Friday, December 23rd, 2011
We’re at my parents’ house for Christmas. I grew up in this house, so it evokes lots of memories of Christmas traditions. My mom used to have a candy bowl each year stocked with Hershey’s kisses and Rolo. We would play music from Mannheim Steamroller, Julie Andrews, Evie, and Glad while we made sweet potato delight, ambrosia, cookies and pecan pie. I usually received Turtles and film (how antiquated!) in my stocking.
What are some of your favorite traditions, past or present?
Sunday, December 18th, 2011
Another entry in the “I cannot believe I haven’t written this one yet” category. We had a dinner party tonight, and as I was cleaning up, I was thinking of the days in my apartment without a dishwasher. I didn’t avoid entertaining during those days, but I also didn’t entertain nearly as much as I do now. Thank goodness for a dishwasher!!
Friday, December 16th, 2011
Whether it’s in the car, at home, or in the office, ’tis the season to be thankful for heat generation!
Friday, December 9th, 2011
I don’t thank God nearly enough for having a place to live.
Sunday, December 4th, 2011
We put up our Christmas tree yesterday, and it is beautiful. I have always loved decorating the tree and then just sitting near it. The smell is fantastic. When I come down the stairs into our living room, I get hit with this deliciously Christmasy blast.
Every time I think about our tree, I’m singing this song in my head. Enjoy.
Sunday, November 27th, 2011
We decided to come home from our Thanksgiving trip last night instead of today, and I’m very thankful we did. Today I’m resting, doing laundry, and generally recuperating from travel (and overeating) to prepare for the work week.
Tuesday, October 25th, 2011
We drank a lot of water on our vacation, both bottled and tap. When we got home, I found it interesting that our tap water at home tasted better than even the bottled water elsewhere. Maybe it’s just my home bias, but hey, I’m glad we have tasty water! More importantly, I’m glad we have a faucet and can safely drink what comes out of it.
Monday, October 24th, 2011
For some reason, Italians don’t seem to believe in toilet seats. At least that was the impression I got from the bathrooms I visited on vacation. I found it both odd and inconvenient. Who knew I would be so thankful for toilet seats upon my return home?!
Wednesday, September 21st, 2011
There are things I can do, and there are things I can’t do. Gardening or any derivative thereof falls into the latter category. I guess I *could* plant something, technically, but the desire to do so is pretty much nonexistent. I have one houseplant that survives despite my care.
Thus, I am extremely grateful that people exist who do these things well. The front of our house – a mere patch of grass – has been graced with the original set of bushes for awhile. We never pruned them, so each rainy season basically produced an entirely new plant on top of the existing plant. It was just lovely. Every so often, some weeds would sprout up. (Did you know weeds can grow as tall as I am?)
We finally attended to this issue – I’m sure much to our neighbors’ delight. The mutant bushes have been hauled away, and small, neat plants have taken their place. I might have to purchase some shears now.
Sunday, September 18th, 2011
I didn’t take a photo of tonight’s dinner, because I figure a pork chop is a pork chop, so I’ll let you use your imagination. I made one of my husband’s favorites, which is a recipe my mom made when I was growing up. It’s super-easy and the best part is that I always have the ingredients for the sauce on hand! I bet you do, too.
Pork Chops with Orange Jus
You can use the number of pork chops you need and adjust the amount of jus accordingly. This batch is what I use to cook two chops.
1 cup orange juice
½ cup brown sugar
2 tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
Trim and tenderize the chops, then put them in a baking dish/Pyrex pan. Mix the jus and pour over chops; bake covered on 350 degrees until the internal temperature on a meat thermometer reaches 135 degrees. The time in the oven depends on the thickness of the chops; it ranges from 20-30 minutes, I have found. I always pour the jus into little bowls after cooking and serve with the chops, as they’re best when dipped in it.