Rituals…

LOCATION:  In our tiny house in Retama Village, in Mission, Texas
WEATHER:  Record-breaking heat – high 102.  Sunny.  Miserable

We don’t have many Easter rituals in our family.  When I was young, I was the church organist, so I had to get up early to play at the Sunrise service.  My mother was a terrible cook, so we never had anything special for Easter dinner.  The church thing was interesting….the town where I grew up was tiny – about 300 people.  The congregations of the 2 churches could not afford a minister’s salary each, so the 2 churches  shared one.  We rotated Sunday services between the 2 churches.  The only difference I could tell between the 2 is the way we recited The Lord’s Prayer.  Since we rotated, I played the organ every other week.  The little old ladies would give me the evil eye when I tried to jazz up some of the hymns. 

When our daughters were young, we did not want them to eat a lot of chocolate, and besides, they were not real fans of chocolate.  So, the Easter bunny left plastic eggs filled with coins for the girls.  That’s about it for Easter.

We do have Sunday rituals – CBS Sunday Morning is one of the only good shows left on regular commercial TV.  We watch it as often as we can while we are eating Sunday breakfast prepared by George.  It is always eggs (the preparation method can vary), bacon (for George), and grits.  I had never tasted grits until I met George.  His are better than most, as he cooks the grits in chicken broth, adds cream cheese and hot sauce. 

Another Sunday ritual is 60 Minutes in the evening, another remaining good show.  Now it is followed by Call The Midwife, my favorite show of all times, on PBS. 

Speaking of breakfasts (was I speaking of breakfast?), we don’t do anything too spectacular.  We usually have a piece of fruit and some cereal – hot oatmeal for George; cold, raw oatmeal mixed with cereal for me.  We usually use almond or soy milk, as it has more calcium, is lower in calories, and lasts longer. It also comes in the rectangular box with a screw top which fits better into our Airstream refrigerator when we are on the road.   Occasionally we have toast with cream cheese/smoked salmon/capers.  We swapped a high-calorie bagel (which we cannot get here anyway) with a low-calorie piece of toast.  A specialty breakfast, if we have a good avocado on hand, is to make an avocado spread for toast.  About every 3 days we have an egg, prepared in different ways. 

One of the best purchases George has ever made in a garage sale was this egg poacher….. was 50 cents but he bargained it down to a quarter.  When we travel in the Airstream, this is one of the gadgets I take with me.  You just pop an egg into this, with a tiny bit of fat (cheese or bacon or butter) and microwave it for about 30 seconds.  Perfect results every time!  Easy cleanup.

Today was a lazy day.  Being Sunday, there weren’t any classes.  George went for a bike ride followed by a dip in the pool.  I couldn’t make myself go out into the glaring heat.  While we were suffering from 102 temps with no breeze here, our friends and daughter in Rochester were experiencing 10 inches of snow today!

DINNER:  I wanted to do ham, but did not want to just eat a chunk of ham meat.  I found a nice-sounding ham and vegetable stew in the British vegetable cookbook I have been enjoying.  Besides the ham, it included carrots, celery, onion, leek, and green peas.  It called for fresh mint at the end of the cooking, which I plucked from my flower pot.  Side was a crunchy French baguette – the take and bake kind.

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