Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Flight Manners or Why Upgrading Your Flight Ticket is Worth Every Penny!

The oldest daughter and I went on a little trip last week to look at a school she was interested in attending. She has been working for several months now and offered to take me along as a chaperone, free of charge. (Did someone say "Free trip to England??") She bought the plane tickets and I footed the bill on everything else. Some lovely English friends from our old church offered us their home as our base camp and another friend from South Africa literally handed me the keys to her car so we were all set to go!
Fast forward to the actual day of  departure and we are at the airport...............

Now, finally, we had boarded and were waiting for the moment that we roll onto the runway and take off.

Before we even get started, the seat in front of me leans back to hover across my lap. Why did they do that? Didn't they hear the announcement about keeping their seats and tables in an upright and locked position? Oh, yes they did! They have proven that they aren't deaf since they are chatting away and answering each other in a Dutch accent.
This type of behavior is what I have labeled, "Selfish Public Obnoxiousity" or "SPO". These types of people believe that it is their right to have it their way, no matter if it is rude to others or not. There is a whole generation of them coming up. Parents, identify and fix this problem with your children so they don't become one of those rude people.
We all know people like that. They make you lose your temper and the ability to reason in the English language. I need space and this calls for me to upgrade my tickets for the next flight, at any cost. Yuck! End of subject.

Back to the trip...
Next, takeoff. It wasn't a bad takeoff at all. We came up to speed and began to admire the impressive view of the cityscape below our large flying machine. Bump. Bump, sssshake, jiggle. Calm and peace for a moment. Again, bump, bump, shake, jiggle, jiggle.Thereafter begins some vibrating and shaking of the whole plane. I began to think that the clouds, wind and sky were playing  a slow motion ping pong game with us. This continued on for a good while.
Let me give you a quote that may put into perspective how much movement we had going on. "If I knew that my boobs were going to be dancing so much, I would have worn a sports bra to this party!"
I tell my uncomfortable motion sickly partner that the shakies will calm down at 10,000 feet. We continue to ride like the cavalry at war for another 10 minutes then, "Ahaaaah", the ride suddenly becomes smooth moving skate on ice. Just like I said, 10,080 feet! (I hit the nail on the head there.)

Lots of flying hours and flight experience make me an old pro at this game.
First pass by the flight attendants netted me a ginger ale and some rice crackers .

A few hours pass while I watch a movie, Thor 2. If you don't know me well, then let me tell you that I adore Thor. He is the epitome of hunky handsomeness. He could stand around and sell moldy butter for all I care as long as I can look at him. That man is lovely! End of subject.

The next flight attendant interruption was ginger ale and a lovely pasta with veggies & chicken and a whole bunch of carbs.
Back to my captured audience movie watching. "Percy Jackson 2 and the something of something." It wasn't as bad as I though it would be. It kept me awake for a while........

An hour or two later, there are strange noises I hear coming from across the plane. The sound of an old car trying to be started, but it is choking up, is a way to describe it. Think about it for a second...There you go.
Now this strange noise continues off and on for a while and I am thinking that this person who is coughing needs medical attention. Then my mind wonders and I think," WHAT? That person is sharing that nasty cough with us! Did they even get a Doctors approval to fly? What kind of nasty disease is that?" I quickly inhale some alcohol hand sanitizer to fend off the  thought of germiness and vow to find that diseased perpetrator and talk them to justice!

Round three by the flight attendants is nearly missed by me since the overwhelming feeling of comatosia is taking over my mind. Too much sitting does that to me. I decide to cruise the aisles in search of.... some excitement! But alas! None is to be found since most of the flight consists of sleepy bodies.. Boring!

The pilot flashes the light for "seat belts on" and the vibroshake plane begins again. I take my seat by climbing between the reclining seat in front and the lap of the nice lady from India at the end of our three seat aisle. After that Yogic icebreaker with our neighbor, we begin to chat about how long we had left on our flights. She was on the second leg of 30+ hour journey home We had the best of conversations about cultures, vegetarianism, and tag teaming our trips to the toilet so we didn't have to straddle each other. She was a darling and we were blessed to meet her.
Back to my captured audience seating and I decide to listen to some classical music next. A half hour later, the announcement to "Prepare for Landing", come in over the intercom. We start gathering our things for arrival.

