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Monday, December 27, 2010

Nacho Challenge Pt. 1*

As promised via Facebook here are some more pictures of food.

Let me tell you I am beyond thankful that this time I was able to see one of my oldest and dearest friend from childhood.

What started out as a excuse for me to get some fresh air and her to get a cup of coffee turned into my feeling pretty compelled to eat once more (and soon!)

We headed out to what before it becomes a local watering hole to us locals, is where high-school kids can get relatively cheap noms. My favourite was always the nachos grande so that's what I ordered.

They were alright but of course some things can't live up to what you remember and in other cases you've just learned more about food to eat some things from some people and feel the same way about them.

Of course, this was one pregnant lady who wasn't complaining too much.

Obviously I was able to "choke them down."

Despite how long friends have known you and how big they feel your mouth is or has always been - it seems they can always be surprised at what you can shovel into your face.

H. and I definitely turned into the 12 year-old versions of ourselves. Which can lead people to a bad case of "monkey see, monkey do."

Whatever the boys excuse is - you'd have to get from him.

Being a picky eater, what has been dubbed "the nacho challenge" was not for him. But tortilla chips are. Of course they need to be properly stacked and counted (there were 13) first.

*I chose to call this "nacho challenge pt. 1" because I can't see how this won't happen again somehow.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A Post For Sock Knitters

Usually I try to post you something slightly more Pro-Portional Designs related, but this morning I read a particularly enjoyable tip list from Knitting Daily in my e-mail and have chosen to share it.

10 Tips for Longer-Lasting Socks

1. Don't wind your yarn into a cake until you're ready to knit. Winding a skein into a cake pulls fibers taught and over months the yarn could lose its ability to spring back into shape.

2. Choose the right yarn for the project; 100% cotton yarn isn't necessarily appropriate for socks because they will quickly bag and lose their shape when worn. Wool and wool/nylon blends are popular for socks because of their innate elasticity.

3. Choose high-quality sock yarn—inexpensive sock yarn tends have short fibers, which pill and wear out more quickly than longer fibers. If your budget is tight, you can find great deals in sale sections.

4. Go down one needle size (or more) when knitting the feet. If a label calls for a US 2 needle, knit the foot of the sock on a US 1, or even a US 0 so you get a dense fabric that holds up to wear.

5. Knit the right size socks. Too-big socks slip around more on the foot and cause more wear as they move around in your shoes.

6. Rinse socks separately before washing with other items. While dye shouldn't run, super-saturated colors might and you don't want your other socks to be affected.

7. Turn socks inside-out when washing. That way the inside of the sock gets a fuzzy halo over time, and not the outside.

8. Consider washing your finished socks in a small mesh bag in the machine so they don't catch on zippers.

9. Don't wash socks in hot water. Even socks labeled "superwash" could felt or shrink a bit.

10. Lay socks flat to dry. Over time, machine drying will lessen stitch definition and make socks look worn. The intense heat of drying might also break down fibers.

For the entire/original article you can go here.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Winter Message from Om Nom Nom Studios

For those of you who have this winter season starting to or already hitting you we hope you're staying warm!

Friday, December 3, 2010

It's The Most Wonderful Time of The Fortnight

It's that time again! Grocery day. A day that these days, for me, is packed with exercise.

This morning when I spoke to my mother on the phone she made a comment about Ohio State fans. Nothing derogatory of course, but she remarked on how much tOSU stuff the tOSU fans wear even back home.

While out looking for manager deals in the meat section I noticed this.

Even the chicken here is pro-buckeyes. I have to admit, this is the first time I have noticed chicken with such a message.

I decided at that point to take pictures of other instances of this in the store but the plan was not to go too out of my way to hunt it down. Items I photographed for her needed to pretty much be a tOSU item I just happened to pass.

I came up with a shockingly small amount of items. For those of you who don't live here or who have not gone grocery shopping in tOSU heartland I'll need you to imagine everything from Buckeye M&M's to Buckeye Tabasco sauce readily available.

These are what I came up with without going far out of my way to hunt down more items to photograph.

In the end it was a relatively successful day of grocery shopping for both myself and the dog who made it very clear she wanted to go errand running with me.


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Liz Lemon Moment

Thursday, November 25, 2010

21 Weeks & Counting

As promised I am posting about my most recent and (not so) mysterious last post.

My 2nd sonogram was scheduled well over a month ago for November the 18th at 10 AM. Or so I thought (I schedule every appointment I have these days for 10 AM if possible because it's when I know I can be awake, functioning, and wherever it is I need to be). I could be wrong. I lost the original paper I was given with the info about where I needed to go and when. Naturally, at my next appointment I requested another sheet so that I had something tangible to insure I arrive when and where I was supposed to be.

A cruel count-down began about a week before the fateful date. Cruel because I announced how many days until the 2nd sonogram via my personal Facebook but was not going to be telling everyone the info they wanted to know that day. The plan was to announce it to my family via text message as soon as we knew boy or girl and then to tell the boys family today.

