Unloading a bit from my camera roll. Not as much blogging going on this past month, because my normal day is super full of the basics: making food for my family, washing clothes, teaching manners and just about everything else, and wiping little bottoms. But each week I find a pocket of time that wasn't there before to take a shower, read a bit, write a bit, bake, or something else that recharges me. And good news! Very, very soon the shop will be full of 50 Promises again!! Here's what we've been up to...
1 | Watching March cycle through. Melt, more snow... melt, more snow. We've been enjoying some blue skies, cold sun, and cookies & cream fields.
2 | Watching Casper grow! He weighed 13 pounds at 2 months, which is quite a bit bigger than his sister was. He's eleven weeks old now and wearing 6 month clothes.. speaking of which, H&M just delivered a bunch of goods to our house for a certain little boy!
3 | Sunday dinner at Grandma and Grandpa's house at Camp Shetek.
4 | Enjoying daffodils and the bouncer lately. Both Grant and my mother-in-law brought me a bouquet of daffodils in the same week! It was crazy exciting.
5 | Long winters call for casseroles. I've been loving this one at least once a week. And sometimes I throw in carrots, mushrooms, or asparagus.
6 | Casper lights up when we smile at him and he's proficient in baby-speak now. He loves to talk and squeal back and forth with me. It's so fun and once we get started, I don't get anything else done for awhile!
7 | More daffodils :) And do you see that water color that says for baby Casper? I remember the morning Hadley painted that and I wrote "For Baby ___" because we had no idea who was inside me! Crazy.
8 | Hadley plays so great by herself these days. She loves to pretend cook- you will often find her making soup, pancakes, cutting apples, or carrying around a honey pot. She is also into her tiny farm animals, Minnie Mouse & Daisy, Easter eggs, and doing puzzles.
9 | Eating our breakfast at the toy box while baby brother naps. We are so thankful for farm eggs! And Hadley has discovered that she loves hot oatmeal for breakfast, too.
10 | Grant is deep into his schooling for acquiring his principal's license and now has also started his year-long internship. So, he's squeezing in a lot of extra hours of paper-writing and school business. Thank you for working so hard, Grant! The time he gets to spend just hanging out at home with us is so precious.
11 | A snow dump last Thursday, when our backyard looked like a real-life snow globe. Happily, we had rented Frozen the night before and were perfectly content to be inside and sing/dance along. Hadley is obsessed with a couple of the songs- and she's pretty sure she's singing all the words, too :)
12 | A few weeks ago Hadley and I started a new routine of cleaning up right after lunch and bringing a stack of books to the couch. We read together until her nap time and we both love it. I'm so excited that she's getting old enough to appreciate stories and waiting to turn pages!
Oh, and for fun, here's a few favorite posts from last March...
Juicy Orange Vanilla Cake (gluten and dairy free)
Answering a reader question: How do you get things done everyday with a baby?
Erin's Thai Red Curry (we still eat this super often)
Heidi's Incredibly Yummy Pecan Tassies
And lastly, I leave you with such an easy lunch idea. The name is way fancier than it deserves. But, why not make it sound as wonderful as it tastes? :) I didn't use arborio rice, but I guess technically, "risotto" just means rice cooked in broth to a creamy consistency, so I was pretty excited when I realized, wait, what I just made, that's risotto?! Yummy!
Sausage & Kale Risotto
(more of an idea, than a recipe with actual measuring, you guys don't mind do you?)
1/2 an onion, chopped
several stems of kale, cut away from the ribs and chiffonade
1 cup chopped grass-fed beef sausage or pastured pork sausage (I used grass-fed beef hotdogs)
1 cup uncooked jasmine or basmati rice
3 cups (roughly) of chicken broth
sea salt to taste
optional: 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
coconut oil or ghee, to taste
To a soup pot add the chopped onion and sausage, kale, and rice. Pour in broth until everything is just covered by liquid, stir, and salt it well. Add mustard, if using. (I love the combo of mustard with the beef sausage.) Bring to a boil, then cover and turn down to low. Let simmer until kale is soft, broth is absorbed, and rice is starting to get a bit creamy, about 17-20 minutes. Feel free to simmer longer, the more the flavors mingle the yummier it gets. If there's too much liquid, take the lid off and turn the heat up a bit and cook for a couple minutes more. Also, this dish just gets better as leftovers. Serve warm, with a big dab of coconut oil (or grass-fed butter, if you do dairy) on top.