Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sunday Share

Cold but beautiful end of our day...there is something so peaceful about watching the clouds change and become illuminated. It's so cold everywhere right now. The daylight is getting longer, but it is still getting dark fairly early.

{iphone photo on my way home}

New shoes for a new opportunity....she's been asking for ballet lessons for awhile and it just so happens that tap lessons are part of the deal. She's been practicing in full attire this weekend. So excited (I'm so excited for her!)

Thanks to Meg for this recipe. I set out all the ingredients, wrote out the recipe, and we made one batch with me directing. I let her make the second batch solo....and she was totally able to do it. I bought the dropper for 99 cents at the pharmacy. Needed to add a little more water because I think the dropper was slightly smaller than what the recipe calls for. Great play dough recipe that makes small batches.
(looks like Barbie is doing the backstroke on our wood floor!)

She was so happy to try something new, and of course something independently. We talked about what leveling something off meant. She measured carefully. I was proud of her.
On another note...She is reading silently more reading aloud. She's started to show interest in chapter books with less pictures. I'm amazed by her abilities every day....I feel blessed.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

two soups

I love soup...and I love making it, especially when it's cold outside. Currently, I have two favorites....Chicken Soup and Broccoli Soup. They are both super easy to make, last for days, freeze well, and taste delicious.

Chicken Soup
{I make it the way I was taught by my mom}

I buy 2 whole chicken breasts, skin on...bones in. This is a lot of white meat.

In a large stock pot I put: whole chicken breasts, 2 sweet onions (vidalia) cut into quarters, 4-6 celery stalks cut into thirds, 4-6 large carrots, cut into thirds and a huge handful of parsley. Just roughly cut it all up and throw it in. Next, I put in just enough cold water so that everything is submerged. Add a few teaspoons of kosher salt, and bring to a boil.
I boil it rapidly for about 10 minutes, skimming off any fat/froth. Turn down to a low simmer for 1-2 hours with lid on, but cracked. Then I turn it off, put the lid completely on and let it sit for at least an hour....more if I have time. After it sits for a while I take out all the chicken and veggies and strain the stock. I shred the chicken and put it back in the stock. (I toss all the rest...not into soggy onions and celery.) I add at least a 1/2 bag of baby carrots and once again bring it to a rolling boil for about 15 minutes or until the carrots are tender. DONE.
I make pastina in a separate pot and add it as I eat my soup...I don't like pasta-bogged mushy soup. Freezes exceptionally well. Many times, I have so much chicken, I use about half of it for another meal.

Broccoli Soup
{Adapted from Apples for Jam by Tessa Kiros}

This soup is so tasty, super healthy (minus the milk/cheese) and goes great with grilled cheese.

I roughly cup up about 6 cups of broccoli (this is a lot), quarter a red onion, quarter about 3 Yukon Gold potatoes (skinned) and throw them into a large stock pot. I add a few cups of chicken stock, a few teaspoons of kosher salt and then add cold water to cover the ingredients. Bring it to a boil, then turn down and simmer on low for at least an hour. Take off the heat. Let it cool slightly. If I notice that I have tons of liquid I pour a little off and reserve it. In small batches, run it through a food processor or blender until smooth. I add about a cup of whole milk or heavy cream when I blend the last batch. I pour it all into a large bowl as I'm working. Last, I pour it all back into my pot and reheat it and mix it well. If it is too thick, I'll add a little of the reserved stock...but rarely need to. Adding a little shredded cheese on top with salt and pepper tastes delicious.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

a week down

today is the 7th of January
enjoying the everyday
trying to take more photos
here is what I saw today...


{an interest in books}

{cardinals: a dude and two ladies}

{newly learned skill, thanks to big sis: what the frog does}


Wednesday, January 6, 2010


It's little moments like...

eating popcorn with my little one
(taken with my iphone)

having a cookie and juice before gymnastics

watching the birds eat on my deck

feeling the heat in my house

browsing the newest Anthropologie catalog (I always wonder where it was shot)

...that make my day complete!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


I was so sad when everyone went back to school/work. The holidays and Christmas were prepared for and thought about for so long in my little world...having them over was a bit of a downer for me. Coupled by freezing cold temperatures just made it a bit more of a bummer. So it goes....

(taken with my iphone: snuggling with my little guy: early morning)

I was so thrilled today to see that Sharilyn had restocked her shop with much coveted address files. I've been wanting one for quite a while, and ordered one in maple. I can't wait to fill out those little cards with friends and family....addresses, email addresses and phone numbers....a little treasure of information. Handcrafted goodness. I've enjoyed reading through her blog as well...good stuff!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

11 months still my heart

My litttle man is 11 months old today...I can hardly believe so much time has passed. I can hardly believe I'm already planning his first birthday party. He is loving black beans, anything sweet, music, his big sis and as of a few days ago, walking. I look at my two little ones and see my heart outside of my body. I see miracles and am reminded how blessed I am...I am reminded how amazing my God is. My faith is instantly renewed.

I came across this little "letter" of sorts through a blog I read, and it moved me, hit me hard....
the idea of "leaning in"....hmmmm....

I was thrilled to get my handmade bag from moop....came today...
pretty package with handwritten note....

I LOVE IT! It is more beautifully made than I could have imagined. The color is dark and rich, and just what I wanted. So happy with it. I need to clean out my old bag, and switch over my wallet to this one I purchased from Anthro.... (in taupe)

Supporting fellow crafters is important to me...and the products they make are so superior to mass-made items.

My amaryllis in full bloom....she bloomed Christmas morning....right on cue!

I put a little birdfeeder outside on our deck, and suddenly our backyard is ALIVE! I could sit all morning and watch the beautiful birds feed. SO MANY! The bluejays love the sunflower seeds. Isn't he handsome?

Cheers to knowing how to build a sustainable fire that allows us to use our woodstove and turn off the heat when it is well below freezing! I'm proud of that accomplishment!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Welcome 2010!

Goodbye 2009, it was a great year!

Here's to walking away from bad habits, guilt, excuses and unnecessary worry....

Cheers to:
> establishing better habits
> eating more whole foods and exercise
> enjoying every moment of my time home
> taking photos and blogging again
> trying new things
> learning how to let things go
> staying organized, one day at a time
> remembering the stories that mean so much
> growing relationships
> being gracious when it's hard to be

A new start is always intimidating and exhilarating at the same time for me....a chance to begin anew while keeping in mind little lessons that have shaped who I am today. I've grown so much this past year in so many areas of my here's to "leaning in" to 2010....bring it on!