Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Here We Go Again

   I'm here on the eve of another April A-Z blogging challenge.
   Last year I told myself I wouldn't put myself through that again, but about a week ago I found my fingers typing in my information, signing up to participate again this year.
    I considered doing a theme, but I set that idea aside and decided to do a variety of things instead. I'll be including the Chocolate Gob and Salmon Wellington recipes I had mentioned last week, plus memories, and an assortment of other topics.
      Join me tomorrow as I kick off this year's A-Z challenge.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Wednesday Hodgepodge

I was surprised and excited when I checked my email and saw that the Wednesday Hodgepodge is back! I've missed it. Its creator, Joyce, has supplied a new list of questions this week for anyone who wants to answer.

From this Side of the Pond
1. Howdy Hodgepodgers. It's kind of fun to be back, isn't it?  Last time we met was September, 2018. Tell me something big-important-happy-or sad that's happened in your life since that date. Just one thing. We don't know how long this current isolation situation is going to last and we might need to dole out our news bit by bit.

I mentioned this only a few posts ago, but the bridal shower for our soon to be daughter-in-law was a big-important-and happy event!

2. Might as well get this out of the way early on...COVID-19. On a scale of 1-5 how serious are you about keeping your distance? Explain. fyi-I didn't create the scale but have seen it several places online. Also fyi-we won't only have virus related questions each week, but for this first one it feels right.

1-Not at all, living normally
2-Cautious but still going out
3-Going out as needed, mostly home or working from home, still seeing friends/family
4-Extremely limited, only going out when unavoidable, minimal contact with people
5-Full lockdown, no one in or out

Kind of between a three and a four. Those of us who can, stay home and don't see friends/family. But the rest of our immediate family has work that is considered essential, so they're still busy. It's straight to and from work now, though. No business lunches or enjoyable outside of the home activities.

3. Raise your hand if you think you might run out of steam in the cooking department before it's all said and done? What's something delcious you've cooked or eaten in your own kitchen in the past week?

Cooking hasn't changed that much for me. I was used to creating menus and cooking all our food anyway, so as long as I can find ingredients it's normal to me.

Recently we had two delicious things that had not made an appearance on any of my menus previously. I had been organizing the freezer and found a forgotten box of puff pastry dough that I decided needed to be used that very day. Because of all the salmon we had on hand (due to doctor's orders for LV's eye) I discovered I have all the ingredients needed to make Salmon Wellingtons. They turned out absolutely delicious.

The second delicious treat happened to be Chocolate Gobs. I have made gobs before, but was never really happy with the filling. I stumbled across a recipe for gob filling that was different, and it sounded really good so I decided to give it a try. It really was so, so good! I'll be sharing the recipe in the next couple of days.

4. What's a television show or movie you've seen recently (it could be an oldie) that you really liked?

We recorded and have been watching Seven Worlds One Planet. It's excellent. We love seeing all the animals and nature, and the narrator's voice is the best!

5. Share something funny you've seen or heard this week.

I enjoy corny puns, so when I saw this it made me smile.

6. Insert your own random thought here

I discovered an extremely easy and yet effective way to clean the vent in the stove hood. I should have done a before and after of it. I could hardly believe my eyes when the dirty gunky thing turned into sparkling clean with zero scrubbing effort on my part.

All I did was bring a big pot of water to a boil. Set a bowl in the kitchen sink and place the dirty vent into it. Once my water was boiling I poured it over the vent and added a scoop of OxiClean powder. As it bubbled and dissolved it lifted all that caked on gunk right off the vent and left it sparkling.

Easy Peasy! And super satisfying!

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Miracles Still Happen / God's got This

     The miracle of spring time is unfolding before our eyes once again. Daffodils and other spring flowers have started growing. Already their buds are bulging ready to burst into bloom any day. The happy sound of birds singing fills the air during the day, and at night the spring peepers take their turn serenading the countryside.
     There is so very much to be thankful for, and I'm choosing to have my thoughts dwell on the good things that are still happening all around us. Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Philippians 4:8
     Speaking of good things. We met with LV's surgeon last week to see how his right eye is progressing and schedule the next surgery. The doctor examined it and kept repeating over and over. "It's a miracle! It's a miracle!" His lens and retina have both been healed completely. There is no need for any additional surgery. The only explanation is God answered all those prayers for healing.
     We delight in praising Him! And rest in the assurance that what ever the future may hold He will be right there with us.
     Be of good courage and cheer my dear friends/readers. God's got this!

Monday, March 2, 2020

February Recap

    Life happened and February passed with only two blog posts. A record low for me.

  •     February started off great. My Mom called on the 1st and we talked for almost two hours, simply chatting and catching up with each other's lives. It was wonderful. That afternoon I tried the recipe for Poppyseed Pie. It looked absolutely beautiful once it was baked and we all looked forward to trying it after church the next day.

      As it happens ... Poppyseed Pie was not meant to be enjoyed. The filling was gelatinous, and even though an entire cup of sugar was in the pie there was a strong earthy almost bitter flavor. We all tried it, but we all ended up getting rid of our piece in ways other than eating it. It was the first and hopefully only fail in the 52 Pies challenge we're doing this year.

  • Monday the 3rd started off well, but took a distinct turn in the afternoon when an air tank exploded, injuring LV quite badly. As he was being transported to the hospital my Mom called again, this time with the news that my Aunt Katie had passed away. With what was happening here, the decision on whether or not to attend the funeral was made for us.

     The rest of the week dragged by with hospitals, doctors, surgeries, and what felt like endless hours of waiting.

  • There was of course all the eye care, and all that involved. I stopped in at the library and loaded up a stack of audio books for LV to listen to until his left eye had recovered enough to where he could do things other than just listen.
  •  At the encouragement of one of her friends Sharon made a guess at how many candies were in this jar the library had on their counter for a Valentine's Day contest. Turns out her guess was the closest. She had guessed 430, and there had been 433. She was happy to have won, but after tasting them, the jar simply became a part of the February decor in our schoolroom.

  •  I cooked more salmon in the month of February than I had in all our years of married life combined. I've found some new recipes that have become a favorite. One of them is glazing the salmon with several applications of Mike's Hot Honey.
  •  Another highlight of the month was the bridal shower for Kenneth's fiancĂ©e. It was absolutely lovely. I had to leave before it was quite over to go home and take care of LV's eyes. She's a sweet young lady, and was understanding why I had to leave early.
  • Sharon and I accepted a cleaning job. A semi truck that had been the 'home' of a driver who had smoked a lot. We were supposed to clean it out and hopefully remove most of the lingering odor. It was a most unpleasant task. We spent hours cleaning and scrubbing until it looked way better than it had. It was inspected by the people who had hired us and pronounced great and smelling clean, so we loaded up our cleaning supplies and came home where we immediately washed the clothes we had been wearing, showered, washed our hair, and brushed our teeth trying to get rid of the smoke smell that had latched onto us.

    Day by day we made our way through the month. I became way better and more comfortable caring for LV's injuries. Day by day we were so thankful that we are still all together, and for every little bit of progress of his healing.
     A few days before the end of February we were ecstatic when one morning LV opened his right eye and could see. It's still not back to where it had been, but going from completely blind one day to being able to know what your're looking at the next day is a huge jump in the progress of healing. We're thrilled! All glory and praise to God!