Tuesday, July 29, 2014

This and that

The days keep slipping by with nary a blog post in sight! Sorry! Three hour camp is killing me, which I assume can only get more challenging when they downgrade to NO camp for the month of August. 

We recently celebrated my dad's 81st birthday. He wanted the kids to be involved, so we all went out to dinner and everyone wrote him a poem. It was really sweet to hear everyone's kind and funny words about this funny father of mine. Then everyone came back to our house to participate in the playing of Wii sports and Just Dance. Not the typical 81 year old party activity, but then again, I don't have a typical 81 year old for a father. 

We spent a wonderful day on the beach in the water (it happened to be the same day all of those people were struck by lightening in Venice Beach in that tragedy.) We were in Malibu and you'd never even know there was a storm brewing mere miles away. 

In other news, I completely neglected my kombucha scoby when I went away to farm camp (I need to upload those photos to share!). Luckily, my friend Karen, the scoby whisperer, came over and encouraged me to continue fermenting and look what I unveiled last week! My scoby went from this ugly brown color (see gross scoby lying in water) to this vibrant, translucent scoby in forefront of photo. I've been loving my ginger kombucha, ramping up for my AIP diet in September (more on that soon)

In the meantime, it's been nothing but good eats over here. Monday is pasta night and while the kids get some sort of quinoa pasta the grown ups get zucchini pasta. Below, it's served with bacon and figs and parsley, inspired by this recipe.

This is my attempt at a skillet cookie (super big cookie baked in a pan). The kids LOVED it. I used this recipe, but if I made it again, I'd reduce the sugar by at least 1/4 of a cup. 

I finally finished cutting my pattern pieces for my Anise Collete jacket. It was an exhausting process. Today, I'll be ironing and then I'll finally start sewing the darn thing. Maybe I should change the name of my blog to the Slow Seamstress. That's how I'm feeling these days. 

Friday, July 25, 2014

garden peppers

These pretty peppers popped up in our garden. About half are killer spicy - the others, not so much. 

While there is nothing gargantuan about this summer produce as there was two years ago when we grew the monster zucchini, we have a pretty good crop of sweat peas, strawberries, peppers, cucumbers, fennel and our first tennis-ball-sized watermelon!!!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

smoothie pictograph

I love this smoothie pictograph from the Blender Girl!

It should in what order you should put things in the blender to make smoothies as well as different ways to jazz up your smoothies. 

We make a lot of smoothies over here as it's the one way I can guarantee that Mr. P., my vegetarian-who-doesn't-like-vegetables will get enough protein (powder) and nutrients (lots of hidden kale and spinach)

I'm printing this one out and sticking it on the fridge!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

want to go to a sewing party?

There's a sewing party brewing set to take place on November 8th. Want to go?

Basically, it's an online sewing conference filled with classes, seminars and general crafty camaraderie. 

Read more about specific classes being taught here.

Or enter to win a free ticket here at Delia Creates!

Friday, July 18, 2014

pleather tote

You thought I was going to disappear for another month, didn't you? I don't blame you. I'm a fickle summer fool over here. 

The kids are at camp for three hours a day, which, once transportation is factored in, bequeaths me with about two hours to workout, shower, tidy up the house, prepare an afternoon activity, catch up on email and edit my forthcoming young adult novel (final edits are due August 15th). 

So, you can see how blogging can get bumped a little bit down the list of things that need to be done. 

Anyhow, this tote was the first project I wanted to complete over the summer. I got the free pattern online here from See Kate Sew. I found the pleather at L.A.'s fashion district for about a dollar for an entire yard (totally worth the trip!) and the fabric (both outer and lining) I got my local sewing store, Sew Modern. The other notions were purchased at F & S. 

This was an easy afternoon project. When I completed it, I felt as though it was too long. It was perfect for a laptop bag, but seemed a bit excessive for an everyday tote. So, instead of being my usual lazy self, I went back in and broadened the bottom seam, making the bag wider and cutting down on the length. If I had it in me (which I don't) I'd go back in one more time and shift it so that the pleather takes up about 1/3 of the bag's material and the other, green material takes up 2/3. If you follow the pattern exactly, you too will have a long, laptop-like bag, so my advice before sewing would be to shorten the length of the leather  / pleather. 

Til next time, happy sewing!!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

homemade polenta

Did I really just take over a month off from blogging?? Sorry about my abrupt disappearance, although, I'm guessing that you'll notice it happened just around the times my kiddos got out of school, which means, I was just busy with them!! Turns out the same number of you visit each day whether I post or not, ha!

In a nutshell, I spent two weeks on a farm in Northern California (more to come) and then home where I've been socializing, reading, getting our house organized, entertaining the kids and driving them to a whole lot of playdates.

There are many amazing things about the farm and I'll dive into all that over the coming week, but one of the great treats was having three meals a day prepared for me! It felt so luxurious! But of course, as soon as I came home, the first thing I did was dive back into the kitchen.

One recipe I've been wanting to try for a while now is homemade polenta. Who knew that all it takes is some home ground popcorn kernels?? The polenta, which I made from scratch, then grilled, came out grittier than the store bought kind, but that's because it has been way less processed, and I actually liked the texture better. 

The recipe I used can be found here

I served it over a bed of kale, roasted zucchini and avocado.