Friday, October 22, 2010

The First Company Girl Coffee in a Looooooong Time...

Good morning, company girls!
It's really sad just how long it's been since I even stopped by the Home Sanctuary site, much less participated in the Small Things. But I'm hoping to turn that around now that my life has changed so drastically. For a more detailed review of the last nine months (and one really cute picture!), please see the last entry. But suffice to say, I had my first child, a beautiful baby girl, and am now on short-term disability, enjoying the reprieve and waiting to see what other amazing things God is going to do in my life.
Meanwhile, I am sitting here listening to the hum of my computer and the occasional grunt and gurgle of Hannah on the baby monitor as she struggles in vain to wake up from her morning nap. I'm sipping my decaf tea (sadly, I have no coffee), and mulling in awed wonder at how much has changed in just the last two weeks. Not only in my personal life, becoming a mommy, or in my physical condition, getting my body almost back to normal and suddenly functioning on half the sleep I would once have thought necessary. But also outside, in the world around me, the air is getting cooler, and kissing the trees with the colors of autumn. I drove to a friends' house the other day to visit and pick up a breast pump (ours had pooped out, and God miraculously provided an even better one, sparing our finances at least $100-- LOVE it when He does that!), and I was just amazed by the beauty of the Thomas-Kinkade-like quality of the trees in her neighborhood. Everywhere you looked, the cloudy gray daylight played through oranges and scarlets like a huge quilt. God really is such an amazing artist. And all this change seems to have waited until I got home from the hospital to occur, so that everyday, I have some new surprise to look upon just outside my window (or in my mirror).
Speaking of things outside my window, I keep forgetting to steam those pumpkins I had my father-in-law bring home from his weekend in Amish country. I've gotten way into baking my Fall pumpkin goodies from scratch, using real pumpkin instead of the canned stuff. It makes everything taste so much better, and it actually is quite easy. Matter of fact, I could probably share the technique on here:
  1. Wash outside of pumpkin.
  2. Chop off stem and "button" on the bottom.
  3. Chop pumpkin in half.
  4. Use your fingers to scoop out the seeds and drop in a bowl (gotta use up every part, and homemade pumpkin seeds are way easy and yummy!).
  5. Once you have mostly cleared the inside of seeds, use a metal spoon to scoop out the stringy pulp.
  6. Chop the pumpkin into pieces small enough to fit in the steamer basket of a steamer pot.
  7. Steam covered in basket until pumpkin is soft enough to be speared with a fork and rind starts to peel away from the flesh. Cut off flame, uncover, and let cool until you can handle it.
  8. Using your same spoon (to cut down on dishes), scoop the flesh off of the rinds. Throw away (or compost) the rinds. Puree flesh in a blender or food processor until pulpy (should have the consistency of a smoothie).
  9. Can be refrigerated or frozen. To thaw, microwave until mixable, then stir with a fork.
The best pumpkins, I have found so far, are the small, flattish orange ones, between the sizes of a softball and a volleyball. Bigger than that, they start to lose flavor. I haven't, however, gotten around to trying various other types, like the fairy tale pumpkins or white-fleshed ones. Please let me know if you've used these and how they taste! Some ideas of items to make with your pumpkins:
Okay, well, I didn't actually plan for this to become a cooking blog, but hey, it's Fall, and nothing says Fall like pumpkin EVERYTHING! LOL.
Enjoy! I'm off to get another cup of tea. Cheerio!


  1. I love pumpkin anything, so I think I'd better head out and purchase one or two! Thanks for visiting my blog AND congratulations on your new little baby girl. She is adorable!

  2. In an odd twist, I don't like pumpkin pie, but love pumpkin soup and pumpkin bread! It is so much cheaper - and easy and better for you - to cook your own pumpkin and use that puree. The Haitian soup looks different - my own soup recipe is primarily veggies, and I kind of like the idea of the meat and rice, and chunks of pumpkin instead of puree. May try that one!

    Congrats to you and your hubby - Hannah is very, very cute. Will pray for your job situation, that God directs all that happens and you land in the spot He is openning just for your talents.

  3. Congratulations on being a new mommy! Thank you for stopping by my blog..I appreciate your comments.

  4. Congrats!! That is some exciting news. Get some rest when you can.

  5. Congratulations on the new baby! How precious! I read the post below and hope the job situation works out. Some of my favorite job memories are working retail. Low stress, lots of fun chatting with customers and you NEVER take your work home with you!

    Enjoy that precious little one...glad to have you back!