Monthly Archives: March 2010

A girl and her shoes: The Carrie Bradshaw story……Maybe?

My shoe fetish is not as strong as Carrie Bradshaw’s but I do love a good pair of shoes. Being a dwarf whose shoe size is an adults 4 ½ and in children’s a size 3 makes it impossible to find the most fashionable styles. I do from time to time, hit it lucky and find a great pair of shoes.

There are a few times when being a dwarf pays off and buying kid shoes is one of those times. These days, kids shoe styles are more like adult. I can usually find the same style in kids as in adults. One of my new obsessions are Uggs. I can’t get enough of these wonderful shoes. My feet are always freezing in the winter and these are perfect for toasty feet. I paid half the price for these beauties because I bought the kid version not the adult. The adult version costs 120.00, the kid version were 60.00. Who cannot love a pair of Uggs for half price!

The next favorite brand that fit me is Dansko. Dansko are pricey but the quality is excellent. Dansko sizes follow the European size charts. Europeans must have small feet because a size 34 fits me like a glove. I had these clogs for over ten years. The clogs still look good. There is not much wear and tear.

My new additions are the Dansko sandals. As soon as I tried these on, I had to have them. I gave hubby my ‘sad sack’ face (which always works) and he said ‘okay get the sandals’! I was ready to marry him all over again for a pair of shoes.

The only thing I would love in my closet is a pair of stylish boots. Dwarfs cannot find stylish boots that fit. Children’s size boots don’t fit my calf and the adult boots are too big. If I could get the boots on, it would make me look like I am ready to feed hogs! They would come up to my hip if I can get the boot on at all! Not a pretty site. It is not a fashion statement I would like to make. I will leave the boots to Carrie.

Oh by the way, did any of you see the ‘Little Chocolatiers’ on TLC last night? I was not going to tune-in, but after watching ‘Lost’ I really needed to watch something happy! The show is about a dwarf couple that owns a chocolate shop in Salt Lake City, Utah. I don’t understand TLC’s obsession with dwarfs. I mean they run a business like everyone else does in America. So what they are short! I would love to try their candy but to me the show is not all that exciting.

The show seemed ‘staged’. You can tell by the reaction of the cast to certain situations that occurred. The wife (Katie Masterson) dropped a leg of a chocolate desk just as they were leaving for a delivery. Her reaction was rehearsed. After she dropped the leg, her line was ‘oh no, I dropped the leg, I have to hurry and make another one’. The line was delivered with little emotion. I am sure if you were getting ready for a delivery and dropped your order, there would be a few more words added other than ‘oh no’.

Another staged scene was a customer enters the shop and says ‘it’s cool that midgets make chocolate’. The customer must have some sick Willy Wonka fantasies! You can tell the scene was staged by the customer’s delivery of the line. The ‘actor’, I mean, ‘customer’ was laughing into the camera while saying the line. He was being coached by the director and there had to have been many takes done on the scene. The employees of the store didn’t flinch when the customer said the ignorant statement, which would have occurred in real life. The dwarf couple didn’t get all that upset. The couple did correct the customer that midget is not a correct term used to identify little people and that it is offensive to dwarves.The customer/actor then apologized (without any emotion), bought his candy and went on his way (exit stage left).

TLC is starting to go a little overboard with these shows. Again I love the ‘Littlest Couple’ because it is interesting beyond the dwarfism theme. Jen has a job not many of us ever heard about. C’mon we all watch Grey’s Anatomy, we love doctors to begin with. Now make the doctor a dwarf, it’s a slam-dunk! A couple that owns a store or has a baby, is not very interesting. TLC is starting to border on voyeurism. It is the sideshow channel being delivered into your home every night. It is sort of creepy.

I am starving and need some lunch. In future posts this week, I will show more scrapbook projects and maybe share the story of how my better half and I met. It’s a doozy! Bye for now!

School Pages

Another fun filled week has passed. Ashley has been keeping me busy. This time of year is always busy with kids. There are plenty of school activities, church going-ons and sports that keeps a family moving. I did manage to get a little scrapbooking in this week.

I am a chronological scrapbooker. I scrapbook annual events such as birthdays, holidays and unique activities. I also keep a separate heritage album for old family photos and an album about me(things I like, think about, wish for).

