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Showing posts from May, 2011

Cooking Through My CSA Box

This is the second week of our 20 week CSA harvest, and these first two weeks have been abundant. That's an understatement. We share a Veggie Lover Box and 50% of it is more than enough for our family for one week. It's amazing to think that some families could eat all that's in there in one week! This week we received: mizuna, spring onions, purple onions, turnips, radishes, strawberries, swiss chard, butter lettuce, kohlrabi, cilantro, mint, chives, kale, and a spring lettuce mix. Anyway, I spent most of the afternoon cooking away the greens so that I could save them for dishes later in the week, and also for freezing (spinach). I recently found these directions helpful for a quick cook, called a blanch, but find that I'm just as happy to saute, cool, and bag.
It's funny, I never considered myself a cook, I rarely follow a recipe *unless it's gluten-free* and just toss things together as I'm inspired by (or out of) a certain ingredient! I remember that I l…

Visual Monday: Sewing

This week I have sewing on the brain. A big portion of my sewing time is spent washing, drying, ironing, and cutting. The actual machine use is really only about 20% of the actual time it takes to make something. I recently decided to cut out a bunch of patterns and projects all at once and then iron, that of which took me 3 hours total! Once I get around to finding the day and time to put all the pieces together with the machine I imagine I could get all 15 projects done in one day. As for now, they're atop the computer desk in my studio (re: office that is the size of a pin head), waiting patiently. I love all these 'sewing' ideas, color palettes, and the final result. Oh yeah, and I totally need an armoire-studio. Stat. photocredits

{This Moment}

Un gelato.

In Soulemama's words:A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Movie Review: Waste Land

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Stefan and I rarely watch movies all the way through in one night. Generally we try to only spend 30 minutes watching TV a night. Sometimes we don't at all, and one night a week we spend 60 minutes watching House. It's very rare a film can keep our attention gripped long enough that we don't feel we're 'wasting our time' watching it for its entirety. Waste Land was one of those gems that we gave a whole 90 minutes to.
The movie Waste Land is a fantastic documentary about Brazillian artist Vik Muniz, who goes to the largest dump in the world, Jardim Garmacho and not only develops relationships with the people who work there, "pickers" (of recyclable materials), but also to recreate famous portraits through using only the materials found in the dump, photographing them, and then investing in the lives of those who work there with the profits. Sort of a hefty plot, I suppose, but really a tear-jerker movie and an awesome 'true life' sto…

Visual Monday: CSA

Today is the first pick-up of the 2011 Community CROPS CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) and our second year of splitting a Veggie Lovers' box with another family. The family who we're sharing it with this year and ours went to a potluck out at the farm last night and enjoyed food, a farm tour, meeting the chickens, and just generally digging around in the dirt outside, and smelling/seeing the fresh growing goodies we'll get in weeks to come. I've written quite a bit on CSAs and I am one happy person to be picking it up this week! I need a little fresh veggie inspiration in the kitchen! Just one more thing to bring Spring officially to our neck of the woods. Enjoy the pics.
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{This Moment}

Just checkin' in with your daily stink-face. Bring it.

Craft Time: A few babies....

I know a. lot. of babies coming in the next 6 months or so, 1 whom just had her birthday last week, another who will be coming anytime (today?), another in a few weeks, and on and on they go. And most of them are girls! That means I get to knit these fabulous bonnets, which tagged along with a package of diapers, is my favorite frugal (and simple) baby shower gift. I whipped up three of these puppies in three days, and whoops, one was too big for any baby. Best give that one to Ani for this winter. :)
This is another fun project I'd had in my head, and although it's not finished quite yet, it was inspired by this one by one of my favorite bloggers. I think I'm going to braid strips of fabric and put them up and down (as shown in the picture, instead of horizontal, vertically 'stacked') and place them in Lukka's room. He loves playing with them and I love the vintage wool, colors and design. I was able to receive a bunch of this fabric from a friend's mother …

Square Foot Garden Plots

Stefan has wanted to implement a large garden in what-ever space we're in for years now. Since we move approximately once a year and have a membership to a local CSA, I have little motivation to also do it in our backyard as well. Unless you count hunting for chicken eggs in our backyard as 'urban gardening'. Well we've got big dogs that hop the fence and as far as I know it none of them are interested in greens, but chickens, that might be another issue...

We decided if he did the majority of the work, I could harvest and photograph and call it 'mine'. Deal! He built all these boxes (5, total), with the exception of one, from a spare shelf we had in our basement, and filled it with soil, unfortunately not the kind we were after, but close enough. We followed Amy's directionson square foot gardening.

