Meatloaf Cupcakes

31 March 2010 | 3 Comments
This is a re-post from January 2010 so you can enjoy them with your family for April Fools Day tomorrow.  I am taking a few days and the weekend off from blogging.  I will be spending April Fools Day {and the weekend also!} in our newly re-modeled bathroom with a vat of primer, tile, my husband, & a ladder.  Sounds pretty kinky, but I promise you, it's not. 

I'll be back in full force next week with all kinds of excitement including the bathroom reveal, the Easter tablescape, and a 29 Days of Giving update.   

I hope you have a magnificent Easter weekend with your family!

I can't wait for dinner tonight.  Oh yeah, it's going to be a good one.

I made these fab meatloaf cupcakes last summer after I read about them on Bake at 350.  Bridget made them as an April Fools dinner for her family.  {She is also added some amazing cupcakes for dessert.}  The meatloaf cupcakes were a huge hit with Finnegan.  I credit these with curing his {OMG he is not my child!} hatred of mashed potatoes.  I love how easy it is to sneak in tons of veggies, they were lighter tasting than my usual brick of a meatloaf, plus let's face it, it will make you a fun mom to serve these. 

This weekend, Dave and I were talking about the meal plan for the week, and he asked me to make them again.  Six months later he remembered them.  If that doesn't convince you to give these a try, I don't know what will!

This time, I will also be making horseradish mashed potatoes instead of making instant that are pictured below.  {Seriously, try these potatoes... they are Amazing.}

Recipe {adapted from Bake at 350}

1/2 lb ground chuck
1/2 lb ground pork {or 1/4 lb ground pork and 1/4 lb ground turkey}
1 chopped carrot
1 chopped parsnip
1/2 large white onion
3/4 c bread crumbs
1/4 c milk
2 Tb chopped fresh parsley
2 eggs
1 Tb ketchup
1 Tb worcestershire
thyme, rosemary, seasoned salt & pepper to taste {around 1/2 - 1 tsp of the thyme & rosemary}

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a cupcake pan with a little Pam or olive oil.

Sautee the parsnip, carrot, & white onion until just softened.  {Bonus: You could add celery, green pepper, or any other veggie your family likes.}  Stick this in the food processor on pulse until the veggies are finely chopped.  Add the veggies to a large mixing bowl with all of the other ingrediants and mix well.  It feels gross, but really the best way is to use your hands and mush it all together. 

Add the meat to the cupcake tin in 12 equal portions.  Bake for 20-25 minutes until browned and they pull away from the sides of the pan a bit.

Serve with the vegetable of your choice & mashed potatoes piped on top with a large star tip.


30 March 2010 | 5 Comments
There is a wonderful mythical law of nature that the three things we crave most in life -- happiness, freedom, and peace of mind -- are always attained by giving them to someone else.  Peyton C. March

The first time I remember doing something for someone I didn't know was helping to fill food baskets at church for Thanksgiving.  I remember not being able to grasp the concept that someone wouldn't have food as I loaded the items into the bushel baskets we were filling.  There were so many, all lined up for filling and delivery to families who couldn't afford to purchase a turkey of their own.  Each had a ticket attached saying the number of people in the family it was going to, there were "ones" for elderly members who didn't have anyone to celebrate with, there were "sevens" of large families with many children.  It is something that sticks like glue in my memory.

You know already about the birthday plans.  And if you have any ideas, I would love to hear them.

I have been planning.  And talking to my friends about it.  Noelle, she was the first person who said she would join me.  And I've been asking for help... very soon, I'll be asking you.  I hope you don't mind doing something kind, something great or small, to help me celebrate. 

And I've been shopping for items I'm going to be taking here.  They have a wish list.  It is pretty humbling to realize that there are people who need socks, or baby shampoo, or underwear, or even paper towels.  Things we don't even think about.  We get irritated if we run out and have to go to the store, we just assume they will be there.  But what if they weren't?  If you are local and you want to contribute something to the growing box, please let me know.  It was the first place I knew I wanted to help.

