Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A little fun

I just had to share this. As much as I love Martha, I did find it absolutely hilarious.

Monday, October 11, 2010


It was a beautiful weekend here - very hot and sunny days, but it is getting dark very early now and it is chilly at night. I'm a little sad because I'm one of the only people who likes spring/late winter better than fall. It's not that there is anything wrong with fall, but I love days that get longer and the promise of summer, not the gathering gloom of winter. Enough gloom though, because there are a few things that I am loving right now.

Hula Girl Sugar is delicious on my morning coffee. I love the strong vanilla flavor! It may have been a touristy gimmick that drew my eye toward it in the gift shop, but I'm a convert. No matter how surly my company is in the morning, I can close my eyes as I drink this and pretend I am back on Maui. My surly company loves a little of this sugar sprinkled over greek yogurt with frozen blueberries :)
My morning routine is pretty minimal these days - wash my face, lots of sunscreen, a little concealer and blush as needed, and then a little something pretty :) This is the perfect sheer candy apple color. I could use a few other instant pretty things - any recommendations?

Mcintosh apples are my favorites. Their crispy sweet tart flavor is simply the best in my book for cooking and eating. I will dice one up and toss with cinnamon and sugar, then bake in the oven for 15 minutes at about 350. This beautiful image is courtesy of New York Apple Association© New York Apple Association
I like to try one new recipe every week. It is fun for me to expand the repertoire, and I think it makes life more interesting for the other folks in our house when we have different things to eat. So, in the spirit of fall, I'm going to try this recipe, courtesy of Smitten Kitchen. Sounds delicious!
What are you looking forward to this week?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

A Haul from Old Navy

There may have been a time when I turned up my nose at Old Navy. I was just discussing this with a friend this past weekend. ON has totally stepped up their game in the last few years. It used to be sort of boxy tees and tanks, nothing really terrible, but not stuff that I was ever excited about buying. I limited my visits to about once a year for workout tanks.

Now, I'm leading a lifestyle were I need clothing that is cute, but that also doesn't cost an arm and a leg, in case something happens to it. ("Something" being baby food, cat vomit, and other unpleasant sundries from the domestic life). Specifically, while I am scrambling after the naughty munchkin at the park or out and about, I don't want to worry about snagging a nice sweater or getting muck on a very delicate shirt. But, I also want to look cute and presentable. Just because I hang out with a toddler does not mean that I want to wear mom jeans and frump it up.

For chilly mornings at the park, I'm hoping this sweater works out! For leggings and boots and a comfy day of running errands, this tunic looks promising.

BTW, how awesome was Glee last night? After I got Miss K distracted with some toys, I watched it again today.

Also, per my to do list post yesterday, I wanted to link to this awesome holiday to do list template. Isn't that neat?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail - Meal Planning for Type B People

I used to think that I was a Type A. Then I was a big firm lawyer for a few years. I quickly realized that I am just a relatively uptight and anxious Type B who likes to make lists. That said, I do like having a weekly agenda of meals. It makes me feel like I know what we are going to eat when, and it also forces me to use up the ingredients that I buy. Nothing annoys me more than wasting food.

I'm now starting to get into a rhythm for planning. Friday afternoon during K's nap is when I sit down with my recipe binder of all the recipes I've clipped from magazines, my laptop with Epicurious and my little meal planning notepad. I also have a cup of tea and cookies. I've decided that meal planning is the way that I'm going to try those recipes that I've always hung onto, but never made. When I sit down to go through the binder, I can scan exactly how long something will take, and can note whether I need to purchase anything different at the store.

I use the weekends to try stuff that is more time consuming, or that really requires my undivided attention. K and her dad have a lot of football to watch together, so they are pretty busy these days :). K and I go to the grocery store about once per week for a big stock up, and then we will walk to the farmers' market or to the grocery store a few other times to pick up the little incidentals and fresh produce as needed. So far, it's working! I am not really wasting food anymore, and I feel like we are benefiting from working some new recipes into the old standbys. How do you menu plan? Also, what is your pantry staple supper for the night when everything goes wrong, but you feel too cheap to spring for takeout?

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

To Do: Organization

I am on mission plough through my to do list and get organized. This involves lots of time thinking about routines and rearranging things. I've been poking around and found some helpful stuff to share with you all.

1. A great to do list template that makes printing your list and keeping it tidy a breeze located here

2. This blog provides lots of great ideas for household organizing. I love how she suggests some habits to develop to keep clutter in line. If only I could adopt them!

3. This blog makes getting organized seem so chic. I love their vision, and I also love that they provide an 8 week plan for better organization. The visuals remind me of my beloved and no longer in print Domino and Blueprint!

4. I heart this store and their adorable notepads. I've been sticking with meal planning much more consistently since I picked up a little notepad that lists my meals for the week and the ingredients I need. I feel like I could be even more organized with more adorable notebooks.

In non-organized fashion...for those that miss Gourmet Magazine, what do you think of the new Gourmet?

Friday, October 1, 2010

Where I've been

I was the only person in California who had never been to Hawaii. I was there for five days last week and am now plotting and scheming for my return. It was paradise, from the beautiful water to the delicious food, to the adults only "serenity pool." We stayed on Maui, and while it was probably not the most authentically Hawaiian experience, we left relaxed, refreshed and thoroughly in love. Everyone was so friendly, and unlike LA, the other drivers were unfailingly courteous.

This was the view from my poolside cabana where I napped and ploughed through the Twilight Saga. I'm all done!

Our hotel did a beautiful sunset ceremony every evening, and I was able to get a great picture of the performer. Sunset was amazing! They also had beautiful Hawaiian music and hula in the lobby bar. Seriously, I definitely recommend staying here here

So, I hope you all have a beautiful Monday morning. I'm back to the daily routine and it's good to be back. Because, as much as I needed a little break from daily life toddler wrangling, I missed her. Oh, I should have said that earlier...it was a child free holiday - second honeymoon I guess :)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A typical day

Mrs. Preppy did a great post about this, so I thought I'd do one too. I'm always curious as to how other people spend their days, so please feel free to do one!

6:00 to 7:00 Generally around 6:20, Miss K starts rattling the bars of her crib and saying "Up." That means it's go time. I retrieve her, change her, and we go outside to get the paper. For some reason, she loves heading outside for the paper first thing. (My husband travels a ton for work, and he was out of town today. When he is in town, we bring her back into bed with us when she wakes up and we all watch Good Morning America and the local morning news together. When it's just me, I just head upstairs and get my coffee started).

7:00 ish - Breakfast. Oatmeal, milk and applesauce in the highchair. Throw in a banana or little bits of prune (I know - she has funny taste). I clean her up and have her play in the dining room and kitchen while I eat breakfast and read the paper. I also always need a very strong cup of coffee, because I really like to wake up at 7:00 - not 6:20. Today, I woke up at 6:07. That is a little early.

8:00 - 9:00 K goes and hangs out in her crib to watch a little Curious George or other PBS kids show, while I run around like a madwoman cleaning up the kitchen, dealing with feeding the cats, and getting myself sort of presentable for our morning activity. By presentable, I mean I put in my contacts, wash my face, brush my teeth, and put on sunscreen or tinted moisturizer depending on the activity. I firmly believe that if you put on workout clothing, you will work out, so my uniform is lululemon pants or shorts, a tank and a hoody. If we aren't going out for exercise in the morning, I will wear jeans and a top or a dress. I can squeeze the quickest of quick showers in if I have to, but my hair is not blown out. Apologies, but she won't stay in the crib for longer than 30 minutes!

9:00 to 12:00 - I love to walk for exercise, so most days we head out for about an hour or so walking. Today, we went for our walk, then came home and cleaned up to head over to the park to play for a while. Since there is no more morning nap, I'm pretty free in the mornings to go out and do some fun stuff or some errands. (There is a morning snack in here at some point - generally when we are out in the stroller for our walk - Miss K does appreciate some tasty baked goods with a sippy cup of milk).

