Monday, August 31, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Oh no! Monday is over and I'm already behind! The laundry is piled up, the dishwasher is full, the refrigerator needs to be cleaned out... and I don't want to do any of it.

My menu really fell apart at the end of last week. Friday I took the girls out to a movie and stopped at the store on the way home for a junk food feast instead of cooking pizza. Saturday we were busy all day and ended up just grabbing McDonalds on the way home. Sunday Taylor fell down the stairs and split her chin open. It took five hours to get her stitched up and the poor girl just wanted mashed potatoes for dinner.. so that's what I cooked. Hopefully this week will be better although we aren't off to a great start. Dinner tonight was at the Japanese steakhouse.

Tomorrow I'd better get back to cooking.

Our CSA share for this week contained:

4 ears sweet corn
1# Roma beans
1½# German Butterball potatoes
1# summer squash
1# slicing tomatoes
1# tomatillos
1 red onion
1 sweet onion
1 bunch carrots
1 bunch rainbow chard
2 cucumbers
2 jalapenos
1 head garlic
1 lettuce
1 bunch chives
1 bunch cilantro
1 bunch flowers

I used the tomatillos and jalapenos for chile verde. Everything else will be pretty easy to use up.. nothing too weird this week.

Monday - dinner out
Tuesday - Rainbow Chard Tacos with Caramelized Onion and Fresh Cheese, Pink Beans
Wednesday - Beef Stroganoff, Vegetable Stroganoff, Potato and Cheese Pierogis
Thursday - Spaghetti and Meat or Bean Balls, Salad, Garlic Bread
Friday - Leftovers
Saturday - Make your own Pizza
Sunday - Bob grills something yummy

For more weekly menus visit Have a great week everyone!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Six impossible things before breakfast

At 5am my son woke me up asking me to drive him to work because his ride didn't show up. I hate 5am but I got up, got dressed, got on the freeway, and got him to work on time. Then I came home and couldn't go back to sleep so I gave up and just got busy. Ok, maybe I didn't do six impossible things but I did discover that getting up extra early definitely improves my productivity.

I had onions, garlic, jalepenos, anaheims, tomatillos and cilantro to use so I made a pretty arrangement with them.

It looked nice but was a little too green for my decor so I roasted them all.

and made a couple quarts of chile verde salsa.

Then I took a nap!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

That'll do pig

I have refrained from commenting on the healthcare debate this summer because most of you know my position on the subject anyway. Some of you agree while others disagree, which is perfectly fine, but, on this issue, I have found myself unable to simply ignore those who disagree with me. I want to argue with them, and arguing isn't something I do well. Additionally, arguing with people who dismiss what I have to say simply because they have decided I'm liberal does bad things to my blood pressure. I'm trying to keep my blood pressure down so that it doesn't increase my insurance premiums. So, with that in mind, I decided I would not rant about healthcare... and I'm trying very hard to keep that promise even though I do occassionaly scream at the television.

However, I really want to share this vlog of John Green's because it's a rational, well balanced and comical look at the issue. I hope you enjoy it.

"What do you do when you have a pig that's so big he can't walk? You either kill him, put him on a diet, or keep feeding him.. which is more or less what the healthcare debate boils down to." John Green

Oh... and a bit of good healthcare news. After more than six months of conversation with my insurance company and a formal request for reevaluation, that did not inclue this blog post but did include several of the pictures, our insurance company finally agreed to pay for the ambulance transport from helipad to hospital. Hurray!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Summer is almost over and my house is starting to buzz with the excitement and anxiety of a new school year. I love this feeling of anticipation, of a fresh start coming up, it makes me want to start over too. So it's time to get myself organized... again!

This summer we joined a CSA (that's community supported agriculture) and have really enjoyed getting a weekly box of vegetables from a local organic farm. However, it has been a bit of a challenge to learn how to use them all, especially the kale and kohlrabi. I did find a fantastic recipe for kale tacos that my family will eat but so far the kohlrabi has been a dismal failure. Fortunately this week we don't have either vegetable in our box.

We have:

1 pint Sungold cherry tomatoes
1½# slicing tomatoes
1½# Roma beans
1½# all-purple potatoes
2 fennel bulbs
1# summer squash
1½# tomatillos
1 bunch carrots
1 cucumber
1 sweet fresh onion
2 jalapeno peppers
1 head garlic
1 red butter head lettuce
1 bunch cilantro
1 bunch chives

Most of the vegetable will be used in our meals but I'm also going to make a chile verde salsa with the tomatillos, jalapenos, and cilantro. I love the fact that an abundance of vegetables has pushed me to build vegetarian menus with meat on the side instead of meat based menus with adjustments for our vegetarians.

Thanks to Laura at for hosting Menu Plan Monday. Check out her blog for more great ideas!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Blueberry Preserves

Friday morning we picked blueberries. She set out across the field to find the best berries, alone, but soon scurried back to me because wild animals were making noise in the brush beyond the fence. She told me knock knock jokes, stories of being a child, dreams of being grown, and we picked buckets full of berries.

Perfectly Ten she balances between sweet childhood and tart teen and I wish I could save this moment for the future. To savor. Like the blueberry jam that will remind us of summer on cold winter mornings.