Monthly Archives: November 2011

Word Play Wednesday: Thanksgiving Shouldn’t Be Over

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I know that the holiday observance of Thanksgiving was last week.  I watched many of my friends dutifully post status updates every day in November leading up to the big day, citing what they were thankful for.  24 days of “I’m thankful for” XYZ’s.  Lovely.  And then, on November 25th, the statuses changed to what they were scoring on the torturous and horrible custom of Black Friday, how terribly “sick” they were with fall colds, and how annoying it was to get the knots out of the Christmas lights.  Talk about doing a one-eighty.  So, when I came across this quote from Somewhat Simple, I thought, HOW APPROPRIATE.  Here it is, from Somewhat Simple (which has some great ideas for crafts, gifts, dates, jewelry, you name it, so check it out for some amazing (p)inspiration) :

"Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our Thanksgiving" (W.T. Purkiser) Image from Somewhat Simple

How true, right? After all, we can SAY how thankful we are for our health, but if continually neglect our bodies and our minds, how are we actually BEING thankful?  We can SAY that we’re thankful for having the opportunity to be at home with our children, but if we allow ourselves to be frazzled and rushed and bitter about all of the work that comes along with being at home with our children, how are we BEING thankful for the opportunity we have been provided?

So, while the holiday of Thanksgiving may have passed, the ACT of Thanksgiving should be ongoing, long after the holiday season has ended.  Here’s how I am showed my Thanksgiving this week:

1.) I have consciously stopped playing on the internet while my husband is home in the evenings.  I’m thankful for my wonderful life partner, who spoils me and adores me, so the least I can do is give him some undivided attention during the precious hours that he is at home in the evenings.  My husband knows how valuable my time is to me, and he appreciates that I am willing to give him some of this highly treasured commodity.

2.)  I have watched Christopher’s basketball practices.  I know that they’re not the actual games, but I think he likes to have me there, watching him, seeing how his skills improve.  He practically glows when I comment on some shot or skill that I observed during his exercises.  That kind of self esteem boost shouldn’t be reserved for the small number of games that his team will play this season.  I’m thankful for my oldest son, and for the fact that he’s still so innocent, and kind, and that he still likes to hang out with his parents, so the least I can do is return the favor and take every available opportunity to hang out with him.

3.)  I have dropped what I’m doing, whenever possible, to read His Majesty the same books, over and over and over again, even when it means that the pasta will surpass al dente status, or when I am folding a mound of laundry. I’m thankful for my sweet youngest son, and for the opportunity to be his primary caregiver.  When he says “Mama, sit” in his commanding, yet sweet, voice, I sit, and we read.  As much as he wants.

4.)  I have called my mother.  Twice.  We don’t always get along, but I’m thankful for my mother, truly thankful for the woman who brought me into this world, and I need to make sure that during the days of our lives, nothing positive goes unsaid between us.  Even if our conversations are interrupted by her talking to her dogs, or arguing with “Sarah” (her GPS), or when she tells me she’ll call me back and doesn’t, I need to make the effort to nurture our relationship.  She’s the only mother I’ll ever have.

5.) I have addressed and filled out all of our Christmas cards, including little personal notes for our friends and family members.  Some people don’t send cards anymore, and I didn’t get moving fast enough this season to order photo cards, so I myself almost didn’t send anything this year.  However, I think that it’s thoughtful to receive cards, and since I’m thankful for my friends and extended family, I took the effort to let them know that I am thinking of them, write notes in each card that pertains to the recipient, and sign them with a loving message.  It took time, but that is a small price to pay to show how thankful I am for them, and to hopefully make a far away friend or relative smile.

So, friends, I KNOW that you’re thankful, but what have you done, or WILL you do, to show thanksgiving for the wonders that fill your life?  Don’t let another year pass before you remind yourself of all the blessings in your life.  Show your appreciation for them every day!

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Nothing to see here…

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Well, at least, there’s nothing to see that I personally have made today.  Slacker…

Truth is, it’s been a busy week for me, and for the rest of the country, and it’s only getting busier.  Thanksgiving, holiday decorating, and a sinus infection (oh, was that just me? Lucky you!) took up the last half of my week, and now, in addition to the typical hustle and bustle of the beginning of the holiday season, my friends and I are preparing for a big event this Saturday, when we’ll be hosting the Gifts from the Heart Christmas Bazaar.  Talk about very pinteresting, many of our creations were inspired by things we’ve seen on Pinterest.  We’ll have everything from holiday goodies, jewelry and bath treats, to ornaments, bags, and wreaths.  It’s going to be great, so if you’re anywhere near the Burlington NC area, stop on by from 12-5, and check off some of your holiday shopping list.

