Monthly Archives: January 2009

The Great Laptop Bag Hunt of ’09

glamour MaliaSo, I got a laptop for Christmas and almost immediately I started looking for laptop bags so that I could cart it around town (because I’m just so cosmopolitan that you’ll often find me perched in trendy coffee shops sipping a latte while I stare intently into my computer screen…or not).

It was a great quest. It needed to be terribly functional, it needed to fit my particular laptop, it needed space for other stuff and it needed to be cute. (That was actually the first priority.)

I found several cute ones and agonized (sadly, yes that’s a true statement) over which one to pick. I finally settled on this one:

lappy-bag

I was so enamored with it on the Internet but now that it’s in my possession….it reminds me of the diaper bag I had when JBelle was a baby. (And honestly, I didn’t very much care for that bag.)

I’m trying to be enamored with it in person. I’ve shown it to people and been all, “isn’t it great?” And really, it is. It’s a well made bag. I fits all the requirements I had except possibly the cute one. It looked so cute in the picture but in my hands?

I feel I should be stuffing diapers, wipes & bottles in there.

::sigh::

On one hand, I feel as though I should keep the bag and get over my whiny self, on the other hand…why keep it if it’s really not what I thought it was going to be?

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I wrote the above part of this post about 5 days ago and upon completing it (but not publishing it), I had made my decision. The laptop bag had to go back. Unfortunately that meant shopping for another one. Since I really wanted to have one for the conference next week, I didn’t want to chance trying to order one online again. That meant I had to go to an actual store. (shudders)

Y’all, I’m not a shopper. I’m severely decision challenged. Choices overwhelm me. Plus, I was on a budget. I wasn’t going to spend more than I paid for the first bag.

Yadda yadda yadda, long story longer…cute laptop bags in the mall aren’t cheap, even on sale. I look at largish handbags…still not seeing anything that fits my criteria. In Macys I find a Fossil purse that it just so cute! But…not big enough for the laptop. I eventually find myself in Dillards wandering through more expensive bags when I spot the same Fossil bags I’d seen at Macys. But these are marked 50% off and on the very top shelf is a bag that is big enough for my laptop! Now, it’s not technically a laptop bag, so I know I’m going to have to find something to add protection and cushion but it’s supah cute and $10 less than what I paid for the first bag. And then…when it rings up at the checkout counter? Another 30% off!! Fossil, FTW!

With the additional savings, I purchased a “laptop sleeve” at Target that will add support and cushioning (plus the color coordinates with the pattern!)

fossil purse posing as a lappy bag

supah cute "laptop" bag

laptop sleeve is aubergine

laptop sleeve is aubergine

And there you have it. The Great Laptop Bag Hunt of ’09 has come to an end. I faced my indecisiveness head-on and prevailed! I think I’m well on my way to year of thriving!

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Disclaimer: I don’t expect any sympathy over this faux-tragedy. Believe me, I know that in the grand scheme of things, this is so low on the list of ills and discomforts that it’s not even laughable it’s really rather pathetic.

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Filed under by Malia, on the other hand, random

Choosy Mom turned Cheap Mom

glamour Malia“Choosy Moms choose Jif!” Or so the commercial always told us and I was a proud choosy Mom! Nothing but the best for me my family.

I never really thought I was a brand snob until I decided to try and be more frugal. It’s amazing how blind we can be to our own faults. I was so sure that I only bought a few “brand name” food products and that “for the most part” I picked up off brand or store brand items. Then I took a good hard look into my cabinets and realized how brand name heavy my purchases really were.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that! But like I said, I’m trying to be more frugal and reality is, brand name costs more.

My most recent grocery list included peanut butter, smooth and chunky, because that’s how we roll around here. I usually buy the large jars of it so that it lasts more than a week (seriously, the GMan practically eats his weight in peanut butter each week). I’d never paid attention to how much those jars of Jif were costing. Two jars come to $13! Thirteen dollars worth of peanut butter? The store brand cost almost $2 less. Two jars come to around $9. So I put the store brand in my cart and you know what? It’s good! I think I can used to this letting go of stuff and making some different choices.

And with the four dollar savings (four dollars!), I can still get my favorite coffee creamer. Because Coffee-mate is  your coffee’s perfect mate!

What? So, I still have a ways to go!

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Filed under by Malia, life as a domestic goddess

Veggie Pockets

PhotobucketAnother Mouthwatering Monday post!

