Friday, and a reminder!

I have mentioned a few times this year that 2014 is the year that I am trying to embrace healthy, home cooked, hearty meals. At least three times a week (with enough left over to carry the rest of the days) I have managed to make it happen!

I am not really sure why I was so hesitant to try my hand, but think it is mainly that I was scared to screw up which obviously isn't really a reason not to try. I still am not great at meal planning, but with only three meals a week to aim for I really doesn't irritate me too much to make a couple grocery runs (not sure why, but I HATE grocery stores). 

The best thing for us is that we are eating better food, saving money (I didn't anticipate that, BONUS!) and we aren't trying to scrounge up something for lunch or dinner at the last minute the following day. So far 2014 resolution is a success!

[ chopping herbs for a rub on a roast chicken with my favorite Jamie Oliver knife ]
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And on a totally unrelated note, don't forget that this weekend is the last weekend you can sign up for my Be Crafty workshop at the discounted early bird price!!!

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Seats are $70 for the rest of the weekend then go up to $85 next week so don't wait too much longer if you are hoping to attend. I know $70 seems like a bit, but I can promise that Amanda and I have cooked up some really fun crafts and there will be plenty of snacks and refreshments from local vendors and don't forget about the sweet swag bag everyone will be leaving with (which I can't disclose what is inside yet, but I can promise it is good!). You can grab your tickets here if you want to join in the fun!

Now go have a great weekend, you!

I don't believe in Resolutions, BUT...

I have never set New Years resolutions. Not once in my life. I just don't believe in trying to change things or expect myself to stick with it, so I just keep on keepin' on. And this year is no different.

But a couple weeks before Christmas Sean and I had a fairly deep conversation. I can't even remember how it all started, or why but it somehow evolved into us telling the other person what single thing we would change about them if we could ( these can be dangerous waters guys! tread carefully!).
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I told Sean I wish he would try not to sleep in so much on the weekends. Trust me, I know I live a charmed life when that is my one complaint. But we love hanging with him since he works so much during the week, so we want any extra time we can get!

Sean's wish was that I try learning how to be a better cook. It is a totally valid wish, but if you know me, you know it is kind of a lost cause. We don't eat out all that much, but I have learned to HEAVILY rely on a local dinner service that pre-portions all the ingredients for a meal and all I have to do is follow the simple instructions and cook it. I love this because I feel that every time I attempt a recipe I need $50 in ingredients I didn't have laying around, and what doesn't get used will almost always go to waste.

But since we each picked one thing I promised to try my darnedest to whip up something creative a few nights a week (Rome wasn't built in a day...).

I have a pretty decent cookbook collection from Williams Sonoma (which I now see is entirely online here)
so I have been picking a couple meals every week to attempt.


{ probably the first time this sink has given spinach a bath }
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The reviews from both my test subjects have been good, or they must be great actors with iron clad stomachs, and I think I may have turned a corner in my hatred of cooking. Something about seeing them enjoy dinner time so much makes me almost enjoy it. Almost.

lunch time is a totally different story though...
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Do you have anything you wish you could change about yourself? Or more importantly, your partner LOL?

Berry, Scones, and Cream. Oh my!

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We had a little break in the heat this morning! Wren and I hadn't enjoyed a good baking session in a while (I don't think turning on the oven is wise when you don't have AC...) so we quickly mixed up a batch of our go-to favorite: scones. 

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When you think about it, scones are actually one of the most versatile things to bake! You can add things to the mix, or top afterwards for endless options. But our classic favorite is plain scones with fresh, warm berries and whipped cream!
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If you are interested in making a batch of your own here is our little twist on the recipe:

2 cups flour
1/4 cup of sugar
1/2 teaspoon of salt
6 tablespoons of cold unsalted butter
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 cup of milk

1. mix the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder together
2. dice up the butter into little cubes and add to the flour mixture, mix until just starting to look like pea-sized dough balls
3. add in your milk and mix until it is nice and even.
4. make 6-8  1/2 inch thick rounds out of your dough and bake at 240 for approximately 7-10 minutes (until golden). You can use a cookie cutter if you like but Wren enjoys shaping hers by herself and it is a good project that doesn't require perfection so encourage the kids to get messy here!

To make the hot berry topping we just throw some fresh berries in a frying pan with a little water and a tablespoon of sugar. Stir as they simmer for about 3-5 minutes and serve on your fresh scones!
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Little confession: they are better as breakfast.
I hope you try to make some on your next cool summer morning!