In-N-Out, Frisco, TX (Taken with picplz.)

Because Tom’s already mad at me. (Taken with picplz.)

Today’s order (Taken with picplz.)

Swedish Sushi

My pal Heather sent me a great recipe for sushi that nearly anyone will eat. I know what you might be thinking: Not me, I’ll never eat raw fish. I’ve had that thought, too, but I love this sushi!
Here’s the recipe:
Swedish Fish/Rice Crispy Sushi Treats

  • 1 package Swedish fish
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 (10.5 oz.) package of marshmallows
  • 5 cups crispy rice cereal
  • 1 box fruit by the foot (blue or green)

1. In a large microwave safe bowl, combine butter and marshmallows. Microwave on high for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until smooth.
2. Remove from the oven and stir in the cereal.
3. Working with the mixture while it is still warm, shape into small ovals in the palm of your hand. It helps to put a little butter on your hands before working with it.
4. Cut strips of fruit by the foot to fit around each ball. Place one Swedish fish on each ball and wrap fruit strip around it. Let cool and serve!

Click on the photo to see the entire set.

As the chef, I, of course, had to sample the product, for quality assurance purposes. Two enthusiastic thumbs up!

It’s true: bacon makes everything better


Christmas fun

I received this e-mail from a neighbor. It’s one of those things where you read their answers, then fill in your own and pass it on to the people you’d like to hear back from. Seeing as how while most of you will be getting ready for work or what-have-you this morning while I’m undergoing prep for surgery to get “unscrewed”, I won’t be in much of a blogging mood, and thought I’d leave this here for you to enjoy.
Please feel free to leave your own answers in the comments, or post to your own blog and link to it in the comments. Merry Christmas!
Welcome to the 2007 Holiday Edition of Getting to Know Your Friends! You know the drill. Don’t be a scrooge! Fill it out, pass it on, blah blah blah. I would love to hear your answers.
1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate?
This time of year, I have to go with the nog. I can get hot chocolate any time.
2. Does Santa wrap the presents or just sit them under the tree?
Growing up, Santa just left stuff under the tree, or on the coach next to the tree, etc. Since then, he seems to have upgraded his process, as the gifts he leaves are now wrapped.
3. Colored or white lights?
I prefer white, though I do enjoy the colored lights when they’re done well.
4. Do you hang mistletoe?
Nope. I’m already kissing the person I want to kiss the most.
5. When do you put your decorations up?
We have no hard and fast rules on this one. The tree just went up this weekend, and the lights were put on last night.
6. What is your favorite holiday dish?
Can I go with the nog again?
7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child?
The older gentlemen, Mr. Gridley, who lived next door to my grandparents, would dress as Santa and come over to hand out our presents when we did Christmas at their house. As a child, having Santa right there, handing you the presents he’d brought all the way from the North Pole? Incredible.
8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?
I’d have to check with my folks, but it was likely somewhere around ten or eleven years of age. I overheard some other boys talking about, and I confronted my parents with the information. They told me the truth, but swore me to secrecy, as my sister, five years younger than I, still believed.
9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?
That usually depends on where we might be, but generally, yes.
10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree?
White lights, with ornaments from my childhood, plus some that were gifts from my mother-in-law, my mom, and my grandmothers. They’re pretty much all personal momentos of one sort or another. No tinsel or garland. Pretty simple, the way we like it.
11. Snow: Love it or hate it?
Love it, just because, growing up in south Louisiana, and now living in north Texas, we don’t see snow often.
12. Can you ice skate?
Nope. Heck, I barely remember how to roller skate!
13. Do you remember your favorite gift?
So many were favorites at so many different times of my life, I really couldn’t say.
14. What’s the most important thing about the holidays for you?
Spending time with the family. It’s great to see Christmas through the eyes of a child–my son–once again.
15. What is your favorite holiday dessert?
A tie between my grandmother’s chocolate pie, and my grandmother’s lemon pie. The tie is always broken by having a slice of each.
16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?
Watching my son open his presents on Christmas morning.
17. What is on top of your tree?
An angel.
18. Which do you like best giving or receiving?
Definitely the giving, though I won’t lie and say the receiving–especially when it’s something from my carefully assembled wish list–comes in a close second. Hey, at least I’m honest.
19. What is your favorite Christmas song?
I’m a sucker for a well done “What Child is This?”, and I also love “Joy To The World” and “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”.
20. Do you like candy canes?
To eat? Not really, but I don’t mind them otherwise.
21. What is your favorite Christmas movie?
Technically not a movie, but I love “A Charlie Brown Christmas”

