Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Allison's Aztec Casserole

Aztec Casserole
~Pastel o Budin Azteca~

adapted from the traditional Mexican cookbook Lauren made for me


1 lb. chicken breast, cooked, shredded or cubed
1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes (with spices added)
1 11-oz. can Super Sweet Yellow & White corn
1 small can salsa verde (green salsa made from jalapenos)
1/2 lb. shredded cheese (Cheddar or Mexi-blend)
2 flour tortillas, burrito-sized
boil-in-bag white rice, cooked according to package
1/2 green pepper, diced
olive or Canola oil for frying
spices: salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic salt, basil, lemon pepper
(sour cream optional)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees (Fahrenheit). Lightly grease a 9x9 baking pan.

Cook chicken - lightly salt, pepper, and lemon pepper.
Cook rice - season with onion powder, garlic salt, and basil.

Use skillet to lightly fry two tortillas, not to the point of crispy.
Then add oil and saute green pepper.

Cut each tortilla in half; use two halves as the first layer of the casserole.

Add half the tomatoes and corn.

Add half the diced chicken and rice.

Add half the green peppers and dot with spoonfuls of salsa verde.

Cover with half the cheese.

Repeat each layer. Cheese should top the casserole. (Can add sour cream to top if desired.)

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. (You may have leftover tomatoes and will have extra salsa verde.)



Thursday, July 16, 2009

What Mom and I Did Last Night

Went we kayaking with a group of women for a Sunset Kayak along the Merry Meeting River in Alton. Delightful!
(all photos in this post by Barbara Bald)

After meeting with mom and a real estate agent all afternoon, trying to find a job, have a baby, plan my dismal finances, and basically solve the world peace crisis, I needed a break!
The trip and great food were organized by the River Run Deli in Alton. We stopped for a picnic after paddling upstream for 45 minutes.
Then more kayaking back down river. Beautiful weeds and lily pads, lotus blossoms and birds, frog chirps, girl talk, and setting sun.
After putting up all our gear, we were given wonderful ice cream sandwiches made with ginger cookies and chocolate ice cream - yum! And then we saw this mama Robin nesting with two or more chicklings right at the deli! A great end to the evening.
Thank you to God and to Barb, who invited us, for small miracles and moments of joy.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

On grief

~Henry, from The Time Traveler's Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger:

"Today is the thirty-seventh anniversary of my mother's death. I have thought of her, longed for her, every day of those thirty-seven years, and my father has, I think, thought of her almost without stopping. If fervent memory could raise the dead, she would be our Eurydice, she would rise like Lady Lazarus from her stubborn death to solace us. But all of our laments could not add a single second to her life, not one additional beat of the heart, nor a breath. The only thing my need could do was bring me to her."

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Some very special thoughts on humility

From Donna's recent post at DQ's Windmill:

Here in the West, we are disinclined to nurture a reverential attitude toward anyone, with its associations of suppression and tyranny - a lamentable deficiency, as the humility it fosters opens the way to spiritual growth and maturity.


1. May we both be protected so that there will be no hindrance in the process of learning.
2. May we both enjoy the process of learning- may we look forward to every meeting between us.
3. May there be more and more enthusiasm and strength in both of us for this learning.
4. May there be clarity in both of us - in learning and understanding on the part of the student and in teaching on the part of the teacher.
5. May there be no hatred or jealousy between the teacher and the student. May the relationship be one of total friendship.
6. May we not be agitated by internal factors from within us, by environment or by some forces beyond our control.
7. May there be no agitation in body, mind or speech.
8. May the symptoms of all obstacles be reduced.


And from my friend Angela today, quoting her pastor:

"Humility allows us to serve others without caring whether it is noticed or not."

Red dresses only for skinny chicks? What?

NWA/Delta airlines gets new hot designer dresses for flight attendants but not in larger sizes...

Check it out.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

What's Going On Right Now

1. I am up late as usual, enjoying a blog or two!

2. It has been raining incessantly in New Hampshire...until about two days ago when this big yellow ball appeared in the sky, and the air got hot. We don't know exactly what's going on. But someone said something about "sunshine"? I will have to google that to find out what it means.

3. I am trying to find some pet sitting gigs in our condo complex for extra money.

4. Am reading "The Time Traveler's Wife" and enjoying the mind bending aspect of thinking in time travel mode. Best question the girl always asks the man, "When are you from?"

5. We are hooked on watching Battlestar Galactica, or as I like to call it, Battlestar LaGeektica. We are in Season 2.5 right now and deep in the thick of man's fight against the Cylons to keep from going extinct! Plus a whole lot of other General Hospital*-type drama. [*If you're too young to know that show, think the great slutty parts of Grey's Anatomy.]

6. Scott is taking a million photos of the beautiful New Hampshire slice of earth and working on his permanent portfolio online. Selling prints already, but there will be a beautiful online gallery to peruse soon. Stay tuned!

7. Coming up to Dad's DDay anniversary. Must find some other term for it than "Death Day." Not looking forward to the passing of this milestone. The summer has been rough all the way around, stupid with milestones.

8. We are getting ready to go camping on Grape Island in Maine next weekend. Mom will watch our cat babies.

9. Still working on the pregnancy project. Am now off reading pregnancy books b/c they always make me think I am pregnant (which is only fun until the darn stick reads "negative" AGAIN). Am now reading novels and autobiographies about women who struggled to get pregnant. Whoa, those books are an emotional roller coaster, but so good and not quite as threatening.

10. Working part-time at the bankruptcy law office and still greatly enjoying that work. Continuing to look for full-time work in this dismal economy. My unemployment has been recalculated (since I have been on it a whole year! Ack!!) and now it's worth even less, if that's possible! So I am hitting the pavement with renewed vigor, looking for full-time work. Or freelance. Doing some editing and that's highly enjoyable.

And how are you?

Friday, July 10, 2009

Some of my favorite things

saying goodnight
winter and snow
love songs, in almost every genre
the feeling of Friday night
wine (lately)
snuggy babies
someone you can laugh and cry with
starry nights

And You?


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

I always knew Chicago was the coolest city

Sears Tower unveils glass balconies on Skydeck

A general view of cars driving on Wacker Drive is seen through a glass floor which is part of "The Ledge", 1,353 feet (412 meters) above the street, in Chicago July 1, 2009. The Ledge is part of Skydeck Chicago on the 103rd floor of the Sears Tower. REUTERS/Frank Polich (UNITED STATES SOCIETY TRAVEL)


Check out the link and the other photos. V exciting.