Fall Friday Coffee Date

Happy Fri-YAY everyone, anyone getting fries to celebrate?! Haha, kidding. But I know someone that wouldn’t turn down a french fry at the sound or smell of one…James. But I titled this a coffee date, so I’m thinking I need to switch gears here. Join me with a cup of coffee, tea, or hot chocolate (tis’ the season) and let’s chat! How has the week been for you? A good one I hope!

A picture of the most delicious veggie and cheese omelet I got for breakfast the other day at a diner, because I always drink my hot chocolate too fast to take a picture πŸ˜‰

Josiah was off this past week, and while we didn’t travel anywhere it has been a very pleasant staycation for our family. I can’t downplay it too much because we did splurge at the beginning of the week with a most wonderful spa day(!!). It was a much appreciated and enjoyed day of relaxation and pampering. In addition to our signature massages, we enjoyed our time soaking in the hot tub, napping in the peaceful relaxation room, dipping our feet in the warm foot pool, eating a delicious lunch outside looking out at a fairytale pond and gardens, and concluding with luxurious showers and all of the beautifully scented spa products. Ahhh, to live in that kind of paradise forever…we can only dream.

After our day at the spa on Monday, it was back to reality the rest of the week! Cue all of the toddler entertainment and drama. We’ve been trying to keep things as fun and relaxing as possible though in true vacation spirit. I feel like we’ve been eating out more, mostly takeout, but any break from cooking is a vacation for me! And I’ve been letting my usual chores slide a bit in favor of relaxing during James’s naps. Although I got quite a bit of cleaning and laundry done yesterday and despite dragging my feet with all of it, clean sheets and a (mostly) clean apartment does make it feel worthwhile.

Field trip to the mall!

I’m thinking this weekend we’ve got to dive head first into some kind of fall activity. I can’t take it any longer, I need to fully embrace this season and the idea of going to a pumpkin patch, corn maze, or apple fest, all sound amazing! Especially if there is some kind of treat involved, like a warm apple fritter…mmmm πŸ˜‰ I guess I’m feeling especially excited too because I think James will enjoy any kind of fall venue this year and I love experiencing things that are new to him through his eyes. It’s one of my favorite parts about parenting.

James’s first ride on the carousel

Let’s talk about YOU! Any fun and festive weekend plans on the agenda? Are you team apple or pumpkin this time of year? Tough decisions! Another burning question I’ve got for you is, apple cider donut or apple fritter? I don’t even know if I could decide!

Have a great weekend folks! We’ll talk soon πŸ™‚

Friday Favorites #8

It’s still Friday, so that’s a win! Hello everyone! How was your week? We had a good one over here full of all things SUMMER. Let’s dive into my favorites from the week before the day totally escapes me, haha.

  • Breakfast Sandwiches

We had breakfast sandwiches while camping last weekend and I’ve been craving more of them ever since! Luckily we had leftover bagels and cheese, which made for the perfect excuse to keep the train rolling with breakfast sandwiches quite a few mornings this week. Topped with Trader Joe’s Everyday Seasoning of course πŸ™‚

  • Couch Cuddles

Yes, James has a tear rolling down his cheek, but shortly after this photo was taken he warmed up to a little cuddle session on the couch yesterday after dinner. He was hyper-charged and I thought for sure that some relaxation on the couch would be the last thing he would want, and it was at first. But then he settled down next to me and we just sat there for a good 20 minutes before his bath. It was easily the best part of the day and so shocking! I love these moments with James <3.

I made this recipe for a blueberry avocado quinoa salad the other day and it reminded me how nice it is to put a little effort into lunch sometimes. Don’t get me wrong, easy lunches are where it’s at…PB&J, leftovers, random snacks from the pantry, yes to all of that and more. Once in a while I get the desire for something more fancy, and this was an awesome lunch bowl! It did require some prep work, but offers a fantastic lunch and leftovers for the rest of the week.

I got around to making one of the breakfast items I mentioned earlier this week, a batch of whole wheat greek yogurt muffins. The baked oatmeal hasn’t happened yet, but there’s always next week! These muffins come together quick, and they are bland, but not to the point where they are inedible. In fact, James has been enjoying them more than I thought (and so have I)! They have been a great on-the-go snack option for him and they don’t make too much of a mess, well one that can’t be easily cleaned up at least. As you can see, he left behind quite the crumb collection in his stroller.

Don’t mind my sandy hands. Who else loves silicone rings? They are so much fun! I love that you can easily match the ring color to your outfit, and I often find myself unconsciously playing with these rings throughout the day. Plus, they are cheap so if to lose it in the sand or water, it’s not a big deal.

  • Summer!

We’re loving summer this year especially since the whole family can enjoy it! I’m pretty sure I spent most of last summer still navigating the newborn and early baby stages of life. To be able to get outside again feels great!