If you’re not going to be near Burlington this weekend, you can visit the Bazaar’s facebook page and place a custom order, or purchase items before they hit the “showroom” this weekend.  If you are in a crafting mood yourself, check out these ideas for things that you can make for your friends and loved ones this year.  If *I* can do it, trust me, YOU can do it.  See my boards here and here for just a few of the ideas available on the web.

Here’s what I’m planning for some of the people on my list:

For my boys’ favorite babysitter:

Starbucks gift card, reusable coffee cup, and a homemade coffee cozy, similar to this one:

Image courtesy of CraftyStaci.com

For each of His Majesty’s play school teachers:

Peppermint bath bombs (that I’m making myself), a peppermint foot scrub, a peppermint sugar scrub and a cute little drawstring bag like this one (I’m hoping to pick up both of the last two items at the Gifts from the Heart Bazaar).

This bag, and others, available at Gifts from the Heart Christmas Bazaar.

For the little girls who live next door:

Hair accessories that I’m making myself, inspired by these:

From belleandburger

And for my jewelry loving Grandma, I’ll be choosing from some pieces available at the Bazaar.  This one is my favorite pieces that I’ve seen there so far, but who knows what the rest of those crafty ladies will have by this Saturday.

From Gifts from the Heart Christmas Bazaar

That takes care of about 25% of my Christmas shopping list, all in one trip, in addition to some time crafting and creating on my own.  Plus, it supports the local economy, in addition to supporting some of my favorite women on the planet.

Are you shopping with local vendors this season?  Making any Christmas gifts?  Making anything that I might want to buy from you? Please, do tell!

Tuscan Chicken Stew: The Perfect Autumn Dish

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Right now, if you’re like me, you’re buried in Thanksgiving leftovers.  There will be days of turkey casserole and turkey sandwiches ahead in our house, with sides of sweet potato souffle and whatever veggies can stand to be rewarmed–again.  And when we’ve finally eaten all of the leftovers, a dish like Tuscan Chicken Stew will be perfect reintroduce our palate to non-Thanksgiving food.

As an Italian, I am not quite sure what is “Tuscan” about this stew.  Tuscany is known for Chianti, which isn’t an ingredient in this dish, and there are no olives in it either, which, in my experience, tends to be the deciding factor when a chain restaurant throws the Tuscan label on a dish.  Regardless of my feelings of uncertainty regarding the naming of this dish, I feel comfortable recommending this stew.  The first time that I made it, a few weeks ago, I followed the pin and used this recipe from food.com.  We enjoyed it, but I felt it needed “something”.  So, I made it again, and added a few things.  What a difference a few ingredients made!  Here’s how you make it with my twists.

Start off sautéing some boneless skinless chicken thighs in hot olive oil.  When they are browned, remove them from the pan and reserve them for later.

Then add your onions, peppers, and a some cut spinach (I wish I’d had more leftover, because I just love to throw spinach in anything that I can) to the pan and cook for 3-5 minutes, until the onions and peppers are softened.

Add your garlic. I used 4 cloves, double what the original recipe called for, because garlic rocks.  I buy it pre minced, because it’s easier than cutting it up every time, and we use it so quickly that it doesn’t seem to lose quality.

Then return the chicken to the pot and add 3 cans of stewed tomatoes (juice and all), white wine, oregano, and red pepper flakes to the pepper mixture, simmering everything together on low heat.

I stirred it every few minutes, and breathed in all of its yumminess. The stirring also helped to break up the pieces of chicken, so that they are more bite sized.  They literally just fall apart, no cutting required.

After about 30 minutes, add your rinsed and drained kidney and cannellini beans, one can of each, and continue simmering for about 5 minutes, allowing the beans to heat through.

Check this stuff out.  Hons, my mouth is watering looking at these pictures.

Spoon it out into bowls and top it with shredded parmesan.  The powdery stuff won’t have the same ooey, gooey effect.

I also served it with big chunks of crusty Italian bread.  My guys love this stuff.  It’s got just enough spice to make it flavorful.

