Archives for April 2008

I’m Ready To Be Bored For Awhile

Right now I’m in Panera for the second time today. I was here for the first time when I met my friend Leigh for lunch, which was a luxurious hour of quickly devouring a chicken Caesar salad so that I could spend the rest of my lunch telling Alex to a) quit jumping on the chair b) quit pulling on the blinds c) quit interrupting, please quit interrupting, it would help Mama a whole bunch, sugar, if there could just be NO MORE INTERRUPTING.

Finally I just handed him my cell phone and said, “Do with it what you will. Punch buttons to your heart’s content. Just don’t hit the green button and we’ll be fine.”

And my cell phone idea was clearly brilliant, because as a result of it Leigh and I had EIGHT WHOLE MINUTES of quality adult conversation. What a treasure.

After lunch A and I made a quick trip to the library, ran home so that I could change clothes, went BACK by the little man’s school because I forgot to drop off some stuff the first AND second times I was there today (it was our third! exciting! trip! to the schoolhouse!), then headed over to my friend NK’s house so my boy and her girls could play while I sat on the sofa and stared off into space.

Oh, I kid. I’ll have you know that I managed to form a few words and maybe even some sentences.

So now A and his daddy are enjoying some time together, and Mama here has retreated to the well-lit, sufficiently Wi-Fi’d haven that is Panera. And I plan to sit here until I’m tired of sitting. Or until I’m tired of writing. Or until I’m just plain tired.

Hallelujah.

How are y’all?

American Idol – Top 5

Oh, how I adore it when we get to the phase of the competition where everyone is singing two songs. My level of happiness if off the charts, I tell you, because THIS IS ALL VERY EXCITING.

I will try to calm down a bit before I start talking about the actual performances.

I JUST NEED TO GET THE CAPITAL LETTERS OUT OF MY SYSTEM FIRST.

AND ALSO: I NEED ME ONE OF NEIL DIAMOND’S SPANGLY SHIRTS.

WOOT.

All better now.

Jason Castro – “Forever In Blue Jeans” – This is not one of my favorite songs – and I think the lyrics are sort of dated – but it was good to see Jason back in his comfort zone with guitar in hand. I’d have to consult the honorable FryDaddy to know for sure, but it sounded to me like he never found a range he was comfortable with in this song. And honestly, it was kind of boring. Perfectly nice – but kind of boring.

“September Morn” – HEY. WHAT THE HECK WAS GOING ON WITH PAULA EVALUATING THIS PERFORMANCE BEFORE IT EVEN HAPPENED? I mean, I know she could have taken notes during rehearsal or whatever, but I do think it was unfair for her to pretty much tell the world, “What’s coming up isn’t going to be very good” before we even saw it. That being said, Jason seemed really uncomfortable, and part of me wonders if he’s not ready to fly, fly away from the Idol coop. I’m just sayin’.

David Cook – “I’m Alive” – He’s just good, y’all. Even when I don’t love the songs he sings, I love to hear him sing them. Because he can sing anything and put an original twist on it. The end.

“All I Really Need Is You” – Well done with the thoughtful half-grin at the beginning of the song, Mr. Cook. And as far as the actual song, he delivered once again. He’s consistent, original and super smart about his performances. Love him.

Brooke White – “I’m A Believer” – Is it me, or has Brooke seemed really nervous the last few weeks? She seemed sort of hesitant at the beginning of this song, and like Jason, it felt like the song wasn’t in her range. I kept thinking of “The Partridge Family” when she was singing – and she didn’t seem comfortable at all.

“I Am, I Said” – I think Brooke is totally at home behind a piano, and I actually really liked this performance. The first part of the song especially came across as totally sincere – I even had goosebumps. Total rebound on Brooke’s part. Good for her.

David Archuleta – “Sweet Caroline” – For some reason this whole performance felt dated to me, almost like Bobby Brady was trying to win a talent show so he could replace the family portrait that Jan hit with her bike when she wasn’t wearing her glasses.

“America” – Eh. I wanted to like it. I feel like I should have liked it. But I just didn’t like it. I’m sorry.

Syesha Mercado – “Hello Again” – Okay, THIS was a modern take on a Neil Diamond song, which is exactly what Jason, Brooke and David A. were missing in their first songs tonight. I don’t think she hit it out of the park, but it was a solid double. And what in the sam hill am I doing using baseball metaphors? I have absolutely no explanation.

