It’s been an interesting week here. The men left Wednesday for the West, ahead of us women, and so we are outnumbered by kids, 2:1 (or in our case, 6:3). I’ve been staying over at the (little) boys’ house to help out, and it’s a different world from little girls. ‡
BUT, since I don’t have my computer or internet over there, I’ve had more time to devote to writing and talking (when not stopping one boy from hitting the other). Which is life-giving to me. I’ve been searching out ways to ‘strengthen myself’ through new and old methods. Some of those I will try to share here, others may not be possible to share. And some ways that can bring life to my day I am just now learning.
For example: I never knew how much I enjoyed cooking food until I was in a situation where cooking for myself wasn’t necessary for each meal. Most people would love to not have to worry about buying groceries, planning and then cooking a meal, but lack of choice can be just as much of a pain sometimes.
So yesterday, when our house-helper suddenly couldn’t come to make dinner, I jumped at the opportunity. I’ve felt limited in my ability to make the meals I used to in this country, because the ingredients for baking are hard if not impossible to find, and there are no ovens in homes here. But there are more fresh veggies and fruits to be had, so I wound up my courage (and kicked the defeatist attitude to the corner) and sailed out of our apartment to track down what I needed to make dinner for six kids and three adults.‡‡
Thanks go to Sara for sending me Joy the Baker‘s website. I took two potato dishes: Roasted Garlic Potatoes, and a mixed up Potato Hash to work on, that I was pretty sure I could pull off in a first attempt, and that I would also be able to lay my hands on the needed ingredients.
(For those not food inclined, skip this paragraph). I added zucchini to the hash, and had a time of it finding spinach at the market.* But all my work paid off! It was definitely yummy, and I was thankful for spending the extra money on canned corn from the import section, to sweeten the dish. The kids’ leftover mini-hotdogs got cut up and fried with the veggies, but I didn’t try them myself… meat is enough of a question for me in this country** and processed meat here? No thank you.
My parents will be glad to hear that I cleaned the kitchen both before and after cooking – including dishes.
The evenings are interesting while the guys are gone, because I shower (quickly) at 7:10, then head over to the other house as soon as I pack what I need for the next day.
Have I mentioned that I love my scooter? Because I do. A Lot.
John wants me to name it. I think Ashley would approve this. But what do you name a CN scooter? An American name? That doesn’t seem right.
BEAUTY: creating pretty & healthy meals
TRUTH: Tim Keller’s podcast – How S.n Makes Us Addicts
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‡ I’m sure all the parents out there are laughing at me.
‡‡ Thankfully for the kids, there were plenty of leftovers from previous meals to satisfy them while my own meal took a bit longer than planned.
* Thank you iPod, and translating programs, and my broken language skills… the grocery girls rolled their eyes, took the greens I had gathered and walked off… then brought back something totally different.
** (is that really lamb?!?)