Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Day

To all you women out there that are lucky enough to call yourself a mom, Happy Mother's Day!  I spent my day relaxing.  No, breakfast was not served in bed for me.  The two boys in this house never make it out of bed before me.  We had a: Nice. Quiet. Simple. Relaxing. Day.  It was really quite perfect.  I got a pair a bowling shoes (we have a summer bowling pass) and a ukelele.  Yeah, sounds a little weird but a uke has been on my wishlist for awhile now.  I played the trumpet for eight years and sang in choir in both high school and college so I'm really missing music in my life.  Now I just need to find someone to teach me how to play the darn thing (it seems a bit more complicated than a trumpet).  At least the dog didn't howl when I attempted to play the ukelele today.  Every time I whip out the trumpet (not often) he howls like the world is coming to an end.  I'd be insulted except he does the same thing when the phone rings and I know that isn't out of pitch.

I did find time to make myself a couple gifts today.  The first one was with the help of my four year old.  We made a cute little thumb print heart key chain.  Please don't think I'm a genius because I'm not.  I totally got the idea from centsationalgirl.  This is made from polymer clay.  You might remember a few months ago when I made some cute holiday ornaments with it.  My son loves helping with this stuff.  As you can see, I added his initials and the year to mine.  LOVE IT. 

My husband was also nice enough to entertain my son for a few hours while I taught myself how to sew a dart.  After learning my new skill, I promptly made four in my sweet new summer purse.

 I can't tell you how much I love my new purse.  It makes me smile big when I see it.  It is so stinkin' cute and I made it! I found the pattern at verypurpleperson for free!  The only modifications I made were adding an interior pocket and making my handles approximately 2 inches longer (SO glad I did that).

When I come back, I'll show you what I gifted the two moms in my life (can't show you till they receive it).  Here is a sneak peak:

 Till then, find something you enjoy and DO IT!  :)


Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Dinner: Brought to You By the Letters M & G

This meal was special.  It was the first meal of the season from My Garden!  Yep, you read that right! My. Garden.  Come on people, that is pretty impressive, it is only early May.  In Wisconsin.  I certainly deserve a pat on the back or nice high five.  Miracle worker?  Maybe. Ok, now even I am rolling my eyes.  I thank my good friend global warming for making this meal happen about a month early.  I also finally found a meal that my obnoxious precious four year old would eat (even if it was only five bites).  That in and of itself deserves a high five!

The original recipe is from my favorite foodie magazine, Everyday Food, April 2012 issue.  Love it.  I've been a subscriber for years.  In the last few months they got a new editor, Sarah Carey.  You may know her from the PBS Everyday Food show or from Martha Stewart's show.  She is the spunky red head.  I got to say, there has been a great improvement in the content of the issues.  I'm really digging this magazine full force again!  If it has been awhile since you've picked up this magazine, now is a good time. 

I adapted my recipe slightly but it holds pretty darn true to the original.  My way or their way, you won't lose with this meal.

Shrimp & Pasta with pesto (my way)

1 lb short pasta
1 lb shrimp (whatever is on sale).  Honestly, I bought the precooked cocktail ring jumbo shrimp because it was cheaper than the frozen raw shrimp.
1/2 lb fresh green beans
1 bunch parsley (whatever amount fills your food processor)
8 mint leaves
1/2 cup toasted almond pieces (pieces are cheaper people)
3/4 cup EVOO
Ricotta Cheese

While pasta cooks,  put parsley, mint, and almonds in your food processor.  Slowly add EVOO.  Season with S&P.   In the last couple of minutes that the pasta is cooking, add the green beans to the pot (with the pasta), cook for 2 or 3 minutes. Drain pasta and green beans and reserve 1/2 cup of the liquid from the pot.  Put pasta and green beans back in the pot and cover with the pesto.  Season with more S&P.  Let everyone dollop ricotta onto their serving. Serve with some nice crunchy garlic bread.  This will serve 5 to 6 people.

Oh yeah, and here is a link to the original (not that you need it):  Shrimp and penne with spring herb pesto from Martha and Everyday Foods.