Why wait the extra week? Because everyone here in Ohio wanted to be the first to know and no one can keep a secret. To make sure that no one got upset that they weren't the first to know and to keep our news our news we wanted a time when everyone should be together to be told at the same time (much like we tried to do when we announced my pregnancy.)

That Morning
November 18th (obviously) arrived and we. were. excited. The boy asked for part of his morning off from work to go with me to the hospital. I felt like we were cutting time just a bit shorter than we should. And once in the car, and not far from the hospital, with barely any time left (it was about 9:50 AM) - I decided to look once more at the paper. And oh. dear. gawd. The paper said the appointment was at 9:15 AM!!!

Now not only am I worried about our being late but very worried that they will refuse to see us. The only real consolation was the paper saying the appointment was for between November 18th and November 27th.

We arrive and manage to park on the wrong side of the hospital. I waddled (yes, I waddle now) as quickly as I could along with the boy to what we thought should be the correct side of the hospital. We rush into an elevator, hit "6", and wait for our floor. By this point I'm feeling less than "okay." I really hadn't eaten any breakfast, a quarter of a saltine (but I knew I was supposed to be getting Burger King after!), and was now feeling sweaty, dizzy, and a bit nauseated. Feeling victorious but still pretty lost we walk up to a nurses station and tell them what we are there for. The nurse informed us we were on the wrong 6th floor. Seriously!? That can happen!? The nurses take one look at me and ask if I'm going to be okay. Feeling like poop and definitely unable to focus on anything other than getting to see my baby again I tell them the only response I have to give them right now, "probably not but I'll make it."

Once on the correct 6th floor and speed waddling down the hallway to where we feel has to be the correct place the boy speaks with the woman at the desk. Who wastes no time in telling us we're late. In fact. She tells us the appointment was at 9:30! and the sonographer just left! I guess about then she finally got a look at me and realized I wasn't okay. Not okay enough she called for a nurse.

I was told I could sit down around the corner and she would see if anyone could do the sonogram. I was brought graham crackers (which can be seen on my chest in the photo in my most recent post) and apple juice and eventually a wheelchair (which I greatly appreciated because standing had stopped being my strong suit.)

They located a person to do the sonogram and checked me in.

The (Anatomy) Sonogram
The person who did the sonogram had admittedly not been doing this for very long but refused to say how short a time or where she went to school. She took what must have been at least 30 pictures. All pictures were blurry (Shown are the two best pictures we got. Also everything we got looks pretty creepy as you can see.) and she was rarely able to see whatever she was looking for.

However, for a few moments we were fortunate enough to see our baby's profile. And. I. Cried.

When she first began looking the boy and I thought we saw a flicker of "boy parts" but those possible parts were not in view again through the rest of our visit.

Tadpole was very obviously awake that morning. Every time the woman pressed down on my belly, Tadpole kicked right back where they pushed. Seeing and feeling a kick simultaneously is an interesting sensation, possibly more-so when I realized the sonographer could feel it as well.

The sonographer had such a difficult time that she went to get a doctor to look over her pictures and have a look at Tadpole herself. When the boy and I asked what would happen if the sex was not determined that day they told us we'd have to be surprised on delivery day.

Tadpole kept it's legs crossed through the entire sonogram. The legs moved but stayed crossed. When the doctor went around behind Tadpole to look to see if we have a boy or girl, we saw a clear view of butt cheeks and then those very butt cheeks decided to sit down on a foot and block anything.

In the end the doctor said from what she can see her "gut" says the baby is a girl, but for us not to go buying pink.

About Tadpole

From what we were told Tadpole (on that day) is 14 ounces, has 10 toes, 10 fingers, and looks healthy!

What Now?
I've been unhappy with the level of care at the clinic I've been going to and a month or three ago decided I was more than a little interested in switching the hospital at which I was to deliver.

Don't get me wrong, the ladies at my clinic are nice. But the care of a doctor instead of a mid-wife is something I prefer with our first baby and I would like someone whom when I tell them, "I've been sick for 2 days", will ask a better follow-up question than, "we gave you that paper of which medications you're allowed to take right?"

I see the new doctor on Monday and should be beginning the necessary steps to change delivery hospitals. We are also hoping for a more skilled sonographer to take another look to give us a better answer than a "gut" answer if at all possible.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Oh I Believe in Yesterday. . .

Things have been crazy, busy, and crazy-busy over here lately.

I plan to say more about this photo in about a week. Til then, I guess you'll have to hold tight. But please cross your everything that the things I am looking into that will have to do with all of this work out quickly and a little more easily than they have begun.

But no fears everyone, the above statement does not at all mean that anything is wrong with baby nom!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Another Liz Lemon Moment

It seemed like time for another official Liz Lemon moment

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Just 5 Ingredients

Last Friday, Om Nom Nom Studios "office" relocated. It was a very necessary move that came up somewhat suddenly. The flooding and it's implications (things like insect infestation and mold) that I mentioned months ago were still a very real issue for the boy and I. With the situation worsening daily, relocation was a must.

The move has been difficult, and I don't just mean because I was without internet for a week (our modem was stolen from our new front porch the day we were relocating), but because of some sort of error on the part of Columbia Gas leaving us without heat.

Soup weather just became that much more soup weather for me. In my unpacking I looked through my own personal cook book for a recipe my mother clipped out of a magazine years ago and gave to me. I remember making many, many pots of this cream-based soup when I lived in South Philadelphia. [Shown: Leftovers brought home from the boys grandmother's house]

Originally I intended to make a half batch of this soup but in the end decided to head over to the boy grandmother's house and make the entire batch to share with her and anyone else who was interested.

Impressions of the soup:
*One of the boys aunts was able to find it enjoyable to the point that she requested the recipe.
*Grandma's impression of the soup was that she had to apologize to me and that the soup was not as horrible as she'd anticipated (it's here that I think it would be best to mention not only is the boy a picky eater but it would seem his entire family is.)
*Lizzie K. said that the soup reminded her of her mothers crab dip.

So, for the aunt who requested it, and any others who may be interested in a very quick and easy cream-based soup, here is the recipe as it appears on the paper taped into my cookbook:

"This satisfying soup simmers for just 15 minutes, yet boasts the kind of rich flavour that typically requires a couple of hours on the stove.

Crab-Corn Bisque

In a large suacepan, stire together two 14.75-ounce cans creamed corn; 2 cups half-and-half; 2 cups frozen potatoes with onions and peppers, thawed; 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme; 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Simmer, uncovered, over medium-high for 12 minutes. Stir in 1/2 pound imitation crab meat (surimi), coarsely chopped; simmer for 2 minutes longer or until the coup is heated through. Makes 6 servings at $1.53 each.

Nutrient Value Per Serving:
295 calories, 9 g fat (6 g saturated), 11 g protein, 43 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 1,064 mg sodium, 48 mg cholesterol."

*I chose to use fresh potato but didn't stop to think about the cook time of the potato in relation to the rest of the soup which left me with a much longer cook time. If you prefer to use fresh potato, cook them first before adding them to the soup.
*I used green peppers the boys grandmother had frozen that were previously fresh. I just barely thawed them, chopped them, and threw them into the pot.
*No onions went into the creation of this soup because most members of the boys family are anti-onion. Knowing his aunt wanted to try it and learning that she did not like onions - they were left out.

Monday, October 25, 2010

The Story of Om Nom Nom Part 2

Two days ago marked the beginning of my (estimated) fourth month of pregnancy and yesterday was the one-year anniversary for the opening of Pro-Portional Designs. Now seems like a good time to give you part two of the story of Om Nom Nom.

In mid-to-late March of 2009, still only a few months into my new married life and coping with the loss of my youngest brother-in-law, my husband was called back into active duty by the Army. We were told that after a brief period of in-processing in South Carolina he would be sent to Iraq. He was to be in South Carolina that April. [Picture shown was taken by my husband while in South Carolina]

Q's birthday is in April. With such a day coming and the grief still entirely too new and unbelievable, this impending date only adding to the stresses our families were now under.

It was decided that a family cruise would be a good idea for everyone.

Video shot and edited by my brother-in-law Cody.

There was so much to do with so little time. My husband and I officially dropped-out of school (there are forms you can fill out), he left his job, *we informed our landlord (making sure to give him a copy of my husbands orders) that we would have to leave, and we packed up everything. My husband didn't want me far from his brothers while he was away, so at his request/suggestion, I placed the majority of our items into a storage unit down the road from my in-laws house, and the rest (**items I felt would comfort me and furnish a bedroom) was moved to their house.

At that time, an addition was being built onto my in-laws house, there was no ground entrance (ladder only), no door to separate the inside of the room from the great outdoors and no door into the room from the main portion of the house.

The day I took my husband to the airport my husband's immediate family (mother, father, and brothers) went with us to a sort of, "going-away lunch." My husband requested that his family members each give him an item to remember them by while he would be away.

While my husband was away I shared the living room with one of the boys, whose bedroom was also the living room. A few boxes were in the house with me but none were able to be unpacked as I had no proper room. Each morning I would head outside, climb up the ladder to the unfinished room, and fill a tote bag with items I felt I would need to get ready for the day (clothes, underwear, shampoo). I got really tired of having to do this every day and soon started putting enough items in my bag to make it up to 3 days before needing another trip up the ladder.

I lived this way for a little over a month when the Army ultimately decided they did not want to keep my husband and send him to Iraq. Not having ones husband sent to Iraq is a definite win, but being left with no money, no jobs, and no home - is not.

Once back in Ohio, my previous sleeping/board arrangements were no longer appropriate. The living room simply would not accommodate 1 15 year-old boy and 1 married couple. My husband did his best to make the unfurnished room containing our things into something remotely habitable.

