Thursday, April 13, 2017

Birthday Boy

Nathan turned 17 in March.

His requests:

Cinnamon Rolls

Chicken Quesadillas

Five Guys

His gifts:
From Ellie, Abby, and Sam:
Season 1 of Psych

From Hannah and Nick:
Season 2 of Psych

From Dad and Mom:
a boxing style jump rope

a Van halen t-shirt

a Psych t-shirt

an old Rush record we found at an antique store

His dessert:
Peach Pie

Happy 17th Nate the Greatest! 

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Random Realizations and a Recipe

Spring is here and we have been able to sleep with our windows open once again. One morning when the birds began their early morning singing, I realized that was how many a person knew when to arise each day before the advent of alarm clocks.

We live in a two-story house. I find myself silently counting the stairs every time I ascend (11, turn, 5) or descend (5, turn, 11). It is quite unconsciously until I am conscious then I wonder why on earth I have this habit. We also have a cuckoo clock and I find I am counting the cuckoos whenever it rings.

When I sit in my chair to read, I can see the backside of a neighbor's garage. It has two windows. Those two windows are situated perfectly for eyes and I often imagine that the it is a face and wonder what the garage would like to say.

Many of my fellow homeschool parents and friends will encourage one other that college isn't necessary nor right for every child. It is important to raise up those willing to do the blue-collar jobs, which also are vital to our society. But man oh man is that a hard thing to accept if it is your child. The sinful self likes to say that is all good and well in theory, but "my child" is the exception. Well, maybe not. Maybe "my child" needs to be encouraged to look into plumbing or electrical, construction or welding, retail or factory work.

Not too long ago I finished the book, In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson. It is a very good book about America's ambassador, William Dodd, to Germany in the 1930's. Mr. Larson wove the history learned from research of personal letters and documents of the Dodd family into a compelling narrative that was hard to put down. I was a history major in college and during my senior year, my advisor gave me a copy of a set of family letters. My assignment was to read through these, come up with something to weave them together and write a long (I now no longer remember the length) paper. Well, I did terrible. However, Larson's book made me realize all these years later what my history teacher was expecting.

I've been trying very hard to add more vegetables to my diet. This recipe is one I just love. I can not get enough of it and make it quite regularly. For a side dish, a snack, or even for breakfast, this is yummy, yummy, yummy.

 Mediterranean Chopped Salad
(from The 6 Week Cure for the Middle-Aged Middle by Drs. Eades)

2 TBSP red wine vinegar
3/4 tsp salt (I think it needs more so I add more)
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp dried basil
1/8 tsp dried oregano
1/4 cup olive oil
1 large English cucumber, cut into 1/2 inch cubes (I use a regular cucumber)
1/4 medium red onion, thinly sliced
2 or 3 radishes, thinly sliced
1 large tomato, cut into 1/2 inch cubes

In a large bowl, combine the vinegar, salt, pepper, and herbs. Set aside for a few minutes to allow the flavors to combine. Stream in the olive oil whisking all the while to make the dressing.

Add the chopped vegetables, toss well to coat.