Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Jalapeno and Honey. Filed under "Who Knew?"

Turns out that jalapeno and honey is freaking delicious.
Officially on my list of "Who Knew?"
I was inspired by an appetizer at a friend's house the other day, a delicious combination of honey, jalapeno and cream cheese on Ritz crackers (perhaps I should get that recipe to share on here as well!).
So tonight I made this, another dish full of fall colors:
To make, preheat your oven to 400 degrees, peel and cut two sweet potatoes, toss with olive oil and cinnamon and bake for 18 minutes.
While they are baking heat olive oil in a skillet and add a package of frozen corn, when heated through add 1/2 a large onion and two cloves of garlic, minced.
Sautee for about 5 minutes, then add a can of black beans, half a can of sliced jalapenos (chopped), 1/4 cup of honey, 1 1/2 teaspoons of nutmeg and 1 1/2 teaspoons of cumin.
When the sweet potatoes are done add them to the skillet and gently stir (don't crush the sweet potatoes).
Serve with flour tortillas for wrapping (mine are homemade from this recipe, with no alterations because it is absolutely phenomenal, I use the vegetable oil), and a mix of shredded cheddar and feta cheese.
I am a mostly non-meat eater so I'm always trying to come up with delicious meat free meals that pass the test with the husbando. This was a total hit!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Rainy Day Activity!

2 year old stuck in the house all day.
One would think that the toddler would crack first, but truly, it's usually the parent who is in the house with the toddler that starts to feel those walls closing in.
While sometimes this inspires nothing but an urge to turn on a movie, it does occasionally spark a creative project just before turning to madness.
I give you, the create-a-village project:
It is ideal for learning shapes and colors, and super easy.
I just cut a few triangles, squares, and vaguely "tree" shaped pieces out of construction paper and after we constructed our village I glued them together.
She liked it so much that I'm thinking I will do a version made out of felt (since the construction paper is easily destroyed by a toddler), with velcro on the back for a more permanent "shapes and colors" project.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Halloween Dinner!

Some days it is really hard to come up with something that you and your kids will eat, without sacrificing flavor and food quality. The husbando and I work super hard to expose our daughter to all kinds of tastes/textures and we work especially hard to make sure that almost everything is homemade.
However, sometimes I feel like the poor kid is missing out on some fun kid-like stuff. For example, she has no idea that chicken can come in dinosaur shaped nuggets!
So tonight was a quality compromise of delicious adult food, and fun little kid presentation.
We had homemade naan bread (look for a post on that when I have someone to "shoot" it for me), black bean hummus, sweet potato fries and assorted cheeses for dinner.
For the adults it looked like this:
And for the 2-year old?
Creepy Halloween Monster!!
Complete with fangs, black eyes, and fake ketchup blood. Which, obviously, my two year old called hair, but the husbando and I got a quality creepy laugh out of it.
PS For anyone who is interested, the beer is Mayflower IPA, an excellent beer bought in a growler straight from the brewery. Which I will post about soon. Awesome place!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Rickrack Fall banner

I was going to post this as a DIY, but the whole purpose of the "Autumn" rickrack banner for me is to use up scraps of fabric, and just have fun! The backing on each banner piece is an old nightgown, so no need to sew the seams (sweet!), and all the other fabrics are scraps.
The best part about a banner like this is that it's supposed to look "country homemade", so if you're just learning how to sew this is the perfect project. Have fun with color, pattern mixing etc.
As I look at the photos I think that mine is a little too plain, might have to be jazzed up with a fabric flower or two...hmmmm.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Denim Shirt

This is more of a personal reminder for when I forget how I like to wear my denim shirt.
It's one of those items of clothing that I always WANT to wear but I have a hard time putting together the right outfit with it, something that doesn't make me feel like a rodeo clown. Especially if I plan on going in to work or, you know, seeing someone other than my two year old.
Miraculously I managed to pull this together this morning and felt quite good in it, so next time I'm jonesing for some denim-on-top this is how I'll do it:
Note the reappearance of my new fave mustard shoe, and the major improvement in photo framing by husbando! Go baby, go!

