Toss some Salt around…

Early morning, 5:30ish, I quietly went downstairs to start Thanksgiving morning. Since we had two tables, we needed 2 sets of Salt-n-Pepper shakers.  Went to fill up the decorative salt and pepper shakers for the first time ever…tilted one over, took the plug out and began to pour salt.

Immediately, I felt salt pouring in my hand that was holding the shaker…and assumed I was missing the hole (It was early) I stopped … only to realize, I was not missing, it was simply falling out the other end, because I was holding the shaker upside down. (Ugh!)

Although we don’t care for Turkey, my husband cooked a great bird.  It was moist and tasty due to cooking inside plastic bag, poking holes in bag and basting with a pad of butter.   Unfortunately, since we had no stuffing inside, the bird cooked a little faster and was done an hour sooner than planned.

The in-laws arrived right on time with the stuffing and variety of items (that we already had), to which my husband’s step-mother informed us that her daughter was always late.  (and a tip, to tell her to come 1/2 hour sooner to any event) – Eventually, She and her new boyfriend showed up about 45 minutes late…and her guy was carrying a 9X12 dish of pre-cooked TURKEY.  (WTF?)

When I inquired about the mashed potatoes and green beans she was supposed to bring, she said she brought them, but still had to make them.  She acted surprised, like she didn’t know that her boyfriend brought turkey.  Seriously?

Between the step mom and her daughter…they took over the kitchen to do their part of the dinner…except, the sister would “start” something and then leave.  She’d go visit or plop herself on the couch and text.  I kept asking who had placed something in the microwave, because it kept beeping that something was done.

She then yelled from the living room to the kitchen, “Oh, that’s the bacon for the green beans.  MOM.  check to see if it’s done.”

Of course, grandma, with wine in hand, was busy telling my husband what to do.  “I don’t know if your bacon is done.  You check it.  By the way, your instant mashed potatoes are burning.”

To which she yelled back, “Oh, stir those for me, MOM.”

Then she’d come back in the kitchen…I ended up leaving and finding a quiet corner of the living room, as my hubby was trying to carve the turkey, the other two began bickering.  Then they kept telling my husband, put everything in the oven to stay warm, while he carved.  The step-sister would walk out…and then come back in…finally to address the damn beeping microwave that had been going off for 30 minutes that contained bacon bits for the green beans.

“Where’s the green beans?  Where are the green beans?”

My husband calmly stated they were In the oven.  When inquired why he did that, “because your mom told me to, to keep them warm.”

She opened the oven door, and peered inside and said, “I can’t find the green beans.”

OMG they are right there.  Meanwhile, because she and her boyfriend are alcoholics, they drink a ton of coffee.  AND I MEAN, our poor coffee pot, I’m surprised still works, because she made like 10 pots that evening.  And one time, she didn’t get the pot on the actual burner and while the coffee was brewing, it was partially getting in the pot, and partially dripping onto the new counter top and down my new cabinets and flooring that is not meant to handle puddles of liquid.  (FUCK)  I had to run in, and try not to over-react, but quickly correct and clean.

After dinner, I eventually disappeared for a bit, while they all played nickel knock with the kids.  I came back to clean-up, and my son, sitting between grandma and auntie said,

“Why are you guys talking so loudly?  You’re right next to my face and saying LALAALALALA”  (I bust up laughing in the kitchen, because seriously, I’m loud…but holy shit…those two are so damn loud and they were basically yelling in my kids’ face, animated or disagreeing over the game.

There is so much more…like disagreements on flakey buscuits vs. rolls  and where the rolls will be placed.  It took me 2 days to recover.  No lie, it felt like I had a hang-over the following day, but only had 1 glass of wine the entire time.




Don’t you love when people invite themselves over and expect you to be gracious about  it?  That’s how I felt when my husband’s step-sister announced:

“Hey, so now that you’ve officially moved here, Thanksgiving at your house!”

Wait.  What?  Our house wasn’t even built yet and it was only end of August,  and was expected to be done around October.  Far too close to have us think about having people over…especially for a holiday celebration.