Today, the most lovely package arrived.  Yellow Jacket was made especially for me.  Becki is an amazing, intensely creative and lovely human being.  Flowers & Honey will be a part of the birthday plans.  She did that because she is awesome.  She was the first person who offered something wonderful for me to give to someone else.  If you have something you'd like to give that day, contact me.

And I received an email because my mother has been working hard.  You wonder where I learned the power of giving?  You have to look no further, why I was at the church filling baskets... all her.  The email that I received was from Derek, her co-worker, telling me that he & his wife took a child with muscular dystrophy to a hockey game for no other reason than they knew he would love it and wishing me happy birthday.  I am not sure how many people she has asked to participate, but Derek... you're the first.

What is your first memory of giving?  Who is the first person who pops into your mind that needs an act of kindness?  Will you leave your first comment here today and share it with us?


29 March 2010 | 2 Comments

This weekend, while Dave was slaving away in the confines of our bathroom with my incredible father who has been busting his ass for the last four days right alongside, I went shopping.  At Ikea.  With my mother.  And Finn.  And Gale. 

Someone remind me to tell you all sometime about my serious addiction problem with napkins & party stuff, especially those found at Ikea.

We had entirely too much fun in the aisles of the Swedish mega store.  Like two carts AND a flatbed amounts of fun.  Finn wanted to bring home that handheld strainer so badly, so he could, "get Nemo & Dorie out of the tank."  I almost wish that I had given in on that, but we don't need any more kitchen gadgets.

So the only problem left was to figure out how we might squeeze it all into the car.  Which granted, we should have thought of sooner, but we didn't.  Instead, we played tetris with all manner of pillows and wine glasses and shelves and rugs that had to ride all the way home wedged in between us.  And then there was the roof tying.  Dear Lord, the roof tying. 

It felt as if we were riding home in a clown car.

And in case you're keeping track... I will have a shower AND two fancy GFI plugs.  The drywall guys arrive first thing in the morning.  Woo hoo!  A little break for Dave and walls for me, it's a win win.

And here is a snippet of my next project.  You know, because a bathroom remodel, planning 34 random acts of kindness, the 29 days of giving, and reading a book isn't enough for this girl.  Lots of fun to come!

I leave you with this... Dexter, the wonder cat, asleep at the hotel on Finnegan's new car carpet.

I hope you had a fabulous {and much more relaxing than mine} weekend.  Tell me what you did!

Kiwi. Not a Morning Fruit.

28 March 2010 | 10 Comments
I bought 4 pounds of kiwi at Costco today.




Because Finnegan thought the sample was good?  Because my mother is the worst/best person to shop with because she talks me into buying things like 4 pounds of kiwi?  Because I love kiwi?  Because we needed a new spring fruit instead of our go to items of the winter?


It was because I learned something & I wanted to share.

I love kiwi.  It is delicious and juicy and tart and the little black seeds add a crunch.  What is not to like?

Peeling the little suckers.  That's what.  They're slippery once you get them peeled.  And they are really juicy, so while you're peeling it, it's squirting juice all over and sliding around.  Highly annoying.  So while I love them, they've always been too much of a pain in the ass and therefore wouldn't be a good thing first thing in the morning before I've had my coffee.  You know... cranky time.  I save them for special fruit salads.

But that, my friends, has changed thanks to the fabulous Costco kiwi sample lady.

It's dumb really, that I didn't know this.  {It's like learning how to change your blogger noreply email.} It's so easy you want to smack your forehead Homer Simpson style.

So I learned that kiwi is indeed a morning fruit.  I am just the dork that never knew it.

A Little Remodel Update

26 March 2010 | 6 Comments

Dave has been finding some interesting stuff! 

A light box that was original to the house, see the 1915 patent?  Also pictured is the knob & tube electrical {also original to the house} that I captured before they took it out.  It was the last bit in the house to be updated.  

Finn is enjoying peeking his little head through the access panel {in the hallway} to the shower.  He also has been telling Dave regularly that all of the work in the bathroom is cool.  And asking him if he 'broked' the walls.

Aside from the big mess in my house, things have been moving smoothly.  I'm not quite sure if there is ever a solution to the freaking film of dust that comes from ripping out plaster.  Demo & clean up took half a day, which included capping the plumbing before they started ripping it all out, so I really shouldn't complain.

