Humor Feed

best. morning. ever.

I should be working, but I just had the best morning and wanted to get this out before the scent of playground metal leaves my hands.

1907740_672764359482125_8138052188721743777_n

Some days even the most tedious of activities can turn into the most fun.  This week I started working again.  I mean, I'm a mom, so I'm really always working. But I started writing for pay again on Monday which means I have to be on an actual schedule or I will pretty much fall victim to my own lack of self discipline and immediately regret my work before I even start each day.  

So I put myself on a strict write-five-articles-each-day-before-the-sun-comes-up regimen and have been sticking with it.  Although last night I looked at the calendar and realized that this morning I would have to change it up a bit because circled in red were the words Allergy Shots right there staring back at me.

Every second of every minute for the rest of last night I sat calculating and recalculating how I would get the rest of my work done this morning considering I had to stop midstream and go to the far reaches of the next town to get stuck with magic allergy needles.  I couldn't concentrate on anything else.  I basically burned the toast for our dinner BLTs.  I still don't really know if the kids took showers or even brushed their teeth before bed.  I couldn't sleep when I went to bed.  I was kept awake by the fear that I would lose my entire week of being disciplined simply because I had a slight change in my schedule.  I felt like a smoker who quit years ago but was on the brink of having just one more and then watching the rest of my life go down the tubes...

But when I woke up this morning, guess what I did.  

I just said f**k it.  

I sat in front of the laptop aimlessly trying to figure out how I could work the day and instead of giving it any more thought I closed the lid, got up and went into the living room where my son was sitting.  I asked him to go wake up his sister and we were off.

Instead of worrying any more, I just stopped.  We got my allergy shots and then went to breakfast at the diner.  I let my 10 year-old daughter order a short stack of chunky monkey pancakes from the adult menu while my son ordered the "Boots" from the kids menu (which was a short stack of chunky monkey pancakes).  My son got some hot chocolate with whipped cream.  We talked and laughed while I sipped my coffee and the two ate their identical yet completely different breakfasts. 

"What should we do next?" I asked.

We decided on the park at their school because it is always exciting to play at school without all the rules.  Instead of sitting on a bench and watching, I joined them in their quest to be as quiet as possible while climbing across everything.  We were ninjas.  We walked up the slides.  We scaled the tops of the handrails with our feet.  We jumped from the rock wall to the next obstacle with ease.  

We ruled.

We rested in the climbing tube all tangled up with each other's limbs.  I could see my daughter's hair was stuck to her face.  I'm sure mine was, too.  My son's cheek was right next to my lips so I kissed it.  It felt surreal; like it couldn't possibly be real life.  But just as that moment felt like it was about to flit away like a dandelion seed, it rushed back into my heart and stayed there.  

We all decided that this has been the best morning of the summer.  Hands down.  No contest.  

And all that work I was worried about last night?  I still have to do it.  But I know it will flow off my fingertips now.  All because I stopped worrying.


I'm going to Blogger Bash! #BBNYC

 

Blogger

I am so excited to be going to Blogger Bash - my first ever blogging conference - in NYC next week.  It is going to be SO much fun seeing and actually talking to all the wonderful people I have met online through blogging, meeting representatives from brands I love, and just getting into the City again after a waaaay too long hiatus from visits.  

Before the big event happens, all of us attendees are asked to participate in a little bit of a Q&A about ourselves.  A Coffee Talk, if you will, where we can get to know a little bit about each other. 

Well, here ya go..

1.Name - Cindy

2. Where are you from?-  Good ol' New Jersey

3. How long have you been blogging? - My first ever blog post was on June 23, 2011 on my friend Jamie's blog loserpie.  The title of the post was 'First Time Out of the Box' and it explained how I didn't know what I was doing.  After 3 years of blogging, I'm sure some could argue that not much has changed.

4. What is the meaning behind your blog name? - I have two blogs 'Whatever Works' and 'What the heck's a bonbon?'.  'Whatever Works' is what I find myself saying in most everyday life situations because as I stated before, I really don't know what I'm doing most of the time.  

'What the heck's a bonbon?' is my response when someone asks me if I sit around all day eating bonbons as a stay-at-home parent.  I figured that would work AOK for my recipes especially since I never have all the right ingredients.

5. What are you most looking forward to at Blogger Bash?- I am looking forward to the entire package.  I have never been to a conference like this, so I am planning on taking it all in as much as possible.

