Monday, April 13, 2009

'Tis Done. It's Sprung.

Well, you've waited longer than a day, haven't you? Sorry. Entering into a relationship with me (even as a blog follower) is stepping down the occasional path to disappointment. I'm a big dreamer and a small doer. A big picture girl who gets lost in the details. A planner, not an executor. A....well, now I'm bored again. A girl with a short attention span - that's what I am. Oh, and the big mind-blowing post? We'll see where this leads. I have no plan.

Anyway - Happy Easter, Happy Pesach, Happy Renewal!

We have had such a dry winter - everything was so brown and crunchy. But we received a wee tad of rain and things have greened up a bit. Not a ton. But enough to lift my spirits. And although I am definitely an autumn person - spring is way cool and I am enjoying it. Our garden is underway - not fully sown but we are working on it. The corn has come up.

And here, on my patio, are my sprouting tomatoes and eggplant.

I was up early this morning, and I wasn't the only one puttering around

Being productive...

Or just nosy....

Anyway, we had a busy and joyful weekend. It was also exhausting. And it started on Thursday with my dad's 80th birthday. We had friends and family over for a fiesta dinner. Jeff made his world-famous (ok - maybe not WORLD famous) Cuban Enchiladas Mole. This is not a Cuban recipe. And my husband is not a Cuban man. But he is a meticulous man. The kind of man who takes 20 minutes to change a diaper but dang it - that diaper is snug and perfect when he is done - truly engineered to get the job done. His enchiladas are hand-rolled, one at a time, and each one has the exact same amount of cheese and mole sauce inside. Each one is rolled to the exact same specifications with the exact same outcome of perfectly symmetrical dimensions. It is painstaking. He made 3 pans, and at approximately 30 minutes a pan, we're talking an hour and a half of rolling. I could roll 3 pans in 25 minutes - but they would not be perfect in any sense of the word. I don't have the luxury of perfection - as someone is always wanting me to hurry up and move on to the next demand/request. So I have turned into a slap-happy task performer. I am fine with that. See how I manage to turn every discussion back towards myself? Hmmm....I am currently exploring that. My egocentric tendencies....

Back to Cuba. So I couldn't duplicate his mole sauce if my life depended on it. It is a combination of what he remembers of his own mom's enchilada sauce and his own unique twist on things. Mole sauce has chocolate in it. It isn't sweet - but you can taste it. Yum. A rich, dark sauce. My contribution was my dad's favorite salad - black bean/corn/pigeon peas/cilantro/onion and balsamic vinegar. I also made guacamole which I served on (forgive me) shredded iceberg lettuce. I put the guacamole in the center of a bed of lettuce, put a ring of chopped tomatoes around it, then a ring of shredded cheddar, and then sprinkle the whole thing with crumbled goat cheese. Nice presentation, if I do say so, myself. And I do.

Jeff also made Mexican rice and I made homemade carrot cake for desert. My sister gave my dad Pink Martini concert tickets and he is thrilled. His ring tone is Hey Eugene. My dad's name is Eugene. How fortuitous.
Saturday morning began bright and early (at 5:30 to be specific) as Ellie's and Joel's STAND chapter was holding a rummage sale with the proceeds benefiting the Genocide Intervention Network. Somehow, when that was over, all of the STAND kids ended up back at my house playing video games. Nice group of kids. Then we headed over to my dad's for a Seder meal. I know. Wrong night. But we do it when we can. And we could on Saturday. It was a perfect end to the day. The Haggadah we use has many beautiful and relevant passages to feeling the misery and pain of sharing acting to end it was moving and as I read my part I couldn't help but feel my heart swell at what my teens had spent the morning doing. Trying to end a genocide. And for me, this sort of action supersedes any religious act.
So - how about some more food descriptions? If the relatives don't give you a heart attack during the holidays - the food will! God. But. We. Had. Great. Food.

Here is the kugel I make. It was really really good. It is resting on my little Blue Nordic dessert plate. My fave.
We also had prime rib roast (which one of my vegetarians succumbed to), veggies, matzo ball soup, and chopped chicken livers, WHICH, by the way, you should not knock until you've tried. We like them mixed with onions and hard boiled eggs and spread (still warm) on matzo. Delicious. Aforementioned vegetarian caved to this, too. Lots of wine (in fact, I awoke with a minor headache the next morning) and bickering. It was awesome. Elijah, as usual, snuck in while nobody was looking, drank some wine, and snuck back out. What, I ask you, is up with that? What is it with the religious figures and their cloak and dagger tactics?

And speaking of religious figures, the next day was Easter. For someone who doesn't practice a religion, I am ridiculously religiously bi-polar (in a secular sort of way - although it is often spiritual). So LATE LATE LATE Friday night - while buzzing with Passover wine - I did what any good Jewish girl would do. I began stuffing Easter Eggs. And gettin' the ham ready. We are not doing ham next year, by the way. Just not enough carnivores left in the house. Jules has also joined the veggie ranks.

Last week, Camille wrote a letter under duress. It went something like this: Dear Easter Bunny. Don't leave so much candy. Love (sniff sniff) Camille. Yes! I did it! We had VERY LITTLE CANDY this Easter. The Bun-Man left cascarones (confetti-filled eggs) and eggs stuff with lame items and just a few pieces of candy. Of course, they got chocolate bunnies - but they got the little ones. I am making progress in this area. Another big huge family meal followed. Then we headed across the road to Aunt Maxine's farm for more food and family. It was a truly wonderful, and yes, very holy, week. But aren't they all? Or at least, shouldn't they be?

OK - so, nothing mind blowing in this post, either. I told you. With me, you will suffer the occasional bout of disappointment. I was going to post about String Theory. Really! I am not kidding! If you don't know what String Theory is - tune in next time. I'm going to discuss the mysteries of the universe. Heck - maybe I will even SOLVE they mysteries of the universe! Yes! That is it! On the next post - I, Sardine Mama, will solve the mysteries of the universe and explain String Theory. So, yeah. You will not want to miss that. Oh, and you might not want to miss my post at my other blog, Social Skills...Who Needs 'Em?

This is Sardine Mama signing off more formally as The Blessed (but not virginal) Mother of Five Fishies


  1. PINK MARTINI TICKETS!!!! I didn't even know they were cumming, that is SO awesome!

    man, you guys keep busy. Lovely post as always Mrs. Carol. I think you solve all the problems of the universe at least once a week.

  2. Hey..we had the (in the words of my Aunt Barbara? "loosey goosey Passover" going..even if we did do it on Wednesday. Nice to know we're not the only family going from Elijah and the case of the mysterious wine disappearance and matza stuffing easter eggs and cooking ham...isn't it fun though?