Friday, December 10, 2010

Sport Parents

Oldest Kiddo and Middle Kiddo are playing basketball.  They are loving it.  This is their first time playing hoops with a team.  I've been attempting to teach them the basics since they were born so they aren't too bad.  All in all, they are having fun.

Did you catch that last part?  They are having fun!  That's what playing sports at this age is all about.  (Well, learning the basics is part of it as well, but fun is the number one priority in my opinion.)  Apparently, I am in the minority on this one.  I am continually appalled at how parents behave during games and practices.

Here's the deal.  I signed my kids up to play a sport.  I did not sign up to coach.  Therefore, I assume that the guy (or gal) that introduced himself (or herself) as Coach So-and-So has it all under control.  They don't need my help from the bleachers.  In fact, the coach will probably have better luck with my kids if I am quiet.  During practice, I am invisible.  The reality of it is that I'm only there in case my kid gets hurt.  (Don't get me wrong, I watch my kids but I do not do anything to attract their attention.)  During games, I am nothing more than a cheerleader.  If my kid does something awesome, I cheer.  Otherwise, I sit and watch the game.

I am so sick of seeing and hearing parents yelling at their kids from the stands.  I had to remind one guy last week that our kids' game was a family friendly environment so his yelling at his daughter to grab the "damned ball" was unacceptable.  It's just ridiculous.  If I were a kid of parents like that, I'd be embarrassed.  I hold my kids a pretty high standard when it comes to their behavior in public.  I've always felt that in order for them to meet that standard I have to set the example.  (Monkey see, monkey do)  

So, what do you guys think?  When did parents behaving poorly at 6 year old's games become ok?  Why do parents do this sort of stuff?  Obviously, the 5 minute "Parents you need to behave" class they make us take before allowing our kids to participate isn't working.  So, how do we stop this trend?

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

How I Plan to Gain 10 Pounds...or Brownies with Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting

After indulging in a yummy little treat at a certain coffee place recently, I decided that I could make it for cheaper at home.  (Which is just fabulous because I really need to gain an extra 10 pounds...not.)  Anyhoo, I thought other people might want to share in the yumminess so here it is...

Brownies with Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting


Whatever your favorite boxed mix is or if you are talented enough to make them at home that works too.

Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting

4 oz Cream Cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 tsp Peppermint extract
2-2 1/4 cups Powdered sugar

Using an electric mixer, cream the cream cheese and butter together.  Mix in the peppermint extract.  Slowly add in the powdered sugar a little at a time.  You absolutely must stick your finger in and taste it along the way until you get the consistency and flavor you desire.

After the brownies have cooled, spread the frosting on them.  Sprinkle with some of those cute peppermint cake sprinkles.  Enjoy!

**This recipe for the frosting made more than enough for my 8x8 pan of brownies.  It would probably be enough for a 13x9 pan as well, but if you like lots of frosting then double the recipe.

***I would have included pictures but we kinda ate them all already.  Sorry.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Crock Pot Love

I know I've been out of the loop for a while.  So, I will take a moment to remind you all of something very important about me.

I. Love. My. CrockPot.

Yep, it's probably a sickness.  If I even think I can, I make it in the CrockPot.  I've had some not-so-successful meals.  But I've had lots of really awesome stuff too.  (Plus, I'm still working on those other recipes.)  Anyways, here is my most recent triumph...

Spectacular Spaghetti Sauce

2 lb ground meat (I prefer 1 lb ground beef and 1 lb Italian sausage but use whatever makes you happy)
Large onion, chopped
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
2 cans diced tomatoes
2 (15oz) cans tomato sauce
1 can tomato paste
1 tbsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried marjoram
1 tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1.2 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
2 bay leaves

Place meat and chopped onion in a skillet over med-high heat.  Cook until meat is browned.  Mix meat and remaining ingredients in CrockPot.  Cook on low for 8-9 hours. 

This sauce is freakin' amazing.  Plus, as you can see, it makes a lot.  This actually is enough for three meals in our family.  While we are eating, I portion the remaining sauce into freezer containers and let it cool.  When the sauce is cooled, place it in the freezer to enjoy later.