6. What three words describe you the best? - Giggly, Tall, Mom

7. Got kids? How many? - Yep.  I've got 2.  Both are one of a kind.

8. We all have a pet peeve. What is your #1? - Inconsideration of others

9. If you could have dinner with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be? - My family.  We have great conversations at the dinner table.  It's my favorite time of day.

10. Show me your face!  Cindy

Can't wait to meet you next week at Blogger Bash!


The tale of the Axinator - Review of BabyPop Designs and GIVEAWAY!

Once upon a time, there was a boy named Ax.  Ax liked to walk around his neighborhood looking for damsels in distress that needed saving, bank robbers who needed thwomping, and other dastardly schemes that involve the much needed help of a super hero.

Then one day, Ax's mom handed him a package that had come in the mail.

Ax opened it to find a mask and a cape with a lightning bolt emblazoned on it with two letters that read...Ax.

Immediately, Ax put it on and became... Axinator1

Through his mask, the Axinator scanned the area for trouble.  He spotted a lonely caterpillar... trapped on the burning hot pavement! Axinator collage

The Axinator moved quickly and scooped up the caterpillar.  He ran as swiftly as he could to the safest spot: the grass.  He put the caterpillar safely in the grass and backed away...knowing that he had just saved the day.

So now that you know the tale of the Axinator, I want to tell you a little bit about the dynamic cape and mask duo we received from BabyPop Designs!  

Both cape and mask are made from premium satin and eco-friendly felt.  Each cape is custom made based on color, logo and initials.  The capes are very well made with finished edges and a Velcro neck closure.  Masks come in two different shapes and a variety of colors as well.  BabyPop Designs also makes other cool superhero-y items like gloves, shirts, crowns, full costumes and even capes for your dolls or pets!  Oh, and you can get one too, Mom or Dad!  All items at BabyPop Designs are very reasonably priced (child's cape- $17, mask- $4.50)

As a bonus, BabyPop Designs was very gratious to offer this wonderful giveaway for a customized cape and mask!  One lucky winner will receive a cape and mask combo in the color of his or her choice.  The cape can be made with your choice of logo: Crown, star, lighten bolt, shield, circle, or heart.  Just enter below using the Rafflecopter form.  PLEASE remember to complete each task if you choose it as an entry.  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

And be sure to check out BabyPop Designs! 

 

I received a cape and mask from BabyPop Designs for my honest review of the product.


Snippets of the past few years

I was just going through to see if I had any old, unpublished posts on here that I could work on finishing today.  As it turns out, I don't think I want to finish any of them.  And I don't want to leave them sitting there all alone by themselves in the blogging abyss either.  So, here are the snippets of unfinished posts for you to enjoy.  Or delete.  Or whatever.  They are all related and unrelated at the same time.

Whatever happened to birthDAYS? - Oct 10, 2011

We've been celebrating my daughter's birthday for about 4 days now.  No reason.  It's not a "special" birthday or anything.  No milestones to report.  No fantastic news attached with it.  It's just the birthday that never seems to end.  It started with the mandatory school cupcakes.  Then birthday dinner.  After that was the kid party that night.  Then came the family visit with presents and cakes and fun galore.  We were afforded a small break in between events that some like to call "sleep", but for me it was more like "lay in bed and figure out how to dye a Pringle orange so it matches the bill of Perry the Platypus so I could use it on yet another cake."  It was all one big run-on sentence.

Contrary to popular belief- Oct 31, 2011

Contrary to popular belief, I love animals.  I think bunnies are the cutest things alive.  I won't intentionally kill an insect unless it's biting me or someone close to me.  We have bird feeders outside that I love to look at during the cardinals' feeding times.  I love animals just as much as I love people.  That's the main reason I don't want a pet.

I've had pets before...bunnies, guinea pigs, fish, parakeets.  They were all hard work, and I loved them.  I was so sad when they all passed away.  They were all members of my family.  It was heartbreaking to watch each and every one of them fall asleep and never wake up.  Having a pet is the same to me as having another child. 

Predicting the future- March 16, 2012 

I wonder if my parenting instincts are right.  Every once in a while, I catch a glimpse of what I think my kids will look like as teenagers or even adults.  I also envision them acting in certain ways when they're older.  I wonder how much of it will come true. 

My daughter currently is much deeper into her emotional side than I thought 8 year olds could be. My son is a wack-a-do.  He's only 3, so he's got time.