We separated the large piles of plywood meant for further construction of the room into two piles and pushed them together to form a make-shift box spring. What we used for a bed went through it's own evolution. I believe at first we shared my sleeping bag. Later we laid down a few blankets, a couple for padding and a couple to sleep under. The final outcome after many attempts to form a "proper" bed was to procure a queen sized air mattress which we pushed up against the actual box springs and mattress of a very old bed. It was un-even but it was better than what we began with.

Through all of this, I continued knitting. I knit on the couch when the living room was my room and once my husband moved us into the unfurnished "tree house" I was at least closer to where I had been keeping my yarn. It was during my time there that I created the "burger beanie", which only lead to a lot more foodie and sometimes geeky items.

It was during my time in that "tree house" that I announced on my own personal facebook page my hopes/intentions to move forward with an Etsy shop that would feature most of the items I had been posting to my wall for the previous months. People were very supportive and some even seemed excited. That show of support and excitement made me forget all about my initial worry of "why bother trying this when someone else seems to have had the same idea a year or two before me?" Besides, the (majority of) ideas I had, weren't anything I was seeing from anyone else.

Eventually my husband was able to find work and we had saved ***just enough to move out of our "tree house" before winter fully set in. We didn't move out of our "tree house" until mid-October, and when you primarily live outside - IT'S COLD!!!! [In the picture shown: Myself in the Foundling Nemo hat that has been for sale since the stores opening and two sweaters trying to keep warm up in the tree house.]

Things were incredibly difficult, even after finally finding a place to lay our heads down indoors. I began tearing apart items I had knitted for myself to provide yarn to make items for the store, in hopes that something would manage to help me support our small family. My TARDIS blanket eventually became parts of different items now sold in the store, most notably, my Milk "feed bag." The entire blanket has not been used yet but all of the yarn has now been designated for store purposes.

Later that same month of our move in I finally reached my goal of " having no less than 20 items" before opening my store, chose a launch date, started the Facebook fan page, and opened my store.

During these first three months we were shown amazing kindness by a woman I met on Ravelry that for all intents and purposes could be considered a stranger. We have never met in person and only spoken via Ravelry forum, Ravelry mail, and eventually Facebook.

After hearing that once again I had gone to the grocery store only to come up so short I was unable to buy food, I received an e-mail via Facebook. She made all of the necessary arrangements to send us money to insure we were able to eat! I would be able to pick it up the next morning at Wal Mart.

The next morning at Wal Mart I told the employee about what this woman was doing for us and she too could barely believe it.

My husband and I would like to once again thank Charlene of the Savannah Ravel Rousers.[Hypertext links to Ravelry will only work for those of you who have Ravelry accounts] We'd also like to thank Wendy from Dollfoolery who gave us canned and dry goods, sent me a care package for my birthday, and donated a garbage bag full of yarn to help build my store.

On October 24th, 2009 I opened my Etsy shop and on November 23rd, 2009 I opened "the doors" and was ready for business. It's been a really difficult road, at times littered with hate mail from fans of another designer, but for the most part, I have still managed to enjoy it.

So there you have the story of Om Nom Nom. I did my best to compress the details and events as well as keep you (hopefully) mildly entertained.

* While living at my in-laws house I received a bill closing in on $2000 from them. They claimed we broke our lease (ignoring the clause that in an instance like being called back to active duty we were able to leave) and said we should pay no less than another months rent as well as cover their expenses to make the repairs to the house they refused to make before we moved in ($50 of which was for "dirt in basement" - it was a 100 year-old house with a stone basement).

** These items were mostly books, yarn, and the elements that make up my tea corner.

*** U-haul provided by my loving parents who knew we'd never be able to afford one.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Story of Om Nom Nom Part 1 (Again)

I want to thank everyone for your well wishing and your understanding during the other day's, "day of silence."

I tried once before to explain the story/beginnings of Om Nom Nom Studios / Pro-Portional Designs. Because it's a bit complicated and long I'm going to do my best to make it as short as I can. But the story will most likely span 2 posts.

Technically I learned to knit when I was five years-old from my mother, the only other knitter in a family full of crocheters. Watching too much television can lead to the same results as reading too much WebMD before a doctors visit - you very well may think you know something you know nothing about. So at five years-old, after finding my mothers knitting needles and some yarn I attempted to knit all on my own. Knitting turned out to be nothing like cartoons make it seem and I suppose my mother found her little girl failing miserably at knitting as a result of watching too much cartoon knitting.


See how the mouse holds those needles and the results of his knitting just cascade down ever so nicely? I've never seen anyone hold needles this way.

Knitting didn't become something I "officially" did every, single day until October 2008 when I lost my youngest brother-in-law in a car accident. He was only 13, and losing him not only devastated the family I had only married into two months before but what seemed like at least an entire county.

