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Archive for February – 2010 – Mommy of Many®
With the rainy, cold weather comes comfort foods. This dish is easy and goes great with anything from steaks to chili. Give it a try!
1 pkg Jiffy corn muffin mix
1 can cream-style corn
1 can whole-kernel corn, drained
1 cup sour cream
1 stick butter, softened
Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Mix well. Pour into a 2-quart casserole dish. Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 30 minutes or until top is golden brown.
I’m just back from the unhappy experience of being at the dentist. Now, don’t get me wrong-I’m very happy to be ABLE to go to the dentist. I know that I need to be grateful for dental coverage. But the appointment and the reason behind it were NOT happy events.
So, let’s go back about 3 years and I’ll tell my tale…
Pain! Lots of pain while chewing and drinking. Hot-ouch! Cold-ouch! Something must be wrong. I think I’ll ignore it. After-all, I DO have 2 sides to my mouth and only 1 of them is painful. Solution-simply use the other side…only! This chapter lasted about a year.
Pain! Too much pain! It’s time to call the dentist. I’ve been avoiding one side of my mouth for about a year and there really must be something that should be done. Right? So, I made the dreaded phone call (mind you, I take the kids to the dentist regularly. But for myself, there always seems to be a good excuse.) and scheduled an appointment. At the appointment I was severely scolded for having waited so long and informed that I was in need of a root canal.
The procedure was scheduled and carried out. It was a 2 appointment procedure. I was told that all went well. ~sigh of relief~
Now…let’s forget about my stupid teeth and get on with life! And THAT is JUST what I did.
Why oh why is there pain in the area of the tooth that had the root canal?! I MUST have something stuck. Better floss EXTRA well…again and again and again. And that is just what I did.
Over the next 4 months I would have that thought from time to time. I’d floss, brush, rinse and then forget about it until it bugged me again. 2 weeks ago my tooth decided to talk to me and tell me it was no longer going to allow me to ignore it. I spoke gently to it saying, “be well little tooth. You have had a root canal and are fine. You may look different from my other teeth, but you’re going to be ok. I will give you a break and I’ll (once again) chew on the other side of my mouth. Will that make you happy?” Little tooth quieted down and enjoyed the rest. But 4 days ago it yelled at me saying, “STOP ignoring me and patronizing me! I don’t want rest. I want attention!” Then the gum around the tooth started to swell. After 1 day of swelling and pain I called the dentist (on a Sunday). I explained everything and was put on antibiotics until I could come in for an appointment.
Appointment time! So…the dentist greeted me and got right to work. “Oh. Oh my. Let’s get an x-ray of this. My my…Oh Mrs. Lang, this is not good. Let me show you”.
My tooth has broken…in half and must be removed! Apparently that root canal was to be followed by a crown. This was an appointment I never made and frankly, forgot about. Now, here I am 2 years later facing oral surgery and the removal of a tooth that can not be saved. I’m more than a little freaked out!
Chapter 4 to come soon. I must stay on the antibiotics until the surgery, so you can bet it will be in a week or so.
It’s a Wednesday in Lent, which around this house, means meatless meals. I looked through the cupboards and decided on something that I’ve called Mexican Lasagna and have been making for about 14 years now. It’s a favorite and by request, I’m posting the recipe. (Don’t think I don’t know that Rachael Ray has her own version of Mexican Lasagna. I guess she heard about mine and decided to develop her own recipe. Fine! But hers isn’t meatless and wouldn’t work for us tonight anyway)
Mexican Lasagna…Mommy of Many Style
1 can black beans
1 can refried beans
1 can corn
1 can chopped tomatoes w/ garlic and onion
shredded cheese (I like to use sharp cheddar)
sour cream (optional)
drain black beans and dump into a large bowl. Add the can of refried beans (and unless you are Amelia Bedelia I’m going to assume you know to open the cans before placing the contents into the bowl). Drain the can of corn and add to the bowl. Add the can of tomatoes. Mix together.
Line a 9×13 dish with 3 of the tortillas. I tear one of them in half to cover each end of the bottom. Spread the bean mixture evenly over the tortillas. Top with the other 3 tortillas and sprinkle the cheese to cover.
Cover and bake at 350 for 35 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 10 minutes.
Slice and serve. I like to let the kids decide which *optional* items they want to top their portions with.
