you should cook more often.

Three weeks gluten free.

And you know what?

It’s not so bad.

I really like to cook. Thankfully I know how to cook. And even better I have had the opportunity to have my new Frigidaire Professional Series Range and Microwave to help me along.

When I eat glutenous things now, I get an almost immediate tummyache. But even more interesting? Bread doesn’t even taste good anymore. I’ve tried twice. Yuck.

I’d say for every three tasty gluten free dinners I’ve made there’s been one big fat fail. Like my whole “I’LL LEARN TO MAKE JAPANESE FOOD! JAPANESE FOOD HAS HARDLY ANY GLUTEN!”

Yeah. Japanese food isn’t something you just start cooking. Dried fish flakes? Kelp? Cabbage pancakes? Yeah, Japanese food isn’t for the desperately hungry. Maybe I’ll try again in a year.

I’ve eaten enough asparagus that uh, it’s really obvious that I’ve eaten a lot of asparagus.

When cut properly, leeks look a lot like toenail clippings.

There’s a Japanese root vegetable that looks like semen when it’s grated.

And quinoa? Yeah, quinoa still looks like tiny little condoms.

See?

quinoa. aka teeny little condoms.

But by far my biggest accomplishment in this whole gluten free cooking thing is this thing with quinoa that I came up with after modifying another nasty looking recipe.

1 cup quinoa

2 cups broth/stock (or 2 cups water with 2 teaspoons bullion, I usually do beef, but chicken or vegetable would be just as tasty.)

Cook the quinoa in the broth until it’s done (aka looks like little tiny condoms.)

1 medium onion finely chopped.

2 cups mushrooms, stems removed, coarsely chopped.

Saute them in a bit of olive oil and garlic until they the onions are translucent.

the makings of gluten free goodness.

Combine the cooked quinoa and vegetables together and add a half cup of heavy cream, a bit of either dried or fresh thyme and parsley. Add salt and pepper to your personal taste.

Nom nom.

final gluten free goodness.

This has no meat and yet Cody thinks it’s delicious and wonders why we can’t have it more often.

Eating out for now has lost its luster. I like being home. I like buying and seeing and knowing what is going into my food.

I have started making as many things as possible from scratch. Salad dressings and whipped cream for example.

I used to always make fun of my sister for being all crunchy and healthy.

Now I’m one of those people.

I can taste fake stuff in food, well, maybe not taste it, but food with fake stuff in it doesn’t taste as good.

Somewhere in LA Jessica Gottlieb is screaming all sorts of “I TOLD YOU SO” obscenities at her screen.

In my grandest of ambitions I’m going to try and post a weeks worth of gluten free recipes that are easy to make and actually taste good.

Just try it for a week.

Have your kids help you cook. Gather everyone around the table for dinner.

Promise you’ll notice a difference after a week, even if it’s not the one you were expecting.

I wrote this review while participating in a Test Drive Campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Frigidaire and received a Frigidaire Range/Microwave to facilitate my review.

she has an old lady name.

Cody and I sometimes joke that we are parents to an elderly woman in a five year old body.

She hates loud noises.

She hates candy.

She hates merriment in general.

One Year. Hated Cupcakes.

“How dare you present me with such rubbish! Don’t you know who I am?”

She always has to have a blanket on her lap.

Kids drive her crazy.

Loud music? Can’t stand it.

I gave birth to an elderly woman.

Darn you kids and your cheerful gallivanting!

I took her to the playground today where a bunch of high schoolers on spring break were running amok. Bad words, disrespect for each other and the worst, ignorance to the little kids that were there first.

I silently stewed in my brain. Considered calling their parents. Following them home. Videotaping them.

Bah. They were jerks.

And then one almost knocked my kid off a ladder because he was too busy trying to beat the tar out of another kid.

I went crazy lady loud. If I’ve ever experienced Mama Bear emotions it was in that moment.

All twenty teenagers went dead silent and still, staring open mouthed at the shouty lady poised at the side of the playground.

No one apologized, a few of the girls told the boys to watch out for the little kids.

But for the most part they could have cared less.

I think my generation was kind of the end of the whole “respect your elders” group.

I know I can’t control everything.

But I refuse to let Addie grow up to be a jerk.

She will respect herself.

She will respect others.

She will care for those smaller than her, and hold in high regard those bigger than her.

I’m hoping I’m not alone in this. That other parents out there want the same for their kids. That these “old fashioned values” will again become the norm.

That when Addie plays on a playground with her friends in 11 years she won’t be looked at like a dork for making sure the little kids are okay. That she won’t be ashamed to stand up for herself when others around begin using words that no self respecting person, especially a child, would use.

That she will make modesty cool. That she will take pride in her virtue. That others will look to her as an example.

Adelaide means “of exalted nature.”

I hope she exudes that and more.

I know I can’t keep her innocent forever. But oh, how I treasure her innocence now.

