Sunday, November 29, 2009

Holiday Hangover

Once the turkey hangover passes, that wonderful feeling of relief washes over me. Can you hear my happy sighing through your computer screen? Ahhhhhh. It's the sigh of relief indicating that my cooking and entertaining responsibilities for 2009 are officially over. I'm coasting for the rest of the year!

If you celebrated, I hope your Thanksgiving was great and I hope you're all energized for the next round of partying in December. I, personally, am still working on the "getting energized" part.

Do you know the wonderful Cinner at Things About Who, What, When, Where, Why? She has a beautiful blog, a great attitude and is a delight to spend time with. Please check her out. Cinner recently passed this nice award onto me.

The idea behind the award is to list 10 fun things about yourself, and then forward it to 10 of your favorite blogs. I'm not sure how "fun" my ten things are but here goes....

1) The pool and deck are still in the back yard. Phew! But they have not magically stabilized either. I've spent months working with contractors and engineers combing over blueprints and reports and well, my head hurts at the massive job ahead. We're close to making a final "plan" and decisions on what to do. In the meantime, I'm wearing garlic around my neck, burning sage and looking for an Exorcist so things don't get any worse.

2) Beloved's grand daughter "The Precious One" came home from the opposite coast for the first time since she started college. What a difference three months makes. She was always a poised and sweet girl but now she's a mature young woman-- And she took our breath away. There's no turning back now. She's not a kid anymore. When did that happen?

3) Big Sister called me early Thanksgiving morning to tell me about a muffin that's better than sex. I must admit, she peaked my interest with that one. And she was right! Here's the recipe for "Great Sex Muffins"-- (Get your mind out of the gutter, this is not an R-rated recipe.) The next time you make stuffing, make it a little extra moist with broth or stock. Use an ungreased muffin pan (without the paper liners). Form large "meatballs" out of the stuffing (don't pack together too tightly) and place in the center of each muffin cup. Place a small dab of butter on top of each muffin. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20-30 minutes. Let cool a few minutes, then remove from pan. Prepare yourself for "the scene" from When Harry Met Sally. Eat muffin and enjoy! It's the muffin equivalent of the "crispy on the top, moist the middle" part of the stuffing. I hope it's as good for you as it is for me.

4) Thank gawd the possible pumpkin shortage for Thanksgiving did not hit Los Angeles. I'm guessing pumpkin growers or the likes started that cruel rumor to maximize sales of pumpkin pie. And let me tell you-- It worked! I ran out and bought pumpkin pies three days in a row and I have the extra pounds on my hips to prove it.

5) Nearby Beverly Hills hung their new holiday banners from streetlights. Each picture is a different banner. They look like this.
It's happy and bright and upscale but it kind of makes me feel like I need to dress up to shop there.

6) On the other hand, Target has a new campaign to "sell Christmas". This commercial cracks me up.

7) My holiday shopping list usually has 37 names on it. But this year, my list is only 18 names long. As a sign of the times, and perhaps a touch of holiday humbug combined with a total dislike for shopping, my Ohio family has decided we'll draw names this year. The thought makes me kind of sad for the nieces and nephews (who are ages 15-27) but happy not to empty the wallet this season. How big is your shopping list?

8) Godson has been pushing me to get a dog for years-- You know, because "Beloved needs one". Well, that is not going to happen and I've told him so for the last eight years that he's been "hinting". But, my folks in Ohio just got a new puppy (Noah's on the left) and now he's strongly hinting that we need to go to Ohio over his Christmas vacation to "walk the dog for his God-grandparents-- because they're old and it's cold there". Godson forgets that I know all to well how cold it gets in Ohio which is a big reason why I now live in the Golden State. And FYI--Godson and I go to Ohio "for snow" every other year. Last year we stayed two extra days due to a blizzard that shut the airport down. We're staying in Los Angeles this winter-- where it's snow-free, but I can't blame a guy for trying.

9) If I'm in a carb coma from all the Thanksgiving food I've consumed, why isn't Beloved in a football coma from all the football he watched?

10) The Monday after Thanksgiving ritual continues-- No more carbs, no bah humbug this year, no living in fleece and turtlenecks for the next five months-- it is Southern California, after all, and-- I am going to find my Blog Mojo if it's the last thing I do! Thanks for hanging in there with me while I search for it.

