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QOTD: Pepe Le Pew & Anais Nin

May 31st, 2010

i just spent an hour on the floor of my closet re-reading old journals because some of you must go, okay? I just don’t know which ones.

These are the times when I find being a writer to be just… miserable. Writing = more navel-gazing and misery.

What did I find? A whole lot of nothing. I’m telling you. A lot of ranting about what a witch my boss was (she really was. whenever I stayed home sick she would call me mid-day to whimper in my ear, ask me where things were on her desk, and to tell me to come to work), a few sexy descriptions (which are now shredded — nothing I’d want to lift for fiction, just some random sexiness) (no, my kids don’t need to read that crap, after I’m gone) (note to self: stop writing about sex), and speaking of… pages and pages devoted to how it really was going to work out with Mr. Wrong this time, I mean it, Diary! etc. And two good quotes (neither of them from me, shocker I know):

“I pierce you with the ack-ack of love, flowerpot.” — Pepe Le Pew
(from the cartoon “Two Scent’s Worth — 1955)

and…

“I wept because I have lost my pain and am not yet accustomed to its absence. …” — Anais Nin

OK, the hour was worth it.

i’m not in Europe…

May 30th, 2010

…but my buddy from high school is! Hi, Chris!

He and his wife do a nice job with the podcasting, go check it out.

– wm

notes to my dad

May 29th, 2010

i read this book once, a great book, and I read so much of course I can’t remember the title, but I know it will turn up again eventually (I seem to have lost a couple of boxes of books, in the move) and then…….. haHA! See? People think my rambling is just so much… rambling… but no. It has a purpose. And that purpose is: I just remembered the name of the book. “Hope Floats”? Nope. That was the book they made into a movie with what’s-her-name and I wasn’t into the book, or the movie. The title is:

“Sorrow Floats,” by Tim Sandlin

From Publishers Weekly: Able storytelling and an engaging cast of dysfunctional modern American pilgrims animate this winning tale of the road. When tipsy, 23-year-old Maurey Pierce Talbot accidentally drives through her Wyoming town with her baby on the roof of her car, she realizes just how far she has sunk since her father’s death left her distraught and almost unhinged. (She writes him daily picture postcards, knowing full well he is gone but unable to come to terms with her loss.) After attempting suicide and being thrown out by her philandering husband, she meets Lloyd and Shane, two recovering alcoholics who have devised a scheme to smuggle Coors beer to the East Coast. Longing to be reunited with her eight-year-old daughter Shannon in North Carolina (Sandlin chronicled Shannon’s birth in Skipped Parts), Maurey decamps on an unlikely odyssey, pulling a horse trailer full of beer behind a broken-down old ambulance, sipping Yukon Jack from the bottle as her companions search for AA meetings. Maurey is not yet ready to deal with her alcoholism or her reluctance to be loved, but the hardships of the road and the bonds that unite this group of refugees (others join them along the way) will change that. Maurey’s wry, cocksure voice evokes both her cowgirl roots and the novel’s ’70s setting. Despite the bickering, sarcasm, cynicism and personal tragedy that season the lives of his colorful, credible characters, Sandlin fashions a convincing tale of redemption.

She writes postcards to her dead dad. I’m telling you — I read that and I thought, that is one helluva good and crazy idea. I keep meaning to do it, but it will have to be just the right postcard. And no, I’m not going to do like Steve’s ex-girlfriend and write teeny-tiny in order to fit more writing on them. (I was snooping through his stuff cleaning our room once and found a card from her. I tried to read it, in case there was anything sexy written on it? Oh, please, like you’ve never done that, gimme a break.

But the writing was so teeeeeeeeeeny and cramped that I couldn’t even read it. When Steve finally came in the room I was all, What the hell?!?? and threw the card at him.

“I can’t even read this, dude!”

Like it was his fault she didn’t know how to write on stationery and stuff it in an envelope instead of going the postcard route.

I guess I wouldn’t need to put stamps on them, if I started mailing my dad cards. Anyway, it does sound cathartic to me. And a little weird, but who cares?

In honor of Memorial Day weekend, my dad’s birthday, and… the weather… I give you three re-runs. Cuz apparently I don’t need to write the guy postcards when I can just write posts for him on Thee Blog. I should call it, Notes to My Dead Dad instead of Wacky Mommy, in all honesty.

this one

and

that one

and…

the best one.

peace.

– wm

it’s a different world…

May 29th, 2010

i’d forgotten what it was like living with a musician, Steve has been into the politics and out of music for so long. however, the main reason for our getting the hell out of Portland was so we could say buh-bye to the politics and, “Hey, you! You still love me? Sorry I’ve been ignoring you” to writing, reading and music.

yes, we moved to the suburbs so we could get back to being artists. The Only 2 People in the History of the World to pull that one. People, it’s working. The kids have friends over all the time, or they’re at their friends’ houses. There are parks, schools and empty lots within walking distance. They both are into taekwondo (i read while they kick and yowl). I have never spent so little time with my children in… almost 12 years.

