Nursing someone

13 Nov

My excuse for not blogging today. See you tomorrow.

Cindy: from your breasts? Hmmm…

Telling Stories – Day 3

11 Nov

Back in the day when I was feeding a bunch of kids, spaghetti was always my favorite thing to make and the kids loved it. I made my own sauce and never made it the same way, always adding a little of this and a little of that. I discovered Ragu after the kids were out of the house.

My daughter says I wasn’t a gourmet cook and I agree with her. I cooked things the kids and their Dad would eat. I tried a few times to help them develop a more sophisticated palate but was hampered by a meat and potatoes guy from Detroit (their Dad). My budget was also very lean and not conducive to fine cuisine.

I always cooked from scratch and loved the process. The kitchen was a gathering place and we had a large island with butcher board where we could gather. I would spend at least an hour and a half or more on dinner any given evening. I was not a fast cook and was frequently interrupted by the shenanigans of four active rug rats.

The following recipe was a big hit. Somehow I remember using sour cream but this is Campbell’s recipe. My son Jim could eat the whole thing if allowed.

Campbell’s Chicken Broccoli Divan Recipe

Ingredients & Instructions Recipe Tips
What You’ll Need
4 cups cooked broccoli florets
2 cups cubed cooked chicken
1 can (10 3/4 ounces) Campbell’s® Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup or Campbell’s® Condensed 98% Fat Free Cream of Chicken Soup or Campbell’s® Healthy Request® Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese (about 2 ounces)
2 tablespoons plain dry bread crumbs
1 tablespoon butter, melted

How to Make It
1 Place the broccoli and chicken into a 9-inch pie plate.
2 Stir the soup and milk in a small bowl. Pour the soup mixture over the broccoli and chicken. Sprinkle with the cheese. Stir the bread crumbs and butter in a small bowl. Sprinkle the bread crumb mixture over the cheese.
3 Bake at 450°F. for 20 minutes or until the chicken mixture is hot and bubbling.

Stay Tuned

10 Nov

To my faithful readers:

Had a great weekend with some great folks so no time to write! Some of those folks are my little band of blog followers.

I have a variety of topics and insights which will be revealed in the next day or so.

Take care and smile at someone today.

ADPOV: It can’t happen soon enough!!! Ta-DAY…

Taking it easy

7 Nov

I had big plans today. Feeling so much better I made a list. But then something got in the way of my plans.

The list was pretty short. Take out trash. Take out recycling. Clean bathroom in case someone comes over. Write in blog. Write a letter to my sister in South Sudan. Heady stuff.

But a friend dropped by and I had to entertain. We watched 3.5 hours or seven episodes of “Everybody Loves Raymond”. We laughed for three and a half hours. We were both cured of the post election blues. Somewhat.

This is how I prepare for company. First I make sure I have something to wear. You never know when someone will drop by. My fave outfit around the house is a t-shirt and loose fitting pants. If I’m getting ready for an appointed visit, I dress a little more formally. Like wearing a bra.

I don’t bother cleaning that much for company but the bathroom is important. I clean the bathroom fairly regularly. The kitchen is another matter entirely. Dishes pile up. I don’t have the luxury of hiding them in the dishwasher because I don’t have one. Luckily my kitchen is hidden away so it’s not an issue. And almost all the people who visit me and know me well know what to expect. My kids know where everything is and are not surprised by the clutter. My close friends come to see me, not my housekeeping skills.

My apartment is homey and comfy. And I always have treats for the grandkids.

ADPOV (a daughter’s point of view):

So basically, folks, you really know where you stand w my mom based on whether she wears a bra (Mom, am I bra worthy?).

Mom, missed you talking about your pantry. I’ve heard you say “My family knows to stay away.” Think you cleaned it recently so we can no longer find the kingdom of Narnia there.

LOVE that you got caught up in 3 hours of ELR therapy! I just realized why Charlie comes around. It’s not just for the chance to see you hang loose, it’s for the laughter. Like where you’ve settled in your relationship w Charlie (a man who has had a crush on my mom her whole life, basically, folks).

So many directions we can go here, but! I like the “How do you Prepare for Company?” Theme. 

Cindy’s Golden rules for company:

1. Music + snacks + drink. That is all you need. The rest will take care of itself.

2. Build it and they will come. Throw the date out, invite the people and the rest is history.

3. Early guests will be put to work. Or late guests for that matter! This isn’t intentional. I bust my ass every time I have family or company over. Hard to get it all done as a single working parent. Clean bathrooms and vacuuming the living and dining rooms are important to me.

