Monday, November 30, 2009

Pie Perfection

Just lookit my pretty pie!!! :)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Little Miss Perfect

The commercials for this new show on WE, Little Miss Perfect, make me want to jump through the TV and strangle these "mothers" who put their daughters through these pageants and tell them how un perfect they are and then ask them "Don't you want to be little miss perfect?" and the child in a broken voice "Okay." OMG. Seriously makes me want to throw up. And I hate that cable is endorsing this behaviour by making this show. These poor little girls. :(

Friday, November 27, 2009

The Greatest Food Holiday in All The Land...

Thanksgiving was AMAZING. YUMMY YUMMY. Seriously.

And it was no stress.. I didn't even get out of bed till just after noon. Nice, huh? The Husband.. he's good like that. :) He tells The Children they don't want to poke the sleeping bear any time they come close to my closed and locked bedroom door. ;)

I ended up brining my turkey breast in the same brine solution I did the whole turkey on Monday in. I roasted it after shoving a softened herb butter under the skin and brushing melted herb butter all over them... LOTS O' Buttah! Butter is your friend. Really it is. Come over to the dark side.. We have cookies. Made with Butter. :) I ended up roasting them on a baking rack, over a bed of herbs and aromatics... Apples, sliced lemons, onion, celery, split garlic cloves, and the poultry herbs.. parsley, rosemary, sage and thyme... Sing along with me.. LOL To keep the oven "moist" I poured a bit of apple cider over the aromatics, but not enough to actually touch the meat. It ended up so moist and so juicy.. was a cinch to carve up, was easy to get all of the meat off the bone (couldn't find boneless..but did find two nice split breast pieces that were the same weight). I don't know how long I roasted them for.. I used a meat thermometer in each one to keep track of progress.. and used the touch test. I'm getting very good at "feeling" a meats doneness. The Husband said he's good with me never doing a whole turkey again.. This was extremely yummy, easy to both cook and carve, and SO freakin moist. Next time I may get some turkey drumsticks to go along with it.. but really, the breasts were just perfect. :) Very happy with my results.. this is a winner! :)

I made the stuffing with a Tuscan Boule and cornbread.. lots of fresh herbs.. more butter.. sauteed celerey, garlic and onions.. It was pretty freakin yummy. I browned the tuscan bread in butter in a sautee pan and then poured what was left of my melted herb butter over them and tossed.. ended up with toasted herbed bread cubes.. That made for a NICE dressing.

The Risotto was... Umm.. devastatingly DEVINE. Seriously words can't describe how much I loved it. Replacing the pancetta with sweet italian turkey sausage.. GOOD MOVE. Holy crap. And I totally forgot to buy a bottle of white wine for the risotto.. It's the one thing I always forget. I'm a red wine drinker. I always have a bottle of red here.. but rarely a white. Well, I didn't think lambrusco would make a very good addition to the risotto.. so I got the bottle of marsala out and used it. I figured it was better than the lambrusco. It was just fine with marsala! I used fresh basil and fresh sage to finish it off.. and Seriously. Even The Husband was in awe of my goddess like kitchen skills. And he doesn't get off to Italian food quite the way I do. LOL

Ended up doing a combo of Rachael Ray's cider green beans and my everyday green beans with bacon and onions. Rendered the fat out of the chopped up bacon and then took it out to sautee the onions and garlic in the fat.. Added the blanched green beans, and then de-glazed the pan with apple cider. Let it cook off for a min to reduce the cider down.. and added the bacon back in and voila! YUM. Usually I just deglaze the pan with a little chicken stock or white wine if I happen to have any (which is rarely, as noted above LOL). May try marsala next time. Who knew?! Marsala is good for more than just chicken! LOL

The Mashed Potatoes were as always good.. Just my standard dish with cheddar, butter and sour cream. Kids fave. And since they won't touch stuffing or risotto, we kinda needed them so the kids had a side dish. LOL

Went with Hawaiian sweet rolls for the bread.. and saved a couple peices of cornbread for The Pickest Eater in All The Land, since he doesn't like hawaiian sweet bread. Whatever. How can you not like hawaiian sweet bread? I'm seriously beginning to think something is wrong with his tastebuds. LOL

Oh, and of course we had to have jellied cranberry sauce. It's The Husbands favorite, and I have to admit, even though I love fresh homemade cranberry sauce.. I love me some jellied cranberries from a can. And since it was the ONLY thing in my Thanksgiving Dinner that came from a can, I think it's forgivable. I just love the little lines.. perfect guide for slicing! LOL

For dessert.. there was apple pie, pumpkin pie (I just bought that, incase we didn't get together with The Brother and his fam.. which is exactly what happened), and leftover chocolate mint cake.

See, I totally went low key for Turkey Day this year. Yeah, seriously... for me.. this is low key. Can you even imagine what it must be like when I go all out?! I'll give you a hint..At least 10 side dishes and takes 4 dishwasher loads to clean up, plus a lot of handwashing. LOL This year.. only one dishwasher load, and a moderate amount of handwashing. LOL

What a rough life

It must be so hard to be Butter Bean. Poor kitty.. all these pillows to choose from.. it must be such a hard decision. LOL

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Birthday Cake

So this year, like every year, Justin wanted a chocolate mint cake. I make it a little different every year. But it's always a chocolate cake, with a chocolate frosting and andies chocolate mint candies.

This year, I did a double chocolate cake... Rich, moist chocolate cake with miniature chocolate chips running all throughout. And the frosting was a mint chocolate ganache.. I melted a bag of semi sweet choc chips and a bag of andies "bits" (the candy is alreayd chopped up.. very handy!) with heavy whipping cream in a double boiler.. added some corn syrup and vanilla and let it cool all the way down before moving it to the bowl of my mixer with half a stick of softened butter.. Then I started whipping it with the wire whisk attachment on my mixer.. It wasn't thickening up as much as I wanted, so I set the bowl down into another bowl filled with ice water.. that did the trick and hardened the ganache up just enough so it would take the air the mixer was whipping in.. I ended up with a really rich, really creamy frosting that was just minty enough without being over powering.

Justin LOVED it and said this was exactly what he wanted when he was trying to describe it to me.. and he wants this to be IT from now I. No version could top this one, he says. :)

As always.. cake porn...

