Tuesday, May 30, 2006

I could get used to nothingness...

This holiday weekend, we did nothing of importance. It was heavenly.

We took Alex swimming yesterday, which he loves. There’s a place by our house with a nice, big rock that slopes gradually into the water. It makes a perfect doggy launching pad. After his first dip he became quite excited and started running in crazy circles. What is it with dogs and water? All the kayakers and canoers paddling by got a big kick out of him. When a small motorboat passed by Alex jumped at the waves that lapped against the rock, puzzled when they vanished from between his paws.


It was awfully cute.

Yesterday evening our street had a rockin’ Memorial Day picnic. Anyone can do it! Here’s how:

1) Debate endlessly about which day to have it. Recall Bob Ryan’s weather forecast for the weekend.

2) Call Bob Ryan names for a while.

3) Get tired of discussion and pick Monday, since maybe the neighborhood association will have CUT THE DAMN GRASS by then.

4) Make flyers and distribute to neighbors.

5) Notice later that the flyers announce a neighborhood picnic for Monday, Mey 29.

6) Wonder if anyone else will notice.

7) Yes. Everyone will notice.

8) Make new flyers and distribute to neighbors.

9) Make homemade empanadillas stuffed with spinach, raisins, and pine nuts.

10) Haul grill through house to sidewalk.

11) Fill cooler with ice and cans of Yuengling.

12) Set up one folding table, which will quickly get buried under empanadillas, stuffed grape leaves, potato salad, blueberry pies and huge bottles of red wine.

13) Set up two more tables, also destined for food landslides.

14) Neighbor Bill will bring out his lawnmower since the neighborhood association has not CUT THE DAMN GRASS and it’s taller than your average toddler.

15) Praise Bill and crown him Memorial Day King.

16) Fire up the grill.

17) Chat with neighbors. Realize that we live with families from Korea, Peru, Egypt, and Iran.

18) Marvel at the diversity.

19) Hold neighbor’s adorable baby. Field 20 simultaneous questions about when you’re planning to have your own!

20) Laugh weakly as you tell everyone that you do have a baby. It's just that he's a dog.

21) Watch nervously as Jorge, your South American neighbor, tries one of your homemade empanadillas.

22) Blush and hide your face in your wine glass as he praises your cooking.

23) Share recipe with Internet:


Spinach Empanadillas:

Ingredients:

3 T. raisins
2 T. olive oil
1 lb fresh baby spinach, washed and chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup chopped pine nuts
12 oz. puff pastry
1 egg, beaten
Salt & pepper to taste

Soak raisins in warm water for 10 minutes. Chop roughly.

Heat the oil in a large pan, add the spinach, stir, then cover and cook over low heat for 2 minutes. Uncover, turn up the heat and let any liquid evaporate. Add the garlic and salt & pepper, stir 1 minute. Remove from the heat, add the raisins and pine nuts. Stir and cool.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. On a floured surface, roll out the pastry to a 1/8 inch thickness.

Using a pastry cutter, cut out 20 circles, 3-inches across, re-rolling the dough as necessary. Place about 2 teaspoons of the filling in the middle of each circle, then brush the edges with a little water. Fold over each circle, forming a half-moon shape and seal well, pressing the edges together with the back of a fork (do a good job with this so they don’t burst open as they’re baking).

Brush tops with egg. Place the empanadillas on a lightly greased baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes until golden. Serve warm, or eat one right out of the oven and burn the roof of your mouth like I did.

Can YOUR baby fetch sticks in the water?
Didn't think so.

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9 Comments:

Blogger Bearette24 said...

That looks good. And Alex is adorable as usual ;)

2:05 PM  
Blogger Roxanne said...

Yummm! And you have a very cute baby indeed. Phooie to all those nosey neighbors. I never have understood why that question always comes up. It's such a personal, touchy subject yet people still seem to think it's ok to prod.

So when are you going to adopt a second dog? I mean, you don't want Alex to be an only child do you? (That's the other annoying question that people seem to think it's ok to ask but is never really ok to ask.)

2:37 PM  
Blogger His suzy said...

Liz, it's okay not to have babies if you don't want to. I'm not going to be having any. ;)

I always love the pictures you post of Alex! It sounds like you had a good neighborhood picnic despite any weather, grass, table, or baby mishaps. :)

2:49 PM  
Blogger bdogg_mcgee said...

Sounds like a lot of fun! We spent our day driving back to Dallas....would rather have been at your place!

And I LOVE Yuengling beer--I had some when I was traveling up there around Christmas. I need to locate some so DH can try it....

3:05 PM  
Blogger Elsa said...

Alex looks sooooooo cute! I think dogs and water are like kids and water - they just seem to love it (except when its for bathtime!).

It sounds like your Memorial Day picnic was fun - even with all the planning.

And I know what you mean about getting the questions about having kids. I don't have kids and used to get asked all the time. I used to say the same thing - "yes, I have 2 kids, my dogs Joker and Casey". Ha ha. Now that I'm close to 40, people have stopped asking me - other than the occassional "do you have kids?" to which I respond "No" and they say "oh" which is always followed by akward silence.

8:12 PM  
Blogger Frema said...

What a great way to spend the day. :)

10:42 PM  
Blogger verniciousknids said...

I particularly loved steps 9 & 12 and I'm glad you posted step 23 :D

Alex is better than a baby, methinks!

11:12 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

I'm going to have to try that recipe.

And someday, Alex and Rowen are going to have to get together!

8:53 AM  
Blogger Carolyn said...

I was having troubles posting earlier.

Now that I can - Alex is cute.

My kids definitely can't fetch sticks.

My two dogs can. And my dogs, no matter how old they get, are always cute.

7:28 PM  

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