Friday, May 30, 2008

june cleaver hates me.

Here is an actual email I sent moments ago to a good friend of mine. We had plans for her to come over and watch movies. She asked if we needed to rent the movies...

Well, I have an extensive library of children's movies, so I think we're set. :| What movies do you have? The real option, as I see it, is renting something off of Rogers on Demand. Easy, peasy. Eli has my car, or I'd come pick you up.

For SOME reason, I decided to rearrange the furniture after work. I've yet to make dinner, and the house looks like we just moved in. Please, please come over to my insanity. I'm just going to do a little more picking up. Don't judge! ;) Pee before you come, my bathroom is BROKEN. You'll have to use my upstairs bathroom, and well, there's definitely laundry strewn across the bathroom floor and into the hall. Possibly toys, definitely dust. You've been warned.

So, like... 8:30? Just come here. There may be dishes in the sink. Alternately, I may be dead on the floor. Whichever.

See you soon, booze! I mean Keeley!


What's even awesomer is that I finally made my child a BUTTER sandwich with goldfish crackers and milk for dinner (it's what he asked for). Cartoons have been on for a solid 2 hours. He's wearing no pants because he's into that, and to be honest, I'm wearing my husband's boxers because it's hot and my shorts are too tight (damn you, winter!). I found more junk on the floor while I was sweeping, and rather than put the things where they go, be it in a drawer or in the garbage, I threw them BEHIND THE COUCH. Lazy. I totally give up. I joke like I think it's funny, but I'm a domestic failure.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

give your kids tickets... fuhcuz it works.

a while ago i was talking about this woman who was using tickets to get mornings to go smoother and i said i wanted to try it.

yea, i never did it. but last week, my friend christine was all, 'how are the tickets going?' and i had to admit that i never did it. shameful.

so, i did... that night. i got all the supplies and made it up. interestingly, the only actual tickets they had at my local walmart said either "beer", "liquor", or "refreshment". my sister was pretty sure "refreshment" was safe, but you know... why WOULDN'T i buy colored index cards and special stickers to make my own tickets... right? that's what i did.

it's working QUITE nicely. he gets up and gets dressed, puts on his sneaks, finds his backpack... all without me begging or yelling. it's amazing. he also eats most of his dinner, doesn't splash in the bath, and brushes all of his teeth. the cleaning up the toys one, that's not such a hit.

he gets an average of 20 tickets/day. so far he's traded in 3 times. price for rewards range from 10 to 100 tickets, with the ones he wants most priced at around 20 to 25 tickets. part of the key to this, i think, is having a box or bucket to store them in. we count them a couple times a day and talk about what he's saving for. it's good for his math too (as much math as a 4 year old does), how many do you have, how many more do you need, how many will be left when you trade in...)

OH, i almost forgot... he found my stash of index cards and got out his own stickers and made some counterfeit tickets. so watch for that. i'm sure he wasn't trying to cheat...

anyway, i rate this as an A+. i know people are concerned about teaching him to do things only for reward, and the effect may indeed extinguish... but for now, we aren't yelling and crying (and yes, i do mean WE) in the morning.

no time for lurking, only giving me feedback.


These are my "Bling Slings". I take a lot of weekend trips, not because I'm extravagant or lucky, but because my extend family lives 3 hours away, and sometimes I get to go to conferences. That's... it. The only reasons I leave the house overnight. Grandpa and science. Anywaaaaaay...
I also wear a ridiculous amount of jewelry and I am terribly afraid of losing or damaging it. So I had this old Chinese brocade jewelry roll that I used when I traveled. It's good, I'm not saying it's not... but my whole mantra is that things that are useful should also be GOOD LOOKING.

So, that's why I made the Bling Sling (yes I always take this long to tell stories).

Anyway, I showed these to the ladies in my lab today, and they basically gave me blank stares. Well, one of them played with it (thanks Julia) and another was surprised that I MADE it on a SEWING machine, and the third... she was engrossed in her sequences and I'm not sure she even looked. My point is... 2 things came out of the showing. 1. No one could tell what they were without being told, and 2. They were comfortable shoving their jewelry into random bags and not worrying. (FOR SHAME!).


Please, please, please post and tell me.

Yes, POST. Post a comment, lurk not!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

'quiche' isn't eggs, it's 'quiche'

and that's why 4 year-olds will devour it! because eggs are gross, but 'quiche' is awesome.

i made these babies for nights when my son won't eat what we're eating either because it's hot, it's curry, or it's non-existent because i'm too tired to make a dinner. i put them in the freezer and then i take one out and microwave or re-oven it.

disclaimer: dear moms, i KNOW there are no vegetables in this, but i was faced with the fact that on quiche night he either he eats dairy and some protein with no vegetables and has fruit for dessert, or he eats none of the above anyway because there are veggies in the quiche and then we all lose. it's a personal choice, but obviously you can add a veggie if your little one will eat it.