My husband and I spent a lot of time at my in-laws house, sleeping on the couch just to be near the family, and to help in whatever ways we could. The boy missed a lot of work and I missed a lot of school at first. Our neighbors were nice enough to clean my house for me while we were so rarely there to help and (many of) the people of Perry County, Ohio were kind enough to bring non-stop food to my in-laws house to make sure everyone had something to eat.

Eventually the boy and I had to return back home, back to school, and back to work - doing our best to move forward. Being an unemployed student left me with more free time than I cared for and I was in need of a distraction. I had the incredible urge to make a blanket to keep my hands and mind occupied. I told the boy of my plans and made sure it was okay if I went and bought yarn to make a blanket. Up to this point everything I ever knitted were garter stitch scarves made from yarn procured at Wal-Mart.

After consulting google for yarn stores in the Columbus area I found four: The Yarn Shoppe, Heavenly Creations, Temptations, and Knitters Mercantile. The only one of these that was currently open on Sundays at that time, was Knitters Mercantile, frequently known to area knitters as, The Merc.

The Merc was full of so many yarns that I had no idea where to begin. Ultimately I chose (I believe) one skein of Rowan Big Wool for my blanket. Never having made a blanket I had less than no concept of just how much yarn goes into the creation of a quality blanket. Having now made this "mistake" I recommend against using Rowan anything, let alone Big Wool to make a blanket unless your last name is Trump, Rich, Gates, or something of the like.

Let's pause to do a little knitting and financial math here shall we? A no frills blanket can easily take 2000 yards of yarn or more. Rowan Big Wool costs about $15.00 per skein. One skein of Rowan Big Wool contains 87 yards of yarn. To create a blanket requiring roughly 2000 yards of yarn, using Rowan Big Wool that contains only 87 yards of yarn per skein, leaves you needing at least 23 skeins of Rowan Big Wool, at the rate of $15.00 per skein, this leaves you spending around $345.00 on your blanket before taxes.

The TARDIS blanket was never completed. It was to be my first intarsia project, but I chickened out, and the skills I used to create the "illusion" of intarsia I later learned were below sub-par and never would have made it in the long run. It wasn't long until I visited the yarn store I originally wanted to go to, Heavenly Creations. It was there that I initially met Wendy (who now runs Dollfoolery) and Amy (of "I Can Knit That".)

Wendy, introduced me to the oh-so-deliciously-soft-and-warm yarn, Malabrigo, my very first day in that store. Amy, sparked my interest in Tim Hortons. I decided to make a Dr. Who scarf and at Wendy's "here-touch-this-stuff" I chose to make it out of Malabrigo. This epic scarf that takes a lot of people a significant amount of time to knit until completion only took me 6 days in my grief. In the picture the 12.5 foot long scarf (unblocked) is folded over and wrapped with a giant slipknot.

I lost a lot of weight knitting and grieving. When I wasn't in school I sat on my couch listening to audio books and knitting - pausing only to eat oranges. Eventually, I was back to knitting in class (something I hadn't done since high school.)

My lust for all things Whovian lead Amy to remember me as "the Doctor Who girl".

First sewing machine project shown above - giant plush TARDIS.

Very soon my projects started branching to the non-Whovian in nature: Sweaters inspired by paintings like The Scream, Waterlilies, and Starry Night. I started making so many items that I didn't think I'd have room in my house or in my schedule to wear and enjoy them all. It was then that I opened my first Etsy shop. And it was a tremendous flop.

Around the time I made my own version of the "Roll-ups" (sushi scarf) pattern that can be found in Debbie Stoller's "Son of Stitch 'n Bitch", it was on. All I could think of was food in yarn. I was bursting with ideas of things I could make. I started out by looking online to see other sushi scarves people had made and then to see if any of my other ideas about food in yarn had already been done. Low and behold some of them had. This is when I discovered Twinkie Chan and honestly my bubble burst, I felt like I couldn't sell my foodie creations if someone else had already opened their own store a couple of years before me.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Accidental Pre-Mommy Learning Experience

Tonight I had a mini crash course in what I may expect in the years that are soon to come.

Picture it, dinner time. I'm hungry, the boy is hungry, the dog is hungry and no one wants to cook. Fantastic.

Usually I have an idea of what I'd like to make for dinner ahead of time but in recent months there's no reason for it because by time for dinner Tadpole may want something entirely off menu.

A few days ago my cousin Brandy posted that her sister-in-law was making her pork chops. PORK CHOPS! ME WANT!

I like, at all times, to have some pork chops in the freezer. After a few days, or possibly a week (who can tell? - the days all run together when you don't have a "real" job) I finally got around to doing something about thawing those frozen chops. And by "I finally got around to doing something", I mean this morning before the boy left for work I asked him to move them from the freezer into the fridge.

Back to the dilemma of everyone being hungry and no one being willing to cook. The result was the same as always. I man up and get in the kitchen.

Too tired to properly braise pork chops, create a demi-glace, and separately make some mushrooms to go with mine (because the boy doesn't eat "fungi"), I decide to fry them.

