Friday, October 30, 2009

The world keeps on Spinning...

Happy Halloween! This weeks Spin Cycle is about Halloween. No specifics, just Halloween. Here goes:
Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. Why? Because it gives people an opportunity to do fun stuff. Bring cookies to work, have a party, do something special with your kids. No, we shouldn't "need" an excuse to do those things, but we do. And I like all those things. The cookies, the parties and the fun stuffs. I like seeing how creative people can be, and trying to think of new things to be. Until this year, I decorated the house and all. Woo hoo!

I really like the holidays now that LG is getting older. Here is last year's picture:

I love this picture. He was so happy to put on his costume and crawl around the room. We didn't go out and trick or treat, but he wore it to his parade at school. My little giraffe.

Now this year:

Not the greatest picture (and sideways, to boot), but he still likes getting into the costume. This year, he's a lion. And he roared and stalked around. He even wanted me to put his hands into the mitten paws (yeah, I was amazed, too). Fun stuff. He's excited to go trick or treating. We'll probably only go to a few houses, but it will be fun. o is going to be a penguin.

I think, more than anything, I like what Halloween symbolizes. Maybe it comes from working retail for so many years, but to me Halloween is the beginning of the "holiday" season. I don't mean just Christmas and New Years, but the whole year end holiday season. From here out, we only have a few weeks between big holidays. Days off from work and school, eating too many treats, going to parties. I just love this time of year. I like all of these holidays. I like baking, and shopping, treats, getting dressed up in clothes you wouldn't wear any other time of the year. The stuff most people hate? Yeah, I love all of that.

One weird question about Halloween, though. How old is too old to trick or treat? When do you go from being happily received at the open doors to skulking around corners with shaving cream and tp? When I was a kid it was 12. Once you were a teenager, you were done. But the last time we had trick or treaters, there were high school kids coming to the door. With real costumes on. Uhm, to me that says get an after school job and go buy your own darn candy. What do you think?

Ok, I'm done. Go see Sprite's Keeper and see all the other spooky posts.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Random Tuesday Thoughts

It's still Tuesday, right? I haven't missed it? Time for some "Random Tuesday Thoughts". Read here, then go see Keely and the other Random players...

Tonight is my "off" night, so I have time to hang out with the laptop. What's an "off" night? That means from midnight to 4:am I am not responsible for children. No monitor, no 2:am bottle. I will put in my earplugs, only to be awoken if there is an emergency (or two kids screaming at once). Ahhh, the off night.

I went to buy new glasses today. LG seems to think my glasses are the holy grail of things to swipe. As a result, they look like I went to war and back in them. And PB reminded me that I haven't had a new set in a while, so off to the "Eye Glass Store" I went. And the whole experience reminded me why I wear contacts. Argh, with the trying to find decent looking frames (and the annoying sales woman who kept steering me to the half frames that make me look geriatric). Then I got to sit with annoying sales woman to decide what kind of lenses to get. I will give her this, she was rather kind when she saw my prescription. The last lady asked when I'd be putting the down payment on the seeing eye dog... At least this woman was honest enough to admit that if I only wear them once in a while, I didn't need the top of the line, Scotchguard lenses (no krappe, they Scotchguard the lenses for an extra $75!). I apparently got off cheap. Only $300 after my 30% discount and mail in rebate. WTF, people. How do people with multiple children in glasses, and glasses themselves do this? This is just wrong.

The mall had the "Santa" area all set up already. It wasn't open yet, but it was there. I suspect that on Sunday, all Christmas hell will break loose. It did look festive, though. Almost had me humming a Christmas carol. I will hold out until black Friday, though.

I realized today that I only have two more weeks home with little o. Then back to work with me. While I think I suck at the whole "stay at home Mom" thing, I will miss spending my days snuggling the little guy. It's a whole new perspective when your biggest goal is to get in a load of laundry and a shower before noontime. Now, I know real stay at home Moms do a heck of a lot more than that, but in my short siesta from the labor market, this is what I do. And I only have two more weeks. Poor o, though. This is really the only time he'll get me all to himself. LG had me for almost two years. o will have to share from now on. Sigh.

Ok, time to go watch the dancing show. Good times. Have a good week folks.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Spin Cycle- Yummy Stuffs

This weeks Spin Cycle is supposed to be to share one of our favorite recipes. I found this one earlier this year, and we really like it. And it's actually pretty timely. So, maybe you won't be having one of those leftover turkey sandwiches where you try to squish everything that was on the table between two pieces of bread this year...

I bring you- The Best Turkey Burger EVER!!!

1 1/2 lbs ground turkey
1 medium sized zucchini grated
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp dried basil

1) Arrange the racks in the oven so that your top rack is about 2 inches from your broiler (this assumes you have a top broiler). Do this before you turn on the broiler, trust me. Get the broiler nice and toasty.

2) In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients. Form into your favorite patty shape.

3) Place them onto a broiler pan and cook them for 6-8 minutes each side (12-16 in total).

