First Seeds





Today we planted 36 Newburg onion seeds and some St. John's Chamomile flowers. This is our first year trying to grow from seed so I am both excited and nervous about it. Thankfully Grace wore her blue hat so I think that should bring us some luck. In any case, over the next few months our kitchen is going to double as a greenhouse/science lab (depending on how things turn out). Next week it will be Lavender, Echinacea, and German Chamomile...and then come TOMATOES... can't wait!



Still Winter

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Yes, winter came back. I don't think it was ever really gone... but it had me fooled for a few days (though I'm not sure why since this happens every year). I don't mind though. I'm slowly growing to appreciate this time of year as a nice long pause. This spring is going to be a busy one... with a lot of first time adventures. So for now I am just enjoying this last month or so of forced calm.

But I did find today, when I was out trimming the lilac bushes, that the magnolia tree is already budding. So despite the forty feet of snow, spring really is just around the corner...


Our New... Playroom

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It's so good to have my family back. And I got so much done this weekend (more on that later). But yesterday it was so great to just have everyone back home safe and sound (there's a marathon snow storm in progress here).

Today we made pumpkin muffins (our last jar of pumpkin), planned our gardens, did a lot of laundry, and these two spent a good chunk of their day in the new "playroom". We are in the process of a very big rearranging/reorganizing process around here. Jackson is going to move into his own room which means the playroom will be no longer. In it's place we are setting up two smaller play areas, one upstairs and one downstairs. This is the downstairs one... the closet under the stairs. This closet had been sitting (for two years) very in need of some help. Not only did it need some fresh paint, but we weren't really using the space efficiently at all.

But after a few coats of paint, some shelves and a little lamp... it became a very cozy play space. Grace and Jackson are thrilled with it. I have to say that I am too. I almost feel like we added a new room to our house. Now I just need to find a new home for everything that use to live in here.



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I sent them off all packed. Fresh clean clothes (why I'm not sure, they will certainly not get out of their jammies all weekend), yummy food, games, babies, and of course hugs and kisses. And now I am alone. For three days. I'm starting off my weekend with a nice cup of tea and a deep breath... all by myself. Ahhh. Quiet.


Here In Minnesota

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In other parts of the world, a 52 degree day would be considered chilly. Normal, rational people would certainly not leave home on such a day without a warm jacket, scarf and hat. Here in Minnesota on the other hand (especially after the exceptionally cold winter we just had), 52 degrees means SPRING. Time to shed the coats and hats and march around in our boats looking for mud to play in.

(I should point out that I am not one of these irrational people, but my children certainly are.)

I did eventually get their coats back on.


Valentine's Day

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This year Valentine's Day was a little different since we had to get up and go to school and work. But, Grace and Jackson still did wake up with a little Valentine's surprise from mama.

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A new bonnet for Grace's baby.

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And a new pair of pants for Jackson's baby.

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Grace had a Valentine's tea party at school and was asking/wishing for a new bonnet for her baby. Jackson (hearing Grace's request) decided that "Baby Boy" really needed some new "stretch pants". So Valentine's morning both got their wish.

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After school and work (which for another month and a half ends at 12:30) we spent the rest of our day delivering our Valentine's followed by a holiday dinner at my parent's.

It was a very full Valentine's day... but a good one.


Finished Valentine's

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Sledding and a Date

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Ryan and I were suppose to have a couple days alone this weekend while my parents watched the kids on Saturday and Sunday. But on Friday night Jackson was up for over two hours in the night sneezing and coughing (which then also kept the rest of us up to some degree or another). So we thought it would be best to cancel the overnight. Instead Saturday ended up being a day of sledding (well and napping) which turned out to be pretty fun too. My sister and Kris even stopped over for a surprise visit (and some more sledding).

And today Ryan and I got our date. Lunch here and this movie. Loved both.


Dinner... A New Favorite

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Maple Glazed Salmon
Edamame with Soy Dipping Sauce
Basmati Rice

We made this awhile ago during one of our cooperative cooking get togethers. It has become a family favorite.

For Salmon Glaze
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pound salmon

In a small bowl, mix the maple syrup, soy sauce, garlic, garlic salt, and pepper.
Place salmon in a shallow glass baking dish, and coat with the maple syrup mixture. Cover the dish, and marinate salmon in the refrigerator 30 minutes, turning once.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
Place the baking dish in the preheated oven, and bake salmon uncovered 20 minutes, or until easily flaked with a fork.

For Soy Dipping Sauce

1/4 cup orange juice (or fresh squeeze orange)
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
Dash ground red pepper (cayenne)

Mix everything together.


Up North

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