The Stream

Saturday, June 21, 2008


I am now going to poll you people of girlish decent about eyelashes. I'm just curious if curling your eyelashes is a craze of the past or if it is a must for luscious lash survival. I couldn't be more passionate about this survey.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Mat, you are to us...

The bread winner
The Oreo cookie stacker and snacker
The well-tuned biker and hiker
The kid tickler
The take your lunch to work everyday budgeter
The white cloud on-caller
The food processor turner on-er
The furniture builder
The homemade mashed potato, sushi, and ice cream maker
The kick my bottom at Scrabble-er (use all your letters for a 50point bonus-ERRR!)
The personal hair trimmer
The fly-fisher
The technologer
The photographer
The doesn't get ruffleder
The vocabuler
The Trivial Pursuiter
The right doer
The father.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

In his own words (sort of)

Becket gave his first talk in primary today. Micah also wants to share the spotlight and tries to take down the camera. Amen.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Random Ruminations

Mat returned home from his conference in Boston. He was supposed to arrive home at 11:30 PM, but the flight was delayed and he finally rolled in at 4Am. Sadly, he was on call the next night and after a few retinal detachments and a flood of consults later, he again rolled in at 4AM. He then had to get up at the crack-o-dawn and drive to Fayetteville (1 1/2 hr away) to operate. Seeing that he was a tad foggy and fearing for his patients, I offered to be his "Driving Miss Daisy," which he responded, "Thank you kindly ma'am."

After operating that day, we decided to visit the special ops museum (Surprisingly, Mat hadn't hit his wall yet). Fayetteville is located 10 minutes east of Fort Bragg, home of the paratroopers and special operational forces. If you visit you will see a lot of waving flags, tattooed, bic haired men with cuffed sleeved t-shirts, and sometimes their overdue pregnant wives. Fayetteville offers some nice museums that give you some insight on war and some relief from the 100 degree heat. In this museum, you see a complete history of how war was/is fought from the perspective of the special ops teams. There were buttons on uniforms that had hidden compasses, silent guns, maps made from cloth so that they didn't make noise, MacGyver door picks, fatal wound piercing knives, books that could explode, hidden cameras in cigarette boxes, etc. If you were into GI Joe fighting the fierce terrorist COBRA or like to play the Call of Duty Four Modern Warfare, you would like this museum.

I believe my second child is going to be reincarnated as Tigger. She is constantly making up words like Tigger: cruncher (stapler), milky (milk), spicey (soda), or phrases like: I'm going to stepity up there, you've got to reachy reach your arms, put me on the hangerdabars so I can swingy swing. My first born has already transformed himself into a coati for over a month, seriously! Gloves and dark Sunday socks for paws, tail made of curtain cord adorned with masking tape to create the stripe look, and pointy orange ears to top it all off. These trappings only come off for bath time, swimming and church (which technically he's still wearing his feet paws).

My ears are addicted to Q-tips, especially in the mornings and after showers.

Long time listener, first time sealer. I got my paws on the church's sealer-o-matic. Never done it before, so I thought I would try. I hauled all of my food surplus up to Gretchen and Micah's room to stow it under Gretchen's bed. Not wanting to haul my 50lb bags back down the stairs again, I set up my shop after the girls were asleep. There I was at 11PM at night thinking, "no rice shortage here." After my prep was complete and oxy absorbers intact, I dragged my bins to the my bathroom and turned on this mass of a machine. It looked like it could have once inhabited the island of Lost mostly pertaining to the Dharma initiative. As not to transform myself off the island, I turned the apparatus on. I read the directions 10 times before doing anything and then I carefully poked and prodded as to be sure that what the directions were telling me were true. I stuck in my gently folded mylar bags and voila! food for the next century.

I truly smell like a patch of onions from mowing the lawn.

Friday, June 6, 2008

The Weekend

So I was thinking, what is everyone going to do this weekend? I wouldn't normally have to think about what I'm doing, but since thee ol' husband is leaving for a conference to Boston, Friday to Sunday, I've seemed to find myself in a stupor. I could stay home, but that would make it a painful day cooped up in the house with the kids. I could clean the garage to get ready for the renters, but that would take the fun out of it for Mat. I could go swimming since the humidity has found us in this 95 degree weather, but that is often challenging with my not so qualified swim team. I'm sure I will think of something. I already know that we are having breakfast and chocolate popcorn for dinner.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Why we eat...

