She’s Got That Certain ‘Glow’.

Scroll to the bottom for a yogurt maker update.

Am I radioactive now?  I can never remember what the CT scan does…I AM writing this while hanging upside down from the ceiling but that might be the coffee I had at 8pm.  Or I’m still reeling from drinking 3 banana flavored barium drinks.  And I use the term ‘drink’ very, very loosely.  I’ve decided that the taste testing focus group they used to come up with the banana flavor was a bunch WWII vets languishing in a nursing home.

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“I remember having this right before we hit the beaches at Normandy! 23 skidoo!”

So yeah.  CT scan today but nothing to report there.  I’ve had a few of them over the past few years and let me ask you this:  How on earth do I always forget how awful it feels when they inject the iodine??  Not painful bad.  Weird bad.  Have you had one?  They warn you… “You’ll…ummm…feel like you’re peeing your pants.  But you’re not.” It’s strange that I never remember that side effect.  A weird, pants flooded warmth.  Not like a ‘Channing Tatum’ happy warmth in your pants.  More like a ‘Tilda Swinton’ confusing kind of warmth in your pants.  And when you swing your legs off of the table you can’t help yourself.  You are compelled to feel for pee.  So that’s classy.

If you follow me on Facebook you’ll know that I’m trying out my new yogurt maker.  You’ll also know that I’m mathally challenged (I know it’s ‘mathematically’ but I like the way ‘mathally’ sounds better) so like an asshat I started the machine at 7:00pm.  For 7 hours.  That’s right.  I get to set my alarm for 2am to screw the tops onto yogurt jars.  Lame-o.  I’m making Judy get up for that one.

It’s kind of a pain because you have to boil the milk first and then let it cool.  See that thermometer?  It’s the second one I’ve owned.  I bit through the glass tube on the first one.  I thought it was the case and couldn’t get it open so I put it into my mouth and bit down.  On glass. Until it shattered. Duuuuuuuh.

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The milk looks good but that glass tube looks freaking DELICIOUS!

So now we wait.  Will it be worth it?  I dunno.  The reviewers on Amazon say it’s the most amazing yogurt you’ll ever have! You’ll never buy store bought again!  It healed my kitten’s broken leg!  As far as I’m concerned, unless it can take a shop vac and a bottle of Windex to the inside of my car it probably won’t be life changing.  But…I did the math (sketchy at best) and it works out to $1.83 for 42 ounces of organic yogurt.  So that doesn’t suck.

So now we wait.

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7…8…9…10…11…12…1…2…Son of a…

And lastly let me leave you with this.

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Waaaaait Foooor It…

This link popped up in my news feed one day.  So I clicked it.  ‘Cause I just can’t help myself!

http://www.modernparentsmessykids.com/2013/03/start-your-day-saying-hello-happy-drink.html

This freaking delicious coffee.  I had a bit of a half & half and sugar problem when it came to my coffee.  Like coffee soup.  But I stumbled across this recipe and I am hooked!  It’s even satisfies my mocha cravings!  I now substitute the half & half for canned coconut milk (this brand is BPA free so no learning disorders for me!  So no MORE learning disorders for me!)  And let me tell you…I tried the light coconut milk for a while and it was ‘good’ but when I switched over to full fat…dreeeeeamy.  And that is healthy fat!!  The raw cacao powder gives it a dark, rich flavor.  Ignore that the picture has a bag of cocoa NIBS.  They were out of powder the other day so I bought the nibs because I assumed they would melt.  Let me assure you…they do not.  At all.  I’ve been chewing my coffee for 3 days.  I even tried whizzing them up in my coffee bean grinder.  That just means I don’t have to chew as hard.  Take note!  Buy the POWDER!!  Anyhoo… It’s sugar free and chock full of healthy stuff.  Plus some people swear it gives you a ‘zing’ of energy.  A teeny squeeze of honey and you’re drinking something pretty awesome.  If I’m feeling extra super fancy I’ll give it a whizz around in the Magic Bullet to make it all frothy.  Who cares that there is a kid peeing on your foot…you’re drinking creamy, chocolatey coffee in your kitchen!

