Sunday, January 31, 2010

It's been a crazy week

To say the least!
Wednesday I was so sick that Katie came to my rescue. She played with Lily for...maybe an hour while I slept. It was so sweet. How much difference that one hour made blows my mind!
Thursday I was still pretty much in recovery mode and trying to keep up with Lily.
Friday...Friday was hard. Probably one of the hardest days I've had in a few years. I think I'm actually going to designate a very serious post sometime this week to write about what came up. All I can say is God bless Jim Bob Haggerton, Katie Browning, Michelle Monk, and of course my loving husband. Without every single one of your's knowledge, compassion, and patience... you'd be looking at a very different Mae.
Saturday, another day of recovery, hahaha. I also went to a diaper show! Love, love, love diapers and I love, love, love Hip Green Baby. All of our diapers, teething necklaces, Moby's...actually, pretty much everything that is essential for Lily, we've gotten from Kristi!

And today we slept in super late [11- all three of us!] We went to Central Market to get some fish, but for some reason all of their in season fish was the most expensive...still looking for a place that sells quality, in season fish, that doesn't put all of our meals at $20 a night.

Just had to go check on Lily! She's become SO independent! It almost breaks my heart! She crawls short distances now, and still inchworms the long ones, she pulls up on anything and everything, and tries climbing too! She's so adventurous, I really don't know where she gets it from. She's become so good at waiting to poop till I take her to the potty, and when she's sleepy, she crawls from whatever room she's in to our family bed [which is on the floor] and lays there and waits for me to nurse her to sleep. It's quite adorable. She's also found out how musical she is. She loves to "sing" and dance, play drums, and clap my hands. [She hasn't figured out the whole I have two hands that come together.] Her look is starting to change. She's very long and [I think] she's starting to thin out, but she is so beautiful! Sometimes while she's playing, or nursing, or even sleeping, I look at her and see this tear jerking beauty that I am so in love with...

Ok, done catching you up! Here is last week's winner!
SPANK A PITA!  or Spanikopita...
[adapted from The Vegetarian Gourmet's International Cookbook, a staple in our house!]

There are two ways to make this wonderful dish, both of which I have tried. The first "traditional" way is with filo dough. Just typing that sentence made me wanna hit someone. I hate working with filo  dough, and trying this recipe with it has made me appreciate anyone who works with this devilish ingredient so much more. If you have the time, and patience, and the understanding that the dough IS GOING TO BREAK...then go for it. Otherwise, stay away, stay far, far, away.
The second way, which I will be going more in depth with is- biscuits! Now, if you have a quick and easy recipe for biscuits, I suggest you make the batter that morning, seperate it in to eight "biscuits" on to a pan lined with butcher's paper and refridgerate...
OR you can use refridgerator biscuits!  
[This is SOSOSOSOSOSO easy, but I know its hard to find biscuits that...aren't made of chemical do what fits your family :]

Now, the ingredients 
  • 8 refridgerated biscuits [homemade or store bought]
  • 1 package frozen spinach
  • 1 small lemon
  • 3 tablespoons raisins [DON'T leave these good!]
  • 1 small onion [white or red]
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese [the original recipe did not have this, but I highly reccomend!]
  • 3 TBS dill
  • salt and pepper to taste [again, salt is your friend! no bland food!]

  • Preheat oven to 350 [if you are using your baking stone, make sure it is in the oven for the preheating]
  • Remove spinach from packing and steam untill thoroughly cooked
While spinach is cooking
  • Finely dice onion [it is not neccisary to cook the onions. The heat from the spinach and the oven will take care of that for you, while still leaving a great texture! But if you must...]
  • Juice lemons making sure all seeds are removed
  • Line pan with parchment paper if not using stone.
Once spinach is done
  • Drain spinach well!
  • Combine all ingredients into bowl and mix thoroughly. You want to make sure every bite hss lots of flavor!
  • Get biscuits out of fridge
  • If using store bought biscuits roll them out
  • Spoon filling on to half of the biscuit
  • Fold biscuit in half and press down edges to close
  • Bake for 12 mins [I think?] or until golden brown :]

Serve with Hummus, or Tahinni and a side salad. Makes awesome leftovers too!
By the way, there are plenty of tutorials on working with filo dough, but if you have a baby like I do, you may find it mind-shatteringly annoying...

Have you tried any of my recipes? Whether you've made them or I've made them for you, I'd love to hear your feedback!

One last thing before I go, Vita Coco will be sending me a case of their coconut water for me to review on my blog! So generous, I hope they know I'm a brutally honest type of gal ;] With my review they will be giving all of my readers a coupon for $3 off a 12 pack on Amazon!

I hope to be back on track for blogging this week!

Monday, January 25, 2010

I've been a bad, bad girl...

[I do a meeeaan Fionna Apple impression]

I hardly blogged last week! Ugh! So sorry for that!
It was a very busy week. With cleaning up Lily's half eaten poop piles, to continueing beautifying my home, to reading-a lot!

I will be back for real on Wednesday with a delayed SPANKAPITA recipe[!] and hopefully [you think I'm lying don't you...] some pictures!

for now, here are some pretties [I have a certain Lovely Lady who's bday is coming up!]


[All photos can be found over HERE, love love, love!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Cray Cray Mae Mae with Insane Jane

The last few days have been CRAZY GOOD!

