My Bod, Myself

lily girl to mom

I believe women have to take care of our bodies, especially in times of stress, and that healthy food, good sleep and exercise are the best medicine.

Here are some of my personal body milestones, so far:

1.) My first period, age 11.

I was jumping around with my sisters and felt a hot rush of liquid in my underwear.

No pain the first time, just shock at seeing red blood in the bathroom.

I had already lied to the girls in 6th grade that I had gotten it before I did, for bragging rights.

I said that I was out with my family at a play and the red soaked through white jeans as onlookers gasped.

I’ve always been a little bit dramatic. Continue reading

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Momhead Video

Hey! Last night we got to have dinner with my very fabulous and funny friend Johanna Stein and her family. It was super fun.

Our kids, her daughter and my son are the same age and both love Minecraft. They’re married, now.

Remember when I got to do a little talk at the big BlogHer conference this year? Johanna was my co-speaker and things have gotten wacky with her career since then, in the best way.

Her hilarious video I’m sharing above has over 2.5 million views on YouTube already and counting.

She had already had her book published, it’s laugh out loud funny, but since then, it sold to be a TV pilot that is being produced by Will Arnett.

I’m so happy for her and she is the nicest, most humble person ever. Yay for the good guys!

Check out Johanna’s video, her adorable daughter is in it, too, and you should probably buy her brilliant book, How Not to Calm a Child on a Plane here.

XOXO-

~ Heidi

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I’m Internet Dating Houses

ferrer sign

(Photo credit: My dear friend Renée P. took this in Italy- it’s my last name, but not my house.)

I’m online dating houses to move into in Los Angeles with my family. It’s pretty funny, well it would be if there were no stress.

It feels similar to online dating for love, sex, companionship and hopefully a feeling of being home someday.

Just like regular dating, the photos you first see of the house are often not what the house really looks like in person.

Sometimes you meet the perfect guy (house) and you feel so hopeful, until you realize the house has a fatal flaw or some reason it would never work.

I’m trying to look at it as exciting! Every day a new adventure! But it’s very bizarre.

One three bedroom two bathroom townhouse rental we went to look at, in a great school district, was being shown by a young male real estate agent.

Let’s call him Douchey McRealtor.

We show up at 10:30 am on a weekday morning, our appointed time, to view the property. It’s supposed to be a one year lease that is about $4,000 per month.

As my husband and I park our car on the street, we see a woman standing in front of the house. We park, smile and approach her, thinking she must be working with the real estate company.

No, she’s there to see the house to rent, too.

Oh.

This is a little awkward, but not as awkward as when six other people arrive. We’re all standing there when D. McRealtor drives up late.

It’s some kind of a gang viewing, and no one was told. Douchey treats us like cattle and does not introduce himself to any of us personally.

Instead, he announces loudly that he will show the place now to anyone looking to lease. It turns out that two of the elderly women there are looking to buy this property, as part of the entire house.

In other words, we’re being shown a rental that might sell right out from under us while we live there.

On we go into the back part of the house, up the stairs to the townhouse.

The first thing we see upon entering the abode is a possibly dead human being, a young girl in her late teens or early 20′s, out cold on the couch.

Her arms and legs are splayed akimbo. Continue reading

Posted in A Giggle, Crazy Story, Fumbling Towards Ecstacy, WTF? | 2 Comments

Monster Collage

monster collage

A fun thing I get to do at my son’s awesome elementary school is volunteer in parent led art classes.

It was my turn to bring in a 2nd grade project idea, and this being October, I knew the kids had already painted pumpkins in a patch, done colorful Fall leaves with oil pastels and had cute bats coming up next week.

We don’t say Halloween in class because some kids don’t celebrate the holiday due to religious beliefs, but I knew that kids love to build things like robots- why not build their own fun monsters?

They could be scary or cute or both.

Collage: A piece of art made by sticking various different materials such as photographs and pieces of paper or fabric onto a backing.

What’s great about this project is that it’s open ended for individual creativity and the materials are not that messy or expensive.

