March 30, 2013

My Holy Week


I have decided to take a week off from blogging and concentrate on the events of Holy Week.
No manual mode Monday, or Tuesday in the kitchen or needle and thread or Thursday theme...and so on. I was planning to do more prayer, contemplation, spiritual reading, Easter reading with children, Holy Triduum liturgy and cleaning, and cooking and baking...:)

My week started not as I, or my family have planned...

The week consisted of visiting a doctor, an ER, different blood work tests and EKGs.
On Monday I had experienced an unusual dizziness with almost fainting feeling and heart pounding. In the store... with Kubus, very frightening thing. Tuesday and Wednesday went even worse, with uncontrollable shaking and a lot of fear. Fear of what is happening to me, why, and if it ever going to end or is it the end of me? No, I am not ready yet. My kids, my husband still need me. I have work to do here.

 Andrzej had to take care of me, the kids, the house and miss two days of work, not to mention doing shopping for the Easter. I did not want to go out by myself .
The tests came out very good, except for vitamin D ( I really need to move to more sunny place).
I do have an event monitor hooked up to me, and I am awaiting visit with a cardiologist in Boston.
I don't have any diagnosis but I am not as fearful as I was this past week.

And right now I am thankful for a chance to feel a little better, and for warm weather, for a beautiful orchid from Andrzej to brighten my spirits and for Easter tomorrow.

Today I have managed to participate in Holy Saturday events, like making hot cross buns for breakfast, blessing food in Polish parish, cooking food for tomorrow, decorating the egg tree and enjoying the gorgeous weather outside.

Tomorrow is Easter and that makes everything around me new, meaningful and hopeful again:)


March 24, 2013

Zeppole with Kubus {phfr}

 They were pretty delicious!!!
Kubus was very happy to be part of preparation, until...

...he discovered whipped cream on his finger. He had no idea what to do with it. So while I was recording his reaction, he picked a spoon up and used it to clean himself. It had never occurred to him, that he can lick his hand! 

Meanwhile, Zuzanna "cleaned up" the bowl herself, and Kubus was really disappointed with what was left for him. While he was holding this spoon he was crying  real-ly hard:(
 But the end he got what he wanted:)

Spring in my backyard

Gorgeous day today. The sun has invited me to the garden. I have caught a few signs of spring:)


Japanese maple


 Dogwood Tree



Blueberry Bush


March 22, 2013

the moment with butter

This is what I have found today on the kitchen counter top...

...and then I couldn't stop taking pictures.

Eventually, I had to take the butter away. I have met some resistance:)

Inspired by SouleMama.


March 21, 2013

Thursday theme: mud

All right, this one is not easy and not pretty, but I think I have managed.

I went for a mud hunt in my backyard. I would like to state that majority of this muddy mess was found in the sandbox. My backyard does NOT look this bad!!!

Now, go over to Cari and check other people's mud:)


Pennywise Platter Post

My first time participation in Pennywise Platter.

I like to cook, and sometimes I step away from the written and recommended recipes to create something of my own. The best person who creates something out of anything and it actually tastes delicious, is my mother in law. Too bad that she doesn't blog:)

This week I had half of a cooked chicken with all of its giblets. A few days ago I used it to make chicken broth. Kids are fighting the colds and did not mind having yummy soup with noodles.
To, whatever was left of broth, I added water and concentrated tomato paste. I spiced it up with salt and black pepper and tomato soup was ready.

Then my Polish genes kicked in and I have decided to make some pierogi with chicken.
 I took all of the meat of the chicken bones. Cut it in tiny pieces together with all the giblets.


 I added salt, black pepper, garlic powder, dried parsley flakes and 2 Tbls of ricotta cheese, to hold it together. For pierogi dough I used about 2 cups of flour, 1 egg, salt and about 1 cup of milk. I kneaded it, rolled it, cut it and stuffed with chicken. Then put the pierogi aside and started heating up a pot with water.

In the big pan I melted butter with olive oil and added 1 cut onion, 1 cubed sweet potato and a cup of very well chopped kale. I used the frozen one. I added salt and pepper and let it saute until soft and wonderfully smelling!

 Meanwhile the pot with  salted water was boiling so I put in the pierogi. I cooked them for about 5 minutes. After carefully draining them I added to the sauted veggies, and served.

They disappeared quite quickly!


March 19, 2013

In the kitchen on St Joseph's day


The day started so snowy and gloomy, that I did not feel like celebrating. At all.

The snow has changed into rain, girls had no school delay and I did not feel like sticking my nose out of the house. Except for the pictures:)

But after lunch, I had pulled myself together and started thinking about the cooking and baking. It was St Joseph's day after all and it required some festivity. I have decided to make some zeppole and wait for help from Zuzia to fill them out with cream. I did not have to ask her twice.

Pizza for dinner seemed appropriate, St Joseph is an official patron of Italy, and there are a lot of Jozef(s) in Poland, so while we are as much Italian as Irish, we can still celebrate!

I also wanted to acknowledge pope Francis inauguration day with Argentinian wine, but the only one found at home was the Chilean wine. The same continent, I thought, and used it as an excuse to open the bottle:)

The wine was good and the celebration was small, short and sweet.