 We are almost there! Yeah!

Five minutes before landing, the deep, gutteral sound of snoring pierces the air....

Welcome to Britain!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

The Flu ain't got me (for long)! (But it did get the hubby!)

So, this season, has been full of cheer, cold weather and the usual things that are thrown at you during the winter. We had Thanksgiving at my house, A birthday party at my house and Christmas at my house too. Now from that, you can see that my house is a busy place sometimes. Thank God for my cousin and his lovely wife, who hosted the New Year's dinner at his house.
So what does all of this have to do with the flu? Well, it all started when my oldest decided to get a family gift of a trampoline. Can you see where I am going with this? (Ha! NO, unless you keep up with me on Facebook!)
This now famous trampoline was delivered after Christmas and since the children didn't know that it was coming, there was a beehive of excitement when the UPS truck pulled up and it took BOTH men to wrestle the box out. Everyone rushed out to see what it was and they jumped up and down when they figured out what it was. My hubby and son put it together that evening and needed to do a little more when the sun came up to make it safe.
Next morning, my hubby goes out to put the finishing touches on the trampoline and the children begin the hourly barrage of jumping on it. Unfortunately, without planning ahead, there wasn't a step up or down to shorten the height of getting into and out of the safety net. The children came and went without a hitch until the oversized son of mine climbed in and the extremely undersized 6 yr old hurried to get out. She decided to speed up the process by jumping(committing jumpicide), off the side of the rails , but instead of landing on her feet, she landed on her side with her arm pinned behind her back!  I was in the house and as soon as I heard the "cry of pain", I was at the window viewing what was transpiring. The teenage son was gently carrying his wounded sister in the house for an assessment by Dr. Mom. Dad was busy concentrating on something else so he ignored the cries of pain! (I don't know HOW he does it!)
The son was laughing, but the 6 yr old was bawling about her arm hurting. We iced that tiny arm down in all of the place she said that hurt and she lay on the couch with a drink watching, "Night at the Museum" within 15 minutes. Hmmm, 4 hours later, she was still lying on the couch and could pinpoint the exact place of intense pain. Great! But maybe not so great. This is the child who bounces back from everything. She is what we have nicknamed, "The Chihuahua." Perky, spunky, vocal and 
noisy, this child doesn't sit still. But this time, she did. And I figured that we would have to hit up the local emergency room before the night was over.
We went and there was a crowd. A real crowd full of sick people. Oh, it was a miserable place except for the few smiles from here and there- people who had come along with the sick people to get them well before they contaminated the rest of us non-sick people! One man stood out in the crowd. He looked as if too many doughnuts had passed from his hands to his stomach and then he rinsed those down with too many french fries. He was near balding, but I wouldn't have looked twice at him except that he was coughing. He was sloppily coughing all over his hands, arms, seat and the air surrounding him. He barraged the room with his NASTYNESS. I wondered how did he get this far without a mask and went to ask the nurse. She gave me and my daughter a mask and said, "You might have come in with something, but we don't want you to leave here with the flu." (Insert silly, crooked smile here.)  I asked, "What about HIM? Isn't he is a cesspool of disease? Shouldn't HE be wearing one too??" She said that he was given one!  Okay! (Insert stoopid gene here.) This guy who had the power to not infect people was too I-don't-know-what to wear the mask! This is crazy!
 Now by the grace of God, my phone rang and y daughter and I left the room to go to another area and talk for 45 minutes. When we came back, the cesspool of disease was gone and so were half of the patients. Peacefulness was restored! Cleanliness was not.
Twenty four hours later, I was hit like a train wreck with the headache, fever and the wrost bodyaching pain of a lifetime.
I went from normal to delirium (at least that's what the family said!). But all I knew in my sane mind was that I wasn't going to stay down! I can't be out of commission for more than a day or two. No mommy wants to be fired. That would be an insult to the institution of motherhood! I felt so bad that I considered going to the hospital for any drug that took the aches and headache away! I knew why people committed suicide! It was from the pain! I know why people have addictions to painkillers! It's the pain!
I began my regimen with Boiron's Oscillococinnum,  Vit-d, Vit-c, Oil of oregano, sambucus, lemon, honey and whiskey in hot water, chicken broth, ginger tea and water-lots of it.
-Boiron's Ocsillo is taken every 6 hours.
-The vit-D needed is 8,000 IU's daily. I split it up as 2 or 4 times daily.
-Vitamin-c chewables 500mg. I took one of these hourly if I was awake. I knew to cut back when I hit bowel tolerance (the near diarrhea point, sorry about the gross factor!) Then that meant every other hour I would take one.
-Oil of Oregano- I prefer "Physicians Formula Oregacillin", but since that is hard to find, I went with a good brand and took one hourly too.
-The Sambucus, I took 1 teaspoons 4 times daily.
-Two tablespoons each of honey, lemon, and whiskey. Put these in a teacup and add boiling water to make a throat, cough and nerve soothing cuppa!
-Chicken broth, for keeping hydrated and your daily dose of Jewish penicillin! I might have had 2-3 cups daily.
-Ginger tea, sliced, peeled ginger simmered in water, strained out and add a bit of honey for taste. let's face it, this stuff burns! But I think it was also killing germs and bacteria on it's way down!
-Water, as much as you can drink in between all of this other stuff.
-Don't have any sugar or carbs. These things feed the virus and you want it to leave you sooner than later! ( After 12 hours, I felt great. So great, that I ate a cookie and within 20 minutes, my symptoms came back! Bad idea!)
-You HAVE to keep hydrated! Your body has to work and it needs fuel to do that.
-Rest, lie around and doze all day. This is an inside job for your body to fight without you using up all of it's energy!

