Monday, July 30, 2012

Catch up

"Rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated."
(attributed to Mark Twain, though not really.)

We are, in fact, alive and well. A little too well and with one additional life on the way, actually. 

Boy #2. Due October 17th. So far, things have gone relatively smoothly, though he is an incredibly active little guy. I'm no longer holding out hope for that calm, easy-going second child I thought I had coming to me.

It's not grand (and looks particularly small quaint in exterior photos), but it's perfectly roomy for us and we absolutely adore it. It's a 1940's Cape Cod that was extensively renovated and added on to by a builder last year. They kept some of its vintage charm but added all new amenities.A perfect combination for us.

 I've come to really like the efficiency of galley kitchens (we had a tiny galley kitchen in our old house) and this one features a gratuitous amount of counter space:

And my cookbook collection has a lovely new home in our breakfast room:

Don't worry - that's not all of them. The rest are hidden inside the bureau.

We're still getting settled and I have lots of ideas for pretty much every room. The house was entirely neutral when we moved in, so now it's just neutral with our crappy old furniture on top. You don't need to see pictures of that.

So, the baby and the house have kept us fairly busy over the past few months. Not too busy for the beach, of course. There's always time for the beach. Although we've had to accommodate our road trips for a pregnant lady and a toddler-sized bladder. We are now entirely too familiar with every Royal Farms along Route 50, plus a few choice McDonalds.

Happy summer!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Can't help myself

I should probably start with a more detailed post about where the hell I've been (we moved) or what the hell I've been doing (gestating baby #2), but in the mean time here is a gigantic roan draft cross near the Capitol. Because I have my priorities.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Friday bliss: smoked Gouda with bacon

The brie isn't bad either but whomever thought up bacon flavored cheese deserves a Nobel prize.

P.S. Hi there! Long time no see.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

P52: Macro

Well, kind of. Sort of. Not really, actually. I don't have a true macro lens (yet . . .), so I just use the long end of my Tamron. I had hoped to catch some of the blooms popping up on the Mall (Silly flowers! It's February!), but ran out of time and daylight, so I scrounged around my backyard for something, anything.

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Meh. This was actually my favorite shot from outside, not macro by any means, but much cuter.

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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

White Bean and Artichoke Dip

Yeah, so joining Weight Watchers right before the Super Bowl is a bad, bad idea. Not that I actually enjoy football, by any means, but I do enjoy wings. And pizza. And beer. Anyway, I did manage to whip this up as a relatively healthy option. It would have been great with the addition of fresh basil or sun-dried tomatoes for some extra flavor and color. White beans are really just blank canvas for a super simple and light dip.

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White Bean and Artichoke Dip

  • 1 can white beans, like canelini
  • 1 cup marinated (not frozen) artichoke hearts, drained but reserving 1 tbs of liquid
  • salt and pepper to tast

  1. Whip it all up in a food processor. Presto, you're done.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Thursday, February 2, 2012

P52: Lust

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At least, the type of thing that I will be lusting after for awhile, unless I want to ask "How many points is that?". I just joined the big WW. I don't really want to talk about it because reading about other people's weight and diets is so intensely boring (and even less interesting when they quickly fall off the wagon, which I am apt to do) but I feel like I would be hiding something if I didn't at least mention it.

I hate depriving myself. I hate counting what I eat and measuring it and writing it down. However, I also hate that may pants don't fit. I want my cake and I want to eat it too. And not some crappy fake cake made with Cool Whip and Diet Coke. Or angel food cake because that tastes like styrofoam and don't try to tell me that fresh fruit is just as good as chocolate. I want real cake, three layers, with frosting DAMMIT. And ice cream on the side, while I'm at it. But I spent the last year not worrying about what I ate and it gained me 20 damn pounds. So here we go. There is a good chance that this is as short-lived as last year's 30 Day Shred episode. We'll see. Feel free to post WW sucess stories or tell me I'm not a foodie sell-out.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Weekend Wrap-Up: Family Gluttony Edition

Because the family that drinks wine and eats oysters together stays together. Or something like that.

We started the weekend with Chris's parents, taking them to the Comus Inn and Sugarloaf Mountain Winery. Comus Inn was okay. It has a fantastic view of Sugarloaf Mountain but it sounds like their Sunday brunch menu is where the real action is. And we always love an afternoon at the Winery. This time of year they offer a really tasty mulled wine.

