Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happ-Happy New Year!

Oh goodness! What I wouldn't give to be holed up in bar someplace right now drinking the day away! Sadly, since 5 years ago I started working at my job, I've either been working, or working on New Years Eve and unable to do much with the night! But, I will make the best of it this year end!

So my last post I promised a couple of things... FOOD right?? Well, to start off, I would like to just comment on the fact that I agree with all of you - holidays are about the people who are with you and not what you get. I just feel like bloggers who feel like they have to censor the fact that they got gifts don't do themselves any favors. What are we 5 and can't handle the fact that some kids get big presents and others can't? Like I said I struggled this year, but why would I get jealous and upset that someone else's family didn't? To the anon commenter who posts on my future wife's blog, GET A LIFE! HA! Sorry, Ginge, didn't mean to steal your woman. lol

OK OK, FOOD! Sheesh, what am I thinking??
So anyway, last week there was this massive snowstorm in the North east and everyone got pummeled with snow. I was bored. And home. And bored. So I decided to step outside my cereal box and make.. GASP. DINNER! This was no ordinary dinner too! It was a GC inspired one! Whooop there it is!!!!!!My girl loves Thai food and old school. She is my soulmate from across the way! Oh if only we looked the same too- then I'd be unstoppable! She is so dang cute!!
So I picked up this "Pad Thai" maker thingie in the store a couple weeks ago. Back when I had money when the Peanut was a baby-3 years old (i.e. living off credit cards) she LOVED Thai food and I was never going to deny my baby the opportunity to eat Thai food. I actually survived my entire pregnancy eating Thai food, fruit, and ice cream. Hence the reason why thats all Olivia EVER wants to eat. Funny huh?
So at any rate, since the budget is a little tighter these days I bought it to see how it would taste. It promised yummy noodles in 15 minutes or less. And gosh darn it all, it delivered faster than Bangkok House does!

I made mine with shrimp. And the Peanuts with chicken. Looks yummy no? It has enough sodium in it to compare to the Dead Sea, however, the package says it only has 2 servings in it. Two servings for who? Menly men? Yea probably, but I divided this up into 5 separate bowls and it was more than enough! Good to know right?



(look I added peas to mine!!)

The good news is on this: it's gluten and dairy free. And also nut free if you don't add the crushed peanuts the recipe calls for. It is stupidly easy to make. It tastes DELISH (comparable to Bangkok House...)
So anyway, have a fabulous New Years Eve everyone and stay blessed! I'll be back in the New Year with some... new ideas? I'm not so sure about that one- I'm really bad at making resolutions!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Sisters

Christmas was a success for my little one. Now I needed to make sure that someone else had a great Christmas....

Making her first "please don't eat me!" blog appearance is my step-daughter. Isn't she beautiful? (yes.. we were doing laundry.. lol)

The Peanut always wanted a sibling. Older, younger, didn't matter to her. She has a heart full of unspeakable affection and love for all people, especially kids her age.

When I hugged my little girl I felt like my life was complete. This little girl has been through so much at home, she is not in the best living situation right now and it breaks my heart to have to drop her off there- knowing that it will be another year before I can do anything else about it. She is the sweetest, kindest, and silliest little kid you ever saw.

I call the two of them, Peanut and Joanna, my little skinny minnies. Olivia knows, she is my baby and will always be my baby girl. But when I was sitting on the couch with the two of them, I thought to myself- this is the life. My two daughters... and it was a good feeling.

This Holiday season, we do have to remember that it's NOT about the presents (but presents are still fun!) and it is all about the memories you create. But it still burned me that people will come out and mock families for being able to afford a "bigger Christmas". I know I struggled to get Christmas presents this year, but I knew whatever I bought would be appreciated and loved by each and everyone of them even if they came from Target or the Dollar Store! It broke my heart to read that one of the sweetest bloggers in the whole world went through the emotional stress of a stupid anon comment. Just because our bloggie friends can do MORE in the way of present buying- doesn't mean they are spoiled, selfish, or in any way shape or form- SHOWING OFF. It just means... they can do more! So go for it!
Anyway, I'm happy that I got to spend Christmas with my sister in law, her kids, and my two girls.

Stay blessed everyone! I have some food posts coming up, I PROMISE!

My niece Elisa, my Peanut, my niece Lissette, and my skinny minnie- Joanna.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

All I Want For Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone! Well, it's the day after, but hey- it still counts right?
Seems like everything is getting back to normal around here I think. I slept until just before 8 today, woken up by my phone ringing loudly. The dang thing!!! But it was my other half, seeing if I was ok from the tumultuous night I had the night before!

