Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Confession -- Happy Blogiversary To ME!

February 2nd came and went without much fanfare but, inside my neurotic little brain, I was doing a Spartan cheer for my blog's anniversary!

I started this blog two years ago but took a whole year off of writing. Let's just say I was going through a buttload of crappy life stuff that just inhibited my funny juices. (That was a really vile sentence.) 

At the time I started feeling real guilt for not writing regularly. When I told my therapist about the shame and inner turmoil, she practically laughed at me. "How can you feel like a failure for not writing a blog?" Tip of the iceberg, lady.

But, anyway, I took a nice blog-cation. And life got better, as it often does. 

So now I want to celebrate the 12 full months of fun this little site has brought to my life!

Here are some stats from Blogger that I find particularly amusing...

In addition to the United States, I am also big in the UK, Canada, RUSSIA, Germany and Malaysia. And by "big" I mean that tens of people have stumbled onto Small Fries via strange search engine searches. TENS of peoples, people!

And these are some of those brilliant searches that have spurred my global popularity...

Really drunk bitch (Well, obviously!)
Naked older women (I am truly sorry for disappointing these people.)

Haggard drunk lady (None of those here. Only drunk ladies with grace and style!)

Naked amazon woman (You will actually find her near the fountain of youth. Not here. Unfortunately.)

Shitty woman (Why would anyone bother searching for this?)

Your facebook makes me want to punch babies (I do not know. I just do not know. But I kinda felt that way around the election.)

hot gay chubby ass toys (If only you could find this on Small Fries....If only...)
fear of the duck (Many fears are covered here. Duck is not one of them. But I welcome all phobias!)

forever recipe (I don't know what the recipe for "forever" is but, if it's marriage-related, you may want to try elsewhere.)

porn that looks illegal but isn’t (I swear to you, NEITHER exist here!!!)

talking ducks in magical try to boil two kids in movie on family channel (This one is my favorite because it is so specific and it sounds both creepy and awesome at the same time. Two searches of this phrase led someone to me.)
big brain big mouth (My new slogan.)

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank Google and the baby Jesus. I'd also like to thank Larry for proof-reading my posts from time to time. He's the "big brain" to my "big mouth."

And, most of all, I'd like to thank everyone who welcomed me back by reading! I dedicate every absurd moment in my life to you!


Friday, January 25, 2013

Cooking -- Diet Recipes that Maybe Don't Suck

I'm convinced the people that work at the gym are mocking me.

I workout pretty regularly at the LA Fitness by my house. You'll usually find me there on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays on that damn elliptical machine next to the scary sweaty man who looks like a bloated Russell Brand. Or I'm next the petite, pretty lady who smells like a truck full of hogs. 

Well each time I pick up Lincoln from the child care, the seemingly nice childcare lady  says, "See you in a couple days!" 

But, lately, I see something in her eyes. It's the ever-so-subtle hint of amusement. What's that about? You laughing at me, bitch! I will cut you!!! Is something in my teeth?

Then it hit me. She and her coworkers are probably wondering aloud each time after I leave, "How the hell can that chick workout so much and still be so friggin' chubby?!?!?"

I wonder that very question myself, ladies. Thanks for rubbing it in. Even if it's only through the power of your subconscious mind. I'm practically clairvoyant when it comes to judgement. 

But, let me tell you ladies, the answer is simple. This bitch loves to eat! 

(Duh, right? Who else would name their blog after salty, fatty treats?)

I guess I should be proud of myself for working out even though my food intake is not so...clean. And I do attempt the healthy eating route every now and again. It's torture and the thought of eating chicken and salad always brings tears to my eyes.

So I am assembling an arsenal of recipes that are healthy and I'd love your help. I know all about Skinnytaste and Hungry Girl and Spark People...but what I really want are the recipes you've actually tried AND loved. I only want five star reviews here.

Here's a few that I've found to be my go-tos when I have to eat lean...

Hungry Girl's Exploding Chicken Taquitos

My friend's mom actually made these for us at our annual garage sale last weekend. They were good! Salsa is a huge staple in my diet regimen. I usually don't care for fat-free cheese but I'll take what I can get when in the trenches.

