Wednesday, July 8, 2009
See you soon!
Saturday, May 23, 2009
This is the green multi-colored flower mug from Orla Kiely. It doesn't make me smile every time I see it like the Orla Kiely bowl does, but I do like it.
Cute, isn't it?
The bowl makes me happy every time I look at it. Really, it makes me smile inside.
Perhaps I needed it after all.
Friday, May 22, 2009
But I have to say that while I find this apartment a little lonely, I do think it is slightly inspirational to see how little one can live with. As I try to cram all my crap into my tiny home, I look at these pictures and think, "can't I part with just a few more things?" I mean, Apartment Therapy's Home Cure is pretty convincing when it comes to clearing out the junk but nothing like this! And honestly, some mornings I wish my closet looked like that. What a time saver!
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Friday, May 15, 2009
Thursday, May 14, 2009
As the mother of two boys, this book has scared the hell out of me. In the book, Dr. Sax states that we are raising a generation of unmotivated, underachieving, disinterested and disengaged boys. Even more frightening is the fact that Dr. Sax cites studies indicating that boys today have half the sperm count that boys did in the 1940's, and that they are going through puberty much later than earlier generations. There are many reasons for this, according to Dr. Sax, but the factors he discusses that hit closest to home were changes in the educational system, video games, and BPA in our food.
According to Dr. Sax, the acceleration of our educational system, resulting in kindergarten being what first grade was decades ago, has harmed boys immensely. Most five year old boys are simply not ready or able to sit quietly and learn to read as they are expected to do in today's society. As a result, the boys are placed on the slow track. The boys pick up on the fact that they are not in the "smart group" and start to dislike school. This dislike of school carries through the grades and results in disengagement and a lack of motivation. (Interestingly, the Finnish educational system has consistently ranked as the best in the world. Finland does not start to formally educate their children until the age of seven.) Dr. Sax also points to the abolition of competition in schools as significantly harming boys, as the lack of competition has taken away one of the main forces which drive boys to succeed.
Another factor causing boys' disengagement from, and disinterest in, the real world is video game playing. The chapter on video games is dense and full of facts, so I won't delve to deeply into it here, but one fact that I found alarming is that studies have found that video games containing violence have the same effect on a boy's brain as do the drugs commonly prescribed for ADHD, which drugs Dr. Sax also blames for the problems boys are experiencing today. One thing to note, Dr. Sax mentions that there is no distinction between "good" violence, i.e. where the player is a policeman killing a bad guy, and "bad" violence. Violence is violence, pure and simple, and all violent video games have the same effect on a boy's developing brain.
The chapter that scared me the most and has kept me up several nights this week is the chapter about the presence of BPA in our food. According to Dr. Sax, BPA, which is found in plastics such as those used for water bottles, acts like the hormone estrogen in males. Needless to say, estrogen in a young boy's body wreaks havoc on his system. BPA has even been found in the bloodstream of newborn males, indicating that pregnant and nursing mothers who ingest BPA are passing it on to their offspring. And the problem cannot be solved by merely quitting your bottled water habit. Look around, and you will realize that plastic touches most of the foods we eat. Cardboard milk cartons? Lined with plastic. Deli paper used for meats? Ditto. Most canned foods are housed in cans that have a plastic liner containing BPA. We use plastic containers at home to store leftovers. Our children drink out of plastic sippy cups.
So what do we do? I have not yet worked out what to do about the state of our educational system. Dr. Sax advocates for same-sex schooling, which really isn't an option for our family. But as for video games, I am going to keep a much closer eye on what my 10-year old is doing on the computer and completely ban those games that contain the slightest hint of violence. I find the plastics issue much more difficult to deal with, but what I have done so far is I have thrown away all of our plastic cups, plates and bottles. I plan to buy glass food storage containers. Absolutely no microwaving food in plastic is allowed. No more water bottled in plastic bottles. And I plan to drastically cut the amount of food we buy in cans and research those companies that use BPA-free linings.
