7 Quick Takes Friday (vol. 49)

September 4, 2009 | 42 comments

— 1 —

It has been so long since we’ve had precipitation here that when my husband felt a few stray rain drops the other day, he exclaimed, “Look! It’s…pieces of…rain!” He could not immediately recall the word “raindrop.”

— 2 —

I discovered a recipe this week that is as yummy as it is easy: Crock Pot Chicken with Black Beans and Cream Cheese. The recipe is at that link, but here’s the short version: throw some frozen chicken, black beans, corn and salsa in a crock pot. Cook it for five hours, then throw in some cream cheese at the very end. Enjoy!

— 3 —

My wine recommendation of the week:

Barefoot Pinot Grigio, that I got for $5 at Target. We had it last weekend and it was very nice, especially for the price!

— 4 —

Yaya was here all week to look for houses. That’s right, citizens of central Texas, Yaya is about to be your neighbor. She has already been on the phone with city officials to try to get the contact information of the mayor to straighten him out (seriously), so I expect the entire city to get whipped into shape in short order after she gets here. Not only am I excited about her arrival because we love her company and she’s a ton of help, but I am convinced that it’s only a matter of time until some smart reality TV producer gets some cameras up in here and makes us all rich.

— 5 —

I occasionally amuse myself by wondering what would be the worst job in the world for me. It’s a tough choice since I am bad at so many things, but I think I finally have the answer: being a chef. I’ve been watching Top Chef with my mom lately, and every time it makes me feel like my head is going to explode. When I see some chef chop onions he thinks about making sure the oven is pre-heated for the filet mignon while watching closely for just the right amount of bubbles on the half-and-half simmering on the stove for a perfect creme anglaise, I feel like I need to retire somewhere quiet and fan myself for a moment. I think I would respond to that kind of intense multitasking by locking myself in a closet and screaming. I am in awe of anyone who can do it.

It was interesting to think about, though. What job would be the worst job in the world for you?

— 6 —

I was going to write something else for #6, but something has come up that I need to address. I am writing this on Thursday evening. My husband came home a while ago to see the kids having their afternoon snack, some yogurt which I proudly announced I’d found on sale:

“That’s laxative yogurt!” he exclaimed in horror.

What? What? Who’s ever heard of laxative yogurt? Was he kidding? He said that there are evidently commercials for this product on television “all the time, ” but those of us who live in caves and only come out of them for the occasional Top Chef episode don’t understand those kind of hip cultural references. He then picked up the empty cup and pointed to the diagram of a large downward-pointing arrow over a stomach:

“What, pray tell, did you think that meant?” he wanted to know.

“Umm, ” I replied. “That when you eat the yogurt it goes down to your stomach? Like it’s, you know, yummy in your tummy or something?”

He looked skeptical, though I quickly squelched any doubt by encouraging him to follow it to its logical conclusion that I just want more excrement-related fiascos in my life. I pointed out that it’s not like I was there in the yogurt section like a lady strolling through her garden, taking as much time as needed to ponder each item; it was rather more like being the captain of a ship of mutinous pirates, the kids swinging from the cart while alternately hitting each other, singing and screaming. This was not exactly an environment conducive to decoding complicated yogurt labels.

My son just walked up to tell me he has a tummy ache. This is not good.

— 7 —

To get your weekend off to the right start, I offer you this: SCORPIONCAM!!!

UPDATE: Oh, no! Scorpioncam has been deleted! Will ARMADILLOCAM!!! do?


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1. Blair’s Blessings
2. Marie, Two Ways of Renouncing the Devil
3. Tracy@The Secret of Living
4. Kathryn @ The Bookworm
5. violingirl
6. Angie @ Many Little Blessings
7. Venite
8. Tami @ The Next Step
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28. Pharmgirl @ Adventures in Pharm Land
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31. Sara @ AShowerOfRoses
32. Fencing Bear at Prayer
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34. Tina @ Multiple Mom T
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  1. Marie

    Not sure that yogurt has been tested on people under 60. Well, since you wrote that post earlier in the night, I guess by this time it has been. Hope it turned out well.

  2. Angie @ Many Little Blessings

    Oh my goodness — I had to laugh out loud (and it's serious when I actually took the time to write out the words) about the "pieces of rain." Too funny!

  3. j. christian

    It must be unsettling for you to discover that scorpions sound a lot like birds. Move a little closer to one next time and you'll hear it.

    No joke, I was in a grocery store today looking at that very brand of yogurt and wondering what that "bifudus regularis" was all about. I'm no marketing expert, but advertising the live cultures in my food is not exactly winning me over.

  4. Tami Boesiger

    Oh my, your yogurt story was funny. How did it all come, I mean, turn out?

  5. hricco

    Lol, that is not a laxative yogurt. It has the same probiotics all yogurt has. They claim to have more "active cultures" than other yogurts. Don't know if I buy that. But there aren't any laxatives in it. This just means that it helps all the good bacteria in your gut digest. It's not going to act like a laxative on you. I'm sorry your little guy has a tummy ache, though.

