Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving! 2

For a change, we are having Thanksgiving at home this year. We are usually in Florida visiting Dad, but since he is recovering from surgery and already surrounded by people, we are staying home, where it's colder than normal and nasty. While we are in the unusual situation of being able to have all the kids, their spouses, and their kids here for the holiday, I must admit I miss the Florida trip. Usually, I prepare a Thanksgiving feast the weekend before the holiday, so I am used to cooking a turkey dinner, so that's nothing new. This year we were going to do it the Saturday after the holiday, but both boys work in retail and must work from 10 to 10 that day. And Andy must work, too So we moved it to the actual holiday.

Of course, the move still had its problems. As with most families, the boys must find a way to celebrate with both their families and their in-laws. They will be having two Thanksgiving feasts. Alissa won't be able to see her in-laws, who live in Arizona, but since Andy must work both Wednesday night and Friday morning, she and her family will be coming up and returning home on the same day. It will be a long day for all of them.

However, I appreciate all of the kids making an effort to get together for Thanksgiving. It will make it a special day for me, and at least for that day, I won't be missing Florida! :) Life is good...

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

And He Cooks, Too!

Since his retirement, Terry has taken up doing several household chores. Now that we are in our new house, he sweeps the floors almost daily, and he does the dishes every night after supper. Of course, he does the dishes because he hates the noise the dishwasher makes, and I won't wash dishes by hand. Therefore, he has taken on that task, which is fine with me.

Most of the time, I do the cooking, although he sometimes pitches in, especially when he feels I'm not doing something correctly. Since he has been retired, he has watched a LOT of cooking shows, and now he knows all there is to know about the proper preparation of food. My almost 39 years of experience don't seem to count for much. Seems I've not been cooking meat correctly all this time. Mind you, everyone ate what I fixed without complaining, but now I find out that I have been either turning it to mush or drying it out. Of course, it's probably true, because I like my meat cooked all the way through, but tender, so I do a lot of braising. I like the way I cook, even if it is wrong.

Okay, I'm off track here. I do appreciate all of Terry's help, even in the kitchen. And if I don't feel like making dessert, and he wants some, he will get up and make it. Hence the picture. The other night at about 8:30, he decided he wanted some muffins, so he headed to the kitchen. He couldn't decide which Martha White kind to make, so he made three varieties--strawberry, blackberry, and lemon poppyseed. These are quick and simple to make, and they are light, so it made a good treat. He used cupcake cups in the muffin tins, and the muffins stuck to the paper of the cups, though, and he was disappointed. It didn't matter. The hot muffins tasted delicious, and I didn't have to make them. That was the best part of all! Life is good...

Monday, November 10, 2008

Happy Marine Corps Birthday!

You can see we have added a few temporary items to our outside decor. Today is the Marine Corps Birthday, as most Marines and their families know, and nobody else probably does. I don't know how old the Marine Corps is, but I know it's well over 200 years. Terry served proudly in the Marines from 1964-1968 during the Vietnam War. While he didn't spend time in Vietnam, he was still a vital part of the war effort, although fortunately he came home safely and wasn't reviled as many servicemen were. Terry's descriptions of what he went through in boot camp make me shudder, but he is very proud of having survived that and feels it made him a better man. Some of the things he describes would in no way be acceptable today, and I wouldn't have considered them acceptable then, but he took them in stride. He said that the tactics were necessary to turn the men into team players who responded to orders unfailingly and enthusiastically, as would be necessary in battle. To this day, he will attest to the value of his service in the Marine Corps, and he remains loyal to it. We have a corner in the den devoted to memorabilia, and for years he has almost considered the Marine Corps birthday more important to remember than his own. I used to think this was silly, but since it has remained important to him, even after 40 years, I have tried each year to remember the day and bake a cake and sometimes even give him a small commemorative present. The kids call and wish him a happy birthday, too. I must admit I don't know what the Marine Corps did to inspire such fierce loyalty in its former members, but it certainly was effective. I guess that's one of the reasons the Marines are the go-to guys in times of crisis. They get the job done.
Of course, the Marine Corps birthday is the day before Veterans' Day, when we honor all military veterans. How appropriate that both holidays should be so close together. Happy Veterans' Day to one and all, and Happy Marine Corps Birthday to all those present and former Marines. And many thanks for all your service and protection. Because of you, life is good...