Oven-Roasted Cauliflower

I do not care for steamed vegetables. There. I said it. They kinda make me want to gag.

BUT, I do appreciate a yummy roasted veggie. Cauliflower is my favorite and I can eat a whole pan of them as if they were french fries. Seriously. You may not want to be Larry come 2 am, however.

Honey-Lime Chicken

We eat chicken ALL the time around here so I'm always looking for ways to jazz that bird up. This is my favorite marinade. If I'm doing the low carb thing, I'll eat it over lettuce instead of as a sandwich. Or it's also good on some cilantro white rice. 

Skinny Tzatziki


I heart Greek food. This sauce on some simple roasted chicken with lettuce in a pita bread. Perfection. 

Slow Cooker Korean Beef Tacos 

I have saved the best for last. It's savory and sweet and comforting and healthy, all at the same time. Tacos are my life. And, as soon as Larry goes away on another business trip, I'm making these bad boys. 

So, again, I'm imploring you to share some good eats with me! Let's minimize the suffering together!

PS. At this time tomorrow, there will be 100 boxes of Girl Scout cookies in my house. 

Fuck me.


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Confession -- First Grade Casanova...I'm Watching You.

Let me just say, the transition back to school after winter break has not gone as joyously as I had envisioned. 

We had three weeks of fun and festivities but I was ready to get back into a routine. I was actually looking forward to becoming a mega-diet-bitch again so that I can resume some progress on the road to "not-really-hot-mama-but-not-harmful-to-the-eyes-cast-upon-me."

And, it was my birthday week, so things were looking pretty darn good. 

It was actually a pretty darn good week. Just shy of the mark. 

First off, Lincoln fell off this brand new bike. 

As a protege of Evil Knievel, Linc tried using his "turbo boosters" to go full speed down a steep, curvy hill. I didn't actually see it happen because those turbo boosters are really powerful and he got way ahead of me on a walking trail. Next thing I know, I hear my dramatic daughter yelling "There's blood EVERYWHERE!" As I run toward the scene, I'm imagining every sort of Quentin Tarantino movie carnage and at least one limb five feet away from the rest of his body.

Luckily, it was not so gruesome. He had only scratched up his face enough to get looks of pity (for him) and suspicion (for me) from strangers passing by. And as fetching as a crooked Hitler mustache of blood looks on my three year old, I didn't exactly look forward to him going to school like that. 

So that happened with Linc. Oh, and now, all of a sudden, after loving school for half a year, he no longer wants to go to "that place." I blame the gratuitous vacation mommy-time, the new puppy and the stupid Kindle he got for Chanukah. Why would he ever want to leave his house?

But the worst part of my week started with a series of text messages from Iowa. 


How are you?

What are you doing?

They were followed by the link for Textnow.com. I just assumed it was some new sort of spam so I ignored them. Then Maya came home from school and told me that her friend Vincent also had a Kindle and that apparently you can download some app to text people on it.

I half-listened to her because there have been lots of stories of the Vincent variety since kindergarten. He's a cute boy and a smart boy so, while I have never encouraged her, I realized she could do worse. After all, this was the girl who, in preschool, announced, "I like boys who have fast cars and are a little bit naughty." I know what I'm up against, people. The apple doesn't fall far from the Catholic schoolgirl tree.

 Then, the next day I found someone's digits written on a piece of paper in her backpack along with the words Textnow.com. 

Wait a minute....

"Maya?" I asked. "Did you give Vincent my phone number?"

"YES!" she screamed. "I told you. We want to text each other."

Oh no. As the mystery texts flashed back into my mind, I started getting new ones on my phone. 

Are you there?

Me: Who is this?

Is this Maya? This is Vincent.

I instruct Maya to text him back that he is sending messages to my phone. But the texts don't end.

What are you doing?

Are you home from Daisy's?

Are you playing on your Kindle?

How are you?

Do you want to have a picnic in the park or go to the movies this weekend?

SAY WHAT?!?!?!?

 I ask Maya what this 6 year old Don Juan is talking about and she just shrugs and says, "He really wants to hang out with me."