Awww.. Ain't it purty?? Justin particularly liked the little spiral on the top.. He watched me do it by turning the cake stand and holding the spatula still and he thought it was the coolest trick ever, LOL Sweet kid. Sometimes.

And here is one of the birthday boy blowing out his candle..

He said that it was the best birthday.. and thanked me a lot of times tonight for everything we did.. The pizza park last night was a lot of fun.. he got to do laser tag and go karts and got about 2/3 of the way up the difficult path on the rock climbing wall. And tonight The Husband took him to get a new bicycle.. and while at the store, Justin found some new scooter thing that has a kick pedal on it or something and really wanted that instead.. so we made it clear that we wouldn't listen to him gripe about not having his own bike until his birthday next year if he chose the scooter over a bike.. The Husband made him walk around the store and think about it.. and he said he was okay with it and settled on the scooter. He's pretty stoked and had a lot of fun testing it out after it was all put together.

Man, the next time he has a birthday, I'm offically going to be the mom of a teenager. I know that's not for another year.. but I swear, I was just decorating my house for Christmas last year like 2 minutes ago.. Is it really time to do it again? The years seem to be moving at lightening speed as I get older..

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


I've burned myself not once, but twice on the same handle of my roasting pan. I'll be sporting a nice scar on my left wrist for the next year or two. It's a good thing I'm getting paid to do this. LOL

12 years of Motherhood :)

Happy Birthday to my oldest baby!!! Justin is now 12 years old. :)

I'll be going up to the school to have lunch with him.. He requested a cheeseburger, fries and a chocolate mint shake from Dairy Queen. :) Tonight I'm going to take him and a friend to Austin's Park and Pizza.. it's a fun pizza place with a huge gameroom, bumper boats, 2 rock walls, mini golf and go-carts. :) Should be fun.

Cook for Hire

So I've got the turkey in a nice brine.. just about ready to come out. I put whole peppercorns, whole allspice berries, sage, rosemary, and thyme in it along with salt, chicken stock, and brown sugar. It should make the meat really moist and yummy. :) I'm just about to mix up an herb butter to rub inside the skin, and I've got a lemon, a head of garlic, an onion and a bundle of fresh thyme, rosemary, and sage tied together for inside the bird during roasting. I'm mostly using Ina's Perfect Roasted Turkey recipe.. but adding parsley, rosemary and sage to the herbs instead of just thyme. I think it'll be good! I'm all set to deliver the roasted turkey and a pan gravy around 1:00pm, after I have lunch with the birthday boy.

Okay, I better go get started.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Busy Monday

I have lots planned for today.. I promised The Mother-in-law that I would come visit her today and look through all her photos from the European Cruise she just took. So, I mixed up a batch of blueberry scones and have them in the oven now to take to her house.

I also need to stop at The Good Grocery Store to see if they have the boneless turkey breast with skin on that I want.. They didn't have it at my regular store. They did have a whole bone-in turkey breast, though.. And Ina has a recipe for one of those on FN... So if I have to I'll make one of those.

Plus, I need to get a brine ready to go for the turkey I'm roasting for The Friend tomorrow.

There is tons of laundry to fold, and even more to wash.. HOW does it get this bad in just a couple weeks? Seriously? HOW. I am such a slave to the laundry hampers.. it will never be done. Didn't I like *just* write a laundry fairy post? Where is the bitch that does our laundry?! She's so fired. It's outta control again. And I'm not sure what the heck happened in the twins room.. but it looks like a fabric confetti bomb went off in there.. It looks as if every stitch of clothing they own is on the floor.. yet the drawers are so full, stuff is hanging out?!? Methinks I should do some clothes weeding, because there must be crap that is either way too small or way too big in there for it to be this full. Either that, or I really need to stop buying them clothes. LOL

And that brings me to The Mamma's "Bitch of the Day". This will be a regular segment here on Guess what the heathens, I mean kids, did today.

*on soapbox* My bitch of the day is: "If there are so many items of clothing spread out between two dressers packed full and stuff hanging in the closet that it's practically spilling out of the drawers.. WHY do my daughters need stand in their room butt ass naked for 20 minutes every morning trying to find a freakin pair of pants?!?! And why do they have to stand there, (still butt ass naked) hollering for dad, who is outside warming the van up, to tell them whether or not it is cold today? Why can't they at least get a freakin pair of underware and pants on while they are waiting to find out if they need a long sleeve shirt or not? Why must the WHOLE PROCESS of getting dressed stand still until they know what sort of shirt to get? If anyone can make it over to twinland and find out for me, I'd appreciate it.. because everyone is getting a little tired of being late in the mornings. Thank you". *off soapbox*

Okay.. I'm off to butter and sugar the tops of some scones! Wait. Speaking of Butter. The Bestfriend is SO going to kill me. But it's not my fault. I didn't bring it home. I didn't! I didn't even ask for one. I didn't! It was a total suprise, and The Husband did it.. And I'm weak, okay? I admit it. The minute he crossed the thresh hold with her he knew she wasn't leaving, so it's his fault. Yell at him. He said she was playing frogger in the road, and couldn't just be left there. And we were planning to get one when we moved anyway, but I swear this wasn't my idea! It wasn't!And well.. Umm.. Here's my new baby :) Meet Butter!!

And yes, I really did name her Butter. :P Also known as Butter Bean, Butter Cup, Butter Baby, Baby B, and Lady B. :D

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Well.. I guess I will afterall.

What will I do afterall, you say? Roast a whole turkey. LOL

Just as I hit send on my previous post, my phone rang. A friend needs my help. She needs to take a turkey to her office Thanksgiving party this week, but has absolutely zero time to make one. She offered to bring me some money by(and the amount she offered is WAY to much for a turkey), and said that if I would be willing to pick up the turkey when I do my shopping and prepare it in time for her party, I can keep the change. I would have done this happily for her, free of charge.. but it's kinda awesome to sort of "get paid" to cook for someone. It's not a ton of money.. but it's the point that I'm getting paid to cook!

