Archive for December, 2008

A nice holiday

Posted in Uncategorized on December 28, 2008 by depechemom

We’re having a nice holiday thus far. With J working lots of hours leading up to Christmas, having him home has been a very nice reward. We’ve had time with my family which has been nice for all of us. The kids absolutely adore their cousins and eat up every second they have together.
We’ve eaten more than we should for several days in a row now. Thankfully, my pants are still fitting for now, but I’m not sure how much longer they’ll hold up.
I hope you all have had a wonderful holiday as well and lots of good family time.

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It’s Christmas Eve!

Posted in Uncategorized on December 24, 2008 by depechemom

But you already knew that, didn’t you? I could really use just one more day, actually. Though the way J’s hours have been lately, I don’t suppose it would do me any good anyway. He’s even working today. He called earlier and didn’t sound any too jolly. Poor guy. Call on Christmas Eve just plain stinks. His vacation begins tomorrow and it won’t come a moment too soon!
The kids and I have had LOTS of nice snuggling time the last few days. We’ve done a bit of running around too. We’re about to head out to the store for today and tomorrow’s dinners. It’s not that we haven’t been to the store already this week, but J and I just finally were able to sit down together last night to plan tomorrow’s fondue fun. I actually don’t know what we’ll be eating tonight. I’d like Mexican, in the tradition of my family, but I’m having trouble feeling inspired.
The kids were in the church Christmas pageant last Sunday. It was absolutely fantastic. ALL of the kids did a wonderful job. The was hardly a dry eye in the place when they finished, and not just the moms!
The most fun part for me, though, has been hearing my sweet children-even Little Lamb-singing Christmas songs. “O Come All Ye Faithful”, “Go Tell It On The Mountain”, and “Angels We Have Heard On High” are among the favorites. They were all learned in pageant practice. “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” is also a favorite, though Little Bear has decided that “The Little Drummer Boy” is his all time favorite.
I think the monkey’s are ready to head out. I’d better go while hair is still combed and shoes are still on!
[Sidenote: Stocking stuffer type gifts make for excellent tooth fairy gifts, should the need ever arise!]
[Sidenote #2: I’m typing this in the tiny quickpress window and have absolutely no desire to reread/edit. Sorry!!]
[Sidenote #3: I rarely actually take the time to edit/reread. Shocking, I know!]

Four

Posted in Uncategorized on December 14, 2008 by depechemom

My sweet boy turned four yesterday. Such a busy time for a birthday, but he doesn’t mind. J’s parents and sister came in town to help celebrate.
The kids had a church pageant rehearsal in the morning which allowed Mimi, Grandad, Aunt M, and J (who has to work next weekend ūüė¶ ) to see the show. Belle has a few lines as the Angel Gabriel and Little Bear is a sheep. Such fun!
Then, we had a simple party with just a couple of friends in the afternoon. We decorated Gingerbread men once again, as this is one of Little Bear’s favorite activities. He was thrilled with all of his gifts, falling over in excitement a couple of times! Oh if only you could see just how cute this little guy is!!
Four feels so big, though he was a bit disappointed that he didn’t seem any bigger yesterday morning. But I know those new size 4 jeans that are way too long right now will fit perfectly in no time!
As for me, I’ve got to figure out what to do about the fact that Belle lost another tooth tonight and all I’ve got is a $20!

Homemade Stock

Posted in Uncategorized on December 7, 2008 by depechemom

We’ve had a run of the stomach bug in our house this week. ¬†It’s been great fun, let me tell you! ¬†No actually, I won’t tell you because that, my friends, would be Too Much Information! ¬†

The only thing I missed about not having Thanksgiving at our house was not having leftover turkey meat and bones for making pot pies, turkey enchiladas, and turkey stock.  So, as a second best, I bought a whole chicken and roasted it.  We had the chicken and rice for a couple of meals then I deboned the whole bird.  I froze the leftover meat in a couple of bags and put the bones in a separate bag in the freezer.  This morning I pulled the bones out of the freezer to make the stock.

If you’ve never made your own stock, then I challenge you to do so! ¬†It’s delicious and so much cheaper than the canned/boxed stuff. ¬†And…you control all the ingredients! ¬†I once saw Bobby Flay make stock on a soup episode and, let me tell you, it has totally changed the way I do it! ¬†You won’t believe the difference roasting the bones and vegetable first makes. ¬†

You will need: turkey or chicken bones, meat removed; 2-3 carrots roughly chopped(or a handful of baby carrots); 1-2 onions, chopped into  4-6 pieces each; 3-4 garlic cloves, whole; 2 stocks celery, roughly chopped (if you have celery on hand, great.  if not, no biggie.  just leave it out.); olive oil; 2 bay leaves; 1/4 c whole peppercorns; salt.

First, set the oven to 450 degrees. ¬†Put the bones, carrots, onions, garlic, celery (if you have it) in a pyrex dish or roasting pan-depending on the size of the bird. ¬†There’s no need to be exact with the vegetables as they are only for flavor. ¬†You won’t be eating them. ¬†Drizzle this with olive oil. ¬†Put the pan in the oven for 30-40 minutes.

Then, put the bones and vegetables in a large stock pot on the stove.  Add bay leaves, peppercorns, salt, and 12 cups of water.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.  Let simmer for about 4 hours.

Strain the stock into a fresh pot or bowl. ¬†When Bobby made this, he returned it to the stove and reduced it by half again. ¬†I rarely do this because I want more stock than that! ¬†As for the salt, I don’t put too much in. ¬†You can always add more when you make soup or whatever it is your making with your stock. ¬†I divide my stock into smaller containers of 1-2 cups each and freeze them. ¬†

I think we’ll have chicken noodle soup for dinner!

so long as I don’t smack my head

Posted in Uncategorized on December 1, 2008 by depechemom

It’s full speed ahead for Christmas around here. ¬†Well, Christmas and Little Bear’s birthday. ¬†I spent the morning running errands-which the kids always think we’re going to see Aunt Erin, but are quite disappointed to learn that, no, we’ll just be going lots of places-and managed to forget many of the things we really needed-trash sacks, cheese for dinner, tissues, cat litter, to name a few. ¬†I did find a nice collection of wool sweaters at GoodWill. ¬†I promptly threw them in a long, hot wash cycle and a full heat dry cycle. ¬†What were once size large adult sweaters would now fit Little Bear comfortably! ¬†No worries though, as this process, called felting, was exactly my intention. ¬†I can’t give all the details here yet as there are a couple recipients reading here. ¬†Suffice it to say that the recycled portion will only be a small detail to the total project. ¬†I think my sister was a bit worried when she called and I told her I was at GoodWill looking for part of her Christmas gift. ¬†I love me a good resale shop, but it’s not usually my go-to store for gifts, you know?
I watched LB’s friend JS today for a while. ¬†I was planning to head back out for the forgotten items once Belle was home and JS headed out, but I stopped to take a peak online and LB fell asleep. ¬†I’m now faced with deciding just how important cheddar cheese is to our tacos tonight. ¬†Considering that the cheese would be Little Lamb’s main course, I’m thinking I will be waking my boy pretty soon here.
I love how everything is pointing to Christmas now. ¬†LB brought home the annual advent paper chain from school today. ¬†I love how they make these every year in each of the classes. ¬†I just remembered a calendar I’d gotten on clearance last year at Michaels. ¬†(Is it ae or ea…I never can remember! ¬†Please tell me I’m not the only one with this dilemma.)¬†
This post seems especially disconnected, even for me. ¬†So, I think I’ll head to the basement to dig out that calendar. ¬†I hope you had a wonderful holiday week and are enjoying this first day of December.