Sunday, December 30

Dear Judge Parker

Enough with the brownies already!!!!

We get it, they were delicious, and now suddenly you want to eat a whole chicken. Just bash us over the head with the freakng HASH BROWNIES already!!!

Tuesday, December 25

Merry Christmas to all...

Here's to sugar plums and wishes come true.

Friday, December 21

The Hair Affair is Over

I am officially no longer in love with my haircut.
This is pretty much the best I can do with it, without breaking out a bazillion hair care items.

And well, since the likelihood of anyone but the mailman seeing me is pretty slim. This is what I'm going with.

I suppose I can comfort myself with the fact that this is a very famous, iconic hairstyle, known across the land.

Unfortunately this is the icon.

Her Royalness

Lady Piko deGallo.

Every month Sarge has to attend Airman Leadership School Graduation dinners for his Airman who are graduating. Some time ago he decided to take Piko along with him to these very boring semi-formal dinners. "That's crazy!" you might be thinking. A 5 year old at a very boring semi-formal dinner?!! It actually works out to a win, win, win situation for all of us. Sarge gets props for being a good father, as well as for having a well behaved child, AND most importantly has a great excuse for cutting out early. Piko gets to get dressed up all fancy, and have a special night out with daddy. And I get to have a night off, and eat a peanut butter sandwich for dinner, and take a 20 minute uninterrupted shower.

Everyone's happy, everyone wins.

Here she is with Sarge doing their "Prom Pose".

Thursday, December 20


What other sane dog owner would let their black dog sleep on their white couch?
Or, it could just be that I'm *not* sane.
She's sleeping on MY side of the couch as well.

Tuesday, December 18

Get Your Bake On!

So the other day I mentioned that I didn't start baking yet. Well, today is "BAKE DAY!!"
I thought that Piko was in school for a full week, but it turns out that they are off on Friday. Whoops, gotta get those cookies done for the teachers and staff!

Now, there is a lady here who's husband used to work with Sarge. Every year she organizes a "cookie swap" with some of the other wives and girlfriends. Back in the day when I used to think I had to be nice I went to the crappycookie swap. I always made my Mom's "secret family recipe" Christmas Kisses, which are basically meringue cookies with mint extract, green food coloring, and mini chocolate chips. I think I have heard this called "divinity" or something like that. Well, they're easy to make, but they take a long time, and I would have to make something redonkulous like 10 dozen.

Anyway, I guess the point of this crappycookie swap is that you'll get lots of different kinds of cookies, and not have to bake a billion kinds yourself. Unfortunately, and you might be able to guess, most of the cookies were pretty crappy. I'm sorry, but if I wanted cookies made from frozen cookie dough I'd go and by some freaking frozen cookie dough!! I would always end up throwing away more than half of the cookies. Even Sarge would refuse to eat them. What the hell do I want with 10 dozen crappy ass cookies in exchange for my awesome yummy cookies?!?

So these days when she asks me if I want to come, I just flat out say no.

This year I made:
Chocolate Chip. Both semi sweet, and white chocolate chip. Here Doge deGallo gets in on some of the crumb action.

Mom's Christmas Kisses

Almond cookies

Sugary ginger cookies

And something new. Sweet Wafers! I really just wanted to try out my new snowflake cookie cutters. These actually turned out very yummy. Not really cookies at all. They're like puffed pastry, I could eat about 20 of them in one sitting.

I also decided to bribe make nice with the secretaries and office staff at Piko's school. I bet they get the short end of the stick there in the office, so I made them a pan of brownies. One half is regular, and the other is white chocolate drizzled with crushed candy cane sprinkles. Sarge gave those a thumbs down, but he's not much for mint chocolaty chip anything.

I love baking. But I have say that it's terribly difficult to bake when every time you turn around you see this:

Monday, December 17

EVERY time!!!

I think sometime in late October I mentioned I was getting started on Christmas. Weeeeellll, yeah, No.

It's been a heck-a-busy-crafty-rush-race-to-the-finish month.

"What?!?" you say.

Well, it all started out with some crafty mittens. 24 sets of crafty mitten ornaments decorations for Piko's kindergarten class. I really feel for kids these days. Budget cuts and pushing for high test scores means little or no art time in class, even at the Kindergarten level. I volunteered on morning to make these ornaments decorations with the class.
Prepping the mittens.

