One of the homey skills I’ve always wanted to learn is how to make cheese. I may have too much of an affinity for cheese (never mind cake), but this desire has been as deeply rooted as it has been unsuccessful. Sure, I only tried to make cheese once, or twice if you count my attempt to fix said failure. In those attempts, I never made anything close to resembling cheese. Instead, I made a somewhat goopy milk and cream mixture. The unsuccessful cheese has lingered away in the back of my mind as something to be overcome… at some point in the future. Well, the future has arrived, my friends! And it’s a cheesy as I am!
Maintaining and cultivating a Jewish household is important to me. Naturally, everyone has different ideas of what that means, but celebrating Jewish holidays is a cornerstone of what my Jewish household means. We will celebrate other holidays at other people’s houses, much like we celebrate another person’s birthday though it is not our own.
We have been planning to replace the flooring this year since we bought the house two years ago. Really, the carpet should probably have been replaced sooner than that, but as with all the maintenance that had been deferred on the house, the carpet seemed a much lower priority than painting the exterior of the house and tackling the water issues in the backyard and much less fun than starting a garden. So, the carpet waited, threadbare and trampled underfoot.
I try pretty hard to be healthy on a regular basis. I eat a fairly reasonable amount of sweets. Sure, I have fibromyalgia, but I also exercise just about daily. I floss. I brush my teeth twice a day. I once gave an impromptu lecture on how to determine which types of yogurts were healthiest to my foster kiddos who preferred yogurts that were essentially the equivalent of almost eating a snickers for breakfast. I know. I’m a killjoy.
I also love cakes.
I’m participating in the Food in Jars Mastery Challenge, and the March skill is jelly or shrubs. I’ve never made jelly (I typically prefer jams), and I had to google what a shrub is (a sugary fruit-vinegar combination used in cocktails or tonic water). I have a tendency to go a little overboard when it comes to challenges; for example, I made three marmalades in January over the long Martin Luther King Jr. weekend. With the chaos of foundation repairs, new flooring, a wood stove, seven yards of dirt in the driveway, and taking in a new foster kiddo, I managed to carve out time on Sunday to make two jellies and a shrub. Yep, I’m a touch crazy and surprisingly not too tired.
My mom moved to South Carolina just under a year ago, and I miss her for many reasons. The first Super Bowl party without my family was a little rough because I have to start new traditions after losing an old one. My husband was a little bummed to miss out on the tradition of drinking Scotch with my stepdad while watching the big game. Scotch is what has made watching the football game tolerable for my husband. I miss the crazy amounts of food my mom has always made for the game.
Last week was a whirlwind of activity. We took in a new foster kiddo, which is not the story du jour but certainly merits its own post. We also moved most of the furniture out of the house and into the garage/kitchen so that the foundation repairmen could enter our house, drill through our floor, and pump a bunch of plastic foam under it. After all that work, we feasted on Chinese food and slept on mattresses on the floor, dreaming of a level floor and engineered hardwood.