Saturday, January 15, 2011

The party's over, literally.....

Home and settled back in, we are going to Tuscaloosa today to finish up moving Kate into her new dorm room with her new roommate. What a relief this is and a blessing that the new roommate is already a friend of hers. 

Sad but true, that if you are a smart, cute and sweet young lady ~ well, unfortunately that creates a problem for you. She will learn, however, not to judge a book by its cover and other great life lessons along the way. Most importantly, I believe this has taught her how take the issue to the woodshed. 

We were so proud when we received her first semester grades and WB has them printed and sitting by his bedside table. Could not be more pleased with Kate's study habits and the goals she has set for herself. However, we are not pleased when the drama department descends upon her living quarters thereby potentially impeding her progress. There was one specific thing we agreed upon when she left to live on campus ~ education first. 

When she confided in her older siblings, they too advised her to, "take no prisoners". Family trait, I suppose. We will do anything for anybody within our means. We take it, take it, and take it some more until the goozle is full. Then, when it does not improve, we cut it out completely. We do not solicit confrontation, so that obviously translates to some as "you can treat me  in any matter you like." Unfortunately, when we have had enough it is 'Katie bar the door' and sometimes downright scary.

So, improvements in that department for sure. A step in the right direction for Kate as this New Year brings a new class schedule, a positive environment, yoga, a "new do" and a whole plethora of new things.

The Alamo
Hunter and Kate at The Alamo in San Antonio

Typical Fredricksburg Landscape
Downtown Fredricksburg
Luckenbach, TX Waylon, Willie and The Boys (Hunter, Kate and Joni)
Riverwalk, San Antonio
I can tell that being on holiday for a month greatly energized her. She, like all of us, enjoys  traveling; by train, plane and/or automobile. Its something we have done all of her life and I remember her in diapers for her first cruise of the southern Caribbean. Even though our traveling roadshow this year took us through familiar territory, we managed to incorporate new things to make it interesting.

Thinking about The Alamo excursion makes me want to gather up the ingredients today for a Texas favorite, King Ranch Chicken ~

1 (4 1/2- to 5-lb. ) whole chicken
2 1/2 to 3 tsp. salt
2 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium-size green bell pepper, chopped
1 garlic clove, pressed
1 can cream of mushroom soup

1 can cream of chicken soup
2 cans Rotel
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
3 cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese (Monterrey Jack)
12 (6-inch) fajita-size corn tortillas, cut into 1/2-inch strips

1. If applicable, remove giblets from chicken, and reserve for another use. Rinse chicken.

2. Boil chicken until done. Remove and reserve 3/4 cup cooking liquid. Strain any remaining cooking liquid, and reserve for another use.

3. Preheat oven to 350°. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, and sauté 6 to 7 minutes or until tender. Add bell pepper and garlic, and sauté 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in reserved 3/4 cup cooking liquid, cream of mushroom soup, and next 5 ingredients. Cook, stirring occasionally, 8 minutes.

4. Skin and bone chicken; shred meat into bite-size pieces. Layer half of chicken in a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch baking dish. Top with half of soup mixture and 1 cup Cheddar cheese. Cover with half of corn tortilla strips. Repeat layers once. Top with remaining 1 cup cheese.

5. Bake at 350° for 55 minutes to 1 hour or until bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.


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