Sunday, February 17, 2019

January Captures

Here we are... Halfway through February and I'm just getting around to sharing my January captures. It was a good camera month for me. I made space for photography, and that always makes me happier. Things warmed up a bit this weekend and while many of these photos are icy, I'm currently basking in a sunny living room with lots of sunlight blinding my eyes. No complaints. Oh, and yes, I fully intend on some sunlit napping as soon as I press "Publish" on this puppy... So... Gute Nacht!

Friday, February 15, 2019

Take 331

7 Quick Takes Friday
--- 1 ---
It's Friday! Sometimes I walk into the weekend (which begin on Fridays for me) with a list a mile long and the urge to conquer all. Some Fridays, like last week, I run straight into Friday with no plan and giving not a care. I sat at a coffee shop and just read. And that was good. But this weekend? It's almost lunch time and I'm still bumbling along feeling a little blindfolded and swinging at the concept of what I want for my day off... which seems too hard to figure out...  kinda like Rowan:

--- 2 ---
Rowan: "I'm going to be married someday!"
George: "I'm not! I'm going to be a race car driver!"
Rowan: "Actually, I'm going to be a unicorn."

So, you know. We set our sights high in this family! :)
--- 3 ---
You know those pressurized stand-up toothpaste dispensers? In my mind they're always tri-colored toothpastes. I miss them. I saw one over Christmas in the states and I canNOT even tell you how much toothpaste goo is dealt with in my normal course of parenting. It's kind of unreal. Ick.
--- 4 ---
This photo is from all the way in October... We haven't played with these very much recent, but check this out:
My G. This kid is just like me. He's confused when any routine changes, he knows where all the things belong, and has begun following my own personal rule of "new clothes get hung on the left" in his closet. Sigh. and LOL.
--- 5 ---
At our grocery store (Lidl), you can buy a ready-to-make (think Blue Apron) box from the freezer aisle. Fun, no? I didn't buy it because it's for 2 people... and because I like to cook. But fun nonetheless.
--- 6 ---
Also... it's a small thing, but boneless chicken thighs are basically not a thing here. One of my strong dislikes? Finding inedible pieces from the chicken thigh in my stew in the crockpot. But the dark meat is always the best... so I deal. But if I had that boneless chicken thigh? Problem solved. #CookingDreams
--- 7 ---
Ever get that nagging feeling....?

Where the heck did I put my glasses
Am I too young for this? Apparently not. But that's ok. I eventually find them.

Happy Friday!

Friday, February 08, 2019

Take 330

7 Quick Takes Friday
--- 1 ---
I don't know what your tricks are for getting your kids to smile, but my Dad, in particularly tough moments where I was irritated about something as a child would taunt, "Oh baby... don't smile! Don't smile, baby!" and I loved it. And hated it. And wanted to scream... but I always ended up smiling. Well, let the record show that it is the absolute best way for getting my children to smile their real smiles for the camera. 

I feel like history is definitely repeating itself. And it's ok, because it's all smiles.
--- 2 ---
In other parenthood moments, I have more than a few times researched cakes on Pinterest. Last month was George's birthday and I went back to Pinterest... and you know what? Worth nothing. Nothing! Thank you, kindly, Pinterest for photos of unbelievably professional nothing-but-fondant and several tiers. Totally annoying. I need Pinterest for Real People. This Mama don't do Fondant.
--- 3 ---
Speaking of Mamas, take a moment and read my sister's article about being a working Mama. I look up to Melanie! She's amazing. A loving Mama and amazing Photographer. And yes, Mamas, you're doing great! 
--- 4 ---
Want a little fun? Click here, choose the Episode from December 21, 2018, and then fast forward to minute 8. It's so much fun. I'm fully enjoying The Moth these days.
--- 5 ---
Brian shared This Article with me this week. It's a lot of information, but it talks about time creating happiness--not money. Today was Friday, and I worked to create space and happiness today, reading a book at a coffee shop, sleeping in a little, and only doing one load of laundry. The article is 6 parts and not short, but it's worth the time... as say, even though I haven't read all of it.
--- 6 ---
While discussing this article with a friend, he directed me to this quote:

When asked what surprised him about humanity the most, the Dalai Lama replied:

“Man. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.”
--- 7 ---
So yes, I've been thinking about happiness. I've been thinking about peace... My practice of physical therapy to keep my muscles loose. My choice of Friday activities on my day off (read: Don't work all day long. It's not worth it.) Wishing you and yours happiness! Time. People you love. And real joy.

Happy Friday!

PS- sorry about no photos this week...

Monday, February 04, 2019

Pescatarian January

Don't worry. This is not a food blog. This will not become a food blog. But believe me, I hope you like them as much as I do... because I love food blogs. I'm just here to share with you what our January was like as a pescatarian family ... who also observed Dry January.

Quick Take-aways:

  • It was nice to realize how little meat I typically serve. Mostly? I missed weekend meals with meat. But our weeknights are often meat-free with no complaints.
  • I did struggle to stay creative, even though I really enjoyed the challenge of trying new things.
  • You'll be able to tell, but I used this month as an excuse to crack open my Smitten Kitchen cookbook... and it did not disappoint. They were by far my favorite meals.
  • I can't believe how little glass recycle we had because we were a dry household. Wow.
  • Also... I had almost no headaches. Amazing.
  • Studies show that after observing dry January, drinking levels typically stay lower throughout the entire year. After a month, I must say that I can see why... And that I plan to do it again... but not this month. ;) 
And now... Here's what we ate! With a few leftover nights in between...

  1. Crustless QuicheSimple Crusty Bread and grapes
  2. Emmentaler grilled sandwich with sweet and sour red onions (sautéed) and vinegar slaw with cucumber and dill (Source for both: The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook
  3. Galette with roasted carrots & sweet potatoes and caramelized red onions (leftover from #2) (Source: The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook) with grapes
  4. Roasted Salmon with Pesto, pesto pasta & steamed broccoli
  5. Sweet Peas and Shells Alfredo (Source: The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook)
  6. Leek Fritters (Source: The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook) with Fried Eggs and Orange Slices
  7. Pesto Pizza with peppers and onion
  8. Curry & grape tuna sandwiches with Sweet Potato Fries & Southern Carolina Slaw
  9. Clam Chowder with more Simple Crusty Bread
  10. Shrimp Fried Rice (My Mom's recipe... the secret? Buy dark soy sauce.)
  11. White Bean Chili 
  12. Black Bean Confetti Salad (Smitten Kitchen)
  13. Egg Bake
  14. Black Bean Tacos (always with avocado.)
  15. Chick Pea & Kale Curry
  16. Tofu Chinese Broccoli (Wished I had made double the sauce and added it to the whole dish.)
  17. Roasted Salmon & Brussels Sprouts
  18. Black Bean Burritos
  19. Vegetarian Cassoulet (Still prefer this with sausage... but still good, especially with garlic croutons on top for crunch.)
  20. Red Kidney Bean Curry
Tonight we ate Chinese Chicken & Broccoli... and YES. It was amazing. So, I'm happy to have done a month and I'm happy to move on to other kinds of resolutions for February... Also, score for February being the shortest month of the year... Setting goals high because they're shorter... LOL. for the win!

Wishing you a happy and healthy ... February? New Year? New Month? This is the problem with month-long resolutions. How do you get off the stage? Happy January! Happy February! To continual dreaming and reaching for those goals!

:) Also, Monday. Goodnight!