“Thank The Lord For The Nighttime” – LOVED this arrangement – it felt retro, not dated, and yes, there is a difference. I thought Syesha’s performance was fun, but I’m not sure it was her strongest…sometimes the song felt a little big for her. BUT, she was having fun, and for that reason alone it was enjoyable to watch.

Should go: Based on tonight? Jason.

Will go: I have no idea. I just know that it won’t be either of the Davids.

Best of the night: David Cook

If you’d like to add your AI post to the mix, just add the link to your specific post (not your general URL) below.

Thanks, internets!

A Desperate Cry For Help

Okay, internets.

Melanie, Travis and I are recording a podcast this afternoon.

So far we have all of one potential topic. ONE. UNO.

And granted, we usually don’t have some fancy outline with Roman numerals and stuff (oh, make no mistake: Roman numerals are VERY fancy), nor do we try to be, you know, EDUCATIONAL, but it’s always nice to have some conversational springboards.

So.

Does anyone have any lighthearted questions you’d like for us to answer? Something along the lines of TV / music / family silliness / movies / general trivia / just please oh please nothing involving science or history?

You have two hours to complete this mission. Because we’re recording at 3 o’clock central.

Fire away.

Sometimes Twitter Teaches You Things

This is very, very cool.

(link via Anne on Twitter)

This Makes Me Somewhat Uncomfortable

I just found this email in my inbox:

Hi, boomama.

eDiets (eDiets) is now following your updates on Twitter.

You may follow eDiets as well by clicking on the “follow” button.

Best,
Twitter

What? As if I don’t have enough pressure?

And now I have somebody called eDiets “following” me?

I feel that this is horribly unfair.

And also: I guess I’d better put down the cream cheese.

Look! I’m Cooking! With Real-Live Food!

So truth be told I haven’t been very diligent in the menu-planning department lately, and more often than not I feel like I’m winging it at suppertime. It doesn’t help that I am perfectly content to eat Cheez-Its or a scoop of peanut butter or a bowl of cereal and then consider supper checked off my list, but I do understand that there are two other people in this house who appreciate hot food.

Well, really there’s just one other person in this house who appreciates hot food. Because if left to his own devices, the five year-old would pretty much eat Oreos with a side of Cheetos three times a day and then snack on Skittles.

Which is why the preparation of actual meals with actual vegetables is fairly important around these parts.

Anyway, yesterday I actually sat down and planned what I was going to cook this week (remember when I used to do that? here on the blog? oh-so-faithfully? yeah. good times.), and I remembered a casserole that I love but haven’t cooked recently because I sort of burned out on casseroles about six months ago.

Can you tell that I haven’t really been that into cooking lately?

You may have picked up on that.

But this particular casserole is oh-so-delicious – and it’s a good way to work some asparagus into a meal since, strangely enough, kids tend to like green vegetables better when they’re covered with a yummy cheesy sauce. You can use canned or fresh asparagus – just make sure to boil it ahead of time if you use the fresh stuff.

And this recipe will feed at least ten people – so you should have plenty of leftovers.

Unless there are ten people in your family.

And if that is the case, then hats off to whomever is doing the cooking because, well, YOU ROCK.

Chicken and Asparagus Casserole

1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 cup butter (you can use a little less if you’d like. I say go big or go home.)
1 (8 ounce) jar sliced mushrooms, drained
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 (5 ounce) can evaporated milk
8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon Accent
2 tablespoons chopped pimiento, drained
6 chicken breasts, cooked and cut into bite-size pieces
2 (15 ounce) cans green asparagus spears
1/2 cup slivered almonds

Preheat oven to 350. In a skillet, saute’ onion butter until tender. Add remaining ingredients except chicken, asparagus and almonds. In a lightly greased 13 x 9-inch baking dish, layer half of chicken, 1 can asparagus and half of sauce. Repeat layers, ending with sauce. Top with almonds. Bake 30 minutes or until bubbly. Do not add liquid, even if it looks dry. Freezes well.

Serve with rice, baked potato or baked sweet potato. Or, you know, beets. Or parsnips. Whatever suits your fancy.

By the way, the leftovers are really good as filling for quesadillas or as stuffing for hot baked potatoes. Personally, I like to reheat the casserole in a big ole skillet and let the cheesy part get sort of crispy around the edges only I can’t talk about that anymore or I’m going to go into the kitchen and pan fry some shredded cheese, just as the good Lord intended.

Regardless, I love it when leftovers are versatile and make you feel like you’re getting an entirely different meal. Because then you get credit for cooking something new and different without having to cook anything new and different. It’s a thing of beauty, my friends.

Enjoy, y’all!