I gleaned a lot of ideas from years of use on my hubby. He has had a flu shot every year and every year, he becomes ill. He came through my sickroom declaring that he wasn't getting my "dreaded disease". Three days later, he was hit with the flu and has been sick ever since........
Here is a great web post  about natural flu treatments which adds to the list that I am personally using.

Thank you Wellness Mama!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

What's going on??

As usual, life has taken me for a bit of a ride lately. Well, maybe not just a ride, but a bit of an adventure or maybe better said, a safari!
Since I last blogged over two months ago, we have moved out of our "short term" apartment, were homeless for two weeks, took a road trip to VA to visit the Inlaws that we love so dearly, moved into a house that well, seems to make me angry each week, my oldest got a job at one of the most expensive department stores in the US- the store where my father worked for over 20 years at. My husband suffered with a terrible bout of diverticulitis and now we sit in this house waiting for a cold snap to come and force us into eating popcorn and hot cocoa for a snack. (I had to mix in the good and the bad, eh?)

So physically, I am fine. I feel great, but I have gained more weight while partaking of the array of fast food restaurants while on the road for the last few months. My pants are snug but I just haven't gotten off of my fanny to do something about it. When wake up in the morning, the race begins! Four of my children are at home and I am currently homeschooling the older/nonworking two until January. (Long story)

So, I do still exist in blogland, I just haven't sat down long enough to write about my existence.
I sometimes feel like I am failing in the homeschooling department because of my lack of follow-up. My husband encourages me, but I seem to be having an adult case of ADHD.

How about you? Have you started 5 things at the same time only to not finish any one of them?
How do you get things done-not just done, but completely finished?


Saturday, September 7, 2013

The Korma of Death...

Since living overseas, we acquired a taste for unusual foods. That is, unusual for American people foods. We love Oriental food, French food, Polish food, German food and have a big love of Indian foods. So, when we went to our favorite scratch and dent store and they happened to have some great mixes for Indian foods that we like, we jumped at the boxes and bought a few.

