Monday, November 01, 2010

Quote This!

The challenge in life is not about being perfect, but about being whole.
- Jane Fonda

This really just hit a note with me, how much of our energy do we waste chasing being some version of perfection. If more people spend half of that energy making themselves whole this world would be a much happier and peaceful place.

Flower car lady - Have a happy and colorful day

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

I am

I am – immersed in sewing. I had sort of put it on the back burner and for some reason its been calling my name recently. I made a cute little itty-bitty dress for a 3 year old and next I am making Palazzo pants for myself. Cant wait to finish and wear them.

I am thinking – about the budget cuts that our school district is facing and how there are no GOOD solutions to heavy problems like this. Its unfortunate that the economic effects are tricking down and threatening to cut services in our kids schools, teachers, sports clubs all the things that make up an enriching environment have to be trimmed to bare minimum given the lack of funding.

I am feeling - weird because today I had to help my teen pick out courses for HIGH School . I feel like I just blinked and my baby is in high school. Where have the years gone.

I am looking outside my window – and I see grey skies and rain drops. Looking forward to the sun shining later in the week.

I am readingThe Art of Racing in the Rain: A Novel by Garth Stein. Its written from the perspective of a dog and is about his race car driver and is sort of about how to deal with life when it rains.

Flower car lady - Have a happy and colorful day

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

I've been sort of trying to make the shift towards healthier food choices that I would like to eat without feeling like I am on a diet. When I think of diet food I think of food that leaves your taste buds and stomach unsatisfied. With a attempt to reverse that I am focused on experimenting a few dishes that are made with all natural healthy ingredients that taste amazing and just happen to good for you.
My first attempt is at Tomato basil soup, our local grocery store sells this fresh in their soup selection and its heavenly but with every bite you can taste the calories so I was looking to make a home made version of the same.
A quick google search later I settled on a version by Barefoot Contessa Roasted Tomato Basil soup ,click on link for the original recipe that was the inspiration for this dish.
If you happen to have a crock pot then use it like I did to keep the soup brewing without having to watch it all the time. If you don't have slow cooker just simmer the soup for 30 minutes on the stove top.

What you need to pick up from the grocery -
8-10 Plum Tomatoes, 1 bunch of basil, 28oz can of plum tomatoes, 1quart chicken stock (home made is great)

What you need from your pantry -
6 cloves of garlic, red pepper flakes , olive oil, butter, salt & pepper, (optional -Agave syrup,milk)

1) Cut plum tomatoes in half, garlic cloves in half place in roasting pan and drizzle with 2 tsp olive oil. Convection roast at 375 for 40 minutes.

2) Saute onions and chopped garlic in olive oil and butter . Add red pepper flakes.

3) Add 28oz can of whole peeled plum tomatoes and chopped basil into onion mixture. Season with salt and pepper

4) Transfer the onion/tomato mixture , roasted tomatoes and chicken stock into the crock pot. Let the whole thing simmer on low setting, I set it for 4 hours.

5) Use immersion blender and puree the soup until its finer. As a final extra step I passed the whole chunky soup thru a course food mill to give a soup an much smoother consistency.

When the soup was done it was a little too acidic for my taste so I added 1/4 cup of milk and a tsp of Agave syrup ( substitute sugar if you don't have that) and heat on low until ready to eat. Serve with a garnish of basil, 3-4 croutons and optional dash of grated cheese.

Enjoy on a cold rainy day with the ones you love. If you have any other slow cooker or healthy tasty recipes feel free to share .

Flower car lady - Have a happy and colorful day

Friday, February 19, 2010

Five Word Fridays

Thank God Its Finally FRIDAY !

Flower car lady - Have a happy and colorful day

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

I am

I am – trying to figure out what is wrong with my back. I seemed to have injured it working out and now everything I do hurts. Sitting here trying to type on the computer hurts the worst. I really must go and lay down to rest it. This back injury is really literally becoming a pain in my a**.

I am thinking – about how to achieve a date night with my hubby . We have both been so busy in our everyday chores ( job/kids) that we have not taken the time out to just connect with each other. This week that’s my goal. Date night with Hubby.

I am looking outside my window – and I see sunny skies and a thinking about the huge snow forecast we have for the northeast tomorrow. All of these clear evergreens will be dressed in 10-18 inches of snow if they are right.

I am reading – two books by comedian Chelsea Handler . One I just started is called Are You There, Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea . I just finished her other funny book called My Horizontal Life: A Collection of One-Night Stands which is basically a collection of information about ALL her one night stands. Funny easy read. I would rate it 2/5 its an OK read if you are looking for something easy to make you chuckle . Certainly not deep reading but I am just in the mood for silly reading. The next one I have lined up to read is Don't Make a Black Woman Take Off Her Earrings- by Tyler Perry's Madea. Can you see a pattern here, I am taking a break from serious reading here LOL.

Flower car lady - Have a happy and colorful day

Monday, February 08, 2010

My 7 Cub scouts just crossed over to Boy Scouts

This past weekend 7 of my (technically only one is really mine) boys graduated from being cub scouts to boy scouts. We had a Blue and Gold celebration dinner and a crossing over ceremony al of which was a wonderful experience. They actually have a bridge that the scouts physically cross over symbolizing the end of one path and the beginning of another (Can you hear me dabbing at my tears). This year is an extra special year as it’s the 100th anniversary of Scouting.
I have been involved in scouting for about 9 years now since my oldest became a tiger cub. I led his dean and transitioned them to boys scouts a few years ago. He continues to remain pretty active in his troop and loving every minute of it. Just last weekend he was out at a wilderness survival camp sleeping OUTSIDE in 20 degrees with nothing but a tent and a campfire Brrrr.

Being a Den leader means putting in a lot of effort in making sure that the boys are getting the most of what they can from this wonderful program. Trying to lead a Den of 7 boys with bundles of energy has its rewards and its challenges. Today I turned over yet another batch of scouts to the BSA and its sort of bitter sweet. It’s been 6 years of spending an hour or two with them twice a month coming up with activities to do, things to explore and fun to have. I have watched most of them transform from the little cubs that they were when they started in 1st grade into these wonderful young men that they have morphed into. I sort of feel like the mama bear that has to let her grown cubs move on into the woods and hope that I have given them enough to survive on their own two feet.

Now here they are poised to move into Middle school and I am so proud of their accomplishments and cherish all the wonderful memories of the journey to getting here. In a few years they will perhaps have moved on and barely remember any of their early scouting days. I however will always look back fondly on all our adventures and always remember them just as they are today. I hope they all continue to stay with the Boy Scouts of America organization and make it to the rank of Eagle. I wish them all the best and hope that in some small way have made a difference in their lives for the better.

2 down 1 to go.

So two of my cubs are grown and made the transition so far. I still have one little cub left who has 2 more years to go before he makes the transition to Boy scouts and I am planning on enjoying every moment of him while he is still a cub. Its neat to see him following the footsteps of his older brother. Startling to see realize how fast he is progressing and leaping towards the finish line.

I already have one teen hanging around with attitude, another poised to be “tween” this year so I know I need to enjoy the “baby cub” while there is still time. I am afraid to blink cause before I know it I’ll have a house with 3 teenage boys walking around. Yikes !

Flower car lady - Have a happy and colorful day

Friday, February 05, 2010

Five Word Fridays

Dreaming of vacation with hubby.

Flower car lady - Have a happy and colorful day