Sunday, May 30, 2010

Build your owns... what do you do...

Answer me these four things please. With summer here, there will be a lot of build your owns. Ahhhhhhh, what is that? What is I referring to. I like to bbq a lot during the summer to keep the house cool. With that in mind, we do a lot of carne asada on the grill.... (to die for... for sure)!!!! Be we also do a lot of grilled chicken breasts and hamburgers, and eat them with a salad. With this in mind... tell me what is on your build your owns...

Me... let my opinion count please as I have some gained poundage that should carry some clout around this place....

Burger! For my favorite... I would say...

Hamburger patty cooked medium. (yes I am well aware of the dangers... thank you... grinning)
sauteed mushrooms and onions
pepper jack cheese... (is it pepper jack, or pepperjack???)
raw red onion
and A1 sauce..... mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm...... so good....

My chicken sandwich

Chicken breast grilled... (I will like this one well thank you very much)
Pepperjack... (since I spelled it pepper jack last time, just putting a little excitement into this)

Salad... (I am the salad Goddess of Salem is all I have to say on this one~ BEWARE)

I like a combo of spinach leaves and bib lettuce. It has to be fresh, fresh, fresh!!!

Then add the following
Diced or cherry tomatoes
Avocados... (a staple in my kitchen)
Honey roasted sunflower seeds (notice I said honey roasted, it is the key here)
Dried craisins
Sometimes a few dried cherries
Diced pear
Sliced red onion
and... add a sweet dressing like poppy seed or mango... something exotic perhaps...
OH.... and crisp bacon bits... no imitation, slap that bacon on the rack and broil it til it is crisp and crumple it up... add a few croutons. So good....

A few salads I am fond of as well that I make...

Spinach with fresh strawberries, mandarin oranges, boiled egg wedges, red onion slices, crumbled up bacon, mushrooms and sprouts... the big ones, not the little wimpy angel hair kind. I also like to add honey roasted sunflower seeds or almonds to my spinach salad.

Broccoli salad...

Chinese chicken salad...

Southwestern Ceasar Salad


Friday, May 28, 2010

Red Beans and Rice so good...

Not too often do I just love something from a fast food chain, that makes me want to eat it often. I must tell you that I have to resist turning into Popeye's chicken each time I pass it due to my fixation of their red beans and rice. AUHHHHHHH.... and if I do pass it, I want to do a u-turn to get me back. I like them that much! NO JOKE. So I have dabbled a bit and have come up with my own version. I am thinking I am pretty close.... but... would still stop there anytime for them.

I just cook my rice in a rice cooker and I add a little bit more water than usual... as I like our rice kind of sticky for this recipe. I add half water and half chicken broth as I just like that flavor, and I also add about a half tsp of garlic powder to the broth mixture and about 2 TBLS of butter. (And I wonder why my butt is so... just forget it...)

2 cans of red beans (don't drain)
1 can kidney beans (drain but reserve the liquid)
4 shakes of tabasco (more if you are daring)
1/2 tsp cumin
1 1/2 capfuls of liquid smoke
1 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbls. butter
1/2 tsp. pepper

Pour everything into your pot that you are going to cook with. Stir and let boil for approximately 10 minutes.
I smash mine with a potato masher. Some people like to keep all the beans whole. I do not. I like to smash them as when you do the beans become starchy and will start to thicken on their own. I turn the heat down to medium at this point of them cooking.

I smash about half to three forths of the beans and let them simmer for about 20 minutes or so. They thicken as they cook so you need to be careful and continue to strir now and then so they don't burn... (another reason to turn them down. Serve over rice.

I serve mine with enchiladas and corn... but also with fried chicken and macaroni. I do make a mean macaroni too... so my kids say. Five kinds of cheese... again another reason my butt grows.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Homemade Guacamole... YUM!!!

2 ripe avacados (not too ripe, you don't want them mushy)
1 roma tomato diced
1 tsp minced garlic
1/2 small onion diced
splash lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
three shakes of tabasco sauce
1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup of sour cream

I smash my avocado with an old pastry blender. I want chunks left in my guacamole, but some do not. I then add all ingredients except for the sour cream and lemon juice. Mix well.

At this point stir in your lemon juice to keep it from turning brown.