Things that will never change- March 30, 2012

Chip bags will never be closed properly resulting in forever stale chips.

dirty socks on couch

"I know"

clothes on bedroom floor

toothpaste in sink

What blogging has done for me- Oct 1, 2012

When I first started blogging, I thought I may have finally found a great avenue for my brain spillage.  I could write down some of my thoughts to see if anyone else shared similar ones with me.  I had no idea it could possibly lead to everything it has so far.  

Over the past year and a half, blogging has given me something much more than just an outlet for my innermost thoughts.  

Stay away from the news- Oct 26,2012

I try my best to stay away from the news.  I know, I know... I'm supposed to stay abreast of wordly things and know what's going on around me.  But do I, really?  Lately the news has gotten so bad that my head hurts constantly.  I don't sleep and when I do I wake up with a large crease between my eyebrows from apparently horrific dreams.

I've decided to focus more on that  "around me" bit.  There are so many things going on around me in a MUCH closer vacinity that I should concern myself with.  Bye bye news.  

Talking with God- November 15, 2012

I've been talking with God a lot lately.  As everyone who watches the news knows, we had a terrible storm here almost two weeks ago that ripped apart a lot of shore towns, left northern town without power- some who still don't have it- and just shocked everyone.  Shocked.  Numb.  Sad.  

I rush around like an ant trying to help rebuild my community one little grain of sand at a time.  Everyone acts the same. We all go right to work.  No one is slacking.  Yes, there are some unscrupulous people trying to take advantage of the situation by selling back donated items to stores and taking too many pillows, but they are few.  The majority just want their homes back to normal.

I feel guilty for having a bubble placed around me.  No damage.  No nothing.  My children are safe.  I can still go get my hair done and go about my life the way I normally have in the past.  But I can't.  Someone told me the term is "survivor's remorse".  I like that better than guilt.  I'm not guilty of anything... I'm just feeling remorseful.  

Blogging- July 18, 2013

Every time I sit down to write here, I think of an episode of House I watched a long time ago.  Laura Prepon played a blogger back when blogging was sort of new-ish.  Her blog was basically a public daily journal that had many followers.  She wrote in it religiously which made her husband (boyfriend?  I don't remember) question her actions.  Why did she feel that she had a connection with people she didn't even know in real life?  Why did she write there so much?  

I think I figured it out.  

Same day- July 18, 2013

Today I can't shake the feeling that something is wrong.  Who? Where?  What?  I don't know.  But my gut is telling me something needs to change.

I have been inside the past three days writing my face off...trying to meet deadlines...trying to get everything done.  Am I missing something out there?  

Purpose- Oct 23, 2013

I have always had a very hard time buying or owning items that do not have more than one purpose.  One of the two (or more) purposes of each item has to be one that is actually physically useful.  The next requirement is that the item makes me happy.  Anything else is gravy.  

So some of the normal things that happen in life don't come as easily for me.  Everything I do has some sort of purpose.  In some cases, that purpose may only be known to me and it may seem strange to outsiders looking in.  And that purpose might not be relavent in the grand scheme of life, but it is important to me at the time.

So that's it.  That's all my unfinished thoughts over the past few years.  I don't have as many answers as I wish I did.  But sometimes just getting those thoughts out of my head and into the world help get me on my way.  Thank you to anyone who read this post.  I really appreciate it.

 


Re-embracing motherhood

Re-embracing Motherhood

One of the things I've learned while dabbling in the social media field is that people like to read statisics.  Well, here's one for ya: I've been a mom for more than 1/4 of my entire life.  

For the past 10 of my 39 years here on this earth, I've spent a lot of time changing diapers, fixing lunches, arguing the importance of completing the before school ritual before playing video games, making beds -ok, not really so much on the "making beds" part because I do hold to that theory that Hey, you're just going to get back in it in a couple hours so why make it, BUT I digress...  

Bottom line: I'm a mom.

Out of those 10 years minus time spent completing all the motherly tasks and sometimes sleeping, I think I have spent the majority of my time playing with my kids.  After about year 8, I got tired of it.

Yes, you read that right.  I didn't want to play anymore.  

I got tired of Candyland.  I didn't want to make forts.  I completely stopped enjoying the swingset.  

I just wanted to sit back and observe.  

I started to get annoyed when my kids would ask me to join them in every single thing they did.  No, I don't want to ride bikes.  No, I don't want to jump in the sprinklers.  

No, I don't want to play.

