Monday, May 27, 2013

Ruby, the Home Wrecker

Look at this innocent little face . . . what's not to love?  That's what I thought anyway . . .
Hi, I'm Ruby.  Can we be friends?
Ruby was the 5th grade classroom pet.  She was there the first day of school in 2012 along with Leopold, the Gecko.  Each student would have the opportunity to take home the class pet, of course with parental permission.  Ryan had a great first week and was offered the guinea pig as a sort of reward . . . of course I agreed to have her. 

I thought it would be hysterical to bring her home on Friday and act like I had gotten the kids a new 'back to school' pet.  I knew Getzy would be mad at the thought of a new pet, but I was certain that as soon as he learned Ruby was just a weekend visitor, then surely he'd think I was hysterical.  The kids and my best girlfriends were in on the joke . . . although in hindsight they were more apprehensive than me . . .   

A little back story . . . in August 2011, I thought it would be fun to get each child a new pet for the beginning of the school year.  Getzy not so much.  We compromised . . . I got a blue parakeet I named Marty McFly, and Getzy got a new big screen TV.  I should mention here that the parakeet was $19.99 at Petsmart.  Clearly there was a 'winner.' 
I should also remind you of how I found Abby in the street and refused to give her away once we couldn't find the owner (see story here), against Getzy's wishes. 

Also, I may, or may not have, snuck in another parakeet one cold January day . . . this one was a pretty green, and I named him Friday since I got him on Friday, January 13, 2012.  I didn't mention getting a new bird to Getzy . . .  it just sort of happened.  Marty didn't get trained properly . . . mostly because every time I accidentally hit the cage with my elbow, Abby would come running with her mouth open hoping to catch a bird snack.  So one day when my Mom was visiting, she declares Marty to be lonely, and we just 'fixed' it . . . with a new friend.  It took Getzy over 24 hours to notice . . . it would have taken longer if Amanda didn't stand next to the cage and keep rolling her eyes towards it.
In case you haven't guessed, I love pets . . . anything really, except reptiles.  When I was a child, getting a new pet was tantamount to other kids getting new shoes.  My dad would bring home puppies people dropped off at his work . . . we'd go to the fair, and I'd get a new pet . . . we go to the feed and seed, and I'd get a new pet . . . you get the drift.  My pet repertoire growing up consisted of dogs, cats, rabbits, chickens, guinea fowl, turkeys, ducks, hamsters, birds, hermit crabs, fish and once before I was born, my parents let my oldest brother get a pony . . . they weren't allowed to keep him in our neighborhood though.  Sad.

Ok, back to our first visit with Ruby . . . so Getzy gets home from work and once he sees Ruby, he absolutely flips his lid.  I let him in on my 'joke' within 30 seconds but it didn't matter . . . he was mad.  Like crazy mad.  Freak show mad.  So I take the kids and Ruby to the basement to let him cool off.  I start texting my girlfriends about how my joke didn't go down like I planned and my most fabulous friend immediately texts back . . . "Ruby, the Home Wrecker" and that's how she got her moniker. 

Apparently the anger was because Getzy would prefer I ask him before bringing any pets, temporary or permanent, into the house given our shared pet history.  OK, fine.  Lesson learned . . . finally.

So Getzy has reluctantly agreed to host Ruby a few other times throughout the school year . . . of course with the prerequisite warning.  I was at school the Friday before the last weekend of the year . . . so after a quick text that served as his warning, Ruby came 'home' for a visit.   
 
Having been 'trained' by 30 5th graders, she's the most tame little girl.  Amanda loves her as much as I do and decided Ruby needed a little fun.  She's playing video games, working a puzzle, wearing my hat, blowing her nose and fighting crime with her sword.  What can I say . . . she was busy with her diverse talents. 

So when I took her back to school on Monday morning and expressed my love for her (again) to the teacher . . . she gave me a sly look and asked me if I wanted her for the summer.  What?  Duh, of course . . . but I had the Getzy obstacle. 

So I wait until the perfect moment to drop the bomb . . . I threw the whole 'the kids will take care of her and then they will never ask for one of their own' line at him.  I also reminded him that my pets were pretty tame compared to the new pet of my hairdresser's daughter (shout out RS and CB) . . .
Meet Fancy, the fancy goat!

