Thursday, December 27, 2012

Dixie's Tupperware party -- awesome day out with some girlfriends

Yesterday some good friends and I went to Dixie's Tupperware Party which is playing through the end of December at the Garner Galleria theater in the DCPA complex.  We had a blast! This is one hysterical show with a heart-felt message at the end and lots of risque humor that makes us laugh at ourselves, and well, others -- in a good natured ribald way.

 We parked at the DCPA and walked up to the 16th street mall to get some lunch.  It was super cold but only five blocks so we sucked it up with only a minimal amount of whining.  We had lunch/dessert at the Cheesecake Factory.
 Umm...Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake...holy cow, over the top good...thank goodness my friend Colleen ordered it and offered me a couple three bites because I would have used my week of allotted calories on just that piece....and it would have been worth it.  After lunch and dessert we made the freezing cold trek back to the DCPA.  Fun Denver fact, in different areas of downtown they have sounds of trains, people talking or livestock coming out of the sidewalk vents.  I don't know why, but it makes me laugh.

The Galleria theater is a small theater with drink service.  It's a cozy informal way to see a show, especially a comedy.  We started out with writing our names on some ID tags with numbers pre printed -- because like all good Tupperware parties Dixie held a couple of raffles.

Before the show, Dixie comes on stage to give us the 'rules' ie, no cell phones and if there's a fire, "get out" but those of us on the doorless side of the theater are 'going to go up in flames' but that's okay, since we're close to the Christmas tree, we'll be the first to see "the baby Jesus"
 We all ordered hot drinks, did I mention how freakin' cold it was yesterday.  The show was great, we all laughed -- continuously. Dixie is a parolee who needed to find a job to get her three kids back and she had an ah ha moment and decided that Tupperware would get her out of the Alabama trailer park (where a lot of her humor comes from) and provide for her family.  During her interactive comedy routine, she not only gave the traditional uses for the different tupperware pieces, she gave us alternative uses...such as using the cupcake holders for jello shots (for the Church social, and it'll hold 18, enough for you and the pastor).

There was a question and testimonial time and one of the ladies at our table, asked "how do I get my son to return my favorite piece of Tupperware" Dixie had her call her son and she left a message on his cell phone giving him a hard time about 'stealing' that piece of tupperware and how he needed to return it with a yummy store bought treat (because she just knew he couldn't cook, ungrateful son) and a note telling his "mama how much he loves her".

Interspersed with funny quips about lesbians, men who don't appreciate Tupperware, and hookers who will burst into flames if they walk into a church she weaved in the history of Tupperware and how Brownie Wise was an integral part of the success of Tupperware at a time when many people thought that women did not have a head for business.  She ended the show with a heart felt message that we are all worthy.  Which seems corny but having been to so many direct-marketing home parties, including a Tupperware party or two...this is so part of the experience...just as with her comedy spiel and alternative uses for the product a little bit MORE than your average party.

 She let us take our picture with her....she was very gracious and funny and all around a fantastic way to spend the day! Not to mention being in the company of some very fun lovely ladies!

In hopes that Dixie will again make #1 sales person for Tupperware, I purchased the meat marinating pan (I forgot the name of it, but it's 702 on the order sheet).  I will definitely think of the show each time I use it, as well as her 'demonstration' of rubbing spices on a tube steak -- did I mention how off-color this show is...but I enjoy humor like that....and if you do to, I highly recommend this show!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Helping out my husband:

My husband is working for this great start-up company called Wavecloud It's an online store where you can buy e-books for your I-pad, Kindle Fire or computer.  They eventually want to help authors self-publish and do online book clubs etc....sort of an Amazon, Good Reads, Online-press rolled into one.  Right now they are giving away a bunch of e-books to help launch their website.  They really want to know how user friendly the site is, how easy or hard it is to download their reader give them a ton of feed back (good and bad) support AT wavecloud DOT com.  Feel free to share this with your friends.

Here's the official blurb:

Here is the cool news.  Our company,, has worked hard for the last year preparing for today, our birthday!  We are launching a new eBook store that intends to change the way Readers connect with Readers and Authors alike.

We have a long way to go, but for now, I’m just excited to be able to launch the company and start selling eBooks.

Anyway, Here is what you can tell your friends: Until the money runs out, WaveCloud will be purchasing an eBook for every new registered user at our web site. 

We have more than 150,000 eBooks available in our store, so hopefully, they can find one that they are interested in reading.