The finished product!! I was so proud of these children. They all were very excited to be creating something of their very own. Mrs. Potts (Piko's teacher) incorporated it into her lesson plan for the day. They talked about winter weather, and their letter of the day was "M".

The mittens displayed in class. Thank you Liesl for the pattern and inspiration for this project!!

Next came a birthday for Piko's best friend from Preschool. Guess what her favorite color is!
She got:
A sweet little kitty made with a pattern from Sew Pretty Homestyle.

A Sube Sac to carry her around in.

And a Disappearing Nine Patch Quilt in her favorite color. Can you guess what that color might be? Any clues??

And finally a Pinata!! I had a hard time making the wings myself, and then had a brain fart and realized that if I bought some cute wings the Birthday girl would have them to wear later! Bonus!! And then I was at Target, and the antenna headband was in the $1.00 section! Double bonus!
I love me some Pinatas!

And then another Disappearing Nine Patch quilt for my good friend AJ in Hawaii. This had to be done and ready to mail by the 15th!

I put the last stitch into it at 9:45 PM on the 14th. Whew! The backing of the quilt is a thrifted flannel duvet cover, how awesome are those cherries?!

Wow, I must say again that my camera is crap!

And this is why I can never have more babies (click on the picture to enlarge). Inevitably while quilting on the couch, the couch arm ends up looking like this, and will stay this way for days. Luckily Piko is old enough to know to stay away, though she will steal my thread scraps and make little bird nests with them. Our house is filled with poking, scratching, swallowing, burning hazards like that on a daily basis.

Add to all this fun, our first real snow of the year.

And a trip to see Santa, standing in line at the post office, PTA meetings, Sarge's staff Holiday party, non-Christmas Card sending guilt, and about 4 power outages at the house.

Fun times, and I have not even started baking yet.

Wednesday, December 12

I just sent an e-mail to Sarge at work to tell him he's taking his daughter to the



I think I'll wait awhile before I tell him that I'm going along too.

Monday, December 10


Today I got my first fundraising donation call in a very long time.

That in itself is not the annoying.

The caller first asked for "MR. deGallo". He's not here I say, can I take a message?
"Is this MRS. deGallo?" Yeeeesss......


Sure, I'm totally going to use my credit card to make a donation over the phone....Riiiiight. Ok, but even this is not the annoyance.

Throughout the rest of the call, the "operator" kept referring to me as "MISS. deGallo".

I kept wanting to ask him if he wanted me to get my daughter, who I'm sure would be most unwilling to part with the $4.00 in her wallet as she is saving up to go to hell on earth Build a Bear.

I do realize that it is not uncommon to no longer make the distinction between Mrs. and Miss., but COME ON!!!!

I guess I'm just a codgerty old fart.

Sunday, December 2

Now The Hard Part

So now that the excitement of new orders (YAY GERMANY!) has worn off, we are left to consider the difficult-ness(?!?) of the impending move.

Sarge's orders have him reporting to the new base by early May. Well, Piko does not get out of school until early June. Does he go on ahead early and get settled, find a house, hook up the internets, etc, etc. I follow later after Piko gets out of school? That being so, I would have to be in charge of packing, cleaning, and clearing the house with the housing office, shipping the car, shipping myself, my child, a cat and a dog overseas. We have alot of things that we have to get rid of, washer and dryer, tons of small things that we've amassed throughout the years we've been here. And I don't really see the point of taking all of our 180 lamps, and other small electronics with us. Garage sale....meeehhh...Salvation Army...eeeeh....
How about do we pull the kid early from school???'s much school can she miss before having to repeat? It'll probably end up being the last month and a half. That's just not acceptable to me.


See, one of the disadvantages of not moving in so long is that I have never actually been involved in a military transfer move. I have no idea what I would have to do, and Sarge, well, he's not all that forthcoming with the information. Well, he would have not other choice but to be if he leaves me here to do it all by myself. I guess other families have done it before, so I'm sure I can too.

Then there's the whole going to visit the in-laws trip we have to make time for as well.

