Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Cooking up a storm

One of the New Years resolutions I pretended not to make is to try and eat dinner together as a family as much as possible.  I don’t enjoy cooking, so if I’m busy with work or anything else, cooking is the first thing to go.  When that happens – and it happens more often than not - the kids make themselves toast or cereal or find something in the fridge or Dale will make scrambled eggs for them.  Neve hates this and begs for a “sit-down supper” every day.  When I came across this article, I decided to turn over a new leaf.  I figure I can use all the help I can get with keeping my children out of prison.  Especially Neve. 

I happened to get two new cookbooks for my birthday/Christmas this year.  Evidently other people feel like I need help in this area too.  It’s working; it’s jump-started my dinner goal.    Last week I tried a recipe called Unrolled Cabbage Rolls, which was a hit with the whole family.  Yesterday I made salmon burgers that contained feta cheese and dill, among other things.  Today I made portabella mushroom fajitas, which Dale said was the best meal he’s ever eaten.  He didn’t say the best meal he’s ever eaten at home, which would be understandable; he said the best meal EVER.  Unfortunately he worked late both days so we didn't actually all eat together, but it was close.  After he read that article, he's going to try harder.  Guilt is awesome.

Since I’m not a confident cook, I follow recipes to the letter.  I feel like if I don’t follow it perfectly, it won’t turn out.  If it calls for fresh dill, I don’t substitute dried dill.  If it calls for green pepper and I only have a red one, I will make a special trip to Safeway to get a green one.  I’m not even joking.  So the salmon burger recipe called for fresh salmon fillets chopped up in the food processor.  It never entered my mind that I could have used canned salmon instead until my sister mentioned it later.  I also made my own bread crumbs because the recipe told me to.  It’s been a big time commitment.  Hopefully I’ll learn to cut corners or I’ll have to quit my job.  I think that’s a sacrifice Dale would be willing to make.


I sometimes read old blog entries and the thing I enjoy most is reading funny things the kids have said.  As they age, the things they say aren’t as cute anymore so when they do say something funny, I have to write them down.  Here are two recent conversations.

Me, waking Neve up for school in the morning (I’m not a morning person, but I pretend):  “Wake up Neve!  It’s a new day!  Get up and make the most of it!  Who knows what today will bring?!” 

Neve, still half asleep:  “Gym.”


In the van on the way home after picking up Neve and Spencer from school, I told Spencer to text Chloe to see how close to home she was (she walks home) and if we should pick her up.  Chloe texted right back with: “Umm sure?  Never say that again.”  When she got into the van, I asked her what that was about.  She showed me the text she thought I had sent:  Yo dawg.  Wanna ride?  Where ye at?"  (Spencer likes to mix in Old English whenever he can).   This doesn't sound as hilarious now as it did at the time, but we laughed our heads off.


Hope you're all staying warm. It's been bitterly cold here, but I have a new mantra:  

There's no such thing as cold weather, only inappropriate clothing.

I believe the original saying is "bad" weather, but "cold" is more relevant and also I'm not sure how one would dress appropriately for a hurricane.  You should see how I bundle up for walking Neve to and from school.  And I'm not cold.  I still hate winter, but as long as I don't check the temperature beforehand and dress in five layers from head to toe, I'm finding it bearable.  Ask me again in a week.

Oh, and the bathroom shelves are done.  Just need to add some finishing touches this weekend and will post pictures after that.


Mrs White said...

My kids are pretty much grown now. But, eating together as a family is something my Uncle would always encourage me to do but something I never really followed. I now have regrets and understand its importance. Will try to implement on special occasions when everyone is together. In the meantime, we kinda eat the same time for the most part, just not at the table together having conversation. Right now in part to my limited space. However, when that changes, it is definitely something that I will make a new rule. Having a family meal and blessing God for our meal before we partake.
I can relate.
Thanks for sharing.

Mrs White

Daniel said...

The Spencer/Chloe text was hilarious here and now too!

You need to watch what recipes you follow. If it says to grow your own cattle, maybe you should just keep looking.

Appropriate clothing goes a long way toward enjoying winter. Our big puffy down-filled parkas and mitts let us enjoy Montreal at 30 below. That, and flasks of brandy. But the school might frown on you swigging that as you wait for Neve.

Shannon Silvestri said...

I wanted to believe your quote but the possible -37 before the wind chill expected on Monday is sorta wrecking things for me.

Anonymous said...

I also laughed out loud at the texting scene!! Especially Chloe's response. Hilarious!!

Good for you on the cooking! But yes, do know you can substitute whatever you want whenever you want!! I think of recipes as the base plan. Let it go from there!

Checking weather - I stopped a long time ago. I just always dress for rain. Ok, I know, that's not Winnipeg, but even then, I just stopped checking. I always assumed effing cold and dressed for it! You're much happier when you don't actually know that its -25 with windchill of -47.


Anonymous said...

For real...Steve would text that...exactly that. And, I think it would be funnier if it was you who sent it, Dawg. :)