Monday, April 11, 2011

Places to go, things to see

Rachael, over at Always Wanted Four, has set up a scholarship fund for Ukrainian orphans to come to the US on a student exchange.  She has put together a site where you can donate to help an American family host a child over the summer. She is also running an etsy store from her blog with cute little hand purses and the money there will go to the fund as well. Whether the child is open to adoption or not is going to be different for all the kids. But the opportunity and experiences available to a child through a hosting program are invaluable. Rachael says it so well herself and so I will be quiet now and send you to her page. Simple Wishes Scholarship

Coincidentally, or maybe not so, The Husband called my attention to a story about Chernobyl. After reading the story and following some links, I found this project, called Chernobyl Legacy by Paul Fusco. It's in a slide show format with the photographer (I believe) telling the stories. It is chilling to watch. Haunting.  Comments? Thoughts?

On a lighter note, here is the last link I wanted to put out there

Ok, I am not the type of person who likes foofy and frilly things, but my girls are. These are some of the best hair clips I have ever come across. They are so nicely done and sturdy enough to survive my kids. I ordered a few for the girls for Christmas and I was just so impressed with the quality that I kept it in the back of my mind just in case I was doing a link- post anytime soon. I don't know how she sells the clips so inexpensively either. OK- can you tell I love this shop? This is a picture of one of the bows I ordered:

I mean, gorgeous right? So anyway, just passing it on.

Now I have a favor to ask. I am not well known as a person who cooks. Food. I don't like to be bothered with it most days. I am not a big eater and my kids are only fans of the "beige" food group. You know, noodles, chicken nuggets, biscuits, etc. Problem is they keep wanting to eat. Every freaking day. It's exhausting and I am sick to death of the 5 things I make that we all will eat and enjoy.
The girls are good with most fruits and vegetables, but they don't want their food all mixed up, casserole style. They like to keep their textures separated, thank you very much. They are not adventurous with flavor either. I ordered a cookbook but it's just not rockin' my boat. Too much fussy stuff to do.
So here is the favor..... can anyone recommend a good basic cookbook? Nothing tricky or fancy, just you know, plop the food in a pan and let it cook itself. I have a motto for cooking, which is "no food should take longer to cook than to eat", which in my house is about 20 minutes including time for tantrums and whining fits. I know that kind of limits my options. Anyway. Anyone?


  1. Rachael Ray's cookbooks? I picked up a book at Sam's called "Not Your MOther's Slow Cooker" that looks interesting, but I've only made one recipe out of it - bbq ribs. BBQ ribs are a hassle to make. I don't like cutting meat and trying to get the fat off. I'll be watching your coments because I would love a good, simple cookbook, too!

  2. Essie, thanks so much for posting the scholarship link! I have a started fund for 3 kiddos which I will post about later today. Again, thanks!!

    Cannot help you on the cook-book bit...I can never think of anything for dinner. I really love Cooking Light magazine, but all the recipes are admittedly complicated. I mostly just look at the pictures and PLAN that I'll make stuff. =)

  3. i dont use cookbooks any more. i did use better homes and gardens cook book though and thats basic. i just google recipes or use all which is dangerous since i lose too much on that site and i HATE to cook and have never been a cooker...i am like u i hate to cook but my kids force me cook something and they are beige eaters too and hate anything mixed together like casseroles.
    I make stuff in small batches and try to get them to try stuff but they usually don't
    anyway-check up that site. they have kid friendly recipes.

    if they like noodles, like my kids do, i just use that as a base and add things one at a time and see what they will accept mixed up. I show them pictures of the made items on the web and ask if they will eat it if i make it too and some things surprise me they say they will eat.

  4. If you are interested in crockpot recipes, I would suggest checking out Stephanie has a wonderful website and two print books. Her recipes are amazing - and her family is gluten free if anyone has to cook that way.

    I'm also doing weight watchers, and I really like their recipes as well. I don't like things that are hard to cook with lots of weird ingredients.

  5. I second the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook. I like the 365 blog for crock pot, Taste of Home books are good (someone turned me on to them this year).

    I also bought a good cookbook (so far it's pretty basic)from Amazon, Apples to Jam. The author is from Italy, so uses a lot of veal. I'm not a veal eater so I skip over them but she has some basic easy recipes. She used to be a nanny I believe. Everything is separated out by color, ie green, red, etc. But she has some very basic recipes. I haven't made any yet so not sure on how much time.

    Allrecipes is good, too. I use them a lot,, Betty Crocker's site is good, Kraft's site might be good for your eaters.

    I know what you mean on the cooking, I'd just love to get a set of meals we could eat, or rotate out, that would be good. I don't really have that, so I tend to look up recipes and see if they work. I'd like to have recipes I can go to each week and just make.

    Interested to see what others have.

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  7. I rarely use cook books anymore. Too much work! I have started a list of meals that work for everyone, and I post it on the fridge. As I find a new one, I add it to the list, so that I can just look at the list of meal ideas in the morning and pick what we want to eat that day. Lots of soups around here with bread and scrambled eggs. :)

    Noodles can be done in a million ways. With cheese, with tomato sauce (sneak red lentils into the tomato sauce) with pesto and chicken, rice noodles with seafood and mango and avocado with peanut sauce. Lasagna if you are amazing, unlike me.

    Will they eat beans? Lots of great slow cooker bean recipes that take way less than 20 minutes to shove in the crock.

  8. OK, this might sound weird, but there are some Star Wars cookbooks for kids. We have tried some of the recipes in them, and everything we've tried has been great. You might be able to get the girls to help out because all the recipes are so simple. Titles are "the Star Wars cookbook: wookiee cookies and other galactic recipes" and "the star wars cookbook II: Darth Malt and more galactic recipes." (P is so much a star wars geek (makes up quizzes with totally obscure questions, etc.) that I worry he's going to be one of those adults who goes around to conventions dressed as darth vader or sidius.) Betty Crocker is also a fantastic standby--simple and basic and very good food.

  9. I have a blog with some recipes for pretty easy stuff, though some falls into the mixed-together category. But you are welcome to check it out.

  10. i have a blog of recipes i try...

    :D some of the recipes are my moms...not all tho

  11. I use to subscribe to Taste of Home but now just go to their website. They use normal ingredients and have down to earth recipes. You can find them at I even love that I can check a bunch of recipes and put them on a grocery list and print it out and take it with me to the store.

  12. I like the food network website. They have recipes from all their different shows.

  13. Ok, so I love to cook and my kids eat everything, so maybe I'm not the best one to ask, but I LOVE Martha Stewart's Everyday Foods magazine. Everything is easy, most things are quick, and since it comes every month in the mail it keeps me from getting bored.

  14. The Bisquick cookbook is really good - lots of variations and tasty stuff, and the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook for huge variety of anything you need to know in an easy format.

  15. I mean really! Why is it they have to eat every day?

    It sounds like your mealtimes are very similar to ours (including tantrums). Except, my youngest wont' eat fruit or vegetables. Period. End of Story. Yucky!


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