Wednesday, November 10

Moving up to sous chef.

I'm ready! Lets get baking!

Mixing? You need mixing?! I got ya covered mama!

Mmm mmmm, worth all that hard work. Definitely.

Sunday, October 31

A necklace for Leila. Aka- I made a pup collar.

Meet Leila. She's a 4 month old little Labradoodle girl. Such a sweet thing she is, too. She's been with us for a month now and fits right in with the family. And she seems to be loving her new pup collar. :)


I didn't follow a pattern for the collar, but I do think I remember seeing one in Amy Karol's Bend the Rules book, although her's was all fabric.

To make the collar, I sewed a strip of 5/8th inch ribbon onto 1-inch webbing and cut that to Leila's neck size plus ~6-inches (to accommodate for her growth and for threading through the buckle clasp). I did sandwich a little vertical loop of ribbon between the webbing and ribbon so that I could hang Leila's vaccine tags (off a small D-ring, not shown).

I have the collar threaded with the tail on the outside to show best how it's made, but it can also be threaded with the tail on the inside, so that you don't see the underside of the webbing at all. It really doesn't matter either way. Also, Leila wears a harness when we go on walks, so we don't attach the leash directly to her collar. If I did though, I'd add a D-ring vertically next to the un-adjustable end of the buckle before sewing down the webbing. If that makes sense.?

And heck, if you make one, while you're already sewing ribbon to webbing, you might as well throw together a matching key fob as well.  These would make great gifts, too! :)

Saturday, October 30

First birthday- and crowning my little prince.


My littlest one, Logan, celebrated his first birthday last week. Last month when I saw how much Gunnar loved the paper birthday crown that his teachers had made for him, I knew I had to make something similar for Logan.  I wanted it to be fabric though, and ideally adjustable. And then I remembered this tutorial I had bookmarked a while back. Perfect!

The crown should fit Logan's head for a while, too. It didn't quite fit on my head, but almost, so that's promising for longevity. ;)
We had a nice family picnic celebration on Logan's actual birthday, and then had a little celebration party at home over the weekend. Well, we celebrated until poor little Logan got tangled up in fire ants and suffered a pretty bad allergic reaction.  Yep. Not pretty at all. :(

I know, it's blurry. But I still love this pic. Big brother was so excited for Logan. Such sweet boys I have. :)
Happy birthday to my sweet, silly, beautiful little Logan! I can't believe you are ONE. 

Thursday, October 7

Brown Sugar Salami Chips

Let me just start by saying these chips are FANTASTIC. They don't make it past 20 minutes max in my house without being devoured (and its really only that long because they need to cool a bit first!). Gunnar LOVES them, and when all the chips are gone, he'll sit there,  focused, searching out every last little crumb. But heck, if it wasn't him, his daddy or I probably would be doing the same thing! No waste here, not with these bad boys.
The recipe was in Jewish Living Magazine from 2008. Here it is with my notes interjected:
Arrange one layer of thin salami slices on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 325ºF until edges are crisp, about 30 minutes (Add 5 or 10 minutes on if needed to get those edges crisping). Remove from parchment and blot dry on paper towels. Combine 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar and 1 tablespoon water in a large, microwave-safe bowl (You only need 2T if you are making just half the salami). Microwave about 30 seconds until bubbly. Add chips, stir gently, and return them to the oven on a fresh sheet of parchment to bake 3 to 4 minutes at 300ºF (My chips usually need 5-7 minutes, and I get impatient and will often up the temp to 350 or 400. Yep. Breakin' the rules..ha).
Make sure you slice the salami as thin as you can. Or if you get it from a deli, have them do it for you! My slices are thin but do vary in thickness, which is kinda nice, so some come out softer or more crispy than others. But you cant beat how thin the deli can slice them (more like regular chips!). And FYI, the slices will shrink to about half there size. I've always used Hebrew National Salami as it got the best ranking out of 5 salami's reviewed in Jewish Living Magazine, from a 2008 feature. But I'm sure any salami would work fine.

Hope you enjoy these as much as we do!

Wednesday, October 6

Third year birthday canvas.

Okay okay, I promise this will me my last third birthday related post. ;) But I had to share G's third canvas, of course! This year Gunnar was a bit more purposeful with his art.
I secretly cringed a little when he began mixing and muddling the paint colors together. But it's his painting, so I bit my tongue and let him have his way. I'm glad I did, though, because I think he makes beautiful art. 
He calls it "Lots of fish, and a bird." The bird is the purple-ish creation on the bottom right side.

I am so glad he wanted to smash his hands in paint. Those little hand prints are so special to me and really mark him as such a big boy, and still so little, at the same time.
Not a great picture, but here they are together, clockwise from first birthday, hanging on my bedroom wall above my dresser.  Logan's first birthday canvas will fill that fourth spot in less than a month (yikes!).

