Happy Halloween!

Lots of treats and candy floating around the office today- I'm partaking in all of it!
Have a great Halloween!
Joshua suggested we dress as pajama people and I wanna play games tonight. I also suggested to my neighbor that we dress up her cats and trick-or-treat them around the apartment building. Hopefully they all come true :)

Fall Farro Salad

The other day I became fixated on farro. Someone brought in a farro salad for a lunch and learn at work and I've been determined to make my own ever since. Farro is just another type of grain but I love the meaty texture it has and I think it goes really well with sweet vegetables.
Hence the Fall Farro Salad, it is scrumptious & makes up with few dishes and not much work.

Fall Farro Salad:

recipe from here

3 delicate squash; cubed (skin is really thin so you can leave it on)
1 pint cherry tomatoes
olive oil
1 1/2 cup farro
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp fresh thyme; chopped
1/4-1/2 cup shaved parmesan
handful or two or arugula
S&P to taste

preheat oven to 425 degrees F

1   place squash and tomatoes in a baking pan and drizzle with olive oil
2   bake for 25-30 minutes, squash should be tender and easy to pierce with a  fork
3   meanwhile place farro, red pepper flakes and salt in a pot
4   fill with water to 1" above the farro
5   bring to a simmer and reduce heat to low, cook for 15-20 minutes, farro should be al dente
6   drain farro and pour into pan with squash
7   mix in thyme, arugula, S&P, and top with parmesan


Homemade Ghosts

My sister sent me a photo of her chandelier covered in the little toilet paper ghosts and asked if I'd put mine up yet. I'd forgotten all about those ghosts. My mom used to hang them from our dining room chandelier. I dislike holiday decorations, mostly, but these little guys I've always loved.

Her sending me that photo made me remember all that so I had to make my own now too!

They're very simple

toilet paper
string or rubberband
paint or permanent marker

I used 9 squares of toilet paper per ghost-
3 sheets balled up make the head

then I took 2 3-sheet lengths and
draped them over the head

gather up the hanging toilet paper
under the head and tie it up

paint little eyes and a ghouly
mouth on him
repeat until you have a bundle
of cute little ghosts

I then went outside and collected leaves
tied them to the string I was going to
use to hang all my ghosts on

looped my ghosts by the neck onto the string
and strung it up over our window

Thanks sis for reminding me to make them!
Happy almost Halloween!


Too much

Life has just felt like too much for the past 2 weeks. We've both been swamped at work and accidentally said yes to going to everything. We've expected too much from ourselves lately and it was so exhausting.

Friday we went out with friends, it was pretty chill and easy but still after a 60 hour week it takes a toll. So Saturday we did nothing.
And by 11:30 pm I had been outside once to walk to the grocery store and  hubs had been out twice- grocery store and movie store. We had pancakes, then pizza, then grilled cheeses. At 11:30 pm I made brownies and we signed up for that free week of Hulu plus and watched New Girl.
The best part was we didn't feel bad about it one bit :)

We finished the weekend off well though on Sunday by going out to brunch and beers with friends from Cincinnati that were visiting the NW and then to play games at a bar with some friends. Where we got nachos and a burger :)

Starting off Monday right though by hitting up barre class and running!

A Hubs dinner

This is Joshua's first recipe appearance on our blog! He's very proud of it & he should be!
He made me dinner the other night and candles along with my favorite champagne. It was lovely.

I thought the way he found the recipe was cute so I wanted to share it:
When I asked him how he found the recipe he said he google searched,
romantic winter dinners (he said they all had a lot of meat)
romanic winter dinners for her (he said they still all had a lot of meat)
romantic winter dinner (said they had a lot of cheese which doesn't sound romantic)
romantic vegetarian dinner (and he finally found one)

Chipotle Glazed Butternut Squash
with Cilantro Lime Rice:

2-3 lbs butternut; peeled, seeded, cut into cubes
1/2 cup olive oil
2 jalapenos; chopped
2 1/2 tbs chipotle cooking sauce
2 cloves garlic; minced
1 tbs honey
S&P to taste

1 1/2 cups brown basmati rice, cooked
1 lime; juiced
1 lemon; juiced
1/2 cup cilantro; chopped
1 tbs butter
Salt to taste

black beans

preheat oven to 350 degrees F
1   place squash in a 9x13 baking dish
2   combine olive oil, jalapenos, chipotle sauce, garlic, honey, S&P
3   pour glaze over butternut squash and bake 45-55 minutes,
     squash should be tender when pierced with a fork
4   make rice and stir in lime and lemon juice, cilantro, butter and a little salt
5   heat up black beans
5   plate the rice and top with the black beans and then add squash and drizzle
    in some of the glaze, top with cilantro
He actually combined and altered 2 recipes to come up with this one. I was very impressed and have now informed him this is his signature dish and that I need to consume it weekly :)
Seriously! This turned out amazing!


Bearcats & Bonfires

Saturday was full of new people. We started off at 9am! We went to watch the UC Bearcats play UCONN with the new UC alumni group that is starting in Seattle. There were only a handful of us at this event but it we destroyed in the game, reminisced a little, learned a little about each other's stories and met, hopefully, some new friends.


