Sunday, May 8, 2011

Well. Its been awhile, hasn't it?

I know that I have disappointed my 3-4 readers by not keeping up with this blog, but today I am inspired.  Ami J, Ami N and I have done a lot of work in the yards (front and back), and I thought you, kind readers, might want to see what we have done.  So I am going to try to put up some before and afters here...or some progressions...enjoy.  And as the nice weather progresses, I shall try to keep up.

 These next few are general pictures of the back yard in early April.  The skies are grey, nothing has bloomed, and the yard has just been raked (I think we raked up about 20 bags of leaves and such) and nothing has been planted.  The pretty pics will follow below.

Not pretty.

Ok.  Notice the gross fence.  We can't replace it right now, so we are doing what we can to cover it...

The rock border is made up of rocks that we dug up from a 3x3 space in the corner...

Wood slabs courtesy of TH.  We need more...see next picture.  But they make a lovely path, I think

See?  We ran out.  Those are Ave's feet.


We painted these birdhouses and are trying to use them to "plug up" the holes in the fence

That's it for now, but I think this week's plan is to buy more birdhouses to randomly hang on the fence to add some more color, buy some more strawberry plants for the second bed (I am obsessive about strawberries) and I think we will plant the cucumber plants I have growing inside, and maybe chuck in some tomato plants.  This will be it for our garden here.  CSA farm share, here we come. 

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Brussel Sprout Slaw

This dish is out of the Cooking Light magazine I bought the other day. Couldn't be easier or more delicious. And no mayo so its good for you!  Sprouts, apple, craisins, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper. Done.

There is maple glazed chicken cooking right now too, but this looked so good I couldn't wait to try it. :)

Footnote...the maple glazed chicken was pretty good too.  

You know what's a b*tch?

Cooking for one.  I don't know how.  I've never been one, really.  Yes, I have the kids, but rarely do they eat anything out of the ordinary that I might cook.  Yes, I can cook extra and eat it for meals during the week, but usually what I do is cook it, realize it tastes fantastic and eat too much.  Especially with dessert. 

Tonight I am trying something new.  I cooked individual apple crisps in little ramekins...  I did make 2, but even if I eat them both, its better than eating a whole pan, right?

Baby steps.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

no cooking today

the only thing I had all the ingredients for were cookies.  cookies aren't a challenge AND I am back to the gym tomorrow and trying to eat much better so cookies would sort of defeat the purpose.  I've already made chili to eat as lunches this week so....I am going to do some research and planning and get back to cooking next week.

Peace out.
Oh and wish me luck getting back in the gym habit.  I have totally fallen off the wagon, and I need to get back in the game.  Not getting any younger, you know.  Although, I'm not getting any older either.  I decided.  I'm just going to stay right where I am.  :)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

I am daydreaming right now

Truth be told, I am sitting in a very quiet building waiting for a work function to start in an hour, and I am looking out the window and it looks very much like fall outside.  It IS very much fall outside.  I am sitting here with my calendar in front of me trying to plan out the next few months of my life and I am daydreaming about free time.  Its such a luxury, isn't it?  I am also thinking about a conversation I had with a good friend of mine the other day about someone he knows that is a pastry chef.  The road not travelled for me...mainly because it didn't ever occur to me at college age that I might want a career like that.  He was talking about the commercial kitchen she bakes in and I was practically drooling.  So what's the lesson here?  Carve out more free time to bake?  Return to school to become a pastry chef?  There is a little voice in my head sometimes that says "own a bakery". 

I think I am going to make red velvet cake this weekend.  Probably the one from the Paula Deen cookbook I have.  Maybe I will make several things this weekend.  I love to bake when it gets cold.  And its starting to...

PS.  Here's the view I'm looking out at...

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Just so you don't think I have been slacking

With this cooking/baking at least once a week thing, I haven't.  I didn't take pictures, but last weekend I decided to make soup.  So I made a really basic chicken soup and added some orzo pasta.  It was fine.  But then I heard someone talking about chili at work the next day and decided I wanted some chili...but I already had all the soup. So...I made the chili and added some of the soup to it. Highly unorthodox, I know.  But it was good. 

Pear and Apple Tart

I've made this recipe twice now.  Its a Martha Stewart recipe, and to be honest, I didn't follow it to the letter.  I have no idea how she could have used all the fruit that the recipe called for.  So I used what fit.  Its such a simple recipe and so good that I think pecans and phillo dough are going to be things that I keep on hand so I can make it whenever I want. 

Here's the first time I made layer the dough 4 or 5 times with an entire stick of butter (yowza) and spices and pecans.  And breadcrumbs, actually.  Maybe that's just to hold everything together.  It was SO good. 

I highly recommend.  Two thumbs up.  And I am certain I could get recommendations if you wanted them.  PS.  Its also really good the next day for breakfast.  Ask me how I know. :)