Saturday, August 29, 2009

BAKE IT DOWN 2009

I work with the college fellowship at my church and I create events that will offer the college kids a time to hang out every now again. (You know, to keep them off drugs and such. ;)) I've been doing this since I graduated from college in 2002. It's hard coming up with new ideas. BAKE IT DOWN 2009 was one of those ideas and it was a raging success!

It began with dinner. Feeding college-aged boys means that you're feeding twice as many people. Pasta was the only way to go. Special thanks for Yeeeee for helping me out greatly. We would not have eaten without her.

Our dinner menu:
Cubed, Hacked Caprese Salad
Italian Baked Chicken and Pastina
Mixed Greens Salad
Mashed Potatoes
Crostini

The result:
- Hacked Caprese Salad was good to me (I even made my own pesto), but I don't think it worked for my audience. Next time I'll kick up the seasoning a bit though.
- Chicken and Pastina was GREAT. Much love to Giada.
- Mashed Potatoes and Mixed Greens are in my usual repertoire so it was fine.
- Crostini: easy and tasty! Great when topped with caprese salad.

I knew in advance that it'd be harder to rally excitement if people had to think of their recipes and bring their own ingredients, so I chose the three recipes and brought all the ingredients. I made sure to choose things that would be easy because you never know where people with their baking skills. We are lucky enough to have a rec room downstairs with a full kitchen so along with the convection oven and the shoebox's oven, we had access to three ovens.

I printed out multiple copies of each recipe, folded them up into a bowl, and asked people to pick. (Random organization of teams were a good call, until a couple of boys migrated towards the cookies because they thought it'd be the "hardest to mess up." Apparently, it's not. ;))

Yeeeee got a KitchenAid mixer for her 16th birthday and brought it along to help. Love!



The recipes:
Classic Brownie (Team members: Tweedle Mo, Tweedle D, Geek Squad)



William Sonoma Chocolate Chip Cookie (Team members: Yeeeee, Timmy Bruin, KuKu, KaiYay)



Flower Cupcakes (Team members: Yippee, Eleven, The Man)



Floaters: Me, Energy, Mr. Single, K

The result:
- The Classic Brownie is SO VERY FABULOUS. Please go make your own batch now. And then send me a batch.
- The Chocolate Chip Cookie was overwhelmed by our creativity and gluttony. We defeated by doubling the dose of chocolate chips AND adding the walnuts. This is what happens when boys make cookies.
- Flower cupcakes with cream cheese frosting are also drool-worthy. Sweet with a touch of tart. (Though not everyone liked the tart - I thought they were grrrrrreat.)

During the downtime, we kept occupied with Bang and other activities. Mostly, the team baking made great conversation and everyone seemed to have fun. Overall, it was GREAT and when you have 14 people helping with clean up, it goes down pretty quickly. Officially check this one off as a SUCCESS. Thanks to everyone who came!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Take a look, it's in a book!

I'm feeling much better than I was yesterday. Thanks y'all. :) Ephesians 5:18-21 has been an encouragement to me.

I've been spending time by the pool and trying to read. There are three books I'm currently reading. I don't know why I don't just sit down and finish one of them.



I love books. Not necessarily to read them but I just love the touch of them. A library and windows like this would be divine. :)



Any other suggestions for books I should crack open?

Monday, July 6, 2009

It IS that bad.

Warning: illogical vent drafted in a low moment of the day ahead

I don't really want to blog about this but I can't seem to get around it. Unemployment sucks.

I'm driving myself crazy trying to figure out ways to save money. Luxuries have been put on hold until the next paycheck comes but some days I see my way of living is actually changing. I'm putting a lot of pressure on myself because - well - I brought this upon us. This makes me sad but I also know I'm learning a lot. Mainly, I'm learning to be satisfied.

I heard about The Dung Sisters on the radio today. They're a group of women who banded together during their unemployment to support one another. It helped a lot to hear them saying things I'm feeling. When I need a chuckle, I turn to Loldogs.



