To live content with small means; to seek elegance rather than luxury, and refinement rather than fashion; to be worthy, not respectable, and wealthy, not, rich; to listen to stars and birds, babes and sages, with open heart; to study hard; to think quietly, act frankly, talk gently, await occasions, hurry never; in a word, to let the spiritual, unbidden and unconscious, grow up through the common--this is my symphony.
~William Henry Channing

Thursday, January 20, 2011

More Birthday Loot

As mentioned yesterday, my birthday was quite wonderful. Rob and the kids surprised me with not one, but three presents late in the afternoon. A vacuum, which I know some women would be horrified to receive as a birthday present. But if they had been sweeping the whole house, carpeted rooms included, ever since their son tried to see what would happen if he put a pencil up the hose and broke their old vacuum they'd be singing a different tune. Trust me I wrote the song. The vacuum is wonderful and I vacuumed my bedroom at 9:30 last night just so I could use it. (Side bed with it's beautiful new covers was made by 6:15am just because it looks so pretty I couldn't wait to do it...I'm such a goof :-)
I am also the happy owner of two baking pans that let you make individual bars or petits fours. Did you know that petit fours is French for 'small ovens'? It was a way for bakers in the 18th century to use leftovers while the expensive coal powered ovens cooled down. Pretty interesting, huh?
Ya know what else is interesting?
Dutch ovens.
Did you know that in colonial America the cast iron pots were so valuable as to be bequeathed in wills? We were also the ones to add legs to the original design to keep the pot out of the fire's coal. And it's the official state cooking pot of Utah. Does Florida even have an official state cooking pot?
Yes, my most wonderful husband blessed me with this gorgeous beauty...

Isn't she pretty? I say she's the slicked up city cousin to my sweet good ol' country cast iron skillet that I got for Christmas. I couldn't  wait to use her so after I seasoned her (just the rim because she has an enamel finish on the inside) I made us a delicious pot of white chicken chili for dinner tonight. And I have all the ingredients for a super yummy beef stew for this weekend. I can almost smell it simmering on the stove!
I did tell Rob that now I am feeling a certain amount of pressure (albeit a happy pressure) to actually produce something equal in taste and goodness to the new additions to my kitchen gear. Feel free to share any recipes suitable for cast iron cooking!
I do have one more picture to share with you but it's really at odds with the homey loveliness of this post. However, it is a glimpse into my warm and wonderful abode and my precious family. Remember the whole whoopie cushion thing from Christmas? We've literally had to put the thing away, out of Sam's reach because he is so amused by it. To the point that you want to smack him on the head amused by it. To the point that he will suddenly burst into laughter because he is imaging a whoopi cushion incident. (For the record, Rob has assured me that the fascination with bodily functions as a source of humor is quite normal and, well, male. It must be true because the use of a whoopi cushion can be traced all the way back to circa 222 AD by a Roman emperor. Go figure.)
We're all pretty good about playing along when Samuel deems it our turn for the prank. Tonight, he was after Sarah. She gave him the reaction he was hoping for.

He is so funny!
The whoopi cushion not so much :-)


BeckyJ said...

I am so excited for you about the dutch oven! It is my most used pot in my kitchen. I love that you can get something started in it on the stovetop and then finish in the oven. And with the lid on it stays hot for a long time. (I get worked up about good kitchen tools. Sorry.)

The look on Sam's face is priceless!

Rob H said...

So, let me get this straight. This post is about
birthday loot.
and a photo shoot
of an artificial poot?

Marty said...

Yes, Dr. Suess, it is. Because I'm just keeping it real.

lovely loser said...

I was already laughing from the whoopi cushion prank, then Pastor's Rob's comment really got me laughing. Oh how I miss you guys!