These little lovelies are great. Put them on any kind of roll you like, with almost any condiment. Both PB and I warn that you should give them a nibble before you start adding stuff, though. They taste pretty good without anything!

Now, for all those people saying, "My kids would never eat zucchini!"- No worries. They will never know it's in there. I promise. PB had no idea until I told them. The only purpose for having them there is to keep the burgers moist (which they do surprisingly well).

I usually hate a turkey burger. They tend to be dry and tasteless. But not these guys. They are yummy. Even LG eats them without blinking.

Go, try them. And then head over to Sprite's Keeper's place for other yummy things to get you through this winter!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Spin Cycle- A Photo Something or Other...

This week we're supposed to do a photo essay spin. Woo hoo. This I can do. If you want to see more pretty pictures, go to Sprite's Keeper's site and take a gander.

These little lovelies are a scant two weeks old. I now present:

The Prince Picks a Pumpkin... Or Four.

"Why, yes, PB, I do think I'll go for a ride in this nice wagon.""This one will do for Mama. No, thanks, I don't want to get out of the wagon. I'm all good in here. You just go where I point.""And this next one is mine, thanks. Nope, still not getting out."
"This one is Papa's. He needs a big pumpkin. No worries, I'll hang on to it."

"This little one is for that kid Mama's holding. Tell him I gots one for him. No worries."
"Oh, yeah, there he is. Good, you didn't leave him out there. No, no, we wouldn't want that. Not at all.""And now I shall tell the lady behind us in line every thing I know about gourds. And not a word of it will be coherent. But she thinks I'm cute, so I'll keep talking." "Papa, did you pay the man? Cause we're ready to go now. I gots all the pumpkins I need right here. Slide on up here, o, and lets blow this pop stand."
And that, folks, is why I have a porch full of pumpkins that I will end up carving in the middle of the night, lest someone scream bloody murder...

RIP Captain Lou.

Is it me or are a lot of people dying this year? Or is it just that I'm of an age where my childhood icons are getting to that age? Or that I'm just noticing more?

Whatever the cause, another icon from my childhood has passed away. And this one might mean more to me than all the others combined. Today, Captain Lou Albano died. Don't remember Captain Lou? He was a pro wrestler, then a manager. He also played the Dad in Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" video.

Why do I care? I actually knew Captain Lou. Not knew him to sit and have a beer with him, no. But he went to my church. And he was really friendly. Just like us, he went every Sunday. He always put his hair into a ponytail for church, and stood in the back. He shook hands with the people around him at the appropriate times, and never acted like a celebrity. He was just another parishioner on Sunday. Some Sundays his whole family was there, and he'd hold his little granddaughter. He bought his car from my Dad at the local dealership. He ate at the local diner. Even though most people would recognize him as famous, in our town, Captain Lou was a regular guy. In today's day and age, you have to admire that.

RIP Captain Lou. Hopefully all the WWF followers of yore will take a moment to recognize the passing of a really great guy. As for me, I'm sad I can't drive home for the funereal. I'm sure there will be a long line of cars following the hearse to the cemetery (where he will be buried next to the locals, like my Mom and Dad).

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Random Tuesday Thoughts

Whew, it's Tuesday, and the littlest badger is asleep. During the day. With no one holding him. I know, you don't care, but it's a breakthrough around here. I'm going to join Keely and the gang at RTT, while I can. You should, too.

First, Happy Thanksgiving to all our Canadian friends. Hope you guys are celebrating with whatever it is makes Canadian Thanksgiving all that and more. Uhm, what do Canadians do on Thanksgiving?

I'm almost done with my Christmas shopping. Yeah, weird, I know. For some reason I thought I had to have all my shopping done before o was born. In September. What the hell kind of hormones cause that kind of thinking?

Insert cute picture to distract people from boring blogging:

This is from pumpkin picking last weekend. LG had a good time sitting in the wagon and pointing to pumpkins he wanted to hold. He wasn't as interested in stepping off of his royal throne and actually into the patch.

Fall is just zooming by out here in Ohio. It was in the 90's one day, and then the 50's the next, not joking. Now they're talking about snow. Eeek. Now that I'm not pregnant anymore, I'm wishing for those 90 degree days (when all I could do was wish them away in summer!). Dang it.

Have you noticed that people who hand out in craft stores can be a little weird? I went to the craft shop yesterday to look for something for LG and o to make for their teachers for Christmas. And it was packed. With people who look like they only crawl out of their sewing room for the Columbus day sale at the craft shop. People who stand way to close to look at what's in your basket (as though you might be hoarding all the good yarn or something...)

Ok, I'm going to run. Dishes to wash, laundry to do. How is it that having 2 kids causes 3 times the laundry?

Have a great Tuesday. Insert another cute picture to make it worth your while to have stopped by:

Friday, October 9, 2009

A Crafty Spin!

