Thursday, September 26, 2013

Pleasant Surprises (in the kitchen)

Sometimes I get a little adventurous in my recipe "pinning". Something may look delicious on the computer screen, but when it comes to trying out the recipe my bravery sometimes fades. However, this week I took on a new recipe that was pretty far outside of my domestic comfort zone...a Thai inspired dish. Last night I made this Thai Penaut Quinoa Salad, with a few twists, and I LOVED the result.

Here's my changes: I didn't have quinoa on hand for once (we're quinoa fans in this house), so I swapped that with some couscous I had in the cupboard. I don't do cashews, so we subbed in some chopped peanuts. I omitted the basil. I think I added more than the recommended 1 cup of chopped cabbage and just eyeballed how much couscous I added. And the kicker...I sauted some shrimp in soy sauce and garlic powder and added that to the salad so it had the protein we were missing from the quinoa. This was really good. Ava even enjoyed it...I think she especially liked digging her fingers into that couscous. I was so anxious for leftovers, that I may have gotten into them before 11 am today. :)

We've also been working our way through large amounts of garden produce that we have been lucky enough to be given throughout this summer. This week, we put some of the zucchini towards some brownies! While the concept is similar to zucchini bread (replace egg with zucchini for moisture) I'd never tried this in brownie form. And this household loves it some brownies. We tried out this recipe two nights ago, and it hits the spot! They taste totally decadent.

Not all my kitchen adventures are successes, so I'll count these two as wins and add them to my cookbook!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Camera Roll

Got the wagon and the wooden nickel; ready for the Farmer's Market!

Ava with Grandma Janie and Great Grandma Day.

Feeding ducks with some cousins and Daddy.

Watching Grandma Cheryl bowl

Little wave.

Morning trance :)

Sometimes a walk can be exhausting.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Ava's First Float Trip

Earlier this month, we decided the time had come for our Little Miss to go on her first float trip.  A nice warm day to end a 3 day holiday weekend seemed like the perfect opportunity. So we packed up a cooler full of snacks, a bag of waterproof toys, life jackets, paddles, seat cushions, towels, the canoe and took off for the river.

We floated around on the Niangua River for several hours, and considering Ava was still running that recent low grade fever, she did very well. She was able to watch some cows, crows, fish, frogs, crawfish and an owl all in their natural habitat.

Ava stayed occupied by watching and helping her dad catch fish, mooing to the cows, counting leaves in her hand and ignoring her toys in favor of putting rocks in her bucket then throwing them into the river. We also gave her a couple different seating areas (a camp chair in front of mommy, or a tackle box in front of daddy), so that she had toddler options (so important!). She was also treated to something special to drink that day...chocolate milk! Yum. :)

Monkey See, Monkey Do

Heart Melter

Please look past the odd camera phone lighting and partially painted wall in the background (which we hope to finally conquer this Fall), but LOOK at that face. Not a day goes by that she doesn't melt me and her daddy's hearts.

Happy Monday!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Adventures of Little Miss and Miss Kitty

These are too good not to share. We seriously have the BEST cat in the world. She will put up with anything Wynston or Ava do to her. She's soo incredibly patient...or lazy. Not sure which one. :)

"Oh! Looky what I found! A lounging kitty!"

"Are you awake? Do you want to play?"

"Oh're sooo funny!"

"How about a kiss?"

"Tickle Tickle"

"Whoa! Baby Kitty Crash!"
Actually, Ava just lost her balance, lol.

Monday, September 9, 2013

I Have To Brag

I have to share something that Ava did last night that made me so proud, and really surprised us. She's at an age (almost 16 months) where her little brain is just growing so quickly, and sometimes she amazes us.

She and I were cuddling on the couch as she drank her bottle before bed. I started singing her "You are my sunshine" and before I could even finish the first verse, Ava pipes up with "HAPPY!". It's normal for her to say that after the line "You make me happy, when skies are grey". But last night she did it before I ever said those words. I realized, "she's associating words with songs without hearing those words yet!". Amazing. So I kept singing, and got to that particular verse, paused after "You make me ...." and she chimes in right on time with "HAPPY!", and I finished the song. We did this several times. She's just so darn smart. Love that kid. :)

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Then and Now

What a year a difference makes!

Little Miss, September 3 2012
Not so Little Miss, September 3 2013

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A Cute Little House for a Cute Little Miss

Look what we picked up this past weekend!! Our Little Miss loves it. I picked this guy up secondhand (brand new they are PRICEY!). After a good rinse off, this little house looks almost brand new. Today I ordered a few new parts (doorbell, phone, set of fresh stickers) direct from the manufacturer for just a few more dollars. It is the cutest little playhouse, and Ava is enjoying it so much already. I can't wait to watch her imagination run wild in her new cottage. :)