October 25, 2010

A busy weekend

We have a wonderful friend who works for the Boise Philharmonic.  For a few years now she has been telling me about all the wonderful things that the philharmonic is doing and inviting us to check them out.  Life always gets in the way and we have been unable to attend any of the concerts…until this weekend.

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You see, the philharmonic put on a Star Wars concert.  The girls (and Mark) were very excited to hear the music from one of their favorite movies.  I even volunteered to make capes. 

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The philharmonic had Star Wars characters in the lobby before the show and of course the girls took several photo ops.  The music was wonderful.  The conductor was very animated and lots of fun to watch.

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Mark even joined in the fun, though he didn’t have a cape.  I offered, but he declined.  O Darth Vader how tall you are!  We all enjoyed the show so much we are talking about getting tickets to see the Lion King performance they are doing next year.  What makes it perfect is they have a “Family Series” of performances that are only an hour long and on a Saturday morning.  So the kids don’t get antsy.  This was the first time the kids had ever seen and orchestra, choir, and conductor.  They both realized how much goes into making a song after seeing all those people at work.  I’m glad we finally got it together and went to a performance and I hope we do it more often.

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The lighting in the lobby was terrible and I had to use the flash for most of the pictures so everyone has that pretty yellow glow.  But heck we have pictures with Darth Vader…

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Clone troopers….

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and did I mention Darth Vader?

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Allyson wanted to be Darth Maul so Mark and her painted the mask.  It turned out really great and was a fun project for them to do together.

Now that Star Wars is behind us I’m sewing pirate costumes for Halloween.  Hopefully I get them done before the weekend…why do I always wait until the last minute?!?

October 11, 2010

We live in a college football town


I don’t think I ever watched college football before moving to Boise.  This town LOVES their college football team.  We are also fortunate to have a pretty darn good team, so it makes it a bit easier for me.  A few years ago we started buying season tickets to the games with some friends of ours.  Every few weeks we get together with 35,000+ of our closest friends and cheer on our home team.

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Here is a picture of the bleachers across from us.  See that little group of people dressed in black in the lower right corner…those are the visitors.  This was the game again the Oregon State Beavers.  This was our first home game of the season and the stadium was SOLD OUT.  32,000 people inside the stadium and another 10,000 outside in the parking lot tailgating and watching the game on generator ran TV's.  It’s quite an experience.

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It’s great when the action is right in front of us.


It’s nice to enjoy the game with good friends.


It’s even fun to see the man who paints his body blue sitting in front of us.  Gotta love football fans.

October 7, 2010

Life has been hectic

My grandmother was in the hospital for a week and has now been home resting and trying to regain some strength for a few days.  She was diagnosed with Congestive Heart Failure which was a shock to all of us.  After a week in the hospital, lots of test, talking to several doctors we were happy to have her back home, but she needs help at her house.  A bunch of us have been taking turns staying the night with her, cooking for her, and making sure she doesn’t over do it.  It’s a terribly hard job..the last part..since she has lived alone for 15+ years and is used to doing everything for herself.  We don’t know what the prognosis is, so we are taking it day by day.

In my research for her sodium restrictive diet I came across a recipe for homemade ketchup.


A while ago I bought the book Deceptively Delicious but have never really made anything from it…until now.  I made ketchup.  It was low sodium…good for Grandma…low sugar…good for Allyson the household ketchup eater…and easy to make…good for me  I like simple.  For low sodium make sure your tomato paste doesn’t have any added salt.  At first I kept the salt the recipe calls for out, but after tasting it and realizing it really needed the salt, I put it in.  The carrot puree called for is really easy to make. Peel, slice and steam about 4 carrots.  After the carrots have cooled run them through a blender/food processor and the measure for the ketchup recipe.

This ketchup was quite thick so next time I will increase the water to 1/2 cup.  But other than that I thought it was a pretty good recipe.


Homemade Ketchup (from Deceptively Delicious)

  • 1 6oz can tomato paste (no salt added)
  • ½ cup carrot puree (peel, slice, steam carrots, puree in blender/food processor)
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 Tablespoons Apple-Cider Vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (I used one)
  • 1 Tablespoon packed brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon dry mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder (no salt, I made my own)

Stir all ingredients together in a big saucepan and bring to boil over med-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer about 15-20 minutes. Keeps in fridge about 5 days or freeze and thaw as needed.