Thursday, February 17, 2011

For the Birds

Are these the best photo's? Not so much. In all fairness though, these weren't so much meant to go up here on my blog. I took these photo's to show potential shoppers the bird house that I'm selling in a sort of  "virtual yard sale" on a locally based board. I decided to post these here as a reminder for myself after the interest people showed in it.

I have to give credit to my step-dad too. The painting on this bird house was partially inspired by him. He's an artist and being around him was always very motivating when it came to any art I felt like tackling. The rest of my inspiration came from the area we live in throughout the seasons. The front in the first picture is spring, the second picture are the mountains here in the winter on a starry night, and the last picture is one of the local beaches during summer. I've never been to another beach in the world quite like the ones they have here. Selling it, is making me feel very nostalgic. Isn't it odd how the little things like this can make you feel like that?

Blurring the Smoothie line

So, this is not my normal preference when I'm posting about some dish I've made. I like taking a picture of the final pretty product and putting that on display for everyone to see. This mess that you see is all that was left after the kids had their first taste. Since this passed the pickiest eaters test, I thought I'd share this mix I stumbled on. Some of the ingredients are going to sound pretty whacky but health is really important to me for my family. Combine that with the picky eater from hell that is my youngest son, and it becomes my own personal challenge to slip whatever nutrition I can to him without him knowing.

1/2 cup peanuts
1 tablespoon grape seed oil
coconut water (to desired smoothness)
1 tbsp soaked flax seed
2 tbsp slippery elm
1 tbsp Acacia fiber
1 inch aloe vera leaf
2 bananas
coconut milk
Chocolate chips

Blend the peanuts, grape seed oil, slippery elm, acacia fiber, and flax seed in a food processor. (To soak flax seeds, just put them in a small bowl with some water overnight in the fridge. It turns into the goopiest slime you can imagine but it's got tons of health benefits.) Add small amounts of coconut water to your pseudo peanut butter until it reaches it's desired creaminess. Open the aloe vera leaf and scrape the clear gel from the inside and throw it straight in with everything else. Chunk the two bananas up and add them to the peanut butter in the processor and blend. While the processor is running slowly add the cold coconut milk until you reach the desired thickness. Pour into your server of choice, be it a bowl or a glass and top with a handful of your favorite chocolate chips. It was such a hit with my boys they almost licked their bowls clean. 
Mange and good health everyone!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Portabello Package

This dish was inspired by three of my favorite celebrity chefs, Emeril Lagasse, Guy Fieri and Giada De Laurentiis. If you're not in the know, we're a gluten free family. We found this fabulous GF bakery nearby but it turns out that they use pectin and yeast in all of their breads so, sadly, we're once again without bread. I've been desperate for dishes with buns or breads and after an evening of watching several cooking shows, I was obsessed with the idea of this dish. It turned out sooooo tasty!

1 portabello mushroom, de-stemmed and cleaned of all gills, per person
1 annaheim pepper per person
2 slices of roast beef (or your favorite lunch meet)
Fresh seasonal greens to your liking

Can you get much simpler than that? After cleaning the portabello mushroom up and lightly brushing both sides with extra virgin olive oil, I grilled it lightly. I removed the seeds from the anaheim pepper, and cut it from top to bottom so that I could lay it out flat on the grill. I brushed it with the extra virgin olive oil and grilled it lightly before stacking it straight on top of the portabello mushroom. Throw the lunch meat on the grill and get it nice and warm to top off the anaheim and portabello. I finished it all off with salad greens that looked too lovely to pass up in the store. It was super tasty just as it was, but I had a flash of further inspiration and added some Wholly guacamole and some home made tomatillo salsa. It was out of this world. If anyone else has had any fun dishes they've been inspired to make lately, I'd love to hear them!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Hair today, Gone tomorrow

Once upon a time, there lived a girl with long, wavy and slightly crazy hair. 

Bored and restless after growing it for 3 long years, she impetuously ran to a stylist a friend had recommended instead of her regular trusted stylist. 

Moral of the story, walk, don't run to anyone holding a pair of scissors. Second moral of the story, trust your gut. If every stylist you've been to before is contradicted by the one standing over your head with scissors, scream "fire!" and run for the hills. 

Hopefully, I can wash it and style it into something fabulous. For now, I can live with it even though it's not what I asked for. Hair grows back. If you've ever had a haircut where you've gotten unexpectedly not so great results, shed a little tear for me. Maybe it will help ease some of my suffering. Cheers everyone!

Although I didn't get the hairstyle I wanted, I did get to donate my hair to Locks of Love. Please take a minute to check out their site: It's a great organization and even if you don't have the hair to donate, there are tons of ways to help support their mission. xoxo