We all know that I have a love for my home state that rivals...nothing. There is some pride going on here. The trees, the lake, the snow...
Then I saw this website that someone posted on Facebook:
Now, for those of you that aren't from MI, you probably won't care. But I got such a kick out of their stuff. Totally planning an order.
p.s. Happy New Year, wherever you may be!
Now if you don't like mint, you're off the hook. This one isn't for you, my friend.
If, however, you are like me and could survive solely on a diet of mint chocolate chip ice cream (especially if it has chewy fudge chunks instead of chips - yum), then you might want to keep reading.
I found a recipe for mint balls (There is NO way to make that sound less dirty. Balls = funny word) in my holiday cooking/baking magazine. I was all, "I should make these." Upon examination, the recipe called for some serious microwave usage. And you know, I don't have one. Usually I wing it when a recipe calls for microwave time and just use the toaster oven or stove top, but I wasn't going to chance this. So it was a no go.
But then HOLD THE PHONE. My parents have a microwave! Score! So the pictures below detail the mint balls in making. In Michigan. At my parents' house.
First you mix the inside ingredients. It takes a lot of powdered sugar. LOT.
So good, in fact, that I might bring home my microwave from work (a co-worker gave it to me when she retired, I didn't purchase it) next holiday season and make these bad boys.
I'm quite proud of all my bravery this holiday season. I tried at least five NEW recipes, which is a bunch for me. And all were a success!
Anyone else try out a new recipe? Or maybe a family favorite?
Glee, Season 1
***In reality, this little choir has been perched atop the piano at my grandma's every Christmas for my entire life. I love them, but apparently they are starting to age, as all good things do.
It's been way too long without a post. My tens of readers, I apologize.
I left for Michigan on Saturday and as I write this I am sitting, enjoying the morning sun, and looking at everything all snow-covered outside. So pretty. Especially for a girl who lives in PHX and there isn't a snowball's chance in hell for snow when she returns...
I really don't have much to post at the moment. I can tell you that I made toffee with chocolate, crackers, and nuts...but did I take pictures? No.
And after a good five minutes, I figured out how to turn on the Blue Ray thing and listen to Christmas music on Pandora on the T.V. Go me.
So all is good here. I'm going to have some breakfast and maybe do a little crafty or a little bakey.
Hope you all are doing well. Any fun holiday plans?
The first shot is of Ghetto 1. Ghetto 1 protects this fine city from hoodlums and their shananigans. Not so intimidating during daylight, but much more frightening at night when they have the wrong apartment window and instead of shining it in the meth lab upstairs from you they shine it in your window. I mean, not that I experienced that for real. Just guessing.
Ghetto 1 was a familiar sight my first few weeks in the city when I lived with a friend. Bless her heart for taking me in. Bless us both for surviving.
Anyone else have a Ghetto 1 that keeps an eye on the ground below?
p.s. I am not sure why two of the pictures are HUGE. I don't really care. They're two of my favorites, so maybe I'm unintentionally highlighting them.
She brings me the cookies. I tell myself, "Wait until lunch. Wait until lunch." But you see, I didn't have breakfast this morning and TWO of the cookies had fruit stuff. So I ate one. Nom. And then while reaching for the second half of the cookie, I bumped into a thumbprint cookie with homemade butter cream frosting. I touched it, so I needed to eat. Kind of like, you break it, you buy it. So I ate it. It was delicious. Nom again. In fact, I am pretty sure that I could survive on a diet of just those cookies. But then I wouldn't fit through doors, so probably best if I didn't.
Well, then I ate the second thumbprint because I have NO self-control. And then I saw that one of the other cookies had a little filling and I couldn't tell if it was frosting or fruit or what. So I ate it to find out. Nom again again. It was like an almond paste, by the way. Delciousness.
So all I had was one last cookie and at that point I was like, might as well. Yum.
That is my story about how I ate five (small) fancy cookies for breakfast.
Anyone else have a food story that is slightly embarrassing but totally worth it?
p.s. I am listening to novelty rap from the late eighties/early nineties. Does anyone else want to bust a move?
Okay. We started out by waiting around awhile. The tattoo guy (tattooer? tattooist?) was drawing Jeremiah's tat from scratcheroni and while I already had mine drawn out (by the art teacher at school) there was some slight altering that needed to be done. So we waited.
