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Human, Woman, Wife, Mother, Daughter, Sister, Friend & Aspiring Unicorn Breeder

9.29.2014

Moo's Sausage Chowder Recipe

I made a chicken chowder the other day that turned out pretty darn tasty. It was rich, creamy, and perfect for the fall weather (and our head colds).

My daughter requested that I make it again, only this time using sausage instead of chicken, so I flipped some ingredients around and made a lovely sausage chowder just for her. I must say, it was equally delicious! 

Now if you absolutely hate sausage then you can sub it with chicken, use cream of chicken instead of cream of celery, and use 1 cup of regular cream in place of the beer (my original chicken chowder recipe). 

Keep in mind that I cook for a small army, so if your family is smaller you can freeze what you won't eat and save it for a cold, rainy day. Also there's lots of chopping involved, so feel free to do the chopping the night before. Oh, and when I say chopped I mean diced really big.. You basically want cubes. Anyway, you can also just throw it in a large crockpot the next morning if you're feeling lazy. I've included cooking directions for both stovetop and crockpot cooking. 

Moo's Sausage Chowder

Ingredients:
1 - cup chopped carrots
2 - cups chopped precooked sausage (kielbasa, brats, cocktail weenies, it really doesn't matter)
1 - med coursely chopped yellow onion
2 - chopped celery stalks (approx 1/2 c)
4 - medium diced gold potatoes (approx 4 c)
1 - can drained whole kernel corn 
1 - can undrained diced tomatoes 
2 - tbsp fresh chopped parsley
1 - tsp each* salt & fresh ground pepper
1/2 - tsp whole celery seed 
1 - tbsp minced garlic
1 - tbsp yellow mustard
1 - can of cream of whatever soup (I used celery)
1-  32 oz carton vegetable broth
1 - can cheap beer (I used Coors Light... don't judge me)
1 - 8 oz pkg cubed cream cheese

*Optional - Shredded sharp cheddar cheese (to taste) and a loaf of crusty bread to sop up the last juicy bits.


Directions:
Pour all of the ingredients into a large stock pot and bring to a boil.

Turn down the heat to med-low, cover and simmer for an hour (stirring occasionally).

OR.... If you're feeling lazy...

Throw everything in a *large* crockpot and cook on low for 6-ish hours.


Serve hot and (if desired) top with shredded sharp cheddar and serve with crusty bread.

Eat & enjoy!!


*Recipe & pics by: Me

9.28.2014

Historical Romance Shromance.

I love reading historical novels (both fiction and nonfiction) and watching TV and movies about different eras (medieval, victorian, etc, etc). Especially the ones filled with romance. Everything seems so dashing and grand. Almost makes a girl wanna teleport to the past.

But then I *really* get to thinking about it and I can't imagine living in any of those eras... 

Once upon a time women were nothing more than property. They could inherit nothing. Any monies from their birth families went to their (sometime distant) male relatives or husband. 

They had no say, no voice, in anything having to do with their own lives. 

They married who they were told to marry. They were expected to give birth to male children and were looked down upon and sometimes punished if they didn't. They were expected to put up with and keep quite about their husbands mistresses. And they were deemed lunatics or crazy or whores if they didn't abide by the standards that men set before them. 

A woman's sole purpose was to be attractive and entertaining enough to land a "good husband" (even if he was horrid and cruel) and then she was expected to dote on him for the rest of her life... with no expectation of any reciprocation.  

Most women were not educated beyond singing, dancing, needlework, and such. There were no grand expectations and nothing great to aspire to. If she had dreams of her own they would most likely never come to fruition.

A husband could beat & abuse his wife, have affairs & illegitimate children and his wife could not petition for divorce. However a man could divorce his wife for any number of reasons and leave her with nothing, not even her children from a precious marriage or any so called "inheritance" she may have been left. For some women marriage was a lifetime prison sentence.

I can't even begin to imagine having no voice... can't imagine my will being crushed to nothing. I can't fathom having absolutely no say in my own life. 