For more information on Boys adrift, visit http://www.boysadrift.com/.
and the clear plastic storage boxes from the Container Store Both of these boxes come in a variety of sizes and shapes.
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Making my task harder is the fact that we use our dining room for everything. Our dining room is where we eat, play, create, study - everything but sleep. I am trying to find a way to incorporate into the dining room storage all of the things that go along with these activities.
So please bear with me!
Saturday, May 9, 2009
It is important to me to be able to whip up a good smoothie at home because my kids love smoothies and I find them to be a great way to get a bunch of nutritious ingredients into my kids quickly and easily. They may not always want to eat their broccoli, but my kids have yet to pass up a smoothie.
I found these recipes in Perfect Recipes for Losing Weight & Eating Great by Pamela Anderson. I really appreciate Pamela's no-nonsense approach to cooking and the fact that she offers variations at the bottom of each recipe. I made the Vanilla Fruit Smoothie recipe as written, but omitted the 1 cup of frozen fruit in the Chocolate Fruit Smoothie recipe. The verdict: My kids finished both smoothies and asked for more. A+ in my book.
Chocolate Fruit Smoothies
1 cup frozen fruit (strawberries, dark sweet cherries, raspberries)
1 medium peeled frozen banana
1 cup light chocolate soy milk
1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
Drop fruit of choice and banana into a blender. Whisk soy milk, cocoa powder, and optional flavorings in a 1 cup measuring cup. With blender on high, add soy milk mixture through feeder tube, stopping and stirring as necessary, until mixture is smooth. Pour into a glass and serve. Makes 2 cups, or 1 serving
use raspberries for fruit and whisk 1/4 teaspoon finely granted organge zest into soy milk.
Black Forest Smoothie
Use frozen cherries for fruit and whisk 1/2 teaspon almond extract into soy milk.
Vanilla Fruit Smoothies
1 cup frozen fruit (strawberries, dark sweet cherries, raspberries, blueberries, peaches, pineapple, mango) - I used Trader Joe's frozen mango chunks
1 medium peeled frozen banana
1 cup light vanilla soy milk
2 teaspoons honey
2 teaspoons lemon juice
Follow same directions as for Chocolate smoothie
Use frozen raspberries for fruit and whisk 1/4 teaspoon finely grated oranzge zest into soy milk.
Pina Colada Smoothie
Use frozen pineappple for fruit and whisk 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract into soy milk.
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
Feel free to join in whenever you'd like!
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Suffice it to say that I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I started my "little" project. I wanted to quit halfway through, but couldn't because the kitchen looked like a bomb had exploded in it. If I had thought about it, I would have realized that it would take me more than an hour to clean and organize twelve years' worth of kitchen clutter. But I never would have imagined that it would take me one whole weekend and three Mr. Clean sponges. By the way, if you have not familiarized yourself with Mr. Clean sponges, you need to do so AT ONCE. These things are AMAZING. A few swipes of a Mr. Clean sponge on the outside of my very dirty painted cabinets, and they looked better than I had ever thought possible. I have never gotten my kitchen so clean using other cleaners and sponges. Anyway - I now know why Apartment Therapy gives readers weeks to accomplish their kitchen cure, rather than days.
Next time, I will know better.
As if there will be a next time.
P.S. I will post pictures later. I would have done a before and after, but I was too embarrassed to showcase my before.
Saturday, May 2, 2009
Hopefully, 35 will soon find time to join us again. She has been very busy with her little one, working, and her own home challenge. She has made great strides in decluttering and organizing her home. I plan to bully her into sharing her progress on this blog. I AM the BIG sister after all!
The books each also feature a section on cookie decorating. Over the years, I have fought with many a sugar cookie dough. Except for one very lucky Christmas, the cookie dough has always kicked my ass. But the how to directions in these books made the cutting out and decorating of sugar cookies look so simple, I had to enter the ring for one more round. Stay tuned for the outcome...