  6. Mary

    Oh No…Jennifer…how did the tummy ache end? Hopefully all is well with your little ones after the yummy yogurt experiment. Thank you for starting my day with laughter. Your the best!

  7. Suburban Correspondent

    Your husband's wrong – the yogurt might actually help prevent diarrhea, etc. The probiotics added to the yogurt are ones that belong in your digestive system but are frequently removed by antibiotics, viruses, etc. They might make one more regular in the sense that one was going potty too much before ingesting the yogurt, not too little.

    Once when my son was having diarrhea (think 14 diapers in one day, okay?), our nurse neighbor recommended probiotic supplements. Worked like magic!

    Also, about that crockpot recipe (which I can't wait to try out, by the way!) – if you can thaw out that chicken the night before, it would be best. Many food experts advise against putting frozen food in a crockpot, as it takes the food too long to warm up at crockpot temps and therefore leaves it in the "dangerous" – i.e., bacteria-growing – temp range too long.

    Finally, most people looking at your job right now think their heads are going to explode. What do you mean, you don't know how to multitask?

  8. TwoSquareMeals

    My mother-in-law buys that yogurt and doesn't see a thing wrong with giving it to our kids! She says it is good for their digestive systems because of the good bacteria. Regular yogurt is, but not that stuff! It should have a "For Adults Only" label. I have to check her fridge every time we go over to make sure it isn't in there.

  9. Jaclyn

    My mother-in-law once fed my toddler two servings of that Activia in one day. Boy, did I pay for it the next day… Good luck with that.

    Thanks for hosting Quick Takes. I always enjoy finding new blogs to read this way!

  10. nicole

    Thanks for the recipe! Sounds delicious and I can't wait to make it. Love recipezaar.

  11. That Married Couple

    I heard that all yogurt does that, actually.
    And you can't beat a good crock pot recipe – looking forward to trying it!

  12. Solveig

    You convinced me. Even if I did some multitasking when we raised our chidlren, I could never be a chef!

  13. moey

    Anyone who thinks Activia is not laxative yogurt either has insides of steel, or they haven't eaten it. Very sorry for your experience, because I already know how that one turned out, if it was anything like mine. 🙂 Back to making my own yogurt, and I'll never eat Activia again. I love your blog.

  14. Enbrethiliel


    In response to #5:

    The worst job in the world for me would be anything that requires me to do a lot of record keeping and paperwork. I'm simply bad at it and have had to resign from a job in shame because I was two months behind on absolutely everything.

  15. Rebecca

    #5 is an interesting question. I think for me anything in the public sphere would be bad, bad, bad… politician, maybe. I'm an introvert and would probably cry when people made fun of me!

  16. christine

    Great posts this week, Jen!

    #2 Thanks for the crock pot recipe. I have been discovering the joys of crock pot cooking recently and am LOVING it!!

    #4 Wow, that is great news! Can't wait for the increase in YaYa stories. I love them. I would immediately be addicted to your reality show. Your old post about the Easter bunnies the kids weren't supposed to touch still cracks me up.

    #5 The absolute worst nightmare job for me would be a waitress. I can easily see myself spilling drinks, food… dropping plates, getting the $ or orders wrong… oh the horrors would be endless.

    #6 We are huge yogurt eaters here. Our fridge is typically loaded with a variety of crush cups, tubes, the drinkable ones, etc. So of course we tried that pro-biotic stuff & it was a nightmare. I will spare you the details. I'm happy that some of your readers do not experience these problems when they eat the stuff… but my family will not be eating it ever again.

    Thanks Jen for your blog! You are a doorway not only to many other wonderful sites, but to ideas, books, and other food for thought as well! You are a bright light in my day. Have a blessed weekend!

  17. Lovesgarlic

    This is the best description of grocery shopping with kids that I have heard in a long time. I am still laughing and laughing about it. "I pointed out that it's not like I was there in the yogurt section like a lady strolling through her garden, taking as much time as needed to ponder each item; it was rather more like being the captain of a ship of mutinous pirates, the kids swinging from the cart while alternately hitting each other, singing and screaming."

  18. ~ Judy ~

    Wow…good wine..tasty dinners…and YAYA…doesn't get better than that!
    Sorry if I don't really wish to take part in that yogurt aspect of your week though…ha ha…hope it all "turned out" ok. ::SMILE::

  19. Martha

    Ok, I HAVE to give my toddler daughter that yogurt every day (I am totally serious), as well as the Mrs. Baird's Actifiber bread and a fiber granola bar, or we have … well, the issues you would have if you needed laxatives. I'm serious, it is awful and traumatic if you don't watch her diet and make sure she gets this stuff every day. There is much screaming and crying and we can't leave the house for hours at a time. So consider yourself lucky you have not had to really get to know Activia yogurt yet. Btw, HEB has the generic version and it's yummy and cheap, in case you ever do need it. 🙂

  20. Lucy

    How funny about the rain! I don't think the yogurt really is laxative. Active yeast cultures are really very good for you and can help with various digestive issues. My kids eat that same yogurt and have never had any problems. Watermelon is way more of a laxative than yogurt. 🙂

    And I wish Yaya would come to my state. We need some people whipped into shape. LOL!

