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Friday, December 4, 2015

Five Things on a Friday

Hey, Friends.  It's Friday!

And all the people said, "Hallelujah and Praise the Lord who delivers us from all the adulting we've been doing this week because we are dog-tired.  Amen."

This week has been nothing short of thrilling.  My washer broke (at least I thought it did) and I decided that before I threw money at some repair guy, I would cowboy up and use my God given brain to figure the darn thing out all on my own.  So I googled some stuff and youtubed some stuff and then spent the better part of my Saturday among screwdrivers, dirty dish towels and drain pipes while all my guys were at the gym.  My people were quite confused when they came home to find a flashlight rigged up and balancing on a drain hose and me with my head in the back of a washing machine.

My husband was all

Well, not exactly because Steve doesn't have a beard.  The ruffled collar?   Yes, of course.  Not the beard though.

You'll be shocked to know that despite my efforts, during my next load the washer still stopped on me mid cycle.  On Monday a repairman came and while he was here the washer was on its best behavior and ran through an entire cycle without incident. He said some stuff about nothing caught in the drain and no specific problems but yea, it's pretty old and something about mold and maybe dog hair even though we don't have a dog and may I present you with this bill, ma'am?  I felt really thrilled to pieces about the whole thing so I sent him on his merry way kind of like this

(a shout out to who posted this gif the very day I threw money at the washer repair guy and made me laugh so hard I spit out my drink)

Anyway, after that we had rain for three days straight. And I have to say if you want to hear some grumbling, whining and general malaise, you should join me in going to the post office, the dry cleaner, the bank, the library and the grocery store a couple or seven times since I am a person whose mood is ridiculously weather reliant.  I know.  It's pathetic and immature.

The good news is that my best friend The Sun finally shone yesterday, but he brought with him his very annoying pal:  Freezing Cold 40,000 mile per hour Wind.  This guy just thought it was hilarious when my car door slammed into my rear end every darn time I got in and out and also enjoyed it immensely when my hair flew into my mouth.  Which at least was effective in muffling some of my language.

A spineless clod of grievances am I.  Let's change directions and find something positive or five somethings from this week.

I think I've mentioned that the glorious Chip and Joanna Gaines are my new TV obsession and I'm not alone apparently.  I got all caught up on the old episodes I had on my DVR just in time for the premiere which was on Tuesday night.  On one of the episodes Joanna was wearing a top from Anthropologie that I once tried on and almost bought.  At that point, I quickly decided that this basically makes Joanna and me the same person.  Which means I have been giving many of the walls in my house the side-eye wondering if there is shiplap under there some where and/or considering busting all of them out with a sledgehammer.   I found this article about the 49 Thoughts You Have Every Time You Watch HGTV's Fixer Upper hilarious and right on the money.

I am hard pressed in this house to find a dinner that all four of my people equally love.  Unless you count tacos because Mexican food is a SLAM DUNK up in here any day of the week.  I found this recipe on facebook and it is so easy, it's insane.  Husband loves it.  Boys 1, 2 and 3 love it. Mom is the champion of the world.
2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast tenders
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 Tablespoon canola oil
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 Tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons ketchup
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger (I didn't use fresh.  That is out of my wheelhouse)
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 cup cashews
Combine flour and pepper in Ziploc bag.  Add chicken and shake to coat.  Heat oil in skillet over medium high heat and brown chicken about 2 minutes on each side.  Place chicken in crock pot.  Combine all remaining ingredients except cashews and rice in a small bowl and pour over chicken.  Cook on low for 3-4 hours.  Add cashews and stir.  Serve over rice.  (I give it to Drew, who has a nut allergy, without the cashews and he still loves it) {I have found that I need to double the sauce.]

 Oh, yes.  It's a thing.  I found out about it because I now officially follow @FNL_DailyQuotes on The Twitter.  And if you don't, you're gonna need to reevaluate your social media habits right now.  I hit The Google and found this article about it.  Jason Street will play the part of Coach Taylor. Y'all.  The happiness this news gives me is UNPARALLELED.  Clear eyes, full hearts. jazz hands.

I was fairly angry at basketball season for messing up my plans to go to Texas this year for Thanksgiving, but then I must have forgotten how much I love to watch my kiddos and their teammates on the court.  I am going to have remember to bring my real camera as the IPhone photos really don't come out too well.  Although that could be less the Iphone's fault and more the woman holding the IPhone who knows very little about the game and yet finds herself involuntarily shouting  politely suggesting, "OH COME ON, REF! NO WAY.  THAT WAS ALL BALL!"  That only happened once.  No one even heard me.  Please.  I am totally calm.

I haven't written much about my volunteer work with Kyle's Kamp lately.  I had taken some time away from it during October and November.  Unfortunately, it is easy for those of us with healthy children to walk through our day to day lives worrying about SATs, school projects, carpools and what in the world to pack for lunch today.  For so very many parents - so many more than I ever knew before I joined this cause - the sole worry of every single day centers around the very survival of their children.  It's daunting and frustrating and terribly hard to bear. 

Yesterday, my friend, Randi and I went to decorate the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders Clinic for the Holiday Shop that Kyle's Kamp hosts all next week for patients.  The kids who come for appointments are able to shop for a gift for each of their family members free of charge.  Volunteer elves will wrap their packages for them. 

Yesterday was tiring.  There were lots of boxes of gifts to load up and deliver, lots of snowflakes to hang, tables to cover and windows to paint with winter scenes.  My back was hurting and I was ready to get home.  Then a little boy - maybe 3 or 4 years old - with sparse hair and a mask covering his face to protect his compromised immune system wandered over to check out our work.  After we told him what we had done that day. he said, "I got my tubie today!" (likely a port for chemo, though I can't be sure.) 

I looked at him with wide eyes and said, "You did? How was that?"  He said, "I beed berry berry brave."

Indeed, he was very brave.  And I wasn't tired anymore.  And of all the fabulous things one might find in a week, that berry brave boy was my favorite.

If you know of any child or family who has been affected by pediatric cancer in the Northern Virginia area, Kyle's Kamp would love to have them join us at our office in Chantilly December 12th or 13th to shop for their family's holiday gifts.  You can read about last year's shop HERE.  Please email me at for more information.

Have a lovely weekend, friends!

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