“But Mom, I have to learn to drive in the snow sometime!”
So what is your response to that question anyway?
Bad timing I say.
This is a fairly new pub height table we recently bought for our kitchen area.
I adore it.
Well, until recently I did.
Because, I was sickened when I put a big bowl of turkey broth after Thanksiving on a towel to cool on it. And then I removed the towel later and there was an 8 inch circle of white on the corner of it. The heat had gone through the towel and discolored it.
And it was hideously ugly!
I have to share this trick with you.
I was skeptical. Very skeptical.
Our daughter-in-law Lindsay told us she’d read that if you use an iron with the steam function on and iron quickly over top of a thin towel or cloth, the spot would disappear.
So today I tried it.
And look! IT’S GONE!
Glory Hallelujah! I love you Lindsay!
***Please note that different surfaces may react differently. I tested it with just a tiny spot first, as I would recommend you to do the same.
Yesterday, Mr. Wonderful had the day off of work.
Like the wonderful man that he is, he spent most of the day preparing for the abominable storm coming our way.
People have been dreading it all week and the fear has been building. This is Oklahoma, after all, the Snow/Ice Fear Capital of the World.
Mr. Wonderful took down our gazebo tent that we hang out in bug-free on the patio. Here’s a view from summer.
No need for bug protection now.
Nothing but a bare frame and a curious dog left on our patio. The grill is tucked away and the sides of the gazebo are taken down. Oklahoma wind and gazebo sides don’t get along real well in these here parts.
Good boy Sam! Because you are not cross-bred, you still have doggie instincts and know that something is coming…but whatever is that orange cord going to…?
Why it’s a cord going over to the tree, where Mr. Wonderful is on a ladder with a …
A chain saw.
See in Oklahoma, a tree limb jutting out over your home is a lethal weapon when ice is predicted…
Or an insurance nightmare, take your pick.
Now mind you, this is what I came home to on my lunch hour.
Nevermind that there was no one home if he cut off a limb or fell off that ladder.
He was going to be a lumberjack before our storm hit and protect us!
He also had no clue I was taking pictures of his backside until…
No matter Mr. Wonderful, ya still are lookin’ pretty fetching in your OU jersey and your backwards John Deere cap…and those goggles?
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Clueless and Cluelesser are trying to figure out what’s coming.
“Hey Abby, what’s goin on?”
Seriously, does this dog look like she has a clue?
Or this one, for that matter?
But heck, they sure are cute aren’t they? Because we all know the dough we shell out for pure-breds is purely for cuteness, and not intelligence.
So anyway, if you don’t hear from me for a couple days, the power has probably gone out. We’re supposed to get like -an inch of freezing rain and gusty winds. Here’s the equation:
Inch of rain
+ Gusty Winds
= Downed Power Lines
This past weekend, Melisa called and invited me to a Girl’s lunch with her and her daughter Mariah and since both my girls were gone, another favorite young lady from our small group – Caitlyn.
After much deliberation between our more refined tastebuds (note that I didn’t say “older”), and the youngsters “just give me pizza” taste, we settled on Iguana Mexican Grill. Located downtown, right next door to Sara Sara Cupcakes, you can move right on over for dessert over there! Big plus!
I was a little tentative about trying Iguana Grill based on a few friends opinions of it. Here’s what I left with -if you like gourmet, you’ll love Iguana Mexican Grill. If you like pretty simple tex-mex food, you’ll be better off going to Ted’s or somewhere a little more traditional. Me being the gourmet lover, I enjoyed it.
On entering Iguana, you realize you’re not in Kansas anymore, Toto. It’s funk-i-fied decor makes you feel like you’re not in Oklahoma either.
We sat in this room and its hip brick walls, rustic wood and huge brightly painted pictures gave air to a trendy-cool feeling.
We received what we thought to be the typical, first, free offering of chips and salsa.
The chips, I might say, were but typical, but the salsa? Oh me, I love this stuff. Fresh and mildly-chunky with underlying hints of lime and cilantro, this was just delicious. It may be the best salsa I’ve had in town.