As for the ten blogs I'm supposed to pass this award onto-- I pick you and you and you and you..... Sorry, picking is too much pressure. If this interests you, please, by all means grab the award and run with it. Or you can...

...tell me one fun thing about yourself!
Welcome to The Fifty Factor - Joanna


  1. the turkey coma I was in, wore off just in time for me to fall back into one while celebrating my hubby's birthday tonight....

    amazing that I can even type this....

    and only one funny thing about myself when there are so many....

    well, I love chocolate and I love peanut butter, but I won't ever eat the two together....ever !

  2. I've heard about this so called pumpkin shortage, but I haven't seen or heard anything to indicate that people can't get pumpkin.

  3. pumpkin shortage? who knew!

    those muffins sound scrumtious...

  4. Great list of 10 things...the next time I make stuffing I will have to try making these muffins...I am sure they are not better then we will

    I am NOT a shopper. I am hoping to do most of my shopping on line to save on having to ship to my children and grandchildren. For the most part we keep things pretty simple and don't buy a lot. We don't exchange gifts with my family or my husbands family and since I have enough children and grandchildren that's a good thing!

  5. As part of my annual Thanksgiving tradition, I ate too much. Enough said about that.

    My youngest daughter just started her college courses. Where does the time go?

    I'm not one for baking, unless it's the eating part. I'll pass this recipe onto my wife. If I hear her moaning in the kitchen, I'll think of you.

    I saw Christmas decorations even before Halloween. What's up with that?

    My shopping list is the same, except that they're getting less, and it's coming from online. And no puppies.

    Congratulations on being recognized. You deserve it.

  6. Congrats on the award!
    The target commercial is a riot.
    2 names on my Christmas list:
    My Secret Santa

    word ver. donke where's the y?

  7. Hmmmm, this was really a great list, now to think of something to tell... Ah, I will soon be in a pink tree hangover with my little one. Yes, her Christmas tree is as oink as cotton candy!

  8. Congrats on award and what sounds like a successful Turkey day! Love those Target ads can't wait for our trip home I really miss Target!! Have a wonderful week.

  9. One thing about myself... I can get fairly creative with my cursing.

    Happy carb hangover...we went to friend's for a potluck. I only had to bring two dishes ; -)))))

  10. Glad to learn more about you. now those muffins, they sound scrumptious. Thanks for the kinds words about me! Take care my friend.Thanks for always poppin by my little blogs. and congratulation on your 300 followers, how exciting for you. whoo hoo!

  11. Sex muffins? You had me there... oh - and a warm Christmas is nice. Otherwise I say: Let it snow!

  12. Darlin you've got big blog mojo going on here! Your writing never fails to cheer me....thank

  13. Woot!! Congrats on your award!! Loved hearing more about you!!!! And I am in agreement with all the others. Those muffins sound divine. I will definitely give them a try. And hey, I have a "oink" tree for my bedroom...what's wrong with that? LOL!! The black on is in my living room!!!!! With black, white and silver ornies. No very traditional; but fun all the same!

  14. Congrats on the award!
    I heard about the pumpkin shortage and couldn't find any around here for a while, but it's back.
    The muffins sounds divine!

  15. Congratulations on your award! You deserve EVERY award, but you already knew I thought that. Have you ever considered a slideshow of them or, perhaps a link to a secondary page that lists them? How am I to know which ones to give you?

    Thanks for the When Harry Met Sally clip. She was brilliant, wasn't she?

    Beverly Hills is all to sleek and fancy for me. Those holiday banners are a true representation of how I picture the whole place. I'm just a small town girl, livin' in a lonely world....

    I am totally in love with Noah...who would fit in fine here in our Petting Zoo/Ark.

  16. I pared my list way back this year. I have a love/hate with shopping. I love buying things I really think people will love. I hate buying things out of obligation.

  17. I have heard "rumors" about those muffins and now I must try them...the video visual only makes it better :)

    This is a great list---love the banners adorning the light poles although they do say "no sweat pant shopping allowed" :)

  18. Nice to learn more things about your Joanna. Congratulations on the awards and good luck with the low carb this week. I'm trying it too.

