Let me tell you about my baking fiasco over the weekend. I can bake, you know. And not too badly, I’ll even say. But….
It all began with a desire for lemon squares. I’ve never baked lemon squares. So, I figured great. I will use this box kind I found during my mad Easter Bunny dash to Wal-Mart on Friday. I can cheat on lemon squares, right? I make pancake batter from scratch. My chocolate chip cookies really are better than my mom’s! (ssssh, but, it is true). So, cheating on lemon squares should be fine. WRONG. I’ve never been more food wrong. Well, that isn’t entirely true, but isn’t been a long time since I have been so wrong.
We followed the directions (I followed; no one else will claim this debacle). We followed those directions to a T! They looked fine, smell fine. We dusted them with powdered sugar. We should have realized the bad omen when the top of the powdered sugar thing-y fell off and dumped the contents onto the squares. But, no, we continued blindly on our way to lunch!
Until, we wanted to try some. I asked Anna to cut a slice for me. She tried and tried and tried… and asked for a chisel. Seriously, these babies were stuck in the pan, which I HAD sprayed. We couldn’t get the first square. We soaked the pan overnight and still it was stuck. It is my only 8 x 8 pan. It was my GRANDMOTHER’s pan. Anna pulled out a screwdriver and a hammer to chisel it off – UM, NO, missy!
So, what in the world…. I made tea. I thought perhaps, I’d have to call my mom to help me figure out how to get these nasty things out of my pan. But, this boiling water seemed a good idea. I poured it on top of the square. One spot in the pan began to bubble. It looked like it was breathing. Ew! The glop began to peel away in a nasty sticky looking sheet. So, of course, we mess with the glop for a bit, but the trauma of the lemon squares has propelled us to determine to find the perfect recipe. We have a few to try already. Wish us luck.
It is never ok for a child to be picked up by a stranger. A complete stranger and even someone they kind of know! There are rules. There are safety procedures. Secret passwords or handshakes help and protect a child. Set one up. Let them pick one out. The kids need to know that they can ask, “What’s the secret word?” If the person doesn’t know it then the children do NOT go. PERIOD, no question. They need to walk or RUN away from the person and seek help from a safe adult. Strangers can simply be people the child doesn’t know well. Kids don't remember everyone.
You may know the person picking the kids up, but do they? If they have met the person once or twice that may not even be enough. Set up a safe security word or secret handshake or whatever communicative method you are comfortable.
Set it for your peace of mind. Set it for their safety.
For my kids, we will set up a new word tonight. This will help ease their minds every time something different happens.
There is no reason to scare the kids, but have them realize that even people they know may not have their best interests at heart.
My kids and I haven’t practiced this enough. They are not little anymore, but that is no reason NOT to protect them.
It is not ok to pick up an unknown child without a password. Ask for it if you are asked to pick up a child.
http://www.missingkids.com/en_US/documents/nismart2_overview.pdf p 7 (stats are older but.... scary!)
Mmmm. Pi Day! The nerd holiday! Math Geeks Celebration! Gather around and celebrate the amazing little, er long number, pi. A mathematical constant ratio of any Euclidean circle's circumference to its diameter..
Written for someone who needs to know it is ok to not be perfect.
Written in the first person so that person can see.....
I try and not care but occasionally it bugs me when people don't like me or are mean. I listen to my doubts. No particular individuals here, just a general comment.
I know I am not the best person. I am not perfect. Humanity was designed to have issues and foibles. I don't necessarily relish in mine, but I know I have them. I know I have faults, but I don't need them pointed out constantly. I remind myself daily. That mirror, I see myself harsher than you or anyone can imagine. No, I can't change all the issues you might see, and on some level the fact people point them out makes me too stubborn to do so. But, I work diligently, I slip, I fall back and then I push forward. I may snark and sarcasm to protect my heart. I laugh and I cry. I appreciate you find yourself above reproach but to constantly belittle and bemoan all the problems I have caused or so-and-such has caused but this does not help me aspire to be better, at least not for you.
You know what pushes me to improve:
support, not the backhanded kind; love, not the only-if-you-do-this-or-that kind laughter, with me and not at me or my challenges touch, a hug goes a long way and not a threatening posture and holding my hand always wins silence can be the best support; knowing someone is JUST there; words aren't required smiles from a stranger hellos from an unknown cheering with the crowd at a game that pleasure notes written on my bathroom mirror
Funny thing support, it needn't be constant to provide the best groundwork. The best support I get can be the smile across a room or that surprise letter in the mail. It isn't always even human. Clouds, stars, moons, flowers, beautiful sunsets, the crash of waves and rainbows remind me of greater strengths being offered. these things are reminding me that my issues are small.
Don't allow yourself the doldrums of ingratitude, but relish in the joys of each dandelion seed being blown by a toddler and remember we should all blow those seeds. The smell of sunshine on the kitty in the window can turn a day around in a snap. Know that you are loved and even more so when you doubt you are.
Friends are always next you you but you may not see. Reach to the heart when you are in need. Know from where the strength of support comes. It might surprise you where support is found. It will disappoint when it isn't where you wanted. But, the flowers will bloom and the music will play. Someone is there, look and see, reach and find, ask and you can receive.
Above all, believe you are deserved because you always were and you will always be important.
Neighborhood: I had an old neighborhood by my little towns standards. It's not quite done and I hope we keep our wooded area in the back. A few old trees still grace us and it is lovely when we get our rare snows.
Skies at dusk are the best in Louisiana anytime of year.
Bedside: I am only reading 5 books at the same time. Not my highest tandem reading experience but it is more difficult as time is more constrained with other duties. I think I've had the Burger King Crown for at least 10 years. You can't quite see the kiddo's Mockingjay pin next to the clock.
I love numbers. Not always math but there are times when numbers are important.
Today, my favorite number is 844.
844 days means this to me:
Exactly 2 years, 3 months, and 22 days.
It means 20,256 hours.
This is equivalent to 1,215,360 minutes.
You can also convert 844 days to 72,921,600 seconds.
This is a personal number today. My usual favorite is 14. I like 4's, obviously. Silly how little things like numbers are your day, your bank account, contact information, your identifiers with almost everyone and for everything. Today my number is 844 and I feel a sense of relief.
My favorite fruits are summer and fall fruits - watermelon, blueberries and blackberries. Winter fruits are fun, but tend to get boring after a time. Strawberry season is coming in and I so LOVE strawberries.
Love clementines or Cuties. They are perfect alone and for quick snacks and even with a nice beer.
Who can say no to a fruit that can be a candle, juice or kid snack. They last a long time and are so easy to peal. Be careful if your kids eat them... they will not eat just one. I have to watch, since Anna will eat 5 at a time.
The fruits I picked today were apples. I know more winter in most places. I miss the visits to the North Georgia hills and the apple orchards, but they all look so lovely in their rank and file way. I love the crisp apples, not the mealy ones. So, gala and fuji and a new favorite- Honey Crisp. The Honey Crisp is HUGE, but crisp and sweet and perfect for sharing.