Flash forward about 20 years and a little more west of Michigan. Same thing. I was SO excited/nervous/anticipating the tattoo that once he started and I realized that the pain wasn't going to kill me, all that crud went to my belly and I got wobbly. In fact, I turned white and my lips turned blue. Things started to look far away and like they were through a tunnel. Seriously, closest I've ever been to fainting. I was sweating more than Nixon on his television debate against Kennedy. Or more than Lindsey Lohan in court. There was a lot of panic and a lot of me wanting to lie down (wasn't allowed) or lean forward (wasn't allowed). Jeremiah was trying to be supportive but my superhero sense of smell was working overtime and I could smell EVERY smell and the deodorant that he was wearing was not helping me to keep the barf down.
But are you ready for this? I pulled through. No fainting. No yakking. Here I am drinking my second glass of water. I'm all, "See? Fine. Ignore the sweat-soaked clothes and let's get this show on the road! We're burnin' daylight!"
After all that, the tattoo took about five minutes. Seriously. And THEN the guy told me that I got the tattoo in one of the most painful places but hadn't wanted me to know ahead of time and change my mind. Nice.
P.S. Jamming to the Christmas music right now.
P.P.S. If you are wondering about the pain, let me tell you. On a scale of one to ten, ten being the worst pain imaginable, I would rate this a seven. Maybe six point five. Totally do-able.
P.P.P.S. Girls, when you are getting ready to puke and you are surrounded by men it is up to you to pull your hair back. They will NOT do it for you. Just FYI.
I decided the other night (while he was trying to fall asleep) that we should play "Name That Movie". I tend to have problems falling asleep so I like to keep myself entertained instead.
So I said "Where are all the good men dead? In the heart or in the head?"
And he named the movie. Which is probably why we are together. And I was all shocked and surprised that he got it because it wasn't a super obvious quote, like, "Our pets' heads are fallin' off!"
If you can name the second quote, we are probably destined to be friends. Maybe we already are. Maybe you need to leave a comment and tell me how you are super awesome and know the movie. If, however, you know where the first quote originated, we are most likely destined to be not just friends, but besties. I heart you already.
Following his righteous win, we had the conversation below:
Please keep in mind he was trying to sleep the whole time.
E: I can't believe you got that!
J: Of course I did. I used to own that movie.
E: You did? Really?
J: I don't know.
E: Well, was it before we met?
J:Yeah, I guess.
E: So you might say that you had it B.E....Before Emily?
J: I guess so.
E: Like, how many years B.E. did you get rid of it?
J: Actually thinks about it - Um, It was probably 1B.E.
E: Sheesh. You should have kept it until A.E. and then I wouldn't have had to take my dad's copy of the dvd.
J:Yeah, too bad.
And we now count time based on B.E. and A.E. Just saying. So for example, we moved into the house 4 A.E., four years after he met me.
So fun. No? Just me?
Anyone have any great suggestions for sleeping? I CAN'T sleep.
Let me explain
So I went out and bought a tree. And color-themed ornaments. Blue, white, and silver. So pretty. If I couldn't have my old ornaments full of memories, then I would buy pretty new ones.
Then I got to CA., where I would be spending Christmas with the Jer-to-the-miah. The dude had NO tree. He had no ornaments. So there was a discussion and voila! A tree and ornaments, at my disposal. So for now, we have TWO trees. Dos. Deux. Like that, y'all.
This post documents the tree that lived its first Christmas in Sacramento.
Anyone else have a tree that they want to share? Any color themes you love?
I'm a Gleek.
But here's my favorite part. If
Season 1, episode 4.
I couldn't find one that shows it, but it goes on to show Kurt (who is tiny & gay & not so popular, but completely wonderful) winning the game by kicking the ball (after dancing to Beyonce) into the goal (endzone? what's it called?) with his tough manly man dad watching. Then his dad is screaming "That's my boy! That's my son!" and I start crying.
P.S. I sing this song to Jeremiah regularly, just so everyone knows.
P.P.S. Any other Gleeks out there?
I thought that I would give you a moment in my life type of experience. Because unless you teach at an elementary school, you don't know. Even high school teachers...no. "You don't know me!" (That is one of Jeremiah's favorite lines from his customers when he did the phones at work.) And I'm sure that you have exciting work stories to share, too. If you'd like to leave a comment and share, I'm all for it.
Seriously. You know I am all for sharing.
Yesterday I had bus duty after school. Picture two teachers trying to line up about two hundred kids and walk them to the buses.
Yeah. So. Much. Fun.
Except yesterday? No. Freakin'. Buses.
For HALF AN HOUR.
