Sunday, February 24, 2013

Eat Your Kale

I keep seeing articles on the benefits of Kale.  It truly is a superfood.  Kale contains large amounts of Vitamins A, C, and K.  It contains Thiamine, Riboflavin, Niacin, Folate, Iron, Magnesium, Manganese and fiber.  Kale contains sulforaphane which is a chemical with anti-cancer properties, as well as indole-3-carbinol, which boosts DNA cell repair and may block the growth of cancer cells.  It also contains bile acid sequestrates which have been shown to lower cholesterol and decrease the absorption of fat.  (And why am I not eating this by the pound?).  

I've been watching the Rachel Ray show on weekday afternoons before picking up the kids from school.  I tried a pasta recipe this week that included kale, but didn't call for the whole bunch.  She had made kale chips on a previous show, so I decided to use the leftover kale to make chips.  My sons loved them.  On our 2nd batch, my older son said he wanted one more, then proceeded to eat 1/2 the bowl!  It is quite simple to make kale chips and much more inexpensive than buying them at the store, as I've seen small bags of kale chips priced at $5.00.  


Cut the leaves from the white fleshy part of the stem. 
Wash and dry the leaves.  (I used a salad spinner and they got nice and dry).  Spread the leaves (I used curly leaved kale) on a cooking sheet in a single layer.  
Sprinkle lightly with olive oil and a little salt.  (I used sea salt).
Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes.  Leaves will be nice and green and start to brown on the edges.


Saturday, February 23, 2013

National Margarita Day - 2/22/12

Chili's Presidential Margarita

School vacation week is nearly over.  We stayed home, did some reading, googling and entertaining.  My daughter came down from Saugus, MA and spent part of the week with us and everyone had a blast.  She was going home on Friday, so I took her out to lunch at Chili's.  

After we got home I read all over Facebook that Friday was National Margarita Day.  So glad we were able to partake in one!  

Did you have yours??  What's your favorite kind of margarita?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy, Happy Valentine's Day!

This is the perfect day to say "I love you" with flowers, candy, a night out for dinner, or a night in for dinner.  Champagne, a naughty nighty, the choices are endless.  My husband and I normally stay in and with the kids lurking around, it's hard sometimes to find 'us' time.  But while I was at the market this morning, I began to spontaneously put things in the carriage as I decided on the spot to treat my husband to a nice, romantic dinner at home.  

So tonight, after the boys have their dinner, my husband and I will feast on a spur of the moment surf and turf Valentine's Day dinner consisting of stuffed lobster tails, filet mignon with sautéed mushrooms and onions, green beans, baked potatoes and strawberries dipped in chocolate.  And the cold bottle of champagne chilling in the fridge.  


xoxo  Happy Valentine's Day!  xoxo

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

PLAY, Love & Laugh...

Play with your kids.  Grow 'young' with them, love them with all your heart and laugh with each other every day.   Don't make the mistake of saying 'we'll do it tomorrow'.  Take a break from life's craziness by grabbing onto opportunities and making the most of them.  

They are only children for a little while, evolving into young men in women in what seems like a blink of an eye.   Play, love, and laugh.   Make memories that will last a lifetime!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Blizzard Blast Equals Family Fun

Sledding at Triggs, 20 years ago - my daughter captured this action
shot where my husband & I hit a bump and went flying!
Three days post-blizzard.  It’s Monday and schools are closed to allow more time for the plows to finish clearing roads and school parking lots.  When I was growing up, it seemed we had a lot of snow throughout the winter, from the end of November through March.  I remember walking to school in my winter boots and spending a lot of time at Triggs, the local golf course, sledding on a big hill to the side of the parking lot there.  In recent years, we have had less and less snowfall but, nevertheless, I buy snow boots for my sons every year.  And this year, we actually needed them.  

I have to confess, I was looking forward to a big snowstorm and enjoying the family time we would share together.  We had plenty of food, drinks and would have some fun in the snow!  The 2013 blizzard began early on Friday as just some light snow, but by evening the wind had picked up and snow was really coming down.  The lights flickered over the course of few hours.  At one point electricity went out completely for just long enough to cause us to have to reset the clocks, but it came back on after several seconds and stayed on.  We all cuddled on the couch and watched a TV special about the Blizzard of ‘78’ which crippled Rhode Island exactly 35 years and a day from this “Nemo” Blizzard.

While everyone still slept on Saturday morning, I shoveled a bit of the front walk and went for a neighborhood stroll.  It looked abandoned, with an occasional plow and people here and there beginning to dig out of 2 feet of snow.  I passed a friend’s house where she and her husband were shoveling.  We chatted, agreed to meet up later for drinks and I trudged back home.  

My husband paid a couple of neighborhood kids to shovel the walk and driveway and then after lunch we bundled up the boys and all went outside to play, clear a little more snow and drink lemon drop martinis!   My friend on the other street came by for a drink, and we joked with the city guy supervising the plow truck who enviously eyed our martinis.   I took photos of my husband and sons goofing off in the snow.   After a hearty dinner of a delicious beef stew, we all passed out from exhaustion and FUN!  

Thanks Nemo, you really weren’t so bad…

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Winter Storm, I Mean Blizzard...Nemo? Who Names These Storms?

Preparing for a blizzard.  They are calling it Winter Storm Nemo.  Nemo?  He was a cute little clown fish trying to find his way home.  Who names these storms anyway? 

There is plenty of food, water (vodka and lemons).  We have a gas stove, gas hot water and heat.   We have a flashlight, batteries and candles.  We have a portable generator in our shed which will keep our refrigerators and some small appliances running.  The shovels are in the foyer, along with a brush to clean off the cars.  My husband is still out of commission after a botched outpatient surgical procedure so the shoveling duties will fall exclusively on me with a little help from my sons.   I will also have to shovel out the neighbor as well as she is in her 90’s and has a heart condition.  But, at least the errands are done, and we are as prepared as we can be, so now we wait. 

National Guard plowing us out after the Blizzard of '78'
Another Blizzard of ‘78’?  I was a sophomore in high school at the time.  The all girl, Catholic high school I attended was about 3 1/2 miles from my home and for some reason, I was one of the last few students at school on February 7, 1978.  I don’t quite remember why, but I’m thinking the city bus I would sometimes take home didn’t come.  A couple of the girls decided to stay at the convent with the nuns and the rest of us decided to take our chances and walk.  No way were we staying at the convent for God knows how long (it wound up being a week!).  We walked a block out onto the main street where the bus would pick us up.  The  snow was falling heavily and the wind kept whipping the snow around.   A couple of tenths of a mile into our trek, a pickup truck stopped and let us all hop in the back.  He drove us from Smith Street to the intersection of Mount Pleasant Avenue which was approximately 2 ½ miles.   And I walked the last mile home where I rode out the storm with the rest of my family.  (Maybe I should have stayed with the nuns)! 
We had to shovel a path for Jason to do his business!  He didn't like the snow!

This afternoon, 35 years later, the automated call from the school department came, announcing no school tomorrow.   The Nightly News revealed that Jim Cantore from The Weather Channel is in Boston.  I always say when Jim Cantore comes to town, it’s time to get out of town.  He only goes to where the storms are expected to be the worst.  So after a Dunkin Donut and post office run early tomorrow morning, we will be hunkered down, weathering another historic storm, drinking lemon drops and watching Jim Cantore on The Weather Channel if we don’t lose power!  And shoveling.  A lot of shoveling...  

Stay safe everyone!