Monday, October 27, 2008

Mother of all cabbages

This is the mother of all cabbages. It might not look like it from the top, so I got a side view, and put it in front of the Brita filter to give you a point of reference...

This eleven pound monster was a gift. I quartered it and SMOOSHED each quarter into a gallon size ziploc bag. Then I made corned beef and cabbage, cabbage soup, cole slaw, more corned beef, more soup, more cole slaw...and I still had 1/2 of it left!

So I left the rest at my mom's house...

Saturday, October 25, 2008


I like Facebook. It's a social network that I understand. I even like the new version (why are you so hesitant to change?). What I've decided that I don't like is "make-your-own-quiz".

I really like taking the quizzes. It's fun to find out that I'm most like Sally (Charlie Brown's sister), or Jane Austen's Catherine Morland, or, surprisingly, Jasmine (I'm not Belle, the book-loving heroine?). Those are fun :) It gives me a few minutes of brainless activity.

What I'm not a huge fan of, however, is that anyone can make a quiz, and it's hard to know which quiz was written by some looney-bin at 3am after he got home from the bar and thought, "I can make a quiz!"

I just took the quiz, "What were you born to do?" That's a pretty deep question. There are millions of possiblitities! The quiz involved five three-answer multiple choice questions.

Really? That's it?? You can decide if I should be a teacher, actor, roofer, pharmacist, business owener, musician, garbage man, landscaper, doctor, secretary, or waitress after five questions?? Wow!

I'm a writer. My sister is a high school teacher. We both took the quiz. It said we should both be a doctor/nurse. Why? Because we care about people.

Are you SERIOUS!?!

First of all, the differences between doctors and nurses are HUGE! (My husband has been in and out of hospitals for the past two years - trust me, I know!!). What makes someone a good nurse will NOT make them a good doctor, so lumping them into the same category, I'm sorry, seems a bit premature, if not ignorant.

Secondly - shouldn't the main reason for joining the medical profession include something like - can you complete eight years of higher education? I'm not trying to be mean here, but my Aunt Linda would score the same on the quiz that I did. She LOVES people and wants to make sure everyone is taken care of. She remembers everyone she's ever met and will always ask how they're doing. She's also mentally handicapped and lives at the 2nd grade level.

I'm sure I could come up with a third - fourth - then final reason to criticize this quiz, but I don't feel like it. I don't really want to waste any more time ranting about five multiple choice questions.

I'm sure I'll keep taking quizzes, and I'm sure I'll continue to be disappointed. I hope I won't.

In the meantime, I'm going to try to come up with my own...I'll let you know when its posted.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

And you thought the tail light was impressive...

Tonight I assembled a GARAGE!!

Okay, fine...I got the roof assembled by myself, but by then Matt was home from work, so we did it together. Still, I'm pretty impressed. Putting together your Wal-Mart book shelf is one thing...a 1,700 cubic foot garage is something complete different.

Now I'm going to lay down and pray that I can move in the morning...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Date Night

Saturday night Matt took me out on the town. We were celebrating the fact that someone showed interest in my book query (see for updates on my novel and other writing).

We pretty much take advantage of any opportunity to celebrate...and have someone else cook for us. Saturday was the perfect night to head out. We had both worked hard that morning/afternoon, so some time to ourselves was well deserved.

Sometimes one of our date nights is nothing more than pizza and a movie (and I am TOTALLY okay with that!), but I wanted to get dressed up. I have this great black dress that I bought for a wedding and have never worn it (sad story - couldn't make the wedding - don't make me cry). Matt also has a tailored Ralph Lauren suit that was BEGGING to get out of the bag. Saturday was the night.

Now, Traverse City isn't that big. And finding someplace to go where we can be all dressed up and still afford it doesn't usually happen. Besides, we go to bed at 9:00 pm. All of the formal stuff doesn't even start until then. That didn't discourage me, though. We got dressed up and headed out.

