Tuesday, May 20, 2014

My Favorite Things

I was doing a weekly update last year highlighting my favorites of the moment. It was a good thing. For a busy woman living a beautifully chaotic life, it reminded me to stop and notice. To appreciate. To revel. To drink another cup of coffee while the babes watch Frozen again and just... be grateful. For the busy days and the quiet days and all the movement inbetween.

1. Recipes. I have been trying to take advantage of introducing two small humans to food, my extra time at home near the kitchen, and all the food blogs I have loaded on Feedly. My main goal has been to reduce the amount of wrappers and processed things in our cabinets, as well as learning to make the foods we eat most often from scratch. One of my favorite food blogs/cookbooks is called Dinner: A Love Story, and she (Jenny Rosentrach) calls these her "back pocket" recipes. I adore her mushroom risotto, her bourbon glaze for any kind of pork, her black bean burritos, and my new favorite, sausage with apples and onions. It cooks for 45 minutes in a dutch oven and turns out best when you leave it alone. My kind of "cooking with babes underfoot" recipe.

2. Granola Bar "dough". Like cookie dough but with all the best bits. Oats, butter, chocolate chips and honey. Impossible to spend 5 minutes pressing it into a pan without licking it off your fingers. I made this recipe for granola bars yesterday and although it was a bit rich for my taste, they were very easy to make. I doubled the recipe and should have halved the sugar. But Pursy and Knox found them quite satisfactory for breakfast, and the beautiful thing about handmade food is I know exactly what they are shoving in their mouths. The sugar and butter were rounded out with loads of oats and pecans, and I like that they are eating real food that they helped make. I didn't mind chocolate chips for breakfast either...

3. Netflix. Last evening Grant was out to dinner with some colleagues and I had mountains of laundry to fold. I made myself a gin and tonic and settled in. I found a Belgian film called Broken Circle Breakdown. IMDb describes the film: "Elise and Didier fall in love at first sight, in spite of their differences. He talks, she listens. He's a romantic atheist, she's a religious realist. When their daughter becomes seriously ill, their love is put on trial." Right?? Other elements included gorgeous tattoos (she is a tattoo artist), fantastic bluegrass scores (he is a banjo player), parenting, mad crazy love affairs, intense friendship, love and loss, and English subtitles. It was gorgeous and thoughtful and it made me think and reflect and well up with gratefulness at the life I am living. What more can you ask for? Grant came home in time for the last 30 minutes and it was nice to snuggle up with my lover and watch the story of Elise and Didier come to a close. Very worth watching, just not if you are more in the mood for something like Super Bad.

4. Nothing is given over in our house right now without strict orders to "close your eyes and open out your hands!" It is the babes favorite game and actually works quite well when they are being asked to hand over something they don't really want to. Or take something they don't want to. Mary Poppins was right again.

5. Our pergola. Grant has been obsessed for two years with the idea of building a wood pergola over our back deck so we can eat dinner outside in the heat of the early summer evening without sweating our way through. We eat outside almost every night from May-October and until the sun moves a bit more to the west, we are in full direct rays. It doesn't deter us, but the idea of some shade was enticing. The construction was finished last week and we spent Saturday planting flowers, hanging globe lights and creating a backyard oasis. It is absolutely dreamy. Come on over...we will sit you in a red adirondack chair, put a beer in your hand and just as you relax completely Knox will spray you with the hose.

6. "I have one nose, two hands, fingers, one belly, one bottom, one penis, two feets and these teeth." This was my morning wake up today. (no, it wasn't Grant) My eyes pried themselves open to my blue pajama clad Knox taking inventory of his body parts as he laid in bed next to me. When he looked over and noticed I was awake, he said "Mama, I in bed wiff you because I had a dream 'bout a pickle and needed to snuggle wiff you". I didn't need any more explanation.

Good Tuesday to you!

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