So, now I'm off to figure out which recipe I'm going to use and make some plans. :)

Going Rogue for Thanksgiving

We were going to try to go to The Mother's for T-day this year.. but as finances aren't really cooperating with taking The Husbands gas guzzler 20+ year old van on a 6 hour trek to the Rio Grande Valley.. We've had to change plans and are staying home. The Sister invited us to their house.. and that was the plan until yesterday. See, I watched Rachael Ray's Thanksgiving in 60 the other night, for probably the 10th time. And I made the decision. I am changing up Thanksgiving this year. The Brother does not dig new things on T-day.. so I decided we would pass on their invitation. The Husband is totally cool with the idea of a Thanksgiving dinner with NONE of the normal fare. The Brother on the other hand would organize a mutiny over it. We do like the same desserts, though.. so we decided to let them have their tradional meal, we'll do our Rogue meal, and then we will get together for dessert. Everybody is happy. :)

My biggest rogue move: I am *NOT* going to roast or fry a whole bird. Nope. Don't feel like it... and I'm veddy veddy intrigued by her herb roasted boneless turkey breast. Looked juicy, the skin was crispy, and it took.. 40.. yes *40* minutes to cook. Umm, yes please! LOL

Now don't get me wrong. I do enjoy making the whole bird. Sorta. I used to make turkey the way The Mother makes turkey.. in a reynolds cooking bag. Yeah.. no crispy skin with that at all. Growing up I didn't know there was such a thing as crispy turkey skin. Or that turkey could be carved in pretty slices. No, The Mother's turkey literally fell apart when she took them out of the bag. They were good. But The Mother didn't put herbs on them or anything like that. Then The Husband got one of those turkey fryer kits. And we really liked it. Then we found AB's turkey brine and fried one that been brined.. EVEN BETTER! The Husband did all the cooking work, I carved it up.. voila. Last year I did Giada's roast turkey.. And it was yummy, though I really had a problem with my oven getting it done evenly.. not sure what was up. But it always so much work.. carving a whole bird is a huge mess.. There is meat leftover that gets tossed sometime around Christmas because no one ate it.. And I don't know.. but I just don't feel like it this year. The boneless breast looks easy.. it looks yummy.. and it's new! :)

So far I am thinking:

RR's Herb Roasted Turkey Breast
My own pan gravy, with maybe a splash of brandy, but not the cider
Cheesy Mashed Potatos (kids fav, gotta have it)
Butternut Squash & Turkey Sausage Risotto
Ciabatta and Cornbread Dressingg with fresh sage (this is a knock off of my mom's.. she uses dried bread cubes, plus cornbread in her stuffing.. so I'm going to replace the regular dried bread with ciabatta)

And some sort of green bean recipe.. we haven't decided on one yet.. The contenders are: Fried Green Breans with wasabe ranch for dipping, AB's green bean "casserole" recipe, my own everyday green beans with bacon and onions that we love, oooorrrr I kinda want to give the apple cider green beans that RR made in the episode a try.

As for a bread.. probably a sweet yeast dinner roll. :) Seems we have a few starches and not so much veggies. Eh, it's a holiday.. WHO CARES?!?! LMAO Besides.. there is squash in the risotto. That's gotta count for something. And there will be celery, carrots and onions in the dressing. So there. Lots of veggies. :P

Dessert.. My very own Mile High Apple Pie. This is the one thing I don't change. :) I love apple pie, and my apple pie freakin rocks, but only seem to make it for Thanksgiving, Christmas and occasionally Easter. So, I have to make it. LOL And a cake or cupcakes of some kind.. Because The Pickiest Eater in All The Land doesn't like pie. *eyeroll* The Sister will probably make pumpkin pie. :)

And for a little snack type thing for during the cooking (can't let the chef get low blood sugar afterall! LOL).. We'll do Raspberry Chipolte sauce over cream cheese with crackers.. and I'm going to attempt to recreate that Boom Boom sauce from Chuy's, with chips. Or I'll just go buy some. LOL And maybe some sweet and sour meatballs because the kids adore them. :) See.. there is gonna be so much food, we don't NEED a whole turkey! :)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Hanging with the teenagers...

Yesterday was The Bestfriends birthday.. And since I got her hooked on the Twilight books, we decided to go check out the New Moon primier for her birthday. So we got a huge group of girls together.. Some of our friends and her co-workers, plus her daughter and the daughters of some friends. In all we had about 16 people in our party.

We started off at a Mexican Food place called Chuy's.. Took them forever to put a 20 top together for us.. but we sat in the bar's happy hour section and had Mexican Martinis and a free nacho bar while we waited. We ate outside on the patio..Texas can rock.. where else can you eat outside in November with only 2 stand heaters needed to heat the entire patio? It was great.. I had the special.. Hatch Chicken Enchiladas.. the sauce was a queso blanco sauce with hatch peppers. I tried a bite of my friends Veggie Enchilada with Boom Boom Sauce* and it was amazing.. totally ordering that next time. 3 Shakers of martinis later.. we were on our way to the theatre.

We were smart and pre-bought and printed out our tickets earlier this week, so we didn't have to wait in line at the box office, which was good.. because it was sold out for all showings. LOL It was wall to wall girls in the theatre, everyone all queued up waiting to take seats in the theatre.. Older women like us, teenagers, grade schoolers.. it was actually kind of fun being part of the crowd. We got pretty decent seats inside the theatre, and the handicap spaces were directly in front of us, unused. So instead of seats in front of us, there was just a handrail bar.. that made a handy food rest! The movie was really good.. I liked the first Twilight movie a lot.. but this was one even better. The acting was better, the effects were better.. and Jacob black.. was *better*. YUM. I've always been very pro "Team Edward".. but Taylor Lautner made it really hard not to switch sides to "Team Jacob". LOL Halfway through the movie my bestfriends daughter, The Niece, had to go to the bathroom, so I went with her. Neither of us wanted to miss the movie, so we held hands and ran through the theatre to the restrooms.. And I was in 3 inch heels. LOL Never once missed a beat.. There were tons of girls camped outside on of the theatre doors, waiting for their showing to start.. One asked "How is it?!" and The Neice laughed when I replied "It's awesome, you're going to love it!" as we ran by. LOL It was one of those memories The Neice and I will laugh about for years to come. :)

All in all, it was a pretty great way to celebrate The Bestfriend's birthday.. we all had a really great time. :)

*The best I can tell (and I'm usually pretty good at being able to figure out what's in something by tasting it), Boom Boom sauce is a white cheese queso with cilantro, jalapeno (maybe serrano)peppers, and I *think* it had tomatillo salsa in it.. I tasted something tangy that really reminded me of tomatillos so I'm pretty sure that's what it is. Either way, it was this spicy hot wayyyy yummy cheesy sauce that I really really liked and need to figure out how to make.

