Monday, February 28, 2011

Just Another Manic Monday

1. I cannot remember the last time I was as sick as I was last week. Pat cannot remember a time I have EVER been that sick. Each and every day, I would be convinced that the next day I would feel better, and I just never got better. It was devastating. Usually I bounce back from an illness or injury pretty quickly. I thought I was going to be heading to the hospital if I couldn't get the shivering under control. I had the flu at the beginning of the week, and then at the end of the week, I had a sinus infection and bronchitis.

2. I was wearing two pair of pajama pants at most times next week because I was SO COLD! So cold, I would take shower after shower after shower trying to warm up, it was the only five minutes of the day I was actually warm.

3. Bless Patrick's heart, he was a lot of help during all this, and he had a lot on his plate as well. I think he is ready to run away for awhile. I don't think he is interested in being a stay at home dad.

4. I need to go replenish my medicine supply at Costco this week. I refuse to buy ibuprofen or Tylenol anywhere else because you get a million and one pills for next to nothing at Costco, compared to other places. I also feel this way about trash bags. I always hate spending like 17 dollars up front for trash bags, but OMG, I don't have to buy them again for MONTHS, and I would spend WAY more than that other places.

5. I am WEAK today. I feel like I was hit by a bus, and I am finally learning to stand up again. I have ZERO energy. I think the small amount of muscle I have atrophied.

6. I watched a lot of Real Housewives of Orange County when I was in bed, a city of Real Housewives that I haven't watched in the past, and OMG, where do these women come from? I have to say I had many feverish thoughts about dumping Patrick and running away to the OC to find one of these men who would lavish me with diamonds and probably have a house cleaner come in to take care of the house (ESPECIALLY WHEN I AM SICK), but none the less, I am still here cleaning up after the madness that was last week. Such is life! :-)

7. The Pioneer Woman didn't tweet me after my success of cooking my way through her cookbook. I am kind of mad at her right now, but it will pass soon!

8. My kids are in a HUGE talking back phase, I think a Costco size bottle of Dial soap needs to make the list. Seriously, how do I break this? It is making Pat and I crazy.

9. I am desperate to see the Charlie Sheen interview this morning on the Today Show. You KNOW it is going to come on when I take Jackson to school. Murphy's Law!

10. Gas-HOLY GAS PRICES PEOPLE! If there was ever a reason to home school, it is that I am sick of paying an arm and a leg to fill up my car! Did that just make you all laugh, me. . .homeschooling!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


One year ago today, I received The Pioneer Woman Cookbook for my birthday, and I vowed to cook my way through the whole cookbook in one year. It was a challenge, and I don't follow through on many things, but I stuck to it, and I learned so much about myself along the way. While I am not feeling very well today, I am content in knowing that I completed something great during my 30th year of life. Here's my review of all the recipes!

*BBQ Jalapeno Poppers- not a huge fan
*Pico de Gallo-I would use less onion and more than 1/2 of a lime
*Guacamole-Best Guac recipe ever, I always add more salt, taste, add salt, etc.
*PW'S Potato Skins-The most wonderful thing I have ever eaten-BEST Potato Skins EVER!
*Katie's Roasted Corn Salad-Soooooooo much flavor
*Hot Artichoke Dip-Always a Crowd Pleaser

*Cinnamon Rolls-delicious but LOTS of work
*Iny's Prune Cake with Buttermilk Icing-surprisingly good, kids loved, tastes like coffee cake
*Buttermilk Biscuits-would be really good for Biscuits and Gravy
*Egg-In-The-Hole-a staple in this house now
*Basic Breakfast Potatoes-SOOOOOOOOOOO GOOD!
*PW Breakfast Burritos-a lot of flavor, love the chives
*Breakfast Bowls-a real treat!
*Marmalade Muffins-heavenly!
*Migas-has WAY TOO MANY PEPPERS in my personal opinion, but I am a little sensitive to that!
*French Breakfast Puffs-better than donuts
*Maple Pecan Scones-my sister called them Pancake Scones, so buttery and full of maple flavor, SO GOOD!
*Huevos Hyacinth-I love any excuse to use a ramekin
*Edna Mae's Sour Cream Pancakes-very unique flavor, good change up on the standard pancake