I do not keep a separate scrapbook for school years. I think it is just too much to deal with. What I do is during the school year, I hold on to special papers, artwork and accomplishments that I want to save. I also keep a class picture that corresponds with the grade.

I then make a scrapbook page that describes the particular school year. For second grade, I used Ashley’s school picture. The unique project for second grade was making a dinosaur habitat. It was her first science project, so I took a picture of it. This was my focal point of the grade page.

The 2nd page of the layout is the pocket page that holds all the memorabilia from the year. The memorabilia ranged from art work, certificates earned and papers she did well on. Now of course you can’t keep every paper from a school year! You would go nuts if you did. Pick out the papers that stick out, that make you proud of your child. The papers you want to remember later in life when your dear sweet child decides to join a rock band and move to Berlin! Only kidding! Here is the pocket page I made. The school bus diecut is from Cricut’s ‘Stretch your Imagination’ cartridge. I continued with the same lime green cardstock and patterned paper from the first layout.

I believe this is the best way to preserve school memories. It’s easy and quick. You’ll be glad you did!

One last thought. Keep me in your thoughts tomorrow. I have to get blood work done which I hate! They can never find my veins so they have to draw it from my hand. My hand usually swells afterwards and hurts! I hate it! I am actually getting sick to my stomach tonight thinking about it. Wish me luck. Talk to you tomorrow.

The revolution is on…..

Many revolutions right now are happening in our country. The first and foremost is the passage of healthcare reform. This is reform that is near and dear to my heart. As you know my husband lost his job and started a business. We both are dwarves thus we both have ‘pre-existing’ conditions. Needless to say, It has been a pain in the ass to find good health insurance. In fact it is almost impossible. We have been denied by almost every insurance company we have applied for.

Our saving grace is in North Carolina , Blue Cross and Blue Shield allows small business’s to purchase insurance. Even one employee businesses like ours. Many insurance companies do not allow buy-ins for single owner/employee businesses. We were lucky to find this plan. Now paying for it is a whole other story. We are coming in at the top tier for the plan. Our monthly premium will be over 1000.00 a month. I am not joking! Now you can understand why I support this piece of legislation.

My conservative friends think this bill is like welfare. It will make people become lazy and be supported for their needs by the government. That the government already has medicare/medicaid. Why do we need more? It will lead to more fraud and government pay-outs. People should work hard for what they want and do not expect anything from your government.

I love my conservative friends but they just don’t understand. None have pre-existing conditions, all have company sponsored healthcare (for now) and none of them have a child that has been denied healthcare. They just don’t get it because they have never experienced the other side of the coin. My friends never worry at night if they will be able to give their child the hormone injection he/she needs in order to lead a normal life. That is one worry no mother should have. Thanks to President Obama, no mother ever will.

Before I loose those friends, lets talk about another revolution. Did anyone watch Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution? It is an amazing show and if you are a mom, I highly recommend it! Jamie Oliver goes into a town in West Virginia and takes over one school’s cafeteria. The school serves pizza for breakfast and chicken nuggets for lunch. This horrifies Mr. Oliver like it should! Now you would think the school would be behind his revolution. Heck no! The cafeteria lady treats him like the bastard at a family reunion. They don’t see what is wrong with what they serve in the school! Jamie has to convince the school to change it’s ways. For the school to serve more healthy options at lunch. We have to stay tuned to see if he succeeds!

If you want to join the school lunch revolution, please check out Slow Food’s ‘Time for Lunch’ campaign. Slow food’s ‘Time for Lunch’ campaign is is a project of Slow Food USA, an educational non-profit with the goal of creating a world in which everyone can enjoy food that is good, clean and fair.

This year, Slow Food is asking parents, teachers and every responsible citizen to speak up and tell Congress that change can’t wait: It’s time to provide our children with REAL FOOD at school.

Through the website you can tell your legislators that you want fresh local food served in your schools. Let your voices be heard! No more pizza or chicken nuggets!

Come and Join the Revolution! I did!

What happens when you’re four feet tall with big boobs……

This was the finale to an incredible busy nasty week! I haven’t made a decent meal for my family since Tuesday. My daughter had a very busy schedule this week with choir and karate. So Sunday was going to be our big meal day. Sunday is always a big meal day for our family. It comes from my italian heritage. We always had the whole family over for dinner on Sunday when I was growing-up. Even though it’s just the three of us, I still treat Sunday as the big meal of the week.

