Saturday, November 29, 2014

Littlebits

My son Jake has always loved computers.  When he was two he would sit at my computer, open up the photo booth and take pictures of himself.  He then would open his gmail, attach a photo, and send it to his preschool teachers with the subject HI, the only word he knew how to type by himself.

Obviously Jake's skills have improved over the years.  Whoever has a computer or technology question immediately calls on Jake.  Jake's knowledge is enormous and he loves to learn new things each day.  Jake even gets phone calls for his tech help from far and wide.

Finding gifts for Jake is always a real challenge.  He does not want very many things.  A few years ago he got a Raspberry Pi.  This has nothing to do with a delicious dessert. It is a complicated engineering device that I could not possibly explain to you, simply because I do not understand how it works.

When I stumbled on Littlebits a few weeks ago I knew I had found an awesome gift for Jake.  As soon as it arrived in the mail, Jake tore it open and completed every single project in an hour.  The pieces were open ended enough that Jake had many future projects in mind to make the kit last much longer.  During the Black Friday sale, Littlebits had a sale.  Jake chose a new kit so that he can create more cool inventions.

Today Jake wants to share with you his door alarm.  Jake designed it himself, using the pieces in the Deluxe Kit.  As soon as his cloudbit arrives, Jake will be making many new projects including a sound trigger that will email me when my laundry is done.  I can't wait!


Sunday, November 9, 2014

Where am I?

My poor neglected blog. I have given you no attention in what feels like forever.  In reality it has been only 2 months.  The past 2 months have been crazy.  Joey has a HS diploma and is working in the culinary field.  He makes amazing food for us and he will be a famous chef one day, I am sure of that.  Alex and Noah are both still suffering from their POTS symptoms.  This video is a good summary of what their daily issues are:
Both Alex and Noah are in the IIS(Interim Instructional Services) program through Montgomery county.  It is the only way for them both to keep up with their school work.
Jake is in 5th grade and having a very good year so far and Diane is in 1st grade and having a fabulous time.
Tons of cooking going on. Our weekly soup is a mushroom, potato farro stew and it is amazing. 
Lots of craziness going on around here.  Will try to update more often.
I will leave you with our healthy Mac and Cheese recipe.

Sara's Mac and Cheese
Heat 1 and 1/2 cup milk in a pan.  In a small bowl whisk together 1/4 cup milk and 3T flour.  Add this mixture in to the milk and heat up after it is slowly boiling for about 5 minutes. Keep whisking it, until it gets a little bit thicker.  Take pan off the heat and stir in 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese, 1 cup of ricotta cheese and a little salt.  You will now have a nice creamy, fairly healthy cheese sauce.  Stir in one box of your favorite cooked pasta.  Combine until all the noodles are nicely coated with cheese sauce.  Pour into a oven proof pan.  Sprinkle over the top a bit of salt, parmesan and cornflake crumbs.  Bake at 450 degrees for 20-30 minutes, until bubbly and brown a bit.
Enjoy!

Friday, September 5, 2014

School is back in session

Where did the summer go? Why do all the fun things go by so quickly, and then the things you dread take forever.
The kids are growing so quickly, and I honestly feel like I blinked 18 years ago and now I have 5 kids who are growing before my eyes.
Two weeks ago Jake started 5th grade.
It is such a relief that Jake has awesome teachers this year.  It has been a tough 5 years, but so far so good!
Diane started first grade this week.
One of the highlights of her new classroom, was her own desk!!  She was not quite as excited to hear that she would be starting the morning with classwork.

The first day the children were welcomed with Magic Playdough in a bag.  Food coloring was hidden inside the playdough and as they manipulated the dough, the color exploded.  It was a great way to start First Grade.

Today I was lucky enough to be invited for Snack and a Story.  Diane chose her favorite book and the kids enjoyed it very much. I wish a happy back to school to all of you!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Have you heard of Instacart?

Have you heard of the App called Instacart? It is hands down, the best app that I have downloaded in
 the past 5 years.  Not even joking!
 
Don't get mad at me though, this app does not work everywhere.  However, if you live in the DC Metro area you are in luck.  This app allows you to shop at 4 local stores:
Whole Foods
Costco
Harris Teeter
and Safeway.

