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Jan. 21st, 2011 | 01:36 pm

I'm making lunch for the bigs (smoked salmon and cream cheese sandwiches and a muffin tin full of random ingredients--wee!) and thinking of what I would like for myself. Maybe a salad since I'm planning on tacos for dinner.

Ryan's parents are picking up the big kids at 3 pm and then Calum and I are going out to run errands and to get some Chipotle for dinner. Then, I'm going to watch The Office and enjoy a few heavenly bites of dark chocolate all by myself. My left breast is killing me and I don't care if the sugar feeds the yeast which feeds the infection or not. I totally need it right now.

Ryan is attending his work's holiday party this evening. I have to pick him up at eight pm, which will prevent any fuck-uppery induced by alcohol on his part. Thankfully.

It turns out that he may have overreacted with the pay increase. His pay raise was actually 11 percent with a $5,000 bonus now and the promise of another 12.5 percent bonus this year. The $3,000 was how much we will take home from the bonus after tax. He was hoping to take home at least $7,000 so that's why he was raging. And he is now a AVP (assistant vice president.) His manager wanted to make him a VP but HR nixed it and basically told him he was too young.

He claims he can't negotiate anything and that HR has all the power. I think it's a little ridiculous that you aren't allowed to negotiate for your salary but okay. Do we try to enter the job market with no unemployment benefits headed our way? Truly?

I don't know the answer and it is not my decision to make. =/

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This is amazing if you like salmon. Especially smoked salmon.

Dec. 25th, 2010 | 01:55 pm

8 cups potatoes, diced (I used red, did not peel)
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons butter, divided
1/2 cup of green pepper, diced
3/4 cup sliced leeks
1 cup diced onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups homemade vegetable stock
3.5 cups of milk, 1.5 cups of heavy cream
4 ounces of smoked salmon (I used wild-caught Alaskan sockeye) ((can increase or decrease)
1 teaspoon bourbon smoked paprika (or just smoked paprika)
1 teaspoon of sea salt
freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1. In a large stock pot, cook potatoes in enough water to cover completely, just until tender. Drain potatoes in a strainer and set aside.
2. In the same stock pot, saute the pepper,leeks, onion, and garlic with 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium heat until vegetables are tender (about 10-20 minutes). Add potatoes back to stock pot and set aside.
3. In a large saucepan, melt the remaining 1/2 cup of butter. Whisk in the flour, cooking and stirring over medium heat for a minute ot two. (Mixture will be thick.)
4. Over medium heat, gradually whisk in the vegetable stock and then 2 cups of the milk, whisking constantly until thickened.
5. Transfer cream mixture to the stock pot with the potatoes, stirring gently, and add remaining milk and cream. Stir in the salmon, salt, paprika, pepper. Bring the chowder to a simmer while stirring gently; then remove from heat.
6. Adjust seasonings to taste, spoon into bowls, and serve.

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Emily's Recipe I need to bookmark, finally

Nov. 19th, 2010 | 07:49 am

Vegan Cranberry Muffins

1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup coconut oil
finely ground flax mixed with a little water to match the volume and texture of 2 eggs
2 cups whole berry cranberry sauce
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

Mix sugar and oil, add wet ingredients, then add dry ingredients. Pour batter immediately into muffin cups and let rest for a few minutes before baking (the acid from the cranberries will react with the baking powder to put bubbles in the muffins, and you'll see them puffing up a bit). Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.

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must remember recipe

Mar. 27th, 2010 | 12:45 pm

I need to write this lentil soup recipe down. We liked it that much!

Garlic Pepper Lentil soup with Rainbow Chard

extra virgin olive oil
1 cup of lentils
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic chopped
at least two teaspoons of Mountain Rose Herbs garlic pepper seasoning salt
6 cups of water
2 vegan bouillon cubes
1/2 cup of Bionaturae strained tomatoes
a bunch of rainbow chard leaves, chopped
1 roma tomato (I usually never have tomatoes in the winter unless they are canned but it came in our produce box so I wanted to use it up)
sea salt lemon juice

Saute the onions. Add 2 cloves of the chopped garlic and tomatoes. Deglaze the pan until mixture is boiling and add the dried/rinsed lentils. Add the water, seasoning and cook for a few hours (at least.)

Heat about a tablespoonful of extra virgin olive in a pan over medium. Add the garlic and let it go until it's light brown. Add the chard and use it to deglaze the pan by rubbing it pretty vigorously around and salting it. As it starts to wilt add the fresh tomato, chopped. Turn off the pan and add lemon juice.

Ladle the soup into bowls and top with a little hill of chard/tomato mixture. I had mine with avocado with sea salt.

I make lentil soup all of the time (at least once every two weeks, sometimes every week) but this was our favorite recipe yet. I think it would be really awesome with mushrooms, too.

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Mar. 23rd, 2010 | 12:13 pm
location: US, Kentucky, Kenton, Covington, Euclid Ave, 1810

I think the pink eye is gone. Woohoo?

