Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Punctual Pumpkins

Amazingly we got to the pumpkin thing before the night before Halloween. And we carved our pumpkins before they started to rot. I know - I'm on a roll.We went to a farmer's stand on the highway this year to pick out pumpkins. Jake was gone to Chicago, so Kelsey went with us. Norah was thrilled and I wish I could have gotten a picture of her pointing to each pumpkin hunched over like she was going to start a belly laugh any minute.
I don't know what this pose of Helen's was. I said "Say cheese." and quickly snapped a picture in hopes of getting a cute one of the girls, and that second Helen looked away and struck this pose. Strange things come out of people around Halloween I guess.Helen was so excited to pick her own pumpkin this year. I told her she could get a big one and I would carry it for her, but she was insistent that she wanted a small one so she could carry it.
Jake got done carving the third pumpkin and Helen sat down, drew where she wanted to cut, and carved out a nose, eye brows, and something between the eyes all by herself. We didn't even realize she was doing it until the nose (1st thing) was popped out. She is a good little carver, and thankfully she didn't cut herself with the knife.

Norah was forced against her will happy to watch. Chocolate chips kept her content and muffled the screaming. We were able to get a smile from her for a picture.

Helen & I at work. Norah is in the background wondering if we have more chocolate.

Here is what the designs looked like in the daylight.

The true test was once night came.
We think they look great.

ABC's & 123's

Last week Helen started pre-school.  I know it is a weird time to start, but we were having potty issues.  We still are. But I found a teacher who still had open enrollment and would work with us with the potty problems.  Helen is fine about going potty at pre-school and anytime we are out and about, but at only home, she is so-so.

Picking a pre-school was traumatic for Helen.  I thought it would be fun for her to go see.  Turns out she was traumatized because we had to leave each one.  Poor girl really wants the socialization and to learn.

She loves it.

When we got to the pre-school the first day she tapped me on my shoulder as I was finding my purse in the car.  She had undone her seat belt as soon as the car had stopped.  I asked her "What, sweetie?"  She replied, "I just need to give you a hug because I am going to preschool."  When I got out of the car she said "Bye."  I told her I had to go in and pay her teacher.  Once inside she sat right down and started working.  Too bad it was on someone else's paper at first.  She had no problems about me leaving once it was time.

It is fun for me to see her at the end of class two times a week and to see all the stuff she is doing.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

African Beef Curry

Awhile back we made this curry dish and loved it. I'll definitely make this one again on a night we want curry. It is different and I wasn't too sure about all the different toppings, but being who I am, I wanted to try it. Jake & Helen enjoyed it too (for her the highlight was mainly putting toppings on).  You'll have to forgive me.  The day we had this is when I first got a new lens for our camera.  I took some cool shots of the toppings, but never got a picture of the finished dish with the rice and toppings all together.

1 pound lean beef stew meat, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 small onion, chopped
1 small sweet red pepper, chopped
1 small sweet green pepper, chopped
1 to 2 Tablespoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Hot cooked rice

In a large saucepan, combine the first seven ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer fro 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until meat is tender.
Serve with rice. Garnish with toppings listed below, all of which are optional according to your likes. We like everything. Yield 4 servings.


  • Raisins
  • Salted peanuts, chopped
  • Coconut
  • Cucumbers, chopped
  • Banana, sliced
  • Onion, diced
  • Pineapple Tidbits
  • Mandarin Oranges
  • Red & Green Sweet Peppers, chopped & mixed
  • Tomato, diced

I got this recipe from Taste of Home Feb & March 2008; it was contributed by Heather E.

Mission Organize Apartment