Friday, October 28, 2011

Ninjas, Losing Stuff and Mediocre Meatballs

It has been a few weeks since my last "Fess Up". It's not like I am low on material! 


Here we go!

My sister and her husband brought their boys over for our 20th Anniversary party a couple of weeks ago (I said I was catching up!) and one of her four taught them a new trick. Pretty slick ninja masks! I asked my sister where they got the idea. She said her son came up with it, creativity flows freely in our family... it just comes out in strange ways sometimes... but that's a story for another time.

My Love and I took a trip to Sonoma County, California for a short getaway to celebrate our anniversary. I had a couple of strange moments. No, not because of too much wine...but, too much pictures? I am not entirely sure, but here are a couple of the shots that would have raised my eyebrow... if I could do that sort of thing...
I took about 5 pictures of my sandy feet. I love having sandy feet, but how many pictures do I NEED of them, really?

This is the first picture of myself I have seen from the behind and not gasped in horror at the size of my caboose. Not that it is smaller, but for some reason, it did not strike disgust, distress, or even a negative thought. Cool huh?

During the hot air balloon ride we flew over a beautiful cornfield. So beautiful, in fact, that I took like 15 pictures of the corn. From this angle. What was I thinking? I have no idea. Guess never seeing corn from above before I went a little crazy.

Since we've been home I have been losing things. Those of you who follow me know I am constantly battling clutter. The combination of being super busy before our party, doing marginal/basic "pick up" housecleaning, and misplacing a few important items led me to do some major sort/organize/clean out projects. Here is one of them. The toy boxes in my youngest fella's room have suffered neglect. When Daddy's office keys went missing somewhere in the house, we had to look in all the potential places. We couldn't imagine where they went or what my little guy did with them since he carries them around everywhere but never puts them down where they don't belong. Until now.
 With a deep sigh, I plunged head first into the toy boxes and pulled everything out, removing toys that he'd long since grown out of, retrieving all the ABC blocks from various places and praying to find the keys some how, some way.

I did not find the keys (I did eventually - in the crack of the armchair), but if you look closely you can see the blocks I found... this must have been an "Irregular" discount toy based on the alphabet configuration. Comparing the pictures I hardly notice a difference. I swear I cleaned stuff out. Really. Honest. 

My Love has been so amused by my cleaning up/out piles of whatever to find our missing stuff he has joked about hiding my cell phone or some other key items to get me to clean out other parts of the house he finds annoying (he is pretty meticulous about how he keeps "his" stuff). I smiled. He smiled back. I am a work in progress. He loves me.

This year we elected not to spend a ginormous fortune on pumpkin patch pumpkins and so we took them to our local roadside pumpkin stand... there were LOTS to choose from. Ironically, it didn't take any less time to pick out a pumpkin...

 but there was definite happiness happening despite skipping the viney $$/lb pumpkin patch.

We also went up to Greenbluff to get some apples. This was the highlight of their trip... the balloon guy.  Star Wars "helmets" and "light sabers" for everyone! We only lost one saber while apple picking for about 10 minutes. The apples were picked over and the ground was quite muddy after lots of rain. We stopped at my favorite organic orchard and got most of what we needed instead. I will have fresh picked apples for my Christmas apple pie. That makes me happy!

In the last few weeks I have tried to spruce up my cooking. There has been some success and some notable failures.
Flat, burnt or with corners - how do you like your snickerdoodles? I made my usual recipe. However, I was interrupted about three times during the flour scooping portion of the baking process and it took two tries and an oven temperature adjustment to get them right... and they still had "corners" because I had to jam as many as possible on the cookie sheet to get them finished on time for the Bosses Day celebration at my hubby's work.

Mediocre meatballs: A dear friend of mine is an extraordinary chef.
She gave me her favorite recipe for meatballs.

This is not what they were supposed to look like.

Again, my little interrupters can take some of the blame but my not reading the instructions thoroughly (like I put TOO many bread-not so exactly "crumbs" into the meat, forgot an ingredient or two, and instead of chopping the onions I lazily -she warned me not to- did them in the food processor which turned them to mushy soup texture.) also contributed to this disaster (well, they were edible so not a total disaster).

The recipe I doubled made about 16 meatballs that tasted more like "burger pops". If only they had been on a stick! I am currently considering marketing them to Starbucks to go alongside cake pops. What do you think of a ketchup dipping sauce accompaniment? Or maybe since they are ugly I could coat them  in a hard ketchup coating like the cake pops have that cool pink coating?
Hmmm.... well, maybe not.
Next time I will have ALL the ingredients and PRINT the recipe instead of running back and forth to the computer stepping over a plastic Kawasaki ride-on motorcycle, errant bouncy balls and kids wielding giant pencils (their San Francisco souvenirs I insisted on) like swords.

Awesome White Bean Chicken Chili: To leave you on a high note (like George Costanza from Seinfeld recommends) I made this. Hopefully it looks good in the picture. I know what it tastes like. It is YUMMY!!!! My chef friend didn't have a favorite recipe for white bean chicken chili, so after looking at several from Bon Appetite, Kraft Foods, and Real Simple websites I decided to concoct my own.

I had to roast and grind cumin seeds ( I bought them for another recipe that I have NO idea now what it was) since I was out of powdered cumin - a key ingredient. I had to use my protein shake blender to grind the seeds since I apparently no longer have a coffee grinder (I discovered today after cleaning out two of the most likely locations). I made a gigantic crock pot full and gave half of it to a friend. It felt victorious to make something so yummy after the mediocre meatballs earlier this week! 

I will post our pumpkin carving with my "Fess Ups" for next week, along with my answer to the Halloween or not to Halloween question... 

Blessings and Happy Fall!


Kira said...

Wow, so many wonderful pictures and memories and thoughts! Loved this post. I think we bought pumpkins at the same stand. Small world :)

I'm going to have to show my boys that picture of hte ninja masks (was that a shirt? Do they have their faces through the arm hole?) They will be impressed.

Thanks for fessing up with me and please forgive me for not commenting until THURSDAY! Sheesh. My life is a jumble this week.

Jennifer - Live Courageous! said...

Their faces are through the neck hole. Apparently you tie the sleeves together behind your head. ;) Tempting for when you need quiet? I think so!

No worries. I know generally and sometimes specifically what your life looks like. :)

Blessings on the rest of your week!

Who am I?

My photo
I have been married to my best friend for over 29 years and our children are 16, 15 and 12 years old. I have struggled with infertility, suffered the loss of a baby by miscarriage, and endured multiple career paths. I have experienced a crisis of faith that shook me to the core and lost dear friends to tragic death. I have a personal relationship with Jesus which is essential to surviving and even thriving in my circumstances. I hope you will be blessed by my heart and words. Thank you for being here..