Archive | December, 2011

Fa, La, La – Ruff, Ruff, Ruff

8 Dec

I’m shocked it’s already Thursday afternoon.  I spent most of the week wandering in a migraine confused stupor.  It was the perfect time to volunteer for the Santa Sale in school.  Despite popping  Advil between the third graders and preschoolers, working the Santa Sale was fun.  You’d have to be second cousins to the Grinch not to enjoy helping six year-olds buy gifts for their mom, dad, grandma’s, and baby sister.

Spoiler Alert:  Everyone is getting slime.

It was a best seller.

I prepped my daughter the night before her class was scheduled to shop.  I had my eye on this sparkly pink key-chain that said mom, but she doesn’t take hints well.  She did however, insist that I wrap her presents, even though I saw what she got me.  She keeps secrets worse than I do, so now I’m wearing a lovely chain of Christmas bulbs around my neck.  It’s so cute, one of the other mom’s had to buy one for herself after I modeled mine.  We may be starting a trend.

Somehow, it must have been fog caused by my head exploding, I got roped into running the Santa Sale next year.

Fa, la, la, la, LA!

This morning I went shopping for my kids.  I have to say I love shopping.  We don’t really buy them toys during the year, so Christmas is always a fun time for me.  Instead of saying No, no, NO, I get to say Yes, yes, YES!  They don’t know I’m saying yes though.  It’s a surprise.  Shh-hh.

I’ve had an electronic dog in my closet for a week.  Every time I go to grab some clothes, I have a minor hearty-tack, because this dog starts barking at me like it’s going to tear my foot off.  I even wrapped the critter and still it barks.  And whines.  There’s nothing worse than a battery operated whiner.  I already know I’m never replacing the batteries in that toy.

You wanna hear a true story?

It will make you feel like a better parent after I tell it.

When my kids were babies, my husband and I got so fed up with the random noises one night, that we went around with a pair of pliers and clipped every last wire.  There wasn’t a battery left in the house after we were done, and buying new batteries would never again ‘fix’ the broken toys.

Isn’t that terrible.

Don’t you feel sorry for my kids?

If anyone saw us that night they would have called the men in little white jackets.

For sure!

Anyway, just because I’m writing drivel on the Fringe doesn’t mean there’s not a lot going on in blogland.

Edie has some amazing Christmas food linkies going on.

Flower Patch Farmgirl wrote a great post on the real meaning of Christmas.

Lisa Leonard wears the cutest clothes ever.  Seriously, I would love to shop in her closet.  I would wear every single outfit she’s ever featured on WIWW.

What else?  Do you have any links to share?


Mrs. Claus’s Black-Eyed Peas

4 Dec

I’m a regular Mrs. Claus this Christmas and it has nothing to do with the size of my jolly old belly.  I’m shopping early.  It’s highly unusual, but I’m having so much fun finding gifts I know my friends and family will love.  I adore shopping for other people.  There’s something freeing when you’re out spending money on others.

FringeMan has been shopping in the woods for four-legged creatures.

If I go to the store to buy myself something, even if I really need it, I have the tendency to talk myself out of making the purchase.  I’m an expert at shopping and not buying.  FringeMan makes fun of me for it; however, I can spend money like it’s growing on the potted tree on my front porch if I know it’s for someone else.  I feel none of the post traumatic broke syndrome if the purchase is for someone other than myself.  I think that’s a psychological flaw, but let’s not take the time to analyze me too much.  We’re friends here – you love me despite my quirks.

I even found the perfect gifts for FringeMan.  I just haven’t bought it yet.  He’ll be surprised though.  I know it!

Help me! I live with this man.

I’m in such a festive mood that I volunteered for the Santa sale in the elementary school.  Tomorrow you’ll find me helping kids pick out the perfect plastic bracelet for their mother.  It should be a hoot.  And I don’t often use the word “hoot”.

I bought myself a little something though.  Temptation is a terrible thing.  I can resist a lot, but when a TaB cup comes calling, I buckle under the pressure and take a bite of the apple.

Check these beauties out!

I just wish I bought another pack so I could have a set of eight.  Maybe on my next Wal-Mart trip.

I’m sure you’re jealous of my vintage inspired Fanta glass, but don’t blame me for tempting you if you blow the $10 on a set.