Steve’s got the music studio set up now, it’s pretty cool. and i say this as someone who has nary a musical bone in her body. i like to sing, but I don’t think anyone else enjoys it as much as I do. when i sing with my students, I get them started and they take over on “Chicka-Chicka Boom-Boom,” “Down By the Bay” or whatever else ties in with the book we’re reading for story time. (We mainly sing variations on “The Itsy-Bitsy Spider,” ie — “The Big Fat Spider,” where you clap your hands and make your voice go deep, and the “teensy-weensy spider,” where you make your voice as tiny and squeaky as possible. No, the 7th and 8th graders won’t sing with me. Come to think of it, they won’t do story time, either. Why???)

So when I heard car brakes screeching (no the boys didn’t get run over, they were on the sidewalk, allegedly), when the girls were slamming the door in the neighbor’s face (sweet. sweet, sweet girls. I made them take over brownies and apologize) and when I heard, “ewwwwww you can see the dead snake from the front window” (in the front flower bed, where Steve left him. next to the dead salamander. neighbor’s cattle dog is a good little hunter)…

i’m thinking, Steve? Where the hell…?

Oh. In his studio. Headphones on.

Guys are so smart.

he’s kinda cute, huh?

May 28th, 2010

OK, i gotta go, Friday Night Lights is on.

– wm

Thursday Night Recipe Club: Greens, Quiche, Smashed Carrots & Fruit Salad (plus Swiss Chard & Garbonzo Bean Soup AND White House No-Cream Creamed Spinach)

May 27th, 2010

It’s like Food-a-Palooza night over here. Why? WE SPEND TOO MUCH $$$ ON PIZZA AROUND HERE, that’s why. (Sorry, had to make that cappy.) The pizza has become An Issue since there’s a really good Papa Murphy’s by us (no lie, it is deliciously fresh and cheap) and there’s a Pizzicato a few minutes away and damn. They make a good Caesar salad. That, a bottle of vino, a cheese pizza for the kids, a Puttanesca pizza for us, and what the hell, throw in dessert, too, and next thing you know, you’ve got no disposable income left.

But it’s spring — we have all these lovely vegetables available, and even though the cupboards and fridge were half-empty, that was not going to stop me, oh no.

(I have to edit this real quick, on Saturday afternoon, to encourage you to go buy some hot sauce from our brand-new friends at Hot Sauce Planet. Jason stopped by, saw the recipe for greens with hot sauce, and is giving us a deal through June 30th, 2010. The code is… wait for it… WACKY.) (Now is as good a time as any to introduce, or reintroduce, you to A Slight Disclaimer.) (Yes, I’m hoping Jason sends me some hot sauce samples, what are ya, nuts? Of course I want some hot sauce.)

So tonight I cooked. I do know how to cook, for your information, I just don’t like to. For a variety of reasons. It cuts into my sleeping/reading/nooky/hot tubbing/Food Network time, for starters. And breaking up fights between the young’uns. Who has time to cook when the kids (hamsters, cats) are fighting so g.d. much? It’s exhausting, really it is. And why cook when there’s all this clean, fluffy laundry I could fold, instead? No, seriously. I do like to cook (as long as it’s nachos. Or bean dip. Or cheese dip. Or a bowl of pretzels with a couple of beers on the side, I can cook the hell out of that), but… excuses. And wishes. Wishes for more time, fewer trips to the store, more trips to the farmers market…

“If wishes were horses/beggars would ride.” — anon. (English Language Proverb and nursery rhyme)

Hey, wooooooooot! You want to read an old funny post? It’s apropos of… how I feel today.

So this afternoon, my commute was fast, I was in a great mood (thank you, thank you, Zoot, for the burst of optimism — it was catchy!), I got started early, the kids didn’t fight (that much) and… next thing you know:

* I whipped up some homemade quiche with mozzarella, eggs, milk, peas, and black olives. (Key: beat the eggs into fluffy fluffy foam.) (And had I remembered there were fresh peas in the fridge from the market, hello, I wouldn’t have used frozen, duh.)

* Put that in the oven to bake, went to work out on the treadmill and watch General Hospital. I’m no cougar, but for Dante/Dominic? I could come around.

* Took quiche out of oven to cool and set. Paused to pour a glass of wine. (A-Z Pinot Grigio, and I’m too lazy to run downstairs and see whose label it is. But if you’re looking for a good summer cocktail recipe, check Steve’s blog.)

* Started a variation of Steve’s Greens n Spuds recipe. (Got inspired by this recipe, too; left out the spuds; added a bunch of hot sauce; and compromised between cooking them Stevie Style and Dear Granny Style. His: cook them just long enough. Hers: start them on Thursday they’ll be done next Tuesday or so. I added garbanzo beans and shallots from the market, nice. Also some packets of random spices and hot oils, from the cupboard. I have no idea what they were, but they worked.