So while the other teacher has an impromptu parent teacher conference, I am dealing with the kids. Here are some of the going-ons that I experienced yesterday. These are one hundred percent REAL conversations. For realsies. They occurred between the dancing and singing. I find it important to keep things light-hearted.
Student - Camp was fun, but...
Emily- But what?
S- Then I threw up s'mores.
E- Yeah, not so fun, huh?
S- Hey teacher!!
E- Hey student!!
S- Teacher, my name isn't student!
E- Well, student, my name isn't teacher.
S- My name is (says name)
E- What are you doing (says name)?
E- Yes you are. Can you please STOP unbuttoning my shirt?
E- Because I'd like to keep my shirt on today.
E- (buttons shirt back up)
S- Is he the new student?
E- Was he here yesterday?
E - Then he's the new student.
S- If I have to walk ALL the way to that bus...
E- You're gonna what?
S- I'm going to be pissed off.
E- (rant. straight up rant. for several minutes. )
Happy Friday, everyone. Enjoy your weekend. If you have a funny work story, please share.
All of her underwear was dirty.
And as all (most? some?) college students can tell you, why pay money to do laundry when you can wait and do it at home? I know that there were times when it was slim pickins in my "closet" but I just wore whatever because I didn't want to pay to do laundry as I would be going home soon. Sometimes I could go three weeks. Sometimes longer.
I owned a LOT of undies, yo. Just for that purpose.
But I never wore my bathing suit to finals. Never.
Why the post about undies, bathing suits, and finals?
I am currently writing a beast of a final research paper (which may or may not have induced tears and pouting on more than one occasion).
It has been two weeks without clean laundry.
Slim.Pickins, people. Slim pickins, for sure.
The bathing suits are on call. I'll just leave it at that.
p.s. I am not at all apologetic if that was too much information. You should have stopped when you read "Bathing Suit Underwear".
Side Dish: One year I made cranberry sauce FROM SCRATCH. No shit. What was I thinking? And then I went outside, grabbed some palm fronds, and fashioned myself a skirt. Just kidding. It was a brief, dark period in my life where I thought change was good and I thought I was a cooking goddess. Anyway, cranberry sauce from scratch? Totally not worth the time and I didn't care for the consistency. After that Thanksgiving I ran into Ocean Spray at the grocery store and I was all, "hello, sailor" and now we are on-again. I will never cheat on the Spray again.
Then like this before I froze it: (Nommy, right?)
It actually called for cupcake liners instead of a mold, but I kind of think the cupcake liners are wasteful. Plus, I only had one paper liner and the rest are plastic ones which I only use for s'mergencies.
Then like this:
So Good. And Creamy. And Delicious.
It was so simple and extremely yummy, so I imagine I'll be making it again sometime. It was almost like getting to eat dessert with dinner. It was THAT good. I mean, I'll make it after I finish making my own clogs out of cactus ribs.
p.s. The recipe was inspired by my Aunt Cronchie, but it is not actually her recipe, as I don't own cherries or apricots. And hers called for...cherries and apricots (duh). So I went scrounging and found this instead. So Auntie, you are my inspiration for frozen fruit salads! Yeah, baby!!!
Oh, wait. He is a grumpy old guy.
Or, sort of like a wolf in disguise.
Or, sort of like a sleazy European (I love Europe, for sure, but there is sleaze to be found on every continent.)
p.s. I reached a point where I was laughing and couldn't hold the camera still and he got to the point where he was all, "hey asshole, let me in". This shot is from before either of those things happened.
p.p.s. I've now included a handy little envelope thing in the bottom of every post. That way if you think, wow this girl is
Mama’s Holiday Wish List Meme
1. What is your holiday wish for your family?
My holiday wish is that everyone be happy and healthy. And full. Good food is a must.
2. What is your Christmas morning tradition?
Here in AZ we have cocoa and open presents. In MI we would open presents and have a yummy breakfast. Always about the food, I tell 'ya!
3. If you could ask Santa for one, completely decadent wish for yourself, what would it be?
I'd love to do some more traveling. I want to go to Italy. And Ireland. And Hawaii. And Greece...Anyone up for a trip?!
4. How do you make the holidays special without spending any money?
Well, food always helps, for sure. We also play a lot of games and watch holiday movies and listen to holiday music.
5. What games did you play with your family growing up?
Every. Game.Imaginable...Scrabble, Payday, Clue, SolarQuest, Hugger Mugger, Tabboo, Scattergories, Solitaire, Trivial Pursuit, Rummikub, etc.