Let's do the good parts of yesterday first and see if I can mentally skip the bad ones for you all!

First, I was up and at 'em at about 6:45, up before the Peanut!! What?! What was I? A kid on Christmas morning?! No, not quite! I had woken up at about 2, read a book, and never made it back to sleep- so I just stayed awake. I kept telling myself I was just trying to wait for Santa, but Santa came and went, I missed him!

He did bring the Peanut a brand spankin' new Hello Kitty water dispenser! If you have kids, you know they like to use the excuse of "I'm thirsty!!!!" to avoid going to bed. Now, she can have her water right there in her room!

Santa brought her a few books, an outfit for her American Girl doll, and some clothes. Mommy bought her more books, more outfits, and more clothes. She was thrilled to pieces!

She gave me a pair of silver tights and a book, Breaking Dawn. Twilight fans, rejoice! Now my collection is complete!

We kind of putzed around for a few, chatted with my parents and then we were off to Jessica's house to open gifts with the kids. I know how much you all love pictures of my Melo. I love that kid to death I swear- like my own son.. and he loves his Aunty Amy too- everytime he sees me he clings to me like glue.


Here he was taking a bath on Christmas Eve.. before he got THIS!!!! Whoooooo!

What else did Santa have up his sleeve for us??
I did NOT get a memory card reader, or a gift card to get one.. but I did get a brand new shiny purple BIKE!!! (I found my card reader, thats why you are seeing all these flashy new pictures.. lol)

A calender that plays sound.. Red Sox of course.. and the Red Sox twister game! My life is now complete!!! Haha!


I told C how much fun we would have playing that game. No kids allowed, only two players.. TWSS.

Oh wait, you wanted to know what I ate right?? Well, I took the idea from Biz, the expert at making LOVELY dinners and I contributed to the dinner with the family a nice baked shrimp dish. Based upon this recipe. It was SO AWESOME! Doesn't it look good???
There was steak, mashed potatoes, and other Christmas-y food stuffs, but I ended up eating only the shrimp.

I used margarine in place of butter, and gluten free bread crumbs in place of the panko ones, and I think this held up pretty nicely! Everyone loved it.

Bad stuff? Yep, it's rough when the whole family is together for the holidays- and not everyone agrees with the decisions I make in my life, but I have to tell you- my other half and his sister are my two best friends in the whole world and I am forever grateful I have them as number one FRIENDS. And number two FAMILY. And I can tell you that I am HAPPY. Even when my family drives me nuts and I end up hiding in my room at 8 on Christmas day because I need to escape and can't drive away... I still remember who my family is in my heart. I'm not anything like my sisters. I'm not anything like my parents. And my grandmother for all her "I'm just worried" is 83, set in her ways, and loves to give me hell all the time. Its painful to just have to grin and bear it. But I guess, I'll do it for now- knowing that in the end my reward will be my husband coming home to his wife and his daughters.

Well I hope everyone had a lovely lovely Christmas and Santa was good to everyone! No one got coal right?! haha! Enjoy the last final stretch of the year 2009!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Dear Santa...

Please .. oh please!!!! from the bottom of my little heart.. please bring me a new memory card reader for my camera!

Otherwise I will end up repeating all my pictures from long ago..

I am very very sad without it!

I'm trying to think back to the happy days with it and when I think about not having my memory card reader I get angry, and I want to smash an umbrella pole into the sand.
My heart is as empty as when I cleaned out my apartment

I feel locked up.. trapped behind this door or thing I can't come out from behind...

I hope I've convinced you dear Santa, that I REALLY need a new memory card reader. Because no one likes to recycle pictures. And if you don't put one in my stocking... I will send my gangsta child after you!!!!

