Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Something to Confess



This is my truth...... I really, truly, positively and without a doubt....


Can Not Stand Vegetables!  There I said it!  You can cutely call them


"veggies".  You can use them as characters to tell Bible stories.  You can


creatively arrange them in a display for the kitchen table.  Nope!  Still


don't like them! With heels firmly dug in... lips pursed shut... arms crossed


tightly in front of me, you will not get me excited to see them on my plate..


at all!!  That is why I felt like a bit of a fake with the last post.  You might


have been led to believe that I went there to stock my son's fridge for the


coming week. HA!! No, I went because it was an event with so much more 


to offer.  And I found happiness!  That I can handle!


 Beets in all colors ..... still not brave enough to eat them.  In a smoothie, yes,.. alone, no!


Garlic flowers that are only available in the Spring


I will completely agree with you that vegetables are a feast for the eyes.  


Rich in color!  Fabulous textural appearance!  But the taste leaves me


going "Eckkkk!"  Now maybe I can blame my mother.  Fresh vegetables


were boiled to death leaving them lifeless on my plate.  Peas were usually


from a can.  Shudder!  And salad would be iceberg lettuce that she would


sprinkle with sugar to get me to eat it.  That one cracks me up!  {I 


know that one day my sons will share stories of the wacky things I did to


get them to cooperate.  So, mom, no righteous fingers are pointing 


at you!}
Kohlrabi... reminds me of an extraterrestrial creature


With all that in mind I decided to challenge myself.  I would put on my "big


girl panties" and head to the local farmer's market.  There I would avoid


choosing anything remotely familiar to my tastebuds and reach for new


territory.  People.... it was a struggle!!!  Pathetic, huh?  But this is what


I ended up with.........


Garlic flowers, sugar snap peas, red potatoes, kohlrabi and yellow squash



I had to add the potatoes and sugar snap peas just for some familiarity.


No going completely cold turkey or I might forever be a lost cause!!


With the aid of the internet, I searched on http://allrecipes.com/ to see


what I could do with the yellow squash and am going to try this recipe..


                                  Summerly Squash
Ingredients





  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 2 medium tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 small zucchini, cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 2 small yellow summer squash, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil

Directions

  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir the onion about 5 minutes, until tender. Mix in the tomatoes, and season with salt and pepper. Continue to cook and stir about 5 minutes. Mix in the zucchini, yellow squash, bay leaf, and basil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove bay leaf before serving.



Substituting olive oil, using fresh basil, some of the garlic flowers (the stem 


can be chopped and cooked through) and parboiling the red potatoes, you 


will find me in front of the stove doing my best impersonation of June 


Cleaver!   


Please, oh, please.. oh, PLEASE have this taste good!  {Notice I did not say


"great".  "Good" is good enough for now!!)  And if not, I will resort to what


my husband would do to make the boys eat their broccoli... sprinkle with


good ol' parmesean cheese.  I've got it ready and waiting in the wings,


people!  Wish me luck!













Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Five a Day... No Excuses!




It's summer and the farmer's markets, here in the midwest, are just


getting started.  Weekly opportunities to purchase fresh produce in the


open air... chancing into meeting your neighbors and friends while nibbling 


on a sample of bread that has been dipped in flavored, aromatic olive 


oil ... or while picking out just the right bouquet of flowers to grace that


evening's dining room table. But I have to admit that I forget to go to 


the one in our local village. The prices seem a bit high... it's bit small in


the number of vendors... and when I bite into a strawberry I want to see


RED all the way through!  Yes.... I'm spoiled.  I admit it.  Because I


know that this weekly excursion could be different.  




No, that is not a photo of me but of some adorable young woman


shopping for produce at San Luis Obispo's Thursday Farmer's Market!


Named one of the "happiest places on earth", SLO makes this event a


party!  The street is closed to traffic and vendors set up their wares.


Produce that is truly fresh.. fresh... fresh......!!!













Restaurants  fire up their grills or smokers so you can eat your dinner


 al fresco ... oh! the aroma wafting in the air to draw you in!




                        that's tri-tip steak being grilled... the BEST!!




and grilled chicken that conjures up memories of the summer church


suppers we had in our town when I was little.. still can't be beat!


Entertainment is provided not only by the characters you meet...




but also by kids that show their talents.  These boys rocked it!!




By now,  are you ready for some dessert?  How about some strawberry


shortcake?  I must admit that I don't understand not serving it on a


buttermilk biscuit but I guess the times have changed.






With all the willpower I could muster up, I passed this by! I know...


