Monday, December 27, 2010

I'm Leaving On A Jet Plane

That's right friends, I am leaving you all here in this snowy tundra and heading to the land of sunshine and green pastures--Pasadena, California.

Bet though you are wondering how the Keeper Christmas was?  So I'll style.

We baked...
lots of cookies...
then we got all dressed up for Jesus' birthday and went to church...
then came home for a yummy dinner with family...
where we were warm inside,
 the snow fell outside
while we sang "dreaming of a white Christmas" ...
and Princess A's sailor boy came with his day long hiccups; 
we tried every remedy to cure them...
(Didn't really think I was going to show off his good looks and tell stories of him? Nope not yet!) 
then in the night Santa came...
he stuffed the stockings too...
we gathered with more family where things got crazy...
all that fun is why I love my family!

Now if you will excuse me I have a few things to pack in my carry-on bag...
something tells me I'm in need of my sunglasses in California.

Saturday, December 25, 2010


The reason for the season.   
I have survived the stresses and the babe in the manger is the reason.
May your day be as blessed as our family's will be.
Merry  White Christmas!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Toss the Life Preserver

Don't mind me, the auto inflatable PFD vest I'm wearing under my apron is merely a safety precaution.  I feel like I'm starting to drown...okay, sinking a little.  I have so much to do. Still.  And. I need to beat the weather to get it all done. 

I don't anticipate any fire alarms, but just in case, I have my fire extinguisher close at hand.  The whistle is clinched between my teeth in case I need to summons the emergency response team--aka sleeping till noon teenagers.

I think I will catch my breath when everyone gathers around the dining room table Christmas Eve for a feast of holiday cheer. While they will be thinking meat, I'll be thinking something stiff on the rocks.

Or. Say. This.

Santa Hat Martini
1 part Malibu Rum

3 parts cranberry juice
grenadine for extra red color
dip rim of martini glass in powdered sugar/water solution
then roll glass in coconut
add mini candy cane to glass

Monday, December 20, 2010

Straight Jacket Needed

I am beginning to
with holiday and Tournament of Roses obligation anxiety! 

That's all I have to say today.

Saturday, December 18, 2010


We all were in training, pumping the muscle--fist to mouth with loads of sugared candy treats all week all day.  It's how Santa prepares to pull his sleigh...that jolly ole' elf knows a few things about speed so we took our pointers from him.  The big race was both exciting and sad; as it was the final Truman Reindeer Relay (next year Truman returns to a middle school).  To get the teams all reved up we were sung by a chorus of 860 screaming, ear drum piercing, joyful kids with this song:

The best team of course, without a doubt, was the Vixens. We stand to correct anyone who dares to challenge the claim. Whatever it is you may hear on the streets we were not cheaters.  We played fair and by the rules our own rules, collecting only one "present" at a time. The bag of coal we received for a prize was undoubtedly a prize of jealousy.  Look at us, who wouldn't feel threatened, we exude that vixen spirit and a ton of athleticism.

Now I know all you smarty pants out there are saying hey a vixen is a female fox so how did you get stuck with a dude on a team titled for the hot and luscious reindeer type?  Well, let me teach you a little something about having a trick up the ole' sleeve...a male fox is called a dog and that Vice Principal not only dons the elf costume like no one else can but he can run that wood floor gym like an Alaskan Malamute.  Besides being a "fox" knows no gender.  Wink, wink.

And so I present to you the highlights in a photographic story line.

The whistle blew and they were off...
then I lost balance on the shotty scooter they try to pass off as a Santa sleigh...
 Dr. Todd the VP and Vixen Rachel show the rest of the reindeers
how to style while racing--
elf suit for one and Coach furry boats for another...
Vixen Barb and I take a second run on the course
 to collect just three one of Santa's gifts...
anyone have a rubber chicken on their Christmas list?
Some crazy third and fourth grade teachers, who shall remain unnamed Jane and Teri  
will need to get an eye exam over the holidays...or quit playing favorites with the lists. 
Listing me first on this ridiculous display of envy is a big old pile of reindeer poop!...
what kind of relay requires walking not running? 
The bag of coal wasn't even worth photographing.
Scribes of the list I warn...don't close your eyes or turn your backs,
you never know who might be behind you.
Santa Claus!
Checking his list.
Checking it twice.
Gonna find the two who are naughty not nice.  