We decided to start out by ordering The Guacamole ($6.00).
The guac was good and it came out served in the avocado shell, which we found charming. I’m not sure if this was a small or a large, but it was relatively good guacamole and we enjoyed it.
Our waiter was super friendly and gave tips on ordering food. I was torn between the Fish Tacos and the Crab Tacos ($7.00) and he suggested the Crab.
I thought they were really delicious, filled with lump crab meat and smoky thick bacon. The only complaint I have was that the bacon overpowered the delicate flavor of the crab, and I’d like a little less of it in my next order. I loved the creamy/spicy sauce on top that was made with Guajillo Chiles, and maybe sour cream? It was delicious! The sides that I chose were the White Cilantro Beans and they were wonderful. They tasted of cilantro and lime, two of my favorite flavors and I was pleased with them. I also ordered the fresh veggies, which consisted of roasted pablanos, carrots, onions and mushrooms. I would have liked them just a tad more cooked, as some of my carrots were pretty hard to bite, but overall, a great change from beans and rice at more traditional tex-mex places.
Melisa ordered the Steak Torta ($6.50) a Mexican sandwich, filled with grilled steak.
It was topped with grilled onions, peppers and avocado and she loved it. We both tasted her one side of Jicama Slaw and tried to determine how to make it at home. It was fresh and delicious.
Mariah ordered the Tortilla Soup (bowl $6.00).
She didn’t eat much of it, but she’s a picky girl, much like my picky son, and I don’t think it was her thing. I think it was the only thing I didn’t taste…but it looked good.
Caitlyn got the Tacos Al Carbone ($6.50). These were double corn tortilla wrapped and the tortillas had been flash fried in oil. I tasted these and wasn’t crazy about the oily tortillas. Once again, the beef was tender and good.
We were way too full to try the desserts. I would love to go back to Iguana Mexican Grill. I want to try a couple more of their items, including the Premium Salsa, which is an order of four different types of their custom salsa, some of their Ceviche, the Key Lime Pie and maybe sit on the patio in nicer weather and order some Fish Tacos this time. The atmosphere is fun, the prices are very reasonable, and I would recommend this place to anyone who wants something a little different than your typical Mexican platter type restaurants.
Next time? I’m dragging Mr. Wonderful along for the party.
I’d like to hear of your experiences with this restaurant! Please leave a comment below!
IGUANA MEXICAN GRILL
9 NW 9th St
Oklahoma City, OK 73102
Looking for Iguana? Here’s a map to show you where it is!
My mom-in-law sent me an e-mail today touting the various inexpensive uses of coffee filters. And you can buy 1,000 at the Dollar Tree for almost nothing even the large ones.
I thought several of these were good ideas so I thought I’d post it in my Tips N Tricks section of the blog.
1. Cover bowls or dishes when cooking in the microwave. Coffee filters make excellent covers.
2. Clean windows, mirrors, and chrome… Coffee filters are lint-free so they’ll leave windows sparkling.
3. Protect China by separating your good dishes with a coffee filter between each dish.
4. Filter broken cork from wine. If you break the cork when opening a wine bottle, filter the wine through a coffee filter.
5. Protect a cast-iron skillet. Place a coffee filter in the skillet to absorb moisture and prevent rust.
6. Recycle frying oil. After frying, strain oil through a sieve lined with a coffee filter.
7. Weigh messy chopped foods. Place chopped ingredients in a coffee filter on a kitchen scale.
8. Hold tacos. Coffee filters make convenient wrappers for messy foods.
9. Stop the soil from leaking out of a plant pot. Line a plant pot with a coffee filter to prevent the soil from going through the drainage holes.
10. Prevent a Popsicle from dripping. Poke one or two holes as needed in a coffee filter.
11. Put a few in a plate and put your fried bacon, French fries, chicken fingers, etc on them. It soaks out all the grease.
12. Use them to strain soup stock and to tie fresh herbs in to put in soups and stews.
13. Use them as a spoon rest while cooking and clean up small counter spills.
14. Can use to hold dry ingredients when baking or when cutting a piece of fruit or veggies.. Saves on having extra bowls to wash. **Note from Katie – jalepenos anyone?