I don't want to say much more other than it is tough and I'm struggling. Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Splish Splash

For those of you who've had the privilege of meeting Louie, you know that he is one stinky mutha. It doesn't matter how often we wash him, brush his teeth, get his teeth cleaned, feed him greenies, etc. - his breath is HAWT.

We take Louie to Bathe R Doggie for all of our washing needs. They have full-service grooming as well as tubs for self-service. Since we're currently pinching pennies, K has taken the responsiblity of washing Louie. You would think that I could wash Louie at home in our bathtub but we've tried and its a hot mess.

I took Louie for a scrub down today he acted like a total baby. He clung to me as I watered him down and didn't want to let go.



Excuse the giant sized picture. I want you to get the full affect of his fear :) I think I'll leave the bathing to K from now on.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

I am loved.

I recently wrapped up a school year's worth of service in my church's youth group. I have been serving in the college group since I graduated from college but spent a year with the youth to provide some stability and programming. Now that they have Captain at the helm, I'm moving back to be with the college kids. They've been providing me with a send-off undeserved by the short amount of time that I've put in with them.

This post is a big hug and thanks to everyone for every ounce of love y'all have been pouring into me. It's more than I ever deserved and I am so touched and grateful for all of this love. 'Tis the grace of God, indeed.

Elephant put together this book for me on Blurb. It's a book full of pictures and notes from the kids. So perfectly put together and perfect for me.



Nods made me this adorable photo cube with a sweet note and a photo of us. Thanks Nods!! I can't wait to hear about what happens on your trip!


A group of gals made me this heart to remind me that they puffy heart me foreva. ;)



Captain and his wife topped it off with a fabulous book and gift card to nordies. Wheeee!!!

A bazillion for the cards, notes, and skits!

We love because He first loved us. (1 John 4:19)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Project Revisited

I loved Project Runway. I love Tim Gunn. I don't know why they stopped doing the show. I have no clue why they replaced it with The Fashion Show. I've only seen it once or twice and I don't understand the difference. America gets to vote? Please explain. Do you watch/love it?

Project Runway made me want to learn how to sew. I have visions of myself whipping up clothes for myself and Louie. How amazing would that be?! You may remember me ranting on about the same vision over a year ago. But yesterday brought this dream a step closer to reality. Mama MOH gave me a sewing machine!!! She bought it awhile ago at Target but later realized that it was nearly identical to the machine she already owned. Since Target does not take returns after 90 days, she decided to give it to me!! YAY!!!!

This has given my summer renewed purpose. I spotted these sewing patterns and am super duper excited.



They even have patterns called Sewing Patterns for Dummies. I can manage that, right?

If you have any tips for a newby on a sewing machine or instructional books to recommend, holla at me. Big ups to Mama MOH!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Name this dress!

Check out the dress of the girl on the right of the bride. That patchwork one. When I first saw this dress in person, I DIED. 




I have not stopped thinking about it. Do you know who designed it? I think it was D&G but I'm not sure. I've been googling for ages and nada. Not that I could ever afford it but I just want to know. Of course it helped that the girl wearing the dress is absolutely gorgeous. (All of the Turkish people are this wedding were gorgeous. Must be something in the water over there.)

And the bride's dress is pretty awesome too. The entire day, beautiful Turkish people floated in fanciful dresses. Really awesome.

All pictures taken by Sweet Monday Photography.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Published!

I got three copies of the knot southern california magazine in the mail with the best.wedding.ever inside.


Ours! ;) 

All credit goes to Jasmine Star, lifestyle photographer of fabulous people. Words cannot tell how much I love her. All of the other people who made the day beautiful are listed in the links under "the 3.15.08 all-star team." 

One more morsel of wedding bliss. Yummy.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

PSA #4

LAUSD has cancelled summer school for all elementary and middle schools. High schools will still offer summer school for credit recovery only.