  19. No missing Mojo where you sit from what I can see. That Target lady is starting to be a little irritating to me, but I'm sure we'll keep seeing her. Thanks to Cinner for giving you an award that prompted this fun information sharing.

  20. First, congrats on the much deserved award.
    Second, thanks for posting your 10 fun things for all of us to share and they were great ones too!
    Third, glad to hear your pool and deck may be saved!

  21. Until I read the Sexy Muffin recipe I was going to toss out the extra stuffing. Now I am going to have one for breakfast! (It is almost 5:30 am as I type this comment) Thanks for sharing!

    Also, I intensely dislike those Target commercials. Very obnoxious.

  22. What a fun list! I shop for only 12 or so peeps! Glad your pool and deck are still hanging on!

  23. Awesome! Congratulations!I think you should put your new award next to the tiaras.

    When I was in NYC last (September 2008), my sisters and I ate at Katz's deli where the famous scene from When Harry Met Sally was filmed. We sat at the table right next to "the" table. There's a sign overhead that points to it, just in case you wanted to sit there, which you never can because, well, it's famous and have you ever been to Katz's? It's standing room only, so to get any table is a good piece of luck. Anyway, Mr. Katz himself came over and sat in my lap for a photo. I was a little heftier back then so it was kind of funny.

    I'll be going back to NYC next December with my husband, sisters, and their husbands. You should definitely fly up and meet us. We'll meet you at Katz's for a nice Pastrami and Corned Beef on Rye!

  24. Very intresting & fun!!,.. now why won't you get a doggie????

  25. lol. loved the list...and secretly i am having a hard time being ready for it to be chrstmas yet...yikes.

    fun tongue is long enough to reach over the tip of my nose...or on really hungry days...yikes!

  26. Oooh....I'll have to give those muffins a try! :-)

  27. Good goin' JJ!

    One sorta fun fact about me is that I love liver and pickled pork hocks. When I was a kid, for supper we often had fried potatoes, pork & beans and some protein to share--a can of sardines, a jar of pickled herring, liver or pork hocks. I acquired a taste for that stuff and still enjoy it.

  28. SO pleased to hear your pool & deck are getting fixed! I laughed at that commercial, despite my attempts to downsize Christmas to peace and goodwill instead of stuffing and presents. Our list is at an all-time low, our charitable giving at an all-time high. This pleases me.

  29. I love your list and those BH holiday signs are fun! We're unfortunately having to skip presents altogether this year but we're enjoying the season for what it is about and loving it! :D

    A fun thing about me...hmmm...I auditioned for The New Mickey Mouse Club when I was in the 8th grade. did I ever tell you that? lol

    Have a great day!

  30. Great list!

    I have 13 people on my list. We're working on "experiences" (a trip to the aquarium, etc.) instead of stuff.

    We'll see how it goes.

  31. Congrats and that was a great post.

    I was terrified of Mr. Potato Head as a child.
    The first viewing of Toy Story was done with some trepidation. I'm okay.

  32., long and fun post...what a great worker you are!
    those 10 fun things about are really amusingly....(mhhh, I just invented a new engl.word..?)

    see you! ciao elvira

  33. Congratulations!
    One thing about myself....
    I've never had a sex muffin but I think I need one (or more)!


  34. The muffins sound wonderful and your list was great!!

  35. I love those Target commercials -- playing to both groups of shoppers: the Black Friday early birds and people like me who shop as little as possible that weekend.

    Fun fact (or possiby a gross fact): I'm "double-jointed" in my elbows so I can roll the outside of my elbows in. It is good for freaking people out, bad for trying to do push-ups.

  36. Omg, that meg Ryan clip is hilarious. However, now that I've seen it, I'll never believe anybody again, thereby ruining my sex life, such as it is, forever. Thanks a heap, Joanna! :-D

  37. Loved reading your 10 things!!
    My Christmas list is about the same!!
    Too full and tired to think of anything fun about me...

  38. I am in a little bit of a funk myself...

    I am glad that your deck and pool are still there! That must be a really annoying situation having to worry about that.

    I hate watching that scene where Meg Ryan fakes an orgasm, it always makes me want to want to go fake one! hahaha!

    I didn't eat hardly anything for Thanksgiving.

  39. hahaha I can certainly relate! U r very funny!

