Thursday, October 22, 2009

What Happened To Cancer Sucks?

Another once bites the dust. Two losses, both Preppy Sue and Cancer Sucks With Lilly Pulitzer On Your Side, in one little week. Sad news times two!

I know Cancer Sucks left Blogville for a private, personal reason that she is not disclosing but I thought she might get a chuckle out of my guesses anyway. She said it was OK for me to post this and I am fairly certain that none of these are the correct guess. Her few and far between hints were just driving my mind wild. I seriously love a good guessing game. Though I've never had one that lasted quite this long.

Here's what I do know; she is not writing a book (but awesome guess, Kim!), her absence will last about a year (maybe more?), and her health is not a concern right now (thankfully!). Knowing only that, here's what I came up with. Let me know if you have guesses too. I know Cancer Sucks is reading and will think this is all rather humorous.


* You are prego. Now I am fairly certain you said this was no longer possible but on the off chance I am wrong (because let's face it, I am wrong frequently!), prego baby doc told you to blog no more because you are high risk.

* You are filming a show for TLC. Your adorable family was begged to replace the never filmed Kate Plus 8. This is actually the guess that seems most likely in an odd sort of way. I'll watch. And not just because I watch all the TLC shows. You know I love me some TLC.

* You are going on a speaking tour. Talking about your story from cancer and back again. Book not in the works but soon to follow for sure.

* Lilly Pulitzer hired you to be their spokesperson/supermodel. And you get to keep a sample of every design. If this is it, I am not sure we can be friends as I would be crazy jealous. But happy for you too.

* You are running for public office. I'd move just to vote for you.

* Hub's job is requiring y'all to move for a year. Hopefully somewhere fabulous like London or Switzerland.

* You are going back to grad school.

* And my second best guess is that you are adopting. And taking time off to bond.


So there you go, that's the best I can come up with. I wish you and the family the very best, Cancer Sucks!. It's a sad week to lose both you and Preppy Sue but I totally understand that family needs must come before blogs.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Just Say No

Have y'all read this post by Jill? I am the opposite. I have had a chronic case of The Yes since childhood. I sort of function better when I am slightly over-scheduled. But I also tend to lose my mind a little. It's a six of one, half dozen of the other sort of thing. I'm happiest when I'm busy but it makes me crazy and sometimes sick at the same time.

Well I've been feeling run down lately. Does anyone else sort of feel the pre-sickies a few days before real sickness (cold, sinus, flu, whatever) sets in? Its like my body's way of saying, "hey KK, here's your 48-72 hour warning to eat leafy greens, vitamin C and get some quality sleep in you before you will be forced to suffer in bed for a week." So today, I took note. I was asked to help with all these last minute things that I usually say "yes" to, even though it is completely rude to expect me to be at your beck and call. But I am addicted to yes. I think Jill wrote that post yesterday for me, though. Today, I said no. I said it politely of course. And offered to meet next week if needed. But this week, I have a lot on my plate already. And I just don't think it is wise to add anything extra. This quick change to cold weather is wreaking havoc on my sinuses. And I've yet to go get my flu shot. So it's early to bed for me this week. No extras. No, no, no. But with kindest regards. No.

Also, I finally remembered to put my heated blankie on my bed last night. I actually use it under my fitted sheet to warm me from the bottom up. I cannot believe I never owned one until last year. It's like a crockpot for my bed. (y'all know about my crockpot love!) Keeps me perfectly warm all night long. In high school, I had a teacher who used to give us the same bonus question on ever test. She wrote "happiness is ....." and all we had to do was fill in the blank. It was only worth one point but even if you bombed the test, you got that bonus and left the room feeling a bit happier. So my lovelies, happiness is my heated blanket. What is your happiness today?

Footies



Sorry for the tiny photo but I took it on my blackberry and I don't know how to make it larger. Actually, this was the first time I used a phone camera, so I felt very proud of myself just making it this far! Can you tell what you are looking at? Adult footie pajamas hanging up in Target! As a kid I LOVED footie pajamas. But as an adult, it gives me the shivers to think about how cold you would be as you stripped down to use the restroom in the middle of a cold winter night. Burrr. The blue or purple colored set is a sock monkey and I forgot (and can't see in the tiny photo) what the pink is. Made me laugh though.

