbread stuffing mix ( plus 2 tbsp extra for topping)
1 cup chicken broth or warm water
2 eggs
1/4 cup of chopped bell pepper - frozen is fine
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 cup grated cheese ( I used jalapeno havarty)
whatever seasonings you like - I used blackening seasoning
butter- about 1 tbsp

1. Put stuffing mix in a mixing bowl and soften with chicken broth or water.
2. Dump the salmon on a plate and pick out the bones and skin. This is disgusting. I think that next time I grill salmon, I am going to keep the leftovers and make this with that.
3. Put salmon on top of stuffing
4. Heat butter in small saute pan and then add bell pepper and onion. Cook on meduim heat until softened. Add to top of salmon.
5. Add salt and pepper and blackening ( or other) seasoning until you think it is right. Mix well.
6. Whisk eggs in a small bowl, then add to mixture, blending in well.
7. Spoon into a greased casserole dish
8 . Top with cheese and the other 2 tbsp of stuffing mix.
9. Bake at 350 until set and bubbly on top.

Feel free to add in whatever you like. A few shrimp might make this even better, or maybe even substitute crab for the salmon. I am thinking that might be my next experiment.

We really liked this, but I feel like it might be better with fresh salmon. It tasted sort of like the seafood stuffing from Costco that they put in their stuffed salmon. Anyway, the girl child and her daddy ate it really well and we finished up the leftover for supper tonight along with various other leftovers from the fridge. I promise to take a picture of the finished product next time.

Saturday at the Zoo

I took the kids to the zoo for a little "wearing down" activity before the rain sets in for the weekend. Nothing better than tired kids, I say.

They both had the goofies going on , so we got a lot of silly faces.

The new "Birds and Bees" exhibit is open in the butterfly flight, and man was it a big hit with my duo.

The object is to get a budgie to light on your stick and eat millet. It's pretty easy to get them, so I am thinking that they are keeping the little things just a wee bit hungry so that they WANT that millet. Or they are feeding pellets ,so the millet is a really special treat. I didn't see a lot of seed waste in the flower beds other than millet hulls, and not a whole lot of that, so I couldn.t tell if they were just cleaning up exceptionally well or what.

The little chica , as usual, proved to be the better bird wrangler. I was surprised at how patient and still she was as she "caught" the birds. Of course, she has taught the idiot Bindi to jump through the hula hoop, so maybe she has a gift with animals. Hmmm....

Here she got a "3-fer" and held them there for several minutes. If you bobble the stick in the least, they fly, so she was doing very well.

They probably would have stayed in the flight all day, but we finally got them to agree to leave with bribes of ice cream. That always works!

Friday, May 22, 2009

#2 of 11......

We made it through the first day of summer vacation yesterday with only a couple of little minor skirmishes. Today my plans include cleaning the bathroom....which will involve a LOT of clorox. I have got to find a place for the thirty-seven different half bottles of hair products that are all over the counter in there. If I don't post something later today, send help because we may have succumbed to the bleach fumes!!!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Awards Day

Our little professor got an award for being on the honor roll every time, all year long. He worked pretty hard this year and has improved so much!
There were lots of awards given out, and one student got a trophy, which inspired a lot of envy.

But that was soon forgotten and everyone was back to smiles! It was a great school year even though there were a few potholes in the area of behavior, but those smoothed out pretty much and things are looking promising for the second grade!

Tail Dock!

Our little ballerina princess decided a few weeks ago that she REEEEEEEEAAAALLY wanted to get her hair cut - short. With a dance recital looming in which she was supposed to have a ponytail and a bun, it wasn't something we could do at the time. I told her that she could get a trim when school was out, hoping that she would forget all about it. Oh no...this was the first day out of school and it was imperative that we go to the hair place and get it done.

She would have no part of just a little shape up on the ends. It had to be all the way. So, here she is with her pony tail, which she is going to donate to Locks Of Love so that " the sick kids at St Jude can get them some new hair." I was surprised that she knew about that, and I am proud that she did.
The stylist told me that it would likely be long enough to get into a ponytail/bun by next December's recital. Of course, it is isn't, we can glue it down and put a fake one on there.

I just love this view...... The best thing is that now Dad won't have to mess with a pony tail this summer !

#1 of 11.....

So, yesterday was my last day at work.....and last night we went to Bahama Breeze for dinner and whatnot. As you can see above, we had a good time. There were others there too, but this was the only picture that was really focused well. I really don't like that camera and Joyce has one just like it ( which she doesn't like either) , so she took the picture since she is used to it's little snotty ways.

Now it is today and I was up at 4:28 as usual. Dog 's do not understand the concept of sleeping late, although I have to say that I didn't actually TELL them last night that school was out and I was gonna be home and that we were planning a late morning. What I should have done was slip Bindi a thunder pill last night before bed that would last all night so that she would still be a little groggy this morning and maybe not be quite so adament about getting up and out. It really didn't matter to me about getting up anyway. I ahve already cleaned the kitchen and done two loads of laundry and now the dog blankies are in the wash. I am gonna hang all those out on the line for some sunshine.