OK, I lied.  Dave also put his foot through my ceiling, but thankfully it was over the stairs, so we'll get it fixed when we do some more drywall repairs in the hallway later this summer.

Peeing in the middle of the night is also REALLY cold.  The walls are down to the studs & the window molding is also gone and that means a drafty, freezing bathroom.  Plus, it's pretty creepy since, ya know, there are no walls or ceiling or umm anything in there.   

So, there we are.

Demo - Check
Electrical - Check
Plumbing - Tomorrow
Finish stripping the trim - Sunday

Monday the drywall guys arrive and then we should have some more progress to share!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!


25 March 2010 | 1 Comments
Tonight, the window got stripped with a heat gun, yay for lead paint.  We Dave found that out by letting Finn gnaw on the windowsill with a handy dandy lead paint testing kit.  Tomorrow morning, our last showers in the old bathroom.  We should have everything down to the studs by tomorrow evening.  {Please send some good juju that we don't run into anything too terribly screwy.  Like lead paint.  Um, yeah.}

The shelves have been pulled out, the medicine cabinet emptied, one last decision on a paint color for the new drywall needs to be made.  The UPS man has been leaving pretty packages at our door.  The dumpster is arriving tomorrow at noon.  Dave has been reading tiling books like it's his job.  {<-- Sarah, I totally used the right it's/its just for you!}  The drop cloths should *fingers crossed* keep out the assinine amount of dust and grime that comes with tearing out almost 100 year old plaster. 

And the point is, I'm terrifyingly nervous ready for it to begin.  I might need to psych myself up a bit more & find a place to take myself, a toddler, and a dog tomorrow afternoon for naptime, which we just now figured out.  At 11:47 pm. We are awesome parents like that.

Anything exciting going on in your house?  Need something to do?  Go on over to the Bloggy BFF's {not only is Sarah the grammar police, she introduced Ash and me.} house and knock on her door, flood her comments like I know you can, and tell her she needs to be here for my birthday random acts of kindness craziness

Tell her I'll even let her hang out in my fancy new bathroom.

Freaks In Love.

23 March 2010 | 8 Comments
For the record, I was going to write a post about Dave today.  How awesome he is and give him a little encouragement on his handy Manny skills as he begins the bathroom remodel from hell.  {Yes, our only bathroom is going to be torn to bits starting Thursday.  This should be fun.}  I was going to publicly announce to the world that not only did I marry a programming genius who is nearly the most intelligent person I know, but he's got mad working with his hands skills as well.  He does all the dirty jobs in our house without so much as a complaint.  He re-wires things and fixes cars and figures out how to tile and has things like "working on things jeans" in his wardrobe.

But then he called me a socialist and we started arguing having a discussion about healthcare reform.  He never fights fair.  I mean seriously I should be able to call him a rightwing middle class republican asshole male without him calling me a commie socialist tree hugger, right?

AND he told me he didn't want to see Elton John in concert.  Hold me closer Tony Danza?  Really?  Dave is a musician!  {Yeah, ANOTHER talent.  It's getting old, isn't it?}  He has seen ridiculous concerts and he won't go see Elton Freaking John?

But then, we agreed to disagree, as we always do.  It is how we continue to try & remain civil while on opposite sides of the fence, something we both think Congress might need a lesson on, that makes our marriage work.  I stipulated that the bill is far from perfect and he agreed that he doesn't want to see Annabelle affected by lifetime limitation or being denied insurance for a pre-existing condition.  Then, we just mumble under our breath anything further on the subject. 

And he said he would go to Elton John just to hear Rocket Man.

I'm pretty sure he likes me, even after all this time.

Free Printable {Red & Pink} Cupcake Toppers

22 March 2010 | 12 Comments

Continuing with my 29 days of giving and today, YOU are the recipient!  The cupcake toppers I designed for Meme & Judy's birthday can be found right here on my scribd account.  There are three designs in reds & pinks for you to use at your own parties.  Print on heavy cardstock, then either cut them out or use a 2" punch... I used the Fiskars XL punch and holy mother, I will not go back to cutting ever again.  {I am putting the scalloped circle & square on my wish list.  Hint, hint Mom!}  Then, glue them back to back on sucker sticks. {You can find these at Michael's or sometimes at the supermarket.}  Couldn't be easier!

