Argh! Latley I have been having the worst luck breaking things. I’m a bit klutzy anyway, but in the last couple of weeks I have broken quite a few glasses. Today I broke yet another one! Drew’s mom and aunt came over and after lunch I went to wash the dishes. We have double kitchen sinks and one has the dish strainer and the other the dishes to be washed. Both were pretty full and there was an empty wine glass on the counter and I have no idea how I bumped it, but I did. And *smash* — a sink full of glass shards. Lovely. I did end up getting everything, and amazingly did not get cut, either. But still.

Maybe I should just drink my wine out of plastic tumblers from now on πŸ˜‰

New baby!

yay! our new forester!

Well, after several months of research and procrastination, we finally traded in our Jeep Liberty for a new car! We decided on a 2009 Subaru Forester. The boys were at my parents’ for the weekend, so the night before our appointment, we decided to check out what the dealer had on the lot since we were having dinner nearby anyway. (Sidenote: we noticed how much commercial real estate there is over in Kingston — so much retail space being built or redone and leased out. It seems like there is everything over there, so I can’t imagine what else they can put in.) They only had a few, so our choices were pretty limited, but we fell in love with this black one.

The next morning we drove over. We took both cars because I had been out running a few errands and instead of driving all the way home when I was halfway there… Long story short, the dealership manager took the Jeep for a drive before giving us a final trade-in value and it started to make weird noises. We had barely driven it at all in the past couple months. I did notice an odd noise the last time I was in it, but nothing terribly scary. Well they took it in the shop and asked us to take a listen. It was awful! It did not sound good at all. We went back to the sales office and when our rep came back he let us know that it ended up stalling out and they couldn’t restart it. They had to push it to the back of the lot! OMG… I could not believe this was happening. Our poor little Liberty had decided it was time to go. So needless to say, we did not get our original quote on the trade-in, but I was still quite happy with what we ended up with (all things considered).

So yeah, we ended up with a new Forester and picked it up yesterday morning. I love, love, love it! It drives *so* smooth and is so nice. πŸ™‚ And I know it won’t be kicking the bucket anytime soon, LOL!

CSA Share: Week 14

CSA: Week 14

Awesome share this week, though I wish we had some green peppers instead of the red ones. I know, most people like the red ones best, but I prefer green bell peppers. Alas… I won’t complain. I plan to roast these babies. We also got lettuce, arugula, leeks, carrots, green beans, eggplant (after a little break I can deal with them again), garlic, yellow squash, zucchini, cucumbers, onions, tomatoes, potatoes, scallions, and the usual herbs and flowers. I did not take advantage of the PYO cherry tomatoes or extra beans. I was kind of rushing to get home tonight.

I’ll be bringing some of this stuff up to my parents. I also think I’ll pickle the green beans and carrots. I’ll make stewed tomatoes since I never did get around to that last week. I am super excited about the arugula. I thought it was over in the spring, so I am thrilled to have it back! It’s one of my favorite salad greens. I’ll be making chicken milanese for sure. Yum!

Oh yeah, I have a blog

sorry that i can't stop taking photos of my roses What day is it? Tuesday? Sheesh, I can’t keep the days straight this week for some reason. I hope you all had great weekends! Ours was good. On Saturday, Drew stained the deck so that is one more project completely out of the way. Needless to say, he is really happy about that. We decided to go out for dinner on Saturday and tried the burger shop in Red Hook that I wrote about for the paper. It’s called Uncle Chippie’s Old Fashioned Burger Shop and it’s really good! If you’re in the area, give them a try. The owners are super nice and they have really creative burgers. I ordered the chili burger and Drew ordered the bruschetta burger. Of course, we split our meals so we could try both! The chili burger was SO good! I think I want to eat my way through all 14 specialty burgers, LOL! Next time: the stroganoff burger.

After dinner we ran to the supermarket to pick up beer and ice cream, and then headed home. Sunday morning I went grocery shopping by myself (!!!). I hit three stores and would have gone to Stop & Shop as well, but the traffic for the fair made it impossible. I had a hard enough time going straight through the intersection on 9/9G to head home, forget about turning right toward the fairgrounds.

I spent yesterday catching up on cleaning and laundry. The boys are going for a “vacation” at my parents for the next few days and I want to actually relax instead of spend the time cleaning like I usually do, LOL! In fact, I need to finish packing up their bags. I also need to prep dinner, since tonight I have to pick up our farm share. I hate when I am not organized and we end up eating late. I think I’m just going to make tacos tonight because that way I can just have everything ready.

Well, off to slice and dice!

More Exciting Than The Olympics!

At least to me πŸ™‚ That is, I’m talking about all the Vice President talk. Granted, I have only watched maybe 5 minutes of the summer Olympics and do not care to watch any more. But I am WAY more interested in who Obama’s pick is going to be. I’m going to guess Joe Biden. But probably because that is who I’m hoping it is (back in the early days of the race, I took a political compatibility quiz and I matched up closely to him). I’m hoping that since I can’t have my first pick (Hillary, obviously), hopefully Obama will choose a VP that I can get behind since I am not a huge Obama fan. Of cours I’m even less a McCain fan, but I’m interested to see who he is going to pick too, as I haven’t completely decided who I am going to vote for in the fall. (Though I’m pretty sure.) I’m just sad that yet again I feel like I have to vote for the lesser of two evils and not someone I can really support. Sure I could vote for a third party, but look what happened in the Gore-Bush-Nader race. What about you? Do you have a gut feeling about who either candidate will choose? Anyone in particular you are hoping for? Will a VP pick help swing your vote one way or another?

