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Today in My History

2000:  The Care and Feeding of Steve
2001:  Such a Beautiful Day
2002:  How Many Activity Points Do I Get for Coughing
2003:  Thar She Blows!
2004Having Written

2005:  When In Doubt, Cry Terror

2006: Schmoozing
2007: Family Values
2008: Pinata Day
2009:  Counting Down the Days
2010: The Unexpected Things
2011: Sunday Stealingl

Bitter Hack
Updated: 10/08
"The Miracle Worker"

Books Read in 2012
 Updated: 10/08
"Let's Pretend This Never Happened"

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mail to Walt


10 October 2012

How odd...an entry written on the actual date it is posted!  I am exhausted, having driven just short of the distance to Santa Barbara today, without leaving northern California.  But that story will be for tomorrow's entry.  This one is about Kathy 's last cousin's day.

AshesBoob.jpg (65512 bytes)We had not had a Cousins Day since May and boy were we all needing one!  Also, the weather was not good in May and so while we had planned to sprinkle Kathy's ashes then, we decided to wait until later...we had no idea how much later it would actually be. (Actually Kathy's husband and kids had scattered half of her ashes; we had the other half.)

After our last get together, Peach was called to service helping her sister, Mandy, following a hip replacement surgery and then when Mandy was OK to be on her own, Peach's husband Bob went in for a knee replacement.  The knee replacement has turned out to be significantly more complicated than intended and Peach has been doing the "in sickness" part of her vows 24/7 for the past four months.

They finally decided that Bob was OK to get along without her for a day or so and he was even able to drive her to my house, though I noted that he did not get out of the car, as he usually did.  He looked like he has seen better days.

Peach and I drove to my mother's.  I think we talked nonstop all the way there, and probably for the better part of two days.  We had missed our conversations!

We never quite know what to expect with my mother, how bad her memory is going to be and whether or not she'll be up for a card game or 10.  She had lunch ready for us and we enjoyed our lunch and then she invited us to move to the "soft seats" to talk.  She went into her bedroom for a minute and Peach and I decided she wasn't up for cards, but as she came back in she said "Hey--aren't we going to play cards?"   So we sat down and she said that she wasn't sure she remembered how to play.   Sometimes she does, sometimes she doesn't.  This time I think she was conning us.  At our last game, we figured out I had won 3 games, Peach had won 2 games and my mother had also won 3 games.  Other than never remembering which card was wild in each hand (which we all have problems with), she played as well as she ever has, which was nice.

As usual, we played, we talked, we laughed.  When it was time to make cocktails, Peach brought out her $18 bottle of--I kid you not--cucumber flavored vodka.

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(It was organic too).  She mixed it with ginger beer and soda water. and served it with cucumber slices and lime.  They liked it better than I did.  I didn't dislike it, but I'm not a big ginger beer fan (which is why I don't like a "dark and stormy," which Jeri, Phil and Walt love to drink).

We brought Kathy out for our last "toast" together a s 4-some (see Photo of the Day) and let her sit on the table through dinner.

It was my turn to make the dinner and I had found a weird recipe on the A Year of Slow Cooking web site that sounded in intriguing.

Lemon Jello Chicken

3 to 4 pounds chicken parts (I used frozen legs and a few breast halves)
1 (6_ounce) box Lemon Jello powder
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 tablespoon prepared Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon dried minced onion flakes (or one tiny onion, finely diced)

Use a 4 to 6 quart slow cooker. I used a 4_quart for this one, and didn't brown the legs beforehand. The color on the chicken you see up above came only from slow_cooking. If you prefer more of a brown color, or more texture, go ahead and brown beforehand.

My chicken was frozen solid, too. If you have thawed chicken, shave about 90 minutes off of the cooking time.

Place the chicken into your slow cooker. In a small mixing bowl, combine the jello powder, melted butter, Dijon mustard, and onion flakes. Stir together to make a paste. This isn't liquidy at all-- it's sort of a combo between paste and playdough. Smear this onto your chicken the best you can.

Cover, and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours. I cooked our chicken on low for exactly 7 hours, then kept it on the warm setting for another 2 hours.

Serve with mashed potatoes, or rice pilaf and something green.

Sit back and watch your family go nuts.

We all admitted it sounded strange, but we all also agreed it was very tasty!  And there is enough left over for dinner tomorrow night (my mother hates to have us leave a scrap of food behind when we leave).

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At the end of the day, it had been a good last time with Kathy and in the morning, we would finally take her home...


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One last toast with Kathy

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