Saturday, April 26, 2008

10 Surprising Things My Boys Won't Eat

1. Mashed Potatoes
2. Rice - I never make it plain, mostly Risotto and they have only eaten it once. While watching their Dad. Copy cat.
3. Meat - as a sure thing. Sometimes yes. Sometimes no.
4. Tortillas with cheese - without picking the cheese out.
5. Cream Cheese
6. Soup. Nathan will eat Tomato but that's it.
7. Beans - other than Bush's, but who can resist Bush's Baked Beans
8. Bacon. This is pure insanity to me. Who WOULDN'T like Bacon? They at least it in the Turkey burgers.
9. Hot Dogs. Aren't all kids supposed to love Hot Dogs?
10. Brownies. Tried it. I think they are too rich.

~ Rice, Potato, Tortilla, Cream Cheese, Bacon lovin' Mama

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Two Little Girls in a Little Doll House

There is a world that I dreamed of as a little girl. Frequently, that world came to life on a little show called Sesame Street (or Little Rascals - you know, the one where they owned the nightclub and Darla was a flapper?)

This clip is wonderful, you'll probably watch it more than once because you can imagine singing it to yourself while doing dishes or tucking in your daughter.

My boys even like this. I sing it to them and they don't even mind that I am off-key.

Vintage Sesame Street

~ Mama to ... 1, 2 - 2 little boys

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Another Fine Recipe

I just couldn't resist sharing a recipe for turkey burgers. We had these last week and the boys just gobbled them up. Just know that they don't eat a lot of meat and so this is quite an achievement. The recipe is not mine, I got it from "Semi-homemade with Sandra Lee". I don't use a lot of her ideas but I did love this one to pieces and so did the family.

Apple Maple Turkey Burgers with Maple-Dijon Sauce

A few things I learned:
1. We grill these and they are the best when grilled. And I mean outdoor grill. The George Foreman grill totally dried these things out.
2. I can't seem to make the sweet potato fries crispy. If you figure it out, let me know.
3. I tried to find unsweetened applesauce chunks because the sweetened kind are too much. I ended up using unsweetened applesauce.
4. We actually eat these without the bun. I kept having leftover buns or getting moldy buns so I gave up. Now we eat them with just some of the maple-dijon sauce. Still, very, very good.
5. I buy good bacon. Yummy, thick, with some fat-on-it bacon. The burgers are very moist.
6. You may have two options when buying ground turkey: white breast only or just ground turkey. If you buy the ground breast meat, the bacon more than makes up for the possible dryness.
7. One time, I put too much applesauce in or didn't fully drain the turkey meat and they wouldn't stay in form on the grill.

I think that is it on these. They are delicious. If you like them, I recommend that you print the recipe because the Food Network sometimes takes down recipes.

~ Food mama

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Happy Birthday Little Brother

I never forget and didn't forget, the card just usually gets delayed.

1972: Jimmy, me, you

I can't believe that we have grown so much, it's hard to look at you and see you as an adult. You were the coolest kid, so fun, so friendly and easy. Easy to like, easy to love.

I dream of winning the lottery and buying a huge parcel of land so that you, Jimmy and I can live a few acres apart, connected by golf cart paths. Far enough away for privacy, but close enough to have Happy Hour on Friday nights like Mom, Dad, Grandpa and Grandma. We would start a business and be happy and our kids would play together. I imagine us on warm summer evenings drinking Scarlett O'Haras; we would laugh alot, sing songs from Grease and play spades until sunrise.

I suspect we won't have the compound that I dream of but know that I always think of you and am so proud of the man that you have become. Although, I will always remember you most as a kid.

Of greatest joy to me, is that I see your nature in my boys. I am grateful that the David gene is embedded in my sons. I sometimes call out Jimmy and David rather than Jamie and Nathan. I laugh a little at how easily your name is called out. It seems like it was just yesterday...

My best to you sweet brother. I love you.


Dream Diary - 2

This is actually, somewhat of a recurring dream in principle. So here is the latest version.

I dreamt that it was night time and everyone was sleep.

I realized that our bed was moving up and down as if by a ghost or something. Mike agreed that we should immediately fly out and get with someone who works to rid your house of ghosts.