An all-time favorite meal in our home is chicken pot pie. But with JBelle taking the vegetarian route I figured that was no longer an option for us. I got to thinking about it though and it occurred to me that I could do the dish without the chicken. However, there was something about it that seemed a bit unappetizing to me. I thought on it a little more and the idea formed to make individual pot pies with a veggie only filling. Much to my amazement, it was hit and so the Veggie Pocket was born!

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Yummy Veggie Pockets

Veggie Filling

1 bag of frozen mixed veggies
1 (or 2) cans cream of celery soup (depends on how much you’re making & how “creamy” you want your filling to be, small bag/box of veggies – 1 can, regular size bag of veggies, probably 2 cans)
~1/2 T poultry seasoning
Seasoned salt to taste

Biscuit recipe (doubled if you have large amount of filling)

2 cups self rising flour (or all purpose with about 1 T baking powder)
1 stick butter (I’ve only ever used butter, so I can’t recommend using margarine)
1 cup milk
extra flour for dusting and rolling out

Directions

Mix all the veggie filling ingredients together in a bowl and set aside. Cut the butter into the flour using a pastry cutter until the mixture is well incorporated and looks like course crumbs. Add the milk and stir together (dough will be sticky). Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface and roll out with a rolling pin to about 1/4 to a 1/2 inch thick. Use a cookie/biscuit cutter to cut out circles. Once you’ve cut out all your circles, one at time roll out each circle until it’s roughly twice the size it was before. Put a spoonful of veggie filling onto one circle.

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cut out biscuits

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ready to assemble

Then using some water, wet the edges of the biscuit with the filling on it and the edges of another biscuits. Place the second biscuit on top of the veggie mixture biscuit and seal the edges together. Then, if you like, you can crimp the edges with a fork.

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crimped edge

Using a fork, poke the top a couple of times to vent. Place them on a cookie sheet and bake at 425 degrees for about 20 minutes or until crust is a light golden brown.

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golden brown & ready to eat!

It’s tonguegasmic!

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Did you get you some new undies last week? I did! ;)  The Diaper Diaries I Cor 7:3 Week 3 Challenge is up…head on over and shed a little light on the subject!

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Filed under by Malia, life as a domestic goddess

Note to Self

glamour MaliaUnless you can figure out how to play Wii bowling left handed, you are hearby banned from the activity until you can have shoulder replacement surgery.

Wait. Is there such a thing as shoulder replacement surgery?

Guess I’d better get crackin’ on that left handed thing…

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Filed under by Malia, random

I am Blissfully Domestic – a Blissful Kids story

i am blissfully domestic kitchen

My submission for this week’s “I am Blissfully Domestic“, is the Menu of Ailments story about pretend play with the GMan.

Won’t you share how you’re Blissfully Domestic, too?

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Compliments

glamour MaliaI’m terrible about making compliments to others. It’s weird because I’ll see someone and notice something about them and compliment them in my head but never say anything out loud. I think I’m afraid it will sound trite and insincere. Which is also weird because I truly appreciate it when someone gives me a compliment.

And then there’s the awkwardness of having someone pay you a compliment and you graciously accept but don’t compliment back. I’m never sure what to do in that situation. Again, it seems like it’s insincere to compliment back just because you were given a compliment. And most of the time, I’m not quick enough on my feet to say something truly flattering.

Just the other day, someone complimented me, twice, very sincerely and graciously and all I could do was say thank you. I felt like I must be so self-centered to take a compliment but not give one back.

How do you handle compliments? Are you good at giving them? Do you always compliment back?

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Filed under by Malia, musings

My favorite biscuits

PhotobucketIt’s Mouthwatering Monday! I’m cheating a bit today. I didn’t make anything particularly mouthwatering last week. In fact, we struggled quite a bit with trying to help and support JBelle’s decision to be a vegetarian but not eat mac ‘n cheese or pb&j every day. It was  just one of those weeks where nothing seemed to appeal to her. I tried a new recipe, she didn’t like it (actually, I was pretty much the only one who did like it).  I made a pasta dish, she ate it but GMan didn’t and yesterday I threw the rest of it out because there was no way it was going to be consumed. Finally, this weekend a couple things actually went right! On Saturday, I picked up some Boca Burgers for her. She had one for dinner Saturday night and loved it! On Sunday, we had baked potatoes and salad, she liked that, too. Yay!

So onto the mouthwatering part…my girl Heather over at Home-Ec 101 has the best. biscuit. recipe. ever! I adore these biscuits and they’re easy to make, too. Because of the butter in the recipe, they don’t need additional butter on them, just slather them with your favorite jam or preserves or honey and try not to gulp it down in one bite (which will be hard because they are that good!)

biscuit

doesn't that look delish?