So, here’s the full recipe:

Ingredients

1.  8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

2. 1 1/2 teaspoon olive oil

3. 1 thinly sliced yellow onion

4. 2 thinly sliced bell peppers (green will do, but yellow and red add a sweeter flavor)

5. 1 1/2 cup diced spinach leaves

5.  4 cloves of garlic, minced

6. 3 (14.5 ounce) cans of stewed or diced tomatoes UNDRAINED

7.  2/3 cup dry white wine

8.  1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 large fresh oregano sprig, chopped.

9.  1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

10.  1 (14.5 ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

11.  1 (14.5 ounce) can red or pink kidney beans, drained and rinsed

12. Shredded parmesan to top

Directions: 

Directions

  1. Heat the oil in a large, non-stick, pot. Be sure it’s a big pot, you’ve got a lot of ingredients to fit into it. Saute chicken thighs until brown. Remove chicken from the pan and reserve.
  2. Add the onions, peppers, and spinach to the pan and cook 3 to 5 minutes until soft but not browned. Add minced garlic.
  3. Return chicken to the pot. Add canned tomatoes with their juice, wine, oregano, and red pepper flakes to the onions and peppers. Simmer 30 minutes, until chicken is cooked through, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add rinsed and drained beans to the pan, and simmer another 5 minutes until heated through.
  5. Top individual servings with parmesan cheese.
I hope you give Tuscan Chicken Stew a try.  And if you do, come back and let me know how it went over in your house.

The Kids’ Table

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Growing up, Thanksgiving on my Mom’s side was at my Grandparents’ house.  My brother, two cousins and I sat at the “kids’ table”, which was basically just a little folding card table that my sweet Grandma always covered with a festive tablecloth.  I loved the kids’ table.  It gave my cousins, my brother, and me a chance to hang out, chat and tease one another, while the adults in the family got to have actual real adult conversation (which I never understood the scarcity of until I had children of my own).  The kids’ table was a tradition that I thought was unique to my own family, until I got a little older and realized that many families used the kids’ table as a solution to the holiday seating dilemma.  Even though my family wasn’t “special” in our tradition of the kids’ table, I still smile when I think of the four of us sitting at that little card table (which I’m sure my Grandma still owns, and maintains in pristine condition, somewhere in her house).

It is a tradition that I’ll continue when I host this year’s Thanksgiving, and I pinned some ideas on activities to use for the kids’ table.  My board has a meager sampling of the things that you can do to occupy your kids while you put the finishing touches on the meal, or try to steal a few moments of those treasured real adult conversations, and there are many other great ideas out there.  I already decided that I’d print Thanksgiving coloring sheets and leave some crayons out, and this site has plenty to offer in that regard, but I wanted something else.  I thought about doing these napkin rings, but I didn’t want to have to sort through pictures, plus, while really cute, they wouldn’t do anything to keep the kids occupied. And then I found this idea. I think it is going to be a great way to help our kids focus on some of their many blessings, while also keeping them busy doing something creative.  Doesn’t it look like fun?

Thankful Turkey from Parents.com

I was given the incentive to start this craft by accident.  Contractors had taken over our home trying to complete items on the “one year punch list” for our not-s0-new-anymore home.  That said, I was displaced from doing anything of value, which gave me the perfect excuse to craft, but also took away my access to my computer, which was buried under (drywall dust covered) plastic.  Not wanting to disturb the contractors, I went outside onto the back porch, taking my brown yarn and two foam spheres (one larger than the other, to use as a head and a body for the turkey) with me, and trying to figure out how to make this guy without the benefit of directions.

I started wrapping the brown yarn around the foam spheres, one at a time, gluing it in place whenever I felt like it needed some securing.

Change directions to cover the entire sphere.

And just keep wrapping, wrapping, wrapping…

Keep wrapping until you get both of the sphere’s completely covered in yarn.

Luckily, this craft was pretty easily amenable to my own methods, however, this is the point when I realized that access to the original instructions would have been especially helpful.  As I admired my yarn covered spheres, the thought suddenly occurred to me that my round bodied turkey would not stand up on his own.  Oops.  Funny how something so simple can slip your mind, isn’t it? (Don’t worry, I figured out how to make my turkey stand up, you’ll see 🙂 )  Anyway, after the contractors were gone for the day, I went back to read the source’s recommendation that you cut a sliver off of the larger foam covered sphere to flatten it out and make it more stable (obviously doing so BEFORE you start wrapping the spheres in yarn).  That knowledge was no help to me at that point, but it will hopefully be helpful to you.