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! I'm hitting up Wal-Mart tonight in the hopes of buying a new memory card reader. I have no friggin' clue where mine is!!!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Winter Wonderland

I woke up this morning a little groggy and a little late. My usual weekend wake-up call at 8 didn't happen and for some reason the Peanut let me sleep until almost 9. Love her!
Her eye is doing MUCH better! We went to the derm who gave her an ointment for the skin all around her eye.. it was most definitely exzema. Poor thing!
OK- so yesterday was her recital!!!! To those who know me via Facebook- you saw my plead for her to get better- she came down with this sudden fierce cold. No temp, so I have no fear that it's H1N1, just a cough and a runny nose. But she managed to pull it together in time for her big debut! Which... I wish I could show you but sadly was not allowed to tape! Her dance studio must have made big money on this show. It was held in the studio (which.. they own...) charged $9 dollars a ticket, and $15 dollars if you wanted a tape of the show. There were 3 shows yesterday, with 14 acts in each one. About 5 or 6 kids per class... you do the math. Keep up if you can! Haha!
But my little star did awesome! The tap number was great- plus she was the only ballet dancer who knew what she was doing! Amazing! We were so pproud!
I can at least show you a picture of her hair- it took forever to do!


After her recital we had a holiday party to go to.. my other small group of friends were having a Christmas get together (I get around don't I???) and we were in charge of bringing dessert.
I wanted to make chocolate mousse pie. Then I wanted to make "Pot-o'-Dirt". I ended up with what I'm going to call Snowfall Layer Cake. Warning, this dessert was not gluten-free, dairy-free, or low-fat. But holy moly, it was TASTY!
We started with this mess.
Please excuse the bacon in the background. I swear this dessert was MEAT-free!

I gave the Peanut the perfect job while having a cold since she couldn't lick the spoons! Smashing Oreos!


(ummmm shout out to Biz about the above pic.. she loves snowmen!!!!)
Soooooooooooo the Pot-O'-Dirt recipe that my father is infamouso for calls for whipped cream folded in. I had it in my hands.. and never folded it into the pudding mixture. I had layered almost all the Oreos and pudding by the time I realized it and now had a container of whipped cream to deal with.


I dumped it ontop and pretended it snowed on the pudding.

The party was a sucess, we enjoyed a night of over-indulging in Mexican themed food followed up by present opening and a couple rounds of Wii bowling. The Peanut beat me........... GO FIGURE!


(Aunty Heather.. she won at the bowling game!)
Oh yea, and just to remind everyone about animal safety. I have cats. Not dogs. And every dog I have been around is too big to pick up- therefore... while holding a dog who is smaller than your cat, please remember to place her down gently on the floor when she wants to get down. DO NOT JUST LET HER GO! Cats land on all fours, dogs do NOT!
I dropped this poor little pup last night and she splatted on the floor. Sorry Lily! I think she'll be ok though...

You've noticed I've done a lot of Wii playing lately right? I have, and I have a total case of the GIMMIES over that too! C and I HAD a Wii, who when he left begged me to give it to his daughter for her to play with because she wouldn't be living with us for awhile. As soon as I do my taxes I'm buying another one, I won't last that long without one! I need to get my game on, and beat the Peanut at bowling!!!
I hope everyone has a WONDERFUL Christmas! Or whatever Holiday you celebrate, I hope it will be Merry and Bright!
I think I'll be posting before then, it should be a SLOW week at work! Yay!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Ripped From The Headlines

Where the hell have I been? Anyone know where the time went? I'm not sure where it did either! But I'm back I guess!

It's been freakin' insanity people! I suppose the real reason I've been lost here is work. Why do I have a job? Some days I wonder where the light is at the end of the tunnel. But I got one! A TEMP! Yay! My saving grace.. a woman named Gail! She started last week and I have been training her- soooooo its a little rude for me to be blogging while I'm training! But it is very chaotic for her to train when it's very busy! But here's hoping she stays!!!

We had a potluck at work last week and I had to contribute something to the pack. I chose to make something for our "healtymagination appetizer" - you know to offset the cheesecake and stuff! So I picked an app that I have been admiring from afar.. Miss Hannah's stuffed zucchini bites because they just look SO GOOD!


Mine, did not compare to hers- and I did leave out the nuts (my Melo baby!) and used half cornmeal/ flax seed meal (as I did not have almond meal) But can I tell you something?????
I won a gift card.... and even though I'd like to say it was because of MINE it was just totally random because I contributed a food item. Ha! However, everyone who had one, loved them. YUM! Thanks for the inspiration Hannah! You are so awesome!

What else? Well my lil Peanut is on the injured list- at least I say she is! She's had this rash on her eyes all around the eyelid and lower eyes. It looks like eczema, but I'm not sure what it is! We have been to the doctor a couple of times- to no avail. Next, is Thursdays appointment at the dermatologist. My poor lil bub, I feel awful. Literally NOTHING has worked on her to moisturize, but it's such a delicate area, soooooo I don't want to touch it! My C is freaking out thinking she has an infection and now he's making me panic! She's adorable anyway but I'm afraid kids will start noticing and make fun of her...
But her recital is on Saturday and I'm so excited for her! She's been busting her little butt practicing so I hope it all pays off!
Well and just to keep you entertained, here are some random shots from around the world.