We hop on a plane but realize the boys are still in the house alone. Mike tells me to call 911 so that they (police) can go see what is happening to our bed and to protect the boys from the ghosts. I tell him we need someone there to watch the boys and we realize we will not be able to get back before they wake up. We start calling his parents, our neighbors, our nanny and his sister, but no one will answer their phone in the middle of the night and the police and fire trucks are on their way to our house and they will see that no one is there with the boys.

I tell Mike that we will be arrested for child endangerment. It makes me sick to think I would leave my boys alone in the house. Why did we do this?

~ Dream Over

I don't know why I keep dreaming this - leaving the boys alone in the house while they sleep. I just keep dreaming a different version of the same thing. I would never do this but somehow, it keeps showing up. I remember reading once that dreams are manifestations of what you fear or want. This may be the general fear that I will do something stupid or make a bad decision where my boys are concerned and leaving them alone in the house is one of the more obvious bad decisions one could make because you just wouldn't do it.

You have probably read newspaper stories where people leave their kids alone in the house (toddler/baby age) for several days and the horrible condition they are found in. In a general sense, I have a similar reaction to other parents making bad decisions for their kids. It makes me ill.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


I am going to look F I N E fine this summer!

My manager recommended these combo flip-flop/sneaker shoes that give you a good work out when you wear them. They are called FitFlops and I purchased them at my favorite girlie online shopping site, Bliss.

I think my husband will be excited. He hates my Birkenstocks and I hate to wear sneakers so I have the best of both worlds now and will use them on our trip to California next week.

I love the fact that when you wear them, they help you work out your legs. That fits with my schedule, so I am going to wear them all day long while I work so they will be working my legs!!!

Wait...let me see the directions here...


You actually have to wear them while you are walking. Okay, so let me think about this....

So, let's see...I will wear them every time I walk outside. And to the store. And to the mailbox. Which, all of a sudden, doesn't sound like a whole lot of walking.

Oh well, my dreams of great gams are diminishing by the second.

At least they're cute sandals.

~ (Maybe) Lovely Leggy Mama

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Dream Diary - 1

I had this dream the other night.

There were 2 or 3 assassins holding a guy in their room. A woman and her son were on the porch outside. The room was in a hotel.

I was not IN the room or any of the people but watching.

The FBI or other law enforcement agency was down stairs looking for the assassins.

No crime or understanding of why the guy was being held.

The most memorable moment was when the woman on the porch escaped down to the lobby of the hotel. An assassin chased her down and was just footsteps behind her.

She ran into the atrium lobby looking for help. She saw the law enforcement agent with his gun up near his ear scanning the area. She tried to call out but the assassin caught her. He was dressed all in black and his face was covered.

My dream went to slow motion as this point. She turned and caught the eye of the agent. She said nothing but her face was saying, "this is him" and the agent shot the assassin dead.

Dream Over

Dear Mother Nature, I'm Sorry.

Dear Mother Nature,
I'm sorry about the Dragon Fly. It was such a windy day, he probably got worn out in the 15 - 20 mph gusts or maybe he broke a wing. He looked so peaceful as he sat on our porch. I really wanted the boys to see him because they had not seen a Dragon Fly up close. There weren't very gentle when they were petting him or her...I don't know. I haven't learned the identifying characteristics of the anatomy of the Dragon Fly.

It seemed like maybe he would live because he was just tired. The boys wanted to count his legs. There were six so that was good. They wanted to count his wings. There were four, so that was good too. We couldn't see that anything was broken and the boys just wanted to touch the delicate wings.

I decided to take him to the flowering Phlox - hoping that if he was dying, that it was the best place for him to do so. Again, not sure about what Dragonflies think are important.

The boys followed me over. After I sat him down, we talked about how he might be sick or hurt and the boys were worried, except that didn't really care and wanted to carry the Dragonfly all over the back yard. He was like a pet to them. I figured if I walked away, they would too. They didn't. They kept picking him up and walking around.

After awhile, I noticed they stopped and started fanning the flowers as if they had lost him. Hopefully, he was able to find every ounce of strength and cunning to hide from them. I heard them yell, "Where'd he go?" and I knew, he was safe...or dead.

As much as I want my boys to be interested in all things you offer, I am afraid that they will think you and all of your gifts are invincible. As they grow, I hope they become your protector and guard and find ways to help you and yours flourish and see that the delicate ones are taken care of.

We begin planting our garden in the coming homage to Spring.

We'll watch for butterflies and dragonflies and worms.


~ Mama to Bug Lovers

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Oranges and Sun Tan Lotion

Last night, the boys had to take a bath. I burned 30,000 calories! Niiiiice.