Tuesday, September 28

First Fishing Trip

Uncle Chris flew in to take G on his first fishing venture for his birthday. My brother travels all over the world to fish, hunt waterfalls, hike and the like. G's been asking to go fishing, but hubs held off from taking him because we knew this would be something really special for Uncle Chris to do with G. And then hubs could take over from there. ;)


 The first fish caught of many. :)

Logan and I tagged along to take pics and walk around the park.
Let me just say Gunnar had a BLAST. For those of you Dallas readers, we hit Sunnyvale Town Park. It is absolutely teeming with fish!  

And to close out, here's a fun video Uncle Chris took:
video

Three.

My little boy turned three a week ago.  
My sweet, smart, funny, curious, active little boy is growing up too fast.
Grandma and Grandpa flew in for the weekend and we headed out to Ft Worth to ride the miniature rails per Gunnar's request.
Round trip this train is almost a 45 minute ride!
I wasn't planning on making him an official cake for his birthday since he didn't have a formal party, and while he did have cupcakes with all his school friends, my mommy guilt still hit and I scrambled during nap time to throw something together. Worth everything to hear my now 3 year old offer up a huge "Thank you mommy, I love it!" with big wide excited and surprised eyes.
It's not amazing in terms of a cake, but I'm pretty darn proud of how it turned out considering it came to life in a pinch!
I had one car left over, so I let Gunnar decorate it the next night and we sang happy birthday all over again. 
This was so much fun for him, I think every year Ill let him decorate his own personal mini cake or cupcake to blow out the candles on. 
Happy birthday little man! Your dad and I are so proud of you and feel so lucky to call you our son. 

Wednesday, August 18

Garden Friends.

Hubs has a few bearded dragons that live in his classroom, but he brought one home for the summer for Gunnar to play with. She went back to school this week with hubs though, and Gunnar was missing her, so I thought we'd do some lizard art in her honor.  I had an idea in mind, but then I came across this blog post from Se7en via Skip to My Lou, and decided we'd make a lizard (and friends!) for the garden instead. Gunnar loved them. :)

Monday, August 16

Unicorn shrimp.

Let me just say, we love, love, love Asian food. And Asian markets! We had a little free time this past weekend so we headed to check out Asian World Market to get our fix (in Plano, for those of you in Dallas). Our favorite Asian market out here is H-Mart (in Carrolton) hands down for prices, selection and the 'experience,' but it's fun to mix things up every now and again.

Anyhow, hubs offered to make dinner.  (I sure wasn't going to turn that down!) We had Summer Rolls and Scott's make-it-up-as-you-go crab and greens Asian soup. 
Doesn't it look so good?! We totally polished off that tower. Dip those rolls into the homemade peanut sauce and sweet chili sauce and mmmmmmm, mmmmm, mmmmm!
(Hey, see those soup bowls?! I threw those (aka- potter's wheel) when we were dating, and still love them! If I only still had access to a kiln, *sigh*.)

The soup was really good, too. Scott made these crab/fish balls for it (haha, fish balls. Oh, come on, fish don't have balls! get your mind right! hehe), and threw in a mixture of greens (sweet peas, baby bok choy, seaweed), and some other ingredients.. sorry, he was cooking, I just ate it happily. ;) 

And who the heck knew Shrimps were a member of the UNICORN family?!!! Dang!, he could poke your eye out! That horn thing was hecka sharp. (No, we do NOT eat the heads. No way!)

To drink, something coconut of course! We usually buy young fresh coconuts and simply pop a straw down in 'em, but we came across these bottles that claim "Taste Nirvana" and "Happiness in a bottle".. hmm, thats a hefty claim, don't you think?
Um, no, completely right on! Only wish we didn't buy just two of them.. darn!

Posting these pics, I wish we hadn't scarfed down all those summer rolls in one sitting! Must put the husband on dinner duty again real soon. ;)

Saturday, August 14

Pears a plenty.

We've been waiting a few years for the pear tree to give us a good fruiting. Last year most of the blossoms dropped after some heavy wind swept through, so we only got 3 or 4 pears.  Our peach tree consistently is an incredibly good producer; We had TONS of peaches throughout the early part of this summer. And now, finally, looks like the pear tree is beginning to follow suit!

Gunnar gathered a bunch of pears that blew off from a recent storm. These were the little guys, perfect for little hands to eat easily. Small, but really tasty! Still have double that amount growing on the tree, and those are full size.


Here's Gunnar with one of his neighbor friends eating pears they cut up themselves. They pretend the playhouse is their restaurant kitchen and cook us food to order. But even the cooks need a snack now and then!

Nothing like fresh picked, sweet and juicy pears grown at home. Even Logan loves them. :)

And some nice tomatoes and (overgrown, oops!) cucumbers we picked today, too!