Sunday, March 25, 2018

Visiting Family on Sunday

I hope that those who celebrate Palm Sunday had a special day today. 

I was able to go to the rosary gathering, yesterday, after all, and didn't have to drive, as cousin called later, after I had posted my blog post, yesterday, and said she had been able to talk her daughter into driving us.  I enjoyed the gathering and seeing everyone there.  I got home around 11:30 p.m., video chatted with my daughter till around 12:30 a.m., and then, went to bed around 1:30 a.m.

Daughter went grocery shopping at the dollar store, yesterday:

Grocery Haul Part 1
Sara Lee honey wheat bread, spinach, Oscar Mayer applewood smoked uncured ham cold cuts, Mexican guavas, 2 packs blueberries, orange cauliflower, hass avocados, 2 mangos, 4 plantains.

Grocery Haul Part 2
2 cans coconut milk, 5 cans mackerel, 6 cans garbanzo beans, vanilla extract 3 ramen bowl (nong shim, tonkotsu, and sukiyaki flavors), teriyaki flavored dry roasted seaweed, taro chips, 2 boxes of ginger tea.  She said she stocked up on the cans of mackerel and garbanzo beans because they don't always have them in stock.

Today, she cooked:

Daughter's Cooking

She said she made: gingerbread chickpeas, sauted plantains, butter garlic basil cauliflower rice, spinach spaghetti and butternut squash pasta with meatballs and Thai yellow curry sauce, sweet and spicy roasted orange cauliflower, maple roasted yams with pecans, ranch chickpeas, kabocha soup, mackerel curry.  She thinks she has cooked enough food for 2 weeks!  My goodness!  She says she prefers to spend 2 hours cooking, once a week, and having to wash one set of pots and pans, rather than cook daily and wash pots and pans every day!  It all looks good, doesn't it?  

Today, I slept in again and woke up around 10:30 a.m.  I had a relaxed morning.  It was a partly cloudy day and on the cool side, but no rain.  Neighbor T called around 11:30 a.m. and we chatted a bit.

Later, in the afternoon, I went to see my Aunt T, who is now in a nursing home after falling and being in hospital for observation.  Aunt T is the widow of one of my uncles who was my mother's younger brother.  I had asked my cousin V (who is Aunt T's daughter) at yesterday's rosary gathering, if I could come to her place and go with her to the nursing home and she had said yes.  When I asked what time would be best, she said any time.   Today, I called her around 1:00 p.m. and asked if 3:00 p.m. would be good and what would Aunt like to have.  Cousin said 3:00 p.m. would be fine, or even 2:30 p.m., as she wanted to go to church at 5:00 p.m., and to bring some Sri Lankan food, as Aunt doesn't much care for the food at the nursing home.

So, I cooked rice, a fish curry (using canned mackerel - just like my daughter did!), sauted/curried cabbage, and a lentil curry (dhal).  I didn't take any pictures, though!  I fear my cooking pales in comparison to my daughter's!  LOL.  Then, I served two plates of food - one for Aunt and one for Cousin.  I used microwave safe containers with covers that some carry out food had come in; they are considered as "disposable", but I wash and save them for just such purposes.  This way, the recipients don't have to worry about returning the containers.

I was at my cousin's house at exactly 2:30 p.m.  (takes about 20 minutes to get there).  We visited Aunt and stayed there for about half an hour.  Then, we went back to cousin's house and had a cup of tea.  While I was there, cousin's daughter face timed her from New York where she lives with her husband and son and when she knew that I was visiting cousin, she showed me that the quilt I had made was being used as a play mat for her son.  She said that everyone who visits admires the quilt.  I was glad to see that the gift I made (with things I had on hand) is something useful.    

After I came home, I aired the house so it doesn't smell of fish curry, did the dishes (washed some by hand and the rest in the dishwasher), wiped down the kitchen counters and stove top (I am a messy cook!), put away the rest of the food I cooked, as I cooked a little extra so there would be some for me for the week as well, and ate some leftover pancakes (from yesterday) with some of the fish curry for a late lunch/early dinner.  After that, it got cold, so I closed the windows and turned on the heater!  

Today, I am grateful for:
- Being able to visit Aunt and cousin
- My turn to cook and take food to others
- Knowing that cousin's daughter is using the baby quilt I made
- Being able to produce a meal using pantry/fridge/freezer items 
- A safe drive to cousin's house and back

Plans for tomorrow (I have the day off work) include grocery shopping, paperwork, and house cleaning.