Other plans for today include....a walk with the dogs and kids -some in stroller, some on leash, some wearing roller skates. It will look like a parade going down the street. The puppies have to go in the stroller, Bindi, Dixie and Lily can walk, and the kids will roller skate. After we have done that, we are going to clean the kid's bedrooms and then get dressed to go to town and grocery shop. I have been lax and have let us run out of everything, so we are gonna have to go to Aldi and stock up since we are all going to be home for several days. I figure we might stop by my new work and let the kids scope it out. I may cook some neat stuff maybe there will be some pictures later.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Spring Recital 2009

This afternoon was the Spring Dance Recital....and boy was it great! My girl did a fabulous job with her THREE numbers, although the day started out rough when we couldn't find the BALLET SHOES that she HAD to have for two of the dances. After several hours of searching and fussing and phone calls all over town, we gave up and went to the venue without shoes. Luckily, Miss N had found the shoes at the studio and brought them with her. The day was saved.
Of course, my bitsy little camera is not tough enough to get long shots on the stage, so we will have to make do with these "paparazzi" shots until we get some from our photographic grandma.

She has a million poses, doesn't she?

We celebrated the end of our third year of carting her to dance twice a week with a fine dinner and now I am quite pooped! IT has been a LONG day!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day - Pancake Edition

Happy Mother's Day! Hope you all have a great day, whether you have kids or not, whether it is raining or sunny. Here it is pouring and I have 4 kids to feed, so we are having PANCAKES!

Of course, I made plain sour cream pancakes for the kids, because they are finicky and won't eat things that are different. Ever since our excursion to IHOP last week, I have wanted Harvest Grain and Nut pancakes really badly. I first had them in D.C. 12 years ago when we had gone up there for a wedding and stayed at a hotel with an IHOP next door. They were new on the menu then, and have had real staying power.

Of course, I CAN'T HAVE the super-yummy, regular ones, so I decide to come up with my own simple version using the Sandra Lee method of mixing "store bought" stuff with home ingredients.

So here we go:
First, I found a medium sized glass bowl. Then dumped in about 2 cups of Fiber One pancake mix. I then added enough water to make a pourable batter.

Then I added one packet of this oatmeal with nuts and another half cup of water. It does have a little sugar, but in this case, it was all I had. I might add some whole grain cereal or other
fiber-filled item next time. Also I tossed in a handful of chopped pecans that I had leftover from brownies. Then after letting this sit a few minutes, they were cooked on a hot griddle with a bit ( ok.... a lot) of butter. You could use margarine or cooking spray, but what the heck. Butter is not from the devil, enjoy it.

Now, you can't have pancakes without syrup of some sort...and with my malady I have to use this sugar-free "breakfast syrup". I have to say, that it is not a ringer for regular pancake syrup, but it will suffice when you have no other choice. It is a little bit snotty in texture, but when it hits the warm pancakes, it thins some. Not a really strong maple flavor either, but again, it'll do. These cakes would be good with some melted strawberry jam or apricot preserves too, and maybe some ..dare I say it....whipped cream.

So, I tested my glucose before I ate the "full-of- fiber and nuts" pancakes and I was at 88. One hour after having a couple of 6 inch pancakes, butter, and sugar-free syrup, I was at 92. an hour after that, I was at 103. What this tells me is that it is A-OK to have these once in a while if I have the yearning for some pancakes. I should have had an egg or bacon with the pancakes, though, because now at 11:29 I am wanting to eat again.

Well, so much for the medical experimentation for today. Now I am going to celebrate Mother's day by climbing Mount Washmore and hopefully reducing it's peak by about 5 loads!

*** photos for this post were shamelessly lifted from Google images. Hope no one feels like I have stepped on their toes. It is always easier to ask for forgiveness than it is permission!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

If we ever live out in the country again.......

......we are going to have some milk goats so I can make GOAT CHEESE!!!!!!!!!!!!

Here it is in the package. I had it on the now famous "Chicken Bryan" the other night at Carrabba's and am stuck on it. I spread it on my one piece of double fiber wheat toast this was so good! Tonight we had a copy-cat version of the Chicken Bryan, only instead of lemon-butter sauce I used white wine cause we didn't have any lemons. It was not quite the same, but the family didn't know the difference. Girl child LOVED it and ate her chicken, and then some of mine. It has sun-dried tomatoes and a gob of basil in it too, which is what makes it "I-talian."
Here is what it looks like out of the package. It is sparkly white and the texture is like a cross between cream cheese and feta - sort of creamy/crumbly. It has a really tangy flavor, but is actually quite mild. It comes in different flavors....all sorts of herbed combinations. This roll was just plain, but I bet the others are delicious. Get some and try it on a home made pizza , a salad, or just a piece of good crusty bread. I bet you'll like it!