Here on the frontier, There are falling leaves, Although my neighbors are all barbarions…And you? You are a thousand miles away. There are always two cups on my table.

Archive for the ‘dance’ Category

Broccoli Souffle and Rose Gone Wild

Spotlight on Talent!

This is Rose.

She is my right hand in the kitchen.

She is in college and works full-time too.

She is tired.

Because of this, Rose is often the source of much fall on the floor, cry your eyes out, laugh so you can’t hardly breathe hilarity.

Rose is making broccoli souffle.

_ 20 ounces cooked and mashed broccoli

_3 eggs

_1/2 cup mayonnaise

_1/2 cup milk or soy milk

_1 1/2 tablespoon flour

_! 1/2 tablespoon butter or margarine

_2 tablespoons onion soup mix

_ 1 cup crushed corn flake crumbs

Mix all ingredients except for cornflake crumbs.

Rose always looks like she just stepped off the set of “Rent“.

Sprinkle half of the cornflake crumbs on the bottom of an 8X8 inch baking pan.

Put the broccoli mixture into the pan and then sprinkle the remaining cornflake crumbs on top.

Bake the souffle at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes.

Enjoy!

This is gmom signing off with Rose clowning around.

Thank you Rose.

Take your bow now.

Close the door when you go out.

Maybe there won’t be marriage, maybe there won’t be sex, but by God there will be dancing!

What a great line from “My best friend’s wedding.”

Has life got you down?

Are you waiting and hoping for better days?

You think you’ve got it hard?

Where is your soulmate?

Why is your family so freakin’ dysfunctional?

Are holidays more like “Fight Club” then a joyous gathering of friends and family?

Where are those children you have been dreaming about for years or worse still why does your ex have them half of the day?

That lump in your breast that needs checking, is it cancer?

That bill you can’t pay this month or next?

The relationship you realize was never going to work to begin with?

The woman you can never do enough for to please?

You are a writer, an artist, a person bursting with creativity,

will  the world never see???

Are you dropping on your knees these days and wondering… why am I here at all?

You are not alone.

There is an old parable friends, and I do mean friends, because when I write this blog I know those of you who are reading it are just regular people like me.

Just doing the best you can in your life.

Anyway..old parable…

God heard the world crying over their hard lives.

All their myriad of problems.

He said,”Okay folks, here is the deal, everyone pack up all your cares and woes into big Hefty garbage bags and take them to the big football stadium at the edge of the city.

Then put those bags in the field, just pile them up there.”

Everyone did as the Lord said and sat on the bleachers looking at the mountain of their problems in life.

“Okay,”said the Lord,”Now everyone can choose any bag they want to take home with them and leave your own problems for someone else to take.”

Well what do you suppose the people did?

Everyone ran down to field and grabbed their own bag to take back home!

You never know what the next person is dealing with in life and your own problems and cares in life are tailor made for you.

Pick up your bag and take one step at a time.

And if it feels to heavy,

let God help you carry it.

There’s a good lesson here.

Now me,

believe me there is plenty I don’t blog about,

problems like we all have,

I  keep in my own four walls.

 I’ll be damned if they get the best of me.

So things might be tough,

life not easy,

but turn the music on anyway,

and dance.

For your own self,

if for no other reason,

dance!

…and as my mother used to say…

“Let the world spin itself today.”

Baked Butternut Squash Recipe(Thanksgiving)

The tools to attack the butternut squash.

The big day is coming and cooking ahead makes life so much easier!

The Chef may or may not be frying the turkey ’cause it looks like rain here in B’more.

I may just slow roast it.

But I love nothing better than to sit with the kids and watch the Macy’s Day parade on TV, and then (I know this is so lame…) the International Dog Show.

I’m probably the only person without a competitor watching.

But me and Cujo we just loves it!

So I don’t want to be in kitchen the whole day.

I want my chocolate spoon in my good Ghiardelli hot cocoa and some french toast.

Maybe some caramel popcorn during the day.