*happy dance*

I wasn't planning on working anyway but I've been working the last few weeks to prepare permission slips, schedules, etc.. There is an insane amount of paperwork so this is a nice relief. It'll be tough for people who were counting on the extra dough, but at least our paychecks are split equally over 12 months nowadays.

Now ... what to do with 6 weeks off? :)

Actually, I'm still on the hunt for my next gig. It's only been a year. Job searching sucks.

*sad dance*


Monday, May 25, 2009

The Commutative Property

In 2004, I vowed to never shop at A&F. My friend was involved in a lawsuit against them and at that time, it was the first time I had known anyone to be so personally affected by discrimination. It was the right thing to do. Prior to this, my closet was full of A&F gear. 

When Hollister opened a couple years later, it took awhile for me to get the memo: it's the same company.

Gilly Hicks gave itself away with its patio furniture and half-naked kids in front of the store.

At the Americana, I stumbled into RUEHL. As soon as I walked in, I was confused. It was dark and the store was separated into small rooms. I looked at the clothes and was tempted. I had a feeling that was confirmed when a kid said to me, "Have you visited Gilly Hicks?" I said no, turned around, and followed the light at the end of the hallway.

Nice try, Mr. Jeffries.

On another note, Austin is now involved in an awesome project. Check him out at The Recess Ends.



Sunday, May 24, 2009

Nothing to wear

I was determined to buy something today. There's currently nothing to wear in my closet. Literally. It's a good thing tomorrow is Memorial Day because I'd have to show up to work in my birthday suit. I'm not exaggerating. at all. 

Over lunch, Yippee Ki Yay had told me about their visit to the new Promenade so I had to see for myself. For some reason, the set up reminds me of the Century City mall. It's nothing spectacular but I did enjoy lounging on the furniture. None of the new stores interested me and so I bought nothing.

 

I soothed myself with a treat from ce fiore. Sad.

I scoped out the Nordstrom's sale and found a lovely clutch that sadly, even after 40% off, was still too expensive. Went back to visited it three times. I inspected it, petted it, and had to let it go. Very sad.

Determined to not be naked tomorrow, I hit up the Americana. I hadn't been there since it first opened. When I got there, I remember why I avoided it. Crowds GALORE. Glad I braved it because I was able to restock my uniform for the summer. Had to buy a pretty frivolous treat 
to keep from like a complete frump.




I'm not sure how I'll wear this. I just liked it a lot. 'Twas the perfect cherry on top of the day.

Have a good day! hope you have the day off tomorrow!


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

What's up, Doc?

**MARLEY AND ME SPOILER BELOW**

We've decided to get some pet insurance for the Louiemeister. He is getting older (turned 7 in March!) and we figured we'd lock in an insurance rate now in case anything happens farther down the line. Truth be told, ever since I watched Marley and Me, I've not stopped thinking about the day when Louie will stop living. Let's not talk about that now. (BTW, That was my "spoiler." Better safe than sorry.) 

Decided to purchase through VPI and they require an all-over check up. Thanks to yelp, we found Animal Medical Hospital. Previously, Louie had been going to TLC, but they want to perform too many procedures on minor things. At AMH, everyone is really friendly and laid back. Perhaps a bit too much. The vet gave Louie a once over and took some blood to test. No temperature taken, no stethoscope used = not a real medical check up, IMO. I also didn't like that they took Louie to another room to take his blood. As we were leaving, the receptionist commented on what great condition Louie was in even though he is a senior. A SENIOR?! My baby? I don't think so. (Denial is my BFF.)

Blood test results came back today I'm happy to report Louie is in perfect health, with the exception of a bit too much plaque on his molars. He's due for his teeth cleaning.