Getzy tried to play tough, but he's really a softy and loves me a lot because he left it up to me . . . to make a pet decision?  Here's what I told him . . .
So much to my delight, Ruby is on summer vacation chez Getz.  The boys like her just fine, but Amanda and I are in our happy guinea pig place!  And Getzy is warming up to her but still calls her 'the rat!' 

And I'll leave you with this final little gem . . . my favorite guinea pig video!  What?  You don't have one?  Well, now you do!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

School's Out For Summer!

I cannot get those song lyrics out of my head today . . . give it a listen here!  But I'm really more of a Will Smith Summertime kind of girl . . . definitely my era!  Yes, shut up.  I'm kinda old.
Seriously Mom?  It's 7 a.m.
Obviously the kids are celebrating today . . . I'm super happy to have them home for the summer until they start fighting with each other!  We all need a break from the routine and constant running from place to place. 

We have been so blessed this year with a trifecta of amazing teachers . . . I hope they know how much the Getz family loves each one of them. 

But seriously, when did I get a middle schooler?  This cute boy is off to 6th grade next year.  He says he's ready . . . mom, not so much. 
Hamming it up on the 5th grade walk today! 
And can you stand it?  Look at my middle baby . . . he just finished 4th grade!
Amanda finished 2nd grade and moves to a new school next year.  She was practically leaping off the bus! 
 
Oddly enough, no tears today.  I think we are all  looking forward to a safe summer of fun and adventure! Here's hoping!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Time for some LOL's

I think it might be time to highlight some things that truly made me laugh out loud lately.  Now my sense of humor is a little off, but maybe you'll get a kick out of this stuff too!

So I'm embracing the color and got myself these cute nautical crop pants from Old Navy . . .
So I'm talking to one of the boys (I cannot remember which one) and he totally interrupts me, points at my 'ship inspired' pants and yells, "I ship my pants!"  OMG, I died.  If you have no idea what I'm talking about, please check out this video . . . it's short and hysterical.
Speaking of 'shipping your pants,' the kids and I were on the interstate, and I see something flapping in the breeze . . . oh wait, it's toilet paper unraveling out of a port-a-potty!  It would get too long and then break . . . but that kept happening!  Disclaimer - one of the kids took the photo because well duh, I was driving. 
Being the numbers girl that I am, this new restaurant name really caught my eye and made me giggle . . . eat my 'pie' was a bonus . . . I think you have to say it in a funny voice in your head to really make it work!
So Petey is pretty much the elder statesman at our house and could literally get away with anything . . . I mean he is 13 and loves us like no other.  He loves to ride to school in the morning . . . most of the time he's all like 'safety first' and settles down in a booster seat asking for more coffee.
But sometimes he's all like 'move over kid, that's my seat.'  So I pretty much tell Kyle to make room and buckle up . . . I won't let him shove him off the seat.  Petey usually takes a hint and goes back to his booster!
I like to pride myself on a pretty tidy home, and I regularly clean out the pantry and fridge.  Apparently I tend to neglect the freezer.  I was making punch for Kyle's class and needed some frozen concentrates.  I knew I had a few stashed, but I couldn't remember when I bought them . . . at least I thought to check the expiration date.  I laughed and then was mortified.  I call it my OJ shame.
The boys play some online game involving clans . . . sometimes they set up their own clan with their own rules.  Another disclaimer:  Getzy monitors this stuff so it's not like they are all free to check out porn on the Internet.  Anyway, I see Kyle typing, and I'm all nosey like 'whatcha doin'?'  Just making some clan rules he says . . . well son, you have to have standards . . . or at least 'minimum' ones.  And yes, we got some clarification (their idea of swear words are a little lighter than mine), and we suggested no trashing talking at all as a rule. 
OK, last one . . . I hesitate to even put this one on here because I don't want you to think I live in the ghetto . . . I don't live in a gated community or anything, but we do have pretty good HOA standards.  So I'm driving home during the day and see a bright neon sign on a door in my neighborhood . . . I'm thinking it's going to be a fun birthday message or something, except no.  Not fun at all.
Let me get that a little closer for you . . . I did edit the photo to try and make it easier to read . . . let me assure you it was very clear when I drove by.  I don't know these folks, and I've never even seen a woman at this house.  I'm just going to assume the 'd' in husband is on the back of the sign . . . like she ran out of room or something.  Definitely not a beautiful day in the neighborhood . . . 
And there you have it folks . . . a little twisted humor to brighten your day.




Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Prayers for Oklahoma and how to help

My heart is heavy . . . the devastation in Oklahoma is really just out of my realm of understanding.  The photos are unbelievable . . . Mother Nature is a force to be reckoned with . . . and storm chasers are nuts.  Watching the tornado footage is awe inspiring . . . and the after effects unfathomable.  

An amazing summary of ways to help is listed over at Mama Laughlin's blog today . . . check it out.

And go hug your loved ones.  I've been busy the last few weeks doing all kinds of volunteering for my kids' schools and various sports activities with them . . . today I am even more thankful that I have the opportunity to do so . . . so many folks affected by yesterday's storms will not. 

Events like yesterday are a sad reminder that . . .

Monday, May 20, 2013

Workout Round Up (and a cry for help!)

Did the 'cry for help' in the title scare you?  Don't fret, it's not that bad around here . . . more along the line of this . . . 
What you should know is that if I'm not blogging on a regular basis, then you folks need to send me copious amounts of caffeine, booze and chocolate because life is cuh-razy. 

I'll probably do a 'photo dump' about life's happenings soon but right now . . .
I am still trying to get my work out on . . . I did get in two 5:30 a.m. boot camps last week and C25K Week 6 days 1 and 2.  I also moved around on my feet for 10 (yes, I said 10) hours at a track meet on Saturday so I'm going to call that . . . 
Until next time . . . love and kisses. 

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Mother's Day 2013

A little Mother's Day recap so when I'm old and senile, I can look back and see how the day panned out for me in 2013.

The kids made the cutest cards for me. The princess is pretty craftastic . . . she was grinning from ear to ear when she came home and presented me with this little beauty.  My favorite part is her referencing our "special talk code" which basically means we talk like Bon Qui Qui at each other and laugh every time. 
It would appear that she started another note for me but apparently got sidetracked . . . but not before giving me one of the best compliments ever!




In case you don't speak 7 year old, that's "mathematic!"  Bam.  I like that she used "smart" too, but mathematic . . . she knows how to speak my love language.  And don't forget the super cute bookmark she made . . . love it!
 
Now my boys would rather do push ups than crafts, so to get this card from Kyle was super special.  I'm guessing it was 'make a card for mom at school' or do work kind of choice. 
Did you note the cool pop up effect?  That is a feat of engineering, and I love it.
 
And not to be outdone by the others, Ryan whips up a card for me . . . and figures out later that Amanda 'adjusted' his closing. 

My mom was super sneaky and sent a gift for Getzy to give me on Sunday . . . what a fun surprise! 

And not to be outdone, Getzy got me a couple of cute new charms for my bracelet . . . I do love a flip flop!

The kids also brought me breakfast in bed . . . it's always a treat to see what they are serving.  This time I got a bowl of Life cereal, my coffee (minus the sugar) and strawberries arranged in a smiley face.  They were so proud of themselves . . . it cracks me up.

But seriously, does anyone else set their holidays up for failure?  I have this perfectionist Norman Rockwell picture in my head of how things should go . . . guess how often that works out?  Uh, never. 

We had a lovely brunch with our friends and their girls.  And by lovely, I mean us constantly reminding the kids of their manners and where their napkin belongs and to eat with their forks, and blah, blah, blah.  Honestly, they are awesome kids . . . people tell me all the time how well behaved they are . . . but is it wrong to want them to sit still and act like little angels in a restaurant?  Well, kinda . . . they are kids after all.  I think I might need to take it down a notch or two.

Look at those cuties!  I'm so very grateful and blessed to be their mother.  That's what really matters.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Workout Round up . . . or do over week

Yeah, some weeks can suck it for working out.  I did manage to do two C25K runs from week 6 this past week but that's about it . . . unless you count working two field days at school and coaching track . . . but I don't.  Count those, that is.

