Friday, April 27, 2012

Split pea soup my children will eat

I meant to post this after Christmas.  Then after Easter.  Now, Aldi has Easter hams on clearance for $5 off and it's 40 degrees outside. Soup time!

Split Pea Soup

1 16 oz. package of green split peas, rinsed and drained
8 cups water
1 meaty ham bone
1 small onion, chopped
2/3 c. chopped carrots
2/3 c. chopped celery
1 raw potato, peeled and chopped
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon minced garlic
salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients except salt in a large pot with a lid.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Reduce heat to a simmer; cover and simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until peas are soft, stirring occasionally.

Remove bay leaves and ham bone.  Using a stick blender, puree soup to disguise all of the vegetables and their weird textures until smooth.  Cut meat off of ham bone and dice.  Add ham back to soup.  Taste for salt and add salt if needed.  Serve with grilled cheese sandwiches, using Daiya cheese for the dairy-free sandwiches.
Edit:  I'm guessing this is about 12-15 servings?  It's enough to serve our family of 6 for two dinners, plus my parents for one meal.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Anatomy of a midlife crisis

  • Stop continuously gestating and nursing for the first time since 2005.
  • Get some uninterrupted sleep.
  • Read books and blogs on decluttering and selling items to earn money.
  • Clean childrens' rooms, packing up clothing for children #3 and #4.
  • Realize that hall closet is full of 10 years of hand-me-downs.
  • Decide to tackle hall closet.
  • Attempt to make rational decisions about outgrown baby and toddler clothes.
  • Cry while sorting clothing.
  • Drive around with baby clothes in the van for a week.
  • Recall every single time a mother with older children tells you how much she misses this time.
  • Be terrified that this actually IS the best time in life and it's all downhill from here.
  • Realize that before long you will be blue-haired widow in front pew at church. [Husband: "Wait--I'm dead in this scenario?  That is depressing."]
  • Have breakdown at bible study.
  • Have friends bring you a CDP the next day that includes a framed photo of your children with a beautiful quote.
  • Cry, causing wisea** friends to say, "Yeah, we just wanted to make you cry again,"  to make you laugh.
  • Walk around fully aware of EVERY MOMENT like old ladies in the grocery store always tell you to be for about a week.  
  • Cry over every thing--even not cute things--your children do.
  • Realize that people CANNOT LIVE like this without going insane.  
  • Want to be back in fuzzy haze of day-to-day routine and survival.
  • Hate raw feeling of every emotion being exposed and being hyper-aware that children are growing up and away from you.
  • Listen to mother's wise words about how, even if you could, keeping children in their current states isn't fair to them and doesn't let them develop into their full selves.
  • Let mother point out good relationship people can have with adult children *cough*you are calling your mother for help right now at the age of thirty-seven*cough*.
  • Ride out the feelings for another week.
  • Have husband ask you if you want more children.
  • Answer that what you really want is to go back in time to when your kids were babies and relive things without being so tired and hormonal.  Husband: "...Wow."
  • Work on building even better relationships with these kiddos right here! instead of being sad about the babies being gone.
  • Panic about what you are going to be when you grow up.
  • Decide that can wait for another day.
  • Go to funeral of beloved relative.
  • Have beloved great-aunt talk to you about how it's hard to be one of the ones left behind.
  • Have minor panic attack.
  • Realize you are not in control of what happens and can only do the best you can.
  • Resolve to exercise more.