When I think of it on a personal level it makes the women from past generations who fought for our rights seem all the more brave. Because as much as I love corsets, and big froufrou gowns, and the romance portrayed in film and in books, I have a feeling that I'd probably be one of those women who got burned at the stake or thrown in an asylum. 

I'm so glad I was born in modern times and have a for real happily ever after. 

I can still wear corsets. In fact I can wear what ever the hell I want thanks to the brave ladies who came before me!!





9.27.2014

Mean Girls.

I've come to realize that there are always going to be mean girls.

No matter what your age, they're lurking around every corner... just waiting to tear into you. No matter how beautiful, successful, or wonderful of a person you are there's always going to be that girl, or group of girls, that's going to try and beat you down... sometimes in a flat-out "you're hideous and I'm better than you" kind of way. And always in that maddening, passive-aggressive "oh that's not what I meant" kind of way.

Why?

I love my fellow ladies. I have friends who, like myself, are not conventional beauties (i.e not size 4 photoshopped supermodels) and I have friends who could grace the pages of Victorias's Secret. Either way I feel like part of my job as their friend, and fellow female, is to build them up.  

I feel like this applies to gals I don't know as well. When I'm out shopping I pay (sincere) compliments to strangers. When I meet someone new I do the same. Women on my online social networks get the same treatment. I do this because I feel that the world is hard enough on our looks as it is. 

And honestly, all these girls I see are beautiful. All women are beautiful. We all have something spectacular about us that makes us shine. It makes me supremely happy to point out what they sometimes have a hard time seeing in themselves. 

Even celebrities aren't immune. They get bashed about their looks everyday by everyday women: "too thin" or "lips are too big" or "ass is too big" and "hair looks like shit" or "titties are droopy" and blah, blah, blah.

Why?

I got the passive agressive treatment on a makeup group I was invited to on the Facebook. I posted a makeup look and in the thread beneath it a contrasting look. The feedback was nice and I was able to (hopefully) teach some new gals some new tricks. 

However I noticed a snarky picture posted not long after that... It was obviously mocking someone. I'm fairly certain that someone was me, but even if it wasn't....

Why?

9.26.2014

School Daze.

Much like their mother, my boys hate school. Our oldest ditched traditional schooling in favor of an alternative military school. We were actually really shocked kind of surprised when he loved it and excelled... He became an officer and lead the other guys. It was a super proud moment for us as parents.

Our middle kid (the youngest son) also hates school but doesn't have the issues our eldest had - i.e. douchebags physically tormenting him everyday - so we're not going the same route. He's a senior and only has a few more months until he's done with school forever. I say forever because I'm pretty positive he's not going to college.

It's been a struggle with this middle one of mine. He was a 9th grader for three years in a row. We actually presented him with an award when he moved on up to the next grade. 

Don't be jealous of my handiwork...

At any rate, with much yelling, a little patience, a lot of grounding, a helluva lotta parental tenacity, and the help of my inlaws - (he's spent the last two summers at their house doing nothing but summer school to make up for all of the classes he's failed and to get ahead to the grade he's supposed to be in) - he's right on track to graduate. 

Finally.

You'd think he'd be running for the home stretch. But he's not. He's still lazing about, not doing anything until he's pulled along, forcefully I might add, to do so. I don't ask for much, really. I just want to see this kid walk across the damn stage in his cap and gown. We've all put in enough blood, sweat, and tears and were ready to be done with this nonsense. In fact I dare say we've done more actual work than he has to get him this far. Graduating is the very least he could do for us, but more importantly, for himself. 

But still, he refuses to do much of anything... simply because he doesn't like school. He's like an ostrich sticking it's head in the sand or a donkey refusing to move. He's the hardest worker I've ever seen when it comes to literally anything that's not school. But school? Meh. We get nada from him.

It's very frustrating. 

Even the cat does more homework...

Husband is taking a leave of absence come January to finish up his degree and I decided to go back to work. This means I can no longer hold middle kid's hand and pull him through to the end. 

