Thursday, May 29, 2008

Food balance

I've been trying to make sense of my addiction to sweets lately. I know that it is partly coming from losing a bunch of fat because I'm not eating meat anymore. And I know that there is more to being pre-diabetic than eating jelly beans. So I'm going to try to journal my eating for 1 week (Friday to Friday) and see what happens. Honestly, I think I eat pretty well, other than the night time smackeral.

So in my search to figure this out, this is the best guide I've come up with online to help me figure out what I should be eating (and to best give my kids a balanced diet).

It's technically vegan, which I'm not (because we eat eggs, and Beca eats dairy, to boot!), but it doesn't count meat as a protein, and it doesn't depend on dairy for calcium. This is what I was searching for.

Tonight I prepped a totally yumm stir fry w/Quorn bits, including a full head of kale, 1/4 head of cabbage, carrots, onions, garlic, and spices. EVERYONE munched it right down.

Tomorrow I'm going to make challah bread and a very basic Minestrone soup. I have tons to put in it, shells, peas, Great Northern beans, black beans, spinach, loads of tomatoes, and I'll have to run to the store and get some fruit for the cast party tomorrow night anyway, so I'll get some asparagus (really ticks me off that I have to drive 7 extra miles (20 min!) to get fresh organic asparagus, when it's ripe and ready but all the supermarkets carry is frozen organic (at 4.99 a bag!), or fresh conventional - and not even from local farms!).

Maybe this weekend I'll do another Shepard's pie, the last one was pretty well received. I think making them a bit smaller, tastier (not necessarily spicier though!), and with fresh bread will help us get more accustomed to them. Then on Sunday maybe something with the last of the veggies, so that on Monday I can justify going to the co-op for fresh veg!

Three more weeks until our CSA starts! I am really seriously looking forward to it!

Beca's The Tempest was wonderful today ... the 1/2 that I got to see! Hayley is Caliban in her performance, and she was so convincing that she scared Ori, so we left Act 3 Scene 3. Oh well - it leaves something to look forward to for tomorrow, since I get to go back again for the 2nd performance (and chaperon the cast party). The kids did a great job w/their lines (mostly), the costumes were totally great (pics tomorrow), and the props were excellent! Now if they'd just learn to slow down and enunciate...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Iiiiiii Love a Parade

Being in a parade is such an experience, different from watching one in some very powerful ways. Firstly, watching a parade is the stuff of spectator sport. Like watching ping pong, or tennis, your neck cranes this way or that, w/out ever really getting anything more than a subtle satisfaction that you got to see that amazing play, or save, or rebound. Watching the people in the parade who march, giggle, toss candy to children, and wave (yes, oh yes, lots of waving!), play instruments, give karate demonstrations, drive miniature cars, firetrucks, and soapbox derby cars is fun. But BEING in a parade, it's a whole nuther kind of butter!

Beca has always been in the parade. This year, when we got home, she said she'd rather watch next year (and get candy), 'cause everyone else always gets to be aspectator and get lots of candy. I told her we'd talk about it next year.

Meanwhile, Ori got to be in it for the first time this year!

He had a wonderful time eating candy, gave out bunches to both old and young, and sat in the wagon and waved waved waved. At one point he started to cry, and I picked him up and asked 'what's going on?' and he said "my arm is so tired!" "from waving?" "yes, mama. From too much waving!" So, with permission to ride and NOT wave, he was happily back in the wagon and chomping on his candy necklace.

Ah - here is the honor guard (seen from the back, unfortunately). Senator Breslin, our town supervisor, and a sprinkling of other dignitaries, as well as some local cops. Thanks for showing up, fellas! It was cool to have someone respect our walk (although the crowd appreciates it, I'm not sure the word respect would have crossed their minds.), wave us 'done' and just be there for all the kids to ogle and awe at.

And yes, note that gas is WAY more than the national average of $3.91. And has been for a while.

Ahhh, I love a little town pride!

