Tuesday, May 31, 2011

csa day: leafy greens

Our CSA box this week included:

Kale, lots of lettuce, chard, radishes, sugar snap peas, and turnips

Tuesday's dinner

Weekly Menu

Sunday: Black bean and rice tacos

Monday: Leftovers

Tuesday/Wednesday: Barbecue tofu sandwiches, roasted turnips, salad with radishes and sugar snap peas, lemon garlic soy dressing

Thursday/Friday: Spring Garden Soup and rice. This is a miso soup with lots of greens. It's from How It All Vegan. (No, I'm not going vegan. I've had this book since high school when I saw the authors do a cooking demonstration. I was getting rid of things the other day and found some good recipes in this book, so it gets to stay around a while longer.)

Saturday: Dinner with K's family

Sunday: Chard gratin, homemade bread, fried eggs

Monday: Leftovers

We are shifting our meal planning to coordinate with our CSA delivery, so our weekly menu will start on Tuesdays instead of Sundays. We get our vegetables on Monday nights and have decided to use the produce as a jumping off point for meals. We'll then make a list of groceries needed to round out the meals. This is the first year we've shifted our planning/shopping. I think it's a necessary step to using all of the vegetables we get. 

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The sugar snap peas tasted so sweet that I kept eating them like candy as I made dinner tonight. I wanted to balance that sweetness in the salad with a little tartness, so I threw together a lemon garlic soy dressing. It was snappy enough to balance the peas. 

Lemon Garlic Soy Dressing

(*Please note, these measurements are approximate. I eyeballed with these amounts in mind. Also, this recipe makes just enough dressing for two people. Multiply if you want more.)

2 TBSP olive oil
1 TBSP soy sauce
1 TBSP lemon juice (or a bit less. K would prefer less tang. I liked it.)
1 clove of garlic

Blend all ingredients together. I use a Magic Bullet and have dressing in seconds. If you'd prefer an unplugged method, mince the garlic and whisk everything together. 

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Just so I don't give you the wrong idea, we don't eat vegetables all the time. We also make room for sweets. These are sugar cookies I baked to celebrate my sister's college graduation. Festive, huh? She liked the cookies, but our real graduation present to her was helping to move all of her stuff home from school on a hot and humid afternoon. We love you a lot, Jules. 

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What's going on in your kitchen this week?

Monday, May 30, 2011

Maine in May




{Manor House Inn, Bar Harbor}


{Tea time at the Manor House, popovers at Jordan Pond House, coffee in Portland, The Great Lost Bear--a top ten U.S. beer bar}

Searching for treasures

{Kennebunk Beach}

Still searching

{Bar Harbor}


{Jordan Pond trail, Acadia National Park}


{View of Sand Beach from Ocean Path trail, Acadia}


{The Bubbles, Acadia}

We adored our getaway to Maine. The days were cloudy and rainy at times, but the fog added a touch of mystery and the rain gave us an excuse to take it easy. We spent our time strolling and then ducking into warm places for tea or coffee. We had such a cozy trip. It was the first time we've ventured to the Northeast, but I know we'll be back to see what else the region holds.

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Where have you been lately? 

Or do you have any plans to travel soon?

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(As always, click on the images above to view them larger.)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Yarn along: balsam fir socks

Yarning along a day late this week

This week I've been working on my Balsam Fir socks, named after all of the lovely firs we found in Maine. Our hikes through moss and evergreens were permeated with the scent of fir and pine.  I worked on this sock on our vacation and still am only halfway through it. Progress is so slow with tiny yarn! I've also been distracted with books lately. This week I'm reading Radical Homemakers, and last week I read The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, which is a really fun mystery.

