Saturday Morning Ramblings

First of all, I just want to say I am SO behind on reading your blogs and I will try very hard to get caught up! I promise! There are so many of you who are producing great reads and I feel terrible for falling behind.

Dad and I decided to stay home this lovely Saturday. We normally go out on Saturdays for lunch but we went out twice this week already! The first time was after Dad’s periodontist appointment. I asked him if he was in pain and he said, “Not enough to keep me from eating. I’m hungry!” So we stopped at a little Mexican restaurant on the way home called, El Patron. We had eaten there before but it seems to get worse every time. The salsa was so full of cilantro that I couldn’t taste anything else. The enchiladas weren’t very tasty, and the service wasn’t very friendly or attentive. They have octopus dishes on the menu and I can’t help but wonder, where the hell are they getting octopus in SW Missouri? Is there an aquarium down the road that I’m not aware of? Ok, before you think I’m stupid, I know it has to be frozen!


Is this the elusive octopus of SW Missouri? Photo Image Pixabay

Two days later, we were out getting groceries. Yay, Walmart. I despise that place. Anyway, we got groceries and then drove a few extra miles to have pizza at our favorite pizza restaurant. Our eyes were bigger than our bellies that day! Dad had a shrimp basket and I had cheese ravioli, which was delicious but then we decided to get a pizza to go – our regular 16″ House pizza, adding black olives – and an 8 piece hot wings appetizer TO GO! We had breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the entire next day! I’m about pizza’d out!


Photo Image Pixabay

One of those days we were out and about, we spied 19 hawks while driving to and from. We used to see a lot of hawks, and sometimes eagles, but for some reason, we stopped seeing them. It was like they moved to another state or something! I mean, it wasn’t just for a season. It had been over a year before we started seeing them again. We were shocked and amazed at how many we saw in one day after such a long period of time.


Red-tailed Hawk Photo Image Pixabay

We saw a few different raptors that day: a Broad-winged hawk, a few Red-shouldered hawks, but mostly Red-tailed and Cooper’s hawks. There were a few that we weren’t able to identify, because we were, after all, in a moving vehicle. I miss being able to go outside with my Field Guide to the Birds of Missouri, my binoculars, and camera. I guess I have to be satisfied with our “hawk hunting” when we go somewhere!

I suppose I’ve rambled enough for one day! I’m going to leave you with this: A bear doesn’t wear underwear OR use toilet paper and no one would ever mistake toilet paper for a bouncy castle! Hahaha! Have a wonderful weekend!

The Ex-Files – Pay Day Pizza

We had a ritual back in the day. On payday, we would either go out and eat pizza at our favorite place in town or I would call and order the pizza, then pick it up.

This particular payday, I ordered the pizza and planned to go pick it up 40 minutes later, when they said it would be ready. CP was home, sitting on his ass as per the norm. It was the only night of the work week he didn’t go to bed at 7:30 pm. If I’m being honest, I much preferred the nights he came home from work and went directly to bed.

My daughter was hungry and my son was just a baby, so I’m sure he had been fed already. My daughter (aged 3) always liked to go bye-bye with mommy, as most daughters do. I had no problem taking her with me because she was always a good girl. I thought, however, that my lazy, good-for-nothing partner (now ex, thank goodness) would at the very least offer to watch the baby while I went after the pizza. I wasn’t about to ask him because he always acted like I was inconveniencing him by asking him to do any freakin’ thing. Of course, he didn’t even bat an eye. No offers to pick up the pizza, no offers to watch the baby.

I got the kids ready and headed out the door. When I got to the pizza place, I got the kids out of the car. I carried my son in a carrier and held my daughter’s hand. I believe I used a fanny pack back then because I didn’t have enough hands to be carrying a purse! We went inside, and after a bit of a wait, paid for our pizza and headed out the door.

But before we got out the door, I realized I had a baby in one hand and the pizza in the other. How was I to hold my daughter’s hand? I was, at that very moment monumentally pissed at CP. I stopped just inside the door and asked my daughter to hang onto mommy’s shirt and to not let go for any reason until I told her to. I also explained why I couldn’t hold her hand. Thankfully, she was smart and understood.

We got to the car, and I strapped the kids back into the car. I was fuming mad but hiding it from the kids. Why the hell couldn’t CP have offered to watch the kids, or at least the baby? Well, the answer is simple. He was a thoughtless and inconsiderate SOB!

