Giving thanks

A few things I'm feeling thankful for:
Family visits – Walter got to sit in the laps of lots of grandparents this Thanksgiving.
Reading with Grandpa
Really, really, really good food, and a few nights away from my kitchen. Thank you to all of our hosts!
Buttery goodness
My little cookie thief.
Cookie stealer
The generosity of others. A sweater with elbow patches – hand-me-downs don't get much cuter than this.
Elbow patches
An extended weekend and a husband who lets me sleep in.
And so much more...
Happy Thanksgiving!


Bedtime snack

Walter spent dinner time driving a tater tot around his tray making "vroom vroom" noises. So we had a healthy snack before bedtime. Frozen blueberries. It's been a while. They're messier than I remember.


Rough night

Ish. Nate and I got food poisoning on Thursday night. Walter managed to escape it – I'm actually thankful he refused to eat his dinner this time! It is so wonderful to have family nearby. Gramma and Grampa took Walter for the day and gave Nate and I some much needed recovery time. And Aunt Kristin, Uncle Jeremy, Kyla and Finn were kind enough to let Walter play with their toys while I camped out on their couch. We're feeling much better today. Thank you, family!


Growing dinner

I just finished reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle – A Year of Food Life, by Barbara Kingsolver. (And by "reading" I mean I listened to the book on cd during my commute. It's kind of like cheating, but I think it's good use of an otherwise boring 20 minutes.) This book tells the story of a family's year-long commitment to eating locally. It has left me fantasizing about digging up our entire lawn to grow a wider variety of fruits and veggies and doing totally wacky things like raising chickens and making my own cheese. I have to keep in mind that the Kingsolver family owns a small farm, not a small suburban lot, and they have the time to work that farm. And getting Nate to agree to dig up the lawn to grow veggies he doesn't particularly want to eat could be a challenge. But I'm already starting to plan next year's garden. I'm hoping to expand a little and mix more edibles in with our flower beds – crossing my fingers that the bunnies will stay away. I have a lot of research to do. I wonder how much space I'd need for sweet potatoes...

You can read more about Animal, Vegetable, Miracle here. Check it out. Maybe you'll be inspired too.


Sweet potato fries

My new favorite side dish – sweet potato fries. Walter gobbles them up in the blink of an eye. He takes after his mama – he likes the sweet/salty combo too. I've learned to make really big batches so we don't have to fight over them.

sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch spears
olive oil
kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 425°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Toss potato spears with olive oil - just enough to coat. Spread them on the baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle with salt. Bake for 15 minutes, then turn with a spatula or tongs. Bake for another 5 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned.

Nate dips them in ketchup, but Walter and I like them just as they are.


Cooking with Walter

It's been a while since I've posted video. I've started a few projects, but things don't always work out as planned. And sometimes I don't plan at all and cute video clips just land in my lap. Here are a few minutes of Walter's antics while we were cooking dinner tonight. I should just leave the camera running more often. It's fun to see what he does while we're not looking.



I made the salted brown butter crispy treats today while Walter napped. By the time he woke up, half the pan was empty! How did that happen? They have that salty/sweet thing happening and I just can't get enough. I may never go back to the plain-jane crispy treats again.

One last lap

Today was the last day of the outdoor Farmer's Market for the season. It was a beautiful morning for it – Walter didn't even need his hat. We made our usual loop, got scones to share and loaded our bag with farm fresh eggs, chicken, and cheese. The ladies we bought our garlic from were kind enough to snap a photo of us:
Last day of the Farmer's market
A smaller market will be held indoors over the winter so we'll still get our Farmer's Market fix on Saturday mornings. It won't be quite the same without the fresh air and capitol view, but we'll take what we can get.


Nothing is safe anymore. He's figured out how to get on the furniture...


Recommended reading

You may have noticed that I've recently added a list of blogs to the sidebar on this page. My blog reading list changes from time to time and I will change the list here from time to time as well. There's so much great stuff out there in the blogging world.

One of my favorites I'd like to point out: Smitten Kitchen. It's a fabulous food blog, loaded with gorgeous images, and her most recent addition, a baby boy! It just keeps getting better. I don't remember how I stumbled upon this gem, but I enjoy reading it so much that I feel like passing it on to you. She makes a wide variety of recipes, and most would not intimidate the average cook. She gives honest reviews, stories of failures, and advice on how to make things better. And the photos! Did I mention the photos? Lovely. Smitten Kitchen's latest entry – salted brown butter crispy treats. I think I'll be making these very soon!


Oh, to be a kid again

We walk outside and are hit in the face with a blast of cold wind. Walter stops for a second, then grins and throws his hands in the air like he's on a wild roller coaster ride. I guess this is his way of welcoming the cold weather. Maybe I should give his approach a try...