I guess what's really bothering me is that there are no decisions that can be made immediately. It all depends on something, which depends on something else, depending on who you ask, and when. And of course, since Sarge works nights, who knows when he'll be able to go in during regular business hours to finally talk to someone. In my own perfect world of deGallotopia I would have had all of these questions answered the minute we found out we were leaving Maryland. But of course, I fail to remember that I don't live in deGallotopia, I live in Militariantia.

Thursday, November 29

La, la, la!


I know, I know.

But this time we're not moving down the street, we're moving to Germany! SHA-ZAM!!

Ok, not until June of next year, but after 7 long years here, it's on the books.

Auf Wiedersehen Maryland!

Tuesday, November 20

Slutty or Not?

So I'm going to Sarge's squadron's Christmas party this year. That means I have to dress in something other than jeans and sneakers. Bah.

I'm looking for a pair of heels, and kind of want to get these. Yeah, yeah, they're from Frederick's of Hollywood, but that was pretty much the only place I could find them within my price range, I don't want to spend more than $40.00 for a pair of shoes I'll only wear about 2x a year. But I like the heavy ankle strap look.

So the question is, are they too slutty? And are they AA(Age Appropriate)?

I will be pairing them with a pretty conservative skirt and blouse, what I might call, "Stealth Slutty".

Monday, November 19

The Sacrifice, and the Reward.

Here is the sacrifice.

That is 4 bags of toys and clothes that Piko and I cleaned out of her room to donate to the thrift store. 4 BAGS!!! This does not even count the one huge bag of things we threw away.

And here is the reward.

Now, I know, I know. We just cleaned out that room. Look at how nice it is!

The floor!!! I can see a sea of floor!!

And then we add a new toy.

Well, we went to Build-a-Bear because well, we NEVER go there. NEVER. My sister-in-law ruined us by taking Piko there when we were in Hawaii. She actually refused to tell me where they were going because she was afraid I would say no. I wouldn't have, it's just something that Sarge and I don't do. But as it turns out, surprise, surprise, Piko loved it, and loves her doll, Kiki.

So back to why we ended up going to B-a-B. One of Piko's favorite shows is Clean House. I don't know why. Anyway, while we were cleaning her room I kept talking like Niecy Nash. "Foolishness!!! unh!" "Get rid of the clutter!! uh-huh, that's what I'm talking about!" Anyway, it worked so well, that I decided (after talking with Sarge) that I would offer her a Clean House like reward. For those who don't watch, Niecy usually offers rewards as incentive for people to get rid of things. It's usually big ticket items like furniture or flooring. I didn't want to take her to Toys R' Us or anything like that with Christmas looming in the future. So I thought why not something that we would not normally do.

Now Kiki has a new friend named Tabbytha, as well as a clean house.

And all three of them like Mythbusters.

Saturday, November 17

Not Quite RIght

Blah. This is just not quite right. I think I'll have to keep tweaking it. I would really like my banner to look more like Finnegan's Cake. I think it has more to do with finding the right template. I'm getting all buggy eyed trying to do it.

Friday, November 16

Blog Play

Playing around a little with the layout, and considering a more personalized look.
For those with Blogger, How About Orange has a good tutorial on how to update/customize your template. I'm not quie there, all that coding talk makes me dizzy. I'm more of a click and stick kind of gal.

On other news, Piko has finally gotten over her Conjunctivitis, and is back at school. Just in time for the weekend, though she did learn 6 more sight words while she was stuck at home with me. YAY! I hate sight words.

PTA ladies are still nutty, I went to a PTA board meeting that lasted 4 hours!!! 4 FREAKING HOURS!!!! And they wonder why I won't sit on a committee. I would rather shoot myself.

Got to the gym today, and ow. Just ow, I can already feel that I'm going to hurt tomorrow. Ow.

Tuesday, November 13

If That's Not A Sign...

Yesterday, I broke my computer chair.

Sat right down and the SOLID METAL bar that holds the chair onto the swivel snapped. SNAPPED I SAY!!!


My fracken chair just called me a fatass!

Update 8:40 am: The gym is conspiring against me. It's closed today for installation of new equipment! BAH! So I had to drag my unmotivated self home, and exercise in Sarge's torture chamber cold garage gym. And now I want to bake brownies. Poo!

