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October 2, 2009

Happy Birthday, Cooper!

happy birthday coop!

Dear Cooper,

A year ago you arrived! At lunch time! Thank god I was granted a fast labor, because I swear- If I had to go more than 10 hours without eating, I would have seriously lost it!!!

Through you, I have learned that the quickest year my life, was the first year of yours. Seriously- where did the time go? How did those edible toes of yours ever fit into those teeny newborn socks?  Now you barely wear socks because you pull them off to aid your need for mobility. Silly kid!  I can’t believe you are already walking…..

You are the most delightful child! Everyone who meets you, tells me how lucky I am to have such a happy baby. It’s true… I am. I am so blessed to have you. You’ve brought so much joy into our lives, I don’t even know where to begin!

There have been ups and downs throughout this past year, and I don’t know how I would have been able to make it through if it wasn’t for you!  I can’t get enough of your scrunchy face smiles & those giggles of yours- and OMG those little teeth! How fast they cut through a loaf of bread!  It’s adorable, yet frightening to witness you chomp through a bar of soap!  Why must you do that? Don’t you realize how gross it tastes?

Thank you for being a good boy! Thank you for making me laugh and to help remember that life is about learning new things- constantly!  I had no idea how wonderful it is to squeeze and kiss such soft baby cheeks until I met you.  You are my ray of sunshine, and you make me proud.

Love Always,

Your Momma

p.s- I am making some cupcakes while you take your nap.  I hope you love them!

p.p.s- look at you! A few hours old!  You are a big boy now!

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September 27, 2009

get me a bloody mary, STAT

the last round

to be devoured

Today’s the day after the BlogHer Meetup and I’m exhausted!  I have soo many wonderful things to report but currently my brain is mush.  Too many spirits mixed with an abundance of laughter, sensory overload,  amazing talent & inspiration…I don’t think I can process it all!

I have a lot of new ideas/goals/projects twirling in my head and I’m super stoked about that.

Thank you to the ladies who made the day special!  Marcelo done hooked us up!

Oh! And in other news, I am finally on twitter!

Now let’s have some fun!

http://twitter.com/shutterbean

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September 25, 2009

Moroccan-Style Stuffed Acorn Squash

i'm stoked to try these

I ripped out a bunch of recipes from some magazines to try last week.  I plan on knocking out each one as we begin autumn.  First recipe tried is from the current issue of Martha Stewart Living.  It’s the picture in the upper middle.

When we were in Morocco a few years back, we had a wonderful couscous with chicken garbanzo beans and squash…It was a dish that Casey, my brother Ryan and I still talk about.  Here I took a pic!

After making this recipe tonight, Casey said:

“This reminds me of Morocco. MMMM. This must be made again. MMMM. And I want more meat next time!”

It was very very good.  I would have liked it even more if it wasn’t super hot today!  But yes, it’s one of those recipes that’s perfect for a cozy evening in with a nice glass of red wine.  Yum!

I really liked the golden raisins.  The acorn squash I bought was not really that sweet, so the raisins really stepped it up! The nice spice of the cinnamon and nutmeg warms you up!  I caught Casey scraping the skins of the squash until there was nothing left.  It was that good!  Nice work, honey!

I guess this means that I will be making it again- with more meat filling.

So let’s get started!

I used an ice cream scooper to dig out the seeds.  It works SOO well.

scoopage!

I cut the bottoms off so they would eventually lay flat when I turned them over.

Aren’t they prettie?

prettie squash!

Here are some of the crucial ingredients:

ingredients

Browned the meat…and set it aside.

ground beef

Added the bulgur to the onions

stirring in bulgur

Out of the oven and onto my plate!  (there were more steps involved)

tonight's dinner

Moroccan-Style Stuffed Acorn Squash


(Recipe Martha Stewart Living Magazine. Serves 4)

  • 2 medium acorn squashes (ab 2lbs), halved & seeded
  • 2 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 lb. ground chuck (95% lean)
  • 2 tsp. course salt
  • ground cinnamon
  • ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup bulgur wheat
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup Italian flat leaf parsley
  • 2 tblsp. toasted pine nuts

1. Preheat oven to 400. Place squashes, cut sides down in a 9×13 inch casserole dish. Bake until tender, 35 to 40 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a 4 quart pot with a tight-fitting lid over medium heat. Add ground beef, a pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg, and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring frequently until browned and cooked through, 5-7 minutes. Transfer beef to a bowl or plate using a slotted spoon, keeping as much of the cooking liquid in the pot as possible.

3. Add onion, and cook until slightly translucent, about 5 mins.  Add garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add remaining teaspoon salt and the bulgur, and stir to combine.  Add water, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook for 15 minutes.  Take pot off the stove and let sit covered for 5 minutes.  Fluff with fork, and add reserved beef, the raisins, parsley & pine nuts.

