GREETINGS

There have been a lot of illnesses lately.  Doug, the resident spouse, wound up quite ill with Strep.  I know there have been several losses in the community lately as well, including “Our Bob” Key.  Allow me to take this time to encourage you all to “be excellent to each other,” and to yourself.  Take care of your health and your loved ones.

I would love to have more columns to put in this newsletter.  If anyone out there is interested in a regular, semi regular, or completely odd column, please get in touch with me.  And we are a bit short on officiants for the year as well – if you want to officiate in 2001, please contact Southwynde or me.

—Alia

THANKS AND A TIP OF THE HAT

Thanks and a Tip of the Hat to Catherine for Hearthstone's musical January Open Full Moon celebration. After a spiral dance to cast the Circle, Catherine, Hawkshadow and Richard invoked the Quarters with a beautiful and vocally complex sung chant. We meditated on the seasonal return of the Light, accompanied by peaceful harp music by Catherine. Each successive part of the ritual was in chantsong. Thank you all for beginning 2001 by bringing the Hearthstone community together with peace and music! Blessings!

—Arynne

FEBRUARY OPEN FULL MOON

The February Open Full Moon will be on Friday, February 2, 2001, at 7:30 PM, at the First Unitarian Church, 1400 Lafayette, Denver, CO.  The doors of the church open at 7:00.  We like to begin at 7:30.

This month, join Stephen, Marian, and I as we perform another of our “Oh no, we don’t have an officiant so what can we pull out of a hat” rituals.  We will celebrate Imbolc, or at least Groundhog Day, since the OFM happens to fall on that holiday this time.

—Alia

SUGGESTED DONATION

We have determined that our break-even point is about $3 per person.

We aren’t going to start collecting at the door, and no one will be turned away for not having a donation.  However, we would like to suggest a donation of 3 to 5 dollars per person.  (The extra is to cover the pagans that can’t swing $3.)  If you can’t afford it, you are still welcome – if you can afford more, we’d be delighted to accept it.

NOTE:

  Hearthstone is a church and your donations to Hearthstone are tax deductible.  If you would like to write a check so you can keep track of your donations, we can certainly handle that as well.  And if it simpler to write a check occasionally rather than come up with a few bucks every month, believe me, we understand!

KITCHEN WITCH READS THE INGREDIENTS

There is a group with whom I get together once a week, presumably to play games and relax. The last time we played a game, it was Yahtzee and the lack of enthusiasm for the game was overwhelming. So we started playing less conventional games.

Our latest game is a variation on a show on FoodTV called "Ready, Set, Cook!" As originally conceived, the show pitted two chefs against one another, with guests assisting both as sous chefs and, in the first season of the program, providing a mix of ingredients intended to challenge the chef's creativity. (In its current incarnation, the show still pits two chefs against one another, but the ingredients are provided by the show and both chefs have the same ingredients to work with.) Our version involves everyone bringing sometHing to make dinner out of. Sometimes we each have our own dinners (the profusion of fast food bags gives that trick away!) but every once in a while we're able to pool our ingredients and come up with something innovative and interesting.

Such was the case last week, when we discovered a dozen eggs, six potatoes, a pound of chorizo, and a volunteer who knew how to make tortillas out of what the hostess had on hand. So we had scrambled eggs with chorizo on homemade tortillas with (I quote the hostess), "fried taters like my momma makes."

This was certainly a lovel meal, and well worth the subsequent indigestion. But have you ever read the ingredients in chorizo? I mean, you've got to worry when the ingredient list runs two lines of fine print along the side of the tube-shaped package and the flavorings are summed up as "spices." Being sensitive to the fact that some of you reading this are totally disinterested in the actual ingredients, I won't go into details. I will simply mention that the list was specific about the parts of the pig used, and I asked for my eggs chorizo-free that night even though I usually enjoy chorizo.

In my own defense, I will say that the chorizo I usually eat is not the tube of orange-y stuff sold near the eggs in the supermarket. I generally buy it at the meat counter at Nature's Northwest in Portland, which is a "front" for Wild Oats Markets in this region. And that chorizo is made from ground pork of non-suspect origin or, more commonly, ground turkey. (It also contains neither MSG nor grain/cereal filler, which is another reason to prefer it...)  It's also so absolutely yummy that despite the presence of so much hot pepper, I'm willing to burn my mouth on it. (This is in no way to be interpreted as a plug for Natures Northwest. For one thing, the vast majority of my readers simply don't have access to the store, and I have no idea what Wild Oats sells in Colorado.)

For those of us who don't have access to chorizo made from non-suspect meat, and who don't want to eat those unmentionable parts if they can help it, I offer this recipe, for making one's own chorizo. It's not as wonderful (to my palate) as the stuff from the meat counter but it works when the urge for chorizo is just unbearable.

Homemade Chorizo

(Makes 1 or 1 1/2 lbs)

Mix ingredients and blend well. Cover mixing bowl and refrigerate an hour or more to allow the flavors to meld and get really, really friendly. Use in place of chorizo in the recipe of your choice. If you want my suggestion, brown it in a frying pan and make a breakfast burrito as follows:

Layer in this order:

Roll into burrito shape and serve with sour cream on the side if you want it and your cholesterol level will permit

GUEST COLUMNS?

If you have something to say, and are willing to let Alia edit it slightly, (generally for grammar – I have the soul of an English teacher) please feel free to submit your writing.   Content will not be edited, although it may be refused.   We need more voices for the newsletter!.

STANDARD DISCLAIMER

Please note that information and opinions contained in the articles in this newsletter are the responsibility of the authors only.  No endorsement by Hearthstone Community Church, Inc.  is expressed or implied.

Open Full Moon Dates

2001

February 2
March 2
April 6
May 4
June 1
June 29
August 3
August 31
September 28
October 26
November 23
December 28


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