This link takes you to our landing page, which explains the promotion:

I know you want to share the promotion with your friends. Here is a shorter link that takes you to the same promotions page at our store:

If you can share more info with your friends, be sure to tell them that we have a Reader Application for the iPad, iPhone, Android tablets and the Kindle Fire tablets.  Unfortunately, our ebooks won’t work on the Kindle Reader devices (yet).


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Home Made Painted Christmas Ornaments

Every year I make a bunch of ornaments to hand out at my annual ornament exchange party.  I've been pinning ideas for the past year and chose to do this one from this blog.  Hers turned out so much better, as is the case with most things I do.  Even so, I'm really happy how these turned out!
 I was going to go with small bulbs...because I figured it would be faster (making 50 of them) and cheaper. But, I found this cool shape at Michaels, sort of a flat circle.  I bought 52 of them.  
 I started by protecting the surface of our kitchen table.  That's my sister in the corner there...she came over to keep me company and cheer me on.
 The blog where I stole got the idea from used a bunch of different colors.  I'm of the keep it simple mentality when for a light and dark blue.
 Here's a better idea of the shape of the Christmas bulbs.
 In the original blog she mentioned using acrylic paints and shaking the bulb around. I'm not sure if it's the brand of paint I used, or the style of bulb....but it didn't work too well. I added some water and it helped quite a bit, especially with mixing the two blues and then giving me a third blue in the finished product.
 Added a little water.
 Added some paint

 Added some of the darker paint
 and shook it around
 from side to side
 and up and down
One thing I learned while doing this is to wad up some paper towels and shake the ornament with that on top to catch excess watery paint...otherwise you could have paint flying all over the place -- oops.
 I was kind of afraid it looked too 'stripey' the way I was doing it.  So I thought of adding some oil to the mixture.  Doing so gave it a more marbleized effect.  Which I liked
 The one on the lower right corner is the one with oil.  The problem is the next day, some of those had the paint separate a little bit and of the 5 I broke they were the ones with the oil...not sure if it's just they were slippier or if there was some weird chemical reaction.
 Bought 52 of them and after breakage I have 47 to give away.
 After letting everything dry, I took some windex and cleaned them up.
I'd like to say I was doing these with Christmas carols and laughter playing in the back ground and everyone in the family celebrating good cheer. But I had Walking Dead on and the kids and I were discussing the best way to defeat Zombies and how to survive a Zombie apocalypse.
 A quick look in the middle of the finished product pictures to show how messy my hands got.  Really it's just me, it's not that messy of a project....I walk by paint and get it on myself.
I'd say the project took about 5 hours from start to finish and cost about $45.

A Diamond in the Stuff


Sunday, November 04, 2012

Individual Meatloaves Recipe (made in muffin tins)

I've been seeing these individual meatloaf recipes on Pinterest. I've been wanting to try them and Jake, the eldest has been asking for meatloaf recently AND because we just got back from Italy (in the wee hours of this morning -- can you say jet-lag anyone?) I decided to make a typical American meal to celebrate being home.  Also, after eating authentic Italian food, I realized my Americana-Italian cooking is not so bellesimo.

After a huge trip to the grocery store, a couple hundred loads of laundry and catching up on some of my shows (love my DVR) I made some mini meatloaves.  I used my own meatloaf recipe though.  It's a super easy recipe, made easier with these muffin tin meatloaves so I thought I'd share.

Individual Meatloaves
(made in muffin tins)

Mix together:

1 lb lean ground beef
1 egg
1/2 zucchini peeled and grated
1 carrot peeled and grated
2-3 tbs roasted red peppers minced
1 small sweet yellow onion minced
2-3 tbs chili sauce
1/8 cup of Italian bread crumbs

After mixing, place in Pam-sprayed muffin tins. This recipe will make 12. Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 20-25 minutes.  I don't like any part of my meat to moo so I baked them for 25.

There are all these blogs where people write about their menu plans, and because I'm a geek that way, I thought how fun and decided to try it too...I find it really helpful to see what other people are eating, not to mention I have a certain addiction fascination for food.  So Gonna give you my meal plan for the week as well as link it up to this blog.

Mini Meatloaves, green beans
Honey Garlic Pork Chops, brussels sprouts recipe found on Pinterest and can be found here. Haven't tried it yet but it looks good.
Coconut Curry Soup with Noodles, cucumber-tomato salad. I am on the hunt for a yummy curry soup. This one doesn't have chicken so I'll add some grilled chicken and if it's the the "one" I'll be so happy. It's another recipe from Pinterest and you can find it on this link
Jalapeno Chicken and Rice Casserole, artichokes, also found on Pinterest and also a recipe I haven't tried before.  I really like trying new recipes.  This one looked great because no canned cream of whatever soups. You can find it on blog I'm going to grill enough chicken for this recipe as well as the soup.