12:00 - 1:00 This is when lunch is served. For K - not me! She is starting to get interested in utensils other than her hands, so I always provide them. So far, not a whole lot of success. She enjoys a grilled cheese sandwich, or some black beans or peanut butter crackers for lunch. More milk too! She plays while I clean up the kitchen. Or, she plays while I scarf some lunch and ignore how messy the kitchen is!

1:00 -2:00 At some point in here, Miss K goes down for her nap. I zip her into her little sleep sack and pop her into the crib. I sit in her room until she falls asleep. I know I need to stop, but I haven't figured out how to break the habit yet. Once she is down for her nap, I take my shower, and work on whatever needs to be done - returning phone calls, laundry, tidying up, bill paying, letters, etc. Today, for example, I sat around and read Twilight Eclipse in my unmade bed, surrounded by unfolded clean laundry. It felt like playing hooky and I loved it :)

3:00 - 4:00 Sometime in here, Miss K wakes up. Time for another small snack and milk. She has started not to eat quite as much as she used to, so this doesn't take long.

3:00 to 6:00 Time to head out again for something - either another walk or errands. Today, we went to the grocery store. She loves riding around in the cart, and is in a really good mood after her nap. This is the one good thing about being down to one nap. It means that I have time in the late afternoon to do one more errand or trip outside. When we were on two naps, she was sleeping from around 3:00 to 5:00, so there wasn't a lot of time to get stuff done after that second nap. We also love going for another walk to the park to allow her to run around.

6:00 Back home and time for dinner. If my husband is not travelling, I've spent part of nap time doing dinner prep - setting the table and preparing the meal. If he isn't, I eat a salad and poached eggs, like tonight, or something else really easy. Sometimes, it's really boring, like a bowl of cereal. Miss K eats dinner - tonight it was pasta with pesto...sadly, she did not like my homemade pesto and bowtie pasta. Another cup of milk.

6:30-7:45 More playtime. If we are on our own, like today, more PBS kids because I'm tired. Although, honestly, she seem to ignore the show and just play.

7:45 - 8:00 Time for a quick bath and bedtime. Miss K is pretty tired at the end of her day, so we do not have a very complex routine. I brush her teeth, zip her in a sleep sack, and let her turn off the light in her room. I miss her, but I know I'll see her again, bright and early.

8:00 - 10:00 Ok. She is safely asleep, so I can clean up the kitchen, run the dishwasher and then sweep around the living room picking up toys. Or, I can sit in the living room looking at all the toys strewn about and decide I won't deal with them until tomorrow. It all depends on the day :). Some days, I use this time to work on recipes or do meal prep. Other days, we sit and watch TV. I watched an episode of "Four Weddings" as I did this post. Then, it's downstairs to bed.

The days are long, but the years seem short. Especially now that she gives hugs and kisses.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Late to the party

I think I'm the only literate person in America who hasn't read the Twilight Saga. In late July, K and I both had hand foot and mouth - a particularly loathsome virus that gives you a fever and a bad sore throat. While in the throes of infection, and housebound, we watched Twilight. And I loved it!

The English nerd in me saw lots of similarities to my beloved Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights. I felt a little silly checking out all the titles at the library, but then the librarian said it's the most popular series of books and that everyone has already read them.

Alright then. I'm on a mission to get caught up with the rest of America. The only problem is that I'm a terrible frady cat with a way too vivid imagination. Am I ever going to sleep again? I guess it's too late - I've read the first few chapters and I'm hooked!

What are you reading?

Monday, September 13, 2010

This post brought to you courtesy of Trace Atkins

I don't actually like all that much country music, but I heard the lyrics to "You're Gonna Miss This" and it just made me stop and think. Here are a few pictures of my munchkin over the last 16 months, and I cannot believe how much she has grown. Fall always gets me in sort of a ruminative state, and I've been thinking a lot about how quickly the time goes by. With a baby, that process speeds up even farther; I feel like it's been at least five years since I acted like me pre-baby.

