Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Indiana Baskeball & Did I Season My Wok Correctly?

Tonight Chris and I went to the IU- Wisconsin basketball game. Wisconsin was rated #1 in the Big Ten, so it promised to be a great game. And, it was indeed a great game...pretty close the whole time and ending with a wonderful Hoosier victory.

This is my third season as a Hoosier Fan and it still surprises me to be one. Not only do I enjoy the games, I actually holler and yell and sing the IU song! There is something so wholesome about the ritual that just makes me happy, plain and simple. I can't explain it, but it is a fact. Tonight the game was especially good for me because it lifted me out of the doldrums that I have been lingering in for the past several days. How can you sit in a place with seventeen thousand happy cheering fans and not be infused with energy? (Or maybe I am in a better frame of mind because ovulation is over. Either way, I will take it.)

In other news, I tried my newly seasoned wok tonight to make Kung Pao Seitan (yes, we are still on the Vegan kick though I have to admit that I was craving a juicy medium rare burger earlier in the day and I will probably get one tomorrow.) Having never seasoned a wok before, I can't tell if I did it right. It seemed to be okay for the most part because the food wasn't sticking to the surface, but there was a fair amount of smoke production that I don't usually get when I doing stir-fries. I couldn't figure out what the cause of all the smoking was. Had I slopped too much oil on the outside of the wok while I was seasoning it ? Or, had I not or removed the protective coating thoroughly enough before I seasoned it ? (Chris kept asking me if I had followed the directions for the coating was annoying) Or, was the smoke simply from the burned cashews that I cooked just a wee bit too long? As far as the protective coating is concerned, I did follow the instructions and as directed, I boiled water for 7 minutes in the wok and followed that step with a vigorous scrubbing of the wok surface with an abrasive scrubby thing (you know, the same one I used on my car to disastrous effect last year) and soap. But, truth-be-told, I do worry that Chris's concerns are well founded and that the protective coating is still on there, under the oil, smoking away in some evil carcinogenic way, being inhaled by us. I can't decide whether to throw the wok out and start over with a new one or give it another chance. I'll keep you posted because I am determined to have an expertly seasoned wok, whatever it takes.

The food did taste pretty good, all things considered.

Well, Clarissa beckons. Loyal readers, I cannot recommend this book enough! Yes, it is long but it is such a great read!

Tuesday, January 30, 2007


Loyal readers, I am not going to lie to you.

Your BloomingtonGirl has been feeling both anxious and blue these past several days. I don't know when it hit me exactly, or what in particular is getting me down, but here I am.

Most probably - and I am sorry to make my male readers blush - it is hormonal. No, I am not having PMS. Rather, I am ovulating and I find that as I venture into my middle age (if I am lucky, that is) I get cranky when my ovaries pop out a little egg. I call it OBS...Ovulatory Bitchiness Syndrome.

In my opinion, OBS makes little sense in the reproductive scheme of things. It is certainly not intelligent design, if population of the Earth is the goal. Who wants to have sex with a bitchy woman who feels entirely unsexy ? (I can guess at one candidate who wouldn't, though I will not reveal his name here in case he is my husband. ) The potential fertilizing male probably figures it is less trouble in the scheme of things to let the egg die on the vine, so to speak, and wait until his mate is more receptive.

On the other hand, I didn't experience OBS when I was younger, so maybe this syndrome is Natures little gift of birth control to women of a certain age who would be less than joyous to be knocked up at this stage of life. In that light, it is a bit more understandable.

Whatever the reason for this dip in my usual sunny outlook, the result is that I become a Nihilist for a couple of days mid-cycle. Today, I slogged through my day, my spirit crushed - woe is me! - by the never ending task of keeping house. I feel like Sisyphus, putting away the Legos every night only to find them newly strewn about the next day. A boulder up a hill? Ha! Child's play.

I did find enthusiasm and meaning in the process of seasoning my new wok today although it did get a bit smoky in the kitchen. I have to admit that watching the beautiful deep patina develop gave me a thrill I hadn't felt since my hormones started messing with me this mid month. Pathetic? Of course, but I will take what I can get when I am in this frame of mind.

In other news, I made some Vegan brownies and I am sad to say that they were awful. I don't ever think I will give up butter and eggs. Especially if life has no real meaning, right?

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Afghani Food and Classical Guitar

Greetings Loyal Readers. I am cozily ensconced in bed, writing this on my spiffy new laptop that my husband so generously gave me for Christmas. (Have I mentioned lately that he is the finest man I know? I have been meaning to write an entire post about what a great guy he is, but I think it might embarrass him and be too smarmy. Anyway, back to this post...)

