Friday, June 19, 2009

A Hiatus

Sorry for the lack of posts over the past week - our laptop abruptly stopped working. It was sent out for service and we hope to have it back in two weeks. Upon it's return we'll be back to our regular blogging routine. See you then!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Saturday Dessert

We always have at least one homemade goody around the kitchen for an after dinner treat but on Saturdays we've gotten in the routine of making something special. Today it was s'mores. A gooey mess was stretched from one end of the kitchen to the other but it was worth it. It was our first attempt at making marshmallows (similar recipe here) and graham crackers (recipe here) from scratch. The marshmallow recipe we used will require some tweaking but the graham crackers were so tasty, much better than store bought - I'm dreaming of a homemade graham cracker crust right now. For some reason the marshmallows wouldn't toast using the gas grill (they just liquefied) - but the s'mores were delicious anyway!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Haircut Time

It was time for Dean's haircut - an every other week affair around here. Grace loves to assist, as seen in the picture above. After she was finished with her part she handed over the razor and said, "make ture you cut Daddy's bangs, I can't reach them". Oh, not to worry - Dean's ears and scalp are fully intact and he's not missing any patches of hair!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Banana Ice Cream

We had several bananas sitting on the counter that were past their prime. My usual go to recipe to prevent throwing the over-ripe fruit in the trash has been Banana Cupcakes from "Cooking Light" (found here). But today I found a new one - Roasted Banana Ice Cream from "The Perfect Scoop" by David Lebovitz. Once the roasted bananas came out of the oven I had to resist the urge to sample them (photo above). I patiently waited until after dinner to taste the final product (photo below) - it was sooo delicious!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A Great Start

We've had a great start to our week - Grace, the dogs and I headed to Meme and Pop's house for an overnight visit while Dean had the opportunity to stay at the office late. The time always goes by so fast but here's some of what we enjoyed:

...Grace scraping the last of the "magic" pudding cake into the pan while Meme helped hold the bowl. During our visit we also made pizza from scratch and a batch of vanilla ice cream.

...Grace getting measured by Pop - a ritual the two of them have shared since she was able to walk.

...Grace and I with Grandpa. We had a wonderful time visiting with him - he showed us around his new condo then we (Meme and Pop came too) had a yummy lunch together at one of his favorite restaurants, E and E Steakout.

The time spent with family is priceless!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

The Last Pouch

Up until now Grace's breakfast of choice has been a package of "Little Bites" chocolate chip muffins and a yogurt drink. However, today she ate the last pouch! Dean and I decided once the current supply of muffins ran out they would not be replenished (for reasons such as: low nutritional value, not knowing what half the ingredients were and cost). What will she choose to accompany her yogurt drink? We'll find out in the morning!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

The Dolls

The little dolls are finished! We used the pattern from The Black Apple (found here). We added a pocket to each of the dresses - if the girls receiving the dolls are anything like Grace they'll need a special place to keep their "treasures". Grace gave them each a big hug before they began their journey to the Casa Bernabe Orphanage in Nicaragua. This project made our hearts so happy!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Strawberry Salad

Even though the official first day of summer is weeks away it certainly feels like summer around here! With summer comes lots of salad making - I find salads a breeze to prepare and rather refreshing to eat on a hot day. Here's a favorite of ours:

Strawberry Salad (adapted from a Publix Apron Meal)

Lettuce of your choosing (I use romaine or a spring mix)
Freshly sliced strawberries
Crumbled blue cheese
Poppy seed dressing (I prefer "Naturally Fresh" brand)

Toss the ingredients together in a large bowl. Place the salad on plates and serve with a freshly baked piece of crusty bread - yum!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Stormy Reading

A thunderstorm rolled in this afternoon. The dogs are always a nervous wreck during a storm. Grace thought reading them a few stories would help calm their nervous energy. It seemed to work. Sophie sat content at Grace's side while Molly "listened" from a safe distance on the floor to stories such as, "The Runaway Bunny" and "The Rainbow Fish" - all without shaking or panting!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Summer Routines

This week officially starts our summer break. Grace will continue to attend school two days a week and a gymnastics class but other than that our schedule is open - yea for that! So that leaves plenty of time to do things we enjoy - attending story time at the library, crafting, reading, playing games, swimming and kitchen fun.

Today we got a head start on the summer crafting by finishing the dolls for the Craft Hope project. While stuffing the dolls with "snow" Grace sang, "We'll stuff, stuff and stuff until we had enough". Once she had enough of stuffing she decided to draw four little pictures (a rainbow fish, penguin, chicken and a shark with fishes) - one to place in each doll's "pocket". She's so creative!