Christmas Dinner

Phillip and I spent all of Christmas day cooking food, mixing drinks and watching movies. Then around 6:30 we headed over to the Saunders for Christmas dinner... we brought the appetizer and dessert and here is what we(I) made!

Tomato Bruschetta (recipe from The Old Post Office) (we cut this recipe by about 3/4ths)

-about 20 Tomatoes (4lbs) diced and drained
-1/3 cup minced garlic
-12 oz diced red onion (about 1 1/2 large onions) diced very small
-1 1/2 cups basil leaves, chopped
-1/2 cup chopped parsley
-1 tsp salt
-1 tsp pepper
-1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
-1/4 cup red wine vinegar
-1/4 cup olive oil

combine ingredients and serve with a sliced baguette or serve on crostini and top with grated Parmesan cheese and drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

Yum Yum! This recipe is very light and refreshing - and not to filling!

For dessert I made a recipe that the Co-op is considering making. It was very fast and easy to make, and oh so tasty!

Chocolate Fruit Purses - Preheat oven to 400

-1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries (or any other berry/ fruit that goes well with chocolate)
-2 Tblsp sugar
-1Tblsp cornstarch
-1/2 cup semi-sweet choc. chips
-1 sheet puff pastry, defrosted

Combine fruit, sugar and cornstarch in saucepan. Cook on low heat, stirring often - until it thickens (5 min). Remove from heat and stir in chocolate chips.

On a lightly floured surface, unfold the puff pastry. Stretch lightly (or roll with a rolling pin) to form a larger square. Cut into quarters to form four squares. Mound 1/4 of filling in the center of each square. Lift the four corners up and over filling and twist together to form a small topknot. Pinch each side seam to seal pastries.

(I actually turned this into a more personal pastry by cutting each sheet of puff pastry into nine smaller squares and putting a spoonful of the filling in each one. If you go with this method you can actually begin before the pastry is totally thawed out, although it is very helpful to roll the pastry out so you have more dough to work with.)

Place on a baking sheet and bake until puffed and golden - about 20 min.


Hard days.

I've discovered that the toughest part of this whole "moving forward" bit is the part about not being able to forget the past. I'm not sure what my problem is... maybe it's the weather... maybe it's the fact that I haven't seen him in a week... whatever it is - the last couple of days have been really hard. I just want to curl up into a ball on my bed and wait until it's all past. I get up in the morning and by the time I make it into the bathroom I'm thinking about him. I spend my walk to work praying that I will think about something else for the day and about every five or ten minutes during the day I berate myself for not being able to keep my mind off of how much I miss him or what the holidays are going to be like without him or any number of silly thoughts that I really should be able to get beyond. I sit and stare into the distance on my breaks and I cry myself to sleep at night when the missing gets to be to much. Not every day is like this - this seems to be a bad spell of some kind. I rejoice when I reach the end of my day and realize that I haven't spent more than a few moments thinking about him. God is good and continues to give me a peace about my decision. My friends and parents are blessings who tell me that they are proud of me for acting maturely and using my head when my heart is breaking. Ayla is a constant blessing who more often than not lets me break down crying on her shoulder when the going gets to be to much. None of this make it any easier. And I imagine that it really wont get easier until we are out of Moscow and I meet someone else... of course the idea of someone else hurts almost as much as the idea of him with someone else...
God, give me strength.


Moving Forward

So it's time to move on with my life... most literally. Ayla and I need to get out of Moscow. Forget some things. Meet new people. Find a change of scenery. Figure out what we're doing. Dig in the dirt. You get the idea.
We both want to live slightly out of town, or at the very least in a place with a large yard. I want to try having a mini "farm". You know - a garden, chickens, fruit trees... Ayla is a great roommate and told me that was fine as long as she doesn't have to do anything with the chickens! We have to live someplace big enough that Ayla can find a busy spa, or a Clinique counter at some Macy's. And I want a bread bakery... I want to use my newly found skills with dough.

There's this person that keeps popping into my head and I need to go someplace where everything that I do doesn't remind me of him.

My mom has inspired me to move toward the west side of Washington State. Incidentally that is also closer to her... She has been feeding me information about something called - Respit Care, for foster kids/parents. It sounds like a great way to make some extra money, minister to families, work with kids, and join my family in their newest adoption plan.
Another reason that moving over there would be a good idea is just the fact that we could be close to the ocean. I mean - if we wanted to we could have a little boat and go crabbing... we could dig for clams year round... we could harvest mussels... we could smell that salty fresh air whenever we wanted to... talk about awesome!

There's a lot that has to happen before we can move and that means it'll probably be sometime in the spring. I'm not sure if that's soon enough for us - we may be slightly kookoo by then, but that'll give us time to plan and such. It will also give me time to enjoy Carrie and Eddie's baby, as well as a short time to enjoy Jon and Lindsey's baby! (By the way - Carrie is due next week and Jon and Lindsey are finding out what they're having next week! Exciting Exciting!)

Changes are coming and we are all moving forward with our lives...