Am I crazy? Or does this sound like my baby girl is being asked out on an fucking date???

At. Six. Years. Old.

I told Larry about the exchange and he was none too pleased. But I reminded him, they were little kids that they were ...innocent?

Larry's having none of it. He thinks our daughter now has a lecherous stalker. Well, he may have the stalker part right.

I get texts multiple times a day from little Vincent. And, since Maya only replies around 5% of the time, I'm not quite sure this kid is so bright. He is essentially talking to himself. 

I told her there would be no movie playdates unless his mom called her mom. But he continues to send movie times for Monsters, Inc. and Rise of the Guardians. 

Oh, and he asked her to send her picture so he could show his friends.

This is not cool.

So what do I do? Larry has turned into an NRA advocate overnight. (Not really. Don't get your panties in a bunch.)

But I really don't know how to react to this. So far, I'm just trying to be a good listener that also reminds Maya of what is appropriate and not appropriate in first grade, boy-girl friendships. She says she gets it but, in the back of my mind, I'm wondering if I have anything at all valuable enough to sell in order to raise boarding school tuition. All-girls boarding school. On a secluded island. With no Kindles. 

So Happy Birthday to me. Not only am I now in my mid-thirties, I'm also one more year closer to becoming a grandmother. And not the good GILF-kind. Or, as Nene Leakes would say, a GLAMmother. 

I am so screwed. Let me go chew on a carrot and bark at Larry. 

Pray for me.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Obession - To Consume or Not to Consume?

Is there really a question?

Now we all know I love me some shopping. Online, in the mall, in the Trader Joes...whatever. I love buying me some stuff.

I wrote awhile back about my children's swimsuit obsession. Well, we're going on a Disney cruise this summer. So the fever has begun early. This one is already hiding in my garage along with its matching hat and coverup.

Isn't it perfect????

Perfectly normal behavior for an Orange County H housewife.

But as the year begins anew, my mind starts thinking about the bigger spending picture. My dream home....

I don't even need to ask. But isn't it fucking perfect? (I would totally stop saying fuck if I lived there. You wouldn't need to. It would never even enter your mind!)

Unfortunately, we are victims of that fucking real-estate-bubble-bursting-shit. So we bought our modest townhome 7 years ago for the price of an I.E. McMansion now. But, eventually, I'd like to "move on up" as they say.

I don't need much. An extra bedroom or two or three. A yard, say.....one or two acres. That's it! Why you laugh?

But, in order to get said estate, Larry-the-buzzkill says we need to tighten the belts that I would use if my muffin top didn't already do the job just fine. 

(Even as I type this post, I am getting sidetracked by an ad for Modcloth. I'm now perusing dresses that are adorable but I'll never wear in a million years. But, maybe, if I buy one a size smaller that will motivate me...NOO!!!! I cannot do that AGAIN! I have a closet full of cute-but-never-actually-worn-clothes-with-tags-that-mock-me-each-morning-before-I-choose-the-boring-striped-t-shirt-yet-again. I must break the cycle!)

 How perfect is this for a fancy soiree that I shall host one day?

 What was I saying? Ah yes. A house. So I ask Larry for how long we'd need to save. He replies, "Oh. Two or three years."


I didn't ask but I'm still hoping he meant months. And as long as I don't ask for clarification, I can live in my delusional happy place where we have a new Cape Cod manor by Easter. Yay!!! Perfect for entertaining!!

I don't know about years, though. I'm a carpe diem kinda gal. And once I'm moved by something, I gotta have it. Hence, my daughter is enrolled in fifty after school classes because they all sound so fun and TOTALLY necessary to her academic enrichment.

Hence, I'll probably buy these curtains because, even though I will need to get them altered to fit our doors, I simply want them. And they'd fit perfectly in Cape Cod so really I'm saving money by not buying curtains twice. Take that, Suze fucking Orman.

Aren't they perfect??? And they totally match the dress above!

But we really need a house with a yard ASAP. And it's Larry's fault. (I love how, in my last post, someone commented ANONYMOUSLY that I should stop blaming Larry for everything. I immediately told Larry that if he had something to say to me he should say it to my face and not comment anonymously on my blog post. He denied any involvement and I believed him because it's too hard to comment on an iPhone. So whoever you are...I will do my best not to blame him for things that are not his fault. When and if that day comes.)

