Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Hay A-mazes

I don't know why these things never cease to surprise me, but they do. The little things....there was a bouncy castle and big slide, but the thing that held their attention the longest was the hay maze. And the hay in the underwear proved it!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Breakfast for dinner

Who doesn't love breakfast for dinner?!
We welcomed the Harvest Moon last week, by having a dinner of pumpkin pancakes made with the only remaining jar of pumpkin puree from last years harvest. What a harvest that one was. I remember at the time that I was really tired of roasting pumpkins and running the food processor....I couldn't wait for it to end. But wow, we made it until this harvest time....not too shabby.

While we were mixing up the ingredients, Hazel came up with her own version to put outside for the flower fairies to help them get ready for the cold times ahead. Here it is:

Hazel's Pumpkin Pancakes

A bit of pumpkin
Toadstool spots
5 princess crowns
5 scoops of fairy dust
3 scoops butterfly dust
3 scoops leaves
5 scoops twigs

Mix together and cook. Leave out for your fairy friends.

Here is my version taken from "The Great LIttle Pumpkin Cookbook" by Michael Krondi.

3 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. each of nutmeg and allspice
1/2 tsp. salt
6 tbsp. light brown sugar
4 eggs
2 1/3 cups buttermilk
1 1/4 cups pumpkin puree
6 tbsp. melted butter

In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder and soda, spices and salt. Whisk until mixed.
In a large bowl, whisk together sugar and eggs until blended. Stir in buttermilk, pumpkin and butter. Add the dry ingredients into the wet and whisk until smooth.
Heat a cast iron pan over medium heat. Brush lightly with oil. Drop batter into pan by 1/4 cup amounts. Cook pancakes until bubbles form on top and bottoms are golden brown (about 3 minutes). Turn over and cook the other side for about 2 minutes.
Repeat over and over until batter is gone.
Serve with maple syrup (of course!).

This becomes one of my "go-to" dinners over the dark winter months. Maybe it is the bright orange of the pumpkin that makes things happy....maybe it is the smell of the spices....maybe it is the comfort of it all.
Enjoy your Sunday.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Fall In

Happy happy autumn. This is a wee bit of a late wish. You see, along with the ushering in of my favorite season, the forces that be felt my resolve needed testing....which came in the form of a family cold. My surrogate little ones included. I tend to be the one who usually does not play the sick card....and let me tell you that sometimes I wish I could....a day in bed - yes, please.
As these things usually go, being home sick with Hazel meant that there was an unusually large amount of free time. The fairy house in the last picture is what we created together. Funny how sick time clears your mind, and sometimes depending on the severity, creativity abounds.

Sleeping girl with her cats.

Wool socks and blankets washed and put into immediate use.

Cork board with small reminders of the season for the little ones.

Our fall fairy house. Try as I might, she will not keep the Polly Pockets out! I have to admit I was tempted to remove them from the picture, but rethought. I need to accept the fact that all my girls will have been Polly Pocket appreciators.

Welcome Autumn!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Toothless wonder

Here I go again...another round of toothfairy visits. This one happened so suddenly that I didn't really have time to register the implications of it. One Saturday it was noticed, the next it was swallowed. Yes, swallowed. Luckily the toothfairy is a trusting soul, and with a little note of explanation from Hazel all turned out as it should. With a shiny two dollars under the pillow.
My girl, growing up, letting me join in the wonder of it all.
It is a wonder isn't it....imagination, belief....all the things that come so naturally to little ones. Where does it go in the adults?
I am so thankful to have the daily reminders!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Signs of the time

This past weekend was spent experiencing the weather of fall...from really hot sunshiney days to cold and dreary wet days. I got to spend most of my weekend outdoors taking in Abbey's soccer games....come to think of it, this is another sign of autumn, the end of outdoor soccer. I am happy to report the following indicators of the upcoming season:

The rubber boots have resurfaced after a long summer of not requiring their services.

Our front porch displaying one long season of driftwood collecting and gourd growing.

My favorite pot reclaiming it's rightful place on top of the stove. Cooking up the piles of tomatoes and zucchini loitering in my fridge, and turning them into soup. (Minestrone Soup from the classic Moosewood Cookbook)

Finally, the most sure sign of all....Marshmallow, one of our cats getting cozy on the couch for her days instead of racing to get out the door not to be seen until the dark of night.

Happy day to you.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Last days.

We spent a wonderful long weekend in cooler temperatures with good friends doing fun things. There was a trip to the Museum of Civilization, a quick visit to an estate sale full of really amazing things, dinner out followed by yummy gelato, a hike in the hills that seemed to be covered in mushrooms....the list goes on and on. I'll say it again, that the addition of just one more day into the weekend makes a world of difference to a family.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

This moment

*one that I want to remember always*