The Peanut isn't so much interested in Butternut Squash and Ginger soup or Cabernet Franc as he is quality time with doting grandparents:

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And orange lollipops:

But we enjoyed the scenery:

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On Sunday we enjoyed a mountain of a very different kind. A mountain of food.

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My dad and Tessa had us over for a full-blown oyster feast, featuring local Chesapeake Bay oysters and Tessa's signature drink for the day -- Orange Crush:

No lollipops here. Just oysters.

Including the Peanut's very first raw oyster. Promptly followed by his second and third. I kid you not.

If I accomplish nothing else in my life, I raised a toddler that will eat a raw oyster. There are probably a million reasons why small children should not ingest raw seafood. Please don't tell me. For now let's bask in my glory.

Anyway, that was our weekend. So much fun with family, wine and food that I literally popped a filling out of my tooth when flossing last night. Wild times!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday bliss: Tomato Soup with Goat Cheese

The perfect lunch on a gloomy day. Just Trader Joe's Creamy Tomato Soup doctored up with herbes de provence and chevre. So rich I almost didn't miss the grilled cheese. Almost.

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

P52: Stranded

Not the most creative interpretation. Since we are in the midst of potty training a certain little Peanut (don't worry - that's the last you'll hear about it), Chris had an awesome idea that involved showing two tiny legs swinging from a great big potty. But I'm sorry, Internet. I just can't release a potty photo out in to the wild like that. And I know that a good portion of folks are breathing a huge sigh of relief, including my future teenager.

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And a bonus shot from the same "shoot". He may be nekkid but I think this will require a little less therapy to get over.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Project 52: Language

I've been toying with the idea of doing a Project 52, taking a photo related to different theme each week. There are a few out there that you can follow - Paint the Moon has one, My 3 Boybarians has one. Those are fine but I realized that my  photography group essentially has the same concept going on, in the form of a "Picture of the Week" contest. So, I'm going to shoot for each of those POTW themes as my own version of a Project 52. I doubt I'll enter the contest each week but I do plan to photograph something in those categories and blog them. Lucky you!

This week's theme was language.  Neither of these images is stellar, I know. But what the hell? If I only posted stuff that was good, you wouldn't have anything to make fun of behind my back.

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Friday, January 6, 2012

Friday bliss: Awesome weather

It's been awhile since I did one of these and I've started to miss it. It's kind of nice to come up with at least one simple thing a week I can look forward to and relish. In this case, Mother Nature did all the work. That's today's temperature at about 5 pm. On Tuesday it was 17.

I just recently decided not to join my mom on her annual Florida sojourn and was starting to wonder if I would survive. Perhaps I might.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Barbecue and Bacon Meatloaf

This picture sucks because it was only at the very last minute that I decided my meatloaf masterpiece required photographic documentation.  And my speedlight batteries were dead. However, it was taken at ISO 5000 (! What what, 7D?!), so yay for awesome low light shooting capabilities. Also, yay for awesome meatloaf with bacon, ugly and unphotogenic as it may be.

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Barbecue and Bacon Meatloaf 

Adapted from "Not-So-Basic Meatloaf", based on what I had on hand.  I skipped the bay leaves and extra garlic altogether and I don't think they were missed at all.

  •  5 strips of bacon, diced
  • 1/2 of a medium onion, finely diced
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 2 cups dry white bread (I used a baquette), diced
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 pound ground turkey (I used dark meat - it's just what they had at MOM's)
  • 1 pound lean beef
  • 1/4 cup barbecue sauce, plus 1 tbsp for the top
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 cup parsley, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 
  2. Cook bacon until just crisp in frying pan. Remove to paper towel-lined plate. 
  3. Pour out almost all bacon grease and saute onion, carrot and garlic until onions are translucent and carrots are soft. Set aside to cool.
  4. Meanwhile, put bread in large bowl and cover with milk. Squish together to break up bread and get the milk mostly absorbed. 
  5. Add vegetables, bacon and the rest of the ingredients (except the extra tablespoon of barbecue sauce).  Mix together. 
  6. Form a loaf-ish shape on a foil-lined baking sheet, about 8"x5". Spread remaining barbecue sauce over top. Bake for about an hour, until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Allow to cool a few minutes before serving.