Side dishes would have to take a bake seat tonight because there were four thumbs in this house belonging to "this person" who wasn't willing to put in the effort. This knowledge made me play in my mind that scene from the chickenpox South Park episode.

Cartman: So, what kind of side dishes are we going to enjoy this evening with our frozen waffles?
Cartman: Am I to understand there will be no side dishes?

In an attempt to cut down on time in the kitchen I prepare a zip-lock bag with what can essentially be considered a shake 'n bake mix. The plan was to have the boy be my helper and shake while I coat and re-coat the floured and panko'd pork chops as well as fried them. As I prepared my personal shake 'n bake mix I envisioned a toddling Tadpole in the kitchen helping mommy fry food for dinner.

The process went much slower than anticipated, much as I have been told that things go when you have a little one who wants to help. The difference here is the boy didn't particularly want to help. Visions of a toddling Tadpole helping "shake" food for dinner have not faded but have been altered to mommy having better sense and starting dinner much earlier.

The boy had never eaten fried pork chops and I am always happy to be the direct cause of his experiencing and enjoying a new dish. In the end, all parties involved were in agreeNOMt. The boy even decided to make his own inside-out chopwhich.

Thankfully dessert was much easier. Take 1 mini watermelon, cut in half, and share with a loved one. Feed remainder to furry loved one.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Another Liz Lemon Moment

It's been a hot minute since my last blog. There are a lot of things going on here right now. I am trying to get some more aprons together for you before I load any to Etsy and being pregnant has been (to say the least) a very interesting new development that is taking some getting used to.

I'll do my best in the near future to leave you with a more involved blog but it's been a while since I left you with a Liz Lemon moment.

And now, Liz Lemon:

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

I Am A Time Lord

Pro-Portional Designs is going to turn one very soon (October 24th) and is about to expand. Over this last year you have seen me move from a few small bags, to adding a couple of scarves, to introducing baby things, and for those who do not already know – aprons.

The aprons are not the expansion I’m referring to, that would make my posts saying that I had some new announcements coming up for you anything but new.

My trip to Virginia was not only because I was home-sick after not being able to visit for over a year but choosing to surprise my mother with this news on her birthday. Harder still for the boy, was waiting just over another week to tell his family on his own birthday as planned.

This morning the boy and I attended my very first sonogram for our first baby. This news has been hard not to blurt out for months now and harder still with one of the two friends I told leaving “hinty” comments all over my pages (*shakes fist at the perpetrator*).

The boy and I tried our hardest to prepare to be unable to see any distinguishable baby and at first it looked like things were going just that way. Suddenly, there was a very clear baby on the screen and a very clear heart-beat. For years we had been under the impression that babies do not kick in the womb and what is mistaken for kicks is actually the baby turning over or practicing breathing. This was not at all the case this morning. Once the doctor went in for a close-up view we saw a flurry of activity

I have concluded that having this second heart within my body is enough to now classify me as a time lord (see physiology).

Due Date: March 31st, 2011
Estimated date of conception: June 23rd, 2010
Boy or girl? We have no idea yet and will not be able to find out for a while yet.
Will we want to find out? Yes.
Will we tell you when we know? If you want to know then yes.
What day did you find out? We were 100% sure Friday, August 13th
Names? We have a few in mind and if any of you want to throw a name into the ring for consideration we are willing to listen. Right now we are not sharing our top running baby names but will tell you some of the silly names friends and family have thrown out as well as what we are currently referring to our fetus was (Tadpole).

Suggested names (mostly from brother-in-law's and their friends):
Roger (Suggested by a family friend named Roger)
Ken More
Penelope (there was a second part to this that I can't remember but it ended up sound like a hooker name)
Ichabod (but most likely they meant this one)

It's at this point I should probably mention in the boys family we aren't all known for giving pets and toys "standard" names and the fact that my in-laws live on a farm with a thousand animals to name as we please, doesn't help.

Examples of (a few) pet names:
Cats: Commander Caviar, Admiral Tuna, Steak, Seven, Cheeto (shown), Snacks, Fox-bear, Mayday
Ducks: Huey, Dewey, Louie
Geese: Peep, Napoleon, Genghis Khan
Pig: Piggy
Rabbits: Bubbles, Fudball
Goat: Pollyanna
Dogs: Awesome Possum, Cthulhu, Panda, Fudd, Fattie, Noodles

Monday, August 30, 2010

What Would You Do With A Buttload of Figs?

I have some ideas but there's no real point in thinking too hard about it unless a buttload of figs became a reality.

At the moment I can think of three ways to make that happen:

1)Start growing your own figs - lots of them

2)Buy figs - lots of them

3)Head over to Love & Olive Oil like I did and enter to win a buttload of figs.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Nomming At The Mad Greek

For days now I have had a strong desire for gyro. I'm partial to The Pita Pit on campus, but because I no longer live on campus, some effort is involved with getting to Pita Pit. Effort the boy had no desire to exert.

