Monday, October 28, 2013

History Revisited...and the Band, of course!

Our visit to Fort McHenry was one of the most interesting things we did during her trip. I'd been there before, once when Veronica was here visiting, in December I think...because it was super cold and windy and we pretty much ran from building to building freezing our butts off.  This time we took our time, weather was lovely, and really got a good look.  

Do you know the significance of the place? It's where Francis Scott Key saw the Flag and was inspired to write the Star Spangled Banner.  Yup, the place and time...and the STORY behind it all is so interesting.  

The day we visited was just a few days after the 199th anniversary! So you got year, September 14th, you know where we'll be...on the 200th anniversary!

I should also mention that we went to Fort McHenry the day BEFORE the Government shut down...good timing huh? 

 Mom and Mike by the armory...those are 15 foot thick walls to protect the ammo.
 O' say can you see...

We also took a tour of the Naval Academy! We were lucky enough to get there for the tour that included the Noon Day Commencement. All the Midshipmen gather (marching of course) in the court yard, with the band playing and all, and then march into the dining hall.  Can you believe the eat every meal together? 4500 Midshipmen!

Our tour guide told us to watch for men and women in different color/style uniforms because they are visiting students of other military academies from around the world.
I've taken this tour when Mike's folks visited earlier in the year but it was Commissioning Week, so there was a lot of activity going on and all the families visiting. This tour was a lot different.  We saw more and didn't have to work around stuff going on on campus. Did you know that John Paul Jones is buried on campus? He's the American sailor who during the American Revolution is famous for saying, "I have not yet begun to fight." 
"Don't give up the ship!" was the dying command of Captain James Lawrence on the USS Chesapeake in the 1813 battle just north of Boston. 

This time on her trip, we actually got to see a band competition!
The kids competed at the Navy-Marie Corps Stadium in their first US Bands competition.  That's Joey in front with the Tenor.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Back in Time in DC

The next few posts will be from when my mom came to visit, then my in-laws came to visit...and all the fun that took place!

 One of the things my mom REALLY wanted to do was try to find her old apartment building she used to live in when she lived in DC...back in 1958! 
It was so fun! I don't know who had more fun, Mike and I or her! 
So she remembered having to cross a bridge, down the street from the National Zoo and her building was on that block. Not much to go on but we were game!
 We found this awesome bridge...but it didn't seem right.  So we went the other way, past the Zoo and there was another bridge! 
 And then her building!!  But to be sure we had to walk around the corner, down the street...and to these gates!  They used to be (and maybe still are) the gates to the Indian Embassy!
 When mom lived in DC, she was 19 years old and shared a one bedroom apartment with three other girls.  She worked at the FBI.  Cool, huh?  She remembers a wonderful family owed Italian restaurant which was close to home...and cheap! The restaurant is gone but can you believe there's an historical plaque about it on the corner where it was?!  Amazing! remembers you well!
 We found a wonderful Mexican restaurant nearby with a patio and margaritas! 
What a great day!
 Then mom picked up some weird guy...

Sunday, October 6, 2013

September Socks

Forgot to mention...

I did finish my September Sock Challenge!  5 Pair in one month!  Whew!

The Remains of the Rot Chick

I'm a list maker.  Oh yes, I make a list for everything.

We always have a list going for the grocery store, Target, etc.  And I abbreviate most everything.  Rotisserie Chicken is "rot chick".  Now my story:

Recently I saw a bit on the Today show, or maybe it was the Food network, not sure, anyway it was about using those rotisserie chickens.  I mean using the whole thing.  What? I usually pick it clean and toss it out.  You know you do too, come on, admit it.  Well today I did something with the, um, remains.  I've been calling it the "carcass" but my husband gets visions of buzzards and road kill when I do, so I'm using a more "tasteful" word.  (Pun intended.)

I took the remains, threw it in a stock pot along with a couple big carrots, some celery (leaves and all...good flavor there, you know) and a couple onions (peeled, and chopped in half).  Then I threw in a couple bay leaves, a couple rosemary sprigs (from my garden), S & P, garlic, saffron, a splash or two of worcestershire and the kitchen sink.  Ok, maybe not the kitchen sink.

Brought the whole brew to a boil, dropped it back to a simmer and covered it, letting it cook for an hour or so. I pulled out the big chunks and strained the rest...Now I have wonderful home made stock to make chicken soup tonight.


Give it a try and let me know how it goes!