Sunday, 27 December 2009

Cooking with Kate (Don't Come to Class)

Last night we had 21 people over for dinner. It wasn't really planned - people were asked at the last minute or they just dropped in. Not a problem. There was plenty to eat - I made Lasagna.
This all is basically boring, but you have to understand how far I've come.

When we got married 36 years ago I had a 5 item cooking repertoire.
It consisted of:

1. Pop-tarts (toasted or cold and I preferred the chocolate ones with the vanilla icing)

2. Lady Fingers (This was something my sisters and I invented. You take a piece of buttered toast and sprinkle it with cinnamon sugar and cut it into five strips. We had this for lunch every day one summer while my mom worked and I think I actually had an addiction to it for awhile.)

3. Oatmeal

4. Hamburger Helper (This tasty meal I had learned to make while baby-sitting for my neighbor's kids. Their mom actually served this garbage on a regular basis. I can personally guarantee that no box of any kind of helper every made it into my mom's grocery cart.)

5. Okay there was only really 4 things I could make. I thought I could make hard boiled eggs, however, that wasn't entirely true. One of the first times I attempted to make them, I put them in water to boil. I waited patiently a full 3 minutes before getting bored with the whole process. That's when I decided to go out and take a swim in our apartment pool while waiting for them to finish. A few hours later when I returned there was a spectacular black smoking mess on the stove. 30 years later when they tore down the building on Claremont Mesa Boulevard in San Diego, there was still a lingering odor in my old apartment. So I won't count the eggs as one of my accomplishments.

We did eat back in those days - James did all the cooking. We both worked and until we had kids it was a great arrangement. I became a stay at home mom and it started to annoy James to have to work all day and then come home and start dinner.

But that was then. Now I make huge meals every day and people actually take seconds and sometimes thirds.
But I have a plan! I don't want my daughters to end up like I was, so I'm teaching them to cook. I'm thinking this could be my way out - for awhile anyway.

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Bad Choices

Last night was the big Awana Christmas party at church and my 5 boys did not attend.

Instead of Christmas cheer, they had - "Poppa fear".

Seems that while James and I went next door for dinner with Kara (who unlike her mom is an awesome cook), the boys decided to give the sisters a hard time. There were reports of running through the house, slamming doors, yelling, and hurling the infamous statement, "I'm not listening to you.".

Foolish move on their part.

While the two older brothers wrote "I will respect people in charge" hundreds of times, the three littles sat on stools staring at the wall.

A bad time was had by all. As it should be.

Meanwhile the 5 sisters had a wonderful time at church and we hope to see much improvement in brother behavior when we go out.

Yea right.

Monday, 21 December 2009

He'll Be Home for Christmas

David, our oldest son at home, left for basic training in the Air Force this summer. He graduated in September and James and I flew to Texas to be with him before he left for his tech. school, also in Texas.
Meanwhile, back at home there were alot of kids missing their big brother! The little boys missed their wrestling and playing buddy. They kept a countdown "till David gets home" on the white erase board in the kitchen. We all missed his ability to hook up and fix all the game systems and our v.c.r. sat not working, waiting for his return.
Yesterday, despite a huge snow storm and a sleepover in an airport, David made it home for Christmas. He was greeted with signs, shouts and much anticipation. When he stepped out of the car in his uniform he got a hero's welcome from all. I know in a few days he'll have the kids so wound up that it'll drive me crazy - but that's okay!

Saturday, 19 December 2009

No Bah Humbug Here

Each Christmas is different. Some feel blah and some feel like.....Christmas.
I don't know why, but this ye
ar feels the most Christmassy of all Christmases I can remember.

Maybe it's because of all the little ones we added to our family. I have to admit that doing the bulk of my Christmas shopping at Toys R Us makes me happy. I may look 54 on the outside, but on the inside - I drool over Playmobile and Fisher Price. And this year it's all about boy toys. Before this group, most of my sons have come to me with facial hair and size 10 shoes and have asked for things like CDs and Arepostle shirts for Christmas. This year I have spent hours shopping in the Hot Wheels and Spider man isle and who knew Geo Trax were so cool?

Maybe it's because of all the snow. Right now, outside, there's about 28 inches
on the ground and it promises to keep snowing for another day. There are hills to sled and hours of hot chocolate and board games. It's worth the effort of finding, drying and putting on hats, gloves and snow pants for 8 happy kids.

I know all the gingerbread men and houses and cutting down the tree have added to the merry mood.

And maybe it's because we have spent so much time with this group teaching them about why God had to send Jesus to us. Most of these kids haven't heard the story and talking a
bout it each night has settled a new gratefulness in me for our amazing Savior.