Monster Monday

When I was 16, on July 03rd to be exact, I left my Satan's house for good. Until that point, my father had always insisted that no matter how terrible she was, it was important for me to maintain a relationship with my mother. God bless him. Not many ex-spouses would do that for the sake of their child. And even though I went through hell, I think the fact that I left entirely on my own accord had a major positive impact in my life. My father was actually out of the country when the straw finally broke.

I bet you are wondering what the major catastrophe was that lead to this. Well like so many things in life, it was a nothing event. My mother said that she and Satan would refuse to help me with my luggage (they were picking me up at the airport from a 2 week church tour through Europe) if I didn't hug and kiss him. I refused and so did they. So they stood there as family after family greeted their children with hugs and love and excitement to hear about their fabulous experience. They did nothing. Well told me how terrible I was, but they sure as heck didn't help me with any of my major teenage luggage, pillow, shopping bags, backpack and all the other crap that I had with me. At the time it felt like major drama. Looking back, I see that it was not really that big of a deal. It sucked but I managed. I faked a smile just like I always did. Ironically, the older I get, the worse I am at the fake happiness. If I am tired or unhappy or sad, it show. Clear as a crystal ball. Sometimes that's annoying but overall, I think I like that my feelings show so easily. It makes me feel more honest. Isn't that life though- the little things set you off? It was the straw that broke the camel's back. Right there in the middle of the airport. That lead to screaming and yelling and tears.

My car was at my dad's house though. They were supposed to take me to get it the following day as dad was out of the country on business. I called one of my best friends, Doc, hysterical, as Satan and his wife recorded my phone call. They recorded just about every phone call I ever made. Saying that they didn't. But I wasn't deaf. And later they admitted it. Stating that they never trusted me or my dad. They for sure recorded ever call I made to my dad while they were in the house. Anyway, my friend Doc and her family didn't quite know what to do. They knew many of the details of my life but taking me away from family was different. I ended up packing up anything I thought I might need (wasn't much- I never really kept much there- the majority of my clothes and belongings were always at my home- my dad's house) that night with my door locked. I told my mother and Satan that I would never return to their house. I went on and on about how this was my final night in their house. After I was done, my mother threatened me saying that if I left I was not welcome back in Satan's house. I literally laughed. I said, did you not just hear me, I am not ever coming back! The next day they dropped me off at my dad's house. I can't remember if I said anything but I doubt it. I am excellent at giving the silent treatment. Doc and her boyfriend and Florida's-now-hub came to get me that afternoon (it was July 04th) and we spent the afternoon/evening with friends at the beach. I was traumatized but it was actually a good way to get my head sort of on straight. They actually were not out of my life for good but it was the last time I was ever under their control. And I didn't speak to her for about a year. Like on the phone speak to her. It was the spring of my senior year of high school before I willingly saw her again.

Leaving Satan and his wife is still today the most significant event of my life. All because of luggage. I think it's funny now. There is nothing in my life about which I feel more pride! It takes ever ounce of your being to walk away from family. I have such conflicted sympathy for women like my mother. On one hand, I understand how impossible it feels to walk out that door and never look back. On the other hand, it was her job to love and protect me. She failed miserably!

But it was the very best decision I've ever made. Many judged me. Many still do. But that was the moment I grew free. It was a horrible night but I smile when I think about it. That night changed my life for the better!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Head Egg


Last night I had this sore spot on my forehead, just between my eyes. It was raised too. I thought, great, a zit. Because that's fun in my 30's. I put cream on it and went to bed. I woke up this morning and it is now a huge egg. Not a zit. Perhaps a bug bite, but I can't see a bite mark. It hurts like heck though. Sometimes I wake up with bruises on my legs that I don't remember getting. But that's fairly normal, right? And they don't usually hurt. This egg on my head thing hurts like no other. And I can put concealer on it, but it's hard to hide a huge lump between your eyes. I don't think I got clunked in my face and forgot about it. That's the sort of thing one tends to remember. During Phys Ed in junior high one day we were playing volleyball. I went to get the ball, missed, and the darn thing hit me right smack in the face. That was like 18 years ago and I still remember. In the fourth grade, I was playing outside in the school yard and did a high kick (I like to pretend I'm a Rockette!). I was standing on cement. My other leg came out from under me. I fell flat on my ass. The wind got knocked out of me. I still remember. But this darn head egg, that hurts like crazy, no idea where it came from. Hello, annoying. And ouch!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Berry Good Time



This is what I did on my Friday and Saturday night. I read Lera's tales of the goodness that is blueberry and strawberry butter several days ago. And I knew immediately that I needed to make a batch myself. I knew I would be able to get the strawberries on the way cheap - one of my local dollar stores sells the normal size bags of frozen either plain strawberries or mixed berries for a buck. I don't drive out that way often but it was worth it for big shopping bag of berries. This entire project, including the jars, came to about $15. I figured it out and I spent about $1.00/jar. Cheap, easy, fun and yummy. I made 12 little baby jars and one and a half big pint jars.





