Sunday, September 30, 2007

Sunday


Ella spent the morning here. Emily said when she stopped in front of our house, Ella said, "Nana, blankie, hold." So you can see what my role is in her life! We went to Target and looked at Halloween stuff. I wanted to buy her a pumpkin candy bag...it was soft and happy looking but she didn't like it and said it was scary. We read a lot of books, went out for breakfast, and I took her home at noon for a nap.

I forgot this part. At some point in the morning, I said, "Oh, I see." Ella thought that was hilarious and she laughed and laughed. Threw her head back and belly-laughed. I would say it again, then she would repeat it...eyes wide open and very animated...sometimes with the emphasis on different words....Oh, I see. Ooooooh, I see. Such a hoot.

Regis and Reggie hung my pot rack today. It was a little frightening, I must say. There were already two extraneous holes in the ceiling in the general vicinity of where the stud should have been, when they headed up to the attic. All of a sudden there is a hole in the ceiling NOT EVEN CLOSE to where the kitchen is. What the hell???? This was making me very nervous, but I just went to bed and told Tiffany to call 911 if the ceiling fell. When I got up from my nap, it was all done and there were only the three extra holes. As you can see, now my pans look like shit and I think I need new pans. I guess that was easy to predict.

We had thunderstorms last night and I thought Bert had been reincarnated. Kramer was up on my pillow panting his hot doggy breath in my ear. There were a couple claps of thunder that almost threw us off the bed. More rain coming tonight so I think I'll close the window.

October 1st already tomorrow. How did that happen?

Regis & Teresa Celebrity Look Alikes


I found this cool website that does face recognition then makes a collage of your celebrity look alikes. What a hoot. Look at mine below...all the hot women then William Powell. William Powell?

Friday, September 28, 2007

Wild Turkey

Years ago I was attacked by a wild turkey and not of the alcohol variety either as some of you surmised. It was an actual attack by a wild turkey such as the one in the picture and I had actual turkey footprint-shaped bruises on the backs of my legs to prove it. I have endured ridicule for the story but here is another aggressive wild turkey tale in the Tribune today. Finally, vindication. Check it out here.

Regis and I went to Whiskey River for dinner. We were just whupped from the week and decided to splurge so we had prime rib, walleye, a bottle of wine, and cheesecake for dessert. We spent a leisurely two hours watching the woodchuck at the bird feeder and the variety of folks who hang out there. I told Regis if he ever starts riding a motorcycle (unlikely) he shouldn't let me wear those leather chaps because they make your ass look huge.

The phone guy came to fix out school phone today and he didn't buy the lightning story. He said if we had a bolt strong enough to knock the phone off the wall, it would have done more damage like left burn marks. Ah well, he thinks he knows a lot about phones I guess. He said it was coincidence that the phone was on the floor after the storm. I said my version makes a better story.


I don't know what the reason is but there has been a dearth of blog postings lately. Even the goat blog entries have been sparse although I do know that Betsy has been on the front page of the Tacoma News Tribune. Is the harvest moon causing paralysis of the fingers? C'mon. Get spellbound by your imperfect life and share the details. I'm addicted. I need to know.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Lightning blew the phone right off the wall

We had that wicked bad storm Monday night remember. See Tuesday's post if you don't...then call your doctor about your memory deficit. Tuesday morning when Joanne went to school, the phone receiver in the work room was on the floor and the little piece that holds it in place was broken off. We didn't think much of it until today when all kinds of other weird things started happening with the phone: constant ringing with nobody there, hearing conversations through the phone that weren't being held on a phone, people who said they couldn't get through, flashing lights. As I was describing these things to Tom, the building and grounds guy, all of a sudden it dawned on me, "Hey! This is more than a broken piece of phone!" I think the lightning blew that phone right off the holder. It all makes sense. When the phone repair guy called to hear details of the problems we're having he said, "Man, that's serious."