Friday Five.. (a little late!)

1. Are you a Black Friday shopper?

Hadn't ever done it until last year, and I got so many *really* good deals, I'm definitly going again this year.. I mean, Hello, I bought Heather and Hannah a winter coat last year for $5 each on Black Friday.

2. What was your favorite childhood toy? (Think Easy Bake Oven, Cabbage Patch Kid, Shrinky Dinks, etc.)

Definitly my easy bake oven! Followed closely by my Cabbage Patch dolls. :)

3. Favorite Christmas movie?

White Christmas, with Bing Crosby.

4. What is the "must have" item on your Christmas list this year?

The pair of BCBGengeration black pumps I posted on here a couple weeks back. And a 6Qt Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven, I'd prefer a red oval one, but any would do. I would *love* the Le Cruset one.. but at $500-$650, it's very unlikely. But there is a decent Lodge brand one at Walmart for $60 that would do me just fine instead. :) The orange Rachel Ray oval one would also work, but it's $80.

5. Do you go all out with decorations or do you keep it simple and classy?

I love Christmas.. And I *LOVE* my Christmas decorations. We have red and white lights for the house, wooden snowmen and gingerbread soldiers for the yard, and inside all of my normal everyday decor comes down and gets boxed up. I have 4 big rubbermaid totes of Christmas decorations for inside. From my "wonky santas" to my holly berry china that replaces the regular china in the hutch.. Our christmas tree is filled with ornaments from my childhood and orniments that I buy my kids each year. There are wreaths, and garland, and red bows on everything. We have an entire collection of snowmen and santas and snow globes. And the nutcrackers that I started collecting as a girl. Candles everywhere.. It's really pretty. My house turns into "Chrstimas town" during the holidays.. It's beautiful, and you can't help but feel like it's Christmas. When you live somewhere as hot as Texas, you have to find that Christmas spirit somewhere when it's 80 degrees outside and you really want to put on a bathingsuit. LOL Plus my mom was big on going all out for the holidays and I've carried that on.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Breakfast of Champions

So I'm eating chocolate chip cookies for breakfast.. Yeah, I know.. Really healthy, The Mamma.

In other news.. I found my younger brother on Facebook! My brother and I have a half brother, by our real father. He is 12 years younger than me, and has always lived in another state. I've never really known him, because I don't have much of a relationship with The Real Father. Well, I don't have one at all any longer. But even as a kid, he just wasn't there for me as my dad. My step-dad was my daddy. The Real Father lived in Colorado, and the extent of his parenting was 5 or 6 weeks every summer... and that ended by the time I was 12 or 13... right around the time my little brother came along. He never really called me, except on my birthday. He wrote letters to me each week for a while, when I was in 2nd grade.. But again, it didn't last. He always thought I should be the one calling him.. and I'm sorry, but it's not a childs responsibility to keep a relationship going. He didn't have time for me, so I don't really have any interest in him now. Because of this, I've never really known The Younger Brother.

Well, I found him on Facebook.. I was pretty excited to find him... and shocked to see how grown up he is now. My last memory of him was when he was 6.. and before that I hadn't seen him since he was a baby.. And now he's 18, almost 19! I requested to add him as a friend, and told him that if he was interested, I'd really like to get to know one another. I was happy when he accepted my request and added me as a facebook friend. We chatted for the first time last night, and while it was sort of awkward at first, soon we were laughing. Before going to bed, I look through all of the stuff on his profile.. in his notes section, he's got some very interesting essays. For 18 years old.. he's pretty deep. After reading through the stuff he had there.. I felt a connection.. a real bond. My little brother is a LOT like me. Some of the things he wrote in a "25 things about me" post were amazing.. stuff I could have written about myself! He's got really interesting views on society, and he's extremely mature, in my opinion. My older brother and I are not very alike at all. Polar opposites, really.. so to find out that I have a sibiling that is very much like me.. very thought provoking, very insightful, almost brooding.. but not in a bad way.. you can just tell he's a thinker. Like me. I can't even begin to explain my thought processes.. But you name it, and I've probably thought about it, and have an opinion about it.. He used those exact words in his post.. and they describe me to a tee. To read him describe himself that way.. It just really affirmed the fact that I have another brother. He's not just some far off person that I don't know. He's a sibiling that I have things in common with.. And I *really* like that. I can't even begin to explain how excited I am to know more about this amazing young man.

So, here's to getting to know The Brother. :)

Monday, November 16, 2009

How *could* he?!?!

This is what has happened to the last few peices of my beautiful orange marmalade cake.. I have no words to describe this...

Wait. Yes, I do. I have two words for this. Asshole Kid.

When asked why he destroyed what was left of my cake his answer was "To be funny." Ha. Ha. This is food murder. I was livid. To say the least. See if he gets a homemade cake this year on his bday. (Okay okay, we all know he will, but I'm mad, damnit!). Damn kid. This would be damn kid #2, Jason.


So I finally joined facebook, at the urging of The Bestfriend... and now I'm addicted to farmville. LOL I tried to play cafe world, but it keeps shutting my computer down.

Anyway... I found one of my bestfriends from highschool!! Turns out, she's been looking for me, too! I was afraid she wouldn't even remember me, so I signed the email with the nickname I used in highschool, just in case.. The last time we saw each other.. gosh, I think I was pregnant with Andy, maybe?? The last time we spoke on the phone, I was in the hospital pregnant and on bedrest with the twins. So, it's definitly been a while. I'm so happy to be reconnecting with her! The asshole ex husband made it very hard for me to have ANY friends, and when she went off to college, we really lost touch. So glad I found her! Now if I could just find Patcha...

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Prayer request for a dear friend..

I doubt that anyone besides The Bestfriend and JD actually read this blog.. but on the off chance that someone has followed my blog link from any of the websites I visit.. I have a request. If you are the praying kind, please say a prayer for my dear friend JD? She had to do something very difficult today, and is feeling very emotionally wrung out from it. Please say a prayer for her to help her sort through and process her day. Thank you very much for your prayers and good thoughts. :)

God doesn't like it when we're ugly...

