This is probably the hardest post I’ve ever had to write…

It’s not emotional or deep.

I just REALLY want carnitas and I can’t make them until Sunday when we finish win our Biggest Loser competition. I promised a food post 2 days ago and never delivered.

I feel compelled to write this since the pork in my fridge keeps staring at me whispering “put me in a dutch oven”.

I’ve never ordered carnitas in a restaurant. I am an avid supporter of pork but whenever I go out to eat and it’s an option, everything else seems far more appealing. Since starting this competition I’ve changed the way I eat. I now follow guidelines called macros. Basically I can eat whatever I want as long as it fits this magical formula. Cary plugged in a bunch of numbers on this website and said “Here, eat within these parameters. It works!” So I did, and sure enough, I’m currently about 10lbs lighter.
I’ve started tracking my protein and calories using Livestrong and they have recipes on there as well that provides all the nutrition information which makes life much easier! So while on my hunt for something different, I came upon this recipe. I realize, I’m being lazy by not writing a funny walk through. I was in a fender bender in Chicago today and am currently on Vicodin (I’m fine, just in pain like…all over my body). So have pity on me, MAKE THIS RECIPE, call your mother and invite her over for some, you’ll thank me later!

While I followed the recipe exactly (except for reducing the liquid at the end. It took longer than 8-12 minutes, just keep an eye on it, you want it thick!) I would like to make a quick note about assembling them into tacos:

I use corn tortillas because they’re gluten free.

I made pico de gallo (which I just realized requires it’s own post so I will do that once I’m done with the Vicodin)

While it looks like I put avocado chunks and cilantro on the taco, I really didn’t eat it that way. I actually smooshed (yes that’s a technical term) the avocado onto the tortilla and spread it around so that there was avocado in EVERY bite. That big leaf of cilantro was just to make it pretty!

I did not use sour cream because it did NOT need it! But to each their own.

See you Sunday carnitas! You will be mine…oh yes…you will be mine!

P.S. In defense of the carnitas, the calorie and fat content are really not that bad. However, I would want to eat three tacos with one whole avocado….that is the problem

How Rinnie got her groove back

In a word, SLEEP!

Since I went back to work 2 weeks ago, I have been exhausted. I know that might sound crazy since I didn’t go back to 60 hours a week, but honestly, EXHAUSTED.

Apparently when I go from putzing around the house, cleaning things, watching How I Met Your Mother on Netflix (as well as, Scrubs, Ghost Hunters International and Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and napping with the dogs to driving an hour into the city to wave my hands around the result is a grumpy 4 year old type tantrum because I DIDN’T GET MY NAPTIME!!! I wondered for a week if this would be my new normal.  It seemed no amount of coffee would improve my mood and if it did, it was only briefly.

So I stopped blogging as well. Everything in my head was me yelling at stupid people. I don’t think they were being stupid on purpose. In fact now I might look at their  actions and think, “That wasn’t nearly as stupid as I thought it was.” (Then again no…I’ll probably blog about it eventually) If there is one thing I’ve learned from Cary it’s that negativity breeds negativity and once you get in that hole, it’s hard to dig your way back out. So I put my laptop down and hoped that things would change. And they did.

Yesterday morning I woke with a smile on my face. I got out of bed, cleaned up the house, packed for our little overnight stay and felt like life just might be okay again. This morning I woke up earlier, feeling even BETTER! I’m sure it had something to do with the fact that I’m in a hotel with nothing to do but read my book until checkout at noon, but even so. Things are looking up again!

Which means tomorrow….I talk about FOOD!

 

“I’m so not impressed!”

So, yesterday I had an interaction with someone who didn’t mean to, but basically said “Oh you’re a sign language interpreter, how cute!” I remembered a “note” I had written on Facebook (remember Facebook notes?) and went looking for it. Sure enough it’s STILL THERE!!

