Friday, June 29, 2012

High Five for Friday! (Week 9)

Linking up to give you give highlights from my week:

1. I. am. not. at. home. Really.

Didn't actually think I was going to pull it off this year. I go to this camp in Nebraska every summer (this might be the 12th year!). With all the help my geriatric parents have been needing...  I wasn't sure this would happen!
My mid-life crisis car... But the guys at my oil changing place
said, "That wasn't much of a mid-life crisis."
Pro: The Angsty Teen & friend watched movies w/headphones on for about 2 1/2 hours of the drive.
Con: The drive is 7 1/2 hours long.

Pro: We listened to five hours of The Biebs w/a few dozen plays of "Call Me Maybe" thrown in.
Con: We listened to five hours of The Biebs.

It was fine for a while...(But, seriously, why would you actually record a song about the nut job who claimed to be having your baby? Too much publicity for her if you ask me. Justin, who advises you on this stuff?)

2. I am cooking for lots of people! I love to cook and that's what I do at camp. I've been cooking for both junior high and senior high camps for the past few years. So much fun.

Pro: Camp started last night and I am cooking for about 65 people.
Excited about helping....
Con: The Angsty Teen is not a camper 'til next week... she is helping me in the kitchen. I'm sure this will go well.
Helping me make some delicious M&M cookies!
I will give you the details on Tuesday.

3. I am having great coffee this week! 

Pro: I am not totally roughing it at camp. I cook in an air conditioned kitchen, sleep in an air conditioned house... and I brought all the things necessary for a great cup of coffee in the morning.
Con: It is over 100 degrees here and I still spend a bit of time outside.
These things make my life so much better.
4.  Yesterday was June 28.

Pro: It was my half-birthday!
Con: Six months away from 50. It's hard to believe I'm really that old. I definitely don't feel that old.

This is me aproned up and hair pulled back. Ready to cook! (And since the Stern German is very concerned about us getting dehydrated... here's my glass!)
Definitely looking oldish...
5. I cooked up a great meal earlier this week before I left town.

Pro: We thoroughly enjoyed the food.
Con: We thoroughly enjoyed the food!

My geriatric mother is concerned about the Stern German. Poor guy, how will he get along without his family for two weeks? What has she been smoking? Getting along without the Angsty Teen will not be difficult... I should be so lucky....and as much as I would like to think he needs me, I know he will be fine. He is very self-sufficient.

Pretty sure he is really happy about being home with his dog... well, as happy as he ever gets. He can be the king of his castle, as it were. He is free to scratch, spit, and talk as smart as he chooses. (I would tend to argue that this is really no different than his every day life... but I am sure he would disagree.)
Such a well-balanced meal
This dinner consisted of barbecued ribs (browned them in the oven, cooked them in the crock pot, broiled them to caramelize the sauce... sounds like I knew what I was doing!), Cheesy Potatoes (that was easy - still had a pan of them in the freezer from earlier this month), and White Bean & Spinach Stuffed Peppers.

There were leftovers for my geriatric parents and the Stern German. That is called killing at least two proverbial people who tick you off with one meal birds with one stone. Food for everyone. And, those potatoes are full of artery-clogging goodness for whomever might require that... 

Have a great weekend! 

Thursday, June 28, 2012

I am an idiot...

Though the Angsty Teen has told me this repeatedly... and hinted at it with both verbal and nonverbal cues... I never really believed it... However, I'm afraid it is true. I am an idiot. Really.

I realized this last night.

I didn't start out the night as an idiot- in my opinion. I guess I slowly transitioned to that state....

Yesterday when the Angsty Teen said she wanted a pink stripe in her hair I didn't say I would do it. In fact, I just told her that might be fun... and no, I didn't tell her to call the saloon... wait, make that salon... I merely said, "What a fun idea. I wonder if salons do that?" To which she replied, "I will call Xpressions!"

(Seriously, I hate that name... sounds like a porn shop... how hard would it have been to put an "E" in front of that... Didn't they have enough money to buy a vowel?)

I digress... so she called them (only because it was her idea) and they said that they only did the clip on pink hair inserts and feathers... no dyeing. Dang.

Since the Angsty Teen likes me sometimes but seriously considers me an idiot most of the time, I really didn't think she would ask me to do the dyeing. So, in my defense, I was really caught off guard when she started by being sweet... and then, wham, she whacked me up side the head with the request.

I said...."maybe"...I thought we could go to Walmart and look at products... hoping for something really easy. This is what she found.
A semi-permanent one. I was pretty sure this was a bad plan, but...

She bought the kit.... and was so sweet... so sure I could do it... that I. said. yes.

I truthfully did not think I could mess it up. I thought it was idiot-proof. Although in dealing with the Angsty Teen and anything slightly permanent... look out.

Side note: I forgot how much she hates her straight teeth. Someday I will show you a "before" picture... that kid seriously looked like she could have had a walk-on part in the Twilight movie. Now her teeth are WONDERFUL and perfectly straight... and all she does is complain that they are "too perfect"...