When we were almost home, I told my daughter how proud I was that she held my shirt like such a big girl, just like mommy asked her to. She said, “Thank you, Mommy,” and she smiled so big and bright it almost made me forget what an asshole her father was.


When we got home, I helped my daughter out of the car, put my son in the carrier, and grabbed the pizza. My daughter was already in the house, holding the door open for me because she knew my hands were full. As I entered the door, CP was just sitting there with a look on his face that I was familiar with. That look indicated to me that he was irritated for some reason.

I thanked my big 3-year-old, thoughtful helper for holding the door. She said, “You hands are fulled up, mommy.” Even a 3-year-old can think! Why couldn’t her father? About that time, CP piped in and said something about how long it took. I don’t recall his exact words but it pissed me off, whatever they were.

I said, “For your information, it was a bit crowded there tonight because of a boy’s baseball team celebrating their win. And to top that off, I was struggling with full hands -baby in one hand, pizza in the other – all while trying to keep your daughter safe because I couldn’t hold her hand in the busy parking lot!”

CP’s face changed to a more angry look and he started to speak – but stopped, thought about what he was about to say – and said, “All you had to do was ask and I would have gone for the pizza or watched the kids.” To that, I replied, “I shouldn’t have to ask you to do things to help me or to watch your own children so don’t even give me that crap!”

CP grabbed a few pieces of pizza and went outside to sulk. When he came in, he went to bed without a word. I felt like I was raising 3 kids, instead of 2! He must have scarfed that pizza down like a starving dog because my daughter and I were still eating, and enjoying every bite! Of course, hers were tiny and mine a bit bigger.


Homemade Pizza!

When my children were small, I decided that I was going to create my own family traditions for the holidays. One of those traditions is homemade pizza on Christmas Eve. It’s very simple really. If I’m pressed for time, I buy the pre-made pizza crusts but homemade from scratch is sooo much better! All you need is a good crust, a good sauce and your favorite toppings and then you’ve got your own homemade pizza! Here’s my recipe:

The crust:

4 cups all purpose flour
2 cups warm water
2 envelopes yeast
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
Mix the yeast and warm water, then add the sugar. Wait for the yeast to begin to get bubbly. Then start adding the flour until all is combined and the dough is slightly sticky. Cover the bowl with saran wrap and let the dough rise in a warm area for about 30 minutes. Turn the dough out onto a floured area and knead with your hands about 5 to 10 times. Roll the dough to desired thickness and put in your pans. I normally bake my pizza crust for about 10 minutes at 350 degrees before putting sauce and other toppings on. This keeps the dough from getting soggy. It doesn’t always get soggy so you don’t have to do it this way.

The sauce is a bit more difficult to put down since I actually just throw it together, so if you have a question just give me a holler!

1 (28 oz.) can stewed tomatoes, crushed
2 (28 oz.) cans of tomato sauce
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped or 2 teaspoons garlic powder (or both, if you love garlic like I do!!)
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes (if you like your sauce on the spicy side!)
1 – 2 teaspoons sugar (if you like your sauce on the sweet side!)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Salt to taste (If your tomato sauce has added salt you may not need to add more.)

Notes: I wouldn’t use both red pepper flakes and sugar. Choose one or the other. You can choose to add finely chopped onion and bell pepper, sliced mushrooms and ground Italian sausage. If you like your sauce chunky, leave chunks of tomato, mushroom, bell pepper and onion in the sauce. If you like it smooth, then run your veggies in the food processor with a little tomato sauce before adding to pot. It’s just all about what YOU like and tweaking this recipe (or any other recipe) to satisfy your own family’s tastes. This sauce doubles as a Spaghetti Sauce so make a batch and then save some for your pizza! 

Let your sauce simmer while you prepare the pizza toppings. (It’s best if it simmers for at least an hour.)


I use a combination of Mozzarella and Monterey Jack chesses, Parmesan and /or Romano cheese, pepperoni, Genoa salami, anchovies, black olives, mushrooms, bell pepper. You can use whatever your heart desires! 
When your pizza is topped and everyone’s hungry, bake it at about 375 degrees for about 15 minutes.
Ta-da! Our Christmas Eve Tradition is alive again! Enjoy!