Thursday, March 30, 2006

Mom's Chicken and Dumplings

My mom was a fabulous cook.  She was one of those cooks who measured by a "pinch" of this and a "dab" of that. We were after her all the time for more precise measurements.  "How much, mom? How much?"  It's really hard to duplicate those pinch and dab recipes, so I really never tried to make her delicious chicken and dumplings.

My sister and I were down home a couple of weeks ago for some Papa time. Tracy came across multiple copies of mom's handwritten recipe with actual measurements. What a find!

Sometimes in the struggle of juggling work, baby, house, bills, school and just life alone...I miss my mom. She was the great encourager when it came to tackling life as it comes and making the most of every situation. "You can do it! I know you can!" Despite the petty criticisms most daughters endure with our moms, I always knew that if she believed in me, I would be ok!

It was one of those days; one of those weeks missing mom.  Then I remembered the recipe for chicken and dumplings. I pulled it out and in one hour, viola~ I have mom's homemade chicken and dumplings. Delicious! Not only did it make me feel closer to mom, but Gracie helped me cook. She's a quick study, learning the best part of cooking is stirring, then licking the spoon. She did a great job rolling out the dough and my fingers. It was a memory cherished and a memory made with my little girl. The dumplings were yummy.  They weren't quite as good as mom's, but we are on our way.  I talked to Tracy this week. Guess what she made over the weekend?  Yes, she made mom's chicken and dumplings.

So for those of you who want a good southern chicken and dumpling recipe, I am happy to share this one. No family secrets here! Mom loved to share her recipes and goodies with others. I plan to fix a batch for the neighbors soon. Enjoy!

Nellie's Chicken and Dumplings
In medium size bowl, beat 1 egg well. Add 1 cup chicken broth, 1 TBS melted butter or margarine and 1 1/4 tsp salt, mixing well. Gradually add 2 cups all purpose flour. Mix well. Dough will be stiff and sticky. Add more flour if needed. Divide into thirds. Roll out onto well floured surface to about 1/8 in thick. Cut into desired size, shape dumpling. Drop into 6-8 cups of HOT (boiling) chicken broth in large pot. Use fork to separate dumpling and keep them from sticking to each other while dropping into the pot. Leave on high heat until bubbly then turn down to low. Cover and cook until done. Add cooked, de-boned chicken to dumplings. Shortcut: use canned chicken broth. Uncooked dumplings can be frozen for future use. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Hold On

Ever hear a song that just moves you? Not just the kind that makes you smile inside & think "Oh, that's a nice one". Sometimes songs come along that feel like they are physically touching me. The kind that make me want to pray or cry or do something. Perhaps it has to do with being a worshipper. The element of music, though not necessary to worship, is often the vehicle that ushers us into the presence of the King. We have audience with Him in our praise. In our abandonment & ardent adoration, He meets us right where we are.

I was washing dishes yesterday, listening to Nicole Nordeman's Brave CD - as I've done dozens of times (put her on your must listen list). She is a worshipper as well, singing the heart of God. Not in a high & lofty manner, but in the "day in/day out reality of where we live" kind of way. Her song, HOLD ON, was playing & something inside me connected with those words. Love will find me regardless...You can put anything after that regardless. Fill in the blank. He will find you. Love will find you. Regardless of my strength to look for Him or reach for Him or move to where He is. He will find me. Love will find you.

HOLD ON by Nicole Nordeman 2005
It will find you at the bottom of a bottle
It will find you at the needle's end
It will find you when you beg and steal and borrow
It will follow you into a stranger's bed
It find you when they serve you with the papers
It will find you when the locks are changed again
It will find you when you've called in all your favors
It will meet you at the bridge's highest edge
So baby don't look down, it's a long way
The sun will come around to a new day
So hold on
love will find you
Hold on
He's right behind you now
Just turn around
And love will find you
It will find you when the doctor's head is shaking
It will find you in a boardroom, mostly dead
It will crawl into the foxhole where you're praying
It will curl up in your halfway empty bed
So baby don't believe that's it over
Maybe you can't see 'round the corner...
To hang between two thieves in the darkness
Love must believe that you're worth it
You're worth it
Hold on
love will find you
Hold on
He's right behind you now
Just turn around
And love will find you

Monday, March 27, 2006


Ok - it's over. The exam is over without a minute to spare. In fact, I think I went into overtime with the transcription portion. My professor is Gestapo for sure!