The recipe requires very little effort but a whole heck of a lot of time. It took me about 25 hours, start to finish. But about 24 hours of that time I did nothing. The crockpot did all the work for me. Also, the recipe had me scared out of my mind that it would splatter to the high heavens. Mine didn't even splatter on the lid. I took each bag of frozen berries, cut a slit in the top, and popped them in the microwave individually for about a minute or two to soften them up. Then food processed each bag while the next was in the microwave. Easy peasy. I was hoping the stunning red color would last but alas, in the end it is a reddish version of an apple butter color. That deep reddish brown. The flavor is just this incredibly intense strawberry flavor. I doubled the recipe and only used about a 1/4 of the sugar. I figured I could always add more but I judged correctly. Once cooked down, it is only about 1/2 of what you start with. I didn't need more sugar. Perfection! Oh and I don't need to tell you how amazing my house smells after having strawberries cook for 24 straight hours!!



Friday, October 16, 2009

I Don't Get It


So by now you all know that I watch just about every show on TLC. I've never seen The Office or Lost or the save the cheerleader show. I have yet to even watch Dancing With The Stars this season. But if its on TLC, chances are good that I've seen it. Sometimes twice. Including the much debated about Duggar family. I think they are a hoot, don't judge.

They seem like genuinely nice people. I'd love to meet them. Not in their house though. Why would you get tile floors with so many small but loud voices? I know its easier to clean but the volume level in that house must be at astronomical decibels. Just the thought makes me shudder. I sit with the remote control by my side at all times so that I can constantly lower the volume during commercials. I guess I am sound sensitive.

But I digress. My main question is, why are they still shopping at second hand shops for everything? I don't think there is anything wrong with it. I dig a thrift store now and then myself. But I'm just surprised that they don't have company after company offering freebies for them to pimp on their TV show. Gosh, the Gosselins got all kinds of stuff each year on their show. And the Duggars have been on TV for years now. They are on the Today Show just about every other week talking about a new pregnancy. No shops or baby gear companies sent them presents? Heck, I've seen bloggers get goodies just for posting a review on the blog. But on their show this week they went shopping for everything baby related at that giant thrift sale thingy.

Also, does anyone else ever wonder if the D family and the G family trash talk each other off camera? Or is that just me?


Thursday, October 15, 2009

Another Pork Crockpot Recipe


Sorry for the lame title. It is what it is. And it is delish! Are some of y'all still not using your crockpots? Why oh why? I was talking to some gals at JL the other night and they said they were scared to leave it on all day. My best friend, Florida, said the same thing to me. Ladies, that is the point. You dump a bunch of raw food in the pot. Turn it on. And walk your tushy out the door. Like Ron Popeil's "set it and forget it!" My crockpot (that I bought years ago on sale at a big box store- it is not at all fancy) lets me set it for 4 or 6 hours on high or 8 or 10 hours on low. After that time period is up, it automatically goes to warm. You know, to keep your hard work warm. You can cook just about anything in a crockpot. Super ideal if you are a working mom. Dinner is ready when you walk in the door with the kiddos at night!

So that being said, I made another crazy delish and super easy recipe last night.


Ingredients:
* pork loin
* 2 large sweet potatoes, chopped in large chunks
* 1 med-large yellow onion, sliced
* 1 teaspoon minced garlic (or 2 fresh cloves minced)
* 1/2 jar of my pineapple jam
* salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
Half the veggies go in the bottom of the pot. Then the pork. Salt and pepper it up. I try to be generous with seasoning. Add remaining veggies. Add garlic. Add jam. Lid on. Set it for 6 hours on high or 8 on low.


