Saturday, January 26, 2013

Sometimes you feel like a nut

 Remember earlier in the month my mention of my mom's love of chocolate covered cherries?  Every Christmas Santa makes sure that my Mom gets her dark covered chocolate covered cherries.  It is tradition, written in stone or something like that.  An even more strictly upheld tradition?  Santa bringing a bagful of pistachios for my Dad.  So in honor of LJ, Happy Pistachio Day!  I tipped her off again, Dad (though I hear it didn't do you much good on Hot Pastrami Sandwich Day or New England Clam Chowder Day), so I'm hoping that you got to enjoy a few pistachios in Ohio today, too.

We started off the morning by with another celebration - National Oatmeal month!  Given that about two inches of snow fell here yesterday and I knew we'd be out playing/shoveling this morning, last night I looked up a recipe to make oatmeal overnight in my crock pot.  Yum!  I had been thinking about this for a few weeks now, so I did make sure to have steel cut oats on hand (otherwise we'd have ended up with oatmush).  After turning on the crock pot shortly after midnight last night I didn't given it another thought.  That is until I woke up this morning and my whole house smelled FABULOUS!  Brown sugar, cinnamon, butter, vanilla - yum!  I got a picture of it but trust me that it tasted even better than it looked.  Grant was also excited to hear that what little was left will freeze well for him to take to work this week.

Cue us trooping outside to unbury the driveway and let the kiddos run around for a bit.  The frigid temperatures have eased a bit so the hour we spent outside was actually kind of nice.  We've been cooped up in the house all week which is hard on all of.  The kiddos made snow castles and snow angels and Grant and I were able to clear the driveway and sidewalks without too much hassle.  Success!

After warming up with some hot chocolate I set out to create a couple of pistachio masterpieces for everyone to try today.  For lunch we had pistachio crusted chicken nuggets (loved by the boys, detested by Mikayla) which yet again had my house smelling scrumptious as it was coated in honey and dijon mustard.  After lunch I tried my hand at some pistachio crescent roll baklava.  This was a hit with everyone.

While the kiddos napped I finally finished up a project I've been working on for Noah - ABC flashcards.  He has shown an interest in starting to learn how to read so Grant and I are working on ways to encourage him.  While they are working on all the letters at school I figured this was an easy portable way for him to 'practice' whenever.  He and Grant actually worked on reading one of his Lightning McQueen books he got for Christmas earlier with some success.  Not sure how I feel about all of this.  Thrilled for him that he has an interest, sentimental for me as a Mom who isn't quite ready for her baby to be at this stage yet.  Can't I keep them little?

We had a fun activity planned for tonight (a trip to the play area at Jungle Java) but given some behavior issues today we've tabled that for now.  Instead I think after they get out of the bathtub here shortly we're making helicopters.  Or so said my husband awhile ago, and I'll trust him on that one ;-)

Checking out Cranbrook Institute of Science tomorrow!  Until then...

Crock pot oatmeal, super yummy!

 Pistachio chicken nuggets ready for the oven

 Ready for some eating!

 Crescent roll pistachio baklava

 This was fun - they are stuffed with a mixture of pistachios, sugar, cinnamon and cloves (ground, Dudley!) and then are glazed and sprinkled with pistachios.  The recipe said the longer they sat to absorb the glaze, the better the taste.  We gave them a couple of hours and have polished off most of them already ;-)

The lower case side of Noah's flashcards (the reverse has the capitalized letters)

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