DINNER (Translation:Lunch)
*Simple, Perfect Chili-OK, not a lot of flavor
*Marlboro Man's Favorite Sandwich-top with mozzarella cheese-wonderful
*Onion Strings-could be a meal alone for me-DELICIOUS
*Spicy Pulled Pork-Not worth spending 6-7 hours cooking, but good
*Macaroni and Cheese-I love her recipe, Pat and the kids didn't, give it a try and let me know what you think
*Beans and Cornbread-beans DELICIOUS, cornbread NOT SO MUCH
*Sherried Tomato Soup-Best Tomato Soup I have ever had that is not from La Madeleine
*Pizza Crust-AMAZING!
*Potato-Leek Pizza-I seriously cannot describe in words how super fantastic this pizza is! You just have to try it yourself.
*Cowboy Calzone-like an enchilada in a pizza pocket-YUM

*Perfect Pot Roast-I don't like Pot Roast, I liked this one
*Chicken Pot Pie-totally worth all the work that goes into it
*Perfect Pie Crust-yummy, but I don't think pie crusts are my specialty
*Chicken Spaghetti-this recipe will serve like 20 people, I divide it into two pans and freeze one, reheats beautifully!

SUPPER (Translation:Dinner)
*Chicken Fried Steak-it was ok, but the gravy was really good
*PW's Creamy Mashed Potatoes-BEST MASHED POTATOES ANYWHERE-this woman knows potatoes
*Meatloaf-meatloaf part was good, I didn't care for the bacon and sauce so much, you know it isn't great if I don't like the bacon part :-)
*Twice Baked Potatoes-again, really good potato, these freeze perfectly
*Fried Chicken-I don't fry things in my house, I would fry this again
*Braised Beef Brisket-it was ok, but I lived in TX for quite some time, I like Rudy's brisket
*Cheese Grits-I am a potato girl, I would have potatoes in place of these any day of the week
*Rib-Eye Steak with Whiskey Cream Sauce-The sauce is the best thing I have ever put on a steak-incredible
*Homemade Ranch with Iceberg Wedge-I didn't even know I liked an iceberg wedge until I got to put this wonderful dressing on it, beats anything from a bottle
*Comfort Meatballs-good
*Simple, Perfect Enchiladas-I like Katie's better
*Linguine With Clam Sauce-not a fan, but others liked
*Penne Alla Betsy-blah

*Roasted Beef Tenderloin-YUM
*Burgundy Mushrooms-anything that simmers in wine for nine hours, will be amazing
*Creamy Rosemary Potatoes-anyone who likes rosemary want to move in with me? so good
*Olive Cheese Bread-if you like olives, really good
*Creme Brulee-I like my recipe better

*Patsy's Blackberry Cobbler-frozen fruit works great
*Flat Apple Pie-hard to make, add caramel sauce
*Chocolate Sheet Cake-great to feed to a large crowd
*Mocha Brownies-really "coffeeish"
*Oatmeal Crispies-add white chocolate chips and cranberries-absolutely fabulous
*Pineapple Upside-Down Cake (In An Iron Skillet)-LOVE
*Peach Crisp With Maple Cream Sauce-heavenly
*Red Velvet Cake-didn't care too much for cake part, LOVED frosting
*Angel Sugar Cookies-delightful

Sunday, February 20, 2011

A Look Into the Past Few Days


WEDNESDAY. Jackson gets off the bus, and he isn't really himself. He doesn't have a temperature, but he is just a little off. By 5pm, he is a little warm, and just ready to go to bed.

THURSDAY. Jackson stays home from school. Tyler goes to school. Jackson doesn't move from the couch all morning. Pat decides that Jackson needs to go to the doctor. The doctor gives him a strep test and flu test. The flu test is positive. $60 is spent on Tami Flu. About 10pm he is BURNING up, we give him a cool bath, he screams through the whole thing, I feel like I am up checking on a newborn baby all night long. Around 1 he feels much cooler.

FRIDAY. My mom comes to get Tyler to hang out with her, take her back to her house and keep her occupied while Jackson occupies my couch. Around 7PM, my mom says she starts to feel warm. She sleeps all night and feels better in the morning.

