I've hit 'quilter's block' with my sparkle punch quilt, so it's time to start a new project! To get the creative juices flowing again :) I am planning on cutting into this lovely stack of fabric this weekend, although I am not sure what quilt design I will go for....
I also wanted to include a quick run down of this weeks' bento lunches -- with the first week of school under our belt, I think it's going to be a great year of fun and learning...and of lunch making! :) My plan, for now, is to have a main course lunch menu for each month -- sort of like we did in grade school....Here is our menu for August:
Mondays -- Tortilla Roll Ups
Tuesdays -- Mini Pizzas
Wednesday -- Breakfast
Thursday -- Quesadillas
Friday -- Fairy Bread Sandwich (this will be an every Friday treat!)
The idea is to use the days as a guide for making lunches but to vary the food within that category each week ie: Mondays are roll-ups, but I will make a different type of roll-up each Monday -- I am hoping that if I give myself a framework for ideas it will make things less complicated...
Next month I will change the daily food themes and so and and so forth :) That's the plan anyway!
For Food Descriptions, hover over or click on the Picture
I forgot to snap a picture of the Quesadilla Bento, but I just did cheese quesadillas cut into flower shapes with a cookie cutter, strawberry yogurt, cubed mango and mild salsa for dipping. I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!
It's the day every mom dreams of and dreads at the same time....my oldest's first day of KINDERGARTEN! We had a wonderful morning today -- filled with smiles, excitement and anticipation! I even took a crack at my first bento style lunch for my daughter! From my perspective, it was a huge success! It was super easy to assemble and made organizing her lunch....fun! I have yet to see if she feels the same way about it :) I guess I will find out this afternoon...
Ham & Cream Cheese Pinwheels, Carrot Coins w/ Ranch, Grape Skewers, Cheese Bars
There are so many bento lunch ideas out there on the web -- most seem waaaaay too complicated for me, so I decided to just go with something simple and eye-catching :) Her lunch includes: Ham and Cream Cheese Pinwheels, Carrot Coins w/Ranch for dipping, Grape Skewers and Cheese Bars. I packed her lunch in the Sassy On the Go bento style box, which you can find in pink or blue on Amazon.Although I am new to this style of lunch packing, I am already IN LOVE with this Sassy container -- it comes with a middle divider, and 3 smaller matching boxes w/lids inside! Giving you countless packing options! I also found these AMAZING 1 oz. tupperware containers w/lids that are going to be perfect for dips, sauces and spreads! Of all of the bento advice websites I have found, I like AnotherLunch.com the best! She does a wonderful job reviewing many different style boxes and gives a whole heap of lunch food ideas! I am always looking for fun and EASY lunch ideas -- I'd love to hear your favorite bento lunch ideas! ...If this continues to go smoothly, I may start a section on my blog showing pictures of the bentos I pack, if you are looking for ideas too!
As summer wanes, I'm still diligently working on this quilt -- but it has been my most challenging yet. I don't expect it to be finished for another few weeks...In the mean time, I have another great recipe to share. I have made this twice in the last three days -- it's a simple, refreshing side dish that works perfectly for those final BBQs and potlucks we are all trying to cram into our last few weekends of summer!
Greek Summer Salad
Makes A LOT (enough for a large potluck!)
2 Hot House or English Cucumbers, peeled and chopped
2 pints Grape Tomatoes, sliced in half
1 large Red Pepper, chopped
1 large Green Pepper, chopped
1/2 cup Green Onions, sliced
1/2 cup Pitted Kalamata Olives, sliced
1 1/2 - 2 cups Crumbled Feta Cheese
3 Tbs Red Wine Vinegar
1 Tbs Lemon Juice
3 Tbs Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients in a large glass, plastic or ceramic bowl -- toss to incorporate. Serve immediately, or cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to eat.
I really like this recipe for potlucks -- it's a nice contrast to the usual heavy side dishes that tend to show up at these kinds of events. But it also serves as a simple side to your next lunch or dinner. Hope you enjoy!
I am pretty sure I can count on one hand the number of times my daughter has finished an entire homemade dinner (...one not made from a box, can or processed meats...) and I can probably count on one or two fingers the number of times she has made an enthusiastic cheer after tasting my homemade dinners....tonight, was one of those nights!!
Expecting the usual whining, moaning and groaning about how her food was not good or tasted funny or had a weird feel, smell, look, sound (...yes, she once claimed that my parmesan couscous was making a popping noise at her)....I put tonight's dinner in front of her and waited; running over my usual come backs and ultimatums in my head. She took her first bite...not a word....then a second....and out came these sweet words 'Wow mom! This is the best meal ever! I'm going to eat it all up!' It stopped me mid bite and nearly brought tears to my eyes! What!? I wanted to live that moment on repeat, forever....hang on to those words until she turned 18....I never thought such a carless expression of food gratitude could strike such a cord, but it did. -- And, without hesitation, coercion or bribery she ate every. last. bite. Honestly, the greatest gift...for this worn out, is summer almost over!?, mom.In fact the mood at our dinner was so different tonight, that I actually savored my food AND my family! My daughter was so overcome by excitement that she jumped out of her chair, skipped over to grab the IPod, plugged it into our radio, (something my husband and I do when he runs late at work and we eat together after the kids are long done) turned on her playlist of 'Old MacDonald's Farm, Happy Birthday to You and London Bridge Is Falling Down!' My husband and I kept giving each other 'what just happened??' glances of disbelief while at the same time grinning from ear to ear at the new mood at our table.... it was a great dinner -- one I will remember for a long time :)
So although I had no intentions of pleasing my toddler crowd with this meal, it turns out it is both adult and kid approved! Maybe it will work miracles at your table as well :)
Grilled BBQ Chicken: just grill and brush w/ your favorite sweet BBQ sauce (like honey BBQ)
Pineapple LIme Rice:
Homemade King's Hawaiian Bread: yes!! a homemade version!! it was to die for!
* quick notes*
I cut the Hawaiian bread recipe in half and used 2 eggs and 3/4 cups of sugar. I used a 20oz can of crushed pineapple and was able to get just enough juice for a half recipe of bread.
I used the crushed Pineapple for the rice (and had leftover) -- but because there was no juice left for the rice, I just used that much extra water and added about 1 Tbs of sugar....oh and I omitted anything green, that would have been an immediate turn off for my daughter :)
Would love to hear if this makes waves at your next dinner!? :)
It's that time of year again, when I can find bunches and bunches of stunning Gladiolus at my local grocery store! I grabbed my first stems this weekend.
It's hard not to smile when these flowers are around :)