At least that’s what I did this weekend.
night night April 29, 2010
Jack is 1/2 way to three years old. He is an active boy who loves books.
I am 4 months into being 27. I am an active woman who loves books.
Going to the library is something we love to do together and I hope, something that will continue for years to come. I can remember going to the library as kids in the summer time. Spending as much time there as possible before my brother couldn’t handle being quiet anymore. We would all check out as many books as possible and then trade them between each other before they had to go back the next week.
This week Jack and I rode our bike to the library and while he played I picked out his books for the next two weeks. In addition to the normal fire engine, trucks, colors, shapes, and train books I also got The Wind in the Willows. I have wanted to read something that continues on each night. Something to look forward to, a story to follow along. I don’t know if this is the right book or not, but for now I am enjoying it and he is enjoying the extended bed-time rituals.
Anyone out there read to their kids before bed each night? Anyone have a good book suggestion?
A note: having read it for 3 nights now, I am thinking it is a no. I like it, but it doesn’t seem to interest him at all. Needing suggestions!
Rhubarb….again April 22, 2010
seriously, look at this recipe!! Rhubarb Ice cream!?! At least my plants are looking like this!
Growing but still really small.
And yet another!!! recipe that looks good.
armadillo, camarillo, picadillo April 21, 2010
I love to concoct a good recipe or put together the weeks menu without having to go to the store. This concoction is a direct result of taking freezer inventory and extras that have been in the fridge from our missions trip 2 weeks ago.
Green Pepper Picadillo
(make sure to click the link for a description!)
Green peppers are something our garden grows exceedingly well. The first two times I prepped the peppers for freezing I dumped them into freezer bags after blanching. Obviously this just gave me a huge block of greenpepper mush… not exactly easy to use. Now I separate the peppers out on cookie sheets and freeze them individually, putting them into freezer bags after they are solid. This is one of the fastest and easiest ways to “preserve” them and it is so easy to grab a handful and throw them into the skillet. However, this recipe allowed me to use up one bag of green pepper mush
1 bag of green pepper mush (probably a total of 6 green peppers) chopped
2 onions chopped
3 cloves garlic minced
2 stalks celery chopped
Lard (or fat of some kind, evoo, butter. you get the picture)
1 lb ground meat (I used sausage, but could very well have been something else)
1 1/2 cup salsa (the “temperature” you use here will dictate the heat of the dish)
3/4 cup of pearled barley ( or rice )
1 1/2 cup water (or more)
1/3 cup raisins
salt and pepper
Saute the green peppers, onions, garlic and celery with your fat.
Add the ground meat to mixture and cook, pour off excess grease and let mixture cool slightly
Combine cooled meat mixture with salsa, barley, raisins and water.
Flavor with spices. (I don’t want to put in measurements, because I didn’t measure, just taste it and wing it!)
Place everything in a 13 x 9 pan and cover with foil.
Cook at 350 till the water has been absorbed, 40 min or so
I topped ours with a little bit of shredded cheddar cheese.
Next time I think I will add some carrots, cabbage or other veggies. I felt it was a little meat heavy on the dish ratio, but I have a very small meat ratio. Otherwise, it was delicious, fairly good on the healthy level and yummy. Let me know if you give it a try, I would love to hear your take.
lessons learned April 14, 2010
I just spent the past week cooking for 40 people, three meals a day. 30 of those people were high school kids. During the week I learned a few things, some important and others not so much. Some food related and others about life.
- In the kitchen, everyone is a friend. Age, foodie knowledge, ability, music tastes…they are all nominal compared to the fact that we are working together to feed an army.
- The amount of dishes generated when cooking like this is HUGE. Always have a separate dinner clean up crew!
- It is so much easier to teach when doing what you are teaching. Both living out what you teach and actually showing hands on while giving the instructions
- People love a good shortcut
- Find what a person is good at and then use it! It will make them happy to excel at something and you happy to not be doing it.
- I am pretty sure that listening to oldies while cooking is the best music choice. (Right toots?)
- 4 full size pans of lasagna is 1 pan to many, especially when you already have leftover enchiladas and jambalaya from previous meals.
- Never assume that people know what green onions look like, or that they know what part of the onion you want to use.
- Dancing and singing together will break down any walls or inhibitions between people
- Story telling is not just for bed-time, it is a good skill to have for any time and at any age
- Cooking bacon in the oven is by far the best/easiest and cleanest way to do it.
I have been a chaperone on this particular mission/service trip for 8 years, 7 of them have been with Nater. This was our second year having LJ with us for part of the time and it was the first year I have been involved with the kids in the evening. Generally up before everyone to make breakfast, work all day at the job site, back early to cook dinner and after dinner prep for the next days meals I would take my alone time while everyone else was together. This year I was a leader of a very informal small group. That should read informal leader of a small group. I was, and still am, blown away by the maturity and insight of these girls. I have no idea how I could have been any kind of positive teacher when they were all teaching me during each of our discussions. The questions they asked and then consequently answered themselves were things I still question and ask myself! With LJ, cooking, working and leading, the trip as a whole was exhausting, but the times with this small group of girls made it very worthwhile. I hope that someday each of them will be able to be the leader for their own small group of highschool girls and be impressed as much as I was.
boot-less April 3, 2010
We have a very wet and muddy backyard. Boots are a necessity 11 months out of the year, ok that might be a slight exaggeration but gives you an idea of what I mean. Our barn/muck/mud/snow/puddle boots get a good workout year round and as a mother of a two year old I love that he can put them on and take them off himself.
Except of course when I see him like this.
I asked lj where the other boot was and all I could discern was tree, by the tree.
This is where I found it
And this little boy knew that I was not too excited about the status of his sock.