Monday, June 21, 2010

Project Grandma day 5 or Let's go Banana(s) Bread

So here we go on a new week. Kids are off of school, it's hot, I'm working weird hours and somewhere in there we need to go to WI!  Roger's mom seems to be adjusting as well as expected at 93 in a new house with dogs and kids and craziness.  She's got the martyr thing going on - only ate a little of something she could find because she didn't know where (something) was - couldn't figure out how to use the stove (GOOD!) and the microwave is too high up for her.  If she would have looked at the plate we left in the fridge she could have had a sandwich of the turkey we left for her.  OH WELL, it's kind of funny and interesting to see the games being played out.  I think I am glad I made such a big deal about her living with us - I got my knickers so completely into a twist that now the reality is no where near as awful as my imagination.  (oh yeah I know shocking that I blew things out of proportion!)

Well, it's fine that I am a little nuts I guess!  Really, this particular slice of my life is so insanity inducing that I'd hate to go to all of the trouble of starting out sane and ending here!  We're already HERE!  So with that - I'd say let's go Bananas!

I made this for Roger's mom when she first arrived because I had 2 big bunches of ripe (okay rotting) bananas.

Preheat oven to 350 - line a bread pan with foil and spray.  Yeah I know aluminum foil will kill us all - but so will the sun, the water, DDT, and microwave popcorn.  So just go with it.

2cups Flour
1t Baking Soda
Dash of salt
1 cup Brown Sugar (NOT PACKED - just scooped - I know that's wrong but tough it's what I did)

Mix these together.
In a separate bowl mix 3 beaten eggs, 2 1/2 cups mashed SUPER RIPE bananas,  a dash of vanilla.
Mix that up so there are not a lot of chucks of Banana unless that's how you roll.
Mix in the dry ingredients only so that they are incorporated (no flour pockets)
Pour it all into the prepped pan and bake for about an hour.  I say about - you'll have to check it with a cake tester - aka toothpick - if it comes out clean - it's done.
Let it sit for a bit then have at it!

Life is a bit like bananas - if you just sit around and do nothing - you WILL rot.  But then that's where the best flavor comes in so you make up your own ending I guess!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Show me the money!!!!!!!

Okay so what is it about fucking money that makes me so nuts?  Oh I know I should say mad. BUT no, I mean nuts.  Stark raving - drool inducing - white coat bringing batshit CRAZY?!?  Case in point - we go to a baseball game today for Father's Day.  Roger WON 2 free tickets to the Nationals vs THE CHICAGO WHITESOX! (aka his team) we go ( I hate professional sports for so many reason's it's not funny and Julie Powell can go all Democrat on my ass, but I'm SORRY I abhor Dem's and Sports)

So we go to this game -  balls to the wind (not mine really) 3 kids and the two sort-of adults.  We now need to purchase 3 tickets to augment the 2 he won.  Okay we get lost on the way to finding our paid parking.  WORD TO THE NATIONALS staff  - your parking people suck.  No one.  And I mean NO ONE knew where the lot we PAID ONLINE to park at was.  30 minutes later we find it by blind luck.  Okay - it is close to 2 billion degrees on planet DC and we are lugging shit to the game!

Flash forward - it's good = we get there and Roger gets his game on.  But all I can think is OMG this is costing us 35 dollars an hour!  And I don't even get to drink!!!!  Cuz that's how I think.  Sorry - sign me up for some 12 step BS but I'm from WI.  We are born with a freakin beer in our sippy cup!

NOW I'm 40 - statute of limitations aside I have great parents who neither gave me alcohol as a child nor teen.  (I would have paid for that really) so I'm kidding. But REALLY? 8 bucks for a very very small beer I can't drink (wheat intolerant - yeah sucks to be me!) is not cool.  But the 3 nose bleed seats Roger could muster in addition to the GREAT seats he could have had were $18 bucks apiece!  I'm thinking in yarn terms - that's atleast a great scarf!  And then the $35 in soda and 1 nacho!

Why can't I just be cool with that?  I spent about 45 minutes in pissed off shock.  And then I realized I was wrecking it for the one person I should NOT wreck it for.  Roger.  On Father's Day.  Watching his team - with the family he decided to adopt.  At GREAT expense and trouble.  So I chilled the fuck out.  But why can't I just let this money thing go?  We won't starve and I have slightly more yarn than GOD does.  Help me here folks.  Perspective is needed.  Thanks.  and GN.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Caramel Apple Salad and Project Grandma day 3

Okay so as I have stated Roger's mom is living with us now and honestly - though it was trying in thought and we've only had 3 days of it - she really is delightful.  She is sassy and though deaf as a post is funny as heck and really sweet in a "I know and have seen more than you will in your lifetime!" sort of way.  I really just want to make her happy and adjusted here in a new place with the son she hasn't lived with since he was 20.  (hint - he's 50!) I have great kids who can appreciate someone who is older and slower than they are and jump right in to help. Okay I take ZERO credit for that since it was my beloved-ex who's mom (love her forever!) is slowing down and they have spent some time with her.  But I want her well fed and happy and adjusted.  Call it a pay it forward sort of thing.  I really don't want to live to 93.  I don't.  I probably won't.  No honestly.  I won't and don't want to unless I get to be Sarah.  I want to be hot at 93 - so HOT that a KING wants me and my husband (okay that would make him 103) is so scared he says I'm his sister!  I probably won't be though so when things shut down - I hope I get to go out gracefully.  But until then - I want her life to be a sweet sweet carnival.  So bring on the caramel apples!!!!!!!!!!

