Tuesday, December 30, 2008

....And the Band Goes Marching In

Remember this post? Well this is the picture in question.
I know this sort of contradicts my lil' rant - but I adore the pic' and isn't it really my choice with my child?

Ha! ...and getting a scanner for Christmas worked too! ;D

Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Stuff Dreams are Made of....

This is my bed. I know, I know the pics aren't that close up, but you get the idea. I love my bed. Serious mattress love occurs in the Skippy household. [Get your mind out of the gutter...giggle] What I mean is - I have the most comfortable bed in the world and the fact it is a sleigh bed, king sized? With all our quilts thrown on, a cotton blanket and flannel sheets - yes, this is the stuff that dreams are made of tadpoles.
This is the end of the bed with my cedar chest and two of my grandma's quilts. The one hanging up is over 60 years old. The one across the chest is the last one she completed before she passed and is the only one any of the family is allowed to touch - and ONLY when they are sick. We call it the sick quilt. Nothing but originality in this family folks. :D
Here is a closer shot of Grandma's old quilt and one I made on the bed. Funnily enough her's is in better shape! Hee.
Okay, so you all know I didn't bring you here to allow me to wax poetic on my Sealy, right? Oh, no, no. I am having a problem with my bed; to be more specific the location of my bedroom. I have not had a total of 3 hours of sleep a day/night in my lovely bed since before Christmas.
Because? We live next door to the nicest neighbors [really!] except they have a pechant for overseas travel, for long durations and they leave their home unattended. No problem there, right? Wrong - because their lovely little home needs repairs. Specifically it needs repairs directly outside of the big window you see in the first pic'. Repairs that require parts of their home to be nailed down. NAILED DOWN SO THEY WILL STOP BANGING like a poorly trained Drumline. Jiminy Crickets! It has been windy here in Skippyville and things that are slightly detached from the roof, the second story and the deck of this home go bang...bang...bang...ALL DAY & NIGHT. I am tired and cranky and I want my nice neighbors to come home so I can hand them a ladder, a hammer and a can o' nails and simply point at the deritus that is the back of their house.
Then I will bake them cookies. And then go back to bed.
Until their cute little twins decide it is time to play basketball on the deck. [They do this all the time - but we can usually get them to skedaddle to the basketball court that is 15 feet from their back door.]

Saturday, December 27, 2008

My First 4 U.S. States Artist Trading Cards

I am in a swap over at Swa-bot for the 50 U.S. states ATCs for the next year. Each month we will be doing a different series - Here are mine for January. This is Arkansas [I know, duh!] but the reason it has milk and a cow on the front is due to milk being Arkansas' official state beverage.

I found this state flag for Arizona [the letters/date are my add-ons] but do want to know a neat bit of trivia? The star in the middle is actually copper colored. It is their state's official metal and Arizona is also the largest producer of copper in the U.S. Nifty!
You might have to click on this to enlarge it, but it is a political cartoon from before Alaska was given statehood. Evidently they were having quite a fight with the Senate seeking their rights.

And finally Alabama - which looks lopsided, but I think that is just the way I scanned it. OOPS! That is their state motto on the side and it means "We dare maintain our rights."
I haven't told y'all yet what Pooldad gave me for Christmas - it is SOOOOOOOOO neat! He gave me an Epson color printer/fax/scanner/photo printer.
It is unreal and I have been having the best time with it. Plus he gave me about a gazillion different types of craft supplies - so I have been playing with all this fun stuff the past two days.
I hope everyone had a great and relaxing Christmas. We all [in our family] still have 9 more days off together - it is very exciting.

Friday, December 26, 2008

This Should Make Everyone Smile....

This is my baby boy. Happy 18 th Birthday Champ! We miss you and are awaiting your call.
Love, Mom
[isn't he a cutie? hee...he is 4 years old in this pic' and YES those are real Craftsman tools. you need to know this kid was dismantling his sister's highchair & my vacuum cleaner at 2 years old with a butter knife. thankfully he knew how to put them back together. i am not kidding.]

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Did I Forget to Mention....

I was gifted with Leg Warmers?
[I posted the first picture after Gail's comment :D...Spot was not happy. Hee!]

Okay, He NAMED It

The Gnome? The Dallas Gnome?

It has been Christened.


Yep! The Gnome is now named "Tony Gnomo"

[for those of you who are not football/Dallas fans - their Quarterback is Tony Romo!]


My Son

Called me today.

The best Christmas present in the whole world.

Those of you who read my old blog know, those of you who didn't just know this is the best Christmas present in forever.

I have so much to tell you.

What is the Rule Here?

okay, okay...don't ask me to explain why I am awake at 5 am. Yes, all the wrapping is done - has been...the casserole is ready for breakfast and the potatoes are boiled for Yvo's wonderful latkes.

BUT...when can I wake the kids? Seriously. I have a boat load of presents I want to see unwrapped and for anyone who read my old blog [hey you two!] it is well known I have a bad case of insomnia on a good day -as such, I have been awake since 3 am.

I want them to get up now. Giggle...aren't I bad? I can't help it. I actually HAVE a reason for them to be awake before dawn and I am getting tired of waiting.

So if anyone is being as ridiculous as me and is reading this at 5 am - vote...well, actually just agree with me so I can wake 'em up and allow the mayhem to begin.

Wait 'till you guys see the bike I bought for 35 bucks, free shipping. It is AMAZING!

Now SOMEONE tell me I can rouse them!


