Wednesday, November 28, 2012

An Open Letter to Rice Elementary School

Nov. 28, 2012

Dear Faculty and Staff of Rice Elementary,

Please stop reminding me that my child, my son, my firstborn, is about to go to middle school.

I am well aware of this.

I was aware when we visited Moore Middle School for preview night that the sixth grade is hurtling at me at a rate I'm not prepared for.

I was aware when Curt told me, months ago, that he gets to go to Camp Tyler, for TWO OVERNIGHTS, on the fifth grade trip this spring.

I was aware when I checked the calendar for the Moore MST magnet program application dates.

And I was aware this morning when you oh-so-kindly reminded me that today's 5th grade program was the LAST TIME they'd perform until GRADUATION.

For the record, I have bad allergies; those were not tears I was trying to wipe away.

Thank you, very much, Rice Elementary, for the constant reminder that my BABY is growing up.

Thank you for preparing him to leave elementary school and for giving him the confidence he needed to navigate the buildings at Moore Middle School (without me). Thank you for helping him mature enough so that he doesn't need to hold my hand when he walks into school in the morning. And thank you very DARN MUCH for helping him get to where he needs almost NO accommodations, functions at a high level academically and behaviorally, and enjoys going to Tech  Club with other kids.

Just please stop reminding me that fifth grade is almost half over.


Ms. Fingers In My Ears I Can't Hear You LALALALALALALA

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Garlic Shrimp, Sausage and White Beans = Delicious

I haven't blogged in forever, largely because my son HOGS the computer his EVERY. WAKING. SECOND. and I'm not awake many more hours than he is these days.

Plus, work keeps me so busy and in front of a computer 9 or 10 hours a day so I don't really want or need any more screen time when I get home.

But a recent dinner was worth dusting off the ol' blog and getting back into the swing of things (that, and I have the morning off and Curt is at school!!!)

This simple dinner is quick, delicious, easy and speaks for itself!

Garlic Shrimp, Sausage and White Beans


3 T olive oil, divided
3 garlic cloves, minced, divided
2 dried chiles de arbol
1 bay leaf, preferably fresh
1 1/4 cups chopped tomato
kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
1 T tomato paste
2 15-ounce cans cannellini beans, drained
1 cup low-sodium chicken stock
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled, deveined
12 ounces beef link sausage, sliced
1 t smoked paprika
2 T chopped flat leaf parsley
grilled bread (optional)

Preheat broiler.

Heat 2 T olive oil in an heavy oven proof skillet (cast iron works well!). Add one clove garlic, chiles and bay leaf and cook, stirring constantly, 1-2 minutes. Add tomato, season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring and smashing tomato with the back of a wooden spoon,  until tomato is broken down, about 5 minutes.

Add tomato paste and cook, stirring constantly, until paste is deep red and caramelized, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in beans, broth and sausage. Bring to a brisk simmer and cook until juices are slightly reduced and thickened, 3-4 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Combine remaining garlic, olive oil, shrimp and paprika in a medium bowl. Toss to coast. Scatter shrimp over beans in an even layer.

Broil until shrimp are golden and cooked through, about 3 minutes. Garnish with parsley and serve with bread.