I would be happy to have you to download & use as you'd like, please link back to {So Wonderful, So Marvelous} if you post elsewhere.  Feel free to email links or photos to me, I would love to see how you used these! 


Family Birthday Dinner

21 March 2010 | 3 Comments

Meme used to make dinner for each one of us on our birthday.  Oh sure, since there were so many of us, sometimes she would combine all of the March birthdays or the September birthdays.   But it was something she did happily, she even baked us cakes.  I always chose white cake with her homemade chocolate frosting.

So, I was excited to do the same for her.

All in all, it was a big success.  Everyone ate & drank, sang obnoxiously boisterously, enjoyed yummy desserts & watched Kansas lose, paving the way {fingers crossed} for Ohio State to kick all kinds of butt.  I am pretty sure her birthday wish was for the Buckeyes to win the whole tournament so she can win her basketball pool.   

The Menu

Chips, Salsa, & Guacamole
Pecan Bleu Cheese Dip & Crackers
Carrots & Cucumbers
Turkey Burger Sliders with Guacamole & Spicy Aoili
Ground Beef Sliders
Green Salad with Strawberry Basil Vinagrette
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Brownie Bites
Vanilla-Almond Cutout Cookies


And the cute bunting??  {Thanks so much Em for the great sewing!!} I got the instructions right here and now I want to make one in every color with the cutest papers ever.  People, it's PAPER & it can be reused again & again.  Em, it's not like you're having a baby, or have a demanding career as a lawyer, or chasing after a toddler... you have time to do nothing but sew bunting for me, right??

I hope your weekend was wonderful!

29 Days of Giving - The 2010 Edition

20 March 2010 | 4 Comments
I am beginning the 29 days of giving challenge today so that my very last day will be April 17th, my birthday.  I am doing this and I can not wait.  I mean, really really can not wait.  If you would like to read about my first round of the 29 days of giving you can click here for all of the posts.

When you sign up on their site, they ask you why you're doing the giving and what you most would like to receive.  Last time, I asked for something for someone else, it was a biggie and she received it.  There is power in the gift of giving to someone else.  If you don't believe me, I would encourage you to take this challenge yourself.

Without being nauseatingly sweet about the reasons behind my participation in the 29 days of giving, I feel like I am extremely fortunate.  My family is healthy and happy.  My husband works extremely hard so that I can stay home with Finnegan.  We have a roof over our heads, food in our bellies, and a soft bed to sleep in each night.  I love my husband and I am thankful for who he is as a person.  I am surrounded by amazingly talented, generous, hilarious, wonderful friends.  And I try to live with purpose, but sometimes the mundane gets in the way.  The 29 days is a challenge and a wonderful reminder to live with purpose and to count your blessings. 

Plus, I want to cross off  #41 on my 101 Things List.  I'm ok with doing something just to see the satisfyingly lovely strikethrough of another thing crossed off.  For realsies, I am that weird.  You know, just in case you doubted it before.

This year, I am doing it a bit differently.  I'm keeping a log of my daily giving and instead of posting daily recaps, I will write about the challenge as the mood strikes and provide some brief recaps.

I am starting my giving off with birthdays too... my Meme's & Aunt Judy's birthday dinner.  Stay tuned next week for a re-cap!

Have you ever done the 29 days of giving?  Is it something you think you could do?  Have you heard of it before?  Do you have ideas about what you'd like to see me do for my random acts of kindness birthday?  People in the area you'd like to help?  I would love your input!

March Madness.

18 March 2010 | 14 Comments
I don't get basketball. 

But my Meme does.  My {soon to be... like 5 days from now} 86 year old grandma is hard core, people.

And she swears at the tv.  Oh sure, she'll deny it in the presence of others, but she totally swears and yells at the tv.  She also does a March Madness pool.  She plays the pious old lady card, but my cousin John will bear witness. 

