31st Jul2009

Establishing Roots

by Daenel

When my children entered school and started making friends, I swore that I would never move them because I wanted them to have something that I never had – roots. I grew up a military brat, my father was in the Army and my stepfather was in the Air Force. We became used to moving every 2 or 3 years until we moved to Italy.

When we settled at Aviano Air Base it felt like home. We never wanted to leave.
Recently, we were put in a position with my husband’s job where we thought we would be relocating. So for 6 weeks I’ve been watching my children slowly say “goodbye” to their friends and it has broken my heart.
We live in my husband’s hometown and everywhere we go, there’s an old classmate, an adult who knew him when…, teachers who are now teaching our children. His childhood friends are now the parents of our children’s friends.
This is something I never thought I’d have – running into people who knew me when I was a child. But thanks to the interwebs and Google, I have been able to find people that I lost contact with when my family relocated to the States. Today I was able to have lunch with one of those friends. Being able to talk to someone who understands what it was like to grow up in Europe surrounded by people from different religious and ethnic backgrounds – the uniting factor being our ties to the U.S. military, was amazing.
I realized as I drove home from lunch and reflected on the relationships my children have established and the ones that my husband has maintained, I do have roots. My roots have just been spread far and wide but they are just as strong as the ones my family have to this community.

30th Jul2009

Slippery Slopes

by Daenel

My biggest fear about being between jobs is that I’ll become lonely and fall into a pattern of sweatpants and ponytails. Now, before SAHMs the world over start yelling at me, let me explain…

For a little over five years I was a full time student who did not work outside of the home. This was before I became familiar with the Internet and learned about online communities for SAHMs. I just remember those days being some of the loneliest days – tending to four small children all day, attending classes at night and barely kissing my husband before he walked out the door to pull a 12 to 17 hour shift. Don’t get me wrong, I truly appreciate the opportunity that I had to watch my babies grow up. I honestly believe that is the reason my children and I have such a healthy and close relationship.

But after years of getting up at 5:45 AM, getting dressed and doing my make up because I have some place to go, I worry that I’ll slip into sweats and pony tails. *shudder* In fact, I’m sitting here right now with my hair pulled back….At least I’m wearing make up, jeans and a t-shirt. No sweats. Yet. Actually, let me fix that right now so it doesn’t happen…*tossing frumpy* I feel better now.

Anyway, my plan for the day consists of making sure the slumber party that started at 5:30 PM yesterday continues to run smoothly until 3:30ish PM today. First lesson, slumber parties work better on weekends when working parents can pick their kids up before noon. I am tired – the girls did not go to sleep until after 1:30 this morning.

I do have another goal – try to find something I can do from home.

But, right now, I need coffee.

29th Jul2009

And So It Begins

by Daenel

Yesterday was my last day at my job as the University Archivist/Reference Librarian at Misericordia University. I had worked there for just over a year and had developed many wonderful relationships with students, faculty, staff and community members. I resigned my position to to follow my husband as he explored new career opportunities. This has left me in the position of trying to navigate the wonderful world of unemployment during a time when the economy is not particularly cooperative with those who are job hunting. So I have decided to take this time to figure out who I am and what I want to be when I grow up.

I invite you to join me on this journey and share your joys and trials with me.

29th Jul2009

On the Table

by Daenel

My husband did not marry me for my cooking skills, ’cause when we first got married I couldn’t cook. No, you don’t understand, I lived in my apartment for six months before I even bothered to turn on the stove. I lived down the street from Popeyes and I had a crawfish shack around the corner, what more could a girl want?

For almost eight years my family survived off what barely passed as edible food. I cringe when I think about the stuff I served them…why didn’t someone step in and help a sista out?

Then one day my husband bought me a beautiful house and made me so incredibly happy that I was practically floating. With the house came the power to cook…Not really, but it honestly felt like I woke up the next morning with skills.

Now I don’t consider myself a chef, but I do have fun trying new stuff and playing in the kitchen, so I thought it’d be fun to start sharing my recipes and my pictures.

On the Table
Meatloaf Mice
Menu Plan Monday
Yummy Pictures
Asparagus Alla Paper Bag (courtesy of my friend at Bell’alimento)
Cast Iron Skillet Cornbread
Cornish Hens with Apricot Glaze, Stuffing and Green Beans
Creamy Nine Bean Soup
Eggplant Lasagna
Fish, Sausage and Shrimp Chowder
Italian Wedding Soup and Polenta with Dried Tomatoes and Olive Sauce
Lemon Chicken with Pasta and Veggies
Orange Cranberry Tea Loaf
Pork Roast Stuffed with Spinach and Mashed Potatoes
Ribs, Asparagus and Pasta
Sausage and Peppers with Pasta
I like to give credit where credit is due. So if I use someone else’s recipe, I link back to them and if I use my own, I let you know.

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