Saturday, March 9, 2013
Prizes and Pretzels!
Charlie: (pouting, petulant)
"Oh Noes! You mean these toys aren't for cute lil ole me? Some other cat is gonna get 'em?"
Me: (annoyed, but still in love)
"Oh Yeses Charlie, you greedy little ball of flufferoo! I think I've already spoiled you well above and beyond the call of duty! Those snakes are for the winner of our cat toy giveaway!.......
Both of us, in unison:
Wish I had a photo of the historic moment when the cats Polly is owned by became winners of our catnip toy snake giveaway but my camera doesn't move that fast! Last night I carefully folded each printed comment and placed them inside a box. Sat down at the table and summoned Charlie, my "officially certified raffle master." No answer. Rattled the box loudly. No answer. Dumped the slips out on the table in a raucous manner, but before I could call his name again, a blinding flash of white fur skidded across the surface, sending one - just one! - of the slips air-borne with the swift accuracy of a champion hockey puck. Off the table it flew, hotly pursued by Charlie, who landed with a solid thud right behind it.Yep, I'd say we had our winner! Never thought it would be that easy or obvious!
Polly, Charlie and I will mail your cat toy prizes to you and Handsome, Lucy, Baby Boy, Chuck, Jonathan, and Daisy as soon as we have your mailing address! And to everyone else - on behalf of 62 beloved pets! - THANK YOU for commenting and entering my very first giveaway. It won't be my last. Only this topic is my last - I am DONE with snakes! DONE! Done looking at their beady little button eyes and DONE shoveling stuffing (and catnip) down their skinny throats!
The grandkiddoes and I have moved on...now we're into something else -
Once in awhile what really happens at grandma's isn't all smiley faces and sunshiney success. Sometimes we just tolerate each other - and deal with the imperfect fruits of our labor in our own way. Such was the case yesterday at Grandma's Pretzel Making Workshop.
Arose at 5 AM to knead dough that promised the same crusty, tasty pretzels I helped make as a volunteer in the Kindergarten classrooms of my daughters. Perfection on a plate. Easy to make from staples everybody has on hand. What could possibly go wrong?.....
While we wash hands and push up sleeves, Nick chats away about his personal experience with pretzels. So warm and good. Enjoyed by the entire family "at the mall." :) Nick knows his pretzels and he's pleased to be in grandma's kitchen making them for himself.
Busy little hands struggle to make smooth ropes of dough that stretch the required 18" for a tradtional twist. We roll 4" lumpy stumps. Fat on one end, skinny on the other. Learned long ago from a parenting mag not to jump in, grab, and re-do. I make the best of it, personally charmed by the plump chubby knots I tie to salvage a dozen floppy strings.
Baking. Ten minutes. After five, pretzel tops begin to burn. Oops. In the chaos I'd forgotten the egg wash. Who could blame me? Well....Nick. "Those don't look like the pretzels we get in the mall."
He won't eat them.
Take a bite myself. Hmmm...chewy...but bland. Good thing I'm resourceful. Drizzle honey followed by a good shake of cinnamon. Bree takes a long skeptical look. "Too sticky!"
She won't eat them.
Gather the troops back in. "Grandma made a mistake, guys. We're gonna try again." Flour everywhere. On sleeves, faces, the floor, and both the dog's ears. "When's mommy coming back?" asks Sae, and I wonder the same thing as I watch the last of the dough roll short and stubby.
I tie more knots and prep for baking while the pretzel team gathers to watch Caillou and I speculate that he's the little culprit who's encouraging them to whine and complain about everything today!
I finish the job with a flourish of salt and slide the last sheet into the oven. Find myself agreeing, "This isn't any fun," and wistfully wondering again, "When's mommy coming back?"
But the mood changes when she does appear. I present each grandkid with a take out box stuffed full of wobbly knots. They insist that mommy try one, proudly describing how they were made, exclaiming that they had a great time with grandma.
Maybe it was just me. It had to be. All is forgiven. Oh, except for one thing! -the part where Sae rolled out his dough rope and paused to excitedly observe, "Grandma, this looks exactly like a SNAKE!"