Not sure if scrubbed them enough though...

I was putting Nathan to bed last night and he smelled like oranges and sun tan lotion.

Sunshine and summer. Is there anything nicer?

~ Summer-ready Mom

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Two Perfect Oranges

Occasionally, I experience "magic moments", times that were just so good, you cannot recreate them. They live with you for decades and you remember them as clear as the day and minute they occurred. I had one tonight and it was a long time coming.

A few things to know about me:

1. My boys are picky eaters. At almost 3, they are squashing my "fire" as a cook.
2. I don't really like oranges.

When I was about 15, I was over at my best-friend's house. Her name was Lisa. And she was the quintessential best friend and the exact kind you hope for your kids to have during their school years. I still miss her today. My memories of her are so rich and easy to recall.

It was an ordinary day, we were at her house. I cannot recall anything else about that day. I don't know why I was there or what we did that day, with the exception of about 20 minutes. I can't explain WHY this is what I remember, but it is. She pulled out an orange. Although we had them at our house, it was always something my brothers liked, not me. They were odd. They had this white stuff I could not get off. They had weird skin, I just did not eat them. I couldn't even peel them.

We were laughing, talking about boys and school in general, I'm sure. She peeled the orange. We sat on top of her kitchen counter. The orange was so cold and so sweet, I forgot about the weird skins and enjoyed the sweet, juicy burst of sunshine that slid down my throat. It was, in a word, magic. I remember those 20 minutes like they were last week. I have not enjoyed an orange since that day. Until this evening.

Jamie playing with trains.

2 Oranges in the fridge. I must have been thinking about Lisa when I was in the grocery store and bought them. Taking a chance on loving them the way I did in that moment so long ago.

I don't know how to peel them. I had to use a sharp knife. I grabbed the orange and a napkin and took it to the table.

Nathan at the table eating Jamie's grilled cheese.

He asked for a Peach. A tiny piece.

Me: Nathan, this is an orange. Orrrr anggge.

I struggle to get the weird white stuff of the orange. I fail. I hand it to him anyway. He pops it in his mouth. Weird look on his face. Oh well. I'm not that fond of them either. Then... he gets this grin on his face.

Nathan: ORANGE!!!

I take a bite. It's sweet and juicy, unimaginable sweet, almost cartoon-esque in the absolute richness of the orange flavor. DE-LICIOUS!

Nathan and I took turns eating pieces of the orange. Tiny pieces and big pieces. White weird stuff and all. Chunky, odd-shaped pieces because I can't peel the orange so that it is a perfect wedge. Not like Lisa, but this...this was a magic moment. Me and Nate. Nate and me. Just the two of us, eating the only other perfect orange in the whole, wide, world.

I think I just might like oranges, maybe, a little bit.

~ Orange-i-licious Mama

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

"Publix" Service Announcement

I have officially lost my cooking mojo. No really. It's gone. I have gone stale with my exposure to new condiments, spices, anything. Gone, baby gone.

Mostly my brain is drained from having debates with my boys over the plan for dinner...

My Plan: Chili!

Jamie: Chickens!

Me: Not chicken, Chili!

Jamie No Mom. Chickens!

Nathan: Eggs!

They look at their plate and determine which item is most familiar and eat that. Then say they are all done. Swooosh! It sucks the creativity out of you.

Lately, I have been looking through cookbooks and newspapers for ideas on dinner...until a little inspiration hit me in the form of the cooking demo lady for Aprons, a Publix service for their customers! The food is, in a word, fantastic!

Last night, I made Calypso Chicken and Island Rice. We cooked everything outside on the grill and it really was wonderful! I didn't even mind that the boys didn't eat a single bite, in fact, I LOVED it because I enjoyed a wonderful (and plentiful) lunch!

A few weeks ago, I had my first bite of Tilapia - I should have known then that my new best friend - and inspiration - was a sweet woman at the demo stand in my supermarket. She is enthusiastic, tells you how easy it is and I get a nice little snack in the process. Here is the recipe for Lime Butter Fish with Easy Herb Pasta.

To make it easy for you, they have all of the ingredients right there for you so you don't have to hunt all of the store. And the best part? A little recipe card - FREE - to add to your collection!!!

So, for all of you seeking inspiration for a wonderful meal, I recommend checking out your local Publix or access their site for more recipes.

~ Calypso Island Mama