November 28, 2008
November 26, 2008
Wishing you all a very happy Thanksgiving with:
-loving friends and family
-and lots of laughter*
*and if you need something to get a good laugh out of…take a look at the tissue paper turkey above. It has just been way too long since i have seen a good tissue paper turkey.
November 24, 2008
As I have mentioned, I am fortunate enough to work at a non profit organization. For those of you who have spent your whole lives working in lovely for profit companies receiving good benefits and being let out of work a few hours early the day before a holiday…here are five things you probably never wanted to know about NPO’s.
1. In addition to having a boss and a bosses boss, I report to an illusive group of well connected people we call “THE BOARD”. Once a month THE BOARD gets together to talk about fascinating things like the budget and the staff and oil contracts.
2. You know THE BOARD is in the vicinity because people are running around in heals with piles of paper and screaming things like ‘PACKETS’ and ‘POWER POINT PRESENTATION’ before slamming into other well intended employees trying to get coffee or use the bathroom.
3. Every once in a while, if you are working on a particularly sexy or lucrative project, you are asked to present it to THE BOARD. When this happens you too run around in heals with piles of paper and you keep a little travel deodorant in your pocket in an effort to convince yourself you can prevent large circles of perspiration from forming under your arms.
4. When you present to THE BOARD, you lul yourself into a false sense of security by preparing loads of information and statistics and highlighting key phrases and tid bits of information you believe will make you sound smart or at least competent enough to cash your next paycheck.
5. Regardless of how well prepared you are, how many color coded highlighted packets you have carried with you, inevitably you are asked a question to which you have NO clue of the answer. This never fails. They must have a training camp for smelling the subject area you are least familiar with and then moving in for the question kill.
Can anyone guess how I spent my Friday?????
November 21, 2008
I made this for dinner last night and it was delicious. If you don’t like broccolini you can probably swap it out for regular broccoli or another green veggie, although I think it is really delicious as is. Enjoy and if you make it, please let me know how it goes!
12 oz bow tie (farfalle) pasta
1 package (20 oz) hot Italian sausage*
1 lb broccolini or broccoli rabe, cut crosswise in half
1 pt grape tomatoes
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan
Cook pasta as box directs in salted water, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking water before draining.
Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook sausage, breaking up unto chunks with spoon, 4 minutes or until no loner pink.
Add reserved pasta water and broccolini to skillet. Cover; cook 3 minutes. Add tomatoes, cover and cook 2 minutes until tomatoes just begin to burst. Toss with cooked pasta and Parmesan. Serve with additional Parmesan if desired.
* you can use turkey sausage if you prefer
November 17, 2008
Saturday my college friends and I piled into D’s yellow Jeep wrangler and made our way to CT to visit our good friend A. As aforementioned, spending time with these three women is both relaxing and rejuvenating and always full of laughter, hugs and lots and lots of wine. That is, until you hear you friend say the following five words:
Congratulations A&B. After seeing your loyalty to your family, the kindness you show your friends and the love you have for each other; I have no doubt you are going to be amazing parents. We are so very happy for you.
November 14, 2008
This time of year D and I get into a ‘big breakfast on Sunday’ routine. It is nice to sit down together and eat something fun or fattening or both. Recently a friend of mine gave me wheat (which I am allergic too) free baking mix so I will most definitely be making these soon. You can serve them for breakfast if you wish or for dessert with some whipped cream an berries. Actually, I am not sure there is ever a time you would not want to serve chocolate pancakes.
2 cups baking mix
1 cup non fat milk
4 tablespoons coco mix*
1/2 cup mini chocolate pieces
mix baking mix, milk, eggs and coco in a large bowl. Fold in chocolate pieces. For each pancake, pour 1/4 cup batter onto hot nonstick skillet; cook until bubbles form on top; flip pancakes; cook through. Serve with syrup, jam or fresh whipped cream.
