Tag Archives: fail

Have some teriyaki sauce with that apple braid

Last week, I went to the grocery store, as usual. I bought a dozen eggs, three cans of tomato sauce, some cinnamon and some teriyaki sauce for stir fry. I came home and opened my food cupboard doors and tried to put these items in (except the eggs) and they came flying back out, along with a number of other items already in the cupboard, including tomato sauce, cinnamon and teriyaki sauce. The eggs, I put in the refrigerator…on top of two other cartons of eggs.

Roy picked up the two bottles of cinnamon spice from the floor and asked, “Why did you buy more of things you already have? They won’t fit in the cupboard as it is.”

“That’s the problem,” I began defensively, “I don’t have enough cupboard space and that means I don’t know what I have, so I buy more of it. I should really have a pantry.”

“If we had a pantry, you’d have enough stuff in it to survive a nuclear holocaust and the zombie apocalypse,” he predicted. “Clean out these cupboards and use some of what we have.”

I threw a package of butterscotch pudding at his retreating back. It’s okay, I could spare it since I have four others and that one was expired anyway.

I’ve always had a reputation as a bit of a hoarder, but it’s really only because I’m disorganized. Without telling Roy that he was right, I decided to go ahead and clean those cupboards and get an inventory. That way, I could plan meals around what I have. Makes sense, doesn’t it? Cupboards were cleaned and the first meal from the contents of it was on the table that evening.

“What’s this?” Roy said, approaching the table with caution. “I smell…well, I can’t really decide what I smell.”

“I made a little sauce for the chicken,” I told him proudly. “I made it with the ingredients of the cupboard and a few eggs…I seem to have a lot of eggs.”

We sat down to the meal and Roy took several manful bites before he put down his knife and fork in some haste.

“Okay, I’m not sure what’s in your sauce, but the flavors don’t seem to be working together,” he began, feeling his way cautiously through this food mine field.

“I used powdered sugar, dry brown rice, brown sugar, teriyaki sauce and pumpkin pie spice,” I said. “It’s a daring combination.”

Before I was done giving him the list, he was up and scraping his plate in the garbage. “Why in the world would you use a combination like that?” his face was screwed up in distaste.

“I had three bags of brown rice, five bottles of teriyaki sauce, a container and three more bags of brown sugar and eight of those containers of pumpkin pie spice,” I answered unhappily, adding, “You said use what I have.”

“And the powdered sugar?” he asked testily, patently ignoring my attempt to shift the blame onto him. “Why did you put that in?”

“I have three bags in the cupboard and about eight more in the freezer,” I said, counting on my fingers, “I could coat the entire driveway with a layer of powdered sugar.”

“Maybe you should,” he said through gritted teeth as he made himself a peanut butter sandwich…using the only jar of peanut butter I had.

“Oh, no! I need some to frost the apple braids we are having for dessert,” I answered brightly.

“Apple braids! One of those things will feed eight people. Oh, let me guess, you have a lot of them.”

I opened the freezer and two packages of the apple braid fell out, “I counted seven of them up here and I haven’t looked in the basement freezer.”

“Well, at least we’ll get a powdered sugar frosting, that’s normal anyway,” he sighed, looking them over as they sat on the counter. “What are those lumps in the frosting?”

“Frozen corn,” I answered. “The freezer’s pretty full too and I have six bags of the corn.”

Now, I don’t need your criticism, dear readers…I need you to take some basil leaves and sage off my hand…I’ve got a little extra!

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Creating a creative nature

I regret to say I have finally found something on Facebook that I have been forced to block. It isn’t that I’m touchy about political correctness or can’t take the cute animal pictures. No, I’m just feeling very inadequate with the crafty posts that are flooding the news line.

I have never followed Pinterest. I really think many of the things that come off of Pinterest are cute, but I lack the creative talent to so much as fold a pipecleaner. Pinterest reminds me of my early childhood traumas.

Every other kid in first grade looked forward to art time. Not me! Let me read, let me sing the alphabet, but don’t force me to make a paper bag puppet or a turkey by tracing my hand. I am breaking out into a sweat just thinking about the sweat I used to break out in whenever my first grade teacher would cheerfully chirp out, “Art time, everyone! Get your smocks on and head for the craft table!”

