Our home has a new resident.

Meet Chuy.

R named him. I picked the spelling . . . in honor of my husband’s favorite Austin restaurant.

Chuy was born on June 21st of last year. His mama was a Black Lab / German Shepherd mix. His daddy was not a purse dog.

He belongs to her.

And he plays with her.

(We love him extra for that.)

He is huge. He is gorgeous. He is sweet and cuddly. He fetches and plays tug of war.

Chuy has the makings of an amazing dog.

He is even helpful.

He helped R put together her floor puzzle.

Except maybe that had something to do with the fact that putting the puzzle together involved snacks.

Mmmm . . . best of all . . . like all good dogs . . . Chuy’s feet smell awesome.



I did it.

I drank the Kool-Aid.

I did it almost two weeks ago but couldn’t bring myself to admit it publicly until now.

I am now an iPhone® carrying member of society.

I succumbed to the pressure of my husband who when we were on vacation announced to me rather emphatically,  “When we get home we’re getting you a real* phone. I’m tired of not being able to find you when we’re in a store.”

Those of you who are acquainted with my husband know that he rarely speaks with passion or emphasis so when this announcement was made it was clear that he was serious.

A bit of cell phone history . . .

My cell phone philosophy for years revolved around the idea that it was purely a tool for my use and convenience. It was all about me being able to call people when I desired. It had nothing to do with those same people being able to reach me at their whim.

I did modify this philosophy slightly when I started shipping my children out the door to a local government-run educational institution. I mean really, what if one of them falls off the monkey bars and breaks an arm or something? I’d like to know about it sooner rather than later. (This is entirely possible with my son being who he is.)

So I started keeping my 5-year-old, non-picture taking, barely texting, hand-me-down, only works in Anchorage cell phone charged (most of the time) and actually taking it with me when I ran errands (most of the time). It was a huge step.

Clearly I am a slave to the latest and greatest technology.

Which is why I so eagerly agreed to start carrying an iPhone®.


Truth:  It is the old model and was on sale for $49.

But now my husband can happily text me or call me when he so desires.

And he’ll get right through on the days I actually turn on the phone.

Thanks for listening,

*By real he ment one that would text and work outside of the state of Alaska.

Thanksgiving Lessons Learned

This year I had to cook Thanksgiving dinner. It has been awhile. And you all know how much I love to cook. (Heavy, dripping sarcasm.)

Last time I did this volume of cooking I had a sous chef (my mother) running around at my beck and call taking care of a million little details. Things like explaining to me that the reason the whipped cream wasn’t working was because I was trying to make it out of half-and-half. 

Yup . . . little things like that.

Anyway, for the most part this year I was unsupervised in the kitchen and I learned a couple of things.

Lesson One:  Before steaming one’s upper body over a giant pot of boiling potatoes it is wise to remove one’s fleece jacket. 

I’m pretty sure no drops of sweat fell in the potatoes. 

Pretty sure. 

Lesson Two:  Every kitchen should have a full on heavy-duty kitchen hot pad mitt thingy.  

See this picture?

See my hands? (Notice specifically the hand holding the potato masher and plunging in and out of the depths of that giant pot . . . the hand suffering from steam burns because I don’t own one of those oven mitts.)

Do you know what it is I am wearing on my hands?

My husband’s wool socks. 


It was his idea. 

He loves mashed potatoes and wasn’t about to let a minor detail like his wife burning herself keep him from getting those potatoes at Thanksgiving dinner. 

Truth be told I was yelling at him to get me the oven mitt from the camping gear. He informed me that there is no oven mitt in the camping gear and came to my rescue with SmartWool®. 

Gotta love a man who thinks on his feet. Or about his feet. Which may be why he brought me socks. 

To all of those who ate the potatoes, I promise the socks were clean. 

The mashed potatoes turned out just fine . . . so I’m told by those people who aren’t allergic to dairy products and actually got to eat them. How can a recipe containing cream cheese and butter possibly be bad? I know because I used to imbibe . . . heavily . . . sigh . . . give me a minute . . . I’m need to pause to reminisce about dairy product consumption . . . mmmmmmm . . .

OK . . . I’m back.

If you want the mashed potato recipe you can get it from its creator here. When you read it you can do your own calculations but as a highly qualified Parks and Recreation Administration major I’m estimating that there are approximately 3,472 calories per teaspoon. However, since it is always good to look on the bright side I’ll just mention the upside of a milk allergy in this situation . . . I don’t have to work off those mashed potato calories.

I’m just sayin’ . . .

Enjoying leftover turkey and naked yams before shopping for an oven mitt,


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