Friday, June 22, 2012

Date Night {OUT}: Mother/Son, Father/Daughter

Last week Matt and I went out on dates with other people.  Don't worry, this is not scandalous.

You see, we have a beautiful little girl who just loves her daddy and whenever Matt and I are going on a date she likes to watch me get dolled up and ask questions about my level of excitement and the level of fanciness.  It's adorable.

So, Matt asked her out on a date.

We also have this son who, well, he's pretty oblivious to the whole dating scene and I'm pretty sure he's never noticed Matt and I getting dressed for a date BUT I think he's handsome and a real catch and I wanted to spend time with him.

So I asked him out on a date.

For their date, Matt planned everything.  He picked a fancy Italian restaurant and the evening's activities (going to a bookstore for a new book and out for ice cream).  Our daughter DID pick out his and hers matching outfits.  Aren't they sweet?

Ready for their "fancy" date

He's more of an active dater

Butterscotch ice cream. Mac-n-cheese.  The kid has a thing for orange foods.
Our date was a bit more adventurous.  It started at Arby's because my date wanted Mac-n-cheese (sigh).  Don't worry, I'll work on that before he asks out your kids.  We did eat in a park so at least the ambiance was good.  After dinner we played a round of mini-golf and then went out for ice cream. I think he had a good time.

This week, plan a special "date" night with your kids.  Memory makers, people.  Memory makers.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Things I Love: Baked Beans

Have you seen the SNL skit where the girl is all "I love me some baked beans?"  I'd post it here to show it to you but SNL isn't into skit sharing.  Who can blame them.

Anyhow, Matt quotes "I love me some baked beans" about 872 times a summer ... one for each time I eat a serving of baked beans.

I don't know what it is about baked beans but I really do love them.  I don't care if they are made at home or from a can (so long as they are vegetarian)--I love them.  I love them hot and cold.  I love to dip chicken in them.  I'd probably attempt a baked bean sandwich if my husband wouldn't give me that "maybe she needs to be committed" look.

Baked beans.  I love them.

If posting this made you think of the "Beans, beans the magical fruit" song, you owe me a comment.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

What I Think About: Pot Luck Ettiquette

This Friday we are hosting a potluck BBQ at our house in order to spend time with some friends visiting from out of town.

As a general rule I don't do potlucks.  I love to be a hostess and don't mind doing everything, from flatware and drinks to appetizers and the main dish.  I'm controlling that way.

But really, I just don't trust people to bring food.  I've been burned by one to many potlucks.

Let me explain.

It used to be that a potluck meant everyone brought a main course (in a pot.  I know, I just blew your mind) and a side to share (the side could be an appetizer, salad, or dessert).  So, you'd be at a potluck with casseroles and lasagnas galore.  It was easy to fill up on food--even if you aren't a casserole fan you just sucked it up for this one event.

But as people got busier, those casseroles turned into take out pizza and deli fried chicken. No shame in that.  At least it was still a main dish.

Somewhere around 10 years ago, however, a new trend started.  Everyone signed up to attend a potluck and then showed up with a bag of chips or a package of store bought cookies.  No main dish. Nothing in a pot (and probably no pot in those store bought brownies either).  Okay, generally one person still brings a main dish and the group divvies out the tatertot casserole one tatertot at a time.  For the most part, however, everyone eats a meager handful of chips, eats one cookie or brownie and goes home hungry.

The result: people like me who either 1. Do all the cooking or 2.  Tell attendees exactly what to bring.

Summer tends to equal potluck so I'd like to propose the following potluck rules.
  1. Bring your own chair/cups/plates/silverware/napkins. Oh, and a serving spoon for your food.
  2. Each family unit needs to bring one main dish (casseroles optional).  This main dish should feed at least 8 people.  Think: sandwich platter, pizza, chicken wings, lasagna, sloppy joes, pulled beef/pork, sushi platter etc.
  3. Each family unit needs to bring one side to share (in addition to the main dish).  The side can be fruit, veggies, a bag of chips, a package of cookies or brownies, sliced watermelon, etc.  It should be enough to feed at least 8 people.
  4. Unless otherwise stated, bring something to drink--especially if you want alcohol.
  5. Leave your pets at home (unless they were invited).
If each family unit followed these rules, everyone could get enough to eat and drink and enjoy all that food without the scent of dog poo.  Doesn't that sound nice?

What I think is potlucks are a great idea but unless people bring a main dish and a side, you might as well just call it "Chips for Lunch".

