Sunday, November 23, 2008

When you're eating your way through your home

Some days, I just can't stop eating! I remembered there was something I'd had before when nothing else is filling. I had it, and voila! I'm full! Not low-cal, but man, I gotta stop eating! :P

Strawberry smoothie:
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cups vanilla ice cream
1 cup strawberries
2 small bananas, cut up
2 tbsp honey
3 tbsp ground flax seed

Stick it all in a blender for about 45 seconds.

Makes 2 gut-filling servings.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

One of those days at home

I started this morning making BACON. Oh my word, my daughter uses that word like it's nectar of the gods. She uses it like some kids say "Um". It's a filler word, perhaps a nervous habit. Truth be told, she's passed it on to her friends. They've picked foods of the month. I think 2 months ago it was pizza. Last month, tacos. This month, BACON.

She was thrilled with her bacon and egg sandwich.

I cleaned hurriedly and extensively around the house and began the laundry dig. I let my daughter throw the laundry from her room over the banister from the upstairs landing. It's her favorite silly laundry task. She then sorts it into the hampers I've set up for colors.

Afterward, we dressed ourselves and went to the store to pick up a few essentials. With her allowance, she bought a lil'kinz, to add to the insane Webkinz collection she has. This one, a horse, she named Gallup. She also bought a Nick magazine.

We came home, ate lunch (well, she did, I was still full from breakfast, I had a few carrots to her turkey and cheddar on wheat with Dijon mustard) and then were off to the store with my troop co-leader to buy art supplies for our special art project day, our special meeting.

We set up, and the troop came to the house for painting art canvases, yarn painting and making door hangers, along with a snack.

2 hours later, they were all gone, and I was on to making pork chops, some corn, and random vegetable nibbling (raw broccoli, mmmm).

The Webkinz registration began while I caught up on some CSI via DVR. Then we cleaned the kitchen together, put away some laundry, and I got a tour of the Webkinz house.

I must mention, the entire day I was tuned in via PC or iPhone to Facebook, giggling at the plethora of high school friends photos I was both party to and not. Laundry went on. Cleaning in assorted ways here and there.

This day, it's a lot like every other day. But somehow, it seemed better. I don't know why, but it just made me want to smile. A lot.

I want more of these.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The zen of cleaning a home

I am slowly learning how to clean my home better. When things were newer, it was easier to make things shine, look neat.

Now, at almost 13 years old for most of the things in this house, since it's initial building, short of some painting, it's all feeling a bit worn. What I would probably look at as character in other's homes feels like sadly abused bits and pieces in mine. Perhaps my memory of what they looked like, new construction, all shiny, taints my view. It does not help that like most homes built in the budgeting of today, it has little natural character. So, a bit of restoration begins, and hopefully, a little bit of inexpensive character adding. A little ammonia to soak into the grunge of the floor of the laundry room, which is also the entry from the garage. A little extra scrubbing of the hard water collection around the shower.

I started thinking, my house and I are a lot alike. It takes a little more to polish me in the morning than it used to, a bit more to make me shine than when I was newer to the world, but with just a little thought, it seems I have a bit more character,

Maybe we're both finally settling into what we are supposed to be for the long haul.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Cooking at home

Let's get one thing straight: I will never be confused with anything vaguely resembling a chef. But I can follow a recipe (complexities aside). I've discovered that all these meal planning services seem to think that I need to freeze a year's worth of food at once, that my child will eat the same thing over and over, or that I have a double oven, so that I can cook 1 thing for 20 minutes at 400 degrees, and something else for 35 at 350 and have anything ready during the same mealtime. I wish I had more of a knack for this stuff. One day I might get a hang of it.

Meanwhile, I make a mean salad.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Home alone

Lately, I'm almost never home alone. The silence is deafening after 9pm. I need to start reading more, probably. Or going to sleep early. Or something.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Happy at home

So really, where is home?

Home is where and when I feel steadfast and happy.