15. Use as a disposable “snack bowl” for popcorn, chips, etc.
Flash freezing is simply taking a food item and freezing it individually, so that when you want just one of something, the item isn’t frozen together in a huge lump with something else.
For instance, do you ever buy the frozen chicken breasts that you can pull out one at a time? That’s a perfect example. Or say you want to freeze something soft, like tomato paste. What if you want individual portions of tomato paste instead of plopping it all into a bag in one big clump?
Let me show you how simple it is.
I frequently make my Unforgettable Salsa recipe. I usually only use half of the jar of tomato paste.
I simply portion out the rest in tablespoon size clumps.
I plop these onto a piece of wax paper that’s setting on top of a plate.
Then I pop this into my freezer for a couple of hours. Usually after a couple hours, they are hardened enough that I can pop them off the wax paper into a dated freezer bag.
The next time I need some tomato paste, I can pop one or two tablespoons out of the bag and toss it into a soup or stew.
Other things I flash freeze? Mr Wonderful’s catch(es) of the day.
Sometimes he comes home with up to 15 fish. After he mutilates filets them, we lay them out on wax paper on cookie sheets and pop them into the freezer. Several hours later, we throw them into gallon size freezer bags and then when we want fish, we can take them out one at a time.
Find a sale on chicken breasts but don’t want them all in a big frozen clump? Flash freeze them.
Fresh ginger that you want to store? Peel it, cut it into chunks and flash freeze it.
Anything is easily removable in portions if you flash freeze. Try it!
Time…does it get a bit hazy for you?
Do you often find yourself with that age-old thought…”Where did the time go?”
Did you wake up one day and realize a year has gone by and you can’t remember how?
I’ve been thinking a lot about time these days. With two gone to college and one recently starting to drive…
Because you know, once they get their license, it’s a whole new world…
Here’s something to try to make you realize time gets away from you. Try scanning all your kids’ old baby and school pictures into your computer for safe-keeping. You realize someone has been mysteriously aging your children.
You find out that things like this have happened…
What once was this….
And it’s shocking to realize that it didn’t strike just one child….it got this one too…
She turned into this…
It struck all three of them.
Even my baby.
Look at how precious my baby boy was…
He’s practically a man.
I remember these days oh so well.
So here’s the thing.
Do you want to wake up one day and realize your kids’ time with you is about over? Will you be happy that you spent not just quality, but quantity of time with them?
Have you spent enough of it with them, that they will take goodness away with them when they break out into the world alone?
Working with teenagers has caused me to realize something. Every week, we host 30 kids into our home. We’re not young people. We’re parents, so that comes as a surprise to many. I wonder why they keep coming back?
One of our students came back after the summer break and laid in the middle of our family room and said “I just love this place, there’s so much happiness here.” Of course, he doesn’t see our weekly lives, but for some reason, he feels safe and loved at our house. I can’t figure it out, except that we spend time listening and talking to them about their lives.
Even though the teens we work with gripe a lot about their parents, I can tell you this without a doubt. They would love to have a good relationship with their parents. Many of them don’t eat dinner at home around a a table on a weekly basis. Many of them don’t sit down and watch a movie together.
So here’s a question I leave with you.
Where can you meet your son/daughter half-way? Actually, as a parent, sometimes we have to meet them 90-10 with us being the 90.
What interests your son? If it’s paintball, go paintballing with him. If it’s theater, take him to a play. If it’s sports, throw on a jersey and go watch a ballgame. Even more importantly, if he participates in an activity, please go watch him. I can’t tell you how many young men I’ve heard say their parents never attended a game of theirs in high school. I can’t tell you many boys (and girls) over the years I’ve transported to practice and games because their parents wouldn’t do it. Our boys are the fathers of tomorrow.
Our little girls…
Will soon be mamas…
Parents, your kids need your time. They need to know you love them. They need to know that they are more important than your TV shows, your job and your friends, and even how much time you volunteer at the church.
