Monday, March 3, 2014

Accidental Cavegirl

I've decided to start chronicling our journey through food sensitivities and a modified paleo diet in another space so this page can remain dedicated to my diy projects and crafty things. That space is going to be for those who are interested in a new way of looking at food or who are struggling with food sensitivities in themselves or a family member. Baby B and I would love to have you check out our new digs at An Accidental Cavegirl but make sure to stay tuned here for me to finally get my act together and tell you about the projects I've been working on. I miss you guys!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Bean burgers, yum!

Sometimes you don't have everything you need to complete a recipe. Like the main ingredient. Sometimes this happens several times a week. You know, to some people. Certainly not me...

I had pinned a recipe for black bean burgers but my pin mysteriously disappeared so I ended up googling black bean burgers to find a recipe. It was less than 15 minutes to supper time, I already had tater tots in the oven, and my baby was screaming her head off so I choose the quickest one I could find. I went to the pantry where I the cans of beans seem to multiply daily and of course, not a single can of black beans to be found. But because I half-ass my meals like I do pretty much everything else, I soldiered on with some navy beans because they were the can in my hand at the time.

Now, I sort of followed the recipe I had looked up but altered it enough that I feel safe saying this is my very own recipe (ha! Almost like I know what I'm doing or something) and I'm going to share it with you because my 10 year old ate THREE patties. We ate them with forks and ketchup because we didn't have any bread or hamburger buns. We had hamburger buns but someone in this house doesn't realize that I only buy buns when I have a plan for them and always eats them before I can get to that meal. Also, not very good at laundry sorting. He makes me crazy. Any ways, here's my recipe.

1 can navy beans, rinsed and drained
1 can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
half a yellow onion
half a green pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 egg
1 tbsp chili powder (I used less b/c of the small ones)
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Frank's wing sauce (I'm obsessed with this stuff, use more if you like it hot)
1 cup panko

Preheat oven to 375F. In a medium bowl, mash the navy beans well with a fork. Add kidney beans and mash not quite as much (because they are harder and you are lazy). Whiz up the onion and green pepper in the food processor. Add them to the beans, throw in everything else and mix well. Form into patties (or balls that you toss on the pan and then smoosh) and bake on a baking sheet for 10 minutes per side. At the end you can broil for a few minutes to add a little color if you would like. This made 7 for me but I wasn't being careful about making evenly sized patties or trying to make them fit on a bun.

I think this would work with any kind of beans you have on hand. I thought about brushing them with egg to get some more color on the outside but then I didn't want to deviate quite that much so I didn't. Try it and let me know if it works or if it makes them gross and weird. This doesn't taste anything like a hamburger but my kids liked them. They added cheese and the 5 year threw some tots on top, which was genius! With the recipe as listed it was a little spicy but nothing they complained about so if you actually enjoy spicy food (I don't) you would want to up the heat factor.

Go forth and eat beans. Don't blame me if you end up accidentally giving your spouse the dutch oven effect.

Monday, January 6, 2014

6 weeks

Soooo, it's been awhile. We have a baby yo! A real live, cranky ass baby making our lives all kinds of difficult. She's beautiful and healthy and I feel horrible for complaining but this child is what one might call high needs. We're not sure if she has a food sensitivity like big sister W or if she's just not happy with her lot in life. Either way, we do a lot of bouncing and rocking and even more breastfeeding. That all leaves very little time for DIY and home renovation. But never fear! I still have two furniture builds to show off and we're hopefully going to start searching for our next house soon so that means I need to get my butt in gear and get this house ready to sell. I also have a giant hole in the wall that needs to get a bifold door installed so you can watch me struggle through that. But here is the reason for my radio silence.
 Her arrival neccesitated some room switching. We currently have three bedrooms for our four girls so someone has to share. Baby B is still sleeping in our room but I wanted to make all the transitions before her arrival so that the older girls could adjust without blaming this new kid for disrupting their lives.

It was decided that our five year old would share a room with our two year old and that the baby would have her own room but all the toys in the nursery are for everyone. All the girls spend a lot more time playing in there now than they ever did before, which is just par for the course with these contrary ladies. This room sharing meant mama needed to build some bunk beds. I'll get into that project a little more next time but it was my first major solo project and it's still standing so I'm pretty proud.

The girls are doing really well sharing a room but closet space is lacking a little. So of course mama thought 'I can fix that' and out came the Sawzall and crowbar and now there's a big hole in the wall. The projects just never end because I never finish one before starting another. I can't wait to share more pictures and projects with you soon!

But right now my thoughts are trending more towards food and babies and so shall this little blog of mine until Baby B is big enough to give me the time to work on my projects again. I'm itching to stain some cupboards and build some stools but I'm struggling to shower on a regular basis so extra things will have to wait. I'm off the watch Season 3 of Breaking Bad while the whole country flips out about being so frickin' cold. Ta!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Chachacha changes!

