Wednesday, April 26, 2006

My baby's first present

Our unborn baby received its first gift today!

A little explanation:

A lady in my crocheting group, Ruth, just happens to be the mother-in-law of one of my work friends, Becky. Several months ago, I gave Becky a bag of yarn to give to Ruth (before I joined the crochet group).

The yarn I gave her was from my late stepmother, Dianne. My dad had given me all of her crocheting hooks, yarn, pattern books, and partially started projects. There was more yarn than I had room for, so I gave some away to some girls at the office.

I had planned on asking my stepmom to teach me to crochet. She died before I was able to, on March 22, 2005. I've since learned a few things on my own, and joined a Yahoo group of local area crocheters.

Today, Becky brought me an adorable baby afghan Ruth made out of some of the yarn I gave her. It is a double-strand afghan, made from a cream, rose, and emerald variegated yarn. It is beautiful.

On the package, Ruth wrote, "Using Grandma's yarn."

I was a blubbery mess for a few minutes. I will definitely treasure this blanket.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Leave your name and...

Leave your name and...
1. I'll respond with something random about you.
2. I'll challenge you to try something.
3. I'll pick a color that associates with you.
4. I'll tell you something I like about you.
5. I'll tell you my first/clearest memory of you.
6. I'll tell you what animal you remind me of.
7. I'll ask you something I've always wanted to ask you.
8. If I do this for you, you must post this on yours.

My Aunt B (catlover926) has answered the above questions for me, so here's hers:

1. I always thought you looked very dark and exotic in your high school photos- very unlike my own pale skin and hair.

2. I challenge you to try It will change your life.

3. I associate you with forest green and burgundy- rich and earthy.

4. I like that you break all known stereotypes of small town women.

5. It's not an early memory, but I always remember you and I road-tripping to the reunion in Colorado. I feel like that was the first time we connected as adults.

6. You remind me of a horse- regal, proud, sensitive, and intelligent, but still very much a steadfast beast of burden. And I mean that in the best way possible.

7. Are you sure you didn't have a baby girl by a handsome blond guy in 1976 and then turn her over to him and another chick to raise?

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

It's official...I'm knocked up!

Well, ladies and germs, I'm gonna have a baby!

Obviously, dear husband and I are ecstatic, excited, over the moon, happy, joyful, gleeful, etcetera etcetera!

We pretty much knew I was pregnant this weekend, but wanted to confirm it at the doctor's office before announcing. I went yesterday afternoon. I'm about 5 weeks along, due on Dec. 21.

This will be our first non-furry child, and it will be the first grandbaby on my side. My brothers and sisters are very excited about being uncles and aunts for the first time.

I got some excellent high quality squeals from my MIL, my cousin Laura, and a couple of coworkers.

My dad was strangely short on conversation. Maybe he's in shock. His oldest (and bestest) child (me) is about to turn 30, and now he'll be a grandpa to boot.

I guess I need to get crackalackin' on crocheting- gotta finish the blankie for one of my dawgs, and then start on a baby blankie!


Friday, April 14, 2006

Ungraciousness is disappointing

In a previous post, I wrote about making a German chocolate cake for a coworker's birthday. That coworker was leaving the company several days after her b-day, and would not be acknowledged in the company monthly birthdays the following week.

I liked this girl, and she had confided in me about her situation (shitty treatment by her supervisor) in the weeks prior to her quitting. I was supportive and tried to offer her sound advice on the most mature way to resolve things.

Said coworker came in today to get her last paycheck. I saw her in her old department, talking to a couple of people. She never once acknowledged me. She didn't say "bye" on her last day, either.

She never did say "thank you" for the birthday cake.

I should have known not to expect a "thank you"- she left on a previously scheduled errand before eating her slice, so I left it (and an extra piece for her fiancé) on her desk.

She never returned that day. When she got back the following day, I'm assuming the day-old cake was thrown away. It was never mentioned.

It may seem, from the content of this post, that I am a doormat type- willingly flinging myself at the feet of those who do not deserve it. But I am not. In fact, I consider myself pretty selective of those upon whom I bestow my niceness.

So to figure out that I was throwing good cake after bad is very disappointing. Time to readjust the decency meter.


Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Hump Day and Bonus Recipe

Well, it's officially Wednesday, and my shoulders are killing me from working out last night. The last portion of every Jazzercise class involves various arm moves with hand weights. I have a pair of 5 lb.-ers. Something we did last night really worked the muscles from the base of my neck to the joints of my shoulders.

I still haven't started my period yet...*hopehopehope* that I won't! To give you an idea, I was expecting to start last Thursday (I'm pretty much like clockwork, even off the pill). So either my cycle has gotten longer and I'll start this week, or I'm knocked up. I'm desperately hoping for the latter.

That gets two things crossed off the list, the second one being finding a new job. Since I have made prior arrangements with my current boss to do my job from home with our eventual baby, if I am preggo, I'll stay where I am.

This is ideal, since I already have good insurance and an established 401K. I'd only have to work 20 hours a week to keep contributing to the 401, and since I can do most of my work from home, I'll only have to come to the office once a week or so.

THAT part is what I'm most excited about- being away from the High School That Is My Place of Employment. It's a crying shame; twenty-something women who think that a good life consists of bar hopping and forming cliques in the office. They turn their noses up at women like me who enjoy cooking and actually like our husbands, not think of them as idiots to be tolerated, and who want to raise our children, not dump them in daycare for strangers to raise.

For a bonus recipe today, I present you with Bob's Beautiful Blessed Brown Beans.

It's my Pawpaw's recipe. When I asked him for it, of course, like all good country cooks, he had no measurements of spices to impart, only ingredients and a "taste and see" attitude. He uses bacon instead of ham. He uses store bought chili powder and plenty of Tabasco.

I like the chunkiness and texture of ham, personally, and since he gave me some of his dried peppers last week, I used them instead of chili powder and Tabasco. This dish can be made mild or spicy. You could use red beans instead of pintos and andouille sausage instead of ham for a more Cajun flavor.

Bob's Beautiful Blessed Brown Beans
Serves 4-6

1 lb. dry pinto beans
1-1.5 lb. cooked boneless ham, cubed
1 tsp. garlic granules (not powder- granules are stronger)
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. Pawpaw's Peppers (his own homegrown mixture of dried and ground peppers- I assume cayenne, jalapeño, some others)
~or~ substitute chili powder from the grocery store and a few drops of Tabasco sauce
1-2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper

Rinse the beans in a colander and remove any pebbles. Soak the beans in about 7 cups of water at least overnight. I soaked mine for a whole day. Rinse again, discarding the soaking water. Pawpaw says this helps "take out the farts" from the beans. LOL

In a large stock pot, combine the beans, cubed ham, and spices. Add enough cold water to cover by a good inch. Bring to a boil, stirring periodically. Reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered until the beans are tender and the liquid has reduced to the level of just covering the beans. Cooking a little while longer will make the spiciness of the liquid less intense, as it cooks into the beans.

Remove from heat and let the pot sit, covered, for about 20 minutes. Test for salt/spices.

Serve with hot cornbread and fresh sweet tea.

Monday, April 10, 2006

I may or may not be pollinated

Keep your fingers crossed that my husband's super sperm has worked, intrepid readers. I am pretty sure I'm late for my period. If'n I don't start by the end of this week, I'll be rushing out to purchase a pregnancy test and doing cartwheels (figuratively and emotionally speaking, anyway).

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Update now, recipe later

Update first...

Hubby and I made a German chocolate cake last night, to bring today for a coworker's birthday. Friday is Coworker's last day, and the other April birthdays are being celebrated next week. So I baked, and he stirred, and when all was said and done, we had a lovely two-layer cake with plenty of gooey homemade coconut and pecan frosting.

It's terribly difficult to not go dig in right now! But I can wait until after lunch, I guess. When I bake, I like to make everything from scratch. Many people I work with turn up their noses at anything homemade. *cough*jealousbitches*coughcough* Fark 'em all, more cake for me!

I've been pounding out resumes by email and fax, and consulting with staffing agencies, who are mostly worthless. Every one of them wants you to come in for an hour and a half, fill out scads of paperwork duplicating your farking resume, and take endless data entry, typing, and 10-key computer tests.

I have a job interview, finally. One of the staffing agencies (!) called me yesterday, telling me that they were sending my resume out to two law firms. One of them wants to meet me. Yay!