From The Kitchen – Some Fave New Recipes!

I have been trying out a ton of new recipes lately and have found a few really good keepers!

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The bacon makes this so good!

Last night we had a Hawaiian Pork Bowl recipe from Food & Wine Magazine. It was so good. Really quick and easy, as long as you remember to marinade it ahead of time.

It was sort of the perfect dinner for last night because I was able to get the marinade going, and everything else pre-chopped and prepped so we could do a family bike ride before dinner. Once we got home Mark tossed the meat on the grill and we were eating within 20 minutes. Quick and easy tip…cooked, frozen rice. Pop it in the microwave for 3 minutes and you have rice ready to go. Because it’s so quick and easy I can do Jasmine which Mark likes, and brown which I like, and neither one is a large serving, so we are not wasting any.

Here are a few other recipes worth trying:

Peaches’ Jerk Chicken  with a side of Jamaican Rice and Peas

Grilled Pork Chops with Roasted Garlic Gremolata  we did not like the gremolata….ok if I’m being honest it tasted so bad to me that I didn’t even let Mark try it. It went right in the trash, but the pork was so good without it that I don’t think you even need it.

Guy Fieri’s Grilled Tequila-Garlic-Lime Flank Steak So yummy!

I have a whole folder full of new recipes to work through…I’ll share more soon! Happy Cooking!

 

 

 

 

Craters Of The Moon National Preserve

We were in Sun Valley ID a few weeks ago for our family vacation, and were pleasantly surprised to find that a day trip to Craters of the Moon National Preserve was totally doable. Honestly this was probably the least researched vacation we’ve taken and we were excited to find this adventure once we were there. This is why we always stock up on free flyers and local magazines when we travel…it’s how we find most of the “cool” stuff to do in or near town.

Lava fields forever.

So we plugged Craters of the Moon into the GPS and took off with a picnic lunch and plenty of snacks on hand. Thank goodness because the theme of the trip was the GPS being on adventure mode. I swear it took us the long way around, and hit as many back-roads and dirt roads as possible. Adventure!!! We tend to find the coolest things when we are on dirt roads, so we didn’t mind. Just bring TP and food for the day! 🙂

Our dirt road to nowhere. There were stretches of grass and then long stretches of lava fields. This is where we stopped for out picnic lunch.
So pretty!

Initially the GPS took us to Craters of the Moon, but it was the dirt road in the middle of nowhere part of the park. We drove for several miles through lava fields and grazing grounds before coming across a local rancher who told us we needed to head back to the hwy to get to the visitor center and the lava caves. It was hard to turn around though because the country was so pretty, and we were the only people out and about. So much space all to ourselves!

You can see the storm off in the distance. It’s so hard to know out there how close or far that is, and how that translates into when the rain hits. We never did get rained on though.

Once we found the visitor center, and got cleared to enter the lava tube caves we had so much fun exploring. That day there were thunder storms all around, and you could see the rain on the distant horizon, we felt like we were trying to stay ahead of the storm the entire time.

First cave we went in. So dark and silent. It was a little creepy.

It really is like being on the moon. The landscape is so baron and not like anything else here on earth. I can see why NASA has used this spot to test moon equipment. Sky was convinced we were going to the real moon, and was a bit disappointed to find out we were staying firmly on earth. But, once we hit the caves that all changed. She loved it!

She found her own little spot.

It was pretty cold in the caves, some still had a lot of ice, and the lava rock is no joke. Very rough on bare legs. Sky and I both ended up scratched up…I highly recommend long pants for caving!

I was a little freaked out by how close we were to drop offs into caves etc. My heart was beating a little fast on some of the walks through the lava fields.
Team Yeatman!

We had a really good time, learned a lot, and totally recommend a visit if you are ever in the area!

We hiked to the top of one of the cones and the wind was no joke, I mean hard to walk, pushing you around type of windy.
Have some wind!
Lava rock!

 

 

 

 

Thankful Thursday

Today I’m thankful for Team Yeatman vacation time. We tend to do a lot of trips and long weekends with friends and family, which we love. But, I’m always thankful when the three of us go on vacation and enjoy ourselves, and enjoy each other. (Not that I’m thankful we don’t have our friends/family with us, just thankful that if they can’t be with us we are ok just being the three of us…although all we heard from Sky all week was how much fun she was going to have with her cousins during the second part of our trip…which I’m fine with because they are pretty awesome, and she only sees them every few years).

I want us to be each others best company, and even though I know we need breaks from each other, it feels good to spend a solid week just the three of us, and enjoy it! 

I’ll share more vacation stuff once all the photos are edited etc…Mark has a ton of great photos that I want to share as well!