We tried to watch Oliver Stone's Nixon last night. God, I can't imagine anybody watched that movie in a theater because for one thing it's 3 and 1/2 hours long. Regis and I both wandered away after about two hours which is an indication of something. Roger Ebert gave it a good review and there were some entertaining parts. Anthony Hopkins is compelling to watch and some of the other characters, too, but there is way too much historic film footage and way too many flashbacks. (It was a memory test, let me tell you...trying to remember all those screwy characters from the Nixon White House.) We might finish it tonight but we're going to skip to about 1973. Stone makes Nixon seem like one crazy ass dude. No wonder he had to resign.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Our hobby is Kaiser rolls

Regis decided last night that he missed the good rolls from Philadelphia. Actually he decided that Saturday when we were at HyVee looking for a nice hard roll. Everything you buy in the grocery store is made from the same dough...kaiser rolls, bagels, buns, bread. I'm sure they order the dough in from China, too. He found a recipe for Kaiser rolls and we made them tonight. They have seven minutes to go and they smell and look wonderful.

The top picture is the buns before they went in the oven. The next
one...ta da...is the buns when they came out of the oven.

We had a storm last night about 5 that was so bad, honest to God, we couldn't see the house across the street. It was a white-out from rain. Regis opened the door to take a photo and the deluge knocked him back. There must have been some straight line winds because there were trees down in the Minnesota Square neighborhood this morning. The robotic voice on the weather radio said that the wind speed was 67 mph in Ka-so-ta. Holy shit.
This is what the storm looked like and not at it's peak either. Like a blurry Monet painting.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

The daily cute

Ella was here all day today. She was mostly happy with the plan but didn't want me out of her sight for a minute and consequently hung on my leg as I tried to move around the house. I know somehow I managed when my kids were small but it must have been tricky.

We took a nap in the big bed and before she fell asleep, she rattled off a long story that included the names of everyone she knows. I wish I could have understood the rest of it because she waved her
arms and legs as she told it...it must have been exciting.

She is awfully busy exploring everything. She discovered the door bell and must have climbed the steps to ring it a hundred times. I try to be behind her every second but she still manages to pick up things a baby shouldn't have...a cheese grater, a bottle of pills, a screw driver. Holy shit. There's a reason why young people have babies.

We made chicken wings on the grill (after Ella went home) using a mojo marinade and apple wood chips. Mojo marinade is roughly: 1/2 cup orange juice. 2 T lime juice, 2 T olive oil, minced garlic, cumin, Tabasco, salt and pepper. Most directions we've read say to cook them for 15 minutes but we like them better cooked for 30 over indirect heat. I cut up a big apple from the coop and we wrapped it in foil with some cinnamon and sugar and cooked it for 6 minutes. I had some caramel sauce in the refrigerator and we drizzled that over the apples. It was delicious.

Jill commented on my last post that she enlarged the picture and could see the beer. I just want to say, in my own defense, that the yogurt was also quite visible. And it was pumpkin beer which has some nutritional value as she pointed out.

In this last picture, Ella is looking at the moss roses. Regis wanted her to sniff them so instead of leaning over to smell them, she grabbed them by their little necks and jerked them out of the soil. You never know what a baby will think when you give a direction.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

New refrigerator, ribs on the grill


This is my new refrigerator. Last night, I got all the food out of the coolers where it had been languishing for a day and got it into the new Amana refrigerator. Yahoo. It's nice to have the kitchen back to it's semi-organized state. Tiffany commented snidely that it's more room to keep expired food. Harrumph.

Regis and I got up early this morning and went to Menards on a mission for two things: a utensil to clean leaves out of gutters and a rack to hang from the ceiling for pots and pans. Success on both counts. Then we went to Perkins for breakfast and to HyVee to restock the larder. We both noticed that the help in both places is a lot friendlier and helpful early in the morning.

