The Family Practice

family life is a practice in balance and flow

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The Weekend Recap

My Friday morning started out a little unusual because Nick had stayed the night in Salt Lake City and I needed to pick him up at the train station after dropping the boys off at school in order to get him to work on time. It wasn’t a big deal, by any means, but it was nice to have a little time with him in the morning since I didn’t get to see him at all the day before.

I had grand plans of going to body pump after dropping him off, but my brain was a million places but the gym. I’m in a super weird ADD zone right now. I feel like all summer I was stuck in this “just get it done” phase and had so little time to think. Now that my time is freed up again, my brain is spilling over with ideas– not all of them good mind you. Processing through the thoughts and bouncing from idea to idea, it’s time consuming in a quiet, looks-like-nothing-is-happening kind of a way. I’m sure a trip to the gym during those times is probably the best thing for me so I’m sorry to admit that I didn’t make it up there.

Instead, I worked from home for a bit and then went to my only meeting for the day, which went well and got my brain spinning even more. Back at home I needed to bust through some actual “get it done” work and was having a really hard time just forcing myself to quiet my brain and focus in on what needed to be done. As I started crossing things off my list I got a text reminder from a friend about our afternoon plans.

I had completely forgotten about a girl date I had set with some friends to go see Gone Girl, deliberately set for during the day so we could go without having to worry about childcare or anything else. Since Friday is typically my no meetings, work from home, and prep for the following week day, I had made the movie plan thinking no big deal. I might have skipped my gym-date-brain-clean-out but I’m glad that I didn’t skip my movie date with the girls.

Post-movie, I checked my phone and had a ton of missed calls, emails and everything else – things I don’t think I would have handled well if I had answered in real time. Missing the calls and emails gave me some time to think about my responses and to realize that not everything is the pressing emergency people like to pitch it as. Some things can wait.

Over the last several months I gave way too much of myself, and made myself way to available to way too many people. Missing a few phone calls, it honestly feels freeing.

And PS, the movie was really good.

The rest of the day was dedicated to family time with the kids, including a carnival at Mackenzie’s school.

Saturday

Saturday morning we took the boys to yoga again. This time Nick was able to join us. Spencer rode his bike, Mack rode his scooter, and Nick and I walked with them down to the studio on 25th Street. It was a nice class and I think Spencer is getting the hang of it a bit more. He does the breathing following the teacher’s instructions and even though he only did two of the poses on his own, he likes being on the mat with me. I also know he’s paying more attention than it sometimes seems because he’ll show me the poses at home and talk about things the instructor said during the class. I honestly think he’s shy – I know, Spencer and “shy” don’t belong in a sentence together but I think maybe now they do.

(Mack is up front and center, Spencer’s on my lap J )

Back at home I put together a yummy lunch for us, using the time to perfect one of my recipe development projects. I’ll post a link to the recipe as soon as it’s posted on the client’s site.

(Autumn Skillet Dinner with Pork and Seasoned Apples)

Then it was time for the weekend errand round up: groceries, household items, a few things for the boys, etc. Of course, a trip to Red Box was also included and that meant an at-home-movie-night was in order.

But first, cleaning! I’ve wanted to clean the carpets upstairs for well over a month now and this was the weekend to do it. We have a carpet cleaner that we bought nearly ten years ago and is still going strong. It was maybe sixty bucks and honestly worth every penny. We still get the carpets professionally cleaned every so often, but we’ll do the DIY version a few times a year and that really keeps the carpet a lot nicer and fresh smelling.

This time, instead of using the store bought cleaning solution, I made my own following a recipe from Surviving the Stores. I was curious as to how well it would actually clean because we had a real issue in the upstairs bedroom. Our little pup has been a devious mess maker over the summer and has chosen the boys bedroom as her special place to do her business. She’s totally house trained but if she sleeps in their room, she’ll get up in the night and go potty in the exact same corner each time. It drives me insane. Not only because it’s super gross but because when it happens during the night that means it sits there until morning and gets extra to soak in a stink up the place. Awesome. This carpet cleaning recipe totally pulled up the stains, dealt with the smell and wasn’t sticky on the carpet afterwards like some other solutions are. I cleaned their whole room but I put an extra focus on the puppy pee corner. Fricking dog. At least we were able to clean it and this solution worked really well.

But also, she’s not allowed to sleep up there anymore.

After spending a couple hours on a cleaning spree around the house, I was more than hungry. I threw together a red curry soup and we watched our red box movie. One was great and one was horrendously awful. Which was which?

The movie, Edge of Tomorrow, was freaking stupid. Of course, Nick loved it and wants to watch it again. I don’t get it. Even the positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes are not nice things, they write that it’s not great and gets stale but then give it high marks. That’s what spending a lot of money does folks. I kid you not, watching this was like sitting down to watch Nick play Halo for a couple of hours – not my idea of a good time, thank you very much.

