Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Pumpkin Bread

A week or so ago a friend on Facebook asked for my recipe for Pumpkin Bread.  I got this recipe when we lived in Illinois and my husband was in graduate school.  A friend of mine there went to regular meetings for La Leche League and at one of those meetings someone brought this bread and shared the recipe.  It's the best recipe I've ever had for pumpkin bread.  I've tried others "just in case" but this one is the bomb.

3 1/3 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
3 cups sugar
1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
4 eggs
2/3 cup water
16-29 oz. pumpkin*

Sift the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until smooth and blended.  Grease 2 pans with unsalted butter, Pam, whatever you like to use.  Divide the batter between the pans and bake at 350 degrees for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.*

*The original recipe calls for 16 oz. of pumpkin but I only buy the big 29 oz. cans of it.  I used to add the entire 29 oz. to the recipe but now maybe I'll use most of the pumpkin--20 oz.   I eyeball it.  It makes the bread really moist but it takes longer to bake.  You just have to watch it closely after it's been baking for an hour.

False Alarm

I'm not pregnant.

Monday, November 21, 2011


I'm 43 years old and my period is 5 days late.  My youngest is 10.  My oldest is 17.  What kind of hell on earth am I looking at? 

I'll be the oldest mom at everything.  Everyone will ask if they are my grandchild.

I haven't changed a diaper for 7 years. 

I don't know if my poor little boobies can take another year of a child hanging off of them.

I don't know if I can survive the up all nights, the pooping, the Terrible Two's.

I don't know if I can take a 50 pound weight gain, more stretch marks, debilitating heartburn. 

I don't know if I can take another natural childbirth at home.

How am I supposed to get back into shape?  How am I supposed to run a couple of Ragnars next year?

I will be 61 years old when this child graduates from high school.  61!!!  That's only 4 years till retirement!

If I have one do I have to have another so they don't grow up as an only child?

The braces. 

The maturation talks. 



First date. 


Scared of the dark.

Teaching them to read.


High School.

Junior High.

I was hoping to finally get out of PTA.


Maybe it's menopause.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


My dog is laying at the foot of my bed snoring.  Loudly.  She even has that "ccccaw shoo" sound going on.  It's kind of cute.

But do you know what's not cute?  Sleeping in a hotel room with Darth Madar and her oxygen machine and Snorey McSnore Snore who needs a C-pap machine! 

My mother's old oxygen machine literally made her sound like Darth Vadar--Ho perrrrr, Ho perrrrr--when she was on it.  Now it's this steady stream of air.  In fact if you were sleeping in the same room with her you'd lay there wondering if each breath was her last because it was like this:  Ho...........crickets..........perrrrr. 

Then you got my dad.  When we were kids he could snore so loud that you would hear him clear across the house through closed doors like he was lying in the same room.  I remember waking up one night thinking there was a tiger in my room.  I was scared to death!  Then I got to the point that I would go into my parents' room and poke him so he'd stop.  By the time I was 20 or so I would lay in bed and yell, "Dad!  Dad!  Roll over!"  To which my mother would awaken "the dead" and he would roll over long enough for the rest of us to go back to sleep.

My mother used to say that she didn't hear him.  How the...What the hell?  They would be asked to stay in hotels when visiting relatives so as not to upset the nighttime balance.  She said that if she went to sleep before he came to bed then she didn't hear him.  Which is really the truth because I have the same dilemma here although my husband doesn't sound like he's going to swallow the house.

So this past weekend my sister and I took my parents up to Logan for a wedding.  Beautiful day.  Beautiful couple.  But we had to share a rather small hotel room.  My sister started coming down with a cold and didn't sleep much of the night and I tossed and turned quite a bit.  And "apparently" I was gassy.  But that's neither here nor there.

During the night my dad was sleeping on his back.  Because his hip hurt.  Because he's old.  It went like this:  Cccccaw..............................................ng hng ng hng *smack smack smack*.      Cccccaw...................................................ng hng ng hng *smack smack smack*.  He would stop breathing!  My sister had nothing else to do since she couldn't sleep so she would count the seconds until he started breathing again.  The longest one was 45 seconds.  He would snore, not breathe, then start making noises and smacking his lips until it was time for the next snore.

I don't know how they both stand it.  But I'm glad they have each other, not breathing or breathing all night long.  The End.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Where Are You?!

One thing I have noticed over the last several years of being a mother is this:  your kids always want to know where you are.  From the first child I ingrained into them that they must always tell me where THEY are.  They could go play anywhere in the neighborhood as long as they told me where they were going next.  If they were switching to another friend's house they would either come tell me or call me before they would go.  My oldest was so good at this task that the other children naturally followed suit. 

I only had one child who really pushed the boundaries of this rule once.  She had gone next door to visit a neighbor who's children were all gone but loved for little visitors to come calling.  I realized she was missing from the house and sent the my oldest and his friends out to see if they could find her.  30 minutes had gone by and we had gone to every house on the block asking if they'd seen her.  Nobody had seen her.  I am usually a pretty level-headed person even in situations like that one but after 30 minutes of her missing I was starting to feel the panic rise.  I had just headed into the house to call the police when one of the neighbor kids came to my house and announced they had found her next door.  We had knocked on the door but no one had answered.  I yelled at her and explained why I was so upset then sent her back out to play.  Whew!  Crisis averted.