WINNING…even when you smell like toddler urine.  And that’s saying something 😉

Yogurt Maker Update:  I used to get horrible canker sores when I was a kid.  My grandma would pull that giant container of plain yogurt out of her fridge and stand over me while I gagged down bowlfuls of it.  Remember that almost throw up thing you would do when something was just too gross to comprehend?  But you still had to eat it?  Soggy tuna casserole, anyone?  That’s what this yogurt reminds me of…old school yogurt.  Which I think some people would like.  But I’ve only gotten back into yogurt since they introduced Greek style.  Which this yogurt is NOT.  I think I’ll brew (ferment?  yogment?) the next batch longer to see if it will get thicker.  For right now I’m straining it to thicken it up.  A friend mentioned that they sell an attachment to make Greek yogurt?  I wonder what that would be?  A tiny, hairy man with cheese cloth and a fishing hat?  I’ll look into it.

This yogurt tastes extra cottony!

This yogurt tastes extra cottony!

"Judy lets me eat yogurt on the couch!"

“Judy lets me eat yogurt on the couch!”

For the record…my grandma made probiotics cool way before Erin Andrews did.

Last update.  I swear.  With my fingers crossed.

Straining is the key!  It’s delicious!!!  WOOHOO!!!  I mean, it’s work, that’s for sure.  I’m one step away from milking a cow in my backyard.

Yes.  We all know what the liquid looks like, but we're too mature to say it...NO WE'RE NOT!  PEE!  IT LOOKS LIKE PEE!

Yes. We all know what the liquid looks like, but we’re too mature to say it…NO WE’RE NOT! PEE! IT LOOKS LIKE PEE!

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Making Out With Scrooge McDuck Would Probably Be Weird. Maybe.

Money sucks, right?  Not having money sucks because you don’t have any.  (Don’t freak out…I know some people really don’t have ANY money.  I’m talking about the ‘more month than money’ type of broke.)

Having money?  I guess that could suck too because you might just THINK about it all of the time.  Will you always have it?  Is it being mismanaged?  Is someone going to take it from you?

Or maybe you’d just worry about which bathing costume to wear while you swim in your vault of gold coins…

Scrooge McDuck

This is totally what rich people do, right?

Can you tell we’ve been working on our budget?  We’ve talked about it forever.  I had a lot of big ideas involving poster boards and fun markers (Teal! Coral! Heliotrope!).  Every few weeks we’d say, “TONIGHT we’re doing the budget!  Right?  Right!”

Insert dinner/clean up/bath/pjs/teeth/books/bed/more clean up/few loads of laundry.

“Want to watch a Breaking Bad?”

“Okay.  We’ll do the budget TOMORROW.  Right?”

“Right!”

(That’s actually a lie…HE watches Breaking Bad.  I couldn’t make it past the episode with the bathtub scene…shudder…)

But whatever…you see the pattern.  We are an excellent couple but we have the horrible, horrible ability to talk each other out of anything.

However.  The doctors don’t want me working.  I had started waiting tables a few times a week.  It was great.  Out of the house.  Kyle watched the boys so no daycare.  Brought in just enough extra.  I loved where I worked.  And no matter how needy a customer was…I never had to change their diaper.  Except for that one time…(insert 1ooo yard stare).  But that’s on hold for awhile.  And Scrooge McDuck isn’t returning my phone calls. (I had pictured an Indecent Proposal situation but apparently it’s a no go. Maybe he has erectile ducksfunction…heh heh… My apologies. That was awful. Even for me.)

We. Had. To. Budget.

Have you done it?  It’s scary at first.  We accounted for every single dollar we had spent from December until April.  Guess what?  We spent a lot.  On food (oh so much on food).  On ‘entertainment’.  On…stuff.  Oh stuff…you’ll be the end of me.  I hated that first night.  What WAS that $50 at Target??  Shouldn’t I be able to look around and see $50 worth of Target goods?  I just wanted to bury my head under my West Elm Spring Ikat pillow.  But burying my head under that pillow is what got us into this mess.  And also makes me realize that I really need to wash the sheets.

But something else happened too.  Those numbers started to lose their power.  I went from feeling sick to feeling empowered to change things.  It’s not like we spend a ton of money, I was just able to see the areas that we could change.  Small changes.  One tiny baby step at a time.  Because that’s the problem, isn’t it?  You start thinking ‘CHANGES!’ (or at least I do) and then it’s all so big that you just…don’t.

