The French + Jello Mousse = ???

My friend Mickey believes that all families have a recipe which gets trotted out at holidays rain or shine and without which the holiday would not be a holiday, no matter how white trash the recipe. (Apparently the Clintons like Coca-Cola Jello…)

I’ve been thinking long and hard about my family’s traditional white trash recipes, and have been hard pressed to find any. Maybe Jews don’t do white trash so well? Although my father and stepmother’s side of the family could come up with something if they ever had the time to cook… My fail safe recipe from my mother’s side is her chocolate Matzoh Passover layer cake which involves an obscene amount of chocolate and white wine. My stepmother’s Thanksgiving dressing (not stuffing) is another important tradition, so beloved that KDT would make two every year: one for me and one for everyone else. But I digress…

Mickey’s family recipe is for Jello mousse something or other, which when described sounds quite unpalatable, but which when tasted… well, let’s just say that my kids are going to be making this for their spouses at many Thanksgiving meals to come.

We all know that the French have, umm, discriminating tastes when it comes to food. Frogs legs and runny cheese anyone? A little blood sausage to tempt your taste buds? And they don’t appreciate the finer things in life, like ginger ale, peanut butter, or jello fluff. Sigh.

Our neighbors, Jerome and Celine, have decided to leave us and return south to Toulouse. We’ve been friends ever since we moved next door to them, and our kids are quite similar in age. They’ve also been rather tolerant of us and our loud noises, which is an excellent quality to have in a neighbor, I think. To celebrate their last night in Grenoble, they had dinner with us, and I decided to send them off properly. After all, who knows when they’ll live next to an American again?

Ramping Up


I had my eight month visit with my midwife Monday morning, and all is well. We had our final ultrasound on Friday, and so Petra, the midwife, was able to look over our results and confirm what the ultrasound midwife told us: “There are no contraindications for proceeding with a homebirth”. That’s medical person speak for “I think you’re crazy for wanting to do this without painkillers, but OK, go ahead.”Today I go to the hospital for my first (of three) ‘just in case’ visits, where I open a file, see the anesthesiologist and endure more medical person speak for ‘crazy American without painkillers’. I’m joking actually; having done this twice before the visit shouldn’t be that bad.

I’m now seeing a medical person weekly for the baby, what with prenatal visits, birth prep classes and hospital visits. Only 7.5 weeks left to go, and if you think I’m not counting the days, you’re crazy!

Jonah and Owen go to summer camp for the last time today- school starts next week!

Update: The visit went really well. The hospital midwife was quite nice, and there was also a student midwife there. The hospital midwife gave me the ‘I know you know this, but I have to warn you about the risks of homebirth’ shpeil for about two seconds, but in a very nonoffensive way.