Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Cooler Weather and More Rain

As I've said before - it is December and we have lots of rain.  Not a good time of year for tourists to visit the island but all of us who live here, we get out and about nonetheless because this is a time of celebrating.

First, with cooler weather I had to make the traditional pot of Chili and Mike's favorite, crunchy bread....at least that is what he calls my French Bread when I toast slices to have with a meal.


Mmmm, mmmm, good.  I make French Bread at least 3 times a month and have a wonderful recipe which is simple and fast.  HOWEVER, one is advised to mix the warm water, yeast and sugar and let it sit and then mix in one cup of flour before adding the rest of the flour and 2 teaspoons of salt.  Well, about twice now I’ve forgotten the salt!  The bread turns out nice but is rather bland.  I highlighted the addition of the salt on my recipe card but, unfortunately, on this particular day I used the newly re-typed recipe which did not have the salt highlighted!  You guessed it - I forgot the salt.  And the bread came out looking so beautiful too.  I fixed that by slathering it with garlic/parsley butter and broiling slices for a few minutes.  Where there is a will there is a way.
Next, I apologize for not reporting on one more news item in my last blog.  At the time I sat and sat and tried to remember what I was forgetting but alas it never jumped into my brain until yesterday!  What I meant to tell people was that over two weeks ago Sue Sikaffy was out sick from her store and when we inquired as to her whereabouts we were told she had experienced high blood pressure and was being checked out.  We later discovered that she had experienced this increase due to stress over the fact that she had learned her husband had an incident with his heart.  Armando works on a boat servicing other ships off the coast of either Africa or the Middle East (I’m not quite clear on where he is working).  Several of the men on the island have taken jobs on oil rigs or work on service boats in the Atlantic and are away from home from 3 to 6 months.  They come home for about a month R&R and return to work another stretch.  Armando was on the job when he experienced chest pains (or something similar - not fully informed as to his symptoms).  They took him somewhere (and I don’t know that either) for medical attention where they discovered two of his arteries were clogged.  They inserted a balloon device and cleared the clog and sent him home for a month.  He is now well and resting and was told to start a diet and watch his cholesterol.  Armando, we are glad you are well and hope that you can deal with this new lifestyle change!

Next, I mentioned in my Christmas blog that I had made several other presents but could not post the photos as the people receiving them would know what they were getting.  But I can now post a few of the things I distributed at Christmas to friends.  Unfortunately, and not to bore you, I forgot to take a photo of two items and so you are not subjected to having to view even more things!

The following were tea light flowers I made for several of the girls that work at our local grocery store and are so helpful all year.  The coasters were to be made to use at the bar at Manati.  I love the bright colors and so did the recipient.


This is a bag to hold plastic bags!  You put in your bags at the top and pull them out the bottom.  I have done the before and sewed them from material.  However, I found this pattern which was so elegant that I had to make it up.  I gave it to the person with a bottle of wine as it makes a nice gift bag for that too!   

This is a slipper sock I started for my husband but it turned out to be too large so I used it as a Christmas sock to put his gifts in! 

This is a book bag but will be used as a small purse by the recipient of this gift.

These are slippers for my friend in Florida who needs something warm to keep her toes comfortable in the winter!

So, I guess I am caught up now.  I might add that I forgot to make Christmas cookies for my husband this year.  His favorite are Pecan Sandies which are really melt in your mouth kind of cookies that I've made for years.  I was able to make one batch (40 cookies) as I only had 1 cup of butter left in my refrigerator.  In spite of the "limitation" on his intake of cookies, he was very happy that I finally remembered and made him his cookies!  Also made a couple loaves of garlic flavored bread to go with them.  So, we have chili, french bread, garlic bread and cookies - and who says good food here is hard to come by?

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