Friday, February 28, 2014

I love to see new tips. Tips to stay healthy. Tips to change your life. However, these "tips" more often than naught are terribly disappointing. How can it be a tip if everyone in the world already knows to do it?

Internet Tips

1. Drink lots of water or your cells will shrivel and you'll look old and feel thirsty
2. Sleep 8 hours or be tired
3. If underwater, don't breathe; it's just not safe
4. Eat fruits and vegetables or your systems will get clogged
5. Don't smoke or you'll get lung cancer
6. Exercise- or you'll feel lethargic and get chubbier
7. Don't swallow before food has been chewed enough; try it once and you'll always remember
8. Wear your seatbelt; if you don't you might regret it later
9. Put on enough clothes to be decent when you leave your house
10. Use the right shoes for what you're doing. No, flip flops are not good for running in or hiking

Octopus nails

Real Tips

1. Wear secure water shoes when you swim and go to water parks- then your feet won't get all cut up
2. Lock your car when you fill up your gas tank, especially if you leave your purse in the front seat
3. Braid your hair if it's going to be windy and you're outside. It'll save you from snarls
4. Don't spit from a moving car unless you're good at projectile spitting.
5. Make sure the window behind you is closed if you're going to spit
6. Use clorox wipes to clean around your toilet. Then your toilet will be clean and you can throw away the towel
7. Make homemade pudding if you have extra egg yolks 
8. Save every 5 minutes on Shutterfly so you don't have to retype the same labels over, and over, and over again
9. Don't be a jerk when you merge lanes. Nobody wants to see you drive past a huge line of cars waiting patiently, to merge at the front of the queue. 
10. Instead of buying scratchers/lotto tickets, put your money in a scratchers account. Then every time you put in money, you're actually contributing to your future.

There you are, now you have some real tips to think about.  I was going to do a tip of the day, but thought you could all benefit from these real tips in real time. Yow!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

How to unexpect the expected

Hollywood here I come. Well, not quite to Hollywood, but halfway there. Charles got into school at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo. It's Christmas at the Ward house. He's been working tirelessly toward that specific goal for 2+ years. Hot smash baby cakes! He's really excited and I'm pleased as punch for his great win.

On a totally different note, ConnecTV, my work is giving away a free trip to Hollywood. I haven't ever been there, nor have I ever gone to Disneyland. Charles hasn't either, so we might take a celebration trip once we've gotten settled in a more southwardly direction. Too bad I can't clip like crazy and win the trip from my work. I don't think that's allowed. Bummer.

Onward to the point of it all. The directive of this blog's title was inspired by the Bachelor episode in which Charlene drops out of the game. It happened two weeks ago, so it's quite old news. However, I still wanted to post about it. AND, it's my blog, so I'll do what I want.

Watching Charlene struggle with her feelings for Juan Pablo reminded me of the inner struggles I had during my courtship with Charles. When I think of how hard it was to choose Charles, and to fully realize the happiness I could have missed out on, I am filled with gratitude for his patience with me. I was on an emotional skateboard heading down the mountain as he calmly walked behind me, making sure I didn't fall off. What a trooper. A storm trooper if you will. I will.

When we choose how we live, we accept responsibility for our happiness and grief. It's a difficult burden to accept. When I expected marriage to epitomize misery, I was terrified to accept that deal. Except I've been married for 7 months and I'm still not miserable. Weird. So when I changed my perception of the marriage situation, I could accept the terms. Pop pop. Fizz fizz. Oh what a relief it is.

This, in turn, gives me great hopes for the misery of motherhood. I fully expect to throw up hourly with morning sickness for 9 months before it happens and then for my babies to get colic. Meanwhile I'll become better at everything, since trials are when you grow the most. I'm crossing my fingers for happiness when the babies come. It's a choice like all others. Plus, a sweet guy I know taught me once about unexpecting the expected and he's coming with me everywhere I go. Like a super power. 

Charles is my super power. With Don, he's been exercising every day. His super powerocity is becoming exponentially greater every day. Don't tell the spy network. I won't give him up to the spy rings of CA or even Earth. I shan't. He's my super power. I am linked to him and I have the ring to prove it. Picture credit.

I quite enjoy this State Farm commercial. 

I practiced on the piano keyboard on loan from Bon last week. I want to say thanks to Mrs. Sigler. She was, as our piano teacher, ultra super patient with all of us, even though we obviously never practiced, and we have all had the blessing of music training in our lives. Thank you Norma Jean and to my Mom, it was a long road, but I can play easy music. Easy peezy hymns for the win!