All you need is different colored construction paper, glue sticks or regular glue, and some googley eyes (optional.)

bird poo googly eyes

Here’s a fun fact: Anything with googley eyes looks like a character. Even bird poo.

I also let them use their crayons if they wanted and just encouraged them to tear some of the paper (partly just because tearing paper is fun and partly for a rough edged home made look.)

They could also use round edged scissors if they so desired.

Their eyes lit up at the idea. I always like to remind them that everyone gets an A in art, they can’t do it wrong.

They had a blast and no two monsters came out alike. Some had one eye, some had six eyes, some had eyeglasses, some had wings!

Here’s to taking power and control over our own monsters, we’re stronger than they are and they’re usually imaginary anyway.

Fear feels 1,000 miles high and 1,000 miles wide, but if you prick it with a tiny pin, poof! It disappears.

False evidence appearing real, indeed.

XOXO-

~ h

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Best Roast Chicken!

perfect roast chicken

This is how to bake the most perfect roast chicken ever!

Yummy.

It’s ridiculously easy. This is my own recipe. Prep: About 10 minutes. Baking time 85-90 minutes.

I love garlic and lemon, my recipe has a lot of garlic, but you can add less, it will come out delicious either way.

If you’ve never roasted a chicken before, you simply must try it. It will fill your home with aromatic heaven.

It may save your life. Or at least feed your family full of wholesome, heartwarming and delicious food for a couple of days.

Start with a large baking dish that is deep enough and big enough to fit an average size chicken and some veggies underneath and around it.

The breast comes over very moist this way, the skin brown and crispy and it doesn’t dry out.

Ingredients:

1.) A roasting chicken, about 5-6 pounds, mine was 5.5.

I used an organic chicken from the refrigerated section that was already brined with the giblets removed.

2.) Two or more large carrots, I used two very large organic ones.

3.) Half of a very large yellow onion or a whole small to medium one.

4.) Two full bulbs garlic with the skin on. I used organic garlic- note full bulbs, not cloves.

You can alternately use a lot of cloves with the skins removed if you prefer.

5.) Two to three lemons. I used two.

6.) Three tablespoons extra virgin olive oil.

7.) Two tablespoons salted butter.

8.) Four or five small potatoes, I used organic ones.

9.) Optional seasonings: I used garlic powder and garlic salt.

I didn’t use herbs this time, I just wanted a lemony-garlic flavor, but add some fresh or dried herbs before baking if you’re in the mood.

Rosemary and Thyme are popular choices for roast chicken.

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

Wash the veggies well but don’t skin them, slice up the raw carrots into thin rounds and ditto the small raw potatoes.

Chop up the onion coarsely, removing the skin first, of course.

Wash the outside of the full garlic bulbs and just chop off the dirty hairy looking end with a good knife.

They will kind of fall apart, remove any excess skin that falls off.

In the bottom of the roasting/baking dish, toss the chopped onion, sliced carrot and potatoes (still raw) in one tablespoon of olive oil and salt and pepper if desired. I used the garlic salt (Lawry’s).

Take the chicken out of the plastic or other packaging and pour out any liquid from the cavity into the sink or garbage can.

Lay the bird on top of the veggies tossed in oil.

Wash your two or three whole lemons very well and cut them in half, removing all the seeds with a knife.

Stuff two of the lemon halves and all of the garlic inside the cavity of the bird.

Tuck the other two to four lemon halves around the sides of the bird with the veggies.

Drizzle the other two tablespoons of olive oil over the veggies and sides of the dish and over the top of the bird.

Lightly massage it over and under the chicken with your clean hands until it’s thinly coated all over with the oil.

Melt the two tablespoons of butter in a small dish (I just microwaved it) and pour it over the top of the chicken.

That will help it brown nice and crispy on the skin!

Now is the time to add your herbs or other seasoning. I just lightly sprinkled organic garlic powder and more of the garlic salt over the top of everything.

Bake the whole thing now uncovered at 425 on a center oven rack for 80-90 minutes.

Just check around 80 to make sure the skin doesn’t burn, but I cooked mine for a whole hour and a half and it was perfect.

