Friday, March 27, 2009

The Writers Club...

So I found this "writer's club""...not that I'm a writer or anything. In fact there are no talent prerequisites, that's why I can join.

I thought this was a fun, easy idea. Write your day out using only nouns. A little more difficult than I imagined; I do love my adjectives.


Makes you think my life is perfect over here, huh? {minus the mosquitoes}

O.K. so I can't stand it. How can you really tell a story without descriptive words?
Here's my new list.

sleepy eyes
crisp sunlight
slight snuggles
quiet laugh
steamy breakfast
starting school
tough school
interesting school
done school
yeah school
quick sandwiches
drenched mop
grimy windows
constant fights
distractive toys
rickety playground
abounding in snuggles
contagious laugh
bouncy balls
rusted swings
cheery sunlight
running tag
comfy home
needed bathrooms
shiny floors
friendly computer
delicious dinner
tons of snuggles
content laughs
bubbly baths
wet laughs
squeaky teeth
toasty pajamas
sleepy snuggle
chilly bed
buzzing mosquitoes
dead mosquitoes

Tah-dah! Day done!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Stranger Friends...

I've been thinking a lot about this lately. {Actually, since yesterday as I was headed to meet a so called "stranger friend"}

What is a stranger friend you might ask? {Humor me on this one}

A stranger friend is someone whose blog I visit, often. It's a friend, as in someone I know a lot about, but a stranger, as in we've never met.

A few years ago, this "term" would have seemed silly. I mean, how can you know so much about someone and they know nothing about you? Can they even be considered a friend if your relationship is one sided?


Also, why do we {those of us who have open blogs} feel so comfortable to put so much of ourselves out there...for free?

Yesterday my husband and I were invited to "hang out" at the home of a woman who I have been "stranger friends" for just over a year. I found her blog when this crazy idea to move here first entered my little head.

Her name is Saratica.

Before we left to meet her, I got a little nervous. What if she doesn't match up to the friend/person I think she is? How weird is it going to be for me to meet her, knowing her beliefs in politics, religion and such...and me just a stranger to her? How will this work out?

"Oh Shawna...not to worry."

Everything was wonderful. She invited my husband and I in with such graciousness. Her 2 boys were handsome and so polite. Her husband was as funny and gracious {opps, that's not very manly} entertaining as she was. He whipped up a chocolate pizza for all to share and we talked and laughed around their kitchen table, just like old friends. {Yeah girls, I said a chocolate pizza, boy does he have a way with woman!}

Now I realize... anyone who has moved to this exotic land already has so much in common. We've gone through culture shock {which is REAL by the way}, struggled with a new language, learned a new currency and tried to understand customs that seemed so strange to us.

It only took us a few minutes to put a face with the commonalities...and we are no longer strangers.

This is the reason I have a blog. The more friends the better...if I can help someone with their stressful day with kids, finding a new recipe for the family, share a new perspective on a situation or just make someone laugh...I'm all for it!

Also, as I'm climbing my way out of a CRAZY day with 5 active {insane} kids, things seem less strenuous knowing that later in the week some "stranger friend" of mine might get a chuckle out of it.

Good day/night my stranger friends.

And don't be afraid to leave a comment now and then. :)

I'm glad you're here.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Strawberry Cream Pie...

I know I've raved about every recipe so far but watch out...this will knock your socks off. That is if you like fruit tarts. It's kind of my version of the tarts we had for my girlfriend's bridal shower {"Hi Nikkinunu!"} oh, maybe 15 years ago {March 18th}. Happy anniversary by the way. :)

Oh, so yummy!

I've put together a few recipes to make this.

First, use my {I mean Ruth's Grandma's} homemade pie recipe. Really easy I promise!!! Go on, you can do it!
***Cut the recipe in 1/2, you only need a bottom crust here.

