Thursday, April 26, 2012

Tried and True

"Look Mom! It's snowing!"
I have run into a problem, and it seems to be a re-occurring one.  For the past month or more Thing One has been a little terror and I haven't been able to figure out why, or what to do with him.  Finally I called my mom, and after talking about it I remembered a few things about him that I'd figured out a while ago.

Thing One craves attention.  Okay, that's normal.  He also has a personality type that needs structure.  Having a routine provides him with a sense of security; he's not overwhelmed by complete freedom and he knows when to do what.  That's more of a problem for me.  The only times I have ever been able to keep a schedule were when I was in school or at work. 

These are things that I've known about my oldest son since he was about eight months old, and I had the solution figured out then, too.  It's amazing how often we can forget things.  What am I doing about it this time?  We have started school. 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Spring, Lite and Simple

I do not like the new Blogger interface. Just sayin'. If the last few posts haven't looked right it's because I haven't figured the interface out yet.

I was feeling well for the past week or so, and then we had a storm come through; and I was thrown for quiet a loop. It's the most ironic thing, but I can't wait for summer. I know that I'll be miserable then because of the heat, but at least the spring storms will be over. We did have another baby appointment, and with the exeption of some low blood pressure, everything is going well. The midwife is beginning to suspect that low blood pressure just might be normal for me, and then my mom tells me it runs in her family. Chuckle, chuckle.

Thing One's godmother came over for a few days and watched the boys so I could catch up on some cleaning. I realized that I can always get to within one load of dishes of being caught up, but I never get that last load done. It almost feels like I'm afraid of having the kitchen completely clean! So, it'll probably kill me for the next two days, but I'm going to finish the dishes tonight! And if I actually ask, Nick will vaccum the floor. Then we'll be able to start the spring cleaning.

I inherited a set of dishtowels that some great ancsestor in my mom's family embroidered, and the first one finally fell apart. Really good towels since it has taken thirty-odd years. This one was always a favorite with my sister and I; and despite everything Mom would tell us, we alwasys used this one as an apron instead of for dishes. Maybe that's why it fell apart first. I just couldn't throw the whole thing away, but I'm not sure what I'll do now that I've got it framed.

Oh yeah, the pasta salad. . . . I woke up this morning craving a cold pasta salad. So after this mornings dramatics and remedies, I cooked the pasta, chopped some broccoli, half a green pepper, some grape tomatoes, and shredded some carrots. I fried the chicken with salt, pepper and sage and then chopped it up. I mixed it all together with a generous amount of mayo, more salt and pepper, two tsp. sugar and one tbsp. vinegar. All that it needs now is some fresh, chopped parsley. But it's really good as it is.

Thing One is becoming dramatic again.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Day of Happiness and Joy

This one will be short, because I didn't really cook anything. I pulled a steak out of the freezer and fried it with some salt and pepper, and sprinkled some dried garlic tops on it. I served that with the leftover pasta alfredo.

It was really good, despite being just thrown together, and I wish I had started it earlier in the day because it was our anniversary, and I had pulled the steak out for the celebration. Nick and I are celebrating four years together, and are looking forward to many more.


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Picnic Season!

I made pasta alfredo again. I'm kind of excited that I am making it right again, so I've been making it about once a week or so. This time I didn't add enough salt so it tasted somewhat plain, but it was still good. I used onions, mushrooms and brocoli; and the brocoli might have been a little off with the mushrooms. I wanted to add some chicken, but it was another Friday in Lent.

It's been nice enough lately that we've been outside a lot, and we took our dinner outside. The boys eat their pasta without any sauce, and I had set some aside for them before I added it back to the alfredo. They loved eating outside and we're excited about it being warm enough for picnics again.


Monday, April 9, 2012

The Butternut Squash

I know I've been promising to write about what I did with the Butternut squash that I bought a few weeks ago, and I'm finally getting around to it. After I had roasted it I scooped all the meat out and mashed it with butter, salt and pepper. I had big plans to do stuff with it and even googled a bunch of recipes (I really want to try some of them someday, when I have more money). All I did this time was serve it mashed as a side dish, or just ate it when I needed something fast.