It’s difficult getting them away from the techno-age right now, but schedule a game night, pop popcorn and get around the kitchen table.
The best purchase we’ve ever made was our boat. All six of our kids of various ages love to head out to the lake on a weekend and tube and ski.
Maybe for you it’s camping.
Got girls? Go to the mall (ugh). Take them to a girly lunch somewhere to make them feel special. Every once in awhile, my girls and I and my mom (when she’s here), go to visit our favorite tea room.
Bring them into the kitchen with you to cook and bake. Get them a cute apron.
My girls have started asking to bake and cook when they come home from college on the weekend. And the boy? Well, he’s making a mean homemade mac & cheese and some pretty doggone good salsa too.
This week, shock the stockings off your teenager and tell them you want to take them somewhere or do something. Start a tradition. Talk to them. Get to know them.
Don’t let your time get ahold of you. Take ahold of it. Set an alarm to remind ya if you need to.
But do it!
Do you have anything super cool family things you do or did with your kids? I’d love to hear them!
I’m kind of embarrassed to say this. I live in Oklahoma and always thought that Shawnee Mills was in Shawnee, Oklahoma.
Not so. Actually, the company has 7 facilities located …well…where the wheat grows in Oklahoma, in Arnett, Gage, Minco, Kingfisher, Okarche and Cashion.
Created in 1906 by J. Loyd Ford they are still operating under the leadership of the third generation of Ford family owners.
The capability to process several different kinds of wheat, corn and flour mixtures make them one of the leaders in baking products in the country. They also manufacture cattle feed and a by product of pet food. In fact, their animal feed operation is one of the up and coming and fastest growing plants in the southwest.
Some of their products include a variety of Corn Meal mixes, flours, muffin mixes and pancake and waffle mixes. They also produce gravy and pizza dough mixes.
I like to use their flour. I like to support my local producers. Some of the things I like to make with their flour – just click on the picture to see how it’s made…
Blueberry Crumble Bread.
Triple Cinnamon Snickerdoodle Bars.
Raspberry Buttermilk Cake
Ahhhh….Sticky Toffee Pudding.
My favorites – Pumpkin Cookies with Cream Cheese-N-Spice Frosting.
Next time you’re in the shopping aisle looking for four, why not support Shawnee Mills?
It’s Oklahoma Made.
Tori and Hanna.
Friends since 1st grade.
Hanna moved to Dallas.
Hanna moved back.
Years of closeness followed.
More dances. I watched them primp and furnished Sparkling Cider and cookies while they spent hours getting ready.
Sometimes they parted ways, due to boys or colleges, or whatever, but they always find their way back.
Like at Halloween this year…Marilyn & Biker Chick…
They were too cute.
Just like the other night, when the two of them helped me make Oreo Cheesecake Cupcakes (recipe coming soon!)…….
Kayla. My daughter this summer in Haiti. A mission trip. Her life changed. A visit to an orphanage where people only do what we all admire.
In the past week or so, Haiti has been hit hard, right where she visited. People have died, children are maimed and injured. And yet again today, another aftershock.
We, who have so much, who think we have so little, sit in our warm houses and have no idea.
If you feel the need to donate…and worry about where…here are two links to help. The first is my church who supports 2 orphanages in Haiti. the second is the ministry my daughter visited. They are the real deal …both of them…please help.
God Bless You!
Have you had it on a pizza, or spread across bread at your favorite Italian place? If you have, you know how wonderful it is. If you haven’t, c’mon with me and learn to truly live on the wild and flavorful side of life.
This is a super simple technique.
Preheat your oven to 400º.
Take a head of garlic. (Head is the whole thing, clove is one piece out of the head). Take a sharp knife and chop across the top of it, just enough to expose all the cloves somewhat. Set it on a piece of foil that’s big enough to wrap around it.
I could have actually not chopped as much on this one.
Take some extra virgin olive oil and drizzle it over top of the cloves.
You can go ahead and salt and pepper the tops also. It’ll make em more delicious.
Take your foil and pull it up around the garlic and twist it tightly shut.
