Saturday, January 5, 2019

Random thoughts

I learned something from my sister that I hadn't know before.  She told me that she remembers our dad making fruit cake.   She said he put almonds in it and candied fruit. He even blanched the almonds first.  My sister recalls seeing him mixing it all up with his hands!

We were talking about what a good cook our mom was.  Remembering that when she made chocolate chip cookies, she would always put them inside the Dutch oven (deep pan).  It was our family's version of a cookie jar. 

It is kind of strange how, in my memory, my mom was the cook.  She made everything taste good.  The one thing I did not like though was how she would sprinkle dried parsley on top of the mashed potatoes before putting them on the table.  I'm sure it was supposed to look like something out of a magazine.  And maybe it did.  I just felt like she had ruined the potatoes.

But my dad did cook.  He had a cookbook called "The Golden Cookbook".  I am not sure where it came from, but it was his only.  He made the best chocolate cake- that took a whole can of Hershey's chocolate syrup.  Remember when chocolate syrup came in cans?

His only dinner as far as I can recall, was fried chicken. (and a vegetable and potatoes) It was really good.  But if you told him you liked it he would cook it again and again all week.  Oh well.

I've always been a pretty good cook.  When the kids were little it seems like we had chicken almost every night of the week.  I had so many varying ways that I cooked it.  Almost never with a recipe.

Last night I cooked chicken thighs with onions, garlic and carrots.  Plus some flavored rice.  It was really good.  It was also way more than the two of us could eat.  So we decided to have the leftovers this evening.

While Nick was heating up the leftovers and setting the table, he paused and said "how did we do this for seven people every night?".   All of the plates and silverware and glasses of water. And napkins.  We always had water with dinner, with a water pitcher on the table.  We still have water with dinner.  How did we do it?

Quite often we had extras too.  There were often some of the kids friends over for dinner.  Most of them thought it was rather novel that we all sat down to eat together.  I guess we were quaint.

We had a rule that you couldn't eat in the family room if you were under 21.  Most of the time it worked.

And now it's just me and Nick in this big house. And almost every evening we wonder what we are going to have for dinner!  I just don't have the energy or interest or something, to think about  and plan meals.  It's a combination of all of the cooking I did for so many years along with being in almost constant pain (my knees) and I really do think that two brain surgeries did something that made me more mellow.  Who knows.  When I di cook, it's pretty good though.

And, on another subject, the guys came to put up the shades in the family room.  They were missing a bracket, so they have to come back to finish up.  It's amazing to see the guy up in that ladder!

And on another completely subject, I had a full day out today just doing stuff I haven't done in a while.  I started out at Weight Watchers.  I haven't lost anything this week.  I didn't gain anything either, so I consider that a good thing considering all of the Christmas candy we've had around the house.

After Weight Watchers I went and got my hair cut.  And then, the ultimate splurge.  I got  manicure and pedicure.  I tried to take a picture of my hand to show off my nails, but it is really hard to photograph your own hand.  I took a picture of my foot instead.  You can see the color of the nail polish there.

This is Ann working on my feet.  She has been working on my nails for about 14 years.  I am not sure why, but she and I have a real bond.  The first time I went in after my brain surgery last year, she and I hugged and cried for a few minutes.    She is so sweet and I know that she really cares.  She even called the house once to ask Nick how I was doing. Unfortunately, Nick didn't understand her accent, but we did figure it out eventually 

I went with a bright pink.  I actually thought about getting blue nail polish, but I am glad I didn't!


  1. At one point this past month, we had 5 of our kids staying with us (the 6th has his own apartment closer to the city, and he'd drop by for dinner sometimes, too). I have NO IDEA how I cranked out that much food night after night after night for all those years. All December, I was constantly cooking and food shopping and, oh, let's not forget, planning for the holidays, too. We're down to just our 2 youngest again, and I am utterly exhausted. But, boy, it's quiet here.

    1. It's really something. I recall going to my single nephew's for dinner. It took ages for him t get the food ready and on the table. He said he hadn't realized how much work it was to cook for seven people. All I could think was "give me a break!"