Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving Recap: Quick Shots

Here are the highlights.

TWO TURKEYS (!!) lovingly crafted by the Turkey Nazi Master, Carl.
(only some stuffing with chestnuts and raisins, so as not to scare off those seeking the utmost in stuffing tradition). For those not in the know, it is best to vacate all areas occupied by the Turkey Master while turkey is in progress. Those choosing to disregard this warning in effort to give stuffing advice or offer basting assistance imperil life and limb. It is best to simply clear out and let the magic happen.

My totally freakin-cool pumpkin apple soup with chives and bananas on the side (inspired by a friend at Friends Thanksgiving) served IN A PUMPKIN (inspired by Alton Brown). I am so fancy.

My new niece, Ava. Also, my take-the-picture-now face. I was holding the mask aside and holding my breath so I didn't steam my cough germs down onto the baby's perfect non-diseased-riddled face. Despite my purple-puffy eye circles, I am quite blissful at this moment. November has been an exhausting month-exhausting, delightful, and endlessly amazing.

The first snow of the year!
Apparently, Ava made her great entrance at the precise moment that the snow started to fall.

Wendy insisted on going outside and licking flakes out of the air for as long as I could park my preggo hipposaurus butt on the cold front step.

Also pictured: the Great Dark Blur. Commonly known as Duke the Un-Photographable. He was enchanted by the snow as well. Later, he was enchanted by the random turkey and stuffing scraps dropped surreptitiously near his nose by guests. It was a good holiday for Dog, too.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The B.F.T. (With surprise extra turkey!)

We are hosting, for the first time in our house, the Big Family Thanksgiving.

You may have noticed the manic around here lately...but its all good now. The FHA inspection is finished and all important things are taken care of. We have our closing costs in order, the frantic cleaning is done, the cranberry sauce is obtained, the candles are in place and ready to be lit, we are mighty and capable heroes of domesticity.

Now just to sit back and cook up some turkey. Or...turkeys. This is our first Thanksgiving! In OUR HOUSE! One pathetic turkey will simply not do. There are people coming! This is a monumentous occasion in our lives!

Carl was up this morning at god-knows-when, chopping and sauteing and stuffing the birds, and in they went at around 8:45. THANKFUL! TRIUMPHANT!

Then Casey, my sister's boyfriend, rolls through the kitchen.

Me: Good morning! Is she up yet?
Casey: (kind of twitchy) Well, we never really went to sleep.
Me: Oh?
Casey: Yeah...she's been having contractions all night and stuff. And they just keep getting worse.
Carl: (glancing up very casually from stirring something, eyebrow cocked) That's because you're having a baby today, son.
Casey: *blink* *blink* *dash*

Carl and I poked our heads in the bedroom, took one look at her, and advised, NOW. GO NOW. They were crammed in my mom's truck in five minutes, to the hospital in another ten, and my niece was born at 9:33 this morning-7lbs 12oz.

Dear Ava,
Way to upstage pretty much everything. You have style, kid. Style and moxy. You are something to be truly thankful for.
Aunt Mo

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

TODAY: A slice of Federal Housing Placenta-With Lawn Clippings and Cranberry.

Today, there is just not enough stuff happening. I think I may be bored.

I have a 9 AM visit from these nice folks from the Philadelphia Children's Hospital, because I am doing my duty for science by periodically donating my pregnancy stats, my saliva, the air and water from my house, etc. (Also, they will want a slice of placenta and possibly some cord blood. Later. Not now-I'm still using them.)

We are also getting a visit from an FHA inspector, who will look at our painted barn, fixed ceilings, water-sluicing landscaping, re-built front step, and re-mortared front stone wall. He will hopefully gaze upon it, see that it is good and declare, "Ye, on this 23rd day of November, let there be FHA approval."

Plus, a surveyor is dropping by to let us know exactly where our property line lies.

Because Farmer Insane?? He likes to pick random spots and say that's where the line is and then mow big furrows into the lawn that mark that line. Remind me to tell you that story sometime.

Oh. And also.

Here is the thing.

As of like, Saturday, we are doing Thanksgiving at our house. Yeah, that Thanksgiving. With the 17 people and the stuffing and the beautifully candle-lit home (HAHA), for the first time ever at our place.

So...I'm thinking lots of manic between now and Thursday night.

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Definition of Sharing

Erin: Do you know where my face wash is?

Me: um....yeah. I borrowed it and it's in my bathroom.

Erin: How about my lint roller....and my nail polish remover?

Me: Did I not get these things back into your room before you noticed they were gone?

Erin: No.

Me: So. Busted.


Carl: Hey...aren't those Mo's slippers??

Erin: Yup. Sweet memory foam revenge...

Friday, November 19, 2010


What about the extra $12,000??

This is the part of the show where someone notices the announcement for the talent show, where the prize is exactly $12,000. Then we enter this talent show, dance around with jazz hands, and win Win WIN!

