Jul 9, 2012

Keepin' it Real

Hey guys! How was everyone's weekend? Ours was mellow and full of family fun. Fun for us these days means accepting that our lives have a certain level of chaos, and just rolling with the punches. Ok, ok, our lives are high chaos! Back when Max was just a wiggly little six-month-old, a friend told us that having a toddler-aged boy was like living with an orangutan. I think of that comment often now and just have to laugh. Because it's true.
And I love it.

One hundred degree heat kept us mostly indoors this weekend, but on Saturday Ben had the idea to pick up fresh fish for dinner. We bought wild salmon at our favorite nearby market, and the rest of our meal came from this week's CSA load: sauteed rainbow chard with tomatoes, mashed potatoes - and an olive oil and herb drizzle for the salmon. Yup, I'm proud to say that we're eating through all our fresh produce like champs.

But back to the title of this blog post: keepin' it real. With a blog it's easy to present your life as this neat and tidy sequence of events. Which is why I thought it would be funny to set up our tripod while cooking dinner Saturday night, and capture Ben, Max and I getting real. By the end of a day when we've all been home, and we're in the midst of cooking dinner, the kitchen tends to be a little untidy a disaster. Most of our cleaning up happens after Max has gone to bed. If you ever come to our house in daylight hours and things are neat and organized and vacuumed ... then you have witnessed a miracle and should treat it as such. Here's a glimpse into our wild and crazy Saturday night!

{1} Here's Ben getting started with the meal prep, and me testing out the camera settings. I put the tripod on our breakfast table, which went great for a little while...

{2} By this point, we've tidied up our workspace a little, and Ben has busted out "The Joy of Cooking" for ideas on salmon and mashed potato prep. We treated ourselves to goat cheese and crackers while we were cooking.

{3} Max finished his dinner, and we still had a ways to go on our own meal prep. Things were getting a little dicey with Max running around, garlic burning and Bosco begging for scraps, and I decided it was time to pour myself a glass of wine!

{4} Max was in need of some attention, so we spent a while playing with the oven mitt. You can see how things take us a lot longer these days :)

{5} Max eventually knocked the camera off the breakfast table, so it got moved here - the dining room table - where it was less tempting. As you can see, when we're cooking, there's often a trail of toys, kiddos and dogs filing through the kitchen.

{6} I think this might be my favorite photo. This is our lives in a nutshell: Max zooming around on his train, wearing his fireman hat, after having also given Ben a hat to wear, while we do our best to keep cooking dinner.

Phew! Finally, dinner was ready and we were fast approaching Max's bedtime, so Ben and I quickly enjoyed the fruits of our labor before snuggling up with Max and a pile of books. The salmon, which Ben was in charge of, was amazing. The swiss chard and tomatoes that I whipped up at the last minute were pretty tasty. And even the mashed potatoes tasted pretty good, but unfortunately the texture was all wrong. Kind of gummy, if that makes any sense. But all in all, a nice Saturday night treat.

What did you do this weekend? What have you been cooking lately? I know I'll sure be sad when our CSA season is over. Having delicious, fresh produce makes cooking such a snap!

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