Friday, September 7, 2012

The Ugly Years and a Bowl of Soup

Wednesday I perused for some new recipes.  We are having trouble getting to eat at home, as some child decided to play school ball, and they have close to 50 games in a 7 week period.  Our dining budget is blown, I've learned that if you skip the "A" game, knowing your child is not playing before the "B" game, you can get in free, and poor Bookworm has probably eaten more Taco Mayo and Sonic in the last five weeks than her whole life combined.

The coaches have them walk the half mile to these two establishments after checking in at the locker rooms.  And just when did my child get old enough to walk with her friends to these places and buy herself some food?

Probably about the time she started looking like this:

She's on the right.  And she has makeup on.  And I think she's really pretty, in a completely unbiased sort of way.  Dang it.

Not "dang it" because she's pretty.  But "dang it" she's in 7th grade, and that is just down right annoying and somehow impossible, but obviously totally possible, considering this is her back to school picture for this year.  And yes, that's 7th grade.  

Raise your hand if 7th grade was your "ugliest year ever."


Anyway, I found several recipes to try, but this one is a real keeper.  I put all of the ingredients in the crock pot this morning at about 6:30 and Brent simply added the cream cheese about 5:30 and then served it up to the kids about 6pm.  You see, Bookworm had a friend come home from school with her to get ready for the dance.  They were here by 3:30 and were still not ready when I got home at 6:20.  Popcorn was in charge of hair.  However, the waver took so much time with Bookworm, that Grace's friend decided to forgo any wild new styles and went with her simple normal 'do.

Anyway, OF COURSE I was cleaning up the kitchen before I realized I should photograph this recipe and blog it.

Because I've been so short of blog material lately...Well, more lacking any real desire to sit down and look at the computer, much less write a blog.

I thought about putting it in a pretty bowl and sprinkling some shredded cheese on it, and perhaps a dollop of sour cream. Then I got bored and impatient just thinking about it, so I shrugged and decided to just snap a picture of it in the Tupperware bowl , and call it good.  And while my photography skills leave something to be desired, this dish will in no way disappoint.  In fact, Bookworm's friend cleaned her bowl (other than a few tomato chunks) and her parents keep claiming she's a finicky eater...

Spicy Latin Chicken Soup

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I actually used 3, because mine were so huge)
3 cans diced tomatoes (I actually used 1 can diced, 1 can Mexican style, and 1 can of tomatoes with chipotle peppers)
16oz jar salsa verde
1 can pinto beans rinsed and drained
1 can black beans rinsed and drained
frozen corn (it called for one can, but I used probably 2 cups frozen)
2 tsp chili powder
1 packet taco seasoning
1 tsp cumin
cilantro, if desired (and believe me, I don't) 
1/2 c of cream cheese

Place chicken (whole, they will fall apart when you go to scoop it out) in bottom of crock pot.  Add remaining ingredients, except cream cheese and stir.  Cook on low 8-10 hours, or until chicken is very tender.  About 15 minutes before dinner time, soften cream cheese, scoop out a bit of liquid from your soup and then stir in to cream cheese to create a creamy mixture, then pour this into your soup.

Top with shredded cheese, sour cream and tortilla chips as desired.

This soup was a huge hit, and my family was quite pleased to have a real home cooked meal, and not something that was thrown together in 5 minutes or less.  Give it a try and let me know what you think!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Two Noncrafters

I'm not crafty.  And when I say that, I don't mean in the devious sort of way.

Because I can be quite devious.  Which is why I think I'll do okay with a certain child when they are a teen.  Because I've been there, batted the eyes, and got the t-shirt.

Anyhoo, today after Bookworm left for her back to school dance on a SCHOOL NIGHT, three weeks into school no less, Popcorn suddenly realized she needed a lanyard.

And it was "required."  And apparently some girl had a super cute one made out of duct tape, and couldn't we just whip one up?

"I have not the faintest idea how to make a lanyard."  I then considered the subject closed and began to clean the kitchen, secure in the knowledge that she would surely bury herself in "Wipeout" and forget all about the silly I-don't-really-believe-it's-required-lanyard.

As I poured the leftovers in a freezer bag for a hectic day when we would need a yummy dinner, I saw her digging through the crap cabinet (some people have craft drawers, cabinets, or even rooms.  We have a crap cabinet) and dragging out streamers, leather scraps, and beads that were a gift from like her 6th birthday (told you we weren't crafty around here.)

She had visions of wrapping the streamers in leather scraps and somehow incorporating the beads.  I tried not to look as skeptical as I felt about this endeavor..."MOooooOOOoooM!  You said you had a fabulous idea!" 

"No.  I said I hadn't the faintest idea.  Big difference."

"Oh."  And then she went all disappointed looking on me and continued to dig through the cabinet that I had actually organized a few short weeks before...


"Let me see what I can find."  And I lifted my shoe box of sewing notions from the top of my closet and she dug through it as if it were buried treasure...

As we sifted through the bounty on my bed, I felt as if something were looking down at me.  It was a rather strange and random sensation...

And then a brown recluse fell out of my hair and skittered onto my leg.  I freaked out and knocked it to the floor.  I snatched up a kleenex and smashed him to bits before he could scurry under the bed.

The spider is rather irrelevant to this tale, but I felt the need to share my trauma with you.  I have felt as if I've been covered in creepy crawlies ever since. 


Anyway.  Popcorn and I managed a lanyard.  And now her flash drive is in no danger of being confused with another student's.

We decided that perhaps we had a random crafty hair after all.