Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Birthdays, baking, and ready for spring

Happy Birthday Granddad

It is another "tucked in" day here as the outside world is cold and wet by any standard but especially for a later-in-April day. I've been taking advantage of the cold chill by continuing our cold weather favorites for dinner. Christopher called to let me know he'd actually be home for a couple of hours yesterday which was another way of saying... feed me.

I had some Laura's Beef in the freezer (love it but I can only afford it on sale) so I quickly defrosted the beef and assembled the ingredients for Holiday Spaghetti. It is a casserole recipe my mother-in-law found in a cookbook we gave her as a gift when Stephanie was little. That's how long it has been a family favorite. Yesterday I made it with whole grain spaghetti and we all had seconds. It's suppose to feed a family of six... yeah, right.

While it was in the oven, I made a quick trip to the grocery store. Working with one car makes it necessary to take advantage of any opportunity the car is available. We must communicate appointments, extra classes, Christopher's work hours, etc. My mother-in-law never learned to drive so she depended on a very deep pantry and an extra refrigerator-freezer in the basement. I understand completely. :)

This is a birthday month for our family. My son-in-law recently celebrated a birthday. He is now... older. Baby Matthew turned two so I guess that means I can't call him Baby Matthew. Hubby's birthday is today. I don't know how he is getting so old when I've stayed thirty-nine all these years. :)

The above picture is Granddad fixing the fence in the back forty last week. Okay, so we don't have forty acres, we have slightly less than one but it feels like a lot when keeping up the maintenance. Christopher and I were quite impressed that he was able to make the fence look as good as new. It blew down in a winter storm and split off right at ground level.

The rest of the day is to be spent doing laundry, working on a couple organizing projects, and baking... an oatmeal cake for hubby's birthday and a Kentucky Derby Pie to give my brother-in-law tomorrow (per his request). If you haven't eaten one of these before, it's like a giant chocolate chip cookie pie, so easy to make and very rich.

The original recipe has a shot of Kentucky bourbon in it (which I have never included, not having it on hand). I'll probably give hubby's brother a few pieces of the oatmeal cake, too. It will bring back memories of his mother's cooking and baking. Both recipes keep well and since he's travelling, that will be necessary.

Isn't it wonderful how just the aroma of certain foods bring back memories of loved ones? I think of my mom whenever I make fried chicken (after all, she was from Kentucky!) or make her vegetable beef soup.

Now... there is lots to do today. Tempus is definitely fugiting.


Anonymous said...

The weather here yesterday was in the high 90s and so I was so glad that I had made many of our favorite cold weather menues the last two weeks before it got this hot. We enjoyed the cooler weather for every minute it was here! Your fence sure looks good. It is hard to believe it had been damaged earlier! It is wonderful to hear Christopher got to enjoy dinner with you. I sure love it when our children come and we can sit down like old times and be together again. Times like these make wonderful memories for all of us. Jody

Tracy said...

Happy birthday to all!!

scrappy quilter said...

The weather here has warmed up to +20C, however on Friday they are saying snow. Happy Birthday to your hubby, hope he has a wonderful day. Hugs.

the pleasures of homemaking said...

Happy Birthday to your husband! Your fence looks like new - he did a very good job! The recipe sounds good!


mom2six said...

Birthday blessings for your husband!

Vee said...

Nice photos of your handy hubby! Isn't it great to have one who is able to do all those fix-its?

Yes, I always remember events by the food we ate. I thought that I was strange!

nanatrish said...

I wrote about smells on my post today too. Happy Birthday to your honey. My mother would make vegetable soup in the winter and when I would walk home from school at lunch it would smell like heaven when I walked in the door. Thanks for reminding me of that memory. Sounds like Christopher is doing better. Praise the Lord!

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday to hubby! Sorry I haven't commented in awhile. Your "back forty" looks very lovely. I wish I had a house in the woods. I love trees!
Happy Spring!!
Joanna :)

DebD said...

Happy belated b-day to your wonderful husband. I'll have to go look at your spaghetti recipe, it sound rather popular.

Anonymous said...

I love the expression of a "tucked in day". I've never heard that used before, but it's a perfect way of describing such days.

I think that spring is a lovely time of year for birthdays. Best wishes to your family members who are celebrating.

I now find myself thinking about what I will cook when my son will be home from the university. He sometimes has requests, and it makes me happy to make them for him, as I know, such things are memories in the making. I always think of my grandmother's pineapple upside down cake, and the smell of coffee brewing makes me think of her kitchen of a morning. The coffee pot was always on, and she believed in big breakfasts, and always had extra, just in case her sons dropped by of a morning. They both worked nights for many many years, and would stop by and see their mom before heading home to their individual families.

Thank you for your kind birthday thoughts, and other comments. I appreciate them, very much.


Heather L. said...

Happy Birthday to your husband! It is always fun to see pictures of the people we hear about so often. :)