Add in your sour cream... you will not taste the sour cream flavor, but it will help give you more guacamole and not be so expensive. It makes it creamier as well and more appealing to the eye. I also learned a trick from my sister. Store the pits from the avocado in the guacamole and it will keep it green longer.

Enjoy. Disclaimer... I was making up measurements. Play around with this... this is a basic recipe but I don't do measurements well... ha.... just keep playing with it to tweek it to your liking.

Can there be Asian Princesses??

There isn't a ton of things in life that bother me. Well... I am wrong... there are a few. One of them is the fact that people think that I adopted my daughter. Don't get me wrong here folks... I stand behind adoption 100%, and feel that people are so blessed that adoption is available for people. Heck, there may be a day that I want to adopt. I would not mind another child. I wouldn't mind a playmate for Car... but, for now... I enjoy her completely. When we went to see G in the hospital after his surgery, there was a little lady standing in the elevator. She looked at Car and looked at me and said, *where did you get her?* Come on now!!!!!???? REALLY??? I smiled politely and said, I don't understand. (I really did understand, just playing stupid in hopes she would get my point if she listened to her words... PS... I don't like playing stupid) She smiled and said, my niece is from China, where did you get her? At those moments, I wish to God something smart and witty would just fall out of my mouth... but I feel at a loss at those moments. At least they don't think that I am her grandma any longer and that Amanda is her mom. REALLY???? HA!

What this woman doesn't understand that she is sending a message to my daughter that she stands out in a crowd or does not belong. That could be in such a manner as she doesn't look like me... or... it is obvious that she is Asian American. To me that is rude. I simply think it is uncalled for. On that, I could say that she was elderly. I did not however, point out the fact that she was elderly. It is just life, we are who we are... you know what I mean???

So... for the record... My daughter is Asian American. I am the proud mother of a little girl that is Asian American. I gave birth to my daughter. I can tell you the story of my labor with her... how they took her over a month early thinking I was having a stroke... or how I knew it would be a normal birth since I had normal (vaginal... can I say vaginal in a blog? I guess so... GRIN) birth so when they told me not to eat anything while in labor I didn't listen. I was sending my two older kids to the little snack bar to buy me food and crystal light. It was super bowl Sunday so it was easy to eat the food with nobody noticing as they were ignoring me and watching a football game in my room.... no problem... more food for me. Fruit Loops and crystal light. After 13 being induced at 7am in the morning and being in labor all day and no progression of her being born, even after popping the water bag, they came in when they saw that my bp was stroke level, and they said I would be holding my baby within 30 minutes and then the room filled with people prepping me while my husband went to gown up. I was trying to calm the older kids, especially Amanda, as they really wanted to be there when she was born... something they looked forward to for months... and now ... THIS? Poor kids... and all I kept thinking is Holy Crud... I just ate fruit loops all day long. What the heck am I going to do.... they are surely going to know. OOOOOOHHHHH... stop.... I am sitting here talking to you in an elevator, and don't even really know you... must I feel the need to tell you the story of my birth... or how we had to stay for nearly two weeks as she was in ICU and stopped breathing one night... etc.... ah.... just forget it.

The fact of the matter is... plain and simple... I married a man that is Japanese American. That is where she gets the coloring of her skin, and her cute eyes shaped differently than mine, and that long silky black hair. Her nose is not long and thin like mine... is is cute... like a little button. But if you must know... she looks a lot like me at that age too, despite the obvious, she still looks like me. In fact she looks more like me than the older two, who are not Asian American. Go figure.

This now brings me to a story that still makes me teary. For sis's first birthday we were meeting a lot of people for dinner at Kwon's for dinner. We were so excited. People were invited... presents bought... we were anticipating the great day. I went to Costco to order her a cake. They do make the best cakes you know... you must try one if you have not... my favorite is the carrot cake... so good. So... we looked though the cake designes... and there it was...what I needed... a princess cake. Our daughter, the princess needed a princess cake. I stood by the side for a moment trying to get an employees attention. He came over. I asked how I would write it in the form for them to understand that I wanted the frosting tinted to a light brown color and the hair to be black. He said very matter of factly... we don't do that. I said, surely you could do that... you have chocolate frosting just add a smidgen of it into the frosting to make it look darker... easy peasy mac and cheesy as Carlie would say. He said, no, we don't do that. I said, I want to have this princess cake for my daughter's birthday and you will not make it resemble her even a little bit???? I left there defeated.

