Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Election Night Gumbo

OK, a few random housekeeping and rant-y items:

1. Regarding my search for meatless "meat" products - thank you all for your suggestions. I believe I am on my way to a solution, at least with regard to veggie sausage products. Just tonight I tried the Trader Joe's brand of Italian meatless sausages, and I was quite impressed. The texture was not rubbery, and the flavor was good. They look like complete yuck before cooking (really, really pale), but cooking them in a skillet with some oil gave them a nice color. All in all, I was quite happy with them - it's just unfortunate that I can only by them at Trader Joe's. I have also bought some TJ's meatless Chorizo to try out this week, and will likely check out the other suggestions as well. But my anxiety over this issue is already easing, thankfully. I still have no good solutions for the veggie hot dog problem, though...

2. Let's talk shoes for a moment. Specifically, toddler girl shoes. Oh my lord in heaven, are they freakin' expensive or what?!?! My little girl has been blessed with tiny, thick feet (with her 85% growth rate, this makes her look a bit like a Geisha girl - minus the blond hair of course - as she totters around on teeny feet). Extra wide shoes are just no where to be found, except online in two places: 1) Stride Rite - and they basically have sneakers only, one pair of which we have already purchased; and 2) Zappos.com - plenty of Mary Jane style shoes, some even available in the small size 4/5 Lucy sports, but they range in price from $36 (only those on sale) up to nearly $60. Gasp! I feel guilty spending that much on myself for shoes, and I usually wear shoes for at least 2 years (and some have been hanging on for way longer than that, grossly). Lucy's shoes last tops 4 months. Do you all really buy such expensive shoes for your kids? If not, what do you do instead? Anyone with experience buying extra wide toddler sizes? I plead for help before the holiday season is upon us!

3. My dieting was severely derailed this past weekend, and hasn't fully recovered yet. Which is so, so unfortunate, because after about 2 weeks of dieting I was down about 4 pounds. Now I'm pretty much back at my starting point (can we say YO-YO?). It began with a fundraiser buffet lunch at work - homemade macaroni and cheese, baked beans, desserts, nary a salad in sight... and no way to track calories without some serious effort on my part. I felt compelled to participate because a) it was for a good cause (to raise money to buy holiday gifts for military families in need); and b) M. refused to make my lunch the night before. The binging continued with birthday cake, take-out Thai food, Dunkin' Donuts, appetizers, wine, etc, etc - all in the name of entertaining our guests, but all of which I happily partook of. I'm having trouble getting back on track - the last two days I've started out counting my calories, but by noon I've slipped up and, out of guilt, ceased with the counting. I think part of my lack of will power for this is tied to a lack of exercise - I've only managed to jog about 4 times since my race, though one of those times was a 4 mile jog tonight, so hopefully that will help. I also need to start heading back to the gym during the work day a couple days a week to build up some muscle that will help me burn fat. Sigh.

4. This could fall under "Things That Annoy Me," but I forgot to include it in my list last week. And that is, apparently the Diaper Champ has been redesigned, and in my estimation, it makes for a much poorer diaper pail. Perhaps not the most interesting topic, but I feel that I must go public with this information. Now, we have used the Diaper Champ since Finn was brought home from the hospital, and we have always been very happy with it. First, you can use regular tall trash bags with it, no need to purchase some other wonky bag system. Second, it did a pretty good job keeping in the stink. Keep in mind that no diaper pail is perfect in this regard because toddler poop, it is some nasty smelly stuff. We have always viewed diaper pails as somewhat of a consumable, though - after a little while, an air freshener tucked in the bottom of the pail is necessary to keep the room stink-free. And eventually, it needs to be replaced, as no air freshener in the world is strong enought to contain the smell. I'd say after 4 years of diapers, we had 3 Diaper Champs. And we just bought our 4th two weeks ago. This time, though, it's... changed. First, it's smaller. And the top is different - and the way it has been redesigned basically means you can't throw a dirty diaper in it with one hand - you need two hands, one to open the lid and the other to throw in the stinky diaper you are holding. And worst of all, we christened the brand new DC with a poopy diaper at around 6 pm. By 11 pm that night (Lucy was night-waking at the time), I was ready to gag the moment I walked in her room. One day old, and already stinking! An air freshener has been deployed, and it's helping for the time being, but I fear that the day when we must abandon the Diaper Champ is coming soon. Perhaps this is incentive to potty train Lucy a little early? She already tells me when she has a poopy diaper, after all... (further proof that she is a genius, IMHO).

OK, enough for now. Must keep M. company as he hurls insults and incredulous snorts at the news coverage of the election night.


  1. Stride Rite Outlet!
    I know I posted that we buy shoes at SR, but we generally buy SR shoes... at the outlets. About half the price and the only place we've reliably found XW sizes.

    What I have done in the past is go to SR, get them fitted, then buy off the Outlet rack.

  2. Can you believe that over two years later we are on the same champs? Maybe because we use two? But we are pretty much using the kitchen trash now - it is changed often. I think Genie does a better job but I agree re: trash bags. Also, can we talk about the awesome scientist shirt of america you sent me from Finn's collection? Rock on!