ETA: Did I mention that I bought Pooldad a Dallas Cowboys Gnome? Yes, yes I did. Wait for it - because that is going to be a post all it's own.

C'mon - y'all are laughing....a Dallas Cowboys Gnome? Internet Shopping rocks - it is all I can say.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Leaning Tower of Treeza, Doohicky and the Spot

Merry Christmas fellow bloggers! Weehaaaaaaa! It has been a busy few days and I thought I should pop back in to write a few lines before I disappear into the wonder that is Christmas.
This is the "Leaning Tower of Treeza". Sigh. Unless I put up the tree, tie it down, put the lights on and then let the family loose to decorate we ultimately end up with a tree that (1. ) Falls over at least three times and (2. ) leans at dangerous angles. The stories! The horrors!
This is due to the fact that on the list of things that Pooldad CAN do - putting up a tree and securing it is not one of those things he is capable of in any way, shape or form. We don't know why - and obviously not a deal breaker, but......
I take the lumps - because I have been feeling a might poorly and he did try. Bless his heart he does try. I must say the tree leans - and is damn near dead - ooooooh....wait for it -tangent - Pooldad THREW AWAY our artificial tree. Huh? He neglected to mention it until I had asked him about it nine times between December 1st and December 9th. I was so miffed [he threw out our TREE? who does that? I still haven't gotten a reason, but I suspect it has something to do with the tree being a "gift" from my Mom - HEY! two tangents in one. It really is Christmas!]
Anyway, I was pretty mad and I asked him to please to go.now.to.the.local.grocery.store.and.buy.me.a.tree. So for $30 [pretty nice for the tree] we now have the Leaning Tower of Treeza in our home and we all collectively hold our breath while walking through the living room. That is solely from fear the thing will crash, again!
This weekend the youngest and Pooldad were responsible for puppy sitting a lil' ball of fire named Peanut. She is a min-pin. I couldn't remember her name [Hi Susan (waves!) - love you - but the name Peanut? Does not fit your dog.] So I called her Doohicky. Pooldad just sat back, resigned, shaking his head and called her Whirling Dervish [which REALLY fits]. Have any of you ever been around one of these lil' gazelle like pups? They are crazy tiny, with long legs and speed to rival a greyhound. They are something else!
Heehee - see? even the Spot thought so. Spot didn't quite know what to make of her new friend. They made fast buddies [amazing!], but our low to the ground, short legged and quite sturdy Spottie just couldn't keep up. I have never seen my doggy pant INSIDE our home in the middle of winter, but Doohicky just about wore her out jumping, leaping and bounding from piece of furniture to piece of furniture. It was wild and a heck of a lot of fun. It also made me realize that one doggy was enough for us right now. Whew! I forgot to add: This pup was a little sweetheart and I wouldn't mind owning one. She was great - but it was a lot of action for our sedate lil' home :D.
All our Christmas shopping is done - btw, did you know it is absolutely possible, if you have a list, to spend $330 in Target in no less then 10 minutes? It is...we did it. :D Thank goodness for the lists, knowing the layout and the ability to run really fast! [True story] Hey! In our defense we thought Target was open until midnight, so Pooldad and I went to the local Mexican restaurant to have a nosh and well, by then it was 10:45 and Target actually closed at 11:00 pm! EEEEK! Done, bought and wrapped. I am so ahead of the game this year. For once. In FOREVER! Which makes me squee in happiness. I am not going to be wrapping on Christmas Eve - for the first time in, yes, FOREVER!
I will probably be back in the next few days because we are staying home, home, home for the holidays. Yippeee!
The family [and anyone of y'all that is cruising through] is welcome to visit us in VA, at any time, because we are not leaving and will have a bunch of great food, desserts and libations. Let it be so.
My biggest hugs and best love to y'all. I love you guys. Merry Christmas.

Friday, December 19, 2008

White Trash Recipe

This stuff is so yummy and addictive. It is called "White Trash" - but for gift purposes at our kids' schools we refer to it as "Christmas Munch". Although, come to think of it, the use of the word Christmas probably isn't too PC either. meh...oh well.

It is also super easy to make.

[This is for you Phelan!]

White Trash
3 1/2 cups of cheerios
6 cups of Crispix cereal [or a mix of corn and rice Chex]
2 1/2 cups peanuts [we use unsalted]
2 cups of pretzel sticks [broken up]

2 bags of white chocolate chips

Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl. Set aside.
Melt white chocolate in the microwave, stirring occasionally, until pourable. [Or melt in a double boiler on the stove.]
Pour chocolate over dry ingredients. Mix well.
Spread mixture out in a single layer on waxed paper. Let harden.
When hard, break into pieces, gift bag it and enjoy!

[Store in an airtight container]

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I Guess Your Idea of 24 Hour Banking is Different than Mine

[This is my banking support team. Notice the bear on the left? She is wearing the youngest's sweater from when she was a weeeeee' one. And the penguin? He's angry. Him and I were going to Christmas shop online...big! HUGE!]
I just had the biggest chuckle.

My bank promises 24 hour banking. I know - you think ATM, online, etc. - but no, their promise is to have a live person, via phone, available 24 hours a day.

I have never thought about it, nor have I ever had a need to utilize it at 2 am, but I wanted to transfer money, now. I can only transfer money via phone or in person. So, being 2 am, I called.

They are closed. Every night. From 12 am until 6 am.

Um....doesn't scream 24 hours to you, does it? I guess 18 hour banking just didn't have the same type of ring to it.