Tuesday we went to the zoo and yesterday I had an awesome morning with my Wednesday morning bible study group.

This morning though, the Lord has been working up some nasty, dirty, so glad its getting out, stuff.

Here are some tastes of what's been going on this morning
Can Natural Living Become and Idol via Passionate Homemaking
I love the verse she used at the end:

“Accept other believers who are weak in faith, and don’t argue with them about what they think is right or wrong. For instance, one person believes it’s all right to eat anything. But another believer with a sensitive conscience will eat only vegetables. Those who feel free to eat anything must not look down on those who don’t. And those who don’t eat certain foods must not condemn those who do, for God has accepted them.” - Romans 14:1-3

and this lovely song that pretty much describes to the tee the different things I have been struggling with.
This Too Shall Be Made Right by Derek Webb

Here are the lyrics if you don't care to take a listen.
"people love you the most for the things you hate.
and hate you for loving the things you can't keep straight.
people judge you on a curve
and tell you you're getting what you deserve
and this too shall be made right.

children cannot learn, when children cannot eat
stack them like lumber when children cannot sleep
children dream of wishing wells,
who's waters quench all the fires of hell
and this too shall be made right.

the earth and the sky and the sea are all holding their breath
wars and abuses have nature growing with death
you say we're just trying to stay alive
it looks so much more like a way to die.
and this too shall be made right.

yes theres a time for peace, there is a time for war
theres a time to forgive and a time to settle the score
a time for babies to lose their lives
a time for hunger and genocide.
and this too shall be made right.

oh i dont know the sufferings of people outside my front door.
and i join the oppressors of those i choose to ignore.
im trading comfort for human life
and that's not just murder, it's suicide.
and this too shall be made right.

o this too shall be made right

I promise to post pics of the zoo as soon as I resize all of them...ugh!


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Food Sunday

By votes of comments, emails, and @replies via Twitter...

[don't worry, the losers will get another chance]

16 oz cooked chick peas
about a TBS of Tahini
about 3-4 TBS of Olive Oil
2 1/2 small lemons or 1 1/4 lemons [give or take]
Salt to taste
Paprika [optional]
A note on ingredients;
Organic canned chick peas are the easiest to deal with, however you can soak half a cup of dried chick peas and cook them in a pot or slow cooker. However, while they aren't the best for you, the Kroger brand reg chick peas have the best consistency for hummus. To achieve the same consistency with organic [it has to do with how much salt is in the can] try cooking in water for a little while, and when you cook them from dried, add some salt [if your not scared! hahaha]
Tahini is hit and miss. I have tried several brands. From Arabic Grocers, to the fancy specialty markets, I have found my favorite for price, color, and flavor in "Biladi Tahina" at Kroger for $4.69 for 16 oz.
When choosing lemons, pick lemons that you can tell have very thin rinds. This will ensure you have the maximum amount of liquid to work with.
You must add salt! Don't be scared! Your hummus will be buh-land without it.
Paprika is for garnishing.

  1. 1. In your food processor add chick peas and pulse untill ALL beans are coarsely chopped.
  2. Add tahini, some salt, about 2 TBS of olive oil, half of your lemons, and start to pulse again.
  3. Once you can tell all of your ingredients are coming together, start pureeing.
  4. Add a little more olive oil and lemons, slowly
  5. Once it starts to become an emulsion, stop adding olive oil but keep adding lemon. You really want you liquid to come from the lemons, not the olive oil, trust me.
  6. Let that baby run! Keep your processor or until it is the thick, creamy consistency we all know and LOVE
  7. *Edit* I have taken some advice [for some reason, I've been SO stubborn and didn't want to do this?] and started adding water at the end! As it's spinning, add about a third of a cup of water slowly. This makes for a more restaurant quality hummus :]

Remember, THIS TAKES PRACTICE! All of these measurments are guesstments based on many experiments. I have been making this on my own [Eamon used to be in charge of this, hehe] for about 6 months and really hit my stride about a month ago. It was good before then, but it takes A LOT to impress me now these days. I used to envy Cafe Medi's hummus, but I can honestly say this makes it so hard for me to buy it from them for 6 times the price[!] when mine is better.

Now go out and try it!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Consumed By Food

The past few days, really couldn't have been better.
  • I wake up, cook and eat breakfast with Lily and Eamon as he heads out the door to work. 
  • Clean up Lily. 
  • Pick up the house a little bit while playing with said Lily. 
  • Put her down for a nap [today I got to nap WITH her!
  • Play and clean some more. 
  • Make lunch for everyone. 
  • Put down Lily for second nap. 
  • Mostly play with Lily and try to keep her not cranky. 
  • Bathe Lily, or just let her play in the bathtub, I really don't mind :]. 
  • Put Lily to bed. 
  • After about 7:30 I have the rest of the evening to myself!
Somewhere in here I prepare supper for Eamon and I, but the rest of the evening I've been able to read, craft, knit, watch a movie. It's been really nice. Lily of course wakes up every now and then and I nurse her back to sleep, but all in all, I've been diggin this week.

[It seems that two weeks ago was a really rough week, last week was a week full of encouragement from every woman, man and child that I know, and this week was just SO blessed and calm and...dare I say it, easy?]

