Wednesday, October 29, 2008

this is heartwarming

blithe had a hard time at school today. once we got home, she broke down and cried on the kitchen floor. i scooped her up and held her. her heart was broken, and it hurt.
i held her as she cried. then something wonderful happened. just typing this, i have tears in my eyes. (get a tissue, then come back and finish reading... got one? ok.)
asher came up to blithe, put his hand on her arm, and leaned over to hug her. he held her for a moment, then stood up and signed "sorry." it was breaking his heart to see his big sister so upset. then, he pointed and said "tin" ("train"), and looked back at blithe and said "glithe" ("blithe"), then pointed back at the train and said "tin" and back at blithe, "glithe." then he took her hand in his and led her over to the train, where he played with her.
with everything he's been through, he has learned compassion and mercy. what a special gift for all of us, to see this beauty in my boy. and tonight, what a special gift for blithe.
i don't care what any doctors tell me, asher has the biggest heart of anyone i know.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

For Staci... and anyone else who wants to read this, really

Yesterday i wrote about trying new things. Well, today, I practiced something "new-ish"... cooking for one. I don't have money right now to eat out (because, you know, I've been so wealthy in the past! Lol), otherwise i'd have gotten myself some sushi or A&W or a nice salad (quite a variety, no?). so, i looked in the fridge. I was originally going to have some carrot soup, but decided against it for some reason, i still don't know why. But... i did find eggs and a bunch of other goodies, so i threw something together...

An omelette!

Staci asked what was in it, and i know how much she likes my recipes, so here it is:


2 eggs

Some milk

A couple mushrooms

Some ham

Some cheddar cheese, grated

Salt and pepper to taste


Crack the eggs into a bowl, add some milk (this makes the eggs fluffy!), and salt and pepper. Beat.

Put a small frying pan on the stove. Turn on the stove to, say, medium-ish heat, and put some butter in the pan. Watch the butter melt, or grate the cheese. Whatever. It's up to you, i guess, what you do with your time.

Pour the egg mixture into the frying pan. I guess you could chop the mushrooms now. Whatever.

Once the eggs are looking almost done, add the rest of the ingredients. Watching cheese melt can be fun, so i'd recommend you do this now. (oh, the things i do to occupy myself when the kids are gone... oh, yeah, i'm just that cool. Lol)

When it's all done cooking, put it on your plate and enjoy!

There you go, stac, my super-dee-duper omelette recipe. Hope you like it! lol

Monday, October 27, 2008

Garlic and Ranch Turkey Burgers

I've decided that I need to really work on expanding my dinnertime repertoire. I'd like to add some variety, instead of making my usual "go-to's" for supper. Frankly, I'm getting tired of the same things week after week. Not that I don't like my usuals, but really, one can only have pasta with alfredo sauce or lentil casserole so many times, you know. So, I've been making good use of the internet lately.

The other day, I received a lovely newsletter from the lovely people over at, inviting me to check out their newest recipes. One of these recipes was for, yup, you guessed it, Garlic and Ranch Turkey Burgers. The recipe looked pretty good, and very easy, so I decided to give it a whirl. And because you know I'm all about sharing the minutiae of my life on my blogs, here is the first recipe i tried. (i will be posting more recipes as i try them.)


1lb ground turkey

1 (1 oz) pkg ranch dressing mix

1 egg

3 cloves garlic, minced

¼ cup Worcestershire sauce

Seasoned salt, pepper to taste


  1. Preheat outdoor grill for medium-high heat, and lightly oil grate.
  2. Knead together the turkey, ranch mix, egg, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper in a bowl until evenly combined; divide into 4 equal portions and form into patties.
  3. Cook on preheated grill about 5 min per side for well done.


This was AWESOME!!!

If you haven't worked with ground turkey before, a warning: this recipe will look wet. Very wet. Don't worry; it all works out in the end. Just go with it. Also, I cooked my burgers on the stove instead of the grill (I was afraid the patties would fall through the grate. If you try yours on the BBQ, let me know how it worked for you). This recipe was delicious, and stupidly easy to make. I will definitely be adding it to my menu on a more regular (but not necessarily frequent) basis. And the turkey is nice, and certainly healthier than beef all the time. I dig it, and you will, too, I think.

