April 11, 2012

I'm thankful for daily opportunities to blossom.

Today take the time to remind someone that they can blossom.


Lemony Kale & White Bean Soup

April 10, 2012

I'm pretty much absolutely DONE being sick.

I'm so done that I've taken to trying out bizarre folk remedies like eating whole cloves of garlic and putting Vicks on the bottom of my feet. On both accounts it was, unpleasant.

A more pleasurable anti-sick effort - making this soup.

This soup is So. Dang. Good.

This soup is bright, simple and delicious.

It is easy, fairly quick (depending on your mood) and a great Vegetarian/Vegan option.

Kale is packed with antioxidants and helps to detoxify the body, and fresh parsley brings even more Vitamin C and A.

So this soup is pretty virtuous.

Fingers crossed that it heals me.

// Lemony Kale & White Bean Soup //

1 bunch of organic Kale, de-ribbed and torn into bite sized pieces
1 carrot, diced
1/2 large yellow onion, diced
3 ribs of celery, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
Handful of italian flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 can white beans, based on preference
2 medium yellow potatoes
48oz low sodium chicken broth / veggie broth + more to thin out as needed/desired
Olive oil
Zest of 1/2 lemon

Dice/mince vegetables, set aside. Peel and chop potatoes, set aside.

Heat a bit of olive oil over medium in a heavy bottomed pot. Add onion, celery, carrot and sauté until soft. Add garlic, parsley and potatoes and sauté for a few minutes.

Add chicken/veggie broth and bring to a simmer. Add beans and cook until potatoes are cooked through and broth has come together, perhaps 10 or so minutes. When I'm sick, I tend to make the soup faster than normal...

Once you're ready to eat, add kale pieces and lemon zest. Stir to combine, and serve! If you prefer to fully cook the kale, let simmer for awhile longer. I like the greens to be fresh and only slightly cooked, so I just let them wilt slightly.

Serve with crusty bread and enjoy!


Promise of Spring

April 9, 2012

It's on days like this when I get really excited that we're moving back to a tropical paradise.

Recently during our time in Southern California, there was no shortage of outdoor beauty to photograph. Literally, as soon as I stepped off the plane and looked up at the sky, I took a photo. Why? It was blue. Bright blue with a hint of tropical fabulousness. As soon as I stepped out of the car I wanted to capture the immense beauty of land, sea, and sky - I honestly felt like a tourist. (Yes, there are downright nasty parts of Southern CA too. But thankfully our journey didn't bring us to those parts. :) )

Today, I stepped outside my home here in Spokane and looked up at the sky. Gray. I looked around the yard. Brown.

But then I started to find tiny reminders that Spring is coming. And for these, I will celebrate!


Happy Easter!

April 8, 2012

Let's party.



Mini Apple Sharlotka // Master's Thesis Fuel

April 6, 2012
My husband is a rockstar. 

He's been great these past few weeks - tons of change, lots of new things to think about, taking care of a sick and cranky wife and working on his huge Master's thesis. 

He's the best. 

So yesterday afternoon, when I was hopped up on what may have been an overdose of DayQuil, I found this easy recipe for Apple Sharlotka and decided to make it for MR. It's Russian, and as his primary focus has been 1930's Soviet Russian Music, I thought it was fitting. 

I adapted the recipe from Deb, and only realized that I'd thrown out my cake pans when I went to fill, the Mini Apple Sharlotka was born. 

Yields 12 muffin sized cakes

*Note: If you're wanting to make a full sized Sharlotka, make sure to follow Deb's original recipe here.

The Essentials:

4 large Granny Smith Apples
3 large Eggs
3/4 cup Sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla
1 cup flour

Preheat oven to 350.

Peel and chop the apples. Beat eggs and sugar together; add vanilla. Stir flour into egg mixture and mix until just combined. The batter will be really thick.

Grease muffin pan. Add chopped apples, then top off with batter. It doesn't expand much, so feel free to fill right to the top. (See photo above.) Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Bake for 20 minutes - but I would check at 15 minutes to prevent over cooking. They're done when a toothpick comes out clean.

MR enjoyed them warm from the oven, but you can top with whipped cream if you like. Enjoy!


We're back / SB Adventures

April 2, 2012

We are back! After spending last week in sunny California we feel recharged to make it through these last couple months here in Spokane. I wish I would express how good it felt to be back there again. So. good. 

Ahhh, and the sun. It was GLORIOUS. 

But even better than the sun was seeing our dear family. After a rental car mishap, we ended up driving up the coast with my sister Kaitlyn - an unexpected delight that started the trip off right. The next few days were filled with walks, beach time, seeing friends, wrestling with Landon, eating good food, and really adjusting to the idea of living in a tropical paradise once again. 

And we stayed with my favorite family around:
Landon is the most inquisitive, articulate and joyful child. 
My brother inspires me every time I see him with his passion and creativity. 
Anna is a glowing beauty who is such an example of goodness in so many ways.

Thanks guys for always welcoming us with such joy!

 Bonus: We even got to meet up with Matthew's Mom and wish his Granddad a happy 95th Birthday. 

All in all, a great trip. :)

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