SATURDAY. About 10AM, we go to my mom's house, 35.10 miles away. We all have breakfast together. About noon, Pat and I leave both kids there, Tyler feels a little warm, but nothing serious. 3:30PM my mom calls and says that Tyler is not herself. Pat and I cancel our plans with Lori and John (I cry), we jump in the car to head back to Mesa to meet my mom at a Walgreen's Take Care Clinic, they were so busy they weren't accepting anymore patients. After much calling around, we ended up at a CVS Minute Clinic located at about Power and McKellips. The nurse practitioner there diagnosed her with a sinus infection and gave her an antibiotic. She was jumping around and fine begging me to stay at my mom's house. Finally, against my better judgment I agree. Pat and I drive back home, call Lori and John to see if we can just go out a little later. They agree, we go out. We wait over an hour for a seat at Cibo. When we are finally seated, we get to sit in the Carriage House, so charming and quaint. I am excited. The food is wonderful. I laugh so hard my stomach hurts. I am exhausted. Lori MAKES us go to Lucky Strike which a cross between a Glendale and Scottsdale club on Saturday night. I see more cleavage than I need to see while bowling. My mom calls, Tyler is really warm. We tell her to give her some more medicine. We go play some pool. I call my mom when we get home, she says Tyler was really hot, just kept moaning, finally fell asleep. We set alarm for 2 am so that we can discuss her status again.

SUNDAY. At 2am she is cooler. At 7 when I call she is just sitting on the couch watching Hannah Montana. I say I will just come pick her up after we go to breakfast. My mom says no come after her nap. She says she will keep Jackson until tomorrow. I say no I am just coming to pick them both up because if I have to drive 35.10 miles tomorrow because my mom ends up sick I MIGHT JUST LOSE MY MIND! Plus, I really think my mom deserves a BREAK! It is brutal staying up in the middle of the night with these kids! This family just cannot catch a break! Needless to say Pat and I have spent the entire morning cleaning this house, a far cry from the Phoenician Brunch we had planned, but we did sneak out for a half and hour and had a WONDERFUL burger at Burger Studio (7th St and Mountain View), if you haven't been, must go, the onion rings are HEAVENLY!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

It's beeen awhile since I did one of these, but here goes.

1. AJ's is definitely my comfort food of choice. Whenever I have a bad day, I crave AJ's. I don't know why. Something about the comfort of that grocery store makes me happy. I always get the Pilgrim's Picnic sandwich with couscous salad as my side. Mmmmmmm!

2. Today is the Spring Tasting for Z'Tejas. It is seriously one of my most favorite days of the year. Something about tasting food before it is released to the public and being able to comment on it.

3. My mom is taking Jackson and Tyler lunch at school today. They are over the moon about it. It is the little things in life really!

4. If you have lived here for awhile, and you frequented Metro Center before it was SCARY, there was wonderful restaurant there, Round the Corner, all the tables had phones on them, when you were ready to order, you would pick up the phone and be connected to a cashier. When the food was ready, your phone would ring. I MISS THAT PLACE! Such fond memories of shopping after school on Fridays with my grandma and mom.

5. We went to Pancho's this weekend. It was as disgusting as I remember it. I will not be returning. It is on my list with Applebee's. I don't plan on stepping foot in either again before I die.

6. Katie's Roasted Corn Salad from the Pioneer Woman cookbook is INCREDIBLE!

7. I have four recipes left before I am done with the entire cookbook.

8. I am sooooooooooooo over cooking.

9. My new favorite obsession is Pretty Little Liars. It is this stupid ABC Family show, and I have no idea why I watch it, but they sucked me in.

10. BYE BYE CRAZY MICHELLE from The Bachelor. SOOOOOOOOOOO glad Brad sent her packing this week. Emily is still hanging in there, and I just love her. My second favorite is the mortuary girl, but it looks like Brad might be a little weirded out by her next week.

Monday, February 14, 2011

How I Know Pat Loves Me!

1. He believes in me.

2. He is my number one cheerleader.

3. He doesn't think there is one thing that I couldn't do if I set my mind to it.

4. He encourages me.

5. He listens to me talk about the same thing for hours.

6. He always has my back.

7. He knows and openly admits that I am smarter than him.

8. He eats take out even though he would rather go the restaurant and eat it.

9. He cleans up after all my "spills"! SERIOUSLY, I am a KLUTZ people!

10. He encourages me to do things out of my comfort zone.

I saw on one episode of Oprah this season, they talked about loving someone, and how when you love someone you only want them to be the best they can be, even if it means it might interfere with your life a little bit.

He loves me.

He always wants the best for me, and he never stops to consider how my latest or greatest plan might be detrimental to his life. He is always willing to make it work.

Happy Valentine's Day!