And because I didn't post last week, but was participating in the yarn along in spirit, here's what I would have posted if I had had computer access:

I've got a lovely pile of Chickadee yarn that I picked up at KnitWit in Portland. I've been admiring Quince yarns online, and once I saw some skeins in person I couldn't wait to knit something with it. Chickadee has a lot of bounce to it--I can't stop squeezing it. My yellow skeins are waiting to be knit into my very own Audrey in Unst cardigan. I won't let myself start on it until I finish my summer sweater, which is stalled at the moment because I misread the pattern. Still, I can't help dreaming of knitting more cardigans. Shalom and Estelle are calling my name, too. The more the merrier!

As far as books go, I've been craving suspense and mystery, so I picked up a quaint island page-turner by Karen MacInerney. It's been a fun read.

* * * * *

What are you reading/making this week?

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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

csa day: "lettuce" begin

Lettuce sandwich with tofurkey and cheese

Our first CSA day of the year! It felt like Christmas to open our door and find a box of fresh vegetables there waiting for us.

This is the first year that K and I have a CSA subscription to ourselves because the past two years we've split it with my family. I'm a little nervous about being able to use all of the vegetables each week, but I'm taking this as a good challenge to try to eat more veggies and keep my diet more local. I think I'll be cooking/preparing food more, maybe freezing or pickling things, sharing with friends, and hosting family and friends to help us eat this bounty. I'd really like to cut our grocery bill down to the minimum (local eggs and milk, yogurt, flour, etc.) and eat mainly from our CSA. I'll be documenting the process here, so hopefully I can get some help when I run out of ideas for what to do with all the radishes and greens I get.

Our vegetables from Finger Picking Farms

This week we got four kinds of lettuce--Panisse, Green Towers, Bronze Arrowhead, and Jericho. We also got Red Russian Kale, turnips, garlic chives, radishes, and strawberries. The strawberries were so tiny and sweet that K and I ate them as soon as we had the box in the door, so no photos of those.

Olive Bread + Bean and Olive Soup

The menu for this week

Sunday/Monday: White bean and black olive soup from my favorite cookbook, Olive bread from this book (pre-CSA meals)

Tuesday: Dinner out for Dad's birthday (Happy Birthday!)

Wednesday/Thursday: Big salad with lots of lettuce, garlic chives, radishes, eggs, and parmesan. Garlic oregano vinaigrette. Olive bread. White bean dip.

Friday: Kale and Turnip greens tart, adapted from this recipe.

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What are you eating this week? 

Are any of you getting a CSA subscription this year?


Monday, May 23, 2011

green tea leaves cardigan

Last week K and I sneaked away for a vacation in Maine. It was cool and rainy the entire time we were there, but we managed to have fun in spite of the weather. We got in a couple of wet, foggy hikes in Acadia, which of course warranted lots of tea time to warm up afterward. It was my idea of a wonderful week. 

I took along my very first knitted sweater, which you may have glimpsed as it was coming into being. However, now that it is a full-fledged sweater, let me introduce you...

I am so proud to have made it. 

I can't help but look at my hands in disbelief and wonder, how did this happen? A pile of yarn is now a sweater; it's sooooo exciting! I have to thank my knitting teacher, Tonya, for helping me throughout the knitting process and for motivating me to make a sweater in the first place. I see lots of sweater-knitting in my future.

I wore my tea leaves cardigan as my jacket in Maine on city strolls and wooded hikes, while scouring outlet shops and hunting for sea glass. The wool stayed warm even as salt water spray and foggy droplets beaded up on it, and I felt amazing wearing it, knowing that my own cleverness and effort were being put to good, tangible use. 

click on photos to enlarge

I'll be writing more about our Maine adventures, my latest yarn endeavors, and our CSA (which starts today!) soon. I'll also be working on responding to comments and visiting your blogs. I've missed you!

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What's going on with you this week? 

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

crocheted stone from margie

I recently won a giveaway on Margie's blog, resurrection fern. Her crocheted stones have been inspiring me for years now, and lately she's been documenting her experiments with natural plant dyes. She has created some wonderful colored yarns and fabrics from materials she's gathered near her home.