With this new found [and hopefully long lasting!] organization I have stumbled upon, I have found myself in a deep, passionate, unadulterated love affair with food. [The best part is, Eamon's in on it too, mwahahaha!]
I'm listening to In Defense of Food which is really a response to An Omnivore's Delhima. He decided after writing that, people needed to know what TO eat! And I'm reading Real Food; What to Eat and Why by Nina Planck. I can literally feel my stomach get fuller as she talks about the raw milk butter on whole grain bread. Both teach you to stay away from the gimics; low fat, fat free, low carb, carb free, Extra Vitamin blah blah blah, and eat REAL FOOD! Just food people!

This week we did not eat out once, for 21 meals. We did not eat anything premade, and we did not eat anything that wasn't thrown together by the same fingers that are typing now. Neither of us have felt this good in months!

[So I totally, unknowingly just lied then! I had Eamon get me some Chips A'hoy brand cookies because...well lets just say Lily eating solids has taken "that" toll on my body"]

[Another side note: 9 months of being fat, plus labor and delivery are well worth the nearly year and a half of no periods...just sayin.]

For example, right now I am roasting [more like "sun drying" in the oven] grape tomatoes for pizza tonight. Homemade crust [shared here last week], mozzerella, feta, "sundried" tomatoes, and artichokes. Does it get better than that on a Saturday night????
In the morning I have Muesli planned with a fat pat of real butter and a spoonful of honey, after being soaked overnight in milk. HEAVEN.
All of that just to give us enough energy for tomorrow! We recieved our Food Stamps [don't hate!] and since it took them so long, we have accumulated three months worth...stoked doesn't even begin to describe the anticipation Eamon and I have had all week!

Well if no one votes for a recipe tomorrow, I'll pick one at random, but in case you would still like a say; here are this week's options for recipes :]
1. My Hummus recipe [like I said, waaaay better than Saba brand]
2. my Chewy chocolate chip recipe
3. My Spank-a-pita [formally Spanikopita] recipe


Friday, January 15, 2010

Flight of the Conchords Friday

 First and foremost,
one of the two [overdue!] friends I have been waiting on to have her baby [both surprises!] had her TEN POUND, NINE OUNCE baby boy this morning at home! could not be more excited! I woke up in little intervals all night and this morning to keep praying for her, and to find out she did SO great is just so awesome! Congrats Scott and Kate!
[Stephanie, you're next!]

Ok, so I've decided to add a new feature on Fridays. Flight of the Conchords Friday's. Flight of the Conchords are a hilarious comedy troupe from New Zealand that have a show on HBO. We rented it on Netflix and have seen all of season one and can't wait for season one to come out. SO every friday, I'll try to post something related to them, until I run out of material!

Last on the agenda this morning, recipes :]
I want to know what you wanna see on the blog this Sunday. Here are the three contenders for this week:
1. My Hummus recipe [waaaay better than that Saba crap]
2. my Chewy chocolate chip recipe
3. My Spank-a-pita [formally Spanikopita] recipe

leave me a note in the comment section and see if your recipe wins!
Voting open til Sunday morning, and the losers will get a second chance in weeks to come!

and now the always hilarious, mildly inappropriate, oddly attractive
Bret and Jemaine


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Where we go from here

Well, I did something I didn't think I could. I just sent an email to the pastor of The Austin Stone that hopefully is the start of something big. Eamon and I have had a few nights recently of seeking what the Lord is to have us do, where we are to do it, when it's all gonna happen, and so and and so forth.

 Here's an excerpt from the email, and just a small piece of what we are hoping for:
"After several nights of tossing and turning, thinking that Eamon was supposed to find a new career, he felt deeply moved [or stayed?] to continue working in the food industry. Currently working as a sushi chef, he has been trying to figure out how this is supposed to be his ministry. After tears, and personally battling the visions of Eamon working at an overpriced strip mall sushi bar, waiting for a someone drunk enough to ask him about God, the Lord revealed something very beautiful to us both.
We started talking about the wonderful possibility [that may or may not exist] of running a kitchen through and for a church. A program that would be able to offer real food to the community, to the staff, and to the congregation."

If you would like to help us in any way accomplish these goals, we ask that you pray about it, and keep in touch with us.
I will say I'm very excited.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Cuz knowledge is power!

While Lily is down for her nap, and Eamon is sizing up his new finds, I am taking the time to blog about some lovely books I fould at our library trip today.
We all slept AWFULLY last night! And once I thought I was finally gonna get to sleep, Lily woke up at 5 a.m. Not to nurse, cuddle, or get her diaper changed, but to explore. She just thought there were not enough hours the day before for exploring, so she decided that 5 a.m. was the time to do so. Oh, don't you worry, we weren't asleep for this, she felt the need to tell us about her every move. My goodness! And to top it off, once I did go to sleep, a few hours later, I was woken, screaming, because I was dreaming my dad was telling me my mom died...guh-ross.

Any way, after sleeping til 11, yeaaaah, I got up, cooked an amazing breakfast [farmfresh eggs and cinnamin bread can not be beat, ever] and played with Lily before going to the Library.
Oh, I don't know if I mentioned it, but today is Eamon's day off, that is usually when we go to the library.