We bought a big rack of ribs because we've been wanting to try making them on the grill. We read up a little this afternoon (Grilling for Dumbies) and think we found the right process: a nice dry rub, basting with Jim Beam bourbon and water, and barbecue sauce for the last twenty minutes. The charcoal was complicated because it had to be replenished over the two hours of cooking time and we used mesquite wood chips that had to be soaked and added from time to time, too. The ribs were tender and delicious and I think we're spoiled. I wanted Regis to take a picture of them but we got distracted and ate them before we thought of it again.

I worked in the garden for a while today, too. We're getting rid of all those sunflowers (oh sure. they come up everywhere and forever. like white daisies there is no getting rid of them.) that take over and end up looking like hell by the end of July. One thing I like about them is when the goldfinches sit on them and ride the flower to the ground as the stem bends. It's like a carnival ride for birds. I saw a hummingbird today. He better get on his way wherever they go. Also saw a tiger swallowtail butterfly whose back end was pretty chewed up. He must have narrowly escaped being eaten by a bird.

Ella is coming over tomorrow while her daddy finishes painting the garage. She's always entertaining. Regis asked her today if she wanted to come to Nana's house tomorrow and she said, "Yeaaaaahhhh..." What a girl.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Talk Like a Pirate

Today is Talk Like a Pirate Day. Sorry it's so late and you don't get much of a chance to say arrrrghghgh or shiver me timbers or ahoy matey. I was going to copy the top ten TLAPD pick-up lines, but they're a little bawdy so you better just hit the link yourself, matey.








Last spring I must have been annoyed by all my ratty winter clothes because when the epileptics came around, I think they went out the door...my clothes not the epileptics...in a big black garbage bag. Which leaves me pretty much bereft this fall. I was tired of trying to make choices so I thought I would just go to Sears and buy five pair of black pants and be done with it. Sometimes I envy men...pants, shirt, shoes...interchangeable. Everyone I told this to laughed at me. So tonight I came home, had a glass of pinot noir and ordered a bunch of stuff from Lotus in the Moonlight...flowy weird batik things in wild colors. Yeah, that's more my style.

I think we're ready for the new refrigerator. Anybody who thinks this is a simple matter of one going out the front door and the other coming in the back door should think again. It's been a major disruption. I haven't bought groceries for two weeks because I didn't want to deal with the transfer. We've been eating difficult-to-identify stuff out of the freezer...tonight we got lucky and had pizza that we cooked on the grill a few weeks ago.

We have fruit flies in our house...but no fruit which makes me nervous. What the hell is decaying in here that would bring fruit flies? They love my wine and I have to keep a paper towel over the top of the glass so they don't drown in it. Not like I waste the wine...I just fish the fly out with my finger and go on with my business. Now there's some high class stuff.

I talked about my sleeping problems today at a meeting and half the women there said, "Call me when you're up at 2 a.m. I'm up watching HGTV or Oprah." Ha. They also said not to panic...it will pass.

Tomorrow is Thursday. The next best day to Friday.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Halfway to St. Patrick's Day

Regis and I are the world's worst painters. We're too random for a job that requires some level of meticulousness. Last night, in preparation for the new refrigerator, we decided to paint the wall behind the appliances. I had yellow paint and I'm ashamed to say that is the main reason we chose yellow. It's a little garish but what the hell. Halfway through we had to go to Patrick's for a half-price patty melt, half-price draft beer, and a bowl of free Ruben soup in honor of...Halfway to St. Patrick's Day!

Today I went to the loveliest funeral service I have ever attended for the 93-year old mother of my friend Ann. Nola Fern Kelley. It was like a 40 minute poem...beautiful old hymns, Bible passages that sounded like they were written for Nola, and a eulogy that made you weep. It was a proper send-off for a lady who lived in Garden City for 90 years.

I'm trying to put the house back together after a month of busy weekends. It's like an archaeological dig. The bottom layer is wedding supplies...packages of paper plates, thank you notes, and a bag containing bug spray. Then there's a layer from Labor Day weekend and the big cook-out. Then a layer from Rock Bend. I would really like to know how tidy people do it.