Whatever. It just struck me as funny. Especially the recording you receive when you call:

"Thank you for calling Bank. Our 24 banking line is currently closed. Please call during our business hours of 6 am until 12 am. Thank you."

Pooldad? I was going Christmas shopping for you. Let's hope the mood strikes me again between the hours of 6 am and 12 am. Eh? mwuah!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Felt Mascot/Stuffie

Well the little beasts left me a bit of craft stuff. So today I made my first felt mascot/stuffie/softee...whatever they call them. As I said, it is my first and from what I understand they have to be no more then 3 inches long, made out of felt and have a hook attached so you are able to hang it to a purse or cellphone. [My hook is on the back]

That is Pooldad's hand in the pic'. [My hand would've been dwarfed and it would have looked a foot long!] Sorry it is blurry. I am finding I need new glasses or something because my picture taking ability is quite poor lately. :D

It is a mitten for those of you who are questioning my sewing skills.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Thieving Children and Craftiness

[There was a picture here, but I have to figure out how to black out names! Read on!]

My children decided to make handmade Christmas cards. Nice, huh? Well they decided to abscond with my craft drawers and now they are decimating all of my supplies. [Big words make it sound so much nicer doesn't it? Because what I really want to say is "The little brats stole all my stuff and are using it up." But that isn't very nice.]

They are doing a great job, so it isn't too painful. sniff...[stomping Skippy feet] I want my stuff back dangit!

Y'all have a fun, crafty day!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Dinner For 6 Nights - Leftovers Stretch the Budget

This was our menu this week and it was delicious:

  1. Chili with beans, cheese, onions and sour cream with saltine crackers

  2. Chicken and Dumplings

  3. Leftover Chili with beans over rice with cornbread muffins

  4. Leftover Chicken and Dumplings [so better the second time around!]

  5. Roast Chicken with rice and broccoli

  6. Chicken and rice soup and french bread

Grocery List:

  • 1 lb hamburger meat $4.00

  • 1 large can of kidney beans $1.59

  • 1 large can of diced tomatoes $1.00

  • 1 pack of chili seasoning $1.00

  • 1 lb bag of white rice $1.59

  • 2 roaster chickens* $7.00

  • 1 can chicken broth $1.00

  • 1 5 lb bag of potatoes $3.00

  • 1 lb frozen broccoli $2.50

  • 1 bag of large carrots $1.60

  • 1 pkg. celery $2.00

  • 1 white onion $0.50

  • 8 oz. of sour cream $2.00

  • 1 box Jiffy corn muffin mix $0.50

  • TOTAL: $28.29

*chickens are sold two to a pack at our local grocery store for about $3.50 each

I had eggs, Jiffy dumpling mix, crackers and shredded cheddar cheese on hand plus additional spices for the chili. If I was to add the cost it would be an additonal $8.00.

This is the way it broke down:

1. Sunday night we had chili. Leftovers were refrigerated. 2. Monday night we had chicken and dumplings [with potatoes] using a whole chicken for this. Leftovers refrigerated 3. Tuesday we had Chili over rice with corn muffins [over rice really stretches this.] 4. Wednesday we had leftover chicken and dumplings [adding more dumplings because we ate them all on Monday :D!] 5. Thursday we roasted the second chicken, made double amounts of rice and the bag of broccoli [using half for dinner, saving the rest for Friday]. The carcass was cooked for soup on Friday with celery [the top leafy part] & half an onion. 6. Friday we used the broth from yesterday's chicken, the leftover chicken with the extra rice and broccoli for very, very yummy chicken noodle soup with homemade french bread. The soup had carrots, broccoli and celery along with the leftover chicken and rice.

I actually had chicken and dumplings for lunch one day and chili twice for lunch this week!

This is a menu to feed a family of four. [Dad, Mom, teenager and a tweener ;D]

Also everything is homemade unless listed [ex. Jiffy dumplings and Jiffy cornbread - Love me some Jiffy!]

Friday, December 5, 2008

ATC - Artist Trading Card

I am new to making Artist Trading Cards [ATCs]. I love the medium and they are so much fun to make. This is my 3rd card [the other two have been sent and no pictures :(] I do love it though.

The person I am sending it to loves sewing like me so I have an extra fondest for this one. It is covered in a quilt fabric, with a sticker basket/thimble...two buttons...and the needle is handcut and colored by me. The red ribbon is ...um, red ribbon. hee :D

These cards are 2.5"x3.5" with square/rounded/cut corners.

Someone said you could get addicted to making these little whosits. I believe them. I had a great time creating this one. I hope my swap buddy likes it.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Spot O' Kindness