I decided to make my easy turkey sausage with penne. I just finished chopping the meat and vegetables. As I was jumping off the stool, somehow my boob caught the end of the bowl. The bowl flipped up in the air. Sausage, peppers and onions spilled everywhere! I mean in the garbage, on the floor and even in the sink.I was on the verge of crying. Seriously I was.

My husband came to the rescue. He offered to go to the store and pick up another package of turkey italian sausage. I chopped more veggies this time at a lower level and proceeded to wait for his return.

Needless to say, I was able to finish cooking. We had a pleasant dinner. I am glad this week is over! Hopefully next week will be better.

If you want the recipe for my Turkey Italian Sausage with Pasta here it is. It is a real simple dish that can be made any night. It serves about four people.

Turkey Italian Sausage with Pasta

1 lb (package) Turkey Italian sausage that has been frozen. **The sausage is easier to slice frozen then thawed. This is the gift of this meal. You can make it any night of the week. No need for defrosting.

1 14.0z can of diced tomatoes

1 jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce

1 medium onion chopped

1 green pepper chopped

1-2 gloves of minced garlic

1 lb box of your favorite pasta. You can use penne, rotini or farfalle.

1.Slice turkey sausage into bite size pieces,set aside. Next Chop onion, green pepper, set aside. Mince garlic, set aside.

3. Add water to a large stock pot for cooking pasta. Wait for water to boil add pasta. Cooking times vary by type of pasta you are using. Best to check box for correct cooking time.

2. Using a 10 inch skillet with a lid, heat skillet on medium high heat. Add one tablespoon of olive oil. Next add sausage to skillet. Brown sausage.This should take about 6 to 8 minutes. Next add the onion, green pepper and garlic. add salt and pepper to taste. You can also add about 1/2 teaspoon of dried Italian seasoning. Stir until vegetables are translucent. This should take another 5 minutes.

3. Next stir in can of diced tomatoes. Stir for about 3 minutes. Next add jar of spaghetti sauce. Stir to coat all ingredients throughly. Cover skillet. Lower temperature to simmer(medium to low). Let simmer for about 14 minutes. This gives it the time for all the flavors to come together.

When sauce is done, serve over cooked pasta and enjoy!

I am looking forward to watching ‘The Pacific’ tonight on HBO. If you are a history buff or had family that grew up during WWII, you must watch this mini series.It is really good! Take care and have a great week!

Under the weather

This has been a bad health week for me. It started on Monday when I went grocery shopping. I shopped at a different store than usual. I am assuming that the store was built on a concrete slab because my back and hips were killing me by the end of the excursion. I mean my spine was throbbing from my tailbone to my neck! It freaked me out a little. The pain lasted until the next day.

On Tuesday I made beef fajitas. The fajitas were awesome and my family loved it. I am not a real big red meat eater. Maybe once every three months I eat red meat. Now mind you I am not one of those tofu lovin granola types. I just am not into the taste and my family has a history of high cholesterol. Around 4 in the morning, I had the most wicked stomach cramps! I thought I was going to die that’s how bad they were. This always happens when I don’t eat red meat for long periods of time. Before the Fajitas, I think the last time I had red meat was back in November. Wednesday was a wash between the arthritis and stomach cramps.

Today, I woke up with my head swirling. I almost couldn’t stand up. I haven’t had vertigo this bad since I lived in Virginia. My head feels so full, like the ocean is crashing against my brain. Today I cannot be sick. I have a conference/luncheon to go to with my husband and I have to take Ashley to karate. Not a good day to be sick! I took some sinus medicine which is starting to work. I hate it when I am sick. Everything falls behind.

I did manage to apply for some good jobs that I hope I get an interview. I also pulled out my Cricut machine. I love the Cricut for scrapbooking. I usually do a few projects at one time since I don’t have dedicated place for my machine. My favorite cartridge is Pagoda. The cartridge is a new release. You can use it for spring pages, girly pages and summer. I love when you can get more out of your cartridges since they are so damn expensive!

Here is what I made. I am going to use the diecuts for end of school page, school year in review and our trip to Washigton DC.
I will post later this week the pages I make.

I have to go get ready for this conference. Take care and I hope you are having a better week than me!

Wouldn’t you like to be a neighbor

The weather has been wonderful here in Carolina. It was seventy and gorgeous out. I forced my husband to leave his work for a while and go exploring with me. I was in search of a house that someday in the far distant future we would be able to buy. I could not find the house I wanted to look at. Instead I found Bill Gate’s house.