It's been a lovely Saturday. I got lots of organizing done (not many things make me happier) and then Chris and I went out to one of our favorite restaurants here (or anywhere for that matter), Samira. After that, we went to a classical guitar concert. It was a female duo and they were SO GOOD. They played as if they were one precise were they. Very relaxing and less than ten minutes from home. Hooray for Bloomington!

In other news, I forgot to mention that I did indeed decide to take my writing class this semester and I am SO glad that I made that decision. The group of women is - as always - quite diverse and interesting. I am working on a different kind of project this semester - a more serious piece of work rather than my usual wry take on the funny aspects of life. I find this more difficult, but I am going to try to stick with it. If nothing else, perhaps it will build my character. One can always use more of that, right?

In other other news, I think that Clarissa may be one of the best books I have read. I am approaching the half way mark and even though I sort of know the poor girl is headed toward a tragic end, I am still in suspense and hoping that things take a different turn. I know it is unlikely that many of you will rush right out and get a copy of the book to read, but I do recommend it highly.

More tomorrow perhaps. Good night.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Bake Sale !

Loyal readers, this is Jack goofing around on my computer with the built in trick camera. I came across this (and other photos) today and thought I would post it.

I don't know how it happened, but I got sucked into heading up Jack's school Teacher Appreciation Bake Sale this year. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate his (and all the other) teachers very much, but I am completely intimidated by this task. Last year they raised a whole bunch of money and the woman in charge of it is a completely organized dynamo. To compensate for my potential lack of militant organization, I compensated by sending out the initial e-mail plea to all school parents for baked goods in the form of a limerick. I adore limericks. It went as follows:

The time of the school year is here
To show staff and teachers so dear
How much we adore them
So let's really floor them
And show them that they're without peer.

So how do we do that, you say?
Sign up
Sign up below! Now! Today!
Make cake for the bake sale
Quick send me an e-mail
And we will be quite on our way!

The proceeds earned will be spent
For gifts that will show the extent
Of how much we revere
Our teachers so dear
So help us with this great event!

Not bad, eh? I've already gotten several responses and I expect to get many more. If I can't raise as much money as last year, and/or if the three-day event doesn't run as smoothly as last year, at least I can do it in style. After all, style can be everything.

In other news, Jack and I spent two hours at the allergist office today getting him re-tested for peanut, pecan and walnut allergies and evaluated for asthma. The really great news is that he appears to have outgrown pecan and walnut allergies making him non-allergic to tree nuts. That opens up a world of foods that he can now eat that he couldn't before. (We celebrated by having Pesto for dinner.) The expected but not so great news is that his skin test for peanut VERY clearly showed that Jack's peanut allergy is alive and kicking. Oh well. Can't have everything.

He doesn't appear to have asthma, and that is a good thing.

In other other news, I made incredibly good chocolate chip cookies last night. Visit my other blog that I share with Dick, the "red-necked Martha Stewart" for the recipe. (Really Great Recipes). You won't be disappointed.

Well, Loyal Ones, I am off to read more of the tragic Clarissa.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Nothing Much To Say...But That Never Stops Your BloomingtonGirl

This is a picture of my wonderful husband Chris and me in our kitchen a month or so back. I am wearing an apron given to me by my Conn. friend Michelle. It was my first full apron and now, I can't cook without one, because, Loyal Readers, I am just too messy. My clothes would surely be ruined if I cooked sans protection. I have an apron that says "ISIT5YET?" on the front and another with a picture of TinkerBell on it that says "Pastry Pixie". One of my favorites is a vintage ruffley type that always makes me feel dressed up while toiling away over the range.

And, speaking of cooking, I have been tearing it up lately! This Vegan kick has been amazingly delicious. I know that it is hard to imagine how Vegan meals could be anything but bland, but I am here to tell you that I am going to get fat on this stuff because it tastes so WONDERFUL! Tonight I made a Vegan Paella - if there is such a thing - that was out of this world. Friday night's delectable meal was Tempeh Bourguignonne. Tomorrow, I am making a lasagna with a mushroom/tofu filling that I whipped up yesterday. All I can say is YUM, loyal readers. Don't worry, though. We are far from being authentic Vegans or even Vegetarians. My wonderful husband (whose idea it was to go meatless) ordered a steak the other night when we went out. So there.