Monday, September 19, 2011

20 minute fall wreath

Easiest wreath ever!
First, purchase a straw wreath wrapped in plastic. They are $2.99 for a 14" wreath at A.C. Moore, like 1/3 of the cost of a similar sized styrofoam one. I don't know why since they're much sturdier and have an overall more appealing shape.
Second, cut long strips of a fall-colored fabric and wrap them around the wreath, knotting each new piece to the already wrapped ones like so:
If you leave the plastic on, you will avoid getting stabbed by renegade pieces of straw, which is always good.
Third step, create a few fabric flowers from loose bits of fabric, old jeans, t-shirts, anything that matches your fall motif. All you have to do is cut two inch wide strips and twist them, keep twisting and they will curl in on themselves to create these delightful flowers. Then hot glue those bad boys to your wreath and VOILA:
I braided some of the leftover fabric to hang the wreath with, but I probably would have preferred to use a really pretty piece of ribbon. So there you have it! Enjoy!

Sunday, September 18, 2011


Thank you to the husbando for delivering to me the most glorious beer ever created:
Dogfish Head, you have created hoppy goodness personified in 12 ounces of glorious amber splendor. I can't thank you enough.
Forever your servant,

Friday, September 16, 2011

A claustrophobic mother's "fort"

My lovely 2 year old asked me for a fort the other day.
I've been dreading this moment.
Not because I don't like to expend energy on my child, truth be told I love running around doing all the fun kiddie stuff we don't get to do anymore as adults.
But I'm not a big fan of tight spaces. And the forts of my childhood were always couch cushions stretching from the sofa to the coffee table.
THIS my friends, is a freakin' fort:
It's pretty much a two bedroom, probably bigger than most Manhattan apartments. Here are the keys: 1. if you have a tent in your house, even one of the little ones for toys like I have here, USE it! Wow it creates more space. 2. To unite your tons of sheets, nothing does the job like old fashioned wooden clothespins.
3. The ultimate secret key? An ironing board:
As seen here from the inside, it creates a whole wall, nice and high up off the ground.
It was more like a Bedouin tent than a fort, but it was glorious! Did she lose interest after about an hour and a half? Yes, yes she did.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

A Big Peach

Awesome Just Write idea, about free flow blogging here, that I found via another amazing blog space! Seemed like a good thing to do to kickstart my blogging after the hiatus for this weekend's wedding:

Life is good.
At the grocery store picking up some lunch and I found the worlds biggest peach, assuredly James and his friends reside in here. Well, not for long, since I'm about to decimate it, in all of its juicy goodness.
You have to take the little things in life and relish them, enjoy them, let them remind you that in the long run, past all of the trials the world that we live in is a good one, fruitful and accommodating.
Sure, this morning my daughter threw up all over the car while I was on the way to drop her off with my stepfather for the day.
Sure, it ruined my work outfit and I had to scrounge through my mom's closet to find a new one.
Sure, at work when I was picking up my laptop out of a drawer the strap on the dress I stole from my mom broke off.
But you know what? My daughter (with all of her throw-uppy goodness) is an amazing, happy, vibrant little being who brings joy to my life, I found a safety pin in my purse to fix my strap, and then of course there is the giant peach (almost completely gone at this point in the post).

When I remember to relish what I receive instead of dwelling on my obstacles the truth shines through:
Life is good!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Two minutes til guests arrive??

Yesterday we had the pleasure of hosting one of husbando's friends and his family for a BBQ, I love hanging out with other couples who have kids (most of our friends are still fancy free), because I don't worry as much about my house, I leave the toys everywhere when they come over, I don't apologize when my daughter grabs someone's leg and forcibly drags them in to a room. It's so much more relaxing!
But I did look at my table, with a white table cloth on it, and a basket of rolls (homemade from this recipe) and it just looked bare. I had no flowers in the house, this is the seasonal "dead zone" so I couldn't do a quick theme piece, so I did this:
Got to showcase my beautiful tea cups (though I wish I had one with a pattern to set it off), and it was a use for the 1,000 fabric flowers I have hanging around the house!