We've been working on a little project over here that has little to do with home improvement but a lot to do with why I haven't had the energy or ambition to write anything or do any home improvement lately.
Baby number 4 is due to arrive around November 19th and we're very excited. I hope that now that morning sickness has passed I can share a few pictures of what I have managed to do around here lately and then get working on some new projects. There is a bed to be built very soon before I get too big to want to haul around heavy boards. But first I really need to clean my house because my poor family has been living in filth the last few months while I laid around like a lump of uselessness. I'm not good at being pregnant or being in labor but we make such amazing children that we just couldn't stop at 3.

Thanks for not abandoning me during my lack of posting. I might do better. I'm not great at follow through so I make no promises. :)

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Crockpot magic

I have this habit of just throwing a bunch of stuff together for supper and then my whole family loves it and thinks it's delicious and I can't remember a single thing I used. It happens with pasta and roasts and chicken. Of course there are super supper fails too so I can't just depend on always throwing together something wonderful. So I'm going to try to record some of my expiraments here and maybe I'll even come back and tell you how they went and post a photo or two.

Today's supper is going to be a pork roast with mashed potatoes and lima beans. I took a pork shoulder picnic roast and rinsed it well and threw it in the crockpot. I mixed together 1 cup of water, about 1/4 cup soy sauce, about 4 Tbsp A1 steak sauce, 3 Tbsp red wine, some jarred roasted red peppers, and a small handful of sun dried tomatoes. I poured that all over the roast and set it to low where it will stay for about 8 hours.

I know that the soy sauce and A1 are a safe bet but I'm a little worried that the red peppers and tomatoes won't go in the direction I'm trying for. We'll see I guess. With a roast you can always cover it in BBQ sauce or ketchup if it isn't amazing and nobody will know the difference. I mean, that was totally your plan all along. BBQ sauce covers a multitude of sins and salt makes mistakes taste good.

What's for supper at your house? Do you even eat supper or is it dinner or something else? My dad eats breakfast, dinner, supper, and anything in between is called having a little lunch. I eat breakfast, lunch, supper, and snacks because most people understand what those words are supposed to mean and dinner is just too confusing.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Hydrate

I've made it my goal lately to drink a full 64 ounces of water every day. It is not unusual for me to go an entire day without having anything at all to drink so this is a HUGE change for me. I've been hounded my entire life by my dad to drink more water and now by my husband but a long string of UTIs has finally convinced me that I need to get serious about this.

The best tips I can give if you also struggle with staying hydrated is to buy a 32 oz bottle. Sort of like this (affiliate link is just to illustrate the type of bottle I mean, I got mine as a free giveaway at an Ag show).Nalgene 32 oz. Narrow Mouth Loop-Top Bottle BPA Free (Google Affiliate Ad) It makes it soooo much easier to remember how much water I've had to drink in a day. Very few people actually know how many ounces of water they drink because they use regular cups and glasses and then you lose track of how many times you've filled it. Most people don't really have to think about it too much because they have this affliction they call thirst. I don't seem to ever have that. I think I'm broken.

So yeah, making it idiot proof helps. Also a lot of Crystal Light and SO many trips to the bathroom.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

to my 16 year old self

Here's another post in my series on things I want my kids to know someday. My oldest daughter is going to be 10 this year and it's starting to become so very real to me that she will one day be more than a child. Someday she'll be friends with people who are doing drugs and having sex and *gasp* going to church. She's going to be introduced to things outside my realm of control and she's not going to take my word as the TRUTH anymore. Shit is too real y'all.

Tens things I would love to tell my 16 year old self (that she wouldn't even hear because she'd be too busy doing her own misguided thing)
1. You are beautiful! You do not need to make boys want you because they already do and you are trying too hard and attracting the wrong ones.
2. You will one day miss all of this. You will long for the freedom of your little red car and driving down dirt roads to go to the swimming spots and walking outside at 3 am in the summer and flirting with new boys and going home to a place you are loved and belong and don't have to clean.
3. Your parents don't know what the hell to do and could probably use some reassurance that you're going to be just fine. They think you're going to die in a gutter after a lifetime of bad choices. They are afraid for you.
4. You're doing okay kid. You are a good friend and a good employee and a good student. You work hard for your grades and your money.
5. If he doesn't take you on a real date, to a place in public where you spend time together, maybe even have a meal or see a movie, you are not 'together' and he is not worth your time. If he can't afford to take you out he should make you dinner or rent a movie and make popcorn.
6. Dream big! MIT is not out of your reach if you truly work towards it. Acting is not an impossible dream and will someday happen for you. You have all the gifts you need to be amazing at life, just believe.
7. Thank people more. Tell people you love them and thank them for spending time on you. Your physics teacher deserves to be told how much he impacted your life. Your brothers could stand a thank you for the times they go out of the way to be awesome. So many people do so many things for you and everyone around you and they don't hear it enough.
8. Exercise. Start now because it will be harder to start later.
9. Pick your friends better. If they don't take care of themselves (mentally, physically, educationally) they won't take care of you.
10. Talk to everyone! People are so interesting and you will need the practice making new friends. Make sure you spend less time talking and more listening. You can find something to like about everyone but don't waste your time with those who are toxic to you. If being around someone puts you in a bad mood, walk away.

I'm going to try to take a few pictures around here so we can get back to some actual home improvement type stuff. I haven't been able to do too many big things until recently because we've been super broke but I'm getting back on the wagon train.