Monday, January 31, 2011

Get That Overgrown Toad Out of my Ear Please!

My teeth suck! At every opportunity they do something that causes me pain, stress, grief and anxiety. Stupid teeth! I guess I should be thankful that I have them and that I have dental insurance, but man, sometimes . . .

You remember the whole implant thing right? With Marlon Brando and the swelling and the complaints and all. Well, that saga is finally coming to a close. In another two weeks I should have the permanent crown to cover the little metal stub that's been sticking up out of my gums for the last 8 months. Very attractive, yes, but now let's cover it up please. Thank god it wasn't a more visible tooth!! That took entirely too long due in part to the complete lack of any organization by my two dentists and in part I suppose by my own lack of following up with said dentists to move things along.

In any case, now that it's wrapping up I have another tooth that is in the process of betraying me. It's not slowly commiting suicide like the last one (at least not yet as far as I know) but it sure is causing me some issues. I had a filling replaced in mid-December - it was cracked and old. But it was a big filling. And apparently it was deep and went close to the root. Apparently too close. It started out being very sensitive to cold and heat. Dentist said if it doesn't get better I'll need a root canal. Super. Well now, a month later it is excruciatingly sensitive to cold and heat. Drinking hot coffee gives me a raging headache and my sinuses in my cheek and forehead throb, my throat and nose hurts and my ear aches like there's an overgrown toad stuffed inside trying to get out. But at least it's a steady, expected pain that comes on slowly (with each swallow of hot coffee or any hot food).

And then there's the cold sensitivity. Forget breathing through my mouth. Holy crap! A sharp intake of room temperature air, let alone of frigid CNY winter air and a blinding, sharp pain shoots up through my tooth and sets my cheek aching. It's one of those, holy-sh!t-grab-futiley-at-my-cheek-wince-and-hope-it's-over-soon pains. Wow! And don't get me started on the time I accidentally touched it with an ice cube! Wow! Now that was something. Something very very very bad! It was bad enough to get the hubby out of his chair to see if I was OK. So, cold cereal, any cold drink, ice cream, air, or anything below about 98.6 degrees is a challenge.

The good news is that other than when I'm eating, or breathing heavily it's not too bad. Most of the time. As long as I don't touch it with my tongue. Or think too hard about it. But then there are those days where it aches constantly - all night long. Try to sleep through that!

And my uber-available, uber-caring dentist? Yeah, he can fix it in a couple weeks. A couple weeks?!?!? I have to wait that long?!?!? I've never wanted a root canal this badly! Stupid teeth! Stupid dentist!


Friday, January 28, 2011

The Tank Overfloweth

Those sneaky snails! Do you know what they did? They laid eggs! The nerve! And the worst part? They didn't tell me! And they hid them! And I didn't see them! And yes, they hatched! Sweet Pea was looking in the tank one day and noticed all these little tiny dots all over the glass. And those dots? Yes. Snails. Darn mollusks! Darn Gastropods!

So I counted them. There were over 150 of the darn things! Holy snail invasion Batman! That's a lot of snails!! Well, not to be cruel and heartless, but I felt like it was time for a bowl cleaning! I know - poor little things. I did feel bad. Really. But come on. Snails grow. And the tank isn't big enough to hold that many full grown snails, even if I take out the castle, plants and all the water and heap them up into a snail mountain. Heck, I don't think the kitchen is big enough for that many snails!

So, we picked out 10 or so choice snails (the ones that were big enough to actually see and get a grip on) and put them in a safe place. The rest, well, they are probably living happily in the drain right now. Laying eggs. Growing to enormous proportions. Planning on clogging up and taking over the drain, then the sink, then the kitchen and finally the world. I wouldn't put past them, those sneaky (and prolific) little critters.