Fun at the Fair

Dutchess County Fair

We did end up going to the Dutchess County Fair the other night and it was a lot of fun! It was incredibly crowded, too, which got a little stressful at times. Still, the boys enjoyed it. I’m so glad we have a wagon for them to ride in! It makes these kinds of events so much easier. The downside to the fair is, as you can imagine, the price of everything. Good grief! I can’t believe how much money we spent on so little πŸ™ But we expected it. I guess that is why you don’t go every year! You have to buy ride tickets, so we bought just enough for both boys to go on four rides. (Apparently rides are included in admission at the Ulster County Fair so next year we might check that out.) At least they enjoyed themselves — that’s what matters, right?

We also decided to play a couple of the carnival games. The first was a water squirting game that Drew played with Jake. They did not win, but the guy who did gave his stuffed frog to Jake! How nice was that? Then I played a dart throwing game and kicked butt πŸ™‚ Of course, the carnie weaseled another $5 out of me, but at least Noah got a prize too. Unfortunatley I have to sew up the stuffed doggie because it had a rip in it that I didn’t noticed until later in the evening. Sigh…

We actually took it really light on the food. We had some awesome fresh-cut french fries (probably the deal of the fair!). For $3 we got a heaping carton of them. The pretzel was also amazingly good. Drew and I shared a gyro and it was decent, but we are spoiled by some great Greek restaurants so we have high standards πŸ™‚ I wanted to try these ribbon fries, but they were $7.00 and then the toppings were 50 cents extra, so we skipped that. We decided instead to stop at Del’s on the way home for ice cream cones. It ended up being much cheaper and we felt good about supporting the little guy. I felt bad because it was *so* dead over there. Usually it’s really busy around 7 PM, but with the fair down the road, I guess it’s slow this week.

People watching was fun too. There were lots of aging hippies, people wearing leather clothing and body jewelry, and some really bad hair (hello, mullets!). It’s good to go every couple years, but I am “fair’ed out” for a while I think!

Slow Cooking Thurday: Stewed Tomatoes

slowcookingbanner.jpgSince Tuesday afternoon I’ve been trying to think of ways to use up the 6 pounds of wonderful heirloom tomatoes we got in this week’s farm share. I’m one of those strange people who don’t particularly love raw tomatoes. I enjoy fresh salsa, bruschetta (which I made for lunch today), and Caprese salad, but a girl can only make so much of those in any given week, you know? I also am picky about my tomato sauce. My husband makes an *amazing* sauce that requires Tuttorosso crushed tomatoes — he can’t get the same taste from fresh ones and really, why mess with a good thing? But there had to be some way I could easily use these:

heirloom tomatoes

And that’s when it dawned on me (actually, it dawned on me just before I fell asleep last night): stewed tomatoes!!! I remember my mom and Babci both making stewed tomatoes from the ‘maters in my Uncle Frank’s graden. I think Babci used to can them, but since I have yet to dive into the world of home canning (though believe me — it’s on the horizon) I figure I can freeze them easily and then use in soups, stews, chili, or various recipes. They’re also good as a side dish. My mom and grandmother made them on the stove, but I’m going to make them in my Crock Pot!

Slow Cooker Stewed Tomatoes

  • 6 whole to 8 large ripe tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1 medium onion — thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried sweet basil
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley

Quickly dip tomatoes in boiling water; remove skin. Quarter tomatoes and remove core and seeds. In slow-cooker, combine all ingredients except parsley. Cover and cook on low 8 to 10 hours. Remove bay leaf. Sprinkle top with parsley. Makes 4 to 5 servings. Note: Recipe can be doubled and still fit in a 3 1/2 quart slow-cooker.

For more mouth-watering recipes, be sure to check out this week’s edition of Slow Cooking Thursday!

CSA Share, Week 13

CSA Share, Week 13

Well, clearly the summer’s harvest is rocking and rolling. Check out last night’s haul! OMG, look at all those tomatoes! And our farm has actually had an animal (or several) that has been eating them up, so just imagine what we’d be getting otherwise. Here is the breakdown:

6 lbs. of tomatoes
2 green peppers
1 red pepper
2 cukes
3 leeks
2 zucchini
carrots (I don’t remember how much)
3 squash
3 lbs (I think) of potatoes
2 lbs onions
3 heads lettuce
1 melon (we picked a cantaloupe – last of the season)

PLUS, PYO cherry tomatoes, basil, dill, cilantro, parsely, scallions, beans (didn’t pick any this week), and flowers.

Jake apparently ate more cherry tomatoes than he picked. Man, I never met a kid who likes tomatoes as much as him, especially considering that neither Drew nor I particularly love them. But I tried one and even I think they’re tasty! The heirlooms are delicious. We had them in a salad at lunch (of course we had a salad in prepration for fair food tonight, LOL!). In other good news, the eggplant curse is broken!!! Note the absolutely lack of eggplant this week. I have to say that I am rather relieved.


As for plans for the veggies… I think I’m going to try a recipe for potato and leek gratin that was in this week’s CSA newsletter. Maybe some tomato-zucchini soup? Minestrone? Maybe I’ll blanch and freeze the squash? Or make chocolate and zucchini bread? I really don’t have anything set in stone, so we’ll just see what I feel like πŸ™‚