To the Beach

May 22, 2015

Happy Summer, Readers! Well, at least summer has technically begun in our neck of the woods. The Minxes finished school this week, although I have to say that with all of the chilly, rainy weather we’ve been having, it feels very un-summery indeed. More like Portland, Oregon. Sheesh.

Luckily, we’re escaping the rain for the Aloha! shores of Maui. We will be gone until the first week of June, and we’re eager to dunk our toes in the Pacific and get sun-kissed and sandy-soled. I’m super excited to stuff myself with all of the poke I can get my hands on; the Minxes will have none of it but they’ll make up for it in shave ice, I reckon. More poke for me!

cheap sunglasses

I won’t be too active on the Interwebs while I’m gone, although I will be sharing stories of our most disasterous Hawaiian vacation ever. If you haven’t seen these oldies but goodies, keep an eye out for them. They will make you laugh (and cringe and maybe even sick to your stomach). They will have you wondering why the Hell I would ever, ever consider returning to Hawaii with my children again.

My answer to that is simple: I’m a moron.

Something (or many somethings) always goes awry for we vacationing T.’s–we seem to be a bit cursed whenever we go on Holiday, and I expect that this time will be no different. At least the girls are older now, so I won’t have to worry about the little one licking her way through busy airports…

Be happy, be well and stay tuned. You know there’s a good story comin’

surfboard 2

Much love,

TKW

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Last week, smack in the middle of my post-LTYM-Boulder hangover, an email popped up in my inbox from the other school. Miss D.’s middle school. The middle school isn’t nearly as needy with their demands as the elementary school; I mean, they’ve never asked me to make 5 gallons of soup and salad for twenty, so I figured it was safe to click on it.

Oops.

It was a call for food. For teenagers. During the final week of school. ARG! Can’t a girl catch a break?

I mean, I was still in full-blown hangover mode. I was sporting a three-day old t-shirt that was stained and rumpled and decidedly funk, I was bloated and lethargic from carb overload and the only activity (besides consuming carbs) that I could find enthusiasm for was watching many, many episodes of Silicon Valley.

Unfair, universe! When that email popped onto my screen, I still had two more days of gluttony and sloth planned for myself! That’s definitely the rule, right? 2 nerve-wracking, public performances earns a girl at least 5 days of roaming around listlessly in yoga pants and dirty socks, no?

Hmph. To be fair, the middle school asks very little of me, and the food in question was to celebrate the completion of a long-lasting and difficult project in Advanced English. Miss D. worked her butt off on that project, and I’m sure the other kids had done the same. They deserved a party and some tasty snacks, so SlothMom needed to pull her shit together and rustle up some food.

After the Great Soup Debacle a few weeks ago, I was damn sure that I didn’t want to worry about transporting piping hot food anywhere. There are suicidal squirrels out there, roaming free, just waiting to dart in front of an unsuspecting mom car. I wasn’t taking any chances.

I settled on this recipe, because you can make these little nibbles in advance and freeze them, and then just lightly heat them before transport. They’re good warm or even at room temperature, and I like recipes that are forgiving like that. Note to self: soup is not forgiving. Next time you need to bring something tasty to a school function, give soup the big-ass boot and make pepperoni pizza bites instead. Pizza bites are golden.

What’s not to like about little cute bites of cheesy, pepperoni-laden deliciousness? Pimply, gawky, hormone-churning humans love anything resembling pizza, so this was a no-brainer.*

It also didn’t hurt that this recipe is super simple and features ingredients I already had on-hand, because hungover bitches are NOT changing out of crusty t-shirts to drive to the store. I figured I could knock out a double batch of these beauties in an hour and still have plenty of time left to nosh on leftover scalloped potatoes (don’t judge!) and catch up on Silicon Valley shenanigans.

Which is exactly what I did. And those teenagers swarmed on these like starving locusts. This time, I win.

P1050798

Pepperoni Pizza Bites

makes 24 (can double the recipe)

slightly adapted from Rachael Ray

 

3/4 cup flour

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 cup whole milk

1 lightly beaten egg

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1 cup diced pepperoni

1/4 teaspoon pizza/Italian seasoning

marinara sauce, for serving

 

Preheat oven to 375. Grease a 24-cup mini-muffin tin.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder. Whisk in the milk and egg. Stir in the mozzarella, pepperoni and pizza seasoning. Let the batter stand for ten minutes.

Spoon batter into mini-muffin cups and bake for 20-25 minutes or until puffed and golden. Cool 5 minutes and remove from pan.

Serve with marinara sauce for dipping.