Speaking of that. I'm taking a survey. How many people pull their refrigerator out and clean under there on a regular basis? Is that something most people know to do? Or is that something anal retentives know about and the rest of us somehow survive without doing...for ten years or so? Let me know...

Sunday, September 16, 2007

I'm seeing amoebas

When I was in college, my friend Mike hated Sunday night and called the ill feelings related to it the Sunday psychosis. He said he was seeing amoebas. That's how I feel tonight. I'm seeing amoebas.

We had a major demolition project here today trying to make room for the new refrigerator. It involved moving the old one out and exposing ten years of dirt and dog fur embedded in black oily smut. Ella sat on a stool watching me clean it up and kept saying, "Eeeeuuuw, gross, Nana." I told her not to tell anybody. She's so cute and generally easy to take care of, but you have to behind her every minute or she'll come carrying the garden shears or a big glass jar or some other evil thing that should not be in the hands of a baby. This after her lunch of potato chips and Oreos. Bad Nana.

We finally went into the living room and took the lid off the toy box. She spotted her books and said, "Tickle Tickle and Say Goodnight!" We read them every time she's here but I didn't think she'd remember the titles. Then she said, "Bumpity bumpity hold on tight" which is a line from Say Goodnight. I couldn't believe it. These were Tiffany and Peter's favorite books when they were that age so it's touching that she likes them, too.

We went out to the garden to fill the birdfeeders. She sat on the little bench with her blanket while I worked then we picked some herbs. I picked the springs of thyme Regis needed for the stew and she came in with a fistful of basil and a few red flowers.

A book to recommend: Mountains Beyond Mountains by Tracy Kidder. It's the community read book for this fall and the author is coming to Gustavus the end of the month. The book is about Paul Farmer, a doctor who works in Haiti. It's also about how poverty and living conditions affect the health of people so you really can't try to cure diseases without trying to improve the lives of the people who have them. It was a very good book.

Well, here comes Monday.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Whine and cheese Friday

Regis is making Ruben sandwiches for us while I finish the last bottle of summer wine, a white Barefoot Cellars sauvignon blanc that tastes good when it's 90 degrees but not so good when it's 40. We switch to darker beer and redder wine when fall comes.

I made it back safely from the conference, having time to ruminate on the many irritations of hanging out with 800 people for 2 days. This is not the same blog post you will read on the Special Education blog that I keep for the district, by the way. A few of my observations:
  • Some people can't sit next to another human being without talking. Two women behind me this morning processed everything the speaker said in a loud stage whisper. They missed half of what the speaker said, so the other person constantly said, "What'd he say?" I sit in the front because I'm easily distracted and I couldn't figure out a polite way to tell them to shut the hell up.
  • Even presenters with PhDs can be random and irritating. I had to leave the 8-12 session because the presenter kept backtracking and segue-ing. I was gnashing my teeth.
  • When they have this many heavy hitters at a conference of this size, somebody should tell the break-out presenters not to present AGAIN the basic information that you already learned.
Enough carping. All in all, it was fascinating. One funny story. I walked into the 10:30 session this morning and the presenter said, "Hey, aren't you the woman who was lost downtown yesterday?" Yeah. That's me.

This is a picture of Bob Dylan in his early days. I love his hair and wish I could achieve that lofty curly hair look with the sullen poetic pout.

Bob has a new CD coming out in a month (I call him by his first name because I saw his concert in Mankato ten years ago.) so I just pre-ordered it. I had to bribe Regis with a bag of M&Ms not to do that voice that he thinks is Bob Dylan. He makes fun of me for liking Bob and I make fun of him for feeling nostalgic about You Can't Get to Heaven on the Frankford El.