And today, I scored!
Lily got Baby Genius's Baby Animals. She loves when we make animal noises, so I figured she'd love this :]
Now, for my finds!
Two audio books;
1. A Lion Called Christian by Anthony Bourke and John Rendall

I have seen the Youtube video, and have been eagerly been waiting the movie, and figured this would be perfect to listen to while Lily and I play!

2. In Defense of Food; An Eater's Manifesto by Michael Pollan

As I mentioned in a previous post, he has a new book out and I want to read[listen to] this one before I read the new one...and NRH Library may not have had it yet..

And continuing with the food

3. Real Food; What to Eat and Why by Nina Planck

Just like the case of In Defense of Food, Nina Planck has a newer book,
Real Food for Mother and Baby: The Fertility Diet, Eating for Two, and Baby's First Foods

that I am itching to get my hands on. I have heard nothing but good things about both of these books and look forward to going through it!

4. And once again,Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker: 200 Recipes for Healthy and Hearty One-Pot Meals That Are Ready When You Are

I can't get enough of this book! I plan to copy some of the recipes because all of the ones I have memorized have been AMAZING. So this time I am going to be a little more adventurous with my selections. Can't wait!

Tonight we have been invited to the Salstrand's for dinner and I'm so stinkin excited! We haven't seen them in months and haven't been to their house...since I was huge and pregnant!

lots of love!

we're listening to The Beach Boys right now...Eamon is learning that I don't know any of words, but all of the harmonies...pfft

Monday, January 11, 2010

Craft Swap

Since Lily is being a super grump this afternoon, I only have time for a quicky.

1. Had fun at Katie's this morning with her and Henry
2. The four of us got down on some kale chips.

3. I signed up for this awesome craft swap! You have til Friday to enter!
4. Last night Eamon and I were watching bloopers from The Office [season 4] and it made me fall in love with this man that much more

5. I am even more in love with this elephant, also made by Skunkboy Creatures

I hope you all have a wonderful start to your week!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

I almost forgot!

This weekend has been GREAT!

I was super encouraged by a wonderful card/gift from an anonymous person[s] that I wish I was able to thank. If you read my blog [I have a feeling you do!] THANK YOU! I hope that one day I am able to help others out the exact same way [you know, because we always get to pick out what the Lord wants us to do] the Lord keeps allowing others to help me.

I also have learned to make me chores a little more managable  so I have had some great time to play with Lily! She is at THE FUNNEST stage yet! [It seriously just gets better and better!] We have played, chased each other around the house, learned [I thiiink] that you can't go through glass, and been entertained by some cute baby in the mirror that snuck in our house ;] [strangly enough, she looks just like Lily. Mind-blowing, I know.] Tonight we also learned that she can sit herself up! It's awesome, she rolls on her belly to her side, and then up she goes! She's so thrilled with herself!

And this evening I went with Katie to White Settlement to get a rocking chair I found on Freecycle. We hatched plans for one awesome little two year old's birthday present, made fun [sinners] of some horrible drivers, tried to understand why Lily hates "The Coach", aaand learned that two nursing mothers are apparently incapable of folding down a bench. I don't know how we function together, but thank God we do!

I've also had the opportunity to share my diet with a few of my friends this weekend. It's so awesome to have access to the awesome things I've learned about food, and then get to teach others, without judgement.

The other night while watching The Daily Show with: John Stewart we saw this interview with Micheal Pollan. He is the author of The Omnivore's Dilimma: The Natural History of Four Meals and was promoting his new book, Food Rules: An Eaters Manuel. Whether you like/agree/have-a-crush-on John Stewart or not; you should definately check out this interview [linked above]. I definately will be reading that book soon.

Some more on my family's food :]
I promised to share my pizza recipe, which I soon will, but first I want to tell you about today's shopping trip.
I can rarely shop for a whole weeks worth of food usually for lack of funds, as well as lack of octopus arms. But today, with the help of my husband, I DID IT!

7 Days, 21 meals [yup, we discussed it, and I have to start making b-fast now!], lots of snacks, and 3 foodies later....drumroll...$93! What what?!?! That is including non meal/snakc related items like;
Olive Oil
King Arthur Bread Flour [to die for, I don't know how I made it THIS long without it!]
freezer bags
which adds up to about $14!
I am very, very happy with this. I plan on prepping some of the veggies that'll be used later in the week for the freezer as well as some of Lily's veggies. Eamon also has to go by North Richland Hills Farmer's Market [its ON Davis, but I think this is actually what it's called? whatev] to get eggs and organic avacados. Krogers were DOUBLE what their reg avacados were, so we didn't get any :[ and Lily was very, very mad when I ate some without her!

Ok now the long awaited pizza recipe. I will give you the "you've never had pizza this amazing" version with sidenotes to what I do on lazy nights :]
From start to finish, this pizza can take anywhere from an hour to make, to an all day, B-E-A-utiful event.

