Hungry Hungry Hippie

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Earth Wind and Fire

Nor Cal is ablaze and I know too many people directly affected.  This is scary stuff.  🙁  It didn’t help that Sunday and Monday were suuuper windy.  Like 40+ mph winds!  What the heck?  Is there no where in this country that you can escape the elements?

And before you all go thinking I’m super depressed, I will tell you right now, I’m fine and don’t worry about me. I’m just musing on the state of affairs because it’s what we do as humans.  And even though things are not so great right now in our community because of aforementioned fires, it’s making me extra grateful for everything we do have (and double check that our home insurance includes fire, which is does).  So let’s discuss my favorite thing ever, food.

I sliced and froze the rest of the nourish bread from Sugar Plum bakery last month because we were going out of town and I wanted to have the option of eating it whenever I wanted to before it went bad.  So now I have half a loaf to enjoy as fast or as slow as I want!

I had two slices with both sunbutter (which I finished off) and cashew butter.

Then we went out to Impossible Acres for a(nother) birthday party.

These kids looove baby animals (but who doesn’t?).  Normally the animals are outside, but it was too windy so we all had to go upstairs in the top of the barn, which was an area I’d never been to despite the fact that I’ve been to Impossible Acres approximately 3498570 times.

We still braved the tractor ride, but as soon as they picked out pumpkins we were out.  TOO WINDY.

You can’t really tell, but she was barely able to stay upright.

Same lunch as the day before.  And forever.

I made corned beef in the crock pot which was salty heaven and maaaaaybe the best beef I’ve ever made.

We couldn’t go outside at all that afternoon, so they played with arts and crafts and Kyle and I watched football and we just let Sunday lazily slip by.  [Not totally though – I did mop the entire downstairs and then met a friend for a pedicure]

The word you’re looking for is daaaaaaaamn.

And I’d respond with I KNOW!!!!

Really and truly.  Salt is my friend.

And then on the late night (or more like 7 pm after the kids were in bed…) I gave Kyle a hair cut and did some meal prep.

The best part about cooking a whole chicken in the instant pot is that you can start it, walk away, give your kids baths and get them into bed and come back to a chicken that is ready to be carved whenever you are ready to carve it.

In this case, I still had to cut Kyle’s hair and then we went in the hot tub, so I didn’t bother opening the instant pot until later.

Then I shredded it all and packaged it up for meals for the week – Caesar salad for Monday, curry lettuce cups for Tuesday, and who knows what else…probably lunches and another dinner as well.  Amazing!  It cooked in 23 minutes btw.  I seared it on each side in ghee before putting the lid on to pressurize, so the skin could get a little texture.

I got a huge jug of broth out of it too. Probably a soup in my future…

Oh hi chocolate face second day in a row.  Just dipping into my San Francisco treats with that G. L. Alfieri almond brittle.

Been up to

Sorry to disappear, but Kyle had to fix my computer (it’s old and bogged down with 100000 kid photos) and as you can imagine, that’s not exactly how he wants to spend his free time…soooo…I was computer-less for a while. But now I have uploaded everything from my phone and am ready to dump it all on you.  Excited?

I made salsa out of these.  The plant is out of control and taking over the yard.  It’s completely insane and I don’t know what to do but rip it out because it’s literally crept out in every direction and now occupies 1/4 of the patio.

I forgot to take a picture of the final product, but here’s one of the jars (in the freezer). All I did was add salt, cilantro and green onion to the tomatoes.

Relaxing to some music…which ended up in him taking a snooze in the toy room.  He is so predictable when he assumes that kicked back position in the 2-230 time range.

And now…the evolution of a perfect lunch salad.

Kale! It was on sale last week at WF so I bought one bunch to switch things up form my normal dino kale routine. I washed it and stripped it from the stalks and covered it in balsamic dressing.

And then massaged it like crazy.

Then I added in avo, roasted butternut squash, and smoked salmon.  You guys keep asking what kind of salmon I get, so here’s the package.  I buy it at Costco.  It’s soooo good.

I ate baby carrots all throughout the making of the salad and then more on the side during.  And then more again after the salad was done.  All.  The.  Carrots.

It’s pretty no?

Oops. I ended up opening these later though.  My carb cravings weren’t met with the squash I guess.

