55 Flash non-Fiction Friday: MILF

My mother-in-law called to ask asked, “You know all those internet acronyms like L.O.L., right?”
“Yes I do.”
“Well, a friend of mine got a message and wants to know what M.I.L.F is.”
I about died laughing. Unsure of laughter as a response she asked, “Is it a complement?” She was shocked by the answer.

The story behind the 55: My mother-in-law really did ask me this on behalf of a friend of hers. Yes, dear you’re now blog fodder. *hugs* Love you! Happy birthday yesterday. :)

55 Flash Fiction Friday

Magical quinoa strikes again

About five weeks ago, I had the following exchange on Facebook:

Friend 1: Mmmm. I just made some quinoa for lunch with a bit of chicken bullion granules and a palm full of Sweet Bell Pepper dip mix. Mmmm!

Friend 2: Quinoa is Keen!

Friend 1: Hee hee.

Me: I tried to like Quinoa because it’s supposed to be all healthy and have magical powers or something, but the texture was a little too odd for me. I also thought it was a little bitter. Am I the only one?

Friend 1: It’s not bitter if you rinse it enough. I enjoy the texture, but I don’t expect anyone in my house to like it. I had it for the first time just a few weeks ago and just had to get some. I will even eat it for breakfast with brown sugar. Yummy!

Friend 2: It can be bitter and the texture does take getting used to. Did you pre-rinse or soak your quinoa prior to using it in your recipe?

Friend 2: LOL about “magical powers”

Friend 2: The rinsing/soaking helps to remove the saponins which are bitter.

Me: I didn’t rinse it because the box I bought said it wasn’t necessary. I think they lie! I mention the magical powers because it seems like every time there is a new health food discovery it’s like everyone pounces on it, and then they make all sorts of claims to the point that you think, “Wow if I eat nothing but that stuff I can live F-O-R-E-V-E-R!”

Friend 2: I am now rolling on the floor laughing…happy?!
I’ve had the same conversation in my head…wow, I must eat this…the most recent one being “Spirulina”…I just can’t get over the green-ness of it though.

Acai berries seem to be that new greatest thing on the planet, but when I wrote about the magical powers of the latest discoveries, I was actually thinking about Broccoli. I know, it’s nothing new really. I went out to a Thai restaurant for lunch with a friend a few years ago, and she noticed that I was pushing all the broccoli to the side. She told me, “You need to eat your broccoli, it’s a super food. It helps prevent cancer.” I kid you not. Funny how I never hear the same about other foods closely related to broccoli that I do eat, like cabbage. I’m just sayin’. I mentioned this on my Facebook status and a friend of mine who needs her butt kicked sent me a link about super foods.

About a week after poking a little fun at the whole lot of magical super foods a dietitian visited our house through the program Sophia is enrolled in to help with her speech and food issues. She basically told me that I was doing a great job providing a good nutritional variety to Sophia despite her issues. She gave me a list of things to try like pumpkin bread, zucchini bread, and carrot bread. She assured me that despite the bread form the vitamins from the veggies will still carry through. She also suggested, get this, quinoa. Yep the super magic food strikes again. Maybe I’ll make quinoa muffins. The dietitian gave me a paper listing her suggestions and on it said, “You are setting a good foundation be consistent and persistent.” She had mentioned that because Sophia refuses to eat dinner, and I don’t make special meals just for her, she is going too long without food. She said we should offer a high protein snack like nuts or quinoa before bedtime. The child is holding out for cookies and other sweets. I’m not giving in to that. Sorry, that’s a no go.

Clothing, not really dad’s fault

Kurt made me promise that I wouldn’t blame him for the way Sophia was dressed since I told him to let her choose what she wanted to wear, so I won’t. It’s really my fault. I told him to let her choose her own clothes. I assumed that any normal human being would know that they need to select either the top or the bottom themselves and then give the toddler two or three choices of the other that are known to match. Kurt didn’t do that. He laid out three random bottoms and three random tops. I have pictures of the results. Please be warned that they my burn your eyes.

Sophia was oddly hyper that day (2/8/10). It may have been due to the bright color selection or it’s also possible that her selection was a reflection of her mood. I had such a hard time getting a good shot of her that I started running up and down the stairs hoping that would slow her down enough for me to focus on her. I put her hair up in a ponytail and wanted pictures of that, so Kurt tried to help me by holding her, and upside-down. Then she ran in and out of her room giggling as Kurt chased her. He finally caught the elusive toddler again to complete her look for the day. Those are dress shoes he’s putting on her, with socks, she insisted.

up the stairs Kurt trying to hold her upside-down running in running out completing the look

playing with hairbands

crazy toddler

Yes, she actually went out in public looking like that. We aren’t cruel. It was her choice.

Scratchy Pumpkin Pie

Our dog sitters usually get compensated with tamales, and they did again for watching the dogs while we were in Hawaii, but this time I also left them a little something else. I always leave a note on the freezer with instructions for how many scoops of kibble goes to which dog and who gets how much of what medication.

The friend that would be feeding the dogs for us on this occasion is similar to me in our cooking methods. We feel spending three hours in the kitchen to create a meal similar to those served by a farmer’s wife in the 1940’s is more satisfying and nutritious than the “Hungry Man” in the freezer section that takes five minutes in the microwave. Neither of us even owns a microwave. I know, it’s sacrilege. At the bottom of the dog feeding instructions I left the following note:

The half a pumpkin pie in the refrigerator is for you and your hubby. Don’t worry, we didn’t touch that half. I made it all myself from scratch, including the crust. Well, actually I didn’t grow the pumpkins from seedlings with time, love, and bedtime stories. I didn’t even buy pre-nurtured pumpkins from the store to use. They were all out. I guess this year was a bad one for pumpkin growing. I did however use two very nice undented cans of pumpkin puree. Oh, I also didn’t milk the cows for the cream I used, or raise the chickens for the eggs. *hanging my head in shame* I didn’t even grow the spices. Damn, I guess it’s not as scratchy as I made it out. But it’s still really good pie. I hope you enjoy it.

scratchy pumpkin pie

55 Flash non-Fiction Friday: Van Gogh’s Blue Phase

“You know what I love about the Smurf toddler pictures?”
“No, what?”
“I love that you sat back with the camera and just let her do her thing. Some parents get all bent out of shape about that kind of thing.”
“Well then I did a whole lot better than that…I gave her the pen.”