G did a lot of research in our area, which was not difficult due to his position. He found the number of people in our community that are of color. Not a large percentage but significant enough for them to meet the needs of them as well. Come on, not only are we all consumers, but we are all people... humans... equality... or am I wrong here? Am I way off base? He sent the letter in to the founder and CEO of Costco. He immediately got ahold of G and told him that this is not a way that Costco conducts business and that he would make sure that the situation is resolved by having the manager of our Costco call and fix the situation. He did within a day or two. G put me on the phone to talk to him since G was not there when this happened. He asked me... was there not a color on the color chart that matched her skin close enough. WHAT??? Are you kidding... what color chart. I was not told of a color chart. This is frustrating now. He explained that what should have happened is a color chart should have been presented and we could choose from that what color was best. WELL Fantastic. That is what we wanted... to make sure that princesses didn't just have to come in the form of being caucasion. We were satified with this. This one man made a mistake... not Costco corporation. Fast forward to the following years. I am shopping for her birthday cake... Costco really does have the best cakes... lol.... and I ask for the color chart... they all look at me like I am crazy. Back to the drawing board. UHHHHHH....

Let me close this by simply saying... I gave birth to my daughter... read previous paragraphs... and... she is my little princess, as you don't have to be caucasion to be a princess....

Monday, May 24, 2010

Smiles and Miracle Mondays...

Time for a blog hop on what made you smile!!!! Many people don't like Mondays... ***Capeesh*** so I thought Mondays would be a good day on our new blog for others to post either a photo or perhaps a blog entry they ran across this week that they would like to share. We all need smiles... and the more we share the better we feel... so go ahead... share your smiles with us today. And for me I will add some photos I ran across last night while looking and clearing some old photo cards getting them ready for the coast.

We teach our kids that *Ohana* aka *family* goes beyond blood lines.
These photos make me smile as Carlie has grown so much in the past year. These are some special people in her love line, Ohana.
Scott and Car and a spring function at the college. Nicole teaching Car new tricks... hah... caught again. Sabrina and Carlie playing... Carlie is Sabrina's mini me I think. Carlie with her third favorite guy (after her dad and brother) Kevin... (she still thinks she will marry him one day. HA We still laugh to hear her say it.) Car and her Auntie Terrie (Carlie's Godmother and a spectacular woman and nobody will ever take the place of her kindness and caring she shows Carlie). and Carlie with her good friend on stage at the luau. She pulled Carlie on stage to hula last year and this is her telling Carlie she won the contest. So precious.

So give me your smiles from last week. It can be articles... or posts... or recipes... Can't wait!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Bacon and Zucchini Stir Fry

I really love G's mom. She is the sweetest lady and a fantastic cook still and she is in her 80's. She puts so much love in her food and has for years. This is one of the things she taught me to cook. It is one of my favorites to cook for the kids. Aside from the bacon it is so healthy. HA... but the bacon is what makes it so good. Dang! There are no exact measurements on it either so anything goes. My kind of recipe... and often why blogging is hard for me... I just throw things together a lot with no attention to how much I put in of an ingredient. Anyhow... enjoy... so good... and the veggies are so abundant during the summer months.

Bacon and Zucchini Stirfry:

6 to 8 slices of bacon cut into pieces
1 tsp minced fresh garlic
salt and pepper to taste
1 large onion
10 mushrooms
3 zucchini
1 yellow squash
fresh diced tomatoes

Place the bacon, garlic and onion in the pan to cook. I like to cook it well enough to be edible at that point but still limp.

I then add the zucchini, yellow squash, and mushrooms. My squash is cut in medium size medallions as if they are too thin they will get soggy and not so good for my taste buds. If too thin, the mushrooms will overcook while you wait for the squash to finish. No good either... Stir fry this until desired doneness of he squash, while adding salt and pepper to taste. Turn heat completely off at this point and add add the fresh tomatoes. Serve. This is a great dish.

Could this be a sickness????