Commencing with a 16 day break. Aaaaahhh!

Days till Christmas: 7
Days till we leave for the Tournament of Roses: 9
Days till I start freaking out on all I have left to do for Christmas: 0   

Friday, December 17, 2010

Another Adult In The House, So Light the Candles

Why can't Keeper sleep?
A. She is excited for the big race
B. King Ralph turned on his side of bed heater and is cooking Keeper to death
C.  The anniversary of giving birth to M has her mind stirring with memories
D. All of the above

I'm gonna go with answer "D". 

Answer "C" is probably really up there! Totally up there!!  This isn't any birthday, it's M's 18th birthday.  The year where she is granted privileges by law that will allow any of us to holler out hey M pick up a few lottery tickets on the way home tonight.  Or, hey M pick up so and so a pack of smokes on the way over tonight.  Even better, hey M pick up the latest issue of Playboy--so and so likes it, really, for the articles.  Oh course we all know the chance of M being allowed to picking anything up other than a lottery ticket for someone is slim to NONE!    

More importantly turning 18 means M has the right to vote...even join the military (to bad she keeps turning down all those military recruiter calls).   

Some how though, even being 18 and having had the privilege to watch her grow into a beautiful confident young lady...I still see the lovable little brown haired brown eyed girl who when asked "where are your glasses?" would shrug her tiny shoulders and reply "I nun no"  (the joys of having spectacles at 18 months). 


Thursday, December 16, 2010

In Training

They gave us the day off school today, they say it is because of the thin layer of ice that is covering the roads.  However, I think, it's because they wanted me to get in some last minute hard core training before tomorrow's big race. 

So excuse me for not blogging more but I have aerobic exercise to get happening.

See you sometime may be late since I am sure there will be a celebration to honor the winners.  

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Another 15 Seconds of Fame

In case you are wondering what is going on around our castle...we met the sailor last night, he came for dinner.  Oops did I say that?  I did.  I guess in time I will divulge more. Not just yet.  But, here's what I really came to say is happening around the castle...or when M leaves the castle for the day.

To my pal who can give me the exact mark on the timer where you can see M spinning her flag--I'll buy a coffee or hot cocoa at Starbuck's.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Joy Of Giving Is Expecting Nothing Back In Return.

I was an elf this morning.  In the briefness of my elfhood I was privileged to witness a few Christmas miracles.  The occasions of anonymity I saw humans who were humbled and awe struck with gratitude.  As difficult as it is to see people who never before have been in a state of needed help; it is spirit filling at this season of Christmas that lessons of sharing and caring present.  Cars filled to the brim, some needing to make several trips to transport all the collected goods.  It warms the soul.  Fills the heart.    


There is always that one.  The mom who not long ago told their child that Christmas would not grace the home this year.  When presented with a bag of wrapped gifts, a second bag heaped with the treats for a perfect Christmas stocking, an envelope with gift cards, along with a few other neccessaries....   That one receiver who is thankful to tears.  Whose gratitude hardly needs words because it is seen in the eyes and is the one who cannot stop saying "thank you".      

It's that one that makes the job--worth it!
So when I made a quick run to Walgreens, the wind whipping and the air with its frigid bite...I scrapped every last bit of loose change from the bottom of my purse dropping it in the red kettle.  I usually grab whatever change I can, no digging, just a fast grab.  Tonight though I decided with my heart filled with the day's memory that I couldn't just make it a fast grab.  Sometimes...

The joy of giving is expecting nothing back in return.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

There Is A Miracle on 34th Street

It happens every year.  Every year I dread it.  The dreaded question.  It isn't so much the question I dread it is the fact that others can't ssshhhh, keep there mouths closed.  I sort of understand when it happens with fifth graders...but second breaks my heart.