A couple of days ago I asked my boys what they were thinking about giving up or doing for Lent.
Tristan told me he was going to “try” to spend less time on the computer (I asked him what that meant, but his answer leads me to believe we have some talking to do).
Max, on the other hand, knew EXACTLY what he planned on doing…
Me-”Max, what are you giving up or doing for Lent?”
Max-”I’m going to practice almsgiving”
Me-*trying not to laugh too hard* “almsgiving? But you don’t make any money”.
Max-”I find a quarter…sometimes a dime…”
I had to walk away so that he didn’t see me laughing. This kid! Priceless!
This evening I lined up the 4 youngest kiddos to check teeth, ears and nails…basic, regular grooming. While clipping nails I was the unfortunate recipient of a flying nail clipping to the eye. Not fun! Having an eyelash stuck in your eye is NOTHING compared to a nail clipping. My eye is ok and on the upside, the kids are cleaned and clipped.
Pictured above are the items I found under my 7 yr old’s pillow when I was trying to tuck him into bed tonight.
*shaking my head*
I just don’t know how he thought he was going to be able to sleep like that
But on a GOOD note-THIS is the pitcher that I was directed to go buy this morning, in Maddi’s note. It’s a terra cotta pitcher from my favorite, Spanish restaurant-Costa Brava. I love it but I must admit that having it here sans the sangria that I’m used to seeing in it when I’m at the restaurant makes me wish for a trip to the store. Anyone want to come over for some sangria?
These days have been long, busy and full of adventure.
A day of working in the house became a day that neither my kids or I will ever forget.
It’s not often that there’s an entire day to work around this house, uninterrupted by kids’ sports or play dates, errands or unplanned outings. But the other day, that’s exactly what I had. I started doing laundry, load after load and bustling around, cleaning out cabinets and organizing shelves. After a couple of hours, I noticed that my kitchen window was fogging up. I immediately thought that the dryer hose must have come undone. I gave a quick peek over the back of the dryer and discovered that I was right. I turned the dryer off, unplugged it and grabbed the broom. Heck, if I was going behind the dryer, we were gonna get it clean! First I swept in front of and under the washer and dryer, got a good sized pile of lint, sand and socks, pulled the dryer out and hopped behind it. I picked up the dryer hose and noticed a collection of lint inside of it. I turned it over to shake it out and sure enough, plenty of lint and MOUSE DROPPINGS came tumbling out! I’m pretty sure I yelled and then just started babbling nonsense. But among the terror-filled nonsense were the words, “I don’t want to do this! I don’t want to do this! This is NOT good! THIS IS NOT GOOD!!!!!” Mariah came running into the laundry room, looked at my terror-stricken face and then peeked over to see what I was yelling…and crying about. She got a smug look on her face and just said, “ohhhhhh”.
Suddenly I realized that I was standing in a corner, with mouse droppings and the open hole to the back of the dryer that could be where a mouse or mice were lurking. Jumping! Quickly! to the top of the washer! I continued crying and trying to think. I yelled for Mariah to bring me the vacuum. I knew that I had to clean up the lint and droppings and reattach the hose. FREAKING OUT! Crying! Trying to be logical and knowing that I had NO CHOICE but to continue the job. I sat on top of the dryer until Mariah brought me the vacuum. I hopped in front of the washer and dryer and decided that I’d start by cleaning up the pile of lint, sand and socks I’d swept up. I’d get my head around the droppings and lint afterward. I turned on the vacuum and through wracking, freaked-out sobs, used the hose to begin the clean up. after a few seconds something blocked the end of the hose. SOMETHING BLOCKED THE END OF THE HOSE!!!!! It took a second for my brain to register what my eyes were seeing. Well, if I was sobbing and incoherent before, you can only imagine what was being shouted when I realized that a dead mouse was stuck to the end of the vacuum hose. Mariah says it was something like, “s#*t!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”, repeatedly. I knew that if I turned off the vacuum I’d have to sweep the mouse up, so I yelled (lots of yelling during this!) for her to bring the trash can from the kitchen. I then held the hose over the trash can and turned it off, letting the mouse fall into the can. Tristan was immediately summoned to remove the bag of trash.
