Friday, July 23, 2010

Concentrated family time

We're headed to a mountain vacation soon. And (insert smooth segue here!) I've recently been listening to Asleep at the Wheel's album "Ride with Bob." It has certainly put me in the mood for the great outdoors, even if the images it's conjuring (cowboys on horses, ambling across the evening desert against a backdrop of far off mountain ranges in various shades of gray) don't quite match our heavily forested destination.

I am SO looking forward to concentrated family time. I truly live for those moments.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

A bread pudding aficionado

bread-pudding Pictures, Images and Photos

Last night we enjoyed dinner at an (almost) local cajun restaurant. I was particularly looking forward to their bread pudding as the Internet is rife with rave reviews about that dish. Bad side, I found the bread dense and rubbery so I didn't eat much of it. Good side, I found the bread dense and rubbery so I didn't eat much of it. I much prefer the "pudding" part of bread pudding over the "bread" part, and there wasn't enough of Part 1 to please me.

I've got YEARS of experience consuming bread pudding as it's one of my favorite sweet treats. I don't make it as much as I used to, though, as no one else in my family enjoys it as much as I do. When I first met my husband I actually made it twice a month. It was MONTHS before I realized that he didn't like bread pudding and I was the only one eating it. Hmmm. No need to guess what the ramifications of that episode were...

Monday, July 19, 2010

Hula-hooping is also educational

Last Fall, my husband called his dad to tell him about a news story he just heard of a vortex created by the swallows of San Juan Capistrano. In the midst of his conversation, he looked over at our Youngest and asked him if he knew what a vortex was. To which my Youngest said, yes, he was something circular.

Since we had gone to a science museum a few days earlier, my husband mentally patted himself on the back for contributing to our son's education.

Husband: "So did you learn about a vortex from the museum? From that coin-rolling game you played there?"

Youngest: "No."

Husband: "Then how do you know about it?"

Youngest: "From hula-hooping."

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Our house smelled heavenly

Image from

Last Sunday a mystery neighbor gifted us with a dozen homegrown tomatoes. That very day, I followed this recipe and popped them in the oven for a couple of hours. They were absolutely divine.

Basically, you just quarter some tomatoes and chop some garlic. Then coat everything in olive oil, salt and pepper, arrange it all on a cookie sheet, and roast for a couple of hours. It is unbelievably yummy and easy. A perfect combination for this busy mom.

After figuring out who our benefactor was, I thanked him profusely. I was so obviously pleased with the tomatoes that he promised me more later this summer. I plan on adding minced, fresh basil to that batch!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

New web progress!

My collection of play-with-me hoops. The raggedy, mummy-like white one on the end is my very first hoop. Only two of the others are still in my house; the rest have been gifted to someone!

I enjoy hooping so much that I want to share the joy it brings with all my friends and family. As a result, I’ve made and given away many, many hula hoops to those who have expressed even the slightest interest in the activity. Not suprisingly, this practice is starting to become a wee bit expensive as there are costs associated with making hula-hoops.

To offset the financial impact of “spreading the hooping love” I’ve decided to sell the hoops at a relatively low price. This will allow me to kinda-sorta “give them away” without breaking the family bank. Of course, one thing leads to another (are you now hearing that song by The Fixx in your head?!) so I had to think of a company name and create a logo for the contact cards I intend to keep on hand, get a domain name, create a web site, etc...

We considered a variety of company names and enjoyed a LOT of giggles as we did so. Our ideas included: Hoop! There It Is! (this one STILL cracks me up!), HoopDeVille, Hoop-to-Hoop, Hoops-a-daisy, HooptyDo, HoopAndFlow, Hoopentine, The InsideHoop, TomHoopery, Hooparama, and HoopyDays. There were many, many other suggestions made because we also considered names which included “hula” HulaMonster. Get it? Hula Monster? As in, “gila monster”!!!

My number one choice was actually HoopsADaisy, but that .com domain belongs to a bridal store in the UK. So, after further consideration, I chose Alphabet’s a play on the words “Alphabet Soup,” in case you didn’t figure that out immediately. (Most people don’t/haven’t.) As this Web site is in a blog format and being a writer in my day job, the combination of “alphabet” with “hoops” seems entirely appropriate. And as a mom who pays careful attention to what her family consumes, the slight reference to food also seems very appropriate. (Well, sort of. I haven’t actually ever served Campbell’s Alphabet Soup to my kids, but in the interest of my new domain name, I’ll overlook that fact.)