Life and Sundry

The Kitchen
The Best Oatmeal.

I have around 30ish recipes for oatmeal on this site. For someone who isn't a huge fan of a lot of breakfast foods, I like oatmeal. Most of those recipes are based off of a formula of one part oatmeal to one part water to one part milk. Guys, its wrong. As much as I can dress up a bowl of oatmeal with just about anything, (Lime wedges? Sure! PB&J? Delicious! Mascarpone cheeseMercy.), the underlying bowl of oats should taste good on its own. Unfortunately, the one to one to one ratio just ends up with goop. Thick, rib-sticking, hearty, but goop, nonetheless.

Yogurt Biscuits.

I have a thing about buying ingredients I don't regularly use. When I'm reading through a new recipe, if it calls for an ingredient I don't normally have on hand, or regularly buy, I usually skip it. It has to sound really, really good for me to buy something I may not be able to use up. For some reason, one ingredient I've held off on buying for a long time was whole wheat pastry flour. A recipe that called for it was immediately glossed over. I bookmarked a few, just in case, but mostly I just moved on. 

Kitchen Basics: How to make stock.

Making stock always seemed to me to be one of those things that people did when they had an abundance of time, a greater abundance of skill, and a certain touch of fussiness to their cooking preferences. The first time I made it myself, I was shocked how easy making stock really was. It came out watery and a bit weaker than I expected, but I had made it all by myself, using things I would normally have thrown away. I've learned, since that time, how to make the stock rich and full of flavor.

The Stacks

She liked the yellow peeps, mostly, because yellow didn't seem as garish a color to put in your body as magenta or electric blue. Violet had cut a slit in the thin plastic wrapping around their box and let them sit on the counter for a few weeks. She stared at them now, willing herself to wait. They were her Easter morning tradition, having just one before church, after her usual breakfast of eggs and toast. Violet couldn't stand them fresh, all spongy and odd textured, but once they had sat open, aged a bit, their texture became like nougat and that, that she loved.

She was exhausted. Madeline had just gotten off a 12 hour shift, and she had another one starting at 8 am the next day, and all she wanted to do was kick off her shoes, grab some popcorn, and veg on the couch and watch a movie. Instead, she started chopping tomatoes for a salad. Her parents were coming for dinner tonight, staying the night on the way to her mother’s work conference another days drive further on.

"Everybody has a story. What's yours?" Paul shook himself out of his reverie and looked at the young woman in the chair next to his. She had tubes running to one of her arms, and a bright yellow blanket across her lap. She smiled at him, waiting.

Family
Picture Fun.

I've gotten a bit behind on updating throughout this school year, so I thought I'd post some of my favorite shots, despite them being a bit outdated now. Hope you enjoy!

School.

Jonathan begins kindergarten on Tuesday. It seems crazy, that it's come this soon, that this is the last weekend that won't be sandwiched between school weeks. He's ready, I think, since he can read and write, knows some geography, math, and is learning to spell. He's ready to soak in what he can, and quick.

Games.

Jonathan LOVES to play board games. Up to this point, we've been playing traditional toddler games, Chutes and Ladders, Candy Land, things like that. This week, after yet another request to play the endless Chutes and Ladders, I decided to try something different.

Random Thoughts
Spring!

Spring is finally here (I think). I'm itching to put flowers in the ground, but we've still got a few nights ahead where it could freeze, so I'm holding off a bit longer. I decided to take Jonathan to the greenhouse down the street the other day though.

Things I love! Mostly stuff off of etsy, but not all. Let's jump right in!

On Gardening.

I've learned a great deal from my garden this year. It's the first year I've been able to garden with ground instead of pots, and I love it. While I'm no expert in gardening, (see above: first year in ground), I thought I'd share what I've learned.