My Cooking

F: is for Family And Food

Meatballs Marinara

The question: Can I cook? Depends on who you ask. I have a limited amount of things that I can cook well but they are not difficult or gourmet by anyone’s standards. The things I do cook or bake are very GOOD. I can make a lovely roast chicken with herbs and lemon, or a brisket (as good as my mom’s,) home-made macaroni and cheese, an old fashioned meatloaf, a fabulous pea soup with tender morsels of carefully chopped up honey ham or Canadian bacon, chicken soup, baked ziti, Nonna’s meatballs, a home-made tomato sauce learned from Ba, and I bake an awesome banana bread with raisins and chocolate chips. Not a chef by any means but a simple, home cooking mom that likes to cook with music playing in the background. Nothing complicated, simple, fresh, and easy. Come on over, we share.

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The Celebrity Apprentice

aboard the Kandy Kruise 09/14/2007

Image via Wikipedia

I haven’t watched The Apprentice in a couple of years. For some reason, this year I stumbled on The Celebrity Apprentice but realized that I missed the first show. I don’t know why I love The Celebrity Apprentice, but I do; I find it hilarious and fascinating. The next day I watched it on Hulu (Thank you Hulu) and I was delighted to be able to watch the first episode. It’s my guilty pleasure. I’m not sure why I am so tickled about the show but I will say this: THE CELEBRITIES!  They make me laugh and groan and truly get the audience involved. Good hiring, Mr. Trump! Here are just some of the celebrities that were on the show: Goodbye Diane Warwick (serious attitude), Hello Neenie (serious spunk). LaToya Jackson (really, not sure what to say or maybe I just can’t hear her) Star Jones (Really wouldn’t want to be on HER bad side, she scares me.) This season you have to admit the cast ENGAGES you.

I might have rewatch the Gary Bussey and Meatloaf episodes again. Just seeing Meatloaf in the boardroom trying to hold himself together without completely losing it should win him an Academy Award or any type of award. Gary Bussey? (HA HA HA HA) The man might be a genius(?) but I’m sorry to say I really don’t think he has all his coffee cups in the cupboardt. I’m not judging, I’m just saying. It did, however, make for excellent television viewing.  What will I do now that he has been fired? I will still watch but I guess I will have to focus more of my attention on  Star Jones and Neenie confrontations. Don’t you think? There’s the pretty Playmate of the year ( I think), a country singer named John (Rich?) a rap star named Lil John and maybe a couple of more people, not really sure.

I love Donald Trump (this does not mean an endorsement for President however) and the way Ivanka and Don Jr. play this game. I feel that Eric is not as comfortable as his siblings. How perfect and beautiful is Ivanka anyway? I don’t care what she says which is not much but often on target she is just pretty to watch. Don Jr. makes me laugh because you kind of get a sense that he is having a little fun with all this and doesn’t take it quite so seriously.

There’s just one question that I have for the show. If people are debating about lying and who said what, why can’t they go back to the tape and say “Gee Gary, it did look like you were strong arming the head of the company and offering them your services as a spokesperson?”  Wouldn’t that make more sense? Is it just to see how people view their own actions and how their memories are so different? Couldn’t you see The Donald pausing and going: “let’s go to the tape now” pointer in hand?

When our kids were little The Apprentice was a show we all watched together. We were glued to the tv set for every episode. Now, it’s my dirty little secret. Last week, the Meatloaf/Bussey debacle was on and I was laughing out loud. I thought I was alone until my sixteen year old daughter walked in the room while I was watching, turned to look at me, rolled her eyes as only 16 year olds can do and said, with contempt:  “I’m judging you.” Go ahead, sweetheart, judge away. I wouldn’t have missed Meatloaf and Gary Bussey for the world. I just hope The Celebrity Apprentice will hold my attention until the end. Oh, who am I kidding, of course it will. Thanks, Donald, for a great season, and if you run for President, may I suggest Gary Bussey as your VP?

…Because That’s Why They Have Xanax

Nanny McPhee and the big bang - Emma Thompson

Image by WorthingTheatres via Flickr

It’s all Jonathan’s fault.  No seriously. This dude (NOT my nephew Jonathan) called my Aunt at 10:35 last night pretending he has searched for her because he has always loved her. Romantic? Not so much. He knew her name and of course, instead of just hanging up on him, she engaged him. (‘Auntie Joan, its not the 60’s anymore.’) Afterwards, she freaked out  and kept the phone in her bed and ever since then weird things have happened in MY home. Lights are buzzing mysteriously, the oven is playing drums while it is baking Ghiradelli chocolate brownies and my daughter’s confident voice sounds timid like a sleepy mouse with slippers.  Something is going on and I am not sure what it is. I admit it, the brownies are frightening me and the washing machine is terribly noisy with a beat like swish-swish, a-swish, yes, you heard me, swish-swish, a-swish. It’s as if the dirty laundry is sneezing it’s resentment straight through the walls and into my agitated shell-like ear drums.

I am trying to breathe deeply but it is not working. I look for toothpicks and come up with a cow bell; I am trying to act like a grown-up but I am spooked.  Sure, I could reach for the anti-anxiety pills but this is too disturbing for even that. I’m too anxious to take an anti-anxiety pill.  Do I sound vaguely like Charlie Sheen?  I feel sorry for him in one way because I really do think he needs help although he could just be a friggin’ genius putting us all to shame and running to the bank with buckets of dough. Neither option is good. “Charlie, get some help and don’t even think of doing a reality tv show.”

I watched   “Nanny McPhee” today and I do think they need a warning label for adults. First, did they not realize that it is a plain rip off from both “Mary Poppins” and “The Sound of Music” intertwined with LSD or perhaps some crack cocaine? That movie, for scary pups like me, should not be watched alone. (Do you hear that Tammy Lou?!)

Thank goodness the Ghiradelli brownies are done so I can escape the scary kitchen and go upstairs to hide. The FedEx guy just appeared like a shadow until my dog started barking furiously as if there was an imminent threat. Am I watching too much TV? I’m not talking comedy shows like the impeccable “Modern Family” or the lovely, realistic show “Parenthood” not even “The Celebrity Apprentice.” (Wait, did I hear something about Donald Trump wanting to run for President or was it another victim of my overworked and anxious mind?) I did see a flash of the news today, the real news and even watching it for two minutes made it leech into my brain and stay there giving “fear” company for “anxiety.”

I should practice the art of meditation. Do I really need to learn how to meditate? I mean do I actually need to pay money (at this point I think there’s no denying it) to teach me to cross my legs and breathe deeply, in and out, in and out, exuding calmness and harmony? Shouldn’t breathing be a natural process? I can make up my own “mantra.” Thank you.

I am trying to calm down, I shouldn’t watch those “scary” movies all alone at my ripe old age of 54. Next time I want to be scared silly, I will order “Nanny McPhee Returns” ( I actually can’t wait) from Netflix and take half a Xanax beforehand. We live in an insane world, how could we possibly feel sane all the time? It doesn’t work; I’m the example. Tonight I will eat calming foods, such as: the meatloaf I made yesterday drowned in ketchup, rice with butter and salt, and mango peach applesauce. I’ll be fine after that, I hope.