A customer service tale

Once upon a time…okay, so, every week, we go out to our local Mi Cocina after the little phisch’s swim lesson. By the time the lesson is over and he’s been dried off and dressed, it’s the dinner hour, so off we go to get the little phisch his weekly cheese quesadilla and Spanish rice.
As I stated, we go pretty much each week. We’re regulars. The staff pretty much know what we’re going to order to drink, and what our son is going to be eating. It’s a really nice feeling to be known and appreciated, which is yet another reason we continue our patronage.
Tonight, it was just myself and the boy, as the missus has begun a new schedule with the personal trainer. As usual, he got the quesadilla and rice. As usual, I got the #4 (Chris’s favorite). Yes, it is my favorite, but that’s also what it’s called on the menu. The #4 consists of a beef taco in a hard shell, a cheese and onion enchilada, and sides of rice and refried beans. The food arrives in short order, and we dig in.
We’re well in to the meal. The little man has taken care of the quesadilla, and is picking at his rice and lettuce. I’m done with the taco and enchilada, and picking at my own rice, and to a lesser extent, the beans. Then the little phisch tells me he needs to go to the bathroom, so off we go.
Business finished, we return to our table, only to discover that it’s been cleared. Our plates are on a tray, and our drinks are gone, too. The waiter sees us, and the look on his face tells me he thought we may have skipped out or something, and whoops, maybe I shouldn’t have cleared the table after all.
He asks if we were done. I pretty much was. I ask my son if he was finished or if he’s still hungry. “I’m still hungry, Daddy.” Our waiter nods and off he goes.
We sit back down. Our drinks are replaced in short order. About three minutes later–and I’m quite serious, it was about three minutes, and certainly no more than five–new, full plates of food are set down in front of us. The manager on duty arrives, picks up the check, and informs me we will not be paying for tonight’s dinner.
I insist I pay for the meal, especially in light that we’ve now begin given two. No, I’m told, it was our mistake. But we just went to the restroom, I told her. It’s okay, really. No, no, don’t worry about it. Would you like a to-go box? Yes, I tell her resignedly, that would be great.
So the little phisch digs in to another quesadilla, and I take care of the taco, figuring it’s the one thing in my own meal that won’t refrigerate and reheat well, and, well, I really like tacos. The rest goes in to the to-go box. We finish, I drop the tip on the table, and we leave.
You bet your bottom dollar we’ll go back, too.
That’s Mi Cocina, for those of you in the Dallas/Fort Worth area (and Kansas City).

For the waffle-loving geek who has everything

Ladies and gentlemen, do you ever find yourself worrying over what to buy the geek in your life for their birthday, or your anniversary, or Christmas? Wonder no more. Just pick up the waffle iron that makes keyboard waffles.
Oh, yes, you read that right. Keyboard waffles.
[Via Lee via IM.]

Quite the memory

The memory capacity of three year-olds is amazing.
As we were wrapping up dinner, my wife put forth the possibility of our going out for some ice cream for dessert. We kept this to ourselves for a few moments, thinking we may need to use it as a possible bribe with the little phisch. We did not have to, thankfully, and when we mentioned going out for ice cream, he stated he wanted “Cookie Monster Ice Cream!”
Cookie Monster Ice Cream?!?!?
So on the way to Emack & Bolio’s, the missus and I are wondering if this is one of their flavors. If it is, then we would be suitably impressed, as the last time we were at E&B’s, it was before Christmas, and the little phisch remembered having it more than three months ago.
We walk in the door, and sure enough, there it is: Cookie Monster Ice Cream. Cookies and cream, with chocolate-chip cookie dough mixed in. One kid’s cup was ordered up.
The boy has some memory.
This could be trouble.

It’s the little things that matter

In the Starkist Lunch To-Go “meals”, or as I refer to them, “snack packs”, you have six crackers (when you really need seven to eight), a sealed pouch of Starkist white albacore tuna, a pack of reduced-calorie mayonnaise, a pack of sweet relish, a small plastic spoon to mix the previous three together, a napkin, and an after-meal mint.
A mint.
Nice touch, Starkist. Well done.
I’m still hungry.