Emily

Author's details

Name: Emily
Date registered: March 3, 2012
URL: http://umonfire.blogspot.com/

Latest posts

  1. nashvillian pastoral: menu plan november iv — November 23, 2014
  2. nashvillian pastoral: menu plan november iii — November 17, 2014
  3. nashvillian pastoral: todd: 18 months — November 14, 2014
  4. nashvillian pastoral: my children aren’t “exclusive” — November 11, 2014
  5. nashvillian pastoral: menu plan november ii — November 10, 2014

Author's posts listings

Nov 23 2014

nashvillian pastoral: menu plan november iv

Original post at http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/NashvillianPastoral/~3/3d3uZsiTNIA/menu-plan-november-iv.html


I've got one thing on the brain, folks, and that's seasonal fruit!  Thursday I received my shipment of eight pounds of organic cranberries and 2 gallons of fresh apple cider.  Friday I picked up my ten pounds of organic satsumas from Alabama.  I feel so rich in food right now.



Saturday I put up four pints of cranberry sauce made with sucanat and apple cider.  Recipe forthcoming!  So yummy.  Cranberry sauce is hands-down my favorite part of the Thanksgiving meal, and I really am a sucker for the kind from the can.  So I'm bringing at least one pint to my sister's for Thanksgiving this week.  I'm also bringing a chocolate-maple-bourbon pecan pie (swoon) and a sorghum pumpkin pie with gingersnap crust.  Those are already ready and waiting in the freezer for me.

I'm going to do a spiced cranberry jam soon, and also do my annual batch of satsuma marmalade.  Working with fresh, local, seasonal, beautiful produce just makes me so thankful to God for the perfect and magical workings of his creation.  Like for instance:  how did God know that during the winter, when immunity is low and disease abounds, that we need extra vitamin C from citrus and the ridiculous antioxidant power of cranberries!?  Fitting for this week of giving thanks.  :)

We are leaving for my sister's on Tuesday, and will take lots of food with us for the trip.  I'm hopeful that the weather will allow us to stop at a nice rest area, stretch, eat lunch, and not be so cooped up.

So the menu will look a little different this week.  I hope you enjoy the change of pace.

Sunday
-- lunch:  chicken salad sandwiches on sourdough with satsumas
-- supper:  pot roast with carrots & kohlrabi, mashed sweet potatoes

Monday
-- lunch:  egg salad sandwiches on sourdough (I've been making it with pepper relish instead of gherkins, and it is to die for), crudite with herbed yogurt dip
-- supper:  acorn squash stuffed with chickpeas and couscous

Tuesday
-- lunch:  on the road.  I'm packing veggie beef soup in a thermos, sourdough bread, raw cheese, apples, and milk for the crew.
-- supper:  We will be at my sister's!  I have no idea, but I hope it's something delicious.

Wednesday and Thursday are at my sister's.

Friday 
-- lunch:  on the road to Valparaiso for a wedding!  We will probably either bring some leftovers to munch, or stop somewhere easy with all four of our kids.
-- supper:   will be the rehearsal dinner for my friends Parth and Julianne, whose wedding I am so so so excited to be officiating.

Saturday
-- lunch:  who knows?  
-- supper:  the WEDDING!




Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/11/menu-plan-november-iv/

Nov 17 2014

nashvillian pastoral: menu plan november iii

Original post at http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/NashvillianPastoral/~3/5mUqJy7SO8w/menu-plan-november-iii.html


We have returned from Retreat!  It was a cold, blustery, awesome time.  The kids love playing up there, and I enjoy having a break from the routine and breathing the fresh mountain air.  We even did a little hiking!

But now we are back to reality.  We are nearing the Thanksgiving holiday, and I'm excited!  We get a big shipment of 8 pounds of organic cranberries this Thursday, and I am so pumped to make cranberry sauce with natural sweeteners and can it up to take to my sister's!

So, down to the nitty gritty.  Here's what we're eating!

Some notes:  we literally always have one of two things for breakfast if we are at home.


1)  -- scrambled eggs from our Mennonite hens
     -- homemade sourdough toast/English muffins/biscuits
     -- raw butter we have been making from our Mennonite cow cream
     -- local raw honey or homemade preserves
     -- seasonal fruit from our CSA or something I canned like peaches, pears, or applesauce

2) -- pancakes
    -- raw butter
    -- real maple syrup
    -- seasonal fruit

Vicki usually requests #2.  If we have time, I'm happy to oblige.

