Sunday, November 29, 2009

How NOT to make a Gingerbread House.

This is the story about the day that I decided to become a "Martha Stewart Mom" and make some memories with my daughter

Step 1.) Decide that since your husband has gone to a high school reunion for the weekend and it's raining, this would be a good time to "bond" with your daughter over a home baked gingerbread festive!!! and how hard could it be...really???

Step 2.) Take your little angel to the grocery store and buy $29.00 worth of candy and
supplies...telling EVERYONE what a wonderful mother you are...and your going to bake a beautiful festive gingerbread house!!...Forget a bag of ingredients at Walmart and stop halfway through the recipe to load back up in the truck and go get said bag.....OK, back home...

Step3) Dress your daughter up in a new apron and get crackin! Within minutes use every mixing bowl in your tiny kitchen and have at least a pound of flour at your feet....but were having FUN!!!

Step4) Run out of molasses 1/2 cup short...but so what?...whose going to REALLY eat the walls???...Keep on baking!!!
(I am NOT going back to the store!!) The dough comes out great!! and actually seems like things are going remarkably well so far!!

Step5) Cut out the walls and roof using the downloaded template from the computer....Here is where things went wrong I will learn MUCH later....

Step6) Create a graham cracker cookie house for your daughter to keep her from asking you for the 1,000,000th time..."Mom, can we put the candy canes and marshmallows on now?" So she can do just that while the gingerbread house bakes and cools...and I sit down for a few minutes....This keeps her quiet for a while....(Because her mouth is now completely full of candy for pretty much the remainder of the day). This is where I stopped taking pictures because the house was done and it was time for me to start my "Creation".

Step 7) As I said in step 5...things went wrong at the "cutting out" point because the template "eluded" to a cut that shouldn't have been...I learned this as I was holding two walls up with one hand...trying to "glue" them together with my homemade Martha Stewart royal icing...propping up one side with a box of jell-o that I grabbed with my teeth from the cabinet and of course I couldn't let the walls go until the icing "set up" then, as I stood there going over the next step in my head the realization set in ...there was no place to attach my roof.....ARE YOU FRIGGIN KIDDING ME???????
(probably a good thing there are no pictures of this particular part because it got ugly.)
I propped up the walls with everything I could reach and grabbed my roof to be SURE I wasn't mistaken. I wasn't. Just then, the whole thing wall cracked in half and I snapped.

Step 8) Open the kitchen window and hurl the entire gingerbread house out of it. OH yes I did!!!
Carlie came out into the kitchen to say..."Mom?...Why you trow de gingerbwead house out de window?" Because I MESSED IT ALL UP!...(What a wonderful lesson to teach my impressionable daughter....But right then and there... I was too mad to care!!!)
She thought that was just hysterical, disappeared and returned with a pretzel..."Mom...You shawe my pretzew wid me?"
I wondered if anyone was walking down the street when I opened the window and flung a whole gingerbread house out it... My neighbors must think by now I'm a lunatic, this isn't the first kitchen disaster to go out my window....

Step 9) So now what do I do with the fact that I have all this friggin candy and no gingerbread house?
I go to Shaw's and buy that damned kit that I scoffed at a week ago thinking...."That's for losers... I can make my OWN!" HA HA HA!!! Foolish me.
So at 6:30pm I loaded up Cricket Carlie and myself and we headed to the store to by the "Looser Gingerbread house kit" just to get the FRIGGIN THING DONE!!! After that, we stopped at McDonalds for dinner ( Because we've eaten so healthy so far all day, why break a cycle?) And then headed home.

Step 10) Once we ate our most nutritious dinner, I opened the " Looser kit" and took out the dinkiest little cardboard looking un appetizing gingerbread house I have ever seen..."F____IT!" I dove in with every bag of candy I had and decorated the hell out of that house!!

Carlie had long since lost total interest in anything but stuffing as much candy into her mouth as possible and was continually hopping at this point on a crack like sugar high while watching NICK JR. for the third cosecutive hour.
Before I knew it it was 8:30PM and I had run out of places to stick candy onto this little creation of mine. THANK GOD THAT IS OVER!!!!

