Thursday, December 22, 2011

Pretentious Young Foodie

One of the few advantages of Facebook is that you get to reconnect with friends from everywhere.  Some you reconnect with just out of morbid curiosity, some because you were actually friends with back in the day.  Granted, with FB you have to sift through a lot of crap "working out again--feels so good", "sick again--poor me", "my kid is the best because they brought home all C's", but every now and then you get a genuine nugget of absolute goodness.

I have "friended" an old friend who attended the now closed Warren Academy with me from kindergarten until 7th grade.  WA was a Christian school.  And it was strict.  Extremely strict.  Tape kids to their desks.  Put their desks in the janitor's closet for solitary confinement.  Prayer circles for disobedient kids, strict.  We were like little trained monkeys.  Only with far less bananas.  Or fun.

Jason was so kind as to share this gem his mother unearthed with FB yesterday:
Yes, that says "Holiday Cooking".  Surprising for a Christian school and obviously before the "Happy Holidays" vs. "Merry Christmas" war.

WA loved to make us perform like the aforementioned monkeys and were always pimping us out to do things like this cookbook.  I'm sure we had our marching orders to bring in recipes and write neatly on the old school mimeograph paper (the predecessor of the copier, kiddos).   Jason had mentioned several people who were contributed recipes and I was one of them (I have absolutely no recollection of this, as I have repressed the majority of my memories from that gulag).  I wondered what I had added and imagine my sheer delight to click on his next pic to see MY recipe!!

Even back in 2nd grade (or so I'm guessing, because it's written in cursive and we didn't learn that until 2nd grade), I was a pretentious little foodie.  And cheesecake addict.  J pointed out that I misspelled cracker.  And graham.  But hey, mimeograph paper didn't have spell check.  Yes, kiddos.  This was before computers.  And internet.  Possibly even before fire--not sure, repressed memories and all that.  I guess this was a precursor to the live morning tv segments I would do 30 years later.  Too bad I didn't have this recipe then, or else I could have made it live on air.

I am so grateful that he shared this with the FB masses.  It is so nice to look back on the sweet kid I used to be.  Before I turned into the haggard and jaded Burdie of today.

Now I'm craving cheesecake.

The Worst (Laziest) Parents Ever

Lest we get all high and mighty and think that just because the Sound & Fury get decent grades, have no oozing sores and haven't yet reported us to CPS, we have something that jars us back to reality and reminds us that we pretty much stink at parenting.  We learned that we might be the worst (or laziest) parents on the block.

Our voice mail at the house is via the phone--no blinking light on an answering machine.  That's soooo 1985.  We're all high tech and what not (yet, we still have a landline--go figure).  Here's where the lazy comes in.  Usually the phone with the display of "New Voice Mail", is on the kitchen counter, right where we stop to close the side door and hang up our keys.  That phone has been MIA somewhere in the house for a week.  Granted, there is a little "locate" button that if I were to push, the phone would beep.  I just wasn't feeling playing Marco Polo with a phone, so I never tried.  Neither did anybody else.  Honestly, the only phone calls we get on the landline anymore are from our pharmacy reminding us of prescriptions that have been left there for a week or connect eds from the PTSA at school, I don't ever think to answer, much less check messages.  I figure that if people truly want (need) me, they will call my cell phone.  Even my 85 year old grandmother has a cell and calls my cell (still waiting on her to learn to text though).

I happened to notice that the phone in the living room said "New Voice Mail" yesterday.  Thinking I had just missed the PTSA announcement about hoodie delivery, I checked.  5 messages.  Not just missed calls, but actual messages.  Most of them were from the pharmacy and school, but not the last one.  Nope.  The last one was from Peytie's new soccer coach.  And it was a week old.  And he was saying that Peytie had practice/scrimmage Sunday.  As in this past Sunday.  As in we missed it.  Completely.  So much for starting off on the right foot with a new team.  Our kid is going to be water jockey for the rest of the season.  I did what any good wife would do--I made J call the coach.  I figure J is from 'round here, so he might know the guy and can laugh it off.  I would just be the crazy mom who was too lazy to check her messages.