okay, here's the easy deal:

you'll need enough pastry for 2 pie shells, now whether you make your own, or buy them in the freezer section (i don't judge), you'll have to cut them into ~6" diameter circles. if you do buy them in the freezer section, just leave them in the tin to thaw for 15 minutes, and then take them out and flatten them.

take your 6"-wide pastry circles (you need 8 circles) and pop them into giant muffin pans (for mega muffins which are too large to eat). bake them at 350F for about 6 minutes, until starting to get golden. set aside.

to a medium sized bowl, add:

3 beaten eggs
1 1/2 cup milk
1 tsp onion powder
salt and pepper
6 slices of ham chopped

mix it all up (kids love to do this part and it's worth the egg splatters that end up being surprisingly hard to clean off the counter)

in a small bowl, combine:

1 1/2 cups of shredded marble cheese
1 tbsp flour

(technical note: i just put in the cheese, sprinkle the flour over top and shake it up and down until the flour makes it's way through the cheese, that's good enough).

add the cheese/flour to the egg/ham mixture and stir stir stir.

okay, now pile the quiche filling into the baked mega muffin-sized pastry shells. put them filled into the oven at 350F for about 30 minutes, until they expand and get nice and golden.

you can either consume them immediately, which is what happened to the first batch i made, or let them cool and wrap them for the freezer.

when you re-heat in the oven it takes long so make sure you're not in a rush if that's what you're doing. microwaving tends to lessen the pastry crisp, which is a bummer... but that's much quicker.


p.s. if anyone tells my son that 'quiche' is eggs, you're dead.

Friday, May 16, 2008

never EVER use FedEx to ship internationally. NEVER!

FedEx are Asses. A story by Sarah...

Hallmark magazine: Hi! We love one of your products and are considering it for our magazine article. Would you please send us your product overnight so we can look at it?

Me: YES!

FedEx: Overnight service, $60.00 (me forks over the money).

FedEx: Oh uh, we forgot to get ahold of you, but your box is being held at OUR customs facility. We just need to ask you questions twice and get the same information. (me answers questions).

Box: I'm totally LATE!

Hallmark magazine: I'm sorry, your items didn't make it in time and we had to make a decision. Sorry!


Insult to injury... the items come back from the magazine...

FedEx: Hello, um, we're charging you $30.00 in duty on your package coming from Hallmark Magazine.

Me: WHA? They are MY items, they were fabricated in Canada, they were commercial samples. I don't have to pay duty.

FedEx: Our mistake. That'll be $30.00 or you don't get the box. (me forks over money)

Fast forward to Monday of this week...

Book Publisher: Please send us your projects that we're putting in the book by Thursday the 15th or you're out!

Me: Hey Fedex, Um... can you send these items to this book publisher by Thursday, 4 days later?

FedEx: Yes, but it's going to be $40.31 and we'll OVERNIGHT IT.

Me: I don't want overnight. I want over 3 nights.

FedEx: Then it's not guaranteed. Overnight is guaranteed.

Me: FINE. (me forks over money).

FedEx: Hi, it's Friday... your items are at OUR customs facility.


FedEx: Oh yea, sorry... we had you fill out the forms wrong. Our bad.

Me: I'm enraged, you've cost me over a thousand dollars at this point in lost revenue and fees paid.

FedEx: Tough shit.

SO BASICALLY, I WANT TO DIE RIGHT NOW. This is the second project that I have not been able to take part in because my items didn't arrive on time. Are you EFFING KIDDING ME? Why didn't I learn the first time, you ask? I didn't realize that 'fluke' could happen twice.

If the publisher FedExes them back to me, and I have to pay duty on my own items again, I'M GONNA LOSE IT!

So. Mad.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

how i avoided immediate suicide...

a while ago i got the genius idea from my constant paranoia that i should really be backing up all my files, because my business and my schooling depended on what was on my laptop. DEPENDED. that involved buying CDs and being really diligent in remembering to do it regularly. so basically I never, ever did that. then i was reading someone's blog and they were talking about mozy. it's this thinger where you upload your files to some sort of server and they 'back-up' your stuff by keeping your most current upload, which you can set to happen on a regular basis without thinking (please excuse all my highly technical jargon there). i signed up because it was FREEEEEEEEEEE.

fast forward to last thursday... i brought my laptop to the lab but forgot my plug so i ran down the battery all day figuring i'd charge it up when i got home. well, my computer AC adaptor (or worse, and yet to be determined, the plug HOLE in my laptop) stopped working, and my computer slowly died. i had 10 MINUTES to think quickly about what files were most important (it's sort of like when you play out the house fire scenario, what do you grab after all the people are out? what? (the pictures)). then i was like, I'LL JUST DO A BACK UP TO MOZY with these 10 minutes i have left, and then i'll have EVERYTHING i backed up! so i did it. and now... even though my heart is way broken about my misfortune, i've got all my files.

i read about it, and mozy gets complaints about it not saving everything you set it to save, but so far, i've yet to find something i couldn't get. knock on wood.

point is, i have to insist that you go to mozy and sign up yourself... it might save you from throwing yourself out of an upstairs window!