*you can combine 2 tablespoons of unsweetened coco and 2 tablespoons of sugar if you don’t have coco mix
November 12, 2008
Typically I don’t even remember my dreams so I seldom obsess over them. If something is particularly disturbing I might recall it first thing in the morning, but by the time I try to tell anyone, I have totally forgotten the relevant details. However, last week I had by far one of the most disturbing dreams…ever. I dreamed that somehow a baby bat became embedded underneath the skin of my right calf. And after seeing a doctor about the BAT IN MY LEG, he told me that there was nothing he could do and I had to wait for it to dissolve. So, lets recap… there is a bat living in the flesh under my skin and I have to wait for it to dissolve. And in the dream no one is freaking out about this. I cam see the bones and the veins and the wings of the bat moving around under the skin and I can feel the creature and it itches and it is not good. I have been racking my brain to try to figure out what this could possibly mean and I have come up with the following five options (with a little help from Google).
one: there is actually a bat living in m leg. It is moving around and spreading it’s little bat wings and my dream was a premonition of the day I see a dr and he/she is totally unconcerned about it. This is by far my least favorite option.
two: to dream of a bat symbolizes demons and uncleanliness. To dream of a white bat signifies the death of a family member. To dream of a black bat signifies personal disaster. So my demon filled dirty life is going to meet personal disaster when a family member kicks the bucket? Great. Option #1 is looking better and better.
three: to dream of your legs indicates that you have regained your confidence and can stand on your own. What happens if you can’t stand at all do to a bat-in-the-leg infestation? Still, better than one or two.
four: to dream of a doctor indicates your need for emotional and spiritual healing. Not emotional OR spiritual healing, emotional AND spiritual healing. Well of course I need healing, I have a BAT living in my leg!
five: to dream that you are injured indicates that you need to work on healing old wounds. Is this in addition to the new wounds?
What do you think? Does anyone have special dream interpretation skills? Have I totally lost my mind?
THIS is living in my leg?
November 10, 2008
Veterans day is tomorrow and I thought that in addition to using the day off to meet a girl friend for lunch and take advantage of some department store sales, I would take a moment to remember those who have served and are still serving our country. If you are looking for a way to honor or remember a veteran, here are five of my favorites.
1- call your local VA hospital and sign up to be a volunteer – this is something I had to do in college as part of a class on the legacies of the Vietnam war and at the risk of sounding dramatic; it was truly a profound experience. Since many veterans travel to go to a VA hospital often they are with out friends or family nearby. In addition to providing service to the hospital volunteers make wonderful companions and visitors to patients. You may find that sometimes the nicest thing we can do for another person is to sit listen. You can check it out here if you are interested.
2- donate to a CARE package- CARE traces its roots to the days after WWII when 22 American organizations combined forces to rush emergency rations in the form of “CARE packages” to war-torn Europe. CARE not only provides packages to soldiers but continues to be a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. You can give to CARE here, or contact your nearest American Legion post to find out where there are drop sites by you (ours is a local bank). They will happily give you a list of what soldiers are in need of (most of the list is disturbingly simple; toiletries, sunblock, paper, playing cards, etc)
3-donate to another veterans organization of your choice- as I have said before; there is no shortage of charitable organizations out there and that is certainly true of veterans organizations. I happen to have a soft spot for the Honor Flight Network, but if you do a little looking I am sure you will find one that moves you.
4- flag a veterans grave – the flagging of graves is generally done on Memorial day but many organizations use Veterans Day as an opportunity to survey graves and find out which of them need a flag holder. The flagging is often done by local boy and girl scout troops, 4H groups, and sons and daughters of military members throughout the country to ensure veterans are honored for their service.
5- fork over a few dollars for a red poppy- The Poppy tradition dates back to September 1920, when the American Legion officially adopted the poppy as its symbol of remembrance. Poppy making provides work for many disabled and hospitalized veterans throughout the country and the funds raised are used to assist veterans and their families in times of need. If you would like to learn more about the American Legion, you can do it here
November 7, 2008
The last day my local farmers market was open, I asked my favorite vegetable and flower provider what I could buy up that would last the longest. He suggested some squash and a few other hearty vegetables (including the most delicious turnips I have ever eaten). For almost 2 weeks now I have had a beautiful butternut squash sitting in my fridge and have yet to be inspired on what to do with it. Then I found this recipe. It is amazingly simple and the butter and spices bring out all natural sweetness and richness naturally found in butternut squash.
2 Tbsp butter
2 lbs fresh butternut squash chunks*
1 1/2 Tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
Heat oven to 400 degrees. You will need a rimmed baking pan lined with nonstick foil.
Put butter in pan. Place in oven until melted. Remove pan from oven and add remaining ingredients. Toss to coat and spread into an even layer.
Roast 25 to 30 minuted, tossing once or twice, until squash is tender. Transfer to serving bowl.
* you can either start with a whole squash or buy the pre-cut chunks in the produce section of your local market. If you start with the whole squash, be careful cutting it. I have nearly taken off four fingers attempting to cut one in half.