After the spheres were wrapped, a few days past until I was able to get back to this craft.  Which gave me time to figure out two things.  1) How was I going to secure the head to the body (The source blog says to use a tongue depressor, but I don’t have one of them, nor do I have any popsicles in the house, and I certainly wasn’t running out to the store in the frenzied Thanksgiving week crowds to buy any), and 2) How was I going to get my turkey to stand up?

The former was accomplished by using toothpicks and hot glue to hold the little ball in place as the head.  It took a few toothpicks, to hold it steady, and then I glued around the contact area to increase the liklihood that it would stay in place. We’ll see how it holds up the the kids, but it feels sturdy now.

Then, I got out my card paper scraps.  This activity is a great way to use up any scrap paper that you have lying around, and I didn’t have to cut a single new piece of paper.  I fixed the second problem by making Mr. Turkey a stand out of two strips of scrap paper that I stapled together in a circle.  His “body” fits right onto the ring of paper that serves as a base.  Problem solved.

I used two buttons as eyes, and cut out Mr. Turkey’s beak and red hangy neck thingee (Which, thanks to a quick Google search, I have come to learn is actually called a wattle.  Google is my proof that there isn’t a silly question that I can come up with that numerous other people haven’t also wondered about.).  There was nothing precise about this, I used buttons that came from a hotel sewing kit, and cut some scraps of orange and red paper, bending the ends to give me an edge to glue, and then applied pressure while the glue dried.

Here's Mr. Turkey with his face, standing up on his circular stand. It's all coming together...

Then, I picked out paper scraps that were large enough to use for feathers.

I picked a variety of colors, and cut out feathers using the first one that I cut as a template for the rest of them.  It certainly wasn’t rocket science, so they aren’t exactly the same size, but I’m pretty sure the kids won’t mind. See all of the pretty colors?

I hot glued toothpicks onto each feather, leaving about 1/2 of the toothpick on the feather and the other half sticking out to use to secure it to the turkey’s body. After waiting for them to dry, I arranged them on the back of the turkey’s body, and set him on his stand.

And here he is from the back:

Tah-Dah!!  The kids’ table Turkey Topper.  His Majesty is absolutely enthralled with this thing, and is actively planning an attack on it, but in the event that Mr. Turkey survives until Thanksgiving dinner, the kids can use crayons to write down things that they are thankful for on each of the feathers, and then stick the feathers back on the body of the Turkey to display.  I might even write down a few things that I am thankful for to help get them started.

Do you have a kids’ table?  Are you doing anything special to occupy the kids in the hours before you enjoy your Thanksgiving feast?  I’d love to hear your (p)inspiring ideas!

More Clean Fun! Homemade Bathtub Paint

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So, remember last week, when my group of science club kids and I exploded Ivory soap, all in the interest of understanding Charles’ Law?  Well, when our little science experiment cooled down, it left me with this:

A big pile of powdery soap flakes.  So what did I do?

I followed the example set by Housing a Forest, the same blog that gave me the idea to do the ivory soap experiment, and we made bathtub paint!  I figured His Majesty was the perfect age to enjoy painting himself, the bathtub, and anything else that happened to get in his way, with slippery, foamy homemade bathtub paint.

Making it was simple. Of course, if you haven’t already, you have to stick an ordinary bar of Ivory soap (it has to be Ivory) in the microwave for about 2 minutes.

It will grow to about 5x it’s original size, and will gunk up your microwave, but it’s just soap, so no worries, wipe it up and move on. Then, set the soap cloud out to cool.  Mine sat out for about 30 hours, simply because that’s when I got around to making it, and it still worked out fine.

As far as what you’ll need to make the paint, you probably already have everything handy in your kitchen and pantry.

All you need (beside your cooled, exploded Ivory soap flakes) is a blender, food coloring, and some boiling water (which I prepared in that teapot, to make it easier to pour into the blender). Simple enough, right?