It's Friday. One rug rat is hanging out with our house guest, and the other is shopping with PB. So I can spin. Oh, wait. Hmmmm. Yeah, I'll spin. Go see Jen if you need real spin's, though...

This weeks spin is supposed to be about crafts. Uhm, yeah. So, I'm not so crafty. Or, rather, I am. I just have no follow through. I have closets full of half finished crochet and knitting projects, painting kits, stamping sets and more colored pencils, crayons and markers than I wish to share. I get the bug to do something, then I get busy, set it aside and it ends up in said closet. It's really rather sad. And I can't blame it on my kids. I've always been this way.

On the other hand, PB is a man to follow through. He has painted both of LG's rooms. I don't have a picture of the most recent room, but here's a picture of the nursery (now o's room).

I decorated, but PB painted the tree on the wall. And in the new room, he painted a really cool airplane and clouds on a bright blue wall (I'll try to get one for the next spin). Again, I decorate, but the hard part is all him. I'm really an ideas person.

Now, we have other crafty people in our lives. For instance, Grammie is the master knitter.

o's blanket is the grey and white and LG's is light blue and dark blue. And these take her about a week to make. And when they snag in the wash or on a toy? She comes and fixes them. I've actually had people try to buy them off of me. Crazy. But we love them. I've been the beneficiary of a few beautiful sweaters, too. She's just an amazingly talented lady. It must run in the family.

I've also surrounded myself with people who can sew (I can do hems, but we leave it at that), people who take pictures, and all sorts of other crafty stuff. While I don't get it done, I do like to be around people who do!

And that's about it. I got nothing. I just married into talent, thank god. Have a good weekend, see you on the next spin!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

The Spin Cycle- Tradition

It's like a merry go round of fun and excitement. Reach for the gold ring, then go see Jen, over at Sprite's Keeper (where most people probably got their spin's in on time...)

Ok, I'm late again. I know. It's been a busy week. But I have to spin. Why? Because all week this song has been going through my head, from Fiddler on the Roof. Why is it that so many spins end up with me having a random song in my head???

"Tradition" was the subject of a late night conversation last week. Christmas tradition, to be specific. Because it feels as though it's right around the corner. As would be expected, PB and I were raised with different Christmas traditions. Everybody does it different, right? But now we have to decide who's to pick for LG and o. Because they can't really be integrated.

We're not talking about dinner, or church or any of that stuff. We're talking about the man in red. The flying UPS man. Santa.

PB was raised in what I've assumed to be the most popular way for "Christians" these days. Let the little ones believe in Santa until a reasonable age, or some older kid ruins it for them. I'm pretty sure his parents weren't those overboard types who did foot prints on the roof, or carrots for the reindeer (but I can't be sure). They still went to church, everybody knew it was Jesus birthday and all that, but to them Santa was real. And he brought toys. If I'm understanding my MIL right, it was only toys. Everything else came from Mom and Dad. Sounds reasonable, right?

Here's the catch: we were never brought up to believe Santa was real. Not at any given moment did I think Santa was any different from Frosty the Snowman, or the Grinch. A fun Christmas story, and that's all. I knew all about him, but was not taught that he was real today, flying around giving out presents. Presents came from Mom and Dad, and relatives, to celebrate Jesus birthday. And you'd better believe that we had to go to church and thank Jesus for letting us share his loot before we could touch so much as a stocking sitting under that tree. Don't get me wrong, we made out like bandits. All the traditional bikes, and candies. But we thanked God and Mom and Dad. Not some mythical dude with flying herbivores. ( I should mention here that we were instructed NOT to speak of Santa to other kids. My parents did not want us ruining the neighbors Christmas traditions.)

So, the crux of the problem- to Santa or not to Santa? I would vote no. I don't even like Santa statues. I don't like cards with Santa. For me, he blurs the message. And it feels like I'm lying to my kids. To PB, it feels like he's stealing a little bit of their childhood by not letting them have the Santa myth for a while. And I can see his point. Part of childhood is believing in things that don't exist. Like fairies, and trolls, and honest politicians.

But to me, Santa is a tradition for the want to be Christians. The people who don't go to church, and don't really celebrate, but need something to allow them to buy presents and put up a tree. And I'm ok with that. They can have Santa and the Easter Bunny, too. Everyone should have a reason to give at the holidays.

And so we sat at 2:am, discussing the pros and cons of the situation. At times like these, I wish we were Jewish. Don't see the little Jewish kids hoping Hanukkah Harry will leave them extra geld for playing dreydl with, do you? (I might add that this was one of my favorite times of the year to visit our Jewish relatives. No Christian game holds a match to dreydl. Lions and the Romans aside.)

In the end, we resolved nothing. We're pretty sure LG and o are still both going to be too young to care this year. Which gives us another year to decide, I guess.

Throw your thoughts at me. What's your take?

And then have a great week. We'll see you next week, when the spin will be about arts and crafts. And I might be on time since we have an auntie visiting for the week to help out. Woo hoo.