Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Monday, November 18, 2013
We usually stuff our turkey (the stuffing tends to flavor the bird from the inside out.) You do run the risk of the turkey drying out if you stuff it as it has to cook longer, we solve this problem in two ways. First I make some herb butter by mixing room temp unsalted butter with a combination of fresh and dried herbs and spices (remember what I said about something special ;).) This is then rubbed into the bird UNDER the skin. this will help with seasoning the meat, crisping the skin, and adding extra moisture to the meat. We also rub the skin with olive oil and season liberally with salt. Do not under season your bird folks! We then cover the turkey with foil until the last 30 - 60 minutes of cooking.
As I said we stuff our bird, and always make extra on the side. Our stuffing is actually my wife's grandmother's recipe and consists of stuffing bread, chicken stock, herbs, onions, green and red pepper, hamburger, and Chourico (Portuguese hot sausage pronounce Sher-eese). This hot and spicy stuffing is a family favorite and is very special.
Basic mashed potatoes are comfort food for me, so I tend not to mess with them. I'm not adverse to adding cheese, but beyond that LEAVE THEM ALONE!!!! What makes ours special is that we use my wife's stand mixer to whip the potatoes with butter and milk. Yum!!!!!
Okay, here is where I like to get a little fancy. Over the years I have tried various ways to make corn more exciting and this year I will be making creamy corn and spinach with Parmesan cheese. I've made this a few times and everyone seems to love it so, hey why not?
Candy them with butter, brown sugar, and mini-marshmallows. Do I need to say anything else about them? I didn't think so.
Green Bean Casserole
We don't make this ourselves, but my sister-in-law brings it every year, and it is delicious. Thanksgiving just wouldn't be Thanksgiving without it.
Broccoli and Cheese
My mother-in-law loves broccoli and cheese and well, why should I be the only one to get their favorite comfort food. This is one is for you Mom.
I can't believe I almost forgot this one. I'm in charge of making the turkey gravy every year, and yes, I make it from scratch and it is to die for.
I hope you enjoyed hearing about my dinner menu. Hey let me know what your traditions are, I would love to hear them. Next time I'll be talking about appetizers.
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
I thought that the well done speach at the end of the race was all the recognition we should require
I've learned over the years not to ignore the nudging of the Spirit, so that night during my prayer time I let God speak to my heart, and what I heard surprised me, "Thank You." Did I hear that right? God was thanking me? He was, and I realized He was thanking me everytime someone was touched by the worship on Sunday morning, everytime I was obedient to his leading, and everytime I helped our congregation to fix their eyes on Jesus.
I let God speak to my heart, and what I heard surprised me
God is telling His servants,
"Thank you and keep up the good work."
I realized that God is using those that come up and tell me how much they loved the music, or what a great voice I have, to let me know He appreciates my willingness to serve, to put myself out there (way outside my comfort zone I might add), and to be obedient to His call. I'm not saying these things to brag or to puff myself up, but rather to remind myself and others that God is telling His servants, "Thank you and keep up the good work."
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
The next few days are going to be crazy busy. I'm going to training Wednesday morning for a new job. (I'm going to be doing some bookkeeping from home.) Then coming home to do some school with my daughter (she is mostly self directed but still have to go over her math and science lessons, plus she has a test in Bible.) After that I'm off to the church office to get some treasurer things done. Finally to round off the day I'll be teaching the K-2 boys at church. And that's just Wednesday.
The rest of the week is looking just as busy. I'm exhausted just thinking about it. I know with my fibro I'm going to crash hard come Saturday afternoon, but I thrive on this kind of pace. My body may be screaming no, but my mind says bring it on. Oh, by the way, Christmas is just around the corner. LOL.
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Monday, November 11, 2013
I say all this because it's important to honor our parents while they are still with us. Even if they haven't done anything deserving of honor, God says to honor them because He gave them to us for parents. So today I want to honor my father, not because he was a great dad, or even because he was a veteran, but simply because he was my dad. I hope he found peace with God at the end, so we can sit down at the great table in heaven and talk about all the things we did have in common.
Dad, thank you for your service, I miss you and love you.
Living in an apartment, we gather around our kitchen table for dinner. It can expand to seat eight, though in a pinch we can seat ten ( we've managed to get 13 of us around it one year but that is just too crowded). This year we are looking at at least ten if not more. Any overflow will be set up at a smaller table in our parlor. The table I set for the photo shoot is set for eight.
Friday, November 8, 2013
I have an entire mariachi band.
I'm saying this because, as a stay at home dad, I have to perform some functions that are usually placed under the woman category by society, and even by most christians.One of those things over the past few years is planning our Thanksgiving dinner. I have really gotten into planning the menu and even creating a festive tablescape for our guests.
This year hasn't been any different, with the exception that I will be sharing my creation on my blog. I had just finished photographing the table, complete with place settings and burning candles, when my wife comment that I was just not like other guys. Even my own wife of 20 plus years is taken aback by my creative side at times. she got me thinking though.
I'm obsessed with table settings. Did I follow the correct etiquet rules, does the coffee spoon go to the right or on top, which side does the napkin go on??? Why am I like this? Then it hits me, my mom. One of my fondest memories from my childhood was setting the table everynight for dinner. And when I says setting the table, I'm talking the whole nine yards. Frist you hand to remove the table runner and all the knickknacks. Then you had to pick out a tablecloth. Followed by the dinnerplates, glasses, and silverware, which my mom would gently correct me if something was out of place. My mom taught me how to set a formal table, and and informal one, and indirectly taught me the importance of sitting down for a family meal everynight. The meal would almost always end with coffee and dessert, and then everything was whisked away into the kitchen to be washed and the table would get its runner and knickknacks replaced once more.
I'm obsessed with table settings.
Familty dinners around the table. Something that our busy modern families hardly ever have time for anymore. maybe that is why I obsess over the holiday meals, I'm trying to recapture the warmth and nostalgia of simpler times. By setting an elaborate table I'm not only providing a festive stage for our meal but also for the family to reconnect.
Hey dads (and moms to), how do you help your families reconnect
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
If you are considering a study on the electoral process (whether you're a homeschooler or not) the following resources may prove helpful: