Monday, November 20, 2017

The Johnsons

Years ago, many members of my family went to a lovely Asian Fusion restaurant near Mom's condo for a celebratory dinner.

We terrorized the place.

I don't know what happened, I don't know what was in the wine, but I do know that at the end of the meal, we all had our napkins on our heads.

Oh, it was celebratory all right.

On Saturday night, many members of my family were dining on a lovely chicken tiki masala dinner the lovely Jacqueline prepared for us, and we were reminiscing about the restaurant, and how we could never go there again.

"We'd have to have an alias," Mistah suggested. "We'd have to say we're the Johnsons." "From Newbrey," added Jacquie.

They'll never recognize us.

And that, my friends, is how this weekend is progressing.

 We're rolling . . .

. . . we're toasting . . .

 . . . we're -- okay, they're -- walking . . .  (And thank you, Mom, for letting me steal all your photos.)

. . . we're feasting . . .

. . . and believe me. That Asian Fusion restaurant had nothing on either Jacquie's tiki delight, or yesterday's Lebanese Birthday Lovefest.

Wait, did somebody say Birthday?

Happy Day to our Darling Littlest! 

(And thanks you two for saving the day with the 5:53 packy run . . . )

Now, let's keep this weekend rolling.

Ellie Johnson

Monday, November 13, 2017

The Parm

Because we were forced to boycott our favorite local place that usually cooks for us, we had no choice but to take matters into our own hands on Saturday night . . .

. . .  that's right. Mistah and I. Saturday night. Chicken Parm, baby.

Bring it.

First step, bread crumbs. Made out of the bread from our local favorite local place that we were forced to boyc . . . oh wait.

Hey, the bread was in the freezer. What were we going to do, waste it? We're campers; we don't waste food.

. . . plus the bread crumbs came out great.

Next step?

Sauce. Actually, that was my first step, but who's counting?

And then? This may sound astounding but neither Mistah nor I have ever done that dredge-dip-dredge thing . . .

. . . and man is that fun.

Dredge . . .

. . . dip . . .

. . . dredge . . .

. . . repeat . . .

. . . until you have a plateful of raw-yet-coated chickens.

And then? You know what to do . . . 

. . . sauté those bad boys for a minute or two a side, in the olive oil in the cast iron.

. . .  put them in the baking dish . . .

. . .  put way too much mozzarella cheese upon them . . .

. . . and way too much sauce and way too much Parmesan. Because you are you and you are Schleck, and you overcheese and oversauce everything.

You are you! Oversauce away. Overcheese it like you mean it.

Put the conglomeration in . . .

. . . take it out . . .

. . . and marvel at the curly-cue steam coming off of it. I mean, if you could patent those steam curly cues, wouldn't you?

Wait, never mind. Forget that. Do not pursue that; that's my idea.

Anyway. Eschew boring ol' spaghetti for fancy Tagliatelle Nests, plate it up, and . . . 

. . .  Dinnah!

With a spinach salad, natch.

And because we are us, because we are we, sauce drips all over everything, and wrecks the photos . . . and because of that, we love it all the more.

Bon Appétit!

Friday, November 10, 2017

rise up

So I got a standing desk this week! It's very exciting. I feel quite smug and smart and revolutionary. The whole process has been a boost to recent workplace doldrums, because the desk I had in my office was a literal behemoth. LITERAL.

Wait, wtf even is a behemoth?

Please hold......

behold, the Behemoth aka my former desk

Okay, that was distracting. What da? Let's move on. Look at that belly, though! It's like looking in the mirror.

Anyway. In order to rid myself of the Behemoth, I had some decluttering to do. I spent entire days going through really important papers, like parent letters I'd typed out in 1988, back when my signature still had little curly cues on the fringe. I was dogged and relentless. I filled bin after bin with recyclables, and gleefully discarded decades of uselessness. It felt great!

My standing desk arrived on Wednesday as scheduled. I dug through the hastily assembled containers which held items that had passed the brutal screening process to be deemed still necessary, found all of my computer parts, and put my shit back together.