First, the dough
It is SO. EASY. [and stolen from Michelle Monk]
1 TBS active dry yeast [or whatever yeast method you usually go with]
1 cup warm water (105-110 degrees)
2 1/2 cups flour. [you can use all purpose, but trust me, even if you just use half of King Author's Bread Flour, you will notice a HUGE difference]
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
2 TBS olive oil [plus some to coat the dough with during the rise]

  • Dissolve yeast in water [about 5 minutes? I usually do this while getting the rest of the ingredients together]
  • Stir and add in the rest of the ingredients
  • Dump on to floured surface and kneed [You want a tight skin when you roll it in to a ball that doesn't tear] [WATCH ALTON BROWN'S EPISODE ON PIZZA DOUGH!]
  • Let rise [now, you can do this for 15-30 mins, or hours at a time, the choice is yours!
  • once ready to work with the dough, preheat oven to 450 with your pizza stone inside
  • on floured surface, roll [or toss/stretch!] dough into your desired shape
  • Add sauce, cheese, veggies
  • Bake 12-15 minutes
  • Makes two really good sized pizzas! Eamon and I eat about one and a half now!
Just so you know this is what we do for toppings:
Sauce- Hunt's tomato paste. It's actually all natural! No preservatives or funky oils! One tiny can makes two pizzas worth!
Seasoning- We buy Sprouts "Garlic and Herb" mix from their spice bulk section and generously sprinkle it over the sauce
Cheese- Again, we love Sprout's selection the best. This past week we just used mozzerella and parmessian. Sometimes [like this week] we add feta, YUM
Veggies- we never add meet bc I'm a vegetarian, and Eamon thinks there is something sacreligious about putting pork on pizza, so we always add just a few veggies. DON'T CROUD THE PIZZA! The veggies won't cook properly.
And lastly- We top it off with a splash of olive oil and salt and pepper.

I hope you had an equally awesome weekend!

Friday, January 8, 2010

A very, very unbirthday to LILY!

Today is my beautiful baby girl's first half birthday!
With lots of help from family and friends, you have survived six whole months!
This may take all day t o write, but that's ok :] I want to get the words just right.

While awaiting your arrival, I found myself in awe and disbelief that "other moms" would sit and pine over the last three months, the last nine months, the last five years. [none of whom could beat my own mother's pining for my newborn-ness AND Lily's simultaneously!] I sat and waited for you for nine months that seemed like an eternity so I couldn't begin to imagine what a "blur" of six months could feel like. But sugar, while I want to say I would give anything to have you back in my belly, snug and safe and kicking around [pre twenty pound giant dough baby] that couldn't be further from the truth. while it has gone by quicker than I thought it would, these past six months have been well spent living in the now. The naked, giggly, messy now.

Upon meeting you, my life is forver changed. While I became a woman of God the day I married daddy, leaving the life of being a child in my dust, your existance has made me more of a woman than I thought possible, a mother. Throughout my life I have learned that conceiving, giving birth to, sheltering, and feeding a child dosn not always a mother make. Love, discipline, and nourishment arre absolute necessities that must be present. I am humbled to be be able to call nyself a mother. It is something I have wanted longingly my whole life.

You are the prettiest, most curious, and most easy going baby I've ever met!
Your humur has me cracking up every day!

5 days old

12 weeks old

5 months old

Sometimes I feel like it's just me and you. That we are in this together and we just have to stick it out, one spill at a time. But you have the best daddy ever. His desire to provide for you, to love you, and to ensure you a world that you can see Jesus in is astounding. If the world could only see your face light up when he comes home at night, I have to say, that makes it all worth it.

We love you so much, more than I thought possible, and as you lay here, sleeping in my lap, I am thankful. Thank you Jesus for giving me this perfect, rambunctious gift. Thank you for allowing me to raise my child without the gimics, without the doubt, and with all the courage that a woman could ask for. I look forward to the day when you bless my Lily with the same honor.


Oh PS!
Check back later bc I will be uploading some picture of all the pretty things I've made Lily with week :]

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Frigid Foolishness

Today is extremely cold here today! We're talkin below 0 with windchill tonight! Ah! That means that Lily and I have been having a ball! I'm trying to get her to crawl by the time he comes home for lunch. She's taking a breaky-break right now for her afternoon nap [please no more power naps!] but will be up 'n' at 'em as soon as she's recooped.

*I'm currently listening to NPR's Fresh Air interview with Raiin Wilson, can I just say I LOVE HIM, and his name, very heavily considering naming one of our children Raiin. It's pronouced like Ryan but with long vowels! LOVE it!*

We braved the freezing temps this morning to go to Kroger to get food for the next few days so I won't have to go out in any more of this weather. I wanted to share with you my grocery list :]
Eamon gave me $35 in cash for my spending limit. As I ate my cereal [I HATE having cereal most mornings, but we were out of eggs] and fed Lily sweet potatos [uh-dor-uh-ble]I came up with our meals for the next few days.

