Cheerio, pip pip, Paula Deen.

Okay, so Monday’s episode of Oprah featured Paula Deen. {Work-at-home bonus — Oprah at 2.} You know, the grandmotherly, southernly, twangity twang twang recipe-maker, cook extraordinaire? Which, considering I can count the number of times I use the oven each year on one hand, normally wouldn’t interest me in the least.

And then she started making this evil butter, sausage and egg soaked hashbrown casserole.

Forget that it’s PURE FAT and sickenly high in cholesterol. Paula, you had me at hello. {And THAT, my friends, is nothing short of a miracle.}

So, I cooked it. I cooked it with gusto. I cooked it with a fierce southern accent. And by this, I DO mean I talked — narrated, in fact — as I whisked and sauteed and chopped and fried. Had anyone come in unannounced, they’d surely assume I was completely insane. The dog was thoroughly confused.

I don’t know what it is, but there’s something downright infectious about a southern drawl. Same deal with an English accent. And EVERY time I talk to someone with either accent, within 10 minutes, I become Madonna. Which totally sounds like I’m mocking and usually ends with me excusing myself for one reason or another before I humiliate myself beyond repair.

I digress.

Anyhoo, here it is — MY finished dish.

Not as PURTY, but it turned out pretty darn good if I do say so myself. I expect to wake up 2 lbs heavier.

Cheerio, pip pip, y’all.

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Filed under Piece of Country

Look who made USA TODAY.

Yep.

True story. Yesterday, Swap Mamas made USA TODAY! (Holy awkward sentence.) A day later and I’m STILL geeking out.

Yippeeee! Check it out HERE.

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Filed under News Piece

MPs POV

MP grabbed the camera the other day morning and while I showered … er, put on a hat … and got ready … threw on a sweatshirt … she took photos. She then asked if she could take the camera with her in the car on the way to school.

I like to call this MPs POV.

Yes, those ARE  both her feet. She has a pair of red boots. She has a pair of green boots. She likes to wear one of each. Wanna guess what her favorite holiday is?

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Filed under Art Piece

Eye-poppin’ country tunes

Tonight a commercial for the Jeff Bridges movie Crazy Heart came on. (Totally want to see, btw.)

There was singing. It was, of course, country.

And like a dog howling uncontrollably in response to a passing ambulance, MP broke out into an exaggerated tune of her own, emphasizing just the right amount of twang.

There used to be a woah-man

That I loved

But she hated me

And popped my eye out

Now I have one.

I was laughing too hard to write down the lyrics to the next song, but I CAN report, it involved two boys in love who couldn’t get married because it was against the law.

Oh, and sidenote? Tonight, for the first time, she asked where babies came from. Which took me completely off guard, but by the time “Weeelll …” came out of my mouth, she’d forgotten her question and was on to something else.

Lawdy.

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Filed under Piece of Country

The cheese stands alone.

Dress-up has always been one of MP’s “things.” Super Heroes have been popular at the Pie House too.

Just yesterday, she insisted as going to school as a ninja.

That net on her head? Yeah, that would be from the Easter ham.

I suggested her superhero name be Ham Head. Her sidekick could be Super Cheese. I’m told the yellow bolts emerging from Super Cheese’s head represent his super power, Stink. It makes the bad guys run away.

Super Cow would, of course, be a logical member of the posse, rounding out the Dairy Squad nicely.

Ham Head, Super Cheese and Super Cow should have no problem kicking these guys’ butts.

MP’s asleep, or I’d ask just WHAT/WHO these guys are. I have it narrowed down to either the Three [Badass] Blind Mice, which would go nicely with the cheese theme — or my unemployed friends down at The Cannery Bar.

Stay tuned.

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Filed under At Piece with Yourself

What the Easter Bunny does when it snows.

The day before Easter, it snowed. All day.

Traditionally, the egg hunt is always chilly … snow, however, is a different (and new) issue altogether. So when MP started asking — with more than a touch of concern — how the Easter Bunny would hide eggs, my answer was, he just hid ‘em in the house. Like Santa.

By late afternoon the snow stopped, and began to melt fairly rapidly. Together, MP and I  checked the forecast online. It didn’t look good. We did the only thing we could do — we played it by ear, and held out hope that Mama Nature would cooperate.

By nightfall, MP was tucked in all snug in her bed, while visions of jelly beans danced in her head.

By 10:30, although a quick check proved most of the snow had melted, the forecast predicted a high of 23 degrees at 9 a.m. A high of 23 … but it would feel like 15. It was clear that Peter Rabbit would be making the rounds INDOORS this year.

It didn’t seem to matter to MP. An egg hunt was an egg hunt. And when she got his message painted on a plastic egg, bright and early at 6:00 a.m. (ugh) … it was on.

And then I remembered the eggs.

The eggs that had so carefully been colored two nights before.

The eggs that were still sitting IN THE REFRIGERATOR.

My heart sank. A quick and sickening wave of panic came over me and settled in the pit of my stomach.

It’s really not as bad as it sounds … there were 25 PLASTIC eggs filled with candy hidden around the house. But I had promised MP I wouldn’t forget to leave the real eggs out. And I did.

About 10 minutes into the hunt, I told her the news. She took it well. She took it incredibly well, and reassured me it was okay … they would’ve gone bad and gotten stinky if we’d left them out all night anyway. (Have I said how much I love this kid?) I said if it warmed up, we could have our own outdoor hunt with the real eggs later.

As luck would have it, Mama Nature showed us a little smile, and, later that afternoon, while MP waited inside Grammy and Poppy’s house, I hid two dozen REAL eggs around the property.

Since this year was all about improvisation, I thought I’d try something new. Instead of a straight up, regular old egg hunt, I took photos of the egg locations, printed them out, and handed them to MP as clues.

She said it was better than the Easter Bunny.

And quickly changed her mind.

But said it WAS pretty great.

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Filed under Holiday Piece

April Foolery

The delight MP took in April Fool’s Day this year has me smiling from ear to ear.

She started a day early, without warning, telling me I had a spider in my ear. She was so convincing, I nearly jumped out of my skin. Later, she spent the night telling me all the jokes she was going to play on her friends. The kid could barely contain herself.

Fast forward 12 hours to early this morning. I awake to the sound of her running to the bathroom.

“MOOOOOOOOMMMMM!”

“What.” Eyes closed. Dazed.

“I HAD AN ACCIDENT!”

“What??” Eyes open. Half awake.

“I POOPED IN MY UNDERWEAR!!”

Heavy sigh. Awake.

Dragging myself out of bed, I find MP sitting on the potty. Smiling.

“APRIL FOOL’S!!! Heheheheheh”

Turd.

Forty minutes later, she emerged from her room, dressed and ready to go to school. The best part of the outfit? The Gem Show “Dealer” badge and blue ribbon combo — a remnant of the rock show with Bobo last year at the fairgrounds. I hadn’t seen the thing since the day of the show.

“Oh. You’re going to wear the badge today?”

“Mmm hmmm. It’s an April Fool’s! Everyone will think I’m going to a science fair! Heheheheh.”

Rock that Geek Style, Girlfriend.

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Filed under Piecing it Together