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A new outfit for Belle, cooking for a crowd

My husband volunteered me to cook for an inservice at one of the schools where he teaches. (It is okay, cause that means I can volunteer him to do something for me).


The first thing I did was to retrieve my two large roaster pans from the pantry. I then took the two turkeys from the fridge, unwrapped them, cut off the excess fat, tail, pulled out the giblets, etc., washed them and set them in the roaster pans. I then added water and seasonings to make Spanish Turkey.


The gibblets just go in the scaps bucket and are fed to the chickens.

About 3 days before the meal, I made a huge batch (6 pounds) of black beans and set them in the fridge. I woke up early on Wednesday morning, and ran the beans through the blender, then fried them in bacon grease and onion for refried beans.


I had leftover liquid from the beans and used it in place of water for a batch of rice. This is known as casamiento, which means marriage. I guess the joining of beans and rice, which is my husband’s favorite kind of rice.


I then had to go to work. I came back 2 ½ hours later and then made a batch of yellow rice; my children’s favorite.


The turkeys were done and by this time, I had also moved the refried beans to another roaster pan and had them hot.


I had a large bag of chips and a jar of homemade salsa as well.

I had Felipe and David put the seats down in my car, put towels on the seats and carry all the food out to the car.


I drove to where my husband works, hitting a pot hole on the way.

Part of the turkey juice had spilled, the boys had only use on towel, and I ended up with a mess in the back of the car. I wiped it up the best I could with the towel and called my husband to let him know I ws there.


He didn’t answer his phone so I went on into the school. I found a teacher who kindly helped me find a cart with which I could bring everything inside. By that time, Fito had found me and we set up all the food.


There used to be Teacher Appreciation Dinners in the community each year, but they are largely gone. Teaching is a very hard profession, and it becomes harder every year. It was nice to be able to honor the teachers.


It occured to me that I made enough food for more than 50 people in a relatively short time. I could not have done that 25 years ago. Experience sure helps us as we grow older and are more tired. We still get a lot done, but simply because we have become more knowledgeable and more efficient as time goes by (see Cooking for a Crowd).


The only thing is all the teachers were female except my husband and one other man, and they simply did not eat as much as I had planned. I am so used to feeding young men that I forget other groups do not eat as much.


But that was nice as I had plenty of food to bring home. We even had company over twice just to share the food.


Sunday afternoon, I made Banana Bread (21 loaves) and while the bread was in the oven, I de-boned the two turkeys, mixed the meat with Cream of Mushroom soup and set it in the fridge.


Yesterday, I fried two large packages of tortillas, took a quick nap while they cooled, then went into the kitchen and rolled enchiladas. I made 4 large pns and one small pan.


I had dentist appointments with children, wrote in my book, cleaned, did laundry, worked, and took care of my mom…plus I stayed up late one night reading a good book.


All in all, a good week.


Saturday, we had traveled to SE Kansas, where we use to live, for the 60 birthday party of a dear friend. What a pleasurable day, visiting with so many old and dear friends.


One friend told us of another friend who had cancer and suggested we go visit her. We did and she is in really poor shape. It was a good visit, and reminded me at just how frail life is and that we have to take time from our tasks and obligations to take care of relationships.


My friend was deceived into believing that she was going to hell for not fulfilling certain obligations. I told her that discouragement is one of Satan’s most effective tools, and to not listen to him anymore.


This woman has spent her life doing small simple acts of service to her family, her friends, and her community. The Lord knows the intents of our hearts and forgives us when the frailties of the flesh keep us from doing more.


I did my best to reassure her and to help her find peace. It is my desire and prayer that each one of us can find peace as well. And have a Happy Mother’s Day to all the women who mother in any capacity.




 David holding Belle.





 Belle is wearing an outfit that my friend from Kansas gave us when we went to visit her.









Roses from my garden.

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