If anyone had recommendations for a vet that will treat my dog like a person, let me know! :)


Monday, May 18, 2009

Concentration, Concentration is the Game

One of the joys of working with fellowships at church is that I get to participate in a myriad of group games. Teens and Tweens don't love group games. To get them as excited (read: crazy) as myself, I like to make things competitive. It's more fun when at least one person is yelling like a madwoman. :)

So last Friday was Animal Concentration. There's a big circle of people. Before the game starts, each person is assigned an animal. Everyone begins clapping out a rhythm: knee slap, knee slap, clap, snap. On the snap, one person says the name of his own animal, on the next snap, the same person says the name of another person's animal. This second person repeats this process. The whole time, everyone in the circle is keeping the rhythm. If you mess up the rhythm or miss the snap, you're out. Sounds simple, but is apparently super difficult for people because of the rhythm. (We never actually got people to say the animal on the snap.)

The game was fun. Per the usual, I was 110% into the game. People were trying to get me out and did not succeed. I was wearing pants and when I changed into my pajamas, I saw this:



I gave myself bruises, on both legs, while keeping rhythm for Animal Concentration.
The best part: this is the second or third time this has happened.

You have my permission to LOL at my expense. Have a good day. :)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

I guess we can't.

BAH.

As you may have heard, UTLA was planning a 1-day work stoppage tomorrow. I was all ramped up, ready to rally. Images of fist pumps and chants of "Si se puede" marched through my brain. This Cal bear loves herself any bit of people mobilization. 

To try to lessen the disruption to the school day, our local district had decided to make tomorrow a minimum day. Parents were told school would let out at 12:50.

But on Tuesday, a judge issued a temporary restraining order on the job action. BOO YOU, JUDGE.

Ramon Cortinez issued a memo decreeing Friday a regular work day and told all schools that they would not approve any minimum days. BOO YOU, MR. CORTINEZ.

On Wednesday, UTLA decided to obey the judge's order and instead, we will be picketing for one-hour before school and heading to a rally at the LAUSD Beaudry building downtown after school. (That's a heads up for your downtown folks.) It's just not the same. BOO YOU, UTLA. Ok, not really since if we did go through with the work stoppage, there was the possibility of a $1000 (very likely) fine or revocation of credential (not so likely, but still scary).

So a heads up to all LAUSD parents/students: tomorrow is business as usual.

BOO.







Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Monday Night Dinners

At le shoebox, we try to hold Monday Night Dinners (MND). It's an open invitation to people to come, eat a home-cooked meal and hang out. We do it as a constant reminder to ourselves that what we have is a gift from God and we want to use it to bless others.

It started as a routine between Ruby and me, but has been known to include a few others in the process. I've come to really enjoy MND.

The rules for MND are as follows:

1) Dinner is served between 6:30 and 7. Specific time depends on people who are coming. 

2) People who make it a more frequent habit to come have been bringing contributions. You can bring anything you want. Fruit is a popular first-time contribution. We love fruit at le shoebox. If you become a veteran like Ruby, you may consider contributing a main dish. You're welcomed to bring it cooked or I will help you cook it if you bring the ingredients. This doesn't apply when you're coming directly from work. We understand.

3) Magician's Biggest Secrets Finally Revealed comes on at 9 P.M. Don't touch the remote. ;)

This past Monday, Eleven outdid himself and brought us fried catfish and some fabulous chicken. So scrumptious!! Ruby brought watermelon and Carry On brought us a bag of candy ... wrappers. She claims she was bringing us candy but ate it in the process. At least she saved the wrappers? *shrug* There were two boxes of M&Ms in there as well, but now I'm scared to eat them.

I decided to make pot roast. Apparently I like pretending that le shoebox is actually le sauna. Freakin' A.

I'm also in a new phase where I put way too much salt in everything. I just grab a handful and throw it in. Sigh.

We've found that 4 guests is optimal. So if you're in the hood on a Monday, feel free to drop by! Will have to remember to snap some pictures next week.


Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!!

Neither of my mothers read this, but HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY to all the mommies out there.

At church, Mama Shhhh and Auntie D shared about their journey on the road of motherhood. I love hearing about other people's child-rearing experiences, mainly because I can't fathom how I'll actually deal with my own flesh and blood. My interaction with children has been limited to running them like an army. :)

Every year, it's tough to buy mother's day presents. For my own mother, Mother's Day is usually celebrated with a card. This year, I decided to get one of those Hallmark recordable cards. I thought it'd be awesome considering she lives halfway around the globe. I'm going to try to get Louie to bark for it.

