July 30, 2009

Forts & Kitten

This is the scene I have seen DAILY since school ended. It's gotten more elaborate every week, too, but it's so cool. Carson's got such an imaginitive mind and is so creative and has constructed some pretty amazing forts with our couch cushions, dining room chairs and blankets. I sort of cringe when I see the living room being torn apart every day, but it entertains them so much, so it's okay. These are the things I want them to remember from their childhood, not me being a freak about keeping the house straight. And....we are on week 7 (!) of the kids not watching tv......how can that be? We were in such a habit (and not necessarily a bad one) of watching a couple PBS shows first thing in the morning, but for some reason, and totally of Carson's sole doing....he didn't turn on the tv for the first few days of summer, and I pointed it out and since then, he's quietly been on a mission to not watch tv. It's really funny. He's lost interest in it, and so has Livi. I love that. Although I do miss our little brown friend's morning appearance, Curious George. I sure like that show. :-)
So instead of watching tv....they've begun building forts and playing Kitten.....usually Livi is the kitten and Carson is the Dada (he calls himself that). It's fun to watch them really getting into it and playing so amazingly well together. I love what good buddies they are.

Breakfast on the deck

Dressing up in Daddy's biking gear

...and his CSU garb.

I can't remember what this was....some sort of moon travel/motorcycle/superbaby flying game.

Polenta Tamale Pie

Here's a recipe for a dish we really like around here. It's easy and good for a crowd and super tasty.

Polenta Tamale Pie:

1 lb mild Italian sausage
1 1/2 Tbsp. chili powder
1 Tbsp. ground cumin
1 16 oz. jar salsa
1 15 oz. can black beans
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 small can corn
1 small can olives
2 1lb. rolls polenta, sliced into 1/3 in. thick rounds
3 cups shredded pepperjack cheese (or if you want it less spicy, sub cheddar/jack)

Saute sausage in large pot over medium heat, breaking up. Add chili powder and cumin, stir 1 minute. Add salsa, beans, corn, olives, broth. Simmer until mixture thickens, about 10 minutes. Mix in 1/4 cup cilantro, season with salt & pepper.

Oil a 9x13 glass baking dish. Place half of polenta in dish. Top with sauce and 1 1/2 cups cheese, then remaining polenta, cheese & cilantro. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover w/ foil, chill.)

Preheat oven to 350*. Bake freshly assembled pie, uncovered until heated and sauce bubbles, about 35 minutes. Or bake refrigerated pie, covered 20 minutes, then uncover & bake until heated thru ~ 35 min.


A Boy at the Beach

Origami boxes

These were some end-of-the-school-year presents for the teachers at Carson's preschool. We filled them with mini chocolate chip cookies that we baked (which was such fun....trying to come up with the perfect tiny bite-sized cookies!) I got this tutorial a while back and have used it several times. The boxes are simple to make, and they turn out so cute.

July 29, 2009

Quilt Giveaway!

My friend Amber just posted this on her blog and how fun would it be to win?! I'm blogging about it here to be entered a few more times. You can do it too! Go here to enter. Isn't it beautiful? I just love the colors they used in this quilt and it would go great on Livi's bed. :)