Each area in which Instacart operates,  will have their own local stores for you to shop in.
This service is awesome, I can shop on my phone for groceries while sitting at a doctor's appointment, waiting in the carpool line, or getting my car serviced. The possibilities are endless.




hi
What sets the Instacart app from the rest? They will deliver your whole order to you (for a nominal fee) within 1-2 HOURS!  Yes, the ingredients you forgot for your dinner can be at your front door in minutes.  During the school year, this app will be a total lifesaver.  You can also sign up at their website www.instacart.com and shop instantly if you do not have a phone with apps.

Now that I shared how awesome this service is, you want a discount code, right?
How about $10 off your first order and FREE delivery?? Just click this link and I will hook you up!  http://inst.cr/t/bZMhoV  or go to their website and enter the code SLAFOUNTAIN1 and you will receive the same offer.

You will be thanking me during the next ice storm, rainy day, or busy afternoon as you order your dinner to be delivered.  I don't think I will ever run out of milk again.  Instacart to the rescue!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Kale Chips in the Microwave???

In our Maryland's Pick organic food bag we have been getting 2-3 heads of kale a week. There is only so much kale salad we can eat.  (I have also been putting kale in our smoothies but SHHHHH)  We have been sharing our kale and eating our kale, but it has grown a bit boring!

On these hot summer days the last thing I want to do is turn on the oven to make a few kale chips.  So a friend mentioned that she made them in the microwave. Brilliant!!
I used a beautiful head of curly lacinato kale this week and I tried to make the chips in the microwaved and it worked.  This is not really a recipe, and you will have to figure out how your own microwave will cook them.  You want to try to get them not too burnt, but crispy similar to potato chips.
Microwave Kale Chips
Kale
Oil (any flavor is fine, I used coconut oil)
Salt

Wash and dry the kale.
Rip it up into small pieces.
Pour a little bit of oil on it and sprinkle on some salt.  Massage the oil and salt in to all the pieces.
Place on a glass dish and spread them around so they are not touching each other.
Cook on high power for 2 minutes.  Open the microwave and move it all around a bit more.  They will look very soft and mushy at this point. Perfect!
Spread them out again and cook for 1 more min.
Open the microwave. Almost crispy and chip like.  Cook 30 seconds more and mine were done.  They tasted just like kale potato chips. Healthy, delicious, easy, and the house stays cool.


Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Would you like some #Sharktankswag

Our family loves to watch Shark Tank together.  We quickly give our opinions on whether the product that is being presented will be funded or not, will become popular or not, can be found on the internet or not.  It is a very fun family evening activity.  Shark Tank provides some much needed conversation with the teens and tween group.

Last week we were so excited when we got the opportunity to receive a box of #sharktankswag from #CNBCPrimetv .

Even our dog Molly was excited!
Are you watching Shark Tank on Tuesdays? CNBC at 8 pm? Back to back episodes, so two for the price of one??
We will be watching tonight and enjoying the swag that we got in the mail.  Would you like a box of swag too? Enter my giveaway and you can have your very own box of surprises.
What are you waiting for?
Enter now!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, June 27, 2014

Maryland's Pick- Week Two

This was our second week of Maryland's Pick from our local Whole Foods. Another big bag of green, healthy, and delicious items!!
Not much different than last week. Again, all organic items from Homestead Farms. I am really excited about the squash. Quinoa zucchini fritters are definitely happening this weekend.
We also will make some kale chips with the lacinato kale.   The contents of the bag from the weekly email looks like this:
1 bunch Curly kale
1 bunch Lacinato Kale
1 bunch Basil
1 bunch Parsley
1 lb Yellow squash
1 lb Patty Pan squash
1 lb Zucchini
1 bunch Dandelion greens
1 bunch Sorrel
                                                            1 bunch (1/2 lb) Garlic Scapes

If my kale chips are yummy, I will share the recipe. We have just made kale salads and they are good enough.  We also used the lacinato kale on top of a pizza I made yesterday as well. I will share that new find next week.  It tasted incredible.

Eat your greens!  If you are not sure what to make with some of these greens, put a little bit in a fruit smoothie, simple and delicious.

It is not too late to signup for your own Maryland's Pick bag at your local Whole Foods. What are you waiting for??? Go get a bag for yourself!