Her mom immediately seconded that announcement, as she was too old and tired to have at her home anymore.  Which I internally laughed, because the only person going to their house, was her daughter…that lived with her for a while.  It’s her own children that drain her and unable to care for themselves as adults  in their 40’s and 30’s.  And they have no kids.

It doesn’t matter that now that we are in the new house, we are still trying to have warranty items fixed, and trying to get boxes unloaded, etc.  We’re the big jerks if we don’t respond with “oh, sure, that would be great!”

So I’ve been running around, like a chicken-with-its-head-cut-off (ha!) trying to get boxes emptied, our living room / kitchen area somewhat nice – all I gotta warn is – don’t go to the 2nd floor.  I need a post like this at the foot of our stairs.

Danger No One Permitted Beyond This Point Sign.

Needless to say, I will be stressed out… It’s only 4 guests, but when you really don’t cook...and your hyper-critical, step-mother-in-law, is coming… my husband is going to save the day by taking responsibility for the turkey.  We don’t even like turkey.  Normally, my hubby would do prime rib or some kind of other meat.  Now, his dad is coming and traditional.  And all I keep seeing in my minds-eye…

a video playing of I LOVE LUCY moments and like that  movie, Rat Race, where Cuba Gooding Jr. is pretending to be a bus driver taking a bunch of “Lucys” to the I LOVE Lucy convention…and they blow a flat and lose the spare tire, and everyone whines…and the Asian Lucy yells out – “You ruined our whole vacation.”  But instead it will be “You ruined Thanksgiving!”



Discussing with hubby when we should pick up our Pumpkin Pie for Thanksgiving…my 14 year old’s theory of why we should pick it up now…

“So I’m thinking about pie…and I really think you should get it before Thanksgiving…so we have it for 3 days…you know like that formula of PI 
3.something-something… Means 3 days of PIE! “

So, who’s up for that logic?

This just happened last night, and reminded me so much of when my son was just toddling, and talking, not forming complete sentences yet…and after his first taste of pie (thanks to grandma)  Whenever he’d hear the word… He’d come wobble walking, as quick as his chubby little legs would carry him, calling out in earnest…

“I pie.  I pie…ma, I PIE.”

And would pat my leg for a delicious bite, and he’d wiggle his body a bit, back and forth as he chewed… and sometimes would lose his balance and fall on his diapered bottom.  But he’d pop back up for more!

A series of post leading up to Thanksgiving day…

The way I watch soccer

Saturday, I came down the stairs of my new house.  It’s been cooler each morning.  I’ve got slippers on (such a strange feeling) – a far cry different than our days in Southern, California, where it tended to be summer every-single-day.

Going from barefoot/flip flops to thick socks/fluffy slippers for the already cool mornings of Oregon, takes practice.  Seriously, I had to practice “slipping” in slippers and nearly killed myself going down the stairs. (ack!  Save me Jesus!)

Made it safely to the living room and switched on the tv and of course, my husband had the search feature set to “sports” and it took me a minute to realize, every thing I was looking at on the guide, was a sports channel.

It was random.  I scrolled two stations up, and paused to get coffee.  It ended up being soccer.  And before I walked into the kitchen, I was entranced by the two teams playing.

It was a red team vs. a white team with a blue stripe.  The Red team collected the ball and “took their time” lining up very strategically and taking their time passing the ball back-n-forth.  Granted, as much as that was soothing to watch, it become boring to me very quickly.  But the opposing team was the exact opposite, they were a flurry of activity.  When they got the ball, they were like the red team, but on SPEED.  The energy level went up extremely high.  The Red team would get it back, and SLOW everything to more controlled passing, and then the white team…if you listened closely,  I swear you could hear them buzzing like a swarm of bees.


Then, at of nowhere…the white team goes berserk and makes two amazing goals very quickly.  I stood dumbfounded just watching the footwork and the things they can do with a ball, going what seems to be 20 miles an hour on foot.  I’m watching for flames to shoot out from behind their heels, the latest rage in cleats.  Or become hover boards.