If you choose to make these ahead and freeze them, you can reheat the frozen bites on a baking sheet in a 350 degree oven for about 8-10 minutes.

*Apparently, small, white, fluffy dogs love these pizza bites, too. Mozz-man was yipping and dancing around the kitchen after these things came out of the oven, desperate for a sample. And yeah, I caved.

 

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Last week was crazy and inspiring and exhausting and wonderful and terrible. All of those things. The universe managed to serve me up the perfect storm: stomach virus, Teacher Appreciation Luncheon from Hades, late nights/meetings for my husband at work, end-of-year project madness for the Minxes, Listen to Your Mother-Boulder shows, Mother’s Day.

You’ve already had to suffer through the details of the virus and the luncheon debacle, and I won’t bore you further with those things. Nor will I regale you about end-of-year school projects, because I’m betting that a lot of you are deep in the weeds with your own madness.

By the time Saturday rolled around, I honestly wasn’t sure how I was going to make it through the day. When I woke up that morning, I lingered in bed for a few minutes, cuddling with the Mozz-man and sizing up the hours to come. I ticked off items in my head: feed family breakfast, do laundry, figure out LTYM outfit, shower, walk dog, feed family lunch, pack up for show (makeup, curling iron, hairspray, outfit, shoes, script, overnight bag), hitch a ride to Boulder and be at venue by 1:30 pm. And then, of course, several hours of jitters and rehearsing and sound/light check and BAM! Showtime at 4pm and BAM! Showtime at 7pm and then, at roughly 9:15pm, there would be a big exhale and some drinks with cast mates and friends. And perhaps snow, alas. Luckily, my sweet husband had booked a hotel in Boulder for the night so we wouldn’t have to sweat the drive home. Bless him.

I’m embarrassed to say that the most stressful part of my day was figuring out what to wear onstage. I’d originally planned to purchase something new and fabulous for the show–a treat to myself–but my “shopping days” turned into “vomity virus days.” I never made it to the mall. Thus, I spent a panicky NINETY freaking minutes pawing through my closet and wiggling in and out of various garments and throwing things across the room and cursing my icky, middle-aged upper arms on Saturday morning.

After that nonsense, the rest of the day seemed like CrackerJack. Really, it was kind of a colossal, wonderful blur of laughter and tears and stories and bright lights and applause and hugs. My only truly nervous moment was when I walked onstage for the 4 o’clock show, looked out at the audience expecting to see nothing (those bright lights are a blessing, yo) and holy highwater, right there in the front row, clear as day, was Mama sitting next to Daddy, grinning like a loon. Gaaaaa.

Thanks for the gi-normous heart attack there, you two.

After I swallowed my tonsils and got my breath back, though, it turned out to be a blessing, because then I could blow Mama a kiss after I did my little song and dance out there. It felt good to be able to do that and I was so, so grateful that she was able to be there. Last year, it snowed heavily and the roads were too treacherous for my parents to make the hour-long drive to Boulder. This year, they braved pouring rain, but the snow held off until late in the evening. What the heck is it with snow and Mother’s Day in Colorado?

I was lucky to have family and cherished friends there to support me and boy, was I proud of our Listen to Your Mother-Boulder cast. We kicked ass. I’m not even bragging. We killed it. Both shows, back-to-back. Boo-ya!

It was one of my favorite days of my life.

And then I sorta collapsed.

I couldn’t settle down to sleep, even after two strong cocktails at the wrap-party, and I tossed around in my hotel bed. I was bleary-eyed the next morning at brunch and wasn’t very good company (zombies are shitty conversationalists). When I got home, I opened cards and hugged Minxes and then we collapsed with a takeout dinner and Guardians of the Galaxy, which I barely remember watching. Luckily, I get a do-over this Sunday when we have a belated Mother’s Day lunch with Mama and Daddy.

I’m kind of embarrassed to say that I’ve been a waste of skin most of the week. I’ve gotten the basics done, but even those have been half-assed. Quite a few sandwiches and paninis for dinner. And takeout burgers and fries. And pizza.

You know what’s great, though? For once, I don’t feel guilty about shoveling all of that fattening, carbohydrate-laden stuff into my pie-hole. I earned it, dammit. I worked my tail off and did brave things and BRAVERY DESERVES CARBS! Lots and lots of carbs!

That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it. Besides, I lost a pound or two via the vomiting virus, so I had a little wiggle room.

Wiggle room that I no longer have, because 5 days of carbo-loading definitely put that real estate back on my behind. Alas, my guilt is back, full force. So much so that I made hubs go out and buy this.

smoothie

Healthy smoothie recipes will be hitting your inbox soon. Just in time for swimsuit season.

 

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