Feeling Crepe-y

When Court was a little boy, one of his favorite breakfasts was crepes. They weren’t fancy or difficult – maybe not even worthy of being called crepes. I would mix flour and milk and eggs and a bit of oil, pour a couple of tablespoons into a hot pan, roll the pan around until the batter covered the bottom, and let it cook. A little butter and cinnamon sugar, roll them up, hand them to Court to eat. He would literally consume them as quick as I could make them.

I thought about crepes yesterday because Bill and I joined Bec and her son Erik and his kids Mackenzie and Carter at a Food Truck Festival in Scottsdale. We walked around and walked around. There were somewhere in the neighborhood of 60 or 70 different trucks. And out of all those options, Bill chose crepes.

I would never – not in a million years – choose crepes. I don’t hate them. But when I’m surrounded by options like barbecued pulled pork or street tacos or lobster mac and cheese, there is no contest.

But he chose crepes. Of course, he chose crepes smothered in Nutella and bananas, with a dollop of whipped cream and called it lunch. But he chose crepes.

I was reminded of a time this past past summer when I took Addie, Alastair, Dagny, and Maggie Faith to a movie. Afterwards, I offered to take them to lunch. Would you like a burger, I asked. Or maybe some Mexican food? How about some barbecue? As they were pondering, we passed a little kiosk selling homemade crepes.

“Voila!” they all said. “We want crepes.”

(Well, they didn’t actually say voila.)

So crepes it was. Of course, much like their grandfather, their crepes included searchstrawberries and bananas and Nutella and whipped cream. They were hot and sweet and delicious. As we sat at an outdoor table eating our crepes, I looked up at the building towering over us. It happened to be the building in which Court works. I wondered to myself whether or not he ever ate these crepes for lunch.

I later asked him and he admitted he didn’t even realize there was a kiosk that sold crepes that he could see from his window. I think he’s moved on from crepes to huevos rancheros.

When we were in northern France during our big adventure in 2008, we were in a town called Dinan in the Brittany region. Before we would ever move to a new area, I would judiciously study my Rick Steves Guidebook. The Brittany region of France is famous for (among other things) their wonderful crepes. And so, when in Rome (or France)……  I looked back at my blog entry for that day way back in 2008 and discovered that Bill had a crepe that included bacon and mine had scallops, leeks, and cream. Ding, ding, ding. I won!

The recipe I prepared for Court’s breakfast crepes came from my sister Jen. Therefore, the buttery-stained handwritten recipe card calls them Aunt Jennie’s Crepes. Here is her simple recipe…

Aunt Jennie’s Crepes (makes 18)

1 c. flour
1-1/2 c. milk
2 eggs
1-1/2 T. oil
¼ t. salt

Mix ingredients until smooth. Spray a small pan with Pam and preheat. When the pan is hot, drop 3 T. of the batter into it. Roll the pan around until the batter covers the bottom. Cook until light brown. Using a fork, turn the crepe over and finish off.

Remove from pan. Smear with butter and sprinkle liberally with cinnamon sugar. Or smear with Nutella and add bananas or strawberries. Or whatever else strikes your fancy. Call them breakfast or an after-school snack.

This post linked to the GRAND Social

They Came; They Saw; They Conquered

Dust Devil:  a strong, well-formed, and relatively long-lived whirlwind, ranging from small (half a meter wide and a few meters tall) to large (more than 10 meters wide and more than 1000 meters tall). The primary vertical motion is upward.

joseph micah donuts vehiclesThey remind me of dust devils.

Our two Vermont grandkids arrived late Friday night, and went straight to bed. That was pretty much the last time I saw them be relatively still. Even while sleeping, they seem to be in motion.

Their parents have that familiar look – somewhere between pride and panic, with eyes mostly glazed over from a lack of sleep. All parents of young kids have that look at some point. You want to give them a hug and send them off for a week on a tropical isle to do nothing but sleep. Except they would leave you entirely responsible for the whirling dervishes they would leave behind in your care.  And they might not come back.

Six-year-old Joseph and his brother Micah – only days from joseph nutellabeing 3 – are up early, and with a vengeance. The first morning, Joseph put away pancakes –chocolate chips and smeared with Nutella please – and topped it off with some scrambled eggs. It takes a lot of pancakes to keep that 6-year-old motion machine going. Following breakfast, they checked out Nana and Papa’s backyard, rode the various and sundry scooters and other vehicles that are available, watched Papa work on the playhouse that they hope is completed or near completed by time they leave (so does Nana!), and eagerly awaited the arrival of their cousins Addie, Alastair, Dagny, and Magnolia (hereafter referred to as the cousins, which is what Joseph and Micah, as well as Kaiya and Mylee, call them.

After the arrival of the cousins, it was quite some time before I saw any of them again.

Saturday, after spending the afternoon and evening with the cousins at the swimming pool, their Aunt Jll dropped them back off at our house. Heather and Lauren were tied up all evening at Heather’s 20 year high school reunion. The dust devils washed their hands, got in their pajamas, used the potty, dropped into their beds, and fell asleep in about 10 seconds. (Well, in Micah’s case, he dropped onto the cozy little bed made out of a comforter and blanket nestled on the floor next to Joseph’s bed – there’s only so much room at the inn, and my sister Bec is visiting too – but she’s neither a whirling dervish nor a dust devil; she just sits back and watches in amazement).

Several hours later, after the household had fallen asleep, I micah vehicleheard sniffles and muffled sobs coming from that little nest on the floor. Micah, holding on to his sleeping companion – a raggedy stuffed animal named Night Night – and sucking his thumb, was sad. “I want Mommy,” he sobbed. Despite my 61 years, I curled up on the floor next to him, told him they would return, and committed to staying with him until they did. He gave me a look of slight distrust, but apparently decided he was stuck with the B Team and better make the best of it.

I, for my part, kept my commitment. After all, a) if he can’t trust his nana, whom can he trust; and b) I only see these grandboys a few times a year and must enjoy every minute. So I wrapped my arms around him and took in his little boy smell and listened as his sobs subsided and he fell back into a sound sleep.

joseph micah stuffed animalsAfter a trip to Krispie Kreme with their Papa on Sunday morning, they were off for a few days to wear out another grandma as they enjoy a few days in the mountains, along with the cousins. That gives me a few days to rest up.

This post linked to the GRAND Social