"Going to try" indicates that I have yet to record the card or send it. Will call her and tell her it's on the way. "Will call" also shows I haven't called. Me = worst daughter ever.

Mumsy (Kev's mom) is easier to shop for but never wants for anything. So we got her a pot of strawberry plants


photo from Smith & Hawken

I chose it mainly because I loved the pot. I'm not even sure if the strawberries will materialize. Unlike the photo, there are no tiny strawberries hanging off our plant yet. 'Twas also wonderful because they had one in the store already planted with the strawberry plants. Perfect for me. Me = laziest daughter ever.


Saturday, May 9, 2009

le shoebox update

At le shoebox, we finally got some shutters in the bedroom and dining nook. This prevents us from waking up with the sun at 7 A.M. on a Saturday. This makes me very happy. Over Spring Break, I added a photo wall into the mix.





I followed Winnie's directions and used this article as inspiration. I think I need a few more frames. I like displays to be big. Would also like to add a big letter and maybe removing some of the frames for some small canvases (or something with more texture) to mix it up a bit.

I like these letters from anthropologie but for nearly $100, I think I'll wait.



I'm in the process of filling out the frames, obviously. I just chose my favorite wedding picture and am looking for other pictures/prints to fill up the rest. But as lazy as I've been, that may not happen for awhile.


Friday, May 8, 2009

It's a beautiful morning

I ordered my usual large ice-blended vanilla coffee at Coffee Bean today. I dish out the cash and the barista offers to jumbo size my order. Why, of course! He proceeds to hand me a cup that is the size of my head and won't even fit in the cup holder of the car. So fabulous. Love him to pieces.



I also got to wear jeans to work today. AND it's a minimum day. 12:50 dismissal, y'all. Holllaaaa!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

gettin' my betty crocker on

I made chicken marsala last night. From scratch. Got the recipe from smitten kitchen and it tasted awesome. K loved it. *high five self* Oh, but please don't tell K that there was nearly an entire stick of butter in it. He'd die. Thanks.

So tonight I'm trying shepherd's pie. (Recipe from Food Network) Why, oh why, would I make shepherd's pie when it's 90 degrees out? *bangs head against wall* We'll see how it goes. I am - at the moment - sweltering in the heat from nature and from the oven. FAIL.

*eats dinner*

Verdict: Shepherd's pie is fine. Nothing stellar. Kinda bland, not sure what I did wrong. Maybe shepherd's pie is supposed to taste that way? I'm not sure. It is comforting in the stomach though ... even in 90 degree weather. :)











Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Oh baby, yooooooou

The brain power behind Heineken's recent commercials could be my BFF. This latest one is DA BOMB. I sing along everytime. 




I received my renewal notice for Broadway LA's 2010 season. In the spirit of going green, they sent out renewal emails instead of brochures. Kudos!


I'm undecided about renewing for next season. The only show I really want to see is The Color Purple and the bank account has not been as robust as in seasons past. 

We'll see.

Monday, May 4, 2009

One more day

I woke this morning and my brain begged me to take the day off. I have been standing on tippy toes on the brink of illness and mornings are tough.

But, sadly, I knew this would not be possible.

I had a conference with The Boss regarding my attendance recently. This was supposed to be kick in the pants. I'm "allowed" 10 days each school year, and have missed 9 days. Technically, I've missed 8 full days but The Boss likes to tallies the minutes and hours that when someone is late or leaves early until it adds up to something substantial enough to actually affect pay. My coworker once got docked for leaving 7 minutes early because his plumbing had busted and his house was flooding. True story.

I've never missed this many days in one school year. Usually I'm out about 3 days but as you know, this year has been tough. I have almost 2 months' worth of sick time saved up, but while I have them, the expectation is that no one is out more than 10 days in a school year. There are things like verbal warnings, conferences, written memos that go in your file when you've been naughty. But as many of you know from reading this LA Times article, none of this really matters.