Since making the paint isn’t an exact science, I just grabbed a few handfuls of flakes at a time, filling the blender about half way.  Then, I slowly added water (if you add it too fast, you’ll get foamy soap bubbles, which is definitely not paint), and pulsed the blender.  The source blog advised that you blend your mixture to the consistency of yogurt, which took me about 10 seconds to achieve.  She also put hers into icing bags, so that her kids could “pipe” the paint, but His Majesty is more into squishing paint and using a brush, and I had the perfect little empty containers lying around to use for this activity…

Yogurt cups!!  We save them because they are good for lots of things:  Christopher loves to build towers for His Majesty with them, and His Majesty loves to stack them and knock them down, plus we use them to “water paint” on the cement, and I use them when I paint with acrylics. Save your yogurt cups, they really come in handy.

Anyway, fill up your cups with your soap-water mixture that is at the consistency of yogurt.

Then, add your food coloring, and mix your paint.

See how pretty the colors are?  His Majesty’s favorite is “Boo”.

Then, take them to the bathtub and have a go with your fantastic homemade bathtub paint.

My husband likes to be in charge of bath time, and he said that His Majesty was a little tentative about having the paint ON him (I guess my husband figured it WAS soap, so why not wash him up with it), but that he enjoyed smearing it around and “painting” the walls with it.  When the water turned colors, and my husband rinsed it down the drain, His Majesty started chirping “Paint!  Paint!” wanting to have some more paint.  Lucky him, we have plenty left over to use tomorrow.  We used the shower head to rinse the “paint” off of the walls of the tub surround, and it came off without a problem.  I’m thinking that if it’s warm enough in the coming days, I might take him outsideand let him paint the patio.  Cleaning it up shouldn’t require more than the hose.  My kind of clean up.

Two thumbs up for homemade bathtub paint.  Inexpensive, easy to make, and easy to clean up.  But don’t take my word for it, try it yourself! And then come back and let me know how your kids (and you!) liked it.

Science Club Madness: Good Clean Fun

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A few months ago, after a full year of home schooling Christopher, I decided that I finally felt comfortable with our routine to host learning sessions.  Since I have a science degree, and I enjoy hands on learning, I decided that perhaps hosting a Science Club would be a good fit for me.  I made sure that there was interest among my local homeschool group (which also happens to be a group of my close friends), did some research on science clubs, started a science board on Pinterest, joined a few yahoo groups for science educators, and outlined a few experiments that I thought we could cover over the year.  There is a wealth of information on science experiments on the internet, not to mention thousands of videos of experiments and science classes on youtube, however, some of them don’t have a lesson plan or  lab report to help assist in applying what you see during the experiment with the supporting scientific principles.  Furthermore, without a lesson plan to accompany the experiment, it’s more of a “Wow, what’s happening there is really cool” moment, rather than the “Aha!! I understand WHY that happened” moment that I’m hoping to achieve.  It’s not enough that the experiments be visually exciting, not with the middle schoolers that I hope to help learn.  I want the principles of science to be reinforced as well.

But that doesn’t mean that the really great experiments that I’ve come across can’t be used.  It just means that I have to do some work to plan the lessons and to devise the lesson plans (I don’t mind sharing, so I’ve included the links below). This month’s meeting expanded on our study of mass, density, volume, and buoyancy.  Having been inspired by this pin,  and having checked out the source blog, I decided that our lab would involve a study of the above principles as related to bars of soap.  Naturally, I made sure that Ivory soap was included among our test subjects.  I mean, check out the blog, especially the video.  Who WOULDN’T want to see that?!

All of the participants brought two matching bars of another brand of soap of their choosing (to encourage thinking along the lines of how to assess the reliability of data). We began by determining mass using a regular kitchen scale.  Then we compared the results of our volumes by using math equations vs. fluid displacement measurements.  Once we obtained the volumes, we calculated density and predicted which soaps would float (hypothesizing that soaps with a density of less than 1.0 g/cubic centimeter would float, seeing as how the density of water is 1.0 grams/cubic centimeter).  We learned the most soaps immediately sink when submerged in water.  We also learned that careful measurement and calculation of volume was crucial to the reliability of our data, and how even a tiny error in calculations can throw off the validity of an entire data set.  If you are interested, the lab that we used is here, and the chart that we used to track our data is here.

Good old Ivory soap, it indeed floated.  That gave me the opportunity to give my explanation (I explained Archimedes’ principle and told the kids about how Ivory soap is whipped fluffy with air during the manufacturing process, thereby decreasing its density, and making it buoyant). Then I led the kids a bit further until they remembered  Charles’ Law from an earlier lesson, at which point, I segued into performing  the experiment from the source blog.  I offered to heat the bar of Ivory in the microwave, to help the group determine if its volume would increase, as Charles’ Law indicated that it should .  And in two minutes, it went from this:

to this.

