Chicken Corn Chowdah!

I am a child of the ocean. I was born in PA (shhh don’t tell) and moved to Cape Cod before I could walk. I was raised in the bay and cranberry bogs. I lived there for 20+ years among fishermen and cranberry bogs. When I was 15 I went to work for WHOI/NOAA Aquarium in Woods Hole, MA. When I left the other intern and I started the “Free the Lobsters” campaign and released all the lobsters in the touch tank back into the ocean. I am sure they got new ones, but at least the ones that had been tortured by little kids all summer had a chance at a new life in the harbor. When I was 22, I volunteered at the New England Aquarium in the Seal/Sea Lion Dept. It isn’t as glamorous as it seems. Most of my days were spent prepping mackerel for the animals. But it was totally worth it. But one thing I realized while working for WHOI/NOAA was that for me, eating fish was not an option. It just didn’t feel right. I could not eat fish and then come work with them the next day.

 

Then I met the love of my life. His family was amazing. His father used to be an Alaskan fisherman and was now a boat captain. They had looked past all of the mistakes I had made in my past and how I was trying to get back on my feet. The thing I dreaded most was telling them, I did not eat fish. But they accepted that too for the most part. Sometimes they still try. But I just eat around it. It isn’t an allergy, it is a life choice. As Bruce in Finding Nemo said “Fish are friends, not food.” I don’t mind people eating fish in front of me. I don’t lecture them, I just chose not to eat it myself.

 

That being said, I did grow up on the Cape, and when I DID eat fish I loved Clam Chowder. The thick kind filled with clams and a white cream sauce was the best, if it had a little bacon in it, you hit the clam chowder jackpot. I do miss it. I have tried corn chowder in a few places, but it is never quite a good substitute. It is too thin or too watery, tasteless or just bland. Then I found this recipe for CORN CHOWDER. I fell in love. I have never made soup like this before. I wasn’t sure I could do it. But I did. No cans involved. And it was amazing. Even the kids asked for seconds. Not abnormal, except for the fact that I had forgotten to buy crackers!! They ate soup with no crackers! I will totally do this again. It is perfect for the weather coming up around here. A chill in the air… before we know it the snow will be here. I will have to keep everything on hand so when we are snowbound, I can make this tasty treat!

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Don’t Blink!

Don’t blink. Did you blink? I did, and now the summer is gone. I always start the summer off with sky high dreams of what we will do. Summer never fails to be an adventure for us. It speeds by in the blink of an eye and before I know it, I am writing their names on folders, pencil cases and notebooks. Having split custody makes summers difficult. I lose about 30% of time with the kids, plus some vacations. So I try to make the times that I do have them more special.

We started this summer with a BANG! My fiance of 2 years and boyfriend of 5 years (YES it is Goalie), moved in. It was a 75 mile move. Well worth the wait. Punk excelled at gymnastics camp and Bear rocked golf camp (4 weeks each). Plus we spend a week on the Cape. This year was extra special. Every year Nana rents us a house/condo. This year Bear, Punk, Nana (my Mom) and Gram (my Grandmother) all stayed in the same house together. This will be the last year that happens as there are some changes going on. While there Bear went to sleep-over camp at CCSC, Punk hit up the day camp. I think this place is Heaven on Earth. I went here as a kid, and I loved every moment. One of my counselors Lindsay Mead eventually wrote this in the Huffington Post about CCSC. She hit the nail on the head. Grab your tissues. In the evenings/afternoons Punk and I bond. We go to the pool or we hit up the trampolines where she did her first ever unassisted back handspring!! We visit, childhood friends of mine, who even after all these years, are closer than ever. We play mini golf and for 7 days, nothing is ever wrong. Bear shoots a BB gun while Punk goes for the bows and arrows at camp, they swim in a pool and the ocean and take nature hikes before  playing countless games of tennis. And then when we returned home Bear’s baseball team won 1st place in the Jimmy Fund 9 year old All Star tournament. I am one proud mama.

So tonight, as I sit here labeling things with their name and planning out their lunches, I think back on the amazing memories I have been a part of this summer. I think I am the rare mother, who hates to watch her children go back to school. Not only are they children, progeny, kids, siblings, they are my best friends.

But the fall brings some excitement also, weddings, baby showers, birthdays and back to school. Best of all Dr. Who will return! Apple picking is always a favorite of mine. I know no matter what is around the corner, it is an adventure we will take together.

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