But this is clearly his work. 

Meet Max Bialystock. He's a rescued schnoodle (half schnauzer, half poodle) and the best friend that Larry has wished for all his life. I actually thought I fit that bill until Max came along. Guess Larry likes his best friends to be furrier. I tried.

I did not want a dog. I always told Larry that we'd get one after Lincoln was potty trained and we got a new house. I was hoping, at the very least, it would speed those events along. Still waiting. On both accounts. 

Max is very well behaved and about as house broken as Lincoln. Which I guess is as much as you can ask from two boys. 

But Max ain't cheap! He requires food and grooming and cute accessories. How am I going to save when I have something new to shop for?

Well, I guess I should be thankful that I've been blessed with another child. Even if all they do is eat up your dreams. I'm just buying those curtains now. 

Should I? Are they too much???

Friday, December 28, 2012

Confession -- New Year's Resolutions Worth Keeping

So before I leave for Palm Springs this weekend...

(Sidenote: If that opening has at all inspired you to come rob my house, let me just warn you not to bother. There's nothing of real value here and you'd be wasting your time. Unless you are really into non-HD, non-flat screen televisions. If so, be my guest and take ours. Maybe I'll finally get a new TV befitting my (imagined) stature in life.)

....I wanted to leave you with the 10 resolutions I shall be mentally preparing for whilst relaxing by the pool. Feel free to borrow any of them to improve your own existence in this world. 

I have organized them by important categories in my life. 

1. Husband. Hmm.....hmmmm.......hmmmmmmmm......Oh shit. This isn't starting out well. I cannot think of any resolutions related to my husband and our relationship. I'm thinking it's probably because I treat him so damn well. No improvement is necessary. Yes. That must be it. I'll come back to him if I think of anything.

2. Children. Again. Treat them pretty fucking good. Maybe too good. I got it. I resolve to put their little behinds to work more. This evening Maya was rubbing me feet and I thought, "This could work." The other day I got Lincoln to put away his socks and I thought, "This is swell." From January 1st on, the Ferchaw household will be more sweatshop-y in nature. More productive and fewer breaks. For them. Not me. 

3. Dieting. Shit just got real. Boo. But I think I have a plan to work my diet thing. I do plan to diet this year. But only every OTHER month. So, we're talking about being a mega-hungry-devil-bitch ONLY in the months of January, March, May, July, etc. I dieted in November and lost 13 lbs. Since then, I've gained 2 back but that's not bad, right? I think this could work. It could be like interval training. But without the running because I HATE to run. Which leads me to...

4. Gym. I've been going to the gym fairly regularly but there's always room for improvement there. But what I really resolve to do is improve my gym experience. More specifically, AVOID THE SMELLIES AND THE NAKIES. Nothing ruins my time on the elliptical more than when a smelly jumps on the machine next to me. It happened the other day. This woman looked perfectly hygienic until she got within five feet of me. Then I was suddenly accosted with the odor one may encounter when you take some cheese, shove it in a fat man's belly button and have him sit in a sauna for a couple hours. It was that pleasant.  Normally, I would just soldier through it but this time I could not. I was only 10 minutes into my hour and there was no way I was going to last. So I moved. Does that make me a horrible person? Probably. But if I'm going to the gym, there's only so much suffering I can take. Second, I gotta pee before I get there because our locker room is Wrinkle Ranch. I am NOT trying to look but there are always at least 5 fully naked, old, old, old, OLD ladies in there. What is the etiquette for this sort of thing? I have to look where I am going or I'll run into a wall! But they are prancing around the room like show ponies! There is no way to avoid the sags. Oh the sags!!! Lord, help me. I'm all for women being comfortable in their skin but I can't even watch Skinemax for heavens sake. And this is like Skinemax meets Lawrence Welk. Yep.

