Sunday, 31 January 2010
On being a Grandmother . . .
Grandmas are for stories
about things of long ago.
Grandmas are for caring
about all this things you know.
Grandmas are for rocking you
and singing you to sleep.
Grandmas are for giving you
nice memories to keep.
Grandmas are for knowing
all the things you're dreaming of...
But, the most important thing of all,
Grandmas are for love.
I became a Grandmother yesterday, for the fourth time!!! Yipee!! Little Luke was born at 3:37 pm Atlantic Standard Time, weighing in at a whopping 7 pounds 12 ounces. What a joyous occasion. I wish so much that I could fly right over and hold this wee little spirit in my arms, but alas . . . that will have to wait for July! It is a special feeling, this being a Grandmother. I am not sure I can describe it with any justice. You love your children and you do the best for them and are so proud of them . . . and just when you thought you couldn't love them or anyone else any more than you already do . . . they get married and begin families of their own and there are these new children to love and it is a love that is different than any other kind on earth. My heart just swells to overflowing with it, and I have no words that can adequately explain how I feel.
From the time my son told me that he and my lovely daughter in law were expecting a new wee one, I have loved little Luke, and prayed for him, as I do all my family. Now he is here safe and sound, I praise God for blessing us with this new baby boy, and entrusting his care to our family.
I don't have many memories of my own grandparents. My maternal Grandmother passed away when I was 6 and my memories of her are very limited, but beautiful all the same. My paternal Grandmother passed away when I was much older, but because of distance and a language barrier, I did not know her very well either.
My own mother was a much stronger presence in my children's lives as was their paternal Grandmother. I made a huge effort when they were growing up to make sure of this, with many visits home to visit, and telephone calls, etc. Now, here I am thousands of miles away from all of my grandchildren as well. I try to be as large a presence in their lives as I can be from over here, which isn't always easy, but I do hope that one day they will always know that I have loved each one of them dearly, and that they will have fond memories of me as the years pass. I do my best from afar, and hopefully it won't always be from afar . . .
Right now though, I am the present Grandma . . . the one who lives very far away, but who sends letters, cards and presents whenever I can. I make sock monkeys, and send them noisy drums and books that my sons can read to them, bed time Noddy's and other odds and sods.
I am also the praying Grandma . . . who covers them daily in her prayers and thoughts. Praying that they are safe, and warm and cared for . . . praying that they know how very much they are loved . . . by me . . . by their parents . . . by their Heavenly Father . . .
Praying that they are happy. Most of all.
I have four Grandson's now. Four lovely little boys entrusted into our family's care. I have held one in my arms, and I hold all four of them in my heart. Oh, I am so very, very blessed. You Grandmother's who are fortunate enough to live near your grandchildren, hug them especially close today, and give thanks to God for the priviledge of being able to do so. You are so very, very lucky.
I feel like celebrating! I think I will! Many thanks for all your prayers and happy thoughts over the past 24 hours. They surely helped!
Here's a little something that I cooked earlier this week. I thought it would be fun to share with you some of what I do at work. This was one of the main courses I cooked earlier this week. It went down a real treat with the ladies. This tasty dish would make the perfect celebratory meal . . . for Anniversaries, or special Birthday dinners, or . . . Valentines Dinner! It's not all that hard to do and with a bit of ahead of time prep, is ready and on the table in about 45 minutes! I hope you'll give it a go!
*Roasted Poussins with Cranberry Port Sauce*
A great entertaining dish, which is not only very elegant, but easy as most of the work can be done a day ahead of time.
Be warned however, that these need to be started the day before.
For the Poussins:
4 tsp of finely chopped fresh sage
4 tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 TBS unsalted butter, melted
For the Sauce:
2 cups low salt chicken broth
1/3 cup ruby port
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 TBS butter
1 TBS minced shallots
1 TBS flour
salt and black pepper to taste
First prepare the poussins. Using poultry shears, remove the backbones, by cutting along both sides. Set each half onto a cutting board and flatten by pressing down on the breast bone with your palms. With a chef's knife, split each in two along the breast bone. REmove the last two joints on each wing. Discard any deposits of fat. Arrange the poussin halves on a large rimmed baking sheet, so that they are not touching. Sprinkle with the sage, thyme and 1 TBS of sea salt and 1 TBS freshly ground black pepper. Rub this into the skin. Refrigerate, uncovered over night. Remove from the fridge one hour before you are ready to start cooking them.
Place the cranberries in a bowl. Cover with the port. Leave to macerate overnight.
The next day, about 45 minutes before you are ready to serve the poussins, pre-heat the oven to 220*C/450*F. Brush the melted butter lightly over the poussins. Roast in the heated oven for approximately 30 minutes, rotating the pan halfways through the cooking time. Let rest at least 5 minutes before serving.
While the poussins are roasting, make the sauce. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring, until tender. Stir in the flour, and cook, whisking gently until it forms a thick paste. Strain the port from the cranberries through a seive into the pan. Whisk for about 30 seconds and then slowly whisk in the broth, adjusting the heat to maintain a steady simmer. Simmer, whisking occasionally until the sauce is reduced by about one third. This should take 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in the reserved cranberries and season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
Just before serving, pour any accumulated juices from the poussins into the sauce. Serve the poussins drizzled with some of the sauce and pass any extra at the table.
There is a delicious Creamy Parsnip Soup with Ginger and Cardamom on offer today over on The English Kitchen!