Monday, November 28, 2011

Black Friday Shopping

Were you among the shoppers on Black Friday? Did you find what you were looking for? I hope so.

AD and I ventured out but much later than many folks. We found most of the things we went after and missed a few too. That's ok though because the stores got more than their fair share of our hard earned dollars.

The first place we stopped was Staples for a couple of things we needed for our own use. AD zipped in and out of there in no time. The next stop was our local mall. It's a small mall and we were happily surprised that it wasn't all that busy. AD wanted to go to Sears and I had to return a gift I'd already purchased a couple of weeks ago. UGH!

Those who know me well know that I HATE returning things. I will do most anything to keep from returning merchandise. But there was no way around it this time. And I have to say, the folks at American Eagle really made it easy on me. I can't tell you how much I appreciated the two clerks that helped me. I was able to exchange the item I was returning for something that is sure to make someone very happy. And I was in and out in a flash. Seriously! On Black Friday of all days.

Then we were off to Tulsa. Our timing couldn't have been more perfect. The first huge wave of shoppers were probably home taking naps by then. There was some traffic but not nearly as bad as we'd expected.

I was periodically checking my email as we made our way from store to store. When I read one from Best Buy that said they had iPads on sale I remembered AD's youngest sister mentioning on Thanksgiving that she was looking for one but there weren't any in the newspaper sale ads that she'd seen. I told AD in case he wanted to pass that information along.

Well, guess what?! The next thing I know we're headed to Best Buy. AD let the iPad out of the bag so to speak. He told me Santa was planning to bring me one for Christmas. So that jolly old elf caved in and gave me have my gift early. Santa can expect extra special cookies left out for him this year!

Oh, and that kaleidoscope picture of AD at the top of this post - I've already been playing with my iPad.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

Ok, so I set up a post to wish everyone who stops by my blog from time to time a very Happy Thanksgiving.

I set it up to automatically post at 12:01am on Thursday, November 24.

When I called up my blog just now I was surprised to see my 'noodle post' pop up.

I'm sorry about that!

I hope you and yours had a wonderful Thanksgiving and made some wonderful memories.

Blessings to you all.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I Knew I'd Forget Something!

I had a question with regard to my post yesterday about my homemade noodles.
Wouldn't you just know I'd leave something important out?!

After the noodles are cut they are left to dry at least overnight, sometimes even a few hours longer. They are ready to cook then or be frozen for future use.

After the ones I made the other day were all nice and dried, I put them into a freezer bag and popped those babies in the freezer.

Thursday morning they'll come out of the freezer just as soon as the chicken broth has come to a nice boil.  Then into the pot they'll go.

I can almost taste them now.

Note to Driller: I've often said that if we had to limit our Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner  to just the bare essentials, our family would unanimously choose to have chicken and noodles, mashed potatoes and homemade hot rolls. Everyone in the family, with the exception of myself, tops their mashed potatoes with their chicken and noodles.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Homemade Chicken & Noodles

Last week I had some questions on how I make my noodles.

Over the weekend I made up a batch and froze them in preparation for Thanksgiving.

We're expecting 18 to 20 people and all of us are pretty fond of our chicken and noodles. So I needed to make a big batch.

I started with 8 large eggs. (Please pardon the scratched up bowl I use. It's seen its share of noodle dough over the years.)

Then I added some salt and pepper. Sorry, but I didn't measure those but it was about 10 turns of the grinders.

The eggs were then beaten with a fork.

A couple of cups of flour went into the eggs.

This is what the dough looked like after the 2 cups of flour were mixed in.

Then 2 more cups of flour were mixed in. The dough became fairly stiff.

I dumped the dough out onto about another 1 and a half cups of flour and kneaded it in.

I have to say here that sometimes it takes more flour than that to get a good stiff dough. I'm not sure but maybe the weather has something to do with it.

The dough was then rolled out as thin as I could get it. (I have a big table!) I use a heavy rolling pin now but years ago, before I had a rolling pin, I just used a heavy glass.

That's where the noodle cutter comes in. It's just like using a rolling pin except that it cuts through the dough. Because I can't reach all the way across the table, I cut one side, then went around to the other side and lined up the noodle cutter with the lines that had already been cut. 

Then I use a pizza cutter to cut the strips of noodles going the other way. Some people like long noodles, some like short noodles, but we like ours kind of in-between. They're probably about 3 1/2 to 4 inches long.

Tomorrow I'll cook the chicken. I do that in a pressure cooker but boiling it is also fine.

The chicken will be taken off the bone, shredded and refrigerated. The broth will be cooled and then go into the refrigerator too.

On Thursday morning, the broth will be put in a large pot along with several cans of Swanson's chicken broth - probably 6 or 8 for this size batch. The liquid will be brought to a boil and the noodles will be added in handfuls, stirring after each.

Once all the noodles are in the pot, the chicken will be added. The noodles will cook for at least a couple of hours because we like the broth to thicken.

I do stir the noodles every once in awhile while they're cooking and add more broth if needed because the noodles do absorb some of the broth.

Oh, and as they absorb the broth, they expand. That's the reason for using a big pot.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Tribute to a Fallen Hero

On Saturday, November 12, just one day after our nation celebrated Veteran's Day, Sgt. Christopher Gailey was laid to rest in Ochelata, Oklahoma.

Chris was a 26-year-old member of the Oklahoma National Guard’s 45th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, based in Sand Springs, Oklahoma.

He, along with Sarina Butcher, 19, of Checotah, Oklahoma were killed on November 1 in Afghanistan’s Paktia Province when a bomb went off near their military vehicle.

AD and I were proud to be among hundreds of people who stood along the funeral procession route from Bartlesville to Ochelata to show our gratitude to and our respect for Chris and his family.

I couldn't begin to count the number of vehicles that passed by honking, waving and giving a big thumbs-up. It was a very emotional time and one I won't soon forget.

At this time of year especially, I would ask that you pray for those who serve in our military and their families. And if you happen to see someone in uniform while you're out and about, thank them for their service.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Noodle Cutters and Lumberjacks

When AD and I visited Silver Dollar City last month there were two main things on my agenda.

Daughter wanted a new noodle cutter. We make a lot of noodles in our family and we love the noodle cutters from Silver Dollar City. I, personally, have 3. The first one I bought was back in 1976.

It cut many a noodle and after many years of use one of the blades (for lack of a better word) somehow got a nick in it. I could still use it but I had to go back and cut each place where the nick went over the dough.

So when Daughter got married 20 years ago, I bought her a noodle cutter and a new one for myself. 

Last month this gentleman made our new ones.

It always amazes me when I watch the craftsmen at Silver Dollar City at their work. They make each of their crafts look so easy.

During this year's Fall festival there were a couple of lumberjacks showcasing their skills.

The pole shown above was 40 feet tall. The crowd was told that normally lumberjacks compete climbing poles that are 60 feet in height.

They can shinny up and down those poles in less than 30 seconds. WOW!

There were also sawing demonstrations as well as axe throwing.

But the competition I really wanted to see was log rolling. These two guys did some of that but my photos didn't turn out very well.

Here they were running from the shore across several logs out to that platform.

They both fell in a few times.

Oh, I think I forgot to mention that the temperature that day was in the high 40's and there was quite a wind blowing across the water.


At one point one of the lumberjacks just stayed in the water until he absolutely had to get out. AD said he was probably warmer staying in the water.

All I know is I was freezing and if I hadn't wanted to see that demonstration so bad I would have been inside somewhere drinking a nice mug of hot chocolate.