I couldn’t go any further at this point. I was so upset and knew that I had no choice but to go back and finish the job. But I needed a minute of private freaking out before going back. I went to my room and became disgusted with the thought that my clothes had mouse dust on them. I quickly stripped out of the tainted clothing and put on another set of work clothes, made two frantic phone calls, pulled myself together as best I could and went back to the laundry room.
God bless Mariah!!!! She had vacuumed up all the lint and droppings from the back of the dryer. THANK YOU!!!!! That is, until I realized that we’d been using the BAG-LESS Vacuum. I swear I’ll deal with that soon. Swear! *Shaking and making a very unattractive face*.
Ok, so…the floor was clean and the mouse was gone. Now to reattach the hose. I, once again, became very upset at the thought of climbing back there and facing the hole to the dryer. I finally just went next door and asked our neighbor for assistance. Being a girl has it’s advantages! There is DEFINITELY a time and place to play dumb and I chose THAT moment. Good ol’ Mr. Mike came right over and took care of the dryer hose. The instant that his boots were inside the front door, the kiddos started telling him the tale of Mommy’s freak out and the mouse I had found. Luckily, it didn’t phase him one bit. He just laughed and said, “Yup, those critters like it in there”.
After 2 glasses of wine and cleaning the laundry room floor with Lysol wipes, I was able to breathe normally again.
Oh this kid! He is such a sweet lil charmer! We all adore him and his magnetic smile. But as the end of the line in a large family, this lil kiddo can surely pack a punch.
Tonight, he got angry at his 7 yr old brother and took the opportunity to kick him while he was on the floor. When I stood him in time out he started crying and said, “Don’t you know I’m allergic to time-outs?”
There are several topics I want to write on but I will be sitting with my first grader, overseeing the many, many, many pages of work that were hidden from not only me (under the bed), but from the teacher (crumpled in the desk) over the last few weeks. So…off to the dining table I go with an arm load of paper work for me and several sharpened pencils for him.
We were fortunate enough to have a clear schedule, again this evening. So, a “spread-out” dinner was in order. We set the table, laid the food out and all sat down. We passed the food around and helped make plates for the younger kids.
When Lex got his plate, he looked at his food with a sad face and said, “I really wish we had squash because every night that we don’t have squash, I’m really sad”.
I guess squash will be on the shopping list for the next “big” shopping trip.
The kids had a 1/2 day of school today and I had planned to run a couple of errands and then spend some Mommy and Me time with Max. But my plans were foiled. The office I needed to do business at was closed for a training seminar and the weather is too dreary to want to venture out with Max.
I took Max aside and explained that we would have to postpone our plans and that I have lots of work waiting for me at home, so I would be spending the afternoon trying to tackle some of it. He took it in stride and said, “That’s ok. I know why you have so much work to do. It’s because you’re Mommy of Many.”
I know that dinnertime is important and in this house we don’t always get to have a sit-down dinner. Many nights, I call the kids into the kitchen, make their plates, hand them to them and then they take them to the table to eat and are excused when they’re done. But last night, there was time in our schedule to have, what Gabi calls,”a spread-out dinner”. This means that everything is put into bowls or on plates and the table is set and waiting and we all sit together. I’m so glad we had that time! It meant listening to the kids chatter at me and at each other about their day and to be able to hear some of their ideas. Had we not been sitting down last night, I may never have known what Tristan wanted to be when he grows up…”rich!”. Or that my 3 youngest boys all think it would be a great idea when they grow up, to have homes for the elderly. Tristan’s thought was that there should be a nice place for older people to spend their golden years. Max felt that he should start a town and give all the housing away, for free, to it’s elderly residents. Luke-Xavier felt that he should have a “food house” where all the people come and he goes up on his roof (he made sure to specify that the roof would be flat) in his elevator and gets the food for the people who need it. Gabi chimed in that she would be a model. She says she’ll be a model most of the days, but on some days she’ll build houses-houses where everything is heart-shaped and they’ll be “love houses”. Tristan asked her, “so, they’re for people who are in love?”. She put him in his place by explaining that “love houses” are full of love and are for the old people so that they know we love them…Sweet girl!
We ended dinner with the question, from Gabi, of how the chicken that was being eaten was killed. I had to admit that I really don’t know how chickens are killed and sent to market. I was scolded and told that they are shot…shot, the bullet is then taken out of the them and the hole from the bullet is superglued together so that no one has to see it. Chicken…yum!
I hope we can find time for more “spread-out” dinners soon!