But I guess it does because while I wanted to give the day the fist bump a la Ross, I rolled out of bed for another day. me = dork.


Sunday, May 3, 2009

Happy Birthday, K!

Tomorrow is K's birthday but we celebrated over the weekend with a BBQ at le shoebox. The great thing about le shoebox is that there is a pool and BBQ area. Otherwise, the party would have consisted of K, Louie, myself, and half of another person.

A family portrait. (Photo by Cheesda)



I was extremely grateful that it did not rain and that it was actually warm for a part of the day. No one dived into the pool except for E-Money. Even then 'twas the jacuzzi, but a good time was had by all. 

E-Money splish splashing. (Photo taken by Woo-Z. I think.)



Extra thumbs up goes to MOH, Jack in the Box, and Papa Shhhh for helping out!

K isn't much of a birthday celebrator, so we'll probably go out to dinner at his favorite restaurant tomorrow and call it a year. :)

Friday, May 1, 2009

Test. Teach. Repeat.

Found this conversation in the NY Times to be interesting. It's 5 perspectives/solutions to testing in schools.

As state testing comes upon us at this time of year, it's all I can think about. It's all we talk about. It wears me out. It really is as bad as they say it is.

*shakes fish at No Child Left Behind*

The Pres wants to institute merit pay. Will need to research this. I'm all for accountability as someone acknowledges that there is a limit to what teachers are able to accomplish with any one student. I'm no Jaime Escalante, but I work hard and I don't always get the desired results. Please don't dock my pay. Teaching kids isn't the same as churning out car sales.

On a brighter note, we're having a bbq/pool party for K's birthday today. Just yesterday, weather.com said there was a 60% chance of rain. Today it's O%. God is awesome.

It's nice to be a kindergartener.

- Numbers, as you know it, end at 100.
- $1 is a lot of money.
- You work all day for a sticker and that's enough to keep you satisfied.
- Juice and cookies are the cat's meow.
- You can confidently say to anyone, "I did a good job today." A hug/high five/pat on the back is sure to follow.

Spent some time with some little ones today and had fun. Don't think I traumatized them too much either. :)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Fast Rent

At the end of the 30-Hour famine, I broke my fast with this:



Alberto's super fries and costco pizza. So very tasty.

I hadn't skipped more than one meal prior to the famine so it was definitely challenging for me. The first 6 hours were the toughest, especially considering that I couldn't squeeze a full meal in before the start of the famine in at 12 noon. I discovered that minute maid home-squeezed lemonade is incredibly filling. We spent Saturday washing cars and handing out sodas with a church in Hawthorne. I learned that it's hard to give away free sodas and waters. How is it that even after several hours of physical activity and 20+ hours of fasting, the kiddos wanted to play games when we got back to church?! I wanted to die, but participated anyway. :) (love you all!)

Right after I stuffed my face with fries and pizza, I ran off to the Pantages for Rent



'Twas a special treat because Rent wasn't a part of the package of season tickets but GreenPeace was able to grab some tickets when they extended the show. GreenPeace and I can recite Rent in its entirety. I'm Mark, she's Roger.

If you're able, GO SEE RENT! Adam Pascal and Anthony Rapp are beyond fantastic. It's as though 13 years hadn't passed at all since Rent opened on Broadway. As always, I snapped pictures of my playbill and the stage before the show started with my iPhone. 



The couple next to me were so indignant that I did so because of the bright neon sign on the stage that said "No Cameras. No Cell Phones." The man said, "Oh, but I guess a camera and phone combo is OK."

Ah, shut your face. But of course I just pretended no to hear him.







Tuesday, February 24, 2009

PSA

I have two tickets to Rent at the Pantages Theater for this Saturday night. Orchestra section, $85/ticket + ticketmaster charges. Let me know if you want them.


Monday, February 23, 2009

Still alive

I'm still here. Still alive. 