I received this cookie cutter in the mail today. Look familiar? Yep - that is a replica of the useless lump that is [at present] alive and happy, sleeping on my feet. [For those that aren't familiar yet, you will be, that is our dacshund Spot. Spot the Dot or Spoootie. Take your pick]
Why Skippy, where on earth did such a treasure come from? You ask....
My Tadpoles, let me explain. So fascinating.....
I am a member of swap-bot. We swap postcards, ATCs, letters, lists, recipes, homemade projects, etc. In one of my swaps I met a nice lady named Aunt B. Aunt B and I swapped votive candles. She read my profile and discovered I didn't know how to make pie crust. Yes, baker fail, hush up! She was kind enough to send me a recipe for pie crust. I thought it was such a thoughtful, neat extra that I mailed her back a thank you note. That usually isn't done - as you have already swapped with eachother and we rate our partners on the site which is the "thank you" - but she was so touched to receive a snail mail thank you note - she dug through her stash of cookie cutters and found SPOT. Who knew they made useless dachsie cookie cutters? [The cookie cutter isn't useless, the dog...really...the dog is, but loved, I swear!] Aunt B. had one and sent me it along with a recipe to compliment the cutter.
Sometimes you just sit back in your chair and think "Wow, someone thinks of me. I AM special." Aunt B made me feel like that today. She didn't have to dig this cookie cutter up and send it along with a recipe and note that said "Thinking of you". I only know her from one swap - but I knew after the first swap we would be friends.
Aunt B. loves to sew, so I am sending along a couple of thimbles I bought for my Grandma. I have them now because my Grandma has been gone for 13 years. I miss her and she was so wonderful.
The thimbles are purely decorative, but Aunt B reminds me of the kind heart my Grandma had and it makes me happy that she might understand that she is special too, at least to me.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

How Special Is This?


Isn't he sweet? This is my win for the "Pay it Forward" at Gail's blog At the Farm. I received it in the mail last evening and just LOVE it! The little teddy is wearing a post office t-shirt and the mailbox is a bank! Pooldad suggested we put all our spare change in it so he can buy me postage for all my swaps and gifts I send out via USPS.

Thank you so much Gail. I wasn't feeling so great today and this lifted my spirits immeasurably. The winners of my Pay it Forward post are going out Friday - keep your eyes on the mailbox!

Wednesday Recipe

[please click to read]

Today's recipe is brought to you by Skippy.

It is a RECIPE to avert disaster in her kitchen.

You understand.

I know you do.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

A Quick Bento

I thought this was too cute! The oldest made it for her lil' sister. It is only one half of her lunch, because I didn't get a picture of the other box which had cherry tomatoes, marinated cucumbers and celery.

This box has: Heart shaped cheddar and swiss cheese, heart shaped salami and squares of flour tortilla; homemade mini chocolate chip cookies and a clementine.

It amazes me how much fun they have making their lunches. I also love that they food is always nutritious and portion controlled.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

What I Did [Or Didn't Do] On Thanksgiving

[Don't judge the wine selection people. The screw off is actually sparkling cider]

What I did:
- Opened two cans of corn
- Whisked the roux into the gravy to thicken it and added salt and pepper
- Drank mimosas
- Slept

What I didn't do:
- Any of the shopping. Not one iota.
- The turkey [Pooldad - and ooooooooh, it was so moist and good]
- The pies [Start to finish? Apple was done by the oldest & Pumpkin by the youngest. Num]
- The sweet potato casserole [The youngest]
- The corn casserole [The youngest]
[Okay there is a pattern here, so I am not going to list everything. Suffice it to say, I did not cook one thing. Nothing. Nada!]

I also didn't:
- Decorate [All three]
- Set the table [The girls]
- Clean up [Pooldad and the oldest]

This is what my lovely family did for me. After 22 years - I have had the first Thanksgiving ever, in my adult life, where I did not have to lift one finger. I simply had to sit, watch the parade, drink mimosas [side note: We simply do not drink these often enough. They are delicious. How great are they? - Orange juice and champange? It's a good thing.] And I gave recipe advice and slept [the mimosa effect :D]. How awesome is it to get a nap on Thanksgiving? Before dinner?

ALL the food was scrumptious. I swear it all tasted like I cooked it myself. I mean that as an extremely high compliment. Not because I am the world's best cook - it is just that I have been doing this for so long. I know what an undertaking this was for them.

Thank you Skippy family for giving me the best Thanksgiving day I have ever had.

I love you all.

I am still so impressed and teary that they would put forth such effort for me. I can feel the tears coming on again. Sigh.

Hope everyone had a wonderful day.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanks for Giving to Me

I chose one of the family camping trips to illustrate just how lucky I am..... Our youngest and Daddy
Thank you for marrying me and giving me my lil' sunshine.
I posted this because I can [ha!] and it makes me smile. Big!
Plus, notice we do not forget the tunes while camping?
[see the boombox in the background? yes?]
Honey? Shave, please!!

This is a composite.
Thank you for my beautiful daughter.
But, boy-o, thank you for the caffeine that is in that cup.
I could post a whole lot more, but right now I want to give thanks to these 3 - they make me happy to get up in the morning. They put a smile on my face the minute they walk in the door in the afternoon. And? They never cease to amaze me with how much they love me and let me know it is okay to not quite be "the Mom" I want to be.
They think I am close to perfect. Even if I don't believe them, it sure does make me feel good that they think so.
Thanksgiving is always for you Pooldad, Squirrel and Porcupine.
I love you guys.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Wednesday's Recipe

This is covered in an egg wash with cinnamon sugar. It has heart cut outs.


[**Beacuse Skippy is incapable of making pie crusts]

**1 box (15 oz) Pillsbury® refrigerated pie crusts, softened as directed on box
8 cups thinly sliced, peeled apples (8 medium)
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 tablespoon lemon juice

1. Heat oven to 425°F. Place 1 pie crust in ungreased 9-inch glass pie plate. Press firmly against side and bottom.
2. In large bowl, gently mix filling ingredients; spoon into crust-lined pie plate. Top with second crust. Wrap excess top crust under bottom crust edge, pressing edges together to seal; flute. Cut slits or shapes in several places in top crust.
3. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until apples are tender and crust is golden brown. Cover edge of crust with 2- to 3-inch wide strips of foil after first 15 to 20 minutes of baking to prevent excessive browning. Cool on cooling rack at least 2 hours before serving.


