Tuesday, April 13, 2010

fresh mozzarella and campfire smoke.

what part of my being makes me think it is completely okay to leave three overflowing laundry baskets, like stacked as high as it would go before gravity would take over making my mess messier, of soiled laundry in the laundry room? 'soiled' pretties up 'dirty!'

this past weekend we went camping and we have the campfire 'aromas' infused into every piece of clothing, sheet, and sock that was packed for the trip...which was lots because i like to be prepared for any sort of clothing 911 for myself and both kids.

anyway, my general rule of thumb is to go do something fun rather than clean something up. yes, i know i sound like a slob....scout's honor...i kinda am... a slob. not really, but maybe. yeah...probably. not really.

i love clean. clean floors, dustless drapes and wood. sticky-less windows, mold-free abodes. in that sense, i am a freak because i have a slight phobia of all things...bug. so i'm really good at the deep clean stuff. well, mostly. maybe not so much, but kinda.

but the clutter is another monster that i am in constant battle with. laundry, mail, and magazines top this list. i tend to think people spend too much time worrying about house errands. okay, i'm envious of the mama's that do because, let's face it, their homes always look picture perfect. a place to celebrate, sit and relax, so in the end i guess it's good to worry about getting these things done. which is why i have been cleaning for days because i am trying to become better at this part of being a grownup.

i'm rambling. it's only because i have been doing laundry since sunday and on my last load, my husband dropped a new 'soiled' one into the basket!@#

case closed. i went to the book store to peruse new hardcovers, oprah's new food and god book, the cookie counter where i purchased only coffee, and of course the beautiful and always inspiring...children's book section. book heaven.

it's good to be back!


we had the most DELIGHTFUL time camping with family last weekend. de-light-ful. it was beautifully perfect. it was lots of work to get packed up and ready, but it was so worth the time and effort.

The family is one of nature's masterpieces. ~George Santayana

my kids literally freaked out when the 'house truck' pulled into the driveway. they didn't stop smiling and it is always a learning experience to live life through their eyes because everything is so much more exciting to them.

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we made it to heartland, florida around 8pm, just in time to spray our bug spray, dig out the new mag flashlights and begin preparing dinner!

the kids' excited squeals and excitement could hardly be contained as the guys hooked us up with running water and lights in the rv's.

first off, jenn and i wanted to make really good food over camp fire for the entire weekend. good, fresh food. so we planned out a menu and a grocery list and it was so much fun.

jenn, an amazing cook, rocked out homemade pizza with fresh mozzarella, basil, tomato sauce, and fresh tomatoes. we are talking garlic infused olive oil brushed on the pie first and then the goodies piled on top and cooked in our camp site. it was so amazing with the homemade ceasar salad...and red wine.

hot dogs on the grill hold a special place in my heart, but this...this was heavenly and of course everything tastes better eaten outside.
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the next morning before our hike...
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in the golden backlight our babies played...
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wish i knew what they were talking about....
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the newest member of the family...sparticus!

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i have so many more photos to post. too many, but i'll try to weed out my faves. oh, these kids and their cousins make us so happy. when we are together like this, we never fail to count our blessings because we know these kids will grow up to be amazing adults one day...
and take care of us...ha. kidding.

jeff's goulet'
as promised, a family favorite that jeff's sito used to make for his dad. i call it goulet' and i'm really not sure if that is correct, but it is an old recipe and jeff has perfected it. it tastes fresh and healthy and it's beautifully vibrant to boot!

a pound of lamb or more depending on the meat eaters of your family! we actually use chicken breast instead.

one green and red pepper, diced
one small onion diced.

freshly diced up home grown tomatoes are best but if your like me and don't have a garden yet, one can of PETITE diced tomatoes will do. no need to drain (petite is my contribution. it's the right thing to do!)

salt and pepper chicken to taste

cook in a pan or wok. first saute chicken, peppers, and onions in olive oil until chicken just about cooked through. add tomatoes and let simmer for twenty minutes. i love simmering things longer than 'needed' because i think it melds the flavors together and i use this as a general rule of thumb for most of my cooking but i am not a professional chef so i could be making this all up!

while the goulet is simmering, you can prepare linnie's rice which takes twenty minutes to cook.

i use a medium-sized soup pot. it's my go-to pot and my oldest wooden spatula/spoon. swear it makes it taste better!


melt a half stick real butter, smoosh a few handfuls of vermicelli noodles, drop into butter and let them brown to the point where you think they may burn, and then quickly add two cups of beef broth and then another 1/2 cup of water, and one of these knorr's beef bouillon cubes. reduce heat to lowest setting, cover and do not remove lid until timer beeps.
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seriously, this is so easy and so good. we eat ours with pita bread and butter. sometimes we don't use our forks. we use the bread to scoop
up the goodness!



enjoy. please tell me how you liked it. good or bad, i want to hear!

with lots of love,
g'night!
again, sorry for spelling and grammar errors. i try not to proofread:)

40 comments:

Stephanie said...

