Thursday, September 30, 2010

What's Underneath

Just got in from what was *ostensibly* an "Educator's Night" at McWane Science Center, with four friends.  You know - offer door prizes, free food, and an iMax movie, and the teachers come en masse.  That kind of Educator's Night.

So after suffering through processed lunchmeat and chips (the free food), not winning any door prizes (oh, well- the free house cleaning would have been nice!), and deciding that we were starving and didn't really want to stay for the iMax, one of our hip-and-trendy friends we all decided to hit a happening, hip, and posh area of town for some appetizers.

In we go - giddy from a night of laughter and camaraderie - and request a table on the patio.  We settle in, place our order.

I'm definitely out of my element here.  Looking at the slim & trim, perfectly coiffed and highlighted 'do's, trendy outfits.  Everyone "has their game on", as they say.  It's all so - glitzed.  Perfect.  Very southern.  Very wealthy.  Very "in crowd".  I feel like an 8th grader with bad acne and glasses.

Annie notices them first.

At her feet, there are a host of slugs, crawling on the cement flower boxes.  After some deliberation, we decide to just ignore them.

I'm next.  Looking down, about halfway through our munchies, a Big. Juicy. Cockroach. crawls across the patio.  Right. Under. Our. Table.


I didn't say anything - no one else noticed.  (OK, so I told everyone later.  They would have screamed if I had told them while we were eating.  I knew it.)

But it struck me.  Here, in Perfect Land - bugs.  Icky, creepy, nasty bugs.  Right underneath our feet.   Seems like a lesson to me somewhere.  You think?

(Oh, and E, P, A, and L.. . . . .THANKS for a very, very fun night!  I love y'all!)
(How's that for southern?  ;-) 

Friday, September 24, 2010

:chirping crickets:

That's the only sound I hear right now.

The Two. Certain. Someones who were whispering until waaaaaaay too late have finally quieted.

There are 6 Boy Scouts and 2 Dads asleep (I think) in tents in our yard.

An almost 6-year old is asleep in my bed, a consolation prize on the Eve of the Birthday.

One who is full of college-applying, ballet-dancing to-do lists has shut down for the night, and the One who would stay up until midnight reading has closed the chapter and shut off the book light.

It's quiet.

Like this blog.

I've got about 20 posts written in my head - there have been yummy Crock Pot meals, several birthdays and memorable moments - but somehow, at night, I'm spent.  We're in a busy season.  That's what I get for having 4 kids born between August 18th and September 25th, eh?

Tomorrow we ramp up again, with breakfasts, and driving, and parties, and celebrations, and sleepovers, and more celebrations, and orchestras. 

It's a joyfully, stressfully, happily full life. 

And right now. . . . . . . it's quiet.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Tired, much?


Last night, we had an Amazing. Awesome. Fabulous time hanging with some new friends

Until wa-a-a-a-ay past my bedtime.

Today, I went into crisis mode, to get ready for my Kindergarten Science Explorers class that meets at my home one Wednesday a month.

Library, to get books?  Check.

Parent-teacher store, for magnets?  Check.

Lesson plan?  Check.

Piano students rescheduled?  Check.

And then I realized. . . . .

Class isn't tomorrow.  It's next week.

Going to bed early?  DOUBLE-CHECK!

(at least I'm ready ahead of time???)

Saturday, September 4, 2010

It's Legal. . . .and It's Delicious**

Well, folks - when the cat's away, the mice will play. . . . . . with their crock pot, that is!

Y had to work tonight, so for dinner I whipped out a recipe from a great cookbook I got from the library:  "Brinner" French Toast Casserole.   Breakfast for dinner - how fun!

First step:  Spray the inside of your crock pot with non-stick spray.  
Cube a loaf of cinnamon-raisin swirl bread, layer it inside with pats of butter.
(Good thing I went to Aldi's this morning!  It's a bargain at only $1.19 a loaf.)

Next:  The egg mixture.  8 eggs, whole milk, half-and-half, some syrup, a bit of cinnamon.

Pour over the bread cubes.  Smush 'em down a bit, so they get nice and soaked.
Mix together butter, brown sugar, and oats.  Sprinkle this topping over the bread mixture.

. . . then, let the Crock Pot do its magic!  3 hours on high, let it sit for 15 minutes, and. . . .

. . . yummy, cinnamon, easy, French toast flavor!

I served it to the kids with bacon & canteloupe - and there was just a smidge left for Y to have a sample.  A hit!  The only down side - I can't see myself making this for a Sunday breakfast, since I'd have to wake up at 5 to start it.  Might go on our Thanksgiving Day breakfast menu, though!

**Editor's note:  I must explain the title to this post, which was suggested by my kids.  About 6 years ago, my kids interviewed my brother and sister-in-law, who were living in Kabul at the time.  During the interview, Nathaniel found out that there was a Burger King at the military base just outside of the city.  The following is a transcript of the interchange that followed:

"And sometimes, we go on Operation Whopper. . . .we seek out a hamburger!" (my bro)
"Is that legal?" asks wide-eyed Nathaniel.
"It's legal. . . . . and it's DELICIOUS!"  (my brother's amused reply)

Since then, it's been a family joke.  And now. . . you're in on it!**