Unbelievable isn’t it! It is 6,536 square feet of pure dreamy luxury. It has 4 bedrooms,4.5 baths, a home theater in the basement and a kitchen that Emeril would feel right at home in. Guess what the asking price is? Are you ready for the sticker shock? 1.785 million !! That’s Oprah money not DJD money! This house is totally out of our range like forever meaning never! It is nice to dream though! My mother-in-law doesn’t understand my obsession with McMansions. She asks ‘why do you want house so big?’. I always reply ‘I am four feet tall, I need the room to grow!’. She doesn’t think it is funny when I say that, she just rolls her eyes!

Okay back to reality. I promised Charlottes fish recipe. It came out really good last night. My husband and I finished the dish by ourselves. My daughter does not eat fish. She had chicken nuggets. I cannot even get her to smell a fish let alone taste it. I hope with age she changes her mind.

Charlotte’s Fish

1 Pound of white fish(Tilapia, Grouper, etc.)
1/3 Cup of Onion chopped
1 Clove of Garlic minced
2 Teaspoons of olive oil
1 Can of Italian diced tomatoes
1-1/2 Teaspoons of fresh Basil or 1/2 Teaspoon of dried Basil
4 Ounces of crumbled Feta cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. lightly salt fish(1 teaspoon of salt). Saute fish in olive oil for 7 minutes then transfer to casserole dish. Add tomatoes,garlic, onion to the casserole dish. Top with the crumbled feta cheese. Bake fish for 7 minutes until cheese is warm and bubbly. Serve hot.

Okay that is the basic recipe. Here is what I do. I do not saute the fish. I put the two teaspoons of olive oil to the casserole dish and then layer the fish in the casserole dish and sprinkle with salt. I drain the tomatoes to make sure all the juice is out because I add 1/3 of a cup of white wine on top of the fish.Next I add the tomatoes, basil, onions and garlic. I don’t like the taste of Feta, so I top with 1/2 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese. I bake it for 25 minutes at 400 degrees. Either way you try this dish, it comes out really tasty.

I hope you are having a great weekend!

Where did the week go?

This week flew by me. I only accomplished half of what I needed to do! At least I finished my daughter’s Easter shopping. She scored much loot. Target is having a great sale on Easter candy and I had a 40% off coupon for Justice. For those who don’t have a tween in the house, Justice is a store for tween girls. It has everything from clothing to toys. It is the kid’s version of Ann Taylor minus the candy and toys. Not all that Candy is for her. Ashley’s teeth would rot for sure! Every Lent my husband gives up chocolate, so for Easter I make him a small basket of his favorites. I think I did well with the budget I had.

I never was a coupon cutter/deal finder until this past year. This economy changed my shopping habits and I must say for the good. You see my husband was laid-off three years ago from his great job at an affiliate television station. He worked fifteen years for a major network until he was laid-off. It seems one out of every two people who worked in television has been laid-off. Advertising revenue is not what it used to be thus stations/networks had to cut back.

There is a reason for me telling you this story so sit tight. Since every job he applied for had at least 500 applicants(no I am not joking). He decided to venture out on his own. He has wanted to own his own company for years. The job market made him jump off the cliff and do it. His company Davision Media is a full service media/marketing firm. He specializes in media buying, web design, producing/editing and web optimization.

After we moved to Raleigh, we joined the Raleigh Chamber of Commerce. We wanted to promote the business locally and to get our name out there as soon as possible. This week, the Chamber held a Women’s Working Luncheon that I attended for Davision Media. The luncheon was held at NC State. It was wonderful to leave my ‘mom’ outfit behind and get dressed up again. This luncheon was a major networking session as well as a teaching session to show us how to balance motherhood with a career. I loved it. It was wonderful to be surrounded by professional women who all have a passion for being a mom as well as for having a career. I have to admit I was a little scared at first. I haven’t been out into the business world since I adopted my daughter and I am shorter than all the attendees. Sometimes people can be a little stand-offish under these circumstance not so this time. The women were so warm and welcoming and I soon felt at ease. I felt so at ease, I surprised myself by talking about the business and handing out business cards.I am definitely going to next month’s women’s seminar.