I don’t know how these end up in the pantry.  I actually managed to stick to (what I’m guessing is about) two servings. World record in the moderation department!

Leftover short ribs for dinner with kimchi on the side.

After that we drove to my parents’ house to spend the night before Fremont.

I borrowed my dad’s YETI for my monster smoothie.  It had all the usual suspects…blueberries, strawberries, bananas, kale, sunbutter, chia seeds, ice, and water.  I brought protein powder to add in, but didn’t end up using it.

YOU GUYS!  We reached a SUPER huge milestone with OIT.  P has now reached “cross contamination free” status (!!!) – meaning he can eat things that “share equipment” or are “processed in a facility” with peanuts without worrying about getting exposed. Amazing right!  And his dose is the equivalent of 1/10th of a peanut.  Like, undiluted, straight up ground peanut pieces.


We celebrated with a WF lunch date, per usual.

He got these for free (part of WF kids program) but didn’t actually eat them – rather used them as a fun puzzle game before swiping the second half of my carrot.

Carrot thief!  It left his face orange for the rest of the day too.

I bought this as a treat for myself and guess what!?  It was expired and sour 🙁  Which I didn’t find out until I got home and tried it the next day.  WOMP WOMP.  Soooo bummed to have wasted my $ on this but I am going to try to remember to ask for my money back when we go back in a couple of weeks.

Luckily, our drive home wasn’t too bad because we only had to go half way to my parents’ casa.  P still fell asleep on the way, but was happy to wake up to a house full of aunties and uncles in the pool.  Family time!

My sissie wasn’t doing so well though, so she stuck to the corner sipping her pedialyte.


Burger time.

Udi’s bun, vegenaise (NOM), stone ground mustard, home-made ketchup, lettuce, and a beef burger. Corn and Earth Balance too.  Oh and the most important part of all…champagne.  Just because.

These crazies stayed up way past their bedtime.

Once both kids were bathed we put V down but let P stay up until Uncle Dan arrived.

He looooooves Uncle Dan.

We let him stay up even later too, because he wanted to sing Happy Birthday to Uncle Chrissy.  How lucky that my sisters married such awesome dudes.

We were up and out of the house early the next morning because we had stuff to get back to in Davis, but first, a breakfast date with the four of us at American Kitchen.  I’d been here for lunch once before and liked it and it was just as good this time too.

It’s still surreal going out to eat with Pacman nowadays and ordering him food off the menu.

Kyle got steak huevos rancheros.

P got bacon (and toast and eggs to split with V, but really he just ordered bacon -ha!).

And I got the Benedict on GF bread with avocado added.  So good!  There were a few other things that caught my eye on the menu so we will definitely be back.  It’s one of the more GF friendly places in my hometown, too, so it’s basically going to become my go to spot. Urban Remedy is a block away too.  Dangerous sitch.  I didn’t buy anything this time.

We went straight to a birthday party and then came home to relax for a second before deciding if we had the energy after naps to go to Brew Fest and the UC Davis football game.  We decided against both, opting for a tennis date instead.

It was gorgeous weather out, so I’m pretty happy with our decision.  And then we ran to the store for dinner ingreds.

Oh this was my lunch BTW.

Sooooo, my parents gave me a little early birthday present.

The new Nom Nom Paleo cookbook Ready or Not. And I haven’t put it down since.  I immediately wanted to make everything in it.  So I started (small) with a sunbutter hoisin sauce to accompany the BBQ skewers we were already planning on making.  The best thing about these recipes is that they are all GF and DF.  And for this sauce, I didn’t even need to go to the store – we had everything on hand!

Dates get sticky and thicken that sauce right up!  Yummmmmy.

I also marinated the proteins in a recipe from the book.

Kebab-ing the night away.

The onions were all for Kyle (and I made extra to use in a strata that I was making for him later).


The kids were meh on the sauce, but I don’t care, I happily doused my own dish in it all.

And then dessert!  Impulse shortbread cookie purchase at WF.  Sigh.  It’s really dangerous going there after OIT.  I am usually starving and also riding a high from whatever progress we have just made…which lends itself to celebratory buys.  In this case, it was the cookie and the cashew milk.

I had the entire thing (oops) and some See’s.  Sugar load much?

More catch up posts coming soon.

Fan club

Time for a change in my running gear.

