6.30.2008

Monday Morning Saul, Video Edition

I guess this is a phase, but Saul is obsessed with taking things in and out of containers. I'm hoping it persists long enough to get him to start helping clean up his toys.



He also likes to hit things. A lot.

Monday Morning Saul

B's birthday was this weekend, so my in-laws came down to visit. We had a lovely time and Saul received many presents. We have noticed that he gets presents at all gift giving occasions, as well as most non-gift giving occasions. B got a couple of presents too, although not as many as Saul.





6.27.2008

Recipe Friday

Lemon Saffron Tea Bread

1/8 tsp saffron threads, crumbled
1/2 cup milk
1 tbsp yeast
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup warm water
3 3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup blanched almonds
1/2 cup unsalted butter (room temperature)
4 eggs
Grated zest of one lemon
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp salt

1. In a small saucepan, sprinkle the saffron over the milk. Heat just until tiny bubbles form along the edge of the pan and then remove from the heat and let stand about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, sprinkle the yeast and a pinch of sugar over the warm water. Stir to dissolve and then stir in 1/2 cup of flour. Cover and let stand until bubbly, about 30 minutes. In a food processor, combine 1/2 cup of flour with the almonds and process until smooth.


ooooh, saffron....fancy....


2. Beat together the butter and sugar until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well. Beat in the zest, juice, salt, and 1/2 cup of flour. Add the yeast mixture, saffron milk, and nut flour. Beat until smooth, about 1 minute. Add the rest of the flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until a thick, fluffy batter is formed.

3. Use a spatula to scrape batter into a greased, 10-inch fluted tube pan. Cover and let rise until doubled in bulk, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Twenty minutes before baking, heat oven to 350.

4. Bake in the center of the preheated oven until golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 40-45 minutes. Cool in pan for 10 minutes and then invert onto a rack to cool completely. Serve with fromage blanc or strawberries crushed with orange liqueur.


Verdict: I didn't have any fromage blanc or strawberries or Grand Marnier, so we had to settle with plain whole-milk yogurt, which we stole from the Saul's breakfast stash. We are horrible parents like that. I guess the cake was okay. It was kind of dry, so I probably overcooked it. The lemon zest and fresh lemon juice definitely gave it a bright spring kind of taste, but I could have made a lemon pound cake for much less trouble that would have tasted just as good and wouldn't have been dry. I think the most telling thing is that after a few days, 3/4 of it was dumped in the compost pile.

But at least I got to play with saffron!

Something disappointing

My object from the Something Store arrived.

It is most definitely not an iPod.

6.26.2008

Declaration

My life would be incomplete without YouTube.

Pit Wars

Hilarious.

Poetry Thursday

Crescendo

Driving to my Doctor in July, I sit
With my feet on the dashboard, calves
Glinting in the white heat, a new lexicon crawling
Around the corners of a napkin as I try to write
Against my thighs. Above our red Toyota
The branches and leaves of Ireland have kindled
With the sky, a Monet where there was
once a C├ęzanne. My mother seeks out
The straightest routes, allows the car
To ebb the smooth middle of the road as
The wind laps the rim on the window, like
a staccato to the music of Cat Stevens.
I think she loves the passion of over-taking,
The thunder of engines flirting on opposite sides
of the road. The corners of her eyes
will sharpen. Her stomach will tense and flatten.
Lips taut, she takes the reigns of our
Lives with both hands, and as I
Close my eyes she delivers me
to the darkness just before birth, the pulse
of gears aroused, swelling, like the hum
induced by speed. We slide along
the vein of mom's road, our bodies moving
through the air like seeds through a pistil,
and when I can feel my hair whipping my jaw again
I open my eyes and glance at my mother.
Strands of her hair tucking in the salty tattoo of the wind,
her elbow angling over the lip of the door.
We descend, sending loose chips
flying like progress. She drives faster and faster
As if she is driving to save my life.
We are falling through the green of Ireland
And mom has the gear-stick in her fist
As if it is the strong branch of a tree to cling to.
I change stations on the radio,
Touching her fingers.

-Leanne O'Sullivan

6.25.2008

Then and now

At 1 month old:

At 9 months old:

It's hard to believe they are the same two babies.

When they first met, Saul spent the entire visit trying to nurse on Laney's head. Laney didn't even notice that Saul was there. Now, Laney tries her best to hold Saul's hand and stick her fingers in his mouth, while he is much more interested in trying to get some grass into his mouth.

6.24.2008

Slow news day

There must not be much going on when this is on CNN's headline RSS feed.

