Sunday, May 26, 2013

Moss Beach

Yesterday was a good day.  I'm kinda getting over my illness, we had lunch in Moss Beach then went to the beach for a couple hours.  The beaches here are nothing like the beaches in Texas.  They are WAY BETTER here.  It's also a lot colder here, too.  We were bundled up in long pants and hoodies and I was still cold...and I loved every minute of it.  Growing up in Texas, you'd think I'd be all over 95+ degree weather at the beach.....NOPE.  I love that it's cold and windy and that the water is freezing.  It's such a strange combination to me.  But it works :)

While we were at the beach, Turkey, as usual, goes right for the freezing cold water, gets wet, takes off his pants and proceeds to enjoy the rest of his time in his Creeper shirt and underwear.  My little Bean is very timid of anything that looks slightly dangerous or different.  So, he was hanging back with Mommy and Daddy while his older brothers waded into the cold water.  He eventually got up his nerve and dipped his toes into the water near the tide pools.

Oh, and a funny thing happened while we were there.  Well, probably not funny to Pete, but funny, nonetheless.  We were leaving the beach and he couldn't find his shoes that he had dropped off at the bottom of the stairs.  Someone had stolen them!  Who does that???  Poor Pete had to walk back to his car without shoes on :(  I guess whoever took them, really needed some worn out flip flops.  What is the world coming too?

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Accosted at Starbucks

This morning started out like it usually does, everyone running late.  Now that we've moved, Angel's school is a solid 25 minute drive in the AM.  Well, this morning, we were running behind.  I didn't have time to make breakfast, so I grabbed some Clif bars and shot out the door.  We made it in pretty good time so I decided to stop at the Starbucks and get the boys a breakfast sandwich instead of just eating a Clif bar for breakfast.

I saw the usual crew, said my hellos, ordered and waited for my sandwiches to be heated up and my latte to be made.   Just when I was about to get my coffee and sandwiches, a woman comes into the shop and starts screaming, or should I say, demanding to know who's van is parked outside.   I looked at her, she was one of the homeless people that hangs out around this particular Starbucks, and realized she was talking about my van.

I had parked right in front.  Right in the sweet spot.  Front row, closest to the door, totally visible from inside the shop.  I say this next thing with a bit of hesitation, for fear of being judged.  But, I know that I need to say it.  I left all 3 of the boys in the van.  The store wasn't crowded, I could see them, and I was in a hurry.  Now, some of you might be thinking that I should not have done that and that CPS should be called on me.  And  you have the right to think that. But I really was paying attention.

Well, after listening to her psychotic rants and claims of an 8 month old baby in the van screaming and in duress, I said to her that it was my van and I'm RIGHT HERE.  I SEE THEM.  THEY AREN'T SCREAMING, HE"S NOT 8 MOS. OLD.  She proceeds to scream obscenities at me for leaving them in the car, that she was going to call the police and that I should "Fucking go to work and forget about my goddamn coffee!"  "Fucking take care of your kids!  First of all, she knows nothing about me or how I "take care of my kids".  I was infuriated as well as being scared shitless!

All the while getting closer to me and waving her arms like she was about to attack me.  I have never been so scared and pissed off at the same time.  Ever.  I was shaking.  I didn't know if she was going to come after me, or go after the boys.  Well, after what seemed like an eternity of her screaming at me, she walked outside.  It looked as if she were going to go to the van so I followed her.  She saw I was coming and figured it was a good time to start verbally accosting me again.

At this point, Cat, the brave Starbucks worker came out and got in between me and the crazy homeless woman.  She did this because at this point, it really looked like she was going to attack me.   A few other workers came out then she finally left.

I was so upset and scared.  I had started to cry and ended up in the car, sans food and coffee.  A nice patron of the shop (she told me her name was Tanya) came up to the window and checked on me to see if I was OK and was so nice and reassuring that nothing was my fault and let me know that the homeless lady was a little "off".  She offered to get my food and drink for me, but by this time, another Starbucks employee had come to my car to check on me.  They gave me a hug, told me I was a good mom (thanks Nick!) and apologized for my horrible experience.  I got my food and was on my way, after calming down and stopping myself from hyperventilating.

The staff at the Starbucks was awesome and the one patron was super nice.  But no one else said anything or got involved.  I guess that's what's to be expected.  So now, I feel shaky and weird and ashamed for letting a crazy woman make me feel bad about my parenting choices.  I am a good mom and I do what is absolutely the best for my children.  I should not feel guilty, but unfortunately, I do.