Here's my true story

Mrs. Avery is waved over to the lunch table

Second Grader #1: Ask her, go head and ask her.

Me: Ask me what?

Second Grader #2: Mrs Avery, is Santa real?

Me: Yes, most definitely, he is real!

Second Grader #3: Do you believe?

Me: Of course I believe.  Every year I wake up and under my tree are lots of presents.

Second Grader #1: See I told.  Tommy (name changed to protect identity) was wrong.  He told us Santa isn't real.

Second Grader #2: See guys out of 179 people 1 does not believe.

Me: No boys more like 1 in a 1,000,000,000 do not believe.  But I BELIEVE!

Then Mrs. Avery corners the lad who is breaking spirits and stomping on the magic of Christmas

Me: Tommy. Whatever your feelings are about Christmas you need to keep them to yourself.  Do you understand what I am saying? We aren't going to talk Christmas feelings at lunch.

Tommmy looks up in a sheepish style.

Me: Okay Tommy?

Tommy: Yes.

The little turd knew exactly what I was talking about. 

Of course it happened again, the next day, at fifth grade lunch.  This time I was sitting at the table across from the kid who was in the mood be a spirit killer.  I gave him a kick under the table to hush him.  Even though he tried again to profess his knowledge that Santa does not exist, another lad swore he had proof on video of the jolly ole' elf in his red "costume" --to which I proclaimed it to be a "uniform"-- he was prepared to present as proof.

So to all these nay sayers I say too is a true story:

"DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old.
"Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
"Papa says, 'If you see it in THE SUN it's so.'
"Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?


VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except [what] they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.


Christmas Countdown: 16 Days

Till my suitcase has to be placed
on a truck bound for Pasadena: 14 Days 

Take Off to the Tournament of Roses: 18 Days

(I may be nearly naked for 4 days,
but we'll talk about that on the 22nd)

Tuesday, December 07, 2010


Who decorates your house? 

Okay, that is a silly question for me, because when I'm talking about decorating inside our abode an all-women affair.  At Keeper's Castle King Ralph just sits and trys to direct from his La-Z-Boy thrown.  In our 24 years he still hasn't learned no one cares what he thinks when it comes to holiday decorating... all we care is that he drags the beastly tree from the basement to the upstairs.  

I think if I left the decorating and tree up to King Ralph we might end up with something that looks like this.

In case you have a bubba of a hubby who wants to
spend his free time constructing this beauty--
 I offer you these instructions.   

Now you want to know who decorates the outside of the castle? 

That's not a silly question.
Our slaves.
I mean the children.
We're aiming to raise independant women.
Clean the gutters while you're up there.
And they did!

That's Princess A in the babooshka acting like King Ralph-- directing from the background. 
 But don't you worry M doesn't take any of that older sister bossy crap. 

D just stays grounded and feeds the strands up to the roof.  

Now like I've said before-- whoever doesn't believe in child labor hasn't had kids.  


Christmas Countdown: 17 Days
Take off  to the Tournament of Roses : 19 Days

Monday, December 06, 2010

Mondo Meat Pie

My little brother and I made plans to do a bit of Christmas shopping together.  He needs my help when shopping for his three stylish nieces.  We decided tonight was a good night to order that BIG pizza he has been dying to order.  When he picked up the BIG pizza, the pizza guy wanted to know what he was driving.  The BIG pizza would not fit in a Smart car, or even a Ford Focus...this bad boy needed the bed of a truck.  It also comes out the back door, it won't fit through the front door.
D put her hand in the picture so you can get a feel for the thirty inches of brick oven pizza-deliciousness.  This bad boy did not come sliced.  It was a work out slicing the half sausage half everything pizza.  It induces song.

