Archive for the ‘food’ Category

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Turkey Dinner

November 22, 2011

Since we won’t be able to celebrate Thanksgiving on Thursday, the girls and I decided to make a turkey dinner today. We made turkey, stuffing, smashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, brussels sprouts, and gravy. Here are some pictures of the major players.

Here is the whole spread on the table for dinner. The rolls are teh only thing we didn’t make from scratch.

While at Wegmans, I saw some beautiful autumn flowers that I decided to buy. When I got them home and put them into a vase, they looked so tiny. At $8 a bunch, I wasn’t keen on going back and buying another bouquet or two. Then I went to Price Rite this afternoon and they had bunches for $4, so I bought a couple.

Here is the end result of my 3 bunches of flowers.

We had a great time together and the food was super tasty!

I hope everyone has a safe and happy Thanksgiving Day!

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Easter Sunday Dinner

April 4, 2010

After our backyard work this morning, described in my previous post, we went over to Jeff’s parents for dinner. We arrived shortly after 1 PM and ate around 1:30 or 2 PM. The spread was awesome.

There were little potatoes, two variaties of lamb, roasted veggies…

…asparagus…

…and fruit salad.

There were also deviled eggs, green beans, and a variety of toppings and other things that I can’t really remember at the moment. It was a yummy meal! For dessert we had a lemony marscipone brie with raspberries or goat cheese on crackers.

After we ate, the weather was so gorgeous that we sat on the 3 season porch and visited while Erin soaked in the hot tub. She was a bit sore after her hockey adventures of the last few days.

I never would have said that Erin and Sarah look much alike, but I can definitely see the resmeblence in this picture!

This is a really cool wind thingy that is hanging in a tree in the backyard.

My mother-in-law puts bird seed out on the deck railing and in a muffin pan on the glider rocker on the deck. The birds, squirrels, and chipmunks love to come visit.

After eating for a little bit, the squirrel noticed me. He cautiously kept eating, with one eye on me.

Check out the cheek pouches on this chipmunk!

Just before we decided that it was time to go home, the kids started going through Jeff’s old hockey sticks to see if any of them were worth saving. A very small number of them came home, but most of them wound up in the trash. As we were in the Jeep, ready to leave, I mentioned that the garbage can looked funny. Jeff commented that every one of those sticks had a story. He had shared some of those stories as the kids were sorting through them. I suppose in a way it’s a little sad, but I suppose life goes on, and there are lots of other memories, not related to hockey sticks. Those stories related to the sticks will certainly last longer than the sticks did anyway!

We had a lovely relaxing day. The weather was beautiful, with the sun shining and the temperature hovering in the mid 60’s. Perfect for sitting on my in-law’s porch!

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Doughnuts

February 9, 2010

For the last couple of days I have become overwhelmingly tired midday. I have been napping in the middle of the day, then I have to rush to get dinner on the table. Today I took a nap around 3:45, much too late in the day to actually nap and still get dinner made. I bought pork chops the other day and planned to make those for dinner, so I didn’t figure I’d need a lot of time for that. Jeff gets home around 5:30, so I thought if I napped until 5, I could get up, rush, and have dinner ready by 6.

Well, in my mind it worked out great, but my mind was no longer thinking clearly at 5 when the kids woke me from a sound sleep. I got up, got on the computer, read e-mail, checked out the latest on facebook, and suddenly realized I should be making dinner! I went downstairs and noticed the bread machine out of its usual location, but didn’t think too much of it since I had told Kyle to MAKE bread if he didn’t like the bread I had bought. So, I enlisted the help of Erin and began making dinner. She cut up broccoli, I cut up the pork while the rice cooked, and I got the pans going to make two different recipes (from jars)  of Indian food. One hot curry recipe for Jeff and Kyle and a milder coconut dish for Sarah and Erin. Jeff came home while I was cutting up the meat and after observing the pork asked what I was eating for dinner. I won’t knowingly eat pork except for the occassional bacon on a cheeseburger. However, if the bacon falls out of the burger, I won’t eat it. I really hate pork…in fact, I think it is disgusting, but I digress… Oh, I had left over beef roast and garlic smashed taters from the night before along with a heaping helping of broccoli. It was very yummy. The rest of the family enjoyed their dinner as well. In fact, Erin ate more than half of what I made for her and Sarah. I have never seen her put away quite that much food. If only I had half of her metabolism!

As we were finishing dinner, a buzzer sounded. I immediately took inventory in my sad, still not fully alert brain trying to figure out what I forgot to remove from the heat and put on the table, when Kyle announced “the doughnut dough is ready.” After choking, I asked him if he was even remotely aware of the work that goes into making doughnuts… Dumb question, he’s a 17 year old boy! All he knew about doughnuts is that they taste good and he had a recipe to make them. Now, Kyle is very good about safety, but there is something unsettling about a large pot of oil, a gas stove, and a 17 year old at the controls. Yeah, I fried doughnuts! Yay! I don’t even like doughnuts. Kyle apologized several times after realizing how much goes into making them and not asking if I was okay with it beforehand. I told him it was okay, I had never fried doughnuts before and it really wasn’t that bad.