I still don't know where the other phone is.  Peytie is practicing her water fetching skills as we speak.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Getting Crafty With It

I found myself faced with the first Christmas since I'd sold the shop and ergo, no idea of what to get the Sound & the Fury's teachers.  It was so easy to tell the girls to go fix boxes (within reason) for their teachers.  Usually the teachers got boxes full of solids or peanut butter cups (the Gruesome Twosome tend to fix things that they like), but hey, at least the teachers were getting something that the kids had put some thought into.

Since I no longer am cooking 15 hours a day (like I did at the shop), I REFUSE to cook anything for teachers in any way, shape or form.  I'm on strike.  Consider me Norma Rae of my kitchen.  I may have even stood on the table and ask J to unionize the workers of this house, but I digress.  Enter my best friend, Mary Margaret, has gotten me hooked on (read, addicted) to Pinterest.  Now that I'm unemployed at leisure, I have plenty of time to peruse the various "pins" out there.  Granted, I am the LEAST crafty person you will ever encounter so I usually look at the crafting pins much like I'd window shop at Tiffany's--nice to look out but way out of my league..  Martha Stewart will probably sue me if I mentioned her in this un-craft blog.   That's how bad I am.

However, I saw a pin to turn ordinary washers into Christmas ornaments--personalized at that.  J & I took off to Home Depot and befuddled everybody working there when we started holding washers up against each other, just for looks (because we all know that's how plumbers pick their washers out, right?  if they look darling against each other).

A few taps with some imprinting die (thanks again to my Norm Abram-esque father in law), some co-ordinating ribbon and WHA-POW!  Teacher gifts!

Not too shabby, eh?  Especially for a non crafter!  Now to find something to make from Popsicle sticks and twine!!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

The Santaland Diaries

As difficult as this may be to believe, I actually had my act so together that I purchased a Christmas gift back this summer.  When I mentioned to my best friend, Mary Margaret, that Triad Stage was offering David Sedaris' The Santaland Diaries, she said she REALLY wanted to go.  Even though I am still holding a grudge against her for not taking me to see David Sedaris in Charlotte three years ago (hello???  I own some FABULOUS shoes and would have fit in with that crowd nicely thankyouverymuch!!), I had the lightbulb moment where I decided to get her tickets for her Christmas present.  Granted, since we think a lot alike, I had to tell her in advance what I was doing, lest we run into a Gift of the Magi scenario.

We began our evening at Opa! Greek restaurant, which is about half a block away from Triad Stage.  J & I cannot do anything downtown Greensboro without hitting Opa! Heck, I even want to have some right now.  At 9am in the morning!  It's that good.  Turns out Thursday nights are half price wine bottle nights there.  A very Merry Christmas indeed!

Two girls.  Three glasses.  I don't know either.  I wasn't a math major.

When in Rome do as the Romans.  And don't ignore the Greeks either.

Done with dinner, we walked back over to Triad Stage.  Turns out, the play was held upstairs in the Upstage Caberet, to which I'd never been.  Upstage Caberet is actually a teeny, tiny little hole in the wall room, but they call it a "caberet" to give it that cozy feeling.  The ticket taker told us that it was sold out & we may have to make new friends and sit at a table with people we didn't know.  Mary Margaret was having none of that & made a beeline for a two top table at the back of the place.  Little did we know that later on in the play, the Elf walked to our little corner and deemed it the Vomitorium.  No direct reflection on us, but  rather because his lines called for him to say it in reference to a long line waiting to see Santa at Macy's.  Still, MM & I got a big laugh about sitting in the Vomitorium, which may be our new catch phrase when we find ourselves in a less than desirable situation (PTA meetings, for example).
Enormous powers.  Teeny, tiny living space.  Yes, we are at the back.  Yes, the white chair was the stage.

We entertain ourselves so easily, we don't need a play.  These were little cards to decorate to put on their Christmas tree.
The play was great.  Only one actor.  For the whole hour and a half.  He didn't miss any lines (at least to our knowledge).  I can't even remember my name the majority of the time and this guy remembered an hour and a half worth of lines!

