This morning was "tank up the kids" morning before doing a lot of cooking in the afternoon. We played games (just got Blokus, and Eli is loving that one!) and read a few books. Amirah had spent the night at a friend's house, so it was just three here in the morning. I made:
• charoses (we make a cooked one with apples, bananas, dates, and walnuts)
• the other symbolic foods for the seder plates
• turkey matzo ball soup
• vegetable dips (mayo/horseradish, pesto, and a creamy balsamic vinaigrette)
• prepared the meat and roasting potatoes for baking
• roasted beets and carrots
• lemon lime syrup for making sodas
• balsamic salad dressing
• kiwi strawberry sorbet
I think that's it! We're ready for the seders, more or less. I'll be making chocolate covered strawberries at the last minute so they stay nice, plus several fresh salads and roasted veggies on Tuesday for second seder, but that will be easy. Just us and Doda Shoshana for first night, then a dozen of us for second night. And Doda S. is bringing 6 haggadahs (we CANNOT find some of ours... we searched high and low... can't imagine where they went!!!?!?!!?!), and 14 blocks of Tillamook cheddar cheese at 50% off (HOORAY!!!!!!!!! MY HERO! To be enjoyed after pesach...), and various other little goodies, I'm sure.
Tomorrow we're picking up Doda S. at the airport first thing in the morning (IY"H). If she's not too tired from flying all night, we'd like to toodle around downtown for a little bit then stop at the fish store to pick up some fish for 1st and 2nd day lunches.
I've made an embarrassing number of trips to the store this week, when I thought the Wednesday trip to Kroger was really IT. Oh, well. And now I'm wishing I'd bought a couple of bunches of cilantro... Hmmm... Mid-week! No more for now!!
We had the sewer pipe replaced, the driveway re-cemented, and one tree taken down and two stumps ground. We have piles of broken driveway cement, tree branch wood chips, stump wood chips x2, compost (free from the recycling center!!), and a pile of dirt we moved out of the front planting area that had been covering up the gigantic stump. As soon as we can get in a full day of shoveling we could take care of a lot of that! We're wanting to put in a six-foot-wide wood chip path along the front of the house which IY"H will be where tilapia tanks could go in next year. Then we want to put in the herb spiral (4 feet round, 4 feet high) in the middle of the area, with two garden beds coming out from there, kind of in the shape of a bowtie. We'll sledgehammer the cement to turn it into urbanite to construct the herb spiral. We have our work cut out for us!
It's such a shame D. doesn't have more vacation time. He's trying to do extra now too to make up the time he'll miss during pesach (4 days). Today I talked with him halfway through and said I just COULD NOT get everything done for pesach without him. B"H, he came right home (after dumping a load of compost in the front yard), and it was so much better with him helping with laundry and the kids. My stress level went way down, B"H, and I finished everything that was needed. The house doesn't look perfect, but Doda S. is a forgiving guest. Her room should be nice and cozy (the girls have moved out of it for the duration). Amirah is happily on a cot in the learning room (soaking up loads of uninterrupted quiet time since I said the room could be all hers from after dinner until breakfast, and Raizel is sleeping in the boys' room.
Wishing everyone a chag kasher v'sameach!