I went shopping at Trader Joe’s…

lunch on 31 Aug 2016: edamame hummus, carrots and microgreens on tortillas, salami sticks, snow leopard melon, and Goldfish trail mix
lunch on 31 Aug 2016: edamame hummus, carrots and microgreens on tortillas, salami sticks, snow leopard melon, and Goldfish trail mix
lunch on 31 Aug 2016: edamame hummus, carrots and microgreens on tortillas, salami sticks, snow leopard melon, and Goldfish trail mix

Today’s lunch is full of goodies from a recent trip to Trader Joe’s. The tortillas are stuffed with edamame hummus, shredded carrots and microgreens—all from TJ’s. The salami snack sticks are a new favorite with the kids. They come in little twin packs that look like this:

salame sticks
salame sticks

Those crazy looking chunks of white melon are from a snow leopard melon. I saw these little melons for the first time at Trader Joe’s. The flavor is somewhat similar to a honeydew, but slightly more floral. It’s delicious! The trail mix also contains a new TJ’s treat: candy coated drops with natural dyes (hippy M&Ms).

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What’s in My Crock-Pot?

Crock-Pot loaded with marinara sauce goodness
Crock-Pot loaded with marinara sauce goodness

Today I’ve got a big batch of marinara sauce simmering away in the Crock-Pot. I love making large quantities of marinara sauce—it’s a great way to use up random cans of tomatoes, wilting herbs and veggies that have been lost for a while in the crisper. Here’s the non-recipe recipe:

Crock-Pot Marinara Sauce

  • canned tomatoes of any sort: diced tomatoes, stewed tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, whole tomatoes, fire-roasted tomatoes, whatever you’ve got
  • veggies: chopped carrots, celery, and onions
  • herbs and spices: lots of garlic, parsley, basil, bay leaves, oregano, red pepper flakes, fresh ground pepper an salt to taste

If you want to make to make a lot of sauce, fill your slow cooker almost to the top with tomatoes. Then toss in your chopped veggies, herbs and spices. Pour in a nice glug of olive oil, because a little fat always makes things taste good. Cook on low all day. Before serving, I pureé everything with an immersion blender because I like a smooth sauce. But make your sauce any way you like it. Add whatever spices and veggies you have on hand (mushrooms, sweet bell peppers, a little spinach, etc.). Chunky, spicy, peppery: marinara made from scratch is all good.

Overnight Oats with Peanut Butter, Chia Seeds and Strawberries

lunch on 30 Aug 2016: peanut butter oats with strawberries, colorful carrots, figs, and mango applesauce
lunch on 30 Aug 2016: peanut butter oats with strawberries, colorful carrots, figs, and mango applesauce
lunch on 30 Aug 2016: peanut butter oats with strawberries, colorful carrots, figs, and mango applesauce

Last night, I whipped up a yummy batch of overnight oats for the kiddos’ lunches today. I just love overnight nights: so fast, easy, and delicious.

Peanut Butter Overnight Oats
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1-1/2 cups almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup

Put all the above ingredients in a jar and stir it up. Let set in the fridge overnight. Give it another good stir before serving with fresh fruit or jam on top. Yum!

Lunchmaking and Seattle Fun

lunch on 29 Aug 2016: peanut butter, Nutella and raspberry jam on sourdough bread, colorful carrots, sugar snap peas, cherry tomatoes, applesauce, and Goldfish with peanuts

The first week of school was light on lunches because the whole family traveled to Seattle for TypeCon, the ultimate typography nerd fest. When I say “typography nerd” I mean it as the ultimate compliment. There’s no people like type people.

After three busy days of type talks and sightseeing for the kids, we’re now officially back into the school routine with this colorful lunch:

lunch on 29 Aug 2016: peanut butter, Nutella and raspberry jam on sourdough bread, colorful carrots, sugar snap peas, cherry tomatoes, applesauce, and Goldfish with peanuts
lunch on 29 Aug 2016: peanut butter, Nutella and raspberry jam on sourdough bread, colorful carrots, sugar snap peas, cherry tomatoes, applesauce, and Goldfish with peanuts

The kiddos enjoying Seattle:

enjoying some fancy food (watermelon with a pipette of tomato consomme) courtesy of our friends at Adobe Typekit
Enjoying some fancy food (watermelon with a pipette of tomato consomme) courtesy of our friends at Adobe Typekit. Thanks, Adobe!
On the Pike Place Market pig.
On the Pike Place Market pig.

A Sweet Lunch to Kick Off a New School Year

Excited for the first day of school.

And just like that, summer vacation is over. This may have been the fastest summer vacation of all time. That being said, it was still a bit of a scramble to get everyone out the door on time this morning. Plus, yesterday Lily had her annual dance recital, which is always a day of complete insanity. AND, today is my sweet Lily’s 8th birthday! Craziness. I didn’t really plan in advance for a special birthday lunch. Instead, it was more like: “What’s in the cupboards? We’re out of bread? How about these two English muffins?”

lunch making essentials: peanut butter, raspberry jam and Nutella
lunch making essentials: peanut butter, raspberry jam and Nutella

The kids pretty much always get excited about a Nutella sandwich. Lily requested peanut butter, Nutella and raspberry jam. Iain just went with classic straight-up peanut butter and Nutella. Fruit salad is also a lunch favorite and this one is extra good with fresh pineapple, farmers market strawberries and raspberries, and chucks of cantaloupe.

lunch to kick of the school year: fruit salad, peanut butter and Nutella English muffin sandwiches, and carrot sticks
lunch to kick of the school year: fruit salad, peanut butter and Nutella English muffin sandwiches, and carrot sticks

Here are my cuties posing for a pre-school pic. They are so ready for third and sixth grade.

Excited for the first day of school.
Excited for the first day of school.

Are here they are after yesterday’s dance recital. Iain is ever the jokester. Of course he did sit in front of the three most annoying chatterboxes on earth and he didn’t spontaneously combust—so, I owe him one.

post-dance recital with a silly brother
post-dance recital with a silly brother