Then that night we drove out to a co-workers house & land where they have horses, goats, dogs, kitties and a large bonfire. Joshua got to meet some of my co-workers and we spent the night eating, drinking, setting things on fire, wearing mustaches, and playing guitar. It was very wonderful relaxing night.


Pumpkin Carvers

they look like their souls are being sucked out by dementors, creepy but kinda neat

This week we got together with our small group to potluck, worship, and carve pumpkins. It quickly became a mess of seeds and goop but it was really fun to see what everyone came up with. I love that some people go traditional while some go abstract or carve in a more painterly fashion.

They all ended up fabulous & the night was a success!


Soaking it in

Sunday night we headed over to West Seattle to have a fire with some friends. Quality time definitely comes in the form of cooking exploding sausages over a fire, lounging on blankets in the sun's last rays, watching the sun set over the ocean, and finishing the night off back at their fire drinking brandy and wine.
Joshua's selfie skill in action

It was restorative, warm, and a great way to catch
some of the sun's rays before we lose them to rain.


Apple Picking!!!


 This Saturday we soaked up a bunch of gorgeous October sunshine on the Jones Orchard. My family used to go apple picking and we'd climb trees, shine apples on our jeans, sample way too many apples one bite each, and then go home and make applesauce.

The farm was beautiful that day with lots of light filtering through creating
textures and mountains slowly revealing themselves through the morning fog.

 I'm camouflaged :)

I've been wanting to share this experience with Joshua for awhile. Washington grows a lot of apples but most don't let you pick them (they actually want to use it as a business, pssh) But at a friend's recommendation we headed to this one. They had over 12 varieties of apples, a few Asian pears and pumpkins. We wanted to can apple butter again this year so mostly we loaded up on apples. Since apple picking involves taste testing Joshua was a big fan!

We finished our trip off with apple cider while sitting on the hayride's steps.


Then Sunday we set to work canning our apple butter. Something makes it even cooler when you know you picked the apples too! Mmmm apple butter makes fall so delicious.


Pinwheel Pumpkin Ice Cream Sandwiches


So sometimes Joshua offers US to make desserts and then forgets to tell me - because by US he means me :) Luckily I asked early enough and he joined me in helping to make dessert to take over to some new friends place for dinner. They turned out quite adorable and overly scrumptious!

On another note I swore I would avoid pumpkin for at least a week and then couldn't help myself and failed, I accept failure in the form of pumpkin ice cream though!

Pinwheel Pumpkin Ice Cream Sandwiches:

Pinwheel Cookies:
Note: I avoided making pinwheel cookies for so long because who wants to make 2 doughs for 1 cookie, but alas I learned you split the dough and only have to add the chocolate- super simple!

6 tbs cocoa powder + tbs butter + 2 tbs milk
1 cup butter; room temp
1 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
2 tsp vanilla
2 tbs milk
3 cups flour

1     in a small saucepan melt the butter in the milk
2     remove from heat and stir in cocoa powder until melted, set aside
3     beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy
4     beat in egg yolks
5     beat in vanilla and milk
6     slowly mix in flour
7     split dough in 2/3 and 1/3 dough balls
8     set the 2/3 dough aside
9     mix the 1/3 dough ball with the cocoa powder mixture
10   split each flavor dough in half and set half of chocolate and half of
       vanilla dough aside
11   on a floured sheet of parchment paper roll out the vanilla dough into
       an 11-12" x 7-8" rectangle
12   on another floured sheet repeat with the chocolate dough
13   gently transfer the chocolate dough on top of the vanilla dough so they
       are directly on top of one another
14   run the rolling pin lightly over the top so that the 2 dough flavors seal
       together a little
15   carefully roll them together into a cylinder, set aside
16   repeat with the remaining dough halves
17   cover in plastic wrap an let set in refrigerator for at least 1/2 hour- 2 days
18   preheat oven to 325 degrees F
19   slice dough into about 1/4" slices
20   place on baking sheet and bake for 10-15 minutes

pumpkin ice cream:
inspired by this recipe

1 1/2 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
5 egg yolks
1/4 cup dark brown sugar; packed
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 pumpking puree

1   in a saucepan over medium-low heat mix the milk, cream, sugar, spices
2   heat until the edges begin to bubble and the mixture is hot
3   in a small bowl lightly whisk the egg yolks
4   pour a cup of the warmed cream into the egg yolks and whisk continuously
5   pour egg yolk mixture into the saucepan and cook over low heat until
    mixture coats the back of a wooden spoon and is around 170-180 degrees F
    (on a candy thermometer)
6  remove from heat and mix in  brown sugar
7   store in refrigerator overnight in an airtight container
8   remove from fridge and mix with vanilla and pumpkin puree
9   make ice cream according to manufacturer's instructions

To assemble:

1  Let pinwheel cookies cool off completely
2  scoop some ice cream out onto parchment paper
3  roll ice cream to about 3/4" thick
4  using a biscuit cutter cut the ice cream to a size that works with the cookie
5  place inside 2 pinwheel cookies and gently press together
6   doesn't hurt to wrap it up all cute and add string :)