Monthly Archives: September 2014

This Week in My Kitchen

crock pot steal cut oatmeal with raisins and milk

freezer meals for after baby is born

homemade organic yogurt in the slow cooker

mashed sweet potatoes with butter

Is it really Thursday already? I can’t believe how quickly the weeks are going by. The days are getting shorter and shorter, which I love, but it does make it difficult to photograph our evening meals. I expect that these posts will start to fill with lots of pictures of our breakfasts as well as leftovers when we have enough for lunch the next day.

I am joining Beauty that Moves in posting highlights from my kitchen over the past week.

1. Slow cooker oatmeal. I think this is my new favorite thing. It takes about thirty seconds right before bed to throw it all in the pot, and when we wake the house smells delicious and we can leisurely eat breakfast whenever each of us is ready.

2. Indian food (kidney beans in a creamy tomato sauce) for the freezer. I have started doubling (and tripling!) some of our meals to stash away in the freezer for after the baby is born. Indian food, in it’s nice saucy gravy, is the perfect freezer meal.

3. My first batch of homemade yogurt. I also utilized the slow cooker for this one (I followed this recipe). I thickened mine up by putting it into a strainer lined with cheesecloth–it turned out delicious and I am so happy to have learned this new (and very simple!) skill.

4. Mashed sweet potatoes for breakfast, because sometimes that is all that sounds good!

On the First Day of Fall

ducks

We spent the first day of fall in true Southern California fashion, out of doors, slathering on sunscreen, and enjoying the water. We spent a gorgeous and hot morning lakeside at a local splash pad watching ducks with friends.

This is other version of the Suzanne dress I made up last week (alongside this one). For this one I used the most darling clover and grasshopper fabric by Heather Ross. I kind of wish this pattern came in adult sizes–it really is the most perfect beach or swimsuit cover up.

Welcome fall, now bring on the cool weather, please!

water park

water park

lake

foot prints

watching ducks

The Suzanne Dress

citronille suzanne dress sewing pattern

This is probably my favorite pattern to sew for Lucy. This is the second (and technically third, since I made two dresses at once) time I have sewed this dress. I cut out the fabric a few months back, but like so many of my projects it sat on the shelf waiting patiently for me to take it back out and start sewing. To be honest, I was starting to think that it may just not get finished and would be a new dress for baby #2 once she gets to be toddler age. A few days ago though, after wearing the first version I made (seen here), I felt inspired to get this back out and finish it. This pattern is so fast to sew, I probably only spent three to four hours over the span of three days sewing two of these dresses. It is light and breezy, perfect for a very active three year old to run, jump, and play in.

The pattern is the Suzanne from the French pattern company, Citronille. I have a few other Citronille patterns in the works, including some tops I have all but sewed the buttons onto for the new baby–I can’t wait to share those!

The fabric is by Joel Dewberry for the collection Botanique.

citronille sewing pattern suzanne

citronille suzanne sewing pattern

citronille suzanne dress sewing pattern

This Week in My Kitchen

north african squash and chickpea stew

white beans with artichokes

sweet potato and black bean tacos

It has been a while since I posted my weekly kitchen shots, and I only had a few in my camera roll, but hopefully next week’s post will be a bit longer. I absolutely love documenting our meals. Joining Beauty that Moves in sharing highlights from my kitchen this past week.

Pictured:

North African squash and chickpea stew. Please tell me I am not the only crazy person that makes soup or stew when it is 100ยบ outside. For some reason the comfort foods always come out on the hottest days when it is too hot to even go out.

White beans with artichokes and shaved Parmesan over salad greens.

Sweet potato and (refried) black bean tacos. I could (and often do) eat some variation of this meal every day. With different vegetables, toppings, a different sauce, some new cheese, tacos never get boring, in my opinion.

Not pictured:

The delicious winter vegetable stir fry with Chinese five spice. I was ready to snap a picture but my camera battery died just as I was about to. This was loaded with winter root veggies; carrots, parsnips, onions, shiitake mushrooms, Brussels sprouts. Lucy loved this one. This one was so good, I know I will be making it again soon.

This and That

pinning quilt layers together

painting

painting christmas ornaments

painted hands

bulk foods

winter vegetable stir fry with chinese five spice

I have gotten out of the habit of pulling out my camera during the day and I want to change that. I love going back through old blog posts and seeing even the most mundane of subjects that made our days. The days Lucy and I spend together are so special. I would be lying if I said it didn’t make me a little sad that our days of just the two of us are quickly coming to an end.

Here is a glance at our day today. While it is not of much significance, I will treasure these days of just Lucy and mama forever.

1. Finally back to working on the quilt for Lucy. Pinning the layers together, a rather daunting task, but I am happy to be one step closer to being finished.

2, 3, & 4. Painting. We do a lot of that around here when the temperatures are up in the 100s. Currently she is getting a head start on some Christmas presents for family members.

5. Organizing and refilling my bulk jars and sprouting seeds. It was long overdue seeing that I had three giant bags of oatmeal three of rice, which apparently I thought I was out of on three separate occasions. Good thing we use a lot of those things around here!

6. Dinner prep.

Getting Through the Summer

blueberry banana whole wheat muffins

silly girl

mole chicken chili from the slow cooker

silly girl

Have I mentioned it is summer? Well it is, and even more so since the last time I complained about it. Temperatures in the 100s all weekend and well into next week. My cooking has not reflected the season at all–cravings have come and gone so quickly during this pregnancy, and they don’t really take into consideration what time of year it is. My most major being for meat, which I have reintroduced back into my diet for the time being (it may or may not stick around after the baby is born, only time will tell).

Nesting is still in full force. With approximately six weeks to go I am tearing my house apart and putting it all back together, in a more organized manner.

Above are blueberry banana whole wheat muffins from The Moosewood Restaurant Cooking for Health.

The other dish is mole chicken chili from The Slow Cooker Revolution. I just got this book in hopes of utilizing my slow cooker more, especially after the baby was born. This dish was delicious and I am really looking forward to trying some more recipes from this book. If anyone has any other slow cooker recommendations, websites or books, please send them my way.

Speaking of recipes, has anyone else heard of Eat Your Books? It is a brilliant website for cataloging and searching your cookbook collection (though to add more than five books you must pay a small user fee, which I think is entirely worth it). It is so easy to search through all 50 (!) of my cookbooks with just a few clicks on the keyboard. Since joining I have been cooking from my cookbook collection considerably more than before I used the site.

Have a beautiful weekend friends!