My job has shifted a little bit so instead of teaching small groups throughout the day, I teach 14 4th graders for half of the day. I'm basically their reading teacher. The has dragged me back into the fun of lesson plans, homework, and grades all over again.  Whee? 

Anyway, just a couple of pictures to fill the space.

the office in le shoebox. Apparently, I subconsciously love red.



This is how I've felt on most nights after work. 



I'm participating in World Vision's 30-Hour Famine this weekend. I will be fasting from 12 noon on Friday until 6 P.M. on Saturday. (I will be drinking water and juice.) I'm doing it to raise money to provide food for children in other countries. Every $30 I raise will feed a child for month. If you'd like to support me, give a holla!


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Throw Pillows

We're having a first official small gathering at le shoebox pretty soon so we've been spending a little more time on decor. We bought these throw pillows from Target. Why are throw pillows so expensive? Winnie was smart and enlisted the help of her MIL for her cute throw pillows. I'd probably do the same if I wasn't so impatient.


That's Louie sleeping in his usual spot next to the couch. That's a doggy car seat he is sleeping in. I swear we going to get him a decent bed soon. But he looks so comfortable in the car seat.





Wednesday, February 4, 2009

winner, winner chicken dinner

K had a work dinner at the Arroyo Chop House tonight so I took the opportunity to try something out. I made chicken gizzard for dinner. Don't knock it 'til you try it. But just don't google "chicken gizzard" before you try it. 

I love chicken gizzard yakitori, but K is not a fan so it was a the perfect time to give it I try.

Less than $3 at 99 Ranch. Can't beat it.



I had to use the internet to help me with this meal. I had no idea how to deal with this stuff. Everyone agrees, you have to wash the gizzards well.

I tried it 2 ways: deep fried and broiled with some of my super sweet sauce. Baked it at 350 for 25 minutes, and broiled for 5. 


Glazed in sweet goodness.


Pair it with some type of choy and rice and voila. Dinner!


Verdict: I did good. Tasted fine. =)

Deep frying it, surprisingly, was a PITA. According to this recipe, I had to "parboil" it first.



Heat was a bit too high ...


Had to boil for 15 minutes!!


Finally done and chillin' in the colander.


Toss the cooled gizzards in flour and seasonings, deep fried at medium heat for 10 minutes. 10 minutes!!



Verdict: 10 minutes was too long. Fried a bit too hard, even for my taste and I love me some fried goodness. I'd definitely make it again though. Good for a snack.



Saturday, January 31, 2009

Welcome, KFC!!!

Mr. and Mrs. Brabus welcomed KFC into the world!! 

This picture made my entire day and weekend. He's a super handsome newborn.



(I too am hoping that there was never any chicken in the bucket. =)) Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. B!!! Can't wait to meet him in person.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Rally, rally!



An incredibly exciting day for me today:
- I rode the metro rail. I've never ridden on the subway or train in LA. Nor had I been inside Union Station until today.
- I participated in the UTLA rally in downtown! Lots of shouting, fist pumping, and of course, rallying. 

Just a couple of points of clarification, as I've heard some strange things in the media:

- we're currently in contract negotiations. Those negotiations are in the fact finding stage, which is the step before a strike vote. We are also negotiating our health care, but that's still in the mediation stage. The last strike lasted for 9 days. When teachers strike, schools find subs. Subs are members of the union. (Corrected: Sorry for my mistake. I got subs mixed up with paraprofessionals in my head.)

- we are currently boycotting Tuesday after-school meetings and District periodic assessments In LAUSD, students are tested every 6 weeks for English Language Arts and once a quarter for Math. Teachers are still assessing their students. They are either using the District assessment and not inputting them into the District system or testing students with other assessments. The Ed Code only mandates that you test students, but it doesn't dictate which assessments you have to give or that you have to input the information in the District system.

I'm not a fan of striking but when dealing with a monster like LAUSD, I'd rather have another monster like UTLA on my side.



And now I can't get the chants from today's rally out of my head. Poop.