Matt's blog

The story of me, an American in Edinburgh, Scotland finding my place as a musician, a husband, a father and a Christian.

A Different Kind of Weird

I've never gotten one of these before:

I couldn't sell this back because I don't have it here with me in Scotland. Do you have my wah, AJ? We should talk about music stuff you should bring over on your trip.

Midnight Snacking-Weirdness Ahead

Man, it doesn't happen often that I just can't sleep, but it's happening tonight. I can't really complain, I know why I can't sleep and I really brought it upon myself. First of all, Jeni's been feeling poorly, both physically and emotionally, from being pregnant. Out of frustration with the havoc Nessie has wreaked on her digestive system, Jeni laid down for a nap. I came into the room about half an hour later but she'd been unable to fall asleep. I climbed into bed and gave her a snuggle, then we spent the next two hours sleeping on and off. As the sun was setting we convinced ourselves to get up and I made pancakes for dinner. Unfortunately, they excused themselves from Jeni's system rather abruptly only a short time later. Jeni asked me to make some tea to settle her stomach. I made a mug for her, and a mug for me. I finished mine, but she only made it a few sips into hers, so I finished it for her. So taking all that into account I think it's obvious why I'm blogging now instead of sleeping.

Oh, yeah, about the titular midnight snaking and weirdness. I guess the pancakes for dinner didn't hit the spot as well as they could have, because I went to bed feeling hungry. Before we fell asleep, Jeni started talking about food, about the food she wants to get tomorrow at Costco, about the food she wants to eat in the States, and so on. I told her I was hungry and she advised me to just get to sleep so I won't be hungry anymore. (Food or sleep, the classic Andrew Seely dilemma.) Over the next half hour I realized that I wasn't really that tired at all. Then it started, slowly at first but with increasing regularity and vividness. I started having the most realistic and intense food fantasies as I lay there awake. Baked salmon. Bagels with cream cheese. I know I wasn't dreaming because as the sensations got more intense I got wider and wider awake. That's how I ended up here, at 2 in the morning, eating peanut butter on crackers and drinking chamomile tea, trying to satisfy my stomach long enough to get to sleep.

Breakfast for Dinner Part 2

Here's the stack of pancakes, such as those I described in the last post, which made up tonight's Breakfast for Dinner. We don't usually do b4d twice in three days, but somehow we ran out of money in our weekly food/general expense budget this week, so rather than raid next week's budget we decided to make do with what we had. Our weekly budget resets on Saturday, so tomorrow we'll be swimming in filet mignon! Feel free to come over and be sure to bring your swim trunks.

Breakfast for Dinner

Breakfast for Dinner has become something of a Price family custom in the last few months. We started by having breakfast burritos once a week or so. After I picked up a big bag of Krusteaz buttermilk pancake mix, pancakes were often on the menu. We were supposed to have beef stew tonight, but when I realized we had run out of money to buy the ingredients I changed tonight's entry on our weekly meal plan to b4d.

At first I was just going to do pancakes again, since they've been such a hit with both of us, but I decided I felt like something different. We had everything we needed in our flat to make a spinach, mushroom and onion frittata, so I went for it. Here's the recipe with all measurements and times given in IMM (International Matt Measure), a measuring "standard" which drove Jeni crazy for the first year and a half we were married.

You'll need:
An onion
A few mushrooms
Some spinach
Some eggs

Cut up the onion and the mushrooms. Wash and chop the spinach, getting rid of the stems in the process. The proportions of these ingredients to each other are of UTMOST IMPORTANCE to the success of this dish, so follow my instructions carefully. If you're Matt or Jeni, use less of the chopped onion than you think you need, if you are anyone else, use more. When your mushrooms are chopped their pile should be larger that that of the onions, but not substantially larger. An unbiased third party should be able to judge that the mushrooms are greater, but not abundant. When chopping the spinach, be sure the number of chopped spinach pieces you end up with exceeds the number of spinach leaves you started with. If this is not the case, something has gone wrong and you would perhaps be better served trying a different recipe. Toast? Grate your cheese until the resulting pile is attractive to the eyes, invigorating to the nose and insubstantial to the ears.

To recap, you should now have this much of each chopped filling:
Onions: Less (or more)
Mushrooms: A healthy amount, shy of plentiful but exceeding adequate
Spinach: Similar to mushrooms, but greener
Cheese: Enough to provide satisfactory input to the majority of your senses

Sauté the onions, mushrooms and spinach. Put the onions in the pan first and give them enough time, but not too much, before you add the mushrooms. Add the mushrooms and sauté for the same amount of time which will likely be different (hint: it will be shorter). Add the spinach last and give it just long enough to wilt. Remove the mixture to a bowl to cool. You will know if your timing was right if it looks delicious, unless you don't like onions, mushrooms or spinach, in which case I would once again recommend a different recipe.

Put your eggs in a bowl and add some milk. I don't know why you do the milk thing, I just always have. You could leave it out and your frittata would likely still be awesome but simply have less calcium. Beat the eggs. I mean seriously. Beat 'em hard. This is your last chance, you won't be able to do it when they're in the pan. Beat them before it's too late. Beat the milk, too.

Start heating your pan. The secret to eggs is to cook them at very low heat, just barely above room temperature. In fact, if it's hotter outside than it is in your kitchen, you could just go place your pan out on the sidewalk or something. Ok, you actually can't do that. Unless it's really, really hot. Then you actually could. But what you should do is set your burner to medium low and melt a serious wad of butter in it. I mean serious. And I mean wad. Like, don't be shy to flash that buttah bling if ya got it, and ya better or else you best be gettin out of my kitchen (oh, snap). Ok, that was kind of silly, but really, use a lot of butter, like about 2/3 as much as you'd use for Kraft mac and cheese, unless you're AJ and make your mac with organic soy oil or some such nonsense. You need all this butter first to keep your frittata from sticking to the pan, since it's going to be cooking for a long time, and second to taste delicious.

