Friday, May 26, 2017

eat your veggies

{image via 101 cookbooks}

as the weather warms up, as i get older and my kids seem to always be coming down with some sickness, i have the inspiration to eat healthier. i tend to think we are a pretty healthy family, but i admit i can slide and buy some rediculously huge bag of doritos at costco and feel like a total mom fail; because inevitably this is all they want to eat for every snack. 

on the flip side i think maybe there is too much pressure out there to feed your family perfectly healthy, organic everything, fresh from the farm, vegan, and balanced food that is not always necessarily affordable and something they want to eat. 

so i guess we can settle somewhere in the middle? keep it balanced folks. so last night we had a very healthy meal of salmon (which my kids love…win win) green beans and spanish potatoes. then there are the losing tired nights where i let them all get corn dogs from sonic. seriously? 

back to that healthy effort. right. here’s some inspiration to get on that path. sorry if ive been a little confusing in this effort. i just love a good donut, what can i say?


this breakfast salad looks like a nice way to start the day

im thinking a sriracha rainbow noodle salad could be the perfect summer lunch munch

a summer cake that is on the healthier side, i mean i just know cake is good for you

making your own bread is a goal i strive to master. i have tried it here and there but nothing i do consistently. this one looks yummy!

and this chinese chicken noodle soup looks so cozy and just right, even in warm weather, i can still dig a good soup

please share some of your favorite healthy meals or food blogs you go to for inspiration! i’d love to hear what you have to share! peace. and happy weekend! summer is here!!!!!!!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

summer.

summertime is upon us. the heat is rolling in, and coming in hot! as much as we may complain about it here in phoenix, i think we also kind of look forward to it, with much nostalgia if we grew up in it.

i have the fondest memories of summers spent in and out of the pool for hours on end playing pool games, breaking for popsicles, playing board games, and of course putting our pillows in the freezer. that last one is a secret trick my brother and i discovered to be the best way to cool down at night. i honestly do not remember a lot of planned activites; we just kind of did our own thing and it was awesome. 

flash forward to current day and it can feel pretty different. so many camps and activities to choose from; seriously overwhelming. i really see something beautiful in the peace of encountering a break from the hustle and bustle of the school year. less car time. more one on one time. less laundry. less clothing in general worn really. lots of time for creativity, endless reading, letter writing, adventures, and lazy family time. i truly find that summer can be a gift if you look at it in the right light. boredom can spur creativity and ingenuity. 

so when it comes to out summers, we usually plan one trip to the beach. this year we went a bit early and not sure if we will make it back. i would love to do a few az day trips. this is a beautiful state with so much to discover. other than that? we usually make a big fun list of things we want to do like museums and crafts and cooking projects, and maybe a cousin sleepover or movie night. there will be much swimming and a little bible camp to break things up. 

i really simply can not wait for summer to be here. it has a certain magical quality i am ready to embrace. how about you? what do you love about summer? any favorite traditions to share? 

Friday, May 19, 2017

happy weekend!

{what weekends are made of. bug viewing on the porch}

hey all! enjoying this pretty sweet weather? unfortunately we havent been out too much with my little gal being sick. i am hoping summer will be the end of sick kids for a while. one week until summer…man i can not wait!
any fun weekend plans? we are having a yard sale which the kids are pretty pumped about. declan will be selling bugs and things, so come visit us and bring your pennies. hope to see some of you there/here!


here are some fun links for your weekend viewing:


im thinking this salmon that say yes mentions makes for a perfect warm weather dish. looks amazing right?

umm, woah! these s’mores brownies. can not wait to give these a try. maybe a fun alternative to birthday cake.

this book is on my wish list. im so intrigued. its a topic heavy on my mind.

ive always loved the idea of giving your home a beachy feel even if you do not live near the water. its all about the vibe you create, right?

these travel bags would be so perfect for summer adventures.

who doesnt love flowers. one of my favorite local shops has the best fresh flower happy hour every friday afternoon. perfect way to start the weekend!

cheers to the weekend!



Thursday, May 18, 2017

raspberry buttermilk muffins.


what to do with all those delicious berries coming out right now? besides eating them for snacks, i love putting them in little muffins for the kids, or myself with an afternoon coffee. 

here’s a happy little everyday recipe for you, just for you. 

raspberry muffins:

2 1/2 c. flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 heaping cup of sugar
5 tablespoons of soft butter
1/4 c. veg oil
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon of almond extract
1/2 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. fresh raspberries (or your berry of choice)

streusal topping (optional)

preheat oven to 350
combine and whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.

in a separate bowl or mixer beat sugar and butter until light in color; then slowly add veg oil and whisk well. add eggs one at at time, and then vanilla. add half of flour, mix a bit then add the buttermilk. add remaining flour, and mix until it comes together into a nice batter but do not over mix. fold in raspberries gently.
top with streusal if desired. 

scoop into lined muffin tins. bake for about 20 minutes or until done. 