The announcers had indicated their amazement as the Red team, Manchester United “MU” were undefeated the entire season, and here the White Team (HUD) just scored…TWICE.  And MU had zero.

At that moment, my daughter stumbles down the stairs, her hair a wild mess, and she’s dragging a pillow and a throw blanket.  She flops herself down on the floor in front of the television, and rubs her eyes and says,

“You’re watching soccer, mom?  And, you have slippers?”

As if she couldn’t believe her eyes.  Now.  This is the funny thing.  See, I didn’t know anything about soccer as my parents were never fans.  I was very familiar with baseball, basketball, football, tennis, Ice Hockey, and even bowling, as my parents always either had on news, or one of those sports.  Never soccer.

…then I married my husband.  He grew up playing soccer and was very good at the sport.  He insisted our kids play, and I was like “wha?  Soccer, really?”  As time had it…I started to learn things. First of all, the darn OFF SIDE rule.  Wha?  Oh, and everyone yells “Off sides” and we had one coach correct us – it’s Off side…no extra ‘s’ at the end.  ( a little tid-bit for those other parents that may be unaware as I was)

My daughter, likes to play, and has watched bits-n-pieces on tv.  However, that’s typically because we force her to watch 5 minutes, to better understand the game.  She quickly looses interest with sports on t.v.

So, now…here we are… both watching and not being forced to by Dad (or older brother) having control over the t.v.  All by coincidence that the guide was set to sports channels. Regardless, dad would be so proud, if he weren’t still sleeping.

I finally get my coffee, and she grabs some powdery doughnut holes.  Someone is tripped and fouled in the game.  Between powdery bites,  she announces, clearly tickled by this revelation…and I’m thinking she is going to share some great soccer insight to this novice mom:

“Hey, mom!  That #2 and #25, they have on the SAME shoes!  No…wait…” She peruses the rest of the team as the camera spans outward, “Oh, the entire team has on the same shoes!”

Yes, but do those shoes shoot out flames or hover?”

…oh, and HUD won 2-1 over MU.  It’s been 65 years (according to the announcer) since they beat Manchester United.  So, we happened upon a history making game.  See, we know what’s up.

Winterize – what’s that?

Do I still have any blogger pals out there?  Where my grrrs at?

We’re in our new home.- – Bend, Oregon!

Yea, us!

Now, we’re dealing with writing down items that don’t work/fall under warranty.  Our laundry room light, won’t turn on anymore.  What the hell?

And now I’m trying to unload boxes.  We’ve unloaded a lot…but I’m trying to kick butt because we want to park (my van, at least) in the garage since winter is coming.

My father-in-law came by with some Champagne (fun!) and a snow shovel (never seen one of those before) that apparently there’s instructions – a proper way to shovel so you don’t hurt yourself?  And they gave us a windshield de-icer.  I want to get my van into the garage asap, so I don’t have to use that sucker all that often.  See…one just has to be properly motivated.  Get the boxes done!  The shovel can be passed to the kids/hubby.

Our dear neighbor, thank God, he is in the construction business and builds houses for a living (he just didn’t work for Hayden Homes) but he was out here often pointing out things the builders of our home(s) that weren’t done properly.  “That needs to be redone and done better.”

Yea for Beau – he’s our beau!  He’s going to install his own fencing and my hubby will help him do the work, and pay him for the materials for our portion.  (fencing via the builder was outrageously priced and no one got fencing)  AND, since we are new to winter season (Southern California is summer all year – shorts and flip/flops all year) – but now we’re going to have snow…so we have to “winterize.”


So, I’ve been in worry-mode as frost is here.  We’ve had some 30 degree weather in Fall and I’m worried about all the roof icing dam issues (they had a terrible, nasty winter last year – where several homes had roof /wall damage from ice dams forming)  And I guess, you have to consider “blowing out” your sprinklers.  Not everyone does it, but it’s recommended.