In other news, I have been flip-flopping about going back to my writing group this semester. The class begins tomorrow and I actually withdrew a couple of days ago. But, tonight, I was having second thoughts. I e-mailed the facilitator and told her that I was reconsidering my decision and asked if my space had been given to someone else. I can't stand people who do this and here I am...doing this very thing. What can I say? I am a pain in the ass sometimes.

In other other news, I think that we are rid of our pestilence, though Jack continues to scratch like a dog with fleas. According to the literature, itchiness can remain for a week or so after the mites have been killed, so I am going to give it a couple more days before I drag him to the pediatrician for a look. I've been worried that I had not been able to effectively clean all five million of Jack's Lego pieces and that they were reinfecting him. But, I was reassured tonight when I read that in Scabies transmission, "Fomites" are not of importance. I had to look up the word, but I am sure that my loyal readers know that a Fomite is any inanimate object or any substance capable of absorbing, retaining, and transporting contagious or infectious organisms (from germs to parasites) from one individual to another. It was a relief to be allowed to stop worrying about those damned Fomites! (PS...Isn't that a great word, Fomite? I can't wait to use it in conversation...)

But, the Fomite thing does beg the question...Where the hell did I get this pestilence in the first place??? It would be interesting to report that I contracted the pestilence from some sort of illicit person to person activity with a stranger, but there are two things that don't work with this story. First, I have had no illicit activity with any stranger in years, loyal readers, being the devoted and chaste wife that you know your BloomingtonGirl to be. Second, if I did have illicit activity, it would have had to have been with my left ankle. And, truth-be-told, Loyal Readers, I can't think of anything illicit I feel like doing with either of my ankles, as sexy as they happen to be.

Well, that is enough of my ramblings for tonight. My brain is obviously fried from spending most of the day managing a play date for three six-year olds.

I am now off to Clarissa, the pages of which contain the most dreadful scoundrel I have ever read about in any novel.

Monday, January 15, 2007

I can't even think of what to call this one...

I'm not going to lie, loyal readers. When I posted photos of my legs in fancy/fun stockings, I got a some strong reactions. There was an emphatic "Mid-life Crisis!" vote, among other similar, though milder sentiments. But, there were votes in the decidedly opposite direction, including a few from gentlemen whose imaginations appear to be stirred by stockings in general.

Well, you can imagine that your innocent and chaste minded BloomingtonGirl has felt rather worried about her male readers who might have had their passions inflamed by the stocking discussion and the accompanying unretouched - some might say shocking - photos posted right here on this very blog. I began to think about what I could write that might cool such untoward thoughts. Alas, I was in a muddle. I couldn't think of anything.

But, then, fortune smiled on me in the way she often does, by bringing to me just the right little thing for my purposes. Something that is sure to cool even the hottest desire in any person, male or female.

Note if you will loyal readers, the drawing above. This is a magnified-view illustration of none other than the microscopic mite, Scarcoptes scabei. You might be wondering why such an illustration is gracing this post. Well, wonder no more. This disgusting creature is the parasite that causes Scabies and your BloomingtonGirl has just that...SCABIES!!!!!!! (I will pause here while you collect yourself after your horrific shock.)

For those of you who don't know what Scabies is, I'll bring you up to speed. It is a skin condition caused by the parasitic mite shown above. The mite burrows under your skin and lays eggs. They hatch and the cycle begins again. The burrows look like raised red lines on your skin. They itch (though the ones on my arms did not itch very much at all) and then scab over.

It all started a couple of weeks ago (or more) when I noticed an itchy patch on the front of my ankle that looked like a razor burn. I was puzzled by it but thought little of it, as I am not a medical alarmist. (To wit - some of you may remember that I waited until my son was quite dehydrated from his pneumonia before I brought him to see the doctor, who promptly hospitalized him...) So, I ignored what seemed to me to be a minor skin irritation. Then, the other day, I went swimming at the Y. While in the shower after my swim, I noticed that I had a couple of the same type of linear raised scabbed bumps on my right arm. I became a bit alarmed.

I began to wonder if I had Scabies, sort of in jest at first, because I couldn't imagine really that I could have such a wretched condition. After all, only people with poor personal hygiene back in grade school got that! I had never seen it, but I began to think that it was what I surely had.

