Monthly Archives: April 2008

Across the street…


is a park.  A few acres of woods where we run around and pretend we live far away from the city.



I messed up the cookies…


I was scheduled to bring the snacks this week for the fellowship time we have between our church service and Sunday school.  Really this is kind or daunting, as the bar is set pretty high.  Most Sundays there is quite the spread, fresh fruits, coffee cake, crackers, cheeses, hummus, coffee and a couple different kinds of juice.  Some Sundays it is even more exciting, and there are Ho-Hos(my favorite) and Twinkies, and even Kool aid. 

So, being the insecure, I-want-everyone-to-like-me, person that I am, I was really feeling the pressure.  How could I bridge the gap between the 2 extremes? 


Because they  are homemade, they are somehow acceptable for the healthy folks, and because they are loaded with chocolate chips, butter and 2 kinds of sugar, well, those of us who come down on the Ho-Ho camp are satisfied as well.

So I went to work.  Fired up the trusty Kitchen-Aid, set the butter out to soften, unearthed the measuring spoons and cups. 

I put 2 recipes out in front of me, figuring that I would look them both over and decide which one I would use.  Well, I started with one recipe, and somewhere in the middle of things realized that I had been mixing the 2.   Now the recipes were similar, but not the same, and I suffer from a bit of a chocolate chip cookie curse anyway.  My blood pressure went through the roof. 

I tried to figure out what I did, started doing calculations in my head, throwing in more of this and that. 


Live next door to Whole foods, so took a little break from the mayhem, and bought more flour, at 4x the price I would normally pay(but hey, the flour came in a lovely recycled and compostable bag).

At some point it be came apparent that my beloved Kitchen-Aid would not be able to handle the 5 cups of butter, 8 eggs, 3.25 cups of brown sugar(packed of course), 10 tsp of vanilla, 60 ounces of chocolate chips and the 11.5 cups of flour that were needed to bring recipe into line with the original 2.5 cups of white sugar I had dumped in the bowl. 

So I creamed the eggs, sugars, butter, and vanilla.  And I put all the rest of the ingredients into the largest bowl I had.  I then mixed them together.  and mixed and mixed and mixed.  It was a monumental task.  I was literally up to my elbows in cookie dough. 

Then I had to bake them.  Because I had sort of rescued this recipe, I wasn’t sure exactly how they were going to bake(did I really put in enough baking soda and salt, or was it too much).  So I messed with times and temps and finally, after about 1.5 hours of cookie baking I had the information I needed.  I also had a load of cookie mistakes. 

Said a little prayer and baked the rest. 

3 hours later, I loaded the finished product into the car and headed for church. 

After the fellowship time was done, I surveyed the damage.  4 cookies left. 

It was a cookie miracle. 



it is supposed to snow a bit.  It probably won’t stick to the ground, and I won’t have to shovel.   It won’t be the 15 inches they got in Fergus Falls, Minnesota this weekend, or the 21 inches that fell in Anchorage, Alaska on Friday, but it is supposed to snow, here, in Madison. 


After all these years…


I really should have it figured out. I always know WHEN, it’s the WHAT that throws me. Sadly, I am a slow learner.

For the 14 of the last 23 years (this is factoring in pregnancy and over 6  years of breastfeeding), every month it has been the same thing. 

I puff up like a blow-fish, face breaks out, mood alternates between weeping sap and Brunhilda the bad witch. 

I  know this is coming, and each month, after some sort of emotional devastation, I say to myself:

 “next month, I will know this is coming, and I will take it is stride when my kids behave like children, I won’t freak out when they forget to take their dishes to the sink, or protest about a shower.”

and each month I say to my self:

“next month, I will remember, it is not great writing that is making me weep when I read this book, it is a just a book, not some heretofore untold revelation about the human spirit”. 

And so this month:

It was all a big surprise again.  (I guess in someways that is fine, after all, it probably means that Dave can give me the same gift every year for my birthday and I will be equally thrilled each time.)

Yesterday, I was listening to a good book, not a great book, when the end of the story sent me sobbing from the kitchen in a frantic search for tissue. 

Yesterday, I couldn’t button my pants.

Yesterday, Kjell noticed that I had more pimples on my face than he does. 

Yesterday, I blew my top when soccer gear was left in the middle of the den.    

Next month, it WILL be different.  I am going to make a little sign to remind me, maybe 8×10 ft, and place it above the couch in the living room.  Neon letters, perhaps, that say:

“PMS: coming soon to this living room, don’t miss it!”




Julia Navy Seal Lawrence

Julia Navy Seal Lawrence. 

 She is a 1 1/2 inch long baby Gecko lizard and joins Entropy(the dog) and Rock-Head and Fighter Pilot(the rats). 

Julia Navy Seal Lawrence is Sunny’s pet, but as Sunny is a generous and loving sister, she allowed “the Brothers” to have some input during the naming process. 


It was a dark and stormy night…


or maybe just a gray and rainy day.  Either way it turned out to be the perfect time to make a new friend.

I came home from a breakfast meeting to find a car disabled in the street right in front of our house, blocking the road. 

And this car wasn’t just a little disabled, it had a broken tie-rod.  It wasn’t going ANYWHERE!

And this car was’t just blocking a little bit of the road, it was COMPLETELY blocking the road. 

It was cold and raining and no one who drove onto the scene was happy about being re-routed, so we invited the driver into our house to wait for the tow truck. 

Over the next 1.5 hours we talked and laughed and drank coffee.  Sunny filled our guest in on every aspect of our lives, showed her photo albums, drew her pictures.  We watched the cars drive up, survey the situation and leave.  Some seemed unfazed, other felt it important to honk at the driver-less car (we never did figure out why people honked).  We chatted with the police officer who came by to take a look. 

It was a great way to spend a dreary morning.