She Is Merida

And she’ll be shootin’ fer her OWN hand.

(She really says “I’ll be shootin’ fer my own plans”, but whatever. She’s 3. SHE’S GOING TO BE FAMOUS. WATCH OUT HOLLYWOOD. Here comes Nellie.)

Bobby Flay Cookbook Giveaway

 

Do you find yourself getting bored with the same recipes over and over? I definitely do. A typical “menu planning” list of mine looks like this:
Monday: Turkey chili
Tuesday: Beef and pepper soup
Wednesday: Spaghetti
Thursday: ???????
Friday: ????????????????????????????
Saturday: Chicken nuggets  hot dogs  Chinese Takeout
Sunday: Gummy bears off the floor

I struggle to find new and fun and tasty recipes to cook for my family. Bobby Flay’s “From My Kitchen to Your Table” offers over 125 new recipes to try. Bobby Flay is known best for his roles on several cooking TV shows, most famously the show Iron Chef. He owns several different restaurants. “From My Kitchen to Your Table” is full of rich photos and exciting recipes. The recipes are a little on the more complex side (like Roasted Turkey with Pomegranate Sauce and Wild Rice-Goat Cheese Dressing), so if you’re feeling fiesty and up for a challenge in the kitchen you definitely want to check this book out. It’s a little bit of an older cookbook (published in 1998) but it’s still definitely one for your collection.

Want to get your hands on a copy? You’re in luck. Stockland is giving away one copy of the cookbook to two readers, and entering is simple!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Snag yourself a cookbook to add to your bookshelf OR to give as a Christmas gift to a friend who loves to cook!
Good luck!

This post was brought to you by Stockland. Stockland is Australia’s largest diversified property group, with a range of home, land and retail developments across Australia. From real estate in the Northern suburbs of Melbourne to house and land packages in NSW, there is sure to be a place to find or build your perfect home. And, as a leading sustainable organisation, Stockland’s developments are designed to enhance the environment – not to spoil it. Stockland gives your family a place to truly call home – a place where your family can live and grow.

Christmas Anxiety

 

Thanksgiving has come and gone, and now the Christmas season is officially in full swing. I have mixed feelings about this time of year. I am looking forward to seeing my daughter experience the holidays, and I can’t wait until Christmas morning to see her open her presents. She sort of understood Christmas last year, but this year she is excited. She loves our Christmas tree and even picked out her very own ornament to hang on a branch. It’s a Barbie in a hideous pink dress, and she will kneel down in front of it and gaze at it lovingly, whispering sweet nothings into its plastic ears.

I am excited for Christmas, and I am also dreading the sad milestones that Christmas brings. Today marked what I guess is the first milestone; today would have been my mother’s 61st birthday. It also marks 1 year since I saw my mom for the last time before she went into the hospital. The visit was strange. In hindsight I understand a little better. At the time I thought she was just on heavy pain pills (which she may have been) but I realize now just how sick she was. On her birthday last year, she had little less than a month to live.

I think that I’ve been dealing with the anxiety I’m feeling over the anniversary of her death in subtle, almost subconscious ways. I’ve been feeling very self-conscious and sensitive and also easily annoyed. I have been feeling easily left out and just kind of glum on and off. It’s been a while since I’ve felt much of anything regarding my mom’s death, so it was hard to recognize the source of these feelings at first.

I guess I just need to take the good with the bad and accept my emotions and feelings as they come.

Dragons, Christmas, and American Horror Story

Good morning! It’s been a while since my last update where, in a Benadryl-induced half-stupor, I blogged about a dragon living in my throat.

I am happy to say that the dragon has been slain. A few days after I wrote that post I bit the bullet and went to a walk-in clinic, where they diagnosed me with a virus and an ear infection. They gave me antibiotics and sent me home. I am now at the tail end of my antibiotics and can safely say I never want to take them ever again. They’ve upset my stomach and made me nauseous for almost ten days straight. EFF. THAT.

What else is new? Nellie’s feeling much better, though she’s congested again. I’ve been trying to stay on top of it by keeping her on a decongestant. I hate to do that because I’m not thrilled with the idea of drugging her all the time, but I’m afraid if the mucous builds back up she’ll end up with another ear infection. INNER TURMOIL.

So Thanksgiving is next week, which blows my mind. It’s hard to believe that it’s that time of year again. I’ve been having a lot of mixed feelings about the upcoming holiday season. Considering what a hot mess last Christmas was, I am anxious about what sort of feelings and memories the sights and sounds of the holidays will bring back. In case you’re a relatively new reader, last Christmas my mother was admitted to the hospital on the 22nd of December. We had to admit her to hospice on Christmas Day. She was dead by the 28th. I had a very conflicted and tumultuous relationship with her, which made the whole thing very difficult to process. You can read my experiences from that week by clicking on “In Her Time of Dying” on the top bar of my blog, if you’re interested.

So that’s what’s been going on with us lately. Oh! I forgot to mention that Josh and I have become COMPLETELY obsessed with the first season of the show American Horror Story. It’s amazing and terrifying and creepy and WATCH IT NOW, is basically what I am saying.

That’s all for now. Happy Hump Day!

This Post Makes No Sense.

Hi! So remember when I blogged the other day about the marathon sickness that had gripped my household? Well, Nellie’s croup is better and she’s waking up less and sleeping better. Hooray!

The not so great news? I’ve contracted some sort of horrible virus from hell and am sick. No fever anymore, just a lot of stuffy congestion, general fatigue, swollen glands and oh yeah – THERE IS A FUCKING DRAGON LIVING IN MY THROAT.

I’m not joking, guys. My throat hurts so bad, it’s like there’s a Hungarian Horntail waiting to defend its golden egg in the Triwizard Tournament in there. And I’ve tried everything to kill the bastard. Pain medicine. Cold medicine. Hot tea. Warm soup. Ice cream. Gargling salt waters. Sacrificing goats. EVERYTHING. The only time my throat feels like it’s NOT on fire is the precise moment something warm, or something cold is being swallowed by me.

THIS SUCKS, Y’ALL. It is almost 1 in the morning while I’m writing this. I’m on the couch in the living room so my poor husband, who has to get up and work tomorrow, doesn’t have to hear my constant shifting and getting up and down. I finally resorted to taking a full dose of Bendaryl, which I never do because I’m very sensitive to it, in the hopes that it will render me unconscious and by proxy, render the fire breathing creature in my throat unconscious as well. I will probably regret the Benadryl in the morning, as it always seems to make me feel funny and hungover the next day.

I’m not even sure why I’m writing this. It’s probably the Benadryl talking. I’m going to try and pass out. FUCK YOU, THROAT DRAGON.