Since it is so monotonous, I'm not going to put breakfast on the menu plan.

Lunches are pretty much always leftovers.  If I do some actual cooking for lunch, I will put it in the plan.  If not, just assume it's something unexciting.

For drinks, we always have raw milk on hand.  We also drink Berkey filtered water, kombucha, or homemade soda from our ginger bug.  Lately I've been drinking the buttermilk left after butter-making - yum!

Finally, I try to make one dessert-ish item that we nibble on all week for snacks and desserts.  This week I'm making up a batch of brown rice pudding from some leftover rice.

Sunday
-- lunch:  we got away from the Retreat early enough to stop in Manchester
-- supper:  we are bringing an appetizer to Family Dinner.  We have been having a crazy challenge to try to use up this jar of red curry paste . . . long story.  Anyway, we made a red curry peanut dip and brought veggie sticks.

Monday
-- supper:  black bean and sweet potato enchiladas, Spanish rice with spinach

Tuesday
-- supper:  cheeseburgers on sourdough buns with fixings (tomato, onion, homemade ketchup, mustard, homemade kraut, pickle relish), cinnamon sweet potato fries

Wednesday
-- supper:  broiled sesame-soy salmon on a bed of wilted tat soi, steamed rice

Thursday
-- supper:  roast pork loin with apples, roast cabbage wedges and potatoes

Friday
-- supper:  pizza on sourdough crust with homemade mozzarella, ricotta, acorn squash, and pears

Saturday
-- lunch:  chicken tortilla soup



-- supper:  roast chicken, mashed potatoes, callaloo of mustard greens, fried green tomatoes



Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/11/menu-plan-november-iii/

Nov 14 2014

nashvillian pastoral: todd: 18 months

Original post at http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/NashvillianPastoral/~3/7pe9SP416ic/todd-18-months.html


On November 16, Todd will be 1 1/2 years old!  Where has the time gone?  He is such a delightful child.  Always smiling, always bringing joy wherever he goes.  Here is what he has been doing:


Absolutely loving the new playhouse his Memaw got for him and sis.


Always wanting to ride the "ho-see" as we leave Vicki at her Encore program.


Still rear-facing!  And being a super-cute blondie.


Being lobster man for Halloween. 


Enjoying a visit from Mom at the Stone Soup luncheon at his daycare.


Helping me get ready for a King's Daughters banquet.


Being obsessed with going jogging, and the stroller in general.


Making a pallet to post up with sis on the floor and watch Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.

18 months is such a great age.  I'm enjoying every minute of it, as he grows, adds words and phrases by the day, and learns more independence.





Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/11/todd-18-months/

Nov 11 2014

nashvillian pastoral: my children aren’t “exclusive”

Original post at http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/NashvillianPastoral/~3/aBkoYfpbsH4/my-children-arent-exclusive.html


Parenting these days isn't for the faint of heart.  At least for those who have the internet at their disposal from the first moment they see two lines on the stick, through the late nights up with the newborn, to the late nights up with the toddler, to the late nights up waiting on the teenager . . . wait, do I sense a theme?  :)

The kids on a pallet watching TV - oh wait, that was something else they weren't supposed to do, right?
Seriously, though - it is just way too easy to ask Google:  "Am I a bad parent?"  "How do I get the baby to sleep?"  "I yelled at my toddler is she ruined forever?"

Parents who didn't have the advantage of Google and 3780340 parenting books seemed to have a lot more peace of mind.  Perhaps they didn't know they were making such monstrous mistakes as not feeding their kids all organic home-pureed baby food.

Kids these days have to be "exclusively" everything, if they want a chance at success.  It starts with birth.  Exclusive medication-free, of course.  Wait, I failed that one.  I had a half-dose of some dope that gave me amazing hallucinations during Vicki's birth.  Then, with Todd, well - no chance for any medication although I would have traded my left brain for some at one point.  Nope, my kids weren't exclusively free of medications at birth.

After birth comes vaccinations.  We have neither followed a standard vaccination schedule, nor refused to vaccinate.  Wait - you mean there's another option than being exclusively pro or anti vaccine!?

Let's not forget cloth diapers.  Well, except for all those times I've used disposable diapers.  Then we can forget them.  But hey, every time I use a cloth diaper, it's one less disposable in the landfill, right?

