Monday, October 26, 2009

i'm a dick!

i haven't gone out of my way to talk to my sister since the whole "if my daughter isn't in your wedding you're dead to me" debacle. i haven't been a jerk when i've seen her (in fact, i think i've been quite nice!) but i don't call her and i try to just stay out of her way. my mother has noticed this, although aside from the initial "what the fuck?!" talk i had with her i haven't mentioned anything, but i think she's trying to use my birthday to make things better. she's an awesome mom, and i understand and support her, but honestly, i don't really want to play nice with my sister. she can make her deliver my birthday presents or not; i don't care. i don't much care for my birthday to begin with, not getting presents, and not getting them from my asshole sister, doesn't bother me.

it's not like i'm mad about the specifics anymore, but i feel like every time something like this happens i have to be the "good" sister, the one to smooth things over and make everything okay for everyone. i'm just kind of tired of that. she did something shitty, i told her she did something shitty, and i'm okay with us not being "besties" until she does something like (gasp!) apologize. i don't care if everyone worries if we're getting along, because honestly, when we're with mom, i can be as nice as i need to be. i love my niece, and i want to keep seeing her. family get-togethers should be fun and happy and nice for everyone involved, and i will always do my part to make sure there's no drama there. in my everyday, family life though, i'm okay with not talking to her a lot or going out of my way to hang out with my sister. she's made it clear time and time again that her priority is her, and that's fine. it just might not always be my priority.

becoming a pseudo-step-mom, losing my pop, and getting engaged this year definitely changed the way i see things. i'll always love my sister, and i'll always have a kidney for her or a shoulder to cry on, but i'm a lot less likely to be walked all over. i think that's okay. my birthday is going to be a fun, relaxed, low-key event this year; we're going to go see some dumb movie and eat egg rolls for dinner, and that sounds impossibly rad to me. if i get some presents, yay! if not, yay! if my sister wants to act like a grown-up and call me instead of sending some email, then awesome! if not, that's her thing. i'm sick of being forgiving. i'm sick of being the doormat. honestly? i think that's pretty healthy. although if you'll notice, i'm not so above all of this to not want to rant about it in public. :-) what can i say? this is all still new to me.

dinner tonight was awesome

easiest recipe for pork potstickers EVER:

2 cups ground pork (dave ground mine, it was a rough grind)
2 cups finely chopped cabbage (little pieces!)
2 green onions, also finely chopped
1 tsp minced/grated ginger (i used a piece about 3/4 of an inch long)
2 tbs soy sauce
1/4 to 1/2 tsp extra dark soy (i like the mushroom one!)*
1/4 tsp white pepper (or black if that's what you have)
1 tsp sesame oil

mix it up, pack into wrappers, and steam fry them. to do that, put a skillet with a lid on over med. high heat. add a tsp or two of neutral oil to the bottom; add potstickers then about 1/4 to 1/2 cup of water (how much depends on how big your skillet is!), cover it and don't open until they're done, about 7-9 mins. they should be browned on the bottom and soft on top. also, your meat should be cooked through, but you already knew that. you'll have to add more oil to your pan on occasion as you cook them. this is a version of this recipe, but i add more onion and am not picky about what kind of cabbage i use. i am also not good at making the dough, and instead just buy mine. hsiao-ching chou's recipes are always steller, and while she worked for the seattle pi i'd pretty much try anything she recommended. i miss her column, it was my favorite thing about the wednesday food section.

*if you don't have this, no big deal. i buy it at the asian market, it has a deeper, more concentrated flavor than regular soy, and adds a little punch to just about anything you put regular soy in. it's too dark to use as a straight substitute for soy in most recipes, though. add a little and you can always add more, add too much and dinner is ruined.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

good morning, sunshine

sure, it's the middle of the afternoon now, but i can't help that i still feel like morning. i think it's the cup of coffee in my hand and the fact that it hasn't brightened up all day. while i love the fall, and the leaves changing color and the chill that makes a day spent inside seem totally okay, i admit i could do without it getting darker. that's what made fall in colorado so awesome; cool enough to start hibernating, but not dark and dour outside.

this head cold i caught from the kids is making me miserable. it went right into my sinuses first, causing terrible head pain, and now it's in my lungs. awesome! it burns when i breathe. it hurts when i cough. i'm giving myself shaken baby syndrome with the coughing. at the moment, my dear man is out getting some goldenseal to help with the expectoration. i'm certain that everyone wanted to hear about my mucous today, sorry! i just feel lousy, and we all know i am a whiny baby when i don't feel good.

i felt bad enough to take two days off work (!!!), meaning i'm on day four of staying at home. it's like a vacation, albeit snottier. i wish i felt better and could do something more productive than sit on the couch whining or napping. although i did finish a book, introduce the boychild to his first zombie movie, watch a goth opera with him, carve pumpkins, and make a few quiches. i guess i haven't been entirely useless.

i'm also all about putting glitter on various gourds. good times. i suppose i should go take a shower or at least brush my teeth, and pretend to be a grown-up.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

adios, twinkie

it seems every time a person turns around there's some new apocalypse ready to take down humanity (like the year 2000, bird flu, solar eclipses, zombies rising), and right now people seemed freaked out by swine flu and the year 2012. granted, swine flu is about as bad as the "regular" flu, and even the mayans don't buy the year 2012 being the end of the world, but planning for disaster is one of my favorite guilty pleasures. we all know my love of sites that let you prepare for emergency by storing big barrels of raw red wheat and MRE's, and how i try to have a few cans of spam and bottles of water around just in case. with that in mind, i reveal to you the foods i will miss when society crumbles:

  • crunchy cheetos. not the puffed ones, those suck. how can two foods supposedly be from the same family and be so different? the puffy cheeto is an abomination.
  • snickers bars. i don't often eat a whole candy bar, but when i do, i like a snickers bar.
  • marzipan chocolate bars, like the ritter sport. sure, i said i don't eat a lot of candy bars, then listed two back to back. it's just thinking about snickers bars made me think of those dark chocolate squares of almondy goodness that are ritters! so sue me.
  • moons over my hammy, from denny's. anyone can put ham and scrambled egg and processed cheese on toast, sure, but no one does it like denny's.
  • slushies. specifically red ones.
  • red vines! oh my burned-out-shell-of-a-city/kingdom for a tub of red vines.
  • microwave popcorn or jiffy pop. fake butter is somehow more buttery when it's on popcorn. how does that work?
  • doritos. more artificial cheesey goodness. let's throw in frito's while we're here, specifically the chili cheese ones. they make your breath smell bad, but they are delightful.
  • pretty much any kind of chicken strip or nugget you get from a fast-food joint or grocery store. if you have to eat white meat from a chicken, it should be deep fried, crunchy on the outside and dip-able.
  • hot wings!!!! when the world runs out of frank's hot sauce, it will be a dark day for humanity.
  • ranch dressing. i'm sure you can make it yourself, but it's not the same. you know it, i know it, hidden valley makes millions based on that fact alone.

what will you miss?

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

7 layer hair dip

i got a haircut this weekend. everyone at work was getting these cute little bobs, or new highlights, or bangs, and i realized the other day that my hair looked like it came out of 1975. which would be all fine and dandy if i came from 1975 too, but alas, i'm a bit younger than that. a few weeks ago, after school started, i took the girlchild to a hair place that i had a coupon for, not expecting much more than for someone to things up, but the girl who did the haircut was actually great. she gave M these adorable layers, and even when she doesn't brush it, her hair looks cute. lucky for me, that same hairdresser was in this weekend and she not only gave me some layers, but she blew it out and used a straightener on it. it's not too short, it feels all thick and bouncy, and for two days i had the hottest hair on earth. then i washed it.

it's still super cute, don't get me wrong, but at heart i am a lazy girl. i think about buying a hair straightener, i even look up inexpensive ceramic plated ones and sprays to protect my hair against the heat. this week i've been using hair product when i get out of the shower and admiring how my hair doesn't just lay there anymore, but i know soon i'll be back to only combing it once a day after my shower and pinning it back when it annoys me. this week, though, i continue to be cuter than normal, and who knows? maybe this time, i'll get serious about my hair.

(more good news: the hairdresser said she didn't see any lines from the black dye, or any root grow-out! i thought after i stopped using the black dye in may that at some point i would have to have it stripped and taken back to my natural color, but it turns out my natural color is still really close to black and i only have four or five grey hair which are easily pluckable. hooray!)

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

no huffing the cat!

i don't know how cats do it, but when it's fall it's like they suck all that awesome leaves-turning-colors, crisp-air, bright-moonlit-night smell right in their fur. lulu comes in from being out at night and i just want to burrow into her neck and huff that amazing autumn smell that clings to her. i tried to get D to take a smell, "c'mon! you'll love it!" but he looked at me like maybe i was still a *tiny* bit crazy-cat-lady. he doesn't know what he's missing. cat ladies, you know what i mean.

today work was impossibly dull. i'll regret saying that out loud tomorrow, when i'm sure it will be a mad house. we watched observe and report tonight, and i have to say, it was a lot darker and less ha-ha funny than you might expect from the trailer, but i enjoyed it. it was terrible and wrong and dry and funny sometimes in that oh-my-god-people-are-really-like-that kind of way. i might have to watch it again. i made a butternut squash soup with roasted, carmelized onions, and it was really good. evidently no one was stoked about it because they all dislike squash soup, but everyone tried it and oddly enough, the all liked it too. i'm a dorky happy homemaker at times, and i admit that made me happy. i need to go hang some scrubs up so i have something to wear tomorrow to work, and i think it's time for a teeth brush and bed. damn, i'm exciting.

Monday, October 05, 2009

stare deep into my eyes

yesterday D, the girlchild and me went out to various farms around the skagit valley on the family farm tour. it was awesome. we had a bright sunny day, a few places we wanted to see, but no real agenda. the drive itself would have been worth it, but we also got to see a ton of animals, working farms, and take a hayride. i can't think of a better way to use a sunday.

mom called from the road last night and so far she's having fun. this is the first time she's made the trip on her own, and while i'm sure sometimes it gets boring to drive by yourself, she brought some books on CD and likes being able to take her time. or not, as she's mentioned frequently that she loves that the speed limit in parts of montana is 75.

i think it's time for coffee and a shower, and to try to make the house look presentable. we'll see how clean things get, though, i might wait for kids to come home and help!

Saturday, October 03, 2009

we have a reservation

my mom is on her way to the rez today. she's going to visit my aunties and my pop's cousins. about a year ago she and my dad went back together, and had a good time. i think she misses my dad enough to want to just be near his people. i wish i could have gone with her, but i just can't take two weeks off work. it would be nice to be with my pop's family, my family, to hear the stories about him and spend some time with people who loved him as much as i did. i hope mom has a good time, and calls me a lot from the road.