Yeah, I just had to google, "is it bear witness or bare witness."  I'm still not sure.  Thanks google.

Back to Meme.  I can't divulge the specifics, but she *may* have put a framed photo of Jim Jackson up in her house when he began his career with OSU.  It stayed there for more years than I can count, at least through his college and NBA years.  She re-painted the living room and didn't put the senior photos of her children back up, but Jim Jackson?  He stayed. 

Saturday, we're having her birthday party at my house, so I called to verify the desserts and make sure the times were ok... because the games have begun.  I also needed to make sure they were shown on non-cable stations because we don't have cable and I have to say, I knew she wouldn't show up to her own party if the Buckeyes were on and she couldn't watch.

Two hours later she called me back.  She just wanted to see if I thought she was a lunatic and promised she only wanted to watch if Ohio State was playing.  I assured her it was fine and it was her birthday party after all, well she is sharing it with my aunt too, but no one messes with Meme.

I totally want to be her when I grow up. 

March Madness & My Meme, my Friday Favorites.  If you have a favorite to share, link up with Hillary!

Two Wheels.

Santa was generous to Finnegan this year.  He asked for a motorcycle.  Santa thought maybe he should start with a bike.  Not just any bike... a two wheeler.  It's a Strider balance bike & he he's happy that the weather is nice so that he can ride it somewhere other than the basement.  The bonus was getting to wear his helmet, all the cool kids wear one.

So the bike?  It's a two wheeler minus the pedals.  Weird, eh?  Finn said, "Oh.  Daddy?  I think we need to get some more pedals.  My pedals are gone."  The premise is that they learn balance by keeping their feet on the ground and control of their steering while rolling around.  When they finally master it, they push off and put their feet up.  I will be keeping my eyes closed when that happens.   

For now, I'm enjoying seeing my almost 3 year old little man rolling around like one of the big boys.

What are you doing to enjoy the nice weather?

{Disclosure: Santa bought and paid for the Strider.  He, nor I have no affiliation with the company.}

Ken Weiser, Pajama Pants, & the Lunatic Behind the Blog

17 March 2010 | 9 Comments
People in my life know about my blogging.  I am, on this space, who I am in real life.  My besties use it to keep up on my life.  My mom is freakishly proud, though she doesn't really understand why thousands of people pop in here to read about the lunacy.  My high school friends and grade school friends see the posts on Facebook and I know some of them read because they leave me the best comments about freaky bird sex on cable or send me sweet emails about how much they enjoy reading. 

It's still a little weird when someone pops up in person and mentions it.  Especially if I wasn't aware that they were aware of my blog.  It has happened now a few times and I always feel like a goob, most recently a couple weeks ago.  It's one thing for someone to send me an email and say they like visiting, it's another to get a compliment in real life and have to have that flushed "someone likes me" moment when not hiding behind a laptop screen.  And you wonder if they are secretly judging the fact that you show up to clean after a party and you are wearing your pajamas and your hair looks a bit like it's hit a light socket and you got a restless 5 hours of sleep the night before.  {Um, hi Lisa!} 

Because I totally still get that dumbfounded grin when a new reader or even an old reader comments or sends me an email or tells me to my {very red} face they like reading.  And then I feel like the stupid sixth grader talking to Ken Weiser on the phone and hoping that my mother lets me go roller skating with him on Saturday, but I know she won't and I am secretly releived because, let's face it, I am wholly unprepared for that.  By the way, those are the days that I had to stretch the phone cord from the wall to hide on Meme's basement steps to talk on the phone in private and even then, my whole family just knew I was talking to a public school boy.

Shit.  No one tell freaking Ken Weiser to read this. Ok?

What the hell was my point?  Oh yes, tonight I was talking to a friend on gchat about my blog's statistics because she offers good advice and doesn't get {too} pissed that I was asking the 2,849,399th stupid question and I realized something.  I hope that no matter how big or small this blog is, or how long I've been doing it, that feeling never goes away.  I hope that I still am privileged enough to connect with amazing and generous people like Ash, or Sarah, or Hillary, or Becki, or Rachel.  And get to hang out with people that I was friends with before we ever started blogging.  And even my blogless peeps like Noelle, or Stephanie, or Amy, or Amy, or Kelly continue to participate here with me, just as they do.