I always prepare more than enough for dinner. That is for sure. If anyone is to stop by we would easily be able to feed them. Due to me liking to entertain, I have so many plates. We have had very LARGE crowds before, for holiday and for summer bbq's. LARGE crowds... ha! And we have never one time, not had enough plates. I have three sets of dishes in my cupboards. Oh my... perhaps it is too many!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

German Chocolate Upside Down Cake

When G had his birthday he had just gotten out of the hospital. We did take him to Olive Garden but he wasn't able to eat much. Today I made my promise to Carlie and made his birthday for him. I had to go to the grocery store... which seems like a small task...but when you have a daughter who lollygags... and gets distracted... it is a long process. I also cooked with her which is priceless, but also slows me down. All in all, I would rather be cooking with her at a slower pace than not cooking with her. So.... it all works out and we had a lot of laughs and giggles today... (and I only pulled out one handful of my hair)... KIDDING!!!

The site for the day... See Jane in the kitchen. I used two of her recipes today... perfect for us... check her out... great site...

Find the recipe here... German Chocolate Upside Down Cake

The cake is like a southern butter gooey cake recipe I have from Paula Dean, just a little different. It is superb and you will love it. It is a moist cake with a crust that is hard... but... it is perfect!!! Enjoy!!!!

German Chocolate Upside Down Cake

1 german cake mix, prepared according to box directions
1 cup coconut
2 cups chopped pecans... I used walnuts... always love walnuts...
1 cup melted butter
1 pound powdered sugar
8 ounces cream cheese
1. Spread greased 9x13 pan with 1 cup coconut and 2 cups (or so, depending on preference) chopped pecans.

2. Prepare german cake mix according to directions and pour over nuts and coconut.

3. Mix butter, powdered sugar and cream cheese together and pour over cake. Swirl with knife.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Perfect with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

This is after pouring cake batter over coconut and walnuts.

Putting the cream cheese, powdered sugar and butter on cake mix.

Marbling the cream cheese mix into the cake...

Right out of the oven... smells so very good...

Ready to eat. It is so very good... to die for...

Potato Fingers

My grandpa tried to convince us when we were little that potatoes were the most universal food and could be prepared so many ways. Maybe this is where the carb obsession grew for me. I to this day find comfort in mashed potatoes... mmmmmmmm.... and loaded baked potatoes might be considered a best friend if I really wanted to go there... So today I ran into a recipe at a website and had to try it. It was a tad different than a recipe I already had for these, but I like variety... so I gave it a try.

Her blog is here and you must check it out It is called See Jane in the kitchen

The recipe is called potato skins

Enjoy... so very good. She has another recipe that I tried out that is similar to a southern gooey butter cake. You will love it... I will be visiting her often.

Potato fingers

8- 10 small baking potatoes, baked
3 TBS. oil
2 TBS. fresh grated parmesan cheese
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp seasoned salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder (I added this... not in original recipe) always a need for bad breath
1/4 tsp black pepper
grated cheese
sliced green onions
sour cream

Cut baked potatoes in half and scoop out the middle then cut them in half again so each potato will make four skins. In a bow, mix oil, cheese and seasonings. Brush the skins with the oil mixture on both sides. Bake in a 475 degree oven for 7 minutes, remove from oven, turn over the potatoes and bake for 7 more minutes. Take out of oven and top with cheese and bacon, bake for another minute or two. Remove from oven and top with onions and sour cream.

The best shimp dip...

One of the greatest inventions by man is......... CREAM CHEESE! I can't get enough of the stuff... and you will see it in my home at ALL times. All of my family (with the exception of Amanda, and she is picky about sooooo many foods...) loves seafood as well. So this is one of our favorites. I first had this in the eighth grade when my Aunt Linda took it to the Lilac Parade on an outing with my folks... NO KIDS allowed... yet, she sent the left overs home with my mom. I think it is best served with wheat thins, yet, I think wheat thins are the second greatest invention by man... maybe.

Enjoy this recipe.

Easiest and best shrimp dip.

2 80z pkg cream cheese
1 can of olives drained and chopped
1 can of tiny shrimp drained
3 green onions or scallions chopped, greens only

Mix all ingredients and serve with assorted crackers... OR... WHEAT THINS... pure heaven. If you want to be lazy and have a kitchen aid mixer, I don't even chop the olives. I just put them in and turn it on high with the whisk and it chops them while it mixes the dip for you. From time to time I put a dash or two of pepper sauce in it... just to get people dancing!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Ah.... graduation time...and a craft to do...

