Saturday, October 29, 2016

Craft time - Floating Candles

Guys, these are SO cool, and SO easy!  I saw this video on Buzzfeed a few weeks ago and showed it to the Mister.  How to make floating candles out of cardboard tubes. 

Well, he thought they were hilarious, and over the next couple of days he made us 3.

They look so awesome in the window at night!  The Mister AND The Boy are already arguing that they should stay up through Christmas.......

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Book Club - To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

"...(he was now positively allergic to my presence when in public)..."

' "Cry about the simple hell people give other people - without even thinking." '

' "Don't fool yourselves - it's all adding up and one of these days we're going to pay hell for it." '

' :....we had given him nothing, and it made me sad." '


For Summer Reading Club - Award Winner

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Apple butter

We had an abundance of apples in September and I'd come across an easy to make apple butter recipe, so we gave it a try. Very easy and very very good. 

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Farmers Market yesterday

Yesterday was the second to last Saturday Farmers Market, and it was a gorgeous day to be outside. 

We finally stopped by the Terrior Cheese stand and ate a whole bunch of samples.  It was all so delicious.  We bought a smoked cheddar and I think I'll be back next week to buy one or two more cheeses for the last hurrah.

We also stopped for the first time at the Kombucha stand and sampled it.  The guy was pretty busy and wasn't able to chat much so we tried our samples and bought a small bottle of strawberry agave.  I found this article this morning about making your own Kombucha when I was googling, and it was pretty interesting.  Not that after sampling the stuff one time yesterday I want to dive into making it myself, but it was one of the only websites I recognized in my search, so I went with it.

We also got some beef jerky.  

Last night we cut the sprouts off the stems in preparation for tonights Sunday dinner.  They are so small and adorable!  I am so tempted to try growing sprouts in our garden next year.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Sunday Dinner - French Onion Chicken and Chocolate Loaf Cake

I've stopped taking photos of Sunday Dinners apparently. 

So this was a dish I've had saved for ages - French Onion Chicken.  The Mister and I 
love a good French Onion soup so I've been wanting to try this for a long time.  
Having company over for Sunday dinner is a good time to pull out 
these fancy sounding recipes, right?

This dish - recipe here was amaze-balls.  Delicious!  Pretty to look at!  
Even the kids ate some!  A miracle in a serving bowl.

I made 1 1/2 times the amount of sauce, and I would do it again - I'm a sauce 
girl and this was  a good one.

The only thing we did differently was we didn't top the dish with the cheese and bake in the oven - we simmered the chicken a while on the stove and then passed the cheese at the table.  

Dessert was Nigella's Chocolate Loaf Cake.  It was ugly but good, and the leftovers disappeared pretty quickly.  I'm not sure I'd race to make it again, but if I ever must make a loaf cake of the chocolate variety, I would return to this recipe.  Check it out here.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Book Club - Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline

' I am ninety one years old, and almost everyone who was once in my life is now a ghost. '

' "Yes I do.  I believe in ghosts."
"Do you think they're...present in our lives?"
Vivian fixes her hazel eyes on Molly and nods.  "They're the ones who haunt us." She says.  
"The ones who have left us behind." '

"Now then.  Where shall we begin?" 


For Summer Reading Club - Recommended by a friend.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Garlic Bread, revisited

The Mister bought some stunning garlic at the farmers market this summer and I wanted to do more with it than just chop it into a sauce, so I tried my hand again at a bread recipe from long ago -  Dan's Garlic Bread from my hardcore bread baking days.

I had forgotten how time consuming bread baking could be - this one took ages with all the folding and resting and turning, but man, what a bread.  So delicious.  

The weather is so much cooler now that I've been doing more baking - one of the few good things about the season change.  I've got a couple of new-ish to me bread books I'm hoping to dig into soon.
What's happening in your kitchen?

