We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature--trees, flowers, grass--grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence...We need silence to be able to touch souls. --Mother Teresa

Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year.....

May your 2011 burn brightly and be everything you wish it to be!

And yes.  I got a fire pit for Christmas...from my children.  I have been wanting a fire pit for a very long time.  I would look at them every time we went somewhere fire pits were sold.  Now I have my very own. 

And we have lit it twice.  But haven't made s'mores.  Maybe tonight at midnight...Just Sayin'.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Food on Friday

Try to be surprised.  Food on Friday revolves around My Favorite Third Child, AGAIN this week.  Suddenly, we've become all about her.  This has to stop.  She's really not all that and a bag of chips, but the rest of us will eat anything.

Last spring sometime, she was watching some Disney show (blech) and saw this:

Yep.  It's what you think it is.  Spaghetti tacos.  (And look, there's someones gross ABC gum....so sorry.)   So we laughed at her and said that spaghetti tacos were dumb.  But she was persistent (as always) and kept at us.  So finally one night we pulled taco shells out and had them with spaghetti. 

Turns out the girl was spot on with this meal.  Spaghetti tacos are very good.  Don't ask me why, how, what, or who thought this up, but it really is good.  That crunchy corn flavor goes wonderfully with the spaghetti flavor. 

She had a little dinner party and served them to her friends.  They gave her the business until they'd eaten them and then they were amazed. 

So here's the basics....make spaghetti.  Warm up taco shells.  I put my cheese in the shell and then add the spaghetti and maybe a little more cheese.  Eat like a taco.  Throw a salad together and some fruit and you've got a meal.  Just sayin'.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


1. What does it mean to have the 'holiday spirit'?
Just last night someone asked if I was ready for Christmas and I replied...Yep.  And then he said, "So your shopping is all done?"  Nope.  I have bought one thing and made another.  "Christmas happens whether there are gifts or not."  He was very puzzled by this statement.  The greatest gift cannot be bought.......
2. What sits atop your tree (s)? Why?
Stars.  Because.  I.  Said.  So.

3. When was the last time you gave yourself a pat on the back?
Tuesday when I didn't curse out loud.   Although I am sure it was written all over my face.   Third graders are quick like that...they know what I am thinking and just move away. 
4. Which of your senses is most sensitive this time of year?
My feeling senses.  As we get nearer to Christmas I become very aware of the children I am sending home who may have little or nothing to eat.  I am always concerned about the kids I am sending home to negative circumstances.  I hug them all on the way out and let them know that I will be very glad to see them 'next year'.  I think this is a really tough time of the year to be a hurting kid. 

5. What do you have too much of in your kitchen?
Me.  There's too much of me in the kitchen.

6. What do you do for meals on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day? Big meal? Breakfast tradition? Open the cookie tins and have at it?
Before we ever had kids, we established that they would be at home on Christmas morning.  We are lucky because both our families live within a couple of hours of us.  We have been at home every Christmas morning for 20 years.  We would get up and open presents, have cinnamon rolls, sausage and juice.   And head out for KC.   My husband's uncle is a priest, so he says a family mass at the house, usually around 1 pm.   Our presents have always been brought by Santa and so they 'appeared' sometime after the kids went to bed.  We opened presents whenever the first person woke up.  We've opened them at 3 am and at 8 am.  Last year we changed up our tradition.  We had dinner and then opened presents.  This year we are planning to attend the Christmas Eve service at church, have dinner and open presents.  
7. What is the best thing about winter?
When it's over.
8. Insert your own random thought here--Whomever invented the stomach flu ought to be shot.  Just sayin'.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Food on Friday

My friend Cindy and I share recess duty.  Daily recess duty.  I know everyone thinks that teachers stand around during recess duty talking about....well, recipes.  Isn't that what everyone does during recess duty?  Talk about what we're having for dinner and how to make it? 

You know how my favorite third child...
 .....has an unnatural love for cabbage but hates meatballs? Well, Cindy has been telling me for awhile about how she makes bierock filling with sausage instead of beef and then serves it over rice.  No kidding.

So I made it.  And guess what?  My favorite third child didn't really like it.  She doesn't really like sausage unless it's in gravy.  Did I  mention that she puts gravy in a bowl like it's soup and eats it?  Really.  Seriously. 

The rest of us did like it, though.

I put mine on my plate like this.....and then added some pepper jack cheese and a tortilla.

 My favorite third child put ranch dressing on hers....

 My husband made his like this.....

I have no idea why I don't have pictures of my favorite sons plate.  Probably because food doesn't last very long on his plate so I don't have any photo ops. 

This is a very versatile recipe.  I probably won't make it with sausage again.  Sausage and cabbage were a little rough on my delicate stomach.  I really liked it with the rice and pepper jack cheese.  I know that by putting it in a tortilla was a double starch and then adding tater tots was another but you know what?  Warm starch with melted dairy will make anything better. 

Here's the basic recipe......brown one pound of sausage and onion.  How much onion?  As much as your people like.  Cut up a head of cabbage.  Place cabbage on top of browned sausage/onion and put the lid on the skillet.  Let it steam to your preference.  We like it a little bit crunchy.  Meanwhile, make your rice.  We make old fashioned rice.  Warm tortillas, shred cheese and make some sort of side dish.  Viola!  You've got dinner!  Just sayin'.



Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Have you ever been on a real sleigh ride? How about the warm weather version - a carriage ride?
Nope.  And I am not going anytime soon.  
2. What's your policy on 'chain mail'...you know, the emails you receive that are often some sort of poem/blessing/good wish that ask you to send it on to 10 or 12 friends? Do you delete without opening, read and trash, read and trash and then worry you won't be blessed/lucky/protected? Do you delete the sender from your contacts or just go ahead and send the love onward?
Read and Delete.  Most of the time.  Unless it's really good, then I delete it as well.
3. Who is your favorite character in any of the Christmas movies and why?
Ralphie from A Christmas Story.  He's just so...well...typical boy.  
4. Share a favorite quote.
What comes around goes around.  My mom always used those words to comfort me.....and as usual, she.  was.  right.  The go around part isn't so fun, though.  I must say after getting a couple of go arounds in the not-so-recent past, I am much more careful with my words and actions.  Hard to believe, but very true. 
5. What's your favorite holiday scent?
Clean laundry.  Because having all the laundry clean is an official holiday, right?
6. Does the Christmas season stress you out? In what way?
7. What's the best thing about your life right now?
My heating pad.  I get great comfort from knowing that each night when I get into bed, I am going to lay on that heating pad.  And I don't share.  Don't touch it for any reason. 
8. Insert your own random thought here.
I believe that there are some people out there who do not realize that I hold the power.  

Just sayin'.

Your own soul is nourished when you are kind, but you destroy yourself when you are cruel. -Proverbs 11: 17