30 April 2009

It is back...

I thought that once I had the all clear on the health front my mildly neurotic hypochondriasis would have subsided. But no, thanks to my super fast broadband connection, my lovely laptop and the internet, I am now totally 100 percent obsessed with reading about Swine Flu. This morning when dropping cupcake off at the creche I wondered had anyone recently travelled to Mexico (or indeed New York City)? Then on the bus some guy was sneezing up a storm and I wondered how many other people were having the same thoughts as I? I tried to sit as far away from him as possible. In fact, several people opened the windows. Then I noticed that on my mp3 player I was listening to 'Bring Me to Life' while gazing at the newly painted funeral parlour. It certainly does not help that my favourite book in the whole wide world is Albert Camus' The Plague, and after all these thoughts I began to recall the book in grim detail. It was actually quite comical in a very sad neurotic sort of way.

28 April 2009

Mother or Sisyphus?

There are times when I am incredibly productive. I manage to feed and water the baby, mop the floor, wash AND fold 3 loads of laundry, cook 3 separate meals and run a nighttime bath. No I lied those days happen oh so infrequently. I have never managed to be totally organised in my home life. Two days ago I marveled at the state of these hand-me-down clothes we received from a friend of a relative. Pink and girly and ironed. Seriously who irons a 1 year olds clothes? Obviously a greater mother than I... Back to my point, I am just happy if I manage to get through the day without causing a bigger mess in my house. My lovingly husband, who oh so passive-aggressively 'gives out' to me remarks that muddle makes more muddle. He says it in a sickly sweet voice when talking to our daughter, disguising it in the form of a 'life lesson'. We both know who he is really addressing. Herein lies the crux of the matter. Every time I make an attempt to tidy, straighten, organise or clean, there is a second pair of hands following me undoing all of my doing. Remember how I espoused my delight at spending the day constructively gardening with my little sweetheart? While outside this afternoon, knee deep in weeds (oh God that just totally gave me away), I turned to witness sweetheart clawing at the neatly firmed compost in the terra cotta pots that line our flower (weed) beds. She was grabbing handfuls of dirt and emptying the pots onto the ground. Worse still, she had managed to pluck out all of the new shoots from our Italian lettuce leaves, radishes and carrots. This is only one of many examples of my productivity being completely obliterated by my sweetheart. Am I Sisyphus, doomed to roll the heavy rock of my tasks back and forth for an eternity?

27 April 2009

My fickle darling

We have had a small break through on the eating front. Today my little darling cautiously tried an almond butter sandwich with the teensiest amount of jam. I watched out of the corner of my eye as she picked up the bread and thought about offering it to the patiently waiting dogs. I tried to hide my excitement as I didn't want to throw her off. She outstretched her little hand, sandwich clenched in fist and decided instead to take a bite. I nearly danced a jig of joy! Then tonight I managed to hide zucchini in her oatmeal and she ate two bowls! Success! Strange how I feel so rewarded by outwitting my 14 month old child.

26 April 2009

Delicious Sunday Breakfast

I have a weakness for legumes. Creamy, warm refried pinto beans or cold chickpeas thrown into a chorizo and spinach salad. I eat hummus off my finger if I can't locate a suitable dipping vegetable. My grandmother used to make this wonderful Italian bean stew that consisted of pinto beans, giant rigatoni noodles and rosemary. It was a winter staple in our house.

You can imagine my delight yesterday when combing through the aisles of Sainsburys in Newry, when I fixed my eyes upon canned black beans. Yes I know, very unpatriotic going North of the border... so sue me. Canned black beans? I am not a patient person as has been outlined in previous posts and despite soaking beans overnight, I always have to boil them for hours on end. That kind of preparation time isn't necessarily conducive to those spur of the moment bean cravings. I have an awfully hard time finding canned black beans in my local area. Needless to say I bought eight cans. Last night I made the most wonderful spicy beans with sauteed onion, left over chicken, red and yellow peppers and corn. I then mixed in chopped tomatoes and this very spicy salsa seasoning packet I picked up at Cost Plus and squeezed an orange over the top. Despite my mouth being on fire I nearly demolished them. Cupcake did motion towards my bowl of beans and I placed one tiny kernel of corn on her tray but it went straight on to the floor. Poor Oscar probably has indigestion.