Monday, October 17, 2016

Quilla's Restaurant

For years and years there was this great restaurant in town called Chapters Viewpoint.  It was a steak/Mexican restaurant sitting on a beautiful viewpoint overlooking the city.  Quite the fancy joint.
As far as I know, it was a well liked popular place.  We didn't go there a ton, but they had 2 completely amazing items on their menu that drew us back again and again - the Chapters Salad, a scrumptious salad of lettuces with Monteray jack cheese, slivered almonds, and a creamy, dreamy dill dressing; and the sopapillas - fried dough served with honey butter.  The combo of the 2 was actually a lunch special and was the perfect meal. 
Anyway, the restaurant closed down a couple of years back and I've been 
dreaming of sopapillas since.  
This summer a friend and I tried out Quilla's Restaurant on Victoria - one of the few Mexican places in town because they have sopapillas on the menu.

The restaurant was quiet, but the service was terrible - slow and scattered. Our food took forever, drink refills were non existent, and the food was mediocre at best.  The worst past was the sopapillas - thin, dry disks as hard as rocks.  A completely disappointing meal.  

If you're in the 'Loops looking for Mexican food this is not a place I would recommend.


Thursday, October 13, 2016

Yoga. And stuff.

 I know, you've been worried since I posted about my 40 days of yoga challenge and then never mentioned it again. Sorry.  

So, let's talk about it.  Did I do yoga every day for 40 days?  No.  Did I come close?  Er....close-ish.
Did I enjoy myself?  Yes.  Do I feel better?  Some days I do.

I practiced at home, and I started going back to my studio at the end of August.  
The first 3 times I went were emotionally very difficult - the first time I was 
shaking and nearly crying from being so panicked about returning.  
And nothing bad happened - I didn't hurt or embarrass myself, no one laughed or told me to get out.  After a few "easy" classes I returned to my regular classes from the Spring.  
The sky didn't fall!  
I am obviously well out of practice, my sore shoulder makes some of the moves 
difficult/impossible, and my anxiety likes to pop up each class and remind 
me how much I suck and that no one likes me, 
but I'm doing it.  I'M DOING IT.  
I'm practicing pretty much daily now at home, and taking at least 2 classes a week.  

I've been reading a lot online, trying to establish a home routine, but so far I've just been doing what feels good, and what I can sneak in in the mornings before work or the kids getting up.
If you're reading this and you have any yoga books, websites, 
pose or any recommendations, drop me a line!

Sunday, October 09, 2016

Sunday Dinner - Pizza and Make Your Own Sundaes

This one is from last month - The Last Sunday Dinner Before Grade Two (2!!!!!!) Started. 

The Boy chose pizza for dinner and I suggested homemade pizza and make your own sundaes for dessert. Done! 
 I used my favorite Guy Fieri pizza dough. 
 We made one half pepperoni and half pepperoni and tomato, and one ham, artichoke heart and olive. 

I think The Boy's favorite part was going to the bulk store and picking out the sundae toppings.

Loaded up! 

Saturday, October 08, 2016

Food boxes from Thistle Farms

In the summer we signed ourselves up to try the food box delivery from Thistle Farms. The deliveries are made up of organic fruits and veggies local when possible, delivered once a week to the door. Here's some of the boxes we've received.

Plums, tomatos, broccoli, potatos, pears, beets, carrots, nectarines......
Side - zucchini, grapes, carrots, green onions, cherries, strawberries...

Kale, cherries, strawberries, grapes, potatos, zucchini, plums, carrots, beets, green onions.....

Bananas, tomatos, lettuce, peas, yellow squash and zuke, strawberries, broccoli, half a cantaloupe, potatos...

Carrots, lettuce, bananas, peas, cherries, beets......

Thistle Farms is also a big presence at the weekly Farmers Market. Check out their website here.

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

Book Club - A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle

"Behind the trees clouds scuttled frantically across the sky.  Every few moments the moon ripped through them, creating wraithlike shadows that raced along the ground."

"Did a shadow fall across the moon, or did the moon simply go out, extinguished as abruptly and completely as a candle?"


For Summer Reading Club - Science Fiction

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Snapshot - Taco Salad

The Mister and I have become quite taken with taco salads this summer.  Actually preferring them to tacos, if you can believe it.

This one below I would love to say was The Mister's as it's so huge, but it was mine.  And there really was lettuce and veggies under all that meat and guacamole, I swear.