Ruth's Grandma's Pie Crust

4 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups shortening
3 tablespoons white sugar

2 teaspoons salt
1 egg
1/2 cup water

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine all-purpose flour, shortening, sugar, and salt. Blend together with a pastry cutter until crumbly.
2. In a small bowl, mix egg with water. Blend into flour mixture. Chill in refrigerator until ready to use.
Now you need to bake the crust:
Roll out the crust to fit in your pie pan. Cut the edges off. Put aluminum foil on top and fill with dry beans or rice. {this will keep the crust from bubbling up} Bake @ 325 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until toasted and baked.

Now for the insides...oh this is yummy! I'm not a fan of vanilla ANYTHING! I can't believe anyone can stand at an ice cream store and order vanilla ice cream.

Really, someone does that?

But I needed a filling for my "tart pie" and found this delicious concoction.

*** this recipe you need to double.
Old-Fashioned Vanilla Pudding

2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup evaporated milk

1 egg yolk, lightly beaten
1 1/2 teaspoons butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch and salt. Gradually stir in milk. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from the heat.
2. Stir a small amount of hot filling into egg yolk; return all to the pan, stirring constantly. Bring to a gentle boil; cook and stir 1 minute longer. Remove from the heat. Gently stir in butter and vanilla.
3. Cool for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Transfer to dessert dishes. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
After this has cooled {I don't wait an hour} pour into your baked pie crust. {Of course you have removed the foil and beans/rice} I use beans because they can be used for meals still. The rice can not be used again. Sorry.

Now you can cover the top with your favorite sliced fresh fruit. But this is what I do...

I take half my strawberries and make a pie filling with them. (Those of you in the states can just buy the can if you'd like) Then I spread that on top of most of the pudding filling. I then take the other half of the fresh sliced strawberries and toss them on top of that. {My mouth is watering} Then for color I add about 5-10 slices of kiwi.

Not only does this pie/tart {whatever you want to call it} look gorgeous, it's like creamy summer for your tongue.

Who doesn't like that?

Last week my son accidentally dropped the last piece of pie out of the refrigerator onto the floor. The entire house went silent! My husband was mortified!!!

Let's just say that I hadn't mopped in a few days, but every last drop was cleaned up and went into waiting tummies.

Yeah, this is eat off the floor, don't let anything go to waste, GOOD!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

"Life is Like a Box of Chocolates...

you never know what you are gonna get. "
-Forest Gump.

Or you can be like me and take the tiniest bite out of every one, then put them back...that way you always know. Oh, that used to drive my brother Robbie CRAZY! So then I started carving out a circle out of the bottom. It produced the same result and he never knew.

A few weeks ago I presented a youtube clip entitled "CREATE". It just moved me. I decided then and there it was time. I was going to dust off my fancy camera and use it every Sunday. Scratch that creative itch so to speak. I mean, geeesh...I'm living in beautiful Costa Rica!

Oh I was so thrilled.

Then as I was planning my adventure, my battery charger died on me. So funny. This is when I look up to heaven and {in my minds eye} picture everyone watching how I handle this one. {I got this perspective from the "Life is a Football Game" talk I mentioned earlier. It works wonders when your kids really mess up. You know, painting your girlfriend's brand new carpet with multiple colors of popsicle syrup.

Wow, was that pretty. My daughter did that.

And get this; the friend is still my friend. "Hi Teresa!"

So, although this wasn't as drastic, I was disappointed. I can't easily order a new charger or drive somewhere to pick one up.

Then I came up with another idea to scratch that itch. {And make a little cash too} All I'm going to tell you is it involves my Photoshop talents, my computer and the Internet. After 2 weeks of {blood, sweat and tears} getting the {web} shop Internet goes down. It's been down for over a week.

I look up to heaven again, " this happening?" and let out a frustrated giggle.

So as of 3 hours Internet is back.

I whisper a "thank you" to whomever fixed it and write this post to explain to my dad why I've had so many posts about recipes lately. {I don't need a camera for those posts.}

I do have a picture to show you how last week went.

So enjoy your week! And I should be up and running at normal speeds again.

Does anyone here in CR have the Canon battery charger CB-5L and would be willing to charge my battery? Anyone?

My sweetheart just taught our oldest how to shave {I can't believe this is happening so soon!} and I couldn't photograph the event.