Friday, August 29, 2014

Tortugas and Bu

Started off the day with a smoothie. Cherries, spinach, acai, raw vanilla protein powder, almond milk, chlorella, and stevia, topped with bee pollen and hemp granola. 

We met Tony for lunch. We decided to try out Tortuga Flats due to its proximity to our new house. When we sat down, the kids were given some brightly-colored wax sticks to twist into sculptures.

We started with a salsa sampler. The smoky dark salsa was my favorite, but the avocado tomatillo salsa and pico de gallo were good, too.

I had the veggie enchiladas filled with quinoa, sweet potato, and kale.  Mostly sweet potato. Maybe one bite of kale per enchilada. An all right lunch, but we wouldn't go out of our way to go back.

Light dinner: Hatch chile baguette from Central Market, and honeydew kombucha. I had never tried this brand, The Bu, before. I love honeydew so I'll look for it in the future.

Olivia learned to play dominoes before bedtime. This girl loves games and she can beat me at many of them.

Monster, my companion and also my spirit animal.

See you on Monday for Vegan MoFo!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Birthday Boy

So I already mentioned how Jackson celebrated his sixth birthday up in Oklahoma with his cousins. We tried to make the actual day special for him, too, in a more low-key sense. He woke up to presents from my parents and my brother and sister-in-law.

I made some special breakfast butterflies for him and Olivia, using the Sinfully Wholesome Waffles from Isa Does It for the "wings."

Later, a birthday dinner at his favorite restaurant, Chuy's. Celebratory margaritas for Mama and Daddy.

I ordered my usual combination of salad and veggie enchilada.

Jackson was a little startled when the servers gathered around our table to sing to him. But an ice cream treat brought a smile back to his face.

Throughout our meal we were kept company by a little cat who wandered around on the patio and found some stray salsa bowls to lick clean.

Happy birthday, Jackson! Six is going to be filled with many adventures.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Ready for Soccer

Jackson has had soccer fundamentals in the past, but this fall he will be playing on an actual league with games and everything. I'm not sure how I feel about him learning to be competitive, but hopefully the other parents are relaxed about it and realize these are just little kids out on the field. 

Practice doesn't start until next week, but his cleats and shin guards arrived in the mail today and he wanted to break them in. Olivia was eager to join in.

Afterwards, lunch. Carrot sticks and hummus, strawberries, sun chips, and lemonade.

We also snacked on some homemade granola bars. I am determined to find a version my kids will love. We tried Chocolate-Covered Katie's recipe. Mine turned out a little more dry and cakey than her pictures would suggest. They are good but we will have to make some other recipes and compare.

Dinner was Thai Peanut Empowered Noodle Bowl from the Oh She Glows cookbook. I topped it with wasabi sesame seeds that I found at Central Market. See those bright green little specks? They're not spicy (bummer) but they do add a slight wasabi flavor. 

Are you tired of me making stuff from this cookbook yet? Haha. Actually, I'm debating ordering Salad Samurai, so that might be the next book I binge-cook from. But for now we're sticking with OSG.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Mellow Mushroom

We don't dine on the Drag very often when UT is in session, because traffic is bad and parking can be a headache. But we recently took advantage of the last few days of summer break to grab lunch at Mellow Mushroom. We started with some olive cheesy bread. Olivia wants me to make this for her at home. We are the olive lovers in the family.

While we waited for our pizza, we admired the cool artwork on the wall above us.

I ordered a vegan pie with all kinds of veggies and tofu scattered on top. Their sauce and crust are wonderful. You have to admire a crust that can stand up to that many toppings.

At home, music was made.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Tony's Birthday

Tony's birthday fell on a Sunday this year and he said he really wanted to chill out at home instead of going out, because we have been so busy lately. I made a couple of things from the Oh She Glows cookbook that would appeal to his love of Tex-Mex. First, the Life-Affirming Nacho Dip. Cheezy and wonderful. No reason to wait for a party to make this one. It will get eaten up.

I also made the Taco Fiesta Potato Crisps. Think of all the flavors of a taco -- nut-based taco meat, cashew sour cream, salsa and scallions -- atop homemade baked potato chips. So good. They're small, so we would go back for "just one more," and pretty soon they were all gone!

We gifted him with an antique globe minibar, which he has always wanted. We finally have room for one in our new house.

Overall, he said it was a nice relaxing day with his favorite monkeys.

Friday, August 22, 2014

A Day's Eats

Watermelon for breakfast.

Eat Your Greens Detox Soup from The Oh She Glows Cookbook for lunch. I was curious about the unusual combination of flavors in this soup...broccoli, kale, mushrooms, and seaweed? Of course it all came together perfectly. Can't stop, won't stop with this awesome cookbook.

Afternoon snack: No Mallow Rice Krispie Treats from Fran Costigan's Vegan Chocolate. Agar powder and guar gum act as the "glue" for these marshmallow-free bars. Jackson and Olivia loved helping make these.

Dinner was Spicy Tomato, Peanut & Kale Pasta from La Dolce Vegan. Always delightful.

Jackson and his Power Ranger army.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Oklahoma Birthday

Jackson wanted to celebrate his sixth birthday up in Oklahoma at his Grandma Lillie's house, so that is what we did. I picked up some road trip snacks: Late July ranch chips, Hail Merry raw lemon macaroons, Tom's Tabooley hummus falafel wrap, and Harmless Harvest raw coconut water. I have tried many brands of coconut water, but I saw this article about how not all brands are of equal quality, and I decided to try one of the best-rated. It's expensive, but man, it tasted so good!

Our first evening in Oklahoma, my awesome mother-in-law volunteered to watch the kids so Tony and I could have a kid-free get-together with our friends Michelle and Alan. We met them at Whiskey Cake in OKC. The decor made us smile. Fresh sprigs of rosemary in a light bulb vase? Never seen that before. Also, the male wait staff all sort of resembled lumberjacks. White t-shirts, suspenders, beards.

Tony and I decided to share some appetizers, starting with hummus and pita bread and fried green tomatoes. The tomatoes' breading was super light and crisp, as it should be.

I had a sazerac, which featured one large block of ice, instead of ice cubes. Why? I have no idea. I also had a hibiscus gin and tonic, which I liked much better, but I forgot to take a picture of it.

Still hungry, we ordered goat cheese "fondue" with olives and sourdough bread. I wouldn't really call it fondue, since it wasn't melted, but it was good and filling.

The next day, we just hung out around the house. Games were played.

Tony was wrestled into submission.

Garden cherry tomatoes were eaten.

The next day, it was party time! Jackson's cousins came over to celebrate with him.

First duck-duck-goose, then freeze tag.

Thought they were gonna knock me down! Haha.

Sweaty and red-faced, Jackson opened his presents.

He requested a Transformer cake this year. It was my first attempt at making and working with fondant. It turned out a little too thick and goopy. My Transformer looked like he had a rough night.

Jackson didn't mind.

We had to come home the next day. Before we left, we had lunch at Golden Corral. Have you eaten at one of these? We don't like the one in Austin because they do a lot of seafood and it smells like fish. The ones in Oklahoma are pretty good though, as long as you understand that your plate will be heavy on the yellows and browns and lacking the other colors of the rainbow. I had broccoli, mac n cheese, fried okra, roll, corn pudding, and carrot souffle. 

Cotton candy for the birthday boy's dessert.

Sister needed her own.

A great visit as always! We love going to Grandma's house.