Last Week’s Accomplishments – A Break in the Rain

It did rain Monday, so that baseball game got bumped to Tuesday.  But, otherwise the week’s schedule played out fully for maybe the first time this spring.

  • Our two older soccer players had travel evaluations.
  • I took the younger two to an animal show at preschool.  Sorry for the blury pictures.  Neither animals nor children were up for staying still.  It’s an armadillo.  Our youngest was particularly fascinated that it could roll up into a ball, softball sized.

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  • We had three soccer games plus four baseball games.  No soccer practices this week between the rain and the concert.  We went to two baseball practices.
  • We missed one baseball game for the 5th grade spring concert.  This wasn’t popular, but school activities take precedence.
  • We went to one playdate and one birthday party.
  • I finally got the car rental associated with the rear ender repair sorted between Commerce and Enterprise.
  • Our oldest had a baseball hitting lesson.
  • I turned in registration for preschool next year.
  • I registered for fall soccer for three and summer soccer camp for one.
  • We went to the BBQ festival.  This is popular every year.

Grocery Update & What We Ate – Week 20, 2017

I made a few small trips this week.  Next week will be a BJs run, though, to make up for it.

On Wednesday, I went to Wegman’s.  This primarily a milk trip; and, I did some restocking.  They finally had meatballs available (this was my third time attempt) so I bought two.

I ran into Shaw’s right after to quickly grab a few items.  It was a rather hot day so the debate – quick stop or parking in the shade.  I opted for the quick stop being second.

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On Thursday, we decided to have Reuben’s for dinner so I made a quick stop and Stop & Shop for ingredients. Our go to Italian salad dressing was on sale so I grabbed two of them also.

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And, that was it!

The photos are actually reasonably representative of what we ate last week.

Monday:
Kids: Chicken nuggets
Adults: Homemade macaroni & cheese

Tuesday:
Kids: Someone else’s house
Adults: Homemade pizza

Wednesday:
Kids: Take out pizza
Adults: Tuna noodle casserole

Thursday:
Kids: Macaroni & cheese
Adults: Reuben sandwiches

Friday:
Kids: Eggs
Adults: Homemade pizza

Saturday:
BBQ Festival

Sunday:
Kids: Hot dogs
Adults: Homemade pizza

 

Rack of Lamb with Mustard Rub

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This recipe originally called for bread crumbs, but the crust just didn’t stick properly.  Since it was still very tasty, I adapted it a bit to keep the flavor, but loose the crumbles.  Unfortunately, I didn’t get a picture after cooking, but you get the idea.

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Rack of Lamb with Mustard Rub
Adapted from Rack of Lamb with Mustard-Bread Crumb Crust, Williams-Sonoma Steak & Chop

Ingredients:
2 racks of lamb, frenched
Rub:
2 tsp dried rosemary
2 tsp minced garlic
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp mustard
Salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°.
  2. Line one sheet pan with aluminum foil.  Place racks with the ribs outward (pictured above).
  3. Combine rub ingredients and spread evenly over both racks.
  4. Roast to an internal temperature of 130°, about 15 minutes.
  5. Transfer to a carving board and rest, tented, for 5-10 minutes before serving.
  6. Carve into chops to serve.

Spring Schedule 2017 – A Day at a Glance

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In the past, I’ve written about our spring and fall schedules in one week chunks.  I’ll do that again next week.  But, today I decided to focus on Thursday since for the past few weeks it has been very busy.  The skating class ended last week which has really freed things up.  But, the crossover from winter to summer was particularly noticeable on Thursdays.

8:00 – 1:45          A,B,C,D at school

2:30 – 3:45          A,B,C bike club

4:00 – 4:30          D,E skating class

5:30 – 7:00          A,B soccer practice

6:45 – 8:00          town related meeting (This varies from Little League to school meetings, but Thursday seems to be the preferred day.  One adult goes.)

Somewhere in there we get in lunch and dinner.  Thankfully, we have weekly homework packets this year so there’s little homework that HAS to be done on Thursday.

 

Last Week’s Accomplishments – The Cuisinart Replacement Blade Arrived!

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Unless you have been in hiding, or don’t think about kitchen stuff at all, you probably know that in December Cuisinart recalled about 8 million food processor chopping blades because metal fragments were coming off in people’s food.  You probably also know that they’re getting a lot of bad press because of how long its taking to get people new blades, despite telling them to throw out the old one immediately.

I filed for my replacement blade on December 16, 2016 – three days after the recall went out.  On December 22, I received a form email, thanking me for my patience.  It also said they’d let me know when my blade was on the way.  I received basically the same email again on February 4, 2017.  It also included their much discussed online recipe book (apparently it contains recipes that require the chopping blade), but I haven’t looked at it.

Well, months went by and I didn’t hear from them again until it just showed up on Friday.  I definitely would prefer to have the blade vs another email, but it should be pointed out that they never did alert me that it had been shipped.

Some pictures of the new vs old blade and the lengthy set of instructions (obviously meant to prevent them from being sued by the customer or trash collector that cuts themselves).  Clockwise, its the new blade in its complete packaging, the new blade out of the packaging, the two blades together for comparison, and the old blade packaged for the trash.

I have used the new one and it works fine.  It’s also easier to clean, which is a nice side benefit.  But, it took the full six months to get here.

Other things that happened last week:

  • I managed to get the whole house cleaned, at basically the same time.
  • We hosted a Mother’s Day brunch.
  • The younger boys had their last skating class.
  • I went to the 5th grade camping trip meeting.
  • The contractors came by to adjust the doors.
  • We had 4 baseball games.  We also had more rain and thus rain outs.
  • We had 3 soccer games.
  • We went to soccer and baseball practices.
  • The older boys had bike club.
  • We went to the kindergarten concert.
  • We went to the art show where the 3rd graders’ work was on display.
  • We went to a high school baseball game.

