Sunday, April 11, 2010

Missin' my babies

I have been so busy with work and life that there is no time left to blog. I have missed blogging and setting memories to ether. One of the good things I have been doing is quilting and making some sweet little things for my grandchildren. This Granna makes sewn gifts for them to reach out and touch them when I can't be there. My most recent gifts are called placemats 101. They are placemats in kid prints - think snakes and flowers in bright colors. Appliqued on each placemat is a plate with a cup and knife, fork and spoon. The notion is they can help set the table. A very important job to help the family when you are a little guy or gal.

I now know how lucky I was to live so close to my grandparents that we saw them regularly and shared their lives and happy times. When I plant seeds to start veggies for the garden I think of my Oechsler and Henry grandparents and their gardens. Patty pan squash is not merely squash but a trip to a Toledo farmstand to see the vegetables in bulk that made it to the table. I spied the little scalloped squash and grandpa bought some for our dinner. I will never forget eating the vegetables steamed with a little butter and seasoning.

I will send some seeds to my babies so they can plant some of Granna's plants and we can share the growing experience. I am excited to have a great home vegetable garden to amaze my grands. I have my grandma's garden basket and we use that to "pwuck" vegetables together. Pwuck is three year old talk for pluck. In addition to regular crops we are planting scarlet runner beans and golden pea pods. Grandma Lee received a pyramid trellis for Christmas so the plants will grow up the trellis and their veggies will be easy for the little people to reach. The peas have bright yellow pods. The beans have scarlet flowers and deep purple bean pods. The beans inside the pods are black and red and could easily be Jack and the beanstalk beans. That should be fun. I'll also attempt a five hundred pound pumpkin. I know it won't be five hundred pounds by August but it should be on it's way.

I'm also trying to create a teepee out of some long wood tied together and a canvas tarp. I am hoping we can paint symbols of fun and love on it and spend the night in the teepee. Uncle John has agreed to sleepout with us so it will be an amazing night of fun. WooHoo!! Maybe even Doris will decide decide to keep company with us. Every indian needs a faithful animal. We'll pretend she is a tame wolf that looks out for us. In most cases it may be Dude who loves new people and will do anything for attention. We probably won't last all night but it will be fun and we can cook breakfast on the grill.

Granna's have to plan the magic ahead of time!

Granna also made a Rick Bayless salad to share at a friendly dinner with some great people last night. My recipe is a simple one for a great spicy dressing. I made it to dress spring greens topped with strips of roasted poblanos and red pepper. Two large poblanos to one red pepper. I used six total for eight people and had a little left over. I sprinkled the salad with thin slices of red onion - about one-fourth of an onion and three tablespoons of toasted sunflower seeds. for eight people.

The dressing is based on a bottle of ranch dressing but if I had time I would have made a homemade ranch dressing.
I added 1 chopped jalapeno - chopped very fine.
1 tablespoon of lime zest and the juice of a fat half-lime
1 avocado pureed

Stir together and serve.

It's a great dressing and really different.

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