These guys are my very fave. To me, they represent 250+ years of Americana. They are proud and strong (gotta be to wear those costumes in 80 degree weather!), but not boastful, loud w/out being noisome. I love fifes, just really love them. Can't play one, but love to listen (same goes for bagpipes).So to me, seeing some old guys drive little cars, listening to the fife, tossing around some candy, and lots of waving is a successful parade. Memorializtion? Not much, but I respect the pomp and appreciate the circumstance.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

May MBOY and maybe a little more...

May is nearly over, and I FINALLY got around to dyeing my BFL yarn (from that coop so many moons ago) that I have wanted to do ooooh, probably since I got the darned stuff! It's beautiful yarn, very soft and a nice tight twist, singly ply but thickly stranded. Mmmmm. So I broke out the kool-ade and attempted to do a two tone UN pink red, but no luck. Perhaps strawberry gives a better red? I stuck this stuff in the cherry for over 4 hours! Here's the stew:

And here's a hank drying (note: after stewing for 4+ hours, the color was NOT what I was intending, but most of the beautiful buttery yellow is now gone...sigh):

And HERE'S the teaser pic of the ball!

Overall, I'm happy with the yarn, I do wish it had turned out a much deeper red - but perhaps the recipient wanted a lighter color? Or the Universe wanted her to have a lighter color? I had a lot of fun picking little goodies to go inside, some showing more obviously than others. At the core of this ball is something veeeery special, locally made, and totally delish. :D

So having gotten all that together (sans the Spring ed. of Interweave Knits which has slipped from my grasp - so tomorrow (after the parade) I shall endeavor to find it), I was feeling completely entitled to opening MY incoming Mboy! I am SO glad I did! Aside from the new sock dpn's, the foot balm, the lip and knitter's balms, the mini soap, and the awesome little card, I got a knitting bag (a small, wrist bag hand made to tote a single skein/ball of yarn around, instead of the whole kit and kaboodle I have trouble with!) and a ball of the MOST gorgeous Blckberry Ridge Mill yarn. I am SO excited to do something wonderful with it! My FAVORITE colors!!! Thank you ~Megan~!!

And as usual, a gratutious pic of at least one of my babies.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Newest bestest food

Tonight I made a delicious pot pie - truly awesome!


7 medium gold potatoes, boiled to tender, smashed, a couple tablespoons of Earth's Best
1 large or 2 medium leeks
2 normal carrots
1/2 small pkg petite peas
nice big bunch of fresh or frozen cut spinach (I think I used about 3.5 big handfulls, stems removed).
diced or crushed garlic (2 cloves or more to desired taste)
1 medium onion diced

1 tsp. garam marsala paste
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp tumeric
couple good dashes of vegan Worcestershire sauce
pinch of salt
pinch of good ground pepper

2 pie crusts (mine were store bought vegan)

Get a pie plate or large shallow bowl and line it with one of the pie crusts. Brush with Earth's Best.

Saute the onion, leek, garlic, spinach, and spices together - adding them together in that order about 2-3 min apart. Dash in the Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper.

Add this saute to the potatoes, and mix well. Add in the cooked carrots and frozen peas. Mix a few times so that it's well mixed, but not smashing apart the carrots or peas. Add to pie crust. Brush again with Earth's Best, and add top pie crust. Cut little holes in the pie right in the middle, so you are impressed with how it looks. Bake at 350 for about 45 min. We ate ours plain, but you could do a side of beans, or have it with a nice salad or soup.

Just wanted to add here that after eating one serving of this yummy pie, and having a glass of chocolate rice milk with dinner, I had 3 thin mint cookies and was totally fine. 2 glasses of water later, and I'm ready for bed! It's really getting easier...

Friday, May 16, 2008

New Stuff

I am loving some new websites I've visited.

This one Jessi led me to - it's really very cute and great for the 8-15yos who are getting a lot of info and not a lot of facts.

This one is from the Smithsonian, and you can build a panda habitat, among other activities!