Step11) Survey the damage. After all was said and done, the kitchen was DESTROYED. Royal icing by the way sets up to a cement like substance that can only be removed with scalding hot water and a putty knife. I had dishes everywhere and I was stepping on graham crackers, candy and chunks of gingerbread house everywhere I went...(This was SUCH a good idea).
So after bribing Carlie into my bed and getting her to lie still for 5 minutes she passed out cold.
I did the dishes....chiseled off the counter tops and made myself a spiked eggnog with an Excedrin chaser.
I will probably never attempt this again...good thing I took these pictures so I can one day prove that I made an effort at being a "Martha Stewart Mom". But by then, Carlie will know me well enough to realize I tried...and it's not me. And I think I just realized that too.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Lazy Thanksgivings are the BEST!!

Happy Thanksgiving!!

I'm sitting here waiting for the turkey to finish it's last 15 minutes in the oven.

Everything else is done and I am looking forward to getting this turkey dinner over with so I can finally have some PIE!!! The dinner is the formality before the dessert as far as I'm concerned.

I have spent a very quiet relaxing day with my family today. We are eating a little later than most...probably around 6pm..but that gave us the day to just sit around....and do NOTHING!

We woke up and lounged in bed (ALL of us) till around 9am. Then I got Carlie her Ovaltine, got us some coffee and had a scrumptous breakfast of homemade banana bread and cranberry bread slathered in REAL butter.... (As much as I dislike Rachael Rae...I have to use her description because it suits the moment..."YUM-O"!!) We had drop in guests later in the morning, Jen and her girls Ava and Olivia popped in and caught me in my robe, still glowing from breakfast and my house in turmoil. (I am thankful for friends that show up un announced that don't make me panic about those things!!) So I sat around in my robe and got to have a bonus visit with Jen, while the girls enjoyed some time together playing in Carlie's room.

After they left...(around 1pm) I shamed myself into getting myself and my daughter into some clothes finally...I mean, It IS a holiday...we should probably get dressed at some point... And we started cooking. Once the turkey was in and everything else was ready to go, Henri headed out to the store for a few forgotten items and while he was there, he hit up a "Red box" and got the Disney movie "UP". We all sat in the living room and enjoyed a quiet afternoon with each other.

Besides a few phone calls from friends with Thanksgiving wishes...we were just "here" and it was heaven.

Took a break from blogging to eat dinner and now I can finish this post by saying...dinner was great...


Thursday, November 19, 2009


Today is my 19 year anniversary at the VNA. It came and went without any fanfare...I made it a point to tell at least 6 people today... I got a grin and a "Oh WOW! Congratulations!" That was about it. It seems surreal to me that I am old enough to have been at a job for this long. I am standing on the edge of a cliff at 39 and teetering on the brink of 40. (Yes, that was a necessary analogy.) I am still not sure how I feel about that. One part of me is saying."Suck it up, so your what?" And another part of me is cringing at the thought. 40 is "old". ( Sorry to any 40 year old's reading this, but it's the damned truth.) I remember thinking 30 was 40 must be REALLY old. I was just told the other day that I look like I'm in my early 30's. My response to that was, "Fat don't crack". And It's true. So there's one good thing about being a round girl.

I was reading my blog back to this time last year and thinking about how much can change in just one year. I am so glad that I started blogging, because I realized what a nice chronicle it is of my life. The pictures and the day to day things that go on that I have forgotten about in this whirlwind of the past year...I am especially grateful that I blogged about not having enough pie dough to make pinwheels with Carlie last Thanksgiving. I forgot about that and probably would have done the same thing again this year! I'm looking forward to the holidays with mixed emotions. I feel like a grown up more without my Mom around and am trying hard to remember that Christmas is for the children. And at the same time realizing that I am no ones child anymore. So weird.

I'm going to be taking a to a trip down Rt.6A this Saturday with a good friend. We'll be stopping at the artisan stores and visitng gift shops that smell like cinnamon, and I'll get to spend some rare time with a great friend who works allot. I can hardly wait! I'm sure there will be lots of laughing... a stop (or two) at Dunkin Donuts for coffee... and hopefully a lunch. There may be trouble though, there usually is...I'll keep you posted.

I'll be looking forward to doing something different,having some fun and beginning my Christmas shopping!! CHA-CHING!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I'm back.