I wanted to post it here because it truly captures how I feel in general about my profession and the things people say to us. However since 2008 I have been exposed to many comments far worse than what is described here. I think I’ll probably write about them a bit but unless you’re an interpreter you really can’t begin to understand. Hopefully you can laugh with me as if you do.

Enjoy! (warning, it’s slightly angry and ranty) *yes I know ranty isn’t a word spell check, why are you being a douche?*

‘I’m so not impressed’-July 17 2008

So, I think it’s really funny when people ask about what I do. For most people I’m sure it’s simple and goes something like this:

Person A: So what do you do?
Not Me: Oh, I’m in sales.
Person A: Really? That sounds interesting.
Not Me: Yeah it’s ok

This is a nice simple conversation. I think I would enjoy that. My conversation usually goes something like this:

Person A: So what do you do?
Me: I’m a sign language interpreter
Person A: REALLY?? WOW! You must help a lot of people!
Me: Not really.
Person A: No what you do is changing people’s lives!
Me: Uh….only in the sense that a mechanic changes people’s lives.
Person A: HUH?
Me: I provide a service, then charge for the service, much in the same way a mechanic does and for probably the same cost.
Person A: OH…so you get paid for that?

At this time I would like to point out that the original question was “So what do you do?” This usually implies without actually stating that this sentence ends with “…for a living.”)

Me: Yes, I have a degree in interpreting.
Person A: OH WOW! So how many foreign languages do you know?
Me: Well, just the one. American Sign Language.
Person A: Oh, well is that technically a language?

At this point I kind of laugh a little like its no big deal that they just insulted the crap out of me. I want to say “Yes, I have a degree in FAKE LANGUAGE INTERPRETING!”

It’s like once they find out that I can’t interpret any spoken languages and my services are not free, I’m no longer impressive!

So, pardon me while I get on my soap box,

I interpret sign language into spoken english, I also interpret spoken english into sign language. They have two completely different grammatical structures, there are like 800 different styles of signing. I sometimes have to predict what the speaker is going to say even if they are clueless about what they are trying to say. Deaf people sometimes sign furiously fast and sometimes sloppy. They also look at you like you’re stupid if you have to have them repeat something because they were signing so fast and sloppy(not always, it usually happens when you’re on your period and hyper emotional).

Due to the nature of my job and my professional code of ethics, I really can’t go on, but please remember this:
what I do, is a bona fide profession and when you tell me “oh yeah, I know somebody who does that at my church” I hope you realize it’s not usually the SAME THING. They probably learned a few signs from a book and decided they could interpret the WORD OF GOD just fine! You comparing my skills with that “person who does that at your church” makes me envision whipping you with a car antenna!

Grain free Peanut Butter Cookies

Peanut butter is one of those things, I now crave on a daily basis. I wasn’t a huge fan of it as a child but once I turned 20, my mom started making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on Health Nut bread. They always tasted better when she made them. I think it was her peanut butter to jelly ratio. Perfection, really. She would cut the sandwich into fourths and serve with an ice cold glass of milk. Mmmmmmmm…then I’d be in the bathroom for the rest of the night with no idea why! (GLUTEN!!!!) I have yet to have a gluten free peanut butter and jelly sandwich that rivaled my mother’s.

Apparently on June 12th was National Peanut Butter Cookie Day. I enjoy silly made up holidays! Even if I procrastinate and don’t celebrate them on time. I started trolling for GF recipes and came across a LOVELY recipe by the person who helped me ease into my gluten free lifestyle, The Gluten Free Girl. They’re gluten free, they’re grain free, they’re dairy free, they’re freaking delicious.

I wanted to post this recipe because it’s a quick easy recipe if you ever run into a situation where you need to make something yummy for someone who is GFCF (gluten-free, casein-free).

Simply mix one cup of natural peanut butter with one cup granulated sugar until combined. Shauna recommends not using an electric mixer, and hand mixing worked beautifully. Then add one teaspoon of baking soda and an egg. Once it’s all combined and looking like dough…oh wait…

Did I mention having a kitchen scale is THE BEST? For baking, it is essential if you want the cookies to be uniform. It’s also makes baking easier because baking is really about ratios. That’s a whole different post.