A quick look at our weekly plan
Monday: Italian
Tuesday: Easy [this is Eamon's day off, so whatever he wants-we eat!]
Wednesday: Legums
Thursday: Asian [This usually means Thai, Chinese, Indian, Vietnamese, etc]
Friday: Soup or Stew
Saturday: Pizza :] [always homemade, its RIDICULOUSLY cheap!]
Sunday: Cleanse [we try to eat only what we would eat on SP Cleanse's 21 Day Cleanse as part of our Sabbath]

So this morning I had to think about;
Lunch and supper for today, Friday, and Saturday and here's what I came up with:
Thursday: I have Rotini and Shells in the cupboard so I decided to use that for pasta for lunch. I found this recipe last night and decided I MUST try it tonight for supper
Friday: For lunch I plan to use some of the noodles that we don't use tonight to make Pad Thai, and for supper kidney bean and couliflower curry. It is absolutely delicious! I found the recipe in one of my favorite cookbooks Fresh from the Vegetarin Slow-Cooker. I learned SO much from that book!
Saturday: I'm not sure about lunch yet, so that I did admiltingly fail, but for supper, as always its pizza night! I'll post my recipe for it then :]

Now for the proof:
Here is what my receipt looked like today [so I don't have to type"organic" everything I will just put an "O" on all organic produce :]
Onion .89
Roma tomato .28
O Cauliflower 2.79
Broc [Kroger's organic brocoli was disgusting! wilted and moldy...yuck! Lily can't have any now >:/ ] 1.78
O Lemon .72
O Avocados 2.78
O Bananas .73! [They were on sale bc they were "ripe"!]
O Almond Milk 1.99 [Again, on sale!]
Speghetti sauce 2.00
Peanut Sauce 3.49 [my most expensive purchase, something we consider a "specialty item"]
Kidney beans .84
Kidney beans .84
Coconut water .89 [Lily's been dehydrated lately and our chiro suggested this!]
Coconut water .89
Coconut milk 1.39
Hunts tomato paste .85
Cage free eggs 2.39 [did not go to the farmers market, have you been outside?]
Flat bread 2.49
Tofu 1.79
Soba Noodles 2.49
AND a BPA free sippy cuppy thing for Lily for, drumroll... 1.99! [ON SALE!]

All of this for a grand total of $34.46!

Well, Eamon is on his way home so I need to get lunch started!
I hope this helped, even though I know my realization of the time has made me totally loose my train of thought.
Leave a comment with any questions you may have!


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A very, very unbirthday to me!

Today is my half birthday :] I am 20 and a half years of age, haha!

I'm grabbing a quick snack [Soba noodles, YUM] before I make supper [that makes little sense... I know!] and chocolate chip cookies to go with our UNBELIEVABLE raw milk that Kate brought me the other day. It's like whipped cream compared to my wimpy almond milk! I was looking up soba noodles for the link above and found this recipe! DEFINITELY will be trying that tomorrow night!

Today was so good!

Got up early to put some laundry in the wash before we ran errands. Got adjusted, and ran into one of my midwives [<3!] Then Eamon and I parted our ways as I went to bible study and he went to work. It's been...threeish, maybe four weeks since we've all got together due to births and the holidays. But this morning most of us were able to enjoy eachother's company and talk about all the things that have been going on the past month! I'm SO blessed to have these women. We use simular parenting techniques [Lily just did her pterodactyl tell from her nurse her back to sleep, or not to nurse her back to sleep. I swear we had this conversation earlier!] [oh and if I don't, she'll just crawl, ahem, scoot in here, since our bed is on the floor. wah, wah, wah] have babies at all stages, and are IN LOVE with Jesus. It's always a day of the week that I look forward to.

Any way, after that we came home. Lily played as I checked my blogs [my FB withdrawal is starting to kill me!] and then out of pure exauhstion, I got Lily to take an hour and a half nap with me...too bad I kept waking up to see what time it was. ugh. Then Eamon came home for lunch [Hooray!] which was so much fun! I LOVE preparing Lily little meals with us. She loves sitting at the table with us and gettin down on her veggies :] she's so cute. After all of that I cleaned up the house some, and played with Lily a TON before she needed a cat nap. I recovered a rocking chair that I have that was my mom's since she was a baby[!] and it turned out better than I expected. Then the funnest part came! Lily woke up and we did a tour of the house, scootin style! I had her follow me around and it was just awesome! All night she has been taking these two and three step/crawl-thingies. I think that by her half birthday she will be crawling! That's just two days away!

Well, it took me almost exactly ten minutes to get her back to sleep! not bad!

I've totally lost my train of thought, so off to pick up my house before the Eamon comes home! Hope you all stay bundled up tonight for the "Artic Blast!" that's coming in :]


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Just another Manic Monday...

That followed me to Tuesday!

Eamon is at a job interview right now and I'm anxiously waiting around here to watch how it all pans out...BREATH!
We ran around this morning looking for "office interview" clothes at Ross and Target and got some pretty good stuff! I'm just gonna throw out there, my man looks FUH-INE! Katie cut his hair this morning [because let's face it, it looked REAL "My wife cuts my hair, and?"] and then went out and bought a white button up, a sweater vest, nice slacks, dress shoes and socks.

Two points here;
  • One, when we got back to the car Eamon very seriously said "If I don't get this job, this is aaaall going back." Hahaha!
  • Two, can I just say that it takes true love to let your girlfriend make you grow your hair out, dye it red, and wear skinny jeans only to have her become your wife to make you go to Target to buy hair product and a sweater vest? Ha! I love us!

Any way, while at Katie's she showed me her newly rearranged [clean!] bedroom. Oh. My. Goodness. It was adorable, it was comfy, it was [sexy], it was everything I want for our bedroom. Too bad I have a fat six month old [sad day!] that sleeps with us that prevents any of that from happening!

Well, when we finally move that adorable chunk into her own room, I have an idea! Our nickname for Lily is often Tiger Lily. One because she's often growling at things and two because she's rambunctious an incomprehensible like Peter Pan's character, Princess Tiger Lily!

