Jan 26, 2017

Cookbook Review: My Father's Daughter by Gwyneth Paltro

My Father's Daughter: Delicious, Easy Recipes Celebrating Family & TogethernessMy Father's Daughter: Delicious, Easy Recipes Celebrating Family & Togetherness by Gwyneth Paltrow
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Last year I cooked through GP's latest cookbook It's All Easy and was surprised by how much I loved it. For Christmas this year I asked for that book as well as her others. I started with this one and haven't even looked at It's All Good just yet.

Overall, I'm a little disappointed. It is not as good as It's All Easy, but it's not a waste. I've cooked some good things and I still have several recipes I've marked to try soon. Here's what I cooked and what I thought:

Miso Soup, p 50 - didn't enjoy. It was not as good as my favorite miso soup at our favorite restaurant.
Broccoli Cheddar Soup, p. 54 - good. I'd been craving broccoli cheese and was happy to find it here.
Stir fried chicken, p. 157 - really good. My husband loved it.
Sole a la grenoblaise, p. 162 - my fish fell apart while cooking, but the flavor was good and the recipe easy enough.
Sauteed greens with onions and soy sauce, p 190 - great
Roasted Cauliflower, p 191 - alright, not super
Maple dijon roasted winter vegetables, p 194 - great, will definitely make this again.
Pecan Butterballs, p 257 - a total failure for me.
Granola - great, have been putting on my cereal and overnight oats.

Like I said before, there are still many sticky notes with recipes I want to try soon. This is a good book, but not an essential to your collection. 

View all my reviews

Jan 9, 2017

Snow Day!

On Friday we got about 2" of snow! For us, in the Memphis, TN area this is pretty rare, so when it happens it stops the whole city and we make it a big deal.

Since Bryan works from home, I don't work, and Charlie isn't in school it didn't really effect us. But we did get dressed and go out for a little while late morning. We were anxious to see how Charlie would take to the snow as he really hasn't seen any before. 

Looking out the window. 

Charlie did not like it. 

But it was oh so pretty. 

Charlie did not like being out in the snow and insisted that we carry him most of the time. Since 35 lbs of toddler isn't so much fun to tote around, we didn't spend too much time out. Bryan kept a fire going all day and on Saturday too. We still have some on the ground, but as tomorrow will be 60 degrees I doubt it will be around much longer. 

Jan 3, 2017

I fell in love with a pillow, also titled Memphis got an IKEA

On Bryan's birthday we received a very large gift, a new IKEA! Only 20 minutes away. Previously we had to go to Atlanta or Cincinnati, a 6 to 7 hour distance. I've only managed to go once before for a quick pitstop on a long road trip. It was less than ideal. 

I had been holding off going the first few weeks it opened because I didn't want to deal with crowds and I loathe the part of town it's in. Also, with Christmas and our birthdays I've been trying my best not to spend money on extra things. But the other day Bryan was busy with work and I wanted to get Charlie and I out of the house. We mostly try to stay out of his way when he's at home working, but he had a big deadline and I knew he could use some extra quiet time. Plus, we really needed some distraction. 

So off Charlie and I went early on a Friday morning. We arrived at 10:15 and they opened at 10. I guess everyone had the same idea I had because it was super crowded and no carts left. The idea of chasing an almost two year old all over a crowded Ikea did NOT sound like fun to me.  Charlie actually did fairly well staying close or holding my hand. By the middle we found a cart that I hoped was abandoned. I stood around for a few minutes watching and asking anyone super close if it was theirs before taking it. 

Since I didn't have a cart half the time it really helped in my not-buying-anything goal. All I had a picked up was a set of 4 dish towels. I had purchased a set on my initial visit and they have been a well loved and worn treasure. And for $3.99 you can't beat the price. Anyways, as we were walking I spotted a pillow that I loved. I decided to follow what Katie Bower does with her boys and takes a picture of the toy pillow for later. I snapped a quick photo with my phone and moved on. 

Further along, in the bedding area I spotted it again with coordinating sheets and duvet. I snapped another photo, wondering if maybe it would look good as Charlie's big boy bedding. Although it was a little bit more flowery than Bryan would like for a boy's bed. 

Charlie got in on the picture taking too. This is obviously pre-cart and I was starting to get tired. More adorable pillows. 

Later, after finding a cart and tossing a few organizers and some bathroom accessories in, but successfully avoiding the plants (a big feat if you know me well), I saw the pillow one final time. Between my previous sighting and this one it had dawned on me the colors would be perfect in my bedroom. I had thought for half a second about going back, but decided to wait. Knowing that I'll probably make another trip to Ikea just for fun with either Bryan and/or my mom. But low and behold, there was the pillow again! I snatched it up quicker than Charlie could look and proceeded to check out. 

It does look fantastic on our bed. I love that it brings a little more action to the room. Bryan is convinced it has tribal faces on it, even though I've told him numerous times its flowers. 

What are your favorite Ikea finds?  I'm looking forward to going again and really exploring. 

Jan 2, 2017

Books I Read 2016

Overall I ended up reading over 55 books. I say "over" because this is the count from Goodreads and I read many children's books and also the entire Harry Potter series without counting it on Goodreads. Below I'll list a few of my favorites:

Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin
Eleven Hours by Pamela Erens
How to Build a Girl by Caitlin Moran

I Feel Bad About My Neck, by Nora Ephron
When Breathe Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
You'll Grow Out of It by Jessi Klein
Let Them Eat Dirt
Dirty Chick by Antonia Murphy

It's All Easy by Gwyneth Paltrow
Alton Brown Every Day Cook

Favorite from the year: ugh I just can't pick. It was a great year of reading. Nothing absolutely jumps out as my favorite. Any of those listed above are worthy of a read.

Least Favorite from the year: Eligible by Curtis Littenfeld - I made a valient effort to finish, but ultimately wanted to throw the book against the wall, so I called it quits before I destroyed a library book not worth the cost of replacing.

So what was your favorite book of the year?