Saturday, May 15, 2010

Farmer's Market Heaven!


Before I became a mom, I used to be into things like food and photography. Remember that? Well, I'm still into them but it can be a lot harder to find the time to talk about it. I am going to change that up this summer and start sharing some of my great food finds. This morning Vivi and I walked to the Falls Church farmer's market...at City Hall if you're a local Virginian. It's about 2 miles from the house, and I'm really thankful we live so close by. We both had such fun eating yummy snacks and listening to the amazing bluegrass/folk/Americana musicians who came. Next to a few weekends ago, this farmer's market was in another universe. It was probably the best local farmer's market I've ever attended (I'm not counting Eastern Market or Dupont Circle as local, although clearly those are great ones). We got spring onions, leeks, kale, gorgeous and colorful swiss chard, bok choy, arugula, fresh bread, pastries, milk and yogurt, a pork shoulder, bison burgers, and bison sausage sticks. And all of that was only about $60, which to me is a steal. I easily would have paid that or more at Whole Foods. I would have gotten so much more if I could have carried it home! Nate is in Philadelphia for his last regatta today, but next weekend we are able to go together, so I will be in trouble. I can't resist all of the amazing foods.

Cooking Light has their excellent "summer cookbook" in this month's issue, so I'm looking forward to using it to figure out how to cook all of the interesting veggies I got. No cranberry beans this time, but I'm on the lookout next week. Plus, I really want an herb garden so will return for basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, and a few others. And if you're into food like me and haven't heard it yet, you should really give NPR's Splendid Table a listen. I've been enjoying it for the last hour while I blog. I'm really excited now to go out and find orange blossom water. One of her guests described a bunch of ways to use it in desserts and even with swiss chard! My mom used it when I was growing up, so I have such fond memories of that beautiful small french blue bottle with the cursive writing. Nate's parents are in town for Memorial Day weekend, so perhaps we'll take them to the Lebanese butcher up the street to get a goat leg, and I can look for it then. If you haven't tried curry goat, you're missing out! It's fantastic, and I really trust a Halal butcher to care about where his meat came from and how it was treated. You're not going to find a goat around here that hasn't been grazing grass, that's for sure!

My next food mission that I will blog about...make the perfect fizzy mint limeade with my own home-grown mint. I had a version of this at the fantastic DC restaurant Founding Farmers, and ever since I have dreamed of making my own similarly delicious concoction. And now that I'm pregnant and can't enjoy the bounty of summer cocktails, cold beers, and beloved vinho verde (again, if you haven't tried it, go out and get some today! It's a Portuguese white wine that is slightly carbonated, very light, and extraordinary...and they sell it at Trader Joe's for $5!). I tried out a limeade recipe at the baby shower my friend and I threw for friends last weekend, but it just wasn't what I was hoping for...slightly brown in color and much too sweet.

Update on the kid


Genevieve turned two on April 30th, and she's definitely beginning to show signs of rebellion. But mostly it's hilarious to see her furrow her brow and shout "No! Mine!," so it's easy to overlook. She still eats just as much as she ever did and the same huge variety, so I'm no longer worried as I once was when people would say "Oh she eats well now, but just wait until she's 2 and can decide for herself." She'll eat nearly any vegetable I put in front of her, unless it's something I can barely stomach myself like steamed spinach (bleh), and she'll even eat in any restaurant we've taken her to, including Afghan, Vietnamese, Salvadorean, etc. Basically, I think her rule of thumb is that if we're eating it, it must be good. Occasionally I'll treat her to an organic burger and olive-oil french fries from our excellent local fast food place (Elevation Burger), but her most frequently requested meals (the request in Vivi-talk is "How 'bout....?") are fish fingers, eggs, or soup, plus veggie, tomatoes, cheese/yogurt, and fruit. Yes, she eats all of that at every meal. At her 2-year well-child visit, she measured a whopping 37 inches...literally off the charts in height--the nurse said "Occasionally I'll tell a parent their kid is off the chart when they're above the 100th percentile, but this child is literally off the page, so I'll just have to write in her height," and she's 85th percentile in weight. Oh, the joys of bean-poledom begin.

For those of you who are interested in her potty-training skills (a surprising number of people seem to be, unless they just consider it polite conversation to ask me whether she still uses diapers), we are just approaching the actual attempts to go in the mini-potty. She's had a potty and the books for months, so she knows what it's all about, but now the trick is just to get her going in it. Meanwhile our nanny is content to let her wear diapers until she's three, so it seems this is going to be my journey alone (oh, and Nate's...ha! no, I kid. It will be mine alone).

I've had a busy couple of months, but I know family love to get these updates, so I'll do my best to keep up now that I'm no longer traveling the country for work. I have one last trip (a drive! thank goodness) to West Virginia, which I'm really looking forward to, as it's a beautiful part of the country and only 4 hours away. I'm 25 weeks pregnant today with baby girl #2, and I'm still feeling great. My weight is exactly the same as it was last time, so I'm feeling good but guilty for not working out more. I still have thank-you cards to write for Vivi's gifts, so if you haven't gotten one yet, hang in there! I am printing pictures this week and will send them ASAP. Speaking of pictures, I'm going to upload some now and some videos, so check back soon for those. The best is Vivi diving into her birthday cupcake face-first. Daddy's little champion eater!

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