Tuesday, November 27, 2012

PJ Ice Cream Run

... minus the oldest Man-Child ...  Mitchell was off having fun at his bud Joel's that night!


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor; and Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me to "recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness. Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be.
—George Washington

We have had a fun day in the kitchen preparing for Thanksgiving tomorrow.  We enjoyed listening to the The Legend of Squanto from Focus on the Family Radio Theatre while we worked, it was excellent!

The kids had a whole lot of fun making these Oreo Turkeys!  Ours  look quite different than her perfect examples, but memories were made nonetheless! I spent most of  the morning and afternoon preparing some sides for tomorrows dinner and baking pies; two pecan and a favorite of ours, a Bourbon Cherry pie.  

I am excited about tomorrow’s menu as it is pretty traditional but with a couple of fun twists.  I found most of my recipes for tomorrow’s meal on www.thepioneerwoman.com and www.food.com  and we look forward to each delectable bite!  She makes her food look so inviting so I thought I would link to her recipes rather than try to repost them myself! 
Praise God from Whom all blessings flow... Happy Thanksgiving!

Buttered Rosemary Rolls
And some of our traditional favorites...
Sweet Potato Casserole
Simple Stuffing
Bourbon Cherry Pie
3 cups pitted cherries ( I add in some rhubarb)
1 cup sugar
1/4 flour
1 tsp. almond extract
4 T. butter
2 T. bourbon (I double the bourbon)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. tapioca (I actually used 2 T. cornstarch)
1 double pie crust
1 dash salt
Combine cherries, sugars, flour, tapioca (or cornstarch), salt and almond extract.  Pour into a pie shell.  Dot mixture with butter and distribute bourbon over the to.  Add top crust and crimp around edges.  Cut slits in top crust.  Bake for 45 minutes in a 425 degree oven.  Sprinkle a little bit of sugar and cinnamon on the top of the crust when there is about 10-12 minutes of baking left. 



One of JD's turkeys.... I wonder where his chocolate "skin" went!! :-)


So, I wanted to do a quick update on the recipes for Thanksgiving.  I realized after I posted that I would be doing my turkey in my big electric roaster rather than the oven so I went searching for the perfect cooking instructions.  I DID find an excellent set of cooking instructions and our turkey was probably the best one ever done in our roaster!

Both myself and my dear friend Sara tried did the Brussel Sprouts with Balsamic and Cranberries and we both came to the same conclusio n.... way too sweet! Our opinion is that we would cut the sugar in the balsamic mix by half (or maybe even a little more than half) and let the cranberries be the sweetener. 

A couple notes on the Bourbon Cherry pie.  The first time I did the pie was last summer and I put in some rhubarb because I did not have enough cherries.  After doing only all cherries this time I would add rhubarb in if I have it next time. It just seems to add a great texture to the pie that was missing a little this time.  Also, I forgot to say I doubled the bourbon, and I definately like the extra flavor the doubled bourbon gives.  A note for those of you not used to cooking with alcohol ... no worries!  The alcohol cooks away but the residual flavor is outstanding!




Sunday, November 18, 2012

Turkey Trot 2012

Yesterday was SO MUCH FUN!!! I was so nervous for nothing!  I did not sleep well at all the night before, even with a melatonin! You know what I mean?  The kind of sleep where you know your brain is still on and running in the background?!?  I was nervous on so many levels.  Afraid it would be a competitive (not fun) run, afraid of the unknown terrain and simply afraid I might struggle to finish it … even though I have been running 3 miles (and sometimes more) 3x’s a week!

 I am so DELIGHTED that I ran it! It was so not what I was anxious over, AT ALL!  It was FUN and the group we had made it much more than fun… it is a precious memory I will always treasure! We had a fantastic group of runners….some newer runners, some old runners and some cold turkey runners!!   I finished in 37 minutes and some unknown seconds, I forgot to look!  I was the last one of our group to come in (and believe me I am SO ok with that) and there was something quite special about having almost 20 people cheering for you as you come to the end!  I had to fight back tears!  Even with no desire to “compete” in my times, just to run and finish it felt like such an accomplishment!!  

It was also very fun to have Mrs. Vandenbos there.  She is a much loved piano teacher for quite a few in our group of runners, including Mitchell!  She is a marathon runner, so this 5K was small potatoes for her I’m sure!  She did great and she joined us for our “after” photo!

So many in our group did so well! There was about 200 - 300 people participating and many of our group finished under the 30 minute mark (or just over)and we even had some ribbons that were won!  Mitchell finished nicely under 30 minutes, which was his goal.  Taylor B. won 1st for her age group, Roscoe P. won 3rd (I believe it was) for his age group, Titus B. got 3rd in his age group and my sweet hubby got third for his age group with a 21:01 and 19th overall.  I am so proud of him! He was in the 30-39 age group but the two that beat him were younger than him!  No one the same age as him or in the next age group up (40-49) finished before him! I keep telling him that he should actually train more over the next few months so when he turns 40 he will be ready to really run!!  He was quite the runner in HS and when we were first married.  He commonly ran his mile in HS in the 4:20’s with his best time being a 4:10!!! He used to finish his 5K’s between 15-16 minutes! The last official race he ran was almost 18 years ago, about a year after we were married, the Frost Bite Foot Race in Anchorage.  This is a race held in downtown Anchorage in JANUARY!  It was in the single digits for temp. and that did not include the wind chill, it was crazy cold!!   It was very special to me to run my first “race” together with Chad and Mitchell.

We finished our adventure off with a delicious feast at the E’s home…. Egg casserole, Quiche, Blueberry pancakes, sausage, fruit, cinnamon rolls, coffee and sweet fellowship!   It was a very special morning on so many levels.  Completing the Turkey Trot  was an awesome milestone for me, but experiencing it with those dear to my heart was the icing on the cake!  I can’t wait to do it again!!
 Before the run....

(some don't look any worse for the wear)