Tuesday, October 25, 2011

All Boy!

There is some construction going on behind City Hall down the street from our house and Rowan has been in absolute awe of it all. Such a boy to love big machines!

He stood watching them and pointing for the longest time. So cute!

rowan staring at construction

Monday, October 24, 2011

Pumpkin Patch

Thankfully the forecast was wrong and the sun came out just in time for our trip to the pumpkin patch on Sunday. We went to Jubilee Farms in Carnation and really loved it! Lots of sights to see and explore: pigs eating pumpkins, pony rides, squash tasting, apple pressing, hay maze, and our favorite- hay ride out to the field to pick a pumpkin. We got to ride on a tractor pulled cart on the way out, and a horse drawn cart on the way back. Rowan loved looking all around. We decided to put him in his Halloween costume for the pictures. Hope to make this a family tradition (minus the horrible yellow jacket sting I got on my finger)!

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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Handmade With Love!

My grandma knit this beautiful sweater and hat for Rowan. She is the sweetest and most talented person I know.  Even sweeter is that she knits these sweaters throughout the year to send to poor kids in third world countries.

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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Chicken Pot Pie

Alright, I must be on a roll with recipes these days but when I posted a picture of this to facebook, I had a few requests for the recipe.

chick pot pie

I really enjoy some good Fall comfort food. The best part about this recipe? It’s ‘light,’ so you don’t have to feel guilty digging in. It also requires quite a few steps it seems, but it’s well worth it and really not that hard at all.

*It’s best to mix and shape the biscuits after making the filling and just before baking the casserole. The filling must be warm when you top it or the biscuits will be gummy.

Filling:

6 carrots, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick

2 ribs celery, sliced 1/4 inch thick

1 onion, chopped fine

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried

1 teaspoon vegetable oil

salt

1/4 cup dry sherry

3 cups low-sodium chicken broth

2 bay leaves

2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed

1/4 cup cornstarch

1/4 cup half-and-half

1 cup frozen green peas

2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

pepper

Biscuits

2 cups all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled

2/3 cup buttermilk

1. Adjust an oven rack to the lower middle position and heat the oven to 425 degrees.

2. For the filling: combine the carrots, celery, onion, garlic, thyme, oil, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large dutch oven. Cover and cook over medium-low heat, stirring often, until the vegetables have softened, 10-12 minutes.

3. Stir in the sherry, broth, and bay leaves and bring to a simmer. Nestle the chicken breasts into the sauce. Reduce the heat to low,k cover and cook until the chicken is no longer pink in the center and the thickest part registers 160 degrees, 10-12 minutes.

4. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside to cool. Return the sauce to a simmer. Whisk the cornstarch and half and half together, then whisk into the simmering sauce. Continue to simmer the sauce until thickened, about 1 minute. Off the heat, discard the bay laves, stir in the peas and parsley, and season with salt and pepper to taste. 

5. Once the chicken is cool enough to handle, shred it into bite sized pieces. Stir the chicken into the sauce and then pour the mixture into a 9x13 baking dish.

6. For the biscuits: whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk the melted butter and buttermilk together. gently stir the buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture with a rubber spatula until just combined and no pockets of flour remain.

7. To assemble and bake: pinch off 8 equal pieces of the biscuit dough and arrange them on top of the hot filling, spaced 1/2 inch apart. Bake until the biscuits are golden and the filling is bubbly, about 20 minutes. Let cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Enjoy and let me know if you make it!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Homemade Granola Bars

This is a healthy, tasty, and easy to make recipe for a great snack at home or on the run. I wrapped each bar individually with plastic wrap so Russ can take them to work and class. The almonds are great protein and I even enjoy one with my afternoon coffee or tea!

Sorry there aren’t any photos.. I took them on my phone and they looked too blurry when I uploaded them.

 

Makes: 36 Bars

Ingredients:

7 Cups old fashioned rolled oats (not quick cooking oats!)

1/2 Cup vegetable oil

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 Cup Honey

3/4 Cup packed light brown sugar

1 Tbsp vanilla extract

2 tsp cinnamon

1 1/2 Cups whole almonds

1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 375 degrees. Toss the oats, oil, and salt together in a large bowl, then spread out over a baking sheet and bake, stirring often, until pale gold, 20-25 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, cook the honey and brown sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently until the sugar is fully dissolved, about 5 minutes. Stir in the vanilla and cinnamon and set aside.

3. Remove the oats from the oven and lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees. Transfer the baked oats to a large bowl and toss with the honey mixture until evenly coated. Stir in the nuts.

4. Line a 12x18 rimmed baking sheet with foil , then lightly coat with vegetable oil spray. Spread the oat mixture out on the prepared pan, then pack tightly into an even layer using a wet metal spatula. Bake until golden, 35-40 minutes.

5. Let cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then cut into 2x3 inch bars in the pan. Let cool completely before removing from the pan.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Woodland Park Zoo

I’ve been going to this zoo since I was a little girl so it was really fun to take Rowan. It was an extra special day since we had Nana with us.

He’s at the age where he loves to look at animals. Pointing at them, and making funny noises. He can growl like a lion, make monkey noises, woof like a dog. It’s super cute!

Here he is with the penguins. Looks like they are kissing in the 2nd picture!DSC_0003DSC_0005

Rowan LOVES birds. The lady who lives behind us has bird feeders outside and he always wants us to pick him up so he can see the “Buh!!”DSC_0010

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Loves being with his Daddy. It was great that he could take a day off to spend with us!DSC_0024

 

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Looking at the fish and sea ottersDSC_0033Nana!DSC_0045DSC_0046The porcupine was right up closeDSC_0051DSC_0061DSC_0071DSC_0084DSC_0087DSC_0088DSC_0089DSC_0121DSC_0122DSC_0124

Can’t wait to go again. We didn’t even make it to all of the exhibits!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

New Zealand Pride!

Here’s Rowan representing his New Zealand ‘All Blacks’ onesie from his Nana. The All Blacks are New Zealand’s famous Rugby Team. Maybe someday we’ll go to a game!

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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Shop Til’ You Drop

My Mom and I took Nana to Bellevue Square to do some shopping. Rowan almost never falls asleep in the stroller but apparently we wore him out!

shop til you drop

‘Surf’s Up’ Birthday Bash!

Here was the invitation (the little sunshines are to edit out personal info):

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We had his party at my grandma’s apartment ‘clubhouse’ down by Coulon Park. It was the perfect venue with a pool table, full kitchen, fireplace, etc…  with lots of room, and funky d├ęcor!

We had a great turnout and despite Rowan skipping his first nap, he was happy the whole time. My mom and Russ’ mom worked really hard on the Shark and Beach cupcakes, and they turned out so cute. I made Rowan a little surfboard shaped cake and he loved it. I had to take it away after a bit because I was afraid he would get a tummy ache. Everyone was so generous and he got a lot of great books, clothes, and toys. I put away all of his old stuff and will try and rotate things so he doesn’t get bored.

Here are a few photos of the day:September 20119