Here is the most idiotic part:
One way to boost your energy naturally is develop a balanced sleep schedule. According to the National Institutes of Health, most adults need seven to eight hours of sleep a night.
They write that as if parents of young children had a choice about how long they get to sleep.

And I just don't like the tone of the whole article. There is already a ridiculous standard of motherhood in this country and women are driving themselves under to achieve it. And now it's inappropriate for us to indulge in some caffeine to stay afloat?

I have two words for the authors of this: Bite. Me.

Books

It is so hard to get any reading done these days. I find it very frustrating. I am accruing books at my usual rate, but they are not being processed. Ahh, well, it's just one of the many ways that being a mom is making me dumber.

Anyway, here are a couple that I have managed to finish lately.

Look Me In the Eye
by John Elder Robison
This is a memoir by the brother of Augusten Burroughs, who wrote the hilarious Running With Scissors. It talks about growing up with Asperger's Syndrome but not being diagnosed until middle age. The book was a little boring and meandered without going anywhere very interesting. It could have done with a good editor. However, the symptoms he describes are just familiar enough to be a little bit disquieting.

Wickett's Remedy
by Myra Goldberg
Most of this story takes place in Boston during the Spanish Influenza epidemic of 1918. The plot is, well, non-existent. It starts with a poor shop girl named Lydia and then splits into her story and the story of QD soda. Kind of. Nothing is ever resolved, threads are left hanging, and there is a sense of randomness about the whole thing. The only interesting thing is the comments that show up in the margins. They are the whisperings of the dead. They correct and add information to Lydia's story. I love the idea. I also became quite invested in Lydia's story, and was disappointed that it went nowhere.

Next up is Petropolis by Anya Ulinich. I'm reading this one for the Bryant Park Project book club. I haven't heard any reviews on it, so I have no idea what I'm in for.

6.23.2008

Monday Morning Saul Part Two

I can't get enough pictures of him sleeping...the older he gets, the more time I spend standing at his crib just watching him and marveling at his existence.



Monday Morning Saul

It is ridiculous how much Saul loves peaches. And he doesn't want them cut up into little manageable pieces. He wants to eat them like grownups do. Which is fine with me, as long as he's naked and about to be dropped into the bathtub.



The only problem is that one peach was not enough. After he finished sucking it down to nothing, I took away the pit and sat him in the water. I'm not sure he has forgiven me yet.

6.20.2008

In keeping with my theme for the day

Baconhenge.

Beautiful. Let me quote my favorite sentence:
Let bacon stand in for the sacrificed Year King, French toast for the Grain Goddess, the eggs in the frittata for the Cosmic Egg, and the vegetables for the bountiful Earth on which we live.
The best thing is that I'm not even seeking this out. It was on NPR this morning.

J, you're going to love this

Someone I work with came over a few minutes ago with a suspicious smile and a piece of chocolate and said, "here, try this."

Being the trusting, unsuspicious person that I am, I took a big bite. "Wow, this is good," I exclaimed. "What is it?"

Bacon. Chocolate.

Together.

Delicious.

I think she was disappointed in my reaction.

Overheard

At daycare this morning:

Teacher: Hannah, say chuh

Hannah: chuh, chuh, chuh

Teacher: Good, now what do you have to eat? (gesturing toward Hannah's bag of chex cereal)

Hannah: I have a bag of sex.

Teacher: I give up.

Recipe Friday - Father's Day Picnic

Spice-Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Mustard Barbecue Sauce

Sauce:
2 bacon slices, finely chopped (I used 4 slices. Mmmm...bacon)
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup prepared yellow mustard
5 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

Pork:
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
3/4 teaspoon salt (double this)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
2 (1-pound) pork tenderloins, trimmed
Cooking spray

1. Prepare grill.

2. To prepare sauce, cook bacon in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat 4 minutes or until almost crisp, stirring occasionally. Add chopped onion to pan; cook 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Add mustard and next 5 ingredients (through 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin) to pan, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 4 minutes or until slightly thick, stirring occasionally.

3. To prepare pork, combine brown sugar and next 7 ingredients (through red pepper) in a small bowl, stirring well; rub mixture evenly over pork. Place pork on grill rack coated with cooking spray. Grill 20 minutes or until a thermometer registers 155° (slightly pink), turning once. Let pork stand 10 minutes. Cut pork crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices.

