26 October 2013

october foods

The smell of roasting sweet potatoes tossed in olive oil, sea salt and spices, crunchy pumpkin seeds and salads with quinoa, kale and golden raisins. It's been a week of trying new recipes for me.  I ordered a kale salad a few weeks ago while out to lunch with a girlfriend and I've been craving it ever since.

Quinoa Salad

1 cup quinoa (I had some regular and black quinoa. Simmer for 10 minutes, let cool.)
1 carrot shredded
1 bunch kale (blanched and sliced very thin)
I bunch scallions (I like to chop mine really tiny)
1/2 c. sunflower seeds
2 sweet potatoes, pealed and diced (tossed as described above and roasted)

Trinity Vinaigrette
1:1:1 Honey: Balsamic vinegar: Olive oil

Let all ingredients cool, then toss together with vinaigrette. Salt and pepper to taste. This salad keeps well for a few days. I really enjoyed bringing it for lunch.

The kale salad at the top of the page is something I put together for lunch on Saturday. I blanched and sliced the kale really thin then added scallions, shredded carrots, parmesan cheese and sunflower seeds to taste. The dressing is Marzetti Caesar salad dressing from the store - a favorite at our house. I wasn't sure it would work with the kale, but it was great.

It may seem like I've been eating really healthy this week, but it's all going to be foiled tonight when we attend a Halloween party and I stuff my face with sweets and junk food.

Trick or treat?

XOXO  - Jillian

21 October 2013

falling leaves

Another baby quilt - for a little girl this time - and heaps and heaps of falling leaves with frosty edges.

19 October 2013

spooky house

There's a spooky house directly across the street from us. It's owners plug in the pumpkin lights each night at dusk, which is usually the time when I'm in our kitchen trying to pull something together for dinner. I like the twinkle lights out there announcing this season of roasted pumpkin seeds, cinnamon spice and way too many pieces of bite-sized chocolate candies.

As you can see, I've been baking some cookies and there's the prerequisite "stack of cookies" shot that I love to set up. The pumpkins in the background are there to let you know that I didn't steal this shot from my photo archives - that pumpkin is sitting real time on our kitchen table . . . except one of the pumpkins got roasted up this afternoon for pumpkin bread.

The socks are out for the season. Last weekend I hand-washed my favorites and pulled off the knobs. I like knowing that there's a hand-knit pair of socks waiting for me when I get home from work. I usually shuck off my shoes then pull on my socks and only then do I start to relax.

Hope you're finding ways to mark this delightfully spooky season - for a moment the rain turned to slush here today, reminding us what delightful snowstorms are waiting in December.

12 October 2013


Today I'm thankful for dear friends, letters in the mail, the light through the leaves, the smoky taste of gunpowder green tea in a delicate tea cup, the first chapter of a good book . . .

. . . and the list could go on and on.

I'm currently reading a wonderful book that has my imagination skipping along. I read the first two pages and I knew that I was in love, so I guess I have my weekend pretty much planned out.

1. Brew a pot of tea.

2. Snuggle into my favorite place on the sofa that looks out into the turning leaves with book.

3. Refill teacup as needed.

4. Get up for a walk around the neighborhood, then return to favorite spot to read another chapter and perhaps knit a few rows.

5. Pop a leg of lamb in the oven for dinner, so the whole house smells delicious all afternoon.

The mittens I'm working on are an Elizabeth Zimmerman pattern - her mitered mittens - from "The Knitter's Almanac." The yarns I'm using are a combination of store bought and home grown. You can find the dark brown yarn here.
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