Friday, April 24, 2009
You see, it is not only in the photography arena that I assume everyone has better gear than I. I also believe this to be true in the kitchen. I have a sorry, old, rundown excuse for a kitchen. The whole room measures 13x9. I have a run of cabinets, which are 60 years old if they are a day, along one wall. There is one drawer in the whole kitchen. And, most importantly, the biggest span of countertop is the area over my dishwasher, between the sink and stove. I believe it measures 2 feet long. I have three lower cabinets, the largest of which is basically useless, as it is beneath my sink. Okay, enough whining, you get the picture.
So - I have been following along with a bunch of cooking blogs, most notably the Pioneer Woman. Now, don't get me wrong, I love the Pioneer Woman. I mean, I read her practically every day. But PW not only has a very large, very tricked out, very AWESOME kitchen in her home, she also has a lodge on her property, and the lodge has an even bigger, more tricked out, more awesome kitchen. Perhaps there are some self-esteem issues rising to the surface here, but I began to feel like I may not be able to take my cooking to the next level because I did not have the proper kitchen.
Enter Deb and the Smitten Kitchen.
The Smitten Kitchen is a beautiful website with delicious recipes. And many of the recipes are complicated and involved. Well, it turns out that Deb is cooking out of a tiny NYC kitchen that only mine could rival! Learning this bit of information made me so happy, I cannot begin to tell you. Not that I am glad that Deb is dealing with a challenging kitchen, but knowing that there are others out there who are cooking in kitchens just like mine, yet managing to turn out wonderful dishes, helped to put my head back on straight. Thank you, Deb!
When you start to look around, encouragement is everywhere.
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Apartment therapy often links to other blogs, and it was in one of these blogs that I came across blissful images photography. I was instantly drawn to the soft, ethereal quality of the images and the watercolor-like muted colors. I lost several hours browsing the blissful images shop on etsy, the blissful images companion website, and the photographer's blog. Perhaps it is my lack of experience talking here, but I immediately drew the conclusion that the blissful images were captured with a much more expensive camera than mine. Because, I admit, I am still one of those photographers that believes you need a fancy camera to get fancy images.
It was to my shock and delight that I discovered that most of the blissful images were taken with a Nikon D40. A D40! To those of you who are not Nikon people, I will simply say that the D40 is an entry-level, 6mp DSLR. Until very recently, the camera did not even take a prime lens. Many enthusiasts love the D40, and I am sure it is a great camera. However, it is not a camera I normally equate with serious photographers. I stand corrected.
I find it so inspirational that there are people out there making beautiful images, and even selling them, with cameras that most shutterbugs can afford and handle. Thank you, Mrs. French for inspiring me and teaching me once and for all that it is the photographer, not the camera.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Today, I will introduce you to the wonder of the clone stamp tool. This is a picture of my daughter that I really liked, except for that pesky ghosly apparition of my son in the background.
Enter the clone stamp tool. This is a really easy, and fun tool to use in Photoshop. Definitely something a beginning beginner can do with ease.
Open the photo you want to edit. Go into full edit mode. Click on the clone stamp tool. In my Photoshop Elements, Six, it is the eighth icon down on the left hand side of the tool bar. It looks like an "M" shaped stamper. Then go up to the brush selector at the top of the page on the lefthand side (it is a black squiggly line) and chose the size brush you want to use by either moving the slider or entering numbers into the box. I am going to be honest here and tell you that I have no patience. Because of this, I always choose a brush that is way too big and wind up doing alot of "undoing" when I work. Don't be like me.
Now, pick a spot in your picture as close as possible to the object you want to erase. You want to do this in order to seamlessly blend the new area you are about to create with the existing area. After you have chosen your spot, Alt Click on your mouse. By doing so, you have told Photoshop that you want the spots you are deleting in your photograph to look like the area on which you just alt clicked.
Now comes the fun part - click away on the object you want to erase. As you do so, the object will disappear and be replaced with the parts of the picture on which you previously alt clicked. Caution: as you move the cursor around your picture, be aware of the plus sign that moves along with it. The plus is continuously sampling your photograph and using the samples to replace your unwanted object. Keep an eye on it and make sure it is sampling from the correct area(s). I have wound up with a child with three arms and an eye in the middle of their forehead more than I care to admit!
Here is my picture after using the clone stamp tool:
Ahhh.....much better. And my daughter no longer feels haunted by her little brother.
This is such a fun tool. Have fun!
And remember, if I can do it, you can do it!
Thursday, April 2, 2009
The lighting circumstances under which a photograph is taken can drastically affect the photo and can be the difference between a ho-hum picture and a showstopper. One aspect of seeing the light is understanding how the light changes over the course of a day and what this means for your photographs. For instance, sunlight at noon is a very different light than sunlight at sunrise and sunset. Mid-day, the light is harsh and contrasty. But in the early morning and evening, the sun is much softer and warmer. The same subject shot in exactly the same way at different times of day can yield startling different results.
I have been struggling to see the differences with my eyes for months, and, suddenly, it is becoming clear. A few weeks ago, I looked out the window at sunset and noticed that everything looked a pink. Now, everywhere I look, I see the changes in the light. My neighbor’s house is surrounded by a golden glow at 7:00 a.m. By 7:30 a.m., the magic is gone. At 6:00 in the evening, my fence looks like it is on fire. By 6:30, it is back to its normal state.
This is my fence at 6:25 p.m.
This is my fence one minute earlier, at 6:24 p.m.
What a difference one minute makes!
My baby in the car.
And just a few minutes earlier.
Do you see the warm glow in this picture that is absent from the one above?
My wall at 7:30 a.m. and a few minutes later.
I hope these examples help set you on your way to "seeing the light" and that you gain your sight more quickly than I did! Experiment, take pictures, and have fun!
P.S. If you haven't read Understanding Exposure, I highly recommend it!
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
The first recipe to break my heart was Roasted Chicken and Arugula from Everday Food. I am constantly on the lookout for simple recipes with few ingredients that I can easily whip up with the baby attached to my hip. Oh, this recipe was sooooo promising. Arugula, potatoes, butter - what more could a recipe need? I really, really wanted to love this dish. But no matter how I tried, I could not even muster up an "okay" for this recipe. The chicken was bland, the arugula made my mouth feel as though I had been eating sand at the park all day, (which gave me a better understanding of why my 18 month old is so cranky when we come home from a day of sand-eating), the potatoes were so-so. My dislike for the dish made me even more sad when I realized that this is the first time in 15 years that Martha has failed me. Martha? Why did you have to harsh my mellow?
The next dud came courtesy of Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa, another cook for whom I have the utmost respect and rely upon to publish failproof recipes. The recipe was for Ina's Outrageous Oreo cookies, which I found published in Oprah's magazine a few years ago. Oprah, another woman who ususally knows her food. Anyway - I am so very sad about these brownies. I can't even talk about it. Just trust me, and don't waste your time cooking this (very involved and time-consuming) recipe.
Last, but not least, we have the Kielbasa, Cabbage and Rice soup from this month's Food and Wine magazine. I love, love, love kielbasa. It's crazy, really. I also am very found of cabbage and rice. Sure, the ingredients list looked a little sparse, but I hoped that this was one of those dishes that was greater than the sum of its parts. And what great parts with which to begin! But it was not to be. This soup was sooooo bland and tasteless, I picked out all the kielbasa and threw the rest away. If you knew me, you would know that this is a HUGE statement.
So that's it for this post. Stay tuned for more fun and excitement in the kitchen! Tonight I plan to bake the Confetti Bakery's recipe for vanilla sugar cookies, which cookies I will then attempt to decorate in an artistic manner. If you knew me, you would know how funny an undertaking this will be!
Sunday, March 29, 2009
I bought the mix from Williams Sonoma. They had chocolate and vanilla, I chose vanilla.