Monday, November 12

Weekend Warriors



It was a totally unscheduled weekend. Sarge was off from work, no birthdays, no PTA, no dinner plans, no nothing, nada, zilch, zip, diddly.

We did actually get out to see a movie. And anyone that knows Piko de Gallo live and in person knows that we NEVER ever get to go to the movies. She hates movies in the movie theatre with a passion. We don't know if it is the dark, or the huge screen, the loud, we are not sure. We do know that she hates animated movies though. Sleeping Beauty, hates it, Malefecent scary. Little Mermaid, hates it, Ursula, scary. Monsters Inc., well, duh, monsters=scary!!! You get the picture. Set her down infront of some bloody chummed up water on Discovery Channel Shark Week and she's happy, but an animated baddy, not so much.

Sarge bribed her with promises of Sprite and popcorn.

We ended up going to see "Bee Movie". Meh, good soundtrack, but it's not a keeper. At least we got out of the house.

Piko of course hated it, even if there were not real "Bad Guys" in it. She spent much of the movie on Sarge's lap, inadvertently slapping the lady next to her in the shoulder with a half eaten chicken strip. But she refused to leave, we were willing to chuck out $45.00 we spent getting tickets and refreshments for the sake of Piko's mental health. But really she couldn't stop watching.

Next up "Enchanted" because, we watched the "Making Of" short on Disney Channel, and saw that the dragon at the end is not really real. Hmmmmm, we'll see about that one, I'm thinking the very first showing about 2 weeks after it opens in theaters.

My dream though, a Mythbusters or Dirty Jobs feature film.

Thursday, November 8

I'm always managing to get messy.

I know, I know, a bit too old for the black nail polish. But I rather like it.

So what's all the paint about?
Piko's school is going on a Reading Safari!!!!! Whatever that is. All I know is I was asked to paint a jungle mural. Sarge says it's more of a forest, but what the hey. That's what they get when they only give me 2 days!

Poor Piko, she fell asleep wile we were reading tonight.

A closer bit of the "mural" and Dog deG's butt.

And you KNOW I got paint on the carpet! Frackity-frack!

Tuesday, November 6

Air Force Widow, Part II

Sarge seems to be determined to try again to make me an Air Force Widow

He got his Christmas present from me a bit early this year.

Here he is reliving his High School Gym class in our garage. As an aside, I think it's kind of funny that we were recently discussing Gym Teachers, and the "Evil Rope" on one of my favorite daily reads.

And this time he's taking the kid down with him!
We definitely need to keep our garage door closed from now on. There is no threat that will keep the neighborhood kids out with this thing dangling from our rafters.

Do you suppose that I could be implicated?? You know, since I purchased the rope for him? I suppose that the worst thing that could happen would be that he breaks a bone, and then maybe he'll finally get a couple of days off from work.

Monday, November 5

Without Friends Like These, Who Needs Friends....

I think that Piko is worried that I don't have any friends.

We were at her school helping out with set up for the Halloween Party"Fall Festival". Naturally the PTA is a bunch on ladies with a couple of dads and husbands thrown in.

So as we are leaving Piko asks me :"Mommy, you're making new grown up friends?"

Sarge mumbles under his breath: "God I hope not."

So I have to explain that while these nice ladies are not exactly my friends, they're not exactly not either.

A good teaching point I guess. I tell her it's like this, I don't expect her to be friends with everyone, there is always going to be someone in your class that you don't especially like. But I DO expect you to be polite and respectful to everyone, that includes people you don't really care for.

And then I thought nothing of it.

A couple of days later we're at a the fall sports awards banquet, and we bump into one of the PTA ladies that I actually wouldn't mind being friends with. We chat for a few minutes, and she talks with Piko a little. Later Piko asks me again if I'm going to be friends with the "Nice Lady".

I think that sometimes children are not given enough credit for being able to pick up on social cues, and folk think that they are not very observant. Heck, I don't think that my child is particularly observant most of the time, but sometimes she really does surprise me.

