Wednesday, March 29, 2006


I have the weirdest thoughts sometimes, and come up with some very strange questions I don't have answers to.

If a bird has hollow bones, which many do because it lessens weight and promotes the ability to fly, then do they have bone marrow filling up the hollow spaces? If not, then where are their blood cells generated?

Do dogs get boogers? I mean, I know they can sneeze, and that they can have a cold. But do they get normal, every day boogers in their noses like people do?

Seriously, this crap keeps me up at night sometimes.

Recipe Tuesday, er, Wednesday

Dude, I totally spaced yesterday on my promise to provide a new recipe, so here goes.

Bodacious Beef Stew

Serves 4-6

1.5 lbs. lean stew meat (roast, round steak, whatever), trimmed and cubed
1 large onion, chopped (large = baseball sized...I hate it when recipes don't specify- onions come in lots of sizes!)
4-5 large carrots, peeled and chopped, or about 1 c. whole baby carrots (We like the big ones- baby carrots are much sweeter)
4-5 stalks celery, chopped (Don't be afraid to use the leaves!)
2-3 medium potatoes, peeled or unpeeled, chopped
3/4 c. pearl barley (I use Quaker brand in a white box)
1/2 to 1 c. good quality red wine (more or less to taste), such as Merlot or Cab-Sauv
2 bay leaves
1.5 tsp. dried thyme
1.5 tsp. dried rosemary
3-4 cloves garlic, peeled
4 c. beef broth or stock (I use hot water and 4 bouillion cubes)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Extra virgin olive oil

Drizzle some olive oil into a large stock pot over medium/high heat. Add the beef chunks, season with kosher salt and pepper, and stir until the beef begins to brown. Pour in about a half a cup of dry red wine. (I usually don't measure the wine...just pour a few splashes straight from the bottle.) Add the chopped onions, carrots, and celery. Stir and cook until the beef is fully browned.

Crush the dried rosemary with a mortar and pestle. Add the rosemary, dried thyme, and bay leaves; crush the garlic through a press right over the pot and scrape it off the press with a knife. Pour in the beef stock and barley. Bring to a gentle boil and cook covered for about 20 minutes, until the barley just begins to soften, stirring periodically.

Your kitchen should possess a delightful mixture of scents of beef, wine, herbs, and vegetables.

While the barley is cooking, prepare the potatoes. Peel off the skins, if desired. Sometimes I leave them on and just cube the taters. I only add two medium potatoes to mine, and I make fairly small cubes.

Add the potatoes when the barley is just beginning to look translucent on the edges. Get yourself a tasting bowl and a spoon. Ladle out some of the liquid and taste for seasoning. If desired, add more red wine. It should not need more salt, since beef broth adds plenty, but season to your tastes.

Remove the lid and finish cooking the potatoes, about another 10-15 minutes. Remember to stir occasionally.

Serve big bowls of this lovely stew with a side of good bread. It's even better the second day, but you may have to thin it with a little water.

Bon appetit!

Monday, March 27, 2006

Ahh, another Monday

I'll try to keep it short, since the last couple of posts were pretty lengthy.

Found some new blogs to read- High Desert Diva's Dive and The Idle Receptionist. They are both very smart, snarky ladies, and they deserve a visit and a read.

This weekend was spent with hubby doing yard work. Took down a tree and a bunch of ugly shrubs, filled the truck bed four times. Scintillating, I know.

I've recently joined a few Yahoo groups, and they are working out swimmingly. One is a stay-at-home moms group- not much activity there. I've IMed with one of the moms several times. The rest are too Jesus-y for my tastes.

The crocheters group is awesome. I'm meeting with several of them on Wednesday at a local yarn/coffee store. Should be fun- they have lots to teach me. They are mostly older than I am, which is good. I don't share much in common with most chicks my age.

Also signed up for a group that I'm literally related to. A bunch of distant cousins are putting together genealogy and ancestry information for a book to be published. The ancestor we all share was an Italian farmer from Genoa who came here in the late 1700s and then joined in the Revolutionary War. Sweet! He had a total of 18 children with two wives, and of course these children have begat tons more all over the country. I've been able to IM with a pretty cool lady in Oregon that I'm distantly related to.

Remember, tomorrow is Recipe Tuesday! This week's installment: Bodacious Beef Stew.


Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Another dadgum survey meme

[Marital Status]Happily hitched
[Shoe size]9
[Parents still together]Thank the gods, NO
[Pets]Three dadgum dawgs
[Animal] Other than dawgs? Anything with fur or feathers.
[Drinks] Crown and coke, Grey goose and cranberry
[Soda] Coke
[Book] The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands
[Flower] Roses
[Color your hair?] Highlights
[Twirl your hair?] My husband is responsible for that
[Have tattoos?] Yes, two, working on a modification of one
[Have Piercings?] Just ears
[Cheat on tests/homework?] No way
[Drink/Smoke?] Drink occasionally, former smoker- makes me sick now
[Like roller coasters?] Hells to the yeah
[Wish you could live somewhere else?] Somewhere with real winter would be nice
[Want more piercings?] Nope
[Like cleaning?] I like doing laundry and vacuuming...hate dusting.
[Write in cursive or print?] Both
[Own a web cam?] Nope
[Know how to drive?] Yes
[Own a cell phone?] Yes
[Ever get off the damn computer?] Hardly
[Been in a fist fight?] Yes (brief but interesting)
[Considered a life of crime?] Yes (who hasn't?)
[Considered being a hooker?] Yes (again, who hasn't?)
[Lied to someone?] Yes (very bad idea)
[Been in love?] Yes
[Made out with JUST a friend?] Yes
[Been in lust?] Yes
[Used someone] Yes (shame on me)
[Been used?] Yes
[Been cheated on?] Yes
[Kicked someone in the nuts?] Yes, but it's been a loooong time so hopefully I'm forgiven by now
[Stolen anything?] Yes
[Held a gun] Yes, and I'm a pretty durn good shot, too.
[Current clothing] Dress casual- jeans and a white cable knit cardigan/shell
[Current mood] Optimistic
[Current taste] Good home-cooked food
[What you currently smell like] D&G Feminine
[Current hair] Blond, layered, just below chin, flipped out
[Current thing I ought to be doing] Working
[Current cd in stereo] CD? What's that? MP3 all the way baby! Oh, uh, "Feel Good Inc." by Gorillaz is gettin' wore the hell out.
[Last book you read] "Strange Highways" by Dean Koontz
[Last movie you saw] "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" (it rawked as usual)
[Last thing you ate] Chicken lo mein and fortune cookies
[Last person you talked to on the phone] My Meemaw
[Do drugs?] Nope
[Believe there is life on other planets?] Yes!
Remember your first love?] Yes
[Still love him/her?] Nope
[Read the newspaper?] Nope
[Have any gay or lesbian friends?] Nope
[Believe in miracles?] Not really
[Do well in school?] Summa Cum Laude, baby!
[Wear hats] Only to sporting events
[Hate yourself?] Nope- dude, I rawk
[Have an obsession?] Perfectionism
[Collect anything?] Nope
[Have a best friend?] My husband
[Close friends?] Blanca, Barbara, Beth (hey, that's neato)
[Like your handwriting?] Yes
[Care about looks] Yes
[First crush] Mark in second grade
[First kiss] Chris in 11th grade (yes, late bloomer...shut up)
[Do you believe in love at first sight?] No- lust for sure, but love takes more time and information
[Do you believe in "the one?"] Yes
[Are you a tease?] No
[Too shy to make the first move?] Yes
[Daydreamer] Yes
[Bitch/Asshole] Bitch
[sarcastic] Could be
[Angel] I'm very well behaved
[Devil] No way!
[Shy] Not at all like I used to be
[Talkative] Can be


Wednesday, March 15, 2006


Wow, what a blogloser I am. March 15th already, and I haven't posted since the end of February.

Several lovely things to update with...I'll start with today and work backwards.

This morning was just peachy. I had my very first (and hopefully last) sclerotherapy treatment for a varicose vein on my left thigh. These fabulous purple veins run in my family, and become worse after childbearing. Since I'm attempting to get pregnant, I thought I'd get it taken care of now, especially since this one causes me discomfort when I'm standing. Sclerotherapy consists of numerous injections of a chemical irritant to the area. The needle stick is the smallest I've ever felt, but that ain't the bad part. When the doctor pushes that plunger, hang on. It burns like a sumbitch. But I gritted my teeth and took it like a skwerl.

Last Saturday was fun- I volunteered at PetSmart with the animal organization I've been with since last fall. It's total relaxation therapy, playing with puppies and dogs all day long. I love it. I'm going to another place this Saturday afternoon, an organization that provides low cost spaying and neutering.

I've joined a few Yahoo groups in the past few weeks, and they are turning out great. I found one of crocheters in my area, since I've been teaching myself to crochet. If things work out, I'll be meeting some of the women from the group at a little yarn shop/coffee shop near downtown on Saturday evening.

Another group I joined is a stay at home moms group in my area. Although I don't have any kids yet, I plan to be a SAHM. Well, actually, plan schman, I'm doing it! No one will be raising my babies except me and my husband. I've been IMing with one of the moms, and we are hitting it off.

If you're wondering about the post title, verfuckled is a faboo new word coined by another blogger, Og. I actually read about it on the blog of Velociman, who just happens to be my literary hero for all his fecundity of big words. I left a comment on his blog the other day that whenever I read him, I feel like I need a nap and a Gatorade. Yeah, it's that good.

Now that the past is taken care of, to the future: Aside from the crocheting coffee klatch in planning, I am scheduled to give blood on Saturday morning. Woo. And more fun with doctors next Monday, my annual poke and prod with the gyno.

Next week is just not looking good. After the poke and prod on Monday, I have Wednesday to deal with. For one, it's the first anniversary of my stepmom's death. Because my dad is kind of weird sometimes, I don't even know where in the cemetary her ashes were placed. (Grandma was in the hospital shortly after the funeral, and he didn't want to "bother" people with an interment thingy. Like I said, weirdo.)

After work Wednesday is a pretty much obligatory bridal shower for our operations manager at work. I wish I could skip it. It's not that I don't like this chick, I just don't feel like going. Plus, she and her HTB have committed three major etiquette faux pas: registration cards in the wedding invitation envelopes; they have registered for everything under the sun, including their honeymoon; and they registered like they don't own anything- they are living together in a house she owns, and certainly have a household set up already.

I mean, seriously. DH and I had a wedding registry while shacking up too, but we didn't use it as a household upgrade opportunity. We already had pans, dishes, towels, etc., and didn't try to cash in just because we were making it legit.

Oh da well.

And I'm looking for a new job. After two and a half years here, I'm so ready to move into my field (legal assistant). This company has issues, and they are legion. Add that to the facts that I'm doing accounting instead of legal work, there's no room for advancement, and that I've only gone up in pay once in two and half years, I doubt anyone will hold it against me.

Wish me luck!