Thursday, September 13, 2007

That pizza guy just got out of prison

First I have to mention my paranoia about mentioning, in a disparaging way, the names of restaurants, people, bars, etc. in my blog. Now, I tell the story about the pizza place I visited to night in the town where most of you know I am. I was hungry for pizza so I looked this place up on the internet and it looked a little high-class in the pictures and they didn't serve wine...just tap beer...but I took a wander around the block looking for something else and there it was, not looking so high-class after all. I went in and my god it looks like something out of a 1960 mafia movie. Red lamps, dark beat up paneling, red oil cloth table covers. And I swear the guys cooking pizza are either on work release or just got out of the pen. The pizza was good but the antipasta relish plate was like something you would expect to be constructed by a Norwegian...or a couple guys just out of prison. Now back to the paranoia. Let's say this place is owned by the mafia. They have a guy who checks google every few days to see if anybody has said anything negative about his establishment. Boom. Up pops my blog. I'm not taking any chances.

This town is not that complicated, streets running mostly north and south and parallel to each other and being named 1st Street SW and such. So far, I got lost coming into town, I got lost in the skyway on my way to the conference, and I got lost walking home. I asked a fellow on the street if he knew where the Hilton was and he pointed right up at the side of the building we were standing about half a block from and there it was: Hilton Garden Inn. Whoops.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Feels like fall out there

This morning when I left for work, I was comfortable in a dress and sandals. By about 10 o'clock the temp had fallen to 55 with a slight wind chill from the 25 mph breeze. Uff da. I had to close the window and put on a sweater. A week ago, it was 95 degrees. A little less abrupt change would be nice.

It's the middle of the third week of school and I finally have time to look around and see how messed up things have gotten at home. My system of doing chores once a week has gone completely to hell. There is crap everywhere and I can barely keep up with the dishes. Today we forgot to take the trash down so we have to try and squeeze another week's worth of garbage into the dumpster. Whine, whine, whine.

If you've been following the saga of Peter, he surprised us again last week by calling to say he would like to move to Canby to live with his grandma and go to the community college there. Long pause. My rebellious and mono-syllabic son wants to live with his grandma in a town of 2000 people that doesn't have a video store. He says he can't make a decent living at Subway and he thinks Grandma needs some company. (He doesn't know how often Grandma is gone!) He made so much sense and had been so thoughtful about the whole idea that I was nearly moved to tears. What a sweet boy.

Tiffany has found a job she enjoys for now, she's making some money in tips (fifty bucks some night) and she's looking for a car. Things are looking up for her, too. I'm not sure some days how she feels about it, but I love having her around. She's funny, sweet, and she likes my cooking.

Now if one of our kids would just marry a dentist so we could retire and live in their lower level, things would be great. Ha!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Birdbath

This is the birdbath we bought at the festival today. Regis put a CD down in the corner so you can get an impression of the size of it. It was made using a giant rhubarb leaf as a mold. It's just a beautiful thing and I can't wait to put it in the garden next spring. She says she leaves them out over the winter but I'd be sad if it cracked.

Tiffany is dog sitting for Gonzo and Fletcher tonight. Betty and Tom went out of town and hired her to stay at their house and take care of their dogs. A pretty good gig, I'd say. Lay around their house, watch tv, let the dogs in and out, and eat snacks. That's a job I'd like.

Well, it's back to the cold, cruel world of work tomorrow. Pitiful, just pitiful.


Book recommendations:
Empress of Weehawken by Irene Dische
The Lost Diary of Don Juan: An Account of the True Arts of Passion and the Perilous Adventure of Love by Douglas Carlton Abrams

Peace dude

We told the kids, Bob, Reg, Amber, John, and Glen, to stop over and see us at the park yesterday. We thought they'd enjoy the Rock Bend festival. They left Ella with us for a while and walked around to peruse the booths and food stands. When they came back, Reg said, "You didn't tell me this was an old hippie convention!" So here we are, Regis and me in our tie-dye....peace dude. (Don't be fooled. This isn't really us...I would never curl my bangs like that and Regis would always wear pants in public.) True confession: Regis had a peace sign on his t-shirt and I was wearing tie-dye.

Old hippe convention or not, we had a good time. It's a tough venue if you really want to listen to music, though. There are way too many distractions: people moving around, talking, eating. I think you could have Lawrence Welk up there and nobody would know the difference. We never make it to the end especially when it's cold like it was yesterday.