Then one day I heard myself say that out loud.  And it sounded so incredibly horrible that I wanted to jump out a window.  I felt like Mommie Dearest.  What was wrong with me?  Why couldn't I just play?  

All I could think of was the term Seven Year Itch, but in my case it was about motherhood.  At the same time my kids craved my attention, I craved to go off to foreign lands...like any store other than Target, Justice or Five Below.  My kids wanted another teammate for a pick up game of tag, and I wanted to sit in the sun.  I wanted quiet.

Was I becoming a horrible person?  Was I really done with all the fun of motherhood?  Did I give up on my kids?

No.  To all of that self-depricating bullshit...  Just no.

When I was playing all the time and not enjoying it, I was feeling down on myself.  I wasn't really playing; I was fake playing.  And how is that good for anyone?  The kids might have an extra body to complete their basketball team, but that's it.  I wasn't teaching them anything.  I wasn't smiling.  I was actually quite childish when I forced myself into their games.  I'm not proud of it by any means.

I felt very selfish about wanting to be alone for a while.  But I realize that I must have needed it.  In some way, God was telling me to step back and reevaluate the situation.  

So I said no when my kids asked me to race them in MarioKart.  I declined their invitation to a dance party.  I chose to talk with my friend on the bench instead of climbing the equipment at the playground.  

I needed to show my kids that I am a person outside of being Mom.  They needed to see me doing things that I like.   And to be honest, I needed to remind myself what activities and things I actually do like!

 As weird as it may sound, it made me feel strong again. Once I re-embraced my own self, I was able to re-embrace motherhood, too.  Now I feel like I can do anything.

...Even play a game of Monopoly all the way through.  

 

 


Silver and gold

Yesterday I had written this really long boring post about friends.  It was after I made out all ourChristmas cards and I was feeling all nostalgic.  It was crap.  It even had a sappy poem in it.  Thank goodness I slept on it and erased the whole thing before anyone else had a chance to lay eyes on it.  I would've been so embarrassed and all the friends I wrote about would've probably disowned me for being so hokey. 

Today everything is much clearer.  I know my bottom line moral to the story I wanted to write: Friends are the best, no matter whether they are old, new, constantly around or barely seen.  This year, acquaintences became friends and friends became family.  New friends became old friends.

My silver turned to gold.

My friends have taken me places I never thought I'd go.  They carry me when it gets too hard.  They run with me when I'm excited.  They help me when I'm confused.  They talk with me when I need an ear.  They laugh with me when I do something ridiculous.

---

***OK, this post has been sitting in my archives for over 2 years. TWO YEARS!***

I never hit publish.  I don't know why.  

But it's funny, because it is still 100% true.  The past few years have really taught me a lot about friendships...how they ebb and flow... how they grow when nurtured...how they make me whole...

I love you, my friends.  I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and a Happy New Year.

 

 


I'm waiting, Patience. Where are you already?

P1010618

Since having children, everything moves at such a fast pace.  Nothing is slow.  Toss in the internet and an iPhone that can give me any bit of information at the touch of a screen and my brain is in overdrive every second of every day.  

My personal motto has always been If I can, I will.  But how fast does it all really NEED to get done?

I wake up every morning moving the gears of the day in my head so that they keep the machine running.  But I never stop moving those gears. There is always something added in that changes everything.

I always complain that there is not enough time.  No time.  Sorry, I have no time. All booked up.  Can't add even one more thing to the schedule.  

Truth is there is plenty of time.  I just don't have the patience to use it wisely.  

Whenever there is a lull in activities, I fill that space with something.  Whenever I need to know something, I look it up right away.  Whenever I want a cookie, I eat a cookie.

So, my dear friend Patience ...where did you go?

I think once I stop all this instant gratification, I will find Patience looking like The Dude sitting in a recliner chuckling at me.  Wondering why I look so frantic all the time.  Telling me to chill the F out.

I think I'll abide.


Grilled cod with almonds recipe

The other night I was trying to figure out a good way to use up some frozen cod we had in the freezer.  The weather was nice, so grilling was on the forefront of my brain.  I wanted something that had a grilled flavor, but still sort of resembled a basic fish fry.  I checked the cabinets for some crunchy stuff I could smash up to make a nice coating on the fish.  I found almonds, saltines and flax seeds.  Perfect!