Thankful Thursday

Today I’m thankful for being spontaneous. We didn’t really have a plan last weekend. We had lot’s of unplanned free time mixed in with some Fathers Day fun. We had a few hours do something before Family Fathers Day BBQ Saturday afternoon, so we hopped in the car and figured it out as we drove. And…it was kind of perfect!

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We discovered a really great new restaurant that we can’t wait to go back to. If you are in the Parkland area, or even if you aren’t (totally worth the drive) stop by Roast House  ! We had a bummer experience at our old go-to fave place, the food was just not good, so it’s nice to find a new favorite place to visit, and the prices are great! I mean $14 for lamb chop, in Merlot sauce with roasted veggies, and it was to die for good! I love that the menu, while on the smaller side, is diverse in options, all of which looked so good. Sometimes when the menu is too big it just makes it hard to decide what to order. Small side note, they are applying for their liquor license so if you are into wine with food (like we are) it’s coming! A good glass of wine would have sent the lamb dish over the top!

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After that I thought it would be fun to go see the worlds largest rubber duck that was visiting Tacoma. We were sort of iffy on this plan. Lot’s of crowds, and not sure  how close we would actually get without having to pay the entry fee into the Tall Ships Festival, and the hassle of parking downtown. We were ready to bail on the plan clear up until we parked (we are always happy to hang out at home vs deal with crowds), but we thought Sky would have fun seeing the duck.

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So glad we went ahead and ventured downtown. We ran into all sorts of fun things! There was a skateboard competition we watched for a bit,  ran into a Quinceanera photo shoot and Sky totally thought she was a princess and the birthday girl was gracious enough to take a picture with Sky, the rubber duck was cute and Sky was a bit amazed by it, and we ran into a good friend while drinking margaritas at Casco Antiguo  . Um, if you like spicy margaritas they have a really good one! And the churros, don’t even get me started on the churros…so good!

duck drink
Duck Margarita

Thankful for an unplanned family adventure with my two loves!

 

What Happened Was…

So, one of Sky’s favorite shows on TV is Naked and Afraid. She likes it so much she’ll chooses to watch that over cartoons or movies!

focus on fire

Not only does she love watching the show she’s also decided she’s going to be on the show. Which is fine with us, but she needs some practice and has just a few survival skills to learn first. Not that she’ll admit that though! While the three of us were watching Mark offered to take her on some weekend camping trips to work on her skills, she declared she didn’t need his help and already knows what to do (I feel his pain every day…I’m always wrong and she never needs my help, even when she really does!).

start a fire

I asked her if she knew how to start a fire to which she says yes. My reply “prove it”. Go outside and prove it. I totally didn’t think she’d do it (seriously I should know her better than that by now!), but off she marches to start a fire.

The problem…Mark – “You do realize you just sent a 6 year old outside to start a fire, and she knows there is a lighter by the BBQ”.

Err…file that under “think before issuing a challenge to a determined 6 year old”!

blowing on fire

Thankfully Mark stepped in to fix the fire safety pickle I potentially put us in! He walked her through safely starting a fire and explained each step and why it was important. She got a nice little fire going and was pretty proud of herself!

Step one in survival training…check! Now, had I been thinking we could have roasted s’mores over her fire!

Thankful Thursday

Today I’m thankful that the school year is over! Looking back at my NY goals I knew this year was going to be one of crazy change, for Sky and I individually and us as a family. Getting on board with the school schedule…it wasn’t easy, and I’m still trying not to resent it. But, school’s important and we love the school she’s at and what she’s learning, so we make it work.

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Thank You Poster from a 4th grade class. Those kids grew so much this year!

I had no idea a year ago that I’d be a para sub with the district, but once I took my first assignment, and ended up landing at a school for 6 months, I was hooked! I LOVE my job, and, while I’m savoring Summer Break, can’t wait to get back to it August 30th! I’m so thankful it gives us extra $ and keeps me on the same schedule as Sky. Plus, I have ton’s of flexibility.

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First day of school. 

Sky made it through the year even through there were classmate challenges and the frustration of nightly homework. She was not a fan, but she does love math, art, Spanish, PE, and likes learning how to read.

All in all I feel like I embraced my goal of rolling with the changes, finding a job that worked for our family and for Sky, and man I just feel like we are all in a good place.

K Graduation
Kindergarten Promotion Day.

Super thankful that my last day subbing (Tuesday) of the school year was back at the school I spent 6 months at. It was so nice to see students and co-workers again, and to be included in the classroom celebration thanking the para’s and other teachers that were extra help in that class. Some of the students that I had very little interaction with still had Thank You’s to offer about things that I had no idea stuck with them. Helps me realize what sort of para educator I want to continue to strive to be.

                                                                       Last Day of School!

So thankful to be able to look back over the school year and feel good about what Sky accomplished, feel good about the job I did as an employee, and feel good about how we, as a family, adjusted to school life!

What are you thankful for?