In the box, you will find the cupcake mix and sprinkle decorations.
You need to supply your own eggs, butter, and milk for the cupcakes. If you plan to make your own frosting, you will also need to have those ingredients on hand. The back of the Sprinkles box has a recipe for frosting which is quite good, though a little sweet for my taste.
After you mix, cream, beat and add all the ingredients, you will end up with these tasty morsels of yumminess:
Here's a closer look. I know, I know, the sprinkles make the cupcakes look a little like a part of the female anatomy.
My verdict? The cupcakes were very good. Much better than any I have made from scratch. They were moist, and sweet and tasted homemade. The decorations are absolutely horrible, though. Do not eat them! The frosting is great, too, but very, very sweet.
Here's the deal - if I am using a mix, I want the ease of a mix. I want to dump the ingredients in a bowl, mix everything together with a fork, dump the concoction in a pan and be done with it. The Sprinkles mix had me creaming butter, beating my mix with an electric mixer, and adding eggs one at a time. It was as much work as making cupcakes from scratch. The only shortcut I gained from using the mix was that I did not have to mix any dry ingredients. To me, mixing the dry ingredients is the easiest part of baking. It's the creaming and beating I can do without. So although the cupcakes tasted better than any I have yet to bake from scratch, I plan to save my next $14 and continue my search for the perfect cupcake recipe. In a pinch, a box of Duncan Hines cake mix purchased for $1 on sale will make my daughter just as happy as a $14 box of fancy mix.
For those of you keeping score, the mix and the frosting add up to two new recipes I tried recently. I am so far behind. But don't despair, I have weeks to catch up!
Thursday, March 5, 2009
Forget your lust for the rich man's gold
Boy, don't you worry... you'll find yourself.
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
Monday, March 2, 2009
Sunday, March 1, 2009
Saturday, February 28, 2009
Friday, February 27, 2009
Sorry, 35 for making you come up with all of the quotes of the day lately. I have had a weeks-long brain freeze! This one goes well with the last one 35 posted, don't you think, readers? (Mom??? Hello, Mom?)
Runners up: Vomit, fecal matter.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Monday, February 23, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Saturday, February 21, 2009
Friday, February 20, 2009
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
I bought my DSLR after my third child was born. No matter how hard I tried, I could not get a good picture of the boy with my point and shoot. The problem was that 99% of my picture taking was happening inside in poor lighting conditions. With the point and shoot, I had two choices, I could use the flash, which completely washed out my son's pale complexion, or I could ramp up the ISO, which invariably lead to a shot so grainy I wound up deleting it. I needed a fast lens and a camera with better low-light capabilities. I needed a DSLR.
Unfortunately, buying a DSLR was not, as I had expected, the immediate answer to my picture-taking woes. In fact, I had new woes. My images now lacked sharpness and the colors were dull and lifeless. Nothing I did improved the quality of my photographs. I was frustrated and upset. I considered returning the camera, since I preferred the pictures I took with my point and shoot to the ones I was now getting. I went back to where I purchased the camera. The salesperson told me that I was expecting too much and would never get well-optimized images straight out of the camera. He told me that all DSLR images need some post processing. I was outraged. I could not believe that I bought an $800 camera that could not produce, without significant work on my part, images that were at least comparable to those produced by my $200 point and shoot.
After much investigation, I discovered that it IS possible to get great straight out of the camera shots with a DSLR. I'll say it again - you can get great SOOC shots! The secret is in the processing, as the salesperson had told me, but the in-camera processing, not post processing. It turns out point and shoots are specifically manufactured to produce sharp, saturated snapshots that are pleasing to the consumer eye. Manufacturers achieve this by setting the cameras' default settings to automatically apply fairly heavy-handed in-camera processing. In other words, the cameras are pre-set to add sharpness and saturation to the images they capture. DSLRs, on the other hand, either apply very light processing, or no processing at all, depending on whether you are shooting in JPEG or RAW. This deficit of in-camera processing allows you, as the photographer, to control how you want your photographs to look. You can control the look of your photographs one of two ways - you can spend time post processing, or you can change the in-camera settings on your camera. Now, I am not saying that you won't want to post-process your photos. What I am saying is that, in most instances, if you get your exposure right (more on that to follow), you will not HAVE to post-process.
