Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Scenes from my Commute

On my daily commute to work, I pass a dairy farm.  As I sped by at 50 mph, something caught my eye that made me exclaim loudly, startle Nora, and make an illegal U-turn all in the course of about 30 seconds.

I saw this cow:

Giving birth to this calf:

Right along the side of the road!  All I had with me was my lackluster cell phone camera so I witnessed the event without photographing it (and you should all be very grateful).  But I came back an hour later with a camera to check on the baby.

Mama cow was not too happy to have me around so I snapped a few photos and was about to leave when this brown cow started mooing at me.

It wasn't a particularly angry moo so I got a little closer:

And then she got a little closer:

And then I decided that was close enough to a cow for one day and went on my merry way.

The End.

JT's still not eating... so no new series update today :(


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

What JT Eats: Day 4


He's been sick with the flu all weekend so we're taking a brief hiatus from this series until he's back on solid foods... so stay tuned for some new photos of Nora or whatever else I find to stick up here in the meantime!


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

What JT Eats: Day 3

Continuing in our series, today What JT Ate was leftovers prepared al la JT...

Turkey Chili (or so he says!)

Preheated in microwave for several, let's call them 'moments.'  Then after several 'moments' JT realizes he can't eat chili without cheese... so the search for cheddar begins...

...and ends with a bag of frozen cheese...

No matter!

Reheat for several more 'moments' and enjoy with a tall glass of milk.

JT is starting to follow this blog and swears that this will be the most uninteresting post yet... he may be right.  But he forgot to include his 'dessert'- several overly frosted sugar cookies!

So 'yum I'd eat that!' or 'heck no!'

Hopefully tomorrow will be slightly more compelling ;)

Valentine's Day 2011

Mr. Incredible and I continued our tradition of cooking a fancy dinner at home together on Valentine's Day this year.  (*Note- 'fancy' is a very relative term... it means anything other than something made by Costco or the typical grilled chicken whatever we usually eat)

Here's a few photo details of our night:

First, there were beautiful orchids (that I will invoke the help of God to keep alive) waiting for me when I got home:

Then on to dinner- baked asparagus with parmesan cheese:

Our main course: Spicy Orange Garlic Shrimp... but we had to take all of this off of the shrimp first (Note: totally worth spending the extra $5/lb to have someone do this for you!)

We used this recipe and it was delicious (next time I'll go a little lighter on the Cayenne pepper but Austin likes things HOT)!

And for dessert we went with creme brulee... a very time consuming dessert but so much better in heart-shaped ramekins!

And Mr. Incredible got to use the blow torch... in the kitchen!  


Monday, February 14, 2011

message from Nora

hey you...

come over here and say happy valentine's day...

Oh we don't want to hear how its a hallmark holiday and ploy to get us to spend money on roses and dinner reservations...

this isn't that kind of blog anyway... how about a little 'happy valentine's?

that's it? you can do better than that!

That's a little more like it...

Okay, okay- we get the idea...

Oh Nora- noooooo!!!

Ackkkk- NORA!  Wishing you a sloppy Nora kiss on Valentine's Day!


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Day 2: What JT Eats

Day two of What JT Eats and its not nearly as original as yesterday... but still strange.  Today I present to you:  Wendy's Chocolate Frostee with french fries dipped in

I think its a sweet salty thing...

"Yum, I'd eat that (or I already do)" or "Heck no!"

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

New Blog Series: What JT Eats

I'm trying something new- a blog series.  But first some background.

I work in an unconventional office... in other words- its out of my parent's house.  My big little brother comes home for lunch every day.  This usually causes some form of work disruption.  But that's another story.

I've lately noticed the unusual things my big little brother eats for lunch.  Thus a new series is born: What JT Eats.  I'll try to document regularly.  Feel free to comment 'yum I'd eat that' or 'heck no!'

Today's entry: Bacon Quesadilla with Ranch Dressing

Directions: Throw one flour tortilla in frying pan (heat probably too high).  Grate cheddar cheese directly on to tortilla.  Add pre-cooked pieces of bacon.  Cover with another flour tortilla.  Attempt to flip quesadilla using only your hands (so you don't have to wash a spatula).  When cheese is melted, rip tortillas apart and squirt ranch dressing inside.  Eat with a glass of milk.

