Thursday, April 29, 2010

Baseball and Wild Dogs

Last night, we took the munchkins to the Texas Rangers baseball game. We had an AMAZING time! It was the first time we made it through the whole game. Logan watched part of the game. Trip flirted with the two girls sitting behind us AND their mother AND the girl sitting halfway down the aisle! The boy is a ladies man, what can I say? We had hotdogs and nachoes and ballpark beer. The boys had ice cream sundaes. The Rangers tried to give up their lead in the ninth inning, but they finally pulled out the win by one run.

Then we drove home. It's a long drive and the boys fell asleep, as little boys often do. We finally got home. Ed went to the door and put something in the house. I was trying to get the boys to wake up and put on their shoes and walk into the house. They're heavy! You would make them walk too!

And then....

It was straight out of a horror story!!

Ed starts yelling at me that there's a wild dog in the road and to get the boys in the house! My arms are already full with all of the baggage from the car. I grab Logan (who, Oh My God!, weighs in at 50 lbs!!!) and sprint to the door.


I fumble through my purse, trying desperately to find my keys. Everything in my purse ends up on the steps to the door. I finally found the keys, opened the door, and threw Logan in the house. I turned and threw Trip in the house.


And there was no wild dog in sight.

And our dogs were in the back yard and calm.

But I felt like I was in a Hollywood horror movie!!!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Movie Stars, Scene 1

There was a very funny story about my adventures in nursing on this page. I felt it was not appropriate for this blog. I have started another blog highlighting my time as a nurse. If you would like the web address to that blog, leave a message and I will send it to you.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Orange Julius

Several months ago, I was talking to my hairdresser about homemade popsicles and desserts. He said his mom had been a bit of a hippie, and with him being the oldest child, she made the ultra healthy, homemade desserts that are reserved for the oldest child. The oldest child is really a guinea pig. You try out all of your ideas on him/her. By the time the last child rolls around, they get the full sugar popsicles from the grocery store because there are however many other people in the house to feed also. Or at least that's what I've been told. It's a different ballgame with twins. I've been hanging on for dear life! I'm finally starting to get comfortable with the fact that I have twins and I may survive the experience. Yes, as a matter of fact, they are five years old now! God help me through their teenage years!

Back to my topic! My hairdresser said his mother used to make him a dessert out of orange juice concentrate and plain yogurt. He said the frozen orange juice concentrate made little balls of flavor in the dessert. I didn't think about that dish until I ran across a recipe for an Orange Julius in this months edition of the Food Network Magazine. (I haven't figured out how to provide a link yet, but it's out there on the interweb.)

To make the Orange Julius, put 6 oz of frozen orange juice concentrate, 1 cup of milk (I used skim milk), 1/4 cup of powdered sugar, 1/4 cup of regular sugar, and 1 tsp of vanilla in a blender and then fill with ice. Blend to desired consistency.

Having never had an Orange Julius, it was an interesting taste. The husband enjoyed it. The blue eyed munchkin loved it, but I can count on him loving anything sweet.

So there I was in my kitchen, with half of a can of frozen orange juice concentrate. I thought of my hairdresser. I thought of the plain yogurt in my refrigerator. I added equal amounts of each into a bowl. It came out very smooth and a bit bitter. I was surprised the orange juice concentrate didn't make the yogurt sweeter. I thought about the powdered sugar I still had sitting out on my counter. 6 oz orange juice concentrate, 3/4 cup of plain yogurt, 1/2 cup of powdered sugar, mix. The powdered sugar formed little balls of intensely sweet flavor in the dish. I think the Hippie Momma may have been trying to make an Orange Julius.

(Yes, I did threaten Blondie with bodily injury and poisoning and almost certain death if he didn't try the Orange Thing! He did survive the encounter.)

That all left me with too much orangy sweetness in my kitchen. It was good, just too much. I do, however, know what to do with leftover sweet things. I put the leftovers into my popsicle molds.


I have been waiting for weeks for my peonies to break through the ground and finally bloom. I literally checked the spot in the yard where I thought the peony plant would come up every day for two weeks before realizing I was walking on the new plant.

Then the buds of the first flowers showed up. I waited and waited. How long does it take these freaking things to open?!?! And then I worked a couple of days at the hospital and this morning, I saw this:

Then, I wasn't able to stand it any longer. I cut those beautiful flowers and brought them inside. I'd forgotten how fragrant peonies are. My house smells AMAZING!!! Now before you become too impressed with me, I did not plant these flowers. I have simply managed to not kill them. Which, really, is very impressive for me.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


I finally got my camera battery charged and bought a new disc for the camera. Apparently, when you have a camera that's older than dirt (which really doesn't make it all that old), you have to buy a disc that is made for the older cameras. Two trips to Best Buy later, I can finally take pictures. The munchkins were not cooperative. But I love them anyway.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


I would like to say that I never feed my children any food with high fructose corn syrup or pre-packaged food, but that would be an absolute lie. I would also like to claim that I don't regularly allow my munchkins to eat store bought chicken nuggets with store bought ketchup, but that would also be a lie. There are even days when they eat chicken nuggets and ketchup for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. What can I say? Twelve hours is a long time to work.