Me and the Peanut!



Playing Wii (Super Mario Kart.. best game EVER!!!)
Playing with baby Gigi... look at those cheeks!
Recognize the lovely bride from my wedding post?? She's practicing holding babies!
Here is another couple practicing holding babies...
My little sister and her hubby- holding little Melo. Melo looked so small with Rony holding him! It was so cute! And Melo LOVED Rony! He even gave that big goofy guy a big hug!


Neither girl is preggers and neither is my brother in law... but it's still a good idea to get comfy around babies!
Well my darlings, in case you didn't notice, Jenny picked ME in winning the contest for the Kay's Natural stuff. I'm not exactly sure EXACTLY WHAT I won. But if it's free, I will take it! Love you Jenny!!
So, I do want to send Christmas cards to people, so if anyone is brave enough to email me your home address I would love to send something! You may receive it a couple days AFTER Christmas.. but hey.. better late than never! I have someone's address already, don't worry, I'm too scared to fly, and my car probably won't make it across the country, so there is NO CHANCE of me stalking you!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

All About The Vegetables Baby

Well hey there! Happy Thursday it's almost the weekend!

Just to let you know right off the bat, Miss PB&J Jenny is having a giveaway for some Kay's Natural cookies. They are gluten-free so my poor tummy can indulge. I really want to win so I have to put this notice up here. But please don't enter. Because I really really want to win!

Sooooo Thanksgiving is behind us. The wedding is behind me. Thanks for all your comments guys/girls. It was tough but it's over now- and I don't think anyone held it against me. I guess it was just the fact that I felt baited, like the person at my table was harassing me and asking me questions to get me to flip out or talk about what was going on. Even though he didn't come out and ASK me directly, the "whats new with you? whats going on? hows it going???" with the LOOK on his face, like TALK ABOUT IT! He already harassed me about it on Facebook- made his feelings perfectly clear. But hey, people in glass houses should not throw stones and I'm SURE if he were in the same situation as I was he would think differently. It's very easy to make a decision about something when you are not affected by it. Then when he ever started about the racial business, that's when I panicked and said enough was enough. It's was more than enough that he was judging me based on my life choices, now he was basically calling the people I love the most scum. I reminded him where he came from. At least my peeps didn't have to dig a tunnel or swim across a river to get to the states. ; )

And moving right along before I start offending anyone..

What did you do with your Thanksgiving leftovers? If you are like me, you bought too many veggies, thinking you might use them in SOMETHING- and then never made it. Plus I have a habit of buying with the intent of making something and forgetting to ask myself if I already have it at home. Needless to say I have a ton of canned goods, a big head of cabbage, and lots of spinach and shrooms. What the hell was I going to do with it all?

When life hands you vegetables, make minestrone! I know you guys like the way my minestrone looked on Thanksgiving... so here is the method behind the madness!

This one is vegetarian/vegan and can be made carnivorous simply by tossing some beef or sausage in it. I wouldn't recommend chicken although it might be a little healthier meat addition- it just wouldn't have the same flavor!

You need: canned goods.. Tomatoes, beans, corn, and peas
Fresh veggies: spinach, purple cabbage, mushrooms, zuchinni, onion (as much or as little as you want..)
Broth: I use Pacific Naturals- Low sodium veggie broth
Water: about a half a cup
Oil: about 1/4 cup, with all these veggies we need some fat to absorb all the nutrients!
Method:
heat oil in a big giant pot (depends on how much you are making..), add onions and cook until tender, add zuchs and shrooms cook for a few more minutes. Add broth and canned tomatoes. Add cooked beans- I like my beans soft, so I added them here rather than in the last few minutes. Next add your peas and corn.. and let that all simmer for a few! In the last five minutes or so of cooking you can add the spinach and cabbage and any spice you want. I usually use basil, parsley, garlic powder, S&P, and oregano. If you want your cabbage less purple and more cooked, add it sooner, but I like my cabbage more purple and less cooked. It looks pretty and I don't mind it a little "under cooked". At then end of cooking the broth will have kind of cooked down so that is where we add our water- just to lighten it up a bit.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Two Hearts As One