We explained to him that HE has to do this for himself. We also explained that he's going to have to ride the bus to and from his two schools because we don't let people get drivers liscences when they make D's and F's. 

He was not very pleased with this.

I start work in three weeks and decided it would be a good idea to go up to the school, have a meeting with him and his guidance counselor, and plot out EXACTLY how his day will go so that there is NO question as to how he's supposed to get from point A to point B and back to point A again.  

She didn't see why this needed to be done, I mean he's a SENIOR after all. She looked at me like I was bonkers. But I explained to her that if we didn't outline every. single. thing. then he would make excuses and not be where he was supposed to.

Seriously point A to Point B isn't that difficult.

So after much proding and explaining, the counselor wrote down his daily schedule, step-by-baby-step and then I went over it with him to ensure he understood everything.

Now mind you, our son isn't slow or "special"... He's got all of his facilities in working order. In fact they work SO well that he's figured out how to scam everyone into believing that he "got confused" or "didn't understand" or "forgot" or a zillion other excuses for getting out of things he doesn't want to do.  

Anywho, I also decided we needed to do a test run before I started work to make double positive sure that he did what he was supposed to do. Yesterday was his first day riding the bus to his other school. And guess what?

Guess.

Seriously, take a wild gander. 

What do you think he did?

Did he take the bus like he was supposed to?

Yes, no, or maybe... Pick a box. 

Did he go or no?
....................

The million dollar question... Did he go?

NO. 
HE. 
DIDN'T. 

He missed the bus. Which means he missed his class at the prestigious fine arts school that he barely got accepted into in the first place!! 

Instead he walked on over to his home-schooled friends house and hung out while the mom was at work.

Of course he claimed there was no bus to be found... Claimed he couldn't find anyone, anywhere, in the entire school who could give him any information pertaining to said bus.... Claimed he tried, but there was nothing to be done. 

He tried to lie.

But I knew. I always know.

So I text him to let him know that *SURPRISE* I could pick him up from the fine arts school and take him home, instead of him having to ride the bus back to his first school.

No response.

The guitar he needs that he left at home.

So I waited.

He finally called me, (after he had time to walk home from his friends house and act like he had walked straight home from school), stuttering his nonsense about no bus.

That's when I did what any other mom in her right mind would do: I collected my wayward kid and drove his ass directly back up to the first school to speak to the guidance counselor and explain that he simply doesn't understand how to get on a bus. 

Middle child was not pleased.

Guidance counselor was not pleased. 

Kiddo was even less pleased when I asked the counselor if I could eat lunch with him the following day and walk him up to the bus, you know, since he had such a difficult time figuring out what to do. Guidance counselor, however, was happy to oblige my request.

So that's exactly what the fuck I did today. I sat with him in the cafeteria, in front of all the other students, picked at his cold french fries and tried my best to stand out like a sore thumb.

I contemplated wearing a mumu, but decided against, if only because of my own vanity. 

Are you kids ready to ROCK?!

I walked my baby boy to the bus and asked him if he understood how to ride a bus now. One of his friends asked him if he needed to be put in time-out. I had to stifle a laugh. Once we reached the bus I told him I loved him, walked back to my car, and drove home. I waved at him in the bus as I passed it. I don't know if he saw me or not but I'm sincerely hoping he did and that it embarrassed the hell outta him. 

Now I know some of you out there are probably thinking a. This bitch is long-winded and b. What a horrid mother to want to embarrass her kid like that. But lemme tell you, I'd rather embarrass that child daily and watch him graduate, than to keep the peace and watch him fail. 

The moral of my long story is this: a mom's gotta do what a mom's gotta do. So I'm #sorrynotsorry my dear children. I will happily embarrass you if it'll motivate you to do better. Because I love you all. 

Hubby and me: Kickin' kid ass (out of love) since 1996!
All pics by: Moi

9.14.2014

The Bell Tower

A short poem-story for you, dear readers....

THE BELL TOWER


It was cool by the water. 


