Sunday, November 30, 2008

Another Day of Working Out

I am proud to say I got off my butt for the third day in a row!  Friday Sheldon and I went hiking/letterboxing, yesterday we went to the gym and I swam 50 laps, today we met at the gym and I worked hard on the treadmill.  I walked uphill for an hour, walking over 3 miles and burning 324 calories.  Feels good!  

It also feels good to be home.  I left Sheldon's after the gym yesterday and today I only went over to his house for a little while.  This is important because I'm not sticking around with a knot in my stomach waiting for him to shoo me out.  I'm leaving of my own volition, because I have other things to do at home.  I'm leaving him wanting more.  For probably the first time in our relationship I am letting him miss me.  This isn't a trick or a game I am playing, far from it, in fact it is just because I finally feel some confidence in where we stand, and how important I am in his life.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

The International Feast

It is the Saturday night after Thanksgiving, the traditional night of the International Feast.  Never heard of it?  Well if you were part of my extended family and friends you would know exactly what I am talking about.  Ten years or so ago I started a tradition that grew and grew and grew.  Then my marriage broke up and the tradition died with it.  It didn't have to die, I just didn't have the heart to do it the first year and haven't felt the need since then.  Today is the first time I have actually missed it.

The way it started is that my brother was visiting from Florida and my cousin was visiting from Colorado that first year.  Both my parents and my aunt and uncle are divorced so the two boys were gonna have 2 turkey dinners each.  I wanted to get all of us together but obviously I didn't want to serve another turkey dinner.  So I came up with the "anything but American food" idea.  Not that I don't like American food, I do...but I wanted a theme for my party and that seemed like a good one.  I only invited my grandmother, mother, sister, brother, dad, cousin and aunt that first year and they all came.  I told them that they could bring anything they wanted but it had to be from another country and then I gave them a list of possibilities, such as Swedish Meatballs.  I bought a sushi platter from my favorite sushi restaurant, a selection of imported cheeses and crackers from the grocery store, chicken kabobs and hummus from my favorite Afghan restaurant and a few other items.  My mom brought Danish ham rolls, my sister brought Spanish clementines etc.  The food was a hit and the party was fun.  

Later when I told my friends what I had done they all thought it was a fabulous idea and wanted to be invited the next year.  So, when November rolled around again I sent invitations out to a larger crowd.  Because I live close to the nations capital I also have lots of friends from other countries and most of us have lots of different nationalities in our family tree, so soon I had quite a menu with special items from Brazil, Ukraine, Italy and other countries.  That second year I went to a local flag store and bought the flags that represented the guests who were coming.  Now a new tradition was born and I continued to collect small flags and ornaments from as many countries as I could find to decorate the house.  One year I put my Christmas tree up before the party and decorated it with white lights and all the flags.  It was my International Tree and I loved it.  

At about this same time I was taking a Folklore class at GMU and we had to do a paper on a family tradition that we had started or witnessed, so of course I had the perfect topic.  Needless to say I got an A on that paper!!

The party grew and grew, the last year that we had it we actually rented a local hall that has a homey feel and a fireplace at either end.  We had a huge crowd that year and had tons of fun and tons of food.  

And marriage ended, I stopped celebrating Christmas altogether and I never had another International Feast.  Today I am thinking that it is time to revive the tradition.  I'm not sure if I will wait til next Thanksgiving or plan one sooner.  Have to think on that.  If I do it again, do you want to come???

I love Saturdays!

I just went to the gym.  I love my gym so much, but unfortunately I have to give up my membership because it is just too expensive.  I love it there though.  There is always a lap lane available and they don't close down the entire pool for swim team practices and swim meets like the county pool does.  Plus they have a steam room and sauna which I adore.  Today may have been my last free month ends on December 4th.  I made it worth my while though...I took Sheldon with me and he was impressed as well, and he doesn't impress easily!  He worked out upstairs while I swam laps.  50 laps thankyouverymuch!  Felt wonderful.  It so relaxes me and melts all my troubles away.  I still feel like working out some more today, so I may go for a bike ride this afternoon.  I had to get out of the pool because my head was starting to hurt from the changing pressure of being plunged in and out of the water for almost an hour.  My weight is down 3 pounds so I am happy with that and hoping the trend will continue.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Sarah's Famous Corn Casserole

Corn Casserole
1 can of creamed corn
1 can of regular corn, drained
1 stick of butter
1 cup of sour cream
1 box Jiffy Corn Bread Mix
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Place butter in a 9x13 pan and put pan in the oven to melt the butter while the oven heats up.  (You can do this separately, but this way you only dirty one dish!)  After butter is melted, add corn, sour cream, and corn bread mix.  Mix well.  Bake about 30-40 minutes, until golden brown and firm.  Remove from oven, sprinkle with mozzarella and bake another 5 minutes until the cheese melts.

Voila!  So easy!!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I was born...

So where do I start? What do you want to know? Everyone has a story. I was born a poor black wait, that was Steve Martin in "The Jerk". I was born and my family was poor but we were white. I was born in 1965 in Roanoke Virginia to two college students making their way in the world, in the 60's. My brother was born in 1970 and my sister didn't come along til 1980. We tease my Mom about how she had one each decade. People used to say that my sister must have been an accident but Mom would always cock her head to the side and say "Well, the truth is they were ALL accidents." So there you have it, I was an accident...but I don't think any of us would change that now. Today I am 43, divorced, mother of a 14 year old son who is the apple of my eye. I have a 6 year old miniature poodle who adores the very air I breathe, and a small condo that suits me perfectly. I live in the suburbs of Washington, DC and work just 4 blocks from the White House. I'm pretty sure you'll be learning a lot more about me in the days to come. It has been a long strange trip and everyone has a story.