Yes, I’m still writing about how I’ve been in shock this past month over our unexpected move. However, I think positivity is winning the more settled I get things. In reality, the change is a good thing. I’ve been overly whiny about it because it wasn’t my idea and I probably have a lot of control issues.
Anyway, this past week I committed to battling the hot spots at our new house. You know, those places in your house that get piled up with stuff and you don’t know what is in that pile or how it got there. At least in the new house I know how it got there, because as I unpacked it it was too small, too odd, or too random, it ended up on the kitchen counter, my desk or in a pile in my craft room. Nothing is the same, so I have to rethink placement of everything.
I spent Tuesday shoveling off my kitchen island. Well, kind of an island, it’s really the open side in the U shape of the kitchen. It’s an excellent location for preparing meals, and if anyone were so inclined they could sit on the other side on the bar stools and talk to me while I cooked. So far only my Florida friend has taken advantage of the situation, but maybe that’s because I haven’t really had it clear up until now.
Tuesday evening I was preparing one of our traditional Thanksgiving leftovers, Cranberry Turkey Ring. It’s a Pampered Chef recipe from my consulting days. There I was cooking away, enjoying all the space I had, not only compared with my old kitchen, but also feeling proud of my accomplishment at finally unearthing the counter space. I was distracted by the glow of pride and the dried cranberries. They were out of date (the cranberries, not my pride) and a bit hard (again the cranberries). I wondered if I should have soaked them in water before I added them, but kept building the ring and after I “braided” the croissants over the filling, I realized I forgot the cheese.
The last time I forgot the cheese was during a Pampered Chef demonstration where I made a big deal out of the cheese grater. That day we just sprinkled it over the top, but the other day, there the cheese sat in the tank, ready to use. I figured since it wasn’t for company, and for the most part it was a recipe my family would eat however it looked, I hastily unbraided it, scooped all the filling out with my hands, threw it back in the bowl, added the cheese, and hand mixed it.
I was in deep by then, so I manhandled the filling back onto the breading and rebraided it. Let’s just say it wasn’t pretty, kind of like one of those Pinterest pictures where people try to duplicate the professional looking posts and come out with a redneck version. There was a brief moment when I considered picking all the cranberries out and reconstituting them. I love my family, but the mess of adding the cheese was the extent of my commitment to them.
Once the first timer went off, it looked beautiful and I regretted ordering another oven to be delivered in a couple weeks. But it wasn’t done. I put it in for another 10 minutes and it still wasn’t done. After its second overtime play, it was finally baked through. It looked a bit rough around the edges but the cranberries plumped up and it tasted just fine.
Pinterest has nothing on me.
Gretchen Leigh is a stay-at-home mom who lives in a community near you. You can read more of her writing on her website livingwithgleigh.com, or follow her on Facebook at “Living with Gleigh by Gretchen Leigh. Her column is always available at maplevalleyreporter.com under the Life section.