With the evening over at 9pm, we had that "not ready to go home" feeling so we ventured over to The Green Bean Coffee House.  I love the Green Bean, but I always feel I am not cool enough to hang out there--it's uber cool & I'm an uber nerd.  Since we stood out like sore thumbs there (I was the only one in the whole room without a tattoo--I don't mean in the biker sense of tattoo, I mean the cool, hip crowd kinda tattoo), we drank our coffee.  And headed home.
Coffee love.

Onwards and upwards to see what Mary Margaret & I can get into next!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Christmas Recital

People who know me know my penchant for red lips and fake eyelashes.  What they don't realize is that I have no other choice.  I have no say in the matter.  It is as much a part of me as my coffee addiction.  See, this particular addiction is well rooted in my personal history.  For years I took dance.  Lived danced.  Breathed dance.  I even toured with US & Canada with a dance troupe when I was 17, where the rule of daily life was full stage makeup (my gateway to the red lipstick drug--Revlon Really Red) and hair pulled up in a French braid.  Of course, it was no question that the Sound & the Fury would take dance.

The three of us have been enrolled in dance at Magic Feet Dance Company for two years (after switching from another local studio--MFDC excels in tap & I love tap).  Last year I was in the adult clogging class, which was fun but not as challenging as I wanted, so I decided to switch over to the advanced jazz & tap classes.  The only problem?  The advanced classes are teenage classes.  I am a teenager--twice over.  I am old enough to be their mother older sister.  As much as I enjoy the classes (and by enjoy, I mean feel like I'm going to have a major cardiac infarction), I was very hesitant to be in the recital.

At any rate, the costumes were purchased and I reluctantly went.  I almost reconsidered when I saw how many people I knew from the audience.  After all, it's one thing to make a fool of myself in front of the handful of teeny boppers, but to make a fool of myself in front of my peers?  Sober, at that! YIKES!

The Sound & Fury got all dolled up too.

The seeds for her red lipstick addiction have been planted.

Lulu is such my kid--although she opted out of the red lips, she took a book to read between dancing.
She didn't want to have her pic taken, so she threw the book up.  Silly girl--still going on the blog.

I went back in time 18 years--I was in the youngsters changing room, instead of the old lady changing room from last year.  I liked being with the girls, because I got to snap some behind the scenes pics and be sure they kept all their junk accouterments together.  
Too bad that the word "child" was cut off in front of "name".  
I got through it.  My babysitter even said she didn't notice me in the first dance because I blended in with the teenagers.  Yes, she wears glasses, but I'll take it!

I did manage to sneak one pic in.
Now I just have to hope that none of my dancing ends up on youtube.  Please, Santa can you see to that?  I've been a relatively good girl this year!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Page Pirates--NC 4AA State Champs!

For 17 years, I have been a Friday night lights football widow.  I have gone to rehearsal dinners by myself, Trick or Treated as the only parent,  Thanksgiving'ed without him and even had to celebrate Lulu's 2nd birthday sans J.  Finally my years of solitude paid off.  He was on the sidelines of a very, very good team.  After beating the Mallard Creek Mavericks last Friday (and the 10 hour round trip J & I made for him to get to the game), the Page Pirates earned a berth in the State Championship Final.  Too big for a measly ole high school stadium, the main event was held at Wake Forest University's football field.  I was all too familiar with that field, after having spent the month of August working the press room at the Winston Salem Open (which just happened to be located in Bridger Field House).

Lulu & I dressed up in J's Page apparel (which gave a nice hobo-esque look to our appearance, as his clothes hung down to our knees--the NC version of a burqua, shrouding us completely in shapeless red and black) and headed to the big game.
J in action, recording the play Coach G. is going to run.
It was nerve wracking, in that I wanted those boys to win so badly.  They had been undefeated all year and had knocked off teams they shouldn't have beaten to get to this point.  Thankfully I merely had the jitters, unlike the head coach's wife who was physically ill with nerves.  I heard that Scotty McCreary was in the crowd for the other team (oops--my bad.  I am so out of touch that I didn't know he was still a student) but then again, I couldn't pick him out of a lineup.

The game was a good one.  I went to the bathroom and Garner scored their first touchdown.  That taught me to stay in my seat.  Page never relinquished the lead, but I was biting my nails until the final minute of the game.  In the end, Coach Kevin Gillespie & his Page Pirates brought home the championship, 35-21.