It was late, Friday night and my oldest and I had been at a church function till late and didn't have a chance to eat a meal. We naturally assumed the best from the hubby and two older children, that they would get some food for us, but alas, they did not. I figured that we had several choices of leftovers so that we wouldn't starve, so I wasn't really worried. I toodled off to my bathroom and went to business doing a deep condition on my poor, tired, frazzled hair. A short while later, I came out of my room with a plastic bag on my head and to my nostrils awakening to a fond smell of something exotic, something distinctly delicious in the air.
 Oooooh, I wasn't a bit hungry and yet the smell convinced me to try some. I went to my laptop to send off an email and wait out my 20 minutes of deep conditioning.  The oldest slapped a small bowl of beef Korma Curry in front of me and whisked away to find a seat and try some also. I inhaled the savoury aroma of spices and took a forkful into my mouth then began to chew. I was waiting for all of the fond memories of our favorite restaurant to come back to me when I felt the beginning tinge of heat and tingle on my tongue. The feelings became more intense and before I knew it, my eyes were popping out, my tongue was hanging from my mouth and I was begging for some yogurt to extinguish the flames that had overtaken my senses. Simultaneously, my oldest began pulling ice cream out of the freezer as I was slinging yogurt across my mouth in a hasty attempt to get it inside quickly and spread it over the burning areas. She was doing the same but still eating forkfuls of the offending food at the same time! 
SADIST, she is, but I AM NOT!
 Thinking ahead, I wanted to be able to go to bed without the flames making their way to my chest and clutching my heart in an ashy grip of death.
 "This is NOT the Korma I remembered!" I shouted. "I didn't feel like I was dying after I ate it the last time!
Needless to say, I am headed to the fridge to retrieve a Guinness so that I may possibly sleep tonight. If it gets any worse, I'll guess I'll pour it down my nose.........

A quote from my son, "DANG, ya'll said it was hot, not magma!"

Monday, August 19, 2013

My Birthday Boy!

I am happy to announce the age turnover of my only son! Each birthday for him has been a challenge since he is a summer baby. His friends are scattered around the earth and something drastic always happens around his birthday. But he never complains..........

Dear Young Man,
You have been such a blessing to our family. As you grow into a responsible youth, I want to thank God for your presence. Your gracious spirit, kind heart and cheerful demeanor have been an anchor to your sisters. You have the smile of a saint and the heart of an angel. You don't complain when you need anything, you just merely put a gentle "word in my ear". There is no nagging from you. I have to drag you out to buy things that you need and you are so thankful when you receive things. Your sisters love your very presence and you are always willing to play with them (even when it comes to being their servant!). You are the family tech guy! If you can't fix it, we are all out of joint! You always know how to have fun. You are the only person in this house who can keep up with my barrage of wisecracks and badly timed jokes.
 You know that you are here for a purpose and that God himself sent word of your coming to your father. We don't know what His plans are for you, but we ask that you always listen to Him because you will never go wrong doing the will of God.
 We love you WynMan!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

A New Version of Loaves and Fishes aka "Beets and Sausages"

If you know my family at all, you know that my children eat just about anything. They are a blessing in the picky eating department since they really aren't picky. I have one who dosen't like "fishy fish"(but loves salmon croquettes), another who dosen't like raw carrots,(but love them cooked) , one who dosen't like mashed or baked potatoes (but loves french fries or hash browns) and that's all. Oh, and none of them like cheap American chocolate, highly processed foods or microwaved anything!

 Now with that list, you can imagine that our diet consists of a lot of homemade food. So, for a dinner surprise tonight, we had a thrown together meal of Polish Kielbasa, Thai rice, garlic butter sauteed-california blend vegetables, sauerkraut and pickled beets. Hmmm, sounds like a refrigerator clean out meal to me.

Whilst I sauteed the sausages, the girls each plated a side dish. I heard the rants and raves of one daughter saying how much she loved beets and that they were "Natures Candy"! The two youngest ones hadn't really had them before so they were invited to have a preview bite. The youngest slowly chewed hers and as she swallowed her last bite, you could hear the sounds of delight as she asked for another bite, Then another bite and also ANOTHER! She was sent to help set the table in an effort to save some beets for the rest of us.