5. Drinking. Clearly I need to do this waaayyyyyy more. 

6. Reading. I need to branch out my literature this year to include more than just tales of vampires and/or rich pervs. Though I do love me some vamps and pervs, it really just isn't fair to Larry. Mid-way through a book, I start getting all grumpy that he can never be a vampire or a rich pervert. And then eventually I start whining about why he doesn't save my life more often or send bodyguards to buy me new wardrobes of clothes. I gotta think of his feelings. Wait. This could be my resolution twofer! It helps me AND him. Score!

7. Politics. About halfway through 2012, I decided to see how many people in Orange County I could piss off with just my existence. So I began wearing a NOH8 hat and sported an Obama sticker on my car. Oh, the fun I had when old ladies flipped me off from their cars. (Maybe it was just one old lady. But she was as mad as a swarm of killer Romney bees.) Then I got a little more vocal on Facebook and people started unfriending me. More good times. And, now, as we enter 2013, I resolve to find more ways to make my existence count. Because I like to believe, in my probably-delusional imagination, that for every crazy old lady, there 10 more people who are inspired by my bravery. That's right. I said bravery. Do you think it's safe to be a Democrat in Anaheim Hills? That shit will get you cut at Chick-Fil-A. 

8. Language. I resolve to only use the F-word when appropriate. Which means I do not use it enough. 

9. Friends. I can always use more....and fewer. Am I the only person who sees people on Facebook and thinks, "Gosh. I wish I were actually friends with him or her?" No? Just me? I'll own my patheticness. Lately, I've been thinking about friends past and present and wondering why some relationships stay strong and some do not. I'm using my time in 2013 to nourish the friendships I have and accepting that some weren't meant to be. At the same time, I am always looking for people to help me with resolutions 5 and 8. Message me! Maybe?

10. Blog. Finally I resolve to blog more consistently. Because it's the best way I can think of to embarrass my parents now and my kids in the future. It's the gift that keeps on giving me giggles.   

Cheers to 2013!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Culture -- The Tree That Killed Christmas

So this happened....

I blame Larry. I blame Larry because he hates Christmas. Well, he doesn't actually hate Christmas but he does hate Christmas trees. At least real ones. And, to me, that's as heinous as hating the baby Jesus. 

Maybe that's a tad harsh. But he is Jewish. So I'm not too far off.

Have I offended everyone yet? Anyone left out there?

OK. Let me back up and start again. 

Larry dislikes the hassles and tribulations of real Christmas trees. And, as he is not a Christian, I guess it would be hard for him to appreciate the tradition of a beautiful, large, full, pine-smelling tree in one's living room.

It would be really hard for him to appreciate it because it has never actually happened in the Ferchaw home.

Year after year, we've brought home a Charlie Brown tree. But without the charm and retro soundtrack. 

Our trees are never tall. They are never full. And, most of the time, they are never alive.

So by December 26th, we are pretty much throwing our tree out the front door before it catches on fire. 

But this year was a doozy, I tell you.

I had a million errands to run the weekend after Thanksgiving, so I sent Larry and the kids by themselves to a Christmas tree farm. It was one of those places where there are live trees you can cut down on the spot so they are fresh as fresh can be. 

Now I don't particularly trust Larry's judgement in Christmas trees. 

And I don't want to say that Larry is trying to sabotage Christmas....

But Larry is TOTALLY trying to sabotage Christmas. He's been angling to get a fake tree from the moment he said "I do." I'm sure of it. And that's why he's been wearing me down, year after year, with these horrible bushes he brings home.

But, being lazy, I sent him by himself with specific instructions. If you don't find the perfect tree, DON'T BUY ANYTHING.

Well, he bought something all right. And apparently he bought it from some crazy gun-wielding libertarians who owned the farm. Shoulda been a sign right there, Larry!

When he finally brought it home this past weekend, I thought at first, "It's not TOO bad."

But it was bad. It had wire-y looking branches and big, gaping holes all over it. But, even weirder for freshly-cut tree, it looked dead instead. Both figuratively and literally.

But I bit my tongue because I didn't pick it. Never send a Jewish man to do a Christian woman's job. Will I ever learn that?

