The eternal bonds of sisterhood

I mentioned last week, while I was in Bryan/College Station, Gulley and I went to visit our friend Tiff. What I failed to mention was that Tiff was in the process of baking 500 cookies. Because that’s what Tiff does. She bakes 500 cookies, manages her 4 kids, looks fabulous and makes it all look effortless.

As opposed to me, who burns Nestle Ultimates while yelling at my 4 year old to untie the dog from the patio furniture.

You say potato, I say po-tah-to.

Anyway, Tiff wasn’t baking 500 cookies for the heck of it. She has a cake and cookie business. I believe I’ve mentioned before that she brought a basket of the most gorgeous cookies to hand out to hospital personnel when she went in to deliver her 4th child this summer. Whatever. I totally let the nurse who took care of me after I had Caroline have a handful of my M&M’s right out of the bag. It’s pretty much the same thing.

Tiff explained that a sorority ordered the 500 cookies for part of their Rush Week activities. She couldn’t remember which sorority ordered the cookies, but we got into a conversation about the brief moment in time that I was a sorority girl. I never really was the sorority type and, at the time, the Greek system at A&M just wasn’t really a big deal. However, a bunch of my friends were going through rush, and I decided I should too.

And yes, if they had jumped off a cliff, I probably would have also. I was a bastion of security at 18.

The sorority thing was a short-lived love affair, largely due to the fact that I had a hard time taking the whole thing seriously. And once I went through initiation, which involved me reciting phrases that included the words “Lo, the sun”, it pretty much sealed the deal that sorority life was over for me. The problem was, in a moment of 18-year-old insanity, I had already agreed to live in the sorority house the following year.

So, when I informed the girls that I wanted to essentially quit the sorority, they told me I couldn’t because I had to live in the house. It was a situation fraught with the kind of drama that only people with too much time on their hands can create. I feel certain that their burning desire for me to live in the sorority house was based much more on the love of monthly dues, rather than their longing for me to remain a Delta Phi Zeta.

The Greek tragedy ended with my dad calling his attorney to see if there was a way to get me out of living in the house. Fortunately for me, the real estate laws were written for fools and 18 year olds, and anything signed by someone under 21 years of age wasn’t binding. Thus, I quit the sorority and was able to move into an apartment with my friends.

Anyway, Tiff and I were laughing about my illustrious career as a sorority girl and, needless to say, I haven’t stayed in touch with any of my former sisters.

The next day, Tiff went to deliver the cookies to the girls and said, “I never asked, what sorority are y’all?” They said, “Oh, we’re Delta Phi Zetas.” (Which isn’t a real sorority as far as I know, but I’m not using the real name for fear they might hunt me down and make me recite some solemn vows) Without thinking, Tiff said, “Oh, one of my very best friends was here yesterday and she was a Delta Phi Zeta.”

This revelation was met with squeals of excitement. The girls asked, “Where does she live?” and Tiff told them I lived in San Antonio. And in an unbelieveable coincidence, it turns out that the entire San Antonio branch of Delta Phi Zeta alumni was driving into College Station the next day to help with Rush Week activities. They asked Tiff if I was involved in the alumni group and, in the understatement of the year, she said, “No, I don’t think she is.”

Because sororities are funny about former members who once threatened them with a lawsuit.

A few hours later they called Tiff and wanted my name and number so they could contact me and get me involved. In other words, they’re looking for another sucker to come hang paper flower chains all over the living room of the sorority house for Rush Week.

Tiff reluctantly gave them my name and phone number because she didn’t know what else to do, but then they asked her what my maiden name was. She didn’t want to tell them, because she knew there was a good chance that they would look me up and find an old composite photo from 1990 that showed me with a big black X over my face with arrows pointing to me saying “She is dead to us.”

So, instead, she said the only thing she could think of at the time. “I can’t remember her maiden name.”

Because I am only one of her dearest, best friends. In fact, we are such great friends that we were bridesmaids in each other’s weddings and we’ve stayed in touch all these years.

No way she could be expected to remember my maiden name.