Logan regularly asks me what things are made of, chickens, cupcakes, cows, goldfish. I answer him to the best of my ability, as any loving mother would, but sometimes, he gets to a beginning substance. What is chicken made out of? He's gotten to the beginning of the list. My answer for that kind of question is: carbon and hydrogen. He has finally began to accept that answer. He asked me recently what ketchup was made of. Having read the ingredient list on a few ketchup bottles, I could honestly tell him tomatoes and vinegar. That sweet little question and his beautiful, questioning blue eyes got me to thinking about ketchup and how much better it could be. I began to experiment. The most interesting concoction I created was ketchup using balsamic vinegar.


1 - 6 oz can of Tomato paste
3-4 Tbsp Balsamic vinegar
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp Lawry's seasoned salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

Combine the tomato paste and spices in a small bowl. Add in the vinegar 1 Tbsp at a time, adding more until you get the consistency you want.


Saturday, April 3, 2010

Pina Colada Popsicles

Every once in a while, living with twin boys means there will be a meltdown at my house by one boy or the other. There will be tears and yelling or screaming, possibly a brother being hit. They're boys, hits happen. If the boys happen to stay up for any length of time after their normal bedtime, at least one of these meltdowns will occur and there will be especially dramatic screaming and crying. One such meltdown occurred just the other night.

It was just me and the boys at home, so I let them stay up late to finish watching a movie. Logan decided he needed a popsicle about halfway through the movie, so he brought me one that was in the freezer.

"You know these are Daddy's popsicles, right?"

"Yes, Momma."

The dirty rascal knows I'm sucker for being called Momma. His twang helps his cause. He bats his eyelashes at me and knows I'm going to let him have it.

That part of the evening was uneventful. Then the movie ended. Then my little demon Trip decided that he could not go to sleep without a popsicle.

Please Momma!

Ok, fine. But you have to take actual bites out of it, not just licks.

He looks at me and bats his eyelashes and knows he can do whatever he wants.

Then the meltdown happened. Logan wanted another popsicle. As lenient as I can be with their diet, I do limit their sweets, and as this particular delicacy has 400 calories per serving, I was not going to budge.

Tears ensued. My poor little boy sat down behind the far side of the couch and threw a fit. Screaming, begging, pleading for just one more popsicle. Unfortunately for Logan, he tickled my funny bone. I started laughing and could not stop. I was doubled over, clutching my sides, laughing with tears streaming down my face at my poor boys plight. This made Logie scream more. He could not understand why his momma was laughing at him. The poor boy. Momma is an ICU nurse and that comes with a sick sense of humor.

I did finally scoop him up and take him upstairs to bed, promising him more popsicles the next day.

The lineup:

One can cream of coconut (I think it's an 8 oz can, found with the adult beverage mixes)
Two 6 oz cans pineapple juice.

The cream of coconut will be separated when you open the can. Empty the cream of coconut into a measuring glass, scraping all of the delectable coconut out of the can. Microwave for about 20 seconds to melt the milky goodness. Stir to incorporate. Add in the pineapple juice and stir well. Pour into popsicle molds and freeze for at least 8 hours. If you try to take these out of the molds early, the sticks will slide out and you'll be scooping the popsicle out with a spoon.


Iced Tea

Being from the South, I grew up drinking sweet iced tea. After I got married and moved out of my mother's house, I tried many different times to brew iced tea and never could figure out what I did wrong because it just didn't taste right. I finally broke down and asked my mother what she had done to her tea, at which point, she looked at me like I was crazy for not ever realizing what she had done to the tea when I was growing up. She added in a bag of Constant Comment tea, or some other flavored tea, to the regular black tea. Simple, but it transforms the tea into a delight for the tongue.

The lineup:

One family sized bag of black tea, such as Lipton or Luzianne
One bag of Constant Comment tea
1/2 - 1 cup of sugar, or
Sweet N Low or other artificial sweetener, too taste

Fill a 3 quart pan with water until it's almost full. Set over a burner on the stove set to high and bring to a rolling boil. Turn off the burner and put the tea bags in the water. Let the tea steep for at least 15-20 minutes.

If you're going to make iced tea sweetened with sugar, put 1/2 - 1 cup of sugar into a pitcher. It's better to go with too much sugar for iced tea, because once the tea cools, the sugar won't dissolve. If the tea is really dark, I add in some tap water because munchkins at my house won't drink tea if it's too strong. Add in ice until the pitcher is full and serve immediately or chill in the refrigerator until needed.

If you're going to use an artificial sweetener, fill the pitcher with ice, add in a few packets of the sweetener and pour the hot tea over the ice. Add in a little water if the tea still looks a litte dark.