Funny, we think 70 degrees is warm but when you sit outside all day in it, it chills you to the bone. We were home in bed by 9 and missed Rockin' Daddy and the Roughcuts with Mojo Buford.

You see every kind of dress at a thing like this. Being in the early stages of decrepitude, we were warmly clothed with long pants and sweat shirts and jackets. One guy who was probably buff and studly in his day came walking in with no shirt on... and here comes my opinion of that. Men over the age of about 25 really should not be seen anywhere but their own backyards and maybe a swimming pool without a shirt. This guy was very tan and had some muscle so he apparently takes so care of his appearance, but his man boobs, his belly, and that fat across his back has started to head south and get lumpy. It was not a pleasant sight. All of those body parts look so much better with a little polyester covering them.

We're going back to the park today but may not stay long if it's cold. Regis is doing laundry and I went to the grocery store so we feel like we've accomplished some things today. Our dog alarm (not Kramer who is a late sleeper) woke us up today but not until 7 which is a more humane hour than 5.

Gorgeous fall weather today!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Saturday

I had such good intentions of getting up and doing some chores around here...like the dishes that have been waiting for two days. But here I sit in my waddlesome slothfulness, not doing much of anything but listening to one neighbor's dog bark in that shrill way that makes me hope he gets eaten by a rattlesnake and watching the other one stumble out of the back forty acres to pack his car with salsa and head to the farmer's market.

Our old friend and letter carrier, Tom Hynes, retired from the post office this month. Yesterday was his last actual day of carrying mail so we met at the local watering hole to lift a glass to Tom. We're going to have another celebration next week and the final big and official retirement party on the 29th. He's the first in our group of friends to retire so we have to make a splash.

This is the weekend of the Rock Bend Folk Festival in St. Peter. We love to spend the whole weekend at the park in our lawn chairs. This year they have a great music line-up. Check it out. The weather should be great if that mass of rain in South Dakota doesn't move this far east.

Ok...I have procrastinated long enough. Time to get the butt off the chair and do something before I stiffen up and can't move.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

spiders

Thinking about spiders today. This morning, a spider had built a web over the kitchen sink drain. I started to run water before I saw he was trying to escape. I scooped him out with the only thing handy...a butter knife. I thought I had killed him but I let him lay behind the dish soap for a while because I could see he was trying to dry out his legs. I dabbed him a little with a dish towel but didn't want to squash him. By the time I went to work, he was right-side-up and moving a little. When I came home, he had moved on.

I hate killing spiders and usually don't. If there's a daddy-long-legs in the tub, I'll lay a towel over the edge so he can get out and they usually take advantage of the escape route. I have a pretty good colony in the basement and I allow them to live peacefully down there unless we're having company, then they have to relocate to the main compartment of the shop vac.

Tiffany lives in the basement now and the word must be out: Not friendly to spiders. She will not cohabitate with them. She gets out the shop vac for purposes other than temporary relocation, she sprays them with pesticides, and she kills them dead. Poor spiders.

Cheese and music

I came home and picked up the crap that had accumulated from the first two days of school. Who comes in here and messes things up while we're gone? I had dough in the refrigerator from the party so I made pizza. Regis has been intrigued by the mozzarella that I bought at the coop. It tastes so much better than that cardboard stuff that comes shredded in a plastic bag. Tom said it's easy to make so now Regis wants a new hobby. Uh oh.

I think I forgot to mention the basil gimlets we made for the party. If you have basil in your garden, these are definitely worth the trouble. I wouldn't make them all the time, but once a summer, they're delicious. Here's the recipe for the syrup:

4 cups packed fresh basil sprigs (top 4 inches; from a 1/2-pound bunch)
4 cups water
2 cups sugar
9 (4- by 1-inch) strips lemon zest

Bring to a boil to dissolve sugar. Let cool covered for an hour. Refrigerate to cool completely. Strain and press leaves.

