Tag Archives: Mark

Six Word Adventure

Rocky Point walk. Carousel. Fellini’s pizza.

Ten Days, Nine Photos

And, now! Some vacation photos:

On our way into the Magic Kingdom

Felix meets Piglet at the Crystal Palace

Felix and I on the Magic Kingdom train-a self portrait

Felix's new Ears.

The view to Epcot from our balcony.

Felix and Mark in the pool

Family photo with Marlin and Nemo

Felix meets Mater at Hollywood Studios

Topiary Lightning McQueen and Mater

Bragging Rights

You’re invited to a Purim party/Hamantaschen bake-off.

While you have eaten your weight in Hamantaschen over the years, you’ve never actually made  the delicious little tri-cornered darlings yourself.

You go to Smitten Kitchen. You are, as always, rewarded.

You eschew traditional poppy seed filling in favor of lemon curd and Boysenberry jam.

You realize four hours before judging that you have neither the called-for lemon nor the ambition to go get one.

You swap in a clementine.

You bake up delicious Hamantaschen.

You win the bake-off!!!

You feel slightly like a fraud, since your ‘taschen are, like yourself, all Gentile.

But you still won.

You feel compelled to share the recipe you tweaked.

Brag Worthy Hamantaschen

Bragworthy Tiny ‘taschen
adapted from the Smitten Kitchen recipe

1 c. confectioners sugar
2 c. flour
1/4 c. white whole wheat flour
1/2 t. kosher salt
zest of 1 clementine
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temp., diced
2 eggs, separated
a splash of milk
lemon curd (I used Dickinson’s that I bought at Stop & Shop)
boysenberry jam (I used Trappist*, cause the monastary is near where I grew up.)

Bust out your food processor, plunk sugar through zest in and pulse it to blend. Your Small Sous Chef can help with the pulse button. Buttons, as we all know, are awesome. Now, get your button pusher to switch to On.

With the machine running, pour in your yolks and cubed butter and let it go until the dough comes together in a mass. Have your child stop the machine, then disappoint him by not allowing him to play with the wicked sharp blade remove the dough.

Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for an hour at least.

Roll the dough out less that 1/4″ thin. Have your Small Sous Chef help you cut 2 1/2″ rounds with the rim of a wineglass a cutter. Transfer your rounds to two parchment lined trays.

We yielded 4 dozen plus a small ball of raw dough for Mark to sample.

Now, fill half of them with approximately a teaspoon of lemon curd and half with approximately a teaspoon of jam. Mix your reserved eggwhite with a spash of milk. Brush the edges of the ‘taschen with this egg wash. Pinch the sides into three corners. Brush the tops and sides lightly with more egg wash.

Chill for 20 minutes while you preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

I baked mine for 15 minutes per tray, one tray at a time.

When they’ve cooled a little, transfer to a cooling rack.

Bring them to a bake-off and bring home your bragging rights!

*the irony is not lost on me

The Beginning of Everything

Carmen was playing on Boston Common.

Opera under the summer sky. I wanted to go. I invited him. We were new to each other. A few weeks of phone calls, emails, a first date that left me unsure. I liked him, but was that enough? I wasn’t prepared to release him back to the dating pool, but neither was I willing to dare myself to open up to the idea of him.

Looking back, I think my subconscious knew. Trust your gut. But at twenty-five you don’t always do that, especially where men are concerned.

I worked two blocks from the Common in those days, he lived a T stop away over the bridge. That much I knew, but we had only seen in each other in public space. Movie theatres, restaurants, bars.

He met me at work. He had a picnic and a blanket. I remained calm, but my insides swooned. Baguette, paté, cheese, but I was careful about what I ate. Later he would say that he wondered if I didn’t like the offerings. Au contraire.

We sat through the performance, we ate, we talked a little during the intermission. As we packed up to leave, I realized my cell phone was missing.

He crawled around in the grass looking for it, but it was gone. Not in my bag, not on the blanket, not in the grass. Gone.

In those days, losing my StarTac was like losing an iPhone.

I was a mess. I couldn’t afford a new one, and again, in those days, someone else having my phone meant extra minutes and charges and oh, god…

“Let me buy you a drink,” he offered. I was a mess.

We took the train back to his stop, me fretting the entire time about the damn phone. We got drinks at a bar neither of us liked because it was there.

“Let me drive you home,” he offered.

A quandary, because I wasn’t ready to say, invite him in. I didn’t want to make him go out of his way, to make him lose his parking spot–so coveted in his neighborhood of more care than parking spots. And did I mention I had friends sleeping on my air mattress in the living room?

I explained these things awkwardly.

“Let me drive you home,” he insisted.