You want to make tiny balls 15 grams in size, then roll them in sugar.

Using the natural peanut butter and adding the sugar really gives them a stronger peanut butter flavor.

I do not recommend this recipe unless you use natural peanut butter.

I mean just look how happy that little guy looks in his sugar bath!

Next you should make the traditional fork criss-cross pattern while smushing down the tiny, happy, sugar coated spheres.

Bake for 10 minutes. Let rest on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.

 

Eat with an ice cold glass of milk! (Just like mom served with her famous PBJs)

Each cookie is about 77 calories and 2 grams of protein.

Now tell me again how gluten free food is gross….

 

POKE CAKE!!

That’s right! It’s a food post!

I make a gluten free poke cake that is, as my husband would say, “The business!” If you’ve never made a poke cake, it’s one of the easiest things to make ever! Ready?? Here we go!

Get a white cake box mix.

Follow the directions but bake it in a 9×13 pan/casserole dish.

After it’s cool go to town with a chopstick or a straw and poke a BUNCH of holes in it like this:

That’s a lot of holes!

Now find some Jell-o gelatin. Whatever you have in your cupboard is fine. I prefer raspberry(anything red or pink is prettiest) but I think I’ll try lemon at some point this summer because Cary LOVES lemon.

Mix the gelatin and 1 cup of boiling water until it’s dissolved. (about 2 mins)

Then add 1/2 cup cold water to cool it down a bit.

Now pour that Jell-o goodness all over the cake!

This is really difficult isn’t it? Baking is hard, you should probably just stop and buy one of those crappy artificial tasting things from the Walmart bakery.

If you’re still here and not buying some gross store bought cake, then your delicious home made version should look something like this after you’ve poured on all the Jell-o.

Refrigerate that bad boy for at least 2 hours, I prefer to make it the day before I’m planning to serve it.

Traditionally, poke cake is topped with Cool Whip. I think that stuff is gross. I loved it as a kid, but now I know what’s in it and I’m just not down with that. In fact, if you want an interesting article on how Cool Whip is essentially lube, click here.

So you’re probably wondering, “Rinnie if you don’t top your poke cake with lube…what DO you top it with?”

CREAM CHEESE FROSTING!!!!!!
4oz unsalted butter
4oz cream cheese
1.5 cups powdered sugar (most recipes call for 2 cups but I prefer the cream cheese taste to be a bit more prevalent)
smidge of vanilla (ok 1tsp if you need a measurement)

Whip it all together with an electric mixer.

Frost the cake and keep refrigerated until ready to serve. It will be moist and delicious and everyone will want the recipe.

WAIT we’re not done! Lick the mixers, lick the bowl, polish off every last bit of that cream cheese frosting and if you get full or it gets too sweet, throw it in the fridge but for the love of ALL that is Holy and sacred DO NOT waste one bit of it!

In case you were wondering, THIS is what The Business looks like!

Thankful Thursday

So the whole not complaining on Facebook is going well.  Remembering to write what I”m thankful for, hasn’t been as easy. So I think I’ll just post my gratitudes here. *Did you all know that “gratitudes” isn’t a word? seriously, spell check is all angry and red underlining it each time I type gratitudes. Gratitudes gratitudes gratitudes. Seriously spell check, how else would you pluralize more than one gratitude?*

I’m thankful for gluten free cupcakes with chocolate frosting and a big ‘ol glass of milk! This one was from a bakery in Indy called The Flying Cupcake. It was an adorable bakery with a beautiful assortment of gluten-full cupcakes as well chocolate and vanilla gluten free cupcakes and gfree chocolate chip cookies. Are my recipes better? I think so, but it was nice to have a treat that I didn’t have to slave over!

