Addy’s First Easter

We celebrated Easter with our Eastern Washington kids on their mountain that they’ve marked with a B. All through the morning texts flew back and forth from Texas, Southern California and Western Washington with our Easter greeting to each other, Christos Voskress! Voistinu Voskress! We always give each other the Easter greeting, Christ is Risen, He is risen indeed in Russian. And we say it back and forth three times.

This year we had brunch with some of Jamie’s family and a friend of the family.

We had an egg casserole that cooked in the slow cooker. I forgot to take a photo of it. Granny’s deviled eggs had some extras in them that made me want more than one or two. We had the traditional Seernaya Paska to spread on our Easter Bread.

The Grannies on Jamie’s side got in some good cuddle time. Dear read the resurrection passage from Matthew 28 and prayed a blessing on our gathering and then we all dug in.

Brian’s birthday was the day before Easter so we sang happy birthday and ate some pie made in his honor.

More cuddle time for Jamie’s mom, Addy’s Granny.

Addy decided sleep was a good thing for Easter.

The sunshine was so welcome. We were all so grateful for the the warmer temperatures. Addy slept a lot on her first Easter. Wish we had Easter Monday here in the U.S. so our son could have one more day at home but it’s off to work today for him after a nice stretch of paternity leave.

I love Easter. Hope yours was filled with joy!

 

Easter Brunch…

…was a first for us. We always have had Easter lunch or dinner and served lamb. This year our kids from across the mountains joined us for the weekend and had to get on the road earlier on Easter day to head home. We went to an early service and came home and started on brunch. We decided on Biscuits and gravy which was easy to have ready for 10 in a short amount of time. We used our electric skillet to make side eggs for anyone who wanted one or two.

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The tablecloth and runner were purchased at HomeGoods.

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We used shrink wraps for the eggs that I purchased at a Ukrainian market.

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I bought the glasses that are tinted on their base in green and blue from Dollar Tree.

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This is Seernaya Paska which is a sweet cheese spread made with cooked egg yolks, butter, cream, and sugar mixed well and then put in a mold with weight on top to force all the extra liquid out of it. This happens overnight in the fridge.paska class 005

This is one from a couple of years ago that I made using a larger amount and larger mold.

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The signs that the bunnies are holding are in Russian and they say Christ is Risen and He is risen indeed.

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I used little blue and green egg cups for place cards and let each person take theirs home so each household took home a green cup and an aqua cup. I bought the egg cups from World Market. The napkins were a thrift store purchase a few years back. The pearl napkin rings were a Target clearance purchase from several years ago.

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The Russian Easter Bread ready to go with our favorite toppings…

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A nice layer of Seernaya Paska (Sweet Cheese Spread) on top of the Kulich/Paska (Russian Easter Bread) and then top it off with lightly sugared fresh strawberries. Delicious! And on the morning after this next picture shows my Easter Monday breakfast…

12923134_10209189122913439_6883008362400960578_nMy next post will be all about the people we enjoyed this meal with.

Here in the Pacific Northwest we are enjoying some glorious sunshiny days! I will have no excuse not to mow the grass. It’s getting a little wild out there with dandelions! I’m feeling better, too, and using less tissues everyday. Hope all is well in your neck of the woods!

I’m linking up with Laura at Decor to Adore for Thoughts of Home #8.

Labor of Love…

I love Easter and all that it holds and all that it means. I like the idea of new Life, a resurrected Life. The greatest Love that was demonstrated on Good Friday and the Life that was resurrected on Easter Sunday.

Here are photos of our Easter weekend labors of love and celebrations.

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This was the end result of our labors on Easter Saturday. Top left an Russian Easter sweet cheese spread called Seernaya Paska. The X and the B stand for Christ is Risen. On the right is the finished and frosted Russian Easter Bread called Kulich or Paska surrounded by Russian shrink wrapped eggs. The sign in Russian on the bottom left says Christ is Risen so you see where the X and B comes from.  Now I’ll show you some of the process of getting here.

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First you gather your labor force. This is my sister Lana who arrived early so that we could get the Russian Easter Bread (Kulich/Paska) started.

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The rest of the laborers arrived and were donned with their aprons and head scarves.

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At one point in the process of mixing the dough I thought I made a big boo boo so we prayed over the dough and Lana and I laid hands on the KitchenAid.  I didn’t want to start over again. All turned out well…

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Lana showing how her slippers match her apron. I am behind in giving a shout out to My Mother’s Apron Strings after I won this Christmas apron giveaway without knowing I even entered the contest. My sister is wearing it on the reverse side since this is Easter and not Christmas. Thank you Susan for sending the apron to me.

The other photos in the collage are of kneading the dough and shrink wrapping the boiled eggs. While the dough was rising we enjoyed lunch together. Home made tamales and beans with guacamole, chips, and Dan and Jamie’s home made salsa.

