Monday, September 19, 2011

Menu Monday + Projects

I've really been working on keeping healthy and yummy foods around the house.  It was lovely have such a variety during the summer - berries, melons, corn, tomatoes and more.  I am excited for all the fall produce that should be hitting the farmers market shortly.  I have a list of tasty pumpkin goodies I can't wait to try which includes soups, stews, cookies, cake, bread and even a cinnamon roasted pumpkin.  Now I'm hungry.

This week we are having Veggie Calzone, Tomato & Mint Pasta, Honey Chipolte Chicken with Lime Quinoa, Creamy Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese Sandwiches, Left-over Chicken Quesadillas, Crockpot Beef Stew with Irish Soda Bread.  Yep, hungrier now.  We've also been enjoying our afternoon teas when the kids get home from school.  A pot of tea, some fruit scones, and some grapes make a nice snack to hold us all over until dinner.

Saw a gorgeous mini calendar made with one of my favorite paper companies (Graphic 45) while doing a bit of blog hopping this morning.  What a great idea and super cute.  I'm going to add it to my idea notebook, might make some for the teachers at Christmas.  On my morning walks I've been collecting some items for an altered book that I have been itching to make.  I'm planning on creating a nature/bird piece using lots little stuff and an old bird house design book.  I've also been working on prepping some backgrounds to have on hand and to use up some leftover paints and paper scraps.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

School Start

The start of school this year ushered in big changes around here.  Both kids are now in school all day which is the first major change.  This means some time for DH and I to spend together without kids and even some "me" time each afternoon for me.  Both of these changes have not be hard to deal with and rather lovely.  Others not so much.  DS going from four half days at preschool last year to five full days for kindergarten this year has been a little rough.  The first few days were awful when I took him to his classroom, even though he actually loved being in class.  This week he has been only a little shy and clingy, a great improvement.  Another change that has both kids crabby and out of sorts is not seeing their dad until the weekend.  DH works a 2nd-3rd swing shift which means he is asleep when they leave for work and doesn't get home until after they have been in bed for a long time.  We'll manage though.

The beginning of school also brought fall weather along with it, which I am loving.  The cooler weather, golden light and changing leaves have been a joy while on walks in the mornings.  I am a fall-winter girl and love bundling up in my cozy sweaters and sweatshirts to enjoy the outdoors.  After taking the kids to school in the morning I go for a walk most mornings at the nature preserve area of our local state park.  The sights, sounds and smells make for a gorgeous way to get in my exercise.  I do have to get some new walking shoes though.  My current ones have mesh sides and are not really up to walking the dirt paths or the dewy-damp of mornings.

I started a "creative project/idea" notebook recently.  The fall season always brings a charge to my creativity but I usually forget much of the ideas that I have.  This year I have been writing down the ideas along with sketches, supplies and any other things that might go along with it all.  I seem to be leaning towards altered books at the moment along with more mixed media stuff.  I have lots of "stuff" I would like to incorporate into some art projects and this notebook is helping me figure out where, with what, and how I might use some of it.  I have some projects to finish before I start digging into these new ones but I know it is going to be fun.