Today I decided to make myself a bastardized huevos rancheros. I only recently discovered huevos rancheros on my last trip home in December. I know, call me crazy, but for breakfast I usually prefer something sweet like french toast if eating out. I feel cheated in a way considering I eat Mexican food everyday when home in California. This morning I heated the leftover beans, chopped some spinach, toasted a crumpet (another Sainsburys purchase) and fried a sunny side egg, oh yeah and added some hot sauce for good measure. It was heaven. If only I had a soft corn tortilla...

25 April 2009

Food Problems

My child is officially a picky eater. Gone are the days when she would eat cheese covered broccoli, a nice stew or mac and cheese with peas. My daughter's diet now consists of a banana and cereal for breakfast, a box of raisins or a babybel cheese for snack, yogurt or a fruit cup for lunch and perhaps a slice of bread or a potato farl, breadsticks for afternoon snack, and for dinner eggs or fish sticks and peaches. Except today she didn't even eat the eggs, probably because I had grated zucchini into it. Seriously though, I just can't understand it, she eats like a mad woman for the creche. I am rapidly approaching my wits end. In fact, I think I passed the sign about a mile back. The thing that really gets me is that I am a good cook. Yes, permit me to talk myself up here, but I am a really good cook. These days everything I cook is met with pure disgust and goes straight off the highchair tray onto the floor for the dogs. I am sad to report that Oscar has regained the 2 lbs lost during his temporary paralysis and all due to my little ray of sunshine. I've tried bringing it back to basics, I've tried livening things up. I've combined, I've separated - different bowls, plates, cups, etc. I've moved the high chair around. I've let her sit on my lap to pick off my plate. I've pleaded, cajoled, cried, pretended not to notice. She basically only eats carbs and fruit. What am I to do? I want to bring the boobs back. Is it too late?

In short, I am what rad dad describes as 'perflummoxed'. 

22 April 2009

Please Consider Donating for Team Noelle

A friend of mine from high school is currently battling AML Leukemia.  She had gone into remission but has recently relapsed and the race is on to find a suitable bone marrow donor. Below is a message from Noelle's sister Juliette explaining the situation:

My 29 year old sister, Noelle, is bright and bubbly, she virtually sparkles and shines. A UC Davis graduate, she is the epitome of a young on-the-go professional enjoying life, friends and family. She could be your daughter, friend, cousin, coworker or niece. 

However, her normal, young adult life has taken a serious detour -- again. After being diagnosed with AML Leukemia, treated, and in remission, Noelle was starting to get her life back on track when her blood test results of Friday, April 10th indicated that she had relapsed. 

A stem cell (marrow) donor is needed. The first step is to find a match. I am not a match, I wish I were. But you could possibly help.

Even though we seem as white as can be, we are half hispanic, which makes it harder to find a donor.

Donor tissue typing costs are completely covered by a grant for everyone of Asian/Pacific Islander, African American, Latino, Native American, or Multi-racial decent because of the severe need of donors from these backgrounds.

A simple procedure --- 4 swabs of your cheek cells 10 seconds each -- determines your tissue type – that’s it.
Please consider this gift of life. Join Be The Match – National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP) – together we can make a difference. 

To register online:
Go to www.bethematch.org, click “Join”, then click “Join Now”, use promo code TEAMNOELLE2009. Once the online forms are completed, a swab kit and instructions will be mailed. Mail the kit back to NMDP and once the kit is processed, you will be entered into the Registry. A confirmation letter will then be sent. 