We finally sat down for dinner and dished out the meal. The youngest quickly devoured her sausage  and beets, promptly asking for more. We obliged, saying how much she was eating lately and if this was a growth spurt. Everyone had another round of dinner including another serving of the beloved beets. Us older folks knew we shouldn't push the limits of food intake, so we surveyed the leftovers in hopes that there would be some to pack in daddy's lunch for the next day. There wasn't much left but a half dozen coin sized slices of sausages and after fishing through the beet juice, only one slice of beet left.
As you can imagine, the little one asked for it and another round of sausages to accompany it down. She should have been full and stuffed by then, but we let her have 3 sausages and the last beet. She gulped that down at about the same time when the nearly teen asked for a couple of sausages to help "clear the table". Whatever girl! Here, we shall make Daddy something else for lunch. Effectively with that, everything was gone and there were no leftovers, but the little one persisted. She had to have some more (could this have been a competition?). We explained that it was all gone and she just had to look forward to thee next meal with beets. She kindly grasped the beet dish and used her fork to sift through the red murky liquid..... She stirred for a few moments and intently looking into the dish, started to stab and drag something to the side of the bowl.. What could it be? Three of us already checked fro stragglers and there were none, but she dragged two more beets up the side and with help, flopped them onto her plate. She was so happy! She stuck her fork back into the sausage dish and fished out two more sausages also! What was this? There was nothing left in those dishes but the child managed to get exactly what she wanted. It was nothing short of a miracle for which she was truly thankful for. After that, she put her plate away and ran off to prepare for our after dinner walk.

Have you had things like this happen to you??? Even the little things count.......

Friday, July 12, 2013

Night of the Neckbones!

It was an untypical night. We were feeling a little need to be in touch with our southern roots.  My oldest was inspired by a smothered pork chop recipe and really wanted something different for dinner. There were various meat products in the freezer that needed to be eaten since the freezer burn clock was ticking........
Voila! Neckbones!
 For some strange reason, there seemed to be several packages of them in the back of the freezer and I only used the smoked ones when making cabbage or greens, so how did we end up with so many packages anyway? Errrrr, whatever. Let's do something with them! Smothered porkchops, neckbones, smorkchops, smeckbones, smothered neckbones! (Did you see the evolution in that?) So somewhere, someone had made them and it was up to Google to help us find a recipe.
We were directed to where the grainy video appeared to make the upcoming dish look delicious! (I also viewed the Ghetto Cooking Show version of this dish and was highly distracted by the strange blouse/bra strap and lecture about Whitney Houston's unfortunate death.)
Needless to say, my oldest had her heart set on this dish and it looked like we needed another package to make sure the teenagers had enough to make their meal. A run to Wal-Mart- here we go....
Now wash the bones, season them and put them in the oven. Make gravy, pour over bones and bake some more. Sounded easy and they were looking great!.
Side dishes included rice, roasted brussel sprouts and a cucumber salad.
Only the oldest, 5yr old and I knew what we were serving up for dinner, so when the others sat down at the table to eat, they had a big surprise.  A lovely dish full of browned bones and gravy! My son had an uplifting eyebrow moment and plowed forth, piling some on his plate and speculating how to best partake of the road ahead.
The two youngest had to have the meat scraped and pulled of of their bones so as not to provoke choking. (We actually like them, you know!)
The 11 yr old had the biggest smile since this was a hands-on meal and she is all about getting her hands messy.
Mr. didn't say much for a few minutes because he was surveying what to do next. He placed some on his plate and dug in too. After about 4 minutes, there were questions of " Where is the meat on this?, I got a bone!, and "When is the dinner coming???" There was lots of laughter and passing around of napkins and choking on over salted brussel sprouts. Baby Dear wanted more meat and with a shuffling of hands and rattling of bones, someone produced a tablespoon of meat to top her rice.
 Where's the meat???

Mr. broke the silence with, "Bacon brings vegetarians back to meat, neckbones drive people away from it!". The son says, "Is this what happens when Dracula is the butcher?"
By the time we finished eating them, we figured we had burned more calories than we ate! Too much work for so little meat. "If we wanted to trick folks into having a near vegetarian meal then you should have said something!"
We had a good laugh and had to eat something else to make up for the deficit!

"The Tower of Bones"as interpreted by Wyn