Getting my way on Mother’s Day


Greetings all,

First, let me wish all of you Mothers in the blogosphere a very happy Mother’s Day!

I’m being selfish with my time today, because I can get away with it. Mother’s Day, much like a birthday, is a good excuse to gather with family and friends, eat good food and enjoy each others company. It’s not necessarily my favorite holiday, as that slot has been occupied for a very long time by Thanksgiving, but it does have it’s good points. Top on the list of Mother’s Day’s good points is that I get to say what goes.

Here’s my list of things I want today… and by golly, I’m going to get all of it.

1. I want to spend time on my blog (check…mission accomplished!). I get precious little time to come out here anymore, to write or to read my favorite blogs. Today, I get to spend time here. Yes!

2. I want to cook lasagna from scratch today. I love to cook, and don’t get a chance to very often. I have invited my parents over for supper tonight, and when I told Mom what was on the menu, she tried to tell me I should buy a frozen lasagna instead of making it from scratch. I was surprised at how I almost came completely unhinged. I know her heart was in the right place – she didn’t want me to put too much effort into cooking dinner on Mother’s Day. She just doesn’t understand how much like to cook, and how deprived I am in that department. That’s ok… I’ll get my way in the end.

3. I want asparagus. (Demanding wench, aren’t I?) I haven’t had asparagus in years because my picky children won’t eat it, and it really doesn’t pay me to buy it if I am the only one that likes it. Today, it’s just too bad for everyone else that doesn’t like it. I. Will. Have. My. Asparagus! In fact, I have a lovely new recipe that I found on Pinterest for roasted asparagus with olive oil and thyme. I can’t wait!

4. I want to clean my house. The boys are generally pretty good about helping out around the house, but their idea of clean and my idea of clean are galaxies apart. I’ve spent such precious little time at home lately that what little I am able to do gets undone pretty quickly. Today, that gets corrected, even to the point of scrubbing out the fridge. I think something died in there, and is crying out for a decent burial. Argh!

5. I want to spend time in my yard. Spring finally did make it to North Dakota, and there hasn’t been a snowflake in sight for a good three weeks. I think Winter is finally gone for good this year, but I’ll leave my collection of snow shovels out until June 1, because I am just that superstitious about that sort of thing. My yard needs a good raking, and my strawberry/kitchen garden needs to be weeded. There are lots of plants returning from last year, but the grass is trying to overtake them. Time to get out the gloves and open a can of whoop-ass on that nasty invader.

There it is…my top five demands for today, in all of their glorious depravity. Like I said, today I get what I want, and no one best get in my way…or else! 😉

Lilacs half bloomed on May 23rd 2010

Here’s hoping all of you Moms in the blogosphere get exactly what you want, how you want it, and when. More importantly, I hope you have a lovely day with your families and friends.

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Getting old, or getting practical?


Last night the plan was to watch a little tv with My Flirt and then we were going to go out and listen to some live music at a local bar. We were going to ring in the New Year in a place full of people, music and frivolity. I was tired, and didn’t feel so energetic, and he wasn’t feeling so well either, so I turned to him and let him know that if he was good with staying in, so was I.  So we did.

He commented to me some time later that we must be getting old for not wanting to go out on New Years Eve. After thinking about it, I have to say that we are practical. Why go out in the bitter cold when you don’t feel well, when you can have a perfectly nice time cuddled up with your sweetie watching a good movie?

I would imagine that getting older has a hand in making practical decisions. I know a great many people who are my age who still live very social lives, and love to party hard. I tried really hard for a great many years to keep up with everyone else, but have come to a place in my life where I recognize that I am just not the social butterfly I’d always wanted to be. And, I am finally ok with that.

My poor Flirt, on the other hand, is the total opposite. He is a very social creature, and loves to be amongst people. If he’d have felt better, I know we’d have gone out for the evening. However, he has come to an age of practicality as well, I think.

The fantastic news here is that there are lots of ways to celebrate the New Year, and our quiet evening home in front of the tv was exactly what we both needed.

In other news, I managed to pack in some last-minute fun into the end of my year:

~My friends and I managed to avoid the 2012 apocalypse by gathering at my house on the Winter Solstice. We enjoyed each others company, ate good food and laughed much. There are plans to do this more often. Why wait for a faux apocalypse to get together?

~My Flirt took Younger Son and I ice fishing. We had never been ice fishing before, and it was an interesting experience. Luckily we had a portable ice fishing hut because a terrible wind came up. Northern Pike by BZI then made the terrible mistake of stepping into one of the test ice holes the guys had drilled earlier. It had filled in enough that I couldn’t see it, and I went in all the way up over my knee. I did dry out by sitting in front of the heater, dangling my sock and wet leg and boot liner in front of it.  After all of that, we only got a few bites, and no fish. I did witness a monster Northern Pike swim under several of our ice holes. It was still a good day, and I hope we get to go again sometime.