Here's what you should do: Sit down with your camera's manual. All DSLRs have menus that allow you to go in and tweak the camera's settings. Learn how to do this. Play with your camera. Decide whether you like the bright, contrasty colors produced by your camera's "Vivid" (on Nikons) setting, or if you prefer colors that are more true to life. Determine how much sharpening you want applied to your pictures in-camera. Is your camera shooting dark? Play with the exposure compensation setting. You can change anything you want. Anytime you want. And that is a beautiful thing.
Monday, February 16, 2009
1 cup fine stone-ground yellow cornmeal (the cookbook recommends Arrowhead Mills brand)
1 1/2 tsps baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
8 tbsps (1 stick), unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly (I always use salted butter)
3/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup milk
1. Adjust oven rack to the middle position and heat oven to 400 degrees.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
"How dare you? How old are you now, anyway?"
The White Stripes
This quote/song has been on a continuous loop in my head for about two weeks now. Hopefully, it will not invade your brain as it has mine.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Friday, February 13, 2009
The Quote of the Day Challenge. This is where I post a favorite quote (and 40, please feel free to participate, I hope you do. Whoever gets here first everyday wins! By wins, I mean for that day, you know, the privilege of posting the prestigious "quote of the day"). There are no rules to this challenge, simply just that there needs to be a quote every day. It can come from anywhere although I'm guessing that 99% will be from music, and that 75% of that will be Rolling Stones or White Stripes. The quote may be profound or it may be silly or even mean- there may be an explanation as to why it was chosen that day or there may not. Probably most will come with explanations because the art history major in me loves to analyze and talk about it. But we'll see how this goes. I'm going to start simple for 2 reasons: 1) Because you should always start simple and 2)I thought this was a great idea since I have quotes floating through my head constantly and we (the trio- my mom, my sister and I) often speak in what we call "rock speak" which is just quoting songs appropriately in conversation (sometimes inappropriately but whatever...). But now that I have issued the challenge my mind has gone blank.
So here goes:
" The sunshine bores the daylights out of me"
-The Rolling Stones
Not actually a favorite of mine, this one is popular with 40 and our mom. I thinks it's fine, just not my favorite. I'll try harder tomorrow.
The cookies turned out really well. The white chocolate, oatmeal and vanilla all blend together to form a chewy, sweet cookie. Next time I plan to substitute semisweet chocolate for the white chocolate and dried cherries for the apricots.
Martha Stewart's White Chocolate and Apricot Oatmeal Cookies
1.5 cups all-purpose flour
1.5 cups old-fashioned oatmeal
1/2 tsp baking soda
8 oz (2 sticks) unsalted butter (I used salted), softened
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed light-brown sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
2 large eggs
8 oz. which chocolate, chopped (I used chips)
7 oz. dried apricots, chopped (1.5 cups)
1. Mix flour, oatmeal and baking soda in a medium bowl. Cream
butter and sugars with a mixer until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to
low. Add salt, vanilla, and eggs, and beat until well combined, about 1
minute. Add flour mixture gradually, beating until just combined.
Stir in chocolate and apricots. Cover and refrigerate until cold, about 30
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
3. Drop heaping tablespoons of dough onto parchment-lined baking
sheets, spacing 2 inches apart. Bake until cookies are golden brown around
the edges but still soft in the center, 14-16 minutes. Let cookies cool on
baking sheets for 2 minutes, then transfer to wire rack. cookies will
keep, covered, for up to 1 week.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
D: "Yeah, and I have a question."
40: "Uh huh?" (Fighting back panic.)
D: "So, I know that the boy has a cell and the girl has a cell and the boy pees out his cell and the boy and girl cells get together and make a baby."