Where do I start??
I am slowly getting used to the fact that my Mom is gone. The urge to call her has subsided. I visited her grave for the first time last week to check on the engraving I had done. It looks nice. The grass is so green on top of the gravesite it looks fake. I probably won't go back there for a long long time.
I left the safety of my old job for a new challenge at a Child Care center as the Administrative Assistant. I love it, the people are great and friendly...I go over to the old office for lunch with my friends every day. It's such a nice change of pace to work with kids again. I dont miss the old job even a little.
We decided that Rufus would be better off with a new home. A friend of mine from work happened to be looking for a dog and she offered to dog sit for him while Henri went to Maine and I went to NH with the girls for a weekend. Rufus never came home. They loved him and kept him and that was fine with me. I have guilt over letting him down, but am glad he is with this family. They have two girls 10 and 12 and they walk him every day and take him to a nearby beach to run. Perfect for Rufy. Cricket has settled back into being an only dog quite well. She's doing well considering her whole little life was flipped upside down too. It took a little adjustment time, but I think were all good now. She has been so good with Carlie and I am amazed at how patient she has been with being attacked by a 3 year old. She's coming along.
Carlie is now in a big girl bed, going on day 4. So far so good. She's talking and singing constantly and is more fun every day. I wish my Mother could be here to hear all the things she says and kills me she's missing it all.
Henri's job is going well...It's not turning out to be all that was promised (as usual) but he's hanging in there. He leaves early and comes home late and is running constantly. We look forward to weekends, but even the weekends we dont plan anything seem to fill up with things to keep us busy. Were looking forward to the holidays and greatful were all working and healthy. That's cause for us to celebrate after these past couple of years!!!

Thursday, July 2, 2009


Mom died of cancer last week. Yuck.
I have incredible friends. I am incredibly blessed. I am..................................the last one here from my immediate family. I hate that.
I'm so sad for my Mom that she didn't get more time with my daughter. I am so sad for my daughter that she didnt get more time with my Mom. I belive that life is a journey and that everything that happens is part of the overall lessons we need to learn in order to move forward.
Part of this lesson for me is patience. Is appreciation. Is courage.
Life doesnt suck. It is what you make it....even the bad stuff.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

It's been a while...

Seems longer than three months since I last posted... Carlie is talking like a little trooper, she is just so friggin adorable and we are so desperately in love with her. I recently found out that a local dance school takes children under 3years old. HOW DID I MISS THAT??? I am so mad at myself for finding this out now....but I plan on finding a dance class that will fit into my schedule and dress this girl in some tights and dance shoes!... I took ballet class when I was three, and just loved it and my teacher, Mrs. Koenig- who was Belgian ( I believe) and the A typical ballet teacher.
She had long white hair always tight in a pony tail or bun. She wasn't much bigger than we were at the time and she spoke with a thick accent...I just adored her!! I remember the leotards and the ballet shoes and the smell of the hall that we were using for the class... It makes me smile to think about it. I would love for Carlie to have that too. My husband finally landed a great job off Cape. It was a long hard time with him out of work, but things seem to be looking up for him on the workfront. My Mom isn't doing very well, that's all I'll say about that.
Work is busy and things are still and always changing...I don't know where this chapter in my life is going to take me, but I sense a shift coming...I think with just about everything. Luckily I have my "soft place to fall" here with my family and I am so greatful that I have my husbands support behind everything I do. Thank God for him and his understanding...he's truely my best friend. That's all for now...I'll update with some dance-er-ific news ASAP.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Pure Heaven.

So I live in this tiny little house...a cottage really. And long ago I had my own little space all set up here in my little cottage,with my painting stuff and my scrapbooking stuff....and all my little drawing books and crafty things...It was pure heaven.

Then we had a baby.

I lost my place and the craft area became the crib area and I had to move to the basement. I didn't like it there one bit. It was icky, and cold and spidery and dark and too far away from my baby. So I didn't really create anything for a very long time. Then, my husband had a great idea. He said I should use the breakfast nook as a craft room! What a GREAT idea!!!! So, we bought a huge butcher block table from a friend, Henri put together a couple pieces of leftover office furniture for some storage and then hooked my computer up and set it all up for me.....and guess what? I HAVE A CRAFTROOOM!!!!!!!!!!! I am so psyched. I can scrapbook and not have to worry about putting it all away halfway through a page!....I can paint and not have to move everything for lunch!

I can draw and be totally in my own space but not too far away from everyone else in the house!....I really needed this. I already feel better. I feel like creating! I just don't know where to start? Do I paint something? Do I scrapbook my 3,000 pictures from the birth to most recent birthday of my daughter? It's the best kind of predicament. I highly recommend a space like this. it's like thereapy.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009