3/4 cup dark brown sugar.  Light is for the weak willed. just do the right thing.
2T apple cider vinegar
4 finely chopped granny smiths (the bigger the better - here size DOES matter)Leave the skin just discard innards
1 beaten egg white - okay here you use your best discretion - I've done this for years without ill effect but your mileage may vary so use pasturized eggs if it gives you the creeps.  I personally have an apparent deathwish so I don't care :D
1 small container of THAWED coolwhip Or whatever store brand you choose.  It doesn't matter one whit so cheap is FINE by me. It's not booze so bring it.
1 8oz can of pineapple crushed or one real deal full on pineapple you have hacked into tiny pieces (and then you only need half.  Enjoy the other half in one of my chicken recipes.
Juice from the pineapple you've killed or from the can.
1/2 cup chopped dry roasted and salted peanuts.

Mix liquids together ( that includes coolwhip) and beat like hell.  Fold in apples and pineapple mix this happy mess up and then sprinkle peanuts on top.  This is one of those salads you need to serve asap cuz it separates like a hollywood marriage - nasty and fast!

If you are taking it to a party you can keep each element separate and cold and then mix on site.  I've done it and it works BEAUTIfully! 

Roger's mom was wary - okay so it's not on the Pretty Pretty Salad list - but we made her try it.  3 helpings later it was given the mom sign of approval.  Just try to pry it out of the hands of those willing to try it.  You will be asked to repeat it at the next party. 

Hint - small chunks are a good thing so this is one where a good knife and patience is rewarded.  enjoy. 

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Project Grandma - day 1

Okay so Roger's 93year old mom landed in Virginia yesterday.  She is now part of our home.  On first blush - I gotta say honestly all is well with my soul.  I know I would be delusional to think that there will not be speed bumps in this particular life's road (aren't there always?) but the dogs love her, the kids adore her and she kind of brings a vibe with her that is pretty interesting.  This has got to be weird for her though.  Up to 3 months ago she lived primarily alone - then she moved in with Roger's brother and wife who both work full time - no kids at home.  Now she's here among the dogs and the noise - gotta be a culture shock.  I hope it's a favorable one.  I am going to say this now just so I can't say it wasn't written down - I think I want her to just stay here.  No switching back and forth.  Unless she needs it (I'd like to live somewhere else now and then too!).  We will see, but this seems to be good.  Right now.  It seems to be good.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Purple haze

I will apologize from the get go here if I am vagueposting because there are a lot of thoughts feelings and emotions dipping me in some kind of blue funk but soldier on I will and try to share some of this purple haze.   It really can be boiled down to selfishness.  I want what I want when I want it and I want it NOW!  Veruca Salt wanted it then and honestly it didn't end well - I get that same garbage shoot-looming-ahead-feeling.  In the next week, I will be introducing my 93 year old Mother in Law into our home.  The home she helped make possible for us.  This is the blended home of my new husband, my 3 kids 11,10 and 8 and briefly during the summer his son 11.  And our 3 dogs and 3 lizards.  Oh and I start a new job next week.  I have kid care and grandma care and a new job. And in all of that, the petulant child in me is whining kicking and screaming like someone just took her ice cream!  But this is not about me.  Well, okay this blog is (duh!)  But I know things could be so so much worse - I personally know people doing way more with way less and not bitching one bit.  And I need to be grateful.  I really am in so many respects.  But sadly in so many others I'm still that bitchy little whiner kicking at my chair - holding my breath until I turn purple.

Purple Potato Salad
2lbs purple potatoes the smaller the better for faster cooking - they are out there.  Any grocery store worth your time should have them
1 fist size onion finely chopped
1 dill pickle chopped
4 hard boiled eggs chop up three but slice the 4th one pretty like :D
1 stalk of celery chopped (my mom would gag if she knew about the celery you can leave it out if you hate it)
3/4 cup mayo
1/4 cup ranch dressing
couple of shakes of salt
Boil the heck out of the potatoes - basically stick a fork in - if it slides with no resistance they are done.  Carefully dump the hot water and run cold over them.  When cold enough to handle peel off their skin and slice into cubes or chucks - whatever makes you smile.  SEPARATELY mix the rest of the ingredients together (EXCEPT for the 4th sliced egg and the paprika!)  Then dump your mayo/ranch mix into the potatoes.  If it looks wet enough to your liking (Personally I don't like dry potato salad but not swimming either) put the egg slices on top and sprinkle paprika over the whole lot.  This does get better with chill time so if you are taking it out to a party make it a few hours ahead.  Enjoy!