Also, strawberry cake is gross. Unexpected. I would have expected pink cake to be delicious.

New Show: Star Crossed. I've only watched the first episode. Nice.

Friday, February 14, 2014

The day of writing romantic oatmeal. No sugar allowed.

Cooler than snowboarding pants

Handy with a bag of chocolate chips

Artificial nothing, you're the real thing

Rock thrower

Licks ice cream


Sappy man

Listing of facts

I like when you read to me out loud.
I am obnoxious sometimes. Thanks for eating it up.
We're going to do our taxes.
I like your lasagna.
We have the same name. 
I like your cookies.
You remind me of the David statue.
I like when you brush my hair. 
You look like a person.
Sometimes you wear my socks. I know it's true.
You have ten toes.
I like when you exercise. Good job!
Your artistic side parallels mine. 

Romantic Poem

CAW and MEW sit at a transforming table
eating cans of beans and not watching cable.

They sit around and cause real ruckuses.
Their rug at home gets vacuumed semi-often and never fusses. 

Spectacular food is prepared every day.
Our dishes the soap dragon always does slay.

Tinder boxes light their candles.
Some of their doors have sticky handles.

MEW can't always get into the house, 
it's always surrounded by cats and grouse.

MEW will love CAW 'til after her head hair reaches her butt. 
CAW loves MEW more than Jabba the Hutt. 

Life in their house is mighty exciting, 
little animals they're always inviting. 

Shrews and voles. Crawdads galore.
The bread and cheese never grow spores.

It's a jolly place to live right now. 

Friday, February 7, 2014


I recently finished the book "Life of Pi". Then I watched the movie. I was not impressed. I don't know why, but I was disappointed. It's possible my imagination is so awesome the movie didn't do it justice- even though the special effects company was bankrupted by the end of production. Too bad. I don't know how I would have made it better, but somehow it was not all I had hoped it would be. I would definitely recommend the book. Sorry Emily.

Boston creme pie. Have you ever had a homemade boston cream pie? They are delicious. Charles and I made one a couple months ago. It was all sorts of right. 

Picture of Not a Boston Cream Pie compliments of Justin Page.
I found this recipe on the Food network website. It uses ten eggs, but it's pretty easy and quite delicious. Woot. I did not strain the pudding. I just put it on there. I'm low maintenance like that.

Boston Cream Pie

For the cake:
Unsalted butter, for the pan
1 1/4 cups cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup whole milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the pudding:
1 1/2 cups whole milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs plus 4 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
Pinch of salt

For the glaze:
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch-round cake pan. Fold a sheet of parchment paper into a square, then fold it in half into a triangle. Fold the triangle in half. Put the tip of the triangle in the center of the pan; trim the parchment, following the curve of the pan. Unfold the parchment circle and line the pan.

Make the cake: Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Beat the eggs and sugar in a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment on high speed until pale and tripled in volume, about 15 minutes. Gently fold in the flour mixture in two additions using a rubber spatula, scraping down the bowl.

Add the milk, vegetable oil and vanilla and beat with the mixer until combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer the pan to a rack and let cool 10 minutes, then invert the cake onto the rack. Invert again and cool completely.

Meanwhile, make the pudding: Heat the milk and vanilla in a medium saucepan over medium heat (do not boil). Whisk the whole eggs, egg yolks and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the cornstarch and salt and whisk vigorously until no lumps remain. Whisk about 1/4 cup of the hot milk mixture into the egg mixture, then gradually whisk in the remaining hot milk mixture.

Pour the egg-milk mixture into the saucepan and cook over low heat, whisking constantly, until thick and pudding-like, 10 to 15 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, using a rubber spatula to push the pudding through. Let cool slightly, stirring occasionally. Press plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pudding and refrigerate at least 2 hours.

Stick toothpicks around the side of the cake as a guide for cutting two even layers, then slice the cake in half horizontally with a long serrated knife.

Place the bottom half of the cake cut-side up on a platter. Top with the pudding, spreading it to about 1/4 inch from the edge. Carefully place the other cake half on top, cut-side down, pressing gently.

Make the glaze: Heat the chocolate, cream, vanilla and salt in a saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring, until melted and smooth, about 2 minutes. Let cool about 5 minutes, then pour over the cake and smooth with an offset spatula. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes or up to 4 hours before serving.

Chauli is exercising like a champ. He's quite inspirational. Every time I see him working out I start running inside my head. It's working me out quite nicely.

Maybe I'll break down and do it with him. Then I can eat more pie.