Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Valentine 2012

We love love.
Gabe and Lydia's Family Valentines.  I love them.  Yes.

Lydia's creations for her Family School Valentines

And yes, Gabe's!

Our Valentine dinner.  Pizza crust was great.

Valentine Dinner ready.

Gabe baked the Holiday Cut Out cookies while Lydia was at ballet.  I pushed the envelope a bit with Chocolate Pots de Creme.  I used honey, all raw cream, unsweetened bitter chocolate, and a couple tablespoons of butter for good measure.  Oh maybe I put a cap of whiskey in it too.  It was almost divine with the first of the season organic strawberries and lots of freshly whipped Jersey cream.  Marshal asked how something that good could be legal.

Appropriate Valentine from a sis who loves her brother.

Full GAPS Cookin'

I suggested Gabe take some photos to document our GAPS meals.  Downloading photos off his camera today, this is what I found.
One plate of Crockpot chuck roast with aromatic vegetables, buttered turnips with parsley, and steamed peas.

Breakfast squash pancakes minus the baking powder.  Her photo inspired me.

Simple snack - organic apple, peanut butter with sea salt, and imported Baby Bell cheese.

BLT salad with uncured, honey-sweetened bacon, organic romas and romaine, minced red onion, and home-made mayonnaise dressing.  My mayo recipe is super simple, one farm fresh egg, half a lemon, 1/2 tsp of sea salt, couple grinds of fresh pepper, sometimes a bit of stoneground mustard in the blender.  Then pour the olive oil in a small steady stream with the blender going (Vitamix at variable speed 5-6) until the mayo is thick and stops whirling.  I have to stand on a stool to pour the olive oil.

Clam chowder tasted like the real thing even with substitutions.  Check out the link for the fabulous recipe that I based it on.  I used turnips, no thickener, and homemade sour cream for the milky base.  I think I might have integrated the uncured bacon into the soup as well instead of topping it.  Lydia had a hard time with the clams, as I didn't chop them up.  She'd never had them recognizable in her chowder before!
Leftover chicken and gravy juices made into a broccoli chicken casserole with a hint of curry.  The cous cous salad is another cauliflower wonder.  Raw cauliflower in the food processor whips up into a faux cous cous.

Last Saturday, Marshal pruned the orchard trees.  Gabe took a few freshly cut apple shoots and sharpened their points for 3 Sisters grass fed beef hot dogs.  They were a special treat with my first homemade sauerkraut, homemade ketchup, Bubbies dill pickle relish, and an organic stoneground mustard.  It hit the spot.

Kid's Tour of Woodland Park Zoo

On a sunny February, Monday morning the kids and I decided to excitedly pack for a day trek to the Woodland Park Zoo.  We packed our lunch, filled our water bottles, put on our walking shoes and wisely took our coats.  It was a bit chillier than planned despite the sunshine.  We should have dressed warmer, but we made it to the zoo by lunchtime and walked the park for four hours until we were sufficiently cold and tired.  Seeing the animals through the photographic lens of Gabe and Lydia a second time, I'd say it is a pretty good zoo.  They want to share it with you.  Lydia said it was one of her favorite places on earth!

Jaguar - Tropical Rainforest

Poison Dart Frog - Tropical Rainforest

Emerald Tree Boa - Tropical Rainforest

Toucan - Tropical Rainforest

Gorilla - "pooping" photo courtesy of Gabe

Giant Iguana

Desert Rattler

Poison Dart Frog

He's lookin' at you.

Impressive Toad

Sumatran Tiger

Komodo Dragon Riders

African Meerkats

On the African Savannah thanks to the sunshine!

Vibrant Plumage in the Aviary


That looks like one old, dried out carcass.  It even made a dry, harsh sound when she walked.

Tundra Wolf

Mountain Goat

Otter Speed

Chilean Pink Flamingos

Asian Pheasant

Sunday, February 5, 2012

More Rocket Launching Fun

Time to repack the rocket for round two.

Ready for the Countdown. 

One pose before take off!

Lydia is the controller this time.

There she goes, went!

And here she comes back down, missing power lines both times by a narrow margin in the descent.

Sunday Rocket Launching

A couple weeks back, we took advantage of a free science tele-class on rocketry.  Gabe made rubberband rockets that zip through the house and terrorize the dogs.  He also wrote down directions and gathered supplies for a stomp rocket.  His last need for the stomp rocket is a 2 liter plastic soda bottle.  Those are scarce around our household.  Gabe thought we'd have to go to a recycling center for one of those.  Gabe plied me with the question for the umpteenth time, "Where am I going to get a soda bottle?"  I told him we'd just find the cheapest soda at the grocery store and pour the soda down the drain.  "You sure they have the 2 liter ones at the store;  I've never seen them?"  We haven't been down that aisle.  Meanwhile, Marshal acted on the desire to build and launch a fire powered rocket with Gabe, as he had good memories of doing as a kid.  So they ordered a rocket kit on Amazon and built it yesterday, Saturday.  It was a beautiful day, and Gabe wouldn't leave Marshal alone until he made time to work on the rocket and almost in tears that he'd have to wait one more day to launch it.  Today, the rocket was ready, so Super Bowl Sunday was Super Rocket Launch Sunday for us.  Hope you can view the video and the excitement.