Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Lovely Day

A friend of mine came to our home to celebrate her birthday on Tuesday. Our conversation led to the topic of clutter. We decided that sometimes, in the name of "decluttering," we can make our homes stark and unappealing. It is the small touches that make a house a home. I found the wooden fruit stand (pictured above) at our local thrift store, for a dollar. I like the home we made for our little wooden bird.

Speaking of friends, we were graced today with a visit from Molly, our long-time, treasured friend. She taught English to Travis many years ago, and she held Will, our first born, when he was only minutes old. Molly came through our doors,  bursting with her contagious charisma and enthusiasm. She brought some wonderful gifts for the children. Molly never had children of her own, but you would never know it. She knows just what children like and want!

Molly prepared the most darling valentine kit for Mary Margaret, and she brought Sam a VERY cool electronic kit. Needless to say, the children were busy all day!

John Paul played with the set for about three hours this evening. He said: "You can really learn a lot using these things!" What I love about this kit is that you DO learn a lot, but the projects are very easy and snap right together. My nine and ten year olds easily do these on their own.

Emily was busy today making valentines and "frames" for her special pictures. She has detailed some of her craft ideas on her blog: Mish Mash Dezine

Molly brought a special gift for me, too. I can't wait to start reading  this book!

We had tortellini soup for lunch. So easy to make. Recipe follows picture.

Saute a chopped onion in 2 Tablespoons of olive oil. Add two small (I think 14.5 oz) cans of diced tomatoes. Bring to a boil. Turn down. Add six cups of chicken stock and one small package of chopped frozen spinach. Add seasoning: salt to taste, Italian seasoning (about 3 tsp), garlic powder (about 1 tsp). Simmer a couple of minutes. Add one can of drained kidney beans, then one package of cheese tortellini. You could add Italian sausage, too, but I prefer to serve this soup meatless. Top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. I like this soup because you can put it together so quickly-  about 10- 15 minutes, start to finish.

To accompany the Tortellini soup, I made cheese-herb bread. This morning I made cream biscuits for breakfast. I had doubled the recipe, so for lunch I took the remaining biscuits, sliced them in half, buttered them, sprinkled them with Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and cheese. Then I broiled them for about 2-3 minutes. Makes a great snack, too!

All and all, it was a lovely day. And now comes the best part....goodnight!