Friday, March 07, 2014

Some Friendly Advice

You all are good cooks. I know this because I make your recipes all the time. I use the recipes you pin and recommend. Sometimes I even use your recipes (with permission of course) when writing my column for Go Dairy Free.

So listen to me when I tell you: YOU NEED TO ENTER RECIPE CONTESTS. Like this one.

I have now judged a few recipe contests and I feel confident in telling you that you are qualified to enter. More than qualified, and you just may win. So do it, please, for the sake of the recipe testers if nothing else.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

A contest and a meme: Blogging like it's 2007

I'm enjoying the blogging renaissance that is happening in my feed reader. In that spirit, I present a contest and my answers to a meme.

The Fast and Fresh Dairy-Free Time Trials Recipe Contest

You guys need to enter this. For serious. (Who was the actress who said that at an awards show a few years ago? She ran off with a married co-star? Think Keri Russell or Claire Danes, but not them.)

Enter for fun! For the Olympic spirit! For the $500 gift card!

Nicole tagged me in a meme. Here we go.

1) If Jane had 3 apples and John had 78 nails, how many layers of clothing are you wearing (how is the weather in your neck of the woods?)?

You got this question from my second grader's math homework, didn't you? 

It is cold here. Polar vortex cold. We are running out of places to put the shoveled snow, the entire state is having a road salt shortage, and we have used up all of our snow days--because of temperatures, not snowfall. 


2. What is keeping you sane during these long winter months?
Sherlock. Downton Abbey. Rosamunde Pilcher. Cooking. Reading the Little House series to the kids every night. 

3. If you were on a boat with a box of chocolate and your Mother In Law, who would you throw overboard?

I don't see why I have to throw either overboard. Are we sinking? Can't we just share the chocolates and throw away the box? 

Of course I'd pick the chocolate to throw overboard.


4. What’s in your underwear drawer besides underwear?

My mending pile. Although if I haven't gotten to mending it yet this winter, the chances are looking pretty bleak.


5. Do you trust yourself with sharp objects near your face? (as in, do you pluck your own eyebrows? Do you have any eyebrow horror stories?)
Yes, I trust myself. 

6. I am terrified of dead bodies, spiders, and the dentist. What are you scared of?

Roller coasters. Rodents.

7. Are you wearing nail polish? What color?

Essie Cocktail Bling, toes only. 

Now! All I need are some blog awards to tack on the end of this post and it would be perfect.




Friday, January 31, 2014

How to pass the time during a Polar Vortex


  • Make Candy Cane Syrup
  • Make Cocoa Cubes
  • Learn to make balloon animals
  • Draw cartoons
  • Do MadLibs
  • Have a Winter Birthday Party for your eight- and six-year old babies who were ages 1 and -0 when you began blogging. *sniff*
  • Learn about snow rollers
  • Go photograph snow rollers in your neighborhood
  • Bake lots of comfort food
  • Work ahead on homework during snow days
  • Go downtown to your local movie theater and see Frozen
  • Make five billion rainbow loom bracelets
  • Reread the Little House series
  • Listen to the Frozen soundtrack until your family begs for mercy
  • Daydream about summer

Thursday, January 02, 2014

All is quiet...

...on New Year's Day on January second when the children are in school. I can almost hear myself think! Except for the preschooler and Kindergartner arguing in the other room and U2 and Abba on an endless loop in my head. Other than that, though? Peace.

Happy New Year! How are you? In spite of enjoying the quiet, I am sad Christmastime is over. I am definitely a 12 Days of Christmas Elf. I love the time when all the chaos is over and we are snug in our little house with nowhere to go, sitting in the glow of the Christmas tree lights. I married an Advent Elf, but have passed the 12-Days gene on to our children. Last year Eli's first-grade teacher read his class The After-Christmas Tree. It talks about all the fun things a family did during the Christmas season, how they feel sad when it's over, and an idea the mother has to make things fun for a little bit longer. We loved the book so much that we ordered our own copy and promised to make an After-Christmas Tree this year.

In December I read it to his second-grade class and we made pinecone/peanut butter (no nut allergies)/birdseed ornaments for the kids to take home. You're welcome, parents of Eli's classmates! Please don't tell me how your pinecone went directly into the circular file! And on the 31st, we dragged our un-decorated Christmas tree into the backyard and decorated it with birdseed ornaments. It has since blown over and is covered with about 4 inches of snow. It's the thought that counts, birds and squirrels and voles and other rodents!

And no, the irony is not lost on me. I complain all year about the bird poo left on our swingset by birds attracted to neighborhood birdfeeders. Yet here we are, with a pet cockatiel in the house and a birdseed-covered Christmas tree in the yard. Parenthood makes one do incredible things.

Speaking of incredible things, you all need to enter some of your delicious recipes in the So Delicious Dairy Free Three-Course Recipe Contest. I am not allowed to enter (sad trombone) but you are! There are three $500 grand prizes in gift-card form, and ten runner-up prizes! Get cooking, please! If your recipes teach me how to make a meal of candy canes, clementines, nuts, fancy crackers, and Stonewall Kitchen sauces, even better.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Potpourri


  • I stole my title from Superjules.
  • E's named this year's jack o' lantern Mr. Bipples. I don't want to forget that.
  • Nor do I want to forget G's current stage of yelling, "I do it my OWNself!" at everyone alternated with telling us, "I luff you. You want hugs and kisses?" 
  • We are in week three of having work done on the house. Exciting work like: re-plastering the kitchen ceiling, making a doorway from the kitchen to the living room, and prying the 70s vinyl wallboard off the bathroom walls. Hey, I'm happy about it. Or I will be when it's finished.
  • Maybe when you have work done in your house and you are living in the house, don't have work done in the kitchen AND in your one bathroom at the same time. Pro tip.
  • We do have a Pittsburgh toilet in the basement, so that's helpful.
  • And I can do crock pot cooking. I am loving Stephanie's new book. 
  • Alisa's apple butter is cooking in the crock pot right now. 
  • I am still thinking about Swistle's coffee shop post. And wishing Tessie would blog again.
  • One of us needs to win this wild blueberries sweepstakes.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Brain Dump, Vaguely Allergy Style

In the process of sitting down to write this post, I received seven! phone calls. I don't know why I can't get anything done.

ANYWAY, bullet time:

  • Go Dairy Free is having a Bob's Red Mill grains giveaway! Enter by Oct. 2.
  • You can learn more about the quinoa you might win here.
  • Stephanie O'Dea's newest Slow Cooker book is out. It's on my birthday list, hint hint.
  • Yes, my birthday is tomorrow. It can be late.
  • Isn't it weird to hit ages you remember your parents being? I still remember the '39 forever' cocktail napkins someone bought my dad as a joke. And here we are.
  • Julie Bowen narrates a free children's allergy e-book you can find here. Don't tell me what happened on Modern Family; we're watching it tonight.
  • Modern Family will help wash away the tears left from last night's NYPD Blue episode where Bobby died. Why did I watch it again? Whhhyyy?
  • We recently had the chance to try Enjoy Life Food's Decadent Bars. While I enjoy making homemade granola bars, it is so nice to have a prepackaged snack option I trust that is nationally available. These are perfect to take to events where the snack may not be safe, and they are an easy item to tell people about if they want to provide a safe snack. The flavors are Chocolate SunButter (our favorite), S'mores (the kids' favorite), Cinnamon Bun, and Cherry Cobbler. I will definitely be buying them.
  • We have a ton of apples in the house right now. Yay, fall! What are your favorite apple recipes? 
  • And, there's the phone again....