Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Do You Eat Smoked Wasps on Nachos?

For some reason, the force is strong with these guys. It's not just the red hair (trust me on this), but their faces, their cheeks, their smiles, their eyes.  I'll show you.

Ben was in elementary school when this picture was taken.  Can you see Kyle in this face?

I can't help but see Joseph.

The earliest picture I could easily find of Kyle was taken in 2014.  I see Joseph's eyes peeking out.

Jacob had just rolled down the stairs for some breakfast when I first saw him this morning.  I told him his hair looked great and he said he already knew that.

Nate brought extra feet on his trip.

Sometimes we have been able to coax kids to join us on our walks.  Not today.  We didn't try very hard, either.  I don't know what that says about us.

Yesterday was a busy day, but I thought maybe today there would be time for puzzles.  I was right!  Ben jumped right in.

Bradley chose a pirate puzzle, one I had never put together before.  It was great!

Julia and Jane worked on a jungle puzzle and put in the last piece as I clicked my camera.

Kate asked if we could play Go Fish! before she had to practice for an upcoming performance.  I'm always willing to play Go Fish!  Others joined us.  We practiced not peeking at other people's cards.  I think that explains what we are seeing here.

Ben joined us and brushed up on the rules.  He's actually a fan of just asking in general for the creepy doll or the bikerman and hoping that card appears in front of him.  We are a little less cooperative than that, but not much.

Julia and Jane moved to the Seven Dancing Princesses puzzle and Papa and I had Ben all to ourselves.  Once this kid got the rules down, he focused on paying attention to which cards we asked for, and the two grandparents were sunk.

We were saved by the lunch bell.

I spied Ella across the room, the only time I saw her today.  She has worked a lot this week.

Lunch was nachos made with Jeff's pulled pork.  This is no doubt the best pork I've ever had.  As Jeff explained the recipe to me on Sunday night, it seemed so complicated.  There are several steps, and from start to finish, 48 hours elapse.  No meal is worth that much trouble, I said Sunday.  But I kept thinking about the meat and then it showed up again for lunch today.

I sneaked half of the last piece of apple pie for my dessert.  I don't know who got the very end, but it disappeared.

Joseph is not getting pie, which I believe explains his face.

Jacob and Kate sat across the table from Papa.  He borrowed my camera to take this picture.

The lemon meringue pie was a popular choice.  I later stole a bite of the roasted pecan pie and nearly melted away.

After we'd all had pie, I asked Jeff to teach me how to make his pork.  He chose to write it down for me.  Bless him.

The rule that is probably the most important is not to fiddle with the recipe, and if I think of any shortcuts, I can't take them.  One of the intermediate steps is to smoke the pork.  I'm embarrassed that I was mentally already deviating from Jeff's instructions, and I asked if he thought I could take that particular step with the pressure cooker.

I have a smoker, but I'm afraid of it.  Dave listened to Jeff's instructions and said he'd help me make this next month when they visit.  Whew!  I asked him if he'd used a Big Green Egg before.  No, he said, but he was not concerned.  We then had a conversation about wasp nests in his smoker.  Things significantly devolved from there.

Joseph, unwilling to nap, ended up in Papa's lap.  He spied two mikans on the table and thought they were toys.

Joseph has enough teeth that zesting them became a possibility.  Papa Ben peeled one.

Section by section, Joseph let Papa feed him the mikan.  Joseph was also pretty excited about being on the kitchen table.

My camera and I wandered around to check on what everyone else was doing.  Julia had found her dad and uncle working on a 1000-piece puzzle.  This was the second one in two days for them.  Masochists, I say.

This crew was playing Magic.  I inquired after noticing that Bradley and Luke did not have cards.  They were fine, just watching, they said.  I invited them to help me with another puzzle.  No thanks, they said.  I had many questions but did not ask any of them.

Ben, however, accepted my invitation to play with the Memory tiles.  We worked on the rules, which seemed to be a big challenge for him.  But he got it!  And, he beat me, which is honestly true, but I never get a second turn after a match, a handicap which keeps kids in the game.

Aunt Jill invited Ben to help her and Julia make cookies.  He accepted!

He wanted a bite of the cookie dough, but Jill said he'd have to ask his mother.  She said, "Only one spoonful."  Ben complied.

These were pretty good cookies.

Uncle Jeff invited us to play frisbee golf in the park.  No matter that it was raining and cold, some of us actually accepted.

Despite the cold and the wet, we had a lot of fun.  Perhaps it's fortunate that everyone else is watching Frozen II tonight.

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