The soup was freaking incredible. It was also shockingly easy to make. Recipe posted below.

Sunday

Sunday morning I enjoyed coffee in bed, cuddles with Spencer-magoo and then morning yoga at Imagine Jefferson. That yoga class was just what I needed – not just physically but mentally as well; more on that in a separate post.

But check out this great photo of our class doing the “crow” pose:

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It’s a murder……………………………. of crows! This hand asana, or pose, is great this time of year as it requires you to get out of your head and away from your to do list or else you end up falling on your noggin! Once you find your mind empty, you can then find your drishti, or focus which is finding something about 8-12 inches away on the floor, and focusing your empty mind at that location to maintain balance. You’ll end up being able to hold this pose much longer while in drishti- enough time that it’ll be your arms needing a break rather then you falling out of the pose. Day 8 for #WildYogiCrew for the animal loving hosts hosts

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After yoga, I came home for Sunday Night Football which apparently starts at 11am. So, forget the “night” part.

We had some friends over and a smorgasbord of steak, bbq chicken, and leftover curry soup J Wanna make it for yourself?

Red Curry Soup with Rice Sticks (adapted from “Fiery Tofu and Coconut Curry Soup” in Cooking Light a few years ago)

Prep Time: 2 minutes Cook Time: 35 minutes Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • ¼ Cup Water
  • 2 tsp Tandoori Masala Seasoning
  • 1 tsp Curry
  • 4 tsp Chili Garlic Paste
  • 1 Tbsp Brown Sugar
  • 2 Cans (13.5 ounce) Coconut Milk
  • 2 ½ Cups Vegetable Broth
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 2 Tbsp Soy Sauce, reduced sodium
  • 3 Carrots, thin sliced
  • 1 pkg Rice Sticks

Method:

  • Heat oil and garlic over medium heat until lightly browned.
  • Add water, tandoori masala mix, curry, chili garlic paste and brown sugar. Stir over heat until a sticky paste is formed.
  • Add coconut milk, vegetable broth, lime juice and soy sauce. Stir well. Bring to a boil.
  • Add carrot. Reduce heat and cover. Simmer for 20-25 minutes until carrots are just starting to soften.
  • Add rice sticks. Cover again and simmer an additional 7-10 minutes until noodles are soft.
  • Garnish with chopped chives, optional.

(mine)

(theirs)

I could obviously use some food-photography skills but I think mine turned out pretty dang great. I hope you’ll try it!

I just love playing around with recipes to make them my own. It’s about the only way I can externally express my creativity. I can’t paint, draw or do any sort of art to save my life – but I can cook! And that counts for something!

I’m starting my week off with a meeting this morning to go over the coming Witchstock event and then a website review meeting for one of my clients. I plan on getting a few miles in on the pavement during “lunch hour” and then working from home on a few writing projects that need to be submitted before the week is out.

And if I can find somewhere in town that carries Israeli Couscous (pearl couscous), I’ll be making this for dinner tonight. Otherwise, it’s on hold ’til I venture down to SLC for a visit to Trader Joes.

I have two questions of the day today! 1) Do you trust movie reviews? 2) Are you artistic in a medium that isn’t typically considered “art”?

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Sage English Muffins

*Recipe provided by Mikaela of Indie Ogden as part of our Eat Local Challenge*

Sage English Muffins with Canyon Meadows Ranch Maple Breakfast Pork

Make your own English muffins? Am I crazy? Maybe, but isn’t it fun to be a bit crazy sometimes? 
I woke up this morning with an intense craving for English muffins and with no English muffins in sight I was determined to make my own. Being the rebellious person that I am, I knew I couldn’t just follow a recipe so I put my own little spin on this foolproof  one:http://honestcooking.com/homemade-english-muffins-recipe/.
Follow this recipe  and sub 1 tbsp of butter for bacon grease ( just trust me on this one) and add a tbsp of sage powder or dried sage leaves crushed into small bits.

Open your Maple breakfast pork form it into balls and press them into a skillet with a spatula until they are flattened into patties. Cover and let cook for about 10 minutes on each side. 
Now for the egg. I want to let you all in on a little secret for making the PERFECT breakfast egg…water. Heat a skillet and then crack your egg into the skillet, add 1 tbsp of water and cover. The water will create steam that cooks your egg perfectly on top in no time as well as keeping it from sticking to the pan.

Add some beehive cheese, heirloom tomato and local butter on your English muffin and enjoy! If you are feeling a bit adventurous, bake slices of sweet potato and add a couple slices to your breakfast sammy, it’s divine.

pork pork2

Thanks Mikaela! We have really enjoyed having you share your recipes here and we’re sad to say this is the final recipe exchange from the Eat Local Challenge.