I was so happy to receive my giveaway package from Margie. The bamboo "stone" feels so light and smooth. I'm amazed at the colors Margie has achieved--such stunning robin's egg blue and deep, dusty purple. This stone will definitely be treasured. 

Thank you, Margie!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

hello, sunshine.

It's no secret that I love yellow. Canary, lemon, goldenrod, mustard, and butter are all shades that make me smile. So, I wanted to celebrate the sunshine and upcoming summer with a series of yellow vignettes around my apartment. 

The first vignette I created is on one of my living room end tables. It features a bowl of yarn, initial blocks, a mustard tin, a memory jar, a glove mold that is just the size of my hands (extra small), and Elton John's "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road." The memory jar, in case you're wondering, is the jar that I chuck all of my event tickets into--tickets from movies, plays, concerts, ballgames, etc. I'm a saver, but not a scrapbooker. This easy storage arrangement works for me because it keeps all my tickets together and on display, but requires no effort on my part. 

The second vignette is in my phone nook. Yellow books, a button jar, a crocheted stone, and scrabble letters. These are a few of my favorite things!

I couldn't resist posting another photo of the yellow yarn bowl. It holds so many wonderful possibilities...

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What's making you happy today?

Friday, May 13, 2011

this moment: three beers full

a moment from this week that i'd like to savor.

find more moments on soulemama's blog.

heidi braids

playing around with my suddenly (realized) long hair. this is what a year without a haircut looks like--not too bad when it's all tucked up in heidi braids (via cup of jo).

before i grew out my hair, i rocked a bob for quite a few years. my hair was so short!

there is a salon appointment in my near future, but just for a trim because i like having long hair.

i see loads more braids for me this summer. take a look at the other lovely looks joanna has rounded up.

doesn't it make you want to wear a braid more often?

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ps i had to repost this because the original disappeared when blogger was down. sorry if you tried to comment before and couldn't. the comment section should be working now.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

can't stop starting

A sweater in its infancy

The call of new projects keeps beckoning. I keep relenting. Or rather embracing. The beginning of projects, that time when individual supplies (yarn + needle) become something more than they are, is my absolute favorite part of crafting. It's magic.

This past week I've been knitting a red Rusted Root sweater for summer. The yarn is a cotton/wool blend that stays cool in my hands even in the hot humid weather that signals summer in the Ohio River valley is fast-approaching. This is the first time I've tried knitted lace. It's not nearly as intimidating as I expected it to be. Nothing really is if you take things one step (or stitch) at a time.

I am still working on my monkey socks and my Noro scarf, but I wouldn't let myself start a second sweater until I had finished the first. And I did finish it! I've been holding out on you, though, waiting until I get some photos that do it justice. If you're on ravelry, you can get a sneak peek.

The last of the knitting news is that my friend Jennifer is coming over tomorrow for her first knitting lesson. I taught her how to crochet earlier this year; she's a quick learner. I'm excited to share the knitting love.

* * * * * 

In the past week I've started no less than five books. My attention is everywhere these days and nowhere. I read a cumulative 14 pages before I finally picked up one that I plan on finishing--Annie Dillard's The Maytrees. I'm surprised it took me so long to start this novel because Dillard is one of my favorite authors. I love Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, An American Childhood, and Teaching a Stone to Talk. She knows how to describe nature, noticing small details and recalling natural histories that I've never heard. I'm not so far into The Maytrees yet (see my earlier note about lack of attention), but I'll let you know how it goes. The blurb describes it as the optimistic story of long-lasting love. I think I'm going to like it.

* * * * * 

I'm participating in Ginny's yarn along today. Check out her blog to see what others are up to.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

weekend snippets: kentucky in may

derby drink

I am having trouble getting back into the swing of blogging. I thought it would be no problem. School would end, and I'd immediately kick up my blogging frequency. Instead I've been dragging my feet. Of course blogging has been on my mind. Anyone who blogs can probably tell you that the question "Should I blog this?" crosses her mind like ten times a day. But my answer to that question lately has been, "No, too boring for the blog." All the things I've been doing have meaning to me--lunches, dinners, and teas with friends, derby parties, coffee dates, hours of knitting--but I'm having a hard time coming up with things to share here. I'm starting small. Scenes from my Kentucky Derby/Mother's Day weekend (a very good weekend indeed!):

my sister and my hat on derby day

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lettuce in mom's garden. we spent time on mother's day looking at all the new sprouts in her garden.

i found these prints in the mud. is that one near the top a raccoon?

glad to see my old wagon is being put to use carting firewood.

* * * * * 

I hope you all had a great weekend and are having a wonderful week. If you've got any tips for getting back my blogging pizazz, please let me know. 

How do you keep your blogging spirits up? And what would you like to see more of on Field Wonderful?

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

yarn along: noro striped scarf

*yarning along with Ginny today*

I needed something soothing. Big yarn. No fiddly bits. Two needles, preferably straight. The Noro Striped scarf fit the bill. I found a ball of Noro silk garden and half a skein of melon-colored Cascade 220 cozying up together in a bowl. The colors looked great together--pinks, greens, and purples. So I tucked the supplies in my bag yesterday and got to work. The emerging stripes make me so happy. This will be a great project to have in my basket for times when I need to relax.

The book, well, I just can't get enough knitting these days so I picked up At Knit's End from the library. It's a quick read and mildly entertaining. My brain wanted a vacation, so I gave in. I also just finished Gathering Blue, a young adult novel that has some wonderful descriptions of using plants to dye thread. It reminded me of Margie's art. I'd love to try out natural dyeing on fabric or yarn sometime. Have any of you tried it? What was it like?

* * * * *

I also wanted to mention the Knit for Japan project that Ginny has going on. She's collecting knitted AND crocheted hats (don't be fooled by the name of the project) to send to people living in areas of Japan where the tsunami hit. I do hope you'll consider making a hat to show your support. She's hoping to collect 400 hats by August. Head on over to her blog for more information.

Monday, May 2, 2011

the start of something good

Monday again, huh? Well, I just spent my first weekend as a graduate, and I really think the non-student life agrees with me. It felt great not to have homework hanging over my head. There was plenty of time for knitting, eating at new restaurants, playing games, thrifting, listening to records, drinking beer, and catching up with friends and family that I haven't seen in what feels like years. I managed to get a few photos of the past several days. 

Soft and squishy Madelinetosh sock yarn from my new blog friend, Andi. Andi's knitting productivity inspires me to get my needles out even more. I've been wanting to try out Madelinetosh's yarn, so I was over the moon when this green skein arrived. Thanks, Andi!

So far I've made a yarn house with the Madelinetosh. I'm hoping that someday the house will look like these socks. I think it will be slow going. I've already had to rip back once--not that I'm complaining. Even with setbacks, knitting with this lovely yarn makes it worth it.

K's parents came in for a visit. My mother-in-law brought this turtle cake. Yes, it tasted as good as it looks! The candied pecans are my favorite part. Thanks, Phyllis!

I knitted this Sprout hat for someone new in the world. Now I've just got to get it to him before he gets much bigger! I actually made this hat on Friday, starting with the royal wedding and then working on it throughout the day as I awaited my big meeting with my professors. Busy hands kept my nerves calm. Well, as calm as they were going to be. The yarn is Cascade Sierra, which is a washable cotton/wool blend that seems great for a baby. The pattern is a very basic newborn hat.

We squeezed in some game time. This one is Stone Age, which has been a big hit with the family. K has this amazing ability to find cool new board games. I'm looking forward to playing them more now that I've got more free time.

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What's going on with you this week? 

The Kentucky Derby is this coming Saturday, which means lots of family time and parties. This week promises to be a very good one indeed.


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