So, I think I'm going to use this fall to try to take in more of the little moments and to focus less energy on where we are going. Lord knows, we are headed into the future quickly enough, so now is the time to sit back and enjoy the present.
For me, that means doing more fun things to mark the seasons - whether it's baking special Halloween cookies or wrestling someone into a Halloween costume, and also spending more time on the floor playing and less time folding laundry and playing on the internet.

How do you make the most of the here and now?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Taming the Chaos

When K first came home from the hospital, the only evidence of her presence outside of the nursery was a little stack of receiving blankets next to the couch, and a little canvas bin with diapers and such in our windowseat. Times have changed. Not only can she climb on almost all the living room furniture, it looks like her toys are reproducing each night. Our living room is blessed with high ceilings and abundant light, but cursed with absolutely no built in storage or closet to contain her mess.
Courtesy of the Container Store and Ballard Designs, there is a little more living in the living room, now that it looks a little nicer.
I've instituted a five bin rotation of toys. Each day, K gets an new bin filled with a variety of toys and books. It makes picking up after her so much easier, and she doesn't seem to notice that she's only playing with a fifth of her toys.
Now that she can touch everything, I've had to move books and remotes to a safe space. That's where the Ballard Designs shelves come in handy. I will post a picture, but they hang out right over one couch, and provide a safe space for the books I want to read - and another place to display photos of her. I'm ordering two more to be installed further down the wall. I shopped around for a while at Pottery Barn, Crate and Barrel and West Elm before going with Ballard. I loved that they don't charge tax if shipping to California, and thought they were the best value around.
How do you stay organized? Any other toy/clutter containment ideas? Her bedroom and bookshelves are a whole different story :)

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Coffee Talk

I don't actually like coffee cake in the morning. It's too rich and sweet. I feel the same way about doughnuts. I love both as desserts or as an afternoon snack, but they are just too rich for breakfast.

That said, I bought raspberries at the store last week and didn't want to toss them. It's also about 60 and cloudy here, so I didn't really feel like eating them plain. A friend had emailed it to me months ago, and it sat in my recipe file. I stared at it, thought about it, but somehow always ended up making something else. Not anymore. Courtesy of a package of raspberries that I did not want to go to waste, I present to you a very delicious cake:

It is from confessions of a tart - a beautiful blog that I just discovered and am very much enjoying! http://http://confessionsoftart.blogspot.com/2009/03/raspberry-madness-coffee-cake.html

I made a couple changes to the recipe - I added nutmeg to the streusel topping - because I like it. I also added all the raspberries that I had - I think it was closer to 3 cups. Because I added a lot more fruit, the dough became a lot wetter and I had to extend the baking time by about 15 minutes. Because of all the extra fruit, I ended up with beautiful pink cake studded with tons of raspberries and a very crisp streusel on top. Just how I like it. The problem is that it's sitting in my kitchen calling to me as I sit and type this. I think this would be delicious with blackberries or another tart fruit?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Fall Wishlist

We really did not have much of a summer in Los Angeles this year. So, it could be that September and October are hellishly hot, and I keep wearing summer clothing for the next few weeks. However, the fog rolled in last night, and it hasn't lifted. Baby K and I baked some raspberry coffee cake and enjoyed pizza for dinner. Fall is on the way.

Now that I have a toddler, I'm looking for comfy clothing that allows me to chase her around outside and inside, but that isn't just lululemon pants and hoodies. Don't get me wrong, if you run into me out and about doing errands, that is what I'm wearing most of the time, but I want a look for fall that is a little more together.

I have finally embraced the leggings and tunic trend, so here are some of my favorites:

Jcrew tunic - for a warm day at the park and farmer's market

A slightly more stylish tee for kicking back with jeans and boots during the day, and maybe cute enough for dinner with friends later.

I am obsessed with cable knit sweaters. I tried one on at Free People that had such potential, but it was the least flattering thing ever on. This one from Bloomingdales looks like it would be sleek and slimming, but still comfy and easy to move around in.