I love you Patrick, and you are PERFECT for me!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Ronald McDonald House

What a FANTASTIC and awesome evening Tuesday night was!!! The moms in Tyler's class all got together and organized making dinner for the families at the Ronald McDonald House. It was a LOT of work, but totally and completely worth it all. If you are part of any sort of group, I would totally encourage you to organize a trip there. The people you meet there will change your life. The families are so thankful for what you are doing, so willing to talk and tell anyone who will listen their story, and they are so kind, even in the face of such tragedy.

We did a taco/nacho bar, and it was super easy to make a sign up sheet to tell people what to bring. Everyone was very generous with their donations, and I think the food ended up tasting pretty yummy if I do say so myself. I mean, you really CANNOT beat nacho cheese sauce from a can. You might think you make a better cheese sauce, but if you went to Xavier and grew up eating bagels with nacho cheese twice a day, you know nacho cheese from a can is the best.

If you would like any help organizing your own dinner, or have any questions, don't hesitate to ask, it is my new favorite way to spend an evening.

Thursday, February 10, 2011


I don't know that I have ever truly been in shock before. I can't remember the last time something happened where I felt like I had been one hundred percent surprised. I am usually so inquisitive and nosy, that I feel like I have a "premonition" before something is going to happen. However, last Friday, I received a phone call that I NEVER thought I would receive. I didn't even imagine it ever happening. I didn't think it was even a possibility.

I am crazy. I make up ALL SORTS of scenarios in my head. I mean, seriously people are dead before they are born, I have people hired and fired the same day, I expect the worst. I mean honestly, I am a glass is half empty kind of girl, and I am pleasantly surprised when things turn out a little differently. I don't like this about myself, and I would LOVE to change it, I am certain it would help to alleviate some of the immense stress I feel like I am constantly under.

I don't know if one is supposed to feel more tired than they ever have in their entire life when they are in shock. Yesterday, I considered driving myself to the hospital and committing myself to the loony bin-JUST SO THAT I COULD SLEEP! I think I was more tired yesterday than when I had mono. My mind is constantly racing. I am not certain I am even really paying attention to anyone else who might be talking to me. I feel like I just walk around in a daze! I know I am tired. I am one hundred percent, without a doubt, identical to a toddler when I am tired. I start crying about everything. The thought of making dinner last night was so insurmountable that I just laid in bed and cried at 4 in the afternoon. I was curled up under the covers crying because I didn't want to make dinner. Very similar to a toddler who cries because they don't want to get dressed, don't like the breakfast that was served to them, etc. I fully admit it is completely and totally insane. Leave all the negative comments you want, I know it is crazy.

Almost a week later, and I still can't really wrap my head around it. I don't let my mind go there very often, and I have kept VERY BUSY this week to make sure that my mind doesn't go there. But when it does, it is a deep dark pit of despair, and I don't know how I am going to get out. I am angry, sad, and sick to my stomach all at the same time.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Super Bowl Sunday

For as long as I can remember, Super Bowl has always been a "holiday" in our house. My definition of holiday is so much different than other people. Growing up, my parents fought a lot, but on "holidays" they didn't fight. I don't have any bad memories of Super Bowl Sunday. Everyone was always laughing, eating, having a good time. Maybe it was all the food, maybe it was the alcohol, but Super Bowl Sunday is up there with Disneyland and Christmas in my mind of wonderful things/places.

We have a little gambling game we play, and I always remember having to go to bed before the end of the game, and waking up in the morning and wondering if I had won or not?

I remember not understanding what the big deal surrounding commercials was. I didn't get the jokes, didn't really know why we had to suddenly take an interest in commercials when usually that was time for a potty break.

I still love fighting with Katie that a sub sandwich is the only thing one should eat on Super Bowl. And her telling me she only like Subway subs, and that the grocery store ones are gross because there is too much bread. (We are doing a "Soup"er Bowl theme this year to avoid the sub sandwich debate, but now I have to listen to Pat complain that it isn't Super Bowl food!)

AND, I almost forgot. . .every year, my grandma talks about how spicy her chili is, and how your mouth is going to be on fire. Each and every year, it is not spicy at all, but we all laugh as soon as she says it!

Honestly the list of memories and good times goes on and on and on and on!

I am so happy to have Lori and John in town this year to celebrate with us. Have I mentioned how much I love Lori. I need to start doing sit ups to prepare myself for all the laughing I plan on doing!

Anyone else have an Super Bowl traditions? Memories? Or am I the only crazy one who gets all sentimental over the Super Bowl!?