We also reseeded our grass in the backyard and after religiously watering each section for 20 minutes a day and a bit of sunlight, we've had great luck with …

Movie Review: Black Swan

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Well this was certainly...a hard movie to digest. If you've heard anything of Black Swan, it's probably the negatives like the ridiculous 'soft' pornographic nature, the gruesome scenes, and the chilling music from Swan Lake. Okay, that last one wasn't a negative, in fact the beautiful music made the story that much more haunting. I was, however, displeased. The story is about a ballerina who gets to become the star, or principle dancer, in a New York City production of Swan Lake. Her perfectionism spirals into overwork and exhaustion mentally and physically, and erupts to produce horrifying dreams, hallucinations, and very awkward girl-on-girl scenes...that may or may not have existed. I, for one, would not want any male I knew watching this movie. It's simply too graphic, and I thought it should have been rated higher than an R for the perverse scenes it entailed. I don't even think I'd recommend it to any woman, either, simply because the b…

Visual Monday: Market

This {Visual Monday} is inspired by our local Farmer's Markets around town. Right now in our little city we have 4 or 5 going every week. I've gone to the first two weeks, but have only made it to one of the markets, this one to be exact. I love the atmosphere, the music playing on the street corners, the fresh smells, and of course my kids and I love samples and just-picked-this-morning food. Of course it's still early for crops here, mostly radishes, eggs, and asparagus are the main offerings. Give it a month and the stall spots will be crammed and people will be struggling to find a space to step aside and eat their kolache. And hey! Even my friend, Owl People to you, is there sellin' her beautiful kid wares! Do you go to Farmer's Markets? What do you like best about them?


*All images found via weheartit.com*
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Um. Back to regular programming Monday morning. Blogger's been up and down the past 48 hours and I have no patience left for silly machines. Have a good weekend!

Imagine....

Eesh, I promised these yesterday but here in Nebraska we've had 2 days of unseasonably hot days (um, over 100 degrees about 2 months early) and no AC unit in our house...needless to say the most I got done was sweating 5 lbs off laying on the couch. But now the weather has turned, the AC units are (mostly) working, and I have an appetite again. Yeah. I'm kind of a baby in the humid Nebraska heat but I really wanted to write this for you, so here I am. *** Last week I gave a few tips on quality toys using the 'less is more' idea. Today I'm sharing the 5 top 'imagination' toys I can think of that are 1) easy to come by 2) easy to store and 3) give hours of entertainment and heaps of imagination:
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DRESS UP CLOTHES are some of the most entertaining 'toys' your children will ever have. We use an wooden crate to store our dress up clothes (hats, masks, scarves, necklaces, etc.) though it's getting overflowing. I love this idea of a dress up han…

Visual Monday: Garden

This weekend Stefan created a little square foot garden plot enclosed with chicken wire to add to our re-seeded backyard. He did an excellent job on it and Lukka even helped to put the seeds in. So far we have onions, cucs, dill, cilantro, corn, carrots, and lettuce. We'll see how it does. He wanted a big garden but I was a little hesitant since I didn't want to spend a huge amount of time and effort re-vamping a backyard that isn't even ours for a year and a half! This square foot garden idea was the perfect compromise. We'll also be getting a 1/2 share of our Veggie Lover's CSA box, so we won't be without. Enjoy!


all images via weheartit.com

{This Moment}

From Soulemama's blog:A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

On Toys, Clutter, and Amazing Parenting Tricks

photocreditStefan and I long ago decided we didn't want the kids to have massive amounts of toys. We even have a few rules to go along with this general principle: Every Christmas & Birthday the kid(s) will receive: Something to Wear, Something to Read, Something to Play With. Quality over quantity.Imagination toys (and educational games) preferred over noise/character-driven toys.Small amounts at a time in the house.The reasons are varied, we have a small house and won't be upsizing; I want our grandkids to be able to enjoy the quality toys their parents played with (less in the land-fill!); toys that provide hours of entertainment being 10 different things in a day are more adaptable to a growing and learning child rather than a toy that can only be one thing (think blocks over super-heroes);lower expectations mean less tantrums!; and like adults who get overwhelmed with clutter, kids get overwhelmed by busy, messy rooms and massive amounts of things.
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Recipe: Corn Bread Salad

When you make a dish almost (if not definitely) weekly, it needs to be shared. It's begging to be eaten and loved by your friends, family, and um, everyone else. A lady at my church has been recently opening her house to a few new friends and I get to be one of them. She is a fantastic cook and loves to entertain, and frankly, I love to eat and be entertained! Awhile back she made this as a side dish and I haven't stopped making it since (she gives us all the recipes for everything she makes those nights). I must have made it at least 10 times since late February. That is not an exaggeration, either.Without further ado, I give you the best side/salad dish ever: Corn Bread Salad! *1 loaf prepared cornbread, left out for several hours (you want it harder) *1 red onion, diced *1/2 lb bacon, cooked and crumbled *1 tomato, diced (optional) *2 jalapeƱos, seeded and minced *1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded *3/4 cup celery, diced (I usually add 1 or 1 1/2 cup, love the crunchy texture!) *1/2 cu…

Movie Review: Water for Elephants

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Remember this review a little while back? Well now the film is out and with an all-star cast this didn't disappoint. I'll be blunt and tell you I almost always like the book more than the movie, simply because the movies tend to...ah....have to....skip a lot of stuff that is usually character background. This movie floated over almost every relationship the main character, Jacob, has except his love-attraction. This is a little disappointing since a large part of his time on the travelling circus is getting to know his room-mate, Water, and his older friend, Camel. There was almost no point in the movie that explained how they became friends compared to the book. I feel that unless I'd read the book I wouldn't know why, how, or who his closest friends were.
Regardless, the visual 'prettiness' of the 30's circus was not lost, and the movie was fun to see on the big screen. Although I gave the book 4 out of 5 stars, this wouldn't be one I'd…