We went to the casino. My sisters live in Vegas and they can't walk into a grocery store without running into a slot machine. It's not that bad here. We're about three miles away from the nearest casino, and they just opened a few months ago. Very clean, very trendy (in ten years it'll be hideous, but it works for now). It was an experience.

As soon as we walked in the door an employee greeted us. She gave us the run down on the hot spots in the casino, including the restaurants. We took one step away and another employee greeted us. All of the dealers and waitresses smiled as we walked by (note to self: Matt is not allowed in public in his suit without his wedding ring and a family member - too many women were giving him the eye). We definitely got some nice treatment.

But it wasn't hard to understand why. The rest of the patrons fell into one of three categories:

1 - 45% retired
2- 40% jeans & t-shirts, Joe Blow
3 - 5% birthday/bachelor(ette) parties

Sure, Matt & I are just Joe Blows, but we didn't look like it :) I think they figured us out, however, when we sat down at the nickle slots. We quit early and walked away $9.50 richer.

While we both wanted to eat at the fancy-pants restaurant in the casino, I just couldn't do it. Not when we could drive down the road and have a great meal for the price of one entree at the casino. (It made me wonder - why don't they have the great meal-deals my sibs can get in Vegas?? I digress...)

Anyway, we ate Mediterranean and had a great meal. Again, I had to keep a protective arm around my husband, but I think the ladies got the point. (Unfortunately, I think the busser did to, and he's a kid that I sub for...that's always awkward).

While everything seemed perfect, our favorite moment came after dinner.

We drove to the grocery store to pick up a couple of items (store brand cereal on sale for 99 cents a box, limit 3. I had picked up 3 earlier in the week - Matt wanted more. I talked him down to 9 boxes. His response? "Twelve would be better, but nine will work"). As we were wandering the store we stepped back to the pop can return area...and gasped.

They did it! They finally did it! Gone are the separate 'can-plastic-glass' machines - now our store has the high-end, easy to use 'can AND plastic' machines...YES!!! No more sorting returnables. No more running errands with cans in the back seat so you can stop at another store. Now we don't have to look any further than three blocks away. WOO HOO!!

I know...we're weird. Looked great, had great food - but it's all about the recycle machines. It was a good night.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Who needs a man?!

When I was single I couldn't wait to get married so my husband could help with the "man" things: garbage, home repairs, car stuff. Now that I'm married and 30, I see so many young, single women who couldn't find their butts with both hands and a map, much less figure out how to change a fuse in a car. That has inspired me to figure out even more things by myself.

Today I changed my tail light. Not just the light bulb, but the actual, whole light!

A couple of months ago I was rear-ended and my tail light was busted. I ordered one, then realized I ordered the WRONG one, so I canceled it and started the hunt for a new light. It arrived yesterday and I was anxious to install it (I drove with the receipt in my glove box, just in case I got pulled over I could prove that I bought a replacement).

I asked my husband if he had ever changed a tail light. He said yes, you just pull back the carpet and see what's underneath. So I did just that. Three nuts and one plug later, my old light was off, my new light is in, and I'm off! I even double checked to make sure it was working.

So there you have - I can change a tail light, if you need me to. (And I do know where my fuse box is located, thank you).

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Bleach in a Spray Bottle

My husband is actually capable of cleaning! It's a theory I've had for years now, but I wan't able to prove it. Thanks to Clorox, however, I've finally seen it.

Did you know you can get Clorox bleach in a spray bottle?? Okay, yeah - everybody knows that. Everybody, that is, but my husband. For some reason he had never seen it until I was using it a week or so ago. Since then, I can't keep it away from him!

He cleans out his "lunch box" (an Igloo cooler) regularly. He wipes down the counters and cleans out the microwave. He uses it to kill spiders and clear their webs out of corners (I have a massive spider problem at my house - arachnophobes, you've been warned). I'm pretty sure he'd use it for toothpaste if I'd let him. It looks like I might even get him to clean the shower this week!

So, thank you Clorox. Thank you for inspiring my husband. I have a more sanitary house because of you.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

I hate politics...

Please visit

I could re-write what my sister wrote, but why waste the time?