Not to mention, my Odyssey is front-wheel drive.  Not all Wheel and not 4X.  First I was told to get studded tires, but that can’t be done until Nov. and have to be off by April.  (city law)  But then, my father-in-law said their “all weather” tires work fine.  They have chains if going over the pass toward Portland, but have never had to use them.  Their all-weather tires functioned will enough.  Guess we’re going that route?  Initially, I guess they are a cost, but in the end more economical vs. buying studded tires and  having to switch out (and store others) twice a year.  That costs builds up.

So I’ve been worried, and ultra busy, not to mention this is busy work season with all the school fundraisers in the Fall season.  Yikes.

It was a pleasant surprise, when we drove home after our expensive Home Depot trip to get some blinds (wow – what the hell- why so much for window coverings?) – so Beau…Beautiful Beau…Beau knows… he has been super busy too as his wife just had their 3rd child.  Yet, he had a buddy, licensed/bonded landscaper blow out his sprinkler system, and had him do ours too… we just owe him $35.00 and we didn’t have to DO anything.  He did it for us in our absence.  RAD, because apparently, we’re late in the game to “schedule” as most landscapers are booked.  And if you don’t get this done, once the ground begins to freeze (most say to do by end of Oct), water can freeze in the pipes and expand and crack the piping.  So spring, you’ll be leaky?


So, Beau did us a SOLID – One less thing for me to have to “worry” about…now just my car and roof..and boxes…and sports stuff for the kids.  (tell you about that later)

Floods and Fires

“You gots the FLOODS, and I gots the FIRES.”

I joked with my co-worker that it sounded like medical problems.  Something old Southern Ladies would say.

My co-worker somehow escaped the worst of the flooding in Texas.  Her brand-new neighborhood was built a little higher and essentially became an island.  They couldn’t leave, and luckily for them, the water stopped its invasion at the neighborhood below theirs.  Their street was flooded, but didn’t rise into the homes.

Meanwhile, she kept tabs on Facebook so we all know she was okay and posting pictures for her other neighbors so they could see what was happening around their neighborhood.

Of course, just before Hurricane Harvey was making its way toward Texas, we moved to Bend, OR.  When we reached Northern California, Mt. Shasta area, it was very foggy and smelled strongly of a camp fire.  It was said that some of Northern CA, and Oregon both had wild fires.

It didn’t get any better arriving to Bend.  There are about 5 wild fires and the one nearest us is the Milli Fire, near Sisters, Oregon.  It’s not near enough for us to have to evacuate, but our air quality is super poor.  It’s terrible for me and my son as we have asthma.  It’s terrible for everyone, as when the wind is blowing this direction, it’s foggy with smoke… EVERYWHERE.  There is no getting away from it.  Ash flying in eyes and lungs burning.  I keep thinking about the Stephen King’s MIST, and as we run to our car to avoid being captured by the unknown monster in the mist.

So, we have been cooped up indoors.My kids are driving me crazy and can’t wait for the kiddos to start school, just to get them out of the house.   They don’t start until Wed. Our sports started, but the trainings have been a bust because the air quality is so bad, and practices cancelled.

We had two days of slight reprieve, where the wind blew the smoke toward Portland.  It wasn’t great, but we did get a little sunshine through the layer of smoke.  Then it’s right back, and gray everywhere!  I think we need to start wearing nurse/doctor masks. I feel badly for anyone working outdoors, like the crew working on our house, or the Fed Ex/UPs guys.

The crazy thing?  I never knew this.  I’m thinking 2 weeks of fire.  NOPE.  Wild Fires in forests – a month to Two months!  One started in June.  A few the 2nd week of August.  The Milli one, is expected to go until October!  ugh.  There are about 500 people working on that, but it’s only 40% contained.

All I keep doing is singing that CLASH song, London’s burning…except I change the words Oregon’s burning…la,la,la, laaaa.  “Everyone is sitting ’round watching television…because Oregon’s burning…” nananananhhhh