Damnit all to hell! I am so freakin irritated right now. I have had car door drama the entire time I've had my car, which is about 10-11 months. First it wouldn't open unless you pulled up on the handle a certain way. Then that broke all together and you had to open it from the inside.. which means leaving the window down all the time, or opening the back door and reaching all the way to the front to open it.. which is what you have to do if it's raining outside and you can't leave the window open. SO annoying. The Husband tried to fix it for me a few months back.. he put a new handle on it, with no success. I've been nagging The Husband about this for the entire time I've had my car.. it's the problem with being a mechanic's wife.. MY car never gets fixed. *rolleyes* Well last week I went *off* on him about it. So today he takes the door panel off and messes with it.. and had it fixed!!! The door panel was still off, but he closed and opened it repeatedly.. and I opened it. I was SO excited. I started shouting "My car door opens! My car door opens!!" I called The Sister. I told all the kids. I texted The Bestfriend.. with a little snarky second text that said "and it only took 10 months of nagging!" Maybe that's where I went wrong. The Sister always says "God doesn't like it when we're ugly" anytime I say something snarky...

Boy is that true. Because the next thing I know, The Husband is kicking something across the garage and comes inside with a seriously pissed off look on his face. I asked what was wrong and he tells me the bad news. Once he got the door panel on, something happened. The door won't open. At all. From the outside OR the inside. He's going to call around for the part that broke and then he has to figure out how to get the door panel off without opening the door. Until then, I have to crawl in from the passenger seat and crawl out the same way. Fucking Awesome. I swear to God if I have to nag to get him to figure this out.. I will FREAK OUT.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Girl's Night

Tonight it's gonna be fried ravioli and lots of wine at The Bestfriend's house. We were hoping for an L word marathon..but the damn DVD did not come in the mail like it was supposed to. So, who knows what we'll watch.. maybe we'll play cards instead.. it's been a while since she's kicked my ass at gin. :) And I'll be taking a hefty portion of the leftover orange marmalade cake with me. mmmmmmmm

Conquering Souffle

AB's show tonight has inspired me. It was souffle. Cheese souffle to be exact. This takes me back to one of my very first huge kitchen disasters, I remember it like it was yesterday...

I have never conquered a souffle. Infact, I have only attempted it once. It was such a bad defeat that I swore I'd never try it again. I was 19, maybe 20. I had only been out on my own for a couple of years. I was a new mom, newly married (to the wrong man, I might add), and learning how run my own home. I loved cooking. I always have.. I had been cooking dinner for me and my parents since I was about 13, almost nightly by the time I was 16. I taught myself, with guidance from my mom and my dad and Julia Child on TV. And while my mom is a great cook.. she definitly never made souffles, or meringues or any sort of "foam" product. I was never really taught how to properly whip egg whites and then fold them into something. At that time, I thought "fold in" ment use the "fold" speed on my hand mixer. *gasp*!!!! I had never been taught otherwise. But for the most part I did okay in most all of my cooking adventures.

As a new mom and wife, and realizing it was now MY kitchen and I could buy and make what I wanted... I became adventurous. I became ambitious. I even created my own recipe for Mango Salsa. I was a rockstar, on top of the world.. thought I knew it all. LOL So one day I decide "I will make souffle!" I get out what at that time was my trusty food bible, the only cookbook worth using(OMG how misled I was!! LOL).. The good old fashioned red and white checked "Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook". It was just like my mom's and to me, it was Gospel. Even though it said to put walnuts in chicken enchiladas and I never quite figured that one out (that really should have been my first clue to run LOL). So got out eggs and cheese and my trusty hand mixer.. and God only knows what I used for a souffle dish. LOL

And I beat those poor egg whites to hell, before I started the cheese sauce. (do you know what happens to egg white foam if you don't use it within a couple minutes of creating it? LOL yeah.. try it sometime. It's pretty) And then.. Then I did the unthinkable.. I put that hand mixer on "fold" and combined that grainy, totally messed up because it was the first cheese sauce I ever made, souffle "base" with those egg whites.. and let her rip! Can't you just picture it in your head.. all those bubbles I created getting blown all to hell... Then I poured this runny mass into my dish(which I buttered with margarine from a tub and sprinkled with CANNED parmesan cheese because at that point in my life, I had no idea there was any other kind LOL), stuck it in the oven, slammed the oven door shut, banging it nice and hard and set a timer.

And since I had a little while to kill.. I played with Justin. he was a baby at the time.. right around the age when they run around in those walker on wheels things. We played his favorite game. I chased him all through the kitchen laughing and careening back and forth on the tile. You know, ramming his walker into the oven and cabinets over and over again(you can see it falling before it ever had a chance, huh? LOL)... And I opened the oven repeatedly to check on things. You know, to see how it was coming along, if it was rising, if it was browning, letting all the heat out of the oven. LOL When I pulled out my sad deflated soupy mess of a "souffle", I was defeated. I didn't understand what went wrong. I did everything exactly as that cookbook said. Didn't I? I whipped, I folded (that's what that speed on the hand mixer means, right?? LOL).. why did this all go wrong?

Then the stupid ex husband comes in, sees my disappointing mess and makes fun of me. So, I tossed it down the sink and admitted defeat. I just didn't have the chops to create souffle. And I have never given it a go since.

Until now.

Well, not right now. But soon. Even though I have since learned many many important things about creating foams, folding (which means by hand with spatula not a hand mixer thats going to murder your bubbles LOL).. it has never really dawned on me that I understand all the things I did wrong the first try. Tonight I was watching AB make his cheese souffle and realized "I have all the skills for this.. this is not too hard for me.. why have I not reattempted this?!". It was simply inexperience that led to such a huge failure the first time. I understand the science behind a souffle and all the requirements to pull one off. I didn't back then. Much older and wiser now...Thank God for the Food Network. It's time to right a serious wrong in my culinary reputation. It's time to conquer The Souffle.

Chocolate souffle, I think. But that could just be the PMS talking.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Take-out and Soaps

The Husband went fishing. The kids all made themselves grilled ham and cheese sammies and stuff for dinner.. So I treated myself to some chinese takeout- spicy orange chicken, white rice, hot and sour soup and some crab rangoons. And the Clifhanger Friday marathon for all my soaps I missed this afternoon is on Soapnet.. I'm camped out in my room, laptop in my lap, surrounded by yummy take-out. Now if I could just get my internet to stay logged in long enough to sign into MSN messenger and see if my favorite Canadian is around this evening, things would be perfect!