Like all things crockpot, you can put your own twist on this recipe. My grocery store happened to have pork loins BOGO last week so that's what I used. But you could use any inexpensive cut of mean- butt, shoulder, whateversonsale. Don't like sweet potatoes? Why? No, just kidding. use anything you like. Don't have six jars of pineapple jam in your pantry? Use anything. Wine jelly, pepper jelly, apricot preserves, ginger preserves, whateversonsale. It's completely flexible. If I wasn't serving my father tonight, I might have tossed in some red pepper flakes to give it a little zip too.

I served this with sweet peas and mushrooms and a fresh loaf of cranberry hazelnut bread. Mmmmm good!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Fried Green Tomatoes



Well, the frost is officially here. Lucky us in the North Pole get to have a "much colder than normal" fall. Special. Because I really enjoyed it when we had a "much colder than normal" summer. Actually, if you recall, it was our coldest July ever on recorded history. Ever! Bitter party of one right here. So my tomatoes that took forevah to grow, now have to shut down shop. My largest harvest ever. Of green t'maters. Sad. I love me a fried green tomato but what the heck am I supposed to do with this many green tomatoes? If you have a recipe using green 'maters that is not fried, gimme gimme please! I am hoping a few do get ripe on the ledge in front of the kitchen window. That gets sunshine most of the day. When its sunny, that is.

Chai-like



I love LOVE chai tea. Good chai- not the icky sweet junk they serve at Starbucks. Bleck! So this is not exactly the best chai ever. But it is a low-fat, low-cal, low-sugar alternative to make at home when you are freezing because it "feels like November" when it is only the start of October. But I digress... Steep one of these decaf bags for several minutes in a cup of hot water. Then add two teaspoons of the pumpkin spice creamer. Listen, outside of chai, I think cream in tea is gag-worthy. But it really gives is a bit of sweetness and spice without being crazy over the top. An excellent bedtime treat!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Friends Meet

Tonight turned out to be a delightful surprise! I was tired and chilly and thinking of skipping out on my Junior League General Membership Meeting. But as I had to miss the GMM last month, I pulled on my big girl panties and walked out the door. I'm standing around the food (no surprise there!) chatting with some Provisional members when the Provisional Advisor began doing a few introductions. And who did she welcome to her first meeting? All American Belle! We've emailed several times but never before met. I knew she was thinking about joining the League but I never followed up with her. Actually made myself a note today to email her this week. I was elated to finally meet her in person. She is such a doll and so beautiful. I'm tickled pink to have finally met the only other Cap Region preppy blogger (that I know of anyway.....if there are more of y'all, please come on out of that pink and green closet!). It was actually a pretty boring meeting but I didn't care because I was finally meeting my darling bloggy pal. Yeah! She is the very first blogger I have met in person. I've been "outed" before but never met a fellow blogger. Now I just need to get up to meet my cookie pal Laura and I will be all set.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Lilly On Sale



For those up near me, Five Seasons in Manchester, VT (as well as the store in NJ) is having a sale this weekend. What could be better than Lilly on sale? I have a coupon for 15% off your entire purchase that I am happy to forward to you if interested. Just send me an email and I can get it off to you ASAP.











Monday, October 5, 2009

GG

How long is Jenny going to remain punk and vamp? I don't like it. She scares me.

Monster Monday

One night at dinner when I was in the fourth grade, Satan grabbed a butcher's knife and forced it into my hand. With both of his hands over mine, he forced me to put the knife right up to my mother's neck. Never actually touching her, but thisclose. He was screaming at me that I was slowly killing my mother. That this (slitting her throat) was what I had done that day.

Want to take a guess as to what I did that day?

I had to go to court (again....my parents were always in court....and so was I) and talk to the judge. The judge asked me if I loved my parents. And I said....wait for it....wait for it....that I loved my parents equally. Yup, loving them equally was what created that knife incident. That incident, by the way, lasted for hours and in the end Satan put his fist through a wall.

When I was little, elementary school age, Satan would get me out of bed at all hours of the night. He would force me to sit in a chair so we were knee to knee. Then he would ask me over and over and over to tell him who I loved more, my mother or my father. I would always answer that I loved them equal. Which made these sessions last for hours. At like midnight on a school night when I was in the second-sixth grades. He would frequently ask me who I would save if I could only save one parent, who I would feed if I could only feed one parent, and the like. It was tortuous. My mother never once came in the room to save me. I know she was threatened too. But as an adult I no longer make excuses for her. It was her job to protect me and instead she allowed this to take place.