Did I miss any essential rules?


Thanks, Shell for letting me Pour My Heart Out on your blog.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Days of Play: Sharpie Tie Dye

Are you on Pinterest?

Okay, I just hacked a line from You've Got Mail. You know when Kathleen Kelly's bookstore employee girl ask employee guy "are on online?" Don't remember it.  I swear some days I feel like the only person in the world who has watched that movie over a million times. Sheesh, people. You're making me look bad.

 I'm on Pinterest (you can follow me here). Sometimes I feel like I need a Pintervention. But I don't really want one because I generally find some brilliant ideas I can try and share (or laugh about if I ruin).

Anyhow, under my PLAY WITH THIS board there is a tutorial for Sharpie tie dye. It looks cute, though I must admit I missed the Sharpie craze. $16 for markers that don't smell like fruit?  You've got to be kidding.  All this anti-Sharpieness aside, I decided to give this project a go.

I got this idea off of Art and Craft Tutorials but I'm pretty sure she didn't invent the idea.

What you will need:

  • a pre-washed white t-shirt
  • Sharpies in a variety of colors
  • small cups (we opted for Dixie cups)
  • rubber bands
  • rubbing alcohol (mine was 70%)
  • piece of cardboard 
  • old medicine dropper
What to do:

  1. Slide a piece of cardboard between your shirt from and back (so it doesn't bleed through to the back).
  2. Figure out your design.  Or, if you are like me and you are gonna go random or go home, just start putting little cups under the shirt and then put a rubber band around the top.
  3. Now, draw small designs in the middle of the cup.  SMALL.  Do not fill up the white space.  Just 10-15 little dots and designs (we tried peace signs, hearts, smiley faces, and suns).  ***WARNING*** In each area do NOT use complimentary colors.  When complimentary colors run together they equal brown.  Brown is not a fun tie dye color.  
  4. With your medicine dropper, slowly (and yes, I mean slowly.  Drip.  Drip.  Drip) drip 8-10 drops of rubbing alcohol into the center of each cup.  Watch the colors bleed out.  ***NOTICE*** if you do NOT want really defined edges, go ahead and put a bit of alcohol on the edges of the cup to help facilitate bleeding.
  5. Let dry.
  6. Remove cardboard.
  7. Throw in dryer for 20 minutes to "set" colors.
  8. Wear.
FAQ:
  • What are complimentary colors? Complimentary colors are across from one another on the color wheel. Red and green, orange and blue, purple and yellow.  Avoid mixing these.  I had great luck mixing greens/blues/yellows, yellows/oranges/pinks, pinks/purples/blues, etc.
  • Can you wash this shirt?  Yes.  I would never encourage you to make something you can't use/wear.  Wash, dry, wear.  It's all good.
  • Can I use other alcohol?  If by this you mean 90% rubbing alcohol, then yes.  If you mean "can I substitute vodka or tequila?" Then no.  Although this is easy enough to make you could probably drink and still come up with something amazing.
My daughter and I did this activity.  I made a shirt for her and she made one for a friend's birthday.  She is 6 and found it fascinating.  I'm 30ish and was too afraid to let the 3 year old try this craft.  If you want to try with your 3 year old, go ahead (but I'm not accountable if Sharpie gets everywhere).

Our supplies

One of our shirts.  I forgot photos of the other one.  

Monday, June 18, 2012

Music Monday: Dirty Heads

Dirty Heads.  I hear that name and it kind of makes me itch a little.  Or a lot.  Funny how linguistics can affect us physically, right?

Itch.  Itch.  Scratch.

Back to typing.

The Dirty Heads have an eclectic sound.  A tablespoon of reggae, a dash of hip hop, and a pinch of punk is their recipe.  And while you might be shocked (since I'm not a huge hip hop fan) that I'm featuring this band, you should know that this musical recipe just works.

I don't know how it works; I just know it does.  Kind of like chicken schwarma.  I mean, who would think marinating greasy chicken in cloves, oregano, yogurt, and lemon would be so amazing.  But it is.

Schwarma and reggae.  Apparently I shouldn't blog today.  Sorry. I'm spread way too thin.  Lucky for you, that feeling ties right into the first song.  Magical, huh?  I mean, it's almost like I planned that ...

Spread Too Thin

Like it? Were you thinking, "gosh, they have a Sublime sound?" Well, then, feast your ears on this candy! Lay Me Down (with Sublime)