Okay, yeah.. gonna have to take the leftovers (holy cow they brought me a TON of food LOL) to the kitchen.. wayyyyy to tempting sitting right next to me and my tummy already hurts from eating too much. LOL

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Cake Porn

Now if that doesn't blow your skirt up, I just don't know what will. ;)

Oh man oh man oh man...

So I finally cut myself a slice of cake. Oh my freakin word. YUMMY. It wasn't too sweet, thanks to the whipped cream frosting.. although I think an orange cream cheese frosting might be a little better and will try that next time. The cake is perfect in texture.. Like a cake mix cake!! Duncan Hines doesn't do it better than me anymore!! I especially loved the bits of orange rind all through out thanks to the orange marmalade. I've been dying to try Ina's orange marmalade recipe, so I think I'm going to give it a try and make this cake again with homemade marmalade.. But even with the store bought kind it was really good. Really happy with the results overall, and I'm glad I made the few changes that I made- I added an extra egg yolk because my eggs were on the small side, and I added orange zest in a few different places as opposed to just in the cake, as the original recipe called for. I also changed the method of things in one or two places, and the honey was my idea in both spots I used it. :) This is definitly going to be my new go-to cake to take to any gathering that we're invited to.. So bright and fresh and oh so yummy.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


My kitchen is *trashed*. The dishwasher is full, and there is still tons of crap all over the counters. But I have the most gorgeous cake sitting on a cake stand in my fridge, and a huge pan of stuffed shells left over from dinner. Why do I cook enough for a party when it's just for Dave, me and a couple of the kids? Oh yeah, because I only do "tribal size". LOL

The stuffed shells version was the bomb. Pretty labor intensive, but way yummy. The Husband was pretty excited. We haven't eaten the cake yet... it has to sit in the fridge for at least two hours.. and it's only been an hour. I'm not sure it's going to make it that last hour.. LOL It looks so pretty. :) Triple layered.. lots of butter.. 10.. yes TEN eggs. (well not 10 whole eggs.. 5 were only yolks but it sounds more dramatic to say 10 eggs lol).. Orange zest, some mexican vanilla.. And each layer has been soaked in orange simple syrup. And there is orange marmalade between the layers. And a fresh whipped cream frosting made with sour cream, orange zest, super fine sugar and a bit of honey. Only frosted the sides.. put marmalade on the top with a pretty border. It looks pretty awesome, if I do say so. :) Not the best picture, had to use my phone..

So here's the Recipe...

The Mamma's Version of "Esther's Orange Marmalade Cake"


For the cake
1 cup unsalted butter, softened, more for greasing the pans
3 1/4 cups cake flour, more for dusting the pans
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 2/3 cups granulated sugar
5 large eggs, at room temperature
5 large egg yolks, at room temperature
2/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
2 teaspoons vanilla extract (I used mexican vanilla)
1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature

For the orange syrup
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (about 2 juicy oranges)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp orange zest

For the filling
2 (12-ounce) jars orange marmalade
1 tablespoon honey

For the frosting
1 cup heavy cream, chilled
4 to 6 tablespoons superfine sugar,, to taste (you can make this yourself with regular sugar in a blender)
1 tablespoon honey
2 tsp grated orange zest
2 tsp vanilla (I used mexican)
1 cup sour cream, chilled

To make the cake:
Preheat oven to 350. Butter three 9 in cake pans (I had to use 10 in pans because one of my 9 inch pans is missing). Line the bottom of the pans with parchment paper, butter the parchment and then dust the pans with flour, shaking out the excess. Next sift together the cake flour, baking powder and salt. Sift two more times. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter on medium speed until light in color, about 4 min. Slowly pour in the sugar, pouring in a steady stream. Turn mixer to high and beat 4 min, scraping sides of bowl at least once. Lower speed to medium and add the whole eggs, one at a time, beating after each egg. Follow with the egg yolks, one at a time. Scrape the sides of the bowl and beat on medium speed for 2 more minutes. Turn mixer to low and add the oil, orange zest and vanilla, beat for 1 min. Fold in half the flour mixture with a rubber spatula, followed by half of the buttermilk. Repeat with second half of flour and buttermilk.

Pour the batter into the prepared pans, rapping each pan on the counter twice to remove air bubbles. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes until a tooth pick comes out clean. Cool in the pans on wire racks for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, poke holes in the cakes (still in the pans) with a tooth pick at 1/2 inch intervals.

For the Syrup:
Stir together orange juice, sugar, and zest in a small sauce pan. Heat to boiling and simmer just long enough to melt the sugar. Remove from heat and cool, strain through a fine sieve into a measuring cup. When cakes are ready, spoon syrup evenly over the cakes. Cool cakes completely in the pans.

For the Filling:
Heat the marmalade and honey in a small sauce pan just until the marmalade melts. When the cakes are cool, invert first layer onto a cake plate. Peel off the parchment and top with 1/3 of the marmalade filling. Repeat with the second and third layers of cake. On the top layer, spread the marmalade (I like it to be just a little bit thicker on the top layer) to about 1/2 inch from the edge of the cake.

For the Frosting:
In a chilled metal mixing bowl and the wire wisk attachement chilled.. Oh high speed, whip heavy whipping cream with sugar, honey, zest and vanilla until thick and holds a peak. Turn the mixer to low and mix in the sour cream. Frost the sides only of the cake, swirling a little. With a large star tip, pipe a border around the top of the cake, leaving the marmalade exposed. Chill for at least two hours before serving. Enjoy! :)

Cake Love

Okay.. So if this cake turns out as gorgeous as I think it's going to.. I'm pretty sure this is going to be my go-to recipe for scratch cake. (Recipe to follow after I type it in my own words)

Just the batter is freakin YUMMY. Oh, and my new extra fine micro plane grater... Freakin AWESOME for zesting citrus. I mowed right through two oranges like it was nothing. In love with that new toy.

And I finally decided to give AB's trick for measuring and cutting parchment paper to fit a round cake pan. (AB is my main food man... Alton Brown of Good Eats.. be still my heart, I love that nerdy man!) He demonstrated this technique in the Coconut Cake episode. Where you tear off a peice that fits across the pan, and then fold in half, and then in half on the corner (hard to explain, but it ends up looking sorta like a paper airplane) and then you put the point in the center of the pan, and cut it to fit the edge.. when you unfold it, you have a perfect circle that fits exactly in the bottom of the round cake pan.. I will do it and post a pic later.. anyway.. I'll be damned if that wasn't really easy and worked like a charm! No more tracing in pencil and then cutting out for me. Little paper airplane trick worked way better!