Grocery Update & What We Ate – Week 19, 2017

Last week was a light grocery shopping week.  I went to Wegman’s twice and the farm stand once.

My first trip to Wegman’s was on Monday.  The bag contains shallots, which were used for dinner Monday night.  Everything else was restocking.

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On Friday, I went back to Wegman’s, primarily for milk.  I also got some eggs for the Mother’s Day brunch.

On Saturday, I went to the farm stand for green beans as well as nice bread for Sunday’s brunch.

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With baseball season in full swing, the split dinners keep coming.

Monday:
Kids: Hot dogs
Adults: Pan fried steak, potato pancakes

Tuesday:
Kids: Leftover pizza
Adults: Homemade pizza

Wednesday:
Kids: Chicken nuggets
Adults: Indian take out

Thursday:
Spaghetti & meatballs

Friday:
Kids: Hot dogs
Adults: Homemade pizza

Saturday:
Kids: Shrimp, broccoli
Adults: Homemade pizza

Sunday:
Chicken pot pie
Green beans

Broccoli & Cashew Stir-Fry

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This side is suggested with the pork dumplings, but it could go with any number of main dishes or even be a light dinner by itself.

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Broccoli and Cashew Stir-Fry
adapted from Family Fun magazine, February 2010

Ingredients:
4 tsp vegetable oil
3 scallions: whites minced, greens sliced on the bias
2 tsp minced fresh ginger
5 cups broccoli florets (or however much your family will eat)
2 cloves minced garlic
¼ tsp crushed red pepper
¼ cup water
2/3 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper
1/3 cup roasted, unsalted cashews (raw will work also, but unsalted is key)

Directions:

  1. Heat the oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the scallion whites and ginger.  Stir fry until just fragrant; about 30 seconds.
  3. Add the broccoli.  Cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic and crushed red pepper.  Toss to mix.
  5. Pour in the water and cover.
  6. Reduce heat to medium and steam until the broccoli is just crisp-tender, about 3 minutes.
  7. Uncover the skillet and raise the heat back to medium-high.
  8. Add the bell pepper and toss to combine.  Stir fry briefly to soften the bell pepper.
  9. Stir in the cashews and scallion greens.
  10. Enjoy.

The White Carpet

So … I got a lot of flak buying a white carpet with young children.  Stains they all said.  How will you keep it clean?

Well, first, it was cheap.  And an experiment.  But, its doing quite well on the stain front.  However, I’ve discovered that its easy to loose sight of toys (especially Star Wars toys) on a white carpet.  They don’t hurt as much as LEGOs to step on, but they’re not great.

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See if you can identify:

  • Wii Controller
  • Wii Nunchuck
  • Angry Birds Star Wars
    • Luke Skywalker
    • General Grievous
    • 4 Storm Troopers
  • Mega Blok
  • Penguin
  • Polar Bear
  • Star Wars
    • Millennium Falcon
    • Super Star Destroyer
    • 2 Speeders
    • AT-AT
    • AT-ST
    • Imperial Shuttle
    • Ghost (Rebels)
    • Starspeeder 1000 (Star Tours)

 

Last Two Week’s Accomplishments – Another One Bites the Dust

This past week we parted with quite a few pairs of pants, including this one.  There were also a few socks, but mostly pants.  Frankly, I’m surprised this pair lasted the winter.  Gymboree athletic pants have not held up well for us in the past.  Thankfully its spring.

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  • We’ve only had 5 baseball games so far.  4 have been rained out.
  • We’ve had 3 baseball clinics.
  • The baseball players went to the opening day parade.  I made a banner for their team.
  • Soccer games were also affected.  Over two weeks we had 4 and 2 were cancelled.
  • Only 1 soccer practice was cancelled.

The rain policy for both baseball and soccer is age dependent.  It’s also often hard to get enough kids to play a rescheduled game.  I’m not sure how many of these games will end up getting rescheduled.

  • The 5th → 6th grade transition has begun.
    • I went to two meetings at the middle school.
    • We registered for middle school classes (foreign language & music choices).
  • I went to meetings at both the elementary school and preschool.
  • We had two weeks of bike club and skating.
  • We had 1 doctor’s appointment.
  • We had 1 playdate.
  • We went to 1 birthday party.
  • I got out the next bin of clothing for the baby to see what we had for summer / next size.  Turns out we’re in good shape for everything except tops so I’ve been doing a little shopping to fill in that hole.  It’s been tricky finding non-pink (all the bottoms are pink) onesie tops with sleeves, but we’ve managed.

 

Grocery Update & What We Ate – Week 18, 2017

I had four smaller grocery trips this week.

The biggest trip was to BJ’s on Wednesday.  We were very low on both milk and bread.

I also went to Stop & Shop on Wednesday.  Everything was on sale plus I had a coupon for the Triscuits.

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On Thursday, we made a quick stop at the farm stand.

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Finally, on Friday I made a relatively small trip to Wegman’s.  The paper wrap is tilapia; we had fish tacos for Cinco de Mayo.  I’m glad I got jalapenos the day before as Wegman’s was out of them, again.

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We had a number of baseball rain outs last week.  But, since notifications didn’t usually come until the afternoon, dinners were still generally quicker items.

Monday:
Kids: Take-out pizza
Adults: Pan fried steak, potato pancake

Tuesday:
Kids: Macaroni & cheese
Adults: Homemade pizza

Wednesday:
Eggs

Thursday:
Kids: Chicken nuggets, green beans
Adults: Homemade pizza

Friday:
Fish tacos
Guacamole
Pico de gallo

Saturday:
Lemon chicken
Pan fried potatoes
Broccoli

Sunday:
Kids: French toast
Adults: Pan fried steak, potato pancake