When the moon hits you eye like a big pizza pie
That's amore
When the world seems to shine like you've had too much wine
That's amore
Bells will ring ting-a-ling-a-ling, ting-a-ling-a-ling
And you'll sing "Vita bella"
Hearts will play tippy-tippy-tay, tippy-tippy-tay
Like a gay tarantella

No one was a gay tarantella.  No happy dancers instead...

BEWARE--a pizza this size causes gas. 
Not in women but in forty year old brothers.First brother dropped his bomb in my beautiful new truck, in which the windows needed to be rolled down to let the 20* frigid air purge the cabin. Then while I was digging for my keys on a mall bench I was left in a cloud of toxic fumes as a giggly brother left me suffocating as old men where dropping to the floor right in front of me.  So beware when ordering a fifty pound pizza.  Why is it men have no problem cutting the cheese in public?  Not to mention think it is funny? 

Once I got my oxygen levels restored we headed to Target: the momdom of shopping mecas,where I purchased these holiday delights for myself.
It is a puppet show on my feet.  I perform Santa Claus is Coming to Town and Jolly Old St. Nicholas.  You know who doesn't like my Kris Kringle feet? The dog!  Uli went on the attack.  Then Santa scolded Uli and reminded her who brings her giant meaty treat on December 25--she backed off.

Okay my Santa feet are scurrying to the medicine cabinet for a couple of Tums to calm the effects of the BIG pizza pie and call it a night.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

The Great Wiener Trade

As I approached the doors of the ticket area of the theater I saw one of M's besties hard at work collecting the canned goods.  She waved to me through the window.  I waved back.  Then I flung open the door and dropped my box flat on the table, "TWENTY FIVE CANS OF WIENERS" I exclaimed. M's bestie laughed at me.  She knows I am crazy.  "Anyone else bring in wieners?" I asked.  "No" she replied.  "Well my wieners will go good with someones corn" and the bestie just laughs at me again.  You know the word wieners makes for laughter. Wieners.  See you're laughing aren't you?  Wieners. I think I just might like saying that darn word.

Friends, there is nothing like Vienna Sausages from Aldi's at .37 a can.  Mmmmmm processed meat rolls in life preserving liquid. Yum-yum, not. GROSS!  But like King Ralph said, the wieners will go best with a can of pork-n-beans. Beans-n-wienies, a meal full of protein...a protein packed food bank jackpot.  Turns out that by the time our movie ended and I checked with the bestie to see if any other canned wieners had been donated--we were the only wiener donors for the day. Great minds sometimes think alone.

Now what did those twenty five cans of wieners get us?  Four tickets to see this great movie:

127 Hours is worth the see!  A movie that really gets you thinking.  Thinking about what you may not realize you are capable of when in a situation.  It also made me to turn to M as we exited the theater to say that all the stuff we double up on or think is ridiculous that King Ralph insists we pack in our backpacks when we hike...well that stuff doesn't seem all that silly after watching this movie.  Although we aren't out hiking alone, we have certainly hiked in remote areas where passing a fellow hiker is far and few between.  

Princess A had the pleasure of hearing Aron Ralston speak at Southeast Missouri State last year when she was attending the university.  She said of all the lectures she attended, Aron Ralston's was the best.  His story was gripping even from behind the podium.  To bad she had a Saturday afternoon exam and didn't get to enjoy the Cans Food Festival with us.  

So I encourage you to smuggle your Diet Coke and peanut M&M's in your purse--just like me--and hop on over to your local theater.  (We'll talk about the popcorn heist another day.)          

Friday, December 03, 2010

Tomorrow I am attending the...

Tonight, however, I am going on a
dinner date with King Ralph.   

Friday, November 26, 2010

For Dessert Pumpkin Pie With Whipped Cream. But First...

There is nothing like an early start to Thanksgiving--530am. 
 A start that did not summons to stuff a turkey bird in the oven...
instead to dress girls in uniforms for a parade down St. Louis' Market Street.  

The one and only time I have been to the Thanksgiving Day "Christmas in St. Louis" parade was in 2004 when Princess A marched.  Back in 2004 it was beautiful day.
In 2010 it will be remembered as a dreary-cold-windy-rainy day.
And the band marches on.

