The first day of the rest of my life

October 1, 2013 at 4:55 pm

Last night’s dinner was some thrown together chicken curry.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-1

This is one of my easy go-to meals and the boys love it. I just mix about 1/2 cup of coconut milk (the kind in the can, NOT light) with a couple of tablespoons of Thai red curry paste, a splash of fish sauce, a splash of lime juice, and seasonings (salt/pepper/garlic powder) together. Then I just dump that on top some sautéed veggies and chopped up grilled chicken. I made the boys a little rice to go with it.

This morning was the first day after my most recent whole30! I was feeling pretty celebratory about it. I’m still basically eating the same way for now, but I’m going to slowly reintroduce a little dairy. I celebrated today with heavy whipping cream in my coffee.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-2

It was so good. So much better than coconut cream, I have to say. I was asked about half & half versus heavy cream on the Facebook page this morning, and my response was:

According to me, a total unqualified non-professional, whipping cream is actually healthier, but the nutritionals are not that different between half & half and heavy whipping cream. The higher the fat content, the less lactose and carbs. HC has a higher fat content than half & half. Sugar, even lactose, can cause an inflammatory reaction in some people, making weight loss more difficult and also leading to cravings for more sugars/carbs. Heavy cream and butter are more considered oils rather than “dairy” because the fat content is so high and the milk solids portion is relatively so low. Lots of people also put unsalted (organic) butter in their coffee. I haven’t tried that, but I won’t knock it until I try it. Again, this is all my unprofessional opinion based on my own research. I am always open to hearing other well-reasoned and researched opinions.

Mack and Chewie and I walked to school this morning.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-3

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-4

Today’s breakfast:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-5

I spent part of the day doing laundry. I have often blogged about the riveting topic of laundry and I know everyone loves it, so I thought this would be a good opportunity to do a tour of the laundry room in our new house. It is just off of the family room (or den as we sometimes call it) which is adjacent to and below the kitchen. There is a step-down (3 steps) from the kitchen to the den.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-6

The pocket  door to the laundry room is there between the television and the staircase. The laundry room, which is also a mud room, is not very attractive so we usually keep that pocket door closed. There is a door to the outside so when the kids come in from swimming they come in through that side door to take all of their wet stuff off.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-7

There is also a (very) small powder room off of the laundry room/mud room.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-8

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-9

Maybe I could have straightened that rug?

The laundry room and the powder room are both completely wood-paneled. It’s kind of claustrophobic.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-10

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-44

The door with the towels hanging on it in the photo above has a small storage room under the stairs. We call it our “Harry Potter” room.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-12

It’s a mess. All the odds and ends got thrown in there when we moved in. I really need to take everything out of this room and organize it.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-11

So that’s the laundry room. It’s kind of cramped and awkward and ugly, but I’m grateful to have it!

Back to the important topic of laundry. Often I make the boys fold their own laundry, but if I’m in the groove while they are at school I will fold it and just put their individual stacks on the stairs for them to take up to their bedrooms.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-13

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-14

This little area of the house that transitions from the family room to the kitchen is what I refer to as “malfunction junction” in our house.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-15

There is a bottleneck right at the bottom of these stairs…

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-16

due to the fairly narrow passageway right here:

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-17

Those bannisters (all 4,000 of them) are not really our style. We’d love to replace them with wrought iron some day. Some day. The bannister on the upper left of that photo is behind the breakfast bar and is not very secure. It’s pretty wobbly and I always feel like we’re one party away from somebody crashing down to the den while leaning on it. We’ll see! Maybe that will be the impetus to replace all the bannisters.

I also ran a few errands today. I went back to Artpool to pick something up.

Screenshot_2013-10-01-13-04-14

Then I went by Fresh Market to get a few things.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-19

I’m trying out this new-to-me brand of kraut.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-20

I got the classic caraway. They were out of the beet kraut variety, but I definitely want to try that some time.

When I got home I made lunch.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-18

That’s lettuce, spinach, roasted golden beet, tomato, sweet pepper, an egg, a pre-cooked chicken breast from Trader Joe’s, and homemade ranch dressing. The ranch dressing recipe is from Melissa Joulwan’s The Clothes Make the Girl. The recipe is:

Ranch Dressing
1/4 cup homemade mayo
1/2 clove garlic, minced
1/8 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons dried chives
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
salt and black pepper, to taste

I used up the last of my roasted beets in the salad so I stuck some more in the oven.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-21

I love golden beets because they are so much less messy than purple beets. I think they taste about the same.

That’s it so far for today.  I picked Mack up from school and now I need to go pick up Cal from Robotics Club which was after school.

Don’t forget to join in the Tampa Bay Bloggers’ Octogram challenge on Instagram!

TBB Octogram edit

Cya.

Two meals and some Mardi Gras masks

March 8, 2013 at 3:30 pm

I wimped out on walking to school yet again this morning. I know that my northern friends probably think it’s ridiculous, but 50° here seems frigid. I just couldn’t make myself do it. Of course I passed a girl running as I was driving Mack to school and then I felt bad. Oh well. So I drove Mack to school, drove Cal to the bus stop, then made breakfast.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-1

My Annie’s Organics box included a container of alfalfa/clover sprouts this time. I like sprouts, but when I was on my girls’ weekend trip to Folly Beach with my high school friends we somehow got into a discussion about sprouts. One of my friends is a chef and often deals with food safety issues. She was telling us how sprouts and scallions are huge culprits of food poisoning because they are difficult to clean and harbor bacteria. So ever since then I have been leery of sprouts and scallions.

But we were mostly talking about salad bars where the same veggies just keep getting put back out again and again if they are not eaten. In fact, I think that’s how the conversation started. After checking with my chef friend (thanks Allison!) about whether I should eat these farm fresh organic sprouts, she said, “Yes, of course! You crack me up!” So I’m enjoying them.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-3

After breakfast I ran some errands. First up was Target.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-30

Next I went by our storage unit to drop off the rest of the Christmas decoration boxes.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-11

It’s only 2 1/2 months past Christmas. I’m pretty proud of myself for not procrastinating on this.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-12

I also picked up the Easter/Spring decorations box and a couple of items out of the Halloween box.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-13

Tonight is the Brookwood Carnival and I’m going a little crazy with my outfit and the Mardi Gras theme.

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-14

Chad and I got those masks about 15 years ago when we went on a cruise and one of the ports of call was New Orleans. I’m going to wear the peacock feathers mask…stay tuned to see my matching outfit. It’s going to be a really fun evening benefitting a great cause (Brookwood Florida, a residential group home for teen girls). Tickets will still be available at the door if you would like to join me!

After I got home from running errands I made lunch with some more of my Annie’s Organics goodies, the lacinato kale (also called dinosaur kale).

My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-15

I have made variations on this salad before and it is so delicious. It’s raw kale, toasted almonds, feta, hard-boiled egg, a tiny bit of shaved onion, and balsamic vinaigrette. I’ve also made it with walnuts and just oil and vinegar. I had forgotten how good this is.

The rest of the day has been spent doing laundry, cleaning house (just a little), and who knows what else. After I picked Mack up from school I dropped him off at a friends house to play. Now I need to grab a shower then go pick Cal up. I’m so excited for my girls’ night out! So many of my favorite ladies are going to be there.

Cya!