Monday, October 31, 2005

The Perfect S'more

I learned the following "recipe" from my good friend Brandoliya back in college. It opened a whole new world of S'mores to me, so I thought I would share in case anyone was headed out to that last camping trip before the weather turns too cold.

To make the Perfect S'mores you need:
Marshmallows (large)
Graham Crackers
A roasting stick (plus some kind of knife to widdle your stick the way you like)
A rock, or other hard surface to set next to the campfire
A Campfire

Now, the key to the Perfect S'more is patience - It's all about slow cooking.

Lay the rock next to the fire and place your bottom graham cracker on it with a small piece of chocolate, thus allowing the chocolate to melt a little. It may be necessary to rotate occasionally your chocolate & cracker so the heat is evenly distributed. As you are doing this, pierce your marshmallow with your stick and slowly roast it on the coals of your fire. It is very important that you do not try to roast over the flames-- you need the low heat of the coals. Once your marshmallow is completely browned, your chocolate should be nice and soft. Simply place the marshmallow on the graham and chocolate bottom and top it off with another graham cracker. Give the marshmallow and chocolate a moment to mingle, then enjoy. YUM!

Believe me, it is worth the wait and you will never again say, "I don't really like S'mores that much."

Word Box

When I observed a 7th grade class this past month, I was introduced to a pretty cool way to learn vocabulary. Each day during "free read," if a kid comes across a word that she doesn't know, she can come up to the board and write it in the "word box." Then, after free read, the class examines the word, reading it in context, and working together to figure out the meaning, sometimes with the help of a dictionary. It's pretty cool. Anyway, it got me thinking - we should all try to expand our vocabulary daily. Sure, I have the "word of the day" on my e-mail, but I don't pay any real attention to them because unlike this, it's just not fun.

I invite you all to add to our word box (comment section) if you come across an intersting word. Maybe you like how it sounds, or it keeps popping up in your law readings, or you heard it on NPR or SpongeBobSquarePants. If you know the meaning of a word in the box, feel free to tell us. On Friday we will pick, or more accuratly - I will pick, the best word and that will be our word of the week.

I leave you with my favorite word of all time: "sprawling." Why do I love it so? Because it sounds exactly as it means. It's just cool like that. In case you were wondering, my second favorite word is "cumbersome."

The Great Pepper Debate

The other night, I was at our friendly neighborhood Blackthorn eating pizza with my buds. We ordered a delicious green pepper, tomato, and garlic pizza thus spawning a discussion about bell peppers. We all agreed that red peppers pretty much rule over green peppers in the taste department. What we couldn't agree on was where green peppers end up when they mature. He who prefers to remain nameless (we'll call him Y.) said that green peppers were merely immature red peppers and if given the opportunity, would become the tastey red peppers that we all know and love. Scarlet Panda, Superelectirc, and I thought this was ridiculous because while both are bell peppers, they are completely different. So convinced that he was right, Y. bet me $5.oo and said I could blog about it.

Since that fatefull night, I've done some research. Preliminary findings indicate that Y is correct: Green bell peppers are simply immature red peppers. On the vine, they can ripen to yellow, orange, purple, and ultimately will ripen to red peppers. Red peppers have higher levels of nutrients such as vitiman A, C, and Calcium than their non-red counterparts.

Unless someone
can provide evidence to the contrary, it looks as though I am out 5 bucks and my dignity. Faced with little alternative, I am willing to admit I'm wrong, but I would like to bring Scarlet Panda and Superelectric down with me.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Happy Birthday to the Arch!

Our beautiful Gateway Arch turns 40 today. The arch is the tallest monument in the US at an impressive height of 630 feet. If you haven't had the chance to go to the top, I highly suggest your getting off your duff and doing so. If you are feeling too clausterphobic to ride the small elevator, you might go outside on the grass and lay underneath the swaying Arch - it's a pretty cool sight to behold.

You should also take a peek at the museum inside the bottom of the arch-- it is jam packed of historical insight to the Lewis & Clark Expedition.

Ghost or Creepy Imaginary Friend- you make the call

Halloween for me is more than just one day a year. I love the turning leaves, the pumpkins, and cute black cats and witches. My celebrations started last Saturday when I hung out with my friend Frog and her daughter Tadpole. We went to a Halloween celebration on her mainstreet and Tadpole got to go trick-or-treating in her cute litte princess outfit. The night was suppossed to end with Tadpole going to bed and Frog and I carving pumpkins while watching scary movies. Well, Tadpole had other ideas, and ended up freaking me out more than any stupid movie could hope to do.

I was sitting on one end of the couch, and Tadpole was standing facing the other end when she got this weird look on her face and started to wave. She waved at what? Nothing that I could see. Then she mentioned a "man" (she is 2 1/2 and sometimes hard to understand). I mentioned this to Frog and she told me that Tadpole has been talking about this "man" more and more. Frog will find Tadpole talking to her baby doll saying "it's okay, it's okay." When asked what's wrong with baby doll Tadpole replies, "The man scared her." Frog says conversations like this have been becoming more regular. Frog informed me that usually the "man" is in Tadpole's room, so when she asked me if I wanted to go in her room, I said, "No, Tadpole, I do not want to go in your room." Child freaked me out!

Now, I realize in and of itself this is not much to blog about, or to be freaked out about, but there is more. Oh yes, there is more. First, some backround. Even when Tadpole was very young, she would wake up in the middle of the night with nightmares about a scarey man. Another night, Frog was sitting in her living room and saw the shadow of a man, she thought someone was on her porch, so she entered her bedroom to tell Mr. Frog and the shadow followed her into her room and then vanished! No, it was not Frog's own shadow - I asked. Something seems to be going on.

Let's get back to this past weekend. The next day, Tadpole was eating her lunch and she got this "weird" look on her face. This is what transpired:

Frog: Tadpole- what are you looking at?
Tadpole: The Man
Frog: No, Manda when home yesterday (Tadpole calls me "mana")
Tadpole: Not Mana, The MAN (getting a little upset)
Frog: T-man? (their cat). He's in the other room.
Tadpole: NO! THE MAN (really upset now).
Now, Frog did not want to encourage this or put ideas in Tadpole's head, but she was curious to figure out what Tadpole was talking about.

Frog: Does the man talk to you?
Tadpole: No
Frog: Is he nice?
Tadpole: Yeah
Frog: Does he talk to you?
Tadpole: No
Frog: Where is he now?
Tadpole: Behind you.

Creepy! So, Frog told Tadpole to tell the Man it's okay and he should go to heaven. That is exactly what she did. I have not heard if the Man has made anymore appearences, but I will keep you posted.

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 27, 2005

How the Warm Fuzzy Came to Be

When I was in 1st grade, my teacher Mrs. Dottie W. lead me in to world of encouragment and wonder when she introduced warm fuzzies to me. We used to draw warm fuzzies in class and make cotten ball warm fuzzies to take home. For some reason, my artistic abiltiy never quite progressed past the warm fuzzy stage, and to this day I draw them. Sometimes I draw whole villages of them. Sometimes they have hats, but only if there is a festivity worthy of them.

On the blogwagon

Hello all, since so many of my dear friends and random people that show up at my house to watch movies have started their own blogs, I thought I'd join the fun. Hopefully you will all enjoy what you read here. I can't promise I'll update it everday, but since I'm often bored at work, the chances this will be updated regularly are fairly high.