Sorry there's no picture. We gobbled them (no pun intended... ok, it was intended, cheesy, I know) before I could snap a pic. But they're yummy, so try them. And take a picture. And share it with the rest of us, if you feel so inclined. J

Friday, October 24, 2008

Carrot soup... by me! :)

i tried something new today... i have never made soup before. i've always wanted to, but i was afraid. ok, well, i'll be honest. i made soup once before... but, well, it didn't work out so well. that was years ago now, and it's taken me until today to try again.
well, after seeing all the wonderful produce i got at the farm this week, especially all the carrots, i was inspired. i LOVE autumn veggie soups. so, i thought i would try one out. and the reviews are in....
here's my (big) recipe:
14 carrots, sliced, diced, whatever. make sure the pieces are small enough, so they won't take so long to cook.
4 potatoes, cubed
1 sweet potato, cubed
1/2 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic (but i really like garlic. i don't think you'd need to put that much in if you didn't want to)
water (enough to cover plus a bit more. sorry, i didn't measure. i just poured the water in straight from the tap)
butter. i don't know, a couple tablespoons worth? sorry again, i should have said earlier, i never measure. anything. it's why i don't bake. but i digress...
cut up the veggies and toss them in the pot.
pour in the water.
bring to a boil, then simmer on medium until the veggies are tender.
add the butter. stir it all up.
blend until smooth.
i liked this soup. and the "recipe" made quite a bit. i filled 2 1L jars, a 500ml jar, and a couple smaller jam jars (for myself, on days when the kids are with ed). i also got about half of another 1L jar, which we'll enjoy likely on sunday for lunch.
so, there you go. my first attempt at soup, and it's good! and so, i thought i would leave you with a fitting quotation this evening, since we're in a soup-y frame of mind at the moment:
Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.
- Ludwig von Beethoven

Hamburger Stew/Soup a la Annie Brown

ok, i'm totally stealing this recipe from annie. mostly i'm just posting this here, because i'm at her house now, and i don't have anywhere to copy it at the moment, so here we go:

1 lb ground beef
1 pkg taco seasoning mix
1 (10.75 oz) can condensed tomato soup
3-3/4 cups water
1 cup chopped onion
4 carrots, chopped
3 potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 stalk celery, chopped (optional, thank God! nothing more disgusting than cooked celery)
1 (15 oz) can corn or peas

1. in a large pot over medium heat, saute the ground beef. add the taco seasoning, soup, water, onions, carrots, potatoes, celery and beans. reduce heat to low. cover and simmer about 30 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
2. just before serving, thicken with corn starch to more of a stew consistency.

now, here's those extra little tips that are never in recipes, but that you always get when you talk to the cook herself. so, here we go:

  • use frozen veggies, not canned. easier, healthier, yummier.
  • really, just add whatever veggies you have on hand. peppers, green beans, whatever you've got, throw it in.
  • brown the beef ahead of time, like when you bring it home. toss it in the crockpot all day, turning it over every couple hours. just toss it in on high; it's an all day thing, but if it makes things easier in the long run, i'm all for it. once it's done, toss it in some ziploc bags and freeze it. then when you go to make the stew, you just toss in the meat already browned. makes the whole process go faster.

there you go. i'm going to give it a whirl in the next few days, and i'll let you know how it turned out. although annie says her family loves it, so i'm guessing mine will like it, too, since her kids are pickier eaters than mine. :)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Fairmeadow Farm CSA

i joined a CSA (community supported agriculture) today. every two weeks, i go to a farm outside of Sparta, and pick up vegetables. the top picture shows you the amounts i get of each of the vegetables.

i should tell you that there is still room at the farm, so if you're interested in getting lots of good organic vegetables, grown locally, it's still possible. in fact, you would get a double share next time.

i'm so excited. i think tomorrow i'm going to make carrot soup for the first time ever! yay!!!!

Friday, October 17, 2008

"First" day of school

blithe and bram, after their first day at school.
bram, tired and a little shell-shocked after his first day at JK. he had a wonderful time, though at this point he was still somewhat overwhelmed by the whole experience.
bram made a friend who helped him at school.

what a day. i don't know quite how i feel about the whole thing. i'm glad they're enjoying it so much. blithe has informed me that i did, in fact, make the right decision, so i guess that helps. they are both really happy to be at school. bram has decided to learn to put on his own shoes by himself, because "that will make Mrs B- so happy." oh, yeah, it's already starting.

so, there you have it. their first day of school.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Oh, yeah, today was fantastic. Ugh.

I got no sleep last night. Asher wasn't sleeping very soundly, and kept tossing and turning. Which meant that his tube kept kinking. Which meant that his feed couldn't go through. Which meant that his alarm kept going off. Which meant that i had to get up.

A lot.

The longest chunk of sleep i got was an hour and a half.

Yeah. Not cool.

Needless to say, i'm tired today.

I went for my second workout at Curves today. It was good, lots of fun. But afterward i was tired. And sweaty. Yuck.

Then i came home.

To my messy house.

And my rambunctious children (including my 3.5-year-old who didn't go to sleep till 11 last night. Yeah).

And a sandbox still full of water and tank engines (but no immunodeficient, medically fragile toddler today).

And my front steps still needing to be repaired.