4. You are last. Often when guests arrive I haven’t even showered or dressed. The last party I hosted I actually wore a dress. So I guess that’s my barometer for success… Whether I’m dressed. 🙂

Mom, I am so glad you found a way to build your own dome in Seattle… Sounds like Raymond and Charlie helped a little. 🙂

Zero Dark Thirty

6 Nov

A movie title that should be about Seattle at 4:30 in the afternoon from November till March. But it’s not. It’s about capturing Osama Bin Laden with all the latest technology available to the richest nation on earth.

The best and also the worst thing about that movie is how technology can do just about anything these days. But does it make us happy? Can it make the sun come out?

I just turned on the lights, feeling so much better. I still don’t like the fact that my automatic night light has been on for fifteen minutes and it’s not even five o’clock yet. It’s just not right. Can’t we put a dome over Seattle and light this place up?

I’m a little off my game today. Here’s to a better day tomorrow. I have stuff to do!

ADPOV(A daughter’s point of view):

1. Mom, you should have made this movie first. Or make a musical about long, dark WET winters in Seattle. Let’s call Uncle Chris for a brainstorm sesh!

2. Auto-nightlight at 4:45? Wow… that stinks, but… It was my favorite thing you wrote! Hilarious.

3. Love your point about technology and happiness. I see facebook as the ultimate approval/acknowledgement tool. Need a fix?? Post and see the acknowledgement pour in! If not, you get sad. It should all really come from within, right mom?

2 new features I’d like to experiment with for our blog:

a. DAILY Fridge: Something I did today I think you’d be proud of (perhaps me yearning for acknowledgement, but meant to be sorta cute in a mom/daughter sorta way.

b. QUesTions for MOM: Where my generation asks yours something, and you enlighten all of us “yutes.” It’d be cool if after you answered it you shot one back so I have a chance to make your generation more “hip.”

Which idea do you want to try?

Mom…. I love you. And I LOVE your writing. Here’s to tomorrow being ON all day!

 

Telling Stories Day 2: Daughter’s POV

5 Nov

Mom is right, she never got into culinary pursuits. She had some great staples, though. Here are my 5 favs:

1. Enchiladas!!

2. Chicken stir fry (I used to sneak in the kitchen and steal the chicken chunks out of the pan)

3. Chili Mac (yyyeah!!)

4. Peas and chicken cream stuff in a pastry shell (the one my sis tried to emulate w flour, beans and water… FAIL!)

5. Spaghetti. Even plain buttered noodles were good, mom. 🙂

6. New addition: Cheerio/raisen/butterscotch bars!!

My mom’s non-cooking prowess has rubbed off on me. I am not sure who she is referring to when she says “daughters wanted to compete.” I am not in this category.

Tonight is “tranny” night – aka transition night… I get my girls back from their dad after being away 4 days and change. It’s always a busy night and I’m grateful they enjoy what I like to call T&T — tuna and top ramen! Way less ambitious than anything mom ever used to cook.

Mom: Give up the sweet potatoes. We never liked them much anyway. Clam dip is your forte. Please make 2 batches – one for me and one for everyone else.

LOVE you, mom! And love your cooking. Most of all, glad you spend more time on us than cooking. 🙂 Congrats on your blog!!!

  

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Telling Stories, Day 2

4 Nov

The only thing good about November is Thanksgiving. It’s all about the food and the family. The whole month is a windup to that glorious day.

It comes with some trepidation, however. For me its always about the sweet potatoes. I am not good at it. This year I want just cut a hole in the top of a sweet potato, put a candle in it and use it as a centerpiece. I hate that damn vegetable. It is the symbol of my ineptness in the kitchen and my inability to pick a good side dish for family gatherings. Nobody ever says , “Wow Mom, what great sweet potatoes!”

Not that I’m in any great competition or anything like that. Years ago I gave up my hosting Thanksgiving to the next generation. My daughters all started to become pretty damn good cooks and wanted to show off. Who am I to quash that kind of enthusiasm? Besides that, my signature dish is clam dip, the thing you eat while you’re waiting for the main event.

My clam dip is epic. It has been the mainstay of my culinary life. My Dad invented it in the 1950s. He was digging clams and a tub of cream cheese wandered by. The rest is history. Potato chips hadn’t been invented yet, we would just eat it from the shell. When ruffles started having ridges we knew we had a winning conveyance.

So this year I’m bringing Clam Dip to the feast. I am done with sweet potatoes.