It’s been slowly getting cooler and cooler and this morning I was full on layered. I don’t mind it though.  Crisp and chilly are ideal workout conditions in my opinion.

I used my instant pot for the third time in 24 hours on steel cut oats.  It may seem pointless to make steel cut oats in the instant pot since I can just as easily make them in the crock pot overnight…I mean there’s no need for them to be done any quicker. But as it turns out, they are extraordinarily creamy when cooked in a pressure cooker!

I set it for delay so it did nothing on the counter for 11 hours until right before it was time to eat.  Next time I’ll set it to be done earlier though because I had to do the quick pressure release (and they were hot) in order for Kyle to eat them and get to work on time. Still learning the ins and outs of the timing of thing…it takes time to get to pressure and release pressure and that varies depending on how full it is and what’s in there, etc.

The kids were happy with them.  I used half canned coconut milk, half water, and added brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt and nothing else.  I didn’t want to bother with apples or bananas on the first try.

I added sunflower seeds and shredded coconut after.

Perfect texture!

I used the instant pot AGAIN for dinner.  I know, I know, you are sick of it already.  First lunch.

When I was telling Kyle how annoyed I was that I was re-addicted to these TJs salads, he told me “Elise, being addicted to salad is in no way a bad thing” which made me think he’s right and even though I feel a little bad about spending money on prepared salads, I should just check myself, because there are worse things to spend my money on.  And these are delicious and save me time mid-week. I got two of them (the spicy dressing is soooo good), even though I could easily eat them every day.  I always add avocado too.

After lunch, I got to work on dinner.  The thing about the instant pot is that you can make slow cooker recipes, but you don’t have to get it going before 10 am.  I love my slow cooker dearly, but mornings are busy and between breakfast and shuttling everyone to their various activities, it’s hard to get everything in the slow cooker.  Nap time is much more manageable, and is typically when I make dinner – either in it’s entirety or prepped to be finished off closer to meal time.

I used this NOM NOM PALEO recipe for Korean Short Ribs.  The idea of making the sauce in the blender at first seemed annoying until I realized it meant no chopping or sautéing or anything else.  You literally throw a bunch of stuff into the Vitamix, blitz until it’s saucy, and then pour it over salted meat.

Give it a quick stir and shut the lid.

Push some buttons and forget about it until 6 pm.

In the meantime, a new cafe opened in Davis and I wanted to give it some love.  Today was it’s soft opening, and having seen updates along the way, I was sooooo excited to go in.

It’s kid friendly, and the menu is SUPER allergy friendly, with vegan and gluten free options aplenty.  And thanks to their awareness it is PEANUT FREE as well.  !!!!!  I had emailed them when they were menu planning just to put the idea in their heads in case they didn’t have anyone else bringing it to their attention, and they said they had been playing around with some recipes initially but decided to keep the place peanut free in the end because it didn’t add much value to the menu. I was so thrilled.

We met friends there and I chatted with one of the “three ladies” Julie who was as nice as could be.  She gave me a tour of the kitchen and we discussed all the ideas she had for the future of the place.  She is hoping that in the future there will be kiddo events there, moms groups, and potential birthday party rentals.

The kids played for a while and then we walked down the block to watch some trains come in before heading home.

The house smelled bonkers good.  And the meat fell apart like it had been cooking for days.


This meal knocked our socks off and was the first meat test for the instant pot that made my cooking heart go pitter patter pitter patter.  I can’t wait to try so many things!!!


Breakfast deliciousness right here.

Snuggle fest while staying calm (post milk dose) and waiting for school to start.

I came home quickly after his drop off because I realized I hadn’t pulled anything from the freezer the day before for the kids’ lunches (I keep deli meat in there).  Knowing it wouldn’t thaw in time, I grabbed frozen sausage too, and threw it in the instant pot with a cup of water and left for library.

Once again, the instant pot has my back!  Now I am definitely in the fan club.

He balanced every single animal on the boat!  [I can’t even do that]


Once again, it was time to make dinner.

Bon Appetit’s June issue had a bunch of noodle bowl riffs that I’ve slowly been making my way through.  We had the streak one a while back and the sesame dressing was to die for, so this time I gave the miso mustard dressing a shot.

I used the leftover salmon that Kyle grilled on Sunday so it was super quick to assemble once the veggies were chopped, the noodles were cooked, and the dressing was made.