Cakes are probably almost done.. I better go make orange simple syrup and sour cream whipped frosting. Excited yet?? you should be. :)

Being Betty Crocker

Today is shaping up to be a Betty Crocker kind of day. For dinner I'm going to make the stuffed shells version of Cheesy Autumn Deliciousness.... And for dessert.. I'm thinking an orange marmalade cake.

JD.. have you ever read any of the "Mitford" books by Jan Karon?? I was reading them when I was on bedrest with the twins.. If not, then you should.. it's a lovely little series about a small town preacher and his life, the people of the town, etc.. Anyway, in the books there is this famous "Orange Marmalade Cake" made by a character named Esther. Well.. after a quick google search, I found out that Jan Karon actually wrote a "Mitford" cookbook, to accompany the books. So, now I'm armed with the recipe and headed to the kitchen to bake... Let's just hope it doesn't put The Husband into a diabetic coma like it did to Father Tim in the books. LOL

Monday, November 9, 2009

Shoe Lust

Oh dear God in Heaven. I'm breathing hard. I'm drooling. I think I might even be a little turned on. I just found THE pair of shoes on Oh god. Just.. Well.. Just LOOK at them!!!!

Oh man. I love the way the heel is shaped. I love that it's a 4.5 inch heel. I love that it has a 1/2 in curved platform. They look COMFY. They look like my original peeps, with a closed toe.

I MUST HAVE THESE!!!!!! If they sell out before I can scrounge the money up for them.. I will die. God I haven't shoe lusted this hard in a long time. And to think, I was just online looking at boots. I found a few pairs that I loved, but nothing invoked shoe lust in me like these did.

Lori.. You must make sure Dave understands.. These are like the peeps.. they BETTER be under the tree. I need them. I really really do. :P

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Sick again :(

So I have the freakin plague again. And it's Dave's fault. He started feeling sick last week.. I told him to keep his cooties away from me. I just got over being sick, I did NOT want it again. So a couple nights later he starts trying to "put the moves on me".. And I told him I did not want to have sex while he had cooties.. and besides, I was dealing with a three day long migraine and wasn't in the mood. So he starts rubbing my neck, and my head and my face (omg! who knew?!?) to make me give in... and of course I did. *eyeroll* And now I have his cooties. It's not fair. He is so not getting any booty a while for this. LOL

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Freakin' Dog.. Freakin' Kids.

I'm not sure who I'm more pissed of with... The Idiot Dog who keeps running off.. Or The Kids who keep letting him out the front door. So now there is a new rule: You put The Idiot Dog in his freakin crate BEFORE you leave this house. That way, when you are coming back inside, he can't push his way passed you.

And yes, he really can push his way out.. He's a 80+ lbs (I actually think it's closer to 100lbs) Lab/Pit Bull mix. He's a big boy. Big and STUPID. I swear, he's got all of the lab sweetness... but NONE of the lab intelligence. All brawn.. NO brains. When he makes it out the front door.. it's like his own person rendition of "Born Free" as he takes off running, quickly evading anyone who tries to cut him off.. He's totally got that lab agility and running at top speed down. None of the pit akwardness. Problem is.. He's HUGE. Really really tall... with this huge pit shaped head and big floppy lab ears. So he tends to look scary when he's in a dead run at you..And knocks anyone in his path down. And keep away is his favorite passtime. Especially when it's "keep myself away from anyone who's trying to get me back inside".

We've discovered the one sure fire way of getting him back inside... Problem is.. It involves me getting the car.. chasing him down on the street behind us, opening the back door, whistling for him to get in for a ride..and then driving back around the block to home..and chasing him from the car to the front door and then into his crate for a time out. The thing is.. I think he's doing it just to get to go for the car ride. Maybe he's not so dumb afterall.

Friday 5

1. What is your dream job?
I would love to have my own small restaurant. And to have Guy Fieri come and eat my food. LOL

2. What song could you play over and over?
Depends on my mood.. If I'm cooking or cleaning and in the mood to sing loud and like an idiot... Bohemian Rhapsody. Hands down. I freakin LOVE that song. My kids crack up at me when I am in the kitchen, cooking and dancing and singing at the top of my lungs to Queen. If I'm feeling thoughtful, or sad, or missing someone in particular, then I listen to Elsewhere by Sarah McLachlan over and over again.

3. Do you prefer to talk on the phone or text (or email)?
I am not a fan of talking on the phone. Unless it's to my mom. Her and I can talk forever. If I can't talk to my favorite people in person (which is my preference).. it depends on the person. For The Bestfriend or The Sister, it's usually texting. For The Canadian, definitly email or MSN IM. Though I miss the yahoo smilies we used to have. ;) For The Husband.. Well, I like texting, he prefers phone.

4. What is your must have beauty product?
Eyeliner. I'll leave the house without putting on any beauty products, except eyeliner. I feel naked and look dead without it. Close second would be mascara.

5. What is your favorite Michael Jackson song?
I'll be there. I think that's the name of it. Its from when he was a kid, so it might actually be a Jackson 5 song.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Girl Scout Store

So, The Bestfriend and I went to the Girl Scout Store today. I swear, it was like I was a little kid again. LOL I found about 400 things that I'm pretty sure The Pretty Girls *need* to have. I got them some fun patches today.. and I'm totally planning to go back tomorrow for a couple more. My girls are gonna have the cutest damn decorated vests EVER! LOL And there were T shirts that were so freakin adorable. I really want to get them a T shirt and maybe a hoodie for Christmas. And of course they NEED the Brownie Quest bracelets. LOL I'm pretty sure I'm going to end up being a troop mom or leader or whatever.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Baked Pastas

I have to say... Baked pasta dishes rank right up there with puppy breath and roses on my birthday. Tonight I made meatballs out of turkey italian sweet sausage and cooked them in my super devine red sauce.. and boiled up some low carb penne rigate. I didn't cook the penne all the way, though. I pulled it out of the water and finished cooking it IN the red sauce with the meatballs.. Can we say YUMMY? I buttered up a baking dish, poured in the pasta, meatballs and sauce.. then threw in a good pound of cubed fresh whole milk mozzarella. And just for good measure.. I put about a cup and a half of shredded mozzarella on top. Tossed it all in the oven for about 20.. and it's quite possibly heaven on earth. When every person at the table moans and says "this is so good" at pretty much the same time... you know you did good. :) Well almost every person.