The eldest and I are leaving for a baseball tournament next weekend (for the eldest, I don't play) and so I added a couple 'easy' dinners for Jason and the youngest.

Grilled turkey burgers (premade ones), sweet potato fries (frozen) and steamed broccoli.
Green chili.  This is one of Jason's faves.  We went to Nick's to get our roasted chilis only to realize we were too late. Thankfully they had a bunch of roasted chilis frozen.  I learned something new when you freeze chilis, you freeze them with the skin on.  I've been peeling them.  Next year I'll figure it out.
Left overs.

There it is.

Linking up here:

Lori Ann's food & fam

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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Pompei Scavi, Italy

Yesterday we ventured out on our own to Pompei Scavi.  The night before we watched the BBC documentary of what happened when Mt. Vesuvius blew.  It was interesting and I highly recommend it, especially if you decide to visit.  The train ride there was about an hour. We took the train from Pozzuoli to Naples central station (Naples, Garabaldi) there we caught the train to Pompei.
The tickets into the museum were 11 Euros each (no discount for children, unless you are from an EU country).
We really like the Steve Reeves' Italy tour guide (well my brother and his wife really like it and we agree, it was very helpful). He mentioned to buy the Pompei guide in the book store and take it along with you during your walking trip.
One of the houses with some steps.  Jason's stepping out of a little alcove.
Ampitheatre, the guide book said it was built in the Hellinistic style.  
 It's amazing how these cobblestone streets from so long ago are so well-preserved.  It reminded me of the streets in the older section of Naples, and we wondered if this area of Pompei would have looked similar to Naples today if a Volcano hadn't erupted and buried it.
 Mt. Vesuvius....doesn't look all that intimidating.  
 Picturesque well
 I finally let someone else have the camera...more cityscapes. Below, and you can't see was a gathering area for people during intermission, before and after the entertainment from the ampitheatre. In the last years of Pompei, it's where the gladiators bunked.

 A fountain.  There were some that were working fountains with modern spigots that people could use now.

 Beautifully done and preserved mosaic
 Another mosaic
 The people of Pompei would flood the streets in order to clean them.  They placed these stepping stones periodically through the town so that people could cross. One stone for small streets, two for the larger streets, three for the main thorough fairs.  There was enough clearance and room between the stones and streets ends in order for a chariot to pass.
 One of the bath houses.  There were forty bakeries and thirty brothels in Pompei. Just in case that's ever a question on Jeopardy you can answer it, otherwise not information anyone needs to know.
 One of the bakeries

 Me with Mt. Vesuvius in the back ground. This was the entrance to one of the Forums.
 The Forum. This was Jake's expression, before we decided to bribe give them financial incentive to have a better attitude. 10$ each if they didn't complain the rest of the trip and another 10$ each if they were enthusiastic and asked thoughtful questions.  

 I'm always amazed how nature will find away, here's a small bush growing out of a ruined column.
 Top of a column from the Temple of Venus.
 The Basilica is the courthouse next to the Forum.  Churches that we call Basilicas took their floor plan from structures such as these.  I love it when I learn something new.  
 This was from a vendor. This little hole would have fire in it and they would put food in the top to keep in warm.

 One of the entrances to Pompeii   At night they would close the bigger gate (archway) and only keep the smaller one open, to help protect its citizens.  The bay of Naples actually came very close to this area during the time of Pompeii.  The guide book said you could even see some of the rings where the boats would moor. I couldn't see them though.  I didn't look really hard either.

 Another temple, can't remember to whom?
 Look, he's smiling, our incentive program is working so far.
 Next to the ampitheatre, this is where people would gather and in the last years of Pompei, the gladiators bunked.
 Jason and I thought it was interesting that they built patterns within the brick. We wondered if this was a decoration or an actual directional sign.

 Another shot of the Basilica
 Isaac hanging out on one of the 'benches' over two thousand years're not going to find that in the States.  
 Temple to Hercules and Mt. Vesuvius
 One of the things they did to increase the safety and longevity of the structure is to put the stones in a diagonal pattern.

 Leaving Pompei and back in Pozzuoli where my brother, son and his wife live. They have the middle unit in this building.  The siblings and their families of the person who owns this unit live in the one above and below.  It's a very cultural phenomenon that families live is such close proximity to each other. 

Today it's the museum. It's raining so no hiking Mt. Vesuvius for us.  Tomorrow and Friday - Rome.