Trust me.  The score is 35-21.  Even with Picnik I couldn't make it legible.
The players got to douse Coach G with water (boring I know, but with Wake being fancy and all with their artificial turf, crazy things like Gatorade just aren't allowed).  There was a brief (and I mean brief) awards ceremony in which the wives of the coaches could not go out on the field.  Yes.  For 17 years of putting up with stat papers all around my house, that's what I get.  Nothing.  No reveling for me.
Good game!  Good game!  Good game!

Lulu & I celebrated anyhow.  We went to Ruby Tuesday's and ordered dessert.  Chocolate lava cake with vanilla ice cream and strawberry sauce.  You know, as close as we could get to Page red and black.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Spanky's Hall of Fame

Over the Thanksgiving break, J managed to put away more than just turkey--he sealed his entry into Spanky's Hall of Fame by eating his 5th lifetime Mad Viking.  Since this was no mere feat (personally I can't even finish the $1 double cheeseburger at McD's, much less have 1 Viking, much less have 5 Vikings), I figured that a mere blog post wouldn't do his success justice.  Therefore, much like a great athlete holds a press conference (or like Adam Richman fields questions at the end of Man Vs. Food), I decided to give him his own little press conference.  Here goes:


Q: First of all, congratulations on achieving your Hall of Fame induction today.  When you started the Viking quest in 2009, did you ever imagine you would be HOF material?

A:  I never had aspirations of being in Spanky’s HOF.  In fact it took me 6 years to actually try to eat a Mad Viking.  It seemed like a formable task.
Thus begins the quest.

Q: What type of training did you do leading up to today?  Any special dietary requirements? 

A:  The morning of the Mad Viking #5, I ate a light breakfast consisting of 1 egg and a few pieces of bacon.  I skipped all carbs that morning.

Q:  What’s your favorite color?  Why?
A:  Duke blue.  No explanation necessary.

Q:  If you could have had a theme song playing as you entered Spanky’s today, what would it have been?
A:  Probably “Gonna Fly Now” better known as “Theme from Rocky” by Bill Conti.  34 years later that song still motivates and inspires.

Q:  What advice can you offer to someone who is hoping to achieve HOF entry?  What about to a first time eater?
A:  The trick is to take the top two patties off and eat them with a fork and knife.  
Illustration #1.  Proper removal of two patties to be consumed with a knife and fork.

Finish by eating the other two with the bun and toppings.  
Yes, that is just two patties.
The absolute key is to eat it FAST.  That way you finish it before your stomach figures out what you are trying to do and revolts on you.  It also helps to have someone time you.  It is great incentive to improve your time splits.  Our 11 year old daughter happily did that.
Why, yes, she did.  Notice he dropped 4 minutes from Viking #4?

Q:  I noticed you opted for unsweetened tea.  What role did that play in the success?

A:  In past Mad Viking undertakings I always drank diet Pepsi.  I decided today to forgo the carbonation and I felt the sugar in sweet tea might wreak havoc.  It was a conservative approach where I didn’t want any outside influences to affect me.  A 2 lb burger deserves that kind of respect.
The unsweetened tea led to the signing of the Hall Of Fame list.

Q:  If you were a tree, what kind would you be? Why?
A:   It is not a tree, but close enough.  I’d be a Venus Fly Trap.  The ultimate meat eater.

Q:  What are your next goals as they pertain to Vikings?  What about for other monster works of food?
A:  I just want to slowly inch up the standings and provide my family some entertainment by watching me eat.  OBX Taco Bar has a 4lb taco salad that looks interesting.  Not sure about all of that sour cream though.  Ugh.

Q:  How will this affect your Thanksgiving dinner plans?  More importantly, how will this impact dinner plans for taking me out to eat tonight?
A:  I rebound quickly.  No worries about Thanksgiving.  Ma’s cooking will be in good hands.  My system handled Viking #5 so well that dinner tonight will be a joy.  Oysters on the half shell at Awful Arthur’s is calling my name.

To the victor goes the bumper sticker!


To make the moment even more special, Spanky gave J a shout out on his Facebook page today.

Yup.  Spanky's meat just can't be beat.