Month: September 2007

She shoulda said she had a torpedo in the hole…

Floy was in charge of the kids tonight. He was giving me a little bloggy break so I could catch up on some blog reading. I have fallen waa-ay behind since my brother fell ill a few weeks ago.

Anyway…Floy came into our bedroom tonight with his hands held up in front of him like he had just contracted the bubonic plague, a horrified look on his face, making strange motions with his arms in an attempt to get my attention and open the bathroom door for him so he could wash up.

It seems that he was giving our 3 year old a bath and she did a “doodie” in the tub. (She has never done that before – this must have been a special gift just for daddy.) Floy fished it out with his hands and promptly plopped it in the toilet before running walking calmly to my end of the house to wash up. Meanwhile, he left our daughter in the tub to get herself out.

I’m telling you this because as both a scrapbooker and a blogger, I’m dismayed for two reasons:
1.) I wanted to take a photo for her scrapbook , and
2.) I wanted to watch him perform this amazing feat – I’ve never seen anyone of the male persuasion even come close to touching a doodie with a ten foot pole.

Men are so squeamish, have you noticed? Or is it just me? I have washed out cloth diapers in doo doo water with my bare hands, thankyouverymuch. I’m not afraid of a little bowel movement. But she still should have warned him she it was coming…I so wish I could have seen the look on his face…this is the stuff parenting books are made of.

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Look! An Actual Post!

“What is written without effort is in general read without pleasure.” — Samuel Johnson

Now, don’t faint and fall out on me, but I have actually prepared a “real” blog post for your viewing pleasure this morning. Well, I don’t know if it will be pleasurable for you or not, as that’s all a matter of opinion…but I digress. On with the post!

As I have looked around the blogosphere lately, I have noticed a very common thread running throughout many blogs: blog authors apologizing for “lack of blog fodder” and “bloggy breaks” due to writer’s block. (guilty as charged, your honor)

I’m often plagued by lack of inspiration. I believe that there really is no such thing as “writer’s block”…it’s simply my inability to harness this team of wild horses running around in my head to create an interesting entry. Or…da da da dun….laziness on my part.

If I was more ambitious, I could jot notes to myself during the day when funny and interesting little things happen (which isn’t a bad idea) instead of sitting down at the computer staring at a blank screen for two hours, waiting for “inspiration” to suddenly hit me so I can write something even mildly entertaining.

I could also “write ahead” and save drafts so I’ll have something for those days when I am a little busy or uninspired. I could have a list of memory joggers or even surf the web for inspiration in other places.

There are so many things I could do, but don’t. Instead, I stare at the screen and that darned black cursor blinking against the stark white background, seemingly insinuating with every blink, “bet. you. can’t.”

So what do you do for inspiration? How do you “beat bloggy block”?

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Have you heard about this?

I thought I’d try something to help increase my traffic – not that I am counting those of you that visited my blog today. (48 today, down from 119 two weeks ago…ahem)

Have you heard about Blog Rush? You can see a sample of what it would look like on your blog if you scroll down and look to the left. You can choose the category you would like to be displayed in so that you don’t end up with something crazy in your sidebar…all posts should pretty much be related to what yours is. So check it out — what could it hurt?

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Not Intelligent Design

I am married to one of the most intelligent men I’ve ever known. Sometimes it can be frustrating (like when I’m trying to “win” a discussion by throwing out useless facts and figures), but most often it is enlightening and refreshing to be married to someone who is knowledgeable on a plethora of subjects.

When we got married, I had no idea he was “called to preach”. He shared that little tidbit with me about a month after our wedding day in a Baptist book store. Although I had always considered myself a ‘Christian’ and could talk the talk, I was shocked and replied, “I’m not “called” to be a preacher’s wife!” And he told me firmly, “If you married me, you are.” So, like most everything else about him, I accepted it and eventually embraced it. We have been married for over 6 years now and I am so thankful that he is a rock solid man of God. It is because of his testimony that I got saved when I was pregnant with our son. Our mission now is to see all three of our children saved at a young age (our eldest has made a profession of faith) and to disciple them and train them up to be Godly girls and boy. That sounded wierd, but we only have one boy.

I told you all of that simply to say this: my husband has started a blog here. It’s called “Foundations in Truth” and will be bibliocentric and focus on the Genesis account of Creation. He’s quite well read on this and has done several teachings in our Church on the Genesis account – the kids in our JR Church loved the series. This is a ministry for us – something that when we are able to, we’d like to share around the world. If you are so inclined, check him out and let him know you were there. Bookmark him, because I promise you, if you are the least bit interested in Creation, you will be riveted.

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Cooking up Hot Stuff

Since I have declared that September is the month I am bringing hot back, I figured what better way to start than to cook something really good for my husband. Truer words have never been spoken than, “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.” I have never met a man that could resist some good cooking. So, I was surfing and came across something that is going to revolutionize the way I cook lasagna. BakersEdge has a super duper lasagna pan that keeps everything from slipping and sliding around when it’s cut (which may not be a big deal to you, but I personally hate the way all the cheese and good stuff oozes out when I cut into it!) It’s not available yet, but I’ll keep checking back, you can be sure.

Check this out:

They also have a pans for baking brownies. The part I like best about their pans is that you get “edges” on every piece…who doesn’t love the edge? (and no, they aren’t paying me to say any of this). Check them out here.

And because I feel like sharing – here is a great recipe I got from Emeril and the Food Network for lasagna, tried and approved by me. It is rather a pain to make, but if you have the time and the money, it is well worth it. I have not made it in a long time, but my memory is good – this is the best lasagna I have ever had. One thing to note: use the best cheeses (I substitute beef for veal) and go LIGHT on the salt, because by the time you cook it, it’s plenty salty, believe me, especially if you use the veal.)

Emeril’s Lasagna
2 cups fresh ricotta
8 ounces grated Provolone
8 ounces grated Mozzarella
8 ounces grated Romano
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
1 tablespoon chiffonade of fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 recipe of Emeril’s Meat Sauce, recipe follows
1/2 pound grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 package of dried lasagna noodles

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a mixing bowl, combine the ricotta, Provolone, Mozzarella, Romano, egg, milk, basil and garlic. Mix well. Season with salt and pepper. To assemble, spread 2 1/2 cups of the meat sauce on the bottom of a deep dish lasagna pan. Sprinkle 1/4 of the grated cheese over the sauce. Cover the cheese with 1/4 of the dried noodles. Spread a 1/4 of the cheese filling evenly over the noodles. Repeat the above process with the remaining ingredients, topping the lasagna with the remaining sauce. Place in the oven and bake until bubbly and golden, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes before serving. Slice and serve.

Emeril’s Meat Sauce:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 pound ground beef
1/3 pound ground veal
1/3 pound ground pork
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 cups finely chopped onions
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
1/2 cup finely chopped carrot
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
2 (28-ounce) can of peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes
1 small can tomato paste
4 cups beef stock or water
2 sprigs of fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons dried basil
Pinch of crushed red pepper
2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano

In a large nonreactive saucepan, over medium heat, add the oil. In a mixing bowl, combine the meat. Season with salt and pepper and mix well. When the oil is hot, add the meat and brown for 4 to 6 minutes. Add the onions, celery, and carrots. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until the vegetables are soft. Add the garlic and tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Continue to cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk the tomato paste with the stock and add to the tomatoes. Add the thyme, bay leaves, oregano, basil and red pepper. Mix well. Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce the heat to medium and simmer for about 2 hours. Stir occasionally and add more liquid if needed. During the last 30 minutes or cooking, reseason with salt and pepper and stir in the cheese. Remove from the heat and let sit for 15 minutes before serving.

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