I love me some udon, but I only had one packet and these kelp noodles were nearing expiration (although I’m not sure if they actually expire) so I made both.

My experience with kelp noodles is limited, so I’m far from a pro, but I’ve made them before so I knew what to expect.  They were ok, but I forgot that cooking them doesn’t really do anything to loosen up their texture.  Still good, but the steak noodles bowl was better.  I still have two more to try from that month’s mag so stay tuned…

I was very excited for dessert because right after dinner I left to volunteer at P’s school for a couple of hours.  They’re having a massive rummage sale fund raiser and it’s all hands on deck.  So by the time I got home I was needing something sweet to kick back with.

A little bit ‘o this, a little bit ‘o that.

Kyle got these treats from a Korean coworker.

Looky look!  It’s the first batch of pumpkin pancakes of Fall. I used some puree leftover from when I made this as well as home-made applesauce from the ones we “picked” last weekend.

Wednesdays are the best days to make them in bulk because I have extra time in the morning since I don’t workout before school and instead go to stroller strides after drop off.

V and I had an extra few minutes to ourselves after breakfast because Kyle took P to school as a special treat. 🙂

My little lamb can brighten up even the dreariest of days (the world is so freakin’ depressing right now). Truth be told, I stepped back from blogging earlier in the week because I just couldn’t bring myself to it.  Like the rest of you I’m sure, I was in a bit of a fog, and didn’t feel like doing anything with this space.  Bringing it here is semi-inevitable (hence me bringing it up now), but the issues we are facing are so much bigger than whatever could be said on the internet (let alone this little blog) that it feels trivializing to just touch on it.  Which is why I’ve avoided the blog, I guess.  My heart is hurting, my head is angry/confused/frustrated/all of the above, and I feel helpless.

Leftover lunch.  I finished off all the noodles with the avo and some of the chicken.

And then got to work on dinner, which was another Bon Appetit recipe.  I made some changes – used coconut milk instead of whole, used almond flour instead of panko, used less pecorino and garlic.  I also made my own berbere mix following some online directions but starting with garam masala per the BA recipe.

Never in a million years would I think to mix all those ingredients together (miso and cheese and berbere spices?!?!) but WOW oh WOW did the smell of the cooked meatballs tease me the rest of the afternoon.

I actually forgot the currants in the meatball mixture so I just added them into the skillet with the kale and radishes.  No difference.

Served with wild rice. Yum!

I feel like this was so good I could have eaten the entire batch of meatballs by myself.  Seriously the umami situation was crazy delish.

And I even managed to trick the rest of the fam into eating radishes!  They aren’t spicy when they are sauteed in deglazed meat goodness (even though you bake the meatballs in the oven, you add them to the kale/radish pan with any extra juices at the end).

The weather was perfect so we ate outside, which was a stretch.  The kids (more specifically V) aren’t ready for that level of freedom yet and she basically ended up wandering around the yard coming back for bites every so often until I was done and could put her on my lap and feed her.  Our outside chairs are too big for them to reach the table so they were having a hard time, which led to P eating standing up.  V is too independent for that.

On the plus side, she did end up eating a bunch of tomatoes and then helping me pick another 4 pints after dinner was done.  I think I’m going to make salsa with them.

I wasn’t going to have dessert, but then, I did.

And I was going to stick to half the cookie…

But then I didn’t.

Now I am going to have to find this again or make a copycat version because it was SOOO GOOD.  I’m not even a cookie person (chocolate all the way baby), but I actually put the See’s pieces back and had the rest of the cookie instead so there’s that.  It’s sweet but in a subtle way.  But not a healthy way.  Like it’s not not sweet.  And the sesame flavor is perfect.  It’s also soft, not crispy, which is how I like cookies anyway.  But not in an overly bread-y way.  It’s hard to describe, but that’s because it’s unlike any cookie I’ve ever had before.  I got it at the WF near my parents’ house so who knows if I’ll ever see it again. Fingers crossed.

And before I peace out, how about some snack time cuteness.

Hope you have fun plans for the weekend.  I’m very happy to be staying an extra night at my parents’ house after OIT and having dinner with all my sisters and their husbands too.

Family time

My number one dude is back in town!  All the hoorays!