Sounds good, very Meditteranean...my husband's Arabic and we make the vermicelli rice all the time..I'm one of these throw everything together type cooks and rarely use a recipe so I think the goulet is screamng for some white beans and a whole bunch of garlic to be added...

P-nut said...

looks like a fun weekend! i also have a hard time keeping the house clean with 2 little bodies following my around every corner and leaving a trail of toys..
my kitchen table has become my "brief case" since i no longer work -it seems to always be full of mail, stuff to file, papers to be signed, flyers to go through... ugh!
i guess i don't have so much trouble keeping hte house clean - it's just hard keeping it tidy!
all this to say, you're not alone out their heidi! kids are small for aonly so long.. days are long but years are short!

P-nut said...

looks like a fun weekend! i also have a hard time keeping the house clean with 2 little bodies following my around every corner and leaving a trail of toys..
my kitchen table has become my "brief case" since i no longer work -it seems to always be full of mail, stuff to file, papers to be signed, flyers to go through... ugh!
i guess i don't have so much trouble keeping hte house clean - it's just hard keeping it tidy!
all this to say, you're not alone out their heidi! kids are small for aonly so long.. days are long but years are short!

GraceesMommy said...

I am so with you on the cleaning Sista..it is like we are one on this one. My house is never horrible and if someone is coming over can be made presentable by throwing stuff into two or three laundry baskets which then can be shoved into a closet. For one second every couple of weeks (lately it is about once a month)it is clean and perfect..and then life happens. It is usually a deer in the field that makes eye contact with us and we put our boots on and follow it..or when my husband gets the boat out of the barn and puts it on the pond in the spring (that is how we spent last weekend) that distract us. When those things happen I tell Gracee "It is a sign that God wants us to play"..and then we go frolick. Lately though it has backfired..like when she has homework to do and she spots the annual chipmunk war being waged in her little playhouse outside and she wants to go out and stack the odds in favor of the smallest one..she has tried to use the "it is a sign" thingy! She is so much like me..I love it.
Love the camping pictures! We went camping every weekend in the summer when I was a kid and I have the best memories from it..mountain pies..yum! The new addition to the family is cute!! We have a chocolate toy poodle that is named Sammee who is 10 years old and we adore her. We recently adopted a shih-poo (she is very true to her name) who is a wild child and adding lots of laughs and poo to our house..puppy potty training is for the birds!
Thanks for my fix and thanks for the recipe and the picture of Jeff ACTUALLY cooking! Makes me jealous..the closest my husband comes to cooking is starting the grill and it may be a good thing!
I am so waiting on the UPS man today...my fabulous new camera is coming..which I am sure will be my "sign" for not cleaning this week. ♥

GraceesMommy said...

oh my....I just saw how long my comment is..I think I must feel a little chatty today! See what ya get for being away so long! HA!

Heidi said...

stepahanie, beans and garlic sound divine. maybe j can try that next time! welcome and your boy is darling!

p-nut, amen sister!

graceesmommy!! NEW CAMERA, new life. congrats! ps, i love long comments!

Tisha said...

I love your honesty about house keeping. Personally I prefer to just look the other way and go do something fun. We go to target (instead of house cleaning) so often that Jonah can spot the logo on anything. And by anything I mean even the tiny logo on a can of market pantry corn. lol.

love your camping pictures! where did you get beckhams boots? so cute!

Heather Polleti said...

OK! ....really??? you actually baked PIZZA while camping?? whatever happened to a good ole hot dog, throw a spud on the fire and call it a day??
Peyton looks like a teenager :(

Rebecca MacIntosh said...

I definitely need to try this recipe!
Laundry is a form of torture and should be used to make hardened criminals break their silence. Seriously it would be the most effective thing EVER!
You obviously made the bestest choice enjoying time with kiddos and food ;)
Love the pics.... as always!
:)

Kim D said...

i've been checking your blog every now and again hoping you've posted the recipe for jeff's dish...i'm going to give it a try this sunday and i'll let you know how it turns out! :)

now onto camping...you guys make it look incredible! the gourmet pizza looked fabulous! i'm with your sister on this one, although she sorta beat me with the "spud" idea...i'm more of the ol' hot dog & corn in tin foil kinda girl!!

well, i have to tell you, after popping in and falling in love with your blog, i took a leap and am the proud owner of my own little blog. absolutely no idea what i'm doing, but that's the fun part, right? maybe..who knows!!

