Cooking Night

I have a 10 year old son.  I want him to grow up independent and able to take care of himself.  Cook for himself, make his own doctors appointment (eventually), get a job, be responsible.  I think that’s every mother’s hope for their kids.

I decided to start a cooking night with him.  My kid is an only child.  Not by choice but by circumstances beyond our control.  I know there is a stereotype about only children out there but my kid is pretty well adjusted.  Plays well with others, shares, loves being around other people,(adult and kids) is sensitive and understands others moods.

That being said I started to notice that I was the one with the issues.  I’m a helper.  I like to do for others and I was always doing stuff for him.  Stuff he was able to do or could very easily learn to do.   He’d say,  “I’m hungry”, and I’d go and get him a snack.  So he got to the point where he would just holler “mom, can you get me a snack please?” from upstairs and I’d get it and bring it to him.  He’d be in the living room and ask me for something  and I’d quit what I was doing go get it for him.   I rarely made him do anything.  I was teaching him to rely on others to get what he needed.

I think this is a danger for those of us who have only’s.  It’s so easy to just do it for them.  I don’t mind helping him out.  I think its a nice thing to do.  It hit me though that I was raising a child who was going to need me to make his doctor appointments at the age of 45.  That is not okay with me.  I was not raised that way.  I was raised to be independent and self sufficient.  Things needed to change for his benefit.

This is totally not the direction I was planning on taking with this post.  Maybe a I need to do a post on raising an only child sometime. This whole post was to share about Monday night cooking nights with my kid.  When I send him off to college I want him to know how to make food for himself among other things like laundry and how to make a bed.  I thought I would start with cooking.  Why cooking? I’m not sure.  I am not a great cook, but I enjoy it and we’ve had some really fun cooking nights.

We started with Easy Mac in the microwave.  We have done things like pancakes and french toast.  Salad and smoothies.  Last night we grilled steak and veggies.   I’ve started asking him what he wants to cook too.  Sometimes he has an idea but most times he’ll leave it up to me.   One night when I asked him what he wanted to learn to cook he asked, “can’t I just get a wife?” Seriously kid?  We have been able to incorporate what he is learning in school with measuring units. We talk about healthy eating and making good choices.  We talk a lot during our cooking nights and that is probably my favorite part.  I love spending time with him.

It’s been a great way to teach independence and confidence.   He gets his own snacks now (as he should) but he was also able to make himself dinner (Easy Mac) when his dad’s meeting ran long the other day.  I love seeing him grow and learn new things. I can’t wait to see where our cooking night takes us in the future.

 

Life…

Life has a way of getting really busy and the things you enjoy doing get pushed aside to get the necessary things done.  I hate when that happens.  But that is exactly what has been happening over the past 7 months.

I haven’t blogged.  In 7 months.  Not the plan when I started.  I had a calendar outline of blogging at least once a week if not more.  I like blogging.  Even if no one reads it.  I like processing through issues, sharing recipe’s, sharing stories, success and failures.

I have been debating about whether or not to start up again or just call it quits.  But I’ve been learning about self care recently.  Learning to breath, quiet my mind, get back to doing things I enjoy, and have less screen time.  But that’s another post.

All this to say I am back.  Crazy adventures, personal stories, my northland farming and chicken updates and healthy recipes coming your way.

 

 

Paleo Banana Muffins

I love easy breakfast food.  I need easy breakfast food in my life.  I am not an early morning eater and I work shift work.  That means anywhere from 5:15 am to 10 pm could be my start time.  I need recipes that are simple.  Cooking and baking are not not my favorite things to do.  Mainly because I usually make a giant mess and I don’t like the clean up.

That being said, eating paleo has caused me to become more of a cook and a baker and I am enjoying it more and more. I like finding simple recipes that taste amazing and I found a great one on my paleo flour bag from Bob’s Red Mill.

I think this muffin recipe is amazing.   What I love about this recipe is that it gives you direction about adding fruit or any other add-ins you might desire.  They are simple instructions but at least they gave me a clue about how much to add.  When I experiment or am not sure about a step the ending can be disastrous.   I also love recipe’s that come with pictures of the step by step process.  So helpful when I panic and think is this what it is supposed to look like at this point?  This recipe doesn’t come with step by step pictures – that’ just a little extra info for you.

I am a really picky banana eater.  They have to be just ripe enough to eat.  If it is anywhere past this stage I can’t eat it.  It’s a texture thing.  My husband and son are the same way.   Anyway, I had some banana’s that were well past the eatable stage so I mashed them up and added about a cup to this recipe.  They turned out really, really good.  I not only used them as my breakfast but they were sweet enough (no sugar added) that they worked great as a dessert too.  A multi use muffin that is simple to make!  Yum!

IMG_5195

 

Sometimes You Just Want A Cookie

Sometimes you just want a cookie.  A cookie that doesn’t taste like sawdust or take you 15 minutes to chew one bite.  You want a cookie that says you are making good choices and here is a little something tasty for you.  A cookie that tastes like something you shouldn’t be eating.