-You can use Apple Pie spice instead of the spices. I just shake it over until well coated.

This pie was made by our oldest daughter for her Daddy for Thanksgiving. She used a heart cookie cutter to cut out the hearts and put them back on. Although it appears to be dark [burnt] it is actually the carmalization of the cinnamon sugar that makes it look like that. It is Daddy's favorite.

Now I have to go hide it. I think the rest of us would like at least a piece tomorrow. :D

Happy Thanksgiving to you all!

Friday Faux Pas

Or here in Skippyland it is a "Friday F-UP", but, since I am all about family and keeping it clean - I will be gentle. [I know it is not Friday, but this happened last Friday.]
Here's the deal - there are some things you can do and some things you cannot do when you have my eyesight [20/700] and you have no corrective lenses to - I don't know- assist you in finding your way around the house.
20/700 is pretty scary without the aid of contacts or glasses, let me just say. You can't gauge walls, colors, distance or depth [this is important later on.] Driving a car is not even an option, as in, you won't be locating said vehicle anytime soon. And reading? Nose to paper baby! - Heck, you can't see whether or not your pedicure is still holding it's own at your height of 5'8.
Are we starting to get a feel for how blind Skippy is? Okay.
I bring up the not being able to see my pedicure [feet] and depth perception for a reason, which leads me to my screw up.
Spoiler: This story involves crafts [yay!] hot wax and my feet. It is not for the squeamish I assure you, but just thank me now for not posting the pictures. Really. Thank me.
I decided the other evening would be a prime time to make my Christmas Wintergreen candles. [Small applause for trying to finish some presents ahead of time! Large smack in the head for upcoming stupidity tyvm.] These are soy based candles that are melted in a double boiler and then poured into cute little silver tins. Mental pic' working? Good :D
The soy chips are white before melting, but become clear once heated [to 160 degrees]. That evening I discovered after the melt that I had no color to include [which would have given the clear melt COLOR and may have averted the upcoming big FAIL], but I thought since it turned white [once hardened] it would be adorable with a holiday ribbon/embellishment and didn't worry about the color. White is Christmasy, right? So with the soy chips melted, with the scent added, I was facing a bowl of clear liquid that I had to transfer from the bowl to the two inch high silver container.
Now is the time you have to ask yourself:

1. Did Skippy decide, perhaps, she should just wait and reheat it tomorrow when she found her eye glasses or reinserted her contacts?

That would be a big "No".

2. Did Skippy think that, maybe, she wouldn't be able to gauge the amount to pour, because, y'know, she can't see?

Don't think that even occurred to her.

3. Did Skippy forge ahead and pour that pan of scalding wax into that little container with no thought to safety or the high burnability of skin or the fact that the probability of overflowing was defcon 5?


But this is because I am Skippy and what else would I do?
I mean besides talk in the third person? :D
Yes tadpoles, that is what I did. And you do need to thank me again for not posting the picture of my foot because I am here to tell you - Hot soy wax? Burns...and it burns like no one's business on bare feet. [This is me being gentle again. Because you know and I know the words "Son of a ...." were coming out of my mouth as opposed to "no one's business" You're welcome.]
So there it is. My bravado, blindness and stupidity rewarded me with a burn on my left foot. The aftermath was that I had quite the icky wound on top of my foot. Which means no long pants, no slippers, socks, showering or, come to think of it, SLEEPING. Try sleeping with the "Burn o' Stupidity" on your foot. It is not happening folks. Not.happening.

Wednesday's Recipe to come later today!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Thanksgiving Postcards

I spent the evening making Thanksgiving postcards for my family. They turned out pretty good, I think. This one is for my in-laws. There is an inside joke on this one.
This one is for my Aunt & Uncle in- law. I wasn't too crazy about the corn.

...and this one is my favorite and is for our 96 year old Grandma.

I made more but they have already been mailed as they are going farther away.
Now I am going to work on making a felt softee for a swap I am involved in. It should be interesting because I have never made one before. Wish me luck or, better, tell me how! :D

Pay it Forward

photo credit: The Squirrel

The lovely blogger [Gail] who writes At the Farm with Gail has graciously treated me to a "Pay it Forward" Gift. As I was one of the first 3 people to comment on her Pay it Forward post I promised to return to my blog and carry on the tradition.

In the spirit of this neat idea I am offering a gift for the first 3 people who post a comment to this entry. When I have the three I will request your mailing address [via email/not to be shared] and send you a new, wrapped gift for entering. In return all you have to do is promise to return to your blog and do the same.

Doesn't this sound like fun?

I look forward to hearing from you all. Since Pooldad isn't allowed [he doesn't have a blog and I already gift him enough-through sheer presence alone, right honey?] I figure the other 5 tadpoles can duke it out. Hee :D

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The Turkey is in the House!

This is me and the youngest petting a very tame turkey before we went horseback riding [hence the oh-so-attractive headgear!] No, this is not the turkey mentioned in the story :D

I am so excited! The Greatest Holiday in all the land is a mere 5 days away. Squeeeeeee! Although I would love to be able to spend beaucoup dollars on a fresh heritage type turkey, alas we are going with our typical standby - the grocery store Tom. This will be my 22nd year of making Thanksgiving and I have always bought from our local grocer. Sometimes frozen, sometimes fresh and never Butterball [I think they are overrated, but just my opinion.] I have always had a nice, moist turkey with no complaints from the masses so I just stick to what I know and can afford.