Kelle said...

This makes me miss camping so bad. Just wish we were there too. Next time for sure...I'm dreaming of it. Serisouly though...the leaves picture? LOVE it. Love you. Miss you. See you tonight....ha ha ha. You better.

SDM said...

you're back!! YEAH!!! missed you!!
OK -- camping?! You really are a super cool mom! My husband & kids would love you!! Looks like you had a great trip & amazing weather... so fun!
I'm jealous of your ability to walk away from the laundry/toys -- I'm pretty much the definition of Type A personality so if I see something out of place it'll bug me until it's put away!! maybe this spring I'll work on "letting it go"... :)
I just tried a new recipe from a friend this week -- it was a catfish recipe & it was delicious!! let me know if you & your family like fish and I can forward it to you... love sharing recipes & getting new ones!!

Tammy B said...

Really, slushies and pretzel sticks? That just sounds, ,well, weird. But, maybe we will give it a try.

Seems you do your camping like everything else you do, first class! That pizza looks awesome. Did you rent an RV or a camper? We hope to go camping this year. We haven't been in a couple of years. Of course, we will be in a tent. And you are right about the packing up to go camping. It is huge.

Why oh why does it seem like the laundry never ends? My washer is running as we speak, and I have stuff in the dryer that needs to be folded. And I'm with ya on the house cleaning. I have way too many other things that I would rather do :)

Kate said...

Heidi
I love how you share your heart and life on the blog. It is such a joy to take a peek. Your family trip is precious with all of the amazing photos. The food looks so yummy I am always so hungry after I read your posts, love all the details. I'm hooked on you!!

Have a beautiful week and thanks for always leaving such a sweet note.

Warm wishes
Kate

Brandy said...

Oh campfire infused clothes!
I have the same stance on cleaning as you do. I desperately want to be that woman with the spotless, clutter free house and I swear that once X,Y,Z is done I will become her. Until then I have books to read and naps to take and gardens to plan and well...life to live!

iColossus / The Monster said...

I love all these house-cleaning confessions! Well, our house is clean exactly two times a month for the few hours between when Lourdes (our sent-from-God house cleaner) leaves until the time the kids get in, which is before I get home. So I never see it really that perfect because by the time I get in, the house is still technically "clean" but the clutter and toys being thrown around has already started.

And of course, I have to de-clutter the place BEFORE she comes so she can actually find the floor. Oh well!

Call me weird but I actually love doing laundry. That's pretty strange, eh? Must be something about getting order out of chaos. Like, I DON'T want Lourdes to do any of it cuz I do it a certain way, like I only use the dryer for about 5 minutes just to get the wrinkles out and then I hang everything outside to dry. And we do cloth diapers so that adds a couple extra loads a week right there. So no laundry for Lourdes and I also don't want her to make the beds or change the bedding! Oh gosh, I know this is totally making me sound like a FREAK!

I am really bad about bathing the kids. I know most people bathe their kids everyday but after coming home from work, I'm tired! Most of the time I ask the hubbees to do it so a couple days can go by...but heck, the baby is being wiped and cleaned and mopped up all day between all the diaper changes and all the muck on his face from his attempts at self-feeding and it's not like he's crawling through the jungles or something.

OK, and camping? My definition of camping is slow room service. Just kidding! Well, kinda. I left my camping days behind me right after college and I think I will die when our kids want us to go camping. You are very brave. Well, an RV I would do. That is very civilized. But the whole "sleeping on the ground on rocks in a cold tent?" Nope, not going there again.

I can't believe you guys BBQ'd a pizza, that's amazing! VERY daring of you. I bet it was delicious. All the pics are beautiful, great ones of the kids, and love that one with the candles in the glass jars. What an awesome time you had!

Love this post....but WTF, where the heck is a picture of your pretty face, sista?

All those food pics are making me hungry and I just ate!

Miss you and thanks for a great post!

S.I.F. said...

I just love camping and it looks like you guys had a blast! I seriously can't wait to try this recipe too!

GraceesMommy said...

