Thursday, October 13, 2011

making new routines

We're settling quite nicely into our new home. There are still details to sort out which will just take time, energy and money (of course, there are fees for everything!), but we've already put most of that behind us. 

We live in an older apartment complex which will soon be replaced by new buildings which are currently under construction ( click on a box link & scroll down to see pictures). We are very excited to live in the new building, not happy about having to move again in a couple of months, but we are pleased to live where we are currently living. The two complaints I had about our previous though very loved St Paul apartment, was that we didn't have a porch and that there wasn't a good yard in which the kids could play. So, while this apartment doesn't have the character and charm that our old place had, it does have a lovely balcony that we all spend a lot of time on and there is massive yard with a huge play structure and pavement space where there are tons of wheeled riding toys for the kids. We are grateful for these things.

It has taken us some time to adjust to our new schedules. It has been a couple years since Ry was a student, so we have to remember to how allot time for all that need to do. He has a couple part-time jobs for which he clocks & makes his own hours. I am home full time in addition to watching a sweet boy, 2.5 yrs old, two days a week. It is fun for the kids and give our week structure. I am grateful for the opportunity to 'work' at home.

A month after we moved, a very exciting HUGE parcel arrived at our house. It was Owen's birthday week (who are we kidding, right; child birthdays spread beyond one day) and something arrived for him as well as for me! My very kind sister got me a crock pot & a cookbook to go along with it! Woohoo for me! I have been having so much fun planning what to make and being thrilled with the results thus far. Some recipes take all day, or all night, or a couple of hrs. I'll share a recipe that worked great for my family's schedule and for our taste buds.

Crock-Roasted Summer Vegetables
from Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook

cooker size: medium or large round or oval
setting and cook time: high for 1 1/2 to 2 hours

2 large bell pepper, any colour, seeded and cut into strips
2 large red onions (this was omitted from our meal!)
3 medium size yellow crookneck or pattypan summer squash, ends trimmed and sliced 1/2 inch thick
3 medium size zucchini, ends trimmed, cut into thick matchsticks; or 1 lb baby zucchini with blossoms attached, left whole
5 oz fresh green beans, stem end snapped off
4 cloves of garlic, peeled (i quartered them)
2 to 3 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp chopped fresh basil or savory (I used basil and I used more than 1 Tbsp)
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
about 3 Tbsp chopped fresh flat leafed parsley
2 to 4 Tbsp white or dark balsamic vinegar

1. Put all the vegetables in the slow cooker. Add the oil and basil, season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat evenly. Cover and cook on high until the vegetables are just tender and still hold their shape, 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
2. Serve sprinkled with the parsley and vinegar.

Owen and I prepared this meal while Aleida was taking her afternoon nap. Then ta-da it was ready when it was time for supper! Fantastic.

A meal for Sunday that I am super pumped about is an old Colonial meal: Boston baked bean (recipe from 1700s) served with steamed brown bread. Fun, right? Yes, I know. I can hardly wait.

I don't have very many great pictures to post about our new life here. The big picture at the top of our blog was taken at a family day at the Seminary.

When Grandma and Grandpa visited, we went to the ocean (an easy hour drive away!).

We explored Princeton Theological Seminary campus as well as Princeton University's campus. The below picture is at the University.

It is also very important to mention the community garden across the street from our home! We hope to get a plot in it next spring. These chickens are very friendly and appreciate when we bring them stale bread.

 Aunt Heidi visited us! We went to Terhune Orchard and had fun playing with animals, getting a tractor wagon ride, and running around.

Aleida's new sleep habit is laying and sleeping on the rug on her bedroom floor. Apparently this is more comfortable. Or something. When it is bedtime, she always lays down on the floor. Since bedtime has been SUCH an incredible struggle with her, we decided to go along with this odd desire and believe it or not, bedtime has been going okay now! I move her into her bed once she's been sleeping for a bit assuming the floor could only be comfortable for so long.

We're an hour and 20 minutes from the grand New York City. We took a family trip in on Sunday because Heidi was there! We met up with her at Central Park and had a lovely afternoon with her. We rode the carousel and played in a playground (well, by "we" I mean Heidi and Owen).

Well. There you have it; a doozy of a blog post. If you got through it all, well done. I'll try to post more frequently and less lengthy.

No comments: