03 May 2013

Seven Quick Takes Friday, Vol. 29

Once upon a time, when I was young and foolish and barely into elementary school, it snowed on my birthday. And I was delighted. Here, truly, was proof that God loved me: He gave me snow for my birthday. For years after I prayed for snow on my birthday, but God, Whose foolishness surpasses human wisdom, never saw fit to grant it to me... until today. Now that I am old and wise enough to fully grasp the disgustingness of snow in May, I have been blessed with fully two feet of it still in the yard and more falling. There's a lesson in this somewhere. I'm just hoping that Little Bear never prays for snow on his birthday... that would be a truly miserable July.

I just noticed that both of the past two weeks' Takes were labeled Vol. 27. I think that's happened a few times in the past, too. Take your pick: I'm getting old, I have a whiny baby who destroys my brain cells, I can't count, all of the above.

My husband has been very kind about not paying me back today for all of the age-related jokes I made on his birthday... Thank you, Matt! For his part, Little Bear has made sure to stay awake all day long to give me the pleasure of his constant company; we wouldn't want Mama to get lonely on her birthday, now would we?

Most years, I've celebrated my birthday with picnics and lemonade and hikes through our local migratory bird refuge. While the weather didn't allow that today, my mom arranged a car-picnic after mass: we parked at the refuge and watched the birds from the warmth of the car for a half hour while enjoying veggie pinwheels and apples. We spotted Canada geese, sandhill cranes, swans, and several kinds of ducks.

Does anyone have suggestions on making a May crown for a statue of Our Lady? I didn't manage to last year, and this year real flowers are obviously not an option... Do they make wire-stemmed artificial flowers that could be woven together? Does anywhere sell artificial flowers that look like real flowers and not psycho daisies dipped in kool-ade?

What is it with men and doilies? Matt and many of his friends from school had an unfathomable prejudice against them...
R: I'd really like to find a doily to put under the state of Our Lady, to protect the bookshelf from getting scratched.
M: A doily? Really?
R: It serves the same function as the cloth runners on the dresser, and you don't see anything wrong with those...
M: Right...
R: A doily is just prettier!
M: Exactly!

On Wednesday, I overcame my aversion to touching chicken enough to successfully make chicken stock for the first time. It seemed a little thin, so maybe someone can tell me what I did wrong? I had the bone/rib pieces from two chicken breasts that the meat had been cut off of, and put them in a smallish (maybe 2.5 or 3 quart?) pot, covered them with water, and let it simmer for five hours. I was quite disappointed in my cookbooks... Surely the classics--Good Housekeeping, Better Homes & Gardens, etc--should tell you how to make stock, right? Wrong. Not my editions, at least. The Good Housekeeping book even had the nerve to say that nowadays everyone just uses bouillon or boxed stock.

Have a lovely weekend, hopefully less snowy than ours, and don't forget to stop by ConversionDiary.com for more Quick Takes!


  1. Happy birthday!

    My husband is 5 months older than I am, and I tease him quite a bit. :) So far he hasn't repaid the favor.

  2. Rosalie! I have been horribly reminiscent in reading your blog! Which is a shame as it is the most refreshing thing to read on the internet these days. :) Anyway, we make our own chicken stock too. It's actually the joint bones (so leg bones) that make the best stock, not the breast bones/ribs, or even whole chicken. We'll freeze several leg bones at a time, and when we have enough to fill a largish pot (I'm horrible with measurements) we put them in water like you did. We usually get only legs from the store when we get chicken, so we accumulate leg bones pretty quickly. (By leg bones, I mean leg and thigh bones).