Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Lent, Giving up Coffee, and Creating Monsters

Lent is upon us, and it has been nearly a week since we have begun our annual fasting.  Not being Catholics, nor being raised that way, we do not do Lent the way true Catholics do.  We find something that would be tantamount to a sacrifice to give up, something that usually makes everyone cringe at the thought.  This year has been no exception.

But, as the title might lead you to believe, what I chose to fast is not coffee.  I did, once.  And it didn't really seem like such a big deal.  I had been thinking that it might be time for me to say farewell to my morning coffees; I have never drunk it because I needed the caffeine anyway.  I don't like the idea of doing something "just because;" the only thing worse is having an addiction.  I'm old enough (or secure enough with myself) now that I don't want anything in my life that hasn't been examined and tested, no exceptions.  Not even my morning coffee.

I would like to say that I came to this decision by way of divine revelation, or because I decided to conduct some scientifically sound experiment.  That might make this sound so much more important.  Rather, I just kind of fell into the decision.  A couple mornings in a row, while reading and working on this blog, I was in the mood for tea.  So, I had a few cups.  Never missed my coffee.  Like I said before, I never drank it because I "had to have it" anyway.  However, after those mornings, I decided that I would make some coffee.  It just sounded good.

Both times (with the tea and with the coffee) I had my cups before I ate anything.

With the tea, my stomach never got upset, I never got grumpy, and when I did get hungry, I just felt hungry.  I never felt groggy, sleepy, grouchy, or like my blood sugar had dipped so much that I wanted to bite off my children's heads.  When I had the coffee, the exact opposite thing had happened.

Now, don't get me wrong.  I had drunk a cup of coffee the night before at a church function, and nothing happened.  It was late in the evening.  I never had an upset stomach, never got grouchy, anything.  But, first thing in the morning, me and coffee - not a good thing.  So, from now on, for me, it's going to be tea for my morning drink.

As for creating monsters:

When I decided to start this project, I went through all my recipes, organizing them into actual meals, and then I divided up all those meals among the remaining months of the year, and made out a checklist for each month.  From those lists, I have let my family pick what we would eat each week.  This week, it was The Bug's turn.  He picked out his meals, not knowing what he was picking because the list was written in cursive and he still has a bit of a hard time deciphering it (which is a euphemism for - he didn't really feel like trying to figure out what the words said).  I was about to give him a hard time for this when he approached me with a cookbook of his own.

"Look Mom," he said, "since you've been working on this project and cooking and stuff, I thought you might like to try to make one of the recipes out of this book.  I found it at the library, and thought we could make some of the stuff together."

The book - a cookbook he found in the kids' section of the library - is called "Just Desserts: and other treats for kids to make" by Marilyn Linton.  The recipe he and I will be making together:  Candy Cookies.

Along with the Candy Cookies, I will also be making BBQ Mini Meatloaves and Mashed Potatoes Ole,  Tex Mex Chicken Bake, and Quiche for Lunch (don't know why that's the title).  This last one, I can tell you, is not being thought of favorably!  So, instead of a full recipe, I have decided that I will make a smaller version, and will spare everyone the torture.  LOL!!  Or maybe I won't because I like quiche.  We'll see!

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