It was good all by itself, or served with fried liver and onions, like I did one day. The liver I just fried to crisp, and put salt and peppper on the onions. I had the squash and a baked potoato on the side. It was fast, and filling; and would have been cheaper if the squash had been in season.


Saturday, April 7, 2012

Happy (upcoming) Easter!

Happy Easter to all my readers! It has been a long road here, but we made it, once again. I will be back next week with something intellectual; as of right now my brain is mush after working a double shift at work. Ciao!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Italian Pasta, and Trains

I had been feeling particularly bad one day, so Nick asked his mother if the boys and I could come over for a few hours. His brothers would watch the boys and I could get some much needed rest. We stopped by the library on our way there, and played for a little while. Thing One was reading Thomas the Tank Engine books and asked me to make a train out of the blocks they had there. He was upset about not being able to take it with us, but we did get the books.

I'd brought some food with us, and there was a lovely recipe on the back of the pasta box. I had the onions and a can of chopped tomatoes, the recipe also called for spinach, sausage and two types of cheese--none of which I had. I didn't plan on adding the sausage anyway because it was a Friday in Lent, and I figured it would be okay without the spinach and cheeses.

It was supposed to be a baked pasta dish, but I think that was just so all the cheese would melt into it. I just sauted it all together and it was just as good that way. One of my brothers-in-law was wondering if there was something other than tuna sandwiches that he could have for dinner, and I told Mom that if I could add some of her spinach to my pasta then he could have some pasta when it was done.

I also took the liberty of raiding her spice rack, and that worked because the rest of the brothers-in-law also ate the pasta. I added parsley, sage, thyme and garlic. I did not put any cheese on mine; I don't know if the boys put cheese on theirs. I enjoyed my pasta, and the rest I got.

Happy Easter!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

A Long Forgotten Favorite

I'm feeling a lot better this morning, so my intention is to write a bunch of things and set them to post automatically throughout the next few weeks or so. Besides, I've actually taken pictures of what I've been cooking and have a bunch of recipes backed up. So here goes!

Back in Feburary I had a craving for some pasta with alfredo sauce. A good alfredo sauce has always been one of my favorite things. When I was working at my last resturaunt job I was constantly experimenting with various vegetables in pasta alfredo. I think one of my best was an horseradish alfredo with roasted asparagus wrapped in proscuitto--soo good! But asparagus is a hit or miss vegetable, and it missed with most of the staff.

Since I left the resturant I've forgotten how to make alfredo sauce. I've been sad about that for the past four years. I finally got it right! I started with nearly half a stick of butter, and lightly sauted some chopped onions, garlic and sage. When the onions were starting to turn brown I added what must have been three cups of milk. I had to use a lot because I had a lot of pasta. I did not let the milk boil, I'm not even sure it simmered for very long, but when it was heated up I added a third of a cup of sifted flour and whisked it in very well. After another minute on the heat it was thick enough. I added the pasta back in with salt and pepper and kept it on the heat just long enough for everthing to be warm all through.

I served it with some carrots and green beans that simmered in salt water, and pork with a sweet and sour sauce (and I forget how I made that, I was focusing more on the alfredo).

We had gone out to the park earlier that day, and stopped for something cold on our way home. Thing One had a dollar that he earned so he could buy some ice cream. He picked out a massive freezer pop, and he was good enough to share it with his brother. They were purple for hours!


Sunday, April 1, 2012

Late Night Food

Well, it's been a while since I've posted something here. Partly because when I have thought about putting up a post I mentally chuckle at the insanity of doing eighty million things at once instead of the usual seven hundred ninety nine million. But I finally revived my desire to cook late at night and threw together one of the easiest stir fry dishes in human history.

I wish I had a garden to grow veggies in, but I must be content for the moment with frozen. All this recipe takes is a bag of frozen stir fry vegetables, pre-chopped and ready to fry, a third of a stick of butter, a little oil, a pack of imitation crab meat, a half spoonful of sugar, and soy sauce. Fry the veggies first to get them unfrozen, then add the crab meat, sugar, and soy sauce. Pour a dash or two of water in with it all to create a gravy of sorts in the bottom of the pan. Serve and enjoy!