Thursday, August 30, 2012

around the kitchen

We've spent many hours in the kitchen this week......and I love it. 
I am so happy when my hands are busy and messy with end of summer goodness.

My sweet baby girl is leaving me for school next week, and so we have been making the most of our quiet hours at home while brother has been gone. 
We spent yesterday morning baking in our was perfect.
Zucchini. Everywhere. Still. 
They just won't give up. 
I can't even tell which zucchini belongs to which plant anymore--they have grown together and formed their own community. 
So I shred and shred and shred, freezing it for fall and winter months for soups, pastas, and breads.
We are loving all the farmer's market has to offer right now. You can really get everything you need--this week we got 
peaches (of course)
and these beautiful berries.
I love my's really weird how I obsess over them....
I could play with them all day (and I do)
here we have a green zebra, radiator charlie, hawaiian pineapple
radiator charlie, green zebra, purple cherokee
and a favorite lunch right now
Whole Wheat Toast with 
Avocado, Tomato, and Goat Cheese
pictured is a hawaiian pineapple tomato and it was deeeeelicious
What's been going on in your kitchen?

Happy Weekend!

just because

just because I really,
I do. 
they fascinate me. 
if I have the space someday, you will find me out in my field in a bee suit. 
count on that.
just because we were driving through beautiful montana country last month and came upon these beehives. 
just because these are montana bees (the best bees)
just because the sky is so blue and big and wonderful.
just because I can hear the low hum of their music when I look at these pictures. 
it got louder as I went 
too close! there are BEES everywhere.
just because

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Angel Food Cake with Chocolate Whipped Cream and Raspberries

There is a lot of pressure in life for everything to be NEW.
Bright and Shiny.
The latest and the greatest.
IN. Of the Moment. Trendy.
Out with the old......over and over and over.
new new new.
It's hard not to get wrapped up in it sometimes......don't you think?

But do we really need everything to be new?

Well let me tell you....I picked up this tube pan a few years ago at a garage sale.
It cost me less than a dollar.
You will notice that it's not........quite.....round.
Just a little lopsided.
Not perfect. Not new....not even new-ish.
(I like to think it was well loved with lots of cake)

But guess what? 
It still makes really (really) good cake.

Maybe we don't NEED everything to be bright shiny and new.
just saying......
angel food with chocolate whipped creamangel food with chocolate whipped creamangel food with chocolate whipped creamangel food with chocolate whipped cream
Angel food cake was always really intimidating to me.....lots of eggs, lots of beating, folding in the dry ingredients slowly slowly slowly.
But after I've made it a few times, it's really not that scary. As long as you follow the directions step by step, your cake will come out perfect (well, almost perfect it you are using a lopsided pan...)
Angel Food Cake 
Chocolate Whipped Cream and Raspberries

Angel Food Cake
recipe for angel food cake by alton brown

1 3/4 cups sugar 
1/4 teaspoon salt 
1 cup cake flour, sifted 
12 egg whites (the closer to room temperature the better) 
1/3 cup warm water 
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar 

Preheat oven to 350°
In a food processor spin sugar about 2 minutes until it is superfine. 
Sift half of the sugar with the salt the cake flour, setting the remaining sugar aside. 
In a large bowl, use a balloon whisk to thoroughly combine egg whites, water, vanilla extract, and cream of tartar. 
After 2 minutes, switch to a hand mixer. Slowly sift the reserved sugar, beating continuously at medium speed. 
Once you have achieved medium peaks, sift enough of the flour mixture in to dust the top of the foam. Using a spatula fold in gently. 
Continue until all of the flour mixture is incorporated. 
Carefully spoon mixture into an ungreased tube pan. 
Bake for 35 minutes before checking for doneness with a wooden skewer. (When inserted halfway between the inner and outer wall, the skewer should come out dry). 
 Cool upside down on cooling rack for at least an hour before removing from pan.

Chocolate Whipped Cream
this is easy to play around with and you can add more cocoa/sugar depending on how sweet/chocolaty you want it. 
2 cups whipping cream 
1/2 cup powder sugar 
1/4 + a 2 TBS unsweetened baking cocoa 
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract 
Beat with electric mixer for a few minutes until you reach a thick whip-creamy consistency 

 Spoon onto cake.
Top with raspberries.
angel food with chocolate whipped creamangel food with chocolate whipped creamangel food with chocolate whipped cream

Monday, August 27, 2012


second grade......
I've been taking almost the exact same pictures on the first day of school since his very first day of preschool. 
I absolutely love seeing how much he's grown. And I love that when he is 80 years old he will remember that he ALWAYS requested waffles for his big day.

the end. 

Sunday, August 26, 2012

out with a bang

Well we did it. 
Officially capped off our summer with all of our favorite things. 
The cherry on top.

a few phone snaps
We fit as many of our favorite things into one tiny weekend as we could. 
hail. rain. hail. wind. thunder. 
(ok those aren't exactly our favorites, but they did add to the adventure....especially the hail. 
"this rain hurts mom!!")
climbing rocks. 
watching birds. 
chasing birds (charly, that is)

We wandered around up in the Uintas for a few hours, passed a handful of lakes, and enjoyed the calmness and peace that only the mountains can offer. 
We ended our Saturday with a stop at our favorite drugstore for burgers

Sunday we enjoyed some family time, and a back to school feast of their choice....
pizza and cake 
(both blogged soon!)

It was the perfect I'm ready for the week....maybe.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

every last drop

With school and routines and schedules just around the corner,
our summer sun is quickly setting.
But we will not go out without a good fight.

oh. no. 

No bike trail will go unridden. 
No popsicle left uneaten. 
No burger ungrilled.
We will explore every 
and stream. 
( least we will try.....)
We will ignore bed time. 
We will sleep in. 
We will refuse to wear clothing--only swimsuits will do!
We will do our very best to squeeze every last drop of summer out of these next few days.....
what will YOU be doing?
happy weekend!

oh ps. in case you didn't hear--you can now follow me on instagram
@_sheenarae ......come find me!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

looking for ghosts

When we were in Montana last month, we ventured up a steep and windy mountain road to Granite Ghost Town. Silver was discovered, and the town boomed in the late 1800s--quickly topping out around 3000 people. There was a library, a school, a hospital, churches, saloons, and houses--all atop the mountain. 
And now.....well,'s ruins. Piles of brick, lumber, and scraps of metal. Broken bottles and pieces of pottery line the streets. An old can, the sole of a shoe, rusty nails. There are a few structures that refuse to give in--scattered around in the trees--so we took some time to explore. 
And look for ghosts. 

The kids were so excited at the chance of seeing a real, live, ghost. After all......that's what ghost towns are all about, right? As they looked and looked and listened and looked for happy white ghosts, peering around corners, waiting to jump out and say "BOO!".....I was also on the lookout for ghosts.....of another kind. 

I stood on what must have been Main Street. I tried to imagine the once hustling bustling road it would have been. The miners coming home after work. The children headed to and from school. Sunday afternoons, families headed to church. 

I stood in a little house. Most of the floor had given out, the roof was sagging, and board by board, piece by piece, it was falling apart. But I could see where the fire place was, the back door, and a few little rooms. I wondered where they slept? What they ate for dinner? How many children had once roamed throughout these tiny walls? Did they decorate for Christmas? How many families had lived in this little home over the years? How many people had been through that door?

I left without seeing any ghosts (the kids thought there might have been one in the bank), but with my imagination running wild with stories--stories that could have been--from this tiny mountain town.
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the end. 

Have you explored any ghost towns? 
We would love to visit more......we will never tire of looking for ghosts.