Veggie Tales

This is what I have been up to in the past week besides knitting a baby blanket...which should be blocked tonight...just gotta weave in those dang ends...ick.

I made a Mexican Lasagna last night with a side of Spanish Rice and tortilla chips. I'm so proud...my husband actually said he would like to have this again. I said, " Well, how about lunch tomorrow." That's what I'm having. It was dang good. I've been getting all of my recipes, except the lentil soup, from those Martha Stewart Everyday Food mini magazines. There are a ton of vegitarian recipes in those and they are really good. This lasagna has a spinach/cilantro mix layered with pinto beans, salsa and pepper jack cheese on corn tortillas. It was super easy.

Also, another thing I'm excited about...a coworker asked me today if I have lost some weight. I can't believe someone can actually tell. Yippie. I've lost almost 10 lbs. This is a good thing! Note: that's a play on words since I mentioned Martha up above...dumb huh?

I have been making these veggie sandwiches for lunch and they are so freakin' good.
I got some of that Tofutti, oh good grief that stuff is awesome...faux cream cheese.
I put that on one layer and olive tapenade on the other, then layer spinach leaves, cucumber and tomato...garnish with vegetable chips and hummus...the best. The bread is a 3-seed wheat from a friend's bakery called Big Sky Bread Company. It's very dense and de-lish.

This is lentil soup from last week...pretty good. It had zucchini, tomatoes, lentils, bay leaves for flavor, some lime and yogurt to top. I believe it is from Vegetarian Times magazine, but don't quote me.


Me and my big ideas

Well, crap...it just dawned on me all the gifts I have to make and everything is at the same time. Me and my big idea to try to be a little "slow" this year and not to spend a bunch of money on gifts. This is my list. I better get busy.

1. Mare's birthday is the day before Flynn's and I'll be getting ready for his first birthday party, so I have to get this made now. Since it is her special "big" birthday, I want to make her the Counterpane Carpet Bag by Carrie Brenner. She will so love this. I've been planning on making me one too...some day! This photo is from the pattern on Ravelry...so pretty...love this yarn!
NOTE: This is the Ravelry link.

2. I would love to make Flynnie something for his birthday...maybe a knitted amiguri monster or something.

3. Dawn's having her special "big" birthday this year too, but I have until August for that one and have to figure out what I'm going to knit her...maybe something to wear...hmmm.

4. I'm already working on a baby blanket for my cousin. The shower is next weekend...nothing elaborate as I haven't had a ton of time to prepare for this one. Photos to come. I'm about 1/4 of the way done with it. It's a baby pink and tan striped blankie.

5. My sister's birthday is in April. I don't know what I'll knit her.

6. Mother's Day...I'd love to make one of the Chevron Scarves from Last Minute Knitted Gifts for my mom. I'll see if I have time to make one for my mother-in-law. Her's might have to be done for Christmas. I want one of these too...and since I'm not getting around to working on those socks I started, might as well use the yarn for now.

7. Father's Day beanies I'm sure will be the easiest and the guys always like those...easy peasy...Ugh!

I'm sure this isn't the last of it.


Knitting What Not

Here's the boy modeling a baby girl "sluggo" hat. It's a little tiny for his big knoggin.
I'm putting together a few pieces to start selling locally and probably/finally on Etsy.
I've got a black one done too...see below...lots more of these to come.

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I love how the top of hats turn out from the decreasing. This yarn in particular made a pretty flower-y shape.

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Here's Ape (ah-pey) modeling the black one. He's not diggin' it.
he hates hats! And, of course I have a little fez for him...guess it will have to be Flynn's now.

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This kid...

I swear. I can hardly stand it....I love him so much. Happy Valentine's Day Boo Boo.
Just look at that face, not to mention the crazy hair-do. He is hysterical...what a card.

We were laying on the bed reading his photo book (he's on the cover at about 4 months old) last Wednesday and I got some great shots of him flipping through tht pages. He's so funny cause he almost points at things cause he used his finger to touch. He's touching the tag on this one. He loves tags by-the-way...goes right for those. I suppose pots and pans will be his next adventure. He is such a happy little man. He's toothing right now too and not a peep about it (got one pokin' through)...just happy go lucky...no, how lucky am I?

I take Wednesday's off and get to spend the whole day with him. It's so much fun. We take naps together and read and play on the floor and go shopping. We just take our time and do whatever we want. He is going to be crawling I bet within a week. He can flip and flop and rotate around but can't scoot anywhere just yet. What an amazing thing is this little boy!!!

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Buttnernut Yum!

Her it is...my very first "vegetarian" meal...and my fist soup from scratch.
It turned out really good. My husband and sister both liked it for real. I got it from a Martha Stewart Food Magazine...a recent issue.

