Sunday, February 28, 2010

Old Timey.


I have come into possession of one of my grandfather's radios. It works great! And it looks awesome in our vintage-y bedroom.


I have no idea how old it is. 1940s? I'd love to find out, but there's no date on the radio itself. Silvertone was made by Sears & Roebuck.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Dog Olympics


They won a silver medal in Synchronized Sleeping in the 2010 Dog Olympics.



This is the aftermath of last night's windstorm. Mike drove home from work last night during the worst of it. Trees falling on power lines and catching on fire, a crushed car trunk, fun things like that. I went to check on the chickens and found the scene above - the coop rolled when the tarp covering the wire run was used as a sail, pretty much. With Mike holding a flashlight, I was able to rush them inside one at a time, into a dog cage I set up in the kitchen. We finally got power back at about 5:30 AM - earlier than I expected, honestly.


They made a good amount of noise this morning, as well as copious amounts of poop. The coop was easy to put back together and they're back where they belong, but I've still got some cleaning up to do, for sure. Gross.

Thursday, February 25, 2010



Here are a couple of pictures from Nathan's room. This is one of Nathan's favorite toys, a birthday gift from one of his best buds, Paloma. Last week, he was trying to fit the clown's head back on the wooden peg and he couldn't do it, so he flung it on the floor in a fit of anger. Temper tantrums are just on the horizon. SIGH.


This is the crib I found for $35 on Craigslist. It's by far the cutest crib I've ever seen. I looked for months, and no cribs I found in any stores jumped out at me. I saw this one and drove to Weston and back to grab it.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Gardening, 2010 Edition

Last year was my first foray into gardening. Previously, I had killed every plant I touched. Including a cactus. I threw together a quick 8x8 plot with a raised bed, and planted stuff. I was a total novice, and I’m surprised anything sprouted at all. Last year we went with:




Mustard Greens

Cherry Tomatoes

Habanero Peppers


Green Beans.

This year, we are going to expand the garden into the side yard which was recently dug up. I’m going to attempt to add radishes, carrots, pumpkins, butternut squash, and regular tomatoes instead of cherries.

One of the many things I enjoy about having a child is that it forces me to eat healthier because I feed him healthy food. My last trip to the grocery store was 75% fresh fruits and vegetables, plus wheat bread, a whole chicken, and milk. So I’m looking forward to this growing season to see what I can come up with.

Monday, February 22, 2010

en garde.


Preparing for a lucrative fencing career, I imagine.

Sunday, February 21, 2010



I’m in the midst of cleaning up Nathan’s room so I can take pictures. I’ll post a whole nursery tour when I’m done.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

*drags blanket*

Bea gets comfy on the living room floor. She especially likes dragging blankets around and repositioning them as she sees fit.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Oven-Toasted Tortilla Chips

Tonight was Mexican night. Mike made refried beans from scratch, which naturally means that as of this moment the sink is teetering with pots and pans, waiting for me. Nay, beckoning for me.

Mike asked me to run around the corner to the grocery store for tortilla chips, but it was cold out and I didn’t want to spend money, nor did I really crave the super saltiness of bagged chips, so I offered to try my hand at cooking some up myself.

All I did was use a pizza slicer to cut a few tortillas up into 6 slices each, brushed olive oil on top, then sprinkled on some sea salt and a cilantro lime spice mix we had. In less then 10 minutes (at around 375f), we had some decent oven-toasted chips, for a fraction of the price.

Mike behind the wheel.



Playing with my new digital camera - didn’t want Nathan’s entire childhood shot by cameraphone. We were at Whole Foods in Swampscott waiting for Mike to pick up his check.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

bang bang.

This is the face of a future ladykiller. (Thanks for taking cute pictures of my kid, Christa!)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Today was spent in a few of Gloucester’s thrift shops. We picked up four of these vintage die cast trucks for Nathan at Second Glance for $.25 each. All are stamped 1968-1970, made in the USA. Mike had similar ones as a kid, and I vaguely remember also playing with ones just like that at my grandparents’ house (likely handed down from my parents’ generation).


I’m currently sitting at the kitchen table doing my statistics homework for my evening class tonight. Nathan’s drinking apple cider and eating grapes and goldfish crackers in his highchair. I’m hardboiling some eggs and making chicken stock in the pressure cooker.

This is the view from the kitchen window. I’m struggling to find something in life I’m dissatisfied with. Aside from my lack of hubcaps.

Every Friday morning I walk 2 1/2 blocks downtown with Nathan to a baby swim class at the YMCA. This week was boat safety week, so the instructor put a tiny lifejacket on Nathan and we got to ride around the pool in an inflatable raft. That event probably ranked pretty high on my “stupidest looking things I’ve ever done” list. Nathan, predictably, thought it was MASSIVE FUN TIMES.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


I believe I can scientifically prove that mandarin oranges are the tastiest fruit in existence.

Monday, February 15, 2010

French Onion Soup

I haven’t attempted to make French Onion Soup in years. During my single days, I tried a few times, but I was much less skilled and could never caramelize onions without screwing up. Now that I have more ninja cooking skills, I wanted to try again. It cost about $7, including the 1/2 lb swiss cheese to go on top.

5 large yellow onions

2 cloves of garlic, minced

7 cups beef stock, 1 cup chicken stock (or you can use all beef)

3/4 cup white wine

1/4 teaspoon thyme

1 bay leaf

Start by carmelizing the onions. Sautee them in olive oil in the pot you want to make the soup in. I used a large enamelized cast iron dutch oven. Keep the heat on medium high for 1/2 hour or so (stir them a lot!), add maybe a teaspoon of sugar 10 minutes in to help caramelize them. After they’re nice and brown, throw in the minced garlic.

At this point, add in the wine to deglaze the pan. Then, add the stock, thyme, and bay leaf. Simmer everything for 45 minutes or so. I ground a little pepper in at the end for taste.

To make the topping, I put the oven on broil, ladled out a bowl of soup, and added a piece of scali bread. It’s Italian bread, we had a whole loaf lying around. You can buy French bread if you want. On top of that, I put two slices of swiss. I placed the bowl on top of a cookie sheet and broiled just long enough to brown the cheese a bit. Make sure your bowl can handle the heat! I kind of winged it with a cheap IKEA bowl.

So not bad, you can get 6 or so servings out of $7-8 in supplies. I’m not counting the price of things like thyme, bay leaves, or the minuscule amount of garlic.

Oh yeah, and find that bay leaf and remove it. I always forget this part until it’s looming on my spoon.


Bea’s transition into our household is going seamlessly. I discovered today that I could walk both dogs while pushing the baby carriage. Bea’s a little nervous around heavy trucks, but she did just fine. We hung out in the graveyard behind the house for awhile (there’s a lot of empty space, and dogs are allowed).