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Oooooh, That Smell

Being a public servant has its privileges. And one of those privileges is a fair number of 3 day weekends. Like this past one, for example. We managed to find a terrific balance between active and inactive.

Saturday involved breakfast and a manicure with my stepdaughter Jessica. We then came home and she helped me put away all of the Christmas decorations. I don’t know if it’s the unseasonable weather this year or what but I was ready to have my house back to normal and be rid of the snowmen and greens and lights. Saturday evening we attended a fundraiser/comedy night for Hannah’s drama club. It was lots of laughs! I worked on the latest pair of socks while I was there but this was before Lucia announced her new contest so I didn’t get a photo. I’ll come up with something for that, though, have no fear.

After church on Sunday we headed to Concord to visit Orchard House, the home of Louisa May Alcott. Hannah has been wanting to visit and we checked the website, saw that they are indeed open year round, so off we headed. The joke, apparently, was on us, because they were closed for two weeks of maintenance. There was nothing on the website about that and I was really annoyed that we drove all the way out there for nothing. We consoled ourselves with dinner at the Olive Garden on the way home. And the premiere of 24 took care of the rest of the evening. Jack’s Back! Woot!

Since Saturday and Sunday involved doing stuff we decided that Monday should be a day for hanging around. We headed to the grocery store in the morning and stocked up on supplies. Since I had the whole afternoon free I decided to prepare a roast chicken dinner complete with stuffing and mashed potatoes and gravy. I even bought a coconut cake, which is what my mother often served for dessert if we had this meal on a week night.


I have to tell you, my mother has been gone nearly 9 years and I can still remember the amazing taste of her roast chicken and mashed potatoes and gravy. Mine is good but hers – oh! – hers was phenomenal. If I could eat one meal of hers ever again in my life it would be this one. And the smell! There’s nothing like the smell of roasting chicken!


It wasn’t as good as mom’s. But it was the perfect end to a 3 day weekend.

This Post Has 49 Comments

  1. Food memories are some of the strongest I have. Your chicken dinner looks pretty amazing to me!
    Your Yarnival issue was excellent!

  2. That looks delicious! Your mom obviously taught you well.

    Some time I’ll tell you about Young’un’s visit to Orchard House when he was three. Let’s just say we won’t be welcome back any time soon.

  3. I just love, love, love roast chicken. Looks phenomenal! (And I’m with you. Even with a culinary degree, I still love Momma’s Thanksgiving dinner better than anything I could make.)

  4. I’m STARVING!! Looks delicious! So…you felt like the Grizwold’s when they got to Wally World?! It’s how I felt on a couple of my Yarn Shop jaunts in Maryland!

  5. Sounds like you know how to make the best of a three day weekend! And the ending is perfection itself. My guess is that your mother would be very proud and might be the first to say your meal was every bit as good as hers.

  6. I made roast chicken this weekend too, but on Sunday night. My Mom came over to watch the 24 premiere. I love the newly vulnerable Jack.

  7. Sorry about the “trip for nothing”. You should have called on Sunday! Would have loved to have seen you. Yummy dinner.

  8. Moms have a way with slipping in that extra secret ingredient. It’s called love. I bet your daughter tasted the chicken you made just like you tasted your Mom’s chicken.

  9. Oooooh, roast chicken. Stuffing. Garlic mashed potatoes with the skins in. Mmmmm.

    You do have this effect on me. Attempting to change the subject and recover a modicum of dignity, I can’t wait to see your KSIP photo.

  10. Chloe having two guys in her department having a jealous-fest over her? What the? Heh.

    There is nothing better than a roast chicken dinner…

  11. Send a few plates of that my way! I had breakfast with my mum and dad, and I have to say that nothing in the world feels better than visiting home-ah the good old days.

  12. What a lovely weekend! I was glued to 24 for both nights too – wow, what a premiere! After watching that show, I don’t know if I will ever make it to LA – they have too many problems there! hehe

  13. I know Chloe deserves some happiness, but my favorite Chloe moment is still last season, when she tasered that guy in the bar. That’s the Chloe I want to see.

    Stinks about the Orchard House. Someday I’ll get up there, but I guess I’ll call first. Good to know!

  14. growing up, my mother would make roast chicken and french fries (fresh) on sundays. and the roast chicken would have tons of garlic cloves inside. you are totally right there — there is nothing like the smell of mom’s chicken except for the taste 😉

    i think i’m going to roast a chicken this week.

  15. Mmm. Looks delicious.

    I’m a huge fan of ‘Little Women’ and would have loved to see pics of Orchard House. Maybe y’all will try to go again?

  16. You’re right about that smell. When my husband has been away for a long time, I always roast a chicken the night he gets home so the house will smell like love and home. There’s nothing else like it.

  17. drooling here – yummmy!
    Lucia’s idea about knitting startling the muggles gave me a good chuckle this morning. Too bad I didn’t have a camera with me while I was sitting at the car dealership knitting.

  18. That roast chicken looks divine! With mashed potatos and gravy, yum!

    It’s funny how we think our cooking never tastes as good as our mom’s. I make sloppy joes using my mom’s recipe and she states that I now make it better than she does which I don’t believe for a second!

  19. Oh YUM. That looks (looked?) utterly delectable!

    What a disappointment about Orchard House! I’ve never been there either… but I would like to. 🙂

  20. Dinner looks great. I may be the only one to say this but those brussels look really good. Thank goodness it’s nearly lunch time because suddenly I’m very hungry.

  21. What a beautiful chicken. You have to share your stuffing recipe. I am a pretty good cook, and I love to do it. But stuffing and me don’t get along. So share your secret 🙂

  22. Hope you get to see Orchard House. My DD was a tour guide there for a summer job in college – lovely place.

  23. Damn woman – every time I turn around you are posting some scrumptious looking food! I’m gaining weight just reading this post.

    Isn’t it funny how foods bring back such fond memories? Whenever I smell garlic cooking, it reminds me of my grandmother and her fabulous spaghetti sauce!

  24. Your mom’s chicken dinner, my mom’s meatloaf dinner. *sigh* She’s been gone since 1988, and I still miss it. I hear you.

  25. YUMMY! And I even like the brussel sprouts – yours look so perfect, JUST done!
    Hmmm….maybe I should put that on the menu for this week…

  26. Yum. It’s really a good thing I’m already eating dinner or I’d be really hungry:) That does remind me that I haven’t roasted a chicken in a while. Hmm, might have to get one next grocery trip.

  27. Thanks for the head’s up on Orchard House. I guess one should call before visiting. I find it so amazing how such wonderful smells can bring back the memories that they created for us! I think we never can duplicate the exact smells our family’s cooking makes, but we can always come close. 😉

  28. Looks delicious. I’ve been listening to Alcott’s Little Women the last week, haven’t read it since I was a kid. My memory is not great, much of it is new to me!

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