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Friday, October 24, 2008

Pie RULES!

I told you how the girls and I were going to a Mother Daughter dinner. I really wanted to go, so to ensure I got to I signed up to bring a pie, I happen to be devious in ways even I wont admit to, at least not consciously.
Can't even tell you how crazy yesterday was...and no...no I was not surprise, Chaos is my way of life. I had made the crust following my mom's recipe and set it aside... things got crazy... we got behind.
Parent Teacher conferences were at The Eldest's school tonight, My Love had escaped work before being asked to help with the set up,lol! So the crazy plan was bake the pie (4pm), go to the conference(5pm), talk to her science teacher in particular, then drop the girls and I off at the dinner (6:30)while the boys go home and fend for themselves (stifling maniacal laughter here). My Loved asked if the pie was necessary, I as adamant it was.
I asked the girls to peel the apples while I went to take a shower. The apples had been a gift from one of My Love's co-workers. I had missed the opportunity to pick apples from a neighbors Orchard because of my back getting hurt, so the co-worker had sent a large bag of them to us. Of course the Ninja Pony received a good portion of them to his immense pleasure. As I was in the shower I did not hear the excuse or reasoning the Monster used on her Dad to get her out of peeling, but somehow she managed to not help. The Eldest peeled them all on her own. I had thought there were enough apples to make 2 pies, but by the time I had them sliced there was barely enough to fill my pie crust... "That's okay," I thought, "There are always left over at potlucks." My Love likes pie almost as much as I do and he wanted to have a piece too.
I was not so happy as I mad the pie, the kids had disappeared to play jump rope outside instead of doing the chores I had asked and My Love was caught up in what he was doing. So I didn't really measure I think it was somewhere between 1 and 1 1/2 cups of sugar, about half my jar of cinnamon, about a tsp of salt and I was getting really frustrated that I couldn't find my nutmeg so I skipped it... I'm pretty sure that was all I added... oh wait I threw in some flour, can't be sure how much... I then tossed in the apple slices and tossed them all together till the slices were well coated. I poured that into the pan then ran out side and told the kids to get inside and cleaned up! Somehow jump rope had turned into pull-eachother-thru-the-dirt!

Why is it when you are in a hurry, stressed, persistent, or trying to maintain a schedule everyone is against you? Kids, Spouses, Murphy's law, Time?

I was expressing my disappointment/frustration and the adjustments I thought we should make to...well the wall apparently, as no one responded. I have a problem when I cook, if I am talking or thinking hard I often forget to stop an action... in this case I was adding real butter pats... so as I expressed myself to the wall I was cutting butter and putting it on top of the apples slices, alot of butter... when I snapped out of it I had used at least half a stick of butter! I was annoyed and frustrated so I really didn't care. I quickly rolled out the top crust and put it on. The girls appeared at my elbow I had one get me a knife and the other a heart shape. I pinched the crust to seal it as they watched mesmerized (I realize now I am just that good at apple pie, I love apple pie I learned to make it when I was little because it is my favorite thing to eat, yes favorite! I had put this whole pie together without even really thinking about what I was doing...usually that spells doom, or more accurately DOOM. I am not trying to brag, I am just that amazed to realize this!) They gave me the knife and heart shape and I used the heart cookie cutter as an out line to put the slices in the crust. Eldest looked like it I had stitched a heart into the crust, she loved it, the Monster thought I was odd, why cut up a perfectly nice crust... I forgot to explain why as I threw a hand full of sugar on the top. They gasped at how beautiful it was all sparkly! Then I stuck it in the oven... and suddenly forgot at what temp I wanted to cook it! I sent them to get ready to go (never happened) and looked up the temp, 350. :)

I went to calm down and finish bossing everyone around...that's what it seemed like I was doing as the next hour was spent herding cats,
invisible cats
that could walk thru walls.
Grrrrr.

Because cats are so hard to herd I ended up in tears (been doing that alot lately, no good reason for it) and hid in my room so noone would know. Of course that didn't work, My Love always knows and came back. We decided to skip the parent teacher conference.. turns out that they were Wednesday and Thursday, Eldest was just trying to manipulate us into going when she wanted us too. Not sure why.

We loaded up and Eldest held the pie on her lap. I told My Love I could smell anti freeze, he said all he could smell was the pie... apparently the smell of cinnamon apple had him hypnotized, LOL! I kept smelling anti freeze and he couldn't. "Great," I though forlornly, "The pie smells like anti freeze."