I take it as my challenge and my privilege to raise a young lady.

Even if she already acts like an old grumpy one.

Crazy hair.

if he ignores them, they still come. so he lies.

Today is the 5th anniversary of Cody’s 27th birthday.

Meaning Cody is 27.

Again.

For the 5th year in a row.

Happy birthday liar dude.

I got you a nap.

crapped out after court

You’re welcome.

hideous lovely.

According to magazines we are supposed to believe that is is beautiful. That this is how relationships are. That lying around in a bra on the carpet staring wistfully into your partners nipple with your pants undone is not only practical, but that THIS is how romance is done.

Pffbt. This is a relationship. This. This right here is a marriage and a story and love. This is happiness. This is romance. (This is also known as Mishi and her Mike.)

According to magazines this is how young beautiful people hang out after work. You know, in leopard print. At they gym. In heels.

This is friends hanging out. This is what real people do. And I’d much rather be here than up there. (Really, this is my friend Shireen. And I’d take her any day over just about any one in leopard print.)

Reality television and celebrities are showing a whole new generation that marriage is a joke. That it is old fashioned, a waste of time and will make you utterly miserable.

Tell her that. (Her is Katie.)

Best friend in Hollywood? Yeah. We’ve all seen how THAT works out.

This is a little better. (This is her and her.)

How to get all three of you in a photo with your camera, find something shiny.

Having kids? What a waste of time.  Look how miserable they are. (They are Becky and her baby.)

A long time ago I was told to stop reading beauty magazines. That they will just make me feel fat, ugly and utterly ordinary.

So I stopped reading beauty magazines and started reading your blogs.

And you guys? Are the epitome of beauty.

Thank you. To every single one of you.

(And thank you thank you for sharing your pictures with me.)

on feelings of entitlement.

Cody works for a law firm that offers nary a single benefit besides a salary.

We do not have life insurance, we do not have health insurance, we do not have a retirement fund.

After last night not only do we still not have health insurance, we now get to pay a penalty for not having health insurance.

It’s easy to get caught up in entitlement.

Cody is an attorney, he does have a salary and a job, something to be very thankful for in this economy and in the state of Indiana in particular.

So this round of health care reform didn’t go so well for a lot of us. But it did go well for a lot of other people. I am going to be happy for them and work to make sure my turn to be considered is next.

This is turning people ugly. It’s setting off feelings of entitlement.

I’d love to march into Cody’s office and ask if they like having more than one child. Tell them that I’d love to have a second one but because they’re too busy keeping their fists wrapped tight around all their money and not providing something as common sense as health care…

It’s easy to get caught up in the drama of it all.

We’re okay. We’re healthy. We have a future together and we have each other.

We have a roof over our heads and every Sunday we get to go to the church we want to go to, sing the songs we choose to sing and pray the way we want to pray.

I can write all of this because I have an American right to.

Cody chose to become a lawyer. He chose to go to school and with school came student loans.

There’s people out there who get what a difficult situation this is, choosing to gain higher education and with it gain higher student loans.

There’s others who think that as soon as you get your diploma you also get a really awesome life and a six figure salary.

I’m sick of being pitted against other people playing the “I deserve this because I…” game.

I’m guilty of playing it.

Yelling at each other and making snide passive aggressive comments isn’t going to get us anywhere good. It never has before and it certainly won’t now.

Being happy for each other when things go right and helping each other out when things go wrong because we’re human and we’re all in this together will take us farther as a society than any bill in Washington ever could.

beauty and the burnt crap at the bottom of the pot.

Emily and I are working on something EPIC with our new appliances.

She received the same Frigidaire range and microwave to review.

Call me crazy but Emily strikes me as the type that would use her oven as storage and the range as a surface for sorting mail. Or maybe a good place to hold pizza boxes.

Her exact words from January 5, 2010?

I seriously should not be allowed to operate a stove. Or a microwave. And especially not a crock pot. -Emily “I am officially and idiot.

Part of you will die when you read the above linked post.

THAT WAS INNOCENT FOOD. That she “cooked” and KILLED.

Being a generous soul I am going to attempt to teach her to cook (not kill) at least one thing from one state away.

And you guys? After our first few discussions? I have my work cut out for me.

The only reason I *think* I can do this?

Because I know she has a good consistent oven and microwave.

So if she screws up? It’s her screwing up, not an old dumpy oven or microwave leading her astray.

Just as research I have tried on purpose to ruin food on and in my new range and microwave.

IT CAN NOT BE DONE.

You hear me Emily?

The simmer burner simmered butter and cream into a perfectly melted caramel sauce.

The convection setting perfectly crisped my shortbread. (Which to be honest I thought was going to be a giant fail-the dough was totally off-but it was DIVINE. You know, as long as I took an allergy pill first.)

And have I ever mentioned that the microwave has a MELT CHOCOLATE BUTTON? And a SOFTEN CREAM CHEESE BUTTON? It also has a melt butter and soften ice cream setting (that actually work.)