  40. I ADORE those Target commercials!

    I actually look forward to them.

    I know...I've lost my mind. LOL

  41. My turkey coma had me down for two days. Why is it that leftover turkey doesn't have the same effect? Maybe it's the wine I started drinking at noon?

    The puppy is adorable and you should certainly go and walk him with your son. What a nice kid.

  42. Sadly, I cannot think of 10 fun things about me!
    I am glad you had a great Thanksgiving... so... are you not in charge of cooking/entertaining over Christmas then?
    That little dog is gorgeous, how can you not want one???
    WE never get snow here at Christmas time ... NEVER.
    I would love to have a white christmas once in my life!

  43. I have a surprise for you at

  44. just wondering - do I get credit for alerting you to the "pumpkin panic of 2009".
    the muffin sex (no that's not how you worded it but you know what I'm talking about) - since most of sex is in your head anyway, this makes sense to me but I don't think it will convince anyone under 30.

  45. That muffin idea is just brilliant I tell you. Brilliant! I'm going to make those for my husband.

  46. love it! that muffin does sound like it´s to die for:) p.s. the signs were hanging because there is a puppet fair every year in tolosa. besos!

  47. Glad your Thanksgiving went well! Ours did too, and I am now trying to atone for all the pineapple cake and pie I ate for dessert. Now it's tuna, arugula salad, and cottage cheese for the rest of the week, or maybe until Christmas... Was good to be with the family all at once again!

    I love your 10 points, including the commercial you listed.

  48. Ok ya know how on the Quilting Bee yesterday I was talking about folks who make me blow coffee out through my nose first thing in the morning...uhmmm giggle, snort..yup is you whahahahaha...loved this!! Girl ya crack me up:) You also touch my heart you do!! Here are a dozen virtual - no carb donuts from my cabin:)enjoy!
    As for me I adore the snow..too many years in So.Cal and AZ...I will enjoy some for you! Here is to lots of what Meg Ryan has for the season..whoot!! Hugs, Sarah

  49. I would love a dog, but not the responsibility. Instead we have rent-a-dog which is - we borrow husband's son's dog when we go on country walks. All the fun, non of the vet bills!
    Looks like you are doing fine with the blog mojo to me! Keep up the good work!
    P.S. what is difilika???

  50. I'm in a carb coma as well and it's not feeling good.

    I really love the shopping banners in LA, so colorful and bright and such a good way of scaring off those of us who don't have any money. ;)

  51. So, no dog, no football, no carbs, no turkey, no pumpkin, no long gift list, no cold, no fleece, no picking names?

    Did I get them all right?! LOL

    That Target woman? Holy Gawd, she scares the crap out of me!

    But, I love you....regardless.

  52. Wasn't LA beautiful this Thanksgiving. Spent the holiday in Hollywood Hills at sis-in-laws home. Disney the day after where it was actually a little cool out. First time ever at Disney without baking to death in the long lines! We ate pumpkin pie for dinner a couple of nights in November. The kids worshiped me afterwards...which made it all worth it. Afterall...they ate all veggies for dinner those nights...right?! Holly

  53. Fun thing? Me? Um... I'm almost wearing a pair of socks. I bought two pairs of socks with the same bunny design on them but in different colours. My dog ate one from each pair. They were brand new, so I've stubbornly been wearing my almost a pair every since.

    They've kind of become my favourite pair for reasons I can't fathom.

  54. Hi Joanna
    I still love that scene from When Harry Met Sally....always cracks me up!!

    One fun thing about myself....I LOVE laughing out loud and dancing in the rain and singing at the top of my voice in the car.

    Thanks for your comment over at my blog, I will try and pop over here more often.

    Take care

  55. Muffins better than sex? Anything is better than sex for me, these day, Joanna. Can you believe I am having more fun not having sex. Yippeeeeeee!

  56. Great insight with the 'fun' things :) Glad to hear that you can put your feet up for the rest of the year now and enjoy good food and drink and other people's expense lol.
    One fun thing about me? Hmm...I like to flirt and I'm pretty good at it too :D

  57. Oh those stuffing muffins sound delicious!!!

  58. This news about the muffins is disturbing. One hates the idea of becoming addicted to a mere muffin.


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