I went home and looked it up on the Internet. A word of caution, loyal readers...if you don't have a strong stomach, never go on the ADA (American Dermatological Association or something like that) to look at photos of a skin condition you fear you might have. I don't know where they get these poor unfortunates but they always have shots of the absolute worst, most disgusting cases of whatever it is, run amok. Scabies was no exception. Fortunately, I was able to find a couple of photos of milder cases and was able to determine that I indeed had the dreaded parasite.

This morning, I called my doctor and after some discussion, she agreed that if I believed that I had Scabies and Chris thought so, too, she would call in a prescription for the human equivalent of a doggie flea dip for me. I read up on the treatment, which is basically a head to toe application of what is essentially a pesticide cream. I lost my nerve a bit...suppose I was wrong? Suppose I didn't have Scabies? Was it really necessary to apply this poison to my person?

So, I called my good friend, "L", who is also a Veterinarian. After she stopped laughing about my problem, which she quaintly labelled "The Mange", she agreed to help me diagnose my pestilence. I drove over to her house with a pair of surgical gloves and my sharpest paring knife. L donned the gloves and proceeded to scrape my skin with my knife and we looked at the scrapings under the microscope. It was like a weird "I Love Lucy" episode. We looked and looked at our makeshift slide under the scope and then, SUCCESS! we saw an egg. It matched the photo in the book exactly, so I was satisfied in my diagnosis. Off I went to the pharmacy to pick up my anti-Scabies lotion.

Hours later, doused in the lotion, I am confident that it is working and I will soon be rid of the unwelcome guests on my person. I am relieved to report that the cream was not unpleasant, not stinky, not irritating. I can wash it off in about eight hours, just in time to take Jack to school.

The question remains, though, How did this happen?? Where did your very clean and attentive to her personal hygeine BloomingtonGirl contract such a questionable communicable disease?

Tune in tomorrow when I explore that very question. Until then, I remain

Loyally yours,

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Culture Fest

This is a picture of Jack in his little costume at Culture Fest, his Montessori classroom's celebration of Europe. He is posing in front of a "quilt" he helped make. He and the other kindergarten kids sang some European folk songs and did a Greek dance. It was so incredibly cute! The kids were so proud. Afterward, we had a "pitch-in" dinner (for you East coast folks, that's Midwestern for "pot luck") of European dishes. It was surprisingly very good.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Future Shock

A robot vacuumed my kitchen tonight. I might just be a convert to this mode of doing things, loyal readers. More tomorrow.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Lacto-Ovo Vegan, Hosiery Fashion Fun & Wrong Impressions

I can't believe it is Thursday already! My, how this week has flown.

I just posted a new recipe to my recipe blog for Tempeh Paprikash. I encourage all of you loyal readers with any sense of adventure at all to try this delectable dish. (ReallyGreatRecipes). I have decided that (this week, anyway), I am going to consider myself to be a Lacto-Ovo Vegan. I know that it is like a Meat Eating Vegetarian, but I simply like the ring of it.

This evening for dinner, I made Ethiopian Seitan (pronounced SAY-Tan, though I always get it wrong and call it Satan and I am not sure what that says about your BloomingtonGirl.) It was delicious. I am getting SUCH a kick of our making these new vegan/vegetarian dishes. AS one of my most favorite girlfriends here in Bloomington pointed out to me the other day, your BloomingtonGirl doesn't do anything by halves. So, here I am, plunging all the way into the Vegan recipe experience. Fun!Fun!Fun! (or perhaps Mania!Mania!Mania!)

You will be relieved to know that your BloomingtonGirl is not only working hard to make her tummy happy with delicious vegan treats, she is dressing up her legs as well. Below are photos of my two latest gam fashions. Is it a mid-life crisis or just plain fashion fun? I'll let you be the judge. I invite you to cast your vote in the comment section. (Val, don't trouble yourself with voting...I can confidently put you down for a mid-life crisis vote.) I wore the floral tights on the weekend and the blue tights under the fishnets today. The tights/fishnet combo made my little legs feel so very happy. And in this world of suffering and worry, happy legs can go a long way.
In other news, I finally took down the ornaments from the Christmas Tree and put away the other holiday decorations. It is as late as I can ever remember doing this. I was just lazy about it this year.

In other other news, I was introduced today to a person whom I have seen around over and over again - our kids are in the same karate class and we have a mutual friend. I had an expectation of how this person would be based on my observations of him at a distance. And, I must report that I was completely wrong! I suspected that I wouldn't like him but I could tell based on our brief interaction today that I would like him very much! (I already know his wife a little bit and like her.) I love when I am wrong about people in this way for two reasons. First, it opens up a whole new world I didn't think was available in the form of a new person to like AND it reminds me - yet again- that impressions can be very misleading. (On the other hand, being wrong in the reverse can be very unpleasant.) The take home lesson for me is to tread lightly and keep an open mind.