He watched V while I took P to OIT on Friday.  Back in the saddle with his desensitization treatment.  It’s going really well and we are getting very close to him being “cross contamination proof” which is almost as exciting as “bite proof.”  Both are huge goals and as you can imagine we are cautiously optimistic as we get nearer to each.

I made a ginorm smoothie before we left with frozen bananas, kale, strawberries, blueberries, sunbutter, chia seeds, water, and ice. I also stopped at the bux on the way and got a decaf soy misto.  I do prefer soy to both coconut and almond.

I forgot his headphones so he couldn’t listen to his books on cd (oops) but I had plenty of other stuff to keep him entertained and calm.  The biggest hit was this little lego plane.  I think it was a batman thing, but he doesn’t know who batman is and called it a rocket ship the whole time.  He was so good at focusing on the step by step directions and did SO MUCH of it all by himself.  I used to see these little lego packets at Target randomly, but haven’t seen them as much lately.  I ended up buying the batman one only because it was the only option.  Meh.  I got him a mini lego drum set kit a long time ago, but will have to keep my eyes out for more now that he’s able to do them more independently.

Look at this kid.  Struttin’ through WF with his sushi like he’s a big boy. I told him he could get whatever he wanted, and he picked out that sushi all by himself. Half salmon nigiri, half california rolls.

For me, I went with a poke bowl.  They had this little mobile stand set up inside WF and one look at the sauces and toppings had me suuuuper excited.  Just check out those yummy sauces above!  I got the unagi and sriracha aioli but I could have gotten all of them. It was a tough choice.

The regular bowl gives you three scoops of whatever fish you want and the large gives you five scoops.  And then you get unlimited toppings.

I got the mayo salmon poke (3 scoops) with ALLLLL the toppings – including but not limited to, crab salad, seaweed salad, edamame, cucumber, pickled ginger, avocado, and gomasio topping.  All on a bed of lettuce (you can get it with lettuce or rice).  It was THE BEST LUNCH I’ve had in forever.  Oh man I was so into it.

He dug right in too. Me and my buddy with our Asian eats.  Who would have thought this would be possible when he was diagnosed with all those allergies so long ago.  It seems like forever ago and yesterday at the same time.

I saw this in WF and was very tempted…

There are a few instant pot cookbooks I’m looking into right now, and I have some requests in to the library to test some before buying, but this one I KNOW I want.  For sure.

And since we are talking the paleo talk, I’ll just admit right now that I got food for dinner from the WF hot bar’s paleo section because Kyle convinced me to prioritize my sanity and not try to cook for us after driving all the way back to Davis that afternoon. And I listened to him!  As soon as I saw this “won ton” flavored ground meat dish I thought it sounded divine and filled up a tub to bring home for us all.  Then I went and got organic living lettuce to make into cups.

Like such.

We all finished off the entire tub!  It was great.

I think I had dessert that night, but I don’t have a photo so maybe I didn’t?  Oh wait, now I remember, I cut P’s hair that evening and did some gardening.

The next morning we had plans to go to Apple Hill with some of my stroller strides friends.  In order for Kyle and I to both get in a workout, I had to eat breakfast in the car.  It’s a little over an hour to get there, but since we left so early there was no traffic and it was easy breezy parking and getting in.  In the past we have gone alter in the day when it is complete and utter chaos so this was a pleasant change and now I know for future years.  Go early!

We only went to one spot, Delfino Farms (formerly Kids Inc), home of the famous “walkin pie”.  We didn’t want to push ourselves, having spent way too much time in the car lately (and Kyle was still barely reoriented to the time zone – having been in four different countries, most recently Kuala Lumpur).

Still had a blast!

The apple crop isn’t good this year, which we already knew going into it, but we chose a place with other things besides picking.  Delfino has a corn maze, animals, gardens, and a nature trail.  They also had face painting and tons of food.  But don’t worry, the kids still found some apples to pick and eat.

We started with the nature walk.

Just kidding, we started with apple samples.  Then we went on a nature walk.


They ate apples and played with some other kids on the way…and managed to get completely covered in red dirt.

So glad he’s back.

I have a ton of pics, so sorry for the overload.




We even got a family photo!  This will 100% be our Christmas card.