But to get that free time and still have a meal for 15 people come late afternoon I have to cook today (and yesterday).

This side dish of baked butternut squash is another seasonal good one that goes nicely with the traditional foods of Thanksgiving.

Just be careful when you are cutting this hard squash up you don’t cut yourself.

You can soften it first by cooking it in the microwave for a few minutes first then proceeding with the recipe.

If you do that be sure to pierce the squash deeply so if pressure builds inside it doesn’t explode all over the place.

Directions:

Peel the butternut squash and cut it into cubes.

After the squash is peeled cut it into cubes. There will be seeds in a center pocket that you can discard.

Dice up 1/2 cup of an onion.

Put the butternut squash into a baking dish.

Toss with 1/2 cup of oil.

Put the onion over the squash pieces and sprinkle on salt, pepper and a teaspoon of sugar.

The squah and onions seasoned and ready to bake.

Cover tightly with aluminum foil.

Into the oven you go covered snugly with aluminum foil

Bake at 350 for 40 minutes.

Take foil off and continue baking until squash is fork tender, about 15 minutes.

If you are making this dish ahead of time don’t do the last 15 minutes of bake time.

When you reheat the dish on Thursday prior to the meal you will finish off the baking then.

That’s it another yum dish to serve on your Thanksgiving table.

The finished dish after baking uncovered the last 15 minutes will have browned edges and be so yummy.

Enjoy WP friends.

Happy Thanksgiving!

From gmom and Hoo and Cujo the dog.

Natural Childbirth: Hypnobirthing (Mom 2.0)

At the tail end of middle age,

here I am.

My eldest child, just now expecting her first child.

I am a grandmom twice.

This child having her own will complete a circle that I have waited for quite sometime.

My girl China, who made me into a mother.

Seeing her now take the place as mother to her own,

now that’s something special.

I will attend her at birth as I have with the other daugher and daughter-in-law,

and have done with hundreds of other babies over the past 18 years or so as a doula.

I have attended hypnobirths, Bradley births, c-sections, stillbirths and of course medicated births.

In hospital, at home and at birthing centers.

I have given birth 6 times myself plus one stillbaby born too soon.

All unmedicated births.

The last 3 using hypnotherapy.

I won’t claim to be an authority but I have a bit of experience under my belt,

so to speak.

China, invited me to her hypnobirth class.

I agreed.

A few couples sat in a semi darkened room with a candle lit.

The instructor sat cross-legged on a footstool with a pashmina across her shoulders like a prayer shawl,

and her hair hanging loose to her mid back,

a good look when you are 30.

Not so much at 55.

She proceeded to speak on birth without pain of any kind.

The contractions as “surges” and pushing as “so yesterday”.

Now as I mentioned I am all for Hypnobirthing.

I think it’s extremely helpful in attaining a natural childbirth if that’s the woman’s wish.

I held my tongue as she led the women through the “full dilation” (or pushing stage of labor) breathing.

“Ladies”, she quietly sang, “You gently breathe in, and breathe out,there is no drama of pushing ,or people coaching you to push your baby out, your baby comes out all on its own with no more effort than your gentle breath.”

Okay, I was done holding my tongue.

I can tolerate varying opinions and means to an end in getting babies born, but telling a group of first time expectant mothers that they won’t have to push their babies out, and that the experience will be pain-free is just plain horsepee.

It will be a sad day for these women when their babies descend low into their pelvis towards birth.

The time when the tendons stretch, and tissues, (it doesn’t matter if you massage in a gallon of evening primrose oil) stretch and often tear with the scope of the coming skull.

I’m not talking perineum here I mean the vaginal canal.

Never mind the “Ring of fire” (straight from a hypnobirth training manual to describe when the head emerges from mom’s body).

“Ring of Fire”

Hello!!!

It’s not called that for nothing!

Hypnobirthing can absolutely get a woman through labor and delivery with much “less pain” then just muscling through the contractions.

But pain-free it ain’t.