Friday, November 2

Tired? Me too

I blame President Bush.
What you say??
OK, so my neighbor and I were talking yesterday about how tired we have been this week. She beat me out by telling me that she went to bed at 8:30 on Wednesday, after Trick or Treating with her kids. Well, I give her leave to be more tired than I am since she has 3X as many children as I do. I fell asleep in the middle of Mythbusters on Wednesday, so I never did get to see Jamie jump on that pile of gunpowder. (I did suggest to Piko yesterday that we should be the Mythbusters for Hallowen next year, but was promptly shot down. I can't imagine any 6 year old girl who wouldn't want to wear a walrus mustache, a black beret, and a crisp white shirt as their costume. She wants to be some kind of princess again, go figure.)
Anyway, I mentioned that maybe it had to do with the fact that our bodies are used to being one hour behind by this time of the year. You know, since President Bush changed the day that we are going to get that extra hour of sleep.
Do you suppose that our internal body clocks are so well set that this could even be possible?

And on another note, yay for more mediocrity!! We're going to the first quarter awards ceremony at Piko's school today. One parent has told me that the Principal of the school does not believe in only rewarding some kids, and that everyone will most likely be getting some kind of an award. Way to encourage a sense of entitlement and lack of motivation in our children. From the Principal no less. I guess we have to wait and see what happens.

Thursday, November 1

Glad That's Over....

Halloween, over for another year. And we were heck-a busy.
Fall Festival, 2 birthday parties, soccer, pinata smash, all cumulating in the sugar fest of Trick O' Treating.

Finished shots of my horns, completing the outfit, heavy black eyeliner and awesome Drag Queen false eyelashes.

Piko in her costume last night, she eschewed(??) the makeup and hairstyling tonight, she just wanted to get outside with her friends.

Pumpkin pinata after it had been smashed. I forgot to take a picture of it hanging up.

The candy scramble.

Piko taking a shot at the second spider sack pinata.

And the aftermath. Poor pinatas, I know that's what they're made for, but still...

Sarge took Piko around the block for Treating, he had to be home by 7:00 or so because he had to be somewhere at 8:00. Well, they didn't make it back until almost 7:30!!! Sarge was carrying Piko's candy bucket, and his pockets were stuffed with more candy. Holy crap!!! Luckily more kids were still coming to our door, so I was able to sort Piko's stuff and get all of the taffy, gum, and things that she does not eat and redistribute. I swear she had about 6 lbs. of junk. And I have to say that Milk Duds are kicking my butt this year.

Sunday, October 28


Piko de Gallo won a prize in her school's costume parade lastnight!
Score one for home made costumes.
I am recovering from 4 hours at the face painting table.
That is all.

Sunday, October 21

The Good, The Bad, and the Uuuuglaay.

What a week!

The Good:
More than half of the auctions I had up on E-bay sold successfully, and everyone but one person paid. Yay! Sarge was happy because with some of the money I made I bought him a climbing rope for his home gym. I guess he's going to relive those High school Gym class moments in our garage.

Halloween pinatas are coming along well, finally.

The Pumpkin just needs a nose (Piko made me that great summer teeth-some'r here, and some'r there-mouth), and the spider sack needs some dressing. But it looks like they are ready to stuff and hang. For once I'm ahead of schedule with a pinata. Usually the night before I'm gluing and desperately drying with my hairdryer.

An interesting project I was handed by Piko's school was completed in record time. Make two puppets to help raise awareness of the importance of attendance, was my brief. Huh. Well I found this pattern, which was awesome, and came up with these two.

How they will help raise awareness about attendance is beyond me, I guess they'll be using them in their morning announcements.

The Bad:
UGH, we were sick this week.

Piko registered a fever on Sunday, and slept for 14 hours, so she had to stay home from school. Lucky for her it was a short week with Thursday and Friday off due to teacher grading, and a conference. Her temperature got up to 103 on Tuesday night, fevers freaking freak me out. My sinuses have been acting up this week too, lucky me. So I took Mrs. S's advice and tried out the Musenex, and I'm never going back. That stuff dried me out. Thanks Mrs. S, I'm sorry I laughed at you and your upcoming trip. I'll never laugh at you again!!
Poor Piko, she was finally let out of the house on Saturday for her second to last soccer game of the season. She was so happy that she ran around the field like a maniac, and then coughed up a lung.
Luckily for both of us she is well enough to go to school on Monday.