No one complains as we watch our favorite band take to the pavement--
where they placed fourth in the competition
with the bonus of outstanding drum major and percussion. 

Well M did moan a tad about how hard holding a flag pole can be 
as the wind attempts to take it sailing from her hands. 
 She fought back and kept a hold. 

      For just a little while the weather calmed and we were all smiles watching

There is only one other person in the world who would enjoy watching the popper scoopers in the parade more than me and my pal Terri...and that's Nellie

 I wonder how one gets this prestigious job? 
Do you volunteer? 
Are you appointed? 
Maybe it's a punishment for being a crappy (no pun intended) employee...
or are those criminals serving community service--those are the police mounty.
 Nothing says Happy Thanksgiving like a good shovel and a 1.5 mile walk whiffing horse dung. 
Try being placed next to those guys at dinner--no thank you! 

Where else in the world can you go to see Clifford the Big Red Dog all stretched out in a sexy center fold pose looking more like a wiener dog than a bloodhound?
  I'm guessing no where!
 Only in St. Louis.

Thirsty for some hot chocolate?
 There was this kid whose parents made him dress like a penguin and a bill board peddling beverage screaming no figgy pudding for you till you sell the hot cocoa

      Ha kid we have our own hot chocolate--and it's spiked.

Next time you go grocery shopping you may want to consider this cart as an option.

As the balloons began to mimic in the rain and wind an episode of Sanford and Son, with an echo of Fred saying "it's the big one" as they were going down--we decided to bolt. 

I know you are thinking before Santa's appearance and the snow? 
But bolt we did! 

Got all cleaned up and looking good...  

where we went over the river and through the woods [and snow]--literally.

For this:    
Aaaahhhh the proverbial turkey shot.

Now that I have paid homage to the turkey. 
It's time to begin the next season:

Commencing with tuning the radio to constant Christmas tunes.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Horn of Plenty

Usually I spend the weekend and the weekdays prior to Thanksgiving stressed as I scribble and scratch my menu and grocery list. Shop and beat folks down the isles and around the turkey case, as the perfect bird is lifted to the cart.  I unearth special dishes and polish the tarish off the silverware.  I set the table.  Arrange the vases with a mix of Fall flowers.  I chop, mix, brine and bake.  The house fills with the aroma only Thanksgiving offers up--nutmeg, sage, thyme, rosemary....

Except this year.

This year King Ralph's cousin and his wife decided they wanted a turn at hosting the family feast.  Who was I to arrgue the offer.  As much as I am finding a measure of relief from the always welcomed stress that hosting can be--it seems I am beginning to miss that stress.  I love stretching the table from one end of the Great room to the other while collecting every dining chair I can rummage up in the house.  Filling the house with aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents, gorging on a feast of foods and laughing through a night of games...aaaaahhhh horn of plenty.

Keeper's castle kitchen is silenced this year.  The oven is cool. Still my horn of plenty runneth over.  And. So. I present, the annual list of thanks. My list can be rearranged in order of listing with the exception of one and two.

1. God
2. Family
3. Dog
4. Friends
5. Laughter
6. Job
7. Medial insurance
8. Health
9. My new truck
10. fresh laundry
11. tears of joy
12. tears of pride
13. football games
14. marching bands
15. a good movie
16. sunny days on the playground
17. mountain hikes
18. campfires
19. classic rock music
20. a good pillow
21. bandwiches
22. parades
23. trivia nights
24. ice cream
25. Milky Ways
26. Flip Video camera
27.  a new razor to shave my legs
28. shampoo in my shower
29. toilet paper on the roller
30. TIVO and DVR
31. Glee
32. show choir
33. neighbors
34. new rental neighbors who mow the lawn
35. pumpkin pie
36. good books
37. Tostita Roasted Garlic and Black Bean chips
38. Rack-o
39. Yahtzee
40. clean sheets
41. ice water w/ a slice of lemon
42. Snuggle bamboo silk and blue iris fabric softner
43. my laptop
44. my camera
45. skin kissed by the sun
46. menstral cycle free months
47. hair color
48. Cardinal baseball
49. Project Runway
50. Prop L passing
51. Good doctors
52. teachers who teach with passion
53. motorcycle rides with the spousal unit
54. raked yard
55. drive-in movie gatherings
56. flip flops
57. good choices teenagers make
58. vacations in the camper
59. power naps

And the list goes on and on....