I have no lesson or funny quip about this particular occurrence.  I just had to get it out on "paper".

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Green Smoothie of the Day

Today's smoothie tasted much better than the previous liquid lettuce one I had to doctor up the other day.  I put carrot juice, coconut water, bananas, frozen pineapple, plain yogurt, chia seeds and kale in it. 

I used my regular blender instead of my magic bullet.  So this made enough for 4 people to have a smoothie.

1/2 c carrot juice
1/2 - 3/4 c coconut water
1 c frozen pineapple
2 small bananas 
1/2 - 3/4 c plain yogurt
1/4 c chia seeds
1 giant handful of kale

Blend all ingredients until smooth.  

Monday, May 13, 2013

There Should be a P.T.S.D. category for Recycling

I was at a birthday party this weekend and was about to throw away a paper plate and a plastic fork.  I opened the cabinet under the sink and asked if it was trash or recycling.  I was told it was trash.  I looked at the items in my hand and couldn't decide if it was trash or recycling so I ended up putting it into the trash.  Immediately realizing I should have put the plastic fork in the recycling and the paper plate into the trash.

This might sound a bit boring, but as I was thinking about which item was to go where, I could feel my pulse quickening and my mind racing about what is recyclable and what is not.   I felt as if I was being judged by everyone around me...."Tsk, tsk, what IS she doing?"  This is what I was thinking everyone was thinking about me...I'm sure they weren't.

Living in California does this to me.  Not that we didn't recycle before, but now that we are where recycling is mandatory and it's completely frowned upon if you don't, I get stage fright when I walk up to a trash can.  Am I putting things in the rights spot, will they separate it for me, is this lid recyclable, should I rinse every last spec of food/lotion/peanut butter out of the container before putting it in the bin?  Ahhhhhhhh!

Thank goodness for pictures, or what I like to call, the "How To Guide" on the trash cans/recycling cans.  If it weren't for those, I wouldn't know what to do!  Well, not really, but that is what it feels like.  I'm an intelligent woman, but as soon as I get near a trash receptacle, I become a flippin idiot.  Does anyone else feel like this?

To remedy my PTSD, I should just look on the website to see what is ACTUALLY allowed in the recycling bin and what is not...but, I've got better things to do with my laundry...meh.

This is a picture I took when we were at McDonald's (don't judge - it happens sometimes).  See what I mean?  Even the McDonald's has a "how to" guide.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day!

This is a pic of me and my mom at the Berkeley Kite Festival a couple of years ago.

Happy Mother's Day to all of the hard working, wonderful Moms!  To all of my amazing friends, I hope Mother's Day is fantastic!  

Now, I'm going to relax...Peace Out!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Butternut Squash and Kale Soup

Last night's dinner was a bit of a throw together, but I think it turned out pretty good.  We had 4 butternut squash from the CSA I needed to use and a bag of kale that we need to use up too.  I roasted the squash in the oven, cooled, peeled then scooped into a pot.  Added some chicken stock, spices and the kale and let it simmer for a bit.  Then I blended it with the immersion blender and dinner was ready!  It's not the prettiest color (kinda greenish) but the boys are used to that, because I add kale and spinach to almost everything we eat.

Tip of the day....and maybe you knew this, but I just discovered this...when roasting squash in the oven,  just place the entire squash, uncut, onto a cookie sheet and bake it.  In about 45 minutes, the squash will be tender and you can cut and scoop out the insides.  Super easy and not as labor intensive as what I was doing before.

Oh and to make this vegetarian, just add vegetable stock or plain water to the soup instead of the chicken stock.  But if you do plain water, make sure to add more spices to get some flavor in there.

 The roasted butternut squash scooped out and cut into chunks

4 cups of chicken stock.  Or you could use vegetable stock or plain water. 


 Combined and simmering till tender.

 I added a big handful of kale.

 Wilt it down

 Blend with the immersion blender until smooth.