You can take pretty much any vegetable and put it into this formula:
I used one large butternut squash, peeled and cubed
brown an onion in 2T olive oil (I hate onions, but knew the flavor would add a lot to the soup and since it was pureed I would hardly know it was there...except in my head...I will probably only do an half onion next time so I don't taste it as much...I have a weird life long relationship with onions...eww.)
Then, boil all with two cups veggie broth and water to cover then simmer until tender.
Puree in batches in blender and add salt, pepper, lemon and a dollup of non-fat yogurt (yes, dairy, but working on that).
It was super easy. I'll try mushroom or carrot next time. And, you can freeze this really easy. It makes a lot...probably 6 servings.

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You're a WHAT?

I’ve officially become vegetarian. Oh my gosh…What?

Uh yes, I said vegetarian.

I have lived my life without a thought about what food is and where it comes from. I’m a junk food junkie…well, I guess not anymore. I’ve felt icky about eating meat off and on for a few years now…just basically get grossed out…but have put it behind the ol’ thinking cap and ignored it. Plus, now is the time in my life when I have to be responsible to myself and my son…and why not, let’s throw the husband in the mix too.

It scares me to think about what yuckiness I have put into my body from eating fast food over the years, mostly McDonald’s. What goes into my body makes me who I am…lethargic and fat.

Maybe it would make a difference if it was all organic and came from good farms, but some stuff I’ve read even talks about how humans are really herbivores and shouldn’t even eat the meat of other animals period. It all really makes sense. And, I’ve known this…it just finally hit me and became real in the last couple of weeks. I’m contemplating fish…but we’ll see. Trying to avoid milk and eggs…that’s another story I suppose, cause I don’t really want to be hard-core vegan. Anywhoo…

I’ve been doing a lot of research and reading up and after having to eat at Eischen’s Chicken this past weekend, not by my choice…no more….I’m done….ewww!

It is my commitment from here on out to not eat meat.

I read Fast Food Nation a couple of years ago and was grossed out by the meat manufacturing and mistreatment of animals as well as human workers for that matter. But, somehow…call it laziness and lack of motivation…I got pulled back in by the fast food giants down the street without thinking about the details.

When I was at Target recently, I picked up a comical little book called Skinny Bitch…which I thought would be just a fun diet book to give me a little motivation…no, it’s on the same lines as Fast Food Nation, giving you the “skinny” about what we put into our bodies and why we shouldn’t, ie: meats, dairy, etc. That book is hysterical by-the-way and tells it like it is, which is what I needed to hear. I highly recommend it! I just got the sequel, which is a little vegan cook-book, Bitch in the Kitch.

Other motivations for making the move are:
1) Need to eat my veggies anyway and get healthy and loose weight
2) Need to learn to cook and like/love to cook
a) to save money
b) to slow down on the consumerism and purchasing/eating out
c) to be a good momma and wife and provide healthy meals for my fam
3) Doing the “Biggest Loser” competition at work and I can win some much needed dough.
4) A good excuse to do my Bento Box again

I’ve never been a hard-core committer on diets, so I’m going to take it slow adding this into my life so as not to be overwhelmed. I’ve never enjoyed cooking, never had to cook and really don’t understand it if that makes any sense. I just walk into the grocery store dumbfounded sometimes.

So, over the weekend, I put together some yummy recipes and went to the store for this week’s meals:
tonight: butternut squash soup
veggie sandwiches with hummus and tapenade
Mexican lasagna…yum!
lentil burgers
lentil soup

I want to start going to the Farmer’s Market on Saturday’s because it was really depressing all the non-organic or vegetarian items at the grocery store. And, we don’t have a Whole Foods, just a tiny little health food store that’s really expensive.

I’ve also been inspired by my knitting friend Aimee and her friend Riana in their commitment to being SLOW. You must follow what they are up to. They are both American’s in France…which is cool in itself to experience that. Riana has made a year long commitment to not buying anything and making and growing her own everything…unbelievable. And, Aimee’s trying it out for a month. These women are so interesting and amazing mothers!

Consumption is a problem for me. I spend way too much and therefore have way too much crap in my house and it’s bogging me down. Slowly but surely I’m getting rid of stuff, but not fast enough. I still feel overwhelmed. So, I’m making a commitment right now to work on this…

- Don’t spend
- Sell what we have that we don’t need. Or give it away.
- Make gifts…don’t buy. Knit… therefore I’m working on a baby gift for a shower coming up in a couple of weeks. Lots of other knitting posts to come. I swear I've been knitting!

This is certainly not a political statement or pro-anything. I’m not a granola that’s for sure. And, I’m not an activist. But, I do want to make a difference to myself and for my happy little family. Who knows, maybe I’ll rub off on somebody else.


Pint / Half Pint

Can you stand the cuteness? My sweet boys...Daddy and Bitty.
These tees were a gift for JD for his birthday. Of course he put it on instantly and had to have Flynn's on too...and photos soon insued. They are so adorable, especially with their matching skullys, denims and trainers.

I know you all think your kids are the cutest in the world...but that's just not humanly possible. Just look at that little baby boy. He makes me so happy I cry sometimes just looking at him.

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