How was your Sunday?  What are your plans for the upcoming week?


  1. I'm sure Aunt T appreciated your visit and the food. Homemade is so much nicer.
    Your daughter's cooking looks delicious. X

    1. Jules, I hope she enjoyed the food (she was keeping it for dinner, she said); she thanked me for coming to see her, although, according to cousin, she doesn't lack for visitors. Even so, a nursing home isn't a very pleasant place and she's looking forward to being home, again.

  2. What I get from reading your post today is that your day was a good day involving food and family. Doesn't get much better than that.

    1. You are quite right, Live and Learn. Food and family - it's a good combination. :)

  3. I always wondered what you did with the mackerel. Good thing you were able to air out the house. Your daughter has some very good habits and I think cooks like you. For someone who has always eaten Sri Lankan food it must be hard to adjust to what your aunt is served.

    Sunday after church service we returned a cell phone that we had a new battery put in for our grandson. Daughter and grandson were not home but gone on a climbing weekend. Son-in-law and our other grandson were at their church service. Enjoyed watching the latest Call the Midwife on PBS in the evening.

    Busy week ahead as I must get ready for Easter Sunday company. I now am at the age where I find it works better if I pace myself with the various jobs. Waiting for hubby to put the extra leaf in the dining room table so I can set it. Haven't quite made my mind up about what to serve for dessert.

    1. Both daughter and I like the canned mackerel curry. With the addition of onions, tomatoes, half a can of coconut milk, curry powder, green chilies, curry leaves, etc., it makes a very nice curry. I keep sliced onions and tomatoes in the freezer, along with green chilies; the curry leaves are picked fresh from the garden as needed (can freeze or dry them, as well). So, I usually have the ingredients I need to make this curry at a moment's notice.

      Aunt usually enjoys things like sandwiches from Subway, but, apparently, she was missing rice and curries.

      Sounds like you had a nice day, yesterday.

      Yes, good idea to get things done, a little at a time, when preparing for a big event. Maybe a cake, some fresh fruit, and ice cream for dessert? Or a pie?

      I don't have anything planned for Easter. Daughter will not be coming down that weekend, so we'll probably not do anything to celebrate. When she was little, the Easter Bunny used to hide eggs for her to find, and leave a little trail of glitter to make it easier. :D She loved it!

  4. Your daughter is one smart lady. I am surprised though that it only took 2 hours to cook up all those different dishes. It took me two hours just to chop and cook up vegetables and take the meat off bones this morning. She must be extremely organized. I do enjoy the fact that cooking and washing up once sure trumps having to do it every day of the week. It's a great lesson, that I am sure she learned from her mother.
    So very thoughtful to cook a Sri Lankan meal for your aunt and take it with you on the visit. I am sure it was appreciated immensely. I hope she will be able to return home soon.
    Also, wasn't it lovely to learn that the quilt was so well received and is still being loved. It makes all the work that went into it, so worth it.

    1. Thanks, Susan; yes, she has seen me prepare several main dishes for the week, and enough rice or pasta and vegetables for at least a couple of days, when I cook. I, too, used to grocery shop on Saturdays (often after I've dropped her off at dance classes) and cook on Sundays for the week. :) She said she put all the things that needed roasting (the cauliflower, yams, chickpeas) in the oven at the same time. So, saved some time, there.

      I was very pleased to know that the quilt was being used. Cousin had told me so, and forwarded me some pictures of her grandson on the quilt, but it was nice to see it for myself (after all, they could have just put the baby on the quilt for the picture!). Aunt might be at the nursing home for another week, according to cousin. She and her sister will be meeting with the doctors, later this week.

  5. I'm glad you had a ride to the prayer meeting. Sometimes it is so nice just to be a passenger, isn't it?

    I'm so impressed with your daughter's cooking up a storm with enough prepared for many future meals. It all looks delicious.

    1. Thank you, Bushlady. It was nice to be driven. :)

      I'm impressed by her cooking, myself! She finds recipes online and tries them out. Sometimes, she says, they don't turn out the way she imagined they would, but she still eats them because she bought the stuff and cooked it. :)

  6. That food looks amazing. Your daughter is a talented cook (and I'm sure she learned it from someone...) I'm sure your Aunt must have been grateful for familiar food. It's wonderful how gifts from the heart - like the home cooked food and the quilt - make such a positive difference. LM x

    1. Thank you, Lyssa. She goes online and finds recipes to try. I forwarded her the link to your no knead bread rolls (with mayonnaise) and she tried them out, too. :)


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