Thursday, October 31, 2013

The time is: NOW!

In the last year, I have been asking myself, "If not now, when?" Our life here is fleeting, so it is a good question to ask. Since I was a girl, I thought it would be fun to be 'the house' that passes out full-sized candy bars to trick-or-treaters. Happy Halloween everyone. Only take treats, no tricks.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Meatless Monday mise en place. Tonight we are having mushroom barley 'risotto' with broccoli. (I like to call it faux-sotto)  A dish best served immediately, I have everything in place. When Hubby sends his 'launch' text, I start cooking. It is a delicious ballet of timing.

Sunday, October 20, 2013


Nailed it!  Last week I used a Groupon to treat myself to an appointment at a new Blow Dry Bar in town.  On my own, I can put my hair in a braid, I can even manage a French braid - but the fish tail braid is one I've never tried.
I liked the result and went to YouTube for a tutorial so I could learn to recreate it on my own.

Some things are just best let to the professionals

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

On a tip from The Princess, I made sure Trader Joe's was on my errand list today. I am not only moisturized but, as promised, I 'smell' like fall.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Maple vinegar, ever heard of it? I had not. Even with the great popularity in the last few years, balsamic vinegar is not a flavor I clamor after. But I've given up creamy dressings like blue cheese and ranch to make way for healthier vinaigrettes.
I stumbled on the maple vinegar by accident just a couple of weeks ago. You can see from the photo how much I have enjoyed using it.
My new, go to dressing that adds the flavor of fall to a green salad or a quinoa salad is equal parts good olive oil, maple syrup and maple vinegar. Bon appetite!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Over the course of the last eleven months, I have added a couple of hobbies to my repertoire - amateur cardiologist and amateur nutritionist.  They sort of came to me hand-in-hand.  While I remain squeamish in regard to all things medical, I NEVER fear food.
Last November, Hubby was released from the hospital on Thanksgiving day.  By the time we got home and got settled there was no time or energy left for getting a turkey dinner with the trimmings on the table.  I punted with a few Thanksgiving-like items that we had on hand.  We enjoyed brown rice, roasted butternut squash, cranberry sauce and we were THANKFUL for so many things.  It has become a favorite meal, making several appearances in the months following.
Now fall is upon us and the time seems right to bring it back.  A year ago I would have never believed the 'Convenience-Food-Eating-Little-Girl' in me would ever be ready to let go of the canned, jelly cranberry sauce that I love SO much.  But I am.
I stopped at the grocery store today and picked up a bag of fresh cranberries and this is what happened next  . . . .
I washed them and added them to a saucepan with a cup of water and a half cup of agave syrup that was already at a boil.  Very quickly those berry skins started *popping* away.
 For fun, I added about a cup of blueberries that I happened to have on hand.
 After a few minutes at a nice simmer, I removed the whole bit from the stove and took the immersion blender to it to sort of smooth it out.
It will thicken more as it cools.  If only I knew how to get those fun ridges like the stuff from the can.

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Using some 'sign language', he let me know his intention. I let him know I understood and handed my camera phone to Hubby as a back up....in case I had a problem working one totally foreign to me. The fireworks started going off, he got on one knee. She was a little confused, but quickly caught on and said, 'Yes,' through her smiles and tears. Everyone around us *cheered* The fireworks ended, I handed his camera back, offered congratulations, and we all disbursed into the crowd.  This must be what being part of a flash mob feels like.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Recipe for a perfect afternoon - fresh breeze coming through the open door, favorite fall scented candle burning on the table, documentary Sound City on tv, applique in my lap. Lather, rinse, repeat.