Here are the fruits of our labor. They really turned out more like fried dough than doughnuts, but I actually like them better than doughnuts.

Yes, they are heart-shaped. Erin even got creative and made dog bones and teddy bears. Hearts are the only cutters I have with multiple sizes. I guess with Valentine’s Day so close, hearts make sense.

It seems like I fried a lot more than what is shown above. I guess the kids must have had a few before I took the pictures, lol! At least we know that Sarah can eat them and not get sick! She hasn’t had a doughnut in ages, since most places use peanut or soybean oil now.

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Happy Birthday Jeffrey!

October 29, 2009

On Tuesday Jeff had a birthday. That morning I, unfortunately, had to have some allergy testing done. Having never had that done before, I wasn’t sure what to expect, and I am still getting hives from time to time where I was tested on my arm. After the testing, all I wanted to do was sleep.

I did manage to throw some corned beef into the crockpot before taking a nap though. When I awakened, I remembered that I had forgotten to get cabbage, so we ran to the store and got some. I then made Jeff’s cake. When I asked what he wanted, all he told me was pineapple. I made a white cake in two layers, and made some pineapple yummy (filling) to go between them. Oh, he also told me that he is not fond of butter cream frosting, so I found a recipe for creme fraiche frosting, so I made that instead. The whole thing was rather yummy. I had gotten the Wall-E and Eve figures ages ago and somehow managed to hide them until I finished the cake. (He really likes Wall-E)

cake

Today I was feeling rather industrious, so I made a grape pie with the filling my mom had given me. I tried an oil based crust which turned out fabulous! We had a little left over frosting from Jeff’s cake, so we put that on top of our pieces of pie and it was delicious! I also made pumpkin muffins to try to use up some left over pumpkin I made  last week. I also used the left over crumb topping from the grape pie for the muffins. Good stuff! As I baked, Joe (aka Hoover) looked on keeping an eye on the floor in case he was needed for clean-up duty.

new bed

goodies

Once I finished baking, I made curried, pecan crusted pork sandwiches for my family. I don’t eat pork so I planned to have left-over chicken as an open faced sandwich, but I was so tired, I skipped dinner. I can’t figure out why I’m soooo exhausted! Ha Ha Ha!

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Apple Picking

September 19, 2009

Erin and I decided to go pick apples today while Kyle and Sarah were at my in-laws. Erin kept bugging me to do something “fun” and a friend mentioned she was going apple picking, so I thought Erin might enjoy that. She was quite excited about it and when I asked if she wanted me to get Kyle and Sarah so they could go, she was adamant about wanting just the two of us to go. She is a girl who knows her mind!

The apple farm we chose is not terribly big, so we didn’t have to walk too far, or lug the 24 pounds of apples that we picked very far. We picked some Jonamacs, Ginger Gold, and Twenty Ounce. We plan to make a bunch of applsauce with the Jonamacs and the Twenty Ounce. The Ginger Gold we will just eat as they are.

While waiting for the wagon to take us to the orchard, we spotted this…

Good shady spot!

Good shady spot!

This is one of the wagons that carried people to and from the orchard.

Very bumpy ride!

Very bumpy ride!

As we headed down the first row of Jonamac apples, this caught my attention.

apple-wasps

It is probably a good thing Kyle wasn’t with us. He would have run screaming from the place after his encounter on Wednesday!

A little later, Erin pointed out this huge apple on the ground. She insisted I take a picture of it, so I did. Then I decided that it was hard to tell, from the picture, how big is was. I asked her to find a “normal” sized apple from the ground to put with it. The apple on the left is an average size Jonamac. The mutant, on the right, is just plain enormous. At first I thought it was a squash of some sort.

giant-apple

Here are a few more pictures from our day…

Erin-picking

flattened-apple

I am not certain what kind of apples these are, but they weren’t ready yet. The trees were just bulging with these bright red apples!

apple-row

Erin-finished

When we finished our apple picking, we picked up a 1/2 gallon of cider and a bag of pears. We are going to add pears to some of our applesauce. I think it adds a little extra sweetness without adding (processed) sugar. We then went to a nearby Bill Grays and had some healthy yummy food before heading home.

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Yummy!

September 1, 2009

A couple weeks ago it was an unbearably hot day and the kids were miserable because both air conditioners were on the fritz. They asked if they could sleep over at Jeff’s parents becuase they have central air. I figured it would be much more tolerable for them so I told them they could call and ask. My in-laws were happy to oblige, so the kids went there and Jeff and I decided to go out for dinner.