Everything is her canvas! Even the bottom of her feet!Everything is her canvas! Even the bottom of her feet!And the top of her feet.knees and toes, knees and toesAdmiring her workThis pen? No, I didn't touch *this* pen.

The story behind the 55 and a little beyond: Last weekend we had a day set aside for potty training. I barricaded Sophia and myself in our basement floor because it’s tiled and there is a bathroom. We played with the big LEGOS and read lots of books. We got bored after a while so I gave her a blue pen and paper. I knew she would draw on herself a little but I ignored it. I heard her drawing on the paper and after about a minute turned to look at her and there she was, Smurf toddler.

Shortly after the pictures, I sat her on the potty and read a few more books while she did nothing. She did the sign for dirty and wanted to wash her hands at the sink so I let her. A couple minutes later she came out saying, “wet, wet, wet”. I’m looking at her like, “no shit, you were just playing in the sink.” Then I saw the blue trail from the ink washing off the bottom of her feet.
“Oh, you peed?”
“Yes.”

Kurt got a little bent out of shape about Smurf toddler. He asked me if it was a special washable pen. I said, “It was a pen off your desk. I’m sure it’ll come off eventually.”

A little later Sophia peed in the potty. She sat on the potty for about 30 minutes while I read to her. She started to go and then looked at me, “uh oh, wet, wet,” and she tried to hold it. Then she saw my big smile and realized it was a good thing, “Yay! Are you peeing in the potty?”
“Yes” she smiled.

55 Flash Fiction Friday

Food, a potential choking hazard

Now they’ve gone and done it. Parents can’t possibly have the time to know about the latest and greatest proper way to serve a child under the age of fourteen a hot dog, so lets repackage them just for the kiddies and put huge warnings on them. Yes, apparently some five to thirteen year olds still require mommy to cut up their hot dog because they couldn’t be bothered to use those things in their mouth called TEETH. Granted, many seven year-olds have huge gaps between their teeth, but I’m sure they can still bite and chew a hot dog.

Doctors seek food labels on choke dangers

Thousands of U.S. children are treated each year — and 100 die — because of choking, and food is the leading cause.

Let’s be clear. That is the heading and subheading of the article. Within the article itself reads, “Of the 141 choking deaths in kids in 2006, 61 were food-related.” That’s 141 choking deaths of kids from birth to 14 years, and 61 in the ENTIRE country were due to food.

Doctors say high-risk foods, including hot dogs, raw carrots, grapes and apples — should be cut into pea-sized pieces for small children to reduce chances of choking. Some say other risky foods, including hard candies, popcorn, peanuts and marshmallows, shouldn’t be given to young children at all.

You mean everything that parents give as healthy snacks are a choking hazards. Wow, got it. Apples are the only thing on the first list that Sophia will even eat. I’ve NEVER cut them into pea-sized pieces, NEVER. I started by cutting them into wedges without the skin, then with the skin, and now she prefers grabbing a whole apple. She won’t eat the whole thing, but that’s how she wants it served. I’ve seen how normal toddlers eat, so I can see why someone would start out with tiny pieces, but that’s the point. If parents are allowed to use just a tiny bit of brainpower, they’ll figure it out. It doesn’t take much.

The second list explains why I would get such dirty looks from mothers my own age, but not from the grandmas at Sophia’s swim class. I *shock* gave her peanuts, cashews, and almonds to snack on after class. They don’t identify what ages qualify as ‘young children’, but I’ll wager that a two-year old is in that general range.

Federal law requires choking warning labels on certain toys including small balls, balloons and games with small parts. There should be a similar mandate for food, the pediatrics academy says.

We want products that make everything easier but have ZERO risk. Now Make it happen! You see, the fundamental difference between balloons and food is that food is supposed to go in the mouth. Food is supposed to be swallowed. And hot dogs *twitch* do in fact qualify as food, even though they smell like rancid ass and are the only meat that plump when they’re cooked. I’m just sayin’.

If The American Academy of Pediatrics gets their way and things like carrots are sold with warnings then you can count on me to march lockstep with them. That’s right I’ll totally back them on this, no joke. I’ll make sure to push my own requirement that all penises are labeled as a potential gagging hazard. I mean really, we don’t want anyone to cause themselves any discomfort. The warning shall read, “May transmit STDs including but not limited to HIV and herpes. Depending on use can be a potential gagging hazard or cause pregnancy.” Of course to be fair the vagina should also have a warning, and then extra warnings just for women concerning pregnancy, “The overall pregnancy-related mortality ratio was 11.8 deaths per 100,000 live births and ranged from 10.3 in 1991 to 13.2 in 1999.” Between 1991 and 1999 there was a range of 3,882,000 to 4,111,000 live births per year in the United States. The average comes out to 3,976,330, divide it by 100,000 and then multiply by 11.8 to get the average number of pregnancy-related mortalities of 469 a year.

Just think of it. If we can really use warnings to keep people away from things hazardous to their health like cigarettes then a warning like that over genitals ought to keep everyone a masturbating virgin until death. We won’t ever have to worry about children choking on another pseudo meat product ever again.