This year, that's what we're going to do. But we'll forego the birthday cakes, too. This year, we're doing something different.
My children have been lucky enough to grow up in a good neighborhood, with nice things, tons of friends, lots of support, good schools. All the things you want for your kids, and we're glad to give them.
But it's sort of blinded them to what else is out there in the world. They see MTV's Cribs, or the lavish lifestyles of the Real Housewives or Bam Margera's high-priced antics and rarely get a dose of reality. I do love watching Extreme Home Makeover with them, to show them how blessed they are and what it means to give back.
So that's what we're doing this year. We've found a local charitable organization that can use volunteers for the holidays and we signed up. The kids, as teenagers are wont to do, would rather lounge around and pick at turkey legs and three birthday cakes, but they're good kids and are willing to listen to mom.
I've always said I was going to do this, but never made the time--and with my deadline and working full time, I still don't have the time. But I'm making it. And while we're there, we'll sign up for more dates because it's the right thing to do.
[And because my thighs don't need three cakes' worth of calories. ;) ]
My homemade apple pie recipe. I beat out my cooking teacher who taught me how to bake the pie with this recipe - which is the one she gave me and entered!
Judi's Apple Pie
Preheat oven to 350
Crust: 2 C flour
1 t salt
2/3 C + 2T shortening
4-5 T ice-cold water
Toss salt with flour. Cut shortening in with a pastry blender until it forms small pebble-sized clumps. Add 3T of the ice water, toss with a fork. Work dough with your hands, adding more ice-water as needed. Depending on humidity in the air, you might need more or less water or flour to form a large ball of dough. Separate into 2 balls, cover with a damp paper towel and let sit.
Pie Filling: 6 apples, peeled and sliced thin
3/4 C sugar
2 T flour
1/2 t cinnamon
Mix sugar, flour, salt and cinnamon in bowl with a fork. Add apples, gently tossing with fork. Allow to sit while you roll out the crust.
Roll out one dough ball into thin crust, big enough to cover the pie plate. Fill with apples. Roll out top crust and place on top. Seal edges. Poke holes decoratively in crust, and an "X" in the center. Bake 45 minutes.