And just so you know, if you see me in the grocery store and I'm wearing slippers and my hair is sticking out in 12 places, still stop me and say hi.  Or to you there, reading for the first or fiftieth time, leave a comment and introduce yourself.  I'm happy to have each of you reading and if you were here, I'd totally buy you a pint of Guiness.

Happy St Patty's Day.


16 March 2010 | 6 Comments
I always go to bed and put my FREEZING feet on Dave.  Even if he went to sleep 3 hours before me because he has a plane to catch at dark thirty in the morning and it wakes him up. 

I am hoping my bloggy bff decides to make the trek to the OH for my birthday.  I am also hoping that she posts pics of her remodel and new floors soon before I have to go down to the Arkansas and kick her ass.

I am excited and dreading our bathroom remodel that is set to begin in about ten days.  We live in a house with only one bathroom.  I am predicting that Dave and I fight exactly 43 times in the midst of it. 

Spring cleaning?  I clean everything with bleach.  My friend Bunny says she equates the smell of bleach with dirty because that is what they used to clean the hallways of apartments in NYC.  I say those in crack houses shouldn't throw stones.  I'm good with my house smelling like a swimming pool half the time sometimes when I eventually get around to cleaning.

I like burnt pepperoni on my pizza.  It's way better than limp greasy pepperoni.  I also like pineapple and mushroom.  But not canned mushrooms because those are just gross. 

I am quite possibly the worlds biggest procrastinator.  I wait till the last minute to do most everything and then I run around like a maniac.

I'm also a compulsive list maker.  {But not completer... see above procrastination confession.}  Dave finds half crossed off lists all over the house.  And they always have to be on new paper.  It's a terrible habit.

So um, make me feel better and leave your confession in the comments.  And happy Tuesday!

Breakfast Strata.

15 March 2010 | 3 Comments
It's like quiche only better.  Because it's easy.  And has the same quichey flavor.  Only, did I say it was EASY?

Easy Breakfast Strata


7 cups of bread, cubed.  {For the super lazy, ahem like me, that is 9 Costco dinner rolls.}

8 ounces of Emanthaler Swiss  {Trust me, go for the good cheese here people, it makes a difference.}

5 large eggs

1 cup of milk

1 cup of heavy cream

2 TB butter, melted

1 TB dijon mustard

1/2 t. thyme

1/4 t. nutmeg

1/4 t. salt {I used Spanish Rosemary sea salt... because when you spend $50 on salt you should use it.}

1/4 t. black pepper

1/4 t. onion powder

2 shakes of Tabasco

Cube the bread, shred the swiss, & set aside.  Crack eggs and whisk with a fork.  Add milk, cream, mustard, spices, & Tabasco to the eggs.  Add a layer of bread to the bottom of a baking dish, then a layer of cheese, then repeat.  Pour the egg mixture on top.  Then pour the melted butter on.  Pop in the fridge overnight.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Allow the strata to come to room temperature, about 30 minutes on the counter.  Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour.  Allow to sit for 10-15 minutes, then cut into squares. 

This is such a forgiving recipe that if you'd like to add in your choice of vegetables {spinach, mushrooms, or red onion sounds divine} or meats {sausage, bacon, procuttio, or chorizo are good choices} you can do that too.  Just sautee the veggies or cook the meat and allow to cool before adding to the strata.  Maybe about a cup or cup and a half cooked would be a good amount.  If you do this, you may want to add another egg and up the milk & cream 1/4 cup each, just make a judgement call when you get it all together.

Another tip?  I used I think a 9x13 pan... it would be better to do a deeper and less spread out pan so that it's thicker.  Next time I think I am going to use a 9x9 or 8x8 square pan instead.

Enjoy!  And if you try the recipe, stop back to let me know how you tweaked it for your family.

Celebrity Apprentice 2010 is HILARIOUS.