When your butter is melted, add the cooled fillings and the grated cheese to the eggs. Pour them gently into the pool of fragrant melted butter in your pan. There should be enough butter that some of it overflows on to the top of the eggs. Don't worry, all that will do is make it awesome. Cover and cook for a while.

After one while, check to see how it's going. It probably needs another while. Give it one, perhaps even one and a half. Slow cooked eggs are happy eggs. After several whiles the eggs should be set and firm around the perimeter of the pan, but still almost completely raw in the middle. Now, I won't stop you from eating your frittata like this, but if you like your eggs a little less liquid you should move on to phase two.

Phase two consists of placing your frittata under the broiler for a few whiles to firm up the top. You could put a little extra cheese on top at this point. I won't give you any strict measurement here, just go with your gut. If you're lucky you have a pan with a metal handle which can go in the oven. If you're unlucky, like me, you can slide your frittata onto a plate or into a cake pan. You might think it's all screwed up at this point when it breaks and lands in the pan or on the plate in a general slop. Don't worry, just use a spatula to shove the least cooked stuff back into the middle and it will all be fine. Once again you don't want your broiler too hot, and you'll probably want to put some distance between the eggs and the broiler as well.

Check your frittata every now and then by giving it a little shake and watching it jiggle. It's pretty fun. As it cooks more and more it will jiggle less and less and become less and less fun. Eventually it will be no fun at all. Fortunately, that means it's time to eat! Let your frittata cool as you get out the plates and try to convince your wife with ridiculous hand gestures to get off the phone. Top your frittata with salt, pepper, tabasco and ketchup. Take your time to enjoy the fruits of your labor while your wife eats way too fast.

There you go! Feel free to print that up on a 3x5 card and add it to your recipie box!

A Baby!

So, I think there may be a few of you who read this blog who don't read the scotvet. If that's the case then you might be unaware that Jeni and I are having a baby! That's right, come September there will be another Price in the world. (Look out world!) Read all about it at, staring with January's posts.

Sickness and Stuff

I'm sick. It looks like I caught rotavirus from our upstairs baby neighbor. It's not too bad, and it should clear up in a day or two. At first I was worried that I finally caught crypto, the parasite that Jeni got from those cows about a month back, since Jeni's crypto-mud covered boots are still in our hallway. Fortunately it looks like it's not that and will be a lot milder.

I promised a response to Ryan a few days ago on the topic of including homosexuals in the church and penned a substantial first draft the night before last. I decided not to post it since I think it needs a lot more thought and massaging before it's a statement I want to claim publicly. In any case, I'm willing to lay out the foundation of my thinking even if its complete presentation isn't fully realized.

The church has to figure out how to affirm God's law as the Christian moral standard, and as God's will for us and expectation of us, without resorting to exclusion and legalism. We need to be able to affirm that homosexuality is a sin but not use that as a basis for exclusion from fellowship. The formulation, "Love the sinner, hate the sin," fails when non-Christians define themselves by what we know as sin. We say we hate homosexuality but not people who are gay, but I think for most gays that's a distinction without a difference. The church needs to call for repentance but also understand that it is the Spirit of God who convicts us of our sin.

Ultimately, there's a lot of tension in my thought on this issue. That previous paragraph just lays out a few of my thoughts but not in any logical sort of way. It's going to take a lot of work for me to put these thoughts together in a way that I'm happy with. Above and beyond anything else I've been drawn to this passage in Romans:

Romans 2:1-4

1You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge the other, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. 2Now we know that God's judgment against those who do such things is based on truth. 3So when you, a mere man, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God's judgment? 4Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, tolerance and patience, not realizing that God's kindness leads you toward repentance?

I pray that in whatever position I take on this issue that I don't show contempt for God's kindness, tolerance and patience, and I remember that he leads us to repentance in kindness.

A Rare Event

This is the first time I can remember this winter seeing the same temperature in here and back home. Of course, note the times in the pic. That's 12:35 pm here.

Could be worse. Could be Spokane.


Thanks Miranda and Pappy for your comments on the last post. I'll likely comment a bit more on the question myself soon, but for now I'd like to get a few more responses if anyone else has something to add.

In other news, AJ sent over a package containing a copy of Windows XP ordered from, The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap borrowed from Bobby Woo, and a copy of Brain Age no doubt obtained in some thoroughly uninteresting and non-dubious manner (prove me wrong AJ!). The Windows got installed on Jeni's old laptop which we then gave to one of her classmates who sadly had no computer while we had two. I've already sunk a good deal of time into The Minish Cap to get my Zelda fix since the new DS Zelda game, which was supposed to be out now, has been pushed back to the end of the year. On the Brain Age front, doing timed math problems shouldn't be fun, but for some reason it is. That's the update for now!

Why Theology?

Why do we do theology? As Christians, whether in universities or informal Bible studies, we always seem to be studying and doing theology in one way or another. The question on my mind today is simply, why? And to follow up, are there different reasons for academics and for lay people to do theology? I figure it's not so we know the right thing to believe so we can be saved, since we are saved not by what we believe but who we believe in. So if that's not the reason then why? Or, if that is the reason, why am I wrong? Any ideas?

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