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Thursday, March 6, 2014

Recipe Blogging: Easy College Meal with pictures

The easiest, yummiest, quickest meal is to follow: Toasted wrap with secret ingredient, homemade creme fraiche.

Begin with the best tortillas on the market.

After cooking one side, flip over, add some deli turkey or any other meat of choice. Then sprinkle with cheese.

I love extra sharp cheddar, but anything will do. I buy the bar because it is cheaper, and because then you can avoid the chemicals that all grated cheeses have in order to keep the pieces from sticking to each other.

Add some black beans from a can. You can save the unused beans in a tupperware for tomorrow when you are craving this meal again. I didn't add the beans today, but I am wishing worth France that I did.

Then add all your favorite vegetables. Green onions might just be my absolute favorite food. So I cut up two green onions for my wrap. I bought a bunch of other vegetables - cucumber, avocado, sometimes peppers and tomatoes - but I found that just a good dose of green onions alone does the trick. Other vegetables sometimes take away from the greatness of the green onion.

In order to speed up the cooking process, I just use kitchen scissors to cut up the onions instead of a knife. 

I just so happened to have some left over creme fraiche from a month or so ago. Creme fraiche is quite expensive, but it is so easy to make. Just put a few cups of heavy whipping cream in a bowl and mix in a few tablespoons of buttermilk. Then let it sit on the counter with a clean rag over it for 24 hours. Viola: Creme fraiche. It will get thicker as you let it sit in the fridge.

Easy Breazy. The creme fraiche turned this simple I-didn't-have-time-to-cook recipe into your everyday gourmet meal.

I hope you have enjoyed. Signing out.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Book Review: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

Betty Smith, in her novel, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, weaves together the perspectives of an American family about one hundred years ago. This book was a mind opener for me, and I would definitely recommend it to any mature adult who knows what he or she believes in.

Although I am a conservative person (maybe getting more conservative every day), I do believe in the poverty cycle as a force that cannot always be over come by the American Dream. Although I have not experienced poverty first hand, I think we are too quick to say "work harder" or "spend your money differently" to those in need. This book takes a peek into social class issues, European racial issues, and even just people issues that occurred around 1910, but it turns out, many of these "issues" as still prevalent today, maybe in a new skin, but still very much alive.

But then again, this book not only lends a lens today humanity today, but digs into life right after the turn of the century, the ideas that sprung up, that died, that carried on. The acculturation, or possibly assimilation, that immigrants must experience upon entering the melange of America, and how that trickles out among second and third generations, how family culture and the culture of Manhattan blend or veer apart - what's more is the families of this novel are German and Irish, races that are now a part of most people's schema of America (although I have to add in that the American race should not be looked at as white or European, but a beautiful blend of many other cultures as well: these "other" races should not be seen as an separate other, but as a part of the whole, an important part of the true picture of America).

Nearing the last few chapters, I was longing for this book to never end. I wanted to follow Francy's story further. I wanted to know if she lost her Brooklyn accent, who does she marry, what happens to Neeley? But I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone. I has many "mature scenes" including an almost-rape, adultery, and the main character regretting saying no to losing her virginity. Nothing, I felt, was disrespectful or crass, but I know I would not put this book in the hands of one of my eight graders. The themes are really beyond their years anyway.

I will admit, at parts, the beginning was a bit slow, but now I am missing the story and the characters like you miss an old friend who has moved away and lived a bit since you saw her last. I actually listened to it on CD and enjoyed how the reader imitated many different accents. If you want to fall into a different life, learn more about people and humanity, or just become more well read, I recommend this book. It's a charm.

Monday, March 3, 2014

A few phrases that I like today

Heavenly Father is so aware of you.
Rejoice and wait upon Him.
Hard days hard, easy days easy.
Anything for you baby.
He can guide the feet that move.
You decide today, and every moment until that day.
"It is important to look at choices as opportunists, not as frustrations." 
I have confidence in Him.
"It seems to me the very desert is singing." from Ben Hur
"Be thankful for the fleas." Corrie Ten Boom
"If you are not in over your head, how will you know how tall you are." - T. S. Eliot
"I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears." - Proverbs
"But He knoweth the way that I take: when He hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold." - Job

Sunday, March 2, 2014

My defiance of coats

It is only just barely March here in Utah, and I have developed a defiance of coats. For the past week, I have attempted to go to work, church, or anywhere really, without a coat. Besides being a cold all the time, there hasn't been too many consequences.

Today, for example, I didn't wear my coat to church, so I didn't have to carry a coat around at church, and I did't have to pick hairs off my coat the entire time at church (okay, gross, I know, but long hair gets everywhere, especially on coats).

So now as I sit in my empty apartment, gazing out at the dimming sky that often comes with overcast evenings, I am sitting on my couch next to my coat, because I threw it there before I walked out the door to church this morning.

And I am serious when I say that it is sitting there with me, making that same zig-zag position a person  makes when sitting down. If coats would talk, would mine tell me it's lonely? Do coats get cold when people don't wrap inside them?

My purple plum coat stays silent, like coats should. Probably happy to be off the hanger, on the couch by the window, watching blue-grey skies turn steal, in a quiet apartment on a Sunday afternoon.

There will be no mountain glow tonight. That's what I call it when the setting sun shines on the mountains making them illuminate. But when it is cloudy and cold and a coat is needed or advised, dusk slips to dark without mountain glow.

Just steal blue sky glow tonight, just soft rainless skies tonight.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

March Slice of Life Challenge

So it is March again, and that means the Slice of Life Challenge. I am don't think I will actually post the the challenge this year, but just write every day in March. Lately I have had a lot of thoughts about life, bloggers, people, those types of things, but I haven't blogged about it. So here goes my type of March Madness. To tell you the truth, I am not even committed to doing the challenge. But it is 8:40 in March first, and I thought that I better post today to keep my options open and give me one more day to decide. So au revoir - 再见 - see ya tomorrow - maybe.