Monday, March 23, 2009

St. Paddy's Day Beer Feast -- posted by John

This St. Patrick's Day was my best St. Patrick's Day so far. We don't normally celebrate St. Patrick's Day because we are neither Irish nor Roman Catholic. If St. Patrick used the shamrock, a three-leafed clover, to teach the people of Ireland the truth of the trinity (that God is three in one) then, well, great! But we have no idea if St. Patrick was really born again or not.

Anyway, we had a feast. The first course was potato cheddar ale soup but it was made with Killian's Red because that is what we had. We also had Guinness in the refrigerator but that wouldn't taste good because Guinness has a smokey taste like it was kept in a burnt oak barrel. I'm not an expert on beer because I'm just a kid and I haven't tasted the world of beer, but I think I would like Guinness if I was a logger, or an adventurer on the high seas, but not in my potato cheddar soup.

The soup was magnifico, especially with the round loaf of Irish soda bread Sarah made from whole wheat. Mom let us each have a Dixie cup of Killian's Red and it was delicious! It felt soothing. I felt like a man in the middle ages tearing my bread and drinking my beer.

All that was in the late afternoon and then later Mom made a blender full of Bailey's Frozen Russian. It has Bailey's Irish Cream, vodka, chocolate liqueur, and vanilla ice cream. Ours were mostly ice cream but we could taste the flavors. That was the best drink I've ever had!

Finally, we had the main course of glazed corned beef, cabbage, and carrots. It was superb! The corned beef was tender and flavorful and the cabbage and carrots were cooked in the water with the spices.

I pinched some brothers and some brothers pinched me but I finally gave George one of my green shirts because I'm that kind of brother. Frankly, wearing green doesn't stop our older brothers from pinching us anyway. It's just gonna happen on March 17th.

We saw East of Eden, the James Dean one. We read the book awhile ago. Mom wants us to see the mini-series with Jane Seymour. Hopefully Ma will order it from Netflix because neither the libraries nor the video stores have that version here.

Monday, March 16, 2009

My Favorite Chicken -- posted by John

Yesterday morning we started a game of Scrabble and when we finished it at the end of the day, you'll never guess what happened! Since Mom was helping us, the joke became that Mom tied herself 205 to 205 representing me and George. Sarah came in at 187 and James had 186. We've never had scores so close before.

It was a rainy day yesterday and the game lightened our spirits. Also, Mom and Sarah made a delicious lentil stew with diced turnips, turnip greens, tomatoes, and onions. We topped it with fried onions and sour cream. We also had a slice of the new whole wheat bread recipe that Sarah soaks the wheat overnight. It is very healthy and delicious. This soup and bread is one of my favorite meals. It's very inexpensive but it has great flavor and it is filling. Esau sold his birthright over a stew like this, but I wouldn't go that far.

This morning when we went to do the farm chores Spencer found a kitten in the hay bin in the goat shed. He asked me to get it out since I could fit. I reached in and found a live kitten and a dead kitten.

Later, James had me crawl under the big hay bin in the sheep pen. I found two dead kittens. I had to crawl in the mud to get under there, and when I found the one that was soft and limp, I put my finger on it to check its pulse and I think I actually felt it die. I felt its heart beat a little and then stop. The other one was certainly dead because it was stiff as a pole.

We buried the dead ones and took the live one to the dry carport but the momma cat immediately came and took it back to the hay bin in the goat shed. James found another live kitten but it was smaller than the momma cat's baby. He gave it to the momma cat and she nursed it like it was her own. That's good because it is hard to keep baby kittens alive on formula. James roped off that section of the goat pen for a nursery so Uncle Bob and the goats can't get in there to trample them.

Imagine being that momma cat and all your babies die but one and then you have to adopt some poor abandoned stranger.

The Spartans were bad about abandoning their babies, too.

All this today reminds me of when a fox killed my favorite chicken. She was the best about not pecking me. She would hop out of the nesting box when I came in to collect eggs in the morning and she would let me pet her. I'll never forget how I felt that morning when I saw a trail of her grey feathers and she wasn't to be found in either the chicken coop or the chicken run. She would never have just left us, no way! That was a very emotional day for me.

I've been reading the chapter books from the series called The Boxcar Children. I'm reading about a book a day. They are very entertaining and I now feel like I know the characters. I've read six so far and I'm not tired of them yet. The Yellow House took longer than a day because it was thicker than the rest.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Overheard -- posted by Mom


Richard: "Everybody have their different thing they like. I relate to babies and pancakes. Georgi's favorite color is red and John's is green and mine is blue. I'm the youngest and Will is bigger. See? We got differences but we are still the same one family!"


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

I Pulled Out Georgi's Baby Tooth! -- posted by John

I haven't written lately because last week Ma went to the hospital. She had very bad chest pains and called Mom and the EMS at 1 AM. Mom stayed with her in the hospital for a couple of days and then at her house once they let Ma out of the hospital. Thankfully she didn't have another heart attack but she might have some kind of blockage for which they gave her pills. Since I'm not allowed to go online when my mother isn't home, it has been awhile since I wrote.

Sarah did a great job feeding us while Mom was away. She made chicken salad and turkey and she also made a new whole wheat bread recipe that is lighter than our usual recipe. It is more like sandwich bread. She also made sourdough bread which took a week or so on the counter before it was ready to bake. It is very healthy and made with spelt instead of wheat. At first I didn't like it because it tasted so different, but then she put raw honey on it and I loved it! Now that I'm used to it, I like it without the honey. Sometimes you have to get used to new flavors, especially when you expect it to taste a certain way. Sarah always makes good things and she makes our house smell so nice like a lovely home.

Another thing she made was Yorkshire pudding from the drippings of a roast. I was expecting it to be really bad like some kind of mush that an Oliver Twist type peasant would eat. I'd only barely even heard of it. I think Sharpe ate it during the Napoleonic War, but I'm not sure. Even though we thought it would be nasty, we loved it! Mom was sorry she missed it because she's never had it either.

We've had the windows up because it has gotten hotter and in the South it gets hot fairly quickly. We can hear the toads croaking on the pond and the crickets, birds, squirrels, and frogs. Even though the neighborhood has come alive, the sounds are sleepy and make you want to take a nap.

I pulled out one of George's baby teeth today. He told me I could play with his cap gun for 30 days if I pulled his tooth out. It wasn't easy because it was wedged in between two big teeth-- but I have my ways! I pushed it backwards waaaay back until I heard that crackling sound it makes. Then, I pulled it forward and yanked it downward. Out it popped! Georgi didn't know what had happened until he saw my grin and looked in my hand and then he started jumping up and down with excitement. Unfortunately, I think he's planning on getting rich this way.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Overheard -- posted by Mom


Richard: "I love drumsticks! If you don't have a fork?.... the drumstick do! You just pick it up on that bone that's sticking out. It's like a built-in handle. I just love dem drumsticks!"