I hope your horn of plenty is as plentiful a harvest as mine.

Now if you don't mind I have a parade to get to, so I can burrrrrr freeze my turkey tail off watching.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

On The Eve of Thanks

I just worshipped with my daughters was the best service at church in a long while.  We worshipped with two other churches of different denominations.  Such a presence of thankfulness in a shared God instead of division by chosen faith practice.  The sermon reminded us all "to be thankful for what is".  I am thankful!  So while I take the time to list the things big and small that offer and bring blessing a plenty--I leave you with this tune to inspire you as you make your list...or reflect upon.

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Family That Lives Together Works Together

Or is it that I should I title this entry as...

The unearthing of a mine field of dog crap. 


It's fun to watch D dry heave while carrying a sack of crap as big as Santa's satchel


Uli is a genius dog who was cultivating a fertilizer company.


The dog track is open--clear and free of leaves.


Whoever said child labor is wrong never had children of their own.


Or is it... Glad those new rental neighbors are better than the old ones and rake their leaves.


That girl can work a gas powered machine.

 I think we are going to stick with the original.  A FAMILY THAT LIVES TOGETHER WORKS TOGETHER and laughs while doing the evil chore of Fall--raking the yard.  

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Coming To A Mailbox Near You

Me: Hey King Ralph, we snapped a few Christmas card photos today.  Wanna see?

KR: Sure.

Me: There's these, pretty girls....

KR: Oh I like.

Me: and these, silly girls. The girls want silly girls on the card.

KR: I don't like. 

Me: To bad dude! 

Really since when does the only man in the house get any say in how to create the Christmas cards--NEVER!  Now if he aggravated himself with years of moans from girls about how to fix hair and what to wear...if he ordered the cards, addressed and stamped the seventy-five cards, fought the post office parking lot to mail'em all...well, then, maybe.  But still, probably not. 

I toiled between which silly photo to use. 
This craziness was a close contender.
I thought folks might think that snarly beast in the middle, known as Princess A
riped D's hands off  leaving her with just wrists.  
I wonder if you can guess who in trio plays the jester at home?

In the end I decided to go with the original crazy shot.
Because gosh damnit I want to be real this year.
Showing off their beauty and brains.
Which shows the brains are a lil' crazed.

Here you have it: finished product. 

 The only thing that could have made the card even better is if the doghter
would have paused from her backyard lap race to join in the fun. 
 Oh well, maybe next year. 

Enough with's time to show a bit of respect to the turkey this week. 
HAIL TO THE TURKEY!  May he be pardoned only to my table [and plate] on Thursday. 

Saturday, November 20, 2010

This Just Might End Up On The Christmas Card

Because aren't cards suppose to say-- hey friends this is how life in our house is? 

  Instead of presenting life with two teens and a twenty year old as all: calm and serene.

Truth is--I love life in photo number one.
It's never boring, that's for sure!
 I wouldn't have it any other way!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Playground Talk, Now Let's Eat

One can hear the darndest things out on the playground.  Sometimes you don't even have to stretch an ear to hear, the kids come right up to tell you.  Today was no exception. 

Girl: Mrs. Avery my mom won't let me wear my Guiness shoes anymore.

Me: Really? Why?

Girl: 'Cause it's to cold out now.

Friend: What are Guiness shoes?

Girl: My beer flip flops.

Me: I don't really think you should be wearing beer shoes to the fourth grade anyway.

Girl: I thought they said "genius" when I bought them...I can't read.

That is when I thought but your mom can.

