February 12, 2009

Early Valentine's Day Dinner

This year I have to work on Valentine’s Day. Yes, I have to work. I know you are thinking, “Aren’t you a teacher?” Valentine’s Day is on Saturday. You don’t have to work. Well, this just proves that a teacher’s job is never done. ;o)

Some how the Powers That Be decided that I should be a sophomore class sponsor. Every year class sponsors are in charge of at least one dance. The sophomore class is responsible for the Sweetheart’s Dance which is this Saturday. That means I have to be at said dance, and I have to decorate the night before. I’m NOT looking forward to it.

I thought Big Bear might go to the dance with me. He actually laughed when I suggested it. To be honest I don’t blame him. If roles were reversed I probably wouldn’t go with him.

Needless to say our Valentine’s Day won’t be much fun. I decided that I would make a nice dinner last night to celebrate early. I found a recipe a while back for a Super Quick Tomato Basil Cream Pasta. The interesting part of this recipe is there is no cream in it! You puree cashews with the tomatoes. It is a very easy recipe to do during the week, and it is REALLY good. Ours was a little thick. I need to add a bit more water next time, the recipe suggests a few tablespoons of wine. I think I'll try that. Yum!
Sorry the pictures are very good, I couldn't find the camera so I used my phone.
For dessert I made brownies. I found a recipe for Cookie Brownies. How can you go wrong with cookies AND brownies? The recipe called for a Trader Joe mint Oreo type cookie. Two problems with that: 1. we don’t have a Trader Joe's anywhere around here and 2. neither of us care for chocolate and mint.

I wondered how these would be with the Peanut Butter Oreo cookies. The brownies were good, but we couldn't taste any peanut butter. I was a little disappointed. They were plain fudgy brownies.

Give the pasta a try! It is really good! The recipe is from VeganYumYum. Don't let the Vegan part deter you. My carnivore hubby really enjoyed this dish! :o)

February 10, 2009

Here We Go Again...

Medical Forms
Letters of Employment
Financial Paperwork
FBI Clearance
Criminal Records Clearance
These are just a few of the documents I have started to gather for our THIRD round of paper work. Don't they say, "Third time is a charm"??? Our current 797C expires on April 26. I have to have all of the paper work finished and a home visit from our new social worker within the next few weeks so that I can mail everything off before our current paper work expires.

I don't know why, but I just can't get into this this time. Round one and two I flew through the paper work trying to get it all finished and back to our social worker as soon as possible. This time, not such a big deal. I know I have a time line, but I'm not getting all flustered about it this time. Am I getting wiser or just burned out?

February 6, 2009

Gate Mystery Solved

Remember this post about the dogs getting out.  Well, we've figured out the problem.  A little story first.

For the last two weeks we've had a VERY UNINVITED visitor in the dogs' pen.  Big Bear and I were awoken early one snowy morning to the sound of a dog barking, not one of our dogs.  I said that I thought the dog was in the dog pen, he said that was impossible.  I got up to look and sure enough there was a big golden retriever in our backyard.

We didn't put too much thought into I went down to let the big guy out.  Once I got down there I realized that it was a very troublesome dog that roams the neighborhood.  There have been a lot of complaints about him.  

Over the last two weeks this PITA (Pain In The A$$) has gotten locked in the backyard six times.  PITA crawls under a loose area in the fence, but then he can't get out.  He doesn't do it when the dogs are out, only when they are inside.  When our dogs are out he runs the fence with them.   So once he gets in he wants out.  He stands out there and barks until someone lets him out.  This in-turn drives my dogs absolutely NUTS!

I have put logs on both sides of the fence where he is digging in.  PITA can physically move them out of the way - ON BOTH SIDES OF THE FENCE!

This morning PITA once again was in the backyard.  Big Bear was watching him from the office window.  That was when our Gate Mystery was solved.  Big Bear saw PITA trying to lift the latch, but he can't now that it's padlocked!  I stood and watched PITA for a while.  That little bugger actually didn't want to wait for us.  He crawled out under another loose spot the fence.  I don't know how to keep him out!!  What a PITA!!!!

Oh Sure!  He looks sweet and innocent.  I won't deny he is a beautiful dog, smart too!

BUT!  He is a weird dog to break into a fenced yard!!

February 5, 2009

Chinese New Year Parade

Big Bear and I had a great time last weekend in Chicago. We drove up early Saturday morning. We spent the afternoon shopping on Michigan Ave.  Then we went to Ditka's for dinner.  It was so much fun!

Sunday we headed to Chinatown.  We couldn't believe how crowded it was.  Unfortunately we didn't get to do any shopping, it was just too crowded.  It gives us an excuse to go back this spring!  :)

We went to a Dim Sum restaurant Sunday.  No one told us what to do or how to order.  We had no clue.  Ladies with carts of food would come to the table and ask if we wanted this or that.  At first we kept saying yes, HA!  Then we learned the trick, luckily before we had a huge table of food.  My all time favorite were the sesame balls.  I don't know what they are made of, I don't know if I want to know, but they were good!

We have so many fun pictures I couldn't decide.  The pictures I took from my phone.  Can you believe I forgot my camera, again!?!  Luckily my brother brought his camera!  You can tell which are which.  I decided to just put them in a slide show.  I didn't want to bore you all with lots of pictures.  Some of them are quite fun!

After the parade Big Bear and I headed home.  We were supposed to get a lot of snow on Monday, but it didn't happen until Tuesday!  

We had so much fun at the parade - actually the entire weekend - that we will probably do this often.  I can't wait to take Polar Cub one day!