Thursday, February 26, 2009

remember Slime?

William and I conducted a Science experiment tonight for his physical science class... As soon as I saw it coming together I said, Wow! You made SLIME! Remember slime? I remember going to Toyland in Germany in 1978 and my dad buying us these miniature Plastic garbage cans filled with something called, Slime. First, there was green slime and later there was purple Slime that came with rubber worms mixed into it. It was fun to play with but I remember it didn't Mix well with the shag carpeting we had in the living room. Any way, I think retro-Slime is what William created in tonight's experiment...  although he Reminded me that since he wasn't around in the 70's he couldn't very well use my Slime story to describe the material he came up with after mixing a Borax (remember Borax!?) solution with Elmer's glue. Instead, he wrote that it resembles Pudding that's been left in a bowl under the Couch for a week. I just hope that isn't something he's seen in Our house! Now I'm afraid to go look under the couch in his TV room. 

Doing these experiments and the other Assignments that have been sent home for William during this little Vacation he's on has me thinking that I could have probably Home schooled my boys and enjoyed it. I know, I know... And, I'll say it before you do! There are Whole schools of teachers, here and in Monterey probably wishing I had home schooled William! Got it...

Here's our Scientist!
adding Borax to 1 pint water
did you know PVA is Elmer's Glue? I had no idea... I had to
google it and then send T to Walgreen's to get some!
SLIME! Pink slime...
after the Experiment was over, William continued to play
... and Play!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

I hoped but didn't Expect this!

I always expect the Meals I put together to be enjoyed, and while I always Hope that what I throw together becomes a new Favorite, I wasn't expecting the Reaction my salad and especially my New vinaigrette creation got tonight!

We are both Huge salad eaters but it's usually Newman's Caesar over romaine for me and Marie's Thousand Island with a chopped hard-boiled Egg thrown into it over a tossed Garden salad for him. Or, when I'm grilling Filets, it's something Lazy-simple, such as a plate of sliced English cucumber, tomatoes and Red onion drizzled with Italian, straight from a bottle. But I knew the moment Mom served me her salad last week that Caesar was out and that this would be my Favorite, now and forever... Amen. But I wasn't so sure about him. Turns out, I didn't have to Wonder long about how he liked it because after I finished loading the dishwasher I noticed my Bowl was missing. It's not a big Kitchen so I went into the Den to ask if he knew where it was. And this is what I found...

Wonderhubby eating the Remainder of my salad by the fireplace,
straight out of the Mixing bowl... He LOVED it! And, thank Goodness, because
10 bottles of Trader Joe's White Balsamic Vinegar is a lot for just little ole' me!

Working on it!

Woke up this afternoon from my Second nap ready to admit that I've been feeling Homesick since my return from Monterey one week ago today... 

Homesick for mom and dad, homesick for the beautiful Scenery I traded in for North Carolina, homesick for the Friends I saw again, and just homesick in General. I don't usually get Down and I've never, ever felt like I've been Depressed in any way that mattered... Even when things aren't going just My way I can't help but feel Happy and inspired by my Life. Besides, when things don't go my Way I'm always too busy working my Plan B, which is always to make Plan A work, to be bothered. Nevertheless, my dad's illness and Surgery and my trip back Home and the great time we had just being Together, thrown on top of missing Brandon the same way I imagine missing my right arm if it were Severed at the elbow, has had me feeling slightly blue. 

Fortunately, I am my Father's daughter, so today I pulled up my Big-girl panties and decided to GET THE HELL ON WITH IT before anyone besides Me noticed!

And, I couldn't think of a Better way to get Happy again than to replicate the dinner my Mom made my first night back on the Peninsula. Besides, those Ten bottles of White Balsamic Vinegar I bought at Trader Joe's in Monterey survived being checked through Continental all the way back to North Carolina so it was High time to pay some Serious homage!