Next - exclusively breast-fed, naturally.  Except that didn't quite work out for me either.  I nursed them both as much as I could (and still nurse Todd), and recognized that they wouldn't die from being fed formula the rest of the time.  No exclusivity for my combo-fed babies.

Then the sleep training debacle.  Of course, you're either spoiling your kids and defiling your marriage by letting your kids sleep in your bed, or you're abusing your kids by letting them cry in their cribs at night while you pee by yourself for once in your life.  No middle ground here either.  Exclusively attachment parenting or cry-it-out.  Well, I failed on that one too.  My babies sleep with me all the time, except for when Vicki started sleeping by herself when she was six months and she cried a bunch.  Then she slept through the night.  Looks like I failed to be consistent on this point, as well.

When your kids start eating real food, you are bombarded by more alarmist messages:  If you feed them before six months they will be obese!  If you feed them non-organic food they will get autism!  The doctor is telling you to give them gruel with no nutritive value that looks awful.  Once again - I was never able to achieve anything exclusive.  I was the weirdo who pureed coconut oil and chicken stock and homemade yogurt into squash and took it to my kids' daycare.  But I also let them eat my fries soaked in GMO canola oil.  Nope - life is too short to ever leave a French fry behind.

And now that we are through all those hurdles, the lack of exclusivity continues.  Sometimes I yell at my kids.  Mostly I try to hug them.  Very occasionally they get spanked.  I guess this disqualified me from the ranks of the attachment parenting people.  But I also don't discipline them with rods and crazy Biblical teachings, either, so I guess I can't be a part of the Train Up a Child community.

There will be more crossroads in the future.  Someday my kids will choose gender identities and sexual orientations.  I have no idea if they will be exclusively gay or straight.  And that's totally cool with me.  Someday, perhaps, they will choose partners - and I'm sure I will neither love nor hate those people, but have extremely nuanced feelings about them.

See, life isn't about exclusivity.  I hope the one message they are seeing from me, through all of this, is that life is messy and complicated.  People who have doctrinaire stances on these issues are setting themselves and their kids up for hard re-actions.  There isn't much I can be sure of.

But there is one thing.  My children are exclusively loved and protected by God.  They are exclusively inhabited by the Holy Spirit, and held by a community of faith.  God's love for them is perfect and God needs no Google or manual to show how to love children.  So I'm leaving it up to him.  Because obviously I can't get it right!  And I've really quit trying to be so perfect.

Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/11/my-children-arent-exclusive/

Nov 10 2014

nashvillian pastoral: menu plan november ii

Original post at http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/NashvillianPastoral/~3/41pq-zqAIvs/menu-plan-november-ii.html


We have an exciting week coming up!  Friday afternoon we will be leaving for our annual all-church retreat to the gorgeous Beersheba Springs Assembly.  It's a special, sacred place for us.  Jeff and I met just down the road and were married at the Assembly.  Even though our marriage is now over, Jeff and I remain close friends and celebrate the fact that we began our family at that moment in time at the Assembly.  :)

Some notes:  we literally always have one of two things for breakfast if we are at home.


1)  -- scrambled eggs from our Mennonite hens
     -- homemade sourdough toast/English muffins/biscuits
     -- raw butter we have been making from our Mennonite cow cream
     -- local raw honey or homemade preserves
     -- seasonal fruit from our CSA or something I canned like peaches, pears, or applesauce

2) -- pancakes
    -- raw butter
    -- real maple syrup
    -- seasonal fruit

Vicki usually requests #2.  If we have time, I'm happy to oblige.

Since it is so monotonous, I'm not going to put breakfast on the menu plan.

Lunches are pretty much always leftovers.  If I do some actual cooking for lunch, I will put it in the plan.  If not, just assume it's something unexciting.

For drinks, we always have raw milk on hand.  We also drink Berkey filtered water, kombucha, or homemade soda from our ginger bug.  Lately I've been drinking the buttermilk left after butter-making - yum!

Finally, I try to make one dessert-ish item that we nibble on all week for snacks and desserts.  I think this week I will do some frozen yogurt using rhubarb jam I put up over the summer.

Sunday
-- lunch:  I'll bring up a pot roast from the freezer for dinner after church, along with some green beans, roast acorn squash, and stewed collard greens.
-- supper:  Family Dinner!  It's our week for dessert, and I'm still tweaking my pie recipes for Thanksgiving.  I'm bringing this sorghum pumpkin pie with this gingersnap crust.