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After lunch it was time to prepare the cans and to punch down the dough after it’s first rise. The Peter Rabbit bunting was completed by Katie and hung by Laura and Katie. Josh and Laura gifted me the bunting kit for my birthday last week.

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After the second rise we punched again and prepared the dough by hand for the cans pinching off enough or almost enough for each can we picked for this time around. Short, medium and tall.

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The guys were busy outside in the sunshine solving several world problems.

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The finished eggs and kulich on Easter day. I’ll show more from our Easter table in another post.

When the baking was done and the cheese mold was in the refrigerator setting up for our Easter Sunday meal the kids went out to dinner with their aunt and uncle. Dear and I stayed at home and crashed…

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All of our kids together enjoying each other and extended family fills us with joy and not having to make dinner for them after a full day in the kitchen was a bonus!

We love and treasure these traditions and hope to carry them on through the years and pass them on to the next generation.

I’m linking up with Tuesday’s Treasures hosted by Tom the Backroads Traveler and ABC Wednesday started by Mrs. Nesbitt and carried on by Roger and the ABC team for L is for Labors of Love. I noticed several L’s in this post like Life, Love, Lana, Laura, Lunch, and Labor force.

Hope you all had a good Easter Weekend and some of you got the bonus of Easter Monday holiday which is brilliant!

I’m also linking up to Thoughts of Home #8 with Laura at Decor to Adore.

 

A Glorious Day…

…culminating a wonderful weekend. Easter is my favorite day to celebrate. We had an overload of good things and this post will be full of photos!

On Friday I prepared our traditional sweet cheese spread to enjoy on our Easter bread. With the heavy rock in place to force the excess liquid out of the cheese mold it rests in the refrigerator for our Sunday celebration.

On our way to our Good Friday service on Friday evening we spotted this group of people who were following men bearing a cross. It was such an unexpected thing to see and we were inspired by this act of identifying with Christ.

On Saturday a crew arrived at the house to help with the Kulich, Russian Easter Bread. Katie arrived a little later to help, too, mostly with the Shrink Wrapped Easter eggs.

The dough was ready to go in the cans rise for the final time.

Into the oven they go.

Time to set the table while the bread cools.

I bought crosses made out of nails for each person to take home with them.

On Sunday after a great church service I added the last touches to the table while the lamb shoulder was slow cooking in the oven.

I’ll share our appetizer recipe later in April on the MGCC blog.

Besides the shrink wrap eggs we tried the rice dyeing method, too.

Lamb shoulder with a caper fresh mint sauce, caramelized potatoes with onions and rosemary, cucumber tomato salad.

For dessert, Russian Easter Bread (Kulich/Paska) with Seernaya Paska (Sweet cheese spread) and strawberries.

Our mom would be proud of our efforts this year. She loves a smooth top and no airy holes when you slice it.

After our filling lunch and dessert we decided to take a walk.

After our walk we enjoyed sitting on the deck in the sunshine!

We truly had a full to overflowing good time!

Now what I haven’t shared yet is that on Saturday my computer crashed. Oh my…that’s scary! Thankfully there was a repair system that we were able to access and everything is now backed up and restored. It took several hours to accomplish this but everything is up and running again.

Hope you had a wonderful Easter weekend!

X is for…

So here we are at good ole X in the alphabet. This is a letter for ABC Wednesday that takes a little creativity. Thank you to the ABC team for managing this meme and to Denise Nesbitt the founder.

Did you know that X stands for Christ and Cross and other stuff, too?

At Easter I make a Russian sweet cheese spread called Seernaya Paska that we spread on Russian Easter Bread that is called Paska by a lot of people and Kulich by my Russian relatives. In the Russian alphabet X is the first letter in Christ. We decorate the sweet cheese spread with an X and a B. X for Christ and B for arose/risen. Christ is Risen.

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If you are a regular on my blog you know I like to wander around very old cemeteries. There are always a great variety of crosses to photograph. Here are a couple.

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Windmills have a natural X visible from the formation of their rotor blades.

IMGP0229This windmill is located at the Mennonite Heritage Village in Steinbach, Manitoba, Canada.

P1030918This Windmill is located at Roozengaarde Tulip Garden in Mount Vernon Washington State.

That’s it for my offerings on the letter X. I’ll be curious to come around and see what you found for this challenging letter.

Summer has arrived in the Northern Hemisphere. I’m still watching all the World Cup Soccer I can fit in. Our bathroom renovation is progressing. Never a dull moment at this old house. Someone mentioned and I’m in agreement that we don’t seem to have ordinary weeks or days anymore. I’ll have to cling to the verse in the Bible that says…

“This is the day that the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24