You can see where this is heading, i'm sure.

This evening, my Facebook status says, "Heather is drained, exhausted and feeling like the world's worst mother." Wanna know why? Ok, here's the list:

  1. I'm tired. So i'm cranky. I can't think of a single person today i didn't yell and/or snap at. Oh, yeah, i was at my most delightful today.
  2. I registered my kids at the public school nearby today. They start there next week. There are several points to this one:
    1. I feel like a failure, because i just couldn't do homeschooling. I want to. But right now, i just can't. I feel like i'm giving up. And i hate that.
    2. The kids are excited about starting school. Which should be a good thing, right? I mean, i should be happy that they're rolling with this change so well. Except that i feel terrible, because i feel like they think i'm a bad teacher and they're glad i won't be teaching them anymore.
    3. There are all kinds of viruses and bugs at public schools. Which blithe and bram will likely bring home. To my toddler with half a heart and no t-cells. So it puts asher at risk.
    4. Homeschooling has always been my dream. I'm letting go of my dream.
    5. I'm looking forward to time away from my kids. So i can finally get stuff done around the house. Like purging, organizing, painting, repairing, dusting, dishes, tidying, vacuuming, sweeping, laundry... do i really need to go on? The point is i'm happy that they'll be out of the house for the day. What kind of a mother does that make me?
    6. I need them out of the house so that i can deal with lawyers and bank/mortgage people, as i divorce their father.
  3. Last night i ordered a refill of one of asher's reflux meds. Lansoprazole. Yeah, it's still at shoppers. And all the kids are in bed. And i'm the only adult. So i can't go get it.
  4. The house is a mess, but all i want to do right now is curl up on the couch with a case bottle glass of wine and a book.
  5. For lunch today we had pizza pockets and Doritos, and for supper we had A&W.
  6. On our walk tonight, i actually told the kids to stop using their imagination and talking about tank engines. But seriously, when blithe started talking about somehow getting Pinchy off of Diesel 10 with some weird trick that involves throwing sticks and yelling "Yeah! We got Pinchy!" in the street, honestly, i thought i was going to cry.
  7. I've lost blithe's birth certificate. And mine, for that matter. But i needed hers to register her at school today. So now i have to drive to London to get our family doctor to fill out a form that says that yes, in fact, blithe was born, and then we can send her to school. Blithe, that is, not our family doctor. I'm pretty sure Tracy's done school.
  8. The stuff from supper (which was, you'll remember, A&W) is still on the table. But blithe still had some chocolate milk left, and i just finished it off.

Ok, i think that's about it. Oh, no, wait, it isn't. Today blithe told me that when i yell at them, she gets scared and nervous and doesn't love me as much. And another time, she said she doesn't want to live with me anymore.

I know these days happen sometimes when you're tired and therefore overwhelmed. Most of these things would never bother me on a normal day. Well, except blithe's comments at the end there. On the other hand, on a normal day, i wouldn't yell at them, so that wouldn't have even come up. But really, it was an all-around horrible day around here.

But at least they're all asleep now. Or at least, asher is asleep and blithe and bram are quiet. So maybe i should just curl up in the corner under the covers on the couch and dream of someone to rescue me and take me away from this life drink myself into a stupor read a book.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

hi everyone,

i'm writing to let you know that edwin and i have now separated permanently and will be getting a divorce. this has been a long, painful and sorrowful journey for each of us, but in the end, we are parting amicably and peacefully.

we still care for each other deeply, and will be supportive to each other for the rest of our lives. we continue to be best of friends. but we also now realize that we make better friends than spouses.

in all of this, the children are doing well.there is now, at long last, peace between us, and this will help the children.

i really appreciate your prayers and support during this difficult time, and would ask that you continue to pray for us, as the road ahead during the next while will be stressful for all of us.

thank-you so much for your understanding. if you wish to talk, please feel free to contact me.


Sunday, October 5, 2008

Bram, the King of Non-Sequiturs

bram and i were cuddling a bit at the park this afternoon. we were chatting.

me: you sure love to cuddle, don't you?

bram: yes, and i have skin.

ok. whatever.

Why I Write Here

i like this blog. this is where i write about homelife. my kids, my pets, recipes, natural cleaning products, gardening, cool finds... that's what i write about here. this is the hands-on part of my personal journey. i'm reclaiming myself, a self i lost in a hospital somewhere, among all the meds, plastic, waste and complexity that comes with Special Needs parenting. i crave simplicity, and this is my journey to create it for my family and me.

i'm prolific! check out my other blogs!

you like me! you REALLY like me!!

i'm on facebook! add me! :)


My Simple Life | Creative Commons Attribution- Noncommercial License | Dandy Dandilion Designed by Simply Fabulous Blogger Templates