I'm shocked too!  And remember how I said I missed strawberries that 


are red all the way through?  They do exist!  I bought a whole quart, bit 


into the first berry and thought I died and went to heaven! Sweet.... warm


from being outdoors... and RED all the way through! Mmmmmmmm!!!






So how about hopping on your bike.... yes, SLO even provides a 


safe and free place to park it......






... and meet me there this Thursday!      Ahhhhhhhh ... if only!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Say it isn't so!!!!



Yup... feeling like good ol' Charlie Brown!  There he is, all fired up to 


kick the football as Lucy holds it in place for him.  Arrrrggghhh!  She


yanked it right out from under his foot at the last minute!


Lucy = Google/iphoto


football = my blog 


Charlie = me, happily writing away and uploading photos for a new post.


Google yanked the ability for me to continue on, as I have used up all


the GB's available... and in the middle of a post, no less!




How was I supposed to know that I am to constrain the size of the photos?


You mean there is an limit to space available if I don't???


Certainly is!  And that means a trip to the Apple store to figure all this out!


So, until I get the answers and learn more techie stuff, this will have to do


for now.  I'm so sad ~ waaaaaaaa!!!!



Thursday, June 7, 2012

Perched In A Moment in Time



As moms, we save the precious memories of our children growing


up. We know to preserve those moments in time by storing away the 


photos we've amassed over the years (no moment left undocumented)..


certificates earned through school or sports... 


drawings that show what interested them at that moment... Oh!  the 


changes in their development depicted in each one.....


cards handmade for you on Mother's Day or a birthday... 


each carefully chosen and placed in a box tucked away under the stairs


or in a corner of the attic.  These tangible items produce gentle 


smiles, bursts of laughter and yes, even quiet tears, as we gently touch 


each one and have a moment in time come back to life.  


But sometimes we don't need "things" to trigger a memory.


Sometimes...


if we are lucky enough.... 


if we pay close attention.... 


an experience can happen right before our eyes where our grown children


dissolve into the child we once knew.  


I know... it happened to me!




There I was, once again, hunkered down in a wool coat that shielded me


from the chill in the air due to the sun setting on a spring evening.  It 


helped take away the discomfort from sitting on a metal bleacher.  


Yes, I said metal bleacher! While visiting my middle son, he had a softball


game to go to.  He had found a way to blend his passion for sports with


an opportunity to network with other young professionals.  They


made it into the semi-finals and this game could not be missed.  


"Do you want to come and watch?"


Not that sitting on the sidelines was my favorite thing to do... even as a


young mom... but I was not going to miss this.  Not for the world!


There were no crowds.  There weren't other mothers to sit next to.  No


concession stands.  Those times are past.  It was just me and one other


guy who was the boyfriend of one of the girls playing. We chatted while


his eyes gazed in the direction of a new love and my eyes fixated on


my son in the outfield.  Yup... there was that arm that could rocket the


ball from left field to first base still hitting the baseman's mitt with


spot-on accuracy.   I've peeled back a layer of time. When his team


was ready to come in for their turn at bat I saw another layer peel


away.  His unique gait was still present. When it was his turn at bat,


that is when the floodgates opened up.  No .... that was not a man


of 29 up there positioning the bat just so.  That was my child of 11.


And I was that young mom of ..... well, that doesn't matter!! (tee, hee).


His intensity was visible as he waited for just the right pitch.  And there


it was!  Crack goes the bat as it hits the ball on its sweet spot!  I shoot up


off that bleacher shouting, "Run, Michael, Run!!!"" (as if he needed 


direction from me!).  He rounds first.  (I'm now whooping!)  He touches


second.  (I'm fiercely clapping my hands now, oblivious to the arthritic 


finger that usually hurts when I do that).  He approaches third as the


outfielder on the opposite team has finally reached the ball and is 


ready to throw it.  "RUN, Mike.... RUNNNN!" And then he did what he 


always did at 11.  He headed home with the possibility of getting out. 


"Oh, my gosh... OH, MY GOSHHHH!!!!"  


"Safe!" says the ump. And I admit tears came to my eyes.  Just at they


are now.  That child of 11 made it home and now slowly disappeared 


being replaced by my grown son of 29.




I was so surprised at how easily.... smoothly ... and effortlessly I slipped


back to old familiar territory.  But habits of motherhood die hard, don't


they?  And would we have it any other way?  I will always feel so 


blessed to have had that moment in time.  A memory that will not be


placed in a box along with the other items but one that will have its 


special place in my heart!  Priceless!!!