Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Closing the Cabin (Image Heavy Post)

My sister and her husband recently bought my father's cabin from him.  It is an awesome little cabin in Maryland with the Susquehanna River nearby, and plenty of super kitsch rustic charm via my stepmom's interior decorating skills and father's good humor.

Exactly one month ago at the beginning of November, we went down to close the cabin for the winter and eat naughty processed vegan s'mores, after our October Unprocessed challenge month!

Chris came down from Rhode Island, and we spent a wonderful weekend together with Malomar and my sister and her husband, surrounded by woods, friends, and food.

Here are some pictures from different cabin trips.  Often my Mother would come down from Lancaster Pennsylvania to spend time with us.  There are a lot of areas around the cabin to hike!

Here are some photos from the weekend that we closed the cabin.  The cabin is not yet winterized, but I believe my sister has plans for changing that in the future!

Closing the cabin was bittersweet, but it WAS filled with wine, roasting vegan marshmallows, and scary movies, fun!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I Remember Halloween (Image Heavy Post)

Every year about October 30th when I have no Halloween garb planned and I am scurrying around like maniac, I make this HUGE promise to myself that next year it will be different. Sometimes I say things like, "I am seriously starting my Halloween outfit for next year right away." I will even come up with some crazy get-up involving robotics and fireworks and the best makeup/fake blood combo you have ever dreamed up...and then it all gets lost.  And I claim Halloween is my favorite holiday...I should be ashamed of myself for my lack of planning.  Yet look at the absolute awesome we threw together!  

Saturday I went up to Providence and spent the evening with my best friend Melissa. We had a great time hanging out and went out to a fun bar, at which I won a costume contest.  Great news for me because it paid for my gasoline up there and our drinks! 

My beautiful bee of a best friend, Missy. 
My sister and a lovely German exchange student working on their pumpkins.
 Paper boy.  One comment was "This is either the worst costume I have ever seen, or the best."  
We say THE BEST!

 Strange characters at Grand Central.  They were attacking the ATM with swords. It was pretty entertaining.

It is SO SO hard not to smile for photos. It was an all night battle!

Sadly we missed the NYC Halloween parade because apparently it was too packed.  We did try to sneak in, but the cops stopped us at multiple checkpoints.

Apparently we were hard to miss.

Hope you had a wonderful Halloween as well! Now to start on my next's years costume...

Monday, November 15, 2010

Moroccan Spaghetti + My Sister's Birthday!

For my sister's birthday our friend Ralph made a guest appearance just in time to see what kind of craziness happens in our kitchen!  It was nearing the end of our Unprocessed October and we were getting really good at eating all whole, unprocessed ingredients without even thinking of it.

I made a recipe that Chris's dad had made for us a while back, that quickly became a favorite dish to make:  Moroccan Spaghetti! 

 Ralph helping me with the 2010 spaghetti mishap.
 Adding cilantro and mint to the chickpea and tomato mixture. This recipe is really wonderful!
Myself and Honza contemplating life over the spaghetti and his homemade bread.

 Double fisting is okay on your birthday...
 Nicole opening presents.
Honza showing off his grandfather's glasses.
Happy Birthday to my spectacular and beloved sister, Nicole!

Bushwick Can Be Beautiful!

A few weekends ago, my sister and her hubby and I ventured to Bushwick (Brooklyn) for dinner at our friend's welcoming and gorgeous apartment.  We had gone earlier in the end of summer for a barbecue, and this time the Fall weather was calling for some grilled pizza and sightseeing.

First Marek and Kristyna who are not only talented artists, but also an amazing and wonderful couple, showed us around Bushwick, which was full of surprises!  My favorite was a nondescript door with only the word "Roberta's" written above it that Marek ventured into.  We followed with trepidation but were absolutely delighted with what was found!  A bustling and rustic pizza shop with a garden in the back.  Roberta's was absolutely amazing and I cannot wait to go back and spend some more time there! Here is a photo from their backyard garden: 

Next we went to their apartment, which has a spacious backyard (an anomaly in NYC) with a nice garden and peaceful pond with running water; and we had a grilled pizza feast:  all ingredients whole and unprocessed!

 My sister and Kristyna prepping the table.
 Their backyard garden at the end of the growing season. A lot of peppers left!
Hors d'Ĺ“uvre and pizza toppings: olives, peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms, spinach, homemade vegan pesto, onion, fresh oregano and local cheeses.
 Marek rolling out the pizza dough.
 Kristyna squeezing fresh limes/lemons for the salad dressing.

The pizzas and dessert were so so yummy that I didn't even take the time out to photograph that part of the meal.  For dessert we had hot spiced apple compote with berries and Wild Mountain tea.  It was such a nice evening!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Seasonal Fun: Apple Picking!

Fall is a great time to load up on way too many apples, and broaden your apple recipe know-how.  It's also a great time to spend some time in the orchards with friends and family.  My best friend Missy came down from Providence, and met my sister and her husband and I in Connecticut for apple picking.  The first "farm" we went to was a total bust...sans the fact that there were 2 donkeys there that ALMOST let us pet them.  1. There were no orchards or apples, and 2. There were pumpkins but already harvested and just hanging out on tables.

We were hard pressed to find organic apple picking...in fact we couldn't find any organic pick your own places nearby, (the search continues)

We set our sails for another farm (thank you google and smart phones), and ended up traveling down beautiful winding roads covered in fall foliage and passing by farm after farm until we came to Blue Jay Orchard in Bethel Connecticut. 

 Myself, My Sis, and Missy
 Pretty sure that we think we are hilarious.
 Informative Bee Hive...a great addition to the farm!

 Honza thought eating an apple while on the tree is genius. It kind of is, let's be honest.
 Me and Missy
 The bounty!

 And the awesome apple crisp we made (unprocessed) when we got home! YUM!

So far we also made: Apple Compote, Apple Squash Bake, Acorn Squash and Apple Soup and coming up we will have a Sweet Potato Apple Bake.