Clarissa beckons, loyal readers. I must away.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The Battery Operated Device that is Saving My Marriage in the Bedroom

This is a photo of my wonderful new little friend. No, you naughty minded loyal isn't what you think. My newest little favorite device of the moment is The Book Owl. It is a wonderful little book light that clips on to Clarissa and illuminates this compelling story. I almost always want to stay up a bit longer than my husband to read but my light keeps him awake. Book Owl to the rescue!

Below, you can see it working in all of its luminous glory. And it only cost six bucks to boot. Who knew a cheap little hand held device could yield such harmony in the marital bed? It will be interesting to see whether the batteries need to be replaced before I finish Clarissa. I have approximately 900 pages to go. It may just become one of my favorite books ever, believe it or not.

Today, I ordered another device that I am hoping I will like just as much as my beloved Book Owl. I ordered a Roomba. For those of you who haven't heard of the Roomba, it is a robotic vacuum cleaner.
I believe that I should disclose right here and now that I used to scoff at the Roomba, sneering at the lazy people who would purchase such a seeming piece of junk. After all, I would never have considered purchasing a robot to do my vacuuming...I have always enjoyed that task. Well, in the past, I always enjoyed it. But lately, I find that I am doing far too much vacuuming to keep up the the accelerated shedding that our dog has started to do. I was prompted to consider the Roomba by an article in Scientific American by Bill Gates predicting a rise in the use of home robots. Okay, I admit I didn't read the article...I only read the headline. After all, I had to work my way through Vogue and Vanity Fair and couldn't quite make it to Scientific American, no matter how compelling it might have seemed to me. But that isn't important to my story.

I did some research on the Roomba and found out that they have a 30 day no questions asked money back trial so I decided to try one. It was shipped out today and I anxiously await its arrival. I will certainly be posting my evaluation of the little robot right here on this very site. Below is a picture of the darling model I ordered. Isn't he a cutie? Jack and I decided to name it HairBot because its main job is to pick up dog hair. Has a nice ring to it, doesn't it? If you are interested - and of course you are - you can go to the website and watch a video of the Roomba in action. (Roomba). Just click on the "Watch Roomba in Action" link on the right side of the screen and away you go!

Well, loyal readers, I must tuck myself into bed with my little Book Owl and read the tragic story of Clarissa.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Cooking, Friendship and Clarissa

I have been obsessed with cooking lately and it has been a joy. Yesterday, I made a chickpea and spinach curry that was quite nice. This morning, I put together a "torta di risotto" that really rocked. For your cooking and eating delight, I've included the recipe on the recipe blog I share with my wonderful childhood friend, Dick, A.K.A. The Redneck Martha Stewart. (Torta di Risotto Recipe) The torta is great because not only is it delicious, it can be made ahead (even two days!!!). I LOVE that in a recipe. Make won't regret it.

In other news, I have been thinking about friendship lately, having recently heard a story of two-facedness and betrayal. What is a friend? What is loyalty? How far should one take it? What is reasonable to expect from a friend? ( I have no answers to these questions, loyal readers. After all, I am mere BloomingtonGirl, not Oprah or Dr. Phil.)

My parents sometimes said that if you could count your real friends on one hand, you were lucky. Well, I feel very lucky in the friend department, having long time friends I can trust and with whom I have a deep history and connection. I would be remiss if I did not mention new friends, too. A bonus of moving in mid-life to a completely foreign place is the making of new friends and over time, having those friendships deepen. And what is also cool is that while you are learning about a new friend and his/her experiences, you are reflected back (by that friend) to yourself in a new way, so you learn something new about yourself in the process. I hope that makes sense. It is a good thing, as my girl Martha would say. (Hey, anyone who can go to prison and come out on top as she did gets my vote.)

Now, Clarissa. What a compelling novel! What I love about this (and other novels written long ago) is how timeless human behaviour is. That there is nothing new under the sun rings more and more true to me, the older I get. In this right now culture of new, new, new we all think that our experiences are just, new, new. We are fooled, I think. Clarissa is such a tragic tale that I dread to read on for what I fear will happen to this poor woman...and at the same time, I can't wait to see what does.