I charged him with the task of finding gyro's in our own section of the city and he came up with a place we have passed frequently but never tried before called, The Mad Greek.

Online reviews passed his inspection and off we went.

Upon arrival I noticed a drive-thru window. The boy has in the recent past mentioned that he felt any Greek place with a drive-thru window runs the high likely-hood that it should be avoided. It seems he has not forgotten this statement but did not notice the window as we drive past it while looking for a parking spot.

When you walk in there is a small front area with a few deli counters full of what I assume was Mediterranean fare (I didn't really look because I was pretty focused on getting food into my tummeh'.) Off to the right of the counters we found a hostess ready to seat us right away.

The rest of the restaurant is still very small with tables that, for my taste, were disturbingly close together*, but there were a lot of windows making this tiny restaurant relatively light.

Appetizers will not be a problem at the Mad Greek, there is quite a list to choose from. I decided on the spanikopita and some skordalia.

Our waitress was very sweet and pleasant but not frequently where she was able to be found. However, it was only her second day working there and for all I know, her first time as a waitress. Any mistakes that were made throughout the night she smiled and was very apologetic.

The appetizers came at a reasonable speed. The spanakopita was alright. The kind of spanakopita I grew up with and love leaves you reeking of it by the time you have finished. This was not at all that sort of spanakopita. I would recommend this to first timers, those who may not be quite so picky about it, or those who crave it badly enough that it doesn't matter how dead on the taste is. Would I be willing to eat it again? Yes, but it doesn't even rank if I were to create a list of the top spanakopita's I have eaten in my life. Is it better than the spinach and feta in a pocket sandwich from Amy's Kitchen? That may be for you to decide.

On to that skordalia. Skordalia is a dip that I can always get excited about, yesterday was no exception and that's really too bad. This was definitely the worst skordalia of my life. What was supposed to be a thick puree of Greek goodness was what can at best be described as soupy (and not necessarily a particularly good potato soup.)

After a bit of effort to wave down our waitress we ordered. I had the large gyro sans banana peppers and the boy had the large gyro with only meat and sauce. Alright foodies and particularly you Greek food lovers like myself, I'm sure you noticed it. That's right. I had to say "without banana peppers." Never in my life have I heard of a banana pepper finding its way onto a gyro. I was a little horrified. The sauce to be found on these gyros was not tzatziki, it was what was described as "creamy garlic sauce." The boy also opted to order a side of fries.

The gyros came but the fries did not. It once again took a bit of effort to find our waitress and let her know but she worked to remedy the solution quickly.

The gyros were quite tasty and I wasn't horribly disappointed, I would and will eat these in the future.

The fries were covered in some sort of indistinguishable seasoning which immediately left me disheartened but I forged on anyway. Perhaps I shouldn't have. The fries were not very good. What started off as a tasteless fry as you tried more became an oddly sweet fry. We asked for ketchup seeing what this would do for these forlorn potatoes. There is no other way to put this: the ketchup was completely disgusting and sweet, almost like sugar or some sort of sweetener had been dumped in to make what it may have began life as go further.

I'm not sure what happened. Perhaps management noticed the issues of plates not being cleared away as they emptied and more food coming or our need to flag down the waitress and her returning with more food that may have been obviously overlooked, but we were suddenly being taken care of by multiple servers that we had not previously seen. Including what seemed to be the owner himself. Drinks were refilled and we were repeatedly asked if we were alright and if we needed anything.

When the time came to pay the check, I had a bit left on my plate. The waitress whisked it off and packed it up for me, which I didn't expect because I had seen another patron packing their own food up to go for them-self. I also ordered some hummus to go. I tried the hummus this morning for breakfast and it was similar to the skordalia experience. Worst. Hummus. Ever.

Believe it or not kids, I didn't consider the night or the restaurant completely awful. Maybe it was just because I enjoy date night with my husband so much but I don't think the Mad Greek experience was a bust.

My overall rating is three stars. I liked it but didn't love it. It's very convenient to where I live and the gyros were worth remembering for when I want some in the future. Would I travel from campus to get here and try it? No, definitely not. If you are looking for authentic Greek - this is not it. But really, you shouldn't look for authentic anything that isn't Ethiopian food in this area of Ohio because you probably won't find it.

* The people at the next table could not only hear what we were saying if they wanted to but the couple was pretty obviously attempting to do so. They also paid attention to what we ordered (even though they were there first) and made a comment on their way out (conversational and moderately polite but not at all necessary.)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A Word About Food Theivery

All food thievery is wrong. Totally, unbelievable, undeniably, you're-going-to-burn-for-this wrong. I feel even strong about this when it comes to sandwiches. If you doubt how strongly I feel about this - you can ask my husbands grandma and his cousin.