Stay tuned for the glitter-fabulous conclusion to our homeownership escapade!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Pregnant Lady Terror-Vision

During the Labor Festival Barn Painting Party, when I was not riding around on my Unicorn of Kumbaya (Kumbayunicorn?) through bubbles of happy-sunshine-friendship feelings, and when I couldn't quite manage to close my eyes hard enough, there was also THIS:

Apparently unfazed by 70-foot ladders and scaffolding, everyone made it through the weekend unscathed. I don't know if you know this, but pregnancy makes your emotions somewhat unpredictable and volatile. Sometimes with tears. I made it through with a little help from pie and spinach dip.

(At some point, I broke down and cracked a beer, because OMG, the horror.)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

With A Little Help From Our Friends...

This is how it all went down.

We went to court, and The Man says that we are right, contracts do exist for a reason, and yes, we are entitled to buy our house when we have a contract of sale and $72,000 invested. (YAY!)

However. In order to get Farmer Insane to agree that the sky is blue without going through a bunch more legal junk, we made a crappy deal where he gets more money. Also, one of the other faces of The Man also dictates that in order to buy the house, we must pull off some magic tricks around the property to make it habitable and worthy in the eyes of The Man.

This is the part in the show where we momentarily despair, and the cutest of us all buries her face in her hands, wailing, "How are we ever going to paint the entire barn and come up with an extra $12,000 in just three weeks?"

(What does barn paint have to do with the habitability of our house? IF YOU KNOW, PLEASE TELL ME.)

Ever intrepid, and not easily daunted by The Man, we decided that this is all totally doable. Crossing our fingers and hoping that our collective sarcasm and offensive sense of humor has charmed and not alienated everyone we know, we put out a call to our friends and family to come for a barn painting party (or, as my propaganda-minded cousin Dylan put it, a "labor festival"). We promised beer, punch, and pie to those willing to lend a hand. And, my dudes, people came.

All weekend, we were like the Amish-except with blasting stereos and paint sprayers. Folks pitched in and helped a neighbor to make this happen:



We are talking about eighteen adults (plus five enthusiastic kids) and approximately 6000 square feet of painting covered in two days. (The lovely Mary even painted the birdhouse white and green to match.) People just rock. Or they really like pie and free beer. Mostly, they rock.

I sit in awe and gratitude at the kindness that came our way this past weekend. Thank you, friends, from every corner of our hearts. If you need a cup of sugar, or help moving, or help hiding incriminating evidence, or someone to feed your terrifying exotic pets while you are away-you know who to call.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Friends Thanksgiving

If you don't do this in your life, you are missing out on some huge chunks of joy that turkey can bring. It is a lot like regular Thanksgiving-sitting around with the eating and the drinking-but with some major differences, because cooking and drinking with your friends is fun.

We are talking all of the gravy and stuffing you can shove in your gob, with none of the drunk uncles or mom-guilt about how much you are drinking or when the grandchildren will magically appear. (these last two are obviously not about me.) No snits over burned biscuits or late turkey. More like extensive scientific discussions over whether the stuff in the measuring cup is fat or drippings (it was fat) over massive infusions of spinach dip.

You even have free reign to bring your weird walnut sweet-potato apple clove crisp thing without your cousins giving you the side-eye because it is not the whipped yams with marshmallows that we have all eaten every year for our entire lives.

Side note-squash soup with coconut and bananas sprinkled on top=NOM NOM NOM.

Plus, huge emphasis on pie. Baked goods have become a very important part of my life this year, as this year has been a big angst bath with stress bubbles. And I have not been able to take the edge off with know, because of the fetus, so for me, this was a great idea:

Give a pie to three chicks, two of them pregnant, one of them drunk, and this is what happens:

Thanks go out to Nick and Mary, for having your friends over and main-lining us the (awesome!) gravy and turkey on Saturday, and to Steph, for baking the kick-ass pie. You guys rock my face off.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Let's Have a Baby Shower!

This was all my mom's idea. My sister and I tried to protest that second babies don't usually have showers, and it is, in fact, the second baby for both of us. She had a lot of half-explained reasons why we should have a shower...something about, "Jaimie's having a girl and you're having a boy, so it's like a whole new thing for both of you, so-" She then said "psh" a lot, waved us away, and planned a shower/lunch anyway. We should have known that trying to stop her would be an entirely pointless endeavor. How often do you get two pregnant daughters at the same time? Like, never.

(Wendy is pretty much convinced that this party was for her. She was kind of confused that there was not an actual shower, but immensely pleased with the princess bubble bath my Aunt Stacey brought her.)

I didn't expect presents. But there was presents. And toasting. I love my mom.

However, I somehow got away with not wearing a baby-shower party hat made from the scraps and ribbons from the presents. HA!

Jaimie is a nicer person than I am, though, so she wore hers.

It was quite a nice day with our family and close friends. True to form, my stepdad busted out two lasagnas. He is Italian. Every holiday/party/snow day requires either meatballs or lasagnas. I am not complaining.

Also? Not complaining about the bangin' escarole soup by Rose, the bacon-wrapped jalapeno poppers by Casey, or the two (TWO!) chocolate cakes. And then there's this:

Someone spent an hour Sunday morning cracking herself up mixing frosting and food coloring, looking for acceptable areola and nipple colors for her boobie pops.

(someone is me)

Thank you everyone, for celebrating our babies with us! Have a boobie pop?