* Made a fruit salad with fresh, sliced strawberries, frozen blueberries (they defrosted quickly), a couple of spoonfuls of sugar and a can of crushed pineapple that I found when I was looking for salsa to make nachos, last night. (Wait… that’s why we ended up getting pizza. There were no nachos for the nachos, basically.)

But wait, there’s more…

* Cooked baby carrots that I mashed with orange juice, honey, butter, salt and pepper. Sooooooo good.

I lit some candles (??? seriously) and told the kids, No taekwondo, kids, we’re taking the night off (“Awwwwwwwww!!!” they love to kick things, it’s the perfect sport for them.) Then Hockey God got stuck in traffic, which, y’know. Drag for him, but bought me more time.

That’s right — I took a shower. Since I’d had the major work-out and all. (me 2 kids: I’m working out, you’re not, sorry!)

Excellent dinner, we’re all happy. (Did the children eat any of that healthy, colorful and fantastic food, you ask? Wacky Girl took small bites, to be polite. Wacky Boy refused it all. It involved vegetables. And fruit. He doesn’t eat vegetables or fruit, see? Except french fries and ketchup. So he’s going to raid the cupboard for cereal later is my guess.) (If I never see a purple box of Annie’s mac n cheez again I would say, About frickin’ time.)

On another side note: The kids now have GarageBand and PhotoBooth which I don’t fully understand WTF those are, but they’re rocking out.

HAPPY LONG WEEKEND, Y’ALL. (If you get one. If you don’t — I’m sorry. Er, happy Thursday night? Party on, dudes.)

xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

your friend,

wm

Here, I’d better just include those other recipes, since who knows if the links will go dead later:

Swiss Chard and Garbanzo Bean Soup

Makes 8 servings

This soup is super easy to make because you only have to chop one vegetable — the onion — which allows you to put it together in less than an hour. Serve with baguette slices and a green salad to round out the meal.

Ingredients

* 2 tablespoons olive oil
* 1 tablespoon nonhydrogenated margarine
* 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
* 4 cloves garlic, pressed through a garlic press
* 1 bunch (approximately 1 pound) Swiss chard, washed and torn into bite-sized pieces
* 4 cups (24 ounces) chopped canned tomatoes
* 1 to 2 teaspoons chili sauce, such as sriracha or Frank’s Red Hot
* 1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
* 2 cups vegetable broth
* Soy sour cream substitute for garnish

Instructions

In a large soup pot over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil and margarine until they melt together. Add the onion and garlic. Sauté, stirring frequently, until the onion turns translucent, about 10 minutes.

Add the chard to the pot. The leaves should come almost to the top of the pot but will shrink when they cook. Cook until greens begin to wilt, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, chili sauce and garbanzo beans. Cook, stirring frequently, for 2 to 3 minutes more.

Add the broth and bring soup to a boil; lower the heat to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes. Serve, garnishing each serving with a couple of teaspoon-sized dollops of soy sour cream substitute.

Adapted from Blue Earth Farms, Chehalis, Wash.

And this Creamed Spinach recipe sounds really nice:

White House No-Cream Creamed Spinach

Makes 6 servings

This side dish is one of Michelle Obama’s favorites because it has a creamy texture without a lot of calories and fat. One person who’s not a fan, however, is Sasha Obama, who is turned off by the bright green color — a shade of the vegetable rainbow she has yet to embrace.

Ingredients

* 2 pounds baby spinach
* 2 tablespoons olive oil
* 4 shallots, minced
* 2 cloves garlic, minced
* Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

Wash and clean the spinach. Place a large bowl of water near the sink, and put several handfuls of ice cubes in it. Place a colander in the sink.

Fill a medium-sized pot with water, and sprinkle in some salt. Place the pot on the stove and bring to a boil over high heat. Carefully add 8 ounces of the spinach (about a quarter of the leaves) and let it boil for just 30 seconds.

Carefully pour the spinach and water into the colander to drain the spinach. Then, using tongs or a fork to handle the hot spinach, immediately “shock” the spinach by putting it into the ice water to stop the cooking process. Let the spinach sit in the cold water for a minute, then drain it again in the colander. Squeeze the spinach with your hands or press the spinach against the colander with the back of a spoon to remove excess water.

Place the cooked spinach in a blender and purée. Set aside.

In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the oil. Add shallots and garlic and cook until the shallots turn translucent, 3 to 4 minutes.

Add the rest of the spinach leaves, tossing with a spoon and sautéing until the leaves are wilted. Add the puréed spinach and stir. Season with salt and pepper.

Adapted from White House Executive Chef Cristeta Comerford

i love this so much

May 27th, 2010

this one just made me happy Wacky Mommy.

both kids are now in taekwondo

May 26th, 2010

they rock taekwondo, my kids.

damn facebook, i can’t remember how to blog.

– wm

grrrrrrrrrrrrrr…

May 25th, 2010

that’s all.

– wm

steve, i love you.

May 21st, 2010

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