He on the bench with his book; me on the blanket at his feet with mine. 


The bell tower stood tall in the distance, clanging to let us know it was now 4 o'clock.


He glanced at it and wondered aloud if there was a way to get to the top.


"Of course there is." I told him "Can't you see the stairs?" 


He told me, "Let's go. I want to kiss you in the top of that tower." 


I think I blushed when I told him I did too.


So off we went to steal a kiss. 


It was all terribly romantic until we started climbing... 


..................


....and remembered we're both deathly afraid of heights. 


We stole a hasty kiss, somewhere around step 12, arms solidly wrapped around iron railings instead of one another.


As we descended he peeled one hand from the railing and offered it to me, the most chivalrous thing in the world at that moment.


I giggled like a school girl. Partly from giddiness, mostly from nerves.


At the bottom, full of relief, and with people fast approaching, we stole another peck.


And then, hand in hand, we wandered off to explore the gardens, and one another, from the safety of the ground.



Pic By: Me
True Story.

9.10.2014

Slumpy Slump Slump.

So I'm in a funky slump. 

I generally have a great self esteem, but lately I'm feeling unusually blah about myself. I'm pretty sure everyone goes through this. And I'm thinking it's because I'm fast approaching 40, which I didn't think bothered me. 

But maybe it does bother me. 

Catherine Denavue once said that as we age, we ladies have to decide between our ass and our face. Bascially you either have a great face and a fat ass, or a great ass and a haggard face. Well I want my ass AND my face to look good. 

My face is hanging in there with neary a wrinkle in sight; facially speaking I could pass for someone in her 20s. But I'm starting to feel super blah about my chubby, gravity-succumbing body.

You see my husband has a body somewhere between Hugh Jackman of Wolverine fame and Sam Heughan of Outlander fame. Now don't get me wrong, I'm ridiculously happy about that. In fact I'm constantly making him take his shirt off just so I can oggle him. How is THAT a problem, you ask?

Well sometimes, not all the time, (and forgive the TMI), when we're engaged in grownup happy time my mind goes from "omgtkklahdrjjt...." to "wow he's so fucking hot" to "oooh fuck, he's so fucking HOT... ohhhh shit...wait... He's so fucking hot... how can he actually be turned on by all of this droopy flab?!" 

And all the time, when we're out in public walking around, hands entwined, I wonder if people look at us and think "They seriously don't match" or "What in the world is he doing with that fat girl". 

Then I start to feel bad about myself.

Now I know that the problem is all in my head. His being physically fit doesn't have anything to do with me. It doesn't have anything to do with how he feels about me either. He's always told me, "When you're thinner I like thinner girls and when you're bigger I like bigger girls. Whatever you are is what I like, because I like you." And I know he honestly feels that way. (I know, I know. He's perfect... Don't hate me.) He's always complimenting me and telling me how beautiful/hot/sexy I am... boobies-yay, butt-hooray, etc, etc. And his hands seem to be magically attracted to me body, like they're made of magnets and my body is metal - (haha, funny I know).

But I'm not seeing myself that way anymore, so in my mind how can he? 

I've joined a gym and I've been going, but it's not helping my self esteem. When I work out my mind just wanders to thoughts of, "If I actually lose weight is my face going to go all to hell?!" Then I panic  and get unmotivated. 

I'm just not used to feeling like this. I haven't felt bad about myself in many, many years (even at my fattest) and I really don't like it. I dunno. I know I can't defeat the effects of time, but I'm just not ready to have to choose between my ass and my face. I don't know how to get back to where I was, back when I felt like a goddess supreme.

Don't judge me for being so damn superficial. I know that what's in my heart is the most important thing, but the world doesn't look at me heart and my husband doesn't have sex with my heart. I want to look and feel attractive, damn it. And as contrary as this sounds, given everything I've just said, it's not for the world and it's not for my husband. I want this for me. I'm tired of projecting my negative feelings about myself into others. I want my confidence back.  

Internet Pic by: The Internet
I'm feeling this today for reals.