Couldn’t leave without heaps of apples.  We were actually pretty conservative with our haul because I didn’t want to go overboard.  Pattycake was dead set on making applesauce and a pie, but sometimes he’s all talk, so I was nervous about buying 10 pounds of apples.  Especially because they didn’t even have my favorites (pink ladies or galas).  You can see my apple ranking here.

We also bought a “walkin pie” to go (because if a place is “famous” for something, you obviously have to get it – even if the fodmaps content is sky high).

Saved for that night. Get excited…!!!!

I packed the kids’ lunches for them to eat the way home, which allowed us to stay later and prevented them from sleeping on the way home.  Once we got home, they got changed into PJs and went right to nap/quiet time.

I had some of this for lunch – chicken and veggies from the WF hot bar.  This was the third and final thing I got from WF.  The herbs on top really made it better than your average chicken dish.  Nothing like Fridays in Fremont to get my WF fill.  I went a little overboard this trip, but I was ok with it since I skipped grocery shopping and ate odds and ends for the entire final week Kyle was gone.

Once I was done eating, though, I started planning our meals for the week and making grocery lists.  Kyle requested a Caesar salad that night, so luckily I had everything on hand for that.  I got to work on croutons (had an old loaf in the freezer) and watched football while my kitchen mojo came back to meeeee!

I was also VERY eagerly awaiting a delivery.  Dun dun dunnnnn.

WEEEEEEEE!!!!!  My new toy!

We spent the afternoon at a pool party, but I had romaine and kale all washed and chopped and ready for when we got home.

I used this dressing to make it even faster to throw together.  I’m like full on paleo with this post.  It’s super weird.  But the dressing is organic, dairy free and delish. I wish tessamae’s didn’t have quite so much garlic going on, but it’s all real food ingredients and made for me, so you have to pick your battles.  It’s good to have in the fridge for when you’re in a pinch.

Gorgeous, no?

Ok, not paleo anymore.

Pie face!

I dumped the apple cider sauce (basically caramel sauce) all over it and then added almond milk ice cream.

Go big or go home.

Kyle and I split this guy and it was really really dang good.  I think the crust was the best part and I’m not a crust person AT ALL so that’s saying something.

Sunday was a long day thanks to the extra early start I got with a 7 am stroller strides class.  This was my first weekend one, which was a little different than the normal classes because it is without kids.  I loved every second of it – totally pushed myself and felt super strong and empowered and left on a high (and am way sore as a result).  That said, I probably won’t go to any more because (I didn’t know this at the time) it costs extra, despite me having the unlimited membership.  Seems odd that unlimited is not in fact unlimited.  Now I know.

I came home and the kids were just finishing up their breakfasts.  I quickly showered and ate too, before heading to church with P.

So proud to have made this last over 4 servings!  I guess when you pile on enough nut butter it makes it easier.

Time to break this guy in!  Having cleaned it and practice pressurized it the night before, I was ready to give it a shot.  I’d certainly read enough to take my first step.  And since I was being lazy and hadn’t gotten my act together for the kids’ lunches, I figured I may as well make them pasta.  Fast.  While watching football and not dealing with boiling water at all.

Voila!  Success!  My first victory.  Yes, I realize pasta is a super lame thing to make in a pressure cooker, but I had to just pull the trigger or it would sit there.

While V was napping, P and I made applesauce, per his request.

It took NO TIME!

Dang did this smell amazing.  I’ve been using this for his peanut dose instead of coconut yogurt ever since.

For lunch I made a big kale salad, with miso dressing, avocado, and leftover pulled pork.

That afternoon we sucked it up and went shopping.  Finally.  First to Costco and then to TJs.  I still have a dozen or so things on my list that I didn’t get at either place though, so I had to make my way to Nugget some time this week.  Anyway, Kyle was eager to grill, so we got a big slab of wild salmon at Costco.

And these guys at TJs.

It was nearly 6 pm by the time we got home, so Kyle set to work outside while the kids played in the yard and I unloaded the groceries and started the oven.

I rubbed these in olive oil and tamari and roasted them for 25 minutes at 400.

And heated up some Seeds of Change wild rice as another side.

His purple carrot turned his mouth purple!

Hot tub and dessert and football…my dream Sunday night with my love.

