It is amazing, to borrow a theme from 4everMom, how sweet the ordinary days are, especially when they've been lost for a bit. What a nice week, with just the usual rhythms, plus some little excitements--a sleepover, a first swim meet, a star for a great trombone lesson. I am so grateful.
Monday: trying again on the slow cooker cider pork for the crockpot. Potatoes roasted with onions and fennel (see fish and veggie recipe below).
Wednesday: spaghetti (and the little one's first reconciliation! very exciting); at my husband's request, sausage in the crock pot in sauce to go with. Mmm.
Thursday: leftover pork
Friday: freezer meal or out; though I might revisit this rosemary chicken since I have so much rosemary still
So, earlier this month, we were recipients of so much generosity, I made it my business to make dinners for some friends in need this week. I used this chicken taco soup recipe (sigh, at least other people's family's eat this way). I will save the recipe for the day my kids eat soups. It was a truly less-than-10-minute prep soup, and was all yummy and nourishing-feeling when it was done. It was also very bland (I didn't salt it), so next time I will use our actual taco seasoning, but as long as you season more and use the fixings--this was lovely.
Also, we drank all our cider, so I tried this fish and veggie recipe instead since we had all the veggies involved. I should have doubled the veggies--they were so good and we just picked at them while the rest of the stuff finished. They were great. The tilapia was good too--mine still fell apart but it wasn't stinky and went well with the veggies. The kids of course had chicken nuggets but the older boy tasted one of the potatoes and said, "Hey--this tastes like a French fry!" and went on, "But a REAL French fry--you know, not like McDonald's." (Whose fries I happen to enjoy more than almost anything else there, but I did know what he meant and appreciated both how and that he said it.)
Finally, in the effort to cook down the stuff on my counters, I made this sweet potato bisque from an old O magazine, using up ingredients from I don't know when. This was all part of the kitchen-cleanup-cabinet clean out (from the Organized Christmas aspirational series). In that respect, the soup was a great success (and I still adore my handheld blender--it feels like magic to me still). There was a bit of curry hint to it (probably due to, you know, the hint of curry in it), and the consistency and color were great. If I make it again I will use veggie stock to make it vegan. I think my lentils (ok, I know my red lentils) were past their prime so I can't totally recommend it, but it was easy, fast, and nutritious.
I am reading the Christmas prep blogs like they are about a foreign culture this year. It is hard to get in to the spirit when all I want is normalcy. Last night I woke up in a panic hearing a beeping sound that I thought was the carbon monoxide detector in the basement. I stumbled to the steps to listen and realized it wasn't quite mechanical enough. I went to the bathroom and opened a window just in case only to discover we have a cricket whose song mimics the detector alarm almost perfectly. Not cool, cricket. But another reminder: sometimes the chirps that wake you are just crickets, celebrating one last warm night.
Wishing you a week filled with things that bring you joy!