Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Silly Family Things

We have this game we like to play. Well, it's not even a game, it's a big joke. Started with my oldest daughter wanting to play "the color game". Would've been fun if we ever actually got to play it, but the joke was even funnier. Goes like this:

Everyone picks a color, and announces it. Then you go around the table and everyone has like 2 seconds to point at someone and say their color. You hesitate or get it wrong and you're out.

But hubby decided to make the game more interseting one night.

Daughter..."Let's play the color game!"

All chime in..."I'm red, I'm chartreuse, I'm BUTTERSCOTCH (see, the harder the get it)".

Now we have 8 colors to remember. Except now everyone decides to change, and we've descended into the stupidest color contest.

Hubby "Let's play the superhero game!"

All chime in with their superhero..."I'm RUBBERMAN!", "I'm DIAPERMAN!"...and on and on, louder and louder, laughing and arguing.

Daughter...."Oh, C'mon, let's just play the color game!!", as face gets redder and redder.

Hubby...."Let's play the favorite vegetable game!" Now I have to cover my ears.

Chaos, mayhem, foolishness ensue, game never actually gets played.

Family fun time at Red Squadron, hehe.

Then there's the "sentence game". This one can actually be pretty funny. We like to play speed rounds with just two people. Basically, one person starts a sentence, and the next person says the next word. You have absolutely no control over what turn the sentence takes, and it can get pretty bizarre. Like this:


But put a 6, 8, 11 and 3 year old with a 13, 15, and two adults, and you have absolute and utter nonsense (if you didn't think that one was silly). Especially when one child decides to say the same word over and this:


Dinnertime fun.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Artisan Pizza?

I have no idea what aartisan pizza means, but I must save about $1000 a year on pizza. We LOVE our pizza. It's a welcome relief on Friday night. But not for the usual reasons. See, we hate take-out pizza. We can't eat it anymore.

Nothing annoyed me more than making my own pizza dough, so once I realized my bread machine made incredible dough, I never again minded rolling out my own. I mix whole wheat with unbleached white in about a 3:1 ratio (mostly white). We have our favorites, including BBQ chicken (BBQ sauce instead of tomato sauce) with cheddar, onions, red peppers, shrooms and mozz; meatball, and my personal favorite, terriyaki tenderloin pizza. Oh, yea. We use leftover beef tenderloin we get at BJ's, with pesto, onions, roma tomato, and mushrooms. Mushrooms are a staple on all of our pizzas.

I throw one half plain half pepperoni for the little ones. One by one, my kids are moving their tastes up a notch to try the more exotic flavors. Two down, four to go!

This is my famous (at least in my family lol) BBQ chicken, with red peppers, onions, mushrooms, cheddar and mozz. For a REALLY incredible treat, lay basil leaves under the sauce. Learned that little treat from a good friend. In the summer, my roma tomatoes go on every pizza.
So even if you have no bread machine, it's well worth it to try some unusual flavors on your pie. Let the kids put their own together! Make personal pies. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A Hearty Snack

After deciding to make some small changes in our food choices, I decided to test them out on a baking project.

The changes are incremental, but I think necessary for me to feel better about what I feed my family. I got some non GMO (non genetically modified), organic unbleached flour and some of the same type in whole wheat. I mixed them in about a 3/4 - 1/4 ratio so I could use it pretty much for everything.

I also switched our processed sugar, which I only used for baking, to unrefined evaporated cane juice. It's not a huge change, but in a big family, small changes are workable.

I made pizza dough last night and the kids loved it, so that's a no brainer. Didn't taste much different. Since they're used to the organic whole wheat bread I've been buying, and we've never bought white bread anyway, I figured as much.

Today I made zucchini bread with some of the zillion bags of shredded zucchini I froze last summer. Frozen zucchini drains a lot of it's moisture when you defrost it, so 2 cups turned into one. I added a cup of shredded carrots to make up the difference. Then I halved the sugar asked for. I'm daring like that.

They looked kind of crusty coming out, so I feared they might be dry. Wrong! They were YUM! I had to stop the kids from gobbling them like cheap grocery store Oreo knock offs! The carrots lent a sweetness even my 8 yr old sugar fiend said was good.
Ahhhh, sweet success! Next, I try my hand at the food co-op. Do they sell air tight bins for 50 lb bags of organic non GMO flour?