[my upstairs neighbor just came by to borrow an egg! All I can think about is her doing it with her husband! ICK!]

So for our Tiger Lily, I have come up with several ideas, my favorite was inspired by this b-e-a-utiful TeePee that I saw on Smile and Wave not too long ago

Tell me that's not one of the most awesome ideas, ever! We all sleep on the floor as it is, so I was thinking about finding her a toddler mattress and making the teepee big enough to go around the whole bed! Then I could work on the magical bedroom of my own!

Eamon's been gone for over an hour! Good news I hope? Eh? breath....

Oh, and just a quick thank you for all the emails/comments/texts/@replies I got about my Organic Eating post! It really made me feel good to know that people don't think I'm completely crazy. Or dumb. Ok, maybe you think I'm just one and not the other. I will try my best to be diligent about posting every Sunday about food. YUM!

Now I have to make my shop presentable since mae flowers [which is closed while I'm putting new lovely things up] will be on Etsy's Cozy Home and Attire Showcase starting tonight at Midnight! Also, my new friend Chelsea over at Three Birds is having a giveaway soon!

Now to continue playing the waiting game...eeeek!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Organic eating without the organic prices

So on my Facebook, I OFTEN brag about my shopping adventures and how amazing I am. Let me first apologize for being so unbelievably prideful, I just get so excited! To understand why, lemme give you a bit of info about my family and myself.

[This post was started at 4;35 p.m., with a crawling Lily, lets see how long this takes!]

There are three of us in our household; Eamon, Lily, and me.
We'll start with Eamon.
Eamon was home-schooled, a 4H champion for various dishes, child of a Julia Child instructed mother, and self -taught [wife proclaimed] Iron Chef. When we got married, up to the time I had Lily actually, Eamon did most of the meal planning, preparation...and sometimes clean up!

Lily, up until recently, was a milkaterian so her part in this discussion MAY seem minimal, but you are oh so wrong. Whatever nutrients I am/aren't getting, Lily does/doesn't get as well. So, her adorable parasitic ways have a drastic influence on my diet. For instance, if I eat dairy [especially soft or processed cheese] she gets diaper rash. That my friends, is called a food allergy. Which shouldn't surprise me considering I am lactose-intolerant. [If you think about it, we are forcing our bodies to do something that is very unnatural by eating dairy-especially cow- because our stomachs were made to digest human milk. The closest thing to this being goat's milk. I'm not advocating women be hooked up to udder suckers for mass produced consumption or anything, but think about it...]

Which brings us to the crazy mixed up wonder that we like to call me! I, like many families, grew up on Food Stamps, drank a gallon of Kool-Aid every day, and enjoyed that wonderful chemestry project known as "WIC cheese". Yup, I grew up on gov'ment food, but my mother did the best she could with what she thought she was given.
Allow me to sidetrack momentarily- I think it is a crime that "goverment food" was the crappiest food out there. Our nations goverment made it a point to make the cheapest food, the food that is poisenous to our nations poor, setting them up for constant visits to the doctor, and earlier deaths. By putting us/them on "their" diet, "they" are essentially killing the poor. An outright crime I tell you. Fortunately with the "invention" of the Lone Star card you are given an amount of money to spend at the grocery store however you please.
When I was a freshman in highschool I decided to become vegetarian, and a few years later I found Biblical conviction as well as conviction from the Holy Spirit as to why I should be and should stay a vegetarian. I am now, with much prayer, a pisca-ovo-lacto vegetarian. Which in short means I do not eat any PART of an animal, not even broth. I eat fish and eggs after the Lord told me I am unable [this is only MY situation He was speaking to] to eat the adequate amount of protein for both me and Lily. We occasionally eat cheese [once a week on Pizza Night ;] but other than that, try to keep down on our dairy for fear of a cranky baby and a wrecked septic system]

Ok, so there is a brief...personal... history for all of us.

Most people are shocked to find out I cook 7 days a week, usually two meals a day for the whole family [lunch and dinner for Eamon, breakfast and snacks for Lily, breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner for me] and none of it is "heat and eat" its all from scratch. There are a few exceptions- a speghetti sauce that we LOVE that is cheap, hearty, and good for you, occasional cereal or instant oatmeal, and that's pretty much it now that I think about it.
My good friend/chiropractor/nutrition consultant/call-when-I-have-no-idea-what-to-do-buddy Cindy wrote a fantastic blog this morning on eating organic. I know I, as well as many of her awesome readers have thought, "ya...but you're a can afford that!" A few months ago I challenged myself to eat as much organic as possible without going over our budget. I am very pleased to say, IT CAN BE DONE!

