Tuesday, December 7

Treasures from the Grandmas

This last Tuesday didn't start out so good.

First a note to self (and for each of you in case you might be interested):  When leaving up the "Harvest Display" outside the front door through Thanksgiving weekend, be sure that temps are above freezing if planning to puree pumpkins for food preservation purposes.

I had several of these beauties to preserve (free from my parents garden, no less):

and although they are not pie pumpkins, when pureed in the food processor, I have found they work just fine. 

We have had some very cold weather here, and needless to say, my pumpkins froze.  Solid.  Although I had already preserved several of the pumpkins, there were several more outside that I hadn't got to.  So I brought in one of the said frozen pumpkins and set it in the sink to thaw so I could puree it.   

It took 12 + hours to thaw.  Biggest unintentional ice cube I've ever seen.  

(The frozen pumpkin was soft when it thawed, so I just pureed it--I didn't see a need to bake to soften it up.  That's my silver lining.)

Soooo, back to this last Tuesday morning.  I got up in the morning to my thawed pumpkin sitting in the kitchen sink.  I cut it in half to start the pureeing process and pumpkin juice started spilling out.  I quickly moved the pumpkin over to the sink to let in drain and mopped up the mess that already spilled out.  I turned around to grab a spoon out of my utensil crock and I glanced over at the pumpkin to make sure it wasn't still spilling over--and I kept pulling on the spoon to get it out of the crock.  In my carelessness, I knocked over the crock, which was near the edge of the counter.  The crock crashed to floor and broke.   I have Fiestaware.  They like to retire their colors every so often.  My crock was the retired Rose.  I cried.  Literally.

Meanwhile, as I was up to my elbows in pumpkin, the Hubs was searching for my advent calendar.  This isn't just any Advent calendar either, it's one that my Mom made for me when I was about five or six.  Prior to moving last year, I remember avoiding packing it, because I wasn't quite sure what to do with it/how to pack it.  It was folded up and wrapped in several (clean) white garbage bags and we had been searching for it for several weeks.  Closets, dressers, boxes in closets, cabinets--neither of us could find it.  And I was really starting to get worried.  I knew I wouldn't have gotten rid of it, but it was no where to be found.  And my imagination was running wild--"What if someone who helped us move threw it away?"  It was in a trash bag after all--I was stressing out with all the possible what ifs.  Plus, it was November 30 and the countdown for  the 25 days til Christmas started the next day and I didn't want to have to confuse Peanut with putting up more than one ornament per day.

Consistency is vital with a two year old.  

The Hubby found a long tall box underneath our basement stairs and asked if it could be in there.  "No," I said, "That was the box I used (and am saving) for packing the lamps."  Our garage is literally full from floor to ceiling with stuff.  And my dear, sweet husband proceeded to spend three hours going through boxes trying to find the advent calendar.  In between pumpkin preserving and watching the Peanut, I would go downstairs to the cold garage and check on him and his progress--to see if he found it.  (Although if he had found it, he would have brought it upstairs immediately to show me, so checking on him was silly--but I was anxious.)  But still nothing.  Nada.  He couldn't find it.

So he started shoveling snow.  And I went outside to ask him yet again if he had found it.  Nope.  He couldn't find it.  So I went upstairs with a sinking feeling--he had looked everywhere.  It was gone.  

But then, about 20 minutes later, I heard him come up the stairs.  I turned around and there he was with the calendar in his hands and a smirk on his face.  He looked torn between either strangling me or hugging me.   I was SO excited, "Where was it?" I asked.

"In the long, tall box you swore it wasn't in," he replied, "I don't know why I didn't check there first--oh yeah I do.  Because you said it wasn't in there."

Now after all that effort, I would have certainly fessed up if I had placed it in there.  But even after him telling me that's where he found it, I didn't remember putting it there.  I truly didn't.  Then that's when he admitted, "You know, I think I was the one who put it in that box when I was organizing the basement after we moved."

Hmm.  Well, that made me feel a little better. 

But it's quite the calendar, don't you think?  Perfect to pass down to my little Peanut.  And it's in pretty darn good shape for being 25 years old.  Of course, my Mom does do excellent work.  Have I mentioned that before?

And in between pumpkin preserving, Peanut watching, and Operation Advent Calendar monitoring, I was also googling Rose Fiestaware.  I couldn't find anything except for the one I happened to find on eBay, but I've only ever purchased "Buy Now" items--I've never bid on anything before.  That said, I also knew that you shouldn't bid on something until right when the auction is ending.  I emailed the seller and asked if I could purchase the crock immediately for $10 over her asking price.  After several hours, I finally heard back from her and she said, "Sure, I could do that--but you better purchase it soon, because there are five other bidders watching the item."  I went right on and purchased it--NOT an expense I was planning on, but I am thankful nonetheless that I was able to replace it. 

Lastly, our Peanut also has quite a little treasure from her other Grandma that she received last week.  There's a story to go with this one as well.  Turns out that when Hubs little brother was about Peanut's age, my mother-in-law was at a fabric store and they had some pre-printed  fabric nativity patterns on bolts.  She thought it would be perfect for those little inquiring hands.  Typically nativity sets are set far out of reach for little ones because the nativities can break.  She purchased two sets--one to make for Hubs little brother (who is now in his late twenties) and one for her toddler aged Sunday school class.  Ah, the best of intentions--my mom is a sewer too--isn't there a saying that she who dies with the most fabric, wins?  Anyhow, fast forward 25 years later and she came across the fabric, still in the bag.  Obviously it was too late for Hub's little brother to enjoy, but now she has grandbabies that would thoroughly enjoy the plush nativity.  So she whipped one up and sent it for the Peanut to enjoy during the Christmas season.  And enjoy it, she has.

Peanut knows each of the individuals involved--Baby Jesus, Mommy {Mary}, Daddy {Joseph}, the shepherds and Wise Men.  When Peanut lays Jesus in the manger, she tells me, "No crying."  We've been singing Away in a Manger to her, and as the song goes-- "no crying He makes."  It's pretty precious--especially since the Peanut often times seems so distracted when we tell her the Christmas story or sing Away in a Manger to her.  She is such a busy little girl, but it turns out--she's getting a whole lot more than we realize. 

{Insert sigh of contentment here}

The day that started out terribly definitely ended on a high note.

1 comment:

Ms. Kiki said...

(I think this is my first post on your blog, but I read it often - love it! :) )

It's nice to read posts like this, with the "bad" stuff in there too. You always seem so on the ball and while I don't know you in person, I look up to you in the way you do so many things. (The menu planning, good budgeting, just the "domesticity" of it all) So it makes me feel good to know that you have those rough mornings too :) I'm glad it all worked out though! And check eBay, maybe they have the Fiestaware crock?

Thanks for sharing! And I love the Advent calendar. I have the one my mom made when I was little, too. Those things mean so much.

Happy Holidays!


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