Since this year I am making Thanksgiving twice - once on Thursday for our immediate family and then again for my in-laws on Saturday - we purchased our turkeys today. My most awesome husband found a 12 lb. turkey for $5.83! Can you believe it? If that isn't spectacular enough he also discovered fresh oysters [12 oz] for $7.99 - but they were $4.00 off! Yippppeeee!

This is, by far, my most favorite holiday and to be able to get such a deal on the two non-negotiable ingredients just makes it so much happier, don't you think? I can fudge mashed potatoes, rig up the yam casserole, homemake the rolls and suffer through homemade pie crusts [they would be awful, but they would at least look like pie crust], but I cannot and will not do Thanksgiving without a turkey [duh] or especially Grandma's oyster dressing. Besides, if I even attempted to stuff the bird with anything but the oyster dressing I would find myself sleeping on the front porch because that is where the lil' heathens would put me.

I can't stand the waiting. I don't think our youngest can either. She saw her Dad bring the turkey in the house this morning and was excited - "Oh Mom, you are making turkey today?" Her poor little face was so sad when I had to point out that um, no...that is for Thursday, honey. She knows the recipe and is capable of making the dressing, but thank goodness she hasn't learned to roast a turkey yet because she is just squirrely enough to cook it before the holiday. Hee.

One more thing - since this will be the first year in many years that I am only cooking for 4 [4! can you believe it? It is usually around 12 - but 4! Woot!] we have instituted a constest for Thanksgiving Day. A $20 gift card goes to the person that dresses the goofiest for dinner. Pretty inventive, right? I figured we aren't going to dress up, jeans just don't seem Thanksgiving-y enough and we all love a good, fun contest.

I will post pics [maybe] and let you all vote. Unless there is an obvious clear cut winner [like, say Pooldad in high heels and a boa?] I will let blogland pick the winner. :D

I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving!

Quiet Little Angry

Skippy is not happy. And LOOK! it took me less then a month to post cranky.

At the beginning of every school year we are asked to sign a form that allows our children to be photographed in the public school atmosphere. The purpose of this is for use in vocational videos [to use in the county], the yearbook, class activities, etc. Nowhere does it mention that your child can be photographed for professional purposes for RESALE. I sign this because the candid shots and the team photographs in the yearbook are nice to have for the kids.


We returned home from the Marching Band Dinner Banquet tonight with a lovely picture taken of our oldest - full band uniform regalia, marching at competition. This picture is gorgeous and literally brought tears to my eyes.

Upon inspection I discovered that the picture was professionally taken. Fine and thank you for the gift. Then I noticed that the website was printed on the back of the picture. I went to the website to check it out and there is my baby - along with 300 other pictures of her bandmates - FOR SALE at the photographer's website.

I signed for her to be photographed for school use as stated above - NEVER was anything mentioned that she would be placed on the internet FOR SALE. I would have NEVER, EVER allowed her to be photographed at all had I known that I did not have complete control over what is posted, reprinted or SOLD[?] of her image on the internet.

Granted, she is beautiful in her band uniform and it is quite an innocuous picture [not revealing etc]. But, BUT it is MY CHILD and no one is going to use my child in anyway, shape or form. I did not agree to this and I am madder than heck.

I am so mad and unfortunately it is midnight, otherwise this gentleman would be getting an earful from me regarding posting MY CHILD's picture on the internet for SALE.

I know not all of you have kids, but you have to understand what a violation this is. People are welcome to go and make their living - doing what they do - but these are minor children and they should not be allowed to violate the agreement the parents signed at the beginning of the year simply to profit.

Can you imagine if the flag corps parents discover that their daughters are on his website? Believe me - their uniforms nowhere near cover what my daughter's does. They are very pretty and tasteful, but they are basically cheerleading uniforms. Cute and with a purpose, but I don't think the flag corps Moms I know signed up for this either.

I hate, hate, hate this.

UPDATE: I spoke to the photographer this morning [Saturday] and although he was a bit surprised by my request he did remove her picture. :D

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Do a Gal a Favor!

Everyone knows of my undying admiration for my pal Yvo, yes?
I could expound on this and add that she has a spectacular blog [two! in fact] or I could mention that she is a great writer and she's funny and loving and kind or I could simply blather on for pages about what an awesome cook she is....but that would be gushing and knowing her and knowing that all that unabashed flattery would just go straight to her head - Well, we just don't really want that now, do we? ;D
Edited to add: Oh and here is the link [scroll down until you see the pic - is too the right link] to the original recipe, because did I mention she is demanding too? giggle.
So, in light of the fact that I forgot her birthday [some friend I am, right?] I am asking all six of you who read my blog to please, please, please go over HERE and vote for her amazing recipe. The site received 150 entries but only 27 made it into the finals and Yvo's was one of them!!! No sign up is neccessary - just click on the link [please?] and find her recipe - it is listed under "Yvo" and it is a beef over rice dish.
I would love to see her win. Now please go vote! It only takes a second!

Oh, and Yvo? I don't beg for just anyone, okay? But [evidently] I am not above stealing pictures from your blog....heehee!

The Next Time. . .

[I am Hermione, feel my wrath]
This one huffs around and says we don't do enough for her will you PLEASE remind her that I made fried rice for her bento box at 4:30 am in the morning?

Will you?

[She is a great kid, don't get me wrong. We could not ask for more. We attended her NHS inductions last night.]

Seriously though, cooking at 4:30 am? Uh......

