Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Coffee is Especially Good This Morning...

That might be because, in the interest of frugality AND yumminess, we happily discovered a bag of whole bean coffee at the grocery store that is cheaper than the pre-ground coffee we usually buy. And after this morning, I say "Sold!" - we have a new brand! We probably would anyway, because I'm beyond frugal and into cheapskat-ery; but this is actually better tasting !
But I think there are other reasons I'm especially enjoying my cupS of coffee this morning. It has been an intense few months around here - more so than usual. (More on that another day... really.) So I'm kind of always on the brink of "maxed out", although that sounds more stressed than I like to think of myself as.
This morning, I woke up to my husband rubbing my back and asking me if it would be alright to turn off the chicken.
Hm. That sounds weird. :0)
Let me explain.

When I cook a chicken, we save the carcass in a bag in the freezer until we have several (ewww... this is sounding weirder and weirder), then I throw them all in a huge pot and season them and simmer them for hours, and voila! Seriously good chicken stock, which I then freeze in containers to have ready for future recipes. During the hot summer, I do as much cooking as possible outside to avoid further heating up our non-air-conditioned house. And I just like cooking outside for some odd reason. We have the two-burner camp stove that I cooked on for the years that we lived in the travel trailer, and an 18 qt roaster that I use as an oven. So... I had the huge pot of chicken stock simmering on the outside stove, and, as Jeff discovered while he was making his breakfast, I let it simmer all night.

Since it's a done deal, I'm trying not to think about all the wasted propane. The stock is (thankfully) fine, and not wasted.
And for those of you that caught it, yes: my husband gets up before me. And it has taken me all 9 years of our marriage to be mostly OK with that. He has been fine with it from the get-go, and he keeps reminding me that since I get up every time the children wake in the night (which, with 6 under 8 is almost every night, at least once) and let him sleep, it is totally "fair".  I still feel like a bad wife sometimes though.
Which doesn't excuse what I did next:
I snuggled back into my pillow and went back to sleep.
And when my alarm went off, I hit snooze.
Mere seconds later, the bedroom door popped open and my husband said, urgently, "I need your help! Come quickly!"
I woke up  as I was stumbling through the bedroom door and down the stairs.
(Another explanation: (this is making for a long post...) Monday of this week, we adopted two hamsters from some friends of ours who are moving and can't take them along. These we brought home and placed their cage near the cage of the hamster we already owned. They're so cute all sitting there looking at each other! All the cages are together so that we can keep an eye on them as we train our young kittens to leave them alone. Got that? Are you remembering how determined a kitten can be when interested in a small, fuzzy, wiggly critter? Now multiply that by two kittens. Then multiply THAT by three hamsters. Then you add in the two toddlers who want to SEE the hamsters, and, well, I need more coffee before I do the math. 347)
So. As I bumbled down the stairs, my husband told me the story: He was eating at the dining room table (the hamsters are in the dining room, which is also -mostly- the school room) when he heard funny noises in the kitchen. He looked up, wondering what the noises were, and saw one of the kittens trotting by with a hamster in it's mouth !! He bolted after it, and of course, it scampered away faster than, well, as fast as a kitten wanting to hide with a hamster. He followed it to the girls' room, but he's too big to fit under the bunk bed, and kitty knew that. After a few seconds of reaching under, he decided to come get me rather than witness a murder just beyond his fingertips.
When I got there, the hamster was nonchalantly meandering across the floor, looking around like he was in an art museum or something. I almost scooped him up to take him home, then realized that this is the one who BIT me yesterday. Um. No scooping for you, bud. So I grabbed a little basket (all kinds of handy little doodads and cute containers in a room housing 4 girls!) and plopped it over him and scooted a Little Golden Book underneath. I carried it back to the cage and tried to slip him in. Nothing doing. He either wasn't finished exploring, or he was so scared he couldn't let go of the basket, because he was clinging to the side and NOT being "slipped in". And I was, frankly, scared to put my hand in there and nudge him. He's got quite the quick little set of chompers. I couldn't figure how to get the little booger in there before his cagemate heard of all there is to explore and decided to go on his own expedition. Thankfully, before the other hamster took off and before I figured anything out, hamster #1, Pepsi by name,  decided to drop into his cage.
Then I went to pick up the baby we woke up in the girls' room before she wakes up the others, hoping to salvage at least some of my morning quiet time, and took her upstairs with me to get ready.
She and I were back down in time to be at the door to wave goodbye to "Papa" as he left for work... oh, wait, why is he not leaving?
Here he is at the door.  Oh, I see. When the children cleaned out the van yesterday, the last one out forgot to close the door. That means that the interior lights  burning all night drained the battery. That means that I won't be able to get to the appointment I have this afternoon unless he stays here a little longer to jump our van with his work van.
Happily, that went smoothly and the van started right up after a few minutes of charging, while Tabitha had fun crumbling her saltines on the kitchen floor.
While we were waiting on the van to charge enough to try starting, Jeff noticed that in the blur of evening chores last night, someone, or more accurately everyone, forgot to take the running-over-full recycle can to the curb. Off he trundled it, like a gentleman, allowing me to look around and absorb the beautiful dewy morning and listen to the birds tell each other "Good Morning!"
Once the van started, I kissed him goodbye and told him I hoped his day was less hectic than his morning, to which he just laughed and rolled his eyes. He headed off to work (finally) and I came inside. Stepped over Tabitha's cracker-crumb pile, and looked at the clock. 6:30. Ahhh... still time to have some coffee and just chill before I need to wake up the children. So I poured a cup, put some hash brown patties in the oven, plopped some meat on the electric skillet, and fired up my cute little netbook to tell you all about my morning.
Because I've been composing post upon post to put here, and not publishing them yet, and I really want to publish something... The others will come.
After a morning like that, I want to make something special for Jeff for supper.
Oh, wait, I have that appointment this afternoon.
A-ha! I also have a crock-pot!
I think I'll go rummaging around and see what I can do with the crockpot that will use the things from this week's menu...
And you thought this would be about coffee... ;0)

1 comment:

  1. Hmmm, I really should have taken you up on
    That chicken noodle soup offer! :)