This is what I started with....

This evening Carlie and I are going to a graduation party for her pre school teachers son. I met her teacher, Ms. Diane (fabulous lady with the kiddos and kind to people... very active in our community) through an autism group she had years ago... well two years ago. Her son, is autistic as well. She really put a lot of time and energy into the groups and would have guest speakers to come and talk to us about autism. Cory Dunn was one of the speakers and was Brilliant. Anyhow... tonight is Devin's Bday and graduation party. I am glad we get to attend. It is very touching. He is a very sweet young man and she has done a very good job with him. She is going to glow with pride. Anyhow... not knowing what to get him... I thought I would make him something. I took a class on this long ago... then taught classes on it. I have 90% of this done but will need to get a photo of Diane and her son tonight and, one with him and his friends... and I will add them. For tonight... he gets it like this... and he will get the finished project on Tuesday. I wanted to show you before I add the photos to protect his identity.

This is an altered canvas frame. It is something to hang on the wall. It is hard to find boy colors when it is not your own boy. I have made one for Tay in the past with waves and surfboards... but not for someone elses teen.
mixing paint...
Picking out paper


I picked out the word LOVE and Story.... as we all need to be loved... and we all have a story. I antiqued the words... to make it match a boy theme of colors.... We are slipping a $50 in the little envelope. Hope he enjoys. Tell me what you think but be gentle.

Oh my my... how I love coffee....

This may seem like nothing to you... but to me a masterpiece. Look at this... about 100 creamers of all different flavors. This is a large tupperware container... you know the kind you use for salad makings or tacos... etc. It looks small, but it is quite large. It looks like there is not a lot, but there are many... many... many creamers here. Why is this my obsession for the moment... shall I even say?

Why girls weekend of course...
There will be a lot of ladies there... and I know that there are some of us that love coffee... (me raising my hand and waving it high) along with some others as well. I want to make sure we have plenty of variety of course. So... since February or so... (Perhaps it was January)... each time I go into a convenient store to but coffee (I am the only one in my house that drinks coffee... G hates it... and Carlie would totally drink it as she loves the smell and the process of adding, stirring etc... but I keep telling her it will stunt her growth... In reality I have been told it would calm her... I doubt it....... so... I only have a huge coffee maker... so I just go to the convenient store to buy the coffee...IN A HUGE MUG.... Like three cups of coffee worth... so good) I pick up an extra creamer or two. I put them on top of my coffee lid... so I really am not stealing them. I am paying what they tell me to. The creamer is included with the coffee price... correct??? So this is the collection for the beach weekend thus far. If you think about it... this is only like 7 each... and we will have Saturday and Sunday for breakfast... and maybe ladies will want coffee with dessert... so I am behind the game. HA!

I just hope I don't go to hell for this one.... dang! So what is your favorite creamer? OH... and I started buying individual packs of tea at Winco in the bulk food. Gawsh I love that place. So if the ladies love tea... go for it... (I do too... ) but... it will leave more creamer for me. AND... there better not be one creamer left by the time we leave... If I go to hell for this... you all better enjoy!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

57 Days to PURE HEAVEN... girls weekend

There are many things I am blessed for in life. Family and friends. THE BEST KIDS!!! Loving to look back and seeing I am still standing, not always strong, but STILL STANDING! What could be better?

It is also exciting that I live near one of the most beautiful coastlines. It is so nice to drive over, if even for only a day and spend the day at the coast. I take that for granted at times I suppose. There is nothing like smelling the ocean and having the sun on our face, and shoulders with my toes dug in the sand.

This summer I get this and MORE! I get to have a great group of gals that are going to be joining me at the coast for the weekend. Some I have known since grade school. One I have known since Hawaii. One I used to share a locker with in high school. Some that I have recently gotten to know through other friends. Some were Shadle Highlanders and some were Mead Panthers. One used to laugh at me often and would get me to do silly things such as rub hot pepper in my eye (a hot pepper from our teacher's plant) so I could get out of class. (I did this for months). I am so excited to spend time with them and just getting away from it all.
These photos are actually from nearby Newport which is about a 20 minute drive from Lincoln City where we will be staying. Still... this is the coast. I plan on driving into Newport for a couple of hours on one of the days. I will squeeze it in... as it is a fun little town and I have great memories here... with many friends that have joined me and my family. PS.... Mo's is a kick and don't listen to people that think any different. I have always had fun there... cheap food that is relatively good. They karaoke there on the weekends and the DJ does a great job... he has a great voice too.