This one, from PBS.COM is amazing, and the pictures are so beautiful my kids will hang out w/me and watch the vids for 30+min w/out fighting, fidgiting, or fooling around!

The EWG is an amazing group that has produced more DATA than anyone else (in a readable and manageable format). Their site is chock-a-full of info for the every day person, scientist, shopper and large scale purchaser. This page is wonderful for me, I use it at least once a week before I make purchases!

I'm sure there are many more, that should be enough if you are just browsing around with some time on your hands (who has more time than that?!).

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Something Fun

Your fairy is called Gossamer Moontree
She is the moon goddess's messenger.
She lives in spiderwebbed wonderlands and insect grottos.
She is only seen when the first leaves fall from the trees.
She wears tiny black spiders on her dresses. She has beautiful blue butterfly wings.

and my Elvish self is LĂșthien Felagund from this site.

And a Hobbit name generator here! I'm Rosie-Posie Bunce of Brockenborings. Nice to meet ya!

Question: why doesn't blogger have smilies we can use?

Monday, May 12, 2008

Mother's Day weekend update

I want to start with this, because it's so wonderful. There are a lot of these kind of links around, this one uses some reggae music, which is always so empowering lol! It's about 6 min, so if that's too long for you right now, feel free to skip it for the moment. I'll leave the linkee up for you. ;-)

Next on to congratulations to my friends Heidi and Martin and Iris, for their impending move to Sweden!! They are taking a leap of faith in many ways, but pictures of their adventure (including their new home!) are so enticing, I can certainly see how they'd flee our flailing economy, poor political arena, and lagging health care system to go catch babies and explore in Sweden! CONGRATULATIONS!! I'm starting a savings account to come visit, guys!

And now on to JAC and his progress. Well, I haven't posted much because there isn't much to post. The surgery was Friday, and it went as well as could be expected, said the Dr. who did the surgery (Czajka - pronounced CHAI-KA). There was a lot of blood and tissue he had to flush from the wound site, and he had to snip a bit more of the muscle to get a clean attachment, but no other complications, which is VERY good. JAC was in pretty good spirits, and we got home w/out too much fuss. On the drive home we stopped and got his prescriptions (Lortab), which was a good move. They'd told us he would have the femeral nerve block on for about 18-24 hrs., but by 9pm (just about 12 hrs.) he was feeling the leg, and by midnight was writhing in pain (even with the Lortab!). I gave him some at 12 and more at 3am, and then more at 7am. He made it through the night w/out much sleep (actually we neither of us slept much - and Ori woke up 3x as well, once with a fully wet pull up that wet the bed, so a changing of the sheets was happening at about 4am), and slept away much of Sat. I took the kids out as much as I could, checking in on him every 2-3 hrs.

One of our stops was to the new Eagle Elementary (our new home school), which had O's new obsession - a bouncy bounce! The school looks ... nice, I suppose. It's as industrial and school-like as any school I've ever been in. It does have a nice music room (tho who knows when that'll get nixxed from the curriculum?), and one big cafeterium with a stage. The classrooms are ok, the little kids ones (K-2) will all have bathrooms inside the class, and the older ones (3-5) have hallway bathrooms. They are painting the halls a kind of avocado green and a light brown color (one on one wall, the other on the other wall), and alternated those colors for the classrooms, so they are either green or brown. There is a big backyard area, where the playground will go - and there's still lots of running around room, too! So all in all a good experience. NOT, however, convincing me that it's better than Montessori. ;-)

On Sunday Beca and I went to Choices and donated 10" apiece to Locks of Love. I have yet to upload pictures, those shall come. Rebecca looks absolutely adorable in her new bob. My cut is typical for me, and I like it. Choices gives free haircuts if you donate through them (they don't get any kickback, but they do get to accrue total hair collected and they get some kind of recognition for that), and they gave us both cute cuts. They did sell me on the curl maximizer (roll your eyes, I did!).