Monday, May 15, 2017

happy mothers day!

 sheesh where have you been girl? well, a few internet problems over here, so i’ve been without access. my apologies friends. i hope you all had a wonderful mama’s day yesterday filled with lots of love and relaxation. we had a nice slow morning and an afternoon of swimming. 

were you treated with anything fun you might want to share? good quotes from kiddos? the handwritten notes about what they love about you are my fave. 

ever since ive started carrying a smartphone and gotten into instagram i’ve found quite a few online and local shops i love. some are perfect for mama pampering. if i were to splurge here are some i love. happy browsing!

juju papers has adorable handmade wallpaper to spruce up a little office space or bathroom wall

i could live in the ava dress and playsuits by sonnet james

spluring on a sweet dress for my girls i’d check out this, this and this

for a perfectly stylish family vacay in a far away land i would definitely book something fab on kid and coe

and i have always had a thing for leather bags; parker and clay has some gorgeous backpacks and duffels i might snag someday

have a happy monday folks!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

grocery lists and dinner.

{my desk…usually graced with a cup of coffee}

do you love lists? do you set a menu for the week? i find it very helpful to do this before heading to the grocery. its keeps waste to a minimum and is less stressful knowing what you are making ahead; so on a busy week night you dont have to think, and can even sometimes get ahead of the game and prep dinner early. im not saying i do this too often but when i do, (cue. dos equis guy) the after school madness is much less stressful. 

{a sample of my list for the week and dinner schedule}

so basically the approach i take is first taking inventory of what we have, and what we need. i write down things we have i could use and try to incorporate them into meals. 
i have columns of produce, meats/breads/etc, and dairy/other things like soap and toilet paper. for some reason that works for me; not sure why. i try to pick something special with a good dessert for sundays. during the week i aim for a few simple things. i look through cookbooks and on blogs for dinner ideas and inspiration. 
how do you plan out the week? any favorite family dinners you want to share? 

here are a few of my favorite blogs for dinner ideas:

dinner a love story
smitten kitchen
101 cookbooks
not without salt

i’ll get together some of my favorite cookbooks to share with you later. promise. 

and so for this weeks line up we have, drumroll. . .

sun. grilled pork chops, twice baked potatoes, and mix green salad
mon. aunt emily’s asian chicken pasta salad with spinach and scallions
tues. veggie/quinoa soup, bread and fruit
wed. hot dogs, broccoli slaw salad, pineapples and mangoes
thurs. tomato soup + grilled cheese
fri. order pizza, im pooped. 

happy planning!

Monday, May 8, 2017

wish i knew you.




this weekend has left me feeling full and grateful. we were blessed with perfect crisp springy weather; a welcome change after that peek of summer this past week. i found a new song to obsess over and play thirty times while cleaning my house. ‘mom, youre playing it again?’ yes, sorry. your hint is the title of this post…name that band folks and you get a golden star. an imaginary one, but nevertheless you are the winner.

lets see… saturday morning spent cleaning, then a bit of swimming. an impromtu open house visit that turned out to be a really legitimate house we could go for, but try not to get your hopes up bc this house hunt is exhausting on the old emotions right? 
made it home to watch mary poppins, did some dancing, bc you know, step in time. “its the master!” 

a chilly windy sunday morning, mass and wiggly kids. then an fabulous afternoon, early mother’s day celebration brunch at el charro. delish and oh so lovely. a few tears of laughter shed; always a good thing. then home for dinner prepping, and making a strawberry rhubarb crisp with my favorite kitchen helpers, chef dec, mike and fran. needless to say many strawberries were consumed in the process. 



and top that off with some fabulous sidewalk jumping! thats a wrap. and for all interested parties, here is what i can tell you about that fruit crisp. easy peasy; here’s a loose rendering of what we did:

set oven to 425 bc your are already baking potatoes in there for dinner.
chop a pint of strawberries and three large stalks of rhubarb up and place in a bowl. add a half cup of sugar, 2 T flour, hefty pinch of salt, dash of vanilla and almond extract, and juice of half a lemon.
toss well.
melt half a stick of salted butter and add to whisked mixture of 1/2 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of flour, handful of oats and dash of cinnamon. whisk and mash into a crumble.
place strawberry mixutre in cast iron skillet, top with crumble and cook until bubbly. serve warmish with vanilla ice cream. cheers!