Sarge managed to piss off one of our neighbors by not paying attention to what Dog deGallo was doing while outside. I guess she went over to their house while Sarge was mowing the lawn and bothered their dog. The guy was seriously pissed off, and I don't blame him, Dog is a big dog, their dog is very little. Nothing happened to the dog, but I bet it freaked the guy out. I feel bad because even though Sarge told him sorry at the time, I still think that he should go over and apologize now that the neighbor has probably calmed down. But Sarge being the jerk that he is won't do it. And what am I supposed to do, go over and say. "Hey, sorry that my husband is such an a$$hole."?

The Uuuglaay:
My first apple pie of the season.

Not only did I put to much cinnamon, the "pour" cap was open, not the "sprinkle",but the crust was too wet, AND I over baked it. GAH!! Lucky for me, Sarge does not have a very delicate palate.

My sewing room is a total and complete disaster!! It has still not recovered from a last minute birthday present project.

I guess that's what I'll be doing with the rest of my day.

Sunday, October 14

Darn Kids These Days!!

I guess it's time to knit me a granny shawl, gather 15 more cats, and retire to my rocker on the porch.

Twice today I uttered the statement "Damn kids these days..."

First time I was eating breakfast with Piko and looking over their picture day forms. Yay picture day! What's this??? For $10.00 extra you can order photo retouching? For elementary school students??! Well, heck, no more fears of the night before breakout, or bad hair day! I remember the year that my dad got me ready for school on picture day and sent me to school with a ratty old t-shirt and slicked down hair. I ended up in a "boy" slot on the group picture page. And then there was my 11th grade photo where I looked like I had this hair.
Oh you know, any excuse to post this video is a good one!

Second time would be this afternoon when I was informed that a parent, independently from the program, is going ahead and arranging for trophy for the soccer teams. I have several problems with this. First, a participation medal is already included in each child's registration fee. Second, what the heck? I have parents on my team that can't afford to buy their kids black shorts to play in (we bought extras and handed them out with the team jerseys). I'm sure as heck that they won't be able to afford a second trophy, and then their kid will feel left out. Third, and probably my biggest problem. Trophy's? Aren't trophy's for winners? Since we do not play competitively, there technically are no winners. I might support a "Most Improved Player" type award that is chosen by the coach, but other than that, not so much. Also, I find it kind of ironic that the parent on my team who seems most interested in the trophy has the most underachieving child. This kid could not kick his way out of a paper bag, nor does he put forth any effort. He's more interested in running around the field flailing his arms and staying as far away from the ball as he possibly can. It has come to this, we are rewarding and promoting mediocrity, and lack of effort in our children. Here's a trophy for...well, for nothing.

Maybe I should be saying "Parents these days..."

Friday, October 12

This Week's WIP.

It's been a Hallo-weenie week at the de Gallo household.

I've managed to finish most of Piko's costume early this year! Let me tell you, gluing 300 feathers is much easier than sewing 200 sequins.
Here is her "Swan Princess" mask.

And her wings. I might have to do these over, because I think that they might be a bit too big. I'm thinking that I might go with little wingettes, or wing-nubbins instead. Plus I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind about how she is going to actually wear them. I've started on one of two pinatas I'm making for the neighborhood kids to kick off the night. I'm inviting them all down to our circle and giving them a whack. It's no life size rainbow zebra, but I think I'm going with a Jack O' Lantern, and maybe if I can pull it off a enormous spider egg sack, a la Martha(of course I can's find a link).
Inspired by MissMeander's Gold Horns Tutorial I'm making my own set of horns. Although I did not use the same kind of clay that she does. I used Crayola Model Magic for mine.
The only problem I had was that the Model Magic does not twist like a heavier material would, so it took alot of work, and many tries to get the twist in there nicely. Also, it is hard to get any kind of curved shape, or bend into the horns with this material, it sort of just droops, sags, and sticks to itself too much. So I would not recommend this material, other than for it's light weight properties, and lack of need for baking.

And in non-Halloween crafting projects, I'm finally starting on a quilt for my own bed. Modeled much after The Librarian's quilt, because I was jealous of how well that one turned out.