14 March 2010 | 1 Comments
Oh man. 

I don't post much about tv.  We don't have cable so that limits my knowledge of the batshit crazy shows like Real Housewives, Flavor of Love, Jon & Kate Plus Eight.  Shows like Entourage, Big Love, & Gossip Girl I watch on dvd {usually one after another like the lunatic that I am} or we watch online.  People like Speidi don't usually hit my radar unless they do something assinine.  Ignorance Cablelessness is bliss. 

Y'all.  Celebrity Apprentice belongs on cable.  And my addiction after 2 hours is reason enough for me never to get cable.

This show is hilarious and a train wreck all in one.

I'm not going to give you a recap of the first episode because someone else can do that better.  I'm going to tell you why I'm watching this season, aside from trying to figure out the Donald's hair.
  • Sharon Osbourne & Cyndi Lauper both say anything that pops into their brain.  Cyndi has already called the Donald fat and brought up the 4 month Rosie fight.  Sharon said the diner was like the Star Wars Bar with all of the stuff going on, she also called herself a bitch and said to watch out.
  • Rob Blagojevich.  The trainiest train wreck of the whole show.  How an entire state elected this man Governor is beyond me.  I will say, he has balls of steel to be as self deprecating as he was.  He and the Donald are going to be forming their own hair club for men after this, I can just see it.
  • Bret Michaels.  Dude, they named the guys company ROCK SOLID at his prompting and then he told them that was his t-shirt line.  He's wearing eyeliner and has the hair and Carol Leifer already called him a man whore for his stint on Rock of Love.
  • Sinbad is really funny.  Really really funny.
  • Curtis Stone can cook for me anytime.  Yummy.
  • The first 10 minutes of the show The Donald made mention that he was going to fire all their asses.  And let's face it, I can't wait to see who is next.  "Those beyotches are going to be soooorry."
Are you watching this season?

Top O' The {Sunday} Mornin' To Ya.

Mini Guiness Cupcakes are a great way to celebrate St Pattys Day.

And quite possibly my favorite picture of Finnegan's first year was St Patty's Day.
He was 11 months old.
He looks like a drunk angry little lepruchaun, doesn't he?

So, with St Patty's Day just 3 days away, how will you celebrate?

Snow Bunny Extraordinaire

12 March 2010 | 0 Comments
Elise from the Attic is a weekly blog post from my sister Elise who is currently kicking up her heels and studying her ass off in Kentucky. She is a fashionista and a lunatic, but we love her. Mostly. Here is this week's edition of:

I am not a very athletic girl nor am I an outdoorsy girl. I tried every sport that was offered in grade school, but mostly because my friends did.

I purposely avoided eye contact with my teammates in the fear that they would pass me the basketball. I couldn't move without double dribbling.

When I ran cross country, I often got tired during a race and proceeded to stroll along, picking dandelions until I finally reached the finish line.

My parents loved coming to my soccer games to watch me practice cheerleading moves and dances while talking to myself on defense, where the coaches threw me because no one from the other team usually made it that far.

In the summer, I lay outside for a good ten minutes before running for the air conditioned house.

I hate hot weather, cold weather, wind, rain, fog and humidity.

All this considered, I signed up to go on my sorority ski trip last weekend though I had never been, and boy was that a sight.

I woke up earlier than should be legal with quite a headache from the night before. The ski and boot rental area smelled horrid and the boots dug into my shins. It took me a good hour to shuffle thirty feet in the frigid air to the bunny hill, but I was a trooper. The biggest hurdle was learning how to stop once I got going, which believe it or not, was quite a problem.

A few times I flew past the designated stop area my instructor had given us and had to scream for people to move out of the way if they wanted their life spared.

There were toddlers trying to show me the correct way to stop, that wasn't at all embarrassing...

No worries though, I was a master at the bunny hill by nightfall, a small feat for some, but a pride worthy accomplishment for a indoors kinda girl whose favorite sport is shopping.

Until Next Week,
Elise from the Attic

Bird Sex. For Amy.

11 March 2010 | 7 Comments
This past summer, Amy used to be fun jobless and my partner in crime for visits to the park or other fun activities.  Now she is gainfully employed and back to school. 

Except this week.

