Josh uses the pneumatic stapler to install the pre-finished oak flooring.
Another project that we did was to build a gate on my stairs to keep Lily out of my bedroom. I would love it if Lily was a calm and peaceful pup who could snuggle up next to me in bed, but so far that has not worked out. Lily gets over-excited when she gets into my bedroom. I can't get her to sit or lay still. She bites and pulls at the bedsheets, molests my pillows, and tries to get me to chase her with whatever piece of dirty or clean laundry she can capture. It is exhausting and doesn't make for a good night's sleep. She doesn't like the gate, but it is effective.
Here she is opening one of her Christmas presents: a vinyl squeaky bear toy.
The stair gate.
Winter weather is a good excuse to stay at home and cook some favorite meals. Last weekend I made a baked ham ~the classic recipe with the ham topped by pineapple slices, each with a cherry in the center, studded with cloves , and glazed with a brown sugar/pineapple juice mix. It was wonderful, and provided dinners for the rest of the week, plus made a couple of excellent ham/cheese/onion/mushroom omlets for breakfasts.
This weekend, I used some of the left over ham to make another one of my favorite meals: Ham & Vegetable Quiche. It turned out amazing!
Here is the recipe (my own creation):
HAM & VEGGIE QUICHE
Prepare a pie crust in a 10" pieplate. Rinse and drain 1 cup of frozen corn and 3/4 cup of frozen lima beans and add to the pie crust. Melt a tablespoon of butter in a small frying pan. Chop and sauté 1/4 cup of sweet onion, 1/2 cup of cauliflower, and 1 cup of mushrooms and add to the pie crust. Chop 1/2 pound of ham into small cubes and 1/8 cup of sweet red pepper (for color), sauté lightly, and add to pie crust. Shread 4 ounces of Cheddar cheese and 4 ounces of Swiss cheese, and spread in pie crust. Beat 4 eggs, 1 cup of milk and 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a bowl and pour over cheese in pie crust. Season top with Nutmeg, Basil, & Parsley and bake in 450 degree oven for 10 minutes, then reduce temperature to 350 degrees and bake for another 40 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned on top.
The quiche was wonderful and I finished it off in 2 days. Tonight's dinner was a whole Roast Chicken.
This should make dinners for the rest of the week, and then make a good soup stock next weekend.
The metal frame that the chicken is suspended on is a "Roto-Roaster". It holds the chicken up off the bottom of the roasting pan so that it doesn't sit in all that fat that drips off during cooking. During the late 1940s, my grandfather had a metal-working business that manufactured the Roto-Roaster and a number of other kitchen gadgets like aluminum colanders, boiled-egg slicers, and potato mashers. He marketed the implements to large department stores. He kept the business going for half a dozen years but was never very good at the marketing and advertising aspect. Eventually he gave it up and went to work for someone else. My Roto-Roaster works great, but I doubt that there are many more still in use today.
[Edited 2-1-17] I found and photographed an old advertising flyer for the Roto-Roaster. Driggs Metal Products was my grandfather's business.
After dinner I boiled up the ham bone with the remaining meat on it for soup. I will freeze the ham stock and make my Sixteen Bean Soup in a few weeks. I am looking forward to that!