I spent a day at Grand Canyon hiking the South Rim with my daughter thinking about that. The terrifying drop below, the air above, the space around, the animals. I felt more at home that day at certain moments than anyplace I had been in a long time. That was an eye-opener to say the least. Without the trappings of everyday life, when you stop and just look around... home to me is about being with people I love, and the simple beauty of where you are. With all the places I've lived, ocean-views, concrete walled, urban, suburban, upper-class, middle-class, lower-class... I've always felt most at home when things were plain, unglamorous, simplistic. A slow simple day with basic things to do, and all the time to do them in.

I hope to be home more in the future. It makes me happy.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Waiting at home

Before the results come in...

Today is the first time in my life I've ever voted for a Presidential candidate.

Oh, I've placed votes for candidates before. But it's always just been to keep the other guy out. This time, I actually want one of them in.

Call me foolish tomorrow or four years right now, but for so many reasons, I want a President Obama in the White House.

The audacity of hope, indeed.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Home shopping network

From my early days of online shopping to my '30 days of consumer whoring' that I attempted on my blog years ago, I realize that I love the thrill of the web hunt. (My current search is the perfect Wii bundle, by the way.) And I appreciate well-made and well-styled products, as well as knowing when cheap is good enough, and it better be darned cheap. Cheap, well-made AND well-styled? Holy moly, I'm so there! I am pretty product loyal, and I love sharing what I find with others, because lo and behold, they actually sometimes like what I like!

My friends know I am forever loyal to It's easy, I can shop at 3am, they give bonus dollars, sure. But at the end of the day, I'm tired of going to the store to find that my favorite shampoo is no longer made, and standing like an idiot for 10 minutes trying to figure out 'what now?' It's less likely to happen at drugstore, since they have a larger audience, and when it does, I can research ingredients online, and not aisle-stand perusing. I have sensitive skin, I color my hair, I'm very price-sensitive. Online shopping works for me. They're the online presence of Rite-Aid, so they have a clue. For the second time in all the years I've been ordering from them, the delivery had product leaking all over it. Last time they did a reship. This time, since I figured based on the packaging issue that it would happen again, I asked for a refund, and they did. Their prices are comparable, and this week I found out they are partnered with upromise so I hope I see some college savings as well!

Nope, I don't get nuttin' for telling you this. Just thought I'd tell you busy folks some stuff I know. Got places you shop online with good service and good deals? Tell me! :)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Not Home

I've tried to get my daughter into my tradition, the Sunday news shows. During the political season, I've even let her venture into some of the seedier side, some of the political cable shows. Last night we watched McCain on SNL, what with the extra hour we were getting as we fell back into Standard time.

This week she saw a little mudslinging, she saw that crime happens in our hometown, she learned about local events, national and global events, she saw real issues, and she saw humor. I don't know if she'll have similar political beliefs to me when she grows up, but right now I think what's important is making her realize that it all matters. I want her to have compassion. I want her to see people. Not just the people in our neighborhood, but people who have different lives, different opinions, different challenges.

I took her to Grand Canyon back in March and she said "I love this place" more than once when we were in a boring area, a train station in Flagstaff, a barren lot in Williams, AZ. I asked why finally, and she said "Because it's not home!". I think that says a lot about what kids want to see. It's not all about the pretty canyon, the ride at the amusement park, the water at the beach. Sometimes, it's just about something being different, a different view, something not being home. I think that goes for people as much as places.

I hope to take her more Not Home places in these short years where I have this kind of influence, where she's still really paying attention. So that she'll learn to find those places and those people on her own someday.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Finding home

Finding my voice.
Finding my place.
Finding my way.

Finding home.

So glad to be back.

This weekend I am trying to dig out. Dig out of the numbness I've allowed myself to live in, on and off, for years. Closing my eyes, hoping that the things that are happening to me would just go away if I just ignored them long enough.

I have a good job, I live in an OK house, I have endless ideas and opportunities. But most of all, I have a wonderful daughter who means the world to me, that I want to be a positive influence, role model and support for. I am everything for her at this point. And I'm going to make sure that I do everything I can to make sure that she is put on the right path in life.

I've reflected and restarted my online life so many times. Looked for a better voice, a better audience, a better way. Today, I'm just ready to be me.

Look out, I'm home.