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Our First Bento Pictures

Okay, I admit, not as pretty as Yvo's [at feistybento], but well balanced I think! It is a little too green in the top picture, but we ran out of cherry tomatoes making our earlier bentos this week. The kids made their own and this is the youngest's. I think it is pretty neat and they love it.
Top bento: [clockwise] ranch dip, green pepper, cucumber and celery
Bottom bento: [clockwise] homemade chocolate chip cookies, dill pickles, potato rolls with peanut butter and mix nuts. In the middle is a little bear bottle with honey for the sandwiches and nuts.
We also ran out of grapes - so she will stash an applesauce in her bento bag. The older will be taking the same veggies in the top box, but will have fried rice [made by Mom!] in her bottom bento.]
Wish me luck on the fried rice.
Oh, and Yvo [feistyfoodie]...we seriously need to talk about your birthday - which I totally missed AND the date you were born. I do thank you, thank you, thank you for the Momma feisty post tho'. She is so great! [Heck, I want your whole family. Can I borrow them for my birthday next year?]

Recipe Wednesday - CHEQ

V-8 Vegetable Soup
1 Large Jug of V-8 Juice
1 16 oz bag of frozen vegetables
1 half head of cabbage - chopped bite size
1. Put all ingredients in a dutch oven, mixing well.
2. Bring to a boil; lower heat and simmer. Cover.
3. Simmer for approximately 2 hours or until cabbage is soft and translucent.
Serves 5 with a bit of leftovers.
-This can be made in a crockpot on low, but you need to add about another half of a bottle of the juice as it tends to evaporate during cooking. Set on low for 6 hours. [No need to bring it to a boil.]
-You can add [dried] cheese tortellini during the last half hour of cooking [either method] - but it doesn't need it, really.
C - Cheap to make [cabbage @ $1.00, veggies @1.00 and V-8 @ 3.50 = $5.50]
H - Healthy - V-8 and veggies? Yep!
E - Easy - [seriously, right?]
Q - Quick - Quick to prepare! And it smells so good cooking.
This sounds like a meh! sort of recipe, but you would be surprised at how delicious it is and how much kids love it. It gets it's kick from the V-8. Serve with a grilled cheese sandwich. Yum!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Kilroy Was Here

Does anyone get this?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Assistance needed, please!

Have any of you ever sent anything to Russia?

I have a few questions if you can answer them:
  • How long does it take to get to where you sent it in Russia?
  • What kind of restrictions are there on food? etc.
  • Do you have to pay a customs fee if the box is full of gifts?
  • Is the postage really prohibitive? I don't particularly care, just wondering.
  • What would you like to receive if you were in a foreign country and missing home at the holidays?

Thanks for any and all help. I will be thinking about this for a while, but I want to start assembling this box soon as I want it to arrive to be enjoyed before Christmas.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Trixie Bird What's The Word?

This is our Trixie Bird.
According to her colors/plummage Miss Trixie may actually be a Mister, but we aren't quite sure. She answers just fine to "Trixie Bird" so it is all good.
She was a gift from the gang to me, except we all [me included] forgot just how allergic my doctor informed me I was to bird feathers and the deritus they kick up in their cages. She now resides in the youngest's bedroom, but she chats with me all day long. She is just up the stairs from where I normally am, and she will cheep, chirp and whistle to get my attention. She always chats when I go up to take a nap around 1 pm. It is her "have a nice nap" cheep I guess.
The neatest thing about Trixie is she is an avian alarm clock. Heaven forbid someone sleep past the 7 am hour in this home during the week. She starts her chripy talk to let someone [me!] know that we need to get a move on, because "you humans have to appreciate that breakfast is to be eaten and you understand peoples...there is not one, but two busses to be caught. Now get up!" She is so funny. She also understands the concept of the weekends. She will give a hesitant "cheep" or whistle at 7 am on a Saturday, but it ends quickly and she falls back to snooze. She knows that our real business is the five day week and not to be noisy on those days we get to sleep in. She is good that way. However the bird does not understand holidays. It took her a good two weeks to appreciate that summer vacation had started - now hush up bird we are sleeping here. Can't wait for that two week Christmas vacation coming up!
Some people are surprised to learn that cockatiels are known to talk, but of the two we have had neither has. It doesn't mean they don't mimic or try really hard. Our first cockatiel was a bit older than Trixie and she could mimic any whistle that we did after a bit of practice. She had my husband's "I am home" whistle down pat - to the point that we would mistake her whistle for him walking in the door. She was cheeky. [Her name was Grace-we miss her].
Trixie loves to mimic me calling her name and when I say "Trixie Bird what's the word?" she tootles it off. She doesn't so much say it as the cadence is there. They are interesting pets as they aren't quite as snuggly as dogs and cats, but they sure do have their own personality and give kisses and need attention just as much as our four legged friends.
This is posted because I love the picture my daughter took and hey, she is a great pet! I wish she could be by me all day as she is a hoot to talk to, but I cease to breath if I am around her too long. I do go in each day to visit with her and she has a whole routine she must complete when I go into the bedroom. It involves showing off all her toys [you can see them in the picture] and running the gauntlet of perches. It is the same all the time and really cute.
I thought you all might like to see her too.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Guest Post!!!

