Why yes I have celebrated Oktoberfest 17 times now

For some reason I have a hard time remembering that sandwiches are an option for dinner, which is strange, since my love of sandwiches is near Joey Tribbiani-level. I think I've solved this problem by breaking out "Pizza and Sandwiches" on my Pinterest page, so that any time I think, "I would like some food, and I would like at least one layer of bread to be involved," bam! There are a whole slew of options. First up: pan bagnat, French for "sounds fancy, but that tuna still came out of the pantry."

My reasoning behind the sweet potato leek soup behind it was that I can only find leeks in pairs even though I only ever need ONE LEEK and therefore I had a stray in the fridge.

Dinner: explained at unnecessary length.

You guys know I don't usually get political in this space, and I certainly don't want to fuel any conspiracy theorists, but I'm concerned that there were some...shenanigans at our polling place on Sunday.

You just know she voted a straight Sesame Street ticket, too.

Things got even worse when we took the little monster to Oktoberfest at NXNW, where she became increasingly opinionated.

"No, listen, man. You don't even get it."

I'd say it all hit bottom when, inspired by the oompah band, she stormed the stage to break it down monster-style.

This part is 100% true.

Moves like Frankenstein.

At some point, her buzz wore off and I think she may have had regrets about her performance.

The whole thing was a bit much for Ivy.


Based on how much she delights herself, I'd say she's definitely going to become a blogger

Not sure what's gotten into me this week, but our meals have been exceptionally green. Maybe I sensed the impending cold front in my bones noticed online that the weather was going to turn and wanted to grab some late-late-late summer harvest while I could. Maybe four weeks out from Meat Month I have finally had my fill of beige, carby things. (Contemplates pretzels, rejects this theory.) Maybe it's time for my last-minute veggie cram before my diet becomes 80% holiday cookies. At any rate, here are a couple of nice verdant dinners for you before I make pizza again tomorrow night.

First, ginger-cilantro baked tilapia over couscous with broccoli and spinach. Man, I am just sticking it to the cilantro-avoidant among you lately. Hey, maybe I'm gearing up for Halloween--does cilantro ward off chupacabras or something?

How about goats? Does it at least ward off goats?
Then we have some skillet-baked spiced eggs with spinach, yogurt, and spiced butter. Baking eggs is actually my least favorite approach, which means I only like baked eggs about five times as much as any other food, as opposed to twenty times as much.

Maybe seven times as much when you factor in spiced butter.

Ivy continues to make friends wherever she goes.


I'm not sure what it means when a preschooler suddenly pulls a Babe Ruth during dinner, but it seems like trouble. I'm guessing that either the wall is getting a fresh coat of peanut butter or the hallway ghost is back.

Not sure...which way to root here.

Other things I'm keeping an eye on: this little planning committee. I don't think that short one is messing around.

Maybe they're writing a birthday card to PaPa? Happy birthday, PaPa! No, they're probably generating a list of non-spinach-containing dinner suggestions.


Now Cash's grandparents will be mad at me

I'm pretty beat, guys. Let's just have some pizza and chill out. Roasted garlic chicken pesto? Twist my arm!

Few things chill me out like smearing an entire bulb of roasted garlic on something. HEAR THAT, VAMPIRES?
I feel like I have shown you these southwest turkey sliders over spicy avocado slaw before, but I'm currently too chilled out to look that up. At any rate, I've never shown you Ivy's discerning approach to them. (Also, do not be alarmed by the paleo recipe: I added yogurt. And two slices of pumpkin bread.)

She ate it. Then she ate Anna's. Then she slammed a beer and crushed the can on her forehead.
We had a Halloween potluck for my Moms Group on Saturday! Guess what Anna went as?

Inspired by her father, Ivy spent all afternoon perfecting her aloofness.

Nailed it.
Look how much work people did!

Not that I didn't do work as well. I had to open at least four or five bags of stuff to make this Scarecrow Crunch.

Had to find the scissors in the drawer, etc.

I also made some halloween chips and then wrote a Food Lush post about it and then remembered to mention it here HIGH FIVE.