~We saw The Hobbit. Wow! As expected, this movie packs a lot into almost three hours. Not only was it visually stunning, but it’s a well done story. I haven’t read the book…yet. I sure want to now. Before we went to the movie, the Boys and I met my parents for lunch at a Thai restaurant. Yum!

In closing, my wish for you all in 2013 is that you all have prosperity, happiness and good health. I hope that you have everything you need, and that 2013 brings you opportunities for you to make your own excitement, and that no unwanted excitement lands on your doorstep. Blessings all!

 

Confessions of a Sunday morning slug


Another Sunday morning has arrived, and it seems like I was just here. The weeks have gone by so quickly, and I am finding myself trying to put on the breaks and make this lovely Sunday morning last a little while longer.

Enter cup of coffee #3. That’s right…I’m being a slug.  I do have quite a few things I need to do today, as they didn’t get done at any other time this week, but I just don’t feel like doing anything.

I’ve reached a sort of breaking point where I get stubborn about things that need to be done, which I don’t want to do.  Usually, I can get the lead out and get things going, but I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had time to breathe. The old bod is giving me the high sign that enough is enough, and I should just lay low.  I know I won’t for long, but it sure is tempting to just crawl into bed and close my eyes.

I think our culture has developed a bad habit of not having a season of rest. It’s probably not the same for all people and the jobs they have, but my job knows no quiet time. It’s busy all year round, and there is only busy and busier. Right now it’s the busiest I’ve known in a long time, at my happy little Cube Farm. I am lucky that it’s not been so busy at the Red Big Box store…I was gifted with getting a surprise day off yesterday as they are cutting hours.

Given that, you’d think that I would have had a chance to rest up and get some stuff done. Not so. There’s SO much going on that I just haven’t had as many nooks and crannies available to cram in things the way I normally would. Add on top of that the fact that September and October are always furiously busy times of the year anyway, plus trying to prepare for a trial this coming Friday, and life gets really interesting.

Yesterday morning I attended a deposition, which was an interesting experience. While I was not questioned, I got the opportunity to witness how my ex-husband’s lawyer operates, and I got to watch my lawyer in action. Even though I am in the middle of the situation, I have to say that this is an interesting process. Sometimes I try to stand outside myself a little just to really try to observe the process objectively…and mostly fail to be objective. Still, as much as this has been a terribly painful ordeal, I am morbidly fascinated by it. My attorney says I should go to law school. I think I’ll leave that to her and just keep my perch high up on the observer’s tree.

Speaking of perches, I saw three crows perched together the other day, which I took for a good omen. Yes, I do believe in omens, just like I believe in gut feelings. And, I like crows. Many people take them for being bad luck, but I like to have them around.

Last night I got to spend time with my Flirt, his sister and her husband. We went on a double date to the local casino and met their cousin. She was delightful. I played the penny slots, and we played several games of darts and pool.  We had a lovely time, and when we came home, I got to curl up with my sweetie and go to sleep. There’s nothing quite like the feeling you have when you go to sleep with your sweetheart’s arm wrapped around you. I slept well for the first time in two weeks.

Given that I watched my ex-husband’s deposed witness inadvertently poke holes in his case,  have had a good night’s sleep, and have consumed three cups of coffee, I have no good excuse not to get up and get something done. Time for a shower, some laundry, housework, and then go out to get my unruly hair cut. It promises to be a good day.

Sometimes just taking a few moments to think about the little blessings I come across makes all the difference. Having got those down on digital paper this morning, I feel better prepared to kick it down and get my day started. I keep telling myself I am only limited by what I am willing to imagine I can do, and today is no exception. In short, the sky is my limit, and there are no low hanging clouds today. Best get on with it!

Here’s hoping your sky is wide open with potential and possibility, and that your imagination runs wild with it. Brightest Autumn blessings to you all…

Love in the form of a brownie


Today has been one heck of a day. Of course, this time of year, everything is hectic…even the good stuff. In fact, this whole week has been one giant roller coaster, and there’s been much that’s bad, but so much that has been great.  I have several things to talk about, but not enough time or room to put them down here coherently, so I’ll just blather a bit about what’s happening right this moment.

