Tuesday, October 30, 2012

fall fun.

we made our way out to tolmachoff farms this past weekend for a nice sunny time picking pumpkins out, riding ponies, climbing ropes, jumping, trains, and a general good family outing. if you do not want to make the trek to schnepf farms (which i thought was wonderful last year...a fun late afternoon/evening outing), then this is a pretty good alternative. our kids loved it!

and with our mini pumpkin loot we had enjoyed a pretty morning painting before chores ensued. ruby had been dying to paint pumpkins for some reason, so check, and done. 

and hey there big 4 month old, how is fall treating you? milk, still just milk. 

Thursday, October 25, 2012

morning walks and deep thoughts.

i could not be happier with this change in weather. believe it or not it is actually still a bit warm, but the fact that we can spend so much time outside is priceless right now. everyone is much happier, and we're back to being ourselves...walks to the park and the library. adventures through the 'jimmy jungle' (as Finn referred to it one time and has stuck ever since).

i will say it is kind of confusing here for kids when you tell them it is fall and the leaves really are not changing. Ruby keeps asking if any of our trees are going to change colors. hmmm, probably not much sister. and speaking of Ruby questions; there have been a whole lot of difficult ones lately about how God makes so many things, and did God make Jesus? (all i could think of was, dare i bring up the Trinity...oh they are three in One...) and then she asked: "Who made God?"

Tonights dinner ponderings included something a bit lighter: "i wish Jesus lived in the same time as us right now, b/c then we could play with him and it would be so fun! He could ride in our car...but he wouldnt take a shower with us, no. Wait, where would he live?"
ummm, at his house of course. 

I tell you, good stuff lately. I'll keep you posted. And why is it that i can not answer questions simply? i find myself concocting a rather intense response in my head, quickly stopping myself, and then replying with something so simple as "hmmm, im not sure" or way too much information. good thing i dont teach kindergarten. boy are Ruby's teachers in for a treat next year!

hope the weather is treating you right! i can not wait for halloween. shall be full of laughs and good cousin time. ruby will be going as Cathy Sheldon from singing in the rain. and dec of course will be THE HULK. there have been some pretty exciting crafting/sewing going on around these parts. i do believe it going to be legen...wait for it...


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

kale and a new camera app.

recently threw this salad together because i simply love the flavor of kale in a salad and this was just stuff in my fridge. as much as i would love to say i am a pretty good menu planner, i sometimes get carried away with the day/kids/nice weather/crafts/playing/the park or who knows and before you know it its dinner time and i am scrambling. so i cooked up some chicken and threw it over noodles with parmesan, lemon and olive oil, along side this crunchy salad:

raw kale
chopped brussels
sliced red onion
sliced red bell pepper
slivered almonds
grape tomatoes
purple grapes
and poppy seed dressing

best part? leftover never get soggy, so good for a couple days. 

and on a side note; i found this camera app i love, that is a huge time waster in making pics look fancy and pretty. its called vsco cam. used on both of these photos. i think its great at making food look nice in photos; a daunting task sometimes. 

hope the fall is treating you right! can not wait to make some fun fallish treats to welcome in this lovely october. made anything fab lately?

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

the end of summer. i think.

being on your own for a sunday with all the kids is not so bad when everyone naps, and you know a family get together/dinner is involved later in the day. so you choose to spend naptime making a pretty cake b/c your in the mood to frost a cake. why is that so fun to me? something about it i tell you.
 ruby helped me make some simple flags to fancy it up, b/c after all, why not?

this one is for you pudge and jack. you know who you are. and yes, you can simply use the same batter for cupcakes if you please. the ones i made at the willows included orange zest in the batter, and vanilla frosting + fancy sprinkles i think. for inquiring minds to rest at ease.

vanilla cake:

2 1/2 c. flour
2 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1 stick butter, room temp. 
1 1/2 c. sugar
3 eggs
1 t. vanilla extract
1 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. milk

preheat oven to 350
combine and sift dry ingredients. set aside. in bowl of stand mixer with paddle attachment blend butter well. add sugar and mix a couple of minutes on medium speed. add eggs one at a time. add vanilla. add a small amount of buttermilk + milk. alternate with flour mixture; ending with flour mixture last. make sure to scrape down bowl and incorporate all flour but do not overmix. 
makes two round cakes, or cupcakes. cook about 25 minutes, until its done. you know. 

on a whim chocolate frosting:

1 bittersweet chocolate bar (4 oz)
2 sticks butter (1 c.)
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. vanilla extract
3 c. confectioners sugar
1 T. heavy cream
splash of left over cold coffee

melt chocolate on double boiler. once melted, remove and add butter (cut up into small pieces). mix very well to smooth out any clumps of butter. add salt and vanilla. add 1 c. of sugar at a time until well incorporated. add heavy cream and coffee. blend on high speed until smooth. 

vanilla frosting:

2 sticks butter, room temp
4 c. powdered sugar
1/2 t. salt
1 t. vanilla extract
2 T. or so of whole milk

whip butter until smooth. add sugar one cup at a time. add salt and vanilla and milk, until desired consistency is attained. dont forget to taste it!

Monday, October 1, 2012

hello monday.

so a pretty good week, and indeed way too fast. i can not believe its over already. i am trying to enjoy this time while i can with no kids in school before next year when everything changes forever but for some reason i have a feeling, with three little guys, the nonstop action around here is just going to sweep me away. 
so emily, the kids and i had a fun friday afternoon 'music on the malling' it down at city scape. they have a dj, basketball, corn hole, and games down there and quite a few eating options right by the water, where yes...we are still running around in swim suits as we enter october. ahhh, fall in phoenix. 
i also spent a good amount of time helping my mom set up a condo for resale that i think turned out pretty awesome. {see pics below}.open spaces are so wonderful and leave you with a wonder of possibilities. 
i even stopped by the fabric store and found some fun fabric for cold weather projects. hard to believe it will be cold. 

hope you had a good weekend...and here are some fun links to start out your week. cheers!

if only i had a waffle iron i would love to make these pretty waffle cones!

this book looks so gorgeous; she has the prettiest food pics and how cute is the title?

i think this would be so cool to participate in. too bad im such a good dancer; they'd never allow it. {read about it here}

i love these worksheets for a fun little learning/coloring activity.

totally want to throw this party; such a great idea right? who doesnt love to dress up?

and thats all folks.