Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Quick Trip to DC

I had to go to Washington, DC overnight for work.....left Sunday and got back Monday. Thankfully, when I got there on Sunday at least the weather was nice enough to walk from the Metro to my hotel. Along the way, I saw a lot of cherry blossoms.
Gorgeous and happy I could see it before it rained all day Monday!
Here's hoping you see the lovely Washington, DC cherry blossoms in your future.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Beauty....

I just needed some beauty today......

Good thing Fresh & Easy had daffodils on sale for $1.29 for 10 stems. I bought 4 bunches and am going to take some to work with me.

Simple yet beautiful!

Here's hoping you have some beauty in your life.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Mmmm.....

About a week ago I got fresh basil & mozarella that made a very good Caprese Salad.

I made granola this weekend using a recipe very similar to one I made before from an online source.

The recipe:

4 cups old fashioned rolled oats
1 cup sliced almonds (I used chopped up whole ones)
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/4 cup unsalted pepitas (I used sunflower seeds)
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
2 T canola oil
1/2 kosher salt
1 cup dried fruit (I used craisans.)

1. Heat oven to 350F. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the oats, almonds, coconut, and nuts with the maple syrup, oil and salt.
2. Bake, tossing once, until golden and crisp, 25 to 35 minutes.
3. Add the dried fruit and toss to combine. Let cool.

TIP: the granola will keep in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to 3 weeks.

Source: Real Simple Magazine, April 2010

The finished granola.
I mix it with yogurt for breakfast and it is really good.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Renaissance Festival 2010

We went to the RenaissanceFestival today with Dad & Linda. While we waited for Dad & Linda to meet us, Simon made a nice rubbing of a unicorn with a very nice man in one of the booths.
I had to take a photo of this attendee since his chain mail was made of Bud Light cans. I just laughed when I saw it!
This year Simon tried Jacob's Ladder. It is game of balance and counter weights but Simon did not quite grasp that concept.

Yeah....this was right before he fell off!
This group so guys named London Broil did a great show! The balanced juggling and comedy was a lot of fun.
The bungee cord trampoline jumping is the highlight of my children's visit to the Renaissance Festival. This year was no exception. You see Simon in the background with Hannah in the foreground.
They tried their hand at jumping frogs.....

And this huge slide!!! It almost looks they are in jail (tempting, I know).
We fed some sheep in the petting zoo.
And Simon churned some butter. He LOVED it last year too!
Hannah modeling my new hat. I forgot a hat at home so......a new one was purchased with a wide brim to block the sun. Hannah trying out the hammocks...if only I had somewhere to hang it!Trying their hand at archery!
and a small cross bow....
And finally the merry go round.....
Let's not forget Simon...

A family photo before we left!
We can't forget Grandpa & Grandma.
Beautiful spring weather in Arizona. Can't be beat!
Bungee trampoline jumping video!

video

Road Trip Saturday

The kids & I decided to take a road trip yesterday because I saw an advertisement for a gem and gem show in Cottonwood, AZ. As you can see, Hannah found some she liked.

Simon was very impressed with the large amethysts.

After our visit to the gem show we visited Tuzigood National Monument.

The ranger was very nice to allow us to use the staff picnic table for our picnic. The view of the Verde Valley was beautiful.


Jerome, AZ off in the distance at the left of the photo. The kids thought it was cool that there was snow on the peaks.


At the top of the monument.


Verde Valley.....it is nice to see the desert all green because of the recent rains.

Simon practicing his corn grinding skills like he did while we were in Colorado.

A view of the monument.

Last stop....Montezuma's Well. A view of the cliff dwellings built above the water.

At the bottom of the well is an 800 year old ruin that you can look into up close and personal. Good thing I have kids, because of all the times I have visited the well, I never knew it was there!

The well from above with the cliff dwellings of in the distance.
The well naturally drains on the other side of the well and the Sinagua tribe used to irrigate their farm land. Simon enjoyed trying to catch the water bugs. Unfortunately, he was not successful.
At the end of our visit to the well, we ran into a couple that had 6 animals between them, including a wolf that Simon enjoyed petting. It had the most gorgeous blue eyes.
A great day! Today, we are off to the Renaissance Festival.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Hannah's District Track Day

I chaperoned Hannah's District Track & Field Day. Here she is in the stands.......
My lovely daughter and I. Like the school shirts???
Waiting for the final relay events.
On the track and waiting for the baton hand off.
And off she goes!
Her relay team came in 4th out of 6. Here is the whole group that went to district from her school along with their teacher.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Food...Veggies!

This weekend, I had lots of veggies on hand. Therefore, I made a very yummy Italian flavored veggie soup.

A few weeks ago, the neighbors also gave me a jar of "friendship" soup. It was really good! I used the soup mix and added a bunch of veggies including carrots, celery, beans, onions and cabbage. It was really good!
Friday night I had Simon all to myself. We went to the mall to get him a new pair of shoes. Along the way, he found some massage chairs. His special treat for the evening was to have a chair massage. I gotta love that boy because I LOVE getting a massage.

With our veggie love....I got a bunch of carrots. Here they are before being washed. I figure that when they are put into soup, they need to keep their peels since that is where a lot of the nutrients are in carrots.
Simon was my helper with the Italian style soup and the carrot soup. He did a great job working the food processor.
The simmering carrots & a few potatoes.

After being hit with the immersion blender. I LOVE that Christmas gift from Dad & Linda a few years ago!
And, finally, Donk & Finny are having a craft/cook along this year. One of the projects for this month is an Irish soda bread. Easy to make and mighty tasty. It will be my toasted breakfast this week along with some boiled eggs!