Thursday, February 3, 2011


Tuesday, Oprah's show was all about going Vegan. In no way shape or form will I ever be vegan, I would miss eggs and cheese WAY TOO MUCH. OMG, the thought of no eggs seriously sends me over the edge. But, the reason I write this is because it is totally an episode that I would normally delete, but my Brother in Law works for Cargill, an international producer and marketer of food, agricultural, financial and industrial products and services, that allowed cameras and Lisa Ling inside their slaughter house in Fort Morgan. I knew that being a Go Vegan type show, that Cargill was not going to be looked upon in a favorable light, but I was PLEASANTLY surprised at what a Class Act the show turned out to be. I think it has to be the best representation of people who are OBVIOUSLY on completely different ends of the spectrum coming together and talking about what are the major concerns, changes that could be made, and etc. If nothing else, watch some of the clips just to see what can happen when people respect one another and their opinions. It is unbelievable.

I think the MOST FASCINATING thing I learned from the show was about Temple Grandin. You may recognize the name because Claire Danes has won numerous awards this very Awards Season for her portrayal of Temple in a movie on HBO, and Temple is at all the Awards Shows, and she always cheers wildly for Claire when she receives the award. Claire always thanks her, it is this beautiful relationship that has formed. Needless to say, I am dying to see it, but they mentioned her name because Cargill has a very "humane and dignified" method of slaughtering the cows as they become the meat many of us eat. APPARENTLY Temple Grandin designed the system and is the absolute authority on livestock, treatment, handling, slaughter, I mean SERIOUSLY! SERIOUSLY, check out this website and see all she has done-UNBELIEVABLE!

Of course what do I do after I watch the show, I tweet @Oprah and ask her if wine is vegan! I don't want all those poor vegans out there being denied!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Something Deep

Something deep and profound hit me as I was watching the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills reunion show Part 2 last night! By far the BEST city so far to have a Real Housewives recorded there, but that's a story for a different day!

Anyway, if you watch, you know that Kyle and Kim are sisters, their other sister happens to be Kathy Hilton (Paris Hilton's mom), but that's a story for a different day too! Kyle and Kim have a ROCKY relationship, but the love that they have for one another is so deep. It reminds me much of my own relationship with my sister! I think the reason that Kyle and Kim, along with Katie and I, have such a difficult time maintaining this picture perfect relationship is because we are so real with one another. Kyle calls Kim out and vice versa, and I know for for a fact that I have said NUMEROUS things to Katie that I would never say to anyone else. I think this happens for two reasons:

(1) With a sister, you are put in positions to discuss things that you might not have to with other people. I know I have hurt her by wanting to do things without her occasionally. With a friend, they don't know what you are doing virtually every second of the day, my sister and I text about 500 times a week. No one else knows where I am or what I am doing all the time. No one else really cares. So, for this very reason, I think it is hard on the sister.

(2) I know she will love me no matter what. I am BRUTALLY honest with her! BRUTALLY. If I don't like something that someone else does, I just discuss it with Pat and either remove myself from the situation or ignore it. With Katie, the sh** just spews from my mouth. It is like I am taken over by some greater being and the looks of disgust and eye rolling come forth. Again, we spend massive amounts of time together, and I think anyone who spends that much time together will have their issues (See: Pat and I after one or the other being sick for five weeks=divorce court!). I need to be more patient with her and realize that she keeps all my deepest. darkest secrets!

Anyway, my point of this rant is that I do learn things from Reality Television, and I am going to work on not making Katie my whipping girl!

But only if she gets her butt up from the couch every once in awhile!


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Back in the Day!

Karissa started yesterday scanning in pictures from college, and I thought I would look through mine this morning, after I cleaned the kitchen of course, I mean, that's what my life has become after all. I didn't want to have to clean the kitchen AFTER looking at how much fun I had back in the day! That would be depressing. OH MY GOSH, I have laughed and smiled all morning. Can anyone tell me just how or why this picture exists? I have absolutely NO IDEA what was going on in it, but it sure made me laugh!

I am pretty sure hours after this picture was taken Al started prank calling our room and had my roommates and I SOOOOOOOOOOO SCARED we were calling security and what not. Then, I think he ran in our room with a faux knife and scared us half to death. BUT, it's a memory, and if it didn't happen that night, it happened a different night! He loved to scare us! I wonder what he is up to these days!

I dare you all to post your craziest picture on your blog. OR, if you can figure out how to leave it as a comment, I WOULD LOVE TO SEE IT!