100% Caucasian donors will be asked to make a $25.00 online tax deductible donation. Ethnic and mixed race donors will not be charged – due to their under representation in the registry.

This special drive will expire May 15, please do not delay if you would like to register online. It can take 6-8 weeks for the process.
If you have any questions, I would be happy to answer them or you may contact www.bethematch.org. / NMDP Representative Magda Silva (510) 301-9512.
You can also register in person. Drives are constantly held. Please check the website for dates and locations.

Pass the word on!

website: www.bethematch.org


After checking on the website it appears that the bone marrow donor organisation for Ireland is not linked with that in the US so it seems that if you are interested in donating you must be based in the US. Please if there is anyone out there who wants to donate please do so. Noelle is an AMAZING person and needs a donor.

21 April 2009

Remembering Loss

Today I attended the funeral of a friend's grandmother. As I peered out my window I lamented the grey dark clouds and thought to myself what an appropriate backdrop for the ceremony at hand. 

I got to thinking about funerals, indeed, about different 'rites of passage' and how as a society we mark those occasions. The last funeral that I attended was my grandfather's in December 2006. I was living here in Ireland at the time and got the call that I was to come back for the ceremony. Despite knowing that my Grandfather's long period of suffering had come to an end, I didn't want to say goodbye. No one ever wants to say a permanent goodbye. I became conscious of the collective rituals that we participated in to celebrate his life. From the shared memories, to our individual goodbyes; we all mourned differently. It was probably the first time that I have been home where I had no other obligations other than to think about his impact on my life and my family. After his funeral those of us 'of age' decided that we needed to drink copious amounts of alcohol and celebrate life. My brother and three cousins and I  poured forth our grief mingled with laughter. We came together as a family to commiserate, to remember, and to celebrate. It struck me then, that death was as much about living as it was about dying.

At the funeral today I was surprised by the number of people who attended; clearly this was a well loved woman. Afterwards I felt compelled to join family and friends for lunch. The sun had decided to grace us with its presence. I was not disappointed in my decision to attend, the venue was beautiful and well chosen, with a lush and fragrant garden that seemed to reflect her life. The rich colours were bathed in the warm light of the sun as cupcake and I strolled around. Thinking of my friend's grandmother I was aware of a peaceful feeling and I thought that this day seemed a nice way to mark her passing.

20 April 2009

The Weekend

It was an interesting weekend to say the least. On Saturday I attended a seminar, Reading Bracha Ettinger. It was delightfully theoretical and had my brain working in unbelievable directions. Bracha Ettinger is a Lacanian trained Psychoanalyst, also a friend of Julia Kristeva, Luce Irigaray, Emmanuel Levinas and Jean-Francois Lyotard. Wow. However, I was thrilled to my soul to listen to art historian Griselda Pollock join in on the day. Pollock has written extensively on Ettinger's theories and her art. I am a huge fan and now I am an even bigger fan! Not only was she extremely glamourous but also so insightful. And I picked up her pen. (go on you can call me a nerd). So after that heavy day I decided only some very cold beers could help me decompress. As it turned out I was right.

On Sunday I ran around after cupcake at the playground. She loved the swings and adored the slide, although Mommy only felt it was safe if we went down together. I spent the rest of the day minding her while Daddy studied for his exams. Last night was the night from hell, I really hope there are some teeth on the way soon! Co-sleeping with a child laying sideways in the bed can never be fun. Oh well at least I had her head, Daddy was stuck with little feet digging into his back.

This morning, despite feeling like someone had kicked my head in and made me sleep on a bed of nails, I roused myself to partake in some 'fresh air'. We ventured into the garden and had fun eating dirt and pulling weeds. Cupcake loved putting her arms in the watering can and dropping handfuls of compost into the flowerpots. It was very joyful for all involved (us and the two dogs) and nearly erases her lunch time escapade of hurling a bowl of spaghetti at my newly painted wall. Nearly.

