Today (Monday) I had jury duty, but in a stroke of luck, all of us were dismissed at 11:15 a.m. without being called for any trials at all. I’m grateful because this week is busy enough as it is. My oldest has half days almost all week, due to parent-teacher conferences. My conference is tomorrow afternoon. My younger son had off today for a Holy Day of Obligation. Wednesday, my car has to have something installed. Thursday night is my younger son’s Christmas pageant. Friday, I have a doctor’s appointment. This will be a dangerous week for takeout.
Last week I did pretty well considering I was sick all week and so was my husband:
Monday: bacon and eggs
Tuesday: tortellini, chicken, and carrots in chicken broth. I don’t normally crave chicken soup when sick, but this time I did, and it was so good.
Wednesday: Felt the worst, so we ordered Thai/Chinese food, including won ton soup… more soup goodness.
Thursday: Chinese food leftovers.
Friday: Pulled pork sandwiches and mashed potatoes. I had cooked the pork shoulder the day before, but it wasn’t done quite in time for dinner. Very tasty, and I had plenty of both pork and potatoes to freeze for another time.
Tonight we had spaghetti and meatballs. In other food news, I visited the new food market in our downtown, the Local Market. It’s a nice space, with a large area of meats and prepared food in the center, groceries and produce along the sides, and a coffee bar with seating in the back. Basically, it’s a mini Whole Foods. I stopped in with the kids last Friday morning and bought apples and bananas, as well as a latte, but we had to continue on to Acme to get the other, conventional stuff I needed for the pulled pork dinner, including Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce and Coke.
You can read more about the market here.
Last night I ordered a handful of seed catalogs. I’m thinking of asking my husband to build those tall planters like my friends’ garden has, for the spring. Meanwhile the carrots are still alive in the container garden out back, although we’ve had frost and I didn’t cover them. They haven’t grown very big, but I suspect I planted them too close together. (The lettuce dropped dead with the first frost — there were a few plants left and I forgot to pick them before the frost.)
But pretty much most of what I’ve been up to is Christmas related. I’ve got my mom’s former artificial tree up in the living room, and the kids and their friends decorated it today. I’ve been casually grilling my oldest over what he really wants Santa to bring, most of all. Almost every front window has a candle in it — I just have to shimmy into the yucky unfinished front dormer on the third floor without kneeling on a nail or dried squirrel poop and get one in that window. Saturday afternoon, I wrapped a bunch of presents, and the kids and I trekked to the craft store for supplies for a homemade gift that I’m excited about, but can’t talk about yet. I’ve even been going to Mass — two weeks in a row, anyway.
My younger son has been my little elf — this year he is the one who is really into it. He loves decorating, helping me wrap presents, looking at lights and decorations when we’re driving, reading Christmas books. He is annoyed that he doesn’t have any Christmas pajamas or red or green pants. I may have created a monster, but it’s fun. (Except for the part where I had to clean up two broken snowglobes in two hours yesterday, because he insists on carrying decorations from room to room.)
During jury duty, when I wasn’t chatting with the jury duty buddy I met on the train (hi Fran!), I doodled a menu for Christmas Eve. I’m a little tired of the foods we usually have (like, for the past 20 years, at least), but not sure what I would replace it with. I do know that I want to make this pumpkin gingerbread trifle. That will happen.