Friday, July 22, 2011

Five Things

I wish I could say that fun things were keeping me away from the blog this week.  I wish I could say I'd been in Chicago playing with this beautiful baby all week.  Unfortunately, I will say that I've been working all week and haven't had the time to post the pictures from my all-too-short Chicago visit.  There are quite a few of this little munchkin.  (But there are also quite a few where I am holding her and you can see the fear in her eyes.)

Oh popcorn, how I love thee.  Did you know that microwave popcorn bags are a bit of a hoax?  Popcorn just pops without being in that slightly metal-laced bag (which makes no sense but that's what I always assumed it was)!  You can pop it in a plain paper bag, or you can do what we do, which is pop it in a large ceramic serving bowl and just put a plate on top as the lid.  It takes a long time to pop - maybe 6 minutes - and the bowl will be VERY hot when you are done, but you have perfectly popped popcorn for a fraction of the cost of the bags.  We spray canola oil spray on it and then sprinkle kosher salt (if you're John) or sugar (if you're me) to season it.  Or feel free to melt some butter over top, sprinkle with Parmesan, or top with cayenne pepper.  I highly recommend you try this if you are a popcorn lover!

I resisted for quite some time, and I've now caved.  Everyone was raving about the new Heidi Swanson cookbook, and I snagged myself a copy last week on Amazon.  This has been my nighttime reading lately, so that I can dream of millet muffins and baked oatmeal (I just finished the breakfast chapter, obviously).  It is one of the most beautiful and inspiring cookbooks I've ever seen.  The recipes are vegetarian and focused on using healthier grains and sweeteners.  I am eager to give the recipes a whirl to see if they taste as amazing as they look.

Ugh, spice shelf, I am not very proud of you.  It isn't pretty, but it does the job.  Maybe one day I'll put them all in nice jars that are hand-labeled, but for now they are a mish-mash of different bottles of all shapes and sizes.  What I am grateful for however, is this spice step that allows my spices to be much more visible than they would be all jumbled in a corner.  My mom took me to the store to buy one a couple years back when she saw my horrid spice display.  I can't even imagine how mad this spot would look without it.

Harper has had a few beds since we got her, but we recently go this old dog bed out of storage to see if she liked it.  Does she ever!  She loves to plop in it day or night, and I swear she tries to look as cute as possible when she's in it.  Doesn't she look like a doll?  So glad I get to come home from work and see her wagging tail every day.

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