I'll have to do a separate post for Miss K. It's a little hard for me to find the traditional, smocked dresses that I like for her out here, but I think I've found some good contenders for fall.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

The times, they are a changin'


I have been way too lazy about updating lately. It's not that there is much exciting to report around here - it's just that when you get out of the habit, it is hard to get back in the groove. But, I miss having an activity that is just for me. So much stuff lately is for baby K, the family, the cats, friends - you know. I was flipping through the blog and realized how fun and inexpensive all of my little cooking projects were, and how very happy they made me.

It's cool here today. The fog has not burned off, and it definitely feels like fall is around the corner. It's a good time to savor the last strawberries of the season and to start gearing up for apples and pears. I generally am not a huge berry person. I'm happy to eat them, but I don't often get thrilled about them the way I do about chocolate or peaches and plums. This strawberry shortcake recipe should change that. It's the best. It is weird and a little scary the first time you make it - but it works. I made it for two dinner parties this summer, and both times, everyone had seconds. The secret - balsamic vinegar. It makes the strawberries somehow more strawberry. It was great with local fruit, and I think it would even help jazz up sad and tired grocery store fruit as well. Please, give it a try. The shortcakes are amazing as well. I'm thinking of serving them with sauteed plums in the fall, and later with pears, or as some sort of topping for pear crisp?


2 c. flour
5 TBS sugar, divided
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 c. chilled unsalted butter (diced) I cut up the butter first and pop it into the freezer until the last possible second.
1 c. chilled heavy whipping cream
1 large egg, beaten (for the glaze)


2 lb strawberries, sliced and washed well
6 TBS sugar - divided. Pay attention to how sweet your berries are!
3 TBS balsamic vinegar. You may want to start with one TBS and work up to three - I tell you it's worth it
1 large pinch freshly ground black pepper. The secret ingredient!!!


Preheat oven to 425. Grease baking sheet or line with parchment. Mix flour, 4 TBS sugar, baking powder and salt in food processor - pulsing till blended. Add butter, using pulses until the mixture looks like coarse meal. Add cream and pulse again until clumps form. Dump onto floured work surface and smush into a ball. Pat out to an 8"x4" rectangle and cut into 8 squares. Place shortcakes on prepared sheet and chill in fridge 15 minutes. Then, brush shortcakes with egg glaze and sprinkle with remaining TBS sugar - I really like using sugar in the raw for the sprinkles. Bake about 15 minutes. Cool on cooling rack.

Berries - mix the berries, sugar, vinegar and pepper in bowl and let sit. I let them sit about 3-4 hours. The recipe says 30 minutes, but I found the longer you wait, the more juice they make and the better they taste.

Serve with vanilla whipped cream and enjoy. Courtesy of Bon Appetit magazine - here is the link to their recipe http://http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Strawberry-Shortcakes-with-Balsamic-and-Black-Pepper-Syrup-359412

What are you all cooking? And, do any of you have a slow cooker? Do you use it? Do you like it? Would you recommend a brand? I am teetering on the fence, and would like some more info and guidance.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

2000s Recipes + Menus: Gourmet.com

2000s Recipes + Menus: Gourmet.com This is the recipe I'm talking about - please give it a try!


"the days are long but the years are short." I just read the "Happiness Project" by Gretchen Rubin, and I loved it. And this quote, which was featured prominently, just seems to fit the stage of life that I'm in right now.

It really got me thinking about what makes me happy and how I can do more of those things and to just generally have more joy. August is a month for savoring summer and gearing up for a darker season, so I'm going to try and share a little of the things that make me happy this month.

First off, nectarines and plums :) This cake made me so happy that I wanted to share it - it's from Gourmet Magazine's August 2009 edition. (Sniff, I miss you!) It's in the following post - I'm still as tech unsavvy as ever.

Monday, July 12, 2010

still here

just very busy wrangling a toddler. here's a shot of her at the beach the other day - quite a different creature since last summer.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Easy as Roasting Asparagus

I don't think this counts as a recipe, but it is so delicious, and Solar Powered asked for it - so here it goes.

Roasted Asparagus (adapted from the Gourmet Cookbook)

Olive oil (about 2-3 TBS)

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment and wash asparagus. Chop off bottom (woody part) of asparagus) and place asparagus spears in pan. Drizzle generously with olive oil. Salt and pepper. Roast in oven for 10-15 minutes until cooked through - don't let them burn.