This week is spring break.  Woooooo!  Far from the drunken spring breaks of our youth, this week we're doing fun stuff with the boys and their matching Cars hats that Amy stupidly kindly bought them, that they refuse to take off to celebrate their collective birthdays which are a mere 6 weeks apart.  But I'm mostly not bitter about having a child that wants to wear a Cars hat everywhere or anything.

First up on the list of fun spring break activities... wet t-shirt contest the zoo!

Birds get their freak on.  In front of unsuspecting people visiting the zoo with small children.  I am not sure if I thought they were like the virgin birth or what, but I was shocked.  Where do eggs come from?  I like to think they are gently placed in the nest by the hand of God.  Not the result of the craziness I witnessed today.  Did anyone know this? 

And another bird watched.  It was all very kinky if you ask me.

Amy called him the wingman. 

I really have the corniest most warped funniest friends in the world.

Lest you think that we only watched bird fornication on our educational trip to the zoo, we also saw Nemo and Dorie and jellyfish.  And seals and the polar bears.

And they dressed up like bees.  I am plotting a return trip when they are 16 and making them recreate this photo.  Yeah, I'm not really holding out too much hope that'll happen.

Hold on to your Rembrandts... today we're hitting the art museum.

Revolver Restaurant. 5 Years of Janet & Rico. {That is 35 in dog years.}

10 March 2010 | 5 Comments
My mom got married the same year that Dave & I did.  I had an insane wedding with lots of people, a martini luge & crazy fun.  She had nine people, on a beach in St Martin followed up by a private chef coming to the house and cooking us all dinner. Aside from the international incidents involving Dave, it was awesome.  And relaxing.  And perfect.  Quite possibly the best vacation and low maintenance wedding ever.  They didn't even tell us they were getting married until the day before, though Jenny, Lyndsey & I had a pretty good idea that they would.

So, last week my mom called and asked us if we wanted to go back to Revolver {pop over there to check it out, it's a great story} to celebrate their anniversary.  Um yes.  A thousand times yes.  If you have ever have the opportunity to visit Findlay, Ohio you have to go there.  Really.  Even the Wall Street Journal thinks so.  And make a reservation.  Even on a Tuesday. 

This is Gale & Frank.  You might remember them from our last visit to Revolver in the disco limo?

This is Lyndsey, one of my lunatic sisters.  In the past two weeks she has gone from being quite possibly the pickiest eater I have known the past 31 years to eating wheat bread, duck, beef cheek, and a whole host of other things.  And liking it.  I'm not quite sure what has gotten into her, but her horizons have been expanded exponentially and I am just so proud.  Plus, she is funny as hell and she almost peed her pants in our car on the way home.  And since she yelled at me for telling you all that she puked after watching Blair Witch, I am sure I'll get a phone call about this one too.  See how much I love you guys?  I'm even willing to deal with Lyndsey's wrath.

I made her give me the 5 years pose.  She's such a sport.  That's half of Dave's face on purpose, really I was trying to capture the fact that the kitchen is RIGHT there and it makes for such a great dining experience. 

The food was amazing.  We ordered one of everything on the menu except for the rabbit and there wasn't anything that wasn't perfection.  The pork belly melted in your mouth.  The duck had a rich smokey flavor without overpowering the flavor of the meat.  The amuse was a popcorn soup that was like sipping liquid popcorn.  The potato gnocchi with beef cheek appetizer was unbelievably rich and perfectly seasoned. 

And the desserts... an Elvis sundae made with peanut butter ice cream, banana ice cream, and bacon brittle.  There was a chocolate creme brulee that I think my sister wanted to marry.  And my favorite, sticky toffee pudding with a stout ice cream.  YUM.

If you've been reading this blog for any amount of time, you know how crazy my family can be.  We laughed loudly and they didn't even kick us out.  We drank copious amounts of {amazing} wine.  It was a wonderful celebration of these two freaks of nature.

Mom, while I would have rather been sitting my ass on a beach in St Martin to celebrate your five years, Revolver was a pretty close second.  Many many more happy years to you and Richard.

An added bonus?  #42 crossed off my list!
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