D: "But HOW do the cells get together?"
40, fighting an overwhelming urge to flee screaming from the room, calmly, and as vaguely as possible, explains to D how the boy and girl cells meet.
D: "That's GROSS!" Waits a beat. "You and Daddy did THAT?!?"
Roadblock #2 is money. I don't have the money I need to make major changes to my home. Let's be honest here- if I had money, I would probably just move anyway.
But I like the challenge of small space living. I also really believe that it can be done and done well. If you don't believe me, check www.apartmenttherapy.com. I am obsessed with it. It shows that small space living is not only a necessity depending on where you live, but can be a choice for some people. Let's pretend that's the case with me.
(and my apologies to the city I live in. I don't think you're second rate, it's just the word on the street.)
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Monday, February 9, 2009
I am doing this because I recently realized that what I believed to be an interest in cooking is, in fact, a recipe-collecting addiction. The fact that I work in a library makes this problem all the greater. As a library employee, many a cookbook crosses my desk. And, I assure you, not one cookbook has passed my desk that did not contain at least one, often many, many more than one, recipe that I deemed worthy of photocopying. Herein lies the problem. In addition to the dozens of cookbooks I had to buy because I could not photocopy all the good recipes they contained, (I only get 5 free photocopies a day at the library), I have stacks and stacks of photocopied recipes. And stacks of recipes I ripped out of magazines. And stacks of recipes given to me by friends. Okay, you get the picture. So - in an ongoing effort to rid my house of clutter (HA HA), I decided to weed out my recipe collection. But how? By actually cooking some of the recipes I have been hording and determine whether or not a recipe is worthy of saving. I know that 52 recipes won't make much of a dent in my pile, but at least I will feel better about the pile. This may not sound like much of a challenge to you. After all, Julie Powell conquered the great art of french cooking. But trust me, for a a stay at home mom of three, with two part-time jobs, just feeding my family is an accomplishment. Frankly, I have already found myself wanting to throw in the towel. Instead, I have decided to journal my experience and make myself accountable. I plan to include recipes and pictures so that you can follow along at home.
Let the cooking begin!
Sunday, February 8, 2009
Besides the five years' (Uhm, I mean, six - this lying thing does not come easily to me), difference, there are other differences between us that we thought would add a little humor and interest to our blog. Basically, it goes like this - 35 is a tall, thin, strawberry-blonde who majored in art history and fashion design. She loves all things fashion, and as a child spent hours in her bedroom creating new outfits and playing with makeup. You should have seen her Cyndi Lauper phase! These days, you can find her, dressed in the latest fashion, poring over fashion magazines and blogs. She still disappears into her room to play with makeup. 35 is a city girl. I, on the other hand, am an on-the-short-side, plump, used to be blonde. I majored in psychology and went to law school. I have about three outfits that I wear, none of them fashionable. I do like makeup, though. I live in the suburbs and drive a mini-van. Now, lest you think my sister and I are polar-opposites, I should also tell you that we were once asked if we were twins, our significant others, and sometimes our parents, cannot tell us apart on the telephone, Billy Corgan's voice brings us both to tears, and we are both passionate about the White Stripes, good lyrics, and discussing Mick Jagger's antics. We are both opinionated, and neither of us likes to be wrong. We talk on the phone so many times a day, myhusband asks "What more could you two possibly have to say to each other?" There is more, but suffice it to say that we like to think that our differences compliment our similarities.
And oh yeah, as my sister said, don't expect too much from us at first. We like to set the bar low. But who knows? We might just surprise you.
Friday, February 6, 2009
This is a blog about our lives. Our lives aren't very interesting but we think we are pretty funny. Previously, we planned to waste our writing skills on romance novels. Who knows? Maybe we did. We'd never use our real names so only we know for sure.
Don't expect too much from this blog right away, neither one of us is very technologically savvy. 40's husband is, but maybe we'll do this on our own.