Here is what I came up with:

IMG_2765

Grilled Cod with Almonds

  • 4 Tbsp & 1 tsp melted butter
  • 4 cod fillets fresh or thawed
  • 10 saltines
  • 1/2 cup roasted salted almonds
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp flax seeds
  • 1/2 tsp dried parsley

Coat the cod with 4 Tbsp melted butter on both sides and place on one sheet of aluminum foil.  Place on indirect heat on a low grill for about 10 minutes.   IMG_2763While it is cooking, whirl up the saltines, almonds, garlic, flax seeds and parsley in your food processor until the mixture looks like coarse bread crumbs.    

IMG_2764

Take the fish off the grill (leave on aluminum foil) and place the whole thing on a large plate.  Divide the almond mixture in four and top each piece of cod with it.  Drizzle the tsp of melted butter over the fish and put the whole thing back on the grill for about 10 more minutes or until the fish is flaky and the topping is slightly browned.  

My husband loved it.  My daughter liked it with a little lemon on it.  I absolutely loved it and really sort of made an ass out of myself declaring my love for it at the dinner table.  My family now thinks I'm insane.  ...Hope you like it! 


On the fly chicken tortilla soup recipe

I love chicken tortilla soup.  I like to think of it as chili lite.  However, I had never made it myself.  No reason, I just always relied on others to fulfill my tortilla soup cravings.  But tonight...?  Tonight I was feeling quite ambitious.  I went into my tortilla memory banks and pulled out all the tastes I could remember.  Then when I thought I had all the right ingredients on my kitchen counter, I referenced a couple recipes online to see if I was right.  Then I got to work.

What do ya know?  It turned out so good that I almost immediately wanted to make another batch.  Here's how I did it.  Hope you try it and love it as much as I did!

1240197_10201867220545197_1748786090_n

On the Fly Chicken Tortilla Soup

  • 2 cooked chicken breasts - shredded
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 tsp canola oil
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 medium yellow onion chopped
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 3/4 cup salsa
  • 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • About 1 cup of crushed Tostitos
  • Garnishes: Greek yogurt, salsa, chives, shredded cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese, chopped avocado
  • Place the shredded chicken, oil, garlic and cumin in a soup pot and toss to coat.  Turn on the heat to medium and add the onion.  Cook until the onion becomes transparent about 2-3 minutes. Add the corn, water, bouillon, chili powder, salsa and lemon juice.  Turn the heat down to med-low and let the soup simmer about 30 minutes stirring occasionally.  Add the crushed Tostitos and turn off the heat.  

    BAM!  You're done.  Now all you need to do is add your favorite garnishes and eat up.  My first bowl had a dollop of Greek yogurt, some Monterey Jack and a couple chives.  Second bowl I had straight up.  Third bowl... OK, I didn't have a third bowl.  But only because after my family had their share it was all gone!  Enjoy.


    I've got the moves like Martha: Summertime remix

     

    IMG_2363
    College Dorm Room Chic is the new Shabby Chic

     Last winter I attempted to clean out my freezer and pantry by skipping the grocery shopping for a bit.  I was convinced that our family of four could live off what was in there for at least that long without buying anything else besides the essentials.  It worked out so great, I thought I would do it again this summer.  Here are some things I got out of the experience:

    -Three things that are not good substitutes for milk in your hot beverage when it's gone: butter, ricotta cheese, yogurt.

    -Two things that are good substitutes: Hershey syrup and vodka.

    -Putting all that mint that took over your backyard in a bowl won't go over well with the fam if you try to pull it off as a salad.

    -Some spices make a nice tea when you pour hot water over them.  Ginger is a great example.  On a similar note, you know what bears a striking resemblance to maggots? Wet fennel seeds.

    -After digging deep into the furthest recesses of the pantry I found the powdered milk I bought before Hurricane Sandy. Good news! It tastes exactly the same whether it is expired or not!  According to my son, it made his tea taste like Chinese food, so I'm thinking of serving it with rice for an exotic dinner tonight.

    -We STILL have a bottle of Jaegermeister in the freezer.

    -Expiration dates on frozen vegetables are just a myth. How did I prove it? Because I found some spinach in there with an expiration date somewhere in '07 (we moved here in '08) and it still tasted good despite the strange color.

    -If you light an apple pie scented candle while eating saltines dipped in applesauce, it's almost like you've got the real thing. 

    -Sneaking kale into a smoothie is cool.  Making a smoothie out of only kale is disgusting.

    Now that we are finished with this summertime project, I have well-proven my point that a family of four can live off of what is in our house for at least a week at any given time.  

    ...I did not say they will live happily, but that's what the Jaeger is for.  Cheers!