Sunday, January 30, 2011

Happy Birthday, Ruthie

I accidently deleted this picture, so I'm adding it here. Hubby has promised to install Foxfire so I can once again "click and drag" my pictures. It sure has messed up more than one blog post for me!
This past Wednesday was Ruthie's 11th birthday. We gave her these three western dolls...a wonderful thrift shop find for $5 apiece. She loves them. Since Wednesday was busy, we decided to have her birthday dinner on Friday night when everyone would be home.

Mike took Lizzie to guitar lessons at 5:30 as it was snowing heavily, but after watching cars slip and slide all over the road, he made the smart decision to return home. I spent the afternoon cleaning out my pantry, including my box of spice mixes. I decided to try the Chicken Tikka Masala and McCormick's beef and broccoli sitfry mix (discontinued). I know it's a weird mixture but I wanted to use them up since I've had them for awhile.

We loved the chicken masala. Yes, it looks oily...and I had already used only half of the oil called for in the recipe. I will use only a fourth next time. This mix is from the same company that makes the delicious tandori chicken mix that I've tried. We definitely want to have this again.

This is the beef and broccoli. The only complaint from this recipe was that everyone wished there had been twice as much broccoli and less meat. I knew it wasn't gonna be enough broccoli...but that was the last of what I had. I served both dishes along with a lot of brown rice.
I know I mention what we eat often, but one of the most common questions I get asked is, What in the world do you all eat?! We feel blessed that we found out about our dairy and egg allergies gradually. It would've been hard to take those ingredients out cold turkey. But now that we are dairy and eggfree, I feel we are forced to eat much healthier. And it's become easy for us.

Maggie made these eggfree and dairyfree brownies for us this week. These are by far the most delicious brownies I have eaten. Maggie drew her inspiration from a recipe in Family Circle but she has changed so much of it that it really is her own version.

Maggie's Best Ever Dairyfree and Eggfree Brownies

2/3 cup cocoa
1/3 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
3 tbsp ground flax seed
1/8 tsp salt
1/3 cup oil
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
4 eggs worth of egg replacer**
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts (opt)

Heat oven to 350. Line an 8x8 dish with foil and spray with nonstick PAM.

In bowl, mix cocoa, flour, baking powder, salt, and flaxseed.

In large bowl, whisk together oil, sugars, egg replacer (and the water called for in the egg replacer), and vanilla. Stir in dry ingredient mixture. Spread batter evenly into prepared pan.

Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. Remove and cool completely. To slice, spray knife with cooking spray and cut into 25 squares. Re-spray knife as needed.

**We use many different ideas for replacing eggs. It all depends on the recipe. For this recipe, Maggie used this egg replacer from Ener-G, available at our local health food store.

FYI ~ The flaxseed acts as a glue to hold everything together so that this is not a crumbly brownie. We like that.
There's something wonderful about snowy, icy weather that gets us to enjoy putting puzzles together. We did two this week.

Anna bought a notebook so she could try her hand at making notebook covers. Beautiful!

Anna took a break from quilting a friend's wedding present to sew up this cute baby quilt. I feel like I'm living a "Quilt A Day" life! Love it!

Sarah has been busy crocheting the World's Ugliest Sweater...according to her. She is making this for baby Khy...whom you met last month. Evidently the yarn advertises that no matter what your stitches are, you will only end up with the design that you see on the two front sides. But look at the back design! Only Sarah could do that! She is disappointed...but still laughing.

Speaking of Sarah and laughing...this morning she went to the health food store for me. She took a back road (Macintosh for you locals) and was forced to a stop because two bucks were locked head to head in the middle of the road! Is this Alaska or what?! On either side of the road was a herd of does. Finally, a big pickup truck came along and honked them away so Sarah could continue on her way. What an event! Wish I'd been there.

Here's Ruthie's birthday dinner. She asked for pot roast...which I thought I had in the freezer...but it was gone when I went to defrost it. We ended up with roast chicken.

Ruthie and Maggie spent most of Friday in the kitchen baking together. It is so much fun as a Momma to see the closeness of my children. Anyhow, Ruthie made a cupcake cake using a pan that Grandma L gave us. It turned out beautifully! I'm not sure if they used a new recipe or not, but the vanilla/chocolate marbling was delicious. (This is where I accidently deleted the picture of Ruthie blowing out her candles. I added it to the top of this post.)
The next morning, my five daughters and their Daddy got up bright and early to go to the Father Daughter Breakfast at church. Ruthie had had a rough night and stayed up until 4:30 am. Our home has gotten too dusty and she was reacting. No fun. It is now vacuumed and dusted...but too late for her. She is really hurting today.
My daughters loved the breakfast. They said everything was just perfect. I'm not surprised. Our church has a wonderful ladies' fellowship and I've always been amazed at everything they do. This breakfast was a real blessing. They ended up with 80+ folks!
Mike had asked two other girls (Hannah and Brittany) if they'd like to be adopted for the day. They never said he was pleasantly surprised when they showed up to become family for the day! They even gave Mike the sweetest Thank You note. My hubby already considers himself the luckiest man alive to have not only one helpmeet...but five helpmeeters -in-training living with him.
The tables were beautiful.
Anna and Mike were part of the game that is based on the old Newlywed Game. They lost big time!
Here's Anna and Ruthie playing another game. There were four games total.
Here's the donut game. This is Pastor who adopted three daughters whose parents were at a Bible Study.
Mike didn't mind eating so many donuts.
Now it's the daughters' turn. Afterwards they had a devotional. What a wonderful memory.
We finished the two puzzles.
Here's the second one. Each puzzle has 750 pieces. If any local friends would like to have one or both, let me know and I will get it to you. Otherwise it's going back to the thrift shop. I am so glad our favorite thrift shop (Hooks and Hangers) is selling puzzles again for 25 cents each.

So this Sunday morning has me home with Maggie and Ruthie. Maggie accidently ate some dairy out in town this week, so she is all congested. Sarah is at the health food store buying mullein and then to Walmart to buy sudafed. I try to keep these things on hand but somehow I got caught emptyhanded. We make it a rule not to shop on Sunday, but Ruthie is hurting badly and the mullein works best.

I am going to fix lunch and then take a nap. I really feel my age when Ruthie has these all-nighters that keep me awake. I miss not being able to stay up all night without feeling it!

Enjoy your Sunday. Many blessings ~ Kathie

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Happy birthday to Ruthie. Hope she is feeling better.
All those delicious-looking food pictures are making me hungry!