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Stuffed Poblano Peppers

*Recipe provided by Mikaela of Indie Ogden as part of our Eat Local Challenge*

poblano2Mikaela says: “I used corn, jalapeno, tomato, onion and garlic from the box but everything else is from the Mexican market.” She’s referring to Ranch Market which is right here in our neighborhood and features many made-in-house treats as well as in-season produce. If you’re a local reader, I recommend going to Ranch as well – or if you’re in another area to look for a locally owned market of similar variety.

~Enjoy~

What you need:

  • 5 large poblano peppers
  • 1 red pepper
  • corn from 1 large ear of corn of from 2 small
  • 1/2 jalapeno pepper
  • 1 c cooked black beans
  • 2 cups cooked white or brown rice
  • shredded  queso Oaxaca or mozerella cheese 
  • 3 large tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • cumin, smoked paprika
  • Salt to taste

How to make it:

  • Put 4 of the poblanos in the broiler, turning them every few minutes until the skin begins to bubble and peel away.
  • Quickly place the poblanos into a plastic bag and tie off, lay a towel over top.
  • Chop last poblano, red pepper, onion, 1 clove of garlic and toss into a skillet, saute until onion is translucent
  • Add cooked rice and beans and mix in fresh corn
  • Add a bit of cumin and salt to taste
  • In a blender add tomatoes, jalapeno to taste depending on how spicy you like food, 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tsp cumin and salt to taste. poblano5
  • Place tomato mixture into a sauce pan with tomato paste and simmer for just a few minutes to set the flavor. 
  • Remove poblanos from plastic bag and peel off outer layer of skin
  • Cut a slit into the pepper and remove seeds, don’t worry this is not a hot pepper so you can use your hands
  • Put a light layer of the tomato puree on the bottom of a baking dish poblano4
  • Stuff poblanos full of rice and beans mix and place in baking dish
  • Stuff top of peppers with cheese
  • Bake at 350 until cheese is bubbling and brown on the edges
  • Serve with a but of tomato puree on the plate and poblano on top.
  • You can also add cilantro on top for extra flavor

 poblano3

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Overstuffed Pattypan Squash

*Recipe provided by Mikaela of Indie Ogden as part of our Eat Local Challenge*

Mikaela says: “I love this recipe! It’s so easy and quick to make and you can use any veggies you have in the fridge.  You can also wrap them up in foil and take it camping and cook it at your site and have a picnic once it’s cooked.”

pattypanOverstuffed Pattypan Squash

What you need:

  • 3 med-large pattypan (softball size)
  • 2 sausages, I used Canyon Meadow dried tomato and basil beef sausage
  • 1/2 C grated cheese plus a handful extra, I used Beehive Cheese, Teahive
  • Veggies of choice, I used corn from 1 corn on the cob, 1 green pepper, 1 large heirloom tomato, 2 cloves of garlic and 1/2 a white onion
  • Spices: dried or fresh basil and oregano, salt and pepper to taste

How to make it

  • Preheat oven to 350
  • If your pattypan does not stand up on  it’s own, cut the bottom to make a flat surface
  • Cut an incision on the top of the patty pan diagonally towards the middle pattypanscoop
  • Using a spoon, pop out the top and scoop out all the seeds inside
  • Continue spooning the inside to make a nice bowl, careful not to  go too far down and break the bottom.
  • Place pattypan on a baking sheet and drizzle with salt and olive oil, place in the oven and bake for 10 minutes
  • While pattypan is baking, boil sausage if it is not precookedpattypanmix
  • Chop veggies and sausage and add to a bowl with the spices and cheese
  • Stuff the pattypan with the mixture  until there is an overflowing mound on top
  • top with extra cheese
  • bake for 20 minutes or until brown on edges and when poked with a fork, the patty pan is soft all the way through    
  •  

    pattypantoppattypan2

Thanks Mikaela! We can’t wait to try this out. And it just so happens that we’ll likely be going camping this weekend so we’ll have to try out the foil version.

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Kale w/Peach Mustard Vinaigrette

*Recipe provided by Mikaela of Indie Ogden as part of our Eat Local Challenge*

Peach Mustard Dressing  

What you need

  • 3 peaches
  • 2 bunches of kale
  • 1 red onion
  • 3 tbsp mustard
  • 1/4 c apple cider vinegar
  • 3 heaping tablespoons of honey
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • olive oil
  • salt

How to make it

  • remove kale from stems, chop into small pieces and put into a bowl
  • drizzle kale with olive oil and massage, place in the fridge
  • In a blender add 1/2 ed onion, clove of garlic, honey, 2 peaches, mustard, vinegar and 1 tsp salt
  • Puree, add more honey as needed until  it’s desired flavor
  • top kale with  remaining peach, red onion and drizzle with vinaigrette

Kale Peach Salade