Verdict: Yum. I was a little bit worried about the tenderloin, because all the spices turned into a black crust on the grill. But it turned out to be a yummy spice crust, rather than a burnt crust. I probably cooked them just a little bit too long, but better a dry tenderloin than getting worms, right? (As it turns out, that's pretty unlikely, but I needed an excuse for overcooking, ok?) The sauce was decent (despite being day-glo orange), but I thought it was a little bit too sweet for my tastes. I like smoky barbecue sauces much better. Although I will admit that it was much better when we had leftovers the next night. Perhaps I should make the sauce a day or two before next time? If I already had the sauce, or (heaven forbid) used a bottled sauce, then the tenderloin would have been a super quick, super easy, super cheap meal. And when you consider it in that light, this was a huge success.

We had it with my sister's excellent potato salad and delicious peaches. It was a perfect summertime picnic. B seemed to enjoy it, but I forgot to ask his detailed opinion. So B, comment please.

6.19.2008

Good news!

I've been hauling my fat ass to the gym for a couple of weeks now. I've given up on trying to go back to my old way of working out. Now, I've decided that if I can just get on the treadmill for 30 minutes, at least 3 times a week, I'll consider that good enough.

Because this having a kid and working thing? It's hard. Much harder than I ever would have expected. What I really need is a live-in nanny. And a live-in maid. And possibly a cook. Oh yeah, and a hot lawn boy.

But I digress.

So this morning I put on some jeans fresh from the dryer and there were a little bit looser.

Underwhelming, I know.

But it's just the little bit of motivation I need to keep it up, despite a fresh new disease that Saul brought me. It's been a long time since any of my clothes felt loose. After Saul was born, I refused to buy new clothes in bigger sizes because that would be giving up. So I've been wearing too tight jeans and big t-shirts for the last several months. Thank god I don't have to dress nicely for work.

But if I lose enough weight, then I am going to go across the street and blow a bunch of money on a cute dress at Anthropologie, and then I am going to try out my strut.

Poetry Thursday

A Jacquard Shawl

A pattern of curly acanthus leaves,
and woven into one corner
in blue block letters half an inch tall:
MADE FROM WOOL FROM SHEEP
KILLED BY DOGS. 1778.
As it is with jacquards,
the design reverses to gray on blue
when you turn it over,
and the words run backward
into the past. The rest of the story
lies somewhere between one side
and the other, woven into
the plane where the colors reverse:
the circling dogs, the terrified sheep,
the meadow stippled with blood,
and the weaver by lamplight
feeding what wool she was able to save
into the faintly bleating, barking loom.

-Ted Kooser

6.18.2008

In which I try very hard not to say any bad words

If you looked out the back door of my garage this morning, this is what you would have seen:

Nice, yes? But if you had looked out that very same door yesterday morning instead of this morning, you would have seen something very different. You would have seen MY (curse word deleted) VEGETABLE GARDEN!

Here is where some of my vegetables are now:

It's not like there are guerrilla workers out building new terraces without my knowledge. You might remember that we had a small incident where one of our walls fell down and took out part of our second floor deck and the whole (curse word deleted) sprinkler system with it. So the landscaping company is back, rebuilding the walls in a different, better, (approved by an engineer this time) way.

But I was told that they wouldn't be tearing out my garden until the end of this week. Last night, I cooked up a pot of green curry chicken. I headed downstairs to get some fresh basil for topping, and was greeted with a torn up pile of dirt. I had been planning on spending last night, tonight, and tomorrow night transplanting the tomatoes and peppers and okra, harvesting the rest of the basil and black-eyed peas, and giving up considering what to do with the squash and zucchini.

I am so furious right now that I don't even care about having a sprinkler system again. Typically when I'm home and there are workers outside, I will offer them Gatorade or water or a bottle of beer (after they are done for the day, at least). But today, NO BEER FOR YOU! BAD LANDSCAPERS!

I am alternating between the urge to throw things at them out of the upper floor windows and wanting to sit down and cry because all of my hard work has been wasted.

6.17.2008

Finally

I just heard someone on NPR say that she was glad gas prices were high and she thinks people should use less.

That might be the first reasonable opinion I have heard in the mass media.

I am particularly bothered by the many voices I hear clamoring for us to drill within our own borders. Environmental concerns aside, it seems like we should save that gas. No matter how you look at it, gas is a limited resource and I foresee much more dire emergencies than wasteful Americans having to dig deeper in their pockets to fill up their Hummers.

In that vein, I have been trying to figure out how to ride my bike to work. I would have to drive to Saul's daycare, which is about a half-mile from my house, but I think I could leave my car there and ride the five miles or so to my office. It would be a nasty half mile or so on a narrow, curvy road, but then I would be in bike-friendly downtown. Any hints or suggestions? I am especially concerned about helmet hair. And how to safely transport my laptop.

