Saturday, January 19, 2008

Greetings on a Saturday Night

Greetings Loyal Readers. I am enjoying a somewhat quiet moment after a non-stop day of playing with Jack. Chris is working and Jack is having his weekly "TV Dinner". It is usually on Friday nights, but last night he opted to eat with a babysitter instead (while his lucky parents at the new Farm Bloomington, more on that later). Every Friday, I allow Jack to have a Kids Cuisine Frozen Dinner while watching TV. I do realize that it is practically child abuse in some circles to allow one's offspring to eat such toxic waste while experiencing the very low culture that TV (in this case Sponge Bob & Dexter's Lab) offers today's children. But, I think that it is time we relax these better-mom-than-you-are standards. They exhaust me. My mother raised me on canned vegetables, Hawaiian Punch, bologna, white bread and Lucky Charms and I'm okay. I wouldn't feed Jack a steady diet of prepared toxic waste type food, but once and awhile, I think it's okay. Go ahead, militant mommies. Send social services over.

In other news, I have a new addiction. Project Runway. Katie turned me on to it when I saw her last and I am completely hooked. I am fascinated by how a great looking garment can be created out of odd materials (i.e. candy wrappers) in a limited period of time (1-2 days). I almost jumped on the fashion designer bandwagon and bought a sewing machine, but then I remembered that I have no idea how to sew a garment. I thought about taking sewing lessons, but I had to face the truth about myself. I have no patience for exact work. Anything I made would probably have shoddy workmanship. Take, for example, the sweater I began about ten years ago. I finished each piece approximately nine years ago. The pieces (back, front sleeves) have been stuffed into a bag in a closet since then. I brought them out a week ago. Since then, I have attached one arm and this alone tried my patience. I had better pay attention to my nature.

In other other news, I am laying low lately (though wouldn't it be more grammatically correct to say "lying" low?), staying home while Jack is at school. Last month, and for the past several months, I have been running around doing volunteer work and for some reason, I am feeling lately that I need to just stay home and take care of things here. I've really enjoyed staying in, though I do feel a bit guilty about not being quite so productive, whatever that means. I am at that point in my life at which I don't feel that I need to prove myself constantly. It's nice.

Well, that's all from this boring little place. Time to put the little man to bed and turn on Project Runway. It's so nice to be comfortable with being a shallow fashion lover.

Bye for now, Loyal Readers.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Amelia Bedelia is a Big Fat Phony

Yeah, you heard me. She's a big fat phony. I used to just be annoyed by her because she was just so incredibly STUPID, but now I have another bone to pick with the intellectually challenged house-keeper.

The Lemon Meringue Pie Lie.

Remember in her debut, Amelia decides to whip up a little Lemon Meringue Pie before she launches into her literal interpretations of the to-do list left for her by her new employers? She trots into the kitchen, adds a little of this and a pinch of that, all the while wearing her hand bag over her forearm) and then tosses a fully formed pie into the oven. My seven year old pointed out that this activity would have taken her no more than a half hour and probably not even that long because the "rich folks" that own the home left saying that they will return in an hour. In that time, in addition to whipping up her little phony pie, Bedelia changes the bathroom towels (by cutting designs in them), "dusts" the living room by standing (wearing her SHOES !) on the sofa and throwing dusting powder around the room, dresses the turkey in clothing - that she actually MAKES - and trims a steak in ribbons and bows. She also "puts out the lights" by hanging the bulbs out on the clothesline, draws the drapes (on an easel), and measures some rice (with a measuring tape). These activities alone should have taken up the better part of the hour, leaving her a very little time to make her little Lemon pie.

But, make the pie she does and it is such a success that it keeps her from being fired for her idiocy.

I guess that is my lead up to saying that there is NO WAY that one can make a Lemon Meringue pie in such a short period of time, unless one used a mix and a pre-made crust, which as the text clearly states and the illustrations show, Amelia does NOT do. She is, for all her other domestic shortcomings, a scratch baker.

I recently attempted to make a Lemon Meringue Pie at the request of my husband and son and I am here to tell you that it took me quite a bit longer than a half hour. More like an hour and a half, not counting the time it took for me to re-zest additional lemons after I mistakenly added the first zest to the egg whites instead of the lemon juice. I tried to get the zest out of the egg whites but after a few frantic attempts concluded that I would have to separate some additional eggs. THEN, my thermometer must not have been working because I blended the two parts of the filling prematurely and doing so necessitated a whole lot longer cooking process than promised by the recipe. By the time I finished the pie, with no purse on my tired arm by the way, I was so over that pie and I had worked up a little resentment over having been requested to make the dastardly thing in the first place.

I won't be making another any time soon. I'll just spend my time cleaning my house, intelligently.

So there Amelia.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

New Year's Greetings

Happy New Year, Loyal Ones. As we head into the overcrowded gym season, I thought I would provide a link to a New Year's post I wrote a couple of years back when I was a much more prolific writer (for better or for worse).

A New Year's Idea

I have not yet ventured to the gym in 2008, but I shall do so tomorrow and on Friday. I fully expect it to be loaded with people who have not set foot inside a fitness facility of any sort for years. As your BloomingtonGirl tries - and nearly always succeeds - never to be mean or sneering in public, I shall not cast any nasty looks toward the newest gym members. But, in the interest of full disclosure to my Loyal Readers, I will admit that I will inwardly be very annoyed and judgmental, though less so than in previous years because of the ten pounds of semi-solid jiggly lard I have put on since moving to the Hoosier State.

Perhaps this is what a previously Loyal Reader meant when she said " I kept hoping that some Midwest charm would rub off on you and that you'd start showing a little compassion and heart over time".

I think that she was wrong in assuming that the Midwest charm did not rub off on me. It did indeed. It just went straight to my hips, thighs and behind.