As long as we are talking beer here is a recipe I tried out tonight.  I got it from a high school classmate of mine. Everyone but one in the family liked it.  You know what  I say to that one...make yourself a dam PBJ then.  

Pork Chili

4 lbs picnic/shoulder roast
1 onion, coarsely chopped
1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
3 (15 ounce) cans black beans not drained
(16 ounce) jar salsa
2 cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 can rotel with diced chilies
Juice of one lime
Chopped garlic, cilantro, crushed red pepper flakes and 2 beers *Budweiser's (use what you are comfortable with)
Frozen corn 2 cups? Whatever you want….

Dump it all in crock pot (except for corn and cilantro) cook 7 hours on low. Pull pork out, shred add it back add corn and cilantro cook 2 more hours. Serve over cilantro lime rice.

Rice is 2 cups long grain rice to 4 cups water. When rice is cooked add juice of one lime and a half cup of chopped cilantro. Mix.

Here's my finished product (crappy picture taken with my phone)
Question is...does mine look like Sally's?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sure We Came In Fifth Place But We Laughed Till We Cried

$50 a couple for DECA trivia, that included dinner and an open bar
$10 worth of mulligans, which we clearly needed
$1 for "heads or tails" and being in the final four
$0 to play the scavenger hunt during trivia and our team being in the final two, losing to the guy who produced a grocery list from his wife's purse
$10 worth 50/50 raffle tickets, the team agreeing if one of us won we would split the winnings--we did!
My sister-in-law bidding on $300 worth of auction items under her husband's name without his knowledge and the look on his face when they kept calling his name--PRICELESS!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Flyers of Fall

All the hype I've been feeding that marching band had come to an end... I kept getting all farklempted that the end had come...liar, liar pants on fire.  The season continues.  I keep on dressing the color guard. Washing uniforms. Why?  Because of the boys of fall.  The boys keep winning and the band keeps on playing. The green and gold is a force to be reckoned with on the field.  Friday Nights Lights is hitting the road for another big game.   So boys this ones for you.

Good luck and stay warm.  I'll be cheering from the comfort of my house listening to the play by play on prepcast.  Boys if you win tonight I promise to support in person next week at Flyers Stadium--the home field.

Go Lindbergh!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Simply Titled--Veteran's Day

Something most everyone knows is that King Ralph is a police lieutenant.  Something most people don't know is that I keep one dirty white undershirt of his at all times.  I started this years and years ago when a rash of suburban police officers' lives were being taken in the line of duty.  In my young married years I was naive to the idea that King Ralph's life could ever be in much danger--the bullet proof vest was just a fashion accessory worn to induce sweat.  He works in a white-suburban-cookie-cutter-community, so what could ever go wrong. Right? Wrong!  Crime knows no boundaries.  Crime doesn't care if you live and work in the inner city or in an affluent community.  It was when officers in suburban communities were losing their lives to senseless crime that I wanted to be prepared in case the scent of my spouse would be stolen from me.  I want to be prepared to smell that musk like deodorant that clings to the cotton fibers that is, his, scent.  And. So. One dirty T-shirt at all times it is.

Monday night the school district put on the Annual Veteran's Day concert that supports the Backstopper's; an organization that assists families of fallen police, firefighters and EMS workers.  A troop of color guard girls clad in green velvet welcomed veterans and district residents.  An orchestra played.  The elementary school aged choir singing patriotic tunes in voices that sweetly struggle to increase volume and turn to slight shouts.  Innocent cuteness.  There was the high school acapella choir whose voices sounded like a symphony of angels--so beautiful words hardly describe.  There was the marching band who flooded the auditorium playing "God Bless America", followed by a medley of the armed forces theme songs.  With each branch's song that was played the veterans [and active duty] in the auditorium were asked to stand and be recognized, honored.  The Navy grabbed prize for the branch best represented.  Then I noticed, what we all do, I am sure, that there is an unspoken brotherhood among our WWII veterans.  As the band played Anchors Aweigh men in there eighties, strangers to one another turned, reaching rows apart to shake hands--a bond of brotherhood that only their hearts understand but we appreciate.  It leaves me asking why the Generation X'ers can't have that same kind of military brotherhood?  The evening ended remembering the men and women that the Backstopper's exists for as a police department's bagpipers played Amazing Grace.