Getzy was out of town for work . . . I really do count on him to help shuttle the kids from hither and yon and to be here when I want to get up crazy early to work out.  It's a good thing to shake it up every once in awhile . . . makes you appreciate your spouse a little more!

So I'm going to 'do over' last week and do C25K Week 6 again . . . in fact, I did Day 1 this morning.  I haven't been on a run since last Wednesday, and I felt all off on my schedule.  I've missed going to my 5:30 a.m. boot camps so I'm planning on hitting both of those this week as well!

I have to remember that this is a journey, not a destination.  And I always like this one . . .

Thursday, May 9, 2013

TMI? Probably.

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Oh . . . a linkup with some Blogger Superstars . . . fun!  I'm all about hanging with the cool kids . . . I never got to do that in school!  And I get to talk about me . . . bonus points.

Unlike my siblings(s) (that I love very much) . . . I am the youngest and only girl.  Seriously, it didn't get much better for me as a child.
 
My best friend says . . . my turtlenecks will never be in style, and that she'd cut a b!tch to have my back.  She is mine, and no, you can't have her.  My other BFF says, "I KNOW" kinda loud like a lot and occasionally, "I got another speeding ticket."
 
People call me . . . maybe?  Come on, you know that's a catchy tune . . . and now it's stuck in your head.  Loud or crazy . . . I hear that a lot.
 
I most often dream . . . about not studying for a final exam or that snakes are in my house.  I haven't been in school in 20 years, and I loathe snakes . . . is there a stronger word than loathe?  Hate?  Detest?  Yeah, all of that.
 
The best part of my day . . . is when my workout is OVER.  I feel like a freaking rock star . . . not like physically, but mentally.  I also like when I first lay down in bed . . . Getzy calls our bed quicksand.  It's true . . . our mattress is the bomb.
 
I really don't understand . . . people without common sense.  Is that mean?  I suppose when you are common 'sensical,' it just doesn't compute that folks "don't get it."  Sucks for them.
 
I get really annoyed . . . when people chew with their mouth open or smack their lips while eating.  WTH?  Nobody wants to see, or hear, what you are eating.  Gross.
 
There's nothing like a . . . taking a hot, relaxing bath.  It's the best way to end a day, especially with a good book and a glass of wine . . . oh, and some peace and quiet.  Life gets easier as your kids get older!
 
Lately, I can't get enough . . . water.  No seriously.  I'm just not a thirsty girl, but I know the health benefits of drinking lots of water.  If I can get in like 6-8 cups a day, I'm calling it a win.
 
One thing I am NOT is . . . indecisive.  Make a freaking decision people.  Go with your gut . . . it's usually right.  And I'm not tan.  That sucks a big one.
 
I spent too much money on . . . my wedding.  Getzy would agree . . . it was fabulous and all, but if we had invested that money . . . damn, when did I get so practical?
 
I want to learn . . . to speak French fluently.  I was getting close back in my early twenties, but you know what they say . . . if you don't use it, you lose it.  Ain't that the truth.
 
If I ever met Oprah in real life, I would . . . scream and go into the ugly cry.  Then I would just sit quietly, for once, and wait for the ah-ha moment.

I can't stop . . .  believing.  In myself, in God, in mankind, in Santa, in love at first site . . . life would suck without all those things.

Never have I ever . . . kissed a random person in a bar or on a dance floor.  Is that too much?  Am I over sharing? 

Reese Witherspoon . . . needs to go back blond and get her sh!t straight for her chirren.  And call a freaking cab.

And there you have it folks . . . more information than you ever wanted.  It's what I do!

Somebody has a screw loose

My ladies and I love an adventure so we got all kinds of crazy and signed up for a cooking class . . . on a Monday night . . . gasp! 
Just recently Getzy and I had a date night with another couple (which included the lovely lady in red) at The Iberian Pig, a tapas restaurant near Atlanta.  Wouldn't you know, the head chef at that restaurant was facilitating the class.  We loved the food at the restaurant . . . it's like Spanish cuisine with a southern flair.  
The class was hosted through the Cooks Warehouse.  The entire class fee was donated to the Atlanta Food Bank because everyone involved donated their time and talent.  Even the food and wine were donated.  How awesome is that?