The kids and I decorated it in hopes that ornaments would liven it up. They didn't. It looked even worse, if that's possible. Looking at it, you could see that its trunk was curved almost like an S. So it didn't exactly stand up straight no matter how you turned or tilted it. I called it Scoliosis Tree. Maya called it Mr. Bendy Bones. We shrugged.

 Then Mr. Bendy Bones got evil. Its weak branches couldn't wouldn't hold the ornaments, so priceless memories began to fall and shatter on the floor.

Maya's tears fell as she cursed the tree with her eyes. I turned her head so that it wouldn't seek revenge later.

Then, last night. I'm upstairs on the computer when I get a phone call from Larry....who is inside the house. 


"Come downstairs," he whispers.

"Why?" Should I be scared? Or excited? Maybe he has a cool surprise for me like jewelry or chili cheese fries? No. I should be scared.

"The tree is falling!"


I make my way downstairs. But I guess I wasn't quick enough to catch it because the pinche tree came crashing down onto my chair -- ornaments shattering in its wake. 


My first reaction is to take pictures. Then laugh. Then freak out because our new puppy is about to step on the broken glass. I try to help Larry pick it up but more ornaments begin to rain down. 

So I took a deep breath, looked at that evil tree and calmly told Larry, "Remove all the ornaments quickly before any more break. We are getting rid of this lemon."

And that's just what we did. I broke the news to Maya that Mr. Bendy Bones was no longer part of the family. She said she would now call him Mr. Broken Bones. I said I would call him Firewood.

So tonight was rather depressing as we went from Target to Home Depot to Sears looking at picked-over, clearance display artificial trees to pick one that will become a poor stand-in at the biggest moment of our kids' year.  We found one and Larry was practically giddy.

I was not.

"Cheer up," he said. "It will only be our tree for a couple years. Ten years max! And we got a screaming deal on it! A screaming deal!"

Nothing says Christmas to a Jew like a screaming deal. 

Annoyed and tired, I told him to just get us home because I had "lady issues."

He shut the ef up, shoved the three parts of our new "tree" in the car and drove us home.

Merry Christmas to the Baby Jesus.

And Merry Christmas, one and all! I am sincerely happy to have you all in my life. And nothing about my feelings are fake. ;-)

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Cooking -- Reindeer Games

It's the annual Mom Christmas Craft Olympics around Anaheim Hills. Sound the trumpets! Da da-da daaaaa!!!

I'm proud to report that I usually medal in these exercises. Not a gold. Oh no no no... 

Golds go to Room Moms who give a shit about more than just their kid. They plan games and crafts and treats for the masses. I would need to live in Colorado and have access to some quality ganja to handle that kind of pressure.

And Silvers go to Crafty Moms who scrapbook and come up with original ideas. They whip out their stamps and their hot glue guns and sew and shit. I'm afraid of needles. And glue.

I get the Bronze. I do lots of Pinterest research and rip-off the best idea. I throw lots of cash away at Michaels and then execute with mediocre skill and quality.

Yay me! 

So for my first event, baking, I made these darlings for my Girl Scout Troop. (How I was ever allowed to be a leader, I do not know.)

I think they look a little more like bears than reindeer but does that really matter? The girls only cared about who got to eat Rudolph first which I think it just sick since Rudolph seems to have the most human-like qualities of all of them. 

In my next event, classroom treats, I made assembled these bad boys. 

I asked Lincoln if he thought they looked like Reindeer Noses and he said they looked more like poo poo. 

I find this interesting for many reasons. 

First, what about the red one? Does Rudolph shit red? I think NOT!

Second, Lincoln usually says his poop looks like other things (worms, people, etc.)  So, NOW he says something looks like feces? Thanks a lot, Linc. 

Third, it totally looks like caca. 

But it's my caca. And I stand behind it. 

This is coming out all wrong. 

OMG, I cannot even stop it if I tried!!!

I give up.  

So I'm still deciding on a third event. But all the poop talk sugar is giving me a belly ache. (Sidenote: Is it normal to be simultaneously nauseated and craving nachos from Taco Bell?)

So, while I ponder my next great project, feel free to knock-off my knock-offs and do them even better. If you want, I can send you template of the tags I used for the Reindeer NOSES. 

 And may the crafty odds be ever in your favor!