“Madam”, I said,”I have attended hundreds of births of all kinds and the disservice you are doing to this group of women appalls me.
Never in all my experience has even the most calm,the most ‘in control’ woman who has used hypnobirth didn’t say post-birth that it was the hardest thing she had ever done.”

I felt my daughter’s hand on my arm.

I was embarrassing her in front of her teacher and classmates.

“With all due respect”,I finished.

We left the class into the cold of the Silver Spring night.

I apologized to China who walked arm-in-arm with her husband.

“I couldn’t abide seeing you lied to,” I said,” Having a baby is going to be the greatest day of your life, a day you never forget, I won’t have someone build you up ridiculous expectations that may leave you feeling afterward like your body failed you.
That if you do end up choosing to take an epidural you will have failed at childbirth.
You are going to have 18 years to raise this child.
This is only one day in your life. Whether she comes natural, by epidural or section she is going to be the same baby. ”

“The truth is giving birth hurts.”

There I said it.

Yogurt Recipe!

When you feed a big family you cut corners where you can.

When you have a bunch that eats strictly organic it’s even more of a challenge to keep the food costs low.

Making your own yogurt is no more expensive than the milk it costs to make it.

It tastes great, can be mixed with honey or agave and fruit.

Hubby eats it everyday mixed with a drop of vanilla.

low-fat milk makes a firmer yogurt.

Higher fat milk makes a creamier yogurt.

The only kitchen tool you will need is a cooking thermometer.

Now eat like Hoo does and make yourself some healthy yogurt!

This is gmom and Hoo, and even Cujo coming to you from chilly B’more.

The leaves are fallin’ here.

It’s beautiful.

Be safe out there.

Heat up milk to 185 degree F. This is just to the point when milk starts to froth. You have to stir it constantly to make sure it doesn't scorch. Some people use a double boiler to avoid burning the milk but if you keep stirring you won't have a problem!

Heat milk to 185 F being careful not to burn it. Stir often and watch carefully.

Let milk cool down to 115 F before adding your starter yogurt.

Once the milk has cooled to 115 F stir in 2 tablespoons of plain yogurt containing active yogurt cultures.

Pour cooled milk now infused with active yogurt cultures into clean containers.

Hoo is helping to put the heating pad into the bottom of the cooler and covering that with a dishtowel. Hoo loves his organic homemade yogurt!

Put your covered yugurt into the cooler to set on top of a heating pad set on low. The yogurt must be kept warm at a temperature at about 110 F.

Once the yogurt containers are in the cooler turn the heating pad on low. It will take 7 hours for the yogurt to culture and set.

Leave the yogurt to set for at least 7 hours. It will be custard like. The longer you leave it beyond 7 hours the more tangy it becomes. You may notice a slightly greenish fluid on top. That's normal and safe. You can pour it off or stir it into your yogurt before eating.

In The Morning My House Looks Like The Bar Scene From Star Wars. (Recipe For Breakfast Bars)

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It’s 3 a.m.

I hear the front door open and close.

Work boots pass over head.

Then a chair scrapes the floor.

Bart‘s home.

He stocking foots it to the laundry room where he strips off his oily work clothes.

I hear the shower go on….off.

He heads to bed for a few brief hours of sleep,  with the tv on.

I slip back into a semi-sleep until Hoo wakes at 6.

I hear Hoo’s bottle hit the floor around 6:30.

The signal he is up and ready for company.

This morning the kitchen looks like the bar scene from “Star Wars”.

It’s a busy day in the biofuel business.

Everyone is on deck.

The center of the constellation is the bossman.

My husband.

The most interesting, constantly evolving  person I know.

He drinks a coffee and nurses a morning headache but always keeps an upbeat attitude.

He sits in the dining room and reads the Wall Street Journal.

Bart rolls out of bed bare-chested in pajama pants and heads for the coffee.

He’s eats a big breakfast.

Eggs and steak or 3 grill cheeses.

Jonesy  knocks at the door ever polite, our fix it man, only 22 like Bart.

All smiles,

happy to make it for breakfast.