There were prizes . . . and of course one of my ladies won.  Yes, I was happy for her . . . it was almost like I should have won.  We felt super safe walking to our car later in the dark.
There were some serious 'foodies' there . . . and it wasn't us.  People were taking notes and asking legitimate cooking questions . . . we were all like "Is there more wine?" 

It was pretty fancy.  We were seated at tables near the chef, but they had a huge mirror, tilted at just the right angle, so we could get a birds eye view of the food prep . . . very profesh.
Now about the food . . . it was tasty and fresh.  The chef's philosophy is to use only what would be in season at the farmer's market.

Here a basic rundown of what was served . . .
The 'classic basque' or bread was served with a white anchovy, orange slice and olive.  I'm not a fair critic as I loathe 'fishy fish.'  And it was.  It 'fished' up my orange and olive so this was a bust for me.

The Gazpacho brought it back home for this veggie lovin' girl . . . it was delicious.  It was so fresh and light . . . I would have happily had seconds. 

Clearly a favorite of the night was a homemade churro with a warm chocolate ganache.  It was a cinnamon and sugar delight.

The skirt steak with a Spanish style chimichurri sauce was a bit too rare for me . . . Getzy would have loved it as he prefers his meat to greet him with a moo.  The sauce was very tasty and the succotash was a clear winner for me until . . . dun, dun, dun. 

My friend shouts out "screw you" because she finds this little crunchy bit in her succotash.  Let me get that up close for you.  The shading around it is the oil from the succotash.
And yes, I'm serious . . . as a heart attack . . . which we all almost had . . . that there was a screw in her food. But no, she did not yell at anyone.   I might have, but she didn't.  Quite the shock.  Really, we have no idea how it got in there . . . the folks in the kitchen were doing an amazing job, and we watched the chef make the food. 

But as you know, we are classy beotches.  And since we knew all the proceeds were being donated to the food bank . . . we kept it to ourselves.  No need to make a scene . . . at least in this case.  Would we go back?  For sure.  Sh!t happens . . . nobody broke a tooth, right?  To be clear, that's right.

We knew we were going to be tired the next morning so like the awesome moms we are, we stopped and picked up some Krispy Kreme doughnuts for the chirren for breakfast.  Winning all around!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

New Workout Gear

I've added a few new items to my workout arsenal.  Don't be jealous . . . it's hard to be this fabulous.

It's getting 'hot in herre' . . . the temps are starting to heat up in Georgia and quite frankly, I don't even like to sweat.  Mostly because working up a good sweat for me equals a beet red face.  
Fresh boiled beet anyone?
Since the sweat has literally started dripping in my eyes . . . which kinda does make me feel like a bad ass . . . I had to resort to this . . .
My forehead fashion!
I found this little gem and thought "Yay me, I got a twofer!"  Not only does it keep the sweat out of my eyes, it alerts traffic that I'm coming.  Maybe I should just look into a hat?  Nah.
 
Technically I got a 'threefer' since it is also an effective punishment threat for my children.  They get home and I'm all like, "Check me out!  I'm so cool because I'm wearing Under Armour!"  They're all looking at me like 'Is she for real?  Haaaaa.  No.  But I told them if they didn't follow instructions and get their crap done when I asked, then I was going to wear "the headband" to track!  They know I have no shame, and I'm not kidding . . .

The headband keeps the sweat at bay, but I'm still pretty sure I'm going to spontaneously combust after each workout . . . which would really piss me off because that's just another mess for mama to clean up.  So I just shove my face in this . . . call it a shower and get on about my day.  

An instant cool down!
I'm mean really, who's got time for a shower when you get to spend 20 minutes after after workout relaxing on the couch like this . . .
Do these make my knees look fat?

OK, in my defense, I have a real knee "condition."  Do you feel sorry for me?  Good.  You should.  I'm talking MRI and physical therapy.  So who's a freaking rock star now for getting her run on?  Me, that's who.

Usually I'm in too much of a self imposed hurry to do this after my workout so I do it at night . . . so I can relax and watch TV.  There might be things to get done, but I just yell out to everyone, "I have a medical condition and I need to sit down . . . leave me alone people."  Or something like that . . .

