Thursday, November 12, 2009

Kitchen Insecurities

Well, Ive come to the conclusion that I should not be a housewife. (not that I ever REALLY thought I could be)

It's been a hard month food wise at my house. My dear friend Bonnie (see post below) is Martha-Freaking-Stewart, and I began to feel bad about my lack of domesticity. Soooooo I decided it was high time for me to put my oven mitts to use and start creating some wonderful meals. Unfortunately, my kitchen knowledge is scarce, AT BEST, so there are always lots of "Googles". For example "how to hard boil eggs", "how to tell when pasta is ready", etc.

Problem number one= My oven doesn't work.
While I HAVE mastered the art of Crescent Rolls on the grill, there are just some things you can't "cook out".

Problem number two = My Work Schedule
I work from 8am-5pm and 6pm-10pm daily, except for the weekends, which I only work 6pm-10pm. This doesn't leave much time for gourmet cooking....

Problems #1 & 2 lead me to one conclusion. A Crock Pot.

So off to the store I went for said Crock Pot, and some groceries to put in it. I decided to break in the Crock Pot with some good old fashioned Chicken Noodle soup. I mean HOW HARD CAN IT BE?! So I got what Google told me I needed, but had NO idea how to go about cooking and chopping a whole chicken, so I cheated and went with good ole Pilgrims Pride chicken breasts.

My thinking, "I can cook the cut up chicken breasts in some broth overnight, then add the veggies in the morning, and Ill have some kick ass chicken noodle soup by lunchtime!" What really happened, skip to about 3:13 am, "Oh holy hell, I cannot stand the smell of that chicken cooking for one more SECOND!!!" Even the dogs were nauseated. So up I got to put the chicken and the Crock Pot on the back porch for the remainder of the night, and smear some Vicks under my nose so I didn't vomit.

Needless to say, chicken noodle soup was the LAST THING IN THE WORLD I wanted the next day, so Mr. Chicken got a nice burial at sea down my toilet.

Lesson number one= Do your cookin during the day, preferably with open windows.

So two weeks go by, I have stopped cursing at the Crock Pot, and decide to give porkchops a try. The night before I set out the chops to thaw, and then the next morning put all my ingredients in the Crock Pot and got her going. There they were, ready and waiting for their Pork Chops to jump in, when I realized I had set out two giant steaks to thaw the night before....

Friday, September 18, 2009

Two Years and One Friend Later...

Well, it only took me two and a half years here in El Paso to make a friend, that either says a lot about my work schedule, or my personality...

I started doing yoga for the first time at a studio fairly close to my house in April-ish, and quickly discovered it kept me from being as neurotic as usual, and kept going! It was the most "normal", and I use that word VERY loosely, social setting I had been in since moving from Weatherberry, and I had forgotten how much I needed that kind of outlet.

One day, after I'd been going a month or so, we did a "partner stretch", and since the "partners" needed to be roughly the same height (yeah, good luck with that in El Paso), I got paired with a girl on the complete other side of the room, named Bonnie. Now, I had seen Bonnie several times, and we had said "hi & bye" in class, but never had the chance to talk.

Turns out, Bonnie was a bit socially starved too! A high power accountant, and recent transport from MANHATTAN...yes, New York City, to El Paso, about a culture shock! She also went from Mrs. Career woman, to Mrs. Stay At Home Mommy of 8 month old Jacob. Whoa! I just thought I wanted to slit my wrists with a butter knife....

So once we were introduced, in the form of trying to "gumbify" each other in partner stretch, our first conversation went sorta like this.

