Saturday, December 29, 2007
Friday, December 28, 2007
Location: Newark, Delaware
Event: Family Portrait
Who: Allen Kenneth Lee, Jr., Andrew Kerry Lee and Brian Keith Lee
I love this photo of Brian and his brothers. A few months ago, Brian wrote a bit of an essay and I’ve been trying to find the right time and place to post it.
It is often said that the sweetness of success may only, truly be appreciated once we’ve tasted the bitterness of failure – a taste, I can attest – is much like prunes doused in gasoline. A taste so foul that illness and nausea consume us until the medicine of time, the antidote of fortitude, can work its inevitable cure.
I have tasted both loss and failure in recent months. The tart aftertaste of which still lingers. Yet through it all, we have this strength that leads us forward. Often like plodding through mire, we trod on. Even with a life filled with many joys and triumphs, the wake we have left behind, surely does not steer us now.
This strength, which endures despite years of scabs and scars, is my family. The one impenetrable rock I have clung to with veracity, with a death-like grip. Yes, for all of its dysfunctions it remains the one thing that I rely on for comfort, for validation, and yes, even consternation from time to time.
It is not conflict free, far from it. But like a lioness preparing her young, our small conflicts gird us from the trials and tribulations that we encounter on a daily basis. With respect and humility, it nurtures me.
Even with the passage of many years, with a long life filled with many memories, we still laugh and cry over the same stories time and time again. Through all the years my family has become my foundation. It has become my lighthouse, my beacon on the outcrop of time.
Slowly, inevitably, the sour aftertaste subsides. The sweet, rich fullness of life returns and I am once again rescued from the rocks that lay in waiting. My family, as always, is there.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
On Christmas Day, my Mom mentioned that she wished she had my Grandma Virginia’s artichoke dip recipe – a favorite that she loved to make. I am not sure if this is her exact recipe, but it looks like a great New Year’s Eve appetizer.
"This dip is good hot, cold, or room temperature. Serve it with tortilla chips or pita wedges and be sure to get your taste, because it doesn't last long at a party!"
1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 (4 ounce) can diced green chiles
Sliced green onions - garnish
Chopped Tomatoes - garnish
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2. Combine the artichoke hearts, mayonnaise, cheese and green chilies. Mix well and pour into a 2 quart casserole dish.
3. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Garnish with chopped green onions and chopped tomato if desired.
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Santa brought Brian the DVD of the Planet Earth series, a book called F-5 about a breakout of tornados back in the mid-70's, a Lyle Lovett CD, a new lighthouse/seagull clock and a birdhouse made from a Delaware license plate.
We spent a few hours on the afternoon of Christmas Day at my Mom and Kenny's place in South Seattle and no sooner did we get in the door than the snow began to fall. Not much stuck....but it was pretty to watch and made Christmas "feel" like Christmas (the first white Christmas in the Pacific NW in over 75 years).
Thanks Santa Kenny and Santa Mom for the Mariner's gift cards, wine, silver earrings, gardening calendar, Cooks Illustrated subscription and amarylis. The mimosa's were wonderful (and we will never forget the dip).
Brian and I closed out our day with a quiet Christmas dinner - a small turkey breast, mashed potatoes, Italian green beans and some stuffing. Brian also made creme de'menthe parfaits for dessert!Christmas table - Christmas crackers from the Wooden Spoon in Edmonds
Sunday, December 23, 2007
A very enjoyable "new" holiday tradition!
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Friday, December 21, 2007
For the past 3 Christmas mornings, Brian has popped one of his Christmas Quiches into the oven. Served with some fruit and a champagne mimosa, this Christmas breakfast is sure to please everyone!
Enjoy some of these easy Quiches!
Easy Broccoli Quiche
"This easy vegetarian quiche is a snap to make but looks great on the table."
2 tablespoons butter
1 onion, minced
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 cups chopped fresh broccoli (frozen is the easiest)
1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
4 eggs, well beaten
1 1/2 cups milk
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon butter, melted
2. Over medium-low heat melt butter in a large saucepan. Add onions, garlic and broccoli. Cook slowly, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are soft. Spoon vegetables into crust and sprinkle with cheese.
3. Combine eggs and milk. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in melted butter. Pour egg mixture over vegetables and cheese.
The Yellow House
Waynesville, North Carolina
8 slices bacon, crisply cooked and crumbled
1 cup shredded Swiss cheese (4 ounces)
1 cup finely chopped onion
4 large eggs
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Location: “E” Street in Springfield, OR
Event: Christmas (why doesn’t my stocking have a name???)
Who: Stacy (age 2 ½) with dog, Anna and cat, Cinderella (we called her “cinner”)
Date: Early 1990’s
Location: “E” Street in Springfield, OR
Event: Look at all those presents! We were probably getting ready to go “visiting” on Christmas Eve
Who: Pop and Stacy
Thursday, December 20, 2007
What’s better than opening your presents while drinking a bottle of champagne?
Santa Sandra filled my stocking with all sorts of goodies….a very nice pashmina, Santa candy, these cool ear muffs that go around the back of your head, and a really cute Chef snowman from Williams and Sonoma.
Santa Stacy filled Sandra’s stocking with the new Carrie Underwood CD, candles, fake eyelashes and a silver candle holder that says “JOY”.
Let’s get onto the good stuff!
Wrapping paper was torn with a frenzied pace! Stacy got PJ’s from Old Navy, a cool wind-chime (which I hung immediately), Calvin Klein Euphoria perfume, silicone spatulas and a silicone steamer basket and a Pandora charm bracelet.
Sandra received an LL Bean monogrammed bag, a pedometer, sateen PJ’s from Lands End, two CD’s – Bon Jovi and smooth jazz and a pair of black slippers.
We had a great evening! How grateful are we…….VERY!
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Brian loves his shredder (it looks like it was the only thing he wanted for Christmas).
We had a wonderful roasted chicken dinner and a bit of Christmas cheer!
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
We drove Brian around Eugene and introduced him to a dear family friend, our Aunt Pat Dahl (not a blood relative, but almost as close). Aunt Pat was both my paternal (Marie) and maternal (Virginia) grandmother’s best friend – and is our last connection to their memories. It was nice seeing her again and also catching up with her daughter, Candy and son-in-law, John – who Brian found out began his radio career as Jivin' Johnny Etheridge in Lower (or is it Slower) Delaware (Milford, I believe). Small world!
For dinner my parents took us to Midtown Bistro & Bel Ami Lounge for dinner. Yummy! The rack of lamb was heavingly…Brian had a flank steak - marinated in merlot, Dad chose the duck breast and Rosemary’s tenderloin filet could have been eaten with a spoon. Excellent wine and service – a great meal.
I think the Tater Mits were a big hit!