And to celebrate (Celebrate what you ask? The hatching? The purging? I don't know. Maybe just to celebrate this post), here are some haiku:

A snail invasion
The tank is spilling over
Snails are everywhere

or maybe this:

A couple of snails
Manage to hide eggs from me
Tank overfloweth


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

With All The Grace of a Crashing Truck

Our sweet little kitty has a taste for Nerf bullets. She may look sweet and gentle, but as soon as she gets her claws into one of those bullets she settles down like a leopard to a meal and gnaws off the annoying orange foam, leaving only the black bouncy rubber tip. This delectible morsel gets batted, tossed, rolled, clawed, flipped and poked. Toss one down the hall and as it bounces off the floor and walls, you can watch a little black and white rocket in hot pursuit - bouncing off the walls, skittering down the linoleum, twisting and turning with all the grace of a crashing truck. It's something to watch!

And then, like any good little kitty, she brings it back and drops it at your feet. Wait, you say! That's not what cats do! Cats don't play fetch! That's only for dogs! Well, that's what this one does. She will bring it back until you are so sick and tired of playing that you're ready to cry. Then she will continue to play with it on her own.

I even had a picture of one of the chewed up, soggy nerf bullets, but it was so repulsive I couldn't post it here. And then of course I was too lazy to find a replacement picture - a picture of the cat maybe. Oh well. Maybe next time.


Monday, January 24, 2011

The Anticipation Makes it Worth the Wait. Or Does it?

 So I got these awesome little cookie cutters for Christmas! They are ABC cookie cutters - the ABC being 'Already Been Chewed'. The cutters have bite marks in them. Gingerbread men with bite marks. Cool!

So, for a couple of weeks I talked about making the cookies, but wanted to wait until some of the over-abundance of Christmas treats were gone. I finally decided it was time. The kids didn't want to help make them, but they were very very anxious for me to be done with it so they could enjoy the fruits of my labor, especially Doodlebug. It went like this:

Doodlebug: Are they done yet Mommy?
Me: No, I haven't even finished the dough yet.
Doodlebug: Oh.

Doodlebug: Did you make the cookies yet Mommy?
Me: I have to chill the dough overnight.
Doodlebug: (mouth drops open) What?!?! Overnight?!?!?
Me: Well, a couple of hours, but since it's 8:00 I'm not going to make them until tomorrow.

The next day as I pulled the dough out of the fridge and began to roll it out:
Doodlebug: Are they almost done? Huh? Huh? Are they almost done?
Me: I'm working on it. They'll be done soon.

I put them in the oven to cook.
Doodlebug: Are they done yet?
Me: Not quite yet. Another couple minutes.

I checked them in a few minutes and they weren't quite done.
Doodlebug: Are they done yet?
Me: Not yet. Another minute.

And it went like that for about 5 minutes. I didn't want to over cook them, and being brown I couldn't quite tell if they were done or not. So I checked them frequently and every time I checked them he asked if they were done. And finally they were done. I took them out of the oven and removed them from the cookie sheets and set them out to cool.

Doodlebug: Can I have one? Can I have one?
Me: Well, they're still hot. But you can have one.
Doodlebug: Ow ow ow! Hot hot hot!! I can't eat them yet!!
Me: OK. Wait a few minutes.

A few minutes later he picked a choice cookie, studied it, opened his mouth and took a nice big bite. He chewed. He thought about it a bit. He grimaced. He spit it out. "Oh my god! That's awful!!"

Then he stomped out of the room mumbling under his breath "I waited all that time for something terrible!"

I think the anticipation made it worth the wait, don't you?


Friday, January 21, 2011

Did I Forget to Mention that I Stepped On It?

You know those tasty little 'onion-flavored' rings called Funyuns? Of course you do. Do you know what you call a bag of 'Funyuns' in a kids hands? Crumb-yuns. You can imagine what led to a bag of crumb-yuns. Of course you can. You have imagination.

'nuff said on that.

Reminds me of the time when Doodlebug was complaining about the state of his peanut butter cup. It was all squished. I asked him what happened and he said,

"I dropped it."


"And stepped on it."

Classic! It doesn't get any better than that!


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Pumpernickle Pickle

Last week I had to travel for work. I absolutely hate travelling for work. Away from family and all the comforts of home. Hate it. But that aside, most people who travel for work eat out a lot. You're not home, restaurants are the obvious choice. But me? What do I do? I usually stay somewhere where there is a sink and a refrigerator and a stove and a microwave. And I stop at the grocery store and get a few things. Nothing fancy, usually an odd assortment of stuff.

I love breakfast food so I'll have a large breakfast provided by the hotel - eggs, bacon, french toast, waffles, omelets, sausage, hash browns, you name it. Yum! All sorts of tasty choices.

Then a quick sandwich for lunch and for dinner it's cereal, or peanut butter toast, hot cocoa, yogurt. My last night I had to finish up my leftovers - I had pumpernickle bread with melted swiss cheese on top, a bowl of cereal and some peanut butter - off a spoon. Weird huh?! Yep! But tasty-licious!!


Monday, January 17, 2011

A Wintery Treat

 I've written previously about homemade hot chocolate. I'm a big fan. Besides that recipe, I have some others. I've posted one below for a slow cooker hot chocolate that is super awesome. Of course, this particular recipe is very high in fat and calories, but hey, you have to splurge once in a while, right? And if you just can't, then you can always alter the recipe. Replace the whole or 2% milk with skim. Replace the cream with no fat half and half or 2% milk or replace a portion of it. It will still be yummy!

Slow Cooker Hot Cocoa

3 cups milk
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp vanilla
1 cup whipping/heavy cream
1 ounce bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped

Combine 1/2 cup milk, sugar, cocoa and salt in a bowl and beat until smooth. Pour it into a 3 quart slow cooker. Add the remaining 2 1/2 cups milk and vanilla. Cover and cook on low for 2 hours. Add the cream and chopped chocolate and cook on low for 20-30 minutes until hot and chocolate is melted.

Pour into mugs and top with whipped cream or marshmallows. Makes 6 servings.
And since I don't have a picture of hot chocolate like I planned, you'll have to settle for a hot chocolatey haiku:

Hot chocolate for me
No other hot drink will do
A wintery treat


Monday, January 10, 2011

Sparkle Snout The Bead Monster

Dutchess has developed a taste for beads. Those that know me know that I have a plethora of hobbies. My latest hobby for this month is making beaded bracelets and necklaces. This involves some very thin wire, some pliers, wire cutters, a few jewelry pieces such as clasps and crimping beads and lots and lots and lots of beads. Since I generally do this at the kitchen table I suspect Dutchess thinks that whatever I'm doing it must be tasty since it involves the table that is very often covered in delicious-smelling things. It also involves intriguing noises. To a cat, I suspect, the sound of tiny beads clinking in bowls and the whisper of wire dragging across the tablecloth and the quick snick-snick of wire cutters is a source of never-ending curiousity that must . . . be . . . investigated. At all costs.

So she jumps onto the bench, whiskers quivering. Sniff sniff sniff. She snakes out a tentative paw, questing for the source of those sounds. She jams her fuzzy whisker-covered nose into a bowl and twirls it around, coming up with beads stuck to the end. [sigh] I think I'll call her 'Sparkle Snout'.

So I shoo her down. But before long she is on the table, sitting pretty and watching. Watching each bead slide onto the wire. Watching each snip of the cutters. Pouncing at every dangling wire.

It certainly makes a somewhat tedious, yet fun task, that much more interesting. Damn cat!


Friday, January 7, 2011

Chocolate, Sweet and Dark

I don't know about you but I love peppermint and dark chocolate together. Usually, if we're talking chocolate by itself I prefer milk chocolate - the smooth sweetness can't be beat. But if we're talking caramel or mint - wrap that stuff in dark chocolate and I'll be in heaven! Mmmm. Something about the uber sweetness of the mint (or the caramel) just lends itself to a slightly bitter chocolate, don't ya think?

Chocolate, sweet and dark
Enrobing sweet, snow-cool, mint
A delicious treat

And a haiku to celebrate caramels (unfortunately (for you) I ate all the caramels before I had a chance to take a picture):

Bittersweet chocolate
Coating smooth chewy sweetness
Caramel within


Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A Post-Christmas Haiku

 A post-Christmas haiku:

Sweet mint, red and white
Leftover Christmas candy
It will last all year