Welcome to 2008! 

Today’s dinner will be the traditional pork, sauerkraut, and mashed potatoes.  You haven’t celebrated the New Year in my neck of the woods without eating pork – in any form – and sauerkraut.  Our region is heavily influenced by German tradition.  There’s also a New Year’s pretzel (think large, pretzel shaped, sweet yeast bread), but I’ve never made one of those. 

When I was in high school, age 15 or 16, I spent New Year’s with my father in Richmond, VA.  Y’all in the South apparently don’t know the pork thing.   You eat black-eyed peas.   (<—– OK, in all fairness, most of you probably think sauerkraut would be a terrible way to start a new year. razz

Do you have a special food tradition at New Year’s?

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All in all, a good week of faith and cheer. 

Sunday started rough with a visit to a funeral home on our way to my MIL’s to celebrate Christmas with DH’s family.  In the midst of all this joy, our friend was mourning the loss of her mother.  Dorothy was buried Christmas Eve.  Please pray for Mary Lou, Ralph, and their children; and especially Mary Lou’s father, George.

Christmas with the inlaws was pleasant.  Good company, good food, nice gifts. (I got a Baker’s Catalog gift card!  W00T! )  The kids (ours were the only ones there), of course, had loads of fun.  And we all enjoyed watching the Bengals beat the Browns, thereby handing the division to the Steelers.  (Especially good, as we lost today!)

Christmas Eve we spent at church.  Every year I start the evening thinking, “Man, there is so much I still have to do at home!” but end the evening in tears during the candlelighting and singing of Silent Night.  Jesus, Lord at Thy birth!  Our preacher preached a good one; and our Lord was glorified.  What a blessed way to celebrate Christmas!

Christmas morning started with homemade whole wheat cinnamon rolls in the oven.  This has become our family tradition.  This year I tried the Dark and Dangerous Cinnamon Rolls recipe from King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking .  I love that book! 

While the rolls were cooling, we gathered in the livingroom.  DS10 read the account of Jesus’ birth from Luke 2.  DD12 read the account of the visit of the magi from Matthew 2.  It is a good thing to recall and focus on why we celebrate. 

And then….the gifts!  I won’t list’em, but I was very happy that the kids were pleased. 

After gifts, we ate those cinnamon rolls.  OHMYGOODNESS.  Those were some seriously dark and dangerous rolls!  (Possibly too sweet.  I may adjust it next time.)  But they were awesomely delicous.

The kids played while I busied myself in the kitchen.  My brother and mother arrived around 3:30, and for the most part we had a very nice time.  Unfortunately, things ended abruptly after dinner when my mother decided, with attitude, that she wanted to leave, which meant my brother had to go, too.  She’s done that so many times that I just roll my eyes now, but this year my kids were upset that she and their uncle left so soon.  I need to talk to her about that…just don’t know how or when.

We pretty much spent the rest of the week relaxing.  Took the kids to Target and Barnes and Noble to spend gift cards.  I love my DS10’s book purchases: Books on Ancient Egypt, Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome, and Ripley’s Believe It or Not.  Can you tell he’s homeschooled? 

Took DD to see Enchanted yesterday.  Cute movie!  A little slow at times, but generally sweet.  She loved it. 

A good week.  I hope yours was blessed!

Today is the 12th anniversary of a most delightful occasion: my DD made her way into the world, and life has never been the same. icon_biggrin.gif   Today was fairly uneventful, as far as birthdays go.  We had a girls’ night out on Friday with her best friend and her mom (also a good friend of mine), at Olive Garden, followed by shopping at Barnes and Noble.  Give DD a book and she’s a happy girl; give her several, and she’s downright giddy.  So today we had our typical day.  Well, except that DD got the day off of school.  Happy Birthday, Magpie! icon_biggrin.gif

Her birthday dinner consisted of ham, angel hair pasta in herb sauce, green beans, and salad.  She chose apple pie instead of cake.  YUM! icon_biggrin.gif  So, this morning I baked pie.  (Are you there, Applie?Groucho )  Hubby and I were happy with this decision, but the boys were not.  They got leftover brownies that I made yesterday for DD to take to youth group.  Dark, dark chocolate brownies with 60% cocoa Ghirardelli chocolate chips.  Diet?  What diet? 

Ah yes.  Diet.  Given a strong family history of diabetes, and my own dx of pre-diabetes years ago, and having packed on the pounds in recent years, and feeling like crapola, I’ve put myself on an diabetic exchange diet.  Started last week.  Doing pretty well.  Feeling better.  Except that yesterday I made those brownies (hey, one brownie won’t kill me, and dark chocolate is good for you, right?), today I baked pie, and Wednesday I’ll be baking a sinfully delicious mocha double dark chocolate bundt cake, that my friends and family refer to as, “Ooooh, that cake.”  It was requested by a friend for his birthday.  Not a good week for a new way of eating!  But at least I’ll be good during the day.  Better than I was, so it’s still better overall.  Right?  Right.  (I’ll just keep telling myself that.)

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