Bonnie: "Hi, my name's Bonnie"
Kristen: "Hi, my name's Kristen"
Both Together: "Wanna be my friend?" (not really, but basically)

So here we are, five months later, and causing lots of trouble. Our most recent adventure was "de-algaeing" Bonnie's pool (which I COMPLETELY got suckered into). See, Mrs. Bonnie has contacts, therefore, she wasnt about to don on the goggles and go down with the wire brush. I was good with that part, minus the fact that I kept floating up in the middle of my scrubbing. Bonnie, so lovingly placed her hoof in the middle of my back on the pool floor to "help" me stay down there (true confessions, but only because she will most likely read this, I DID ask her to push with her HAND to help me, but evidently, the foot worked better). Part two of the algae cleaning involved rubbing a chlorine tablet along the bottom of the pool floor to kill any remaining algae I didnt get with the brush. "The pool guy told me to be sure and NOT handle the chlorine, he said socks work good". So at some point, while holding my breath at the bottom of my friend's pool, wearing her gym socks on my hands, and rubbing poisonous chemicals on the plaster three inches from my face, I realized that we MUST be true friends. (of course, at this point, when it all became incredibly funny to me, I came up spouting and laughing uncontrollably, to point this out to my sweet friend Bonnie).

Good friends are hard to find, and I'm glad I found this one.
(even if she did try to drown me)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Stolen Moments

We have flower pots outside the front door of both clinics. (Granted the Anthony one is CHAINED to the wall, but that's beside the point) They make everything look nicer, especially this time of year when the flowers are so bright and colorful. We change them out periodically, as they need it, to keep them looking fresh, but sometimes get a little "help" from our patients who like them just a little too much. 

One day Amy was removing the deceased, or nearly dead flowers in order to make room for new ones, and a woman waiting in her car for someone in the pharmacy called out (in Spanish) "Hey! Why are you throwing out those flowers?" Amy says (Again in Spanish), "Oh Seniora, they're dead and we're getting new ones." The woman replied, "No, I take flowers from here all the time, and they do very well.."

Thursday, March 26, 2009


It's SPRING, finally! Edna (my Powerbook) has been sick for almost a month, thus my absence from Bloggerland, but is back home to her mother now and the world can begin spinning once more. 

Violet is 13 months old, and she has a hard life ahead of her. She has 4 older brothers and sisters, her mom is 27, and she doesn't have a dad. Her mother's boyfriend has a long history of Seizure Disorder, and has the mental capacity of an 8 yr. old. He isn't allowed to be home alone with any of the children, not their rule, CPS's rule. Her older sister was tazed, along with their mother, by her first husband. He tazed them so that they would be still enough for him to run them over with his car. The four older children witnessed their grandmother bleed to death, and two years later, their grandfather's fatal heart attack in the bathtub. The second oldest girl has tried to kill her teacher (really), and attempts to strangle the youngest boy when he won't quit crying. After the death of their grandparents, the mother moved them all to California to live with her only remaining family. Their uncle beat them and they left everything they owned to take an 18 hour bus ride back home. Once they got back, they lived for two months on a friend's screened in porch until they could find a place to stay. The mom has since secured them a house through her church, and is attempting to put her life back together. 

She isn't a bad mom, but she is so in over her head. 

We first met Violet at two days old. In a world SO full of chaos, God made a miracle. She is the most perfect child. When she was four months old, I asked her mother if she would consider letting me adopt her. Her reply? "Are you kidding, she's the only beautiful thing I have." 

Friday, January 2, 2009

X-Mas Highlight Reel

What you need to know about my Holiday Season

~I traveled the world (ok not really, but most of Texas and Oklahoma)

~My bags traveled even more than I did (which is not a good thing). My clothes ended up in Birmingham, Alabama. I ended up in Amarillo, TX. Not Good.

~I have the best family. We all made Gingerbread Houses (ok, so we cheated and used Pop Tarts)

~I reconnected with a dear friend

~Saw "Doubt" with K.C. and David (Not a movie for the masses, but we REALLY liked it. Unreal acting)

~I attended the MOST FABULOUS K.C. Clifford Show at the UCO Jazz Lab. Ahhhh heaven

~I had sweet sweet time with all my best-est friends.

~ I painted in Steve's new studio (jealous)

~I ate my weight in Sushi

~I did a wee bit of shopping (blushes)

~I had one (or two) too many Vodka Tonics (with a bloody mary in there somewhere) and olives and came home with Snausages instead of toes. 

~Came home to a nice dinner, and my OWN BED!!! YAY!

~Amy and I saw "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button". Incredible. If you havent seen it. GO!

It was so great to have time with my family and favorite friends, and so nice to have such a great home to come home to. I have so much to be thankful for. 

Happy New Year!