3 reasons why my house will be ignored for another weekend:

1. Princess Frog slumber party in Gracee's sun room with her best friend, mini homemade pizza and popcorn.

2. Brand new camera which I swear, swear, swear I am more excited about then the day my husband came home with my Cadillac CTS...and that was a heart stopping moment...seriously I haven't washed that cars in months and there are goldfish crackers crunched on the floor...but I can't but my camera down and it is all I want to do!

3. The Inspiration Book is now in my hands and so far love the Remembered Colour page..page 39 with the black and white of Gene Kelly (he's my homeboy kind of,Pittsburgh Pa, close enough) and Nina Foch from An American in Paris which is one of my favorite movies...Cuban Cars page...and Frida Kahlo pages, only women I know that was so comfortable with herself that when she did her self portraits she actually painted her unibrow (personally I would do a little waxing first...but to each his own) but I love how she uses such vibrant colors. I am so loving this book.

So all of the above are "signs from God to play"....and who am I to argue with the Big Guy!
Happy weekend!!!

Heidi said...

joy! today i am inspired by page 22-23!!! although, the paris page should be my next inspiration for a chic shoot! :) so glad you have the book!!!!

i'm so happy to hear about your camera....life changing it is!!!! keep clicking!!!
xo

kim, i am headed over to see your new space!!!

brandy, what are naps???...LOL!!! napping is one of life's biggest gifts!!

monster...love saying that...i hear that! all of it. wish you were camping with us. your boys would have had a blast! next time.

kate, i heart you.

Nicole said...

What a gorgeous post! I don't know, it's just so...alive? Yeah, alive :o)
Um...can you even call that tomato-y-cheese disc from heaven a pizza?? Totally drooling on my desk. Which I should be working on this friday morning, but instead I'm catching up on all my favorite gals' blogs. I soooo miss camping! Well, mainly drinking beer around the fire, the waking up hot and sweaty in a tent part, I can do without.

Oh, and just let me know like 1-2 weeks in advance whenever you'd like the hat for your niece. I'll set up a special listing for you ;)

Happy Friday! Woot woot!!

(I'm sorry...for some reason, I think "woot woot" is freaking hysterical lately!)

JennyCB said...

LOVE camping! I used to camp all the time and would purposefully NOT wash my "fire clothes" for as long as I could get away with it. Yum.
Great pix, girlfriend. Looks like you're having a bunch of fun!
:o)
xoxox

Lisa Hewlett said...

Hello! I found you via Kelle's blog - both of your pictures inspire me as I learn more about photography - Hope you don't mind me following you!

Shaama said...

So I am dying to know...did you pull out your awesome Wellies for this camping trip! No picture of you in those! :)
The rice is exactly the way my mother in law cooks her rice...my husband, just like another comments, is christian arabic too and we call our G and G, situ and Gitto!
Looks like an awesome camping trip, awesome pizza....WHOA, seriously, I feel like I would have the energy for dogs and burgers and too...amazing! But then again, I should not be suprised! :) You just simply are, that kind of amazing!

Love the honesty in your blog, Heidi, makes me feel normal! Also, makes me feel like I don't need to be any different, any better, anythign else than who I am!
XOXO

GraceesMommy said...

22-23 is beautiful! Today in PA our totally bi-polar weather is wet(which was a bummer..just had hair done..looked adorable..heavens opened the flood gates and washed it all away..looking like drowned rat at this point),cold and dreary. Hmmm...I think I am heading to the blue skies and water of India (84-89) for the evening. Love all the bright colorful fabric and the beautiful scarves the women wear.

Well Gracee'S slumber party is starting and the girls have turned the sunroom into a catering business (easy bake oven and all)..at least that is what I am assuming they meant when they asked if I could help setup the wedding recycling thing...hoping they meant reception! I love this part of life! Have a happy weekend!

Anna Ruth said...

I think I want to go camping now that I see how much fun it was for you. The kids in the boots in the "leaf" storm was great.

Jewllori by Lori said...

Heidi!

What I love BEST BEST BEST about your blog is that you take time away from reality(HUGE stacks of laundry, done and undone) and take time for the extraordinary!! Our kids will only be little once, and we know how fast time goes by, so thanks for keeping me real and untamed....appreciate that :)

As for the pics of camping...jealous! Spring is just beginning here in Alberta, and I can't wait for the long days of summer to drag on and to snuggle up in our too small boler for a week of camping ! SO excited you've made me!

The recipes always seem great, I just need to start bringing my laptop into the kitchen so I can actually USE them!!

Have a wonderful weekend girl!
xoxo,
Lori

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