He eats whatever I put in front of him.

Genady, the Russian worker is smoking outside.

He never comes in the house.

I’ve stopped trying to get him to come in and instead let Bart take food out to him.

I wave and say “Morning” to him but all he says with his big smile is,

“Nice day,nice day”.

10 years in America and still no speakee English, yeah right!

Edward Norton‘s diatribe from “25th Hour” passes through my head when I see Genady and I wonder if he’s done time and that’s why he won’t come inside.

The last of the motley crew is Aldy, young and shy, and always stinking of trap grease.

I question Bart,

“Are you pouring oil over his head? How is he getting so filthy?”

“Aldy go change your clothes and take a shower man!”

He does and comes back with his thick hair slicked back.

Much better.

We are cornering the market on Tide and Oxyclean.

So another day begins as they all pile out to the trucks.

Genady and Bart lingering over coffee and a cigarette by their truck.

Waving to Hoo who stands by the screen door waving and calling to them.

I pick him up.

Come on big boy.

Time to get dressed.

These breakfast bars although not healthy enough to replace a well-balanced breakfast are good enough in a pinch or for those who won’t eat breakfast.

They make a great mid-morning snack too.

As you adjust the recipe to suit your own tastes just be aware that the recipe does not do well with flax or flax-seed or with drier cereals like chex.

Have a great week WP kids.

Be safe out there.

If you see an oil truck on the B’more streets be kind to them.

They are my boys!

Breakfast Bars

————————-

2 cups brown sugar  

1 cup peanut butter

1 cup butter

1/2 cup water

2 tablespoons vanilla extract

2 eggs

2 and 1/4 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1 and 1/2 cup rolled oats

1 and 1/2 cup raisins

1 cup chocolate chips

6 cups Honey Nut Cheerios

1.Preheat oven to 375 F

2. In a large bowl mix the sugar, peanut butter, water, vanilla, and eggs.

Combine the flour, baking soda and salt.

Mix into the batter.

Mix in oats, raisins, chocolate chips.

Bars unbaked by the 1/2 to 3/4 cupfuls on the bake sheet

Carefully stir in the cereal.

Drop 1/2 cupfuls of batter onto ungreased cookie sheet leaving space between bars.

3. Bake for 12-14 minutes until bars are browned at edges.

Let cool completely on cookie sheet before moving to storage bags.

Terrific Breakfast Bars with Coffee

This is gmom, Cujo and family,

Peace out.

 

Cujo not allowed in the kitchen with so many people underfoot

What ‘dat??? What ‘dat???

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We are driven to distraction with,

Her endless toddling question,

“What ‘dat???,what ‘dat???”

“What ‘dat??? What ‘dat???”

It’s a ball.
It’s your bike.
It’s the garbage.
It’s your hairbrush….
It’s,it’s,it’s…

“What ‘dat??? What ‘dat???”

Oh Starlite, little sweet girl,
I can hear Rose teaching you to say,
“What the hell ‘dat???”

I have to agree,
the question in any other format
would be welcome at this point.

“What ‘dat??? What ‘dat???”

It’s your boppy.
It’s Daddy.
It’s your carseat.
It’s Cujo.

“What ‘dat??? What ‘dat???”

It’s your shoes.
It’s a kitty.
It’s the sky.
Airplane.
Bird.
Atmosphere.
Outerlimits….

Does it matter???

“What ‘dat??? What ‘dat???”

It’s a mirror.
Starlite,
see?

There is Starlite!

That’s you!
In the mirror,
that’s Star!

Holy cow!

The girl is quiet for one blessed second.

She turns and twists,
tilts her pretty head,
and smiles at herself,
never taking her eyes off of the mirror.

She sighs.

We turn on music,
and Starlite dances,
silently,
captivated by her
reflection.

It’s a universal truth come to two year old Starlite.

We find the answers when we find ourselves.

She need not ask anything,
It’s all there in the mirror,

We gather behind her,
and whisper,

“That’s you Star,
there you are.”

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