I loved the smock. It was brightly colored and had pockets all around the bottom. But the rest of art sucked. I couldn’t cut, paste, fold, “insert tab” or even color in the lines. If it would look good to make a rainbow out of blue, yellow, red and orange, I invariably had some wiggly arch lines in black, grey, puce and lemon-lime. It just never worked out and I learned to hate art time. Truth to tell, the teachers who had to work with me in art probably felt the same.
All these years later, I still suck at art. I have tried to do quilting, mosaics, scrapbooking, painting. You name, I’ve tried it. And I still break out in a sweat every time I open a jar of glitter or spread glue on a piece of paper. It always looks so much better in my head and I’ve never made anything that should have made the pictures on Facebook.

Now, I have to look at all of the posts on Facebook:

“I made this fantastic prom dress out of some old ribbon and tissue paper….my great-grandchild will still be able to wear it.”  

“I started with some old mason jars and some discarded artificial flower petals and look at these beautiful canisters I made.”

Or worst of all, a before picture of a dresser missing one leg and with the side busted out and an after picture of something that would look at home in Louie XIV’s palace of Versailles, with the notation, “I just used a little wood glue and some paint and look what I made.”

I can’t take it. All of my artistic inadequacies come out every time I see another creative masterpiece posted online and I’m that unenthusiastic child in the red smock, with all ten fingers stuck together with glitter glue. 

So, there’s only one choice! If you have a wonderful craft project you want to share…I will simply have to block it or spend all my time in the throes of my childhood trauma. I can waste no more time trying to make a silk purse out of that sow’s ear….

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Easter Eggs a Dying Art

I am a grown woman with what I consider to be a reasonably mature outlook on life. Nonetheless, I was having a pretty childish fit about dying Easter eggs. Nobody was going to be around, there was no reason to do it, but I still wanted to dye Easter eggs. Just a few, maybe a dozen. I didn’t even have to buy Easter egg dye, because I had found an old box, buried under a pile of old Easter decorations. I blew off all the dust and brought it upstairs.

First, though, I needed eggs. Eventually I decided to boil a dozen and a half..to allow for broken ones, and because I like to dye them. I put the eggs on to boil and went into the living room to watch my favorite show…that’s right, I was watching the Rifleman.

When I heard the first mysterious pop, I thought I missed something on the show and they had shot off a gun before the finale. The second pop made me sure that the cat was on the counters in the kitchen, so without taking my eyes off the television, I yelled, “Cat! Get out of the kitchen.”

The third and fourth pops occurred at about the same time that I registered that the cat was relaxing on the deck outside the front window and it was then that I realized that the end music of the Rifleman was playing and I had put the eggs on to boil during the opening music of the program.

I raced out to the kitchen in time for eggs five, six and seven to explode and through a haze of smoke, I snatched the eggs off the stove and ran the scorched mess full of cold water, causing a further smoke and steam mixture.

Choking, coughing, my eyes streaming, I poured the poor, scorched, cracked up messes in the garbage. You would think that would be the end of it, wouldn’t you? Not me. I got another container of eggs from the store…okay, so I got two full 18-count cartons just to be sure. Coming home, I put 18 eggs on the stove and the rest in the fridge. I turned off the television and turned on the timer.

In the end, I came out with 18-count of eggs perfectly boiled, not a one broken. I put them in their carton and put them in the fridge until it was time to dye them.

At last I was ready to dye the eggs. I took out the color tablets and the wax crayon for writing names and I began. Except I could not remember which carton of eggs were the boiled ones…okay, so I was sure I knew, and without question, I grabbed the right carton and started working on names with the wax crayon. Then, I got out the tablets to drop into the vinegar and water. The tablets were a little old, they were extremely crumbly, but when they went into the mixture, they didn’t dissolve at all well.

I put in the first egg which I had written on and if I hadn’t been struggling to write on the next egg, I might have noticed that it sort of floated weirdly. I was writing on the second egg, though and having trouble making the wax stay. I must have pushed pretty hard, because the egg smashed in my hand and the next thing I knew I was holding a handful of raw egg. Okay, so I had the wrong carton.

So I threw away the raw eggs and began working with the ones in the other carton…which were boiled, but which didn’t take the wax writing any better than the raw one. I dumped them in the dye and because the dye tablets didn’t dissolve well, the eggs came out splotchy and freckly… and the wax names did not show at all.

I didn’t give up. I dyed all those eggs and not one single name showed up. What was I going to do? I had a bunch of eggs with no names on them that looked like they had been attacked with a colorful version of the plague. But they were dyed. And in the end, I discovered that I’ve wasted a lot of years with those wax crayons when a nice black sharpie marker will do the job so much better! I hope everyone had a great Easter and that you didn’t all need three dozen (plus 2) eggs to get a decent batch dyed….and that your dye wasn’t old enough to vote! Have a good week!

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