6. What holiday tradition have you carried on from your own childhood?
I still collect meaningful ornaments. Each one has a story or memory attached. That way when I break out the Christmas stuff, I can think about exciting trips, family, and good times.
7. Where would you go for a Christmas-away-from-home trip?
Christmas away from home? Probably somewhere COLD, as being in PHX we do not see the snow. Not so much. Big surprise, right? Maybe a nice trip to Alaska. Or Canada. Or even Colorado.
8. Check out GameStop and tell us, what are the three top items on your GameStop Wish List this year?
For sure I would like just about any of the games listed under "puzzles and cards", some fun "skins" for the controllers, and maybe the Mario game (old school).
I used the tea lights that I got on clearance with the little glasses from Salvation Army. I added some pine cones (on clearance last year), plus plates from Sal. Army. The pumpkins are from...Walmart (!) 75% off a few weeks ago. The burlap runner is left over from the drum shade.
I really wanted brown place mats but didn't have any, so I grabbed two sheets of scrapbook paper instead.
We liked it and it felt nice to make something special even though it was just dinner for two. Dinner was terrific, too.
How was everyone else's Thanksgiving?
He is: listening to a record, searching through his photographs, and playing the bass. All at once. I would find that over-stimulating, but apparently Jeremiah? Not so much.
Plus, for your viewing enjoyment, notice that he is in jammy bottoms, a long-sleeved shirt I brought back from MI, and a How to Train Your Dragon hat.
Sweet look, Babe.
Just kidding. We aren't that nerdy.
Not all the time, anyway.
I wanted to share a project that Jeremiah did this weekend:
He turned a very cool piece of vinyl (Rolling Stones, yo) into a clock.
We actually ended up using my Cricut (LOVE.IT.) to make numbers out of the album cover. Yes, it is cool. You dig it?
P.S. Jeremiah had so much fun (especially picking out the vinyl) that he's decided to offer up his services. If you know of anyone that is a music buff, vinyl fanatic, or punk (doesn't it look punkish/modish/eighties?) they might enjoy one. Let us know. He's offering his services for way cheaper than you might find elsewhere.
If you aren't into it, then I hope you enjoyed this technicolor post. And the craftiness.
I'm not entirely sure why the pool is so vivid (I didn't enhance it), but here's the view from the patio.
And then a view from inside, looking to the left of the yard. You can see the patio and palms.
We were hoping to sell the fountain (visible in the gourd/Alfred H. post, but not this one) this summer and use the money to create a really nice outdoor living space. Apparently no one wants a fountain that would look at home in front of Caesar's Palace. What's that all about? So the upgraded backyard dreams will have to wait. For now, we are content with it as is.
I think mostly that we love it because it is a tiny bit of green. We only water for about a minute three nights a week, which obviously seems to do the trick. Plus, there are trees, so we have some privacy from neighbors on the back and on one side. Ooh, there is the pool, which makes me happy. Yeah, it isn't perfect, but it makes us happy.
Anyone else have a backyard that they love?
Went to my new ENT yesterday. I have been having problems with my allergies since I've moved here, and they just keep getting worse. And my family doctor is clueless (I'm looking for a new one. She also told me the answer to my muscle problems was sports drinks. Apparently she mistakes me for being so dumb that I don't know the difference between ache-y muscles and muscles that are on fire and being smashed with a mallet. I tried the drinks, just in case. They didn't work.).
Anyway, I went to the ENT.
He was funny. He was nice. He was prompt. He suggested a course of action - which I love.
He numbed my nose, throat, and sinuses. So he could see all the action up in there.I'm not sure if I've had this done before. It opens the nose up so he can stick a long black thing up there (with a camera?). I closed my eyes for it. Nothing I needed to see. But can I say? The only thing weirder than feeling those parts fall asleep? Feeling them wake up. Weirdest damn thing. Felt a bit silly, trying to eat my dinner and you know, swallow.
I was having serious ear problems. SERIOUS. Weird noises, slight pain, etc. He takes a deep look. He grabs these ultra-sharp scissors.
It is at this point that I grab his coat. I am THAT patient. Some doctors get weirded out by my touching. I touch. Or tap. Or even swat. My chiropractor calls his personal approach "get in, get it done, get the hell out of the way". I tend to do little taps or sometimes hit.
Not hard. Just so they know I'm there.