Throwing in the towel

Well guys.  I caved.  Apparently it takes just two weeks of solo parenting for you to give up on financial self control.  I went to farmer’s market last night and my friends literally coerced me into ordering the instant pot on the spot.  Had I not forgotten my phone I’m sure I would have done it then and there, but I promised them (practically signed with my blood!) that I’d text them a photo of my order that night.  So I did it.  I talked to Kyle on his layover in Heathrow and he told me to definitely go for it.  And now I have all kinds of weird emotions about it.  A little bit of buyer’s remorse, but at the same time, I know for sure I’ll use it because HELLO I have a food blog and I love food and recipes and no kitchen gadget will go unused under my watch, but you know me and spending money…blah.  I think I just feel weird because I haven’t had my partner around for so long that my exhaustion is just manifesting itself in a bunch of different ways.  Anyway, to spare you from a full therapy session, I will quickly change the subject to my breakfasts.

I had coffee before and after stroller strides.  The chilled one was home-made I just reused the sun and soil bottle.  The other juice is beauty and the beet (a beet, carrot, ginger, greens combo).

We had music class and then I raced over to get P from school and brought along their lunches.

Every Wednesday is a picnic on the lawn at school after they get out.  People pack their own (nut free) lunches to bring and the moms and kids all socialize.  It took me a month and half to get my act together and pack lunches the night before, but we finally got to picnic with everyone.

One of my friends brought a bunch of coconuts and cracked them all open for us to have fresh coconut water (and then I ate the meat off the top).

Anyway, it was super fun and I’m going to try to do it with more regularity because both kids love it and I definitely enjoyed hanging out with my fellow mamas.  All five preschool classes do it (the 3s and the 4s) and it just further builds the community that is already so strong.  But man oh man, I wish I didn’t have so many things already on Wednesday mornings because it’s non-stop from the second I drop him off at school.  Maybe the instant pot will help me when I realize last minute on Tuesday night that I need something to pack for lunches and everything is frozen.

I had food when I got home.  Finished off those chips right thurrrr.

And those are the only pics I have for the day because I left my phone at home when I went to market.  It was SO FUN.  I love when the weather is good, our friends are there, the kids dance their hearts out, and – the coolest part of all right now – we can buy food for us all!  I didn’t pack anything for the kids and they chose what they wanted and it was all safe and good and they happily ate every bite. V got pizza (and took down the entire massive slice), P got a hot dog (ate the dog first and then the bun second) and I got a spring salad with tri tip (it had bleu cheese which I thought I didn’t like, but maybe I do???) and it was really really good!  I helped the kids eat first and ate my food after they were done and off dancing.  That’s also when the instant pot harassment went down.  Oy.  My friends really do love me.

Breakfast winner. The recipe is here.

With cashew butter.

You can see how much I ate the day before too.  My goal is to make the whole thing last four servings. I have to actively stop myself though, or it would be 1-2 servings.  It’s so gooooood.

This snack break at “school” combined two of Valley’s favorite things, reading books and eating (at the same time!!!).  She was pretty happy with that.  Followed by circle time and then outside play.

Where she always races to get a stroller and baby doll.  This time she nursed her doll on the go. Multi-tasking a little young, but whatever. 😉

I had massaged this huuuuge amount of kale the night before, so I was all ready to make a salad with it after the kids were done with their lunches.

Our fridge is really quite barren at the moment but I went pretty simple anyway.  I didn’t feel like nuts so much, so stuck to miso dressing, avocado, and carrots on the side.

I was definitely hungry by the time we got to my parents’ place later that evening.  We left for the East Bay straight from Pacman’s soccer practice and hit lots of traffic on the way.  Yuck. Normally it wouldn’t matter if we were late going to their house, but I had a 6:30 book signing in Oakland to get to.

My parents had dinner all ready for me so I could skedaddle out the door asap.

My bestie is an author 🙂

Remember how I visited her a few times last year?  It was a post chemo celebration for her.  And now she has written a children’s book to make something positive come out of her sh!tty experience. She is amazing.  And a good reminder to keep from throwing in the towel on life.  Because crap happens, and you can respond with a brave and fierce attitude (much like V and her broken leg) or you can throw a pity party.

I came home after and ate chocolate covered cashews while watching the Packers. AND GUESS WHAT!?!  My husband is back!!!  Hooray!  Now P and I are back in Fremont for OIT after 3 weeks off.  So happy our family is reunited.  Happy weekend everyone.