I bought our first cell phone 8 or 9 years ago.  It is a dinosaur compared to what we have now and the plan was terrible.  This was back when no one gave out their cell phone numbers except for emergencies as they were still so expensive to use.  Cell phones are a wonderful invention.  They allow us to be able to get in touch with anybody at almost any time.  They allow us mothers to go to the grocery store by ourselves and not have to worry about leaving the kids home for a minute in their own care. (Come on.  You know you have all done it at least once.)

The day our oldest turned 12 we never hired another babysitter again.  The hubs and I would go out to eat, go shopping, go here and there together--without the children--and never have to worry.  We left for longer and longer amounts of time because we both had cell phones and the kids could call to bitch about each other at will.  It was almost like we were still right there.  We bought our oldest daughter a cell phone, then our oldest son.  We could get in touch with them at any time through talk or text.  These conveniences are nice but it makes it so we spend more and more time apart because we can connect electronically.

Last night the hubs and I went to see a movie and then out to a late dinner.  We were driving home, about 5 minutes away from the house when my phone rang.  It was our youngest.  He said, "Mom?  Where are you?"  I told him.  Then, "When are you coming home?"  I told him. 

When I got off the phone I mentioned to my husband that kids always want to know where their parents are.  Even I, as an adult, want to know where my parents are.  Each one of them has a cell phone and up until a month ago a house phone, too.  There are time when I will call my mom's cell phone and get no answer.  Then I'll call my dad's cell phone to ask where she is.  No answer.  Then I would call their home phone.  If there was no answer then I would naturally assume they were both dead.  Because that is the most natural conclusion to draw.

When one of them finally call me back I usually say,  "Oh good.  You're not dead."  Then I ask "Where were you?"  It's my right to know.  I made them parents.  It makes me happy to know the location of my parents.

All of my kids no matter how old they are will call me if I'm not home when they get home from school.  "Mom?  Where are you?  When are you coming home?"  I let them know and they seem to feel better about that. 

You know, you'd think they'd be more excited to see me when I walked through the door.  But usually all they really want to know is, "What's for dinner?"

Friday, November 4, 2011


I was blissfully sleeping early this morning, having a dream about.....something....I'm not sure what.  I dreamed that my mom was downstairs loading the dishwasher and called my name three times.  I heard her call me.  It woke me up.  I lay there for awhile trying to figure out if she was dead and had visited me or what as it was very real.  Finally I turned over and looked at my clock--it was 6:27am.  I called my dad and asked him to make sure she was still breathing.  He said that he had just left her on his way out the door to run to Salt Lake---she was alive and breathing. 

It was too real for me.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Halloween 2011

First off, everyone should know we took my mom to Bed, Bath and Beyond yesterday to look for a new pillow.  While I was in the bathroom she knocked down an entire display of drinking glasses.  I asked my sister if she would have to pay for that and she said, "I doubt it.  Look at her."  Pathetic.

For the last several years I've been so busy on Halloween that I don't know how I get everything done in one day.  There was always the school classroom parties followed by the school Halloween parade, usually we stayed at school to eat lunch.  Then directly after school we would load up and go to my parents' house to show off the kids' costumes.  We'd make it home in time to eat a little dinner then go trick-or-treating.  We've added in a neighborhood trunk or treat in our cul-de-sac which I refer to as the cu-de-sac of horror, in the last few years.  The hubs always takes the kids out trick or treating.  I think I've done it once in my entire time as a parent.  Not to mention that the past 5 years have been spent in the employment of the school district....very tiring day.

The hubs loves Halloween so much that he calls it a holiday and doesn't work on that day which is fine with me because then it's a holiday for me, too.  I expected my Halloween to be just as busy this year as in past years but to tell the truth I sat around doing a whole lot of nothing all day.  The school changed the parade to 9:30 in the morning, the hubs and I went out for a quick breakfast, then we came home so he could continue working on the oldest child's costume.  I eventually took a nap.  Then in the afternoon started watching The Walking Dead on Netflix.  Really awesome show.  I watched all 6 before I went to bed that night.

The hubs makes the kids' costumes.  If they can get what they want already made then they buy it otherwise he sews them.  That's right---HE sews them.  I could care less.  In fact he said, "Aren't you glad you have a husband that can sew?"  I said, "I'm just glad I have a husband who care."  Because I obviously don't.

This is Molly as Harley Quinn.  She's the Joker's psychotic girlfriend.

Adam as the Joker and Molly.  Adam changed later into another outfit.
Emily as a Jedi.  He made the entire outfit except the pants. And the back of Emily's hair.

Matthew as a Ninja.  Homemade outfit again.

Adam as the Assasin's Creed guy. This is what the hubs was finishing up. He even made the boot covers.

As long as the kids are happy that's what counts.  And they were all very happy.