Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Whip-Stitching Madness

Progress continues.
I have been whip-stitching
like a mad woman.

The many little squares
are forming long strips.

These long strips will be
stitched together into
something that, hopefully,
resembles an afghan.

The pattern is emerging.

The making of That Damn Afghan
continues throughout
My Last Hurrah.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


My house was invaded by
superheroes over the weekend.

Meet Hero of Sparta...

...and Silverine.

I am still laughing at
these two crazies.

This makes up for
the tent fiasco.

Monday, July 27, 2009

My Last Hurrah

This is my last week of real vacation. Next week I head up to school to get my room ready for another new class of kindergartners.

So I am loading up the kids and going to The Hill Country. We will be here and here. It will be time spent with friends and family.

A perfect last hurrah.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Making Me Smile...

These are just a few of the things that brought a smile to my face this week....

The way my aloe vera catches the
light in the kitchen window.

A bundle of new yarn
in earthy colors.

This show.

Letters addressed "craft goddess"...
feed my ego, please.

Crocheted dishcloths.
I have to live up to the
title "craft goddess".

My anniversary present.
The second stone from the top
is fossilized coral.
The Mr. has great taste.

The basil is growing!
We won't discuss the
rosemary or tomatoes.

Man, I love this.

A trip to the salon for a cut...

...and color.
No greys always bring
a smile to my face.

What made you smile this week?

Friday, July 24, 2009

An Amazing Salad

A couple of weeks ago I posted about summer salads. Thank you for all the suggestions. I am anxious to try each of your favorites.

This is a salad that I have made many times. It's a Lia creation. I even refer to it as "Lia's Chicken Salad". It is also known by its alias: Basil
Aioli Chicken Salad.

It is easy, filling, and practically no-cook. I use extra chicken that we have grilled and frozen. All I have to do is defrost it and cut it into bite-sized pieces.

To make the
aioli, I add a big bunch of fresh basil, minced garlic, salt, pepper, and some mayo to the food processor. I like Smart Balance mayo. I think that its flavor is better than regular.

I use that tried and true method of "eyeballing" the amounts. I go by my own taste and the consistency. You want it to be thick but not gloppy.

Pour the
aioli over the chicken and stir to coat. I add a little shredded carrot for color, crunch, and a bit of extra nutrition.

I prefer to serve it on top of salad greens with some cucumber, green pepper, and red onion.

Sun dried tomatoes and
kalamata olives are nice additions.

It might seem excessive, but I also toss in some sliced fresh tomatoes and feta cheese. Then I top it with
Newman's Own Light Balsamic Vinaigrette.

Oh. My. Goodness.
I have been transported to Salad Heaven.

Thursday, July 23, 2009


Nine years.

Not bad for a couple that met
at a Slobberbone show.

I was on a date with a jerk.

The Mr. was my knight in
Levi's and Chuck Taylor's.

We eloped five months later.

Thanks baby...
for all that you do,
all that you are,
and all that we've built.

You're still cool.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

It Was A Good Idea In Theory

It was a good idea in theory: set-up a tent outside and let The Offspring play.

I got out The Boy's new tent and found a nice, semi-shady spot in the backyard. However, there were no instructions included with the tent. That should have been a sign. I persevered and tried to figure it out on my no avail.

Proceed to Plan B.

We have three collapsible play tents that could serve the same purpose. I dug into the hurricane supplies, found the tarp, spread it out, and lined them up. Instant tent condos.

Everything started out so calm.

Peaceful and serene.
We were all happy.

The Boy and The Girl wanted to cook marshmallows. We were missing both fire and the air filled balls of sugar.

Mommy improvised yet again:
We roasted fruit snacks...

...without the fire, of course.
The Boy and The Girl didn't seem to mind.

While The Offspring ate pretend roasted fruit snacks, I took out a hook and some yarn. All was going so well.

Too well.

Silliness entered the picture.

Tents collapsed.
Help was requested.

None was given.

Pleads that were left
unanswered sparked anger.

Which led to taunting.

And more taunting.

And screaming. And crying.

Why? Why did I do this?

A project languishes.

Tents are strewn about
the yard like wreckage.

It is a fact. My children would never survive the wild. Or perhaps the wild wouldn't survive my children.

This is why some animals eat their young.

We are back in the A/C.
And all is quiet.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Get Out Your Mixing Bowls

Here they are: the brownies I mentioned in this week's menu. You will eat these and think, "You have got to be kidding me...there is no way these are healthy."

The ingredients are simple:

Some applesauce, sugar, and vanilla.

Whole wheat flour.
Really. No joke.

Cocoa powder, of course.

A bit of baking soda,
baking powder, and salt.

My sous-chef did the mixing.

Spread the batter evenly.

Sous-chef is serious about his work.
He doubles as quality control.

While the treats bake,
choose a pretty platter.
This one will do.

When cool, cut and stack neatly.

It's OK. You can eat one now.

Or two.

Remember...these are good for you.

"You've Got To Be Kidding Me" Brownies
1 cup apple sauce
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350*

Mix applesauce, sugar, and vanilla.

Add flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

Mix until all ingredients are incorporated.

Pour batter into a greased 8x8 baking dish.

Bake 25-35 minutes, or until a toothpick can be inserted cleanly in the middle.