It just so happens that I have a pan of freshly frosted brownies sitting on my stove. These aren’t just any brownies either…this is my Grandma’s recipe. Grandma knew all about how to feed people, and she delighted in it. The more you ate, the better she felt. It seems that cooking was her favorite way to show her love for us, and she did it well and often. Every time I went to visit, she always had a batch of these brownies waiting for me. She passed on in 1996, and now I have her recipe box and her cook books, including the one the brownie recipe came from. I’m almost ashamed to admit it, but I have not made this recipe in years. Today I made it because I have been invited over to my best friend’s house for an early Christmas celebration. Apparently “C” is a lover of brownies, and I instantly thought of this recipe.

The smell of these baking brought back a lot of memories, and I realized that I baked this particular recipe not only because it is just an excellent and easy recipe, but because I really do love these people and I wouldn’t take the time to make this favorite of mine for them if I didn’t.

As it turns out, the recipe book this comes from is so old, and the page is so beat up from use, that it’s falling apart. So, I’ll put the recipe down here for posterity, and to guard against losing it altogether. Because this brownie recipe is like a whole bunch of love packed into each little square, I encourage you all to make this for your loved ones who love chocolate too.

Grandma’s Famous Brownies

Beat together:
1/4 lb softened margarine

1 cup sugar

4 eggs (add two at a time and beat well)

1 tsp vanilla

1 lb can of Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup. (That’s right…get out your can opener and pour that whole sucker right in)

Once all is beaten together add:

1 cup, plus 1 Tbsp flour

1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Mix and pour into a 10×15 pan. Bake  for 30 minutes in an oven preheated to 350 degrees. While still hot, make the frosting:

Melt and stir together 6 Tbsp milk, 6 Tbsp margarine and 1 1/2 cups of sugar. Bring to a rolling boil and cook rapidly for 20 seconds. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 cup chocolate chips. Beat together until chips are melted and it’s ready to pour over brownies. If you still have lumps of chocolate, you can pour it through a sieve right onto the brownies. Spread it quickly as this frosting sets up fast.

Enjoy!

 

Life is full of little trade offs…The trick is to find balance.


As all of my Faithful Readers know, I have two jobs. I work at the Cube Farm by day, and The Big Box Store by night…the blue one. I think you know what I’m talking about.

Lately, I’ve had thoughts of defecting to The Other Big Box Store. The red one, with the bulls-eye.

I have a friend at The Cube Farm who has been talking to me about switching over, and I think I just might do it. I have to say, though, that I have been at The Blue Store for long enough that I’m comfortable there. The whole problem with that place is that it’s impossible to get your work scheduling straight, it’s disorganized, dirty and they have such a high turn over rate that there is never enough help. As a result of not ever having enough help, many of us “Floor Help” end up cashiering instead of keeping our departments straight. I hate cashiering, and my right elbow and wrist hate it too.

Every time I go to The Red Store I marvel at how clean it is, how every employee has a scanner to use and that things just seem to be more orderly in general. It’s so tempting to defect, but I would be giving up a lot of benefits I get at The Blue Store that wouldn’t be available to me at The Red Store. Hm…lots to ponder.

Life is full of all sorts of trade offs, and some have been very worthwhile. Let’s take last night for example.

I picked up The Flirt, and we went shopping last night. We bummed around the mall, just going from one store to another looking at stuff. At several points he grabbed my hand and held it as we walked.  Wow… have you got any idea how long it’s been since a man has picked my hand up and held it? Oh…many more than I can count.  That Flirt is full of all sorts of delightful surprises, and I’m looking forward to finding out what else he has up his sleeve.

So, what’s the trade-off?  I gave up time with my boys at home for the evening.

I think the whole trick is to find balance. Sunday evening The Flirt came over for pizza and movies, and we all had a good time. Hopefully I can find and maintain just the right balance, and not let my social life get the better of me.

I think we can do this… Well, I guess we’ll find out!

A bluff called back


Well…I thought calling someone else’s bluff was an exhilarating experience.

It almost doesn’t quite compare to having that call met, but also challenged.

Heh…

I never really thought feeling 14 again would ever be any fun. Apparently I was wrong!

The healing properties of calling a bluff


Let me just say upfront that I have been a very naughty Sparrow. I called someone’s bluff today, and it was a little bit more satisfying than I expected it would be, but not for the reason you may suspect.

You’ve heard me talk about The Flirt…my best friend’s brother. Well, the flirting has reached epic proportions, and after so long I finally called his bluff. We’ll see what he does about it, but that isn’t the important thing here really.

The important thing is that I have learned that I am not dead inside… and I was really convinced that I was. It’s also important that I learned how powerful a person I can be. And, that I can have fun with a man again. What a revelation.

It’s been an educational day.