a list

I have so many things to write about that I made a list. But the list is so long that it daunts me. So I’m skipping out entirely and doing a new, off-the-top-of-my-head list.

1. The other day my brother asked my younger son this question: if you could see either Jesus or Obama, who would you choose?

“Jesus,” my younger son promptly replied.

Just as I was getting ready to ask why, he yelled, “No! Wait! Obama! Because if I see Jesus, that means I’m dead!”

2. You know what I can’t get here? Real vanilla. There are cheap vanilla flavorings, flavorings that are way cheaper than our cheap vanilla extracts in the states. Like, fifty cents for a big ol’ bottle of brown stuff that stains my fingers like tobacco juice. Not that I’ve ever stained my fingers with tobacco juice…

Actually, I have found real vanilla extract. It was in the fancy grocery store in Coban. Silly me bought one little (super expensive) bottle because I made the assumption (which, in situations such as these, I always pronounce ass-sue-nump-shun) that because the store was selling it, therefore the store carried it. WRONG.

This is a new concept to me. In the States, if a store carries an item, it will be there so money-wielding patrons can purchase it. And if, by chance, they are out, then a near identical item can be found in the surrounding shelves, just with a different brand. And if, for some odd reason, the other four variations of the same item are also not there, then I can ask a store worker to rummage in the back of the store. And if that doesn’t work, then I can ask the store to special order it for me, or at least give me a rain check. And if that’s not good enough, I can always hop in my van and drive to one of the other six large grocery stores in my town and look there.

I’m just a wee-bit dismayed.

Also, I have yet to find a steady source of bread flour.

A Real Vanilla-Less Baker (who is actually surviving just fine)

3. I read this post first thing this morning and it made me very, very happy. Practically gleeful.

4. I read this article (the tip-off link came from the aforementioned blog) a few days ago, then emailed the link to some family and friends, then made my brother and husband read it, and then read it out loud to the children (while my brother and husband listened) because it is fascinating.

5. This is my husband, a.k.a. The Mama’s Minutia Blog Filter, giving me “The Look.”

(Except usually “The Look” doesn’t include a smile.)

Because I tend to say whatever pops into my mind, and because he’s routinely horrified at the things that come out of my mouth, he proofs almost every one of my posts before I hit publish.

Usually, he just grunts his approval or mumbles something vague and entirely not pride-inducing, such as, It’s fine, and then I shriek, That’s all? Come on! It’s A-MAY-ZUH-ZING! and then he rolls his eyes and says, Sure, whatever, and then I kick him out of my desk chair so I can sulk in peace. So when he reads a post and then says, Um…, I pay attention and you all reap the benefits.

(Psst! Notice the gray hair. Gray hair on men is extremely sexy, me thinks. Can I get an amen?)

6. Right now my husband—oh husband of the graying temples—is on a bus on his way back from Guatemala City. He and my brother left our house this morning at 3:15 so my brother could catch his 11:30 flight back to the big bad states. They got to the airport at 9 am, and my husband, after doing a bit of poking around town, caught the noon bus back. He’ll be home in time for supper. The reason I’m writing this is so that you know that if, by chance, you should decide to come visit us, you can make it from your front door to our front door in one single solitary day which means, obviously, we’re practically neighbors!


  • the domestic fringe

    Hey, I make vanilla extract, the real stuff, and I'd be happy to mail you a bottle if you give me your address. You can email me at tricia9199 at yahoo dot com.

    • Jennifer Jo

      Tricia, you are so sweet! I bet your vanilla is delicious, but really, there is no need to mail some. There is vanilla in this country—I just need to find it and then buy a whole bunch real quick. Plus, as I'll be teaching baking classes, I need to push myself to use local ingredients—the locals certainly won't be using the real stuff in their baking, so I need to take that into account when I plan the recipes. I just miss having the real stuff at my fingertips…

  • Rachelle

    Oh lord, that bug blog. It is SO FULL OF NOPE.

    You were right though, the other article was just fascinating! I really enjoyed the read.

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