That’s what I was wanting the other day.  So I jumped on google and was searching  for a cookie that looked like something I shouldn’t eat but that was  compliant with my  Paleo lifestyle.

That’s when I came across allergyfreealaska.com.  I am so thankful for other bloggers. Allergyfreealaska.com’s  Ultimate Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies are so delish!  They truly taste like I shouldn’t be eating them and yet I can!  I love them.  I make them and put them in the freezer in 2 packs to have on hand for those days when I just need a cookie.  A good cookie.  Mine never come out looking like hers do but they always taste amazing. IMG_4912

So, if on your  journey you are having a day where you just need a really tasty cookie, try these!

http://www.allergyfreealaska.com/2014/03/12/ultimate-paleo-chocolate-chip-cookies/

#allergyfreealaska

Raspberry Picking @ Farm LoLa

I have a really fond childhood memory of going berry picking and it’s something I have always wanted to do with  my family!  This year I missed the pick your own strawberry season.  I also missed buying a large box of already picked strawberries from the guy who sells them on the side of the road.  Thankfully I have some left over strawberry jam from last year.

I was not going to miss pick your own raspberries season! I love raspberries and so does my family.  When I bring them home from the store they are gone almost before they are out of the bag. We are serious about our raspberries. But I  had no idea where to go. Thanks to a couple of my awesome coworkers I was introduced to Farm LoLa.  A great place, run by an amazing group of people.  I was so excited to take my husband and son there!

The atmosphere is lovely.  We could not have asked for a better night.  The temperature was perfect and the bugs were minimal.  The raspberry field is surrounded by forest.  We were greeted by the super friendly staff and one of their many chickens! The field of raspberries was beautiful.  My kid loved it and when he was done picking there was plenty of room in our row for him to run and play while he waited for us to finish.  They probably should have weighed him before we went in because I think he may have snacked on a few while he was picking.  The berries were perfect and so tasty.  I was thinking how wonderful it was going to be to have jam in the middle of February and my husband couldn’t wait to get home and have a scoop or two over a dish of ice cream.

We thoroughly enjoyed our visit to Farm LoLa and came home with a box full of raspberries and a dozen eggs!  We will definitely be visiting Farm LoLa again!  Check them out on Facebook for picking times!

Superior 4th Of July

I think the 4th of July is my favorite holiday.  First, I love summer foods.  Fresh and grilled veggies, fruit salads, potato salads, BBQ’s, watermelon, and s’mores just to name a few. Yum! I am currently eating my way through my MIL’s left over potato salad.  It’s my favorite.  I love getting together with friends and/or family and I love the fireworks and the feeling you get while watching them.

This 4th my hubby and I both had to work a day shift which was totally perfect because then we had our evening free.  For the first time in 20 years the city of Superior had their 4th of July celebration down Barkers Island water front.  They had a small carnival for kids, a car show, vendors and bands playing right up until the fireworks.

Of course in true Northern Wisconsin fashion it was 57 degrees. 4th3My in laws came over and we had a delish summer meal and since we only live 5 blocks from Barkers Island it was an easy walk down to enjoy the festivities.  We arrived just as the last band for the night, Aftershock was beginning to play.   They were great!  We will definitely be hunting down where and when their shows are. My kid danced the night away and had a blast.  One of the lead singers even came down and danced and sang with my him.  It was such a great time!

The fireworks were AMAZING!  Perfect length and really beautiful.  It was so relaxing to sit near the lake bundled under blankets (note a small tone of sarcasm) and watch the fireworks surrounded by my fellow Superians.

Superior you did an amazing job with the 4th of July celebration this year. I can’t wait to see what you have planned for next year!  I love my city!

http://www.aftershockduluth.com

Wisconsin Point

During the summer one of our favorite places to go is Wisconsin Point.  It’s a long stretch of sandy beach surrounded by forest and Lake Superior.  You can see the hillside of Duluth and the ships out in the lakes.  There is a stoic white lighthouse with a red roof. On a still day, the gentle lapping of the water is mesmerizing and on a strong windy day the powerful waves crashing on the beach are a site to behold.  Nothing can soothe the soul after a long day like a few hours at this beautiful beach.

Wisconsin Point is also an entry point for ships.  wp6We have been out there numerous times but we have never been out there when a ship has come through. Then the other night we were just starting to pack up to leave and I noticed a ship that looked as if it was lining up to come in. We jumped in the truck and drove down further down the beach to the entry point.  I was right! The ship was coming through the entry point!  This huge ship was close enough to talk to the crew.  They even blew the horn for Noah when he asked.  I had no idea how long these ships, or are they boats? Anyway, I had no idea that these Great Lake’s ships are so long.  It was so fun and so exciting to actually be there when a ship came through the entry.  I am hoping since we spend so much time at this beautiful place that we will get to see another ship come through.  Maybe next time it will be a salty (a ship that does both lake and ocean) and we can see what the differences are.

If you haven’t been to Wisconsin Point you should definitely put it on your list of destinations this summer.