Oh you guys. I could go on and on.

And if attempting to teach Emily that spaghetti sauce isn’t supposed to come from a jar (or a sauce tree as she called it) fails?

There’s also frozen pizza, chicken nugget and “hand held snack food” pre set buttons for her.

I wrote this review while participating in a Test Drive Campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Frigidaire and received a Frigidaire Range/Microwave to facilitate my review.

a grand smattering!

This is one of those posts like the recap episodes in sitcoms, they just brush over all the funny parts of the episodes you’ve already seen either because the writers are all sick and tired of writing funny crap or because they honestly have nothing left to write.

In my case? I have a whole mess of crap I need to cover and rather than dedicating entire posts to each I’m just going to make the dreaded list and hope that maybe you can help me out.

1. I’m a finalist in a video contest with my friend Adam where the prize is $5K, if we were to win we’d split the money 50/50 and we’d each donate some to a charity of our choice, in my case it’s Friends of Maddie. Because hello? It’s Maddie. All it takes is one click to vote, ours is called “Chicken Sandwich.” Much obliged.

2. If you could tell the people within shouting distance of you to vote for our video as well your eyesight will improve and your hair will become shinier. (Okay, so maybe not, but it would be much appreciated.)

3. Blog Indiana is coming up again in August and I’m in the running to present on two panels. But only if they get enough votes, right now the boys and their “MAKE MILLIONS WITH BLOGGING” panels are kicking my trash. My first panel is about “Tastefully Selling Yourself Online” and my second panel is about “Pictures of you and of Other Stuff.” Each one takes only one click to vote (you do have to sign in with your twitter account…just a way to make sure there’s no shady business.) That being said, if you’re anywhere in the area you should really come to the conference, this is it’s third year and the people who present are brilliant.

4. The Casual Blogger Conference. It’s in Utah at the end of May and the ladies behind it have asked me to come speak on blogging about/with/through depression. It will hopefully be the antithesis of depressing, but this is obviously something I feel very strongly about and I think this conference will be the perfect place to give that ol’ rat terd depression a voice of understanding. If you can make it? You should.

5. Vaseline Sheer Infusion lotion. HATE the commercials (tiny people in spandex between the layers of my skin?) love the lotion. (not sponsored.)

6. March for Maddie. The Indianapolis March of Dimes walk is coming up on April 25th. Anyone and everyone is welcome to join our team (Hoosier Favorite Preemie?) and donate. Sign up or donate here. I’d be more than happy to have you wander around downtown with me in honor of Maddie.

7. Did you know I work for the Indianapolis Convention and Visitor’s Association? I do. And I love it. I know I know. “BUT CASEY! YOU HATE INDIANA!” I did, but somewhere in the last four years I fell in love with this stupid flat state and it’s Midwestern charm. And once I did? I never looked back. I write about stuff to do with little kids, but I share the Indy love with single guys, married guys, single girls and married girls. We know our stuff, and we love this city.

8. After my post last night I went back through my archives a bit, you know, the stuff I’ve written for Addie. I couldn’t be happier with the words I’m leaving behind for that little kid. Someone linked this article in the NYT in the comments of my last post saying it reminded them of my blog. I sobbed through it. It’s beautiful.

9. This article in the Dallas Observer about Mom Bloggers. Brilliant. Hysterical. I literally kissed my screen.

10. Quinoa is tasty (gluten free!), but when it’s cooked it looks like teeny tiny little condoms.

11. I asked twitter if there’s anything they wanted me to include here. Katie and Julie would like you to know that tights are not pants. My favorite Klingon Translator on Twitter would like you to all buy a Palm Pre or Palm Pre Plus. And TechBurgh would like you to know about TechBurgh.com and this book about a little quail. (Which I am so painfully puzzled by and yet the randomness of it is just delicious.) Lastly, an adoption raffle to help a family get a baby. Adoptions are expensive, but totally worth it, ask anyone who’s ever been a part of one.

Have a wonderful weekend all you sweet people out there in the world. I know we’ll be having one here.

xoxo

eleven hours closer.

I had just finished singing her “Catch a Falling Star.”

She turned around and asked “Mom, can people touch stars?”

My first instinct was to say no. Burning balls of gas, millions of years away.

“Of course you can.”

“Are they like light bulbs?”

Again, burning balls of gas millions of years away ran through my head.

“They’re like shiny piles of glitter.”

She giggled, found my hand, laced her little chubby fingers in mine and snuggled close.

I buried my nose into that magical spot on her neck, surrounded by freshly washed curls.

I breathed her in.

Being a mom is hard.

At this moment the thought of her little body growing 11 hours older two rooms away from me is exquisitely painful.

In the morning she will be 11 hours closer to 6.

11 hours closer to her first day of Kindergarten.

11 hours closer to her first date.

11 hours closer to not needing me.

This is going too fast.