Friday, August 24, 2012

Miracles and Bacon and Leeks

Gypsy Slow Down

The deer cam in the tree caught me leaving the house one day. I have to say that is very weird. I'm all for monitoring the deer (for whatever reason) but I guess I won't be running to the car in my robe anytime soon!

This weekend we are painting the kitchen. A soft sunny yellow. For far too long the dark green has prevailed and it's overdue a change. When we were getting married I picked out this lovely pale olive green and when Witt started to paint we noticed it really looked darker. I thought it would dry lighter as is sometimes the case but instead it dried...even darker. It hasn't been so bad, with my red striped curtains and red pots and pans it's been Christmas in there everyday. And I haven't given it much thought. The thing is, since we've lived in the little brick house I've gone through phases of having one foot out the door. But lately, as in this past year, I've grown to love this town and I feel like it's mine. I know the good places to eat, I know every thrift store for miles around (that's partly due to Witt), I know every playground and all the old neighborhoods with the adorable cottages. The kids and I spend a lot of time at the Library, the one with the carousel horse outside the front door. I also feel so lucky to live on a long stretch of field with a garden and a weeping willow in the front yard. Since I'm daily seeing how good we have it, I'm happy we are staying for a little bit longer. And so the green had to go.

Gypsy Slow Down

As I was deep cleaning today and getting everything out of the kitchen and ready to paint, I looked at my KitchenAid Mixer and I don't think I've ever told you that story. I can't believe it, because it's such a good story. When I was getting married I registered at Target and the usual places and it was fun but what I really wanted was a KitchenAid Mixer. I wanted the one in a beautiful almond color, a color that reminded me of the 1950's and that you rarely see in stores but is here online. And it was $500. I registered for it for fun, wanting it but knowing I'd just have to save up after we were married since it would be a super expensive gift for anybody. Unknown to me, my mom really wanted to buy it for me. Growing up, as I've said before, we pretty much lived to the whirling sound of the mixer, always in the kitchen making mousse and whipping cream and eating our sugar free concoctions. My dad still says I can't come over for five minutes without the mixer going. What with paying for the wedding and everything else, it was going to be a costly gift for her to buy me and she knew she really couldn't. So she prayed about it and asked God to provide. You should know that one of my parent's hobbies is to eat lunch together and then go to Goodwill and scout out vintage finds and antiques. One afternoon my mom went back to the housegoods section at Goodwill to look around. Suddenly, low and behold, sitting on a shelf was a KitchenAid mixer. With all the parts. For twenty-five dollars,

  and in a beautiful almond color. 

I don't know what my Mom's reaction was, but when she told me the story as she presented the mixer to me at one of my showers, I started to cry. I just couldn't believe it. God cares about the small stuff.

Tomorrow we will paint and give new life to my little kitchen and as I move that heavy mixer I will remember how God provided something that might seem small, just for me and how if that's the case, how much more will he provide the big stuff? And I will count my one thousand gifts and be ready for all the adventures big and small.

"Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid." 
John 14:27

Gypsy Slow Down

Before I leave and re-tackle the cleaning, I have to share with you this deliciously easy weeknight fare, chicken with bacon and leeks in a creamy sauce. It only took about 15 minutes to make, and since I used thin sliced chicken breasts it was even faster than the original recipe from Food Network which used drumsticks. I love leeks, I love the chewy texture and the soft onion flavor and the way they permeate this bacony sauce.

Chicken with Bacon and Leeks


  • 3 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 4 thin sliced chicken breasts
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 bunch leeks, white and light green parts only, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • Lemon wedges, for serving


Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Put the bacon in a large skillet and cook over medium-high heat until some of the fat renders, about 5 minutes. Push the bacon to the side of the pan. Stir in the garlic and leeks and remove from pan to set aside. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, then add it to the pan and cook, for about three minutes on each side. Remove the chicken and place in oven to cook while rest of sauce is finishing. Add the leek and bacon mixture back to the pan. Add the broth and half-and-half and cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Bring to a boil and stir in the cornstarch and whisk until thickened. Add the parsley and a squeeze of lemon juice. Spoon the leek sauce over the chicken. Serve with the remaining lemon wedges.

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