To make the drink, use 1 cup of syrup, 3/4 cup of vodka, and 3/4 cup of fresh squeezed lemon juice. Stir in ice to chill and pour into an old fashioned glass.

Mom's leaving for Seattle on Friday with my cousin Deb to visit her sisters in Washington. I hate to travel (lame, I know) so I'm staying home but I hope they take pictures so I can post them here. Mom's 77 and her sisters are older so it ought to be a whooping good time. But there are folks like Steve Fossett who will climb into a hot air balloon and cross the ocean and then there are people like me who pack a bag and think about it for a week to go to New Ulm. What the hell. It's a good thing we aren't all travelers. Nobody would ever be at home.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

First Day of School

I don't know who this guy is but when I did a google search for first day of school images, this picture of him and Gracie is the first thing that popped up. I love the sign. Gracie's first day of school. Speaking of anthropomorphism (were we?), my neighbor dog Waldo has had to wear a t-shirt lately. He had surgery to remove something from his insides and he was worrying the stitches. Through the window now, I can see someone swinging in the hammock and Waldo is dancing around like he's loopy. He likes to play ball and doesn't think this lazy hammock swinging is much fun.

Regis and I both woke up at 4 this morning. It seemed like an ok idea at the time but by 6:30, not so much. We were ready for naps but it was time to go to work. The first day of school was fine but not as exciting as when I had new shoes and new underwear and a pencil box.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Last day of summer=new refrigerator

We got a wild hair today and went to Sears and bought new appliances. In the last few weeks with all the cooking activity, I got tired of trying to find things in my broken down old refrigerator. Regis opened the door of the freezer yesterday and the shelf broke and spilled things everywhere. This is the new model...an Amana with the freezer drawer on the bottom and French doors on the top la dee da. It has a deli drawer for meat and cheese and little symbols on the other drawers so you know if the humidity should be high or low. A refrigerator for dummies. Now we have to modify the space so it fits in the kitchen. It's about five cubic feet bigger than the old one although that doesn't mean much since they count space that doesn't really exist according to Consumer Reports. Places like where the light bulb is and where the switch is that can't be used as storage space.

It's the last official day of summer and it's hot and humid here to prove it. We're going to cook on the grill again...the shish kabobs that didn't get cooked yesterday and maybe some of the piza bread. Joanne asked for the crab cake recipe:

Grilled Crab Cakes
* 3/4 pound crabmeat
* 1 cup plain bread crumbs
* 3/4 cup mayonnaise
* 1 egg, beaten
* 2 green onions, minced
* Hot sauce, to taste
* Salt and pepper, to taste

Mango Salsa:
* 1 mango, peeled, pitted and diced
* 1 red onion, diced
* 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
* 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
* 1 lime, juiced
* Minced jalapeno, to taste
* Salt and pepper, to taste

DIRECTIONS
1. Drain the crabmeat. In a large bowl, mix the crabmeat, bread crumbs, mayonnaise, egg, green onions, hot sauce, and salt and pepper until combined. Shape the mixture into 16 small cakes. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl combine the diced mango, onion, basil, cilantro, lime juice, jalapeno (if using), and salt and pepper. Refrigerate until ready to use.
3. Cook in a frying pan with small amount of oil or on the grill on foil sprayed with Pam.

Not much else to report today. Happy Labor Day to all you hard workers and union members!

Flies and heat almost win

The party yesterday was fun but the heat was more than we planned on (a humid 90 in the afternoon with no breeze) and the flies were horrific. I had way too much food and I needed a sous chef for all the chopping and mixing and preparation. The food we did have was good, and Betty helped by bringing chicken and bacon wraps, and Paul brought ribs. I made the pizza, the stuffed mushrooms, and the crab cakes which tipped in the refrigerator and ran all over the top shelf. Another mess to clean up today.

Regis and Amber are back from their week of honeymoon travels so they stopped to tell a few stories about the trip. You can see their pictures here.

Regis was busy with the flyswatter so no pictures were taken. Probably a good thing. We all looked a little wilted in the heat.