Hello! It's me, Skippy Mom's youngest. I am excited!. This year, the day after Thanksgiving we're going to put up our Christmas trees!! Yah! Me and my family are actually doing it a lot differently this year. This weekend me and my mom are going to start making ornaments. My mom already started getting presents! Some of them are big and some of them are small . But, whatever the size, all Christmas is about to me is being with my family. I do have to admit I do like getting presents, don't get me wrong. Some kids will just go gimme gimme and it gets on my nerves. Well, speaking out of my point of view anyways! Hee, Hee. I hope all of you have a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner. And since it's not Thanksgiving yet, Happy Thanksgiving and an early Merry Christmas!

- Skippy Mom's Youngest!

[gratuitous picture posted by SkippyMom attempting to cover all 3 holidays in one post]]

Friday, November 14, 2008

Bento SWAG has arrived!

[please click for the most awesome larger image and to experience my gluttony.
Yvo? you can just hush up now]

Wow! What more could a girl ask for?
The Muppets [which I also found out you can buy at Costco - thank you Amy!], a great article detailing how not to repair your own lawn mower "in house" AND my Bento showed up today?

Slap me silly Martha and call me for dinner 'cause this Friday is just getting better and better.

That is all.
I think I need a nap.
[Note: This post was written for the pure enjoyment of Pooldad, who is languishing at work. See you later honey!]

Because I Usually Do Small Motor Repair in My Bedroom or Why the Internet Amuses Me So

Yes, yes my tadpoles. When I feel as though I need to clean my lawnmower I take it to my master bedroom. Oh, and for fun? I smoke while I am doing it.

Friday is just turning out to be a BANNER day for me folks.

You Aren't Leaving this Blog Without A Smile on Your Face

Another one of my new found blog loves over at EONYC clued me in on the well known secret that yes, Skippy, you CAN watch the Muppets on YouTube.com.

Can I just tell you my whole week, nay, dare I say MONTH was made?

If this does not make your Friday a much happier place to be then you are:

1. Either a much, much younger person then I am [although our kidlets get a kick out of it crankypants so don't pull the ageism card on me buster] or. . .
2. You really are the aforementioned crankypants or even, perhaps. . .
3. You have no sense of humor or imagination whatsoever. Which would make me sad, but not when I get to watch this:

Knowing the six people that may be reading my blog today I know I caught you smiling! HA! Happy Friday y'all. Now try to go around work today not singing "Mahna na na"! LOL. Is there [really] anything better than this? :D um...don't answer that in comments please. Don't make me come out there and moderate.

PS - No PoolDad - I did not put the "Beaker's Mimi" up here. Asthma attack inducing videos are not conducive to times when you are not in residence. tyvm.

Equal Time

So you don't think I favor our youngest [from the previous posts] we do actually have another daughter - TA DA! Can those of you who remember her believe how much she has grown? She is taller than Momma at this point. Oh, and why did Momma pick this picture? Because this is how she goes fishing. No poles and nasty hooks for my girl. No siree. She is all about that ziploc bag and bait, baby. That is how she caught her fish [ahem, minnow?] Which, if you can't tell from the expression on her face, she is making friends with.
Hence why we refer to her as our very own Dr. Doolittle. Our future Veternarian

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Just A Dab Will Do Ya!

This is what our youngest daughter's hair looks like on a normal day [sans bow of course]:This is what happens when you ask Mommy to mousse you up and throw in a few curlers:

Isn't it great? She was thrilled. Can you tell?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Wednesday's Recipe

1 can chunk ham
2 cups broccoli florets, cooked
2 cups shredded swiss cheese
1 tbsp prepared mustard
1 tsp lemon juice
1 can crescent rolls [8 crescent rolls]
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. On a cookie sheet lay crescent rolls [fat side overlapping] in a circle and make a star pattern, with points out. Our youngest says it looks like a sun when you get done. Put aside.
3. In a large bowl combine all ingredients [breaking up ham into bite size pieces]. I don't usually measure anything - I like mine a little more mustardy [word?]...so I might put a little more in.
4. Spoon mixture onto the crescent rolls in a circle covering the fat part [towards the center.
5. Pick up the pointy ends and wrap around the mixture, tucking under to seal.
6. Bake in the oven at 375 degrees until golden brown. Approximately 13 minutes.
Folks, it just does not get any easier then this. You don't have to serve rolls - look crescents! No salad - hey broccoli! - the meat and cheese? It's in there.
It is all good folks. All good. Quick, easy and cheap! Three things I love.
It reheats well too, although we rarely have leftovers.
P.S. The picture shows a double batch made with a can of the LARGE 6 piece butter crescent rolls. This was for when we had company - but I usually make it with the 8 regular size crescent rolls. Also, store brand crescents work just as well. You don't have to spend the extra to be all Pillsbury. :D

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

As IF....

This is the sleep of the young.
When did I lose the ability to sleep like this?
Because I am telling you now if I could sleep like THIS I would be a whole other Skippy.This picture was taken after an early morning of horseback riding.
[6:30 am!!]
She actually slept in this position for 3 hours.
I was jealous.
And cranky.

Who is that Masked Man?

Or it should say "Who is that non icon bearing follower"?
Please refer to my my side bar.

That would be my delightful husband whom I usually refer to as "SkippyDad" or "SkippyHusband" depending on the timbre of my posts.
He is now going to be known as "Pooldad" as that is what he picked. All the goofy comments from Pooldad? Yep! That would be my hero. Awwwww
Seems Mr. Man has gone and signed up to Blogger and is now following my blog.
He doesn't have a blog yet, but I am hoping to help him set one up because he is actually the one with the best swimming pool customer stories [anyone remember those? giggle]

Isn't he cute?