I’m thankful that I’ll be going back to work next week. It will be slow going for awhile, but I love my job and have missed it tremendously. As great as being a housewife is…I’m ready to go back to being a fiscally contributing member of my family!

I’m thankful that this is what happens around 6:30-7pm every day. The sun comes beaming through the bow window making it IMPOSSIBLE to sit on the couch and do nothing. It’s blinding. It’s God’s way of saying “Cary will be home in like an hour and you don’t want him to think you sat on the couch and watched Ghost Hunters International all day!”

The original caption for this pic was “I’ve got 99 problems and a flabby booty ain’t one”

I’m thankful for finding a new love: picking up heavy stuff! That’s what Cary calls lifting weights. Three days a week we do a combination of “old school” weight lifting exercises: Deadlift, Squat, Over head Press, Bench Press and Pull-Ups. I’m ecstatic about my progress.  I am noting a STRIKING difference in my body.

<——–This is not a pic of me! You can tell by the dark hair, I mean I totally look like that, really the only difference is the hair….what…seriously….

This is my niece Abby Jo and my nephew Jonah James.

I am so thankful to be a part of their lives!

Abby LOVES her Uncle Cary so much that she not only lets him draw a mustache on her finger, she also uses it appropriately.

I’m thankful for some incredible friends who have walked with me through this season of life. It has been difficult and I’ve had so many growing pains. You have helped me feel loved when I felt I was unlovable. Thank you.

For the love of Brie!

I was pulling the content from my old blog and reading through some entries. I thought this one was pretty funny and it’s actually about food. yeah have you noticed I’m not writing much about food? I’ve got issues. Anyway, this is from September 15th 2010. Enjoy!

My husband thinks it’s hilarious how much I love Brie cheese.

Have you ever tasted Brie?  Have you ever tasted Brie with JAM???? It’s flippin’ delicious but I’m getting ahead of myself.

When we went on our honeymoon the breakfast buffet had all kinds of cheeses including my beloved Brie.  So every morning I would grab 5 crusty pieces of bread and 5 pieces of brie then make myself a brie sandwich. (This was obviously when I still had metabolism and could enjoy that lovely bread that was full of gluten) I would ooh and ahh and proclaim my love for this amazing delight!

Well, I did that for the first 3 days…..

Then I found out cheese is binding….I couldn’t poop….I was constipated on our HONEYMOON!

You know the sad part? I didn’t care!  I still wanted my doggone Brie every morning!  I actually think our first “fight” as a married couple was over the Brie:

*I pile my plate with Brie sandwich fixins*

Cary: Really?!?

Me: What?

Cary: You were sick all yesterday cuz you couldn’t poop and you’re still gonna eat that?

Me: But it’s YUMMY!

Cary:  So yummy that you want to be cramped up all day?

Me: I’ll just drink more booze to even it out.

Cary: NO!

Me: But booze is yummy!

Cary: *rolls his eyes and laughs*

I decided to stick with Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee(SO HEAVENLY), chocolate filled croissant (DAMN YOU GLUTEN!I can’t eat these anymore) and fruit for the rest of the trip.

Flash forward to my birthday 2008.  We decided to go to the most romantic restaurant in Chicago and stay at the Hyatt downtown.  The restaurant kinda sucked but we got a really sweet deal that included a breakfast buffet at the hotel in the morning.  This buffet is normally like $25/person so this was a huge score.

We got down to breakfast and I’m looking at the different selections.  Your standard fare: Pancakes, waffles, sausage, bacon, scrambled eggs, and NO EGGS BENEDICT.

Me: Where the heck is the eggs benedict?

Cary: I don’t know but there is a giant wheel of brie over there next to that fresh baked bread!

My eyes got huge and I ran over to make myself a Brie and strawberry jam sandwich.  It sounds crazy….crazy DELICIOUS! He didn’t even say a word about my delectable sandwich that was now valued at approximately $25.

Made me want to marry him all over again!

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