Saint Joseph, pray for us!


March 18, 2013

Manual Mode Monday outlook

Outside the window
It is partly sunny, or partly cloudy. Pick and chose:)
There is a heavy snow in the forecast. Girls are hoping for snow day tomorrow. Andrzej has a snow day today. He went skiing. All by HIMSELF for the WHOLE day. Now I know why he is saving the vacation days...

In the kitchen
Nothing special. I am not ambitious the last few days. I had enough energy to make "green" dinner yesterday, to join in celebration of St Patrick day and Irish soda bread. Today I am cooking chicken broth. There are plenty od snuffles and coughs going on among the kids. They need some good nutritious soup.
Tomorrow is St. Joseph solemnity. Maybe something Italian with Argentinian wine? To celebrate with pope Francis?
Next week I am planning my Easter menu. I am Polish, and Polish people bake and prepare o lot of good food for holidays. Never mind that majority of it will end up in our own tummies. I hope not to become a victim of one of the deadly sins - GLUTTONY.

Around the house
Choosing the floor. Few major renovations in a couple of weeks. New wood floor on the first floor.
We were planning to do it three years ago. Couldn't decide on the color! Guess what, our opinions still vastly differ, but I gave up. I just want to have nice floor and NEW furniture in the living room. I am compromising... I know.

I am grateful
For longer days, even the snowy, cold ones; and for the old 200 pound TV. It is gone!!! I claimed the hallway back. It was really embarrassing...

Poor thing. Very stuffed. He had very bad night, and I with him. We are both tired today.
Now he is watching Blues Clues. I can't believe, another round of the blue puppy. It has been 15 years. It has started with a little boy that I was taking care of, in Austin.:)

She brought the snuffles from school last week. She is better today.
Yesterday came up with a new verb. She wanted Andrzej to find something to buy via Internet.
"Tata", she asked, "can you AMAZON it?":):):) Looove it!
This coming Saturday she has First Communion two hour retreat.

Looks like she is having good week so far, and it is only Monday. She won one of those "guess how many candies" jar thing. She invested  $ .50, and was just one number short, 373 out of 374 Jolly Ranchers. Candy anyone?

Toward improving physical health
I started counting my daily, weekly, monthly miles. The ones that I run, or walk or "elliptical". I still have to put the gadget on my blog. The daily mile. I 'll learn in this week.
Yesterday  I did one loop, 1.59 mile. It counted only 17 calories. It sounds a little fishy!
I am going to take two neighborhood loops today. Instead of dinner:)

Watching Father Barron's Catholicism with Andrzej. I do not have words to describe the series. Absolutely amazingly awesome. I could watch it without taking the break. Father's explanation, and logic is down to earth, and his calm passion about the faith and church really is contagious. His knowledge is vast and the pictures are beautiful.

The rest of the week
Preparing for Holy week, and Easter celebration. Finishing up inner and outer cleansing.

Picture I am sharing for Manual Mode Monday
                                                          1/40 F40 ISO200

My very favorite mug. Andrzej brought it for me from Munich a couple of years ago.
It is big enough to hold a good amount of liquid and it is very feminine. It works perfectly for improving mood, especially with hot Earl Grey in it:)


March 15, 2013

{this moment}

Sometimes few words, sometimes none. Moments that  make me happy, and stop my thoughts. Inspired by SouleMama.

Zuzanna's act of kindness:)


March 14, 2013

{pretty, happy, funny, real} in green

I am killing today two birds, as they say...:)

I can finally join Like mother, Like daughter {phfr} edition, on the day they post it. I am also joining Cari in adventures in photography. Which the adventures seem to be green this week. I guess because St Patrick Day is coming up. Yet, I need to admit...I am not Irish!

A few years back, Kateri tried to convince me, that we actually might be a little bit of Irish, because she was told in school, that everybody has a drop of Irish blood in them!
 I had to disappoint her... No, my child, our blood is 100% Polish. If there is some other mixture added to it, I do not know about it, but I can say with certainty, that is not Irish.
Nevertheless, upon coming to America, and specifically to North East ( in our Texan times, I do not remember big celebrations ), we started to go with the flow and embrace the Irish traditions. So we have a couple of books about St Patrick, and there are some of Leprechauns too. Kids wear something green to school ( not this year though ), and I bake Irish soda bread. I am not fond of corned beef, but potatoes and cabbage are quite welcome. I think that Irish people have few things in common with Polish Cuisine. 

In my garden. Sign of spring. I think and hope that the daffodils will boom for Easter!

Those shrubs are green all year round. I have no idea what they are. They were here when we bought our house 11 years ago. So much for my GREEN thumb!


My happy man with a green garbage truck!
Today is a garbage day in our neighborhood. We went for a walk, and ended up following a big, green garbage truck. I was thinking about taking camera and snapping pictures, but I did not want the garbage workers think that I was spying on them:)
My little boy's green socks:) I know, the bare piggies are much cuter, but I couldn't paint them green!
My green exercise ball. It is loosing its air. Not in use recently, and not because I gave up wii for Lent. I didn't, my girls did. I know, my wii coach has definitely gave up on me...
P.S. The {pretty} pictures are in aperture mode, the rest is in manual. K.