Me After:
My after

Sunday, Mother's Day, JAC was still unable to leave the bed for more than a bathroom visit. Overall he's not taking the Lortab (after puking up Sunday morning - a nice 5am wake-up call for me!), though I am not sure that's a better plan. He isn't eating much, a bit of soup or cereal every day is about all, but he's drinking water and tea, so I won't push too hard. No food, no lortab, though. I was hoping today he'd be able to make it down stairs... in fact it's nearly 8am now, and time to go check on him. The clinic has already called and asked me to get him up on those crutches and given me the go-ahead to saran wrap his leg so he can take a bath. He's a teency bit smelly!

Before I sign off, I thought I'd mention that I got to watch Juno last night, and I LOVED it! I love the characters - the disgruntled but loving father, the slightly nutty and anxious adoptive mom, the wonderfully quirky 16 yo girl, and her gangly guitar playing boyfriend. And yk what, all the supporting actors were wonderful too! His mom, the ultrasound tech, the step mom, they were all perfectly cast and wonderfully acted. The story line was fun, heavy but not too heavy, and full of learning curves for everyone! Well done, Juno crew and cast!

I hope all you moms had a fabulous day - or at least a better day than mine (which was still better than JAC's!). Prayers to mother earth...

Gratutious pic of my gorgeous babies:
The love

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Tearing it up

JAC tore the major muscle group (quadricep) from the meniscus. He will go in on Friday to have it repaired. The repair is outpatient, about 2 hrs. of surgery. They will go in, slice down the torn edge of the soft tissue so that they have a clean edge for healing purposes, take some thick (1:1,000,000) thread and sew the end into some holes that they will drill through his meniscus. After 6 hrs. in the orthopedics chamber today, we have all the pictures they could possibly want for now, plus some x-rays that seemed extraneous (and rather painful). Tomorrow he goes in for pre-op tests, and hopefully we'll find out what time on Friday he'll go into OR. Since Beca has no school anyway, it's not a big deal when, but earlier would be better, as hopefully she has a game to get to at 6pm. If she goes, I can drop her off at Theresa's, to be picked up by Peg, and she can sleep over at Mackenna's. Then JAC, O and I will have a quiet night, and she'll have fun with Mac. She was very torn up about his surgery, his injury, etc. Hopefully by Sat. he'll be feeling better enough to be on his own for a few hrs. so I can take O and go to B's Saturday game. If not, well, I'll work it out...

On a better note, Beca got a single, a double, and scored a run today at her game! YAY BECA!!!

Friday, May 02, 2008

Gimping along

The third person on our block is now on crutches. First it was the girl from the quiet family with no name (I'm sure they have a name, perhaps it's glitterwings...we can call them glitterwings, since we don't know their name). They are a middle aged couple w/kids (how many, unknown from here) grown and in college (both). Their college age daughter is now home, and on crutches. She's looking at 8 weeks in a cast plus months of physio. Even after speaking with her, I have no idea what their name is or what their family consists of. They seem nice.

One of the Shumanite boys (Jeremy? Josh?) is on crutches, broke his ... something in his leg. or foot. He's getting rides (since the bus is a nightmare on crutches, this I know from personal experience) from his older sister, who I'm sure is thrilled to do this for him. She's actually totally a sweetie, and a good scout at heart, so I'm sure she isn't going to complain at all. And if it's the older boy, he's also in HS, so not much of a change for her in terms of timing. I'm going to guess he'll be out through the end of June, as well.

And now for victim #3. JAC. He jumped off a boat yesterday in Long Island, thinking the shore was firm, and it weren't, and he was wrenched forward and then back, and his knee was back up on the boat still. It's swollen to the size of a goodly pumpkin, and he's grunting and moaning quite a lot. And he's completely spastic on crutches (you'd think this guy never used crutches before, but he's had several surgeries and injuries requiring them, so he's really got no excuses).

Overall he's being a good sport. He's off the pain meds so far, though probably later today he'll need one to nap (while I get O out of the house for a few hrs. to Ilana's). Hopefully this is NOT a 8 week adventure in lameitude. I'm going to shoot for 10 days with LOTS of arnica.