Monday
-- supper:  fried green tomato sandwiches on sourdough bread with bacon & mayonnaise, homemade potato chips

Tuesday
-- supper:  meatloaf, kohlrabi puree, green beans, whole roasted cauliflower

Wednesday
-- supper:  tuna melts on sourdough with raw cheese, cauliflower & sweet pepper crudite with herbed yogurt dip

Thursday
-- supper:  stir-fried pork loin with bok choi & green peppers, Napa cabbage salad with Asian dressing and crushed peanuts

Friday & Saturday meals will be on retreat!

Enjoy the week.  What are you eating?

[This post submitted to Menu Plan Monday 11/10/14.]

Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/11/menu-plan-november-ii/

Nov 09 2014

nashvillian pastoral: meatloaf, smeatloaf, double-beatloaf . . .

Original post at http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/NashvillianPastoral/~3/PM2lQ2WgpRw/meatloaf-smeatloaf-double-beatloaf.html




We're getting into the season for watching A Christmas Story!  My favorite scene is where the mom keeps trying to sit down to eat while her kids and husband continually ask her to get stuff for them from the kitchen.  The narrator says, "My mom hadn't had a hot meal for herself in 15 years."  So true, so true.  I also love when Ricky, the little brother, is complaining about how much he hates meatloaf.

When we bought our half cow last spring (I still have to tell you about that, don't I?), we got a lot of ground beef.  It's sort of the nature of the thing.  Not every part of a cow is fit to be sliced up into steaks.  A lot of it is scrap and bits that need to just be all tossed together and ground up.  In our menu plans, ground beef figures prominently.  We eat it one night a week, usually on Tuesdays.  There are a lot of things you can do with ground beef!  Burgers, Korean beef, chili, hamburger corn pone (this is an amazing Southern dish I will write up soon!), meat sauce for pasta, beef tacos, BBQ beef, shepherds pie, or . . . meatloaf.

I have a few tricks I incorporate into a standard Better Homes & Gardens meatloaf recipe, so check it out:


Classic Meatloaf
2 eggs
3/4 cup milk
1 C breadcrumbs (3/4 C if totally dry, 2 C if totally soft - see below)
1/4 C grated onion
1 T dried parsley (or 3 T fresh)
1 t salt
1/2 t dried oregano (or 1 1/2 t fresh)
1 1/2 lb ground beef
1/2 C ketchup
1/4 C sucanat or brown sugar
2 t yellow mustard

Makes 6-8 servings.

Oven 350 F.

Start by mixing the eggs and milk in a large bowl.


Add the breadcrumbs.  This is a great time to use up that heel of your homemade sourdough loaf, or the cracker crumbles at the bottom of your yogurt dough cracker bag.  If your bread is very fresh and moist, aim for 2 cups of crumbs.  If your bread is stale, aim for 1 cup of crumbs.  If you are using cracker crumbs or the fine breadcrumbs you buy in a canister from the store (which I don't recommend!), do 3/4 cup.  If you are making your own, just whiz it up in the food processor.


Add the onion.  This is one of my tricks.  You never properly cook the onions in a meatloaf, and you don't want to crunch into a big chunk of onion while you're eating.  So grate them on a box grater (I have a little tiny one - isn't it cute?!), and then add the grated onion and juice to the bowl.


Add the parsley, salt, and oregano.




Mix well, then add the ground beef.  Mix it all very thoroughly with your hands.



Now, here is another one of my tricks.  Honestly, my favorite part of the meatloaf is the outer crust glazed with sweetened ketchup.  I want more surface area. I don't use a loaf pan, because it limits my crust.  I also make mine into two loaves, because one again - more surface area for glaze!  So shape your meat mixture into two equally-sized loaves on a baking sheet.


Pop it into a 350 oven for an hour or so, until they read 160 F on a thermometer.  Meanwhile, mix together the ketchup (a great time to use your own homemade ketchup!), sucanat/brown sugar, and mustard.


After the loaves are up to temperature, paint them with the ketchup glaze.  Put them back into the oven for ten more minutes, then let them rest for ten minutes before enjoying!

Permanent link to this article: http://methoblog.com/3_0/2014/11/meatloaf-smeatloaf-double-beatloaf/

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