He drove me home in his grubby pick-up truck. He stopped outside my apartment, idling in the narrow road, while I fidgeted and fussed with my bag.

I don’t even remember what I said just before he kissed me.

Which didn’t matter, since after he kissed me was the beginning of everything.

Mama's Losin' It4.) A memorable date.

Do I Get Martha Points for Posting Wedding Photos?

Hey, check me out! I’m babysitting at In Pursuit of Martha Points today!

The smell of spring was hiding under the distinct funk of melting dirty snow this morning, and so I offer you a few photos of a very special late spring day, five and a half years ago.

We are gathered here today...

 

This is one of my favorite photos from the wedding, even though I'm headless.

Newly Announced!

 

Mark, his brothers and best friends, late in the festivities.

the fourteenth

we say I-love-you every day
who needs a Hallmark holiday?
the fourteenth can come and go

Mama's Losin' ItPrompt #3: A poem for my special Valentine.

How to Blow A Kiss

He blows air out in a slow, steady stream.

“What are you doing,” Mark asks him, laughter in his voice. We are all three snuggled up in the bed. It’s Wednesday, and we’re not going anywhere. Snow, sleet, freezing rain. It’s warm under the comforter. He’s perched in the valley between our hibernating forms, watching us like an expectant little bird.

“Blowing kisses,” he says. The duh is implied.

Because we know his rules for this part of the game, we “catch” our kisses, “unwrap” them, and om-nom-nom them.

My son? Blows Hershey’s Kisses.

“Now you,” he orders. Ah, the benevolent dictator in fleecy monster-truck pajamas.

Mwah! I kiss my hand, blow the kiss towards him.

“No, mama! Not like that!”

He very slowly and deliberately blows a stream of air.

“You don’t kiss your hand first,” he explains to me, with infinite patience, as if I am the three-year old. I hear myself in his tone.

I imitate him, as does his dad.

Delighted, he “catches” both kisses, “unwraps” them gleefully, and throws his head back in joy, nomming them up.

Delicious.

Mama's Losin' ItPrompt #3: Describe the last thing that made you laugh really hard.

Not exactly guffaws, but it made us all giggle on a cold, snowy morning!

Slaughtering the Festivus Tree

Happy December First!
In honor of it actually being acceptable to listen to Christmas music, put up the lights, etc, I present you with our family hunt for a Christmas tree.

My menfolk head into the tree farm forest to find a tree.

What do you think of this one, Daddy? I like it.

Timber!

Let me help!

He was so very proud of his helping!

Supervising Daddy’s tree removal methods.

Tokens of Ownership

Just now Mark pulled three brushed nickel house numbers out of a rumpled Restoration Hardware bag. The receipt tumbled out with them.

4/16/2005

Three days after my 28th birthday. The day after our closing. Our first house. Our wedding less than two months away. Unbeknownst to me, my current job will end very soon, another opportunity presenting itself favorably. So much change, so much new responsibility. Going into Restoration Hardware, on the corner of Boylston and Exeter Streets, and poring over the styles and finishes, wanting to purchase a small, perfect something. A token for the house. Something to make it immediately ours. Feeling very adult, going to buy new numbers for my house at a fancy store in Back Bay.

Now, Mark sits at the kitchen table, an Azek board and a screw gun in hand, and mounts the numbers to the board. Three more minutes and the board is on the house.

Five years, four months and seventeen days later, those numbers, my token of ownership, are finally on the house. In that time, Mark has gutted eighty percent of the first floor, replumbed and rewired the whole house, built two new staircases, a bath/laundry room, a home office, a new front porch and back deck, reroofed, and fenced in the yard, we’ve decorated a nursery, brought home two puppies, and our small boy. I’ve planted gardens, transplanted flowers from my mother’s gardens, we put in a sandbox. Through all that, the old numbers stayed where they were, on the old front porch post, leaning up against the street face of the house. Somehow all those responsibilities and lists crowded around, jostling for attention, and time slipped away.

Today, though? We have three new brushed nickel numbers on a block on the front of the house.

Happy Birthday, My Love!

Today’s Mark’s birthday. I won’t tell you how old he is. (because he’s not actually old, and also? I’m already trampling his jealously guarded privacy by even writing about it being his birthday, and I don’t want you all being all okay, so if’s he’s x, and counting backwards on your fingers, toes, and any other available appendages ’til you get to year y. that would just be creepy.) I will tell you I’m making strawberry shortcake tonight, and that per the request of the small boy in our household, there will be party hats, candles, and singing.

Because for god’s sake, it a birthday, people!

Here they are this time last year. One of them looks a whole lot more grown up this year…