The Pickiest Eater in All The Land ate his high fiber cereal and drank an Activia...claiming constipation and that he really needs his cereal and yogurt. Whatever. I'm pretty sure the hospital must have screwed up and gave me the wrong baby.. because he doesn't like red sauce. Let me rephrase that.. He LOATHES tomato based pasta sauces (except on pizza.. the hypocrit) and acts as though he's choking to death when he's forced to eat them. I'm not sure how a child with half my genetic make up can not like any kind of Italian food.. but he hates it. Honestly, I'm over it. It's not worth getting my panties in a wad while he insults my awesome cooking. If he'd rather eat cardboard, aka Fiber One cereal, than my amazing out of this world pasta.. that's his loss and more pasta for me at midnight when I take just a fork to the fridge and eat cold pasta straight from the tupperware in the dark. LOL

Sunday, November 1, 2009

I missed Ina!!!

Oh man. The Bestfriend texts me today and says "Ina is downtown signing books". WHAT!?!?!?! How in the hell did I miss that my kitchen hero, Mrs. Ina Garten herself, was in Austin, doing a book signing at a book fair?!?!?!? I'm so sad that I missed Ina. If I hadn't had a raging migraine when I found out.. I probably would have rushed down there. I just can't believe that I missed the chance to finally meet her. It's seriously been a huge dream of mine for a really long time... right alongside going to her house, in East Hampton, and getting to see her huge ass pantry in person. Just her pantry is bigger than my dining room and kitchen put together. I really hope I get another chance to meet her.

H'ween and more!

Halloween was great :) The party was great.. not many people came.. The Bestfriends, and The Friends that used to live across the street. But between the three sets of parents there were 9 kids.. so it was pretty great. :) My friend, K, didn't get here till after 10.. so her DH, M, hung out with us pretty much all day and took their two kids trick or treating with The Husbands (that's when The Husband is with his bestfriend, who is mine's husband.. clear as mud? lol) and the twins. The Bestfriend and I even got over an hour of *quiet*.. just us, some wine and a movie. It was great.

The Husband did not come home with an earring this afternoon. But he tried. The ear piercer lady was at lunch when he went to walmart to get it done. So, when I went to walmart to pick up a few snacks... I also picked up the home ear piercing kit (only $5!!) and a pack of small silver ear piercing studs.. And I pierced The Husbands ear myself!!!! And then.. a little while later... I pierced Justin's ear, too. (JD, did your jaw drop??? LOL) I let Justin go to walmart today, and when I was picking out the earring for Dave and getting the guy to ring me up a piercing kit, Justin starts working me. He's wanted an earring for a lonnnnnng time. He he looked at me when he asked and it just hit me.. He really is getting older. He looks older. He finally ACTS older. And after 3 failed spelling tests, he totally cracked down and got a 110 this week. His behaviour has been mostly wonderful (no kid's perfect). So, I caved inside, but I didn't tell him. I called Dave and talked to Dave about it.. we both agreed. He was so cool about when we got home, too.. because I didn't have time to do it right away. There were cupcakes to make and frost, cookies to frost, meatalls to get in the crockpot (hell no I didn't make homemade meatballs this time), and kids to get in costumes.. which involved hot rollers for The Pretty Girls. And pink hair glitter. :D And he didn't bug me about it. He didn't ask "when are we gonna do it" one single time. He just played it cool, totally helped me bust out some cookies.. I did the icing, he did the sprinkles. Then, he asked if he could go ahead and go to his friend's house so they go start trick or treating. I said "what about your earring? Don't you want to do it before?".. he says "naaa. I'm wearing a mask and a hood.. no one will see it anyway.. We can do it when I get back." WHO IS THIS KID?!?!?! It just totally solidified my decision. He was acting so mature about it, so he deserved it. :)

Dave had me do his before he took the twins t-o-t'ing. He didn't even flinch.. Then when it was in, I loved it instantly. I think he did too. We had to take the piercing stud out, to put a gold hoop in (just for tonight).. and the original plan was, we'd just take the hoop out and let the hole close back up. But he had me put the stud back in instead. ;) He said he wants me to find him a wrench earring and I so am! I feel bad for jacking with it twice in one night.. you could tell that part is what hurt for Dave. We won't mess with it again until Christmas, when his 6 weeks is up. He told me that he wants a wrench shaped earring, and I am SO finding one for his stocking this year. :P

The other boys are kind of wanting their's done too. I'm not sure yet. I feel like I made Justin wait so long , it isn't fair to him that they get it right off the bat when he does. But, it's not as huge a deal as being the first to get an MP3 player, or his own PSP, he'll be the first to get a cell phone, a car, etc. But this isn't as a huge a deal as that, so I'm not sure yet. Plus it's kind of Daddy and Justin's thing right now. And they don't have much. Andy and Dave are tight. Andy is a little mini me of Dave.. and follows him around like a puppy. So of course since Daddy is keeping the earring and Justin got to have one.. He thinks he needs one too. I told him I'd think about it. I think I'm going to make him wait at least a few weeks. He already has tons in common with daddy. They already have all kinds of stuff that's "just them" because Andy is interested in everything Dave does (fishing, watching races and old westerns, and especially fixing cars). Any time Dave is out working on a car.. Andy is right there.. red shop rag in his back pocket and messing with daddy's wrenches. Jason is kind of off and on about wanting one. I think he is just caught up in the excitement. He's going to forget about it tomorrow and not care. Half the time he said he didn't want one tonight... so I don't think he really does. I think I'm going to keep it just a Justin and Daddy thing for a little while... at least a month or two. Maybe around Christmas, if Andy is still wanting it, one of his Christmas presents can be a box of piercing earrings. I don't know. Whaddya think?

Good Grief this turned into a novel. Eyes bleeding yet? I have no business being awake. I got 4 hours of sleep last night, and never managed a nap today. It's 2:2oam and I've been up since 7:30 this morning, yet I'm still trying to unwind. Pretty sure there is an email in my hotmail to read, though.. So with that.. Bonne Nuit, Buona Notte, Good Night :)