Delicious! Spring is coming!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Wishful Thinking

Happy Monday. I don't know why this is underlining my post, but here goes. If I ever get a good night of sleep again, I would celebrate with a cup of this "Brioche" tea. It is the most delicious I have ever tasted and I need to trek back to Beverly Hills to buy more immediately :)
If you were taking a very short trip sans bambino, where would you go - luxe resort with all sorts of amenities that isn't quite as scenic, or impossibly romantic, lush and gorgeous resort that is a little more bare bones (i.e no TV in the rooms)? I am trying to decide btw the Ritz St. Thomas and Caneel Bay on St. John for a quick little Caribbean getaway.

Oh, and someone is walking. Yikes - happy Monday!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

A Room With A View

When you have a baby, your world becomes a little smaller for a few years. Not in a bad way, because small things like smiles and steps and coos are very precious. But, you aren't exactly footloose and fancy free to set out on adventures. We took a wonderful trip to Italy a few years ago, and I've been working on getting my photos onto DVD. Here are some. Just looking at them makes me nostalgic, but also excited for when we are ready as a family for some fun adventures.

I've been thinking more and more about how precious experiences are as gifts. I remember the trips I've taken so vividly, and I think they are so important.
We are planning a very small getaway this summer - just three nights (about the length of time Nana can wrangle the munchkin), so Italy probably won't be an option. I'm thinking the Caribbean - any advice? And, what is your favorite travel memory? I would kill for some pistachio gelato and prosecco right now :)

Thursday, February 11, 2010


So, I find the term sort of a misnomer, because even when things are babyproof, you still need to watch the baby all the time. Ours has already figured out how to remove the protective outlet covers from the outlets. That said, I have found one amazing babyproofing aid: the retractable baby gate, as found at www.retractagate.com. I'm not sure this link works, but if you google retractable baby gate, it should pop up. It folds away into nothing when baby is in bed, but allows us to use our living room without worry that she will fall down the stairs :).

Thumbs up. I can't tell you how awesome this is. I'm thinking about valentine's day stuff for tomorrow's post, but right now, the miracle of the baby gate is too awesome not to share :)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Tasty Treats, Travel, Rain and Paper

This isn't my photo, but it is from gateau au yaourt.info, which is a french website all about this delectable little cake. It's so easy to make, and the perfect not too sweet and not too rich sort of cake that you can just devour all by yourself. I liked it warm with a cup of tea at night, toasted with jam for breakfast, and then cold with a cup of cocoa. It's the perfect dessert for beverages, because it doesn't overwhelm them. Check out Chocolate and Zucchini's recipe - it's fantastic.

In other news, I've started applying for the munchkin's passport. I figure we will want to take her places at some point, and it takes so darn long for the thing to be ready. Speaking of which, where would you recommend taking babies for a vacation? Any ideas?

It was pouring again today. So, we headed to the mall, went to a Junior League meeting and tried to stay dry. It's clearing tomorrow - I hope!

Monday, February 8, 2010


The munchkin and I went out for a marathon walk this morning - all the way to the promenade and back. We met friends and played in Palisades Park, then headed back home. I always forget that walks wipe me out, but she's just storing up energy in the stroller. My goodness, what energy!

Thursday, February 4, 2010


So I went today - and it's very overwhelming. How do you all plan out your trips? What do you buy? What don't you buy? Help! I feel like it could be really useful, but I just need some practice!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


Baby K's room has no overhead lighting. Now that she's clever and can pull on a floor lamp, I'm in the hunt for a table lamp that sits out of her reach and is relatively attractive. Any thoughts on these?

Monday, February 1, 2010


I feel that I'd be a lot more organized if I had a label maker. It's a round the clock clutter purge around here. I'm getting rid of stuff that I should have thrown away years ago, and starting to look at our place in a whole new light. I'd love to ask you how you all stay organized, and what your secrets are for purging your closets, kitchen and other places of all that clutter!