You want to talk about some excited kids?  You should have heard their squeals as we watched the soap puff up like a cloud in the microwave.  They were giddy, but more importantly, they understood WHY this result occurred.  This is a pretty clear visual application of Charles’ Law, and that point was hammered home with this bunch.  They’re sharp kids, anyway, of course, so I’d expect nothing less, but I seriously doubt they’ll be forgetting Charles’ Law anytime soon. I know I won’t be.

Learning need not be expensive, or flashy.  In this case, all it took was some soap and a microwave for a good, clean lesson in Charles’ Law, with a side of mass, volume, density, and buoyancy.

(Stay tuned for an upcoming about what we did with our foam when we were done with this experiment!  The source blog is an amazing resource, I can’t wait to tell you all about it!)

Wordplay Wednesday: Let’s Clarify Something

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Did your parents ever caution you to not believe everything that you read?  Well, I was (and still am) always a reader, so my parents reminded me of this advice on many occasions.  And it’s a good thing that they did, because when I saw this little “motivational” quote, being someone who spent the best years of my metabolism worrying about a nonexistent weight problem, I called bluff immediately.

Dear reader, I don’t know about you, but I can think of 3 things right off the bat that taste better than skinny feels to me (not to mention that they taste 10x better than it feels to be “cranky because I’m not eating anything good because I want to stay skinny”.  Believe that.).  And the first thing to come to mind is bacon.  Not the turkey bacon crap that I wore my teeth down on for decades, but real, crispy, fatty, pork bacon.  Bacon on burgers, bacon with eggs, bacon on salad, bacon on stuffed jalapenos… not quite ready for bacon dipped in chocolate and candy sprinkles, but besides that, oh yeah, bring on the bacon.  Did you know that there’s even a Bacon of the Month Club?!  Further proof that bacon is fantastic.

The next is ice cream. Again, I’m referring to REAL ice cream, not the “dairy dessert” that you buy in the freezer section at the grocery store.  Ice cream, as in, made with actual cream. Seriously.  You gotta be careful and read labels, unless you want to waste your time eating a poor quality imitation.  Believe me when I say that the first time you eat the real stuff, after months or years (or a lifetime?!) of eating the fake version, your eyes will dilate out in pleasure.  If you live in or plan to visit North Carolina, do yourself a favor and stop by a retailer that sells Homeland Creamery products to pick up some of their Chocolate Reese Cup ice cream.

Check out the other flavors of ice cream that they offer here.

Or, even better, plan to take a tour of the Homeland Creamery’s farm, and while you’re there, buy a big container of Chocolate Reese Cup ice cream.  And some of their chocolate milk.  Go big or go home, right?  Don’t worry, you can buy bigger jeans anywhere, but you can only get ice cream that makes you want to cry with sheer overwhelming pleasure  at a select number of retailers in NC.  Seize the day, baby.

The third that comes to mind is a locally produced Granola called Gorilla Grains. You can only get Gorilla Grains locally in the piedmont region of central NC, and one of the places you can score it is at the Saxapahaw Farmer’s Market, which runs on Saturday evenings from May through August. I know, it’s a long wait until next year, but trust me, it’s worth it.  They often have kid’s activities and live music, plus good local eats to take home and enjoy.

Check out these pictures of the Saxapahaw farmer's market, where you can score Gorilla Grains and many other locally grown and made products.

I first tried Gorilla Brains when my friend Patty over at South of the Fork offered me some at a picnic just a few weeks ago.  I couldn’t get my hand out of the bag, literally, it was as if my arm was independent of my brain, I’d look down, and there it was, grabbing another greedy handful. Then, God love her, she sent a full bag of this sinfully delicious treat over to me as a gift.  What was I going to do, say no?! Don’t you know that it’s bad manners to refuse a gift?  I had to eat it… maybe not the whole bag in under 48 hours, but hey, I’m not perfect, and this stuff is as good as it gets.

So you see, the whole notion that “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels” is a pie in the sky dream that we may tell ourselves when we are scrambling to lose weight for one reason or another, but because our taste buds know we are lying, it’s only a matter of time before the jig is up. Moderation folks.  A little bit of bacon for breakfast, a little bit of ice cream as a snack and a bag of Gorilla Grains to get you through the day.

Or something like that…