Oh, another Anna and Cash photo op! Everybody ready to take turns? Anna, you go first. Please smile for real, your grandparents are concerned.

Wow, that was actually...not too pained! Good job. Cash?

Er, Cash?

Come on, let's all just try to get on the same page, here.



Even Meat Month couldn't destroy my love of pulled pork

Ah, the bánh mì. Probably the tastiest result of French colonialism and one of the few sandwiches for which I would bother figuring out two different accent marks. (I would do it for the croque-madame or the muffuletta, but they have never required it of me.) Did you know that, like most great things, the filling can be made in a slow cooker? And that the result is a tangy, brown-sugary pile of pork that will somehow jump repeatedly into your mouth as you attempt to assemble the sandwich?

Look away, cilantrophobics. This is not for you.

Okay, I know I've shown you these gingerbread pancakes like a million times, yawn and a half, but I've never drowned them in BOILED CIDER SYRUP before! Seriously, try gingerbread and distilled apple-soul together and watch the bitter sarcasm disappear from your "Good morning."

This is a big ol' mouthful of fall.

Anyway, we're hosting my moms group's Halloween party tomorrow, so it's pretty much a flurry of activity around here. Luckily, Anna couldn't wait to help out in the kitchen!

And I put Ivy in charge of fixing up around the house.

We're almost ready!


They also think the Cat in the Hat should just settle down

Most of what I've eaten since Friday can be found over at Food Lush, as I've decided to exploit all out-of-town jaunts for their culinary content from here on out. (Listen, there was a Boerne-Restaurant-Guide-shaped hole in the internet, and I filled it.) Anyway, check it out, it's sandwichy! Then come back here and try to believe that this Chicken Enchilada Stuffed Zucchini was in fact appetizing, despite all appearances to the contrary.

I tried it from many angles. They all looked this this.

I'm starting to think my children are on the side of those who characterize The Lorax as "unfair to the logging industry."

Apparently the trees are saying "We are super fun to play with."
We took advantage of this weekend's change of scenery to try out a new, hat-free style for Anna. I think she really dug it!

Let me know if anyone needs a model who specializes in "bereft child" shots.


Beer waffles

Oh, good news! For me! I made this the other day, so I have no obligation to provide any other commentary or amusement.

Nothing to say. Just basking. Basking.

Okay, I reined it in a bit with this kale and butternut squash pasta.

Sorry, perfectly nice dinner. Still basking.

In the midst of my Welsh rarebit distraction, Anna has thrown herself into her holiday stickers.

Pretty sure she's thinking about those beer waffles.


Some of the pictures I took of that fried chicken were basically obscene

Dan was out of town for another Friday night, so I whipped up a meatza as usual ordered a normal pizza with crust and cheese and such. I was happy about it, but the girls were pretty bummed to be missing out on my home cooking.

They forced it down.

The real food star of the weekend was the brunch buffet at the wedding we attended on Saturday. Fried chicken AND bagels with lox.

Linguists agree that "cellar door" "brunch buffet" is the most beautiful phrase in the English language.

This wedding was the closest I have ever come to walking into a living Pinterest board and I mean that as the highest compliment because it was basically the cutest thing in the universe. So apparently sometimes people pin a bunch of cool ideas and then actually do them? As opposed to half-assing one or two of them? Interesting.

Anna was so overwhelmed by it all she actually couldn't even manage a full scowl.

The mason jars were throwing her.

Anna and Cash got a chance to play one of their favorite games, One-Smile-At-A-Time. Though their enthusiasm seems to have waned a bit in the past two years. It's really less a game and more a lifelong mission to be uncooperative in cute photo op situations.

Okay, good job, Cash! Now you go, Anna.

I guess that's "Cheese"? Maybe more toward the camera next time.

Cash, come on, it doesn't work with your mouth full, dude.

You know what? Maybe you guys should just eat your snack.

Anyway, I know I joke about all the forced half-smiling and grimacing and whatnot, but sometimes it really does get me down. I just can't figure out where she got that.