Well, lookie-there! Dole as a salad Mix with a White Balsamic
Vinaigrette. How nice for them! But I'll make my own, Thank you!
Shopping for Bell peppers, these signs Alarmed me a little... The yellow Highlight on the sign
there screams, CAUTION! to me, the same way Police tape does... And, the Way they went
out of their way to denote, Product of Mexico has me more than a bit worried too...
Although Phillip, the produce guy, said it's always Been there, I've never noticed
this Sign before. Hum... I wonder what he would do if I asked him to Toss together
a quick Salad to allow me a taste of his fine Vegetables before I commit to buying
them... I'd start with those Suspect looking Bell peppers from Mexico!
I-Heart-You, Trader Joe's White Balsamic Vinegar! And, since you were
packed in with all my Clothes and good Shoes, I'm so glad you Made it!
I wasn't Kidding... I'm scrubbing those Peppers!
Kitchen time = Bing time!
I mixed Dole's Baby Lettuces mix with a bag of
their European salad Mix. Into the Bowl they go!
putting my German wieners on...
... to boil. The trick is Not to pop them!
Back to our Salad-making extravaganza!
Sure is Pretty and I haven't even added those Mexican peppers yet!
a little Kosher salt
and, lots of Cracked black pepper makes it Better!
and Now for the Magic! Mom said it doesn't take much... However,
when I asked her, How much do I add? she just said, You'll know... 
Now I've added the olive oil too.  This smells Ah-mazing!
finished with a little Feta and a toss!
I was careful to add just a little Vinegar before I tasted... I was close
so I added just a splash more until it was Just like mom's. Perfect! 
This is what Carmel Valley in Summer
tastes like to me... Where is my Fork?
Now, this can Cure homesickness...
... well, Almost. I'm working on it!

King Cake from Whole Foods... Why not?

We popped over to Whole Foods this evening because I wanted to pick up some Tulips like the ones I brought home to mom from the Monterey Whole Foods last week. However, I was immediately reminded again how non-Fantastic our Whole Foods is compared to the one in Monterey... Because while Monterey has a huge selection of Cut flowers to choose from, our sad little Whole Foods barely has 6 little buckets of cut flowers and not one of them had Tulips in them today. Poop! So no flowers for me... Nevertheless, we did pick up some Pitas, hummus, fruit and Cheese to nibble on for lunch tomorrow and after Sampling the King Cake, we took that home too!

the icing is just right - not too sweet. The pastry is tender
and flaky and the Cream cheese filling is perfect!
Bing's still over there in the Sink watching the water...
Let's have some King cake!
William invited Hanna over this evening... She loves to play Scrabble, which just
happens to be my Favorite game too. I knew there was a Reason I like her so much!
And, she likes Cake too! Hanna got the Charm in the slice
I cut for her! Look at William and those Dimples...
I slipped Bing a little icing and he Loved it! 

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Saturday... finally!

Saturday finally came. And, not a moment too soon. I slept in until eight o'clock and then went back to Bed to sleep some more... It was the first morning since my Return that I felt in sync again with my Time zone. It also felt Good to unwrap and organize the piles of Gifts and souvenirs I brought back and to finally Clean my house! 

As much as I appreciated the effort while I was gone, someone forgot to add the Lavender water to the load of Duvets and sheets he did so I began my housekeeping Day fixing my laundry. After the laundry was done and the Beds made, it was on to my Floors and windows. And, while I was doing that, the phone rang, and IT WAS BRANDON! My Brandon on a 4-hour pass at the Ft. Benning PX with a whole hour of Phone time! Christmas came on February 21st and it was Fantastic! 

Brandon sounded great. He said he had a Nestle milkshake in front of him and was eating some Haribo gummies - both snacks that he hasn't been able to Eat in over 8 weeks since leaving home for Basic. Brandon's just as excited about his 36-hour pass as we are, which happens ONE MONTH from today. We talked for just under 45 minutes and it Made my day! Mom and dad received a call too. Life is good!       

 Meet Mr. Magoo. Brandon brought this little Bonsai tree home from
work one night when he was still at Home Depot. It sat in his room on my desk
until all the Leaves fell off... Then, when Brandon cleaned out his room to prepare
to leave for Basic, he put it out into the garage near the Garbage can. Instead of throwing
it out though, I decided to bring it into the house, Give it a little trim and put it on the dining
table in in the kitchen where it gets a little shot of Sunshine twice a day. And then it happened...
Just before I left for California I noticed Mr. Magoo was getting New leaves. Now look at him!
I told Brandon about Mr. Magoo's rebirth and he was Very happy about it!
Can you believe that Ash Wednesday is just around the corner?
Better start making my List of things to give up for Lent!
I'm in the Kitchen so there's my Bing! I missed him so much...
Brandon asked me if I thought Bing will remember
him when he gets back home...
I told him, OF COURSE he will!
I am such a Sucker for Packaging! Put Wallace and
Gromit on a little Wheel of cheese and no Price is too much!
...must have been a little Salty for Bing though because as soon as he
finished the Little piece I slipped him he was in the sink for a Drink!
just let it run, Mom!
that's Better...
Bing's watching the water Run down the drain
What else ya got?
Such a beautiful Cheddar!
we've added this to our List of favorites now at Whole Foods!
speaking of Packaging... How cute is this Bunny soap on a rope?
I bought up the last of the Valentine's Day jelly beans they had too because when
I got home I found my Richard Nixon library candy Jar on my desk empty again