Typing

J accidentally (at least I presume; maybe she has an evil master plan) introduced me to Typerracer and now I can't quit. I frequently run queries at work that take a minute or two to complete. Just enough time to get a race in. I never used my MySpace profile before, but now it's a handy way to keep track of my average.

I type 92 wpm, 31 with one hand. I would have never guessed. So now I'm obsessed with getting my average up to 95 wpm. This is my OCD coming out.

Smooth as a...

Thanks to my m-i-l for taking and sending this!

6.16.2008

Father's Day

We had a nice first Father's Day. I got B a book and a CD and Saul got him two books and a felt tie with his hand print on it (Thanks, daycare! It's never too early to start with the tacky arts and crafts!). We went for an evening picnic on the river, and I did all of the dishes for him so he could (theoretically) relax. B had never been around kids much before we had Saul, so I was a little worried about how he would handle it. But he turned out to be a natural. He's much more patient and laid back than I am, and he adores Saul in a way that makes me fall in love all over again every time I see them together.

BTW, that's a peach in Saul's hands/mouth. Once he got a hold of it, we couldn't get it back. It was supposed to be my dessert.

Faker

Here is Saul interrupting his fake crying (he was trying to convince me that he was starving to death and needed a handful of Cheerios) to blow raspberries at me.

6.13.2008

Liberal agenda

I absolutely delight in the irony of a Marxist revolutionary being splashed all over trendy, over-priced baby wear for American middle class kids. The huge majority of Saul's clothes come from hand me downs, garage sales, and clearance racks, but I just couldn't resist this one.

Recipe Friday

This is a recipe that I made at my team build last week. It seemed pretty simple and very tasty, so this is my home attempt:

Chipotle Beef Kabobs with Sour Cream, Lime, and Cilantro Dipping Sauce

Geez, why not just put the entire recipe in the name?

Kebabs:

1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 tbsp chopped chipotles in adobo
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
2 lbs top sirloin, cut into 1 inch cubes

Sauce:
1 cup sour cream
1 tsp cumin
Zest and juice of 1 lime
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
Salt to taste

Kabobs:
  1. Preheat grill
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together lime juice, chipotles, garlic, olive oil, and salt.
  3. Pour over beef cubes and marinate at least 30 minutes
  4. Meanwhile, soak a handful of wooden skewers for about 30 minutes
  5. Skewer a couple cubes of beef on each skewer, then grill for 2-3 minutes on each side until cooked medium.
Sauce:
  1. In a medium bowl, combine sour cream, zest, cilantro, cumin, and lime juice.
  2. Add salt to taste and then refrigerate to allow flavors to meld.
Verdict: The kebabs were good. The chipotles gave them a smoky flavor and they were very tender from being marinated. I'm not sure why my skewers turned black since I soaked them OVERNIGHT, but whatever, I didn't catch anything on fire and that's all that matters.

The sauce is an entirely different matter. Oh lordy, that was some good sauce. I could have just eaten it with a spoon. In fact, I stuck my finger in it several times while I was making the rest of the meal. It takes about 2 minutes to make, but it would be good on salad, vegetables, fish, meat of any kind, hell, prison loaf would probably be excellent as long as it was slathered with this stuff.

So. In summary. Kebabs, eh. Sauce, WOW!

6.12.2008

Poetry Thursday - celebration and lament

Ode to Tomatoes

The street
filled with tomatoes,
midday,
summer,
light is
halved
like
a
tomato,
its juice
runs
through the streets.
In December,
unabated,
the tomato
invades
the kitchen,
it enters at lunchtime,
takes
its ease
on countertops,
among glasses,
butter dishes,
blue saltcellars.
It sheds
its own light,
benign majesty.
Unfortunately, we must
murder it:
the knife
sinks
into living flesh,
red
viscera
a cool
sun,
profound,
inexhaustible,
populates the salads
of Chile,
happily, it is wed
to the clear onion,
and to celebrate the union
we
pour
oil,
essential
child of the olive,
onto its halved hemispheres,
pepper
adds
its fragrance,
salt, its magnetism;
it is the wedding
of the day,
parsley
hoists
its flag,
potatoes
bubble vigorously,
the aroma
of the roast
knocks
at the door,
it's time!
come on!
and, on
the table, at the midpoint
of summer,
the tomato,
star of earth, recurrent
and fertile
star,
displays
its convolutions,
its canals,
its remarkable amplitude
and abundance,
no pit,
no husk,
no leaves or thorns,
the tomato offers
its gift
of fiery color
and cool completeness.

