Thursday, April 23, 2009

My Favorite Meal

This lovely creation is my mother-in-law's recipe for taco salad which has now become my favorite meal. I serve mine with Santita's chips (the best!), pineapple, carrots, lettuce, cilantro, cheddar cheese or queso fresco, tomato, avocado, and a squeeze of lime juice. It's muy sabroso, so here's the recipe:

1 pound extra-lean ground beef
1 T. chopped and dried onion
8 oz. tomato sauce
6 oz. tomato paste
3 c. water
2-3 T. chili powder, depending on taste
1/2 c. Minute rice (I use brown, but you can use white)
salt and lots of black pepper

Brown beef, stir in onion. Add remaining ingredients, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes (stir occasionally). Serve over crushed tortilla chips, topped with salad fixings of your choice.

Which Is Worse?

By now, you're all terribly familiar with my obsessive habits. Laundry is most definitely at the top of my list, and I recently put my foot down and asked Adam to refrain from folding any of my or the kids' clothes (clearly, I have problems!). Today as I was preparing a batch of dirty things for the washing machine, I performed my ritualistic sorting of blacks, warm colors, cool colors, and whites and thought to myself, "I must be the craziest person on the planet!" So here's my question: Which is worse...having enough dirty laundry in the basket to constitute a separate batch for each segment of the color spectrum, or actually washing loads in separate batches for each segment of the color spectrum. Either way, my practical side (Schizo, anyone?) is screaming to me to get a grip, while my Martha side is saying, "Excellent work. You're maintaining the vibrancy of that orange shirt so nicely!"

5, 6, 7, 8...Sit Back...Swing Up

5, 6, 7, 8. That is the mantra of my life. I've been hearing it since I was en utero and now my children are garnering the same exposure. It's paying off, though. Recently, I took my girls to an open gym class at The Factory where I coach cheerleading. Amber saw and heard my mom teaching the older girls how to do a back handspring, so she's been imitating Miss Shelley by yelling, "5, 6, 7, 8. Sit back, swing up!" and flailing her arms about like a prep for a back handspring. She's never dared to do it--not that she could...she's progressing well in tumbling but not that well--until today.

I put her down for a nap and went next door into my room to fold some laundry. I heard the familiar count-off and smiled to myself. Then, I heard a bounce on the bed. I couldn't resist, so I sneaked around the corner and saw Amber do a back handspring all by herself! I couldn't believe my eyes. I'm proud of (and terrified by) her for having the courage to try something like that and for knowing all the steps simply from observing other kids do it. She had such a serious look on her face and (this is ridiculous) it brought tears to my eyes! Adorable! Like, totally YAY for cheer!