So- 'yum I'd eat that!' or 'Heck no!'

A spitty day

Seventeen eager little faces peered up at me from the floor.  They struggled to stay seated and to keep their hands from grabbing at each other, their toys, or the shiny distraction I held in front of them.  The first and second graders at the orphanage had been promised a reward if they could sit through the entire lesson without interrupting.  The desire for a reward waged war against their lack of discipline and longing to wiggle- evident enough to me that I almost laughed out loud several times as I taught from the front.  But to laugh would be the end of any semblance of order and the impending chaos that was promised (aka their reward) would be coming soon enough.

"Let's count how many pieces make up a trumpet!" I flashed the black case in front of their little faces and began to assemble the instrument.  The children counted out loud and then looked at me with anticipation.

"Do you think this instrument will be high or low?" I asked again and then kids called out their guesses.  I played a scale, demonstrating the trumpet's range and now the kids screamed out in glee, "High! High!"

After a few more demonstrations and questions we told the children it was time for their reward.  Because of their good behavior, they would be allowed to try to play the trumpet.  They gasped in awe at the possibility of being able to not only touch the shiny trumpet but to play it too.

Chaos erupted.  Before I could take a step back, little hands were reaching for the trumpet, pushing to be next in line, pleading to try first.  We quickly attempted some order, creating a line for them to wait in, and I made sure to not take my hands off the trumpet.

One by one, little faces moved from my mouth giving them directions to the trumpet in my hands as they waited to try. Little hands pressed down on the valves as rapidly as possible, and little lungs gasped huge breathes of air, trying to make the loudest sound on the trumpet.  The kids took turns buzzing on the mouthpiece and then playing through the trumpet.  Most could manage a blast of sound- but that was enough- they were quickly bouncing up and down at their success at adding to the cacophony of noise in the room.  A few struggled to make any sound come out of the trumpet, and I helped them as best as I could to remember to 'buzz' and not 'hum.'  And then there were a few who could really play the trumpet.  They instinctually pressed their lips together, took a deep breath, and played a decent sounding note.  These kids would look down at the trumpet in wonder and then look up at me in awe.

After much high fiving and leaping around the room in triumph at the experience of playing an actual trumpet, our class came to an end.  The kids filed out, I packed up the instruments, and was left with a slight headache, a very wet, spit-covered sweater, and a feeling of joy at bringing music- or cacophonous noise if you prefer- to these forgotten children.


Sunday, February 6, 2011

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Random Post

1.  I heard Owl City on a Christian radio station... you know, the Fireflies guys?  They recorded 'In Christ Alone.'  Huh.

2.  Every time I think of Owl City, I think of the amazing music teacher at PS22... haven't heard of them?!  Definitely worth wiki-ing to find out more but here's a clip:

3.  I've been thinking a lot about music education- and ways that I can further mine... my music education education that is.  That's really confusing but I'd like to find classes or a program or something that I can learn to be a better music educator.  But not like a masters program... that's too intense right now.  But maybe something more like this.

4.  SDSU is doing something exciting with their basketball team.  I don't personally care, but Mr. Incredible is experiencing some long-lost alumni nostalgia and is making me watch all the games.  I don't mind but I hate how squeaky the players' shoes are on the court.  I almost can't pay attention to anything else.

5.  Its strawberry time in San Diego!  Just so you all know.

6.  We're watching the new season of American Idol with J-Lo and the Aerosmith guy.  I think its awkward... and probably the easiest season to get on the show.  The producers are going to have to cut so many people in Hollywood week!  We haven't gotten through a show yet without Mr. Incredible exclaiming, "I HATE this show!"  and then going back to watching it.  I'm pretty sure Mr. Aerosmith wears women's clothing most of the time... but maybe that's 'in' right now (?).

7.  Ahh, I think that's enough randomness for now... oh wait, except for this: