Monday, May 10, 2010

Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives: Grinder's

This is an episode of Diners Drive-ins and Dives featuring Grinders, where Stacey and I ate lunch on our way to see Chelsea Handler. So so yummy. We had a pizza, which was delicious. And I cannot wait to go back. It's definitely added to my list of definite stops in KC.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

24 Hours and Counting

Until my sister and I will be hanging with Chelsea Handler. We are going to travel down to Kansas City where Chelsea is doing a book signing and performance. I cannot wait.

Unfortunately for me, the universe is slightly less excited about my upcoming mini vacation.

Yesterday, I realized that the squeaking in my brakes may have grown into a full fledged grinding. Not good when said car is transporting us to our next celebrity event. Thankfully, my brother-in-law is going to look at them for me. (He's also watching all four kids this weekend and might be running for father / brother-in-law of the year.)

Today I woke up after a mere 4 1/2 hours of sleep to realize that Savannah has a field trip today. These ususally require a "sack lunch". The only sack lunch I could provide today would have consisted of the ribs I made for dinner last night and forgot to put into the fridge. I figured the chance of food poisoning was too great to risk and was forced to get the kids up early so we could run to the grocery store before school. They were less than thrilled to be woken up and told to "HURRY UP!"

I raced down to the kitchen to let the dogs out only to discover that the new container of vanilla ice cream that I had pulled out of the fridge last night to soften up had been forgotten and allowed to melt and seep all over the counter and underneath the microwave. CRAP!!

One entire roll of paper towels later, we were out the door. All 3 of us had a frown deeply etched on our faces.

After eating a doughnut, my mood improved. The universe may be trying to bring me down, but I will not be broken! Screw you universe! I am still super excited about the trip to see Chelsea Handler and will be posting updates, so stay tuned!! And if things continue to go this badly, I will be taking a bottle of Belvedere vodka with me (for Chelsea to sign and for self medication if necessary).

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


Peanut, the newest member of our family. He's a very cute little gray and white gerbil.

Savannah got him for her birthday last week. It was a very exciting day. We returned to our house on a Thursday night, after buying Peanut and all of the equipment he requires, only to realize that we were all starving. I had a manic mommy moment when I realized I had to cook a quick dinner, assemble a gerbil cage that was entirely too complicated, and put out 2 dogs that had been cooped up all day and had vomited all over the hallway they are penned up in. Oh, Joy!

I chose to tackle the insanely complicated gerbil cage assembly first, figuring that once the gerbil was safely housed in his actual cage I would feel better about cooking food nearby. He was patiently awaiting his new home while hunkering down in a small cardboard pet box. Maybe patiently is the wrong word since he was frantically scratching at the box and I was certain he was about to gnaw his way to freedom at any moment. I was quite certain that Savannah's birthday would not end happily if her new gerbil ended up on a glue trap in the basement.

45 minutes later, I could not figure out how to get one of the last two pieces on the cage. There was this small piece that just wouldn't fit in it's place. So I forced it. And broke it. Dang! Peanut now lives in a home that is partially held together by duct tape. Much like everything else in our house. Savannah wasn't pleased about my breaking the cage, but so far Peanut hasn't escaped and the duct tape is holding strong.

Savannah then set to loading up the cage with bedding, filling the food bowl and water bottle, and placing the chewing sticks. Finally Peanut has his home.

I was then able to cook dinner and feed our hungry bellies. And clean up a very nasty hallway. Two activities that go great together.

Savannah spent the rest of the night playing with her gerbil. She had her hand in that cage for a couple of hours petting Peanut. She was desperate to hold him. We had been warned that the gerbil hadn't been handled much yet and was very young. So, biting was likely.

"Mom, Peanut's bites don't even hurt!" Savannah came running to tell me. "He just nibbles a little bit.
Great, I thought. But, he hasn't really bitten her if she thinks it doesn't hurt. A short while later, she came to me with blood dripping down her hand. "MOM!!! Peanut bit me." He had bitten her and he bit her hard. We washed off her hand and had to sit on the couch for a little while because the sight of "so much" of her own blood made her nauseous. "He is NOT coming to show and tell." She told me.

By the time bedtime had rolled around Peanut had been mostly forgiven and allowed to move into Savannah's room. He has been living in there happily now for almost a week. We still have not successfully picked him up and are using a special rubberized glove to try to pet him with (for finger protection). He has amused us all by running like a lunatic in his exercise wheel. Unfortunately his favorite time to exercise is around 3am. This has forced Savannah to abandon her own room a couple of nights because of the huge racket he was making.
All in all, Peanut has been an exciting addition to our family. Savannah has been reading to him every day after school this week. He's the perfect captive audience.
I'm still determined to get a good picture of him. So far he's been incredibly camera shy.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Oh what a week!

This has been a very eventful week in our house. Savannah celebrated her 9th birthday on Thursday. I'm not sure how 9 years have flown by so quickly. She was just my little tiny baby a minute ago, I swear. But, nevertheless, she is officially 9 years old now. And what a cute 9 year old she is.

She wanted to take my homemade pretzels in to her classroom for her special birthday treat, and being the world's greatest mother, I could not deny her the birthday pretzels. Unfortunately, this meant that I would have to get up extra early on a work/school day and make pretzels. I figured that giving myself an entire extra hour for pretzel making would be plenty of time. Turns out it takes 3 hours from beginning to end to make a double batch of homemade pretzels. I was ready for a nap before we even got out the door. But, the pretzels were delicious and all of her classmates were treated to my awesome pretzels.

Then, on Friday, Savannah had her day at the farm field trip. I took the day off to go with her. We travelled all the way down to the Washington County Fairgrounds (this included a 2.5 minute bus ride to transport the kids the 4 block distance). Once there we were treated to a lesson in how a cow's stomach works. We learned about the 4 compartments and ruminant nutrition and how cow's diets are studied (for fattening them up, most likely) and then the class was served some all beef hot dogs. Savannah, who had been suppressing her gag reflex for the entire lesson in cow digestion, chose to pass on the hot dogs.

We were also shown some cute little pigs. They were completely adorable. And after all the kids were done saying "aaaaaaaawwwwwwwwwwww", they were asked about what kinds of delicious meats come from pigs. There were shouts of "BACON" and "RIBS" and "PORK CHOPS", all the while they were putting their hands through the bars to touch the cute little piggies. After our little lesson in all the products that contain some kind of pork by-product, the class was treated to some ham. Once again, Savannah passed. I was well on my way to becoming a vegetarian.

This little field trip had ruined all of my delusions about my meat being delivered to the meat case at the grocery store by magic meat fairies. And all those cute cows and piggies live long happy lives out in those fields I pass by every day.

So, Savannah and I made ourselves feel better by spending the evening shopping for some cute new outfits, and bringing home some delicious broccoli beef, sesame chicken, and szechuan pork all provided by the meat fairies. We managed to gobble it all up.

Saturday was spent at the baseball complex. Myles had baseball pictures followed by a game. I had concession stand duty. This was Myles's first game of the season. He played second base and right field. And his team kicked some butt. These boys have endured some tough seasons in the past and have struggled to keep their spirits up. This year, their opening game was a shut out. 15 to nothing!! I had to watch as much of it as I could from the concession stand window, but Savannah and Papaw were taking some excellent pictures.
It was a great start to the season! All the boys came out of the dugout with smiles on their faces.
Tomorrow will be Savannah's birthday party with the family. And I'll be introducing everyone to our newest family member, Peanut. So, stay tuned. Another week of craziness is about to begin...