Pop this packet into your oven for around 30-35 minutes. You can do more than one of these in a packet if you wish. I usually do 2 whole heads in one packet. And the great news is, there is no clean-up…just toss the foil in the trash.
After 30 minutes take your foil pack out of the oven and open it. Allow it to cool a bit so as not to scorch your hands.
Holding and squeezing from the bottom of the head, gently squeeze and the lovely golden cloves will now coming squishing out into a bowl.
This is wonderful smeared across toasted french bread. Throw it into your mashed potatoes before you mash them. Wowsa! It’s also fabulous dropped by clumps on top of white pizza (with an alfredo sauce base).
2909 Paseo Dr Ste A
So Saturday night was Girls’ Night Out/In. Paseo Grill was our local fare of choice. Located in the Paseo Arts District, it was perfect for a dozen crazy women looking for fab food and a night out on the town.
I left the memory card to my camera at home, so sadly, no pictures on this review. But, I would be sadly remiss in not describing the atmosphere that Paseo Grill brings to you.
When you walk in the door, it is kind of a strange set-up. You enter the door, face a wall square-on and walk down a narrow entry and around a corner to find the Hostess. This hallway opens up to a bevy of tables built into the wall, and each table is covered with a gauzy curtain. Each party seems to have its own private room that way. Very hip for a romantic night out with your hunny or a private party with a group of friends. There are also randomly placed reading glasses on the table due to the dark atmosphere which are helpful.
The Appetizer menu is an ecclectic blend of choices, with everything from Hummus ($7), to Tuna Tartar ($12) to a wonderful Cherry Wood Smoked Salmon with Hearts of Palm and Artichoke Medley ($11). Something for everyone. And in Oklahoma, you need something for everyone. We is an ecclectic bunch, we Okies.
Our waiter, bless his heart for having to part through many a gauzy curtain to take our order, was very knowledgeable about the menu and specials for the day. For dinner, I choice the Fresco Chicken Farfalle ($17). This consisted of farfalle (bowtie) pasta tossed with sautéed chicken, hearts of palm, proscuitto, mushrooms, artichokes hearts, and parmesan cheese tossed in a champagne cream sauce. The dish was heavenly and skimped on none of the above ingredients. I was a happy camper.
My friend Julia ordered the Crab and Avocado Salad ($13) which was jumbo lump crab meat and avocado served with a parmesan crisp and mixed greens drizzled in lemon vinaigrette. It was garnished with fried capers, basil, red bell peppers and red onions. I tasted it, and thought it was okay, but not fabulous for all that was in it.
Several of the girls ordered the Chicken Saltimbocca ($21). Some had been to Paseo before and raved about it. It didn’t disappoint and they were very pleased.
Interestingly enough, one of my co-workers was there that evening trying out the food for her daughter’s wedding. Paseo Grill caters, and even though they didn’t have Mexican on the menu, they served them samplings of a variety of Mexican-themed fare that she thought was very good. This is something to take note of for future thought!
Two of the ladies ordered the daily special which was a filet mignon and were very pleased with the way it was cooked. In fact, I don’t think I heard a complaint from our party at all.
I have a a friend who highly recommends both the duck and the pot pie at Paseo. Pot pie is made daily and when it runs out, you’re out of luck though so plan accordingly!
Complimentary dessert was served in tiny parfait glasses with fresh berries and real whipped cream.
Due to the cold, we couldn’t take advantage of the cute patio offered outside, but really, the curtained tables are so cool, I’m not sure if I would have anyway!
Our experience overall was great. I would definitely go back to Paseo Grill. I think I’ll drag Mr. Wonderful along next time for something special. I’d like to get him alone at our own table behind a curtain!
Been to Paseo? What were your thoughts? Please leave a comment below!
Last night was a big day for Oklahoma men everywhere. It was the first Sooner’s home football game. Testosterone was busting out all over town. I went to Wal-Mart to get some groceries, and the shoppers were swimming in a sea of Crimson and Cream clothing. Men were pushing shopping carts full of chips, beer […]
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She Wears Many Hats
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