17 April 2009

Incineration vs the Environment

Just a couple minutes ago some guy called to the house with regards to hauling away the growing pile in front of our garage. We have had work done to the house over the last few months and we keep 'decluttering'. But I am environmentally friendly and if someone wants me to pay them to haul this junk away they better 1. have a permit and 2. be disposing of it in a way I feel it safe for the environment. He had no permit, so I asked him, what do you do with it? He incinerates it. Oh God. I was like is that legal? I thought we weren't allow to incinerate rubbish. He was like I just take it to a field behind my house and burn it. Whatever I may feel about controlled incineration in a CONTROLLED environment, incinerating trash in a field is the same as a giant bonfire. I am staunchly AGAINST bonfires. I don't mean a glorified campfire with wood in a permitted area, I mean the Irish style lets burn couches and rubber and plastics and inhale the fumes until we poison our children type of bonfire. (Yes I am dramatic) There is absolutely no way I am going to let this guy take away my pile to burn it uncontrolled in a field, I'd much rather have the old coffee table sit there for a while longer. The more I am thinking about it I am actually feeling sick, how many illegal operations like this are going on out there? 

16 April 2009

Pet Peeve #212

For those of you who know me you can probably recall a time when something or indeed someone has annoyed me. Today I give you pet peeve #212.

On the days I work from home, I make a _____ (insert word here - puny? miniscule?) attempt to tidy the house. At some stage I stare at the growing pile of laundry and think to myself that it is time to get a start on it. Generously my husband has left a load of clean -but-now-dirty because they have been in there so long for me to deal with. This usually means rewashing to combat the smell of damp. After rewashing today I removed the items to throw in the drier when it hit me, pet peeve #212. A small, red  christmas bib had lovingly velcro-ed itself to my good bra. When I attempted to separate the stretchy spandex from the close embrace of the velcro the material snagged. It was one of those moments when I could feel my anger rise to the surface. There are two things I keep asking him not to do: 1. Put frying pans in the dishwasher to be cleaned and 2. Put the velcro bibs in with anything they might snag - i.e. my underwear, workout clothes, stretchy tank tops. Wait now that I am thinking about it there are a lot more but in the spirit of all things fair I will just mention those two.

15 April 2009

Gender Roles in Children's Books

PB (pre-birth) I would spend hours imagining the possibility of having a daughter with whom I would share my love of art. Most importantly, I envisioned myself birthing a little feminist. I have often said that I am from a long line of strong women. That doesn't necessarily mean that there is something inherent in my DNA that will instantly produce an offspring who celebrates gender equality or one who knows the power of her own self worth. These are things we have to work at and sometimes I feel like every time I take a step forward in one area I take a step backwards in another. You must be wondering what the hell am I on about? 

My pequeno pepita loves looking at books and recently has been fascinated with Irish Legends for Children, a book  her father simply insisted she must own. It is more age appropriate for for the 4+ range as the book and print are small and the pages are easily torn by clumsy fingers. Nevertheless it is now the book she reaches for when it is time to wind down in the evenings.  Before bed last night I selected Deirdre of the Sorrows to read to her. Skimming ahead while she looked at the pictures I realised it ticked all the boxes of the traditional fairy tale. Druids foretell a terrible fate for Deirdre, she will be the most beautiful woman and the cause of many deaths. Wait a minute, I have heard this one before, Helen of Troy anyone? In order to avoid this, King Connor vows to marry the girl when she is old enough and whisks her away to a forest where a wise-woman raises her. Deirdre dreams of Naoise (enter tall, dark and handsome warrior) and upon meeting they sail away together (I am sumarising here folks). They return to Ulster believing themselves forgiven by King Connor only to fall prey to a trap. They are captured and Naoise is slain. Deirdre dies of grief, hence the name Deirdre of the Sorrows. Half way through the tale I threw it down in disgust and made up my own about a strong woman who can do anything she wants to and doesn't need a man to dictate how her life will turn out or indeed save her from any terrible fate. Surely there must be a feminist fairy tales for little children, or at least one that promotes gender equality instead of solidifying gender roles so often found in children's books (and Disney movies) from days gone by. Traditional texts and images continually reproduce woman as weak and passive and man as conquering hero. Personally I think we could do with more characters that subvert these common gender stereotypes. 

