Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Monday, October 31, 2011


Grace - aka Dorothy - had a busy Friday.  We met one of her best friends for a late breakfast of scary face pancakes and then headed to her party at MMO. 

We shopped a clearance sale for her costume last year & I picked up her ruby slippers recently.  One of her favorite stuffed puppies, Purplish, played the part of Toto.

We got to the party and the kids had a costume parade where they also trick-or-treated.  After that, we headed upstairs for some games.

Grace had fun with all of the games.  A couple of things that caught my attention were the spider web game and hopscotch.

For the spider web game, they were supposed to kick these inflated spiders into the spider web.  She didn't hold back & put her newly acquired soccer kicking skills to work {which actually would be nice to see her use more when she's playing a game}.

She also was serious about her hopscotch.

After Grace's school party, we headed home for a break.  Later that afternoon, we headed out for her program at dance class.  The kids had a few minutes of free play before the program started.

Watching the older girls...

Here's Grace as she was getting ready to do her tap routine...

Dorothy got the rest of the weekend off.  Don't let that fool you though.  We were plenty busy, and Grace hung right in there with us.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Create Canvas

Do you pin?  I resisted Pinterest for a while, but curiosity eventually got the best of me.  I requested an invite and immediately started pinning.  I've gotten several ideas {recipes, party ideas, holidays, home, etc.} filed away and look forward to actually doing something with my pins.  One pin that I saw inspired me to be crafty.  Sooner than later.  I haven't made anything lately, and I wanted to finally do something.  Something that wouldn't frustrate me like organizing my scrapbook stuff can.

I have been keeping an eye out for some kind of sign or lettering or something with "create" on it without much luck.  After seeing these canvases, I thought it would be cool to do something along these lines.

I made a quick trip to the store for a canvas, foam brushes, letters & acrylic paint and got started.

Some sanding required...
I am planning to paint my office - that I'm stealing from Pete - a gray color.  I wanted to do something different than just white on white like I saw on Pinterest.  I chose a darker gray.  For a more weathered look, I used a brush & acrylic paint instead of spray paint.

Wall color will be Sherwin Williams Summit Gray
And I wanted my letters to pop.  3 coats of paint & more sanding, and they were ready to glue in place.

Now, back to de-cluttering and emptying the office so we can get it painted.  I'm looking forward to incorporating this into my new space.

So, do you pin?  Have you created anything fun lately?  You can follow me on Pinterest here.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Doe Run Farm

I first learned about CSA's {Community Supported Agriculture} a couple of summers ago.  Pete read about them somewhere and was telling me about them.  I did some reading of my own and decided we should try it out.  I then did a little more research to find a local CSA and found Doe Run FarmWith Doe Run Farm, we could have fresh vegetables that are organic {not as big an issue to us at the time but more so now} and locally grown.  I played with the numbers, and the cost worked out to be not much more than we would spend in the produce section at the grocery store each week.  And the hardest work we'd have to do was get in the car & drive a few miles down the road to pick them up.  No fighting bugs or squash bores.  No traffic jams in the produce section.

One week's haul from fall share
I was a little sad to realize that it was too late for us to take advantage of the summer share that year since it was June by the time we made the CSA discovery.  We decided to keep an eye out for the fall/winter share registration.   We got signed up and anxiously awaited the season.

The fall season arrived, and we had quite an educational experience.  We were familiar with most vegetables, but we did have some new things that we tried out.  It was interesting to try the new things.  Some of our favorites from the season were sweet potatoes and apples.

We were sad to see the season end but were even more excited to get the summer share.  The months between seasons seemed to drag by.  The season finally arrived in May, and we  anxiously awaited each week's box.

One of my fondest memories growing up is the time I spent at my Grandmother's house during the summer.  She had a garden and had several friends that had gardens.  She even had a sister & brother-in-law who farmed.  There was never a shortage of fresh fruit and veggies at her house - both to eat and to can or freeze for later.  I spent many days sharing my time between playing in her pool and helping her can.  We canned beans, cut corn off the cob for freezing, made pickles and jellies.  And when I wasn't helping her, I helped my Mom some too since she cans as well.

Thanks to our CSA share, I've spent a lot of time reflecting back on those days as I've been cooking the goodies from our box.  I've spent less time at the grocery store. {I've only been going to the grocery store once or twice a month during our share season.  I have picked up other staples at a supercenter when I shop for other household items.}  I've spent time in the kitchen with the kids {Sam especially} teaching them more of what I learned.  And I've even put some things up for later.