It’s Lent, it’s Friday, time for fish dinner. I am going to make Charlotte’s fish and egg noodles. Charlotte is my sister-in-law and she has a fantastic white fish recipe. I promise tomorrow I will post the recipe with pictures. Gotta go and cook!

Take care and I hope your week rocked!

Acrylic Album

I finally finished the mini album! This was my first venture with acrylic and to be honest, not a big fan. The paint sort of chips and the rub-ons can be pulled off. The album is a combination of an acrylic album that I got from AC Moore and the Cosmo Cricket’s Blackboard Mini Album. I combined the two because I had many pictures I wanted to use. I used many scraps from all different manufacturers for the album. I dug into my ‘stash’ (if you are seasoned scrapbooker, you know what I mean) for the embellishments. I tied AC ribbon to the rings to give it pizazz. I am not too pleased with the outcome of this project.

I totally screwed up this page. I like the page on the left with the boat. On the right side, you can see the paper backing from the next page. You have to match up all you papers when using acrylic. I was not paying attention.

The Charleston pages came out okay. I love the vintage look of the tags. The tags are from 7 Gypsies. The rub-ons were coming off, so I stuck the picture on top which helped.

All in all, not too thrilled with the outcome of this album. If anyone has acrylic tips, please share in the comments section.

Thanks!

Spring

The birds are chirping, flowers are blooming and squirrels are doing the ‘nasty’ in my backyard. It is springtime in the South. I wish the squirrels would get a room! My daughter keeps asking why are the squirrels fighting so much.

My daughter tracked back into school today. Yes, I am doing the happy dance. I love her to death but having a child home for three weeks when the weather is crappy is not fun. I was scheduled to read to her class this afternoon but it was cancelled. A mom from my daughter’s class asked me if I could take her spot since she had other obligations. Her teacher just called me and told me that she has much work to get done and I do not have to come-in. Between me and you, I am sort of happy for the cancellation. I have avoided volunteering at new the school for several reasons. Mainly because my daughter is getting older and I don’t want her to feel more like odd ball out because her mom is a dwarf.

I know ..I know..it is bad that I feel this way. I just want her to blend in for a while. To give her a break from explaining why her parents look different and why she doesn’t look at all like us. I know she will have to answer these questions soon. The move has been hard on her and she misses her old friends. I just wanted to make the transition easy at least for now. Some classmates know already from coming over to our house but the majority don’t.

This is my problem not hers. A couple of weeks ago, I asked her if kids tease her that her parents are dwarfs. She stared out the window for a minute and said I don’t bite the hook. I asked ‘What do you mean’. Ashley then told me that the teacher taught the class that if someone is teasing or saying something mean, just walk away ‘Don’t bite the hook’! At that moment I was proud of my daughter and sort of sad that she has to deal with this. I then asked if she minds that we are different. She replied ‘I love you mom’. That was enough for me.

When we were going through the adoption process for Ashley the director of the agency approached this subject. She told us to visualize an onion. First you peel off that the child is from another country, then you peel off that she is of another race, then in Ashley’s case, you peel off that Ashley has Turner’s syndrome and finally you peel off that she has dwarfs for parents. Then she asked how is your child going to deal with all those layers. My husband responded, she will take her lead from us. She will see that you have to get on with your life no matter what has been handed to you. That you need to put your pants on one leg at a time every day . You have to do the best you can with what you got and to never stop trying. The director then started to cry and said that was the best response she ever heard.

So I need to get over this and deal. Again this is my problem not hers. I need to take my daughter’s lead. I think I am going to email the teacher and ask her if I can read to the class soon. I know my daughter will love it.

Have a great week.

Creative Chaos….

My desk is a mess. My laundry room is a mess with piles of laundry that needs to be folded. I need to finish a questionnaire for a fellow blogger. I can’t seem to get caught up this week. Can you tell my daughter is still home from winter break?

I have been trying to get an acrylic mini album done. It’s an album about the places we go. As I have said before I love small albums. The focal point for the album is easy which makes the coming together part simple. I just don’t have the time this week to finish it nor to start on other projects.

Again I am being pulled away from the things I need to get done. My daughter begged me to take her to see ‘Alice in Wonderland’. She is bored out of her mind AGAIN. So off to the movies I go. I love her to death but boy I can’t wait for Monday when she goes back to school!


Gotta go. Hopefully my wash will be folded when I come home.
I know wishful thinking…..