And at the end of the day, after all this working out and yelling, it's time to find my happy place.  I am for reals when I tell you that Epsom salts are the best for sore muscles.  I also like to add a little baking soda and baby oil to my bath for good measure.  The baking soda softens the skin and the oil keeps me from having to use lotion . . . because I'm lazy.  Check out this article on taking a detox bath.     
And there you have it folks . . . you can thank me later for all this great advice.  It's just what I do.  I suppose if I'm going for 40, fit and fabulous, I might have some work to do. 

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Since I've decided to track my food and cut my calories, I thought I would share a recipe that I love, but won't be eating for awhile.  It's like my gift to you.

My family loves this dessert bread . . . it is so delish!  It makes me feel like a good mom when I bake stuff and my kids want it for breakfast or snack.  It may not be low fat, but it's better than the processed stuff, right?  Right.

Here's what you need to get started:
So this recipe comes from the Pillsbury Complete Book of Baking . . . it's old, but still has great recipes.  The recipe was not to be found on the Pillsbury website . . . so yep, you're pretty much lucky to have me! 
 
So first things first, preheat your oven to 350 degrees . . . you want it nice and hot when you're ready to bake. 
 
Then you need to grease your baking dish.  I prefer using an 11"x7" Pyrex baking dish.  (I for reals just measured it because I had no clue.)  The 8"x8" will work, but I found you need to be careful that the center is cooked through when using that size.
Now I'm sure you're all wondering what the plastic baggie is for, right?  Well . . . you put it on your hand when you grab the butter to grease the dish.  Smear the butter all around and then when you're done, bam . . . throw it away and no greasy fingers!  My mom used to do this so it makes me think of her.  Awww. 
 
Then of course you have to flour the pan or the bread will stick . . . trust me.  No bueno.  I scoop in a small amount of flour and twist and turn the pan over the sink, dumping the excess when it's covered.
You can certainly make this by hand, but using a mixer makes things easier.  The recipe calls for softened butter but since I never plan that far in advance, I just melt the butter in the microwave.  Combine the butter and sugar and beat until light and fluffy.
Next I add the eggs (one at a time), sour cream and bananas.  I like to use the brown old bananas that I can't pawn off on my kids.  I'll use however many I have . . . usually two or three.  Since I'm throwing them in the mixer, I don't mash them like the recipe says . . . if you are mixing by hand, definitely use a fork to mash up the overripe bananas before adding to the bowl.  
After that is mixed well, I add the salt and baking soda . . . before I add the flour.  The mixer is on low as I'm adding these to blend them in really well.  Then I add the flour about a half cup at a time with the mixer on the lowest setting so I don't wear the flour.

Once the flour is all mixed in, add the chocolate chips.  Do not over mix once the flour is added . . . just mix until it is all moist. 
Then pour the mixture into the prepared pan and smooth it out evenly.  I like to scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula to make sure I get it all. 
Bake  for 45-50 minutes and check to see if the center is done with a toothpick or cake tester.  If not, continue baking until you test the center, and it comes out clean.  The top should be golden brown.
My family loves to dig in after it's cooled slightly.  And to make sure it's calorific, Getzy and the kids like it covered in butter.  And let's face it, everything is better with butter!

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Ingredients:

3/4 sugar
1/2 cup margarine, or butter, softened
1 cup (2 medium) mashed ripe bananas
1/2 cup dairy sour cream (I used reduced fat)
2 eggs
2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup miniature semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional

Directions:
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Grease and flour one 9x5 or two 8x4-inch loaf pans.
  • In large bowl, combine the butter and sugar; beat until light and fluffy. 
  • Add eggs, sour cream and bananas; blend well.
  • Stir in salt, baking soda and flour; blend well.
  • Fold in chocolate chips and nuts.  Pour into greased and floured pan.
  • Bake for 55-65 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. 
  • Cool 15 minutes; remove from pan.  Cool completely.  Wrap tightly and store in refrigerator.
So I basically ignore the instructions after I get it in the pan . . . I start to check a little earlier than the recipe calls for because my oven runs hot.  I never remove it from the Pyrex dish unless it's going in my belly, and I never store it in the fridge.  Such a rebel.  Hope you enjoy!