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Dear friends and family,
When you come to visit and you think that I cook a lot while you are here, please realize that it is not really that unusual. I cook a lot more often than not. My boys routinely invite their friends over and that usually involves cooking…especially around their birthdays. I believe that for TJ’s and Tyler’s birthdays I made platters of sushi and boneless buffalo wings. There have been 12 layer birthday cakes and 12 pounds of ravioli which enabled me to use the bowl specifically reserved for our friend Lou’s cooking when he visits.
Tonight, we hosted the physics class for baked ziti, meatballs, homemade bread and chocolate croissants. Before you get too excited and have some type of breakdown (as I did when I was first asked to host the entire physics class for a pre-exam study session), the class is small, only about 8 kids, so it is by far not as monumental as it sounds.
Easily when my oldest invites “some” friends over, it could be at least twice that many. I love to cook and I love to see people enjoy the food, so it’s all good…..and it’s great to have all their friends come and visit.
This afternoon, thinking that we might have company for dinner, with family arriving later and a potential poker night in the mix with the boys, I put up some sauce, made meatballs and did bracciole. I haven’t made bracciole in a really long time so I was really looking forward to it.
We didn’t get the company yet, they hit traffic and the poker night didn’t materialize either after the day was spent on the mountain.
But, hey, we had bracciole and meatballs for dinner, so it wasn’t all bad.
Tim promised to cook me dinner for my birthday. Last week, he didn’t have time with school, homework and play practice and I didn’t feel much up to eating, so it all worked out well. Tonight, he made that birthday dinner. He cooked a delicious gluten free Mexican lasagna for dinner. It was delicious! He cleaned the whole kitchen to boot. Nothing to do but put dishes in the dishwasher when we were done.
Thanks Tim — you are awesome!
The men were great. The day began with a trip to New Hampshire with my husband and breakfast.
I got an unexpected call when we were out from the boys to wish me a Happy Mother’s Day, especially since the one that loves his sleep most of all made the call…that was a really nice surprise.
I came home to a house that was clean and a beautiful red, cushy blanket from one of the boys. Lunch out with Tom and two of them. A nice chance to catch up for a while with some friends who are back in town.
And a delicious dinner cooked for me. Complete with clean up.
If you take away the blackflies that almost ate me alive, it was a pretty good day.
Here’s the ingredients for our stir fry dinner tonight.
Chicken breasts chopped into bite size pieces
Baby bok choy and sliced red bell pepper
A day where no one argues and you’re made to feel like a queen — oh, alright, a princess (since the Queen is rather old anyway). I personally still feel that Mother’s Day belongs to the mothers in my life – my mom, my mother-in-law – not so much for me. Don’t get me wrong, it was always so sweet to the point of tears when the boys would bring home so proudly the cards that they had made or the bead necklace or potted plant. As they get older, though, it gets more complicated. Someone at school didn’t tell them what this year’s Mother’s Day project would be. They are set to figure out, on their own, how to make it a special day. You have to love them for it. But seriously, a houseful of guys barraging me with questions ”What do you want for a gift?” “What do you want to do?” “What do you want to eat?” I dearly love the men in my life, but seriously haven’t they gotten it yet, after all these years? Honestly, whatever they do that day is fine, whatever they cook or come up with or go out and get are all fine. The best gift is the fact that I didn’t have to think of it, plan it or clean up after it. The end result might not be the best or the most delicious (or surprisingly it could be both) but that doesn’t matter. What matters is that they made the effort, that they took the time to think about someone besides themselves, which is difficult at best for teenagers.
Tonight, I am getting a dinner and dessert cooked by the men in my life.
We had a delicious dinner of steak tips, rice and salad that Tim so graciously and deliciously cooked for me, set the table and decorated it with his Mother’s Day card.
TJ and Alex made dessert…….
The men are all cleaning up as I type this….. and then to snuggle up together for a family television show. A good day…..to be a mom.
Snow day. We spent the day home, not that the weather was all that bad, but hey isn’t hanging around what a snow day is all about? Dinner was going to be simple, burger, potatoes and salad. One problem, no buns. I pulled up this recipe from King Arthur Flour and made these hamburger buns. They were easy to make, came out looking delicious and tasted even better. Next time, I’m going to substitute honey for the sugar in the recipe. I didn’t want to try it first time out of the box, since I wouldn’t know whether I goofed the recipe or the substitution didn’t work correctly.
Here’s the link to the recipe at King Arthur’s site.
This was dinner last night – Chicken Tortilla Soup.
- 3 chicken breasts – cut up into bite size pieces
- 12 cups chicken stock or broth
- 4 cups instant mashed potatoes (thickener)
- 1/4 cup shredded cheese (cheddar, jack or colby)
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1 cup chopped green bell peppers or 1 can green chiles
- 1 14 oz can kernel corn
- 2 t. cumin
- 1 t. cajun seasoning
- salt and pepper to taste
- cilantro chopped for topping
- lime wedges for topping
- 2 cups crushed corn tortilla chips for topping
- Cut up chicken breasts add to stock pot with broth.
- Add remaining ingredients except for cilantro, lime and tortilla chips.
- Bring to a boil and simmer until chicken is cooked through about 1/2 hour. Add additional mashed potatoes or sour cream to the desired thickness.
- Add cilantro, lime wedge and tortilla chips to individual bowls to top soup.
We are lucky, very lucky indeed. Tonight we were fortunate to spend Christmas Eve with both family and dear friends and their families. Our three families, all neighbors decided that we would share Christmas Eve dinner together. So we gathered with our families and our extended families. The Conover family was kind enough to host the event. We, thirteen adults and ten children, gathered and ate and laughed and shared stories from our pasts and our presents and just enjoyed each other’s company. It was fun, it was different and it was a feast.
I promise pictures as soon as I can secure them…I was camera-less this evening.
Last night we were treated to the culinary delights cooked for us by TJ and his friend and classmate, Dustin. The two had to create a French dinner, consisting of appetizer, entree and dessert and serve it to us. We had delicious cheese puffs, chicken tenderloins roasted in apple cider, carrots with apples and chocolate banana custard for dessert.
Kudos to the chefs, the dinner was delicious… and my kitchen was returned to its pre-dinner state which was a nice treat.