Ahhhhh... sweet Monday! I can't believe it came up that fast! Did anyone else get the biggest reality check when their alarms went off this morning? Dang! I was like, WTH was that?!
But it's back to the daily fight for me! It was a hectic day for sure! What I hate the most is when the people above me hound me to do something, "its an emergency! get it done now!!!!!" Then, I report back, "in progress, I have 8 other emergencies I'm working on now too", response: "Drop everything and do it!" THEN when I GET IT DONE- no thanks??? Yea, I just saved your butt from getting chewed out and nothing? *sigh* oh how I earn for the college days where I did nothing but party all the time.
Well tonight was salsa class with Jessica. We are getting better and better! I love it! I wish I could record it, but I think the teacher would probably think I was stealing choreography or something crazy. He's a little anal! But my favorite partner that I danced with was a chubby (I can't mince words here) Spanish guy. He was AWESOME! Just goes to show even if you are not thin and "perfect" you can do it!!!! Jess and I keep telling ourselves, "if big papi can do it - so can we!" THAT'S RIGHT!
So what did I do since I last saw you all? Oh yea! I went to a wedding! Oh and Gina.. Lissette and Elisa are Jessica's two girls, and the baby Melo, is her son. So they are my nieces and nephews ; )So, where was I? OH THE WEDDING! OMG! It was so beautiful! The food! The dresses! The wedding was held at Whispering Pines in West Greenwich, RI. It is literally in the middle of nowhere. We drove into the entrance and I thought "Ohhh.. this is nice!" Then twenty minutes later I was panicking, "Where the FUDGE are we?!?!"
Here are a couple of shots of the ride in.. LOVELY!!



We get there thinking we were late because all our invitations said 4:30 and we were there at about 4:20.. we are racing to the hall where the mother of the bride says, "oh we just wanted to make sure people were on time!" THANKS MOMMA! : )
The ceremony starts- Amanda the bride looks ravishing in an eggshell halter dress with an antique lace overlay and mocha brown sash. Her hair had a braid with a side bun.. and silver snowflakes in her hair. Ohhhh she was so beautiful!
Here is half the bridal party-

I almost cried... until I saw Amanda's older sister...close up here!

See the girl with the fire truck red hair???? Yea... who does that? Who has perfectly normal brown hair and then the morning of her little sister's wedding goes out and colors it fire truck red???? That was the scandal of the night! I was shocked that her sis did not go down the aisle with a black eye too!
So enough of that drama.. Want to see what I ate?? I literally didn't have time to eat anything all day so I went to down when I got there!
App plate:

Yea crackers. No good- but man I was shaking by the time I got this plate so I would have probably eaten raw beef at this point!

Bruschetta! This was tasty, but a little soggy. Maybe if the waitress had moved around the room a little faster???

Beef Wellington! O-M-G!!!! Best I've ever had! I only had one piece but I wanted MORE!
Up next is the salad and entree- I chose the chicken. Oh holy chicken, it was amazing! I didn't care for the salad that much- one because I'm not a cheese person and two because I'm not a balsamic vinegar person. Meh- but it looked awesome anyway!
Ok, chicken.. with a light marinara sauce and cheese layered on top (here I ate the cheese). Sweet potatoes with cinnamon and maple syrup, scalloped potatoes (and not those dumb Hungry Jack boxed ones either), and green beans. OH YEA BABY. Don't think I didn't demolish this plate!


So here's where it gets tricky. I was the 7th wheel the whole night, I went with three couples (but took my own car- I'm crazy I know) and spent the whole time watching them canoodle and doodle and talk about buying houses, and weddings, and outings, and stuff. And I was there by myself. I don't have many guy friends myself and we all know where my man is at this point. I found myself getting more and more anxious as the night wore on and at one point, when someone made an off-color comment about me and I snapped and tossed my napkin at him and bolted to the bathroom where I cried and cried. It was the first night I was out since my Carlos left and I picked a wedding where I would be surrounded by lovey dovey couples?? Oh not good. I ended up leaving early and going to Jessicas' house where we downed a bottle of wine and I drowned my sorrow in booze and tears.
The next day I talked to my Carlos about it and he was upset along with me. If he were home he would have come. I know that and it would have been easier for me. But I felt awful, but my heart was pounding, I was sweating, and I could have easily tossed anyone out of my way that night. Amanda understood thank goodness how hard it was to go. That I love her for....
One last pic before I head off to bed.

My high school pals- from the left Crystal, me, Amanda, my TWIN Robyn, and Kristen. Lovely girls..