5 minutes later, I logged on and got caught up on the half day I'd been unplugged (the very day we were discussing our thanksgiving menu! rude.), and got busy with my standing up work. Yay!

5 minutes later, I shifted positions.

5 minutes later, I stretched.

5 minute later, I sat down and ordered one of these

Hahahahahah just kidding. Or as Clara would say "jay kay, el oh el".

I did, however, read up a little. I learned that I need some class of anti fatigue mat and a footstool, I should wear good shoes and squeeze my butt cheeks, and I should work up to longer stretches with walks and sits at regular intervals.

It's a brave new world. I'll rise up, in spite of the ache. 

Monday, November 6, 2017

Dance Partay

It started out innocently enough . . .

. . .  as these things always do.

We had some friends over . . .

. . . because we have a Field . . .

. . . and because they are cute. . .

. . . kinda cute . . .

 . . . okay deeply cute.

A football was tossed, a frisbee was thrown, a soccerball was kicked, there was hiding and there was seeking.

And of course photos of our athletic endeavors do not exist; the photographist was himself was the chief athleticizer.

But then the wind and the rain and the why . . . why . . . why?

And so  . . . inside. To the world's most unchildproof home . . . 

. . . where there was -- quite clearly -- only one thing to do at a time like this . . .

You know it, I know it.

That's right . . . 

Dance Par-tay.


We held hands by twos and by threes . . .

. . . but it was all about the fours . . .

. . . because we are quite a quartet of dancing machine.

We were rocking it.

And let me ask you this . . .

. . . has anybody gazed upon you like Baby Bea does upon me here?

Because I am here to tell you . . . it's pretty great.

But let's not get distracted . . .

. . . we've got some dancing to do.

Friday, November 3, 2017

don't believe a word I say

Maybe I secretly like Halloween? I don't think that I do. And yet I keep talking about it. Maybe I need to get a life. I have unfinished business, though:

First of all:

It was 2015. Isn't she gorge? I could never pull off that lipstick.
I got nuthin from 2016, but it was a weird time for us, having just embarked on the new normal, and then the whole world went sideways on election day. Wait, let me make sure. 

homigod. I did publish a Halloween post last year! It's phenomenal.


Photo Friday: self portrait

Meet the newest member of our Halloween family:

Isn't she lovely?
At 3:51am, no less. Geez, I was having a moment back then. We are totally well adjusted now, look:


Punkin Seeds!
I love roasting pumpkin seeds. I love sorting through the guts to separate seed from pulp. I love the smell of them roasting, I love choosing seasonings and flavor profiles and wine pairings. The whole process gives me joy. 

Sweet and savory
The sweet ones taste like churros with the cinnamonny sugar sensation. The savory are for the pure with just oil and salt. Yum. The one thing I never really do with pumpkin seeds is eat them. I'll throw them into my salad for a few days until I forget, then I'll yell at everyone when they've been sitting on the counter for a month and I'll finally throw them away sometime around Thanksgiving.

Finally, Halloween night arrived! I stopped for candy and other necessities on my way home from work

Our first trick or treater took me by surprise, he was like 18 inches tall and dressed as Davy Crocket. It was still light out. I thought it would be a slow night, falling on a Tuesday

An hour later:

People still pounded on the door! The noive.
And then it was November, and all that was left of Halloween were the empty, soulless gourds:

So gross. 

Of course, the decorations will stay up until I reach the brink of madness. It was a mixed bag of 

The battery operated votive candle was shoved in through this guy's eyehole, so he continues to sparkle

Tree demon, loose bones, spiderwebs, and little orange lights wrapped around the trunk

The witch legs were a new addition this year. I think they add a touch of whimsy and a nice pop of color to the otherwise drab unearthed grave area

High security lights for our safety and protection

The crypt garage keeper
And what's that over yonder on the other security light?

Um....... nerd demon?
Totally well adjusted in 2017