Many have emailed and commented that they hope my mother left Satan. She is still with him. Still making excuses for him. I have not had a relationship with her since I was 16. And I have not spoken to her in nearly a decade. Though they do go through phases of stalking me. Usually in late winter/early spring. Many people are very unsympathetic towards me cutting her out of my life. But she refuses to be part of my life without him. Flat. Out. Refuses. And while I might not be this fabulous person, I am confident enough to know that I am better without that horrible in my life. I have no regrets about standing up for myself. No regrets at all. It breaks my heart and brings me to tears monthly to think that I will likely never again see her. But she has made her choice. She chose him. Said over and over that she would never chose me over him. And she was right. She never did.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Congrats Brasil!

I'm bummed that the Olympics won't be coming to the USA again. I was hopeful for Chicago. And glad that President Obama went in person, like the other three countries in contention. I don't understand why Oprah went though. I mean, of course it makes sense for our national leader to go, but Oprah? Is she really that big of a deal outside of the US? Maybe she is and I don't realize it. But it struck me as odd. Whatever, we didn't win the bid. I don't like to think of it as losing though. I mean, it made perfect sense that Rio should get a turn. Not only a first for the country, but also a first for the continent of South America. We've had the Olympics twice just recently in Atlanta and Salt Lake. We can't be that greedy. I am bummed though and would love to see the Olympics on my country's soil again in the near future. But I am so excited for Brasil. They very much deserve this opportunity!

Did I tell you that I lived in Brasil? I studied abroad there one summer in high school. It was a truly amazing experience that I would recommend to any young student. It really opened my eyes to the world on that trip. My little self realized that we are so incredibly blessed to live in a country with so many luxuries. So many opportunities. Such a stable middle class. I also developed a passion for all things passion fruit. We went to school in late afternoon and evenings (elementary went in the mornings) and after school we would get these most amazing passion fruit ice cream treats from an ice cream trucks. I didn't live in Rio de Janerio but was able to visit there for a long weekend. Fabulous! I'd love to make the Olympics my excuse to go back and visit some old friends!

Oh Puh-leez!




Listen, I don't really think the Gosselin kids should still be on TV. But then again, I've seen nearly every episode. And since like season two, they are clearly very staged. It's not like they live with cameras 24/7. But I don't believe you for a skinny second, Jon Gosselin, that you didn't know you were getting the boot from TLC. I mean, I knew and I never even read gossip blogs. So if I knew, you had to know. You act like a big ass all the time now. And while I agree that Kate was not often nice to you, no one has more sympathy for you when you babble on about being emotionally abused. You were equally un-nice to her. You don't want your kids on the show out of spite. Not genuine concern. And that bugs the crap out of me. You knew you were getting the boot but will still be kept on a leash (therefor unable to go do that Divorced Dads show with sleezy Michael Lohan), and are acting out like the toddler that you are. That fakey fakey concern is just so gross.


I watched your interview with Larry King last night. You just look like a big jerk and so incredibly insincere. Also, Kate clearly has the far better legal representation. If your attorney said one more time, in response to Larry asking if you were going to court on this matter, that y'all were already in court, the court of public opinion, I might gag. I don't think Kate and I would be friends but I hope she gets custody. You're cheatin' ass needs to get a reality check.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Four Catalogs And The Internet

Yesterday, four fall catalogs appeared in my mail box. Yeah! I LOVE catalogs! They are a highly desired form of entertainment to me. Like window shopping in my bed, under my covers, with a big mug of hot buttered rum. So better than window shopping when you think about it. When I find a new catalog, be it clothing or housewares or linens or gifts, I'm crazy excited. Actually, if y'all know of any new companies that might be fun, please let me know. I'm always on the look-out.

So in no particular order, here's what I found last night. Some items are dreamy and some are plain practical. Some I would never order (Because JCrew makes every top for the next two seasons out of wool. And I'm allergic. And annoyed. So for me, wool is purely window shopping.) and some I might just order this weekend.


From JCrew...















From Talbots...









From L.L. Bean...










I love this sweater. It will be mine. Mark my words.














Super duper adorable items from Chasing Fireflies.









Lisagh, if you think you might be able to squeeze into a 24mos outfit, you could match your pal Monkey!! Don't tell me you're not thinking about it!










I want a daughter just so that I can order her this coat. That she probably wouldn't like but I would be a mean momma and force her to wear because I secretly want one myself.






These are pillows that I just might use as inspiration for a little home project at some point.



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