Question of the Day: What’s one thing you’re loving this week?

Have a great weekend everyone!

Food Highlights from the Week: July 2021

Hey hey hey! How’s it going? Coming at you late again this afternoon with some food highlights from the week. I say that blogging is my creative outlet, but I find so much pleasure in creating beautiful meals. I’ll link as many recipes as I can so that you can join in on the cooking fun!

My favorite lunch of all times. Especially when these charcuterie spreads include donuts, I mean…

James couldn’t resist the donuts either.

Gotta love a mix-and-match sandwich combo. I’m all about trying a little bit of everything. If anyone wants to share multiple dishes with me, yes please. For lunch on this particular day we did half tuna salad and half turkey, salami, ham and cheese. You never get bored this way!

Trader Joe’s can you just stop being so good! Seriously, this is the best cereal EVER! Especially if you’re a cereal snacker, I usually just eat this cereal by the handful without milk and it’s perfect. Reasonably healthy too!

Honey-lime chicken enchiladas with black bean and corn salad. These required little effort. I put the chicken breasts in the crockpot, covered them in the marinade, cooked on high for 2 hours, shredded the chicken, mixed in the cheese and filled the tortillas. For the green enchilada sauce on top, I bought a jar from Wegmans because I was feeling lazy. I loosely followed this recipe for the black bean salad, added cilantro and quartered cherry tomatoes, and it came together in a breeze. All about quick and easy this summer!

Finally a breakfast that isn’t a pancake! So refreshing to eat something different. Major love for cinnamon raisin toast over here, so glad to have it on this week’s breakfast rotation.

This meal was perfectly simple yet incredibly satisfying meal. It was a honey lemon garlic salmon, and I mixed some of the extra marinade in to the couscous before serving alongside roasted broccoli and this roasted tomato and parmesan focaccia from Trader Joes’s. You’re killing me TJ’s. When am I going to work there? When will I be sponsored? Ha!

Thanks Ambitious Kitchen for a healthy treat to indulge in this week! These homemade peanut butter twix bars turned out great! I made them last Saturday, and they’re still good thanks to fridge storage. Don’t mind the chocolate on my hands in the picture!

I hope everyone is wrapping up their week on a good note! TGIF tomorrow!

Talk to you soon πŸ™‚

A Pancake a Day…

We are obsessed with pancakes. Two of us are at least. Josiah would pass on breakfast all together if I didn’t stress the importance of breakfast all the time. His bowls of cereal are comically small, but at least it’s something. I don’t understand people who can eat a small breakfast, or gasp(!) skip breakfast all together. If you fall into one of those categories, please tell me how. I’m the opposite and need a hearty breakfast followed by a mid-morning snack just to get me through to lunch.

Fortunately I have a pancake eater on my team now, kind of. James doesn’t really have a choice, and I’ve found pancakes to be a winner for both of us. Mostly because they are a lot easier than I thought, and there are so many flavors and variations to experiment with. In my experience, pancakes are an optimal baby food as well. James does not like oatmeal in any form, yogurt is hit or miss, cereal too crunchy, toast gets boring, and eggs are a definite no. Which leaves us with pancakes and waffles. I love a good waffle but Lord help me if I’m willing to put that much effort into breakfast on a daily basis. Pancakes on the other hand, much more manageable.

We have been eating pancakes almost every day for a long time. My pancake obsession began with Kodiak cakes which I still love, but I’ve found certain homemade versions to be yummier, just as convenient, and packed with even more nutrients. No shame on the Kodiak and other pancake mix people out there, we love a good mix! I feel like we are nearing the end of our pancake streak, but who knows. In the meantime, here’s a look at some of our fav pancake creations, recipes and topping ideas.

Greek yogurt pancakes (made in the blender!) topped with nut butter, yogurt, and strawberries.

Apple pancakes (made in the blender!) with nut butter and blueberries.

Almond flour pancakes topped with greek yogurt and peaches.

Banana pancakes (made in the blender!) topped with nut butter and berries.

More banana pancakes, different toppings!

Kodiak cakes with scrambled eggs and cantaloupe.

Not sure, but I think these were greek yogurt pancakes again.

If you’re not pancaked out by this point, I like to make these 4 ingredient pancakes for James because they are super cute and the batter takes less than a minute to make. I personally find the texture of these to be a little weird, but for babies they’re great!

On my pancakes must-make list are these fluffy whole wheat zucchini bread pancakes, especially while zucchini season is in full swing. These lemon blueberry quinoa pancakes sound intriguing and also seem like a summer essential. And for a weekend splurge, these salted brown butter pancakes are next up on the griddle! Maybe I’ll be able to convince Josiah to eat them with us since they don’t have a “healthy” label attached.

Question of the day: Who wants to come over for pancakes?