I won't be crabbing this time... although I love to go crabbing. It is so relaxing. I love to do night crabbing out on the dock when it is more private. You hear the fog horns... and the sea lions swimming around trying to get my crabs out of my nets. You hear the waves in the bay crashing against the rocks. I have had great luck at night crabbing too... mostly because there is not a lot of other nets out so crabs head to your bait instead of having to choose where to go.

I am sure that there will be salt water taffy and caramel corn bought sometime on the trip. The caramel corn has nothing on Paula... (her recipe packed 10 lbs on my rear this winter I would say with much reluctance to admit).

We are going to have wonderful food... and a lot of great memories of our girls weekend on the coast. Did I mention that our house has a hot tub... yes... a hot tub. AHHHH... and our house is a six minute walk from the casino and about two blocks from the beach. We are going to be spoiled for sure.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Raisin Bran Muffins (3 week muffins)

Today is wet and gloomy. Oh yah! I am from Oregon where we don't tan, we rust!!! Some days when it is rainy I want a comfort food. One of the reasons my butt refuses to stop growing. With that being said... I wanted to make Carlie some muffins today for when she returns from preschool. I also will want to make a plate for Amanda's apartment and some to take over to Taylor... so we use the batter up right away although it makes up four dozen pretty much. I wonder, do they have as much fun getting little surprise treats as much as I have making and planning them for them? I doubt it!!! That is ok though... I like doing it anyhow.

These muffins are great tasting! No kidding!!! Who knew I would reach an age where I would want to talk about bran cereal? (ps... the doctors love when we eat bran... it is a fiber... GRIN... ;) ) So the great thing about these is that you can make them and keep the batter up to three weeks in the fridge. That is great! Nothing like one coming out of the oven when a slab of butter drenched on it... ( reason number two for my butt growing!) Anyhow.... this is made with all staple foods pretty much. So you don't have to run to google, for those that are like me on measurements, a quart is 4 cups. I also don't buy buttermilk... I make my own... you know... milk with lemon juice... it will turn into buttermilk just like that!!!! These will make about four dozen. I use my demarl muffin tray so no oil or spraying... they pop right out...

Before I post this recipe... I must tell you... I have watched three episodes of baby story today. I am a basketcase! I can't let my daughter know or she will surely not let me in the delivery room with her come September... so this is just between us!!!! I will bring some of these muffins to tempt her or bribe her though...

On to the muffins...

Raisin Bran Muffins

15 oz. raisin bran cereal
1 c. oil
3 c. sugar
5 c. flour
5 t. baking soda
4 eggs
2 t. salt
1 quart buttermilk

Mix all ingredients. It makes a huge batch. This can be stored as a batter in the refridgerator for up to 3 weeks. You can make one muffin at a time, or a dozen, it is up to you. Bake at 400* for 20 minutes

Enjoy... and know these are addicting!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Whitney Houston - I'm Every Woman

This is to all of us!!! We can do anything that we set our minds to... and we can't let anyone think any differently.

Celebrating Friendships and Passions... please join us...

My name is Wendy. I know that I am pretty blessed by the friendships that I have. A lot of my friends, I have had since grade school. That is sometimes difficult as I am so far from them now. (Thank goodness for facebook).

I realize that many times in my life, it is my friends that help me through most of my struggles by just listening or being supportive. It is like having a bunch of sisters. I love my kids dearly but can't tell them all that I tell girlfriends. I take different things from each of them. They each mean something different to me... and I love that as well.

Come on the journey of friendships and love... of our passions. Bookmark us and come back OFTEN. We each will be sharing different things with you. You are always welcome here... pull up a seat and lets get down to business. The ladies will be introducing themselves and what they hope to contribute to the table. You will see yourself in at least one of us... perhaps a little bit of all of us.