ANYHOW. I am sitting here waiting for dinner and all I can think about is the Ross Geller sandwich with the moist maker. I have decided that in the near future, I will require one (or I might die.) I got sidetracked, by you tube, when looking for a "recipe" or a transcript from the show to remember exactly what goes on it.

In conclusion, food thievery is wrong. Don't do it. Ever. You'll burn for it. Now I'm off to eat my dinner.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Last Night at The Tuna

In the Gateway in The Ohio State Campus area there is a local bar called Ugly Tuna Saloona. A place I personally like for their drinks that come in a fishbowl served up with what seems like six billion straws and a toy alligator filled with a shot.

About a week or two ago I got a Facebook event notification from Ugly Tuna about jello wrestling. I'd never seen jello wrestling in person and thought it may be an interesting way to spend a Friday night.

The day of the event I went back to the Facebook event page and looked it over to make sure I could properly formulate plans for the evening. And I got distracted. By prize money.

The flooding in our house has lead to a lot of extra expense that we cannot afford. As a matter of fact, we needed the prize money to make sure we made it until the boys next pay check.

I text messaged some friends and family to see if they thought I stood a snowballs chance is Hades in a wrestling match. Almost all results were positive. My fathers response was (no surprise here) like none other. He basically thought I was going to be in some sort of street brawling prize fight because I was being intentionally vague and avoiding telling my daddy that I'd be jello wrestling. It got to the point where I needed to clarify his little girl had no notions of high-stakes, back ally, wrestling for money.

My text: "In jello"
His: "Crickets"

The boy was kind enough to quickly round me up a small cheering section and we all met at Tuna around 9:30 so there would be enough time to sign up for the event and stake out spots to stand.

The inflatable pool the wrestling was to take place in was already out and up against the stage to keep it out of the way until the time was much nearer and they would lay it out.

[Hunting through your clothes for jello wrestling appropriate apparel is somewhat interesting. I picked a pair of shorts I don't mind if they were destroyed and a shirt that was already partially destroyed and slightly ill-fitting to go over my bikini.]

The event started late (around 11 instead of 10). While we waited for people to sign up and the games to begin we watched the inflatable pool be filled by security with trash bag after trash bag of jello (most of what appeared to be lime but I definitely saw some orange once).

During the sign-up and wait it was revealed that contestants would actually be fishing toy sharks out of the pool instead of a straight wrestling match). The first girl to get eight out of the possible fifteen toy sharks in her bucket would be the winner.

When the time I went up on stage and stepped behind a screen where I was given a shirt and some boxer shorts. When I found out I didn't have to wear them I chose not to and set them with my clothes.

I was not first to go and I was glad of it. I wanted to watch and see what to expect.

I won the first round and had actually thought I lost and was pretty bummed.

Between rounds we were handed a giant wad of paper towels to do our best to towel off while we waited.

I went three or four total rounds, each with a different girl. One in particular, with another brown beauty who if I caught it correctly was named Rachel, had gone a particularly rough two rounds. The shark finding turned into actual jello wrestling / cat fighting and not of her own devise from what I saw. I had no interest in cat fighting this girl so I made sure to shake her hand before the match.

Finally it was down to me and one last girl, Anya. Anya, not unlike myself, had no interest in sudden cat fighting in jello. I assured her I had no intention of picking a fight.

Fortune smiled upon me and I was able to take first prize, adding enough funds to our bank account to insure we make it to the next check. I also got to keep the shirt I was given to wear while wrestling and a Budweiser hat.

The boy was given the camera to get pictures for ya'll, but the bar was so packed (and of course he wanted to watch) so all photos we have are from afterward in the parking lot where I continued to wipe off with some clothes from the trunk of one of our cars. A lot of photos were taken so I feel some may surface on the internet and will keep an eye out to link you to the action shots from the night.

Here are some of my learned facts about jello wrestling:
1) It's only a bit cold when you first get in. You get used to it and it's no sad bad.
2) Jello is beyond hard to just wipe off

3) Your butt is apparently a jello magnet. It will require attention.
4) It turns back into powder when it dries.

Not to over-extend an already lengthy post too far here is a quick, boy's eye view commentary:

Around noon on Friday the wife tells me that she wants to enter a jello wrestling contest. I was stunned, amused, mildly confused, and a bit excited. I told her I'd support her if she chose to do it and went about rounding up a cheering section.

We arrived around 9 to make sure we had time to sign up and were apparently in no danger of not being accepted since they didn't start until after 11. The crowd sucked. I will admit I was disappointed and worried when I found it was shark wrangling rather than jello wrestling since I was confident my wife could whoop those skinny little rich girls but I wasn't sure how fast she could gather toy sharks. Watching the other girls I became confident again that my wife could still beat them, especially the ones who didn't get down and dirty in the jello. So of course she ran through the competition even that last girl who was cheating before the match only to be out-done by my oh so clever wife.

The couple fights in the jello were fun to watch, the fights that almost took place in the crowd were exciting and walking away with a proud yet sticky wife and two hundred dollars richer was fantastic.