A stripe... that sounds pretty simple... but when push came to shove she didn't really want a stripe.... she wanted a swath. I would have put a small stripe from the temple back. She wanted a wide swath back by her neck so when she put her hair up it would show nicely.

Got it done... helped her rinse it out because as much as I dislike the bathroom floor and the sink in the upstairs bathroom,  I am not in a financial position to replace it them. Got the swath rinsed out... and I left so she could shower.

Soon, thereafter, I heard weeping and wailing... screams, actually. The noise coming from the upstairs could quite easily be heard in the living room even with the door shut... and with my ears plugged... and with me loudly saying "La la la la la I am not listening to you."

This was all about the fact that the swath looked purple instead of pink. " It's not pink!" "It's purple!" "I hate purple!" "It was supposed to be pink!" "I told you we should have bleached it first." (Yeah, that would have been a great idea....) "I hate it!" "I knew it wouldn't turn out." "I don't have any purple clothes!" "I hate purple!"

Those of you with boys.. or with small daughters..or with non-angsty girls... or with no children at all that think that your children would never be this angsty.... Good luck. I hope you are right.

Told her to go to bed.... this was obviously not a good time to deal with it... I drank a glass of wine.

This is really all her own fault. Why would she ask me, the Idiot Mother, who has aging eyes, and had been sipping wine for an hour to do this to her hair?

I know, I am the adult. I should have listened to Nancy Reagan....*

Today we were at a gas station and I heard the Angsty Teen tell a friend, "I thought it was purple... but look how pink it is!" Giggle giggle, laugh laugh, hahaha.
The Wide Swath
This is the Happy Angsty Teen.... not sure if that is even a real phrase... if it is, it's probably one you won't read on this blog again anytime soon.
Look at those beautiful teeth! 
These are the folks I am linking up with today! Check 'em out.
Bassgiraffe's Thoughts Thursday Blog HopObviously MARvelous

*"Just say 'no!'"

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Oh, How Pinteresting!

Time to link up with Michelle from The Vintage Apple to tell you what I loved on Pinterest this week!

Here goes:
A few months ago I had one of my library moms complaining and complaining to me about how hard up they were... and then she pulled out her new iphone. Seriously?
Source: via Sally on Pinterest
I pinned these... White Bean and Spinach Stuffed Peppers...
Source: via Sally on Pinterest

And then I made them! They were delicious. I wrote about it yesterday for Tasty Tuesday. I would definitely make these again. Loved them!
My version
This looks clever.... and easy... and cute. But I never picture balloons as being all that clean...

Ingenious! If I did this I would be able to find my makeup... if I put it back on the board...

Not sure if this works... but, would Martha lie? I mean about this? I don't know either...
Homemade chalkboard paint... choose your color!
In closing, I just want you all to know what a kind and thoughtful friend I am...

Happy Pinning!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Tasty Tuesday!

Thought I would link up with these Tuesday folks again:

Click here for a Frosty Paws recipe for your dog!

Well, the above button worked before.... it even worked when I previewed this post.... guess you should just go to 33 Shades of Green to view this link up.

Yesterday I took my dad to physical therapy at the hospital... it is 20 minutes where I just sit in the waiting room.... so nice.. . some days it is the only peace and quiet I think I get.

I looked at the magazines there and I saw a Woman's Day. Haven't looked at one of those in ages... found this recipe for Cheesy Stuffed Peppers with White Beans:
Source: via Sally on Pinterest

I remembered that I had four yellow peppers in the fridge and I needed to use them up before I head out of town later this week. Also, the Stern German was supposed to be meeting with a dietician after work today... thought I should be able to show that I can whip up a tasty, low-fat side dish (meal?)!

Nope wouldn't count as a meal... no meat. I did think of adding some grilled chicken to the mixture, but decided they looked perfect without that.

Since I take my dad to Walmart NEARLY EVERY DAY... I thought that I would pick up the spinach and white beans that I needed to make these peppers.

Click here for the Woman's Day's recipe. This is how mine looked:
Thought they turned out pretty good!
The recipe told me to heat up my broiler. I only use it on the low setting... and I still pretty much burn everything. The key is leaving the oven door open a bit... apparently.

I cut the peppers in half, cleaned 'em up, and broiled them on both sides with a little oil and salt/pepper. (Scraping them out without pulling off the stem part was a pain...)

I followed the directions for the amount of broiling time. I know... hard to believe.

Heated up my pan. Was only going to add half the onion, but thought I would go ahead and follow the recipe! Novel concept, I know. 

I sauteed the onion and was about to add the garlic, but remembered I had a zucchini I needed to use up. I was really close to following this recipe.

This is how it usually goes. I really do intend to follow a recipe.. but my ingredients just don't pan out... haha...

So, I added some diced zucchini and cooked it for about 3-4 minutes then added the garlic like the recipe said.  
onions, zucchini, garlic
Next I added the package of spinach. It sure looked like a lot of spinach...  The recipe said to take the stems off the spinach... didn't take time to do that... it was fine.

That was a lot of spinach to add!

But it cooks down to nothing.
Turned off the heat. Added the rinsed and drained beans... seriously, who knew cannellini beans were so big. Probably should have had smaller ones, but it turned out okay. Added the lemon juice.
Added beans and juice from half a lemon.

Added the cheese... but I didn't have mozzarella. I used a little cheddar with the Parmesan cheese. Filled the peppers.

Sprinkled a little extra Parmesan on top. Baked until the cheese was melty.
This was the meal... 
I had extra cheesy potatoes I had thawed out and baked and I cooked ribs in the crock pot. Such a BIG dinner... the Stern German was happy... there was real meat.... and lots of it! 

The Angsty Teen was happy... carbs! Okay... neither of them were probably what YOU would describe as happy... but I have low expectations of happy.

Oh, and Kati at Incorporating Color has a fantastic looking recipe for Baked Polenta with Chicken Sausage and Mushrooms on her blog today. Yum.

Let me know if you have been cooking up something good!

Monday, June 25, 2012

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (Week 9)


I've done this eight times already? Time flies...apparently I'm having more fun than I thought. :)

Linking up with Kati and Kate to bring you The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of my weekend!
Incorporating Color
The Good:
I was able to go to the Stern German's family reunion... yeah, I guess that's good.  I haven't been to it in years since I am usually cooking for about 100 people at a camp when they have this reunion. For my contribution to the evening I made a macaroni salad and...I made sangria!
The wonderful ingredients
Sangria in the making!                                      
                           official sangria container

The Stern German cooked the main meal...
in a garbage can. 

Well, in two garbage cans. (There were over 50 people there!) We call it a Polish Luau. Should probably be called a Redneck Luau. You know you're a redneck if you cook your grub in a garbage can...

There are beer cans in the bottom of the garbage can... (definitely a Redneck Luau... they used the cheapest beer out there!) then a grate... then bags of veggies (potatoes, carrots, corn, etc,) and bags of cased meats (hot dogs, bratwurst, ring bologna, kielbasa, etc.).

Here's a picture of the cook... He looks a little too happy...
He realized he was endangering his stern image so he wanted me to retake the picture:
Yep, much better, Stern German... and you got the trademark thumbs up going for you.

Then the garbage can sits over an open fire for an hour and a half...
Then you dump it out and eat. It's really good food!
The Bad:
The Stern German has a brother.... that looks  a lot like him....but, thankfully, I think my German is a little less crazy... look at that, he doesn't even look stern. Wow, that's two pictures in one night of a Less-Than-Stern German... The world is probably coming to an end.
Maybe the Stern German's brother forgot his meds...
The Ugly:
This boy thought he was Batman... Guess what? He's really not Batman. He is the Stern German's first cousin once removed... It might have been cute if he was seven... but I think he was 17. You can choose your friends, but not your relatives.... but, really.

I told the Angsty Teen that she cannot marry this boy... and not just because they are second cousins.
Another Ugly:
Tried this for the first time. Ugly, ugly, ugly. Loved it more than the sangria... well, maybe not... but it was absolutely delicious. It isn't gluten free... but if that doesn't matter to you, you might wanna grab one of these, pour it over ice, and give it a try.
New favorite summer drink!
Okay, that is it for my weekend. Hope you had a good one, too!

What was good, bad, or ugly in your weekend?

Friday, June 22, 2012

High Five for Friday! (Week 8)

The week is over and I am linking up with Lauren to give you the the highlights of my week!

1. I heard good things.
Kati is making friends and discovering her new hometown.
She is an official Nebraskan.
2. I made good things.
We called this batch Belize.
Yep, got to make salsa with a friend. We have gone through the entire alphabet naming our batches after Hispanic males. It is so much easier to remember if Salvador was hotter than Louis than to remember if the June 2012 batch was hotter than November 2011. (And, yes, he was!)

Now we are naming them after Spanish speaking countries. So far this has been pretty easy. Belize should be a scorcher! So many peppers. Bring on the sour cream.

3. I ate good things.
Aren't we fancy at our house?
Father's Day appetizers! Yum. Even the Stern German was smiling... well... not really smiling, but not ornery.
T-bones for Father's Day! This actually made him smile... or maybe it was gas....
And... hot fudge brownie sundaes for dessert.
Yep, we are doing a great job of watching his cholesterol... don't worry, the life insurance is paid up... and last I checked I was the beneficiary. It will all be fine.

4. I did good things (with some great people).
90+ degree humid weather is perfect for water and ice cubes.

5. I sang good things.

This is one of the songs that the Angsty Teen likes that is constatly running through my head. I posted this video a while back. I love to watch Jimmy Fallon and his house band with these little kids' instruments.

I hear this song in my head all the time...and I sing along. I know all the words....I am so hip, and with it, and cool....except for the fact that I just used those terms.... that pretty much means I am just old and sad.

How 'bout you? What good things did you do this week?