Now, since I’m in my kitchen making googly eyes at my glassware, I thought I’d share a recipe.  But, it has a story with it. This summer, my husband preached at this church about an hour from our house, and the pastor of that church invited us back to his home for dinner.  No one EVER does that, so we were surprised and honored, but mostly happy I didn’t have to cook.  This super-sweet woman made chicken, potatoes, and all kinds of yummy comfort foods, but the star of the meal was a crock of black-eyed peas.  I never had them before and I only took some to be polite.  Who knew I’d love them?  I went black for seconds on the little black-eyed wonders.

So I had to learn how to cook them, only I can’t cook them Southern style, because I’m a darn Yankee.  It’s true.  Blame my mother.

FringeMan says that I’ve taken a country food and made it taste Mediterranean.  I’m not sure about that, but it’s got a certain overseas flare.  I guess.

Here’s the recipe.  Try them and decide for yourself.

Almost Mediterranean Black-Eyed Peas:

1 bag dried black-eyed peas

1 large can chicken broth

1 onion, chopped

5 (or s0) minced cloves of garlic

salt and pepper to taste

a healthy sprinkling of parsley

1/2 stick butter (Because butter makes everything better.  Don’t tell your cardiologist I said that.)

ham (leftover from a roast or a ham steak ) chunked

Soak the beans overnight, drain, and take out all the bad ones.  Throw everything into the crock-pot and cook for 8-10 hours on low.

It’s easy and even my son likes it.  You remember Mikey?

I’ve got Johnny.  He’s the opposite of Mikey.

Did you ever cook black-eyed peas?

Do you love my glasses more than that chocolate brownie you snuck last night?  Oh, wait.  That was me with brownie.  Never mind!

Coffee Trails & Other Percolations

2 Dec

This is the kind of morning that drips a coffee trail behind me.

christmas tree

I woke up and went right to the Christmas tree and plugged it in.  Everyone knows a lit tree is the perfect start to a day, especially after a night when I didn’t sleep very well.   Or maybe I did.  Maybe it was just a dream that I didn’t sleep very well.  I’ve never thought of that, but now I am.

Hang on, I need to refill that coffee cup.

Ok, I’m back.  I decided it wasn’t a dream.  It was real life.  I’m sure as I’m sure Santa will bring me all the things I’ve *hearted* on Etsy.

So tell me, do you guys have it all together in the Christmas shopping department?  Do you start picking out perfect gifts in July and announce in your facebook status update that you are officially ‘Finished Christmas Shopping – WooHoo” by Halloween?

I’m not really like that.  I’m kinda/sorta the girl who wanders through the mall on Christmas Eve knowing she has about thirty-two minutes to find perfect, well thought, loving, preferably handmade presents.

I work well under pressure.

I don’t wrap well.

Once I had a job that forced me to (very occasionally) gift-wrap an item for a customer.  These people paid for gift-wrapping and got me.  I felt so terrible for them, but I won’t bore you with my job-related failures right now; however, speaking of jobs…

Recently my library was looking for a librarian, the person to oversee the entire library, work with the board of directors, and run things.  It was a full-time job and I was homeschooling my kids.  I couldn’t apply for it, but I asked if they had any part-time positions, because I could definitely do one of those.  I would love working around books for about fours hours, five days a week.  They said they regretted to tell there were no part-time positions available, but assured me if anyone died or retired, they would give me a call.  No one has died or retired.

For the record, I do not wish death or even retirement on any of the nice library people.

The other evening while I was killing time at the library with my kids, a couple came in and asked me a question.  Then they said, “You are the librarian, aren’t you?”

What can I say?

“My husband thinks I look like one, but no.  Nobody has died or retired; however, I know exactly where the book is that you’re looking for.”

I know what you’re thinking.  I should drink more coffee before I sit down to blog.  It’s a good idea.  I think I’ll sit on the couch with my coffee and look at Christmas lights. Only I can’t sit on the couch, because I don’t want any spills.  It’s the kind of morning that drips a coffee trail behind me.

How much Christmas shopping have you done?

0% for me, but you already knew that.

Happy Friday!

A Good Bottle of Fringe Vanilla Will Change Your Life

1 Dec

A good bottle of Fringe Vanilla will change your life.

Or something like that.

I have a few bottles of 100% pure vanilla homemade extract available for sale in my Etsy shop.

Everybody’s using it.

You know you want to pour some in your coffee, make a batch of snickerdoodles, and whip up some fresh cream.  Buy yours today.  I don’t have many left.

Love and Vanilla to you all!



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