As a funny aside my husband interrupted my tirade against all things that reinforce essentialist notions by reminding me that I don't need to deconstruct everything. I could only roll my eyes and say, if I don't deconstruct, how can I reconstruct?

14 April 2009

Around the World in 80 Clicks- A Motherhood Journey

I've just been tagged in an 'Around the World in 80 Clicks - a Motherhood Journey ' connecting blog moms around the globe, asking them to list 5 things they love (or don't love) about being a mother. The original post was by Catherine at Her Bad Mother. I was kindly tagged by fellow Irish blogging Mom, Irish Mammy on the Run.

1. Breastfeeding. Hands down the most amazing thing about motherhood so far. I loved the closeness of our bodies and the way she would pat my breasts as if to reassure me that I was doing a good job. I loved feeding her in odd places like after the Women's Mini Marathon, sitting on a curb after running ( jogging? power walking?) 10k. Selfishly I loved that I was the only person in the whole world that could provide that for her.

2. Pickiness. She used to be an amazing eater, I am talking all types of organic veg out the wazoo - spinach, broccoli, zucchini, peppers, squash, and pumpkin. Now she won't eat anything, it just goes straight on the floor to the dogs. In fact she had 6 breadsticks and a fruit cup for dinner. Now I am beginning to understand why people resort to readymade meals. Except I refuse to give in, I will win this battle of the wills.

3. The homing device she has placed somewhere on my person. Not that I am frequently trying to evade her but she always manages to find me. That makes it sounds like I am abandoning her in a shopping mall or something. What I really mean is she could be playing happily with toys suitable for a 14 month old such as remote control, my keys, mobile phone, etc and I could leave the room for a second. Somehow she manages to teleport herself attached to my right leg. It is really amazing, or annoying, depending on how you look at it.

4. Language. I am so grateful that I read all that psychoanalytical stuff that Sigmund Freud, Jacque Lacan, Melanie Klein, Luce Irigaray and Julia Kristeva have written. It is fascinating to watch her developmental stages, especially now that she is learning that we are separate entities and language begins to help her define herself. I love the crazy mouth acrobatics she is obsessed while trying out new sounds. Our latest vocal pursuit in search of linguistics includes darting the tongue in and out of the mouth touching the top lip making a 'lebble lebble' sound. She could point to a picture of an elephant a hundred times and never tire of me saying, 'Elephant, elephant, elephant'.

5. Special Moments. Those times we share where she is so heartbreakingly cute. For instance, when I weaned her she only once asked me to feed her. It was 3 am and she pointed to my breast and asked 'That?' and I said, 'No honey, that is all gone'. She understood the enormity of what that meant and just started to cry (I cried later). Or when she arrived home from daycare and laid on the ground so our miniature dachshund Oscar could sniff her body. Last week she learned to blow kisses and now when she wakes up she blows a kiss to the picture of my parents in her bedroom.

UPDATE: Looks like this thing is really starting to get going... For more views on motherhood check out Psyche at a life reconstructed.

11 April 2009

Candy and Cupcakes!

I don't celebrate Easter, for the simple fact that I am not a Christian. In fact, I am not anything (except woman, mother, artist, etc) but nothing that pertains to anything of the religious persuasion. That being said when speaking to my parents on Friday, my father intimated that I was the Easter equivalent of the Grinch. He reminded that was I to be present this weekend in Tahoe, I would have received an Easter basket. Our family tradition was to hunt for our wicker baskets that the 'bunny' would cleverly hide throughout the house. They were often filled with our family favourites; plastic eggs with brightly coloured jelly beans, cadburys mini eggs, a Reese's peanut butter cup and my eternal weakness, a large See's Bordeaux egg. He contended that I was a killjoy and should allow the little one a small taste of chocolate. I wish I could tell you that she has never had any chocolate, but apparently there was one incident when I was away in Krakow. She opened a kitchen cabinet, found a large partially unwrapped chocolate bar and left teeth marks from here to Timbuktu.

