Friday, August 7, 2009

Good Taste: ah, these lonely summer nights

When dinnertime rolls around, my poor intern husband Shaner is usually right smack in the middle of his trillion-hour work day. Now that suppertime is down to two participants, Peter and myself, I've had to dig deep to actually get something presentable to the table . I promised myself I would write this post to report that yes, I actually do try to cook when it's just the two of us. And that the meal was not shaped like dinosaur chicken nuggets. It's the whole accountability thing. And, yes, I know that cooking good food is a nice gesture to myself, because there is nothing more deppressing than feeding myself food that is an orange color that may only exist naturally on Mars. So, here's my report of the Lloyd's summer menu lately:

Chicken Salad with Potatoes and Arugula

Beautiful salad that takes no more than 20 minutes to put together. Plus some pineapple and cantaloupe for Pete. I think he must have eaten half of the cantaloupe while I was cutting it up.

Pasta with Leeks, Peas, and Prosciutto

It's so pretty to eat. Whenever I cook with leeks, I feel kind of French. Speaking of, ah, I am dying to see Julie and Julia asap. Don't tell me that you already saw it, because I will not be happy for you, just slightly bugged and resentful for me. Really, I just want to be Julie, who thought to do a Julia Child blog, because I DID get the same cookbook for my last birthday with the very same intention of cooking through it, although I did not start a blog about this process. Nor did I write a book about it. Nor did someone make a movie about that book. Nor did I really get past the first 3 pages of soup recipes. But, dang, that soup was good!

The pasta recipe calls for prosciutto, which may seem a bit extravagant, but can really do wonders for the flavor. Heck, pasta, peas, leeks, butter? How much does that all cost together, like $3.00? A few more bucks for beautiful prosciutto? Yes.

And the next day, I finished up my prosciutto by making some paninis with tomato soup: ciabatta with mozzarella, basil, and prosciutto. Yeah, the prosciutto was an excellent investment.

Monday, August 3, 2009

The Good [Handmade] Stuff: Big Boy Duvet

We've got a baby coming, which meant that we needed to kick Pete out of his crib and get him situated in a big boy bed. I saw this duvet and wanted to try to recreate it. I am insane. I did finish it, miraculously, and learned more than I ever wanted to know about applique and fusible interfacing.

I'm particularly fond of the bug pulling the trailer and the convertible:

I admit, I still love the version I found online better, but this blogger is a pro at sewing and I'm still a rookie! I was glad to have my own version.

For the back, I did wide stripes

and the pillow, I used up the rest of my car fabric from Purl.

Mission accomplished! Pete is happy every night to have his cool car blanket and I am really happy that he loves it so much. And, so far, we haven't had any nighttime wanderers visit us in the night. Hopefully, he continues to stay happily dreaming in his bed!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

The Good [Neighborhood] Stuff: The Avenues

Shane and I both agree on the great importance of the walkability factor in our neighborhood. Our New Haven neighborhood had some great streets to stroll (or run) around right outside our door, which was fortunate. We have been equally blessed in our new home to have some great strolling streets (but, definitely no running for me these days! Baaad idea) so I took along my camera to show off some of my favorite spots in Salt Lake's oldest neighborhood:
People in the Aves love
their old houses:

The building above is a garage to the house pictured below.

their gardens:

(I'm loving these desert plants that are unique to this fabulously dry climate.)

and their chocolate shop.
People in the Aves also love their cats (not shown).

Another great bonus is seeing my old elementary school, The Open Classroom, in it's permanent home as an official charter school (complete with organic school lunch and and Jr. High!) The Open Classroom is a parent cooperative and a beautiful example of how to bring the best out of kids. I only wish that we could bring it back with us to Connecticut, so Pete could have such a positive academic experience!

So, if you've lived in the aves, do tell what your favorite spot is!