When we got there we discovered that Eldest hadn't held the pie level and had poured the lovely syrup all over her coat! I think I was almost in tears again! It was only on her coat so she just threw that in the car and went on.

I made sure as I hung up my clock and hat that I change my mood. It was just us girls! We put the pie with the other pies and then filled out name tags, they list who you where, and who your mother or daughters were. Then we took a guess at how many candy corns were in a jar, I guessed 150, Eldest 500, and Monster 1000000000000 till she ran out of room to write 0's.
We picked a place to sit, saved the seats then wondered around to look at the displays, Eldest fell in love with a dress that was hanging on the wall, I helped her track down the lady who made it and she told her how much she loved it, would she sell it? She was flattered and would let her know, but was called away right then...

I was soon sitting by myself, as Eldest and a friend had flow together and were now walking around gossiping and Monster had organised the other smaller kids into a game of freeze tag. She a bit like me in that wearing a skirt is no reason not to run or climb trees.
Suddenly the Hostess announces that a few of the chillies didn't have names on them would you please come up and make sure your chili was registered? It was a Chili Cook-off, I watched the ladies go up and register... I was really hoping someone had made a good white chili! Then she went to the desert table...ummm why? OH look some of the pies and cobblers haven't filled out their registration either... WHAT!?!

Turns out I had entered a pie contest! I have NEVER done that before! I have avoided such contests as a rule, I don't really enjoy the pressure. So I walk to the table to register kind of stunned..I hadn't even tried to make the pie good or special, it was supposed to be a diabolical trick to ensure I was able to go out, not turn on me and make my pie a... beauty contestant! I called the Monster over and told her, she went crazy! She was so excited! She ran to check out the competition, she told everyone she saw, and several that she never saw as her voice was so loud, the She had a pie in the contest!

The dinner was starting, I track down Eldest and pried her from her friend, you see I irrationally decreed that you sit with your mother at a Mother Daughter dinner. She sat slump at her spot, devastated to hear about the contest. While the Monster could hardly sit still she was so excited about it and wanted to run over to watch the judging that was going on, the Eldest moaned that she knew we would lose, she has nothing but bad luck and she help more with the pie then Monster had so it would have more bad luck then good in it.

They didn't tell us before we went thru the line who the winners were, but you could tell the chili winners by the fact that by the time I got there the best white chili was already gone. Eldest had a hot dog and Monster declared that all she wanted was her pie! She got a piece. We all went and sat, trying not to obsess about the contest we had accidentally entered. We had drank a large glass of homemade root beer while we had waited to go thru the line, it brought back excellent childhood memories. The Eldest loved the story I told them about how my mom made witches brew (root beer) on Halloween and how cool I thought it looked. Monster took a bite of 'her' pie and declared that it was terrible and we would lose for sure! She was in tears and no longer hungry. Somehow hearing the pie was terrible made it so Eldest and I could forget about the contest and actually enjoy dinner and company. My white chili wasn't what I liked, it was more like a chicken and white bean soup then chili, kinda disappointing in the chili sense but not to bad for a soup. I wished they had thought to have a corn bread contest as I love cornbread with my chili, but no bread of any kind...unless you counted the hot dog buns.

Finally the announced the winners: They had an award for most original, hottest, overall, and white in the chilies. In the Pies and Cobblers there weren't as many entries. Interestingly the lady who won most original chili also won most original pie/cobbler! There was the best over all Cobbler, it had butterfingers crushed up as the topping. Best Crust and Best Fruit filling.
Shawnee almost fainted in anticipation and then... The Best Fruit Filling... US! We let Shawnee go except our award, a jar of apple butter with a blue ribbon on it, you would have thought it was the academy awards! She was very proud, Eldest laughed in joy and lend over to me and said, "I wont bug her that all she did to help was hand you the heart shape!" Eldest was very proud as well.

After the joy of winning the Pie contest it didn't phase us that we didn't win the most look alike Mother Daughter pair contest or the corn count. I chatted with the ladies at the table while the girls went to do some crafts, I joined them and we made enough corn cob shaped pillows for the whole family! I laughed when Monster chose a yellow material for the Thunderous one's corn, he hates yellow.

We had a ride home with a friend of mine and I let Eldest carry our award home and present it to DAD. Unfortunately, there was not one crumb of our pie left to share with him!





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