Anyway, I grab the coat, he pauses (but apparently isn't weirded out) to say that I'd best not move. Okey Dokey. Ten-Four. I drop the coat.
The scissors go IN MY EAR and they pull out...
a teeny, tiny, itty-bitty...
All the pain and irritation. Caused by a single hair. I'm not too embarrassed by this because we're clean people. I'll chalk it up to "it was bound to happen." I've never not had a pet. One hair is bound to make its way into my ear. And I clean my ears but this baby was way in there. Remember the scissors?
Could have been worse. I had a student with a tick in the ear. I knew a person with a moth in their ear. LIVING THINGS. So my hair? Not a big deal.
Anyway, today I'm feeling about 90% good. Let's hope it stays that way. Hope my story wasn't TMI. Lovesies you.
On Halloween , Jeremiah was shootin' the sh- I mean, breeze with our neighbors. One of which hasn't spoken to us in the entire year we've been there. Regardless of the smiles, waves, whatever...nothing.
But on Halloween she was chatty. Most witches are.
Anyway, she asked if Jeremiah had gotten a new tattoo.
Which means, this year that she hasn't been speaking to us, she has been memorizing our features and details. He didn't see the weirdness. But then I pointed out that in order for her to recognize anything as new, she must have memorized his others. From a distance. Which is weird to me. Is she watching out the window? Is she planning a sketch for America's Most Wanted? I just find it a bit odd that she can identify something as new when she's never met him to know what was old.
p.s. For those of you that don't already know, I've had some issues with my "delicate health" lately. In fact, I ended up in the hospital for a fun visit last week and was out of commission (as in, couldn't do ANYTHING) for...well, still. Except now I'm back to work. So I'm doing a bit better after a week. And everyone knows at work. So interesting. We call it Crayola Wireless. The gossip mill runs strong in schools, I tell ya'. So anyway, posts are sporadic and at times they may be a bit...sparse. I'm used to writing almost every other day, which is hard to do when you are W.A.U. (without arm use). Love you all for still checking in.
p.s. Jeremiah was still thinking that perhaps it wasn't that weird. So I asked him whether the neighbor that noticed (or any other neighbor, for that matter) had tattoos. He got the point.
Trip to the optometrist today. That's always fun. When I first moved here, I went to a Nationwide chain that was covered by my insurance and offered me HORRIBLE service.
After about two years I said, "Screw this" (Actually, I probably dropped the f-bomb. I found out I'd been wearing the WRONG prescription contacts for an entire year. You might have dropped the f-bomb, too.).
I left and found a doctor that isn't covered as much as the crappy place but I get much better service of a much higher quality.
And it was today that I was informed that...
I need bifocals. f-bomb inserted here. I knew it before I went in, but still.
So anyway, I am going to go over to Sun City (as soon as I can see again and my pupils aren't as big as frisbees) and I'm going to get myself a pair of cheaters at their Walgreens. I figure all those wacky old ladies in Sun City probably have some funky glasses.
I'm going to get a pair. And I'm going to rock them. Just you wait and see. I'll be all eccentric and crafty and awesome.
F-bomb-it, I'll kick some serious bifocal ass.
p.s. I'm listening to Don McLean. Yeah, oldies. Fitting, isn't it? Seeing as how I'm apparently an oldie now. Oh, so sad.
p.s. What I'm listening to now: crows or blackbirds outside. So Freaking Loud. All day. And vinyl. Jeremiah has declared it an all-vinyl day.
p.p.s.Hey, would you like more deets on the tattoo experience? A picture of me almost fainting (I'm serious.)? Jeremiah's cool tat? Yeah, me too. Jeremiah has ALL the pictures and isn't sending them to me so I can blog. What a doof. Maybe if someone comments (!) he will feel the pressure and send the photos. And, yeah, I'll still eventually post the stuff. You can continue lurking if you'd like. No worries.
p.p.p.s. Hey. Thanks for all of you that are still voting for me. I see wonderful people in Ohio, MI, and CA (who are you, CA?) are voting. It means a lot. Thanks! Oh, and my mom informed me that you can vote once a day per internet browser (like Firefox, Safari, Internet Explorer, etc.).
I love both the shot above and below. I love the shadows on Spike.
The Kisser. Hiding/burrowing in the blankets.
Lean on me.
Below- He just looks so flippin' confused.
So I've noticed in the two days that I've used the camera that even when using the flash, it doesn't create red-eye like a point and shoot. In addition, I get a lot less shots that end up blurry. Thanks for checking out my pictures...and my pooches.