Cut out all processed food.  Make own detergent.  Make all household cleaners .  Hang clothes outside to dry (actually, according to some numbers we crunched if we hung out 7 loads a week it would save $600/year.  But are we really going to do it??).  Make own bread?  Juice! Take dog to doggy dentist.  Wait, take kid to kiddie dentist first.  Meditate.  Meditate without children.  Yoga?  Raise chickens?  Goats?  Sea monkeys?  See naturopathic doctor.  Join slow food movement.  Join slow clothes movement. Shop local.  Vote with my wallet.  Start a garden. More houseplants for better air quality.  Filter on shower head? Make own yogurt?  Get a pen pal.  Write everyday.  Exercise everyday.  Exercise every other day.  Bend over to pick up toys and count that as exercise.  Take an art class.  Take a creative writing class.  Look for freelance writing work.  Spend quality time with girlfriends once a week.  Once every 2 weeks.  Once a month.  Call girlfriends and tell them how much you miss them.

You get my point.

So I started easy.  With my pantry.  Remember?  I cleaned it out.  I cleaned it out real good.  Then I went shopping.  Then I came home and redid the pantry.  I didn’t want to but I DID!  BTW we have a plastic bag ban here now.  Which is awesome.  For people that actually ever remember their reusable bags.  And not awesome for people who don’t.  Guess which camp I fall into??

Our goal is $150/week on groceries.  But I’m thinking $200 will be more realistic.  What do you spend?  This is $152 in groceries.

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I like a bulky grocery shop…get it…lots of bulk items…ahhhh fuhget about it…

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Cooking instructions for my special jackwagon.

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This still needs work…so much work…and yes that is Splenda.  Because I have guests that use Splenda and that’s fine with me.  No need to torture everyone!

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And cold items in the icebox…

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MmmmHmmmm…I like them potatoers…

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You would have been disappointed in me if there hadn’t been a jar of Nutella, right? I did it for you! Yeah, YOU!

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“Hey Ma…I’ma gonna throw all of them potaters on the ground, ‘mkay?” And he did. The End.

It’s been a really great week since the pantry and fridge clean out.  First of all, we’re eating much better. It’s not like we ate Crisco off of a spoon before but we’d just gotten lazy on convenience foods.  I’ll post a blog with different recipes we’ve tried and loved.  Basically we’re just eating clean.  Our sweet neighbors gave us some Swiss chard from their garden…I’ve never had it and I loved it!  I roasted cabbage!  It was great!  The boys are eating almost everything.  Except for tonight…I fed the guys hotdogs after a week of quiona, lentils, greens and veggies.  They were giddy with excitement.  Everything in moderation 😉

But the big change?  We had food left at the end of the week.  I need to go to the store for some staples but I can actually go into the fridge and cabinet and still cook a meal.  The boys are eating more fruits and vegetables…instead of giving them crackers in the afternoon, I’m setting out some veggies.  And if they are really hungry then they’ll eat them.

But let me tell you what.  I am cooking like a pioneer women.

Not shown in photo...children chewing on ankles.

Not shown in photo…children chewing on ankles.

Seriously.  I need to figure out big batch cooking.  This is a family of big eaters so if I don’t double batch cook then there aren’t any leftovers.  And I start over again the next day.  I’m getting better at just boiling eggs or cooking a pot of rice or throwing potatoes in the oven even if I don’t know what I’m going to do with them.  That helps.  But it’s about to be hot, Hot, HOTTER here so I need to figure out a way to not crank my stove during the day and I’ve never had much luck with the crock pot.

So this is my first baby step.  I’m not going to lie…I kind of want to rip into a rib eye.  And I will.  And it will taste extra delicious.  But for right now this feels great.

Also, I get a abdomen CT scan on Thursday.  I feel pretty good about it.  What I don’t feel good about?  Drinking THREE bottles of BANANA FLAVORED BARIUM.  If anyone knows who came up with this flavor I’d like to arrange for a few minutes alone with them.  And a bag of nickels.

And lastly…the newest member of our fish tank family.  The kids call him Froggie.  I call him Creepy Soul Sucker.  I hate this frog.  He just floats there all dead like and I yell, “KYLE!  THE FROG IS DEAD!”  And he yells back, “NO IT ISN’T!!” And then the freaking frog jumps and scares the crap out of me.  Ick.

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Sweet Dreams…I’m probably going to come out and chew your face off while you’re sleeping but don’t worry about it.