You wouldn’t think that choosing lighting would be so hard, but for me it is. I don’t often get the chance to replace lighting in my house with cool new lighting, and the task of choosing something is stressing me out. Originally I thought I would get the Hektar light from Ikea to place in the main area of the kitchen, but after almost pulling the trigger, I wimped out – the size of it is just too big. I do love the look of the Hektar, but combine the ceiling height with my super tall husband and there just isn’t enough room for it all.
While I was at Ikea I did grab myself two of the small Hektar pendant lamps for the pantry and mudroom areas, and I totally love them. More to come on that in that next kitchen update post. As a stop gap for the main kitchen lighting, I picked up a $30 Foto lamp from Ikea, not knowing how long it would be before I actually found the perfect fixture. So here I go on a mission to find the most awesome lighting for the kitchen. Above is a list of my favorites so far, although I am sure that will change as I continue to hunt.
I’ve got a big crush on enamel shades right now, I don’t think I would’ve predicted that I would have been so obsessed 6 months ago, but I am. I guess I’m worried that this is just a phase and I’ll get over it, and then I won’t like my light anymore. I think the prudent thing to do is wait a bit more before I lock in – I mean, I gotta see how the kitchen comes together. I am really excited to find the best light ever though, I kinda think it’s gonna be the icing on the cake you guys.
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I love this so much right now, groups of plants in windows – on shelves. I am 100% pro on this plant trend, I love plants and have always had them in my house and apartments. Even as a teenager I had plants in my bedroom, I just think they are cool, okay guys. So, when I started to see photos of plants in windows – on shelves, I was sold. Don’t be surprised if you see this in the kitchen. Jeff is gonna hate this idea for sure.
It’s the end of CSA season, insert sad face here. I really, really enjoy getting our bi-weekly boxes chalked full of fresh veggies and it’s sad to end its regularity. I’m going to do my best to keep stocking the fridge with fruits and veggies throughout the winter. I think it’s been really good for our family to have lots of different veggies always available to us, and grocery store produce won’t be the same. So begins the winter…
The fall CSA box is always full of tons of tomatoes, peppers and squash, so this meal is pretty fitting for the bounty. Seriously, all of the recipes I’ve shared with you guys (via driftless organics) have been totally delicious, I’m impressed. This was just another good one; salty and sweet, a little spicy and perfect for a chilly fall night.
I prepared it with my favorite go to salad on the side; arugula, thinly sliced onion, almonds, goat cheese, salt, cracked pepper, lemon and a drizzle of olive oil. This one never gets old.
Poblano & Smoked Gouda Stuffed Delicata SquashRecipe from Driftless Organics
▼ 2 delicata squash
▼ 1 poblano pepper
▼ 2 cloves garlic, unpeeled
▼ olive oil for pan and drizzling
▼ 1 roma tomato
▼ salt and pepper to taste
▼ ½ c. grated smoked gouda cheese
▼ ¼ c. panko bread crumbs
Preheat oven to 375º. Cut Delicata in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Place cut side down on an oiled baking sheet with unpeeled garlic cloves, whole polblano pepper and roast for 20-25 minutes, until squash is just tender. Cut Roma in quarters lengthwise, scoop out seeds with finger and drizzle with oil, salt and pepper and place on pan with squash about 10 minutes through baking time.
Remove pan from oven. Carefully scoop most of squash flesh out of the delicatas into a mixing bowl. Squeeze roasted garlic into squash pulp. Carefully pull skin off poblano, remove seeds and stem, and coarsely chop. Add about half of the pepper to squash and taste before adding more (just in case it’s spicy). Season to taste with salt and pepper and spoon pulp back into squash shells.
Top with bread crumbs and grated gouda and put back into oven for 10 minutes, until cheese is melted and panko is browned. Serves 2-4.
This weekend we celebrated Jeff’s 32nd b-day, he’s such an old man now! The weekend before I attended a baby shower for my cousin, and for both events I wrapped my gifts the same way, with white paper and black and white baker’s twine. I know this isn’t reinventing the wheel or anything, but I really like wrapping gifts this way because it looks sweet and thoughtful, and most importantly, it’s really easy. I always have a roll of Ikea drawing paper from the kids section meant for use with their easels. I use it all the time, currently it’s my jam for keeping my workspace clean while painting the kitchen cupboards. I also use it for background sweeps when I am taking pics for the blog, I use it for present wrapping, (obviously) and yes, sometimes the kids actually use it for drawing. I would highly recommend grabbing a roll next time you take a trip to your local Ikea.
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I like to add some hot pink washi tape too, just to be cool.
Forgive my goofy thumbs up poses, and super dorky smile -I’m just excited!
Yeah! I am super excited to tell you guys that I’ve lost 15 lbs(!) so far! I’m really feeling great, and am probably more healthy than I have ever been in my whole life. I am still walking daily (only missing 3 days since I started). I’ve upped the ante a bit walking 4.5 miles 3 days a week and 3 miles the other 4 days. My calves are cut like knives, my legs are skinny, I’ve lost my double chin, and my waist is finally starting to cinch up a bit. Plus I feel good.
Here are some stats that I am super proud of (July 1 – September 26):
Walked: 1,301,916 steps – averaging 14,663 steps per day
Gone: 613.91 miles – averaging 6.92 miles per day
Lost: 15 lbs
Worn through: 1 pair of shoes
Seen: Amazing sunrises
Listened to: Tons of cool jamz
Covered: 3 years of This American Life
I still have 5 more lbs to make my first goal of losing 20 lbs, I know that’s totally doable over the next month, I’d still ideally like to lose another 10 on top of that. After all the work I’ve put into this for the fist 15, I know that the next 15 will be really hard, and it will take most of the winter to lose it. Eventually it will be harder to walk when the temps drop in the deep winter, but I am committed to keeping with it through the fall and early winter. I even purchased some super sporty winter walking gear. The hardest part is waking up when it’s still dark out, sometimes it feels like I’m dreaming while I walk.
Here are some sunrise pics for you, I’m pretty proud of them.