My kitchen floor is so clean you could eat off of it. Thank you my new pumice stone and two episodes of Hoarders.

What can I do for my hardwood floors? Previously I've mopped with a string mop but is there anything like a Swiffer out there that has reusable pads and/or is Eco-friendly? Liam's asthma flairs up with any kind of cleaner stronger than Mrs. Meyers. =(

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PIcture Catch Up

Mar. 17th, 2010 | 09:34 pm

Let's hope this works.

Niagara, park dayCollapse )

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(no subject)

Mar. 14th, 2010 | 09:28 am
location: US, Ohio, Hamilton, Cincinnati

I think I'm depressed from leaving Diana's. I can't think of a week since college that I've been this happy and fulfilled. Another Mommune please???? I totally need some secular sisterwives...

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Mar. 13th, 2010 | 08:37 am

There is so much still to process! I was thinking about this past week at jesamin's house tonight as I was laying in my own bed after fourteen hours on the road, trying to feel through it, to judge my reaction to things, my experience with so many new people I've never met in person before, and I think I've come to the conclusion that it's like looking through a prism. I remember bits and pieces and expressions, coupled with the online personas and seeing children in real life that previously only existed in photographs, real children that whined and fought and parents that were frustrated and loving and exasperated and positively bursting with pride. I love my kids deeply but I feel across the spectrum it seems like all of the time and as much as I try to remain calm and collected as a parent, it's next to impossible when faced with so much emotion swarming around you--it was refreshing to see other parents experiencing the same things. It was refreshing to find so much in common with so many new people. And it was so wonderful to find that people that I've known for years online are just as amazing in person, if not more so. Before this, I could have been happy with online friendships but now I think I want to meet up at least once or twice a year with these friends whose lives I feel I have lived right along with them.

Coming into Jefferson on Monday night was harrowing for me. It was much later than we had intended since we had taken one last trip to the Falls so the roads were windy and the towns were deserted (zombies may have been mentioned once or twice.) Then, the big blue house, completely lit with a driveway full of cars, appeared. I had already had a minor breakdown, afraid no one would like me, afraid that I was just going to be overwhelmed, that Liam was going to hurt someone, that Isla would spend the entire stay screaming. Walking in that door was...hard. It was! So many people around, so many conversations that you essentially interrupt, so many overtired, overstimulated kids (mine most definitely included). Carrying luggage over slippery paths carved into twenty inches of snow, trying to get settled, trying to eat something small, put away groceries, keep your children from stealing toys from everyone else's children...there was the thought that I had made a mistake by coming. It was fleeting and I chalked it up to being tired and uncomfortable intruding so late. I went to bed with the hope that the next morning would be better (and redemptionsongs was so welcoming and gracious by taking us over to Gran's house and showing us our room that I was definitely feeling good about getting to know everyone else like I had been looking forward to for months.)

The next morning was better, and the next and the next...I was so blissfully comfortable when we had to leave, although I will admit a tiny bit of homesickness and a definite desire to end my responsibilities for bedtime (which Ryan handles exclusively, thank goodness. I know I couldn't do it all of the time myself like that.) I watched Liam handle himself pretty well, considering the overstimulation. I consider it a success that he mostly managed to keep from hurting himself and other kids without being helicopter-parented, which is absolutely required most of the time. I really enjoyed watching Isla make a friend for the first time in Eloise, dolcedaze's daughter. Friday morning, as Eloise entered the play room, dressed perfectly (as usual), Isla turned to me and said "Mama, she's beyoootiful." And she is! My sister had a wonderful time and only had nice things to say about everyone (which, despite her somewhat tough exterior, Britt is kind of a softie but shhh, don't tell her that.) I had a wonderful time and only have nice things to think and say about everyone! That is exactly how a vacation should end, right?

I can't thank Diana and her family enough for the hospitality shown to us. I swear, she must be superhuman! Granny and Joel also deserve mad props, at the very least. I feel like I've said wonderful way too much, but I can't help but wish that Granny was my grandma. Oh, yes.

Things I've learned:

Traveling pirate girl friends are awesome.
Green popcorn balls are strangely delicious.
Diana owns everything I've ever wanted to own and more.
Urban Outfitter couches are surprisingly comfortable (given I've heard that they are not, I'm now sold.)
Almost any child will eat a cheese quesadilla.
There are places in the Northeast that you have to drive for miles to even get cell service! I don't know why I thought New England was just one big suburban landscape, but I did.
Grandmas can be simultaneously sweet and nice and cool.
Battlestar Galactica love can extend across an ocean or two.
The prospect of hot, teenage werewolves is enough to drive away even the bravest of partners.

<3 <3 <3

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(no subject)

Mar. 8th, 2010 | 01:59 pm
location: United States, New York, Niagara County

Just now getting ready to leave Niagara. We may have been slightly distracted by the casino.

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(no subject)

Mar. 7th, 2010 | 06:42 am
location: US, Ohio, Butler, Beckett Ridge, Eaglet Dr, 5914

On the road--Ohio is boring. Hopefully we'll arrive in Niagara before one.

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