4. Scrape out baked squashes, forming 1/4 inch thick bowls, and fold flesh into bulgur mixture. Divide among squash halves, and return to the oven. Bake until warmed through and tops are browned. 12-14 minutes.

Enjoy!

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September 25, 2009

Fun with RIT dye!

I thought that I’d share with you what some of the dyed clothes look like.

Oh hi. Look at my dyed clothes

That sweater up there was originally a light gray color. I wore it all the time when I was pregnant and after Cooper was born. I wanted to update it because I realized I don’t like light gray with my skin tone and I also wanted something different.   That undershirt was originally pink with mauve flowers. Soo not my cup of tea.  This was in the pile of- “Let’s see what happens when it’s dyed!” I am really glad I did it because it brought out a lot of purples that I love.

CONTINUE READING

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September 24, 2009

project: organize closet completed!

About two weeks ago I saw a photo posted by Amanda at Slow Like Honey on flickr of her closet to be organized. I too have been putting off organizing mine and thought,”This is ENOUGH! I NEED AN ORGANIZING CHALLENGE!!!”

Why?

-because I too needed to clean out my closet (duh)

-because I felt like I could be held accountable if someone else was doing it (it really helped that she set a deadline for me)

-because I’ve been wondering what the carpet in my closet looks like

-because I’ve been watching the Rachel Zoe Project and am dying to figure out what I can come up with in my closet. I have sooo many clothes and nothing to wear.

Over the past week I’ve been working on this project. I just looked at the before photos and CANNOT BELIEVE I lived in such chaos.  No wonder I felt like I didn’t have anything to wear. Why did I not do this sooner? Oh yeah..cuz I had a kid maybe.

BEFORE:

the great closet organize of 2009

uggggh

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September 16, 2009

Blueberry Buckwheat Pancakes

blueberry buckwheat pancakes

Did I ever tell you how  much I suck at making pancakes?  Or should I saw how i USED to suck at making pancakes.  I don’t know what my problem(s) were.  Perhaps over mixing?  Maybe my batter was too thick?  The pan was too buttery? I didn’t let the batter rest? I didn’t have the right heat?  Maybe I was just a wuss and psyched myself out. Yeah that sounds more like it 😉

Today I embraced my fear of making pancakes and tried this Blueberry Buckwheat Panackes recipe from Ellie Krieger.  I mixed all of the dry ingredients last night before bed and set them aside.  I sprung to my feet the second I heard Coop stirring this morning and whipped up the batter and brought him down and made pancakes.  He enjoys watching me run around in the kitchen.

Casey woke up earlier than normal to join us for breakfast.  I am sure he would have much rather slept- but when you have your wife slaving in the kitchen in the morning, you HAVE to.  He said “they were pretty good for being all healthy and buckwheaty”. I feel like I need to sneak some health in every chance I can.  If my boyz had their way, they would be eating nothing but meat, pasta, potatoes & bread.

The pancakes were very light and with the additions of blueberries & bananas—they were yummy. I really thought that they were gonna turn out like big thick hockey pucks!  So SCORE.  I DID IT.  I made light & fluffy pancakes.

I still have TONS of batter left and might make a batch tomorrow morning. We’ll see how that works out!  Hope you enjoy!

Blueberry Buckwheat Pancakes

(recipe adapted from Ellie Krieger)

-3/4 cup buckwheat flour
-3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
-1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
-1/2 teaspoon baking soda
-1/4 teaspoon salt
-1 cup buttermilk (i used a cup of plain yogurt)
-3/4 cup nonfat milk
-1 tablespoon honey (I used agave nectar)
-2 large eggs
-2 tablespoons canola oil
-2 cups blueberries, divided  (I used frozen-and defrosted them overnight in the fridge)
-1/2 cup real maple syrup

In a large bowl whisk together the flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In another bowl, beat together the buttermilk, non-fat milk, honey, eggs, and oil. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, mixing only enough to combine them. Stir in 1 cup of berries.

Preheat a large nonstick griddle or skillet over a medium flame. Ladle the batter onto the skillet with a 1/4-cup measure. Flip the pancake when it is golden brown on the bottom and bubbles are forming on top, about 1 1/2 minutes. Cook the other side until golden brown, about 1 1/2 minutes. Serve topped with more blueberries and the maple syrup.

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September 13, 2009

new obsession: terrariums!

on display!

I’ve been wanting to make some for awhile.  I’ve seen TONS and TONS of images of them on the ‘net.  I made today “MAKE A TERRARIUM” day.  Why did I wait so long to do so?

I found a nice lil tutorial over here at designsponge.  It’s awesome!  I had no idea how easy it was to do.

It took a trip to Home Depot, a stop at IKEA for jar and a trip to Salvation Army to get another container.

Took me about an hour or so to complete all three of them.  I got kinda overboard and made another one while Cooper napped.

Take a look!

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