Monday, January 30, 2012

Vegetable Pot Pie
Last Night's Dinner

Once again, this was more like last week's dinner, and I have had some great food stuff going on between now and then so stay tuned for some more food-centric posts. But for now, just let your stomach rumble at the thought of homemade pot pie. We have been buying little single-serve pot pies from the local general store, and while they are pretty much perfect, they have increased in price from an affordable $4 each to a whopping $8 each. It is hard to stomach (hardy har har) a 100% price increase in the space of 16 months or so, so I finally decided to tackle one on my own.The detail that has always held me back, however, is the crust.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Do Try This At Home

Not having graduated to an i-Phone yet, I still religiously rock my i-Pod almost daily. Be it music or audiobooks, whether it's on my long drives to NY or just while I am cooking dinner or splitting firewood, it is constantly at my side. So when my headphones started to crap out and only work out of one ear, and then my backup pair crapped out, and then my backup to the backup did the same, I got a sinking feeling that the headphones were not the problem. The headphone jack was the issue, and I was despondent. I was caught in the very modern dilemma of the cost of getting it fixed equaling the cost of a new one. Since I hate getting rid of anything with life still left in it, I decided it was time to get drastic: I was going in.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Risotto w/ Roasted Brussel Sprouts and Sweet Potatoes
Last Night's Dinner

I love risotto, and cook it all the time. It gets a bad rap as being labor intensive but if you keep your eye on it, it allows you time to prep and cook your sides between stirring. It is another one of those basic dishes that welcomes all types of additions. Last night I added sun-dried tomatoes and threw in some peas and leeks, and it was delicious.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Fire Station Play Tent
This Week's Apartment Therapy Post

This past week I featured an amazingly clever play tent that uses a card table for support. This woman has mad sewing skills but I think this concept can be dumbed down considerably for the rest of us and still have a cool result. Check out the post at Apartment Therapy.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Baking Bread

Baking your own bread has a mystique about it that is partly earned, partly not. The traditional way of doing it is a bit of a process, with double-rises and kneading and whatnot. However, I know people who do it often enough and they report it is like anything else, it gets easier and almost automatic with practice. Still, I was intimidated enough to never give it a shot until I found this much easier way, which is truly amazing, and easy enough that I sometimes find myself making bread once or twice a week during the winter. Using this method I have made many loaves and they always get rave reviews, which I bask in while modestly saying pretentious crap like 'Well, I think the crumb could have a bit more body' or 'Yes, fortunately the gluten cloak really came forward on this loaf.' I have no idea what I am talking about but it is technical enough that no one wants to reveal their own ignorance so they usually just agree and stuff their face with another piece.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Self Pity is Stupid When Your Job is Awesome

I recently was forwarded an article titled Lament of the stay-at-home dad and was asked if I could relate. No, I couldn't. In fact, I sort of wanted to smack the writer in the chops. The guy went on about feeling the stigma of being a SAHD. My response, posted on Facebook was:

Not yet--Olive is pretty content most of the time. Plus I have yet to feel any 'stigma'--most of what I get is envious looks, from both men and women. Maybe this guy has a time machine and hangs out in 1957 but I never get the sense that we are looked down upon. I sometimes feel it is a stereotype perpetuated by stay at home dads themselves so they can sell articles and books about being a stay at home dad fighting the good fight and bucking the system etc. Without anyone demonizing us, what makes us interesting/special/extraordinary? Why would anyone buy his freelance article if there really was no one looking down on his choice to stay at home? All of the 9-5 business execs and wall street types drinking their three martini lunches in Northampton, MA must really give him a hard time. Maybe if he lived someplace more progressive he would catch less flack.