We recently discovered Aladdin’s Natural Eatery. When I first got sick, Jeff went there with the girls and got some take out. We all really liked the food and it is relatively inexpensive, so it is now one of our favorite spots to eat. The couple times that we had been there to eat in, we sat on the first level because stairs and I were not a good combination. I figured if I tried to walk up the stairs, they would probably call 911 and have me hauled away. I still get somewhat breathless with more than 1 flight of stairs, but it is a lot better than it was.

Anyway, we decided while it was just the two of us this time we would eat upstairs on the balcony. I am so glad we did. Here is the view from the balcony, with a bit of the balcony decor thrown in. We had a very nice time and will definitely do it again!

aladdins-east

Aladdins west

I was too hungry to take pictures of the food…sorry!

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Kyle’s 17th Birthday and Niagara Falls

August 29, 2009

Wow! I can’t belive Kyle is 17 already. Where has the time gone?

I asked him what he wanted to do for his birthday and he decided on dinner at a Japanese restaurant in Buffalo, followed by a visit to Niagara Falls. We had planned to go to a Teppanyaki restaurant that we had previously visited, but upon reading a couple of recent reviews of the place, decided on a more favorably reviewed restaurant called Wasabi. Despite the spicy name, it was a great little place with delicious food and the presentation of the food was excellent!

I ordered Teriyaki Strip Steak, which was wonderful.

Teriyaki-Beef

Jeff ordered the Chirashi. It was gorgeously presented.

chirashi

Kyle, Sarah, Erin, and my father-in-law shared this Titanic portion of sushi and sashimi.

titanic

I did not get a picture of the food my mother-in-law ordered, but it was equally awesome in presentation.

After a filling, late lunch, we set out towards the falls. Along the way, we made a quick pit stop and Kyle suggested I get a picture of the sky. It really was a beautiful day for a trip to the falls. The sky was blue, the temperature was warm, but not hot, and the weather (mostly) cooperated.

blue-sky

Upon arriving in Niagara Falls, we drove around a while looking for cheap parking, but found that all of our old favorite places now either cost, or are reserved. I guess when the casino opened, all the prices shot up…for everything! We found a spot and parked, then walked across the bridge to Goat Island. It was a slow go as I was having a very bad breathing day. Along the way, we saw this building…

I was intrigued by the artwork at the top. I couldn’t quite tell for sure what it was, but with some searching, I did find some information on the building. It is the United Office Building, built in 1929, and it has an Art Deco Mayan Revival motif in several places on the building, including all around the top levels. Unfortunately, I didn’t really feel compelled, at the time, to walk around the building and photograph other Mayan art on it. Something about not being able to breathe and the rain that was beginning to fall. We ducked into a souvenir shop to wait out the rain for a few minutes, then we had clear (from rain) skies the rest of the day.

As we were crossing the bridge, I noticed these silly geese swimming in the water just yards from the crest of the falls! Don’t they have any sense? (you really need to click on the picture to enlarge it in order to see the geese)

Once we got to Goat Island, I noticed this squirrel. The black squirrels that reside near the border, both in the US and Canada, are notorious for being mean, evil little creatures. They will chase you! Yes those fluffy little 1 pound creatures have the ability to make grown adults run away. I don’t know what it is about them, but they just have an air that says “I own the place, I dare you to challenge my right to be here…” I quickly took this guy’s picture, then walked away. I didn’t want him to think I had anything at all against him!

This squirrel seemed much friendlier than the one above. He came right over to us. We suspect he has received some “free handouts” before and has lost his fear of people. Anyway, I thought he made a good subject for a picture or two.

Erin is the only of my children that enjoys having her picture taken, so I take many of her. This one I found amusing. Her hair is like a barometer. Here it is saying humid. Her hair is normally quite straight, but as the humidity rises, the frizz and waviness of her hair also increases.

barometer-erin

The next five shots are the obligatory, “I went to Niagara Falls,” shots. They really look better enlarged…just click on them.

crest

horseshoe

Having lived within a days drive of the Falls for most of my life, it would be simple for them to have just become another site to visit. I have never, however, ceased to be amazed by the power of them. The following picture screams “power” to me. They really are an awe inspiring site to behold!

Kyle wanted to see the Falls all lit up at night, so we ventured out onto the observation deck as the sun began setting. I have no monopod or tripod, but I still wanted to try my hand at a few night photos. I took several which range from awesome to awful. The following two fall in the awesome category. I was very pleased with how they turned out, especially considering I had nothing but my arms to stabilize the camera.

lit-up-2

lit-up

This is my artistic, don’t look through the lens, just point, fire, and hope for the best shot. I like the way the sun is just a little dot in the picture.

misty-sun

I think this guy might have had the best seat in the house!

perched

Kyle reported that he had a very good time. It was ridiculously late by the time we got home, but everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.