We had friends over for a big meal of spaghetti, salad and brownies on Saturday - it was great to catch up and enjoy some quality time. With this gloomy economy, and how much fun it is, I'm going to start having people over for dinner more often. This big Juliska platter caught my eye! Can't you just imagine it filled with pot roast or spaghetti and meatballs?
Grey. I am thinking about getting our living room and dining room repainted, and grey is my top color. I'm thinking a very pale, silvery blue grey. Any thoughts?

Friday, January 29, 2010


unhappyhipsters.tumblr.com I hope this link works. I'm so not neat and spare enough for Dwell, so this site brought me a lot of joy!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Things Sleepy Newish Parents Like

The last few weeks have had everyone a little under the weather here at Chez Icing. As a result, we've had to revisit sleep training. Unfortunately, K is sleep training mum and dad by being very angry every night between about 3 and 5. Tonight is the fourth night of sleep re-education, and we are really hoping it's the night we turn the corner. In the meantime, here are some of my likes for these sleepy January days:
Plum jam. SO good. And, it's made by monks!

This loft home office done by Kenneth Brown. Isn't it beautiful? I just need to figure out how to get something like that in our loft.
J. Crew's extra 30 percent off their final sale. My last winter coat was purchased in 2000 and had put in many years of noble service, but it was time for something new. I love this color.

This is a fantastic book about feeding babies. As we venture into the world of solids, I find it very useful.
Cross your fingers that tonight is the night where waking up with a wet diaper is just a prelude to more sleep - not an hour of fussing!

If it isn't, this little machine and frother have been life savers! The coffee is phenomenal, and the frother is great as well. Highly recommended. The coffee comes in the cutest little tubs, and the shipping is incredibly fast.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Something Sweet for 200

As you may have noticed, I almost always choose chocolate. There are, however, some key exceptions. And one of them involves ginger cookies. When I was a little girl, we lived about 100 yards from the public library. The two librarians were the nicest women. My first library card just has my first name on it, because I was too little to write out my last name. And one of them made the absolute best gingersnaps ever. She passed away a couple of years ago, and my mother just passed along her gingersnap recipe. I wanted to share it with you all, and hope that you give them a try. I bet if you made them to eat with a cup of tea and a good book, my kindly librarian would be smiling down on you.

Ginger Cookies

1 egg
1 cup sugar
6 TBS butter (3/4 stick) (I think you could use shortening too, but I wouldn't use oil)
1/4 cup molasses
1 tsp vinegar. It sounds weird, but it works
1 3/4 cup flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 heaping tsp powdered ginger
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves (I bet you could add some nutmeg too if you're so inclined)

1. Preheat oven to 350.

2. Combine butter and sugar. Add the egg, molasses and vinegar. Mix dry ingredients separately, then add to wet. Mix to combine.

3. You can refrigerate the dough at this point, if you like. Grease two cookie sheets (or you can just use parchment paper - I'm a new convert to parchment - it's SO easy!) and make into walnut sized cookies.

4. Bake at 350 until the cookies have cracked tops (usually right around 10-12 minutes). They will still look soft. You can let them cook longer if you prefer a very crispy cookie. Cool slightly on a cooling rack, then dust with powdered sugar. Or, you could dip the cookies into regular sugar before baking.

As you can see, this is post 200 and I wanted to share something delicious. We go through these pretty quickly, so no photos :)

K's Adventures...

Santa was a little confusing, yogurt is not a big hit, but crawling around with a silly hat is a definite do!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Belated Happy New Year


We've been waylaid by colds, teething, holidays, fun outdoors and all sorts of things, but I wanted to get back to the blog!

Here's what I'm working on this week:

Uncluttering my home office - I just love the blog "Unclutterer.com"

Figuring out how to digitally store all the old photo negatives - scanning them to CD perhaps?

Putting the childproof latches on our cabinets - someone is starting to figure out how to open them!

In terms of cooking, check out this fantastic cookbook - Chocolate and Zucchini - I was absolutely blown away by the chocolate caramel tarte!