-Pablo Neruda

I had some tomatoes. They were bright, shiny, red on the vine. I picked one a little too early and set it on the windowsill to finish ripening. I went out this morning to pick the other two and savor the deliciousness of having juicy, ripe, salmonella-free tomatoes but they were gone. Not deer, because the plants aren't trampled. Not armadillos, because there are no burrows. Not squirrels, because there was no mess. The tomatoes were simply gone. Missing. No trace that they had ever existed. My garden was undisturbed except for the lack of ripe tomatoes.

Could kids be stealing my tomatoes? That would probably explain why the black-eyed peas were not touched. Perhaps I will conduct a stake out.

Damn kids. Get off my lawn!

6.11.2008

The child who is no longer a baby

Can you tell I haven't had my coffee yet?

When I went out to my car this morning, my next-door neighbor Mr. Hutchison was passing on his morning walk. He took a good look at Saul and then called out "Hi there! Your baby isn't a baby anymore! He's a child!"

Thanks, Mr. Hutchison. What I need first thing in the morning is an elderly man reminding me of the rapid passage of time and inevitability of Saul growing up and leaving me to marry some girl and then the two of them moving far away so that when I have grandchildren I'll never get to see them and then I'll get old and die.

Good morning to you too.

6.10.2008

Snot and other lovely things

Saul is sick again. Not really sick, he just has a cough and a snotty nose, but still. It seems like he's been constantly ill for the last two months. It's hard on him and it's hard on us.

The Milk Nazis said that if he were breastfed, he would never get sick and he would always be happy and his poop would smell like unicorns and rose petals. I suppose they would say that this is my fault for giving him the occasional bottle of formula. They would also say I am abusing him by doing that, which is why they are the Milk Nazis.

When Saul broke out in his plague, we immediately stopped all antibiotics. Which was great for his spots and all, but left him with the same ear infections that we just can't get rid of. So now we are being sent to an ear/nose/throat specialist to check his hearing. I know they will talk to me about tubes, but I just don't think I can deal with putting my baby under general anesthetic for a procedure whose benefits are pretty sketchy.

I just want us all to be healthy again. I suppose this comes along with him going to daycare. If we didn't deal with it now, we would deal with it when he went to pre-school, or Kindergarten, or whenever he started spending time with large groups of people. The only good thing is that it doesn't seem to bother him much. We really got lucky - he's such an easy baby. Last night, his chest was all raggedy when he breathed, and his nose was dripping snot, but after I nursed him and put him in his crib, he just snuggled up to his boppy and went right to sleep without the slightest protest and when he woke up this morning, he chattered happily at his dinosaur until I came in to get him.

Every time he gets sick, I start to think that I am being selfish by going to work and leaving him at daycare all day. But this morning, when I walked into the infant room, he started his usual routine of pushing against my chest and kicking his legs and straining to get down to the floor. When I let him go, he crawled away without even a glance backwards and headed over to the boxes of toys. And then I feel okay again. He's getting what he needs and I'm getting what I need. And if we have to suffer a few runny noses for it, I guess we'll survive.

6.09.2008

Fallen

R.I.P. beautiful variegated ligustrum that shaded the corner of the driveway. You were taken too early by high winds and rot damage that we were unaware of. You will be missed. However, we take comfort in the fact that your dried out leaves will provide lots of brown matter for our compost pile. Even in death, you will enrich my garden.


Monday Morning Saul

I can't believe how fast he's growing up! Here he is looking like a little man in his button down shirt:

I love how he falls asleep all draped over whatever happens to be around:

Nothing is safe now that he can pull up. He even tries to climb when he can find footholds...

And here he is this morning riding in his new toddler car seat for the first time. I'm not sure what was so funny, but the minute I opened the door he started laughing at me.

6.06.2008

The Four Year Plan

I'm still working on my life plan. I had the unfortunate realization that I am turning 30 in four years, so I am focusing on goals that I want to achieve by the time I reach that age.

(by the way, Saul will turn 5 a month after I turn 30. Can you even imagine that? Of course not! Somehow it's impossible to believe that he will ever be anything other than exactly what he is right now.)

