June 26, 2015

Happenings, Part 1 -> Family, Lasagna & A Party

I knew the time with our kiddos would go fast, but REALLY FAST seems more like it!

We managed to squeeze in some great times making memories.  Here is Part One of our two weeks together.

L-R: Rene', Alex, Sandi, John, Jessica & Ron

Thursday, June 11:
My Aunt Sandi and Uncle John love me as if I was their own daughter.  They have been supportive of Ron and I for so many years.  And Alex and Jessica are like the grand kids they never had.  So when they heard that both of our kiddos were coming for a visit at the same time, they just had to come and see us all!  We chatted here at the house for a few hours, reminiscing about the past and talking about what the future holds for Alex in Japan.  They were concerned for Jessica too.  She's been unable to work since her accident in late May.  It may be up to another couple of months before she can return to her job.  We decided to take the gang over to Marie Callender's for dinner.  The food was great and the conversation flowed freely.

Unfortunately Ron and I still had to put our time in at the shop during the week.  The kiddos didn't seem to mind.  They enjoyed staying up till goodness knows what time (usually 4 or 5am) and sleeping in till mid afternoon...  Oh, to be young again.  We'd share dinner and a game or TV time together but nothing beats fun time!

the beginning of a fantastic dinner
Saturday, June 13:
Thankfully the weekend came quickly and we were able to spend some time with them both.  Jessica had been looking forward to making us lasagna.  But not just any lasagna.  She wanted to make us "World's Best Lasagna", a recipe she found online and has used many times.  The recipe says it takes 3+ hours to prepare.  It really takes a lot longer because you have prep time for the sauce and then the time it takes to assemble the lasagna.  Jessica said that sometimes she'll make the meat sauce and use it for spaghetti.  I'm sure whatever isn't used will freeze quite well.

Jessica and I took a trip to the grocery store together to gather the ingredients.  The grocery store has a couple of the motorized carts.  Jessica rolled around on it while I followed with a shopping cart.  Wish I got a photo...  She filled the cart's basket with lasagna ingredients.  I filled the larger shopping cart with other essentials for the week.

ooey gooey goodness

Jessica was a trooper standing in her boot while cooking dinner for us.  And just like the recipe's namesake, it was absolutely the best lasagna I've had the pleasure of eating!  There were a few slight modifications Jessica made to the recipe.  She used ground turkey instead of ground beef, she added some crushed red pepper, she used already sliced mozzarella cheese (a real time saver) and she used wheat lasagna noodles (her preferred style).  Every one of us ate a huge piece.  It lasted only two meals!  The combination of meats in the sauce, the added egg and spices made the taste incredible.  The 9" x 13" pan was overflowing with melted cheese and meat sauce.  I'm glad she thought of putting it on a foil lined cookie sheet.  If you want a great crowd-pleaser, give this recipe a try.  You won't be disappointed!!

Sunday, June 14:
Alex isn't much a fan of being the center of attention.  So a Big Thanks to Alex for agreeing to my idea of throwing a going away party for him!!  We invited friends and family over to the house.  Some we see often, others not so much.  We had around a dozen people stop by and say their well wishes to Alex.  It's great to see him happy and enjoying himself.  

chatting with friends
We did get some news from Ron's brother, Burk.  He and Karen will be selling their house and moving to Missouri in the next few months.  Karen's dad isn't doing well and she wants to spend as much time with him as she can.  Burk will be working for the same company, only reporting by telephone and traveling to customer's facilities as needed.  We were really hoping to begin RV'ing with them.  We'll definitely have to visit them when we finally get on the road.

On the flip side, the weather that day was excellent.  There was a very slight breeze and the temperature was in the mid 90's.  I asked guests to bring their favorite dessert to share.  I made a cherry cobbler in the crock pot, there were some home made cookies and even a fruit torte.  Everyone left stuffed and of course, there were plenty of leftovers. Yum!
We decided to take Monday off work and play hookie in San Francisco.  But that's in my next post, so stay tuned... 


  1. Wow that is one good looking lasagna! What a trooper to prepare it on one leg :-) My oldest is not a fan of being the center of attention either - I'll have to try the multiple desserts idea in the future! So wonderful you had this time with the kids.

    1. OMG-Best. Lasagna. Ever.
      If your oven is too small for a 9" x 13" pan, half the ingredients and make it in an 8" x 8" pan. You won't be disappointed :-)
      Jessica left last week. Alex left just this morning :-( It's so quiet here again...


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