  21. Amy

    #1 is quite hilarious.

    Oh the yogurt thing! Hope that turns out ok.

  22. Chelsea

    I have that black bean and cream cheese chicken recipe in my stack of "things to make"… Sounds wonderful!

  23. LauraAnne

    Um… the scorpioncam has been deleted. I was going to visit the cam and name the scorpions based on a sliding scale of creepiness.

    Phooey. I guess I'll just have to do this homework instead.

  24. 'Becca

    My worst job would be sports commentator: "And now #55 is kicking the ball. Everybody's running around. To the left! To the right! What's the point of it all? And they're jumping in a heap. Boy, I'm glad I'm not in there. Looks uncomfortable. Now #7 is running under the metal thingy. Looks like a disappointment for the red team. What are the rules of this game again? The umpire has stopped the clock. Is there anything to read around here?"

  25. Barbara

    Nevertheless Activia yogurt is still *loaded* with sugar, so I can't eat it. That's so irritating, when these foods all come out with miraculous health claims and the one ingredient which probably causes more health damage than anything else is first or second on the list.

  26. Kat L

    The description of shopping with the kids is hilarious! I used to wonder why my mom never read the labels on things before she bought them … now I know.

    My blood pressure rises every time I watch cooking shows too! I recently asked a friend who likes cooking why he isn't a chef, and he said, "Because I LIKE cooking."

  27. Ginkgo100/Robyn Broyles

    Actually, I rather like multitasking while I cook, though it took me a while to get the hang of it. Even more important was learning my limits as a multitasking cook. (After all, it's proven that when you multitask, your performance on each task suffers.) The thing is, my limits are far below the minimum required of chefs. So yeah, I would not relish that job. Also, chefs must be consistent. I don't need that kind of pressure. If I screw up a dish, I like to be able to say the following: "You always have two options for dinner around here: take it or leave it. Hey, it's better if you put this stuff on it. Oh well, guess I learned a lesson for next time!"

    Worst job in the world for me? I was going to say an administrative secretary, you know, the quiet, behind-the-scenes type who organizes everything and makes sure all the boring details like business licenses and payroll get taken care of. That would be bad. But I thought of something worse for me: human resources. I think I would weep every day if I worked in human resources.

  28. Anna

    My worst job would be some form of salesman. Maybe especially door-to-door salesman. Picture me spending a half hour or more just getting up the courage to go up to someone's door and ring the doorbell, then half-heartedly pitching a speech before admitting that I don't even own one of whatever I'm selling and, while my product might have a few advantages over others, the benefits don't outweigh the extra price.

  29. The Burgess family

    I thought all yogurt was good for your digestive system (with those live cultures and all that), I've never heard of laxative yogurt either.

    That chicken recipe sounds great, I will definately be trying that one. And picking up a bottle of Barefoot wine as well. Thanks!

  30. Christian H

    #5: Acrobat. Heights + coordination + athletics + (audience + tight clothing) = not good.

  31. Gina

    Check out the Dannon Activa website. It says it can help with a slow moving digestive system if eaten daily for two weeks.

  32. Starrball

    I linked up. I loved #1 and the way you described 6.

  33. Dawn Farias

    I love #6. "Yummy in your tummy", mutinous pirates,… too much!

  34. Elizabeth Mahlou

    I agree with you, Jennifer. Being a chef would be the worst possible job for me. My son even wrote a book about how bad a cook his mother is! Now that's bad!!

  35. Anonymous

    "yummy in your tummy" LOLOL I have so BTDT, sister! I pray things remain calm on the poo-front. God bless you 🙂

  36. Joy

    My first visit to your blog. So glad you are blogging.

    As for Activia. Hey if its on sale and I have a coupon to go with it…its going in the cart.
    A little extra encouragement in the digestive area won't hurt any one. My husband won't eat it. He calls it "Acdukia". Sorry..But that's him.
    Have a great weekend. I'll be back,


  37. Joy

    Oh, and I meant to mention that I hate to hear that YaYa is leaving Houston. We need her here.
    Please keep us updated on her. I went back and read some of the post about her and she's a gem.


  38. MamasBoy

    Live cultures help with digestion, but aren't necessarily laxatives. all healthy people have bacteria in their gut helping them digest food. About the only people who don't have this bacteria are those taking antibiotics… which often causes digestion problems.

  39. monica_divineoffice.org

    I think my sister's job is the worst thing I can do for a living, she is an accountant, my head seams to explode just thinking about it!

    Yes, Armadillocam is just perfect:))

    Liturgy of the Hours

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