Let it sit for 15-20 minutes if you can wait, carefully pull the baked lemons and garlic out of the cavity and squeeze the lemons all over the veggies and pan juices (gravy) and serve.

The leftovers are fab.

Enjoy.

XOXO-

~ Heidi

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Scary Mean Landlady

scary doll

Please meet my current landlady.

You know the one.

The woman who’s heartlessly evicting a young family with a child in school during the holidays.

The most wonderful time of the year.

She actually tried to enter our home with one hour’s notice at 9am this past Saturday morning with yet another of her multiple realtors and contractors.

It’s actually illegal to do that on a weekend to your tenants and we had to send her a list of California tenant’s rights, then she flipped out like a crazy baby and sent some sort of vicious emails that our neighbors were talking shizz about us.

A total, bitchy schoolgirl lie from a 60 plus year old woman.

Yikes. Continue reading

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Skinny Verde Cheesy Chicken!

skinny verde chicken

I’m on a skinny chicken thigh kick!

My new recipe is so easy, with that great green chile taste of Mexican style salsa verde and melty cheese, and you won’t believe how tender and yummy it tastes.

I made this with baked chicken thighs, but you could do it with chicken breasts or even tenders. Just adjust the cooking time.

Ingredients: (Serves 4-5)

1.) About a pound of boneless, skinless chicken thighs or boneless, skinless chicken breasts- I like to use organic when I cook at home.

2.) Store bought or homemade salsa verde.

This time I used Archer Farms thick and chunky brand Roasted Salsa Verde (mild) in a jar, from Target.

3.) Three tablespoons plain, nonfat Greek yogurt, I used Fage.

(Plus more for using as a garnish topping, if desired.)

4.) One tablespoon extra virgin olive oil.

5.) Olive oil spray or other cooking spray.

6.) About a half cup shredded white cheese, I only had organic mozzarella and it was divine.

I have no problem with mixing food cultures, but use a Mexican cheese if you prefer.

Monterey Jack, white cheddar or a mix would be yummy, too.

7.) Cumin powder, a few shakes or about a teaspoon. (If you don’t like cumin, you can leave this out.)

8.) Garlic powder, a few good shakes.

9.) Garlic salt (I like Lawry’s) or salt and pepper to taste.

10.) Optional toppings: Sliced avocado or guacamole, low fat sour cream or plain Greek yogurt, cilantro, lime, hot sauce, etc.

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Cover the top of a large baking sheet with aluminum foil. Spray the foil well with the cooking spray.

In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, the yogurt, the garlic powder and the cumin powder. Mix well with a spoon into a creamy paste.

Stretch the chicken pieces out with your hands until they are a bit flatter and lay them a few inches apart on the sprayed foil.

Using a spoon, plop a good amount of the yogurt/cumin mixture on top of each piece of chicken.

Use your fingers to rub the paste over the top and sides of the chicken until all visible chicken is lightly coated with the rub.

Lightly shake a bit of garlic salt all over the top of the chicken and put in the oven at 400.

I bake mine for exactly 35 minutes. It’s probably cooked through before that, but I like it crispy on the edges.

When the chicken is cooked to your taste, remove the pan from the oven and spoon about 3 or more tablespoons of salsa verde over each piece.

Lastly, sprinkle the shredded cheese lightly over the tops and put back in the oven.

I crank the heat to 425 for about five to ten minutes, or until the cheese is melty and lightly brown in spots.

Some cooks let chicken thighs “rest” for 5-10 minutes after baking.

To serve, use a spatula to move the chicken to plates and garnish as desired. This is yummy shredded in tacos, with salad, with warm tortillas, beans and rice or just by itself.

The meat gets so tender, it almost has the consistency of slow cooked pulled pork, if you know what I mean- yum!

Calories:

A pound of these thighs is about 520 calories.

Because some of the oil and fat burns off and stays on the aluminum foil, I would estimate the entire dish comes to about 1,000 calories with the cheese and salsa, before the optional toppings.

So each serving, depending on size, would be roughly about 250 calories each.

Enjoy and “Like” Skinny Mama Meals on Facebook for more recipes and weight loss inspiration.

XOXO-

~ Heidi

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