Off to wash my face and try out my new face mask that promises to firm up aging skin (!) and to bed to read my book. I know that the book will be satisfying...I'll let you know about the facial mask.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Can't upload photos!

Loyal readers, I've been trying to upload a selection of various photos for your viewing enjoyment, but alas, Blogger keeps saying that they are sorry but they cannot do it at the current time. I don't know what the problem is, but at some point I will figure it out.

I have not felt much like writing lately and I think that it is just due to having Jack home on vacation and not in school. My brain is tired out at the end of the day - when I would normally write - not tired out from thinking. No, it is tired out from hearing the theme to the Harry Potter and Star Wars Movies sung over and over again at a high volume while Jack puts the respective Lego kits together. Throw in the much too frequent "MOM-MAY! I NEED HELP FINDING A LEGO PIECE!" and by eight PM, I am toast. I think that for the most part, I am a decent Mom and I hold the belief that Jack will be fine despite my best efforts, but there are days when I wonder at my ability to parent. I look forward to tomorrow when Jack begins school again and I won't have to wonder quite so often during the course of a day.

This evening, I had the neighborhood couples over for dinner to welcome a new family to our little neighborhood. We know them well - it's one of my husband's partners and his family, so it was comfortable and casual. I made three baked pasta dishes. The favorite was (no surprise) my four cheese pasta, the recipe for which can be found on my recipe blog (Four Cheese Baked Bow Ties). It is a great casual dinner party entree because it can be made early in the day and baked when the guests arrive. YUM.

Last night, I made a Vegan Tempeh Paprikash for Chris and me and I have to say that it was GREAT. It is true - you don't have to remind me - that one of my slogans has been "Nobody Likes a Vegan". So, you may be shocked at what I am about to disclose to you right here in this very blog. I actually purchased a Vegan cookbook last week and have already made three things from it. And, each dish was excellent. Who knew? I made a Vegan Thai Green Curry, Carrot Raisin Muffins and the aforementioned Tempeh dish. Before I purchased the cookbook, I made Kung Pao Seitan and I think that was what inspired me to get the cookbook. I am going to purchase a second (much recommended one) tomorrow. The one I own is called Vegan with a Vengeance and the one to be purchased is The Voluptuous Vegan. The links will take you the Amazon. I imagine you are not interested, but just in case...

You are probably wondering how I got on this wacky kick. If I had my way, I would have a steak and salad most nights for dinner. So, I have to say that I am not a little surprised at this new turn of events in the McGary kitchen. A couple of weeks back, I served a simple (and delicious, I might add) baked a chicken for dinner. I made it the same way I always do. The next day, my husband said, " Honey, I think that I am going to stop eating meat for awhile. The chicken sort of grossed me out for some reason. " Being the completely accommodating wife that I am, I have pretty much stopped cooking meat since then. And, being the little overachiever that I (sometimes) am, I couldn't just cook the same old recipes from my time worn treasure The Moosewood Cookbook. I wanted to experiment with ingredients I hadn't used so much before like seitan and tempeh. A Vegan cookbook seemed like the way to go. I consulted the very hip Vegan guy who works at our local food co-op and he recommended the two books above.

I have no intention of becoming a strict Vegetarian, much less a Vegan. I just look at this as a kick I am on, much like my current mild obsession with patterned stockings and over the knee socks to go with my latest boot purchases. (One of my latest favorite little web stores is SockDreams. They have some really fun stuff.)

Well, I am off to read Clarissa. It is getting SO good. I am past page 500 (!!) and it is getting to be quite the page turner, let me tell you. Besides enjoying the story, I feel good about reading such a "weighty" book right now because I have been feeling like a sort of frivolous girly-girl lately and reading this big classic novel is helping prop up my lately crumbling smart-girl self image. It's all in my head, of course...but what isn't?

Bye for now, loyal readers!

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Who thought of a two-week vacation for kids?

Monday can't come soon enough, loyal readers. I love my kid but, frankly, if I have to hear MOM_MAY! one more time today, I might just have a nervous breakdown. Thank goodness for his early bedtime. It is delightful to have my thoughts to myself.

I haven't been blogging much because by the time eight 'o clock rolls around and Jack is in bed, my brain is mush. Next week, I fully expect to be back into the swing of my life.

I was going to upload some pictures of my Baumkuchen making process but for some reason, Blogger isn't letting me upload any pictures tonight. I know it is a great disappointment for my readers, but hang in there because I will try to post them tomorrow.

I cannot think of another thing to write, so I will wait until I can.

Good night, loyal readers.