Here are some tricks I've learned.
  • Meal plan- I want to say this is the most important thing for me. I have acquired several cookbooks and blogs that I have read avidly in very small tidbits, to really understand a.) What kind of cook I am [therefore what I am capable of] and b.) What my family enjoys. Meal planning cuts down on the stress of "what to eat"
  • Write a grocery list- this goes hand in hand with meal planning. you will be able to avoid buying food that you don't need and allow you save a ton of money by avoiding the "just in cases"
  • buy bulk- I do NOT in any means mean go to Wal Mart and by the biggest pack of whatever the heck it is in order to save a few pennies here and there! Companies that allow this sort of consumerism are hurting someone, somewhere, and your dollars are fueling it! What I mean is the bulk section of your local grocer. For example; a 15oz can of Kroger brand Chicpeas is $.89. A 15oz can of Kroger brand organic Chicpeas is $.99. A 15oz can of namebrand organic Chicpeas can be anywhere from $1.19 to $2.29! [!] BUT at Sprouts, [look for the "health food" grocery store in your area. Sun Harvest, Sunflower Shoppe, Sprouts, those sort of things are all good. VERY impractical for all of your shopping, but a MUST for this sort of thing.] They have the same organic Chicpeas dried for $.99 a pound! A pound is roughly two cups or 16 oz, BUT once soaked, its almost DOUBLE that! so instead of $.89 for a 15 oz can of Kroger brand, you end up with 16 oz of organic beans for less than 50 CENTS!
  • READ- KNOW WHAT YOU ARE BUYING! Just because something says its organic, doesn't always mean its the best. "Organic" companies are still allowed to use herbicides, some of which are still VERY harmful to humans. An brands that don't neccesarily say organic, can STILL be good for you! For example, Eamon's dad owned a cattle ranch. He had free roaming, grass fed, antibiotic free cattle sold for their meat. They were organic by all means, but his dad couldn't afford the "Organic" liscence, so he never got it :\ But, any way, if you start to really get to know the companies you buy from, and know what the ingredients are, shopping is going to get easier, quicker, and cheaper!
  • Buy local! This is good for so many reasons! You help your fellow neighbor by supporting his business as well as the growes he/she buys from. The more you buy local, the easier the business can lower their prices. One thing I try my hardest to buy locally is our eggs. We only eat brown eggs from grain fed, free roaming nesting hens. Even at Kroger they are only $.20 more! But just a few blocks down the street from my house [it's very important to support the one closest to you!] Davis Farmer's Market sells a crate of 20 huge, farm fresh eggs for $3.99. Here's the math: when I buy Kroger brand eggs I spend $2.39 for a dozen which is just less than $.20 an egg. When you talk about how many I eat for breakfast [3 every morning! not including lily's egg yolk, or any bking I may do] that is $.60 a day. But when you look at the eggs from the farmer's market, also slightly less than $.20 a day, you may not need me to go further, but because they are so much bigger and filling, I can only eat two, saving TWENTY CENTS a day! The same twenty cents that kept you from buying the eggs in the first place!
Know that this is going to take some time. I started doing this avidly, without wriggle room about three months ago. Now and can shop for the whole week for about $100! Including all of Lily's purely organic fruits and veggies!

All of these things have helped me and my family stay healthy, and very happy. I have decided that I will do a "food" post once a week to show you how we do it in more detail!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

A Lazy Saturday Would Be Ideal Part 1

While Lily lazily lunges about the living room, I will try to get my blogging done for today, instead of waiting til the twilight hours of the interwebs. Because today my friends, is a very chaotic day indeed!

I have on my list of To-dos:
[blugh---I just found a red spot in one of my hard boiled eggs....oh no]
Find somewhere to do my laundry. To save you the same headache I have since acquired from this nauseating experience I will just say that Lily has no clean diapers, and Eamon no clean socks...I bet this place REAKS!
--aaand there's the text! Katie, you are a lifesaver my friend! My family's noses, feet, and butts thank you kndly!

Now off to go wash said stinky stash!
I'll be back!

*loving alliteration today, can you tell?

Friday, January 1, 2010

On the move

Since Lily is asleep...aaaand, sec.
I swear, she has to have a little hidden baby pager in her diaper that goes off any time I try to get down to business!

Now it's play time-I guess.

Well, anyhow, back to my story.
2010 was FANTASTIC, until...2:00ish?
I was working on a mixed media cartoon of Lily and by the time 2 came along... I hated it... who knows, maybe tomorrow I can salvage it, but after working several hours on it...ugh... I just don't want to.

If this gives you any clue to how my day went: I got home over an hour ago, and haven't put away the groceries. The advantage/curse of being a vegetarian.

Today, and yesterday...and the day before have really made me HATE where I live. My apartment complex is driving me crazy.
I here my next door neighbors snore, YES SNORE! every night.
My upstairs neighbors salsa dance with elephants and do it-constantly! Which would be slightly better [ok I lied, it wouldn't] if they were married
The water has been on and off every day for the past three days therefore I cannot wash my clothes OR Lily's diapers...[can you see the steam from my ears from where you are?] Which means Eamon is going to have to pick up diapers from Kroger on his way home...ACK!
It is awesome that we aren't on the streets, but we're about to be in the nut-house I tell ya!

On top of all this Lily is crawling...well mobile in every way that is close to crawling. And dangit..I just don't know what to do! I never realized there is so much crap on my floor! I'm CONSTANTLY cleaning, but it still looks like a disaster area in here. She has found everything from bottle caps to my underwear, to a dead spider [her personal favorite], to every last piece of scrap that has escaped the rigorous efforts of my failing eyes, trusty broom, and borrowed vacuum cleaner.

Well to brighten my spirits, I have been drooling over some picks of how my family would LOVE to move :]

This post has taken hour. good. grief. charlie brown.