Not Ron
Meaghan is walking around freaking us out, mostly because she just sneaks up behind people and waits for them to notice. From the corner of my eye, I’d swear it was really Ron.

We skipped Sunday dinner this week.

It was relatively quiet here, and I made this chicken dish that has no name, because it changes depending what I serve it with. This time, I made it soupy, so it was chicken stew.

I took two boneless chicken breasts, chopped them up good and sauteed them in a little oil. You could use some leftover cooked chicken or tofu, I guess. Garlic too, if you like. While they were going, I peeled & chopped a few potatoes. Tossed them in the pan with a couple onions and enough water to cover. When they were done and I stirred it up good to get all the crispies from the chicken off the bottom of the pan, I added some frozen mixed vegetables and brought it back to a boil.

Now here’s where you get fancy. If you want it thick, drain off some of the liquid. (Oh, and turn the burner off or down to min.) I usually dip a large glass measuring cup in, so the liquid is reserved in case I need to add some back in. Open up a can or two of cream-of-whatever soup and toss that in. Cream of celery is our standby, and I like to sprinkle in some sage. You could sprinkle in some curry for a mild version of curry.

I had a second smaller pot going with everything but the chicken, just for Meaghan.

For soup or stew, you can leave the liquid thin (or add water if you need to) and serve with biscuits, bread or even toss in some dumplings. Thickened up, and you can call it Chicken a la King and serve it in biscuit cups. (Take the biscuit dough and line muffin tins with it, bake as usual.) Popovers go well with this, or you could toss the mixture in a pie crust for pot pies.

Want to beta test software?

I got this in my email the other day. Looks good, sounds good, so sign up if you’re interested.

“My Reward Board” Beta Test Program

As parents we all struggle to get our kids to do the things they should (or need to) do. Some tasks are practical, like helping with dishes or doing homework, while others are behavioral, like not teasing a sibling. The reason we care at all (beyond the benefits of a clean room!) is that we want our kids to grow into responsible, healthy and happy adults.

That’s where My Reward Board fits in. With reward coupons, fun animations and achievement certificates, this unique program turns chores and goals into fun and games. Before long your kids will be striving every day to do their best as they eagerly await the end of the week and their star points reward. The program is very configurable in order to accommodate different parenting styles.

Participants will receive a free copy of the program when it’s released in 1-2 months.

The only requirements for participation are that you have children ages 5 to 12, and a Pentium II (or better) computer, running at 400 mhz (or faster), with the Windows operating system (Windows 98 or later).

If you agree to help out, the most important thing we ask is that you use the program frequently, try out all of the features, and give us as much feedback as possible. The first priority is to find and fix any bugs (problems) in the program, but we also want to hear your ideas on what you like and what could be added or changed to make it better.

If you’d like to apply please send an email to: beta @

Thank you very much for your time!

We have the best dentist EVER

He just called us personally to check on how Emma was doing. Plus, I got him to explain some more of what he did and he offered to go over her chart more thoroughly next time we were in.

And remember how I said he sings? He even danced for Emma. 😀 She said the nurses were nice, too, just like Addison told her.

Emma update

Finally we are back! Everything went well, Emma is feeling fine. Three extractions, a bunch of crowns, some cleaned up spots and whatever else he said fell out with the rest of my brains, because just then they had wheeled Emma out and all I cared about was going to my baby.
She was some cranky when she first woke up.
Two hours later, she was her usual smiles, telling the nurses “I love you” as well as “thank-you” and walking out the door.

See ya on Monday, I’m wiped.

Even more forgetful, and a backstory or two.

So yesterday, I was on the phone to my mom, relating the part below where I forgot my age. She interrupted my tale with, “Wait a minute – how old are you again?” I started in to the whole, we have to stop and think what year it is, and it is it before April or not, when she interrupted again, “No, don’t tell me! Because then I’ll have to think about how old *I* am.”

This reminded me of all the times I ever asked my father how old he was, and he always answers 39. Every single time it takes me roughly five full minutes for me to go, “Hey wait a minute..”

I’m catching up to him.


Also below, my Aunt Tammy asked if the pencil sharpener was Papa’s and yes, it was. Or is. It’s still kicking around here somewhere, as we didn’t want to hang it off our nice walls, and it’s pretty dented from being kicked around.

That was also the summer I went to visit my Aunt Boo for the first time, lugging my family with me. I was hugely pregnant with Meaghan, so now whenever 3 or 4 years pass and we see each other again, Leroy (her husband) leans down and whispers to her, “Why does Andrea look different?”

At least, I assume that’s something like what he says, because I often hear her stage-whisper back, “For God’s SAKE, Leroy, she’s NOT PREGNANT ANY MORE!”