We've been married for almost a decade now (even though it feels like longer), and in that time we've eaten a lot of stuff (imagine all the stuff we might have eaten and times it by 3, and that's not even the half of it). Upon reflecting on all the edibles we've consumed in that time, we might say of any particular dish "that's in my top 5 Scandinavian puff pastries" or "that would have to be one of the top 7 edible insects I've ever had." So here we will attempt to make our ultimate top ten list in no particular order (except the very bottom one is the best and they get progressively worse from there). These are the top ten things we have ever eaten, ever, ever.

  • Fish tacos. This particular recipe, sent to us by Dannielle Larkin, is one of the best we have ever tried. We've made them with salmon and tilapia (even fish sticks once when we were desperate) and they are always good.

  • Peanut butter pretzels and Nutella. Frankly, anything with Nutella is good (including my personal favorite - Nutella and Nutella), but this combination is a real winner. If you can't find peanut butter pretzels, apple slices are a good substitute.

  • Pupusas. The people of El Salvador aren't only famous for their uniquely bad dentistry and frequent governmental coups, they also went to heaven and brought back a little dough wrapped ball of salted pork, beans and cheese, patted it flat, fried it up, and gave it to the Earth as the pupusa. If you want one, you can either try this recipe, or go to a pupuseria and have them made for you. We have several in Durham, our favorite being !Coma Rico! who recently improved their Durham County sanitation score from 92 to an impressive 97.5!

  • Chicken Tikka Masala. If you don't like Indian food you're a racist or a communist . . . fascist . . . terrorist . . . something disagreeable. Fact is, if I were on a dessert island and all I had was chicken, cumin, yogurt, cinnamon, paprika, salt, heavy cream, cilantro, cayenne pepper, garlic, lemon juice, ginger, tomato sauce and a jalapeno, I could easily survive on this dish. Also on the island I'd have a brick oven for cooking na'an, and some shelter and other crap.

  • Sweet Potato Biscuits. We currently live in the South, which means we know what corn-pone is and you don't. We also know that you can make biscuits out of anything, but after you've made them out of sweet potatoes, you won't bother with anything else.

  • Tokyo Diner House Special Sushi: We've eaten plenty of sushi that we've liked, but we both have to agree that this was the best single roll we've ever eaten. It's got cooked fish on top with a special sauce made of Okinawan crystal meth and nicotine extract. It's not addictive, we can stop eating it anytime we want to, we just don't want to right now.

  • Irmita's Torta (back when it was only $6.00 and their restaurant was still dirty). This may be the only dish on the list not currently available in the form we remember it. Irmita, in her lust for money, moved from her Bluff Street shack in St. George, Utah, to the more uppity, air conditioned half of the Washington, Utah Conoco station. Somewhere during the move, she jacked the price on this south of the border ambrosia, pricing it just out of our budget. We only carry the memories of dressing up in our ponchos and ordering in Spanish hoping they would tell us what was in that special sauce.
  • Trader Joe's Mango Passion granola. This is a new one for us, but after 10 boxes in 3 weeks, we can solidly say this is #1 on the cereal list, edging out Cracklin' Oat Bran, and thus in the overall top 10. The Chapel Hill News even says it gives some a reason to get out of bed in the morning.
  • Hershey Pantry anything, but stuffed French toast comes to mind first. Every time you go they have a different cream cheese flavor of the day, so even though you order the same thing every time you go, it is actually not the same thing.
  • Home-made Australian scones with strawberry jam and unsweetened whipping cream. Unfortunately, Micki hasn't actually tasted this one. I have just talked about it so much she thinks she has. I was in Kuranda, Australia, a village in the rainforest above Cairns with my parents, my brother Tom and sister Lindsay. We got off a train and there near the station a cafe was serving these scones. Tragically, the best food I will ever eat was encountered that day, and it is 10 time zones away. I estimate the cost of actually getting another scone today at more than $10,000 US. That makes those scones not only the most delicious, but also the most expensive thing I have ever eaten.