Seeing as how we were attending Sunday dinner at my in-laws complete with visiting cousins, I decided that I would dye some hard boiled eggs for the kids to look for in the garden in lieu of the usual sugary sweets. There were several very cool DIY websites that offered simple instructions using things most of us would have around the house. Unfortunately all I had was wine and red currants. I figured that would make a purply-red egg, but I forgot that the eggs here are brown! So instead my glorious hard boiled eggs were an even darker shade of brown and resembled the chocolate eggs they are supposed to substitute! When that project failed, I thought that mini cupcakes for the kids might be the way forward. I adapted a vanilla thyme recipe to create a peach vanilla thyme cupcake. I garnished them with a cream cheese frosting and a strawberry for good measure. After all my hard work my little cupcake didn't even want to try her cupcake. Too bad - everyone else loved them! 

How I spent my long weekend... Cooking

I love long weekends, to me they equal lazy days, good meals and general relaxation. Yesterday we spent the better part of the day recovering from the previous night's meal. We had my American friends over for dinner. I decided to boldly go where I have never gone before and cook a whole salmon. I was a bit nervous because fish is not my forte. Salads, chicken, vegetables, baked good; these are where my strengths lie. But because my friend is a 'fish eating' vegetarian I said what the hell. I managed to find a large whole salmon at Tesco for 6.49. Now even though it is farmed that is a deal in my book. I roasted it on a bed of leeks, stuffed it with Valencia oranges, red onions and basil, and it was brushed with orange butter. It turned out fabulous! I served it with roasted potatoes with mint, steamed green beans with parmesan and butter (an idea courtesy of E.B.) and a salad with pear, feta, pumpkin seeds, spinach and mixed leaves with a balsamic honey mustard dressing. Our friends brought over a nice bottle of white, a new treat for us. We are mainly red drinkers but the white went down surprisingly well, almost too well. 5 bottles of wine later... (someone had run out to the off license !) I didn't think I would feel like cooking yesterday but I managed to rouse myself for a roasted chicken with a squash, parsnip and spinach gratin. Today I've been a bit more productive, I went for a run this morning and started tidying the back garden. My little friend kindly helped me by throwing a ball for Lulu and she also tried to help me pick stinging nettles (ouch). Now I am slow roasting a half leg of lamb for dinner. I bought some fresh rhubarb (Eoin's FAVOURITE stalk?) and I was thinking of making a compote to serve with the meat. Tomorrow we are planning to head out for a bike ride if the weather remains sunny. 

08 April 2009

Healthy as a Horse

Despite the announcement of the emergency budget and its long reach into our wallets there has been some good news in my life. A couple of weeks ago I went to have some tests done - i.e. liver, kidney, thyroid, you know the drill. I woke up one morning and realised that ever since producing offspring I worry a lot about illness and my impending death. I am not trying to sound like a fatalist here, even though I feel like one sometimes, but I think having a child puts your life a little more into perspective. For example, all those stupid things I agonised over PB (pre-birth) seem silly and miniscule in comparison to the real issues AB (after-birth). I finally decided that it was time to go have things checked out to put my mind at ease. After receiving the results yesterday I can now report that I am as healthy as a horse. My cholesterol is not only good, it is excellent. This is a huge relief because my father's side of the family is prone to high cholesterol, most since their thirties. The only slight 'blip' was that my iron is low, within the normal range but nevertheless on the low/normal threshold. I have to admit I am a bit puzzled since I am a member of the spinach fan club and eat raw spinach in salads 4-5 times a week. Perhaps I need to think about getting back together with red meat...