Those names scrolling past remind me why I keep that single piece of dirty laundry.  In some ways I like to think as long as that t-shirt is there full of its musk scent-- life is safe.

Who knows there may be a wife whose spouse is serving our country right now who also has a fabric of clothing laced with a familiar scent.   What else is there say to that thought, except-- thank you, thank you for honoring our nation and protecting our freedoms.   

Heroes of different kind, yet both with the common goal to protect and serve, honored.                 

Thursday, November 04, 2010


Rapunzel ,Rapunzel let your hair down.

Last time I saw a Disney animated movie that totally captured my heart and left me in Disney love, was when Princess A was 20 months old. (Not saying I haven't seen some really good animated features since then, because I have.)   It was her first movie in a theater--Beauty and the Beast.  Princess A sat so entranced by every second of the movie it was hard to tell between the 20-month old and the adults in the theater.

Until tonight...

I scored some sneak peek tickets at work, compliments of Radio Disney, to see Disney's new movie Tangled.  It was Disney love all over again!  The theater was jam packed full of kids.  It has been a long time since I have sat amongst that many small people enjoying a movie.  Hearing the sweet sound of children's laughter sprung me back in time...remembering how M could always find humor in movies even when others couldn't.  Even with the infectious laughter of wee-ones, Tangled's humor isn't hard to find.  It is brimming with the perfect dose of slap stick.  Mandy Moore's voice is a captivating song bird leaving you to rush home to buy the Tangled CD.  Of course, like any good Disney animated movie there is the handsome hero Flynn Rider and the evil sinister Mother Gothel.  The message of believing in yourself, reaching for your dreams, never holding back or giving up is played out in the most perfectly beautiful way that the smallest of children and the children at heart can totally understand.  Disney magic at its best.  

If you want my suggestion for which dessert you should pick on Thanksgiving...I'm going to suggest a serving of Tangled--coming to theaters November 24.            

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Pilgrim Pride

Flash back to Sunday. The TV was still brimming with commercials dedicated to costumed ghouls (and I don't mean politicians running for office tooting there own horn while they slaughter there opponent with forked tongue) eating Reese's peanut butter cups.  Then came November 1.  The commercials are (still chock-full of nasty politicians) bursting of elves creating magic and vision of sugar plums are being planted in children's heads and Overstock dot com sings parents into an Internet shopping trance.  Walgreen's has the holiday isle battling it out--one side is the fifty percent off Halloween leftovers while the other side is stacked with red and green candies, jingle bells, stuffed Santa's and reindeer.

Screeching halt here folks.

What about the turkey?

Does the turkey get no respect?

I mean it's the pilgrim who paved the way for this country to have a day of costumes and sugar overdose.  A day for the man in the red suit to stake claim to the month of December.  So tell me why can't the TV media pedal me Stove Top stuffing and Ocean Spray cranberries.  Campbell's whore the green bean casserole topped with French's french fried onions.  Why can't Butterball give me a dancing turkey table top or a pilgrim sailing on a Norelco razor?  Macy's saves Santa for the end of the parade-- they don't appoint him Grand Marshall making appearance at the lead off.

While the candidates for the Missouri senate polish their axes and daggers for a battle for blood-- known as 'the election"...I'm taking it to the mattresses for the turkey. I will demand Mr. Turkey rein supreme for just the first two weeks of November before I am choked with everything Christmas. I love Christmas, I do I do, its just....

So as soon as I return from my polling place my campaign for the turkey will be waged.       

I heart turkey.  I've got Pilgrim pride!

Be scared Christmas. Be scared.


Off my soap box, on a side note-- I just wanna say

Jodi has voted in the election