Butternut Squash & Kale Soup

4 butternut squash
4 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock or water
1/4 tsp or more of ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg
1 tbl sage
salt & pepper to taste - I think I put about 1/2 tsp salt and probably a tsp of pepper
large handful of kale - approx. 3-4 cups loosely packed

1.  Bake or roast butternut squash.  Let cool then scoop and put in pot.
2.  Add chicken stock
3.  Add spices
4.  Simmer until all the flavors meld together.  I think I did it for 20 minutes or so.
5.  Add kale and let the soup wilt it down
6.  Mix with immersion blender or put in blender to make it smooth

This soup will be creamy like it has dairy in it, but it doesn't!  You could make it vegetarian/vegan by using vegetable stock or plain water.  If you use water, add more seasoning to the soup.  Taste as you go along to get the flavor you want.

I'm thinking next time, I'll add a white wine.  I think it will add a nice complexity of flavor to the dish.


Thursday, May 9, 2013

Yogurt Bar for Teacher Appreciation Breakfast

This week is Teacher Appreciation Week.  I've decided to show my appreciation by giving the teachers breakfast.  I have to admit that I was a little stressed out.  Mostly about getting there early enough to set everything up.  I provided a variety of yogurts, which were in individual cups, along with some non-dairy options.  Toppings for the yogurt, like, granola, fresh fruit, fruit preserves, nuts, chocolate chips, and then a few bread options (belgian waffles and currant twists...they are like biscotti). I also got some juices, coconut water, frappuccino and some of those Starbucks green coffee extract drinks.  It made me very happy to see the teachers come in and smile!  I so appreciate what they do each and every day and this was my little way of saying THANKS!!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Green Smoothie for the Day

Today's smoothie is comprised of spinach, romaine, pear, avocado, banana, chia seeds, frozen pineapple, carrot juice, plain yogurt, and a scoop of vanilla protein powder.  I don't typically put lettuce in my smoothies, but our CSA gave us a ton and I'm trying to finish it.  I personally hate lettuce.  I realize that is a strong statement, but I really don't like it.  Don't get me wrong, I love every other type of greens, just not lettuce.  Anyone else out there have an abhorrence for lettuce?  

I got the recipe for this smoothie from Mind, Body, Green.  I added a couple extra things to it to make it taste better.  Because, to be perfectly honest,  it was like drinking liquid lettuce....gag!  

What kind of smoothie/juice did you make today?

Monday, May 6, 2013

Minecraft Birthday Party

WARNING:  Picture heavy!

This past Saturday was Angel's 8th birthday!  Where has the time gone???  I remember when I went into labor with him and...yada yada yada...I'm sure you don't care.  So, I'll just get to the party :)  His birthday theme this year was MINECRAFT!  Apparently, it's all the rage.  We had a sleepover with 3 other boys from his school.  He was so excited to have them over.  I'm so happy that they all decided to stay the night.  I don't think many of them had been to a sleepover before.  It was a big deal for all of us!  I made some Minecraft themed party favors, food and we played some Minute to Win It type games.  Fun was had by all!

 This is what I brought to Angel's class on Friday....Zombie Boogers (grapes).  The kids loved them, surprisingly.  As soon as I said that they were Zombie Boogers, they went crazy.  I had about 5 extra and the kids were asking for them for their mom, brother, or themselves.  I was worried they wouldn't like it because it wasn't a cupcake...I was wrong!

 I also brought bottled water with a label I made that said, "Creeper Juice".

Sprinkle Pancakes for breakfast the day of his birthday

 The birthday boy!

 Creeper cakes...NAILED IT!  (not!)

 the spread

 The empty plate that says "STEAK" had turkey sliders on it

 The party favors:  Creeper t-shirt, Creeper water bottle, Steve head.  All made by me and the hubs.  I'll post the links to the printables soon.

 Our first 'Minute to Win It' game.  Defying Gravity:  keep 2 balloons off the ground for one minute.  It's a lot harder than it looks.  The best score was 8 seconds.


 The next game was to balance a raw egg on a football for 10 seconds.  This one was a lot easier....probably because they were holding the football.

 They were concentrating really hard...

 I called this one 'Jumping Bunnies'.  They had to suck the bunny onto the end of the straw and then transfer it to the cup.

 Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner!

 This game was too funny!  I smeared Vaseline on their noses and they had to "pick up" as many cotton balls as possible without using their hands.  

 As you can see, it was really frustrating!

This game had a tie!  3 cotton balls was the most anyone could pick up.  

The boys played games outside, played Minecraft inside, watched a couple of movies then went to MIDNIGHT!!!  Then, they were up at 6:15...HOLY MOLY!  I was SO TIRED!   Why do kids do that?  Anyways, it was great!  
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