05 April 2009

My little buzzing bee

Upon arriving home yesterday afternoon from my two days away my little honey bee cried as soon as I opened the car door. It was nice to know that someone had missed me. However I have to admit that the elation I felt when I saw her was soon quashed. We went over to my sister-in-law's for an early dinner, tea, I believe they call it. When my husband mentioned it to me on the phone I misinterpreted and thought tea as in a cup of. Really the last thing I wanted to do was go and make small talk. I just wanted to sit at home with my baby on my lap and cuddle her all night. Despite enjoying my two days I really missed having her near me all the time. As soon as we arrived over, honey bee went to absolutely everyone except Mama. I actually thought I was going to cry. On one hand, I was happy to see that she is so open to different people (grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousin), but on the other I felt hurt. I mean, didn't she need that closeness with me like I needed it from her? 

04 April 2009

Reports from Manchester

Good news, the conference paper was... a success! I can breathe easy now. I was worried I would be torn apart but was spared. The crowd was friendly and super understanding when my paper came in at 20 min instead of 30! I had culled a good deal of material in my second to last edit, only to realise that I definitely had more time. The feedback was positive across the board and I was relieve that the organiser, someone whose work I admire was very supportive of my ideas. Woo hoo! One of my most exciting developments of the day is that I have met a kindred soul who is an American based in Belfast. We had the most amazing conversation, it was like talking to myself about art but better. I think I need to have more of those shared art moments. It makes me remember why I got so excited by art in the first place. I think it is so rare these days to meet someone who just blows me away. I am delighted with a new connection. That sounds like a fortune cookie...

02 April 2009

The most bizarre moment...

This is a little off topic, but then again this blog is really about me, so indulge me. I arrived safe and sound in Manchester and at the train station I bump into an acquaintance. We decide to take the train in to town together and I dump my stuff in the hotel. I am not really the best at traveling alone. I like to talk. I like to have people I know to talk to. It is kind of daunting traveling on my own. Together we go for a couple drinks. We chat, catch up on gossip, etc. then he reveals that he is meeting someone. Turns out this someone is exactly 13 years younger. Hmmm. Awkward silence. Oh cool, I say. So we walk over to the train station to meet her. She didn't like that he went for a drink with me and throws a hissy fit. Seriously - was I that dumb at twenty? He tries to introduce her to me and she says oh hi and doesn't even look at me. Talk about INSECURE... So I graceful say my goodbyes yada yada and say maybe we will meet up later, let me know what your plans are... Then I turn to her and say, hopefully next time we meet you will be in a better mood. I am still shaking my head, that was so weird.

01 April 2009

Cheap as Chips... er Chickens?

Wow this morning I saw free range chickens in Aldi - 4.99 for 1500 grams. Talk about a spectacular deal! I can never afford the organic chicken but I feel good about free range. At least I know that the animal is being treated with some decency. I think what really bothers me is knowing that the biggest seller out there is are the breasts. What ever happened to using the rest of the bird? I love a good homemade chicken soup - boil the carcass, add some carrots, celery and noodles... yum. I actually don't mind buying a whole bird and cutting it up into the separate pieces for different meals. Seriously a huge savings and how many more meals can you get from it?

Admittedly I do not feel that way about other animals - i.e. pigs and cows. But I don't eat red meat (only very rarely) and pigs, I am sorry but the thought of offal, kidneys, liver, and trotters (feet for all you non Irish based readers) just really turns me off. Recently, I have had several 'incidents' with black pudding (ok maybe it was the wine that did it...) I am also the girl who used to eat bread and butter religiously as a child and went through a non-egg / non-fish period. I have only recently (i.e. last 5 years) had what I call my seafood revolution. On the topic of food, my newest guilty pleasure are potato farls hot from the toaster, like a potato poptart. Yum.