Saturday, October 24, 2015

The Jell-o Project: Orange Fluff

For Brian's Back to the Future themed birthday dinner party, I decided that Jell-o needed a place at the table. But not molded Jell-o or cut and serve Jell-o. I wanted a Jell-o salad that you could scoop, and that would go well with pizza.

Whether or not it went well with pizza is still up for debate, but Orange Fluff Jell-o Salad was another, too-good-to-be-healthy "salad." And it probably isn't healthy, but I made it anyway.

The recipe made a LOT of orange fluff. I should have known this would be the case when I saw it called for a full pound of Cool Whip. That's a lot of Cool Whip. I brought the salad to the party and it didn't even disappear by half!

So I brought it home for the kids.

The feedback was typical.

Jonah grabbed a bowl and used it to scoop orange fluff, so that the side of the bowl was covered in fluff. It was a mess. "I didn't want to dirty a spoon," he said. I pointed out he could have used the spoon he was currently eating with. "Oh yeah," he said.

Jonah loved it.

Isaac was leery. There is fruit in it, after all. Not just fruit, but nasty black bananas that look lovely on the day you make it, and horribly unappetizing the next. I should have skipped the bananas. He had about two bites and said it tasted fine, but that was all he wanted.

Ethan? Who knows if he's had any. Probably not.

Robert? I don't think so.

I've had several servings and think it is great. Not something I'd want more than occasionally, but certainly not bad. I think calling it a fruit salad is a stretch. Vanilla pudding, orange Jell-0, 16 oz. of Cool Whip, marshmallows and then a little canned fruit.

It's totally dessert.

Which is why I don't know why more people don't eat it for dinner. If this passes as a salad, why would you not eat it.

"Yeah, I had a big salad for dinner tonight," sounds so much better than, "I had a big bowl of pudding and marshmallows for dinner tonight." If you can get away with that kind of subtle trickery, why wouldn't you?

Monday, October 19, 2015

Lost Retainer: REWARD!

You know how sometimes kids lose things*? 

Also, you know how those things are sometimes soul-crushingly embarrassing to admit you own, and therefore almost impossible to talk about resulting in a lowered probability of ever, ever finding them?

Finally, there is a solution: The ambiguous LOST flyer. 

No one has to know. Identities are not disclosed. You don't even really need to bring the humiliated teen's name up at all. Just print 400 of these beauties up, plaster them all over town, and preserve the dignity of your ungrateful teen. 

*Posting for a friend.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

4am on Shaw Island

I woke at 4am thinking of Shaw Island.

How wonderful it would be to sequester myself in a little home on this tiny island in the Washington State San Juans and just write, undisturbed, probably with a view of the sea. I would take walks every few hours to break up my writing day, but mostly I would write.

There would be no one to ask me to fix their watch. No one would say, "what are you having for lunch, and can you make me one." There would be no fights over the yellow highlighter to referee.

With only 240 year-round residents (many of which are nuns and monks) the chances of running into another person on this 7-square mile island would be rare. The general store even closes down for the season in October. Distractions would be virtually nonexistent.

I started to make plans in my head for getting to Shaw Island.

Then I realized that 4am in our home might as well be Shaw. Except for the water view, it is quiet and undisturbed. I should be able to write for several hours without so much as a "make me breakfast!" And once I'm in my head, it doesn't really matter where I'm sitting.

So why not get up now, and write on my imaginary Shaw Island?

I snuggled a little father down under the covers.

It's hard to get out of bed at 4am.