Just click on the picture and it’ll take you to Home-Ec 101 for the recipe.

Gotta go…I just got a hankerin’ for biscuits!

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No, one more thing….be sure to check in at The Diaper Diaries for this week’s 1 Cor. 7:5 challenge! It’s a fun one!

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Filed under by Malia, life as a domestic goddess, link love

A Menu of Ailments

glamour MaliaBoth of our children have wonderful, active imaginations. Pretend play has been a staple in their early childhood years. With JBelle it was acting out scenes from her favorite movies, which was funny because….

JBelle to me: “Mommy, you be Belle and I’ll be Gaston” or “Mommy, you be Analise and I’ll be Preminger”

…she always wanted to be the bad guy!

The GMan, on the other hand, is all about occupations. He likes to pretend he is working in an industry. His current obsession is all things emergency services related. We spend many days being fire chiefs, police officers and occasionally ambulance drivers. His other favorite is playing “restaurant”. He’s the server and we’re the guests. We get to order from an often unpredictable menu of options. It’s not uncommon to order something from his restaurant only for him to come back and sadly inform us that they are “out” of said item.

Then the other day, he happened upon a clipboard that I wasn’t using. He put a piece of paper in it, got a crayon and set up his own little desk in the kitchen. (The recycling bin is his desk and a cooler that is sitting beside it is his chair.) We even made a “name plate” for him and taped it to the desk.

So, I’m sitting at my desk, working on the computer when he comes up to me with his clipboard and asks me what I have on his “menu”. Since I’m used to the restaurant game, I start ordering food. “No, not food Mommy! What do you have? Aches, pains, chills, headache, hot flashes?”

Hot flashes? Did he really just say hot flashes?

Apparently we’re now playing doctor! He gave me his “card” with his phone number on it and a phone (wooden block) to call him at the hospital whenever I needed him. So every few minutes I would pick up my phone (wooden block) and dial his office to complain of an ailment. Fortunately, this doctor makes house calls and is actually a miracle worker because each of my diseases and sufferings were immediately cured by either an imaginary pill or what may possibly have been a voodoo hex. But since I still have only one head, none of my toes have fallen off and my eyes aren’t orange, I pretty sure that was all just make believe!

Though I’m still puzzled over the hot flashes.

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Filed under by Malia, kids & family, parenting, The GMan

I Am Blissfully Domestic

i am bd breadWell, usually more blissful than domestic but still! Every week on Blissfully Domestic we have a chance for you to share your best of all things domestic with the other readers.

My entry into this week’s “I Am Blissfully Domestic” is yesterday’s vegetarian chili recipe! (Gonna milk that one for all it’s worth, ha!)

If you’ve written a post in the last seven days that would fit into any of our 15 categories (such as food/cooking, money matters, marriage relationships, your kids, being healthy/well, etc), head on over to “I Am Blissfully Domestic” add your name & link to the Mr. Linky list and check out who else has been blissfully domestic lately!

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Vegetarian Chili: Mouthwatering Monday

PhotobucketMy girl Rachel over at From the Land of Monkeys & Princesses hosts Mouthwatering Mondays. It’s about posting an uber delish recipe to share with your readers and getting a little link love in return. I thought I’d share a little something I whipped up earlier this week. I forgot to photograph it, so you’ll just have to use your imaginations!

JBelle, our 8 year old, recently decided to become a vegetarian. We’ve been very supportive of her and I have been trying to find ways to make meals that we all can eat. We all like chili, so I decided to put together a vegetarian chili. It was a hit!

Here’s what I used:

  • 2 cans Bush’s pinto beans in mild chili sauce
  • 1 can Bush’s red beans in mild chili sauce
  • 1 can Bush’s seasoned black beans
  • 1 can mild Ro*tel
  • 1 large can crushed tomatoes
  • one small onion, finely chopped
  • about 1 T minced garlic
  • about 1 T chili powder

It’s simple to put together. I sauteed the onions and garlic in a bit of olive oil until soft. Then I put everything into a pot and simmered for a few hours on low. Voila!

It’s totally tonguegasmic!

Speaking of…this one’s for the married ladies in the house. See that 1 Cor 7:5 Challenge button over there to the right? Up a bit, right under the BlissDom ’09 button…yeah, that one! That’s something else I’ll be participating in…you might want to, too. ;)

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Filed under by Malia, life as a domestic goddess, link love