My goals have become much less ambitious. I'm old enough to realize now that I will probably not be the CFO of a Fortune 500 company by the time I'm 35, I will not ever be supermodel skinny, and it's unlikely that I will meet and become bff with Lyle Lovett. I think I'm okay with that. My goals are now smaller and more focused on internal achievements. I am more concerned with being an effective wife, mother, and provider, and with living my principles. In effect, I am trying to do a much better job at walking my talk.

The thing that stays at the top of my mind is that B and I are Saul's first and most important role models. It's a huge responsibility, but it makes things easier in a way. It's harder to put things off when I have such a potent reminder of how fast time is passing.

Recipe Friday

Chocolate-mint Bars

Bottom layer:
1 cup all-purpose flour (about 4 1/2 ounces)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup butter, melted
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs, beaten
1 (16-ounce) can chocolate syrup
Cooking spray

Mint layer:
2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup butter, melted
2 tablespoons fat-free milk
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
2 drops green food coloring

Glaze:
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
3 tablespoons butter
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. To prepare bottom layer, lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour and salt; stir with a whisk. Combine granulated sugar, egg substitute, 1/4 cup melted butter, 2 tablespoons water, vanilla, eggs, and chocolate syrup in a medium bowl; stir until smooth. Add flour mixture to chocolate mixture, stirring until blended. Pour batter into a 13 x 9–inch baking pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 23 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out almost clean. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.
  3. To prepare mint layer, combine powdered sugar, 1/4 cup melted butter, and next 3 ingredients (through food coloring) in a medium bowl; beat with a mixer until smooth. Spread mint mixture over cooled cake.
  4. To prepare the glaze, combine the chocolate chips and 3 tablespoons butter in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at HIGH 1 minute or until melted, stirring after 30 seconds. Let stand 2 minutes. Spread chocolate mixture evenly over top. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Cut into 20 pieces.
Verdict: eh. I'm honestly not sure what possessed me to make these - I fully believe that mint is for teeth cleaning products only. To me, these taste like brownies with a layer of Crest. But at least they're pretty. B, a great lover of mint-chocolate chip ice cream, was only mildly impressed, saying that they tasted more like cake then brownies. Probably because this is yet another recipe from Cooking Light, so it doesn't have the enormous amounts of fat required to make a really fudgy brownie. Right now, the plate of them is sitting near the printer at my work and they seem to be disappearing at the standard rate. I sit close enough to eavesdrop, so I will update in Twitter if I overhear any comments.

6.05.2008

Stop it!

My mom and Aunt Nipper with me (center) and my cousins Tim and Kelli circa 1984:

Damn my uterus and the hormones that go with it and make me want another baby already, even though I haven't used up the first one.

My cousin Tim (the one on the left) just had his first child, a baby boy named James Walker Rust. The picture I saw was adorable. And a co-worker came by with her three week old yesterday and I thought to myself "there is no possible way that Saul was ever that small," but he was. And then I wanted another one. One that is too small to shriek and stick a soggy cheerio up my nose when I try to cuddle him.

Someone stop me.

Oh wait, I just remembered how much we're paying for daycare. Problem solved.

Meme

I don't do memes very often, but this seemed like a fun one. Here is how it works:

a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd's mosaic maker.

The Questions:

1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favorite food?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. Favorite drink?
7. Dream vacation?
8. Favorite dessert?
9. What you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. One Word to describe you.
12. Your flickr name

Here it is. Pretty.

Poetry Thursday with plague update

"EVEN ORNAMENTS OF SPEECH ARE FORMS OF DECEIT"

It's 1667. Reason is everywhere, saving
for the future, ordering a small glass of wine.
Cause, arm in arm with Effect, strolls by
in sturdy shoes.

Of course, there are those who venture
out under cover of darkness to buy a bag
of metaphors or even some personification
from Italy, primo and uncut.

But for the most part, poets like Roderigo
stroll the boulevards in their normal hats.
When he thinks of his beloved, he opens
his notebook with a flourish.

"Your lips," he writes, "are like
lips."

-Ron Koertge

I'm sure everyone will be glad to know that Saul's spots are healing. He now looks like we abuse him with pencil erasers - little yellow-green and purple bruises all over.

6.04.2008

Just making you jealous

Here are the things I cooked and ate today at our team build:

Spanikopita triangles
Bakwan
Chipotle beef kabobs with sour cream, lime, and cilantro dipping sauce
Spicy jicama salad lettuce rolls
Roasted red peppers with toasted baguette rounds
Seared oyster mushrooms
Spicy sugarcane shrimp skewers
Pork empanadas
Shrimp piri piri
Chocolate rum cake with cinnamon whipped cream

Don't you wish you worked with me?