Thank God the Gracie girl went to bed early tonight. Uncle Bob plum wore her out today playing, dancing & carrying on like good uncles do. I love those visits~ Really, I am truly thankful for the love deposits made into her little life. I fully believe good things will grow from positive seeds sown into the hearts of our little ones. We must take care regarding what we plant in their heart garden. We are the caretaker while they're young anyway. What responsibility! That'll preach, eh? Or maybe I've heard it before in a sermon. Things just take on new meaning when you have one of your own. Anyway...thanks, ya'll, for loving on my little treasure - meine kleine schatze.

Gurnee Mills! Whew - that's some serious shopping. As I expected, baby clothes were the main attraction for our spending group. And purple clothes, at that. This little Emily baby of my neighbors, due in June, will be all lavendered up! We brought home 3 purple outfits - all very, very charming. Gracie Nasrin (translation - Rose) will be sporting a lovely Easter dress bedeckt with vintage cabbage roses. I have visons of her 2 year pictures in this dress. Can't wait for the photos & plan to share, but indeed dread the whole appointment "wait your turn & then wait some more" experience JC Penney delivers without fail.

Anyway....Gurnee Mills - keep up, people! We visited Bass Pro shop - my 1st visit. My mom would be proud. In fact, I called the family to share the experience & even sent a pic via T-Mobile of Grace & the big fish. She sure enjoyed the deer & fish. I was dreaming about a boat for someday....someday when I have my house by the lake...someday.

Grace got a new book "Mommy Loves Me" - just in case she forgets. Can't have enough books. Bought some scrapbook stuff. Oh, I've got paper now. Got the stickers. Got vellum sayings & ribbon & adhesive & whatnot! Now if they only carried free time at Archivers, I could do some serious scrappin. Once this XXXX class is over & once I get this special project finished for baby Emily...I'm going to put some cutie pictures on some pretty paper. :o) Let's go, P. Chris~

So, the shopping trip was good & the company kept was even better. We got our tank full at CLC on Sunday & here comes Monday. Ok, folks - G'night to you~ Until next time, tschuss!

Friday, March 24, 2006

While she's sleeping....

While she's sleeping...I should be working on my phonetics but instead I'm creating my Blogspot. It's one of my worst habits...delaying those things I dread by doing something else...anything else but... Of course, before I had high speed internet, I would resort to cleaning baseboards or organizing closets. Those things folks do when they don't want to do something they need to or must do. Now, I search eBay for stuff I don't need, check my friends' blogs, translate words/phrases into German, study the easy stuff, laundry, whatever. I'm putting off preparing for my looming phonetics exam. Ugh! I'm nearly hyperventilating as I type the very word "phonetics" - What is the IPA transcription of that word anyway? That's right, I need that special Pepper font to transcribe stuff. Sorry guys, I know you were dying to see the IPA in action.

Well, while I'm here, and it is good to be here...HELLO! I've been reading JenJen's blog for a couple of months. Before that, Singingole's site in Xanga & a bunch of her friends. My friend Randy is a blogger. It's time I get one of my own instead of just reading what everyone else has to say. Gee - one of my pastors even has his own blogspot not to mention the new radio spot! How cool is that? We've come a loooong way baby! Anyway, I've got the most clever friends and can't wait to read what they'll add to my musings! So welcome to my rambling place~

Aside from my dreaded exam this weekend~ Shopping Saturday @ Gurnee Mills with the neighbor friends. Don't you love it when God puts you next to good people and you become friends?? I am thankful. Nate will chase after Grace while Steph and I buy some baby clothes. Steph will get the BABY clothes. The Gracie girl isn't the baby anymore as she tells me now exactly what she wants. "I want candy...I want that one...I want Papa...I want milk...I want Monsters, Inc (the one & only movie she watches...don't boo me - I had to get some homework finished because I didn't do it while she was sleeping). Anyway, I love that she's talking so much now and the I wants are typical for this egocentric phase & just a snippit of her growing lexicon. More on that later...must study. Goodnight for now or Good Morning to you, my European friends~