Tuesday, August 31, 2010

End of Summer

Over Labor Day weekend, on cue, summer ended. We could feel and smell autumn in the air. We squeezed in one last swim, walked on a beach, rode an old wooden carousel and danced to a band.

But we also made chili, cuddled indoors, and watched some college football.
Goodbye Summer. It was grand.
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Friday, August 27, 2010

Watermelon Coolers and Popsicles

It's still summertime for us, it's been over 90 and school doesn't start until after Labor Day. I'm soaking it in. We adapted a delicious recipe for these Watermelon Coolers.

For ours we used:
9 full cups chopped seedless watermelon (around 3 batches in the blender)
Fresh lime juice, I'd try 3 or 4 limes depending on size plus another for garnish
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
Dash of salt

Blend watermelon in batches in blender; process until smooth. Strain watermelon through a sieve into a pitcher; keep solids for another use. Combine sugar and water, bring to a boil, give a couple stirs, boil 2 more minutes. Let mixture (simple syrup) cool. Into strained watermelon juice stir in simple syrup, lime juice and a dash of salt. Serve over ice. Garnish with mint and lime slices. Add 1 1/2 ounces vodka or white rum per serving, if desired. So refreshing.

Then we kept the solids and froze them for some easy popsicles. Next time I will add a touch of the simple syrup and watermelon juice to add a bit more flavor, but my kids ate them just so.

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{this moment}

Every Friday, a moment to remember, no words. Inspired by soulemama.
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My Birthday

This year was the first year I had started to feel older, but for my birthday I felt anything but that. It was the kind of weekend where we had some things planned, but mostly it all just fell into place on it's own. Any worries were left behind, and we were simply enjoying the moment.

Visiting old friends' new home, wine and champangne tastings, Counting Crows and Augustana concert in the park, some sausage and jerky from an unusual butcher shop, a delicious picnic.

My new 'vintage' bicycle from my husband. I never said anything to him, and I don't know how he picked something out of my daydreams. (it even has a bell, I love it!)

Al fresco dining with friends at the gazebo, Thai food and ice cream cake and miniature cupcakes from the bakery (the BEST strawberry cream cake I've ever had), flower bouquets from our garden, discovering a crabapple tree with the sweetest little apples, children playing outside and enjoying hay rides. Oh if every weekend were like this!

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Thursday, August 19, 2010

{this moment}

Every Friday, a moment to remember, no words. Inspired by soulemamama.

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Garden Update

So, our first year of gardening and we're learning a lot. We've lost some crops to rabbits and groundhogs. We have cabbage worm and some tomato disease, and weeds out of control. Things were slow to start.

But it's really brought such a joy to our lives to have this garden. We've enjoyed the best sugar snap peas, green onion, sweet lettuce and green beans. Our tomatoes are ripening and peppers are growing like mad. Pumpkin, squash, zucchini, and watermelon tendrils are reaching great lengths, and I think the beets and carrots are near ready. Pretty amazing.

Tomatoes, jalapenos, green beans, squash blossom, flowers and wild mint.

Must wear boots for stomping in the mud.

One for me, one for the basket, she says.

Green bean in mouth.
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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Blueberry Picking

All were eaten. I guess we'll have to go back for another visit so I can make some muffins, pancakes and crumbles.

Friday, August 13, 2010

{this moment}

Every Friday, a moment to remember, no words. Inspired by soulemamama.

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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

An August Weekend

A visit to the state fair filled with farm animals, roller coasters, funnel cakes and cotton candy.

Enjoying tomatoes straight from the garden.

Putting our feet up to relax a bit and enjoy a cook-out.

Cool tents for hot days.

Flying a kite on a gorgeous day.

Homemade strawberry marshmellow cake for our friends birthday. (White cake layered with a thin layer of strawberry jam, and loads of fluffy seven minute frosting, topped with fresh berries. Yum.)

And miniature bunting inspired by this.

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Monday, August 9, 2010

Dreamy Days of Summer

This is my favorite image by Sara Norris Photography.
Her photographs are so dreamy, they fill your head with softness and light.
I've always loved this picture, but it especially reminds me of now.
Days around here have been muggy, slow, sometimes rain but then always sun. Some grey and some light. Sunset has been my favorite part. The children are always up late, the days are long, and by the end we are so tired. But it is so good.
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Dinner this Week

Steak and sauteed mushroom tostada with cotija cheese, a salty grating cheese. I really like to top these with Sriracha chili sauce .

I don't think I made one thing off of last week's menu! So we're going to be recycling some things this week. We had a fun and busy week which included a lot of eating leftovers and some eating out, and some dinner invitations.

M: Beef tostadas with tomato and shredded cheese, side of guacamole
T: Parmesan chicken breasts and zucchini cakes with spinach salad
W: Slow cooker pulled pork sandwiches with broccoli slaw
Th: Leftovers with a fresh garden salad
F: Grilled cheeseburgers and caprese salad
S: Grilled kitchen sink pizza
Su: Grilled sausages, crispy rosemary potatoes, spinach salad

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Thursday, August 5, 2010

{this moment}

Capturing a moment, a moment to remember, one photo, no words. Inspired by -soulemama
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