Friday, June 22, 2007

The Best of Love Stories

I had a love in soft south land,
Beloved through April far in May;
He waited on my lightest breath,
And never dared to say me nay.
He saddened if my cheer was sad,
But gay he grew if I was gay;
We never differed on a hair,
My yes his yes, my nay his nay.
The wedding hour was come, the aisles
Were flushed with sun and flowers that day;
I pacing balanced in my thoughts,--
"It's quite too late to think of nay."--
My bridegroom answered in his turn,
Myself had almost answered "yea":
When through the flashing nave I heard.
A struggle and resounding "nay."
Bridemaids and bridegroom shrank in fear,
But I stood high who stood at bay:
"And if I answer yea, fair Sir,
What man art thou to bar with nay?"
He was a strong man from the north,
Light-locked, with eyes of dangerous gray:
"Put yea by for another time
In which I will not say thee nay."
He took me in his strong white arms,
He bore me on his horse away
O'er crag, morass, and hair-breadth pass,
But never asked me yea or nay.
He made me fast with book and bell,
With links of love he makes me stay;
Till now I've neither heart nor power
Nor will nor wish to say him nay.
Christina Rossetti

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Menu Planning...

The first thing that I do, when it is time to plan the menu is to look at what is on the family calendar. Does Conrad have an early meeting? Are we hosting game night, so have to have the kitchen cleaned up earlier than usual? Are we having company?

Then I begin with dinner. Some of the dinners that we have when it is a "fast dinner night" are hamburgers, fish sandwiches, frozen conveniences such as frozen pizza. I like to alternate types of meat, or meatless. When the budget doesn't need to be especially tight, and I'm watching my carbs (which I should be doing all of the time), I usually don't plan casseroles. I will plan a meat, two vegetables (one low in carbs) a starch and a fruit. When things are tighter we do lots of casseroles and soups.

This week we have had company. I really try not to go over board with "show-stopping" meals, and this is a real temptation for me.

On Monday, we had Jambalaya, salad, carrots and applesauce
Tuesday, meatloaf, mashed potatoes, Vidalia Onion Casserole and fresh green beans.
Tonight we are having baked macaroni and cheese, salad, stewed tomatoes, and homemade applesauce
Thursday, we are having a roast, with pasta, saute'd zuchini and yellow squash and carrot salad
Friday, I was going to make BBQ sandwiches with slaw, but have changed my mind because I think it will be too acidic for one of our guests who has reflux I'm thinking perhaps potato soup, salad and rolls.
Saturday, a Father's Day dinner of baked spiral sliced ham, pineapple sauce, scalloped potatoes, baked spinach casserole and harvard beets.

Sunday is congregational meal, so I'm going to dice some leftover ham and throw it into a hash brown casserole and make another vidalia onion casserole.

We have been having muffins and fruit for breakfast because our guests are usually hurrying to get to their tours on time. Lunch is leftovers or sandwiches.

I haven't yet planned the menu for my next wave of guests next week. I'll have to see what's on sale this week (the ham was just over a dollar a pound at the Commissary last week.)

Heather asked for my Quiche recipe:
In the bottom of an already baked pie shell, distribute about 3 Tbs grated cheese and one cup of cooked meat, vegetables or a combination.

Mix 3 large eggs blended with enough milk or cream to make 1 1/2 cups. Pour over the contents in pie shell.
Bake at 375 degrees for 30-35 minutes.

Here are some favorite combinations: Cheddar, Chicken and toasted pecans. Salt, tarragon.

Swiss, Crab, green onions. Red pepper, salt.

Swiss, Sausage and Onions.

Swiss, fresh, stemmed, washed, blanched & chopped spinach, minced scallions. Salt, pepper, nutmeg.

Swiss, 6 Sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled. Salt, pepper, nutmeg.

The time of year that we are able to get Vidalia onions on sale is a big event. This is always a great, mild side dish.
Vidalia Onion Casserole:
1/4 cup butter
7 medium vidalia onions, sliced
1/2 cup uncooked rice
3 cups boiling water
1 tsp. salt
1 cup shredded swiss cheese
2/3 cups half & half or evaporated milk
Melt butter in a large heavy pan and saute' the onions until soft and transparent, stirring frequently. Cook rice in boiling water 5 minutes. Drain well. Blend rice, onions, cheese and 1/2 & 1/2. Put into a greased shallow baking dish. Bake at 325 for 1 hour. This dish travels well and is still tasty at room temperature.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Summer time... and the living is easy...

That song is going through my head this week. The easy part is well...up to interpretation.
Having lots of company in and out is hard, there's lots more work to do, but it's easy on the heart and soul! It is great fun to stay up late talking, even though I pay for it in the morning.
Our guests are here, after a wonderful homeschool convention, the Howards came to our house to rest and worship. Church was packed, and once again, I got choked up with thankfulness for our new pastor - we are so blessed!
I got incredibly tickled when the 7 year old who is staying with us asked me to introduced him to Bill Potter. This young man did an excellent job, shaking his hand vigorously and saying, "Mr. Potter, I have heard your Vision Forum CDs and they are WONDERFUL!" and later, "Mr. Potter, I hope we can have lunch together sometime!" Bill was very gracious. His wife Leslie tells me that he started back when he was 7, his parents gave him a book on oratory and "off he went!".

The mother of our visiting family was not well, yesterday, and spent most of the afternoon and evening resting. She was up again, and quite chipper this morning. I hope that she was able to catch up on her rest. JimBob and their oldest stayed up way to late with us and learned how to play Dutch Blitz, and Pilgrim's Progress. Before going to bed, Rowen told me that he wanted to learn to play PIT the next night.... we'll see!

The Howards are staying with us because of the Jamestown 400 (Conrad says it sounds like a NASCAR race). Many in our church are volunteering so they get to be there. If you are like me and homebound this week, Carmon at Buried Treasure is covering the festivities. I'm loving her posts!

Conrad is working hard at the Shipyard and in his down time is very busy with shepherding God's flock. I and the younger three are holding down the fort. Gaelan is in his last week and a half of academy. He tells me that pepper-spray (I forget what he called it) training is this Wednesday - yuck! Next Wednesday he graduates. Conrad's Mom and mine will be up and so will my sister and her girls. I'm hoping that Kathryn and the girls will be here for Father's Day, which is also a congregational lunch...yay!

What do you do for Father's Day?

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Stopping in for a sec...

I wish I could write as well as the inhabitants of the Common Room! I wish I could think as well as they!
Check out these two articles there.
The Spiritual Side of Family
News and Views

Good stuff!

Now, back to work... :^)