The Why

September 17, 2012 § 5 Comments

It’s the time of year I like best.  The time when heat-worn Summer days finally  fade into cool breezes.  A time when I crave cozy sweaters and hot cider, and want to listen to the folksy music of Beth Amsel or Peter Bradley Adams.  I contemplate baking bread and grow anxious for Autumn flavors like pumpkin and nutmeg.  It’s also a time when many of the blogs I visit highlight homeschool plans for the upcoming year; mothers eagerly anticipating traditions and memories they’ll make with their children.  I view pictures of summer day trips and lazy afternoons spent savoring childhood and the end of summer.  And it becomes a time of year for me to second guess, to face The Why.

Why did I chose to go back to work rather than spend my days with Liam?

The reasons from a year ago reside in the back of my mind.  I pull them out, turn them over in my head, consider all their angles.  I try to categorize them: selfish, unselfish. I want to tally them, to sum up my decision in one word that I can either hate or exault myself for.

I interrogate the reasons.  Ask them to identify their allegence.  But they refuse to be labeled.  They refuse to quiet The Why.

So I coexhist with The Why.  Sometime it’s accusing, pointing at me, yelling “WHY!!!”  Other times it calms, boosts confidence, gently reminds saying, “this is why, this is best”.

I Finally Bought a Chicken!

September 14, 2012 § 2 Comments

No, I don’t have live poultry running around my postage stamp of townhouse yard.  Although it might be fun to see what sort of convulsions that would send the homeowner’s association into.  I finally bought a whole {dead} chicken for cooking purposes without it being a special occasion!  Yes, I realize that normal people do this regularly.  So why is it post worthy?  It’s a big step for someone who is culinary challenged and was, until a few short years ago, a vegetarian.

When I started cooking with meat my recipe criteria was quick and easy.  The majority of chicken recipes I came across called for a package of boneless, skinless breasts. Quick-check, easy-check. I prefer white meat and don’t really care for the taste of dark, so i got into the habit of buying only chicken breasts.

I could have gone on very happy this way except for a pesky nag in the back of my head calling me wasteful for only wanting to consume certain parts of the bird.  Add to that all of the disturbing information about chickens that are given hormones to the point of mutating into nothing but huge breasts, or something along those lines, and my conscience started to bother me.  How could I be unhappy about large breasted, hormone-loaded chickens if I was part of the white-meat only consumers creating the demand.

So I finally bought a whole {organic} chicken for a regular dinner.  My husband wrapped it in prosciutto and roasted it on the big green egg.  And I ate dark meat as well as white meat.  And we made chicken salad with the leftovers.  And chicken stock with the carcass.  And the only thing the nag in my head could say was “Yum!”.

A Little Shrug

September 8, 2012 § 3 Comments

I found this dress at Old Navy back in July.

It’s very comfortable and I’ve worn it several times, but not as much as I would have liked to.  The fully exposed shoulders don’t make for appropriate office attaire.  So when I came accross this pattern , I knew I needed one to go with the dress.

I  finished it Wednesday and sported it at work last week.  Maybe I can get a couple wears in before the weather turns cool!

Sunflower + Egg = Green

September 4, 2012 § 1 Comment

A while back, my husband sent me the link for this cookie recipe with the word “Yum!”.   I finally got around to trying them over the weekend.   If you’ve got a specific craving for warm, gewy, chocolate chip cookies, this probably won’t fill it.  But if you’re regularly looking for a treat in the middle of the afternoon with just the right amount of sweetness, then give these a try.  They’re grain-free so while I feel like I’m eating carbs, I’m actually not.

After Liam and I did our taste test, I thought how great they’d be to send with him to daycare as an afternoon snack or part of his lunch.  But alas, his daycare is a nut-free zone.  Undaunted, I whipped up another batch, substituing sunflower butter for the almond butter and sunflower seeds for the walnuts.   Sunflower lent an earthier, slightly less sweet taste than almond, but overall still good. 

Except…they turned green! 

The color of cooked spinach to put it nicely; reminiscent of a cow pie to put it honestly. 

Liam ate it, said he liked it, and seemed not to notice the odd color. 

So if you need, or want, to be grain-free, try a batch of these with almond butter.  If you need to be nut-free as well, or if your kids would find green food neat, then give them a try with sunflower butter!

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