At this point, a week has gone by and I have yet to answer my phone and hear a perky sorority girl on the end of the line.

But I have my lawyer on retainer just in case.

Because not all sin is bad

I’ve gotten a few emails and comments in the last few days from people letting me know they thought I had taken a break from blogging because my feed wasn’t showing up in their Bloglines.

If you’re having that problem, you might want to check and make sure you’ve updated the feed to my new url, which is http://www.thebigmamablog.com or you can just click on the subscribe button in my sidebar. That way, you won’t have to spend countless hours of your day wondering if I have posted anything.

And for those of you who have asked, here is the recipe for Mississippi Sin Dip which, ironically, I got from Jennifer at Mississippi Girl.

Mississippi Sin Dip

1 loaf french bread
8 oz. container of french onion dip
4 oz. can green chiles, drained
1 package of bacon bits
2 cups grated cheddar cheese
8 oz. package of cream cheese, softened

And yes, all this cheese makes it seem very fattening, but think of all the calcium!

Plus, the bacon bits provide some protein.

Anyway, cut out top of french bread and scoop out insides. Mix all other ingredients together in a large bowl. Put the dip inside the loaf of french bread and put the top of bread back on. Wrap the whole thing in foil and bake 1 hour at 350. I personally love this served with Fritos Scoops, but it would be great with crackers too.

I can guarantee I’ll be making this a lot during college football season because watching the Aggies while eating fattening foods is what fall is all about.

Tremendous mass also refers to how much cookie dough I ate this weekend

Friday morning, P and I went to the doctor so that they could look at his incision and make sure everything was okay. The recovery from this surgery hasn’t been nearly as easy as his previous recoveries, so I’ve been a little concerned.

We met with the nurse and she told us that everything he’s experiencing is normal. In fact, she said every day the herniated disc was putting pressure on his nerve equals a week of recovery. So, good news! Recovery should only last about 33 weeks, which is about the same amount of time it takes me to balance our checkbook.

She also read the doctor’s report from P’s surgery. She said (and I quote) “Patient had a tremendous mass of spinal material removed”. I’m no medical expert, but I feel fairly certain that the words TREMENDOUS MASS in reference to any medical condition are just not good. Like P said, “If they removed a tremendous mass, how much do I have left?”

So, after having the fear of God and spinal fusion drilled into us, we left the office and headed home. The good news is I get to keep putting P’s socks and shoes on him for at least the next month and, fingers crossed, I may get to cut his toenails.

It’s really everything I imagined as I stood at the altar and pledged to be his for all eternity.

As for the rest of the weekend, my friend Jen came in town for a visit. Friday night, all the girls went out for Mexican food and Jen surprised us by bringing a cake to celebrate all the summer birthdays in the group. We ate huge bowls of guacamole, enjoyed a few margaritas, laughed until we cried and then, the band started up.

Nails scraping on a chalkboard are less annoying than this band. And really, I’m using the term “band” lightly. There were maracas, drums and LOUD, LOUD singing. We were literally screaming at each other and couldn’t hear a word. The final straw was when they sang a cover of “Smooth” that would have made Carlos Santana and Rob Thomas curl up in the fetal position. Needless to say, we asked for the check and got out before our ears started to bleed.

Saturday night we all went over to Gulley’s and ate a spread of food that can only be described as health-free. It was essentially the bizarro equivalent of the Atkins Diet. There wasn’t a protein to be found, not even a summer sausage. We had Mississippi Sin Dip, Fritos, cheese and crackers, chips and salsa, and topped it off with this.

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In case y’all can’t tell, that’s a large bowl of chocolate chip cookie dough with four spoons. Otherwise known as magic in a bowl.

I’m not even lying a little when I tell y’all that I finally had to put a piece of gum in my mouth to keep me from eating anymore.

I’m not proud to say that, 5 minutes later, I spit out my gum so that I could have another bite.

And one last note from the weekend. Look who learned to ride her bicycle.

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She’s getting so big.

I wonder if I can teach her how to cut P’s toenails.