Monday, July 20, 2009

Domesticity Strikes

I am trying to get back into my domestic groove. I think I have had plenty of excuses after having a baby: "I'm too tired", "Shower -vs- cooking competition", and just feeling tired after caring for a baby and feeling NO drive to make a meal, or do anything creative in the home for that matter.

So after a vacation and now that Miya is getting to be a little more independent I have gotten my mojo back, or at least part of my mojo. I think one can only tolerate frozen trader joe's meals for so long (they are good, but can't replace home cooked meals.) So I planned my first week of meals and did my foodshopping and am on a roll. I planned many meals from The Pioneer Woman and it felt good to be working in the kitchen again. Also now that Miya seems to be tolerating dairy again (praise the Lord!) I feel like it's easier to plan normal meals now. Next time you see me I may be a whole 20 pounds heavier because I am making up for lost time with my beloved friends cheese and ice cream :) I can't get enough! Here are a few recent discovers that have been keeping me busy:

Easy homemade Artisan Bread

I found this great way to make bread that is seriously NO FUSS! I love my bread maker and still use it for a lot of different stuff, but I love artisan bread and you can't really get that from the bread maker. I found this great Instructable online that comes from the book "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day". It is seriously some good stuff. Basically you follow the instructions and make a batch of dough that doesn't even need to be kneaded. Store it in the fridge for up to 2 weeks and grab a ball when you need for loaves of bread, pizza crust, or rolls. You can get creative and make a round loaf or a baguette. She includes videos with instructions on how to prepare and cook the dough. You can use it to accompany meals or use for sandwiches.

If you don't think you can use it in 2 weeks you can parbake (bake 90% of the way) and then freeze it like that and bake the rest of the way when it thaws. I also halved the recipe as is suggested in order to have room to store it in the fridge and since I don't think I could use the whole batch from the original recipe. The dough develops a nice sourdough flavor after a few days...Mmmmm.

Another of my favorite blogs is Simple Mom. She posted this link in her weekend links: "20 Tips to Waste Less Food" from Small notebook. This was so helpful as I am still trying to learn how to not waste food! She has so many great pointers and you can find even more helpful tips in the comments section. My favorite was freezing fresh lemon or lime juice in ice cube trays so you can use it for recipes when you need it. She also mentions freezing leftover wine in ice cube trays for soups and or sauces. Such a great idea.

If you need some fresh inspiration check out Simple Mom, she is doing a whole series on Homemaking called Back to the Basics!

More on life soon...

living life

So, obviously there hasn't been much blogging going on! I think (especially with a baby) we have just been living life and haven't had so much time to blog about it. Life is good, we have so much to be thankful for. Our little girl is growing up (she is 16 weeks!) and time is just flying by. Lew and I keep finding ourselves sighing before bed saying things like: "before we know she will be potty training!" It just blows me away how she is literally changing before our eyes. Growing in leaps and bounds and learning so much. I am enjoying every moment, watching her discover the world fills me with awe and makes me want to discover things all over again. It's amazing how babies and children are captivated by the little things, like a red speck on the carpet, or a mirror showing their own reflection. It makes you think about how we are called to be like children, life comes down to the little things sometimes.

Either way I have many things I have been wanting to post. We just got back from the beach and had a great time. It's good to be home again, but we are missing all the company of my family too! We also had a great visit from the Lewis Grandparents and Aunt Cherai. It's hard to believe the summer is halfway over. More to come...