Friday, November 22, 2013

Recipes, News, Stores and more... 7 Quick Takes

7 quick takes sm1 Your 7 Quick Takes Toolkit!

1.


Whew. What a week. We are flying on through, as usual. First things first, immunity is back up for grabs HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MARK! Yesterday, hubby turned 34. And now you know that we're old and clearly watch too much Survivor.
Lucy gets her photo op, too
Also, a huge shout out to my awesome guy who fixed the formatting issues I was having. Something about adding CSS...I don't speak tech, so no clue here, but thank you!

2.

I'd love to see a Myers Briggs test on cooks versus bakers. Cooks have large cushions when it comes to ingredient quantities. Bakers, well, that's more like kitchen chemistry. It needs to be precise. I'm an INFP and I'm not a baker. All that measuring? Boring, and too much clean up. I'm definitely a cook. I add, I add more, I adjust, I'm anything but precise. It's all about practice. You start with recipes and get to know look, feel, texture and then when you've got that down, you just start throwing things together on your own.

3.

Tuesday, What's for Dinner? 

...was supposed to feature what we had for dinner on Monday, which means I'm writing Tuesday's post about Monday's dinner on Friday. Ok...
  • Mashed potatoes that taste like the real deal.
- Red Skin potatoes, skins on, diced and boiled in heavily-salted water. Drain.
- Add coconut oil, coconut milk (from a box not a can) a generous amount of salt and a sprinkle of pepper.
- Mash to your heart's content.
  • Leftover BBQ pork (garlic-free).
  • Pumpkin Custard for dessert. Allergen free! (unless you have an egg yolk allergy)
- One small can of pumpkin, some coconut oil, coconut milk (again, from a box), whatever spices suit you. I used cinnamon and vanilla, a pinch of salt, however much brown sugar you desire, and 2 egg yolks rinsed.
- Mix
- Pour into a greased casserole dish.
- Heat the oven to 400
- Place loaf pan filled with boiling water on the lower oven rack
- Put the custard on the middle rack, and bake for 30 or 40 minutes until the top is set.

4.

Homeschool Wednesday

Big news in the Archibald home!  Come January, Iain will be enrolled in Minnesota Virtual Academy. We heard some good things from multiple families and, being newbies to the world of homeschooling, we like the idea of the structure it provides, and free materials. It's an online public charter school, so it's all free. They mail you everything you need: books, materials, a computer, etc. and then your student does a mixture of online and book work, with a teacher assigned to help as needed.

Additionally, since Lydia will be starting Kindergarten in the Fall, I like the idea of trying it with Iain for a semester before I have two students to juggle. If it works for us, great! If it's a terrible fit, we can make it through until the end of the school year and drop it. 

5.

With that in mind, it was with less fear and trepidation for my bank account that I went to visit a store called Lakeshore Learning Store. Ohmygoodness. This store is a dreamcometrue nightmare. Everything you ever wanted as a homeschooling mom, a mom in general, or just a person who likes things and kid's crafts, or who hates things and crafts, but enjoys looking at them. So fun. Example: 29 cents per linear foot for self-service lamination. I may begin laminating everything my children do. Watch out world. Good thing I'm not crafty 'cause then we'd really be in trouble!

I limited myself to spending $20 and managed to keep it under $15, leaving with a pad of paint-with-water Melissa and Doug water color pictures for my kiddos who ask to paint at least once a week and have heard me say "yes" about three times ever, and these awesome twist-up crayons, desperately needed here in the land of break-one-break-all crayondom. 

I'll add that while this store is awesome eye-candy, it is a bit tough on the wallet. If you're on a tight budget and looking for similar items, other places to look are Oriental Trading or Dollar Tree.

6.

Speaking of stores, Sam's Club or Costco?
I've had a Sam's membership for years. My Sam's shopping is down to a science. I know exactly what I need, where to find it, how much it costs, how long it will last. I could go on. So, here's the problem: I'm bored. Yeah, I know, it's grocery shopping; you don't get much more boring than that. But when there's a Costco not too much farther away, perhaps it's time to mix things up a bit? 

Since I happened to be in the neighborhood, visiting the Lakeshore Learning Store, I figured I'd peek around in Costco. I felt like a spy in enemy territory (Preview Pass in hand) writing down prices for the things I might buy. In the end, Costco looks a bit pricier. But they also have things that I would buy that Sam's doesn't carry: Gluten-free flour, Rice milk, Quinoa... 

Help a girl out. Costco or Sam's?

7.

And, just for fun
Written by Iain. Translation: Annie I really love you

3 comments:

Julie@teachinggoodeaters said...

I have yet to commit the time to take the Myers Briggs test… Jen mentioned it on Conversion Diary, I clicked on it, saw what was involved, said, "I'll do that later," and never returned. And that, pretty much sums me up. I think there should be a note at the top that says, "If taking this test is too overwhelming for you, then your personality type is…." Anyways, your baking vs. cooking analysis made me think of two things… First, my grandma who was a wonderful cook, bu,t other than her Rum cake, did not bake. Secondly, every time I measure an ingredient, I think of my home ec. teacher who put the fear of God in us whenever we measured. She led us to believe that if we didn't measure off our ingredients precisely, the entire recipe would be a disaster. She never once made clear that this was much more important (though, I've found, not nearly as important as she led us to believe) for baking than for cooking. It has only been in the past few years that I have learned to loosen up, throw caution to the wind and forgo the measuring spoons!

Stephanie@afewbeadsshort.com said...

Costco. Definitely Costco. You'll learn they carry LOTS of things you don't even know you need that you can't live without. The savings I get on goat cheese alone makes the membership worth it.
Cooking and baking is a toss up for me, which probably means that I'm not really great at either of them. Fortunately, no one's complaining.

Susanna Spencer said...

I am INFJ, and I enjoy both cooking and baking, but would rather bake than bone a duck... Does that have any meaning in it?