I'm really glad that we made the CSA discovery.  We've enjoyed delicious food all summer long and will continue to enjoy some of it during the winter months.  This summer's share just ended, and we're already excited for what the fall share will bring.  Sweet potatoes are still one of my favorites!

If you're local and interested in trying out Doe Run Farm, they still have shares available for the fall season.  You can register here until the end of the month or watch for next year's summer registration. 

*I am a paying patron of Doe Run Farm and have not been compensated for this post.  

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Grace's Senior Year

Here we are. The week I've looked forward to and dreaded at the same time. Grace started her senior year (as my Mom likes to call it) at MMO last week. She cried the first day of big kid school because she wanted to get on the bus with big brother Sam and her friends. Those first few days were kind of rough, but she settled down and we enjoyed her last few weeks at home with me. 

I've been looking forward to peaceful mornings to hopefully get things done a little easier. I've dreaded this because I know that things will really kick into high gear now, and kindergarten will be here in no time. Grace woke up the first morning excited and ready for school. Because of the cooler weather, Pete told her she needed to wear pants. She insisted on jeans, which was huge surprise. We fought for months last year about wearing jeans. She even wore tennis shoes...another source of morning frustration. She's growing up I guess. 

Ready to go!

Grace & her teacher

Grace is settling nicely back into the school routine.  She fought me half of last year because she was signed up for 3 days a week and only wanted to go 2 days.  This year, she is already complaining that she is only going 3 days instead of 4 days.  I think she might be a little bit like her school-loving brother.  I think we'll stick with 3 days, and I'll savor these last months {I know, almost year} before she starts kindergarten.

Are your kids settled back into school?

Monday, August 29, 2011

Santa Fe Chicken Burritos

Welcome to...Kim's!  I was recently catching up on some magazine reading and ran across a recipe for Santa Fe Grilled Chicken Soft Tacos.  In my de-clutter mode, I cut it out and added it to my recipe pile.  I liked the fact that it was a recipe that I didn't have to go shopping in order to prepare it.  I did do some bulk shopping recently though, which included burrito sized tortillas, boneless skinless chicken breasts and a pico de gallo salsa.  I originally planned to make a few batches of our chicken fajitas to freeze for later use.  I ran across the recipe again this weekend and made a last minute change.  A good move!

I gathered the necessary ingredients...chili powder, cumin, paprika, crushed red pepper flakes, salt, pepper, brown sugar, olive oil & boneless skinless chicken breasts. {We tend to buy some spices in bulk.  It seems to be cheaper.  We also buy bulk olive oil, but I was finishing off the little bottle we had to buy on vacation.}

Measure the spices and brown sugar into a bowl.

Mix them together using a whisk or fork.

Add the olive oil & mix together.  The mixture will be crumbly paste-like.  Now, it's time to get your hands dirty...rub both sides of each chicken breast with the seasoning.

Let the chicken sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.  Grill over medium heat until done.  Let sit 5 minutes before thinly slicing.

While the chicken was marinading, Pete cut up some of the peppers and onions from our CSA to grill while he was grilling the chicken.  We loaded our tortillas with pinto beans, grilled chicken, grilled onions & peppers, cheese, sour cream, pico de gallo salsa {I sampled this in-store & loved the flavor - spicy but not too - as well as the texture.  It isn't mushy like a lot of salsas are.} & even a few fresh tomato chunks.  I then learned that I have mad burrito wrapping skills.

We also had tortilla chips with pico de gallo salsa and a dab of guacamole.  The burritos. were. awesome.  They were a big hit with the kids and Pete too.  So big a hit that I used the rest of the pack of chicken and now have 2 dinners' worth {and lunch too with leftovers} marinating in the freezer.  They all raved that it was great and as good as going to one of those burrito places.  I'm happy to have a new Mexican recipe to add to my collection.

Santa Fe Chicken Burritos
Adapted from All You's Santa Fe Grilled Chicken Soft Tacos

2 tbsp chili powder
2 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp paprika
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1 tbsp firmly packed brown sugar
2 tbsp olive oil
2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts
6-8 burrito sized tortillas

Extras: grilled onions & peppers, pinto beans, cheese, sour cream, pico de gallo, lettuce, olives and/or whatever else you like in your burrito

In a small bowl, mix chili powder, cumin, paprika, red pepper, salt, pepper & brown sugar.  Stir in oil until moistened & crumbly.

Rub the seasoning on both sides of chicken breasts.  Let sit at room temperature up for 30 minutes {or freeze for later}.

Grill chicken over medium heat until done.  Let sit for 5 minutes before thinly slicing.

Serve with tortillas and desired extras.